Fact Check

Fraternity Donut Revenge

Did an angry fraternity exact revenge on its enemies via an adulterated peace offering?

Published Sept. 20, 1998

Colourful doughnuts, studio shot. (Getty Images/Stock photo)
Colourful doughnuts, studio shot. (Image courtesy of Getty Images/Stock photo)
An angry fraternity exacted revenge on its enemies with an adulterated peace offering.


Example:   [Collected on the Internet, 1996]

A sorority house and a fraternity house were situated side-by-side on a college campus. The frat held a party one night, and there was much drinking, rude behavior, shouted obscenities, etc., much of which was directed at the sorority house. The women were highly irritated, and to help smooth things over the next morning the fraternity sent over several boxes of doughnuts with their deepest apologies. The sorority members, still annoyed, accepted the peace offering and ate their free breakfast.

All was fine until one of the sisters, at the next frat party, noticed the photo(s) pinned to the bulletin board inside the frat house — the brothers were wearing the doughnuts on the erect portions of their anatomy.


    • The identity of the object of the revenge changes telling to telling —
      "uppity" sorority sisters who wouldn't give the lads the time of day, a sorority who complained about the fraternity's behavior, a group of professors (for whom the donuts are left in a staff room), or a basketball team that had humiliated the frat lads on the court.
    • In one especially disgusting version, the photos show the fraternity brothers masturbating into what had previously been thought to be tasty cream-filled donuts.

Origins:   This tale of schoolboy revenge dates to at least the mid-1980s, when it was told of a number of different fraternities at various colleges. Though it's a common enough tale and is widely believed, no one has yet provided confirmation of the event. (Especially as photographs feature prominently in this tale, such documentation shouldn't be all that difficult to produce if this were a true story. As in the case of the Toothbrush Bandits, one is left wondering where the photos have gone to and why no one has ever been able to produce them.)

(According to an article on the Surfer magazine website, the staff of Surfing magazine played a similar prank on their fellow magazine employees in December 1997. Donuts left for, and devoured by, Surfer's staff had previously been held up to the bare butts of Surfing staff members.)

The "ewww!" factor here comes from the victims' discovering where their donuts have been only after they've been consumed. Eating something that's been draped upon someone's penis is seen as only one step removed from having had oral sex with that person, and that's a level of intimacy one does not wish to reach with a mere acquaintance.

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