Harvard student Richard Head just wants to drink water.

He wants to walk to class carrying his 80 ounce Nalgene bottle, sit down in lecture, unscrew the giant lid, and take a big gulp of the fresh Charles River water. Not only is this practice hip, but it keeps him hydrated, which is essential in the sweltering heat of Cambridge, Mass.

But Mr. Head is finding out that hydration is no longer guaranteed in these chaotic times of terrorism and underage drinking.

Due to rampant underage drinking, Harvard authorities have banned Nalgene bottles on campus for fear they will be filled with alcoholic beverages.

“We realized the tailgate restrictions were a great idea, so we thought, why not implement a campus-wide policy? Plus, the world is happy when Harvard students are unhappy,” Harvard President Lawrence Summers said.

Originally, there was talk of having police check students’ IDs as they entered and left buildings, giving those who are 21 and over wristbands that would allow them to carry Nalgene bottles, but administrators decided it would be easier to enact a sweeping ban on the Nalgene.

“Nalgene bottles come in all different colors, so you never know what they are filled with. You can see what is in the clear, disposable bottles, which are easy to check by opening and smelling. But opening and smelling all those Nalgene bottles would take much more manpower than we currently have. Do you realize how big and clumsy those bottles are? And the lids are attached with this annoying plastic band. So, yeah, that method was out of the question,” one Harvard campus policeman reported.

It seems a rise in alcoholism at Harvard has sparked this new policy. Most likely, the rapidly decreasing quality of life and low levels of female attractiveness account for this increase in drunkenness. The students have been driven into tailspins of binge drinking in order to cope with dire circumstances.

“Well, this ban has a three-pronged effect. First, it deprives you of hydration. What do they expect us to do, use water fountains? Secondly, it prohibits you from looking trendy and cool. Some of these kids can thank their Nalgene bottles for the friends they have, the girls they’ve met, the grades they’ve gotten. Let’s face it, people respect you if you carry a Nalgene bottle. They think, ‘Hey, there is a person who is serious about staying hydrated.’ The third prong of the effect is that it deprives us of being able to get drunk in class, in the cafeteria or in the gym. You cannot cope with life as a Harvard student without being drunk. If you’re sober, just looking at the people at this place makes you wanna dry heave. Seriously, try it,” said one Harvard student who chose to remain anonymous.

Just as a few dirty terrorists ruined liberty for everyone with the Patriot Act, a few dirty drunkards have ruined hydration for Harvard students with the Nalgene Act. To the liberal whack-jobs at Yale — I mean Harvard — the Nalgene Act is just as Draconian and McCarthyistic as its Patriot Act counterpart.

How do former Harvard students feel about these measures?

We tried contacting Al Gore, but he was busy playing “crazy mountain man” with his new beard somewhere in the Appalachian Mountains.

Matt Damon responded with ambivalence.

“Does Ben Affleck like the policy? Because if he does, then I do, too. Isn’t that right, Benny? Friends ’til the end! Benny? Where are you? It’s been so long — I miss your smell,” Damon said.

Al Franken took a strong stance on the issue.

“Rah rah rah right wing conspiracy! Rah rah rah rah corporations rah rah Bill O’Reilly rah rah civil liberties! I’m Stuart Smalley! Buy my book! Rah!” Franken exclaimed.

Even Yale students have an opinion on the Nalgene Act. One Yalie clarified the difference between the Yale and Harvard administrations’ approaches.

“You know, we may live in New Haven, which isn’t really a city. In fact, if New Jersey is the armpit of America, then I guess New Haven is like the festering genital wart of America. Anyway, we may live in the herpes of America, and we may get hepatitis if we fall on the floor at Toad’s, but at least our administration embraces drunkenness. Plus, the Unabomber didn’t go to Yale, so that automatically puts us ahead,” the student confidently stated.

As of now, Richard Head and his fellow Harvard tools will have to wander the streets of Cambridge parched and sober. Some will cope by using water fountains or buying spring water. Others will take shots before class or carry flasks. Whatever the alternative, their souls’ thirst for freedom won’t be quenched, and a dehydrated soul is a useless soul.

But we already knew Harvard souls were useless, so I guess the real lesson is Yale is better.

Carl Williott owns a bright pink 80 ounce Nalgene that he is proud to take to The Game.