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Gearing Up

Rust ERust E Registered User regular
edited June 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
Yo, I'm an 18 y/o high school graduate and I'm just killing time over summer until college. I'll be at CalPolySLO next year and couldn't be more excited.

As my time at home is shortened, this change is becoming more real. I've realized that I need to start getting things organized!

I've started to put a list together of things I need to get.

Some of these things are for my social life, fun, and being a totally gnarly frat broski.
Ex: camelback, beer belt, new clothes

There are also things for school/organization.
Ex: HUGE calendar, laptop





I was just wondering if there's anything you guys wish you had brought to the dorms as a freshman or something cool you saw someone else have that you think I should get in order to be the #1 totally coolest kid around. Basically things that most people seem to overlook, WANT, or just plain forget about.

Also, what are some skills/habits I should start to work on? I think I'll need to get used to riding a longboard and being a neat freak...


Anything helps, thanks!

Rust E on

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    PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    <Obligatory response> Condoms, bulk-packs. </OR>

    A good pillow if you're staying in residence. Provided ones tend to suck.
    A strong lock for that laptop.
    Sunscreen. Burning during frosh week sucks.

    ... It's been awhile since I was at college. Anyone not so ancient as myself want to chip in? :P

    PeregrineFalcon on
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    TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Do you have a favorite soda that isn't available in that region?
    I was pretty popular by virtue of having a ton of Dr Pepper stocked up, because my parents could pick it up much cheaper at home than around my college.

    Toiletries.
    Underwear and socks are good to have plenty of too. Those were always the limiting reagent in determining when I did laundry.

    Tofystedeth on
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    PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    SHOWER SHOES

    Toiletries reminded me of this. Dorm showers are nasty.

    PeregrineFalcon on
    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
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    ink4n3ink4n3 Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Shower shoes. You don't walk to walk around the bathroom floor with no foot protection.

    Edit: Beat'd

    ink4n3 on
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    SammyFSammyF Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    It's kind of amazing how no one ever thinks of buying bandaids, aspirin, peptobysmal, and Nyquil until you're bleeding from a broken beer bottle you stepped on, coping with a massive headache, shitting out your guts from whatever undercooked chicken byproduct you just ate in the dining hall, or so congested you can't sleep the night before your final in Chemistry 101.

    SammyF on
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    ink4n3ink4n3 Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    SammyF wrote: »
    It's kind of amazing how no one ever thinks of buying bandaids, aspirin, peptobysmal, and Nyquil until you're bleeding from a broken beer bottle you stepped on, coping with a massive headache, shitting out your guts from whatever undercooked chicken byproduct you just ate in the dining hall, or so congested you can't sleep the night before your final in Chemistry 101.

    That is some great advice, however, I'd try to keep it quiet about what kind of meds you have in your room. You will be the go to guy for when any dude in your hall has a cough and wants a robo trip. You also will not have any meds available for yourself when you really need them.

    ink4n3 on
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    SevorakSevorak Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    I graduated from Cal Poly a year and a half ago. You're going to have a blast. It's a dry campus, so be smart about drinking and being drunk on campus. A bike is great for getting around campus. The school's built on a hill with the dorms at the top, so getting to the main part of campus from the dorms is nice and easy, but coming back will give you a bit of a workout to avoid the freshman 15.

    If you don't already know how to do laundry, man up and ask whoever does your laundry to show you.

    Pretty much no one brings a first aid kit, but it's an important thing to have.

    If you're doing WOW (Week of Welcome for you not Cal Poly people) they will give you cheap flip flops that make great shower shoes when you check in, unless things have changed. Those were a life saver.

    If you're not doing WOW, sign up right now. Trust me.

    Sevorak on
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    Rust ERust E Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Sevorak wrote: »

    Pretty much no one brings a first aid kit, but it's an important thing to have.

    If you're doing WOW (Week of Welcome for you not Cal Poly people) they will give you cheap flip flops that make great shower shoes when you check in, unless things have changed. Those were a life saver.

    If you're not doing WOW, sign up right now. Trust me.

    Definitely doing WOW. I hear its nickname is Week of Wasted, must admit that sounds attractive. Also I'm sure it's a great way to meet new people and make friends in this unfamiliar environment.

    But yes, great advice so far. Thanks! And don't be afraid to get a little silly with your reccommendations, I'd like some random possessions that nobody else would have 8-)

    Rust E on
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    Mike DangerMike Danger "Diane..." a place both wonderful and strangeRegistered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Bring a doorstop if you want to make friends in your dorm.

    Other things: USB hub (I don't know about your laptop, but I am constantly trying to plug 3 things into my 2 USB port MacBook), rad posters (my rule of thumb was that I tried to only buy 1 from a chain store like Newbury Comics, and got the rest from more obscure places)

    If you have a large flatscreen monitor for your desktop that you can bring with you and plug into your laptop, do this. Great whether you're working on assignments or watching movies.

    I don't know what the chain supermarket situation is out there in California, but I highly recommend a discount card for wherever you prefer to shop. I started shaving some pretty significant amounts off my Big Y bills once I got the Express Card or whatever the hell it's called (and having snacks around is good).

    Mike Danger on
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    ascannerlightlyascannerlightly Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    1) blender
    2) margaritas
    3) drunk co-eds
    4) ????
    5) profit

    ascannerlightly on
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    SmurphSmurph Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Power strips, napkin/kleenex/paper towels, paper plates. Some means of connecting to the internet weather it is a wifi router or a long Ethernet cable to go around the room.

    I have this box that is made to be like a mini filing cabinet so you can hang folders in it. This thing was huge throughout all 4 years of college and is still being used today. Any paperwork or printouts with important stuff on them just went in there instead of being piled on my desk/shelves like everyone else.

    Smurph on
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    Mike DangerMike Danger "Diane..." a place both wonderful and strangeRegistered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Yeah, a good way to be the hero is to have paper plates, plastic silverware, and napkins.

    Mike Danger on
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    SammyFSammyF Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Consider getting some external speakers for your laptop for music if you think you might want better sound fidelity at louder volumes than what you're going to get out of the internals.

    SammyF on
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    KillgrimageKillgrimage Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    If you want weird stuff that will also make your room look cool, I really liked having Christmas lights (the white/gold-only kind) strung up around the ceiling of mine. My roommate and I hated using the shitty florescent light that came with the room, and pretty much immediately made a rule not to turn it on. Instead, we grabbed a couple nice-ish looking lamps (with SHADES, not that crap one that looks like a tentacle monster that I see in every college store.) When we were studying or doing projects, the lamps were on. When entertaining or hanging out the Christmas lights created just the right ambience (think restaurant lighting). Great for when you bring a lady friend over too :winky:

    I don't know how your room is, but I had rooms that were set up as a "Z" room in college so we would put up a curtain between the two spaces and that looked really nice when a breeze came through.

    Take your screen out of your window, if you can, and make it so you can replace it when you leave. This was fun because sometimes we'd lower stuff down on string and have the people below take it. Or freak them out by knocking shit against their window (I lived in a tower so this was extra funny).

    That's all I can think of for now!

    Killgrimage on
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    Mike DangerMike Danger "Diane..." a place both wonderful and strangeRegistered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Disclaimer: as far as I know, most schools don't let you take screens off the windows (we even had campus police come through my dorm a few times due to people throwing things out of windows/climbing into windows on the basement/ground level--usually to escape campus police :P)

    The Christmas lights/lamp thing is a good idea though. One of my friends this past year had the Christmas lights, and my girlfriend had a floor lamp next to her bed. Both of these were considerably better than the overheads.

    BRING A FAN. Dorms tend to be on the hot side. I go to school in Mass, and I had the window in my dorm open until there was snow on the ground (and even for a little while after there was) because keeping it shut made the room get way too hot.

    I'm not a musician, but from what I've seen, the people who are musicians and bring their instruments tend to gather pretty quickly. There was a little impromptu band that started up right under my window at night during orientation and the first few warm weeks at school that was actually fun to listen to (they just played jazz music and jazz-ish versions of popular songs). Please don't be one of those dicks that starts a band and tries to get everyone he knows to come and listen all the damn time, though.

    Mike Danger on
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    i n c u b u si n c u b u s Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    I'm in your same situation (except I'm transfering from a CC). I'd go ahead and read through your school's residence guide now if they have it posted online. It should tell you what you can and can not do in your room as far as behavior and decorating goes. I know at my school they don't allow christmas lights or skateboarding at all on campus which is a bummer because I planned on doing both. I agree with Mike and suggest that you bring an instrument if you play any. I know I'm taking at least some of my guitar set up with me and it helps because my roommate is also a musician.

    I HIGHLY encourage checking with your school about the appropriate bedding! I've heard lots of horror stories about kids who bought hundreds of dollars worth of sheets and comforts in an "extra long" size for the dorm beds only have them not fit. My school sent out a catalog with bedding packages that were guarenteed to fit our beds. I can provide the link if you'd like.

    i n c u b u s on
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    HypatiaHypatia Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Seconding a fan and shower flip flops.

    Bring a light. Most of the time the default light in the dorms sucks.

    If you're in a dorm that has a communal microwave, make sure you bring a can opener, you'll be glad you did at some point.

    Hypatia on
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    PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    I HIGHLY encourage checking with your school about the appropriate bedding! I've heard lots of horror stories about kids who bought hundreds of dollars worth of sheets

    Spending "hundreds of dollars" on bedding is a horror story in its own right regardless of whether or not it fits. D:

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    Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    yeah fuck that, i just bought some shitty bedding

    get a foam pad thing though to put on your mattress because dorm mattresses ain't comfy enough without em
    guarantee it

    Shazkar Shadowstorm on
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    TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Also anything you can do to put more material between your skin and the surface of that mattress is good.

    Tofystedeth on
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    i n c u b u si n c u b u s Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    I HIGHLY encourage checking with your school about the appropriate bedding! I've heard lots of horror stories about kids who bought hundreds of dollars worth of sheets

    Spending "hundreds of dollars" on bedding is a horror story in its own right regardless of whether or not it fits. D:

    That was my first thought as well but I figured how much it would cost at say Walmart or Target and once you add up a set of sheets, comforter, a decent pillow, another back up set of sheets for laundry days, etc it starts to pile up. I ended up spending about $200 including the foam matress pad and it even came with a free pair of shower sandals. :mrgreen:

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    WileyWiley In the dirt.Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    A foam pad as a layer of protection from the various fluids that have seeped into your mattress is a must, also for the shower you need a caddy to carry your shampoo, soap, and various toiletries in.

    Wiley on
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    Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    tupperware

    Shazkar Shadowstorm on
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    WileyWiley In the dirt.Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Find out if your room has a locking cabinet and bring a padlock if it does.

    Wiley on
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