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With the World Cup kicking off (pun intended) this week, I thought I’d put together a list of 5 United States players to watch this month. The success of the U.S. will depend highly on their performance. Plus, you’ll be able to impress your friends with all of your “fútbol” knowledge whenever the World Cup comes up in conversation (you’re welcome).
At 35 years old, this may be Tim Howard’s last opportunity to bring World Cup glory to the United States. The long time goalie of the United States team has had a successful career in the English Premier League, having played for Everton since 2007. He has been the starter for the U.S. for many years now and has a history of playing through pain and injuries. The U.S. is going to have to keep him healthy and hope he has a strong performance if they hope to beat teams like Germany and Portugal who are both loaded with talented forwards.
Player #2: Clint Dempsey- Forward/Attacking Midfield
Dempsey is another American who has had success playing in England’s prestigious Premier league. He has played for Tottenham Hostpur, and Fulham, where he is the club’s highest premier league goal scorer of all time. He has most recently been playing for the MLS team, the Seattle Sounders F.C. on loan. Dempsey has been struggling as of late to score as many goals, but hopefully he can change that. I’m hoping he will lead the U.S. team and help them keep up with the other high powered offenses in their group.
Player #3: Michael Bradley – Midfielder
This world cup is Michael Bradley’s chance to establish himself as the face and leader of American soccer. He will need to come up big and control the middle of the field if the U.S. hopes to compete. Being the son of former team U.S.A. coach Bob Bradley, Michael has been involved with soccer at a competitive level his whole life. This World Cup is his opportunity to show the world that he should be recognized as one of the dominant midfielders in the game.
Player #4: Jozy Altidore – Forward
Along with Bradley, Jozy Altidore is part of the next generation of American Soccer players, working to establish the United States as a legitimate World Cup competitor. Altidore is only 24 years old and has already proven to be a key player for Team USA in international matches. Although he has been quiet as of late, on June 7th he scored two goals against a solid Nigerian team. Hopefully he can carry that momentum into the World Cup and provide team USA with some serious firepower.
Player #5: Julian Green – Midfield
Playing for the German powerhouse Bayern Munich, Julian Green has experience playing with – and against – the best players in the world. The 19 year old superstar actually has dual citizenship in the United States and Germany – he was born in the United States to a German mother and American father, but moved to Germany at the age of two. Lucky for America, he chose to represent the United States in the World Cup. Here’s hoping he makes Germany regret not being chosen!
Which players are you keeping your eyes on? Have you been following the World Cup?
Written by Guest Blogger, Jared B. of Vanderbilt University
I know what you’re thinking, colored mascara?! I know, I know…it seems extreme, but it’s perfect for summer! With more companies delving into this newest trend, there are colors that will suit everyone. If you’re looking for a more subtle pop color try a deep purple, if you’re feeling adventurous reach for a neon pink. It’s the easiest way to shake-up your makeup routine and bring an unexpected punch of color to your look. Here are some of the brands that I have been fawning over recently:
(Clockwise from Top Left: Maybelline Volum’ Express Mega Plush Deep Velvets Washable Mascara in Purple Velvet -$5.94, butter | LONDON WINK Mascara in Pistol Pink – $20, Makeup Forever Smoky Lash in Green – $23.00, NYX Cosmetics Color Mascara in Blue Dream -$6.99)
Have you tried this new trend? Are you loving it? Let us know!
Written by Guest Blogger, Chloe L. of Penn State
Few authors have achieved such incredible fame in their lifetimes as J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series, has. It is a feat that can be viewed as both a blessing and a curse, because after the widespread acceptance and praise for her work on the Harry Potter novels, her name has been forever attached to that series and will always be associated with its modern literary success. However, since 2012, Rowling has begun branching out, away from the young adult fantasy genre toward more adult fiction with The Casual Vacancy, a tragicomedy with themes completely removed from the Harry Potter universe. From the publication of The Casual Vacancy, it has become clear that Rowling aspires to be known for more than just her novels about wizardry and teen fiction. She believes that she is ready to move on beyond that.
But what really surprised readers and her fans in 2013 was a novel published under the name Robert Galbraith, a fictitious pseudonym to mask Rowling’s true identity as the author of The Cuckoo’s Calling. The Cuckoo’s Calling is an adult crime fiction novel published in the same year about an English private investigator who lost a leg in the Afghan War. He forms a strong bond with his partner Robin, who aides him in all of his detective endeavors as he seeks to find who is really behind a woman’s supposed “suicide”.
One of the biggest controversies surrounding this novel was the release of the truth that Rowling was really the one behind the book. Some readers were excited to know the truth, while others – like Rowling herself – wished her pen name would have remained a mask for a little while longer. Either way, when it was found out that Rowling wrote it, sales went through the roof, making The Cuckoo’s Calling a bestseller.
Rowling spoke to The Sunday Times on July 14, 2013 about her feelings upon being discovered as the author, saying that “being Robert Galbraith has been such a liberating experience… It has been wonderful to publish without hype and expectation and pure pleasure to get feedback under a different name.”
Unfortunately for Rowling, the cat is out of the bag. Everyone is already talking about her upcoming novel, The Silkworm, the sequel to The Cuckoo’s Calling, said to be released June 19th, 2014.
I got a chance to read the first two chapters of The Silkworm and found it to be quite enjoyable, picking up after the conflict from the first novel in the series was resolved. In terms of readability, the language used is very visual and hardly expository at all, suggesting that to fully enjoy many aspects of the novel the reader should have read the first book in the series (though it is not strictly required to do so). I would also say that Galbraith’s (Rowling’s) style is much more adult in nature, using profanity liberally and expanding upon themes not widely accessible to most of her previously younger audience. This novel, just like Rowling’s last, is completely intended for an adult readership and the instant fans of the already popular series after the revelations about Robert Galbraith.
From the first few pages, Cormoran Strike, the protagonist private investigator, is back at it again, dealing with various other clients that hire him to investigate crimes and suspicions that they may have about people in their lives. Although Strike is a down-on-his-luck sort of guy who was homeless for a while, living in his office and doing poorly economically, he is a very competent investigator and an insightful detective. However, he would be nothing without his secretary and loyal partner Robin who keeps him on track with all of his clients and associates.
What’s interesting about Robin and Strike is their relationship was built up quite a bit in The Cuckoo’s Calling, without spoiling any major plot points. I did find one interesting note from the first novel that may point to clues about the full extent of the plot of the second. Near the end of The Cuckoo’s Calling, Strike gives Robin a green silk dress that he bought from a dress shop called Vashti. Robin had tried it on while they were there to follow leads on the case they were investigating.I suspect his gesture may have something to do with the greater plot of The Silkworm, especially because Strike mentions in the first book that he somewhat regrets getting Robin the dress because of how that motion might look to her fiancé Matthew.
I know I’m not as good a detective as Cormoran Strike. Whether or not my suspicions about the novel are true, I am certain of one thing…this novel should be picked up by any J.K. Rowling fan and/or follower of the Robert Galbraith phenomenon. This book looks like it is going to be just as exciting and suspenseful as the last. Rowling truly strikes again with another volume of fresh content that people worldwide will be excited to read.
Written by Guest Blogger, Dan H. of Emerson College
Heading off to college in the fall is overwhelming enough without the stress of packing up your entire bedroom to take to a fairly small and shared dorm room space. Don’t fret, I am here to help! I have created a list of some “Do’s and Do Not’s” of Dorm Décor just for you.
Let’s start with the “Do’s”…
1. Bring an ottoman with built in storage space. Not only are they an aesthetically pleasing addition to any room (they can be found in a variety of different styles), but they are also highly functional. While they may look like they are just for decoration, within the ottoman is additional space for storing towels, sheets, or whatever meets your individual storage needs. Also, the ottoman is great for socializing because it serves as a perfect place for friends to sit when they come over to see your dorm! The classic black, gender-neutral ottoman shown in the photo above would be the perfect fit for any dorm room. They also offer the ottoman in purple, for those of you who like a splash of color. Snag one at select Barnes & Noble College Bookstores!
2. Get some extra lighting for your dorm room! I can tell you from experience that the dim ceiling light at the center of your dorm room is definitely not enough to keep your space well lit. With homework and reading to keep up with, friends to hang out with, and Ramen to cook for you and your roommate, you’re going to need plenty of light. String lights are a wonderful addition to your dorm room. They are pretty to look at, provide extra lighting, and are perfect for when one roommate wants to go to sleep, while the other still needs a little bit of light for staying up to do homework. You should also definitely bring a lamp for your desk; it will help for homework and provide extra lighting when you’re trying to find your bed when you get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night! Just make sure you find out if your school has any regulations!
3. Remember to grab an air freshener plug-in! This may be the most important “Do” on the list. With a few hundred teenagers constantly in and out of the dorms, they can start to smell a bit funky (re: a lot funky), and that is why it is necessary to take precaution. Not only will a scented air freshener plug-in keep your space smelling fresh at all times, but it will bring joy and relief to all of your fellow dorm mates and guests as well. It may not exactly be a physical decoration, but the delicious scent will add to the vibrant energy of the room. It allows for everyone to feel more at home and you won’t have to spray the room with Febreze a million times. After all, you’re very busy!
4. Bring plenty of storage! It is very important to keep your dorm room organized, as it is the space in which you will be living, lounging, doing homework, and keeping yourself inspired. It can be difficult to keep your college life in order when you don’t know where anything is, so that is why I recommend bubble storage crates and large stack drawers. They are perfect for storing and stacking under the bed, in the closet, or anywhere else you may find extra space. Also, bed risers are a must as they allow for additional storage space under the bed. The storage items above come in a multitude of different colors and can also be purchased from the Rutgers Book Store website (and select other B&N College sites as well!).
1. Bring a rug without a vacuum cleaner. Rugs are a very stylish addition to your dorm room and provide a home-y feel. However, make no mistake – they collect dust, crumbs, hair, etc. I love my rugs, but half way through the year, I stopped using them because I kept getting them dirty. If you are going to bring a rug, I definitely recommend bringing a vacuum cleaner (and some carpet cleaner) because you are going to have to use it a lot! However, if you can get past that, then a rug could be a great addition to your college dorm room.
2. Pack a ton of stuffed animals. While stuffed animals can seem like a cute idea, it is important to limit the amount that you bring to school. Don’t get me a wrong, I’m a huge fan, but when there are too many on the bed you will most likely end up kicking them off and onto the floor. Additionally, the stuffed animals can collect dust, so if you or your roommate’s allergies are bad, it can get annoying very quickly.
3. Steal the furniture from your floor’s lounge or common room and move it to your own room. I know it can be tempting for some of you rebellious students out there, but let me assure you that it is not worth the risk. If you get caught, you will definitely get in trouble with your RA and you will have angry floor mates who don’t have lounge furniture to relax and do their homework on. I know the common room has a lot of great tables, chair, and couches to utilize, but leave them in the lounge where they belong and use them there. However, if you do end up taking them and getting caught, make sure you compliment your housing supervisor on how tasteful and elegant their dorm furniture is and maybe you’ll get off easy.
Well there you have it, a perfect list of “Do’s and Do Not’s” that will hopefully be of much help to you all during the summer months when you begin packing and planning for school. Good luck! I know you’ll all do wonderfully now that your stress concerning packing and dorm decorating ideas is well taken care of!
Written by Guest Blogger, Ilana S. of Rutgers University
Now, you are probably thinking I’m talking about that birthday present you would receive when you were younger, the magical “Chia Pet!” Impatiently, you added water to the animal and overnight it would suddenly come to life, growing several inches of ‘hair’ or grass. Well no, I’m not talking about this fun childhood toy; I’m talking about one of the newest nutritional fads, chia seeds! Not only are chia seeds a great source of omega-3 fats; they are also loaded with fiber to keep you full throughout the day! For more health benefits of chia seeds, click here.
If those reasons haven’t convinced you enough to try chia seeds, here is a list of 3 tasty and easy recipes that you can make to incorporate chia seeds into your diet! (P.S. You can find chia seeds at most grocery stores, typically located in the baking aisle!).
Before you go to bed, simply mix all the ingredients together. Then, store the mixture in an airtight container for 6-12 hours in the refrigerator. Now there is no need to rush in the morning because your yummy breakfast will be ready to enjoy! Feel free to swap out the strawberries for ½ cup of blueberries. Also try adding 1 teaspoon of honey for a little extra sweetness! Get more details on the recipe here.
Oatmeal has always been a favorite breakfast among many. Now it’s time to take oatmeal to the next level: by adding chia seeds! Mix all ingredients into a bowl and microwave for about 1-2 minutes. Then, enjoy your scrumptious, filling oatmeal!
Getting sick of drinking the same boring glass of water everyday? Try “Chia Fresca!” Just squeeze a lime into a glass of water and stir in the chia seeds. In seconds, you will have a refreshing drink with lots of added health benefits!
Written by Guest Blogger, Kat P. of Elon University
My first job—which is the subject of My Salinger Year, my new book—was a doozy: I worked for J.D. Salinger’s literary agent. Yep, for real. She was a true grande dame of publishing, who swept into the office after the rest of the staff had arrived, swathed in an enormous whiskey mink, her eyes covered in huge sunglasses, a cigarette clasped in one slender hand. When she wanted someone—like me!—she tended to simply yell from her desk. Though she also liked to pad out of her office and come up behind me to see what I was working on. She had worked at this agency for so long—decades—that she took all of its rules and protocols for granted. Which meant that on my first day, she somehow just kind of assumed that I’d know how to do everything, from turning on my typewriter to using a bizarre, outmoded machine called a Dictaphone, from when to take lunch (and for how long) to how to properly wrap a manuscript box in brown packing paper.
Yep, you read that right. A typewriter. No, I am not a thousand years old. I am not the prototype for Peggy Olsen. I worked for this agency in 1996. By which point the world was pretty much computerized. All my friends worked in offices that had gone paperless, sitting in little cubicles, chatting with their coworkers across the room. I happened to fall into a job at an institution—for that’s really what this agency was (and is)—that felt very strong about Doing Things the Way We’ve Always Done Them. Which meant typing letters on an ancient typewriter. Which meant a receptionist answered the phones and if she went to lunch or the bathroom, they just rang and rang. Which meant stopping work at 4pm on Fridays and drinking scotch in the foyer. (I know, that part doesn’t sound so bad, right?)
My first days on the job were a bit nerve-wracking. It was so strange and disorienting, never fully understanding what was expected of me, or what had to be done when. The stakes were perhaps higher for me because of the, er, Salinger factor: I was warned, on my first day, that an endless stream of reporters, grad students, producers, and just plain fans, would call and write, begging me for Salinger’s address or phone number, or simply for me to send their letters or pleas or prayers on to him. I was warned, too, that if Salinger was to call, I was to say as few words as possible to him, to not waste one second of his time. If I slipped up in any way, the consequences would be dire.
I managed not to slip up—too much—and found, to my surprise, that Salinger often kept me on the phone, amiably chatting, but my boss still sometimes grew impatient or irritated with me, especially in those confusing early days. There was a way, I suppose, in which all her assistants blended together for her, and she simply forgot I’d only just started and didn’t yet know the—pretty unusual—office practices inside and out.
If you’re reading this right now, there’s a decent chance you recently spent a hot, humid day sitting in a folding chair, sweating through a disappointingly flimsy polyester gown, fighting to keep a mortarboard on your head while a succession of relative strangers delivered speeches on a stage you could barely see. And right about now, you’re at the mall with your mom picking out suitable attire—according to your mom, that is–for your own first job.
Maybe this job is your dream job: interning at The New Yorker, writing dialogue for Pawn Stars (that actually was my nephew’s first job; my family specializes in exciting first jobs), researching e. coli for the NIH, crunching numbers for Deloitte. Or maybe it’s simply a job, a way of paying rent and student loans and generally living in the world.
Here’s the thing about first jobs: Maybe that dream job will turn out to be less of dream than you expected—the fancy internship that mainly involves Xeroxing—or that boring job will turn out to be fascinating, will come to define your life, to define you.
Which is, I suppose, why our first jobs are so special. (And I’m not a person to use that term lightly.) Because we come to them a blank slate, open to any possibility. Because everything is new to us. Even if you abandon that first career path, that first job somehow molds the bones of the life that comes after. It turns you into a grown up. Which is not necessarily a fun thing. In fact, first jobs tend to be scary, disorienting. For eighteen years, you lived with your parents, who loved you, who wanted you to be happy, for whom you were the center of the universe. For four years, you went to college, where you formulated opinions which were taken seriously by your professors, where you stayed up late talking over serious matters—of life, of philosophy, of science—with your friends. Perhaps you went to grad school—like me—for more of the same.
And then, one day, you put on some semblance of grown up clothing and arrive at an office. No one gets your name right. No one tells you where the bathroom is or that there’s a code for it or how to get the code. No one tells you when to go to lunch or when you’ll be paid. Or they tell you that lunch is between 1 and 2, but then you realize that no, everyone actually eats at their desk, works through lunch, and you’re expected to do the same. Your boss may yell at you. Or may act like she’s your friend but then snap at you when you make the slightest mistake. Your mother doesn’t understand that you can’t chat with her all afternoon on your office phone. When you’re tired or in a bad mood or devastated that your boyfriend has dumped you with no explanation, you can’t just not show up. In fact, you still have to show up and behave like a normal person and do your work, your often tedious work. And care about your work. They expect you to care. To take care of someone other than yourself.
All this was hard for me, in all ways. I was pretty shy and I had to learn to speak up, to ask questions, to ask for help, to seek out mentors within the agency other than my boss. I also had to learn to dress properly, and not stay up or out too late, and to understand my role at the agency and in my boss’ universe, which was partly to learn from her, not just about publishing or literature, but about, honestly, how to be a person in the world, rather than a person at the center of the world. Eighteen years later, I feel this weird, complicated gratitude for her.
My first job—for all its discomfort, especially in those early days—turned me into a writer (see My Salinger Year for this to make sense), turned me into the person I am today. It made me. And if I have one hope for you, it’s this: That in ten, fifteen years, you’ll look back on your first job and say the same thing.Written by Guest Blogger, Joanna Rakoff, author of My Salinger Year Find a copy of her book here.
Need some last minute ideas for what to bring to the BBQ this weekend? Forget you’re throwing a MDW party (and all of your Pinterest-loving friends are going to be there)? Don’t fret! I have carefully crafted this short list of the most unique, yet patriotic, snacks and refreshments for you – and they aren’t even that hard to make. Let’s start off with a nice, cold mocktail…
‘MERICA MOCKTAIL – This delicious drink is simple – it’s made from Fruit Punch, blue Gatorade, and diet 7-Up or Sprite. Serve on the rocks for a tasty and refreshing treat!
For further instruction follow the recipe here.
Now, onto lunch…
THE ALL AMERICAN HOT DOG – Just your plain old hot dog on a bun…with blue mustard! Add some ketchup and diced onions and you’ve got yourself a red, white and blue frankfurter. This one doesn’t have an exact recipe, but my instincts say food dye. Be careful not to blue yourself!
If you’re in the San Diego area, check out this dog at Delux Coronado Gourmet Hot Dogs.
Let’s move onto dessert…
CUPCAKE BURGERS – O.M.G. I love these. They may make you cringe a little at first glance – totally get that. But listen to this list of ingredients: yellow cupcakes, brownies, colored frosting, and sesame seeds. I literally can’t think of anything better than a cupcake/brownie combo. Why is this not a thing? Come on, America! #comeon
Visit PardonMyCrumbs.blogspot.com for the full recipe.
SNOW CAKES – I know what you’re thinking – “Oooh, little tiny snow cones! But won’t they melt fast?” Wrong! These adorable little snow balls are actually tri-colored cupcakes! Each snow cake is comprised of a dyed cupcake, colored icing, and red, white, and blue sparkling sugar. This one looks a little challenging, but the end result is pretty amazing – AKA – worth it!
Follow along with Bakerella’s recipe here.
For more great Memorial Day food ideas, search Pinterest for “memorial day snacks”. Let us know how your party turned out (or up)!