Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Houseparties music preview

Never heard of some of the bands playing at Lawnparties this week? Yeah, us either, or at least we forgot them a while ago. That’s why ‘Street’ has turned to Adam Tanaka ’10 (and YouTube) for a preview of what you can expect on Sunday.


New Found Glory –

Wow. A has-been pop-punk band playing Lawnparties? Who’d-a-thunk. Well, at least this year we’ve got someone who’s been on the charts this millennium; last time I checked, Everclear didn’t qualify in that department. New Found Glory (who will be performing at Quad) might ring a bell for its obnoxious 2004 hit “All Downhill From Here;” or maybe because your 13-year old brother’s rocking out to its beats in his bedroom. “Rolling Stone” describes the band as “simple.” says “it's difficult to find new things to say about bands like New Found Glory.” But a reviewer on calls them the “first band [he] ever fell in love with,” full of “pop-punk goodness”! Either way, expect tattoos, “attitude,” loud guitars and really whiny singing. Yeah!

Howie Day –

“You and I collide…” If you recognise this lyric, remember a bland, vaguely likeable slice of pop/rock, and want to listen to a musician with the awesome name of “Howie Day” (is he looking for Bowie comparisons or what?) then Quad might be your safest bet. Or, join Carol Dreibelbis ’11 in boycotting him: She says Howie Day is “so bad I change the radio station when he comes on.” You go girl! Show some attitude!


Eve 6 –

Oh my gosh. TWO has-been pop-punk bands playing Lawnparties?! Something strange is happening here… But at least New Found Glory is still releasing records. Because according to, Eve 6 was dropped by their label, RCA, in 2004, and “announced they would be calling it quits” that same year. So what they’re doing here is anybody’s guess. Anyway, Karen Azani ’11 will be at Colonial supporting them. She “really like[s] that song ‘Tonight.’ Or maybe ‘Night.’ Or ‘Here’s to the Night’? I mean, it has the word ‘night’ in it. It’s a good graduation song.” I think you should take her word for it.

Sister Hazel –

Sister Hazel, who will be playing at Cloister, has been described as an “acoustic jangle pop band.” However, after listening to a few of their songs, I would say that Sister Hazel don’t really sound anything like your typical jangle pop bands; certainly anyone trying to compare them to the Smiths or R.E.M. is deaf, or very stupid. The Eagles, Hootie and the Blowfish, and bland country rock are the more obvious influences here, with a hackneyed sound pitched halfway between pub rock and alt-rock. Sister Hazel does have a bald singer though, so it does have something in common with R.E.M.! Expect a rendition of their big single, “All For You” – not to be confused with Janet Jackson’s 2001 hit of the same name.

Gonzo’s Nose –

This band is called Gonzo’s Nose. It’s a cover band. With the trend of this year’s line up, they’ll probably be doing repeated renditions of “American Idiot,” with maybe a bit of Fall Out Boy thrown in to spice things up. Or maybe the band got lost at Charter on the way to a seven year old’s birthday party. Who knows, with a name like Gonzo’s Nose, we might be in for group renditions of “Baa Baa Black Sheep.”

Ruby Suns –

Oh my lord! A band that formed less than five years ago is coming to Lawnparties? Well, it must be playing Terrace then. Combining sweet, psychedelic pop sounds with world music — which seems to be all the rage right now — the New Zealand-based Ruby Suns has been described by, in typically verbose style, as “nibbling at the edges of unfamiliar sounds.” Someone I know calls them “really, really good.” I don’t know who to trust. But I’ll be there, because the cover of their latest album has lots of nice, happy, bright colors on it. And nice, happy, bright music is good for a sunny Sunday. Let’s just hope it’s sunny. If not, you can go shed emo tears with New Found Glory…

The Walkmen –

Positively grandparents compared to the Ruby Suns, the five-piece Walkmen will also be playing Terrace on Saturday. Apparently nothing to do with the late-80s portable tape player, The Walkmen play a brand of scruffy, guitar-heavy indie rock that’s been compared to The Strokes and Interpol. And with their pared-down, aggressive sound, that’s not surprising. What’s stranger is that someone once compared the band to U2. That person was very silly.


Nothing but a number: Referendum

These are the results from the referendum. You can scroll down to the bottom if you haven't deleted the email that President Weinstein sent out, although I figure that's often an instinct.

1. Which of the following best describes your overall attitude towards the way toplevel administrators in Nassau Hall and West College have been running Princeton?
2. Have the major decisions top-level administrators in Nassau Hall and West
College made in recent years led to an improvement or decline in the overall quality of student life at Princeton?
3. Do you feel top-level administrators in Nassau Hall and West College listen to
student input while creating substantial campus policies?

I know correlation doesn't prove causation, but notice how the older students get, the less they approve of the administration?

Is it wisdom, experience, or pessimism?


Slipping Through the Back Door: Anal Play for the Squeamish

If you had asked me a year ago what my feelings were about anal play during sex, I would’ve simply replied “my asshole is exit only.” Like many people, I felt that anal play was dirty, unsanitary and a porn convention. Though I am certainly no anal fiend, my thoughts on the subject have changed slightly since.

I think it all began with a miscommunication with my friends this year about the proper way to clean one’s ass in the shower. I was under the impression that they were shoving soapy fingers up their assholes and that I was some sort of hygienic delinquent, but it turned out that “up your ass” to them meant “in your ass crack”. I felt relieved. They proceeded to add that a stripper had once told them that girls love it when a guy sticks a finger up their asses during oral. And strippers should know these things, right? During my next shower, I wanted to just try it out, but for some reason I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.

“My ex-girlfriend really liked it,” Rob revealed to me some time later, “just a little pinky every now and then, you know.” Soon after, I caved into my own curiosity. “Fine. JUST THE PINKY,” I told him. I’m pretty sure it was all I could think about through all of the lead up to his bold venture to where no man had been before. He lubed up a finger and went for it. I felt…strange. I was searching for the pleasure in all of it, but just couldn’t find it. I made all sorts of squirmy faces during that minute or so of exploration, until I felt I’d given it an adequate chance and told him that it was enough. He scrambled to the bathroom to wash his hand, and I laid back, attempting to figure out whether I’d let him do it again. I did, a few times, and sometimes it felt more pleasurable than others, but on the whole, it’s just not my cup of tea. But, if I'd never given it a chance, I never would've learned that stimulation around the anal opening (instead of inside of it) can be exciting and pleasurable for me.

Giving and receiving, however, were two different things for me, and when I, searching for something new to do, asked myself if I (or rather, my finger) was prepared to take the plunge for him, the decision wasn’t easy. But, I manned up and did it, and much to my surprise, he loved it. It took me a few tries to figure out what felt good and what didn’t for him, but it added A LOT to fellatio, and a couple of times, to sex.

Most of the guys I’ve spoken to about the subject say the same things about why they won’t try it: “There’s poop up there!” or “It would make me feel gay” or “I’m sure it would feel good, but I just can’t bring myself to do it.” First of all, poop isn’t just sitting in your anus all day just waiting for a finger to cling to. I’ve never seen Rob’s poop, nor he mine, and I intend to keep it that way. Second, anal play isn’t gay unless there’s another man attached to the finger/tongue/object in question. Third, men have a prostate, which brings a lot of extra pleasure to many men when stimulated, so it’s worth a try. Remember: when you’re alone in the shower, or your room with the door closed/locked/whatever, you’re the only one who ever has to know what you’re doing. It’s your body; do what you want with it!

If you’re feeling curious, don’t be afraid to explore. Here are my recommendations:

- Relax. This means being comfortable with what’s coming, what it my or may not feel like, and what that means to you. If you’re exploring with a partner, make sure you’re comfortable with them, and trust them. If you’re all tense, it may be painful.

- If you’re inserting anything up there, USE LUBE. The anus does not produce its own lubrication, so a silicone- or water-based lube should be used for maximum comfort.

- Don’t just skip to it. Get in a sexy mood, get turned on, and then try it out. It’s hard to find something new and taboo sexy without any context.

- If your hands are making contact with the anus, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly afterward. This seems pretty obvious, but still. Never use a finger that has just been anally inserted for oral or genital contact without proper handwashing between. Otherwise, urinary tract infections or other unpleasantries can occur.

- If you’re trying anilingus (anal-oral sex), be careful. While rimming can be pleasurable for both men and women, sanitation is key. Make sure the area has been thoroughly cleansed and is free of fecal matter before putting your face or anyone else’s face near it. If you are not using a dental dam (which is recommended), make sure that you and your partner have been tested for STDs, as some infections can be transmitted in this way.

If you’re a guy and you’ve moved past curiosity and are looking for something a little more exciting, try the Aneros® Prostate-Perineum massager. This thing is so amazing that my boyfriend and I actually got in a fight about it (oh jealousy, what a bitch!) In a half hour, he was able to achieve “5-10 non-ejaculatory orgasms…that came in waves,” without using his hands. Eventually he had to stop because he “just couldn’t take it anymore and was just like… [exhausted panting noise].” If that doesn’t inspire at least a little curiosity in the male population, I don’t know what will. You can find out more about this wonderful product at There are also many more prostate massagers available for men on the web from stores who keep all information confidential, ship in plain boxes and bill under discreet names, so no one has to know that you’re adding to your dirty drawer!


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Please be more constructive with your feedback!

Overheard today in Wilcox: "The only thing worse than the Prince blog is the Street blog."

Ranked higher than another blog already! Good to know that we're moving up in the world. :)

The problem is that they then proceeded to talk about their issues with the Street blog, with not a single mention of how to improve our dear old Prox.

So I'd like to ask (entreat, beseech) the rest of you to offer up your suggestions. Where can we improve? What would you like us to post about? What should we never, ever blog about again?

Any feedback would be extremely helpful. You can't see me through the screen, but I'm smiling my most hopeful, eager smile right now.


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Adversarial relationships

You may think that your preceptor, writing seminar instructor or professor hates you. She may shoot you down frequently in class, or she may have written "LOL" next to your midterm paper's conclusion and given you a D+. But at least she isn't suing you.

Come children, read the story of Priya Venkatesan, a former lecturer in writing at Dartmouth who studies biology using literary theory. (For serious.) She decided to send a courtesy e-mail to former students letting them know she was launching a class action suit against Dartmouth for discrimination and harassment she had suffered at the hands students in a class she taught. The best part? Her "Hello class, I am suing you" e-mail's jaunty valediction ("Have a nice day".)

Source: The Dartmouth Review's Dartlog


Beyond Blackbox

While much of the university's attention has been directed to the recent Blackbox incident, a lesser-known incident with potentially serious implications for campus security has now recently come to the fore.

The Times reported yesterday that
"Princeton University's handling of the alleged kidnapping and assault of a freshman by a gifted scholarship student she was dating came under fire yesterday during the defendant's bail hearing." You can read the rest of the story here.

According to Cass Cliatt, the University's spokeswoman, this is a "complicated case" that has "evolved over time". No doubt, the University may have been right to shield the story from the general public in the short term and to protect the identities of the parties involved, but how can it explain its filing of a police report a month after the incident or its inaction following multiple reports of beating and abuse?

Comments welcome.

Special thanks to my fellow Prox blogger Lillian, who uncovered this story first.


Friday, April 25, 2008

(tri)Weekly WTFs: the truest, tritest, terriblest, or just plain stupidest news items of the week

  • Monday: A nice opinion piece on how meaningless numbers have become to us. As though we weren't already desensitized enough to all those other things, now we have to deal with femtometers too?
  • Tuesday: Witherspoon Sweets to open in Frist? Why they don't think we already have enough sources for empty calories, I can't begin to imagine.
  • Wednesday: OMG THE INTERNET IS DOOMED. I sure hope it doesn't turn out as terrible as Y2K did. Somehow we'll pull through.
  • Thursday: You know, McCosh's Emergency After-Hours is open from 4:45 PM to 8:45 AM. 16 residential colleges/eating clubs, 16 hours of emergency care. Coincidence? I think not.
  • Thursday: Everyone's least favorite gym activity, reincarnated as a huge deal.
  • Friday: I guess I just don't understand how your not speaking for a day is going to help all those who have been silenced. They could use your voice more than your silence, I'd say. Why not speak on their behalf?


On the dangers of holding precept outside

In my experience, professors are very reluctant to hold precept outside. In fact, in the three years that I've been at Princeton, I've only ever had five precepts outside.

Yesterday, I learned why.


Decision 2009

Editor's Note
This year, a race for the presidency of the Class of 2009 is on. Grant Bermann '09 is a three-year incumbent who points to his experience and accomplishments. Alec Williams '09 is the challenger who argues that it's time for a shakeup and some new ideas. Below, both candidates explain why you should vote for them.
The 'Prince' encourages its readers to follow up with the candidates on their ideas in the comments section below. Here's your chance to pose questions and challenge the candidates.
-Michael Juel-Larsen '09

New ideas from an old hand
The Senior Class President election is a choice between the new promises of my opponent and my new ideas, informed by a record of experience, commitment and achievements.
As President for the past three years, I have led our class in an overwhelming array of projects that make the Class of 2009 the leader in class government. In total, we have hosted over 75 events — more than any other class at Princeton.
What I consider more impressive than the sheer quantity of our projects, however, is their ambition and success. We have moved beyond the simple study breaks which typically characterize class government and focused our attention larger initiatives which encourage class unity, help improve everyday student life and plan for life after Princeton
We have rented out movie theaters and restaurants, hosted class concerts, picnics, formals, barbecues, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day and Back to School parties, as well as an epic Battle of the Bands. We have held blood drives and recycling programs, created question and answer sessions on eating clubs and 4-year colleges, and featured customized workshops for ’09 students in search of summer jobs, funding and networking opportunities.
We have organized class trips to mini golf courses and NBA games, made campus DVD rental free for ’09, moved the bicker and sign-in process online for the first time in Princeton history, and just this week negotiated for our class one year of free membership with the Princeton Club of New York, which will provide everyone in the Class of 2009 with a free gym membership in New York City this summer, as well as reciprocal benefits in major cities around the world.
My plans for next year are even more ambitious. I will form a lecture series so that students can hear from both the great professors they missed during their first years at Princeton. I will also work with existing student service groups to promote class unity through shared civic engagement.
I will build on our previous efforts to connect juniors with alumni, begun by our free PCNY membership, by working with Career Services to create mini-courses to help the Class of 2009 network and find jobs and housing after graduation
Senior year is also a time for fun. I will organize a class trip to Atlantic City, N.J. and the Jersey shore to celebrate the submission of our theses. I will host senior stand-up comedy routines, student band concerts, as well as Pub Nights at Triumph, Winberie’s and Ivy Inn, where members of our class can enjoy free beer and wine.
If we are to realize all these goals, we need a Senior Class President who is prepared to hit the ground running. His plans must not be uninformed promises, but new ideas backed up by years of dedication, competence, and achievements.
-Grant Bermann '09

Making the most of our last year
I am running for Class President because I wholeheartedly believe that our Class Government must live up to the expectations of excellence that define every Princeton student. As your Class President, I guarantee that our last year within these legendary gates will be one that we will remember, and for which our class will be remembered for years to come.
The past three years have not been bad – but “not been bad” is not a standard that any Princetonian would consider acceptable. Senior year is fundamentally different than the previous three. Even “good” will not be good enough. Our final year needs to be great.
Class government can and should, play a central role in organizing the awesome events and class-wide undertakings that will stay with us long after we leave here. As Class President, I promise that our class government will do this.
As President of Whig-Clio and Captain of the Ski Team, I have worked with the administration and a variety of student groups. I know how to use this University’s resources to get new, far-reaching ideas off the ground. These are some of the changes I will bring:
First, Investment banks and consulting firms are great at recruiting seniors; but we do not hear enough about careers in other fields. Where are the publishing recruiters, entrepreneurship workshops, and marketing firms? As your Class President, I will bring them here.
Second, I will challenge us to engage the community outside of Princeton. Class Government can be a tremendous resource for service by harnessing the talents and dedication of our classmates to assist those less fortunate than us.
Third, we need to stop repeating the same old study breaks, and start hosting class-wide concert festivals, stand-up comedy nights, and events that you will want to plan your week around. Calling Taco Bell and ordering one thousand quesadillas is not hard. Hosting many events is easy; hosting events that many people attend is not.
There are scores of other things that my Class Government will do: Serve as a voice for our classmates on Prospect Street; Expand dining options for our classmates that choose to dine elsewhere; Lead a discourse with the Administration on setting a single Thesis due date; Initiate out-of-the-box social activities such as group blind-dates.
We can make next year incredible beyond belief. But to do so we will need an ambitious vision. Let this vision be how we remember Princeton, and how Princeton remembers us.
-Alec Williams '09


Thursday, April 24, 2008

Dodgeball Matchups to Look Forward To

Since I'm not the most enthusiastic dodgeball participant (I'm good at dodging, but then it's just you alone on the court, which is not fun for anybody), I like to watch the festivities. Here are some of the initial matches I'm looking forward to seeing:

USG vs. Swimming and Diving

This promises to be absurd. Lots of WWS majors and Josh Weinstein in dodgeball goggles against a really good varsity sports team.

Triangle vs. The Prince

People who spend their time practicing choreography promise to be good at dodging...and then there's the Prince. A group centered around working in an office all day. Prince Sports may save the day, though; this could be surprisingly competitive.

A Capella Consortium vs. OA Leaders

Seriously, with this? OA leader training is a year of preparation for dodgeball...a capella is the opposite, if that's possible.

Men and Women's Varsity Soccer vs. Orange Key Tour Guides

It might be more fair if everyone has to play while running backwards. I expect amazing aim from the soccer teams.

Ed on Campus vs. Football

Anything facing football in the first round will have a tough time of it, but this new publication dealing with journalism seems to have a very different aesthetic from the middle school gym class attire that suits dodgeball so well. I'm interested in their costumes as well as how they withstand the pressure of a team whose job is to throw balls and dodge competitors - even the a bad football team is better than most other teams on a good day.

This is not to say that I'm not predicting some serious upsets, and that I don't think the clubs that got the short end of the stick in these initial match-ups won't whip out some amazing moves - it just promises to be an exciting night.


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Winning Elections.

There are promises that are made during campaign season.
And then there are more effective ways of getting elected.

Free Membership at the
Princeton Club of New York
After a few months of talks, we are pleased to announce that the Class of 2009 will receive one year of
at the Princeton Club of New York
Membership lasts: June '08 - June'09
This means you will have access to these benefits starting this summer and lasting for one full year:
-free gym membership
-discounted hotel rooms
-Broadway theater packages, social mixers, wine tastings, networking opportunities, distinguished lecturers
-private lessons with squash pros, yoga classes, massages
And these are reciprocal benefits at clubs around the world, so you can enjoy the perks even if you're not in NYC.
Official paperwork will be made available to the Class of 2009 via email next week, after final confirmation by the Board of the Princeton Club of New York.

Giving stuff to people during campaign season?
They're still in office-- so why not?
I wish those running for '11 council positions had the same ingenuity.

'09 Candidates could teach American politicians a lesson on running a campaign.


On the Hunt

After my nine month-long senior year high school relationship ended with zero orgasms to my name, I unofficially declared myself an Orgasm Hunter. I was determined to use my newfound freedom and confidence as a woman to find men with exceptional sexual prowess to finally release the sex goddess I’d always imagined was inside of me. Freshman year, I refused to have sex with anyone, but of all the guys I hooked up with only one managed to get me off, and that was with months of practice. I dated that guy, Adam, for all of sophomore year, and when we broke up, I was scared that it could be months or years before I found someone else who would be able to give me what I wanted again. Post break-up, my hookups were pretty frequent and consistent, but with the exception of one chemically enhanced fluke and more recently, my boyfriend Rob*, my only source of orgasms had been my vibrator.

This is not to say that most of the guys that I’ve hooked up with over the last three years are horrible in bed and don’t know what they’re doing. To be corny, an orgasm is not something that someone else gives to you — you have to, to a certain extent, take it for yourself. I firmly believe that I, like most women, will never have an orgasm purely through penetration; however, when it comes to cunnilingus, I now know that I’m not incapable. Just as a guy needs to have some basic technique or skills down in order to be “good” at giving head (or fingering, or having sex, or anything), none of it means anything if I’m not into it. During some of my first experiences with oral sex, I just closed my eyes tightly and hoped that it would work. I put so much pressure on myself; I would literally try to convince myself “this feels good, you should like this, ENJOY THIS, DAMNIT.” I soon discovered the power of fantasizing during oral sex, and it enhanced my experience considerably. (My favorite fantasy is an office scene; My employer can’t get any work done because he’s distracted by my inappropriate work dress, so he teaches me a lesson…) I’ve learned a lot about the things I like, the things I don’t like and how to explain what I want, but that doesn’t guarantee me an orgasm. After my breakup with Adam, I finally knew that I wasn’t a mutant, I knew it was possible, but it just wasn’t happening. The one time I came with Ethan* — a “revisit” from freshman year and jackass supreme — I was high and could literally feel my inhibitions melting away. I’d been thinking of sexual encounters like a science project with a natural progression: First came the kissing, then came the touching, then the shirt, then the bra and if he was lucky, off came the underwear. That night, I felt an urgency I’d never felt before, I found myself desperate to get naked and jump straight into things, but my sober brain said “no, it’s not time yet.” My altered state assured me that if I wanted to do something, I should do it, because it’s about pleasure. For the first time, instead of doing things they way I thought they should be done, I did things the way I felt they should be done, and it led to a fantastic orgasm. I hooked up with Ethan again days afterward, and once again, we were in the no cum zone. It wasn’t him and his technique, it was me and my ability (or inability) to let go with him.

What I’d learned about Rob through our quickly and intensely developed friendship very much encouraged my desire to become physical with him. Upon explaining to him that I’d met a guy who refuses to eat girls out, he simply replied, “that’s dumb.” When I explained to him how hard I was to please in bed, he assured me that his ex had been the same way and that it was just a matter of practice. When I asked him one cold December night what he was like in bed, he told me about how he likes to take his time, tease and be teased, and make sure that he makes his partner feel amazing. I literally pounced on him 30 minutes later, certain that I’d found the guy who was going to give me my next orgasm. That first night, we hooked up for eight (!) hours. It was almost 5 a.m. by the time his tongue found its way to my clit, and I could tell that he was exhausted. I just couldn’t enjoy myself knowing that, so I told him, “it’s okay, maybe some other time.” I didn’t have an orgasm that night but for the first time, I didn’t mind or care. It had still been the most sexual, sensual, pleasurable encounter I’d ever had up to that point. Months later I can still remember the way his hands felt on my waist, the electricity that coursed through my body as he teased me, and the sensation of his lips on my neck. Never had I felt so focused on what I was feeling, or so open to being pleasured for the sake of pleasure instead of reaching some distant goal. We hooked up again the next day, and I came in even less time than usual.

Sure, I was just looking for another orgasm when we started, but I ended up with much more. Besides the fact that we’ve been dating for months now, the experience made me realize that my problems were not physical, but emotional. I was having trouble having orgasms with men before simply because I didn’t feel safe or comfortable with them. I didn’t recognize it at the time, but now I firmly believe that that’s the real reason. Even after I’d learned to lay back and fantasize, I was still anxious about the men between my legs. Not only did I worry about whether I looked okay naked or if I tasted weird; I worried about whether they would become annoyed that I was taking so long to cum, that they saw oral sex as a chore, or that they may not be the nice guys I thought they were. I even worried about owing them something afterward, even if it wasn’t that great for me. With the men I felt little connection with, I couldn’t just sit back and enjoy. To be honest, I had always been only minimally physically attracted and severely emotionally disconnected from them. My lust never overcame my wandering thoughts.

I know this isn’t typical, and trust me, I’d love to be able to just have orgasms all over the place with anyone willing to offer them to me, but from my limited research it appears that I can only have orgasms with the guys with whom I end up in long term relationships. Perhaps my vagina has set up an intelligent internal selection process for me. Or maybe I just can’t let good cunnilingus go. In any case, it hasn’t steered me wrong yet. It’s taken me years to realize that despite my desire to be wild and play the field, random hookups just don’t work for me; perhaps with time and experience, that could change. I envy those girls who can cum at the drop of the hat with whomever whenever, but apparently (unfortunately?) that’s just not me.


Missing out on the McCarter

I really enjoy David Sedaris' books, and I remember one day freshman year someone casually mentioned at dinner that he'd be speaking at the McCarter in just an hour or two. The event hadn't been well-publicized, despite Sedaris' renown, and I couldn't stand the idea of missing him. Hurrying down University, I got to the McCarter with a friend, only to find out that because people living in Princeton had known about the event and were flocking there en masse, there were no tickets left.

Given the option of waiting, we did, and they found some tickets just before Sedaris came on stage. We bought them with those random-colored Tiger Tickets no one really uses, and managed not only to hear Sedaris read, but to meet him afterwards and get our books signed. It was an incredible opportunity - and one that I almost missed.

Rufus Wainwright was here this week, and that, too, nearly slipped by. I had a commitment and missed it, but perhaps I could have planned ahead and managed to go if I'd known more than a day or two in advance - he's a well-known musician whose music is popular, and I was surprised there wasn't more buzz about his concert on campus.

The McCarter calendar boasts some of the campus' most interesting events, and everyone I know has scads of Tiger Tickets to see anything they'd want to watch there for free - but no one does. The events I've attended there have been heavily attended by adults who live in town, but few undergraduates are aware of them; they might show up on Point, or they might not, and they fly largely under the radar of most undergraduates.

I don't know how undergraduates can be made more aware of the McCarter's calendar, but on a campus that seems to have gone so program-heavy that I hardly want to attend any events, much less the 17 different ones I get daily emails about, some of these are really noteworthy. I'm going to make a note of keeping my eyes open about them - you might want to do the same!


Monday, April 21, 2008

Arzu Komili: What is a painting?

What is a painting? That is the question. The question first asked by Abstract Expressionists such as Rothko, de Kooning, and Pollock in mid-twentieth century America. And the question asked today, in the new millennium, by Arzu Komili, a senior in the Visual Arts Program at Princeton University. Arzu’s collection of paintings is unveiled today at 185 Nassau Street, exhibited throughout the week in the building’s entryway and inner room. They’re three-dimensional and explosive; they challenge the inherent qualities of painting such as form (flatness) and content (theme). 

Arzu explains: For my thesis show, I am undertaking a project that is much grander than my past aspirations, as I wish, not only to comment on the history of painting, but also of its presentation.

The talent illustrated by Arzu in her artwork mimics innovative artists of the past with similar ambitions.

Using both rooms in Lucas gallery, I plan to play them off against each other with the presentation of their contents. A duality will be established between "where" the paintings are located in both rooms.

Check it out. Lewis Center for the Arts, 185 Nassau Street, April 22nd – 26th. 10 am – 4:30 pm.

Second photo taken by Ed Greenblat, courtesy of Lewis Center for the Arts' website: from


A bank-breaking 'dream' apartment

Each time I set foot into my dingy, dusty single in Patton Hall, I take solace in the idea that come October, I will be living in a fabulous Boston flat. It’s not that I haven’t enjoyed Princeton’s dorm room system. I arrived in the fall of 2004 to a suite of seven other giggling girls. I am happy to say that I am still friends with all of them, in part because we have been cooped up on campus over the past four years. A large part of the cohesion of Princeton’s social scene comes from the fact that most of its students live on campus – unless they are forced off by alcohol violations. It is easy to study or hang out in a friend’s room late at night because we don’t have to worry about walking home on the streets of Philadelphia, like the students at Penn.

By senior year, I have come to realize that enough is enough. I want to live like a normal human being, have a kitchen, and maybe a little window box where I can grow basil and a medley of herbs that I will soon learn to cook with. I want to have a nice, queen size bed and invest in furniture that I can keep for years to come.

One key fact that I often forget is the expensive and tiresome process of finding a dream apartment. A New York Times story on Sunday laid out a ‘how-to’ guide of finding an apartment in the ‘City’. A shocking part of the article was an outline of average costs: a one-bedroom apartment in Village is about $3,100 a month, while the average studio is about $2,200. Having a doorman jacks up the price of a one-bedroom up to $3,500.

Even more preposterous, it that landlords expect tenants to earn at least 40 times the monthly rent. That means that to snag a $3,100 one-bedroom bachelor pad, a graduating senior would need to make $124,000 in annual salary. Landlords allow recent graduates to co-sign with a ‘guarantor’, ie: mom and pops. But that guarantor must present proof of a good credit rating, including bank stubs, tax returns and other private records that a parent might not want to fax over.

The article really hit home the idea that Princeton students are living in a vicious circle. No matter how much we try to break free of the well-trod paths to consulting and investment banking, we live in a world of financial constraints that necessitate a great salary if we aim to be independent professionals. Or, at least, independent professionals living in New York or Boston. Maybe it’s time to expand our horizons.

For the full New York Times article, see


Sunday, April 20, 2008

No Dodgeball for Ivy?

I heard this year's Dodgeball tournament's residential college/eating club bracket is featuring exactly 15 teams. Mmm alright, 10 eating clubs + 5 res colleges... oh wait, Whitman's here! Who's missing? Did one of the clubs implode?

Apparently, Ivy Club won't be participating in this year's Dodgeball tournament. According to one of the organizers, the reason why Ivy won't attend is because they have an important members event that night. C'mon, it's dodgeball! Last year, 3,000 Princetonians took part in the event - it was so large The Street was essentially closed down that Thursday night. If you ask me, perhaps Ivy is still a little bitter from last year's tournament: in a 5 man on 5 man tiebreaker match with Tiger Inn, Ivy lost and the chants of " I - f*ckin-vy!" were drowned out by " T - f*ckin' I! "

It would have been sorta nice to have a perfect 16 seed bracket, yea?


Forbes = Japan?

I draw the following evidence to support the above equation:

1) The Forbes Alumni Dinner (complete with sushi).

2) The Japanese tea ceremony last Thursday at Forbes.

3) Though both tiny, out-of-the-way archipelagos, Forbes and Japan are each disproportionately awesome and technologically advanced in comparison with their peers (Forbes addition has AC monopoly this summer).

4) And let's not forget their stunning physical resemblance:


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Spending Big, but is it Enough?

An illuminating Times article explains Princeton's spending habits more clearly than most faculty or students could. With $2.2 million per student, Princeton's "per capita" endowment exceeds all others. This makes it an easy target for comments like this: "On a white-shoe campus with aristocratic traditions and one of the highest rates of alumni giving, luxuries abound. "

Indeed, the University spends a sizeable percent of its $15.8 billion endowment each year - 4.6% for 2008. But does Princeton spend in the right places? The article calls into question the financial strain placed on middle-income families when Princeton could easily pay for each person to go to the University for free.

The article also reports the Priority Committee 's (PRICOM) stated goals this year to give more money to clubs and intramurals, while deciding not to expand the budget for sexual harrassment advising.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Proxless in Princeton

As I took out my wallet to prox into the Rocky dining hall, I found, much to my dismay that the wonderfully tacky plastic id was missing from its usual spot. I looked through my wallet. It hadn't moved to any of the other slots. I checked my pockets. Nada. Then I remembered: I had taken it out the night before when I went to dinner. So... No prox.

I tried to explain my dilemma to the card checker, who told me I'd have to fill out a card voucher and, as far as I could understand the whole thing would cost me about $2.50. Being the irrational human being that I am, I decided I didn't want to pay $2.50 f0r a meal I had already bought. But I also didn't want to go back to my dorm. Logical thing to do? I went to Chancellor Green to buy a panini. Too late did I learn that unlike the paninis from Cafe Viv, these didn't come with chips. :'(

The day continued as usual until I got back to my dorm and realized I couldn't prox myself in. Before this would have been a tragedy. But now, we have Whitman, and it is more or less all connected. Instead of asking someone to prox me in, I simply walked into the Whitman library, thinking the back exit would take me somewhere where I could get to my room. Instead it took me to a dark and scary place, which as far as I could make out was the underground extension of the dining hall. Simple enough, I got back out, entered the dining hall, and walked through all of Whitman to my room, where I of course remembered that I had simply left my prox in my book as a book marker. You'll never guess who felt silly...


Art for Provocation's Sake

All I can say about this without feeling ill is that I'm glad it isn't a part of 185's calendar. The most remarkable achievement of this work is that it has united nearly everyone - pro-lifers, pro-choicers, those with fundamental respect for their bodies - in a resounding groan of disgust. [Check out IvyGate and Jezebel for commentary - the last paragraph of the Jezebel post sums it up nicely.] Anyone want to speak in the artist's defense?

Update: Either way, still so wrong.


free vs fashion

I'll be the first to admit that I love free stuff, but it just makes me uncomfortable every time I walk into a class and, in eerie horror movie-like unison, three people swivel around in their seats to show that they're wearing the very same bright blue CA t-shirt presently hiding under my jacket. I'll sit through the whole precept zipped up to the chin because it's just so awkward - and a little creepy, in a Brave New World kind of way.

It doesn't help that everyone on campus goes to the same events, so we all have the same free t-shirts and sweatshirts and so on.

Oddly enough, pens don't bother me so much. "Oh, I have that pen too! are you ELE?" "No, I just went to the SEAS open house." "Hey me too!" And then we become facebook friends.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Princeton Preview Part 2: What's so bad about Pre-Frosh?

Why is it that whenever I ask anyone if they are hosting,
they say something like, "No! I never host pre-frosh!"


After the four-year deluge: Is it too much?

It hit me last week at the Nassau Street Starbucks, as I relaxed into one of those cushy armchairs toward the back of the store, a novel in my lap and a grande coffee on the table in front of me, watching the cycle of people who filled and vacated the seats beside me, listening to the din of ice being crushed for frappucinos, my mind flitting back and forth between Charles Dickens' London and post-thesis Princeton: This is what I thought all of college would be like. With less than two months to go in my time as an undergrad, I was, for the first time in four years, living the collegiate fantasy I had envisioned as an idealistic high schooler -- idling the day away at a coffee shop somewhere, taking my time to read and ponder, to people-watch, to think.

It was a strange realization, a little bit ironic, a little bit funny, a little bit sad. I should have known, of course, that college wouldn't be all coffee-shop daydreams and relaxed novel-reading. And, naturally, some of the hectic nature of the last four years stemmed from voluntary choices I made (and have no regrets about -- I love ya, Daily Princetonian). Still, I think it says something that it's only now, with two classes and no thesis and only a few weeks separating me from the real world, that my naive high school vision of college life has become a reality. If education were like that coffee I was drinking during my mini-epiphany last week, Princeton, for most of your four years here, wouldn't be about taking a few relaxed sips every minute or two. It would be about chugging hot, steaming ventis by the gallon, one after another. This isn't an idle intellectual life, perusing pages and pausing to reflect; this is a life of skimming, of underlining hundreds of pages and thousands of words at 3 a.m., getting the gist for precept the next day, intercepting ideas by the truckload and hoping some of them stick and make sense.

Maybe most colleges are like this. Maybe. But I think it might be a different kind of learning, the kind you get here, and for all its benefits and rigor, I wonder if it can detract from a real sense of critical thinking and careful parsing -- from really taking the time to think and consider. I'm taking a history class this semester with a visiting professor from UConn Law, who commented on the difference in the amount of reading he assigns to his UConn students and what he is expected to assign here at Princeton. He told me that one of his colleagues in the Law and Public Affairs program (LAPA), also a law school professor, initially drew up for his Princeton class a syllabus that included the same amount of reading he would assign to one of his law classes. The department told him it wasn't enough. In law school, my professor said, difficulty is associated with the complexity of the text and the time it will take to really get your mind around it; twenty pages can, in that context, be a huge assignment. "Here, it's different," he said. "Here, difficulty means volume."

I don't mean to sound disappointed or bitter. I have few regrets about the education I've gotten here, both inside and outside the classroom. And, for all its stress and sleeplessness, I enjoyed researching and writing my thesis and am proud to have finished it (even if it still hasn't quite sunk in that it's over). But another part of me is ready to slow down, is happy to escape the intellectual overload. It's not that I'd like to escape learning entirely -- I hope I never want that -- but I am glad to staunch the flood of pages and ideas, to sip rather than chug, to let my mind wander and wonder and not feel guilty. That's been the lesson of the last week -- and it's one I mean to continue mulling, now that I have the time.

Arielle Gorin '08 is a 'Prince' managing editor emerita.


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Famous Princetonians - Volume One

As America heads to the polls this November, two issues will be on the minds of most voters: the war in Iraq and our ailing economy. Interestingly enough, both crises are managed by competent and humble leaders - who have either educated students or been educated in the halls of Old Nassau. This week, we spotlight these two famous Princetonians - General David H. Petraeus and Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke - in a less-than-conventional portrait that goes beyond the CDOs and the IEDs.

David H. Petraeus (b. 1952)
- Commanding General, Multi-National Forces - Iraq
- Received his MPA (1985) and Ph.D (1987) in International Relations from the Wilson School
- Middle name is 'Howell'; Childhood nickname was 'Peaches', due to his often-mispronounced last name and his lack of facial hair
- According to his West Point yearbook entry, was "always going for it in sports, academics, leadership, and even his social life" (i.e. a natural shoe-in for Princeton)
- Was accidentally shot in the chest during a live-fire exercise in 1991, and subsequently taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where he was operated on by future U.S. Senator (and Woody Woo colleague) Bill Frist
- Was profiled by Tom Clancy in the novel 'Airborne'
- As major general of the 101st Airborne Division, was called the 'Mayor of Mosul' by the locals and 'King David' by his troops
- Testifying in Congress was easy, compared with his thesis defense at Princeton
- Ph.D dissertation was on "The American Military and the Lessons of Vietnam: A Study of Military Influence and the Use of Force in the Post-Vietnam Era"; hopefully, history will not repeat itself under his watch

Ben S. Bernanke (b. 1953)
- 14th Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve
- Former Chairman of Princeton's Department of Economics, 1996-2002 (his homepage is still active)
- Middle name is 'Shalom'; First name is 'Ben', not 'Benjamin'
- Co-authored the textbook you are now using in ECO 101
- Father was a part-time theater manager; grandfather was a professional Torah reader
- Was an All-State saxophonist in high school
- Worked as a waiter at South of the Border in his hometown of Dillon, SC during summers to pay for college
- Ph.D dissertation at MIT was on "Long-term commitments, dynamic optimization, and the business cycle"; his thesis adviser was current Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer
- As a professor at Princeton, managed to keep grade inflation low and stable
- Wrote extensively on the political and economic causes of the Great Depression; hopefully, history will not repeat itself under his watch


Pre-Frosh discuss college choices -- Daily Princetonian Video

The debut of Daily Princetonian Video, which caught up with pre-frosh during April Hosting (called Princeton Preview weekend this year). The weather certainly cooperated for a beautiful Saturday and Sunday. Most of the pre-frosh seemed very impressed with the effort that the University put out to welcome them to campus, and events like student group performances were well attended. Nevertheless, as the video shows, some of the admitted students had to make hard choices...


No Sex for a Week!

Alas, my independent work is calling my name, and due by the end of the week, so no Sex and the Street this week. It will be returning next Wednesday. In the meantime, I'm curious as to what kinds of topics YOU would like to see me explore here, so feel free to leave a comment with your suggestions/questions. Don't be shy; in my eyes, there's pretty much nothing that's too taboo to talk about.

xo, Ms. SatS


Monday, April 14, 2008

"Leatherheads" highlights today's lacking school spirit

The movie opens in Princeton’s old Palmer Stadium, where 40,000 fans are cheering on the Tigers and singing a 1920s fight song. Then the camera zooms in to a muddy field in the countryside where professional football was supposedly born. George Clooney, who plays a too-old Dodge Connelly, is trying to promote a sport that is without money or fans. That is, until they recruit a young Princeton superstar to play for the Duluth Bulldogs.

I walked out of the movie with one thought – what happened to the glory days? Princeton’s team defined modern-day football and aroused feelings of grandeur and courage among students, alums and football fans around the nation. Princeton took part in the birth of college football in 1869, though Rutgers took the game at its home stadium that day. The defeat was soon followed by an 80-year stretch of football dominance that earned the Tigers 28 national championship titles.

Princeton Football was closest to resurrecting its past in the fall of 2006 during the Yale game. The bonfire and Ivy League title were on the line, and 18,000 fans came out to watch the show. Once again, Princeton students were excited to be in the stadium cheering for their boys.

Let’s fast-forward to May of this year. Men’s hockey made recent history by trouncing the Crimson to win the ECAC championship. The hockey rink was full of fans, but they were mostly locals with young children. The band was the largest, and rowdiest, group of student fans. God bless these tuba and trumpet players who continue to lift my spirits each time I drag myself out to a game.

Princeton continues to have top-notch sports, from lacrosse to squash to crew. But few teams, and even fewer women’s teams, draw a broad student fan base. “Leatherheads” is a reminder that this isn’t how it always used to be. I’m left wondering why. Are athletics less important to the twenty-first century Princeton student? Or is school spirit expressed in other ways than supporting our peers in an Ivy League line-up?


Transforming 185 Nassau into a Greenhouse: The Art of Jessie W. Thompson

The past few days have been extraordinarily busy for Jessie W. Thompson, a Molecular Biology major at Princeton. Saturday and Sunday were spent at 185 Nassau Street, hanging the collection of paintings that comprise her senior thesis in Visual Arts. Today, Jessie adjusted lighting and received the final word from her advisor. Saturday, Sunday and today were spent in anticipation of tomorrow, when her exhibition opens and the department critiques her work. Although it’s been difficult for Jessie, juggling her environmental microbiology thesis with her show at 185 Nassau, she looks forward to unveiling her artwork to the public.


The artwork in Jessie’s show combines representational drawing with abstract photography with particular focus on black and the silhouette in paint. Each piece touches upon the interplay of emotional extremes: joy and morbidity, love and loneliness, pain and ecstasy. Jessie explains, “I’d like folks to see this as a playful and joyous exposition of personal matters.”


A major theme of her installation evolves around the concept of a greenhouse, what Jessie finds to be “the most peaceful, pleasurable and thrilling of places.” In a greenhouse, humans and plants coexist; unlike the “cement-ridden habitats” of today’s urbanized world, a greenhouse sanctifies the nearly extinct tropics.


A statement from the artist: This collection of paintings and drawings has been gathered from places, moments, lights, leaves and imaginings I've come across in travels between classes and between continents. They reflect on the complex modern relationship between humans and the natural world, the emotion of quiet moments, the wondrous liquid colors of paint and ink, and the intricacies of nature.


Specifically, I would like to show you how a pen companionably scratches in memory, a few moments alone with a night full of lanterns, and a scent peculiar to the air of a greenhouse.


Jessie’s show will be held at 185 Nassau Street until April 19th (10:00 am to 4:30 pm).


The internet is for porn!

I swear I'll stop posting about the incongruous images that go with BBC articles... after this one!

The rest of the article is about how vulnerable your log-in data is. To the photo-matcher's credit, porn is mentioned once in the article: "It overturns the whole notion that if you stay away from gambling and porn sites you are okay," he said.

I especially love the caption: visiting some parts of the web can be risky business indeed! Seriously though, I can just imagine how they came up with this picture:
"Hurry, I need a photo of hackers stealing your log-in data."

"And what does that look like, exactly? A guy sitting at a computer?"

"Point. Then... just get me a picture of the dangers of the internet!"

"Okay, I can do that. You type 'porn' into Google, and I'll snap a picture."

"Isn't that a little nsfw?"

"Before you hit search, then. Ready?"

"Any way you can you shop out my face?"


Sunday, April 13, 2008

Runway to Street

It's not so difficult to resist wearing white before Memorial Day, when yellow and black are such simple and chic substitutes. This look from Elie Saab is easy to recreate, and is the perfect way to embrace summer, without overcommitting to it. 

1) Carnaby Carryall, J. Crew: $250
2)Beaded Metallic Floral Top, Forever 21: $24.80
3)Blythe Black Shorts,$39.95
4)Guess Pumps, $221.00

This look from Etro is for the girl, whom I like to call Urban Bohemian; artistic and romantic, but also driven and practical. There are certainly many of these types on Princeton's campus, and though this look is a little expensive to emulate, the bold statement it makes is well worth the price. 
1) Olive Lace Trim Corduroy Jacket, $47.35, on sale
2) Diesel Balboa Bag, Urban Outfitters:$175
3) Gold Triple Hoop Drop Earrings, $198
4) Eyelet Mini Skirt, Wetseal: $19.50
5) Flower and Animal Print Chiffon Silk Long Scarf,$55
6) Tan Paisley Shoe, $79

Though I thought Princeton had exhausted my tolerance for orange, Hermes has managed to spice it up again, using purple as an accent color. I love this Spring look; not only is it comfortable, but it is also extremely versatile-perfect for either a picnic or a night out. 

1) Crescent Doctor Bag, Urban Outfitters:$39.99
2)Bright Colored Hot Short, Wet Seal: $16.50
3)BCBG Women's Sandy High Heel Peep Toe,$99.99
4)Orange Polo, Hollister:$29.50
5) Faux Suede Braided Belt, $10
6) Shirred Tunic Tee, Newport News:$29.00


Who is John Prendergast?

Quick: What do the following four individuals have in common?

Kofi Annan
Colin Powell
Bill Gates
John Prendergast

Judging from the first three names, you might venture to answer that they are all recipients of Princeton's Crystal Tiger Award. In that case, you would be correct. You might also ask the question: Who is John Prendergast?

John Prendergast may not be a household name, but anyone who's seen Hotel Rwanda or worn a 'Save Darfur' shirt will only come to understand the extraordinary impact of this one man. In his lifetime, Mr. Prendergast has served as a human rights activist, White House adviser, State Department diplomat, NGO founder, Hollywood liaison, and Lord Byron-esque warrior poet. Instead, the question should be: Why haven't we heard of John Prendergast?

I almost made the mistake of writing off Mr. Prendergast as the 'Bradley Whitford' of Crystal Tiger recipients -- that is, until I learned of the incredible work accomplished by this incredible person. Go see it for yourself. Indeed, if the Crystal Tiger is all about "recogniz[ing] those who have demonstrated a strong commitment to enriching the human experience and who have inspired students at Princeton to pursue the same goal", then the selection committee is dead-on this year, and Mr. Prendergast is a worthy recipient, worthy of our attention.

Who knows? John Prendergast may go down in history as the 'Maroon 5' of Crystal Tiger recipients: obscure at Princeton, but a rockstar later on.

The Crystal Tiger Award Presentation is taking place in McCosh 50 on Monday, April 21st. Tickets to the presentation are free and available to the public at Frist between 12-6pm from April 14-16.


Saturday, April 12, 2008

First Day of Spring


The Late Meal - 04.12.08

Your favorite meal of the day... served hot, and a week late.

Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa - Earlier this week, the current Editor-in-Chief of the Prince apologized to University Dining Services workers "who felt personally slighted or misrepresented" by last Thursday's article and for "issues of balance and accuracy" on the part of the Prince editors. However, still no word yet on whether the Managing Board from two years ago will apologize to Asians across America for similar reasons.

The Tory debates Chastity Center
- Once again, our friends over at The Tory show that they are out of touch with reality. Everyone knows that we already have a chastity center here on campus. It's called the E-Quad.

College Council Budgets Unequal - When pressed by angry college councilors on why their budgets were unequal, Dean of the College Nancy W. Malkiel quelled the impending controversy and, in an Obama-style rhetorical flourish, laid out her broader vision for the campus:

"Unequal budgets are just a part of the University's larger plan to have the residential colleges supplant the eating clubs. In order to do that, the residential colleges must first compete with the eating clubs, and to do that, they must mirror the eating clubs themselves. First, our focus groups had determined that Princeton students really like exclusivity, so we instituted the College Nights as a way to rival the Street's Pub Nights, while increasing the number of members-only events across all colleges. Now, we realize exclusivity isn't good enough, and must redirect more our efforts towards creating a more inequitable and class-based environment - much like Prospect Ave. Hence, Whitman is our shadow Ivy, Forbes is our parallel Charter, and Wilson is our soon-to-be Campus..."
Then, channeling her inner Orwell, Malkiel declared:
"All colleges are equal, but some colleges are more equal than others."

Thanks, Big Sister.

Do you Read the Prince Over Breakfast? - If so, this is a great article to kill your appetite.

Campus Club Asbestos Deemed Not Dangerous - I had no idea that there was a such thing as 'good' asbestos (perhaps it's like a benign tumor or high-density lipoproteins?). If so, I couldn't think of a sillier way to inform and reassure the public of this fact than through a student newspaper. "That asbestos? In Campus? Nawww, it's not dangerous. The freshmen journalists* over at the Prince told me so."

Creative Thesis Slots Highly Prized by '09s - A university having a quota on creativity? Welcome to Princeton.

Keller '63 Donates $25 Million - The money will go towards "encouraging the integration of engineering and the liberal arts." Thank goodness. Now, the E-Quad may not be known as the Chastity Center after all!!

*For the record, I used to be a freshman journalist.