Saluki Marooned by Robert P. Rickman

Students: What Mom and Dad didn’t tell you about college.

Photo taken in Metropolis Illinois. The "S" on the front of the costume stands--of course--for SIU. CLICK on it to see the mild mannered reporter.

This is the "non-broadcasting related business" that I mentioned in the author section.   I would like to take a moment out of my busy crime busting schedule to fill in some of the gaps about what actually happened during the roaring 70's before I graduated from SIU with a degree in Radio and TV and became a super hero.

You see, I have recently talked with an SIU alum (another super hero) who revealed that he told his children what it was like during those days...mainly.  But he confessed that he didn't go into the exciting details.

So, in order to fill in the gaps, and avoid revealing the guilty parties,  while at the same time not allowing the facts to  get in the way of a good story... I have written a novel about what it was really like back then.

For example: I'm sure Mom and Dad didn't go into much detail about the colorful language we used.  In the excerpt from Saluki Marooned that follows, Peter Federson and his roommate, Harry Smykus, are walking across the SIU campus on a late Saturday afternoon in the spring of 1971:

 

Click here to read about these star crossed lovers.

Within twenty minutes, Harry and I were opposite the girls gym on the old campus.

"Hey Hare, wait up, look at this," I said, gesturing toward the fountain.

"Yeah, so what? A fountain. Yah want me to piss in it?"

"Yeah, go ahead. Do it right now. I'll watch out for ya."

"Bite me, Federson."

I had called his bluff, and now back to the topic.  "These two children are calledPaul and Virginia, and this fountain was given to the school as a gift from the class of 1887. It‘s been here ever since, and will be here forty years into the future."

"Neat, mannnnn."

"You know, Hare, before I started reading about this stuff, I didn‘t have the slightest idea of what the fountain or the university was all about. I think all students should go through an orientation course about this school, and come away with some school spirit."

"Oh, they got school spirit alright. They riot, get drunk, smoke dope."

Not this kind of school spirit, but CLICK the pennant anyway.

More "school spirit" awaited Peter and Harry that afternoon at 1910 American Tap, Jim's, the Club, the Golden Gauntlet, Shads...and the Carbondale City Jail.

Yes, many SIU students were profane, in your face, and colorful back then.

1980's Halloween. Same Strip, different decade. But those days are long gone.

And probably, had you lived back in our times...you would have been just like us.

 

 

                 Modern day Saluki spirit.                                Saluki spirit back then.

SIU Cheerleader Kristi Yamaoka suffered a concussion, a bruised lung, and a fractured neck. She got an early start on her recovery though. CLICK.

During the early 70's  Saluki Spirit meant dealing with the constant construction projects on campus (one student was killed by a crane collapse at the Faner construction site, another was killed by a train before the north overpass was built) participating, or avoiding the demonstrations and riots (numerous students were hospitalized for tear gas burns and other wounds after battles with the police and National Guard) adjusting to the constant tension on campus (one student jumped to her death from Nelly Tower,  another Radio and TV  student shot himself, and several students died from drug overdoses) and just...staying...in...school;  Some students to get an education, and other students to avoid the draft.  

Click for audio narration in Saluki Marooned.

 

 

 

It was Saluki spirit of different sort, but it was still Saluki Spirit.

And that is what Saluki Marooned is all about.

Click on one of the Brush Towers.

 

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