Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania.
A Message From Ramos Dupre, Dean of Students:
I want to take this opportunity to welcome you to Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania.
Each September, new freshmen arrive lugging suitcases bursting with questions and clean socks. „Where’s the Magnolias?“ they ask sophomores.
„What are nonrefundable meal tickets and what do teachers think about taking a sick day from time to time?“
„Would you rather die peacefully among friends at the age of 25, or painfully and alone at the age of 50?“
„Would you accept $ 1,000,000 to leave beautiful Pennsylvania and never set foot in it again?“
And many more. To answer these questions, I’d like to tell you the true story of two Swarthmore College freshmen.
Wei was a bright boy from a good family. His roommate, Phil, was a wiseacre with long sideburns. Each morning at 5:45 a.m., Wei would rise, say his prayers to the god of his parents‘ choice, and jump into a cold shower. By 7:30 his shined shoes found him finishing his scholarship job hosing off things in the bio lab, and ready to enjoy his day of classes with a full binder.
Phil never studied, thought campus leaders were „a**lickers“, and rarely woke before noon. Phil had a bad attitude, something that goes hand in hand with smart remarks, poor posture, and improper programs of personal hygiene.
At graduation, Wei received a summa cum laude for his fine thesis on the Physics of Walking in Ancient European Cultures, and Phil barely squeaked by with mumbled excuses and borrowed homework.
Wei became an first-rate, honored drone scientist for the US Air Force – Phil drifted from job to job, working as cab-driver and doing dirty jobs for the Mob. He joined Alcoholics Anonymous in 1993-94, 1996-98, 2000, 2002-05, his long sideburns following him around like two Communist sympathies. Phil was last seen in 2006 and rumored to be part of the widened roadway at Interchange 6 on the New Jersey Turnpike.
Good grades – or long sideburns and death – the choice is yours.
Parrish Hall, Swarthmore College
By the way: The Iranians would never H-bomb a small campus like Swarthmore, many freshmen think. They should talk to their frat brothers from Nagasaki State, class ’45.
You are man enough and know what I mean by that: Have fun! And lots of pep! As long as possible.