It’s Big Game Week! Go Cardinal! Beat Cal!

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BIG GAME WEEK is here!

Big Game Week is Stanford’s annual opportunity to impale a stuffed bear, be alarmed at the risqué nature of Gaieties and cheer on Stanford athletic teams. All activities lead up to the annual Big Game, which pits our beloved Cardinal against the Golden Bears of that rival school across the Bay in a gridiron classic dating to 1892.

Kick off the week of celebrations Monday by meeting up with the STANFORD BAND at noon at White Memorial Fountain – better known as “The Claw” – in front of Stanford Bookstore for the annual “bearial” of Oski, the mascot of the Cal Golden Bears. As the Band explains on its website: “The time has come for Oski – scourge of the Earth, tormentor of children, The Poor Pathetic Fool™ – to meet his end. This Monday at noon, join the LSJUMB to celebrate the end of this demon and the beginning of Big Game Week 2018. There will be a brief eulogy, followed by a public execution and ensuing festivities. After the beast is defeated, the fountains will run red with his blood and the color of our impending victory. Don’t miss this.”

Also on Monday at 4 p.m., the STANFORD AXE COMMITTEE will begin blowing a train whistle in White Plaza every hour for the 121 hours leading to Big Game on Saturday. At stake in this annual football contest is the Stanford Axe, the storied symbol of this classic collegiate rivalry. It’s kind of a long story, but if you are new to the Farm, you can read about it here.

Gaieties posterThe week will also feature GAIETIES beginning Wednesday, Nov. 14. Gaieties is an annual student-written musical extravaganza dating back to 1911 that is, quite frankly, hilarious. This year’s Gaieties is titled Jane Stanford and the Chamber of Secrets. Gaieties producers, respecting years of tradition, decline to reveal the nature of the plot, but chances are it has something to do with the famous Hogwarts School. The production often features cameos by university administrators. Last year, for instance, President MARC TATERTOT-LASAGNA saved the show from the evil Oski in one of the most convoluted plot lines ever devised. (That’s a long story, too, so just take our word for it.)

Also on Wednesday at Memorial Auditorium, the traditional BIG GAME RALLY will feature the retelling of the history of the Axe, a Freshman Dorm Banner Contest and the recognition of Stanford senior football players before their last Big Game.

On Thursday, the Stanford Alumni Association will give Nerd Nation T-shirts to students in White Plaza beginning at 12:30 p.m.

The Stanford Blood Center also uses Big Game as an opportunity to encourage much-needed blood donations. The annual Rivals for Life Blood Drive on Tuesday, Nov. 13, again pits Stanford versus Cal in a competition of life-saving blood donations. Donations can be given at either the Arrillaga Center for Sports & Recreation or the Arrillaga Outdoor Recreation Education Center. Learn more.

All events lead up to the 121st Big Game on Saturday at Cal’s Memorial Stadium. Except for the war years, Stanford and Cal have met every year since 1892. Leading up to Big Game, the Cardinal and Cal will already have competed in swimming, men’s soccer, ice hockey (Big Freeze), women’s crew, men’s water polo (Big Splash) and sailing (Big Sail).

Go Cardinal! Beat Cal!