November 2009 Candygrams

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Friday, November 20, 2009---Practice: Early and a Movie: Late

As my husband and I were walking to Heritage Hall, I noticed several Sony trucks. Men were unloading equipment. I asked a Sony guard if a movie was being filmed on campus. He said that “Social Network” would be filming at night.

T.J. McDonaldJust as we were setting up, I asked an apparent football player, who was on his way downstairs, if he wanted a snack. With a smile, Freshman Safety T.J. McDonald came and took (what else?) a Starburst Gummiburst, gum and a Sour Punch. T.J. is majoring in Communications, and for fun he likes to play P53 video games. Call of Duty is his favorite. Since T.J.’s dad, Tim McDonald, is a former USC All-American and an All-Pro NFL player, I asked T.J. if he was able to be on the field when his dad was playing. T.J. said that when USC was recruiting him, he was able to be on the Coliseum sidelines. He also told me that his younger brother Tevin is a Senior at Edison H.S. where his dad coaches. Unfortunately, Tevin has signed a letter of intent with that school across town. Of course, Tevin can always change his mind. Trojan Candy is glad that T.J. is a Trojan! Fight On, T.J.!

Curtis McNealAnother football friend and fellow Freshman, Curtis McNeal, came by the desk. He took the “real” football treats of Nerds and Starburst Gummibursts. Curtis has come by the desk before with C.J.Gable, but I wasn’t able to interview him then. Curtis is from Venice Beach and is undecided in his major. He has many hobbies: playing video games such as Madden Football and Call of Duty, some surfing, paint ball shooting, and water skiing in Lake Castaic. I asked Curtis about the 6:00 a.m. practice this morning. With a big smile, he said that it was cold! Fight On, Curtis!

Football friends Sophomore middle-linebacker Uona Kaveinga, Joe Houston and Brice Butler came by to say “Hello” and to take their favorite treats. Joe came in with his friend, USC basketball player Leonard Washington. Leonard parked his bicycle near the desk, took a Laffy Taffy, and went upstairs. Joe stayed to visit and take a few treats. I asked Joe did he like having practice start at 6:00 a.m. this morning, and he said that it was “Really Cool!” What an “early bird!” Is Joe really a college student? When Leonard returned, the two of them rushed off. Moments later I found a headset and iPod on the desk. I knew that either Leonard or Joe had left it. Desperately looking outside for them to return, I saw Leonard riding his bicycle and Joe rapidly riding his skateboard back to Heritage. Joe RAN up the steps! It was Joe's Ipod. Phew!

Brice Butler said that he didn’t have breakfast, so he immediately took a Rice Krispie bar and ate it. Then, after TWO hugs, he took his favorite Mike and Ikes. As he left, I told Brice that he had a good game against Stanford, to have a nice Thanksgiving, and that I would see him in December after we beat the Bruins!

Nic CurryThe Track Team is in the house! With an apple in his hand, Junior Nic Curry, who runs the 100 and 200 meters, came by the desk for the first time. Nic, who is from South Hills H.S. in West Covina, is majoring in Psychology. His hobbies are playing sports, watching movies and listening to music. He left with his nutritious apple and a Ghirardelli chocolate square in his hands. Trojan Candy spoils them again!

Jana VyhnankovaWomen’s Rowing is in the house! A very quiet Sophomore Jana Vyhnankova came up to the desk with a big, pretty smile and took a Ghirardelli Hazelnut Square. She told Trojan Candy that she transferred from Czech University and came to USC because the coaching in America is better than in her home country. Jana, who is majoring in Psychology, rows on the starboard side. For a hobby, she loves to snowboard. She said that she can snowboard here and in Czechoslovakia. Fight On, Jana!

Ligita KaviereWomen of Troy Rowing Assistant Coach, Ligita Kaviere, took a Ghirardelli and a bag of M&M cookies. As an undergrad at USC she was on the team, and she majored in Policy, Planning and Development. Ligita, who is from Latvia, told Trojan Candy that her hobby is “giving everyone else a Hard Time!” Fight On, Ligita!

Women’s Golf is in the house! Friend Jennifer Song, who sees us weekly, took a Rice Krispie Treat and a bag of chocolate chip cookies. She said that she changed her major from Business to Psychology, and that her brother is at Carnegie Mellon Industrial Design School. When asked why she came to USC, she said that we were the shortest distance from her native Korea and that it was a direct flight! Thank goodness to LAX that she chose USC!

Valeria Pulido and Alison RamosWomen’s Tennis is in the house! Two tennis players came to the desk for the first time. Valeria Pulido, a Freshman from Cuernavaca, Mexico, is undecided in her major. Alison Ramos, a Junior from Troy H.S. in Carson, is majoring in Kinesiology. Fight On, Valeria! Fight On, Alison!

Two tour groups came to visit Heritage Hall. New Vista Middle School from Lancaster with teacher Mr. Beckerman were able to take football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball posters. The second middle school was Avia Goddard from Glendora.

Men’s Basketball is in the house! Our last friend for the day was Davis Rozitis. Davis tried, for the first time, Nerds and M&M cookies. Everything in America is new to him! When I asked him if he will be going home to Latvia during the holidays, he said, “No, but my mom will be coming to L.A. on December 26th.” As he left, I wished him a Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to all fellow Trojans who visit weekly at!

November 12, 2009---Homecoming Week and Heritage Hall was Bustling!

Before my husband and I could set up, C.J. Gable came to say “Hello.” He took a Reese’s, Rice Krispie Bar and a Starburst. I teased him about taking a bag of cranberries. With his usual lop-sided smile, C.J. told us that cranberries make his stomach hurt. (I know that he was teasing me back!) Then he said that he was late for his tap-dancing class! (Is he still teasing? Oh, well, if Matt Leinart can take a ballroom dancing class, then, C.J. can take a tap dancing class!) Dance On, C.J.!

Almost immediately, Brice Butler came to the desk, gave me a big hug, took his favorite Mike and Ike and left to meet someone on the patio. Brice said that he would be back.

Six new football friends came to the desk for the first time. So many new friends!

Rhett EllisonRed-shirt Sophomore Rhett Ellison, who is from Portola Valley, CA, took a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. He is majoring in International Relations, and his hobbies are playing drums and fly fishing. Rhett knew that Jeff Byers likes to fly fish also! Fight On, Rhett!

Garrett GreenGraduate student Garrett Green, who is from Sherman Oaks, is earning his MBA degree in Real Estate Development. Garrett’s positions are quarterback and wide receiver. For hobbies he likes to play video games, go to movies, and go to the beach. Fight On, Garrett!

Garrett NolanSenior Garrett Nolan from Northridge is majoring in Public Policy, Management and Planning. He is a center, and he likes all kinds of country music. Fight On, Garrett!

Ryan McMahonSophomore Ryan McMahon, who is from Diamond Bar, plays safety. His major is undeclared, and his hobbies include playing football and hanging out with friends. Ryan, you can hang out with your new friend Trojan Candy at Heritage Hall! Fight On, Ryan!

Spencer SpiegelJunior Spencer Spiegel is majoring in Sociology. He’s from Los Angeles, and his hobbies are reading and hanging out with friends. Spencer, you too can hang out with your new friend Trojan Candy at Heritage Hall! Fight On, Spencer!

Joe McKnightThe last new football friend was Joe McKnight. Joe has come to the desk two times before, but I never had a chance to interview him. The third time must be the charm! Joe, a Junior from New Orleans, stayed at the desk for several minutes “mulling over” what he wanted to write about himself. He told me that he knew fellow Louisianan basketball player Dwight Lewis before he came to USC. (Does USC have a Louisiana pipeline or not?) Joe, who is majoring in Sociology, took Nerds, Starbursts and Sour Punches. He finally wrote that he is a boring person and that his hobbies are walking slow and sleeping! Joe is definitely not slow on the football field! Nor is he boring to watch! Fight On, Joe!

Many football friends came by the desk for their favorite snacks or just to say “Hello.” Drew McCallister, Taylor Mays, Allen Bradford who checked out his TrojanCandy bio on my computer, Shareece Wright, Marshall Jones, Jeff Byers, Joe Houston, Jurrell Casey who had his cast removed, Nick Perry, and Boomer Roepke all came by. Fight On!

Now for the other sports.

Kate McFetridge and Trojan CandyWomen’s Crew: Good friend Kate McFetridge came by to get her favorite Taffy Apple lollipop, and she tried a bag of Craisins. I finally interviewed her! Kate is a Junior majoring in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. She is from Thorofare, New Jersey, and for hobbies she likes to ride horses and bake cookies. Kate told me that she will miss the Stanford game this weekend because she is traveling up north to try out for the National Women’s Crew Team. Good Luck and Fight On, Kate!

Shana WoodsWomen’s Track: Senior Shana Woods competes in the Heptathlon. She is majoring in Political Science with a minor in Sociology. For hobbies she likes to play PS3 and to watch movies. Shana told us that she attended Long Beach Poly High School, and that she attended a “Get Into Any College” presentation by my daughter Kelly and my son-in-law Gen when she was a H.S. Senior at Poly. What a small world! As Shana took a Sour Punch and a pack of gum, I noticed her long fingernails! Every other nail was either orange or painted with flowers. Beautiful! Fight On, Shana!

Marissa MinderlerMarissa Minderler is a Junior majoring in Kinesiology. She competes in “throws.” Marissa, who is from Santa Clara, said her hobbies are drawing and dancing. Fight On, Marissa!

Old friends Anniya Louis, Shalina Clarke and Elan Hilaire came by the desk to say “Hello.” Fight On, Ladies!

Women’s Golf: Coach Andrea Gaston told us that today was the last day of the “Dead Period.” She mentioned that three signed recruits are coming to Homecoming. She took a Starburst to see why so many football players like them and a bag of M&M cookies. Fight On, Coach!

Good “weekly” friends Inah Park and Jennifer Song came by for Juicy Fruit gum. They enjoyed seeing themselves on on my computer. I asked them if either of them know fellow shopper Devon Kennard. Both young ladies said, “No.” Perhaps they’ll meet shopping one day!

Women’s Volleyball: Alex Jupiter stopped by to say “Hello.” I wished her good luck in the game tonight versus #4 Washington. With her usual big smile, she thanked me. Fight On, Alex!

One tour group walked around the lobby. Middle school students from St. Gregory the Great School in Whittier toured the lobby. Their teacher Scott Valenzuela was able to take 40+ football posters for them.

Four interesting visitors came to the Heritage Desk: USC Hall of Fame Track Coach (1965-1984) Ken Matsuda stopped by to say “Hello.” I showed him his picture and story on my computer. With a smile, he read the article. Fight On, Ken!

Dayna WalkerDayna Walker, the USC Helenes Membership Chair, came to the desk and immediately asked if I was an Amazon/Helene. “Yes,” I said in amazement! She remembered me from last Homecoming when I walked over to the Helene’s Homecoming booth. Dayna is a Junior majoring in Economics. She is an SAS tutor, so she can come by weekly to the desk. She told me that her hobbies are yoga and cooking Italian/Mediterranean food. I told her that I would try to drop by the Helene’s booth on Saturday. Fight On, Dayna!

Bud HausleiUSC Business AND Law School alumnus Herman “Bud” Hauslein came to see Ron Orr and stopped by the desk. After earning his Law degree in 1955, Bud became a “small town lawyer in the big city.” After retirement, Bud became an author. He has donated his books to USC, the University of Chicago, and The University of Cambridge Libraries. You can check out his book Live to your Life Expectancy and Beyond in the Leavy Library. Fight On, Bud!

The fourth visitor was actually a Heritage Hall employee. Alpha Ursich has come by the desk before, but this time I was able to interview her. Alpha is the Game Management Secretary. Since August 1980 she has hired ushers and ticket takers for the Coliseum. Proudly Alpha told us that both of her daughters attended USC, and both were in the USC Band. Then, even more proudly, she told us that her grand-daughter is a Junior at USC now, and that she is in the Spirit of Troy! What a proud tradition! Fight On, Alpha!

Brice Butler

Our last visitor of the day was Brice Butler (8/20/2009). He came back! Luckily, I still had some Mike and Ikes left for him. Brice certainly enjoyed reading his interview article!

November 5, 2009---He Came Back!

I arrived at Heritage Hall at 1:00 p.m. because I had a Trojan Guild Board meeting in the morning. Two hectic hours ensued!

Nina Tyler and Liz OlearAs I was setting up, two young ladies were interviewing a football player in the lobby. When the interview was finished, the young ladies came to the desk for a treat. “Who was the player?” I asked them. “Malik Jackson,” they replied. I’ll have to interview him another time, I thought to myself. The young ladies work for, which is the USC News Station. Junior Liz Olear, who is from Canoga Park, is a member of the Women of Troy Track Team. She runs the 100, 200 and 400 and is majoring in Kinesiology. Her hobby is, what else?, Sports broadcasting! Her partner, Nina Tyler, is a Junior majoring in English. The Southern Californian’s hobby is, what else?, Journalism! Fight On, Liz! Fight On, Nina!

Seven new Football Friends came to the desk for the first time!

Anthony McCoyAnthony McCoy, who is a Senior tight end, took some Sour Punches (a true USC football player!) and Nerds. Anthony is from Fresno and is majoring in Real Estate. His hobbies are relaxing, playing video games, and chilling with friends. Anthony, you can “chill out” at the Heritage desk anytime with your new friend, Trojan Candy. Fight On, Anthony!

Derek SimmonsSenior defensive tackle Derek Simmons, who is majoring in Public Policy, Management and Planning, (a “real” USC football player’s major!) took a strawberry Laffy Taffy and Airheads (another true USC football player’s favorite treat!). Derek, who is from the Bay Area, told me he likes to play basketball as a hobby. Is Men’s Basketball Coach Kevin O’Neill reading right now? Fight On, Derek!

Justin HartJustin Hart (another Senior!) from West Covina is majoring in Political Science. Justin, who is a defensive back, took a citrus Bubblicious and Soft Batch cookies. He likes to draw for a hobby and loves to draw Spiderman! Fight On, Justin!

Allen NobleAnother defensive back (Is there a trend here?) Allen Noble took Starbursts, Air Heads and a Caramel Apple lollipop. Sophomore Allen is majoring in Mechanical Engineering, and his hobby, like Derek Simmons, is playing basketball! (Is Coach O’Neill online now?) Fight On, Allen!

Kevin GreeneFreshman linebacker Kevin Greene, who is from Oakland, plans to major in Communications. He told me that his hobby is (brace yourself, any female readers) cleaning up the house! Clean On and Fight On, Kevin!

Devon KennardDevon Kennard, a Freshman defensive end from Phoenix, will likewise major in Communications (Another true USC football major!). Devon told me that his hobby is (brace yourself again, ladies) shopping! Shop On and Fight On, Devon!

Malik JacksonMy seventh new friend today was Malik Jackson. Yes, he came back! Defensive end Malik is from Northridge. He is a Sophomore who is undecided in his major (Should I suggest USC football favorites Communications? or Public Policy, Management and Planning?). Malik’s hobbies are relaxing and playing video games! Fight On, Malik!

Weekly football friends who come by the desk to say “Hello” and possibly to take a treat were Brice Butler, who gave me a big hug and took a Mike and Ike; Joe Houston, who came to say “Hello;” Aaron Corp, who took Sour GummiBursts (this year’s football favorite!) and Starbursts; Drew McCallister, who took Sour Punches and GummiBursts; Michael Morgan, who just came by to say “Hello;” Jurrell Casey, who, with a cast on his right arm, took Sour Punches and cookies; C.J. Gable, who brought Justin Hart to the Heritage desk for the first time; and Adam Goodman, who, just as I was packed up to leave, politely lifted my boxes on and off my cart in order to get his favorite strawberry Laffy Taffy!

WHEW! All the football players that I just mentioned, and some that I may have inadvertently omitted, congregated on the carpet. Most of them stretched out, relaxed, and teased one another... incessantly! Then, just like that, they were gone to their meeting!

Now, for the ladies. Good friend Kate McFetridge came by with her usual big, beautiful smile, to say “Hello” and take her favorite Caramel Apple lollipop.

Inah Park, Jennifer Song, and Lily SalasLily SalasThree Women of Troy golfers came to chat and get some treats. Jennifer Song, Inah Park, and new friend Lizette Salas posed for a picture. Lizette, who likes to be called Lily, is from Azusa and is majoring in Sociology. Her hobbies are performing Latin dancing, bowling (she has a 130 average!), hanging out with friends, and shopping! No wonder that they are such good friends. As they walked away from the desk, Inah said, “Let's go shopping!” I wonder if any of the three of them have gone shopping with Devon Kennard?