Will students lose their minds over cable TV?

by Sam Means | 10/25/00 5:00am

The new, expanded cable system that Dartmouth now offers has brought both good and bad to campus. The average GPA for campus has dropped from 2.8 during the spring term of this year, to just under 1.5 for this term. Like Hardware's glowing space-ropes, the new cable channels have ensnared Dartmouth College. Having been drawn in by Melodia's siren song, the average student finds himself in the center of one of Windhammer's brutal red dust storms. But some good has come with this decrease in scores; Students are achieving record levels of proficiency on the College Board's oldest and most respected test: The "Silverhawk" Aptitude Test.

Judging by test results, the average Dartmouth student is now twice as likely to identify Tally Hawk on sight, compared to just two weeks ago, and more than four times as likely to answer "yes" to the question, "Is MonStar an enemy of the Silverhawks?" The correct spelling of MonStar's name was not a point of much improvement, but school officials reminded critics that the cable system has only been in effect for a short time. "It is likely," according to President James Wright, "that many students have yet to even see the classic origin story." A serpentine alien known only as Yes-Man then appeared and added, "Yes, master Wright," before hastily slinking away.

Yale University's average GPA may be more than twice as high as Dartmouth's now, but Dartmouth has jumped way ahead in the U.S. News and World Report college rankings. On the strength of the latest round of SAT testing, Dartmouth has moved into second place, behind only Rankin-Bass University of Southern California. On hearing the news, Dean Jim Larimore leapt out of his office window, spread his metallic wings beneath his arms, and disappeared in a brilliant stream of pure light. Sources report that he cried: "First U.S. News, now Brim*Star!" before departing.

The student body is also pleased by the news. Daniel King '01 expressed not only his joy when he received his SAT scores, but also his commitment to continued excellence. "Channel 54 is my new mother. I will suckle at its glowing teat." He then proceeded to sit on his red foldout futon and watch a lot of television.

"I am very pleased that I not only know that Lt. Quicksilver is the leader of the Silverhawks, but also that his real name is Jonathan Quick," according to Jonathan Schlesinger '03. "But don't be fooled -- Commander Stargazer is the one who's actually in charge of the Mirage."

Dartmouth has yet to show much improvement in the controversial "Silver Spoons" Achievement Test, but sources say the College is confident in its ability to overtake Harvard University. Many have complained that the SSAT is racist and that lower-class viewers are at a disadvantage. Officials at Harvard, however, are adamant that "people of all races and classes should be able to identify the classic episode in which Mr. T guest-starred as Ricky Shroeder's bodyguard." President Wright agreed, and countered that "we'll prove it when we kick your collective ass, pretty-boys."

The College is confident that the school's SAT and SSAT will continue to rise, and hope that the school's HHE (Hal Hartley Examination) scores will go through the roof when Dartmouth Cable adds the Independent Film Channel to its roster later this year. "The cable system as it stands is a great way for students to learn about 'Thundercats'," says Larimore, "but what about 'Trust,' or 'Henry Fool'?" Dartmouth also plans to add ABC and the George Wendt Channel.

In other news, the College lost its accreditation yesterday.

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