Halloween in a Hurry

If you are like me, you love Halloween because it is one of the few occasions you don’t have to buy gifts for someone or bring some kind of dish. You just dress up and have fun. This holiday doesn’t require one to be with family, and encourages one to just go out and have fun, fun for all ages from trick-or-treating in the neighborhood as a kid to doing a Halloween pub crawl as an adult. It has everything from costume parties, contest, to random events.

If you are still like me, then whenever Halloween comes around it either sneaks up on you, or you just do not have the money available. So, how does one dress up for Halloween when it sneaks up on you, and you are on a budget? Listed below are a series of budget friendly ideas.  I tried gathering the most unique and fun ideas I could find.

 

It’s Raining Men

  • What you will need:
  • Umbrella
  • Set of male portraits
  • Scissors
  • String
  • Tape

 

As the pictures suggest it is simple, just cut out the faces and tape string to the back of the portraits. Hint: If you have fishing wire you can use that instead of string. Next you open the umbrella and tape the other end of the string to the edges of the umbrella.

 

            Group Guess Who

  •             What you will need:
  •             Cardboard/ thick poster
  •             Scissors
  •             Markers
  •             String
  •             Tape
  •             Red or Blue Shirt
  •             *Paint Optional

Make a frame out of the available poster or cardboard by using the scissors. In this case a sturdy white poster would work best. Next you can paint or draw the ‘Guess Who” title and name onto the frame. Hint: If able, you can print the title and name out, and simple cut and paste it to the frame. Measure the inside width of the frame with the string, cut it, and then tape it to the inside width. This step will allow the frame to balance on your head without having to use your hands. Next pick a plain red or blue shirt to wear and you have your costume. You can try to style your face to look like a genuine Guess Who character but you could also use your name and go as yourself. It’s Halloween so it’s all up to you, and this idea is great for groups.

Brawny Man

  • Red Plaid Shirt
  • Blue Jeans
  • Brawny Paper Towels

Alright guys, this one is for you. If you have a red plaid shirt then all you need to do is buy a thing of Brawny paper towels and there you go. All you have to worry about is losing the paper towels throughout the night, but if someone happens to make a mess, then you are a man prepared.  Hint 1: If you lose the paper towels and have an ax at hand you can be a lumberjack. Hint 2: If you lose the paper towels and add a tool belt then you can be Al Borland from Home Improvement.

            Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn

  •             Black or White Dress
  •             Jewelry
  •             Make-up

Both of these lovely ladies are great by themselves but this is also a great idea for that best friend costume. It’s simple if you have a black or white dress already on hand. Just add a few accessories, do your hair and makeup and you have an elegant costume ready to go.

Jelly Belly Unisex

  • Clear Trash Bag
  • Printed Jelly Belly Logo
  • Clear Tape
  • Scissors
  • Multi-color Balloons

Start with inflating the balloons. Then take the Printed Jelly Bean logo, cut and paste it to the front of the clear trash bag. From their cut yourself some arm and legs holes, reinforce the holes with tape. Hint: If you want a more secure hold tape to yourself, but I recommend wearing leggings/pants and a longer sleeve shirt. Once the clear bag is secure begin putting the balloons inside the bag. Once that is complete fix the top to where it looks good and is comfortable.

            Emoji Time

  •  Yellow Poster
  •  Scissors
  •  String
  •  Markers
  • *Extra Paper
  • *Glue

This is a great solo, group, and unisex costume. And it requires minimum work. Have a yellow poster, cut it into a circle. Take the markers and color in the desired emoji face. Hint: If you do not want to risk discoloration, then color the pieces of the face on plain white paper, and then copy and paste it onto the poster. Once the face is complete poke two holes at the top of the face and thread the string through. Essentially, you are going to wear the face as a necklace. Not the string on both ends secure with tape. Make sure to wear all black underneath and you are good to go.

Darla the Fish Killer

  • Ziploc Bag
  • Nemo Cut out
  • Tinfoil
  • Makeup
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Hair Ties
  • Clear Tape

The amazing thing about this costume is it really doesn’t matter what you wear clothing wise. You cut and paste Nemo to the outside of the Ziploc bag fill with water and stick to the side. Next you add freckles to your face and put your hair up into high pigtails. After that, you take the tinfoil and roll it up and curve into a circle. You can curve the tinfoil around the ears and wear it similar to how you wear glasses, or you can pin the tinfoil to your hair. That’s it. That is all you have to do it and everyone will realize who you are imitating.

Ace Ventura Pet Detective

  • Blue Jeans or Khakis
  • Hawaiian Shirt
  • Hair Gel
  • Note card
  • Markers
  • *Sunglasses

Another simple costume for the guys. The biggest thing you will need is a Hawaiian button up shirt and we all know someone who has one of these shirts. You will need hair gel to give your hair that swirl, but other than that all you need is the note card and markers to create the Ace Ventura business card. Hint: Yes, he is seen with red pants but blue jeans will work fine. The message still comes across clear. Sunglasses are optional.

Sims Character

  • 2 pieces of green stock
  • Wire
  • Head Band or Hat
  • Glue

This costume is great for those who really don’t want to dress up, yet still want to be part of the part. You can dress like your normal self and put on the diamond and you instantly transform into a sim character. The costume is then enhanced if one takes on the role of a sim character. The plumbob diamond can be homemade. If you are like me and you are a visual learner then the DIY tutorial is down below.

Identity Thief

  • Hoodie
  • Name Tags
  • *Sunglasses

Grab your favorite hoodie and the name tag labels from Wal-Mart. Write random names on the name tags and stick them all over the hoodie. For an added effect try different writing styles or get your friends to help you out. Sunglasses are optional.

 

My challenge to the faculty of Texas A&M University-Texarkana.

I challenge you to dress up like Hogwarts Professors. So, call upon your inner wizard or witch and let us all have fun this Halloween. TAMUT community, feel free to dress up like Hogwarts students!

What’s Up With Kpop?

Korean Pop, better known as Kpop, is popular music from South Korea. Kpop has also had a solid following all over the world since the 90s.  One South Korean everyone might be aware of is Psy, who created the Gangnam Style dance craze that went viral back in 2012.  Since his insane popularity the South Korean government has giving the Kpop industry money to continue its work in the hope it would put South Korea on the map and encourage tourists to come to the country.

What makes Kpop unique is that it has managed to incorporate all genres of music from rock, pop, and metal, to jazz, rap, and R&B. It has taken all these genres and made its own brand. It’s not strange to hear several genres played in one song. Kpop also features boy and girl bands alike that can have up to 10 members. Unlike U.S bands Kpop bands tend to have several more members and they start training really early. They are taught to sing, dance, and play instruments at a young age. They compete with thousands of other  teens just as skilled. They practice 12 hours a day, including time for studying, because education is important in South Korea. They attend Kpop private schools where one 3-month semester can easily cost $1,000. Keep in mind that they can start as young as 6 and at roughly $4,000 a year, by the time they reach 18 a private school can cost up to $48,000. Even then they are not guaranteed to be in a band, but with their extensive study, they are still able to go on to college and get well-paying jobs.

Kpop has opened its arms to all genres and culture. It takes the best parts and makes it unique. The Kpop industry has been marketing its music and videos to be globally friendly, with 44% of song titles in English, and a lot of the choruses and hooks in these songs in English as well.

Below are three different songs. Which one is your favorite? I’d love to know why.

This song is to showcase a very popular boy band as well as how this expensive music video has found a way to incorporate different genres. This song is likely a party song as it encourages people to dance. “Put your hands up, like you got your country back. Jump up, like you would sprain your ankle. Shake, like you have a seizure. Sing a song together everyone. Ringa-linga-ring Ringa-linga-ring”

 

This song is to show that Kpop bands can have numerous people and yet they find a way to showcase everyone almost equally. This chorus is essentially telling a guy that if he likes me very very very much then call me. The rest of the song goes on to describe how the girl doesn’t know if the guy is serious about her or not and she wants to know either way, all while her friends and family call the guy a snake.

 

The song is called crazy and it fits. By crazy, she does not mean insane, she means more like wild. In the song she states she is crazy, everywhere she goes it’s crazy. Don’t fight the crazy, embrace it.

Stressed

Stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances. Basically, we have all been under stress at one point or another. Do you know what happens to your body when it is stressed? “Stress tends to be a physical response, so when stressed, the body thinks it’s under attack and switches to fight or flight mode. In doing so, it releases a complex group of chemicals and hormones such as adrenaline, cortisol, and norepinephrine to prepare the body for action.”[1] Stress causes physical actions with “blood being diverted to muscles, and pausing unnecessary bodily function such as digestion.”¹ Essentially, stress messes with your tummy which explains why some people get so stressed they can’t eat, they overeat, or overall feel sick to their stomach.

However, not all stress is bad, occasionally when you are faced with a situation where you need to fight or run stress comes in handy as it decreases blood in the brain to put it into your muscles. This allows one to think quickly without over thinking and if one needs to run that is a split-second decision. By chance, if, one needs to fight that is also a split-second decision.  Stress in these situations is how we survive. Stress also allows us to meet deadlines and teaches us to perform under pressure. Stress in itself is a motivator in these cases.

What happens “when our body goes into stress in inappropriate situations?”¹ With blood flow going away from the brain at this point it leads to being unable to think straight. Which, as some of you know it only causes ones stress to become worse. By staying in a state of stress for extended periods of times it ends up being bad for our health by increasing blood pressure and sugar levels. By staying constantly stressed it can lead to depression, anxiety, sleep problems, getting sick easily, skin conditions, weight problems, and even problems with memory.

Some signs and symptoms of stress overload can cause many wide-ranging symptoms like; being more pessimistic than usual, moodiness, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, loneliness. Some physical symptoms are headaches, getting sick frequently, aches-and-pains, nausea, and upset stomach. Stress can even cause one’s behavior to change, where you are unable to relax, nervous habits like biting your nails and pacing become worse. You smoke and or drink more than normal. You end up eating too much or not enough and the same goes for one’s sleep. You either sleep too much or not enough.

Okay, so you are stressed. Now what can you do to relieve some stress? You can become more active. By being active, it helps drop one’s stress level.  Talk it out, don’t be afraid to talk to someone. By communicating with another person, it releases a hormone that relieves stress.  Engage your senses, listen to music, watch TV, take up a hobby like painting, anything that keeps the senses busy is a fast way to reduce one’s stress. Try getting a better night’s sleep because that can do wonders to one’s stress. But ultimately know your body and know how it works. Try to become aware of when it is stressed and then learn how to relax. You know your body better than anyone else, so it’s up to you to take care of it and learn how you handle stress.

[1] What is Stress? (2017, January 04). Retrieved September 06, 2017, from

What is Stress?

Posted in A&M

Unsung

Leira Moore

Have you ever noticed how clean the rooms look as you enter them for class or how pristine the bathrooms and halls are? If you have then thank a custodian, because they pick up after you when you accidentally leave trash or paper lying around. When I first came here to study I was actually rather surprised at how friendly the custodian staff is. It’s not just one particular person but the whole group are great people, and I guess you have to be when you find empty cups laying everywhere, including bathrooms.

Major props to the cafeteria staff as well. They make your food! They put in the hard work to feed an army of students and staff everyday! Some workers are up here really early and others really late. They take the time to prepare for an event that the school is hosting, all while the food is delicious. So remember to thank the staff for cooking you a meal so you weren’t left hungry.

Other very important people include ground workers, security, book store, library, and advising staff, and tutors, for they give students everything they need to make their time at the campus easier and more successful. They take their time to help you with your needs and often enough if they can’t help you they give you other ways or options to help yourself. They are knowledgable in what they do and one cannot forget to thank them either.

Ultimately I just wanted to bring light to all the people who come together to make an experience here pleasant and rewarding. I wanted to remind people to be thankful and polite to everyone no matter who they are. So, as the semester comes to a close I would like to wish the students good luck on finals while wishing everyone to have fun and a safe summer break.

Posted in A&M

Is Frozen More Than What It Is?

Leira Moore

We all love and adore Disney, even when we’re in college. Most of us are now closet fans. As for the ones that don’t hide in the closet they have begun to dissect Disney, and how the characters relate and tie into each other. Some theories have made a lot of sense and make one wonder what Disney is truly up to.

Some may already know about Disney’s hidden Mickey where they subtly put a Mickey somewhere in every movie, or how Disney pays tribute to older movies in the new ones and vice versa. For instance in Beauty and The Beast, Belle said her favorite book had to deal with a man disguising himself as a prince, far off places, and daring sword fights, which alludes to Aladdin having come out a year later. Disney also put Scar from Lion King as a rug in the movie Hercules. When, in fact, Lion king came out a few years before Hercules. Yet, is there something more than Easter eggs or cameos?

I believe so because in the Disney world most of the characters tangle into each other’s lives in some way. The most obvious is family ties. Lets start with Belle and Beast. The ongoing theory is Jane from Tarzan is the granddaughter to them. That explains Jane’s accepting nature of Tarzan and why the tea set from Beauty and the Beast appears. To make it a little more interesting, the director who did Tarzan also did Frozen and he does imply that the parents did not die on the boat and suggest that those were Tarzan’s parents. To recap Tarzan is the brother to Elsa and Anna. There’s more. Frozen ties into the Little Mermaid by implying the first ship that’s sinking into the ocean was Elsa’s parents’ ship. Of course someone created a map that shows it wasn’t improbable for the ship to find its way into the Little Mermaid territory. Another common theory is Elsa’s parents were on their way to Rapunzel’s wedding when the ship sinks. In Frozen, Elsa’s coronation is three years after her parents death, but is it a coincidence that Rapunzel comes out threes years almost to the day before Frozen? Perhaps, but it creates a connection when Rapunzel and Flynn arrive to Elsa’s coronation. It is also hinted that Rapunzel’s mom, is sibling to one of Elsa’s parents, whether it’s the father or mother is up for debate.

To expand the universe a little more, Ariel’s mother in the Little Mermaid supposedly makes a cameo appearance in Peter Pan and gets murdered by Captain Hook. In the second Little Mermaid, it states that Ariel’s mother is killed by pirates. Also, common knowledge puts Ariel and Hercules as cousins considering Ariel is the daughter of Poseidon and Hercules the son of Zeus, while Zeus and Poseidon are brothers. The ties don’t stop there considering at the end of the movie when Ariel is marrying Prince Eric, the King and Grand Duke from Cinderella, are also in attendance. At that time in history it was common for royalty to invite other royals to major events. This also explains why Cinderella makes her cameo appearance in Frozen. Everybody who is anybody attended Queens Elsa’s coronation, even Lumiere and Cogsworth attend which hints that Belle and Prince Adam, also known as beast, are in attendance.

Of course these are just a few fan theories about the family ties of the characters and how their lives tend to mix and mingle often. However, as all theories go, one can always poke holes and find faults. For those like me who grew up on Disney, it reveals that Disney has grown up with us. We have grown up to decode and analyze the movies and continue to look for Easter eggs and cameos. Ultimately, who knows what Disney is truly up to, but it is fun to reminiscent and explore interesting theories other fans have discovered.

Quelf

Leira Moore

Have you ever played Quelf? If not, then Quelf is an “Obey the card” type of game. Quelf starts out like the usual board games where you choose what color board piece you want, and everyone begins at the start. Everyone then takes turns to roll a die, and the one with the highest number gets to go first. The board has a series of spaces that spiral into the center to reach the finish line.

All the spaces alternate between the colors red, yellow, green, blue, and purple. Each color card has its own set of comedy and rules. Red is the “Scatterbrain” card meaning the card holder starts a conversation and he or she must go around the table making sure everyone contributes to the topic. The topic keeps going around the table until a person repeats an answer, says the wrong answer, or takes too long to answer. If the person cannot contribute then they can get penalized 1-3 spaces depending on what the card says. When this card is in play, it doesn’t take long until the players begin to run out of answers. An example of a red topic is “Stuff that stains”; possible answers are wine, BBQ sauce, mustard, grease and so on. After the red card is played and one person has paid the penalty then the die moves to the next player and they roll it and so on.
The yellow cards are the “Stuntz” cards. These are more action based and will require you to do an action, whether it’s a thumb war or to lick your own elbow. One card even requires you to suck your thumb in silence and start rolling the die. When you roll a “3” shout, “Get off my land!” in your best chipmunk voice. The penalty for that particular card is three spaces.

The green cards are the “Quizzle” cards. These cards are not played, instead testing your thinking capacity. The questions tend to be in A B C D format. If you get it wrong, you pay the penalty. You have a chance to move one space ahead if you get the bonus question correct. One of the funnier questions is: which of the following plays was not written by William Shakespeare? A) The Tempest B) Othello C) Taming of the Shrew D) Romeo and Quelfiette E) All’s well that ends well. If they got this particular question wrong, it’s a two space penalty. However, they have a bonus question worth one space. The bonus question says “Oh that’s too easy you say? Well, then tell us which of the remaining four plays is not a comedy. The Answer is B) Othello is not a comedy.” The green cards are more like brain teasers, but sometimes the answer choices are comical. Let’s say they land on a blue space.

Blue spaces are pure evil at times because the consequences don’t stop adding up. The blue cards are the “Roolz” cards, and they are divided into three sets. Global Roolz affect all players-some examples of the global rule is every time a person laughs they must snort like a pig. So, it goes without saying that when one person snorts someone else is going to laugh and snort leading to a fit of laughter from everyone. Another example is no one is allowed to talk unless it is their turn and if they talk they move back two spaces. Next is the Talking rule which affects only the player that drew it. An example is whenever the player makes eye contact with another they must say “I have you now!”, Another funny one is if someone else starts laughing the player must say “I command you to be quiet!” The last set of Roolz is the action rule, which can require a person to sit on their hands for the remainder of the game or could make someone be it. When that card is in play anyone who touches this person takes the penalty and then becomes it until another action rule comes into play. These three simple rules are hard to follow and conclude your turn.

The purple cards are the “Showbiz” cards, and they are very similar to the yellow cards. The purple card can require a person to do the chicken dance or sing Kumbaya. One of the many comical cards in this series is the one where you are a news anchor. Without laughing report in your most serious voice the shocking news of your mother’s underwear catching fire in the dryer. If you laugh, you go back two spaces.

I wasn’t too excited to play this game at first because I was not about making a fool of myself but it has quickly become one of my favorite board games. I have friends and family members that are not afraid to make fools of themselves, and when everyone is embarrassed, it makes it easier to be a little silly. With most board games the more people who play, the better the game is. I will say that I have played this game several times, and I don’t think we’ve made it through all the cards yet. This game is fascinating because it has a way of pulling people out of his or her shell, while allowing others to really get to know them and even laugh at good naturally. I recommend everyone to try this game. It is family friendly and is great for those stay in, low-budget, nights. So, one night grab the game, a couple of friends, and have fun. You can buy this hilarious game at Wal-Mart for 20$. This game is full of crazy stunts and questions that will have all ages laughing until tears are in everyone’s eyes.