Crunchy leaves to crushing solo cups: Fall then and now

As we approach the final month of the year, I realized that I dislike months ending in “-ber.” When did this happen? What is the common denominator here?

Fall. Autumn. Whatever.

Join me as I take a good, hard, overly-critical look at some aspects of Fall and see how the beautiful process of maturing has ruined and/or devalued them.

FALLen Leaves:

Then: As a kid, you may remember watching your parents exhibit god-like levels of self-control as you would throw your youthful body into the piles of raked leaves aka the fruits of their labor. Grabbing armfuls of leaves and throwing them into the air/at your siblings was truly joyous. Stepping on a leaf and hearing it crunch beneath your mighty child-sized light-up Kmart sneakers was incredible. You are powerful! Walking is no longer monotonous now that there’s a goal (crushing) and a soundtrack (crunching).

Quick! Someone call AFV!

Now: Ah, yes let me propel my aging body, with all it’s odd aches and markings (all diseased, as per WebMD) into this pile of dead-tree scraps and possibly upward-pointed sticks. Wet leaves, various creepy crawlies, DIRT–who wouldn’t want to catapult themselves into nature’s dumpster??? I was wearing a V-neck the other day and a leaf flew down my shirt. Making eye contact with a passerby as you proudly reveal the leaf you removed from your nonexistent cleavage is just so freakin’ seasonal. Now whenever I wear my knockoff Birkenstocks (#confusingweather) leaves stick to my socks (don’t judge me). Deliberately treading on crunchy leaves? Eh, if you step on a littered Solo cup it makes the same noise.

I feel so young and alive!

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Brown gets buffer: 5 more ways to work exercise into your (cold) day-to-day life

"I'm a star!" "I'm a star!" "I'm a star!" "Why did I sign up for this?"

“I’m a star!” “I’m a star!” “I’m a star!” “Why did I sign up for this?”

As the days get shorter and colder, it’s harder to find the time or energy to run outside or even make the trek to the closest gym. Yet, it is more important now than ever to stay active and energized, to help fight off sickness or the desire to hibernate. Luckily, you don’t need to go far out of your way to fit a workout into your busy schedule. Here are 5 more ways to work a little exercise into your (cold) day-to-day life:

Exercise 1: Shivering
Reps: Until you show signs of hypothermia? Recommended: 20-min sets.
Where/when: On your way to class, in the middle of the night, anytime. In the SciLi/CIT wind tunnel for the hardcore gym rats.
Muscle groups exercised: Full body cardio.
How to do it: As you may have learned in AP or IB Bio, when your core temperature falls, the body compensates by shivering, increasing heat production by rapid contraction/relaxation of muscles. Capitalize on this heat mechanism by walking around outside naked or in your underwear. Your body will respond by shivering, kicking those excess calories to the curb.

Exercise 2: Cough crunches
Reps: Until you throw up or get tackled and led to Health Services. Suggested: 20 coughs per set.
Where/when: Anytime, anywhere, preferably on other people.
Muscle groups exercised: Abs.
How to do it: Ever notice how your abs hurt after a good coughing fit? Capitalize on this by coughing a lot to get a good ab workout in. Each cough equals a crunch. Cough specifically on other people. Ignore the glare they’ll probably give you. You’re getting swole, and they’re just jealous. Plus, it’ll almost certainly help them discover your effective new exercise technique for themselves!

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The warmest places to hide this weekend

Do not be deceived by this week’s unseasonable warmth. If you’ve checked the forecast for this weekend, you know that it’s going to be really cold outside. Coping with the freezing weather is no easy task, so here’s my guide to some of the warmest spots on campus for those moments when you just can’t deal.

bio-med vents

10/10 would stand under.

The vents outside the Bio-Med Center. Ever wondered about those peculiar structures on the patio of the Bio-Med Center? To be honest, I’m not entirely sure of their purpose, though they definitely give off a ton of heat (especially the one closer to Brown Street). If you’re ever strolling on Meeting Street and feel like you might freeze to death, make a beeline for these vents. The air is super warm, and their alcove-like structures block most of the frigid wind.

pembroke hall vent

Yes, please.

Behind Pembroke Hall (vents part 2). Leaving a meeting in Smitty B and can’t handle the awful weather, or need that extra push to make it to Andrews? Stop by the back of Pembroke Hall, where you’ll find a gorgeous vent pumping out warm air like it’s nobody’s business. This particular vent’s unique shape is perfect for heating your entire body.

friedman auditorium

Who knew academia could be so HOT?

Friedman Auditorium, Metcalf Research Building. Despite its sleek design and its 210-seat capacity, the lecture hall in Metcalf is surprisingly cozy. Sure, snooping around an empty lecture hall on a weekend might seem a bit creepy, and sure, there’s no guarantee that the building will be unlocked, but if you’re able to sneak in, it’ll be worth it!

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