The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, December 11, 1987, Image 2
Page 2/The Battalion/Friday, December 11, 1987
The curse of copiers and legal research
while doing legal
research, I discov
ered last week,
ranks right on up
there with root ca
nals as one of life’s
great joys. This
revelation came to
me at 1 a.m., as I
searching the fifth
floor of the library
for a legal book I
der they were heard. This probably
makes sense, because they don’t have to
print new ones all the time, but it also
means you can’t buy them without buy
ing an equally large and obnoxious set
of black and tan and red books that act
as a guide to the other obnoxious black
and tan and red books.
was convinced had
dropped off the edge of the planet.
Legal research itself is no fun. There
are all these books. Rows and rows and
rows of them. And they all look exactly
alike, except for such exciting titles as
Federal Reporter, Federal Reporter
2nd, Federal Supplement, etc. Rows
and rows and rows of obnoxious black
and tan and red books.
And to make things worse, you can’t
find anything in them. Because the
companies that print them had the in
genious idea to print the cases in the or-
And they take up just as much room.
So when you get tired of being confused
by the rows and rows and rows of case
books, just move down a little and you
can be confused by rows and rows and
rows of books that are supposed to help
you decipher the case books.
Of course, it’s impossible for any nor
mal human being to look anything up in
these guides, because the topics are in
dexed in Lawyerese. Fluent English-
speakers might as well give up. Or go to
the next set of obnoxious black and tan
and red books, called — Fm not kidding
— Words and Phrases. Rows and rows
and rows of them, all intended to take
your logical guess at what stuff should
be indexed under and tell you where, in
fact, you need to look.
That did it. When you have to have a
book just to tell you what Legal Mumbo-
Jumbo your subject is indexed under so
you can look in the index so you can
look up the cases — well, obviously the
system was created by a sadistic law pro
fessor looking to make his students’ lives
a living hell. It seems that way at 1 a.m.,
working was in use, so I headed back to
the fifth floor, thinking myself brilliant
for avoiding the wait.
But the fiend who created the legal
research system paled in comparison to
whoever’s in charge of making sure the
copiers in the library don’t work. Be
cause at 2:15 a.m., after finding the
cases I wanted out of the obnoxious
black and tan and red books, I went to
look for a copier.
Back up the elevator, juggling nickels
and books, I found the copiers on the
fifth floor. You guessed it — dead. I
went to the fourth floor. Dead. The
third floor. Dead. Two. Dead. One. The
guy using the machine had just broken
Struggling with six legal books, each
of them taller than I am, I headed for
the first floor to get change. The copiers
were strewn with the debris of a hard
night’s copying, and the guy at the re
serve desk advised me to get nickels be
cause the copiers were eating everything
There was only one possibility left.
With a lunatic gleam in our eyes, he and
I said, “Sixth floor!” and headed off on
the Quest for the Holy Xerox Machine.
Visions of paper jams, used-up toner
and used-up paper danced in my head.
Copier error lights swam in front of my
eyes. (It was, after all, getting quite late.)
to wait. And waited. And waited. Ner
vously we watched the level of blank pa
per shrink as he copied and copied and
copied. I kept thinking how cheaply and
quickly I could copy this stuff at Kinko's
if I could just get it past the evil magne
tic guards at the front of the library.
Finally it was my turn. I had six cases
to copy. The line behind me began to
grow. I made it through the first case,
25 pages. And the second, 28 pages,
The people in line began to growl
hurled mental curses at the goofballs
who refuse to have people to service the
copiers at night.
Four cases left. Three. Two. As
started the last case, I knew they were
getting ready to strike. Three pages left.
ing its s
The doors opened, and we saw it.
The one working copier in the Sterling
C. Evans library. It was a thrilling mo
Great. So here I was with $5 in nickels
and six monstrously huge legal books,
trying to find a copier. The one that was
And then we saw the line. Back from
the copier, around the tables, through
the stacks. Okay, okay, so it was just one
guy copying lots of pages. We sat down
The copier broke.
But I made it out of the library before
they could catch me.
Sue Krenek is a senior journalism ma
jor and editor of The Battalion. She is
in favor of sentencing all criminals In
searching for working copiers in Step
ling C. Evans.
Aggieness is contagious
I suppose the dis
ease is catching. I
hadn’t thought it
was, but I’ve ac
cepted it now.
I got back into
the office Friday
just before lunch
Many of us look back on our lives and
see a shifting, drifting mass of shapes we
can’t quite put into focus.
after spending the Thanksgiving holi
day in College Station with my daugh
ter, who attends Texas A&M.
Go to A&M, however, and you’ll see
things in focus. The Old Ags gathered
in our hotel have seen a lot of change.
When they were in school, prior to
World War II, the campus was just a
fraction of its present size. But, one
thing hasn’t changed. The traditions.
I was talking to a co-worker about the
Aggie bonfire and Thursday night’s
game that gave the Aggies their third
straight Southwest Conference title and
trip to the Cotton Bowl on New Year’s
Day. I mentioned that the hotel we were
in seemed popular with a lot of older
The members of the various classes at
A&M today go through many exercises
the Old Ags went through.
“Yeah, I bet there were a lot of for
mer Aggies there,” he said.
“There are no former Aggies,” I told
him without missing a beat.
“My God,” he said, “it didn’t take long
for them to get to you.”
I suppose not. For the uninitiated,
people who attend other schools often
say they “used to go” to a school. How
ever, at A&M, once an Aggie, always an
Even people who attend other schools
recognize that. When a friend heard my
daughter was going to A&M, he said
“That’s a shame. I mean, once you get
out of anyplace else, you’re out, but
you’re stuck being an Aggie forever.”
Given that he owns a lot of burnt
orange, he meant that as an insult; Ag
gies, however, will recognize it for the
compliment that it is.
One Aggie, who has been a major
success in his field and a confidant of
presidents, was cited last week by a
statue unveiled in his honor. He said at
the ceremony “The university has been
We need rocks, if not an A&M, then
at least something, somewhere.
We attended our first bonfire this
week. The night before the A&M-Texas
game, the midnight yell practice is
moved up a few hours and held in a
large field at the south end of the cam
If the lighting of the bonfire is a tra
dition, the building of it is more of one.
This year it took 5,500 logs and stood 50
feet high, counting the orange outhouse
mounted on top of it. Cranes are
brought in to hoist the logs, which are
bound together by hand with wire.
The logs are stood on end and the re
sult, seen at night against a dark sky, lit
dimly by flashlights, is spooky. When
the band comes in, headed by cadets
with torches, and the torches are tossed
onto the bonfire, it is an awesome scene.
Recently A&M has gotten attention
for the quality of its football program
and through the debate surrounding
that quality. Other schools in Texas have
implied that such quality goes hand-in-
hand with large cash outlays, something
the Aggies deny and the NCAA has yet
to rule on.
There were 45,000 people at the bon
fire and yell practice. The day before,
all the seniors had linked arms and
walked throughout campus on the “ele
phant walk,” symbolizing one of their
last acts as seniors.
But, my affection for A&M doesn’t
have much to do with football, though
fall is the time of year when a good
many of the traditions at the school
seem to be in sharpest focus.
The traditions are what have become
important to me. I tend to be old-fash
ioned. I grew up in a small town where
not much has changed over the years af
ter you scrape away the lacquer that
passes for progress and growth.
I know some folks consider such
things corny. I know some Longhorn
fans in the mob did. But, I find them re
assuring. It’s nice to know that, 30 years
from now, I can go back to A&M and
find them, on the night before the
Texas game, lighting a huge stack of
I went away to college to a school
founded in 1805, one where architects
designing new buildings have to con
form to the ones built 150 or more years
ago. Tradition is important at that
school and it’s nice to go back and find
some things unchanged.
It’s nice to know that seniors will link
arms, 50 years from now, and walk
through campus as a group if, for no
other reason, than it’s always been done
that way and some things just shouldn’t
change. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Some of our rootless children are
going to grow up missing out on a lot of
traditions, and that’s a shame. To pre
vent that would be reason enough to
send a kid to A&M in my book, even it
the football team went 0-10.
True Christmas spirit
We, the residents of Fourth Floor Aston Hall — South Wing, would like
to express our deepest gratitude to those involved in the theft of our
Christmas lights. The expense, both in time and money, involved in decorat
ing our wing was to be enjoyed by all, not a select few. You really do exem
plify not only the true meaning of Christmas, but also the reputation of a fel
low Ag. Please come over to pick up the boxes which were left behind in your
haste. After all, we would like the lights to be safely stored so they can be used
Edward Varela ’88
Arthur Fulbright ’90
accompanied with 31 signatures
Ringless yet proud
I am an Ag in need of some help. Sometime during the celebration of
bonfire I lost my Aggie ring. My friends and I have searched every inch of
Duncan field on our hands and knees and with metal detectors and shovels,
only to come up empty-handed. I’m convinced it had to have been picked up
by someone. I can offer $50 for its return. The time and dedication it took
for me to get it is more important than the money. Please contact me!
On a more positive note, the Fightin’ Texas Aggie 12th Man was incredi
ble during the t.u. game. I hope everyone is just as motivated to beat the hell
outta Notre Dame in Dallas.
Chris Yancy ’88
Letters to the editor should not exceed 300 words in length. The editorial staff reserves the right to edit letters
for style and length, but will make every effort to maintain the author’s intent. Each letter must be signed and
must include the classification, address and telephone number of the writer.
In a Thursday guest column, Doug Bau
mann said The Battalion was incorrect in re
porting that the Student Senate recont
mended eliminating emergency after-hours
service at the A.P. Beutel Health Center.
Baumann, chairman of the Student Got'
ernment Finance Committee, said the Sen'
ate proposal actually would allow the center
to stay open, have nurses at the center and
have a physician on call.
Only the funding for having a physician
on location was denied, he said.
The Battalion based its report on the offt
cial budget submitted by the Student Gov
ernment Finance Committee, which read:
“The Student Finance Committee unani
mously recommends that the Beutel Health
Center close between the hours of
midnight and 8:00 a.m. The service pro
vided during these hours is not cost efficient
1) A deduction of $120,000, the approxi
mate cost of operating during these eight
night-time hours. ”
The Student Senate accepted the Finance
Committee’s recommendation. The Battal
ion report was not in error.
Baumann on Thursday told a Battalion
representative that the official budget was
“misworded” and did not represent the Sen
ate’s true intentions.
He said the administrative officials who
approve the recommendations have been
made aware that the Student Senate does
not want to end night service at the health
Although no revised budget has been sub
mitted to reflect the Senate’s intentions;
Baumann wanted to emphasize that the
health center will remain open at night.
We worship change these days. We
move so often we lack a sense of place.
Rich Heiland is the editor of the Ar
lington Daily News.
by BerKe Breathed
(USPS 045 360)
Texas Press Association
Southwest Journalism Conference
The Battalion Editorial Board
Sue Krenek, Editor
Daniel A. LaBry, Managing Editor
Mark Nair, Opinion Page Editor
Amy Couvillon, City Editor
Robbyn L. Lister and Becky Weisenfels,
Loyd Brumfield, Sports Editor
Sam B. Myers, Photo Editor
The Battalion is a non-profit, self-supporting newspaper oper
ated as a community service to Texas A&M and Bryan-College Sta
Opinions expressed in The Battalion are those of the editorial
board or the author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions
of Texas A&M administrators, faculty or the Board of Regents.
The Battalion also serves as a laboratory newspaper for students
in reporting, editing and photography classes within the Depart
ment of Journalism.
The Battalion is published Monday through Friday during
Texas A&M regular semesters, except for holiday and examination
Mail subscriptions are $17.44 per semester, $34.62 per school
year and $36.44 per full year. Advertising rates furnished on re
Our address: The Battalion, 216 Reed McDonald, Texas A&M
University, College Station, TX 77843-4111.
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Reed McDonald, Texas A&M University, College Station TX
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