Tag Archives: celebration


“TDX-mas” Initiation/RitualScreen Shot 2016-05-31 at 4.41.43 PM

  • Informant Info
    • Sophomore Year
  • Type of Lore
    • Customary
  • Language
    • English
  • Country of Origin
    • United States
  • Social / Cultural Context
    • Dartmouth Fraternity
  • Informant’s Comments
    • Taken light-hearted yet seriously as all brothers of the house partake in the festivity. The basement is completely covered in Christmas-styled wrapping paper. This is done for an end of the term party that the entire school is welcome to join.
  • Collector’s Comments
    • Anonymity in order to not reveal identity of fraternity and informant
    • Further research of publicly available fraternity information revealed that this practice is also done at other campuses that have this fraternity, such as MSU, dating back past 2010.

Pushing Coach into Pool

  1. Title: Pushing Coach into Pool after a Win
  2. Informant: Andrew North, 24, Male.  Andrew North was a four year member of the Dartmouth Men’s Swimming and diving team. In his fourth year on the team he served as one of two captains of the men’s team. He has lived across the US as well as internationally; contributing to his broad knowledge of the national and global swimming communities: his states of residence include Indiana, Texas, Arizona, Tennessee, Nebraska as well as the Philippines. Andrew continued to swim in all of these places, spanning over more than a decade of competitive swimming.
  3. Customary: Celebration
  4. Language: English
  5. Country of Origin: United States
  6. Social / Cultural Context: This ritual would be performed after a victory in a competition at a high level.
  7. No audio, transcribed Skype interview.
  8. Transcript/ Text: “Well, there are a lot of pretty standard interactions between a swimmer and coach, whether it is at a meet or during practice.  But those are important all the standard symbols that you might see from a coach during a race. But something that was always really unique to swimming outside of that kind of day to day grind type stuff is that every other sports team dumps a gatorade bucket on their coach or water bucket on their coach when they win a championship, but swimming is different in that we push our Coach in the pool. I’ve always thought that was something really unique that swimmers do when they celebrate.”
  9. Informant’s comments:Andrew had also stated that he was on a very successful team in high school and they had celebrated in this fashion numerous times, however he did not have the opportunity to do so during his Dartmouth career.
  10. Collector’s comments: This ritual was especially unique to swimming as it involves a large body of water.
  11. Tags/ Keywords: Celebration

Marine Core Birthday Ball Celebration

Marine Core Birthday Ball Celebration

Title: Birthday Ball Celebration

Informant info: Craig Serpa, marine. He was stationed in San Diego.

Type of lore: Customary, Ritual, Celebration

Language: English

Country of Origin: USA

Social / Cultural Context: Craig Serpa was interviewed at Dartmouth College. Craig was asked about any folklore or stories related to his training. He described what he thought of as folklore and then told me about the Marine Birthday Ball Celebration. Every year the Marine Core holds a ball in order to celebrate the birthday of the marine core. At every birthday, there is a cake cutting ceremony where the oldest marine and the youngest marine are honored by getting the first pieces of cake, which represents passing on tradition from the old to the new. The also play the commandants message.

Associated file:


Interviewer: Well now I have fun things to talk about. Did you hear any ghost stories, during training or while you were stationed. So its all about folklore—so any ghost stories related, or really any stories at all—legends, myths, related to your base camp or training experience.

C: So when I think of folklore, I think of passed down oral traditions. Mainly. The marine core actually, we have, a specific marine core order that deals with the marine core birthday. Nov 10, 1775—have a birthday ball celebration every year, and its, they, part of the actual military order is we have a cake cutting ceremony and then the oldest marine and the youngest marine are honored in the cake cutting ceremony where they present themselves the first piece of cake and its supposed to resemble the passing on of the traditions from the oldest to the youngest marine and there’s always—you play the commandants message—birthday message is played every year. And they do the reading of the 14th commandant marine core—general Lejeune? Reread his birthday message as part of the military order now every single year. So that’s a past tradition, oral tradition.

Ghost stories? I would say no.

Informant’s comments: Craig told me that a celebration happens around the world no matter where you are. He said that for most marines, most of their fondest memories happened at this ball.

Collector’s comments: Craig was very excited to tell me about this tradition. He said that this was his favorite event of the year.

EE Party

Title: EE Party

Informant Info: Josie Nordrum is a 20 year-old junior undergraduate at Dartmouth College. She has been climbing for two years and is heavily involved with the Dartmouth Mountaineering Club. Josie was born in San Francisco, CA and still lives in Corte Madero, CA. She first learned to climb on her DOC Freshman Trip. Josie’s biggest climbing phobia is exposure. She loves the feeling of satisfaction after a good climb.

Date Collected: 5/15/16

Place Collected: Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH

Type of Lore: Customary, Celebration

Language: English

Country of Origin: United States

Social/Cultural Context: The EE party stands for the exotic and erotic party thrown by the Dartmouth Mountaineering Club at the end of winter term every year since 1995. It is a celebration of the last day of winter term and the beginning of spring climbing. This is especially important for climbers because in the winter climbers are only able to ice climb (ice climbing is not nearly as fun and much more dangerous than rock climbing).

Associated File:


Lore: Due to the informant’s concerns, the specifics of the party were asked to be held secret. However, the party involves a pre-party ritual meant to bring every member into the right mindset for the night. Most members show up to the party drunk and wearing bizarre costumes made from any item but actual clothing. The party has no sexual undertones; it is simply a way to embrace oneself and have strictly platonic fun with friends.

Informant’s Comments: The EE party is a fun way to kick off the spring climbing season. It involves nudity and drinking, but is all in the spirit of fun, embracing oneself, and beginning the spring term. Celebration traditions include a email sent out every year to explain the party to the freshman and creative costumes. Some examples of the costumes worn to the party each year are just climbing rope and hallowed out pineapple shells.

Collector’s Comments: The EE party is an example of a ritual marking the end of something, this time the end of a winter. This a theme which is consistent throughout the majority of rock climbing folklore collected. The EE party is a celebration during the transition period between seasons. The absence of full clothing is related to the DMC’s willingness to embrace nudity and their own bodies. DMCers tend to view nudity as less of a taboo as mainstream society. Instead, they view it as a freedom of expression and a way to embrace their true selves. More than being just a fun celebration, the EE party helps welcome in the spring term and return of rock climbing.

Tags/Keywords: EE, erotic, exotic, party, nudity, DMC, spring, initiation, celebration