Pranks from Reed's Web Conference Site

From Chris Hallstrom '92
On April 1, 1988, all campus phones were rerouted to Eastport. I assume the perps chose our dorm because it was the smallest, but maybe someone had it in for one of us. Several days later, we were still getting calls for the coffee shop.

From Mark McLean '70
What about the one where the new cross-canyon bridge was made to look like a freeway ramp? I missed that one, but I heard a lot about it.

From William Abernathy '88
Malcolm X Boulevard in Portland was the work of Prankmaster Extraordinaire Igor Vamos '93. There was a controversy in the late '80s over the renaming of Union Avenue to Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., spearheaded by a woman named Rosalie Huff (she lives in that strange house on Belmont with the lawn sign which reads: "Fungus under the nails? Try Malaleuca Tea Tree Oil!"). The original plan for MLK was to rename Front Avenue, but downtown business leaders nixed the idea, preferring instead the "more appropriate" move of renaming Union Ave. A crack squad of Reedie pranksters descended on downtown Portland in a lightning pre-dawn raid. Every sign (including freeway overpass exit markers) which said "Front Ave." was replaced (covered) by a fresh sign which read "Malcolm X Blvd." Same font, same size, same color. Perfect. The city was well-spoofed, though unmotivated to change Front Street's moniker to commemorate any slain civil rights leaders. Rosalie Huff was quoted in the Oregonian: "I felt as if I'd been struck by lightning." It was a masterwork of prankery. They even had special "historical" style signs for street markers in old town. It took people a while to figure out the signs were a prank and I think the freeway sign was up the better part of a day until they could get a work crew capable of removing it. Igor pulled a number of other Portland area pranks and went on to achieve national attention as the spokesman for the Barbie Liberation Front.


Prankmaster Extraordinaire Igor Vamos '93


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