Tag Archive: Crazy Stuff

  1. Jump rope champion Simpson ’13 discusses sport, training

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    Need a new workout technique? Looking for ways to impress friends with a quirky skill? Want to travel the world? Scott Simpson ’13 may be able to help you out with that.

    The 2008 USA Jump Rope Grand National Champion has given up competitive jump roping for now, but, according to a newly released video for the Yale Office of Public Affairs & Communications, he still jumps for joy — and in the most unexpected places, too.

    Simpson sat down with the News to discuss his training, the lessons he’s drawn from life as a professional jumper and to explain why he thinks jump rope is the best sport of all.

    Q: So tell me about the video that the Yale Office of Public Affairs & Communications released. Do you jump rope through Sterling [Memorial Library] often?

    A: No, never. And I don’t really foresee ever jumping rope in any of those places again. It’s funny because it’s not like I keep it a secret, but jumping rope isn’t really something I talk about here. It’s just not part of my identity. But Michael Morand, the Deputy Chief Communications Officer, approached me about doing a video for the website after he saw me perform in a community dance show at the co-op high school.

    Q: How did you first get into jumping rope?

    A: I started seriously when I was six, which is when I joined a jump roping team from my area called the Kangaroo Kids Precision Jump Rope Team. The head coach was my PE teacher in elementary school. Also, my babysitter was on the team before me and I saw her perform. So I guess technically I’ve been doing it for 16 years.

    Q: Do you still compete now?

    A: No, the last time I competed was the summer after freshman year of college. That was when I participated in the World Championships. Competing throughout college would have made me miss out on so much that I wanted to do in college because of having to travel so much.

    Q: How exactly do competitions work?

    A: It’s broken up into two different categories: speed and freestyle. Speed is when you’re given a certain amount of time and you try to get as many jumps in as you can. Freestyle is more about routines involving different tricks and moves you do to get points. For each category, there are further differences, such as relays, single rope or Double Dutch.

    Q: Do you consider this a sport?

    A: It’s definitely a sport. There’s certainly a giggle factor — imagine me jumping rope in elementary school when everyone else is playing soccer. I was teased a lot about it being a girly sport. But at the end of the day, I was going to nationals and those kids were going to be playing in their community basketball game, so I didn’t worry too much about it.

    Q: What sort of lessons did jump roping teach you and what’s your favorite thing about the activity?

    A: I’d say teamwork, a strong work ethic, and a lot of leadership. I was one of the oldest people on my team and so I spent a lot of time teaching the younger kids and helping out my coach. It also definitely taught me discipline. When I was still competing as a freshman here, I trained every single day in Payne Whitney. Carving out that time was difficult.

    What I like best about it is the creativity that it involves. There’s so much opportunity to invent new things. My specialty was a move called rope releases where you’re jumping and then release one handle and catch it in an unusual way.

    Q: The video is called “jump for joy.” Is that accurate? Is joy the reason you jump rope?

    A: I definitely get joy out of it. Oftentimes it’s not the personal gratification from the jumping itself, but performing is really gratifying because it allows you to share something you love and have spent so much time practicing with someone else. Even though I’ve largely given it up, I’ll still jump as a workout every now and then. And it’s always something I can go back to.

  2. Cheese truck challenge claims another winner

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    Pedestrians passing by the Caseus Cheese Truck parked on York Street this afternoon gave Peter Kelly GRD ’15 a wide berth, and understandably so — they saw him demolishing 10 tomato and grilled cheese sandwiches with a look on his face of stern determination and considerable nausea.

    The folding table and mere two onlookers were not indicative of the historical event that was taking place: Kelly became the third person ever to succeed at the Caseus Cheese Truck Challenge by eating 10 tomato grilled cheeses in under an hour.

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    “I was hungry, so the first five were pretty good. Six, seven, eight—not so good. Ten was pretty painful,” said Kelly, who succeeded by stuffing the last quarter-sandwich in his mouth with about two minutes left, before promptly throwing up over the Jonathan Edwards College wall once he was declared champion.

    Those who succeed in eating a classic grilled cheese with at least one topping of choice get their sandwich named after them on the side of the truck. Winners can also get their namesake sandwich free of charge for life.

    It’s not a task to be taken on lightly: the Caseus Cheese Truck website warns that losers must pay for the sandwiches they eat and “get nothing but full of cheese sandwiches.”

    Kelly strategically chose tomato as the topping for his classic grilled cheese (which comes standard with provolone, swiss, comte, gruyere, gouda, sharp cheddar “and more” on sourdough) because he thought meat like applewood bacon or Berkshire pulled pork would be significantly heavier.

    He named the combo the “Barberis and Kelly (2012),” a citation-like ode to his advisor, SOM Finance Professor Nicholas Barberis. Kelly and his friends also considered the name “Barbaric Barberis” pretty seriously.

    It remains to be seen how much desire Kelly will have for his free lunch after consuming 10 so rapidly. According to the Cheese Truck staff, of the two previous winners, Etkin Tekin ’12 has only returned twice to claim his bacon and guacamole grilled cheese, the “TEKIN,” and the second champion has yet to come back for more.

    Correction 10.6.12

    An earlier version of this article misspelled Etkin Tekin.

  3. Makeshift tombstone marks end of Safety Dance

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    If you’re mourning the end of Safety Dance, you’re not alone.

    Students enacted an impromptu cardboard tombstone on Cross Campus on Friday, memorializing the 1980s-themed dance that was canceled earlier this week.

    The gray-painted tombstone read “Safety Dance, R.I.P., 1980s – 2012: Never gonna give you up,” signaling an apparent homage to the well-known 1987 single of the same name by musician Rick Astley. Neon-colored clothing — popular outfits for Safety Dance — and two grieving roses were also piled around the base of the memorial.

    Administrators announced that Safety Dance would be cancelled earlier this week after eight students were sent to the hospital for drinking-related incidents on the night of the dance.

    Safety Dance has been held annually in the Commons dining hall since 1990.

  4. Other new websites compile various services

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    Every day, in every way, Yalies are supposed to strive for the best. During shopping period that translates into a nasty twice-yearly sale, where nothing is actually on sale, especially not textbooks, and everyone is stressed because OMG we have to take the best classes! A key part of this ritual is receiving hordes of promotional emails.

    But now comes a rando website that’s not just for regular Elis — it’s for baller scholars.

    An email sent out early this morning — just after the email from Everything Useful — from the mysterious but aptly named ‘Yet Another Yale Student Website Creator’ encourages students to “get the best deals so you don’t have to quintuple-mortgage the family farm just to take a science credit.” Cross Campus is certain a brusque “uhwhut” followed by a curt “kthx” were mentally beamed back to this suggestion from all across campus.

    Apparently, using YetAnotherYaleTextbookWebsite.com will help you “realize your full potential.” Pumped? The site seems to be an attempt at a central directory, and lists twelve potential sources for purchasing or renting textbooks textbooks, including Amazon, BookRenter.com and the YCC-YHHAP Book Exchange.

    Of equal interest is sister site YetAnotherYaleBluebookWebsite.com, which, while offering a smaller selection of only six bluebooking options (one of which is OCS – r u srs?), may be equally valuable to the confused Yalie.

    It as yet unclear whether they were created by some jerk who doesn’t have reading yet or an altruistic soul just trying to make our lives easier, or whether this is all one big LOL. We’re leaning toward the LOL.

  5. Man pretended to be Harvard student for months

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    A 27-year-old man named Abe Liu was escorted out of Harvard’s Weld Hall last week after pretending to be a member of Harvard’s freshman class for months, the Harvard Crimson reported Wednesday.

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    Liu, a student at Harvard’s Extension school, reportedly attended North Carolina State but dropped out. He joined Harvard’s Class of 2015 Facebook group this past summer, and began interacting with students and creating a false persona for himself.

    The Harvard Independent first broke the story in a article published online on Tuesday evening. The Independent’s story adds that Harvard’s freshman class was alerted to Liu’s situation on Sunday afternoon via a student-created meme featuring the “Y U NO” Guy asking Liu, “Y U NO WHO U SAY WHO U ARE?”

    The Independent claimed Liu had on occasion told students he was a former Olympian, but he told the paper in a Tuesday evening interview that their facts “were entirely incorrect.”

    In addition to publishing the story about Liu, the Independent’s story calls into question why the Crimson had not yet run a story about Liu. In a follow-up article today, the Independent quotes Liu as claiming that he had personally convinced the Crimson‘s managing editor, Elias Groll ’12, not to run the story although the Crimson had been working on it for a week.

    The Independent has claimed that Liu participated in the Crimson’s induction rituals, but Liu has denied this claim. The Crimson published their story one day after the Independent released their version.

    He has admitted to forging a Harvard ID, but denies stealing another student’s ID.

    From Liu’s interview with the Crimson:

    “The first lie is like, ‘Oh, I’m a student at the College.’ They always want to know more, so you start telling a lot of little white lies. And then you find yourself integrated into that society.”

    “You get so deep, you don’t know how to stop it.”

    “I made a mistake. My mistake was being lonely.”

    “At the end of the day, all I wanted to do was to be friends. The people that met me, the people that knew me, know that I never asked them for anything. I never coerced them into anything.”

    Liu’s Facebook account is now unsearchable, and his posts on the Class of 2015 Facebook group are gone.

  6. Fake Mary Miller twitter account returns

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    It’s back.

    Despite having been shut down last week, the Twitter account parodying Yale College Dean Mary Miller account appears to have returned (with a different name). “Miller” tweeted today: “Rumors of our death were greatly exaggerated, but username will change to comply with the “laws”, try following @fakedeanmary.”

    Among other topical 140-character quips released in the past hours? “Now that the endowment recovered undergrads will get YLS swipes back…#jk Actually I’ll use it to buy new tablecloth for development events”

  7. Pepsi-themed Yale pride at Stop & Shop

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    In a moment of neighborly pride, Stop & Shop on Whalley Avenue decided to show its allegiance in a creative way: a tower of Pepsi products that reads “Y Bulldogs.” A Yalie snapped a picture.

  8. Campus secrets organization hosts “security summit”


    This weekend, as leaked in a post Friday on yalefml.com, Yale played host to the Yale Security Summit — a three-day conference organized by the Yale Society for the Exploration of Campus Secrets.

    Featured speakers listed on the weekend’s program included:

    Marc Tobias: an “investigative attorney and security specialist,” who has written seven police textbooks including one titled “Locks, Safes, and Security”

    Tobias Bluzmanis: a “professional locksmith” of over 25 years who is now “an expert in Covert Methods of Entry and has developed many unique forms of bypass”

    Matt Fiddler: a certified locksmith and Information Systems Security Professional, his “research into lock bypass techniques have resulted in many public and private disclosures of critical lock design flaws”

    William Tafoya: a University of New Haven professor, with a PhD in criminology who worked with the FBI and later conducted research on the relationship between the internet and crime

    Apparently, Tobias and Bluzmani managed to “compromise the security of Medeco high security locks, which are recognized as the most secure design in the United States.” The pair was scheduled to give a lecture Friday titled “Security Systems: Features and Flaws,” and participate in a workshop Saturday on security challenges. Perhaps luckily for Yale’s own security, this workshop was planned to take place after the campus tour.

    Yet Yale’s locks aren’t the only ones at risk: a student who attended part of the event said Harvard and MIT students participated in the weekend Summit as well.

  9. Revolutionary Communists flyer campus

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    While you were out shopping for classes today, you may have encountered the beginnings of a grassroots Communist Revolution on our very own Elm Street. A spokesperson for the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA, was handing out flyers near the Elm Street gate to Old Campus around 12 p.m.

    “You can’t change the world if you don’t know the BAsics,” the flyers read. “There would be no United States as we know it today without slavery. That is a simple and basic truth.”

    What are “the BAsics,” you ask? Apparently, it the title of a a book written by Bob Avakian, the Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA, which you can order online for $10 plus $3.98 in shipping, handling and tax.

    Great way to subvert the capitalist system by using it.