five antisocial distractions for social distancing

This month has been super interesting hahaha!! Somehow despite all the absolutely goofy (read: scary) things that’ve been happening internationally lately, my studio apartment has not gotten any more interesting than it was before. Luckily I was raised by a very busy single parent, which all latchkey kids know means I am well versed in the art of entertaining myself. As a kid this meant a game my sister and I played, aptly named ‘try not to get hit in the head with a rusty bar’– a game with very few winners. As an adult my attempts to entertain myself have a lower risk of concussion, but are still fairly effective. So I thought I’d collect a list of things I’ve been up to lately that have made social distancing a little more enjoyable.

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dark academia- poorly lit and poorly thought out

When I joined the studyblr-sphere in 2014, the dark academia aesthetic was a popular, if not the most popular, photo and photo editing style in the community, though it’s worth noting that it was not called that at the time. But the images were pretty much the beginning and the end of it. Over the years, that style fell out of popular use in favor of the brighter, crisper editing we see tons of today. For the past year or so, however, dark academia has been back with a vengeance. At first sight it encompasses pretty much the same things it did when I was first introduced to it: low lit pictures, a focus on classical and gothic architecture, and a general appeal to subjects in the humanities. I find this and basically any other aesthetic harmless in and of itself, and I even appreciate many of the images associated with it. But there are new characteristics to the trend that I don’t like, and I’m surprised they receive as little criticism as they do.

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having a mental health spill during the school year

At the end of Christmas break this year, I found myself looking forward to returning to school. It’s always hard for me to leave my family again after quite some time apart, but the freshness and renewed dedication most people feel surrounding the new year had me excited to get back to studying. As much as I like petting my dogs and hanging out with my sister, there isn’t really anywhere to place New Year’s resolution fervor there. Should I pet my dogs harder? Hang out with my sister more aggressively? I don’t think me, my sister, or my dogs really want that. Applying this sense of motivation makes more sense in my academic life, so I was looking forward to getting back to it.

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books so ~fall~ they’ll make you astral project into a pumpkin

As the ever astute athenastudying on tumblr (AKA Meike) has recently reminded me, summer is coming to an end and with it any hopes of finishing my ambitious summer reading list. Though I am looking forward to sweating marginally less in the Berlin subway system and finally being able to break out my expansive turtleneck collection without seeming– ah what’s the word– ridiculous, I will now have significantly less time to read than I did this summer. On the bright side, I feel that many books are better read in the seasons to which they apply. If I’m going to read about foggy mornings and crisp air, I’d prefer to not be reading it while I sweat from my literal butt. So in the spirit of the changing of the seasons (Two Door Cinema Club please don’t sue), wrap yourself in a cable knit blanket, snort a pumpkin spice latte, and enjoy some autumnal reads that really bob my apples.

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how to read like you did when you were twelve before you lost your attention span

When I first got my iPod touch in the 7th grade I used to use its screen as a flashlight so I could secretly read past my bedtime instead of actually using the iPod touch. Now I have the attention span of a gnat and exactly one million unread books on my shelves, but over the past two years I’ve slowly been getting back into reading. Here are a couple tips and tricks I’ve used over the last few years to combat the feeling that I’ve been getting progressively more average since middle school (and to read more).

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the homesick restaurant

Today I miss my mom. I miss my best friends, walking my dogs, and driving my car, but it’s the day after Mother’s Day when I’m writing this so most of all I miss my mom. Growing up, my vision of my future college life changed a lot. When I was twelve (and objectively my most annoying) I wanted to study law at Harvard. At 14 I wanted to study aerospace engineering at anywhere that would accept me- I then took my first physics class and immediately crossed that off the list. At 16 I wanted to study chemical engineering in Germany, and now four years later that’s what I’m doing. What I never particularly planned on was missing my mom this much. Continue reading “the homesick restaurant”

how to do public speaking and not cry simultaneously

When I was in eighth grade, I once had to memorize a poem I had written and present it aloud from memory in my english class. Why they would give us this assignment when our hormones and ability to write poetry were objectively at their worst, I’m not really sure, but it had me stressin. I ended up making it about four lines in before crying, running out of the classroom, and staying in the bathroom until after the class had ended.

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