Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
September 21, 2021


Hopkins is a diverse university where an incredible mix of cultures, academic interests and personalities coexist and thrive. Here is the section where you can publish your unique thoughts, ideas and perspectives on life at Hopkins and beyond.

The GRE: Is it really that useful?

In 2011, over 800,000 people worldwide took the Graduate Records Examination, better known as the GRE, as part of an effort to gain admission to graduate education programs. This year, I will be among those taking the test.

Classy or not: How did you dress up?

Halloween 2012 has come and gone. Along with it, parades of girls sporting some sort of animal ears, or dressed as this or that uniformed official could be seen meandering the streets of Hopkins and Fell’s Point. Of course, you also had your classic celebs, political figures or iconic movie characters making an appearance (or several). The high incidences of multiple identical costumes that can generally be found during the Halloween season are a testament to the fact that thinking up and carrying out a distinct and brilliant original costume, while admirable and desirable, very often proves pointless and near impossible. However, just because you can’t be unique in your costume choice doesn’t mean that whatever you put together can’t be hilarious or well done. After all, the abundance of Mitt Romneys did not detract from those particularly spot-on Romney renditions that made sure to have their life-sized cardboard binder full of woman (singular — it turns out binders can’t actually hold that many women, Mitt). It’s not so much how you dress up, but rather how you arrive. Costumes need not be unprecedented or unparalleled in uniqueness, but whatever else they are, they should be executed well.

A love letter to Baltimore and cities, but mostly Bmore

There is a lot going on this month. I could write about my Halloween, but I have nothing to say about the holiday that I did not already address last month. I could write about Hurricane Sandy, but I do not have the authority, and I would rather make people happy, and not sad. I could write about National Novel Writing Month (, but then it would sound like me preaching about the importance of writing everyday. I could write about the election, but we already get enough of that everywhere we turn. I could talk about all of these things right now by saying that I won’t talk about them.

Moonrise Kingdom: A unique movie viewing

This week I’m reviewing a recent film that received rave reviews: “Moonrise Kingdom,” directed by Wes Anderson, cowritten by Anderson and Roman Coppola. If you haven’t watched the film yet, be aware of minor spoilers ahead.

The comedic relief that Twitter can provide

You know what’s funny and on the internet? You know what else is? Twitter! For a long time, I avoided the Twitter rage that has swept up college students and weird adults. I didn’t like the idea of posting about my every thought and action. I’m not that exciting! I do a lot of boring things like cut my fingernails and eat cheesy popcorn. No one wants to read about that. But recently, I discovered a new, brilliant use for Twitter that finally got me on board and got me to register for my very own account. So what is this trend? I WILL TELL YOU:

Four hours of Bollywood film you must see

Last week I wrote a piece on what is a classic in American cinema (and cinema as a whole). This week I want to focus on global cinema, in particular a movie from the largest producer (by number of films) of motion pictures in the world: Bollywood.

The Dogwood Restaurant: Definitely worth the walk

Despite its somewhat underground location, the Dogwood Restaurant on Hampden’s The Avenue is not to be overlooked. Located below the bikram yoga studio’s giant “LOVE” sign, the restaurant is a cozy room with murals on its walls. Contrary to the common review that Dogwood’s dining room is like a cave, its enclosed underground environment gives it a warm, comfortable feel.

Amen Break: Granddaddy of Music Samples

For the past 30 years or so, musical sampling has attained a significant role in the music industry. What is sampling exactly? According to Wikipedia, music sampling is taking a portion of one recording and using it as an instrument in a different recording. Through samples, one can create an entirely different song from the origin of said samples. An example of this is Endtroducing… by DJ Shadow. Released in 1996, it has been cited by the Guinness Book of Records as the first album ever to be created entirely with samples. If you were to listen to the original material the samples come from, you would see how they do not sound anything like the instrumental hip hop and trip hop feel that DJ Shadow falls under.

The Godfather: A true classic now and forever

I’m turning back the clock a bit and examining a pivotal landmark in the history of the film industry, “The Godfather.” Francis Ford Coppola’s 1972 masterpiece might be the single defining work of his career and perhaps the most critically acclaimed film in cinematic history. Before the film was even in pre-production, studios knew it was going to be well-received (both critically and commercially). There was a fierce bidding war over the rights almost immediately after the novel was released. Studio executives and directors alike knew they had a gem on their hands.

Seeing The Colbert Report live: What it’s like and why you should do it

Recently my travels took me to the Big Apple where I was able to witness the wonderful spectacle that is “The Colbert Report.” Getting tickets is not as easy as you might think. The Twitter account Spiffomatic64 (I have no idea where the name comes from) gives you automatic updates on the tickets available for “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report.” I kept the Twitter page open in my tabs and it still took me weeks to get a ticket. You have to act really fast because the tickets are free! But I finally succeeded in getting two tickets, one for me and one for my boyfriend for the night of Thursday, Sept. 27.

What exactly is your family label?

My older sister has four children. This year Ahava, Cirillo, Alejandra and Jose will be nine, three, two and one years old, respectively. She lucked out since she has the best of both worlds, two boys and two girls. Anyways, these rascals keep us all young with their endless energy. Not to mention, they’re also the ultimate form of entertainment.

Is James Blunt retiring?

On Monday, I awoke to the news that James Blunt had retired from the music industry. “I just want to take some time out for myself,” he told The Daily Mail, “I haven’t got any plans to do more songwriting.”

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