What I remember most vividly are three straight days of no sleep as we crashed the first issue.
We had launched Nassau Weeklyin part because we wanted to practice a different kind of journalism—more feature-driven, accommodating to individual voices, and reflective of the campus experience—than what could be found in The Daily Princetonian.
Back in the Stone Age, we would retype each submission into a typesetting machine. The machine would spit out a long, unbroken strip of copy, which we would cut and paste on page proofs that were then collected and shuttled down to The Princeton Packet’s plant for printing.
That first issue, with Lisa Belkin ‘82’s cover piece about the long-tenured Dinky conductor, included an unflattering piece about the Prince. But in our insomniac haze the cut-and-paste process caused paragraphs to be transposed, and the exposé on our rival made little logical sense. We felt like the worst kind of glass-house-dwelling stone-throwers.
Then word filtered back to us that Prince editors had taken the issue and read our critical story and, after scratching their heads, pulled out a pair of scissors. They cut the paragraphs out and rearranged them, so they could decipher the calumnies we upstarts had directed their way.
That lifted our mood of gloom. We may have screwed up, but we mattered.
Everyone associated with The Nass over the past 40 years has been part of the ongoing proof: There was indeed a place on campus for both The Prince and a worthy competitor.
Alexander Wolff ‘80 is a writer for Sports Illustrated.