The Chair of Director
THEY CAME FROM a far off and heathen wasteland to the north of fair Cambridge. A rabble-rousing band of fierce knights, they were known throughout the kingdom for their green complexions and hairy palms. Their maidens were robust and buxom and could quaff a barrel of ale with scarcely a burp. These were the Green Meanies of Hanover.
In a cloud of dust, they rode through Ye Olde Square. They came to rape and pillage fair Cambridge, and to challenge the knights of King Joseph's Varsity Table. And most of all, these lusty and lecherous disgraces to chivalry came seeking the Crimson maidens, the damsels of too-tight tunics and too-short skirts, the leaders of cheer in the court of King Joseph.
On noble chestnut and white steeds, the Green Meanies approached the fateful Bridge of Sir Anderson. In all the kingdom, this bridge was known as a great obstacle, the final gateway into King Joseph's Court. An evil mixture of tar and stone, the bridge spanned the ferocious waters of King Charles' Rivers, Violent eddies and gurgling whirlpools waited below.
The Green Meanies crossed most of the way over Sir Anderson when they met the keeper of the bridge. He was gnarled and hunchbacked, with a great beard that dragged along the ground. He had but one eye, and a hook where his right hand should have been. He carried a mammoth spiked club and wore the skins of diverse and many beasts that he had ripped from their backs with his bare hands. He was known only as Kob, and was the great mystery of the kingdom.
As the Green Meanies approached, one of the lustiest and most stout of the pack stepped forward and said to Kob, "Keeper of the bridge, let us pass."
Kob snarled and beat a passing panther to death with his left forearm. Then he said, in a squeaky voice, "First, my alcoholic squire, you must answer three questions. Where did your father go to school?"
"UCLA," said the knight. And with that, the bridge opened up, casting the knight into the rushing waters below. Kob laughed heartily.
The next knight approached and again conversed with Kob. But this warrior said his father went to Princeton. And Kob snarled, but the bridge remained whole.
"What kind of shoes do you wear on feast days?" Kob asked.
"Hush puppies," said the knight, and he, too, was cast into the river.
And then a huge and large knight on the most fierce black horse there ere was strutted to the front. His armor was a bright puke green, and shone like an emerald in the sun. His armor was a bright puke green, and shone like an emerald in the sun. His lance was as long as his sword was sharp, and his shield bore the emblem of a mug. He was known as the Knight of Delta Pi Epsilon.
He answered Kob's first two questions without incident, saying his father was from Brown and he wore Topsiders on feast days. Then the bridgekeeper eyed him sharply and said, "What will you contribute to my Fund Drive?"
And with that, the immense knight drew his sword and sliced off Kob's head cleanly where the neck meets the shoulders. And the head rolled to the side as the hunchback flailed his arms, which the knight sliced away--one at a time. And so the Green Meanies could pass over the bridge.
All this time, in the Court of King Joseph, the Knights of the Varsity Table had been sporting in various and sundry ways. They amused themselves with games of backgammon and dice, and partook of prodigious feats and shared great pleasures with the maidens, though we cannot speak here of the nature of those pleasures, except to say they were the most enjoyable delights imaginable.
And there was, in the Court, many great and famous knights, known throughout many lands for their play in tournaments, and their chivalry, and nobleness, and courage. Most of all, there was St. John of Burke, the eldest and wisest of all the knights. But St. John was downcast this day, and his heart was not with him. It had been claimed by another, a fair damsel now captured by the Green Meanies. And St. John had sought this maiden, fighting many a battle and slaying many a knight while chasing her. But he had been beaten in his last fight. knocked from his horse by The Knight of Delta Pi Epsilon. And St. John was disgraced, for he had hurt his knee and lost his horse. And now his love. Lady Grizzelda, was being held captive by the Green Meanies.
And in the middle of this serene day for most of King Joseph's Court, the Green Meanies came riding in, surrounded by clouds of dust and many foul odors. And The Knight of Delta Pi Epsilon, also called Brooklyn, led the pack, riding up to King Joseph himself. And this bold mass of green bellowed. "Greetings, lusty cuckold. Thou hast the sorriest bunch of knights in all the ivy land. And we, the animals from Hanover who pervert the name of chivalry and take the memory of Arthur in vain, do challenge you to a tournament."
And King Joseph laughed. "Double slot left, split wing trap right. I-36, X-89 on four," Joseph said, for he spoke only a strange tongue that was not known in the land. But he was wise, or so they said.
Irving of Brooklyn turned from the king somewhat baffled and spoke to St. John. And so the challenge was accepted, and the knights went to separate sides of the great field. It was a vast plain with great wooden and stone stands. And all the maidens crowded the seats, while the knights donned their armor.
From one side came King Joseph's knights; from the other, the Green Meanies. And in the middle, when they met, there was great excitement and crashes that sounded like thunder. And from the top-most bench, surrounded by many brutal and ugly Hanover maidens, sat Lady Grizzelda, crying for St. John. And one by one on the field, the knights fell from their horses. The rushes were so great that lances would splinter when they crashed with a shield. And blood streamed from everywhere, as the knights swung their swords with such violence that they cut through the armor clear to the skin.
But soon, there were only two knights still on horses, though bodies lay all around. And St. John glared at Irving, and neither had shield nor lance. But they rushed at each other and swung their swords so hard that they both fell from the horses; and both animals fell dead. But the two knights jumped up, and they delivered such blows to each other that they were soon both covered in blood. And the minstrels of King Joseph's Court played all the while, and the people threw eggs at them. And St. John, almost exhausted from such battle, took one great swing that hit Irving of Brooklyn where the helmet joins his shoulders, and it cut through his neck and sliced his head clean off. And so the battle ended, and the maidens cheered. And Lady Grizzelda ran from her seat, for St. John had freed her. And St. John had regained his honor and the honor of the Court.
And soon, the Kingdom's scribes came to count the bodies so they could record the battle in the histories of the Court. And they counted that King Joseph's men had killed 26,000, while the Green Meanies had killed but 10,000. But in the writing there was a mistake made, so the only record we now have of this great battle is one line: "Harvard 26, Dartmouth 10." And no one is sure what it means. And that is all there is of the story. And if someone tells you more. it is lies.
The Chretien de Troyes Ivy predictions:
YALE at COLUMBIA--New York may well default after this one: Yale, 41-4.
COLGATE at PRINCETON--About as much interest here as watching the ERG machine down at Newell: Princeton, 17-10.
CORNELL at BROWN--Finally, some excitement in Providence; but Saturday night they'll be cooking Bruin stew: Cornell, 27-21.