Brother Alex Gets A HaircutFriday, February 10, 2012
Because Brother Edwin had recently had undergone a triple bypass operation I had decided to ask Brother William Nick, C.S.C. who is in charge of St. Joseph for accommodation. So I told Brother Edwin, “ I hope you don’t mind that I went over your head.” His reply (with that “oh, gosh’ smile of his was, “You didn’t.” Brother Edwin is ample proof that those old initials RHIP still holds true at St. Edward’s. For those who do not know it, the initials stand for rank has its privileges. On another day I was chatting with on-campus food manager, Michael Smith who told me, “When I want to cut the red tape I always deal with Brother Edwin.”
As soon as dinner was over (spaghetti and meatballs, boiled peas, salad, lemonade, and ice cream for dessert) Brother Edwin told me, “It seems you have not gotten a hair cut since I last saw you a year ago. You look like a hippie. We need to clean you up.” He gesticulated in the direction of the barber room (he’s the official barber in those parts) and I realized that there was nothing I could do about it. The operation took about 6 minutes.
That whole weekend I dressed in black, - brand new black jeans, a black turtleneck and a black blazer. Wherever I went (my glasses helped) I was greeted with “Good morning, brother.” In most of the Class of 62 (I was class of 61) homecoming events I sat with the brothers. I was asked to do so. A couple of days later I received handshakes and greetings at all times of the day by one of the university vice-presidents. I have to confess that I felt most flattered.