What would college life be without some craziness to add a bit of variety and spice to one’s academic endeavors?
For me, it was the three semesters I spent at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale—in 1980 and again in 1983. Although I didn’t know it at the time when I first started attending classes in the summer of 1980, SIU had a reputation for being one of the top party schools in the nation. Not that it would have made any difference when it came time to choosing a university to attend when I got out of the Air Force in May 1980, but I most certainly would enjoy that so-called party school reputation to the fullest. I might have been a film major, but what I really majored in was having a good time.
I might have only attended SIU for three semesters, but I packed in a lot of memories to last me a lifetime. I also got to meet some really cool people like Paul Collin who I was able to track down a few years ago and now we stay in touch quite regularly.
I first met Paul in the autumn of 1980 when we both were living in Freeman Hall, an off-campus dorm not far from the university and, interestingly enough not far from, believe it or not, Beveridge Street where there was always one party or another happening on the weekends.
Freeman Hall was one bizarre, wild place to live. Paul lived next door to me on the ground floor, which was where most of the zaniness happened. It was your typical off-campus dorm where your die-hard party animals were usually on the first floor. Maybe that is why some people in Freeman Hall often called the ground floor the zoo. The weekends got pretty wild.
Paul was one of the actors in my first student film, which was pretty lame when I think about it now. In the movie, which also starred Miles, one of my suite mates, Paul pushed Miles around in a shopping cart. I swear after I finished the film I kept on seeing shopping carts everywhere. If I am not mistaken, one day someone had rolled one up to my dorm room. I have often wondered if Paul had done that.