Friday, January 10, 2014

The Society's influence remains rampant after 50 years

The Society's influence remains rampant after 50 years

By Konomi Fujimiya
The Daily Magi
September 28, 2061

Organizations come and organizations go. The Connect Crew merged with the Roseluck Arrow Boosters after 15 years, while Young Turks and Big Shots were swallowed up by the Men About Town after 20 years. But despite all the consolidations and spinoffs that came, one organization remained constant and only went through a name change: The Society.

That is their name. The Society. They are the official undergraduate secret society that is entrusted with maintaining the traditions and history of Mitakihara University. When they were established during the 2011-12 academic year, they were known as the Homuhomu Society, and were under the patronage of Homura Akemi, the university chancellor that is due to retire from the university this year. 

Dr. Akemi tried to establish an academic honor society independent of the society but after six years, it was disbanded due to lack of interest. Following the failure, she resumed being the patron and advisor to the Society.

Mona Lisa Azadi, an immigrant from Tehran and a criminal justice major, is a member of the Class of 2015 and one of the first groups of graduates that were members of the Society. She has practiced law for about 40 years as an attorney in Langley before retiring.

"The Society is technically owned and operated by the MadokASI but de facto-wise, it is fully autonomous," Azadi said via phone interview. "Their job is to archive the history of the University and maintain and record the traditions that are observed, from Felix Vera to Homecoming to Commencement to defunct events like the Battle of the Bands and the inaguration of facilities like the Kirisame Pyramid and Hakurei Centre. They are at functions and other ceremonies that require their presence. Membership, since 2016, has been open to only third-year students and their role lasts throughout their final year at Madoka.

"When you are a part of the Society, you are among the most respected of students at the university. While any third-year student is eligible to be tapped in their spring semester, current members of the society choose their successors at their own discretion, subject to consensus approval. Many high-achieving men and women are picked to be a part of the Society. Even perfect grades for the first five semesters combined with extensive service will not guarantee that you will be tapped. Again, it's at the discretion of the outgoing members of the order.

"Each batch of members consists of five men and 10 women. The men wear special black suits and ties with a lapel pin in the shape of our logo, which is the spider lily. Female members, however, wear a special outfit that was designed by Dr. Akemi when the organization was in its infancy. It's a black petticoat with white trim and a black bowtie, with black hairband and white sheet to be worn over like an oversized veil. It's university-issued and specially created by a select team of hand-picked tailors and seamstresses in our city. What makes it unique is that there is no leggings or shoes in this uniform. Essentially, female members of the Society are seen walking barefoot and only go out in tennis shoes with no socks if the walking surface is treacherous beyond reasonable doubt.

"The women are able to keep their Society uniforms for life and can have it altered at no cost with proper identification. For male members to keep their suits, they must pay a weighted fee based on their GPA. The minimum is $50; the maximum is $100. Once the fee is paid, the suits can also be altered and changed in any way or form needed, as with the female uniforms.

"Like Yale's Skull and Bones, we also have a private estate for retreats called the Spider Lily Country Club. It's located three kilometers outside of Tofino in privately-owned land and cannot be accessed without reservation or proof of Society membership. We like to call it the HomuHome, and this includes an 18-hole championship golf course, private surfing beach and an estate that is tended by local resident housemaids dressed in French maid outfits who are sworn to secrecy. Every summer, incoming, outgoing, and alumni members of the Society as well as the designated patron gather for a two-week retreat designed to break in the new members of the order.

"All in all, we have never had a single tapped student reject an invitation to join the Society. It is an honor that is invaluable and makes for the best centerpiece of a student's experience as part of the Mitakihara Family."

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