Spires and Gargoyles – December 2014


Here at The Princeton Tiger, we typically put together an issue in a single heart-pounding weekend of production marked by the debauched trinity of sex, drugs, and rock ’n’ roll. But come Sunday morning, we awoke defeated to hazy memories of 48 sweat-drenched hours of furious masturbation, candy cigarettes, and Mike Love-era Beach Boys. We had failed spectacularly.

The Kawaii issue was canceled. Every copy of “~ * :3 War and Peace :3 * ~” was burned. We bid adieu to “The Life and Times of Libertarian Sailor Moon.” I personally deleted 43 images of President Eisgruber’s face painstakingly photoshopped onto Hamtaro.

We needed a replacement fast, so our editors took the path of least resistance and used the time machine in the basement of Ivy. The club uses it to recreationally burn down old-growth forest, but our mission was to buy time by writing an entire issue…in the past.

One by one, our editors stepped inside, tearfully saying goodbye to the world they knew, making the ultimate sacrifice and changing history forever in the name of The Princeton Tiger.

Just one made it back. The others were tragically lost to the sands of time, and their names will forever be memorialized on our Wall of Honor in our penthouse offices in 48 University Place (NOTICE: Tiger is looking for talented, editorial-minded students to engage in a work-hard, play-hard environment; the position is unpaid, and applicants must be able to receive college credit).

The lone surviving editor stumbled out of the time machine, naked, covered in blood and screaming. He was a baby, because sometimes this happens, but in his tiny fists, he clutched historically documented systems of oppression and an entire Tiger issue stolen from the 1950s. Though there was ultimately little difference between the two, I made the executive decision to immediately publish the latter.

You hold that issue in your hands now. After some rigorous editorial alterations (I swapped out some bylines), the content has held up fairly well, largely because Princeton University has changed surprisingly little in the past 60 years. In the ’50s, campus still begrudgingly wiped itself with single-ply; Forbes was even farther away; and Our Eternal Time Lord Christopher Eisgruber still lurked in Nassau Hall, though he had not yet assumed his physical form. Some jokes never get old!

But some things have changed. Back in the ’50s, Tiger was not the leading journal of eco-feminist thought that it is today. And though this issue may look comfortingly familiar to our one subscribing alumnus, it may be a shock to many of our readers. Rest assured that its differences are attributable to traveling through time to steal an issue from the 1950s, not spending more time developing this plot device than we did selling advertisements.

I cannot devote much time to comforting disgruntled readers or nurturing the heroic baby-editor, because this is my last issue as chairman. These years at Tiger have been an utter joy, and I could not be more grateful to spend it with the most rascally ne’er-do-wells that have ever been. Someone once told me that happiness is only an expression of nostalgia, that you can never be truly happy experiencing the present. I don’t know if I believe that, but it is time to move on. Getting here was half the fun anyway.

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