Not all housing day videos are created equal. After Kirkland’s Housing Committee took down several of their Beyoncé-themed 2014 Housing Day videos due to inappropriate material, upperclassmen turned in a different aesthetic direction to give the Class of 2017 an idea of what they can expect should they be placed in Kirkland come next Thursday.
In a video entitled “We Didn’t Start the Kirkland,” created by Kirkland House residents Brian J. Mendel ‘15, Ian B. Nightingale ‘15, and current Crimson FM chair Petey E. Menz ‘15, the creators can be heard crooning sweet harmonies to the tune of “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” by Billy Joel. The visuals keep pace with a steady beat as a PowerPoint presentation rapidly transitions from one slide to another using the classic “cube” transition. Impressively, the video even features some virtual animated fire as the vocalists sing a chorus of “We didn’t start the Kirkland / It was always Kirkland / since the world went Kirkland.”
When asked about the video’s origins, Mendel said that “no one asked us to make it. Actually we made another video last year called ‘Tastes Like Kirkland House,’ but probably no one saw it because we spelled Kirkland wrong, just like this year.”
Last year’s video, entitled “KIKRLAND HOUSING DAY OFFICIAL 2013,” is adapted from the song “Tastes like Wonton Soup” by Lil B. As for their inspiration, Mendel said that he, Nightingale, and Menz noted that “what a housing video really entails is picking a song and changing the lyrics to be about the house in question. So we took this formula to its logical conclusion, by changing all of the words to the name of our house.”
Not to be outdone, on March 8 another group of students published “HASTILY MADE KIRKLAND HOUSING DAY VIDEO,” a forty-five second musical ditty praising the, ahem, less recognized aspects of Kirkland House. The video features expert camera zooms and iMovie transitions, as the vocalists harmonize to lyrics like “Come on down to Kirkland House everyone / Take a look at both of our trash cans… Who the f**k still uses a red phone / Take a Crimson to use in the bathroom.”
One of its creators, Wyatt N. Troia ‘14 (who is affiliated with Winthrop house, but lives off campus at the Sigma Chi fraternity house), wrote in an email, “After their first videos caused such controversy, the Kirkland HoCo reached out to ask me to create a new housing day video for them. I was honored and surprised, considering that I am not in Kirkland and had no experience making housing day videos. Though I'm a Winthropian, I'd never turn down a House in need, and just hope I did Kirkland justice.”