Thursday, October 10, 2013

How to Pull an All-Nighter

For most of us, we're currently stuck in the throws of mid-terms, the not-quite-as-evil step sister of final exams (which will be here before we know it). In order to survive these woes, one might have no choice but to pull an all-nighter. Some of you are veterans, some of you are babies starting your first 12 hour study-crawl. In preparation, here are a few tips to getcha started:
  1.  Be sure to procrastinate until the night before. Many students perform well under pressure, so the later you start the better. If an exam is the cause of such frantic cramming, be sure to neglect reading any chapters assigned in advance, that way the room in your brain will still be available. If writing an essay is what you are aiming to accomplish, make sure your writer’s block is at full functioning capacity; knowing exactly what to say or analyze would be far too easy. Whatever happens, remember sleep is never an option.
  2. Stock up on Mountain Dew or all the energy drinks you can find.  (You can also throw in a few candy bars for that extra sugar.) Pulling an All-Nighter is by no means healthy, but health is going to have to take a back seat for the sake of the prospective A, maybe a high B. Chug a Mountain Dew then do ten jumping jacks to really get that heart rate up. If you feel like you can jog about twelve miles, you are on the right track.
  3. Make time for breaks. If you feel the least bit daunted, repeat step two. If you are still awake and aware, keep your brain running by doing one of the following activities: dance to your favorite song, compulsively brush your teeth, or make funny faces at yourself in the mirror. The latter tends to be the best method because the darker the night, the funnier everything seems to be. Once you have reached the point of hysteria, capture that momentum and bottle it for later. Only return to that state when you feel like sleep is closing in, which I assure you will happen.
  4. Unplug your Internet cord unless the connection is absolutely necessary. Facebook is your arch nemesis, being the biggest distraction of all; not even sleep can conquer the mighty social network. As a distraction to yourself, try texting a friend in the same class and inquire about their progress with the assignment, because it is common knowledge that everyone is doing the exact same thing. If their response is a negative one commenting on their struggles, take comfort in the fact that you are ahead of them and continue to press on. Feel free to gloat in the confines of your mind.  If their response is of a positive connotation, suggesting they are almost finished and on to the heavenly illusion of sleep, fuel that anger into motivation to get done and power through those last paragraphs.
  5. When you are nearing the closing moments of the assignment, stop a second and test out your printer. It is very important that the printer understands who is in control. Be careful how many printing tests you run, for when you finally click the print button for your paper, the universe will speak and inform you the cartridge levels are too low. If you somehow manage to slip by that, expect a paper jam, or even more likely, the printer will not even receive the signal from the computer no matter what that blasted pop-up says. When faced with such opposition, try threatening to smash the machine against the dorm wall or suggest investing in a Mac for next year. That will get both your PC and printer’s attention; possibly any technological devices within 20 yards, too. If you own a more daring printer, then be sure to try affectionate speech; the thicker you lay it on, the more likely the printer will comply with your wishes. If that still does not work, all you have left to do is pray.
If this all night adventure does not quite do it for you, try accidentally deleting your paper with only three hours left to spare or actually throwing your printer against the wall because the Mountain Dew kicked in all at once. If for some reason the planets have aligned and everything goes as planned, nab that hour or two of sleep still available. Just in case, wear comfortable clothes that are versatile for comfort and style. This process should really put the “sweat” in sweatpants.  Now that you have the knowledge that will carry you through your first All-Nighter (and a little less room for the knowledge you actually need), you are ready to begin. Happy cramming!

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