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A Truly Great Prank

(First, credit where it is due: I heard about this incident on the NPR show, "Wait wait... don't tell me!")

The Harvard-Yale rivalry is one that goes back centuries, and always comes to the fore during the annual football game. This year, during the game, students in bright red "HARVARD PEP SQUAD" handed out red and white squares to Harvard fans, with instructions to hold them up on cue so they could spell out "GO HARVARD" in big red letters during the game. It's a common occurance at sporting events.

Only this time there were a few complications.

1) There is no "HARVARD PEP SQUAD."

2) There were numerous people on the Yale side armed with cameras to capture the results for posterity.

3) When held up, the signs didn't spell out "GO HARVARD." Unfortunately, none of the Harvard fans could get the proper perspective on the actual wording...

Damn, I am in awe of these kids... "future leaders of America," indeed.

At least the Yalies.


Note to the Kos-heads: THIS is how you do a prank properly. All the work is done by the pranksters. What you are trying to do to the Weblog awards is not a prank, it is simple vandalism.

And in response to the "we were just pointing out the security flaws" argument, why don't I come by your house and let all the air out of your car's tires? There's no real damage being done, and I'm pointing out how insecure your car is, and how if someone wanted to they could have just slashed your tires. You oughta thank me for calling this vulnerability to your attention.


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Comments (7)

Hee hee - enough of this hu... (Below threshold)

Hee hee - enough of this humor already! Orff with his head, orff with his head, said the Queen in Alice of Wonderland.

I see a firestorm on the horizon. Could it be the lefties are trying to distract us?

-S- Was it you who wrote some days ago that you were looking over your CBSgate notes? I've been refreshing my memory too, reading at scyllacharybdis.blogspot.com and Rathergate.com. The clock is counting down, it's coming, it's coming - the BIG (WIZ)BANG, one of many to come, just like Watergate which went silent for months (shorten that to weeks in the 21st Century) but kept re-exploding till many heads were rollling.

I am not worthy.Th... (Below threshold)

I am not worthy.

That is a classic.

I think, Jay, that this is ... (Below threshold)

I think, Jay, that this is an excellent prank, but it really kinda pales by the natural comparison to what's believed by some to be the most famous college prank in history: The 1961 Rose Bowl.

This site explains in detail how the prank was pulled off … and for my money, the "how" of it makes for an even better story than the "what," "where" and "when."

Not to take anything away from Harvard. It's just that they're kinda doomed to be compared to a four-decades-old prank that will probably never be outdone.

The Harvard-Yale football g... (Below threshold)

The Harvard-Yale football game has been the target of many hacks - from MIT students.

The Yale Record report on the MIT-Harvard-Yale football game

In 1982 a black weather balloon, with MIT on its side, appeared out of the turf, expanded to 6 feet in diameter and exploded in a cloud of white smoke. This is described in The Jargon File entry for 'Hack' and there is a photo. The day was a busy one for MIT. There were two other MIT hacks in the same game. At half time the MIT band marched onto the field and played the MIT fight song. Cards were distributed in the stands to spell out MIT. The "Boston Globe" reported: "If you want to know the truth, MIT won The Game."

In 1990 a rocket erupted from the goal line carrying an 8.5' x 3.5' MIT banner over the goal post.
See the IHTFP Gallery entry for the Banner

In 1948 (or so) MIT students attempted to burn MIT into the turf with primacord (it was an different era) during the game. Harvard groundskeepers found the explosives and Harvard campus police set up a trap. On game day they arrested several MIT students wearing trench coats lined with batteries to set off the detonator. (The day was sunny and warm, the MIT students didn't blend in at all.) When an MIT dean was called in to bail out the students he pointed out that a battery coat was not really evidence of involvement in the hack. He said "All tech men carry batteries" and unbuttoned his coat to display the batteries lining his coat. Hacking

I dunno. As in, my college... (Below threshold)

I dunno. As in, my college experiences were too time consuming and full of requirements nearly 24/7, that left little to no room at all for much of anything except trying to sleep when I could and then reading some more, of which was never, ever completed.

But, the Yale/Harvard prank was a great feather for Yale. Very smart, very funny. Go, Yale.

That. Is. F'ing. Brilliant!... (Below threshold)

That. Is. F'ing. Brilliant!

Been there, done that (in 1... (Below threshold)
Galactic Jello:

Been there, done that (in 1961 no doubt):







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