Wikipedia, and ladies.

The New York Times has published an article by Noam Cohen about the huge discrepancy between male and female contributors to Wikipedia. In their analysis of the article, Jezebel focused on the contributors and what might be behind it (we aren’t considered authorities, blah blah, something about nerd culture). I, on the other hand, preferred Geekosystem’s take on it. Yeah, it’s really unfortunate that only 15% of Wikipedia contributors are women, and that needs to change. But the NYT article was ridiculously gendered in its examples. Apparently, women are responsible for the lack of information on friendship bracelets, and fashion designers, while men get all the credit for the 45 articles about characters from the Simpsons. Maybe the reason there’s more info about The Sopranos than Sex and the City is because The Sopranos is just a lot better (SORRY LADIES!).

The best study tip: take a break and meditate!

As this article reports, new research coming out of Massachusetts General Hospital may prove that regular mindfulness meditation not only helps you to relax and keeps your stress at bay, but can actually change your brain structure, increasing brain density in areas associated with focus, memory, introspection and self-awareness. The study was conducted over a period of only 8 weeks- plenty of time to get our brains in shape for midterms if we all start meditating on the regular now!

Stop by the Well Woman office for handouts with meditation tips or to listen to some meditation tapes!

Trying Out “The Cup”

I’ve been meaning to try out the Diva Cup (I will henceforth refer to it as simply “the cup” because I can’t bring myself to say “diva” in reference to myself at all) for quite some time, but every month I would mean to, and then my period would come and go and suddenly I had three weeks to deal with it, and then another period would come and go, and, well, you’ve all been there. However, two things happened in the last month which really motivated me to just get it: 1) My go-to tampon brand of choice has gone missing, and 2) I received an amazon gift card from an aunt for Christmas. Suddenly, I was tampon-less and with some extra funds. So, I just went ahead and ordered one off amazon, and it was in my possession within a week. This doesn’t mean I was eager to try it out, and sort of forgot about it until my period surprised me at my mom’s office. In the bathroom there, all they had were pads. Now, a little personal history: I haven’t used a pad since my first period 9 years ago. I get why people use them, and there have been times when I’ve wished that I did too, but I just can’t get over the diaper thing. Needless to say, I was super grumpy about it, and the second I got home I waddled upstairs, ripped open the package and got out my new cup.

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outdated beauty advice

The Hairpin just posted this amazing article about old fashioned beauty tips written by “sinister beauty expert Bonne Downing”. Outdated? Maybe, I mean, I’ve been trying to reduce my hip size by slamming them against the floor for ages, and it hasn’t worked yet. So I guess these are outdated. Downing’s website, Peculiar Beauty, has some other real gems, like “How to be a Virgin with Style and Grace” and “What to Wear to an Orgy

Boost Your Focus!

After hearing a great deal of talk about procrastination today at the Well Woman training, I thought I’d bring the blog-viewing audience a helpful application that I use to avert my own procrastination: FocusBooster!

FocusBooster is a timer tool that you can set to your own work/break schedule. The default is 25 minutes work, then a 5 minute break (as per the Pomodoro method, explained here and on the FocusBooster website), but this timer can be adjusted to any intervals you want. It also ticks like a timer and gives break alerts – should you choose to turn these functions on. Overall, it’s a simple and effective way to put your focus on the work while also leaving room for a healthy reward.

Welcome back to Barnard!