(aka, Ya’ll Grow Up Now, Hear?)
I became aware of the Beaver Problem when researching the 18 June 2000 issue. People really enjoyed the resulting story. Pay particular attention to the second half:
Sam Pshyshlak says a crazed beaver attacked her dogs — two 200-lb. Newfoundlands. “It pinned them. I never thought beavers were capable of that,” said the Manitoba, Canada, farmer. “I’ve lost all respect for beavers. I never would have imagined this from a beaver.” Meanwhile, Beaver College of Glenside, Penn., has decided to change its name. Beaver president Bette E. Landman says the name “too often elicits ridicule in the form of derogatory remarks pertaining to the rodent, the TV show Leave It to Beaver and the vulgar reference to the female anatomy.” A committee has been formed to recommend a new name. “Beaver College doesn’t really represent who we are anymore,” said spokesman Bill Avington. (Reuters) …Which is precisely the problem the frat boys have been complaining about.
Beaver College’s new name — Arcadia University — became official on 16 July 2001. The same school spokesman noted in the above story, Bill Avington, said Arcadia “seems to be a perfect name” considering its “origin as a picturesque region of ancient Greece and its associations with a peaceful environment for thought and learning.”
In reporting on the name change, the Associated Press asked Avington if there was “any way anyone can make something rude out of the new name?”
“We don’t believe so,” Avington replied. “Certainly, that was something we looked for. We tried to go through every scenario. We’ve looked pretty carefully at it.”
I knew a challenge when I saw one! So This is True sponsored a contest for “something rude” made out of the school’s new name. Wit, creativity and humor most certainly counted. The prize: an autographed This is True book. The contest was closed to new entries on 20 July 2001.
There were scores of entries — and (surprisingly enough) some of the “rudest” were from women. Many of the entries were fine-tuned for clarity or humor. Duplicate entries were credited to the person who submitted the item first, or with the most clever or humorous twist.
Entries essentially fell into several broad (heh heh) categories:
- Entries like “Fartcadia” and things having to do with “arcade” games were entered often.
- However, now and then there were some clever twists on the “arcade” idea, though they’re not a “rude twist on the school’s new name” — which is the overriding contest requirement —
- “The school where you pay your tuition by putting quarters in a slot” (Kathy, Michigan)
- “Kinda like arcade because all the girls there can be bought with quarters and easily played?” (Laura, Illinois)
A lot of people didn’t follow the simple rules of the contest, which included a requirement to give their first name and state of residence. And most of them were probably college grads….
- “A Root Chewing Animal Dies In America.” (John, Washington)
- “Awfully Randy Cute Academians Doing Indecent Actions.” (James, BC Canada)
- “Arrogant Regents Create Another Deviant Institutional Acronym.” (Daniel,
- “Another Reason Colleges Are Deemed Idiot Academies.” (Jim, Pennsylvania)
- “Arcadia University — I’ve a racy, nudist air.” (Jeff, Maryland)
- “Arcadia University, Glenside Pennsylvania — Everyday villains updating inane raciness” (also Jeff, Maryland)
- “Arcadia University — is a rude, icy variant.” (Aryeh, Israel)
- “Arcadia University — Dirty avarice in USA.” (Shane, Virginia)
Reasonably Clever Miscellaneous Entries — fun stuff that doesn’t really qualify according to the rules:
- “Got the urge to learn? Come to Arcadia! Got the itch and burn? Oops that’s Chlamydia!” (Tim, Texas)
- “Gimme an A, gimme an R, gimme a C, an A, a D, an I, an A! What’s it spell? BEAVER!” (David, New Hampshire)
- “In homage to telling somebody to f— off, how about simply, Arc U!” (the same David in New Hampshire)
- Similar, but with a twist: “Arc. U. over and ram it in the old Beaver.” (Mary, Alabama)
- Only one limerick! “At the school that is known as Arcadia / Men seldom with women do play-dia / The pleasures they seek / Are decidedly Greek / And it’s said they’re renowned for fellate-ia!” (Maureen, Ontario Canada)
- “The Arcadia Chant: ArrrrrrUuuuu — Arcadia! / ArrrrrrUuuuu — a Ladia? Prove it to us Show it to us — Gooooo Beavers! / Prove it to us Show it to us — Gooooo Beavers!” (Joseph, North Carolina)
- “Thanks to Arcadia, Ball State will have to change its name to Boardwalkia University.” (Mike, Virginia)
- “Just as ‘Beaver’ itself was a euphemism, it is my humble suggestion that by mass proclamation (as evidenced by acknowlegement in your column) we all begin using ‘Arcadia’ as a euphemism for Beaver as a euphemism for the center of female anatomy! The beauty of this of course is that the word then becomes an ‘exact’ replacement!” (Russ, California)
- Several pointed out the roots of the classic place called Arcadia (“I can’t wait to see what grief the cheerleaders get from lit majors who have read their mythology.” –Shana in California), but none was better read than Nina in Pennsylvania: “‘The herdsmen [of Arcadia] made love one of their chief occupations because of their leisure, their scanty dress, their healthy and plentiful food, their youthfulness, and their proximity to animals.’ (Thomas Rosenmeyer, citing the 16th-century Italian philologist Julius Caesar Scaliger)”
Runners Up — reasonably clever miscellaneous entries that do qualify according to the rules
- “Archaic University” (Nina, Florida)
- “Acrania University (‘1. Partial or total absence of the skull; 2. The lowest group of Vertebrata, including the amphioxus, in which no skull exists.’ —Webster’s dictionary)” (Emil, New Jersey)
- “‘OurLabia’ (I think it’s a pretty obvious one.)” (Cindy, Illinois)
- “Muffcadia” (Don, Oregon — “The Beaver State”, he notes)
- “Realising that (according to a former Australian Prime Minister) I’m from the ‘Arse End of the World’, ‘Arse-Endia University’ springs to mind.” (Vanessa, Australia)
|The Winning Entry
by Don in Georgia”Argaydia University — because there’s no Beaver there anymore!”
An Honorable Mention goes to Jerry in Mississippi, who was one of the few who noticed the subtitle of this page and offered this song, sung to the tune of “The Beverly Hillbillies”. Jerry also won an autographed This is True book for this effort:
She was Head Beaver — the College president,
Then one day, she copped an attitude,
“We must change our name so the boys’ll not be rude!”
(Beaver that is, rodent, Leave it to….)Well the next thing ya know ol’ Bette was in a fray
“We’ll have a PC name and we’ll have it by today!”
Hen-pecked Bill who did whatever he was told,
Suggested a name (the first time he’d been bold)
(“Arcadia,” he squeaked, “simple pleasure, quiet….”)”Arcadia!” Bette roared, as she ended her bad mood
“It is quite refined and can never be made crude,”
“Arcadia’s the name that suits us to a tee,”
“I dare anyone to make sport of me.”
(Laughs, that is, fun and games…)The gauntlet was tossed to Cassingham’s big crew,
The readers and lovers of online’s “This is True”
“We must find a way to put an end to Bette’s refrain,”
“To poke fun at PC that has gone insane.”
(Looney, that is — totally whacked!)
Ya’ll grow up now, hear?
Last But Not Least was Cyndy in Pennsylvania, who didn’t really supply a rude twist on the new name (strike one), didn’t get her entry in on time (strike two), and used the Honorable Mention above for her inspiration (strike three) — but the result is a home run! Sung to “We Love You Conrad” from Bye Bye Birdy:
Oh yes, we do!
Just saw this contest
From “This is True”.
We’re now Arcadia?! PEE-YEW!
Oh, Beaver, we love you!
Entries came from Australia, Canada, Israel, South Africa, the UK and the USA.