The Lazyman’s Guide: Avoiding chores this Thanksgiving

For a lot of first years, this week will be the your first time home since the summer. And while you may have gotten used to having your only mug, which you drank tea from once at the beginning of the semester, unwashed, gross and chilling on your desk, your parents are not. You won’t only have to clean up after yourself (what does a bed look like when it’s been made, anyway?), but you can probably count on being asked to “help out around the house.” For the laziest of us, to whom the simplest chores may seem as difficult as running a marathon, here’s a guide to (dealing with) getting out of them.


  1. Play the Friends Card

Always, always, always have plans. When your dad asks you if you can rake the yard, say “Oh, but Sheila and I were going to catch up over coffee and my guess is it’s going to be a looooooong chat.” Emphasize how much you’ve missed your hometown friends, and how, because the break is so short, you want to pack as much time in as you can with as many people as possible. Don’t forget to throw in some long bit about how sad it is that the times when you are home will become rarer and rarer.

  1. Or Play the Sibling Card. It’s Even Better 

Parents are suckers for seeing their kids spend quality time together. If you have brothers or sisters, pay attention to them. Watch movies, give them lots of hugs, take your younger sister to lunch, etc. Pull at your parents’ heartstrings until they are afraid to ask you for help because it would disrupt your wonderful newfound fondness for your brother. And actually, sibling time can be really fantastic anyway– don’t take it for granted.

  1. Be one with the P-Set

So a lot of us may actually have a significant amount of work this Thanksgiving. Every time you are home and sense your mom might be about to allot you a chore, make sure you are working intensely on your APMA problem set. Take on the homework and take out the home work.

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A (Dorm at) Brown Thanksgiving


This year, East Side Marketplace ran a special where, after spending a certain amount of money from late October to early November, customers could turn in their receipts for a free turkey. My roommates and I, as four students off meal plan and with a kitchen, were able to get two after our weekly grocery trips. In other words, I finally had the perfect excuse to want to take on the challenge of cooking Thanksgiving dinner in a dorm room kitchen.

11:00 a.m., Sunday We head to East Side Marketplace, picking up our free turkeys (one of which we gave to another friend for her Thanksgiving dinner). It turns out the free turkeys were frozen, which would never thaw in one day, so we took a voucher to get $20 off of a refrigerated turkey breast (which cooks faster and was cheaper, so win-win there).

11:08 a.m. A very nice woman at the deli counter calls me “papa.” It’s going to be a good Thanksgiving indeed.

11:20 a.m. We pick up the other necessary items: stuffing, potatoes, cranberries.

11:33 a.m. It takes two employees plus myself to find gravy in a jar.

11:35 a.m. Found it.

11:55 a.m. We return and unpack our groceries. One of my roommates is a vegan and has prepared well for dinner later (see below).


Ah, Tofurkey.

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Pollerbears: Cranberry edition


Cranberries-1024x801Regardless of whether you’re staying on campus or headed elsewhere, your Thanksgiving break has officially arrived!

Want to know what’s on our mind? Cranberries. In honor of Thanksgiving, we want to know all about your cranberry consumption. How will you be celebrating your break in ~cranberry style~?

How will you be consuming cranberries this Thanksgiving break?

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What to do this week: November 23 – 26


While a lot of students reading this are already home, here are some on-campus goings-on for those of us pushing through til Wednesday at noon.

Monday, November 23

Event: Grading the Green
Location: Main Green
Time: 10:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m.

“As a part of the class Pathology to Power, a group of Brown students have turned the tables on this University and graded some of the most important spaces for students on campus. These buildings were graded with various types of accessibility in mind to be more inclusive of our community.”

Event: Applied Music Voice Masterclass
Location: Grant Recital Hall
Time: 4:00 p.m.

Is singing “Happy Birthday” a struggle? Have you always been secretly envious of Ariana Grande? If you answered yes to either of these questions, or are just interested in improving your singing voice, join Dr. Brad Fugate in a musical masterclass. This event is free, open to the public, and not nearly as intimidating as a having doctorate in vocal performance would lead you to believe it is.

Event: jSwipe Live
Location: Petteruti Lounge
Time: 8:00 p.m. — 10:00 p.m.

Happy Cuffing Season! Find a “jBae” to text over the break. All are welcome and “aphrodisiacs will be served.”

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The Anti-Slump: Look how far we’ve come


Yeah no things are great, super great. I wish I could be a sophomore forever.

Uh oh. It’s almost time to go home for Thanksgiving break. That means I’m gonna have to convince my family and friends that sophomore year is somehow better than freshman year.

But it is better, right? I mean, I won’t have to lie about having made tons of new friends this year. Because I do have tons of new friends, right?

Oh dear.

Of course, my family will be more concerned about academics, which is good for me, cause I’m a much better student now. Last year I rarely went to my professors’ office hours, but as a sophomore, I make a point of going all the time… well, really more like sometimes. Except for that one professor, who I’ve never even talked to, but I’ll definitely stop by their office hours before the semester ends.

As a sophomore, I am simply more confident about my academic plan. This year, I can proudly announce to my friends and family that I will almost certainly be concentrating in History, or Portuguese, or American Studies, or Africana Studies, or maybe Urban Studies cause I took this really cool class that talked about cities and stuff, but I could also do like an independent concentration in something cool, plus I like books so Comp Lit is still on the table. I’ve come a long way since freshman year. Continue Reading

Thanksgiving conversations to avoid

If you’re a freshman, Thanksgiving break will probably be the first time that you have gone home since spreading your wings, leaving the nest, and other cliche bird metaphors. Bottom line, it’s your first time going back home since becoming a cool, collegiate co-ed.  While it is a time of tense joyous reunions, familial bickering bonding, excessively lengthy heartfelt “why I’m thankful” speeches, etcetera, it is also a veritable minefield of potentially disastrous conversations.

If at all possible, make sure to avoid the following potential conversations:

1) Explaining hookup culture to Grandma.

If your grandmother is anything like mine, she doesn’t give a flying fig about what classes you’re taking, or how you’ve been getting involved around campus — the first and only question she will ask you during your lengthy meal together is whether you have a boyfriend.

And, as it turns out, she really doesn’t want to hear about how the times have changed, and how, nowadays, dating (“going steady” in grandma terminology) is really a less and less common occurrence. She definitely does not want to be further told how relationships are now most often exclusively physical and most likely going nowhere near marriage. No, I’d just stick to a simple “Not yet, grandma. But it’s my first priority, of course!”

2) Betraying to your nerdy uncle that you haven’t gotten a Star Wars ticket.

Uncle _____ will be OUTRAGED if he finds out that you haven’t yet secured your tickets for the midnight showing of The Force Awakens. He got his tickets month ago, and already knows which jedi he’s going to dress up as for the show. Don’t cause him this emotional distress; if he asks, you Fandango-ed tickets weeks ago and have already ordered your Bobba Fett mask.

Shit that's expensive

Shit that’s expensive

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