Welcome to The Muggies presented by The Mugdown Writers Guild. This is the first awards article meant to honor our best pieces of the year. After taking a look at everything The Mugdown has published in 2017, our writers voted on which pieces they liked best across a variety of categories.
Like any actual awards show, we started with minor categories like “Hottest Take,” and “Best Reader Comments.” Then we worked our way towards important categories, such as “Best SGA Article” and “Best Uncoventionally Formatted Article.”
Now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for…
Best Battalion Burn
It’s not hard to sense the tension between The Mugdown and The Battalion. This rivalry goes back almost four years, and, like the t.u. vs A&M clash, will likely never end. Over the years, we have certainly published a lot of crap to garner likes. There is one example that stands out…However, it appears we are not alone. This year our friends at The Battalion made some similar mistakes, and it quickly inspired our Batt burn of the year.
Best Christian Bubble Piece
There was no contest here. Though the Christian Bubble is perhaps A&M best known (and easiest to mock) clique on campus, this thorough breakdown of the tensions between Catholics and Protestants neatly and accurately explained a rarely reported on phenomenon.
Every year, we present controversial, satirical perspectives on the hottest issues on campus. One of these hot topics is the recent construction of a hotel on campus. The general consensus of our student body is a resounding “No!” including a passionate hiss from the student section during one of our last home games of the season. Yet, there are some major pros that we aren’t discussing. More revenues means less income required from student fees, and A&M is one of many schools with first class hotels on campus.
Best Reader Comments
Our audience is notorious for its sophisticated taste and appreciation for satire. Yet, every once in a while, we have a reader who just doesn’t “get it.” This is especially true of one of our edgier articles.
Here are some highlights:
… and we normally like The Mugdown.
Best Transportation Piece
During Mugdown Transportation Week, in which we provided a must needed vehicle for protest on the crumbling infrastructure of our wonderful little Texas town, a lot of interesting think-pieces were presented.
This article was a unique insight into the insane traffic management inabilities of Texas A&M. Yet, it didn’t fully incorporate the experience of dealing with transportation on A&M’s campus. One article did.
Best Social Organization Piece
After the rise of #MeToo and fall of so many in Hollywood, issues related to society’s treatment of women have attained even more relevance. “Women Go to Northgate, Excited for Night of Being Disrespected” uniquely highlights the predicament many young women feel on campus. In addition, women’s organizations deserve some scrutiny for their inability to create truly diverse communities. Yet, the winner of this award goes above and beyond criticizing the bar scene or women’s organizations. It targets a fundamental issue in society we need to improve on: the way men interact with women, especially on college campuses.
Best Administration Piece
Well, this one wasn’t easy. Given the perplexity of so many decisions, a profound diversity of campus controversies, and an almost deliberately silent leadership (except the occasional mass email), countless Mugdown articles have gone after our administrators. We will never be able to count finding a job as a valid reason for missing class or be able to have a football program without controversy. However, we will need to change our attitude towards student health resources. Simply put, the move to White Creek was tough on students, and A&M needs to understand the implications of their decision. Our winner hit the nail on the head.
Best Student Life Piece
We divided this category into to two loosely-defined, imperfect categories: Academic and Social.
Academic Runners Up:
Our nominees this year managed to hit on life experiences that are truly relatable. This senior is certainly upset that freshmen are no longer subjected to Commons pasta. And we’ve all gotten into a passive aggressive battle over an unofficial seating chart in classes. “Reckless Moron” inspired countless spinoffs and presented a point of view that felt vaguely refreshing to hear out loud. But realistically, there is one statement that stands truer than all the rest.
Social Runners Up:
In many ways, the most interesting offshoot of our ring by spring culture is fetishizing Zips in the Corps. Though, there are a lot of nights that can’t be spent simply chasing Corps boys. And sometimes we find ourselves in the saddest and loneliest states of our lives, like leaving food in the microwave while drooling all over the remote. While it’s absolutely true that apathy towards events is a real problem on A&M’s campus, there is an even bigger epidemic of parents trying to buddy up with their newly legal children. To really capture the heart of our university’s social experience, our winner wrote a piece that spoke to us all.
Best Student Government Piece
Have you ever seen Shark Week? During this most recent Student Body President Election, attending Texas A&M felt kind of like that. The events just kept coming: a last second disqualification of the winner, our own outrageous disqualification, an op-ed written by White House leadership, and then a borderline offensive lawsuit. And then, silence. All fall, the only real controversy is about a statue of a man of color and despite a few unfortunate comments on the subject, nothing really generated the buzz we’ve come to expect.
Our nominees generally focus on the frenzy during the spring. These articles range from discussing the fallout of our election cycle to an alarmingly accurate comparison to international conflict. They also included an underloved extension of some of the mundane Student Senate debates.
But alas, there can only be one winner. Which is why our response to an op-ed about our SBP election written by Rick Perry, Secretary of Energy and member of the Cabinet of the President of the United States (while he was serving!), is deserving of our “Best SGA Piece of the Year.”
Best Unconventionally Formatted Piece
Here at The Mugdown, we specialize in delivering salient satirical news to your doorstep. This typically takes the form of AP-style news updates, which allow us to live up to the standards of our journalistic forefathers. From time to time, however, we stray away from our traditional article formats, and bring you journalism from a variety of perspectives.
Our nominees reference all aspects of student life, from our administration’s approach to handling controversy to top tips for social media engagement. We also compared an A&M tradition to Christmas via a rather polite complaint to our editor. In addition, some of our newest writers infiltrated the most intimate depths of campus life, from illuminating pieces on Corps hazing to exploitation of innocent social organizations during Songfest.
But our champion this year isn’t just a champion in the figurative sense. It quite literally won 6 positions in our Student Government. Yes folks, our most creative and influential piece of the year wasn’t an article at all: it was a political campaign.
Thank you for joining us for this year’s Muggies. We’re excited to see you in the 2018 Spring semester!