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Gil C. Schmidt was born. Lucky for him and some 416 people, many of who don't seem to know it. Lives in Puerto Rico, which is convenient because he also works from there. Gil writes about dozens of real things (with relish) and dozens of imaginary things (like phantasmagoric pickles), in separate forums. Author of several books and a son, Gil gets in trouble when he's bored. Please head to the egress now.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Student Body Elections

It happened once a year, I think in the spring. Posters and flyers would circulate, The Daily Mississippian would pretend to cover “issues,” an assortment of people would knock on your dorm room door at odd hours to toss banalities at your feet and carefully-rehearsed impromptu scenes would erupt in the Student Union in support of some faceless drone or the other.

Student Body elections had all the charm of a hangnail. The best thing to do was just get it over with quickly, as painlessly as possible, understanding that there would always be a smidgen of pain in the process.

The truly annoying part of the process was the monkey fever intensity frat boys and sorority girls would display in favor of their brother/sister/third-cousin on Aunt Becky May’s side. The whole Student Body deal was a Greek thang, more a show of plumage and just as weighty in the grand scheme of things.

The independents, those of us wise enough to skip the Greek tragedy, made up a majority of the students. So for once, the Greeks had to come to us to help secure their puny ambitions. If Greeks bearing gifts were to be treated warily, Greeks with empy hands and empty smiles were to be run from.

Yet we held our ground. Some of us curtly, some of us patiently and some of us… well, some of us just had to do it our way. And in astonishing fashion, be frustrated anyway.

As many times as I was approached by a frat boy or a sorority girl and urged to vote in the STUDENT! BODY! ELECTIONS!, I would shake my head ruefully and say: “I can’t vote. I’m illegitimate.”

Eyes would glaze over, smiles would fade to blank and the usual response was a timid “Sorry” and a quick retreat to safety.

Absurdity aside, I was just aching to have one of those empty Greek urns say “Bastard,” so I could retort “It takes one to know one.”

Did I ever get to complete my pitiful little one-act play? ETA ALPHA!


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