Friday, February 7, 2014

We're Number 29!

Welcome to the former jungle

So it will be interesting to see how the UMass PR flacks handle this one.

On the one hand, you want to play down anything pertaining to the "Zoomass" image -- especially on a Friday. But on the other hand it could be worse -- far worse -- as in Umass could have made the (coveted by some, dreaded by others) Top Ten.

And a generation ago UMass would have topped that list.

Although the flaw in this survey is it only covers "on campus" incidents and in Amherst -- a unique "college town" -- the major problem is the off campus rowdyism fueled by alcohol.

But it is getting better.


Anonymous said...

clearly the party has moved to PA and WI. What a weird trend. It would be interesting to see how the picture changes for the country if you capture those off campus arrests you spoke of.

Dr. Ed said...

Years back, Barbara O'Connor made a point at a public meeting about this sort of thing -- the problem with arrest statistics is that they don't show the number of times that an officer was able to resolve the situation without having to arrest someone.

I don't see a relationship between problematic student behavior and place on this list -- UNH is #20 -- it's worse than UMass? UNH???

No, this rating tells parents the likelihood that Junior will wind up with a criminal record instead of a college degree -- it's the sort of thing that causes parents of "good" kids to lean toward selecting a different school -- something I do (and am) greatly encourage.

Dr. Ed said...

Larry, you do know that UMass once made Number THREE in "long lines and red tape" don't you?

And as to the comment about the party moving to WI -- I believe they included OUI arrests in this statistic and the State of Wisconsin has a serious problem with that.

They have a completely different attitude toward beer out there....

Walter Graff said...

What's there to say. Kids drink. Kids get stupid. Kids get arrested. Take 20,000 of them and stick them together and statistically you are going to have more arrests than in a town where they aren't living in herds without parental guidance. It's part of growing up and finding ones place in the world. It's been that way since colleges were organized. Get used to it.

Dr. Ed said...

Walter, I believe it's per capita, not total arrests. It's the percentage of students who get arrested and that varies.

I also noticed that UConn, where Barbara O'Connor now is, didn't make the list.

Anonymous said...

Notice how about 47 of the institutions are Public and only 3 Private. Probably says more about how the campus authorities handle drinking on a private vs a public campus.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah I was pretty confident Amherst College would not make the list (even with the Crossett Christmas incident).

Anonymous said...

The smart kids don't go to public schools. Another reason its 95 percent public schools that have the issues. No you won't find Amherst or Yale on the list. Kids that go to the better schools have other ways of dealing with life other than escaping. No the rich kids are just as screwed up, but they have more drive to be successful in life than play around like public school kids. What is it I've heard said about Umass, it's more like a four year community college.

Anonymous said...

@anon 8:06

I went to both a public college and a private college and then received graduate degrees from one of each. So I have some direct experience with both these type of schools. Your broad based slur against public college students is just a generalization. Let's see.. didn't Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric got to UMass; Ben Cherrington, Red Sox general manager; Ricard Gere, actor; etc.? There's probably several dozen other successful graduates who "have more drive to succeed" if I thought about it for awhile. At the public college I went to, the vast majority there were pretty driven to succeed because they knew it was their one chance to escape poverty or create a better life for themselves. At the private college I went to (where I held 2 jobs to pay for it), most of the well off students were just partying their way through school waiting until they went to work for daddy.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Ben Cherington went to Amherst (and so did Dan Duquette).

Dr. Ed said...

No. Harvard kids are STUPID. I watched a bunch of them damn near drown in three feet of water one night.

They'd gone out onto the wharf with their professor to see the phosphorescence in the water, which they got to see quite a bit of when several of them fell into the water. It's what tends to happen when one walks off the side of a wharf, which is why one doesn't do that sort of thing.

If they'd gone off the other side, they'd been in 4-5 fathom of water, but this was the side with the boat ramp and they were in maybe three feet of water.

As in "stand up and walk ashore", a point I made quite vocally, but those idiots were going to drown. I had to go in after them.

No folks, the kids who go to the private schools aren't inherently any brighter.

Anonymous said...

Sure, Ed. That's why you need top SAT score to go to Harvard or Amherst.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately SAT scores have little to do with intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the real measure of a persons intelligence not how many mythical creatures from Greece someone can name. Perhaps that is why folks in Amherst need help screwing light bulbs in.

Anonymous said...

How on earth do you have time to eat (or make blog comments) between all your heroics, Ed? If you keep it up, you're going to make me swoon.

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 9:55 PM Check your facts!

From the UMass website:

George "Trigger" Burke '56
Forward, Boston Celtics 1956-57

Marcus Camby '96
Professional Basketball Player

**Ben Cherington '97
Red Sox General Manager**

Victor Cruz '09
Wide Receiver, NY Giants

Gary DiSarcina '90
Boston Red Sox

Julius Erving '86
Forward, Philadelphia 76ers, inducted into Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993

Danielle Henderson '99
Olympic softball player

James Ihedigbo '07
New England Patriots
Robert Meers '66

Football Player, Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers, CEO Reebok

Rick Pitino '75
Head basketball coach at University of Louisville

Jonathan Quick '09
Goalie for L.A. Kings and U.S. Olympic Hockey Team

Briana Scurry '95
Former goalie, US Women's National Soccer Team

Dr. Ed said...

Standing in three feet of water isn't my definition of "heroics."

Unpleasant, yes, but not heroic. That term I'd reserve for something like what I did another night, in downtown Amherst.

If you keep it up, you're going to make me swoon.

You I would have let drown. It's called "The Darwin Award."

Dr. Ed said...

Sure, Ed. That's why you need top SAT score to go to Harvard or Amherst.

Last schmuck who said that to me had gone to Amherst and just happened to have graduated from high school the same year as I. So I asked him what his SAT scores had been, which (while respectable) were considerably less than mine.

And that's all I'm going to say.

Anonymous said...

...not heroic. That term I'd reserve for something like what I did another night, in downtown Amherst.

What's the name of the award for someone who doesn't realize he's being made fun of (or better yet, DOES realize it but still can't help himself), and plays right into it, reinforcing the very trait that makes him look like such a fool?

Anonymous said...

So let's see. You've got higher SAT scores than others who were admitted to Harvard and Amherst. You've got more degrees than someone who runs the school system. And somehow, you just can't get anywhere.

What does that tell you? That the world is horribly unfair? Or that you're simply a loser?

Don't worry -- I don't expect an answer, because "that's all I'm going to say."

Nina Koch said...

Well, I will answer you 6:22. What it tells me is that you're really mean.

You would never say that to somebody's face. I am so sick of people using social media to be mean.

I don't agree with anything Ed says and I find some of his posts to be remarkably offensive, but they should be countered with information, not anonymous snark.

I decided to start commenting on Larry's blog because I felt someone should stand up to Ed and the other people making false statements. Now I also think I should stand up to you, whoever the hell you are. Don't call someone a loser. Don't taunt an easy target. It's just plain mean.

Kurt Geryk said...

It's very possible that this blog is broken and can't be fixed, or that maybe it never worked to begin with.

Meanness and name-calling are part and parcel of this blog, and encouraged by the administrator when he has engaged in name-calling himself in both posts and comments, (but not to their face, however, as far as I know,) and when he chooses to publish off-topic, mean, personal attacks by anonymous commentators. The tone set by the administrator and his usual commentators unnecessarily exacerbate the sense of conflict and tension that exists in this town.

This way of communicating doesn't work!

I believe that this blog has a negative overall effect on our town's climate, (which makes some happy,) and probably has had an adverse effect on reaching desired directions and outcomes related to many of the administrator's pet issues and concerns.

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Exactly what THEY said when they tried to shut down Catherine Sanderson's blog -- a CLEAR violation of the First Amendment.

You don't like what I write or publish? Then start your own blog; you know kind of what a couple of folks unsuccessfully did to counter Ms. Sanderson.

The answer to BAD speech (and God help us if you are the arbiter of what that is) is not censorship, but MORE speech -- of the GOOD kind.

Kurt Geryk said...

Calm down, I didn't say we should shut down your blog or engage in censorship. You don't take criticism very well.

I'm saying that your posts nearly always degenerate into anonymous name-calling, and that you engage in the name-calling too, and I believe that the existence of your blog probably has an adverse effect on Amherst and the direction you'd like to see your pet issues go. Where you got the idea I was suggesting we call in the feds and revoke your 1st Amendment rights, I just can't imagine.

And actually I believe I DID answer "BAD speech" (constant name-calling) with "more speech"... exactly what you advocate.

And I don't feel a need to "counter" with a blog of my own (that would be a complete waste of my time.)

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Geeze Kurt, if blogs are such a "complete waste of time" how come your School Superintendent wife told the Amherst Bulletin in a front page story that she was starting one come the end of January?

Which ended over a week ago by the way.

Kurt Geryk said...

I didn't say blogs are a complete waste of time, I said that to "'counter' (your blog) with a blog of my own" would be a complete waste of MY time ("counter" was your language.) Not to say that other people's blogging efforts are not a complete waste of time, in my humble opinion.

But this conversation is getting stupid, way off topic, and also super sarcastic...par for the course! My gosh, I was simply trying to continue the conversation, state an opinion and offer a small critique of one of Amherst's popular news and opinion sources.

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Gee thanks. (I think.)

Kurt Geryk said...

Also, the comments that you post about your opinions on the first amendment and free speech and censorship always sound cliched.

Larry Kelley said...

Probably because I have to use them so often against folks like you.

Kurt Geryk said...

By the way, I found the Superintendent's blog, first entry January 28th, 2014, in about 30 seconds.

Larry Kelley said...

I guess she needs to promote it more.

Maybe have her fake Twitter account tweet links.

Kurt Geryk said...

Yeah. Good one. So glad you decided to keep living here.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah, I'm sure you are. (sarcasm requires its own special font.)

The other cliche I live by: "Comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable."

Obviously I'm doing my job.

Ripping you off one dollar at a time said...

Oh come on people, let's the Geryks gloat, will you please?

I mean, they're winning --> BIG <--

and you, well, aren't.

Cap'n Rick Hood has the Midas


You know who,


Nina Koch said...


Can you clarify whom you consider to be the "comfortable" people who need afflicting?

Are you defining comfortable in terms of complacency?

Larry Kelley said...

Certainly not talking about you Nina. I think they know who THEY are.

The Juggernaut said...

There are many differences between public schools and private schools.

The largest in Mass is this; public schools can't but alcohol. That means no in-dorm parties, when we want to threw them. Back at UMass, we would occasionally go off to visit friends elsewhere. What I saw, firsthand, is that the alcohol in the dorms kept students there.

Secondly, the police were also very lenient with law enforcement. If you want proof, take a look at the Amherst College ambulance calls for medical assistance with regards to alcohol. They are proportionally much higher than UMass, yet their arrest records are low.

So many ambulance calls for ETOH...yet low arrest records... a very interesting correlation. But image brings money, and one must preserve it!

Kurt Geryk said...

Larry, Nina didn't ask if you were talking about her. She wondered how you interpret the quote. I'm baffled too. Do members of my family deserve "affliction"? (merriam-websters: "something that causes pain or suffering")

Nina, of course he won't answer the question you asked. He obviously doesn't mean the MOST "comfortable" members of our community...those are some of his chums. They're exempt from Larry's campaign to "disinfect" Amherst, and to cause pain and suffering on those he deems too "comfortable".

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Kurt, your wife is Amherst's highest paid employee and overseer of an empire that consumes more than a majority of the total town budget.

I think she can handle a little "affliction" from time to time.

(Although I'm beginning to wonder how she handles you.)

Nina Koch said...

but you said "comfortable" people need afflicting. I haven't heard where the comfortable part is. I don't believe that people who are subject to a relentless stream of criticism are especially comfortable, whatever their salary.

Maybe you just need a different quote.

This doesn't mean that I believe we should just accept everything. I believe in questioning authority (it was my first bumper sticker!). But the questions should come from a place of inquiry. The questioner should be prepared to listen to the answer before framing the next question. And it should truly be a question, not an affliction.

Larry Kelley said...

Actually Nina my prime directive (in a Star Trek sort of way) is, "To seek out truth and report it."

Bringing affliction to those who deserve it usually goes hand-in-hand, since THEY specialize in secrecy.

Why did Rob Detweiler suddenly disappear?

Kurt Geryk said...

Larry, you pick and choose who you inflict pain and suffering on, that's part of the reason why this blog doesn't work.

The Chief of the APD makes a decent salary, he oversees a large budget, he doesn't give you all the info you want to have... will we see you "afflicting" the Chief and his staff as often as you "afflict" the school administration in the near future?

You afflict little private business guys and gals often (and even if what they do is entirely legal but you just don't like it,) but when it comes to the biggest business owners, the ones who own a majority of the town, you find no reasons to "shine your light", there's apparently no "truth to seek out and report", in fact you only sing their praises.

Again, all I was saying is that this blog has a negative overall effect on our town...and a big part of the reason for that is the double standard you employ.

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Give me an example by name.

Are you talking about Barry Roberts?

If so, what is your problem with him? (besides jealousy of course.)

Kurt Geryk said...

I don't have a problem with any one in particular...but of course I don't go out looking for things and people to have a problem with. You are missing the point, as per usual.

It gets personal with you, including meanness and name-calling, beyond just "seeking the truth and reporting it". You bully people, and your highly selective about it. That's part of what has a negative effect on the town, and was the PRIMARY element that HUNDREDS of residents noted to consultants as being a major hindrance to getting national candidates to come and work here. I personally know of two highly qualified people who decided to not make a go at it here, specifically citing your's and Sanderson's blogs and the negative culture they nurture.

Just look at the nastiness directed toward Monica Hall recently by a slew of parents... (and then they ask "Why can't THEY keep a principal at Fort River?") YOU and your blog and the ugly, personal, mean things you allow to be published on it, (often by people who live far away with no stake in Amherst's future,) have been a major factor in creating a culture in Amherst that so many find unappealing.

Kurt Geryk

Larry Kelley said...

Well Kurt, I attended the Amherst police presentation at the High School last night concerning "cyber bullying", did you?

Feel free to report me to the police. It didn't work out too well when FIVE School Committee chairs tried that with Catherine Sanderson's blog.

We have something in America called the First Amendment. And it gets rough and tumble sometimes.

"If you can't stand the heat ... "

Larry Kelley said...

Speaking of blogs, do you have the URL for School Superintendent Geryk's blog? I can't seem to find it.

Why chimps destroy mirrors said...

" that's part of the reason why this blog doesn't work."

Are you fking kidding me Geryk?

You see how many friggan people read this blog???!

What the hell is wrong with you?

Yours, hers and theirs,