Title: “Canadian Ground Fruit”
Customary Lore: Prank
Material Lore: Food
Julie Mayberry is from Greenwich, Connecticut and is a member of the 2020 class at Dartmouth. She is planning on being a History or English major, and was interviewed on 11/2/16 in Baker Library at Dartmouth College.
Before arriving at Dartmouth for the start of her freshman fall, the informant participated in First Year Trips. The informant was on her Hiking 2 trip when she first encountered the “Canadian Ground Fruit” lore item. The informant explains how she first encountered while hiking near Hanover.
During First Year Trips, incoming freshmen are placed into different outdoor activity groups, which are led by upperclassmen. At some point during the trip, one of the leaders will take a pineapple, cut off its stalk, and then partially bury it somewhere nearby without the freshmen seeing. The leaders will then lead the unsuspecting freshmen near the pineapple, in the hope that they discover it. Once discovered, the trip leaders will tell the freshmen that they have found a “Canadian Ground Fruit.” Of course, it is really just a pineapple, but it is a prank that is done to Dartmouth freshmen each year.
“I think that it was either day two or three on my hiking trip around Hanover when my trip leaders decided to play the ‘Ground Fruit’ prank on me and my trippees. We had stopped to eat lunch on a patch of grass on the side of the trail, when one of my trip leaders left the group to go ‘use the bathroom.’ I now know that he really went ahead on the trail to go plant the pineapple, so that my group would find it when we continued on the trail after lunch. After we all finished eating, my trip leaders led us back onto the trail and then about a minute or so later, my trip leader pointed at something sticking out of the dirt and said, ‘what is that?’. We all went over to go look at this weird thing in the ground and then the trip leader said, ‘I think it’s a Canadian Ground Fruit!’. I wasn’t really convinced but a couple of my trippees fell for it pretty hard and didn’t get that it was really just a pineapple the entire time. It was pretty entertaining to poke fun at the gullible trippees for falling for it.”
“Looking back on the prank, I can’t believe that a group of 18 year-olds were really that gullible. I do think that it is pretty funny looking back on it and I’m sure that it was a fun prank for my trip leaders to play on us.”
This customary prank is something that I remember from my own First Year Trip. My trip leaders played this prank on me and I think that it made for a great memory from freshman year.
Collector’s Name: John Mayberry
Tags/Keywords: Customary Lore, Prank, Material Lore, Food, First Year Trips, Canadian Ground Fruit