Elisha’s guide to a spooktastic Halloween season.
It’s my favourite time of year again: Autumn. The air is crisp and carries the musky scent of falling leaves. The academics are working away at their studies. Many of us are plotting which costumes we will we wear for Halloween or which scary films we’ll watch to get in the Hallows Eve Spirit. There are a plethora of frightening activities and films to enjoy, but there are some real-life woes that are even more frightening. Want to feel truly spooked? Boo-shemia invites you to look no further than the psychological thrill of reality setting in on you like a serial murderer in your basic Halloween flick.
1. Mid-semester burnout
Had a particularly stressful semester? You’ve finally made it through midterm exams, and assignments…then you realise…there’s still another half semester to get through…panic sets in… Escape is not an option. Eek! How disquieting!
Nothing is worse than the feeling of losing your motivation to mid-semester burn out. None of us wishes this ailment on anybody
2. Student Loan Debt
You’ve managed to get past the initial stress of juggling coursework. All should be well, but you can’t quite shake the feeling that something is following you…Look out, behind you! It’s your student debt! Let’s be honest, this one is keeping us awake more than any horror film we’ll watch this Halloween season. There may not be monsters in your closet, but those student loans are going to be chillin’ in there for a while. Eek!
3. Grad School Application Fees
So you’ve decided to continue your academic career in Grad school! Wonderful! But wait, there’s something we forgot to mention …there is a bit of a catch 22. (*cue awkward foreboding chuckling*) you’ll still have to invest even more money (that you probably don’t have) into just applying to get into grad school! In the US, application fees will run you anywhere between $50 and $200 dollars… per school. Sure, that’s scary, but you’re safe after that, right? Not quite! Don’t forget standardised testing fees, because you’ll have to take the standardized test your chosen graduate path requires to even be considered… plus the fee for your scores to be sent to your school choices! Oh, did we startle you? Don’t worry, once you get your Graduate Degree, you’ll be able to pay all that money back…eventually…
4. The Crumbling Economy
So, once you’ve managed to acquire your degree, you might decide you want to buy a house. Great news! Wait… what do you mean you haven’t paid off that student loan debt yet? Good luck finding a lender who will give you a mortgage! Ooh, tough break. You can still rent something! And, hey, after you pay some of that student debt off, you could maybe afford to save up a down payment if you could give up buying that damn avocado toast long enough to do it! You’ll only have to give it up for the next15 years to reach the equivalent of a down-payment… You won’t have to sacrifice your soul, but you must make sacrifices somewhere, right? Or you can just cry into your avocado toast in your scary rented apartment…Cringe!
5. MODERN DATING
Okay, table that whole house buying idea. Maybe finding a partner to share your life with would make you feel better. Ah, yes! Surely, this must be the comforting turn of events you need. Erm, actually, straight-forward relationships don’t really exist anymore. You’ll have to navigate through the fun-house that is modern dating. But, I mean, no biggie! Pshhh who needs all those labels anyway? Relationships are so overrated! Oh wait, you think you’ve found someone who really likes you? Think again! Fuccbois are on the prowl, looking for meaningless hook-ups… Run! Get out while you can! But this one seems like he might be okay… So, maybe you’ll just give him a chance just to see what he’s about? That’s what they all say, before they meet the Dr. Jekyll side of a fuccboi who’s been turned down…
6. Donald Trumpkin Many of us at Booshemia have an immense love of pumpkins, tremendous. Believe us, it’s true. Despite his resemblance to our beloved orange Autumn gourd, we’re truly creeped by our not so beloved Cheeto-in-Chief. If you want some decorations spoooooky enough to ward off any possible visitors, so you can be left alone to continue binge watching Booshemia’s favourite nostalgic sci-fi, Stranger Things, (if you haven’t binged through season 2 already by Halloween) consider making your very own, absolutely terrifying Trumpkin.
7. Groups of Geriatric White Men Creating Legislature on our Reproductive Organs
I mean, this one is self-explanatory, unless you live under a rock and haven’t realized that reproductive rights are controlled by a group of aged men who have never and will never experience having a uterus. Not even the satan-spawn inducing pain of Rosemary’s baby would be enough of a case to make some of these guys consider letting you have free reign over your reproductive choices. I mean, that’s disturbingly close to an irl Rosemary’s baby scenario.
8. The Ever-Looming Threat of Nuclear War.
There’s no better way to say what we’re all thinking than with a pumpkin: Will the combined war-mongering powers of Kim Jong Un and Donald Trumpkin lead us into world war III? Perhaps they will. Perhaps they won’t. We’ll see….
9. Harvey Weinstein
This might be the most disturbing topic on this list. (Yes, even scarier than Trumpkins.) Ever since over 40 women came forward with stories of being sexual assaulted by Harvey Weinstein, the infamous film producer has become a symbol for a problem that has been experienced by nearly every woman alive. The #metoo campaign recently went viral, as women everywhere banded together as survivors and supporters to start the conversation on sexual assault, and why it has been allowed to run so rampant. Every woman I know has a sexual assault story, to varying degrees. Some of my friends are survivors of rape. Some are open about it, and have gained strength through telling their story; which can be a beautiful transmutation of trauma. Some are not ready to openly discuss their stories, but have come forward to those whom they trust most with that vulnerable information. I, myself, am a survivor. But I’m not ready to share my story. And that’s okay. The people who are not ready to share their story are just as valid. We don’t owe our stories to anyone. Respect that some #metoo’s are carried silently. This is a topic that is more than just creepy, it is traumatizing. It’s a horror that countless women have to carry, every day. Add to that, the expectation from some people that we share our stories to make them real; the high probability that we’ll be questioned, accused of lying, and ridiculed if we do share our stories… The weight of carrying it around is stomach-turning. The fact that so many of us are carrying it, is horrendous.
10. Climate Change
Climate change is real, and we’re seeing effects of that that are appearing at an alarming rate, as temperatures around the globe grow more inconsistent and unusual. The effects of our recent catastrophic hurricane activity are still being felt, as some people in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Island are still waiting on aide. This should be enough to convince people, but we still have to argue the idea that climate change is real. That’s alarming! We either have to change that somehow, or it’s life in the Matrix for all of humanity. (Oh yeah, that’s an actual theory that some scientists now hold) I’m not sure which is more petrifying: the task of saving our environment, or the possibility that it’s too late and the only way of saving us is by uploading our consciousness to a virtual reality, somehow indistinguishable from true reality… And cue the existential dread spiral!
11. Existential Dread
Elon Musk has a theory that we may all be living in a virtual reality…he’s said there’s a one in billions chance that we are living in a, “base reality”…like the matrix…and if we’re not already… we should figure out how…because we are killing our planet… and will cease to exist entirely if we don’t figure out how to essentially put ourselves into the matrix…just according to Elon Musk though… and a handful of other scientists…just a handful though… It’ll probably be okay… but what if it’s not? Wait, what’s the point of all of this anyway…What is life? Who am I? what am I??? Do student loans carry over to base realities??? Who needs psychological thrillers when there’s existential dread?!
If this Booshemia article has left you on the brink of an existential crisis, take a deep breath and remember that even though shit’s scary…
At least there’s TV.