Primal Scream

The current temperature at 1 a.m. Jan. 13 is 15 degrees here in Cambridge. I just got home from Harvard Yard, where I just saw about 500 naked people. There are several traditions at Harvard that are long-standing, enduring and just plain weird. There is the touching and kissing of John Harvard’s foot. Trying to have sex in the stacks. And, perhaps the strangest of them all. Running through campus naked on the night before exams. This is Primal Scream. It starts off literally as a scream. At Midnight on the night before the beginning of Final Exams, students gather on Harvard Yard for a ritualistic scream. Then hundreds of them strip naked and do a lap, or two, around Harvard Yard. The Harvard Band – dressed in blazers and shorts – gathered in front of John Harvard to play while the screamers run. As you can imagine, there are more men runners than women. And there is actually nothing sexual about the sprint. The students run through the yard in a blaze and the whole thing only lasts about 20 minutes. The thing that amazed me the most was after the Scream was over. While we gawkers went home several naked students blissfully walked around Harvard Yard as if nothing was odd about the fact they were buck-naked. Playing in the snow and looking for their friends, with seemingly not a care in the world. What a scream. Check out Tommy Tomlinson’s blog for more new on primal scream.



This is not my photo. It originally ran in the Crimson last year).

One of these five people will run for president one day. (Note: This is not my photo. It originally ran in the Crimson last year).






Published in: on January 13, 2009 at 6:52 am  Comments (5)  

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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. This year I think it was only a hundred ppl in bday suits and maybe about 200 audience.

  2. Wow, can’t wait to see which one will run for president! hahah

  3. wow, now “trying to have sex in the stacks” is a tradition I could probably embrace. I bet a Clark Atlanta U graduate would be a novelty up there 😉

  4. heiii I want too see I don’t lik it the toof sh’is have somthing not good & im so so sorry for that’s but his the true

  5. Generally I do not post on blogs, but I would like to say that this post really forced me to do so, Excellent post!

    I’m Out! 🙂

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