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The Stars and Stripes Forever!

 Happy Fourth of July! .2




Rare tape of JCD’s Williams mentor found!

“This man taught me everything I know. What a pleasure that this tape of our shared times has been found!” said JCD.


November 8, 2016, November 11, 2017: heart-stoppers !

Heart care in extreme winters prevent heart attack in cold

… Illustration from Reviews and Life Style Tips

Elephant or donkey, mammoth or cow, the animal world had palpitations on these days!

An illustration of Fake News, if I’ve ever seen one:

A 24 -24 tie. In this comment, our own DDF sums it up nicely …

David Dudley Field ’25 says:

Have two teams ever been so simultaneously disappointed by an outcome? Williams had the game well in hand, but then an Amherst comeback, including a pick-six and Patriot-esque two point conversion, robbed them of the victory. No wins for seven years now.

But Amherst is also hugely disappointed! They should have won and, if they had, they would be NESCAC champions now. The tie means that Trinity won the league.*

Does the football team do “The Walk” after a tie?**

* Nota bene: Trinity are the Bantams … while not a current or former Mammal, they are indeed Chordata Aves.

** In a comment under “Yard by Yard”, Ephs! reports “They Walked”


They Walked!


The Lying Press should be stopped by LAW!

Your personal experience, chest-wise?


Reed College Students … Agree? Disagree?

Reed Humanities students reject Steve Martin’s 1978 SNL ‘King Tut’. The background has been well-discussed here on Ephblog as it pertains to Williams.

I was 44 in 1978. Some readers may not have been quite toilet-trained. I found it funny both then and now. Of course, I was an Art History major (class of ’56) and used to white privilege being presented in ‘broadest aspect’

 I am interested in current readers opinions. Look through the story below to get the gist.

Agree?  Disagree?

NB  SNL’s first broadcast October 11, 1975 from Studio 8H at 30 Rock.


New bookstore complex “Rather pleasant …” says Peter Britton ’56

spring street bookstore… photo by Peter Britton ’56

“Rather pleasant, airy, two floors, good location. You might even like it. Here for the Hamilton game.” writes Peter in a brief note.

I stand by my view of the edifice and the college take-over of Spring Street. Now with a new Williams Inn approximately where the picnic table is, the transformation to a mall (if they add a roof up to the Congo Church intersection) is complete!

Will Lin-Manuel Miranda be starting for Hamilton?

My post on the new complex from June 13, 2017.


Williams Admissions and Academic Standards v The Ivies?



Recent statements in the popular press by a UofP alum* may call Ivy standards into question.

*  See comment 8


Some color for the gray columns of actuarial acumen …

berkshires_foliage_smFrom the Boston Globe …

The Mohawk Trail, Massachusetts: Oct. 6-9

Cambridge commuters may know Route 2 as a source of endless frustration and gridlock. But out in central and western Massachusetts, the highway becomes the Mohawk Trail, a 60-mile path through the Berkshires from Orange to Williamstown.

Photo credit


“Almost Like Praying” Bernstein/Sondheim ’50 hit joins Lin-Manuel Miranda as All-Star song for Puerto Rico.

sondheim-miranda-1507306370 ….  Getty Images/Forward Montage

 Hamilton” mastermind Lin-Manuel Miranda has collaborated with an all-star lineup of artists to release “Almost Like Praying,” a hurricane relief single in support of Puerto Rico. Proceeds from the song, which was released Friday morning, will go to the Hispanic Federation UNIDOS Disaster Relief Fund. In addition, YouTube will make a contribution to the organization.

Recorded in less than a week, “Almost Like Praying” features a wide spectrum of artists, including Gina Rodriguez, Gloria Estefan, Jennifer Lopez, Luis Fonsi, Marc Anthony, Rita Moreno, and many more. An accompanying video, available through the official Atlantic Records YouTube channel, features footage of Miranda traveling to New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Puerto Rico to record with each artist. With samples from Leonard Bernstein & Stephen Sondheim’s “Maria,” music and lyrics for the track were created by Miranda and include references to more than 70 municipalities in Puerto Rico.

Miranda, who tweeted that President Trump is “going straight to hell” for his response to the disaster in Puerto Rico, told USA Today, “I was very glad to have something to do while that was happening. I was hoping for an announcement of additional troops on the ground, additional aid. I read about it after. In the absence of that, we have to just keep focusing on our work.”     

       …    Variety  October 6, 2017


Preview of Coming Attractions …

Screen Shot 2017-10-05 at 5.40.37 PM                     Williams_seal

 In the spirit of Wikileaks, may I submit for avid readers a preview of what may be next on your favorite blog. The first column are the titles of ‘scheduled’ posts. The second are ‘drafts’ being worked on. All of the ‘scheduled’ are Dave’s. All of the ‘drafts’ are Dave’s with the exception of ‘no title’ and ‘College’s Sexual Assault Policy’

 I do this as a service to readers waiting for the next topic. I know Dave won’t mind given his own questionable use of materials

My fervent hope is that no one reads this blog except the disillusioned, the dyspeptic, and those given to the dissection of data.



Any response to Jordan Hampton ’87 email re input for new prexy search?

Screen Shot 2017-10-04 at 10.01.45 AM


Rather nice line drawing of campus landmarks.

I’ve attached my input beneath the fold.  Read more


Students: Consider the Spanish Major. Our hemisphere needs active participation in ecologic, economic, and social inputs and programs!

Map of Spanish speaking countries

From the Williams College Spanish Course listings:

Our graduates have gone on to secure prestigious Fulbright teaching and research grants in Latin America and Spain, and many have used their linguistic and cultural training as they pursue careers in fields including law, health care, journalism, labor and community organizing, education, and doctoral degrees in various fields.

This may be even more true today after the President’s speech in Puerto Rico, as fluent Spanish speakers grasped for the exact word:  el pendejo, el huevón, el pelotudo.


Marko Remec ’80 has new site-specific work at 93rd and Park …


The work, simply known as “Rayok” or “The Peep-show,” mocks and satirizes the anti-formalism campaign in the Soviet arts during the late-1940’s that sought to stifle any art that did not conform to the official Soviet cultural policy and resulted in a sustained campaign of persecution and criticism and toward many of the Soviet Union’s foremost composers including Shostakovich himself.  It was never publicly performed during Shostakovich’s lifetime.

Marko Remec ’80 is an investment banker-turned-artist. His experience may provide guidance and a lesson for new graduates and those about to graduate:


An old guy from ’56 gets the band back together …

Peter Britton ’56 has written lyrics and produced his own albums for many years …

A partial discography:

Peter has a tremendous interest in coal, the ocean, and the environment in general including the presence of the President and his effect on nature.

We meet every five years at reunion for three days of what might be, based on reading this blog, a by-gone haze of old-time school spirit and camaraderie.

An older note on Peter:




The Elks: Edifice Rex … (reissue of a reminiscence when the blog was more a place of easy-going writing and topics)

elks 3

Originally published Oct 11, 2009.

I was thinking as I am doing the series on the Houses of Williamstown, about other small towns and the outsize edifices of grandeur built to exude permanence, status, and a desire to go inside.

Of course, this is easy for me, I live in a small town.

And the answer is: The Elks! Small town belonging, particularly important when Sunday Blue laws made a private club the only place you could get a drink; before the lotteries when ditto for gambling; and in small towns, the only place the male burghers could go a couple of times a year for a ‘smoker’ with a stripper.

Membership soared until the seventies, when booze was suddenly available at Safeway, the states were sponsoring gambling instead of censoring it, and nudity was available everywhere including topless shoe-shine parlors.

And so we have on Main Streets across the Heartland, temples and lodges that parallel the houses on campi. Many, as you drive past, seem to be ‘for sale’ or have been converted into other uses.

Membership in Fraternal Orders named for animals or the job skills of construction are dwindling and their remaining members approaching their dotage.

Has small town America lost a way of life as well as Williams? And if so, does any one care except for aged Past Exalted Rulers?


“One word … Law” has replaced ‘plastics’ for “The Graduate”


… better call Saul to the White House!

In case you forgot my 18 May post and the July 11 post (Redux). In May it was thought that “Dick Swart jumps the shark. Again.”

And for that Williams link: Although fewer Class of ’17 grads went on to law school v Amherst *, there should be no lack of job opportunity. Perhaps DDF should rethink his advice.**

   * Source … EphBlog!

**  Source … Ephblog yet again!




Should this stamp be cancelled? Merely a question from a philatelic point-of-view …

Screen Shot 2017-09-20 at 5.38.51 PM

It is interesting to note that Williams students have been organizing a model UN at Mt Greylock through the Center for Learning in Action for any middle schoolers wanting to learn about MUN and international diplomacy. Read more about the skills two Ephs are offering middle-schoolers.


Further to ‘Panic’ post (below): the spatial context …

Screen Shot 2017-09-20 at 7.03.22 AM

Graffiti as a statement might be a bit more bold.



3063339508_154a99432a_b   Oneonta-Rain      J Seward Johnson*                                                       Mark Adamus

It has been since the 16th of June. This will be a welcome soaking to the 950 firefighters working on the 44, 000 acre blaze in the Columbia Gorge.

I am posting this with a specific reference to this fire warning on Williams campus safety:

Would that someone had instructed the 15 year old boy not to throw a firecracker into a tinder-dry 200 foot gorge.

* Mister Portland … “Allow me”.  Johnson bio here:



The Houses of Williamstown: Baxter Hall … (Reissue)

(This is the last post in a series of 16) This was originally posted 26 Nov, 2009. Sharp eyes may have noticed the disconnect between 14 and 16: namely Zeta Psi. The Zetes reissue was posted on May 20, 2017.


Final NA top
Continues under the fold Read more


The Houses of Williamstown: Theta Delta Chi … (Reissue)

(This is the 14th of a series of 16 posts). This was originally posted 18 Nov, 2009. Click COMMENTtto see the full article.
tdx Top copy
Article continues under the fold Read more


The Eagle Creek Fire: 10,000/ now 33,000 acres of the Columbia Gorge Scenic Area are in flames …

fire_stephen_datnoff_1_t670     photo Steve Datinoff, Hood River

… 5% contained as of noon 7 Sep, hikers have been rescued, towns are being evacuated, roads and the InterState are closed to all but emergency vehicles. The Eagle Creek/Indian Creek fire has crossed the Columbia River from Oregon into Washington.

The Columbia Gorge Scenic Area:


The need for knowledge in forest management is recognized at Williams:

The Williams College Center for Environmental Studies (CES) facilitates research and undergraduate teaching activities while preserving and monitoring forest resources, particularly through long-term ecological research.

If Ephs do not appreciate the beauty of purple mountains, then who does?

It has not rained since mid June. Ironically, this is a temperate rain forest. And the fire was started by an idiot with a firecracker!


The Houses of Williamstown: Sigma Phi … (Reissue)

(This is the 13th in a series of 16 posts) This was originally posted Nov 16, 2009. Click COMMENT to see the entire post


Sig Phi Top copy
Continues under the fold Read more


College to tear down Garfield House (former DU House) ???


A whisper from ‘Yup’ under the KA post just now:

 yup… says:

The college may tear down Garfield House (Former Delta Upsilon fraternity house) …


Good God, please this can’t be true! Can anyone shed light on this? The Horn dullness gets built and the DU House comes down??

FRANK … you are on the scene …

‘yup’ is not unknown and is a reliable source.


When a person embodies a nations heart …

Screen Shot 2017-08-31 at 5.35.12 PM





At the request of DDF …

 Narcissism through the ages: What happens when narcissists grow older?
Includes references to empathy



FastTimes_104PuxurzSean Penn in Fast Times at Ridgemont High . This 1982 movie was based on Claremont HS in San Diego, a few years before my daughter was Class  President.

Yes, this is another very thin Williams link to give you a shot at my summer reading list. I met Andre Dubus III at a book reading in Boston in May. He knocked me out. His reading was a torrent of words and images taking place at different times and locales yet all taking place in a space of five minutes in the narrative of the book. I had to read more.


I read four: two novels, a book of novellas, and a memoir. The first novel was his first big success,  House of Sand and Fog.

cover_townieThe memoir is Townie. It is an accounting of his growing up in Haverhill where his father, the writer Andre Bubus, is a college professor. It is dirty, gritty, violent, touching, and written in a language in which the truth is found with out embellishment other than the writers own self-searching. Townie was written after the other three. And in it are the backgrounds for happenings and characters in the first three books.

The truth he finds in this memoir is the same truth you see being developed in the first three books of fiction. 







The flimsy link:

Anthropology professor David Edwards and journalist Christopher Marcisz have teamed up this semester (2015) to teach a course about different ways of understanding the relationship between Williams College and Williamstown.

To prepare for their final projects, each of the 13 students—sophomores, juniors and seniors, some of them anthropology and sociology majors—will pitch several ideas about the intersection between the town and the college, just as they would to a magazine editor, and select the one with the most potential. They’ll spend the rest of the semester conducting research and interviews and then writing an anthropological study that reads like creative nonfiction.

All the profs really had to do was to assign Townie.




JCD is Right!* Hitler is a cliche …

Il Dunce

With the pardon of the sheriff, with the order to the military Re: transgenderpeople in the  service, I’d have slapped up a shot of Der Fuhrer faster than lightning. But JCD is right, I’ve been over-using Hitler as an easy allusion for Drumph and Fascism.

So here is a new simulacrum that I’ll use. It’s a little lighter with a touch of humor. Although the situations grow less and less humorous.

Thanks JCD!

          * see JCD comment, 3rd comment under ‘Very Nice People’ post **


**  Granted, this is a meta reference to Williams. However, one that may be familiar to constant readers.

Addenda items …

At David’s good suggestion to search harder for a Williams College reference, I am adding this more direct beat-back.

This article in the blog of Christian Thorne, Associate Professor of English on 27 February, 2017:

Mussolini’s government, unlike Hitler’s, did not attempt to monopolize the entire sphere of thought and culture. Historians are keen to point out that there was no Italian Gleichschaltung—no effort to bring everyone into line. Within certain parameters, independent intellectuals continued to publish in Italy, which means not that there were still socialists or communists or liberals expressing themselves freely in Florence and Rome—those people really were shut down—but that there remained an outer circle of freelance fascists, the half-fascists or the merely unenrolled, the shirts not of black, but of charcoal and onyx and taupe,

Added by DDF:


The Houses of Williamstown: St. Anthony Hall (Delta Psi) … (Reissue)

(The 12th in a series of 16 posts)   This post was originally made Nov 12, 2009. Click COMMENT to see full post
St A Top copy
Continues under the fold Read more


Grandparents of Student Make Gift of West African Art


Drs Carolyn and Eli Newberger have made a gift of their 340 object collection of art from the Ashanti, Bamana, Baule, Bobo, Dogon, Igbo, Mossi, Peul, Senufo, and Yoruba people.

“This generous gift greatly expands WCMA’s collection of African art and will be incredibly valuable not only in teaching but also in showing art that is politically, socially, and culturally relevant,” said Class of 1956 Director Christina Olsen. “ We are grateful to Carolyn and Eli for their vision and generosity.”

This is another recognition of the WCMA. Of particular interest to me personally is this description  of the museum: “A defining feature of this institution is its unique exhibition style; presenting art within its cultural and historical context to incite thought-provoking experiences.”

Isn’t this, after all, how art should be understood? And , in fact, isn’t this thought the basis for a liberal arts education?

JCD: Comment?


“This is just post-modern drivel. Art should be valued and displayed because it is beautiful. Museum directors are only amateurs in politics, sociology or cultural anthropology. Only in a world without standards of beauty would a dorky looking pot ever become a part of an art exhibit.”

10438ceabf502fa8174817ace186608clargerOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA



8 Students Chosen for the Expedition to the August 21 Solar Eclipse/ The view from Hood River …

Your first-hand reporter comments on the eclipse as he saw it.

I know the Williams expedition must have been in a better position than I was. Hood River is 60 miles due east of Portland on the Columbia River. I sat on the deck facing east and could see the sun.

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 10.56.16 AM

I would say that (as you can see by the map) by 10:20 am there was a hint of darkness, rather like the time for a sun-downer. I turned my chair due north. Buffy the wonder dog was disinterested. The neighbors cats, Atticus and Coco, stopped by for a stretch and a meow, but they always do. Birds seem to go about their business with no hint of retiring for the night. The river was placid, no wind, no kite surfers or paddle boarders. Snowy Mt Adams kept steady shadows over the Yakima Nation.

In a few minutes, the sun shine was bright again. If I were a Druid living in Hood River, I would be questioning my religion.

Hey, Just Now!

 A Trump speech actually with a beginning, middle, and end. I bring to your attention my prediction on 11 August:

 In one of those hidden in the comments statements that will probably not be read, this “Mark My Words” revelation I have just received while enjoying a Pimm’s Cup.

Trump will become a War President and as such will be able to put aside all the “follow the money” investigations being pursued by Special Investigator Mueller.

Well, Forget it!

The Phoenix display may set up the continuing positioning:

The President Who Is Preserving Our History And Heritage!

 Here are some other suggestions from The New Yorker:




the Houses of Williamstown: Psi Upsilon … (Reissue)

(This is the 11th in a series of 16 posts) Originally published October 2009.   Click CONTENT to see entire post
Psi u Top copy

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