The recent Williams Trivia contest featured a request to “”Give us a perspective on cluster housing in the style of Dr. Seuss.” Great question. Where is the archive of answers? Seth Brown ’01 (author of the definitive anchor housing limerick) was kind enough to send us his. If you love anchor housing the way that we love anchor housing, you should read the whole thing.

Once, in the land of the Truffular Trees
Where the leafpeepers came to watch leaves in the breeze
And the students would never get F’s, D’s, or C’s
Lived a hermit named Mortoise, the Tortoise, you see.

Now, old Mortoise was friends with young Yertle the Turtle
And thought that the students had needed a hurdle
To stop them from living wherever they please
In the land of the triffular Truffular trees.

“There are students,” said Mortoise, “who live with their friends
And the sports teams together, and WARPies, and Splends,
And they’re all far too happy, tonight it all ends.”

So then Mortoise, he hatched a craptacular plan
Which would on the free agency put a great ban
So the students could not live with their friends at all
When they came back to college the following fall.

“We’ll have anchors,” he said, “These big metal contraptions,
Which weigh people down, and by doing this action
The students can’t live with whomever they think,
And if they float an alternate plan, it will sink.”


Now the students, poor students, were quite now distressed,
Since mean Mortoise the Tortoise had never addressed
All the problems that people had raised with this scheme.
“It’s obnoxious” “It’s stupid.” “It’s mean, mean, mean, mean!”

All the students complained, “What’s the point of your plan?
Do you want to make sure the way things were ran
Where all students were happy and lived where they chose
Will now be gone forever, like some Sphynx’s nose?”

“I just want to make house pride,” Old Mortoise responded,
“Because I think students should all feel more bonded.
They need to have pride in the dorm where we stick ’em,
And if someone doesn’t, by golly, we’ll kick ’em.”

“But don’t you think people would have more house pride
If they lived in a place where they got to decide
Who they lived with? So people could live with their buddies,
And partiers party while studiers study?”

“No way,” said old Mortoise the Tortoise, “No way.
I invented this plan, and this plan’s here to stay.
And don’t bother to argue or point out the flaws
Because I’m the Decider, and I make the laws.”

And then Duddles McFuddles said, “Mortoise is right,
We need strong from-the-top housing planning alright,
That’s what we had in my day, so it must be right,
And we know that it’s good, since we’re both very bright.”

Though the students said, “Hey, we don’t need this crap plan,”
They had all graduated, like fridge-leaving-flan,
And the new class arrived, with no history sense
So the clusterfuck happened, with no recompense.

Now the students all live in their Truffular Trees
And live quietly, doing as Moirtoise would please
Because no one would challenge him, no one at all.
But a Lorax, perhaps, just perhaps come next fall
Will speak up and get Clusterfuck housing to fall
Which would really be good for the students, in all.

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