Most students believe house spirit has diminished over the last four years.
When the Class of 1997 arrived on campus, the seniors--the last class to have ordered choice in the housing lottery--reminisced about the good old days when Adams was really weird and Eliot was really snooty. Now this year's seniors whine that full randomization is erasing any last vestige of house character.
Then there's Cabot--where things are a little bit different. Three years ago, it didn't have much of a house identity. But now Cabot is the Intramural house. Cabot has a dynasty.
Cabot House has won the Straus Cup, awarded to the most successful intramural program, three years in a row, and the last two weren't even close.
But winning isn't the only thing that makes Cabot's teams different. Cabot House has an A-league football theme song, and its intramural devotees fondly recall a night of triumph dubbed "The Night of the Apocalypse".
What happened to this part of the Quad?
Three years ago, a man interested in sports named Billy Weitzel came to Cabot as a tutor. At the same time, the incoming sophomore class was particularly interested in recreational athletics.
Beginning in the fall of 1994, the Class of 1997 went to and won a lot of games, and Cabot eked out Leverett to wrest the Straus Cup from Mather. Weitzel started to get excited. The House Masters got excited, even building a trophy case for the cup.
Then all hell broke loose.
The next year, Cabot came within 100 points of being the first house to earn 2,000 Straus Cup points, demolishing Leverett by 567 points. Weitzel began to put together house-wide IM pep rallies twice a year, featuring pizza, free t-shirts and Homeric epic epithets for outstanding performances.
This season? Suffice it to say that Cabot printed t-shirts that said "Straus Cup Champions: 1994-95, 1995-96, 1996-97." The prophesy came true.
"It just caught sophomore year," says senior Tracey Cho, Cabot's intramural representative for the past two years. "I think we won more on participation. We were the only house that it could be an hour before the game and you could call people up and they'd drop whatever they were doing and come out to play."
The brunt of the support came from the Class of '97, from people like Cho, Chris Sue-Ling, Chris Nicholson, Brian Algra, Ioannis Dosios, Sunny Wang, Hahrie Han, Sheldon Reid and Herman Sanchez. Nicholson and Cho were the IM reps this year, but all these people came to many a game.
"I would say that [the seniors] have been fueling the drive," Weitzel says. "They are a really special class because there's such a large group of people that come out."