Everything you need to know

Dear Rachael,

I’ve been super anti-social lately. It’s not because I’m depressed; it’s just because I always choose the wrong people to hang out with and they always wind up stabbing me in the back later. I really enjoy my alone time, but I’m afraid I might be using it as an escape. How can I find better people to spend time with who won’t turn me into a nut job like all my other “friends” have?

—Socially cocooned

Dear me,

I mean, dear you. I feel for you dahling! But really, overall, I think it’s best to not settle for friends, especially if you think you’ll be disappointed. It’s just like significant others — think about it.

Look for friends that make you feel good, and that you feel good around. They could be closer than you think, waiting for the backstabbers to scatter like roaches being attacked by super-strength Raid. These people could be at your favorite lounge spots, your classes, in the UC by the black chairs watching the muted TV at 3 a.m. — the possibilities are limitless.

And if, at any point, these people start making you feel like a worthless pile of manure, keep them at bay and start your search again. Besides, it takes a really mature and self-aware person to be able to have their alone time without going wonky about it, so feel free to keep doing that, as long as you hang out with some of your prospective friends too.

So long to the solo,


Dear Rachael,

I’m a pretty curvy-style weight; I’m not unhealthy, but I’m no size two. I’ve discovered a pattern in my eating habits: I always eat more during the winter (especially January and February) and less during the summer. I don’t want to be a seasonal weight yo-yo-er though! Any pointers for curbing my “I need dessert” cravings during winter the way I can during summer?

—Cravin’ like a Raven

Hello, Little Birdie,

First of all, it’s great that you realize that anything over a size two is not unhealthy. I like you! I think it’s kind of natural to eat more when it’s cold outside, especially in Pittsburgh — who doesn’t need a distraction from the lousy-every-other-day weather?

Maybe it’s not so much that you eat more, but what you eat. Instead of picking up that delicious scone or muffin or cookie, get on that delicious stick of celery instead! Unfortunately, most delicious fruits are only around during the summer (when you don’t even eat as much) but you can still get your vegetable on with salads or something.

And then when summer comes back along, keep yourself on track. If you have a blender, you should make smoothies because they are really delicious and totally healthy. I mean, they are made up of fruits and calcium. Seriously.

Good luck on your track to deliciousness,