Brunch, Not Breakfast: Law Weekly Investigates the Charlottesville Brunch Scene


Grace Tang ‘21
Lifestyle Editor

Christina Luk ‘21
Executive Editor

Sedona Taphouse at 1035 Millmont St.

Brunch Time: Sundays 10:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.

 

Grace: Although I was initially attracted to Sedona for their steak specials on Mondays, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that they had quite the extensive brunch menu as well. Sedona is a great spot as they’re right by the law school, so that lazy, flaky brunch-friend has no excuse to bail. Generally there’s not much of a wait time, and Sedona has an excellent selection of breakfast beverages (and beverages in general). They also have a very extensive menu, so it’s a good choice for accommodating all palate. I got a mimosa and the classic eggs benny. Sedona is the perfect place for a low-key, weekend brunch with friends. #TreatYoself. 4.0/5

 

Christina: I’ll be real, I’m suspicious of any place that only offers brunch once a week. How can I entrust myself and my highly cultured brunch needs to a restaurant that doesn’t prioritize breakfast foods served at lunch? Still, I am a reporter of great integrity and hunger, and I do not allow my own correctly formed prejudices to keep me from a meal. If you cannot imagine a brunch without eggs, you are in good company at Sedona––their brunch menu features two omelets, three eggs benedicts, and an egg hash. The remaining item is their nutella french toast, which I heard is #eggscellent. The mimosas were decent. 3.5/5

 

Oakhurst Inn Cafe & Espresso Bar at 1616 Jefferson Park Ave

Brunch Time: Weekends 8:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m.

 

Grace: Brunch at Oakhurst Inn was trendy, modern and felt just over the top enough to make things fun. The exterior of the building is in a charming white house with wood trim, which makes the atmosphere relaxing and a little whimsical. The menu was very quirky and interesting, featuring seasonal items such as pumpkin waffles, coconut rice grits, and the classic millennial avocado toast. I ordered the eggs meurette, their most popular item, which is like a fancy take on eggs benedict but with much more extra. You know things are good when they come with “shiitake burgundy wine sauce” on top. Most ingredients are locally sourced as well, so you can feel good while you chow down a delicious brunch. 4.50/5

 

Christina: If you’re looking for brunch with a twist, Oakhurst is the place for you. It’s farther out from the Law School than Sedona, but that adds to its charm. It has less parking space, but remember, victory whets the appetite. My good friend Joy calls Oakhurst “the cutest little bed and breakfast,” but I have never strung those words together in my life, so I’ll leave that as it is. The menu is seasonal––because life is unpredictable and cruel––and sometimes your favorite item is missing from the menu. Do not let that discourage you. Brunch requires both courage and mental fortitude. I recommend the eggs meurette for as long as they are on the menu. With abundant natural lighting, great coffee, and amazing service, brunch at Oakhurst will leave you feeling satisfied and energized to start your last-minute Sunday readings. 4.5/5

 

MarieBette Cafe and Bakery at 700 Rose Hill Dr.

Brunch Time: Weekends 8:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.

 

MarieBette’s Croque Madame. Photo Credit: Jenny Kwun.

MarieBette’s Croque Madame. Photo Credit: Jenny Kwun.

Grace: MarieBette Cafe and Bakery is a gem in Charlottesville. They’re perhaps most well known for their delicious pastries, which are temptingly displayed behind long glass counters as soon as you step through the front door. I spotted cookies the size of my face, various flaky pastries, and a decadent looking German chocolate cake, along with quiches and breads. Their shop is divided into two sections; the front sells pastries and other baked goods while the back seats hungry guests for their extensive brunch menu. Everything smells heavenly. Pro-tip: come early, or there will be a line on the weekend. Our party waited forty-five minutes for a seat, but it was worth the wait. I was recommended the banana cream stuffed nutella french toast, which was insanely tasty. I liked that the filling balanced out the sweetness of the nutella. Their croque monsieur is a great choice if you’re feeling something savory. Brownie points for the store’s great selection of espresso drinks and fresh pressed juices. Rating: 4.44/5

 

Christina Luk ‘21, Grace Tang ‘21, Kolleen Gladden ‘21 brunch at MarieBette’s. Photo Credit: Jenny Kwun.

Christina Luk ‘21, Grace Tang ‘21, Kolleen Gladden ‘21 brunch at MarieBette’s. Photo Credit: Jenny Kwun.

Christina: Nothing pumps me up for brunch like a forty-five-minute wait. Life and eggs are both sweeter when I’m at the ravenous edge of hunger. I highly recommend MarieBette’s “The Morning Jørgensen,” which is possibly the bougiest open-face smoked salmon sandwich in C’ville. When I went in February, MarieBette was serving a different featured flavor of hot chocolate each week, which is an event they should continue forever. The baked goods are the real highlight of the café! If you indulge as I do in the fantasy of ever writing a Great American Novel, nothing intimates productivity like a cup of coffee and chocolate almond croissant. Pick up a financier while you’re at it, because no one is ever gonna pay you for that book. Life is pain!  4.0/5

___

gt5ay@virginia.edu
cl3eh@virginia.edu

Social Media at UVA Law: What's Hot and What's Not?


Lena Welch ‘20
New Media Editor

Since #ANG has rediscovered ANG’s Twitter account, it’s time to review the social media presences of UVA Law student organizations. I’m going to focus on Twitter and Instagram. Y’all get the Facebook event invitations, you know which organizations are on Facebook. In the meantime, one retweet = one respect.

I’m also limiting the review to student organizations and programs; otherwise, the library (@UVALawLibrary) would win. Y’all know their Arthur content is *heart eyes emoji.* The @UVALaw account would also be a winner because, as some of y’all know, they are responsible for my *fire emoji* phone background of Dean Risa Goluboff and Pharrell Williams. It’s truly the greatest photo in the world.

Nevertheless, some of the student organizations are churning out good #content, highlighting the goings-on around North Grounds and beyond.

Virginia Law Women | Twitter: @UVALawWomen

Virginia Law Women joined twitter in the spring and has been giving us gifs and girl power ever since. @UVALawWomen’s retweet game is strong, inspiring us all with successful lady lawyers. Follow if you like staying up to date with the women at UVA Law as well as the stellar alumnae. 

Ranking: 8 RTs

Public Interest Law Association | Instagram: @PILAatUVA

While PILA hasn’t tweeted since 2014, it does have a new Instagram account. With only eight posts, @PILAatUVA has room for improvement, but I have a feeling some spring events will provide good content. Don’t forget to donate, y’all. Your public service classmates can use it!

Ranking: 6 likes

Black Law Students Association | Twitter: @UVABLSA | Instagram: @BLSAatUVA

@UVABLSA highlights the organization’s involvement in the greater Charlottesville community, which is definitely something to be commended. BLSA’s accounts also feature some excellent graphics. Plus, last year’s “Nice for What” video was *100 emoji*.

Ranking: 10 RTs

Latin American Law Organization | Twitter: @UVA_LALO | Instagram: @LALOatUVALaw

LALO’s Twitter account primarily tweets out its Instagram photos, which automatically improves their #hashtag game. Also, it has posted about the Shaping Justice Conference and the Virginia Law Weekly, and that goes a long way with this reporter.

Ranking: 9 RTs

William Minor Lile Moot Court Competition | Twitter: @LileMootCourt

@LileMootCourt features some excellent photos. Its tone is particularly positive and encouraging. Even if you’re not writing a brief, you may want to give them a follow for the good luck GIFs. It’s also a good introduction to #AppellateTwitter, so prepare for the quote tweets.

Ranking: 8 RTs

American Constitution Society | Twitter: @ACSatUVA

@ACSatUVA has a self-deprecating tone to its tweets. I expect its following will increase with its student convention coming up. In the meantime, give them a follow for interesting information with a bit of silliness. Plus, they tweeted about the Shaping Justice Conference, so…

Ranking: 7 RTs

Federalist Society | Twitter: @FedSocAtUVALaw | Instagram: @FedSocAtUVALaw

Fed Soc’s Twitter and Instagram accounts are focused on its events, perfect if you want to be in the know for everything it’s sponsoring. Good graphics and timely information make these a couple of well-run social media accounts.

Ranking: 8 RTs

Program in Law and Public Service | Instagram: @LPSatUVALaw

The Program in Law and Public Service is new to Instagram, but it is definitely worth a follow. The idea behind it is simple: public service students do cool things. Plus, the boomerang of Robbie Pomeroy ’19 and Spencer Ryan ’19 is one of the best posts on the internet.

Ranking: 10 Likes

Charlottesville's Best Donuts, As Ranked by Children and Their Sprinkles


John Melcon ‘19
Dad & Donut Connoisseur

Charlottesville is well-known for its winery scene, craft brewery scene, and Vineyard Vines scene. Not to be ignored, though, is greater-Albemarle County’s ever-improving donut scene. Special Agent Dale Cooper could get along fine here.

The author with his enthusiastic co-critics. Photo John Melcon /  Virginia Law Weekly

The author with his enthusiastic co-critics. Photo John Melcon / Virginia Law Weekly

Since what follows is an attempt at ranking C’ville’s finest donut emporia, let me say a word about methodology. Over the past two years, my four kids and I have spent most Saturday mornings on a Daddy-Day errand or adventure. Those trips invariably begin with donuts, giving our squad ample opportunity to evaluate all the local offerings. Still, ranking donuts is about as subjective as ranking law schools by “best professors,” and just to make things even more arbitrary, I’ve delegated the entire task to my children. The sprinkle scores below represent the results of a sophisticated voting process, which transpired last Thursday at the kitchen table.

 

Duck Donuts

Overall Score: 19 Sprinkles

Duck Donuts began in 2006 when Russ DiGilio and Robin Griffith decided to remedy the lack of donuts in their favorite Outer Banks beach town: Duck, N.C. The company’s unique business model proved to be a hit, and entrepreneurial tourists prevailed upon the founders to let them open franchises as far away as Huntington Beach, Cal.

Charlottesville’s Duck Donuts opened in 2015 at The Shops at Stonefield and has been serving scrumptious Maple Bacon, Vanilla Oreo, and Peanut Butter Raspberry donuts to Pottery Barn and Lululemon patrons ever since. Don’t expect any display cases here—every order is custom made before your very eyes. My eight-year-old calculates that there are over 800 possible frosting, topping, and drizzle combinations, not including holiday specials. Visit on a weekend morning and you’ll find the place packed with Charlottesville’s middle-class families, all probably wishing they were on the Outer Banks but settling instead for soccer practice or swim team.

 

Carter Mountain Orchard

Score: 16 Sprinkles

              Shortly after sunrise on June 4, 1781, Thomas Jefferson crested the top of Carter’s Mountain, spyglass in hand. Having been warned that British soldiers were closing in on Monticello, Jefferson wanted to see for himself. Moments later, Jefferson spotted the redcoats, dashed back to Monticello, and escaped off the mountain a mere five minutes before his would-be captors arrived.

It’s a good thing the Chiles family wasn’t around serving hot apple cider donuts on Carter’s Mountain back in 1781. Could anyone have faulted Jefferson for stopping to order a dozen of these delectable fall favorites, a delay that might have left him licking cinnamon sugar off his fingers in British custody? Lucky for us, we live in an era where “Carter’s Mountain” is synonymous with the unrivaled pleasure of savoring a fresh cider donut on a crisp autumn morning while enjoying the best views in town. In case you’re wondering, Carter Mountain Orchard and its donut bakery reopen in 45 days on March 30. But who’s counting?

 

Krispy Kreme

Score: 16 Sprinkles

Long-time locals know that Krispy Kreme opened its first Charlottesville location in the late 1990’s (in what is now the Raising Canes). The company shuttered the store a few years later amidst corporate losses blamed on the Atkins Diet. Fortunately, everyone on the Atkins Diet has since given up, and Krispy Kreme returned from its decade-long externship in 2017.

If you’re lucky, you’ll pull up to the gleaming, glassy Fifth Street Station location and find the legendary “Hot Light” illuminated. This neon sign, which has much the same effect as Pavlov’s metronome, indicates that the mesmerizing Rube Goldberg contraption inside is switched on, pumping out piles of fresh confections. I’m told Krispy Kreme sells many varieties of donuts, but if you ask for anything other than the melt-in-your-mouth Original Glazed, you’re doing it wrong.

It’s also worth noting that the Original Glazed has long played a leading role in Charlottesville’s most famous late-night dessert: the Grillswith. The fabled Grillswith, available at The White Spot and several other Corner establishments, consists of two buttered and grilled Krispy Kreme donuts topped with a mound of smooth vanilla ice cream.

Take that, Dr. Atkins.

 

Sugar Shack Donuts

Score: 13 Sprinkles

Richmond-based Sugar Shack sold its first donut in 2013. Six year later, the company boasts eleven locations across Virginia and D.C. The Charlottesville store opened in 2018, making it the new kid on the block. And what a block it is: Sugar Shack occupies a storefront on Main Street under the long morning shadow of Charlottesville's newest trust-fund-baby housing monstrosity: The Standard. 

Like the surrounding apartment buildings, Sugar Shack donuts seem to embody a bigger-is-better philosophy. And while you won’t get to customize your toppings, there’s something for everyone, including varieties like “Sea Salt Caramel,” “Mud Pot,” and “Chocolate Butterfinger.” If it’s protein you’re after, order one of their breakfast sandwiches made between two donuts, then come back at night for a “Luther Burger” with donuts in place of buns. Don’t forget to follow them on social media: Every day they announce a way to get yourself a free house donut.

 

Carpe Donut

Score: 11 Sprinkles

In the mediocre 1980’s classic Dead Poets Society, Robin Williams challenges a bunch of future Z Society members to make their lives extraordinary by pondering the Latin phrase “carpe diem,” i.e., “Seize the Day.” If you’ve reached the depressing conclusion that your own conformist tendencies are too strong to be overcome by Latin verse, at least you can still “Seize the Donut” at Charlottesville’s homegrown donut catering outfit.

A true family operation, Carpe Donut is best known for serving up small-batch cider donuts from its whimsical cart at weddings and other events. The donuts themselves are a bit overpriced, but what you get is a bona fide organic treat. Regular storefront hours are nonexistent, so your best shot at seizing one of their products is on Saturday mornings, when the owners open up their kitchen for a few hours (winter) or set up shop at the downtown farmer’s market (summer).

 

Dunkin Donuts

Score: 9 Sprinkles

You might think Boston is on a roll these days, what with their big wins in the World Series and the Super Bowl. But when it comes to Beantown’s famous donut chain, they’re lagging behind in freshness and quality. Still, I’ll admit that as a Northeasterner myself there’s something predictably nostalgic about biting into a French Cruller or a Boston Kreme, or grabbing a fistful of Munchkins.

Despite being outclassed by the others on the list, Dunkin Donuts has a few redeeming qualities: extended hours, mobile ordering, a drive thru, and some pretty tasty iced coffee. Maybe that’s why Dunkin Donuts remains the fourth largest fast food chain in America, loading the stomachs of the human race with almost 3 billion donuts per year.

 

C'ville Coffee: The Law Weekly Review


Douglas Graebner ‘19
Staff Editor

Do you ever wish you had a nice place to sit down in Charlottesville? A break from the anguished sighs of those trying to wrap their heads around the Rule Against Perpetuities? A place to meet a friend who is not slightly depressing? Somewhere to get work done that is not full of fellow students? If so, visit one of the fine coffeeshops of Charlottesville listed below.

 

Grit (The Corner)

Grit is in a cozy, old building, a former house by my estimation, and serves excellent coffee, and is within walking distance of the Law School. I strongly suggest the upstairs for a comfy chair and the downstairs if you want to try and be productive. The garden had ginormous okra at some point. I don’t mean like “big,” I mean like “you could take this to the state fair, it’s the size of my left arm” big. Unfortunately, it is also walking distance from the Undergrad Hordes and perhaps a bit too cozy. Do you want to hear loud conversations about drama? Too late, you already do.

Verdict: For a treat, or when you want to study far enough away from the rest of grounds, but not ages away.

 

Greenberry

Pros: Okay coffee, reasonable proximity, lots of wood trim.

Cons: Short hours (what does it take to get an all-night coffeeshop in this town closer than Millie’s, dammit), awkward run-ins with professors exponentially more likely. Unfortunately crowded. Not as many food options in terms of food, and I cannot speak to their pastries but they are not the most exciting.

Verdict: Eh. If you like that it’s fine, you can be a bit closer. I personally have not had luck being productive here and it’s a bit crowded.

 

Milli Coffee

A bit far away. Apparently, they have a brie waffle I have yet to try. It is probably the latest-open place regularly, at least until some enterprising and very-lazy 3L starts an all-night diner in Barracks Row. Also good for overpriced coffee, but what coffee isn’t overpriced? Fortunately or unfortunately, it is overridden with “normal” people and that tribe of even more unfortunate souls than us 1Ls—grad students.

Verdict: For those who live further out and need to be night owls out of the house. Dammit I need to try that brie waffle.

 

Hot Cakes

A very nice little tea and coffee place in Barracks. They do good food and excellent pastries but it’s not perhaps the best atmosphere to get work done in. Very old lady-ish, so naturally well suited to me. But it is not great for working. I do strongly recommend their cakes

Verdict: For when you want to feel like a little old lady.  Good place to meet someone for late lunch. Not a good place to try to work.

 

Mudhouse (Crozet)

This place is big. Pastry selection appears to be good. Has good variety of coffee. Comfy. Unfortunately, it’s too far away and I am not sure what the marginal utility of going that far for, well, a coffeeshop. Even if you realllly want to be away from it all. Even a really good one. Maybe on a weekend.

Verdict: A good weekend or daylength trip, not so much for afternoon studying.

 

Quality Pie

This is a remarkable place, if less of a coffee shop than a bakery. It is honestly the most retro place I have been in a while, but with warm beignets. Warm beignets! What else can you ask for! And discount refills.

Verdict: For post-bar review hangover and an outing.

 

Atlas Coffee

A fine little diner-like coffeeshop. I distinctly recall a cinnamon roll half the size of my head,  excellent coffee refills, and more Christmas sweaters than a section party. Very haymish. Also a place where it is entirely possible to randomly start chatting with an astrophysics grad student(!). What a pity it is so distant!

Verdict: If you live out in Fry’s Spring for some reason I strongly recommend.

 

Snowing in Space

Very good coffee, cold brew on tap, excellent pastries, fairly cozy and near a very nice little deli place. Plus, next to the very excellent Korean place Dolma and the also-excellent generic high-end place Maya. Bit twee, and one is unlikely to run into another student here. Bit far to go for just a cup of coffee, but nice if you’re in the area.

Verdict: Good to visit if you don’t mind a bit of a 2000s hipster vibe.

Netflix's You: Finally a True Anti-Hero


Kimberly Hopkin ‘19
Development Editor

 

I appreciated Breaking Bad and Mad Men as much as the next gal, but I also never watched Ozarks because I got tired of watching men behaving badly and being forgiven under the guise of “sympathetic anti-hero.” I am also tired of watching romantic comedies where the male characters prove their love by being ultimately creepy. For instance, in The Choice, the male protagonist crosses state lines to follow his object of desire to her parent’s home to ask for her hand in marriage even though she literally screamed that she doesn’t want to marry him. I mean, I still cried at the end; I’m not a monster. But I am tired of having this narrative shoved down my throat every time I want to watch beautiful people fall in love with each other.

So, when I clicked on the new series, You, now streaming on Netflix after originally airing on Lifetime, I fully expected to really hate the show. After all, the series is openly about a stalker falling in love with a woman in New York City. I even put it on about thirty minutes before I wanted to go to bed anticipating being so bored that it would lull me to sleep. Four hours later, I had to force myself to turn off the show to catch at least a couple of hours of sleep.

I didn’t love the show because the male protagonist, Joe, was so redeemably sympathetic as an anti-hero (apparently hundreds of girls on Twitter felt that way). He wasn’t. Instead, I was just so invested in Beck, the female protagonist, discovering how twisted and disgusting Joe was. I love the show because Joe is decidedly not redeemable, loveable, or sympathetic. At one point, without giving too many spoilers, I literally screamed, “Oh, c’mon––he’s right there! Find him and call 911!” at my television. I’m sure my neighbors were charmed by my screams at 2 a.m.

When I fell in love with the show, it was because I started asking myself how Beck could be so blind. How could she ignore all of these red flags? Eventually, I had to admit to myself, it was because she didn’t want to see them. Now, before anyone cries “victim blaming,” I’m not saying it’s her fault (or even admitting that she’s a real person––did you forget she’s an imaginary character on a television show?) I’m saying that this show, like more highly praised shows, does what I think dark dramas should do: it holds a mirror up to our society and unflinchingly tells us to look.

Beck wanted a man to save her and worship her to the exclusion of all else. It could be because that’s what movies and television and Nicholas Sparks tell us love––true love––is like. That it is all consuming. It could be because she had “daddy issues.” Or because she wanted to feel as special as her rich friends. Regardless, Joe gave Beck all of his energy, and Beck interpreted that as positive instead of negative.

Now, if this story were a suspense movie, the director would probably take advantage of the Kuleshov Effect[1] and show Joe as a positive force in Beck’s life before revealing his true intentions. However, the genius of this show is that Joe was the narrator. We heard Joe’s thought processes as he hides outside her apartment masturbating or following her to a bar across town to “protect” her. We even heard Joe lambast his abusive next-door neighbor while protecting the small boy, Pico, who lives there. Yes, really awful people can still do really nice things for other people without canceling out the fact that they are awful people.

But no matter how much Joe rationalizes and explains that it’s for Beck’s benefit or happiness, the audience cannot look away from the undeniable fact that Joe is a cold-blooded stalker. Even when he snipes at another character on the street in a way I found endearing, or when Beck and Joe share an undeniably intimate and romantic moment, I could never bring myself to like him. In moments where I started to think, “If only he weren’t a complete creep…” I would remember that the same dynamic wouldn’t be there if he were normal. He only said the perfect thing because he invaded her privacy to manipulate her. And the show doesn’t let you forget that.

There were episodes where an “antagonist” would appear in the show, like Beck’s best friend, Peach. However, no matter how controlling or disgusting the other characters are, the best I could give Joe was an r/AmITheAsshole: “Everyone Sucks Here.” Even though I knew the story would end too soon, I wanted Joe to be caught in every episode. Unfortunately, when Joe was against the ropes, he did what stalkers and emotionally abusive intimate partners do best: He manipulated the situation until his rationalization became truth. And when that didn’t work…well, you’ll have to watch the show.

Hopefully, I’m not alone in this assessment. Hopefully, the young women who stream the show recognize that Joe never really loved the object of his affection. He only loved controlling her and owning her. Hopefully, this show, deemed a steamy, guilty Lifetime pleasure, can be taken seriously for how it portrays the different layers of abuse. Maybe instead of treating this narrative as pure entertainment, the show will convince people how serious and pervasive Joe’s behavior towards his intimate partner is. Maybe just one woman will watch and understand that her boyfriend doesn’t have to do everything Joe does in order to be a potentially life-threatening problem. She’ll hear Joe’s rationalization and something will sound a little too familiar and a little too real. Hopefully, the entertainment industry will start showing the dark side of the trope like You does.


[1] Alfred Hitchcock taped himself looking at something off camera and giving a slight smile. He then arranged the film in a way that made his character look at a young mother playing with her children; audiences found his smile endearing. For another audience he cut to footage of a young woman bending over to lay out a blanket before laying on it; the audience took the same sly smile and interpreted it completely differently.

Tweedledee and Tweedledum: Which Fyre Festival Documentary?


Maria Luevano ‘21
Staff Editor

Sam Pickett ‘21
Staff Editor

Pro Hulu

It’s 2019 and the Fyre Festival fail of 2017 is back in the form of two documentaries—one airing on Hulu and one on Netflix. If you didn’t get enough of seeing rich, devastated millennials arrive at what they thought was going to be the ultimate “luxury music festival” in the Bahamas, only to find out that none of it ever existed, now you have two chances to get the full, bizarre story. But who has time these days to watch two hour-and-a-half-long documentaries about the same event?[1] I’m here to save you some time and let you know that there’s really only one documentary you need to worry about watching: Hulu’s Fyre Fraud. This documentary will give you the full picture of how outrageous and delusional this fraud really was.

The main reason I prefer Hulu’s documentary is because it gives you the full picture of how this whole mess came to be. Who even is Billy McFarland? How is Ja Rule involved? Where did that cheese sandwich come from? Fyre Fraud answers all of these questions and more. The Hulu doc feels almost like a true crime documentary, complete with the suspense and drama of knowing exactly how bad everything is going to turn out. While the Netflix documentary feels flashier, and definitely uses way more drone footage, the Hulu documentary is all about giving the necessary background details.

Fyre Fraud has a major leg up on Netflix’s doc because they scored an interview with Billy McFarland, the mastermind behind the entire thing. Okay, allegedly he was paid to appear in the documentary, but ethics aside, who doesn’t want to hear from the guy that dreamt all of this up? I also appreciated hearing from a previous employee of Jerry Media, the company that ran the festival’s social media campaign.  Since the entire thing was basically just a huge social media promotion, his commentary is a great eye into what it was like actually working on the festival and how far people were willing to go to pretend like they were going to pull this off.

One thing I will hand to the Netflix doc—it has a lot more information on the days of the festival itself and what it was like for the people on the ground in the Bahamas.[2] But, it left me with some questions. If I’m being honest, it’s probably best to just watch both of them. They complement each other and fill in the blanks about this crazy story. Plus, we’ll all be hungover after Barrister’s this weekend, so what better time to waste three hours?

 

Pro-Netflix

I want to begin this review/debate by clarifying that I am not a film critic, nor do I pretend to be. As I was reading other people’s reviews of the two documentaries, they mentioned narrative structure, transitions between shots, and access to footage. Well, I don’t know about those things. What I do know is that I have lots of emotions and opinions, and those things were more triggered by Netflix’s Fyre than Hulu’s Fyre Fraud. And that’s where we shall begin.

            Watching the Hulu documentary, I got the feeling that festival creator Billy McFarland was something of a boy genius. He was painted as ambitious and full of potential—more like a youth in over his head than a compulsive liar and sociopath. This effect is compounded by the fact that Billy is interviewed in the documentary (rumor has it that Hulu paid him upwards of $250,000), which makes him somewhat more sympathetic to the audience. Netflix’s documentary, on the other hand, is full of original footage showing Billy[3] and Ja Rule, Billy’s partner, talking to the camera and looking incredibly dumb. The footage makes Billy look less like an evil genius and more like the cringe-y scammer he is. At one point, Billy is walking with former NFL player Jason Bell when he calls Fyre Festival “the biggest event of the decade” before strangely looking back, tapping his chest twice, and pointing awkwardly at Jason. The whole sequence made me so uncomfortable that I almost stopped watching thirty-six seconds in. Yet, it also does the best job of showing you how fake Billy is, and how inexcusable and remarkable the entire fraud was. Netflix caused me to react, while Hulu just caused me to observe.

            Secondly, Netflix did a better job of making me angry. While Hulu is worried about what Fyre means for our future with social media, Netflix sheds a light on the effect the fraud had on the local Bahamian workers, like owner of Exuma Point Restaurant MaryAnne Rolle. Rolle spent $50,000 of her life savings in order to help cater the event at the last minute and tearfully declares that she no longer wants to talk about the festival because it is upsetting. She wants to “start a new beginning” and to forget that the whole event ever happened. While Hulu was somewhat like watching a detached documentary about a serial killer, Netflix left me with a sense of deep injustice and understanding of how the real victims of this event were the Bahamian employees who were never paid, not the spoiled kids who were stupid enough to buy tickets.

            The final reason Netflix is the better documentary is less about my emotions and all about the memes. In today’s social-media-driven world, memes matter. There is no more iconic moment in either documentary than when Andy King, who helped produce the festival, reveals his willingness to do anything to help Billy pull off the festival.[4] When customs seized trucks of Evian water and demanded the payment of import fees, Billy called Andy and asked him to talk to the head of customs and “take one for the team.” Thankfully, the water was released without King having to perform the favor Billy asked, but it created a viral meme used to connote that desperate times sometimes call for desperate measures.

            That being said, I would still recommend watching the Hulu documentary to get the full picture of the disaster. It provides some important background information on McFarland’s rise to fame and also provides a more in-depth view of how Jerry Media contributed to the crisis. Since Jerry Media produced the Netflix documentary, they are kind of biased. And with that, I thank you for letting me express my emotions and promise that I’ll never write something like this ever again. You’re all welcome.


[1] Honestly, we all do, it’s only the third week of classes. But that’s not the point of the article.

[2] Also, the Evian Water dude.

[3] I call him Billy because I don’t respect him enough to refer to him by his last name. He acts like a Billy, and that is how I will treat him.

[4] If you have to ask, then you need to watch.

TV Guide: Just Watch Riverdale


Alison Malkowski ‘19
Format Editor

This article was originally going to thoughtfully recommend to you a well-balanced diet of television shows you hadn’t the time to find for yourself. I was going to spare you future  indecision paralysis with some fun lesser-known comedies (Alpha House, People of Earth, Borderline), shows featuring badass women (The Bletchley Circle, Call the Midwife, Insecure), which Netflix stand-up comedy collections to watch (all of The Stand-Ups, but especially Aparna Nancherla; see me after), and shows about how an Australian flapper (Miss Fisher) and Mr. Weasley but a priest now (Father Brown) are coping with the alarming murder rates in their communities. But then it came to my attention that not nearly enough of you are watching the CW show Riverdale. Let me tell you—with mild spoilers—why you must.

The malt-shop love triangle is still there but this Riverdale aims at more than just Archie on TV. Photo courtesy the CW.

The malt-shop love triangle is still there but this Riverdale aims at more than just Archie on TV. Photo courtesy the CW.

 

Reason #1: FP Jones

You know what really shakes up a semester to an invigorating start? A good identity crisis. You know what will get you there? The absurd attractiveness of Billy from the movie Scream just trying to be a good parent while co-running a gang with his son, played by Cole Sprouse from The Suite Life of Zack & Cody (a documentary on the perils of homeschooling millennials in the age of Airbnb).

Actor Skeet Ulrich’s character, Forsythe Pendleton Jones II (“FP” for short), has the name of an eighteenth century watch heir and the leather jacket of a motorcycle gang member who shops at H&M. Second only to Fred Andrews, he is ironically one of the most normal parents on this show. I know what those of you who actually watch Riverdale are thinking—“but didn’t he...literally kill someone?”—but the fact is that beggars can’t be choosers in the insane roulette of morals universe in which this show operates. Shout out to the time he worked as an old-fashioned busboy at Pop's Chock’Lit Shoppe (which is the local Riverdale diner, as it turns out, and not the gift shop of an off-brand Cracker Barrel).

 

Reason #2: The names

Riverdale is meant to be a mashup of classic characters from the Archie Comics. As a direct result, the names on this show are ridiculous. The entire Jones family leads the pack in this category of “Unfortunate Names with Which to Attend High School,” with father Forsythe Pendleton II, son Jughead, and daughter Jellybean. But also featured on Riverdale are such gems as Sweet Pea, Papa Poutine (who has a son named “Small Fry”), Fangs (not a dog), Hot Dog (is a dog), and Tall Boy (not a beer). Nothing elevates a CW drama to an artform quite like the line “It’s the Ghoulies, Jughead! Those bastards have Hot Dog!”

 

Reason #3: General intrigue

It’s important to have topics of conversation on hand that are unrelated to law and politics, and BOY can Riverdale fill this void in your life. Need something to chat about between government shutdowns and professor jokes about social media? Pick any decision the character Archie has ever made on this show and start there! No season on Riverdale would be complete without a series of awful judgment calls by this guy. My theory is that he might make better decisions if he hadn’t spent his entire life in a town lying to him about his natural hair color. If Archie’s one man angst show isn’t for you, don’t worry! CW’s hottest show has everything: An heiress to a maple syrup dynasty who shoots arrows for no reason, a cheerleading squad that never cheers but sometimes inexplicably sings, an underground non-alcoholic speakeasy run by a seventeen-year-old, and a parent-run brothel so haphazardly thrown in among the other insane things happening in this town that you will regularly forget about it.

 

Reason #4: Dungeons and Dragons!

Season Three of this emotional rollercoaster sees the introduction of “Griffins and Gargoyles,” a re-imagining of the game Dungeons and Dragons steeped in murders, a drug-dealing conspiracy, and a Breakfast Club-flavored flashback episode. Little more can be said on the subject without spoiling things, but rest assured that despite the fact that “G&G” plays a central role in the plot of the third season of Riverdale, it somehow competes for intrigue with an underground prison fight club, Silence of the Lambs-style maximum-security cell visits, and the parenting stylings of Shelly from Twin Peaks (who still has great eyebrows but is now deeply invested in a farm cult).

In conclusion, I know better than to suggest that you watch Derry Girls (a hilarious show about teens growing up in 1990s northern Ireland), or Would I Lie to You (a British panel show during which a rando just stands onstage while contestants argue about who they are), Party Down (a severely underrated, star-studded comedy from 2009), or Hello, My Twenties (a Korean soap opera with some of the wildest subplots ever imagined). I’ve heard your complaints of how you’re “in law school” and “don’t have ten hours in a row right now,” and have tailor-made this viewing recommendation just for you: just watch Riverdale. It may not be the show anyone needs, but boy on some level is it the show we deserve. Stay tuned for this week, with guest star Kelly Ripa.

----

acm4ae@virginia.edu

Tidying Up With Marie Kondo: The LW Review


Katharine Mann ‘19
Features Editor

At the risk of sparking controversy, I’m going to admit that I spent a decent chunk of my winter break watching Marie Kondo organize other peoples’ houses and then another chunk attempting to organizing my own. I only got as far as my bedroom, but it is satisfyingly tidy at the moment. I won’t attempt to explain all the reasons Marie Kondo is controversial, though the vast majority of criticism that I’ve seen relates to her helping people part with books.[1]  

A exactingly culled and precisely reorganized drawer full of inner joy (and neatly folded T-shirts). Photo courtesy Netflix.

A exactingly culled and precisely reorganized drawer full of inner joy (and neatly folded T-shirts). Photo courtesy Netflix.

My initial reaction to her show was that I love her, and her enthusiasm for what she does, and the fact that she seems to cherish her clients and their spaces. I can only hope I’ll feel as good about being a lawyer as she does about being a tidying expert. My other reaction was that the producers did an admirable job of selecting diverse clients and households. There were not many clients that I found actually likeable, though, and I began to wonder if vigorous eye-rolling counts as exercise. Marie loves them all, bless her, and she is the only reason I kept watching. She is soothing in both voice and manner, and her approach of nonjudgmental respect made me imagine that someday I, too, might like people. 

A good chunk of each episode is related to reducing the amount of clothing the clients own, which is always more than they need. For the only person reading who doesn’t know already, a brief summary: You pile everything in one place, hold each piece, and decide if it sparks joy. If it does, you keep it, and if it doesn’t, you thank it and give it away. But the really inspiring part for me is putting the clothes away again, because there’s a special way to fold everything to 1) save space, 2) keep the item in good condition, and 3) be able to see each item without rifling through stacks. Laundry just happens to be my favorite chore,[2] and folding is the best part, but even I was doing it wrong. I won’t attempt to explain it here, but you can watch the first episode for a glimpse, or one of the many YouTube videos demonstrating her method. 

The show has been criticized for having weak before-and-after reveals,[3] but my husband’s and my drawers are now a thing of beauty. I have, on more than one occasion, just opened a random drawer to see the pretty array and felt a little better about my life. The topic of the show came up the other night at the poker table; it was controversial even there, where the average for the six of us on the tidiness scale was about a three. One friend’s (perfectly valid) criticism is that some people just want to be messy—spending time fretting over organization takes away from actual life activities that are way more enriching. Marie would agree, I think, because she only helps people who want to be tidier. Another friend made the point that the attraction is about controlling some aspect of your life. If everything else is chaos, making your space tidy makes you feel like you’ve got it together at least a little bit. It seems obvious writing it out, but in the moment, I was like Oh my god that’s me and I’ve been a little concerned about myself ever since.  

One of the themes of the show is that the process of culling and tidying makes families bond. It’s not as simple as giving up things; rather you have to discuss and decide which things have priority. The sentimental items are often the triggers for these kinds of discussions. I have not ventured this far in the process, because it would mean going through the photos, letters, and other various accumulations of my parents, who are deceased, and I am not ready for that yet. Just as an example, my stepfather passed away last May, and he bequeathed me his Oxford English Dictionary—the unabridged, twenty-volume, two-hundred-pound, arguably obsolete version. I would say it “brings comfort” rather than “sparks joy,” but at any rate, I can’t let it go. I am therefore likely to put off the sentimental items part of the process until at least after graduation, if not until after the bar exam. 

But I will say that my family has bonded—or at least been mildly changed—by Marie’s show. I put an episode on the other day and my son sat down next to me and watched the whole thing, completely unbidden by me. Later that same day, he got frustrated with a project and yelled, “I’m just going to go clean my room,” and then proceeded to huff off and do just that. My husband and I don’t get to see a lot of each other, but he came home from work the other night after I’d tidied all the clothes except his t-shirt drawer. We each had a bourbon while he decided if each shirt sparked joy, and then I folded them and put them away.[4] Maybe not your idea of romance, but it was a joyful moment. I freely admit that my goal is to get a little control over my chaotic life, and maybe it’s just a diversionary tactic to empty out all the drawers and cabinets in the kitchen and decide what sparks joy when I should be reading for Bankruptcy. But the little benefits I’ve seen are worth continuing the process. 


[1]I do recommend an interesting take on the Shinto influence of her work and the idea that some of the backlash to it has xenophobic roots. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/marie-kondo-white-western-audineces_us_5c47859be4b025aa26bde77c.

[2] It’s not coincidental that machines do most of the work.

[3] https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2019/jan/04/tidying-up-with-marie-kondo-review-tv-destined-for-the-bin-bag-of-shame.

[4] Just in case you’re thinking, “Why doesn’t he fold his own stuff?”—I won’t let him. He does plenty of washing up and cooking, but laundry is my thing.

A Totally Impartial Review of Hamilton on Broadway


Michael Schmid ‘21
Staff Editor

The majority of my winter break was spent resting my beleaguered mind and body, battered by the 1L fall., in tranquility back in my hometown. “Take a break,” Eliza Schuyler Hamilton commands. You got it. Then, with all but a week left before my return to Charlottesville, an almost unheard-of gift came before us: (relatively) cheap tickets to Hamilton on Broadway! Surely this fortuitous break was due to a combination of a post-holiday dip in tourism mixed with warnings of the kinds of weather conditions that would usually elicit an email from Stephen T. Parr. 

Now I must confess, going on trips in the godforsaken middle of winter is something my family holds near and dear to our hearts. Maybe geography is to blame, with our hometown in Central New York surrounded by nothing but tundra for—let’s be honest—a good chunk of the year. Or maybe trips are just more memorable when they are tinged with a bit of climatic adversity. Whatever the reason may be, this ritual was once again resumed over winter break when my parents and I headed off on a short jaunt to New York City to see the smash Broadway hit, and admittedly a mini-obsession of mine, Hamilton.

From the beginning, the weather was not on our side. Several inches of snow blanketed the back roads to I-81 as our Subaru battled the elements deftly. The snow was long gone by the time we arrived in Manhattan, only to be replaced with whipping winds and the type of cold air that stings the face and causes the eyes to water helplessly. Our arrival delayed by the weather, we only had time for dinner before the show. Creatures of habit as we are, we headed off to our go-to restaurant only to discover it existed no longer; signage gone, any evidence of an eatery erased. Maybe it’s now Harry Potter-themed and you just have to run at the building really fast to gain entry? No matter, with no shortage of restaurants near Grand Central, we found substitute arrangements and did not have to rely on street meat to fill our bellies.

Once evening came, we trekked westward towards the bright lights of Times Square, bundled up as we braved the single-digit wind chill. Eventually, we made it to Richard Rogers Theater—the room where it happens! Our seats may have been near the very back, but there honestly isn’t a bad seat in the entirety of the theater. I took my seat and anxiously awaited the opening song. My towering five-and-a-half-foot frame was squeezed into the incredibly small seat (people really must have been a lot smaller back in the day). A Playbill rested in one hand; in the other my beverage in an awesome Hamilton-themed plastic cup I am definitely using constantly and keeping forever. Showtime!

Unsurprisingly, the entire cast was extraordinarily talented and left me engrossed every second of the performance. If you’re waiting for me to say something at least mildly critical of the performance, it won’t happened. I won’t deign to offer any criticism, and I chafe at the thought.

“Wait for It,” the R&B-style track that chronicles the cautious and oft-overlooked Aaron Burr’s internal struggle as he reckons with the brash golden boy Alexander Hamilton, has continued to be among my favorites and was brilliantly performed. Other standouts include “My Shot,” “Satisfied,” and the Cabinet battles.

James Monroe Inglehart, perhaps best known as the Genie in the original Broadway production of Aladdin and who possesses an apropos name for the current production, stood out in his portrayal of the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson. An often unheralded but ubiquitous group of performers is the ensemble, without whom the show would not seem quite so larger-than-life. Even the second time around, I am still in awe of the physical endurance of the performers, who remain in perpetual motion for nearly three hours carrying out expertly choreographed routines. King James, as always, did not disappoint with a dash of comedic relief and absurdity. Last but not least, a shoutout to Thayne Jasperson, who recently reprised his role as Samuel Seabury, which he played when the show first began, which allows me to boast that I saw at least one member of the original cast.

One of the best things about live theater is that even someone such as myself, who unashamedly knows every word to every song and has already seen the show once in Chicago, is how each performance of a show done by different cast members can remain both true to the show’s original spirit while still allowing for variation and change. Seeing the show live for a second time, I notice slight variations that make the renditions unique and each one phenomenal in their own right.

After spending some time the next day traversing Manhattan, we headed back Upstate with our mission in NYC complete. Seeing the show twice still was not enough, and immediately after leaving we began to scheme for a third trip to the theater to see Hamilton once again. No, I will never be satisfied.

___

ms3ru@virginia.edu

Breakfast in C'ville: Section A's Squad of Hungry 1Ls Reviews Post-Workout Pancake Palaces


Sarah-Jane Lorenzo ‘21
Staff Editor

Tyler D’Ambrose ‘21
Staff Editor

Sam Pickett ‘21
Staff Editor

Have you ever wanted to know exactly where to get your weekday breakfast after working out? Fortunately, the Section A Workout Squad is here to help!

 Cavalier Diner

Our Overall Rating: 9/10

Reasoning: Quality meals, good service, and good company. Enough said.

Tyler: If you’re a fan of pancakes made from scratch, perfectly cooked bacon, and endless coffee refills, then Cavalier Diner is the place to go. This place never disappoints! All breakfast lovers need to try Cavalier Diner at least once while in Charlottesville. And if you happen to despise quality food and quality service, the door is right there *sternly points to door*.

Sarah-Jane: Two words: crispy bacon!! Reliably good bacon is so hard to find that it inspired our instant devotion to the Cavalier Diner. Everyone is friendly and the service is great. Add some eggs and amazing pancakes, and you’re set!

Sam: While the Cavalier Diner doesn’t invite much attention, it’s a surprisingly homey place to get a meal. The environment is relaxed, the staff are caring (they’re like my mom away from home (love you mom)), and everything I’ve eaten there has been hot, delicious, and homemade. I even tried scrapple for the first time, and while my stomach hasn’t been the same since, neither has my heart. And that’s a trade I’m willing to make. Also, Sarah-Jane is correct: Their bacon is crispy and shows real dedication to customer service. It’s everything I need from a breakfast place, and more.

 McDonald’s

Our Overall Rating: 7/10

Reasoning: We don’t want to be the dedicated fans of McD’s we’ve become, but when you’re a hungry, tired, and broke first-year law student, you take what you can get! And you know what? The coffee, hotcakes, and ice cream sundaes are pretty darn good.

Sarah-Jane: I may eat here too often. About a month ago, during my seventh visit of the week, an employee mentioned that he was becoming concerned about my diet. That’s when I knew I was adequately committed.

Tyler: McD’s is what it is. Part of the charm of well-known fast food chains is that you know exactly what you’re in for whenever you go. Could the food be a little better? Probably. But does McD’s provide a decent, quick, and cheap breakfast whenever you need it? Absolutely. As an added bonus, if you go there often enough, the manager might start to recognize you and ask personal questions about your life choices.

Sam: I am actually the least qualified out of the three to answer this question, as I’ve only had the McDonald’s breakfast twice and I don’t even know their staff well enough to warrant inappropriately personal questions. That being said, their hash browns are perfection (crispy on the outside, soft on the inside (just like me)) and their Egg White McMuffin is great for when you’ve just worked out and aren’t totally willing to throw it away on McDonald’s.

 Bodo’s Bagels

Our Overall Rating: 8/10

Sarah-Jane: Bodo’s is without a doubt the best destination for a morning run; there is simply no better place to pack in carbs complimented by a cup of coffee. We visit Bodo’s on cardio days, which strategically allows us to eat even more delicious bagels once we arrive. It’s always a good call.

Sam: Bodo’s Bagels is already a household name at the Law School, so I’m not entirely sure how much new analysis I can add.  But since we were assigned this topic (and because I feel significant pressure to write something to show my worth to this newspaper besides eating their pizza every Monday) I will say that thanks to Bodo’s I have developed a somewhat strange addiction to everything bagels with strawberry cream cheese?? Is this what they meant when they said law school would change the way I think about the world?

Tyler: In the words of the Law School’s Assistant to the Dean Tyler Ambrose “A bagel’s a bagel’s a bagel.” I dissent. A perfectly toasted bagel with homemade eggs and crispy bacon is no mere bagel. Plus, the consistent ’60s folk and rock music played there is an added bonus that sets Bodo’s apart from your typical bagel joint.

 IHO….B?

Our Overall Rating: 3/10

Reasoning: Sadly, since IHOP switched its “P” for a “B,” our experience has just been B-ad. We know it’s the International House of Burgers, and so on behalf of the United States we would like to formally apologize to the rest of the world for foisting this chain upon you.[1]

Tyler: IHOP (IHOB[2]) should consider another name change to ISNUB because we were snubbed of quality service and timely coffee refills.[3] :(

Sarah-Jane: IHOPe they can return to their former glory, but my expectations are low. 

Sam: OUR MEAL TOOK 2 HOURS AND OUR FOOD WAS NOT GOOD ENOUGH TO WARRANT THAT KIND OF PERFORMANCE TIME. WHEN WE GOT OUR COFFEE MUGS, THEY WERE ONLY HALF-FILLED.  WHO DOES THAT? The International House of Bad-service, that’s who. *SCREAMS WITH DISTRESS*

 Free Breakfast at the Law School

Our Overall Rating: 10/10

Reasoning: Res ipsa. We love you, Dean Davies and Kate Duvall!!

___

sll5fg@virginia.edu
tld6bb@virginia.edu
shpdz@virginia.edu


[1] Although we do not apologize for spreading Freedom. ’Murica.

[2] Google Docs thinks IHOB is a typo. Take that as you will.

[3] My father always told me not to put all my eggs in one basket. But when your basket consists of a mediocre breakfast, it might be worth considering tossing another egg or two in the breakfast basket before claiming you are THE burger destination.

The Villa Diner, Then and Now: The Law Weekly Review


Jill Rubinger ‘19
Diner Aficionado

            When we arrived back to North Grounds for this semester not much had changed. The Law School is still always either really hot or really cold. Mandy is still stirring up caffeinated drinks in ScoCo, George Geis is still looking gooooood, and the 1Ls are still sitting four-to-a-table in the library. However, there was one huge change. The beloved Villa Diner, which closed briefly at the end of last school year, had reopened in a new location on US-29. As a consistent patron of Villa Diner and lover of breakfast food, I was nervous and excited about this big move.

The Villa’s former, unhurried location. Photo courtesy  The Cavalier Daily .

The Villa’s former, unhurried location. Photo courtesy The Cavalier Daily.

            The UVA Foundation owns the property where the Old Villa (hereinafter “OV”) was located and recently decided to terminate the diner’s lease to further development plans for the University. According to the Cavalier Daily, which interviewed Villa owner Ken Beachley, reported that Beachley and his wife were aware of the eventual demolition plans when they first purchased the diner back in June 2005, but were still upset by the news when the time finally came to relocate. So it is worth noting that the owners were perfectly content with the OV location. And so was I. My opinions about the big move stem from nostalgic tendencies and incurable impatience.

The Villa’s new location - featuring “cleaner vibes” but longer waits. Photo Jill Rubinger /  Virginia Law Weekly.

The Villa’s new location - featuring “cleaner vibes” but longer waits. Photo Jill Rubinger / Virginia Law Weekly.

            Excited to try New Villa (hereinafter “NV”), I pulled into the very crowded parking lot on a Sunday morning. The NV aesthetic factor is worth noting. It’s a good–looking diner, not gonna lie. The white brick exterior is clean and inviting. It definitely looks nicer than the OV exterior. But what gave OV some of its charm was its hidden–gem quality. At OV, there was never a wait. I would wait fifteen minutes maximum on a weekend. I also enjoyed the layout of OV. When you walked in you could see everything happening; None of the tables were hidden in any nooks and crannies of the building. If your friends were there, you’d spot them quickly. This made for some fun coincidental group breakfasts during my times at OV. Thomas Watson ’19, a Villa staple, notes the inconvenience of the new location. In lamenting the move, he remarked, “[OV] had a bigger parking lot with multiple points of entry and the new location is on the other side of that Barracks Road traffic light, which is always a nightmare.”

            At NV, the wait time has skyrocketed. I cannot tell if the new location has drawn a larger crowd or if there is simply less seating in the new building. If you’re going on a Sunday morning with a group of four, expect to wait thirty to forty-five minutes alongside the church crowd and the undergrads. Shanna Adler ’19 says she hopes to one day become such a regular that she can get a priority spot in the diner to avoid this hassle. There is a larger waiting area in NV, but that is simply because they need it now. Once seated, you can take in the ambiance of the new location. The tables are spread out and are more removed from the kitchen. This may be a positive feature to many people, but I kind of like it when I am seated close to the kitchen in a diner. This is probably why I enjoy Waffle House so much. There are definitely cleaner vibes at NV. According to Winnie McBride ’19, a Triple Hoo and Villa expert, the restaurant feels clean and has better natural lighting.  

            I would say that the biggest differences between OV and NV are procedural in character. The substantive stuff hasn’t changed. The food is still delicious and the staff still wears royal blue collared shirts sporting the diner’s logo. There are still paper place mats at the table featuring a fun-fact-filled illustrated map of the state of Virginia. The menus are the same, and I still order the Super Big Complete Breakfast every time I go. All in all, it’s still the best quick diner in Charlottesville. Just be sure to factor in a few extra minutes of wait time before your next trip.

 

Bubble Tea in C'ville: The Law Weekly Review


Grace Tang ‘21
Staff Editor

Christina Luk ‘21
Staff Editor

Dear readers, I invite you to take a moment from your busy day procrastinating from your increasingly pressing responsibilities to indulge in a meditative exercise. Clear your mind. Continue to breathe as you have been since birth. Picture a white space. Imagine in that space a clear cup before you, bobbing in the friendly manner that cups do. We’re going to fill the bottom-third of that cup with delicious, chewy tapioca pearls. (What’s a tapioca pearl? It’s a piece of happiness you can eat.) Next, we’ll add some ice, clink, clink, and your favorite tea. Add to that a bit of milk and honey, and we’ve got some bubble tea!

Two sweet, enticing glasses of Kung Fu Tea’s bubble tea. Photo courtesy Kung Fu Tea.

Two sweet, enticing glasses of Kung Fu Tea’s bubble tea. Photo courtesy Kung Fu Tea.

Bubble tea, boba tea, or 珍珠奶茶, is a popular tea-based drink, which originated in Taiwan during the 1980s. Over the past ten years, the popularity of this tasty beverage has skyrocketed and bubble tea shops have spread out from the island of Taiwan across the world. Bubble tea can be easily recognized by its distinctive tapioca balls, which rest gently at the bottom of the drink like friendly black pearls. Drinks can be grouped into three broad categories: (1) Classic tea-based flavors, such as jasmine, green, or black tea; (2) Flavored teas, which range from familiar (strawberry, mango, grape, etc.) to slightly more adventurous (lychee, guava, taro); and (3), slushie/smoothie blends, which are thicker and include flavors like Oreo, chocolate, and mocha. Aside from tapioca, other popular toppings include pudding, aloe, jelly, and red bean.  

There are two competing theories about the origin of the name “bubble tea.” The first theory is that the name refers to the tiny air-bubbles that form when the drink is shaken to mix its contents. The other theory is that “bubble” refers to the tapioca pearls at the bottom of the container.

In Taiwan, there is a bubble tea shop around every street corner. Here in Charlottesville, we’ve worked hard to find a couple of places where you can get your bubble-tea fix when the mood strikes. Remember, when the gunning gets tough, the tough get bubble tea.

 

Kung Fu Tea

1001 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903

Pros: Kung Fu Tea is the place to go for bubble tea! This franchise started in New York and has not lost traction as it expanded southward. With an incredible selection of flavors and toppings, this shop is your one-stop pick-me-up for that midweek hump. Not only can you select your own toppings, you can also adjust the ice and sugar levels in your drink to your own liking. The inside of the shop is trendy and inviting, featuring comfy sofas and board games for use. It’s a great place to go with friends and play a game of Taboo or Codename. Kung Fu Tea also has an app, which you can scan when you check out for special promotions and free drinks. The sheer array of drink options can be overwhelming, but you can’t go wrong with the basics like Kung Fu Milk Tea, or anything off of their Top 10 Drinks Menu.

Cons: Since this shop specializes in bubble tea, there isn’t a large selection of food options. The limited menu, which includes pork buns, shumai, and potstickers, is reasonably priced and pretty good. Although Kung Fu Tea is available for Grubhub delivery, they do occasionally mix up an order, which can be really disappointing at 10 p.m.

 

Got Dumplings?

1395 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903

Pros: Got Dumplings? sells dumplings, ramen, and other drool-worthy Asian snacks. This means that with just one trip inside, you can get a meal and bubble tea. The tea menu is extensive and contains traditional milk teas, fruit teas, and slushies. The bubble tea comes only in large, which means you don’t need to feel guilty about getting the bigger size. The flavor of the tea also tends to be milder, which may be good for a first time bubble-tea drinker.

Cons: The store is located on The Corner, which makes parking difficult. There is a parking garage on Wertland Street off of 14th Street NW. Got Dumplings? is on the small side and gets busy during lunch. Additionally, the quality of your drink depends on who makes it, so consistency leaves something to be desired. Overall, Got Dumplings? Is an amazing place for dumplings and noodles, but we’d recommend elsewhere if you’re looking specifically for a good cup of tea.

Mezeh vs Cava: The Great Debate


Jill Rubinger ‘19
Mezeh Enthusiast

Nick Prukop ‘19
Cava Enthusiast

For Mezeh

It is among the classic Law School debates: old ScoCo food or new ScoCo food? Risa or Leslie? Chex Mix or Goldfish in the snack office? Cava or Mezeh? This may be an unpopular opinion now that Cava has made its Charlottesville debut, but I am fully Team Mezeh. In the world of fast, casual Mediterranean fare, Mezeh gets it right. Because it is located in Stonefield shopping center, I love to get Mezeh before making a trip to Trader Joe’s. (Pro tip: Go to Mezeh before so you don’t overspend on weekly grocery shopping.) The Mezeh menu is simple, but that’s because they don’t need to get too fancy with the offerings for the food to be delicious. The line is sometimes almost out the door (hint hint: it’s popular), but the staff is a well-oiled machine that gets you your food in a timely fashion.

What’s on the menu, you ask? First, you can choose from a bowl, a pita pocket, or a wrap. I usually choose a bowl. I get half greens and half grains. Although you can get this at Cava, I find the greens at Mezeh to be fresher—in fact, I find the ingredients at Mezeh to be fresher generally. Next, you choose your protein. The seasoning on both the chicken and falafel tastes like it came from the outdoor markets in Israel. After choosing a protein, you get your unlimited choice of toppings. Here’s a quick rundown: The couscous is the perfect texture, the Turkish salad is a fresh combination of tomatoes and cucumbers, and the spicy feta dip adds a fantastic kick. You get your pick of multiple hummus flavors—OG hummus, cilantro, and spicy. There is one ingredient in particular that makes Mezeh the ultimate Mediterranean dining spot: the eggplant. It is delicious. The restaurant slices eggplant and bakes it to perfect caramelized perfection. They’re always pulling another batch out of the oven because it is such a crowd pleaser. It’s crisp but not too crisp and kind of sweet. Seriously, I could write this entire article about it, but I will refrain. After I ask for extra eggplant, I top off my bowl with sauces. Depending on how much of a kick I want, I either ask for Tzatziki or Harissa sauce—sometimes I get both if I’m feeling crazy. At the end of the ordering process, the magician who has put together your Mediterranean feast will ask you if you want some pita. You should absolutely answer “yes.” Now you’re ready to eat a fantastic meal from the far superior Mezeh.

I would like to admit to some personal reasons why I am not Cava’s biggest fan. First off, I hate bell peppers. So many things on the Cava menu have peppers in them that it keeps me away from a lot of toppings I may otherwise be into. Also, two times I ordered Cava on the app. And two times it was not ready when I got there. So that was kind of annoying. The parking is garbage and it is very difficult to get into the lot. For such a close a proximity to Barracks, it is incredibly difficult to get to. 

I know that my Cava-loving counterpart will sing the restaurant’s praises about proximity to his Pavilion apartment, but really he just likes to be able to get back to play another game of Fortnite. Such dedication to his PlayStation may be clouding his judgment and taste bud accuracy. All of this to say: Mezeh forever.

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jer6ua@virginia.edu

 For Cava

Cava is amazing.  Cava improves quality of life.  Cava is better than Mezeh.

Cava is short for California-Virginia, as its name pays homage to the two states that I have called home, an exceptional combination and sound business decision. Although far from the wonders of the Mediterranean Sea, Cava allows each of us to enjoy the rich flavors of its exquisite cuisine right here in C’ville, just minutes from school.

It all starts with its extremely convenient location just across Emmet street from the Barracks Road Shopping Center in a brand-new building complex, a huge upgrade from the abandoned field that occupied the area for the last two years. Immediately upon entering the finest fast-casual restaurant Charlottesville has to offer, the guest is welcomed with a wonderful aroma full of Mediterranean spices and warm pita bread. As you then walk through the tastefully decorated space and up to the counter, you are graciously greeted by the kind, talented Cava-ians, or as I like to call them, friends. These amazing people are with you every step of the way as you must make some tough choices on your journey to the perfect bowl, but their charm and generosity quickly erase any and all stress you might be carrying from Slaughter Hall. These people exemplify the significance of choosing such a quality establishment when it’s time to eat, but what sets Cava apart from its fake, lackluster competitors is the food.

After you have decided if the day calls for greens or grains as the base of your meal, you are blessed with the option of picking three different dips or spreads to begin the flavor explosion in what once was just an ordinary bowl made entirely from recycled material. Experimenting is key here as each choice has the potential to change the way you look at your sad homemade salads moving forward, and you cannot go wrong. You then select a protein to be heaped into the mix, and of course an endless supply of incredible toppings and dressings to finish it off. The Cava menu is always changing to match the flavors of the current szn, so go in today for a little taste of fall with their seasonal vegetables and red-pepper dressing.

Once you’ve finished coaching up your team of assembly-line workers and grabbed your free mini pita, whip out the Cava app to collect those points, thank your new homie for hooking you up with extra chicken, and go have a great rest of your day.  More Cava = More life.

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nap2hn@virginia.edu

Hidden Gems: Four Underappreciated Charlottesville Restaurants Reviewed


Winnie McBride ‘21
Guest Reviewer

Daniel Grill ‘21
Staff Writer

From Mas to Marco and Luca’s, we are lucky to have an eclectic food scene in Charlottesville. In fact, Charlottesville has far more to offer than many realize. Just a short drive from familiar restaurants on The Corner and the Downtown Mall are hidden gems such as Greenwood Grocery, Riverside Lunch, Doctor Ho’s Humble Pie, and La Flor Michoacana. These restaurants all boast the best of what Charlottesville has to offer: great food in a unique environment.  

 

Greenwood Grocery: Greenwood Grocery is an artisanal grocery store filled with local goods such as honey and meats. It has an amazing and eclectic selection of beers and wines. However, Greenwood Grocery is better known for their fresh and reimagined takes on basic sandwiches. 

We tried three different sandwiches and could not get enough. Winnie raved about the “Blue Slate,” calling it the most perfect turkey sandwich she has ever eaten. Daniel ate the “Landrance” and dreamt about it for a few days after. He is not usually a fan of tomatoes, but he loved the sun-dried tomato spread, delicate prosciutto, and light fresh mozzarella. Tom ordered the “Devon” and found the roast beef as fresh as the mountain air outside.  

Twenty minutes from the Law School and nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge, Greenwood Grocery is a hidden gem. Be warned though, as this artisanal grocery store (literally built on the foundation of a roadside fruit stand) is easily miss-able when you are on the road to the nearby Crozet wineries and Skyline Drive.  

 

Riverside Lunch: One word: BURGERS. It didn’t take long for our waitress to recommend the most popular item on the menu, and it did not disappoint. The double cheeseburger was very filling and delicious. The chef flattened the patties, a signature of Riverside, which added great “caramelization” to the burger. This burger is my favorite among Citizen Burger and Jack Brown’s Burger Joint. We also shared a basket of fries, which was more than enough for the three of us. The fries were solid. They were thin and crunchy, similar to fries you might get from a fast food restaurant.  

A homestyle burger from Riverside Lunch. Photo courtesy Riverside Lunch.

A homestyle burger from Riverside Lunch. Photo courtesy Riverside Lunch.

In addition to the food, Riverside Lunch has a pleasant diner atmosphere. The waitresses were happy to chat with us, and it seemed like every other patron had eaten there many times before. Even the tables scream local Charlottesville as they are covered with ads for nearby stores, many of which likely closed years ago.  

This was also the most affordable restaurant we tried. The most expensive item on the menu was $9.50, and most dishes were in the $4.00-$6.00 range. Riverside also sells beer for $3.00. Riverside is a must-try restaurant for anyone looking for a great diner style meal with local flavor. 

 

Doctor Ho’s Humble Pie: Doctor Ho’s Humble Pie: The Alternative Pizza is an unassuming restaurant located next to a gas station across the street from Pippin Hill Vineyard. Aside from the smell of freshly-baked pizza, the restaurant’s decor is the first thing we noticed when we entered. The dining room is adorned with old-school Americana signs and Grateful Dead memorabilia.  

The authors’ half/half Annie Oakley / Humble Pie at Dr. Ho’s.

The authors’ half/half Annie Oakley / Humble Pie at Dr. Ho’s.

The food was excellent as well. We enjoyed our Annie Oakley and Humble Pie specialty pizzas. The pizzas served at Dr. Ho’s are classic pizza, more similar to the style served at Christian’s (although much better) than they are to the thin crust style served at Lampo. They also have a wide variety of excellent appetizers, like wings. Dr. Ho’s is a great pizza spot, especially if you’re planning to eat before going to Pippin Hill or to sneak more substantial food into the vineyard known for its paltry food options.  

 

La Flor Michoacana: La Flor Michoacana is primarily a popsicle and ice cream shop, but they also sell Mexican food, candy, and snacks. We recommend the popsicles as they offer much more than your standard popsicle. Between the three of us, we tried the mango chile, strawberry and Oreo popsicles. The mango chile popsicle had tons of real mango in it, but beware; it was spicy. The strawberry popsicle was a true light delight filled with real strawberries. The Oreo popsicle was a traditional vanilla popsicle with two full Oreos and smaller Oreo pieces. Whether you prefer fruit or an ice cream popsicle, La Flor Michoacana is a delicious and fun way to cap off a great meal. 

We truly enjoyed exploring these restaurants in and around Charlottesville. Each brought unique flavors and vibes that we can’t wait to experience again. We hope that you will take the opportunity to try one of these restaurants. You won’t be disappointed! 



[L]elp! The Law Weekly Reviews Charlottesville Asian Eateries


Grace Tang ‘21
Staff Writer

Christina Luk ‘21
Staff Writer

Bang! - Asian Tapas 

213 2nd St. SW, Charlottesville, Va. 

 

Grace: I am biased toward Bang! since the restaurant offers two of my favorite things: tapas and staple Asian classics with a twist. The restaurant is conveniently located a few blocks from the Downtown Mall, and has the perfect atmosphere for a date or night out with friends. I visited Bang! for dinner and I was struck by the beautiful lights strung outside the cheerful two-story brick building. The service was fantastic, especially as the waiters knew their menu very well and gave great drink suggestions from their extensive list. My top choices include: scallops, any steamed buns, and tuna poke. Bonus points for the delicious variety of vegan and vegetarian options available. Rating: 4.2/5 

 

Christina: Bang! It’s trendy, it’s fun, it’s pretty much everything you expect from a restaurant with an exclamation point in its name. The small plates are a little pricey for my taste, but they taste. So. Good. And remember to order a classy cocktail to add to the atmosphere. Everyone at your table will thank you. This is a very good place to bring your friends or a date, maybe even back-to-back the same week because you can’t believe how tasty everything is. I recommend the Tuna Poke, Chickpea Spring Rolls, and seasonal Rockfish. Rating: 4.0/5 

  

Sushi King – All-You-Can-Eat Sushi 

2849, 171 Seminole Ct, Charlottesville, Va. 

 

Grace: VALUE and VARIETY are the two things that come to mind when I think of Sushi King. When a friend first informed me of $13 all-you-can-eat sushi in Charlottesville, I was very cautious. However, I was pleasantly blown away by how good the sushi was. Pro Tip: Order a bunch of rolls and ask for all of your sushi in a boatwith dry ice if you want to be extra fancy. TRUST ME, your Instagram and Snapchat will thank you later. Additionally, there is a self-serve appetizer and dessert bar to indulge in. My personal favorites include: Dragon Roll, Volcano Roll, and Steak Hibachi. Rating: 4.0/5 

  

Christina: There are days when you want something nice, and there are days when only sheer quantity will fill the void inside. For the latter, I recommend Sushi King. For the round number of $12.99, you can run the gambit of culinary delight. Get the spring rolls, get the shrimp tempura, get the fried rice, hibachi steak, and miso soup. Get all the sushi you want and then turn the menu over and get all the rolls. How many rolls, you wonder? Thirty, dear reader. One for each cold October day as we inch inexorably closer to the PILA auction and the beginning of the end. When you go, remember me, and order the Sea Angel Roll. Rating: 5/5 

 

Tara Thai and Silk Thai: The Thai-Thai Grudge Match 

Silk Thai: 2210 Fontaine Ave, Charlottesville, Va.  

Tara Thai: 1107 Emmet St. N, Charlottesville, Va. 

 

Grace: Silk Thai is phenomenal. A friend recommended the location for dinner after the OVaL hike last Friday, and it was a surprise gem. The restaurant is tucked away in a corner, and the inside is decorated with a funky assortment of art. As soon as we entered, the smell of delicious goodness hit us like a brick wall. I don’t think it’s possible to go wrong with anything on the menu, but the particularly good options include: soup (Tom Yum and Tom Ka), drunken noodles, crispy duck, and pineapple fried rice (that comes in a real pineapple). The value-to-price ratio is incredible since every dish is enough for two or three meals, so you can enjoy your food for meals to come. Rating: 4.5/5 

 
Christina: For those of you who have been looking for the perfect Thai restaurant to stress-eat your heart out, look no further than Barracks Road, because Tara Thai is the place for you! It’s close to school, decently priced, and generously portioned. Nothing strongly stood out when I walked in, but trust me when I say that the food here is delicious. I strongly recommend ordering the panang curry and your drink of choice while you settle in to professor-watch. I have it on good authority that this is the favorite haunt of Professors Bowers and Barzun. Do you have a particularly good question about legal history or theory? Keep it to yourself and take another bite of curry. Rating 4.5/5 

Crazy Rich Asians: Mixed Messages about Asian

Eric Hall ‘18
Editor Emeritus, Sr.


Barely ten minutes into watching Crazy Rich Asians, I caught myself tearing up. In the film’s prologue, a racist hotel manager dismisses Eleanor Sung-Young (played by the peerless Michelle Yeoh) and her bedraggled family. “Perhaps some place in Chinatown?” he suggests. Sung-Young’s wrath is swift and satisfying—she buys the luxury hotel outright and shows him the door.  Sitting next to my own Chinese mom in the theatre, I thought back to the times an airline employee or a repairman had dismissed her, and how she had fiercely made them regret it. Crazy Rich Asians is a breakthrough. I loved it for so many reasons. Its depiction of pride and expectation in Asian mother–son relationships felt familiar. The disapproving but envious treatment of ABCs (American-Born Chinese) was gut-wrenchingly accurate. Setting aside the “Crazy Rich” part, so many of the film’s most powerful moments could have happened in my own life. I never imagined scenes like these would play at my local Regal Cineplex. Asian journalists have praised the film’s victories—and fairly so: representation matters. But if Hollywood is going to make more movies with all-Asian cast (and I sincerely hope they do), we need to talk about this one’s shortcomings. As a mixed-race, half-white, half-Chinese male, I think casting Henry Golding in this role was a mistake.

Western culture has long emasculated Asian men. In movies and TV, they are depicted as awkward, and devoid of any sex appeal. Think of how rarely you see a movie that features an Asian guy who isn’t a martial arts master, a nerd, or the butt of a penis joke. My heroes growing up were Harrison Ford, Pierce Brosnan, Sam Neill, men who saved the day and got the girl but looked nothing like me (and even less like my Asian relatives). They starred in movies in which Asian men played the conniving villain, or the ethically bankrupt geneticist.  These depictions of desirable White men juxtaposed with undesirable Asian men seep into real life. They erode the confidence of Asian young men. They implant the idea that Whiteness—and only Whiteness—is masculine. As a teenager, I was certain my lot was to be brainy and behind the scenes. Talking to girls was unthinkable because I believed I was deeply undateable. That view is apparently widespread. In his book Dataclysm: Love, Sex, Race, and Identity, founder of OKCupid Christian Rudder compiled data from three popular dating sites. In the tens of thousands of anonymous responses, he found that women were 26 to 35 percent less likely to rate Asian males attractive. Asian females, by comparison, were actually more likely to be rated attractive than average. As Eddie Huang, writer of the ABC series Fresh Off the Boat, has written, “Asian men are told that they simply don't possess the ingredients to be considered masculine or attractive.” While these depictions have subsided in recent years, no Asian has yet ascended to leading man status. Those roles remain reserved for the chiseled White men I grew up watching. Where is our Asian Hugh Grant or Idris Elba? Where are the Asian actors notable not for their coding skills or karate chops but their sex appeal?

Here was the promise of Crazy Rich Asians: a movie with an Asian man worthy of desire. Finally, an idol to show young men with Asian heritage that they too deserve romance. Instead, we got Henry Golding; a message diluted by one-part Whiteness. To be sure, Golding was born in Malaysia to a Malaysian mother. He is a fine actor and excelled in the role. He was funny and charming, and looked great shirtless—prerequisites for any rom-com heartthrob. As a fellow Hapa male, of course I look forward to seeing him in more roles that might have gone to all White actors. More importantly, he depicted Asian-ness accurately. He spoke the language and smoothly respected his elders in a way that reflected his genuinely Asian upbringing. But my complaint isn’t with Golding’s cultural representation. My complaint is far more superficial. Cultural representation matters, yes. But so does physical representation. When minorities talk about representation in film or the White House or the Supreme Court, part of what we’re looking for is role models who look like us. Looks matter, especially in the romantic comedy genre where the themes only reach skin deep.

A week after watching Crazy Rich Asians, I saw BlacKkKlansman. One scene reenacts a striking speech from real-life activist Kwame Ture. He talks about growing up watching TV and rooting against the Black villains—the characters who shared his physical features. He describes his realization that Black men and women have to define for themselves what is beautiful, to “stop running away from being Black.” Those words, although directed at another people with a distinct experience, stirred a buried shame in me. For most of my life—and even in law school—I used my White half to escape my Chinese half. On my dating profile, when I had one, I described myself as only “vaguely Asian.” In college, I developed a canned response for the times someone would make an Asian dick joke and look to see if I was offended. I’d say, “Don’t worry, only my top half is Asian.” In middle school, when I moved to suburban Ohio, I let people believe I was Hawaiian so I wouldn’t be sorted with the Asian kids who played chess and joined math club. In elementary school, I tugged at the corners of my eyelids with everyone else chanting “Chinese, Japanese, dirty knees, look at these!”

I am embarrassed that I acted this way, but—although it is no excuse—the Asian culture I grew up with never tried to correct me. On the contrary, much of Asian culture promotes Whiteness. Many K-Pop stars, for example, are distinctly “Hapa” or mixed race. My own mom had surgery to add folds to her eyelids. I’ve known many full-Asian friends who wear colored contacts to lighten their dark brown eyes, and get perms to tame their stiff black hair.

As much as my Asian family encouraged Whitewashing myself, my White friends let me get away with it. They laughed at my dick-joke rebuttal and peppered me with questions about which of my traits were White. I have memories from every stage of my life when a friend would mention a common stereotype about Asians, then seek to reassure me: “Oh, but I’m sure that doesn’t apply to you because you’re only half.” I dated girls who told me they would never date an Asian guy, but mercifully made an exception for me. It’s as if society carved out an exception for me because I am mixed with White. Again, the data plays this out. In the same analysis that found that Asian men are less likely to be rated attractive, Rudder found that men who check boxes for both Asian and White get a 32–48 percent boost over the average. As Rudder puts it, “When you add White, ratings go up, across the board.”

So what does casting Henry Golding do for the perception that Whiteness equals beauty? Absolutely nothing. If anything, his casting entrenches the status quo. Just as I have done my whole life, casting a mixed-race Asian man as a full Asian character gives the audience an excuse for his attractiveness. It lets them say, “Oh, but he’s just half.” Golding’s Whiteness allows the audience to reconcile its stereotypes about Asian men with what they’re seeing on screen. The implication is that he’s attractive and masculine because he is mixed with Whiteness. The message to young men watching is that a full-Asian male is not plausible—or, perhaps, palatable—as a sexy male lead.

After the movie came out but before I saw it, a family friend whom I consider especially woke commented that I might look good with a hairstyle like Henry Golding’s in the movie. When I finally saw it, I realized I could never have hair like that. I simply didn’t inherit that particular White gene. His hair is wavy and lays neatly on his head. Mine is distinctly Asian, bristly and usually cow-licked. I make a point of putting product in my hair daily to keep it under control. That comment stung where I didn’t have Whiteness to protect me. Here was supposed to be this modern symbol of Asian masculinity, and at least one of his attractive features has nothing to do with his Asian heritage. Which other parts of Henry Golding fit into the same mold that produced Zac Efron? George Clooney? Either Hemsworth?

I’m not the first person to grumble about Henry Golding’s halfness. When Entertainment Weekly asked him to respond, Golding said, “I was chosen because I came as close to the character as possible” Except that’s not true. Nick Young’s father and mother were Chinese, both in the book and the movie.“Where are the boundaries? Where are the lines drawn for saying that you cannot play this character because you’re not fully Asian?” Golding asked. His question was rhetorical but—at least for this movie—the answer is obvious: two Asian parents just like the character was written. If we want to stop running away from being Asian, we need to stop casting actors with distinctly White characteristics. Our eyes are slanted. Our hair is straight. We are Asian and beautiful.


ech8vm@virginia.edu

The Daily Grind: MyLab Coffee Reviewed

Winnie McBride ‘19
Daniel Grill ‘19
Guest Reviewers



Whether you’re a 1L burning the midnight oil or a 3L trying to make it through your first class at noon, the coffee machines in MyLab are central to life at the Law School. This year, students were welcomed back to the library by two new coffee machines. The new Encore 29 machines offer a wider variety of coffee drinks, including cappuccinos and café lattes, than the old Keurig machines and have the added bonus of interactive screens. The new machines are also more environmentally friendly as they do not require the use of plastic K-cups (#savetheturtles). However, the ultimate measure of a coffee machine is the quality of its coffee and the time it takes to make each cup.

3L students, Daniel “What’s the Difference Between a Latte and a Cappuccino” Grill ’19 and Winnie “My Shenandoah Joe’s Order is Over $6” McBride’19, have provided a guide to the timing and flavor of the new coffee drinks.[1] Winnie is a renowned reviewer of coffee and all things luxury. Daniel, on the other hand, has a less discerning coffee palette. He does not mind the taste of K-Cups and typically drinks his coffee black.

The authors, pictured mid-tasting. On the left Daniel Grill on the right Winnie McBride (both ‘19).

The authors, pictured mid-tasting. On the left Daniel Grill on the right Winnie McBride (both ‘19).

1) House Blend (Time to prepare: 0:57): This was a decent dark roast coffee. Winnie detected a note of nail polish remover. It is not the best, but a good everyday coffee if you hate life and need something to get yourself through the day.

2) Major Dickason’s Blend (Time to prepare: 1:01): Winnie was quick to recognize a nutty flavor and thought it tasted similar to house blend. Daniel liked it but it was so hot he spit it out. He felt like the flavor was so strong it hit him across the face.

3) Segafredo Vivace (Time to prepare: 1:03): Daniel found the taste bitter and thin, but a less acidic aftertaste than other blends. Also, who is Segafredo Vivace?

4) 50/50 (Time to prepare: 0:59): This was the best of the straight-up coffees. It packed a punch despite being only half caffeinated.

5) Hot Chocolate (Time to prepare: 0:12): This was better than Swiss Miss hot chocolate. It was less sweet than expected and very tasty! We kept drinking the hot chocolate between the other drinks.

6) Mokachino (Time to prepare: 0:43): This drink was solid and we would recommend it if you like chocolate.

7) French Vanilla (Time to prepare: 0:41): THE RIGHT COFFEE MACHINE GAVE US HOT WATER INSTEAD OF FRENCH VANILLA! Once we got the drink from the left machine, it was a bit frothy and tasted like burnt sugar.

8) Vanilla Choco (Time to prepare: 0:59): VERY watered-down hot chocolate without the lasting taste of chocolate.

9) Vanilla Coffee (Time to prepare: 0:46): BEST COFFEE FLAVOR! We couldn’t really taste the artificial vanilla flavor. The drink was full-bodied without an after taste. A must try!

10) Vanilla Choco Coffee (Time to prepare: 0:44): This drink was unremarkable and forgettable.

11) Café Latte (Time to prepare: 0:48): Neither of us liked this drink. It was bitter with citrusy notes.

12) Cappuccino (Time to prepare: 0:44): This was an overall solid drink. It was kind of bitter, but good enough to take the place of purchasing a cappuccino from a café every once in a while.

13) Choco Latte (Time to prepare: 0:14): This drink was similar to hot chocolate, but less good.

14) Vanilla Choco Latte (Time to prepare: 0:14): This drink was gross and should be avoided. It tasted like melted Swiss Miss marshmallows.

15) Hot Water (Time to prepare: 0:09): There’s a reason this is the most popular drink on the machine. The water was hot.

In conclusion, the new machines make some coffee drinks very well, and some not so well. Our favorite was the Vanilla Coffee (not to be confused with the French Vanilla). We are a bit concerned with the time it takes to prepare each cup, as the traditional coffee blends take about one minute to brew. We will continue to monitor the line for the coffee machine as the semester continues and stay tuned for next week’s review: Left or Right: The Battle of the Coffee Machines.


[1] All coffees were 8 ounces and consumed black and at middle strength. Palette was cleansed in between drinks with Goldfish and Miss Vickie’s Salt and Vinny Chips.


dkg5rd@virginia.edu

wrm6bh@virginia.edu

Supplemental Reading

Madison Bush ’18
Guest Contributor

We all dread the search for the perfect supplement—whether fighting for the library reserve copy of a suggested text or hunting through the piles of hornbooks at the PILA Book Sale. Similarly, finding the perfect novel, while certainly more enjoyable, can be equally frustrating. Most law students love reading (or don’t and maybe should have thought the law school thing through a little better), but are too overcommitted and under-caffeinated to choose a book, much less read it. In this column, I’ll do the work for you, giving you that perfect title which will float around at the bottom of your to-read pile, waiting for the magical day when you find yourself with the elusive creature called free time. Reading this review is a short investment, which you can walk away from at the end (unlike your journal—good luck 1L’s).   

In a world of self-help books, hobby blogs and fake news, I am happy to see the growth of the online literary magazine.  The publishing world offers few paths for writers, and traditional publishing has killed as many careers as it creates. Meanwhile, the online self-publishing industry opened the floodgates for authors who could not get their work past the to-read pile of an editor’s desk. Of course, that is not always a good thing.  Editors are important and without them many works appear in an immature, unpolished form. Literary journals strike the happy medium between the stringent world of traditional publishing and the free-for-all of self-publishing—offering new writers and new editors room to grow. 

he Kava plant. Photo courtesy buykavadirect.com

he Kava plant.
Photo courtesy buykavadirect.com

Rumble Fish is a brand-new online literary magazine edited by Katie Sions, a University of Virginia graduate who puts her English degree to good use in this clever, curated collection of short fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and art.  The clean WordPress site—evergreen and cranberry, with a swampy cover photo—beckons visitors to enter a literary realm, one replete with (perhaps unintentionally) strong ties to Virginia.  The debut Winter 2017 Issue contains two poems, two short fictions and one non-fiction reflection, in addition to four black-and-white original drawings. The drawings complement the works, ranging from a cartoonish rat to an exercise in shading, followed by a pair of lovely cardinals and ending with a satellite tower, of all things. The Editor’s Note sets off the issue, an exuberant introduction disguised as a thoroughbred race (Editor’s Note, an actual horse, won the Belmont Stakes in 1996). 

The two short fictions are both contemporary pieces with the dark, pastoral flair of the Southern Gothic style of Faulkner and O’Connor. In “Routine Maintenance,” life, death, and rats intermingle.  Two men, Teddy and Isaiah, try to solve a rat problem they created in the first place. The delicate imagery of pet rats, rat poison, and a pregnant sister contribute to the reader’s unease, which carries the story through to a suitably uncertain end. “Appomattox, VA,” falls deeper into heavy themes, introducing us to a first-person narrator, “Winnie,” who spits and smokes and is “the meanest 19 year old” one will know. Readers familiar with old farmhouses and muddy creek beds will easily tromp along with Winnie and Andrew, all the way to a pair of hidden plastic chairs. Grief, growth, and poverty complete the portrait of life in one of the world’s small corners. 

Both poems complement the themes introduced by the short fictions. “Kava Kava” somehow manages to be insufferably hipster and wonderfully honest in fifteen short lines. Kava is a plant grown throughout the Pacific Islands, used traditionally by Pacific Ocean cultures for its medicinal properties. The poem captures the constant American hunt for new fads—a trend which creates cultural appropriation in its wake—while still celebrating the search for new experience. The Winter 2017 Issue ends with David Kunkel’s poem, “Dr. Frock Lectures a Company,” a thought experiment that overlays imagery with scientific formula, in a whimsical theory of grad student existence. 

Of all the pieces, however, I was most struck by B. Wilder’s “This is Me,” a non-fiction reflection on the struggles of living with bipolar disorder. “This is Me” takes the reader along with the author’s journey of self-discovery and self-acceptance, traveling through Hawaii, South America, and Australia, on a series of backpacking adventures, misadventures, and workplace friendships. Some people in the author’s shoes may have been satisfied with learning to cope with bipolar disorder, but B. Wilder shows us how to thrive. 

Rumble Fish hits its mark with this debut issue. Like any first effort, there is room for improvement, from the overly metaphoric editor’s note to the scattered rhombuses filling the empty space. Despite a slight immaturity, however, the twenty-seven pages of the Winter Issue are amazingly balanced and coherent, carving out a place for young authors (with strong ties to Virginia) to celebrate and lament modern America through poetry, fiction, and artistic expression.  

You can find Rumble Fish here: https://rumblefishblog.wordpress.com/

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mcb4za@virginia.edu

Finding the Best of the Worst Part 2: Rock the Kasbah

Nick Rutigliano ’18
Guest Columnist

I was having a very enjoyable Sunday. I spent most of the unseasonably idyllic seventy-degree afternoon with some good friends in Gordonsville, VA eating approximately ten pounds of barbecue at The Barbecue Exchange’s Seventh Annual Porkapolooza. I went bowling afterwards, and I even managed to roll better than my decidedly mediocre and inconsistent standard. I knew that I would have to sit through some pretty awful films during this little experiment of mine (reminder, I am only watching/reviewing movies on Netflix with a 20% or lower rating on Rotten Tomatoes). Regardless, I wanted to end this otherwise pleasant Sunday on a good note. This week, I really wanted to find a diamond in the rough. Rock the Kasbah (2015) seemed like it could have some potential, despite its 9% critic score. I also vaguely remembered seeing a preview for it at some point with Bill Murray singing “Smoke on the Water,” and that made me chuckle. With Murray as the lead actor and Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, and Danny McBride having prominent roles, I thought there was a decent chance that maybe – just maybe – the critics got this one wrong.

Bill Murray ‘s smug mug can’t salvage this rotten tomato. Photo courtesywww.splendid-film.de

Bill Murray ‘s smug mug can’t salvage this rotten tomato.
Photo courtesywww.splendid-film.de

Nope. The critics were right. This movie is terrible. 

Bill Murray plays Richie Lanz, an aging and failing music talent representative that lands an opportunity to take one of his singers, Ronnie (Deschanel), on a USO tour in Afghanistan. Ronnie is less than pleased with the plan. Shortly after arriving, Ronnie takes Richie’s money and passport and flees the country, and thus Deschanel is also to escape this movie early on. Richie then gets tangled up with international arms dealers (Scott Caan and Danny McBride) and agrees to help them out so he can get money and a passport. This leads him to discover that a young Pashtun girl in a village has a beautiful singing voice, and Richie then devotes his efforts and helping her win Afghan Star – Afghanistan’s version of American Idol. Oh, and along the way he meets a prostitute (Hudson) and mercenary (Willis) that both help and hurt his quest in various ways. 

If that summary made it seem like the movie was disjointed, well, it was. There were way too many moving parts, way too few laughs, and a futile attempt at sentimentality in the last half hour of the film. That being said, there were a few highlights. The soundtrack is great, despite not actually including the song “Rock the Casbah” or anything else by The Clash. Bob Dylan, Cat Stevens, and others provide a nice classic rock sampling, and renditions of their songs by Murray, Deschanel, and Leem Lubany were fun to hear. Speaking of Lubany, she turned in, by far, the strongest performance of the film. Lubany plays Salima Khan – the young girl attempting to break cultural and gender norms by appearing on Afghan Star. She was phenomenal, but was introduced far too late and not featured nearly enough. Her appearance on Afghan Star was ostensibly meant to be the focus of the plot, but the film meanders through strange subplots and side stories for the first half of film. As a result, Lubany’s character’s story feels like a rushed afterthought, despite it being the only captivating element. 

Ultimately, the lack of focus throughout the first half of the film is what does the film in. I just didn’t care about what was going on. Murray provides a characteristic deadpan performance that is sporadically effective for comedic effect, but also renders him a completely unsympathetic character. The guy is literally stranded in Afghanistan with no money or passport. He’s inexplicably apathetic through most of the weird developments prior to meeting Salima. It just wasn’t entertaining, and I found it incredibly difficult to pay attention. It might have been because I was still busy digesting all of that sweet, sweet barbecue from Porkopolooza, but I digress.

This film isn’t exciting enough to be an action movie and it isn’t funny enough to be a comedy. But worst of all, the actual portion of the plot dedicated to Salima and her attempt to win Afghan Star is too rushed and undeveloped to save the rest of the convoluted but uninteresting story. This isn’t like Yoga Hosers (my first reviewed film) where you could go in with low expectations and get some cheap laughs. All in all, not a great end to an otherwise great Sunday. That being said, nothing could have fully ruined the experience of Porkopolooza. Maybe I should have just written about that instead. 

Tomatometer: 9%
Audience Score: 28%
Nick Score: I guess I’ll just go with 9% as well. 

Nick can be reached at

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mnr3a@virginia.edu

Finding the Best of the Worst Part 1: Yoga Hosers

Nick Rutigliano '18
Guest Columnist

Lily-Rose Depp and Harley Smith, stars of Yoga HosersPhoto courtesy ofimdb.com

Lily-Rose Depp and Harley Smith, stars of Yoga HosersPhoto courtesy ofimdb.com

Each week I’ll be diving deep into the depths of Netflix and reviewing a movie that has a 20% or less rating on Rotten Tomatoes. To kick things off, I watched Yoga Hosers, a 2016 film that has already slipped into obscurity. This movie seemed like a natural place to start. The title itself is pretty ridiculous (“hoser” is a Canadian slang term that roughly means “loser” or “idiot”) and the premise is so nonsensical that it had to be that way by design. In a nutshell, two Canadian teenagers find themselves relying on their yoga training to defend themselves after the convenience store in which they both work is overtaken by genetically-engineered Nazi monsters made out of bratwurst. But, hey, I figured that this could be a Sharknado-type deal where the movie was so bad and ridiculous that it was kind of....good. 

But here’s the kicker – this is a Kevin Smith movie. Clerks is an all-time favorite, and if anyone can make a funny movie out of something absurd, Kevin Smith would be that guy. I mean, the guy basically made a name for himself by following exactly that model. And then I took a look at the cast. Johnny Depp, Justin Long, and Tony Hale (Buster from Arrested Development) have minor but visible roles in this movie. They essentially save the first half of the movie from being utterly unwatchable. Stan Lee also makes a cameo for some reason. So I fired up Netflix with a little bit of hope that Smith and a decent supporting cast could maybe salvage what should have been, by all other accounts, just an unadulterated disaster. 

There was really nothing redeeming in the first half of the movie. We meet Colleen Collette (Lily-Rose Depp) and Colleen McKenzie (Harley Quinn Smith), the aforementioned “yoga hosers.” They’re best friends and work together in the Eh-2-Zed convenience store in between their yoga sessions with Yogi Bayer (Justin Long). The first act really crawls along as we see how the Colleens navigate their high-school lives in Manitoba. The biggest problem was that I really couldn’t understand what this movie was “going for” for the first forty minutes or so. Obviously it was never meant to be a serious movie, but I wasn’t sure if we were supposed to get our laughs through jokes and situational humor (a la Clerks) or through Yoga Hosers functioning as a type of meta-satire. For instance, each actor’s Canadian “accent” is pretty much just their typical accents while throwing in “ah-boot” and “sore-ee.” I guess it could have been funny if they were meant to be that bad. But it wasn’t obvious that was the intention…or if the movie was just poorly acted. It all kind of missed the mark. 

Eventually Guy Lapointe (Johnny Deep) tells the girls about a mysterious death in town (I’ll spare the details), and from this point on the movie actually starts to border on being okay. Spoiler alert, I guess? The girls get called in to work at the convenience store, one thing leads to another, and soon they’re wielding hockey sticks and fighting off miniature cloned Nazi bratwurst monsters. At this point it was obvious enough that Smith was going for a “so bad it’s good” vibe. The combat scenes are ridiculous, the dialogue is contrived, the on-screen graphics and music get louder, but I found myself chuckling and even starting to enjoy myself. 

The movie is not laugh-out-loud funny at any point, and it still pales in comparison to Smith’s other work, but given my non-existent expectations literally as soon as I read the title, I’ll admit that it ended up being slightly better than expected. Harley Quinn Smith turns in a strong performance and has some decent comedic timing. Given that she’s only seventeen years old, she certainly seems to have a lot of potential for a promising career. Once the film stops trying to make jokes, and simply allows the audience to laugh at the film itself, it becomes much more effective. But the question then becomes, what was Kevin Smith’s purpose here? Clocking in at just over eighty minutes, and with the absolutely nonsensical plot, it never feels like a serious attempt to make a good movie. Two of the characters mention their disdain for “critics” of their work. Smith has had a contentious relationship with his critics at times throughout his career, and it seems likely that at least a portion of this film was directed to them. If he was intending to send them a message, it still seems unclear exactly what that message is. I just find it hard to believe that Smith would make what feels like a bad parody of his breakthrough hit Clerks without doing so deliberately.  

Final verdict: It’s a short movie and it isn’t good. That being said, if you’re looking for a Sharknado type experience and a few laughs, there are worse ways to spend an hour and a half of your life. But if you enjoyed Clerks, Dogma, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, this film will definitely have you wondering what’s up with Kevin Smith. 

Tomatometer: 20%
Audience Score: 39%
Nick Score: 30%

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mnr3a@virginia.edu
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1
     See Hoser, Urban Dictionary (May 5, 2007), http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hoser. 
2     So, yeah, Johnny Deppís daughter and Kevin Smithís daughter are the two lead actresses. I donít think the film industry has nepotism laws. See, e.g., The Godfather Part III, (1990). 
3      We even get an "I'm not even supposed to be here today!" so that was a nice touch. 
4     In my COMPLETELY unqualified opinion.