A blast to the past: A look back at senior pranks

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by Aren Framil, Co-Design Editor After two years of radio silence, senior pranks have returned with a bang. Along with Senior Assassins, senior pranks are an unofficial ’Stoga tradition that have garnered mixed emotions during their long history. From placing dead fish in the library to putting a car on top of the gym, they...

by Aren Framil, Co-Design Editor

After two years of radio silence, senior pranks have returned with a bang. Along with Senior Assassins, senior pranks are an unofficial ’Stoga tradition that have garnered mixed emotions during their long history. From placing dead fish in the library to putting a car on top of the gym, they have left an impression on not only the students, but also those who have been around through the years to see the good, the bad and the ugly sides of senior pranks: teachers.

Past senior pranks have often involved some sort of disruption to classes and the normal school routine. Social studies teacher David Zimmerman recalled a prank that involved releasing pigeons in the cafeteria, causing mayhem and creating a safety risk for both the birds and students. Ultimately, the cafeteria was shut down and students could not get food for the rest of the day.

However, some senior pranks had a touch of ingenuity to them. “Just prefacing by saying they’re not not necessarily appropriate, but they released thousands of crickets in the school. It took a while for the crickets to either escape (the) school or be killed, so for weeks afterward, you could still hear the crickets chirping,” Zimmerman said. “I think the clever thing about that prank was that there was an auditory aspect to it, and you’d hear these crickets every once in a while, weeks after the prank was over. So I thought, in that sense, it was a good prank. Bad prank in the sense that a lot of crickets died.” 

And so raises the question; what defines a good or bad prank?

“I would define a good (prank) as harmless and funny, but not too many fit that criteria. Usually there’s some damage or somebody’s inconvenienced,” Zimmerman said. 

The concern about the mess senior pranks often leave behind is not an anomaly amongst the teachers. “I like the culture of the school. I think it’s imperative that we really enjoy our community. However, when senior pranks cause any type of custodian to have to do more work, I think that is just an egregious offense to respecting their work,” said Merri Gardner, a U.S. History and Government teacher. “I don’t want anything disrespectful to the property of the school, the custodians or anybody who works in the school. This is our community, right?”

In comparison, this year’s senior prank was relatively tame, with seniors camping out in the teachers’ parking lot around 4 a.m. Still, this year’s seniors have made an unforgettable impact on the teachers and staff. Through trouble and turbulence, they have prevailed again and again. 

“I love the seniors. They’ve been through so much, and I’m going to miss them,” Gardner said. “They come in here, and for four years, we’re with them and caring about them and then poof, they’re gone. And I never see them again. But I’m very proud of them.”


Aren Framil can be reached at [email protected]

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