Words by Kiana Duncan

With the harsh winter months coming to Kent State, it’s time we took a Bear Grylls-style approach to defeating the cold and the diseased. For that matter, we’re going to destroy any notion you had of being underprepared for any situation. Hungry? We’ve got a granola bar. Thirsty? Pull out that handy dandy water bottle. Tiffany spilled something on her shirt? Screw you, Tiffany. Find your own Tide to Go pen.

  1. Hand sanitizer: This is a must-have for the petri dish that is college. Worse than a bunch of toddlers, we will sneeze on anything that moves and show little regard for the healthy by showing up to class with dripping noses and scratchy throats. We’re The Walking Dead. Literally. So squeeze that sucker and drown yourself in alcohol-based cleaning fluid.
  2. Chapstick: This is a lifesaver. You may be saying “No, I don’t need that,” but when the winter months come to suck your soul out through your mouth, you will be wishing you had that tube of Carmex your mom stuck in your bookbag. No one likes crusty lips.
  3. Charger: ‘Tis the law of the universe that states if you ever need to use your laptop or phone for anything, it must be dying with no charger in sight. Don’t be the guy who cuts someone in line for printing because your laptop died. Don’t be me. Be a good person and bring your chargers so you can’t make an excuse for not being able to get that presentation done.
  4. Cash: Cash is king. Do I believe that? No. But, it’s something old people say a lot when they’re scared of new technology. The lesson you can take away from this is the same as the last. Something will always fail you if you need it desperately in that moment: Debit cards, ex-boyfriends and ever-loving parental support… what? My point is when you forget your credit card, remember that crumpled five sitting in your bookbag pocket and remember to not hate yourself.
  5. Snack: I cannot even stress how important this one is. Have you ever been in a class where you haven’t eaten yet that day? Because I have and it’s on that seventh layer of hell. So for God’s sake, don’t let your stomach eat itself. I even have my own snack collection growing in my backpack. And I am not ashamed. One. bit.
  6. Mints: As someone who guzzles coffee like a machine, my breath is sometimes…not the best. And by not the best, I mean rancid pumpkin carcasses. So for the sake of your peers, friends and professors, pack a tin of Altoids.
  7. Gloves: During the winter, your hands will turn purple and gray and dry and cracked. This will make you sad and will make other people not want to touch you. It will also make your hands hurt, so throw some gloves in. That text may have to hold off, but you know what never does? Hypothermia.

So, count your lucky stars on whatever remaining fingers you have that someone is here to tell you these things before you mess up on your own.