BACK-TO-SCHOOL SURVIVAL PLAYLIST

Can we all agree that back-to-school shopping is the best thing about actually going back to school? Your parents are happy because everything is (slightly) cheaper than it was in July and you’re happy because you’re about to roll up on day 1 like a freaking rockstar in your fresh clothes and accessories with the tags still on it. Back in my day, which was longer ago than I’m comfortable admitting to the Internet, we always got new spiral notebooks (because the composition ones were so last generation), super fancy pens/pencils/highlighters/markers/anything that marks a piece of paper basically, the good erasers (the ones for the art students that could erase anything – including the bad memories of having to erase the entire writing test and start over because you realized at the end it had nothing to do with the ridiculous given prompt), some sort of binder, at least one new outfit, and if we were lucky, a new backpack. By lucky, clearly I mean if we were clever enough to “wear out” our one from the previous year with the rigorous demands of learning.

Today, however, I’m assuming the children roll up on hoverboards with their smart backpacks containing the latest, greatest smartphone, tablet, and TI calculator (the ones that essentially pass math for you). Most likely with a smartwatch on their wrist, and shoes that cost more than my grocery bill. Nothing makes you feel less successful than seeing a child have better style, and technology, than you … a hard-working, money making adult. It’s fine, whatever, I’m over it. At least I can drive myself to Target whenever I want and buy all of the Chewy Chips Ahoy for “sharing” with others. And by others I clearly mean my mouth and my stomach.  

So with all the back-to-school excitement, everyone needs a hype playlist to set the mood for not only the first day, but the whole first week. Then reality sets in and just getting dressed in the morning is a struggle, so the next 175(ish) days are just going to be what they are. There are certain rules when creating said playlist, though:

  1. The playlist must last at least your entire commute, but preferably from the time you begin getting dressed until the bell rings for the first class and you’ll get detention if you don’t turn it off
  2. The playlist theme must center around how you are the sh*t and no one can tell you different
  3. The sub-theme must center around how you make your own way, don’t worry about the haters who think you’ll never make it (including the counselor from last year who is all like ‘graduation isn’t guaranteed, you have to meet minimum grade requirements to walk and proceed to the next grade ’… blah, blah, blah I’ll write my own story thank you)
  4. The first song needs to have a solid beat that you could / have danced to at some point. Preferably it makes you want to dance in a way that will shock some people who don’t know the real you
  5. The last song needs to have a parting message about actually getting sh*t done so you can end it and be like ‘I’m about to own this school year, ready or not, HERE I COME
  6. The songs in between need to be a balance of a good beat and lyrics that you can get behind. What does that mean? Essentially, those lyrics should be motivational quotes bouncing around in your head to get that quick hype hit in the middle of History class

It’s that simple really. Look at all the insanely successful people in the world and I would bet at some point they listened to a song and got inspired. I have zero evidence that any of them did a specific back-to-school playlist, but who’s to say you can’t be the first? For all you podcast addicts out there, take the same rules and apply them to podcasts. Since those tend to be slightly longer, you can do it over a week, or you can put all of them on triple time and try to still get the same inspiration from them … your choice.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who makes great playlists, maybe hit them up because a mediocre playlist could result in a mediocre year and nobody wants that. Thanks for reading!


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TWELVE TROLL OBSERVATIONS FROM THE TROLLS WORLD TOUR TRAILER

It’s been a few years since Dreamworks turned back time and decided that the troll “action” figures needed to be animated in their own entire feature film. Of all the popular toys, though, from the late 1900’s, this was probably the safest choice. Also, the children of today have no smurf-like characters to compare tiny things to. As an “adult”, I didn’t hate it. Didn’t love it enough for a World Tour, but the children have spoken so here we are.

There’s a LOT to unpack from the official 2 minute and 46 second commercial. Easter eggs galore that I really hope expand into the movie itself – maybe Easter egg is not an appropriate metaphor here since they’re bigger than a troll. Pebbles? Music notes? Whatever you want to call it, if the movie is anything like the trailer, it will be confusing, highly predictable, yet somehow addictive and catchy.

Rejected Cricket Characters

A Cricket commercial extra is our first intro to the movie. Like the sun from Teletubbies, but blue, fuzzy, and appears to be at least a young adult. Which would kind of fit with the timeline of life.

Charlotte and her Web

Charlotte herself appears and has changed drastically since her 2003 film debut. For starters, she put on a Barney colored costume and lowered her voice several octaves. She now sounds like Joey when he’s talking to a woman.

Alice in Wonderland

Poppy channels her inner Alice and travels to Wonderland for her opening trailer music scene. Dancing flowers, mushrooms, and caterpillars. Only missing the rabbit with his stopwatch and one would not be sure which movie they were watching.

Avril Lavigne is Back

Avril Lavigne’s troll version is the main villain, but has mad guitar skills and can shred with the best of them. I could get behind the rockers.

Are History Classes not a Thing at Troll School?

Clearly, the Trolls don’t have history classes in school. Do they even have school? Everyone would pass if they gave each other a hug so graduating would need to be taken with a hint of skepticism. Did they think they were the only ones? Selfish.

Made in 2nd Grade

Did…did one of the illustrator’s children design the ancestor lineage? It’s like an arts and crafts project gone slightly wrong. It looks like someone dropped a bunch of triangles and circles on the page.

Techno is Organized…Who Knew?

The techno trolls are surprisingly organized, but also seem to be the least stressed. Is anyone surprised by this? You shouldn’t be. Their fan section looks straight off a music producer’s beatpad.

Mean Girls

The rocker trolls are unnecessarily dramatic. Yes, they have Avril Lavigne as their leader, but really? The whole world? Keep it in check. Everyone deserves to live the life they want sans music genre dictators.

Cuffing Season – It’s Never Too Early

Poppy has her fantasy cuffing moment with Branch standing right beside her. No pressure or anything Branch, but that is definitely a hint!

Country Songs are Accurate

The country trolls look nice, but appear to be holding some deep founded grudge. Probably from a broken heart at some point in between the circles and triangles of their history.

Biggie is Relatable…Still

Biggie is every person on a roller coaster ever in this commercial. We only get him for a few seconds, but he maximizes them. In the air: “Oh, look. I think I can see our house from up here!”. Me, on a roller coaster: “I think I can see my car from up here!”.

Tiny for President

Tiny has more swag than any human I’ve ever met. His whole body is shiny, and in a classy way if I may say so myself. He doesn’t use backup dancers, or hype men, because he is enough on his own. Then his voice is a beautiful mix between Morgan Freeman and James Earl Jones. I’m here for it.

Lowkey, I’m excited to see this movie. Not pay for a theater ticket excited, but definitely in a if-it-comes-to-Netflix-and-I’m-done-binge-watching-my-current-series excited. The title is a tad misleading, after the trailer breakdown, I think Trolls: Separated By Genres, Reunited Against Rock would have been more appropriate, but then again, I’m not a movie titler for a reason.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you are secretly excited for the new Trolls / modern day Smurfs movie don’t be ashamed – own that side of you like troll Avril owns her bark guitar. Thanks for reading!


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