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Revisit JJ’s Place Without Regaining The Freshman 15


Charlie White
Besides the students and faculty, there are many other members of both the Columbia and Morningside communities who make the years here a little more enjoyable. We at Bwog feel they deserve a little time in the spotlight for all their hard work. Today: Jared Frieder feels nostalgic, and asks Charlie White of JJ’s Place what his favorite Michael Jackson song is

What do strawberries, Austin Powers, and Paris have in common? I’m not exactly sure, but Charles White could be it. Charlie is a Brooklyn-bred New Yorker who first came to work at JJ’s Place in 1996 after his mom helped him score a position behind the sandwich counter. The strangest order he’s come across in those 13 years? A so-called vegetarian once ordered a Veggie-Chicken Burger.

When not watching his favorite movies, the Austin Powers Trilogy, Charles can be seen rooting on his favorite team, the Buffalo Bills. In fact, if he couldn’t serve up mozzarella sticks at 2 AM, the only other job that would satisfy Charles would be playing tailback for the Buffalo Bills. Fittingly, his JJ’s delicacy of choice is the Buffalo Chicken Wrap.

Yet, fret not, if he had to live his life as a food, Charlie would rather turn himself into a succulent strawberry than a spicy buffalo wing. Charlie is not only a JJ’s man, but also a family man, as he boasts that his favorite thing in the past decade has been getting married and starting a family – six kids: Ceron, age 6, Natasha, age 4, and Thomasina, age 9, just to name a few. While his celebrity crush is Halle Berry, his true love is his wife: his ideal vacation would be taking her to Paris and treating her “like the queen she is.”

When it comes to a subject Columbia students know all too well — books — Charlie loves to read anything by Donald Goines, author of the “book-gone-movie” Never Die Alone. But when the books are closed and it’s time for some basketball, Charlie enjoys watching his favorite player and five-time NBA All-Star Dwayne Wade of the Miami Heat take to the courts. As for Charlie’s response to the most important question anyone can ever answer, his favorite Michael Jackson song is undoubtedly “Beat It.”

When asked if he had any advice for the stressed-out students he sees in the midst of a long night studying, White says, “don’t let the pressure get to you, keep your head up, and do the best you can.” It’s no surprise that he says that his coworkers and the students are the best part of working at JJ’s. His one request of the kids: keep coming. As long as he keeps smiling, we’ll keep coming.

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27 Comments

  • thats my says:

    @thats my ni*ga, congrats, so much a better person than joey and all of them…and not racist

  • awesome! says:

    @awesome! i LOVE this guy. he always can cheer you up when you’re stressed out at 1 a.m.

  • Harmony Hunter says:

    @Harmony Hunter is jj’s close by?

  • why says:

    @why why is the font so messed up?

  • where is the says:

    @where is the hot water in EC

  • this guy says:

    @this guy is the best. so much of the help at Columbia is mean and distant, but Charlie and the other people in JJ’s Place are a breath of fresh air.

    1. except says:

      @except the woman at the register. she is rude.

      1. but really says:

        @but really which would you rather have? the rude lady, or the creepy guy who was fired because he kept hitting on freshman boys?

        1. Patroclus says:

          @Patroclus The creepy guy. When I order a late-night hot dog, it is purely a euphemism.

        2. Mac says:

          @Mac How come he never molested me?

          1. this says:

            @this made me smile. nice reference.

  • charlie is says:

    @charlie is awesome.

  • hahah says:

    @hahah ya that lady needs to be fired, she dropped my ID card once behind the register and instead of getting off her ass, made me come around and pick it up for her to swipe

  • woo says:

    @woo love this series! do Wilma next!

    also, don’t knock Iris. She’s harsh, but she dispenses solid advice. Come end of the year, she’ll be warning you to spend more of your non-rollover first year points lest you lose them forever (or has dining services ditched that pahtetic money grabbing rule)

    1. Iris says:

      @Iris has never dispensed anything to me other than poor customer service.

  • yikes says:

    @yikes is it just my Columbia-bred hyper-pc radar, or is it kinda awkward that his job description is jauntily summarized as “serving mozzarella sticks at 2 AM”

    also awkward: boat as a verb in the 4 paragraph.

    1. Oh, says:

      @Oh, shut up.

  • Alumnus says:

    @Alumnus Charlie is a beast. I love that guy.

  • Maybe it's says:

    @Maybe it's because I haven’t left my dorm room in three days, but campus looks fucking beautiful right now

  • ALERT says:

    @ALERT Chatting with Charlie at JJ’s is definitely one of my best memories at Columbia. No matter how down/frustrated/drunk you were, a “what’s up, man?” would be coming your way…

    That, and he didn’t mind me ordering mozz sticks with blue cheese dressing…heart attack, I know

  • charlie says:

    @charlie is a true g. gettin high and goin to JJs is basically how i spent my freshman year nights

  • stoned says:

    @stoned at jj’s is the best thing in the world.

    1. hahaha says:

      @hahaha so true, so true.

  • Freshman 15 says:

    @Freshman 15 Not from JJ’s…bc JJ’s is not where alchohol’s from…

  • Rupert from JJ's says:

    @Rupert from JJ's needs some love too. Even offered me a place to stay if I ever decided to visit Costa Rica.

    1. Rupert says:

      @Rupert really needs some love because he’s still having medical problems from when he fell Spring ’08. That is why Iris replaced him. He’s one of the nicest people I’ve met at Columbia, and yet he was treated horribly. I sat with him in the ER and helped with the work-injury paperwork because the JJs boss at the time was trying to escape blame for taking away the mat under the chair, which had been preventing slippage up until that point. Those guys really are the best though–Alfonso also always has something nice to say whenever I make a rare appearance these days.

  • Freshman? says:

    @Freshman? this is very poorly written. Bwog… how about some respect for Charlie, this looks like it was written by a prospective student.

    (nice weak ass ‘grabber’ noob)

    yes i can do better.

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