Three months from now, many of my classmates and I will be jet-setting to foreign lands in search of adventure, out-of-the box education, invaluable experiences, and the perfect foodstagrams. Going abroad sits somewhere between exciting and strange. Everyone I’ve spoken to, who is leaving Brown for the fall semester, has agreed that it doesn’t yet feel like we’re actually leaving, or like we aren’t going to be back here for a whopping eight months.
You know what they say–count your blessin’s. Though the sophomore slump hit us pretty effing hard, we shouldn’t forget what we’ll miss about Brown while we’re gone. I know — the slump makes it easy to forget. Don’t worry — I’m here to remind you what’s so special about Brunonia.
1. The Ratty. Some study abroad programs don’t offer meal plans for their students. Plus, how could those that do compete with the Ratty? The Ratty, in my opinion, is one of the most amazing things about Brown. Those going abroad won’t find all-you-can eat, pre-paid meals everywhere in the world — or daily access to grilled chicken.
2. The Brown bubble. The Brown bubble is safer than any foreign city; there’s no doubt about that. It’s also a one-stop shop — the Brown bubble has everything you could ever need in a square mile and a half. Food, good places to work, a CVS, bars, and, most importantly, Health Services! What do I do if my appendix explodes while I’m abroad? How do I find antibiotics in the Czech Republic?
3. The familiar faces, which lies in the same vein as the Brown bubble. It sounds like a college cliché, but it’s true — you really can’t go more than two minutes without running into someone you know or without someone saying hi to you. When you’re having a shitty day and are forced to smile to someone you know, your day actually becomes that much better. I’m not so sure you can feel so loved in a city of millions of strangers. (Wow, that sounds super depressing.)
As morbid as it might be, there are plenty of ways to die at Brown. College is a dangerous place. Winter is a dangerous season. The new Campus Snapstory encourages students to do attention-grabbing things. The buildings are 200 years old. You never know what’s gonna happen, so you may as well be wary of the ways you might find your demise here on campus. Most are uncontrollable, but you may as well know, in case there’s any way to prepare for the danger that lies ahead.
1. Being smushed when the person in front of you on line for the Ratty neglects to hold the door open. Or being blown backwards, flying up, and getting smashed on the inside Ratty doors when those 1,000 mph winds are unleashed while trying to leave. (Basically, you’re screwed pre- and post-Cajun pasta.)
2. In something that looks like a scene from I Am Legend, you are climbing to the third floor in Health Services and the slanted spiral staircase, in slow motion, collapses beneath you.
3. Sledding down College Hill and making a grand entrance right into the below-freezing Providence River. We’re talking a deadly drowning/hypothermia combo.
4. On that note — being impaled by a six-foot dangling icicle.
5. A big disk (is that a light? a fan? a UFO?) that hangs from the Ratty ceiling falls and lands right on your head, creating something that looks like this:
(And obviously you’ll just be sitting there, like, “Oh, bother.”)
This semester, I am taking my third visual art studio class at Brown. That means I’ve already gotten through two semesters of sharing List’s white-washed, fluorescent-lit workrooms without running into the kind of situation that I did a couple weekends ago.
It was the kind of situation where you can imagine yourself lashing out at those around you, but don’t actually, because you know it will be more fun to complain to your friends about it later, FlogDailyHerald-style.
So here it goes: I listened to a total of ten hours of K-pop (Korean pop music), all of which could be heard over the sound of my own in-ear soundtrack of sensitive girl music (admittedly there was some James Taylor in there) and the new Bombay Bicycle Club album (well, I had to make myself look cool after the aforementioned confession, didn’t I?). I tried to tune out my peers’ ambiance music, but alas, I did not succeed. I am now confident that I can sing more than half of these catchy Korean melodies from memory.
With midterms now upon us, the libraries have become packed with crazed, zombie-like students, influencing many of us to opt to study in an alternative location. Fortunately, Brown has lots of shared study spaces for you to take advantage of. Sure, they’re not libraries, but they still require you to use your manners and be polite. But how do you properly share those spaces with others? Check out our tips after the jump.
Chocolate/Vanilla frosting and shamrock sprinkles. Not pictured: plain chocolate and vanilla cupcakes.
Happy St. Ratty’s day! Say what you want about its everyday fare, but everyone’s favorite refectory never fails to pull out all the stops on special occasions. Go on over and decorate your own edible arrangements while supplies still last – you’ll need something in your stomach if you plan on making it through the day.
Last year on St. Patrick's Day, the Ratty had decorate-your-own cupcakes.
It looks like the Ratty is having a Valentine’s Day special, as the desert listed for today’s lunch is “Decorate Cupcakes and Cookies.” Yum!
Guys, this is so great. We are peeing in our pants. Literally. Because we just drank so much coffee in the Ratty. That’s right. Coffee. Not “coffee.”
The Ratty now has a new coffee station (not even completed! It’s going to get more awesome!) that serves Sun Coffee, the same brand sold in the Blue Room and other Brown Dining retail locations. This is a game-changer.