BlogDH’s S/NC checklist


Today is the deadline to change the grading methods for your classes. (Get on Banner right now if you’ve been meaning to change but haven’t yet! You have until 5 p.m.) Since it’s the one thing about Brown academics that is apparently written in stone, you should probably carefully consider how intense you want this semester to be when deciding whether or not to take that class S/NC.

Check everything below that applies to you, and our generator will let you know whether taking that fourth class for a grade really is a good idea.

Should you take that fourth class S/NC?

I’m taking two (or more!) classes for my concentration.
I’m taking on leadership positions like it’s junior year of high school.
I just started Gilmore Girls on Netflix.
I spend more time in the SciLi/Rock/BarHo/CIT than not.
I’m off meal-plan …
… and I have no idea what to do with the kholrabi from my Market Share.
I’m also working a job.
I’m starting to realize that I really won’t care enough at the end of the semester to write that final essay about a geobiochemical-linguistic analysis of late-post-structuralist agrarian economies and what Foucault had to say about them.
Sometimes I, you know, like to have fun.
Like … really have fun.
Like the GCB is my idea of a night off.
I’m living off campus.
Living off campus is not as glamorous as people made it out to be.
I’m doing a thesis.
I’ve already had to choose between the schoolwork-friends-health triangle.
I’m taking five classes.
I’m a science concentrator taking that senior seminar in the humanities and oh dear god the reading doesn’t end.
I’m a humanities concentrator taking that one I-shoud-probably-take-a-science-class-’cause-it’s-good-for-me class.
“Do I have mono?” is something you’ve wondered multiple times.
I’ve already pulled an all-nighter.
I’ve already pulled multiple all-nighters.
I’ve napped in a school building that wasn’t a dorm.
I’m currently using this quiz to procrastinate an assignment 

A previous version of this quiz was published in September 2014 by BlogDailyHerald.


A real Martian reviews “The Martian”


Above: not a Martian

I mean, where do I even begin? You all have been pretty nosy this week, what with the finding water last Monday. And NASA releasing all those pictures! I mean some solitude would be nice, really. Just because you all like looking your house up on Google Earth doesn’t mean you get to involve other planets in your sick voyeurism. We didn’t ask to be number one at the box office this weekend. We are a species which values privacy, and if you can’t give us that, at the very least, accuracy please.

First of all, Matt Damon is not a Martian. He just isn’t. Being on Mars does not make you a Martian any more than visiting China makes you Chinese. And if you want to call Mars a, “hostile environment”, maybe stop trying to sell planetary colonization efforts to the public (cough cough NASA/SpaceX/MarsOne). No one is making you come. No one is making you stay.

That said, the performances were pretty good. I would listen to Jessica Chastain tell me to do anything. Donald Glover and Kristen Wiig actually killed the high budget drama. Although, I’m not entirely sure I count this as a drama. Matt Damon did say the words, “I’m going to have to science the shit out of this”, so let’s take the category of drama with a grain of salt. Who wrote this thing? He also talks to his plants a lot.

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Pollerbears: What is the quietest space on campus?

Even the freshmen must have figured this out by now: Brown students create quiet study spaces where there are no laws mandating silence, and talk and chew food where signs tell us to do otherwise. As rule-breakers and trendsetters, we don’t care that the Rock’s “Absolute Quiet Room” has a sign prohibiting laptop use or that the Leung Gallery was actually meant to be an upper Blue Room social space. We talk or don’t talk as we please! We type where we want. Except for the Hay; everyone respects the Hay.

Rules no one ever has followed

A photo posted by BlogDailyHerald (@blogdailyherald) on

Particularly laughable is the SciLi’s attempt to tell us what decibel level to speak at in specific areas. I have no idea how many decibels normal speaking voice or whispering is, but I do know that the 00 decibel space is definitely supposed to be quieter than the 75 decibel space. This never happens.

So, we at BlogDH are here to poll the student body on what actually is the quietest space on campus. Silence etiquette is definitely important — it’s basic manners — albeit hard to figure out.

Happy midterms season!

What's the most quiet of Brown's quiet spaces?

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March Like a Penguin: Tips on dominating the unheated dorm


The weather’s changing, folks. We’re transitioning from the season of waking up plastered to our sheets by sweat with five fans surrounding our beds to that awkward season where we’re still waking up plastered to our sheets, now paralyzed by frigid dorm rooms. It might seem petty to complain, especially since it’s going to get a lot worse in the coming months (brace yourselves, freshmen from California), but at least when hardcore winter hits we’ll all have reliably cozy refuges (a.k.a. heated rooms) from the cold.

If you’re like me and live in a currently unheated dorm, your room could be even colder than the great outdoors. A certain sequence of events might sound familiar to you: Your alarm goes off. You can’t get out of bed. No, you’re not tired. In fact, you’d really like to brush your teeth and eliminate your abominable morning breath, or make yourself a cup of coffee. But every time you extend a limb–nay, a finger–or lift your head out from underneath the blankets in which you’re hibernating, BOOM. Antarctica hits. Every few minutes you’ll try again, give up, withdraw back into your blankets like a crab into its shell. This could last for up to an hour before you muster the courage to face the chill.

cat in bed meme

Such a constant state of cold discomfort can make EVERYTHING more difficult, from taking a shower to studying. Especially compared to the phenomenal warmth of a comforter, the frigid walk to the bathroom can seem like an impossible task. And until Brown does turn on the heat in all buildings, here are some tips for marching like a penguin (a.k.a. continuing to perform basic daily tasks without hating life, Brown, and New England):

  1. Keep a sweater next to your bed. Now, you might not want to wear your warmest, fuzziest sweater to bed. That, added to your quilt, comforter, sheets, throw blanket, and insulating aluminum foil, might make you feel a little overheated. So, for the dreaded moment when you need to leave the bed, ALWAYS have a sweater an arm’s reach away. If that isn’t enough, you could put the next day’s change of clothes by your bed as well. That way you can change under the covers and never have to subject your poor body to the chill.
  1. Wear your best pair of socks. Always. It’s scientifically proven that keeping your feet warm helps keep the rest of your body warm as well. Alright, that may not be entirely true. But it IS true that your feet, on the periphery of your body, suffer prominently from the cold. That brings me to tip number two: always wear a nice thick pair of socks. If you only have flimsy athletic socks, wear two pairs at once. Worried about having to take them off to put on flip-flops when you have to walk to the bathroom? Don’t worry, socks and sandals are in. Or at the very least, whoever spots you between your room and the bathroom (suitemate, hallway go-er, etc.) probably won’t look anything like Ryan Gosling and, more importantly, won’t really care.
  1. Tea, coffee, hot chocolate. A hot cup of anything can be both a great motivator for braving the cold and an added protection against it. If you’re lucky enough to have a roommate, suitemate, housemate, or friend who is simply a better person than you and offers to bring you a cup of tea, definitely take advantage. With that kind of luck, you can even stay under the covers until you get your tea, then carry it around your room as your very own weapon against the cold.
  1. Changing: a systematic approach. It’s that unfortunate time of day when you have to change into your work clothes, or your gym clothes, or whatever. No, your boss said, PJ pants are not appropriate for when you’re sitting at your desk. Change your clothes systematically: leave your pants on while you change your shirt and vice versa. Keep as much of you as warm as possible for as long as possible.
  1. The hunger strategy. Ok, so you’ve been hiding under the covers, and you really need to leave them to study for the ten midterms you have this week. But studying isn’t exactly the most appealing activity. Eating, on the other hand, is a much better motivator. Think about the pizza you really want from Andrew’s, or that warm Blue Room muffin. It’s much easier to put off working than it is to put off eating. Then, when you go out to get food, bring study materials with you. Try to study in the Ratty, or head to the library after a meal. The SciLi may be drafty, but it’s definitely better than your dorm.
  1. Ripping off the Band-Aid. That whole cycle I talked about, when you venture a limb outside of the covers and immediately freak out? Try not to do it. In the mornings, leap out of your bed like you’re late for lunch with Taylor Swift. It’ll feel like jumping into a cold pool: over in a heartbeat.

Luckily, the heat is supposed to be turned on by this Friday (WOOOHOOOOO!!!!!), but for now, hopefully these tips will help you power through the next few days. Stay warm, Brunonia!

happy feet gif

Images via, via, and via.

Fall@Brown: Haunted House Lineup


Growing up in the Philadelphia suburbs, I pride myself on having averaged a good six to eight haunted house visits each Halloween season. Whether it was clowns, skeletons, or the ridiculous cost of admission, I traveled to abandoned asylums, run-down prisons, and revamped cornfields all with the intention of crying like a baby being terrified. Well, October is here, and if you’ve got the haunted house bug, here’s the lineup of Rhode Island haunted houses to remind that there are things scarier than CS:

Fear Town

Seekonk Speedway 1710 Fall River Ave., Seekonk, MA 02771

  • The Gist: Fear Town is an outdoor haunted path located in the woods by Seekonk Speedway that takes you through abandoned buildings and across uneven forest terrain.
  • Distance from Campus: 7.3 miles
  • Cost: $16
  • Estimated Uber Fare: $9-12
  • Horror Tropes Used: The woods, abandoned buildings.
  • Bonus: Fear Town boasts the highest Yelp rating (4.8 stars) in RI and the lowest cost/Uber fare, meaning this one is mostly likely to be your budget’s favorite attraction.

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Students who do cool things: Olivia Pecini RISD ’16 and Maddie Dennis RISD ’17, co-founders of Muse’s Milk

Screen Shot 2015-10-04 at 6.23.42 PM

Meet Olivia Pecini RISD ’16 and Maddie Dennis RISD ’17, co-founders of Muse’s Milk, a website that highlights “women working in various creative fields—to share their origin stories, promote their work, and offer readers advice from the women making the art world spin.” The talented RISD Animation-majors themselves have interviewed a range of professional women from production designers and art directors to writers and fashion photographers. I sat down, BlogDH-interviewer-to-Muse’s-Milk-interviewers (sooo meta), to learn more about the development and growth of the site. Check out the interview below if only to be reminded that our neighbors down the Hill are pretty f*cking cool.

BlogDH: In your own words, what is Muse’s Milk and how did the idea develop?

Olivia: It started back in January when Maddie and I realized that a lot of people at RISD don’t really have female artists as inspiration. Even we realized that in naming our favorite artists, most of them weren’t women.

Maddie: We’re both animation majors and the field is very male-dominated. Essentially, we wanted the site to be a place to celebrate women working in creative fields, whether it’s visual arts or music. It was an opportunity to poke around for interesting women in fields we want to be in.

BlogDH: Is there a story behind the name?

Olivia: Essentially we had no idea what to call it and we were coming up with names for a month, and constant streams of lousy titles. So then I asked my friend who’s an art history major for literally any reference that might be fitting. It was true desperation. She sent me a list, and there was this one that was really bizarre— “the muse’s milk.” Supposedly the breast milk of a muse will give you endless creativity.

Maddie: As soon as you told me about it you said, “this is pretty weird, but what do you think?” And I was like “oh yeah.” (laughs). I think we wanted something that made people question, and having a name like that will at least make people look at our site a little longer. We kind of went from there. It’s not a dramatic story, it just happened!

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