Today: Apr 21, 2024

Winter Survival 101: for the spring semester

 SIMONE VIRZICopy Editor

Unless you like to snowboard, ski or you are a polar bear, chances are you dread the “s” word: snow. I personally would prefer walking around in sunglasses, a bathing suit and flip flops every day, but unfortunately that isn’t realistic in this nutty “Nutmeg State.” However, instead of complaining about it, sometimes you just have to make the most of winter.

When You Can’t Beat it, Join it

You may see snow outside and groan because you have to walk or drive in it, and it confirms the fact that summer is long gone. But let’s be honest, sitting around complaining won’t make the snow melt any faster; all you’re doing is getting on everyone’s nerves. So put on a coat, scarf, and gloves, and get outside and build a snowman.

If you think you’re too old or too cool to build Mr. and Mrs. Snowman, or simply not skilled enough to build one, it’s OK. Why not have a snowball fight instead? After all, no one is too old to throw packed balls of snow at a friend or relative. If you’re still really young at heart, go sledding! If you’re looking for a good hill, I suggest the hill by the parking lot on the dorm side of campus by Chase Hall (next to or behind Brownell Hall). My freshman year we sat on (empty) garbage bags. It may not sound that exciting, but it is. My friend really wanted to go sledding, and she basically dragged me outside. Long story short, she went down the hill once; I couldn’t get enough of it.

Accessorize

When it’s cold outside, you would probably rather stay warm in bed than go outside and drive or walk to class. But you have to. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t at least have some fun with your clothes and make the most of the lousy weather. Try wearing a cute or funny hat (I’m not including baseball caps), or try wearing a fashionable but warm scarf and gloves. I saw a few guys walking around in shorts a couple of semi-warmer days we had last week, but it’s not summer yet. Cover those legs up! Even if you’re just going to the gym and back, wear a coat.

One strong recommendation I have is to avoid wearing new boots or sneakers you really love (this goes for both guys and girls). Dirty snow or mud is never a good thing. I know the whole purpose of shoes is to keep your feet covered, warm and dry, but they’re also part of fashion. So when new white sneakers are now brown, most of us are likely to get upset. Last week my black boots had dry mud on them—needless to say, I was not a happy girl. So save your favorite shoes for when the ground is safe, and have go-to boots or sneakers so you won’t care if they get dirty.

Avoid Amateur Errors

Last spring on the first day back, my roommate and I were walking down the stairs to go back to Brownell Hall. I’m not really sure why, but I thought it would be fun to see if my tongue would stick to the stair railing— the railing was metal, and it was cold out. I did not hold it for more than two or three seconds, but my tongue was stuck. I had to rip my tongue off, which was incredibly painful. Although my tongue was not gushing blood, there was blood. My suggestion? Don’t even try because even if it’s for 10 seconds, you may experience a situation similar to “A Christmas Story.”

If you’re going to have a snow fight at school, be careful. Last week a member of Southern News was walking out of class with his coworkers and thought it would be funny to throw snowballs at one person. With the exception of his target, we all walked in the student center, and the editor thought he would go out the door by Dunkin’ to throw more snowballs at the person. However, he fell on his face in the student center, knocking over a yellow caution sign. Maybe that’s why mom always said not to run inside.

Winter-Wonderful

When I was younger, my sister Jocelyn and I would play outside in the snow until we were frozen, and my mom would make us hot chocolate so we could warm up (marshmallows included). Sometimes my mom would make it extra-special and use colored mini-marshmallows instead of the standard white ones. Even as an adult, there’s something comforting about a good cup of hot chocolate. Dunkin’ also makes a crazy-good hot chocolate, and they have a mint hot chocolate too. I’ve also tried their Dunkaccino, which is coffee and hot chocolate. The combination initially sounds a little strange, but it’s incredible. The cold weather is a perfect excuse to stop and pick up one of these drinks, but I don’t suggest making it a daily habit; they have hundreds of calories, and you don’t want to end up gaining weight from a drink. So treat yourself once in a while, but be careful—the drinks can be addicting.

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