All Around the Liberal Arts

By Veronique Bergeron

Bowdoin CollegeIn the Oct.13 edition of The Mac Weekly, we updated our readers on Badger Johnson, a former Mac student with a penchant for outdoor living. Johnson was well known on campus for sleeping in a tent by the river, walking around with a sleeping bag in lieu of a coat, and promoting a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

As it turns out, Johnson is quite a trendsetter.

The Boston Globe Magazine recently reported on Bowdoin student Willy Oppenheim of New Canaan, Conn., who has created a stir by living in a tent for the entirety of a Maine winter. Oppenheim told The Globe that he opted to live outdoors to avoid “certain modes of interaction in a dorm.” The sophomore has created quite a following and often hosts several sleepers a night. “Last night, five people slept in here with me,” he said.

Duke University

Duke students are reinventing the play date. On Friday Nov. 18, an informal campus group called DukePlays sponsored an enormous party, the Great Duke Play In, hosting close to 1000 faculty, staff and students for an afternoon of good clean fun. Event coordinators provided four-square balls, sidewalk chalk, and participants added hula hoops, soap bubbles, and Frisbees to the offerings. Coordinators also provided bagged lunches with Capri sun, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, a note from “mom,” and a flyer on ways to reclaim play on campus. The group’s founder, Rachel Weeks ’07, told The Chronicle that the organization aims to inform people that their free time is their own.

“It’s about playing well–wherever, however it is you play.”

Auburn University

Auburn graduates are sticklers for tradition. When rumors began to spread that the university’s marching band, the Tiger Eyes, was considering doing away with the school’s majorettes, outrage ensued.

A vocal group of anonymous drill team advocates has started a website, www.savethemajorettes.com, and is currently working on a campaign to get the word out and save the dying program. According to the directors of Tiger Eyes, fewer and fewer young women are auditioning for the team. One director went on to say that the majorette program was actually being merged with the band, incorporating dance into the marching band’s on-field routine.

And what started all the rumors? Last year the majorettes decided to stop wearing their iconic spangley boots. Students appear not to mind the change, in fact, the captain of the flag team admitted that the change went largely unnoticed.

However, the band’s director believes alumni are responsible for all of the hubbub. “The people who are doing this are a handful [of] ladies who were majorettes back in the ’70s and ’80s that just think they don’t like these changes, as positive as we feel like they are,” he told The Auburn Plainsman.

In unrelated news, Macalester’s football team recently acquired 40 pairs of spangly boots from an undisclosed seller.