As it gets closer and closer to the dreaded finals week, as essay after essay pile up,  and with the incessantly overcast weather, we thought there are probably a lot of negative feelings floating around. And you know, the best way of getting rid of negative feelings is to actually feel them. As you look at these here villains, let it all out. Yes, good. Let the hate flow through you.

Xenomorph from Aliens

GAH! That ghastly face and that grotesque body evoke some innate sense of disgust and repulsion in all of us. We hate to be prejudiced, but the Xenomorph is so ugly that racism is almost okay. Somewhere, in some Tibetan mountain, there is a monk that is so enlightened that he can accept the Xenomorph as a beautiful creature produced by millenniums of  painstaking evolution. For everyone else, it’s just a creepy alien.

Mr.Henry F. Potter from It’s a Wonderful Life

You don’t hate people just for being rich, you just get jealous of them. But Mr.Potter isn’t just a rich person. He’s greedy. He’s selfish. He’s dishonest. And worst of all, he’s got a horrific set of old man eyebrows. He makes a terrific villain because he’s such a caricature of a scrooge.


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What going to Cal can feel like.

What going to Cal can feel like.

Sometimes we get a little psycho during stressful times in college. We find ourselves doing crazy things like staying up all night studying, or waking up with our heads on our desks. While that regretted crick in your neck will even itself out eventually, you might want to take a closer look at yourself if your bad study habits have forced you to trade your ID lanyard for a neck brace.

Here are ten signs that getting that perfect GPA might be more trouble than it’s worth:

1. The milk in your fridge isn’t for cereal, it’s coffee creamer. (Breakfast? What’s that?)

2. Actually, scratch that – Red Bull: Breakfast of champions.

3. Someone tells you your mascara is running. Turns out they’re talking about the permanent dark circles under your eyes.

4. You’ve re-read three textbooks to pass your history class, and still get a B.

5. You consider dropping out because of that B.

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Lately, we haven’t been sleeping too well. We know many of you probably haven’t either, since the midterm season brings more than just exam stress. It brings an entire mid-semester slump! (Maybe it’s partly due to some bad sleeping habits?)

Here’s a few tips to getting better sleep, tailored to a sleep-deprived student body:

If you need rest, keep reading.

If you need rest, keep reading.

1. Organize your thoughts in a new, systematic way.

We’ve found that writing down a “to improve” list can be helpful. Why? In general, students deal with a large number of smaller stresses — exams, disagreements with roommates, buying textbooks — versus something larger. It can often feel overwhelming to try to constantly sort priorities, compartmentalize and keep focused with so many things to remember. As a result, we feel overwhelmed and plagued by worry! Keeping your priorities accessible and clear can eliminate an urge to mentally “search” and therefore lead to less struggle in falling asleep. (Read more about sleep and organization here.)

2. Take a closer look at read more »


Nothing is going right, it’s one of those days. It’s raining and you forgot your jacket, your socks are wet. You didn’t understand half the questions on your quiz in discussion and you can’t find a seat in Moffitt. When you were walking home a car hit a pothole and splashed water all over you. You tried to make a joke and no one laughed. It’s a bad day. What you could really use is a pick-me-up along with some instant noodles, a hot shower and a hug. We can’t help you with those last three but we can help you find some great compliments on the fly to help turn that frown upside down.

Emergency Compliment is a site just for that. It has nice collection of creative pick-me-ups that puts a grin on our faces. Here’s just a few:

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The Dreaded Email

This email came out last Monday, without any warning at all. What followed it was an email from the Office of the Registrar, titled “Telebears for Spring 2013???????,” give or take a couple question marks. This multitude of inquisitive punctuations mirrored the look on our faces: TELE-BEARS ALREADY?! We’ve only been in our current classes for a little over a month, and we have to start thinking about our NEXT semester of classes? Plus deal with the wrath of the telebear? As Berkeley students, we all know the feeling. We have to figure out which classes to take in the first place, refine that list, organize them so that there are no conflicts and nap-time can be fit in, and then do it all again when Tele-BEARS shreds that first plan in an office-grade shredder.

With less than two weeks before Phase I descends upon us, here are some tips to make the best of schedule-planning season:

Talk to your major/college advisor – So we can probably all agree that we are independent students who can handle our own responsibilities! Many extend this to their schedule-building. But so few know that major advisors are such a great and underutilized resource! They know your major best — it’s their job — and can thus show you what classes you need to take, when you need to take them by, degree options that you may not be aware of and, we know this has probably killed a lot of you, which classes are during available in certain semesters. They are here to help you! And they’re hella nice people to boot. Find yours here.

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“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened,” a biblical man once said in some biblical book.

Winter break provided some much needed rest for many of our finals-ravaged students. Some took the break to come down from their Adderall high, while others sipped hot cocoa and made snow angels. However, some didn’t see the holidays as calming as others. For those who feel the need to de-stress by committing felonies (see burning christmas tree), there are other ways to do so this year! With midterms rearing around the corner for many people, here are some new ways to avert your frustration…

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mindfulThe phrase, “Live in the moment,” has grown to lose its meaning over the years. After all, how exactly does one go about acting out this popular phrase? Well, it turns out a new study has discovered just how to “live in the moment” along with its numerous health benefits .

Living in the moment, also known as mindfulness, is a state of actively focusing one’s attention on the present. This act of being mindful reduces stress, boosts immunity, and increases levels of happiness in addition to fighting depression. We understand that these days, the mind of a college student is chaotic, dwelling on the past and worrying about the future, but with benefits like these, we’re thinking you might want to take these four simple steps to being mindful: read more »


In the hectic and chaotic world known as UC Berkeley, stress is almost inevitable. With all the papers to write, meetings to attend and midterms to take, students rarely make time just for themselves. If you’ve ever just wanted to escape from all the madness (even for just an hour), we recommend taking a walk down to Shattuck and breathing your troubles away!

The yoga studio is free as it is donation-based and operates throughout the day. read more »

December is upon us. To some, this means losing the classy facial hair lovingly cultivated during the past month. To others, it means putting the Christmas playlist on infinite repeat. And to all of us students, December’s arrival means we have to start worrying about exams and impending end-of-semester deadlines.

Believe it or not, all that worry can have an unintended consequence: stress.

Luckily, there are many resources available to students for stress management. The Tang Center’s website has a detailed list of the common stressors in student life, along with advice on how to remedy them. Tang additionally offers stress and anxiety counseling, for those who are really stricken. There’s also a stress management seminar, lead by licensed psychologist Linda Zaruba, being held tonight at the Faculty Club (6153) from 6:30-8pm. Sure, it’s geared toward graduate students, but if you’re a really stressed undergrad we’re sure there’s nothing to stop you from showing up for advice and some light refreshments. Eating well is key to combatting stress, after all.

So relax! Enjoy this last week of classes. Or, if you can’t, at least try not to pull any all-nighters. That craziness is proven to lower your GPA.

Image source: bottled_void under Creative Commons
Be Well! [Tang Center]

Did you know that there are less than ten hours until “Pantsless O’Clock?” Neither did we, until we were introduced to the official website, that is.

The site proclaims that “Pantsless O’Clock is a daily reminder to take time to enjoy life unrestricted by pants, trousers, or similar leg coverings. Too often we keep our lower bodies covered and constricted.” That’s cool. A little funny, we suppose. But perhaps the simple act of shedding one’s pants is representative of much more: For anywhere from several moments to an entire hour, being pantsless flies in the face of the societal necessities demanded of us at all other times. It could be, essentially, the ideal of perfect psychological liberation.

But what is all this getting at? read more »

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