Rice Status Guide, 1967

Some of this is mystifying, but some of it does feel familiar and all of it is a nice snapshot of life on the ground at Rice in the late ’60s. I believe the author was Thomas Cantrell of the Chemistry Department but I don’t really know much about him.

Rice status guide 1967

Bonus: If you had to guess, how many anvils would you think were on campus? Just off the top of my head I’d put the number somewhere around 4, I think. This one is in the art shop.


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6 Responses to Rice Status Guide, 1967

  1. James Medford says:

    By the time I arrived at Rice in ’81, REI (Rice Eats It) had pretty much disappeared from the campus vocabulary. It was carved into one of the desks in the Physics Amphitheater, and I might have seen it written on a bathroom wall or two, but that’s about it. Speaking of which, this book came out that year. Rice had some of the funniest entries …

  2. I never heard of REI other than as an outdoor equipment store. I also never saw the Texas A&M monogram anywhere on campus without leading and trailing “E’s.” A cute bit of graffiti in the restrooms of Hamman Hall: there used to be a little folding shelf in the toilet stalls (maybe still is) labeled “Utility Shelf.” Never seen those in any other restrooms. All of them had been changed to read “Futility Shelf.”

  3. effegee says:

    Y’all are definitely deprived…

  4. almadenmike says:

    I don’t recall this Status Guide, but “REI” stood for the pejorative, “Rice Eats It.”

    Dr. Cantrell was a residential associate at Baker and known for his parties with highly fortified, chemically enhanced mai tais (the legal drinking age was 18 at the time) as well as his annual, humorous “Super Tests”, which he would suddenly deliver at class dresses in his appropriately patterned “SuperProf” teacher-in-tights outfit. I have at least one copy packed away somewhere, which I’ll post should I find it.

    He and Ron Magid made chemistry so interesting and exciting in the late 1960s that the number of chem majors jumped (in numbers and quality) during their time at Rice. But neither got tenure, ~ 1970, apparently because their research was less than desired and, students complained, their teaching skills were not highly valued.

    Dr. Magid moved to the University of Tennessee, from which he retired in 2006.

    Dr. Cantrell went to American University and died, far too young, in 1994. (http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/cen-v072n017.p072)

    Perhaps Dr. Ron Sass could relate more substantive information.

    Also, I wonder if the chemistry department has a modern “diamond anvil” for high-pressure experiments. Dr. John Margrave’s high-pressure chemistry research made use of a huge “tetrahedral press” that was a work of art.

  5. I wonder whether “the Ring trilogy” is Wagner or Tolkein…

    • Richard Schafer says:

      Since Wagner’s Ring cycle has 4 operas, almost certainly Tolkien. The mid-60s were when LOTR became highly popular in the US.

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