Category Archives: Blog

Swollen Symptoms of a Different Sign

Dear Bailey,
During my last period one of my breasts became swollen and tender. I’m not pregnant so is there something wrong with me?

No, there is nothing wrong with you. This is completely normal and it is fairly common. One or both breasts will become heavy and tender before or during a woman’s menstrual cycle. This is called fibrocystic breast change. They are believed to be caused by all those crazy hormones that are telling your body to “get milk ready for a pregnancy!” (This is just because an egg is passing through the fallopian tube, not because you actually are.) These symptoms can also fluctuate throughout time.

Sometimes the breast may have lumps which are not always a sign of breast cancer especially when they appear only during this time. They do make it difficult to detect a lump that may be breast cancer so self examination shortly after your menstrual cycle is a good idea. This is not a diagnosis and if you have a major concern about it you should see a doctor.

To help with the painful symptoms try taking a pain pill or buy a bra with more support for those oh-so special days. If that doesn’t work talk to your doctor about diet changes. Getting on birth control may help as well.

Bailey/Advice columnist
Bailey can be reached at

Change Wins Big

Well, the election results came in. They went the exact way most of us expected them to go: with Rachel Coffey handedly claiming victory.

Rachel Coffey winning was completely unsurprising in my mind. As far as I know, the election was marred by dissenting students expressing frustration on the current regime. I don’t think Katie Patterson ever really had a chance.

As the current vice president, she bore the brunt of the criticism of everything currently going on with senate, which isn’t exactly a compliment. Add in the fact that she wasn’t doing much to distance herself and the outcome seemed almost guaranteed to be unfavorable for her.

Being in the public eye didn’t exactly help her in this case. All Rachel Coffey had to do was walk up to the debate podium with a mantra of change and a new plan to be miles ahead. It was almost impossible to put a negative spin on it, given the current image shown by Senate. The less than half of the school that cared enough to click a link voted overwhelmingly to endorse a candidate brimming with new ideas, one that had been championed by the Linfield media from the beginning.

I’m sorry Katie Patterson, but you were in trouble from the beginning. This year made people stop paying attention and those that did were not exactly your biggest fans.

Congratulations to Rachel Coffey for once again trying to start over.

Matt Olson/Columnist
Matt Olson can be reached at

ASLC Senate meeting — March 3, 2011


My Drum, My Beat. And I’m Not Marching.

Looming graduation

[For the record, this was only supposed to be about 150 words. I'm a simple man with complex tastes]

Looming graduation

"I won’t suddenly lose all chance at happiness if I ignore the plan I’ve been following for years and years."

I might be really stupid.

I’m not even sure I can rationalize this at 2 a.m.

I’m sitting in my apartment as college senior doing exactly what everybody else is not doing: nothing. Most college students will walk out of Linfield with a plan and a degree in something the world respects, while I’m gonna be dragging my feet and muttering something about intangibles.

Truth is, I haven’t quite made up my mind what I’m doing yet.

College was for me a very natural choice planned from the beginning in the same way high school was. I’m here because I didn’t really have any other choice. With expectations comes success, and with success comes more expectations. Nobody hoped I would be here; it was assumed. I couldn’t suddenly decide I wanted to move to Texas and wrangle cows. Or become a bus driver. Those jobs would be below my life ceiling. I would be missing out on something “greater”. I’ve been trapped in the cycle of the American dream my entire life, one of money and happiness and prestige and oh so many expectations.

Be the best to become the best.

So from the beginning it’s been school school school. Need to reach that peak, hit that ceiling, conquer that mountain. Phase one was filled with preparation for phase two, college, where I began to prepare for the career and family phases. It’s a rigid system that’s been rammed into my head since the beginning, a thirty year plan aimed at fulfilling one’s own soul.

What they don’t tell you is that failure can push you forward just as strongly as success can. I wouldn’t have burst into flame if I’d dropped out of college or rejected that job offer. I won’t suddenly lose all chance at happiness if I ignore the plan I’ve been following for years and years. It took me a long time to realize just how stuck within the system I was, so afraid I might not be all I can be. Turns out it was me trying to be all they think I can be. And that’s just not the only way. I think I’d rather just jump off this train and walk to happiness.

So I’m not going to make a plan for after college. I’m going to take everything I’ve learned and see where it takes me. And I’ll get the satisfaction of knowing that I carried myself there, which is way more important to me than being pushed into being something I never felt I had a choice about. I believe my happiness should never be contingent on somebody else’s expectations.

A lot of Americans would call that really stupid.

Matt Olson/Columnist
Matt Olson can be reached at

The first day of class gets to everyone-college students included

I was in class with a glazed look on my face when I noticed that the majority of the people around me were taking notes.

I was surprised.

Why? Because the material wasn’t from the book or anything, it was the syllabus in PowerPoint form. Nothing to warrant nervous scribbling and incessant note-taking, right?

It was nuts. Everyone around me working feverishly (for nothing, mind you) like little worker ants building their homes. I stopped laughing in my head long enough to be thankful that although I will be walking straight into another one, I am happy that it’s only a matter of time before I leave this one.

I wonder what it is that makes students act like that?

Is it school or going to college that makes us feel like we’re going to miss something?

Septembre Russell, Copy chief
Septembre Russell can be reached at