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We Tried to Talk to the Art History Grad Students and They Shot Us With a Crossbow

As a last-ditch effort to recruit more cultured staff members, this past weekend The Haystack reached out to the most sophisticated group of students on campus -- the Art History graduate students. Our plan was to approach their settlement with the standard offering of food and wine and woo them into joining our team. However, our scheme to push The Williams Record further into artistic oblivion was stifled when 4 of our 10 members had to be rushed to the hospital after being shot with a crossbow.

“How did 4 Haystack employees get shot? Well, the thing about crossbows is that if you know what you’re doing, you can shoot just as many people as if you had a normal bow, but you can shoot them from much further away. That’s how they got 4 people out of the 10” said CSS employee Dan Lockjaw, who watched the whole thing happen from the safety of his van. After we clarified that we wanted a statement about the events leading up to the shooting, and not the mechanics of crossbows, he said “Why? That’s not my job” and drove away very, very slowly. After this lead went cold, we decided to go directly to the source, and ask around in the GroupMe.

We discovered that the group of reporters had first attempted to contact the grad students via email, and in return the editor-in-chief received a messenger pigeon carrying a tiny scroll, tied to its ankle with a thin strand of hand-spun gold. The message read “Wee doth not respond to message relayed of screen; show thyself at our abode or receive no correspondence”.

“So obviously, we showed up unannounced,” said our Editor-in-Chief, who escaped unharmed because he hid behind other people. “We packed a picnic lunch with the foods and beverages we guessed they would like, and made our way over to the scary looking house where they live. We were just going to knock on the door, but then we noticed the moat.”

“It was crazy” said Staff Writer Ellie Gladstaff ‘24 with an arrow sticking out of her shoulder. “The moat was full of alligators.” They were actually crocodiles. We assume she was just confused because of the blood loss.

“Some of us stayed behind to fend them off, and the rest proceeded forward after we lowered the drawbridge. Again, we planned to knock on the door, but all we had to do was look up,” said media editor Derrick Derns, spoon-feeding Josh chicken broth from a styrofoam cup. “They were standing together, all of them, on a balcony. They seemed really bothered, because they started yelling at us -- well, it was more of a disappointed solicitation. They were like --

‘Halt! Stop where you are. You are not friends to this ground -- wherefore dost thou approach?’

“We told them we meant peace, and wanted to discuss their joining our team.

‘’An alliance? For the winter? What have you to offer our court?’

The one speaking, who was wearing a silly hat with a feather in it, gestured behind him to what looked like just two normal grad students wearing period costumes, stepping out of a pair of french doors.”

The situation turned hostile only when the group began to question the validity of their court.

“We were just confused and wanted to know how their power structure worked. Their king and queen were the same age as them, and they were the only ones wearing full costumes” relayed our other editor-in-chief, after Derns had to sub out because Gladstaff started to shiver and shake. “They weren’t even good costumes, like they clearly only spent like 45 dollars each of the outfits. Aren’t they art students? Shouldn’t they have people there who can sew? Also, art history, so shouldn’t they have been more appropriate? There was a mix of medieval and renaissance garb that didn’t seem quite historically accurate. We just wanted to ask some clarifying questions, and we did, and that’s when they started shooting.”

According to those who survived, our team was finally able to escape after they offered the grad students our worst staffer, Devin Brian, as a hostage. “They said ‘We’ll take him with the picnic basket, not alone’ said yet another one of our editors-in-chief. “Which is smart, because Devin is basically worthless without the basket that we made him carry.”

After the incident, one physically fine but emotionally wounded staff member approached the deans about the issue, but was turned away.

“Look, not to throw blame around, but it’s really your fault that this happened,” said Marlene Sandstrom, wearing a full suit of armor. “We know better than to lay siege to their fortress, and so should you.”

However, despite the casualties, the staff remains undeterred. “We’re going back again next week,” said our dumbest editor-in-chief. “I think we’ve actually got a pretty good plan. I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but let’s just say it involves a big fuckin wooden horse.”


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