Student Spotlight: Joe Wong
Once every few decades, there comes a man who reshapes the world we live in. A man whose mere presence dominates any room he enters. A man so powerful and gripping, you know that when you walk among him, you walk among the presence of a God. Well, there isn't anyone like that around right now, so we'll settle for Joe Wong.
For those of you who don't know Joe by his Mr. Rogers sweaters, 70's "greaser"-style hair, and pants usually only seen in retirement communities in Florida, he's that firm yet soothing voice that occasionally gives you the day's announcements before 3rd hour. Actually, Joe's presence on the announcements is mere luck... or fate as some might say, as his name was inadvertently put on the list of student announcers at the beginning of the year. Joe decided to go ahead and do them anyway, starting in February, because, as he put it, "What better an opportunity to share my love with the rest of the school?" After he realized that a few delinquent students weren't reporting for the dates they signed up for, Joe decided to share even more love, and do the announcements for more than his scheduled times. However, Joe claims that he's "not cheap," and in a Caesar-like show of humility by refusing the crown of "announcement king," refuses to do the announcements every day as so many would like, saying, "I don't want them to get too much of my love. I don't think they're ready for it."
Yet the announcements are only one of many Wong projects that in the past have included such plots as creating an Atheist Time-Out group. Joe's latest dream was achieved last Saturday, when he successfully obtained all 35 episodes of the old Fox TV show "Get A Life" starring Chris Elliott. This scheme got its genesis when Joe visited a Chris Elliott appreciation page on the Internet, and found people selling the episodes for as much as $70 for all thirty-five. Using his legendary powers of persuasion, however, Joe struck a deal with a Mr. William Buchtka of Fort Atkinson, WI: Buchtka's seven tapes containing the complete works of Get A Life for Joe's two tapes of Pee-Wee's Playhouse.
The trade was set for 9 A.M., Saturday, March 14th at Rummage-O-Rama, but was almost foiled as a delay caused Joe and his accomplice-in-crime Rob Riepenhoff to be 15 minutes late, missing the rendezvous. After sneaking into Rummage-O-Rama, the duo walked around yelling "Buchtka!" before finding their way to the office and paging the elusive Mr. Buchtka. It worked, as before you could say the "magic word," there he was: the middle-aged, fat, balding William Buchtka, wearing a pink t-shirt that read "Kitty."
Oh, the life of Joe Wong is an exciting one indeed. Like an inescapable labyrinth with many twists and turns, you never quite know where you're headed, and once you've entered it's impossible to get out. And like an overly-dramatic Underground article without a conclusion, when the ride finally stops you may ask "What the hell was that!?", but you know you liked it.
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