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UBC Publications

UBC Publications

The 432 Sep 6, 1994

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 the same since 1988
Wednesday, Sept 7
SUB Partyroom
Science BBQ
Cheap.food, volleyball
Wednesday, Sep! 7
Main Mail outside Chem
SUS Open House
free munchies!
1 1:30-2:30
Week of Sept 6-9
(hem B160
SUS Council
Nominations open.
Friday, Sept 9
forms available at SUSi
or on back page
Copies of The Guide
available now
for pickup at SUS
I'lus much more
to come!
Happy thoughts.
I'lus tons of ink, all of
Thursday night and
most of Friday morning.
One hundred and one
dalmatians. Pixie dust.
Dreams, wishes and
hopeful fantasies.  Fumes
from the spray mount
cans, and, of course...
Other stuff.
Printed at College
Printers, Vancouver BC
nan Declared 2
Pope makes surprise PR move!
Gord Van McOlundsky, Washington Irving
Roving Correspondents
bold rnanuever hailed
as the greatest concession to science of all time, the
Roman Catholic Church
today announced the canonization of Richard Feynman,
noted nuclear physicist.
Scientists all around the
world are going on record
supporting the actions of
Pope John Paul II, claiming
the aging pontiff has finally
taken steps to make amends
for the Church's actions during the 15th century.
"I've always thought John
Paul would be the one,"
claimed one unnamed geologist. "It'll go a long way in
healing the wounds created
when the Church had that big
fight with Galileo over
whether the world was flat or
round. It's not flat, you
know. It's actually shaped
like a really big waffle. Really
Other members of the scientific community echo similar sentiments.
However, the canonization
of Feynman is causing a stir in
the Roman Catholic hierarchy. Close advisors to the
Pope are at a loss as to how
Feynman's name was ever
brought forward for consideration.
Normally, a group of senior
cardinals meet at the Vatican
City to discuss the merits of
each nominee. From these
debates, a list of three suitable
candidates are presented to
the Pope for his final decision.
This process is extensive, delving into every aspect of the
recipient's personal and public lives, and can last for several years as the research is completed.
Members of the nominating committee have been
quick to assert that Feynman's
name has never been under
consideration, and are at a
loss to explain why the Pope
might have made such an radical departure from accepted
guidelines for sainthood.
"He's making a farce of the
entire process" claimed the
senior cardinal from Iowa.
"Feynman was a nut, who
blundered from discovery to
discovery. He never went to
church, never even celebrated
Christmas. Cripes, he was
Despite the apparent errors
in the selection process, the
decision made by the leader
of the Roman Catholic church
will stand. Pope John Paul II
made the following comments to an Italian radio station earlier this morning:
"Mistake? What mistake? I
just read out the name I saw
on the teleprompter last
night. I've got to support the
recommendations of the cardinals, who obviously feel this
Feynman character is worthy
of the highest honour the
Roman Catholic Church can
bestow. Keep in mind that the
pope doesn't make mistakes.
Computers make mistakes."
Much of the confusion over
this matter can be contributed
to the internal communications of the Vatican City and
its inhabitants. The problem
seems to have started last
year, when the Vatican converted to a sophisticated electronic mailing system from
the old system of carrier
pigeons and messenger boys,
which seems to baffle not
only the near-octogenarian
pontiff, but the greater part of
the complement of staff at the
religious capita). Recently, a
"sysop" was hired to manage
the system, which was when
the trouble started. The
Computer Science graduate is
currently under investigation
by an ecclesiastical court, and
therefore unavailable for comment. It is believed that the
unlucky computer science student may have also been
responsible for similar problems at his previous place of
employment, located somewhere in Western Canada.
The following press release
was released following the
"Issa like this," explains
Vatican spokesperson Father
Guido Sarducci, "His Holiness,
he no lika those science guys.
I mean, he lova everybody,
you know. But he lova them
nerds a little less than the rest.
Firsta we get the evolution
athing, then thata flat worlda
athing, now this. What's a
popa gonna do? We can't
burn them ata the stake anymore, you see. We hava more
subtle ways nowa."
Also in the news, and possibly related, the Louvre has
announced the opening of a
new "Feynman Family Fotos"
Wing, Russian news reports
the approval of May 1st as
"Feynman Day", and NASA
has published plans for placing a space station in geosynchronous orbit for the express
purpose of broadcasting telescopic images of the late
Scientist's 1949 Buick
Roadmaster, still parked outside his widow's home, on a
brand-new satellite channel
called FeynTV. All of these
new projects are now being
verified for authenticity.
In Feynman's hometown of
Far Rockaway, NY, plans are
being laid to welcome the
famous scientist home.
Mayor Mikey Oppeleren
"It's been so long since
we've had the honour of recognizing an outstanding citizen of the city. Why, the last
person who made the head-
Saint Feynman
continues on page seven
"Well, MrSteinbrenner... the board of directors had a little meeting and decided that..
well,... three strikes and you 're out, sir." The Editor's Daily Rant.
There's only a few days
in the year that you
can predict exactly
what's going to happen to
you. One of them happens
to be Christmas; people celebrate by giving each other
presents. Birthdays are
another; people celebrate by
giving presents. Moving
Day is the third; people go
out of their way to give you
a solid kick in the head.
Personally, I think I prefer
unwrapping presents than
unwrapping bandages. I'll
take Christmas for 200,
For better or worse, I've
lived in residence all my
university career. I've tasted
both the eat-at-your-own-
risk cuisine of Totem Park
and the do-it-yourself
gourmet food of Fairview.
Ironically enough, quality of
food seems the same in both
places - in Totem everything looks, smells and
tastes like bland gooey
pasta, and in Fairview everything is bland gooey pasta
'cause that's all I learned
how to make before I left
the safety and comfort of
my parents' house.
Whenever I tell my dad this
story, he laughs and laughs
and laughs. Somehow he
find my eventual death via
starvation and amusing
topic. Great sense of
humour, Dad.
Room size also seems to
be constant through the residence system, a small (they
call it snug) brick lined shoe-
box more reminiscent of
Tolkien's The Hobbit rather
than a living place for a normal-sized university student. It certainly doesn't
look like the rooms they
show in the brochures, does
it? We oughta sue 'em for
false advertising. You bring
the lawyers, I'll bring the
party favours... it'll be a
So September 1 finally
made its long-expected
appearance, and I resignedly
made preparations to move
my entire life's accumulation of stuff, paraphernalia
and plain old-fashioned
junk to the other side of
campus. 1 In typical
University fashion, one
hand had no idea the other
hand even existed, let alone
was doing anything, so I
was facing the following
Letter from Fairview:
"Dear resident, Please
ensure departure before Aug
30. Departure time is schedule between the hours of
10:00am and 2:00pm"
Letter from Gage: "Dear
resident. Welcome to Gage
Towers, Your residence
accommodation will be
ready for your occupancy
the morning of Aug 31.
Move-in time is schedule
from 4:00pm to 8:00pm."
So what am I supposed to
do during the intervening
hours? Spend the night
sleeping on the streets with
all my junk loaded into a
friend's car? Naturally, I
called both residence areas
for clarification of what was
obviously a minor misunderstanding on my part.
Naturally, they both
claimed it was the other residence's responsibility to
provide a roof over my
weary head, and refused to
even confirm that I still had
a room reserved at Gage.
Screw it. I eventually
decided to ignore both letters and just move in when I
felt like it. Problem solved.
That about sums up the
fun of Moving Day, if you
discount the back-breaking
labour, the excitement of
waiting ten minutes for the
elevator each and every time
you want to go down for
another load, or the sheer
stupidity of the clerk who
refuses to believe you're
actually an University student, let alone one who
wants to sign in for his
But that's life, right? All I
can do is deal with it.
So I am, by telling the
entire world, or at least the
0.000000009% of the world
population who reads The
Consider yourself in a
privileged minority. No
other university has The
432, which may actually be
a good thing for all I know.
Consider yourself lucky.
Consider writing a story
Like the way I've slipped a
standard plug for the paper?
Are you going to be one of
our many victims , I mean,
It's very easy. You don't
even need a temporal lobe
to put together an intelligent sentence or two,
although the neuroscientists
in the reading audience
might disagree with that
statement. 2
All you do is get out a pen
(or any other suitable writing instrument) and start
writing. Take whatever
comes out down to the SUS
Office and throw triumphantly down in front of
me. Scream "See! lean
write for The 4321 Hah!" and
then storm out. Make sure
to slam the door for that
special touch. Really slam it
I'll spend the next three
hours deciphering your miserable handwriting, two
more correcting the worst of
the spelling mistakes, one
hour attempting to decide
whether your story is actually funny or not, and as the
final deadline approaches,
I'll realize I need some gratuitous filler in a bloody
quick hurry and put your
completely unedited,
uncensored and unintelligible story in that very place.
And you thought I'd actually edit it? What do I look
like to you, an editor?
...wait just one second ...
ah, never mind. 3
It's that simple. What's
stopping ya?
So come on down to SUS,
ideas and/or paper in hand.
I'll need all the help I can
get. Thanks for the time.
(*■ Junk. Everyone has it.
especially grandparents and
young children. It's a bit
like athlete's foot; you can
never get rid of it complete
ly, and it will always grow if
you give it even an inch of
Living in residence keeps
the junk to a bare minimum, a regular sized apartment means the junk will
grow into IKEA style furniture, and anyone sharing a
house... well, let's just say
I'm very glad I'll never have
to help you move.
2 Any disagreeing neuroscientists should refer to
Scientific American, Vol 5
Issue 4, page 178 on the article titled "Temporal Lobe -
Another Appendix?" by Dr.
A. Meseran. It's a great
piece, brilliantly written
detailing all the work done
to prove the temporal lobe
is completely useless in 99%
of the human population,
and in 45% of alligators. ^
3 Actually, this entire
paragraph is a complete lie.
I'd much prefer it if you give
me your story on a disk,
spellchecked. I can take
Macintosh or PC, so long as
the stories are saved in a
standard format. I'll be more
than happy to help you edit
it, or if you'd like, I'll even
help you find a story idea.
I'm full of them.
And, a final note, I'd be
quite upset if you slammed
the door on you way out. I
hate loud noises. So no
sneaking up behind me late
at night and shouting
"boo!" I'd probably react
poorly (ie. kill you on the
4 This is another blatant
lie I just made that up to fill
up some more space. This is
not an uncommon practice
for The 432, since we finish
the paper as the morning
sun is slowly rising over the
mountains to the east. How
poetic, eh? Poetry only's
one of my many artistic talents. Hah!)
SUS Open House
Ail week long, the Science Undergrad Society will be holding an Open
House to welcome Science students back to UBC and invite them to
visit their undergrad lounge and office.
SUS offers 7Si pop, 5<t photocopies, free microwave, fridge, phones,
computer use, and a great place to catch a few ZZZ's or socialize with
Hopefully, we will have completed the office renovations by then and
will be able to offer you a place to sit. If not, there's always the floor.
Free munchies will be served between 71:30 and 2:30. See ya then!
Bzzr goes for a buck and two
Psider for a double loon!
4:32-8:00 And now... the Dean.
Btait MtDmald
Ryan McCuaig
Editor Emeritus
Graeme Kennedy
Roger Watts
Assistant Editors
Steve Coleman, Graeme
Kennedy, Dr. Barry
McBride, Ryan McCuaig,
Bfair McDonald, Derek
Miller, Patrick Redding,
Roger Watts
Te<hrK> lingo n
The 432 is produced on
Marc Antony, Gossamer,
Wile E. Coyote, and Uttle
Beeper* {Macs of various
shapes and sizes)
Published using Quark
XPress 3*3, freehand 4*1,
and Word.
Body text is 9pt Stone
Serif, and titling In 36pt
Stone Sans.
Who knows? These
things seem to happen
all on their own.
Coromrte during, pro-
du<tk>n night provided
courtesy of the Varsity
Tn*? 432 is printed twice
a month by the Science
Undergraduate Society of
UBC forthe express purpose of achieving nothing in particular.
The Science Undergrad
Office is located In the
Chemistry B^Wing,
&16& Aft visitors are welcome.
AN submissions gladly
accepted. You don't even
need lo be a Science student
Alt article* should be
typed up and submitted
on either a Mac or IBM
disk, Most standard formats accepted, as with
most major credit cards*
Please Include a printed
c&py of your work in case
we acddently melt your
disk down during a freak
late night food run*
Drop the whole bunch
down at tine SUS Office,
in the box marked 432
Submissions* Deadlines
are posted in the office
and the paper, always at
It is a pleasure to welcome those of you who
are at UBC for the first
time and those who are
returning to the Faculty of
You are part of only three
that excels in all major areas
of the Biological,
Computational, Physical
and Earth Sciences. Our
wide range of programs
means that you will have
the opportunity to learn
about many different facets
of the world we live in. Our
professors are interested in
conveying the excitement of
science to students, and
their lectures are complemented and enlivened by
their varied and active
research programs. I encourage you to get to know
them and take advantage of
the educational opportunities provided by a major
research university.
Science is hard work,
requiring dedication to your
studies. The professors, lab
assistants, departmental
staff and the Dean's Office
personnel (in particular, the
senior Faculty Advisors) are
here to help you. Talk to
them, to your fellow SUS
members and to other students-discuss your academic
interests and problems. I
encourage all first year students to sign up for our
Mentoring Program: an
opportunity to get to know
a professor or graduate student and to find out, first
hand, what an academic
research career is like. UBC's
motto is Tuum Est, and it is
"up to you" to interact as
much as possible within the
academic environment, if
you are to derive maximum
benefit from it.
UBC is a community,
which offers many opportunities to meet a variety of
people, and to participate in
both academic and non-academic activities. When you
are not involved in your
studies, take the time to
attend performances, seminars and lectures by world
renowned artists and scientists, join the science clubs
associated with the different
majors programs, and participate in or enjoy sports
events. I hope that the years
you spend at UBC will be
productive and worthwhile.
I wish you success in all
aspects of your academic
Dr. Barry McBride
Dean of Science
Patrick Redding
A Cautionary Tale
Ex-ex editor returns
Listen up, my friends; listen close. As you read this
delightful newspaper, you are preparing to begin the
academic year, or are already a few days into what right
now feels like the beginning of wondrous, slightly frightening post-secondary odyssey. Many of you know that this elation will pass. Many of you aie already tensing your abdominals in anticipation of the Mid-term Slump, the November
Depression and the Exam Season Gauntlet of Banal Death.
You folks know that on some unspecified but inevitable
night, at roughly 2 am, after a few double capps, while
stalled out roughly 50% of the way through an essay on a
topic whose secrets still reside within the stack of freshly
borrowed library books sitting on their desk, you will stop
typing, grab slick handfuls of matted hair in both hands and
hoarsely vow: "I wish I was working in the Real World and
could be asleep right now." Of course you will survive this
trial, finish cramming for exams, and drag yourselves into
the end-zone that is Christmas Break. But the whole pathetic cycle begins anew first week in January, and by about
March, professional hot dog sales begin to look more and
more inviting. Summer finally comes, and with it, the bliss
of forgetfulness. Until the following fall.
So it should come as no shock to you that by the time
graduation rolls around in x years, you will be only too
happy to kiss the Pt. Grey Gulag adieu. In fact, you'll be
swearing up and down that you'll never even set foot on
UBC soil again. There you'll be at convocation, cloaked in
your quaint graduation frock, still clutching your new
machine-stamped degree in its naughahyde folder. Horrified
parents and embarrassed visitors, jaded faculty members and
administration officials complete in their self-deception; all
will be looking on as you and your fellow FORMER classmates swear like sailors that you'll never spend another day
in school, thank you very much, and when do I start my 80
K/yr job, and where's my complimentary condo in Whistler?
Ah yes, about that. Here's where Reality intrudes.
Rather than exploring everything dark and spirit-crushing about having a nine-tofive job, let's take one aspect of
contemporary post-academic life; a facet that even cloistered
university students occasionally have to deal with. Banks.
When I first came to UBC, practically my first act was to
walk into the BoM in SUB and open a chequing account.
The main purpose of this account was to enable my parents
to transfer money to me when I became broke. This account
would also allow me to purchase textbooks without having
to drive a forklift load of cash bills into the bookstore. My
initial impression of the UBC branch of BoM was that it was
pretty typical of banks, based on my limited experience. I
eventually realized that a good many of the tellers and staff
there either were or had been UBC students themselves and
that even the older, veteran staff were uniquely acquainted
with the sorts of financial difficulties university students can
encounter. In that I did more "banking" in my first year at
UBC than in all my previous years combined, I figure that I
established a pretty good rapport with that branch, to the
point that individual tellers knew me by name, could recall
all the specific times I'd lost my ATM card and knew in
advance which tacky design to order for my personal
cheques. For close to six years, the UBC BoM branch was the
bank I called home, and regardless of how I may have felt
about Interac fees or the Byzantine system set up for paying
tuition directly through a teller, I regarded most bank personnel as helpful and generally saint-like.
Needless to say, the world of university/small-community banking is not representative of most of the developed
world. My first clue to this effect came after Grad, when I
ventured into the BoM Student Loan Office to arrange delivery of my pound of flesh into the government coffers. I
walked up to the counter designated "Loan Repayment"
(now that's presumption for you), and waited while the person ahead of me was being served. After about five minutes,
the other customer completed her transaction and walked
away. The teller who had been assisting her did not invite
me to step forward. She simply walked away from the
counter and returned to her desk, one of many desks arrayed
behind the Impassable Counter, and sat clown, ignoring me
completely. Other tellers worked at their desks, oblivious to
the fact that someone might actually be interested in arranging the repayment of a $7,000 + debt. I stood there, like a
good Canadian, without so much as a heavy sigh, for another five minutes before one of the nearer bank employees
came to long enough to realized that her bank was being
called upon to deal with someone from the outside. When I
informed her that I wished to make a loan repayment, she
reacted as though I was trying to pull a fast one, as if thinking 'when was the last time one of these dead-beat college
kids actually made a legitimate attempt to get out of the
That was discouraging enough. In more recent months, I
established a commercial account at a branch near my
home, so that I could keep track of any finances associated
with my freelance design work. Recently my sister in Seattle
sent me a cheque in US funds so that I could purchase some
needed equipment for my work. I entered the local branch
of BoM and asked to deposit this cheque into the commercial account. Now, even though this account is still under
the name "Patrick Redding", apparently this is a different
Patrick Redding than the one my sister wrote the chequefor.
The keen young man behind the Plexiglas told me that
"sorry, but you'll have to deposit this into your personal
account." Fine. Annoying, but not a huge obstacle. "Oh, but
wait. Since this cheque was written from a US Bank branch
in Seattle, we'll have to put a 10-12 day hold on it until we
can send the necessary paperwork down to Washington.
Sorry." At this point I had to remind myself that I was in a
A Cautionary tale
Continued on page seven The Science Manifesto
Welcome back.
I'm sure you're
all wondering
what your merry legislators
in SUS have been up to
since you started slaving
away to earn your tuition
back in May. If you aren't
already wondering, you
should. After all, we've got
your ten bucks, and there
ain't nothin' you can do
about it.
The Guide
Once again, The Guide
came to be, without too
many unexpected hitches.
Blame for its general lateness has been pinned on the
Office of the Registrar,
which was lagging four
weeks behind normal schedule on Admissions. Sorry. If
you didn't get a copy and
still want one (it has a very
bohemian photo of me with
longish hair, by the way)
just come down to CHEM
160 and ask one of the
friendly hacks if you could
please have one.
Quest for Gyproc
During August, myself
and a couple of other past
and present exec worked
ourselves up into a righteous froth over the gaping
hole in the south wall of our
office. The hole, you see,
had been installed by Plant
Operations in an effort to
get at a leak in our ceiling
(don't ask). The hole originally joined our cozy office
back in July of 1993, and
we've been staring at the
studs ever since.
In a testosterone-induced
frenzy one Saturday, we
packed up, went down to
see the friendly chaps at Irly
Bird, and procured some
gyproc and power tools (a
couple of months earlier, I
got a bit depressed about
turning twenty-one. Then I
discovered the upside: I
have both a majoT credit
card and no further need of
adult supervision).
The end result is that
CHEM 160 has a nice finished wall, and there was
minimal loss of life. Okay,
so someone will probably
get ticked that we contravened some union contract
or other, but in our defense
we did have two foremen
supervising one drywall
taper for a while. Another
mitigating factor is that we
made a point of not reading
the instructions.
My only regret is that I
never did get to use our new
acetylene torch. One of the
guys did thwomp his thumb
something awful, but didn't
care for my eager suggestion
that we try cauterizing the
Phone Campaign
For the second year running, several SUS-types were
rounded up by the Dean's
Office in August to sit
around and phone up every
first-year Science student on
the Registrar's list. Our mission was to welcome everyone and find out if they had
questions about the
University. Reactions on the
part of our frosh quarries
ranged from extreme indifference to "uh, yeah, when
do we get our textbooks?" to
mild hysteria because someone from UBC was calling.
That latter reaction was a
bit depressing to get. Has
this university become so
faceless and impersonal, I
would ponder as I listened
to this new denizen of our
academic idyll hyperventilate, that students should
automatically expect the
worst when someone takes
notice of them?
Then I would cheer
myself up by saying "I'm
calling to inform you that
your registration has been
cancelled, and advise you to
call 822-4403 as soon as you
can! Thanks, goodbye," and
trying to tell if that gurgling
sound at the other end of
the line signalled a stroke or
a coronary.
SUS Council Elections
Nominations will open
Friday, September 9
Forms available in Chem B160
Department reps open only to students registered in that department, first year reps
open only to frosh, and the general officer positions can be filled by any Science student
Biochemistry • Biology • Chemistry • Computer Science • General Science
Geography • Geology • Geophysics/Astronomy • Mathematics/Statistics
Microbiology/Immunology • Pharmacology/Physiology • Physics • Psychology
Science One • 2 First Year Reps • 4 General Officers
Frosh spend $1.50 for a burger
and a pop
Everyone else pays $2
Play a game of volleyball
Wednesday, Sept 7
At the grass between Chem and
11:30   2:30
SOOQ    O 3 ±S VO*l   • *l 3 H XO   •  *J H O AV
I spent the better part of
the summer thinking of
neat things to do to make
SUS a supremely organized
and benevolent "parent"—if
you will—to each and every
one of you out there in the
Faculty of Science. I thought
up new initiatives that
would take this Society in
directions never before
taken—nay, directions never
before dreamed.
Unfortunately, I kinda
forgot most of 'em.
However, there are some
things I plan to do, given
that a whopping hundred
and fifty or so of you out
there thought I'd make an
okay president:
Volunteering for SUS
One of the areas where
many people perceive SUS
to be deficient is in its treatment of volunteers. Having
been around SUS for most of
the nineties to date, I've lost
track of the number of times
someone has mustered up
the nerve to trot up and say
"I really want to get
involved," and ended up on
SUS Council.
To be honest, SUS
Council meetings are not for
everyone, but in the absence
of any other obvious task
for a prospective volunteer,
that's where everyone ends
up. This is not to say that
there aren't some people
who just wouldn't be whole
unless they could second
motions and indignantly
exclaim "point of order!"
once in a while (you know
who you are).
For the rest of you, however, we'll be sure to try to
find something a little more
to your liking. So, if you've
got some spare time, please
drop by and ask one of the
exec what there is for you to
do. We'd love your help,
and I've laid down the law
to everyone: anyone who
bites new volunteers has to
answer to me. Everyone
except our SoCo, John
Hallett, who seemed to
respond well to the threat.
Speaker Series
Something that was suggested to me by the past
President, Sarah Thornton,
was the idea of a speaker
series similar to the one
held at the Orpheum last
year. For those who missed
those lectures, the speakers
talked about science for an
audience interested in science but not necessarily
trained in the speaker's
field. As such, it was perfect
for science undergraduates—particularly first- and
second-years who have the
mathematical, physical,
and/or biological grounding
to understand quite a bit if
it's phrased properly.
It occurred to Sarah that
while many departments
run seminars with guest
speakers, these are generally
so specific as to be completely uninteresting to anyone but a graduate student.
She also thought that it
might help more students
see the point of a bachelor's
in science (the liberal arts
degree of the twenty-first
century) if SUS were to
sponsor a speaker series in
which we encouraged some
of the Faculty's best instructors to get undergraduates
excited about a field they
might know little about.
Currently, the words you
read above are as far as the
idea has gone. If you too
think this is a good idea, I
could use some help, so
come talk to me about it.
The (this might hurt)
"Info Superhighway"
As a computer science
student who believes about
half of the hype about the
Internet being such a great
tool for democracy, I'm
somewhat dismayed that in
exchange for providing free
access to the Internet for
students, UBC has decided
to blitz most of its public
terminals. Since SUS has
some hardware dedicated to
use by our members, I've
been attempting to get a
direct connection to the
campus network installed in
CHEM 160. The end result
will be that SUS will provide
you with a place where you
can read your electronic
mail and network news if
you don't have a computer,
don't have a modem, or
don't have either one. As
SUS now has a newsgroup
(ubc.sus) in which you can
publicly declare your animosity for the silly git in
charge of it, I want all you
kids out there to go forth
and sign up for a Netinfo
account. Off you go...
How to get a hold of me
Deadline is fast approaching, and I'm told by the new
guy in charge of this paper
(whose ears will someday
dry, I'm sure...) that I'm
running low on space, (ed.
Huh? What the $#%& is
that old fart complaining
about now? Won't he ever
get off my back!?!) So, I'll
sign off by telling you how
you, one of of my wonderful, wonderful constituents,
can get a hold of me, the
President, if you have any
comments or ideas. I can be
reached by phone most days
at 822 4235, or you can find
me in CHEM 160 (currently,
I have a beard, but that may
not last). Alternately, if
you've got one of those
Netinfo accounts that I
mentioned, my e-mail
address is
dday@unixg.ubc.ca, or you
can post something to
Ta. (ed. This means goodbye...) Feeling Lucky?
Dik Miller,
The Final Mission.
"cArthur said it first.
And so shall I. "I shalll
.return." This has special meaning for me, because I
am the reincarnation of
McArthur. Or is it King
Richard? Well, anyway, I am
the reincarnation of somebody
who went away and came back stronger, leaner, more competitive. I just remembered who I am: mosquitoes. Ya see,
DDT just makes me stronger.
So why am I away? Here's the lesson: get it in writing.
Those of you who know me, will know exactly what I mean.
Those of you who don't should take the advice. Those of you
in the Dean's office who don't practice this hobby can just
go and chew some tinfoil for awhile. You know who you are.
Here's the other lesson: studying really is part of university
life. I highly reccommend it over, say, Streetfighter as a way
to improve your educational standing. This actually reduces
your odds of flunking astronomically. Nuff said.
Now that I've given you the mom lecture, and talk about
odds, what are the odds of mom being right? 'Till now, I
would have said none. I lose. The day mom calls and tells
me to wear my bike helmet is the day somebody opens his
car door without looking. I am lucky because:
1) I am wearing a helmet? Not necessarily. I landed on my
ass, which was protected only by twenty years of Quarter
Pounders with Cheese.
2) I landed on my ass? Lucky. Soft landing.
3) I managed to roll out of traffic? Lucky. Have you seen all
those busted coolers on the beach, mangled and demolished by mere waves? That's the same stuff they make
helmets out of. Cars are harder than waves. Cars are
harder than heads. Well, Jell-O is probably harder than
my head, but we move on.
4) The guy was insured? Lucky. This means I get a new bike.
5) I was in a lot of pain? Not lucky. This is good for ICBC
settlements, but I'd rather walk than have a fistfull of
6) I have the same name as the very helpful bystander? Not
lucky. He asks me my name and I say "Same as yours,
only with two e's.". He suspects head injury.
7) I work in St. Paul's Emergency? Not lucky. When the
Emerg attendant asks where I work I respond with "Same
as you." A quick wink in the direction of the MD and he
explains "Bad mentition." He had to ask. "Weren't wearing a helmet, were we Meester. Confuuused?"
So, now I have a box of bicycle parts, and a new metal
sculpture that I used to commute on. Advice? Strap on the
brainbucket, tuck & roll. Then sue his little caddilac-driving
Now for a poem...
Tis September Seven and Point Grey is weeks from winter frost.
First day of class at UBC and all the Frosh are lost!
Profs lecture in the empty halls, and think this not so queer,
They just lament that skipping habits begin earlier every year.
Is it 'cause Hebb looks like a sugarcube, and T-Bird's incomplete?
Will we ever hear the pitter-patter of frenzied Freshman feet?
Searchers are dispatched to every site within reach.
Tho' we never do hear back from those we send down to Wreck
Science commandeers the telescope, but these efforts are in vain.
Budget cuts. Old telescope. It sees about to Main.
'Tuition's paid," says Strangway, "Hey, how 'bout those Habs?"
No one checks the VD clinic. I mean they couldn't ail have crabs.
Engineering builds a beacon to guide them to the site.
Medicine wants to do their part, but has lots of studying tonight.
Music writes an opera, and Fine Arts, creates a mime.
Arts only writes a poem. Quite the waste of time.
This story's only fiction, so you haw nought to fear.
Personally, I'd rather be nursing a tall, dark, frosty beer.
I'll save you MTV'ers from my amateruish rhyme.
Dancing, drinking at the Pit. They were with us all the time.
That's all for now...
When we last left
our intrepid hero
four months ago,
Dik Miller had just signed
on as bass player for The
Grateful Circumcised, forgoing his previous job as UBC
B-Lot parking attendant and
moving on to what seemed
sure to be a life of adventure, blistering volume, and
really bad dressing room
food. As he has discovered,
all that is really lacking is
the adventure.
"Mmmm," I said, "stale
cheese on Wonder Bread
again. Tasty."
"And don't forget the •
warm beer," added the guitarist. "Yum."
"You know, despite the
great thrill of being out
there on the stage, thrashing my hair around, pounding the crowd with 110
decibels of sheer, raw, sonic
power, somehow I'm not
He arched an eyebrow at
me, wiping the last of the
Wonder Bread crumbs from
his lip. "Not feeling enough
intellectual stimulation?"
"Naw, that's not it. It's
the adventure I miss."
"Running the band van
waaaaay below 'E' on the
gas gauge not adventure
enough for you?"
"No. I'm used to gun-
fights, rope swinging,
intrigue, spies. I mean, I
haven't used a Dik Miller™
gadget of any description
for three months!"
"Wait a minute," he interjected. "What about your
Dik Miller™ perm
stretcher/thumb screw?"
I sighed. "It's just not the
"Bummer, man."
Just then, the wall of our
dressing room caved in with
a huge, crushing explosion
of bricks, mortar, and dry-
wall. Two black-garbed
Ninja warriors burst in,
kicked the guitarist across
the room, and grabbed me,
tying me up in a sophisticated series of knots of rock-
climbing rope and dragging
me back through the hole.
Just before one of them
clubbed me unconscious, I
had time to shout back to
the guitar player, "Now this
is more like it!"
When I regained consciousness, I found myself
strapped to a cold metal
chair with a bright light
shining in my face.
"So, Miller, we meet once
again," said a voice from
beyond the light.
"Sorry?" I said. "Who's
"What? Who?"
"Dr. Thurston J.
Gerbilwibbie, your arch
I thought for a moment.
"Sorry, doesn't ring a bell."
The man emerged from
behind the light. "Do you
recognize this scar?" He
pointed to a long, zigzag
scar on his right cheek. "Do
you remember how I got
"Uh, no. In fact, I don't
recognize you at all."
"What?! How about this?"
He indicated his mechanical
left arm.
"Or this?" Missing fingers
on his right hand.
"Er, no, sorry."
"This?" A tattoo-like scar
on his right shoulder blade.
"Why are you showing
me these things? I have no-
idea who you are."
"Then maybe this will jair
your memory!" He withdrew from a pocket a gold
amulet, encrusted with precious stones and bearing the
initials 'MM' carved exquisitely into its face."
"It's nice, but I don't recognize it."
Gerbilwibbie was getting;
quite agitated. "Your own
amulet, and you don't even
recognize it! Augh! I suppose I must resort to torture."
Oh great, I thought.
Two hours later, I was in
considerable pain. In my
gut. I had been relentlessly
tickled for the last fifteen
minutes, and my diaphragm
was quite sore.
"Hee hee hee hee," I giggled. "Look [hee], I really
[haw] don't know who you
are or where [hee hee hee]
I'm supposed to know you
"That's it!" Gerbilwibbie
raged. "Unless you can
remember who I am, this
will be the last day in the
life of the great Mick Miller,
Private Eye!"
"Did you say Mick?" I
asked [hee hee]. He turned.
"Yes, of course. You're Mick
Miller, Private Eye."
"Uh, no, I'm Dik Miller,
Private Eye. D-I-K, not M-I-
His eyes widened.
"Dik Miller. You know,
Dik Miller™
truncheon/salad fork/candle
stick holder. Dik Miller™
fish cleaner/projection
TV/spam grinder. That
"Oh my. I'm so sorry. I
have the wrong man." He
turned. "Guards! Release
The Ninja warriors picked
me up, blindfolded me,
manhandled me down the
corridor, and dumped me in
the street.
I picked myself up. I was
in a dark, rainy city roadway, and was improperly
clothed for the weather. (My
Dik Miller™ trenchcoat had
been discarded in favour of
a muscle-displaying Iron
Maiden tank top and ripped
jeans for the proper rock
star look.) I was just about
to turn and hail a cab back
to the gig when I was unceremoniously hit by a bus.
Bummer, I thought as I
slowly lost consciousness.
So ends the saga of Dik
Miller, Private Eye after almost
eleven years of thrilling readers
Over the years, Dik's managed to get out of many
scrapes. Does he happen to
have a Dik Miller™ tele-
porter/orange Juice maker/hot
glue gun. Or will he come
back as Dik Miller, Poltergist.
Or is this finally the end?
(NO TALENT NECESSARY) Teams are now being
formed for all Intramurals
leagues, tournaments and
special events, SUS pays
half the team fees for
Science teams In most
events. Your points go to
fuel the all-mighty
Science Sports juggernaut.
Join the Black and Blue.
Science Sports * Chem B160
Chem club 94
• old exams • locker rentals
• academic support • funky attire
• BEvERage gardens • much more
Come check us out!
Room D222-228 in the Chem Bldg
or call at 822-2164
So you want to go to Med School?
Congratulations! Here we are, sitting in Biology 115, ready to take that first of a
thousand steps on the path towards becoming an MD. So take a deep breath, grab
your four-colour clicker pen, and let's go!
The key to making it into medical school is to put yourself into the right frame of
The first essential tool you'll need in your quest is a healthy disdain for those less
ambitious than yourself. You might find your aimless undergraduate colleagues will envy
your drive. This is normal, so don't worry about it. They could get into med school too if
they had any sense of purpose...well, they'd also have to go soak some ridges into their
cerebral cortexes, too, but that goes without saying. You are going to med school, regardless of how much your classmates scoff. You can have plenty of time for such pursuits as
friendship when you're clearing a quarter mil as a dermatologist.
Next, buy yourself a pager. It doesn't matter if you don't feel important enough to
need one right now; if you can get yourself a good rating with your service while you're
still a student, you'll be miles ahead when you do graduate. Besides, having one at your
side will give you an everpresent tactile reminder of your commitment to humanity.
Finally, get yourself a top-of-the-line leather Day-Timer™. One of these can give you
that all-important edge in terms of saving time, your most precious resource. A fun exercise is to get your younger brother or sister to hand it to you, shake his or her hand, and
practice saying "Well, thank you very much, Clive. If there's anything I can do for
Bristol-Myers, you be sure to let me know."
• The cardinal rule in lectures is, if they can't be published as is, they just aren't notes.
Now you see why we need the four-colour pen, right? Good!
• No matter how obvious something seems, it never hurts to make sure you've understood correctly. Remember the phrase "there is no such thing as a stupid question?"
Well, it's true. There isn't. And believing that there isn't is sort of like a Hippocratic Oath
for professors. Besides, even if it seems obvious to you, having a bit of consideration for
your less attentive classmates and asking the question anyway will make people resent
your most honourable of callings a bit less.
• In the lecture hall, there is a careful system of establishing hierarchy among all those
who would, like you, become a healer. You must master it in order to someday become
the alpha-keener and take over the ranks of the first-year worker-keeners, who will spend
endless hours fetching audio-visual materials for you and then wondering why you simply stuff it in a drawer, never look at it, and then return it three weeks overdue on their
cards, forever sullying their good library names. This will all be good practice for taking
on residents. The key is to always try to get the seat nearest the front. If you should ever
show up to class late, you could end up having to sit in the dreaded fifth row, or worse.
This is inexcusable; if it happens you may <Ts well just go into chiropractics right then
and there.
• If you should ever drop glassware, it it appropriate to cringe mightily and become
obsequious before the stores supervisor. You should promise to never, ever do it again.
Offer to pay restitution and even compensate the supervisor for any mental distress you
may have caused. Don't worry, though; they won't make you pay. They will merely be
impressed by your honesty.
• Try not to enjoy pithing the animals too much. It might someday show through in
your bedside manner (which would be bad).
• Try to plan your third-year courseload around a mid-November nervous breakdown.
It's good to beat the April rush, when Student Counselling is packed to the rafters with
other students who just don't have the discipline to plan ahead and go stark-raving
bonkers whenever it happens to suit their schedules.
Best of luck...
Some Handy Graphs
%Confidence that you will be admitted
1         2         3          4        |5
Undergraduate  Year
you will be admitte
1          2
rgraduate  Year rTW^Tr™!*™??
Frosh spend $1,50 for a burger
and a pop
Everyone else pays $2
Play a game of volleyball
Wednesday, Sept 7
At the grass between Cheim and
11:30   2:SO
$oo<j  diisvo^ -yiHjLo * ynoAv
prices *
Saint Feynman
continued from page one
lines here was Luigi
Moramoari. He was famous
for inventing that nifty Red
Dye Number Five popular
during the eighties for that
sweet and sour pork dish. I
tell ya, when he came
home, we threw one hell of
a party. Red dye everywhere.
Too bad lab testing proved it
to be completely toxic.
Luigi just hasn't been the
same since. He just never
recovered from the shock, I
Oppeleren was shocked
when informed that
Feynman was buried in
1988, and therefore would
not be attending the victory
parade, nor the complimentary pancake breakfast.
"So lemme get this
straight. We gonna go to all
the trouble and expense to
throw this gig, and the bum
can't be bothered making an
appearance! That's show biz
for ya. One little award, and
it goes straight to their
For one of ihe following reasons,
you did not: receive The Guide '94:
a) you weren't on the list.
b) you were living in Sweden
c) Canada Post. Nuffsaid.
At any rate, The Guide '94 contains
messages from the Science Undergrad
Society, blurbs from all the Science Clubs,
and the world-renowned Faculty Teaching
Review. Come by the SUS Office (Chem
B160) and grab a copy while they're still
A Cautionary Tale
continued from page three
bank full of witnesses, being recorded by roving video cameras, so. that perhaps reaching over the counter and garroting
this drone with his own power tie was not a sound strategy.
As if sensing my darkening mood, the teller-with-too-much-
gel-in-his-hair brightly suggested that I take the cheque to
the branch where my personal accounts reside since "they
probably know you better." Good idea, you doorknob.
So off to UBC I went, down into the depths of SUB and
into the antiseptic familiarity of the BoM. Eventually, I made
my way to the teller, who looked to be a couple years
younger than I, and probably a student. I politely asked her
to "please cash this cheque."
"Sure-<io you have an account here?" I told her the
"Great. The exchange rate today will be 1.27. Here you
go." She handed me a wad of bills. No muss, no fuss.
So I went and bought this thing I needed for work, and
felt that perhaps I had been taught a valuable lesson about
my old campus. Out in the Real World, no big surprise, the
machinery that runs everything treats you like, well, the
number you are. And certainly the institutions at UBC are
guilty of much of the same anonymity. But at least sometimes on this campus you get to deal with a "fellow number", and that person may at least be sympathetic to your
plight. When you are enduring your scholarly stress, praying
for the relative safety of a nice, boring Joe-job, just remember that all those banks, auto insurance agencies, credit card
companies and various branches of the Federal Government
will be more than happy to fill the shoes of sadistic professors. Have a good year, everyone. Five Weddings and a Roger.
"arriage is a wonderful institution... if, of course,
you like living in an inst-
Groucho Marx
It's official. I'm the Last of
the Mohicans.
(I should explain here
that the preceding statement was not in any way an
attempt to compare myself
with Daniel Day-Lewis. I say
this in the interest of protecting anyone reading this
who knows me, as the mental images such a comparison might conjure up would
probably cause them
enough shrieking, breathless
laughter to cause a pretty
good aneurysm or two, let
alone a fair amount of internal hemorrhaging. There.
That oughta keep any
would-be pain-and-suffering
lawsuits at bay...)
What I meant was that of
all of my old friends from
high school, I think I'm
pretty much the only single
person left. You've all heard
the song, Those Wedding
Bells Are Breaking Up That
Ol' Gang O' Mine... well,
it's my belief the guy who
wrote it was vastly understating his point. Those
same bells spent the summer doing to my gang what
the RAF did to Dresden, just
with less napalm.
To put things in a bit
more perspective... between
family members, friends of
mine and friends of my girlfriend, I attended no less
that nine weddings this
summer. By my reckoning,
that's gotta be some kind of
a single-season record
(except, of course, for
Elizabeth Taylor's astonishing mark of 13 weddings in
1977, but that doesn't really
count, considering that they
were all her weddings).
Of those nine happy occasions, a solid five directly
involved high-school friends
of mine. My theory is that I
missed the day in school
when the rest of the class
was told that we were supposed to do our wedding in
1994. Serves me right; I was
never big on homework. It's
either that, or my book had
a rather unfortunate typo
telling me to do my weeding in 1994. A cruel twist of
fate, yes, but on the bright
side of this, you should have
seen my garden this summer...
In retrospect, I should be
probably be auditioning for
the sequel to Four Weddings
And A Funeral this fall. My
experience this summer
pretty much paralleled the
first film in every respect,
except that:
a) I dare say my toast to
one of the brides was
not quite as elegant as
that of Hugh Grant,
b) none of my friends actually died at any of these
things (so I guess my
toast wasn't that bad),
c) I sure as hell never ran
into Andie MacDowell.
The most interesting
thing about the whole exercise was the number of different ways in which people
interpret the whole wedding
gig. We had everything
from a simple, intimate little country-churchhouse-
affair to a full 75-minute
Catholic ceremony, complete with Bible readings,
communion and the whole
ball of wax. The latter case
was kinda grueling; the
whole thing was so damn
long, I thought there was
gonna be a halftime show
with stats and highlights
from the first 30 minutes.
Mind you, the priest was
kind enough to offer everyone a glass of wine on the
house, although he looked
at me kinda funny when I
asked if they had any salsa
for those little white potato
I think the biggest loser
out of the whole affair was
my suit. I only have the one
that's really suitable for formal weddings and the like,
and it got more mileage this
summer than Madonna's
mattress. (That is to say, the
latter certainly made fewer
appearances at weddings
than did my suit. Except
maybe hers; I missed that
Oh, ha ha. Did I say my
suit was the big loser? No,
no, that title would in fact
go to my poor old
MasterCard, which ran the
gauntlet of nine different
wedding presents and lived
to tell about it. I wonder if
Buckets O' Wedding Gifts
would stand up as an
acceptable basis for a student loan application?
And so here I am, watching all of my childhood
friends picking partners for
life, wondering if whether
this isn't a little hint to get
on with it myself. I've just
about reached that turnaround point where my
mother has stopped telling
me I'm way too young to
get married and has started
collecting childrens' movies
on videocassette "for the
grandchildren". Subtle,
She must know something I don't; truth to tell,
I'm not in too much of a
hurry at this point. This is
partially because I've still
got a lot of school and other
things to accomplish first,
but mostly because I'm still
attempting to ascertain the
most suitable candidate for
the position of Wife.
However, I'm not too worried; I figure I'll know when
it's time to take the plunge.
I'll get this little feeling deep
down inside that says, Rog,
look at yourself. You're
feverish, breaking out in
cold sweats, white as a sheet
and babbling in tongues.
Your motor coordination is
shot, you're shaking like a
madman and you just about
killed yourself walking into
a door. Either you're having
a major stroke or you're in
So who knows? Could be
tomorrow, could be never.
Whatever the case, I've
done my field research, the
conclusions of which can all
be distilled into one simple
truth: using high-nitrate fertilizer in your soil will keep
pesky weeds to a minimum—
Damn. Sorry about that.
Mental block.
to r-
to u
J* 3
K^>  O
<- .Q
E ©
• r-t


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