Scrap Paper Poetry #9: Final Final Finally Finished

Scrap Paper Poetry #9 | Stressing Out College

Final final finally finished:
My mind is numb, all brain waves diminished.
But the year is over and I can easily breathe;
Summer is here, a much needed reprieve.
For the next three months, I’m as free as a bird
And I won’t have to be forced to etch another word
Of a god awful essay or droll presentation,
I can start on my packing for summer vacation.
My hairs are a little grayer
And I’m now relying on Bayer,
But exams have been vanquished-
Final final finally finished.

Well, another year has come to a close and another summer has approacheth’d. I don’t need any excuses for my fauxetry. My brain might now be a charred lump of coal after this past harrowing year, but that ain’t gonna stop me from trying to have a kick ass summer vacation. Fellow stressed out students – rejoice! 

I Regretfully Regret: Cramming for Physics

Wait, wait, I know this isn’t all that original. “A college student procrastinating on important college work? Oh me, oh my.” But hold on and just read the damn post. Humor me.

Indeed, “Procrastination” is my middle name – a middle name I’m sure I share with plenty of you, college students or otherwise.

As you may remember, I recently started a new post series called “I Regretfully Regret” – which was supposed to be weekly, but cut me some slack. I’m a lazy college student, remember? This week, my Regretful Regret is cramming for a physics midterm and here is why:

  1. Physics is damn tough.
  2. What the hell is Bernoulli’s equation again?
  3. When did my handwriting get so bad?
  4. Crap, I can’t figure out half of what I wrote down for notes
  5. Is that a “t” or a “w”?
  6. Calculator… battery dead? Nooooooooo… Must scramble through a dozen and two drawers to find batteries.
  7. 1:43 a.m. – if I finish in half an hour, I’ll still get approximately 5 hours and 47 minutes of sleep
  8. 2 hour session of alternating among studying, YouTubing, and crying
  9. 4:12 a.m. – can still get 3 hours and something something minutes of sleep [oh no, my math skills have died]
  10. Inject emergency caffeine supply into arm. Head to class.

Stay in school, kids, and practice healthy study habits.

Yeah, right.

What is a recent Regretful Regret you have? If you’re a student, do you have any school-related regrets to share? (Don’t lie – we know you have plenty). Share them in the comments!

The Vacation Hangover: Why Short Academic Breaks Suck

Spring Break is the worst. No sooner do you strip into your beach clothes and fling your nubile body into a sea of bad choices than you find yourself (no worse for wear, of course) stranded back in the Land of Higher Learnedness. Fan-freakin-tastic.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – as long as you’re thinking what I’m hypothetically thinking, which is probably likely if you frequently think in Oscar Wilde quotes and dirty limericks –

“Yet another display of the ingratitude of our lazy, worthless youth. Higher education is a privilege! It is only possible for you to experience this opportunity of enlightenment because of the work of my back-breaking generation, young whipper snapper. In my dinosaur-wrangling days, we didn’t even have a spring break! And the only purpose of summer break was so that we could earn our dues working in the fields. You and the rest of you worthless ingrates don’t deserve a break from all the ‘work’ you do flushing your education money down the bloomin’ toilet.”

Yes, I hear ya verbatim.

The technically 9 days of break that we get is not enough for us to relax. It’s like telling us we can sleep in and then waking us up in the middle of REM sleep. This does not a motivated student make.

I got 99 problems and yep, short breaks from school are one of them. Why do we even bother with a few days interrupting the academic year? I’m not quite sure how semesters do it – does spring break split up your semester? With quarters/trimesters, spring break marks the end of the winter term and the beginning of the spring term. Even then, spring break is more of an unsatisfying tease than some long romance. Darn those Bacchus-worshiping Greeks and Colgate University swim jocks. Spring break isn’t freedom. It’s our 30 minute recess before we shuffle back to our cells. According to a comment on this article, all spring break is now “is a bunch of immature, drunken, TOO sexually active teens, and of course rapist on the side line just awaiting another drunk girl to attack.”

Spring Break Drunk at the Beach

Not pictured: Predatory man awaiting anything (expect aspirin)

What has this world come to? Tsk, tsk. O the moral fiber of our country ruined by this one week of bad decisions and illusory freedom. Ha! And for many, it’s just a week of sitting in front of the TV/computer catching up on episodes of Parks and Recreation and re-enacting the days of the freshman 15. And some people are vying for another miniscule breakduring the fall! Do these fools not understand? Do they not see the economy of it? What is better – mini-breaks throughout the year or one lo-o-o-o-ong break over the course of the summer? Either that or give us summer-equivalent breaks throughout the year. Yes, someone get on this now. No more one-weekers – that’s communist crap. Give us three months of breaks at a time! That way, we’ll be refreshed and completely slated clean for those soul-sucking faculty members to try to actually learn us some good edjumacation.

It’s so crazy it just might work. Maybe.

How was your spring break? Feeling refreshed and raring to get back to the daily academic grind? Got any good spring break/vacation stories? (Don’t worry, your shenanigans can’t possibly be traced back to you). 

Keep calm and read on:

On the Fourth Day of Dead Week

Deck the halls with sticky notes, dry erase markings, and shreds of the tattered and battered remains of our sanity as we enter our favorite time of year: Dead Week.

By “we,” I refer to students. And by “year,” I mean term, whether it’s a quarter, trimester, or semester. So… Fa la la la la, la la la la.

The only things standing between us and – nay, guarding with bared teeth and chesty growl – winter freedom are finals. Ah, finals, our old friend. It seems like only a few weeks have passed since we had to encounter your cousins, the midterms. Why so eager for a family reunion? I assure you the midterms were more than enough to tide us over for[ever] a very long time. So please, continue staying at bay off in the distance. Believe us: we like you better there. It’s almost better than having you behind us and out of sight.

Fellow college students, never fear. Hang in there. Stay strong. And golden. For the freedom that lay before us at the end of the following week shall be sweet and pure and holy. Just a few more days, fellow academic warriors, but tonight… we dine in hell – the hell of cramming and crying and procrastinating and repeating. So eat heartily, my friends, and then revel in the just desserts on the horizon, with the sweet corn syrup of success and triumph dripping down your chin.

Study hard and study long! For on the morrow, the winter break is yours for the taking!


THIS IS… an overused meme.

Good luck. And de-stress in the comments section.

Dissecting the Mind of the Frosh

August – it’s the month when you should be aware of Psoriasis, rev your motorcycles, eat paninis, and examine the quality of your drinking water. It’s also back-to-school season, but despite the fact that this blog is college-oriented, I’m not going to be talking about back-to-school savings and advice, yadda, yadda, yadda. Instead, I’m going to be talking about how people like me think. And not just how I think and perceive the world – I’m not that vain – but how my fellow Class of 2015 thinks and perceives the world.

“What the heck are you ranting about?” You may be asking. Let do the talking:

Each August since 1998, Beloit College has released the Beloit College Mindset List, providing a look at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college this fall. The creation of Beloit’s former Public Affairs Director Ron Nief and Keefer Professor of the Humanities Tom McBride, it was originally created as a reminder to faculty to be aware of dated references, and quickly became a catalog of the rapidly changing worldview of each new generation.

On August 22, 2011, Beloit released their 14th “Mindset List” of the incoming college freshman class. The Class of 2015 mostly consists of people like me born in 1993. The list is a general overview of events, ideas, people, and objects that these freshmen take for granted or will never know or experience first-hand. For example, #15 on the list states “O.J. Simpson has always been looking for the killers of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman.” It is only thanks to Google, Wikipedia, my parents’ dinner table conversations, and pop culture references that I know much of anything about O.J. Simpson and how he would have done it “If [He] Did It.”

According to Ron Nief, one of the creators of the list, the “Mindset List” was a sort of reaction to the suggestion that “students graduating from high school aren’t half as smart as their parents.” Mostly, however, it was a serio-comic warning to educators to adjust their teaching style and references to make education more relatable and understandable to students. In other words: stay up to date. Don’t encourage computer students in your class to back up data using a 1.44 MB floppy disk (whatever that is) instead of a 500 GB portable hard drive. If you want your joke to succeed, don’t punctuate the punchline with “churning butter”; end it with “Poke ‘er Face.”

P-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face...

Joke: How do you wake up Lady Gaga?

How accurate is the list? Well, it is a general list and it mostly deals with time. It’s not meant to fit every single member of the incoming first years. The compilers take events and inventions dating before or since 1993 and apply it culturally. Here’s a peek at some of the points on the list:

  • (This begins their list. It’s an unnumbered morbid preface:) Andre the Giant, River Phoenix, Frank Zappa, Arthur Ashe and the Commodore 64 have always been dead. I’m going to be honest. I only know who one of these people are and it’s only because of the movie Princess Bride.
  • As they’ve grown up on websites and cell phones, adult experts have constantly fretted about their alleged deficits of empathy and concentration. What? Psh, I don’t think they give us enough credit. I mean, it’s not like you’re reading this instead of doing something important or worthwhile, like homework, right?… Right?
  • All their lives, Whitney Houston has always been declaring “I Will Always Love You.” “I Will Always Love You…: A Ballad to Heroine.” ((rimshot))
  • They’ve always been able to dismiss boring old ideas with “been there, done that, gotten the T-shirt.”

    You have died of Dysentery

    She looks healthy for having died of dysentery.

  • When they were 3, their parents may have battled other parents in toy stores to buy them a Tickle Me Elmo while they lasted. I have nothing to add.
  • They’ve always wanted to be like Shaq or Kobe: Michael Who? They’ve definitely got this one wrong. Remember Space Jam and that awful movie with Lil’ Bow Wow where he wanted to be Like Mike? (It had that cute kid with the crazy hair and big glasses from Jerry Maguire.)
  • “Yadda, yadda, yadda” has always come in handy to make long stories short. This one is so lame. I mean, I never use… Oh. Never mind.

Check out the whole Class of 2015 list at the Mindset List website. (When you watch the introductory video, a representative touts the greatness of the list and doesn’t miss the opportunity to sneakily tell how how wonderfully, butt-kickingly awesome Beloit is because of the mind-blowing, life-changing list. Just warning you.)

What do you think of the list? Amusing? Revealing? Sad? Annoying? Is there anything you would add to or change about the list? Tell me about it in the comments.