4 Things You can do to Stay Alive until Summer

Funny drawing, of courseWell, the obvious first thing you can do would be to read this blog. I mean, I doubt we’ve ever lost a reader, having fewer than 200 so far, so statistically, if you read this blog, you won’t die.

Or maybe it’s that statistically, since we haven’t lost a reader yet (I think), everyone is more likely to die until someone actually dies. But since I want you to read this blog, let’s pretend that my imaginary friend sacrificed himself for our statistical chances of survival.

However, it is going to be tough from now until summer. Spring Break’s over. Snow days are hopefully over, unless your weather is really messed up (or you live in northern Canada and are reading this on you icePad or icePhone). Weekends, well, that’s barely even enough time to procrastinate from doing your English homework, let alone math and science homework.

So, in the interest of losing no readers this spring, I’ve compiled a list of tips scientifically proven to have no effect whatsoever on anything but what you might have for breakfast tomorrow morning (don’t ask me to explain; this gets complicated).

Get Enough Sleep

Sure, we’ve written about sleep a lot, but the fact of the matter is that if you actually need to read about sleep before you can sleep, you probably aren’t going to get enough sleep anyway. Real teens can sleep on command. The problem is that most teens decide they should be the ones commanding when to sleep, and, to put it nicely, most teens almost have the intelligence of an advanced kiwi (I’m sorry to say, in this instance, that I meant the fruit, not the bird).

Really, to get enough sleep, you need to just sleep. Whenever you feel tired, sleep, unless you’re in class. Doing homework? Sleep. Eating dinner? Sleep. Walking your dog? What do you think the answer is? (The answer is sleep. Unless, again, you live in Northern Canada, in which case falling asleep outside means you will get hypothermia and then freeze to death or get eaten by polar bears/penguins – I forget which one of those two is the species in the North).

Stay Nourished

We all know those procrastination marathons in the late weeks of May can be draining. However, don’t let your body get you down. To stay healthy, you need lots of vitamins and minerals, carbohydrates, proteins, subwaybohydrates, antiteins, and, of course, water.

You can get the vitamins and minerals from rocks in your back yard (we all know this from science class), and all the other stuff comes from fruit, I think. To get fruit, you just need to eat/drink anything with fruit pictured on the packaging, because big corporations don’t lie. So, soda, fruit snacks (this even has fruit in its name), fruit roll ups, and fruit-y cereals are all good choices. As for water, well, ice isn’t too hard to find (especially if you’re in northern…never mind).

Stay Motivated

At some point, you’ll be questioning why. It may be why you have so much work, why school is boring, or why I never shut up. Either way, you’ll be questioning why.

To motivate yourself, remind yourself of all the good things that happen once summer starts. Wear tank tops instead of raincoats. Heck, wear swimsuits and just swim to school in all the rain we’re getting. It’s almost as good as the beach.

Look for the May Flowers

I’ll bet you’ve heard the saying, “Spring showers bring May flowers,” but have you ever actually looked for the May flowers? Do you realize how much enjoyment you’re missing?

So, what you need to do is see if you can find enough time, between sleep and eating rocks, to get to the nearest natural, undeveloped beach. Then, walk along the beach looking out towards the horizon. According to my history textbook, which has only been wrong about two things so far*, a May flower is a large sailboat filled with grim pills and pure tan people.

*The first error being the line “I bet, at some point, you asked yourself: what caused the erosion of this small but important stretch of the French coastline?” and the other error being the next line, which was, “Well, here’s the fascinating explanation…”

While there may be other things you can do (such as exercise, or relaxing, or running down the street with a big banner flowing behind you that says “HIGH SCHOOL HUMOR BLOG IS THE GREATEST!”) to increase your chances of survival, I feel that these are the main important things. Although that may just be because I am so sleep deprived that my opinions currently change faster than teenage fashions.

One place to sleep, is, of course, on the bus, but there are many other fun and amusing things to do on the school bus. Such as…well, you’re going to have to read “Wonderful School Bus Rides” if you want to find out.

3 Tips for Getting Enough Sleep to Survive until the Next Long Break

Sleep EmergencyMost of you aren’t reading this between the hours of 7AM and 3PM in your respective time zones.  That’s because, as you are surely aware, school has once again started; thus, this means that you are likely asleep for the majority of that timeframe. Those of you who do not spend this time asleep might be thinking: wait a minute, aren’t teens supposed to be awake at school?

In which case, I’ll answer that the way any competent politician would: “Well, that perception of ‘when to sleep’ depends on a number of things. The primary heart of the issue is [other political party, like the Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Rugrats, Librarians, etc.], and their partisan, anti-progress policy of [political policy that sounds bad, like the Death Tax, Anti-Free-Choice, anything with Nixon’s name in it, Anti-cute-little-animals, the Owning-a-Toothbrush Tax, etc.]. If you elect me/give me money/trash-talk my opponents, I can try to fix that.”  Did you follow that answer? No? Good.

But now that we’ve hit such a dismal patch of school, the time when the soonest break is months away (and it’s a break for only one week, not two), some of us may lose our resolve.  We may be sitting at our desks, peacefully doing our homework, when it hits us.  We’ll throw our pencils against the wall, slam our books down, and indignantly stand up, opening our mouths to make a righteous statement about our overwork-ed-ness. “This is,” we’ll begin, “unjustly-“ CRASH! We’ll fall over, unconscious from lack of sleep.

When this horrible scenario in mind, I decided it would be good if you had a few tips on how you should survive until spring break, or even summer, without giving up your chances of obtaining a high school diploma.

Sleep Efficiency

You may have heard the saying: 20% of the work gets 80% of the results (the Pareto Principle); it’s the idea that one task you do is more efficient than other tasks (getting you more results per minute spent), so you should spend lots of time doing that one task.  I, along with a panel of Nobel scientists consisting of a dead mosquito I found on the windowsill and a struggling-to-stay-alive house plant, see no reason why you can’t apply this to sleep.

If 20% of your sleep gets 80% of your ‘tired-ness’ away, then why not just sleep that 20% way the whole time? Sure, you might not be able to distinguish what portion of your sleep that is, and our scientific theory may be flawed (which is likely the orchid’s fault, assuming it isn’t yet dead; or, if it is dead, is definitely the orchid’s fault), but boy does this theory sound great on paper.  If you spent 40% of your current needed-sleep-time sleeping the 20% way, then you would get 160% of your needed sleep!

Sleep More

If you are, for some reason, unable to sleep more efficiently, then you definitely need to sleep more than you did these first few days back at school.  But how, you ask, are you going to find the time with all your homework, extracurricular activities, and devoted worship of High School Humor Blog? My answer to that is: don’t ask any more questions, or I’ll pull out my political formula again.

Actually, there’s lots of untapped time for sleep in the average day.  What about on the school bus, if you can tear yourself away from the duct tape in front of you? You could sleep during any art classes, claiming that you were “inventing a new abstract expression of creativity by creating art while unconscious, allowing the subtle nuances of your subconscious to flourish.” (Regardless of whether or not your art teacher accepts that, it’s sure to send her for a dictionary, which will buy you another five minutes of sleep, at the least). You could also sleep:

  • While your computer boots up (the only advantage to owning a computer running Windows)
  • During the time between when you hit ‘enter’ and your calculator gives you an answer
  • By pausing to sleep for one second every time you blink

Sleep Better

If you really don’t have any more time, and you can’t figure out how to sleep more efficiently, than you can still try to sleep better.  What I mean by that is, make your sleeping a better experience.  There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support this at all (even the dead mosquito disagrees with me here), though, so don’t just take my word for it: try it, because there is no way to verify if this works or not.

To make your sleeping a better overall experience, spare no expense.  Buy a $40,000 mattress made of whatever makes some people think a mattress is worth $40,000.  Take goose-down pillows a step further; slap some pillowcases over live geese (it’s like a massage pillow, kind of, except one that it honks, bites, walks, and poops).  Throw live silkworms on your sheets, essentially giving you the freshest silk available.  Build a small creek next to your bed, complete with frogs, fish, and small songbirds, to give you naturally relaxing noises (plus, you can keep your geese-pillows here during the day).

I know that before you read this, you thought you were going to remain sleep-deprived for the rest of your high-school career.  Now, after reading this, you think you are going to not only remain sleep-deprived, but slowly become as delirious about sleep as I am.  Well, that’s not the case.  I was only kidding.  We all know that there are two advantages to owning a Windows computer; I left out the great application known as Internet Explorer.

The Horror of January 1st

In a quiet and peaceful little house on a quiet and peaceful little street in a quiet and peaceful little neighborhood being occupied by not-so-quiet and not-so-peaceful not-so-little protesters, Sally woke up.  As Sally arose, she noticed the bright sun gushing in through her window’s half-open blinds.  In short, aside from the chants and riots outside, it was a quiet and peaceful little picturesque scene.  [Cue Violin.]

Sally tilted her head. [Narration] That’s odd, she thought, I don’t remember hiring a violin player to play eerie music. It must be one of the protesters outside having a recital, or something. [Cue animated clouds.]

That’s odd, Sally thought. The last time the bright morning turned to a dark and stormy night was when…that’s never happened before. It must be one of the protesters outside playing with even more chemicals. [Cue knocking.]

That’s odd, Sally thought. I thought my parents had gone to run errands and that I was home alone. It must be one of the protesters asking for a tuner for their violin.  [Cue ax.]

That’s odd, Sally thought. That’s not a very nice way to ask for a tuner, chopping down the door with a bloody, rusty ax.

So, Sally, doing what any sane actor starring in a horror film would do, opened the door.  Amid much screaming, blood, violence, screaming, violence, blood, violent screaming, someone screaming “Bloody-!,” bloody violence, and violently screaming blood cells [etc., cut out to preserve the PG ration of this blog and because I just ate dinner] the camera zooms out (all the way through the window) to reveal that the sun is once again shining and the scene is quiet and peaceful outside the house.  The violin music has stopped.

When the police arrive later, they notice that on the wall, written in blood, of course (because no good horror-film villain ever bothers with pens), is “January 1st was here.”

For those of you who are still here, and have not just left me to run around the house turning on all the lights, locking all the doors and windows, and grabbing a baseball bat from the garage, let me tell you-wait, is that a noise behind you? No, sorry, that was a mean thing to do (and we all know that that always stops us teens from pulling pranks…). I was going to tell you: this horror story (which I’m hesitantly referring to from now on as “Violence, Blood, Screams, etc. on Jan 1″ in case anyone from Hollywood wants to buy the rights) is actually a very accurate rendition for what you should be experiencing today.

If you’re an adult, then you’re thinking, “Wait, what? It’s the first day of the New Year.  It’s a weekend. What’s the issue with that?” Ohhh-hohhh.  Typical out-of-touch adult, I see, used to the year-round pattern of work and weekends as opposed to a nine-month period of extreme amounts of work.

The issue, as I’m sure you know, is that school starts in two days.  TWO DAYS.  That means a few things.

First, any homework that you had over winter break has to get done at some point, probably late tomorrow night.  It’s time to throw procrastination mode into overdrive.

Secondly, that means tomorrow morning is the last day you will be allowed to sleep past sunrise.  It’s time to go back to spending less time sleeping than you spend wondering if there will be a rapture tomorrow. (Which is why I’d recommend becoming a teen radio preacher as a part-time job, as you might get a bit of sleep).

Thirdly, there’s no end in sight. Your next major break from school is going to be in the spring, which is three or four months away.  The only reason you survived all the way to Winter Break is because of artificial substances like gum, caffeine, and sugar.  And to afford enough of that for the next three months, you might have to sell one of your holiday gifts (I hear people like to buy My Little Pony: Genetic Experiment Kits on Craigslist).  We all know that if you just ask for the best possible present, sugary caffeinated gum, most relatives interpret that as a plea for clothes.

But even during days like January 1st, when everything looks bleak, it’s important to stay positive: you don’t really have to start your enormous 40%-of-final-grade semester project on the history of the automatic toilet as it pertains to cultural diversity until tomorrow.  And if you decide to do an interpretive dance for your project, you probably don’t even have to start it until the wee hours of the morning of January 3rd.

2011: A Year in Review (Teen Edition)

A revolution in the young stages

click to zoom

As the final days of December are used up like the last bits of toilet paper on the roll, we begin to wonder what impact the past year had on our lives (just as seriously as we’d begin to wonder if we had any more toilet paper under the counter, or if we were completely out).  This leads us to the point where we realize that I should not try to create metaphors, ever.

But what were the major events of this year, ones that specifically impacted teens? I’m not sure. Neither is Time Magazine, apparently, as their list for “Person of the Year” leaves many unanswered questions. However, the good news for me, you, and Time magazine is: the internet is still around to tell us all the answers.

So, thanks to myself and the internet (but mostly a coffee-table book of every issue of the New York Times published in 2000), I give you a wrap-up of 2011, which will make sure you know everything about the year 2011 before the next one starts (because we all know the majority of this year was spent on Facebook, talking about how you spend too much time on Facebook).

Social Media Revolutions

These were also known as the “Arab Spring,” but spring has too many definitions, meaning that I would definitely have made a bad joke if I used that reference instead (such as: the remember that toilet paper metaphor? Well, an improved version of the little spring inside the holder that keeps the toilet paper holder against the frame was massively marketed on an infomercial campaign that launched this year, which used only middle-eastern actors. And if you believe that, then it is really a shame you are not a teacher, especially my teacher).

Actually, a Tunisian vendor started the whole thing by lighting himself on fire.  This spread to the neighboring Arab nations.  In Syria, for instance, the government is using tanks to put down the protesters, which, for some reason, is getting only as much coverage as the Kardashians (and I’m pretty sure turning tanks on the Kardashians would receive a higher TV rating than either their current show or news footage of the Syrian military).  In Egypt, the protesters, dubbed by Obama to be an “inspiration to people around the world” (presumably for establishing democratic government) have continued in the spirit of the burning Tunisian vendor by…burning the flag of the only democracy in the Middle East (Israel).

For teens, this means that we can now not only market ourselves to adults as expert social media marketers and instructors, but also as expert revolutionaries.  After all, many of these protests were organized on Twitter or Facebook, with messages like “lost a bet, now I hafta live in Tahrir square for a wee, #sucks. Wanna join me?” being retweeted massively.

Other Protests

For lack of a better word, and in order to keep this short, “other protests” (which I can not in any way possibly tie in to the toilet roll metaphor) also happened this year.  There was Occupy Wall Street, where groups of people decided to block traffic and hurt business everywhere in order to improve the economy for everyone (scientists are more baffled by this theory than that of the neutrino discovery). Lockouts occurred in both the NFL and NBA, because the players needed to protest the fact that they were only making enough money to, to put in ‘occupy’ terms, be in the 99% of the top 1%.

So, the next time your parents tell you that you complain too much, just remind them to be thankful that you are not opting to chain yourself to your stairwell, blocking off the upstairs, in protest.

Politics

With an upcoming presidential election, political news is never ending. As a teen, you should at least vaguely know what’s going on in the world, so you don’t make the mistake of assuming that Africa is a country (we all know it’s a city in Russia somewhere, or maybe in China).  The highlights are:

  • Congressional Resignations; those of Anthony Wiener, David Wu, and Chris Lee.  If you anagram those names, you get: “They said, ‘Chew no vile, rude NW rain.”’ I’m pretty sure that’s a secret message for something, but I guess I’ll just have to wait for another “National Treasure” movie to come out to find out what.
  • The Republicans appear to be out of presidential candidates of any quality above the rating “Walmart quality assurance” (which falls just above ‘made in china’ on the presidential candidate scale; essentially, that means that they can’t legally run).
  • Europe’s economy begins to collapse, probably because a few hundred years ago rowdy US colonists decided to stop sending over ships full of money.  Also, they dumped a lot of tea into the ocean, meaning the manufacturers took a loss (and tea is the only product anyone in the US could think of that was made in the UK, then Britain, aside from the queen.  If we’d thrown her in the harbor, though, there might not have been any royal wedding this year to spend money on).
  • Other political names you should be vaguely aware of: Hillary “Not Bill” Clinton, Nicholas “whatshisname” Sarkozy, Kim-Jung “I’m not sick” Il, Moammar “How do you spell his last name” Ghkqadhafei, Vladimir “V-man” Putin, and Osama “We Got ‘im” Bin Laden.

Mother Nature

Contrary to numerous conspiracy theorists (you know you are one of these if you have already formulated a meaning for “They said, ‘Chew no vile, rude NW rain,’” and haven’t even finished reading this yet) telling us that the world would end, it actually didn’t.  Surprise there; I thought the 403rd prediction of the world ending would be correct.

Otherwise, you have a few major events.  A tsunami/earthquake hit Japan, causing problems with their nuclear power plants (along with the rest of their society). A hurricane code-named ‘Irene’ by, as I recall, the CIA, hits the east coast.  Thirdly, various other weather events occurred, including tornadoes, snowstorms, rain, hail, thunderstorms, ‘overcast,’ and sun.

Science/Tech

The major scientific discovery this year was that of the neutrino particle’s property of moving faster than light.  All possible jokes on this subject have already been made, so let’s just say that if you could figure out how to make a gum that never lost the taste it has in the first five seconds of chewing using these particles, then you would not only be the hero of every teen, you would also probably be investigated by the FDA.

In tech news, Apple and Google occupy center stage (with Internet Explorer playing the part of a spotlight-it makes them both look good). Steve Jobs died, meaning we literally have no more “Jobs” in the US anymore, and Apple unveiled SIRI, the main purpose of which is to allow teens to be even lazier than before, when we actually had to press the screen of our phones to do anything or learn anything (“back in my day we had to plant a tree, care for it as it grew, cut it down, chop it up, build a ladder, and climb to the top shelf of your great-grandaddy’s bookshelf, where he kept the encyclopedias. Then we had to learn Latin so we could understand it.”). Google created Google+ and continued working towards world domination

Teens

Teens are largely overlooked in the news, so here are some major events:

  • Sleep studies show teens, like the bumblebee, should not be able to fly, which has been verified by dropping teens off the Grand Canyon viewing platform.  These studies also show that teens are pretty much doomed because of how little sleep they get.
  • Google opened up a social network, but to prevent teens from using it they opted for an 18+ age limit.  And this is why we need a Facebook “dislike” button.
  • High School Humor Blog (this blog) is created in February (not this month) to provide entertainment (like laughing, misinformation, and outright lies that you should laugh at while becoming more misinformed) to teens of all ages (between the primary high school ages).

Aaaaannnndd…..that’s it.  I’m sure I missed a gazillion other events, including the fact that one boa constrictor escaped from a zoo and could be on a plane right now (‘could be,’ except that they found it). Otherwise, I recommend you read gum-labels to get any information that I missed.