New Study Shows Only 50,000 Distinct Faces Exist. A&M has 56,000 Students…

A recent study by the Psychology Department claims that there are only 50,000 truly distinct faces in the world. This means that many people have “virtually indistinguishable traits.” At a school the size of Texas A&M, that means that there are at least 6,000 people walking around that have no individual identity and have a visual double somewhere on campus.

The study looked at both small liberal arts colleges and large state universities finding that at the smaller schools there was a wide range of facial traits, while at the state schools, it was not uncommon to run up to a friend only to realize he or she was not your friend but a perfect approximation nearly indistinguishable by modern science.

Critics of the study point to the largest anomaly known in existence, the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets, because despite the odds, every single member has “virtually indistinguishable traits.” Psychologists have not been able to explain this, but do acknowledge that even they have mistaken a cadet in the study with another cadet, who was in fact mistaken for his roommate in the first place.

What some have rushed to call the “ambiguous feature effect” is nothing short of a doppelganger effect. In short, because of the size of our university, you are statistically likely to mistake someone for your friend, once or possibly even several times per day.

At small schools like Rice, you know who your friends are and can recognize people across campus, but at Texas A&M, the odds are stacked against you.

As the old adage goes, you don’t always know who your friends are.

-Commons Lobbyist

The Mugdown Comes Out

As the school year draws to a close, many members of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2015 are poised to graduate, including many of our very own staff. While they may graduate from Texas A&M University, they will never graduate from our hearts.

The Mugdown Comes Out Collage (updated)

Nine of our dearly beloved writers pass from this mortal realm into another equally mortal realm, from the world of The Mugdown to the world of reality. And as we bid them farewell from this organization, it is with a heavy heart for we know a crueler world awaits them. Time shall not be kind to them. No, time will not be kind to them. Yet they march forward. Onward. Unrelenting. Bravely facing the doom they know is at hand.

Andy Jett  (personal) (retouched)Andy Jett

Bravely and foolishly. I pity them really. They spend the last portion of their lives building this organization from scratch clawing and fighting to get where they are. Now, they are being unceremoniously dumped out into a world they cared little for and which cared even less about them.

Ben Gothman  (personal) (retouched)Benjamin Gothman

And their child, their darling creation they’ve nourished from birth with their own blood, sweat, and tears, is being ripped from its mother’s breast to have its fate determined by the whims of its newly adopted parents. Will they raise it as if it were their own or shall they cast it to the wolves, neglected and forgotten?

Courtney Welch  (retouched) (personal)Courtney Welch

If only they could divine the future, peer past the foggy veil of the present to catch a glimmer of their fate to come. But fate is not a mistress easily charmed.

Jamie Bennett  (personal) (retouched)James Bennett

Nay. But she waits for us all nevertheless. Ever we look to her dreaming of the captivating enchantress hidden just beyond our sight. Yet we chase her dreaming of the vision we held in our youth, and day by day she flits back ever beyond our reach.

Linley McCord  (personal) (retouched)Linley McCord

The chase seems eternal; time stretches farther than we ever thought possible. Then we find her. Fate, the radiant virgin we once sought so vigorously in the prime of our lives, has aged not like a vintage wine grown in a land we once knew in a dream but like goat’s milk curdled and soured from the neglect of the harsh elements that barrage the surface of a harsher world.

Lucas Williamson (personal) (retouched)Lucas Williamson

Yes. This is what the future has in store for our wide-eyed graduates. We do not envy them. No, there is not a word found amongst the tomes of English literature or half a dozen languages that can accurately describe the overwhelming pain it is to see them forsake the safety of this nest.

Ryan Vinzant  (personal) (retouched)Ryan Vinzant

The rocket of their lives has begun to launch. They aim for the moon for they know if they miss, they will land among the stars. But they clearly didn’t learn much in their time here at school, because any basic understanding of our own solar system will tell you that those that miss the moon do not land anywhere near a star, but instead come crashing down to Earth in a ball of fiery ruin.

Shelbi Polk  (personal) (retouched)Shelbi Polk

The poor souls. Their outlook is so bleak, I’ve run out of metaphors to describe it. In fact, I don’t expect many to actually read this far into this article. I mostly expect people to skim the first paragraph or too for context and spend the rest of the time checking the pictures and the names to see if they know any of these graduating clowns.

William French  (personal) (retouched)William French

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe someone is actually still reading this. That would be impressive. I don’t even think there is a single sentence in this article that forms half a rational thought. However, there may be someone out there who just has to read every word of this thing. Like some compulsion compels them forward. If that’s the case, here’s some actually straightforward and useful information to reward you, you weirdo.

Nine seniors are graduating from Texas A&M University and The Mugdown. Their names are Andy Jett, Benjamin Gothman, Courtney Welch, Jamie Bennett, Linley McCord, Luke Williamson, Ryan Vinzant, Shelbi Polk, and William French. They helped raise The Mugdown to what it is and now leave it in the hands of writers they hand picked and trained themselves. So it’ll probably do just fine. Probably.


The Mugdown

Why Liberal Arts is Super Dumb

Once upon a time, there were dumb people who did not want to be engineers. There people are Liberal Arts majors. Why do they want to be Liberal Arts? In my opinion it is because they do not understand why engineers are so great, and now I will tell you why. Because I am an engineer and I know that I am right and here is why that is.

My first point is that engineers do much good in the world. We build bridges and houses and schools and medicines and everything else is the whole wide world. While we do all of the good things, liberal arts majors do not do any of the good things. All they do I read and write and that is all. I think that all of that is super pointless. There has never been anything good that came from books. Uncle Tom’s Cabin did not make people say that slavery is dumb. Even books that people say are classical are mega dumb. Why do I need to read The Lord of the Rings when I can watch the movie? The movie is better anyway. I think that the second Lord of the Rings movie is the best one.

Some of the things that liberal arts does is not real. What I mean when I say that some of the things that liberal arts do is not real is that sometimes it is theoretical. This is dumber than anything that can be done in a different college. All of the math and formulas that we do is always based on things in the real world. It is never made up. Never. It is always real.

The world is super simple, not like formulas and math. Majors like history and political science and international studies do not make a difference not even a little one. The people that are in Washington make all of the laws anyway, I don’t think that understanding how the system works make it go good. I trust the people who live in a place that almost won two Super Bowels in a row. And I do not need to know all of the stuff that happened a billion years ago. That is what Google is for. A engineer probably made Google, so history is less then engineering.

Lastly, I want to convince the people that are reading this that even an engineer can do what liberal arts does, except that I can do it more good. Writing is not hard, and even though people in the real world do not need to use it ever, engineers could still do it super good. In conclusion, liberal arts is a pointless thing. If an engineer was to try to write something and sound all of the kinds of professional, I can.

The End

-Beutal Call

BCA and Phi Lamb Team Up for Noah’s Ark Chilifest Build

In an effort to reach out to the Greek community, the Brotherhood of Christian Aggies (BCA), a Christian organization dedicated to fellowship and brotherhood, and Sigma Phi Lambda, a Christian sorority, decided to partner together to create a Chilifest team. Due to the organizations’ size, they were immediately recognized as the largest team in Chilifest’s history. They were also the most sober. Their team entered under a Noah’s Ark theme in a rather unsubtle attempt to warn Greeks of their impending damnation.

Sigma Phi Lambda, or Phi Lamb, decided to dress as the animals aboard the ark. The decision was easy, as most members still had leftover animal costumes from last semester’s Noah’s Ark themed date party.

BCA members were all dressed as Noah.

While many biblical scholars believe that Noah’s Ark was built in around fifty years, BCA and Phi Lamb’s ark was built over four weekends. The plywood ark housed several prayer teams that prayed for God’s forgiveness over the event for 48 hours straight.

“We wanted to be in the world, but not of the world,” said Justin Woodall, BCA president. “This seemed like a natural way to reach out to the Greek community. Plus, I think Josh Abbott might be a Christian, even if he does curse.”

BCA members took turns standing on kegs (not to be confused with keg stands) and holding signs calling Chilifest participants to repent of their drunkenness and debauchery. While some believed this might be offensive or, at the least, unconventional, the Christian fraternity believed that it would be more offensive to not share the truth about God’s hatred of sin.

“God promised He would never wipe out the entire world in a flood again, but on Saturday, Snook was basically flooded with a wave of sweat, beer, and urine,” said Phi Lamb Chaplain Carly McDougal.

The team recruited saying it was open to whomever wanted to join. All that the groups asked was that no one drank while wearing an animal costume, Noah costume, or their letters. They then gave participants a kind reminder that worship would be performed following Eli Young Band.

The deal was seen as exceptionally good this year. For only $75 dollars, you got a two day Chilifest and BCA/Phi Lamb tent wristband, a comfort colors t-shirt, and a chance to avoid eternity in Hell.

-Cactus Jack



In Defense of Satire at A&M: Or a Perspective on Propaganda

In Defense of Satire at A&M:
Or a Perspective on Propaganda


The Mugdown exists to challenge the thinking of the Texas A&M community by delivering relevant satirical news.” —The Mugdown Mission Statement

We are both immensely proud and humbled by what we have created. We believe we have faithfully carried out our mission statement: exposing a reality at A&M which no one has been brave enough (or perhaps stupid enough) to release into the public sphere of dialogue.

Late Wednesday night, we carried out a project that has been in development for months—a collection of posters portraying propaganda for the Corps of Cadets which were arranged throughout campus. Hours went into crafting the images, deciding which pieces were fit to print and would best advance the intended message, and which order would maximize the message value.

This is not an apology.

We absolutely stand by what we have unleashed, and we fully believe that any subsequent offense has resulted from either a misunderstanding of the heart of the message or a willful ignorance to the unpleasant reality it presents.

Every article we write and every stunt we orchestrate is for the singular purpose of satire, which we have made clear in our mission statement above. The essence of satire is truth, or what we like to call, the heart of the message. This heart reflects reality and is found deeper than the instinctive reaction. There is strong correlation between the truth of the message and the response that the message garners. This idea has been indisputably witnessed with Thursday’s stunt and subsequent reaction.

The heart of this collection is in exposing a tension at the core of Texas A&M culture, namely, the implicit rivalry between the Corps of Cadets and the non-reg student body. We have witnessed firsthand this conflict during our time here at A&M, with such occurrences as the flag event at the Greek Bid Day a few years ago and the recent scandal involving the yell leader elections.

The purpose of this message was to present this reality to the public sphere of discussion. We hoped this would encourage open and free dialogue, and ultimately put this division to rest and bring the Aggie family closer together.

We believe we presented this reality in its most extreme form through the use of propaganda—which by its very nature is extreme. Our hope was that its satirical nature would be immediately obvious by those of the Texas A&M community. Unfortunately, this message has been mostly lost by those who have misinterpreted the intent and attributed malice to The Mugdown staff or others. Some have even gone as far as to say that we are not deserving of membership in the Aggie family.

Are we not Aggies for bringing to light a truth that others are unable or unwilling to admit? Are we not Aggies for promoting discussion on what we believe to be a very real and very troubling aspect of Texas A&M culture? Are we not Aggies because we desire a truly unified campus and not simply its illusion?

The posters were all designed to communicate various aspects of the same message, and were intended to be taken as a whole—which is why we placed them in close proximity to one another. Unfortunately, much of the substance of the message is lost when the pieces are taken individually, and this undoubtedly led to the misconceptions which have arisen in their wake.

Specifically, the poster that received the most backlash is the piece depicting Steven Lanz in opposition with the other yell leaders. This is intentionally the least subtle of the collection and is reasonably unsettling when taken out of context.

This past election was one of the most controversial events to hit our campus in a long time, and it hit a huge nerve in corps and non-reg communities alike. The mentality expressed in the poster, that Lanz is representative of an enemy that has infiltrated the sacred ranks of Yell Leader, is one that we truly believe exists in some circles—and is in direct opposition with the Aggie spirit. We believe that this poster hits so hard because of the truth it exposes, and bringing that truth out of the shadows is paramount to healing and growth in the Aggie community.

Is the reality depicted in the poster “bad bull?” Absolutely. Is the subtle tension between the corps and non-reg students a real and tangible part of the Texas A&M community? Without question. Does that make this piece of satire or its creators responsible for the truth it exposes, as uncomfortable as it may be? Absolutely not. If you were offended, if you were outraged, if you were appalled, upset, called for our expulsion, or went to your keyboards to demand justice, then it was because of the reality that these posters addressed—not the posters themselves.

This week, we held a mirror to the face of Aggieland and reflected a problem that we have shown to exist. The Corps is not the enemy. Greek life is not the enemy. Steven Lanz is not the enemy. And we at The Mugdown are certainly not the enemy. However, the enemy is indeed among us—among us and within us—and as long as we suppress public discourse and allow anti-Aggie sentiments to perpetuate, the enemy will continue to tear our family apart.

Thanks and Gig ‘Em,

The Mugdown

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Best Friends Accidentally Walk under Century Tree Together, Now Gay

In a strange twist of fate, two Texas A&M students became gay today after walking, and then eventually prancing, under the century tree together. The students, Marcus Gladden and Tanner Elliott, have been friends since high school, and they say the event was an accident.

“We were pretty late to a fish camp counselor meeting, so we were just hurrying and not really paying attention to where we were going,” Elliott explained. “By the time we realized what had happened, it was too late. We went into the tree with an appropriate 18 inches of buffer space between us, but we came out holding hands.”

“This isn’t exactly the way I saw my romantic life ending up. Marcus is a great guy, but he’s just never really been my type,” Gladden said, “But what are you going to do? We have these rules for a reason and we have to respect that.”

The two friends were already planning to get an apartment together next semester and are now even more excited to do so. However, they maintain that they are both just hapless pawns in the unforgiving chess game of Aggie traditions. Gladden said he’s just happy they didn’t accidentally step on the MSC grass and have to commit seppuku.

Elliott said he is planning on breaking the news to his parents later this week but that he is confident they’ll take it well, as he comes from a very traditional aggie family with a deep respect for Texas A&M’s culture.

“My parents always raised me to be a red-ass, and I know they’ll understand when I explain that this red-ass will now be squeezing into much tighter pants,” Elliott said, but he went on to admit that he is scared to tell his now ex-girlfriend about her new title.

When asked how their new sexual identities will affect their lives in the future, Elliott revealed that he is now planning on picking up a theatre minor. Additionally, Gladden said he will continue to work out at the Rec in tight tank tops.


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