One sky. It is just one sky, but of course it doesn’t look like that because it goes from misery-inducing, dust-under-your-desk grey to misery-inducing, dull blue to just black. Or, on a day when it is not winter, it might actually look nice. But today is winter. (Technically it’s fall, really. But it feels like winter.)

Two buses. One in the morning and one in the afternoon to arrive at and return from school. But it might be the same bus by chance, if the driver decides to change routes and go backwards for the fun of it. Then the driver gets fired, also for the fun of it. Where do buses even go when they’re done with their routes?

Two classes. Your day could easily do without them, but they’re there whether you like it or not. And, to be fair, they’re not that bad if you ignore your grades. Which is what you come face-to-face with when the classes end. But they can be easily ignored if you just look away. Not by universities, though. But you can also just not think about those.

One phone. Remember the part about ignoring your grades? This is the key ingredient. Fairly self-explanatory. Use this ingredient liberally, at all opportunities, and at any moment in which you are doubting what to do next. Unless you have three unfinished assignments to hand in by 12 am.

Three unfinished assignments to hand in by 12 am. It’s your fault for not doing them earlier, and you know that, but what is that knowledge supposed to make you do? Stop hating the assignment? It just makes you hate it more. But you do it anyway, because you have some self-preservation. Or maybe you don’t, also because you have some self-preservation.

A healthy dose of self-preservation. In any aspect, really. You can have some self-preservation in terms of your health or your mental health or your future or anything—as long as you have some sort of self-preservation for yourself. Everyone has a bit of this. Even if you don’t think you feel anything anymore. Because you surely don’t like the feeling of not feeling anything, which means you have self-preservation for your emotions. Even if said self-preservation doesn’t seem to be helping you.

At least half of a friend. And you might be thinking, how do you have a fraction of a friend? But sometimes you don’t want to talk to a friend and sometimes you don’t have a friend, and everyone needs a friend, so you can find a friend in the things you like to do. But your hobbies can’t talk to you—only you can talk to them—hence them being half a friend. A whole friend is strongly recommended. Or more. But sometimes that is out of your control, so at least half a friend would be nice.

24 hours. This is the final ingredient. Also, it’s there whether you like it or not. It’s actually more noticeable when you don’t like it, so have fun with that. Maybe it feels dizzying that after this 24 hours is another 24 hours and another 24 hours and another 24 hours. But it is also hopeful that after this 24 hours are another 24 hours, and another 24 hours, and another 24 hours.

Photo: Suzy Hazelwood on