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Pranksters' robo-call delays M-A's opening

Original post made on May 29, 2009

Families in the Menlo-Atherton High School community received an early morning automated call on Friday, May 29, saying that the electricity at the school had been cut off and that classes were canceled.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, May 29, 2009, 6:05 PM

Comments (31)

Posted by MA Student, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on May 29, 2009 at 6:46 pm

This is a great article, well written. This was the funniest senior prank I have ever seen go down. The administration pretty much got what some would call "mind-screwed". Good job class of 2009!

Posted by Nobody, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on May 29, 2009 at 7:22 pm

Most of the senior pranks that have happened have been cleaned up by the time first period starts, but this time there was nothing to clean up. Student power triumphs over adults!

Posted by M-A mom, a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on May 29, 2009 at 8:10 pm

We received the prank call at 6:30 am, but not a later call from the administration as stated above. We've received past recorded messages, so I don't know why we didn't get the legitimate message today. It sort of worries me that it was so hard to find out the true story even up to an hour after the prank. What if there had been a true emergency? I kept calling the school and checking the website until 7:30, but the prank wasn't addressed on the website, or on any of the administration's voicemail greetings.

Posted by an adult, a resident of another community
on May 29, 2009 at 10:53 pm

That was a great article. Great prank.

When I participated in a senior prank, I got permission from my parents to go and do it, since it was late at night. A photo of it made it into the school newspaper. Though I don't think of it often, I do think of it fondly.

Posted by Felony, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on May 30, 2009 at 12:35 am

Am I the only one who sees the problem here? Sacramento is under countless billions in debt, how much did these shenanigans cost the school district? I would throw the book at these kids, if they are ever discovered. 6 months with 500 hours community service sounds about right to me.

Posted by Justified, a resident of Oak Knoll School
on May 30, 2009 at 1:21 am

The kids who did this did this in part to be funny, but also to let the administration know that they overstepped their boundaries during the basketball season. With the best 6th man in the state, school administrators refused to sponsor or support the club. It became a tug of war.
The students meant no harm to any individual, just consider it a message that they want more respect from administration, campus aides, etc.
Ain't no party like an M-A party.

Posted by Felony, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on May 30, 2009 at 10:59 am

Just to make it clear, my last post was facetious. Great Prank!

Posted by Sequoia Union HSD Emplyee, a resident of another community
on May 30, 2009 at 11:15 am

When this news came into the district office on Friday morning, it was apparent that the students at Menlo-Atherton, or at least one student, had pulled off one of the most memorable pranks in recent history in the area.

The administrators have no choice but to come down on them, but if they have to forfeit their ability to walk at graduation on Thursday, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be an uprising.

Great prank, television should do a special on this person.

Posted by High school senior at another school, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 30, 2009 at 1:15 pm

All I can say is wow!!!!! The brilliance of this prank is beyond incredible and I wish something like this could have happened at my school. I have been lucky to know seniors at MA, and I think the class of 2009 represents what a senior class should be. The spirit at that school is absolutely incredible and I am very regretful I didn't go there. If these students get discovered and are punished for this brilliance, then the administration will be not only wrongful in doing so, but will be sending out a message that intuition, creativity and spirit are not tolerated.

Also, someone should submit the prank to MTV!

Posted by MA junior student, a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on May 30, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Menlo-Atherton is not part of the ADA (Average Daily Attendance) funding program, so the school in fact did not lose money from the government due to this prank. I'm not sure if the pranksters were aware of this, but it is an added bonus to they genius of the prank. Only telling the students not to go to 1st and 2nd period was a great idea, also.

Most of my teachers thought the prank was funny and harmless; though one in particular was furious. However, in that one class, we didn't really do anything (as we are done with the AP and it is the end of the year), so that was a bit strange to me...

Posted by MA senior, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on May 30, 2009 at 2:53 pm

This was an awesome prank. Walking into class first period to find NO ONE around was awesome. Very well done. If someone is not allowed to walk at graduation. I guarantee there will be an uprising and I am not afraid to lead it. This also isn't nearly as illegal as stealing of a golf cart and putting it on the roof of MA or the stealing of menlo's deer. And finally, I went in to the front office on the morning of the prank and all the staff in there at the time thought the prank was the funniest thing ever. Way to go seniors!


Posted by MA SENIOR!, a resident of Atherton: other
on May 30, 2009 at 3:31 pm

When I got the call yesterday morning I knew it was a prank but I had underclassmen asking me what was going on. The fact that they used their own money to charge the phone calls and a website to use the caller ID made it harmless and funny. Whoever did this is a pure genius and just as it was stated before, there will definitely bean uprise.

Good Job '09!

Posted by laughing, a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on May 31, 2009 at 11:47 am

ONLY the atherton police would even CONSIDER submitting this to the DA for is abundantly clear that they have nothing better to do. I am quite sure the district attorney of San Mateo County has more pressing issues to deal with.

Posted by MA freshman, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on May 31, 2009 at 5:06 pm

this prank was amazing and so funny!!!
We never got the second call either
and hey even though I found out it was a prank around 7:3 from my neighbor who is a senior, I stayed until 2nd period because any excuse to show up late is good for me
good job seniors!!!

Posted by East Bay school Administrator, a resident of another community
on May 31, 2009 at 5:13 pm

We heard about this prank at about 6PM Friday afternoon. We discovered that the prank had not actually broken any laws or violated any education code. This instantly turned from a no-no prank to an act of genius and intuition. Great prank, Nobel Peace Prize for disturbing the peace?

Posted by M-A Alumni 2008, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on May 31, 2009 at 8:51 pm

Props to Class of 2009. I don't even recall a senior prank for my class.

Posted by M-A Class of 2009, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on May 31, 2009 at 9:13 pm

You clearly don't recall a Menlo School golfcart on the roof of the Green. It was down by the end of 1st period, but it was certainly a feat to get it up there.

Posted by MA junior, a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Jun 1, 2009 at 4:11 pm

HAHA This was the greatest prank ever, i found out it was a prank before school started but i just chilled at home cause i didnt wanna go haha. If the administration doesnt let whoever did it walk at graduation M-A will face the largest student uprising in the history of the universe


watch out for the basketball team/6th man next year.....

Posted by Bastante Basta, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 1, 2009 at 5:31 pm

You successfully pulled off a prank. Kudos! But the self-congratulation is a bit much, don't you think?
It's not like y'all cured cancer or brokered peace in the Middle East. You got a couple of hours off of school. Big whoop.

Posted by MA Senior, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 3, 2009 at 1:26 pm

to Bastante: We did accomplish to pull off what is now being dubbed the "Greatest prank ever" by newspapers such as the Pasadena Sun and the New York Daily--- but keep posting your criticism, the greatest don't please everyone.

Posted by Bastante Basta, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 3, 2009 at 2:23 pm

Really? The greatest prank EVER?
MA Senior, please post links to those newspaper stories.

Posted by MA Senior, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 6, 2009 at 1:30 am

Are you just angry at yourself for not thinking of this great prank? Just google: "menlo atherton senior prank" and you will get hundreds of links to different twitter pages, blogs, columns, and articles in regard to the prank. Bastante needs to realize it's only a senior prank, but is being praised because of the gentleness applied as opposed to the ridiculously catastrophic alternatives [they] could have gone with such as calling every phone number in the Tri-City Area Phonebook and telling them that the bay area is being quarantined and no one should leave their houses...or maybe just vandalizing walls and windows and pouring glue into door-locks is more your physical damaging style? Mind over muscle, and obviously MA has a dark future with you at the school.

Posted by MA graduate, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 15, 2009 at 12:53 am

Web Link

Name of review: "MA Seniors Pull Off BEST high tech senior prank"

just a little more in favor of the MA seniors that had the brains not hate to do this prank...go MA!

Posted by Bastante Basta, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 15, 2009 at 11:59 am

There is no such newspaper as the "Pasadena Sun." The local paper there is the Pasadena Star-News, and they didn't print a thing about your little prank. Neither did the New York Daily News.

Self-titled tweets or blogs calling your prank THE BEST EVER don't actually count.

Posted by Joe, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jun 15, 2009 at 2:19 pm

I wonder if Don Quixote considered any of his exploits to be the best ever and whether he cited various fictional publications to justify his pride and whether a Bastante Basta was around to rain on his parade.

Posted by MA Senior, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 17, 2009 at 9:35 am

Honestly bastante? These are all papers who's websites are owned by the same company the san jose mercury news is owned by, along with the san mateo daily journal, this is why there are the same articles published multiple times in mulitple papers. These are not self proclaimed. I apologize for even posting to say that it was called the best prank ever. too bad people are actually saying that. bastante please just be happy for the kids at menlo-atherton and grow up a little bit. again, be HAPPY for someone ELSE

Posted by Bastante Basta, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 17, 2009 at 9:53 am

@MA Senior: Bay Area Newsgroup owns the San Jose Mercury News, the San Mateo County Times, the Daily News, the Contra Costa Times and the Oakland Tribune, but not the San Mateo Journal. I'm aware of the complicated local media landscape, but that still isn't a reason to make up newspapers.

Also, the word you want is whose, not "who's."

Look, I'm happy for y'all that you managed to execute a prank that was so satisfying and did not endanger life and limb.

I'm just saying that it would have been a heck of a lot cooler without all the overblown bragging and self-congratulation.

Posted by MA Senior, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 22, 2009 at 10:43 am

No bragging here bastante, just proud of our class' prank. Correcting grammar shows frustration, just so you know. :)

Posted by Bastante Basta, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Jun 22, 2009 at 11:09 am

Yes, bad grammar is extremely frustrating.

Posted by MA Grad (formerly MA Senior), a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Feb 15, 2010 at 11:57 pm

Still unsolved? Come on now, there must be a single lead in the investigation...NOT GONNA HAPPEN!

Posted by Anonymous, Inc., a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Jul 13, 2011 at 1:49 pm

In this statement, Anonymous, Inc would like to consort this prank as a joint effort in credit being given to the individual who is now associated with Anonymous, Inc. This has been hereby claimed. Check website for confirmation

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