Harvard’s Hidden Economic Drain

Forget about iPhones—red phones are all the rage

It is clear that the economy is struggling when even Harvard University, the Lil’ Wayne of higher education, has to make budget cuts. Having seen the pains of these cuts across our campus, Prestige and Mobility decided to put on our investigative “journalist” caps/jumpsuits and get to the bottom of this. [1]

Of course, Chiappini had once stood on top of the world of investigative journalism as the New York Times’s society columnist for Teddy Bear Picnics. That was until Bilotti revealed that Chiappini had been writing laudatory articles in order to secure invitations to the most exclusive Teddy Bear Picnics. Needless to say, his funding was cut.

We went looking for “the scoop” around University Hall. We tried to keep our ears to the pavement—you gotta hit the sidewalk if you want “the dirt!” We even crashed a luncheon, trying to get “the dish.” After following all of our “leads,” we ended up in a professor’s office decorated with Lisa Frank posters, but it turned out that Harvey Mansfield was a dead “end” as well.

Eventually, an anonymous source in University Hall told us just what Our Queen Drew Faust was up to. Apparently, the University’s greatest expense is its enormous phone bill. In response Our Queen Drew Faust, as part of her overall plan to eliminate undergraduate happiness, will soon order all students to “donate” their cell phone minutes to the University and only use their University-issued red phones for the remainder of their college careers. [2]

Where are all these minutes going? Well, the “crack” team of Prestige and Mobility have the answer. First, the majority of minutes go to Registrar Barry S. Kane for his many 1-900 calls to the “Pokemon Snap” tip line. [4] Many of the minutes obviously go to Prof. Michael Sandel and his attempts to redeem his Joe Camel points and finally get the leather jacket he’s been pining for—what utility! Over in Littauer, Prof. Greg Mankiw still manages to rack up several hours on the ol’ “electronic” banana with vaunted capitalist Scrooge McDuck. [5]

It is also in every faculty member’s contract that they receive a minimum of three congratulatory phone calls from Our Queen Drew Faust. “Hey Prof. Michael Herzfeld. I love what you’re doing on ‘social poetics.’ You’ve made it to Harvard. You can do anything!” “Hey Prof. Sarah Jansen! I love what you’re doing on dogs and how we know them! You’re improving humanity with every paw you ask for! You’re important! You’re at the top of your field!” “Hey Registrar Barry S. Kane! Damnnnnnn. I mean, damnnnnnn. Delicious.”

For those who are complaining about the red phones, remember the examples of your forefathers. FDR had the first red phone, though he rarely used it, preferring instead to walk to a friend’s room to chat. Chief Justice John G. Roberts and his blockmates often “judged” girls over his red phone, issuing his famous dissenting opinion in the case of Mediocre Asian Girl v. Learned Hand (1975). Mark Zuckerberg invented Facebook after too many girls hung up on him when he called to ask for their hometowns, dates of birth, and “favorite interests.” Most famously, while simultaneously dating two “cubanas” in an elite female final club, JFK accidentally telephoned the wrong one, sparking the epic catfight and subsequent standoff known to historians as the “Cuban Miscall Isis.”

A common concern among students is that they will only be able to call other Harvard affiliates. Well, what need do you have for people who didn’t get into Harvard? We’re your family now, united by a love of money, high SAT scores, and a lifelong insecurity complex that seeks a confirmation of status and worth that could never be found in the arms of a parent or friend. You’ll die alone, but you’ll die snuggled inside a quilted Harvard afghan and you’ll be buried with your class ring—until marauding bands of grave robbers snap it from your decaying finger. But seriously kids, use those red phones.



[1] For embroidery and pricing, call 3-2126.

[2] Harvard’s plan to eliminate all fun also includes the following programs: cable TV, party grants, the Girl Talk fiasco, inviting Insane Clown Posse to YardFest 2009, appropriating Nazi gold, not admitting any hot girls, the Lamont Burrito Disaster of 2005, lethargic calendar reform, Vanserg, serving squash at 78.3 percent of meals, and the Core.[3]

[3] This is the longest footnote in Crimson history.

[4] It is so tough to get that perfect shot of Mewtwo.

[5] Duckberg IS long-distance!