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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Anatomy of an All-Nighter

You’re sitting in class, half-paying attention because while you find your professor to be wildly intelligent, you realized three weeks ago that Human Perspectives on Sex Roles was never going to play an integral role in your life and you’d rather beat your high score in Tetris on your phone. You tune in when she reminds the class that the midterm will be in two weeks and that the three books you were supposed to have read thus far will comprise the majority of the exam. A wave of responsibility washes over and you decide that that information is important, so you break out the trusty agenda that you (and your GPA) could not survive without and go to jot down the reminder. You open up to today’s date and glance across the page as you flip it, only to violently flip back to look at the assignment written in tomorrow’s block:

“First Short Paper Due”

You wrote it in hot pink pen with stars around it like a third grader, how could you have missed this? Have you seriously not opened this agenda since last Thursday? Did you even go to class last Thursday? #Senioryearproblems. ‘Well eff,’ you think to yourself. Two years ago this would have sent you into a frantic tailspin, cancelling all plans and immediately going to the library to get started. Fortunately, you now know that a trip to the gym, scoring a turkey flatbread from Subway, and updating Twitter are much greater priorities, and you finally give the paper a second thought at about 8:30 pm.

After some online shopping and a trip to the vending machine, you give the paper a third thought and figure looking at the assignment sheet will grant you thirty minutes of Facebooking. You earned it, worker bee. The paper is for your philosophy class, which clearly doesn’t mean anything of value (What do philosophy majors grow up to be, Socrates?), so when the assignment reads: “Discuss how a focus on culture and identities speaks to the nature of philosophy as a discipline that is partly driven by historical awareness,” you read it over three more times and see what you can find on Pinterest.

10:30 pm. Well shit, time flies when you’re obsessively looking at how to crochet your own coasters even though you’ve never sewn in your life and the condition of your stolen-from-the-side-of-the-road coffee table might actually improve by a few drink rings. Let’s read that assignment again… Nope, still doesn’t make sense. As your fingers hover over your mouse like the possessed hand from the Addams Family and try to get you to check if anyone’s commented on your witty status update, you fight the urge and instead reach for everyone’s favorite party animal, Adderall. You’re about to be a MACHINE. You’re about to be INVINCIBLE. You’re about… to read every Wikipedia page for every band you’ve ever liked and take meticulous notes on their discography so you can proceed to update your iTunes with any missing songs. If you weren’t the biggest Neil Diamond fan of all time before, you definitely are now. Sweeeeeet Caroliiiine…

You announce to no one in particular that “it’s already tomorrow!” and figure 1:00 am is as good a time as any to get started. How long did this thing have to be again? FIVE PAGES?! Cool your jets, we both know you’re going to adjust the periods and commas to size 14. But still, FOUR AND A QUARTER PAGES?! On “culture and identities”?! This is why all philosophy majors are hippies, there’s no way anyone would obtain their degree if they weren’t constantly blazed and realized how stupid their classes were. Luckily, you and Addy have hit a symbiotic stride and you breeze through the first four paragraphs in like five minutes. At this rate, you’ll be home in time to see tonight’s re-run of E News. Part of you knows that the logical thing to do would be to proofread what you’ve already got down, but the more intelligent part of you knows that you’ll be very disappointed in what you see and that it’s better for everyone if you just let the nonsense lie. If ignorance is bliss, you’re about to be the happiest dumbass on the planet.

A social lap around the library conjured neither entertaining gossip nor an idea for the next four pages you had to write, so you return to your seat and start picking at your split ends. Over the course of the next hour and a half you plunk a few quotes that have nothing to do with anything in the middle of your paragraphs and BS a few sentences with every synonym of “identity” that Microsoft Word’s Thesaurus has to offer. After sending a mass text announcing that you are “literally” going to kill yourself if you have to look at these words for another five seconds, you decide that the paper is going to suck regardless and you might as well just cut your losses and go home.

You start to feel guilty about being such a procrastinator/bad student/lazy bum and try to squeeze one more paragraph of nonsense onto the page. It’s 4:45. After performing the anti-climactic task of double-spacing the entire paper only to find that it’s at three pages plus a sentence, you quickly throw together a bibliography and hit “Save.” Like a mother who has just given birth to a Rick Roll-level ginger, you can barely look at your paper without gagging in disgust. You print it, wash your hands clean of the entire experience, and proceed to sit on your couch watching the Magic Bullet infomercial on repeat for the next four hours because your Adderall is still kickin’. Oh what a night.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Gifts No One Wants on Valentine's Day

The movie Valentine’s Day was on HBO tonight and while it’s a well-known fact that I don’t condone anything associated with Taylor Swift or her whiny “Pick Me Choose Me Love Meeee” music, I somehow still got sucked into watching the entire thing. Again. In between calling bullshit on the fact that Bradley Cooper could ever be gay and that Anne Hathaway’s character could moonlight as a phone sex operator from her cell phone (it’s required that you do it from a landline. I looked into it), I was mostly distracted by the obnoxious, gigantic teddy bear that TSwift’s character chose to carry around everywhere. All I could think about was how unromantic (and yeah, uncool) I would feel lugging a ginormous Winnie the Pooh on my back all day, and how anyone who was trying to win my affection would only have to hand me a plate of Cheesecake Factory four-cheese pasta and catch me on the flipside. 

I’m not sure what it is, but it seems that come February everyone is still burnt out from Christmas shopping and totally blows it in the V-Day gift-giving department. Yeah yeah, we know, “it’s the thought that counts,” but if your boyfriend/girlfriend put actual effort into any of the gifts mentioned below, you all either found each other on Craigslist or you’re pushing 40 and this is as good as it’s gonna get. Do your relationship a favor and refrain from exchanging the following gifts that no one wants to receive on this day o’ love.

Oh, and remember that there is no shame whatsoever in sending yourself an Edible Arrangement and calling it a night. Or so I’ve heard.

A puppy – In theory, this seems like a great idea. “It’s a symbol of our love! As we raise this little animal together it’s like we’re growing our bond! We can name it Cupid!” Then it pees all over your girlfriend’s carpet and cries all through the strip tease she’s trying to replicate from her Flirty Girl Fitness DVD, completely ruining an otherwise perfectly romantic moment. The most difficult part about a Valentine’s Day puppy is that by February 15 it has become a Forever puppy and suddenly everyone remembers that puppies like to be fed occasionally. Soon enough, your cutesy gift takes a cruel turn as you have to return it to the Humane Society and receive disapproving glares of hatred from the volunteers. How sweet.

Clothing in a size M, L, or XL – Logic is not a big part of Valentine’s Day. Or relationships. Or life in general, for that matter. The sooner you understand this, the better. Now I know what you’re thinking: “But she is a medium!” And yes, the medium sweater will fit her and be far more flattering and blah blah blah. But does she want to wear a medium? No. Does she want you to think she wears a medium? Absolutely not. Girls have some twisted reasoning when it comes to sizing, but as a general rule, anything with the letter “S” in it will suffice. Don’t worry about whether or not it fits, worry about whether or not you’ll be in the doghouse for assuming her correct size is made with an inch more of fabric.

A subscription to Maxim – You may think this is the coolest move you could pull in your quest to become Girlfriend of the Year, and in some ways it might be. You’re essentially giving him a free pass to look at hotties, proving how secure you are not only with yourself but also your relationship… But real talk, we both know that you’re overcompensating for the fact that he caught you looking through his texts and this is your peace offering. He knows just as well as you do that he has no chance with any of the girls in that magazine, but that won’t keep you from kidnapping each new issue and using the pages as your puppy’s crate liner because you “ran out” of newspaper.

Love Coupons
“One free back massage.”
“Two free kisses on the forehead.”
“One five-minute session of ‘No, YOU hang up!’”
“One free offer to pick up a box of tampons for you.”
“Three minutes of being understanding when I see you talking to your ex-girlfriend.”
“One promise to buy you flowers tomorrow to make up for this stupid excuse for a present.”

Valentine’s Day on DVD – Seriously, this movie sucks.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Walk of Shame vs. The Stride of Pride

Classic weekend scenario: You and your roommates decided while pregaming the pregame that you were going to go much harder in the paint than usual tonight (“Like, if I leave the bar with both my earrings and without stumbling like a newborn baby deer, the night is a failure”). Consequently, you took more shots than is respectful of your BMI and the kid who complimented your new top, touched your leg once during your conversation (“Ugh, he totally loves me”), and bought you three Vegas Bombs offered you a ride home.

To your home? Of course not.

Fast forward four hours and you wake up in a strange bed staring at posters of Brooklyn Decker and Beer Pong Rules. Roll over and check to see if Dude Bro is awake attractive. If yes, sneak to the bathroom, wash your face, make yourself look halfway decent, climb back in bed, and pretend you look this flawless every morning. If no, silently gather your things and GET THE FUCK OUT OF THERE.
It is at this time that quick-decision-making skills are a must. You have two options, and they are integral in making the 20-30 minute trek you’re about to go through justifiable – or if nothing else, bearable. Ask yourself: do I want to maintain a shred of dignity, or am I chalking this up to experience and understanding that having “WELCOME TO COLLEGE!” yelled at me from passers-by is absolutely mandatory? Either way, here’s a survival guide to both scenarios.

Merit Badge: you earned it
You chose: The Walk of Shame – Bold move. There are a few things you should reside yourself to from the get-go. First, even if you wiped the mascara from under your eyes and fixed your hair into a casual “I meant for it to look like this” messy bun, it’s still 9:30 am on Saturday and you’re still carrying your heels. Everyone knows it. See that old man taking his dog on a walk? He definitely knows it, because he’s probably seen several hot messes walk out of that same apartment building. Do not make eye contact with him. Hopefully your side bangs have nonchalantly fallen into your face to mask the amount of indignity you should be feeling, and hopefully you recognize your surroundings well enough to bee-line it home through back alleys and side streets. You should already be on the phone with your BFF demanding immediate pick-up in exchange for a Qdoba thank-you; however, if she enjoys having you embarrass yourself or happens to be making a Walk of Shame of her own, you should immediately change your tune and hope that no one you know will be driving by anytime soon. Not that it matters: anyone who has ever been to college will know what’s up and will be yelling hilariously rude things to you as they speed by. You have no control over this, and quite frankly, you fucking deserve it, so just keep your body/pride angled toward the ground and wonder how people who just have a glass or two of wine spend their mornings.

What an inspiration

You chose: The Stride of Pride – You either really couldn’t care less about what people think of you, or you’ve done this so many times before that you’re a seasoned pro. Whatever the case may be, you know for a fact that smudged eyeliner is inherently sexy and that a red banded mini dress is appropriate all hours of the day. If you carry your shoes, you’re swinging those babies around like a baton twirler. Of course, the experienced Strider of Pride has slipped her heels right back on and swags past the morning joggers like it’s for sale and the rent is due tonight. When people call to you from their cars, you throw up an “Oh hey girl!” hand and smile big. This is the closest you’ll ever get to being Ms. America so you better own the shit out of it. Sure, you’ve broken out your phone, but only to have a normal conversation with your boss/mom/rabbi about the weather or the recent State of the Union address. Finger comb that rat’s nest and throw those shoulders back: you’re a veteran of the Slut Strut, and you’ve gotta show these hoes-in-training how to do it up right.