This blogger prefers the tortoise brown sunglasses that provide her with an air of mystery.
My fellow students, I think it is safe to say that spring has finally sprung.
After what seemed like weeks of polar vortexes and impending snowstorms, the temperatures in Knoxville are finally warm enough to walk around campus sans the winter coat you've worn nonstop since winter break.
With this week's beautiful weather came a belated reemergence of the shining sun, which – let's be honest – can be a little annoying when you just spent an hour and a half in a dark lecture hall. After so many weeks spent below the gloomy Knoxville sky, it's difficult to adjust to the suddenly bright and overwhelming sun that spring is now providing us with.
This is where sunglasses come in.
When I was attending high school in South Florida, one of the sunniest places in the nation, I would make a point to notice my fellow students who wore sunglasses to school. Of course, it was high school and everyone makes decisions they regret during the four-year span; whether it's wearing a pair of fake Kanye West shutter glasses or wearing tie-dye pants because you DIY-ed them with your friends the weekend before. Then I considered the environment; the majority of your time in high school is spent indoors, and you don't really see much sunlight throughout the day. Why would you wear sunglasses to school?
I continued to ask myself this question when I began my freshman year at UT. I noticed that many students wear sunglasses, which made sense because the sun can be extremely intense and invading when you're trying to walk to The Hill from Pres Court, especially during the warmer months.
Plus, our campus is by no means small or compact. If you're a freshman or a sophomore, you're almost guaranteed to be doing a lot of walking since your basic GenEd classes are so spread out. It's a pretty basic decision to wear sunglasses when walking on campus, either you squint your way to Hodges or you enjoy your walk and view the world through tinted frames.
So it's established that sunglasses on campus are a thing on UT's campus. But are they a style thing?
Sunglasses come in all shapes and sizes: from completely black ones to tortoise frames with black lenses to round frames with reflective lenses that are tinted blue. Everyone's bound to have a different preference of sunglasses – and hopefully it's not the Bono-esque sunglasses because those have got to go. Also, sunglasses have a reputation of making their wearers mysterious and therefore cool, hence covering your eyeballs with something so people can't, well, "look you in the eye."
Yes, UT students wear sunglasses. But why do they wear sunglasses? Is it simply just to evade the sun's overwhelming rays? It is out of habit? Do you wear them as a fashion accessory that you feel adds personality to your style? Or are you Bono and you wear them every day just because?
From students I've passed by on campus, there's really no telling. I've seen aviators on guys in suits, guys in tanks, girls in wayfarers in dresses, girls in round sunglasses wearing track shorts and even bright sunglasses on dogs.
Maybe it's just a college campus thing. Maybe it's just a sun thing. Or maybe I'm just thinking too hard about it.
Melodi Erdogan is a sophomore in journalism and electronic media. She aspires to be a fashion writer for a major magazine or newspaper. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @melodierdogan.
Students enjoy evading the sun with sunglasses.
A completely black pair donned by a male student.
This student paired a green and white striped blouse with brown aviators adorned with gold accents.
Round is the way to go for this female student leaving the Communications building.