Picks of the week: Shake off the midterm slump

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Everyone’s been there: Midterms creep up all too quickly, and all of a sudden everything beyond the growing dread of yet another midterm season falls out of focus. You tell yourself that you won’t get up from your desk until you finish writing four more pages of your paper and finish two more of the problem sets that you’ve been putting off all semester. You have no idea when this will actually happen, because all of a sudden, literally every single targeted ad on Facebook seems more interesting than some lame-o paper.

A study break is necessary, but you’ve spent so much time with your textbook-littered desk and tear-soaked pillow, and you’ve lost track of the outside world entirely. Check out this week’s picks to get some ideas for your next study break.

Monday: Watch the presidential debate

After months and months of waiting, the last leg of this election cycle — which has been going on for what seems like forever  — is set to debut Monday night. If you want a study break that is still productive, catch the debate online on the Huffington Post or on any major television network starting at 6 p.m. PST. You’ll feel informed, relaxed and ready to take on your midterms with all the confidence of an actual presidential candidate — not to mention the fact that by watching the debates live, you could be the one to make memes of it in real time.

Tuesday: “Ixcanul” at Shattuck Cinemas

If you’re really looking to take a break from midterm stress, what better way to do it than to immerse yourself in the world within a foreign language film? “Ixcanul” follows the young Maria, who is caught between the way of life her community has followed for generations and the navigation of her way into the modern world. The film, which was Guatemala’s entry to the Best Foreign Language film category at the 2016 Oscars, blends Spanish and Kaqchikel as seamlessly as it weaves together images of tradition and modernity.

Thursday: Art Lab at Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

Take advantage of your free admission to BAMPFA by participating in one of its Art Lab sessions. When you visit during an Art Lab (starting at 4 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and all day Saturday and Sunday), not only will you get to see all of the exhibitions that are currently on view, but you’ll also get to channel all of your pent-up energy (or frustration) on making your own artwork that you can take home and display on your fridge or even mail to your mom who’ll be sure to display it on hers. Who knows? Maybe you’ll even discover that all of this “problem set” and “midterm” stuff is total nonsense and that you were born to be an artist all along!

Anytime: Plan a study date at Ars

Okay, while it’s not technically a break from studying, study dates can be a way to have fun studying and get in some interaction with the outside world during a week filled with midterms. What better place to have a study date than Artís on Fourth Street? With its sleek interior design, abundance of natural lighting and delicious roasts there’s really no better place to put you in the mood for powering through a study session while bonding with your best friends over shared midterm woes or impressing that cutie who you’ve been wanting to talk to forever and finally have an excuse to hang out with.

Contact Sannidhi Shukla at [email protected].