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Student tapping their one card however the light is red
All Fun & Satire

At the end of the day, either my OneCard is acting up or I am

By Zarmminaa Rehman

The university experience is never all that it is made to be. First of all, living in residence? At Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU)? Ha, as if. Attending parties? Not in this economy. Affording on-campus food? The cheapest thing is a small $4 coffee competing with the size of my OneCard. 

Maybe my only solace could have been getting that amazing student card picture and proudly showing it off to family and friends. Yet again, I was met with disappointment. 

For one, due to COVID-19, there wasn’t even a cool studio I could go to and get my photo professionally done. Instead, I had to awkwardly pose against a wall in the bathroom—it had the best lighting of course—and send in that godforsaken picture to be put on my student card for the rest of my university career. Talk about bummer after bummer.

Using my strong intellect, arriving on campus allowed me to quickly realize that it was probably better to keep this pesky card handy (literally and figuratively) at all times. Opening doors, printing documents at the library, even paying at campus food stops—with their expensive pastries and coffee—could all be done with this “trusty” card.

“It was never a ‘you’ problem”

The only reasonable answer to this dilemma was sporting the card around my neck, displayed by a clear case in the least fashionable way, whilst also becoming a walking advertisement for my university. 

TMU had decided that they were actually going to name their student cards the ‘OneCard’ and that may have been the only true effort they decided to make. Though this stupid card has to be used to get in and out of several buildings in and around campus—sometimes even certain classes—it works only about 78 per cent of the time. 

After some much needed research on various Reddit threads and Facebook groups, I found out that the OneCard staff would put all the OneCard numbers of students, staff and faculty in a random generator at the end of each week where dozens of cards would just simply become inactive. Apparently this is to save on updating the threshold limit of acceptable “tappees” on the card sensors, so it was never a “you” issue. Rest assured knowing that you were being conspired against since the very beginning. 

At first glance, if you’ve ever seen me tap again and again on the card sensor, you might have thought, “look at that person holding eight things in one hand but can’t figure out how to tap a sensor to open a door,” but joke’s on you, I actually possess the skill of masterfully opening doors.

“I am just trying to get to my lecture on time”

However, it’s just that the doors of Kerr Hall do not possess the skill to masterfully open when needed. I’m sure that, like me, many people facing a similar struggle would just wait for someone to exit or gingerly approach the door so the group behind you can open the door instead. 

With the swift increase of people on campus this school year, it is easier than ever to avoid using your OneCard for opening doors. But, every so often, I face a door that won’t budge. 

For those of you reading, please help your fellow TMU student get inside. I am just trying to get to my lecture on time.

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