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I am the staffer stuck in 48 University Place. Please help.

<h6>48 University Place, Home of the Daily Princetonian</h6>
<h6>Benjamin Ball / The Daily Princetonian</h6>
48 University Place, Home of the Daily Princetonian
Benjamin Ball / The Daily Princetonian

The following content is mostly satirical and mostly fictional. 

I went to the first ‘Prince’ Satire meeting because I lost the TigerMag invitation in my inbox. It was in a conference room on the fourth floor. I thought it was basically nondescript — maybe a bit villian-esque — but little did I know the image of that room was about to be burned onto my retinas for the rest of eternity.


The first thing they asked us was if we were dishwasher safe. I was young. I was naive. I thought it was funny. 

Then they locked the door. And they told us to start writing. 

Mirth has become my coping mechanism. Whenever I get sad, my subconscious is now conditioned to turn it into an Onion-style headline. None of them are funny. None of them are ever funny.

One by one the others started escaping. Under the pile of ‘Prince’ hoodies we have for a bed, they dug a tunnel with their MacBooks. They left at night, in the glow of the ‘Prince’-branded neon light. All of them are now Econ majors — we have a GroupMe. 

I am physically incapable of bailing on a commitment so I just stayed. My classes were no longer important. My family was no longer important. I started writing “Self” pieces for The Prospect, about my feelings. But really, I was thinking about how to blame the administration for my problems and pitch it as a joke.

Soon there were only four of us left. I think the Managing Editors knew about the escapes, but they didn't care — as long as there were articles by Tuesday for each print edition. 


They still have meetings every Sunday, under the cover of darkness (at 3 p.m. — they put up blinds.) During one they made me Associate Satire Editor, because I was still around. I had never said a single funny thing in one of these meetings. It didn't matter. Now I am still here, unnoticed, forgotten.

Once, I believed, as we all did, in the power of satire to enact change. No more. This is the end. Now I know that the only power of satire is to provoke more satire, more satire which nobody reads . . . 

I'm going. It was the TigerMag article that convinced me. We had to smuggle in a print copy, because their website hasn’t updated since 1997. But it was enough, now I'm going. It's over. If you're going to remember me — don't read my article on Nietzsche . . .

Daniel Viorica '25 was an Associate Satire Editor of The Daily Princetonian. He has since largely recovered.

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