A few alternatives for ‘freshbashing’ offered

Hollan Holm

Freshmen and freshwomen alike get a raw deal when it comes to their first year in college.

I remember not too long ago when I was a cocky, brash, loud-mouthed freshmale at Western who brazenly insulted anyone in my path to a duel of words. When this behavior came to punches, I would squeal in pain and scamper away.

It never made sense to me why people who actually knew more than I did – like upperclassmen and professors – were telling me what to do.

Now that I am a cocky, brash, loud-mouthed sophomore, I understand the error of their ways. I should ignore a fresh-individual’s outburst of sass, even though I may think I have earned a measure of respect with my hill-topping experience.

Setting aside fresh-bashing ways is hard to do, at least for me. Why leave my dorm and participate in a constructive group like the Student Government Association when I can have fun slapping around some fresh-meat?

There must be a cure for this age rage I feel.

I found my therapy over Labor Day Weekend while loafing on my parents’ couch, pondering the meaning of life.

It must have been the intellectual television fair I watched. In between alternating hours of “The Man Show” on Comedy Central and “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” on TNT, I stumbled on The National Network, otherwise known as TNN.

To my glee, the former Nashville Network had been renovated. Programmers had taken an axe to the country cooking shows and gospel hoe-downs I remembered from my youth. In their place was a treasure trove of educational programming like “Slam Ball” and the “Dukes of Hazzard.”

But I found the answer when I struck television gold – reruns of “American Gladiator.” The early ’90s Vanilla Ice-style mullets and patriotic-themed spandex definitely made the difference.

That’s what we need here at Western – gladiator-style combat.

We can all live out our fantasies of flying giant rubberized Q-tips by watching the suffering of others on our own “Western Kentucky Gladiators.”

Imagine a joust . on top of Pearce-Ford Tower.

We can even mount a tennis ball launcher on top of the Cherry Statue. Challengers will have to race up College Street dodging 100 m.p.h tennis ball blasts.

We can produce this competition cheaply too. We’ll need red and white for the spandex, no blue. We can swipe some balls from the tennis team as well, like they need them.

Basketball coach Dennis Felton willing, I’ll recruit men’s basketball center Chris Marcus and his Wookie-sized arms as the joust Gladiator “Heightro.”

The only missing pieces are the challengers. Using convicted criminals might not be unusual, but I think it would be a little cruel. After all, they’re people too.

We need a group of people that are in abundant supply and not likely to be missed and that leaves only one logical choice – freshmen.

Picks O’ the Week

•If you have a hankering for some “Southern-Rock-Blues-Harmonizing” music, scoot on over to Tidball’s Friday night. Starting at 10:30 p.m. “Dry Land Fish” will be playing a one-time-only reunion concert. The cover charge is $3. Did I mention $2 imports?

•If the Southern rock scene isn’t your style, check out Niteclass on Friday starting at 8 p.m. This three indie-band extravaganza will feature the top 40 stylings of “Your Love, My Executioner,” “Suffocate Faster” and “Sworn to Secrecy.” Three bands for the price of none, what more do you want?

•I have it on good authority from the Herald football reporter that there could be actual points on the visitors side of the scoreboard this Saturday. The Hilltoppers will tackle and trample Western Illinois at L.T. Smith Stadium. Kick-off is 1:30 p.m. You’ve already paid for the tickets with your $100 athletic fee, so go.

Hollan Holm is mushroom cloud-laying (Blankety-Blank), (Blankety-Blank). He’s Super-Fly TNT. He’s the Guns of the Navarone. So e-mail him at [email protected] and tell him what’s up.