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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

I knew that guy was sketchy!

Published: November 10, 2006
Section: Arts, Etc.

Alright, friends, we need to chill a bit;

I sure do, at least. So, with this installation of Horseradish, I present these two true (and all-too-true) stories of Samoan Sally and The Texas Rubber Round-Up. Make of em what you will.

I once had a girl, or should I say, she once had me
The Beatles

I met her while in American Samoa a few years ago, since I enjoy visiting out-of-the-way, quirky islands. This time I truly went over the edge, below the equator to the bottom-half of the world where typhoons and sink drains both flow clockwise. (It was the first thing I checked when I got to my room, and yes, its true;

they do.)

I was just relieved to be there after that eerie red-eye flight from Honolulu. Imagine: You fly all night over water and see nothing but blackness from your window. No light from a single island or passing ship illuminates the Pacifics consuming enormity. I tried to distract myself from the feeling of remoteness with the in-flight movie, which turned out to be The Perfect Storm. Oh, terrific

Polynesia can take the visitor by surprise. In Samoa, the word mahu doesnt refer explicitly to homosexuals, and it isnt pejorative;

it merely means a male who takes on a female identity. Some boys are simply raised as girls, by their parents choice or their own. Some decide to remain women when they grow up;

others return to the ranks of men.

The travel-guides had mentioned the custom, but I didnt think much of it until I realized I was seeing a few women who seemed, well, not quite women. Its no big deal there;

some anthropologists speculate that it arose from the need to have more women around to do traditional womens tasks. Others say the Samoans are just progressive. You decide.

There arent many tourists in American Samoa, so there wasnt much to eat. Ironically, it was a Mexican restaurant that had the best food in Pago Pago (pronounced pahn-go pahn-go), and it had an uncommonly friendly waitress. In fact, Sally was all over me, which for me is, as I said, uncommon. I think I went back to that place a few times that week;

must have been the tamales…

But what did Sally want from me? Was she just longing to escape and see the world? Did she also feel isolated on that far-off rock? Or did the abundance of mahus mean too few eligible men? Ill never know.

After some weeks back in the States, I placed a heck of an expensive call seven-thousand miles overseas. She was delighted Id actually called, and she promised to write back soon. She kept her promise, but I almost wish she hadnt

Dear Michael, it read. Then, a few pleasantries and thanks to our Heavenly Father for our good fortune. Such opening greetings are often seen in letters in the religiously devout South Pacific;

thats the missionaries great legacy. But then, she got straight to the point:

Please send me the following: A gold watch, a gold necklace, gold earrings, and a two-hundred dollar money-order. The reason is the occasion of my birthday!

See where this is going, folks? Actually, no. It just ends there.


Mama, dont let your babies grow up to be cowboys
Willie Nelson

Anyway, so these high-school kids down Texas-way had emselves a glow-in-the-dark condom orgy. I know its true;

I heard it from a friends sisters friend who was there (No, honest). Sort of a sketchy variation of Musical Chairs, I guess. The guys donned the aforementioned accessories in a dark room and the girls each chose a partner. Hell, maybe they each just picked their favorite color

So picture it: It begins as a pitch-black room with nothing visible but this colorful spectacle of bobbing latex. Then, as each lil cowgirl picks herself a lil cowboy, there commences a midnight rodeo the likes of which was never seen this side of the Brazos.

When this Lone Star bull rides almost done, the lights go on, and, there, as all the cowkids are suddenly revealed in their moment of Texas-style tryst, each gets to see, to their surprise and delight, whos just knocked up whom.

I think the idea was for this game of Musical Boys to go on a few more times in a kind of series of eliminations. But on this particular night, it didnt. You see, the moment was kind of spoiled when the lights went on after only the first round

Now, as our own ex-Hoot columnist Rafi Farber 05 used to say: Folks, I am NOT making this up: One of these poor gals had done done herself her very own brother! Oh, imagine the scene.

Man, what the heck was the point of todays piece anyway? None, really. I guess I just needed to get these two random stories from my sordid past off my chest. Yes, thats it;

that and lab reports. Alright;

I just wanted you to know that grad students really are sketchy after all.

Enjoy the weekend, partners. Careful with the Horseradish;

its hot.