Pepper Mackay


(end of the year coda)

Sagebrush 5-4-2001


Another year in my endless progression of semesters. I'd say how long I've been here, but a lady never reveals her age. I guess I'm working towards some major or other. Eventually, they'll just look at the number of credits I've got, and pull some major out of the pieces. There's got to be some sort of degree you can get from taking every 101 class except foreign language.

When I was approached to write this advice column for the Sagebrush, my first thought was, "Ew. The Sagebrush." But the people here have not been as lame as I'd been afraid they would be, and the office really doesn't smell that bad, and the stink doesn't get in your clothes that much, if you're just there to drop off your column and pick up the new stack of letters once a week.

It's been a fun year, and although I still wouldn't be caught dead picking up a copy of the Sagebrush where anyone can see me, it makes me feel good to think that someone, somewhere, is seeing my name in print and knowing they can never have me. Well... okay, they can probably have me pretty easy if they buy me a couple of beers. Call me friendly.

The biggest challenges to writing at the Sagebrush have been defending the accusation that I'm an invented character, and figuring out the proper mix of asperity and actual advice to the people who write in. Let's face it, I wasn't mostly serious in the stuff I wrote, but I got the feeling that most of the people who wrote in weren't too serious either. Hopefully, they all had a good sense of humor, and an ability to laugh at themselves, or else they were sending in questions about friends' situations because they have a healthy ability to laugh at others. Maybe it's not as healthy to laugh at others, but it's a hell of a lot easier.

I still don't take back my earlier statement that it is physically possibly to break a window and stab someone in the neck with it. And I still don't think anyone should do it.

To prevent offending the people who give us money, we had to edit out all references to the residence halls, even though the majority of our readers and letter-writers lived there. Looking back, maybe that's part of why the Sagebrush doesn't feel like a real college newspaper. Not enough malicious rumors about the dorms and the campus, which, of course, any self-respecting young person i going to hate. The more the ban booze, the more we'll hate them .Pretty simple.

I'd like to thank Alex for giving me this job, and everyone at the Sagebrush, and all the guys who kept my weekends busy.

And one more thing ­ don't do drugs.