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Stanford Parents Thread

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Replies to: Stanford Parents Thread

  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Re: the bike discussion above. I wanted to update and say that S has now had 2 bikes stolen on campus: one this school year and one last. His bike was parked at his row house and, unfortunately, u-locked to itself because the bike rack was full. A person who lives in the house witnessed the theft (just a few weeks ago) and actually asked the thieves what they were doing. The two men ran with the bike, threw it in a truck and took off. Bike thefts are a real problem.
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  • gladmomgladmom 739 replies71 threadsRegistered User Member
    My son has accounts with both BOA and the Stanford Credit Union. We wouldn't have done the credit union, except that the Credit Union gave him a credit card and BOA would not. They really want to give him one now, but, too late! We live in the midwest, and it has been very useful to be able to put money into his BOA account in our local branch.

    My son has had a bike on campus all 3 years, including 2 summers, has always U-locked it to something, and has never had it stolen. He has never even heard a friend or acquaintance say that their bike had been stolen. Certainly there is some bike theft, just like on all campuses, but it is certainly no worse at Stanford.
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  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Bike theft is a big problem and students and parents are told this at orientation. I am not trying to disparage Stanford. Stanford is wonderful; however, there is obviously a ring or rings of bike thieves who prey on Stanford students and school officials are the first to admit they have not succeeded in ameliorating the problem. Whether or not it is worse than other schools is not the issue; the point is do NOT invest in an expensive bike for your student.
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  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    From the Stanford Bike Shop website:
    "Is bicycle theft a big problem at Stanford?
    Yes! Bicycles are the most stolen objects on campus ..."
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  • zenkoanzenkoan 1106 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    mamae, sorry your son's bike got stolen. But he didn't have it locked to anything, and that makes it infinitely more susceptible to theft, obviously. If the rack right next to his Row house was full, he could have locked it to another rack not far from the house and walked back, or brought it inside. The only people I know who've had their bikes stolen were also people who didn't have them locked. The bike shop and the staff here are constantly reminding people to lock up. Since everyone rides a bike here, it's just too easy for someone to get on an unlocked one and ride off since there's nothing whatsoever suspicious-looking about that.
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  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Zenkoan, I absolutely concede that my son is not by any means "security conscious" and his two bikes have no doubt been relatively easy marks. Regardless, though, parents and students need to understand that bike theft is a recognized issue on the campus. Having had the most recent theft witnessed, we know that the culprits were several men in a truck driving around campus in the middle of the night. On the bright side, NOTHING other than my son's bike(s) have been stolen. His laptop, longboards, books, etc. have all been left at one time or another in situations where they could easily have been stolen. To the best of my knowledge, the problem is limited to bike theft.
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  • zenkoanzenkoan 1106 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    No question bike theft is a problem here, mamae, and I sure hope I didn't come across as blaming the victim. I'm also just trying to make sure parents realize that their kids need to lock their bikes up all the time (especially overnight), which avoids the problem nearly 100%. It just takes a second to do it once you get used to the U-lock. I also think the security pack from the bike shop is worth looking into; it stops people from easily taking off tires and seats.
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  • phantasmagoricphantasmagoric 2168 replies32 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    But he didn't have it locked to anything, and that makes it infinitely more susceptible to theft, obviously. If the rack right next to his Row house was full, he could have locked it to another rack not far from the house and walked back, or brought it inside.

    Come on, zenkoan, you've been at Stanford long enough to know that this isn't realistic. For one, very often the Row houses literally have no bike racks at all; and even the railings, etc. that people will sometimes chain their bikes to are full. Locking your bike at another house isn't realistic for a few reasons: their racks are likely full, they're farther away, and it's definitely weird to be chaining your bike up with the real residents of the house also locking/unlocking their bikes and staring at you (wondering why you're chaining your bike up at their house and then walking over to yours; this would likely cause problems). Bringing it inside is not a realistic option; dorm staff will get annoyed at you if you keep your bike in common areas (someone my freshman year tried to do this, and the custodian made her take it out). And if you live on the second or third floor, it's impractical to carry it upstairs, especially if you have a roommate who doesn't want your bike in the room (or there's not space for it) and/or if you live in a row house where the stairs are narrow and make it hard to carry anything large up... and if your bike is heavy. I've lived on the Row and in the dorms for two years each and know that it's just not feasible.

    The real problem is that there are too few bike rack spaces, and sometimes people have no choice but to lock it up by itself - that's why it's so common at every dorm, at every academic building, etc. for hordes of bikes to be locked to nothing, because there's no space.

    And even if you do lock it to something, there's still a chance that someone will steal one of your wheels/gears/chain/bell/whatever.

    I've actually had a few friends who had their bikes stolen when they were locked to themselves, and one who had it stolen when it was locked to a bike rack. The prevalence of bikes with one or more wheels missing on campus, still locked to the bike rack, is evidence that you can be stolen from even if the bike is locked securely to something.

    mamae, I agree that people need to recognize the problem more. It seems Stanford isn't really doing much to fix it - students have complained that we need more bike racks, but those in charge of landscaping complain there isn't enough space and/or it's ugly to put them in certain places. I'd also say that the majority of thefts that occur are not other students stealing the bike (there's a good chance they could get caught), but rather people from other areas coming on campus to "harvest" students' bikes. I wonder if Stanford could enforce a stricter penalty for bike theft.
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  • zenkoanzenkoan 1106 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    It's true we could always use more bike racks. However, I can't even count the number of times I've seen bikes just standing there unlocked to anything--even themselves--with bike racks *right there* with open spaces. That's just lazy. I agree that we also need to prevent theft of bike parts, which is why I encourage getting the security pack. (I splurged on a really good bike, and added the security pack, and my bike is entirely intact thanks to those cables and pins.) Locking your bike up religiously, even if you have to walk a little sometimes to find a rack space, and getting the security pack, are the best theft deterrents--much better than making your bike look crazy at one of those stations they have at the beginning of fall quarter, by the way. If your bike is easy to grab and throw in a truck, eventually it's going to get grabbed, even if it looks "distinctive". I agree with phantasmagoric that the vast majority of the theft seems to be committed by non-Stanford-affiliated people, who come on campus expressly to swipe and resell the bikes. Maybe campus security should be keeping closer watch on trucks that come onto campus in the evening, but given the size of this place and how spread out the residences are, they may not be able to do that much more.
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  • phantasmagoricphantasmagoric 2168 replies32 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Yes, you're definitely right that many students are just lazy and don't lock their bike to something (instead just to itself). That's probably more commonly the reason for not locking the bike to something. But it's also often the case that there really is nothing to lock it to, and you have no choice but to lock it just to itself (I'm one of those people who locks it to something religiously and gets really nervous when I can't lock it to something). I don't know which group mamae's son falls under in this case.
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  • bluegrassgrlbluegrassgrl 50 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Hi! I appreciate the lesson in locking bikes up. I am taking my old bike which would increase in value exponentially if I had to replace it!

    On to more mundane questions- twin sheets for beds. I was told the XL Twin sheets are actually too big for the beds there and regular twin sheet sets work just fine.

    Confirmation?
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  • emgamacemgamac 308 replies1 threadsRegistered User Member
    Our D uses XL twin sheets and they are not too big.
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  • gladmomgladmom 739 replies71 threadsRegistered User Member
    My S uses XL sheets and they fit fine. Remember that most college mattresses are kinda thin, so the XL sheets aren't super tight or anything. You can get them for pretty cheap at JCPenney or Bed Bath & Beyond.
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  • DungareedollDungareedoll 920 replies66 threadsRegistered User Member
    I'm finding it difficult to find comforters that are twin XL. Can you use a regular twin comforter as long as you have the twin XL sheets?
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  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Dungareedoll, a regular twin sized comforter will fit. For those of you who will be flying rather than driving in with your student for orientation, I recommend the shop ahead program they have for college students at Bed Bath and Beyond, if they still offer it. It was a godsend for us. Re: bike discussion. I strongly agree the bike thieves are non-Stanford people. The police were called when a witness saw my student's bike being taken, and to my knowledge the police were not able to find the truck the thieves were driving anywhere on campus.
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  • DungareedollDungareedoll 920 replies66 threadsRegistered User Member
    Thank Mamae thats good news. Otherwise it would be slim pickings for comforters.

    Next question: Do a lot of kids have TV's in their rooms? Coming from NY I certainly can't bring one, but I'm debating as to wheter or not I should buy one when we get there. I just want to get a list together so I can be prepared.
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  • StanfordCSStanfordCS 1106 replies54 threads- Senior Member
    ^ I doubt Stanford's students have time to watch T.V.
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  • fairlightsfairlights 134 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    In the freshman dorm I stayed in during admit weekend, there were *so* many televisions in the students' rooms. Not every person had one, but I would say at least half did on the floor I saw. There was also a nice flatscreen in every dorm lounge I saw.

    I think people tend to gather in rooms with televisions, to watch favorite movies/shows/sports games together.
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  • mamaemamae 151 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    We did not buy a tv for our son (my thought was that he would not have time to watch). His roommate had one, though.
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  • ClowiebearClowiebear 397 replies39 threadsRegistered User Member
    plus nowadays you can watch everything online anyway so a tv isn't necessary to keep up.
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