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.
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!
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It’s too hot. Now it’s too humid. Uh-oh, now it’s raining. During the first few days back on College Hill, students have aired a laundry list of complaints about a whole range of meteorological conditions.
And I get it. Providence weather is fickle, and some people find that frustrating. Humidity that causes you to break a sweat just by thinking too hard isn’t fun. Neither is a surprise rainstorm that pounces on you as you leave class.
But it’s worth looking on the bright side of things. The days are warm, and even at night temperatures are barely dipping below sixty degrees. On top of that, until today we’ve had plenty of sun. Things certainly could be worse. In fact, they often have been worse.
- For those who are wont to complain about a brief afternoon shower, it’s worth remembering Superstorm Sandy, which turned Providence, and most of the Northeast, into a lake. And not a fun lake that you could waterski on or swim in, but an angry lake that flooded streets and would have happily ripped you out to sea.
- In 2013, Nor’easter Nemo pounded across New England, dumping enough snow to break the spirits of even the most optimistic Dory-like students on campus.
- And, of course, there’s the series of snowstorms that all but obliterated Providence last winter. We got so much snow that even Executive Vice President, Planning and Policy Russell Carey couldn’t save us. But he did grant us two snow days. To show our gratitude, we nominated him for President of the United States of America.
Carey is drawing low numbers in recent polls, but his favorability is expected to skyrocket if he gives us another snow day.
Mother Nature is sending us good vibes so far as Spring Week begins: the chance of rain on Friday and Saturday has dropped to 20%. Can you say #blessed? Let’s continue to pray to the skies until the BCA makes the rain call to release another 2,300 tickets to students on Wednesday, April 15. Until then, here are the pros and cons of the Spring Weekend concerts being held indoors in the Pizzitola Gymnasium.
- You won’t lose your sunglasses.
- You can reminisce about middle school dances in the gym.
- Bathrooms. Real bathrooms.
The forecast for Spring Weekend needs to change. The ten day forecast now displays there is a 40% chance of rain on Friday, and a 60% chance of rain on Saturday. In other words, it’s not looking good.
So what does that mean for us? The first possibility is that everything goes according to plan; it doesn’t actually rain, and we all get to enjoy the concert outside. There is also a chance that if it rains a small enough amount, we can still have the concert outside and enjoy Waka in the mud. It would take going hard in the paint to a whole new level.