Expression comes in many forms, including laptop stickers

Let your laptop stickers speak for you.

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Humans seek outward expression, especially young college students who are finding their way. Tattoos have always been a way for individuals to do so. Many adults and college students mark themselves with meaningful (and sometimes not-so-meaningful) ink. But in this technology-driven age, there is a way to express yourself a little less permanently: Just cover your laptop in stickers.

Laptop stickers, like tattoos, are a way for people to creatively show their personality and tell their story. Tattoos can turn an arm into a masterpiece, and stickers prevent boring, blank laptops from being at every study spot on campus.

“Freshman year I got a laptop, got a case and started ordering stickers right away,” MU sophomore Beth Melaniphy said.

Melaniphy joined many of her friends who covered their laptop in stickers and began to express her sense of humor with her choice of stickers that featured The Office, a cutout of Grey’s Anatomy character Cristina Yang and multiple cutouts of the Kim Kardashian crying face.

“I like my Kim Kardashian stickers,” Melaniphy said. “It’s her crying, and it’s all her weird faces, so I think it’s really funny.”

I also get a kick out of some of the stickers I see on the many laptops propped open in the Student Center. It’s interesting to see who has the funny ones and who has the meaningful or mysterious stickers that you have to figure out. It gives many people a chance to learn about someone and their interests without interrupting their work.

Alex Hancher is an MU junior from Texas, and you wouldn’t even have to listen for her accent to find out; all you have to do is see her Texas-shaped sticker on her laptop.

“[My favorite one] is the Texas sticker because I’m from Texas,” Hancher said. “It’s really worn-out because I’ve had it the longest.”

Besides college being a time of learning how to express who you are, it’s also a time of free stickers. Many groups and organizations hand them out as a way to promote themselves.

Although my laptop isn’t covered in stickers, I was handed multiple stickers my first week at MU. It’s a good way for clubs or organizations to promote themselves because they all know that by handing out free stickers, they are getting free advertisement on the back of students’ computers.

“Every single one of these [stickers] is something that I’ve done since getting to college,” Hancher said.

I don’t know if the sticker craze will ever fade, but for now it’s a good way to celebrate who you are and make the device many people use every day a little more personal and expressive.

“It’s a good way to make something kind of boring exciting,” Melaniphy said.

It also could be difficult to leave this trend even if you have already jumped on the bandwagon. They aren’t tattoos, but that doesn’t mean they don’t stick.

“They’re pretty stuck on here for a while, so I think I’m going to keep them,” Hancher said.

Edited by Claire Colby | ccolby@themaneater.com

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