Princeton’s Funkiest Gargoyles: A Photographic Tour

Princeton has a lot of gargoyles. As students we don’t notice much, staring at our phones while we walk to class, but we are surrounded by stone animals doing crazy shit.

Technically, Princeton’s gargoyles aren’t really gargoyles. Gargoyles in its literal sense refers solely to sculptures that sprout from gutters and are used to convey water off of building surfaces. Those types of gargoyles were mostly popular in the medieval era and have kind of gone out of fashion in the past few centuries, along with other items of the time period like tunics for men. Instead, most gargoyles fall more accurately under the categories of chimeras and grotesques, sculptures attached to building surfaces that serve only an aesthetic purpose. Princeton has a lot of these.

Below are photos of some of Princeton’s best. Hopefully, next time you’re walking around campus, you will look up from your iMessage or Twitter or Facebook and find yourself staring at a monkey with a camera. It turns out, this gargoyle above 1879 arch was sculpted by Gutzon Borglum, the same man who sculpted Mt. Rushmore.



These tigers outside McCosh Hall appear to be unphased by the snow. Their majesty is only challenged by that of the adjacent A/C unit.


This entrance to the side of the chapel is lined with various animals, including some dragons:


And on the subject of animals, probably almost no one knows that Guyot Hall is surrounded by over 65 animal gargoyles. Yes, you probably just screamed in amazement and disbelief, “but that can’t possibly be true!” but you heard me right. Even cooler, the east side of Guyot, which houses the biology department, is littered with gargoyles of living species while the west side, home to the geology department, is covered by gargoyles of now extinct animals. Some examples include this crocodile:

And this dinosaur head:



And while on the subject of animals, this goat is reading a book:


Moving up campus, attached to the Firestone Library Trustees Reading Room, hidden behind some trees, is this guy playing a flute. Who knew? It turns out there are sixteen gargoyles that line the sides of the reading room.

[caption id="attachment_16135" align="aligncenter" width="515"] Full disclosure: this picture is taken from the Flickr account of a wonderful photographer with the username Kitty Fox. Thanks, Kitty Fox![/caption]


Right across from Firestone, above the archway of East Pyne that faces towards the library, is this pretty fly gargoyle. Apparently, the gargoyle is supposed to be a metaphor for how the university opens up the eyes and the minds of its students.

My personal favorite gargoyle features an old-school football player running on top of the entrance to McCosh 10:


But the most famous Princeton gargoyle resides in the graduate college. Called the “Joy Ride,” it shows a young man, assumedly a student, driving away in a car with his date by his side. It was so famous, it was even the subject of its own New York Times article back in 1927:


And here it is, in all its glory, courtesy of Princeton Alumni Weekly:

If you want to read more about many of these gargoyles, you should check out this book, lined to here as a pdf:

The Princeton Footnotes, BodyHype, and diSiac Drop Some Collaborative Funk

Princeton University is famous for many reasons, but its funk scene has never been one of them. But today the Princeton Footnotes may have changed that with the release of their music video cover of the hit song Uptown Funk. The video features the singing Footnotes—decked out in colorful, albeit somewhat stereotypically Princeton, outfits—dancing around Princeton’s campus with members of both the BodyHype and diSiac dance companies.

The collaborative video was the brainchild of Jacob Schatz ’15, a member of the Footnotes since freshman year. Schatz said that he came up with the idea of making a music video around Thanksgiving, just when the Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars song blew up.

“In the last two weeks before winter break the Footnotes decided we were going to make a full court press to make a video of Uptown Funk,” Schatz said, explaining that he arranged the song over winter break with the help of Casey Kolb ’15 and Chris Snyder ’17, the musical directors of the a capella group.

While arranging, Schatz realized that the video would benefit from the inclusion of other performing arts groups on campus.

“Over winter break I had the idea to get BodyHype and diSiac involved so we wouldn’t have to do all the choreography ourselves and also to showcase some of the other performing groups on campus,” Schatz said.

By the time the group got back to campus for reading period, they immediately began recording the song so they could film the video before intersession.

“Our recording was due to the dance groups on Dean’s Date,” Schatz said jokingly, explaining that they needed to get the audio recording to the groups as quickly as possible so they could begin choreographing.

Eamon Foley ’15 choreographed and directed the BodyHype segments while Colby Hyland ’16 and Angie Chiraz ’16 arranged and choreographed the diSiac segments. Nonny Okwelogu ’15, with the help of members of the Princeton Film Productions, filmed and edited the video, which was shot over the course of just six days during finals.

“Without any of them, this would have been a boring old, singing-to-the-camera music video. But with their help we made it something more,” Schatz said. “The collaborative aspect of this project definitely fueled its success.”

Schatz hopes that besides being catchy and enjoyable to watch, the video will shed light on the talented students at Princeton and serve as a catalyst for future collaborative projects.

“It shows the untapped potential of the art community at Princeton because we have so many talented people but everyone sort of keeps their heads down and keeps to themselves,” he said. “And if you pick your head up you might end up doing something like this.”


An Introduction to Princeton’s Virtual Bubble

Are you a post-thesis senior with little to do but scour the Internet for amusing Princeton-related tidbits during your last two months on campus? A recently-admitted pre-frosh who is already running out of online material to fuel your imagination as you dream about your arrival on campus?

Don’t worry, we’ve done all the work for you! UPC is proud to present an introduction to Princeton’s plethora of online sources to sustain your procrastination in the next four years.

Here are some of our go-to gems:


Platform for cross-campus complaints.

Tiger Admirers

Although the Facebook page seems to be (temporarily?) unavailable, this site gets a lot of action (and generates a lot of action) throughout the school year as students fawn over their classmates.

And to give you a taste of some college-level literary analysis, watch English Professor Jeff Nunokawa’s original interpretation of the text here.



Pi Phi in the library is you classic (spoof) sorority girl with a twist!

Princeton Horse – self-explanatory


An excellent source for non-Princeton-related procrastination, but when the two are combined, who can resist?


Your very own Class of 2018 Facebook Page! (increases in value as time goes on)



And, as always, your number 1 site for your years on campus, and beyond: The Ink!



@Princeton Tweets

For those of you who haven’t yet discovered the many advantages of following your Princeton professors on Twitter (a practice that has previously gained national attention), we at the Ink have decided to round up some gems from a few of the most prolific tweeters on campus, including the University itself.

Like that one time Princeton and Harvard exchanged some official Twitter #nerd shade:

(Context: Princeton was sharing Professor Kintali’s new site True Shelf.)

Harvard’s cheeky response:

Princeton’s #shady retort:

We’re not sure who runs the Official Princeton Twitter (not enough #hashtags to be ODUS) so we’ll just assume it’s Martin Mbugua.

Or that one time prolific writer Joyce Carol Oates (also a Breaking Bad fan) and philosophy prof Gilbert Harman debated whether Neitzsche was in hell.

Or when Jay-Co retweeted Mike Tyson:

While neuroscience professor Sam Wang throws out some innuendo-laden food links on occasion:

The answer is gross.

Reminding You That Reunions Are Ever-Approaching

[caption id="attachment_10369" align="alignleft" width="250" caption="Reunions 2002: Keg Bed"]Reunions 2002: Keg Bed[/caption]

Like an atom bomb or the end of the world or the Macy’s Day Parade. Whether or not you knew it, Reunions (i.e. “the perennial Ivy League blowout kegger” referred to in a GQ exposé last year) are coming. Can’t you hear it — the pitter-patter of hundreds of alumni footsteps, canes and wheelchairs, the slurping from special edition beer cans, the loudness of Reunions’ token wardrobe?

Maybe not. Or, at least not yet, with Houseparties a few days away and all. But rest assured, the countdown has begun at, which gives an up-to-the-second reminder of the time between now and when the May-hem begins.

[caption id="attachment_10365" align="alignleft" width="515" caption="This screenshot will become increasingly less relevant over time."]This screen shot will become increasingly less relevant over time.[/caption]

Personally, the design of the site seems all too familiar.  That font and the angular, borderless orange rectangle schema are symbols of official University webpage underdesign. I’m talking about those sites only seen momentarily in the deepest stages of room draw. Also, how did we get the web address? Not that it’s the most desireable web address (certainly not as desireable as, the homepage of PJ’s Pancake House), but the page doesn’t even mention the University.

Anyhow, Reunions are all about bold moves and in the Orange Bubble, no other reunions (lowercase) exist.  Just ask the folks over at, who call it “an experiment focused on age and agelessness, immaturity and maturation.”

Turbulent Regime Changes at Princeton FML

fmlpostIt’s official: the third generation of Princeton FML moderators has arrived. A quick rundown of recent events …

As any faithful FML reader knows by now, Mod 1.0 Raymond Hsu ’11 recently passed the mantle to a pair of new moderators (their identities remain as yet unknown). Mods 2.0 announced the beginning of their term on January 4 and few readers were happy to hear it, if the +/- differential is any indication.

Last night, however, Mods 2.0 put an untimely end to their reign: both of them resigned within four hours of each other, citing “work and life as being too overwhelming, that they weren’t prepared, that they were thrown in at the harshest time possible, etc.”* Hsu reflected further on their decision: “I’m disappointed to see them go, but I completely understand their reasons and do not resent them in any way.” Their term, albeit brief, saw plenty of grumbling. Many commenters criticized their moderating style and the infrequency of updates. They were also the (perhaps unwitting) subjects of one of the most unpopular posts in the site’s history. As for their legacy, that is for the history books to decide; if nothing else, their six-day term will probably be one of the shortest in the annals of Princeton FML.

And as those moderators stepped down, a new duo rose to the challenge. Hsu handpicked them — one of them had been a finalist in the Mod 2.0 selection process — and Mods 3.0 officially announced their arrival on January 10.

Continue reading…

Thoughts from the Mod, Vol. III: Choosing a Successor

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="261" caption="You could be the Chosen One. Mod II."]You could be the Chosen One.[/caption]

There comes a point where every king must step down from the throne. Even our Glorious Mod.

Yes, all good things come to an end. However, as the late 90’s heartily affirmed, that means there’s also a new beginning! And this one could involve you! A tantalizing excerpt from a Mod interview:

You might think moderating during exams is therapeutic, but really, all it does is trick me into thinking I’ve accomplished something. Filing my taxes, updating my resume, and even folding my laundry all have similar effects. Assuming I make it to senior year, I’ll probably hold a “moderator bicker” during the fall semester so that PrincetonFML won’t be to blame for me being hopelessly behind on my thesis.

Um. In case you missed it:

“moderator bicker”

Continue reading…

Muldoon on Ke$ha: Tiger Mag gets love from New Yorker, HuffPo, IvyGate

[UPDATED BELOW] The Princeton Tiger, our resident humor rag, has been absolutely tearing up the internets lately. Their latest video, “Discussions in Contemporary Poetry: A conversation with Paul Muldoon,” features some erudite commentary from our beloved Professor of Creative Writing. The unlikely subject: Ke$ha’s “Tik Tok.” See the deep poetic genius in action:

Juxtaposition of high and low culture! (Especially enjoyed the Lear reference.) It’s funny! Apparently, it’s this funny. And this funny. And this funny. They throw up an adorable shoutout to their poetry editor: “Oh Paul, you totally make it pop.”

So, Tiger Mag, a tip of the hat — for making this video, for making waves. And for enriching the vocabulary of a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet. (Notable additions: “crunk,” “junk.”)

UPDATE: These guys picked up on it too. Viral status is imminent.

UPDATE II: And also the Village Voice and the New York Times (!).

Write, Sleep, Blog

clockOn March 28, an anonymous senior — fittingly anonymous, I should add, because in a way, he is every senior — set out to write a thesis.  His page count was zero, but his hopes were high: “This is gonna be an adventure!” he exclaimed.  His deadline?  Wednesday, April 7.

Thesis Pieces is his story.  And I promise you — it’s the second best blog you’ll read all day.

We follow the writer from mundanity (“Can’t write because my pen died.  Page count: 0/100”) to insanity (“I figured out a way to solve all my  thesis woes!  All I need to do is figure out a way to send a cyborg killing machine back in time!”).  We laugh when he laughs, we cry when he cries.

We don’t, however, sleep when he sleeps: “I slept two hours last… sleeping time,” he confesses.  “On a bench in Firestone.”

But from our comparatively well-rested perch we urge our hero onwards, willing him the strength to vanquish that greatest enemy of all: the ever-ticking clock.

Some of these are going to be Princeton students

[caption id="attachment_5155" align="alignleft" width="250" caption="Fifth? Or fourth circle of hell?"]colconf1[/caption]

Admissions decisions loom over potential members of the Class of 2014. Tomorrow, April 1 at 5:00 pm Eastern, Princeton will inform a little over 26,000 students whether they will be able to attend.

Yikes. Maybe that sounds a little too grave.

(Also, April Fools seems like such a lousy date; I myself, in my initial stages of denial over the fact that I was rejected, might pray for at least 20 minutes that the school was just pranking me).

At any rate, a significant percentage of applicants seem to be tweaking out on online forums like College Confidential (see Princeton’s portion of College Confidential here). 

Continue reading…

Picking classes just got way less annoying

[caption id="attachment_5146" align="aligncenter" width="515" caption="Ice, ice, baby - where were you freshman year?"]Screen shot 2010-03-31 at 2.12.02 PM[/caption]

You know when you’re picking classes and you found the perfect SA and an English class that looks awesome and you’re really excited, and then it turns out they’re at the same time? Or when you spend five hours trying to decide between ECO 101 and ECO 100? (Don’t do it if you don’t have to.)

Well it looks like Gyeong-Sik Choi ’10 is looking out for you, because he’s created the new Integrated Course Engine. Or ICE.

Besides having a sweet name, the searchable engine takes all the classes you’re thinking of signing up for, compiles reviews from the Student Course Guide and course descriptions in different panes, and lays them out for you in a neat little schedule.

Bam. Course-picking just got a little easier.

(image via Michael Yaroshefsky’s email to USG News subscribers)