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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

UMass Boston professor proposes to student mid-lecture

Bianca Oppedisano
Bobby the Beacon officiates a wedding between student Persephone Thorneside and her professor. Illustration by Bianca Oppedisano / Mass Media Staff

Recently, there’s been a new controversy sparking discourse around the nation. It’s technically legal, unquestionably gross and a nightmare in the making for Human Resources: A UMass Boston professor finally mustered up the courage to pop the question. This, in itself, isn’t a problem; the problem lies in the fact that he proposed to a student in his class. And if you thought it couldn’t get any worse, she said yes.  

Before you ask, no, she isn’t an older student, and no, he isn’t a younger professor. She turns 19 in December, and he just celebrated his 63rd birthday this past July. Many have taken issue with the relationship claiming that it constitutes sexual coercion, while others have brought up concerns about the couple’s massive age gap. However, bride-to-be, Persephone Thornside, insists that her decision to accept the professor’s proposal was purely strategic. 

“I need to pass this guy’s class to graduate, and I was failing miserably,” spoke Thornside. “Then one day, during the middle of a lecture about the Piper Alpha oil rig disaster of 1988, all these white doves start flying out from under his desk. Next thing I know, he’s down on one knee and all my academic problems are solved.” 

It’s Thornside’s hope that by marrying her professor, he’ll give her a better grade in the class. Her motives seem to be purely academic; however, the professor insists that he’s finally found true love. The professor in question, one Mr. Alan Lovebucket, has been teaching about gas and oil at UMass Boston for the past twenty-something-odd years, and believes that the public has been unfairly cruel to him and his new fiancé. Lovebucket expressed his frustrations in a passionate statement:  

“Look, I’ll be the first to admit it. I have a nasty habit of falling for my students, but since when was a consensual relationship between a nice girl and a nice boy a crime? I love her, and she loves me. Isn’t that all that matters? Isn’t that what Barney the Purple Dinosaur spent his whole life preaching about? I’ve probably been teaching since before you were even born, and you think I should resign just because, what, I fell in love? Well, sorry, but this ain’t my first rodeo, kids. Hell, I used to teach high school! Does experience mean nothing to you people?”

The fact that Lovebucket describes himself as a “nice boy” is perhaps a little bit strange, but regardless of this, he’s a tenured professor which makes him practically untouchable. The University even seemed to show him support by allowing the wedding ceremony to be held on the front quad and providing the school mascot, Bobby Beaconwho happens to be a freelance wedding planner on the sideto oversee and even officiate the event. The wedding was held this past Sunday, and unsurprisingly, things didn’t exactly go as planned.  

Things started decently enough with elegant flower arrangements, a five-layer, white marble cake and a generous amount of heavy makeup to help the groom appear younger. Bobby pulled out all the stops to ensure that this special, once-in-a-lifetime day—Lovebucket’s fourth, by the way—was perfect. Not before long, vows were exchanged, rings were traded and the couple pecked each other awkwardly on the lips, sealing the deal. It was during the reception that things started to go awry. The newlywed couple decided, for whatever reason, to partake in the age-old tradition of shoving cake in each other’s faces. However, when Thornside did this to her newly-hailed hubby, something unexpected happened: His face started to melt off.  

Erupting into frantic screeches, the professor’s flesh broke out into hideous boils before large chunks of his face began to literally fall away. It should go without saying that this really spoiled the mood of the party. Thornside watched on as the man she had just committed the rest of her life to exhaled his final breath. Lovebucket collapsed to the floor, the red stain of his evaporated blood encircling his charred skull like a demonic halo. As I stood with Thornside, too shocked and horrified to move, Bobby came up from behind and put his arms around us, saying jokingly, “Till death do ya part, eh?” 

Now a teenage widow, Thornside got her wish and received full credit for Lovebucket’s class. What’s more, feeling guilty for the man’s grotesque demise, Thornside has vowed to honor her late husband’s legacy by declaring herself an oil and gas major with the ambition of one day teaching the subject just as he did. Hopefully, she doesn’t inherit her husband’s knack for preying on students, but only time will tell. 

As for the mysterious circumstances surrounding Lovebucket’s death, a recent examination of evidence discovered that trace amounts of hydrogen compounds in the cake may have reacted with chemicals in Lovebucket’s makeup to form a super-acid. While the University is hesitant to point fingers, it’s safe to say that Bobby Beacon’s days as a wedding planner are over. When reached for comment, Bobby responded cryptically saying:

“I don’t know nothing about nothing, but all I’m saying is, the dude was a creep. A word of advice for students out there: Whether you like it or not, Bobby’s got your back.”

About the Contributors
Joe DiPersio, Humor Editor
Bianca Oppedisano, Illustrator