Maybe you thought the administration would reign in its attempts to stop Tour de Franzia after being publicly skewered everywhere from MSN to Gawker-owned feminist snarkfest Jezebel to something calling itself “BroBible.” You were wrong. If anything, after begging your parents to stop the mayhem, the powers that be have only stepped up their game, going so far as to email all faculty, have RAs set up military-style checkpoints outside student dorms on the night of the Tour, and threaten to slap students with six judicial points for, uh, “wearing costumes.” Don’t be mad! They’re just trying to keep you safe! Tour de Franzia is dangerous!
Anyway, here’s your definitive guide to everything you’ve been wondering about What the Fuck is the Administration Doing About Tour de Franzia This Year.
Q: When’s Tour de Franzia? How will I find out about it? Is it even happening this year? A: Who knows, but probably. There’s no fixed date, but in recent years it has occurred during one of the last weekends of the semester. It’s typically announced by an anonymous Facebook profile, “WesParty Guy” (which is deactivated when not in use), as well as via word of mouth and mass texts. There won’t be a Facebook event or whatever, especially after the Great Facebook Event Crackdown of 2010.
Thought you’d get through April without an ominous email from the administration about Tour de Franzia? Think again. By this point last year Dean Mike Whaley had already emailed your parents about the annual wine-fueled shit-show of a scavenger hunt, and the rest of the administration had quietly set in motion a personalized listserv-by-listserv email campaign imploring you not to participate. It didn’t really work, since Tour de Franzia popped off right on schedule, but on the other hand it sort of did, because participation and hospitalizations were each down by about 50%.
This year’s strategy seems to fall in line with the recent trend: having realized they can’t stop Tour de Franzia altogether (barring use of unreasonably draconian measures), administrators are leveling threats and ramping up judicial consequences in the hopes that participation continues to drop and eventually falls off altogether. The latest “D.A.R.E to Resist Franzia and Dinosaur Costumes” public service announcement comes from Dean Mike Whaley, who knocked off the traditional all-campus Tour de Franzia email on April 11. The gist of Whaley’s note is that judicial charges will be stricter than usual this year, whether or not you’re actually drinking or causing damage or doing anything particularly reckless:
After more than a month to reflect on February’s Senior Cocktails fallout, the Senior Class Officers have formally announced what some have already suspected: reports of the death of Senior Cocks have been greatly exaggerated. In fact, the events planned for Senior Week—an Outing Day and a Semi-Formal—are still on. From my inbox:
After working with the administration over the past weeks, we are pleased to announce that the events originally scheduled for Senior Week—Outing Day and Semi-Formal—will continue to be held on Tuesday, May 21 and Thursday, May 23 respectively. We are excited that our class will still have these opportunities to bond as a whole in an off-campus setting, and we look forward to planning them so that they are successful and enjoyable for all.
But there’s a twist. Come on, you can figure it out:
Reported quote from the incident report: “Wesleyan student removed from the 6th floor for riding the dinosaur.”
If you’ve recently braved the chilly wintry air to get a snack from Weshop before commencing your diligent studies, you may have noticed a conspicuous white News 8 van perched on the corner of Church and Pine. It’s not every day that our little campus generates localnewsattention, so the media presence may cause some people to worry. But the answer shouldn’t be much of a surprise:
Was just approached by an abc news woman wanting to know what happened at senior cocktails. #FuckOff
On Friday, the third Senior Cocks event came to an abrupt halt when the senior class was kicked out of the Connecticut Science Center in Hartford. (Haven’t heard the story? Catch up here and here.) Apparently the scandal has generated so much attention that News 8, based in New Haven, has stopped by to talk to seniors and grab some video shots of our frigid lovely campus. The news van’s been busy, having already visited the museum to talk to employees and gather their side of the story before coming to Wes. The reporter whom I spoke to wasn’t entirely forthcoming with her goals, but I gathered that even she was uncertain whether or not the science center would be pressing charges against Wesleyan.
Spoiler: It involves sex, drugs, and rock & roll projectile vomiting.
Last night, around 7:30 p.m., a few hundred well-oiled members of the Class of 2013 piled into buses outside of Usdan, headed—unbeknownst to passengers—to the Connecticut Science Center in Hartford. Two hours later, a drunker, louder, and scientifically inspired Class of 2013 was herded onto the same buses and driven right back to Middletown. The “Freaks and Geeks, Valentine’s Day style”-themed evening—which cost $40 and made for the third senior event of the year—wasn’t supposed to end abruptly in less than two hours, but according to one student who overheard an exchange between museum staffers and Wesleyan coordinators, the ejection may have been well earned.
“I overheard that staffers at the Connecticut Science Center observed students ‘doing drugs and having sex in the bathrooms,’ and that things were getting broken,” explained the student, who asked not to be named. “I am not sure whether or to what extent that is exaggerated or not; it was said rather offhandedly and by someone who appeared to be under a lot of duress at the time.”
If you noticed copious amounts of baking soda lining the stairs of the museum, that, too, had something to do with the staff’s unhappy reaction.
AlcoholEdu. Ever heard of it? Unless you’re a senior, you did it. Here are some of the results:
In August of 2010, a full 8.65% of the incoming freshman Class of 2014 reported having been taken advantage of sexually, in one form or another, during the preceding two weeks while drinking. Fast forward two months into their first semester, that figure jumped to 13.48%, again during only the preceding two weeks. A similar jump occurred for the incoming freshman Class of 2015 a year later (going from 8.80% to 14.16%) and then again this year for the incoming freshman Class of 2016 (going from 4.49% to 10.49%). Even more chilling were the accompanying figures: 8.46% of the incoming Class of 2014 self-reported having taken advantage of someone sexually in the preceding two weeks, and this figure only dropped by 1.06% two months into school. For the freshman Class of 2015, the starting figure was only 4.28%, but then this number increased to 9.09% after two months, a similar trend reflected this year in the Class of 2016 (starting at 4.20% and increasing to 6.23%).
These self-reported, population-wide figures indicate that approximately 100 incidents of sexual misconduct occur during any two week period at Wesleyan for members of the freshman class alone, and only including those occasions when alcohol was involved.
I’ve written about the monstrosity of sexual assault before. It’s (sadly) been a frequent (andpressing) topicofconversation in the college blogosphere of late. I don’t need to re-hash everything — it’s in the links — but clearly the subject merits continued conversation (as if that was ever unclear). Let’s review some basic facts:
Sexual assault is bad.
Sexual assault should not be permitted or perpetrated.
Sexual assault is both permitted (culturally) and perpetrated (constantly).
A fourth crucial fact is that you (yes, you) are responsible, just like everyone else, for the prevention of sexual assault. And boy-oh-boy is it preventable.
The view from Senior Fauver, as photographed by Tunayesterday afternoon.
This morning we received in our tipbox an account, from an anonymous reader, of a rather heroic rescue that took place late last night, during blizzard conditions:
Last night, a bunch of my friends and I saw a figure muddling through the blizzard. He collapsed in the snow, and did not get up. Julia Holewinski ’15, wearing just a sweater, immediately ran outside and hauled the man inside with some difficulty. He was clearly extremely intoxicated, and his eyelashes were frozen solid. We think his name is [removed] (class of ’14). If Julia hadn’t had the presence of mind and physical strength to drag him inside, he probably would have died in a snowdrift.
Besides applauding Holewinski for her courageous rescue, this seems like an opportune time to remind you that if you feel the need to get wasted during blizzard conditions (which is all fine and good), drink responsibly and don’t go wading through snow alone at night. If you spot an obviously smashed friend attempting to stumble home alone through snow drifts and heavy winds, walk with them or offer them your couch. Sorry to get all mom on you all of a sudden.
Speaking of snow rescues, pyrotechnics’post this morning noted that some students (especially in Lo-Rise) are quite literally unable to open their front doors because of the Alaskan-style snow drifts.
Beer, biking, and the great state of Vermont. Most of my deepest fantasies involve at least two of those delights. Wesleyan alumni and all-around bodacious dudes Greg Brodsky ’99 and Scott Cavanaugh ’99 apparently dream in a similar language, which is why they’ve taken it upon themselves to plan and, later this month, lead a “Vermont Bike and Brewery Challenge,” also known as “Pretty Much The Greatest Thing Ever.” Eric Swack ’14, who’s also involved (intergenerational Wesleyan bonding, here we come!), writes in with some of the key details:
Wes alums Greg Brodsky ’99and Scott Cavanaugh ’99are organizing a bike tour of Vermont breweries this August, run through Scott’s Mount Major Adventures. Vermont is a premier destination for both cycling, with its tranquil county roads, as well as beer, as it boasts the most breweries per capita of any state. We will visit over half of the breweries in the state, including The Alchemist, makers of the renowned Heady Topper! The trip runs August 25 – 29, and participants are welcome to join for as much or as little of the ride as they please, so join them for a day, a weekend or the full experience. The trip is free, so you do have to buy your own beer. Lodging and other info can be found on the site here.
Continued from yesterday, here is the second administration-centered interview on Tourde Franzia (henceforth marked as TDF), this time with Dean Mike Whaley, Vice President of Student Affairs. It’s pretty damn long, and so I’m just going to jump into it, but before that I want to note two things:
(1) Zach and I conducted this interview on the morning of SpringFling, so when we tell this story we like saying “We pregamed Spring Fling with Mike Whaley.” Technically, that’s not an inaccurate statement, but there were no drinkies, so maybe it is. But that’s only if you’re being particular about the definition of pregaming.
(2) When we were conducting the interview, the dean had ambient, meditative/trance music going on in the background. This compelled, at least for me, a sleep-inducing lull that resulted in a lack of coherence, and so the conversation went in a mostly roundabout fashion. What follows is not the natural conversation as it happened, but a selective reorganization of the transcript. We assure you, however, that nothing whatsoever is misrepresented.