Stanford Griffins take it easy
By BRIDGET MAHONEY
Stanford Hall boasts a long list of familiar names. Jarious Jackson, John Merandi, Kory Minor and Bobby Howard are among those, as well as the players for the successful Bookstore Basketball team, Primetime.
Referred to as "The Cinderblock Palace" or "Bomb Shelter," it was built in 1957, some speculate as a sort of nuclear shelter with its 18-inch thick cinderblock walls. Ask anyone and they'll probably compare the rooms to those in a prison. And like being attached at the hip, Stanford Hall shares a lobby and a chapel with Keenan Hall, yet each has its own set of doors. Being neither an "old" dorm nor a "new" dorm, this residence hall is not considered an architectural beauty and does not possess all the luxuries of Mod Quad and West Quad. Air conditioning exists only in a few spots such as the chapel, and they only recently installed laundry machines last year.
However, its residents can enjoy its prime location next to University Health Services and the cadavers lying in the depths of Haggar Hall. Psychology majors and the perpetually sick would be lucky to live there.
It is also the home of approximately 280 men, going by the nickname, the Stanford Griffins. They were known as the Stanford Studs until last year when they voted to change it in honor of a beloved past rector, Father Robert Griffin.
Now their rector Father Tom Gaughan leads and supports them in more ways than one. Besides emphasizing an involvement in service activities, he plays goalie for the dorm's hockey team. "He's a lively guy, a spirited dude," says hall co-president Eric Glass.
To replace the past tradition of "Mr. Stanford," Father Tom originated the After Hours Benefit Bash, which had a successful second run this year in raising money for orphans in Chile. An all-night event, there were live campus bands and plenty of food for all of campus.
Other traditions include StudVegas, a theme dance with gambling. Then there is Man Week, a week long of macho competition in twinkie eating, intersection basketball, bowling and arm wrestling. A less desirable tradition for those born in winter is "laking" in which guys are thrown into the nearby lakes on their birthdays.
And the freshmen are also subject to such antics. With many pranks and hazing activities, according to Glass, "It's lots of bad news for freshmen."
It was also bad news for Father Griffin's dog, Corby, according to what seems to be the only story passed on through the years. Though, no one is sure how true it is. As the legend goes, Father Griffin owned this dog who could always be seen following him around. And then one day, some Keenan residents took the dog and threw it down the trash-shoot, eventually killing it. (What a nice story to pass on.)
In contrast, Stanford isn't particularly obsessed with proving its pride in the faces of other dorms like those with their boasted traditions and loud displays. Says junior Pete McCall, "Most are kind of laid back and don't care much about image."
All Scene Stories for Wednesday, March 8, 2000