Living on a college campus in a city can be exciting and terribly dangerous. A safe city campus life is possible. With these tips, you’ll enjoy your college experience inside the Metropolis.
1. Don’t Hang Out In Poorly Lit Places
Of all the things that ought to be budgeted in a city, proper lighting is a must. It is incredibly dangerous to walk in areas in Boston that are poorly lit, particularly areas such as the Fens that are not only dark but secluded from other people. You could get hurt, attacked or worse and nobody would be the wiser because they can’t see you. Don’t give yourself the chance to make this mistake.
2. The Buddy System Is Key
The “every man for himself” system is incredibly flawed, especially out in the concrete jungle, and boy is it a jungle. Having a buddy doesn’t ensure you’ll be safer roaming around, but it might ensure that if something does happen, you or your friend can run and get help and prevent what could become for either you or them, a disaster in the making. This is a very important tip to ensure a safe city campus life for you and your fellow students.
3. Always Check Your Pockets/Purse
It’s a good idea before you leave anywhere that you make sure you have all your valuables and ensure that you’ve got your phone, wallet, house keys and so on, because sometimes in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, you might drop them, or get pick pocketed. At least a few times during the day, it never hurts to check to make sure you’ve got all your things. You may get locked out of your building by not having your keys, you are immobilized by not having your ID, and there are all kinds of unfortunate scenarios that might come about without having your cellphone. The city is a place where the most valuable items could be stolen, so it’s of vital importance to make sure everything you’ve got is insured, your computer is backed up, and your pictures and demos are on a hard drive somewhere.
4. Be Wary Wearing Headphones
Walking through a city without getting injured is a complicated process without any kind of distractions. Wearing headphones at full volume, with the use of noise-cancelling technology improves the difficulty 100-fold, so why give yourself the extra risk? If you can’t live without music for just a few hours every day, even if it ensures a safe city campus life, maybe wear your headphones on the bus, the train, or in a park, and just enjoy the mellifluous sounds of New York City and Boston Love Calls (i.e. honking the car horn, middle finger extended, bellowing a guttural ‘Fuck Youuuu!’).
5. Wear Your Helmet
In the same way that wearing headphones increases chances of injury, one may notice living in Boston that there are dozens of cyclists who often wear headphones, don’t wear bright clothing, don’t signal as they turn, don’t use their bell, and worst of all DON’T WEAR THEIR HELMET! It’s incredibly unsafe, and quite selfish, because it may seem like your demise by not wearing a helmet only affects you, but on the contrary, it has the potential of permanently scarring everyone who witnesses it as well. It will not only ensure a safe city campus life for you, but for all your fellow Bostonians as well.
6. Be Careful Being Intoxicated In Public
This rule is important in the same way as the last two rules, but it has more significance in that the city is full of creeps who may be on the prowl for something to be intoxicated and vulnerable. If you follow tip number 2 and have an either sober or soberer friend, you’re in luck, but it’s for your own self-care that you aren’t roaming the streets of Boston alone and completely unable to take care of yourself.
7. Carry Water
With all the toxic city fumes and concrete, the temperature in Boston is incredibly feisty, especially in the summer when there’s no wind and the car exhaust allows one to fry an egg on the sidewalk. It’s in times such as these where one could easily become dehydrated and fall under the influence of heat exhaustion. The general lack of functioning water fountains the city make it imperative to have some kind of container for water available, not necessarily just for you. There are all kinds of people who may not be so careful, and by merely being prepared you have the chance to save someone’s life. This is an important tip for a safe city campus life, for as the ancients used to say, water is life.
8. Be Vigilant When Talking To Strangers
There’s not really much etiquette regarding what one’s supposed to do about friendly strangers on the street, and in Boston, there are all kinds of wizards and weirdos who roam around. Some are amusing, some are pathetic, others are even frightening. Don’t feel obliged to talk to somebody just because they might accuse you of being selfish for ignoring them. You don’t owe them anything. You’re not a hero for giving them a dollar or listening to their story either. If it’s within your power to help them, do it, but don’t fall under the delusions of White Knight Syndrome, just realize that that could be you someday, and sympathize accordingly.
9. Don’t Be In A Rush
This is the most important tip for a safe city campus life. You might have somewhere to be, or be in a hurry, or be late, but all of that doesn’t mean you should rush your way through a busy intersection texting, listening to music or just generally not paying attention. You could lose something and not be aware of it, or get injured and be late to whatever it is you were rushing to get to. Slow and sweaty wins the race, so be like the tortoise.
10. If You See Something, Do Something
There are all kinds of crimes that occur in a city, and you might not be an ideal hero, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do your duties as a citizen. You could be the one that stops a robbery, sexual harassment, physical violence, or any other kind of abuse, so don’t be shy, and don’t be confrontational, just do the necessary and all will work out.
Are there any other tips to ensure a safe city campus life? Post replies in the comments section below!
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John D. Short is a Bassist, and Songwriter/Composer from Tyler, Texas. He is the administrator of Philtrum Publishing Federation, a great lover of conspiracy theories, history and irony. He's a graduate of Berklee College of Music's Jazz Composition Program.