By Erica Schwartz
When one walks out of his or her dorm, one would expect – or at least hope for – a pleasant smell. Except that there are some cases when one gets a whiff of cigarettes.
I promise not to completely rant about smoking. I personally don’t agree with people who smoke, but I will point out one of the reasons why some people continue to smoke:
“Cigarettes make you lose weight and if you stop, you’ll gain back even more!”
If this applies to you, then you need to reevaluate your priorities in life. While I believe in the importance of losing weight, health is just that much more crucial. Without your health, you have nothing.
Yes, cigarettes could potentially affect your eating habits, making you eat less because you are smoking more. But is it really worth it? I guarantee that if you are sufficiently determined, any weight gain can easily be shed in just a couple of days by simply working out and eating healthy again. No one needs to depend on cigarettes for a skinny physique.
The nasty little lung cancer sticks are expensive, especially for those of us who live within a college budget. Cigarettes can take away the energy that you could instead be using to exercise more (if you wanted to exercise more).
If you want to look good physically, your body needs to also be in a healthy state. So, next time you hear a friend say, “I’m going to get fat if I quit!” then just slap him or her right across the face because it’s not true.
By Katrina Uy, Staff Writer
If you think you know Boston, think again.
Last year, I participated in Boston University’s annual Amazing Race, which is based off of the CBS reality television show of the same name. The event was exactly what it sounds like: one massive scavenger hunt and a race against time to find clues leading to a certain destination, and sometimes even completing tasks at those destinations to receive the next clue. The last team to arrive gets eliminated.
I was one of eight people that made up a team representing my favorite club, the Boston University Filipino Student Association. I was excited beyond belief to run around this amazing city we call home and (hopefully) earn a monetary prize for my club. But, there were some things I wish I had known beforehand – and that’s where I extend my knowledge onto you.
This year’s race will be held on Nov. 16. Here are some helpful tips and tricks on what to expect:
- Brush up on knowledge about Boston and the neighborhoods within it; bring maps and guidebooks if you can. These are vital, since all cellphones and electronic devices will be taken away the morning of the race. Having some sort of prior knowledge beforehand or a few resources you can turn to during the race will save you precious time! Be prepared to approach total strangers for help as well.
- Get a day pass for the T. You’ll be running all over the city, so you might as well save some money while you’re at it. A 1-Day Pass costs $11.00 and gives you unlimited travel on the MBTA. I highly recommend purchasing one before the day of the race.
- Bundle up – wear layers! Boston weather is highly unpredictable and you’re bound to get hot and sweaty at some point. Be comfortable but practical.
- Bring a small, light drawstring bag or backpack with you. Bring a small supply of snacks to keep you energized throughout the day (granola bars, fruit, etc.) and maybe a water bottle or two. You can also stash your guidebooks and maps in here! A couple of Band-Aids or a small first-aid kit never hurts, either.
- Get a decent amount of sleep the night before. Pretty self-explanatory. You’ll need all the energy you can get, so rest up!
And last but not least, expect to have fun and make a handful of memories!
Some of the most memorable tasks we had to do last year in order to receive the next clue included acting out a scene from a Shakespearean play, walking into an antique store and asking someone to draw a portrait of one of our team members, and making a cheer for one of Boston’s many sports teams at the TD Garden.
Last year, I only got four hours of sleep the night before, wore horrible shoes and sprained my ankle while my team sprinted to get to the next clue. Talk about a major fail on my part. But with the help of my teammates and at least a dozen piggyback rides later, we were able to finish at a decent time before getting eliminated.
To those of you participating in this year’s Amazing Race, I wish you the best of luck.
May the odds be ever in your favor.
By Devon Delfino, Staff Writer
According to BuzzFeed, a woman identified as Alicia Ann Lynch posted photos of herself at work dressed up as a Boston Marathon bombing victim for Halloween on Twitter and Instagram. (In case you were wondering, no, she’s not from Massachusetts.) Needless to say, the backlash has been extreme.
I am fully on-board for funny, stupid Halloween costumes, after all, it’s about having fun. But, when someone takes an especially sensitive thing and turns it into a purely offensive mockery, I’m not okay with that.
Yet, there she is, smiling away at the so-called ‘hilarity’ of the joke she’s playing (but who is it meant for?). She clearly has no second thoughts about the costume and sees nothing wrong with it. In what way was this supposed to be funny? Maybe she forgot that people died, were brutally injured and lost loved ones; she may have forgotten, but Boston hasn’t.
And neither has the rest of the world, it would seem. Following the post, there have been countless tweets condemning her actions. Lynch’s Twitter account has since been suspended and she’s also lost her job.
In an e-mail to BuzzFeed, Lynch writes, “It seems as though my outfit was too soon, and will always be that way, it was wrong of me and very distasteful. My costume was not meant to disrespect anyone, ever. I am truly sorry to anyone that I may have offended or hurt with this.”
However, the backlash has gone beyond scolding to death threats toward Lynch and her family. Once again, the internet gives people the opportunity to do the wrong thing.
People like Lynch aren’t in need of brutality and death threats, they need to see the error of their ways and the cruelty that their actions inflict. Involving her family is just wrong: they are not her, she is an adult and is responsible for her own actions. They already have to deal with the fact that their daughter is under fire for what she did.
Come on people, can’t we do better?
By Sabrina Katz, Staff Writer
The gorgeous marbled floors and beautiful outside facade should be enough to reel any passersby inside the Hillel House at Boston University. But if the architecture isn’t reason enough to get you to step inside Hillel, I’ll give you one now: free Friday night dinners.
That’s right folks, for those of you who don’t have an unlimited meal plan or just want a break from the dining hall food, you get a chance every week to meet some new people and enjoy a tasty, feels-like-home-cooked meal.
In order to claim your wonderful Hillel dining experience, the first thing you gotta do is secure a meal ticket. All it takes is a few minutes to sign yourself up on the BU Hillel website and you’re set.
After signing myself up, I waited for Friday to finally come around. Religious services started at 6 p.m. and went on for about an hour and a half. Afterwards, everyone made their way to the third floor of the Hillel house.
The dining room layout was almost like a wedding: round tables with seats surrounding them with dinner rolls and grape juice (mimicking wine) as the centerpiece. Once everyone was settled, someone came out and said grace, or Kiddush, and the meal was finally open.
Our first food option was matzah ball soup. What’s matzah ball soup, you say? It’s a broth based soup, usually with carrots and celery, which also consists of dozens of fluffy soft balls made from ground up matzah and spices. They become so delicate from sitting inside the soup and soaking up all the juices and spices, which makes for a delicious and hearty appetizer. That, accompanied with challah, an eggy, sweet bread, made this meal like one from my grandmother’s house.
After the soup and bread, there was much more to come: salad, brisket, chicken, vegetable medleys and roasted potatoes were all delivered to each table to make up the bulk of our meals. The food was absolutely scrumptious and it felt like a huge shift from what I’m used to having at Warren.
In addition to the wonderful food, the atmosphere of the dinner was great. Everyone was talking to each other and it felt very comforting being in a place with so many friendly people. Jews and non-Jews alike attended the festive meal, enforcing BU’s emphasis on diversity and learning about new cultures and people.
Though I can’t fly down to Houston on Friday nights to eat a family dinner, it feels nice to find a place where I can still feel comfortable with my new family in Boston.
By Brandon Lewis, Staff Writer
Earlier this month, CNN released its Top 10 Heroes of 2013 list, shedding light on average individuals attempting to make a difference.
This year’s winners partake in a wide range of causes such as providing shelter for disabled veterans and helping inner-city children stay off the streets. Each hero is rewarded $50,000 for their philanthropic efforts and will be honored at “CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute” airing on Dec. 1.
2013 has been a crazy year for Boston and there are plenty of people who deserve to be recognized for their efforts to keep our city intact. Here are my “Top 3 Boston Heroes of 2013″:
No matter how the World Series turns out (preferably with a title), the success of the Red Sox is arguably the best sports story in Boston this year. Following their worst season since 1965, the Sox had a strong 2013 season with 97 wins to only 65 losses. They became the 11 team in major league history to go from worst in the division to first the following season. They finished this year tied with the Cardinals for the best record in baseball. What a year for the team!
With the mayoral election coming up next week, it’s only right to salute the man who has kept Boston in check for the past two decades. As Thomas Menino enters his final months in office, the 70-year-old Boston native remains a popular figure amongst city residents. Some of his accomplishments include improving the Boston Schools system and founding the Innovation District. And the little things, such as fixing potholes and revitalizing neighborhoods. Many are sad to see him go but he felt it was time to pack up the cleats. Mr. Menino, we’ll miss you!
Boston Police Department, Watertown Police Department, First Responders, and Good Samaritans at the Boston Marathon
The unthinkable occurred at this year’s Boston Marathon. A day of celebration and triumph quickly turned into a tragedy. Two bombs exploded near the finish line, killing three and injuring over 260. Instead of fleeing the area, many bystanders ran to helpless individuals injured on the ground to keep them calm and ensure that help was on the way. The help came in the form of first responders. Their primary goal was identifying injured individuals and getting them to hospitals as fast as they could. Four days after the attack, the Watertown Police Department along with the Boston Police Department killed Tamerlan Tsarnaev, one of the suspects, and captured the other, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. On behalf of Boston and the state of Massachusetts, I would like to salute all the heroes, recognized or unsung, of the Boston Marathon.
Boston is a tough and resilient town, and so are its heroes.
By Sabrina Katz, Staff Writer
The month of October has officially marked the transition from summer to fall here in Boston. I’m definitely not used to it getting this cold this early in the year (I’m a Southern girl, folks!).
In order to take full advantage of this sweater weather, some friends and I decided to take a trip to Boston’s SoWa Open Market. The market is located in the South End, which means it’s just a hop, skip and a jump away. Actually, it was more of a stroll, subway ride, then trek away, but because it was a sunny day, we didn’t mind.
Upon arriving at the vintage market, we noticed the two sections: one side had food products while the other had all the fun knick knacks you’d expect to see at an outdoor market.
We began by exploring the food section and discovered all the local food fare that Boston had to offer. Fresh harvest fruits and veggies, tons of jellies and preserves and even hot sauces were an option in this parking lot-turned-market. As we looked around, the vendors gave out plenty of samples, which helped fill our bellies after the long walk it took to get there.
When we finished checking out each stand, we decided to move on to the dark side (yes, they did have cookies thanks to the “Cookie Monstah” food truck!).
It wasn’t really the dark side, just the other section of the market that sold non-food items. We saw tons of vendors selling clothes, scarves, accessories and other home decor. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the posing boards! You know, the ones where there’s a hole cut out for someone’s head and there’s a funny body on the front? After a couple pictures with those, our day was officially made.
While searching for something special, I noticed a fashion truck that was selling clothes inside its little trailer body. That’s where I found them: fleece-lined leggings. That’s right people, LEGGINGS LINED WITH FLEECE.
There is definitely a rule somewhere that says that you can’t just walk away from such a tremendous purchase, there’s no way! After handing over a mere $20 for these soft, fuzzy tights, I emerged from the truck victorious. It ended up being the only thing I spent money on all day, which is a pretty cool thing to say as a young college student.
I really wish I could tell you all to go to the SoWa market because I had an amazing time there. Unfortunately, this past weekend was the last opportunity to visit, which means we’ll all just have to go back next year. And there’s not a doubt in my mind that I will!
By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
“You have to draw from something, but to the extent that people feel that it’s touching them now and it’s applicable to their daily listening, I think that you can be retro and current at the same time,” he said in a phone interview with the Daily Free Press.
King is on tour again, a state that’s become all-too familiar after the three-year period of tours between the band’s first album, “Picking Up the Pieces”and their most current album, “More than Just a Dream.” The tour for the new album began earlier this month, and they return to Boston Monday night to play House of Blues with Capital Cities for their “Bright Futures” tour.
“To show up in Boston and have people know who were are and sing along with our songs… It’s all really humbling,” King said.
The band will mainly feature songs from their newest album, which fuses the repurposed ‘60s soul vibe of “Picking Up the Pieces” with ‘80s synth pop and modern indie dance music. While writing “More than Just a Dream,” all of the members of the band exchanged iPods and talked about a new sound for a new album – and the change is drastic.
While just as catchy as “Picking Up the Pieces,” “More than Just a Dream” is designed for the live audience, as lead singer Michael Fitzpatrick verified in an interview with the Charleston City Paper. Still in the early days of the tour, it’s hard to say how this ideal will play out, but the reputation the band has for an energetic live show suggests a fun evening at House of Blues tonight.
Tickets were still available at the time this article was published. Check out the band’s latest music video, “The Walker,” before the show tonight below:
By Amy Gorel, Staff Writer
In case you missed it:
1. Whoever wins the Nov. 5 election and replaces Menino will be the first new mayor in 20 years.
2. Mass. Rep. Martin Walsh and City Councilor John Connolly are vying for the position.
- Walsh came in first in the September primaries, with 20,838 votes, or 18.47% of the votes.
- Walsh worked as a union laborer before being elected to the House of Representatives in 1997. He continued to be active in labor union affairs.
- Connolly came in second with 19,420 votes, or 17.22% of the votes.
- Connolly is a former public school teacher who became city councilor. He is focusing his campaign on education and reforming Boston Public Schools.
3. Less than a third of registered voters participated in the September primary. According to Mark Trachtenberg, precinct election supervisor of the BU area, reported that less than 30 BU students voted in the primary.
- Even though your license might not say Massachusetts, you could still register to vote here since you will be living here for at least four years of your life.
4. Connolly has a slight advantage over Walsh in preliminary polls, but the race is close: http://www.wbur.org/2013/10/18/elm-mayor-poll
5. November 5 is election day! The municipal election will determine the mayor, city councilors at-large and district city councillors will be. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.
- Though its too late to register for this election (needed to be done by Oct. 16), you could still prepare for future Massachusetts elections by registering here
By Shivani Patel, Staff Writer
Hello, hello! It’s time again for advice from yours truly.
On today’s agenda, we have the ever confusing (but necessary) topic of transportation. As a non-Bostonian, I can tell you how difficult it was to accept that a car was not the only means of transportation. At first, I didn’t understand how anyone got around.
However, I realized that one of the great things about Boston is that the public transportation is top notch. If you don’t believe me, try coming to California – there’s a reason we only use cars.
For you clueless souls, here’s a breakdown of some of the public transportation around BU:
1. The T (Subway)
The T is just a subway that can take you to just about anywhere you desire around Boston, whether that’s Newbury or the Financial District. The best part is, there are stops everywhere up and down Commonwealth Avenue (conveniently right in front of West and Warren).
Here’s where you ask me how do you differentiate between inbound and outbound.
Inbound means that you’ll be heading towards Government Center, and outbound means you’ll be traveling away from Government Center.
To make things easier, get a Charlie Card from the nearest T station (Kenmore) and load some money onto it. This way, the fare is cheaper and you don’t have to spend precious minutes getting a ticket.
2. BU Shuttle
One of the best and worst parts of BU is the BU Shuttle. Best part? It’s free, and it makes many stops up and down Commonwealth Avenue. It’s incredibly convenient when you have back-to-back classes (especially if they’re from East to West campus or vice versa).
Bad part? They are so unreliable. More often than not, they’re a couple minutes late due to traffic which doesn’t seem like a big deal but when you’re in a hurry, it’s going to be a huge deal.
There are a few apps that facilitate catching the bus – the schedule on the actual BU app & an app called BU Transit (which tells you simply how many minutes you’ll have to wait for the next bus).
Boston isn’t known as a walking city for nothing. It’s free – a college student’s dream. Plus, this way, you really get to experience Boston by seeing and exploring the city you’re going to be living in for the next four years. Also, it’s guaranteed that you won’t get off at the wrong stop (though you getting lost is a different story).
Hopefully you’re not as scared to take a leap of faith on get on the T or trust that the BUS will come on time after this. And of course, always look both ways and especially watch out for bicyclists when you’re walking or even when you’re trying to walk over to a T stop.
By Stacy Shoonover, Staff Writer
Talking to people about personal habits is never easy. When that habit is smoking, the air is even more tense.
After speaking to 50 BU students who smoke, I found that 90 percent of them started smoking before they came to college.
I also noticed that there is about an even population of guy smokers to girl smokers. There did not seem to be a dominant race that smoked either, just as BU’s student body is very diverse – so is the smoking student body.
My interviews were all conducted at the common smoke spots: outside of dormitories, benches along Bay State Road, Cummington Avenue, outside of the GSU, Marsh Chapel, the BU Beach and Commonwealth Avenue.
Most of the smokers I tried to interview didn’t feel comfortable being interviewed about their habits, or using their names in the article. Some, however, felt confident in sharing their experience with me.
No two smokers are alike. Some love smoking, some hate that they smoke. Some never want to quit and some have already tried and failed. Many support e-cigarettes and many disagree with them completely.
An observation from talking to non-smokers that I made is they usually judge one individual smoker based on the smoking population as a whole. Through this, I noticed that non-smokers dwell on the fact that tobacco products aren’t good for the health, and so they believe that no one should smoke. Period.
However, the same observation of “no two smokers are alike” can also be made for non-smokers. Many hate second-hand smoke, but at the same time many non-smokers don’t mind or don’t think it has a large enough effect to make a difference.
Bottom line: just because someone smokes doesn’t mean they are the same as every other smoker. Just like dying hair, or getting a tattoo – one shouldn’t be judged primarily on an appearance or habit.