Welcome to our home! We live in a beautiful colonial-revival mansion in Brookline. We hope you'll drop by in person and take the tour. Our yellow house is a pleasant sight; see for yourself!
The front yard is a constantly changing environment, as people with various degrees of landscaping ideas join the house. Some of us think it's fun to get covered in mud while working in the garden and waging war against the dandelions. Our efforts to make the yard pretty are admirable, but cannot rival the impressive community rose garden immediately across the street. Thetans can often be found lounging on the porch when the weather is nice, enjoying the sunshine and the sounds of little children playing in the park.
The Living Room
When you step through our front door, you'll see a room to your right full of magazines, couches, people, and potted plants. This is our living room, where members of the house like to play board games and study. When you visit in person, come say hi to the goldfish who are living over in the corner.
Every Saturday, we eat lunch and dinner while sprawled out in this room. Alums of the house tend to drop by for Saturday dinners, proving both that life goes on outside MIT, and that ET always, in some way, remains a home for people who've lived here.
The Chapter RoomWhen the Saturday dinner crowd gets large enough, it tends to spill over into the chapter room across the hall. Some of our fraternity's most important events, such as initiation and pledge meetings, happen in this room. It is, therefore, the most formal and elegant room in the house.
It's cozy elegance draws thetans to roast smores in the fireplace and curl up with a book from our impressive library. You can often find a thetan playing a piece on the grand piano. We also have an assortment of other random instruments. You're welcome to play any of them, including the bongo drums.
Much of our household library, complete with everything from science fiction to academic literature, covers almost an entire wall. Next to our collection of sheet music and our Commander's ceremonial...sword? epee? rapier?... and gavel. If you look at the walls, you'll see composite photos of all the house members from the past four years. Our fraternity's charter hangs proudly on the front wall, along with a statement of our fraternal ideals of Love, Truth, and Honor.
This is a nice, quiet place to sit and contemplate your calculus homework, stare wistfully at the kids playing in the park across the street, or just to take a nap.
Dining Room and Kitchen
A typical dinner at Epsilon ThetaAt the end of the main hallway, you'll find the dining room. Every night, around 6pm, we ring the dinner bell. This serves as a signal to Thetans to put down their work and come to dinner, where they can let off steam while ingesting vital nutrients. The designated waiter for the night bustles around the room, collecting hot drink requests and replenishing the serving dishes when they start to run low.
We subscribe to the belief that dinner nourishes the soul in addition to the body. Around here, it's generally a light-hearted affair: Thetans tend to laugh a lot during dinner. You are always welcome to join us for meals.
The KitchenOur cook, Karen, provides us with seven home-cooked meals a week. We have dinner Monday though Thursday, as well as on Saturday. She also makes us lunch on Saturday and Sunday. We always provide a vegetarian entree in addition to some type of meat, and we're happy to accommodate any other dietary restrictions you might have.
Just because we have a cook, though, doesn't mean we don't know our way around the kitchen! In fact, we have an industrial-strength kitchen, complete with all the materials necessary to feed a bunch of hungry engineers. We've got enough pots and pans to cook for an army! Hungry? The double-doored refrigerator in front of you is usually full of delicious left-overs. You can keep your own private stash of food in the personal fridge just inside the door. We keep big batches of staples like flour and eggs here, which you're welcome to use.
The PitDown the stairs and into the basement, you will find the Pit. Why the "Pit"? Long ago, the house was heated by coal, which was stored in a coal pit down here in the basement. We've since switched to natural gas, but the name has stuck.
Down here is the main social space of the house where you'll find a projector, dedicated media computer, Xbox 360, Wii, PS2, and a bunch of other entertaining electronics. This area is eternally exempt from study conditions. More likely than not, you'll find someone playing Final Fantasy or DDR or watching a movie on our projector. We also have an impressive stereo system. This space is lined with amazing murals painted by various pledge classes. Turn off the lights and look around; you'll see various glow-in-the-dark curiosities.
You'll find our laundry room in the corner. We've got a washer and dryer, along with a big box of free laundry detergent. Anyone who lives here gets to use these free of charge. There are also two tool rooms down here, filled with all the supplies and power tools we need to keep our house in good repair.
Our Athena clusterElsewhere in the pit is our very own Athena cluster. These machines are arguably more powerful than those found on campus. With all the software required by MIT courses loaded on them, thetans will often be found working in this convenient space. It also has two printers: a black-and-white double-sided laser and a color double-sided laser.
You'll see the coke room to your left as you exit the Pit. It's a wondrous place, filled with snack food and carbonated beverages. Members can come down here any time of the day or night, grab a snack, and note what they've purchased on the sign-up list on the fridge. A couple of times a year, we go to Costco and purchase mass quantities of stuff at wholesale prices and resell them at-cost, which gets added to the member's house bill. For our guests, the junk food is on the house! You may notice industrial-sized cans of tomato paste along one wall, since this room also serves as the cook's pantry.
What, no beer? It's true-- Epsilon Theta is a socially dry house. This means that we don't serve alcohol at our parties... nor do we have a beer fridge.
Hutch; this room holds 2-3 peopleMost of the house's personal rooms can be found here on the second floor. Every member of the house is assigned a personal room, complete with a desk, dresser, wardrobe, and high speed internet connection. Most of the rooms are either doubles or triples in capacity, but a few singles and quads can also exist, depending on how many people are living at the house.
Every room has its own unique shape and configuration. Some are long and narrow, others are big and sociable. Often, the name of the room will reflect its shape or geographical location in the house. Big Back is usually the most social room, as it is quite large and located at the back of the house immediately atop the staircase.
Of course, the character of each room is defined by those living in it. Everyone has an opportunity to request rooms with their best friends or to try out living with new roommates every semester.
The DormitoryYou probably noticed that the personal rooms did not have beds in them. Instead, we have all the beds arranged neatly in the attic. This sleeping arrangement is another holdover from our days as a naval fraternity. Everyone living here is assigned a bed. We've got a one-body-per-bed rule, and we take care to keep this room quiet and dark.
We often get questions about this room. We find, however, that this arrangement has many advantages over having separate bedrooms. It is kept dark and quiet at all hours because it's only used for sleeping. One can go up to the dorm to take a nap in the middle of the day or turn in early the night before a big test without being disturbed by roommates making noise or trying to study.
Rather than using a traditional alarm clocks, which would wake up everyone else too, we either sign up for wake-ups or use silent alarms. Wake-ups are performed by designated house members from 7am to 8:30am on weekdays. These folks will make sure you get out of bed in time for class. A silent alarm goes under your pillow and shakes, rather than rings, at the appointed hour.