North Carolina Newspapers is powered by Chronam.
The Tar HeelThursday, July 20, 1 98945
Opmion '' """" " """""
This column is intended as an'
Indispensable Guide for Incoming
Students at ihe University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill. Freshmen
and junior transfers, ihis column is
College has its funny quirks, but
there's absolutely nothing to be wor
ried about. Upperclassmen probably
won't beat you up for no reason.
Freshman hazing isn't what it used
to be ever since 1912, when I.W.
Rand, a freshman from Smithfield,
N.C., was killed by sophomores in a
freak accident. No lie. Today, the
worst thing you'll probably encoun
ter is the food. See? Things aren't so
As the last days of your precolle
giate life fade in your mind like last
year's senior English course, your
thoughts may begin to turn toward
this fall and that little ol' university
you will be attending in a place called
Chapel Hill. This is natural. By now,
you may have begun to accept the
fact that, yes indeed, you will be start
ing all over again, that you will be
enrolled in a far larger school filled
with strange and intimidating people.
Yes, Virginia, you are going to be a
freshman at UNC. And this guide
should give you some suggestions
If we weren't crazy, w
The other day I was sitting around
sorting through all my death threats
when I realized, "Hey, I'm sorting
through death threats!," which, I don't
know about you, can be pretty dis
combobulating for me. It was at this
point that I had a flash of under
standing, a realization about the very
essence of life. Either that or my toi
The first thing I realized was that
the world is insane. The second thing
I realized was that they've canceled
So this got me to thinking: If the
world really is insane, how the hell
do we cope? How can we live in an
insane world? How can we go on
living? How can we thrive in a world
with absolutely no meaning? Does
this mean we can get free auto insur
ance? Even for Chryslers?
I was still feeling discombobulated.
(Damn, I love that word. It just rolls
off the tongue, "Discombobulated,
discombobulated.") (Editor's note: it
takes so little to make this guy happy).
Anyway, I took a walk down Fran
klin Street, humming that rock V
roll philosophical classic "Talk Dirty
The Tar Heel welcomes all reader comment. In exchange for access to
the Reader's Forum, we ask that you follow a few simple rules:
All letters and columns must be typed and double-spaced for ease of
All letters and columns must be signed by the authors), with a limit
of two signatures per letter or column.
Students should include name, year in school, major, phone number
and home town. Other members of the University community should
include similar information.
The Tar Heel reserves the right to edit for space, clarity and vulgarity.
Letters should be mailed to the editor or placed in the drop box
outside The Tar Heel office.
guide to life at Camp Carolimia
and tips as to what really goes on
around UNC and how to keep your
parents from finding out.
First, college is really just like
camp, only better. You don't have to
make your bed. You don't have to
mow the lawn. You don't have to be
in by midnight. There are a lot of
people your age. A lot of those are of
the opposite sex. In other words,
you're with a bunch of other rabbits
getting their first real taste of free
dom in the big breeding ground of
college. It's your parents' worst night
mare. There are a couple of other things
to know, though. At C-TOPS (after
which you don't remember anyone
you met), there's a big assembly in
Memorial Hall (which, you may re
alize, is not air-conditioned). A lot of
older people in robes will speak. They
will be introduced as Dean so-and-so.
They are not all named Dean.
This is not a coincidence Dean is
a title, like doctor. No one is really
named Dean at Chapel Hill, except
To Me," feeling bluer than three-month-old
milk, when I stumbled onto
something; or, rather, into something.
That something was the ghost of
Mel Blanc. Actually it was a fire
hydrant, but I could see Mel's ghost
a few feet away.
"Mel!" I shouted.
He didn't say anything at first,
just smiled a mischievous smile, and
in my mind I saw the mischievous
grin of Bugs Bunny, eyebrows raised,
carrot poised, like the time he was
about to shoot Yosemite Sam over
the desert fortress' wall for the ump
And behind Mel was Groucho,
Harpo and Chico Marx. And behind
them the Three Stooges were slap
ping each other around. And there
was Jack Benny, and Spike Jones,
Charlie Chaplin, Will Rogers. All the
great comic ghosts of the past cen
tury, gathered together on Franklin
Dean Smith, who is not a doctor and
will not speak at the assembly.
Also, find out where Woollen Gym
is before drop-add. You'll spend hours
in line and rearrange your schedule
like it's a Rubik's Cube and finally
end up with Serbo-Croatian as a lan
guage and advanced genetic engineer
ing as a science. It's OK, it's only
natural. But remember, always add
before you drop. You'll live longer.
Carolina is known for many
achievements and distinguishing fea
tures, and the Robert B. House Li
brary is no exception. Better known
as the Undergrad, it was rated in the
top 10 places to pick-up and be picked
up by Playboy magazine a few years
ago. The Undergrad is your friend.
It's open until 2 a.m. You can also
Time-Out is a fast-food place open
all night and day and is known for its
chicken biscuits. Time-Out is your
friend. When you stagger in there at
4 a.m. smelling like Spuds McKen
zie, you'll know what I mean. Ask
Second, it is always desirable to
look like you know what you're doing.
If you're like me, you'll carry around
a map your first few days and ask
fellow students where the SAC is,
Street, gathered together to tell me
something, the vast secret of life it
self, the deep, bright shaft which
erupts from the darkness of eternal
ignorance, the sword of Truth in the
rock of Evil, the quested spring of all
that is right with the world.
Do you want to know what that
So do I, because they wouldn't
tell me, the bastards. All they did all
night long was torment me. Mel Blanc
kept repeating "Eh, what's up, doc?"
in my left ear. Moe kept slapping the
crap out of me. Spike Jones played
Beethoven's Fifth on the slide whistle.
Jack Benny told the same lame joke
about a chimpanzee in a bar:
"Chimpanzee goes into a bar,
y'see," he would start out and mug
to the camera, "orders a martini and
lays down a ten dollar bill. The bar
tender, see, doesn't know what to
make of this, see, so he takes the bill
over to the manager, see. He shows
the ten dollar bill to the manager and
says, 'Oh Rochester ."
with this permanent expression of
bewilderment on your face. You don't
want to do this. You tend to run into
people, and upperclassmen have the
nasty habit of directing freshman in
the opposite direction of their desti
nation. This can be avoided. Put a
map discreetly in your notebook, on
the inside lenses of your glasses or
- the best way drawing a map of
the campus on the top of your hand
so you can look like you're waving
to someone you know as you take a
quick look at where Dey Hall is. And
because of some cosmic joke, it's
pronounced die Hall, not day Hall.
And don't ask anyone why that's
a Definite Freshman Move.
If you can find your way to classes,
you may be surprised to find some of
them larger than your high school
no lie. Don't despair, though: If you're
in the infamous Hamilton 100, the
chairs are a tad less comfortable than
your bed, but the professor will never
see you sleep. Take turns sleeping
and taking notes with a friend.
If you have been put on South
Campus, don't worry about it. First
of all, North Campus isn't air-condi-tioned
either. Carmichael Dorm (and
no matter what certain people think,
they're dorms, not residence halls) is
He never finished the damn joke!
He kept calling for Rochester! I
wanted to know the punchline! I
wanted to know why the chimpanzee
ordered a martini and not a Manhat
tan, which is what most chimpanzees
order when they go out for the
evening! needed to know the punch
line! Then it hit me. It hit me in the
form of a rubber chicken in the hand
of Harpo Marx. It was the punchline,
the ultimate punchline. It was all
absurd. It was insane! Life was nuts!
It was one big joke! GET IT!
Fortunately about this time I woke
up. It seems when I tripped over that
hydrant I'd whammed my noggin up
against a large, immovable brick wall.
I'd never seen those ghosts, never
been hit by a rubber chicken.
Or had I?
Face it gang, we're living in an
insane world, and the only way we
can get through it is through laugh
ter. That's why I write this column,
Editor Dave Glenn
Assistant Editor Sarah Cagle
Assistant Editor John Bland
Staff Reggie Alston, Amy Andrews, Randy Basinger, Maddie
Bauman, Beth Boorman, Paul Boyd, Paul Bredderman, Richard
Broadwell, George Brooks, Jennifer Brunnemer, Chris Chalfant,
Eric Chasse, Joanna Davis, Susan Dellinger, Dawn Delvecchio,
Stacia Fairchild, Kelly Ferrell, Natalie Godwin, Jim Greenhill, Jada
Harris, Johanna Henderson, David Hildreth, Gary Jacobs, Jason
James, Susan Jensen, Sheila Johnston, Jim Justice, Gray Kelly, Jeff
Kiel, Ramesh Krishnaraj, Elizabeth Murray, Mike Partridge, Al
Ripley, Erik Rogers, Jason Sanford, Theresa Seastrom, Donna Sell
ers, Elizabeth Sherrod, Brian Springer, Barbie Stuckey, Cameron
Tew, John Voncannon.
air-conditioned, so hate people in
Carmichael. Second, everyone does
a lot of walking on campus, and if
you have to do a little more, you'll
work off that Freshman 50 increase
that much faster. This is just what
I've heard I lived on North Cam
pus. And about walking: Don't pay
attention to those little green and red
men in traffic signs at intersections.
That's stupid, and no one does it.
You're in college now: If there are
no cars coming, go.
Now about the social life at Chapel
Hill. It's 60-40 girls, so naturally guys
are pretty much treated like slabs of
meat, and all the women run around
with spatulas. Drinking goes on here
at Chapel Hill; after all, there are
students over 21. "And I feel com
pelled to tell you that underage drink
ing does happen. Do birds fly? Par
ents, wake up and smell the coffee.
Everyone in college is a neolithic
bipedal simian living for the next Keg-o-rama
Festival. It's natural.
Finally, no one here really knows
more than you do. They've just been
See you in the fall.
Stuart Hathaway is a senior po
litical science major from Charlotte.
to give people a chance to laugh.
There's enough bad news in the world,
enough insanity. For only a couple
of stupid, meaningless paragraphs I
give those who choose to read them
a reason to smile and forget. I'm not
aiming to reason with the world, I'm
only providing a means for coping
with it, a basic human need. I don't
think there's a thing wrong with that.
Of course, a lot of you don't find
what I write funny, and that's fine. It
doesn't mean you don't have a sense
of humor, it just means you don't
have the same sense of humor as me.
And if you really don't like it, don't
read it. But hey, stop with the death
threats, OK? I just saw "Lethal
Weapon 2" and I'm starting to get a
little paranoid around my toilet.
John Bland is a senior English
major from Charlotte who really
thinks the secret of life is the punch
line to that Jack Benny joke, which
he believes is, "Nine bucks a mar
tini, I'm not surprised."