Just when the world was ready to label Harvard’s clout diminished, its expansion in Allston stalled, a stunning move has occurred: The university has absorbed Johns Hopkins—for this week, at least.
Having been rejected by Harvard, filmmakers of “The Social Network”—an upcoming film based on the founding of Facebook—went to another campus to shoot where they thought they might find rejected students who could empathize: Johns Hopkins University. Instead, however, JHU students are upset that their dormitories are being relabeled “Kirkland House,” a move that has reopened the wounds of their college admission days, they say.
Students in Baltimore may complain, but they fail to recognize the exciting opportunities that recreating Harvard on their campus will bring. Hopkins students now have a perfect excuse to don their preppiest Ivy League clothing, complete with a different cardigan, pipe, and protractor for each day. Maybe a few job recruiters will get confused and show up in Maryland also.
We hope that students take advantage of this week and resubmit their midterm papers and grades to benefit from what surely will be a weeklong bonanza in grade inflation. Parties may take a serious hit, of course, as well as Greek life—but for the long term, students will benefit from this momentary lapse in fun. A week of self-loathing and sexual frustration as Harvard students can do much for Hopkins’s school spirit for the rest of the year. Of course, we sympathize with their athletic teams who may see a sudden drop in fan attendance this week.
We at old Harvard can do our own part to make this the best possible experience for our new classmates in Baltimore. Aside from sending them punch cards and invitations to Mather Lather, more serious infrastructural moves can be made. The shuttles being mustered for Harvard-Yale should immediately begin transferring all tourists in Harvard Yard to Baltimore. Crimson Key should also do its part and send members immediately to our Maryland campus to help orient students who are upset and confused, having been placed in the new Quad. Finally, in a showing of good faith, we should invite “The Wire,” a popular TV show based in Baltimore, to film an episode up in Cambridge—where we pretend to be Johns Hopkins.
Grab your crimson, Hopkins brothers and sisters! For one week, the keys to the ivory tower are yours. Make the most of it, and we will forgive you if it takes you a while to name the flaws of the John Harvard statue. Go ahead and pee on any statues you like, though. The real losers in this are, of course, the students of Yale University, who will find it troubling, if not overwhelming, to now know that another Harvard has popped up to make them feel inadequate.