This week is all about Caroline Calloway. Yes, there were Democratic debates last night, but two evenings prior The Cut published a personal essay from Calloway’s former friend and collaborator Natalie Beach that spawned tweets and explainers and takes that have actually made Caroline Calloway into the famous influencer she purported to be all along.
Beach’s personal essay details the rise and dissolution of their relationship as best friends and Instagram caption collaborators. As Vox put it in their explainer (a must-read if none of this is making sense so far), the essay brought “a deeply human element” to the Caroline Calloway story, which had gone viral earlier this year thanks to Calloway’s Fyre Fest-esque “tour.”
Beach’s essay includes many fascinating, food-related details. Among the most curious anecdotes, Beach recounts the time she regaled her friend with the imagined movie of her life “between bites of lettuce wraps” at Minetta Tavern. Has Minetta Tavern ever served lettuce wraps?? was the question much of food-world Twitter fixated on. (They thought not; Beach would clarify in a New York Times interview that “of course it’s possible I mixed up the exact appetizer we ate.”)
But there’s also the story of something less-restaurant focused, but certainly eating-adjacent: the Yale plates. Calloway was allegedly obsessed with Yale, after failing to get in. Beach, a self-proclaimed Yale townie, gave Calloway a set of plates stamped with the Yale crest as a gift for her 21st birthday, with a defiant “Fuck it” written on each plate in marker. According to Beach’s account, Calloway cried. Later, she claimed the plates were stolen. It was Beach’s first inkling that Calloway maybe wasn’t always totally telling the truth.
Anyway, unlike Minetta Tavern lettuce wraps (which are definitely not on the menu, at least currently), you can buy a variety of Yale plates on Etsy. In this join-the-internet-bandwagon, shameless play for Caroline Calloway clicks, we’re not saying that any of these are the exact same Yale plates. Most of them appear to be collectibles (several are listed as by Wedgewood, the once-English, once-revered china brand that printed these back in the 1930s), which means maybe those plates were really stolen after all. To complete the look, add your own sharpie “Fuck it.” At the very least, if you and your maybe-BFF, maybe-frenemy are looking for the perfect friend costume this Halloween, pounce on these now before everyone else on the internet — like with their Calloway takes — beats you to it.
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