Winter Blues

As a southern girl from Charlotte, NC, my first Northeastern winter came as a shock to me last year. I had to buy my first puffy winter coat–and scarves became a necessity, rather than a cute fashion statement.

Back home, school was cancelled if there was even a chance of snow–and if a couple of flakes did fall, they usually melted before the first snowballs were thrown. It rarely gets colder than 30 degrees in Charlotte–so, before coming to Brown, my winter gear consisted of little more than a few sweaters and jackets.

While the first few freezing fall and winter days were a fun novelty for me, I also found that it’s easy to feel blue when you’re used to this being your inclement winter weather (note the Carolina blue skies and light dusting of snow on the ground that cause most North Carolinians to stay off the roads all day):

and instead wake up to this gray, bleak, hideous winter:

But fellow sun-lovers: don’t fret. I’ve found foolproof ways to beat those winter blues.

1. BUY A WINTER COAT

 

 

The coat you wore in the South or West Coast will not cut it here. Take it from a stubborn southerner who thought she could make it the whole winter with her old coat… get a warm af coat, like yesterday.

2. On that note, load up on as much fuzzy shit as you possibly can

 

 

I’m talking blankets, robes, Snuggies, sweatshirts, earmuffs, etc. Then put them all on at once and proceed to be hugged by everyone who passes by you.

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Dining Halls, an Official Ranking (and Not At All a Completely Biased List I Made Up)

BREAKFAST:

Weekdays: Ratty or V-dub (because you don’t have much of an option)

Andrews doesn’t open until lunch, and the Blue Room will drain all of your points, so your best bet for weekday breakfast is either the Ratty or the V-dub.

Both have omelets made-to-order, cereal, fruit, and all the other breakfast essentials. But even though the waffle maker at the V-dub is way underrated, who really has the time to walk all the way to North campus before morning classes? Plus, for some reason, the Ratty’s coffee is much superior to the V-dub’s.

 

Weekends: ANDREWS! (or Blue Room)

Nothing beats Andrews Commons brunch so please don’t try to fight me on this. The granola bowls make you feel like a beacon of health, even though we both know you poisoned your body the night before–and the breakfast burritos are so worth the line. You can put TATER TOTS in your breakfast burritos. What more could a hungover college student ask for?

But if you’re not feelin’ the walk over to Pembroke or don’t want to wait until 11 for breakfast at Andrews to open, Blue Room muffins are always a good call–plus the weekend is the only time you can use meal credits there, so you might as well take advantage. Blue Room also has way better coffee than Andrews.

LUNCH:

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Here’s What You Should be for Halloween


Fellow Brunonians, the time has come for everyone’s favorite weekend of the semester: Halloweekend. And that means it’s time to start thinking about Halloween costumes. Well, actually, the time came about a week ago–so you’re starting to run out of time. But fear not, we’re here to help with costume inspo for every type of Halloween partygoer.

If you’re feeling lazy:

If you’re not about to blow money on something you’re only going to wear once and don’t want to spend more than five minutes getting ready, we can help you make due with what you already have in your closet. Throw on a pair of jeans and a flannel and you’re an instant lumberjack! Wear some dark reds and black (and maybe a touch of red lipstick?) and you’re a lazygirl vampire. And since you’re a Brown student, you probably already have everything you need for a hippie costume! Ripped or flared jeans, tie-dye, florals, and Birkenstocks will do the trick.

If you’re what the kids call ~extra~:

You’re not about to go unnoticed this halloweekend, that’s for sure… You either want to show a little (or a lot) of skin in an over-the-top cop or firefighter costume–or shine bright in a glitzy angel or devil costume. Or you can just take a page out of the Mean Girls handbook by wearing lingerie with animal ears–I won’t judge.

If you roll with a squad:

You’ll wear a group costume or no costume at all, so you better make sure to get a bomb costume for you and your whole squad. For a super easy Hogwarts costume, you and your friends can wear pleated skirts/black pants, sweaters, button-down shirts, and ties. If you think Harry Potter costumes are a bit played out, why not go as your favorite Pokémon characters or as the Scooby Doo gang?

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If Brown Study Spaces Were Celebs

The study spaces at Brown have personalities as distinct as the students reading, solving, and mingling in them. While some are socialites and partiers, some are stress-filled and anxiety-inducing, and others are just plain lazy. So if you’re a freshman looking for the best places to crack open a book, look no further. By comparing them to celebrities, this post will obviously tell you everything you need to know about the campus’s various study spaces.

Sci Li stacks: 2007 Britney Spears

This one is obvious. If you find yourself in the Sci Li stacks, you’re probably on the verge of stress-shaving your head. I honestly don’t know why anyone would go to the Sci Li unless you have five exams and a paper due the next day. This place gives me major anxiety.

Okay, I’m being hyperbolic, but only a little. The stacks are a sad, sad place.

If you can get one of the closed study rooms in the Sci Li basement (you can reserve one of those room for 3 hours max. with the Sci-Li staff at the Help Desk in the basement!), or if you’re a fan of the study spaces scattered throughout the building, maybe you’ll like the Sci-Li more than I do – but, seriously, beware of the Sci-Li.

The Rock: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

The Rock is an easy choice because of its variety of study spaces. You can do group work in the “coffee shop” area in the first floor lobby, as well as in the many (!) study rooms on the first floor, fourth floor, and level A. Solo work can be done on the first floor in the main area, the stacks, or in the absolute quiet section of level A. The Rock is also superior to the Sci Li because of its chiseled pecks, 8-pack, and biceps.

Andrews Commons Study Rooms: Taylor Swift

Andrews Commons is a place to eat, socialize, and scope out cute athletes. If you say you’re going there to study, you’re probably lying. But TBH, that’s okay because under the T Swift school of thought, any social event is virtually unmissable–and passing up a chance to meet your potential next S.O. is a crime. Just don’t go here thinking you’re going to get real work done, when you’re really just going to drool into your curry over 24-year-old hockey players.

The study room above the dining hall is usually silent (and actually silent! Unlike! Arnold!), but, seriously, it’s hard to stay motivated – especially when Andrews is a million miles away from everything and you just wanna go home. If distance from your dorm is what you need to keep you outta home sweet bed, you might want to give Andrews a go.

Arnold Study Lounge: Kim Kardashian

Another study space where hardly any studying gets done is Arnold Lounge. Arnold is ostensibly a silent study space, but no one respects that. This is more like a freshman stomping ground for socializing, meeting friends, and stopping by the vending machines for Vitamin Water chasers (and Ben and Jerry’s ice cream!). Like Kim K, Arnold Study Lounge goers are always down to party, so I highly recommend going to Arnold if you want to meet fellow Keeney dwellers, but again, don’t go here to do your CS homework or Econ problem sets.

The Blue Room/ Faunce: Miley Cyrus as Hannah Montana

This truly is “the best of both worlds” when it comes to study spaces. Looking to socialize yet also seem like you’re getting work done? The Blue Room is the place to go. It’s always filled with students eating subpar sushi and pretending to look busy on their laptops while actually taking a Buzzfeed quiz about what flavor latte they would be based on their outfit choices (not that I do this, I just heard some people like that kind of thing).

Have more serious work and need to focus? Faunce usually has open study spaces that are much more quiet suitable for intense studying (like Leung Gallery the floor above the Blue Room, or the study spaces in the basement below the Blue Room).

Your bed: Bruno Mars

If you can actually get work done horizontally, I respect you infinitely. For the rest of us, saying you’re going to do work in bed is the equivalent of saying “I’m going to take a long nap, but I don’t want to seem lazy.” Sometimes, you might even get into your bed thinking you’re going to read – or even write a paper. But once you sit in your comfy bed, all motivation goes out the window, and you become about as lazy as Bruno Mars. Your bed is the place to go when you’re in the mood for a Netflix marathon, but it’s not the best study locale.


What Kanye West Song Best Describes Your Concentration?

In the words of Kanye West, “you may be talented, but you’re not Kanye West.” And he’s not wrong. If you’re like me, you likely feel that Kanye West is the voice of our generation. Or, at least a voice of a generation. He has a big personality, and he refuses to be ignored. I’m pretty sure that he’s actually the reason why Taylor Swift became famous, but you didn’t hear that from me. Even if you hate the dude, you have to admit that he has talent, style, and a major influence in today’s pop culture. Kanye’s music permeates all aspects of our lives, and I’m going to argue that his music even represents our concentrations here at Brown.


Economics or Applied Mathematics (or, even better, both): Gold Digger

If you’re concentrating in econ or APMA, you’re probably on the road to making the big bucks. I’m not (necessarily) saying you’re a gold digger, but you ain’t messin’ with no humanities concentrations… Let’s face it: you put the gold in Goldman Sachs.

Computer Science: Stronger
If you’re a CS concentrator, I salute you. If you can survive these four years, you can survive anything. Personally, the idea of coding until 2 am on a nightly basis sounds deadly, but in the wise words of Mr. West, “that that don’t kill me can only make me stronger.”

TAPS: Flashing Lights

Let’s face it: you love being in the spotlight. You’re probably a little quirky and also hate this post because you want to argue that you would be better defined by a song from Dear Evan Hanson.

History: I Love Kanye

I’m not saying you’re stuck in the past, but you probably “miss the old Kanye” (but I mean, who doesn’t?). It’s tempting to look to the past with nostalgia, but, hey, we gotta make the best of what we have now and try to learn from past mistakes – which is why I stopped watching horror films at night with the lights off (so many regrets).


Gender and Sexuality Studies: Power

Any feminist would agree that “no one man should have all that power,” and if you’re a Gender and Sexuality Studies concentrator, you’re definitely an advocate for women’s rights. In this song, Kanye West feels like a powerful man. I’d like to see my #GirlPower advocates knock him down a few pegs.

BEO: School Spirit
If you’re a BEO concentrator, you probably like to have fun. You never miss a Whiskey Wednesday, you dabble in darties, and you might even go to more than one football game a year (that is, if you’re not on the team). Regardless, you definitely embody the type of school spirit that Kanye references in this anthem.

English: Bound 2

As an English concentrator myself, I chose this song not only because the lyrics are pure poetry (and because Kim looks like an absolute goddess in the music video), but because we English majors are definitely “bound to fall in love.” Whether you’re googly-eyed over your Love Stories professor, or simply inspired by the many(!) books you’ve read about love, you’re undoubtedly a hopeless romantic. Maybe one day, if you’re as lucky as Kimye, you’ll find your perfect match.

Undecided: All Falls Down


If you haven’t decided on your concentration, this song says it all. The woman that Kanye describes in this song “has no idea what she’s doin’ in college.” The concentration she thought she wanted to focus on apparently “makes no money,” so she really can’t decide what to study. But if you’re still undecided, don’t fret! It might take some time, but you’ll eventually figure it out. And if you don’t, you could always stay at Brown and maintain all those huge tents the administration loves to put on the quads so much.