The scene: A frozen tundra. A snowy wasteland. Cries for help in the distance, abandoned Rosie’s lies on the sidewalk after an unfortunate fall, but not for long. Sucker.
The place? Kent State University. Have you ever had tears frozen to your face? Have you ever fallen so dramatically that your friends can’t let it go? Does your campus remind you of a scene from “Frozen”? Well, then you probably go to school in Northeast Ohio. We may have very few snow days, but that doesn’t mean your winter has to be miserable, save for a few cold walks to Eastway.
- Salt? What salt? The only salt you’re going to find is on Rosie’s fries or around the Honors College. Say what you like; it might be the only salted area on campus, but we’re also paying several Black Market organs’ worth to live there. #sorrynotsorry
- Carry lotion. That’s right, fellas, I’m talking to you too. It’s not “girly,” and no one’s judging you. You know what’s worse than people giving you funny looks? Dry, cracked hands. Eighty-four percent of women would never go on a second date with a guy whose hands looked like they’ve lived in the Sierra Nevada Desert for 25 years. I made that up, but I’m 84 percent sure I wouldn’t.
- Carry chapstick. What’s worse than cracked hands? Cracked lips. Nothing says “Kiss me, you fool!” like flaky, bleeding lips. Ninety-five percent of single people have dry lips to blame. I made that one up too, but seriously guys, chapstick is the bomb.com.
- Get Flash ALERTS! Not even your first-born child will be more beautiful than waking up to a cancellation. They’re like unicorns (Kent State doesn’t mess around), but when they happen, you will go through several nirvana-like emotions before shoving your face back into your pillow. Also, it will prevent you from the rage-inducing experience of walking to class just to realize that it had been canceled four hours ago.
- Along that same line, always check your email before you leave for class. More frequent than school cancellations are professor cancellations. I feel terrible (no, I don’t), but every single time a professor’s kids became ill, I was jumping for joy. Poor little Bobby doesn’t even know that his 24-hour vomiting and diarrhea spree just saved me from a midterm. Maybe kids aren’t that bad.
- Bring a phone charger everywhere. If you’re fortunate enough to have a smartphone, then you’re well aware of the lack of battery life in cold weather. My iPhone 5 from freshman year would go from 80 to 0 percent real quick (much like myself). I mean, who am I kidding? It was never at 100 percent. If weird thoughts keep you up at night, such as “What if I were walking alone on campus at 3 a.m.? What if my phone was dead? What if I fall and break my leg? I would literally freeze to the sidewalk.” *Insert dreams about being attacked by Bigfoot, then throw a charger in your bag.
- Refrain from angry tweeting at Bev. Look, I get it. We’ve all been up at the ass crack of dawn: you know, that gross time when only the chemistry and pre-med students get up? I know it’s cold, and you’re miserable, but just like us, I’m sure Bev wouldn’t have minded a day off either. Take a moment to think and get off Twitter before you do something that may get your grad school application used as a napkin in four years. It’s not actually her decision, so alas, your tweets are in vain.
- Don’t put off your homework because you think we’ll cancel. First of all, if you even have the slightest inclination that we will, you’re wrong, and you just ruined it for everyone. Thanks, Tiffany. As great as snow days are, online classes are extremely common during cancellations. Nothing ruins a good “How I Met Your Mother” marathon quite like realizing your worksheet was due three hours ago.
- Stock up on frozen meals and snacks. You may not want to spend the extra meal plan money now, but when it’s negative 10 degrees, and you live in a residence hall without a dining area, you’ll be thanking your lucky stars that you have a Lunchable to get you through the night.
- Personally, I like to use the entire spring semester’s weather as an excuse to just never go to the gym as a whole. Sometimes it really is too icy to walk to the Rec. But if that’s not your style (who are you?), then maybe turn on a YouTube Pilates video. It may even help you stay a little warmer. Or so I’ve heard, but I wouldn’t know because my thighs burn when I walk up stairs.
- Bring water everywhere. I’m not one of those people, but it really does help you stay a little warmer and makes you less hungry between classes. Plus, you can still get dehydrated in the winter underneath all those layers.
- Invest in some quality winter gear. I know The North Face is pricey, but it is 100 percent worth it. Using rainboots in the snow is a good call. Also, wearing a hat makes a huge difference, and you can still tuck your headphones in and ignore everyone around you. You may laugh at the upperclassmen with their bubble umbrellas, but they know what they’re doing more than you. Trust me. Don’t be the guy in shorts. Or the girl in Sperry’s, like your’s truly.
- Think ahead and pack what you need beforehand. Nothing is worse than having to walk clear back to your room when there’s a blizzard outside. Do I really need a calculator for this math exam? Yes, yes I do actually.
- Catch up on snow lingo and always check the weather. I do the weather for TV2, and sometimes I’m even like “WTH is a snow squall?!,” or a polar vortex or thundersnow? I know it sounds stupid, but Northeast Ohio weather doesn’t mess around. Check the weather before you leave. It might just save you an extra layer if, for some godforsaken reason, it should happen to be above 20 degrees in the next two months.
- Dress in layers. The outside is so, so cold. But for some reason, Bowman Hall is like the devil’s sauna. So, it never hurts to keep a long-sleeve tee on underneath, especially when the cute guy behind you notices you’re sweating buckets and assumes you have problems.
With these tips in mind, you’re ready to brave the winter. Well, you’re not really “ready.” No one is really ready. Anyway… I’m sure you’ll do great, kid.
If there are any topics you want to read about, tweet me at @strawberrykilee!