Hot Prowls and Unsubscribe-List-This: Stanford 2011 Year in Review

Posted by at 2:55PM

Yeah, that's about right.

A predominantly factual, occasionally satiric reflection on the crazy year that was 2011.


  • After a record 11-1 season, Stanford Football continues to dominate in its 40-12 romp over Virginia Tech.  The almost banned Band celebrates with a party on the beach as hundreds of students ditch the first day of Winter Quarter.
  • Beloved quarterback Andrew Luck proceeds to solidify his Stanford hero status by deciding to forgo the NFL draft and finish his Stanford career.  Arrillaga scraps plans for the fifth on-campus gym to construct an edifice in Luck’s honor.
  • Confusion, fear, and panic, but mostly confusion grips the campus as Stanford Police fervently warns the entire student population of a Hot Prowl via mass text alert system.  As is the case with most current events on campus, “Hot Prowl” quickly becomes a popular party theme.
  • To add to campus confusion, mid-January brings mid-60’s and sunshine.

Also offered starting spring: Math 2 / Music 4B: Days of the Week in Modern Song


  • Based on the popularity of hit single “Friday,” the Office of the Registrar introduces Phil 240: Front Seat / Back Seat: Existential Determinism in the Age of Rebecca Black
  • Valentine’s Day week heralds the annual V-week and the sale of chocolate va-jay-jays.  Despite promoters’ claims to the contrary, the student population remains convinced that “V” stands for very-awkward.


  • Rogue reporters “out” Stanford athletes through sensational reporting in a Stanford Daily article on “The List.”  Student-athletes respond: “dude, you could’ve just picked up a copy if you ever went to the gym.”  Professors respond: “don’t misquote me, bro.”
  • Kappa Sig loses its housing, and fratstars adopt a hunter-gatherer lifestyle, scavenging social entrepreneurship mixers and RA candy bowls for subsistence.
  • Bill Nye the Science Guy graces the halls of Stanford, generating more fanfare than Bill Gates and the Cataracs (though I admit that’d be an awesome name for a band) put together.  Ms. Frizzle plans a visit for 2012.
  • Stanford men’s swimming wins its 30th consecutive Pac-10 championship.  In other news, Stanford Hospital completes its first successful gill-removal surgery.

Revelers participate in the Stanford spring festival.


  • Embracing Stanford’s hippie tradition, Stanford students choose to tie-dye their entire BODIES!!  Just kidding, that’s paint from the Asha Holi Festival on Sand Hill Fields.
  • Fear once again grips the campus as students find themselves on constant lookout for Indian men smelling like apples.
  • The great mailing list fail of 2011 (see also: “unsubscribe-list-this“) proves that, given an audience of thousands, Stanford students choose to post dozens of videos of silly cats and zero profanities.  My faith in humanity is restored.
  • Perez Hilton visits campus.  Hilton’s tweets on the visit: 37.  Stanford students in attendance: 8.
  • ASSU elections come and go.  The Wellness Room is still doing well.

Ah, the semi-charmed Stanford life....


  • ‘The annual 680 Lomita Exotic party committee runs out of words that rhyme with “exotic” and opts for more direct marketing.  “Sweaty, Partially Naked People” is a great success.  Or at least people think it was.  Most don’t remember.
  • The International Hide and Seek champion is finally apprehended in Pakistan.  Osama bin Laden’s death is heralded with fountain hopping and “America, F*** Yeah” blaring from freshman dorms.
  • Third Eye Blind hosts a free concert.  Excited to reclaim their youth, Stanford students show up in droves with Beanie Babies and Giga Pets.

Happy fountain hoppers.


  • Pre-finals frenzy inspires a pillow fight on the Quad.  Senior night on the Quad chooses to interpret the ankle-deep feathers as decorative ground adornments.
  • Another class of Stanford seniors graduates, checks out the job market… and promptly decides to coterm.
  • Stanford Athletics wins its 17th Directors’ Cup, which is so routine that nobody notices.
  • The usual hordes of pre-pubescent overachievers swarm Stanford as all manner of kids’ camps descend upon campus.  Dislocated from their usual fountain habitat, real Stanford students seek shelter in the library.  With child prodigies in Bob and the former Kappa Sig, not even the Row is safe from name games and awkward bonding activities.

Happily FOUND.


  • The international Stanford community shows its strength when social media helps to find Stanford student Jacob Boehm in Malaysia within 24 hours of his disappearance.  See, it really is a Stanford family.
  • Other universities start school.  Stanford students celebrate over a month left of summer break.
  • An ASSU email announcing the new E2.0 initiative draws criticism from women’s groups across campus.  E2.0 is abandoned within 24 hours.  #efficiency
  • Steve Jobs passes away, and makeshift homages spring up around campus and outside the Palo Alto Apple Store.  MemChu hosts his top-secret memorial service later in the month.
  • Stanford’s fledgling Occupy movement sets up shop by Dinkespiel.
  • Vigilante justice shows its stripes at the two roundabouts by the Circle of Death.
  • Stanford proposes a $2.5 billion New York City campus, but later rescinds the offer in December.

Rolling out before dark, Stanford students show their Cardinal pride at College GameDay.


Shake it, shake it, shake it, shake it, vent it, yeah!!


  • Stanford Chemistry TAs remind us of the importance of eye wash stations.  What has been seen cannot be unseen.
  • The campus enters siege mode as students descend into finals season.  We’re studious and we know it.
  • Stanford drops its NYC campus bid.  Goodbye snow, hello palm trees!
  • Who cares if Andrew Luck didn’t win the Heisman?  He’s been named by ESPN as “the top quarterback prospect to come along in the past 30 years, a once-in-a-generation player almost guaranteed to become an immediate star at the next level.”  Screw Superman socks.  We still love ya, Andrew.
  • The football team heads to Arizona to prep for the Fiesta Bowl.  Goooo Cardinal!!


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