The Eighth Page

Phillipian Satire: New Student Roped Into Cult-Pyramid Scheme (not Nine Square)

WARNING. Do NOT join a group called “Goap.” I did and barely lived to tell the tale. It was spring of 2021, and I was an impressionable Freshman at the Club Fair. (This would never be an issue now that I am a headstrong fearless Lower).

It all started when I walked past their table. “Jessica, Come to our table. Jessica, we need you. We love you, Jessica. You are so beautiful.” 

I was entranced. By the looks of the table, you could not tell what the club was attempting to achieve. Simply a black and white sign with “Goap” in plain letters. I had never seen any members of the club before, yet they knew my name. This turned out to be the same with every club, but Goap felt more personal. Like they really knew my name. 

“We meet in Gelb at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesdays,” said their leader, while looking deeply into my eyes. She held a hand out to me and said, “We would love to see you there. If you finish your WebAssign in time.” How did she know I was in math?? This was getting creepy. No matter my apprehension, I felt driven to the club. That Tuesday, I was initiated. 

We were all at the high tables in that biology classroom with the Snakes, when I saw the leader being carried in. Everyone cheered as she entered. Was she a Blue Key Head? Or had she dropped a plate in Commons? 

“Hello Friends. I see we have some new members today. Welcome to Goap, your key to acceptance and love at Phillips Academy. May you never sit in Lower Left pretending to be on the phone again.” At this point I had no idea what I had gotten myself into, but there was no leaving now. 

The leader pulled something out of the chest in the middle of the room. The lights were off and the rest of the members began chanting,  “O domine Goap, salva nos, doce nos, permitte nos.” I was terrified but without even thinking I joined the hymn. A rush of life filled my body and I felt as if I was free finally, I was one with God and French Toast Bagels and all things great. 

I arrived at the next meeting intending to commit to this new life I have found. Goap was my home. I walked into the next meeting ready to submit but then I heard the fatal words. “Where is your $20 entry fee and the three friends we told you to bring along?” My Econ paper on Bernie Madoff was coming back to me. OH NO! It was a pyramid scheme all along!! I have been tricked like those poor Soul Cycle moms. I asked to go to the bathroom and made a run for it. That was the last Goap saw of your humble narrator. 

Although I have never felt more at home as I did that one glorious night, I still today have my 20 dollars… and my freedom.