Carleton College's student newspaper since 1877

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

What really happens at Carletonian meetings

<lock strikes midnight. A full moon is out. A wolf howls, the sound echoing for miles past Northfield.

Thirty or so students, all draped in black capes, assemble into Sayles 210. In order to enter the room, each one of them must mutter the password in Vlingendawn, the language of the Carletonian that absolutely nobody outside the staff knows about. A staff member revealing this language to an outsider is grounds for the death penalty.

Once everyone gets into the room, the process really begins. The real laboratory for the paper is in the trap door above the light fixtures in the main room. Staff members must climb all the way up, still wearing their slippery capes, in order to access the door. The greatest cause of death among staff is falling during this process. On this particular night, the lives of three more staff members are lost in the process.
Now the survivors are all safely inside the trap door laboratory. The room is pitch black. Spiders, rodents and ghosts call this place home as well.

They gather around a massive cauldron. The editors-in-chief extend their fingers, which causes the cauldron to fill with journalistic liquid, a green and gooey mixture.

“Comrades,” one of the chiefs says, in Vlingendawn of course. “What must we write about this week to make the daily lives of Carls an absolute living hell?”

“I have a question,” the news editors states. “Are we looking to get a small rant about us in the Clap, or an overwhelming hatred of us by much of the student body?”

“Good question,” the other chief replies. “We will discuss that later. But for now let’s just come up with stories.”

The features editor bows, an action that is expected of staff before suggesting a story. “Let’s write about our support for security when they break up parties.”

“Excellent!” a chief exclaims while striking the journalistic liquid. Every time the chiefs accept a story, the liquid boils a little bit more.  The sports editor does the bows. “I propose a story where we discuss the importance of the varsity teams for Carleton.”

The chiefs both growl in anger. “You clearly do not understand what the Carletonian stands for,” they say. “We are sorry, but we must exile you.” Using their magical powers, the chiefs shoot the sports editor out the window, a very painful way to end.

Once this editor is gone and forgotten about, the remaining staff gets back to work. Everyone suggests at least one story. Some are accepted. Others are thrown in the same direction as the sports editor. In total, four staff members are exiled that night. At the end of the meeting, all the staff, still standing in their circle around the cauldron as they have been doing this whole time, twirl their fingers in an increasingly aggressive manner. They do this until the journalistic liquid is fully boiled.

“Alright comrades,” one of the chiefs announces. “Now is the time to chant.”

In unison, they chant, “We, as comrades of the Carletonian, intend to write stories that curse the Carleton community and fail to reflect general campus opinions.” The chanting goes on nonstop for the next ten minutes.

The chiefs bow, which indicates the end of the meeting. One by one, staff members exit the office, each returning to their separate chambers underground, as the Carletonian staff does not live in regular dorms.

Once the sun rises, new issues of the Carletonian appear in Sayles, angering much of the student body for various reasons. All staff members are thrilled, as they have successfully followed their mission.

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