Stephen: Importance of Following Through

I don’t want you to read this title and think I’m talking about following through on a golf swing or anything like that. I’m going to be mostly talking about following through on things you have already set in motion.

I’ve always been one to constantly be thinking of new ideas and things I can do. Whether it be personal projects, classwork, or some type of collaboration with others, I like to engage in these opportunities and get as much on my platter as I can. For one, I highly enjoy photography and traveling around to take photos. I have spent countless hours watching videos about photography and have spent a great amount of time also researching different places to go. I am always so eager and excited to do these things, but where does it all lead to? In all honesty, not very far sometimes. There have been a few times where I have planned a photo trip and actually followed through with going out to take the shots, but for the most part it all comes to a halt before the trip even takes place.

This same principle applies to many aspects of what I do as well. For example, towards the beginning of last semester I went out to shoot a short film for fun with a couple friends. We filmed the entire thing in one evening, and had a fantastic time doing so. I just finished editing that project last week. I didn’t finish because it took me so long to work on, I just happened to be organizing some files and decided to take a look at it again. At this point I think you all understand what I’m trying to explain so I’ll stop with the personal experience and instead share a couple reasons following through is fantastic, and something that has really helped me change my ways.

Happiness. It is simple but one of the most powerful motivators. If you want to be happy, finish what you started, whether the result is bad rather than good. You’ll have a higher appreciation for yourself for being committed enough to complete something, and others will view you as a go-getter rather than a quitter. If you talked to someone about going to a new club then actually go and see if it is something you’d enjoy rather than convincing yourself beforehand that it wouldn’t be for you. If you decided to start a gym plan, set in place a proper schedule and get others around you to motivate you to keep pushing forward. I guarantee that looking back on the things you followed through on will make you smile. It has for me, and I’d like to replicate that as much as possible.

Learning. The things you can learn from following through with what you have started is invaluable. Life is all about trying new things and learning from those experiences. Sometimes loss and failure are the best teachers for learning too so don’t be afraid to put yourself in uncomfortable situations where the outcome isn’t guaranteed. Easier said than done, I know, trust me, but the more you experience it the easier it gets.

As for how I’ve been working towards following through with my own work, it is actually quite simple. I have become a pro at keeping my calendar organized. A whole blog can be written about calendars and such, but I’ll keep things simple for now. I have always kept a calendar for different events and such going on, but I was never always on top of keeping my dates organized and having my calendar up to date. This year I decided to change all of that. My calendar is one of the first things I look at when I wake up, and one of the last things I look at before I go to sleep. As soon as I hear about a possible event too then I throw it up on the calendar and work my free time around that.

I hope this short blog has provided motivation to some of you. I know not everyone deals with this same issue, but there are definitely those out there that do. Just remember, finishing what you started leads to many great things, but two that have been most important to me are happiness and learning. Now get out there, plan something, and just DO IT.




Maddie: The COM Student’s Essential Bucket List for London

Studying abroad is one of the most exciting possibilities of college. I know that when I was looking at universities as a wide-eyed high school senior, a good study abroad program was one of my top priorities. When I toured BU, I heard the story (though, it’s more of a legend) of a BU student who studied abroad 7 out of her 8 semesters here.

From then on, I was sold. I was convinced I’d be able to go wherever I desired. And though I’ve fallen in love with Boston, this summer I was able to pursue that goal and travel to London for the COM Mass Communication/Advertising/PR/ program. My experience was amazing, to say the least—but I’m sure you’ve heard that.

 Now that I’m back in the real world (because study abroad genuinely doesn’t feel real), aside from the slight teasing from my friends that “abroad changed me,” I’m feeling acclimated back into my routine after a summer of living in a foreign country. However, I have my own personal bucket list for any students hoping to hop the pond and study with our trans-Atlantic neighbors. Here are your must-do’s for if you spend your semester in London!

  1. Take a walk around the city—you’ll never know what you’ll find.

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Though you should always be slightly aware of where you are (thank you, Google maps), getting “lost” in the city is always the best way to get to know where you’re studying abroad for the semester. Since everything is new, every little shop or restaurant you see is an exciting experience. And don’t worry, the closest Tube station is usually only a five minute walk away for if you need to book it back to class.

  1. Go to as many museums as possible.

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Around 95% of the museums in London are free—take advantage of that as much as possible. London is expensive, so while you’re saving up money for your next getaway, explore some of the great museums in your free time. Some of my personal favorites? The Imperial War Museum, the National Portrait Gallery, the Wellcome Collection, and the one pictured above, the Churchill Museum (though not free, if you go through school, it is).

  1. Stuff yourself at every market.

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Whoever said England had bad food is just completely lying. Case in point? The amazing food markets you’ll definitely need to hit up every single weekend. Pictured here is the best meal I ever had, courtesy of Borough Market. Other markets like Camden and Portobello are nestled in some of the trendiest neighborhoods in town, so after you chow down on your mouth-watering street food, you can explore the area. 

  1. See a show in London’s West End.

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Before I went to London, my friend told me that I absolutely had to see a show in London. I took her advice and bought tickets to Matilda—and decided her advice was some of the best I’ve gotten. If you’re a COM student who appreciates theater production and catchy musicals, you’ll be blown away. I literally had never seen such a beautiful set.

  1. Go to Harry Potter Studios.

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Harry Potter Studios—the place for everyone to nerd out. I seriously felt like I was in the movies—and I 100% geeked out posing in front of the castle (featured above). If you ever even came into contact with a Harry Potter book as a child, these studios will still be one of the coolest things you see abroad. And if you’re a film & tv student, you’ll get to see all the behind-the-scenes work as well. Sip on that butterbeer and enjoy.

  1. Explore Shoreditch.

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One of the newest up-and-coming areas of London, Shoreditch promises the perfect night out. With endless food options and artsy holes-in-the-wall to explore, you’ll never run out of something to do when you go to Shoreditch. Make sure to check out Doughnut Time when you’re there. Insane.

  1. Relax in Hyde Park.

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Hyde Park provides the perfect break from classes. These breaks are definitely necessary when you forget that you actually had to do work when you studied abroad. It’s also one of the biggest green spaces in London, so it’s incredibly serene. Also, the Kensington Palace is right in the center—if you’re hoping to become bffs with Harry and Meghan, this is the place for you.

  1. Get out of the city for the day.

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If you need a complete nature break from the hustle and bustle of the city, try taking a day trip with a few friends outside the city and take a breather. A few of us went to the Mayfield Lavender Fields (featured above) for some stunning photos and tasty lavender scones. You can also take a beach trip to Brighton or explore some natural at Kew Gardens.

  1. Book a cheap flight to a new country.

Photo 9

One of the best parts of studying abroad in London is how easily accessible other European countries are. Some of my favorite memories of my study abroad experience were the weekend trips my friends and I took, using relatively low-budget airlines and hostels/AirBnb’s. Above is my trip to Budapest—which is also a super-cheap city, 10/10 recommend.

  1. Be a cheesy tourist.

    Photo 10

Above all, this summer is for you. So be that cheesy tourist and do everything you’ve ever wanted to do! You might not get a chance to study abroad again, or return to the same country, so take advantage of every opportunity. Who cares if that photo op makes you look corny? You can laugh about it later.

If I can offer any advice for your study abroad experience, it would be this: Soak up every moment, your semester will go faster than you think. And once you’ll leave, all you’ll want to do is go back and do it all over again!

Frank: The 6 Types of Music You’ll Listen to in College

College is a place for self-discovery, for experimentation, and for an almost deafening amount of music. Times change and with it, what you think makes for good music. Here are the Six Kinds of Music You’ll Listen to in College:

  1. The Radio Hits

You’re young, you’re fresh, you’re new in town– you also don’t know anything about music. The radio has been curating what you listen to for almost two decades, but it’s been doing the same for everybody else too. And when you’re the fifth person in a row to say they like ‘everything but rap and country’ in an icebreaker, it’s not a good image. It’s time to let go of the past and reinvent yourself. Time to listen to some new music.

  1. The Obscure

The Drake’s, Cardi B’s, and Ariana Grande’s of the music scene are too superficial for you. Music has lost its true meaning to commercialism and big record labels. Real music is the kind of music that refuses to sell out. Your music taste has become as refined and articulate as an aged cheese, but a cheese that only you and about five others around the world know about. Fingers crossed these bands you’re listening to don’t hit the big time, or else you’ll develop one heck of a lactose intolerance.

  1. The Soundcloud Rap

The Drake’s, Cardi B’s, and Ariana Grande’s of the music scene are too soft for you. I mean, you only live once so you might as well listen to the best bangers the internet has to offer. It doesn’t matter the occasion, be it studying for finals at Mugar or just trying to relax and fall asleep, the sickest of Soundcloud raps are there to keep you up and drown out all those pesky ‘responsibilities’ you should definitely be on top off.

  1. The Foreign

American music just isn’t what it used to be. I mean you’re not sure what it ‘used’ to be either, but you can say with certainty that it’s not the same. You know what’s stayed consistently good, though? All the music scenes from literally every other country. Listening to this kind of music will make you a full-fledged cosmopolitan! Sure, you won’t understand a single word being sung… But you can just feel it; you know what am I saying?

  1. The Experimental

Music composition as a whole is overrated. You’ve grown past the need of instruments, or harmonies, or appealing sounds to listen to music. Now it’s all about that subversion! Actually enjoying music is for chumps. The way music is meant to be experienced is as a chore. Listening to this music is a complete pain, but imagine how cool you’ll sound when you mention you listen to this kind of music! Nobody has to know you hate every second of it.

  1. The Favorites

This aimless charade of music types has left you tired and unhappy. Somewhere along this musical journey, you’ve forgotten who you are and what you really like. You’ve realized that for some reason you’ve been trying to impress an audience that really isn’t there. Who cares what you listen to? As long as you enjoy it, it’s good music. So listen to your favorites, regardless of what anybody else says. You’re gonna be in college for a while, might as well enjoy your time here.

Laurel: Why I Started Reading (For Fun!) My Senior Year of College

Over the summer I had a serious thought: When was the last time I read a book for pure enjoyment? I honestly couldn’t tell you. I can tell you the last time I watched Netflix as a form of procrastination, but I never read a book when I have nothing else to do. Sometimes I think it’s because with school work and the amount of reading I am assigned that it feels like extra “work” to read any more. When watching a show, you can just let your mind relax. But is that still a valid excuse to not read?

 This summer I decided it wasn’t. Something that students might not know is that we are also eligible for a library card from the Boston Public Library (BPL)! So, I decided to go to the library and sign myself up!


Another reason I have always avoided reading was because I never knew what to read. What do I like? What will I stick with and finish? What genre is entertaining to me? There are so many endless options that I could never figure out where to start.

 Luckily for me, the BPL has a shelf in the front called “Lucky Day.” It’s a shelf that the library fills with popular books, most of which have a waiting list to read. They take the books out of rotation to give other people the option to read them if it is their “lucky day.” That’s where I started.

 The benefit of the “Lucky Day” section is that you only get 14 days to read the book as opposed to the normal 30-day rental. You also cannot renew the book, unlike normal rentals. This forced me to read my books in a rather short time frame. That really got me on a roll.



 Instead of finishing my day with some Netflix, I read. I found it relaxing and a nice quiet change of pace. I went to coffee shops to sit and read. I found new parks to read in. It got me out and about, enjoying things at a slower pace than I am used to.

 It was more of a personal goal of mine, to feel more connected to something. I almost viewed it as a form of personal growth. What I didn’t expect was to tell my friends what I had been up to and realize they had been reading for enjoyment all along and had plenty of recommendations for me. One of the most helpful recommendations I got was to download the app Goodreads where you can connect with friends and see what they have read, how they rated it, what they are reading, and what is on their reading bucket list. It doesn’t get more fun than that!

(You can also scan books and find other ratings and reviews to see if it sounds like something that is interesting to you!)

Version 2

But this isn’t just to convince you to download an app or even to tell you to start reading, though you should as the famous scientist Carl Sagan wrote that there are more books in the world than anyone could ever possibly read so you really don’t want to miss your chance to read the small percentage that you can. Instead, I wrote this because the best thing I have gotten out of my new reading endeavor is the book clubs I’ve gone to, sitting on coffee shop patios bonding with strangers over the same emotions and reactions to the book.  The people I’ve interacted with at the libraries whether it be the librarian that always helps me find the book to the old woman I sat with as we read for hours. Or the deeper level of friendship my friends and I share over our book preferences and so on. Me stepping out of my comfort zone, trying something I knew wasn’t my strong point (I’m talking to you elementary school Laurel with the low-level reading comprehension) and really enjoying being unplugged and relaxed from the world and school.

We have such little time to enjoy college and the four years feels like two by the end of it. It would be a shame to not continuously try something new, whether it be something as small as reading for pure enjoyment. I hope you too find something that excites you like I have and brings you closer to the community around you as it has for me. Happy reading!

Emily: Emily’s Top 5 Commute Jams

This semester, I’m doing things a little differently. Because of a surgery in the spring, I was unable to come back to campus this fall. Instead of getting down, I’ve decided to make the most of my time at home; I’m interning at two amazing agencies in Philly and taking online classes. This, however, has created a new problem for me: the commute. Between my long drives and train rides, I have found myself needing the best pump up music to keep me sane. So, without further ado, I present my top 5 albums to listen to on a commute (or on the T or jamming down Comm Ave). 

1) Sweetener – Ariana Grande


I don’t care what anybody says, this album is amazing! If you want to feel confident before heading into work, jamming to Ariana Grande is definitely the way. My personal favorites from the album are Borderline and Successful (but also God is a Woman is a masterpiece that makes you feel like a bad b*tch).

2) Rumours – Fleetwood Mac
If you’re feeling nostalgic and dreamy, Stevie will never steer you wrong. I refuse to choose a favorite from this album. I guess you’ll just have to listen in full ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
3) Melodrama – Lorde
Again, if you’re feeling homesick or nostalgic this one really hits me in the feels. It’s perfect for a foggy drive/walk through the city. My favorites are Supercut and Homemade Dynamite.
4) Anything by Lizzo (ik, not an album)
This technically isn’t an album, but if you’re looking for a pick me up, Lizzo is the way to go. Her upbeat hits will have you skipping down Com Ave!
5) Greatest Hits – Queen Compilation
Finally, I can’t have a music blog post without mentioning my favorite band, Queen. Literally any song you listen to will put you in a good mood. But, if you don’t have time to listen to their entire body of work, any Greatest Hits compilation will have you dancing and smiling all the way to work.
BONUS: Podcasts
I also love podcasts!! If you’re looking for a good podcast to get lost in I recommend How I Built This or Invisibilia! 

Carlee: Why FYSOP is the Perfect Way to Kick Off Your Fall Semester

 Move-in weekend can be a lot all at once.  You run into yellow carts all over campus, a ton of social interaction (which can be overwhelming for an introvert, or an ambivert like myself), the search for time to decorate your room and settle in, the task of memorizing your schedule for fall classes that will start in a couple days, hello and goodbye hugs everywhere- it’s definitely a lot at once.  If you had a summer that was more on the chill side (like I did), jumping right back into the hustle and bustle of BU can be rough.  If you’re looking to get acclimated to campus life a little earlier, and you have a passion for social justice, I have a solution for you…


For those of you who have never heard of ~FYSOP~, the acronym stands for First-Year Student Outreach Project, and the program is conducted through BU’s Community Service Center annually the weeks before the fall semester kicks off.  This year was the program’s 29th FYSOP, and as a sophomore, it was my second year participating in the program.  Last year I participated as a first-year student, and this year, I volunteered as a staff leader and had a group of freshmen of my own.

 FYSOP is truly everything that you could ask for from a program (if you find it’s for you); it introduces you to new friends who are just as enthusiastic and passionate as you are, it enlightens you on all of the problem areas of Boston, and it allows you to give back to our city as a thank you for welcoming us as students.  The theme for FYSOP this year was: What’s your story?  So basically, the theme was storytelling… how COM is that?!  We love storytelling in both COM and FYSOP, so those two worlds collided for me.  The program encouraged us to have conversations with the residents of Boston, learn their stories, and discover our own.  FYSOP got us all thinking about our stories and experiences that we bring to BU- they’re all different and unique, and that’s what makes our student body special.

If you’re reading this as an incoming freshman, I could not emphasize the benefits of FYSOP more.  The program teaches you everything that you’d wanna know about your new city and it gives you a solid group of companions to dive into your first semester with, as well as a few mentors (your staff leaders)!  If you’re reading this as a continuing BU student and have ever considered getting involved with FYSOP, I highly recommend that you apply for a staff leader position this winter.  If you’re interested in both leadership and community service, FYStaff is perfect for you.  I had the best experience as a staff leader; my fellow co-staff were so incredible and kind, and they are truly some of the best at BU.  My group of first years were so much fun, and they bonded right off the bat.  The days of FYSOP are long ones, but the people you’re surrounded with make it so worthwhile.

No lie, as I am writing this in the GSU, I hear the table next to me talking about how much they loved FYSOP and how great their staff leaders were.  They’re even talking about a FYSOP reunion that they’re attending this weekend.  You’ll hear all over campus about how FYSOP can bring such light to students’ lives, and they aren’t wrong.  I understand that FYSOP may not be for everyone, but for those who find themselves ready to devote themselves to a program of such integrity and morality, this could be a home for you.

Yes, there are a lot of obnoxious cheers to pump all of the students up, and yes, you may have to find the motivation to take on the long days, but the program truly is the best way to kick off your fall semester, and it is a ton of fun.  Some even say that FYSOP is a cult on campus, but I find that it is a happy, open-minded cult. J

 The program set me up for my sophomore year here at BU and in COM, as I know feel motivated to understand the stories of those around me, escape the “BU bubble” and explore Boston more, and strengthen the friendships and connections that I made from freshmen year.  FYSOP could do the same for you, too!


Becca: Why My Fall Goals Matter to You

The fall semester is one of my favorite because it’s time to reset the focus on meeting goals. Even if you spent your summer working or taking class comparable to your fall semester, as I did (although in Australia), everyone is back on campus together to take classes, work part-time jobs, participate in extracurriculars, and try to strike the work-life-school-friend-extracurricular balance that’s rare. So I take time every fall to set some concrete goals for myself. However, it is hard to set goals that are really meaningful, so I am willing to share my mine with you guys so we can all have a successful semester. If you’re already inspired, this Fast Company article is my favorite guide to create an attainable plan. I encourage you to write your goals down in a visible place that you will see daily to reconnect you with your vision.

But, if you need some examples or are just really nosy about my life below are my goals. This is not only helpful for you, but for me because now everyone knows them and will keep me on my toes. Enjoy!

  1. Read for enjoyment every day.

I don’t know about you but I grew up a reading fiend. I would read after my bedtime and risk being caught by my Mom.  However, as I have gotten older reading has become something to stress over for class. Well, this semester I am determined to take back the fun in reading. Once a day, I am trying to set aside some time to read a thriller, a sci-fi mystery, or a romance novel. Even books I have to read for literature class can fall under this category if I find myself enjoying them. I can talk about the scientific studies that accompany reading novels every day, but really you just feel a little better after some good book time.

  1. Find fun ways to move my body daily.

As you will see a majority of my goals are taking things off my chore list and making them something I look forward to. Exercise is no different. We all know we should be doing it daily and making it a habit while we are young. But no rulebook says exercise is thirty minutes on the treadmill (it actually began as torture machine) and not dancing with your roommates or participating in an intramural league. I want to recommit myself to love the body I was given and all of its talents instead of using it for my next Netflix binge. (or Hulu, because I just started Handmaid’s Tale. Amazing.)

  1. Take personal relationships very seriously.

My friends mean the world to me. I can count on them to fulfill any role in my life, and I would do the same for them. Lately, I have been putting effort into my close relationships with my best friends, leaving acquaintances and new companions in the dust. This semester I am committing to be a better friend to those in my life. Whether that means grabbing lunch with someone in the GSU (when I’d rather watch Netflix) or just commenting something nice on new Instagram posts. We forget most people have their own lives with their own problems and can often use an extra dose of compassion from their fellow humans. And remember, when you put good in the universe, it comes back for you.

Just for fun, if I still have your attention, I’m going to list the rest of my goals that you can adapt to fit your own needs. What works for me, may not be what your focus is. Set a goal and commit to it.

  1. Figure out job plans for the next semester
  2. Tell people honestly how I feel
  3. Actively listen to everyone (including professors!)
  4. Have a conversation with one new person a day
  5. Shut my phone down for a while (not including class!)
  6. Learn to forgive my family, my friends, and myself


Carly: The Death and Rebirth of the Romantic Comedy (Relative to my Own Experiences)

I’m sure I speak to many film majors (and non-film major movie buffs) when I discuss the air of authority kids assume when they first discover the art of film.

When I first fell in love with movies, I became a Wes Anderson junkie. I spoke constantly of his organic storytelling and unique aesthetics, and I shamed my friends for being shallow when they insisted on seeing Divergent instead of Grand Budapest Hotel (yes, I was that much of a film snob). As a result, the more I expanded my film knowledge and discovered a community of other cinephiles, I began to scorn the conventional romantic comedy. I scoffed at girls who loved movies I believed contained no depth, and I saw myself as superior because I didn’t waste time watching “feel-good movies”.

There were some exceptions over the years, including Crazy, Stupid Love, Amelie, and She’s The Man. But for whatever reason, the only movies I insisted on seeing and watching had to be either dark and pervasive, quirky and experimental, or deep and provocative.

And yet…at the beginning of last year, I suddenly found myself pining for a good dose of romance. I wanted to watch two people fall in love and I wanted to watch two lovers share an emotional connection.

And thus began my secret binge – it started with trailers for rom-coms both old and new; then I found myself actually queuing up rom-coms on my own time. What was I doing, wasting my time watching What If?, a 2011 rom-com that lost close to three million dollars and starred Daniel Radcliffe and a pre-The Big Sick Zoe Kazan? Why did I repeatedly watch the trailer for Before We Go, Chris Evans’ 2014 directorial debut that received a whopping 21% on Rotten Tomatoes? Because these movies made me feel things. Even if they made me feel more lonely, even if they enabled me to quietly pine for a character in my own life (for whom, yes, I am still secretly pining), they still enveloped me in feeling. I couldn’t get enough. I rewatched classics, and I searched long and hard for indies.

All the while, however, I kept my new interest private. I didn’t feel comfortable enough asking my friends to binge rom-coms with me (how stupid and pretentious is that?), and I felt weak if I admitted in my film classes that the most recent movies that had made me cry were Moonrise Kingdom and/or Wall-E, or even worse, that I cried just watching the trailer for Mamma Mia.

But now it appears as if I wasn’t the only one who missed romantic comedies. As it turns out, quite virtually everyone wanted them back, a development that surfaced with the widespread popularity of Crazy Rich Asians.

Of course, I don’t mean to discount the fact that Crazy Rich Asians primarily served as an important piece of representation for the Asian-American community, and that it will no doubt pave the way for non-white actors who deserve to land roles other than the stereotypical best friend or sidekick. But I also think the movie was a success because it was such a damn good love story. It was so SATISFYING. It made me CRY. It made my FATHER cry. It was so enjoyable, and heartwarming, and it felt good knowing everyone around me similarly loved it.

The revival continues as well with To All The Boys I’ve Ever Loved Before, a Netflix rom-com featuring budding stars Lana Condor and Noah Centineo. I absolutely lost my mind over To All The Boys; I fell madly in love with both male characters and I never wanted Lara Jean to leave the screen. I loved the story and its characters and quirkiness and I loved watching the tale unfold (and yes, I now exclusively refer to Noah Centineo as Peter Kavinsky, and I assume he’ll live on as that character for a good majority of his career).

Yes, romantic comedies can be cheesy, and corny, and unrealistic, and they definitely hit an all-time low in the 2000s, when studios used big ticket stars to generate income on an awful script (i.e. How Do You Know circa 2010, or All About Steve circa 2009). But I finally think the industry is learning how to make them work — with equal representation and diverse stories, and well-developed characters and plot lines, no doubt.

I’ve come to the conclusion that, as a society, we need rom-coms. We need to believe in the idea of love, and watching others experience the trials and tribulations of falling in love is a method of catharsis. We need to leave our own realities for brief periods of time to fall in line along characters as they reach their happy endings, if not for our own satisfaction then at least to hold on to the slight chance that we too might find such a love in our own lifetime. We need to share the laughs and the tears and the emotions with our friends and family, and we need universal love stories to help connect with strangers, with acquaintances, with budding friends. Rom-coms might just be the comedic relief our own society needs in order to survive this incredibly intense and upsetting time in the world. And so I eagerly saw Mamma Mia 2 its opening weekend, and I felt no shame in listening to its soundtrack for a week straight afterward. And yes, I cried after Love, Simon and The Big Sick. I saw La La Land four times. And I have tickets to see Juliet, Naked next weekend. Because I love rom-coms. I really do.

And now, I leave you with Vanity Fair’s most recent list of top 25 Rom-Coms. Invite your friends over. Bake some brownies. Enjoy.

Tyler: Legitimize your Ideas: Aly & AJ

“You need to know how to defend your ideas with confidence, even if that means digging yourself into a hole.”

It was the first day of class senior year when the Media Money Trail course instructor, Professor Jodi Luber, established this objective for the semester. She encourages debate, even if you’re aware that you are wrong, for the sake of knowing how to argue. It’s an important skill for any professional in a creative field: how do you legitimize your ideas? If you’re pitching an idea and there is an unexpected question or criticism comes, you must know how to address it.

When you think about it, this is a pretty good skill for everyday life. When you have an opinion or theory, what can you do to defend it? Let’s take this example that is my personal favorite. Are you ready?

Ex-Disney Channel stars-turned-pop duo Aly & AJ are vampires.


Yep. Believe it or not, I think that they are vampires. And I’m going to defend my opinion to you, readers.

  1. Alyson and Amanda “AJ” Michalka were practically A-List celebrities in the mid-2000s. Think: Cow Belles, Phil of the Future, some recurring roles on daytime shows like Passions and General Hospital, NOT EVEN to mention their ultimate stardom with their Insomniatic and Into the Rush albums. But, where did they go post-Insomniatic? Simple: the grave. Their retreat from the spotlight lasted years. As a ruse, they sometimes popped up in throwaway projects like Hellcats and Silicon Valley, but who really cares about that? They just wanted you to think that they weren’t dead. Truly, there is a stark contrast between who they were and who they became.

alyandajinsomiaticWhat a dreary album cover for what was probably the last time they were seen alive

2. In 2015, Aly returned to the small screen via the CW series iZombie. The series centers around newly-minted zombie, Olivia, who uses her eating habits to absorb the memories of murder victims and solve their deaths. Creepy? A bit. Aly plays Peyton, Olivia’s (living) best friend. The connection is just uncanny. She’s in a show about dead people, but she isn’t dead? Seems like a diversion where she can point fingers elsewhere.

alyizombieTaken from

3. Recently, Aly & AJ have emerged from their slumber together. Their EP Ten Years reintroduces them to the music world with a rejuvenated sound. Yeah, I bop to it. It sounds nice, and I can definitely say, “We stan!” But think harder. What does “ten years” even mean? Ten years since what? Their deaths? Probably. Things get even spookier when you listen to their hit, “Take Me.” Check out these lines:

I know that you would want it

If I could sink my teeth into you

They are literally talking about biting somebody. Their music video also confirms the suspicion. Check out those sharpened teeth:

AlyfangsTaken from Vevo music video of “Take Me“.

4. This summer, my friend Jess and I had the pleasure (or doomed misfortune) of seeing Aly & AJ live at the Paradise Rock Club. It was a transformative experience. Great banter, great tunes, and lots of dancing. At one point, Aly commented on their tumultuous careers: “I feel like AJ and I have lived nine lives!” Honestly, Aly, maybe that’s because you have.

jJEb7ziXSkWPSHTXDjD47wA poor quality photo of a high quality evening.

I feel as though I have some irrefutable evidence here. Try to come at me! Perhaps I have dug myself into a hole in the process of this post… but what kind of hole? Notice my obsession over Aly & AJ aligns closely with that of a vampire’s minion. I was within close proximity of these two goddesses. Maybe there is a small chance… just a tiny one… that they have turned me, too, and the hole in which I lie exists in your local cemetery. Watch out when you’re traversing Commonwealth Ave late at night, all alone…


Arianna: So You Went to Splash…Now What?

If you’re anything like I was as a freshman, your BU inbox is probably (and hopefully) cluttered with emails you signed up for during Splash this weekend. You may have signed up for a couple of them just to win a free T-shirt, and some you might’ve just put your email down because your friends or roommate did. I remember being pretty overwhelmed at my first Splash, because there are so many different clubs and organizations out there, and all of them are trying to get your attention. At the end of the day, the idea of narrowing everything down to a very small handful of clubs can be very daunting.

Unfortunately for me, I actually only ended up going to a few of the meetings, and didn’t really stick with any clubs my first semester. In the thick of everything, that actually didn’t occur to me–I signed up for BUTV10 and went to the trainings, but I only sporadically showed up to shoots after the training ended. I was afraid of over-committing my time, and ended up with such an excess of free time that I ran out of things to do almost constantly. The tricky thing is, it’s very difficult, if not impossible, to get involved with clubs after the initial buzzing of the start of the semester wears off, because most organizations are in a routine by October.

Thankfully, at the beginning of the spring semester each year, BU hosts a Winter Activities Fair. I attended by myself, being the only person in my friend group who really needed to go. I signed up for WTBU and a volunteer group with the Community Service Center, and from my initial sign-up for WTBU stemmed an opportunity to write for The Beat, WTBU’s zine. Suddenly, my semester was filled with weekly meetings and opportunities to do stuff outside of class, and meet a ton of great people. My freshman spring was leaps and bounds better than my freshman fall, and I fully attribute that to the fact that I was more involved at BU.

Starting with that semester and throughout my sophomore year, I tried out a lot of different clubs and organizations, learned so much, and felt so much more content and fulfilled at BU, then during my junior year, I fully settled into BU On Broadway, joined BUTV10’s Bay State as a writer, and have stayed involved in the Community Service Center by doing FYSOP as a staff leader and going on an ASB trip. Because of my extracurriculars, I feel so much more passionate, driven, and capable, and I bring that into the classroom, which has helped me grow academically.

Long story short, even if you somehow ended up only signing up for 3 mailing lists, make sure you get to those general meetings and ask around about what your friends, classmates, or floormates are involved in and see if you can tag alone. I promise it will make all the difference in your first year, and the sooner you get involved, the sooner you will discover your greatest passions and meet your favorite people.

Have a great semester,

Arianna <3