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MIT student blogger Snively '11


Didja catch the reference?

On March 1st, this was posted on the MIT ’12 Facebook discussion board:

On March 5th I received an e-mail from Tamara ’12.

Hey Snively! So, you want a fun activity to blog about (since we all know a good blog is the only reason to even wake up in the morning ;) ), go to the Boston pillow fight! Apparently there’s some sort of pillow fight craziness going on in like 20 cities around the world… and it sounds like just the crazy thing you’d have fun at :)

This paragraph was followed by all of the important details, which mentioned that the pillow fight would be happening on March 22nd in Copley Square.

“Hm,” I thought, “wouldn’t it be cool if these things happened together?”

I wandered over to the Facebook group to throw the idea out there but lo’ and behold, Caroline ’11 had already suggested it and *BOOM*, the meetup was scheduled around the pillow fight. While I’m not a prefrosh, I do enjoy a good pillow fight every now and again, so I thought I’d drop by and beat on some prefrosh. Also, campus was likely to empty out during Spring Break so a pillow fight could help to pass the time. I invited Michelle ’11 to come along too since we both would be staying at MIT over the break (flights to Oregon are expensive).

March 22nd came and Michelle and I loaded up our backpacks with pillows. I brought a video camera and a digital camera as well (I’m a blogger, it’s what I do). We took the red line to Downtown Crossing and then hopped on the Orange Line to Haymarket. We popped out onto street level and looked around for prefrosh. None. We headed towards Dunkin’ Donuts for some hash browns and saw a girl with an MIT sweatshirt on.

“Michelle, see that sweatshirt? That’s a prefrosh! Quick, go into prefrosh mode!”

You see, Michelle and I had this plan to pretend we were prefrosh and see how long it would take the ’12s to notice. We wandered into line and stood behind the girl in the sweatshirt. Michelle and I just stood there, casually chatting, when the girl turned around and asked “Are you Michael Snively?”

So much for pretending to be a prefrosh.

It turns out that the girl was Allison ’12 and, like us, had totally misjudged how long it would take to arrive by T, meaning we were all about 15 minutes early. As we grabbed our hash browns and coffee we headed outside to wait for some more people to arrive.

Arrive they did, and soon we had a group of 11 people gathered:

Yours truly


We set off for Modern Pastry, but not after I made sure we had a map, because it’s really easy to get lost in Boston. Our destination was to be Modern Pastry, which we found with relative ease (only got lost twice).

Oh! I know why we’re going the wrong direction! We’re on the wrong side of the street!

Unfortunately it was packed and there was no room for us. We decided to find somewhere else to eat, which we also found with relative ease (only got lost once). We decided on a small little convenience store which served pizza and subs next to an outdoor market.

From front to back: Bassil, Michelle, Xiaoli, Andy, Jean, Paul

After scarfing we headed towards Copley for the pillow fight. This was also done with relative ease (lost only once) and along the way we found a truck that was giving out free Monster energy drinks. Full of food and full of caffeine we arrived at Copley an hour before the fight was scheduled to begin. We took that opportunity to chat about MIT, tell personal stories, and laugh at various people we saw walking around.

Left to Right: Allison, Xiaoli, and Linley

Left to Right: Jean, Andy, Bassil

Left to Right: Craig, Paul, Lauren, Michelle

Suddenly these two random ladies with backpacks on their chests walked up.

“Hey guys! Would you like some free Vitamin Water energy drinks!?”

We all looked at our half-empty (and free) Monster energy drinks and then gaged how much more crap we could fit in our stomachs . . . .


To prove that they were doing their jobs, the girls had to take our picture while we held the energy drinks. As you can see, I’m slightly confused by the whole thing.

I’m the only new one in this picture, I’m sporting my new red hoodie

As 2 o’clock (H-hour for the pillow fight) neared we began seeing signs that massive carnage was about to take place.

Reporters never mean good news

We think Jean may have had a rock instead of a pillow

Seriously, should I be worried?

All of a sudden a masked man with a huge flag ran into the middle of the field and there was an uproar from the crowd. A siren went off and we ran like wild animals into the fray. Michelle stood back safely and caught the entire scene on film, which I have reduced to 43 seconds of mayhem

We all survived the onslaught, even getting some really solid hits in (I leveled at least one person and still have the black face paint on my pillow to prove it). For some reason though I lost my ability to breathe like a normal human being and began gasping painfully for air. No more pillow fight for me! We all left the park thoroughly pillowed out. We hopped the T back to MIT so we could explore The COOP. On the T we noticed an interesting flaw in a Harvard based ad. Can you spot the mistake?

We started losing members of our group as we got off the T and left The COOP. The remaining prefrosh were led on a super-special tour of Burton-Conner by Michelle and I (I say super-special because it makes me feel better about the fairly un-interesting tour I helped lead). After wandering the dorm a bit Michelle and I wished the pre-frosh happy travels and sent them on their way, making them promise to all come to CPW.

Thus ends the Boston Admitted Students Meetup/Pillow Fight 2008. It was a blast, I’m really glad I went. For those of you who won’t have the opportunity to go to an admitted students meetup, don’t worry. I didn’t get to go to any when I was in high school, this was actually my first. You’ll get plenty of chances to do all sorts of neat things once you’re at MIT. And so, with that, I say goodbye. It is approaching bed time and I have an exciting day of (checks calender) absolutely nothing to do tomorrow. Maybe I’ll play Worms: A Space Odyssey? Yeah, that sounds like a good idea . . .

53 responses to “AND THERE WAS A PILLOW FIGHT!!!”

  1. Isshak says:

    OMG I just saw the video, this is MADNESS ! I love it ! Is this happening every year ?

  2. Steven says:

    I caught the reference. That is a good movie

  3. Becky '12 says:

    That was my general reaction to the whole post–it sounds like CRAZY fun, and I wish I could have been there. I figured it beat saying “first.” But I DID want the first post, so rather than taking the time to type “Becky ’12” I just wrote my initials.

  4. Viva says:

    i love the video!
    and the number (1-888-LIKE-SLEEP) doesn’t match up with the phone number given afterwards…

    i went to the one in la, it was pretty amazing… but i also had trouble breathing. it might have something to do with the large amount of feathers i inhaled while laughing…

  5. Anonymous says:

    Aww…I always miss out on the cool stuff.

  6. Snively says:

    Aw, thanks Sam . . . I think?

  7. Kevin '12 says:

    Wow, lots of Harvard bashing here. Nice, haha.

    I’m so jealous you people near Boston get to do these things.

  8. tina says:

    I was at the NYC pillow fight yesterday in Union Square … somehow doing it on a huge lawn seems like a better idea than our cement-encased park patio.

  9. Mgccl says:

    Haha… why is there so much MIT people in Boston?

  10. Tim-baugh says:

    plus, the sign is implying that the people they are looking for in the study are physically small while they are sleeping (yeah modifiers)

  11. Davorama says:

    the mistake was putting the harvard symbol on that ad.

  12. Sam says:

    snivs, you’re my willem dafoe, always and forever.

  13. Krypton says:

    In addition to the phone number, less/fewer, the grammatically/sexually questionable second bullet, and the awkwardly inserted third bullet, there’s an inappropriate usage of the colon before the amount paid and capitalization of the non-proper noun terms “toll free”!

    The horror!

  14. Chris says:

    wow, this is amazing, I love the pillow fights, I went to the one in Houston, I never would’ve dreamed anyone else would know about these wild and crazy random events, but I should’ve known MIT would!

  15. Also, I don’t like how the third bullet point isn’t a question like the first two. It’s jarring.

    And I think dialing 1-888-LIKE-SLEEP will connect you to the same phone as 1-888-545-3753. The dialing computer (or whatever you’d call it) would simply drop the “EP”–or probably more accurately, stop taking input after it gets the eleventh digit.

    I actually had a phone drop digits in a similar manner this week. Took me a while to figure out why I kept getting the wrong number.

  16. Alli says:

    Wow kid! Nice post!
    Although it was a little unnerving to see my face when I clicked through. :O

    AND, I’m sorry I ruined your “pretend to be prefrosh” plan! Clearly you’re just too famous.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Snively, how many times do you go home during the year? Do a lot of people stay at MIT during breaks?

  18. Francis '12 says:

    Another mistake! in the “Receive up to: $5,090”

    You put a colon after an independent clause so that “[Subject] [Verb] [Preposition]: [object]” is wrong.

    Other than the concern about being something other than male or female, that bullet should probably say either “Are you A male or female…” or “Are you male or female AND between…”

  19. Francis '12 says:

    ^to clarify, I mean the colon shouldn’t be there.

  20. Marissa says:

    Aw man, I live in MA. I totally should have come. I even saw the topic on the FB group, but I guess I forgot about it.

    I’ll see everyone at CPW though :D

  21. You guys are reading too much into this… or maybe I’m just dumb. I thought that the error (or whatever) was in the second bulleted prerequisite — although some may argue that that IS a legitimate requirement.

  22. You guys are reading too much into this… or maybe I’m just dumb. I thought that the error (or whatever) was in the second bulleted prerequisite — although some may argue that that IS a legitimate requirement.

  23. Eek, sorry that went through twice! And now I’m gonna triple post, since I realized on second thought that they may be looking for a male of any age OR a female between the specified ages. Still sounds funny upon first read, though.

  24. Bassil `12 says:

    We — and when I say we, I mean I — concluded that it’s Like Sle, which is very funny to say on the red line, surrounded by Harvardians.

    Indeed, we got free energy drinks, one good, one bad, and, engaged in arm-to-arm pillow fighting to preserve the freedom of MIT Prefrosh everywhere.

  25. Ah…good point, Melanie. Especially when you consider that “Are you between the ages of 18-35?” would’ve sufficed.

  26. Robert '12 says:

    I WISH I WAS THERE! That looked amazing, hands down.

    The first thing that came to mind was that the ad was asking me if i was short and a sleeper. My attention span couldnt hold onto the phone number long enough.

  27. Viva says:

    i noticed the “male or female” too. but then i thought “maybe they just don’t want transgendered folks”

  28. Rutu says:

    OMG that looks amazing!!!!!! WOOT FOR PILLOW OVERPOPULATION!!!!!!! Man, is this taking place again next year?

  29. Bassil `12 says:

    It’s Harvard — what did you expect?

  30. Steph says:

    Public pillow fight…how peculiar and fun. I hate to think how hard one must be hit to go to the ambulance. :

  31. Ruaridh'12 says:

    i heard about our london version of the pillow fight too, international co-operation or what?!
    the silent disco flash mob will always be my favourite:


  32. José C. '12 says:

    “Less than is used before a plural noun that denotes a measure of time, amount, or distance: less than three weeks; less than $400; less than 50 miles.” (The American Heritage Dictionary)

    The use of the phrase is correct, I’m afraid. =/

  33. Anonymous says:

    Please tell us what is wrong with the sign! It’s killing me!

  34. Pillow fights are AMAZING, so pillow fights that large are DOUBLE-PLUS AMAZING!
    I live in Western MD, 3.5 hours equidistant from Pixburgh and Baltimoe. BOTH admitted student meetings are 7pm on school nights. *death groan*
    But CPW is a go for sure!

  35. Anonymous says:

    Is it because it should be “light” sleeper, or is it because it’s supposed to be at a women’s hospital (and they ask for men AND women)?

  36. Caroline '11 says:

    awwww man, i wish i could’ve been there! but noooo, i spent the week in the hospital getting an emergency tonsillectomy. grrrr.

  37. Omar '12 says:

    Nice Alli! You got your picture up on here again haha. I won’t be going to any party either since the closest one is 2 hours :-(.

  38. Alison says:

    + you don’t use ‘less’ for countable things. It should say fewer than 7 hours.

  39. Alison says:

    One does not use less when refering to countable things. The sign should read fewer than 7 hours.

    ha ha heeeeeeee grammer.

  40. Keshav P '12 says:

    @ Alison.

    Wow. And I thought I was going to a Tech school.

  41. Snively says:

    So now that we’ve thoroughly thrashed the sign, allow me to tell you what we thought was wrong.

    The only thing we noticed was the length discrepancy in the phone number.

  42. again, one of my totally random posts, random enough to put Snively to shame. Anyway:

    1)This could only happen at one of the world’s finest centers of higher education XD

    2)Somehow I still can’t help but run into MIT every single stupid day, in the most unlikely ways. For example: google “conductor jokes”

    3)I have just figured out the best way to convey one of my goals in life. Someday, I want to have a good reason to run across the MIT campus in the middle of a New England winter, shouting “eureka” and completely naked.

  43. @myself
    Today, I was searching for a specific monologue from Romeo and Juliet, and the first site that came up in my search is hosted by MIT. You didn’t want me, now will you please go away?

    Oh, I don’t know, maybe it’s me hanging on to the dream. Sorry if this doesn’t really belong here or if I sound a little mean.


  44. Alison says:

    “Less- Should not be misused for fewer.
    He had less men than in the previous campaign.
    He had fewer men than in the previous campaign.
    Less refers to quantity, fewer to number. “His troubles are less than mine” means “His troubles are not so great as mine.” “His troubles are fewer than mine” means “His troubles are not so numerous as mine.” It is, however, correct to say, “The signers of the petition were less than a hundred, “where the round number, a hundred, is something like a collective noun, and less is thought of as meaning a less quantity or amount.”
    This is from my ridiculously old copy of The Elements of Style, maybe the rules of grammer have evolved?
    I was thinking ‘the hours you sleep are not so numerous as 7’
    If it were a round number like 10 (7 is kind of specific), I think less would be okay
    Although, ‘7 hours’ could be a sort of ‘collective noun’ because it’s generally accepted as the short end of the-healthy-lengths-of-time-to-sleep-spectrum.


  46. Anonymous says:

    Also parallelism – the first two bullets say “are you/ Do you” while the last goes straight to the point without identifying the subject.


  47. Didn’t Michelle do a cameo in the blog about BLUE Blanket Jon (which was the same blog in which Laura’s BLUE sandbox table also snuck in a cameo)?

    What is this all leading up to? What did I miss? (Any more clues?)

  48. Anonymous says:

    another parallelism:
    the third bullet contains an adjective clause and a noun phrase

    What’s wrong with us?

    Grammar Nazi!

  49. Snively says:

    She was also in the hot dog entry.

    Hm . . . what could it mean?

  50. Sorry, I originally missed the hot dog blog (it’s a little dark in here and I don’t get many opportunities to read). I’ll pay better attention next time we surface.

  51. Truman says:

    “Are you… MICHAEL SNIVELY?”
    *”Final Countdown” plays*

    You blogstar, you.