Bwog sent Lookin’ and Feelin’ Good Specialist Sarah Camiscoli to Ricky’s to get the ultimate opinion on Columbian fashion and some advice on how to look and feel, well, good.

Now that anxiety of midterms has transformed into dread over future GPAs, the Halloween hangover has subsided, and fall break has brought salvation, students are looking for a fresh, new start to last them until winter vacation. To initiate this turnover, I wanted to focus on the basics of lookin’ good and feelin’ good. But getting students to understand this sort of change would require some professional help.

The solution? Get to Ricky’s. Whether it’s giving advice on back-to-school hairstyles, advising ladies on which storybook character will be most appealing for Pike’s Halloween bash, or simply just observing students meandering around the store taking a misplaced mental health break, Ricky’s personnel are among some of the most well-acquainted community members with the do’s and don’ts of Columbia’s many exterior states.

At first, Ricky’s personnel were hesitant to give their thoughts about the student population. This could have been a result of my obvious haggardness, but hey, it happens. So to avoid a conflict of interest, I took a less personal approach and asked one particular lady to rate how good Columbia students appear to be lookin’ and feelin’ as of late. She simply responded, “Overall, about a six.” But when I asked her what brought down the average student, she unleashed. “Honestly, a lot of them just walk in here looking like they just rolled out of bed. Flip-flops, sweat pants, hair all over the place. They look like they didn’t even have the time to look at themselves before they walked outside. I mean really, breathe.” When asked to cite a specific example of such unsightliness, she recalled, “About a week ago some girl walked in here with some real weird ideas. Real weird. She was wearing a bubble coat and a pair of shorts. I thought to myself ‘Did you really walk out like that today?'” When I burst out in laugher, I quickly realized that she did not find this amusing at all. She simply replied, “Real weird.”

So, to salvage any hope Columbia may have, what are the basics? “Honestly, just relax. The world is not coming to end. Take a deep breath and just give yourself a minute to look in the mirror before you walk out the door. Really. Everything is going to be fine. You can check yourself before you leave.” The rest of staff didn’t have anything in particular to add except to “just please stop wearing flip flops in the rain. I know your damn feet are cold.”

For professionals, then, lookin’ good and feelin’ good isn’t about a particular product or style. It’s simply about giving yourself a second to breathe and to keep in mind that you are actually in public for most of the day. So, if nothing else, “check yourself.” Relax. And if at some point you do feel like treating yourself to a product from Ricky’s, make sure you’re not wearing faux fur (or, even worse, sandals in the winter). The reception may not be so warm.

Sarah Camiscoli