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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Battle of the Flannel: CANOE and Farm duke it out, viciously and with veggies

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After conducting a series of cloak and dagger style interviews in which no participants agreed to be named, information about the historical relationship between CANOE and Farm Houses has been uncovered.

The Farm/ CANOE House prank wars have a strong historical background as described by zine published in 2011-12 by Farm House. The zine explains the history and beginning of the friendly prank battle, detailing many outrageous events such as a Farm-cooked breakfast, made by students “wearing nothing more than aprons” and delivered shortly after five in the morning to CANOE house residents. The CANOE house was alerted of the breakfast, according to the zine, by students playing live music on the banjo, ukulele, bell and drums at the foot of the stairs.

Other pranks include the stringing up of kitchen utensils on a rope across Lyman Lakes, the reassembling of Farm’s kitchen on the Bald Spot and the gift of a giant pile of rotten tomatoes on the porch of CANOE house. When asked about the tomato prank CANOE wanted to mention that “we don’t entirely accept their version of the story that the pile of rotten tomatoes was a gift.”

The zine also describes a hiatus in the prank wars after a peace was brokered. Although CANOE house residents “can’t confirm or deny whether the hiatus has been broken,” they do not deny the existence of the friendly-feud, although one Farmie did say “characterizing it as a feud would be not quite correct, I think that Farm and CANOE love each other.”

“Its definitely legendary,” one CANOE resident described. “The stories get passed down, the older people tell the younger people about traditions and that’s true for all CANOE things.” The resident’s friend and CANOE inhabitant chimed in to add that this “implies more of a top down approach than really exists; there is an all-around interest and enthusiasm.”

Farm house correspondents agreed that the relationship was not new, elaborating that “it has history, the ancient tomes, the chronicles of Farm house tell of the past friendship with CANOE.”

Both houses emphasized the friendly nature of these pranks. One CANOE member explained the relationship as one of people who “obviously overlap a ton in interests which gives us an excuse to pretend to have differences” saying that many members of the houses are “personally close.”

Farm residents agreed saying that “Farm and CANOE have a kind of spiritual connection, it’s the appreciation for the outdoors, of any two houses Farm and CANOE are the most closely related.” All other correspondents adamantly agreed saying that “We have dinner together at the houses, we definitely do also just enjoy being with each other, we are all just really close friends.”

However, despite this clear friendship, the historical context of the pranking relationship leads to some misunderstandings between the houses especially when members of the house exchange genuine gifts.

In one incident a Farmie “gave them a really nice bucket of sauerkraut, it was really nice, good tasting sauerkraut and I just gave it to them because we had too many gallons of sauerkraut.”

The gift was received with an initially suspicious air from some members of CANOE house because as they explained, “a bucket appeared with brine in it, in the kitchen and it looked like murky water with long things floating in it.”

The CANOE story-teller explained, “I thought that something had just been rotting in our kitchen for a while, then when we heard that it was dropped off by a Farmie, given the historical context that shapes our reality, some people interpreted it as a prank”.

This initial theory was pushed dispelled and they now “think it was a well intentioned gift.” They explained however that “there was also history involved that Farm had once pranked CANOE with giving rotten sauerkraut at a time several years ago, so there was a thought that they were doing that again, which we no longer think.”

Other gifts from CANOE house to Farm have also sometimes been treated with a skeptical eye. “There was one time last year when I left a plate of vegan cookies in Farm house and I received a lot of text messages asking if there was anything wrong with the cookies, even though there has been a history of us giving them legitimate gift,”, one CANOE-er explained.

One Farmie explained that they believed that CANOE often misinterpreted Farm’s gifts. They said “the crux of it [is], we have this really great relationship and we are just trying to get them to see how poetry and friendship works.” Farm says “it’s completely genuine and friendly and there’s nothing else to it.”

The interview with CANOE members also revealed that “there was a rumor that Farm might try to plan their next prank from information gotten by someone from the Carletonian.” If so, I hope this article was useful and would end with the official statement from CANOE house: “we definitely don’t want them to prank us by leaving us brownies or giving us pizza.”


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