The previous two posts were technically before my smikha days. My first year in smikha was also one of the more auspicious years in YU’s PR history. It started when YU removed stacks of the Commentator from Belfer Hall right before the annual open house. An embarrassed YU eventually compensated the Commie for the papers, but the fun didn’t stop there.
The story hit the mainstream press with YU being the evil supressor of free speach. The New York Times reported the story, and coincidentally was itself removed from campus. R. Lamm was even disqualified from US News’ ignominious Sheldon Award because “administrators are supposed to look the other way, not conduct the thefts themselves.” Of course, YU couldn’t do much about US News since they rely on them too much for their annual college rankings.
Censorship extented to Judaic Studies as well. Some of YU’s Roshei Yeshiva criticized the new Bible journal Nachalah and several copies also turned up “missing” after the SOY Sefarim Sale (it turned out that the Nachalah staff was to blame – since no one came to pick up the unsold issues, facilities management removed them.) Finally, the integrity of SOY’s prized publication “Beis Yitzhack” was compromised when two students dared to not only quote R. Saul Lieberman, but they actually treated him with respect.
With all this happening, we couldn’t just let this go by. I never attempted a fake gemara before, but this was too good to pass up. Ben came by my aparment and we created Masechet Bava Commie. While many fake gemaras just tell a story as it might appear in the Talmud, we quoted and paraphrased actual gemaras, rashis, and tosafot, weaving the shtick with actual sources to the point where we should have included mekorot with the Purim issue.