NEW HAVEN, CT — After a marathon writing session Wednesday night, freshman Joshua Winters reportedly put the finishing touches on his latest YDN column, a “masterpiece” that perfectly reconciled his desire for recognition with his need for praise. After “totally forgetting about signing up for this one,” Winters faced a time crunch to meet the midnight deadline, and knew that whatever he submitted might not be his best work. Unable to forego an opportunity for attention, however, Josh buckled down and produced something both he and himself could be proud of. “Producing nothing would not only have been a disservice to my peers, it would have been a disservice to me,” said Winters, basking in the hollow glow of his Macbook Pro.

His greatest struggle, he said, was choosing a topic that would allow him to simultaneously garner recognition and sound profoundly intellectual. He steered away from polarizing topics that would jeopardize his “almost universal popularity,” electing instead to address his “relationship to party culture, and how I approve of it. Or disapprove of it, I don’t completely remember.”

Winters is a veteran opinion writer, having written extensively for his “really good” high school newspaper and personal blog, “The Polemical Pryor.” But even the most seasoned columnists have doubts: “I mean, occasionally I worry that I won’t have something new and interesting to say,” says Winters with that smug little smirk of his. “But then I realize that no matter what I say, at least people have heard me, and that’s really what’s important. So I buckle down, pound out exactly 650 words and call it a night. I can rest easy knowing I’ve done my small part to make Yale a better community for myself.”

“Josh’s greatest asset is his lack of a filter,” said YDN Editor in Chief Grant Campbell. “He is never afraid to share his opinion, even if that opinion doesn’t need to be heard,” recalling a piece in which Winters shared his thoughts on how great Gothic architecture is. “As long as there’s the promise of attention, Josh is producing content, and that’s really invaluable to a publication that has a lot of space to fill and not a lot of time to fill it.”

Suitemates say Winters was “going absolutely apeshit” Thursday morning upon realizing his column had generated over two online comments in just 9 hours.

— E. Connors