Nothing teaches kids the importance of following rules like creating pointless ones for harmless fads — protected by free speech provisions of the Constitution (which the school hopefully teaches) no less — that would die out quickly if they said nothing. This will now live on for years and foster disrespect for important rules.

It started like this:

A new four-letter-word has some teenagers in Danvers afraid they might get their mouths washed out with soap.

The word is… meep.

Some say it was those pesky Muppets who started it. Remember Beaker? Some say it was the Road Runner. […] But Danvers High School principal Thomas Murray doesn’t care who started it, he just doesn’t want to hear it on school grounds. Murray called every student’s home with an automated message and sent out a mass email banning the word from school.

“Please be advised that any student who has the letters ‘meep’ on their clothing or uses the words verbally will face suspension from school…the police are monitoring this situation as well.”

The police? Really?

And has escalated with this:

It’s been a long time since I was in high school, but I still remember what it was like to be young, and chafing under what seemed like arbitrary and capricious rules set down by school authorities.

So in solidarity with the students of Danvers High, and on my own initiative, I took about five seconds and sent an email to Principal Thomas Murray ( ), Assistant Principal Mark Strout ( ), Assistant Principal Cornelia Varoudakis ( ), and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Lisa Dana ( ). All of these addresses are publicly available on the Danvers High School website.

My subject line said (in full), “meep.” The body said (in full), “Meep.”

Yesterday I received a reply email from Assistant Principal Mark Strout, which said (in full) “Your E-mail has been forwarded to the Danvers Police Department.”
Only a complete idiot would try to make and enforce (to teenagers, yet!) a rule that says “You’re not allowed to say meep.” And email a stranger in another state (an attorney, yet!) that there’s (impliedly) something illegal about sending an email that says “meep.”
In conclusion, meep.


  1. Micromike says:

    Letting assholes like this run our schools is why nobody gets an education in America. Why doesn’t he just stand nude in the playground and scream “Look at me!”?


  2. bbjester says:

    I think Thomas Murray has got his meeping panties in a bunch over a whole meeping lot of nothing. With guys like him in charge of educating our youth, I meep for the future !

  3. subatomic_rage says:

    DisneyChannel’s cartoon ‘Phineas and Ferb’ had an episode earlier this year called:

    ‘Chronicles of MEAP’.

    Funny show. Maybe the principal has an unfortunate case of a misspelled four letter word.

    Perhaps he should try: ‘Nothing to see here, move along…’

  4. Mick Hamblen says:

    How to stop kids from saying meep. Make it mandatory that they have to say meep. Tom needs to read The Order of the Phoenix. Start calling him Delores Jane Umbridge

  5. Cap'nKangaroo says:

    In my High School in the late 70’s we had a teacher who resembled Benny Hill as in “The Benny Hill Show”, which was on TV EVERY night. Sometimes 2 or 3 times on the weekend.

    We would whisper about the resemblance behind his back and enjoyed the fact that he took exception to it. This went on for several months until we had a school assembly for some unrelated reason. Towards the end of the assembly the teacher had reason to come on stage to say something about nothing important. But just before he left the stage he put on a silly grin and did a goofy salute in a dead-on impression of Benny Hill.

    He left the stage to thunderous cheers and applause and never showed any irritation to the comparison again. Naturally, it then faded away as a subject of discussion among students.

  6. Uncle Don says:


    How many of you got a police call-back?

  7. Michael says:

    FWIW: Here’s the page with all administrative contacts

  8. Animby says:

    I would like to have been at THAT board meeting: “Now that all our other problems are taken care of, what will we do about this “meep” thing?”

    If the man had kept his mouth shut, this would have passed out of vogue soon and been only an annoying memory. Instead, he has made himself a laughingstock, proven he doesn’t understand teenagers, students or the Constitution. This will undoubtedly end with the principal being taken down a notch or two and quite likely out of a job.

    Can you self-defeating?

  9. Animby says:

    SAY! Can you SAY self-defeating?


  10. thegreatestjake says:

    Life imitating cartoons…sounds about right.

  11. honeyman says:

    Why is it that people that really dont seem to understand kids often end up in jobs like ‘school principal’.

    I hope the cops bust his chops by hauling him down the station for wasting police time.

  12. Ralph, the Bus Driver says:

    I emailed the Superintendent, Principal, and Vice-Principal yesterday. So far they haven’t bounced back. I assume any being flagged would be because of they contain the word “meep”.

    Instead, I merely pointed out the bad example this showed the students. When adults in charge revert to childish behavior, it undermines the whole system. I also mentioned that the school administration should show leadership, not condescending, irresponsible attitudes.

  13. GRtak says:

    Yarp, meep meep meep meep meep. Meep meep meep! Narp yarp meep.

    I had an incident while in high school that happened near me. Guy standing next to locker talking to GF bumps another guy’s locker door onto his hand. He says “Shit” and gets suspended. While it may have clearly violated the rules, dude got his hand hit in the locker door and deserved some latitude. All the peeps nearby started saying shit until the teacher that hauled him away was out of site. A bit childish, but a good protest.

    So to this ass-hat I would like to say meep you, you worthless meeping meeper!

  14. Shane says:

    I sent two e-mails yesterday. The second contained M33P! M33p! Neither has come back. The first one probably got flagged. I am not exactly concerned about being extradited to yankeeland on what would be a misdemeanor harassing communications charge at worst. I doubt it is even that.

  15. chuck says:

    #36 – exactly. Since the principal had advanced notice, he could have announced at the start of the day that it was “meep” day, and made participation mandatory. Within minutes the whole thing would become uncool.

  16. oplama says:

    I for one support the ban of the meep word.
    After all freedom without education leads to anarchy
    banning the word was his only choice.
    And who is to blame for all of this?
    The schools are to blame because if the students were
    being taught then this would not have the time to occur.

  17. quadanar says:

    Here’s the DHS faculty listserv, here. Any meep up to meeping all of ’em?

    This guys in for one big meeping pile of meep once 4chan is in on this … off to 4chan!

  18. artemus says:


  19. If I were a student in that school, I would be organizing a protest to have every student wear a shirt with MEEP! on it in very large letters.

    As it is, I sent the following email to these idiots posing as educators:

    “It is my sincere wish that this issue escalates to the level that you are all forced to resign.

    Then there is a small chance that each of you will be replaced by someone that understands the responsibility of educational administrators is to provide a learning environment for students and not to issue totally inane regulations that are in themselves disruptive and counter-productive.

    What you are teaching with this is that authority figures are frequently stupid and not to be taken seriously. Good work for the Dumbing Down of America. You are obviously leaders in this movement.

    You people are total idiots and have no business as school administrators or serving in any other public capacity.”

  20. test says:


  21. Damian says:

    meep stands for maximum end expiatory pressure, its a measurement for how well you breath, and is a medical term. Tell your teacher that o.o

  22. LDF says:

    The people who have it right (above) are michael_gr, and both brm and (their responder) SN. The trouble is, the core problem is disrespect, but it’s hard to ban “disrespect” or “taunting;” you need something concrete.

    Most commenters, media and otherwise, have reacted just like most kids at the school: “ha! ban a word? how arbitrary and ridiculous! I’m going to say it over and over just to annoy them!” I get it; it’s fun and silly.

    But it misses the point: how tricky it is to stop disruptive behavior. Above all in middle schools!

    (Remember a few years ago, a school banned hugs? Same issue . . . it’s not that all the administrators are fools, it’s that rabble-rousers love to go overboard with superficially harmless actions!)

  23. Buzz says:

    Okay kids, here’s the drill: Someone in the back row starts a low, sort of buzzy hum. Others around him/her look up at the fluorescents. The hum should grow as others join in. All the while looking at the ceiling lights.

    As the teacher walks through the room to investigate, people nearest to him/her go silent, but those farther away are to join in.

    If he/she turns off the lights, the hum shall cease. Back on, the hum should slowly grow again.

    It’s acoustic keep-away.

    Extra points are awarded when a maintenance staff person is called. The hum should die away before they arrive.


  24. BS-Clothing says:

    Hey shameless plug for us, but get a Meep shirt.


  25. Lars says:

    LDF: You don’t seem to realize that respect has to be earned.

    And yes, that goes for leaders, too.

  26. Roger says:

    the state of massachusettsis really a nice place. the only thing wrong with it is the elite natzis who run it, from the governor’s office to the school custodians.

    this isn’t the democracy that i spent 20 yrs os my life defending. MEEP all of them.

  27. smtsr1956 says:

    where does one find a MEEP defense lawyer?
    Is there money in it?
    Where do I found a online class?
    Hopefully in Mass!!!!!!!!!!!!
    A a a a MEEP
    excuse meep
    Gotta go take a MEEP BRB
    got any MEEP paper

  28. Stunrut says:

    I just want to know what all of these school officials think “meep” means. Does anybody know?


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