Thursday, December 16, 2010

The College Diet

I promised everyone that I would post some better dieting tips, since most dieting plans are simply just unreasonable. However, instead of teaching you how to "portion" (I still think this is a myth), how to "reduce calories" and how to lose weight - I am going to teach you how to save money, something more important, I think. There are five important staples in the College Diet - all very essential for a successful college experience.

  • Coffee/Redbull (Well Just Caffeine in General) - There is really only one way to make it through a paper, a night of studying or to stay awake long enough to get extra partying in on a Friday night - caffeine. When you start to feel your eyelids weighing themselves down, attempting to force you into sleep, just drink more caffeine. Sleep is only necessary after college, there is really no way to fit in partying, video games, movie watching, concerts, football games, basketball games and homework without losing tons of sleep (studies saying loss of sleep during college can reduce life expectancy are just stupid). So there is a simple fix, fill in sleep with caffeine. Since Redbull isn't cheap and we are all broke, there is also a drink known as Rhino. Rhino is a much cheaper version of Redbull (MUCH CHEAPER) which tastes very similar and gets the job done (great for Jager bombs, since you are drunk anyway and won't notice any taste difference!).
  • Spaghetti - None of us have any money, and if you do - stop reading this blog and go buy a personal trainer or something because you obviously don't need my help. Anyway, something that is perfect for college life is spaghetti. It costs like 1-2$ per box of spaghetti or linguine or rigatoni or whatever etti, ine, or oni noodles you prefer. It is also really inexpensive to buy marinara sauce to top these delicious carbohydrates. And that is also why they are such an important staple - carbs. What better way to prepare for exams and the day than cheap and delicious carbs. My roommate successfully eats like six boxes of spaghetti a day and he is always full of energy (it could just be that he is an idiot, but I am going to go with the spaghetti).
  • Chicken - Spaghetti can't be the only thing in your diet because you must have some protein in your diet. Frozen chicken breasts are the perfect solution, cheap, delicious, high in protein and low in fat. The only problem is once you eat your 178th chicken breast in one semester, it doesn't seem to taste like chicken anymore - more like tofu or soy because the flavor is just blehhh. However, there is a fix for this. Hot sauce, chicken seasonings and more hot sauce. Which brings me to my next staple...
  • Hot Sauce - There isn't much I really need to say about this necessity... it is just awesome. Hot sauce can make boring chicken better, pizza taste better, rice taste better... the list just goes on forever really. (Crystal hot sauce is a very good choice, not too hot and full of flavor).
  • Natty Light - This beer is incredibly cheap and I like the taste (well sort of)! You really can't go wrong when you can purchase thirty of these beers for between 11.99$ and 13.99$... you really can't beat that with any other beer (except for Keystone which kind of tastes like metal). Since you can't really go through college without drinking about twelve hundred or so beers, Natty Light should become a staple in every College home, apartment or dorm. So take my word for it, once you have a few, you really won't notice the difference in taste between this and a PREMIUM!(not really, all American yellow beers are crap) Bud Light. It is also low in calories!
It really is not easy to eat healthy in college, since healthy foods are usually more expensive and more difficult to prepare. When time and money are an essence, take my advice and stock your place with spaghetti, natty light, frozen chicken, coffee and hot sauce. You won't be disappointed, and you can just run off the extra calories at the gym - because you are obviously going, doesn't every college student? And you can use this calorie calculator to see how far you must run to beer off the seventeen Natty Lights you drank the night before. Diet complete.

Also... look into buying a Natty Caddy

Plus I found this new blog on dating advice from women for men... seems pretty funny so far, this post was pretty funny (it was too long so I haven't read it all yet, but she called the post Kardashian sized, big butt, get it? funny right...) Anyway, I figure a lot of College students really need dating advice so I think my next post will be about the - I don't want to date you, I just want to "hang out" until we can't have sex and just be friends anymore, that pretty much every college male employs at one point or another.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Testing Tips -

So recently I added a few blogs to my blog roll, one of them being The Healthy Life Tips blog. I was reading over this blog and noticed it is similar to my blog, since it gives you life tips. Then I realized that was about the only similarity that was involved. This blog was not funny, the tips were very different, nothing involving organization or life effectiveness. So i had an idea, I would try out a few of these tips and share my experiences.

  • Yoga - So I sat on my floor, yoga position, ready to "develop self-focus, control and body awareness." I lasted about 17 1/2 seconds before my ADD kicked in when I heard something funny on T.V. So I decided to try again, with the T.V. off this time. I got into position and realized that my legs just did not work quite like the lady in the picture, so I decided to give up. Yoga sucked, I decided it just isn't for everyone, much like exercise and other healthy life choices. Just kidding, everyone should exercise - yoga is just dumb.

  • How to Lose Weight in Seven Easy Steps - The first step was confidence - I had that one completely under control. I just said loudly to myself, "I'M GONNA DO THIS!" Confidence - check. Step two, goal-setting. They write that setting a realistic goal is very important, something very achievable is best since you won't become discouraged. So I did just that, I set a realistic goal - lose one pound in the next week. This is very reasonable I think. Step three, limiting calorie intake. How much should I limit? So I decided removing one cookie and one beer a day would reduce my calories by almost 200. Perfect. Step four, remove junk food. I skipped this step - just not plausible. The next step was planning my meals - this is easy enough right? There is never an issue with scheduling as a College student. So i set up a schedule - Breakfast - most likely skip it, no time. Lunch - sometime between 11am and 4pm depending on classes and whether or not I skipped breakfast. Dinner - sometime between 5pm and 9pm depending on lunch. Second dinner - between 10pm and 3am, depending on whether or not Panda is having there late-night buffet and whether or not I have been drinking. The next step was reducing my portions, I decided this was also not possible - I decided to give up, this weight loss thing sucked too.

  • Sauna Health Benefits - So I decided to try this sauna thing, I turned my bathroom into a sauna using the shower. This may seem implausible, but can someone please tell me where to find an actual sauna? They aren't exactly common. This seemed to be going well as I sat on a chair in my bathroom with steam swirling around me. However, three problems arose - the smoke alarms were set off outside, I got really hot, and our magazines got really soggy and wrinkly. My room mates weren't very happy about my sauna idea, so I decided to write this one off as a fail as well.
So I came to one conclusion - healthy living is really tough. I give tons of props to those able to "adjust food portions" (I quote it because I still think this is a myth, who eats those ridiculously small portions, especially when supersizing is only like 30 cents, seriously... seriously). Also, I was completely unable to find any benefits from Yoga and I still believe that those people doing yoga out on the mall of UMD or at yoga classes, are just pretending something is actually happening. I would much rather watch Daniel Tosh or South Park to relax, laughter is the best medicine remember! So I plan to give you guys much more reasonable tips, things that are truly possible to accomplish. Tune in next week for my next attempt at following another blog's tips and explaining why they are just unreasonable...

also watch this, it's funny... kind of how my stomach acted when I attempted smaller portions... it wasn't very willing to accept it.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Organization - Never Necessary Until it is Necessary

First off, instead of a motivational poster - I just want to say that I finally got around to attempting an cartoon to add to this post, so please let me know if it sucks or not, thanks.

So I have this really, really, really big problem (I don't actually think I can truly represent the true bulk of this problem with words, so I will leave it at that). Imagine this - every morning you wake up, the sun is bright and beautiful and immediately you are in the best of moods. You shower, the water is a perfect temperature, warming and relaxing every part of your body. You leave the shower feeling clean and totally refreshed. I check the clock, for once I am on time and everything is going perfectly - NICE. I make a boisterous breakfast worthy of at least a king or four and I continue to just feel freaking awesome. I gather my books for class, and I grab my laptop and toss everything into my backpack. I am ready to go! Or so I think, keys? UMD ID card? Wallet? None of them are anywhere to be found. Excellent, I have an extra six whole minutes until I need to leave for class - of course I can find them right? You have to be kidding... I need three days to find the things that I lose (seeing as my room looks something like a post nuclear holocaust, riddled with clothes, books, papers and other miscellaneous objects). I look around for twenty minutes, no luck. Screw it, I will find them later I think and I scurry off to class, late again....

Does anyone else have this problem? I know I am not the only one - not everyone can be perfectly organized like that perfect person who is just perfect and neat and organized (bahh I hate those people). Okay back to my point, plenty of people have this kind of problem. I propose a few fixes for this type of problem.

  • The Back-up Wallet - Okay, so you are the guy that leaves his wallet in the jeans he drunkenly wore last night. These jeans are now somewhere completely lost to all mankind (under your bed, bottom of the hamper, in your room mates room, etc.). You have no chance of finding the damn thing before your class starts or before you become so hungry that you eat your own fingers (and you can't cook dinner either because you have been too lazy to go to the grocery store for the last four days). Simple fix, the back up wallet. This guy contains the bare essentials that we need for survival as college students. Money - somewhere between the three dollars needed to buy 3 tacquitos from 7-11 and twenty dollars to buy a lot more tacquitos. This wallet also contains something like a dominoes gift card (or subway if you are the healthy type). Now if you are as bad as me, this wallet will contain another essential - the backup swipe (Student ID).

  • The Back-up Swipe - Throughout my life at Maryland, I have lost somewhere around... twelve to fifteen swipes (I can't be sure because I often find lost swipes and then re-lose them). Therefore I have found it has become very important for me to have backups ready. When I am late for class, swipe is nowhere to be found and time is of the essence, I can simply grab my backup until the original is found. (and hope that I don't lose this one too).

  • The Special Spot - Now for a chance to NOT lose everything in the first place. Think of this - everything that is important for daily function, is always in the same spot. Go to Target and buy one of those sticky 3M hook thingamajiggys and stick it somewhere in your room - we will name it "The Key Hook." Now whenever your keys leave your pocket or purse or man bag (I won't judge) you can put them on this hook and you will never again lose them. Now, somewhere on your desk create a cellphone/wallet/ID/(whatever else you carry) friendly environment. This could be just empty space, a spot on a shelf, or a special little station to store all of this stuff. You should also find a way to route a charger for your cell phone as well. This will help make sure that you don't lose your phone because it is off charging somewhere random in your house or apartment.

Not only will you feel more organized, you won't keep losing your shit. Can you imagine that? No more lost phones, no more lost keys, no more lost wallet - a dream come true. My room mates always complain about my things being scattered across our apartment, a phone in this corner, wallet in this corner, hat under the couch, and more. If I could impliment these exact ideas - none of this would ever happen. I'm trying, eventually I will get into a routine and life will be more simple.... trust me... Have faith in me (cuz I don't).

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Pre-Holiday Plan

Every year, before I head home for breaks, I always do the same things. First off, I handle all of my laundry. By handle my laundry I really mean that I let it pile up for the few weeks prior to break. Why would I do my laundry? I am heading home and I won't have to see this place for at least a few days, right? Secondly, I handle the dishes. By that I also mean, I let them all pile for the same basic reasoning. Then I let things pile up in my room, assignments pile up that are due after break and I become extra lazy in general. This all would be fine, if you are the type of person that does homework on break and enjoys coming home to a shit hole of a room after break. However, I am neither of those people. On break I enjoy eating tons of food, drinking beer with friends, and forgetting to do my readings and assignments. This presents a pressing issue - nothing is accomplished before or during break. Therefore leaving me with piles of work, laundry and dishes to deal with after break is over (something very depressing to return to).

So I propose a fix to this issue - the pre-holiday anti-disaster plan. Sit down a week or two before Thanksgiving break, or Spring break, and make a list. This list should start with all of the things that you need to keep up with or deal with before you go home - laundry, dishes, cleaning, readings, etc. Not to be mistaken with a day planner, this is an extended list of very specific tasks. Then write down everything that will be due in the final weeks of school. This can be exams, papers, or projects. There is nothing more depressing than coming back to school and realizing you have more work than expected. By writing it all down, nothing will be unexpected. Not only that, you could start working on these assignments a week early (since we all know you won't do it during the break). Then when you finally make it back to school after break - life will be stress free. People don't realize how good of a feeling that is - two weeks left stress free. You have no dishes or laundry, no assignments sneaking up on you and you have a plan to finish all of your work - post holiday disaster prevented.

I also want to take a moment to say - PLEASE DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE!!!! For sooooo many reasons... Drinking and driving can lead to so many life ending results. I have friends that have received DUIs and they are horrible. You can't drive for a year a more, your insurance becomes impossibly expensive and you may lose your job or job opportunities in the future. All of these are really, really life changing and they are the best case scenario of a drunken driving incident. You could kill someone or kill someone else. I know that everyone has heard this 100 times over and I am not going to drag it out talking about it - I will just toss you a few statistics. In 2008 there were 37,000 driving fatalities with 13,000 of them being alcohol related. That means 1/3 of the driving related fatalities are alcohol related as well - a pretty remarkable statistic. can lead you to a few more stats, none of them good. So when you go out drinking, please bring a DD or just sleep there, or get a hotel. I hate sleeping in a bed other than my own as much as the next guy, but in the end it is worth it to possibly save a life (possibly even your own).

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Day Planner - Helping us Stay Punctual and Organized Since they Haven't Invented Teleporters

I wake up, take a shower, get dressed and head to my 10am Philosophy course - a seemingly normal day. I sit in Philosophy, laptop open, checking my fantasy football roster - I drop a few players, add a few - continually a normal day. I decide to open up Myumd and check to see if I have anything to pay for - I do, it has been due for over a month (that means a late charge). And even worse... I was supposed to register five days ago! SHIT! So I look at the walk in hour for English, perfect, after my last class. Then I look again for extra measure and of course... I have to check in with Arts and Humanities too, again, SHIT! So I look up their walk in hours, they end at 11.. it is 10:35. I stand up in the middle of lecture, grab my things and book it the hell out of there. I make it, perfect. There is no line, superb. I get everything taken care of and head to my next class without being late (it was at 11am). I finish class and make it to English advising. I look up the one class that I really want to take - yes it is still open! I sign in, wait for walk ins to start, finish up advising (Pointless of course). Everything lined up so perfect, why would I ever do things on time again?? I walk into the hall boot up my laptop, it takes about 17 minutes to boot because it sucks. I open up Testudo shoot into the drop/add section, AND!! My class is full, FML.

Then I go to class the next day and I sit down, pop quiz - perfect I did the reading. Except actually, I forgot to write down the changes to the reading - I bombed the quiz. Perfect, glad I did the reading for once.

This all could have easily been prevented by one of two things, a calendar or a daily planner. I never write things down, I never make it to advising before I am scheduled to register, and I am always late for important things. I am terrible at doing assignments on time, I am always pulling allnighters (much like other students are doing as well). I can also say that I am not the only person doing this, my room mate is also pretty similar and so are many of my friends. I hear tons of kids talking about how tired they are from being up all night writing a paper or studying for the exam. If only all of us had a day planner to check at night and in the morning, all of this could be solved. Procrastination is a huge part of College life, but it can be fixed with little effort. If I had a bold "PAPER DUE IN THREE DAYS YOU ASSHOLE" glaring at me when I woke up, I would probably be much more inclined to do it. Instead it goes something more like, I think I have a paper in the next few days. Better check the syllabus, Oh yup, that's the one - it's due tomorrow. Then I head to 7-11 for sixteen Red Bulls, four Five Hour Energies and some Taquitos and Gatorade - lining up a very healthy evening.

So go out to Target, pick up a five dollar planner and write down everything that is due, every appointment you have, etc. Also pick up a big calendar (you can usually find them for free at random campus events and such). Having it written in two places makes sure that you will actually see it. Put the calendar up where you can easily see it and write down the most important stuff since you have less room there. Also as a side tip - write down when you want to go to sleep. You wouldn't believe how helpful it is to see that written down telling you to not be an idiot and go to bed on time. It isn't very difficult and you will thank me later when you almost forgot something and your planner fixes it. So just write down your life - you won't regret it.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Buy an iPhone... It Just Makes Sense

On the road, it's raining, these mapquest directions seem to be taking you farther from anywhere near where you want to be. You whip out your phone, you remember them mentioning a GPS application at Best Buy where you purchased the phone. Download the GPS app. and boot her up - "smart phone with internet connection required" the screen mockingly reads. What?!? You mean my classicly free flip phone can't run this application? How the hell am I ever going to get home?! As much as it seems to be a horrible story, it only gets worse, he hasn't asked the much more pressing question (seeing as it is a Saturday night). How am I going to update my fantasy roster?? Well you are out of luck there Roger, your phone doesn't support the fantasy football application either... Lost and doomed to lose the big game tomorrow - you should have bought that iPhone man.

Yeah this story sounds depressing for some, but there are some who don't really worry with fantasy football. On a more serious note, in this day and age there are people who still carry flip phones. I really feel sorry for them, because I don't think I could function on a daily basis without a smart phone - it is really a crutch for my life. Rather than hear my ramble about how happy my iPhone makes me, I figured I would review the most important applications that simply make my life hundreds of times easier.

Maps - I guess you all can probably realize - I am good at getting lost. I never print out directions and if I do, I always forget to bring them. I had a GPS for a while, but I always forgot to update it and after two years of that it became pretty pointless - It probably actually got me more lost. The Maps application on the iPhone has saved me probably close to one hundred percent of the time in which I was required to journey somewhere I had no previous knowledge of. It is always updating, it is based on google maps (you can always trust google) and it is easy to use and is always working.

Flash Light - How many times are you looking for something in your car or outside on the ground and you don't have a flash light (because you are like me and are never prepared)? What if your phone could turn the camera flash into a flash light and save your life? Well now it can. And this isn't the only simple application like this, there are others like red laser for example that can find the cheapest price for a UPC in your area.

Youtube/Internet - You can just look up any video, any question, anything and have the answer instantly. No phoning a friend, no finding the library - just google it.

A lot of people may say "iPhones are expensive, the data plans are expensive!" Okay, I see the point - they are expensive. I am partial to the iPhone, but there are plenty of other smart phone options that are much more reasonably priced. Sprint offers many phones that can cost 100$ or less and a data plan that is 69.99$ a month. That is basically what people paid for regular basic plans less than two years ago. That may seem expensive... but when it really comes down to it, you are paying for a GPS, a mini netbook, a gameboy, an electric day planner an alarm clock and more - it pays for itself in convenience. So next time you have your flip phone and you need to buy movie tickets online, find your way back home or google how to kill Freddy Kruger - just remember there are plenty of reasonable smart phones available, so before Freddy kills you in your sleep, just get one - it just makes sense.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Credit Card Debth

Credit Card Debth
I put on my 200$ Diesel shirt, 300$ True Religion Jeans, 175$ bright green Nike shoes, and my 65$ matching DC hat. Don’t judge me, I’m going out – it is all necessary. I splash on my Lacoste Cologne, grab a few dubs (twenty dollar bills) and make sure I have my credit cards – noice, time to go pick up some chicks at the “Thirsty Turtle.” We waltz in, of course we look the freshest, we find a group of girls – they totally dig us. “Line up the Jager bombs” I say, “ten of them.” “Eighty five dollars,” he responds. Shit… That’s when my conscience attempts to stop me, “Bro tell him that is too much, no way.” I can’t do that, I would look like an idiot, so instead of listening to my conscience, I slide into my back pocket and pull out the thing that never runs out of money, the credit card – Shizzam! “Open a tab he says?”

The funniest thing about this scenario is that we all know it is wrong, yet we all continue to repeat this type of incident, over and over and over and over and….over. Our generation has little to no respect for the idea of cost or money, we are spenders. The clothing that we glorify costs hundreds of dollars per PIECE of clothing, for what we spend on a pair of jeans and shirt we could buy an expensive suit from Macys – something just isn’t right. Yes I admit I am guilty of this too, I spend too much as well, we all do. We spend money on so many things, food, alcohol, clothes, video games, cars, car parts, car speakers, the list goes on. Everything is incredibly expensive and since no one is spending money except for our age demographic – we are targeted, and we are losing. We are all guilty of this one as well – Log into the online banking, head to checking balance, Holy Hell WTF OMG, where did my money go? I spent that much? When? Oh… on that and that and that one thing and that dinner and at the bar and this and that. Yeah, you guys all know what I am talking about – the dreaded “check the balance the night after the bar” kind of morning.

About a year ago I decided to look into a documentary about credit cards – “Maxed Out” ( The movie takes you on a journey through the battered and ruined lives of those losing the battle against credit card debt. You would not believe how many people are completely overwhelmed with debt, enough to literally destroy their families and ruin their lives. They lose their homes, their cars, go into depression and more – it is one of the saddest things I have ever seen. Then you end up learning about college students that were completely unaware of the debt they were getting themselves into – a few of them ending up committing suicide. As bad as I feel for these kids, everyone is poor in college – there is no need to open a bunch of credit cards. Seriously… we see the debt in our economy today and where our parents are, and we are still dipping into those habits? If you google “average college debt” the numbers are somewhere between twenty and thirty thousand dollars as we exit our college years. There is really no need to accrue more debt through stupid spending habits with our terrible plastic counterparts.

So I propose a simple fix, something to help in all of this ridiculous spending. Leave the cards at home, take out cash and take note of the balance in your account when doing so, create a spending habit or limit. If you go to the bar, bring what you WANT to spend, not what you are willing to spend – no credit card, no “OMG morning.” If you go shopping, bring what you WANT to spend as well, then when you find that 200$ shirt that you “have to have” you just can’t buy it… sucks, but you will thank me later. Best case scenario, create a spending plan, plan out groceries, fun, clothes, etc – you wouldn’t believe how much money you can save with a simple plan of action. Credit cards can’t put you into “debth” if you just don’t use them…