Top 10: Making Your SSI Last

Disclaimer: This article is of an extremely satirical nature and may not be for everyone. Please send any concerns to the Editor-in-Chief, Alyssa Romano at

Photo by Ruthe-Ellen Auman

I know, I know. October. It’s an excruciating month on our bank accounts. When I woke up this morning, I glanced at my Bison calendar and groaned inwardly. Aw crud, it’s October!? When my billfold saw that, she almost jumped out of the window and into a puddle.
Good news! I have ten great ways to help you stretch your government-provided money to the very last penny, and still be able to afford every event, every party and Homecoming! You’ll still get drunk at every opportunity, although you might have to swallow your pride just a little.

10. If you’re a smoker, October is seriously an excellent month to quit! It’s $7 a pack for the cheapest possible cigarettes– really?

9. Ugh, you’ve got a bash this weekend and nothing to wear! Tip: Forget Urban Outfitters, and go for Forever 21! That place has the trashiest clothes only appropriate for a sweaty club, and is even cheaper than H&M. Why spend more than $30 on an outfit if it’s coming off a few hours later?

8. Time to start using your free Gallaudet daily planner! Take inventory of the events and check out what parties are going to happen, and what the entry fees are for them. Then glance at your budget. Start making sacrifices. That house party with the black-white theme that has a $5 entry fee and $3 jell-o shots? May not be worth it.

7. That TV you’ve been thinking about purchasing since the beginning of the semester but keep putting off? It will just have to wait another month for another installment of Uncle Sam’s allowance.

6. Cut down on wasting your alcohol on pre-parties. Have a few shots, maybe a beer or two, and show up to some random parties fashionably late. The people there should be already drunk and thrilled to see you. They’ll immediately make you do shots with them!

5. Doesn’t it seem like a great time to start calling in those favors and debts people owe you? I think so too. They can be reimbursed in cold hard cash, a bottle of tequila, or a ticket to an event!

4. October is also a perfect month to start using up those dusty blocks lying forgotten on your ID card instead of at the end of the semester. Cafe? You might whine about it, but never forget: it’s free food… Food you already paid for!

3. Stop being a brand name snob and get to know the cheaper options. Give up the Grey Goose vodka, and write down Velicoff instead at Family Liquor. Upside: you’ll only regret your first few shots!

2. Say no to the 3 AM Subway trips. I know, Subway only sounds and tastes excellent during those wee hours of the morning, but your $5 foot-long really does add up after a few continuous weeks.

1. If all else fails, phone home. “Ma, my SSI didn’t come in this month, do you think you could help me?” It’s a handy but dangerous trick. Don’t abuse it; save it for those pesky Octobers.

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31 Responses to “Top 10: Making Your SSI Last”

  1. Nineteen
    October 3, 2011 at 9:39 PM #

    Why do so many of those involve alcohol? Does that mean I automatically save money because I don’t drink and party as hard as many other Gallaudetians do?

    • chillax
      October 4, 2011 at 1:10 AM #

      yup! I don’t party as hard as some people I know and I’m always asked why I can buy expensive things. Budgeting and using your money wisely, baby!

      Enjoy your extra $$$ 🙂

      (I do like to chill, hence the name with my friends sometimes and get my drink on sometimes, not denying that)

  2. A.M.
    October 4, 2011 at 12:07 AM #

    I am honestly appalled that this was even allowed to be published. At first I thought maybe it was a sarcastic piece, but then was quite horrified when I realized it is a real piece. I’ve never expected much from the Buff & Blue in terms of being a paper with very high integrity, but this is a new all time low.

    • BeJo Goodridge
      October 4, 2011 at 12:19 AM #

      Sorry you feel that way! It is indeed a parody on the “typical college life.” 🙂 The top 10s have always been humorous pieces, not something to be taken seriously.

      • A.M.
        October 4, 2011 at 12:32 AM #

        Humor or not…it’s still disgraceful to this school and the students here. Gallaudet is trying to increase recruitment and retention, meanwhile this kind of stuff is being published on our school publication’s website. No wonder some people don’t take this school seriously. Furthermore, it’s just disrespectful. Whoever the faculty advisor is for this publication should be embarrassed that they would even let this be posted…even as humor. I’m all for freedom of student voice in publications and even humorous pieces, but this just makes our school look bad. And it is already evidenced from the other people who have commented about their taxpayer money and where it’s going. It’s one thing to joke about SSI paydays in private with your friends, it’s another to do so publicly on a school website where people from ALL OVER THE WORLD have access to it and may not know your intentions or understand them.

        • ZANE
          October 4, 2011 at 1:15 AM #


        • Ho-Rah
          October 10, 2011 at 8:10 PM #

          Dude. Everyone knows about it. It’s time to come out of the closet darling.

    • chillax
      October 4, 2011 at 12:59 AM #

      chill the fuck out. Don’t get so butthurt over a piece that’s clearly meant to be tongue-in-cheek. I’m one of those students who never would have attended Gallaudet pre-reforms and I may not party hardcore like some people I see, I understand that partying is a part of college life.

      I make jokes about Gallaudet being a party school all the time to Gallaudetians and non-Gallaudetians. My friends at other colleges do the same about their schools even if it’s not known as a party school. We all know what happens in college 😉 No point in sugar-coating stuff, I find BnB refreshing this year because they tell what it is like (this top 10 list is clearly sarcastic though).

      What people do with SSI money is an open secret. I know people who drop half of it on drugs. There are hearing people who abuse SSI too. Stories about people paying for food with stamps while wearing designer purses and driving expensive cars are all around the net.

      Can’t we have some fun with our money? I doubt that every person who gets SSI spends it all on serious stuff. Everybody who enjoys a good beer or smokes uses it to buy alcohol and cigs.

      So, get that stick out of your ass.

  3. Anon
    October 4, 2011 at 12:19 AM #

    Disgusting. If you claim that being deaf is a good thing, we taxpayers should not be paying for your smokes or alcohol. You make me want to vomit.

    • Oroboros
      October 4, 2011 at 12:49 AM #

      So disgusting that I recognized myself in several of those tips!

    • Ho-Rah
      October 10, 2011 at 8:13 PM #

      Ehh aim your vomit to your congressman. One term, and they’re paid for life. Yeah with your tax money. They can become congressman but oh no they can’t be anything else after that T-T This is Ultra-Sad!

  4. anonymous
    October 4, 2011 at 12:48 AM #

    I strongly agree with A.M. and Anon. This article makes the school look like a complete joke. I am disgusted and outraged that you would write this, and even more so that the school would allow something so repulsive to be published. I work long, hard hours and pay taxes so that you can put off buying a TV and wait for “another installment of Uncle Sam’s allowance”??

    This is disrespectful and truly offensive. Shame on you.

    • ZANE
      October 4, 2011 at 1:12 AM #

      cool story bro

    • Grady
      October 5, 2011 at 6:12 PM #

      I love the fact that a satire peice offends you so much. What’s the point of satire if it doesn’t cause some people to froth in the mouth and bash their fingers on the keyboard with self-righteous fury.

      By all means, keep frothing. I’m going to go get some popcorn and enjoy the show.

      • Victoria
        October 5, 2011 at 7:19 PM #

        I’m right along with you!

      • Leila
        October 7, 2011 at 12:33 AM #

        Exactly, Grady!

        If you’re not writing anything that makes people feel something, then what’s the point of writing at all?

    • Ho-Rah
      October 10, 2011 at 8:22 PM #

      I just got my first job. Before I sent hundreds of resumes and applications to various places, strangely enough I couldn’t get one job interview. Until I eliminated the ‘School for the Deaf’ then the first application I got it. Now I’m finally out of SSI.
      Once employers hire deaf people more they’ll realize they’re saving money too!

  5. chillax
    October 4, 2011 at 1:08 AM #

    To those who are all butthurt over this, remember that this top 10 list is tongue-in-cheek.

    Your tax dollars are going to worse things than helping some students get their party on. You are helping to fund crazy right wingers to close down Planned Parenthood. That disgusts me more than letting some deaf people buy alcohol and cigs. Heck, just open your newspaper. I guarantee you will find something worse than partying college students that your tax dollars are funding.

    Your taxes are helping me get an education without crippling debts and have a little fun along with buying the necessities and putting some of my SSI towards my room and board.

    So, please remove the stick from your ass and chuckle at this and move on. Not worth getting your uppity panties into a twist.Put that energy you’re using getting offended by this towards a better cause like helping protect Planned Parenthood (which is more than just abortions, fyi. It provides affordable health care for low-income women and a safe haven for those who feel like they cannot go to their doctors or do not want their family know about an issue they may have)


    • A.M.
      October 4, 2011 at 1:15 AM #

      “Your taxes are helping me get an education without crippling debts and have a little fun along with buying the necessities and putting some of my SSI towards my room and board.”

      That’s awesome and all…but some people ARE going into debt to get their education here. Not all Gallaudet students have SSI.

      This whole debate about taxes and SSI is really never ending and for another time and place.

      • ZANE
        October 4, 2011 at 1:24 AM #

        You acknowledged that it was a humor piece, and also published by a student organization. Why would you pick up a pitchfork and call for blood?

        The author didn’t even intend to piss off people with the article. Bet you that she just wanted to cause wry laughs and rolling eyes instead of frothing-at-the-mouth madness.

      • Nineteen
        October 5, 2011 at 8:19 PM #

        I’m a deaf student here, but VR won’t cover me. I have SSI, but that isn’t enough. I’ll have loans to pay off after I graduate.

        Not everyone here at Gally who’s deaf is spoiled rotten by SSI.

    • anonymous
      October 4, 2011 at 1:41 AM #

      Okay, tax issues aside, whether this is supposed to be funny or not aside, it simply makes Gallaudet look like the students don’t give a flip about anything but partying. And while I agree partying is a ritual part of college life, the world looks at Gallaudet University as the only Deaf college in America, and I know my friends (who have NO association to/with Gallaudet, or ASL, or Deaf culture whatsoever) were appalled when they read the article. So I know that a hearing person not related to Gallaudet would lose all respect for the university and the people who are supporting this crap.

  6. Char
    October 4, 2011 at 1:55 AM #

    It’s obviously sarcastic humor. Just meant to be laughed at. It’s a joke. Jokes are allowed in the paper.

  7. L2Troll (Learn to Troll)
    October 4, 2011 at 2:08 AM #

    Click the name to view what we all should do right now.

  8. Stirring the pot
    October 4, 2011 at 2:38 AM #

    I usually don’t like to jump in on discussions that are fiery, but… why not?

    Like it or not, SSI is a really big part of deaf culture. I really don’t want to play the “you have to be deaf to understand” card, but if you don’t understand that, you don’t understand deaf people. You don’t know the feeling of being discriminated and oppressed by society on the basis of your hearing. So if the government hands me some money to make up for that, hell, I’m gonna take it.

    I understand we are on a pedestal, being the only deaf university. But this is normal college student behavior, why should we pretend we’re all a bunch of goody-goodies that practice good financial decisions? When we are just like any other college student in America.

    BTW, Zane, you’re hilarious.

  9. Meredith
    October 4, 2011 at 6:59 AM #

    I’m confused. Why all the comments about taxpayer money? That seems to imply you should have a right to dictate what other people do. In a country where we don’t imprison dissidents, that doesn’t happen. Whether or not you agree with what someone does with their SSI is irrelevant. They have the right to self-determination, and can spend it how they choose. Just as I don’t complain when my taxes go to support local schools even though I don’t have children, I don’t complain here either. Part of being an American citizen is paying taxes and not getting to say what is done with them except by voting. You DO vote, right?

  10. Trevor
    October 4, 2011 at 8:34 AM #

    Wow, so many complaints about deaf people using some of their SSI money for a bottle of alcohol ($100 max?), and no mention of the billions in Iraq, billions in Afghanistan, billions in No Child Left Behind, billions in supporting our ex-Congressmen who are no longer lobbying…sad. On the other hand, SSI is running out due to the baby boomers starting to apply for it. More people needing it, less people paying it, SSI won’t exist when I need it in 40-50 years. Also, last time I checked, many deaf find it offensive to be called disabled, and yet they accept disability pay. I know, I’m not fully supporting my school and adopted culture. But some of these people raise good points. Its just too bad they don’t put as much energy into protesting against the trillions being sent aroudn the world to support governments who would never think of being democratic.

  11. liane
    October 5, 2011 at 5:47 PM #

    Thank you so much for uncensoring this and restoring my faith in the Gallaudet or BnB administration again 🙂 Thank you to everybody who showed support, told your friends, and wrote letters about the censorship. I don’t think this could have happened if the community didn’t speak up about how they felt about censorship.

    I hope that they understand now that we refuse to allow censorship at Gallaudet ever.

    P.S. this is HILARIOUS. The SATIRE (that’s what it is, not truth!) is over the top but that’s what makes it so hilarious!

  12. what?
    October 6, 2011 at 11:41 AM #

    As an RIT student for two years, y’all should check out their REPORTERS magazine. They insult their president (putting President Destler on the front page in a woman’s clothes) and they make comments about alcohol, drugs, and sex all of the time in a satirical way. They even have a PORN issue.

    In other words, this article is actually expressing MILD sarcasm/parody. This is just one article, and one article never represents the entire university correctly. The recent article Washington Post published is horribly inaccurate and nobody is making remarks about that. Sheesh.

    Lastly, this is a college-level article meant to entertain people who enjoy college humor.

  13. Jeff
    October 17, 2011 at 11:18 AM #

    Don’t depend on SSI/SSDI too much. Remmy, SSI is not only for deaf people. SSI helps people with disabilities, too. If we use SSI too much, more retired people will be forced to come back to work or america will be broke in few years if we continue depends on SSI. Thats why obama encourage more disabled people to work again if they are able to work. Not just stay at home and live with parents or being lazy.

  14. Jennifer
    June 2, 2012 at 7:29 PM #

    At some point, the SSI/SSD will run out, so we all better buck up and stop wasting our Government money on unnecessary things or whatever. I may not be one of those who drink alcohol, smoke cigarrettes, or go partying, but I do admit I bought too many books, etc. with that SSI/SSD money and giving some money away when I should be using it for my room, food, and transportation, and for paying for my tuition, and other bills, such as phone and medical bills, as I don’t have any VR support, either.

    At least, I learned my lesson, and moved on, got myself a job, stopped taking things for granted, and stopped complaining about it. I learned to feel good about myself after finishing my assignments, exercising, working my butt off, and giving a helping hand to others in need, rather than slouching around and feeling sorry for myself. I, much, rather smile and say good morning each day and enjoy each day of my life while I am still in this world. 🙂

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