Chapter 4

Oh, Christmas Tree

Just after Thanksgiving break, the Chairman was inspired... His inspiration was not for a drop; it was for a video. He storyboarded it and spent two nights shooting background footage for it with The F**k and BurgerMan. Several days worth of preparation was put into the actual drop. When it was completed, the drop and video cost in excess of $200. This drop added two-way radios, a police scanner (to monitor campus police activity) and second video camera to the usual arsenal of equipment. About a week before Christmas break, BurgerMan, The F**k, CompuButcher and the Chairman carried an innocuous looking green military-style duffel bag and two backpacks full of equipment to the top of the CII stairwell. The duffel contained a douglas fir Christmas tree and ornaments. The F**k and BurgerMan decorated the tree while the Chairman taped it. When they were finished, control of camera one was passed to CompuButcher. The Chairman took still photographs of the tree then made his way down to the bottom of the stairwell. He set up video camera two outside a window, aiming it at ground zero. He signaled the top crew that he was in position. Approximately ten seconds later, artificial snow started falling past the window. Several seconds after that, he heard a loud "whoosh" followed by a bang as the tree fell. He yanked open the door to the stairwell and ran in. As he snapped several pictures of the fallen tree he heard the rapid footsteps of his comrades several floors above him. He then left the building, meeting the top crew at the back door. By this time, all three cameras as well as tree ornament boxes and the green duffel bag had been stowed in the droppers' backpacks. The four calmly walked past a campus police car speeding towards the CII on the way back to the dorm. They later found out (from John Doe who was listening to a police scanner in his dorm room) that the top crew had been spotted running on the seventh floor and a call went out to security for three erpetrators. The only reason they weren't stopped -- there were four of them by the time they were spotted.