The fall of 1979 saw the Chefs take up where they had left off after the Butler pieing that previous spring. The small amount of notoriety that our organization had gained by making AP and UPI wires after pieing Butler had fueled our enthusiasm. We didn't hear from him or the authorities so we continued our rampage. The question that would occasionally come up when friends came over and conversation would center on the latest pieing was; “Why are you doing it?” Our answer was usually, "Why not?"
We would hear conversations about the Chefs in various bars and restaurants that we frequented. With eight pieings behind us after our spring term debut, and new pies in a new term, we were starting to gain a following.
The pies were beginning to fly like locusts in a biblical plague. The authorities and the professor's didn't know what to make of it. They also didn't know how to stop it. Every couple of weeks another professor would meet his destiny with a pie in the eye and there was no correlation at all between the professors who were chosen, and the pies of discipline. That was one of the advantages of randomly picking our targets. The main criterion was that the exit door to the classroom was near a spot where we could park our getaway car. Our message in doing this was that no one was safe. It was us versus them, the establishment.
Mick, Marcus, Les and I sat in the attic room on Burcham one night in mid November, getting high.
"What did you guys think of “Apocalypse Now” last night?" Mick asked, hitting the bong.
I tossed the match into the ashtray. "Man, we were all tripping our brains out."
Mick remembered the tons of light bulbs that were under the movie theater’s marquee, bathing the sidewalk in yellow light when we all exited after the show. "Those lights outside made everything seem so surreal."
“I almost freaked out, man", said Marcus.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
Mick threw in; "We were all so stoned."
Marcus got serious. "No, man. I mean, like, I almost lost it.”
We needed some clarification. "Was the trip that bad?"
"No, man. I lost my older brother in Viet Nam." Marcus said.
"I never knew that." Les stated.
"It's something I put out of my mind a long time ago. That film, along with the acid, was almost too much.”
"Are you okay now?" Mick asked.
"Yeah, I'm all right. Thanks. Let's head up on the roof, I could use some fresh air."
We made our way to the roof through my makeshift closet behind the curtains in front of the doorway to the stairs. Once out the door a quick turn to the left and up the shingles placed us on the flat part of the roof above the attic. From there the view was of the parking lot surrounding our house, a middle-school soccer field, and the apartment complex next door. We all sat looking at the traffic rounding the corner and passing by on Burcham under the streetlights.
"Well, the pieings have gotten us press" I mentioned.
"Yeah, man. I'm starting to hear conversations about us everywhere", Marcus threw in.
Mick was thinking on a bigger scale, "How long are we going to do this?"
"I don't know. How long is a piece of string? I said.
“For the rest of our lives, man", Marcus said.
"Or until we're caught", came the realistic facts from Les.
I didn't like to hear that kind of talk. I felt that it somehow jinxed things.
"We're not going to get caught. Nothing ever came out of the Butler pieing, right?"
"Yeah, I wonder why. The DPS have our names. They even came to Les' room."
"Think about it, Marcus. Butler needs to press charges before they can do anything. He's scared that we'll blow the whistle to his wife about his affair with Carrie.”
"Let's hope it stays that way", Marcus muttered as he watched a car turn the corner on the street below and disappear off into the night.
Mick pointed out that it was getting toward the end of term and that Thanksgiving was a week away.
"Yeah. Christmas will be here before we know it" said Les.
Marcus wanted to bring our tally up to date. "How many pieings have we done this term, Billius?
"Seven. That brings our total to fifteen so far. We've probably done enough this term. Let's start again in the winter.
Marcus raised his beer, "Viva Les Chefs!"
We all raised our beers and joined in the toast as we a looked down into the parking lot to see Phil's car driving off.
"There goes Phil to another Amway meeting." Les observed.
I shook my head, thinking about the meeting that I had crashed before the term began.
"What a bunch of bullshit.”
"You know what they say, don't you?" asked Mick.
I turned; "What?"
"You can't sell soap to a friend", came Mick's reply as he finished his beer. The four of us gazed off from the rooftop and wondered what the future held for all of us.
YOU ARE READING
A Pie In Every EyeNon-Fiction
A. W. Ellison, A. K. A. Billius, was a Chef. This is the story of The Chefs...Campus Pie Assassins, as they pied professors during lectures in humungous lecture halls at Michigan State University from 1979 to 1981. The story covers how The Chefs ca...