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MIT student blogger Laura N. '09

Ducks vs. Army Men! by Laura N. '09

Remember the good old days when you used to play in the sandbox?

At the beginning of the year, Rick ’09 and I had a marathon carpentry session. We built a loft for James ’11, and a table for each of us. Okay, so the barstools never got made. In fact, the lumber is still stacked in the side hallway of the 23 suite. I’m looking at it right now. Maybe we should get on that.

Anyway, the point of this entry is the tables. I just wanted a small table to put in my room, but Rick decided to go all out, and convinced me to add a compartment to my table, so that you could open the top and store stuff underneath.

Well, Rick’s table turned out exactly as he wanted it, but mine turned out huge. By that I mean, we built it to the dimensions that I wanted, but it turned out to be far larger than I really expected it to be, especially when I put it in my room. I tried it out for a few days and decided that I hated it. So I donated it to the floor lounge, where it was quickly claimed by Yuki ’11.

My room is beach themed- the walls are blue and yellow (ocean and sand), and the table was painted the same colors. Yuki wanted to know why I was getting rid of the table. He claimed that I should seal the compartment and fill it with sand- or better yet, make it into an aquarium to really complete the theme of the room.

I sort of suspected that this might make a mess. My response was, “If you want to do that in your room, you go right ahead.”

Okay, so that’s awesome.

But, believe it or not, as Wes ’10, James ’11, and Dan ’11 discovered, making sandfalls, observing different patterns of sand dunes and burying your hands in the sand gets boring after like 20 minutes. We decided we needed more toys.

So we called on Snively, of course.

Snively’s reinforcements arrive. Yuki’s immediate reaction: “Okay, you guys know this totally means Ducks vs. Army Men, right?”

Preparing the troops for battle.

The army men hunker down in a trench (…created by a glowstick).

The battle rages on.

The ducks receive surprise reinforcement from a ferocious piranha.

The funeral for the fallen soliders of battle, complete with a “Chaplain” duck (handed out to new students by the chaplain’s office in September) and 21 gun salute.

We put the toys away. No one would ever know what lies inside the table. (Except maybe thanks to that leak…)

27 responses to “Ducks vs. Army Men!”

  1. Manders says:

    Sorry about that. I’ve just never been so close to first lol. Ducks are fun.

  2. Akshay says:

    It’s a very funny blog. I like the pics a lot. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Snively says:

    That was EPIC! It’s too bad the glowstick isn’t really glowing in the pictures, it definitely added something to the battle.

  4. EV says:

    Happy birthday Laura!

  5. Isshak says:

    Ah, IAP, such a fun month apparently.

  6. Harrison says:

    You’re all seriously ridiculous

  7. qiqi says:

    woo… it really funny ! i like it …
    thanks for sharing

  8. BB says:

    i i <3 mit

  9. BB says:

    er– that was supposed to say i *heart* mit


    but somehow some disappeared. whoops.

  10. Anonymous says:

    that so sounds like something my friends and I would do

  11. wowz. redunculousness.
    wowz. redunculousness.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I wonder if bugs will find that and lay eggs….Otherwise, quite cool.

  13. anon says:

    Most awesome table ever!

    Who won the battle?

  14. Anyone else reminded of Mr. Rogers? I seem to remember him having a similar sand table.

    Although, I don’t recall his table being used quite so awesomely.

  15. Marissa says:

    Too awesome for words.

  16. phreaker says:

    Sounds like something I’d join in. But I’d make a much bigger mess, lol

  17. archimedes says:

    This reminds me of when we had chicken nuggets in the shape of dinosaurs in elementary school. Yes, we would have Chicken Nugget Dino Wars. Was that just me?

  18. Hank R. says:


    Totally did it too.

  19. Paul says:

    Lavya – MyMIT doesn’t and can’t track additional materials, sorry! If you are really worried, you can call or email Admissions directly, but they probably have it.

  20. Piper says:

    Haha, that was amazing! I love sand. Really, I do – playing in it, running on it, making sand castles. Ahh, California.

  21. lavya says:

    how do i confirm if the extra materials send in were received? the app tracking doesn’t list any extra stuff.
    btw amusing post! belligerent ducks, anseriform parsons, what will you come up with next?!!

  22. Ah, but does the infamous blue sandbox table make a sneak, cameo appearance in Snively’s blog about BlueBlanketJon? (In Exhibit B with BlueBlanketJon and Goldilocks?)

  23. Snively says:


    Wow — Yes, the blue table did indeed cameo in my second picture. It lived in our floor lounge for quite some time, working its way into many pictures. Sneaky thing!

  24. Eulogy to Army Men
    by Donald Guy

    Gather forth and do here told
    The story of these men most bold:
    Though feet conjoined and plastic green
    They fought most bravely here between
    Wood and sand, blue and tan, floor be-low and sky.
    To win, and to lose, to run in or fly
    They lived, or seemed to, prepared to die.

    It all began, peacefully, a quiet afternoon.
    It began so far away from the battle dune,

    But the men so lively,
    The men of Snively,
    Could hardly find their rest,
    for e’er here, they had to fear
    Their camps would be beset
    By a foe so foul, a fiend so fine,
    I daren’t speak the name,
    but to say, that from this day
    I’ll never see Daffy the same.

    The battle raged, the day was lost
    Things unspeakable transpired
    A flying piranha was the worst
    That with the enemy conspired.

    Still no matter dwelling here,
    We care what we lost, not how
    The battle can be studied more
    But not these men, not now
    Because they’re gone,
    they’ll NEVER RETURN
    We’ve lost them to the sand
    All because students of fate
    Turned onto us their greedy hands!

    You thought their lives a game
    but did you not stop to consider
    their little plastic pain?!

    These men were great,
    They were MADE for the army
    but now they are no more.
    But let us not cry, for in their deaths,
    they managed to end the war.


    Good times. Consistent form? who needs it?

    ~Donald Guy

  25. E. Rosser says:

    Donald Guy– You’re awesome! That was like “Flanders Feilds” intense! A custom-made epic about battle that makes “Ducks vs. Army Men” an… epic battle. Indeed.
    Keep up the randomness! And nice carpentry job, btw.