The Procrastinator’s Guide to the Galaxy: Free Rice

My dear Hoyas, we hope your Easter Break has been all that you dreamed it would be but let’s face it, we’re only running from the debacle that will begin when we resume our coursework next week.

People are always throwing the word “Procrastinator” around with some sort of negative connotation. Why should we be ashamed of our lifestyle, especially when the time spent delaying work could be used for something more productive, like saving the world? Alas, we provide you with a meaningful distraction that will make you feel honored to join the ranks of the Procrastinators. If you have that paper looming over your head, log on to FreeRice.com and start making that difference in the world! The site is filled with many questions of different subjects, from literature, humanities, and language learning to chemistry, human anatomy, and math. For every question you answer correctly, the UN World Food Programme donates 10 grains of rice to areas around the world dealing with struggles of chronic hunger.

So why start on that lab report when you could be answering questions to alleviate world hunger? Not to mention, many of the questions are very easy and will restore your self-esteem to its original state before you began college.

Well, there you have it: avoiding productivity with productivity. However, if you’re looking for something completely and utterly unproductive and a total waste of time, check this out.

Enjoy the rest of your break and good luck!

Concerts and Events Galore!

Cherry tree concerts

Fellow Hoyas, if you’re feeling like me and you need a break after two whole weeks of school (what a trek!), don’t fret! Easter Break is right around the corner! Whether you’re staying on campus, enjoying home cooked meals back at your parents’ , or visiting some exotic get away place, don’t forget to take the time to relax and mentally prepare for the last stretch till’ finals! In the mean time, here are some concerts you might want to check out if you’re avoiding midterms and exploring DC:

National Cherry Blossom Festival 2013 @ National Building Museum– Saturday, March 23rd

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is a DC tradition, so don’t miss out on this opportunity!

101 Years of Broadway @ The Music Center at Strathmore- Sunday, March 24th  @ 7pm

This features a compilation of the best moment of Broadway in the last century. So, whether you’re a fan of Broadway or not, you’ll definitely want to reserve your seat.

Maroon 5 with Neon Trees and Owl City @ Verizon Center- Wednesday April 3rd @ 7pm

Guys, I don’t even need to explain why you need to get your tickets for this. Just do yourselves a favor and buy a ticket.

Alicia Keys @ Verizon Center- Sunday, April 14th @ 7pm

I think I might explode from happiness. Get your tickets before I buy all of them. This girl is on fire.

Have a great Easter Break next week and don’t forget to check out these concerts!

Concerts on Concerts on Concerts

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Happy midterm season! As you dive into the papers and exams, don’t forget to plan a breather by exploring the wonderful area we live in. Concerts, specifically, are a great way to blow off steam! Here are some upcoming performers you might be interested in checking before you head out for spring break.

National Symphony Orchestra @Concert Hall, Kennedy Center – February 21st, 22nd, February 23rd Going to see an orchestra can be very relaxing and exciting for classical-music-enthusiasts and those new to the genre. You should also try to take opportunities to head over to the Kennedy Center whenever you can! Check here for timings and tickets.

Georgetown Cabaret @Fur Night Club – February 21st This 37th annual rock show is one you don’t want to miss! Get your tickets here!

Imagine Dragons @ The Fillmore Silver Spring – February 22nd A personal favorite of mine. Get your tickets  now! You know everyone will be heading there this Friday!

Lupe Fiasco @ The Filmore Silver Spring – February 27th Need I say more? It’s Lupe, nuff’ said. Get your tickets here 

Aaron Carter @ Jammin’ Java – March 10th If you get back early enough on Sunday from spring break, you should take a trip down this memory lane! Tickets are available here.

With that said, good luck on your midterms and don’t miss out on these opportunities!

Photo: TicketMaster, TheLupendBlog, JamminJava, Georgetown Cabaret Facebook

 

WikiWhat? Oxytocin? LOVE IS A LIE?

WikiWhatPicture this: a frantic biology student searches through Wikipedia for better explanations of the concepts sure to be on Wednesday’s midterm. Of course, Wikipedia is already a questionable method of studying … both for its spotty information and because we all know that one thing leads to another and we somehow end up checking celebrities’ pages for their birthdays and discographies. This time around, I came across something that could debunk love as we know it: oxytocin.

Sure, you might be claiming that love is in the air this Valentine’s Day. I am, however, quite excited to burst your bubble of happiness in telling you that it’s not your heart telling you that you’re in love — it’s your brain. Oxytocin is a hormone secreted from the pituitary gland that serves various purposes in your body. In several scenarios, oxytocin is found at high levels during sexual activity, breastfeeding, and right before birth in the mother’s body. What’s more interesting is that oxytocin induces feelings of security and calmness around your significant other. It reduces fear, and there also exists a positive correlation between oxytocin levels and measuring romantic attachment. A study even showed that when couples are separated, oxytocin comes to the rescue by alleviating sentiments of anxiety. It even allegedly keeps men faithful!

Yes, yes, I know that just because there exists a strong correlation between romance and oxytocin, that does not imply that oxytocin causes romance, when it could very much be the opposite. However, given that Valentine’s Day is around the corner, I will take any opportunity I can to rain on that parade.

So, the next time your special person tells you they have “love” for you in their heart, know this: That ain’t love — that’s oxytocin!

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

Top Five ‘Secret’ Study Places

studying

We’re reaching that time of the semester where that abominable wave of midterms begins. While we can all agree that this can be a very dreadful time for us Hoyas, we can at least agree that there are a few factors we can use to get us through these dark times: sleep (or not), Red Bull, sticky notes and a reliable study place. No, I’m not talking about Lau or Regents: I’m talking about “super-secret” study places where you can actually find seats.

New South Piano Rooms Head over to the couple of piano rooms provided in New South toward the Riverside Lounge. Four walls, a piano and a table will surround you. Internet connection is scarce. However, if Internet is not required for your studying, then it’s perfect. (Yeah, that’s right, Facebookers: can’t avoid your work now!) I suggest only going there in the late hours of 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. because these rooms are highly demanded by people who actually need the pianos!

Leo’s Though not exactly a secret, try heading over to Leo’s from around 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. You’ll find that, while there aren’t many food options, there aren’t many people around, and it’s a great place to study and take snack breaks. Do take caution in trying to study during rush hours (i.e. dinner time and peak lunch time), for you will get absolutely nothing done and people will stare at you for being a loner at the dining hall. But have confidence! No shame in eating alone.

ICC At almost any time of the day, ICC has many open classrooms. Walk around the halls for a bit and find an empty classroom. To avoid getting kicked out or having to leave because of a class, try going in the evening. If you can secure a class, you have a whole room to yourself! Not to mention, you have a chalkboard (with chalk) to write out vocabulary or equations.

Law School Library Plan to take a shuttle to the GU Law Center library. It’s about a 15-minute ride, but it’s worth it! It might be best to plan a whole day or afternoon around this so that you can make the most of your trip. What are the benefits? Well, first off, you’ll meet a refreshing environment away from Main Campus, and you’ll get the chance to study in a far more lavish and prettier library than Lau! Also, the ride through D.C. is quite scenic.

Your Dorm Haha, just kidding. But actually, your dorm can be a great place to study if you use it correctly. A lot of us spend most of our days out of our dorms, and it can sometimes be nice to just do your work in your own space. Plan a day where your roommate might be busy, get in your PJs and just get some work done. Of course, if you do this too often, you’ll get marginal returns of productivity, so use this study setting sparingly.

Well, that’s about it. If you have any cooler secret study places, let us know! Or maybe just keep it your little secret. Good luck studying, Hoyas!

A CA-YES!

ctm preview

Who’s ready for a Riff-Off, Georgetown style? Okay, though perhaps not as aggressive as Pitch Perfect a capella concerts, the 40th annual Cherry Tree Massacre is about to take over the weekends in February and showcase what “a capella” really means here at Georgetown! Come out and enjoy music that will range from your favorite oldies to your favorite Billboard hits and have fun with your friends!

The campus is covered with many a capella groups, all with different varieties and tastes in music. Here’s your chance to experience, compare and enjoy the musical styles of all the different groups and to simply enjoy a long-standing tradition here at Georgetown. There will be performances by our very own Capitol G’s, Chamber Singers, Gracenotes, Phantoms, Saxatones, Superfood and the event’s host, the Georgetown Chimes.  Fortunately for those who are either swamped with work or can’t seem to find the time (which is pretty much the whole student body), the Cherry Tree Massacre will be held in Gaston Hall at 7:30 pm on four separate occasions: February 1st, 2nd, 8th and 23rd. Make sure you get yourself and a couple of friends to one of these events! Buy a ticket in Red Square anytime Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., or you can reserve a ticket online here. Tickets are on sale for $10 at Red Square, and $12 online and at the door.

We all know that there exists certain requirements one must complete to essentially be a true Hoya. Well, I’m telling you now, going to the Cherry Tree Massacre is one of them, so get a ticket before you are shunned as an outsider on campus for eternity. Okay, that won’t happen, but seriously, don’t miss out on the fun! See you there! Time for some aca-fun!

Photocreds: All The Kings Men

Sunday Night Wrapup: Obama v. Romney, Round 2

As we plunge deeper into exams, papers, projects, and assignments, the world continues to spin. If you find yourself completely unaware of recent happenings, don’t fret! We’ve got you covered with the latest news.

  • The Hilltop tuned into the second Presidential debate, watching both the presidential candidates discuss foreign and domestic policy. This debate proved far more intense than the last one, with verbal fistfights and alongside the moderator’s controversial fact-checking intervention. The general consensus agrees that Obama was far more aggressive and alert this time around, to which he jokingly refers to at the Al Smith Memorial Foundation dinner as being well rested from the “long nap” he had in the first debate.
  • If you missed last week’s Presidential debate, tune in to the last one tomorrow at 9 pm! The two candidates will be discussing foreign policy; so don’t forget to brush up on the facts prior to the viewing.
  • Hillary Clinton came to campus on Thursday (in case you didn’t notice the lines wrapped around Healy filled with students trying to get a spot in Gaston Hall). Many did not get succeed. Not to worry, if you were wondering what she talked about, you can get the scoop here.
  • Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake finally tied the knot after five years of dating! The couple got married in Italy on Friday. The newly-weds had a relatively private ceremony in the city of Fasano.
  • Clashes ensue after funeral of Wissam al-Hassan in Beirut on Friday. Protesters called for the Prime Minister to resign and police responded with tear gas and warning shots.

SmarTrip: One Less Problem to Worry About

What’s the most inconvenient thing about public transportation? If you’re a resident of Washington, D.C. or a student at Georgetown, one thing comes to mind. There’s nothing like that blissful feeling of rushing to the metro only to find a negative balance on your SmarTrip card after swiping it a thousand times. Wonderful.

But there’s some good news! Since a test run with over 1,300 riders, the Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) has released a new plan where riders can now connect their credit or debit card information to SmarTrip cards with the option to refill the balance automatically! One less thing I have to worry about! The goal behind the plan is to encourage the use of the plastic, reusable cards rather than the paper fare tickets.

Even better, the original plan arranged for having a minimum of twenty dollars on the card, but now riders can set their own minimum balance. If that’s not making you jump with joy, then you should know that the original plan would originally take a couple of business days to transfer the money, but now it’s up and ready from the moment you sign up. All in all, it’s safe to say that your metro experience might be slightly less painful because of the newly implemented policies. Happy riding!

Now if they could just get automatic toilet paper replacement in bathrooms…

Traditions Day: All That is Georgetown

Is there a better way to begin Homecoming celebrations than rejoicing in our many traditions? Yes, that was a rhetorical question. This Friday (today!) marks Traditions Day! In celebrating school spirit, Traditions Day reinforces the specific traditions of Georgetown that essentially make us “bleed Hoya blue.”

As you prepare for the crowds and the cheering and the inevitable fun that follows Homecoming weekend, plan to include today in your festivities! If you’re a freshman, you’ll especially want to take part in the traditions that will soon become apart of your life and community here at the Hilltop!

So what exactly is going on?

GUGS will be flipping burgers alongside local restaurants throughout Copley lawn and Red Square around noon. Don’t forget about Wingo’s Wing Eating Contest! Sounds like happiness on a silver platter to me. While ensuring the satisfaction of your stomach, don’t forget to stop by Healy Circle and poke fun at community members agonizing in the dunk tank, featuring our own Blog Editor Michelle Cassidy, GUSA President Clara Gustafson and other seniors.

From a grueling Tug of War match and Powderpuff football to listening to your favorite a cappella groups and watching in anticipation as the Traditions Day Cup is awarded to one of our classes; Friday will be a day of fun, spirit, and exposure to all that is Georgetown!

So what do I take from this?

Besides the entertainment, food, and games, Traditions Day provokes thought about who you are and what you’ll become as you join (if you’re new) or progress throughout the Georgetown community. Think about all these little quirks, all these little building blocks that define Georgetown. Do they define you? Are they components your perception of Georgetown? Will you smile in reminiscence twenty years from now as a distinguished alumnus when thinking about these specific traditions? I guess the only way to find out is to simply revel in it and enjoy the ride! Hoya Saxa!

Photocreds: http://homecoming.georgetown.edu/

Sunday Night Wrapup: Endeavor Soars, Emmys Tonight!

Be Well Week is in full drive here on the hilltop! From meditation to yoga and snatching free turkey burgers on Copley lawn, it’s safe to say that the first week has been a success! Whether you spent your attention on be(ing) well this week or keeping up with the increasing pace of coursework, here is the Sunday Night Wrapup to keep you up to date:

  • Endeavor officially concluded NASA’s thirty-year shuttle program by its flight as is toured over the Golden Gate Bridge and across the country. #spottheshuttle made it’s away around social media and over 5,000 people eagerly awaited it’s final descent in Los Angeles.
  • The Emmys are tonight, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel! Turn on your televisions or your live stream on computers around 5 pm to tune in. If you still don’t know who’s in the running, check out the complete list of nominations. Here’s to hoping your favorite shows win!
  • Protests ensue after the release of an anti-Islam film. The spokesman of the Prime Minister of Pakistan condemned the $100,000 bounty placed on the filmmaker. Due to current instability, US citizens are advised not to travel to Pakistan.
  •  With much anticipation “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” finally hit theaters this week! Though on limited release, overall positive reviews respond to Emma Watson’s American accent and Logan Lerman’s “socially inept” Charlie.

Photo: insidetv.ew.com