A Starbucks brand IV drip hangs full of coffee. Illustration by Maya Winshell.

Finals Win! Caffeine is Here to Keep You Alive

The Backdoor is a work of fiction and humor.

IT’S THAT TIME of year again when finals are almost upon us! Term papers, capstones and theses have already hit like a truckload of Barnes & Noble’s overpriced textbooks. The campus smells like flowers and the tears of the weak, and it’s a beautiful day that you can only enjoy by dissociating next to a window in Watzek.

Whatever’s on your plate at this point in the year, you definitely can’t do it unassisted. Sacrificing a few hours of sleep won’t cut it at this point; be honest, you’ve dug far too deep a hole for that kind of novice coping. It’s time to bust out the big guns, Ol’ Reliable herself: caffeine.

Whether you suck down three French presses a day, or just a cup of green tea every now and then, LC students love hitting the world’s most popular drug. As a huge proponent for pointless ingenuity as well as procrastination, all of us here at the Backdoor want to make sure you’re fully equipped to balance cheating death and saving your GPA using everyone’s favorite stimulant.

Students have become more vocal about the need for supplementation.

“The crippling pressure from my family, friends and professors is usually enough to keep me motivated,” Rudi Bench ’19 said. “I just need fuel in the tank.”

Caffeinated beverages are most people’s go-to. Every variation of coffee, tea and energy drinks under the sun can and will be copiously ingested in the next couple of weeks. But you can always do better: why slap a bag of Franzia when you can slap the Bon coffee thermos? Why sip a Red Bull when you can shotgun three?

“I’m halfway through a month-long Tea Chai Te ban for ordering eight large bobas a day for three consecutive days,” Budith Jutler ’20 said. “I have an entire wall of my room decorated with used punch cards.”

If you think drinking caffeine is the only way to get that burst of energy, you’re a dumbass! During finals, you have to get creative. Using coffee grounds as dip or vaping espresso concentrate is going to hit a lot harder than nicotine, and are great low-volume ways of rapidly ingesting a stupid amount of caffeine. Smoking rolled yerba mate leaves is very on brand for the more 420-inclined that can’t afford to chill during finals. Similarly, you can usually find a group of vegans snorting organic matcha powder with a reusable stainless steel straw off the Maggie’s coffee table. If you mention how great Peter Singer is, they might let you bump some.

There are ways to be covert about your chemical dependency. The ink chamber of a pen is a great place to sneak caffeine pills into an exam. A Camelbak backpack can easily be converted into an intravenous yerba mate infusion with a simple butterfly needle and creative use of electrical tape.

Don’t forget to relax and take time for yourself during this crushingly difficult time.

“I practice self-care by having a spa night,” Jana Goodman ’22 said. “It usually consists of a coffee grounds scrub and moisturizing with caffeine peptide creams. I finish with a face mask made of crushed caffeine pill paste.”

Whatever your method, may your GPA soar as high as your caffeine buzz, and may viewing your transcript hurt less than your impending withdrawal headache. Happy caffeinating!

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