Coming from a family background of strong women who were entrepreneurs, business owners,
heads of organizations, managers, and clerks while being wives and great mothers, I cannot imagine them, especially
in today's post feminist times, supporting the moose mascot, which is represented by BULL MOOSE in
full breeding splendor with its impressive, spatulated antlers that it carries less than a half year.
So, for me, it seemed "retarded" to even consider a mascot that did
not properly represent a little over half of the current student body... Women!
By "properly," my meaning is not as a concession: Many colleges which started as all male
now have female sports teams represented by gender names derived from the original names that are still used by male teams
i.e, Generals for males and Lady Generals, for females which is predujicial.( Go ahead, I dare you to differentiate a female
general in the Armed Services as a "Lady General" )
Just as it was correct for DARTMOUTH to discard the Indian symbol to
properly reflect The College's sensitivity and renewed commitment to Native American's, it is equally as correct
that DARTMOUTH should adopt a symbol that reflects, prima facia, The College's equal commitment to women who attend and
have been graduated from it for over 30 + years.
Since my sole goal was to find a mascot... I was trying to think of how the moose
could work to reflect this equality. Currently, the moose is the BMascotOC, and an image which I
use in business and in life. ( I have a web design company "Cool Moose and a Reclusive Goose" and lived on on Moose Hill Parkway on Moose Hill.) Therefore, going with
the overall flow in supporting the Moose as mascot initially made sense with my desire to quickly support a
However, it's likely not appreciated that ALL moose characters
and costumes are of MALE MOOSE.
So, I was looking for a "moose part" that might work as the
design essence of the moose; you know, the snout, the hump, the dropped rump, the ears, the whatever. Friends,
the moose is elegant in its ugliness. For this reason it is easily characturized. Still, this graphic quality
doesn't make the beast correct. To paraphrase a now famous expression...
"If the moose doesn't fit, it's
time for me to quit!"
And, so I did. I abandoned Dartmouth's and my moose.
Freed of the moose, my first thought turned to feathers. I could picture feathers
on the back of football helmets, as stripes replacements on the sides of pants, as chest logos, etc. Further, I felt
that the feather was an appropriate link to Dartmouth's previous symbol without the negatives. For the moment,
I was discounting the feather's negatives such as "the Dartmouth featherweights are now taking the field." I didn't
care. Thoughts were erupting.. green feather boas, etc. Well, this concept quickly ended when I discovered
that American Indian College Fund already uses the feather as their logo. Nonetheless, while
encouraged by the quality of my thought, out of respect, I dropped the feather, all together, BUT NOT THE CONCEPT.
"Feather...feather... what looks
like a feather?"
As I started to pace in my living room, I startled a family of White Tail deer on my back
lawn (actual photo) . They dashed-off. For people who don't know, White Tails raise their
tails... when startled, and on the run. This exposes the bright white underneath hair (so much for Darwin's natural
camoflauge theory). This "flash" is so striking that one can catch this occurance hundreds of yards away. Whatever,
their disappearing butts inspired a new thought.
"Feather... White tail...
Feather... White Tail."
"White Tail... Male... White
I could already see the faux white tails being shaken by the Dartmouth faithful in the
stands. Where I saw the feather, I now saw the white tail. I saw white tails being attached to belts, hanging
from pick-up truck mirrors... white tails all over. Again, for the time, I was not concerned with the possible negatives;
"piece of tail," a soft image, and sadly even in the exclusive use of "white" though it has nothing to do with race in this
It was time to brew a pot of coffee and re-group...
"Moose equals antlers."
"Antlers equals males."
"No other part works."
"Feather reflects Dartmouth's
"Dartmouth's past is used by
the American Indian College Fund."
DEAD END, BUT...
"Feather equals White Tail
"White Tail Deer tails equal
NOT QUITE BINGO, BUT GETTING THERE.
So, two more cups ... and I was back at it with caffine clarity.
"Why would Dartmouth women want
the bull moose?"
"What is it that mascot moose
"Antlers you fool!"
"Yes, but do you think that they understand that antlers
are only on males...
Do you think that even the guys know that the bulls carry antlers for less than half the year?"
"Where can I guy find a rack
of antlers on a female deer?"
"Simma down, John..."
"Just go through it, again.
"Moose... Antlers on males."
"White Tail Deer... Antlers
"Moose... Spaulated antlers...Cervidae."
"Deer... Refined antlers...
"Hold on a minute... What
if the Cervidae classification has little
to do with antlers! You
i-d-i-o-t! Check-out Cervidae from the ground up,
"Cervidae... Cervidae... Cervidae..."
I'm looking up Cervidae... and read,
"The only Cervidae
in which males and females have antlers is the reindeer, also known as caribou!"
Having built pages for the Class of '65 website
on Robert May's and Rudolph's tie to The College, I was aware of this reindeer connection, though it had not a scintilla
in this deduction. In truth, I had forgotten all about ol' Rudy, BUT!
When I googled "reindeer studies" and had Dartmouth come tumbling out in several early page listings...
I KNEW... JUST KNEW... THAT REINDEER / CARIBOUS ARE THE
RIGHT CREATURES TO INSPIRE DARTMOUTH'S NEW MASCOT AND IMMERSION -- ACADEMICALLY AND SOCIALLY -- INTO DEVELOPING A NEW
CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY CULTURE THAT IS POSITIVE, FUN, YET IMPORTANT TO A NORTHERN WORLD SOCIETY.
Rudolph is NO PART of this
Santa's Rudolph is a fiction... Dartmouth's
Reindeer are reality.
Imagine. The answer to the mascot question was already on campus; truly a diamond under
Dartmouth's feet as many eyes scanned horizons for another gem.
And, if this magnificent
has been previously considered
it's time for dumpster
retrieve Dartmouth's future!