With social media these days, it’s pretty easy to project the perfect picture of yourself to the world. Your Instagram only showcases pictures of you ~candidly~ laughing or an artistically angled shot of your Original Grain acai bowl. You’ve spent months — even years — perfecting your aesthetic with VSCO filters and killer captions.
But, there’s a small, painfully authentic part of us all that we only show to a select few, perhaps our roommates and best friends, or anyone lucky enough to see us in Bird four days deep into midterms week; the entirely unedited mess that many college students know they truly are on some level, even if it’s deep, deep down.
What better way to understand who you really are as a person than by looking at the most unfiltered representation of yourself? Imagine you had to empty your trash can out onto the quad for every passerby to see. What would they find? But more importantly, what do the items in your trash can right now say about the person you are?
Let’s talk trash.
Empty Domino’s boxes
This semester you promised yourself that you’d eat nothing but healthy, home-cooked meals, and you really tried. Sorta. Anyway, it’s October and honestly, if you remember to eat three meals a day at least four times a week then that’s a win all in itself. And pizza sauce is technically a vegetable right? No? Oh well, you’ll try to do better next semester. Or the one after that, or the one after that…
Crushed Keystone Light cans and Juul pods
These are the male equivalent to empty PSL cups and Sephora receipts. You probably spent most of this week sleeping through class and taking the edge off last night’s hangover by adding another lukewarm can of Keystone to the overflowing pile next to your unmade bed. When you do decide to brace the sunlight, you’re easily spotted by the cloud of vape smoke that follows you around campus. And, if you ever go missing, you’ll instantly reappear if someone repeats the words, “do you even vape, bruh?” three times in a row.
This could mean one of two things about you:
- Used condoms in your trash mean you’re getting laid, so props. And on top of that (or bottom, whatever you prefer), you have your life together enough to be responsible.
- Unused condoms in your trash means maybe you’ve had them lying around for so long that they’ve expired. Or, maybe they’re perfectly fine, but you seem to have unintentionally taken a vow of celibacy and, at this point, you’re ready to steer into the skid and give up on your sex life entirely. If this is the case, we’re rooting for you, and hoping that you find someone to climb up on and out of your rut.
Unpaid parking tickets and/or crumpled syllabi
You’re probably an “out of sight, out of mind” type of person. Who cares that you parked on the wrong side of Euclid three times last week and racked up $120 worth of parking fines? That’s Future You’s problem; Current You would much rather spend that money on the important things, like Chipotle burrito bowls and weed. Are all your friends stressing about upcoming exams? Not you, your exam schedules are buried deep in your trash, right alongside your dignity and that to-do list you made but never actually finished. Or started. But, you work well under pressure, and what could be more exhilarating than showing up to class for the first time all semester and having an exam placed in front of you?
No trash can at all
You like to live a little recklessly, and your living space probably reflects this. Your room is scattered with random food wrappers, hairballs from your hairbrush, an empty handle of Svedka, and a number of other things that your roommates every so kindly pretend not to notice. If you can get away with being this much of a total slob, you probably have a kick ass personality; the party seems to follow you wherever you go. So, push the used tissues and old plastic silverware off your desk, pull out the shot glasses, and keep doing you.