U of T engineers reclaim grease pole

Brute Force Committee members have set up a website detailing the September 9 theft of the grease pole.
Brute Force Committee members have set up a website detailing the September 9 theft of the grease pole.
Credit: 
Photo courtesy of Brute Force Committee

For the first time since the early 1950s, Queen’s is getting the short end of the pole.

The Brute Force Committee (BFC), a “totally fictitious” group of University of Toronto engineering students, removed the grease pole from the hands of Queen’s students for the first time on Saturday September 9, only a few short hours after the class of ’04 reached its peak.

“It is the sad duty of the engineering society executive to inform you that our grease pole is in the possession of some random students from U of T,” said Peter Dawe, vice president information of Queen’s Engineering Society (EngSoc).

Although many engineers at Queen’s were hoping that the rumour about the whereabouts of what the EngSoc website refers to as the “core of [their] being” was just a prank organized by cruel upper year students, it has been confirmed that the pole was indeed stolen last week. This event is sad news to most Queen’s students, engineers or not, as the grease pole is one of the many traditions that are upheld and honoured at this university.

After travelling to Toronto this weekend, President of the Engineering Society, Victoria Creighton, is “confident that the pole is coming back.”

The pole was originally an upright from Varsity Stadium at U of T, until several Queen’s engineers made off with it half a century ago. Ever since, the pole has been used in a ritualistic ceremony that signals the end of frosh week, where the grease-slicked pole is erected to its full 24 feet in a a pit of unidentifiable liquid so that the frosh can climb it and retrieve a tam from the top.

“I assure you that the pole is indeed in the hands of the Brute Force Committee, and will not be returned to the Queen’s Engineers until they carry out our demands,” said Mario Baker, chief of the BFC in response to an email sent by The Journal.

BFC remains a faceless group notorious on the U of T campus for causing many a ruckus and organizing generally annoying stunts, such as apprehending the sign that hung outside of the Varsity, U of T’s student newspaper and defacing it beyond repair.

Among the numerous demands, found in a press release that can be accessed through www.mariosbakery.com and by following the “Staff” and “Beverage and Food Committee” links, are beer in a tree, two turtle necks, three French toasts, four pounds of back bacon, five golden toques, six packs of 24s, seven packages of cigarettes, eight comic books, as well as the Waterloo Tool, Ottawa Cast Iron Tool, University of Alberta’s Wolf, BC Rock, RMC Ammo Dump Ryerson’s Pride, a shrubbery, the Guelph and Lakehead Cannons, along with a case of Kraft Dinner and Mister Noodle. However, the BFC has yet to publicize all of its demands for the grease pole’s return to Queen’s campus.

“This lapse in security is sure to cost the Queen’s Engineers dearly, especially their pride if they want the pole back in one (or two, three, four) piece(s).”

The BFC has not yet officially set out their demands, however, and Queen’s Engineering Society has “no intention of giving into any demands.”

An abundance of photographs, accessible from the website www.nopicturesnoproof.com tracks the movements of the BFC, from their clever guise as spectators at the pole climbing event to their attempts at sawing the pole in half so that it could fit in their inadequately-sized moving van.

According to ‘Mario Baker’, the faces of the committee will not be visibile, as Queen’s Engineering Society has posed the threat of legal action.

Many are baffled that such a heist could have been pulled off without anyone noticing, especially so soon after the pole was the centre of attention for hundreds of engineers attempting to climb it. According to Queen’s Engineering Society, this misfortune is not the fault of any student, as it occurred after the pole had been put under the watch of the University.

Reports from the Engineering Society indicate that the administration of both universities, in particular the deans of engineering, are taking this matter very seriously and are working to resolve it as quickly as possible.

Both sides agree that the situation is moving to a point where it has gone too far.

The Engineering Society is aware some engineering students may be planning revenge as a way to express their anger at the recent turn of events.

According to Creighton, “Our dean of engineering has spoken to the dean of engineering at U of T and both are on side to get this resolved as soon as possible because retaliation for them is their worst nightmare.”

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