The Top 7 Places You Wish You Were This Summer

THE TOP 7 PLACES

August is fast-approaching and we’re starting to wonder what we’ve done with our summers. We at 4E believe that summer vacations were built for travel, so here are the top 7 places we know that you wish you were for the summer.

7. Sydney, Australia

SYDNEY

Australia, the land Down Under, the home of the most poisonous species per capita in the world and a great place to spend the remainder of a summer – even if it’s technically winter there right now. There’s the beautiful Opera House, the miles of beaches AND the ultimate destination for marine bio fans – the Great Barrier Reef. If you’ve ever considered trying snorkeleing or scuba diving or are a seasoned expert looking to check out a tropical fishy paradise, this reef is the biggest on the planet. If you can get past the box jellyfish, the great white sharks and the abundance of tiny things that can kill you, there’s nowhere quite like Aussie-land.

 

6. Jackson Hole, WY

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Middle America may not be the first place you think of to spend a relaxing summer, but the least populated state in the US has some of the best places to take in the beauty of nature. Take, Jackson Hole for example. Complete with a skyline dominated by the Grand Teton mountain range (named by French trappers who hadn’t seen women in years, hence the name that translates to “big boobs”) and landscapes full of lakes and the gorgeous Snake River and LOTS of elk, moose and buffalo. Yellowstone National Park is nearby too, so you can check out the Old Faithful geyser and the boiling mudpots. Be sure to hit up the Chuckwagon in Moose Junction for

 

5. Prague, Czech Republic

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Prague is one of the most underrated cities in Europe. Gorgeous architecture and boulevards, museums, and beautiful scenery – the Czechs got it all. It’s also a great jumping off point to visit the rest of Central and Eastern Europe and has one of the most fascinating histories of any city in the world. They threw off the yoke of the Soviet Union in a BIG way during the Prague Spring and they have settled MULTIPLE historical disputes  by throwing people out of windows. These so called “Defenestrations of Prague” were pretty violent, but any excuse to use the word defenestration is cool in my book.

 

4. San Diego, CA

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I’m biased because this is my hometown, where I’m spending my summer and I need friends. So come visit me. There are more beaches than you can possibly imagine, perfect weather (74 degrees and sunny) and Legoland, SeaWorld and World Famous San Diego Zoo! If Anchorman got one thing right, it was my city’s obsession with giant pandas. San Diego is a lot like Los Angeles, minus the traffic, smog, and Hollywood pretentiousness. So basically it’s perfect (not that I’m biased or anything).

 

3. The Island of Fiji

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White sand beaches, cute guys and gals in swimsuits, fruity drinks with cheesy paper umbrellas in them and an ocean that is as warm as some people’s jacuzzis. The island of Fiji is about as close to paradise as you can get and nothing sounds quite as relaxing as lying on the sand, reading a book and casually powering through pina coladas and margaritas. It’s the opposite of school year stress.

2/1. Washington DC/Home

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If you are reading this from wherever you call home, chances are you wish you were back in Washington DC. Readjusting to life under the control of your parents is annoying and your minimum wage job is a drag so you probably find yourself dreaming of picnics on the National Mall and dartys with your friends on the weekends. However, if you are one of the lucky ones hanging out in DC this summer, you probably are missing the comforts of home. A mom to do your laundry and feed you is sounding pretty good right about now, and the humidity and overabundance of rain has you dreaming of your hometown. Either way, the grass is greener on the other side.

My Daguerrotype Boyfriend

procrastinators guide

While you may be looking for summer love in the typical places, summer jobs, the beach or local bars may come to mind, I’m turning to the place I love most to find my dream husband – history. “History?” You say, “How can you turn to history for romance?” Well tumblr blog My Daguerrotype Boyfriend is a good place to start.

My Daguerrotype Boyfriend features a unique collection of early daguerrotype and tinotype photographs with a common theme – really really ridiculously good looking subjects. The site describes itself as “where early photography meets extreme hotness” and I’m certainly not gonna argue. Some of the entries are familiar faces like Fredrick Douglass, Harry Houdini or F. Scott Fitzgerald but most are regular Joes whose names are all but lost to history. It sounds like the beginning of a cheesy romance novel. If that book doesn’t exist, I call dibs on writing it. After browsing their archives I have concluded that there are a lot of really sweet mustaches, pimped out military uniforms and strong jawlines that prove that some beauty really is timeless.

If these guys were around today, I know for sure that they would do well at Rhino on Friday nights.

The Fluffington Post

procrastinators guide

So you’re a news junkie, constantly checking for the next breaking story instead of doing, y’know, work stuff.

All that doom-and-gloom news can start to weigh a little heavy on your mind, so it’s good to throw in some light-hearted fare, and there’s no site quite as perfect for that as The Fluffington Post. Billing itself as “The #1 news source for breaking news and investigative journalism FLUFFY ANIMALS,” the Post is the ultimate source of cute animal pictures and hard-hitting news stories like “Puppy is nervous about first day of day care” and “Cat and Dog kiss on a dare.”

If you have one animal in particular that fills your heart with joy, they have tabs to sort out Puppies, Kitties, Bunnies, Birdies, Rodentia, Menagerie and, my personal favorite, Petflix! You’re even able to submit your own pictures and stories to spread some cute to the entire world.

So take a break from Huffington, and turn instead to Fluffington. You’ll thank me later.

The Five People You’ll Meet on the DC Metro this Summer

DC MetroAs Hoyas, we try to break the bubble as much possible, which means that we’ll likely take a trip on the metro at some point. You’ll probably meet an interesting array of people so here’s a catalog of these people to help you out.

1. The Business Professional

These “yopros” may be annoying, but for many Georgetown students this may be your future. They’re always impeccably dressed with their suits and briefcases and as you travel further into the political heart of DC, you’ll notice that they all have a government-issued security badge. The fresher the hire, the more prominently displayed the badge. They’ll spend most of the ride glued to their smartphone in an attempt to appear productive and important. They’re mostly rush-hour Metro patrons and carry that no-nonsense attitude with them all the time. If you block them on the escalator prepare to be body-slammed.

2. The Tourist

While this breed of Metro-rider is only seen at certain times of the day, the mighty Tourist is a constant presence. Their guide books will tell them to stay away from the Green & Yellow lines (which is stupid) and they will most likely be found on the Blue & Orange lines loudly counting down the stops until the Smithsonian station where they will all depart. Chances are that they will be wearing matching running shoes, fanny packs and tacky Washington D.C. t-shirts and will have a particularly noticeable regional accent. These are the people who stand on the left side of the escalator and take up two seats for one person during rush hour. They just don’t get it.

3. The Family

This type is similar to the Tourist, but the Family unit is ten times worse because they come with loud unruly children. Even if they aren’t tourists, kids have a way of almost getting shut in doors and causing general mayhem. The worst is when parents try to bring strollers into the crowded car and are surprised – mad even – when it doesn’t really fit. They shout, they move around a lot, they miss their stops a lot – they are the embodiment of a Metro nightmare.

4. The Probably Homeless Person

This guy may be homeless, or he may just be making a unique personal lifestyle choice, but he certainly does smells very strange. This person probably has a fairly large collection of empty seats around them – this is partly due to the smell, and partly due to the fact that he may be talking to himself. Even though he may be a perfectly nice person, it’s probably best to give him some space.

5. You

You’re either commuting to your internship or exploring more of the city, but you know enough of the unspoken Metro rules to get by. You have learned to not stand on the left side of the escalators, to not sit in the handicapped seats and, even though you probably don’t know exactly where you’re going, you definitely learned not to discuss that fact too loudly. You’re really just trying to take advantage of everything DC has to offer, and the Metro is the easiest way to do that.

Photo: Anamsong

“New Slaves” and Kanye Controversy

kanye

If there are three things that Kanye West does best, they are the following:

1. Being provocative
2. Being dramatic
3. Being unintentionally hilarious

After making the entire musically-inclined corner of the internet explode by cryptically tweeting “June 18th,” which has since become the presumed release date of his new solo album, Kanye has been playing with us like a killer whale plays with a seal. (Deputy editor’s note: If you haven’t seen a killer whale playing with a seal, please watch this video. It is very graphic and disturbing, and it is very much like this moment where Kanye is the whale and Taylor Swift is the seal. Also, speaking of killer whales and Kanye West, this just speaks for itself.)

On the 17th, Kanye tweeted that his newest single would be premiering in a unique fashion – with installation art video performances at scheduled locations across the globe.

Why he always tweets in all caps is also a mystery
Why he always tweets in all caps is also a mystery

The song that premiered on the sides of buildings all over the world is the supposed first single off the new solo album – possibly titled “Yeezus” – and is called “New Slaves.”

Kanye has never been one to shy away from controversial statements about race in America or about life in general and this new track is certainly no exception. Juxtaposing the standards of life on the streets and life among the stars, “New Slaves” certainly follows West’s knack for stirring up polemic audience responses.

“New Slaves” is less personal than some of his other tracks have been, considering the fact that all of 2010’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (one of my favorite albums ever) is essentially a musical therapy session over the loss of his mother and the fallout over the Taylor Swift incident but Yeezy’s characteristic self-awareness is still evident. He knows that he is firmly entrenched in the upper echelon he raps about, but he still sees the effects of racism even at the top.

But it’s Kanye, so it’s bursting with attitude and loud-mouthed swagger. I’m already obsessed with it. Kanye has mastered the art of using overwhelming narcissism and materialism to cope with self-loathing and it shows on this track.

I throw these Maybach keys / I wear my heart on my sleeve
I know that we the new slaves / I see the blood on the leaves

He performed the song again this past Saturday as the musical guest on Saturday Night Live along with another new song called “Black Skin Head.” There’s clearly a heavy racial element going on with his new tracks, which may make some fans uncomfortable if the theme continues on the rest of the new album, but I doubt Kanye really cares how you feel.
 

If you’re ever feeling down, y’all should really consider trying Kanye’s coping method. It’s hard to feel bad about yourself when you walk around acting like the sun shines for no one but you. In the meantime though, keep your eyes out for the latest music and antics from the ever-controversial Kanye.

Pack It Up, Pack It In

Pack it up pack it in

With finals coming to a close, only two real struggles of the school year remain: figuring out when all your friends are leaving so you can remember to say goodbye and packing up your entire life and moving out.

If you’ve lived in the same place since August, you probably don’t even realize just how much stuff you have in such a small space. So here are some tips for getting the most into your limited packing space

NOTE: Most of my packing experience comes from packing suitcases for flying cross-country – but I’ve done it A LOT. If your parent is driving down to pick you up, I’m pretty sure you just stuff as much as you can fit into the car until you run out of stuff, which is a lot less complicated than making sure none of your suitcases weigh over 50lbs.

The Basics

  • Actually fold your clothes. Crumpling them up and shoving them into random corners is only to be used in extremely dire circumstances. 
  • When it comes to T-shirts, fold them lengthwise and roll them from top to bottom and pack those last in the little crevices left from other things.
  • Use the pockets. Your suitcase extra has pockets for a reason. Stuff them with whatever fits!
  • Throw away what you don’t need.

Safety in Layers Need to pack mugs or other more fragile things? First, fold your blankets and sweaters and other fluffy-like things, and put the breakable stuff between the layers. That way they don’t take up extra space and your stuff is more protected. The downside of this is that your boxes and suitcases get deceptively heavy very quickly so be prepared to call in reinforcements when you actually have to move them.

It’s All About the Shoes Put all the extra empty space in your boots, sneakers and other miscellaneous footwear to good use by stuffing them full of your socks and underwear. It may seem silly, but there’s a surprising amount of space you aren’t taking advantage of in there that you might as well use.

Overdressed to Impress…ed  I have developed the habit of flying in my Hunter rainboots. Is it horribly inconvenient at security to have to take them off in a timely manner? Absolutely. Do I look ridiculous when I step off the plane in Southern California? The most ridiculous. But the space I save in my limited checked luggage by wearing the rubber behemoths, as well as multiple layers of fleece jackets and cardigans more than makes up for the hassle and embarrassment. It’s about efficiency, not comfort, people.

A Balanced Approach When you pack up your bedding – mattress pad, comforter, pillows etc. – don’t put them all in the same box. If you do, that one box will be nice, light and easy to carry, but any others will weigh an absolute ton. Distribute these so you have a lot of manageable boxes, instead of a few that are nearly impossible and a few that could be lifted with your pinky.

In the end, as long as you are able to get yourself completely moved out of your room or apartment in time, it doesn’t really matter how it gets done. Just zip those bad boys up and don’t think about it again until you unpack at home and find four articles of your roommate’s clothing stuck between yours.

The Hoya at AwesomeCon DC 2013

the hoya meets

D.C. may not be known to the general public as a particularly “nerdy” community beyond the Josh Lyman-type political junkies who would rather read Roll Call than catch the latest superhero movie. But this Hoya staffer (and self-proclaimed pop culture Queen) had the chance to attend the inaugural Awesome Con D.C. this weekend and boy, are those people wrong. The geeks of D.C. are loud, proud and here to stay. It was a great convention with cool content and guests, but the highlight was without a doubt the fan-made costumes. And, as it turns out, some of these savvy, caped crusaders are also fans of a certain campus newspaper…

Wonder Woman doesn’t need a lasso of truth to test our credibility!
DSCN6960Every Tuesday and Friday, Sonic dashes to grab an issue of The Hoya.

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It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s The Hoya!

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This is the day you will always remember as the day you caught Captain Jack Sparrow reading The Hoya.DSCN6948

We all know Belle loves books, but let’s be real: The Hoya is her favorite thing to read.
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U-S-A! U-S-A!
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Be sure to check out some other pictures of Awesome Con!

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