By Jessica Jones
Was There Dirty Dancing in Butler Last Sunday? YES

   Most of the time, May at Columbia passes 
predictably, beginning with Orgo Night, 
continuing through the Primal Scream, and 
ending with graduation. There is little to 
no public nudity 
   This year was different.
   Butler denizens enjoyed a unique study 
break Sunday night at 11 p.m. when two 
exotic dancers performed in the College 
Reading Room.
   The man and woman entered respectively 
dressed in a black dress and a police       [What a fantastic and error-free sentence!]
uniform respectively, then stripped. She 
eventually wore just a black bra, panties, 
garters, and heels, while he was left with 
a blue G-string and his nightstick.
   Presumably in tribute to the senior 
class, she had "98" scrawled across her 
chest, one numeral on each breast.
   According to "Jane Doe," an anonymous 
student who helped plan the event, "they 
were supposed to do the full monty but they
got a little nervous when they saw how many 
people were there and they didn't have their 
bodyguards with them."
   Advertised through phone messages and 
word-of-mouth, the event attracted over 750 
people to the library, according to official 
security estimates, Doe said. Students stood 
on tables, clambered up bookshelves, and 
climbed onto the windowsills in order to see 
the performers, who danced in the middle of 
the floor.
   Although no one will publicly claim 
responsibility for the event, "John Smith," 
who knows those involved well, attributed 
the prank to a group including seniors, 
perhaps some juniors, "definitely Columbia 
College students." He described the prank as 
"a last stand before the seniors leave."
   "They started working on it about a week 
before it happened," he said, adding that 
the event involved several logistical 
   "It was pretty complicated as far as 
getting them into the library," Smith 
explained. "I was scared that security was 
going to stop it, because there were a bunch 
of security guards there."
   Doe confirmed that security was a major 
obstacle in planning the event. "It took a 
little coordination outwitting Columbia's 
top-notch security force," she said.
   Anyone who enters the library must show 
Columbia University identification, so the 
conspirators made fake identification cards 
for the strippers.
   Smith and Doe promised "more to come" 
before the end of the school year. While 
they refuse to specify their plans, Doe 
advises students, "Keep your eyes peeled for 
very public displays of affection for 
   In addition to the security problem, the 
conspirators paid a considerable fee, 
although Doe declined to state an amount.
According to several adult entertainment 
agencies, fees for a male and female duo 
range from $275 to $600.
   The prospect of performing for a large 
crowd in a library neither deterred the 
performers nor required a special fee, Doe 
   "They were anxious for the business - you 
know Guilliani's cracking down," she said.
   Last year, another prank occurred at 
Butler during finals that was hotter than 
the strippers, at least in temperature.
   Students set off fireworks from the roof 
of Butler, attracting a crowd of spectators.
   "Steve Brown," who knows the people who 
organized the prank, says that the 
pyrotechnics required considerable 
   "Basically they went to every floor in 
Carman and asked everyone for a dollar. They 
were planning it for months and months," he 
   The coordinators used these donations to 
buy fireworks in New Jersey, Brown said.
   "Then they just told everyone to be in 
front of Butler at midnight," he explained.
   The perpetrators, who were never caught, 
partially inspired the recent Butler 
   Doe said that she and her cohorts wanted 
to "defy what happened last year with the 
   Although fireworks and strippers involve 
considerable cost and preparation, more 
casual pranks often occur at Columbia.
   last month, for example, members of the 
Phi Gamma Delta (Fiji) fraternity allegedly 
dumped paint on seven people from the Pi 
Kappa Alpha (Pika) fraternity house's roof.
Fiji members deny responsibility.
   While Greek organizations occasionally 
play pranks, the Columbia University 
Marching Band (CUMB) has raised tomfoolery 
to a fine art over the last quarter-century. 
The biannual "Orgo Night," which was 
publicized by a suggestive dialogue with the 
"Rolm Phone lady" this semester, only hints 
at CUMB's pranking capabilities.
   "For example, in 1962, we dressed up as 
the Yale Band and woke up Princeton at 6:55 
a.m.," an anonymous band member said, noting 
that the New York Times covered the event.
   "It worked so well that we repeated it 
five years later. In 1967, Columbia played 
at Harvard on the same day Brown played Yale. 
We left for Harvard in the wee hours of the 
morning so we would have time to stop off at 
Brown at 3 a.m. and pretend to be the Yale   [They got Brown and Yale backwards]
Band, and then at Yale at 6 a.m., waking up 
their campus while dressed as the Brown 
Band," he said.
   "Another one of our greatest moments 
occurred at Princeton in the mid-80's. The 
Band managed to get hold of some bright 
yellow plastic bags marked 'RADIOACTIVE.' 
We made up tags for them that said, 'If 
found, call xxx-xxxx immediately.' The phone 
number was either Princeton Security or 
their president or their band or something. 
Then we left the bags all over their campus. 
Needless to say, the telephone lines were 
flooded," the anonymous band member said.
   CUMB's penchant for pranks has caused     [People would come up to us and say,
others to accuse them of pranks they did not  "Those fireworks were GREAT!" and we'd
organize such as year's fireworks as an       be like, "Yeah they were, but we
example.				      didn't do it," and they'd be like, "Oh,
   The merry band prankster encourages 	      i get it. Nudge nudge, wink wink."]
others to participate in Columbia's prank 
   "They're a great thing to do and they     [Just for the record, they've got their
don't harm anyone. As long as it continues    sources mixed up - we never said that]
to be that way, just keep on doing them," 
he said.