Everything you need to know

Dear Rachael,

I have a summer lease in the area after I graduate (since I have no interest in living with my parents), but no job to pay the rent with. I’ve gotten terribly depressed and stressed out after getting rejected by several dozen companies, and it’s starting to affect my schoolwork. This unfortunately means I might not do well enough to pass the classes I need to graduate. All this stress is compounded by the fact that I have to go to a family reunion shortly after graduation, which I am not looking forward to, especially if I have to tell my relatives that I am unemployed and/or not graduating. This should motivate me to try harder in class, but it doesn’t. It just makes me feel crappy and not try at all. Any thoughts on surviving the next month?

—On a Very Short Fuse

Short Fuse,

You should definitely consider calming down. Really. Take a sedative or something.

Seeing as the semester is nearly over, I don’t have much advice for what you should do in terms of doing well enough to pass your classes to graduate. You could sway and woo your teachers with a tragic retelling of your awful childhood and how it affected this semester, or you could go to CAPS and get a note from them. Because if you’ve got what they call a clinical problem, well, you are at least a little bit off the hook. And don’t be picky about jobs. Get something that’s menial while you look for something better, because if you need money, you need money.

As for the family, well, become a mute.

Work hard for the money!


Dear Rachael,

My roommate goes to Pitt and just left our apartment to go home for two weeks before returning to Pittsburgh for a summer-long internship. What should I do? I’ve already run around the apartment naked while blasting Britney Spears (“Lucky,” “I Love Rock and Roll”), but I want to do more. I have so many ideas for what our apartment could become: a hookah bar, a petting zoo, a doggy day care center. But Rachael, I fear my enthusiasm is going to get the best of me — that I have so many ideas that I’ll never be able to pick just one. How can I get myself to focus and pull off two weeks of ’90s-sitcom-style hijinks?

—Home Alone

My, My, Macaulay Culkin,

What a problem you’ve got! No, really, I’m jealous, because you’re facing 14 days of pure unadulterated bliss. Bliss on, my friend!

You’ve already got all the ideas, but hey, if part of you wants to lay around in your dirty underwear watching reruns of whatever show you like for the first few days (or hell, the whole two weeks!) don’t tell yourself no. If you’re overambitious — Petting zoo? Really? — then none of your grand laborious plans will come through. If Disney movies have taught me anything, it’s to look in one special place: I mean, what does your heart tell you? (Is it saying no, but is your body saying yes? Because that’s a whole ’nother advice query.)

Best o’ luck,