Making Things Up

by Mary Liza Hartong and Andrew Kingsley | 5/10/16 5:03pm

Young Wes isn’t too fond of his classes. For example, he despises his 6D, which runs from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Friday nights with x-hours scheduled exclusively over Green Key weekend. That’s right ­— 72 straight x-hours. “Moving Dartmouth Forward,” people. While he hasn’t yet honed his skills in “Primate Endocrinology,” he has developed quite the arsenal of excuses to get out of class. And it’s not your typical, “Oh, I overslept,” or “My throat hurts,” or the classic, “My family was slaughtered in a tragic boating accident in the Bermuda Triangle.” No, Wes has his professors wrapped around his little finger with some of the most creative whoppers out there. Let’s take a look at some highlights.

Dec. 15, 2014, 4:24 a.m.

Hey there Professor Harrington,

I hope you are currently sleeping well. That would make one of us. You see, I’ve spent the last three nights in search of my cat, Smittens. Clever, I know. What else would you expect from your star pupil? Anyway, Smittens was abducted a few evenings ago by what was either a puffed-up SNS officer or three horny raccoons in a single trench coat. What’s the difference, right? Just more of my top notch humor, professor. Teehee!

Needless to say, I will not be able to make it to class tomorrow morning, as Mondays are Smittens’s mani-pedi mornings, and I just know he’ll find his way back to my boudoir before Gretchen arrives to perfect his cuticles. Meow for now.

March 3, 2015, 11:16 p.m.

G’day Professor Gombins,

So sorry I haven’t been in class lately. My oxygen tank needed refilling and I can only get refills from my primary care physician in Oklahoma. “Oxygen tank?” you may be asking as you scribble F’s onto the grimy papers of privileged New England-born freshmen.

Allow me to explain. You see, I’ve been anxiously awaiting the results from my lung biopsy. As a cancer survivor and avid smoker yourself, I’m sure you understand just how taxing the waiting process can be. Send your prayers and an extension on my essay, and maybe a carton of Camels. Sweet, silky Camels. I’ll be smoking to take the edge off until I hear back from you and my doctor, which I’m sure you understand. Goodbye cruel world, or at least cruel 10A.

Oct. 30, 2015, 10:41 p.m.

Hallow Dr. Prolix,

The moon is full tonight, yet my stomach is empty. Like many of my classmates in your “Intoduction to Russian Lit” course, I had to make the tough choice between a love of KAF and a reverence for Kafka. Tonight I chose Kafka. For my project on his famed “Metamorphosis” I will transform into a werewolf, just like I did for my final on animal psychology. I was such a beast, forgive me.

Soon, the children of Hanover will fill the streets and my belly with their candied flesh. I will gorge on their succulent, Twizzler-like sinews. The sinews at the Hop are so overpriced. $3.50 a bag? Are you kidding me?! This is all, of course, a metaphor, just like Kafka’s. All this to say, I’ll be terribly occupied tomorrow. Perhaps keep your scrumptious sons indoors.

Feb. 14, 2016, 6:06 p.m.

Evening Professor Madison,

To be quite honest, I’m not feeling too hot. My Valentine’s Day orgy — you know, the one co-sponsored by Collis After Dark and the history department? — just isn’t cutting it. I thought the whip dungeon and electric clamps would raise my spirits, but alas. The other 72 students and satyrs seemed into it.

Idon’t know what’s wrong. Was it all the queso dip? Or maybe the loose alligators? Then again the sword swallowing and chocolate icing always get me, not to mention the baby cribs. Maybe I’ve become immune to all the flogging and burning effigies. To sum up my pain, I just don’t know if I’ll make it to class tomorrow. Your lecture on dot matrices might prove too stirring for me.

This has nothing to do with my shattered pelvis or missing lips. I just need a day to myself and maybe a few satyrs.

May 11, 2016, 9:59 a.m.

Professor Garcia, girl, you don’t even know. Girl. Like, for real. Listen up. So, Jessica burst into my room this morning and filled me in on the whole Kesha situation — omg, horrible, right?! — and I had no choice but to spend my first waking hours watching YouTube videos campaigning for justice on behalf of the wordsmith of our generation. To state that I “can’t even” would be such an understatement that I’m not even going to say it. Okay, let me say it: I can’t even. And I mean it.

You heard right. I can’t make it to your class. Not today and not until Kesha is free. As a woman, I expect you’ll understand completely. TTYL.