Friday, October 24, 2014

What Woke Me Up at 4:00 am

I was just woken up by some kind of bee on my face so now I cannot go back to sleep. 

Correction: I may never sleep again.

Honestly, bugs are terrifying. Can we all admit that? At least with an animal you can maybe reason with it. If something has visbile eyes I feel like I could talk it out of hurting me (note: this logic does not apply to Furbies).  You can maybe even domesticate a once-threatening animal and start a lifelong relationship with what is now your new pet. But with bugs it is simply war. You vs. Them. Especially in the dark when they could be anywhere. Sure, I killed the one who woke me up, but what if it wasn't alone? If there are others I can only hope they witnessed the execution of their comrade (smothered by pillow against concrete wall) and take its death as an example.

Yes, I can tell I'm starting to sound a little psychopath-ish here, but it's 4:15 am. And I was woken up by a bee. ON MY FACE.

Not everyone hates bugs. Do you know this kind of person? The kind who insists you don't kill the stinging bastard but trap it in a cup and release it back into the wild? It's the same type of person who likes to say, "It's more scared of you than you are of it." That is just not true. Bugs come into my home all the time. They get up in my face when I'm eating lunch. This summer, one got inside my sock and stung me right on the ankle. So no, I do not think bugs are afraid of me. In fact, I think they are ridiculously cocky and see me as nothing more than some giant moving pin cushion.

Ok, I have to stop writing about bugs because it's freaking me out. Let's see, what else can I post on this blog that everyone reads.....

My sister got engaged!!! 

You guys know my sister Mallie right? She's basically a living goddess who does stuff like exercise every day, perfect homemade recipes, and not log on to our family netflix account (i.e. goddess). Her fiance, Gifford, is pretty great too. And, yes, I could go on and on about how he's bilingual, a uva grad, a naval officer, blah blah blah, but I'd rather talk about the fact that his name is Gifford. How amazing is that? Like Clifford the Big Red Dog, only it's Gifford. The bar for significant others in our family has just been raised. Touche, Mallie, touche.

Speaking of engagements, I have something to say to all the people my age getting engaged:


WHAT??????????????????????????WHY????!!!!!??????WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Now let me be clear: I am not saying that people who get engaged at 22 haven't found "the one" or that they won't have a successful marriage. I just truly don't get it. I was under the impression that dating was a pretty good deal for us young twenty-somethings. It's like being married....just not as hard. Plus, being the heterosexual that I am, I'm pretty much dreading the whole "living with a guy" ordeal. I grew up with two brothers and- even though I love them dearly- I never wanted to share a bathroom with them. Maybe chalk it up to my immaturity or my selfishness (or a number of other personal flaws I haven't recognized yet) but this whole getting a ring before a degree thing has thrown me for a loop.

I have another thing to say to all the people my age getting engaged: Seriously, I wish you the best of luck. And I wish that someday marriage will not terrify me as much as waking up to a bug on my face.

Anyone still reading this? No? Okay, cool. Just me and my thoughts.

Here's a fun fact: sometimes I like to read the titles of news articles and nothing else. Not because I'm lazy -well, not only because of that- but because it can be pretty amusing to try and guess what could possibly come next.  Here's are some real examples from my BBC app:

"Could a monster shark have kept whales in check?"

"Thousands queue for 'meat stone'"

"China says no to Dumbledore" 

If anyone writes a faux-news article for one of those three and sends it to me I will post it on this blog. Which means a few hundred or so Americans will read your work, and even more Ukrainians (I'm not kidding. This website lets me see what country people are viewing the blog from and I am more popular in the Ukraine than I am in the US. And you know what they say- if you can make it in Eastern Europe, you can make it anywhere).


You can't tell, but there has been a passage of time between this piece of text and the one prior. Another bug has lost its life in its quest to break down my sense of safety/ability to trust. I have nothing else to say. Good night (good morning). 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Social Media Has Been Cancelled Due to Lack of Hustle

This is an announcement- I, Caroline Drew, am taking a social media sabbatical. For the summer of 2014 I am deleting my facebook, twitter, instagram, and even (oh how I will miss the 5 second shots of your pets) snapchat. 

For those of you that fainted from shock/disgust/utter confusion, thank you for rejoining us. Please read with caution, however, because the above statement was not a joke. 

For those of you who are thinking "ok cool...I don't have any of those accounts either. What's the big deal?" To you I say: HOW ARE YOU SEEING THIS BLOG?! HA! CAUGHT YA!

Obviously, there are people out there who participate in all or some of these social media sites without it being an issue. Keep in mind, I plan on reviving all of my accounts come fall. My reasoning for temporarily jumping ship is as follows- wait, no, there is more than one reason. But so help me, I will not make a list. I will not. Do you hear me Buzzfeed???? 

I am not someone who has a Facebook, but rarely logs on. I am someone, however, who will scroll through Instagram ever hour. I am not someone who is on Twitter "just for news" (I'm skeptical that anyone really is. And if you are, there has got to be a better way to get the news than Twitter. Maybe this summer I will actually start reading the news and I will get back to you all on this topic). I am someone who has frequently abused the "my story" feature on Snapchat. And I do think that 'abused' is the appropriate term. 

The point is, not everyone needs a break from social media, but it's about time I detoxed. 

This summer I am trying to focus on positive, intentional living (Note: I've found that gargling listerine really rids your mouth of that cheesy cliche taste). I want to take pictures for memories' sake, not for other people. I want to have witty thoughts longer than 140 characters- because let's be real, I'm pretty witty (pretty witty? Ohhhh man! I can't be stopped!). Mostly, I want to focus on interacting with the people in my life in a genuine way that, at times, I have previously allowed social media communications to take place of. Selfishly, I am pumped about having a few less areas of my life that I feel the need to "check." If I could delete my email, trust me, I would. 

(For any Buzzfeed staff members who have stumbled upon this blog- the above section is what is commonly referred to as a 'paragraph.') 

And now, in memoriam ("but Caroline, you said this is only temporary??" Shh!! I'm doing something here!) of my time on social media, I will look back at some of my happier cyberweb moments. 

2004: Caroline creates her first email, and thus, AIM account. She chooses the name "dancequeen827" because- well, the reasons are obvious. 

2007: Caroline, at the then rebellious age of 14, activates her Facebook account. Sure, the photos uploaded during these first 2 (3,4...) years would essentially serve as blackmail later on, but who cares. She sure thought she was cute at the time and her wall-post game was killer. 

2010: Caroline joins the Twitter community. As many of her friends could guess, she has trouble fitting anything into such a small space, but like a wild animal bent on survival- she adapts. Nay, she thrives. 

2012: Caroline is now on Instagram. She is stumped by the filter "Toaster" but uses all others perfectly. 

2013: Caroline creates a snapchat handle and it's like she's never lived until now. Never before has she seen such a wide assortment of cute little kids, homework assignments (with the caption "ugh" or "literally can't"), and her friends faces contorted in the most unflattering ways. They last a few seconds, but those few seconds are glorious. 

RIP Caroline on Vine: Spring of 2013-Summer of 2013

Farewell for now social media. I will miss your many tabs and profiles. I will especially miss the way you allow me to share the most useless thoughts/pictures without repercussion. Special shout out to Twitter for that. 

If you want to facebook stalk me, retweet me, tag me in an instagram, or snapchat me yourself at the beach (don't do this, it's mean until I'm out of school too) you only have a few days left!!! 

p.s. Though it is unlikely, the blog might still resurface this summer through the social media mules I call my friends. And because they are the only ones that read this: ....I am sorry I called you all mules.

p.p.s. I know that in the past I have published articles on Buzzfeed. My sentiments towards said website, however, have changed. My breakup letter to Buzzfeed will surface onto this blog someday I'm sure, so stay tuned (ooooooh man! always keep 'em coming back for more, you, sly dog, you). 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

How to Be #blessed and Get Your #100daysofHappy

By Caroline Drew

If your social media interactions connect you with females between the ages of 15 and 50, you have seen two #'s (generally referred to as 'hashtags') quite frequently lately: 

#blessed and #100daysofHappy. 

What do these hashtags mean? Which members of society have access to them? What does being #blessed feel like? Do you actually share a hundred posts for #100daysofHappy? In response to these social media phenomena, this reporter decided to investigate. 

First, let us begin with #blessed. This hashtag is not to be used lightly. After diligently poring over facebook statuses, instagram captions, twitter tweets, and blog posts, it appears that only (and I do mean only) the following subjects deserve the badge of blessedness: 

- Holidays
- Family Time
- Home-made Food
- Your Feet at the Beach
- Your Legs at the Beach
- Good Grades
- The Sky
- A New Season of Your Favorite TV Show
- Travel
- Your Job
- Sleeping In/Napping
- Working Out
- New Purchases
- Road Trips
- Hair-Dos
- Bible Verses
- Karate Class 
- Graffiti
- Paychecks
- Costume Parties
- Fruit
- Celebrity Crushes
- Mason Jar Crafts
- Songs on the Radio
- Pets
- Yoga Poses
- Hammocks
- Being too #blessed to be #stressed
- 2048 Game
- Kissing
- Losing Weight
- Flowers
- Constitutional Rights
- Pictures You Drew
- Friends
- Sorority Sisters (or "Friends")
- Birthdays
- Cute Children (your own,ones you babysit/took a creepy photo of in a restaurant)
- Anniversaries
- Your Parents' Anniversaries
- Friday
- Snow
- Unhealthy Food
-Healthy Food
- WiFi Access
- General Personal Milestones

The last item on the list is especially important and, undoubtedly,encompasses many of the others. Research revealed that #blessed is essentially interchangeable with #bejealousbecauseimastarASTARYOUHEARME. From being accepted to college, to getting engaged, to running a 5k- these achievements mean that you are justified in posting with #blessed. The blessing is that you are better than your friends and now, they have to be reminded of it. Jesus said "Blessed are #blessed because they are feeling so #blessed" - Luke 4:1034. 

Now it is time to examine our second hashtag: #100daysofHappy. A newer trend than #blessed, #100daysofHappy does not solely function descriptively; instead, #100daysofHappy is a project. Pay attention because, like in an upper level bio-chemical engineering lab, following instructions is key: 

1. Decide you are going to have your own #100daysofHappy
2. Every day, for 100 days, share a picture with the caption including #100daysofHappy

It would be prudent to re-read those directions until you've truly internalized their meaning and committed them to memory. 

Unlike #blessed, which one employs after a cheerful occurence, #100daysofHappy literally creates happiness. By captioning your filtered pictures of a Starbucks order or trees in the spring time, it is impossible to be melancholy. Psychologists across the country are prescribing the #100daysofHappy cure every day* (*in addition to actual medicines which affect one's endorphin/hormone level). 

Other social media captions to watch include #selfiesunday, #ootd, and various combinations of emojis. 

I hope no one is offended by this! Everything said was meant in jest! Plus, if this makes you feel self-conscious about your interactions on social media, just remember that I have a lose. 

p.p.s. I actually went through #blessed pictures on Instagram to make up the list above. 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

We're Afraid of the F Word

(disclaimer- if you read my blog for the silly stuff, this isn't that kind of post!)  

No, not that F word.  I don't think it would be right to say we are afraid of that F word. Many popular movies use it like it's a pronoun. Take a walk on any college campus and you're guaranteed to overhear it in at least a few conversations.

The F word you're not going to hear is this one: feminist. Now, so you don't have to, I'll go ahead and say it:

- A 20-something female college student writing about feminism? How original.
- Feminism?? All that stuff was handled in the 60's!!!!
- This isn't about the other F word?...I'm bored.

Yes, I am 20 years old, and yes, I am writing on a subject that many others have before me. Still, there's a reason that I, and the many before me, keep writing about this. But we'll get to that.

Back to the title of this article: We're Afraid of the F Word. And by the way, when I say "we" I mean girls like myself. Or women. Whatever you want to call us almost-basically-kind of adults who aren't guys. In my opinion, males aren't comfortable with this word either, but that's an issue for another time.

What does this F word even mean?

A) If you are a feminist you support equality between the sexes in our communities, whether they be in the local, national, or international sphere.
B) If you are a feminist you are an outdated, overly aggressive, probably lesbian who can't learn to leave well enough alone.

I'll admit, I just presented an extreme case of those who are not feminists and most likely offended some of you who think more along these lines:

"Of course I support equality, but I don't need to be a feminist. I like things the way they are. I'm not being oppressed and I'm a woman. So why bother getting all upset?"

The above statement contradicts itself, stereotypes women, and assumes an apathetic approach to real societal issues. Sound harsh? Well you should know that I have been the person thinking, saying, and supporting that very statement, so allow me to explain.

Contradicts itself: If you want there to be equality, then you don't need to be a feminist, you are a feminist.

Stereotypes women: You may not feel oppressed, but there are others that do. Many women who are the primary caregivers, single mothers, tomboys, homosexual, victims of sexual assault do feel oppressed because they are female. And there are, unfortunately, more I could add to that list. It is a disservice to other women if we assume that if we are not a victim then no one is.

Assumes an apathetic approach to real issues: Sexism is happening in the US. It's not always (but still is sometimes) something we can fight in a courtroom.  Many of the changes we need need to happen one person at a time. It's got to be a change in the way we talk about each other and to each other. Who is doing the victim-blaming, and who is calling who a slut? Who is telling who that a tough, hard-working, career minded woman is not feminine? If we're honest, the answer can often be "Me" or other women.

I did not become a feminist, but realized I was one all along.  A college professor of mine asked me if I was a feminist and I said no. She then asked me if I supported equitable rights between men and women. I said yes. After I connected a few more dots in my head, I realized that I was one of those terrible F words.

I told you earlier I would say why it is important (if moderately so) that I write this. It's important because I am not only 20 years old, but I am 20 years old, a Christian, born and raised in the southeast, and I love dresses. I also grew up playing with dolls, am heterosexual, and cry more than the average person. My hometown holds a special place in my heart and I do not resent my college campus nestled in the suburbs of North Carolina. I was raised by a father who has a career, and a mother who stayed at home and I loved it. All of this is meant to show you that you can be a feminist as you. The F word doesn't have to be so scary.

Be careful though, being a feminist as you entails allowing others to be feminists as themselves too. It's amazing how this attitude frees you up from all that stereotyping and generalizing. All of a sudden, that girl who only wears combat boots and t-shirts, and that girl who seems to live in the classroom (soon to be office), and that girl who loves another girl, well, they're not just feminists, they're feminine too. What it means to be female is so much bigger than one type of woman. 

Again, I don't mean this as an attack. Everyone has a right to their own opinions and beliefs. I don't expect you to be any more compromising than I am.

Finally, just for fun, I am including a little feminist manifesto of my own. It lacks proper research, authority, and, probably, intelligence, but it's how I understand being a feminism. Thanks for reading!

I am a feminist because I believe that there should be equality between the sexes. I believe that women are consistently stereotyped by societal expectations that are unfair and restricting. I believe that to treat a woman like a sex object is wrong. I believe that there is a culture of victim blaming concerning sexual assault that is not properly recognized or handled. I believe that often the discourse of our media, our educators, and our friends supports the vocal suppression of what is, in reality, a diverse and capable female voice. I am a feminist because, even if I only change the way I talk about women, that matters. Feminism is not a war on men, but a fight for women. 

p.s. You might be an F word too...

p.p.s. Some other people's thoughts on this issue

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Insta-Advice for the New Year

By Caroline Drew

The holiday season comes to a close tonight, but don't turn off your cameras just yet! 

New Years Eve will round up the 2013 holidays and as one final gift to you this year, this reporter has reached out to the one and only Gina Michaels. Michaels is a renowned Instagram expert, known especially for her work with holiday Instagrams. 

"There's never a more important time to pick a filter," reads the tagline for Michaels's consulting firm MerryHappy Instagram. 

"MerryHappy Instagram succeeds because it's the only company of its kind. My clients are hungry, hungry for guidance, and I'm there to feed them. I'm always there," said Michaels in her New York office with a slightly uncomfortable level of intensity. 

Michaels went on to reveal that she's currently working on a new project: a self-help book. When asked if this publication would render her consulting firm essentially useless, the question was ignored. 

Michaels was kind enough to share an exclusive look into her new book, If You Don't Share, Who Cares (About You), here in this article. Enjoy these excerpts from her chapter on New Years Eve Instagrams. 

CHAPTER 9, All That Glitter is Instagram Gold

It's New Years Eve and people should know about it. Like I've said in earlier chapters- if you don't post about holidays on Instagram, how else would your followers know what day it is? Follow these tips to start the year off with a bang (and 100+ likes)!

1) I Spy a New Year: All NYE instagrams must include at least two of these items: champagne bottle, champagne glass,  20__ glasses, confetti popper, noise maker, and sparkly dress

2) Festive Filter: Avoid filters designated for other holidays (i.e. Earlybird and Christmas, Hudson and President's Day) and stick to NYE favorites: Toaster, Lo-Fi, and-- if you feel up to the challenge-- Inkwell. 

3) Cheers to Being Popular!: Want to make your followers jealous in a passive aggressive way? The ultimate "I'm at a party and, oops, you're not here" post is one featuring you and the other guests holding your glasses up in the air together. Make sure to include candid laughing and do not forget to tag those in the post. This way, any sad lonely followers can actually see who is more popular than them. 

4) Hashtag Hazy: Don't be afraid of the blur option tonight. If you want to convey your slight, but not too heavy, NYE buzz I strongly encourague use of the blur. It gives off a fun, carefree, drinking vibe that guarantees some double taps.

5) Auld Lang Video: If you're a fan of the Instagram videos, tonight is your night. Don't waste it on popping bottles or stumbling around in your glittery heels. No, wait until the countdown to midnight. This countdown will fit easily into the 15 second limit (hello, just 10 seconds!) and will truly ease your transition into the new year.


- If you're at home alone, do not post an poor-me-post of you and your cat wearing festive hats from the year before. Pity likes aren't likes at all. 

If You Don't Share, Who Cares (About You) will be available this March in stores near you. 

(p.s. I really, really hope everyone knows this is a joke. happy 'gramming friends!)

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Where in the World is Caroline Drew

Well. Well, well, well. How to begin this post, where to start, hmmmm...

It's Saturday, December 14th. According to my schedule, I am home, still asleep in my own bed. My mom picked me up in Atlanta last night and though I was sad to leave Prague, it's nice to be back in Alabama. 


Sorry about that, but like the KLM airlines, I enjoy a good surprise. I am not at home, asleep, or in my own bed. But Caroline if you aren't home...then...where are you? I am still in Europe, actually. This continent wasn't quite ready to let me go. But let's not get ahead of ourselves, this journey (or lack thereof) began yesterday morning in Prague...

  • 9:35 am: Leave my dorm behind and travel to the Vaclav Havel international airport. 
  • 10:00 am-12:00 pm: Reminisce about the semester in Prague, cry, eat airport food, buy trashy magazines, cry some more
  • 1:00 pm: Find out our flight to Amsterdam is 50 minutes late. OH NO. 
  • 3:00 pm: Board flight to Amsterdam, pray that the flight to Atlanta will also be delayed
  • 4:00 pm: Pilot announces who will miss their connecting flights. ATL flight is the last one read. Accept that the world is a cruel place. 
  • 4:30 pm-7:30 pm: Alongside Kirsten, Kelen, and Alex, discuss options with the employees of KLM airlines. Book 4 separate flights, and 3 different hotel rooms. Offered a complimentary overnight pack including, but not limited to, a toothbrush, t-shirt, socks, and razor (score!). 
  • 8:00 pm: Arrive at the elegant Ibis Hotel. Retrieve free food voucher at the Caribbean Restaurant (note: the Caribbean should maybe consider changing its name to the more accurate "Middle School Lunch Room" as the food was hard to define and all the cool kids sat at the corner table).  
  • 9:00 pm: After being told the free drink voucher only works at the Caribbean, decide to buy ourselves a real drink at the fancy "we're not stranded passengers" bar. Receive dirty looks from other patrons. 
  • 9:30 pm: Realize it is Friday the 13th. Understand irony to the fullest. 
  • 10:00 pm: Retreat to our rooms to watch a movie. 
  • 10:15 pm: Fall asleep. 

8:00 am: Wake up, put on the same clothes from the day before and head back to the airport BECAUSE TODAY WE WILL GET HOME. WE WILL. WE WILL. WE WILL. WE WILL. 

My favorite part of yesterday happened at the KLM transfer desk. 17 of us were attempting to reroute ourselves after missing our flight to Atlanta. A midst the tired voices of travelers trying to get home and those of weary employees who clearly have the worst job in the world, came this exchange: 

"Is that really all you have?"
"Yes I am sorry, sir. We can get you to Paris tonight, but it will be a middle seat." 

A middle seat??? He's not an animal!!! Have some common decency KLM!!!

And now, I sit here in the Amsterdam airport, and it's really not that bad. I have The Office to watch, Bridget Jones's Diary to read, and chocolate to eat/OD on. 

If I don't make it back to the States, send your questions to KLM airlines. Be aware that they will delay your question for about an hour, then cancel your question, ask if you would mind holding your question for the night and then try figuring out an answer for your question tomorrow night. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Drew Family Now Owns a Sword

The rumors are true. My family came and went from Central Europe without any arrests or serious injuries. High five! 

What? Those weren't the rumors you were thinking of? Let me clarify: I did not mean to make you think that that girl was pregnant, or that that couple broke up, or that we all secretly talk about how we don't like you when you're still in the room by referring to you as "Cindy" instead of your real name. Those are all just rumors (gahhhh Cindy is sooo paranoid...).

In Budapest we toured churches, synagogues, and national monuments. We went to a wine tasting and sampled local specialties. My favorite part, however, was swimming in the famous Szechenyi baths. Essentially large outdoor pools, the baths are kept full by nearby thermal springs. Locals and tourists come to socialize, play chess, and enjoy the warm water. 5 members of my family really liked the baths. 1 of us wasn't too happy...let's take a trip back to that night and listen to some of the conversation, shall we?

Caroline: This is fun! Look at those old guys playing chess.
Mama: I just loooove being so warm. It is bitter here y'all. But this is niiiice.
Caroline: I wonder if I should go ask to play
Mark: Tillman don't splash me. 
Tillman splashes Mark
Mama: Mmmm so hot. I'll tell you somethin', if I lived in Hungaria, I would come here every day. 
Mark: It's called Hungary, Mama.  
Mallie: Tillman! If you're going to splash him don't get it near me. 
Caroline: Me either. And hey, I don't really know how to play chess, one of y'all should go ask to play with those old people.
Dad: This is the most disgusting thing we've ever done. 

Perhaps you've read a previous post of mine "Emotions with Dad." If so, you already know that my father can be like a used butter knife: blunt (does that metaphor work? Yeah, it worked. It totally did). Something you may not know however, is that he's not the biggest fan of germs or large masses of people. 

Now remember that we were in a warm pool full of hairy European men wearing speedos.  

Other quotes from Papa Drew include: 
"I feel like I'm catching diseases standing in this."
"Caroline, tell your mom you want to leave."
"Why would people come to this thing?"
"Alright gang, time to go." (said after 5 minutes in the bath)

Don't worry, we stayed for an hour and a half. Thanks Dad!!

Even better than exploring Budapest was having my family in Prague.  Getting to share this city with them meant a lot to me, but because you'd rather hear about our weirdness than my sappy emotions (whatever, I don't want to know about your feelings either) I'll focus on that. 

Tillman bought a sword. A full length sword. He thought it would fit in his suitcase. Guess what? That thing wouldn't fit in a golf bag. Now I get to figure out how to ship the weapon home. Which means I get to walk through Prague with a sword. Fear me peasants!!

I took my family to NYU open mic night where we all got to feel bad about how non-musically inclined we all are. One of the acts wasn't musical, though. It was my friend Nathan doing stand up and he was great. He was also pretty...colorful at times. My mother's response: "I thought he was cute! But I didn't get all of it. I'm going to have to ask your dad what some of that stuff meant later."

The boys ditched their khakis, sperries and polos for dark jeans, converse-esque shoes, and hoodies. My dad, on the other hand, sported his ever fabulous snap-away pants. You know, the kind that can become shorts with just a tug on the lower leg? Sorry for being a fashionable family. 

I really should get back to studying and if I write my Goodbye Prague post right now I'll get tears in my hot chocolate. And you know what they say: "There's no use crying into good chocolate*."

They used to say "There's no use crying over spilled milk," but realized this was an erroneous statement unless you're some fancy rich person who buys milk in bulk. "Did you see Dave's fridge? Packed with milk. He must be doing well."