Useless things to learn over summer with your free time

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Even for those of us with full-time internships over summer, there’s an odd sense that we’re somehow doing less than we are during the semester. With a little more than a month left to go this break, here’s how to spend that extra time needlessly stressing yourself out by learning the most pointless things that you will, in all likelihood, never have to use ever again.

A crueler soul might suggest that summarizes all of academia.

The commute to your internship

Remember the long, arduous first journey to your new workspace, filled with worries that you would somehow miss the BART and be late for your first day? If you haven’t already, these last few weeks before school starts should be your time to finally get used to that commute, to memorize the exact route so you don’t need to spend the entire trip double-checking your phone and praying Google Maps is still your friend. Of course, that won’t help you one bit once the semester begins, but we’re here to learn, right? At the very least, it’s good to have some basic experience with public transportation. 

Netflix release schedules

With the abundance of free time also comes the abundance of time wasted just scrolling through whatever’s on Netflix or Hulu. And with that time comes the inevitable curiosity about when the next set of potentially binge-worthy shows or movies will come out, and from there is the slippery slope of somehow memorizing what dates everything will come out over the next few weeks. Next six episodes coming out at the end of the week? Well, guess we all know how you’ll be spending Friday night.

Magic tricks

Learn some fun card tricks while you’re bored this summer. You can even set up shop on Telegraph Avenue and con some money, like how the UC system cons us out of money for tuition every year! Or wow your classmates in the fall during the icebreaker sessions that we all dread.

Where the best seats in Moffitt are

Legend says that summer sessions are when there are few enough students on campus that it’s actually possible to find seats in campus libraries. While practical experience leaves us less than persuaded, in theory, this is the best time to find which spots have the best view, the most table space and the most comfortable chairs. This new, valuable information will then go to waste as the semester begins and it’s back to the struggle of just looking around for somewhere to sit, giving up and then sitting on the floor.

What sunlight feels like

Now is the time of the year in the Bay Area when noon comes around and we aren’t completely blown away to see the sun out in the blue, blue sky. In this season of summer, we can finally experience what’s considered to be a cold day in SoCal and see what Berkeley looks like under the light of day. Of course, that lasts until sunset when the temperatures obviously take a plunge back into the depths of Berkeley normality.

Coping with boredom

We look forward to break when the semester is still ongoing, dreaming of the time when we wouldn’t have anything to do. That sounds good, but actually experiencing the sheer monotony of having absolutely nothing to busy yourself with is painful. So we all learn how to deal with that, building up little habits to keep ourselves occupied. Maybe we pick up a book for the first time in years or maybe we start going to the gym. While not objectively useless, are you really going to keep it up once the semester begins?

So there you go, Bears. Completely useless things to learn over the remaining time of sweet summer. Have fun wasting your time!

Contact Jonathan Lai at [email protected] .