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The Daily Tar Heel

Get a Sense of Humor, Clemson

Turns out The Daily Tar Heel doesn't serve just our University. Nope, the Clemson University community also reads the DTH. A bunch of angry Tiger fans didn't appreciate me knocking their school last week. A slew of them sent me disgruntled e-mail.

And here it is. You've got mail, re: last week's Clemson column. In italics are the best and the (not-so) brightest e-mails I received, with my thoughts interspersed. I've omitted names, but I promise it's their words, verbatim.

Dave, What an insightful article/editorial. You are quite the journalistic talent. I'm sure the Washington Post is banging your door down as we speak. How did Time Magazine rate Clemson as the #1 Public University in the country and not UNC? I tell you what, send him a copy of your article and I'm sure he'll adjust the rankings...

Reading this e-mail, I felt like John Madden spotting road signs for an all-night bargain buffet. I'd found this week's column. First, who's Dave? Second, when did Time Magazine become a guy? I'd write more, but the New York Times just called.

...Our coach doesn't make rude comments about opposing cheerleaders. Another good example of class. On that same note: Take a look in the mirror do you really think you stand a chance getting a date with a Duke cheerleader? I doubt it!

Now that's a classy line. What, you don't think they'll swoon at the sight of my '96 Mercury Sable? If ever so "lucky" to date a Dookie, I won't spare any expense. I'll let her super-size.

It's interesting that as tough as Clemson's current head coach has had it, he's 2-1 against the Tarholes in Clemson. We'll lose take losing to you in the Dean dome every year until the second coming of the ice age as long as we continue to own you on the football field.

P.S. Just wondering if you knew my Future wife ...she's also from Framingham.

Yeah, I wave to her on the corner all the time. Does this guy expect a serious response? FYI: That's not how to spell our name. It's Tar Holes. Two words.

My respect for the Tar Heels continues to go ... (you are a writer with much imagination Dan, you finish it.)

...on vacation in the Bahamas? Grocery shopping at an all-night Harris Teeter? On dates with Duke cheerleaders?

Clemson University once used the "Country Gentleman" as a mascot in addition to the Tiger... I see now why you would not want to attend school at Clemson -- you certainly would not fit in at a school where respect and civility are treasured.

You've got a better chance to see Coach K beat Dean Smith in a Chapel Hill mayoral election than me attending a school with a civil mascot.

That's more boring than televised quilt-knitting. I mean, would a basketball referee ever eject a "country gentleman?"

You're ... a know it all junior in college who thinks he's writing for a widely distributed urban, northeastern newspaper.

Actually, I thought the only people reading my column were A, on campus, and B, my parents. Your letter confirms otherwise.

In all, I am sure you will graduate with your degree in journalism and go off and write some stirring article on "Plant Life in the Australian Outback" that gets published in Airways magazine.

Actually, it'll be a three-part series for US Airways on South African topography during solar eclipses.

I would like to thank you for confirming every stereotype I've ever had of UNC students/fans ... You have saved me countless hours of trying to convince myself that no group of people can be that arrogant. By the way, it is apparent that the course in "losing with grace" has not found its way into your studies. I suggest you enroll at once.

Glad to help. Promise me you'll be productive in those "countless hours" I saved you by attending a tractor pull, or weed whacking.

As for the class, I opted for "Blatantly biased, jesting columns in college newspapers that no one in their right mind takes seriously," a course I highly recommend for you and the rest.

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When I finished sifting through the messages my jaw was resting on the spacebar. Turns out Clemson graduates can read and write! Seriously though, what shocked me was their serious reaction to an obviously flippant column.

Does anyone actually think that something as ordinary, as big-picture meaningless as the result of a Clemson-UNC game would persuade me to lock myself in a phone booth with Dick Vitale? Or think about Margaret Thatcher naked on a cold day?

Did you react -- chuckling, cringing, vomiting, whatever -- to that last sentence? I laughed while writing it. Such a preposterous thought, how could you not? And that's why I wrote it.

First and foremost, this paper serves UNC, the audience for whom I write. How could anyone take anything I wrote last week as more than a passing shot?

Would I be so shook up over a basketball loss, I'd made it all better by knocking another school?

That column was facetious. This week's style is more tongue-sticking-out than tongue-in-cheek. I promise, though, both are in good fun.

If you remember anything from my columns, let it be that last sentence.

For your sake, don't have it be about a former British prime minister naked.

Write Dan, a junior history major and journalism and mass communication major from Framingham, Mass., at, and he'll include you in next week's column.

Special Print Edition
The Daily Tar Heel's 2023 Year in Review Issue