Dear Quintilius,

What is the fastest way to lose weight?

Sincerely, Freshmen 15


Dear Fresher,

Be very careful what you ask for because the fastest ways to lose weight are not always the healthiest ways to lose weight. Some ways you may lose weight one month, then gain it right back in the next. Some techniques you can work hard at but turn out little to no results.

The best method to lose weight is quite frankly watching what you eat. I don’t simply mean watching it as it slides down your gullet, I mean keeping in mind the types of food and the quantities you are consuming. Sometimes we get carried away with our eating habits. Sometimes we focus on the taste of the food instead of looking for its nutritious value.

In order for to properly watch your caloric intake try to keep track of all the food you consume in a food journal or on a counting calories app. These are some highly effective methods for those who are motivated and are meticulous loggers of information. The key is being consistent with it and remembering to do it everytime you eat or drink. This can be really difficult for some people on the road or people who are always on the go. You could try to remember and log all your calroies at the end of the day, but in reality after you go home or start to relax you may completely forget about it. If you can find a time to be consistent with this method I’d recommend you do it. However eating less and more nutritious will help you lose weight but feeling better will require some exercise.

The best exercise is to find something physical that you love doing. This will atleast keep you in shape and keep your body strong. Floor hockey, volleyball, tennis, whatever keeps you entertained because when you’re doing something you like it will hardly feel like work a workout. 

All Salute The Eternal City,

Quinitilius of Rome

The Lovecraft Compendium

Imagine walking along the beach and looking upon a being beyond comprehension. A being that has been around for many millennia. One of these “ancient ones” is Cthulhu. Arguably the most popular of the Cthulhu Mythos. 

H.P. Lovecraft, a writer considered one of the most important writers of the 20th century, gave birth to a genre of fiction known as “weird horror”. His most popular stories are those of the mythical, or ancient Cthulhu. An ancient being with parts of an octopus, dragon, and human caricature.  

The main idea in the Cthulhu Mythos is what makes these stories stand out. The idea is in fact so powerful that it is almost impossible to eliminate. After all, strong ideas are immortal. One can try and commit mass genocide, or destroy all art in the world, but it will never be enough to fully eradicate the world of an idea, or to quote “ideas are bulletproof”-V. 

So, what is the idea in the Lovecraft stories that stands out like a leaf on the wind? The main idea is that, if anyone looks upon Cthulhu, they will go completely insane and delirious within a couple days mainly because they cannot comprehend the fact that such beings have been around for several millennia without ever being mentioned. Or if anyone learns anything about them, they will instantly become a target of Cthulhu and the Cthulhu cult. 

This idea makes it such that it is impossible to prove that such a thing is not real, but at the same time it also makes it difficult to prove such a being exists at all. It can make one wonder, how do we know there is not some text or book out there that when read, the reader will go completely insane? Or another example would be the “shadow test” from Doctor Who. People who did the “shadow test” killed themselves soon after because they could not accept the truth it contained.

What probably makes the Lovecraft horror stories a contender for the great literature class of books, is the fact that Cthulhu is the symbolization or manifestation of something that every life-form is afraid of. The fear of the unknown or incomprehensible. Almost every fear that someone has is the resulting fact, that the thing that is feared is something one does not understand. We fear what we don’t know. Will you go insane reading about Cthulhu? 

“An idea is like a virus.  Resilient.  Highly contagious.  The smallest seed of an idea can grow.  It can grow to define or destroy you.”- Dom Cobb.

The Major Flaw With Long Night Against Procrastination

On November 21st, the university library was open until 3:00 a.m. We all know procrastination can be a bad thing, but sometimes it can be a superpower, so the idea of being in opposition to procrastination is fine. You might be wondering then, “what is the problem then?”, the answer to this is often greatly overlooked by not just students, it is overlooked by almost everyone! What I am talking about is sleep. 

Sleep is by far the most important thing next to eating and drinking water. It is a common misconception that getting less than seven hours of sleep will not have harmful effects on your mind and body. The research on sleep deprivation has found that lack of sleep can: decrease hormone levels needed for your immune system to function properly, increase the level of cortisol, a stress hormone, which negatively affects learning and memory, increase the number of car accidents because people fall asleep at the wheel, negatively affect concentration and focus, weaken cancer-fighting immune cells and age you quicker.

That is clearly a long list of negative things just from not getting at least more the seven hours of sleep. Perhaps, you might ask why do we sleep? When we sleep, our brain tissues get restored and repaired, having proper amounts of sleep allow neurons to repair themselves, but by far one of the main reasons why we sleep, is because it helps us remember and improves our problem-solving abilities. When we sleep the brain restores and rebuilds our memories of our day’s experiences. I am sure all of us have heard the saying “sleep on it”, that is not a cheap cliché. When Dimitri Mendeleev was trying to figure out the pattern of the elements and arrange the elements in a meaningful way, he would stay up for hours on end searching for the pattern. When he finally fell asleep, he dreamt of a table of elements, and when he awoke, he solved the problem. Another example is Kukele’s Benzene ring, Auguste Kukele was trying to come up the structure for Benzene, when he fell asleep in his chair, he dreamt he saw a snake eating its own tail. This is where he got the idea of the closed ring. 

Conclusively, it is far more efficient, and effective to get proper amounts of sleep rather than study most of the night. You should try to aim for at least 8 hours of sleep every night, that way your mind and body have time to repair and rebuild. 

Here are some sleep tips to help you out: 1. Keep the room cool at night 2. Don’t eat anything two hours before you sleep 3. Take your phone out of the bedroom 4. Remove all light one hour before you go to sleep 5. Don’t take your stress and problems to the bed; think about relaxing things 6. Use a diffuser; lavender has been known to aid sleep as well as tea tree oil. And lastly 7. Stop thinking so much! Just take deep breaths and relax.

How To Make The Most Of What You Got

So you only have an inch or so article to work with but an open space that needs filler. You’re worried, societal norms tell you its embarrassing to only have this much and its even worse yet if you can’t satisfy it. Well let me tell you, you are not a lost cause, There are lots of options to fill space and make some things appear bigger when clearly they are not.

First you need to trim. Get rid of all the excess stuff you don’t need that is making your article look smaller than it needs to be. I’m not saying remove everything but something’s are not helping you. 

Second you need pictures at just the right angles. Angles of images are everything. Ever notice when you look down on something its generally small but when your looking up at something we consider it big? Find that perfect angle.

Finally just be confident. No one will notice how small it is if you just play it off or own up to it. So what its small? Its yours and you are wonderful. Life is too short to get caught up on the little things.


Dear Quintilius,

My partner thinks I’m cheating on them all because of one little incident where I had a friend over and we were both naked. How can I help them change their mind about me?

Sincerely, Not A Cheater


Dear Epitome Of Fidelity,

You obviously seem like a genuine person from the 30 words you sent me so I will offer you my best advice. It will be a step by step process to make sure you retain your partner and don’t lose them because of a one time party in your birthday suit. However this advice will only work if your partner is an idiot, which because they doubted you the first time I'm inclined to believe they’re not. But best of luck.

Alright the first thing you have to do is not get caught naked, half naked or even partially naked when around anyone other than your partner. This isn't ancient Gaul and you’re not some germanic warrior trying to frighten their opponents. You must control yourself and resist the urge to strip, even if you feel it is your calling.

Next do not lie or mislead your partner in any which way. As soon as little doubts and deceptions start taking place it is easy for assumptions to be made. Some partners have been hurt in past relationships or felt betrayed by close friends. They are counting on you and offering vulnerability by opening themselves up to you to be in a relationship. Don’t destroy their trust. 

Final thing to do is realize that trust takes time to build. When trust tries to be founded on thin ice it will often break through and leave every feeling cold and miserable. You need a solid foundation to build on and if you currently do not have that foundation, you need to find it first and foremost. Whether thats through opening up about your feelings or putting some distance between you and your friends you hang around naked with, somethings to be done.

All Salute The Eternal City,

Qunitilius of Rome


Dear Quintilius,

What should I name my Guinea Pig? He is a male, is not very sociable and appears to do nothing besides nap and eat.

Sincerely, Names Are Hard


Dear Names,

Your description sounds like you are describing a boyfriend. 

Well I guess depending on your intentions with this little fury creature, whether you decide to eat him right away or not, might I recommend some badass names. First of all would be (obviously) Romulus. You know the King of Kings, founder of the worlds greatest city and destroyer of brothers. I think Romulus would be a very strong name for you Guinea pig, maybe even perk him up to do more and better now that he has a cool name. I was going to suggest Gaius or Julius but he ends up with a bunch of blades in him and we don't want to forewarn the pet/meal of his future fate, too much foreshadowing.

Second name would be Augustus or Octavian, the first true emperor of Rome. Now keeping that in mind to achieve this level of name your guinea pig would have to win a civil war, be the reason for the death of an Egyptian queen and murder a nephew. I know its not impossible, seeing as it was done before, however it can be tedious and time consuming. Also another requirement is the loss of an entire legion in Teutoberg forest. And I don't just mean like this legion gets lost while going for a walk, I mean they lose everyone in an ambush. Difficult to pull off but if you know of any traitorous germans, it can be far more achievable.

For the third name i’m going to suggest something a little less ancient roman and more adorable. Guacamole. Names of food or objects on living creatures are almost always just wonderful. Think of ‘Socks’ the cat or ‘Pepper” the dog, ‘Ground beef’ the legless cow. All super adorable names. 

Now I know it may be difficult to choose one name but at the end of the day just remember, you are going to long outlive this animal anyways and really they don't speak english sooo… ya. Best of luck.

Bobby Fischer: My 60 Memorable Games

With the final match in world chess championship happening now as of Nov. 16, 2018, perhaps you are curious to who is the best chess player of all time. Well, that is not quite an easy answer, there is Capablanca, Fischer, Lasker, Kasparov etc. However, the best player, and possibly the most popular chess player of all time, Robert James (Bobby) Fischer (1943-2008) is probably the safest answer. At the time Fischer became the youngest chess grandmaster in history. He was 15 when he became a grandmaster. Fischer dropped out of high school at the age of 16. Despite being a high school drop out, Fischer’s IQ score was found to be 185-187, making him have one of the highest IQ scores of any person; in comparison Albert Einstein’s IQ was 160.

In his book, My 60 Memorable Games, Fischer explains why he made the moves he did in his games. He gives objective, honest, and self-critical annotations on the games, he has won, drawn, and lost. This book is like if you were watching Leonardo Da Vinci painting the Mona Lisa with him explaining why he made certain strokes along with his interpretation of each stroke. When I was reading through the games, with his analysis of the moves, along with the strongest chess engine as of today, Stockfish; excluding Alpha Zero, most of his moves are exactly what the chess engine would have played, and the strength of Stockfish can easily beat the current top chess masters. So, Fischer, was playing extremely high-level chess long before the first chess computers even existed as well as long before the internet existed.

One of my personal favourite games from the book is game 17, Bobby Fischer versus the Magician from Riga, Mikhail Tal; Candidates Tournament, 1959, Sicilian Defence. Fischer did not win this game; however, his opponent was Tal, the greatest attacking grandmaster of all time and the youngest world champion at the time; 1960. Tal was the kind of player who would sacrifice a rook on a pawn just for something interesting to happen, and in this game, Fischer made some aggressive moves against the wrong player!

One does not have to be passionate, or serious about chess to see the beauty and artistic qualities of Fischer’s chess games, nor must you have lots of chess knowledge to see the genius of Bobby Fischer himself. So, whip out your chess boards and immerse yourself into the mind of Fischer. 

Brandon University Acknowledgement Of Service: Honor Roll

Brandon University proudly marked the Armistice Day centennial, which ended the First World War, by encouraging people to reflect and remember those who went off to fight by hoisting an Honor Roll with members from Brandon College who served in the war. The display is available for viewing in the Brandon College Alcove located on the second floor of the John E. Robbins Library.

The original Honor Roll was unveiled in the College Chapel in 1915 and an extra smaller Honor Roll is displayed alongside it as a continuation of the list. Both documents note the Brandon College students who served and/or were killed, wounded, gassed or imprisoned during the First World War. 

The Honor Roll was left incomplete for almost 100 years and was re-created by Suyoko Tsukamoto as part of her Brandon College & Great War Exhibit on display in 2014. The updated list contains the names of over 500 students, staff and alumni who have been identified in the proper paper work as participants in the First World War. 57 of the students and alumni have been identified as having died while in service.

The updated Brandon College Nominal Roll is on permanent display in the Brandon College Portrait Gallery in the North Stacks of the John E. Robbins Library. To honour the fallen, the library has included a display portion of its collection of books related to the First World War. The books are on display near the circulation desk. All who go are encouraged to pause at these displays and reflect on the sacrifices made by those who serve their country in the armed forces, whether a century ago or continuing today.

Another great place to pay respects and get some further information on the CAF in the community include the 26th Field Regiment RCA/XII Manitoba Dragoons Museum on Victoria street or the Royal Canadian Artillery Museum in Shilo. There are Gunners throughout the community who would love to help people understand the military and what it is they do and why they do it, why they’ve done it and why they would gladly do it again in service for their country.

International Programming Competition

BU students, Logan Praznik, Jason Klimack and Andrii Hrytsenko took part in an international programming contest in Winnipeg and topped all other Manitoba entries at the competition. On November 3rd the group of Computer Science majors competed at a site in Winnipeg where they faced off with several teams from the University of Manitoba and University of Winnipeg, where they posted the top score at the competition. Overall the men placed 23rd out of the nearly 300 entries across Manitoba and 8 central States in the US. All three men are products of Brandon graduating high schools from either Crocus or Vincent Massey.

The ACM North Central North America Regional Programming Contest, starts with the student being given a list of 10 problems they are tasked with solving within 5 hours. All three members have to work together on one computer, at times figuring out problems together and at others working on their own piece of paper to find the solutions. The BU team was the only team to solve 5 problems in Manitoba. To give a gauge of how difficult these problems were: only 16 teams solved more than 5 of the problems and there were two problems which were not solved by any team, at any site.

Dr. Ashraf Abdelbar, a professor of Mathematics and Computer Science and the teams coach, says “The test isn’t designed to be completely solved. Part of the challenge is looking at the problems and deciding which ones you can solve the quickest, because time is also part of your score. There is a lot of strategy involved.” Praznik, Klimack and Hrytsenko have been working together for 3 years now as part of this team and have done continually better as their latest results show!  Dr. Abdelbar has taken teams to this competition for more than 15 years and has hosted several events within the community to develop skills in programming.

The programming contest itself began in Texas in the 1970’s and has since grown to involve more than 50,000 students from six continents. After the regional results are tabulated, more than 120 teams will be invited to take part in the 2019 World Finals next spring at the University of Porto, in Portugal.

Congratulations on your success gentlemen! truly amazing work you accomplished!

Fall Reading Week

This week (November 12-16) is the Fall Reading Break. A week off in the fall is a relatively new practice for Brandon University and other universities in Canada as well. The fall reading break at the University of Winnipeg was October 8-12, while the one at the University of Manitoba is the same week as ours.  

We are accustomed to the winter term Reading Week, which is very common and often a chance for students to get away somewhere warm in the cold winters but fall reading weeks are a newer creation for Manitoban, and Canadian universities. The University of Winnipeg was the first in Manitoba to offer a Fall Reading Break. It began in the 2016/2017 academic year and was meant to give students some time to de-compress and have uninterrupted study time. They ensured no teaching days would be lost by adjusting the start and end dates of their term. (http://news-centre.uwinnipeg.ca/all-posts/uwinnipeg-to-introduce-fall-reading-week/). Universities in Ontario have been holding a Fall Break for a few years now and see it as beneficial to student’s mental health. (https://www.thestar.com/life/health_wellness/2013/10/14/ontario_universities_embrace_midterm_fall_break_to_ease_students_minds.html). The addition of fall reading weeks allows for students to have a bit of a break, or time to catch up on assignments before exams begin. The creation of a fall reading week makes sense as there is one second term, so why not first term? It is a good way to keep mental health in check and keep student’s from getting burnt out during the term. Being a student is stressful on its own, and many students have part time (or even full time) jobs, extracurricular activities, families and other things that take energy. 

What does this mean? An entire week for you to do whatever you choose! Stay in the library all week and get those papers done, work a ton of extra shifts for extra money, or take some much-needed time for self-care. Whatever you chose to do with your free time, make the best of it. Personally, I will be writing my five history essays due in the weeks after the break. 


Dear Quintilius,

What is the best way to not fall asleep in class?

Sincerely, So Tired


Dear Sleepy,

Alright the best ways not to fall asleep in class, I hope you’re ready for this one, this answer is about to get wild. What it’s going to include is three poached eggs, a string of semi cooked spaghetti, a comfortably made bed, 2 camels, an alarm clock, some green tea, a good book, limited amounts of stress and distractions.

Here it is, the best way not to fall asleep in class is sleep at night. I know it sounds crazy but hear me out. If you get 7.5-9 hours of sleep you are golden. You don't even need half the shit I mentioned in the above paragraph. You do need some supplies but largely lets discuss night routine and preparation for bed.

First decide what time you want to wake up. Then chart out 9 hours before that, that is now bed time. Now that hour before bed time, no screens. Set aside 10 hours for you night routine. 1 hour for cleaning yourself, making your bed, brushing your teeth, treating your skin whatever it is you do, but stay away from your phone and laptop. Read a book, drink some tea, reflect on your day. Get snuggly in bed. Be sure that your bedroom is completely dark as you fall asleep, a little bit on the chilly side, you have some water to drink when you wake up and your alarm clock is set. 

A big thing that messes with peoples ability to sleep is stress and work. Sometimes you have to work late, sometimes you don't eat until late then you want to eat those ‘rarely’ food items, sometimes your super anxious about person A who never texted you back yet or think about that one bad thing you did 10 years ago which was at worst ‘mediocre' that literally everyone else has forgotten. It’s tough, I know. But you are important. Your mental health and sleep ability is crucial to how you feel not only in class, but in life. Don't do drugs (or at least not a lot). Do workout (or at least a little bit).

Try to keep a consistent sleep schedule. I know sometimes it has to be compromised in order to complete this one really big task but there will always be a million reasons and excuses you make yourself to tell you its ok to do this because of blank. Really what comes first and foremost is you and your health. Take care of your body and it will take care of you later on

Professor Review: Dr. Emma Varley

Dr. Emma Varley is Associate Professor of Anthropology, specialising in Socio-Cultural, at Brandon University adjunct department of Anthropology and Archeology. She is the receiver of the 2016 Brandon University Alumni Association Excellence in Teaching Award, among countless other recognitions. She is currently a Senior Associate at WISE Development and Co-Chair at the Canadian Medical Anthropology Network. Dr Varley’s research interests include Critical Medical Anthropology and Global Public Health, Violenceand Conflict, Islam and Northern Pakistan, International Development, Disaster andHumanitarian Studies; Neoliberalism, Corruption and the State, Magic and the Occult, Participatory Ethnographic Research Methods and Evaluation; among others.

I have been a student of Dr. Varley’s since 2017 and by far not only is she the most enthusiastic, kind, and gentle professor I have met at my time at BU, but also one of the few teachers on campus who use their academic credentials, expertise, and experience as activism and advocacy. Emma has for the last two decades dedicated her time to numerous humanitarian causes, primarily in Pakistan and Canada, and contributed her voice tirelessly to helping mothers and women in her community. In her Applied Anthropology class we are currently learning research methods and theories needed to use the academic field of anthropology and other social sciences through a praxis approach to solve real world problems through advocacy. An example of this would be Emma’s comprehensive research in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Northern Pakistan which she has used to advocate for maternal health in the region. Her class Anthropology of Medical Systems goes into detailed discourse regarding the human history of these medical systems that many times define peoples and communities lives.

Dr. Varley is the mother of three wonderful kids and a cat, wife to Wudood, daughter to Deborah and friend and confidante to many, and even many more. Emma is fluent in English and Urdu, likes to watch Netflix drama shows, and helped me through surviving school and acing my courses when I was going through a rather difficult time. Brandon University is very lucky to have a brilliant person like Dr. Varley among us, and we hope to have for many more long years.

The Art Of Harmony

Perhaps one of the most influential philosophy books ever written, Laozi’s Tao Te Ching has given rise to many life philosophies. While Tao Te Ching is not a long book, it still can take hours to understand the meaning behind each of the 81 poems. Even for physicists, modern physics manages to show itself within the book, with things that sound like Einstein’s theories of relativity and quantum mechanics, Laozi’s 2500-year-old book still has high relevance to today’s highly technological world.

The name “Tao Te Ching” is translated to mean the ‘classic ways of virtues”. Each line in the book, are like zen koans, which basically are unsolvable enigmas designed to break the brain, or make one think deeply about the world, nature, and reality. I should warn people who are thinking about reading Tao Te Ching because the book can make one become self-aware, in the sense that you will start to make notice of your actions and thoughts more than you normally would. After all, sometimes the most mind-bending thing is being shown yourself. 

However, the Tao Te Ching can sometimes help people discover the meaning of life, or answers to questions like “why are we here?”. To read Tao Te Ching expecting to find answers is perhaps the most common mistake. A lot of the text in Tao Te Ching is not meant to be comprehensible, nor have definite answers to the meaning of the text. The best way to read the book is to read with no end goal or purpose. Each poem can be interpreted in different ways, each interpretation depends on the individual. It really does not matter how you interpret something from this, as long as it has meaning to you. “Art is not about perfect reproduction, it is about interpretation, identity, and ideas. Reality through your eyes… Art is, a part of you.” – N.M.


“Deem ‘heavy’ as the root of ‘light’, 

Deem ‘calm’ as the leader of ‘uproar’.

Using this: sages walk all day

Without ever letting go of their heavy load, 

Even while at sublime overviews, 

Comfortably perched and transcendent.”

Review Of The Week: Extremity

Depending on your familial background, returning to university, or perhaps attending for the first time, can be a period of difficulty. Perhaps you feel that you are someone entirely different on campus, then you are when return home. Or, perhaps you have a gift, talent, or interest that is appreciated but not understood outside of the university space. For me, beginning university is a time when I struggle to reconcile who I am, who I want to be, and who I used to be, but, it also a time when I am able to express myself in a deeply satisfying way. 

In the 12-issue mini-series Extremity, writer and artist Daniel Warren Johnson, along with colourist Mike Spicer perfectly capture, albeit on a grand scale, the anxieties of personal change within the contexts of family, tradition, and belief. Based on the concepts of self-expression, tradition, and personal gifts, the premise for Extremity is simple; what if the one thing that defined you was suddenly taken away?

The story of Extremity follows Thea, a young artist of the traditional Roto Clan, who loses her arm during a violent altercation with the technologically advanced Panzina. During the battle Thea also loses her mother and the resulting conflicts threaten to tear Thea’s world apart. Who is Thea if she cannot create? How will her family mend, when Thea’s father becomes lost in revenge? Who will Thea become if she turns away from the art that defined her and towards the violence that consumes her people?  

Taking place in a world of floating islands and massive flying ships, Extremity brilliantly contrasts the power of technology with the wonder of natural beauty, within a fantasy setting. Johnson’s art, combined with Spicer’s colours, is breathtaking and spans everything from massive aerial battles and giant lumbering beast, to subtle differences between tribal communities and the soft beauty of memory. Easily one of my favourite comics in the last few years, Extremity is a deep, thoughtful, look at how the world moulds us and how the decisions we make shape the world.