Archive for April, 2007


Pit Stop

Girl on the phone: … And that’s why my boyfriend dumped me.”

Girl 1: I can’t believe the power was out all last night, it’s like we’re living in the 18th Century, only with much cuter outfits.

Girl 1: You still going on a date with that guy tomorrow?
Girl 2: I don’t know. I told him to call me Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday, so I’m waiting on him to call today.
Girl 1: Why all those days?
Girl 2: Sunday to ask me when he’s sober, Wednesday to confirm and Thursday to tell me he’s downstairs and for me to come down.
Girl 1: That’s a little high maintenance isn’t it?
Girl 2: No, high maintenance would be making him come ring the bell on Thursday, he’s getting off lucky.

Girl: You think that monkey’s a girl or boy?
Boy: It’s a girl.
Girl: How do you know?
Boy: It has little hands. Dudes don’t have hands like that (pause) and dudes don’t dress like gorillas.

Girl: You know how he is, he’s always depressed, then he takes his medicine and he’s bouncing off the walls.

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I’m a nerd. I’m one of those people who really likes to read outside of school. So this week I’m going to have to subject readers to a book review. But this is a truly remarkable book that should appeal to anyone who has an interest in history, literature, visual arts, science, music, philosophy or religion. I’m talking about The Intellectual Devotional.

Its subtitle reads “Revive your mind, complete your education, and roam confidently with the cultured class.” And this book accomplishes its goals. Co-authored by David S. Kidder and Noah D. Oppenheim, it is a collection of information about subjects that everyone should know about. Its format is that of a devotional that a person studying religion might use–one entry per day, for a year. Kidder and Oppenheim assigned each day of the week a particular subject matter, listed above. This exposes the reader to entirely different areas every day, allowing the information to soak in even better.

The specific topics span the spectrum of worldly information, from the greenhouse effect (science) to Charles Dickens (literature) to D-day (history). Most of it is information that everyone has learned in school at some point, but somehow reading just one entry a day, on your own terms, makes the facts and implications stick much better. The writing is clear and concise, giving all of the key facts about the subject matter for the day. Spending simply five to ten minutes instills in the reader new knowledge with which he can impress teachers, friends, or any other fellow conversationalists. Entries are each less than a page, so reading one a day doesn’t feel like a chore.

The Intellectual Devotional is currently on the New York Times’ Bestseller List. Both authors have been previously successful in other fields of work, and have written for publications such as the Wall Street Journal. Kidder has a wide range of marketing and technology entrepreneurship experience, while Oppenheim works in print journalism and television, and is currently a producer on NBC’s Today Show.

I haven’t exactly been devoted to reading the Devotional every day–the craziness of life gets in the way every now and then. But the amount of information I have learned and retained from the book has been astonishing. A few days ago in class, I found myself making a connection between the lecture and the information in one of the entries. It is a wonderfully creative idea for a book, and I highly recommend it to anyone who wishes to further their knowledge.

By Annie Murawski

Pit Stop

Girl: “You know me, whenever I get hot I just start stripping.”

Guy 1: “Yo did you see that Cam’ron thing on Youtube where he totally calls out Jay-Z about stealing lyrics?”
Guy 2: “Yeah I saw that…Cam’ron’s just looking to bring Jay-Z down, but he sucks.”
Guy 1: “Yeah. True. I think Lil’ Wayne is gonna be as good as Jay-Z someday though.”
Guy 2: “Yeah, he’s good, but Jay-Z has tenure, ya know?”

Girl: “I should’ve played tennis today.”
Boy: “Why didn’t you?”
Girl: “I was too lazy to be active.”

Girl: “Well, there are two different types of gay guys – the flamboyant ones who can really dance, and then those who are just super awkward, terrible dancers. That guy (points) is one of the awkward ones.”

By Amy Bugno

Let it go

If I could offer one piece of advice to someone, I would advise them to learn how to let go. When I think back on all the reasons why I’ve been really sad these past couple of years, it was because I was unable to follow this very advice.

There are tons of reasons to be upset, and as my junior year slowly fades away, I feel as though I have run into most of these problems myself. Problem one occurred during my freshman year of college. I was excited to make new friends, but I missed the old ones I left behind. I was also very close to my sister who was 16 at the time. As I was away at college it began to upset me to find out she was partying, although I had done the same thing at her age. It was not until I learned to let go and let her grow up that I stopped being upset.

That problem was an easier one to deal with. The harder problem came sophomore year when I realized I had to let go of a friend. My friend and I were very close and we did a lot together, however she got a boyfriend and made new friends that were friends with her boyfriend, and I quickly became aware that I was no longer a part of the formula. Fights emerged and both of us got really upset. In the end both of us thought that the other was wrong and we were in the right. We ended the friendship abruptly and haven’t talked since.

In my opinion, obviously this person was not a good friend in the first place, and I shouldn’t have tried so hard to keep the friendship going. At first when we walked past each other and acted like we didn’t know each other, I was upset. Then I decided to let go of a friendship that was no longer there, and stop letting the memory of it hurt me.

After these two life lessons I thought I would be prepared for my hardest challenge of all, however now I know I still wasn’t ready for what was to come next. After dating for 2 years, my boyfriend, the love of my life, broke up with me because he didn’t have time for a girlfriend. It was a long distance relationship and he was just beginning his exciting career, so it made sense that we should break up.

Months went by and to many people’s surprise I did fine. I hung out with other guys, I talked about my ex with a smile and the tears that did fall were minimal. No one knew the reason why I had taken the breakup so well was because I had convinced myself that after he had established his career and I came home for the summer, we would get back together. I took the breakup so well because I didn’t let him go. When the summer came and went and nothing happened, I continued my hopes.

I’ll never forget the day that that dream came crashing down. It was over fall break and I was in my room when my best friend asked if I had seen her. I asked what she was talking about and she got on Facebook to show me the new girl that my ex had been seeing. All of a sudden it all made sense. My boyfriend and I broke up, not because he didn’t have time for a girlfriend, but because he didn’t have time for me. He was moving on, while I was biding my time until he came back.

At this point I wish I could say I let him go, but a part of me still clung on. Because a good part of me did give up at this moment, for the next month tears came pouring and the reality of it all sank in. The only thing really keeping me going was the tiny part of me that thought maybe if he saw me again, maybe over Christmas break, things could be different. It wasn’t.

Over Christmas break, a few days before Christmas, I was at a party playing beer pong and he walked in the door, with her. My heart dropped. The room got smaller and smaller and I suddenly felt like I couldn’t breathe. I stared at the girl who was holding the same hand I had held a million times. It was the worst moment of my life. Had I completely let go before that night I wouldn’t have been as hurt as I was at that moment, I wouldn’t have felt so betrayed. But I had been a fool and in a way I had brought on most of the pain myself.

I excused myself from the room without making a scene and I quietly snuck out of the party. No one saw or heard me cry. A couple minutes later I got calls wondering where I had went, but I didn’t answer them, assuming they would figure it out, my close friends especially. I never talked to my ex again, and I finally let him go. While that night and many other painful nights could have been avoided many months before if I had just let him go, I was forced to suffer them late in the game.

A couple months ago I wouldn’t have been able to tell this story, but now I’m okay with it, because I’ve finally let go. There will always be a little pain, but that’s normal. Had I let me ex go when I should have, I would have felt the way I do now, last June or July, and these past couple months would have gone a lot smoother for me.

I’ve learned through these life experiences in college that you just have to let things go. Accept the fact that nothing is forever, and some people were put into our lives to only stay for a little while. When those people are ready to leave, let them go. Don’t grip on too tightly to the memories they left behind or fall into a nostalgic nightmare of “the way it use to be.” For your sake, let them go.

The end of the school year is always the time when roommate tensions reach an unbearable high. I have compiled a list of all of your burning questions as to how to deal with all of your specifically horrific roommate situations. As a person who has lived with six different people in six semesters, I have experience in dealing with these issues and have attempted to provide you with the best wisdom possible.

Dear Sophia,
My roommate’s bladder is the size of a pistachio. She constantly wakes up throughout the night to use the restroom. This would not concern me, but she insists on slamming the door every time she exits the room. As a result, I jerk awake every hour and can not get a good night’s rest. I’ve tried earplugs, but they just don’t cut it. What should I do?
-Sleepless in Spencer

Dear Sleepless,
Just ask your roommate to sleep in the bathroom. Problem solved!

Dear Sophia,
I live with two people that hate each other. They both love me, but the tension is so thick you could cut it with a knife. I cannot go on living in such a hostile environment. How can I broker peace?
-All Quiet on the North Campus Front

Dear Quiet,
Stay quiet. Keep them loving you. You’ll be out of here in a month, might as well play both sides of the field for the next couple weeks.

Hey Sophia,
My roommate leaves his leftovers in my refrigerator all the time. He stacks pizza boxes by the door and never takes them out. I’m sick of the stink in our room and having to take care of the trash all the time. How can I make him recognize what he’s doing and how he’s driving me crazy?
-Not the Garbage man

Dear Garbage,
Next time, instead of taking his trash out to the dumpster, put it all on his bed. Trust me, he won’t forget next time.

Well, that’s it for me this month. Keep sending me your burning questions, and I’ll do my best to keep the flame alive. Next year, just get a single!

Let’s take a poll. Which is more important: identifying the father of Anna Nicole Smith’s baby, or the state of Maryland proposing to drop out of the Electoral College? If you think like the wonderful writers at CNN, it’s the former.

Last night I was bored at work, and decided to educate myself on the daily happenings around the world. When I went to CNN.com, the main picture was of a man in a suit cheering, surrounding by smiling police officers and other bystanders.

Was it a politician winning an election? Some humanitarian do-gooder winning an award? An unusually enthusiastic scientist celebrating a life-changing discovery? Nope. It was Larry Birkhead cheering at the results of the paternity test of the child he and the late Anna Nicole Smith had together. Then, at the very bottom of the page, there was a link to an article about Maryland potentially eliminating the use of the Electoral College in their state, as a catalyst to change the electoral process without having to go through the burdensome process of amending the Constitution.

Maybe I’m just a politics nerd, but I think it’s pretty important to know about a proposed change to a process that has been in place as long as our nation has been around. While it may not be as soap-operatic as the drama about figuring out who fathered the baby of a dead woman, it certainly deserves viewable placement on the website of one of the top news agencies in the country.

But no, it is instead hidden at the bottom of the page, overshadowed by stories about figuring out who the father of a child is, the arrest record of an MTV reality show star, and an article entitled “Trendy Snoring Solution: Two Master Bedrooms”.

I’m not trying to totally knock CNN. I read their articles on a regular basis, and they are always informative and well-written. However, their choice of which topic to use to entice readers doesn’t say much about Americans, other than highlighting our superficiality and love of all things trite.

I just wish that a “news” organization would not play into that mindset. Their job to present the news to readers. Public opinion is controlled primarily by what we are exposed to by the news, and voter turnout is already horribly low. If most Americans apparently don’t care about politics, those who do try to keep themselves informed should have easy access to that information.

So, perhaps the main article on a news website shouldn’t be the place to go to find the latest celebrity news. After all, what will we do with the fine journalists at the National Enquirer if CNN.com keeps telling us all we need to know about who is sleeping with whom in Hollywood?

By Annie Murawski

Pit Stop

Girl: “I like lab.”

Guy: “You’re not studying. I just saw you stalk like 5 girls in a minute.”

Guy: “We should try to make this funny. Let’s try to make up some joke about masturbation…people will listen. The professor will think it’s funny.”

Guy: “Dude, it’s pretty hard. Look at it. We could be here all night. Please tell me you’re the type that can do this all night.”

Guy 1: “Oh dude, you’re gonna love this…oh dude!! Do you know where this is going?!? I don’t think you know where this is going. I’m going crazy about this math problem…look…parabolic integer to the negative ellipsis plus or minus the depreciative. That’s it! Cha-ching, cha-china.
Guy 2: “Dude, I’m gonna go get some more caffeine.”

By Christie Koriakin

Girls need a lookout too

We’ve all heard about the “wingman” that guys insist on having close by every night when they go out to bars. Here’s how it usually plays out: Steve meets Sally at the bar. Steve wants to talk to Sally and possibly hook up with her, but Sally’s friend Melinda won’t leave them alone. Steve depends on his wingman, Mitch, to distract Melinda so that he can run his game on Sally. Mitch does so, and it is understood that Steve will return the favor the next time the boys go out together.

However, wingmen are not just for the male of the species, my friends. Although they might not be as well-known or expected, the female equivalent of the wingman is essential to every girl’s night out on the town. A wing-girl plays a somewhat different role, in that most of the time rather than helping her friend get close with Mr. Random Dude, she’s pulling her aside to tell her the guy is not-so-attractive or wonderful, and helping her escape his predatory gaze. In addition to clearing off her friend’s drunk-goggles, the responsibilities of the wing-girl include holding back the hair of her vomiting friend, alerting said friend when she’s reached her limit, and essentially making sure her friend goes home with all that she left with (purse, shoes, jacket, dignity, etc.).

So here’s my advice to you, girls of Chapel Hill:

  • Make sure at least one girl in your posse is playing wing-girl for the night. It’s bad news when one of your friends goes home with a shady guy, but even worse when a whole group of you do it.
  • Keep an eye on who’s buying your friend drinks and how many he’s buying. I’m not saying you have to count drink for drink, but try to take notice.
  • Be aware of your friend’s sober standards. If a guy doesn’t quite meet them, let her know about it.
  • Keep tabs on how much you’ve had to drink as well. No one likes a drunken wing-girl telling her what to do.
  • Understand that your friend may be mad at you for a minute or two, but will most likely get over it within minutes… and thank you in the morning.
  • Make sure you’re not assigned wing-girl duty night after night, because that just makes you a babysitter to be taken advantage of.
  • If you are not the wing-girl for the night, remember to listen to what your friend tells you. She obviously cares about you enough to try to help you out, so let her. Trust her.
  • Don’t forget to return the favor, everyone can use a night off from heavy drinking anyway.

Take it or leave it, as cliché as it sounds, your friends are more important than the arbitrary frat boy you meet at the bar. Enjoy yourself, flirt it up, sing some karaoke, but if nothing else, get a wing-girl. You’ll thank me (and her) later.

By Amy Bugno

Blue & White fun raising

Our first promo event of the semester went well. We hijacked a table outside of Eringhaus and covered it with nuclear brownies, cake squares, cupcakes, S’more goods, Harris Teeter Ginger Ale, Coke, Caffeine Free Coke and issues of the Blue & White March issue.

Managing editor Robin and I slaved over a hot stove to make the cakes and cupcakes. Publisher LeeAnn made the brownies. There was a not-so-quiet competition between us to see who liked which better. Despite the fact that LeeAnn cooked two brownie boxes at the same time and the outside edges were burnt while the inside was gooey, people seemed to enjoy the brownies more. Life would work that way, wouldn’t it?

The ginger ale was our major selling point. People passed up free desert for a cup. Pretty soon campus editor Jonathan was using that to draw people in.

And despite pollen being thick in the air and a cold front descending upon us, we handed out issues of Blue & White, introducing the magazine to people who’d never read it before. That’s success! Hopefully they read it.

Body Worlds 2 Review

While in Chicago over spring break, I visited the Museum of Science and Industry.The main attraction at the museum was BODY WORLDS 2: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies.

Through a process called Plastination invented by Dr. Von Hagens in 1977, real human bodies are preserved and presented in artistic ways. Body Worlds 2 features more than 200 real human bodies. The bodies are configured in different ways, including whole-body
Plastinates, individual organs, organ configurations and transparent body slices. More than 20 million people have viewed the exhibits, and it was even featured in a scene of the movie Casino Royale.

Body Worlds are unique exhibitions through which visitors can learn about anatomy, physiology, and health. Since I’m currently taking a course in anatomy and physiology, this exhibit was a real treat for me to experience. It is one thing to learn about the human body by reading about it in a textbook, and another to see such an extensive exploration of real human bodies.

The imaginative poses and displays were so different from anything that I had ever seen that at times I forgot I was looking at real human bodies. The exhibition also allows visitors to see and better understand the long-term impact of diseases, the effects of tobacco consumption and the mechanics of artificial supports such as knees and hips.

I encourage anyone who is interested to check out this exhibit before it leaves the United States and heads over to Canada. For more information, you can check out http://www.msichicago.org/temp_exhibit/bodyworlds2/index.html.

By Sophia Malik