Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Cairo Salukis

I knew that southern Illinois was called "Little Egypt" I knew its "capitol" was called Cairo (pronounced "Kayro".)

But I never dreamed that there was a football team called the Salukis.

7 comments:

Matthew from Missouri said...

My uncle raised salukis in the mid to late 60's in St. Louis. He actually donated two, out of a litter of 13, to the school as mascots. He gave one to our family also. Still, the most incredible dog I have ever been around.

H. Houlahan said...

Watching a televised dog pageant recently (my keeper had stepped out -- I am not normally permitted to agitate myself in this manner), I "learned" many amazing facts about dogs that I did not know -- such as, "Soft-coated wheaten terriers are sheep-herding dogs." Among them was that the the saluki is a kind of dog "best-known as" the mascot of Southern Illinois University.

The things you learn from the dog-pageant announcers!

Reid Farmer said...

During a couple of summers in college, I worked in nature education for the Memphis Park Commission. One of my co-workers and a fellow Memphian, Tippie Cook, played tight end for the SIU Salukis. Actually a number of Memphis athletes went up to SIU to play. It's really not that far away.

Of course you know the mascot for Northern Illinois University is the Huskies!

Reid Farmer said...

I've been through Cairo (Kayro) several times. It's not far from New Madrid (MAD-rid)

Reid Farmer said...

I should have mentioned in the last comment that New Madrid is across the river in Missouri (Miss-ur-ah). Other notable towns nearby are Cape Girardeau (Jur-ah-dah) and Hayti (Hay-tie - at least they put the y in to help). My family comes from that part of the world and it amazes me to see the originality with which they attacked pronunciation of place names.

I was born just south of there in Jonesboro (Joan-burr), Arkansas after all. Jonesboro has a small suburb named Bono (Bone-oh - NOT like the rock star). Bono is easy enough to say, but the original name of the town was Bonnersville. Bono was about as far as the locals were going to go in saying that name and eventually the town capitulated.

There is a semi-apochryphal story that after the Louisiana Purchase as the new territories were being laid out, that the dangling southeastern end of Missouri (known as the bootheel)was originally going to be part of Arkansas Territory. If you look on a map, the east-west line that forms most of the northern border of the state went straight across to the Mississippi River.

The people who lived in the bootheel were unhappy with this because Arkansas was known as a very unhealthy place with endemic malaria and yellow fever. They successfully petitioned to become part of Missouri as they knew it would be better for their health as Missouri was known for its salubrious and healthy climate.

Chas S. Clifton said...

Back when my sister owned a farm near Cape Girardeau, I went through Cairo a few times. Seems like a good place to go if you want to disappear.

Dan & Margaret said...

I'm just the opposite of Steve... I knew about the SIU Salukis long before I knew about... Salukis!