Red Stick Gumbo

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I’m not sure “unique” is the word I would use for a university (LSU) that allows this shorts shot in its yearbook (The Gumbo) sans caption, so we have no idea if this is a shrunken hacky sack or a walnut being tossed around, but unique is what it has declared itself to be. See?

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What’s weirder than a yearbook showing a student getting high? Someone still smoking pot after 1980.

Now take a journey with me if you will, back into the lives of Louisiana State University students during the 1985-1986 school year. The campus is located in Baton Rouge (aka Red Stick), Louisiana, and here’s a fun fact:

  • The city got its name from the blood-drenched poles that were used to hang bear heads and fish in various rituals that were carried out by the natives. Now just add voodoo and stir!

The rules of the Jam Jam ’85 (aka Jambalaya-Jamboree) included:

  1. First you don your gay apparel (overalls).
  2. Then you kiss the crawfish.

kiss3.  Then you put a camo shirt on, grab a girl with crawfish earrings, and sing a rousing rendition of Hank Williams’ “Jambalaya.”

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Altogether, that sounds quite promising. What a fun campus! No wonder Matt Damon chose LSU to pursue his bachelors of disc jockey.

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But he wasn’t the only fish in that Red Stick Gumbo. The man candy was a veritable feast for the eyes.

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Not your style? Well, check out United Colors of Benetton.

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I’m pretty certain that’s B-List 80s actor T.K. Carter on the far right, so Matt Damon wasn’t the only Oscar-winning actor on campus. And who could blame them? LSU dorm life could not be matched. Just life Stefan says on SNL, “This place has everything.”

stefan

Big screen plasma TVs…

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Okay, maybe not yet. But there were other options.

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Okay, well, big screen TVs hadn’t been invented yet. But that’s not the point. The point is you could lounge indoors or outdoors.

Gumbo010You could eat lunch at a restaurant called The Library, if you were desperately seeking…food.

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Why, you could even up and learn another language at the language lab–if you were willing to let the headphones jack up your sweet hairdon’t.

Gumbo016And you could wait with baited breath at this Residence Hall Workshop. I spy with my little eyes Panama Jack in the second row.

Residence Hall Workshop

Now, listen, I won’t waste much of your time with Greek life. But it gets weird with Delta Kappa Epsilon. At first, I was like, “Is that Chef from ‘Southpark’ in the middle? Is that Boris Becker?”

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Yeah, it is Boris Becker (ish), but it’s evidently Levy the Master Chef. My bad. Makes perfect sense. What the what? I know. It’s too much to process. Time for the mandatory 80s sax solo.

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Party Like It’s 1985

Louisiana State University 1985

Louisiana State University 1985

As you prepare for tomorrow’s New Year’s Eve celebration, take cues from the simpler, less rambunctious era of the 1980s. Slow down and appreciate the moment.

Back then, people were working for the weekend. After double shifts at Orange Julius, it was time for hardcore karaoke. Don’t be afraid to shine on New Year’s Eve.

You've got the eye of the tiger.

You’ve got the eye of the tiger.

Also, don’t drink if you’re underage. You know who you are. Surely her jacket doesn’t say what I think it says.

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Know when to say when. These guys stopped just shy of tipsy.

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Remember: friends don’t let friends drive drunk. Especially in tight Girbaud (wait–they weren’t popular yet) jeans. Mercy, I can smell the Drakkar Noir from here…

Pardon me, but are those Girbaud jeans?

Behold! Proof that Madonna used to be relevant!

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Just don’t let things get out of hand.

Tips On How Not To Be A Proud Southern Woman

Tips On How Not To Be A Proud Southern Woman

And lastly: come to terms with reality. You have your owns set of gifts and strengths, your own contribution you can make to this world. But face it: you will never, ever look as cool as this guy.

Me llamo Unibrow Pseudo-Fu Manchu.

Me llamo Unibrow Pseudo-Fu Manchu.

Pre-Depression 1928 Alcalde

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In my years of perusing old yearbook pages, I have found that the students’ portrait demeanors progress from stoic (you’ve seen Civil War era photos) to eternally wasted (beginning in the 60s and moving throughout the 80s). Humor was often saved for cartoons or jokes/limericks in the back of the book. However, the humor is usually so outdated, I can’t follow. And in some instances, just plain crazy.

I couldn’t make heads or tails of this one:

Alcalde006This yearbook belonged to Mabel E. Roberson from Humble, Texas, whom I imagine has since passed on, as she would be over 100 at this point.

Alcalde012Evidently, she did not spell “chaos” correctly, and was mocked for it, and understandably so. Chaos? Five little letters?

Alcalde005Her spelling may not have been up to par, but she did manage to make a “real friend.”

Alcalde014She also spent a happy night under the big bright moon with John C. Sutton.

Alcalde007She must have been too busy with John/Jack to give Kucera the time of day. He still mourned his broken heart.

Alcalde002Another man wanted to put her in jail with a life sentence. Egads, what sort of debt did she owe?

Alcalde001I combed these brittle pages and could not for the life of me find Mabel’s pic. I assume she was a little easier on the eyes than Sue Hill, big pimpin’ in her sparkly hat.

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It would have been a hard time to be in college, no? This was during Prohibition. For those of you non-Americans, Prohibition was a nationwide ban on the sale, production, importation, and transportation of alcohol from 1920 to 1933. I don’t imagine Italy or France enforced such a thing. It was a time of flapper bobs, mink coats (before PETA threw red paint on fur), and apparently–Harry Potter glasses.

Alcalde015Dancing around the maypole gaily, who could have imagined The Great Depression was only a matter of months away?

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Happy Anniversary To Me

That’s me in the corner, except with more coughing fits and joint pain. Oddly enough, that was how I felt when I first took to writing on WordPress one year ago today. For whatever reason, my immune system is compromised immediately after Christmas and fearfully close to the New Year. Anyhoo, it was that state of under-the-weatherness that caused me to vent on serious issues like baked potato toppings and the inaccessibility of egg nog at this time of year. I know: I need a bridge, a straw, and a full cup for my First World Problems. If you don’t know to what I’m referring, here’s a peek:

So thanks to all my readers as I post this 250th post. I appreciate this community of interesting people and look forward to another year of following the great blogs out there! Now I need to go eat some chicken soup.