Gorillas In Our Midst

It was with great anticipation that I began my latest in-field study of the tribe of the KEG House. The last segment of my thesis on white decadent sub-cultures was to be brief, a mere day, but it enjoyed optimal timing. It was just after fall rush, and the air was ripe with the excitement of the new brood members, or “pledges,” who had just sworn allegiance to the tribe. Anticipation singed my skin as thoughts of being the first anthropologist to chronicle the fabled “elephant walk” ritual.

Saturday afternoon: KEG House.

I enter the house and with promises of free beverages from the Bear’s Lair, I quickly befriend one of the few brothers not away at the football game. He showed me the tribe’s sacred charter and past celebrations recorded on photographic prints, called “wallies.” These “wallies,” which generally depict brood members with big-haired females, document mating rituals for future generations to learn from and use as reference for masturbation. My newfound friend seemed very excited about the evening’s party and its potential: “Moisties galore bro!” I would soon find out…

Saturday evening: the Party.

The festivities begin as females from a nearby sister brood arrive. Ceremonial garb for both sexes consists primarily of baseball caps and faux-plaid shirts. Soon the groups mix as they congregate en masse, plastic communion cups in hand, toward the “keg,” which is being tapped by a brood shaman. Engendered with a consecrated status, it is the keg which is central to the celebration and much of the culture itself. After a libation of rich foam, all quickly partake in the celebration of the keg. A brother’s not participating would break strong tribal taboos, but the threat of ostracization prevents any such development. The keg juice, in addition to its normal variety, may be light, dry, dark, or ice. All are cheap and domestic and each seems to produce the desired effect, intoxication, at more or less the same efficacy. It is considered good form to consume so much keg juice that a brood brother or sister becomes so intoxicated as to vomit.

Like us, the fraternal tribes seem to appreciate the concepts of “sucking” and “Stanfurd,” but they have a distict notion of spiritual bliss or retreat. It is known among their people as “Tahoe” and is spoken of with reverent awe. Perhaps it is the source of keg juice. I gather that Tahoe is a place where brothers engage in activities not unlike those here at the celebration, but with snow. Among their people, it is a considerable feat for a brother to have his father’s Pathfinder or Jeep to go to Tahoe.

Males vie for female attention in contests of pool and beer pong. Other males cavort and review the day’s football game; discussion revolves around a general feeling that the game’s officials were “tools.” The term denotes a lack of mental acuity on the recipient’s part and is often used in reference to members of rival broods. The females themselves cluster together in packs of two to four, where they plot against the members of other clusters. Indeed, the most intense plottings are directed among sisters from the same brood not present in the particular cluster. Words such as “bitch” and “stuck-up” are used with great frequency.

Inebriated males urinate and sing together in a bonding ritual. All the while, the mating ritual subtly progresses. Males feign interest in discussion furthered by the females, while they converse with the females’ breasts. Eventually the females, in a state of Keystone-induced estrus, choose their males and pairs retire for coitus or premature ejaculation.

When the last of the female clusters depart, rejected males return to their private nests to sulk and masturbate; the occasional incidents of a pledge vomiting highlight the deflated atmostphere. I am ushered aside by the brood chieftan and asked to pledge. I politely decline. Leaving the house I close my study, and though I didn’t get to witness the fabled elephant walk, I left inspired for my next study: I hope to explore the status of token minorities here at the university.

Dr. Thomas is the Russell L. Hibbert professor of Anthropology at U.C. Berkeley and will soon publish a groundbreaking paper on the impact of the English Muffin on contemporary society.