Editor's Note: Ask Eric is an advice column published every Tuesday. Anonymous questions are taken from this Google form. Questions are also taken from both The Collegian's Instagram, @thecollegianur, and via email, collegianaskeric@gmail.com. 

Hello all,

I am sitting here, staring at my computer screen as I try and think of a fun way to start my column for the week. Perhaps unsurprisingly to everyone who knows me, I am not funny, as my humor usually centers around bad puns at which even the oldest of dads would groan. So, creating an entertaining column can be challenging. 

However, I find that if I look at my computer long enough, some force takes pity on me, and I can start writing. Why does it work this way? Who knows, but I like to believe this is how I use up all my good karma. This also explains the fact of how I trip on my own feet so often, but that is neither here nor there. So now, let’s get to the questions.

What should I change my name to?

I am a fan of mythology and old names. Obviously, the best name is Eric, one of the famous bearers being Eric the Red, the Viking who purportedly first settled Iceland. The Roman Emperor Octavian, later known as Augustus, is another good choice. These two can also be used as names for women by simply changing them to Octavia or Augusta. For myths, Gilgamesh is a good one, though perhaps it sets one up to too high a standard considering the mythical Gilgamesh was half god. Hera was the Greek goddess of marriage and the family, so I find her important. If you are more interested in a fighter name, Athena is the goddess of wisdom and war and my personal favorite of the Greco-Roman pantheon. 

These are just a couple of names that I have thought of, but there are many other exciting names I could choose. Other parts of the globe have many different mythologies to draw from, but I am most familiar with the European ones, so that is where I tend to take ideas. So, in summary, naming yourself after a god will give a confidence boost.

Who advises the adviser (you)?

This depends on what you mean by advising. If you mean academically, then it is Dr. Yanikdag in the history department and Dr. Pollock in the biochemistry department. Dr. Yanikdag also gives me advice from time to time on how I should better take care of myself, such as cutting back on caffeine (which I have not done). 

For life advice, I have a rather large family, so I have to pick of all of them. I tend to go to my older sisters rather often, I have three of them, and most of the time, their advice is invaluable to how I live my life. I credit my sisters heavily with turning me into the man I am today.

I go to my parents for advice rather often, even if it something they know nothing about. My parents, probably like all parents, also seek me out to advise me when I did not ask, but that is also helpful, so I cannot complain. I also talk a lot to my girlfriend and her family, whom I have known since eighth grade, so they can usually ground me when I am losing track of what Eric would want to do.

Favorite Pokémon?

I would have to say that my favorite Pokémon is Charmander. It was a starting Pokémon for one of the first video games I ever played, so it has significant emotional value to me. Second, Charmander is adorable, and I am a sucker for things that are small and cute. Finally, Charmander evolves into Charizard, which I always thought was a very cool Pokémon as well. There is just something about having a literal dragon as a pet that has always appealed to me, so Charmander stands above the rest in terms of Pokémon for me.

Well, that is all for this week. I am super happy that I got a bunch more questions since my last column. This means that I can still write this column every week, and I hope that you all enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it. As always, if you have a serious problem, please contact Counseling and Psychological Services. I hope to keep hearing from you for next week’s column.

Sincerely,

Eric Bossert