16 Reasons Fairfield University's Tully Dining Commons Confuse Me

16 Reasons Fairfield University's Tully Dining Commons Confuse Me

A glass jar of pickles is always a great decoration, right?

Fairfield’s new dining hall is absolutely gorgeous, and is definitely an upgrade from the dining tent that we ate in for about two months last semester.

It is also an upgrade from our beloved Barone Dining Room, but I think that I speak for Stags everywhere when I say that there are some unanswered questions, some things that don’t quite make sense about our big new upgrade.

1. The chairs

Those new light blue and gray chairs are great to sit in when you’re eating, but for some reason you can’t wander the Tully without tripping over one of their long metal support rods that hold them up, leading to almost dropping your full plate of food.

2. Why does the soft serve machine NEVER work?

After a long day, I look forward to a full cup of twist soft serve ice cream with caramel and Hershey’s chocolate syrup. Nothing is worse than looking forward to a cup of ice cream and walking over to the machine to see that the handles are taken off.

3. Why is the pizza so far off to the side away from everything else?

It is cool to go over to the new pizza and pasta section to watch the pizza being cooked, but sometimes people forget that it’s there.

4. Why is food used as decorations?

A glass jar of pickles is always a great decoration, right?

5. Why are there such exotic flavors of infused water?

I speak for some people, myself included, when I say lemon, lime and orange are good contenders to spice up the water game, but lychee water?

6. Speaking of water, why is there never water in the four extremely large water holders?

There's always ice, though, so that's a plus.

7. Still speaking of drinks, why is there never a proportionate amount of cups around all the drink stations of the dining hall?

Having to walk across the dining hall just for a cup when you’re tired and hungry is not a good mix. Point made.

8. Why do the waffles say "Tully" in the middle?

It is cool, and rather boujee might I add, but why the waffles? Only Fairfield!

9. Why is there no waffle mix to go with the waffle maker in the Allergy Suite?

What am I supposed to do with the waffle maker if there’s no batter?

10. The conveyor belt

The new conveyor belt is so aesthetically pleasing, but it moves so darn slow and there is not enough room for everyone to put their cups, bowls and plates on. In Barone, it was a drop-and-go situation. In the Tully, putting dishes away is more strategic, like a puzzle. You have to figure out a way that all of your dirty dishes can fit in the little wet metal box without falling mid-motion. At least the utenisils don’t have to be separated!

11. Why is there always such a long line for the main dish section in the back?

The line doesn’t even move! It is where the main dish of the night is, usually things like cheeseburgers, fries and chicken nuggets. When people are ready to grab food, they head right there without even knowing what is there. The line always extends all the way back to the salad bar, and sometimes people don’t even see anything they like when they get up there, so they just wasted their time waiting for something they didn’t even want.

12. The balsamic vinegar only sometimes makes an appearance.

Nothing against you, red wine vinegar, but I just prefer balsamic vinegar on my salad. To me, it has a better, richer taste and I wish that I had that option every day.

13. Cheese rotation?

You never know what cheeses will be available to put your salad, but sometimes there are options like cottage cheese and the hard shaved parmesan. I prefer the shaved cheddar with my balsamic vinegar and oil, but blue cheese crumbles always being available makes it all OK.

14. There's never the option of regular popcorn chicken for your salad at the salad toss station.

That is a request that I got when I mentioned writing this article. Not everyone likes buffalo chicken. Why can’t the chicken before the buffalo sauce be an option?

15. How do the bananas go brown so darn fast?

It took me a full two weeks to find where the bananas even were (by the ice cream of course), and when I went to get one, most were brown, so I took a yellow one. It was tossed when mushy banana stuff came out from under the peel when I went to eat it.

16. Bakery case is display only.

Of course. Everyone’s favorite section of the Tully, the desserts. The desserts in the Tully look and taste so much better than the desserts in Barone, but the worst is looking at a delicious cake that you can’t even snag a piece of. Display only.

**Disclaimer: This article was not meant to offend anyone or make fun of Fairfield's new dining facility; it was simply written for fun.

Cover Image Credit: Twitter/Fairfield U

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.

Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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Sweet Potatoes Are The Most Underrated Vegetable Of All Time

Everything you need to know about the pieces of edible gold we call "sweet potatoes" and why they will always perish over any plain old potato.


The potato. The heart of the American food industry. A versatile vegetable crop soaked in grease that brings us some of our favorite appetizers and sides. From french fries, to curly fries, to tater tots, to baked potatoes, to hash browns, this hallowed vegetable has become the Johnny Depp of the vegetable family. Now, we are all aware that the configurations of potatoes are limitless, but we commonly disregard the potato's delicious and neglected brother: the sweet potato. I, a credible food connoisseur and highly experienced eater, am here to tell you why you are missing out on a world of flavor if you choose to dismiss the beloved sweet potato and its many entities.

Let me first start this tirade by proving to you my credibility...I, too, once believed that regular french fries were better than sweet potato fries. I scoffed at the idea of choosing those ridiculous orange sticks over my tried-and-true plain boys. I could not be convinced that any sweetness should impede on my savory snacks.

These were dark times.

It was not until a mere month ago that my mind was changed forever.

It was a sunny (scary) Sunday morning, and my pounding head led me on a mission to indulge myself in the finest breakfast foods. I entered my favorite breakfast diner, Angelo's, and waited anxiously for my waiter to stroll over. She filled our water cups and asked if we wanted to start with any appetizers. Before my stingy self could even decline the offer, my best friend ordered a round of sweet potato fries for the table and the waiter scurried away. I stared blankly at her for a solid minute. I could not wrap my head around the concept of munching on sweet potato fries at 8 in the morning. She just stared back and said, "Trust me." Suddenly, a tray of blood orange sticks and a mysterious tan sauce appeared in front of my face. As much as I wanted to ponder the morality of this decision, the hunger began to take over, and I shoved one of the fries into my mouth.

In an instant, it was as if time and space had lost all meaning. When my teeth hit the fry, the perfectly crusted outer shell crunched softly making a sound much like your foot crushing a dried leaf. The now exposed inside of the fry was the perfect blend of mush and warmth that felt like your mouth was receiving a hug. The flavor...unbelievable. It didn't take me long to realize that this wasn't a fry — this was a culinary experience. This fry single-handedly blew the roof off of any predisposed ideas I had about American cuisine.

I am well aware that my fry experience cannot be simulated again by any average food-goer, but I challenge you, the reader of this article, to get out there and enjoy a sweet potato in any form. Stray from your basic fries or tater tots and dabble in a sweet treat which will undoubtedly bring you flavorful satisfaction.

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