The Bookbyte Blog
<img class=" size-medium wp-image-2670 alignright" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/grandpa-christmas-sweater.jpg?w=300" alt="grandpa christmas sweater" width="300" height="200" /> Alright, I'm calling it: ugly Christmas sweaters just aren't funny anymore. Some have rung the death toll for this Christmas trend long before me, but now it's time to put the final nail in the coffin. What started out as a small-scale holiday event where kitsch-lovers could comb through the racks of thrift stores and estate sales for the most horrendously ironic of Christmas cardigans (think: bright pink sweaters with puffy-paint kittens and Christmas trees) has been ruined the way most fun things are: by stores trying to monetize a trend. From Urban Outfitters moody models trying to look sexy in oversized sweaters with gold sleighs to the NBA - yes, the NBA - making their own ugly Christmas sweatshirts printed in team colors, here are the worst offenders we could find.
<img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-2602" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/girl-reading-book.jpg" alt="girl reading book" width="540" height="360" /> Goodreads recently asked the question: What do men and women read when it comes to books? What is Goodreads, you ask? Goodreads.com is a website for users to track, rate, and review the books they read. Users can participate in book club discussions, follow their friends, create "To-Read" book lists, and read reviews from other users. Goodreads took the top stats of 40,000 of their most active readers to see what the sexes are reading. Here's their collected information in a cool infographic:
Google's search engine algorithms are getting smarter. Great, right? What if the trade-off is that we're getting dumber? Is it beneficial to find immediate answers through a quick Google search? Not if we're getting too lazy to ask the right questions.
<a href="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/bookbyte-study-time.png"><img class="alignright size-medium wp-image-2591" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/bookbyte-study-time.png?w=200" alt="Bookbyte Study Time" width="200" height="300" /></a> Holidays and finals don't mix. Between shopping for presents for loved ones, working part-time jobs to pay for presents for loved ones, DIYing presents for loved ones since you don't make enough to pay for presents at your crappy part-time job - let's just say it can be difficult to find enough time to study for finals. If you're anything like me, finding time to study is only half the battle. Fighting procrastination and trying to retain everything from what little study time you have can be an unending struggle that results in late nights and dark under-eye circles. That's where the focus maneuvers come in. From plugging in your ear buds and listening to classical music to getting out of the house and into a coffee shop or library, most students seem to have some study habit they pull out when they need to get serious. Read on for some weird study habits students swear help get them through finals. Who knows - they might help you out this holiday-finals season.
<a href="http://atlanta-restaurantblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Uber-driver-mobile-app.png"><img class="alignright wp-image-2575" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/310px-car_with_driver-silhouette-svg.png?w=300" alt="Uber driver " width="229" height="192" /></a> Services like UberX and Lyft have turned out to be a boon for many a person looking for safe transport from a bar at 4 a.m. Or for people needing a ride from the dentist's office when the effects of nitrous oxide are still wearing off. With their prices often being lower than what a taxi service offers, these driver-finding apps are even more beneficial for students without wheels of their own. If you've never used UberX or Lyft, here's the basics: Open the app and select your location, then a driver is sent over and you're texted when he/she arrives. When you get to your location, you hop out (no need to pay cash - the fare is automatically charged to the credit card on file), and you leave feedback on a 1 to 5 scale. The thing is, while you're rating your driver, your driver is rating you right back.
For a large group of trick-or-treaters and Halloween partiers each year, stumping fellow fiends with their amusingly tongue-in-cheek costume is even better than candy. From pop culture icons (like <a style="color:#8956c7;" href="http://www.blogcdn.com/www.pawnation.com/media/2013/10/wrecking-ball-pug-510x600.jpg" target="_blank">Miley and her wrecking ball</a>) to '90s movie classics (like <a style="color:#8956c7;" href="http://www.lobshots.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/ace-ventura-costume.jpg" target="_blank">Ace Ventura: Pet Detective</a>), there's always at least one costumed comedian at the Halloween party dying to see how many people "get" their oh-so-clever disguise. My fave funny costumes are the ones based on puns. Each year I see more brilliant costume ideas than the year before. Below you'll find 15 of the best punny costumes on the interwebz (as judged by me). And the best part is many of these costumes can be whipped up with stuff you have lying around, or with a quick trip to your local craft store.
[caption id="attachment_2519" align="alignright" width="231"]<img class="wp-image-2519" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/ghost_stories_january_1931.jpg?w=213" alt="Get creeped out by these spine-tingling stories based on true events!" width="231" height="325" /> Get creeped out by these spine-tingling stories based on true events![/caption] These eerie tales and unsolved mysteries are based on true stories that have been twisted by time into legends most terrifying. From a slit-mouthed spectral woman asking for praise from lone travelers (at the risk of getting slashed!) to the most famous haunted house in history, these stories are sure to delight as much as they frighten. Gather a group of friends for spooky story time! Set the mood with candles and creepy music, and have everyone draw in real close so they can hear these hair-raising tales of things that go bump in the night.
<img class="aligncenter wp-image-2478 " src="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/610px-jack-o-lantern_2003-10-31.jpg?w=300" alt="Jack-o'-Lantern" width="300" height="294" /> Halloween is just around the corner - time to make some mischief in your living quarters with spooky decorations! Whether you like black ravens and lace cobwebs or gruesome zombies and body parts, there's plenty of easy (and cheap) ways to make your dorm room to die for in time for Halloween. Take a stab at decorating your dorm room or apartment with these inspiring ideas we've collected below, and visit our <a href="http://www.pinterest.com/bookbyte/halloween/" target="_blank">Halloween Pinterest board</a> for more cool ideas.
[caption id="attachment_2444" align="aligncenter" width="300"]<a href="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/800px-roasted_coffee_beans.jpg"><img class="wp-image-2444 size-medium" src="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/800px-roasted_coffee_beans.jpg?w=300" alt="Roasty, toasty coffee beans." width="300" height="225" /></a> Roasty, toasty coffee beans.[/caption] Rocket fuel, joe, dirt, mud, java, brew, go juice, battery acid, morning jolt, liquid energy - whatever you call it, it's the addiction of choice for most of us. In the US alone, coffee is the second most popular drink after water, and the second most traded product in the world (the first is oil). If coffee was an intergalactic alien bent on taking over Earth, it would have already assimilated into our culture and be moving into the world domination phase of its plan. And we would let it because, for many of us, waking up without a steaming mug of java juice sounds as good as getting a root canal on a roller coaster. But if you're tired of just <em>drinking</em> your coffee, you're in luck! Many companies have been experimenting with caffeinated foods and other weird coffee-flavored combinations. With that in mind, here's some creative (and weird) java munchies to entice your taste buds.
<img class="aligncenter wp-image-2435 size-large" src="https://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/organized-desk.jpg?w=540" alt="Notebook with office supplies" width="540" height="346" /> An English term paper (worth half your grade) due in two weeks; once-a-week write-ups due for a Biology course; weekly meetings at the poetry club; best friend's birthday; date night; part-time work at the cafeteria; mom needs a ride to the airport - a bunch of little (and not so little) parts that make up every week. Where to start? Overwhelming seems like an understatement when you're neck-deep in obligations and assignments. Instead of inundating yourself with time-saving apps and self-help organizational books, try applying the zen-like doctrine of culinary chefs. <em>Mise-en-place</em> (French for "to put in place") has made its way out of the kitchen into business offices and households everywhere as a method to organize one's day and squeeze as many productive minutes out of it as possible.