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Questions and Answers

By Lisa Asher, Associate Editor, Baylor Line, and Editor, Between the Lines

Baylor Line news editor Meg Cullar can sing the Baylor fight song without any advance notice–and she proved it last week by warbling it in my office, while a caller on the other end of my speaker phone took notes.

Believe it or not, that’s a pretty typical afternoon at the Baylor Alumni Association. To put Meg’s karaoke performance in proper perspective, you first have to understand the kinds of questions we get from alums, friends, and strangers alike.

Every day, we receive phone calls and e-mails from people who need a specific piece of information. Often, it’s a typical question: How do I update my contact information? Where can I get a replacement membership card? When is the next Baylor Homecoming?

But it’s the atypical questions that are the most interesting, sometimes frustrating, but always fun–at least in retrospect.

There are a whole range of questions and comments about things outside the BAA’s jurisdiction:

  • Please do something about the lighting in the Ferrell Center.
  • Where are the baby-changing stations on campus?
  • Why is there so much dog poop at the Homecoming parade?

We always have a huge number of comments about Baylor football: Why aren’t we winning? When will we win? Who’s to blame for not winning?

And then there are the very specific sorts of queries. We once had an older alumnus call from the nursing home he was living in with a request that we pick him up. He didn’t want to go anywhere in particular, just away. One woman stopped by to ask if she could breast feed her baby in the alumni center, and we provided her with a place.

And then, of course, there was the fight song request, which actually came to us through an online mailbox the alumni association helps maintain for the university. I responded to the woman’s e-mail by saying she could call me and I’d be happy to do what I could. And then I promptly forgot about it.

So when the call came a few days later, I wasn’t really prepared. Actually, when the woman said “fight song,” I assumed she meant “That Good Ole Baylor Line”–and I can sing that pretty well, if I do say so myself. But the fight song–not so much.

The woman, we’ll call her Jane, explained that a friend was retiring from the school where they both worked, and since the retiree was a Baylor grad, the elementary school kids were going to sing the Baylor fight song while Jane pranced around in a bear costume. It wasn’t actually a brown bear costume, but they were going to try to pass it off as a Baylor Bear anyway.

The assembly was taking place the next day, Jane said, and she’d left messages with numerous people at Baylor, with no response. It was, literally, a song emergency.

So Meg came into my office and went through several choruses of the fight song, while Jane wrote down the lyrics and made sure she got the tune right. I asked Jane to send us pictures of the event–and you can be sure that when I get them, I’ll share them online.

So, if you’ve got questions, we’ll be happy to answer them. I’ll even give you my direct line: (254) 710-6434. But please understand that I can’t do anything about the football team–and I still don’t know the Baylor fight song.

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