As prospective applicants, we all heard about how participation in intramurals enhances the Yale College experience. Not good enough for varsity or club? Well you can still play on the intramural team. Not even good enough for the IM level? Well maybe it’s about time you that participated in your own IM.

Think about it: Is your upper body strength too weak to be on the varsity climbing team? Well, then, try out for the IM social climbing team. Are you feeling like you’re a bum because you’re not constantly at a sports practice? Maybe fill out your schedule and plan your meals for the next month. WEEKEND is here to show you some all-too-common “IMs” that are played around Yale’s campus, that maybe you can take part in.

IM Napping


Napping is a lot like grape juice, because I’ve noticed that not napping closely resembles the feeling of being really drunk on wine: wooly, woozy, warm. So it shouldn’t surprise you that some of my more “sober and judicious” friends — those are two traits my Lit professor finds I lack — well, those friends swear by their afternoon nappy-poos the way I swear by my fish oil capsules. Consider my friend David, who took a 20-minute snooze during our Econ midterm … and still did better than me.

Napping’s a real shit show, though. David may not have gotten spittle all over his bluebook (or maybe he did), but I sure did all over the shoulder of a DOD arms dealer the last time I flew to Israel. On the way back to New York, this cult-leader type to my right folded up on the tray table and, as it turned out somewhere over Switzerland — in a moment that could have used some of that Swiss restraint I keep hearing about — that I had curled up right on this guy’s back. Purrrrr.

But really, the WORST part of napping is when people walk by and suddenly remember their childhood dreams of being National Geographic photographers. Sure, it’s flattering to be compared to that Afghan girl with green eyes, but you know what sucks? Next thing you know, it’s on Twitter: that pic of you sprawling in the buttery. In the Sillibrary. On the floor (I have one of David napping on the floor.) So, in the spirit of sadism, the IM committee should adopt the game of (S)Napping. The rules? You earn a point for every picture you snap of someone napping. Bonus points for creativity, artistry of shot, all that jazz (plus if their mouth is open, or if it’s a professor!) On the flip side, points are deducted for every pic of a napper from your college.

Note that the resident nappers/comfy chair hogs at Blue State are off-limits to your cameras obscura. Now that would just be cheating.

IM Social Climbing


Last year, my roommate spent some time with the Yale Rock Climbing Team. By mid-year, however, he’d basically abandoned the group. “It’s terrible, Aaron! You exercise for, like, five minutes straight! And then they have you hold a rope for someone, and if you drop it, they’re dead. ”

I know just the thing. Next Thursday night, we’re going to the Study.

As captain of TD’s IM Social Climbing squad, I was careful to reserve the Study at the beginning of the year; as a practice space, it’s miles ahead of SOM or Wolf’s Head, even before superior cocktail selection comes into play. (Skull and Bones, of course, doubles as Yale’s club Social Climbing team, though members do come by our matches on occasion.) Thursday nights, we gear up for weekend matches with grueling interval workouts: two-minute speed date, 30-second elevator pitch, martini sip, catch your breath with a casual introduction, repeat. It’s tough work, but with sterling results; TD came in second to Davenport in last year’s tournament. This year, I’ve added a cool-down round of Never Have I Ever to each practice, to prevent overtraining. We’ll be unstoppable.

If you’re not familiar with the sport, here’s a quick rundown. Match locations are random, to avoid site-specific training: One week, it’s a rave at Box, while the next might be toasting at Mory’s or pancake night in the Stiles basement. Captains are first up for their teams in Singles play; points are awarded for first business-card handoff, the best list of summer prospects, and firmest handshake, within reason. (After the president of YIRA broke Brandon Levin’s wrist in 2010, we had to alter that rule.) Scoring criteria change slightly in couple’s play, where a careful balance must be kept between flirting with your opponent’s partner and maintaining eye, hand and/or lip contact with your own.

My favorite aspect of IM Social Climbing is the championship match, held at the Yale Club of New York. Last year’s was a furious free-for-all in which any aspect of the environment was fair game for conversation: the view from the top floor, classy books on the shelves of the library, the butler’s bow tie. Davenport edged us out when their captain — a senior, naturally — spotted the McKinsey partner who’d given her case interview and gave him a two-armed hug. I couldn’t parry the blow, and was forced into the penalty corner for a cutting remark Provost Salovey judged to be off-color. This year, though, my wit is honed to a fine point, and with the help of my roommate — a tech entrepreneur whose father is on the board of Proctor and Gamble — I’m sure TD will assume its rightful place at the top.



Like soccer to most of the rest of the world, IM Google Calendar (or IM Gcal, for veterans of the sport) is a fan favorite and practical requirement for inclusion in the Yale community. Its rules are simple, but its execution is not.

The basics of the game are as follows:

1. The person with the most commitments logged in their Gcal, and thus the most points, wins.

2. They can be a mix of classes, meals, social events and extracurricular commitments. However, as classes are the base requirement for existing here, they count for only one point. Meals (only slightly less common) are worth two, social events three and extracurricular commitments are worth four.

3. Participants also gain points for the number of colors for different categories in their Gcals (one color category = one point) and for scheduling commitments as closely together as possible.

Real champions of the game can be found anywhere, but most often and obviously they are those friends we all have in our lives who are seemingly always feverishly running off to one commitment or another. They are the suitemates who you see only sporadically and entirely inconsistently, despite sharing a living space with them. They are the people of Yale, who, lacking a Time Turner, have nailed down the Google Calendar app to an exact science.

Like running is to a myriad of other sports like basketball, soccer and ultimate frisbee, so is IM Gcal to IM Social Climbing — an independent pursuit in and of itself, but a vital skill to master for success in the latter. bona fide Gcal pros can schedule a productive yet leisurely lunch with their advisor at 12:34 and still manage to catch the shuttle up to Science Hill for their 1 p.m. lab. So next time you feel shunted for having to schedule coffee to hang out with your supposed “friend,” try giving them a round of applause for their dedication instead.

IM Emailing


Most of us haven’t really played that many “IM sports,” so this impromptu rulebook for our new club (team?) might not follow proper protocol (note: ask the hockey player in your FroCo group to review).

We’ve all heard it said that the strongest muscle in your body is your tongue. Well this intramural sport aims to proves that another part of your body is even stronger. Your fingers, of course!

We are all guilty. We came to Yale with a resume loaded with everything from student government to the newspaper you edited to the club you started and ran for half a year. Upon arriving at college, you walked into that extracurricular bazaar and fell in love with the first boy who showed interest in you — just kidding, you fell in love with every activity! You signed a sheet held out to you by the girl holding a tuba, took a red rubber duck from Red Hot poker, gave your email to boy wearing a TED Talk shirt, and probably signed something held out to you by the infamous Josh Eisenstat. Mistake!

Now is the time to right that wrong.

In IM emailing, each participant starts with an inbox of 150 messages. Using a stress ball for preparation is recommended. At the given time, each member must start sorting through their emails. Labels must be created, links to stop receiving emails must be clicked, responses to deans must be spell checked.

Winner gets a cleared inbox. And 100 points to Gryffindor.


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