Top 10 U.Va. spring Instagrams

1. The Rotunda-gram
I firmly believe that in accepting your admission to the University, you are subject to a few unspoken rules. One: to pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of Thomas Jefferson. Two: to never speak ill of a Gusburger. And three: to Instagram the Rotunda at least 14 times before graduating. One must use every single filter in existence — both on Instagram and Snapchat — as well as capture it during each seasonal occasion, be it Lighting of the Lawn or #CAValanche. It is a rite of passage for University students and you’re basically guaranteed upwards of 20 likes. Because Hoo doesn’t like to brag about some UNESCO World Heritage site architecture?

2. The “studying” on the Lawn-gram
Also fondly referred to as the “tanning-gram” or the “can you tell that my legs look vaguely darker than when I Instagrammed them on Spring Break?-gram.” Here’s a secret that’s probably not a secret: 93 percent of tan leg Instagrams contain one or more filters to give the façade of considerable UV exposure. Pictured legs are often accompanied by a Starbucks cup because, unfortunately, Starbucks Instagrams aren’t a seasonal thing, and people get just as excited to take pictures of their frappuccinos as their pumpkin spice lattes. Personally, I don’t really understand the artistic appeal of a misspelled name or some brown-ish liquid, but beauty is in the eye of the iPhone-holder.

3. The darty-gram
During the depths of winter, we often forget that weekends contain actual days and not just the hours of 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. So, when spring rolls around, students waste no time putting those lost days to use. The darty-gram — a whimsical term for “day party” — is typically characterized by a live band, a pair of sunglasses, a rooftop hangout and arm-displaying tank tops. Suns out, guns out, right?

4. The brunch-gram
The cardinal rule of brunch: it didn’t happen unless you Instagrammed it. Is it OK to let your food get cold at the expense of finding the perfect angle to capture that pancake? Is it fine to stick an iPhone in your friend’s face because their bacon egg and cheese looks a little more photogenic than yours? What about asking your waiter to arrange your waffles so they’re perfectly symmetrical and then add a small swirl of syrup, then demanding him to redo it when the swirl went a little too far to the left and ugh, can’t you do anything right?

5. The sports-gram
Now that basketball season is over, the greater University community can turn its attention to sports played on grass rather than a hardwood court. Luckily for us, we’re still good (duh) at most spring sports, so our #champion Instagrams can continue. But the sports-gram is not limited to the Division 1 athlete. They can include a casual game of Frisbee or the scenic tree-lined path of an afternoon run.

6. The 5k-gram
The University’s go-to spring philanthropy event is always the 5k run. Your friends and/or aggressive tablers on the Lawn will most likely convince/force you to sign up for at least five, so be selective with which 5k you choose to share with your social media friends. Even if you’re covered in paint, sweating, crying, still feeling it from the night before or all of the above, there’s no better time to showcase your foray into philanthropic exercise than by Instagramming yourself at the finish line. Multiple filters must be used to conceal your perspiration.

7. The nature-gram
Trees are great. They give us oxygen, which, combined with naps, are pretty much all we need to live. And, considering the default test picture for each Instagram picture is a tree, it’s almost like we’re being asked (begged, if you will) to post pictures of such a natural phenomenon. Luckily for us, U.Va. is a pretty beautiful place and many organizations really like having garden parties. If said “garden party” happens to include brunch, you can knock off upwards of four things on this list. Because what’s a garden party without brunch, flowers, a few drinks and a formal dress?

8. The Foxfield-gram
The Foxfield Instagram is an art. You must choose a picture that not only captures as much Lilly Pulitzer as possible, but also shows just how much fun you’re having and how few horses you’re seeing. Choose wisely — there is zero doubt that your entire Instagram feed will be solely Foxfield pictures for about two #tbt weeks and three real weeks after the event, so you’ll want to pick something that will stick out. For example, my roommate got into the Campus Cookies life-sized cookie suit. Chocolate chips make the best Lilly print, am I right?

9. The formal-gram
There are three stages of picture taking at a formal. First, the ‘getting ready’ phase. This often occurs with half of your makeup/outfit and a fraction of your sanity on display. Second, the ‘I found my date and we look vaguely cute and we’re still standing upright’ phase. These are often taken in a field of some sort, with the sun setting in the background. Last, the selfie phase. This is usually post cocktail hour, employed to pass the time while waiting for dinner after you’ve drunk-eaten all the bread. I’d recommend Instagramming something taken during Phase 2, as no one will be able to tell that you woke up the next morning still in your dress clutching a box of Christian’s pizza.

10. The library-gram
Probably soon be replaced by the “why is there a piece of the Berlin Wall in front of Alderman but who cares I still hate studying-gram.” An ironic shot of some inspirational quote in a Clemons booth, a lonely shot of the empty stacks in Alderman, a hateful shot of someone chewing really loud in the silent area of Clark or even a desperate selfie trying to get some work done. Finals are coming, which means midterms are still happening and papers are all due on the same day. Similar to a night out, it is unwise to Instagram after having two or more drinks (in this case, we’re talking coffees). Put the phone down, and hit the books. Instagram will be there when you get back.

Published April 6, 2014 in Life

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