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RCSU Mascots in the Wars

Jul 11 2008 19:00
The Dark Knight
The mascots of the former Royal College of Science, Theta and Jezebel, have suffered a couple of mishaps.
Jez was brought back on a lorry - the first un-powered journey for a decade

It has been a bad week for the RCSU mascots, with the motorised mascot Jezebel ending up stranded by the South Coast and half of violate mascot Theta nearly being thrown out with the rubbish.

Goose Nearly Cooked

The provisional black hole take the Theta MkIV bulb out for a drink, with July 10th's copy of Reporter

Theta's mishap occurred after cleaners began emptying lockers in the Sir Alexander Fleming building, next to the former Life Sciences Union office. Theta had been stored in separate pieces in those lockers for a number of years, but it appears no-one had thought to check up on the mascot during the end-of-year clear out.

Theta was discovered by chance as an RCS alumnus walked past the locker room and saw Theta piled up with the rubbish. The bulb section and part of the central rod have now been moved to a safe(r) location, following the intervention of the RCS alumnus. The RCSU had been storing Theta in separate locations and it is hoped the top section is still around somewhere, however incoming RCSU President David Charles said he had "no idea" where it might be. In landfill somewhere, perhaps?

It is rumoured that the RCS alumni will require a ransom for the return of Theta, probably involving Charles doing something embarrassing for charity to make up for such a screw-up. It has also been noted by those who had seen the Theta previously taken by Guilds that it was in fact the wrong one - that Theta had been badly scuffed up and was in quite a state, and lacked various RCSU markings. The Theta retrieved from SAF is the genuine one.

Chuff, chuff, chuff, clonk

The RCSU motorised mascot Jezebel, was left in considerably better care after getting into difficulties at the weekend. Sheared bolts meant the 4 tonne Dennis Fire Engine began to shake various vital components apart, with accompanying bad noises. After a swift rebuild at Amberley Working Museum in West Sussex, the return journey stopped very quickly indeed thanks to a banging noises coming from the engine.

Not quite as bad as it looks...

College were able to come to the rescue thanks to contractors on the Eastside project (and Southside), Laing O'Rourke. A few frantic phone calls on Wednesday between College's Commercial Services and Estates divisions, the RCS Motor Club, and Laing's Select Plant subsidiary saw a low loader dispatched to retrieve the 92-year-old mascot early on Thursday morning, arriving back in College by lunchtime. It was the first time Jez had been unable to return under her own power in almost exactly a decade. Early indications are that the damage should not keep Jez off the road for too long, much to the upset of incoming DPEW Hannah Theorodorou, who commented "let it rust".

The recovery did have the rather amusing sight of the rugby team dragging Jez around - in the form of a vinyl sticker on the side of a minibus.

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Discussion about “RCSU Mascots in the Wars”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
1. WTF   
Jul 11 2008 19:09

This is just silly, the RCSU own mascotry club stealing its mascot. Come on Ashley. Don't you think it?s a little weird that theta was found in the trash. How likely is that?

Maybe you should investigate...

2. Dan   
Jul 11 2008 20:19


The sound of Ashley scraping the bottom of the barrell.........

3. ha   
Jul 11 2008 20:48

Yea, it sounds like Ashley is struggling a little, today.

Jul 11 2008 20:49

Very likely - it was being stored in the LifeSci lockers for the past 2 years, and the cleaners had started chopping the locks off and throwing everything out because it was the end of the year.

Dan - it's the silly season! And I wanted a picture of Jez on the front page again before I stop being editor - I managed to get one in just after taking over ;)

5. Tom   
Jul 11 2008 20:54

At least there's something else to read other than the perpetual war of attrition that is the discussion about Majid Ahmed

6. crazy   
Jul 11 2008 21:01

You know there is only so much hatred that you can show the RCS and its president before you look bitter. He earned you several thousand for the engineers just to help students.Also Ashley as an RCS alumni myself I can point that the there are no individuals who have ever been in the RCS who can?t contact the president. If he couldn?t he or she was very stupid. I don?t believe that anyone would talk to you before the president. Nor do I believe given how strongly the new president feels about theta that he didn?t know where it was. It seems to me Ash that you don?t know the details and are pretending.

Jul 11 2008 21:13

crazy - You can believe I'm making it up if you want. The status concerning Theta is correct, as described above. I saw it in with the rubbish and helped move it - the reason I was contacted was because I was on site and able to lend a hand shifting it. I suspect the president wasn't contacted because the fact Theta was in the rubbish to start with means they couldn't be trusted with it...

There's no hatred towards David Charles, just gentle poking fun at him for nearly having his mascot thrown away. He does get rather worked up about mascotry issues!

If someone in the RCSU thinks they have the 'real' Theta, or know where it is, they don't...

Jul 11 2008 21:32

Ashley given the things that you have said both now and in the past I would disagree. So are you categorically stating that there is an individual in the RCS that believes that you (an engineer and editor of live) are more trustworthy than the president of the RCS. That?s insane Ash. Someone is messing with you. You saw it in the trash but that could equally mean that RCS alumni placed it there and got you. I don?t know about you Ash but that doesn?t add up.

Jul 11 2008 21:37

True, the alumnus in question may well have "got me". But what you're forgetting is that I'm also an honorary life member of the RCSU, for assisting them on many occasions last year, and have been chairman of the RCS Motor Club for two years.

I very much doubt the alumnus in question would try and 'get me', but hey, it's possible.

10. @ash   
Jul 11 2008 21:48

So you admit on live that you can?t verify your facts. May I point out the union does have a policy on publishing untrue statements. Look if you have a problem with the RCS or the President that your issue. I must say this looks like a clear attempt to use live to damage the RCS president and given there is no proof to support your claim and that your story sound frankly ridiculous I have to ask what?s your problem.

11. Dan   
Jul 11 2008 23:33

Why has this quite obvious tongue-in-cheek article descended into this farcical argument?

Its a f*cking mascot. get the f*ck over it.

There's no conspiracy, its probably all a bit of a mistake and after all, term's ended, its the summer (well apparently anyway), so just chiiilllllaaaax bruvvvvv.

I'm pretty sure Ashley isn't being malicious. This utterly retarded tendency to cause argument is exactly whats wrong with Imperial's student media. We can't do f*ck all without someone badmouthing it.

Jul 12 2008 00:12

You're wrong, Dan.

I once saw Ashley punch a kitten.*

*By punch I mean "do nothing to" and kitten I mean "no-one"

Jul 12 2008 00:30

I think someone has got a little overwrought about a violate mascot here! Given that Ash is indeed an honorary life member of RCSU (not to mention amount of time he's dedicated to Jez over the past few years) I think he'd probably be a very safe pair of hands for a mascot -- more so perhaps than a certain killjoy CCU president!

As far as the incoming DPEW's comment about Jez -- and presumably the other motorized mascots -- Jez, Bo' and Clem are pretty unique as far as mascots for universities are concerned, and I think the good publicity they bring Imperial as a whole when they are out on the road is more than worth their upkeep!

14. Dan   
Jul 12 2008 00:47

There's nothing more scary than having Ashley drive (trundle) towards you in Jez. Your life flashes before your eyes before you realise you can probably just step out the way of it; and thats after a quick glance at the newspaper and a cup of tea.

Jul 12 2008 02:21

1) RSC Motor Club is in the RCC,

2) Ashley doesn't have a driving licence,

3) It is very easy to put a mascot in a very very safe place, not realising someone might just stumble upon it in an end of term clean up........

.....door banged close, tires screeching out of the drive, need to check something at in college!!!!

Jul 12 2008 08:33

Can I point out that the most likely RCSU alumni to be around college are in fact ex-members of the RCS Motor Club as they regularly come to help with Jezebel. Therefore it would seem very likely that such a person would contact the Motor Club before contacting the President. Just the other day we had an RCSU Alumnus come to the garage because he was looking to purchase an RCSU Tie.

On a lighter note ? Does this mean that the theta that John Matthews paid good money to retrieve from the CGCU was in fact just a rather fortunately shaped piece of scrape metal."

17. rumour   
Jul 12 2008 08:45

I don?t think so I heard an interesting rumour. Apparently, last year one was damaged. Now a new shiny bit is found.

Jul 12 2008 09:14

Dan - you mean having me chauffeur driven towards you of course, given "Another City man"'s second point. I expect you could only manage half a cup of tea with one of our more 'racy' drivers behind the wheel though. The other half would end up splatted across the radiator.

I don't understand why people get so uptight about mascotry, its a bit of fun. What is especially annoying however is that the RCSU have been complaining about how Guilds scuffed Theta, because it was so valuable now the person who created it has sadly passed away, but then nearly have it chucked out.

In response to an apparent attack on my integrity - it is very hard to verify things 100%, but everything on Live! generally comes from trusted sources. It's possible one of those sources could trick me one day, or get it wrong, and articles have been revised in the past when this has occurred. However, to suggest the whole thing is a fabrication is ridiculous, and those in the RCSU last year will tell you that the idea of me using Live! to try and damage the RCSU (by talking about a mascot???) is preposterous.

  • I provided the artwork for the RCSU logo when it re-formed, having spent a day recreating the old RCS crown based on a very small, poor quality colour version RCSMC had on its website.
  • I have helped move Theta in the past and - along with colleagues in RCS Motor (who happened to be Guildsmen) - carried Theta in public for the first time in years at the Lord Mayor's Show in 2005.
  • I was trusted enough to know the location of Theta last year, even though I was a Guildsman.

Now you can whine all you want about how I'm a Guildsman and Live! Editor and hence untrustworthy, but I think you'll find a large number of people would disagree with you. There is only one thing which I can't be 100% sure of about this article, and that's whether Theta was deliberately placed in the rubbish to trick me, or whether it had genuinely been taken out by the cleaners. Given there was a pile of rubbish on the floor next to Theta, I'm reasonably certain that's what happened. It's a pretty c**ppy trick if you con Live! into publishing a false story, but lose your mascot in the process. Last night I asked the current keepers of Theta for some proof, and the article has now been updated with a photo to reflect this.

Once again: if people in the RCSU think they have all the bits of Theta, they don't. Not Theta MkIV anyway, which as of 1975 is the current one. If you've got a Theta MkV, then MkIV should either be in the round pond, or somewhere safe, on display, having been declared inviolate.

19. WTF   
Jul 12 2008 10:16

Aww, ashley you sound stresseed. However, I must point out that the story is the RCS have theta and one particular individual outside the RCSU in the RCS doesn't know whats going on.

Jul 12 2008 11:59

"the story is the RCS have theta and one particular individual outside the RCSU in the RCS doesn't know whats going on"

OK. Let me know when/if you want the MkIV back then...

21. WTF   
Jul 12 2008 12:36

Lol, whatever.

Jul 12 2008 14:41

Wow, this has really been blown out of all proportion. I'm surprised it's even made it onto Live!

The details in the story and Ashley's version of events are correct. If I had not chanced across the parts of Theta, it would be in landfill by now.

I chose to contact Ashley because he was most likely to be on campus, has been a friend of the RCSU for many years and would know of a safe place to put Theta.

There was no attempt at a trick (what kind of lame 'trick' would that be anyway?) and how you could construe the article as an attack on David Charles is beyond me. I simply wanted to see Theta being protected rather than being lost, something the Committee this year have failed to do.

I have subsequently emailed the person responsible for the mascots (not David Charles) and received no reply. If the other members of the 'Provisional Black Hole' would like to get in touch they can email my address above.

Jul 13 2008 13:10

Obviously someone in the RCSU is feeling a bit embarrassed.

WTF - if you think the RCSU has Theta, maybe you could produce a datable picture of it? The 'provisional black hole' seem to have done so and it seems a bit tricky for you both to have it.

24. WTF   
Jul 13 2008 13:22

I don't think the location is in dispute it's the trash movement. The proof is the college timetables pertaining to disposal of locker material which I have shown. They don't corrlate with the story. Suggesting...

25. WTF   
Jul 13 2008 13:30

Let me clarify, after enquiring the some of the committee this year almost all expressed confusion because theta wasn?t in that building. Moreover, individuals were kind enough to provide me with a timetable of locker openings and disposal. The provisional black hole acquired theta a full two days before artefacts were taken and officially disposed. In fact unofficially what you will also find is no artefacts have been disposed of. Given that the pieces were not in the building one wonders about the nature of the acquisition. However, most of the old committee have bottom lined with the idea that the RCS have managed to capture their own mascot.

Jul 13 2008 13:42

That was a clarifying statement?

Now I'm more confused than ever!

Jul 13 2008 15:07

Well, Theta was definitely in the building on Wednesday afternoon, sitting with two black bags of rubbish.

Perhaps you should figure out where it was last time you saw it, and how it could have come to be in SAF, lying on the floor next to two black bags of rubbish.

Jul 13 2008 17:16

@WTF: Are you talking about Theta MkIV? I just heard on this thread that there is a Theta MkV (apparently). Ashley and I retreived two parts of Theta MkIV from the SAF.

Jul 13 2008 17:20

Are you sure it's not just the bulb from MkIII that's reared it's head?

I'm very sceptical of a MkV.

Jul 13 2008 17:30

No need to be sceptical about an MkV which is the MkIV's replacement parts.

Jul 13 2008 19:22

Hmm, this seems to be a broader problem - noone has any idea what's going on with the mascots. I was one of the people who helped recover Theta MkIV from Guilds when the RCSU was reforming - none of the new lot have a clue what's going on or even how to look after it.

If mascotry is going to be restarted (as people say every year but nothing happens) you need at least one person from each Union who can communicate with the others and knows where the mascot is. This never happens though. Hand it over to Archives and let them take care of it, I say.

Jul 13 2008 21:14

Good point but contacting the RSC exec would also help combat the situation.

Jul 13 2008 21:41

Has anyone ever known what's going on?

Jul 13 2008 22:04

Combat what situation? The incoming president doesn't know where it is, and apparently the person supposedly responsible for the mascot has been contacted. If they still maintain they have Theta, despite not knowing where it is and with proof its not in their possession, something bizarre is happening.

Oct 03 2008 09:28

Yes, in the old days there was always a focal point for mascotry who *did* know what was going on. His (for at that time few girls were involved) identity was kept a closely guarded secret....

36. Update   
Oct 03 2008 14:40

Theta IV has been returned and is now in the possession of the RCSU

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