Author: Liza Mansbach

As evidenced by the presence of visible grass in February, Cornell has been experiencing an unseasonably warm winter. While it’s hard to complain about warm weather in Ithaca, our winter coats–usually out in full force this time of year–are consequently experiencing an acute unemployment crisis. Here are four ways to put your coat back to work.  


The Perfect Pillow Fight

The pillow fight, frequently depicted in major motion pictures, is a staple of American childhood. However, much like college, falling in love, and Manhattan apartments, real life pillow fights pale in comparison to their cinematic counterparts, mainly because they lack the idealized cloud of white feathers. However, you can create a picture perfect pillow fight using your winter coat.  Simply rip open the seams of the nearest puffy jacket, start throwing the contents at your friends while they whack you with a pillow and voilà: the pillow fight of your dreams.


Body Pillow/Replacement Person

For those of us without a designated cuddle buddy, fear not. If you stuff your coat with pillows, it will be roughly the size of another person. Why? Because while the temperatures might be higher than usual, the winter grey skies and the inevitable bad moods they bring are here to stay. And what’s guaranteed to lift your spirits on a dark day? Snuggling, preferably with a cup of hot cocoa and 3-5 seasons of Grey’s Anatomy.  Simply bring your stuffed coat to bed and cuddle away. Bonus: you can be little or big spoon.


Incredibly Expensive Doormat

Although there may not be any snow on your boots, your shoes are still probably covered with grime. The mysterious yet unavoidable sludge that covers every frat basement is better left outside. While a regular person would just buy a doormat, you, a poor college student, can save money by using your coat instead. Considering that a doormat costs $13 and nice coats go for $500, I would say it’s a fair trade.


Conversation-Starting Wall Decoration

They say fashion is art, so why not treat your winter coat like the masterpiece it is and hang it in on the wall next to your Kate Upton poster? (Fun fact: the Canada Goose trend started when she wore one on the cover of Sports Illustrated.)  You can even get your friends’ coats together and create an art gallery titled, Global Warming hits Ithaca: A Collection of Cold Weather Castoffs.  If anyone asks why you have coats on your wall, make up a fake story about punching a hole in it and hoping your landlord won’t notice so you get your security deposit back. At this point the conversation will turn to Ithaca Landlords/Slumlords and how no one gets their deposits back and everyone will forget about your poor decor choices.