Harvard Acronyms, Meet the Real World

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Harvard operates in acronyms, and sometimes it feels like our sentences are mostly just letters: "HUDS is going to send me to UHS" or "My PAF is my TF in my SLS class!" It's like our own secret language, and also helpful when we're too lazy to actually say Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding. However, people who aren't familiar with the jargon could get confused. Here are some alternatives to our beloved and well known letters, from the real world.

HUD(s): Heads-Up Display

This might be familiar to those gamers out there. Turns out it refers to the way that video games display the characters to the players: from above their heads. Like when you're playing Mario Karts and you can see the back of Yoshi/Bowser/Toad's head. That.

IOP: Inanimate Objects Party

You may think this is a party theme where attendants dress up like lamps and carpets, but apparently it's a political party from Rennsaelear Polytechnic Institute in upstate New York. Some candidates that have run are an inflatable whale named Arthur Galpin and an albino squirrel. We'd totally vote for them.

OEB: Olde English Bulldogge

At Harvard, these letters typically stand for Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, but sometimes it also means Olde English Bulldogge (the e's are necessary). Does this slobbery dog with a smushed face and major underbite have any similarities to OEB concentrators?

VES: Voluntary Euthanasia Society

Our visual and environmental studies concentration also shares an acronym with the Voluntary Euthanasia Society—maybe a concentrator could make a film noir reflection on this similarity?

TF: Totally F**ked

Teaching fellow is such a pretentious way to describe the job every other school in the country calls a TA. Why fellow? Why does Harvard love that word? Peer Advising Fellow, Teaching Fellow…what's so wrong with peer advisor? Or teaching assistant? In any case, it seems strangely appropiate that another meaning of those two infamous letters was all the rage in the early 1970s, when TF was a sly way of saying "totally f**ked." We recommend trying both in one sentence! "Thanks to my unhelpful TF, I'm TF for my final."

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