The Mysterious Mustard Menace


Trever Tilton

Mustard packet sits inside a band members locker on Nov 9, 2022.

The mysterious Mustard Menace has recently taken the De Soto High School band by storm.

The Mustard Menace earned the name because of the peculiar and mysterious use of the school lunch mustard packets.

Band Director Matt Bradford shares his experience with the devious mustard activities.

“It started off with stealing mustard packets from the cafeteria, which was not the fun part,” Bradford said. 

The fun part Bradford refers to was in the beginning, when the jokes were innocent and controlled.

“They [the Mustard Menace] would leave them in funny places like on my office phone, which had been there for a couple of days and Mr. Kaul was anxiously waiting for me to find it,” Bradford said.

Even freshman band member Olivia Frick found the joke funny at first.

“It was funny until it got to the point where it was really immature and actually damaged stuff,” Frick stated.

The mystery started in the arts hallway and quickly made its way to band lockers, people’s belongings and even trickled into teachers’ offices.

“Packets of Mustard were left in lockers, instrument stands and other places. It was all at very weird times. I would go into the band office, come back out and there would be a mustard packet sitting on my computer,” Bradford said. “It was funny at first when it was just a few, but when it kept coming it needed to stop.”

One of the Mustard Menace’s favorite targets was senior Drum Major Anna D’Andrea.

Senior Anna D’Andrea shows off her stash of poetic mustard notes on Nov 9, 2022. (Trever Tilton)

“Frankly, for me, it was all fun and games until I started getting little notes attached to mustard packets getting left in my locker,” D’Andrea said. “They were always little poems, musing at my inability to unmask the true identity of that dijon deviant.”

Attaching notes with poems to the mustard packets could be seen as a form of harassment; however, all of the notes left in D’Andreas locker were innocent and did not target anyone in specific, other than keeping the mystery of the Mustard Menace at large.

“Their rhymes taunted me as I saw the fine arts hallway get gradually painted yellow. I was no closer to catching the keeper of the condiments,” D’Andrea said.

One note that was left in D’Andreas locker stated, “I love the name you gave me oh, how you entertain me! ‘Mustard Menace’ this is the ‘Mustard Menace’ and  it is true!” 

If the mustard packets alone weren’t enough the little notes turned it into something more than just a joke.

“It was clever at first when it was just a few. People thought it was funny, so they kept doing it. It went on for about a week and that’s when we put the kibosh on the whole operation,” Bradford said. “I think multiple people might have been involved.”

Surprisingly the infamous Mustard Menace has still yet to be officially caught. While rumors are going around as to who it is, many are surprised that the culprit is still walking among us, waiting to strike again.

“I wonder how they must feel, still veiled in their mustard mystery, knowing they managed to do it all without getting caught yellow-handed,” D’andrea said. “There may be no more mustard packets appearing in my locker, but I am certain the name ‘Mustard Menace’ won’t be forgotten.”

The general consensus around the Mustard Menace is that it was funny until it started to cause damage, presenting more harm than good.

The real question is, who is the mustard Menace? Are there multiple Menaces squeezing yellow around the arts hallway or does DHS have a mustard-loving ghost?