A Day in the Life of a College Student

When Spring Break started last week, I was afforded the opportunity to see my older brother in college for a few days. I visited Linfield College, a small school of about 1,500 undergraduates, in McMinnville, Oregon. When my older brother and I first arrived on the campus, most of the students were still on their break, so it was really quiet in the dorm hall.

On the first day, my older brother and I spent all day with two of my brother’s college friends who got to Linfield the day before. We had Thai food for lunch, drove to the Oregon coast, walked on the beach, went to DQ, and later returned to McMinnville for some excellent Mexican food.

The next day, my brother and I went to the campus cafeteria for lunch, which is across the street from my brother’s dorm. I was told that the food that was served there was hit-or-miss. Later, my older brother took me around the campus, showing me all of his classes and all of the other buildings. As more of my brother’s friends started to arrive in the dorm, we had more fun. One of the things I learned about college is that you get to meet a lot of nice people from different places and backgrounds.

Another habit of college students is that many people have bizarre sleep schedules and eating habits. On the second night, after having dinner at 6:00 pm, my brother, some of his friends and I went out at 11:00 pm for take-out Taco Bell. Unsurprisingly, we didn’t go to sleep until after 1:00 am. Some students sleep until 11:00 if they did not have an early class. My older brother said that he doesn’t wake up until noon on some days.

As for dorm life, people have to live with a roommate, who can either be a college student’s best friend or their worst nightmare. Luckily, no one in my older brother’s hall had any terrible roommates.  People at Linfield were pretty open about letting people into their rooms, whether they were studying, or just relaxing. Each floor also had its own communal bathroom, and individual shower stalls. Because I was just a guest for a few days, I didn’t have anywhere else to sleep except the floor. One night was so bad, I don’t even remember getting any sleep.

On Tuesday, my last day of the trip, I was able to sit-in on my older brother’s nutrition class. College classes are a lot different from a high school class. Compared to a normal high school class, in a normal college class there’s a greater emphasis on lectures, note-taking, using computers during and after classes, and an incredible amount of homework.

When I left Linfield College, I was able to take a lot of lessons with me to help prepare me, and get me excited for when I eventually go off to college as well. Overall, my visit was a fun and rewarding experience.

 




Outside Lands 2015 Preview

On Tuesday, the 2015 Outside Lands music festival lineup was announced. Top performers include Elton John, The Black Keys, Mumford and Sons, and Kendrick Lamar. The festival will be held August 7-9 at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

Some of the non-headliners that will perform are Odesza, Devon Baldwin, Milky Chance, Chet Faker, and George Ezra. Expect great sets from all of these artists. Outside Lands also has a knack for picking artists that are under the radar, but fans love. For me, Made in Heights was one of those bands from last year’s festival. They infuse electronic beats with silky vocals and make great relaxing music.

Eager Beaver tickets, which go on sale weeks before the lineup is announced, sold out quickly. On Thursday, general admission tickets sold out in about 40 minutes. New for this year, the festival is switching to wrist bands for three day tickets, as opposed to printed or traditional tickets. This should be a welcome change for most festival-goers, as wristbands are extremely hard to lose.

More artists will be announced leading up to August. As always, tickets are relatively expensive, but in my opinion, are worth every dollar. So save up and head over to Golden Gate Park this summer, as this year’s Outside Lands is sure to be three days full of fun.

 




Jake Bugg: This Generation’s Prodigal Troubador

Smoothly transitioning from the serene Bob Dylanesque melody of his song “Country Song” to the aggressively bluesy tune “Slumville Sunrise,” a crowd of thousands of young Brits chant his name. Surprisingly, this is not a scene from a 1960s folk festival, but rather the T in the Park Music Festival in 2013, with 18 year-old wunderkind Jake Bugg.

Unexplainably talented and accomplished for his age, Bugg is riding the wave created by other current folk bands like Mumford & Sons and even one-upping them. Although yet to establish a huge international following, Bugg has the unbelievable ability to channel feelings reminiscent of the first time you heard “Blowin’ in the Wind.”  Bugg combines his beautifully homey voice with the attitude and picking style of a British Johnny Cash on some tracks, in a way that makes it hard to believe his songs are not 60s folk rock staples.

Currently crafting his third album and coming off a sold out tour with the Black Keys, the melodist from Nottingham is soon to reach his well-deserved stardom.

 




The Problem with Black Floppy Hats

Last summer, I had the fortunate experience of going to Outside Lands music festival in San Francisco with a couple friends. We had a great time, and the music was fantastic. However, I noticed an alarming trend while at the festival. It seemed like every girl I saw was wearing a black floppy hat.

I get it, music festivals are for your three best and most radical outfits of the year. But seriously, someone needs to tell these girls that they all looked the same.

I am all for creativity and expression, but when large amounts of people do the same as you do, no one seems creative or original. That is one of the problems we have today. Everyone tries to be different, which ends up leaving everyone the same. I am going to stop getting into society’s problems now, because I know that I don’t know enough about the complexities of society.

Maybe to be “mainstream” is the new unique. Reverse reverse! (Chacha slide anyone?)… Anyways, this year at Outside Lands I truly hope to see some creative style decisions. Perhaps a brave girl will wear a white floppy hat.

 




How to Spend Your Holiday Money

What do you plan to do with all that cash that rolled in from your loving family during the holidays? If you are having trouble deciding what new 2015 trend to invest in, let me narrow down the list for you. The only thing worth your hard-earned holiday gift money this month is sushi. The Bay Area has one of the highest concentrations of quality sushi restaurants in the world, behind, probably, Japan or something. Here are some of the local sushi places most worth your money.

For a simple intro to the world of sushi, try Manpuku on College Avenue in Berkeley. Packed up in the tiny restaruant is a flare of authenticity and taste. From bento boxes to basic rolls, this quick sushi stop has all the makings of a great intro to sushi. Try the classic rolls and miso soup.

Closer to home, and with a little more creative twist, is Oyama, in Lafayette. If you can handle spicy, try the Golden Bear or Hot Mamasita Roll. Along with intriguing rolls, Oyama serves sashimi, entrees, and bento boxes to tingle your taste buds.

Dress up to drop your dollers at Sasa, in Walnut Creek. Sasa extends beyond the reach of typical Japanese cuisine. In addition to the sushi menu is an entree menu with a classy take on Japanese seafood. Included are dishes like tempura shrimp lettuce wraps and tuna parfait. The sushi is tactful and tasteful, presented in its simplicity. Sasa’s shining characteristic is the quality of the seafood.

Venture to Uzen, in Oakland, for an authentic and fresh experience. With fish of exceptional quality, Uzen offers delectable sashimi, nigiri, and rolls. The scallops are a constant favorite, and don’t be afraid of the uni (sea urchin). Opt for the simpler presentations of fish at Uzen, and pay attention to what is fresh and special that day.

For a close-to-home taste of Japan, Sushi Island, in Orinda, offers rolls from the simple to the sensational. Something about that creamy sauce on the Orinda Roll doesn’t scream authenticity, but you won’t be able to get enough of it. The Fireworks Roll is more of an experience than a meal if you’re sitting at the sushi bar and watching the chef torch your lunch. The classic menu offers simpler rolls of decent quality to satisfy the sushi cravings.




Meg and El’s Terrible No Good Very Bad day

It was a tuesday afternoon, two days before Meghan’s 17th birthday. By 2:00, she had gotten 54% on her Physics test, had diarrhea in the bathroom during fourth period, and was killed in the assassins game by none other than Sean McFeely. Ellie was already 17 and still had not read her economics homework. By the looks of it, the week wasn’t shaping up all too nicely.

However, the week of Homecoming is a special time. Even though we faced struggles as individuals, the seniors were dressed up everyday for homecoming, and even though our assassins game was a failure, it would start again the following week. Yay for second chances! Though the week was stressful, Meghan and Ellie were both able to pull through thanks to the abundance of spirit on campus. Time passed quickly and it was Thursday, the day of Meg’s birth. Our friends convened at her house to celebrate another year gone by. One year ago we were all just becoming friends. When we got to Meghan’s, her mother greeted us with apple cider and a beautiful eggplant parmesan. After the candlelit dinner at Meg’s, we drove over to Ici in Berkeley for some Earl Grey and Ginger ice cream. Friday wrapped up the week with a humorous rally and smashing football game. Senior year is full of stress, but if we focus on making friendships and memories throughout the year, we will be able to push through the hardships as a team. Just a little school spirit can bring anyone out of the dumps – literally.




How To Spend Your Money

If there’s one way to drain your trust fund in a snap, it’s glimmering, glistening jewelry. Take Cartier, for example. The iconic stack of gold bands that Kylie Jenner sports on her wrist is not just worth $35,000; it is, as Cartier itself says, “a universal symbol of love and commitment.”

Jenner’s minimalist bracelets are from Cartier‘s LOVE collection, which includes rings, bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. In 18-carat pink or yellow gold, the LOVE bracelet is $6,600, and in 18-carat white gold, $7,100. Jenner’s diamond-encrusted LOVE bracelet, which she wears less often because she’s a tasteful girl like that, costs $42,600 alone. I could mention the LOVE rings, but for only $1,200, who cares?

Cartier is known around the world for having the highest quality jewelry possible, so you know you are not just paying for the finest quality gold and gems, but for the tiny inscription of the word Cartier on the inside of the bracelet band. But don’t worry about appearing flashy, no one will ever see the Cartier signature. LOVE bracelets lock to your wrist and can be opened only with a screwdriver, to symbolize inseparable love, of course.

When you’re thinking of how to show your high school sweetheart of one month that you really are committed, just ask yourself: bracelet, ring, or necklace: how far would you go for love?




Ode to Theo

Spend all thy time with thy precious kitty cat,

Including thine weekend evenings ritually.

 

Treat thy kitty as thy lover,

With thine utmost affection and care.

Shower thy kitty with thy kisses and cuddles.

 

Ne’er betray thy kitty,

By befriending another fellow fur.

 

Ne’er stray away from thy kittys little beating heart,

For you shall see it is what has loved you from the very start.

And if you shall decide to hurt thy kitty,

Thy powerful kitty will be sure to avenge thee.

 

Be sure to memorize the melody o’ the Aristocats,

For their tune is carried in the depths of thy kittys heart,

And meanwhile serves as a pure rectitude of companionship.

 

Ne’er fault to wear thy own meowing shoes and ears too.

 

Thou furthermore must follow thy kittys daily routine,

Including none other than thy kittys own kibble

 

For, an owner of a precious kitty is much more,

Than just a kitty cat owner.

Thy owner of a kitty is a kittys best friend.




The Most Important Songs of 2014

There have been a lack of pro-feminist and body positivity in the media. It seems to be somewhat of a taboo topic for an unknown reason. But, starting in the 2000’s, things have definitely started to change. Flash-forward to 2014 and enter “All About That Bass” and “Anaconda.” One sends a message about loving the skin that you were born in with a pop background and great vocals to go. The other taks a song that objectified women and turned it into an anthem for loving yourself. While yes, these two songs do have some major flaws (one being that you’re still chasing a man’s approval when you should love yourself because its who you are, the other still promotes objectifying women and says it’s okay to love a man even though he sells narcotics), these songs show a step in the right direction.




Social Situations: The Great Perhaps

I recently read the book Looking for Alaska by John Green. As your average over-stressed and over-scheduled teenager, prior to reading this novel, I hadn’t read a good book outside of my required 12th grade English curriculum in quite some time. Even though I might have been out of the recreational reading game for a while, I can still tell the difference between novels filled with pages spewing out “coming-of-age” garbage and those whose raw grit and angst portrays a more authentic teenage experience. And Looking for Alaska is certainly of the latter variety.

The novel focuses on a teenage boy who leaves behind his mundane life to go off to boarding school in search of the “Great Perhaps.” “I go to seek the Great Perhaps,” are the last words of the famous French renaissance writer François Rabelais, and the main character in the novel, Miles, takes these wise words to heart as he begins a new chapter in his life. It’s the “Great Perhaps” that really got me thinking and set this book worlds apart from any I had read before.

Aren’t we all seeking the Great Perhaps every morning we choose to step out of our front doors? For me, the Great Perhaps encompasses everything from what conversation I’m going to share with my friends at lunch, how my English teacher will respond to my essay, and what memories I’m going to make after school, to where I will graduate from in four years, how I will “make it” in the real world, and who I will eventually become. As most everyone knows, nothing is certain in this life (except for maybe death and taxes), and we live our lives just a moment away from our next “perhaps.”

As the reality that I will be going off to college in just a few short months and incidentally leaving everything I have known and loved behind me in a massive cloud of dust and nostalgia, has started to sink in, I realize now that my next perhaps will be a great one indeed.

I’ve been lucky to have had such a great support system behind me throughout high school, well for all of my life really, but I know that I have grown far too comfortable with the way things have been. I wake up around the same time, eat the same breakfast of oatmeal topped with blueberries and agave syrup, go to the same classes, eat lunch with the same people, drive to my various after school activities in my same car, do homework, eat dinner, do even more homework, and then fall asleep around 11:30 or later just about every single weekday. Despite how routine it may seem, the little quirks, funny conversations, and flashes of life that happen in-between those mundane moments make my life a happy and content one.

Now though, it is time for me to go out and actively seek my Great Perhaps, and not allow myself to become a bystander in my own life. I have no idea who I will be sharing a room with next year, what classes I will take, where I will be living, who I will meet, or if I will even like college, but at the end of the day, I like my chances and wouldn’t trade them for the world.

As this will be my last column I would like to thank each and every one of my readers who have taken time out of their days to read the musings of a silly idealistic high school girl. I know what I have written over the past two years will not change the world, but I hope that for those who have read my columns, what I have written will carry with it some sort of impact, even if it is only for a few fleeting seconds. Maybe our paths will one day intersect again, but in the mean time we have got a lot of seeking to do. So here’s to the Great Perhaps; may yours be filled with much greatness and only a little perhaps.