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The Ubyssey Mar 23, 2005

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CLASSIFIEDS
nnouncemenis
NUTRITION: THE FOUNDATION
OF HEALTH & HEALING. The
Alternative and Integrative Medical
Society (AIMS) 6th annual conference
will feature local health experts presenting
a breadth of nutrition information.
Sunday April 3, 9-5. Details and
Registration online: www.aims.ubc.ca.
POLITICAL PARTY DEBATE ON
ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES. Wed.
Mar 23, 7:30pm. Moot Court Room,
Law Building. Free admission. Info:
alissareynolds@hotmail.com
AMS WOMYN'S CENTRE ANNUAL
GENERAL MEETING. Thursday,
March 31, 8pm AMS Womyn's Centre
SUB 245. Bring a coloured poster for
prizes!
VIETNAM: ADVENTURES OFF
THE BEATEN TRACK. With stunning
photos and music, photographer Dag
Goering and award-winning author
Maria Coffey recount their extraordinary
explorations of Vietnam by bicycle, kayak
and on foot.Thursday, March 31, 8 pm,
Ridge Theatre? 151$ 12 advance: Ridge,
MEC.
eruices
UBC FOOD COOP PRESENTS
SPROUTS, A STUDENT RUN, NOT
FOR PROFIT COOPERATIVE
GROCERY STORE. Find snacks, fresh
produce, ready-made- meals, baked goods
and more on the lower level of the SUB.
Open 11-6 Monday to Friday.
MASALA RESTAURANT, (now under
new management) offers 15% discount to
all studenrs, 4432, Dunbar (between 28th
and 29th Ave) 604.738.3186
mpioymen
JOIN NEXT YEAR'S UBC REC
STAFF! Get great experience in
event management, marketing and
development. Pick up a brochure at the
SRC for details.
PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
caaemic services
PROOFREADING SERVICE. Essays,
theses, letters, statements. Online, fast,
professional. We provide a no-charge
demonstration in advance. WWW.
CHECKEDIT.COM checkedit@cogeco.
ca (905) 335-3192
ESSAY RESEARCH AND
ASSISTANCE. Any subject A to Z.
Highly qualified graduates will help. Toll
free 1-888-345-8295. www.customessay.
corny
xtra-curncuiar
WWW.PRIDEUBC.COM. An AMS
Resource Group for gay, lesbian, bisexual,
transgendered students and allies. Visit
our website for events and info!
uy&se
FOR SALE: DIGITAL CAMERA,
JUICER, RICE COOKER, TV,
VIDEOS, NINTENDO GAMES,
ELECTRONICS, AND MORE... http://
tinyurl.com/5zb87
1978 VOLVO 244 DL. $1200 O.B.O
190,000 km, freshly tuned, Thule roof
rack bike and surfboard carriers, new
speakers $ CD Deck, extra snow tires, air
cared, very reliable, no current repairs or
service needed. Call Rad 604.736.3543.
VANCOUVER PROGRAMMER
LOOKING FOR LOCAL,
INDEPENDENT BANDS FOR
RADIO SHOW. Email
localkidsmakegood@hotmail.com
oiumeer upportuniues
ACTIVIST/ORGANIZER WORK
FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE NATIONAL
COMMUNITY. Organization seeks
politically committed people to organize
for better schools, housing, wages &
immigrant righrs. Call: 1.800.796.6830
or email: acornrecruit@acorn.org
iseeiianeous
MALE COCKATIEL NEEDS A GOOD
HOME. Sadly cannot keep. Cage and
supplies included. Contact Christina
604-438-6037
FOR STUDENTS!
looking for a roommate?
Got something to sell?
Or just have an announcement
It you are a student, you can
place classifieds for FREE!
For more information,
visit Room 23 in
the SOB (basement)
oreall822«
UNIVERSITY BOULEVARD fARCHitEeTURM COMPETITION
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Three Visions
April 1-10, 2005
Come see the future of UBC
.**:*?y&
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Aerial View of University Boulevard
MORRIS AND HELEN BELKIN ART GALLERY
University of British Columbia 1825 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z2
Tel: 604.822.2759 Fax: 604.822.6689
www.belkin-gallery.ubc.ca "jH
EXHIBITION HOURS
Opening Night (April 1): 5:30-8pm
Monday •• Friday: 10am -7 pm
Saturday - Sunday: 12-5 pm ;/|
UNIVERSITY TOWN
A Sustainable Future
CAMPUS COMMUNITY POLL
Students, faculty, staff, alumni, professor emeriti and
university residents can vote at the exhibit or on-line
from April 1-10,2005.
THREE TEAMS
• Allies and Morrison Architects (London)
Proscenium Architecture & Interiors Inc. (Vancouver)
• Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners (Santa Monica)
Hughes Condon Marler: Architects (Vancouver)
• Patkau Architects Inc. (Vancouver)
For more information about the competition, the campus
community poll or University Town, please visit:
www.universitytown.ubc.ca
Quebec education minister makes
two "final offers'1 in fourteen hours
Student leaders reject
both offers
by Aliyana Traison
THE MCGILL DAILY
MONTREAL (CUP)-The Quebec
government has demonstrated it
is feeling the pressure from the
province-wide student strike,
increasing its reinvestment offer
by over 40 per cent in just 14
hours. Students are demanding
the government return the $103
million it cut from grants and bursaries last March.
Leaders of Quebec's two largest
student groups, the Federation
Etudiante Universitaire du Quebec
(FEUQ) and the Federation Etudiante Collegiale du Quebec (FECQ),
walked out of a meeting with
Education Minister Jean-Marc
Fournier the night of Mar. 15,
after he offered to help alleviate
some students' debt by reinvesting
$29 million in 2005-2006.
Fournier's offer of $29 million,
which would increase gradually to
$85 million in 2009-2010, would
have been available to undergraduate university students only, and
would have been based on a debt
remission program for students
who graduated within the period
they intended to complete their
degree in and had the most substantial debts. Fournier emphasised this was his final offer.
According to Nick Vikander,
FEUQ's vice-president of university affairs, the two student groups
rejected Fournier's offer because
it would have aided only a minority of students, and because there
is no telling if the Liberals will be
in power in five years to follow
through with their promised
increase.
"The offer is not acceptable
because the money offered was
much less than the $103 million
that was cut. All that is guaranteed
is for next year, and it only helps
about a third of students on financial aid/ he said.
Vikander added because the
government has recently decided
to cancel $22 million for income-
contingent debt repayments, its
offer would ultimately have
amounted to a reinvestment of
only $ 7 million.
FEUQ and FECQ left their meeting with Fournier at 9:30 p.m. on
Mar. 15. At 11 a.m. the next day,
Fournier laid another final offer
on the table: $41.5 million, to
increase to $95 million in 2009-
2010. An estimated 35 per cent of
students on financial aid would
benefit from this program.
Vikander said the student
groups rejected this offer as well
because it came with the same
conditions: it would be available to
only a small number of students,
and the increase it promised could
not be guaranteed.
He said while FEUQ would consider any offer the government
makes, the group demands a full
reinvestment of the $ 103 million cut
"The minister says this is the
final offer, but we've been asking
for $103 million. If the government has another proposal to
offer, we're willing to sit down and
hear what they have to say, but
we're still asking for $103 million,* he said.
He   added   Fournier's   quick
"THE MINISTER SAYS THIS
IS THE FINAL OFFER, BUT
WE'VE BEEN ASKING
FOR $103 MILLION. IF
THE GOVERNMENT HAS
ANOTHER PROPOSAL TO
OFFER, WE'RE WILLING TO
SIT DOWN AND HEAR
WHAT THEY HAVE TO SAY,
BUT WE'RE STILL ASKING
FOR $103 MILLION,"
-Nick Vikander
FEUQ
change of mind demonstrates students should not accept such a
small reinvestment offer just
because it is labeled as final.
"Either the government actually
looked for more money, or it wasn't
actually the final offer,* he said.
After meeting with student
leaders, Fournier decided to make
the $41.5 million offer pubHc, in
order to gauge response from students at large. The government
placed ads in a number of newspapers and in Metro tunnels,
explaining the offer and saying
students would be better off with
this than they were before the
$ 103million was cut last March.
But Vikander said the ads are
misleading because they do not
describe the logistics of the debt
remission program, such as who
would be eligible and how it would
be administered. Since the appearance of the ad, a number of student unions have already voted to
renew their strikes.
"If students found this acceptable, they wouldn't have voted to
keep on striking," he said. "If
we're going to win this, students
are going to have to keep up the
pressure."
Fournier was not available for
comment. II
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PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
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TOUGH GUY, EH? Currently transit police can bust fare evaders, but not much else, nic fensom photo
Transit constables to pack heat
New police unit
will bear arms on
the SkyTrain later
this year
by Dan McRoberts
NEWS EDITOR
The Lower Mainland's new transit
police force will carry sidearms
when on the job, the provincial
government announced Monday.
The "designated constables"
will have the authority to enforce
drug laws, execute outstanding
warrants and arrest people who
commit crimes outside of a
SkyTrain station. At present
SkyTrain officers can only enforce
fares, deal with liquor problems or
intervene in assaults on SkyTrain
property and are unarmed.
The new constables will face
the same dangers as the
Vancouver Police Department and
RCMP and they require the same
protection, according to the
Ministry of Public Safety.
The SkyTrain police will form a
unit regulated through the provincial Police Act, said Bob Kind, chief
officer for the Greater Vancouver
Transportation Authority Police
Service. This explains the need for
the officers to carry handguns, he
said.
"The decision revolved around
the fact that the staff are provincial police officers. They are
required to carry the tools to do
the job, just like officers in Port
Moody or Delta."
All constables will have to
undergo firearms training, meaning that it will be several months
before any of the armed officers
begin patrolling the Expo and
Millennium lines. The government estimates that the 82 constables will be on the job by the end
of the year.
The decision to arm the new
police force with handguns has the
Bus Rider's Union (BRU) up in
arms.
"It is an outrageous example of
the criminalisation of bus riders,"
said Jennifer Efting, an organiser
with the BRU, a grassroots group
of transit users that protest fare
increases.
"First they raise fare evasion
fines and then they give their transit officers guns," Efting said. "We
need to question if this is meant to
increase the safety of riders."
The public transit system is
being turned into de facto private
business through the introduction
of armed officers, she said.
"There is the sense of safety as
a primary issue...but it seems that
the police are there to enforce the
fares and not for safety."
The government has planned to
introduce the new constables
since April 2004, when Solicitor
General Rich Coleman announced
the formation of the unit.
Approximately 160,000 passengers use the SkyTrain each day.
The Toronto Transit Commission
(TTC) sees nearly eight times as
many users on an average day and
the TTC special constables do their
duties armed only with pepper
spray and batons.
Toronto's transit cops are
authorised to perform police
duties within transit stations but
can continue pursuit and arrest of
perpetrators off of TTC property.
"They don't have to stop at our
doors," said TTC spokesperson
Marilynn Bolton. "They can continue into the street, but they are not
out arresting jaywalkers."
The TTC has had special constables for many years, Bolton said. A
sub-unit of the Metro Toronto
Police, the special constables
haven't always carried the equipment they do now.
"Their responsibilities have
changed...the amount of weaponry
they [the special constables] have
now is more than they ever had
before." II
}■
News
Briefs
Tax time is the right time
As April approaches, collecting T4
slips is probably not very high on the
list of priorities for most
students. That's why the AMS and
the UBC Tax Assistance Clinic
for Students are teaming up to make
the process as painless as possible.
Next Thursday will see a two-
hour tax clinic complete with an
extra hour of questions and
answers. Facilitating the sure-to-be
fun-filled   afternoon   is   Rhonda
Sterritt, the coordinator of
Outreach Services for the Canada
Revenue Agency.
The excitement begins at 1pm
on March 31 in SUB 214/216 and
there is no cost for UBC students to
attend.
The deadline to file your taxes is
April 30. Tax forms for UBC fees
are available online at the Student
Service Centre.
It's a birthday party!
Brock Hall should be having its
midlife crisis soon.
The building you go to pay
tuition and housing fees turned
fifty Monday. Cake was had and
chocolates in the shape of the UBC
crest were handed out to every
qualified  student  regardless  of
their ability to pay for them. Tuum
est, indeed.
The original roof of Brock Hall
burned down in 1955, and students
raised the funds to replace it.
Ruckus in SUB Plaza
Those shouts of anguish you hear
south of the Student Union
Building have nothing to do with
anti-abortion displays. UBC REC's
Storm the Wall is back, blocking
traffic and making noise for yet
another year.
Students will be able to get back
to enjoying peaceful lunches on the
grassy knoll by the weekend, but
hurry! The GAP display is scheduled
for next Thursday.
Read more about the wall
stormin' in our features section. IB
3
University Boulevard
architectural poll set
for first week in April
"None of the
above" option
eliminated from
online vote
by Sarah Bourdon
NEWS EDITOR
As part of UBC's architectural competition for University Boulevard,
campus community members will
be asked to participate in a poll starting next week that will allow them to
select their favourite design for the
centre of campus.
The poll, which will run from
April 1 to 10, asks participants to
choose one of three possible designs,
each created by an architectural
team in the competition. Feedback
from the poll will be passed on to a
jury for consideration in the final
selection.
"Our intention was to have our
community vote, that was the starting point," said Linda Moore, a
spokesperson for University Town.
In an architectural competition,
the university must operate within
certain guidelines laid out by the
Architectural Institute of British
Columbia—though the poll offers a
chance for community input, its
results will be used as "information"
and are not binding for the jury.
However, the poll is still a crucial
tool, according to Moore.
"There is still huge value in the
vote," she explained. "This is everyone's opportunity to have a say in the
selection."
One recent change to the poll
questions will see the removal of the
previously promised "none of the
above" option, which would have
offered a chance for poll-takers to
officially abstain from selecting any
of the designs.
Angus McAllister, a polling consultant used by UBC, determined
that offering a "none of the above"
option in the poll could bias the
results.
"It's a leading question in that
there may be other reasons that
someone doesn't want to choose
options A, B or C," said Norman
Sippert, the consultation coordinator
for University Town.
Despite the removal of the option,
poll organisers affirm that the
process will provide people with
ample opportunity to put forward
their ideas and concerns. Poll-takers
have the option of providing comments on the development and have
space to express positive and negative aspects of each design proposal.
"There will be many opportunities for people to comment on the
designs, we really encourage their
feedback,* said Sippert.
Still, supporters of the "none of
the above" option were disappointed
with its removal.
"There are two basic reasons for
wanting 'none of the above': either
you dislike all three designs because
you think they're all bland or poorly
laid out, or because you feel that the
development itself should not go forward,"   said   Darren   Peets,   the
Graduate Students' Society representative on the University Town
Steering Committee. "In that there
was next to no pubHc support for the
plan when it was passed...I suspect
most people voting for 'none of the
above' would feel the latter."
Comments from participants will
be grouped together and presented
to the jury, according to Gavin Dew,
VP Academic for the Alma Mater
Society (AMS).
"In the analysis, although comment answers are not immediately
quantifiable, because they are qualitative answers, those answers can be
coded together," said Dew. "If one
answer says 'I like the spacious
atmosphere' and another says 'I like
the open space,' in the end the overall message would be that a certain
number of participants want open
space."
The AMS will be focusing on getting students involved in the poll,
although Dew indicated that the window for student participation may be
smaller than the actual time span set
aside for the process.
"The major focus of the AMS' promotion particularly is going to be
April 4 to 7...It will be difficult to get
students out on the weekends, and
the 8th is kind of a write-off due to
Arts County Fair," explained Dew.
The    poll's    organisers    have
"WE REALLY ENCOURAGE
PEOPLE TO VOTE, BUT
ALSO TO ATTEND THE
DISPLAYS, TO SEE THE
DRAWINGS AND TO SEE
THE MODELS AT THE
GALLERY...WE'RE MAKING
IT REALLY OBVIOUS THAT
THE POLL IS HAPPENING."
-Norman Sippert
Consultation Coordinator
University Town
launched a widespread campaign to
promote the poll and are hoping for
a good response from UBC conununity members.
"We really encourage people to
vote, but also to attend the displays,
to see the drawings and to see the
models at the gallery...We're making
it really obvious that the poll is happening," explained Sippert.
A strong turnout for the poll will
make a clear statement to the jury,
added Moore.
"At this point we anticipate quite
a large turnout," said Moore. "We'd
like to encourage an even bigger
turnout and that has been our
challenge."
Students, faculty, staff, alumni
and on-campus residents are encouraged to participate in the poll, which
can be accessed online at www.uni-
versitytown.ubc.ca as of April 1.
In addition, the public is invited
to view the three designs, which will
be on display at the Morris and
Helen Belkin Art Gallery, located at
1825 West Mall, from April 1 to 10.
"It should be impossible not to
know that the poll is happening,"
said Dew. II
■Xi'i
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PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
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Australian in Character, Internationa/ in Perspective
y^ocated on Queensland's subtropical Gold Coast, Bond University
/   has a national and international reputation in specialised areas. It is
JLm* consistently ranked Number One in national surveys of graduate
satisfaction by the Graduate Careers Council of Australia.
Bond University Faculty of Law features:
it Professional degrees for undergraduates (LLB) and graduates (JD)
* International student body, with many Canadians
* Personalized education: smallest class sizes in Australia
t*t Flexible tri-semester academic calendar: start in January, May or
September
* Discretionary admissions: Australia has no LSAT requirement
For information on the supplementary study required to enter a Canadian bar
admission program, see our web site - wwrW.bond.edu.au/lawAntemat/canada.htm
For more information please contact:
lnternational@bond. edu.au
or
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Ph: (905) 318-8200
info@komconsultants. com
CRICOS CODE: 00017B
BOND UNIVERSITY
www.bond.edu.au
Lewis brings fight against AIDS to UBC
Veteran diplomat and
humanitarian awes sold
out Chan Centre
by Dan McRoberts
NEWS EDITOR
Canada must fulfill its promises to
the developing world if the AIDS pandemic is to be fought effectively,
Stephen Lewis said Sunday.
Lewis, a former Ontario MP and
Canadian ambassador to the United
Nations, now serves as the UN
Secretary General's Special Envoy on
ADDS in Africa. He spoke to a sold out
Chan Centre for two gripping hours.
"Africa is the epicenter of a number of international crises that illumine the nature of the global system
that we operate in," Lewis said, referring to his attempts at convincing the
developed world to commit financial
resources for developing countries.
"Courage is not often expressed
in the current system of multilateralism," Lewis said. The diplomat's
voice soared with impassioned
anger as he described the troubling
circumstances in Darfur, the eastern Congo and Uganda in sometimes horrifying detail.
"None of this is new internationally. We've been battling these same
themes for years," he said.
The focus of Lewis' presentation
was the HIV/AIDS pandemic, however, and he trembled with emotion as
he spoke to the eerily silent audience.
"I wasn't prepared for the death,"
he said, referring to his first months
as the UN envoy. "I didn't understand
how pervasive would be the death."
The AIDS virus has killed 25 million in Africa alone, and it is exploding across the impoverished regions
of Eastern Europe and the Caribbean.
"We've turned AIDS into a chronic
disease here, but it is still the nightmare of nightmares in the developing world," Lewis said.
The countries most devastated
by the virus are quickly losing their
capacity to combat the pandemic as
they lose labourers and educators,
he said.
"When they can
come to grips with
the virus they have
lost the capacity to
respond."
There are nearly 15 million AIDS
orphans in southern Africa, Lewis
said, including 23 LEWIS
per cent of all children in Zambia.
"What is happening has no historical precedent. Nothing that has happened could prepare the world for
this."
Lewis also spoke of Africa in fond
terms, describing it as a "continent of
enormous resistance." He identified
women's groups and grassroots
organisations as particularly praiseworthy for their efforts in the fight
against AIDS. It is the 'Western' world
that is failing in the battle, according
to Lewis.
"We can turn this all around...if we
can only get the Western governments to give what they promised."
Lester Pearson's Liberal government promised to devote 0.7
per cent of Canada's gross domestic product to foreign aid in 1969.
That target remains an elusive
one in 2005. Despite a $350 million price tag for international
assistance this year, Canada's percentage figure hovers around 0.3
of GDP.
Canada is the only G8 country
with a budget surplus, meaning that
it should be a world leader in terms
of aid, Lewis argued.
"It would be such a pleasure if
Canada decided in a coherent manner to take the consistent lead," he
said. "The people of this country support that kind of human commit-
ment.J've always dreamed and will
always dream that Canada will play
that role."
After a thundering ovation from
those assembled, Lewis was asked if
extensive corruption in the developing world prevented more aid from
getting to those who needed it.
"I wouldn't overdo the corruption factor," he said. "It is serious...but corruption is just as much
the fault of the West. It's time we
stopped being so self-righteous
about it."
In response to another question,
Lewis acknowledged that recent
changes in political leadership
have led to some progress.
"There have been major
changes in African leadership in
recent years," he said. Closer to
home, Lewis said that Paul Martin
has been more receptive to discussions about HIV/AIDS than Jean
Chretien ever was.
Lewis ended the night with an
appeal for students to make a personal contribution.
"As you speak tonight, I find
myself despairing," one student in
attendance said. "I think my generation feels like they cannot wait for
those in power."
Recounting his own initial brush
with Africa as a young attendee at a
socialist world youth conference in
Ghana, Lewis encouraged bis audience to become directly involved in
development assistance.
"It's a good thing to take a chunk
of fife and spend some time on the
front fines in a developing country," he said, before leaving the
stage to a second standing ovation.
"Young people today can join
organisations that make change in
the world or become part of acade-
mia, but they should set out a group
of principles and pursue them in
an organised way." 11
Nation-wide public drug safety network created
by Sarah Bourdon
NEWS EDITOR
A conference between consumer
advocacy groups in Vancouver
Friday led to the formation of a
nation-wide network designed to
give consumers more input in the
area of drug safety.
The groups, which included
DES Action Canada, PharmaWatch
and l'Union des consommateurs,
hope to increase the public's role
in drug approvals, post market
surveillance and adverse drug
reaction (ADR) reporting.
"We want to support immobilised Canadians so that they can
play a more active role in the public
policy arena," said Colleen Fuller,
president of PharmaWatch. "The
ultimate goal is to basically enhance
the benefits of medicine and to
reduce the harmful side effects."
Consumers are an "untapped
resource" when it comes to the
effects of drugs but their voices are
unheard in drug safety issues,
according to the groups. Changes
allowing greater consumer input
will ensure that drug safety and
effectiveness are prioritised.
The network, which will be
referred to as PharmaWatch
/PharmaVeille, will act as a web-
based source of information on
prescription drugs, drug manufacturers and about Health Canada.
"We cast a very critical eye on
these areas," said Fuller. "We're not
just going to pass along drug com
pany propaganda, we want to provide objective and analytical work
on the website."
Consumers will be able to directly report adverse drug reactions to
the network through the website,
which will include security measures to protect users' privacy.
In addition to providing information, the network will aim to
influence the way Health Can
ada regulates prescription drugs
and will emphasise the importance of consumer ADR reporting,
according to PharmaWatch
representatives.
"If there are a lot of adverse
drug reactions, you have to start
wondering, how do these drugs get
on the market?" explained Fuller.
"Citizens are really going to have to
become much more active in this
area. We need a stronger regulatory
framework."
At the conference, Dr James
Wright from UBC's Therapeutics
Initiative gave a keynote address,
discussing how the damage done
by Vioxx, a drug recently withdrawn from the market, could have
been minimised.
"[The Thereapeutics Initiative]
had published information that led
to concerns about those drugs in
2002," said Wright. "We publish
information on our website, that's
how we try and get it out to other
people and regulators. Despite the
fact that we did this in this particular case, there wasn't any reaction
on behalf of the regulators."
In the case of Vioxx, a more
comprehensive regulatory system
could have been more efficient at
detecting the warning signs, said
Wright.
"There was information that
should have led them to be more
concerned about these drugs a little bit earlier," he said.
The Therapeutics Initiative will
be "complimentary" to the network—the organisation's main goal
is getting information to the public
by presenting the results of their
research to physicians and pharmacists in BC.
"More and more people are
becoming aware that prescription
drugs and their use in many age
groups is becoming increasingly
problematic and we need to be
more informed about them."
The network is waiting for funding that will help them move quickly in establishing the website and
beginning to monitor consumer
experiences with prescription
medicine, according to Fuller.
"The more information people
have about the drugs, the better
and safer they are," she explained.
"There have been several studies
that have shown that the quality of
information that comes from consumers is actually higher than
information from other sources.
We want the public to be more
engaged on the issue."
Health Canada representatives
were not available for comment
before press time. 11
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PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
A verified formula
for super success
PhD student wins lucrative fellowship for computer skills
5
by Dan McRoberts
NEWS EDITOR
Domagoj Babic came to Vancouver
looking for a rich academic environ-
menttp pursue his doctorate in computer science. Almost two years
later, Babic is now one of the richer
parts of that department
Earlier this month in Washington
State, Babic and eleven other graduate students across North America
were awarded the Microsoft
Research Fellowships for 2005. The
scholarship provides hill coverage
for two years of tuition and fees in a
doctoral program.
In addition, the winners are provided with money for hving expenses and a conference and travel
allowance. The computing giant
even throws in a fully loaded PC and
the opportunity to interview for a
prestigious internship with the
company.
For Babic, the greatest opportunity that comes from his winning the
scholarship is the chance to share
ideas with Microsoft staff.
'I've already been to Seattle a couple of times/ he said. "It's great to be
able to discuss my research.'
Babic specialises in formula verification, a mundane but vital part of
the creation of new computer software and hardware.
*We try to represent hardware
and software as mathematical models and reason about their properties/ said Babic. "I work with the
verification of control systems. It's
like checking a car to make sure
that the brakes work when they are
supposed to/
Verification is a field that is growing rapidly, according to Babic.
The complexity of the systems is
always increasing and the complexity of the necessary verification grows
exponentially/ he said. "Not developing it [verification] could cause
problems and stop progress/
A high percentage of development costs for software or hardware
products are devoted to verification,
Babic said.
'It's extremely important for society—you depend on working electronics every day/
Babic completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees in his
native Croatia, but felt that is was
necessary to come to North America
for his PhD.
There is quite a difference in academic systems/ he said. "The
University of Zagreb is quite small
for the doctorate, there isn't much
exposure to other ideas."
Babic was convinced to attend
UBC by Alan Hu, a professor in the
Computer Science department He
OK COMPUTER: UBC student Domagoj Babic is the recipient of a prestigious Microsoft Research
Fellowship for his work in formula verification in computer science, yinan max wang photo
arrived in September of 2003.
"We shared a matching interest
in our research," Babic said. The
department is a great environment"
Given that Babic was selected
from among 133 applicants, his
research also interests Microsoft
Research.
"We look for students that can
become leaders in their area of
research," said Daniel Shapiro, the
Canadian academic program man
ager for Microsoft.
There is a rigorous screening
process for the fellowships, which
have been offered since 1997,
Shapiro said.
"All the winners meet the requirements of MSR interns, which are
quite impressive."
While the recipients do not necessarily go on to work tor Bill Gates,
Shapiro said that the point of the fellowships is to encourage research.
"Students struggle to pay their
tuition, so this is Microsoft's contribution to support the great work that
they do."
Babic, for one, hasn't decided if
he wants to work for his new benefactors. He may return to Croatia
after completing his degree.
"It all depends on what offers I
get* he said. "I like Vancouver very
much. I have made no final decisions yet" a
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PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
2138 WESTERN PARKWAY, VANCOUVER
(on Campus, beside Bank of Montreal)
Large Selection of
DVD, VHS & GAMES
for your enjoyment!
Reservations 60A-221-9355
COOPERATE AND COPE WITH HIGH
HOUSING PRICES
HOUSEMATE WANTED: Mature (50s), quiet, responsible female
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Meet us for Sunday lunch. Contact Corazan and Peter at:
Phone: 604.267.1858 (evenings) • Email: pcrorata@hotmail.com
COMMUNITY OPEN  HOUSE
Draft 2005 UBG Strategic Transpprtation /Plan
UNIVERSITY. TOWN
You are invited to provide feedback on the draft updated 2005 Strategic
Transportation Plan (STP). The STP is a long-term policy framework for increasing
transportation choices at UBC in support of Trek 2010 and the Official Community
Plan. The draft 2005 STP updates the original 1999 document.
The update process examined the STP objectives UBC has achieved, the objectives
still outstanding, and identified key issues for the next five years leading to 2010.
The community provided feedback on all STP objectives via open houses, online
feedback forms, and the Transportation Planning Advisory Committee.
The upcoming open houses will feature the draft 2005 STP. There will be display
board information and feedback forms for your comments. Please attend if you
have questions or would like more information from staff about transportation
planning at UBC.
OPEN HOUSES:
Where:
Student Union Building (SUB) Concourse
6138 Student Union Boulevard, UBC
When:
Tuesday, April 5, 2005
Wednesday, April 6, 2005
10:00am - 2:00pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm
Directions:
For directions to the Student Union Building please visit www.maps.ubc.ca.
For further information contact:
Karly Henney. Planner, UBC Campus and Community Planning
e: karly.henney@ubc.ca
www.trek.ubc.ca
www.planning.ubc.ca
www.universitytown.ubc.ca
COMMEMORATE
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SATURDAY, MARCH !9
1NDIGENIZING THE ACADEMY:
ENHANCING STUDENTS'
EXPERIENCES
8:00 am to 5:00 pm, The Longhouse
MONDAY. NftRCH 21
KKKOFF EVENT
00 am to 3:00 pm,
SUB Ballroom
EREE NQVIE NIGHT
THE NORM THEATRE
Shake Hands With the Devil
A Time to Kill
illRCH 22
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OOWflfto 12:30 pm, BUCH D302
IVITY 101 I0RKSH0P
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OSTRNDING OF BROWN
Place Vanier Ballroom
MARCH 23-24
ART EXHIBIT BY THE FILIPINO
CfiNSDIflN YOUTH iSLLIflNCE
10:00 am to 3:00 pm SUB Concourse
UEBNESK MARCH 23
INTERROGATING RACISM 101:
PEER PERSPECTIVES WORKSHOP
11:00 am to 12:30 pm, SUB 215
A CONVERSATION
ONINTIRIGISM
AND INTERSECTIONIIOTY
1:06 pm to 4:00 pm, BUCH D114
HAGDAS MOVIES AT TOTEM PARK
7:00 pm-Mississippi Masala
9:30 pm-ln the Shadow of Gold Mountain
THURSMY. MARCH 24
HEADLINES THESTRE PRESENTS
'RAINBOW OF MSIRE"
1:00 pm to 5:00 pm, Norm Theatre
fRAPMK^
6:66 pm bnvv^rxis, SUB 215
ENTS ftRE FREE! UMU.STUDENTS.UBd.CR/ACCESS/EQUITY.CFM
UBCI Sponsored by: The Equity Ambassadors, Access & Diversity, Equity Office, Colour Connected,
SafeTogetherOUBC, First Nations House of Learning, Residence Life and the Innovative Project Fund.
econd chance
UBC baseball recovers from
devastating playoff loss
by Bryce McCrae
SPORTS WRITER
Along with the birds singing, the
sunny weather and the blossoming
trees, spring is the beginning of the
baseball season at UBC. With the
team beginning 'spring* training in
the cold days of January, March
marks the beginning of a new season for the men's team.
This year's team boasts numerous transfers that address the weak
area of the team they had last year-
depth. They've brought in eleven
players, including catcher Steve
Bell-Irving, a transfer from the
University of Hawaii and starting
pitcher Jonathan Forest (pronounced "Foray") from Chipola
Junior College in a bid to provide
depth and solidify themselves up
the middle—a problem that plagued
them last year through injuries.
New freshmen joining the team
include utility player Andy Herman,
catcher Fletcher Vynne, outfielder
Chris Head, second baseman
Anthony Hamilton and pitchers
Andrew Lafleur and Brent
Laysander. Another addition to the
team was junior third basemen Tim
Henderson.
With all the new players coming
one would expect there to be an
adjustment period while they become
familiar with the new team and players, however, second-year pitcher
Doug Grant says, "they all fit in real
well, our team chemistry is probably
even better then last year...everyone
gets along really well.*
UBC returns with 23 members
from last year's team that made it
within one win of the NAIA World
Series.
"We have the same core of the
team from last year," says junior
outfielder Jeff Tobin, "but our
biggest thing is our experience and
the approaches we can take out on
the field with us.*
Among those returning is the tall
left-handed pitcher Brad Ashman
who had a sparkling ERA of 2.39
last year while going 9-1. Joining
him in the rotation are Grant and
Forest to give UBC one of the top
starting rotations in the conference.
"Our top three starters are outstanding," says coach Terry McKaig,
"put those three up against any
other team and we have an
advantage.*
The bullpen is solid as well with
Doug Pasquali and Matt Miller providing outstanding relief for the
starters.
UBC has always had dominant
pitching, stretching back to the Jeff
Francis-Brooks McNiven years, but
the difference this year is the
offense. With another year of experience and after bringing in some
solid transfers, "this is by far the
most talented team we've had," says
McKaig.
"The biggest difference this year
is our offense,* he says, "we are
doing things we have never done
before in terms of the runs per
game scored.*
What then are the things UBC has
to focus on if they want to reach the
NAIA World Series for the first
time? Not looking ahead to far and
taking smaller steps.
"Consistency more then anything," says McKaig, "there is going
to be a lot of ups and downs during
the season, but we are hoping we
can continue a building block
process towards the playoffs.*
The teams overall goal is the
World Series and with the talent
they have it is hard not to see them
reaching it as long as they stay
focused.
"Everyone has a real drive to
win; every time we go out there we
work hard and know that we are a
good team,* says Grant, "we want to
win the World Series...and we have
the guys to do it.*
This appears to be one of the best
all-around teams in UBC baseball
history and if they work on the little
things and don't get ahead of themselves they should come back to
UBC as NAIA World Series
champions.
"The overall team goal is the
World Series,* says McKaig, "but if
you take care of the little things it'll
take care of the big thing." W
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1 PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
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Home opener doesn't disappoint
UBC baseball still
perfect after weekend series versus
Albertson College
by Sara Norman
SPORTS STAFF
As pitcher Brad Ashman threw the
first pitch of UBC baseball team's
opening home game, his breath
could be seen hanging in the air.
With the T-Birds six game-winning streak on the line, Saturday's
game against the Albertson
College Coyotes was slated to be a
tough one. But what transpired
between the top teams of the NIAI
Region I standings turned out to
be a breeze as UBC batted in nine
early runs to defeat the Coyotes
with an impressive 14-7 score.
"Today we showed what type of
athletic team we have this year,"
said head coach Terry McKaig.
UBC third baseman Brett
Murray was a huge contributor as
he went 3-4 with three RBIs.
According to McKaig, Murray was
one of the most valuable players in
the game.
"Brett Murray had a couple of
key hits and bases loaded double
that scored three," he said.
Left-handed     pitcher     Brad
RUN FOR COVER! UBC held a 5-4 lead in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader until it was rained out. yinan max wang photo
Ashman, pitched seven strong and
managed to keep the damage minimal, allowing only two runs. But
Ashman wasn't alone: he had
some strong defensive support by
outfielder Tyler Wilson that kept
Albertson out of reach.
Though there were occasional
periods of heavy rain, the players
continued to battle it out. By the
fourth inning it was clear that UBC
was going to win. A series of musical base runners for the Birds, led
by Murray's two run bases loaded
double started the fourth inning
rally. Subsequently, when batting,
junior Jeff Tobin took a ball to the
head and went to first. Once again
the bases were loaded. Up next
was Brendan Kornberger who
pulled through with a double to
scored two more runs.
By the end of the inning UBC
scored seven runs off Albertson's
right-handed pitcher Taylor Blair,
which effectively sealed it for the
Birds.
"Scoring that many runs [in the
fourth], we got up to a good lead,"
said McKaig. "[Albertson's] start
ing pitcher [Taylor Blair] is a pretty good pitcher so any time you
can get nine or ten [runs] off him
is good."
The ninth inning did see
Albertson score three runs off UBC
pitcher Andy Herman, but that still
only made the score 14-7.
Despite the lopsided victory,
there's still a long season ahead,
said McKaig.
"Hopefully we can keep swinging the bats throughout the year.
More than anything we have to
work on consistency and work
towards playing our best baseball
at the end of the year at the playoffs," he said.
The second game of the double-
header was cancelled due to the
rain. UBC was up 5-4 when the
game was called in the fifth. The
game will be made up on April 30.
The Birds now possess a 7-0
record and sit atop first in the
NAIA Region I standings. Next up
for the Birds is a double header
versus East Oregon State this
Wednesday at Nat Bailey Stadium.
The first game starts at 2pm. II
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This
by Alex Leslie and Simon Underwood features editor and features staff
UBC's largest intramural event begs the essential question:
Why build a 12 foot wall to climb and then promptly dismantle?
According to our panel of experts, it has something to do with
cheetahs, group psychology and possible imaginary worlds
n 1S08, a moustached French ethnographer named Arnold van Gennep popularized the term "rite of passage* to
describe an event that marks a change in
personal or sexual status. In ancient Greece,
it was facilitated via pederasty; among the
Samurai, Gembuku; among the Amish,
Rumspringa; and in Judeo-Chiistian traditions, the snip of a man's foreskin. And
throughout a modern life, certain events
seem to stand out as more formative than
others—school dances, failed first relationships, grievously spilled milk. Rites of
passage.
But surely van Gennep could have hardly
imagined the utility of his analytical category nearly a hundred years later at UBC.
According to the adept pamphleteers at
UBC Rec, we are smack in the middle of our
very own Vision Quest right here on campus; the escalator^ equivalent of every aspiring freemason's initiation rituals, the ass-
exposing rival to a frat initiation. We're
referring, of course, to Storm the Wall.
Every spring, the concrete concourse outside of the SUB comes alive with the chirping of birds, the rustling of newly-unfurled
leaves, and the scuffling and grunting of
hundreds of spandex-clad student bodies
struggling to surmount the 12 foot obstacle
that is the Wall. Product placement, hoarse
screams, police-tape, blasting Beyonce...the
knoll is alive with the sound of Storming.
Were an AWOL extra-terrestrial to land
on our planet, take a stroll, sip a latte and
observe the manic events taking place outside the SUB, it might pose a legitimate question: "Why are aU these humanoids flinging
themselves over this remarkable construction?* But Storm the Wall has been a popular intramural event and an institutional
mainstay at UBC since the early 1980s. Year
after year, UBC Rec wails its siren call for
students to complete a relay of swimming,
biking, running and sprinting en route to
the ominous structure, and year after year,
UBC students answer with inspired
Pavlovian vigour. Build it and they will
come, as a movie tragically starring Kevin
Costner once told us.
And year after year, we do.
The Rite of Spring
x, L<zx\ and the art of
Or.  Z<
i
bstacle creation
For those not familiar with the Storm the
Wall phenomenon, its Zen-like simplicity
can be summed up in seven simple steps.
# 1. Build a Giant Wall in front of the SUB.
Actually, build two. But the completion of a
circuit of Storm the Wall need only involve
one.
#2. Widely publicise the existence of the
Giant Walls. Techniques of publicity can
include but are not limited to: posters, pamphlets, printed advertisements, loudspeakers, hand-waving, peer pressure, and excited
jumping blended with an uninhibited yip-
yipping that celebrates but never ironises
the existence of said Giant Walls.
#3. Over a few short weeks, sign up hundreds of students to climb over said Giant
Walls in teams. Allow students to invent
witty names for said teams, exploiting bonds
of faculty affiliation, religious identity, and
in a tip of the hat to fluid social mores, sexual orientation!
#4. Instruct teams of students to swim,
bike run and sprint towards a Giant Wall,
and then climb over it as a group.
#5. Allow time to elapse.
#6. Disassemble the Giant Walls.
#7. Go on. with life as usual, almost as if
the Walls never existed.
Of course, nothing can be understood
WHAT ARE THEY REACHING FOR? Every Spring, UBC's turned upside-down by Storm the Wall. Stuck in the gutter, we struggle for the stars, nic fensom photo
from one perspective alone, and the compulsion of hundreds of students to surmount a self-made obstacle (—not simply
surmount, but Storm!) deserves considered
attention. To resolve the conundrum, tbe
Ubyssey sought the professional help of our
resident campus eggheads to storm the
Wall, cerebrally speaking of course. The Wall
as thought The Wall as animal. The Wall as
a costly student-funded wooden apparatus.
The Wall as a psychological barrier to defeat
If this Wall could talk, what would it say?
What are
they thinking?
Or, the Wall as bad
reauly snow prop
Storming walls isn't new. And neither is
building them: we've been doing it for cen-
turies. The Roman Emperor Hadrian spent
10 years building a wall in his own name in
AD 121. The Ming Dynasty took two centuries to build the Great Wall of China across
6,700 kilometers of prohibitive terrain. Our
beloved Walls spend a day in transport,
demand yet another to be erected and beautified, and still one more to be surrounded
by an artful mulch garden. What was once
built on the backs of slave labour is now delegated into the hands of dedicated Plant Ops
employees: three to load, two to deliver, one
to backhoe, and another duo to spread the
bark. All 240 cubic yards of it
But this isn't the only difference between
our Wall and it's historical predecessors.
Hadrian built his wall to keep out the Pictish
tribes; the Ming Dynasty to keep out the
Mongols and the Turkic tribes. While one
can certainly imagine  idle footsoldiers
engaged in gay, Great Wall-related horseplay, or perhaps a pole-vaulting Centurion,
these ancient fortifications were meant for
defense. If the detailed depictions in
'Where's Waldo Now?' can be trusted as one
hopes they can, we know that the Crusaders
faced vats of boiling oil while scaling the
Syrian walls. But our modern day holy
warriors can now rely on the punctiliously
copper-toned, sinew-gossamered arms of
the UBC Rec staff to hoist them over, even if
their physical capabilities fail. The only true
aggressor is nefarious Mother Nature who
with a few crystalline snowflakes can quash
the dreams of even the hardiest competitor.
But rain, hail, sleet; her conventional
weapons are useless against the cohesive
power of Team Spirit In short, when you
face The Wall, the only enemy is yourself.
Wax on. Wax off.
So why bother? Surely there are enough
obstacles in the life of the modern civilian.
In a Western world where escalators replace
stairs, where Bic pens have soft-grips, where
toilet stalls have handrails to aid even the
most able in heaving their relieved frames
from the ceramic thrones, why create yet
another obstacle? Why build that wall? Why
not follow tbe Ubyssey example and just contract out to the experts?
Ara Norenzayan, a psychologist and professor working in the Culture and Cognition
lab at UBC, offers one explanation.
Apparently, some people seem to have a
'thrill-seeking motive* that compels them to
seek out situations where they put themselves at risk. Consider it the Mountain Dew
demographic, delineated by *a distinct personality trait* high on "sensation-seeking.*
Or there's the Against-All-Odds-I-Shall-
Overcome demographic. Remember those
posters in your Grade 8 Algebra class? Not
the Garfield "I Hate Mondays* variety, or the
ones depicting kitties falling out of trees with
captions reading *Uh-Oh!', but the ones that
inspired you to kick the shit out of polynomials. Determination! Perseverance! No
matter the exponential challenge, you must
conquer your fears!
According to Naranzayan, there's an
amygdala somewhere in our skulls, "which
is sort of like the brain's alarm—it can signal
a threat It's loosely connected with our reasoning abilities...so we can [evaluate] our
fears even though sometimes the alarm can
be so strong that it can lead to a feeling of
being overwhelmed.* But that's why some
people participate. "An underlying motive
tion is to overcome one's fears...we [all] have
our demons and often it's quite a liberating
experience for individuals to face these fears
instead of running away from them,* he
claims. But once these fears are proven
false by the utility of one's own actions, "you
realize that you aren't defeated by the fear."
While some remain wishy-washy wallflowers, UBC has created 22 mini-generations of wall-ready individuals. Armed with
the knowledge that the Wall is friend, not
foe, individuals can look forward to promising careers as high-flying CSIS agents and
massage therapists who hoist themselves
onto the shoulders of upright NBA power
forwards to work their magic. And whether
or not we are neurologically predisposed to
climbing a Giant Wall, our social psychologist explains that "overcoming obstacles in
and of themselves is a very rewarding thing,
even if we...create those obstacles
ourselves.*
But never forget that the Wall is one
exploitative beyotch. The sense of accomplishing something as a team is an important human motivation...when we get
involved in these coalitions our psychology
works as if we are dealing with kin." The Arts
Undergraduate Society president becomes
your sister-in-arms, that obnoxious rugby
player your kindred spirit "Our psychological tendencies are in a sense exploited in
groups like this"; even though Naranzayan
notes that groups of burglars statistically
fare worse than thieves who work alone.
is a jungie out there
Or/ man versus chimp
ii
hi
r\nci tne chirnp wmsi!
But whether you're a team player or an
Ironwoman, you've got nothing when it
comes to the apes. Is this an example of our
evolutionary decline? According to UBC
Zoologist Sara Otto, it just might be. "Any
sort of great ape would beat humans at the
entire course," says Otto. The same thing,
incidentally, goes for Cromagnons and
Neanderthals. "I just think that a gorilla
would get to that wall and not need help."
What about chimps? "Chimps are a bit smaller. So you might have to scale down the wall
according to body size.* Of course, any wall
built to scale for Chimps would slay any
innocent bystander with sheer cuteness.
The bigger problem would be the swimming and the bicycling, says Mark Collard,
an Anthropologist here at UBC. "There are
obviously plenty of popular photographs of
chimps on bicycles, but I've not come across
any evidence to suggest that one of them has
been taught to pedal a bike," he claims,
although he'd wager that our closest living
relatives might be able to master the pedal-
ing section of the course, with a little bit of
practice. Apparently, the problem-solving
acumen required by those who accept the
challenge of the Wall is also shared by
acrobatic mammals who enjoy spending a
large portion of their time eating bananas
and plucking fleas from their fur. But
chimps could present a problem as participants in UBC's rite of passage. "Intimidation
and inter-group aggression are particularly
noteworthy,*   says   Collard.   *I  certainly
wouldn't want to compete for resources for
one..."
The fairest thing would be a multi-
species animal team that the course is
designed to cater to our human capabilities.
Order of Canada winning UBC Zoologist
David Jones mulls over the optimal mixed
team for the intramural event
"I've been thinking about a team of animals... [a] Cheetah for the 400 m [sprint],
Gazelle for the 1500 [run], Dolphin for the
swim. Bear for the bike bit (and that is where
the humans will win big time) and a howler
monkey for the Wall—it could let out an
appropriate yell of victory," Jones explains.
He sidenotes as a helpful addendum,
"Really, I don't think any other primates
except humans would be stupid enough to
bother!"
Otto might concur, although she notes
that apes engage in "bizarre mating rituals"
that are essentially contrived competitions.
Male gorillas often engage in competition to
gain sexual favour with females, "and you
could say that it's necessary but I don't think
that it is, and a lot of times they do it in ways
that [don't] hurt each other." Wait, is it just
male apes? "No—there are a lot of changes
happening...in how [we] understand the
interaction between the sexes, and there's a
lot more in the control of the females than
originally thought* So everyone's culpable.
"Who knows...this might just be one more
obstacle to show how fit we are to the opposite sex." (Or the same-sex for that matter.)
"There's so much about our culture that
rewards competition," Otto adds.
Keepers of the wall
Or, who watches tne
\V/ ,   I o
w a ten men.'
In its final incarnation, the Berlin Wall boasted mesh-fencing, anti-vehicle trenches,
bunkers, barbed wire, and 300 watchtowers.
Here at UBC, the two walls are guarded
by a single brave soul who camps out
overnight beside the hallowed structures in
a minivan, ensuring that the sacred wooden
structures survive the perilous nighttime
hours. The vigilant watchman defends them
from notorious Wall "crashers'—those with
the gall to tackle Rec's 12 foot tall manifestations of teamwork, personal virility and
global citizenship.
This year, second year Arts student Justin
Lin bravely stepped into the shoes of nocturnal invigilator. Lin, courteous and monotone in dark jeans and sweatshirt perches
in the van, leaning away from the prodding
gleam of the interviewer's flashlight, an officious ghost in his laptop's blue facial wash.
What were his explicit instructions from
his superiors? "They told me to stay awake
and then if anyone comes I have... [He looks
down at his loudspeaker]...What is this, a
blaster? [The interviewer informs him it's a
loudspeaker] Yeah, okay, a speaker, a loudspeaker, and I got campus security's number and I got the RCMP's number and the
person in charge's number," he says. And
yet our hero is not without his troubles. "I
was going to bring a stick but I forgot" he
notes regretfully. But his sorrows do not end
there. "I was planning to watch '24' all night,
but I forgot to bring the DVDs and I'm very
disappointed."
Lin, who claims to bench press 250 and
readily accepts the interviewer's suggestion
that he could consider himself the Nikita of
the Wall, explains that safety is the main
issue in the need for the all-night Wall
Watch. "Someone came already and they
crashed the wall...I was watching TV and
then he ran behind and I didn't see him. He
tried to jump the wall but then he failed. I
think he hurt himself, it was pretty funny,"
T.in elucidates. Also of utmost importance is
the need to protect the Wall from itself. "I
think on the first night there wasn't security
and I think a part of the Wall fell off...I'm not
sure...I don't know, that could happen,"
he adds, and enthuses, "It's just what UBC is,
I think. It's just like Arts County Fair. You
gotta go before you graduate."
Intrepid Mami Shimada couldn't wait.
Last Friday night, after leaving a Ski and
Board bzzr garden, 5'1 Shimada stormed
the Wall all by herself as a veritable Iron
Woman. "I just thought it would be fun," she
explains. "I was drunk." Was it exciting?
"Most definitely!" she exclaims. "[It] just
seemed like the thing to do at the time."
But as Shimada was hallway up, the van
door opened like the eyelid of a disturbed
attendant monster, a blue computer screen
loaming from within like a lazy pupil adjusting to the encroaching outer darkness.
Shimada saw a figure clad in gore-tex thug-
wear emerge from the vehicle. She promptly began her descent
"I jumped off and when I turned around,
the woman was all in my face, telling me
off." Although Shimada was unharmed by
the Wall, the guard continued to admonish
her. "She said something along the lines of
'What do you think you are doing!?...I can't
remember the rest [because] I tuned out"
Shimada's pal who was laughing from the
sidelines came over to defend her. He said
"a wall is right there in front of you...what
else can you do but climb it?" Is Shimada
going to try again, during designated Wall
Storming hours? "Actually, [I] have no desire
to storm the Wall. I wouldn't have [tried] if I
weren't intoxicated."
Of course, the victorious Shimada can
say that because she's done it She's stormed
the Wall. But what about the rest of us? Every
year, "7,000 participants—regret not participating," the UBC Rec pamphlet cautions us
with head-shaking sincerity. Without completing this rite of passage, it's as if we've
missed our Bat Mitzvahs, fumbled our First
Communions, lay comatose through our secular 21st birthdays. We are fat failures,
sweatily grasping our diplomas, painfully
aware that our UBC experience is incomplete. By the time you read this, registration
for Storm the Wall has long been closed.
Shimada may have had her moment of
glory, her illicit shot at scaling the vertical
mirror of personal might But for you, it's
already too late. ''
99 problems but a
wall ain't one
Or, why you shouldn't have
dropped Metaphysics
But there is a messiah, and she is a humble,
brilliant, and serious scholar who seems a
mite wary to be quoted in this piece.
Melinda Hogan is a metaphysician who
teaches at UBC and Kwantlen, and it is she
who shows tbe Ubyssey the light She
patiently tries to cram the basics of metaphysics into an hour-long session at
Starbucks, even while aware that a
lunkheaded student journalist will probably
make a complete dusterfuck of her craft But
in the end it's a simple questionthat manages to resonate. The best way to defeat the
Wall is not through group psychology, corralling a team of wildlife's most intramural-
adept offerings, or impulsive acts of inebriate-inspired courage, but through the power
of the mind.
'Why get all sweaty clambering over the
wall when you can just go in your imagination to a possible world, in which by
8snapping your fingers, the wall won't
exist?*
See. We can all be winners. H
«sT. "V
10
ihe. n 6f «£y-: magazine
PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
o
The path you choose can make all the difference.
Advanced Placement into Diploma Programs
Put Your Degree to Work
If you have a university degree In any field you
may be able to obtain a BCIT Diploma in one year.
BCIT's advanced placement into diploma and
post-diploma business programs can fast-track
you into a career in:
Financial Management
• Advanced Accounting
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- Finance/Financial Planning
• Taxation
Contact:
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604-432-8898 or fmgt@bcit.ca
Operations Management and
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^relevant business degree required
Contact:
Mary Tiberghien 604-432-8385 or itm@bcit.ca
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Apply now for Fall 2005
A POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTION
C Diploma in
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If you are a university graduate seeking a professional accounting designation, you can
fast-track your education through the UBC Diploma in Accounting Progam (DAP). UBC
DAP's curriculum is recognized by the Chartered Accountants School of Business
(CASB) and satisfies most of the CMA and CGA program requirements.
APPLICATION DEADLINES FOR 2005
Courses starting in May:
■ February 28, 2005 (International applicants)
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To find out more:
UBC Diploma in Accounting Program
Sauder School of Business
University of British Columbia
2053 Main Mall, Vancouver BC V6T1Z2
tel 604.822.8412    fax 604.822.2220
email dap@sauder.ubc.ca
www.sauder.ubc.ca/dap
Courses starting in September:
June 7,2005 (International applicants)
■ July 6,2005 (Canadian applicants)
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School of Business
THE UN I VERS IJY OF B RITIS H. CO LTD MB IA
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your boat
UBC olympic rower shares experiences
and prospects for the season
by Paul Evans
SPORTS STAFF
It has been seven months since the
Canadian men's eight rowing team,
crossed the finish line in Athens,
ten seconds off the winning mark.
The fifth-place finish came as a
shock to the team widely expected
to win the gold medal.
UBC rower Ben Rutledge will
always remember the day the gold
medal eluded him. 'It's something
that I'll probably never forget and
it's also something I still think
about daily/ he said. "It was a huge
disappointment...we were expected
to win.*
Rutledge, a fourth-year commerce student, went with fellow
UBC rower Kyle Hamilton to the
2004 summer Olympics. Looking
back on the experience, Rutledge
continues to find it frustrating: "I
still don't know what happened/
he said.
While Rutledge would have liked
to win the medal, he acknowledged
that there are other important
things in rowing. "For me, I think
an Olympic medal would probably
be best. I also think that I'm just trying to achieve my personal best as
well and I know that my personal
best would equal a gold medal/
Rutledge, in his fifth year of
rowing, is currently with the
men's eight varsity team and the
team's coach, Mike Pearce, is glad
to have former Olympians on the
team. "We really needed the presence of someone like Ben Rutledge
and Rob Weidemeyer to come into
the program and provide some of
the leadership that I think we've
been lacking over the last few
years/ he said.
Pearce is optimistic about the
team's prospects this season.
"We've got a much more experienced group than we have had for a
long time. The guys know what
they're doing out there now/
One difficulty facing the team
this year, as Rutledge noted, is a
personnel shortage. "A good program will have at least 16 to 20
[rowers] and what that does is it
creates competition within the
crew/
This, explained Rutledge, is
because a team can't always know
if they are rowing fast or if it is just
a favourable current making it
seem like they are moving fast; having another boat to compete with
alleviates this problem because it
they can gauge their speed by comparison. However,  the team cur
rently doesn't have the manpower
to field a second boat.
Pearce agreed that this can be a
problem, but added that the team
traveled to California this past
weekend to train with and race
against other rowers from
Stanford University and the
University of California at Berkley
for that reason.
"Racing always give you the best
feel for what you're doing well and
what you're not/ he said.
The importance of training in
rowing is something that Rutledge
sees as crucial. "With a lot of sports
and other team sports you can get
away with being a superstar and
having a lot of natural talent. You
can be really good but still be on a
crappy team. In rowing you can't be
really good and be on a crappy
team otherwise you just become
crappy/ he said.
Rutledge recalls training three
times per day, six days a week. This
devotion can sometimes isolate rowers from the outside world. "You're
not making any money, you've been
the world champions for two years
in a row, nobody still knows who you
are, there's no real benefit other
than personal satisfaction and having other people around you...
happy with what you're doing as
well/ explained Rutledge.
Furthermore, when Rutledge
was forced to stop rowing last year
due to injury, he described the
experience as withdrawal.
"Everyday you're working out as
hard as you can and getting these
endorphins and then all of a sudden you don't get them. It's pretty
much the same as taking heroin
away from somebody/ he said.
This may not make rowing the
most appealing of sports but all the
effort can eventually pay off, said
Rutledge, referring to his World
Championship victories. "There's
one day after the World
Championships where you're completely in the know that you're the
best in the world and that time, that
24-hour period, is just unbelievable/ He added that it is this feeling that motivates him to work
harder to achieve that again.
The challenge in winning this
year for the men's eight will be the
translating their impressive speed
into a good race performance said
Pearce. "It's one thing to row well
but it's quite another to race well;
that's really what our focus is on/
The UBC rowing team competes
against UVic in the Brown Cup at
the UBC Boathouse April 2. H
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PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
THE KILLS
No Wow
[Domino Record Company]
by Jenn Cameron
CULTURE STAFF
Sometimes described as dangerous and "gritty", this English duo
has a very raw sound that to put it
simply, annoys the hell out of me.
The songs blend into each other
and are filled with a mass of heavy
bass strumming coupled with
repetitive lyrics that builds up
to nothing.
No Wow, the Kills second
album, has just been released and
has proved, just like their sound,
that they have no climax. The sensual and coarse sound that they
debuted on their EP Black Rooster
in 2002 and refined in 2003 on
their first album, Keep on Your
Mean Side, hasn't evolved at all.
Their indifferent attitude and
smutty sound fooled us into think-
duo
ing they were cool. Shame on us.
For those unfamiliar with the
disappointment that is W and
Hotel—Allison Mosshart and Jamie
Hince—think of a less mainstream
and less imaginative-version of
the White Stripes. I admit I was
initially attracted to the bluesy
sound and the appeal of a girl-on-
boy bass-on-drums action. But
after one run-through of No Wow,
it's not that exciting anymore.
Maybe it's because on the entire
CD they only display a range of two
different tempos, or maybe it's
because they don't have bright red
and white outfits.
The first track on the album, fittingly entitled "No Wow" manages
to be haunting enough to grab
your attention, W's soulful voice
cuts through the chain of beats,
until it ends, and you realise that
nothing happened throughout the
entire song. It ended the way it
started without any sort of catch or
irregularity, despite an increase in
TUE KILLS
./NO tfCV,
dMuty
tempo and volume. Exciting.
As the album continues it
steadily gets worse, the heavy progressive bass becomes more and
more irritating, and the unimaginative lyrics continue along with it,
never coming to any sort of resolution in a chorus or rift.
The Kills just aren't spectacular
enough to be worthwhile in the
genre that they've chosen. They
have an interesting concept going
for them, and if they had come up
with something unique for this
album, they would be great. But
their inability to be inventive and
their eagerness to polish what
should be an untreated sound has
made them quite bland, a
Famous Amos
AMOS LEE
Sentimental Maniac
[Blue Note]
by Ritu Kumar
CULTURE STAFF
Tired of writing papers? Need to
relax and de-stress after midterms?
Then Amos Lee has the cure for you.
Having already toured with
Norah Jones in Europe and the US,
as well as Bob Dylan, Amos Lee is on
the path to fame and success with
the recent release of his self-titled
debut With a folk feel to his jazz flair
he is a unique blend of Eric Clapton,
Leonard Cohen, and Ray Charles.
Impressively, Lee gave up his
daytime profession as an elementary school teacher in Philadelphia
to pursue his passion of singing.
He has obviously impressed many
in the record industry as Norah
Jones is featured on piano in a
number of songs in the album,
and Lee has written all the songs
himself.
He expresses Ihimself beautifully
in the portraits that he paints in
every song he writes and sings: "I
saw my old landlord/We both said
hello, there was nowhere else to
go/cause his rent I couldn't
afford/relationships change." Lee's
expressive melody is reminiscent of
a quality of writing that is rarely
seen in song-writing nowadays.
With his cool jazz rhythms and
amazing vocal talents, Amos Lee is
a name to remember. This soulful
sweetie gets two thumbs up. II
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IT PAYS TO READ THE FINE PRINT: Vehicle models may not be exactly as shown. Offers are available from Toyota financial Services on approved credit to quafified retail lessees / purchasers. 'For the 2005 Echo
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Mission Tuition
Wed., March 23 @ SUB Concourse
11 am to 4 pm
Come find your way through the tuition maze, learn about the provincial election,
register to vote, and enter to win great prizes! Presented by the AMS External
Commission.
Bike To Wildwood Info Session
Wed., Mar. 23 @ SUB Rm. 245
4 pm - 5 pm
Bike, camp, and learn! The UBC Student Environment Centre is planning their Bike to
Wildwood event for the end of April.They'll be biking from UBC to Vancouver Island
to visit Wildwood, a sustainably-logged forest, and camp there overnight. There will
also be a guided tour of the site. Join this info session to find out more about the trip
and how to sign up. More details at http://www.ubcsec.ca.
ADVANCE NOTICE
Inaugural Minischool Wine and Beer Festival
Sat, Apr. 16 @ SUB Ballroom
12 pm to 4 pm
Tickets - $20 / available at minischool@ams.ubc.ca or 604-822-9342
The first annual Minischool Wine and Beer Festival takes place April 16 and features
more than 25 local and international wine and beer vendors. Feature presentations
include wine columnists James Nevison and Kenji Hodgson and Zayvin Haqq and
Rick Mohabir ofJustTherefortheBeer.com. A portion of the proceeds will go to the
Variety Club of BC.More details available at http://www.ams.ubc.ca/minischool.
AMMtfCaM
Storm the Wall
March 20-24,2005
It's back and more challenging than ever! Storm the Wall returns to UBC March 20
24 with 5-person teams competing in a swimming, running, cycling, running and
wall-scaling race against time. More details at http://www.rec.ubc.ca.
wipMmd
Help Us with Get Your Vote On!
The AMS Externa! Commission is looking for volunteers to aid in the logistical and
supervision of events and info sessions to create awareness about the upcoming
provincial election. Minimum time commitment of two hours per week. We're
looking for UBC students with enthusiasm, good teamwork skills and an interest in
politics. Contact Jessica Klug, VP of External Affairs, by phone at 604-822-6868 or via
e-mail at xcom@ams.ubc.ca for more details.
xs£i&x .
^EmcaB/eBMe
NEW FACE AT THE AMS
We are pleased to announce the
appointment of David Weils to
the position of AMS Policy Advisor,
effective March 14,2005. David
brings a wealth of experience in
not-for-profit sector, including
significant interaction with
government departments as well
as policy and organizational
development. More recently, David
has been operating his own private
consulting business with clients in
the public and private sector.
David's office is in Rm.238H and
he can be reached by phone at
604-822-8131
or e-mail at policy@ams.ubc.ca.
ife A'rf
Election Forum
Wednesday, March 23
UBC Law Building - Moot Court Room
7 pm - 9 pm
The UBC Environmental Law Group is holding a forum on Wednesday, March 23
in the Moot Court Room in the Law building for election representatives from
the Liberal party, the NDP, the Green Party, the Unity Party, and the Democratic
Reform Party. Coffee will be available at 7:15 and the actual forum will begin at
7:30 sharp. For more information on this event, please e-mail
ubcenvlaw@hotmail.com.
Writing Contest @ The Tyee.ca
Opinionated? Under 25? Enter TheTyee's writing contest and get your 15
minutes of fame and win great prizes.The Tyee wants to know what you think
about voting, the May 17th provincial election, what your first time voting was
like, etc. All political viewpoints are welcome.
Submissions should be 500 - 900 words on one of these topics:
• The election speech you would like to hear
• Voting's hot: Why you're going to vote
• Just say no: Why you're not going to vote
Submissions should be submitted by Friday, April 8 to contest@thetyee.ca.Four
winners will be selected and have their articles published at
http://www.thetyee.ca in their upcoming Election Central section. Prizes
include an iPod Shuffle, loaded with selections from local indie musicians, great
gear from local designers Smoking Lily, and t-shirts from Get Your Vote On and
Rock the Vote. More information at
http://www.thetyee.ca/contest/current/writingcontest.htm.
BC STV Referendum 2005
In addition to voting for political leaders in this year's provincial election, BC
voters will also vote either "Yes" or "No" on the following referendum question:
Should British Columbia change to the BC-STV* electoral system as recommended by the Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform?
*STV = Single Transferable Vote
The referendum question arose from the recommendations of the Citizen's
Assembly on Electoral Reform.The Citizen's Assembly is an independent,
non-partisan group of 160 British Columbians randomly selected from
nities around the province to review our province's electoral system.Their
mandate was to look specifically at how votes translate into seats in the British
Columbia Legislature.
The proposed change to the electoral system would mean that voters would see
two key changes from the current system.
1. Instead of writing on the ballot a single "X"for a single candidate, the voter
would be able to rank candidates (1,2,3, and so on) according to the voter's
personal preferences.
2. BC's constituencies would no longer be single-MLA electoral districts as they
currently are.There would be larger ridings, each with more than one MLA.The
legislature would remain at 79 seats, so the ratio of MLAs to population would
still be the same.
Confused? Want more information? Visit the following links to read up on why
your answer to this referendum question could change the local representation
and voter choice:
BC STV Electoral System
http://www.bc-stv.ca/index.htm
A website by former members of the Citizen's Assembly on Electoral Reform,
includes a comprehensive Q and A section.
Citizen's Assembly on Electoral Reform
http://www.cftizensassernbly.bc.ca/public
The former website of the Citizen's Assembly, which still houses the final report
and good backgrounders such as a fact sheet FAQs, and links to other countries
who use a similar voting system.
The "Vote No" Perspective
http://www^trategicthoughts.com/record2005/voteno.html
Read economist and political pundit's David Schreck's opposition to the BC-STV
system.
The "Vote Yes" Perspective
http://www.stvforbc.coin!
A text-heavy site with information on why
BC residents should support BC-STV.
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Wednesday, March 23, 2005
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Slean set
SARAH SLEAN
At Richard's on Richards
March 15
by Megan Turnbull
CULTUREWRITER
Musicianship prevailed at Richard's
on Richards last Tuesday night. All
those in attendance to see Sarah
Slean's concert theatrics were also
treated to troubadour Jeremy
Fisher's introspective folk tunes and
Jorane's poignant cello and vocal
arrangements.
I was excited to see Jeremy Fisher
on the bill as I've been anxious to see
him Hve since I learned ofhis unique
touring style. To promote his most
recent album Let It Shine, Fisher (and
his guitar) travelled across the country by bicycle on a tour he titled "One
Less Tourbus." It doesn't get any
more folk than that!
Fisher was excellent; however, it
was the ladies who stole the show
that evening as Fisher's understated
performance was quickly forgotten
the moment the exuberant Jorane
stepped onto the stage, picked up her
cello and cast a spell on the audience
with her entrancing, magical music.
Whether singing in English, French,
or using her voice as an instrument
to create wordless, but beautiful
sounds, the self-proclaimed "wild
and crazy cellist" held us captive with
each one of her haunting pieces.
Jorane was among nearly 100 bands
representing Canada at the prestigious SXSW festival in Austin Texas
last week. I was counting on her to
repair the national reputation of
French Canadian music so tragically
damaged by the likes of Celine Dion
and Roch Voisine.
Jorane was a tough act to follow,
but Slean managed to pick up right
where Jorane left off, delivering an
entertaining and highly energetic
set. Slean (red wine in hand) and
her band casually graced the stage
and quickly drowned out the audience's anxious cheering with the
cabaret rock of "Lucky Me," the first
single off her new album Day One.
The fiery musician takes the
"singer/songwriter" moniker and
blows it to pieces. Each song rocked
more than the last and at the end of
"When Another Midnight," the
show's undeniable climax, a
pumped up fan enthusiastically
exclaimed "Your drummer's fuckin'
nuts." Behind Blake Manning's
elaborate drum set, on his sweat-
soaked visage, I swear I saw a subtle
flicker of a smile, indicating that he
had accomplished his mission for
the evening.
Sarah Slean is a true performer
who appears genuinely at ease on
stage, exuding self-confidence
beyond her years. She expresses a
raw and uninhibited energy as she
ferociously attacks her keyboard or
dramatically contorts her body as
though the music is surging
through her. On Tuesday night she
held nothing back and the audience
responded with encouraging yells
and whistles as she passionately
soared through a string of powerful
songs such as "Out in the Park,"
"Day One," "Mary," "Vertigo," and
"Pilgrim," all from her latest
album. Half way through the set
Slean looked out at the audience
with a slightly demonic gaze and
said "Well now that we're all ugly
and sweaty, we can play the mean
ones for ya." This provoked more
cheering as the band launched into
"The Score" followed by crowd
favourite, "Sweet Ones," from her
previous album Night Bugs.
After the first encore, a heart-felt
rendition of "Duncan," the drummer
left the stage and the rest of the band
huddled up, making the intimate setting even cozier to close the evening.
As the gentle opening chords of
"Wake Up" drifted over the audience,
Slean looked out at us once more
with her impish, twinkling eyes and
said, "Now we're going to sing you to
sleep so that instead of taking a taxi
home you can float." And float we did,
with lingering images from a truly
unique musical experience still ringing in our ears. II
*==■..
GO GIRL! Jorane belts out an energetic set. megan turnbull photo
Someone
GEOFF GIBBONS
Sentimental Maniac
[Spark Records]
by Ritu Kumar
CULTURE STAFF
What can I say about Geoff Gibbons' latest
album Sentimental Maniac? A long-nurtured
dream? An unrequited destiny? Well, no. But
let me start off by saying that the whole thing
sounded like a run-on sentence that had
escaped from the sixties.
At first I thought that this retro, summer of
love, war is over feel could be refreshing.
Refreshing was not the word for what
Sentimental Maniac sounded like—refreshing
got old fast
In fact, at around the third song in my
roommate and I decided to conduct a listening
experiment on the album. We found that while
in middle of listening to one song, you could
switch to the middle of another song without
even realising the difference.
torture
Unlike those feel-good hippy tunes though,
Gibbons's music does not leave you feeling
happy and energetic, but quite the opposite.
Why not try out Gibbons' music as a form of
torture? It's the only thing it would be good at
accomplishing.
Apparently Geoff Gibbons has been in
bands and making music for over twenty
years, but maybe his sound got stuck in that
past somewhere. I don't know what he's trying
to do with his sound, but whatever it is, I think
he should stop. II
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::%: 14
the ubyssey magazine
PAGE FRIDAY
Wednesday, March 23,2005
■i2>l"'»
Wednesday, 23 March, 2005
Vol.LXXXVI  N°45
Editorial Board
coordinating editor Jesse Marchand
coordinating@ubyssey.bc.ca
news editors Sarah Bourdon
Dan McRoberts
news@ubyssey.bc.ca
culture editor Ania Mafi
culture@ubyssey.bc.ca
sports editor Eric Szeto
sports@ubyssey.bc.ca
features/national editor Alex Leslie
features@ubyssey.bc.ca
photo editor Nic Fensom
photos@ubyssey.bc.ca
production manager Michelle Mayne
production@ubyssey.bc.ca
Coordinators
volunteers Carrie Robinson
volunteers@ubyssey.bc.ca
research/letters Paul Evans
feedback@ubyssey.bc.ca
The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University
of British Columbia. It is published every Tuesday and Friday
by The Ubyssey Publications Society. We are an autonomous,
democratically run student organisation, and all students are
encouraged to participate.
Editorials are chosen and written by the Ubyssey staff. They
are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily
reflect the views of The Ubyssey Publications Society or the
University of British Columbia. All editorial content appearing in
The Ubyssey is the property of The Ubyssey Publications Society.
Stories, opinions, photographs and artwork contained herein
cannot be reproduced without the expressed, written permission
of The Ubyssey Publications Society.
The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University Press
(CUP) and adheres to CUP's guiding principles.
Letters to the editor must be under 300 words. Please include
your phone number, student number and signature (not for
publication) as well as your year and faculty with all submissions.
ID will be checked when submissions are dropped off at the
editorial office of The Ubyssey, otherwise verification will be done
by phone. "Perspectives" are opinion pieces over 300 words but
under 750 words and are run according to space. "Freestyles" are
opinion pieces written by Ubyssey staff members. Priority will be
given to letters and perspectives over freestyles unless the latter is
time sensitive. Opinion pieces will not be run until the identity of
the writer has been verified. The Ubyssey reserves the right to edit
submissions for length and clarity.
It is agreed by all persons placing display or classified advertising
that if the Ubyssey Publications Society fails to publish an
advertisement or if an error in the ad occurs the liability of the
UPS will not be greater than the price paid for the ad. The UPS
shall not be responsible for slight changes or typographical errors
that do not lessen the value or the impact of the ad.
EDITORIAL OFFICE
Room 24, Student Union Building
6138 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1
tel: 604-822-2301
fax: 604-822-9279
web: www.ubyssey.bc.ca
e-mail: feedback@ubyssey.bc.ca
BUSINESS OFFICE
Room 23, Student Union Building
advertising: 604-822-1654
business office: 604-822-6681
fax:604-822-1658
e-mail: advertising@ubyssey.bc.ca
business manager Fernie Pereira
ad sales Dave Gaertner
ad design Shalene Takara
Eric Szeto was watching his favorite episode of Full House when
Claudia Li called. She had big news, Jesse Marchand and Michelle
Mayne were on their way to his house, and they were outraged."Why
did you do it?" Sarah Bourdon asked him just as the doorbell rang. It
was only Dan McRoberts."Nic Fensom and Ania Mafi told me what you
did,"he said. Alex Leslie had been guarding the Storm the Wall wall last
night. Paul Evans was with her. Around midnight Carrie Robinson,
Colleen Tang and Sam Wasswa-Kintu showed up to crash the wall. So
Jesse Ferreras and Liz Green prompted them on and Jenn Cameron
bought them enough alcohol to work up the nerve. Eric was the only
one who made it to the top just as Bryce McCrae and Ritu Kumar
noticed something strange."Get off of there"yelled Sara Norman.ln the
morning Megan Turnbull told him he should have stuck to Full House
for entertainment, and Yinan Max Wang took a picture of him. Levi
Barnett and Simon Underwood just stood there laughing.
cover design Michelle Mayne
editorial graphic Simon Underwood
Canadian
University
Press
Canada Post Sales Agreement
Number 0040878022
Banish
the blues
In the crazy, busy, gloomy days of
March, with exams just around the
corner, many students may find-
themselves a little down in the
dumps.
Perhaps the insurmountable
mound of schoolwork is the culprit
and you are one of the many students standing in the pouring rain,
staring up at Koerner library and
looking for one of the illustrious
window seats. And perhaps today
they are all full, and you are wet,
tired and angry at the world. But
then again, it might have nothing to
do with school. Whatever your cause
of stress may be—you're not alone.
For some, the blues can extend
into something much deeper and
far more debilitating.
Depression comes in many
forms and its prevalence in student
life is staggering.
Antidepressant drugs are one
the most commonly-prescribed
drugs for students, indicating the
pervasiveness of the condition.
According to a US college study,
one in 12 US college students makes
a suicide plan and 1,088 suicides
occur on campuses every year.
Many people with depression
deny its presence and are reluctant
to find help for themselves. Some
feel that they should simply struggle
through it; that their problems are
not big enough to require help.
Others feel that there is nothing
available to them.
However, there is nothing to be
ashamed of in getting help from any
of the numerous resources, both on-
campus and in Vancouver that are
available.
CMHA
The   Canadian   Mental   Health
Association  has   comprehensive
information on a variety of psychiatric disorders, available at
www.cmha.ca. The site includes
a guide for college and university
students with psychiatric disabilities.
Vancouver Crisis Centre
Visit www.crisiscentre.bc.ca for
information on the Crisis
Intervention and Suicide
Prevention Centre. The Centre
operates a 24-hour non-judgmental, confidential distress line,
available in the Lower Mainland
at (604)872-3311.
The Wellness Centre
Located in the basement of the SUB,
across from Travel Cuts, the
Wellness Centre can refer DeoDle to
Cartoon was about choice not homemaking
I would first like to start by stating I
did not intend to offend anyone by
the cartoon I drew for the Ubyssey
Women's Issue [Mar. 11], and what
Tara Clarkson, in particular,
implied from this cartoon is inaccurate. I did not draw the woman on
the right to be a "homemaker" at all.
She was simply a young woman.
The letter that was published on
Tuesday, March 15 states that this
cartoon "represents] homemakers
as lazy underachievers."
This is simply not so. Women or
men who choose to stay at home to
raise children are not at all lazy and
underachievers as Tara Clarkson
implies.
I have great respect for women
who choose to raise their children
and be "homemakers.* My mother
was in fact once a part time stay-at-
home-mom herself. She chose to
work one day a week so she and my
father could raise my sisters and I in
the most excellent way possible.
My mother was most certainly
not a lazy underachiever; in fact she
even did her dissertation and
received her PhD while raising us.
Even my father was a part time
worker to help develop us as children, and just as my mother, he was
without doubt, not la2y.
I do agree however with one
thing Clarkson says; "Homemaking,
especially where there are children
involved, is hard work." Couldn't
have said it better myself—oh wait,
yes I can. Raising children while trying to keep eveiything else in order
is one of the most difficult tasks.
Saying it is simple "hard work" is an
understatement.
The cartoon I drew has two
women on the left, one a scientist,
the other a journalist and the drawing on the far right is of a woman
who is simply watching television.
The journalist says, "aren't you
going to do anything with your
life?" and the woman on the right
says, "I am. I'm wasting it." This
does not mean she is "bumming
around the house," instead of raising her children and doing as
"homemakers" do.
It isn't even a homemaker! No
homemaker I know has time to
watch TV in her or his bunny slippers like that. The cartoon is meant
to depict a woman choosing to do as
she feels and not feel obligated to
achieve.
Because we all know feminism is
about a woman's right to choose,
can't a woman choose to stay at
home one day to enjoy a day of
relaxation?
This cartoon also portrays television consuming our lives, especially
with this one caricature, who if you
please, may represent a teenager.
Television is a big part of society
today and some might even say it is
too big. In conclusion, you may read
what you will into this cartoon, but
try it wearing a comfy pair of bunny
slippers in front of the TV.
—Erin Norman
Cartoonist
a variety of resources such as family
physicians at UBC hospital and psychiatrists and counsellors at UBC.
The Wellness Centre also hosts
stress-management seminars, along
with workshops on managing academic life, the transition to university, relationship issues, safety, and
(generally) building a balanced life.
In addition, detailed information on
stress, nutrition, sexual health and
substance use is available to students through the Centre.
AMS Speakeasy
The Speakeasy provides information, peer counseling and crisis support to the UBC community. They
are a great, confidential service,
offering referrals to on-and off-campus services. In addition, their website provides a number of links to
various health and mental health
resources.
Student Health Services
Located on the main floor of the
University Hospital, this service is
available to all students. To book an
appointment, call 822-7011.
Physicians at the clinic offer psychiatric services.
G
ounseinng services
UBC's official counseling office is
located in Brock Hall, providing one-
on-one, group and career counseling. The service offers drop-in sessions. The AMS Insider notes that
during the school year wait times
for individual sessions can be a couple of weeks, especially in
late October and February
(midterm/paper season). II
comm
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Break out the pastel
coloured pantsuit and
contact your satellite
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-Aprihst Wednesday, March 23,2005 BflgMib^mit'iLii^ £IlE^J^^WiWW^^WHW^^^^aBa^^SBMB»^t^g^aga j 1% fij 3 a[   |^J
Waiting in this room is great
7W£ WAITING ROOM
Presented by Studio 58 and Ruby Slippers Theatre
at Langara College
until April 3
by Jesse Ferreras
CULTURE STAFF
The preoccupation with beauty and efforts to preserve and
enhance it is an issue that heavily affects women in contemporary society. This theme forms the arc of "The Waiting
Room,' from Girl Interrupted co-writer Lisa Loomer, whose
play has been produced by Langara College's Studio 58.
At the outset of the play we meet two 18th-century
women from very distinct cultures as they sit anxiously in
the titular waiting room at a hospital: one is Forgiveness
From Heaven (Donna Soares), the fifth wife of a Chinese
aristocrat who is waiting to have an operation on her foot,
caused by the binding of her feet in traditional shoes. She
speaks with Victoria (Evangela Dueck), a Victorian who has
been informed by her husband that her "hysteria," manifested in a nervous kick, is the problem of her ovaries and
not, as she says, the binding contraption that is the corset.
The two envoys from previous generations of beantification
practices are joined soon after by Wanda Kazynski (guest
artist Beatrice Zeilinger), who is currently waiting on her
sixth breast implant operation. Her operation is one of the
show's standout sequences, as it is performed in a hilarious
silhouette a la Austin Powers 2.
Their physician is the hapless Dr Douglas McCaskell
(guest artist Scott Bellis, in the production's standout performance), who barely has a grip on himself, let alone his
patients. Dr McCaskell works stressful days at the hospital
and spends his leisure time on the Hnks and at the sauna
with friends Larry (Josue Laboucane) and bis FDA lackey
Ken (Nikolas Longstaff)- Their scenes are among the show's
most entertaining, especially one in which they are playing
golf against a projected backdrop—the actors playfully interact with projections as they fly across the screen. But over
the course of the production Dr McCaskell gradually loses
control over his surroundings as he becomes fearful at the
prospect of having a tumour after discovering one in his
patient.
Loomer successfully draws her audience into an entertaining play that, despite equal doses of drama and comedy,
succeeds at effectively translating a controversial issue
through a theatrical aesthetic. Studio 58 works wonders
with an already-effective play, extracting hilariously convincing performances out of Bellis and Zeilinger especially.
Loomer, combined with the efforts of Studio 58, draw the
audience in with its humour and leave the audience with an
affecting, although uplifting impression that resonates with
its viewers long after the curtain falls. Studio 58 has constructed a theatrical beauty with "The Waiting Room." 51  -J!''
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Jenn Cameron
"Everything is going to be okay, BasiL'
sponsors
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Marguerite Pigeon: Snap Fiction
Marguerite Pigeon graduated in 2004
from the MFA program in Creative
Writing at UBC. Her stories and poems
have been published across Canada and
internationally. She was recently shortlisted for the 2004 CBC Literary Awards
for fiction. Currently, she is writing her
first novel.
William H. New: Poetry
William H. New has taught English at
UBC for many years. He has published
six books of poetry (the most recent being
'Underwood Log,' 2004) and three books
of verse for children, including 'Dream
Helmet' (2005).
Melissa Edwards: Long Non-Fiction
Melissa Edwards is an associate editor at
Geist magazine and the managing editor
of the annual International 3-Day Novel
Contest. She lives in Vancouver.
Melva McLean: Long Fiction
Melva (Mel) McLean has been a publishing professional for almost 20 years. She
is the former managing editor of a scholarly journal and small literary book publisher. Currently, she divides her time
among administrative work, freelance
editing, and teaching publishing courses
through the Vancouver School Board.
Vancouver Public Library
UBC Press
New Star Books
■.**».*     ■W'('v#N>r
writer biographies
Arlene Kroeker (Bless This
House): Winner Long Non-
Fiction
Arlene Kroeker is a
first-year MFA candidate
in creative writing. Her
two teenage daughters
are a source of constant
writing material, but she
also writes about food
every Thursday for the Richmond Review. She is currently negotiating a deal on her house and has her
fingers crossed.
Mark Leung (Vancouver):
Second Runner Up Poetry
Highs: rides a scooter,
eats cereal for dinner,
and has a radio show on
101.9 fM CiTR. Lows: has
a crush on Kahlen from
America's Next Top
Model, eats cereal for dinner and lacks any significant muscular strength. Indeterminables: is slightly
colour blind, is severely addicted to sugar (which
explains the cereal habit) and still thinks Batman is
pretty cool.
Emily Walker (3000):
Runner Up Poetry
Emily Walker is from
Portland, Oregon and is a
first-year student in the
Faculty of Arts. She is a
prospective double major
in English Literature and
Creative Writing. This is
her first published work
in Canada. She'd like to spend her days becoming the
next Chuck Palahniuk and her nights running her
own radio show.
Kevin Freedman (Fallen
From Grace): Winner
Poetry
Kevin Freedman was
born and raised in
Vancouver. He was a second place winner in the
Canadian National Poetry
Institute's contest in
1999 and is looking
toward majoring in Philosophy. Kevin began writing
poetry in grade six, but improved greatly throughout
high school at Lord Byng Secondary. He carries a
poetry book around constantly and writes on a daily
basis. Kevin would like to thank www.poetry.tetto.org
members, particularly Dandy, Wendy, and other
members for his success.
Victoria Rivadeneyra (The
Pits): Runner Up Long Non-
Fiction
Victoria Rivadeneyra is a
third-year English Honours
student from Mexico City.
She is hoping to become a
children's literature writer
and publisher and is an
intern at Tradewind Books
in Granville Island where she's learning the ropes.
Lindsie Nicholas  (Vixen):
Winner Snap Fiction
Lindsie Nicholas writes
stories when she should be
memorising concepts of art
history. Vancouver is the
fourth place she's lived
since birth.
Marisa Chandler
(Closure?): Runner Up
Snap Fiction
Marisa is a third-year
English student. In her
spare time she enjoys long
walks on the beach, kicking
puppies, and taunting small
children.
Becky Ferreira (Non-
Descript Vibrations):
Winner Long Fiction
Becky Ferreira struggles
daily with the paradox of
being charming, talented
and sensationally intelligent while still wishing to
feign modesty.
Kentaro Ide (The Writer):
Runner Up Long Fiction
Kentaro was born in
Banff and lived in
Bangladesh, Singapore,
Indonesia and Japan before
finally moving back to
Canada for university. "The
Writer* is his first story in
two years, during which
time he worked on and finished his first album. You can
check out his homepage at www.kreativity.spyw.com. ^Wv
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THE UBYSSEY
LrrERARy supplement
fall
en from grace
by Kevin Freedman
"You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking
to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace."
—Galatians 5:4
if you fall, it doesn't mean
that what was above was any better,
you need not spread false hope
like you extend your mechanical wings.
there's no sense in climbing back up,
cutting your hands on Mount Olympus,
to be struck by Zeus' lightning;
you were better off staying on the ground
if you fell in flame and silent fury
then have the sense to put your candle out,
before standing in the middle of traffic,
at rush hour on a Saturday sunset.
and if your charred remains,
black and brittle like broken bottle crosses1,
shriek for forgiveness six years after Hiroshima,
then build a shrine in a bamboo grove:
each morning, jump off the roof,
until your bones shatter under the weight
of centuries of crimes- you've secretly committed,
and meditate an hour for every new bamboo shoot.
fold a thousand paper cranes- and hang them
above my hospital bedroom,
and soon you will flicker out
like frost against a window pane
in the dead of the winter solstice.
1 In Japan, crosses represent the devil.
3000
fi£
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I/I
by Emily Walker
A number, plain and simple.
That's all it is.
o
But your number is smaller than mine.
I'm judged strictly on this number.
3000.
I'm less than human in your eyes.
You want to walk me on a leash through the park.
3000.
Every phrase ignored, not questioned.
My feelings are not valid thanks to,
3000.
If I snap at you, it's because of that number.
Mass and demeanour go hand in hand.
I'm dissolving, drunk, departing again.
The masses gather. There's an exam tomorrow.
Heaven forbid. Gravity could just float away.
I'm a reluctant soldier. I've been drafted into this life.
I'm a scientific equation. I'm a digestive machine.
Emotions suppressed, I stand at attention.
V
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by Mark Leung
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The Pits
by Victoria Rivadeneyra
LONG NON FiCTiON RUNNER UP
never liked participating in class, especially in the afternoon.
Some attributed it to my being shy, but those who knew me couldn't believe that was the case. It wasn't because I didn't know what
was going on in class either; my grades were just fine. The truth is,
and believe me, I don't like telling people about it...I simply did not
like raising my hand, or more specifically my arm.
My doom began in second grade; I came back home from school and
after dinner my dad, of all people, handed me a litde box; I opened it
and inside was the first of MANY deodorants I would try in the course of
my life. It was a purple lilac scented roll-on. I was embarrassed to say
the least. So began the awful battle between my armpits and me. We had
a full-blown war going for the next seven years.
My school uniform at the time consisted of a white flimsy blouse
under a plaid tunic, green knee socks and black loafers. And let's not forget the green cardigan that both contributed to the problem and sometimes saved me from the humiliation. Picture if you will a skinny girl
wearing this uniform with sweat stains in her pits that feel incredibly
cold to the skin but more importantly are visibly huge. They can be seen
from miles away, or at least so she thinks. So now you understand why
the afternoon was worse for me. Lunchtime in Mexico City is not what
you would call chilly, so no matter how little I exerted myself sweat just
poured from my armpits. Sometimes I could even feel the drops fall on
my waist, soaking my blouse and making me wretched. My solution was
to keep my cardigan on.
But oh, that wasn't the end of it because on Tuesdays and Thursdays
we had gym class. If simply standing in place made my pits damp imagine what exercise caused! Picture two fully opened faucets under the
arms of the mortified now third-grader expected to spike a volleyball.
I'm sure I need not describe the horror I developed of basketball, volleyball, dodgeball and any other sport that demands the player to raise
her arms above her head.
The problem for me wasn't merely aesthetic. It really had an effect
on my confidence and every other aspect of my life. Sixth-grade parties
were hell for me. Not only were boys involved, but dancing made me
extremely nervous at the time (I have learned to love it since). I would
arrive looking my best with some t-shirt and a jacket and as soon as the
door would open my pits absorbed my mind, and my t-shirt then
absorbed the increase in sweat caused by this nervousness. Thus would
begin the vicious cycle of sweat, causing nervousness, causing more
sweat, causing me to keep my jacket on, being extremely hot and avoiding any physical exertion, in short, making me miserable.
My wardrobe all this time was bought with careful contemplation of
the power my pits had. I couldn't wear grey, pastels or any light colours.
I was limited to certain fabrics in white and black or dark blue. This kept
me from looking "pretty in pink" like the other girls, which for a girl in
that time of life is crucial.
By the seventh grade my patience reached its end and more serious
warfare began. I went through a period of my life where adds for
antiperspirants consumed my every thought. My mom and I would tear
through magazines and keep cut outs in a little box. Our holiday trips to
the US were precious because Walgreens represented a haven for me
with its aisles full of possible cures for my suffering. Disappointment
after disappointment followed. The new-fangled deodorants would work
for a day or two, just enough to raise my hopes, and then dash them to
the ground when my armpits would up their game and counterattack
with even more sweat.
Since chemical warfare wasn't working I had to come up with other
measures. My favourite was the panty liner episode of '97. I thought it
was a wonderful idea to stick panty liners to the inside of my shirts to
absorb the sweat during gym class. I thought I had found the solution. I
was proud of myself and running around the basketball court when I
realized that not only did I manage to sweat around them, (leaving a dry
spot where the liner was situated surrounded by dark wet stains around
it) but while I was running around the liner finally gave up its hold and
slipped down my shirt landing on the gym floor behind me. Fret not!
Even though I certainly did, I managed to snatch it before anyone
could see the drenched mess. Rolls of toilet paper held tightly by keeping my arms glued to my sides was my most successful solution for the
years to follow. They were very convenient because I could change them
constantly anywhere I went. Sure, it limited my movements, but then
again so did the consciousness of having stains under my arms.
I finally found the answer a couple of years later. By then I had pretty much given up hope of ever raising my arms in public. It was while I
was in tenth grade at the hair salon with my mom that while flipping
through an old Spanish magazine we saw the advertisement for a very
powerful antiperspirant. I was skeptical, but my mom called my grandma in Madrid and two months later the tiny roll-on was in my possession. I followed the directions to the letter and by the third week of constant use I raised my arms in victory.
My life changed forever after that. I can honestly say eveiything
changed. I became more confident, participated more everywhere,
dressed however I wanted and was so happy that I decided to spread the
joy. I started with my then boyfriend who if for nothing else will certainly love me forever due to that. Turns out my problem is way more
common for hairy guys. I moved on to my guy friends and their friends
and so began my campaign to liberate others from the clammy grip of
armpits all over the world. It wasn't easy, but the sweaty dictators were
overcome and now I am continuing my advances against unwanted hair.
I expect the continuance of battles, but I am sure some day I will win
that war too. •>
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LONG NON-FICTiON WINNER
THE UBYSSEY
LITERARY SUPPLEMENT
k      A
I\ § 1     y house  celebrates  its  one-hundredth
I   \ x    1     birthday this year.  Originally a farm-
i      \    /      \    house surrounded by the rich soil of
I \/ I   Terra Nova on the flatlands of Lulu
I Y t   Island, this three-storied house gazes
over the dyke at the Fraser River and the North Shore
mountains.
I love my house. I first stood on the veranda eight years ago.
"This is my house/ I said to my realtor with a grin. I had not
yet viewed inside, but I instinctively knew that this was where
my two daughters and I would start our post-divorce life. The
night before I set out with the realtor in quest of a home, I had
dreamt that the house I bought had a claw-foot bathtub, and
sure enough, there it was, six feet long, white, begging for new
hardware, but otherwise ready for a long hot soak.
I saw beyond the worn out kitchen and bathrooms,
beyond the scruffy carpet and fading paint. I envisioned the
masterpiece it is today, a melody of muted green and soft
yellow walls, azure tiled countertops, sage green wool carpets, and restored antique light fixtures. I sa}' that I envisioned the look and stvle, but it was the house that inhaled
me, guided roe, and said, "Make me a home again and I will
give you sanctuary."
I have lived in many houses. My parents were builders, and
we moved every year or two. Then I married a builder, managed our construction/design company, and we too moved
every year. "How could you leave that house?" friends would
ask. "Easy," I'd answer. "It's just a piece of wood." I've always
lived in new houses. I've hammered the first nail to hang a picture. I've cooked the first meal. I've wiped away the first dust.
But this is the first old house I've lived in. This house is different. This house has an established soul. This house seems to be
designed for intimacy, a contrast from the stark coldness of
contemporary tract "mansions." As Jerome K. Jerome, an
English writer, said, "I wanted a house that has got over all its
troubles; I don't want to spend the rest of my life bringing up a
young and inexperienced house." I wanted to be just one in a
series of inhabitants who shared a place where their hves
unfolded, for better or for worse.
Having been neglected and unloved for a number of years,
my house needed an overhaul. The renovation took only eight
weeks to complete, a relatively short time for the amount of
work involved. Everything flowed effortlessly. The tradesmen
were available, even though the work fell over the Christmas
holidays; the materials were all in stock, and there were none
of the hidden surprises that renovations can unearth. When we
moved in on a sunny, cold day in February, my eldest daughter sat cross-legged in the middle of her bed in her freshly
painted and carpeted room and grinned, "I'm home."
All three of us felt like that. We felt safe. We no longer listened for the garage door to open, holding our breath, waiting
to see what kind of mood my husband, my kids' father, would
be in. Here, in my bastion, I could complete divorce proceedings and the complicated undoing of a lifetime together with
another person.
For houses are more than floors and ceilings, walls and
doors, brick and glass. Houses protect us from the elements,
provide a place to store our earthly "stuff", offer a place to
sleep and dream and eat and love and argue and create and
grow. Along with our chest of drawers and kitchen table, we
share our home with our hopes, successes and failures, joys
and sorrows, our taste in colour, space, fabrics and furnishings, and a whole lot of invisible spirit and energy. Might we
not be sharing our homes with the spirit and energy of past
hves and possibly the spirit and energy from generations past
in our family's heritage? The psychologist Jung said we internalise "the whisper" of our parents', grandparents' and great
-grandparents' experiences. And who is to say that when the
prior tenants moved out, they didn't leave some of their spirit and energy behind? Houses are more than just trees. They
hold, like fingerprints, a bit of everyone who has passed
through their doors.
People often claim that they "fell in love" with their house at
first sight. It's as if we marry our houses and then transform
them into homes. We make mortgage commitments that are
intended to last longer than most marriages, but it's a rare phenomenon today for a family home to remain in the family for
more than a generation. Too often the family sells the home to
developers who bulldoze it down to make way for a larger
home or mountains of condominiums. Such obsolete family
homes die an early death, though sometimes, bits and pieces
are salvaged, recycled, and transplanted into new or renovated
homes. This is not unlike the way inhabitants transplant themselves to new locales, taking a piece or two, perhaps an
Echinacea plant or clump of irises, to root themselves again.
To put these plants in the ground knowing they'll bloom faithfully every summer is a form of ritual, a blessing given to celebrate a new address, a way of saying this house will be more
than just shelter.
Most cultures and religions around the world bless their
houses through rituals. Blessings by priests, rabbis, and other
religious leaders have always been popular, but lately some
homeowners have created a patchwork of secular rituals. In
the same way couples personalise their wedding vows, homeowners personalise house blessings. They may borrow from
religious symbolism, elements of Chinese feng shui, or traditional housewarming customs to create a special baptism for a
new dwelling. Many customs spring directly from the literal
meaning of housewarming. Ann Wall Frank, an authority on
house blessing rituals, says that in prehistoric times, when the
eldest son left his family, he took a piece of the ancestral fire
with him to keep the family spirit alive. Several house-blessing
traditions involve a ceremony around the first fire in a hearth,
keystone tiles installed around a hearth, or special woods or
herbs added to a fire.
When Jews move to a new house, they attach a mezuzah, a
small holder for a parchment scroll carrying two quotes from
Deuteronomy, outside the front door on the top right door
frame. This is not a good-luck charm, but a reminder to those
entering of the presence of the Lord.
Other rituals passed down for centuries do revolve around
lucky charms. Horseshoes over the door were originally used
to repel witches (who were thought to be afraid of horses).
Ritual cleaning, aromatherapy, a celebratory meal, burning
sage or cedar - these are not New Age practices. They've been
around for centuries. They speak to our need to make our houses sacred places. Symbolic gifts of dried corn or bread act as a
wish for abundance, coins for prosperity, candles for a fresh
start, and small bags of sugar placed in kitchen cupboards for
sweetness of life.
Home-warming ceremonies often take place in conjunction
with tacking up house numbers or installing a new mailbox.
The previous owners of my house called it "The Blue Heron." I
christened it "Heritage House" and burned incense after I set
an old corrugated metal mailbox on the ledge at the foot of the
front stairs. Over the front door I nailed a tiny silver milagro of
the female torso—the Mexican symbol for good health. These
small rituals were a welcome antidote to the upheaval of moving and they aided in a return to an orderly existence. They
brought a sense of completion to the move, imparting a sense
of clearing out the old and making a place for the new. They
bonded me to my new surroundings.
I nurtured my relationship with the house when I bought a
dog, fenced the yard, and hung an old red metal gate found in
an urban antique store. I continually cleaned the windows of
sea spray and cleared the gutters. I planted tulips, daffodils,
snowdrops, wisteria, honeysuckle, climbing roses and winter
jasmine. I planned the garden to give year-round colour and
bloom. I worked the soil, fertilised, watered, and found a rusty
rouge pot, an old coin, a key without a lock, marbles, and a red
truck dinky toy. The earth pushed upwards, delivering
reminders of past hves lived right here on this land. Don't
Forget Us, they seemed to say.
This house has touched many of the people who lived here.
I know that because some of them have knocked on the door.
"I used to hve here and was wondering if I could take a look,
show the wife and kids." I never say no. I invite them in, show
them around and listen as their memories return. "The basement was a dirt floor where we stored potatoes and apples."
They'd point out the window, "That's Swishwash Island, we'd
swim there." I learned about how it was once safe to swim in
the river, how eagles once nested in the tree in my front yard
and how someone slipped in the bathtub and drowned. But
even before the house was built and inhabited, the land was
used as a summer camp by the Musqueam Indians, "protectors of the river," who fished at the mouth of the river for thousands of years. Then, in 1868, the land where my house now
sits was one of the first two parcels of land sold on the island.
Corporal William McColl, a Royal Engineer surveyor whose job
also included maintaining law and order in the area, purchased it for ten shillings an acre. Slowly, over the years, the
rich fertile soil became the ground for a multitude of houses,
so that today my house no longer stands alone.
When friends and guests visit, I think they must feel the
essence of those who lived on the land so many years ago as
they often comment on how they feel hugged by the house as
they walk through the door. Those experiencing a crisis—troubled marriage or a job loss—climb onto a stool at the island in
the kitchen and burst into tears. I listen and serve tea with
honey. They take their leave rejuvenated, but puzzled as to
why, in this particular house, they feel safe enough to be vulnerable.
The house understands vulnerable. Like my daughters and
I, when we moved in, it too was worn down. Together, we
helped protect and heal each other. We got stronger. We were
able to open to others, let them in and continue to nurture. I
thought I would never move. This was the house to which my
children would bring their children. So I lovingly cared for it,
repaired it, kept the yard lush and colourful. I stayed home,
worked from home, fed and hugged my daughters, nursed my
soul on the veranda, watched seals play in the river, eagles dive
for their dinner, float planes churn the water. This house was
a relationship, like a safe friend, a place of refuge while life
sorted itself out.
But now I'm ready to move on. My mind, body, and soul are
restored and want to continue their journey. My wanderlust
has returned. I'm no longer content to stay in one home indefinitely. I want to explore other parts of the city, maybe the country. Now that one daughter is away at college, the house seems
too big. The size, lots of room to find cozy corners to curl up in,
was what I loved when I bought the house. The yard as well,
expansive grass bordered by trees and bushes, was a. selling
point for me. But now I've come to dislike the size of the house
and the yard. Keeping up with the cleaning, trimming the lau
rel bushes, topping the cedar hedge, clearing winter debris,
pulling away the ivy from under the roof is hard work. Work
that once was therapeutic—scrubbing sinks, washing floors
and walls, raking fallen cherries and autumn leaves—I just
don't want to do anymore. Isn't that the way with relationships? What first attracted us later repels us.
A friend accuses me of not being sentimental. She's
bought a condominium and will be moving in a few months
but she already mourns the loss of her rental apartment. Just
the thought of leaving her hving space causes her lower lip to
tremble. I may not be sentimental when it comes to a construct of 2x4s and brick, but I have saved my daughters'
favourite toys and outfits, and I compiled a scrapbook of their
artwork. Perhaps it is ingrained in my genes—this lack of
rootedness, this ease of moving on, not attaching to houses.
My ancestors, for hundreds of years, have moved between
continents, countries, provinces, cities and streets. They took
the essence of "home" with them. They knew that home lay in
the heart. They knew about sticks and stones and big bad
wolves. They knew how to find protection when needed and
how to move on when ready.
And so I have decided to sell my beloved house, but like
some human relationships, when one person is ready much
earlier for the separation than the other, and usually long
before the other has any idea something is wrong, my house
appears not to be ready for the change. The pounding of the
For Sale sign into the front lawn surprised my house. And even
though the sign was securely installed, the land rejected it,
pushed until it tilted at a forty-five degree angle. Do Not Leave.
I listed with my realtor nine months ago. The day I fisted the
house, three pipes burst—in the guest bathroom, dining room,
and furnace room. Was the house crying? Since then, the concrete driveway has buckled and divided, separating the house
from the road. Do Not Enter; Do Not Leave, the house seems to
be saying. The perimeter drains clogged and with a heavy rainfall and a high tide, the house was surrounded by a moat. Do
Not Enter. Do Not Leave. The oven, the heart of the home, no
longer heats up. A broken heart? Three lamps fell over, the
glass shades shattered. Four other light fixtures refused to
work, even when I replaced the bulbs. The electrical wires, like
veins, twisting and turning unseen behind the walls, short circuit in despair. Do Not Leave. The hot water tank started leaking, drip-by-drip, life slowly draining away. The fridge's cooling
system failed. Am I getting the cold shoulder?
My realtor receives more calls on my house than any fisting
she's ever had. Potential buyers stay in the house for hours;
they wander from room to room, run their hands over the banister, sit in the window seats and stare out the window. They
ask the realtor why I'm selling such a beautiful home and she
tells them that I'm downsizing. My house though, is uncooperative and seems unwilling to let me go. How else can I explain
why it hasn't sold? The price is right, so is the location, and so
are the original pine floors and the claw-foot bathtub with its
new brushed chrome fittings. With everyone loving the house,
with people knocking on the door to enquire about it, but with
no sale yet, I can only assume that the house is somehow spit
ting these potential owners back onto the street, shooing them
away. Not worthy replacements? Not suitable? Nothing to offer
an old house?
I don't know how to detach from the bond I established with
the house. I don't know how to divorce my house. The roots of
the house have withstood the past one hundred years. They
hold fast. The walls whisper like a lover, seducing, coaxing, Do
Not Leave. This house is not about to let me go without a fight.
I do not know any counter-rituals to release me from the commitment I originally made. Jonathan Swift wrote about a man
who, when he had a mind to sell his house, carried one of its
bricks in his pocket. He would use it to entice potential buyers.
I've even heard ofa couple who consulted a psychic when their
house wouldn't sell. She told them to buy a new salad bowl,
make a salad, and offer it to the house. Apparency, their house
accepted that simple act and released them. It sold within days,
and the couple moved on. A realtor friend phoned to offer me
feng shui sales advice. "Take a utensil from the kitchen, put it
an envelope and throw it in the river." A salad bowl? A brick?
A fork or knife?
Do I really want to sell the house? Am I totally healed?
Perhaps I am sending out confusing messages, wanting to sell
the house, but not acknowledging the sadness about leaving it
Possibly I haven't put the house up for sale in my heart How
do my children really feel about selling the house? Even though
they get excited when the realtor calls and say, "I hope she has
an offer." Have I just tried to convince them that they will be
happy after the move? Maybe sad energy hangs around, sulking and pouting, paralysing the energy needed to transfer the
house to somebody else. Maybe I hoard old hurts, humiliation,
failures, losses, and pains. Do these fill up not only my life, but
also my house? The only reason I see for not really wanting to
move is the thought of the work involved—sorting, packing, distributing, garage sales, the dump, moving, boxes, boxes, boxes.
Other than that, I look forward to parting with dozens of shoes,
hundreds of old magazines and greeting cards.
Thinking that a good sage smudging might release any
stuck energy, I made an appointment with the psychic I'd
heard about. I asked her, "Why won't my house sell?*
She didn't hesitate. "Your house has been your protection,
a place to be safe, but it's not ready to release you." She tells me
that the house has never been acknowledged for its power.
"You have to write about it. When you share the story of the
land and house, then the house will let you go. Until then, take
down the For Sale sign. Honour the house through ceremony
and don't forget to take the energy of the house with you when
you leave. And," she added, "paint your bedroom."
When I^got home from the reading, I lit candles in the bathroom, filled the tub with hot water and poured in some lavender salts. I said out loud, "I am ready to leave this house where
my body, spirit, and energy have lived and to move on my path
to the next stage of health, prosperity, serenity, and growth.
Thank you house for the protection and happy memories provided." I stepped into the tub, submerged my body, and
exhaled. Later, dried and cleansed, I picked up a pen and
began to write about the house I love. •*
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THE UBYSSEY
LITERARY SUPPLEMENT
1   arbie Crosby. 8th grade. Bottom half:
mn^f   wide feet, puggish toes. Bowling shoes,
^^  thus never a perfect fit. Shins are lean.
\ Thighs are not. Peg leg effect results.
■u^ Semi-solved by shorts that cut off below
the knee. Upper thighs have larger curve than butt.
Jello-ey jiggle effect in lower to mid-section results.
In every single step taken.
Upper half: breasts aren't catching up to belly
anytime soon. Like two plums hanging overtop ofa
partially exposed nerf ball (Double-plum nerf ball
effect?). Biceps short and fleshy, forearms long and
bony. Puffed sleeves effect results. Knuckly knuckles, short fingers, jagged fingernails.
Face: Heavy brows perpetually debating over
whether to rendezvous at the top of the nose to
claim unibrow status. Michelangelo's "Creation of
Adam* effect. Left side of face swamped with
moles, great and small. Right side, lightly dotted.
Lucked out on the pimple factor. Gets them rarely,
and usually under the curve of nostrils. Well hidden. Eyes are hazel, hair is brown. Ears waxy, hps
chapped. Eats a slice of the mysterious
'Everything" pizza from the school cafeteria every
lunch hour. "Everything* toppings wedged into
glow-in-the-dark braces until the nightly floss.
Jeff Tannen. 35 years old. Six foot six. Has been
since Junior High. Gnawing self-consciousness
resulted in permanent tendency to slouch shoulders, along with a habit of mixing drugs like jellybean flavours. Sasquatch feet fused to pool-noodle
legs. Head disproportionately large. Jack
Skellington effect. Extreme balance problems.
Trips over own feet, overestimates gravitational
implications of forward slouches. Toppling thus
frequent. Overgrown toddler effect. Greasy brackish hair hangs limp off of skull, all the way down to
shoulders. A la wilted Chia Pet. Upside-down triangle goatee, accompanied by traces of hair on upper
Up that could be mistaken for a chocolate milk
moustache. Thick-lens glasses. Magnified blinks.
Blink. Blink.
Mr Gary's Guitar Shack. 1143 Windsor Rd. Back
alley actually, but they share an old lady's mailbox
on Windsor Rd. Decrepit, old guitar store. Smells
like a mixture of unwashed carpet, "that smell that
you just can't place,* and man-sweat, laced with the
sweet fragrance of recently played Zeppelin hanging in the air. Owned by Mr Gary, known by close
friends as just Gary, who (legend has it) forgot his
own surname during an ether trip.
Barbie Crosby. 8th grade. Dumpy, plain and a
victim of much social mockery. Has a few friends,
none of whom she particularly likes. They are also
girls in puberty's bad books, who frequently muse
over the prophetic truth of the ugly duckling story.
But did Hans Christian Andersen ever bloom into a
swan? No, he was born misshapen and died that
way too. That's the fucking difference, Barbie
thinks.
Jeff Tannen. 35. Don't ask him what he's been
up to since high school, because he doesn't know.
He managed to learn guitar somewhere along the
way, which was enough of a qualification for Mr
Gary to hire him. But there's a full 4 year blank in
his early 20s, and another 2 year one around 30.
The memories he does have are shuffled around in
his brain like Uno cards to the extent that events
that occurred when he was 18, he remembers
occurring at 26. Events at 30, he remembers as 21.
Yesterday as birth. So if you ever find yourself
interested in what he's been up to for the past two
decades, he should not be your primary source.
Also, watch out for his acid flashbacks. Many
involve experimentation with "scream-styling.*
Barbie's school is a block away from Mr Gary's,
but she's never been there. Sometimes kids go to
the fast food places near it, but the cafs
"Eveiything" pizza has never given Barbie reason
to complain. Her friends are also creatures of
habit, and always settle with the cafs poutine, double burger and fries deals or just straight up donuts
for lunch. Fate intervened one day when tbe caf
ran out of the large, unsealed sacks of "Assorted
'Everything' toppings." Barbie stared at the
masking tape label superimposed overtop of the
permanent "Everything" label. "Cheese Please!
Pizza," it read. What in the fucking dick is this
shit? thought Barbie.
When Barbie passed by Mr Gary's looking for a
suitable edible substitute, Jeff was in the store's loft
deciding via a solo game of rock, paper, scissors
whether he was going to nap on his stomach or his
side, the Tjack' option having been disqualified in
the preliminaries. When Barbie decided to enter
the store, Jeff was debating via a solo game of drawing straws if he even needed a nap at all. When
Barbie heard someone talking to himself in the loft,
Jeff was talking to himself in the loft. When Barbie
walked in on Jeff undressing, Jeff was undressing.
Ta da! The characters have met. This guy is
gross, thought Barbie. This zipper always gives me
sass, thought Jeff. •*
This guy is gross and weird,
thought Barbie, as Jeff
pulled down his captain
Planet underpants.
There they were, in an awkward situation,
made all the worse by Jeff's decision to not stop
undressing.
This guy is gross and weird, thought Barbie, as
Jeff pulled down his Captain Planet underpants.
I should go now I guess, thought Barbie, as he
rummaged in a large chest in the corner of the loft,
eventually pulling out a ninja turtle costume.
Raphael, if Barbie wasn't mistaken.
Ok, I'm leaving right now, thought Barbie. But
Barbie didn't leave. She was pretty fascinated.
When Jeff had adorned himself appropriately,
he smiled big and offered his hand for Barbie to
shake, explaining that the costume eased his tensions about socialising with other people. She tried
to smooth over her own discomfort, which he
showed no signs of sharing, by explaining that she
came to the shop to sign up for guitar lessons.
Came to the right place, said Raphael's voice in
Jeff's head, and he proudly pulled out his wallet
and showed her the back of an ATM receipt that
almost indecipherably read "Jeff Tannen teaches
GUITAR!" in squiggly pen. This guy's shit is fucked
up, thought Barbie, and her attraction to him, for
whatever reason, grew like mould. She asked him
if, as long as it wasn't too much trouble, he could
teach her how to play "Good Vibrations." Great, one
of my favorite tunes, thought Jeff and enthusiastically began an elaborate version of "Good King
Wenceslas." Barbie didn't correct him.
She skipped her afternoon classes, reveling in
the notion that she actually had something to skip
them for. When she came home for dinner, she
wished she had just stayed all night. Fucking disgusting burnt eggplant with beef jerky garnished in
Ranch dressing—Mom, why can't you fucking
cook? thought Barbie. Even so, when she went to
bed that night "Good King Wenceslas* was meandering in her head and she felt tremors of good
vibrations warding off some of her post-supper
indigestion.
Barbie's lunch hour visits and afternoon skipping with her new friend swiftly restructured her
daily routine. She was perplexed by his casual
acceptance of his past being as unwritten as his
future. When he tried to tug anything out of his
memory, his magnified pupils would stare at the
upper-frame ofhis glasses and he'd chew on whatever lock of hair was closest. But it was like trying
to Google something with the Internet cable
unplugged. Except instead of the "This page cannot
be found" warning, Jeff would just shrug and begin
fiddling with the numerous loose strings in his
clothing. Two weeks into their friendship, he managed to deduce that he hadn't always known
Barbie. Do you remember when we met? he asked.
Years ago, she replied.
Because of her haste to meet Jeff at lunchtime,
Barbie got sick of waiting in the cafeteria line and
so abandoned her old friend, the "Everything"
pizza. Within a month, the Jello-ey jiggle effect
around her mid-section was lost, along with several pounds that tragically perished due to depleted
pizza rations. She also had a small growth spurt,
and her biceps and thighs began to catch up to her
forearms and shins in length. Although she kept a
fair amount of keepsake fat on her belly, her
breasts began to outgrow her stomach. After noticing these favourable changes in the bathroom mirror one night, she spent a frantic hour ripping out
her eyebrow hairs in attempt to make her face
match her marginally more attractive body. The
result: she wasn't Anderson's swan, but she at least
looked fuckable, if not actually cute. It was more
than she had ever hoped for, and it sparked a new,
fantastic idea in her head. I could legitimately
make a move, thought Barbie. I could cuddle up
close, thought Barbie. I could be sexually aggressive, thought Barbie. I could be relieved of the burden of my innocence in the loft of a dingy guitar
shop to the aging, confused guy of my dreams in
the last months of 8th grade, thought Barbie. Just
like she'd always imagined.
But Barbie's visit to Mr Gary's the next day
proved to be considerably less fun than she'd
hoped, because Jeff was gone. Poofl When she questioned Mr Gary about his absence, he said:
Dammit, I can't remember every damn thing. He
then offered her his job, which she took as a bad
omen. She visited again the next day. And the next.
And of course many days after that. But Jeff was
plain and simply gone. She imagined him being
abducted by aliens, and debated over whether or
not he was actually one of them. She imagined him
experimenting with black magic and accidentally
dematerialising himself in a burst of photons. She
imagined him discovering an umbrella in his costume box, and upon popping it open, simply flying
out the window to a new land. Because he couldn't
She imagined him experimenting WITH BLACK MAGIC AND
ACCIDENTALLY DEMATERIALISING HIMSELF IN A BURST OF
PHOTONS.
have fucking just left, she thought She thought that
for a long time. Until it became clear that he had.
And so, it was back to the "Everything" pizza
and the ugly duckling friends. She reclaimed the
Jello-ey jiggle effect and her eyebrows grew in
thicker than before. So it went. If this were a
movie, there would now be a montage of shots
depicting clock-hands whirring round and calendar pages flipping in the wind, indicating a
jump in time. Years pass with little change.
Barbie goes on. Jeff goes on. And then one day
they see each other again.
It happened as she and her friends, adorned in
Winners dresses, approached the large inner-city
hotel that was to house their high school graduation. She noticed him busking at the door, collecting money in a Neapolitan ice cream bucket They
exchanged a brief glance before she ascended the
steps into the hotel lobby. For a moment, she
thought she heard the opening chords of "Good
Vibrations" following her through the doors. But
long before she was out of earshot, it was clear that
Jeff was playing a different song. •©■
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LONG FICTION RUNNER UP
After an hour Kurt quietly rolls off
the bed, the air in the room
heavy with old sweat. Blindly
pulling his jeans on, he checks
the pocket for his notebook and
pen, and then glances back towards the bed. The
nameless slut sleeps soundlessly in the tenuous
warmth of her stained sheets, another character
for Kurt's notebook. She drools quietly as the
night's dusky light seeps through the blinds, drawing bars down her face.
They're all beautiful in the dark, he thinks. A
rekindling desire flickers through his youthful
body as he opens the door. Maybe again, he
promises the naked frame, knowing that maybe
means certainly.
Hot rubber lingers in his nostrils as Kurt digs a
cigarette out from his jacket pocket, striding down
the drab hallways of the apartment complex. As he
steps into the chilled autumn midnight he stops to
ignite, sucking the fire in gently but still failing to
avoid coughing twice.
Just a few more and I'll get used to it, he muses,
smoke seeping through his hps.
The streets are hazy with unmoving mist; all is
quiet in this suburbia of white houses and pink
apartment buildings. Four am, his watch reads.
Everybody at the party should be either passed out
on the floor or in bed with new strangers by now.
Kurt considers making the six-minute trek back for
a place to sleep, but trudges off instead in the other
direction; another slow, aimless walk to reflect on
yet another tired, wet chapter of a night
Of all the physical intimacies he readily shares
with these strangers, he still can't bring himself to
fall asleep between the used linens. Perhaps a
shard of a strange morality lies embedded within;
going to bed is one thing, but staying the night is for
real love.
Is it him or is it just Lana's perception of him
that has changed? I don't know either. In most likelihood, they both changed when he left her, two
days shy of their second year together. Does that
mean everything was a he?
Was it really a mistake? After all, he is writing
better now.
He walks toward the bay, trying to organize a
mad array of dioughts; the contradicting images
of Lana, and of himself, before, during and after
their time together. For years he'd consoled
friends who'd been left behind by a "heartless
prick," or something along those fines. It feels
strange to finally become the asshole ex-
boyfriend he's spent so much time degrading.
Maybe they all had their reasons too. Or maybe
he really is just a heartless prick.
A cold wind sighs over him when Kurt arrives
onto the gray sands of the beach. The wooden
bench is damp, but he pays no mind as he sits
down to survey the empty shoreline. Coughing
over another cigarette, he pulls out his notebook to
continue wondering about what he has become,
what his protagonist will be like. Cold, blue waves
wash ashore as I wonder with him.
Nameless sluts, he scribbles. He scrawls down a
hst of images that have crossed his mind through
the day. Bittersweet cigarettes. Sex without love
(empty sex). Empty feelings? Pathetic feelings. Self-
destructive tendencies=cigarettes as metaphors for
sex? Sex=fake love...cigarettes=fake heat/fire (symbol for passion). Can't sleep with them, always
leaves. He takes lonely walks of contemplation.
Becoming the kinda guy he used to hate (contrast
with childhood expectations/dreams)...
It's been almost two years since he wrote his
last story; that was back in high school, in his junior year. He's tried writing since then, and he has
managed to churn out a few stories but, they're
never any good anymore. They're all too dull, too
immersed with plain characters in ordinary situations. Everybody was too good, too clean, too perfect, to be interesting. Happiness is boring in fiction, and dirt is what makes any character worth
writing about.
I'm becoming a dirty son-of-a-bitch, Kurt writes.
And the writer feels satisfied.
But what happens to him? Kurt thinks. The elements are there, the situation is set: now what he
needs is a plot. Storyline: he jots down, and stares
out to the dark foamy waves for inspiration. The
sky is going from black to a dark shade of blue.
Footsteps crunch the sands behind him and a
lonely girl walks onto the beach. She stops when
she sees him, her black ponytail dangling behind
her head. Her white jacket can't disguise the fact
that she's wearing her pajamas. She can't be more
than eighteen.
"Couldn't sleep," she suddenly tells him. "You
shouldn't smoke," she adds, watching him inhale
another mouthfiil.
"Well," he answers as he exhales, "you
shouldn't be out this late, there's a lotta dangerous people around."
"Are you one of them?"
"No, I'm just saying." He throws his finished cigarette out into the darkness.
"Oh..." She sounds disappointed. "Can I sit
down?"
"Um, yeah, I guess..." Kurt shifts to the side as
she joins him on the damp wooden bench. "You got
a name?" he asks her.
"Yes, do you?"
"Kurt."
"liv." She glances down at the notebook on his
lap. "What're you writing?"
"Hm? Oh, just a story. What're you doing walking around at..." He looks at his watch, "...four thirty in the morning?"
"I told you, I can't sleep. What's it about?"
"Just a guy who..." Kurt sighs. "He breaks up
with his long-term girlfriend, and starts getting into
Of all the physical intimacies HE READILY SHARES WITH
these strangers, he still
can't bring himself to fall
asleep between the used
linens. Perhaps a shard of
a strange morality lies
embedded within; going to
bed is one thing, but staying the night is for real
LOVE.
all these random hook-ups and whatever, and he
starts feeling pathetic...something like that You
hve around here?"
"No. What happens to him?"
"That's what I'm trying to figure out."
"Why does he break up with his girlfriend?"
"Because...it's just not working out I guess. And
I think it's more interesting that way, as a story. It'd
be too ordinary if they just lived happily." He clears
his throat
"I think it'd be more interesting if they did hve
happily... Failed relationships are what's too ordinary." She doesn't even try to hide her bitterness.
"Who's heard ofa relationship actually working out
perfectly?"
A pale yellow blurs the blue horizon and Kurt
now has a clearer vision of Liv, her face illuminated by the imminent sunrise. Her hair is actually a
dark shade of brown, dyed as indicated by the
growing black roots. Glasses frame the small, fragile features of her quiet face. She stares ahead at
the cold waves, letting Kurt examine and admire
her beauty.
"Is he you?" she suddenly says, keeping her
gaze towards the water. "Your protagonist, I mean."
Kurt pauses.
"Yes," he says, "he is."
"Who came first?" she asks.
"What do you mean?"
"I mean, is he based on you? Or are you based
on him?"
Kurt turns to look at her again, but she doesn't
answer his gaze.
"Why do you say that?" he asks.
"I don't know... Just this whole, sitting out alone
at the beach at dawn; seems a bit melodramatic,
don't you think? Like you're a character in a movie
or something."
The waves ride over the smooth, wet sand as the
sun stays hidden beneath the distant surface. Kurt
doesn't know what to say, and neither do I.
Suddenly, Liv leans forward, throwing off her
shoes and socks before standing up.
"Watch me drown," she orders, and sprints
toward the morning tide.
"What? Hey wait!" Kurt throws his notebook
down as he jumps to his feet and starts chasing
her. "You'll freeze to death!" He rips his jacket off
as he runs after her.
Her feet splatter the icy water before she dives
head first into the freezing blue. She doesn't float
back up.
"Shit! Wait!" Kurt's shoes splash in the water
before he jumps beneath the foamy surface
after her.
White bubbles part to unveil the monotonous
blue scenery. Against the unchanging paleness he
sees Liv lying face down against the ground, her
arms wrapped tightly around a rock.
Kurt swims frantically and grabs her by the
waist, pulling her away with all his might. She
resists with her fingers frozen in their grip, but
he rips her away and starts swimming up, holding her firmly against him. She kicks and
swings her arms in a fury, hitting Kurt in the
shins and the cheek as they break the surface
and he drags her back towards the beach.
"What the hell do you think you're doing?" he
yells, wrestling to keep her writhing body pinned
down. She stops struggling and Kurt relaxes a bit,
allowing her to push him off in a final burst of energy. They he on the wet sand, exhausted.
"Why would you do that?" Kurt demands.
"Why wouldn't I?" Her voice is quiet but unset-
tlingly strong. "I can't trust anything in this world,
not even my own feelings..."
"What're you talking about...there's still a lotta
things left in this world to believe in."
"What would you know? You fuck up your own
life just so you can write better. Where's the truth
in your writing if it's all so...contrived? Where's the
truth in that? I thought I loved my boyfriend, but
then I left him. Where's the truth in that?"
They he in silence, their breathing starting to
relax. Kurt is too cold to shiver.
"How many times did you tell her you loved
her?" she asks.
"Many times," he sighs.
"Where's the truth in that now?"
"I did love her, back then...just because I
don't  anymore...that  doesn't  make   that  a
lie...things change, people change...things that
might not be true anymore are still true in...the
context of their time..."
"Nothing changes..."
The sun has broken through the surface, and
the sky has turned a bright blue. Cars run through
the streets, and people start scattering the sidewalks. Nobody notices the boy and the girl lying
soaked on the beach, unconscious.
I bend down and lift Kurt up, draping his
arm around my shoulder as I hold onto his
limp body by the waist. Picking Liv up is a lot
harder with only one arm to work with, but
after a few minutes of struggling I am dragging
the two of them over the sand. I rest them
down onto the bench before walking back to
pick up Kurt's jacket and placing it over them.
With the warm sun looking down on them, they
should be alright.
After an hour Kurt quietly opens his eyes. He
doesn't know how they managed to drag themselves away from the water, and is too tired to care.
"Liv," he says, nudging her gently, "wake up."
She stirs, squinting her eyes as she slowly tries
to remember where she is.
"Let's go, we'll freeze to death out here," Kurt
tells her. She nods, and they quietly stand up and
trudge back to the street
"I hve that way," Liv says, pointing to the left.
"Oh." Kurt stops. "I'm heading straight..."
"Well, goodbye then," Liv replies, already starting to walk her way.
"Wait," he calls out, and she does.
"People do change, Liv."
"What're you talking about?" she asks skeptically.
"We can always change."
She looks at his face for a second.
"You'll have to do better than that to convince
me," she replies.
"If you give me time, I will."
She keeps her stare on him for a moment
longer, then turns around and walks away.
Kurt watches her disappear before deciding
he should head back home as well. He walks
ten minutes before realising that his notebook
and pen are gone.
He decides to go on. •*•
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THE UBYSSEY
LITERARY SUPPLEMENT . .   .^ jo,r~f- ■>$>»■>>
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SNAP FICTION WINNER
by Lindsay Nicholas
ixen
\     /
y M    ixen isn't your best friend but
\ J      y°u want her to be. She calls
\     I        y°u at 11:00 at night and does-
\ t n't think that you may be tired.
▼ You   aren't,   but  you   would
never consider calling anyone at that hour. She
hails you to her house, not thinking it would be
an inconvenience. In this case it is: the bus running between your house and hers doesn't run
this late. It's a half-hour walk but you make it in
twenty minutes, walking fast in the nighttime
coolness. You wouldn't consider physical movement over the same distance in the daytime,
summer heat keeping sane people inside.
Vixen gets cramps worse in August. The heat
maybe, or the season gone stagnant, the air still.
Whatever. She wants you to perform a distraction,
keep her mind off the fluctuating pain. Administer
vast numbers of painkillers and make sure she
doesn't overdose.
She is at the toilet when you arrive at the back
door of the house. You can hear her moan, the echo
off the tiles. Not vomiting, but making all of the
motions of doing so. She hasn't eaten all day, at
first just not feeling good, and then after, the pain.
There are two lights ifluminating the basement
in patches. One in the bathroom fans its shocking
yellow-tinged luminosity out into the hall. The second is a table lamp, its pale glow tentatively tempting you into the den.
Vixen is a waddling silhouette when she
emerges from the bathroom, fight left on behind
her. You have turned the TV to music videos, and
she winces.
"Not those. Too sexy." Her speech is moist.
You thumb the rubberish buttons of the remote
control. You helped yourself to one half of the
loveseat, assuming the nest on the couch (placed at
a ninety degree angle to you) is Vixen's. She sinks
onto the couch, wrapping herself in a heavy quilt,
despite the warm temperature, and pulls her knees
up into a tent, slides them down again.
On the table in the corner between the couch
and loveseat there is a package of brand-name
menstrual-relief tablets. Two of the pill-bubbles are
empty, small ovals of foil crinkled away. Another
bottle   of   generic   painkillers   sits   with   its
fid off. Water supplied in a tall glass, half full to you,
half empty to Vixen. You screw the lid back onto the
bottle of pills with your fingertips.
"Not this," Vixen references the television.
You've left it on a public television pledge drive.
Non-distracting.
You would do anything for her, and you hope
that she would do anything for you, if you could
think of anything to ask. You think sometimes that
she has you because you don't interrupt when she
talks, don't often have to say anything at all.
Sometimes you forget that to properly get by in
society it is necessary to communicate verbally at
least occasionally. If there are situations where
Vixen can do the talking for you, even if she doesn't always get across the same ideas you might
have expressed, you don't mind because it's usually close enough and you trust her.
Vixen is medium-sized with brown hair, just
like you. She wears glasses, but only when she has
to, which isn't most of the time. When she pulls
them out you are always surprised, but don't
remark. You think she is self-conscious of them
because when you used to tease her she'd screw up
her face and ignore you. This isn't really fair
because she still notices, loudly, your big feet and
curly hair. But then, you never screw up your face.
You just wish that you had grown into your feet like
everyone said you would.
Vixen gave herself a haircut at the beginning of
the summer. She then asked you not less than
forty-six times whether you liked the way some
parts were long and how some patches of her scalp
almost showed through on top. She wanted you to
get a similar cut. In reply you put one hand on
either side of your head, pulled your hair down flat
and let go so it sprung back into it's full-bodied
glory. (You secretly love your hair.) It's not that her
hair style looks bad, you suggest, it just hasn't come
into style yet.
You drift all around the cable channels, start
eyeing the DVD collection sorted into a rack on the
floor beside the television. All Vixen's favorites, you
have seen them all.
"Stop there," Vixen waves her arm.
"It's the pledge drive," you protest, rather, comment with a slight inflection at the end.
"I was watching it." Voice muffled, she is not
facing the screen anymore, rolled over so her face
is pressed into the back cushions of the couch. Her
legs are moving, first one bends up, then down, followed by the other. Bicycle-riding motions. "This is
just the introduction. It's a biography or something. You'll like it"
You are pleased that Vixen remembers that
you like learning the stories of other people's
lives. That she is thinking of you even through
her pain.
As die show starts, however, you realise you
gave Vixen an enthusiastic review of the same program just last week. You even thought at the time
that you did a fine job of describing the details you
found fascinating. Before you can comment Vixen
violently pulls in her breath, legs moving at double
speed. Maybe she is hurting too much to remember. Maybe in your excitement at having so much
to say about anything you forgot to mention the
subject, but you don't think so.
She tilts her head back against the armrest of
the couch. Whimpers and groans at the same time.
"Maybe change it. The guy's voice was soothing
before. I guess it's not working anymore."
You hover your thumb over the directional
arrows on the remote control. Her hair, you
notice, is growing back in ugly tufts on the top of
her head. •*■
osure
?
SNAP FICTION RUNNER UP
by Marisa Chandler
THE UBYSSEY
UTERARY SUPPLEMENT
e was stranded on an island. No,
the middle of the Arctic. He was
leading a noble tribe of penguins
across the Arctic tundra; heroically looking into the distance.
Standing in front of a cliff looking into the abyss, he
thought of home. He ruffled his already wind-tousled hair with a look of artistic frustration.
Lucy opened her eyes. One day, she thought, I'll
see him again. He must be out there somewhere.
He didn't write, he didn't call. Was he hungry, was
he cold? It had been three months since he set off
to "find himself." He said he wouldn't stop until he
reached some answers, he would trek up the
Himalayan mountains, and sleep in the streets of
Rome, "Anything to get some answers," he had
said, looking deep into her eyes. Lucy thought he
was so brave, and deep. But most of all misunderstood. He just has so much artistic soul, no one
understands him like I do! Lucy rolled over, sighed,
and stared at the framed picture of him on her
dressing table.
Daniel woke up and peered outside his window, sticking his finger between the blinds so he
could see. His blinds were always closed now; he
was paranoid that she would somehow figure out
where he was. He had moved apartments and started taking alternative routes to school. When he
"left" he even staged a fake goodbye party for himself. All his friends had come. Maybe telling her he
was leaving the country indefinitely to "find himself had been cowardly, but every day he was
more and more convinced he had done the right
thing. I mean, who needs closure anyway?
She walked through her day imagining the perils that he could be going through. She pictured
him sitting in a cauldron somewhere in the deep
jungle while culturally unidentifiable pygmies
danced around him. He struggled against the ropes
keeping him in the boiling water, but he was a
hero, he would somehow escape the cannibals and
make it back to...Lucy! Firelight gleamed on his
poetic face. Lucy sang while she was in the shower,
imagining that she too was joining him in the boiling pot and soon to be eaten by cannibals alongside
her one true love. How Romantic!
The fast food place interview didn't take as long
as Daniel thought it would. He had given up his job
at the coffee shop in order to make his departure
convincing. It wouldn't do to tell her he was leaving
and then show up for a shift with her. Some ofhis
friends thought that fast food was a step down, but
Daniel didn't agree. Anything was worth shaking
She pictured him sitting in
a cauldron somewhere in
the deep jungle while
culturally unidentifiable
pygmies danced around him.
that girl. He whistled as he strolled back to his
apartment. Things were looking up. The manager
told him he could start work at twelve the next day.
All the customers had left the coffee shop, so
Lucy turned up the music while she swept the floor.
What was he doing, was he thinking of her?
Missing her? Right now? She envisioned him sleeping in an alley in Shanghai, shivering under a thin
blanket and looking up at the stars. Contemplating
life. Contemplating humanity. She spun around
with the broom, dancing. Her mind was filled with
images of his trials and hardships. If only he'd
send a letter, a postcard. If only he would call. She
would pay for a collect call! If only. She sighed, then
finished cleaning and locked up the store. Lucy
hummed under her breath as she walked home to
dream of him.
He was enjoying his first day of work. It didn't
take Daniel long to learn how to use the all the
equipment, and now he was working at the cash
register. There was a pretty steady flow of people,
and the day was going by quickly. He bopped his
head to the radio music in the background while
the other workers put together the Burgerriiiffic
meals. He liked the way this place worked, no daydreaming student workers. It was more like a well-
organised beehive with everyone working toward
one goal. Perfectly anonymous. He looked happily
at the long line in front of him.
Lucy waited in line patiently. She wanted to
get an ice cream before going to class. What if
he was lost in the streets of Moscow? Or swimming with sharks in.wait where did they have
sharks? Lucy was still pondering the shark
dilemma when she realised she was at the
front of the line. She distractedly told the
cashier what she wanted. With a trembling
hand he handed her the ice cream cone, nearly
dropping it on her. "Oops, watch out!" she said.
Poor guy, it's probably his first day, she thought
sympathetically. Then she drifted out of the
line and walked outside.
Oh my God this can't be happening, thought
Daniel. Lucy stood staring at the menu board above
his head. She was mouthing words. She looked at
him in surprise. What would she do? Would she
yell? I hope she doesn't try and kill me, he thought
anxiously.
"Um, can I get a chocolate ice cream please?"
He stared at her in amazement He went and got
the ice cream, still afraid that at the last second she
might shove it in his face. Daniel searched her face
for anger, resentment and then nearly dropped the
ice cream on her.
"Oops watch out!" She took the ice cream and
left the restaurant. He watched her leave, still
dumbfounded. "How could she not recognise me!"
he said exasperatedly. This was impossible, this
was unfair, he was the one who didn't care about
her, how dare she ignore.
"Can I place an order please?" said the next
man in line. °>

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