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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Top five worst smells on and around campus

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Bianca Oppedisano

A man holds his nose.

A wise man once said, “you can’t see the sights, without smelling the smells.” When it comes to UMass Boston, this couldn’t be more true. While our campus certainly has its fair share of gorgeous views, it also has its fair share of potent whiffs and mighty wafts. So buckle your seatbelts folks and brace yourselves for the top five worst smells on and around campus.
Coming in last on this list is the Beacon Student Fitness Center. On any given day, you’ll find people running, jumping and doing all sorts of physical things in the name of fitness. With vast quantities of people working out, comes vast quantities of bodily fluid being excreted. We’re talking sweat here folks, just to be clear! You see, every smell has a story, and when I walk by the gym, I don’t smell sweat—I smell determination, grit, ambition and the drive to grab life by the antlers and say “yes!” These are qualities I do not possess in myself, so if anything, this is the smell of jealousy. It reeks!
Up next in our fourth position is the campus bus. There isn’t much to say about the bus that hasn’t already been said, except for the fact that it smells like a rotting cabbage wrapped in the lining of a skunk’s large intestine with a garnish of garlic and farts that’s been left to wither under the blistering rays of an unforgiving sun. I may have exaggerated a bit, but on a serious note, it smells like feet.
For number three we have the subterranean depths of Wheatley. This is an odd smell, a smell that eludes description other than it being generally unsettling. When I inhale to take a whiff, I feel an ominous rattling inside of me, as if my skeleton were a cage and my soul were some deranged inmate clambering to break free. It’s almost as though it foreshadows the coming of some inescapable truth, a lapse of reason, the folly of man at the hands of insolence. Some strange entity lurks in these depths; something dark, something familiar yet unplaceable—something stinky.
Claiming the second place prize for worst smell is none other than JFK station. Consisting of an intoxicating mix of trash, train grease, gasoline and a hearty helping of urine: JFK has it all. If you were creating a cologne to be sold to Oscar the Grouch, this would be it. It’s a smell that always manages to render me speechless, not due to astonishment, but because I’m holding my breath.
Finally, for the crown jewel of bad smells we have low tide on the Harbor Walk. When the tide goes out, the ocean’s seedy underbelly is revealed. A thick layer of seaweed, decaying fish and human garbage gives off a sulfuric scent akin to really bad eggs. It’s like the demonic inhabitants of Davy Jones’ locker have been released to wreak havoc on my nasal cavities. Sometimes this smell is so potent that it has the audacity to penetrate the walls of this very school, invading classrooms and polluting our supposed safe spaces for learning. This is truly a smell for the history books and the clear winner of our first place position. If I wasn’t gagging, I’d be impressed.

About the Contributors
Joe DiPersio, Humor Editor
Bianca Oppedisano, Illustrator