The notoriously irreverent Stanford band will be suspended through next spring after administrators found “a systemic cultural problem” in the student group that has “not been taken seriously by the band or its leadership.”
The punishment requires the band to stop all activities, both on and off campus. Students who flout the order could be disciplined individually.
“Nothing more will be accomplished without extreme consequences,” a Stanford Organization Conduct Board panel concluded, finding that the band has failed to reform even after a probation period of more than a year.
“We do not feel that the current leadership or membership is capable of creating the necessary cultural change,” the panel said. “We feel there is a total lack of accountability and responsibility in the current organization.”
Yep. Back when I was in college, and not at Stanford, by the way, I made money driving buses. One trip involved my college's marching band, the equivalent of Stanford's band here.
Oddly, our destination was indeed Stanford!
So picture the scene. I'm driving a bus of howling band members down I80 toward the Bay Bridge. Traffic brings the bus to a stop. Suddenly, I'm rushed by the band members, who wanted me to let them out onto the highway ( here four or five lanes each way), where they planned to retrieve their instruments from under the bus and them march up and down the traffic lanes playing school fight songs. It was with a supreme effort that I kept the idiots inside.
Further on, I heard a commotion in the back. This bus had two steps up from where I was driving to the seating area. I glanced back to see what was going on, only to observe someone coming down the aisle. He walked right up to me, looked me in the eye, and deposited a rolled up item of denim clothing on the dashboard. Without a word, he turned and walked back.
A second later, I saw two bare female legs walking down the aisle. It was the owner of the pants, who had had them removed in the back by her band mates. Without a word, she walked up, nabbed the pants, looked me in the eye, and turned and calmly walked back to her seat. Apparently no biggie.
Later, on the trip home, the band began taking bets as to the exact time we would get back to campus. Naturally, the closer we got, the more apparent to half the bus that they had guessed too long, and the other half realized their money was too short. The last 20 minutes or so was chaos, as the entire bus stood and crowded the front, half screaming to "Slow Down!" half screaming to "Speed Up!" and one lone voice of someone telling me to keep driving just like I was.
One of the losers, on getting off the bus, told me as he passed that my mother masturbated with a chain saw.
I never drove the band again, but I'll never forget the time I did. I was amazed then that they weren't in constant trouble with administration, and I'm surprised that it took the pearl clutching church ladies over at Stanford this long to try and cool the jets of their marching band, which sounds like it was upholding the hoary college tradition of complete insanity set to music. Some things, I guess, just can't last in our current political climate, and that's just too bad.