Vanderbilt Fails to Pay Their Dining Staff Sufficient Wages, But It’s Okay Because There’s a Giant Sriracha Bottle in Commons


By: Danielle Bernstein

Who isn’t completely overjoyed walking into Commons on a Thursday night? I know I am. The harsh fluorescent lighting, the overall dissatisfaction regarding the food… It’s Disneyland on our little college campus. Last Thursday night, there was something extra special in the Commons air. As I waited in line for something that almost resembled beef, I spotted out of the corner of my eye something I had never seen before: a comically large and obnoxious sriracha bottle. 

I could not tell you the origins of this bottle; I could not tell you why it was shielded behind the glass partition next to the first chef’s station; I could not tell you if it actually contained sriracha or the last tears of all the students who were swiftly guillotined after they came to the register with one too many sides. Its origins and contents are shrouded in mystery. All I can tell you is Vanderbilt has its priorities straight. Who knows how much that sriracha bottle costs. $10? $20? $1,000? Regardless, the money that went to that sriracha bottle was money that could have gone to a dining worker’s paycheck. See! Vanderbilt’s priorities are as straight as Young Thug. Imagine serving a bunch of ungrateful college students day in and day out, not getting treated fairly, and not getting paid sufficiently. Do you want to receive a reasonable paycheck and not be overworked? No! You want to turn to your left and see a magical and enormous bottle of sriracha as you give a spoonful of powdered eggs. 

Hopefully, this situation with a comically large condiment bottle isn’t just unique to Commons. Is there a giant Cholula bottle in Rand? Perhaps there’s a giant bottle of America’s favorite ketchup (Muir Glen Organic Ketchup, of course) in EBI. This addition would be the perfect remedy to all our dining hall problems! The lines in Rand would be shortened, the workers behind the counter now working at warped speed, the acai bowls in Kissam would be bigger and always the right consistency, and maybe, just maybe, the dining halls would be open past 7:30 pm.

Now, going back to that wonderful Thursday evening in Commons. After causing an impatient and violent riot behind me due to spending nearly three whole minutes staring wistfully at the sriracha bottle (did I mention it was giant?), I got my only two sides, swiped my commodore card at the register, and sat down to eat. As I took a bite of my [insert Commons entree here because they’re all interchangeable], I only had one thought in mind: “this could use some sriracha.”

  • March 1, 2022