Here is a letter to the Record:
Not being much of a Charles Dickens fan, I would say these are neither the best of times nor the worst of times, but we may soon find ourselves close to one extreme or the other with the approaching deadline for transferring Antioch College to the Board Pro Tem.
That does make these the most stressful of times for many of us in Nonstop, the College Revival Fund and the Alumni Board.
Perhaps it’s thus an apt time to turn to some fragments from the poem “If” by another Brit who is not one of my favorites, Rudyard Kipling and conclude with a bit of paraphrase to fit our circumstances:
“If you can keep your head when all about you
“Are losing theirs …
“If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
“Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies…
“If you can dream — and not make dreams your master;
“If you can think — and not make thoughts your aim…
“Yours is the legacy and all that’s in it,
“And — which is more — you’ll be an Antiochian.”
Knowingly or not, that old colonial racist was explicating a principle attributed to the pre-Christian sage Hillel (cited here in a slightly interpretive translation) in the Talmud:
“Where there are no human beings, strive to be a human being.”
Collegiality, creativity and fortitude, especially now, are among our most treasured assets.
Where there are no Antiochians, strive to be an Antiochian.
— Tim Klass, Alumni Board Nominating Committee chair, winter 1968 Record editor, class of 1971