An Exercise in Futility?

I often wonder why I couldn’t be interested in blogging about something with more mass appeal than the history of fraternities and sororities. Convincing members of GLOs that is important to know the history of their own GLO as well as other organizations is not an easy task. After all, the world is a different place than it was even ten years ago and talking about the 1800s and 1900s is akin to droning on about the prehistoric world. Furthermore, most of people I write about are d-e-a-d and have been for decades. Discussing GLOs with those who are not members and have a definite opinion/dislike/disdain about GLOs is an exercise in futility.


(Courtesy of the Student Life and Culture Archives, Wilson Heller Collection)

(Courtesy of the Student Life and Culture Archives, Wilson Heller Collection)


I’m an introvert although I can manage well among people when I must. There are days when I seriously consider becoming a recluse, but my cat allergy puts a crimp on that thought. Dogs are just too demanding. At the memorial service I attended on Saturday, someone came up to me and said, “You’re the dog walker!” “Yes, I am,” was my reply, because walking our two dogs is what I do. Researching and writing about GLOs is what I truly love to do. While I’ve considered closing this blog and finding something more lucrative, say selling real estate, I keep coming across items that need to be shared. 

Exhibit A – The men of Beta Theta Pi at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln set up a go-fund account for their former housefather, Erv Williams.

Exhibit B –  Last year, I wrote about Mimi Baird, an alumna initiate of Pi Beta Phi, who wrote about a father she barely knew ( The movie rights to her book, He Wanted the Moon: The Madness and Medical Genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and His Daughter’s Quest to Know Him, have been purchased by Brad Pitt. Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Kushner will be working on the screen adaptation. Dr. Perry Baird, the subject of the book, was a member of Alpha Tau Omega. The Variety articles summed up his life very well, “Baird was a rising medical star in the late ’20s and ’30s who researched the biochemical root of manic depression, just as he began to suffer from it himself. By the time the results of his groundbreaking experiments were published, he had been institutionalized multiple times and he had become estranged from his family. He later received a lobotomy and died from a seizure.”

Exhibit C – Nu Alpha Kappa, a Latino-based fraternity was established on February 26, 1988 at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Tony Arreola, one of the founders, recently donated $100,000 to the NAK National Alumni Association’s Scholarship Fund. On the Nu Alpha Kappa facebook pages, Arreola is quoted, “Nu Alpha Kappa and my college experience at Cal Poly have given me back so much over the years…The Arreola Family Award is my way of paying it forward by helping NAK brothers graduate from college.”

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