The Fighting Red Onionhead, a.k.a. Roger, a.k.a. Ode de Capa  Dedicated Idiocy, A personal history of the Penn State Monty Python Society by Alyce Wilson

School Year 1988-1989

Strip Tease or Inauguration?

Ian Podraza was officially sworn in as MPS president on January 25, 1989, in a suitable sort of impromptu ceremony.

The meeting started out silly and went downhill from there. I was partially to blame. Since Damon [Buckwalter] was sitting next to me, I told him to get me an eraser. Then, thus armed, I attempted to assassinate the president-elect. I missed.

But Ian picked up the un-detonated Indonesian killer eraser and threw it, missing Damon and pegging Matt [Pyson] on the side of the face, knocking his glasses off. Oops!

From then on, it was utter chaos. Whenever another member entered the room, I shouted, "I can't help noticing that you're not Chuck!" [Note: I was doing a show that Friday on the Bonzo Dog Band and had been promised by new member Chuck Shandry that I could borrow his extensive collection of Bonzo vinyl.]

Things got still sillier. Paul Farkas and I stole the table from right under Ian's nose, and we carried it out into the hall and back to the back of the room. When Ian demanded that the podium be returned, L.J. [Sparvero] picked up the podium and took it to him.

Frustrated, Ian took it upon himself to begin stripping to the waist, while people shouted, "It's a man's life taking your clothes off in public."

Finally, Paul and Jon Acheson carried the table back to the front of the room, over the desks, while people did the limbo under it.

Things got even siller. Someone started flicking the lights on and off, and Damon turned on the overhead projector and started panning it around the room.

Eventually, I saw that things were much too silly, so I decided to come to Ian's aid. I stood next to him and said, "Look what you've done to your president. I suggest we all apologize. Everybody, say 'I'm sorry, Ian' on the count of three. One... two..."

(Here follows massive confusion and discord.)

Ian was sworn in, and the actual business was attended to. [...]

Meanwhile, I couldn't help noticing that nobody there was Chuck. I began to get desperate, jumping on people and asking where Chuck was and if they knew his last name. None of them did. I grabbed Matt by the shirt and demanded to know where Chuck was. He didn't know.

L.J. had brought one of his Christmas presents, a nice camera, and he took a lot of pictures. Once, he strode up to the front of the room, smiled, and leaned on the table. Immediately thereafter, the camera flashed. Everyone applauded him.

Chuck never did show up, to my dismay. I gave up and invited anyone who wanted to help write skits to come along to Atherton after the meeting.


Ironically, I ran into Chuck a couple days later on campus and was overjoyed until I discovered that he was in the process of movie and had boxed up his records, making them temporarily inaccessible. I made do by borrowing a couple Bonzo albums from the guy who ran the blues show at WPSU and was also a fan. Lesson being, never write a radio show around albums you don't physically have.

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