Teaching unity through baseball

Alexander Stephens

Recently, Northwestern administrators has talked about bringing the campus community together through a common experience. Whether it is a core curriculum, a book for all incoming freshmen to read or free — albeit with an extra fee on the tuition bill — football tickets, this is a lofty goal. Herewith, then, a humble suggestion for the inaugural University Unity Project (UUP) and how each school might develop courses to achieve this end:


Political Science: International Relations — The Cold War between Boston and New York.

English: Creative Writing, Fiction Program — Headlines proclaiming a Red Sox World Series victory.

History: No need, everyone knows the story.

Psychology: Like this needs any more analysis.


Mechanical Engineering: Dynamics of Throwing a Perfect Strike after 100 Pitches (trick course, it has nothing to do with the pitcher, but follows the walking motion of the manager to take the guy out at 99).


Performance: Record Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” and replace strings with odd, “r”-less Boston nasal twang. The recording will never be issued since no championship will be won (see Creative Writing, above).


Theater: Moments of Agony — Dramatic interpretive sketches of great Red Sox choking moments. Lower back massages available after repeated practices of the “Buckner moment.”


No Child Left Behind — Teaching the value of lowered expectations during October.


George Steinbrenner — One man’s journey to help employ every journalism school graduate as commentators and columnists during the Fall, as long as it involves writing “The Curse/1918/Trade/Bamino/Bucky/Boone”.


Paternal Genetics — Does winning skip a generation?


Marketing Losing — How ripping the hearts out of consumers can make you very, very wealthy (frequent trips to corporate boxes at Wrigley required).

So take heart, Cubs fans. There might be disappointment in Chicagoland, but nothing is colder in winter than the Fenway faithful talking about the past season.

Alexander Stephens is a Weinberg ’87 graduate. He can be reached at [email protected]