Those Overlooked Items
Feb 18, 2005 Write an essay on this topic.
The Bottom Line If you have all these things, you and your roomie will get along better than my roomie and I do.
Living on campus huh? Luckily for me, Rutgers is a whopping 5 minutes away from my house, so I've been able to go back and forth a few times to get stuff I forgot.
You might not have that luxury though if your school is farther away, or maybe even out-of-state. Heck, if I got into Stanford and went there, I would've probably died by now from all the stuff I forgot. YOU can succeed where I have failed. You can learn from my mistaktes!
I am going to also stop writing in such dramatic language now. You aren't going to DIE if you forget these things, but you quite possibly might be miserable.
1. Shower Slippers. If your dorms are anything like mine, you sure as hell don't want to walk barefoot in the bathrooms. Ever get the feeling after a shower that you're more dirty than you were when you stepped in?
No? Well, keep it that way. $20 can get you a nice pair of Adidas or Nike "slides" that are good for the shower or when you just don't feel like wearing sandals!
2. A laptop has its pros and cons. Laptops are more likely to get stolen and often do get stolen. Simply locking your door when you're not there will keep it safe, but you'll be amazed how many doors end up being unlocked. Roommate went to the bathroom but you have to go to class? Do you lock him out or leave the door unlocked and your laptop suspect to robbery? Whenever that happens, I just choose to be late to class. Better that I get lower grades than get my laptop stolen!
Laptops also make it harder to get work done in the library. You're going to bring it to type up something, but there's just so much other stuff on your computer to distract you. Music. Movies. Games. And if you have a Centrino laptop, there's AIM to distract you too! (A college kid's nemesis, especially around exam time.)
However, if you take care of your room, a laptop is a sweet thing to have. If you really need to get work done, it's convenient to be able to bring your computer anywhere. I'd say around 50% of college kids seem to have laptops. It's not a necessity, but definitely something you want to look into.
I'm pretty happy with mine, check it out...
hp Paviliton zt3280
3. Laptop Lock
Laptops, Xbox's, PS2's are very commonly stolen in dorms. No, not by that kid who hates you. By that kid you don't know and is planning a 5-man operation. I'm not kidding, my friend got his laptop stolen (though they left my PS2 alone) and they weren't the only ones. So lock your door when you're not there and even when you're sleeping (you won't always wake up if someone opens your door). A lock is the last line of defense. Buy the best lock you can.
Oh, and if you're taking that laptop into college, write down that serial number somewhere. I'm going to do that right now.
Okay, maybe this is not necessary, but you need some kind of music device and this is the best one. Why? You're going to be spending a lot of time waiting for the bus, waiting for class, and in a big school like Rutgers, sometimes you will be in a class with not even one person you know. It seems that 40% or so of Rutgers students have iPods and the other 60% smoke during down-times.
Also comes in handy when your roommmate snores really violently...
You always need AA batteries. Unless you're a Luddite. Throw in some AAA's while you're at it.
6. Ear Plugs/Noise Cancelling Headphones
I don't know how well those headphones work. But ear plugs are handy. Need to review stuff RIGHT before a test? It's going to be loud in that lecture hall with everyone pretending to know what's going to be on the test and telling each other. Use the ear plugs. Roommate snores? Earplugs.
As in Tylenol, some antacids (that dining hall food....), Excedrin, etc. But by far the most important drugs at school are Dayquil and Nyquil. Use Nyquil only if you know you don't have class early the next day. But you already knew that.
95% of common college ailments can be treated with Dayquil. Someone in your hall is going to have a cough and it WILL spread. (Or in the case of my building, someone had a full-blown respiratory disease. Almost the whole building came up with some kind of cough).
You need a stereo or computer speakers that are louder than your roommates. When he's blasting that gangsta rap or that top 40 fluff, you have to show him who's boss and blast that Norah Jones and Elliott Smith. I recommend establishing musical supremacy in the first two weeks. It comes in handy.
Here's what I used to establish supremeacy in the Subwoofer Wars of 2004:
Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
9. Nice Headphones
In case you lose that musical supremecacy battle.
Don't even try to be cool. You need one. To carry books in, yknow?
Get a North Face one if you want to be like everyone else. I have a North Face myself, but that's only because it was the cheapest backpack I could find with a laptop compartment!
11. Alarm Clock
And please try to wake up on time. Don't be a roommate that hits the snooze for HOURS while the other roommate is trying to sleep! My roommate started doing that and now I do that too! Horrible!
Put it out of reaching distance. So then you have to get up to turn it off.
If you don't turn off your alarm after it's still going off for 30+ seconds, your roommate reserves the right to turn it off. Then you can miss class. Oh, and on that note, whenever you REALLY REALLY need to wake up for something (a test or interview, for example), tell your roommate so he can wake you up in case you can't.
Rooms here have lights, but there's only one per room. If you and your roomie want to co-exist when one is sleeping and one is awake, you'll both need little lamps on your desks. Enough light to read/study/waste-time-on-AIM, but dark enough for your roomie to sleep.
Well, this isn't an exhaustive list. You still need towels, a toothbrush, etc. But these are the most overlooked things, I think. If you have all these things, you and your roommate will get along, and life will be just great.
It's funny I don't even have all of these...Don't be like me!
And of course, in case you forget something, bring lots of money! You can buy it all at the campus store (but for a higher price). Good luck!
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