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Bad Taste is an evening of rude, raunchy fun

CONCERT IN BAD TASTE

The MIT Chorallaries.

Room 10-250, March 16, midnight.

By BILL JACKSON

REVIEWING THE CHORALLARIES' annual Concert in Bad Taste is a worthy challenge for anyone. The nature of the concert is such that it is impossible to quote most of the lyrics in a family newspaper. The concert has become an MIT tradition, and lines formed early. When the doors finally opened, Room 10-250 quickly filled until the aisles and floors with jammed with eager fans.

The cast of characters was varied and fun this year. Two "protesters" began the concert by marching out carrying signs saying "BAD TASTE IS EVIL" and "NO BAD TASTE." They were followed with an appearance by Jim of Jim's Journal fame, who told the audience, "I went to the Chorallaries concert. It was deep. It was hard. It was fast. It was gross." Jessica Rabbit told concert-goers "I'm not in bad taste. I just sing that way." She was followed by Betty Boop, Vanilla Ice, a limbless victim of a truck accident, and a Milli Vanilli member who lip-synched a message actually voiced by a fellow Chorallary.

The group's first two songs took on ARA food service in standard fashion. When one song lyric stated "You can barf up bananas, tofu and rice," a group of obliging audience plants did just that, hurling the foodstuffs at the group. The Chorallaries threw the food right back. They then launched into a "History of Bad Taste," from Alexander Graham Bell discovering phone sex ("Watson, Watson, come check this out!") to adding an "s" to the middle name of MIT's first woman alumnus, Ellen Swallow Richards.

Next came an appearance by the Brandeis singing group, the Justones. Their very funny "Pet by Pet" song was the first of many bestiality jokes during the evening. Then the Chorallaries returned to the stage with a pile of old Techs and began reading a series of letters to the editor that have appeared complaining about a certain driveling columnist for the Tech. They even called the poor columnist in question up in front of the audience to have their fun.

While this was happening, the normally excellent Chorallaries suddenly sounded awful to this reviewer's ears. To me, their voices, normally in such fine form, suddenly didn't sound as good, and their timing was terrible. Much of their humor was falling flat as well, although something might have been affecting this reviewer's opinion. After this bit of columnist-bashing ended, however, the concert once again sounded good.

Immediately, the Chorallaries returned to top form with a song whose title I cannot print in this paper, although friendly Boston drivers greet each other with this two-word phrase every day. After a song about a "frat boy" getting a young lady drunk -- this is Bad Taste, folks -- they presented The Mating Game, in which the contestant, Frat Boy Bob, got to choose between an MIT woman, a Wellesley woman and an inflatable doll. The MIT woman, after being asked what her favorite sexual position was, wanted to know if her answer should be in "spherical or cylindrical coordinates." ("Polar!" yelled an audience member.) Inevitably, the rubber doll won the date. The show was "sponsored" by a new device for impotent males: the Reebok Pump Condom.

Suddenly -- an invasion! The Logarhythms crashed the concert to sing a couple of songs, including one which took on the Chorallaries themselves ("They look and sing like livestock/ When they sing I look at the clock.") A Chorallary dressed in military clothing attacked the Logs and forced them off the stage with his squirt gun. The Chorallaries dedicated their next few songs to the Logs, including "Zit on My Face" and a few unprintables.

The Chorallaries were on a roll: "Lose it on the Green Line," to the tune of "I Heard It Through the Grape Vine," was an interesting tale of lost virginity on public transportation. The MIT Corporation Executive Committee meeting sketch was right on target as well. Discussing the hiring of the associate provost for the arts, one character said, "Let's be broad-minded. Let's hire a broad!" The Brandeis group returned for a couple of songs, but the Justones were a bit raunchier and not as amusing as the Chorallaries. This type of humor requires a "smile when you say that" attitude, which the Chorallaries have mastered and the Brandeis group lacked.

The Chorallaries returned, and didn't miss a note, or a joke, for the rest of the show. Their version of the "12:00 News" told about "Operation Dalkon Shield" and a McCormick resident caught under the influence of drugs. "As a result," said the newscaster, "all Senior House floor tutors have been dismissed."

Their final batch of songs was the best. "Saddam's Army" was a good parody of "One Tin Soldier," "Masturbatin' Rhythm" was another dedication to the party-crashing Logs, and "The Dirty Nerdy Ugly Guy in Course 6-3" was amusing to those of us who aren't course 6-3. They closed with the classic "Engineer's Drinking Song," complete with raunchier lyrics and Chorallaries alumni joining in.

The concert was a lot of fun, worth waiting in line for, and worth squeezing into Room 10-250 for. If you missed this year's Concert in Bad Taste, make sure to line up early next year and leave your easily offended sensibilities at home.