America, Countries

For Dog, For Country and For Yale

Yale’s Handsome Dan XIX is the best date I’d been on for years which is why I say For Dog, For Country and For Yale.

In fact I didn’t even know I was on one.

Handsome Dan has been the prestigious Connecticut university‘s sports mascot since at least 1890.

And before you start doing the math, Dan is, yes, the 19th Old English Bulldog mascot at the Ivy League University.

And he is the nephew of Dan XIIX who has decamped to New York.

Puppy love

Dan fan: Handsome Dan

HD XIX is still at the puppy stage, born a year last month, during Covid.

And he is making up for lost time by licking everyone he meets.

Either around the campus in New Haven or on the seat where we find him on the green.

A seat of learning if you will.

Animal magic

Hero: Yale alumni and Revolutionary martyr Nathan Hale

Yale, which dates back to 1701, boasts the oldest live collegiate mascot in the world.

Fair play though to fellow Ivy Leaguers Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, from where I’ve come.

They would have a job bringing a live bear to their events.

Ivy League

Oarsome: Ivy League sport

A word now on Ivy League universities…

There are eight across the north-west universities.

And the ivy comes from ivy-planting class days at Harvard in the 1800s.

While the Ivy League dates back to 1935 when it was picked up by a sports writer to explain the inter-universities rivalries.

Bulldog Day

Welcome: Yale

Handsome Dan may not be the only Bulldog when we visit, it is Bulldog Day, but he is the most important.

If you’re imagining a dog show of jowly-hounds in the hallowed halls of Yale then it’s a nice thought.

But it is the raft of lucky students who have been accepted as the next intake of students.

And who bunk down with current students while they give the university which was founded in 1701 a recce.

We’ll return to Yale when they realise that I would be enhance the pantheon which has included the Bushes and Clintons.

And thanks to our guide, senior Aidan from Arizona, who is off to Washington, for suggesting it!

Cost it up

Pool your talents: Yale

I’m sure Yale could waive the $79,370 costs of attending a university which opens doors to the best positions in life.

Although with aid it’s estimated at $17,549.

And for that you get to… well it would take longer than we have here but check out their prospectus.

I guarantee you’ll be taken by a church building where it’s all educational symbolism and secular stained-glass windows.

And a cathedral to the body, yes a many/floored gymnasium.

Not that we’d want Yale’s Handsome Dan XIX go on the treadmill.

We love him the way he is, cuddly and waddling around campus.

And so, I say again and with apologies for playing with your motto…

For Dog, For Country and For Yale

Alas, though, I have to give Dan a big slobbery kiss goodbye.

I’m back on the Amtrak to Boston. Huzzah!

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