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Tag Archives: Kafein

Sherman Ave Freshman Guide: Date Night

11 Sep

datenight1This is for those of you who will be brave enough to hurdle the biggest barrier to getting a date at Northwestern: actually just fucking asking someone out already. The journey from being the person who judges the couple holding hands while waiting in line for sushi to being the person who has a boyfriend or girlfriend to help you make fun of the couple holding hands while waiting in line for sushi can be long, strenuous, and very occasionally sexually satisfactory. The following guide will help immerse yourself in Northwestern’s insulated stultifying vibrant dating scene. Or at least help snag you a warm body to fasten yourself to during winter quarter.

The First Date

Kafein: Good place for hipsters to grab a caramel turtle mocha and split a warmed up cookie. If conversation lulls, you can always heckle the townies doing stand up on Monday nights.

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The Absolute Worst Places Ever

20 May

Everyone knows that feeling. When you’ve ended up somewhere that you have no desire to be. It could be that you’re sober at a formal and your date has the conversational skills of R2D2. Perhaps  you’re babysitting a bratty ass kid who won’t shut the fuck up and the parents have put a lock on the liquor cabinet. Or maybe you’re in the back of a cop car after getting busted for child pornography marijuana. No matter the situation, we’ve all been there. Don’t worry about it; it happens to the best of us. To aid you in your avoidance of all places horrific, I’ve compiled a list of the most monstrous atrocities geography has blasphemed Northwestern with.

Tech library is really just the North Dakota of Northwestern.

Tech Library
It’s either cold as shit or hot as a fucking frat party. The crowd it attracts is questionable (read: engineers and frat boizz) and the food options are pathetic (I LOVE IT WHEN TECH EXPRESS IS CLOSED AND THE VENDING MACHINE WONT TAKE MY $5). There are no outlets on the third and first floors (no you’re absolutely right tech library, no one uses laptops in this day and age!). There aren’t enough study rooms, and the few that do exist are always occupied by selfish fuckers who take up entire rooms for themselves. Dicks.

Sheridan Road
The sidewalk is so crowded that it’s impossible to achieve the optimal stride length needed to book it from Tech to Kresge. But don’t even think about biking, because you WILL clip someone’s heels and you WILL be an ass wipe. So you must shuffle along with your face scrunched up, engaged in a fruitless battle against the vicious wind. It’s practically guaranteed that you will encounter someone you know, but chances are it will be the absolute last person you want to see. It will be that creepy fucker who keeps texting you, or that guy with the salivary glad condition whom you drunkenly had the misfortune of tongue wrestling with. For the love of God don’t make eye contact.

Excuse me, I’m blogging here.

Kafein
Before you spit your drink out on your keyboard in shock, hear me out. It’s not that I don’t like coffee. I fucking love coffee more than anything that ever existed. I like my coffee black, bold, and strong (LOLOL innuendo). I prefer to brew it myself, using a French press and dark roasted beans. Which is precisely why I don’t appreciate this “Tuxedo Mocha” or “Tree Hugger” or “Funky Monkey” bullshit that Kafein has to offer. Like really, wut? I don’t understand what these drink titles mean. But since every single person ever just absolutely fucking adores Kafein, I gave it one more shot. One recent afternoon I donned my black-rimmed Ray-Bans and my best flannel shirt in preparation for an afternoon in caffeinated hipsterland. The trouble started early. I walked up to the counter and stood there like a blithering idiot trying to find a menu. JOKESONJOKES THERE IS NO VISIBLE MENU ANYWHERE. I ended up blindly ordering an espresso macchiato. It was over-priced and under-delicious. Oh gee, I’ve just turned my nose up at a place that is popular among my peers. Does that make me hipstah?

The Bobb laundry room
I just…I can’t even. It smells like a decomposed scrotum. Approximately 87% of the machines don’t work, but will take your quarters anyway. The lighting is reminiscent of a mental hospital. The air is so… moist. I would literally rather drink nothing but pickle juice for a month than spend a single unnecessary moment in this desolate suckland.

The only bar in America that looks more desolate in the daytime than the Keg.

The Deuce
Or, as I like to affectionately refer to it as, The Mark II Lounge. The Deuce manages to combine all of my least favorite things: cab rides, fire-hazard-level crowdedness, and pricey alcohol. It literally takes all of the worst aspects of an on-campus party and makes them far away, inconvenient, and expensive. Also, the free pizza is a recipe for disaster. On one of my recent Doucey excursions I dove into that pizza like a freshman diving into a party during Welcome Week. Regrettably, I was too shwasty to remember to check if the pizza was cheese or pepperoni. One gigantic, pepperoni-filled bite later and my vegetarian self was expelling that pizza all over the Deuce floor. This behavior was heavily frowned upon. I was asked to leave. In a cab. Fuck. I hate the deuce.

So there you have it, you silly little fuckers. These places should be avoided at all costs. Take Sherman Ave instead of Sheridan Rd. Study in Deering instead of Tech. Go for months without doing your laundry. Stop pretending you’re hipster and get your stupid Latte from Norbucks. Above all, do not end up at the Deuce. If you do have the misfortune of ending up in one of these heinous places, sucks to suck. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

How to survive a walk down Sheridan Road

1 Feb

Always stay vigilant of your surroundings

Let’s face it: you didn’t come to Northwestern because you’re good at socializing. You probably came here because you got a 33 on your ACT, placed in the semifinals of Scholastic Bowl, and get offended when Harry Potter placement quizzes dare to put you in Gryffindor (RAVENCLAW 4 LYFE BRAH).

Yet I’m sure your social skillz have blossomed beautifully over the last few months or years. Just the other day I saw a friend on a shuttle and managed to sit next to him and hold polite conversation for 30 whole seconds without saying the word “scrotum!” So that was successful.

But, since not all social interactions can go that smoothly, I’ve decided to try and bestow some advice on the most socially difficult situation an NU student can run into: seeing someone you know on Sheridan Road.

Here’s what to do in a variety of situations:

Someone you’ve never met, but you know who they are:
DO NOT MAKE EYE CONTACT. Look down or up or at your phone or to the side or pretty much anywhere but into their corneas. If you’re particularly socially able, engage in conversation with the person you’re walking with. This will make it less obvious that you are feverishly watching the other person in your peripheral vision.

Someone you’ve met once or twice:
Depending on how the last interaction went, it may be acceptable to wave or say a quick “hi.” This is certainly not required, and the other person should not be offended if you do not do so. But if the last encounter you had was pleasant and social you should feel free to greet them briefly as you pass. However, this is NOT a situation where you stop and say, “How ARE you? Ugh, I feel like we haven’t talked in forever! Let’s get Kafein soon!”

Socializing in a simpler time

Someone you know casually, as in from a party or through a mutual friend:
Say hello and wave. This is an opportunity to make a friend! If they seem particularly excited, you can throw in a “How are ya?” or “How’ve you been?” After several of these encounters and if the blooming friendship seems consensual, you can stop to talk or add a little more to the conversation.

Someone who you drunkenly met and hung out with at a party:
Oh God this can be awkward. First, how sure are you that they even remember you? If they were potentially blacked out, do not make eye contact unless they prompt it. If you’re sure they remember you and you didn’t do anything awkward, wave casually and maybe smile. If, however, it was one of those terrific drunken nights where you bond on the roof of Swift, feel free to be more enthusiastic. If you’re both still just glad to be alive, perhaps share a knowing laugh. If you ended the night by promising to become bestiez and exchanging numbers, you should probably hug. You are bestiez now, after all.

Someone you’ve hung out with several times:
Say hi. Try to be normal. Hopefully you have something to talk about for a moment. If not try “How ARE you? Ugh, I feel like we haven’t talked in forever! Let’s get Kafein soon!”

A friend of yours:
I usually go with “WAZZUP BROSEF STALIN, HOW YOU BE HANGING MAYN?!”. You may choose to be less heinous if you wish, but if that’s your goal I don’t really understand why you’re reading this.

One of your best friends:
Pretend to ignore them. This is hilarious every time and never gets old.

That kid who lived in your hall last year but you never talked to:
Stare at the sidewalk. The sidewalk is so fucking interesting. Oh, is that a flyer for the SASA Show? Why yes it is. That must be the most fucking fascinating flyer you’ve ever seen. Absorb it into your brainmind.

A professor you once had:
Wink. Please. Just do it and then tell me how it went and whether or not they immediately made violent love to you.

Don't worry, it wasn't very good for her either.

A girl you hooked up with last year:
Are you past the awkward stage? If so, act like it’s a friend. If not, act like it’s a kid who lived in your hall last year but you never talked to.

A girl you knocked up last year:
PAY HER CHILD SUPPORT. STOP RUNNING AWAY. THIS IS YOUR CHILD TOO AND IT NEEDS A FATHER. MAN UP YOU LITTLE BITCH.

A kid in your discussion section:
If you sit near each other and talk often, wave and/or say hi. If you don’t really talk but think they could be your soulmate, slowly drift over toward them. As you approach you’ll have two options: either grab them forcefully and run off, physically taking them with you, or bump into them and say “Sorry! Oh, you’re in my Human Sex lecture aren’t you? I’m sure we’d make great Human Sex.” Both of these should work.

Now, it’s important to remember that all of this is dependent on timing. No matter who the other person is, if you start looking at them too early or too late the encounter will be awkward and Northwesternish. Try to make eye contact no more than six steps in advance and no fewer than four. This way even an awkward encounter will be over quickly, but if you decide you’re enjoying it you can stop and make it last longer. Wait. Guys. That sounded sexual. Please don’t have intercourse on Sheridan.

2011 Sherman Ave Reader’s Poll: Results

19 Jan

With 122 responses and a wide variety of exceedingly gruesome responses,* we were absolutely thrilled with the success of this year’s poll. So, after much anticipation (drumroll please), we present to you: RESULTS!

The hanging chad of our generation

Most Heinous Event of 2011
With 24% of the vote, the winner was: Rebecca Black’s “Friday” Strikes Youtube. This is undoubtedly the most atrocious non-majority victory we’ve seen since November 2000.

Best Place to Find and Enjoy a Hookup
Also with 24% of the vote, the winner was: A Frat House. Notable write-ins include “Baby Bash ski trip concert” and “Deer season in Indiana.” Surprisingly enough, nobody mentioned Sherman Ave HQ…

Favorite Sherman Ave personality?
With 30% of the vote, the winner was: Sir Edward Twattingworth III. We at the Ave have not a shred of doubt that this will result in a power-trip of unprecedented magnitude, but with Sir T-Worth, we’re used to it. Anything less than Putin-esque levels of self-aggrandizement would be a disappointment.

Best Song of 2011
With 15% of the vote, the winner was: “Someone Like You” by Adele. This can easily be understood by anyone who has ever been within a 5-mile radius of any intoxicated Sherman Ave writer. Or felt love.

Most Mouthgasms per Bite
With 33% of the vote, the winner was: Hot Cookie Bar. Notable write-ins include “your mom” and “Pippa Middleton.”

DAMN YOU HIPSTERS FOR RUINING THE BEANIE FOR ME!!!!

Best Coffee Shop
With 52% of the vote, the winner was: Kafein. This would probably not go over well with one of the respondents who wrote in the answer, “Hipsters are sub-humans.” Ross Packingham intends to use this landslide victory as a clear mandate to bring his Buddhism-influenced beat poetry to Kafein’s stage, supported by Brother Jürgen and Eleanor Kinkervoss on the bongos while Evander Jones attacks the chastity belt around his waist with a chain saw. Sadly, it will only the fourth-most heinous act on stage at that week’s open mic.

Best Place to Get Intoxicated in Public
With 27% of the vote, the winner was: Cozy Noodles. Among the many notable write-ins were: “Barnes and Noble,” “10am MENU class,” and “sidewalk.”

Best A Cappella Group
With 26% of the vote, the winner was: There is no such thing as a good a cappella group. A ruefully valid statement indeed.

Best Movie of 2011
With 29% of the vote, the winner was: Harry Potter 7.2. Notable write-ins include Twilight: Breaking Hymen and Pippa Middleton, both of which feature Morty Schapiro and Kate Upton in starring roles.

Best TV Show of 2011
With 17% of the vote, the winner was: How I Met Your Mother. Apparently people identify with drunken assholes frittering away the golden years of their lives chasing after unsatisfactory one-night stands. Far and away, the most heinous write-in was: “Is The Hills still on? I pick The Hills.”

Please Describe Morty Schapiro in 10 Words or Less
This one was actually too much for us to emotionally process. Top answer: “Why limit it to fewer words than his penis length?” Maybe once Ross Packingham’s poetry career takes off, maybe he’ll compose a sonnet using only these responses and youtube video comments.

What’s Up the Evanston City Council’s Ass?
With 35% of the vote, the winner was: a 14-inch dildo made of molten gummy bears. If that’s not already true, it can certainly be arranged.

Ever wonder how I got the name "Packingham?"

What is your Gender?
With 58% of the vote, the winner was: Female. AWWWWWW YEAHHHHHH!!!! Hey ladies, how’d you like to spend the night with the fourth-most popular Northwestern-centric blog? No?** Haaaaaaave you met Manua?

What Brings You to Sherman Ave?
With a staggering 70% of the vote, the winner was: Facebook. Needless to say, notable write-ins included “Pippa Middleton” and “all of your fucking Facebook posts.”

In conclusion, a huge thank you goes out to everyone who took this poll. We couldn’t do it without you. We hope that you were pleased with our unnecessary heinousness in 2011, and we will do everything in our power to take it to the next level in 2012. Most importantly, we’re comforted to see in the responses that the people who read Sherman Ave are just about as fucked up as the people who write for it.

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*Allowing for a standard error of approximately 69%.
**Fun Fact: The first time Sherman Ave was ever used as a potential pickup line occurred in line for the bathroom at an off-campus party. It was not successful.

Sherman Ave Freshman Guide: Evanston

30 Aug

After immersing yourself for a few weeks in the infamous college lifestyle, you’ll be surprised to discover that – just a few blocks from that wall of Jones on which you triumphantly urinated – there is a real city with real people. As easy as it is to be insulated in Northwestern’s spectacular campus, the city of Evanston is a great resource. The following comprehensive guide to key businesses in Evanston will assist you in your efforts to take advantage of the city (omitting Burger King and The Keg, since we’ve already explained their glorious nature).

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Watch: Fan Video of Eric Johnson Folk Jam

11 Mar

Eric "The Triumphant Troubadour" Johnson

Local singer-songwriter Eric Johnson (also a member of the acclaimed Pick Six Jazz Sextet) has slowly been cultivating a devoted following over the past couple of months, especially thanks to numerous performances at the hipster enclave Kafein. Drawing on influences like Andrew Bird, The Tallest Man on Earth, and M. Ward, Johnson’s songs make ample use of flowing chord progressions, soaring melodies, and his technical mastery with a loop machine to bring beauty and texture to his music, which then become irrevocably intertwined with his poignant lyrics. Needless to say, he’s pretty damn good on his own.

But recent evidence leaked to Sherman Ave suggests that Johnson has began work on a project of even grander proportions.

A fan video, taken last night in the Willard Rat Trap by Friend of the Ave Katie Chilton, captured an open rehearsal with Eric Johnson on guitar and vocals, Charlotte Malin on violin, and a mysterious mandolin player. The leak has led to intense speculation about what the future holds in store for Johnson and his music, including rumors that he is planning on fronting what could perhaps become one of the greatest folk bands of the modern era. But whatever the future holds in store, be sure to check out last night’s fragmented performance of the Johnson original “Garrison Slaves,” and try not to shout out in delight at its bucolic beauty.