Thursday, October 23, 2014

Where to Eat When Your Parents Come to Town: Part Two

by Zoe Baker-Peng

Last February, we published the previous part to this series on ‘Where to Eat When Your Parents Come to Town’. While looking up Hewitt’s dinner menu can be extraordinarily exciting (what will it be tonight?!), sometimes it’s a relief to eat outside of campus confines and venture out into one of the world’s greatest culinary capitals. New York City offers a plethora of cuisines and dining experiences and while you can, of course, get delicious food at affordable prices, sometimes delectable dishes remain positioned in a higher price range. Since Parents’ Weekend approaches, and you may be lucky enough to have your folks visiting and offering to take you to dinner, here are some more restaurant recommendations to pique your interest and taste buds.


A new take on pigs in blankets
Alder’s chic and modern interior still manages to feel cozy and inviting, and lends itself perfectly to Chef Wylie Dufresne’s aim of producing “a modern interpretation of a public house”. Aged wooden boards line the ceiling and exposed white bricks run the length of the wall, furthering the charming atmosphere created by a low buzz of voices when the restaurant is full and the large glass window that offers scenes of busy New York outside. The mix of modern and rustic décor is echoed in both the concept behind and the presentation of the food. Dufresne, and executive chef Jon Bignelli, rework pub classics such as pigs in blankets and French onion soup, as well as produce innovative dishes such as their ‘Rye Pasta’. The Rye Pasta is a gustatory delight – the rye flavor is wonderfully distinct and its pairing with shaved pastrami and pasta is an intriguing take on the classic New York deli pastrami on rye. ‘Pigs in a Blanket’ uses the traditional concept of sausages wrapped in a type of pastry dough, but defines itself with the unusual use of Chinese sausage as well as sweet chili sauce and Japanese mustard. The result is delightful; be sure to try these when you dine here. The ‘French Onion Soup Rings’ are both humorous and tasty: large fried onion rings (think gourmet style) arrive at your table, drizzled with a thick, sumptuous onion gravy. All of the dishes on the menu are enticing and inventive, although portion sizes tend to run on the smaller size. I recommend ordering several dishes for the table to share or at least two for yourself, if you’re feeling hungry.

Address: 157 Second Avenue (between 9th and 10th streets), NYC, 10003
Phone: 212-539-1900
Reservations: Recommended but not necessarily essential
Price: $$$, price range ~$31-60 per person.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Rocking Out to “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

By Morgan Wu

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve most likely heard talk of a Broadway show in which Neil Patrick Harris portrays a transgender woman and rock star named Hedwig (not the owl). What you didn’t hear is that the Tony-Award-winning musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch is about so much more than that.

Make sure to check out Michael C. Hall's
performance as Hedwig! 
Hedwig (portrayed by The Book of Mormon original cast member Andrew Rannells until October 12th) is an “internationally ignored song stylist” from East Berlin, whose botched sex-change operation left her with an “angry inch.” Although rabid Neil Patrick Harris fans may be disappointed to hear that Harris departed the production in late August, I am pleased to report that Rannells was a revelation, more than living up to the high standard set by his predecessor. Supported by a scrappy six-member band–the Angry Inch–Rannells as Hedwig manages to strut, sweat, and leap through the production and make it look easy. He disappears into the role of Hedwig until the woman strutting around the stage was a completely separate entity from the television and Broadway star–and not just because of Hedwig’s enormous blond wig. A fellow audience member even commented at the stage door post-show, “I kept forgetting it was Andrew underneath those costumes.”

The show is staged as a “one-night-only” concert performed on the set of the fictional Hurt Locker: The Musical. Throughout the show, Hedwig keeps up a steady rapport with the audience, expounding upon the events that led her to move from Germany to America, and recounting how she came to be “internationally ignored.”

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Pump Up Your Fall Wardrobe!

by Clara Butler

Once the outside temperatures start to fall back down and the homework seems to pile up, it’s easy to grab the closest items that smell (somewhat) clean and leave that resting bitch face on in case anyone tries to give you shit for it. But instead of sweats, why not treat yourself to a few fall items that will carry your winter wardrobe out of the dumps and into the very chic light? These trending styles will transform your morning routine from an angsty eye-roll to pure excitement.

Too hot? Unzip that sweater from J. Crew!
Side-Zip Sweaters

I have seen these everywhere recently and I really support this trend. Not only is it a great way to revamp the classic winter sweater, it gives a little NYC edge to those brisk nights. Also, sweaters with zippers are a one-piece outfit maker (the embellishments add so much that all you have to do is pull it onno jewelry or thought needed)! But I think my absolute favorite feature of this trend is that if you're wearing a super cute top underneath, or you are overheating because Milbank has suddenly turned into a sauna, all you have to do is unzip your sweater to get a little cross-ventilation going. Fashionable yet very, very functional.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Why John Oliver is the Broadcast Journalist of Your Dreams

by Laura K. Garrison

John Oliver shines on his own show.
You probably first remember seeing John Oliver as the Harry Potter-lookalike correspondent on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Between his adorable British accent, adorable British mannerisms, and adorable dimply smile, Oliver was a favorite on the popular fake news show. When Jon Stewart briefly left The Daily Show in 2013 to direct Rosewater, his first film to be released on November 7, Oliver stepped in to helm the show for eight weeks. And while reviews of Oliver’s hosting of The Daily Show were mixed, he’s certainly hit his stride as the star of HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.

After watching its premiere in April, Last Week Tonight became a necessary staple of my weekly television-watching. Smart, funny, and appropriately profanity-laden, Oliver strikes a balance between borrowing from his experiences at The Daily Show and pushing fake news to its hysterical - and poignant - best. Like its Comedy Central predecessors The Daily Show and The Colbert Report, Last Week Tonight is a half hour-long show broken down into segments like a typical network news program. Oliver focuses heavily on international affairs, ridicules the abysmal state of broadcast journalism, and covers lesser known issues that aren’t receiving the media attention they deserve.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Ultimate Halloween Movie List

by Clarke Wheeler

October is an exciting month for many reasons, among them being the beginning of sweater weather, the changing colors of leaves, and the delicious hot drinks that suddenly appear. But without a doubt, the main reason October is so exciting is Halloween, arguably one of the most important days of the year. Preparation for Halloween shouldn’t be limited to brainstorming costume ideas; watching Halloween movies is an essential part of the October experience. Here is a categorized list of some of the best movies to get you in the spirit (Those that are on Netflix are labeled). Enjoy!

High School

The Craft (R) (1996) 

This 90’s movie is a horrifying twist on the classic “new girl at school” story. The new girl joins a trio of high school witches, and things quickly get out of hand. Watch for Fairuza Balk’s amazingly disturbing performance.

Donnie Darko (R) (2001)
 – Netflix 

This isn’t Easter, but there’s a bunny rabbit involved. In fact, Donnie is manipulated by a large bunny rabbit, Frank, to commit a number of crimes. A series of violent events happen over the course of October, and culminate around Halloween. This supernatural thriller received mixed reviews upon its release, but has since garnered a cult following. Check out this film starring Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, and Drew Barrymore.

Scream (R) (1996) – Netflix

Have you ever wondered if your life was actually movie? In this film, characters find themselves living in a horror movie as a murderer terrorizes their small town. The first in the Scream trilogy, this movie received several awards and nominations, as well as a largely positive critical and box office response. Make sure to check out a young Drew Barrymore in this classic.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Practicing a Little Self-Love

by Gaby Marraro

Getting off campus and reading a nice book
in a coffee shop could be just what you need
With midterm season upon us, it is easy to let the stress of academic, extracurricular, and personal commitments overwhelm us. It is so important to set aside time to practice some simple self-care rituals to ease the stress. Here are a few things I like to do when everything seems too much to handle.

1. Take a nice, long shower, and enjoy every second of it. Promise yourself to clear your mind for those 20 minutes. Commit yourself to feeling the beautiful warmth of the water and the refreshment that comes from feeling clean and new.

2. Eat a meal alone, and be proud of it. There is no shame in eating alone in a dining hall. Take one day to grab dinner by yourself. Go at your own pace, go for that dessert you might not have let yourself have had you been surrounded by people, and enjoy the time you’ve allowed yourself to reset and relax.

3. Start a journal. People have always told me how healing journaling can be, but I never listened until a few months ago. Since I started writing on a regular basis, I’ve felt such a release. There are things that are hard to say out loud, even to a best friend, and a journal is a place where you can be totally unrestricted without judgment.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A Review of Broadway’s “Lady Day”

By Clarke Wheeler

Audra McDonald is now the only actor or actress
to win all four acting categories at the Tony Awards. 
The moment Tony Award-winning actress and singer Audra McDonald walks onstage as Billie Holiday, AKA “Lady Day”, you feel as though you have been transported to a different time and place—specifically, to a small bar in South Philadelphia in 1959. For an hour and a half, you are transfixed with McDonald’s impossibly accurate vocal imitation of Holiday, the wonderful musical accompaniment, and the story of Holiday’s tumultuous and celebrated life. “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill”, which ran from April 13th to October 5th, earned Audra McDonald her sixth Tony Award; she now has more Tony Awards than any other actor or actress. After seeing the performance for myself, I am not surprised by this accomplishment.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Saturday Night Live Turns 40

by Tori Fourman

How excited are you for the 40th season of SNL?
I’ve been a fan of SNL forever, so I was more than excited when the show kicked off its 40th season on Saturday, September 27 with Andy from Parks and Rec, Chris Pratt, the star(lord) of Guardians of the Galaxy, and musical guest Ariana Grande. The show underwent some significant changes this summer, and while the premiere wasnt totally spectacular, I think it showed promise for this upcoming season.

First off, we noticed a change in announcer. Don Pardo, announcer for all but one season of SNL since 1975, passed away in August. He was replaced by former cast member Darrell Hammond. Hammond did alright as announcer, though I found the change initially unsettling.

Monday, October 13, 2014

It’s Taco Time!

by Aisha Hasan

Coming from the south, specifically Houston, Texas, I was raised with any type of Tex-Mex available to me in all ranges.

Almost as good as tacos from Texas. 
When moving, a small concern of mine was losing access to food that I considered essential to me whenever undergoing stressful moments. Remembering that my new home was NYC, a cultural melting pot, I decided to scope out the best foods that I could. When my friend suggested going to Cascabel Taqueria on 108th and Broadway, I decided to give it a try.

After a short walk, I was welcomed by a waiter at the door who seated us immediately and brought us some water before giving us a few minutes to take our order.

Friday, October 10, 2014

What is Yik Yak?

by Gaby Marraro

If you haven’t already heard, there’s a new app popular among college students called Yik Yak, a sort of anonymous Twitter with other people in your area.

Once you open the app and activate location settings, you are able to see the posts of anyone else within a few miles of you. You can up-vote, down-vote, and reply to each Yak in your feed. Anything you post is completely anonymous.

It’s particularly fun to use when you’re on campus. There is always a flood of posts around lunchtime when the package center line is ridiculously long and at night when Butler is full of all the students who’ve put off doing their work until the very last minute. Some even use it as a replacement for Columbia Admirers, an anonymous way to profess your love for someone you passed by in a dining hall or on College Walk. The more you post, comment, and vote on Yaks, the higher your “Yakarma” is.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Upcoming Concerts in New York City

by Erin Low
Do you want to see Alt-J perform this semester?
There really is no excuse for feeling bored in New York City. Along with the Broadway musicals, museum trips, film screenings, poetry readings, and everything else you mentally promised yourself you’d hit up, here’s another ball game for you to consider: concerts. Still dawdling? These are the artists you’ve already missed: Lily Allen, The Black Keys, Jay-Z, Broken Bells, Enrique Iglesias, Wu-Tang Clan, Iggy Azalea…

No worries though, the lineup of musicians performing in NYC this fall is promising, and ripe for your picking. Here’s a list of noteworthy concerts coming up, and all of the relevant details too. If you spot your favorite artist in here, be sure to check out the venue’s website, to see if similar artists would be playing there. Don’t forget to snag a ticket ASAP though!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Bring Back our Burgers and Jamba Juice!

By Laura K. Garrison

To where can Barnard students now turn for Jamba Juice?
Barnard, a grave injustice has been committed against us. Several weeks ago, Barnard students were alerted to the fact that they are no longer welcome to eat at JJ’s Place, Columbia’s beloved burger joint that serves up the best comfort food on campus, including chicken wings, omelets, fro-yo, and unlimited Jamba Juice. While an online petition has been created to garner support for a change in policy, there’s something not quite right about this situation.

The first time I ate at JJ’s was halfway through my sophomore year in late 2012, when I was told that Barnard students could use meal swipes at JJ’s but were not allowed to swipe into the mysterious basement dining hall after 8pm. Because Hewitt Dining Hall provides a Late Night option from 8:30pm to 11pm, JJ’s was not open to Barnard students after 8pm, though students who had already swiped in were allowed to stay. This rule, to my knowledge, has effectively been in place for the past two years, and not once did I have an issue swiping in for a meal at JJ’s.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Women’s Wear in the Gaming World

by Jessica Gregory

The armor doesn't even protect her from the wind she's making
I willingly admit that some of the free time I have between work, clubs, and class is spent playing video games. I love them. I have lots of them. They are great. What’s even better is that many video games in this day and age have strong female characters. We’re still working on bringing women to the forefront as the main character instead of what I like to call the ‘powerful sidekick’, but we’re making steps in the right direction.

However, it’s kind of difficult to appreciate our feminine heroes if they are clad in little more than a gold plated bikini. Take Janna from League of Legends. League of Legends, developed by Riot, is rife with powerful women with not so powerful clothing choices, and Janna is no different. This formidable wind-sorceress would probably be my character of choice, if she were clad more like her male counterpart who actually gets to wear an outfit as opposed to, say, a loincloth that frames his nether regions perfectly. He looks like the warrior he is, while she looks like eye candy. Though there are multiple ladies in League who do seem to have clothing as badass as their persona, the game often provides extra “skins” for the character that strip them right back down to basics. I should also add that the first black character added to League of Legends comes with a skin that makes him white.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Pizza Vinoteca

by Mariah Castillo

Last Friday my friend and I, wanting to catch up after three months of separation and not wanting to do homework, decided to eat dinner together. We went to Pizza Vinoteca at Union Square, as I wanted to get out of the MoHi area and she wanted pizza. To put things concisely, I was so glad to have gone.
Pizza is always good, but this pizza was AMAZING.

Upon entering, I was surprised by how inviting the restaurant was. The lighting was warm, more on the dark side, and the two floors (which were fairly small spaces) were filled with patrons of all ages. Everyone seemed to be having a good time.

Pizza Vinoteca stands out among other great pizza places through its setup. While the traditional waiter is part of the experience, you order everything through an iPad. The whole concept might seem a little pretentious, but it actually wasn’t; the staff was very nice and ready to help us when we had some trouble with ordering. The “app” first asked us to type in a name or alias, and because my friend’s nickname was “Ruby,” she and I decided to type in “Emerald” and “Sapphire,” respectively. We then chose from the starters/ sides, pizzas, drinks, and desserts, which were all divine.
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