Kappas Have Sixth “Bikini” Sense

Evelyn Levine

Illustration by Katie Emory
Illustration by Katie Emory

It’s the first sunny day of spring, about 75 degrees, a little after four in the afternoon, and Ankney is populated. There is soccer, ultimate, slack-lining, an abundance of guitars and  lines of Kappas in bikinis on towels. The Prentiss lawn is crowded, too. They were the first ones out. There are already pictures on Instagram.

Kappas are more dependable than Punxsutawney Phil at predicting spring and favorable weather. While Phil sports a measly 39 percent accuracy rate, Kappas hold an accuracy rate upwards of 85 percent. Does it all come with that special key? I had to know. I worried I might uncover a sorority secret, or simply offend Kappas with my kooky theory comparing them to rodents.

But, the correlation was too strong to ignore, and I proceeded to interview Kappas about their ability. “I get up in the morning and just know to grab my bikini so I can wear it later,” said Kappa sophomore Lorraine Plotlady. Is weather prediction an innate ability where Kappas “just” know? Did they learn it, is it a requirement, or is it all a hoax or a coincidence? Besides Plotlady, many other Kappas say they just get “the tingling to tan.” I inquired about what happens with waking up before sunrise, and some Kappas say they are still capable of feeling “it” before sunrise.

First-year Camille Tabasko believes she developed the sense: “Everything clicked when I initiated; my sensitivity towards weather increased dramatically,” said Tabasko. Other Kappas want to be sure they aren’t seen in the wrong light. “I don’t wake up, look for my shadow and decide how the weather will be like that. You can’t compare us to groundhogs. I’m a student, not a weather-predicting marmot,” said junior Mia Dove.

I explored science to discover if it was something the Kappas ate. Preliminary research has proven that cottage cheese and quinoa do not improve meteorological skills. Another theory was that time spent in Prentiss Hall, with the adjustable thermostats, increases temperature awareness because of ability to control the room temperature. But then, everyone in Prentiss should have the gift. Perhaps it is all the key, that just like Benjamin Franklin’s key on a kite in a thunderstorm, the keys all around Kappa section help Kappas get the best weather readings. A true conspiracy theory.

Rumors circulate that some Alpha Phi also have this sixth “bikini” sense. DGs say they go outside or check a weekly weather report online if they want to know the weather. Thetas say that if they just all keep their swimsuits on, eventually they will be ready, maybe even first out on a good day.

But most likely, I discovered that the Kappas’ “sense” comes from their aptitude with communication: “Well, if it seems like a really nice day, we just send an email out on the Kappa listserv with where and when we are sunbathing,” said Sophomore Sierra Funklelady. Case closed, for now.