Archive for the Health & Lifestyle Category

14 Helpful Dorm Links

Posted in Articles, College Stuff, Dorm Life, Fun Times, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Links, Tips, Web on August 3, 2009 by Jill
Photo by Brandon Cirillo.

Photo by Brandon Cirillo.

Below are some fantastical dorm links for the Freshman student- and for those of us returning to campus in the fall.

(I know. It’s been ages since I wrote a helpful post… Does anyone have any suggestions for what they’d like me to write about on here?? Let me know.)

Here are some older Kill Jill Goes To College posts to help you settle into dorm life.

I’ve always been a fan of the blog Surviving College Life. Here are 2 dorm-related posts for you to check out:

Jamie from Surviving College Life links to Apartment Therapy and I checked it out (finally!) this afternoon. And good grief, what a great site. Lots of cool projects that could easily be used in dorm rooms.

Also, Kill Jill has a new link exchange buddy: It’s got posts on all sorts of neat stuff. Here are some dorm life-related posts from that blog.


10 Commandments of the Summer Job

Posted in Articles, College Stuff, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Humor, Kill Jill, Money Honey, Student Loans, Tips, Work on July 4, 2009 by Jill

3677161984_686979cefcThe summer before I started college, I spent the summer working part-time at a local convenience store. From that experience, I wrote an article for my college blog called 20 Rules for the Convenience Store, which then went on to be published in the American magazine, Convenience Store Decisions.

Anyway, this summer I’m back at the same convenience store. And, to be quite honest, I think I’ve learned a few things. Following are 10 commandments to be followed by college students working ye olde summer job. Please add your own if you’re so inclined.

  1. Thou shalt not work too many hours. Having too many hours will usually affect how much the student loan folk hand out. Only go for a full-time job if you aren’t looking to get a student loan. (And, in that case, sucks to be you… right now. Not so much in 15 years when the rest of us are still trying to pay off our loans…)
  2. Thou shalt not work for a family member. Working for a family member can be either evil or great. It’s great when = you get to slack off and still get paid. But it’s evil when = they make you work and you try everything in your power to get fired because they’re being so mean and they won’t just go ahead and fire you already because you’re family. It’s a double-edged sword. Best thing to do is ask a former or current employee for their honest opinion of your relative as a boss. You might get lucky. Or, they might lie to your face so that you too are sucked into the Summer of Doom & Despair.
  3. Thou shalt not expect to be paid much over minimum wage. You’re only around for the summer and you suck at your job anyway. It’s laughable that you would even expect a raise after those first disastrous 2 weeks.
  4. Thou shalt not work at the same job as thy boy/girlfriend. We show a different side of ourselves at work. Besides, seeing too much of a person can be unhealthy for a relationship, especially in such close quarters. (Besides. Your co-workers don’t want to see you two making out in the broom closet. Gross.)
  5. Thou shalt probably have to wear a dorky uniform. Suck it up, kid. You’ve been assimilated into the collective.
  6. Thou shalt not spit into the hamburger of thy nemesis when they come to Wendy’s and you’re working in the kitchen. This should be fairly self-explanatory.
  7. Thou shalt not be caught smelling marshmallows by thy boss, co-workers or customers. I love the smell of marshmallows. But seeing the cashier shoving a package into her face and inhaling deeply seems to make people uncomfortable.
  8. Thou shalt pretend to love and not quit thy job at chic downtown coffee house. You may hate your job and have a knack for spilling hot beverages. But you still get tips and working as a barista looks a lot cooler than being a fry cook, so appreciate where you are and- more importantly- how you look while you do it.
  9. Thou shalt not get distracted from your job when your crush comes by. “Don’t mess up. Don’t mess up. Just try to look cool and attractive. Sure, you’re wearing a shirt with a fast food label on it but it’s cool. They respect you. It’s fine. Just don’t make eye contact and maybe they’ll go away… Crap, they’re coming over. Oh, crap. They just saw you. Don’t mess up… And there you go, spilling fries everywhere. Wow. Impressive.”
  10. Thou shalt make plans to have a kick-ass job next summer. This could include book store clerk, amusement park employee, summer camp counselor or, if you’re looking to be creative, lifeguard at a nude beach.

(Photo courtesy of quinn.anya.)

Again, I’d love to hear any suggestions for other summer job commandments. (Keep in mind, this article is meant to be humorous and not to be taken seriously. By all means, ignore what you’ve read here.)

College: Lies You Should Tell Your Parents

Posted in Articles, College Stuff, Dorm Life, Fun Times, General, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Money Honey, On Campus, Tips with tags , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2009 by Jill

Since most of us are home from the summer from college (at least for a little while, anyway), we’re likely going to hear the following 3 questions a lot.

  • So, how was school this year?
  • Get into any trouble this year?
  • So. Exactly how many drugs did you experiment with this year?

2264146874_94bff0d963Photo by Will Humes.

Obviously, telling Mom, Dad and Grandma about some stuff is OK. But the following items are things you might want to avoid when it’s your turn to talk at the dinner table. (I’m not condoning or encouraging any of the following acts. That’s for your peer-pressuring friends to do.) (I’m also not condoning or encouraging lying to your parents about everything. Just the things they don’t need to know.)

(Also, you may want to edit this list if your parents are any or all of the following: unbelievably understanding, hippies or convicted felons who continue to sell crack to support their heroin addiction.)

OK then. Here are some things you shouldn’t tell your parents when it comes to describing your year at college.

  1. Drug experimentation. Yes, maybe you found out your parents tried pot back in high school. It was, most likely, the ’70s. Not that pot is any more/less harmful than it was back in the day, but they’re still not going to be stoked that their baby angel got high once or twice (or, like, every Friday night for the past 4 months).
  2. Weekend dorm life. Living in a dorm can be fun. On weekends, there’s always a party going on somewhere and crazy stuff usually happens. But if Pops knew his little girl was surrounded by such tomfoolery (I love that word.), he would not be pleased. He’d likely get you out of there and put you in your own apartment… Wait. On second thought. If he’s willing to pay your rent, better start tellin’ tales.
  3. Your diet. If Mom knew how many times you ate Wendy’s per week, she’d throw a fit. And then your Grandma would look at your epic ass, wince and shake her head in disappointment. (What? That’s only me. Oh. Well then.)
  4. How much you drink. What would college be without drinking? A purely educational environment… with rainbows and unicorns and chocolate-covered leprechauns ‘n junk. But if they knew how much vodka made its way into your system over the past academic year (“I swear to God, I have no idea how it got there!!”), they’d be shocked and dismayed. Plus, they might stop sending you money if they know it’s not going towards groceries, but actually to Smirnoff Ice.
  5. Hook-ups. No matter how far the hook-up itself went (or which gender it was with), your parents don’t need to know that stuff. And Grandma doesn’t either (unless she’s a weird kinky old lady… ew).

And, just so nobody pees themselves or anything, here are some things (in no particular order) you might want to fess up to:

  • addictions (drugs, alcohol, porn, etc.)
  • pregnancies (yours or one you caused)
  • academic expulsion
  • hit-and-runs
  • murders
  • manslaughter charges
  • lawsuits (against you- they don’t need to know you’re suing your roommate for puking in your underwear drawer)
  • getting sued for puking in your roommate’s underwear drawer

Any other things you might want to lie about not share with your family? Let me know!


10 Tips For Moving OUT of the Dorm

Posted in Articles, College Stuff, Dorm Life, General, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Kill Jill, Links, On Campus, Residence X, Roomie, Tips, Web with tags , , , on April 28, 2009 by Jill

You’ve drank you last beer (or, in my case, margarita and glass of wine) and you’ve said your goodbyes. Summer is here, classes are over and it’s time to head back to wherever you call “home.” But packing up your stuff and getting it there can be a pain. Here are some tips to make the task a bit easier.

Photo by Dave Kleinschmidt

Photo by Dave Kleinschmidt

  1. If possible, move out in a couple parts. If your campus is close enough to home, pack up a couple boxes a couple months before the end of semester. (I realize this doesn’t help if you’re moving out now and could have used that advice months ago… but you should have planned ahead. I’m not always going to be here to hold your and guide the way, OK?!) …Now, where were we? Oh, yes.
  2. Consider renting a local storage unit. If you’re coming back in the fall, a storage unit can be handy for the items you won’t be using over the summer and probably don’t have room for anyway. (And yes, your little sister will mind if you store your futon in her bedroom, even if it’s “only for a couple months”.) If this seems far too expensive, try to share a space with a friend who also plans to return in the fall.
  3. Be very, very, very nice to the buff guy down the hall. Again, this advice could have been helpful months ago. But having a butt-load of friends who will help you lug your junk downstairs is often handy. (All of my friends have already flown the coop. Thankfully, I’m on the first floor and next to the entrance. Ha!)
  4. Be very, very, very nice to local-living friends, particularly ones with basements. Sometimes, you might have a couple boxes of stuff you don’t want to take home. It’s not enough to bother renting a storage space. If you have a pal who resides with their parents (suckers!), exchange some basement space for a pizza or a movie rental on you.
  5. Pack breakables carefully so they’ll make it home. I plan on using a combination of grocery bags I’ve been collecting all year and paper towel to wrap my breakables in. My plates, my glass cups, ceramic bowl and of course, my action figure collection.
  6. Beg for boxes or buy some bins? Tomorrow, after I get my hair cut, I plan on stopping at several stores and begging for small cardboard boxes that I can use for packing. I’ve never had to do this before and I’m really not looking forward it. In hindsight, I probably should have purchased some large storage bins like my clever roommate did. But smaller boxes have their advantages too- they can be squeezed into small empty spaces in a packed truck much easier than a large storage bin. But take your pick.
  7. Throw out as much as possible. Just like when you thought twice about bringing particular items with you when you moved into the dorm, consider what you want to take out of it.
  8. Don’t invite the whole family. If a family member is coming to pick you and your stuff up from college, make sure only 1 or 2 people come. You’ll likely need the space.
  9. Rent a moving van. Sometimes, the deed must done. I’m no expert on this, so check out this article at eHow.
  10. And remember… Lift with your legs, not your back. (Click here for more info on lifting heavy stuff safely.)

(Want to win some business cards or some brochures for your business or services? Check out this Kill Jill contest! Enter now- it’s free!)


15 Things To Do When You’re Alone In A Dorm

Posted in Articles, City X, College Stuff, Dorm Life, Fun Times, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Kill Jill, Personal, Residence X, Roomie, Tips with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 18, 2009 by Jill

It’s Spring Break for me and my fellow students at College X. So, I’ve had the dorm to myself since Roomie left on Friday. It’s been weird, not having her around… or anyone for that matter. The one only left in City X is Jaclyn and I’ve been hanging out with her quite a bit.


But I’ve also been taking advantage of the free time and space. Including some (and I mean some!) of the things on this list. I present to you Kill Jill’s List of 15 Things To Do When You’re Alone In A Dorm. (I do recommend you make sure the door is locked when you do these things though. Because you never know.)

  1. Dance. Oh, I never thought dancing could be so much fun.
  2. Use your hair brush as a microphone and pretend you’re Debbie Harry from Blondie (or whoever it is you kids are listening to nowadays).
  3. Walk around in your pajamas all day.
  4. Walk around in your underwear.
  5. Walk around in your birthday suit.
  6. Eat peanut butter from the jar.
  7. Go pee with the bathroom door open. (But only if you have a bathroom in your dorm, not a shared one with everyone on your floor. Naturally.)
  8. Stay up until 3 AM.
  9. Play music until 3 AM (unless your dormitory has rules on quiet hours).
  10. Look up porn star actors on IMDB. This is actually a fun activity I discovered this evening. (I recommend checking out Wesley Pipes and Deep Threat. Their credentials are both impressive and hilarious.)
  11. Try on outfits you don’t usually wear and model them with pieces that you wouldn’t usually match together. Who knows! You might find yourself a new look! And even if you don’t, you can always find fashionable wholesale clothing online, so check out some websites for future purposes.
  12. Read. When I’m reading, I get distracted really easily so being alone is great for reading.
  13. Drink from the container. I do this all the time so Roomie is used to it. Oh well.
  14. Watch movies your roommate doesn’t like. Watch them loud, watch them proud. Rewind them and watch parts you like over and over. Quote any lines you know. Throw popcorn at the TV.
  15. Clean up your mess. Jeeze, man. There’s popcorn all over the place and juice on the floor from when you drank out of the container. Your roommate likely had a rough couple of days without the sight of your lovely face. Make sure the dorm isn’t a huge mess when they get back, huh?

12 Tips For Students Visiting NYC

Posted in Articles, College Stuff, Fun Times, Health & Lifestyle, How-To, Links, Money Honey, Tips, Web with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 3, 2009 by Jill

No, I’m not an expert on NYC traveling but I did learn a few things when I was there recently. Here’s a brief guide for students (or anyone, really) planning to visit New York.

Photo by Paphio.

Photo by Paphio.

  1. Always have your camera on hand. Keeping it on at all times will drain the battery, but always keep it close. You never know when The Naked Cowboy will pass by.
  2. This city wasn’t built for claustrophobics. A lot of boutiques are tiny and often have lots of people in them. We walked through Rockefeller Center and Times Square and we had to just hold onto one another to avoid losing each other in the crowd. It was a little scary, especially for a vertically-challenged person like me. Not cool.
  3. Don’t be afraid of taking taxi cabs. As long as you stick with official NYC Taxis (they all have the same logo on the side), you’ll be fine. I was actually surprised at how cheap it was to take a taxi from practically one end of Manhattan to the other. Don’t forget to tip your driver!
  4. Visit Central Park. No matter what else you have planned, make some room to visit Central Park. It’s incredible. Plus, I enjoyed having a break from honking cars and tall buildings all around me.
  5. If you’re going to be walking all day, avoid buying a bunch of stuff early in the morning. I started one day by purchasing a pair of shoes, a large bobblehead figure for my mom and three Wizard of Oz movie merchandise items for myself. I ended the day with two aching arms.
  6. Even though it’s generally easy to navigate the city, keep a good map on hand. Try to get one that has every street and popular tourist sights labeled.
  7. From what my group experienced, there seems to be 2 types of restaurants in Manhattan: fast food and super expensive (on a student’s bank account, especially). Students on tight budgets might have to deal with fast food- but be sure to treat yourself with a nice sit-down restaurant at least a couple times. (Your digestive system will thank you for it.)
  8. Travel with like-minded people, especially if your schedule is tight. If you’re not really into fashion, avoid traveling with shopaholics. NYC is heaven for a shopaholic, so be nice to the museum nerds in your group.
  9. Keep an eye on your purse or bookbag as much as possible. Pickpockets love tourists as they are such easy targets.
  10. Have some sort of plan before you head to the city. Have a list of what you’d like to see, where it’s located, how to get there and how much it costs to do it. Some of the best stores we went into were ones we just came across while walking somewhere else.
  11. Cross the street when everyone else does. I read on a “Manhattan Survival Guide” that tourists should wait for the walk signs before crossing the street, even though many people will be jay-walking. This was very unhelpful. Just cross everyone else does. Otherwise, you’ll just piss people off by being in their way.
  12. Don’t be scared. Yes, New York is big, crowded and, at times, intimidating but millions of tourists go there every year and I never felt unsafe once while I was there. If you just relax, pay attention to where you’re going and have fun, NYC is an amazing place with something in it for everyone.