Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Some Team Terminology; Seeking Nominations for New Terms!

Generation III Novice 8 at Racer Regatta 1999
Left to right: Jason, Aik, Anthony, Bob, Robin, BJ, Risto, & Joey

What Generation Are You? 

At some point in the first half of the history of MSU Crew, some of us started referring to different incoming novice teams as “Generations.” Specifically, I think the term emerged in talk among a couple of us varsity guys in the spring of 1999 as we attempted to make sense of how to classify the novices that were recruited during that season—would they be considered varsity in the fall, or would they still be novice? On a side note—of the 9 novices who joined in the spring, only Aik, Brian, and Jason remained to row the follow season. It was an easy call—of course they’d be Varsity.
Men's Novice III Victorious at SIRA 1999
...But a bunch of us started using the term "generation" to refer to when people started with the club. For example, those of us who started in 1996 were Generation I, those who started in 1997 were Generation II, etc.

There are a few exceptions—for example, the guys who joined the men’s club in the spring of 1999 were considered members of Generation III (no new guys joined the club in the fall of 1998). There are a few generational disputes, for example, a few people who started with the team in the fall of 1996 didn’t stay on through the end of the first year but returned to compete a year later (e.g., John and Jenny in particular)

In lengthy and redundant conversations with the “village elders” who establish and reify our venerated rituals, a couple of labels have emerged to describe some generations in particular. For example:

Generation I (1996-1997): The Inaugural Team. The reasons for this designation should be painfully obvious to even the most dimwitted individual.

Generation II (1997-1998): The Greatest Generation. An exceptional group of athletes/leaders joined the club in the fall of 1997.

Generation III (1998-1999): The Lost Generation. The first full year after the women’s club became an intercollegiate team under the Athletic Department. Following the split, the the two teams took on very different characteristics compared to the previous generations—as would be the case for many years to come, rowers at Murray State belonged to one of two very different types of organizations.

New Terminology: The Epoch

An epoch is defined as “a particular period of time marked by distinctive features; events;” or, “a point of time distinguished by a particular event or state of affairs.”

I propose that we designate four year intervals in the history of the rowing club at MSU as epochs . Thus,

Epoch The First: 1996-2000 (Generations I-IV).

Epoch The Second: 2001-2005 (Generations V-IX)

Epoch The Third: 2006-2010 (Generations X-XIV)

Epoch The Fourth: 2011-Present (Generations XV-XVI)

The Contest: Name Your Generation / Name Your Epoch

Several generations have de facto names emerging through conversations that were started years ago. But most don’t. Now is the time to right this in an official way. Also, to consummate our incorporation of the term “epoch” into our intergenerational vernacular, let’s name our epochs. Let’s do this by vote at Homecoming. In the meantime, propose your nominations to name the generation/epoch that you belong to.

1 comment:

  1. For Generation I, I nominate the a new name: "When the Ancient and Mighty Crew Gods Roamed the Earth."

    For Epoch The First, I nominate two choices: (1) "The Clinton Years." (2) "The Dying Days of The Cassette Tape."

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