A Slate writer self-mockingly discusses the appeal of collegiate a cappella, based on a new book about the adventures of a few college groups, including the Tufts Beelzebubs and the University of Virginia Hullabahoos, and her own undergraduate ordeals:
I was an a cappella nerd, and I loved every minute of it—but, even so, I didn’t show my boyfriend the videos until we’d been dating for a year and a half. Nothing from my past evokes quite the same derision, and I say that as a former debater, mock-trial lawyer, and mathlete.
The crimes of a cappella, after all, are legion and well-documented. The dumb outfits. The dm-dm-ka-cha‘s that are supposed to approximate the sound of drums and hi-hats. The fact that on many college campuses, it’s always being shoved in your face… Perhaps most damning of all is the fact that a cappella is so painfully earnest, so distressingly eager to please.