I am glad you chose to visit! My blog is a compilation of the many hats I find myself wearing. On any given day I may be an encourager, an instructor, or just a lady who is venting. You, dear reader, will probably identify with my triumphs and my tribulations! These snapshots fit into my Life Scrapbook I have named A. McInnis Artworks. I hope you will find something worth your while.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The "W"

(Sitting here typing and all of a sudden I dropped part of a reduced fat Wheat Thin in the keys of my keyboard. So if strange words pop up, you'll know what's going on.)

All that talk about perfume and Columbus brought back memories of college days gone by. I thought some of the younger followers would enjoy some of my college adventures and learn to appreciate what freedom they have! In 1967 I was ready to roar off to Ole Miss, when my daddy put the breaks on that dream. He didn't feel that I was ready for the "rowdiness" of the rebels and felt that the all girls' college (no, it wasn't a university yet) Ms. College For Women would be more my cup of tea....MSCW. Or as we southern ladies liked to call it...the "W".

Let me give you an overview... Freshman year: must take PA (Personal Appearance class)... and learn to walk and act like a lady. Every year: Curfew: 9 pm weeknights & 11 pm on weekends. Must take PE (aka PHYSICAL EDUCATION) (oh, no!!!) every year...I nearly failed tennis, did reasonably well in square dancing, and excelled in bowling. (I was told I had a natural curve ...hmmm.) I married my senior year so I could bypass the biggest and worst PE requirement of all...SWIMMING. (You were only excused if you were married...so that did it. Give me the ring, set a date....)

IF you smoked (and I did not), you must go to the smoking room, be seated and twirl your ashes off the end of the cigarette....no thumping! (I will admit that I tried to smoke for 2 days...yikes...can't believe I just admitted that...but I didn't care for the aftertaste so it was a NO GO for me.)

Your date waited in the lobby and they called you over the loud speaker and told you and all the world that "You had a guest in the lobby."

You signed out to go home. You signed out to walk uptown. You signed out to go on a date and heaven help the girl whose card was still turned over when the housemother "checked" all the signed out cards. You could be campused....for not being on time. Once I took too many "cuts" or absences from bowling and was campused for the whole weekend. I was banished to my room and could only come out long enough to eat in the dining hall and then go straight back to my room until Sunday night. (I was a wild and crazy thing.) I narrowly escaped campusment my freshman year because I wore a raincoat over my tennis uniform to English class. I had no car and had to sprint from the tennis court to the English hall and I just wasn't a great sprinter. My English professor told me if I EVER did such a thing as wear a raincoat over a tennis uniform again I'd be CAMPUSED!! Scared the begebbers out of me...I didn't even take the coat off, sat there buttoned up and writing like a madwoman for over an hour perspiring like a fullback...except at the "W" we called it "glowing."

You could not eat in any establishment that served beer or liquor. Once I had a date with a guy from State and he took me to a restaurant called the "Golden Horn"... when we walked in I saw they served beer and was almost comatose before the end of the meal, I was so scared that I would be spied at a "beer serving place" to eat...I NEVER dated that rascal again.

There were so many rules that we had dorm meetings every night at 11 pm for six weeks to go over them all. I was always so tired from PE that I was usually asleep by 9:30 and had to be waked up. Down the stairs with my hair rolled up I'd trudge. I could hardly listen I was so exhausted, but listen I did. I couldn't risk ruining the family name by breaking any of the 2 or 3 thousand rules that were present in our little rule book.

I will expound on some of the other exciting adventures at the all girl school in a later post, but if you know of anybody who actually attended the "W", ask them if what I am saying isn't the truth...back in the 60's and 70's it was the closest thing to a convent in the state....


Lenore said...

Hmmm...... I think Mississippi College might have been even more restrictive, but nonetheless, your memories are correct! I don't remember the Golden Calf, so you might have to enlighten me on that place! Some of us were just talking about Personal Appearance class the other day and some of those listening commented that it would probably serve many a young woman well today to have to attend such a class! (I can't imagine YOU campused for anything!)

stjthomas said...

I have heard about the "W"...Are you sure it was the Golden Calf?? Maybe the Golden Horn?? Between Columbus and Starkvile before you get to the crossroads...

Angela McInnis said...

Susanne,It WAS the Golden Horn...I'll make that change!!! Golden Calf was Exodus....sorry!!
Lenore, MANY, MANY a young lady would profit by a PA course today!!

Lenore said...

You must have had a date who had a big pocketbook and a CAR if he took you to the Golden Horn! :-)

Angela McInnis said...

He could afford it because I was too scared to eat!

Julie said...

I remember running into O. H. (your room/suite mate) once in Columbus during the summer on a Sunday night -- probably 1970. She wasn't in summer school, but had come over to spend a couple of days with someone on campus. She decided to go to a movie with us, but when we got out of the movie she realized it was after curfew and she couldn't go to the dorm. Luckily, she had not yet signed in as a guest. So we took her on to Dave's folks' house in Starkville with us and took her back the next morning.

hannah singer said...

"personal appearance" sounds amazing! Love it. Also, the lack of that course is exactly what is wrong with girls these days!

Baker said...

My mom went to the "W" for a while. Then she broke her arm swinging from the high bar in gym class and had to walk all the way to the nurses station or whatever it was called back then! She thought she'd pass out! I'll have to ask her about personal appearance class! I'm sure she remembers... Perhaps BHS needs to start that class up... it would probably do some good there or at least get a rise out of the parents... :)

Elysa said...

I am also a W-Girl. I was there from 84-88 and took the personal appearance class. By then, it was only required by certain majors. Since I was a Clothing, Textiles, Merchandising major my freshman year, I signed up. To this day I STILL think of Mrs. Hicks when I'm putting on a coat (ladies NEVER awkwardly raise their arms) or writing a thank you note to a hostess (you write it to the lady of the house, NOT the master). I think by then the name had been changed to "personal dev'p", though, and there was also a "fashion" one. Maybe they just made the one class into two?

Regardless, I remember more things from those classes than I do from biology or stats. And my girls love me to tell them the lesson that was taught us about how to catch the right kind of man. Dress for his type!

My four years at the W were four of the best years of my life. So many of my best friends and Troubadours sisters are still friends today. And the relationship and organizational lessons I learned have made my life easier and richer.

Thanks for posting and I look forward to reading more about your W days!

Long Blue Line Blessings,
Elysa Harvey MacLellan

Mia said...

Oh My Goodness...when I saw the entry, "The W"...I knew...it had to be my beloved MUW. I was married when I attended, only because an opening at the Center for Infants and Parents at the front of the campus came up and I got the call to put my little one in there. SHE learned to walk backwards through the Old Maid's Gate, Kiss the Rock...oh we were faithful with that....and reading the swimming class gave me nightmares. UGH...I did not KNOW that if I was married I could get out of that until right before I graduated...I suffered through one semester of that class, got sick and lost my endurance, but took the darn final anyway...I was exhausted by the time we had to push off and float. I "touched" the side and got the dreaded whistle I was done. I was livid! So I went back with 2 other girls..one of which was on the block and was devasted she failed the first test. I came back and again, my endurance was shot, so I just stopped and said I was done. I waited until my last semester on the block to challenge not having that requirement...and didn't realize the married bit would have saved me earlier. BUT I was also going to be 25 when I graduated! The Dean of Education didn't believe that, so I had to show my ID and Military Dependent ID...and with the swish of his pen and my silent prayer and "thank you Lord"...I got exempted from that class. And guess who handed me my diploma as I graduated...that PE prof...fresh back from getting her doctorate....she asked if I ever passed that swim test...I smiled sweetly and said, "No, I was too old and married, so I got excused." LOL
But to this day, The W holds a very dear place in my heart. I will hold my education from The W to any...ANY school today.