It’s been recently noted by St. Olaf students that our proud mascot in the clouds is no longer her virginal white self. Rather, Big Ole has been stained by none other than Oles who break intervisitation hours. Yes, you who have co-ed movie nights lasting well into the wee morning hours, you who fall asleep on your friends’ futons, you are the scoundrel responsible for Big Ole’s brown shame. Like a scarlet letter, her stripe of tan sings to the sky of St. Olaf students’ misgivings.
In my investigation of this matter, I came across William Windy, who first noted the shame of Big Ole while performing his usual Sunday afternoon walk. When asked about the recent appearance of the mark, Windy stated, “In my 30 odd years of working for the college I’ve only seen the mark of the beast one other time.” Windy looked into the sky across the natural lands with memories flooding his eyes and wrinkled his nose before continuing with his sentiments.
“Fall of 2014, the brown streak first appeared in the stairwell of Mohn Hall. Normally you wouldn’t notice a thing like that, but trust me, the smell made it hard to forget.” Windy asks that students who wish to remain with the opposite sex past intervisitation hours find a communal space to do so in. “There’s public lounges in each dorm for that sort of thing, or maybe even just get up early and go to a saintly breakfast before church with each other instead.”
St. Olaf students seem less flustered by the public outing of their crusades than Windy. I interviewed Sven Anderson ’18 to get the student scoop on the Big Brown. Anderson stated, “Carleton has no intervisitation hour rules, and look at them! Two pristine white windmills. If you ask me, it’s no fault of our own, it’s a flaw in the system.” Anderson’s comments seem to resonate with the rest of the students I interviewed who claim the rule is outdated and brings confusion for non-binary students.
The administration has suggested creating a knitting circle to address the issue from both ends: “The circle would encourage students to spend their time together in a public space, thereby solving the issue of intervisitation. Together we plan to knit a sweater for Big Ole to make her presentable again for commencement and reunion weekend when parents and alumni donors will be on campus.” The circle will meet Fridays at 10 p.m. in Steensland Hall.