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MIT Grudge Match!

Philip Burrowes

I was very disappointed with the Subway Series. No major sports event could have been more regionally divisive, but I have yet to see any more violence than there normally is in New York. That can be attributed to any number of factors: an exodus to suburbs combined with an influx of immigrants has drastically realigned New York City away from the pre-borough system; interleague play has already shown us this matchup; baseball is just really boring.

These and causes like these aren’t unique to New York, however; America is in the midst of a nationwide all-time low in irrational jingoism. Why, Apple is copying Microsoft now! We here at MIT -- all parts of that grand microcosm of life known as the elite research institute -- are not exempt from this trend. Perhaps if we would encourage more cannibalistic competition on this campus, we could turn this nation around. Here are certain events that are long overdue.

East Parallel vs. West Parallel

Referee: President’s House

This dorm cannot stand half East and half West. Following the grand tradition of Senior House (which seceded from East Campus in 1959), the parallel best felt to represent East Campus shall retain the name, and the loser will be known as Meta House until a wealthy alum decides to buy a name.

Ashdown vs. McCormick

Referee: MacGregor

The more hotel-like dorm maintains culinary autonomy from Aramark, while the losers must eat at Baker Dining. It might seem lopsided, given Ashdown’s actual residence history, but since I’ve never gotten above the first floor of either, I wouldn’t really know. (I would, of course, suggest MacGregor not count the Annex against McCormick).

The Tech vs. Tech Talk

Referee: The Thistle

This is blatant copycatting the likes of which I haven’t seen since MTV’s Fear (which gets extra points for being both Survivor and Blair Witch). We’re older and larger. Still, they are able to maintain some sort of semblance of professionalism, as well as an extensive want-ad section. The periodical judged more newspaper-like must produce a consistent sports section as its reward.

SIPB vs. Nightline

Referee: A random advisor

For the gosh-darn nicest people at MIT (and not in that scary, social Next House way), visit the Student Information Processing Board office outside W20-575. I don’t know how they know all they know, but they do. Still, you can’t toy around with them like you can with the staff at Nightline (Def Tuv Tuv Oper Oper), which seems to be trained in handling stupid questions. The nicer group get to run pre-Orientation festivities.

Eastside Cafe vs. Refresher Course

Referee: MIT Faculty Club

I know there’s a joke in here somewhere. It involved Lobdell in some way, too. Oh, well, perhaps I should have gone with the Tang vs. Tang joke.

FS vs. ILG

Referee: Class of ’02

What -- independent living groups think they’re so great because people don’t see them as dens of iniquity? What -- fraternities think they’re so great because they’re part of a nationwide network of cabals organized as our last defense against the Illuminati? I don’t care, but they both pay less than I do, and I’m in a single with someone else, so I’m bitter. The more dorm-like system will be used to house the growing population of MIT students who have graduated but still hang around.

Bill Gates vs. Aramark

Referee: The Objectivist quote in the Room of Anti-Thought

Beyond mere monopolization, which force is the greater evil? Gates participates in relatively inconsequential philanthropy while simultaneously undermining the faux-free enterprise system Americans hold so dear. Aramark, while providing us sustenance, saps our funds, partitions us according to location leading to increased polarization (wait, wasn’t that the point of this article?), and burns chicken. The lesser of two evils has its buildings renamed by whoever came up with the name “New House.”

I sense you cannot contain your enthusiasm over these exciting matchups. Well, I’m sorry to say they’re not going to happen. It’s still good to see you want more competition in your life. Come Election Day, vote for George W. Bush, and he’ll make sure our armies stay strong so if competition does come, we’ll be up to the task. In the meantime, relax, attend a few protests, and enjoy the enclave of equanimity that is MIT.