Trivial Pursuit card features dean as golfer’s body double

Chronicle Staff

Walk into Upper School Dean Canh Oxelson’s office and it will greet you from the edge of his desk, where it is often picked up and examined by students, faculty, or Oxelson himself.

The glass box that encases it glints in the soft light of standing lamps, preferred by Oxelson over the school’s standard fluorescent bulbs. What is it? Why does it merit the protection of a case, the honor of a position on his desk, the admiration of those who visit the office?

To those with no familiarity with board games, the answer is simple.

“It” is a small white card, with colored circles coupled with a list of bullet points.

The final one reads, “Who does Canh Oxelson charge as much as $3,000 to impersonate at corporate golf outings?”

Curious, they might coo, before dismissing it from their minds. But to those who have ever held those cards and wracked their brains for the answer, the card is more.

Oxelson, upper school dean, Oprah Winfrey guest and Tiger Woods double, is now also the subject of a Trivial Pursuit question.

Becca Title ’08 discovered the card while playing the 2003 Genus edition of the game with friends.
“Had Becca not played this game and pulled this card, I would never have known,” Oxelson said. “I could have died a lonely old man without knowing I was a part of American pop culture.”

Because his body double job was featured in Sports Illustrated and is thus a matter of public record, Hasbro did not need to consult Oxelson to use his name in the game.

Once Title showed him the card, however, he called the company and received an official letter congratulating him for being in the game.

“How crazy would it be if I had been playing for the winning pie and picked that card?” he asked. “I probably would have died of a heart attack right then and there.”

His initial reaction was absolute disbelief, except for the fact that he had the card in his hands, Oxelson said.

His next thought was that he was on candid camera or that a student was tricking him.

“I wouldn’t have been surprised if a student Photoshopped the card to play a joke on me. I know kids like to give me a hard time,” he said, before shaking a finger. “I’m being punk’d!”

After finding the card, Title showed it to her dean Beth Slattery, who in turn showed it to Oxelson.
He asked Title to write a short paragraph on how she discovered it, which he said he would frame with the card alongside a photo with her.