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MIT student blogger Jess K. '10

Silent Dance Party by Jess K. '10

If we had the chance, we'd ask the world to dance.

It’s been a while! I fully apologize for not writing since getting to MIT – it’s been a crazy few weeks, but I’m finally settled in and ready to blog. I moved to Burton-Conner this year, which, much like East Campus, has very different floor cultures, so I’m very happy to say that I’m now a resident of Burton 1, and unfortunately for Snively will probably never move out. Burton 1 is known for its ’09 floor chair Kip, whose voice is deeper than the Atlantic Ocean and is only a few decibels louder than a sledgehammer, its collective love of the song “The Way I Are” by Timbaland, and Dima and Rich’s classy tea parties (an invite was once extended to Susan Hockfield, but she never RSVPed).

Since our return for the fall semester, however, the parties on our floor have been increasing in number, size, and volume, to the point that people in China can almost no longer hear Kip’s inside voice. Saturday night’s event went much later and louder than was acceptable, and so, after our floor chairs met with our housemaster Roe, the floor convened to discuss how we would deal with similar situations in the future. Eventually we began discussing possible solutions, i.e. events in lieu of blasting dance parties – one of which was the “silent dance party”.

Later that evening Jamie of the 133 suite sent out an email:

“When blasting loud music fails….

We are thinking of investing in some silence :-)


Buy a radio transmitter (range ~ 30 ft) and put it on our ceiling.

Buy very cheap wireless headphone fm radio sets. (about 20)

And of course…

The initial cost would about around $100. After that most likely about $10 a party for enough batteries for 20 people.

Everyone gets their own headphone set so we all listen to the same stream of glorious music. We can dance, and no one outside our suite can hear a thing.

Besides, isn’t $100 worth the look on Roe’s face when he walks in to a room full of 20 people dancing in complete silence?

We want input.


Best idea ever? I THINK SO. Never let it be said that MIT students aren’t adept problem solvers, especially in the face of having their party privileges taken away.

To be serious for a moment, we would like to apologize to any Burton-Conner residents trying to sleep on Saturday night. It was an impromptu event that was not handled well, and similar parties will be dealt with much better in the future.

On a more positive note, I have a single for the first time in MIT history! Most MIT students move from doubles to singles after freshman year, and while it’s a little odd not being able to say “NEHA. WATCH THIS VIDEO OF A WOMAN WITH NO HANDS,” every five minutes (I really loved living in a double), it does have its perks (I can drink juice from the carton, and nobody is allowed to care). Unfortunately, my camera was recently broken, so I apologize for the lack of color.

If we do, however, end up executing the silent dance party, there’ll be many pictures to come! (They might be drawn in Paint, though.)

31 responses to “Silent Dance Party”

  1. A Parent says:

    Last Saturday around 3PM, we were visiting our daughter (’11) in Burton 1. On our way out I thought we passed by your room, because (I think) you were sitting there reading, with your door wide open. Great post!

  2. Wow, the silent party is a very resourceful idea. This could have major positive implications at MIT, as well as the rest of the world :D

  3. EV says:

    Hi, I have a quite simple question regarding freshman admission;

    I’d love to study at MiT, but I simply don’t have enough time to complete SATs, a TOEFL, in addition to my demanding high school subjects and quite a load of extracir’s.
    Therefore, I’ve thought that the easiest thing for me would be to enroll in a college in my country, study for one year (not a bachelor course, just two semesters with math and stat) and then apply as a freshman for the class of 2013. Is this possible, or do I have to apply as a transfer student?


  4. Farhad says:

    Yay! Four blog entries today!

  5. Paul '11 says:

    Silent dance parties are the way of the future.

  6. Leslie says:

    silent parties rock!!

  7. Jess says:

    Inquirer of Rooms: Living in a single isn’t really isolating oneself, it’s just having a place to go back to where you don’t have to worry about bothering someone else, or interrupting their sleep schedule. It’s quite nice actually, especially since I live in a suite, and so essentially share one giant room with four other (awesome) people, but have my own little space on the side. Best of both worlds, I think.

    EV: You’d have to apply as a transfer student, if you’ve enrolled in another college already.

  8. mmm… that party was super fun. sorry for the disturbance.
    silence would work okay… until the 21st dancer comes along.

  9. Singles… I thought the whole point of college was to meet new people and not isolate oneself?! I guess you could always meet new people elsewhere, but still…

    Does your single cost a lot more than a double would?

  10. Hawkins says:

    Hahaha, that is amazing!

    BTW, I have a Canon Powershot, so if you let me see your futon I’ll let you take pictures with it. =O

  11. Isshak says:

    Well, by the powers that I may execute how I like, I solemnly give the Nobel Prize to…Jess Kim! For her work as a Silent Party spreader !
    On a more serious tone (^^) silent party rock !!! I tired it once, and let me tell you, you’re going to have MANY MANY weird faces looking at you the following morning.

  12. milena '11 says:

    I’m with Fred– Phyo IS freakin awesome- but I don’t see how that relates to this entry. But yea, good point. We want pictures of Phyo sitting on your awesome futon.

    Oh, and wasn’t there a commercial like that silent party thing? Like a freakload of people were at the beach at midnight or something and they all blasted the same music at the same time and had a kinda trance-ish party? I tried looking for it on youtube but couldn’t find it :(

  13. Aakriti says:

    A great blog as always… smile

  14. Isshak says:

    Jess, I had a question, could you explain to us what rush dorm really is ? Because I didn’t really understand how they place you. Do you answer questions like “I would like to have my own bedroom, near school, great view) things like that ? By the way any MIT student can answer if he/she knows it well.

  15. Sam says:

    wait, you’re on B1 now? you should totally become the new Anne. I mean, tall and abusive.

  16. Grace '11 says:

    wao good idea, but what about all the people who sing along to the music as they dance?? do they just mouth the words silently?

  17. Hunter '11 says:

    Inquirer of Rooms – Essentially, what Jess said. I don’t spend a whole lot of time in my room. I’m either at classes, in the lounge, taking jitsu, etc – but I like being able to go to bed as early or late as I please without worrying about someone else. If I’m correct, upperclassmen and a fair amount of freshman have singles – and we all socialize =)

  18. anonymous says:

    Jess, I read your article in the Tech. I agree with you 100%.

  19. Hunter '11 says:

    YAY SINGLES! I actually was able to get a single this year, but this isn’t especially rare because East Campus has a lot of singles.

    Silent dance party?

    Glad you’re back to blogging =)

  20. rafa says:

    @ farhad!
    yup..4 entries today…and snively made it to all of em!!or did he?..lemme read again!!

  21. ROFL. Three cheers for the idea of having a silent dance party. That’s a perfect example of good, old-fashioned MIT ingenuity. Good luck if ya’ll ever have it, I hope there’ll be a lot of pictures despite your camera’s recent misfortune. I hope that it can be repaired soon. Also, congratulations on the upgrade to a single.

  22. Erick '11 says:

    I thought it was the bombers on saturday night. I know on friday night I was trying to go to sleep because I needed to row early (read: 8 am).

  23. Nihar says:

    Excellent!!Plus..each of you have your own volume control!!(It really bugs me when my pals say the musicz too loud for them to dance). Its like telling someone that ur too brainy to go to MIT.Impossible!

  24. javi says:

    i’m so close to getting in to BC…i want it wink

  25. Sophomore year I lived in Baker 320. This is basically the middlemost room of Baker. I hosted a CSC party that got so loud that, the next day, I had people complaining about it who lived in the very corners of the 6th and 1st floors.

  26. FOMG, I am posting againz!

    @ the person who asked about dorm rush: Dorm rush as a campus is just choosing which dorm you want to live in. Meaning that you visit dorms you might want to live in…then fill out a lottery sheet listing the dorms in order of preference. It has nothing to do with what room you get.

    After you get into a dorm, then each dorm has their own process of placing you into a room. But for the most part, you’re only going to get into open rooms that haven’t been claimed by upperclassmen (who mostly did rooming the previous spring).

    Also, I had a single for 3 years (yes, Baker 320 is a riverside double…and I had it as a single…so suck on that). And it’s awesome. If you really want a single as a frosh, your best bet is getting into MacGregor. But it’s a lot more fun to have roommates and make friends. Then you can have your single.

    Someone should film the party if it ever happens.

  28. silverSurfer says:

    Hmmm… or should i say hummmmm is what i”m looking for to dance with a reckless abandon until night breaks way to light and memories are made good or bad. i refer to a 60 cycle hum that is associated with bass frequency hum… with cheap wireless headsets will you get the bass you need to incite the savage beast that attacks the wakeboard, salesfloor, and mit p-sets with equal fervor?

  29. Rachel '12 says:

    Wow, my robotics team came up with the exact same idea like a month ago! (The teachers next door always complain about the loud music we blast while building.) Except it would be more like a silent machining party. And dancing might be lethal.