The Yale Daily News was left feeling "pretty blue" yesterday when pranksters from Cornell University swiped all of Friday's issues and replaced them with parodies.
To Yalie editors arriving at their offices early yesterday morning, all seemed normal until the office manager--who is not a student--realized that the Dailies had been pilfered.
Soon afterward, the quick-witted staff learned that parodies of the Daily had been distributed to student mailboxes in place of the authentic newspapers.
According to Daily Editor-in-Chief Tom Geier, the staff was "frantic" until a careful study of the parody revealed that the Cornell Daily Sun was the perpetrator.
The Yalies reacted to the information with characteristic swagger.
"For some reason Cornell imagines that there's a Cornell-Yale rivalry," said Daily Managing Editor Andrew Wexton. "I mean--The Cornell Daily Sun--who the hell are they?"
By 10:30 a.m., Daily editors managed to contact the Cornell lampooners, who were in New Haven for this weekend's Yale-Cornell football game, and the stolen originals were returned 30 minutes later, said Wexton.
Geier professed himself "pretty happy that the real papers were eventually distributed" He said that all but about 100 of the parodies were successfully retrieved from student mailboxes before they were read.
According to Matthew Rubins, the Sun's business manager, the Cornell paper had been planning the prank for "quite some time."
Rubins said that Associate Editor Sam Zia-Zarifi had visited the Yale Daily's offices several weeks ago on the pretense of learning about its production process, in supposed preparation for a possible change in the Sun's format.
But the Sun staff used the information Zia-Zarifi learned about the way the Daily was put together to create an accurate imitation, Rubins said. The reproductions were convincing enough to pass by at least one Yale Daily staffer undetected, Geier said.
Rubins said that the parody was done "in the spirit of good fun and intercollegiate rivalry." He added that "so far [Daily staff members] have been good sports."
But Wexton did not reflect on the experience with such equanimity. He charged that in stealing the real Dailies, the Cornellians may have "violated several laws."
"We don't mind a good parody, when it is addition to the real paper," said Wexton.
While admitting that the Daily had been duped by the hoax, Geier said the student paper would have to rely on Yale's football squad to settle the score with the Big Red.
"The Big Red of Cornell made us feel pretty blue, but it takes more than quick-wittedness to beat our Blue in football," Geier said.