Applications for next year’s Resident Assistant roles at Otero took a dark turn last Saturday after what presented itself as a lighthearted opportunity for Resident Fellows to meet prospective RAs resulted in blood being spilled on the dorm’s carpeted floors. According to one survivor, Julia Juárez ’21, the applicants began exchanging confused glances when the interviewing RF began to move from innocuous questions like “if you could spend the annual budget on one kind of snack, why would it be Welch’s fruit snacks?” to more ominous ones like “what was your most grotesque experience with a Stanford community so far and how did you indulge in it?” or “if you were out of town and received word that a resident had to be executed as punishment for some crime, would you take United or Delta to get here?”

“Maybe I should’ve been suspicious when I came into the cottage and there were a lot more bloodstained medieval weapons on the walls than I expected. But I thought, ‘well, some RFs are just quirky like that,’ and besides, I didn’t want to appear rude by asking about it,” Juárez recalled. “We’d gotten to a point where the RF, John Smeech, had made us watch this five-minute video of a dogfight, and reordered our reactions.” Smeech then slipped out of the room towards the end of the video, returning with a pool cue and a trussed-up student over one shoulder, later identified as Brendon Miller ’24. As the projector shut off with a dramatic wink, Smeech announced to the shell-shocked applicants that only a few of them would be making it out of the room alive. “But those that do,” he clarified, “will be next year’s RAs.”

“H-he said that here he had a depressed frosh. He said that we had half an hour to either help him feel better or disembowel him, but only as many of us as there were RA positions could take credit for it. A-a-and he snapped the pool cue, just like that, and threw it into the room. Nobody did anything for a moment. And th-then—” Juárez shuddered, her remaining eye fixed on something in the distance. “All that was left was a single, shriveled kidney.”

At press time, R&DE announced that it would be considering expanding Smeech’s interview methods to the whole campus in hopes of speeding up the application process.

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