Tuesday, April 16, 2013

How to make it through your freshman year of college in one piece

In 3 weeks, I will wrap up my first year at college. The weather is growing hotter, my motivation is growing smaller, and my final exams are growing closer. 

The whole ordeal has gotten me all worked up and emotional. College has definitely treated me well, and I am sad to see my time here fly by. In honor of my successful first year, I have compiled a list of advice from mistakes I have witnessed and mistakes I have made. Hopefully this list will help incoming freshmen have an even smoother transition into college than me. 

DON’T be a vegetarian. (Or, try really hard not to be.) You will eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from the UC every day, twice a day for the whole semester.

DO visit the Media Center in the library. They have “Magic Mike” to rent for free! 

DON’T postpone writing assignments to the last minute. It’s a lie – you don’t do your best work at 3 a.m. in the morning.

DO buy an Ethernet cord if you live in a dorm.

DON’T tell your roommate you will stock toilet paper for the rest of the semester. It will seem like a nice gesture at the time, but after 3 weeks, you will judge them secretly every time you hear a flush.

DO get lost while driving around. This is the best way to get to know the city. 

DON’T use too much soap in the washing machines in the dorms. The washing machines will retaliate and refuse to drain your clothes, leaving you with a huge, soapy mess.

DO befriend the food service ladies and gentlemen. They will make sure you don’t get crunchy tortillas for the rest of your time at college. 

DON’T room with your best friend if you want to keep them as your friend at all.

DO report problems to the maintenance department in a polite and civilized way. If something is wrong with your dorm, it deserves to be fixed. 

DON’T rush into a job before you know how you can balance schoolwork and your social life. 

DO befriend your RA. They are for the most part normal people, and will give you helpful advice. 

DON’T text while riding your bike on the sidewalk. You will fall down, and handsome guys will see it.  

DO use RateMyProfessor.com. Don’t ruin your semester by accidentally signing up for the toughest Spanish professor. 

DON’T pull through the parking spaces. It’s a classic freshman mistake, and you will get a ticket before you turn off the engine.

DO buy rain boots. It may not rain in your part of the world often, but when it does, you might as well swim to class. 
DON’T give extremely religious people your phone number.

DO download the MyFitnessPal app and go to the gym often.

DON’T buy an expensive $30 planner. Odds are, you will forget it in your dorm. Instead, use your phone to save due dates using your Calendar app and to write notes using the Reminder app. 
DO buy Twin XL sheets when possible. They are impossible to find during the school year.

DON’T gripe about members on group projects on Facebook or Twitter. You will get called a “cyber bully” and will feel like a terrible person.

DO take time to decorate your dorm room, but don't go overboard.

DON’T overpay for water. At HEB, you can get a gallon of water for 25 cents using their dispenser outside of the building.

DO follow your college's Facebook and Twitter accounts to get notifications for free t-shirts and other cool stuff. 
DON’T cook cinnamon rolls in the microwave. If you don’t know how microwaves work, don’t use them at all. You will make the smoke detector go off, and everyone will hate you.

Monday, April 8, 2013

I MADE A WORDLE! It's 2008 all over again!

My first Pintrosity: How I developed an irrational hatred of lace, fabric glue, and hoochie mamma shorts.

So, this is the story all about how my friend and I stayed up until 3 a.m. working on a Pinterest project that turned into a complete disaster and cost us $30.

The night began calmly, as most nights like this tend to do. We were hanging out at a free Stoney LaRue concert on campus when we saw a girl walk by who was wearing the cutest white lace shorts.

"We could do that!" we said to each other.

And so our spur-of-the-moment Pinterest adventure began.

First up: Academy. We picked up our white Sofie shorts for $6. Morale among the troops was high. 

Next up: Walmart. This is where we first ran into trouble. 

"How much lace do you think we need?" my friend asked me. 

"Heck if I know." I said. 

We stared at the rows of lace on spools for 30 minutes or so. They might as well have been ancient Egyptian artifacts or trigonometry homework. 

"This spool says 3 yards... Maybe you need 2?" I said, squinting to read the small print.

"Are you saying I have a big butt, Rachel??" my friend said. 

Similar banter carried on for another 30 minutes as we finally decided to get 2 spools, 6 yards a piece, for our project. 

"We should find the fabric glue now," my friend said. 

Now this is where I screwed up royally. I should have said "Okay, awesome." I should have kept my big mouth shut because I didn't know what I was talking about. But I didn't. 

"We should try to sew the lace on the shorts!" I said. I was genuinely excited about sewing. Sewing was fun. People sewed things on Pinterest all the time, and their projects turned out okay. 

"Think about how awesome it would be to tell people we sewed our awesome lace shorts!" I said. 

I would ask my friend later that night why she didn't tell me straight up that sewing was an awful idea, and that I was a huge moron. But she didn't, and an hour later, we checked out at Walmart with a tiny sewing kit, 12 yards of lace, and some on-sale Easter candy. 

Third up: My dorm room. We set up our mini sweat shop and got to work. My friend taught me to thread a needle, and we went to town. I turned out to be an awesome sewer and quickly got ahead of her, to her dismay. 

15 minutes into our labor, I realized that we were going to need more lace. I told my friend, and she didn't believe me. She was in denial. Who knew that circumference was about 3 times bigger than the diameter of one leg? 

30 minutes later, we realized that sewing by hand was the worst idea ever and that we would still be sewing lace onto these dang shorts on graduation day. 

An hour later, my friend finally believed me that we would need more lace. Tensions arose. We decided to go back to Walmart and buy more lace and some fabric glue. 

Fourth up: Walmart (again). Graveyard shift workers gave us creepy looks as we stared at the lace for another hour and tried to do math in our heads. The fabric glue and the lace cost us another $13. We could buy lace shorts for the amount of money that we were spending trying to make them.

Fifth up: My friend's cold, hard dorm room floor. Fabric glue worked well, and was exponentially faster than sewing.

"It's starting to look like the picture!" my friend said. 

(But they really didn't look like the picture. Our shorts looked like slutty, old-woman panties. We were in denial.)

"Maybe these shorts are salvageable after all." I said. Morale rose again. We finished our shorts quickly and used her hair dryer to set the glue. 

"Time for the final test: trying them on," my friend said. This was it. The ultimate test. I went into the bathroom and tried to wiggle them onto my butt. 

"Houston, we have a problem," I announced. The shorts were not going over my hips. The glue lost its adhesiveness and the lace began to unravel. I felt like a bloated mummy. I came out of the bathroom and saw my friend's shorts. She was having the same problems as I was, but at least hers actually fit. 

"Yeah. This was the worst idea ever," I said. 

"I totally agree. I look like a hoodrat hoochie mama," my friend said. 

"Time to throw in the towel?" I asked. 

"I believe so," she said. 

Not surprisingly, it took only 3 minutes to unwind the lace from the shorts. All that work and money was reduced to a pile of sticky lace on her bathroom floor. We laughed out of despair and to keep from crying. I begrudgingly walked to my room with sticky shorts in hand and the remainder of my cheap sewing kit. 

So that's the story about my first Pintrosity.  At the moment, I am looking for an easier Pinterest project to complete so I can rebuild my broken self esteem. Hopefully this blog post makes you feel better about your life. I mean, at least you didn't waste 6 hours and $30 by making a hoodrat hoochie mamma version of this: