Monday, May 2, 2016

Alpha Psi

 Toward the end of my Junior year at PC, I was invited to join Alpha Psi Omega Honor Dramatic Fraternity.  One had to accrue points from being in or working on plays.  I was already a member of Delta Psi Omega from my work at Anderson College, and those points transferred to PC.  At that time, I was the only person in South Carolina to hold both memberships.  I guess that was a big deal.
 Everyone had heard about the initiation into Alpha Psi.  We heard about the ritual, and how hard it was.  Each person had to memorize a passage from a work by Shakespeare, and it had to do something with the Theatre.  I chose a part of "Hamlet".  I crammed and memorized it, but I have never been a fan of Shakespeare, because his language is very difficult to learn.  They had the initiation at night, and we had to stand outside until our name was called to enter the Black Magic Theatre.  I was sweating bullets, as every candidate was.  We had heard that if we messed up the soliloquy, that we would be rejected. 
 My name was called, and I entered the dark theatre.  There was a small light on the Alpha Psi members seated behind a table.  They made it seem very scary.  Imagine a haunted house.  That was the ambiance.  I was more nervous about something than I had ever been before.  They asked me to perform my passage.  I guess I did okay, but I really don't remember.  I was too scared.  They preyed on your emotion.  After I finished, they all gave critiques.  They were very cruel.  Then the vote came, and I was unanimously voted in.  I found out later that everyone got in that were nominated, and the critiques were all an act. 
 The next year, I got to sit behind that table and do the same thing to those candidates that had been done to me the year before.  After that night of initiation, they put a star beside my name in all of the programs noting that I was a member of Alpha Psi Omega, and I was included on a special page in my Senior yearbook.  It turned out to be a big deal.

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