Fresh off the plane from Thanksgiving break and intimidated by the flocks of athletes in the Wu Dining Hall, I made my way directly to Nassau St. one Sunday evening, excited to be reintroduced to my staple restaurant for all things savory and pedestrian: Mamouns. If only they hadn’t closed early, I wouldn’t have found myself in what I thought was the food desert of the street: Starbucks. Much to my surprise, a sensation I don’t feel often or really totally understand from a philosophical standpoint—free will is an illusion, as you know—I was faced with the most incredible emporium of overpriced snacks and goods.
What a treat, I said to myself, partially in earnest, partially in all good fun. As I pondered on both the potential for gastronomical fulfillment and the horrors of capitalism, I slowly shuffled forward in line, trying to decide which one snack to go for. At the last moment, I threw my hands up in resignation and bought all of them. Here are some of the snacks I got, as well as my thoughts on them:
Organic Chickpea Puffs: Hippeas – Far Out Fajita flavored
Ensconced in a flaky chili powder reminiscent of that one last peppercorn that was stuck in your teeth from your meal that you bit open like an hour later that makes you want to die, this puffy chickpea snack was a delight in a bag, both syntactically and semantically. (I’m taking a class on the philosophy of language, so if you didn’t get that reference, start thinking about fulfilling your distribution requirements). The crunch of each puff is not only satisfying, but also entertaining, a blip on the cosmic map of time and space, a rupture in the local sound-space equilibrium of your all-too-quiet mouth in our Stars for Stoners precept, which, might I remind you, does not have optional attendance.
At only 120 calories, this responsible treat pairs perfectly with a tall cappuccino (or so I’ve been told; caffeine, as far as I know, is an uncontrolled substance, and so I don’t trust it [or the government]). The only drawback is the small serving size. But you know what they say: good things come in small packages! (Not your Blackboard posts, though. I mean, come on, three sentences? Were you late for a meeting with the Queen? Because I’ve been in a similar situation, and I was still able to pull together a Blackboard post on Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, that my preceptor at the time lauded as “anything but concise.”)
Rip van Waffles: Caramel Flavored
The interpenetration of filling and shell, Rip van Waffles represent the paragon of late Cubist art, namely Picasso’s exploration of the relationship between form and figure. Yes, I am considering Art History as a major, but only because I visited a friend’s home over Thanksgiving and noticed a Brancusi sculpture in his living room and thought to myself, why can’t I have that?
The buttery surface of the treat might leave your hands a little oily, but sometimes you have to sacrifice cleanliness for some enjoyment. Don’t forget to wash your hands before using your computer, though! Keys that shine in the architecture library overhead lights because of your finger grease are not only a class signifier, but are also straight up disgusting. But you didn’t hear it from me!
I recently discovered that Rip van Waffles was a startup made by a teenager in the past few years, and so unfortunately I now can’t eat them anymore, as I’m temporarily boycotting startup culture ever since my Uber driver gave me a poor rating because I “wouldn’t stop talking about the communist overtures in HBO’s new original series Insecure.” But that doesn’t mean you can’t have them! At $2.50, they are possibly the least satisfying snack for your buck, but then again, satisfaction is a state of the bourgeois elite, and is that really what you want to be emulating? I’ll send you an n + 1 reading on the topic, if you’re interested.
Kale Chips?!: Cool Ranch
If you’ve been looking for a way to announce to the room that you hate yourself and everything your parents fought for, look no further than bringing in a bag of kale chips. A concept promulgated by Whole Food’s agenda to normalize vegetables appropriated as fun snack foods (see also: sweet potato chips, spinach tortilla chips, veggie booty, etc.) kale chips takes its place in the line of fire, the firing squad: late capitalism. Or is it the firing squad? I’m sorry, sometimes I get a little carried away with the imaginative consciousness of my writing; my history professor keeps referring to my analogies as “troubling.”
Dusted in an inexplicably yellow flavoring, something about these chips feels uneasy, much like most of the narrative of Thoreau’s Walden, the plot summary of which I recently posted on my APC 199: Math Alive Piazza page, in lieu of ever actually challenging myself to think quantitatively. If you have a chance, give it a read! Something about your participation in class tells me you’re not getting through all the reading anyway, so I’m sure you have some time!
That’s all I have time for today! I’ve got to run so I can finish my latest op-ed contribution to the Daily Princetonian regarding my absolute disdain with any recent movement by a minority group in which I, an able-bodied, privileged male, am not made the centerpiece. Talk about reverse racism, am I right! Anyways, have fun with these snacks, and I’ll see you next week in precept!