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Nick Marsh ’90 graduated from the University with a degree in history and no job. Today, the longtime entrepreneur is CEO of Chop’t Creative Salad Company, a quickly expanding casual restaurant chain that recently opened up its 51st shop in Princeton, N.J.
After your family says grace, someone asks you what you do for a living and your perfect facade begins to unravel.
The holiday season is a time for nostalgia. It’s a time for curling up in your softest blanket, wrapping your hands around a mug of hot chocolate, and watching the same movies you’ve watched every year since birth. The month of December has a strange, universal déjà vu. As your neighbors hang their same old Christmas lights and every department store begins to decorate in red and green, you see a world made timeless. A world you’ve visited every year for as long as you can remember.
Thanksgiving is a flurry of orange and red cornucopia cardboard cutouts stuck onto supermarket windows and kindergarteners waving turkey-themed arts and crafts at their parents. Thanksgiving, for us, began with Dranksgiving and ended with Cyber Monday, an almost weeklong period of absolute excess. It’s not just Princeton. Overeating and overspending are ubiquitous at this time of year. I’ve almost stopped associating Thanksgiving with Pilgrims and Native Americans, and even less with counting my blessings and actually giving thanks. I think of Thanksgiving as a couple of days off when I can overindulge in cornbread, stuffing, and gravy (the best parts of the spread) while watching endless commercials about Black Friday specials. Our materialist culture, the commercialization of the holiday by corporations, and the fact that most stores now have “early Black Friday” sales which begin on Thanksgiving Day aren’t entirely to blame.
As an international student I knew what Thanksgiving was before coming to the United States. I didn’t understand, however, the importance of the holiday (as far as family gatherings go) and was baffled by my American peers' insistence on going home for the holiday. This past Thanksgiving was my eighth since I first came to the United States as a student, and I have certainly had some diverse Thanksgivings that I think other international students might encounter. (Disclaimer: actual experiences may vary…)
The two scenes are almost identical: both take place in the aftermath of slam poetry, surrounded by smoky blacklight and boxed-in-bodies trembling to the rhythm of words, sounds, memories, and feelings.
I always thought I was good at improv. In class, I could win a debate on a topic I knew nothing about or improvise my way through a confrontation with a disgruntled voter when needed.
Break kicked off in the most classically fall way possible: The green scenery was long gone, replaced by a spectrum of warm-colored leaves, and the long-awaited crispness in the air had finally arrived. It was the perfect weather to finally bundle up in your favorite sweater, cherish the end of midterms, and look forward to enjoying the objectively greatest season (this cannot be disputed). However, unless you haven’t been in New Jersey for long enough to know better by now, you probably suspected that the coming week was not about to be smooth-sailing autumn bliss.
Fall break generally brings feelings of joy and excitement at the prospect of flying home to reunite with family on the other side of the country. For me, fall break meant driving a town and a half over. My hometown, East Windsor, is only 20 minutes away from campus.
Fall break. For most, those two words evoke images of relaxation, catching up on TV, sleeping, visiting family, leaving midterm essays until the last possible second, and sleeping some more. It is essentially a week-long nap mixed with a frantic bingeing of “Stranger Things” season two.
This week, the Sexpert interviewed Margaret Nachtigall ’84, MD, an obstetrician and gynecologist based in New York City. She majored in biology at Princeton and went to medical school at NYU. She did her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at NYU and then had a fellowship at Yale in reproductive endocrinology, and she was kind enough to answer some questions relevant to college students.
For many, fall break meant a return home to relax and unwind. For Abraham Cruz-Pena ’21, fall break meant a week-long journey through Canada, exploring parks and historic sites. Cruz-Pena and 10 other Princeton students departed from Princeton early Saturday morning in a large white van that they decorated with orange window paint. The trip was designed to be very budget-friendly, so the group stayed at Airbnb locations. Cruz-Pena said that “it was really fun cramming ten people into two rooms. We really got to know each other.” For Cruz-Pena, this was his first time in Canada and it was a unique chance to be immersed in another culture.
With most Princetonians fleeing campus far and wide over fall break, culinary options for those of us trapped in the Bubble were few. With only RoMa open for meals, the loss of breakfast in favor of brunch for the whole week, a one swipe per meal limit, and, most depressingly, the disappearance of Late Meal, the gastronomic delights on Nassau Street and beyond looked all the more appealing. This week we pitted Mamoun’s Falafel against Princeton Soup and Sandwich Company in the ultimate battle for King of Cheap Eats.
Ana Asensio’s award-winning film, “Most Beautiful Island,” will be featured in the Princeton Independent Film Festival (PRINDIE) alongside a Q&A on Thursday.
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.
For 10 years, Princeton’s University Health Services has offered a series of programs to promote mindfulness and meditation in the community, ranging from a Women's Meditation Series to Mindfulness for Grad Students to Koru Mindfulness, a course developed specifically for college-aged students.
We all made it through midterms, arguably one of the most stressful times of the year. Having two exams, your D2, a COS 126 assignment that just won't work, and a paper to write all in one week amid regular schoolwork can definitely feel overwhelming. Drowning in our own little struggles, though, we sometimes fail to remember that all the members of the Princeton community have their own stresses to deal with, academic or otherwise. This week, we interviewed members of the Princeton community to get some advice, put our own stresses into perspective, and learn more about the community around us.
Congratulations: If you’re a Princeton student reading this article, that means it’s Thursday, my editors have run out of content and decided to run my trash, and most importantly, you’ve made it through midterms week! Pat yourself on the back, have an extra cookie in the d-hall, and celebrate! However, we all know that many sacrifices had to be made during that week, and we know that there were also many casualties along the way; some lost sleep, some lost friends, and some simply lost their sanity.