Campus Politics: Chapter One
Note: This is a chapter from an unfinished SG satire, the concept I used as a meta-novel in the book Reunion at University Avenue. In a way, this is a rough draft of what would become that novel.
Campus Politics. . . No Longer Just a Game
Tyler Goldman opened his mailbox, hoping to not see yet another credit card bill. He just hated to see those bills pile up, especially since his mother promised to pay for everything, so long as he got his college degree with a decent GPA. This month, though, his mother was mad at him for his C- average last semester, and was withholding funds.
With a beer bottle in one hand, he grabbed out all of the envelopes. One was, in fact, from a credit card company. With a sigh, Tyler went up to his cheap apartment. After dropping everything on the kitchen table, Tyler sat down and opened up the envelopes, starting with the credit card company.
The tall man with a skinny physique jumped out of his chair, nearly knocking it over. “Matt! Matt! We can do it!” Tyler said as he rushed to his friend’s bedroom.
“What?” Matt said groggily as he twisted around to face the open door, thus turning away from his girlfriend of the week. “What are you babbling about?”
“We can afford it now!”
“Matt, baby, quiet down,” Sherry said as the brunette with wavy hair looked up and tried kissing her boyfriend’s arm as his whole body rose to a sitting position.
“Sherry, this is important.”
“Matt, one of my credit cards just refunded me for over-billing. A two-hundred fifty dollar check just came in the mail!” “I don’t understand why you had to interrupt us,” Sherry insisted, as she sat up and began sucking on Matt’s neck. The sheets on Matt’s bed rose at a point that made it all too obvious what was going on underneath.
Matt pulled her away. “Baby, this means I can run for Student Body Vice President!”
Sherry looked disinterested. “Let’s call it the slumber party and go back to sleep,” she said as she tried doing just that.
Tyler looked at Matt, and, with a shrug, said “Why not?”
Felix Blair, the Senate President Pro Tempore, really disliked boring Agenda Committee meetings. Held the Monday evening before each Student Senate meeting, there really wasn’t much to talk about.
Virtually all of it was administrative, and tonight was not an exception. And the sad fact of the matter was that the agenda usually is amended at the start of each Senate meeting anyway, making most of their work useless. Most of the Agenda Committee members felt the same way. That is why this A.C. meeting last about fifteen minutes, and it took that long only because someone was trying to bypass the Judiciary committee and bring a bill directly to the floor.
As he left the meeting room, he decided he wanted to buy a drink from the coffee shop on the first floor of the student union. Michelle Green, an APC for the New Democracy party, met him at the stairs.
“Can we talk?”
“Sure, Michelle. Care to walk with me to the Java Place?” The two of them began walking down the stairs. As they got off the stairs, Felix resumed the conversation with a “What’s up?”
“Well, Michelle Kwan, our liason to the Asian Student Union, says the Challenge Party went to their meeting tonight and announced that the ASU Vice President, Kyoung Xue, was endorsing their party and becoming their candidate to represent the College of Pharmacy.”
“Don’t I know it. Worse, Larry says we are going over-budget and may not get all the money we expected to from his contacts in the local law practices.”
“This is NOT good.”
When they arrived at the coffee shop, Felix noticed a pile of flyers cluttering up one of the only tables. Felix went over to the table and picked up one of the flyers. It looked just like one of the NDP’s campaign flyers, in gold, except it wasn’t. On it read, “New Depravity Party: New Party, Same Old Corruption.”
The guy in the gray italian suit looked like a pimp straight out of the 1970s. However, his small lapel pin that looked like a blue candle gave away the fact that he was no pimp at all. He just dressed that way to get attention. Matt Ackison, the former lobbying director for the Student Government, just hated this meeting. Tonight was suppposed to be the night in which he meets the person that Grayson Kearns placed on the Challenge Party ticket for student body treasurer, instead of Matt.
The Tri Epsilon house of fraternity boys at Gainesville University was the site of most Challenge Party meetings, given the fact that Grayson Kearns was a brother of Tri-Ep. It was a relatively modest frat house in both size and population, but has been instrumental in keeping the other houses in line politically. That is, until recently.
The reason Grayson pushed Matt off his ticket was that his liasons in the other fraternities and sororites had told him that keeping them under one party this time was much more difficult than merely tapping their leadership into the Blue Candle Leadership Honorary. In fact, as Grayson learned, as many as half of the houses could swing to the New Democracy party if he wasn’t careful. And one, the “honors” fraternity, could even tip to the Liberal party.
Grayson, a chubby man of average height, sipped his Coca-Cola as he tapped his feet under the table in the living room. Grayson, Matt, and a few others were waiting for the treasurer candidate, who was stuck in traffic on Hellenic Road.
The spacious living room had large couches and a virtually panoramic window allowing the Challenge party leaders to watch for the green SUV that they were expecting. “I see them!” exclaimed Kristin Myler, the official chairwoman of the party.
Sure enough, the green SUV was slowly getting through the traffic jam. It pulled into the left lane in an effort to speed up their arrival. Unfortunately, what happened next looked almost like a movie to those in the Tri-Ep living room, who were helpless to stop it.
A pickup truck pulled out of one of the nearby frat houses and didn’t see the SUV heading the wrong way. The two vehicles collided.
. . . to be continued