My not-so-secret love affair with Post-it notes

Gillian LelchukThis is just not my week.

Well let’s be real, this is Hopkins so it’s never my week. But somehow I manage to keep it together in front of all my adoring fans and the people who read my columns (i.e., my mom and, like, three of my friends). So how do I do it? Well, dear reader (hi, Mom), I’ll let you in on the well-protected secret to my success: Post-it notes.

“Huh?” you ask, confused about how a small square of paper with a bit of adhesive on the back can help me keep my sh*t together.

Post-it notes are the most versatile of office supplies known to man. You can use them for their intended purpose — leaving yourself and the people around you notes — or you can repurpose them to help these little gods of paper realize their potential.

RAMESH NG/ CC BY-SA 2.0 Available in many vibrant colors, these versatile pads of paper help me keep my life together.

Available in many vibrant colors, these versatile pads of paper help me keep my life together.

Let’s start with the intended purpose: leaving notes. They’re great for if you, say, edit the columns section of The News-Letter and need to keep your weekly writers straight. Or they’re great for when, over the summer, you come home late at night and your mom leaves a note on your bathroom mirror reminding you that she needs your laundry basket by nine tomorrow morning if you want to take advantage of her motherly services (thanks, Mom). Or they’re great for when you only do half of the dishes next to the sink and need to tell your roommates which dishes still need to be washed.

“Cool, thanks for summarizing how to use a Post-it note, Gillian,” you say.

Calm down, calm down. I’m getting to the more interesting uses. What else can you use sticky notes for?

Bookmarks! They’re perfect placeholders for your homework readings or your fun readings because you can stop reading anywhere you want. That’s right, no longer do you have to wait until the end of a chapter or the end of a page. Now you can stop at the end of a line. Just stick that note on there and that little piece of paper is not going anywhere. Plus, you can write yourself notes on it. You don’t need to deface your literature when you’ve got a multifunctional bookmark right there.

“But Gillian,” you interrupt, “We’re Hopkins students. We don’t read.”

Okay, fine. You know what else Post-its are good for? Decoration. You can write your favorite song lyrics on them and stick them to your wall, smack dab in the middle of your artsy collage. Or you can perform some amateur origami on those bad boys and make some flowers or even a thousand paper cranes if you’re really cool.

“Gillian, you’re not making any sense,” you complain, about to suggest I get some sleep.

Clearly my I-have-it-together facade is not as airtight as I was hoping. Maybe Post-its aren’t the solution to everything. Has my whole life been a lie? Was the birthday present from my mom, the white cat holding a salmon-colored Post-it pad, a useless purchase? Is my passion for Post-it notes making me seem crazy?

Okay, yeah, maybe. I should probably just admit defeat and allow myself to fall prey to the aura of dishevelment that permeates this school. I should just give up on keeping myself composed on the outside when I’m so frazzled on the inside.

I mean, I essentially just used this column to have a conversation with myself about the benefits of Post-it notes. Maybe I am crazy…

Or maybe I’m just victim to an academic system that sucks its students dry and eliminates whatever love of learning they once had. Hmm, no, that’s not exactly true. We still like learning, don’t we? We just don’t like working hard. We want all the gains without any of the pain.

That’s where it comes back down to the Post-it notes. These versatile little office supplies can help alleviate some of the stress that comes hand in hand with being a Hopkins student. They help us keep track of our busy schedules, of names and dates we need to remember, and of our own sanity.

Okay, maybe you don’t use them obsessively like I do. But I would be lost without my colored pads of sticky paper.

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