Embracing the Insanity

Wednesday, October 16, 2013 by Emma

We’re six weeks into the school year, so that can only mean one thing: midterm season! Beginning a few weeks ago and stretching until late November, midterm season is different for everyone. Some classes only have a midterm and a final, others have two or three midterms spread out across the semester. During this season, it is not uncommon to find Mudders roaming the campus clutching hot mugs of coffee or clustered around doodle-ridden whiteboards in an attempt to study. Now, more than ever, is when Mudders need to make the most of their breaks. I have a few choice examples of some of my more insane study breaks in the past few weeks.

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This isn’t one of the more insane study breaks, but sometimes you just need to relax in the sun by a fountain on Pomona.
 

My dorm is known for playing a lot of board games, though we’re by no means the only gaming fans on campus. However, this past weekend, some people from my dorm decided to take advantage of the fact that we have approximately four copies of the same game by combining two of the copies into a single session. The game is called Betrayal, and the basic premise is that players explore an old house by moving around and drawing tiles for different rooms. Eventually, one person is discovered to be a traitor who is trying to attack everyone else by summoning monsters, transporting the house into an alternate dimension, or something similar. The game is normally played in under an hour with about six people exploring one house. This version took twelve people about two and a half hours to complete, after which time most people were dead, several were zombified, and the last two remaining explorers were running throughout the double house using secret passages as well as a large arsenal of weapons and items to try and hold off a zombie hoard and bring the house back from an unknown dimension.

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The game board after about an hour and a half, when people were either dead, zombified, or amassing tons of weapons and items.
 

One slightly unconventional way to release pent-up studying energy is through exercise. How is this unconventional, you may ask? Well, one way to get exercise is at ITR Games, held on Friday nights/Saturday mornings at midnight! ITR stands for Ineligible to Re-register, and the joke is that, since the games were originally held on Sunday night/Monday morning, you would fail out of Mudd if you dared to attend. At ITR Games, a bunch of people gather in Mudd’s underground maze of old classrooms, labs, and lecture halls. The story goes that those who gather become a city of villagers trying to drive off psychokillers, werewolves, vampires, zombies, and more. Basically, we all run around with duct tape “daggers” and scream our lungs out until about 4AM, at which point we go and get donuts. It’s good fun.

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A map of the Libra complex, where ITR games take place. Do not venture into scary mystical engineer land if you value your life.
 

As Emi mentioned in her previous blog post, the college has events called CAP trips, where the cost of an off-campus event will be subsidized for large groups of Mudders. Last weekend, I went on a CAP trip to Disneyland.

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The park entrance, all decked out for Halloween.
 

By the magic of CAP, my ticket only cost $35.  You might call it the ultimate study break, since we left campus around 8:30AM and stayed at the park until closing at midnight. The park was decorated for Halloween, and some rides even had spooky additions, like a CGI monster in Space Mountain and a Nightmare before Christmas theme on the Haunted Mansion ride. An event called Gay Days was happening at Disneyland when we were there, where gay rights supporters wore red at the park. Some Mudders brought pride flags along, and my friends and I could not resist the temptation to have a bit of fun.

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Group photo in the Haunted Mansion mirror! Photo cred to Allison Mis, ’15.
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This is our crowning achievement. My friends and I decided to show our Gay Days spirit on Splash Mountain and we somehow convinced them to sell us the picture afterwards!

 

Though it’s still midterm season, taking tons of study breaks for craziness with friends is a great way to say sane! I’m managing to stay afloat in the deluge of tests and assignments because of all of this silliness. On the whole, Mudders are a crazy bunch both in and out of the classroom, and not afraid to show it.

Until next time!

Emma