Author: Julia Greenberg

You may not know me, but you’ve probably seen me around. Maybe you’ve given me one of those looks that says, “I’m sorry, that really sucks,” and wondered what you would do if you had to crutch up the gruesome hill known as Cornell. Maybe you’ve snickered a bit at me, but don’t feel bad—I do look hilarious. Many of you have also probably held my crutches as I grabbed something from my backpack.

It hasn’t been easy limping and shuffling my way across the Arts Quad and North Campus, but being injured on campus has its perks. Here’s how to milk this injury for what it’s worth:


1. Be late to any or all of your classes. It’s usually okay anyway, but if you’re on crutches it’s really okay. What teacher is going to yell at the poor student hobbling into class a few minutes late? What kind of monster does that?

2. Say yes to piggy back rides. If no one offers, you have a right to demand them–your armpits can’t handle those crutches any longer. And to the guy who asked me if I was the one being carried across North Campus that morning, yes, that was indeed me. I was that champion jouster proudly parading around the quad on my stallion, lance (read: crutches) in hand.

Photographer: Julia Greenberg
Photographer: Julia Greenberg

3. Get the tray at the dining halls! You’re entitled. Give it to your friends, and make them wait in the Mongolian Grill line, and the sushi line, and the salad line, and the omelet line on Sundays. Don’t be afraid to make them go back for seconds or thirds. And you obviously need ice cream.

4. You may also want to time your steps (or should I say, swing-steps) wisely if you notice any dashing young men who might want to lend you a hand. Yes, you do need their assistance walking down those stairs. And yes, you would like some help getting to lunch. And no, you wouldn’t mind if they sat down and joined you.

5. See someone else crutching across campus? Send them a friendly wave. You’re connected by your shared inability to run, jump, or play any type of sport, so you might as well say “Hey.” Or even a loud “eyyyy!” They’ll know what it means. If you feel bold enough to approach them, all you have to say is “What happened to you?” and you’re set. Instant friends. People love sharing injury stories. Even if it happened eight years ago, it’s shocking how much people enjoy telling you about their broken leg from soccer or their sprained ankle from that time they fell out a window.

Photographer: Julia Greenberg
Photographer: Julia Greenberg

6. Lastly, take advantage of CU Lift. This service is incredibly helpful and provides transportation to and from all of your classes. The drivers are some of the nicest people I have ever met, and their smiling faces help me get through the day.

Despite my advice, I’m not trying to say you should turn into an entitled brat. All I’m saying is that I completely understand if you stay on your crutches a wee bit longer than you have to. Just don’t take all the extra help for granted.