Sunday, April 15, 2018

Men of the Skull Chapter 32: Scavenger

This chapter is about another "game."  This was definitely one of the tamest games, and, I think, one of the most fun.

In this one, the brotherhood (Hood) split into smaller groups to carry on a tradition.  For example, if a pledge was selected to be Captain America, he would go with brothers who had also been Captain America.  And so forth.  There was a sense of pride in those groups.

The brothers often remembered their Scavenger fondly, and laughed about it long after graduation.

My last semester there, Captain America was arrested and charged with "desecrating a flag."  I think the Hood paid the fine.

As a Transgender woman who was at that time denying my Truth to myself, as well as the world, the one task sort of stung.  What if I had been selected to be "the Girl?"

First off, the whole exercise was sexist as hell, AND hazing.  But those brothers went to a sorority floor in the dorms (PSU did not and still does not have sorority houses) where the sisters of that sorority joined in the fun.  It was a way of meeting many people at once (and most of them women.)  I have no idea what the sorority girls thought of the exercise, but I'm told they had a LOT of fun with it.

Would that experience have "broken the seal" so to speak, as Halloween 2008 did decades later? 

I'll never know.  But that said, that was the ONLY times I ever envied a pledge- "Scavenger."


Chapter 32: Scavenger
Sunday, December 7, 1986 Reagan Says ‘Mistakes’ Made
“Scavenger Hunt!”  Ernie the Iota said. 
            “And like all games at Skull House, there are a few rules!”  Ernie said.
            “A FEW RULES!” the brothers leaned in to shout into the pledges ears.
            “First rule: No talking!”  Ernie shouted.
            “NO TALKING!”
            “Second rule!  Stand and wait until you are called!”

            Each pledge was taken by a group of guys to a different part of the house.

            I sat in with the group back in the TV room.  Maple had a book of patriotic songs, a case of beer, and a bottle.  We all did shots but Steel, the pledge, most of all.  Maple talked about love of country, about being proud to be an American, and we sang patriotic songs.  After twenty minutes, Steel was given his name: Captain America.  His mission was to put on his costume (an American flag worn as a cape) and spread the Patriotic gospel of America at three different restaurants by jumping on a table and rousing the crowd to song.
            One brother would be at each of the first two locations.  The rest of the people who drank with Captain America (all of whom except me were former Captain Americas) waited at the last location: Roy Rogers on College Ave.
            So off Steel went- drunk and full of patriotism.  We went to Roy’s to wait.  Other brothers joined us until there were four of us in a large booth drinking cokes.  Now, Roy’s was very quiet as people were doing homework and studying.  Pretty much on schedule, this big dude wearing a torn blue muscle shirt and an American flag cape burst through the door and jumped up on the only empty table in the place (coincidentally right next to us.)
From Friday, December 5, 1986 Collegian

            “May I have your att-ten-attention!  Who here is proud to be a fuckin’ Ammmmmmerican?” he shouted.
            Two Asian students near him looked at each other, confused.
            “I said- who is proud to be a fuckin’ Amm- merican?”
            A small cheer.  The brothers cheered the loudest.
            “If you’re a proud Amerrrrican, then prove it by, by, by singing with me!”  He staggered and almost fell off the table.  We all surrounded his table to cheer him on and to catch him if he fell.
            “God bless Uh-mere-ca!  Land that I luvvvv!”
            We encouraged everyone to sing and many did.
            Steel finished the song, jumped off the table, and ran heroically toward the back entrance.  The brothers and I followed, cheering.
            Back at the house, several of the pledges had returned from their missions.  They were in their various rooms, isolated.  When the last of them returned, the Hood reassembled in the foyer and the siren sounded.  The pledges emerged from wherever they were.  You could tell some of them thought it was all funny.  Their laughter echoed down the steps as they met.  Well it WAS funny!

            Pledge one was assigned to find a used tampon.  A fresh one.

            Two was taken to the Tri Delt floor, where the girls gave him a makeover, a dress, shoes, and did his hair.  He was then to find two handfuls of tuna salad.  The tuna salad oozed between his fingers.

            Three smelled very bad.  He coated himself with limburger cheese and rolled around in some dumpsters.

            Four was Captain America, smiling drunkenly.
            Five stood dressed in a black graduation robe.  When spoken to, he responded only with “Rhe-ee-ee.”  He looked and smelled high as a kite.  Several brothers also wore black robes and giggled to each other.
            “Did you enjoy that game?”  Brother File asked the lined up pledges.
            “Sir yes sir!” “Rhe-ee-ee!” 
            The Hood said quietly, but getting louder as the requests went on.
            Their Iota told the pledges to sit, which they did.
            “Who wants to go first?”  Ernie asked them.
            “Sir, we all do sir!”  “Rhe-ee-ee!” 
            “Number one!”  Ernie said.  He was sitting above them up on the Iota stand.
            “Um, well I had…” Number one said.
            “Stand up you fuck!”
                                                “Stand up!”
                                    “What’s your fuckin’ problem?”
            He stood.
            “I, um, had to find a used tampon.  My girlfriend isn’t on the rag but I asked her is anyone on her dorm floor was.  There were a couple and she helped me um get one.”
            “Boring!” someone shouted.
            “Anyone catch you?”  Brother File asked.
            “Some chick walked into the girl’s bathroom while we were there but my girlfriend pretended that she was helping me cuz I was pukin’.  Then we quickly left.”
            “Show us the tampon!”
            He held it up like it was the Golden Fleece or the Holy Grail.  It was red and gross.
            “Lick it!”
                                    “Lick it!”
                                                                                    “Lick it!”
                        “Lick it!”
            Pledge One licked it.
            “Ohh fuckin’ rude!”
                        “Shit man!”
            “Number two!” the Iota said.  One sat down.  Two had a hard time standing in his heels.  He was totally smashed.
            “She’s hot!”
                                                            “Show us your tits!”
            “I, um,went to the Tri Delt floor where they uhhh did thhhis to me,” Two said.
            “Is that all?” 
            “Ummmm yeah,” Two said.
            “Did you have to get something?”
            Two held out his hands and showed the tuna salad which by now had oozed all over his hands and forearms.
            I had, had, had to go to Bubbas (a local sandwich chain, now long gone) drrressed like this and ask fffor tuna salad.  Guy looked at me really funny.  I thought he was goona call the cops.”
            “Probably wanted a date.”
                                    “Who wouldn’t?”
            “Did he call the cops?”  King asked.
            “N-n-no,” Two said.
            “Pose for us!”
                                    “Show us your tits!”
            Two posed, then fell over.
            “Three!”  Ernie said.
            Three stood.  “I…”
            “Oh God you fuckin’ stink!”
                                    “You smell like VD’s ass!”
                        “Fuck you!”
            “Four!”  Ernie said.
            Steel stood, barely, and told his story.
            “Did you enjoy yourself?” King asked.
            “What are the objects?” Saint asked.
            “Rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee rhe-ee-ee.”
            The brothers laughed their asses off.
            The siren sounded just a little, and the pledges turned and bunched up under the Iota stand to look up at their Iota.
            “Did you have fun?” Ernie asked.
            “Sir yes sir!” “Rhe-ee-ee!”
            “Do you want to do it again?”
            “Sir yes sir!” “Rhe-ee-ee!”
            The pledges around Three tried to edge away from him.
            “Get out of here guys.  Shower if you need it,” Ernie said.
            Off they went, back up to the Pledge room.  Three was given new pants and a shirt for the night.  Two was helped into the shower.  He ate most of the tuna salad.  The rest was in One’s hair.
            Five disappeared again with the Rhee-ee-ee’s.
            For the rest of us?  Just another night at Skull.


  1. I actually have that mug shown in the McLanahan's ad. It's in a box somewhere. I think.

    1. I do too. It's on a shelf here in the apartment. :)