Tuesday, December 6, 1983
The Michigan Dail'
Why students look down around the
By Mike Buhler
Having been on campus for so long
gives me a unique perspective on trend.
You see, I've noticed lately; albeit
gradually, that when walking around
the University,. the majority of people
look down. It is found much more
frequently in underclassmen than in
professors, and the only group that
seems to defy this trend are the girls of
certain sororities, who look for
everyone they know. And if you walk to
class with one, you'll find they know
nearly everyone. And it becomes
noticeable that they are the only ones
looking up, or rather straight ahead, as
those addressed are usually taken by
surprise, as they were looking down.
Now several of you will say that I
don't know what I'm talking about, that
there is no perceivable difference in the
number of people with eyes cast down,
wandering the campus.
NOT SO! Because those of you who
were here four or five football seasons
ago will not recall posters taped to the
Diag. The prime spot used to be five
feet off the ground, on kiosks and the
stairwells. Only the RC Players and
Zuga cultists wrote any messages on
It probably started with the rape
awareness campaign of 1980, and
students began striving for information
on the way to class. Anyway, what
provoked the downcast eyes? And
therefore do we need the kiosks
As to the kiosks, we're stuck with
them, because they cover up the steam
tunnel access holes; or so we have been
told during orientation.
MAYBE IT was the law providing for
barrier free design that started
everyone looking down. Those ramps
are sure a lot easier to negotiate than
curbs. It could have been the rape
signs, but those were soon covered with
Ah, snow! That's my theory. That,
and the burning of the Economics
Building in 1981. (By the way, who is
the 'idiot who covered up the Econ.
Building with trees in the area picture
of campus in the Student Directory,
which at a buck isway overpriced?).'
It is easy to remember the smell as
the fire-riddled remnants rotted in the
late January sun. But surrounding the
tribute to arson was ice. So as everyone
negotiated around the Grad and Ugly
(sic) they had to look down to avoid an
embarassing slip and fall. The in-
coming freshmen caught on to the trend
as only freshmen do.
SO YOU ARE not happy with that ex-
planation? Let's try another.
Most of the University is from
Michigan. Many Michiganders ski.
When skiing on water, we squint and
smile, looking forward into the
mosquitos, horse flies, and boat spray
only out of neccessity of balance. When
we ski on snow, we don eye protection,
allowing us to ski forward without fear
of something lashing us in the eye.
But at the University, goggles are
out. Ray Bans, and more particularly
Vuarnets, are in. In wearing normal
glasses, an extended downward tilt of
the head will cause the glasses to slide
off the ears and nose. Those who wear
conventional sunglass to class
habitually know this to be true, and thus
look up. But the Ray Bans come equip-
ped with these ear-grapplers, allowing
one to look down.
THE MAKERS of Vuarnet were so
thoughtful as to supply additional
protection in the form of a piece of
string, to hold 'the glasses around the
neck, should the ear-grapplers fail.
By now, most of you will have seen
through this argument, as it pertains to
my snow theory in the preceeding
paragraph, because if the head is tilted
down, the wind and snow can find their
way over the tops.of your glasses and
into the eyes, thus eradicating thatT
But again, you've forgotten
something. Alright, so I didn't come
right out and say it the first time you
forgot something (the skiing theory),
but I've~said it now.. What has escaped
your attention is that important item of
dress, the "M" painter's hat.
SAID HAT has a small visor, which
corrects the wind problem. So you see,
what really happened was that students
like yourself got tired of fighting the
wind and snow with your eyes directly,
and devised a way to combat this. You
out-of-staters; stupid enough to leave
your sunny and warm states of the
South, will soon enough learn about the
Now the old chicken and egg question
comes into play. At this point you may
wonder, "Which came first, this writer,
or the question?" Maybe some other
time, along with Evacuation Day, I'll
answer that. You see, the caps really
, Long ago, the venerable Don Canham
rented the Michigan Stadium to our
adopted school, Slippery Rock. SR was
to take on'Shippensburg State - their
equivalent of OSU, I imagine. It was
also a neat way to get rid of Band Day.
Don't ask. Every football-going
college student has some form of
clothing in his school's colors, if not
some form of insignia paraphernalia.
One of Slippery Rock's colors is green;
that year, we were playing both MSU
and Notre Dame. So green clothing in
Michigan Stadium was out.
But those dyed-in-the-wool en-
treprenuers, the hawkers outside the
stadium, those not selling tickets,
devised something to get around the
color problem, the SR insignia
problem, and the yet-to-be-born wind-
and-snow-in-the-eyes problem by
selling a, painter's hat with a Slippery
Rock message emblazoned on it.
So Don Canham caused us to look
down, like we do after a loss to Iowa.
Buhler, an LSA senior, is an oc-
casional contributor to the Opinion
Daily Photo by TOD WOOLF
Downcast eyes are popping up all around campus.. But why! To avoid
variousibucket charity drives? To keep the rain or snow out of your eyes
Maybe it's Don Canham's fault.
Edie mdany Micig
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan
Vol. XCIV-No. 74
420 Moynard St.
Ann Arbor, M! 48109
I Editorials represent a majority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board
8 reasons to leave Lebanon
E LIE IVEDAWAR, a 44-year-old
Lebanese man, said it best:
"What are you Americans doing here?
What is everyone in the multinational
force doing here--the Italians, the
British, the French? You say you
come to help us. But look at this."
The "this" Mr. Medawar was
referring to was the wreckage of a
downed U.S. Navy light bomber that
crashed into a house in the town of
Junieh, injuring six people. The plane
had been on a retaliatory mission
against Syrian positions inside
The whole episode, with the recent
increase in the fighting in Lebanon
which left at least eight more
American troops dead, should force
President Reagan to answer Mr.
Medawar's questions. But Reagan has
no answer, just as he had no answer
when the troops were first put in
Lebanon more than 16 months ago, and
just as he had no answer after 239
Marines died in a truck bomb attack in
So with no reason for having the
troops in Lebanon, it is again time to
say they should come home.
The bombing raids were in
retaliation for increased Syrian at-
tacks on unarmed U.S. reconnaissance
jets and on U.S. naval and land
positions in the area. Certainly, the
administration can justify allowing its
troops to defend themselves, but that
does not give them a rationale for
maintaining their presence in the war-
ravaged land. U.S. troops simply are
not performing any useful tasks in
Lebanon. All they are doing is being
attacked, fighting back some, and
dying a lot.
Reagan has yet to face up to the fact
that Lebanon is not a coherent society.
It is not one nation that can be glued,
stitched, or held together by
As the death toll rises-it now stands
at at least 254 Americans-the
pressure on the president to get out of
Lebanon will probably increase. He is
in danger of sucking the United States
into a black hole of a conflict. Each
American death will make' it more dif-
ficult to pull out.
But he offers no reason to continue
exposing U.S. troops to shell fire.
Eight more dead say "let those alive
WE WANT STUDENT REPRESENTATION IN THE UtIVERSITY! WE FE
PAYING TO SEHERE AND WE WANT A PART IN THE ECISION-
MAKING PROCESS,,, ARE YOU .ISTENING TO M5? ,,
LETTERS TO THE DAILY:
Daily turning sarcasm into afad
z IE '
To the baily:
Is sarcasm going to be
denigrated to a fad? I hope not,
but your editorial on Theta Chi's
"Pimp and Prostitute" party
("Ladies [of the evening] night,"
Daily, December 2), took a big
step in that direction.
Your editorial came two and a
half weeks after the Wrong
Decade's sarcastic endorsement
of peace rallies and the Nuclear
Saints of America's sarcastic en-
dorsement of military research
Your sarcastic endorsement of
the campus fraternity's "much
needed.. . party" worked. You
said such witty things as, "Beach
parties are so passe that
presumably a more socially
relevant theme had to be found.
The pimp-prostitute relation cer-
tainly fills the ballet." Not only
was your style humorous, but it
also helped you avoid the socially
responsible aura that often
isolates newspapers from the
Editorial writing is serious
business. It challenges principles
of objectivity of the press close to
the heart of our nation. The Op-
Ed page is the one place where a
newspaper can let down its guard
of objective reporting and ex-
press its viewpoint on the news it
reports. I don't mean that
editorials should never be writ-
ten, or even that they shouldn't be
written humorously. I mean that
they should only be written for a
Unsigned editorials appearing on the left side of this page,
represent a majority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board.
Letters and columns represent the opinions of the individual
author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the attitudes or beliefs
of the Daily.
very good treason, and that
reason should be expressed
clearly and forcefully.
One must conclude that your
editorial had no viewpoint, or at
the very least, you mistakenly
feel that your ambiguous senten-
ces mean something.
In either case, your primary
motivation appears to be gaining
attention for yourselves with an
amusing but meaningless prank.
-John Shaw 4
by Berke Breathed
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