Saturday, April 17, 2010


It has always struck me as most unfair that Princeton should get tigers, whereas we got stuck with Scarlet Knights that - whatever their size - always manage to look as though they are put together from the same kind of Airfix kits with which I used to glue together model airplanes, rather messily. This is one of two rather wary beasts outside Nassau Hall, donated by the class of 1879. Not that they have been there since that date - 1879 was in fact the year in which the class got it spectacularly wrong in making their gift, since they gave two large lions to guard Nassau Hall's portals: they changed big cats for these ones, made by A. P. Proctor, in 1911.

But of course we could have had tigers here, if we hadn't slid from Dutch orange into Rutgers red. Princeton kept on with the orange - and then students started to write their class numbers on their orange ribbons with black pens - and the rest is stripy history. Red and black doesn't really produce quite the same effect (though maybe we could have had a ladybug as our emblem? Or a red and black beetle like Helluomorphoides nigripennis? A couple of these, four feet high and six feet long, might look quite fetching waving their feelers in front of Old Queens).

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