I understand that the title may have betrayed a few aspects of my identity— yes, I’m from Florida; yes, I was born in California; yes, I’m obnoxious. But I resent that Providence’s temperature has been turned into a disgusting display of identity politics. I’m tired of my Northern brethren sneering at my plight— only after I tell them from where I hail. Northern or southern, rural Montana mountaineer or Bay area bro— are we not all human? Do we not all bleed red when cut? Do we not all have functioning nervous systems capable of recognizing how cruel the Providence wind can be?
Look, don’t get the wrong idea. I’m not one of those southerners, I did my research. I didn’t show up to Brown with a single pair of sandals in hand and a few pastel colored shorts, naively expecting the Northeast to cater to me. No, I perused Winter Coat Weekly for months before deciding on my perfect synthetic feather-filled friend. I weathered the jeers of my friends as I asked them innocent questions like “Why can’t I just wear my jean jacket?” I did my due diligence, all in the efforts to keep myself toasty in the icy winter months.
Although it feels somewhat unclear if winter is actually coming (see: 70-degree highs a week and a half ago), it is already November. Midterms are sort of starting to wrap up, but the f-word (f*nals) is starting to work its way into on-campus dialogue, and seminar papers are no longer the stuff of myths. Ugh.
In other words, whether we like it or not, it’s that time of the semester where work becomes a thing that’s real. So, in honor of the impending misery that is actually being productive, here’s a quick guide to which study spots on and around campus are hot and which ones are not. Literally.
HOT: J. Walter Wilson. For some odd reason, JWW is consistently just slightly warmer than one would expect. I really don’t know how I feel about it.
NOT: The Rock, Main Reading Room. I wouldn’t necessarily call it cold, but the main area of the Rock is definitely not hot. Actually, it’s quite pleasant.
Oh God. It’s here. Or it might be here. It seems like just yesterday it was 90 degrees outside and we were all wearing booty shorts as we strutted the Main Green. But that time of the year is gone, and what’s to come is downright terrifying. Yet, we’re not really sure what’s going on because Providence weather is quite confusing and we’re living each day on our toes. Special shout-out to weather.com for always being there.
What we do know is that winter in Providence starts pretty early. It’s going to get colder—a lot colder—as we move into November and December, and Brown students have always struggled to find ways to stay alive in the midst of this arctic chill. We drink coffee and wrap ourselves in fabric, but, more often than not, we each lose at least one limb to frostbite. It’s tragic but true.
The hardest part of the impending winter season is handling those brief moments we spend outside when getting from class to class. It feels like the wind is pistol-whipping us each time we open the door, and stomping through snow reminds us of Elsa from Frozen beating us to death with our own arms.
But never fear! Blog is here with some great tips to make it through this garbage-y season. If even the thought of leaving your residence hall makes you want to curl into fetal position, give some of these a try. They might just save your life. Continue Reading
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.
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):
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
Images via, via, and via.
You have no idea. We do. Let us learn you.
The outpour of support for aquatic life can be found here. And here. Basically it’s all anyone can talk about nowadays. Hop on the bandwagon and visit an aquarium. Sharks are dope. They kill people, but they are also endangered? Scary but sensitive. Dual-motha-fucking-threat. Like the aquatic Miley Cyrus. Even Lupita Nyong’o wore a dress made entirely out of the jewels of the sea.
College Basketball. So hot right now. College Basketball. This prediction has been made before. There’s something about the calendar turning to March that makes everyone suddenly interested in college hoops.
This is meant to be a humor post, and is in no ways intended to offend those who work to maintain the immaculacy of the John Hay Library. It’s personally one of my favorite places to work, and I love it dearly and have profound respect for its staff.
Finals season is definitely not for the faint of heart. Between term papers, exams, and group projects, finals season is mentally and physically exhausting. The poor newly-renovated John Hay Library is a lowly first-year at Brown, and it’s definitely feeling the struggle. Here are three times the John Hay Library simply could not deal with finals season:
1. That time it just needed to sleep. The John Hay Library has been caught sleeping on the job twice this week! Between a 10:30 p.m. bedtime on Tuesday and a 4:08 p.m. power nap today, this poor little first-year is definitely struggling to adapt to the finals season sleep cycle (or lack thereof).
2. That time it forgot to drink Emergen-C and caught a cold. Poor John Hay Library hasn’t quite realized the importance of keeping its immune system strong during this tough time. It must have forgotten to take its daily dose of Vitamin C, because it started to get quite cold earlier this week. There was supposedly some sort of malfunction with the heater, but we all know that the John Hay Library was really just feeling a bit under the weather due to all of the stress and lack of sleep that comes with finals period!
3. That time it was too exhausted to print out its term paper. The John Hay Library finally finished its term paper, just before the deadline! However, it was just so mentally and physically run-down from the many long hours of work that it dedicated to the paper that it forgot to print it out! Poor thing.
Hang in there, John Hay Library! It’ll all be over before you know it!
Images via, via, and via Kevin Haggerty ’18.