Spotted: M. Night Shyamalan

Director M. Night Shyamalan of The Sixth Sense fame and The Last Airbender infamy, was on campus today to tour the University with his wife and high-school-aged daughter, who was carrying a packet of applicant information.

Members of Umqombothi, the African a cappella group, invited the family to their upcoming show when they stopped by the group’s booth in Frist. Shyamalan declined, but he chatted with the group for a bit. When Umqombothi members asked him if he directed films, he simply put a finger to his lips and walked away.

Here are some very shady pictures of the director and his family:

[gallery link="file" orderby="title"]

April Fools’ Day Roundup

Ah, April Fools’ Day. It’s one of two days in the year when all of your friends are suddenly pregnant. You can’t trust anyone or anything, and April 1st is tough for the unsuspecting. Check out some of the highlights of April Fools’ Day on campus.

ORFE Paradise

The Operational Research and Financial Engineering (ORFE) department converted a Sherrerd Hall elevator into a mini tropical paradise. The elevator was complete with beach chairs, flip-flops, and potted plants. The illusion was bolstered by sweet smelling perfumes and a wall-sized print of a beach.

[caption id="attachment_14349" align="aligncenter" width="240"] Sad ORFE majors know it’s the closest they can get to happiness until they go to Goldman.[/caption]

Eating Club Hijinks

Tower officers announced that the club had moved behind Campus Club, and that the club is holding an all-day meeting that is mandatory for all members. Officers also announced a number of fictional parties and lamented that Franzia had discontinued its varieties of white and rosé wine.

Colonial officers stared social relevance in the face and announced that the club would no longer allow freshmen to enter the club to “boost our status on the social ladder.” Another email announcement showed the club buckling to legal pressures and unveiling a plan to turn away students from the club if they are unable to produce a valid driver’s license, passport, or birth certificate.

In an email sent to Terrace members, president Neal Donnelly ’14 said that, in light of an inordinately large sign-in class, the club would be retroactively bickering its sophomores. Among other criteria, sophomores would be evaluated on how hard they could chill and their arts portfolio.

A USG Resignation

USG President Shawon Jackson ’15 sent an email to the undergraduate student body, announcing that he was taking a job at the White House and stepping down from USG. USG Vice-President Carmina Mancenon ’14 would take his place, and a new Vice-President would be elected during Spring Elections. Later in the email, Jackson revealed that it was all a ruse.

The Ultimate Housing Prank

On Monday morning, a rather convincing email purporting to be from the Office of Housing and Real Estate Services was sent to the student body and stated that draw times would be reassigned due to incorrect point values. An email sent by Associate Director of Student Housing Lisa DePaul confirmed that the announcement was a prank, and that OIT is investigating the email.

Though the email was sent from, instead of the Housing office’s real email address (, The Daily Princetonian reported that many students believed the announcement because of technical difficulties during last year’s room draw process.

Yesterday evening, Will Harrel ’13 posted a Facebook status taking credit for the email. This too was an April Fools’ Day prank, and Harrel later revealed that he was unconnected with the housing announcement. In the meantime, the real perpetrators have also taken to impersonating Harrel, and their identities remain unannounced.

One Last Look at Old Frick

20 Washington Road

It’s been two years since it was closed, but 20 Washington Road is still littered with remnants of what made it the former Frick Laboratory.

When the Department of Chemistry moved from 20 Washington to the new Frick Lab, the old building was closed. According to the Campus Plan, the University plans to renovate the building to host the Department of Economics and various international offices, but the proposed renovations haven’t been approved by the zoning board yet. At best, 20 Washington Road could reopen in the fall of 2016.

Incomplete chemical equations are still scrawled on chalkboards.Names remain mounted on office doors. An improvised paper sign reads “There is NO COMPUTER CLUSTER HERE,” directing students to the then-new Lewis Library.

In the middle of a changing campus, 20 Washington Road stands still. It’s a huge, historic building, but entire classes of students will never set foot in it. Take a look inside this building in stasis:

For more pictures of ‘Old Frick,’ check out this slideshow of the building during its last days.

Harlem Shake: Late Meal Gone Wild

If you didn’t happen to be walking through Frist this afternoon, we didn’t want you to miss out on the fact that, well, this happened (without the necessary music, but we figure you’ll be sick of hearing it):

Princeton has lost no time in jumping on the bandwagon with this latest internet craze.  Since it was brought to campus last week by the fine men of Brown Hall (see social media round-up), Cloister Inn has also come out with an original edition.

While you’re on Youtube, the underwater and puppy versions are worth searching for…  and tip us off if you’re planning to make one of your own! Maybe flash mobs could be the new late meal thing?

The Great Jewish Food Debate: Moderated by Shirley Tilghman

debating jewish food since ever

The Center for Jewish Life and Whig-Clio hosted the annual Latke-Hamentaschen Debate this afternoon in the quest of answering the noble, eternal question of, you guessed it: Latkes or Hamentaschen?

Two traditional Jewish foods: fried potato pancakes vs. triangular pastries made with sweet fillings. Originating in 1946 at UChicago, The Latke-Hamentaschen Debate is an academic, yet hilarious debate concerning the merits of these two unusual foods.

Moderator: President Shirley Tilghman

Team Latke: Visiting psych professor Yarrow Dunham and Quipfire member Jake Robertson ’15

Team Hamentaschen: Philosophy professor Gideon Rosen and Quipfire member Amy Solomon ’14


The Best (out-of-context) Quotes of the Night: 

Shirley T: “She likes to claim she was being prescient, but I suspect she was just stoned.”

Amy Solomon:  “You may be asking how can Jake be defending a latke if he is basically a human hamentaschen: he’s in Triangle, he’s sweet…see though, he’s not filled with poppy seeds or cherries, but simply filled with shit.”

Shirley T: “The most interesting thing about this debater [Rosen], is that he has a dog named Harvey. Harvey Rosen.”

(Apparently, later on when Econ Professor Harvey Rosen got a dog, he named him Gideon. Cute.)

Gideon Rosen: “There’s good music and then there’s Britney Spears.”

Shirley T: “Rosen graduated from Columbia and majored in the metaphysics of Jewish food.”

Jake Robertson: “My mother has a theory that my grandmother is lying and is Jewish.”

Yarrow Dunham:  “The Cardinal Virtues of The Latke.”

Gideon Rosen:  “The latke is down at the bottom with prime matter. Latke is fried prime matter. ”

Yarrow Dunham:  “Which is closer to the type of food served at Hoagie Haven? The answer is latke.”

The winner in the end? Team Hamentaschen.

Welcome to Princeton, Baby Tigers

The results are in. The Princeton admission office made 697 students (plus their parents) very happy today. Of the 3,810 students who applied to Princeton for the single-choice early action (SCEA) deadline, 18.3% were accepted–slightly more selective than last year’s 21.1%. You can read more statistics on the Princeton website, but The Ink is here to give you a more personal introduction to who will–and won’t–be making up the Great Class of 2017 (woah, you kids are young!).

We take you now on a tour of some of the highlights of applicants’ reactions, as posted in the College Confidential “Official Princeton University 2017 SCEA Results” forum. Yes, that’s a real page.

Why was this kid rejected? Because, in his words,

I’m surprised this one didn’t get in. Maybe in regular decision: 

This kid applied SEAC, got in, and is still hoping for an HYP three-peat. Doesn’t SCEA mean you really want to go to the place?

Pretty sure these guys have more impressive resumes than I do. (Seriously. Independent work? Getting a head start on your thesis?) Example #1:

Example #2:

Classic I’m So Awesome They Couldn’t Not Take Me post. (They took him. He’s from Alaska. Also, he has no weaknesses.):

And finally, in true orange-and-black style, some alcohol-induced happiness:

Princeton’s Creative Writing Really Enjoys Making Students Stand in Line

Recently, you may have seen this video of Princeton students waiting in a long line at New South to sign up for Creative Writing sections:

According to the official Princeton Facebook PR, this is just another awesome example of how amazingly popular these classes/professors are, and how enthusiastic students at Princeton are!

"Popular" in the way breadlines during the Great Depression were popular.

Am I the only one who finds this a little…



Luckily, this video was shot during a signup session where students were allowed inside the building. In the past, they’ve kept us queued outside in the freezing NJ cold for several hours. I once arrived at 6:30am…and I wasn’t even the first in line. (Note: many of these students aren’t waiting in line to get into a course– they’ve already gotten in.)

While I understand Creative Writing’s desire to honor a first-come-first-serve system for signing up for the in-demand professor you want, there is something else–something better– we could do. I’m told it’s called “the Internet.” 

[caption id="attachment_13613" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Button-mashing may be arbitrary, but it beats breadlines.[/caption]

But it seems, in true writerly form, Princeton’s CWR department is determined to do it the old-fashioned way.

Circa 1930s, to be exact.

Pton Compliments Spreads Happiness

There’s nothing like a compliment to brighten up your day, right? A new project called Pton Compliments hopes to “spread some love” via Facebook compliments, according to its Facebook page (“Pton Compliments”), which was created on Thursday.

Pton Compliments was inspired by a similar project started at Queen’s University, and the phenomenon has spread to Harvard, Yale, McGill, Columbia, Wash U, Stanford, Penn and William & Mary, among others.

So how does it work? Submit a compliment/shout-out for a fellow Princeton student here and then it will be published anonymously on the Pton Compliments page. The recipient of the compliment gets tagged in the post (once he/she accepts Pton Compliments’ friend request). And happiness is spread. Happy complimenting!

Bonfire In Our Near Future!

Although rumor has it a few Yale pranksters snuck onto campus a week ago to spread some Bulldog mischief the night before the football game (see evidence below), it didn’t stop us from destroying their team 29-7, a victory that secured for the Tigers the almost mythic celebratory Bonfire, unknown to Princeton students of the last 6 years.


This Saturday, on the cusp of the winter season, Princetonians will gather ’round Cannon Green to bask in the warmth of athletic glory and school pride.

For a taste of what’s to come check out footage from the 1926 fire and the 2006 fire. (And if you still aren’t excited, a little USG propaganda should do the trick).

[caption id="attachment_13575" align="aligncenter" width="250"]See you there! See you there![/caption]

Bonfire in our Near Future?

Whether you’ll be attending the Yale game or not, hopefully you’re excited about the (very real) possibility of having a Bonfire (yes capital b) next week. Here’s a brief history of the Bonfire, according to the Princetoniana website:

The Bonfire used to celebrate baseball, not football, victories. And if you were a freshman, well, you had to do some of the grunt work; freshmen were tasked with gathering wood from the surrounding area. So current frosh, start looking for wood now. I mean Hurricane Sandy already did most of the work for you…

An additional feature of the Bonfire celebration used to include an effigy of John Harvard and/or a Yale Bulldog.

From 1950 until 1966, the University had seven bonfires. But since then, there have only been four. Here is proper protocol for the Bonfire, according to Sam Howell ’50:

  • Schedule the Bonfire for the Thursday or Friday following the Yale Game, and treat it as both a Big Three celebration and a rally for the season finale.
  • Assign the Freshman Class to collect scrap lumber, crates, and pallets from University workers, town merchants, and other local sources.
  • Seat a stuffed bulldog in the outhouse.
  • Begin the festivities by unleashing the Band to roust students from across campus.
  • At the foot of Blair Arch, hold a pep rally at which the head coach and team captain make brief remarks.
  • Follow the anointed flarebearers to Cannon Green for ignition.

The last Bonfire occurred in 2006. Come on, Tigers, time to crush Yale!

Princeton and the President: Election Day Roundup

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="240"] Extravaganzaaaa.[/caption]

So we’re all back to campus for the post-fall break grind, some of us a little worse for wear. To all who survived for days without electricity or heat, eating ramen and doing thesis reading by candlelight: RESPECT. To all who stayed on campus and experienced a full 3 traumatizing minutes of losing power: get out of the Bubble (please, let’s). To all who spent fall break on free class trips to Shanghai, Yellowstone, etc: don’t rub it in.

(Actually though, way to choose classes like a boss. May we all be so lucky in this semester‘s course selection.)

We know it’s hard getting back into the swing of things. But whether you’re pumped for classes, still fazed from the hurricane, or out celebrating Jersey-lloween right now, UPC wants to make sure you don’t miss out on the most crucial day of the week: Election Day! Voting time! The future of America in your hands! Princeton’s got loads of political activity lined up over the next few days, and we’ve compiled it all for you here:

  • VOTING. If you’re registered to vote on campus and didn’t read Dean Dunne’s email, check this campus map to see where you should cast your ballot tomorrow. Essentially everyone who lives on campus should be voting in Icahn Lab – unless you’re living in one of the eating clubs, in which case you’ll vote in the COS building by the Friend Center. Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Bring your prox!
  • Election Night. Whig-Clio is hosting a viewing party “extravaganza” from 7 p.m. on in Whig Hall. If you’re a die-hard Democrat or Republican, head to the basement or third floor respectively, where the College Dems and Republicans will be headquartered. If you’re more moderate or just intimidated by the aggressive political debater kids, show up for free stuff! They’ll have pizza, red and blue cupcakes, and free election themed drawstring backpacks from 7:30 on.

Continue reading…