The Rice Thresher (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 36, No. 2, Ed. 1 Wednesday, September 22, 1948 Page: 2 of 4
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Purpose at Guidance
The members of the freshman guidance com-
mittee, or whoever have, set themselves up as perpe-
tuators of "Rice traditions and customs," should be
called upon to explain the exact purposes of the
freshman guidance program.
The type of program that has been used this
year would be more fitting on a campus with that
good old "frat spirit"; where to be anybody you
have to "belong" to a fraternity or a sorority.
Apparently the guidance committee wants fresh-
men to be able to parrot the school's history and
traditions like Aggie fish ^must learn to repeat
the traditions of Aggieland. Perhaps the guidance
committee should require freshmen to learn Greek
in order to read the inscriptions on the cornerstones.
The mighty upperclassmen would look rather ridic-
ulous imposing "five licks" 011 a freshman who
couldn't read the inscriptions.
Is school spirit such a formalized thing that the
traditions must be memorized, drummed into the
heads of new students ? The question, of course, is
rhetoric, and the answer is "No."
Rice student spirit, at its best, means an ap-
preciation of individuality, the depreciation of "mass-
es." This campus should be a friendly one where
strangers, and new students, are greeted cordially,
and not "bulled" around.
The Rice student association is not a great big
fraternity. Rice doesn't need or want a "frat spir-
it," a feeling of belonging to •"something bigger
than all of us." Student spirit should be based upon
appreciation of the individual, his talents and his
When Leonard Attwell, chairman of the Hon-
or Council, was addressing the orientation group
on the honor system as it functions at school,
there was some ominous giggling among the lis-
teners. These few seemed • particularly to enjoy
the part in which Atwell pointed out that upper-
class instructors often leave the room during
These students probably will not violate the
system during their stay here. But their high-
Schoolish action indelibly suggests that the atti-
tude of the student body toward the system is not
to be praised.
Many do not even realize that the system is
in danger. They do not realize that many evi-
dences on the campus point to the eventual—
though not inevitable—loss of that system which
permits students to be treated as honorable men
The blame does not fall on any one group;
nor does it fall only on those who cheat. This
dialogue is common: "I don't cheat, but I don't
turn in those who do when I see them. I figure
that they're just cheating themselves, not me.
They're only hurting themselves."
A person who takes this attitude to explain
his lack of support for this system is more than
likely not cheating only because the majority of
the students don't, and he doesn't turn in cheaters
because he lacks the conviction of his professed
Honesty by conformity, or honesty by fear
ofretribution, is not honesty at all.
A true honor system would be based <upon
many individual convictions as to the actual sup-
eriority of honesty, and the belief that all men
should be trusted, that all men deserve to be
trusted, and that an individual who violates such
a trust placed in him by his fellow men deserves
exposure and punishment.
Managing Editor Kenny Reed
Assistant Jeane Lewis
Society Etta Colish
Editor Brady Tyson
Assistant Robert Mcllhenny
Business Manager Nancy Hood
Assistant Tom Smith
Sports David Miller
Assistant Howard Martin
Intramurals Dewey Gonsoulin
Society Eleanor Sticelber
Feature Camilla Grobe
Entered as second class matter, October 17, 191,
at the Post Office, Houston, under the act of
March 3, 1879. Subscription price by mail
for one year, two dollars in advance.
Represented by National Advertising Service, Inc.,
420 Madison Ave., New York City
Students Are Treated as Adults,
Must Discipline Selves—Houston
, by Finis Cowan
(It is the tradition for the President of the Rice Institute to de-
liver at the beginning of each year a matriculation message to the in*
coming students. While space does not permit printing of the entire
text, the following story will be of interest in pointing out the gist
and tone of the address.) ■ 1 11
Dr. Houston welcomed the Fresh-
men and reminded them that it
would prove rewarding to learn the
traditions of Rice Institute.
The President warned the fresh-
men that the acadmic life is not an
easy one. Said Dr. Houston, "A
freshman often thinks he has a hard
lot. Perhaps many of you, during
the next few weeks will wonder why
you ever thought you wanted to
come to college."
"Perhaps one of the most discon-
certing things you will meet is that
you will be treated as adults. Here
you very largely discipline your-
selves. You meet adult competition
in your studies. Here you make your
own decisions as to the use of your
time, and ultimately, of your life
Dr. Houston also pointed out,
"Many college students find them-
selves confused by religious prob-
lems." He said that this experience,
common to most college students,
calls for "clear thinking and con-
He suggested, however, that th%
students take their time in reaching
conclusions. He said, "I would sug-
gest that you do not conclude too
quickly that your home environment
is out of date ... at the age fo
eighteen most of us see our fathers
as incredibly stupid and outdated.
By the time we are thirty our fa-
thers have suddenly acquired an un-
expected amount of wisdom."
Dr. Houston warned that individ-
ual superiority could no longer be
taken for granted, since the stan-
dard of academic performance ex-
pected is a good deal more severe
than in high school.
The president said, "I believe you
will find all of Rice friendly, if you
show yourselves friendly and cheer-
ful in turn."
Dr. Houston emphasized the Rice
traditions of beautiful buildings and
pointed out that the freshmen that
they would be the first class to use
the new Fondren Library and the
Finally, Dr. Houston outlined
three characteristics of an educated
person. The first quality is "respect
for truth. This apparently obvious
quality seems to be less widespread
than one would expect ... on every
side we hear misrepresentation and
Second is "a sense of direction."
Dr. Houston emphasized the need for
"a set of values in accordance with
which dceisions can be made. Such
a set of values must be flexible, for
conditions may change . . . but life
cannot be purposeful and useful and
at the same time, random.
"The third mark of an educated
person is the ability to act intelli-
gently." Dr. Houston quoted a pas-
sage from an article by Anne Mor-
row Lindbergh to the effect that
Americans have special ability'to act
intelligently on the information
which they possess.
"The Loved One"
Burial Habits of Americans Satirized
By English Novelist Evelyn Waugh
By Robert Mcllhenny
Unless one's relatives or close friends should be involved, death and
burial have become things of amusement and the dead are the butts of
many jokes. The American public has suddenly become conscious of
the "services rendered" the defenseless corpses of their "Loved Ones."
The cry was picked up by "Life" and quite by coincidnce a recent movie
travelog devoted considerable time
to Forest Lawn Memorial-Park in
The cause of this sudden excite-
ment is an interestingly written,
easily read novel by the renowned
satirist Evenlyn Waugh entitled,
"The Loved One," and subtitled
"An Anglo-American Tragedy."
Just following the dedication page
the author has inserted a warning
to the reader which includes the
usual careful emphasis of fictitious
characters and scenes, but ends with
the dire note, . . This is a night-
mare and in parts, perhaps, some-
what gruesome. The squeamish
should return their copies to the
library or the bookstore unread."
While this warning may be a lit-
tle stronger than necessary there
certainly are places where the weak-
kneed might become a little weaker.
The rather cold-blooded disposal of
their mutual sweetheart by two of
the main characters at the end of
the book rates quite high in the
gruesome bracket. But as a whole
the novel treats a potentially mor-
bid subject with deceiving callous-
(Continued on Page 4)
Main at Richmond
Wayside at Harrisburg
TELEPHONE YOUR ORDER FOR
The Bokay Shop
2406 Rice Boulevard
Let our Flowers Speak for You
City-Wide Delivery" L-4466
"I Love You So
Much It Hurts Me---"
By Tempo Howse
"The heart of American culture"—that's hill-
billy music to you. You sneer? But have you
delved deep into the realms of American history
and folklore? Do you feel the pulse of this great
nation throbbing in such popular ditties as "Mix-
master, Rootie Tootie," or "Under a Haystack in
the Meadow" ?
Why do people, educated yet, groan when a
classic such as "Tennessee Waltz" comes over a
radio or juke box ? They don't know. Call it
habit, call it inability to appreciate art, call it any-
thing you like-—but it's chiefly ignorance of the
beauty of our nation's heritage: the folk song.
The tunes are simple, the words sincere, the
sentiment heartfelt. Take such gems as "Wreck on
the Highway," "Mother Isn't Dead, She's Only
Sleeping," "Precious Jewel," and "Unloved and Un-
claimed." Our friends of the upper (in suotations)
world are convulsed with laughter as their morbid
wits go to work on such music as they consider
belonging to the lowland peasants and unwashed
masses. Contrast these with the tunes played in
smoky bars, with liquor flowing freely; these love-
lorn lyrics drip with passion or they represent the
completely foolish side of our nature, for example
"Bumpo, Bumpo, Bumpo, I fell off the camel's
Humpo," or "You Made Me Love You, now take
that shotgun out of my ribs," by Harry (he's got
Grable, he doesn't need the music) James, or "I'm
looking under a four leaf clover, how did I ever
get so low?" by Guy Lumberjack and his Royal
Log Cabin Syrup Boys.
But the true way of life—the life led by our
sturdy ancestors—is it to be forever lost? Every
day millions of recordings of the nonsense of pop-
ular music are sold to, the masses from the bobby-
soxers to Grandma. And in two weeks, they're
out of date. But the classics of the hillbilly world
are forever new, forever enjoyed by the true lovers
of the American way of life. As for those who
don't appreciate this, the root of our American heri-
tage, they should be termed insensible clods, or sent
off to the salt mines of northern Siberia to chip
salt to the tune of "I came here to chip for Joe"
played in the best hillbilly fashion by Dmitriofich
Schostakovichinski and his Roshian Mink Trappers.
Economics/ Dogpatch Style
Time magazine recently voiced the sentiment
of all literate Americans, when they noted the
uneasiness with which the American public was
watching the impact of Shmoos upon the economic
lives of Americans as seen in A1 Capp's "Li'l Abner."
And there is indeed much to be said for this
viewpoint. American economic life would be sadly
disrupted. However, when one considers the prob-
able effects of Shmoos upon America, it is impos-
sible 'to separate the economic, political, and the
cultural aspects of life. Though the free enterprise
system, and for that matter, the socialistic, com-
munistic, and fascistic systems of economics, would
be sadly outmoded by the Shmooistic economic prac-
tices, it cannot be doubted that the deep impact of
Shmoos upon American cultural life would more
than outweigh troubles of temporary dislocation of
our political and economic systems.
Fear-mongers who cry desperately of the con-
fusion and chaos that Shmooism would inflict upon
the average individual, fail to take into considera-
tion the big increase of fepare time, to be devoted
to the finer things of life that the average individ-
ual would now be blessed with.
No doubt, church attendance would triple. What
with all worries gone, men would naturally turn to
the things of the spirit. The sale of good books
would soar immediately and, best of all, the souls
of the millions ofe individuals of Amricans would
at long last begin the upsurge of true, inner, in-
dividual civilization that is our destiny. In other
words, millions of people would discover the music
of poetry and the poetry of music. The greatest
blessing of the Shmoos would be the forced dis-
appearance of all hillbilly music, a vice promoted
by the capitalists to keep the masses constantly
aflame with inner conflict. The common, the vul-
gar, the trite, would soon disappear from American
life and all would be beauty where there hed only
been the dark blots of men's souls.
At last dawns the brave new world Onward 1
Upward! Into the future! We have nothing to fear
with Shmoos at^eur side! To each other we pledge
our lives, our fortunes, and our Shmoos!
Here’s what’s next.
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The Rice Thresher (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 36, No. 2, Ed. 1 Wednesday, September 22, 1948, newspaper, September 22, 1948; Houston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth230757/m1/2/: accessed May 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Rice University Woodson Research Center.