Dear Ratsie’s

Dear Ratsie’s,

It seems the time has befallen us. A moment University of Maryland students dating back to the 90’s have come to dread because if there was ever a pizzeria catered to college students, it is you. The more than 30 years of service you have bestowed to all who enter your seemingly dated walls knows no other than the merit of an institution.

You felt our devotion most during the late midnight hours as we trickled in, sometimes with some much needed support, after a night out on the streets of Route 1 getting into who remembers what. We were met with a line worth waiting for because although Baltimore Avenue is greedy with pizzerias, we cannot call ourselves a true Terp without having visited you.

You are a central meeting place to reunite before heading back home: “Yeah, I’ll meet you by Ratsie’s!” because everyone know where you are. There is no recollection of good times in College Park without the mentioning of an outing to Ratsie’s, especially if it included a fight or some PDA between two strangers that met eyes under your dreary lights. The employees knew you by name and your order.

I feel sorry for future Terps who will go on without the experience of going out to catch a calzone alongside some sketchy people, but all the while melting in the fact that you knew you were capitalizing on one of Maryland’s greats. There can be no other to replace how much of a symbol you mean to the university, its students and alumni. Yes, you don’t look quite the same as we remember during the daylight’s exposure, but still—you are Ratsie’s.

For the memories, for the food, and for an icon of our college experience we will miss you.

Sincerely yours,

UMD Terps


The Saving Grace of Music (or how Barry Manilow saved my life)


I define myself by very simple terms. I am a human first, male second, and Barry Manilow fan third. These are the things that are at the core of who I am—basic things. All other affiliations—nationality, religious denomination, political party—are secondary to these primary traits. The primacy of my humanity and masculinity probably doesn’t require much explaining, but I imagine that third trait—“Barry Manilow fan”—raises a few eyebrows.

How could a person’s love for an over-the-hill pop star be at the center of who he is? To put it bluntly, I owe my existence to Barry Manilow. Now, I don’t mean that in the crude sense that my parents just happened to get busy while “Mandy” was playing in the background—though, let’s be honest, Barry does inspire animalistic lust. No, unfortunately, it’s a little darker than that.

Courtesy: Pictured: animalistic lust
Pictured: animalistic lust

I was a chubby kid in middle school. I mention this characteristic only because my peers loved to remind me that it was my defining characteristic. I was bullied, and as you might expect from the kind of kid who listens to pop stars who haven’t been relevant since the early 80’s, I didn’t really possess the social grace to properly handle this kind of treatment. I became depressed, and this eventually led me down a very dark path. I came very close to doing things I would have most certainly regretted. But I didn’t do these things. Why? Continue reading The Saving Grace of Music (or how Barry Manilow saved my life)

German Plane Deliberately Crashed in French Alps


On Tuesday, March 24, a plane en route from Barcelona, Spain to Dusseldorf, Germany, crashed in the French Alps. There were 144 passengers on the plane and six crew-members, according to CNN. No one survived.

Passengers included citizens from 18 countries, 72 of whom were from Germany and 35 who were from Spain. There were two opera singers on board, 16 students and two teachers on a class trip, a mother and daughter from Virginia, a Columbian architect, as well as many others. Continue reading German Plane Deliberately Crashed in French Alps

ABC Family Brings Back the Hilarious Hidden Camera Show, Freak Out


It’s back! ABC Family premiered the unscripted prank show Freak Out during 13 Nights of Halloween. Now, the series is back with a vengeance. The show debuts bigger scares and even bigger reactions.

In each episode, an unsuspecting person or ‘mark’ is faced with their worst fears. You’re probably wondering who would set someone up to face their fears, but the culprits are usually the ones they love the most — their friends and family. Every prank is specifically catered to turn a normal everyday situation into someone’s worst nightmare. Freak Out captures each scenario, starting from the planning of the prank, until the mark discovers their worst nightmare is nothing more than a joke. Trust me, their reactions are priceless!

What sets Freak Out apart from other prank shows, like TruTv’s Impractical Jokers, is the fear factor that Freak Out brings to television. Not only are unsuspecting marks put in funny and embarrassing situations, but they are also scared out of their minds. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a spooky twist?

Catch Freak Out at 8:30/7:30c Wednesdays on ABC Family!

UMD Students gather for #OccupyFratRow Movement


Just four months after UMD students assembled in Stamp Student Union to voice their demands to demilitarize the College Park Police Department, many returned Friday afternoon to protest on Frat Row in response to the racist and sexist email sent by a member of Kappa Sigma Fraternity.

The protest kicked off with various demands from representatives of several student organizations. Many protesters at the event believe there wasn’t enough disciplinary action served to the individual and group involved in the email which included the now infamous line, ‘f**k consent.’ Members of The Vagina Monologues performed a skit in response to that line and sexual assault.

Dante Evans/Pulsefeedz
Member from The Vagina Monologues performs part of a skit embracing sexuality and condemning sexual assault. (Jasmine Pelaez/Pulsefeedz)

Continue reading UMD Students gather for #OccupyFratRow Movement

Maryland Terrapins women’s basketball team beats Princeton in the midst of threats


Just two days after Barack Obama attended Princeton’s victory over Green Bay, the Tigers squared off against the Terps at College Park on Monday evening. The Princeton Tigers were the last undefeated team in women’s college hoops and ranked an 8 seed in this year’s tournament. Maryland, the number one seed in the Spokane bracket, hosted the first two rounds of their bracket. Following a victory against New Mexico St., Maryland’s next challenge was the undefeated Tigers. Continue reading Maryland Terrapins women’s basketball team beats Princeton in the midst of threats

Scandal Review: Put A Ring On It


Hello Gladiator friends!

I have returned from my brief hiatus, and I regret to inform you that it was caused by a terrible, non-Shonda induced illness and non-TGIT related responsibilities. I wish that I was away on Scandal business but some dreams don’t come true. Le sigh.  Anywho, I’m cured and back better than ever with more hi-jinks and straight foolishness created by our beloved Shonda Rhimes.

I didn’t get a chance to tweet Shonda this week, but next week, it’s on. You have been fairly warned.

Let’s get into it!

Continue reading Scandal Review: Put A Ring On It

The Caribbean Student Association honors tradition with J’ouvert


At the University of Maryland, the Caribbean Student Association holds an annual J’ouvert on McKeldin Mall as a celebration of the history of Caribbean people. For the first time, J’ouvert will be held on two days. On April 10th, students can attend a glow in the dark party with UV paint and dance with traditional colored powder the following day.

Continue reading The Caribbean Student Association honors tradition with J’ouvert

Shaping UMD’s Future Through Community Sessions

Attendees of the first Community Visions session talk to one another about what Maryland can do to improve. (Photos by: Jasmine Pelaez)


In the Stamp Atrium, full of students, faculty and staff, the first session in addressing a strategic plan to improve UMD as a campus came to life.

Last February, President Loh announced the formation of a Flagship 2020 Commission to answer challenges of higher education. On Wednesday, members of the campus community joined together and stepped in to help this process. The plans these members will create aim to provide more appealing and competitive university by the year 2020. Continue reading Shaping UMD’s Future Through Community Sessions

Reasons That You Gotta be at Firefly 2015 (in no particular order)


Where I’m from in Massachusetts, few people, to my knowledge, have ever heard of the Firefly Music Festival. It started one July weekend in 2012, and this summer will once again be at the Woodland’s of the Dover International Speedway in Delaware, and it is sure to be phenomenal.

Though I’ve never been to a music festival, I like few things more than I do live music, and could not be any more excited for Thursday, June 18th when the journey will begin. But like most other college students, throwing down hundreds of dollars on anything is a very difficult thing to do, and you have to make sure it’s worth it. So that’s why I’ve written 10 good reasons that you have to be at Firefly this summer.

This list is in no particular order:

  1. Paul McCartney is a Beatle

The Beatles to music are, in my opinion, beyond anybody or anything else in any other industry. Paul McCartney is the face of the Beatles – if you could ever say there is one – and will be on-stage Friday night singing to what I imagine will be the biggest crowd of the entire festival. And not only that, but he is going to perform Beatles songs. There is not a single old dude in music that I’d rather see than Sir Paul McCartney, and I think, after seeing his show, you will probably agree.

  1. Mad Terps will be there

Like I said, no talk of Firefly in Boston. But I’ve heard a lot of talk about the festival in College Park, and I know at least 20 people that are going to be there in June. I look forward to a lot of Terp-Pride in Dover and I know we’ll be repping the hardest.


Continue reading Reasons That You Gotta be at Firefly 2015 (in no particular order)