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October 12, 1975 - Image 5

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Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1975-10-12

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Sunday,' Qcitober 1 2 1975

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

edge Five

Sunday, October 12, 1975 THE MICHIGAN DAILY voge Five

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PROFILE

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A young Tarzan awaits a mythical beast

By KAREN FRANK ural as he can. He knows that
SPINK has been finding the Yeti fears civilized man, so
JIM SPN a enfnighe has become a true Tarzan
out the hard way that the without a tribe. u
mysterious Yeti monster, sup-'wtotarie
posedly a half-man, half-ape Sitting under the thick foliage
nocturnal creature, has apreal as shadows danced across him
penchant for privacy. son the garbage mound, Spink
Spnhasbernrcampiy. naadmitted he has not yet seen
Spink has been camping on a the Yeti, but is certain that he
shell Indian mound (actually an -or she-is out there. H b
ancient garbage dump) offshore ior' ht--iso ghther e He-
from Englewood, Florida for lieves that one night, while he
three months, trying to have a atte high on the branch of
faceto-aceconronttio wih a gumbo tree, the Yeti came up
face-to-face confrontation with a and sat down beside him, not
creature that science doesn't be-ang athngjs ehmn
liev exsts a onser hathassaying anything, just breathing
lieve exists, a monster that has quietly. "There's no doubt in my
been diligently pursued for mind that he was in the tree
years, not only in Florida, but with me," Spink said, squinting
in such remote places as Tibet, thoughtfully. "I could see this
where it is known as the Abom- big, hairy shape and the glowing,
inable Snowman. hot pink eyes. I sat very still,
Among the other names used hoping not to scare him away,
to designate the creature are but of, course I did."
Bigfoot, Yeti,' Sasquatch and
Skunk Ape, the latter a name In then meantime, Spink has
Floridians have given it be- been doing a nutritional study of
cause of its peculiar smell. The the Yeti to find out what it eats.
Florida Yeti has been described He goes around the mound gath-
as smelling like rotten eggs, ering samples of feces to see
skunk, moldy cheese, goat and what might be passing through
burnt sulphur. the Yeti's body. Carefully, Spink
Jim Spink, the Yeti hunter, weighs the samples on his gram
doesn't smell too good himself. scale and records it in a log. He
To be as inconspicuous as pos- examines it under a dime-store
sible to the Yeti, Spink has not microscope (he can't afford a
had a bath or shower in three good one), snaps a picture with
months. He has been camping his cheap camera, and pokes
on the Indian garbage dump for around in it to see what's there.
more than 90 days without bene- Spink is desperate to have an
fit of running water, electricity, aminokaciddtest run on a fresh
or the simplest amenities to sample to see if the feces come
make life comfortable. "I'm from a man or an animal or
trying to live like the Yeti," something in between - like a
said Spink, his mouth barely Yeti. Since this type of test must
visible through a mass of red be done within 24 hours to be
beard. "What I'm hoping for is accurate, Spink faces an acute
a confrontation and the estab- problem of logistics. He is 10
lishment of some kind of rap- miles from civilization and must
port. I want it to come into my get there by rowboat, hop into
tent and sit and let me have a his car on shore and drive sev-
look at it." eral miles to a laboratory. But
when he found a promising sam-
TIHUS FAR, both man and all ple after he had been looking
existing universal powers for more than two months, Spink
seem to be in cahoots to thwart was ecstatic. "It was too big to
Spink's search. His body is have come from a raccoon or.
welted with mosquito bites, his an owl," he recalled excitedly.
fingernails and toenails are "I've measured too many owl
black, and smears of dirt streak and raccoon samples to know.
his white body. He runs around There it was, a big sample with
stark naked, trying to be as nat- a feather in it. I knew I had
Behavior Mod: Poten

found conclusive proof of thee
Yeti."
So, down off the garbage
dump he flew, tearing through
the thick foliage, wearing a dis-
reputable pair of torn-off yel-
low and green pants for his ven-
ture back to civilization. He
hopped in his boat and rowed
furiously to shore with his pre-
cious sample. The laboratory
was closed.

makes," he said. "It's cheap,
just like everything else I've
got. Nothing works, but what
the hell, research goes on. Any-
how, I managed to capture the
Yeti on tape and run it into town
to.a woman who is an expert on
raccoons. I wanted to prove that
it wasn't a raccoon. The rac-
coons here don't make any
noise. If they did, Losianthropus
would eat them. It was really
L ni nhrn~ imiin ai ar

"It was devastating," Spink L iimitating a Lc
recalled. "You go through all coon. He was trying to lure them
this to do research and what do out."
you get for it? Nothing. I finally ECENTLY, two treasure
hung the feces on the door in a
plastic bag and left. I rowed hunters shot a rattlesnake
back over there about a week and gave the carcass to Spink
later and they told me it wasafter skinning it. He roasted it
from an owl. Now, I ask you over an open fire and had a
what owl eats other owls? There feast. It was one of the high;
were FEATHERS in it!" points of his grueling ordeal as
.' he watches ceaselessly for the
SPINK IS disdainful of the dis- Yeti, trying to match with not
believers in the scientific only with Losianthropus but
community, and his own exper- with the hundreds of wily rac-
iences with the Yeti - albeit acoons that steal his bait. "The
from a distance - have con- raccoons are a terrible prob-
vinced him of the righteousness lem," Spink said, wrinkling his
of his quest. Now, after months forehead and squinting to exer-
of living like he supposes the cise his night vision. "I was
Yeti lives, he identifies with how drying some fiddler crabs on my
the Yeti feels and thinks. "I've tent to attract the Yeti. That
given him a name," Spink said, was one of the worst mistakes I
hunkering in his usual position ever made. The raccoons in-
on the mound. "I call him Losi- vaded my camp that night by
anthropus Erectus/Sapien. Itj the thousands. They were all=
e Los over the tent, climbing up the
Stands Erect and Who is Wise poles, getting into my supplies.
and Discerning." If I live to be a thousand, I'll
and isernd i n innever see that many raccoons
So wise and discerning, i together."
fact, that people who have been
searching for him around the Some of Spink's mishaps are
world since the late 1800's have humorous, and he realizes deep1
found absolutely no proof that in his heart that Losianthropus
the creature exists. Once, a is probably watching him from
group of scientists were abso- the bush and laughing at his
lutely euphoric when they dis- troubles. "I can just see Losi-
covered the "scalp" of a Yeti anthropus hunkering out therel
in a native's hut. They bought in the shadows watching me and
the scalp for a lot of money and making fun of me," Spink said,
brought it back to civilization twirling his beard. "He watches
for testing. It turned out to be me cut wood and he laughs and
the fur from the hump of a yak. says to himself, 'Ha! That crazy
Spink has suffered similar set- kid. I dont have to cut -wood.'
backs.I'm sure he almost wet his
"hac. ybritches laughing at me the
"I have a tiny cassette tape night the raccoons came in."
recorder so that I can try tonOe raon
capture the sounds that the Yeti One reason Spink is doing this
research is to get credit for ex-
pository writing from Miami-
r Dade Junior- College, where he

said. "Who needs money? I
don't want fame or fortune. I
just want to live and try to solve
some of the mysteries of man
and of myself."
To that end, he has been us-
ing the long, lonely nights to
study celestial navigation "It
doesn't work," he said. "There
isn't any horizon out here. Noth-
ing I do seems to work. There's
always a problem. You see why
I get frustrated."
h[ARDLY anyone ever stum-
bles across Spink, giving
him long periods when he can
contemplate and dwell on the
mysteries of, life. He does just
that. "I sit out here and look
at the universe and realize what
a tiny, unimportant part man is
,of it," he sid thoughtfully
"Then I realize that if one man
died the whole universe ceases
to exist for him, so man is the
whole universe. You ask me
what I've learned?" He
shrugged expansively. "Who
knows?"
Karen Frank is a senior ma-
joring in English.

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31
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MON.-SAT.
]10 A .M.-6 P.M.
FRI. TILL 9 P.M.
"FINE //A\PORTED AND
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THE DEPARTMENT OF
ROMANCE LANGUAGES AND LITERATURE .
PRESENTS
The Hayward Keniston Lecture
"IN & OUT OF THE DICTIONARY"
by JOHN CIARDI

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Monday, Oct. 13-4:10 p.m

Music Lessons Available

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Rackham Amphitheater

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abusive manipulation

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(Continued from Page 3)
like a Big Brother operation,
with someone pulling strings
from behind the scenes. I've
tried to clarify some of the
controversy ,and show that pro-

him,"' says University Profes-
sor James Papsdorf.
But Papsdorf does advocate
behavior modification as a
technique in its most voluntrry
form - as a remedy for peo-

viding students with informa- i ple seeking an answer to smok-1
tion about their behavior is not ing or weight problems. "The
just manipulatory." most practical application is ap-
JANY BEHAVIORISTS con- plying behavior modification on
tend that the theory is not an individual basis - assistingi
just an information provider, people to change themselves."
but a basic fact of life. BUT LOCAL TEACHER and;
They claim stopping at a traf- psychiatrist Howard Wolo-
fic light is behavior modifica- witz, a long - avowed opponent
tion: Anytime a mother kisses of behavior modification, thinks
her child, that's behavior modi- that even in this most voluntary
fication. Grades are a form of I use of behavior modification
behavior modification. "Being I there are problems.
opposed to behavior mod," says "The basic problem is de-
one Washington D. C. behavior- pendency," says Wolowitz.
ist, "is like being opposed to "Most normal people feel that
the law of gravity." if they want to stop something
Behavior modification, they they can do it. But then a habit
say, only systemizes --renders comes along they cannot do
scientific - what happens all without or break. Someone,
the time on a random basis. comes along and says, 'You can-
but random events have a not do it for yourself and I have!
mech different effect on a per- an impersonal means of get-
son that an organized regime ting rid of it for you. A person
which manipulates those events. may be successful, but all that
There is nothing random, nor happens is that the dependency
is there anything voluntary is transferred to the method."
about a behavior modification "So what? many parents
program for incarcerated crimi- might ask. If I can break the
nals or unwitting school chil- habit, who cares how it's done?
dren. . And certainly behavior mod is'
"MANY OF THESE tech- 'worth considering if it's not go-
niques - many of these ing to cost as much as psycho-
applications of behavior mod in analysis..j
prison, or behavior mod in "But this question gets at a
school's - there's a philosophy critical, problem {of behavior
and the philosophy is 'Let's you mod, even in its purest sense.
and I see what we can do to1 Although it is functional, al-

ianiy
of minds'
though it is relatively inexpen-
sive, some people question whe-
ther a self-betrayal is involved
in the use of behavior modifica-
tion - whether using it means
giving up on feelings, or iden-
tity.
GAYS WOLOWITZ, "By using
it you're putting the re-,
sponsibility for yourself onto an
impersonal source. But you're
willingly betraying your own,
sense of determinacy and
will."
"Don't forget where this the-.
ory comes from. Behavorism,
comes from research on pigeans
pecking at a target. We have'
to ask -'Is that what human
choice is based on?"'

is enrolled, he says, mainly to
collect money from the GI. Bill.
"I retired three years ago," he
TODAY, 1-6 p.m.
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COURSE DESCRIPTION The course will examine the
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B) Command access to relevant sources of additional
information.
C) Be able to frame a well grounded, technically
sound public statement on a dimension of nuclear
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FACULTY Professor Marc Ross,Physics....
Professor Ann Larimore, Geoqraphv
Registration & Info:
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763-0176
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MICHIGANENSIAN
U-M's Year in Review

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7, 1975 at 8; OOpm

, mzTERA 7.7MICHI GAN UNIV EI/RSITY'S ~
BOWEN FIELDIJOUSE

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