Early Wednesday morning between midnight and 4 a.m, a group of Jonathan Edwards College students spread Vaseline on the handles of doors in the Branford College basement and posted hundreds of obscene flyers throughout the college. Earlier in the week, the group planted alarm clocks throughout Branford that sounded at various times of the day.
The group, comprised of about 40 JE students, call themselves the “Men of JE.”
“Is this what a man of JE does, or is this what a weasel does?” Branford College Master Steven Smith said.
Wednesday morning, Smith sent Branford students an e-mail explaining the incident.
“We don’t know exactly who did it, but the vandals did leave a calling card and a warning,” he said. “What word comes to mind about a certain college whose motto is JE SUX? Stupid?”
The posters placed throughout Branford College read, “Notice to Branford College Students: JE Is Coming!!!” They included a pornographic picture and were taped on walls and fixtures throughout Branford and placed in suite mailboxes.
“I think it’s ridiculous, but I can understand why JE would do this,” said Branford College Council President NaHyun Cho ’03. “I mean, look at their college.”
Smith said it took janitorial staff over three hours to clean up the mess created by the group.
“We found everything lubed. It was all over,” Branford janitor Butch Narro said.
Jonathan Edwards College Master Gary Haller declined to comment.
Sahm Adrangi ’03, leader of the group, described the Men of JE as “part a cappella group, part defender of Yale and JE ideals.” The group has existed for about 10 years.
Adrangi is a staff columnist for the Yale Daily News and a former editorials editor.
He said the pranks are part of a two-week plan: the first week being a “week of pestilence” and the second week being a week of conquer.
“We feel it’s time to conquer Branford and take them under our wing and show them the way of Jonathan Edwards,” Adrangi said. “We do believe that the Branford people need a modern-day Great Awakening.”
Some Branford students said they thought differently.
“Everyone in JE wants to be in Branford anyway, so they’re trying to make up for what they lack,” Chanel Stark ’03 said.
Adrangi said the pranks played on Branford are part of a larger plan of attack — the group hopes to conquer all of Yale College.
E-mails from members of the Men of JE discuss “Blue Phone Strikes,” which include plans to call various blue phones around campus in an “ominous voice that echoes with doom.”
The e-mail suggests that callers use phrases like, “Branford, prepare to meet your doom. JE is coming”; “Branford, repent! Repent! Branford, you are sinners in the hands of an angry JE. Repent at once or prepare to suffer!”; and “Hey Branford, this is your mom. I just called to tell you — you suck!”
The e-mail, which refers to members “Brother Sexy Squirrel” and “Brother Marshmallow Puff,” also lists over 20 blue phone numbers, including those in the vicinity of Branford College.
“I want to ask them the question, what kind of man is it that sneaks into the basement of another college and puts Vaseline on the door handles and obscene posters all around?” Smith said.
Adrangi said the group did not mean for the prank to cause any harm.
“If we went overboard, we are very regretful,” he said.