University of Colorado seniors Alaina Rouse and Alyssa Oligmueller are preparing for the stress of finals and graduation, and like most students, they’re hoping the combination of coffee and procrastination will get them through.
Coffee and Procrastination is a blog that the duo started about a month ago on the blog-hosting site Tumblr. The pair posts GIFs — looped animations — they find online and write funny captions expressing things they’ve experienced, usually pertaining to college life.
The seniors said they’ll be chugging plenty of the caffeinated beverage over the next several days, and they’re hoping blogging will give them a release from their stress, helping them cope with the chaos of their final days of college.
“It helps me to see the humor in things that would be stressful and takes the bite off,” Oligmueller said. “With finals and graduation coming up, I think it’s going to provide some much needed laughs.”
Oligmueller said they’ve been talking about starting a blog together since August but wanted to make sure they had a relevant and catchy topic before they went all in. Earlier this spring the students were looking at whatshouldwecallme.tumblr.com, which also reuses GIFs, and thought they could do the same.
Tumblr is full of blogs that use GIFs in a similar way, but the students said the key to success is finding a niche that connects with a specific demographic — in their case college students and young adults.
“We blog about roommates and studying and working in a coffee shop and searching for jobs — you know, college stuff,” Rouse said. “You can tell how we’re feeling that day based on what we post.”
A Monday post had an introduction that read “when my roommate’s boyfriend doesn’t use his inside voice” followed by a GIF from a Harry Potter moving screaming over a caption that says “SHUT UP! SHUT UP!”
Posts like this require two bloggers, the women said.
“That way we can put things about our roommates on there but then tell our roommates that the other one wrote it,” Rouse said. “We’re never trying to offend anyone and usually we’re making fun of ourselves and not other people, so I don’t think anyone ever gets upset.”
“Those are the kinds of things we wanted to put out there, though, because everyone can relate,” she said. “I mean who hasn’t had a bad roommate at some point?”
The women said they publish about 10 posts per day, which over the next few weeks will mainly be about finals and post-graduation experiences, like moving back home.
A post on Wednesday morning read “the last week of classes” above a GIF of Peter Griffin, the animated character from TV’s “Family Guy,” sitting at a school desk talking with a caption that reads “OH. MY. GOD. WHO. THE. HELL. CARES.”
The bloggers said that post is universal for students.
More than 500 people follow the blog, and they average about 1,000 hits per day, they said. About 100 of the followers are from the Boulder area, and the rest seem to be college students from around the world, including significant followings from students in Virginia and Europe.
One of the bloggers alludes to having a crush on movie star Ryan Gosling and has created a page that presents only posts related to “The Notebook” leading man.
One post reads “if I ever see Ryan Gosling (#4)” — there are multiple posts with a similar title — followed by a GIF of a woman tackling a man to the ground in a park.
Other category pages include “all the single ladies,” “food” and “favorites.”
As the students prepare to leave CU next week with their degrees and move on to the next phase in their lives, they’re hoping the blog will keep them connected.
“We’re just having so much fun and we’re excited that other people are enjoying it too,” Rouse said. “I mean, who doesn’t need a good laugh a few times a day.”