Hey World, You’ve Been Gilmored: Tips for Binge-Watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix

*Starting today, July 1st, the rest of the world will be able to experience what us Americans have been able to enjoy for the past two years – the entirety of Gilmore Girls on Netflix Instant.

Obviously this is a smart move for Netflix ahead of Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life premiering later this year, but now I feel like the show’s going to have an even larger global fan base than ever before. So if you happen to be watching the show for the first time this weekend, international readers, here’s a handy guide to making it through the entire series. I made this in 2014 when GG first hit Netflix in America, so I’ve made a few updates throughout. Copperboom!*


It’s happening you guys. IT’S ALL HAPPENING. Sorry I yelled at you. Let’s make up. I’m just super excited for the recent news coming out of Netflix HQ: All seven seasons of Gilmore Girls are coming to Netflix Instant. That’s right – 153 episodes, about 6,732 minutes, and an unlimited number of pop culture references that will be available at your beck and call any time of day!

For Gilmore Girls fanatics like me, this doesn’t *seem* like it should be as important as it is. Like, I have all seven seasons on DVD and watch repeats of them on ABC Family everyday before I go to work, but still, Netflix Instant is next level. This means it’s possible to watch Dean build a car for Rory, watch Luke and Lorelai’s first kiss, and skip all the April episodes all in one fell swoop!

If you didn’t get any of those references, then you probably need to binge watch GG the moment it becomes available on October 1st. Why? Well let me tell you the brief history I have with this show. I was a late bloomer to GG, catching the repeats the first year they went on syndication right after season 5 aired in the summer of 2005. I remember becoming obsessed and even taped (yes, with VHS tapes) every single episode from TV. I eventually bought the DVDs and watched every episode multiple times, memorized lines, daydreamed about being BFF with Lorelai, or just daydreamed about being Lorelai. It was a show I watched with my group of friends that I studied abroad with, illegally streaming eps that aired in the U.S. so we could be caught up with the current season. It’s a show that I related to, where I could see myself in Lorelai, in Rory, in Lane, where sarcasm and witty quips were a fluent language and coffee is the drink of choice. It’s a show that romanticizes small town America, but still deals with realistic problems (for the most part). It’s a show that’s not just for teen girls like most assume, but for both adult women AND men. It’s a show, that at its heart, is about family, friendship and community. Most importantly, it’s a show you should be watching in its entirety come October 1st.

For the new citizens of Stars Hollow, or those who haven’t seen the show in a while and are in the mood for a good ol’ binge watch, here are some helpful tips (in no particular order) to get you through seven full seasons of one of the greatest TV shows of all time*.

*Number 43, according to Entertainment Weekly

Tip #1: Have snacks

The gals’ relationship to food is probably the longest relationship both Lorelai and Rory have ever had. They take it seriously. During Rory’s first night at college, Lorelai even organized a taste test for all the fast food places in the area so they could rate them. Also, one of the cardinal rules of the Gilmore girls is that if they’re sitting down to watch a movie or TV show, they have to have snacks. And not just one kind of snack. Like you can’t just have popcorn. You also have to have candy and pizza and Chinese take out from Al’s Pancake World. Make sure you have all your bases covered when binge watching.

Tip #2: Don’t eat all the snacks

lorelaiparadoxDon’t let these adorable Gilmore Girls fool you, they’ve trained years to eat as much as they do and still wear a size 2. That and the fact that they’re actors and probably have spit buckets at the ready. There have actually been in-depth studies on how Lor and Rory manage to eat all the crap they eat and still look thin. One person at The Huffington Post even calculated how many calories they intake in a day. It’s not pretty. So as much as you want to eat like a champion, leave it to the professionals actors.

Tip #3 Brew up some coffee coffee coffee

In addition to all the food consumption, these gals drink coffee like they breathe in air. It’s their oxygen. It’s lit’rally one of the first things Lorelai says/begs for in the pilot. Points if you get Luke’s coffee with a touch of nutmeg.

Tip #4: Be ready to pick a favorite boyfriend of Rory’s

For those who have never seen GG: yes, that’s the brother from Supernatural. Yes, that’s the dude from Heroes. Yes, that’s the lawyer from The Good Wife. Now that that’s over, Rory’s love life goes through three main boyfriends from her time in high school to the end of college. Dean (Jared Padalecki) was the first love, Jess (Milo Ventimiglia) was the bad boy boyfriend, and Logan (Matt Czuchry) was the one she didn’t see coming. All three have their own pros and cons, but for me, the one who always wins out in the end is Jess. Not just because he and Alexis Bledel dated IRL, either. Because they were *meant 2 be*. And once you’re done with the series, read this super hilarious – and accurate – roundtable discussion of Rory’s BFs.

Tip #5: Same goes for Lorelai

Listen, you’ll see throughout the course of the show that Lor has more boyfriends than local diner owner Luke and baby daddy Christopher. If you’ve watched it and for some reason pick neither (or even worse pick Jason) as your fave, your points are invalid. For Lorelai, she was always torn between who she should be with and who she wanted to be with, and really, there’s no wrong answer here. Except there is a wrong answer. Read on…

Tip #6: Pick a ship and sail with it

Sam and Diane. Rachel and Ross. Jim and Pam. Luke and Lorelai. As far as TV couples go, Luke and Lorelai are probably my favorite of all time. They’re one of the most epic ‘will they or won’t they’ couples in TV history and *spoiler alert* waiting nearly five seasons for them to get together is totally worth it. From the beginning, you could tell the man who provided the crazed woman with a constant coffee IV drip had been pining for her, and she loved him without even knowing it. Their subtle glances to each other, their inability to admit jealousy of significant others, the way they cared for each other as if they had been in a relationship all along – is what makes them the ultimate ship of all ships on this show.

Tip #7: Keep an eye out for guest stars

If you can believe it, Gilmore Girls started in the year 2000. That’s 14 years ago. Approximately the age of a current high school freshman. That means that during the show’s seven season run, a lot of actors who had cameo roles have since become much bigger stars. Take for example, the man above. You may recognize his mustache as seen on Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation, but on GG, he plays Beau Belville, a creepy relative of Jackson. Everyone from Jon Hamm to Seth MacFarlane to the guy who played Duncan Kane on Veronica Mars all show up to Stars Hollow at some point.

Tip #8: Paris Geller takes some getting used to

In the beginning, Rory’s classmate is a snobby, malicious, Heather-type bitch. It’s easy to hate on her. But trust, she will become one of your favorite characters on the show as the series goes on.

Tip #9: Soak in the magic that is Melissa McCarthy

Long before Melissa McCarthy was “Oscar nominee/Emmy winner Melissa McCarthy”, she was the lovable, bumbling Sookie St. James, BFOTB (Best Friend of the Bride). Any GG fan can tell you that Melissa was a standout on the show. Her comedic skills were beyond and I’m so happy that she finally gets to showcase it in all its glory.

Tip #10: You can visit Stars Hollow

wbtour

Yes, that’s right folks. You can actually visit the fictional town that is Stars Hollow, Connecticut. Well, okay, kind of. Two options: 1 go on a Warner Brothers tour in sunny Burbank, California, just minutes from my humble abode (Come over after, I’ll provide coffee). It depends on whether the area is being used for filming or not, but you’ll get to see the town square on said tour! Since it’s been seven years since the show ended, WB has gotten rid of the Luke’s and Doose’s signs, but the facades still stand (and are used for shows like Pretty Little Liars and Hart of Dixie). You’ll be able to see Miss Patty’s, Stars Hollow High, the church with the bells, and maybe even the gazebo! I will say that I’ve been on the WB tour THRICE and it wasn’t until the final time that I got to see the town square. Probs because I begged our tour guide and we were essentially the only Americans people paying attention.

*** Earlier this year, just before GG went into production for A Year in the Life, I took the WB tour again and managed to see Stars Hollow coming to life! Check out pix of Luke’s, the Gilmore house and Doose’s here!!!***

If you want a tour of the real Stars Hollow, the closest you can get is Washington Depot, Connecticut, where GG creator Amy Sherman-Palladino stayed and was inspired to write the show. A complete guide can be find here, and also gives details on surrounding towns that have that SH feel.

Tip #11: Question Michel’s sexuality

He’s the unfriendly concierge for the Independence Inn/Dragonfly and he never uses pronouns when it comes to significant others. He is always dressed impeccably, watches his weight to a fault, and loves Destiny’s Child and Celine Dion. You decide.

Tip #12: The fast-talking doesn’t slow down

There’s nothing wrong with your TV, those girls talk fast. Most hour-long ‘dramas’ have scripts that, on average, are 40 to 50 pages long, but the fast-paced dialogue that GG is known for would spawn across 75 to 80 pages!

Tip #13: Celebrate June 3rd

**If you haven’t seen the show and don’t want to be spoiled, don’t watch that video! But I’m about to talk about some stuff that happens, so skip ahead if you don’t want to know!

June 3rd was supposed to be the date of Luke and Lorelai’s wedding until April and subsequently Lorelai herself screwed it all up. June 3rd is also the date Rory had a date in court, and my friends and I have unofficially deemed June 3rd Gilmore Girls day. It usually includes good food, coffee coffee coffee and maybe an episode or two. Luckily, you have plenty of time to watch the entire series (a few times, probs) before the next GG holiday.

***Celebrate June 3rd next year and every year!***

Tip #14: Don’t worry if you don’t get all the pop culture references

The witty banter and references made in the show are sometimes thrown in there that you miss most of them. I love that I can watch the show to this day and still find a ref I missed before. In the DVDs (IDK if they still do this now), each box set used to come with a lexicon guide to help you understand what the characters were talking about. Even the cast admitted they didn’t get all of the references – apparently Alexis had to ask Lauren who The Waltons were at some point…

Tip #15: The finale wasn’t a real finale

When you reach the very last episode of the series, you’ll be left with a feeling of unfinished business. Like it was fine, but you also want more. This is mainly because the finale wasn’t actually meant to be a series finale. When the WB turned into the CW during the show’s last season, a lot of things got fucked up, including the fact that Amy Sherman-Palladino left at the end of season 6, which is also the reason why season 7 was kind of weird in general. Anyways, when they shot the season 7 finale, they weren’t sure if they were going to get picked up or not, so they wrote the season finale as if it could be a series finale, but also left room for the possibility of going somewhere in season 8. Because of this, fans have been clamoring for more, which is why you hear about those movie rumors from time to time. BTW, those are rumors, nothing’s happening with that. However, AS-P has said in the past that she had planned the final line of the entire series since the beginning, but because she left, we never got to find out what that was. So here’s hoping she’ll maybe spill the beans or there will be a random 2 hour TV movie that will satisfied GG fans around the world.

***Fast forward to two years later aND OH MY GOD I STILL CAN’T BELIEVE WE’RE GETTING MORE EPISODES. FIVE NEW HOURS OF LORELAI AND RORY AND I DON’T THINK MY BODY IS OR WILL EVER BE READY. What are our thoughts on the Netflix revival?? Here’s how we felt back in October, 2015 when the news broke and changed our lives forever.***

Alright kids, I think that’s enough to get you ready to binge watch one of the best shows ever. Hopefully it will live up to all the hype. And now that Dawson’s Creek is off Instant (RIP), this should probably be your go to show moving forward.

You Know What Date I’m Not Getting Married? June 3rd.

Before there’s any confusion, neither of us is getting married. Also not getting married: Season 6 Lorelai Gilmore. Why am I even bringing this up? Besides the obvious that we’re obsessed with the show? Today is June 3rd.

Yes, Lucas. June 3rd. It’s the unofficial Gilmore Girls holiday for a couple reasons. A) It’s the date Luke & Lorelai were supposed to get married. B) It’s the date of Rory’s court hearing. C) Because I Said So (see what I did there?)

In honor of Flashback Friday, I’m bringing it back to last year’s June 3rd post in the middle of our Gilmore Girls theme week. It was days before we reunited with the rest of the GG cast at the ATX TV Festival and also days before we met aforementioned Luke Danes and nearly passed out. Ok, I, Traci, almost passed out. Molly was fine.

Anyways, in addition to Luke, there were many men that came in and out of the Gilmore girls’ lives, so here are (fake) bios we made for all the gentleman callers throughout the seven seasons we were in Stars Hollow.

Gilmore Girls’ Gentleman Callers Character Bios: He’d Better Have a Motorcycle

Guys, do you know what today is? It’s June 3rd. Yes, it’s silver fox Anderson Cooper’s birthday, but that has nothing to do with Gilmore Girls Week. June 3rd – it’s the day that Rory was scheduled to go to court for the whole sex boat scandal – but more importantly, it was the day Luke and Lorelai were supposed to get married.

Alas, as you fans know, that wedding date never came to fruition, and Lorelai made sure everybody knew that during Zach and Lane’s wedding when she got a lil’ shitfaced and told pretty much all of Stars Hollow that June 3rd wasn’t happening, and doubted that it was ever going to happen.

Full disclosure – for the past few years, I’ve been ‘celebrating’ June 3rd with my friend and we usually get coffee, some kind of delish food, and maybe sneak in an ep, so basically it’s become the official unofficial holiday for the show. In celebration of (pre-breakup) June 3rd, let’s take a more in-depth look at not only Luke, but all the memorable boys of Gilmore Girls past. From Tristan to Christopher to Asher, there have been some interesting and some unforgettable men in the GG world, and today, we’re bringing them back and reminding you of just how good (or horrible) they are with a breakdown of each guy, with facts that may or may not be true (they’re all fake, these characters are not real. I know).

**Ed. note: Friendly reminder we’re heading to Austin for the #ATXFestival on Thursday, so follow us on social media using the hashtag #CandSTakeATX as we update you live panels starring the likes of GG, Bunheads, Orphan Black, Dawson’s Creek and more!!**

Dean

Occupation: Piece of human garbage

Smells like: Axe body spray, probably

Defining characteristics: punchable face, stupid hair.

Special skills: Carrying historical cannonballs, being obnoxiously tall, okay at Bop It, I guess.

Favorite Macaulay Culkin role: the little evil boy in The Good Son

Emoji that may or may not represent him as a character: 🚽

Tristan

Where is he now: After finishing his high school years at a military school in small-town North Carolina, Tristan has since settled down with his beloved wife … Mary.

Biggest secret: The “military school” thing was a ruse, he’s obviously in the witness protection program. Come on, there’s no way “Dugray” isn’t a made-up New England prep school kid surname.

Personal hero: the Ryan Philippe character from Cruel Intentions

Hobbies: Local gun club, community theatre

Jess

Fashion preferences: layered look

Food aversions: Deviled eggs

Deepest secret: Has the ability to take on superpowers of other people

Favorite book: Swan’s Way

Current occupation: Part-owner of Trunchin Books, and leads their booming e-book department. Wrote another novel called The Heartful Dodger

Most used emoji: 📚

Marty

Famous relatives: Ugly Naked Guy, third cousin of John Mayer

Bad habits: Lies when completely unnecessary, never carries any cash

Current occupation: Owns a catering company with branches in 20 cities throughout America. Still refuses to cater any party involving Logan Huntzberger.

Underused emoji: 👕

Logan

What comes up when you Google his name: Rory Gilmore Sex Boat

Recreational interests: yacht heists (possibly the wealthiest-sounding two-word combo ever)

Family history: while man is known to descend from apes, Logan’s family carries a suspicious amount of wasp DNA

Favorite Macaulay Culkin role: Richie Rich

Emoji that stings when he see it: 💍

Doyle

Current age: 21. Still. Somehow.

Biggest secret: Has been frozen in time since 1928 (see: fondness for print journalism; fear of treadmills – it all makes sense).

Favorite accessory: probably one of those old-time tickets in his bowler cap in lieu of a press pass?

Hobbies: Krav Maga, making railroad models, coming up with new dad jokes to tell his two kids with Paris.

Jamie

Un-celebrations: Took a good five years before he could fully enjoy his birthday after Paris broke up with him on his 20th.

Occupation: Works at a Washington, D.C. think tank

Current relationship status: Married to Zenon (no, really. IRL)

Asher

Current occupation: deceased

Where would he be in 2015?: Dating someone who learned about 9/11 from a very special episode of Sesame Street

In lieu of flowers: gives teen girlfriend Paris an antique printing press (posthumously)

Fashion favorite: those blazers with patches on the elbows

Favorite memory: the 1940s

Favorite emoji: 👴

Zach

Fun fact: played guitar on all of the “la las”

Favorite musical genre: Songs with girls’ names in them

Secret hobby: Writes vampire fiction

Favorite/Least favorite movie: From Here To Eternity

Most used emoji:  🎎

Dave Rygalski

Where is he now: While pretending to be a Christian guitarist, he got inspired and now is a real-life Christian guitarist in a mega church’s worship band.

Net worth: One marriage jug

Current location: Chino

Celebrity crush: Leighton Meester

Henry Cho

Photo Jun 01, 1 20 13 AM

Current occupation: still not a doctor

Relationship status: married to a Korean doctor

Jackson

Cutting the cord: Finally got that vasectomy for real after Sookie cursed him out while in labor with their child.

Career highlights: farmer, town selectman, former town selectman

Unrealized dreams: “Four in four” – unless that season 7 baby was actually twins. Yikes.

Favorite designer: Carhartt

Biggest fear: Getting caught for accidentally farming weed in ’06

Rune

Fashion inspiration: Dickon from The Secret Garden: 

Dislikes: tall women who have ears

Fun fact: has never swiped right

Most noticeable characteristic: resting bitch face

Unrealized dream: Newsie

T.J.

Occupation: Is a contractor. Well, technically, works for a contractor as an assistant, but still calls himself a contractor.

Where is he now: after the legging craze took off, T.J. became the proprietor of a successful men’s tights boutique

Hometown: Not New York, actually.

Favorite word: Escrow (pronounced: ES-kher-oh)

Kids’ names: Doula, Gary Jr.

Favorite emoji:  🔨

Young Chui

Relationship status: secretly dating Dave Rygalski

Favorite sport: Krav maga. Ironically took the same class as Doyle until he and Paris moved away from Connecticut.

Favorite food: trail mix, peanuts, potato chips, basically any sort of party food

Favorite TV shows: Jeopardy!, The Bachelor franchise

Max

Favorite pick-up location: Parent-teacher conferences; PTA bake sales

Movie he cannot watch: Runaway Bride

Current location: Went back to Stanford, tried to reunite with Diane, that lasted approx 2 months. Now teaches at Berkley, was involved with a woman named Sarah Braverman, and right when he was about to propose, she told him she couldn’t go through with it. Still looking for the “one”, but satisfied with his career as a teacher.

Fatal flaw: Not Luke

Christopher

Where is he now: After breaking up with Lorelai for good, he realized he needed to get away from Connecticut for a while and moved to Santa Barbara with Gigi. He initially planned for it to be temporary so he could move back to CT to be close to Rory, but after she got the campaign job with Obama, he decided to stay put and has lived there ever since. He met a woman who works as an astrophysics professor at University of California, Santa Barbara, and they’ve been dating for years, but are in no rush to settle down.

Movie he cannot watch: Funny Face

Weird aversion: Light-up santas, outdoor nativity scenes

Emoji he uses when feeling threatened: 👊

Fatal flaw: Not Luke

Alex

Hobbies and interests: Fishing, coffee

Where is he now: Good question. Missing person: he just sort of faded away then disappeared. Nancy Grace is on it.

Medical Marvel: Alex is immune to the effects of caffeine.

Underused emoji: 🎣

Fatal flaw: Not Luke

Jason

Nickname: Digger, The Worst

Interests: Suing people, ruining things

Pets: Cyrus, the dog, who passed away in 2012. He had the animal taxidermied. There’s honestly no difference.

Relationship status: In a long-term relationship with a woman he met while on a business trip in China. They have an apartment in New York City – they sleep in separate beds.

Emoji doppelganger: 💩

Fatal flaw: Not Luke

Luke

Nicknames: Butch, Mr. Backwards Baseball Hat

Favorite possession: Canadian mountie hat

Favorite movie: Casablanca

Secret nobody knows: He uses his “Dark Day” as an excuse to go to a reggae concert and let his ‘Jah be Jah’.

Odd quirk: Hugging people then grabbing the back of their head before letting go.

Collections of interest: Star Trek memorabilia, a box of important items from his and Lorelai’s relationship

Emoji sequence Lorelai sends to Luke most often: 🍴💖☕️

Best quality: Being Luke.

#FlashbackFriday: Modern Day Fourth of July Songs

You’re almost there, folks! Fourth of July is tomorrow, and that means not only freedom for America, but freedom from work and nearly all our responsibilities! I hope you guys have a great weekend, but to make it even better, how about a soundtrack worthy of the amount of hot dogs and hamburgs and fireworks you’ll be taking in this weekend.

In 2013, we compiled a list of our fave America-inspired and summertime-centric songs, so we’re bringing it back again for your enjoyment in 2015. Have a safe and fun July 4th, y’all!

Enjoy the entire playlist on Spotify!

Traci’s Picks:

Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen

You’re probably expecting Born in the USA. But I thought I’d throw a curveball, and also I like this song better.

Jack and Diane – John Mellencamp

This may be a little ditty about Jack and Diane (two American kids growing up in the Heartland), but apparently it’s also about the loss of innocence amongst teens. So yeah, kids in the USA go through life changing experiences, and that’s a part of American culture.

All-American Girl – Carrie Underwood

A touching tale of a boy who grows up, falls in love, gets married, and hopes for a son to carry on his football legacy, his dreams changed when he has a baby girl. An ‘All-American’ baby girl. But hey, it’s 2013, girls can play football too. Theoretically.

Summer Nights – Rascal Flatts

Fourth of July obviously means summertime, and this is a great song to play if you’re chillin in the back of your friend’s pickup truck drinking an ice cold Budwiser in the middle of a corn field. Note: I’ve never done this, I just imagine that’s what kids in the country too.

Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond

I think my thing with Fourth of July songs is that I picked songs that everyone knows. Independence day is celebrating America- One Nation, Under God, etc. etc. What better way to come together as a whole than by singing a song together that everyone knows? In saying that, Sweet Caroline personally reminds me of the Red Sox and Fenway Park – baseball, Americana, etc. And the ‘Ba Ba Ba’? Who doesn’t love a good ‘Ba Ba Ba’?

Party in the USA – Miley Cyrus

Because, America.

Molly’s picks:

America, Fuck Yeah – Team America: World Police

On the 4th of July, you will be hearing a lot of soaring, majestic numbers about amber waves of grain and there being ain’t no doubt you love this land. Fine. But I like an America that can laugh at itself. LOL jingoism.

Under The Boardwalk – The Drifters

Independence day barbecues are all about the cheerful oldies. You need to play a selection of the summery ones – whether it’s this song, Summer In The City, Surfin’ USA, Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini … whatever it takes to make you feel like Megan Draper without all the, you know, troubles.

Electric Feel – MGMT

    If I picture outdoor summer parties from the past 6 years or so, this song is always playing. I don’t know who made the rule that every 20-something’s summer party in the 2010s has to play MGMT, but the rule exists and you may as well follow it.

Summertime – DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince

    Right?! Right.

At The Beach – The Avett Brothers

    If it’s 4th of July, I need some kind of country or folksy music. It’s no wonder that the best 4th of July celebration I’ve been to was in Nashville. Something about the modern version of country/bluegrass/folk just makes me really happy to be from the good ol’ U.S. of A. So put on Devil Makes Three, or the Avett Brothers, or Father John Misty, or Old Crow Medicine Show, or whatever, and thank God that you live in America.

American Pie – Don MacLean

    Everybody knows this song, everybody loves this song, and it’s one of the best singalong tunes I know. Plus the word “American” is in it so… you know.

Camp Cookies + Sangria: This One Time, At College Camp

Here’s the cold hard truth about getting older – you default to lying only because you can’t remember. “Were you the one telling me about all your horrible birthdays? And how you think they’re ‘cursed’?” “Yeah, that was me… No wait, that’s not true. That’s Penny from Happy Endings. My birthdays are fine.”

For our summer series, we’ve talked about how we never got to go to camp as a kid – and that’s a lie. I’ve been to camp. I went to sleepaway camp for exactly one week when I was maybe 12 years old and that was it. Never went to summer camp again. I think the reason I always forget it happened was because the whole thing didn’t feel real and it was just a tiny blip in my life. Like the day I spelled ‘architect’ wrong in my 6th grade spelling bee was more memorable than my entire week at camp. Let me explain.

I went to a camp called Mindstretchers which was located at Keuka College in the tiny hamlet of Keuka Park, New York, right on the Finger Lakes (there are a bunch of lakes that look like fingers from afar, I realize how weird this sounds if you didn’t grow up in upstate NY). It was approximately an hour away from our hometown of Rochester, so it wasn’t too far that I felt like I was going on some big adventure.

I guess I always wanted to go to camp, because that’s what the cool kids did, like Lindsay Lohan on The Parent Trap, but my parents were never into it until the one year I guess they just got sick of me. But like I mentioned, this camp was at a college. I didn’t actually get that Parent Trap or Salute Your Shorts experience I had envisioned. This was like, kind of smart camp? I mean, imagine you’re like 12 years old and you get to spend a week at a sprawling campus – living in DORM ROOMS!! Shared bathrooms! Living the life, y’all.

college camp

i’m not pictured in this photo, fyi

So here we were, just a group of kids between the ages of 10 to 15 at this camp called Mindstretchers, which BTW, according to one internet poster, is described as a “camp for creative thinking and writing”. They’re not too far off. Also of note – I went to this camp so long ago, that there’s BARELY anything on the internet about it, except some dude who created a FortuneCity homepage in like ’98 and posted pix of “me and my friends at Mindstretchers camp”. Basically, I went to a nerdy camp at a college, and it explains a lot about me as an adult.

Prior to attending the camp, we had to sign up for three “classes” we would take throughout each day. One academic, one artistic, and one athletic. Here’s what I chose:

Psychology Class

legit got this from the keuka college website under the pyschology dept page. is freud all they teach there?

It was my first taste of what a real college class would be like, and I’m pretty sure it was taught by one of the poor professors who basically just needed extra money. I’m sure he wanted to take the summer off like a normal teacher. I remember this is where I first learned about Freud and the Id and anal personalities and whatnot. Something I carry with me to this day.

Acting Class

this is NOT from Mindstretchers, nor do I know these kids, so yeah, it’s a little creepy I’m using their pic

Honestly, acting class was the highlight of my day, even though we had to do those stupid circle acting exercises and icebreakers. But I was into it. Our class took place in the college’s gym, and there may or may not have been one of those multi-colored parachutes involved. I’m starting to regret not going to an all out theater camp…

Soccer

Let’s be real – I am NOT the athletic type. I was forced to pick a sport and I picked the least offensive one, based purely on the fact that one of my best friends at the time was like a superstar soccer player. First day, I was legit the only one not only without shin guards, but without cleats – I HAD PINK AND GREEN ROO SNEAKERS. So embarrassing. To me, it seemed like all the kids were friggin Bend It Like Beckham and I was Posh Spice trying to keep up. The Worst.

We even had all our meals in a dining hall. For some reason, the walk from the dorm to the dining hall always made me feel like I was an adult – an adult in college, and I felt so cool. To clarify – I was not.

Looking back, my experience at summer camp was actually more of  “traditional college” experience than my actual college one. At Mindstretchers, I took a psychology class where I learned about Freud, as opposed to my real college experience, where I wrote an entire final paper about stereotypes found in MTV’s The Real World. But also, the more I think about it, Mindstretchers maybe was just a giant ploy on behalf of the Keuka College Admissions team, attempting to lure impressionable kids with memories of summer camp in order to go to college there for real when the time came. Ugh, adults. This is all to say that it’s not like I didn’t have a good time at the camp, it was just … a thing I did one time that I never did again. That is if I remembered correctly.