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There was criticism by the administration and alumni of some of the yells. At one game Anderson dedicated a cheer to all the white girls who'd been dating black guys at UCLA. "O.K.," he shouted into the mike, "give me a big 'Spooks, Rah' on 2...."
He made up the popular Bruin chant: Bruin Hair Is Everywhere. When a referee called a penalty against the UCLA team, Anderson likened this to the ref shaving the Bruin. "We'd retaliate with a yell like, 'Oh, Schick!' "recalls Anderson, "and naturally we got called on the carpet. We changed it to 'Oh, Gillette!' It caused so much commotion I got a complimentary razor set from both Schick and Gillette. The next game I felt like yelling, 'Oh, Cadillac!' "
The UCLA student body is liberal (a girl asked by a friend about a boy may say, "He's great-looking, with dark curly hair," but she will never say he is black) and was ready for Anderson's innovations, but some visiting schools were not. Once at a basketball game a woman cheering for Duke became incensed and obscene when Anderson danced with one of UCLA's blonde song girls. "She was giving me a bad time," Anderson says, "so I stopped everything and went to the mike and said, 'This woman is trying to be heard, but we can't hear what she's saying through her white sheet.' "
Soul was right for UCLA two years ago but it would be wrong in 1968, Anderson believes. "The blacks and whites are more polarized now," he explains. "In 1966 we were on a more common ground. But not now—not when 14% of the people voted for George Wallace. There's no way you can put these things in a humorous light now."
This year UCLA voted for high-camp amusement—and cheers—from a head yell leader who wears a hippie hairdo, love beads and a Girl Scout badge. Geoff Cooper is hip but not a hippie. He is a talented television major who created and affects a character named Engineer Geoff—"If you love milk, apple pie, mother and the flag, you'll love the Old Engineer." It is steam power instead of Black Power.
In his campaign speeches Engineer Geoff promised to bring back all the old traditions that never were. "Geoff is just plain folks," his handbills read. "He appreciates a sunrise. He walks in beauty. Geoff Cooper is a man reaching out for a star."
He has modeled cheers on Peter Pan and Humpty-Dumpty. One of his favorites is:
Ki-ri ki-ri ki rickety bim!
"He was elected because he is a put-down to the normal cheerleader," says Mike Levett, editor of the Daily Bruin. "Geoff sought and got the apathetic vote. He was funny and different. The role of a cheerleader here has become one of entertainer. You have to be witty and have rapport with your audience. You talk, kid, tell jokes. Possibly the weakest part of Geoff's repertoire is his cheers." It was right in character for him to call on 80,000 people in the Coliseum to holler:
Peanuts, popcorn, onion soup