14 Ways to Keep Yourself Busy This Summer

14 Ways to Keep Yourself Busy This Summer

With the semester coming to a close and our social calendars looking less and less full it's important to find some ways to keep yourself busy this summer!
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As the spring semester comes to a close, us college students feel a strange mix of excitement and dread for the coming summer: excitement for the end of the endless hours spent in the library, the end of papers and the luxury of not having to get up for those dreaded 8 AM classes. However, we dread leaving our friends and the constant companionship they bring. We dread not having our social calendars filled like they are during the academic year. We dread being bored. Thankfully, I put some serious thought into the many ways you can keep yourself busy this summer!

1. Try out restaurants you haven't tried before.

I know that there are so many restaurants in and around my hometown that I haven't ever been to. I'm hoping to spend my summer enjoying trying out new cuisine.

2. Learn how to cook something new every week.

On the topic of food, learn how to cook something new at least once a week. By the end of the summer you will be shocked at how many new recipes you learned!

3. Go for a bike ride.

Or in my case, make this the summer that you finally learn how to ride a bike. Spend a few hours getting lost in the surrounding areas. Enjoy the fresh air this summer.

4. Learn how to sail.

This may not apply to everyone but if you live near a body of water, take a sailing class. Sailing is something you can enjoy for the rest of your life. Why not let this be the summer you learn this life changing activity?

5. Craft.

As a college student, buying decorations for your dorm or apartment can get pretty expensive. Instead, spend the summer making your own artwork to furnish your place with.

6. Read an entire book series.

Is there a book series you have been dying to read but didn't have the time for this semester? Hoping to re-read Harry Potter for approximately the 1000th time? Now is your chance!

7. Take a yoga/dance/zumba class.

Summer is a great time to get in shape. Can't find a workout class? Get a gym membership! Can't afford one? Go for a run or look on YouTube for one of the many workout videos there.

8. Netflix binge.

Netflix binges are always a struggle during the semester: you want to watch all of Gilmore Girls in a week but you have that paper you're putting off nagging you the entire time. You don't have to worry about that during the summer. Time to make your popcorn and wonder over the fate of Rory and Jess for seven seasons.

9. Have a bonfire with your friends and family.

There is no better way to spend a Friday evening than sitting around a fire with the people you love most. Enjoy watching the fireflies and breathing in the fresh air.

10. Volunteer.

Find a place to volunteer: the local soup kitchen, an animal shelter or any other organization. Helping others is an incredibly enriching way to spend your summer.

11. Work.

College students are constantly struggling with money. Spend your summer building your bank account back up. Take advantage of the reduced cost of living at home instead of an expensive apartment.

12. Go to concerts.

Whether it be a small local concert or your all time favorite band, a night of listening to live music is guaranteed fun!

13. Start a garden.

You'll save a ton of money on produce if you start your own vegetable garden. One of my favorite foods in the summer is tomatoes right off the vine.

14. Get a group together for pick-up games of your favorite sport.

Play some basketball, soccer or Ultimate Frisbee! Not only are you getting active, but you're spending some great quality time with your friends.

Fill your summer with as much fun and adventure as you possibly can!

Cover Image Credit: http://az616578.vo.msecnd.net/files/2016/02/27/635921501148567896926053572_Summer%20(5).jpg

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A Playlist From The iPod Of A Middle Schooler In 2007

I will always love you, Akon.
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Something happened today that I never thought in a million years would happen. I opened up a drawer at my parents' house and I found my pink, 4th generation iPod Nano. I had not seen this thing since I graduated from the 8th grade, and the headphones have not left my ears since I pulled it out of that drawer. It's funny to me how music can take you back. You listen to a song and suddenly you're wearing a pair of gauchos, sitting on the bleachers in a gym somewhere, avoiding boys at all cost at your seventh grade dance. So if you were around in 2007 and feel like reminiscing, here is a playlist straight from the iPod of a middle schooler in 2007.

1. "Bad Day" — Daniel Powter

2. "Hips Don't Lie" — Shakira ft. Wyclef Jean

SEE ALSO: 23 Iconic Disney Channel Moments We Will Never Forget

3. "Unwritten" — Natasha Bedingfield

4. "Run It!" — Chris Brown

5. "Girlfriend" — Avril Lavigne

6. "Move Along" — All-American Rejects

7. "Fergalicious" — Fergie

8. "Every Time We Touch" — Cascada

9. "Ms. New Booty" — Bubba Sparxxx

10. "Chain Hang Low" — Jibbs

11. "Smack That" — Akon ft. Eminem

12. "Waiting on the World to Change" — John Mayer

13. "Stupid Girls" — Pink

14. "Irreplaceable" — Beyonce

15. "Umbrella" — Rihanna ft. Jay-Z

16. "Don't Matter" — Akon

17. "Party Like A Rockstar" — Shop Boyz

18. "This Is Why I'm Hot" — Mims

19. "Beautiful Girls" — Sean Kingston

20. "Bartender" — T-Pain

21. "Pop, Lock and Drop It" — Huey

22. "Wait For You" — Elliot Yamin

23. "Lips Of An Angel" — Hinder

24. "Face Down" — Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

25. "Chasing Cars" — Snow Patrol

26. "No One" — Alicia Keys

27. "Cyclone" — Baby Bash ft. T-Pain

28. "Crank That" — Soulja Boy

29. "Kiss Kiss" — Chris Brown

SEE ALSO: 20 Of The Best 2000's Tunes We Still Know Every Word To

30. "Lip Gloss" — Lil' Mama

Cover Image Credit: http://nd01.jxs.cz/368/634/c6501cc7f9_18850334_o2.jpg

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The Publishing of T.S. Eliot's Correspondence: What is Life's Poetry Without Irony?

Volume 8 of Eliot's letters has now been published by Faber & Faber, and the poet who preached the irrelevance of a work's author once again eludes self-limitation.

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T.S. Eliot (1888-1965) was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948.

Often said to be the chief representative of modernist poetry, he is also considered by many to be the most significant poet of the 20th century.

Author of "The Waste Land", "Four Quartets", and "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats", he is both endlessly enjoyed and endlessly debated.


T.S. Eliot, for the sake of his fans and for that of academics with a vested interest in his legacy, now has his life further displayed to the eyes of the world. The massive project of publishing his correspondence has reached its eighth volume, and two more years of his life (1936-1938) are now further open to scrutiny. The supreme irony here is that Eliot, who stipulated in his will that there never be a biography written of him, would not have thought very kindly of the idea of prying into his personal life in order to interpret his poetry.

In fact, he preached an entire theory of poetry opposed to such an idea.

In his 1919 essay "Tradition and the Individual Talent", he argues at length that, when judging the value of a work of poetry, the work's authorship is totally irrelevant. The reader should value the work in and of itself. Thus we arrive at a purer form of encountering art, one supposes; this was a solemn creed for the modernists. The reader of Joyce's "Ulysses" or Eliot's own "The Waste Land" either becomes comfortable with the paradox of not understanding as itself a form of understanding or rejects the work as something as far as possible from "Art" as it can possibly be. This is a form of experiencing art that places the experience at the forefront. Art is not meant to mean anything; rather, it is meant to be experienced, or, rather, the experience of it is its meaning. The text is what is important, and discussing the history behind it or the context of its creation is useless, weighing the reader down. Let the poet empty himself entirely of self, Eliot urges in his essay, and let the poetry be poetry.

Eliot was an imperfect man, but one flaw that he definitely lacked was stupidity. How could a man famous the world over seriously request that no biography be written of him; how could he stand so firmly and purely for an artistic posture as to propose that it be translated into a code of conduct? The answer, I suspect, is a beautiful one, and one just as complex as his best poetry.

When Eliot converted from (agnostic) Unitarianism in 1927 to the Church of England and set himself on the path of spending the rest of his life as a committed Anglo-Catholic, he completely scandalized his literary circle. Not only did such people as Virginia Woolf consider it offensive for someone to go in for organized religion, it seemed totally incomprehensible that someone like Eliot, who so eloquently demonstrated the beauty of artistic iconoclasm, would go in for what seemed to be the very essence of an aesthetically useless, dying, old world order. Eliot, however, never considered his conversion to be a break; rather, he simply thought of it as development. "Ash-Wednesday" is certainly not written in the same style as "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock". That they have themes in common is undeniable.

The Unitarianism that Eliot inherited from his family was not at all concerned with the Incarnation of Christ; Anglo-Catholicism, however, was obsessed with it. There is no personality behind divinity in the former; in the latter, it is essential that the creator be accessible through the creation. The distance between the work and the author is emphasized in the former, while the proximity is stressed in the latter. There is nobody behind the poem in the theory articulated in "Tradition and the Individual Talent". In Anglo-Catholic theology, the world revolves around the presence of the Body behind the work.

Orthodox Christianity rejoices in paradox; thus, Christ's self-emptying (kenosis) in becoming Man is a complete unclothing from the state of divine exaltation, even as the state of divinity is simultaneously retained. If the author of a work is a god and the work is his creation, then the theory of poetry Eliot encourages us to hold is analogous to agnosticism or atheism. Yet Eliot believed in a type of Christianity as far from agnosticism as possible, refusing to ignore the presence of God and the saints. Eliot's play "Murder in the Cathedral" portrays martyred archbishop Thomas Becket as a man who empties himself of self, yet he is a man whose name is after death immortalized by those who venerate him, while the physical remains of his earthly existence become objects of devotion. Eliot preached anonymity, yet the world is hardly going to forget him any time soon. Eliot might have outwardly wished that his name be forgotten and his poetry remembered, but he may have inwardly wished that he be both forgotten and remembered at one and the same time, that his name remain forever caught up in the glorious paradox that is itself really the essence of poetry. We can, I venture, make good use of our opportunity to pry into Eliot's life, even while recognizing that he would have protested, even while recognizing that such prying is fully connected to a side of his art that is totally indispensable.

We can, in a word, be totally atheistic believers in his art, recognizing that only in such a way can we recognize the greatness of poetry capacious enough to go beyond itself even while remaining itself and nothing else.

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