Sunday, October 01, 2006

FLOGGING A LIFELESS STEED: ONE POSSIBLE EXPLANATION FOR THE (MILD) TENSION AT THIS WEEKEND'S REUNION

Below you will find the parody song that inspired a group of pledges from the Phi Pi Epsilon fraternity to surround and humiliate me in front of everyone in the dining hall (symbolic rape, anyone?) and the Brotherhood purpose unit to attempt to attack me at a video dance party in Commmons (fortunately I was tipped off) and some members acting on their own to chase and throw things at some of my friends from the radio station. This shitty little ditty polarized the campus for a few weeks. Twenty years later, both fraternties are defunct. New ones have taken their place of course. It was nonetheless heartening to hear the radio station's music director ask, "What's Brotherhood?"

Some more background: The "purpose units" at our small (1200) liberal arts campus consisted of groups that lived together -- such as the Black United and Concerned Students and International House -- as well as fraternities and sororities. Until this point they'd had prime housing set aside for them. But each year there were more new Greek units (it was the Reagan years after all), and assistant Dean Steve Watter (he didn't last long) came up with a new plan to make room draw more equitable. In other words, purpose units had to draw numbers along with everyone else. The Greeks were outraged, and circulated petitions. A group of big male frat-jocks brought these petitions door-to-door to my all-girls' dorm, and stood over us as they waited for us to sign. Which wouldn't have been that big a deal, except for the fact that they also happened to be carrying baseball bats. Intimidating? Oh, maybe just a little.....




from the 2/18/86 Stentor
The Poison Pen Creates a New Shuffle
(sung to the tune of The Superbowl Shuffle)
By Satya Cacananda


Chorus
We are the frats and sororities too
Creatin' a social life just for you
We like to have the parties for which you've helped pay
If they take away our housing we'll soon go 'way
It's pledge season so watch out during meals
We'll be singing our songs and sayin' our spiels
But we're not worried 'bout Szabo* trouble
They can't make us do the purpose unit shuffle

Asst. Dean of Students Steve Watter
This is Steve, and it's no wonder
I may have made a big housing blunder
The Greeks're mad at me, you know it's true
But I'm just doin' what I was told to do
Change the system and move them around
Put 'em on South* in one compound
But I'm not here to feathers ruffle
I just came to do the purpose unit shuffle

Greek Heads
We're the heads of the Greeks, big and bold
Do what we say our our alumni will withhold
We don't wanna mess with the status quo
Drawin' with the rest would really blow
Some of the units really do good stuff
So we enlisted their aid when things got rough
Please don't try to burst our bubble
They can't make us do the purpose unit shuffle

Independents
Our social life is not the issue here
We know how to have fun without your beer
Just leave us alone and quit wrecking our meals
with your stupid petitions and your pledging ordeals
Some of the units actully have a purpose
Those are not the ones that bother us
So get out of our faces, on the double
We don't wanna hear about the purpose unit shuffle


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*South Campus was home to gnarley dorms that featured Cabrini Green-inspired architecture

**Szabo is the dining hall where everyone ate together. Well, where everyone ate with their own little cliques....just as they did Friday night at The Lantern.

3 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:57 AM

    time to move on satya, & leave the Stentor & college assholes in the rear view mirror.

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  2. This has nothing to do with anything related to your old college days except that it is also a parody song. Sorry I can't come to your every-other-Sunday class anymore, I live in Evanston now.

    Cut and Run by Aaron Rosen
    From Lyrics and Music by Liz Phair

    The US went in there armed
    Bush didn't know where he was at first
    Just that he was sure they’d be charmed
    And almost immediately we felt sorry
    'Cause we didn't think this would happen again
    No matter what Bush could prove away
    Just that we didn't think this would happen again
    With or without our best intentions
    And whatever happened to my country
    The kind of place that tries to win you over?
    And whatever happened to my country
    The kind of place that makes war 'cause they bombed us?

    And I want my country
    I want my country
    I want all that stupid old shit like Jennifer Flowers
    Jennifer Flowers

    Powell warned we’d be dead
    He said we had a lot of work to do
    But he heard the doubts in his head
    And almost immediately he felt sorry
    'Cause he didn't think this would happen again
    No matter what he could prove away
    Just that he didn't think this would happen again
    With or without his best intentions

    And we want our country
    We want our country
    We want all that stupid old shit like Monica Lewinsky

    I can see it in Cheney’s glare
    We’re not spending another year in there
    It's cut and run, cut and run
    Just like back in seventy-five
    Cut and run, cut and run
    Just like back in fifty-three

    Bush almost felt bad
    He said that we should stay the course
    But I knew much better than that
    And almost immediately I felt sorry
    'Cause I didn't think this would happen again
    No matter what they could prove away
    Just that I didn't think this would happen again
    Without or without their best intentions

    And I can feel it in the wind
    We’re not fightin’ a war we can win
    It's cut and run, cut and run
    Just like back in seventy-five
    Cut and run, cut and run
    Just like back in fifty-three

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous4:31 PM

    You really need to put all this negativity behind you. Are you sated now that you really "stuck it" to all the frat guys that embarrassed you in the cafeteria? You must admit, you antagonized them with your song. You are one of those people who can dish it out, but cannot take it. What did you expect? To be loved by people who you mocked and belittled?

    ReplyDelete