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About The Hesperian / (Lincoln, Neb.) 1885-1899 | View Entire Issue (April 14, 1899)
LINCOLN, NEBRASKA, APRIL 14, 1899.
An Optimistic View.
The world is change, there is no death,
The good glides into better good,
The courage of a thousand years
Lives in the presents' hardihood.
The beBt of all we think and are
The future will unfold,
In higher thoughts and richer worth
And men of stancher mould;
For, lo, the shade of Herbert Bates,
Our ancient Prof, and saga-seer,
Decked in the brilliancy of Kline,
Still strides among us here.
Ohas. H. Root, in "Rhymes of a Gusher."
THE COLLEGE SMOKER.
Life at Columbia. A. S. Johnson Writes About It's
Columbia, too, has a graduate club, large in numbers, small
in enthusiasm. The bond of union among Columbia graduates
is naturally very weak, as we come from every corner of
America, and each pursue our own course. An artificial union
with the graduate club of Barnard serves only to emphasize the
loneliness of the Columbia graduate, since aside from a favor
ed few, nobody knows anybody. So, were it not for the cus
tom of having a man of note address the meeting, our club
would be as purely mythical as the U. of N. Athletic Associ
ation when no "scrap" is on hand. As it is, we go, we listen,
Man is, however, a gregarious animal. His social organism
cannot bo sustained by such diluted nourishment. We have
accordingly organized a "College Smoker." Every two weeks
we meet, we chat, smoke and drink beer, if we like, play bil
liards, if we can, and have some professor give us an in
Across the Boulevard about two squares from Columbia,
stands the College Tavern. The front half of it looks like
the mud houses we used to build beforo wo had learned
the art of making gabled roofs. This part looks as if it
yiight have served as a shelter iu the Battle of Harlem
Heights. The roar half of warped discolored boards, looks
much like a battered grocery box. As a concession to
metropolitan taste the tavern makes a pathetic effort to pro
sent a classic front, with four spindliug fluted columhs and
unsymmotrical gray pediment.
It is there where the student takes his hasty lunch of
pie and beer. It is there that the hard worked professor
moistens his throat on his way to the lecture room. And
there it is where the College Smoker holds its fortnightly
You go through a long barroom and ascend a flight of
stairs. On the second floor you find a wide low room, with
the uneven beams of the ceiling sagging down threateningly
in the middle. The gray plaster on the walls looks as if the
plasterer, instead of applying it with a trowel had taken
the soft cold mortar from the limy bucket, and slopped it
against the rough stones. On the rough tables you find plates
with cheese and crackers, and gravy bowls of Bull Durham
and cob pipes, and bundles of long black stogies, inviting to
enjoy who can.
Time was when a noisy crowd of graduates filled the hall so
full that the admission of one more the marginal man would
have precluded the possibility of further motion. Inverted
cones of smoke, with bases fused into a hazy mass, poised
tremuously over each head, and vibrated with the laughter and
the hubbub. White aproned waiters edged about, peering
through the smoke for the significant raisin of the fingers.
"Three beers," and bringing trays with big tumblers of foam
ing brown liquid.
But unfortunately, graduate affiairs always prosper inversily
with the square of their history. So last evening the room
was but sparsely occupied by a crowd that immediately divided
itself into two cliques. At a small table at one end of the
room was a group of three; the first with bridgcless nose, bald
head, forward turned ears; the second with watery eyes, un
combed hair, and head joinod to the shauldors without an in
termediary nock; the third with a head like a Hubbard squash.
Of course you have guessed (hat these are psychology students.
At the opposite end of the room are a half a dozen students
quaffing beer. All have whiskers; all talk loud and use quot
ionable English. That is the Political Science table.
The loss typical students attach themselves to these two
poles. For the classic graduates, the literature "posts," the
scientifs, the medics and the lawyers do not usually attend such
affairs. Either their own fields are sufficient to their needs, or
their gods are jealous gods, and do not allow their votaries to
listen to strange prophets. The philosophy students, however,
attend because they desire to know everything; the political
science students, because they desire to know something.
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