Dorm History

Publisher's objections force new dorm name

by Dean Roller

One hundred victims of the Institute's housing shortage have recently found themselves residents of a house without a name. The auxiliary dormitory located at 282-290 Massachusetts Avenue was heretofore dubbed Random House until legal complications necessitated the search for a new name.

The events leading up to the present situation took shape in September when the future residents decided to name their dormitory Fasset House. Dean Wadleigh, however, was widely quoted as stating emphatically, "I'll be damned if I will support a move to put a first class name on a second class facility." At first nothing more than a poor pun, Random House gradually became the accepted name due to lack of a suitable substitute. Dean Wadleigh acquiesced to the new residents' decision and went so far as to cosign a letter with House President Dan Fingerman inviting Bennet Cerf to the dedication ceremony to be held in February. Over the Christmas holiday, however, Wadleigh received a letter from the attorneys of Random House Inc. of New York requesting "with reluctance" that the residents "refrain from naming the House Random House" and that they "discontinue the use of such titles as Random House Rag and Random House Revenger on any publications."

The search for a new name is once again underway. Strong possibilities thus far include Maxwell House (after the illustrious British physicist James Clark Maxwell), Gross House, 288, Robert Hall, Westing House, and Bleak House. Another helpful suggestion was to seek out a second class alumnus after whom the house would appropriately be named. The search goes on.


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