Your professor’s house: A brief guide to etiquette

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As the end of the semester appears on the horizon, there may be many of you who, whether through TA positions, a small seminar class, or general enthusiasm for a class’s subject (nerd), will find yourselves invited to a professor’s home for a bit of discussion and light refreshment. This is particularly true for professors who live on College Hill, as moving class to their abode adds only a few minutes to the commute. You may be chomping at the bit to witness the colonial beauty of your instructor’s residence, but, like all things Puritan, visiting a professor’s house isn’t fun and games. It’s fraught with the risk of eternal damnation for the image you’ve carefully crafted throughout a semester’s worth of class meetings. Here are a few conundrums you may encounter, and my recommendations for how to react.

Attire

What ought you wear to a professor’s home? Clearly it ought to be something fairly nice. This means that your “(Blood Alcohol) Concentration Advisor” tank from Spring Weekend is a non-starter. At the same time, you shouldn’t overdress. your get-together is probably taking the place of a normal day of class, so black tie is a bit much. You can get a clue as to what’s acceptable by comparing your clothing to what your professor usually wears to class, and see if you can approximately mimic their sartorial formality. Alternatively, you can damn the torpedoes, show up in pajama pants, and act like everything’s cool (it isn’t).

Food: How Much is Too Much?

Your professor will likely provide you with, at the very least, a plate of cookies or crackers to snack upon whilst you either have a relatively normal class or else relax and discuss whatever subject you and your classmates settle on for the day. Typically, cookies are the food of choice.

Cookies

No white chocolate macadamia nut? The knave!

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Pollerbears: It’s November, that means…

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September faded into October, and Halloweek led us quickly into November. So now what? We’re here in the last full month of the fall semester, believe it or not, and are wondering how we got here or where we’re being taken. We turned the clocks back, it’s getting darker earlier, the temperatures are dropping, and finals are switfly approaching. Jeez, is there anything redeeming about November? We at BlogDH want to know, now that it’s November, what does that mean for you?

It's November, that means...

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Tips on how not to study

Student-Studying

A Brown student studying hard.

Midterm season has arrived in full-force these past few weeks. This has motivated countless students to settle down among the stacks, open their books and laptops, and revisit their old classroom notes and problem sets in an effort to succeed at all the challenges that Brown offers to them. Filled with personal discipline, an ability to delay gratification, and above all else a striving passion to perform, these devoted students will approach their exams and essays with a deep confidence in their abilities, a focused and prepared mind, and several nights of undisturbed sleep.

Here are some tips that might help you and other students avoid their looming work for the next cycle of midterms.

1. Think About How Much You Work You Have

There’s nothing better to distract you from studying than to think about how much work you have. I mean, really try to ponder it—all of the material that you’re responsible for in each class, how many words you’ll have to write in total for your essays—whatever it is, just make sure you’re very aware of how much you’ll need to accomplish in the next week. For the next step in not working, try to imagine the worst possible consequences that could happen if you screwed up. Linger on all of this for a few hours, and you’ll be well on your way to not getting anything done.

This pretty much identical to the one before it.

Identical to the one before, except this guy seems more stressed.

2. Talk to Other People About How Much Work You Have

Closely related to number one, a great way to be unproductive is to complain to others about how much you have to do in the upcoming weeks. Parents, friends, acquaintances, random people in line at the Ratty, all can be effectively used as tools to avoid finishing work. Try to distract them from their own work as you complain, so they become more anxious about what they have to do as well. The less industrious the people are around you, the better you’ll be at not studying.

But remember: always make sure that they know that you, ultimately, have it much harder than them, and are worthy of their sympathy.

Does anyone study with all these books?

Has anyone ever studied with that many books?

3. Wait to Talk to a TA or go to Office Hours

If you really want to make sure you that you feel unaccomplished by the weekend, never start work on anything until you’re fully sure that you have the approval and understanding of your professor and/or TA. Go during peak hours of their schedule so you’ll have to wait in a long line, and never ask them direct questions related to your work, because remember,  you haven’t started that. Instead, focus on broad, generic ideas that they have already mentioned in class, or ideally would be answered either on the syllabus or prompt—things that will bring you no closer to sitting down and working. But be careful, you might accidentally leave feeling productive, so try to remain skeptical of whatever advice they have to offer.

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BlogDailyHerald Presents: 140 tracks to make finals bearable

Even finals can be made a little better with some good music, right? Wrong. Right! So, instead of actually doing our own work, we compiled a killer study playlist that’ll hopefully make living in the Rock (or Scili!) slightly more bearable. Be sure to comment below with your favorite songs or any ones that we missed.

Happy finals!


How to get your finals done

Finals season is upon us, folks. If you’re like me, that means your day probably looks something like this: You spend a lot of time drinking iced coffee outside, and then when that inevitable cloud covers the sun for the rest of the day, you proceed inside to look at a blank word processor until it’s time for bed, at which point you watch cooking shows until you fall asleep and do it all over again the next day (don’t deny it).

But someone has to write that paper due tomorrow! Someone needs to study for that test! Someone needs to make that presentation! And unfortunately, it’s going to be you. Here are some ways to buckle down so you can make the most of Cinco de Mayo (which is tomorrow, people. Priorities.)

1. All nighters. Actually though, don’t do it. You’ll hate yourself, everyone will hate you. Your body was not designed to stay up for that many hours. Plus, I can hear your heartbeat from here after all those energy drinks you consumed. Oh, and you’ll look like a zombie.

Tell me I look tired one more time

Tell me I look tired one more time

2. GET THIS APP: SelfControl. Oh my god it will change your work ethic. You create a list of all of the websites you like to go to, set a timer for any amount of time, press “go,” and then the app prevents you from visiting these sites until the timer runs out. Like your computer actually won’t let you. Is it a little pathetic you need a computer to keep you in check? Yes. Will you get your shit done? Absolutely. Now if you want to stall, at least you’ll have to do it with people, not Buzzfeed.

3. Set up a reward system. 5 pages of a paper, treat yourself to froyo. 5 more and you get a Ben & Jerry’s sundae. 5 more and you get a Johnny Rockets milkshake. For some reason the only rewards I can think of are frozen dairy products but whatever ’tis the season.

Above: friends.

Above: friends.

4. Just do it. You’ll feel better, and you won’t turn green with envy when your drunk friend texts you at 4p.m. on a Wednesday because THAT DRUNK FRIEND WILL BE YOU.

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12 days of Flogmas: TV show winter breaks

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As I have been informed by many of my friends, finals period for some people actually means watching less TV than you would be able to otherwise. As much as they have tried to explain this concept to me, I remain confused. What are you doing all day? Studying? But you still eat right? And breathe? Okay, then I don’t get it…

As I have tried to explain to them, some individuals, myself included, actually see reading/finals period as a great opportunity to spend a few extra hours watching TV as a way of preserving mental sanity. Sure, I still work, but if I’m going to spend an entire 60 minutes working on a paper, I’m gonna need a 90-minute reprise (I already feel like I’ve been writing this article for an eternity). Continue Reading