Jenny Seeman is disgusted. Looking at her Aagard dorm’s toilet, she sees a brown smear on the seat. It’s frosting, but the realization does nothing but appall her further. She and her roommate, Caitlin Doring, decide they cannot be satisfied without revenge, because for these college students, revenge is sweeter than chocolate.
“Our neighbors did a small prank on us, so we decided to get them back,” said Seeman. “My roommate knew them before, so it wasn’t like we were doing it to strangers.”
Thus began their reign of terror.
Seeman and Doring made fake diarrhea from a recipe they found on Google. The organic refried beans, creamed corn and smashed green beans added to the realistic consistency; they waited for their neighbors to leave for chapel and put the finished product in the toilet, on the lid, and even – gingerly – on the toilet paper roll.
Doring laughingly recalled that when one of her neighbors saw the mess, she automatically assumed her roommate had gotten sick. It was not until she saw the note, “Don’t eat the tacos. Caitlin got sick,” that she realized a prank had been played.
While most college students across the nation party hard, Corban students have the difficult task of finding things to do that abide within the strictures of the code of conduct. Pranking is one such outlet that allows students to bond and still feel like they are doing something on the edge.
The Corban Handbook encourages students to “have fun and enjoy your time on campus,” though the handbook warns students that consequences may be applied to pranks that “go beyond good-natured fun or which harm, or have the potential to harm, individuals or personal or college property.”
In the weeks Corban has been in session, many pranks like the one Doring and Seeman concocted have already been played. From frozen underwear in the salad bar to clothes stapled to the ceiling of dorm halls, students are using their time, energy and creativity to outshine previous pranksters.
“It is important to recognize that you are in a community with people that have a wide variety of interests, different personalities, and different boundaries,” said Jimmy D’Agosta, Student Life director. “Though you may enjoy the occasional prank, others may not. Being courteous of others is important in community.”
The administration at Corban seems to recognize that pranks are likely to have a place at the college and, as such, deal with individuals on a case by case basis to assess whether or not fines or other disciplinary actions need to take place. For the most part, D’Agosta does not think pranks are a bad thing, but he also recognizes that the difference between pranks and jokes are that pranks are done to people rather than with them.
“Many times,” D’Agosta said, “the innocent prank gets out of hand when you continue to ‘one-up’ each other. What was intended as a harmless joke has now become a bigger issue. Maturity knows when it’s time to stop.”
For Doring, looking back at the prank she and Seeman played, she recognized that what she did was a bit off color.
“Jenny and I are really mean,” admitted Doring. “We smeared the fake poop on the wall, on the floor and even scattered it in their room on pieces of toilet paper.”
But even though they recognize this, they are in no hurry to stop their unholy war.