Thursday, March 19, 2009

FSU Rules. Sort of. Well, at least for me.

James O. Born

All things FSU.

You all know I attended Florida State University and that I like to poke fun at my alma mater. Whenever I hear Stanford alumni refer to their school as “The Harvard of the west.” I reply that I attended the “Harvard of Leon County.” I recognize a southern state school doesn’t have the academic standards of say Yale, Princeton or Columbia. Well, maybe Columbia.

Yes, I know that the day I wrote this (two weeks ago) news came out about NCAA sanctions for a football cheating scandal. I will not defend them. I hate cheaters and don’t sell out my few ideals for the sake of a winning football season. Oddly there was a time I would’ve sold one of my children for a National Championship. But not anymore. Unless we get close again.

But right now I’m back to being a rabid FSU alum.

There are two reasons this. One is that this week I am returning to FSU to speak at The Florida Writers’ Book Fair sponsored by FSU this weekend. The event is held in conjunction with the 200th Anniversary of Darwin’s birth. I guess I could take that as either an insult or compliment.

The second reason I love FSU is that the newsletter, The FSU Times did a nice story on me a few weeks ago. Check it out here.

Another reason I'm high on FSU is that, as many of you know, my son, John, is currently attending FSU. Here we are this past Fal in front of the admin building.

So with all due respect to Paul and our ongoing jokes about FSU vs PSU, this week I’m all about Florida State.

Do any of you want to give a shout out to your alma mater? Feel free.
On a different note I want to extend congratulations to my friend Neil Plakcy for bringing home the Hawaii 5-O award from Left Coast Crime for his excellent police novel Mahu Fire. Neil is the vice president of the Florida Chapter of the MWA and does a stand up job there as well.


  1. University of Washington DAWGS. Yay!!!!

    Ahh, love the picture of you and John.

  2. A fine looking boy.

    My brother went to FSU.

    I went to a college that did not have a football team. Sometime in the 1920s some kid got injured and his family paid the school a boatload of money never to have football again. They've got lacrosse instead. Not the same.

  3. I was educated on the other side of the pond, which means that unless you went to Oxford, Cambridge or Hogwarts, no one on this side of the Atlantic has heard of the place. And in any case, I couldn't wait to get away from the seat of higher learning where I was incarcerated for three years! But lovely to see a photo of you and the son and heir, Our Jim.

  4. I was amazed at ow many photos I have of his sister and how few of him.

    Karen, what's the point of college without football? Next you'll say you guys didn't drink beer either.


  5. Oh, there was plenty of beer, Jim. Although these days the college is a dry campus because some kid got drunk and fell out a window and died a few years back.

  6. My College was the Royal Australian Air Force: that's my story and I'm stickin' to it. :-D They drank plenty there too...

    Jim! You're too young to be the father of such fine looking young man...

    Been busy. Cheers to all,

  7. Actually, Stanford alums refer to Harvard as "Cal East." ;-)

    As for FSU, I wish its fans, and Atlanta Braves' fans for that matter, would just stop it with the tomahawk chop/chant. Not because it is offensive to Native Americans, but simply because it is annoying.

    Karen, I assume the family of the kid who got drunk and fell out of the window didn't pay a boatload of money to the school to make it a dry campus, did they?

  8. So what does FSU sound like when verbalized?

    Spoken letters: F-S-U?
    J-lo-ish speak: F-Su?
    Expression of exhaustion after a long workout: Fffffsuuuu?

  9. i'm still wondering about all those free shoes.

  10. I agree with Anonymous about that mind-numbing, faux Native American tomahawk chant. Isn't that what the U.S. Army used to flush General Noriega out in Panama? Or was that Neil Diamond?

    Also, the University of Michigan's "Hail to the Victors" is annoying as hell, probably because they play and play and play it. Also, because until this season, the Weasels, I mean, Wolverines defeated Penn State virtually every year since the Spanish American War. is this for dated: The lyrics of "Victors" hail Michigan as "champions of the West."

    But back to FSU. Didn't that used to be an all-girls school?

  11. Maybe that is why we hit it off when we met two years ago, we are both Noles!

    All my degress are from FSU and I did not cheat to get them. I am glad that I went to FSU at the time that I did, 1981-1985. The football team was in their contender years, always lost to the Gators, but they always won their bowl game at the end of the year.

    Yet, the academics were and are underrated, which is why it is humble to be a Seminole.

  12. Maybe that is why we got along with each other when we met 2007, ALL my degress are from FSU.

    I can't read anything about the football scandal and i hate to see Bobby's final years appear as scandalous as Nixon, Clinton and Dan Rather's final years. Ouch.

    Yet, FSU academics were/are underrated. Ever take advantage of the Florence, Italy program? Seminoles are among the Florentines, the Ivy League schools had to be bussed in.