Biebs Mashups, Free Cookies, and More Overpriced T-Shirts: The Opening of the Newest Harvard Shop

By Alana M Steinberg

In all honesty, I don’t know why we need another Harvard Shop. This marks the fourth of this same store within 2 blocks of each other. I know tourists love to collect gear, but are there really that many of them willing to buy overpriced t-shirts emblazoned with the name of this fine institution? OK, yes, maybe there are… but with all the other tourist trap apparel shops around, the market seems oversaturated, and supply must be so much higher than demand*.

Despite my reservations about the opening of yet another Harvard Shop, I am never one to turn down offers of free food and thus woke up at the absurdly early hour of 11:30am on a beautiful Saturday to let them peddle their wares to me.

By the time I got to The Harvard Shop, it was packed full of students with the same thought process. The Lowkeys performed a fun mashup of Justin Bieber songs, and I got free cookies (and coupons for more free cookies). I think I missed a whole collection of coupons for other restaurants in the square, but I mostly only eat cookies for every meal, so that wasn’t a huge concern.

To my surprise, HSA’s grand opening was a really fun event and an example of what Harvard should be doing for inclusive social spaces (UC, take notes). Any party that has cookies and Biebs mashups is the kind of party I want to be at. I can’t imagine that I will be returning to the newest Harvard Shop to spend my own money, but I am not opposed in any way to eating their free food or enjoying the fun of a grand opening.

*Does using the few economics terms I remember from Ec10 make this a legitimate criticism? Maybe. Am I going to continue to use words from the natural and social sciences to sound like I understand anything other than literature? Definitely.

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