Scott Fyall ’13 is one of those students that you just want to stop and talk to when you pass him on campus. On Thursday, I stopped him as he walked up the stairs of Griffin Hall to congratulate him on becoming this week’s “One in 2000.” We chatted for a few minutes and I warned him of the quirky questions that were bound to arise during our interview.
So you are from Dripping Springs, Texas?
This is true, yes.
Is it true that everything is bigger in Texas?
A lot of things are bigger in Texas. A lot of the food is different. One of the things I missed most coming up to Massachusetts was Mexican food. So I always make sure to stock up on Mexican food when I go home. Barbeque is just out of this world in Texas.
Doesn’t quite compare to a Frosh Quad barbeque?
The thing about barbeque … Barbeque at Williams College will constitute hot dogs and hamburgers. That’s not barbeque. You’ve got to have brisket and sausage and things like that. Frosh Quad is just a cook-out.
Anything else about Texas that’s different than what you’re experiencing here?
It’s definitely hotter. I remember two summers ago, there were 37 straight days of 100 degree plus weather. I don’t really miss that when I show up in August.
Do you like the snow?
I love the snow. My friends and I went to conquer Sheep Hill in the big leagues over Winter Study. I think I almost died about five times, but it was a lot of fun.
Any epic falls?
[Laughs] First of all, it takes a long time to walk up the hill so that’s a workout in and of itself. I went down and I remember hitting a bump while fully standing up almost, doing a front-roll and then my sled just went down the rest of the hill by itself. I got my friend to bring my sled back up to me as I recovered.
It was still a great time.
I’ve heard you are also obsessed with YouTube videos.
I wouldn’t say it’s an obsession, more of an appreciation.
What is the best video you have seen recently?
Oh man, I don’t know. Something about dogs probably.
So you’re a fan of the adorable puppy videos. What’s your overall genre of YouTube videos?
Well, I’m big into soccer highlight videos. I watch those all the time. Music videos, too. Every once in a while I watch the fail videos, even though they make me feel less intelligent every time I watch them. It’s just whatever happens to come up. I dabble in the YouTube.
“In the YouTube?” Taking a line from President George Bush like “the Google”?
[Fyall breaks out his stellar Bush impression] “My fellow Americans …” No. I dabble in YouTube, yeah. I’d put a song I’m listening to on Facebook or something like that. I’ve got a YouTube correspondence going on with my boy Charlie Cao [’13] as we try to one-up each other on videos. If I see something interesting, I’ll post it.
Is the President Bush impression part of the Texas thing?
A little bit. Especially when he was president and when he was governor, you kind of got used to the way he spoke and could pick up on the funnier side of his way of speaking. I’d say it’s a skill that Texans are adept at. It’s easier to pick up on since we’ve had so much experience with him.
Have a favorite quote?
[Fyall returns to his Bush accent] “There’s an old saying in Tennessee – I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee – that says fool me once, shame on – shame on you. Fool me – you can’t get fooled again.”
Does this relate at all to what you’re studying?
As far as a major is concerned, I’m studying history with a concentration in leadership studies. Looking at life after Williams, I’d love to get a masters degree at Georgetown University and pursue a career in the Foreign Service.
So you are looking down the road?
I’m looking down the road. Nothing is set in stone, but you’ve got to keep your eye on the prize.
Outside of the classroom, what are you doing at the College?
I’m really trying to expand my horizons. This past Winter Study, I worked at Berkshire Farms Center and Services for Youth and I had a lot of firsts out there in the wilderness. I went ice fishing. I kept my finger on the trigger for too long and the water splashed everywhere. I went cross-country skiing. I really just try to take advantage of being here at Williams. I want to get to Hopkins Forest at some point too. I just throw my hat into different things and see what’s out there.
You’re also a tour guide now, right?
Yes! I never went on a tour before coming to Williams. I went on my first tour the other day as part of tour guide training. So I was walking around and everyone kept looking at me like, “What are you doing?” So I just said, “Oh, I want to see if Williams is the right place for me.” The people in the group caught on because I would say hi to all the people that walked by me.
What’s your favorite course you have taken?
The man, the myth, the legend: Professor Paul K. MacDonald. I’m speechless. “Introduction to International Relations” was a fantastic class. We had a lot of ambitions going into our diplomatic simulation and I’d count that as a victory for the U.S. Paul K. is definitely up there. He’s going to read this and be like, “What?” I’d say all of my classes have been pretty great.
Professor Crowe told me that the political science professors read the Record during their Wednesday department meeting …
Well, I wouldn’t say it if I didn’t mean it. Professor MacDonald is a good guy.