Red Stick Gumbo


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?


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.”


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


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


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


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.”


Big screen plasma TVs…


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


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.


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?”


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.


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.


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


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!


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.
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