In a follow up to the post about the 1953 Virginia Spectator and its booklet of ersatz carols, here’s one titled “Advice to All Those Who Think That Being a Civil Engineer is the Greatest Form of Life, or Rudolph the Red-Nosed Wahoo.” Just goes to show that the fine art of taunting the toolies—er, I mean, engineering students—is not new.
A few lyric references:
Slide rule: Precursor of the computer and electric calculator. Ask your dad.
The men of Rugby Road: Then as now, the center of fraternity parties. Presumably “first base” referred to socializing with women at fraternity parties, rather than “getting to first base” WITH a fraternity member; but you never know.
Thornton Hall: UVA engineering building.
“Punch”: UVA humor magazine of the 1940s and 1950s, sometimes appearing in the pages of the Spectator.
Rudolph the red-nosed wahoo,
Was a scroungy first-year man.
Oh how his slide rule hung out,
And oh how his nostrils ran.
He never got to first base
With the men of Rugby Road.
He settled for the worst place:
And at Thornton Hall he glowed.
Then one dreary Christmas eve
F. Scott’s ghost appeared:
“Rudolph with your nose so drippy
Try to act a bit more Chippy.”
Now he’s an English major,
He’s no longer out to lunch,
Sipping his dry martini,
And reading his last week’s “Punch.”