Virtual Warren

Fun, Games, and Community From Columbia Law School

A watercolor painting of Jerome Greene that says "Do you miss the toaster? Us, too."

Who would have thought that we would find ourselves missing the familiar brutalism and inconsistent climate of JGH? This newsletter—not Big Warren, not Little Warren, but Virtual Warren—is a way to keep us connected (and entertained) even though we’re apart.

CROSSWORD by Andy Kravis ’13

Download the crossword puzzle as a PDF by clicking the image below. To play on your computer, download the puzzle file and open it in Across Lite.

Crossword puzzle by Andy Kravis


NAME THAT CASE by Kristen Asp

Scroll down for answers.

In panel 1, a little boy removes a chair from a woman about to sit down. In panel 2, a man with dogs see another man carrying away a fox. In panel 3, a man carrying a parcel of fireworks runs on a train platform.



Can you decode these emojis to figure out faculty members’ last names? Scroll down for answers.

A series of emoji that, when combined, suggest the names of professors. The emoji are 1 GLOVE GLOVE GLOVE 2 BURGER 3 FRANCE FLAG - CE + KEY 4 BULL + MAN DANCER DANCER DANCER DANCER + N 5 MONEY BAG + MAN 6 LE + STAR 7 G + WAVE 8 COFFEE CUP 9 LEMON LEMON LEMON - L 10 FOX 11 COW + CAR + JEANS - NS 12 STORM CLOUD 13 CANDLE + MAN 14 CAT CAT CAT 15 JEANS _ IN 16 C + WRENCH + CUTE FACE + BABY 17 HANDSHAKE + Z + ANGRY FACE 18 BOK CHOY


OLD-FASHIONED GINGERBREAD From the Desk Oven of Dean Lester

Close up picture of the crumb of a gingerbread loaf

If there’s ever been a time to lean in to comfort food it’s now. Like the rest of us, Dean Gillian Lester is self-distancing at home and is putting her kitchen to work. Spice up your baking routine with one of her favorite recipes.

2½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
1½ teaspoons baking soda
1     teaspoon ground cinnamon
1     teaspoon ground ginger
½    teaspoon ground cloves
½    teaspoon salt
½    cup granulated sugar
½    cup butter (1 stick),  plus more for pan
1     egg
1    cup molasses
1    cup hot water
      Whipped cream, for serving

1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease and flour a 9-inch square pan.
2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt.
3. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter. Beat in egg, and mix in molasses. Blend flour mixture into butter mixture. Add hot water and stir. Pour into prepared pan.
4. Bake for 1 hour, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan. Serve with whipped cream.


Visit to find events for current students, faculty, staff, and alumni. If you have questions, contact J.C. White, the coordinator of the program, at [email protected].


De-stress and Take Care

We asked Elizabeth Emens, Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law and director of the Columbia Law School Mindfulness Program, for suggestions about how to destress and take care during this difficult time.


Elizabeth Emens

“Listening seems more important now than ever. This means listening to each other [and] this also means listening to ourselves. In this moment, what do you most need? Do you need to feel one breath? Or do you really need a glass of water? Helping others right now can also be so important. Is there action you can take? . . . Or is there gratitude you can express for someone else’s action? Asking ourselves these questions and really listening  to the answers . . . seems most important right now. This is why we have expanded the offerings of the Mindfulness Program during this critical time.”

Elizabeth Emens, Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law

Practice and Pause

Patricia A. Bloom, M.D.

“Practice moments of mindfulness. Before you log on to your computer or sign on to social media, pause to take a few deep breaths and feel down into your body, being aware of sensations and sense perceptions. Eat your food mindfully for a few moments, bringing full attention to color, shapes, texture, aroma, and taste.”

Patricia A. Bloom, M.D., associate clinical professor of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine of Mount Sinai

Cultivate Awareness

Caroline Voldstad ’18

“Practice bringing mindfulness to your daily activities. Try picking one thing you do each day, whether it’s taking a shower, drinking coffee or tea, or walking your dog . . . [and] cultivate an awareness of all of the sensations of that activity. . . . You might be surprised how these little shifts in awareness can transform these daily activities and bring some measure of calm to a scattered and anxious mind.”

Caroline Voldstad ’18, litigation associate, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, and program builder, Mindfulness Program

Experience the Moment

Home H.C. Nguyen, Ph.D.

“Especially during a time of chaos and uncertainty, we can always come back to the truth of this moment: How do we experience the reality of this moment? We can always return to the awareness of the breath, awareness of bodily sensations and emotions, [and awareness of] our intentions and attitude, our sense of gratitude, our childlike curiosity.”

Home H.C. Nguyen, Ph.D., adjunct assistant professor, Columbia Teachers College, and founder, MindKind Institute

Engage Your Body

Magi Pierce

“Move your body! The lymphatic system does not have its own pump and therefore needs our movement to circulate. Take a walk, if you can do so safely, or walk inside. Do a seated side bend on each side. Even three deep breaths will help shift the stagnancy.”

Magi Pierce, yoga and meditation instructor

A line art drawing of Jerome Greene Hall as seen from Amsterdam Avenue, for coloring in


Dig out your colored pencils and give JGH some love. #JGHNewLook


Reading is fun . . . damental to getting through these stranger-than-fiction times. Here are a few recommendations from the Communications, Marketing, and Public Affairs team.

Great Escapes

Travels With Charley in Search of America

John Steinbeck

What better book to read when you’re quarantined than this classic about traveling across America? Plus, there’s a large black standard poodle as a travel companion and excellent instructions on how to make coffee with chicory!

More Great Escapes

We’re Also Reading . . .

Meddling Kids
Edgar Cantero

The Accidental Further Adventures of the Hundred-Year-Old Man
Jonas Jonasson

Strange Weather in Tokyo
Hiromi Kawakami

The Hike
Drew Magary

The Mirror and the Light
Hilary Mantel

Madeline Miller

Astoria: John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson’s Lost Pacific Empire: A Story  of Wealth, Ambition, and Survival
Peter Stark

A Gentleman in Moscow
Amor Towles


Deep Dives Into Dystopia

The Fifth Season

N.K. Jemisin

Now’s the perfect time to read a story about the world ending! In the first book of the Broken Earth trilogy, a woman must hide her secret power and find her kidnapped daughter in a postapocalyptic world where the power of “Father Earth” is wielded as a weapon.

More Deep Dives Into Dystopia

We’re Also Reading . . .

The MaddAddam trilogy (Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, MaddAddam)
Margaret Atwood

Station Eleven
Emily St. John Mandel

Mind, Body, and Spirit

The Year of Magical Thinking

Joan Didion

Because we are all going to contend with loss and grief before the crisis is over. Didion is her usual unflinching self, offering a detailed account of the treacherous journey she experienced the year after the sudden death of her husband of nearly 40 years.


More Mind, Body, Spirit

We’re Also Reading . . .

New Power: How Power Works in Our Hyperconnected World—and How to Make It Work for You
Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms

Tartine Bread
Chad Robertson


CROSSWORD PUZZLE: Download answer key

NAME THAT CASE: 1. Garratt v. Dailey 2. Pierson v. Post 3. Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad

FACULTY EMOJI QUIZ: 1. Joshua Mitts 2. Philip Hamburger 3. Katherine Franke 4. Jessica Bulman-Pozen   5. Daniel Richman 6. Gillian Lester 7. Zohar Goshen 8. John C. Coffee Jr. 9. Elizabeth Emens 10. Merritt Fox  11. Elora Mukherjee 12. Susan Sturm 13. Matthew Waxman 14. Avery Katz 15. Lynnise Pantin 16. Kimberlé Crenshaw  17. Gillian Metzger 18. Jamal Greene 

Watercolor art by Lindsey Jones (@lindsfrancesart)