SUNSPOTS | What Music Helps You Study?

Okay, I’m going to assume you’re behind on your work. Way behind. Whether it’s your desire to succeed or your fear of failure driving you forward, you’re going to need some tunes to listen to while you study. Here are some recommendations from Sunspots and friends.  

“One day, I just went through Spotify’s chill/study genre and copied like 20 playlists worth of music from there.

AN APPLE A DAY | To Floss or Not to Floss?

In an ideal world, flossing would be a part of everyone’s hygiene routine. At least that’s according to the American Dental Association. Sparks are flying, however, in regards to the actual effectiveness of flossing and whether it’s needed. For those of us taunted by the everlasting question “Do you floss every day?” at the dentist’s office, this debate needs a resolution. Generally, brushing and flossing helps remove plaque, the sticky film on teeth that can cause cavities.

WHITE KNUCKLES | A Window Of One’s Own

A frequently unkept resolution of mine is to detox from social media, in particular on days like March 8th, International Women’s Day. This year, my newsfeed was stained with posts like artless and dark graffiti, policing the way in which the day should be celebrated, pointing out the obviously achieved equality, asking with dissimulated wit why there isn’t an International Men’s Day. I decided to write a post with the intention of answering this question. But I am not going to simply say that it is Men’s Day every time that a woman doesn’t feel safe, is judged based on her looks, is asked to change clothes, works the same job for less money, is always assumed to be the nurse and never the doctor, is cut-off mid-sentence, is prevented from deciding of her own body, is told to smile, is criticized for both covering and baring her breasts, is called crazy / moody / emotional / fragile. I won’t go through all of that (but I just did!


The Sun hired me as a politics writer but my blog is called “Politics & Stuff” so I’m technically allowed to write about the “Stuff” part! Here’s a food review of Hai Hong!! First, a little about the restaurant: Hai Hong is a family-owned Asian restaurant on 208 Dryden Road in Collegetown that’s been in business for 21 years. I will be reviewing 6 dim-sum foods based on 3 criteria: taste, presentation, and the “wow-factor”. 1) Water

Taste: Tasted like water

Presentation: In a nice glass so it couldn’t have been tap water

“Wow-factor”: Wow!

SUIT DU JOUR | The Imagination: a Vehicle for Time-travel

If you could go back in time, who would you want to meet? And why? Whether you think about it religiously or not, there is a historical figure from the past who has significantly molded your present. We are shaped by the people who precede us and these people guide us to our destinations, no matter how subtle their presence may be in our minds. If I could go back in time, I would love to meet Helena Rubinstein– the woman who pioneered what is today called “make-up.”

CULTURALLY SHOOK | Contemporary Love in the Time of the Chainsmokers’ “CLOSER”


I have inadvertently heard the song “Closer” so many times that sometimes I hear it even when it’s not being played. What I once took to be a constant in my life, an allegedly reassuring acoustic verification of my ongoing physicality—my heartbeat—has been aggressively replaced by the song’s superficial, Day-Glo, Capri Sun beat. In a sense, I admire the song’s ambition, its desire to aspire higher—apparently, permeating the airwaves is not enough for “Closer.” It wants to extend itself into new psychological realms, infiltrate the cerebral networks of the adolescent masses, leak its toxic sugar into every crevice of our collective consciousness until one day suddenly we are not living our lives anymore—we are just living in the imagined idyllic lifeworld of the song, intangible figments residing in the corporeal actualization of the self-obsessed chart-topping hit. No longer will we be independent autonomous beings — we will exist only in relation to this aural “simulacrum of human feeling.”

Maybe this thread of self-reflection is what makes the song so popular—maybe the reason it has been re-re-replayed is that it arguably can be perceived as a reflection on universal human feelings that are difficult to directly acknowledge. Maybe converting these difficult truths into fruity electronic beats is how we tacitly learn to confront them.

CULTURALLY SHOOK | We Don’t Sleep Anymore

I want to dissociate. Split myself into two bodies, break myself apart into two corporal entities. It would be a twisted ode to nuclear fission, except instead of dividing the nucleus of an atom I would just be dividing myself. Just imagine! I could exist in two places at once, think two thoughts at once, do two things at once.

KESTENBAUM | The Art of Letting Go


To let go is to be free. It is to completely detach from societal expectations and latch onto what you expect for yourself. It is the ability to separate the things that matter and the things that do not. The art of letting go is allowing yourself to figure out who you really are, what your voice and  true calling are in this short life that we all lead. How often do you feel at peace?

WHITE KNUCKLES | Ode to Concentration

A few days ago, I experienced the nth-to-last first day of school. Cornell was stunning on that Tuesday, Ho Plaza was crowded and the clock tower immortalized, the sun shone and the green was so bright it seemed to defy any memory or expectation of snow and white ice. I have quite a taste for goodbyes, but others I like to keep short. And now I am writing about beginnings – mine started with an end. I will have things to say when I look back on these years, I will have things still to check off from my list, and our campus will be giving back the light it is absorbing now.