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The Corne¬ Daily Sun Vol. 128, No. 108


Bus Drivers Reach Deal With TCAT Management



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After more than six months of heated negotiations between bus drivers and management over the terms of a new contract, TCAT employees approved the final version of the contract on Friday. Workers’ acceptance of the agreement comes after they rejected two separate proposals put forth by TCAT management and the drivers’ union, United Auto Workers Local 2300, in September and November. On Nov. 10, about one third of TCAT drivers called in sick, citing discontent over negotiations and disrupting service on at least 11 rural routes. TCAT bus operators and maintenance workers voted 48 to 16 on Friday to ratify the two-and-a-half-year contract, which will replace the three-year contract that expired on Sept. 11, according to Patty Poist, communications marketing and “TCAT ... worked diligently to manager for TCAT. raise wages and improve overall The contract — which will expire working conditions.” June 30, 2014 — Joe Turcotte calls for a $500 bonus payable in 2012, a $525 bonus in 2013 and a 1.25-percent wage increase in 2014, according to a TCAT press release. Joe Turcotte, TCAT’s general manager, attributed the 25 percent of drivers who said they were still unsatisfied with the contract terms to an inability to “adequately communicate” that TCAT is facing budgetary constraints. “TCAT over the past several years — in better economic times — worked diligently to raise wages and improve overall working conditions for union represented employees,” Turcotte said in an email Monday. “Times are tougher now.” TCAT, which operated under more than a $300,000 deficit at the end See TCAT page 5

News Pursuit of Happiness

Prof. Shimon Edelman, psychology, speaks about his book, which examines happiness from the neuroscience perspective. | Page 3

Opinion Diverse Reading

Nathaniel Rosen ’12 responds to a professor’s critique of the New Student Reading Project book. | Page 7

Arts Lack of Progress

Gina Cargas ’14 condemns Lavinia Currier’s latest film Oka! for providing too much of a Western perspective. | Page 9

Sports Setting Records

Track team sophomore Montez Blair finishes ninth in the nation in the high jump. | Page 16

Weather Rainy Days HIGH: 72 LOW: 37


The Gussman Jazz Combo, with Spencer Amer ’15 on trumpet and Edan Soroker ’12 on alto saxophone, perform at dinner at the Hans Bethe House Monday evening.

Muslims at C.U. Back Bloomberg By JACOB GLICK Sun Staff Writer

Despite their opposition to his strong defense of the New York Police Department surveillance program involving Muslim students, student leaders from Cornell’s Muslim community expressed measured support for the selection of NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg as this year’s Convocation speaker. Bloomberg once again plunged headfirst into the muddy waters of post-9/11 security last

month by backing an NYPD program that has tracked the emails of Muslim students and Muslim student organizations in 2006 and 2007. “The police department goes where there are allegations,” Bloomberg said in a press conference on Feb. 21. “And they look to see those allegations are true. That’s what you’d expect them to do. That’s what you’d want them to do. Remind yourself when you turn out the light tonight.” This fiery defense of police conduct ignited See MUSLIMS page 4

Former Iranian Diplomat Decries Foreign Sanctions By EMMA COURT Sun Staff Writer

The same day the United Nations and Iran sparred over the country’s human rights record, Dr. Abbas Maleki, former deputy foreign minister of Iran, spoke Monday afternoon in Goldwin Smith Hall about its foreign policy and possibilities for future economic development. Maleki spoke of an embattled Iran caught between United States forces, United Nations sanctions and an uncertain economic climate. “Iranians feel the world situation of Iran is becoming weaker every day; therefore, they must do something,” Maleki said. “That is the mentality of Iranians.” Maleki said that with the end of the Cold War and the opening of Iran’s borders, Iran has been gradually abandoning its Middle Eastern culture in favor of an Asian identity, capitalizing on an increased demand in Asia for Iranian oil and natural gas. Despite emerging economies in China, India and Russia, Maleki said that America is still the world leader in technology, and that therefore, Iran needs to forge a better relationship with the United States. Maleki suggested Iran could improve its foreign relations by trying to solve its problems with the U.S., increasing production of oil and gas and expanding its relations with Arab countries. Maleki also pointed out that the economic sanctions enacted by foreign officials most directly affect the people of Iran.

“It’s not the government of Iran which receives more negative impacts, injuries, pains; it’s the people of Iran that receive it,” Maleki said. Maleki presented a photograph of smiling, Iranian boys, which he said showed the possibilities of Iran’s future in the next generation. When an audience member questioned why Maleki chose a picture that featured only boys, Maleki countered that women are very active in Iranian society. However, audience member and Iranian

citizen, Alireza Vahid grad said in an interview that the definition of active women in Iran differs greatly from the definition in the United States. “His definition of women participating in the country is probably different from what you Americans have in mind,” Vahid said. “My society is very conservative. Women can’t participate as much. But I believe the situation is much better than in most other countries in See IRAN page 5


Opening communication | Dr. Abbas Maleki, former deputy foreign minister of Iran, speaks to students, faculty and community members on Monday afternoon in Goldwin Smith Hall.

2 THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012



Tuesday, March 13, 2012



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Prof’s Book Studies Happiness

By CHRIS LEAVITT Sun Contributor

According to Prof. Shimon Edelman, psychology, it was the pursuit of happiness — and his new book — that brought a crowd of local Ithacans to Buffalo Street Books Thursday night. Edelman’s new book, The Happiness of Pursuit: What Neuroscience Can Teach Us About the Good Life, challenges the conventional divisions that exist between science and the humanities through studying the human brain’s decision-making abilities. Edelman’s work also grapples with the idea of reconciling neuroscience with the everyday pursuit of happiness. Edelman said that he disagrees with the tendency of some neuroscientists to treat different areas of the brain as distinct from one another in the various functions they perform. He called the approach “fashionable,” but said that this concept is overly technical and disregards what he called “the holistic nature of human social interaction.” “Our minds do not end at our skulls,” Edelman said, referring to the Buddhist idea of a mental web of cause and effect that extends beyond the individual. Edelman said in an interview that although he studies many Eastern philosophies, including Buddhism, he does not explicitly follow their teachings. In fact, Edelman said he was recently faced with criticism from some Buddhists following an interview with Salon magazine in January, in which he disagreed with the Buddhist notion of transcending pleasure and pain. Edelman said he has previously asserted that those who are able to forgo physical pleasure and pain are not human. Those offended by this assessment said Edelman’s ideas were a criticism of the Dalai Lama and other monks who spend

their lives working to achieve transcendence. However, Edelman explained on Thursday that, in fact, he meant to say that the Dalai Lama’s ability to rise above the human condition of suffering and happiness makes him more, rather than less, human. Edelman said the idea for the book came to him while he was on a sabbatical from teaching at Cornell. Edelmen said that, while hiking, he found happiness as he enjoyed a particularly beautiful view. However, he felt a “nagging urge” to move on from the spot. That inexplicable urge, he said, is what inspired him to explore the relationship between neuroscience and happiness. In his talk, Edelman compared the relationship between neuroscience and happiness to “catch-and-release” fishing. When one finds happiness, he said, it is not necessarily the catch that brings the joy, but rather the prospect of another catch in the future. According to Edelman, humans have the tendency to attain happiness but feel the need to let it go — much like his urge to move on from the beautiful view during his hike. Edelman said he believes that the constant pursuit of happiness is an important factor in encouraging people to continue moving forward. “Motivation has to be there for everything else to happen,” he said. An audience member at the talk asked whether one could share happiness that is caught and released with others. Edelman responded that selfishness alone cannot be what motivates people, asserting that individuals cannot create thoughts without the influence of external factors. Another person asked whether there exists a dark side to happiness. “Not in my book,” Edelman said. Chris Leavitt can be reached at

Blue man group


Ali Yazdi ’13, a member of AIESIC Cornell, which helps students find international internships, painted his chest blue to advertise the group’s Summer Exchange Program on Ho Plaza Monday.

Unabomber’s Brother Will Speak in Ithaca David Kaczynski, who turned in his brother as the Unabomber, will speak on March 27 as part of a panel series featuring people who had to make choices about the actions of someone close to them, The Ithaca Journal reported. Vandalized Store Aided Through Social Media A movement organized through Facebook came to the aid of a business in the Commons, which was damaged on March 9 during a drunken brawl, accor-

ding to The Ithaca Journal. The owner of Evolution102 saw sales quadruple as Ithacans patronized the store to raise funds for a broken display window, The Journal reported. Immigrant Services Charity Wins Award The Immigrant Services Program of Catholic Charities of Tompkins County received an award on Feb. 23 for helping groups with no access to human services, The Ithaca Journal reported. — Compiled by Dennis Liu


Faculty, alumni and students of the College of Art, Architecture and Planning eat lunch in the Milstein Hall atrium at this weekend’s Celebrate Milstein Hall event.

Koolhaas Speaks at Milstein Event By SARAH SASSOON Sun Contributor

Last weekend, about 800 faculty, staff, students and alumni of the University’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning gathered for Celebrate Milstein Hall, an event featuring lectures, exhibitions and performances by AAP alumni and faculty. The celebration commenced Friday afternoon with an event featuring Rem Koolhaas, the Dutch architect who designed the building. About 300 audience members filled the Abby and Howard Milstein Auditorium to hear the architect discuss his life story, learn what inspired his style and engage him in a question and answer session. Though the building’s construction took only two years, AAP Dean Kent Kleinman said that Milstein Hall was more than a decade in the making. During the talk, Koolhaas described how, when he was 24 years old, working as a journalist in Paris, he decided that he wanted to become an architect instead. Koolhaas said that as an architecture student in London, he was particularly inspired by famed German architect Mathias Ungers. Koolhaas later studied under Ungers at Cornell in 1969 –– the first year that Ungers served as the Chair of the Department of Architecture. Koolhaas described Ungers as an architect whose “drive was not entirely to do new things, but to love buildings that exist.” Many people at the event praised Koolhaas’ project for its innovative approach to design. “The building connects previously isolated buildings,” Kleinman said of Milstein Hall. Both Kleinman and Koolhaas emphasized the importance of preserving buildings, rather than just simply tearing down structures and building new ones in their place. In partic-

ular, they said that Milstein Hall embraced modernity while maintaining an appreciation for the beauty of the adjacent older structures, Rand and Sibley Halls. Koolhaas and Klienman also said that with the development of Milstein Hall, they wanted to create a building that would encourage academic growth and expansion. “Faculty and students can now bump into each other and see what the other is doing in a casual way that just didn’t happen before,” Kleinman said. “I believe that’s a form of education.” Koolhaas also emphasized the role of the public sector in the process of designing a building. He said his buildings are ones that have the potential to be “consumed by the population at large.” Kleinman echoed this sentiment, saying that Milstein Hall was built “100 percent for performance.” Keith Heron ’82, an alumnus of the College who now works in the Office of Building and Code Enforcement in Binghamton, N.Y., said he believes students will benefit from the new studio space in Milstein Hall. AAP student Tamara Jamil ’16 added the building has room for improvement. “Its current condition is pristine, not personal,” she said. “Milstein is a great building; it just has to adapt more to us students, not the other way around.” Kleinman said that since the building has only been in use for about a semester and a half, both faculty and students are still learning how to use it. “We have to figure out how to play it,” Kleinman said. “It’s going to take longer than that to figure out how to use all its beautiful pieces.” Sarah Sassoon can be reached at

4 THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Bloomberg’s Selection Met With Mixed Reactions MUSLIMS

Continued from page 1

widespread criticism on campus, both from Muslim student leaders and administration officials. Those critiques, however, have not necessarily translated into discontent for his selection as commencement speaker. “It’s been disappointing how [Bloomberg] handled the NYPD situation,” said Sara Rahman ’12, president of the Committee for the Advancement of Muslim Culture and president of the Islamic Alliance for Justice. Though she also cited Bloomberg’s previous support for the Park 51 “Ground Zero Mosque” as another reason to be disheartened by his position on this issue, she noted that she thought that his appearance at her graduation could nonetheless be an opportunity for constructive dialogue. “While he’s here, I think it would incredibly productive if he met with the Muslim community at Cornell,” Rahman said. “Cornell has some of the most vibrant and incredible Muslim leaders … and I bet if [Bloomberg] met some of us personally, he wouldn’t be as quick to approve the NYPD actions.” The University’s official stance, as laid out by Tommy Bruce, vice president for the University’s communications office, strongly supported the selection of Mayor Bloomberg, while also condemning the sort of ethnically targeted surveillance of which the NYPD is accused. “In general, we don’t make a practice of commenting on past actions of speakers our students invite to Cornell. We, of course, do not condone police profiling on our campus,” Bruce said. He expressed excitement for Bloomberg’s address, saying, “On this campus of many voices and opinions, we’re honored to have Mayor Bloomberg address our very accomplished and diverse graduating class.” Renee Alexander ’74, associate dean of students and director of intercultural programs, also referenced Mayor Bloomberg’s support for the Muslim community center near Ground Zero as proof of a “track record of fairness and transparency,” and strongly defended his selection as the keynote speaker in May. “I think that before we judge Mayor Bloomberg’s actions and response, it’s important to gather all the facts … He has the complex job of ensuring New York City remains safe, while keeping would-be troublemakers from inflicting harm on its citizens, all the while balancing citizens’ rights to privacy, security, and safety,” Alexander said. “He is an

“I bet if [Bloomberg] met some of us personally, he wouldn’t be as quick to approve the NYPD actions.” Sara Rahman ’12 excellent choice to be the Class of 2012’s Convocation speaker, and I am looking forward to hearing him.” However, many faculty members said they do not support the decision to bring Bloomberg to campus for Convocation. According to Prof. Elizabeth Sanders, government, Bloomberg’s support of initiatives such as the Park 51 Muslim community center does not excuse his support for the NYPD surveillance program, nor does it merit his selection as Convocation speaker. “I don’t think it is appropriate for a variety of reasons, including the outrageous recent surveillance operation,” Sanders said of Bloomberg’s selection. “It would be nice if the speaker were someone who better supported our professed ideals.” Sanders’ concerns were echoed by Prof. Eric Cheyfitz, American studies. “I think the invitation to Mayor Bloomberg, given his support of the NYPD’s blanket surveillance of Muslims, sends a negative message to the entire Cornell community about respect for civil liberties,” Cheyfitz said. Similarly, Royce Novak ’12 expressed reservations about Bloomberg’s selection in a letter to The Sun. “Many of us [seniors] are upset because, in this past year, Bloomberg has attacked a wide range of basic civil liberties,” Novak said. Another senior, Student Assembly Vice President Adam Nicoletti ’12, a member of the S.A. Convocation Committee, which arranges each Convocation address, said that he supports the Mayor’s appearance because he believes Bloomberg is a “prolific and respectable speaker.” “This ongoing controversy does not dilute or reduce the value of [Bloomberg’s] experience in both the political and business worlds when offering the Cornell students of 2012 advice they can follow for the rest of their lives,” Nicoletti said. “The sentiments he provides us will be extremely valuable regardless.” Jacob Glick can be reached at


TCAT Approves New Contract TCAT

Continued from page 1

of 2011, faces a continued financial shortfall for 2012, Turcotte said. The ability for TCAT management to strike a balance between providing continued wage increases and offering employees a more comprehensive health insurance plan has been a point of contention over the last several months. However, the new contract seeks to mitigate this tension by offering drivers and mechanics a dual option for health insurance. The plan will give workers a choice between a more expensive plan with broader coverage and a more affordable plan with “a little less coverage,” Poist said. “[The Simply Blue plan] entails higher co-pays and deductibles and therefore is less expensive in terms of premiums for both employee and company,” Alice Eccleston, TCAT’s assistant general manager, said in an email. Employees who do not believe that Simply Blue offers adequate coverage can pay more for an alternative preferred provider plan — a more flexible option that allows the insured person to seek medical care from an out-of-network provider — that costs both the employee and the company more in out-of-pocket deductibles, according to Eccleston. “Either way, all employees have comprehensive coverage,” she said. “Roughly 20 percent of our employees opted for the less expensive option.” According to a press release, the dual option plan aims to keep the cost of insurance premiums low while accepting “modest increases” in co-pays and deductibles. Poist said TCAT will see premium insurance rates climb about five percent, an increase she said was much lower than those faced by employees at many other companies this year. Despite its strengths, the final contract did not include a “me too” clause — which would have required TCAT to raise employee wages any time management received wage increases. Poist called this provision “untenable.” The second contract proposal, put to the workers for consideration in November, raised debates over the inclusion of the me too clause, The Sun reported in November. “[It] would make absolutely no sense in the event [that] you had an administrative promotion,” Poist said. “No company could sustain something like that. A study in labor law would confirm that.” In November, UAW President Jack Kaminsky criticized TCAT management’s resistance to the clause, claiming TCAT was unwilling to make the same concessions they expected from their workers. However, in a press release Monday, Kaminsky echoed TCAT management’s relief that a resolution had been reached. “We are happy the contract was ratified and now we can all move forward,” he said. The Sun’s News Department can be reached at

Maleki Stresses Need for Press IRAN

Continued from page 1

mind,” Vahid said. “My society is very conservative. Women can’t participate as much. But I believe the situation is much better than in most other countries in the Middle East.” Maleki described Iran’s foreign policy record since the revolution in 1979 as “acceptable.” “After revolution, there have been many mistakes and much progress,” he said. “Now if you come to Tehran, it is a very very beautiful city, with high-rises, industry. There have been some mistakes also … but after many, many crises Iran has remained without any injuries — after Kuwait, the invasion of Afghanistan, the invasion of Iraq, the Soviet collapse — it’s very, very hard to do that.” Maleki also said that after the Iranian Revolution, negative media attention has impaired Iran’s ability to engage the world in a dialogue about foreign policy issues. “Iranians don’t have access to do interviews with The New York Times,” he said. “It is true Iran can do that, and I think Iran is ready. Iran needs media coverage, more discussions and more and better proposals. With sanctions, military attacks, these issues vanish.” He proposed communication as a potential solution to the unfavorable publicity. “The best way for both sides is to sit and negotiate and talk about

issues,” Maleki said. “I am not in Iran’s government, but I think Iran’s government is ready to do something.” Vahid said that Maleki’s speech lagrely met his expectations, but that he was somewhat surprised that Maleki criticized the Iranian government. “This guy has been the government. He holds a faculty position in the biggest university in the country. I didn’t expect him to have opinions against the government,” Vahid said. “It wasn’t heavily biased towards supporting the government — he mentioned they’d made mistakes.” Vahid noted that Maleki had been part of the party of a candidate opposing incumbent president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the 2009 election. “[Maleki] was definitely not supporting the current president [in his speech at Cornell], that’s for sure, but in terms of the whole system as an entity, he’s part of it and doesn’t have any issues with it,” Vahid said. Maleki’s speech is one lecture in the Einaudi Center’s Foreign Policy Distinguished Speaker Series. The Series hosts speakers who hold “a position of prominence ininternational affairs and can address topical issues from a variety of perspectives,” according to the Einaudi Center website. Emma Court can be reached at

THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012 5


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The Problem With Saving the World

n recent memory, I bought a sub-par cookie and a tepid cup of chocolate tasting water from someone fundraising on Ho Plaza. What bothers me isn’t so much that the experience wasn’t worth anywhere in the neighborhood of two dollars. What bothers me is that afterwards, I was left with a Styrofoam cup and a sheet of plastic wrap to throw away. I handed over my money for what most people would call a “good cause” — an organization run locally by my fellow students, that seeks to do good by the world and is willing to unravel the logistics to do it. I feel relatively assured that most of my money will probably go into paying for things that aren’t administrative overhead — travel costs, or paying for materials to build something or throwing a really expensive party. Or whatever. The point is,

are to making a budget. And I hate quartercarding because people stick their hands in their pockets and don’t make eye contact. How am I supposed to turn down the appeal of making the day of my fellow student a little brighter, contributing to a good cause AND getting something potentially tasty to eat before lecture? Damned if I do, damned if I don’t. Knowing the implications of my actions makes me reach for the “fair trade” tap of coffee when the night turns into a ridiculously early morning, in spite of knowing that the labeling is mostly a marketing gimmick. It’s why there’s a precariously stacked tower of reusable plastic on my counter, which required more energy to produce than its disposable counterpart. It’s why I still feel enormous guilt, because no matter how hard I try, somewhere in


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First World Problem


Ann Newcomb ’13 Jayant Mukhopadhaya ’15 Megan Zhou ’15 Oliver Kliewe ’14 Katharine Close ’14 Akane Otani ’14 Lauren Ritter ’13 Haley Velasco ’15 Daveen Koh ’15 Dennis Liu ’14 Utsav Rai ’15

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I feel okay about handing over my money, because ultimately I know I’m enabling my fellow students to do stuff that’s good for other people, and getting the chance to feel appropriately humanitarian myself. What’s not to love? On the other hand, I distinctly remember a time when Ho Plaza was covered with environmental groups informing me of the evils of disposable plastics and the importance of reducing our consumption. Every time I go to throw something away in a campus dining facility, an ominous gray sign passive aggressively informs me that landfill waste gets trucked to a facility where it remains for THOUSANDS OF YEARS. Ah. Crap. So having finished my dry, tasteless cookie and dumped the remains of a truly disappointing hot chocolate, I’m left standing next to the trash can, holding this cup and this piece of plastic wrap, with an image in my head of some poor fish somewhere who chokes on my Styrofoam cup. Or this piece of plastic wrap sitting in a landfill for hundreds of years. Or even better, breaking down in the ocean, getting eaten by a fish and introducing toxic plastics into the aquatic food chain. What’s a socially responsible student to do? Sure, I could have not purchased anything from this student group. Like hundreds of other Cornellians that cross Ho Plaza every day, I could have ignored the tablers, stuck my hands in my pockets so they couldn’t hand me a quarter card and kept walking. But I know how important the scant dollars from these sorts of things

every process I must have purchased the labor of some migrant worker working under appalling conditions, probably added to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and contributed to the cloud of greenhouse gases that’s slowly baking my planet. And don’t even start on how I feel when I dump three sets of disposable gloves into the trash — theoretically working on solutions to the “We’re-Using-Up-the-Earth” problem — over the course of a couple of hours in lab. In the end, I realized I was late for class and decided that being on time was more important than philosophically musing over a trash can. The problems I’m feeling guilt over have deep institutional causes, and some have been gaining momentum since the Industrial Revolution. I’m going to need the best education this institution can give me in order to fight them (which, in theory, involves going to class). I’m comforted by the thought that some of you environmental scientists or philosophers are undoubtedly more qualified to decide whether or not I should be feeling guilt over this issue. Until that decision happens, I’ll stick to the cause I know best — incidentally, it involves making cookies that are not overbaked and dry. Sorry, too busy baking cookies to feel guilty about how bad this nonstick pan is for the environment. Deborah Liu is a junior in the College of Engineering. She may be reached at First World Problem appears alternate Tuesdays this semester.

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THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012 7


Reading Into Diversity L

ast Tuesday, Professor Eric Cheyfitz argued that the selection of Romain Gary’s The Life Before Us for next year’s Cornell New Student Reading Project raises serious concerns about the state of diversity at Cornell. In actuality, though, some of the sentiments expressed in Professor Cheyfitz’s column are the true causes for concern. Professor Cheyfitz argues that the The Life Before Us, which tells the story of an Arab boy named Momo and Madame Rosa, the ex-prostitute and Holocaust survivor who raises him, presents a “deracinated Arab” and indulges in “both Arab and African stereotyping.” It fails to confront the “race issues in France in 1970,” continues Professor Cheyfitz, and presents Israel only “as a place that welcomes both Arabs and Jews, where he [Momo] and Madame Rosa will live together happily ever after in this fairy tale of Jewish-Arab bonding.” According to Professor Cheyfitz, these supposed failings are made all the more egregious in light of Cornell’s recent partnership with the Technion, as the book’s true force “is to deflect rather than engage the central issues of the Arab/Israeli and Arab/Jewish conflicts.” Based on such a reading, Professor Cheyfitz asks: “How are our Arab and Muslim students supposed to read this novel? Where is their representation in it? More broadly, what kind of a message does it send to underrepresented ‘minorities’ about their representation on campus?” To answer the question directly, Arab and Muslim students might decide to read the work by interpreting it quite like Professor Cheyfitz does. They might challenge the notion that The Life Before Us is indeed a “persuasive portrait of intercultural coexistence,” as an article in the Cornell Chronicle described it, and argue that rather than exploring identity crises, the novel creates identity slippages that contribute to the formation of a “generic

Arab.” Perhaps they will quibble with Laura Brown, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, and her assertion that "Momo's exuberant and often hilarious view of his world provides a surprising affirmation of the possibilities for wisdom from the perspective of innocence, and of the endurance of love and beauty in the face of suffering.” Or they might take a different approach. Perhaps they will point out that many great works of literature indulge in stereotypes for any number of effects, that literature’s function is not to provide a politically correct description of world affairs and that the decision of a Jewish writer to construct an Arab narrator is a literary novelty that warrants serious consideration and thought. They might ask why Gary felt it necessary to publish this novel under the pseudonym “Emil Ajar,” and go on to explore the interplay between the author’s own identity tensions and those manifested in his characters. Finally, they might explore the irony that when the book was first published, some critics considered the book anti-Semitic, while others considered it an authentic Arab work. (Claude Michel Cluny, writing in “Magazine littéraire,” opined that “under the good of government of Vichy, people would have been falling over themselves to give [The Life Before Us] an award.”) Regardless of which side of the debate students find themselves on, students will have succeeded in transforming oft-banal discussions of the summer reading book into opportunities for actual discourse and debate. If such occurrences in fact take place, they will hardly

detract from diversity at Cornell — they will affirm it. The true blow to diversity on this campus would come from accepting the suggestion that Arab and Muslim students are somehow incapable of reading a novel in which they do not find themselves represented. By asking how Arab and Muslim students are supposed to read such a novel, Professor Cheyfitz seems to suggest that finding oneself represented in a work should be a precondition for engaging with it. And yet, much of what makes diversity so valuable is that it allows all students to engage with ideas and people who represent differing viewpoints. That is, it allows students to engage with pre-

Nathaniel Rosen Bringing It Home cisely those viewpoints in which they do not find themselves represented. To suggest that we students are somehow incapable of reading texts that do not contain accurate representations of ourselves is not only misguided, it’s patronizing. More disheartening still, such an effort will detract from diversity at Cornell, not enhance it. Nathaniel Rosen is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences. He may be reached at Bringing it Home appears alternate Tuesdays this semester.

The Myth of Ethnic Harmony A

week ago today, a young Tibetan named Dorje set himself on fire and burned to death in Sichuan Province, China. It was the third Tibetan self-immolation in three days, and the 25th in the last year. It started with monks and nuns, though the protest has recently spread to laypeople. For the Chinese government, committed to the myth that China’s ethnic minorities live in content subservience to their benevolent Han Chinese masters, these protests are deeply problematic. Tibet is on fire, and its suffering demands to be reckoned with. What compels these Tibetans to burn themselves to death? Anyone asking that

increasingly push Mandarin Chinese onto students and discourage the Tibetan language. Buddhist monks and nuns are subjected to “Patriotic Education,” during which they are forced to pledge allegiance to Communism and renounce the Dalai Lama. The Chinese version of events is, of course, completely different, and more in line with the myth of ethnic harmony. Chinese officials claim that the self-immolations are not political protests symptomatic of widespread discontent with the Chinese occupation of Tibet, but rather acts of terrorism, the work of “outcasts, criminals and mentally ill people manipu-

Tom Moore What Even Is All This? question is met with two answers: the Tibetan answer and the Chinese answer. The Tibetan answer: The self-immolations are non-violent protests against the systematic eradication of Tibetan culture by the Chinese Empire. Since invading Tibet in 1951, Chinese forces have demolished thousands of Buddhist monasteries, temples and shrines, desecrated and burned hundreds of thousands of sacred Buddhist scriptures and massacred tens of thousands of Tibetan civilians. The atrocities committed, especially in the name of Mao’s so-called Cultural Revolution, are too numerous to describe here in detail. These days, the Chinese government goes about destroying Tibetan culture in more insidious ways. Its policies and the new Beijing-Lhasa railroad encourage Han Chinese to settle in Tibet, flooding the region with Chinese culture. Schools

lated by the exiled Dalai Lama.” All would be well in China if not for the machinations of outside agitators. This claim is premised upon a fundamentally different version of history from that told by the Tibetans. From the Chinese Communist perspective, in 1951 the People’s Liberation Army freed Tibet from the oppressive yoke of feudalism and ushered in a new era of economic prosperity and harmony. From that point on, Tibetans have been a happy (but non-threatening) part of the Chinese family. The Chinese myth of ethnic harmony is best encapsulated, not by the image of a Tibetan setting himself on fire, but rather by that of Han Chinese tourists splashing each other with buckets of water at an “ethnic theme park.” Ethnic theme parks are wildly popular among Han Chinese, the ethnic group

that makes up 96 percent of China’s burgeoning population. Here’s an example of how these theme parks work: Traditionally, the Dai people of Southwest China splash each other with water for the duration of one three-day festival every year. But in the Dai Minority Park, an ethnic theme park owned and operated by Han Chinese, every day is festival day. Busloads of Han Chinese come to ogle what the park advertises as the “warmest and sweetest Dai princesses” and participate in “traditional” water fights. The entertainers staffing these theme parks are sometimes actually members of the ethnic minority they are dressing up as, but they need not be. After they’re done experiencing the “authentic” cultures of ethnic minorities, the Han Chinese get back on their buses and return to the city. The myth of ethnic harmony has been reinforced: China is one big happy family, whose ethnic minorities prosper cheerfully under the benevolent stewardship of the Han. We saw the same myth being constructed in the 2008 Olympics, when Han Chinese children, dressed up as members of the 55 officially recognized ethnic minorities of China, carried a huge Chinese flag as part of the opening ceremony. Meanwhile, Tibet is on fire, burning for a day when the Tibetan people can once more speak their own language and practice their own religion. So what’s an Empire to do when its ethnic minorities don’t play along with the myth of ethnic harmony? In trying to understand how the Han Chinese Empire deals with this question, it may be fruitful to examine how the White American Empire deals with the same question. What do we do with the people who were on this land before us? Well, after the mass murder, biological warfare and forced relocation, we, like China, tried to systematically eradicate their culture. Starting in 1869 and continuing into the 1970s, over 100,000

Native American children were forced to attend government schools where Native customs, clothing and language were all banned, and students were forced to practice Christianity. Students in these schools also faced physical abuse, starvation, intense manual labor, sexual abuse and, in similar schools in Canada, medical experimentation and forced sterilization. These days, we, like China, use festivals, most notably Thanksgiving, to construct our own myth of ethnic harmony: America is one big happy family, whose ethnic minorities prosper cheerfully under the benevolent stewardship of the White Europeans. In one 2008 incident in California, schoolchildren dressed up as Native Americans and pilgrims for a Thanksgiving parade and festival, and actual Native Americans protested the event, holding signs that said, “Don’t Celebrate Genocide” and “You Are Not Honoring Anyone.” These protesters aren’t setting themselves on fire, but I think they’re sending a similar message, from the minority to the majority: Everything is not okay. We’ve had atrocities committed against us. We haven’t forgotten, and you can’t just make those atrocities go away. If you steal an entire continent and try to wipe out an entire people, you lose the right to claim ethnic harmony. In America, as in Chinaoccupied Tibet, the victims of Empire scream out in the midst of our festivals, “Murder! Murder!” Here in the American Empire, we’ve gotten pretty good at ignoring those screams. Who knows how long the Chinese Empire will be able to do the same.

Tom Moore is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences. He may be reached at What Even Is All This? appears alternate Tuesdays this semester.


8 | The Corne¬ Daily Sun | Tuesday, March 13, 2012

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Major Lazer Electrifies Barton Hall

ter and their band’s namesake, Major Lazer. Apparently, he was a General in the zombie wars in Jamaica who, after losing an arm, was fitted with a laser This past Sunday, on an unseasonably and tasked with protecting the world warm Ithaca evening, Major Lazer, the collec- from zombies, mummies and vampires. tive moniker for DJ’s Diplo and Switch’s joint The character often appears in promomusical venture rocked Barton Hall with an tional material and the occasional music entertaining and extremely high-energy show. video and is something completely During several songs, the floor was quite lit- unique to Major Lazer. It shows that the erally vibrating as bursts of reggae-infused group is pushing boundaries not only techno paired with pounding beats and more musically, but also with respect to multhan a few rap samples shook things up. timedia inclusion. Though the performance was surprisingly After a sparsely attended set by undersold, the irresistibly dance-inducing nonetheless talented opener, DJ A-Trak, mash-ups that the group delivered zealously brightly clothed and sunglass-sporting more than made up for the somewhat lacking concert-goers rushed toward the stage crowd size. to see the main attraction. The mountThe Diplo-Switch combo is not a new one ing excitement was palpable as whispers as both performers were producers on a string of “Major Lazer” ran through the now of hits including M.I.A.’s ubiquitous “Paper swelling crowd. About ten minutes Planes.” These past experiences are visible in later, in a markedly faster transition the duo’s seamless collaboration as Major than usual, Diplo was spotted filing out Lazer, successfully modernizing traditional to much applause along with a hype Jamaican reggae by injecting it with electronic man and two scantily clad and exceedinfluences. A distinguishing and often ingly flexible female backup dancers. unknown feature of the group, however, is the The group’s hype man was very active in elaborate backstory behind the cartoon charac- keeping the audience involved at all times. At one point, not far into the show, he heralded the call for volunteers to come up on stage and dance, fervently adding “No dudes, only girls!” In between songs the man would constantly initiate a call-and-response between the crowd along the lines of “I say major, you say Lazer” and at one point he requested that audiDANI NEUHARTH-KEUSCH / SUN SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHER BY LUCAS COLBERT-CARREIRO Sun Contributor

ence members get on each other’s shoulders. Though fun at first, his antics soon got tiring, and few people obliged his demands for jumping by the end of the show. Throughout the evening, there was a lot of excited chatter over what is arguably Major Lazer’s best-known song,“Pon de Floor,” and when it would be played. “I bet they’ll wait till the end since it’s the best” said one pessimistic spectator. On several occasions, opening beats similar to that of “Pon de Floor” would cause people to perk up in anticipation, only to be disappointed seconds later. When the song’s infinitely catchy and danceable hook was finally heard, a united cry of recognition rang out. As energy levels hit a maximum, the now very sweaty crowd swayed to the beat, yelling their own, mostly unintelligible versions of

the heavily Jamaican-accented lyrics. In addition to several of their originals, Major Lazer remixed some familiar hits such as Tyga’s “Rack City” and Harlem up-andcomer A$AP Rocky’s dreamy and inexplicably smooth track “Peso.” These two cases coupled with the mayhem of “Pon de Floor” and the very well-executed final song,“Original Don” were powerful representations of the group’s ability to artfully combine current popular genres unconventionally with reggae. The outcome seen here was unanimously loud, different, catchy and a whole lot of fun. Lucas Colbert-Carreiro is a freshman in the School of Industiral and Labor Relations. He can be reached at

Expecting the Unexpected BY KATHERINE CARRENO Sun Contributor

This is what the Locally Grown Dance Festival offers: five days of dance including performances from solo artists and dance troupes hailing from both Cornell and Ithaca College, as well as some out of town dancers, and some manner of cohesion to tie it all together, at least this is what the festival pamphlet advertises. Cohesion is difficult thing to promise when you consider that performances included a mixture of classical and modern dance, salsa, hip-hop, belly dance and abstract dance. The festival’s tagline is “Expect the unexpected,” which would be the natural frame of thought considering the vast array of performances and artists at different mastery levels. Unfortunately, this is only a review of one night of performance, therefore I have not benefited from witnessing the true cohesiveness of the festival as a whole, and the element may have eluded me entirely. One night however should suffice in giving you a taste of the kinds of performances that Locally Grown has to share. This past Friday’s performance showcased the intermediary act of the Breaking series, a three-part performance from a Cornellian dance troupe which incorporates the same live-playing classical music of Olivier Messiaen, Arvo Pärt, and Astor Piazzolla with occasional “breaks” of recorded music to add a totally new style of dance into the performance. This week it was Breaking Bette, and the soft, fluid motions of classical music were broken with the fast and severe sounds of the Street Beat Drum Corps, the likes of which inspired refreshingly young and energetic hiphop-inspired dance moves. Bryon Suber, Festival Director and Senior Lecturer, Dance, told me that each segment of the Breaking series integrated the same live classical music


but altered the recorded music for each subsequent show. It’s a great way to spice up each performance and add variation to the sounds of piano and cello. The next performances followed a similar route of briefly mixing musical genres and songs. It was a showcase of binary oppositions: classical and modern, fast and slow, constructed and deconstructed. The most peculiar was the Groundwork performance by Jacob Slominski, who somersaulted in the same spot for approximately ten minutes. The sound of his feet landing on the ground set the tempo for this music-less performance. Faster and faster he tumbled overhead, his frustration growing more audible with the rhythmic pounding of his feet. Finally, when it seemed he could somersault not longer, he stopped, and the audience clapped. Visiting Korean dancer and teacher Bo Kyung gave us the most emotional performance in Unquenchable (thirst), a dance that definitely reflected some of the aforementioned contrasts. One minute she’d be artfully moving her body in a ballet-like arch and the next she would throw her body on the floor not ungracefully, but with a quick brusqueness that was unexpected from such a fluid beginning. Just as quickly, however, she would elegantly pick herself off the floor into a somewhat upright position, only to be forcefully swayed once more by some seemingly unseen force. Hers was a dance that signified suffering and internal torment, as well as mastery of her body’s movements in dance. While I believe that the Locally Grown Dance Festival must be viewed in its entirety in order to understand the true flow from act to act and what ties all of them together, one day of performances was enough to understand that Locally Grown is complex assortment of acts. Recurring musical numbers with remixed moves and bits of intergenre mingling don’t really tell me what I’m supposed to understand—what is linking these acts together. I’m look-

ing for meaning in each of these dances and trying to link them together; yet, dance is a form of communication that’s not always readily understandable to an onlooker. The process of understanding dance is almost like learning a new language. One has to spend time watching a certain dance or a COURTESY OF SCHWARTZ CENTER group of dancers to discern their movements and understand what they are trying to communicate to the viewer. Modern dance, with its graceful and abstract movements, can be famously hard to decode. Maybe there is no meaning. Maybe the dancers just dance according to the natural response of their bodies, as I noted the dance troupe in Breaking Bette was oft to do. Whatever the case the movements and musical choices showcased in Locally Grown were definitely “unexpected.” Katherine Carreno is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences. She can be contacted at



Tuesday, March 13, 2012 | The Corne¬ Daily Sun | 9

Return to the Heart of Darkness

ver a century has passed since Joseph Conrad wrote Heart of Darkness. Wars have come and gone, technology has advanced at an unbelievable rate and Western culture at large has undergone a radical transformation. A reasonable person might assume that the West has also progressed beyond Conrad’s white-man-knows-best narrative. Sadly, this is not the case. Somehow, in 2012, we’re still buying into reductive colonial views of the African continent. Whether it’s Kony 2012’s oversimplified account of Ugandan politics or American discomfort with the Arab Spring, the Western world clearly has a bad case of postcolonial paternalism. This is not to say that Westerners can’t make positive changes in poverty-stricken countries, but we need to stop using Africa and its people as a backdrop for the white man’s quest for self-discovery and knowledge. And yet Lavinia Currier’s latest film Oka!,does exactly that. Based on a memoir by Louis Sarno, Oka! seeks to portray the idyllic coexistence of an American academic and the pygmy people that he studies. Instead, we get an exasperatingly messianic scholar who overshadows a fascinating culture. Squandering the beauty of the landscape and the culture of the Bayaka people, Oka! ultimately defeats itself with fragmented plotlines and a stifling sense of self-importance. Despite a failing liver, Larry (Kris Marshall), a tedious ethnomusicologist form New Jersey, returns to Central Africa to live with the Bayaka people whose music has long entranced him. Seeking the mythical molimo, “the holy grail of pygmy music,” he finds his forest-dwelling friends threatened by a logging company and a pair of classic villains. Parading through the jungle armed with fancy recording equipment and almost no personality, the lanky protagonist is less than compelling. While his sincerity is initially endearing, it soon

becomes a far more appropriative sense of superiority. At one point, he tells a pair of tourists he is from the Bayaka village and sneers when they ask him if he is a member of the Peace Corps. Oka!, however, is not all bad. The music is undeniably enthralling. While Larry may bore the audience within the first ten minutes, we can certainly understand why he’s so drawn to the pygmies. Their passionate music and vibrant humor are testament to their engaging culture, and yet Currier’s Kurtzian tale allows these people to serve as little more than scenery for Larry’s emotional and intellectual journey. In fact, Sataka — a Bayaka mystical joker and by far the bestwritten and -acted character — is the only pygmy whose personality and motives we really get to know. The film begs us to marvel at Larry’s ability to speak the Bayaka language, urges us to Cornell laugh at the other Westerners who do not understand the culture and compels us to Cinema acknowledge his nobility of spirit. Rarely do we see the Bayakas on their own terms; in this film, their only purpose is to prop up the righteous music scholar. While Oka! provides an excellent showcase of Bayaka music, this alone cannot overcome its many other shortcomings. Postcolonial critiques aside, Oka! suffocates itself in a web of fragmented story arcs and its own sense of self-wonder. About an hour in, the plot makes a major detour as Larry, Sataka and the rest of the carefree Bayakas frolic in the forest. While it’s an appealing and pleasant image, the filmmakers seem to be so enamored with the setting and subject material that all sense of story is lost. The plot structure is barely elucidated through a series of hackneyed plot points and unorigi-

Gina Cargas


nal characters. From the seductive “exotic” girl to the greedy corporate pig, Oka!’s cast of characters is far from inventive. In the end, Oka! is not uninteresting. In fact, for the majority of the film, the audience remains absorbed by — if not the protagonist or the muddled plot — the cultural and cinematographic landscape. The film even has a few nuances, such as the recurring opposing forces of industrial noise and musical sound. Ultimately, however, Oka! finds itself choking on a lethal blend of clichéd plot points, uneven storylines and the white man’s burden that Joseph Conrad knew so well. So, in many ways, Oka! seems like a rough draft. Perhaps the screenwriters needed a few extra rounds of workshop or a lesson in Western privilege. Either way, Oka! remains a frustrating jumble of themes and ideas that never crystallizes into the gripping and poignant tale it had the potential to be. Gina Cargas is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences. She can be reached at



guess I’ll have to start off this column by stating the obvi- my last column, I discussed how we demonize ous: Yes, Joseph Kony is an awful, awful human being. the enemy and, in turn, desecrate our own His crimes against mankind deserve the highest punish- humanity. There are no moral absolutes. There ment within law. All the children he has brainwashed is good and bad in everything, yin and yang. If deserve to be free and enjoy their childhood in peace and Kony is nothing but the Spawn of Satan, it innocence. I find these truths to be self-evident. teaches us nothing about how to build a future Nonetheless, I am morally and ideologically opposed to free of terror, not just in a poor Ugandan vilInvisible Children (IC), the group bringing Kony’s crimes to lage but here at home, as well. the public light through their viral video triumph Kony This simplification of complex issues appar2012, and, more crucially, those blindly backing them. ently makes it easier for the masses to swallow. Countless criticisms have already surfaced. Infamous There is that grotesque scene where the filmposts like Tumblr’s “Visible Children” all hone in on the maker, Jason Russell, presents a picture of facts. I take little stock in them. Let us look past IC asking Kony to his photogenic son, Gavin. In the span you to buy their $30 box of posters and bracelets when less of but 60 seconds, a deadly 25-year conflict is than 40 percent of that money goes to charity. Or their reduced to the comprehension of a little child. unequivocal championing of the Ugandan Army, accused “We should stop him,” Gavin declares with themselves of human rights abuses not unlike that of Kony’s authority. A child should not understand these Lord’s Resistance tensions. Not to Army. Or the fact preserve any youthful innothat said LRA has cence, but because their mind long left Uganda cannot emotionally comprewith little proof hend the magnitude and of Kony’s mere scope — spanning more than existence for six just one sole belligerent — of years. Or the realsuch political violence. You’ve The Third ization that, to likely heard about the get to Kony, you Holocaust from a young age. Man may have to kill But when did you really get it? the child soldiers Russell and his team manwe seek to save. ufactured this well-edited film with a strictly American audiNo, I am going to focus on you. First, thanks for killing ence in mind. The donkey-elephant political imagery and the English language. I witnessed literally hundreds of sta- Mumford & Sons atop a privileged family finding cruelty tuses and tweets linking to the video, proclaiming, “This will beyond their backyard … with a side of light African sufferchange your life.” Really, it will change my life? I had ing. Our social media users eat it up. But what do they do? absolutely no foreknowledge that the world, and especially Change their profile picture for a day, “like” the IC page and Africa, was filled with genocide and suffering, and to this donate their parents’ money to where Russell told them. It is day, no less! To paraphrase Louis C.K.: “What’s going to first-grade slacktivism for an idealist age in which people are happen on your wedding day, or when your first child is unwilling to walk outside without their iPhones. born?” Because you already wasted ‘change your life’ on The IC has limited its range away from those who can actualHelp 2. ly find a way, some way, to take action. This gooey sob story Annoying Facebook Girl is surely still poring over the would not appeal to the Middle East, to the revolutionaries life-changing exposure of that video, a night or six after the who wielded social media to its first significant application fact, I am sure. And don’t forget the “you’re heartless if you during the Arab Spring. Besides, they have their own probdon’t watch this” mold. Thanks for letting me know a little lems to deal with. more about myself. The ending of City Lights and the death All this boils down to a phrase everyone has been tossing of my grandfather never convinced me there was anything in around: It’s to raise awareness! Okay, you have “raised awarethere! ness.” Everyone knows about it. What now? “Cover the Such hyperbole can breed potential violence. These night” on April 20? (Am I the only who noticed that date?) posters throw Kony’s face next to bin Laden and Hitler. In I can tell you our cities’ sanitation workers won’t care for it.

Zachary Zahos


No revolution is fought by the majority. That gut reaction of parading the streets upon the death of a tyrant (ditto bin Laden) is how we act. Do not mess with the masses. We lose sight of what is true and go all scorched earth on your ass. Or, more likely, we just do nothing. The passionate minority brings change through integrity and sacrifice — at least they try to. You can say this video has inspired some to join such a cause for all the right reasons, but I question why it took a slick YouTube sensation to find the generosity in their hearts to finally take action. Now, these last words are mine only, and I do not expect any decent person to agree with me on this point. Okay, let’s say Joseph Kony is caught, through the methods outlined by IC, and decades of tyranny come to an end through the will of the masses. Say all that good stuff happens and college idealism has its day. What will be of Facebook, Twitter and reddit, the websites that championed this cause? What social media did — in the users’ minds, at least — worked. Will causes for aid to every exploited people flood the News Feeds? Will petitions to “pledge my support" by subscribing to a Listserv fill every tweet? What will happen to my havens that once housed cat pictures and in-jokes? Will I seriously have to sift through updates composed by an army of brainwashed children to find ... uh ... wait a minute. WE ARE TOO LA— Zachary Zahos '15 died last night in a freak attack by a blue songbird that crashed through his dorm window. Reportedly, his last words were, "Go get 'em, Gavin." Words of condolence and goodwill can be sent to


10 THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Los Angeles Times Daily Crossword Puzzle Edited by Rich Norris and Joyce Nichols Lewis

ACROSS 1 Pointer’s pronoun 5 Supermarket stripes: Abbr. 9 Poe’s middle name 14 Hand-on-theBible utterance 15 Lassie 16 Take care of 17 Old-style bottle opener 19 “Are not!” retort 20 Afghanistan’s capital 21 Honoree of a D.C. monument at 1964 Independence Ave. 23 Treats, as squeaks 24 Yankee with a record 18 World Series home runs 28 Pen point 31 Bullfight shout 32 Puzzle (out), in slang 33 Idle of “Life of Brian” 35 Preschool basics 38 Charges at some booths 41 1995 Woody Allen film with a Greek chorus 44 Actor Davis 45 Vim and vigor 46 “__ dash of ...”: recipe words 47 Courtroom entry 49 Top-row PC key 51 Approximate fig. 52 Highest British military rank 57 Both Chaneys 58 Beverage cooler 59 Lindsay of “Herbie: Fully Loaded” 63 Connector with a slash 65 Cry evoked by the first parts of the answers to 17-, 24-, 41- and 52Across? 68 Traffic problem 69 Wife of Osiris 70 Racing’s Grand __ 71 Fruit-filled treats 72 Deck chair wood 73 Deck chair piece

DOWN 36 EMT’s procedure 54 Nail the test 1 Sound heard 37 Draws back, as in 55 Della of around the clock fear “Touched By an 2 Sarcastic joke 39 Former Fords Angel” response 40 Airplane 56 Aerobatic 3 “... three men in assignment maneuvers __” 42 Ready for a drive 60 Throw 4 Tap idly with 43 __ Hashanah 61 Sri Lanka locale one’s fingers 48 Friend from France 62 First in line 5 “I’m not eating 50 Unruffled 64 Rotation meas. that!” 6 Dental care suffix 52 Scruggs’s partner 66 Korean 27-Down 53 Ancient Aegean manufacturer 7 Double Stuf stuff region 67 Look for answers 8 On the q.t. 9 Comparative ANSWER TO PREVIOUS PUZZLE: words 10 Citrus-flavored refresher 11 Change the subject, perhaps 12 Lagoon surrounder 13 Oater omen 18 Ad-writing award 22 Canada hwy. distances 25 Modeling material 26 Skewered fare 27 Garage occupant 28 Animated clownfish 29 Van Gogh flower 30 Spare-no-cost type 34 Hangs loose 03/13/12

By Jeff Chen (c)2012 Tribune Media Services, Inc.


Mr. Gnu

Up to My Nipples

Sun Sudoku


Puzzle # 4 days ’til spring break

Fill in the empty cells, one number in each, so that each column, row, and region contains the numbers 1-9 exactly once. Each number in the solution therefore occurs only once in each of the three “directions,” hence the “single numbers” implied by the puzzle’s name. (Rules from /Sudoku)

I Am Going to Be Small

by Jeffrey Brown


by Garry Trudeau

Don’t let the rain get you down. You can always count onThe Sun.

Travis Dandro

by William Moore ’12 and Jesse Simons grad

The Corne¬ Daily Sun

THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012 11

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12 THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012

THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012 13


NulleTalks of Singing, Red Prepares for Outdoor Season His World Travels TRACK

Continued from page 16


Continued from page 14

been fun.” Even though he never had the opportunity to meet Bush in person, Nulle has plenty of other tales to tell. He has visited about 25 countries and has stories from all of them. On one particular trip, Nulle went to Israel, before spending time in Egypt. While in Egypt, he stayed at the famous Mena House near the Great Pyramid — a hotel frequented by visiting dignitaries. “I was in Egypt on the Feast of Eid al-Fitr, which is the end of Ramadan,” he said. “People can start eating at night, and the next day Ramadan’s over so they don’t have to fast during the day, so everyone was out. I went walking that night. This woman whose father worked at the hotel, we were talking and I was singing a little bit and she encouraged me to dance. … The people were sitting on the lower stones of the Great Pyramid began getting into it — clapping and singing — and I was dancing. It was really a high point of the trip.” However, during his stay in Egypt, Nulle became sick and returned to Israel. “I ended up back in Israel on their Independence Day, which was really nice,” he recalled. “It felt like going home. It felt like the Fourth of July.” From Israel, he traveled to Greece using money he raised by collecting cans. “I probably never would have gotten to Greece but I lost this job teaching — I used to teach skating,” Nulle said. “So I began collecting cans. You know, five cents each. And that was the difference between being able to extend my trip to go to Greece. If I hadn’t collected those cans, I wouldn’t have gotten to Greece.” Though he is a world-traveled man, not all of Nulle’s adventures took place abroad. Some occurred much closer to Ithaca, where he grew up. “There was this opera place in New York City. It wasn’t quite on the northwest corner of 110th and Broadway, but it was the next shop up,” Nulle said. “It was a combination of a local bar and a world famous place where opera singers came. They had this woman that used to play for Joseph Stalin and then she came over here and lived an entirely different life. So one time I asked the impresario, I said, ‘You know, I’ve got a pretty good voice, not a great voice,’ but he actually put me on and I got up and sang. It was really great. I sang this song called ‘Fields of Athenry,’ which is one of my favorite songs that I sing at a lot of places. … I love to sing.” In 2009, Nulle accepted the University’s retirement package; however, he has since continued to drive the ice resurfacing machine — which is not actually a Zamboni, but rather made by Zamboni’s rival, Olympia. Officially, he is now a temporary University employee, according to associate athletic director Anita Brenner. According to Nulle, he has since begun working almost a full-time schedule again, filling in after another rink employee left.

“[When he retired] I probably said something like ‘I would hope we could find ways to keep him around driving the Zamboni because he added so much to the atmosphere in the rink,’” said Vice President for Student and Academic Services Susan Murphy ’73. Nulle was markedly absent at hockey games this past fall semester, as he was unable to drive the Zamboni after injuring himself in a fall at Lynah Rink. When he returned for the first game of the spring semester against Dartmouth on Jan. 20, the Lynah Faithful greeted Nulle with a loud ovation. “That was a very nice welcome back,” Nulle said. “When they reacted like that, that was nice, very nice. Very much appreciated by me.” Joseph Niczky can be reached at

good training in to come out strong for the outdoor season.” According to assistant coach Kevin Thompson, the trip gives him and the other coaches valuable time to spend with their athletes, both as a team and individually. “The thing I like about the trip is it allows us as coaches to really connect with the [athletes],” he said. “It gives me a lot of down time to talk to the kids individually and it gets us really ready for the outdoor season. It allows us to spend a lot more time together.” For some of the athletes, like Mozia, the trip not only gives him the chance to spend a lot of time with his teammates, but it’s a chance to travel somewhere unknown. “I can’t wait,” he said. “I’ve never been to California, so it’s going to be a great experience. I get to spend a week with my teammates training. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

According to Johnson, the transition to the outdoor season is her favorite. “I love going to outdoors because you add the javelin, you add the discus, you swap out the [weight throw] for the [hammer throw],” she said. “Those are the events where you throw the furthest, and it’s really fun to see things fly far. I think anyone would agree with that.”

it to his athletes for how hard they work, and said he is hoping for them to keep up their hard work and most importantly, stay healthy. “We work so hard during the year, and I’m very proud of the group that I work with,” he said. “The biggest thing that I’m hoping to do is keep them all healthy. When we get to the [Heps] meet, if my guys are

“Staying consistent is really big in the throwing events.” Megan Johnson When asked what she was looking for her athletes to work on the most for the outdoor season, Johnson said that the focus is for them to be more consistent. “Staying consistent is really big in the throwing events,” she said. “Once you become consistent, then the distances begin to increase.” Thompson gave a lot of cred-

healthy, I know that we’re going to do very well.” The Red will compete in two meets while in California, at the Northridge Invitational hosted by Cal State Northridge on March 17 and at the Irvine Spring Break Invite hosted by UC Irvine on March 24. Juan Carlos Toledo can be reached at

14 THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012



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Caesar’s chariot | “Zamboni Dave” Nulle has made dressing up in costume a tradition at hockey games in Lynah for almost 40 years.

Dave Nulle: Lynah’s Favorite Character By JOE NICZKY Sun Senior Writer

Fans crowd into Lynah Rink each weekend during hockey season, knowing two things are for certain. There will always be a great — or sometimes not so great — game of hockey, and “Zamboni Dave” will be dressed in something that is sure to make everyone laugh. While his costumes are as legendary as some of the players who have graced Lynah’s ice, there is more to Dave Nulle that last Saturday night’s Caesar outfit. Nulle has officially worked for Cornell since 1971; however, he said that he has actually worked for the University longer than that. “I just happened here on the right date,” he said. “If they were hiring chicken farmers, my life would have been totally different.” For most of his more than 40 years as the driver of Lynah Rink’s ice resurfacer, Nulle has worn costumes during the games — a tradition which has made him well-known among student fans. The Faithful may have a thief to thank for the tradition. “I was driving [the Zamboni] out there and I was wearing this hat and it was sort of one of those Russian trooper hats — big thing with flaps that you can tie up on top — and someone reached over and grabbed it off my head and the whole rink began chanting ‘Give it back! Give it back!’” Nulle laughed. “I think that sort of gave this idea to the person from the Student Agencies who was there and he came down afterwards and said ‘If we lent you a tuxedo for the Harvard game, would you wear it?’” Nulle said he soon realized that he could use costumes to promote the ballroom dance class that he was teaching at the time in Willard Straight Hall. “I thought ‘Well, a good way to publicize [my class] is to wear something like this, and that’s what I wore,” Nulle said, pointing at an old photo of himself that he clipped from The Sun. “It’s sort of a royal robe and I think it’s a black ... trooper’s hat. They said it was a medieval costume — The Sun. They didn’t quite know what it was either, but it was my way of publicizing it. … The fans liked it and I enjoyed it, so I began wearing stuff.” Nulle began accumulating new outfits everywhere he went, and says he now owns over 300 hats, which he mixes and matches with different costumes to create new looks. He bought some costumes at a local costume shop on Stewart Ave. that has since gone out of business. He said that many of the hats have stories behind them, like the matador hat that he bought in Plaza Mayor in Madrid, and a hat he bought at an Afghan shop on Luquer Street in New York City. “[The hat from the Afghan shop] was one of my most expensive hats, but I broke [it,]” Nulle said. “It was a hat worn by a male at Turkestan while he was dancing at a wedding in Turkestan. So when this couple came back — he was teaching in one of the Gulf states and he had gotten married the day before he left and so when he came back I had the hat and I said ‘Okay, you’re going to wear this.’ So he was the first one to wear it while we danced, and we did sort of a … Kurdish dance … I was the second person to wear it.” However, Nulle is not only defined by his legendary costumes and a Zamboni. An experienced dancer and widely traveled man, Nulle has a plethora of unique experiences to share. “There’s more to me than just the ice man,” he said. From getting an invitation to dinner with President George W. Bush to dancing at the foot of the Great Pyramid, Nulle leads an interesting life. “I gave [Bush] some advice … One of the things that I remember was how to deal with the media in a way that wasn’t … whining. To deal with it in a way that says ‘Look, the press has a responsibility, and the American people are the ones who really lose when the press doesn’t report the things,’” Nulle said. “In that particular campaign [in 2000] I was able to call right through to the National Republican Committee … They were the only persons who ever really listened to me.” As a thank you for his help, Nulle received an invitation to 2001’s “The President’s Dinner, A Congressional Salute” — a black tie and black boots event. Although Nulle could not attend, he still received Christmas cards from George and Laura Bush every year for the rest of Bush’s presidency. “I would have loved to have gone, but I had an operation at that time,” he said. “I did have the black tie and the boots. It would have been See NULLE page 13

THE CORNELL DAILY SUN | Tuesday, March 13, 2012 15



Cornell Falls to Brown, Looks Ahead to Nationals By REBECCA VELEZ Sun Staff Writer

Cornell struggled this weekend against Brown, losing on Sunday in what was the team’s lowest scoring meet of the season. It was only the second time in 15 years that Brown has defeated Cornell, a mark that added to the team’s overall disappointment. “It was our lowest scoring meet of the year,” said head coach Paul Beckwith. “Two judges were throwing out scores lower than we’ve seen all year.”

Cornell and Brown recorded their lowest scores of the season in the meet; however, the Bears were ultimately able to overtake the Red, 189.300-187.200. “It’s hard when people on the team do good things, and don’t get rewarded for it,” Beckwith said. The scores for the meet were determined by previous Olympic judges, which Beckwith said he believes might have affected the outcome of the competition. “They’re used to judging at the international level, which is more harsh,” he said. “They were more likely to take the maximum deductions.”

Several members of the team gave solid performances, claiming top finishes in two of the four events, although the team, as a whole, lost. Senior Tiffany Chen was an individual winner on vault, posting a 9.750, while junior McKenna Archer was not far behind, posting a 9.650 which placed her second overall. “Chen and [junior McKenna] Archer both had one of their best performances on vault all year,” Beckwith said. “The scores were not indicative of that … but they did really well.” Senior Melanie Standridge placed first on beam with a 9.775, with sophomore Melanie Jorgensen not far behind, placing second overall with a 9.550. Sophomore Lexi Schupp placed third on bars with a team high 9.550. Sophomore Mackenzie Sato gave the Red its top performance on floor, 9.575, which tied her for fifth overall. The team will head into two competitions over spring break, the first coming this Sunday at Kent State, where, according to Beckwith, the Red hopes to score well in order to claim a spot in the 2012 USAG Collegiate Nationals. The matchup will be a challenging one, as the Red has lost all four competitions against Kent State previously. The team, however, is optimistic about its chances. “We’re looking forward to Kent State,” Beckwith said. “They went to the NCAA championships last year, and are a strong team. It will be a good crowd there, and should be an exciting meet.” The following weekend Cornell will compete in the ECAC Championships in Philadelphia, Pa., where the coach hopes the Red will be able to defend its title. “ECAC is always a big meet for us,” Beckwith said. “We won last year for the first time.” Cornell is preparing to have several team members qualify for the USA Collegiate National Championships that will take place at the very end of the season. “We will see how that pans out in the next couple of meets,” Beckwith said. “I think we’ll start back on a better track this weekend.”


Scoring struggles | Sophomore Mackenzie Sato was the Red’s top performer on floor against Brown, posting a 9.575 which tied her for fifth overall.

Rebecca Velez can be reached at

C.U. Looks to Start Fresh SWIMMING

Continued from page 16

that he believes improvements can be made. “I am still positive about the team, but it is our job, as coaches, to get our team to a higher level,” Lucia said. “It was a good experience to learn and find out where we have to go as a team.” Lucia shared a similarly positive outlook on the men’s season, even

problems with the team, but I think the competitiveness in the league was extremely high, revealing the great depth in the Ivy League.” “We are not going to turn it all around next year,” Lucia said. “There is a good foundation and a good work ethic among the base of guys returning next year. I feel we can make strides forward. We are at a bad point right now and we just have to work out of it.”

“I am really excited for the team next year ... I am confident ... in the leadership of the younger swimmers.”

though they had one of the worst seasons in recent history. “I do not have any negative things to say about anyone on the team,” Lucia said. “It comes down to one word — recruitment. I have to address that as the head coach and improve on what kind of talent we are bringing in.” According to Lucia, the men have never finished in last place at the Ivy League Championships nor have they gone winless in a season for over 40 years. Only one school record was set this year at the Ivies by sophomore Phillip Truong in the 3-meter boards. Sophomore Harry Harpham was the only Red swimmer to advance to a final in the three day meet in the 200 butterfly. Lucia noted that he thought Harpham was one of the most consistent swimmers all year. “The league got really fast this year,” said senior Julian Chan. “I do not think there were a lot of


Surpassing expectations | Sophomore Nik Feldman was the leading scorer for the Red with eleven

Julian Chan

goals against Texas A&M on Saturday at the Oxley Equestrian Center.

Some of the men who stepped up this season, including Truong, Harpham, freshman Eric May and sophomore Henry Scott, will assume leadership roles for next year. The Red will lose seven seniors, including Jake Sangren and Kevin Brazitis, who have had four years filled with consistent and successful performances for the Red. “I am really excited for the team next year,” Chan said. “I am confident in the recruits coming up and in the leadership abilities of some of the younger swimmers. This season was a good learning experience and the only way to go is up.” Over 240 days remain until the next swimming season begins, then the Red will test its talent against the highly competitive teams in the Ivy League once again. Scott Eckl can be reached at

Red Hopes for Northeast Regional Title POLO

Continued from page 16

communication may have made up for the team’s choppiness in the first half. “[The] first half was very choppy and not our normal clean playing style; we were just rushing ourselves,” the senior captain said. “[Amanda] was calling more plays from behind, which is usually a role Kailey or I will take on, so I think that one of the reasons we were so successful during the first half when we may not have necessarily been playing as well was because she stepped up and helped us out there, too.” According to Hoffman, Texas A&M had a similar

playing style to Virginia, who the women lost to last week. “They play [in a] very similar style to UVA — they’re very open, they run very quickly,” she said. “I think it was good that we were able to get back in that same situation and utilize the opportunities we missed at UVA and actually make them count for something.” The men’s and women’s most formidable opponent in the regional tournament will be Connecticut. The game against Texas A&M may have offered the squads the preparation they will need for the upcoming matchup against the Huskies. The Red returns to action in the USPA Northeast Intercollegiate Regionals,

which start on March 29. “[UConn and A&M] both have three solid players capable of scoring goals,” Feldman said. “It was a confidence boost for us to play that kind of team and win.” Feldman said that the team resolved some trust issues that have been reoccurring concerns on the field this season and the Red is looking ahead to the rest of the season. “We’re building on trusting each other more, and it’s something we have to maintain,” he said. “As this game shows, when we trust each other, it works well and yields results.” Andrea Sielicki can be reached at


The Corne¬ Daily Sun




Blair Now No. 9 in U.S. for High Jump By JUAN CARLOS TOLEDO Sun Staff Writer

The indoor season for the men’s and women’s track and field teams came to an end over the weekend at the NCAA Finals in Boise, Idaho. Representing the Red at the meet were two of the team’s most accomplished underclassmen, sophomore Montez Blair in the high jump and freshman Stephen Mozia in the shot put. Megan Johnson, assistant coach, said she was most impressed by being surrounded by the best athletes in the nation on the collegiate level. “Being there and being able to see the best athletes from all the colleges across the U.S. was pretty exciting,” she said. “It was a great event.” Clearing a height of 7-1.5, Blair finished ninth in the country in the high jump — a strong finish for a Cornell athlete who still has two more years of eligibility in indoor track. Blair said he enjoyed being relatively unknown in a field with so many talented, well-known athletes. “I loved it,” he said. “Being there with so many highly ranked athletes, who already have their name out there. I’m new to this, so this was my first time to have my name really out there and compete against guys from really highly ranked schools.” Always a competitor, Blair said he realizes that when an athlete is given an opportunity, he must continue to show how much he wants to excel. The sophomore said he is using his finish at NCAAs as motivation heading into the outdoor season. “You have to perform when you have the opportunity,” he said. “I went out there, I did my best, but it just wasn’t enough for that day. Outdoor, it’ll be a different story. I’ll make sure I train 10 times harder.”


Far reaches | The Red culminated its indoor season during this past weeked with both sophomores Montez Blair and Stephen Mozia competing in the NCAA Championships and coming in ninth and sixteenth respectively.

With a throw of 56-11.25, Mozia finished his indoor rookie season sixteenth in the the country in the shot put. In a field of so many other strong competitors — many of which were upperclassmen — Mozia said he felt the pressure. “I felt really small compared to everyone else,” he said. “But, it was a good experience seeing that many great athletes.” Both Mozia and Blair said they enjoyed traveling to the NCAAs, where they enjoyed some of the perks of competing in such an important meet. “[There was] a huge banquet, and there were a lot of awards given out,” Blair said. “That was good. There was a

party for all the athletes after the [meet] was over on Saturday.” Cornell now turns to the outdoor season, as always eyeing an outdoor Heps title. Aiding the Red in its transition from the indoor to the outdoor season is the Red’s annual trip to California, which offers the athletes a chance to train and compete in nice weather, according to sophomore jumper Dan Scott. “We go every year in the Spring,” he said. “It’s a good chance to get training in good weather. It’s primarily a training trip — we take some guys out there and get some really See TRACK page 13


C.U. Sweeps Texas A&M


needed something to build momentum on,” he said. The Aggies scored the first goal of Cornell had a double win weekend the men’s game, but the Red claimed in Oxley Equestrian Center on Friday the lead from the second chukker, and Saturday, as both the women’s and going into the half with a six goal lead the men’s polo teams defeated Texas over A&M. Only in the third chukker A&M. The women ran past the Aggies did the Red slightly falter, allowing the with a seven goal win, 18-11, while the Aggies to score six goals, while Cornell men took an early lead to beat A&M, only tallied three. 22-16. “We want to keep a certain pace, The women (9-5) came off a week we lost in one of the chukkers, and of rest when they faced A&M on what was good is we lost in the midFriday night. In the first chukker, dle but were able to pick it back up in despite a mentally shaky start, the Red the end of the game. It’s nice to know took a four goal lead. Senior captain Ali we could rebound by the end,” Hoffman said the team had some trou- Feldman said. ble quickly settling down into the At halftime for the women, sophogame. more Elizabeth 11 LeBow was substiTEXAS A&M “We were overreacting to 18 tuted for senior CORNELL (W) things, which is Amanda Stern. not unusual for The Aggies tied 16 T EXAS A&M us, but usually the Red in goals 22 during the third CORNELL (M) we get in control of it faster,” she chukker, with said. “We didn’t get there till right both teams tallying three. However, before halftime, that was sort of a chal- Cornell finished strong, limiting A&M lenge for us in the first half. Once we to three additional goals in the fourth finally got there, it was our very clean chukker, while the Red added five. and regular playing style.” By halftime, Sophomore Kailey Eldredge led the Cornell had increased its lead to 11-5. team with 11 points. The Cornell men’s polo team (8-6) “We were working really hard to be also had a successful weekend, which ahead of the ball,” LeBow said. “Fourth the squad believes got them back on chukker was the best chukker by being track before regional play begins, ahead of the play.” according to sophomore Nik Feldman, Hoffman said that the team played who led the team with 11 goals in better in the second half than the first, Friday’s game. even though the score board was rela“We felt really good [about the tively equal between both halves. Strong win], we definitely knew we needed a win going into the break; we knew we See POLO page 15 Sun Staff Writer


Rough bout | Cornell suffered a tough loss in the Ivy League Championships this past weekend as the team placed eigth with only sophomore flyer Harry Harpham advancing to the finals in the 200 butterfly.


Cornell Places Last at Ivies By SCOTT ECKL Sun Staff Writer

Although, record-wise, the season might appear less than successful, the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams reflected on the 2011-12 campaign in a positive light. The men (1-7, 0-7 Ivy League) and the women (2-6, 1-6) continued to fight throughout the season, despite poor records, giving strong performances at the final race of the season — the Ivy League Championships. Both teams placed last; however, in the men’s meet 15 of the Red’s 19 swimmers set personal bests and in the women’s meet four school records were broken — three by freshman Meredith Drummond. Drummond broke the school records in the 200 and 400 IM races, as well as the 200

breaststroke at the Ivies. Junior Jessie Holley has just broke her own Cornell record in the 200 breast prior to Drummond’s swim; however, she was later surpassed by Drummond by nearly two seconds. Despite the multiple record-breaking efforts, the women failed to overtake Brown — who the Red defeated in the regular season dual-meet action — for seventh place. “We had some good signs in the second half of the year after beating Colgate and Brown,” said head coach Joe Lucia. “We just did not have the kind of depth you need in the league.” Lucia also noted that he is positive regarding how the team performed and handled themselves throughout the year, emphasizing See SWIMMING page 15


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