Friday Afternoon Follies: When Do You Need an Umbrella Even Though It Isn’t Raining?

When it’s young love, 1916. That’s Carl Knapp and Anna Ricketts and yes, they got married.

Sure looks like fun.

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9 Responses to Friday Afternoon Follies: When Do You Need an Umbrella Even Though It Isn’t Raining?

  1. Terry Kilpatrick says:

    I went to Rice in the 70s, and you also needed your umbrella to keep the bird droppings off you, especially when walking from the women’s colleges (Brown and Jones at the time). Anything could startle the birds, and they would be off en masse, leaving their little remembrences behind. An umbrella was good protection, even if not for so romantic a reason as for the young couple in your photo.

  2. effegee says:

    I’ll second that. As a commuting student in spring of 1970, the walkway that ran beside the old Chemistry Laboratory in the direction of Hamman Hall was perilous. Either the birds were gathered overhead or their calling cards were covering the walk or both. There were mornings that the guano was so deep that you wanted to have the umbrella just to fall on in case your feet flew out from under you as you scurried from the commuting student lot (now known as the North Lot) toward the inner loop.

  3. Francis Eugene "Gene" PRATT, Institute Class of '56 says:

    In the 70’s, I think it was all Nixon’s fault.

  4. Grungy says:

    I borrowed The MOB’s largest crash cymbals once, back then.
    Took them over between Jones and Brown.
    There were three sounds, all of them relatively loud.
    Crash! Flutter! Flup!
    Very effective for clearing the trees temporarily.

  5. I remember the cannons. I’m not sure what finally worked, but I believe they all moved to the Galleria. Or Pearland.

  6. Grungy says:

    There were a lot downtown, near City Hall, at one point.
    There are also a lot along the power lines and in the esplanade trees where Bay Area Blvd crosses the Gulf Freeway.

  7. Richard Miller (Hanszen '75 & '76) says:

    Many of them moved to the oak trees along Fannin As I recall the final solution was to trim all of the small branches off of the trees to reduce the number of roosting spots. The birds are very gregarious and if they cannot roost close together in a tree they find another. The biology department did quite a bit of work and found this was the only solution. Loud sounds would simply cause the birds to take flight (after lightning their load so to speak) but they would shortly return to the tree for round 2,3,4…

    One urban legend has B&G dropping nets over the trees in Dr. Hackerman’s patio to try to prevent the birds from roosting there. The punch line was ‘birds can walk too’

  8. Ellen Knapp Hohl Stutts says:

    OK, this is wonderful, but a little odd, to be introduced to my romantic grandparents! Would that we had benefit of this information when we were in college!

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