Don’t @ me: Concordia’s lighting is terrible

I get headaches the second I walk into the university

The Weeknd and I got one thing in common: The pressure of blinding light hovering over us. Graphic Joey Bruce

Picture this: You’re walking up the stairs of the Hall building because the escalators are still not working, and you get off on the seventh floor to see a disheveled human wearing sunglasses. 

“Indoors?” You think to yourself. “Are they hungover?” You shrug because it’s Concordia and you’ve seen stranger things take place in  the hallways—like rats at the bookstore back when the lockdown was lifted and rodents had settled in the building while the humans were quarantining. 

The reason I’ve started wearing sunglasses at Concordia is actually a pretty simple one: I find Concordia’s lighting to be unbearable. In 2011, Concordia switched from incandescent to fluorescent lighting in an attempt to increase energy efficiency. While an ecologically-friendly move, it wasn't a migraine-friendly one. Experts have found incandescent lighting to be the best option for migraines, and fluorescent lighting to be the worst because the latter flickers the most and the light hue is more blue than yellow. 

I don’t suffer from migraines, but I suffer from post-concussive headaches, and I believe the effects and causes to be quite similar. My doctor advised me to take vitamin B2 daily, which I do, and he advised me to walk around wearing sunglasses, which I refused to do for four years. The last thing introverts want is to stand out in a crowd. 

Back when I was a student at Vanier, I believed the lighting to be bearable. Maybe they were less aggressive, or maybe I’m just so sleep deprived now that my headaches have gotten worse. Either way, I’ve had enough of Concordia’s lighting. I can’t focus in class if my ears are ringing and my vision blurs every time I enter a brightly lit Concordia area, although I don’t have that problem in the metro. 

Metros, while being extremely bright, are lit by LED lights, which aren’t as bad for headaches as fluorescent lights since they don’t flicker at all. 

Sometimes I wonder if I’m exaggerating like everyone says I am, but my headaches are definitely real. So, I cope the only way I know how to: By walking around the university wearing cool sunglasses.