Sat09222018

Last updateWed, 19 Sep 2018 1pm

Opinion

Off-Campus Eateries

Off Campus EateriesCan you believe it? We are three weeks into the semester already! What this means is that you have likely depleted your stash of instant noodles, tested out every station in the dining hall and have eaten way more Jersey Mike’s than you would like to admit.

It is around this time that the newness of on-campus dining begins to fade away and suddenly the idea of having cereal for every meal doesn’t sound half bad; but it doesn’t have to be like that.

Believe it or not, a whole other world exists outside of campus and it is just waiting for you to experience its many culinary delights. So, put down the ramen, forget about meal swipes and take your taste buds for a ride to three of my favorite off-campus eats. With a full tank and an empty stomach, the opportunities are endless.

Ippin Ramen, Oakhurst

Yes, we are college students and yes, we love Ramen. But have you ever tasted real Ramen? I don’t mean the kind that comes in a Styrofoam cup with dried noodles and a spice packet containing very questionable ingredients.

No, you are better than that. I am talking about authentic ramen. Ramen with hot broth that will warm your soul and is flavorful enough on its own that it doesn’t require enough salt to spike your blood pressure (I’m looking at you instant Ramen!)

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Activites to Cure the Rainy Day Blues

default article imageRain has the potential to put a damper (no pun intended, though maybe just a little bit) on any day of the week.

Whether it’s Monday and you have to trek all the way to Bey Hall with nothing but a hoodie and an inverted umbrella to keep you dry or it’s Saturday and you’re stuck inside watching the torrential downpour, the rain sinks any chance of outside enjoyment.

The sky opening up is just about the last thing anyone wants happening, especially when it means saying goodbye to summer and being forced inside to take shelter from the elements.

So, I’ve thought of just a few things that will help our Monmouth hawks soar through this bad weather with ease.

First and foremost, just hunker down at your desk and get some homework done.  Personally, I can’t sit and enjoy any time I have to myself if I have an assignment nagging me from my book bag.

Being stuck inside gives you no room to procrastinate and make up excuses as to why you didn’t read that simple five-page introduction chapter.

Most people choose to catch up on YouTube video series or their latest Netflix obsession (I highly suggest flipping through a couple episodes of Black Mirror) on a rainy day.

While lying in bed seems to be the popular option, I always thought making a blanket fort would be fun.  I know we’re technically considered adults, but that doesn’t mean we can’t act like children sometimes, right?

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Crocs: Fashion & Function

default article imageThis weather is crazy. One minute it’s raining and the next minute the sun is shining and you are sweating. What shoes are both functional and fashionable for such weather changes? That’s right, Crocs.

You are lying if you say that you never owned Crocs. I can remember the first time that I got a pair of Crocs. I was seven years old and my mother came home from the shoe store with these funky foam shoes in three different colors. She was the only person in town to sport these air, water shoes. People would stop her and ask what they were and where the heck she bought them. Next thing I knew, everyone in my family had at least one pair of Crocs.

First, let’s talk about their functionality. Waterproof. Boom. Sure, they have holes in them so your feet get a little wet, but they are more elevated than flip flops and provide more support and stability.

Most Croc styles, and there are a lot of them (but we will get to those later), come with a security strap that can be placed around the back of the heel so that the shoes do not fall off. Crocs dry easily. Oh, it has stopped raining? Your shoes will be dry in five minutes, tops.

Now, let’s discuss the fashionable aspect of these wondrous water shoes. Crocs come in a myriad of fashions. There are the classics that come with the ankle strap. There are “Mary Janes” that are slightly more feminine. There are flip flops, clogs, sneakers, boots, and probably many styles that are just waiting for you in your local Crocs store.

 Probably my favorite style of Crocs were the Mammoth Crocs. These were perfect for winter. Lined with a plush, sock-like lining, these shoes were waterproof slip-ons that kept your toes warm. What a concept.

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Benefits of a Meal Plan

default article imageGoing to college earns you a one-way ticket to a life time of responsibility, at least for the time being while you’re away from home. 

Without the watchful eyes of your doting parents, you are expected to keep up with all the ins and outs of your life at school, whether that be the cleanliness of your living space, your time management or your health. 

So what happens when you need to feed yourself?  Mom and dad aren’t going to cook for you but you do have someone else on campus who will.  That’s where having a meal plan comes in.

I’m a senior here at Monmouth and I can say without shame that I still have a meal plan while living in the Garden apartments.  Even with full access to a kitchen, I know I don’t have the time, patience or quite frankly the ability to cook for myself.  I’m not a five-star chef who can make about a million different dishes to satisfy whatever craving it is that I’m having that day. I can make a mean pancake, throw together just about any sandwich and on occasion, make a stir fry that even my parents approve of. 

With only just a handful of things in my food portfolio, I don’t have the time to master more dishes while I’m creating my work portfolio.  So keeping my meal plan even with the access to a kitchen just seemed right for me.

Meal plans aren’t just ideal for time or skill level.  To all the freshmen out there reading this, please take my advice. 

Going to the dining hall with a group of people to grab dinner is one of the easiest ways to make connections and find the ones you click with.  There’s just something about food that brings people together and the dining hall, or even the student center food court, is no exception.

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Impact of Post-Truth Media

default article imagePost-Truth (adj.) – Relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.

We live in a distorted world where abhorrent misinformation is allowed to thrive in the post-modernity of conventional discourse.

On Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, attorney Rudy Giuliani graced NBC’s “Meet the Press” with his presence to discuss the latest demands by the special counsel of Robert Mueller for a testimony from President Trump himself in-regards to the ongoing investigation of Russian interference during the 2016 presidential election.

 Needless to say, Mr. Giuliani was not too enthralled at the idea of his client walking into the proverbial lion’s den that has been trying to lure him in for over a year now. During his on-air interview with Chuck Todd, Mr. Giuliani uttered a rather chilling line to his host when discussing the matter of truth in this investigation: “truth isn’t truth.”

That single phrase uttered by Giuliani is one that is reminiscent of the Orwellian concept of “doublespeak”—deliberately distorting and even reversing the meaning of words—but is only a relatively small phrase in the context of a much greater story.

Political differences aside, the current state of media in the United States can largely be traced back to two distinct events in the last thirty years. The first one came with the repeal of the FCC’s Fairness Doctrine by the Reagan Administration in 1987; a law that had required media outlets to present controversial issues by covering contrasting views related to those events in a factual manner.

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Get the Heck Out of Here and Get Outdoors

Get OutdoorsWelcome back to campus! I know many of you have been eagerly awaiting to escape the grips of your parents (love you mom and dad!) and return to campus to resume living in freedom once again.

I agree, it’s great to be back at school and getting into the swing of things, but I am here to encourage you to get the heck out of here. Yes, you read that correctly, leave the campus that you have looked forward to returning to all summer and expand your horizons for a weekend or a couple of hours.

It is great being at Monmouth where everything you need is but a short walk away, but you’ll be here all year, why not use the beautiful weather to your advantage and soak it up before the frigid temps begin to creep up on us all.

Everyone already knows that Monmouth is a coastal school (yes, we know the beach is only a mile away!) but there are so many other great places to explore for an afternoon or a long weekend.

Grab a few friends, load up the car with sleeping bags and all your favorite snacks, compile a killer playlist and hit the road.

Monmouth will still be here when you return, I promise! Now is the time to take advantage of the weather and the flexibility before the semester really picks up with studying, clubs and homework clogging up your precious free time.

So, where to go? Depending on how far you are willing to travel here are a few of my top picks:

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Don't Grow Up, Just Do Grown Up Things | Brett O'Grady's Senior Goodbye

OGrady 1Change is difficult, yet unavoidable. They say the key to life is adapting, but I have never found ease in adapting to changes. I would be lying if I said I did not tend to be a creature of habit and comfort. It’s hard for me to let go of these past four years at Monmouth, just as it was for me to let go of my high school years.

It seems like just yesterday I was crying about my high school graduation with the thought of all  of my childhood friends being scattered at various colleges throughout the country, and now the time has come again. Cliché, but where did the time go?

Somewhere between the embarrassingly fun nights out, the sometimes (most of the time)-questionable decisions, and forming the amazing friendships I have today, I have transformed at Monmouth into the person I always wanted to be.

I started at Monmouth a shy, 18 year old who thought she peaked in high school and had no clue what she wanted to do with her life. Without even realizing, I adapted and transformed into this 22 year old who has a job lined up after she graduates, knows exactly what she wants to do, has goals and is confident in her skill set.

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After Graduation

After GraduationWith graduation approaching in three weeks, a constant question that people keep asking is “what are your plans after graduation?”.

It is bad enough that the seniors already are experiencing immense amounts of emotions but now we have to deal with the added pressure of knowing what we are going to do.  Often times peoples intentions are not bad. People are just curious and interested in your life.

Although the intention is good, it can be overwhelming. I think many seniors, like myself, are more concerned with graduating and passing all of our finals. Currently, we are attempting to create a balance between academics and our ability to engage in our social life. Until I take my exams and pass them, I will not feel a sense of relief.

The stress of graduating also makes it difficult to focus on schoolwork. When people are constantly reminding me about graduation, it makes me nervous and anxious.

Even for those who do have plans after graduation, it is still important for us to enjoy the moment. Our generation is often in such a rush to move on to the next thing that we forget to make the most out of our current situation. I am grateful to have plans for next year and share them with others however I would like to do that at my own time.

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Natural Remedies

default article imageLiving by the shore always has its beach day benefits and one painful downfall- sunburn. After we would be out in the sun all day, my sister and I would come back to the house with our noses and Irish cheeks glowing a raw red color.

Our mother would walk over to the terracotta pot with hard, pointy tentacles bursting out of it as if an octopus’ head was buried in the dirt and tear off an old stem of the aloe plant, exposing the translucent green goo. We would then rub the guts of the plant into the burnt parts of our faces; the cooling sensation would instantly ease the burning affects the sun had left on our cheekbones. 

Throughout my childhood I can remember the many remedies that my mother and grandmother swore by. Any time any physical ailment was realized; cut, splinter, burn, infection, or sore joint my mother brought out the zinnkraut. Zinnkraut is German for field horsetail. I have soaked my entire body in the plant and was soon in better health.

Once, driving through the woods, we saw it growing on the side of the road and had to stop and grab some; there was always a supply of the grass strands in my household, and the magic of the plant healed just about any injury.

 My sister and I had never been vaccinated until we absolutely had to, as we were going to attend college. Some believe it causes other diseases or even autism; however, I’m not sure how true those statements are. When I researched vaccines, I found that some of them were not given in Europe even if they were encouraged by physicians in the United States, which made me wary.

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Goals for the Summer

Summer GoalsWhat do ice cream, zip-lining, and summer vacation have in common? They all go by fast, so it’s best to enjoy them as much as possible before the new, Fall semester begins.

I would advise eating ice cream slowly, since it would freeze your brain faster than calculus homework on a Tuesday night.

Other than that, I can safely argue that it’s one of the best parts of the summer season. Driving down to Englishtown and buying my first waffle cone of the season is something I look forward to every year. My white Toyota Camry, one of Four Boys’ vanilla ice cream cones, and my “yet-to-be-tan” skin are a sight to be seen together on the contrasting color of the parking lot.

The time I discovered Four Boys Ice Cream was an interesting one. I was driving home from Freehold Mall on an evening hotter than a Twitter debate. I pulled my car into the Englishtown shop’s parking lot, found a spot, and walked up to the window with five dollars.

“Can I help you?” asked a young woman in a red uniform.

“Can I have a medium and a small vanilla cone?” I replied, trying to suppress the urge to bounce on my toes.

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Best Food in Town

Best Food in TownMonmouth University is best known for being just minutes from the famous beaches of New Jersey. Another great feature: the amount of great places to eat around Long Branch. From sushi to pancakes, there are awesome restaurants close to Monmouth that can satisfy any craving you have. Here’s a list of all the places every foodie should hit in the Long Branch area.

Playa Bowls is a Jersey Shore staple. They offer healthy and refreshing choices that still taste great. With locations in both Belmar and Pier Village, you have no excuse not to try it. Playa Bowls offers tons of different acai bowls which are made with a smoothie base with the acai fruit (powerful antioxidants with healthy omegas and healthy fats), topped with things such as granola, peanut butter, and coconut. Playa bowls are a great breakfast option because they are super filling but still healthy. Playa Bowls get so crowded in the summer with tourists, so it’s nice to be able to take advantage of having access to it all year round if you go to Monmouth. Playa Bowls offers more than just their classic bowls; they have a wide range of smoothies and chia pudding bowls. The colorful bowls look picture perfect when they come out which makes them great for Snapchat.

Taka, in Asbury Park, is one of the best sushi places in the area. This restaurant has contemporary Japanese food, with sushi that’s to die for. Even if you’re not a sushi lover, there are other great options such as poke bowls, BBQ salmon, and crab cakes. The restaurant has a modern aesthetic, with a bar and lounge that make it great for a late night sushi fix. The owner, Taka, worked at well-known sushi restaurants in Miami Beach before moving to New Jersey. Taka has a wide range of special rolls such as the Red Dragon and Mexican rolls. This restaurant also boasts a great cocktail menu. At happy hour you can get sake sangria for just $6. Also, the blueberry margarita is amazing.

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Contact Information

CAMPUS LOCATION
The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

MAILING ADDRESS
The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey
07764

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151
Email: outlook@monmouth.edu