Archives by Year: 2013

Deck the Halls with Motivation

As you can see, I am really getting into the Christmas spirit! :D What can I say? I’m dreaming of a white (although it has already snowed since October) Christmas.

Anyways, back to topic. How does one obtain motivation? The motivation to get up each morning. The motivation to complete homework. The motivation to exercise. Motivation comes hand and hand with procrastination, something I know much too well. I have been known to do this about homework, especially AP chemistry problem sets of high school days past. But how does one gain motivation and is procrastination necessarily a bad thing? Let’s see what the wise brainies have to say on this….

“Never leave that til tomorrow which you can do today” ~Benjamin Franklin

“Never put off til tomorrow what may be done the day after tomorrow just as well” ~Mark Twain

“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today” ~Abraham Lincoln

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time” ~Marthe Troly-Curtin

“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him” ~Charles Dickens

“People were always getting ready for tomorrow. I didn’t believe in that. Tomorrow wasn’t getting ready for them. It didn’t even know they were there” ~Cormac McCarthy

Hmmmmm quite conflicted. On one hand, do it now! Have it be done and move on to other things, better things. By having completed your work, you won’t feel guilty about engaging in other exciting activities. On the other hand, life is too short to always be running around doing things you don’t really want to do. Why not pace yourself and enjoy the time you have?

I offer up a story. To lose that freshman fifteen (darn you delicious Colby food), I have been trying to exercise more. However, at college that involves walking across campus in the cold while nearly dying slipping on ice. Nu-uh. Not for me. I would always think, I have too much work to do or it’s snowing or it’s already dark and I don’t want to walk that far. But that wasn’t going to help me. Exercising for just a single hour increases my metabolism (making me healthier), releases endorphins (making me happier), and makes me less tired (making me more productive). In the end, very beneficial. If I just had the motivation to leave my dorm, I could have been feeling better and less stressed. I have never been the sporty exercise person, but when I got home for winter break, I had a lot of time on my hands. So I decided to utilize it and go on the elliptical. Although I have used it before, I have never lasted over a good 10 minutes before gasping for air. But thinking thoughtfully about the pros of exercise (and jamming out to some One Direction), I motivated myself to stay on for 45 minutes followed by core exercises and stretching.

So as you can see, you must motivate yourself to get things done.
“Time waits for no man”



Quotes from:



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Hark the Herald Angels Sing

As I sit on my cozy bed snuggled up in blankets, I would like to reflect on this past semester. Wow. To think that just 4 short months ago, I was arriving on campus for the first time ever. 120 days ago, I did not know anyone at Colby nor did I know how to navigate across campus. I didn’t even know any of the buildings names and was still confused with what was Cotter Union and Pulver Pavilion! 2880 hours ago I had not taken a single college class or learned of the many wonders of multivariable calculus and anthropology. 10,368,000 seconds ago my journey had just begun.

Maybe it’s just the Christmas spirit talking, making me look back on the past like Scrooge, but I feel like I have accomplished a lot. Now, I can travel from Foss to Bixler in under 5 minutes (a proud accomplishment of mine). All of my classes were wonderful. I really enjoyed the topics, learning each day, and the teachers. The amount of workload was, as baby bear would say, just right.

There is an endless list of things I have obtained since being at Colby. I have a portfolio of art projects that I can honestly say I had fun completing and am very proud of. Now I observe the world through an anthropological lens, analyzing why people act the way they do and pondering how that reflects society and the larger culture. Even my writing class has made me look at emails differently, cutting down unnecessary words whenever possible. Outside of classes, I now have friends that will last a lifetime. Its surprising to think of how close my friends and I are for only knowing each other for 4 short months. It’s amazing how people create bonds. I will never forget these quirky, comical, stern, grumpy, hilarious, sad, lovable personalities.

My first semester of college is over and all I have to say is, it was grand.

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Christmas Time on Mayflower Hill

Hark the herald angels sing
Joy to the World!
Jingle bell rock
All the way
Over the river and through the woods
Silent night
Oh what fun it is tonight
Baby all I want for Christmas
Is my two front teeth
But baby it’s cold outside
You better watch out
Santa Claus is coming to town

What time of the year is it when everything is blanketed in white and finals are right around the corner? Oh yes….it is CHRISTMAS TIME! The time of the year when a jolly fat man is glorified for fitting down a chimney and peppermint explodes into every type of food and drink imaginable. It is a wonderful time when Mayflower Hill transforms to a winter wonderland.

What comes with Christmas time? Fairy lights must be hung and decorations spring out of their dusty boxes and light up trees, store windows, and rooms. This is also, of course, sweater season! Christmas sweaters with Santa’s and reindeers are worn with pride to see who can claim the honor of owning the ugliest one. Finally, as the cold settles in, people need an extra layer in order to stay warm. This means consuming wonderfully delicious desserts ;)

I have been the Foss Elf, secretly scurrying around and leaving gifts and Christmas cheer around the dorm. During the time when I was supposed to be studying, I traveled to Waterville on multiple occasions and bought ornaments and candy canes to leave on people’s doors. In addition, my dorm was going to do Secret Santa but we all became too busy. However, I bought and crafted gifts for all of my friends and baked oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, knocking on people’s doors handing them out. I stayed up late, not with my nose in a book, but folding paper cranes and knitting in secret. One night, I stayed up until 7am printing out pictures in order to create collages for my friends. It was difficult to find locations where none of my friends would accidentally walk in on me making their present (almost as difficult as finding a place to study during finals).

I know I’m crazy and worry for studying for finals, but as I made each gift, I just thought of my friends’ beaming faces as they opened their presents and learned of the surprise! I love Christmas time but I wasn’t feeling the spirit at Colby. Finals made everyone stressed, so I wanted to remind everyone to spend this happy time together with friends and to enjoy it. It’s not just about the gifts and consumerism, but about celebrating the bonds made with others. I have made magnificent friends in such a short amount of time and I am very thankful. I wanted to show them how much I love them through these presents that I worked so hard on.

Happy Holidays Everyone! Enjoy this time of year.

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Work Ruminations

I am home and on break right now, although I technically spent my day at work—at my job for an SAT Prep company in Connecticut, where I’ve worked each summer and during the school year (from a distance) since high school. It’s nice to continue to be able to work for a job even though, for most of the year, I am at Colby and in a different state.

SAT Prep is one of those activities that a lot of Colby students are involved in, in one way or another. At Colby, one popular extracurricular on campus is MulePrep; Colby students volunteer to visit Waterville High Schools to teach classes on SAT Reading, Writing, and Math on Sundays in seven week chunks. I have never personally participated in this activity, only because I think I would be overwhelmed by SAT prep if I did so, considering the nature of my job.

What this testifies to, however, is the extent to which activities that one participates in high school are translatable to Colby: We have Model United Nations, Debate Society, Mock Trial, and many other popular clubs here that you might already be participating in a version of at your school. Even better, we have a ton of clubs that you’ve probably never even dreamed of before—activities that you probably never thought existed, such as an Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association Club, a Quidditch Club, a pottery club, a quilting organization, and The Colby Ringers, our own handbell choir.

At Colby, you can find an organization or club dedicated to your interests, however unique they may be!


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The finals are here. Be scared, be very scared.

Alas, tis the season of finals are upon us again. After three years, I have perfected my routine for optimal cramming. What are some of the tips to survive this intense period?

  1. Wake up early. The campus is full of people trying to secure a spot in the library or an empty room to hit the books, and the earlier you drag yourself out of bed, the higher the chance that you don’t need to share a table with three other people in the noisy part of Miller. The campus is a battlefield, and you want a snipper spot.
  2. Take short, power naps. Let’s be realistic here, most of us are not going to sleep a lot during this week. It’s perfectly okay, it is part of being in college. No judgement. So, I take short twenty minutes naps every few hours to recharge. Suit yourself, some people like to go for a run, some people eat hot pockets, some people make snow angels, some people gosip. Just relax once in a while.
  3. Healthy snacks. I eat food during the finals week. Somehow I am Takeru Kobayahi, inhaling everything in sight like a vacuum cleaner. If you see me you will wonder where all the food went in my five feet frame. I don’t even eat because of flavor but to focus on the wriggly lines in books. In order to prevent future health problem, I buy healthier snacks like dried fruits, carrots and hummus, and greek yogurt.

Finals are scary, I am not going to sugar coat it. However if you set up daily plans and take breaks, you will be just fine. Christmas is right around the corner!

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Selfie Culture

Ahhh yes the dreaded week looms ahead of us. This is the one time of the year where you can find the writing center open for 72 hours straight, students camping out in the library, and food provided almost every hour as a “study break” (really, it’s just called procrastination central).

This is finals week.

One of my finals involves writing an essay about an article for anthropology about selfies. If you don’t know what a selfie is (although I don’t know how you can’t), it is an image someone takes of themselves. The photographer is the central person in the image. “My Selfie, Myself” gave a look at the anthropological significance and growth of selfies. In this culture that we live in, selfies are images, taken by anyone from tweens to adults, that attempt to capture the moment. Whether it be through funny faces or spectacular smiles, selfies stop time.

People are innately drawn to looking at themselves. Perhaps it was with the invention of mirrors that began the era of people becoming fixated on their appearance. But now, people are constantly checking their reflection to see how they look. This is made easier with the invention of the camera on the front of the phone instead of just the back (perfect for the selfie-takers). The creation of the app Snapchat has also skyrocked the usage and taking of selfies. Snapchat enables you to send friends a picture of something (often yourself) for a limited amount of time. People sometimes use it to send something embarrassing that will disappear within seconds.

So as you may know from many of my pictures…..I enjoy taking selfies. In addition, I use Snapchat to talk to my friends much more than texting or videochatting or calling. Why, you may ask? A picture is worth a thousand words. Why just tell my friends something when they can see it with their own eyes? Why not show them what I am talking about or express how I am feeling through a selfie and let the image speak for itself? I do like making….rather quirky faces and making my friends laugh. I enjoy seeing their faces and giggling to myself as well! Selfies open up a small window into my life and enable me to experience a small part of my friends’ lives. So why not?

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The End

As the semester winds down, I can’t believe how quickly it went by. Somehow I managed to sit through twelve weeks of class and now it’s all over. Fifty minutes. An hour and fifteen minutes. Lunch. Workouts for lacrosse.

I used to roll my eyes and say how cliché it was when seniors told me how fast college goes by. But, it literally feels like just yesterday I still had half of my college career left. And I can’t believe I haven’t seen some of my best friends since our annual summer lacrosse tournament in mid-August.

But while I can muse on upon times past and give scientific studies that prove time passes faster as you get older and so on and so forth, what the passing of half a semester means is a few great things.

For one, it’ ski season. Tomorrow, I get to hit the slopes and I could not be more excited. Yes, I may not be skiing in the glades, but there’s nothing like the first day of ski season. If you can get that first carve on a trail, there’s nothing better.

Plus, it takes your mind off of finals week for a bit. I just had like 15 projects due last week and I have some papers and an exam next week. Taking a break to go ski for a day is just what I need. And once it’s all over, we have Christmas break, followed by what at Colby College is the most wonderful time of the year. We’re talking about Jan Plan. Enjoy a little class, have some fun and ski. Can’t wait.

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If an upperclassmen were to walk up the two flights of stairs leading up to the second floor of Miller Library during the last week of classes, s/he would be greeted by a familiar sight: Each year, right before reading period, the Colby College Farnham Writers’ Center holds Write Around the Clock. This is a special event, in which Colby tutors are available to help others with the paper writing process for 48 consecutive hours.

The Write Around the Clock schedule is always booked solid, even during the wee hours of the night. Students work together to discuss grammar, organization, and mechanics during the busiest paper-writing season on campus. There are even snacks for tutors and tutees to consume to sustain themselves during finals—donuts, muffins, goldfish, pretzels, and candy. Oh, and of course there is coffee and tea on stock, so as to keep everyone’s brains fully operating throughout the day and night!

The Colby College Writers’ Center is a great resource for students of all class levels to use when working on any type of writing-related task. Students can visit the center to brainstorm for papers, to draft outlines for papers, to practice speeches, to review drafts of papers, and even to work on non-Colby assignments like job, internship, or fellowship applications. Check out our website, here:

The Center is a nice complement to other resources that we have on campus like the Career Center, which offers events like Resumania (to go over resumes) and cover letter review activities.

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Birthday Extravaganza Part II

Aren’t friends great? Not only did I get a cheesecake, but my friends from home brought a home-made cake! Once again, illegal candles were lit in my room and the celebration continued. My friends from home and I talked for hours, catching up on everything from classes to boys to future plans. It was the best birthday I could have asked for!

Date: November 23rd (1D Day)
The following day, two of my friends had to leave. We woke up 2 hours later than planned (and two hours after the alarm rang) but we still managed to eat some breakfast (or brunch) before they had to go. Good food with good people…that’s the life. So how would my friend and I spend her final day at Colby after she had traveled over 3 hours to get here? Well, my friend and I are Directioners (One Direction fans). Saturday was a momentous day for One Direction because they were hosting a live streaming show for 7 hours straight for the first time. The event was named, 1D Day (that’s when you know it’s big). We chilled in my dorm stuffing our faces with leftover cake and candy while the voices of Louis, Harry, Liam, Niall, and Zayn filled the room.

After a couple of mind-numbing hours we took a break to eat dinner in downtown Waterville and hang out with some of my friends. It was weird to have both my friends from home and my friends from school together in one place. Two worlds seemed to be colliding together. I didn’t know how to introduce my friends or how they would interact. I’ve made strong connections with both of them but they are friends from two different parts of my life, from two different phases of me. College Anh is different from High School Anh, as I can imagine it is for most people. I have changed as I moved onto a new part of my life and with that came a new group of friends. However, I realized that friends are friends. People are people. And we all got along well. :)

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Above the Hills

Finals week quickly approaches. Projects are mounting! I’ll let you enjoy the beginning of a short story for my creative writing course for now.


Below a cascading hill, beyond the villages surrounding Dublin, a wolf was slinking towards a familiar smell. Its ragged fur, patched tightly around its ribcage stood on end. The full moon was sinking below the horizon as dawn began to creep out, but its white shine glittered off the wolf’s snarled teeth as it slackened its jaw. Further up the hill, in a flat grassy knoll, a flock of sheep slept peacefully unaware. There would be no bleating, only the fast exhalation of wind shooting around the bend, rustling their thick, white wool. Winter was coming and the smell of autumn had been replaced with a sharp reminder that snow would soon fall. The wolf tip toed, as a young child up past his bedtime towards a pleasurable conquest. But someone was awake, watching. Alert ears wriggled and their owner roared out of his apparent slumber as if to shout, “No!” The sheepdog walked slowly forward and looked down the hill, staring into the pale, yellow eyes of the wolf. And both beasts knew there would be no undeserved feast. The jester walked away in defeat, the king stood triumphantly, a lion protecting his herd, as the sun broke over the hill and morning arrived as the moon slipped away.


At approximately the same time the moon now shone on James Greeley as he waited for his son’s train to pull in from Trinity college. What appeared to be a wolf was also slinking towards him. But idling in his black Chevrolet Tahoe, smoking a cigar from a recent business trip to Cuba he did not notice. The cigar was aRomeo y Juliet. It was tightly rolled and burned at the same pace of his car’s exhaust. The smell of tobacco meshed well with his Classic Old Spice deodorant, Galapagos Bay Rum aftershave and Givenchy Pour Homme body and hair wash. The only smell missing was the particles of sawdust from his old truck that had been replaced by the smell of new, expensive car. His wife had made him replace the truck. On the grounds of safety. He smoked his cigar in protest.


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