Say goodbye to political bickering as we know it. Put aside those law books and clear out of Langdell's stuffy stacks. Harvard Law School students are getting ready to rumble.
Highlighted by a potential monster truck extravaganza and a free flow of beer, the Monster Truck Coalition--a five-member group of Harvard Law School Council representatives--is trying to add levity to law school life.
"We are trying to inject humor into a group of students who were taking themselves too seriously," says Monster Trucker Josh Frieman, a second-year law student.
"The council is out of touch with what students want and need. It's too busy trying to save the world," says second-year Christopher L. "Kit" Ekman '92, another of the pioneers.
Last spring's election for council president, won by Enu A. Mainigi, "turned a lot of people off" of council politics, says third-year Henry D. "Hank" Fincher, a third-year student who has been on the council since his first year.
Second-year student and Trucker leader William E. "Buzzsaw" Growney Jr. originated the idea for the coalition last year when he was fed up with the council's politics.
The coalition was "a whimsical reaction to an egotistical council," says Fincher, who is not a Trucker but has been termed by Growney as the "grand-daddy of the Monster Truck Coalition."
"They ran a great parody of the election process," Fincher says. "We all got very serious about [the election], and they made fun of it...Nothing keeps you on your toes like satire."
Last year, Growney lived on the same floor as two of the other Truckers, Shea T. "Shovelhead" Moxon and Kit "Captain Crunch" Ekman. They joined to form the Coalition with "Big Daddy" Frieman, who had been an undergraduate along with Growney at the University of California at Berkeley.
The idea for the coalition actually began at a fraternity at Berkeley as a joke party for the Associated Students of the University of California, the school's student government.
Frieman worked in student government at Berkeley but was not a member of the schools' Monster Truck Coalition. Growney was not involved in politics while at Berkeley.
"They had a much funnier platform at Cal," Frieman said. "They wanted to turn the library into a casino."
The Law School's version of Truckers ran for seats on the council on a two-plank platform of holding a monster truck rally and serving beer at all law school events.
"Students want beer and monster trucks on campus," says Shovelhead Moxon, a second-year law student. "Since the election, we've been asked almost daily when the monster trucks are arriving."
In the election, the four Truckers were all victorious. A fifth Trucker was voted onto the council this week during first-year elections.