Super Student Lesson V: Hobo Day, Hobo Yea!

Tony Reiss

Tony ReissSuper Student

Hobo Day. Or is it Hobo Days, Hobo Daze or Hobo Week? It seems that there is no consensus on what to call the biggest one day celebration in the Dakotas. Perhaps the Alumni Association could take up the cause of creating an official name (just make sure it is socio-economic neutral). For the purposes of this column I shall refer to the day in question as Hobo Day.

I woke up on Hobo Day morning feeling like P. Diddy. I grabbed my glasses (and umbrella8212;ella8212;ella8212;ella as rain was in the forecast) and made my way to the door. I was about to hit the city. And by hit the city I mean walk down the block to watch the parade.

For the most part the parade was a wonderful experience. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to The Pride as they made their way towards downtown. I always enjoy seeing the student organization floats. There were some that were very creative. My two favorites include the golf cart topped with a cardboard box designed to look like a VW minibus. I give them props for incorporating all aspects of the theme Peace, Love, Hobos. The VW minibus integrates the peace and love spirit that apparently was emblematic of the 1960s (I have no proof that peace and/or love existed in the 1960s8212;in fact I would like see the 1960s erased from history. Quick somebody get me the number the Texas Board of Education. I need to speak the textbook committee immediately). The cardboard of course symbolizes the Hobo Hamptons. My other favorite float came from, what I suspect to be, an engineering group. The best part about this float was the candy canon (which is not a canon made from candy, but rather a canon that shoots candy). I just wish they would have fired some my way.

Like a politician handing out propaganda and stickers to children at a parade, I have some unsolicited advice to parade participants. Try to keep, at most, a two car length between your float and the float in front of you. There were many times that the gap was long between parade units that I had to resort the “pretending to text” just so I wouldn’t have to talk to my brother-in-law.

The parade also included a handful of dignitaries. President Chicoine greeted on-lookers from the comfort of Golf Cart One, city councilors handed out candy to young children (I suppose handing out candy to adults would make them no better than those who participated in the recent Oats for Votes scandal), and Senator John Thune was literally running for office (no sign from his challenger though).

After the parade I participated in my first ever indoor-tailgate party. We were served Sloppy Joes (for those of you who use a vernacular from west of Minnesota, Sloppy Joe loosely translates to barbeque). We spent the time preceding kick-off watching listening to the sounds of America’s golden decade, the 1980s.

The game was epic, the crowd was epic, the half-time show was epic, and after losing the match to the SDSU Jackrabbits, the ride home for the Youngstown State Penguins was epoch. One thing about the game confused me though. At one point during the game I looked around me and noticed that a lot of people had removed their shoes and were holding them defiantly in the air. If anyone knows the answer to this please fill me in.

After the game I went downtown for dinner and drinks. My wife and I were dressed like hobos, complete with fingerless gloves. Dinner was filled with lots of laughter, camaraderie and rambunctious chanting. Our chanting even garnered us some birthday cake from the table next to ours. I don’t know if it was because they appreciated hearing us chant (Harney Peak, Hobo Day, Birthday Cake, Take your time, and the obligatory USA among other topics) or if they wanted our mouths full so that they could enjoy their meal.

In the spirit of Hobo Day I carried an empty tin can in which I collected change. All in all I brought in about $9. Thank you to all who donated to my hobo fund. I appreciate it. I used the funds to procure some Grain Belt Premium.

Even though Hobo Day is passed, it’s never too early to start thinking about next year’s celebration. I have come up with ideas for themes:

*Mr. Hobo-chev tear down this wall (my personal favorite)

*Eat, Pray, Hobo, or Eat, Prey, Hobo

*Hobo Aid

*Beverly Hobos 90210

*Hobo Potter

*Beverly Hills Hobo

*Indiana Hobo and the Hobo of Doom

*Hobo Wars V: The Hobo-pire Strikes Back

*Dude, Where’s My Bindle?

*I Voted for Weary Wil and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt … And an Unexplained Rash

Join me next time when I revisit what it’s like to turn 21.

Tony Reiss is a non-traditional student majoring in economics. Contact Tony at [email protected].