The Types of Students You Meet at Princeton University (dessert-style)| Nov 8, 2017
The Profiterole (cream puff): The person who talks a lot during precept but says little, sits right next to the professor, and makes direct eye contact at every possible moment. Constantly laments how pretentious things are before saying pretentious things, i.e. “God this sounds so pretentious, but when my family went to our summer house in St. Petersburg….” Claims to know Eisgruber personally.
see also Crème Pâtissière (pastry cream filling): The person sitting next to the Profiterole who nods at everything he says and encourages his behavior.
see also The Boxed Brownie: This person knows she doesn’t do the work for precept, yet leers at the Profiterole for being excited about the reading, even though the Profiterole is sacrificing himself to save the Brownie’s ass, basically.
Chocolate Ganache Tart (70% cocoa solids and cream in a flaky buttery crust): The person that is still stuck in the first week of freshman year. Will bring up “What is Populism?” or “Our Declaration” to spark conversation.
The Soufflé (a baked egg dish notorious for deflating if not baked carefully): In those awkward mixers Princeton organizes for first years, the first thing this person does after you rattle off your name, where you’re from, your major, whether you went on OA or CA, and what your residential college is, is ask you what extracurriculars you did in high school, and whether or not you were good at them. It is important to be honest about the magnitude of your accomplishments as to allow the Soufflé to feel justified in bragging about their own. The Soufflé experiences the impostor syndrome but won’t admit it.
The Baklava (a Middle Eastern sweet, nutty, flaky dessert): This person went on Bridge Year and doesn’t make an effort to become friends with you because he has already found his lifetime soulmate abroad.
The Tarte Tatin (the baked-upside-down pastry that’s flipped right-side up when served): The straitjacketed person on your floor that you don’t meet until the third week because they’re always in their room doing something diligent because they were probably their high school valedictorian… until you meet them at a Science Olympiad pregame and they are turnt all the way up.
Salted Caramel Crème Brûlée (smooth sweet and salty pudding sealed on top with a hard-crack sugar): The person that is hard to get to know, so you invest a lot in coaxing her from her shell. When you finally get through her defenses, you are pleasantly surprised by the sweet way in which she conveys a downright sardonic sense of humor. You sense a tinge of vindictiveness and take a mental note not to cross this person.
The Dutch Baby Pancake (a baked pancake): The person who will write his class notes, type his class notes, print them and color-coordinate them, and then file them into color-coordinated folders, and uses personalized stationery that you can only find in an obscure specialty stationery store.
The Madeleine (a small vanilla shell-shaped cake you used to eat by the box): This person is just your average Joe reading a machine-learning manual during dinner. He doesn’t socialize unless you talk first. But he’ll always affirm what you say, especially when you’ve had a difficult week, even if what you say is worthy of being quoted in the Verbatim section of the Nassau Weekly (i.e., it should not have been voiced aloud).
The Gâteaux Napoléon (stacked puff pastry alternated with pastry cream or jam and fresh fruit, commonly topped with almonds): Your roommate who seems carefully constructed and on top of their stuff but in 3 a.m. heart-to-hearts reveals herself to be as precariously balanced and full of angst as you are.
The Galette (a free-form rustic pie made with a single crust of pastry like a pizza): This person comes from a rural town that no one knows about and must always refer to their hometown via the closest well-known city. They subsequently go through an identity crisis after their third year at Princeton, when they realize that in assimilating to the preppy Princeton culture and majoring in economics they’ve forgotten their roots and sold their soul.
The Macaron (a notoriously-difficult-to-make French cookie that has taken the internet by storm): This person is really hard to please. He looks at you quizzically when you come to office hours and tells you you should be happy with a B+. Somehow, everyone worships him because he speaks 10 different languages and earned tenure in his 30s. He is internet famous and would be a meme if a certain member of the administrative staff did not occupy the position of Supreme Meme.