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FREE | Take one Week of February 1, 2012 | Vol. 37, Iss 7



The Independent Student Newspaper of Fairfield University The Reflection of Fairfield

Anonymous Vandal Strikes Claver Racial Slurs Carved into Plaque in Claver Hall Spark a New Wave of Diversity Awareness at Fairfield University

By Martin O’Sullivan News Editor Black History month began this year with a shocking reminder of the prejudice and racism that many have worked so hard to combat. On the morning of Feb. 1, a Public Safety officer discovered that a plaque located in the north entrance of Claver Hall had been vandalized, according to University officials. An unknown culprit carved racial slurs and anti-Semitic symbols onto the plaque, which celebrates the life and work of Jesuit missionary St. Peter Claver. “Someone etched into the plaque the word ‘nigger’ and also etched [a] swastika in there,” said Will Johnson, director of student diversity programs and associate dean of students. “There is a reference to the work St. Peter Claver did in terms of working with slaves, and above that someone etched in ‘nig’ right next to the term slave.” In an email to the student body, Dean of Students Karen Donoghue asserted that “we have no reason to believe at this time that the acts were anything more than thoughtless, cowardly, juvenile, and ignorant acts.” Although Johnson dubbed it “an isolated incident,” he stressed that this is “certainly not the first that has happened in recent times here at Fairfield.” Specifically, Johnson cited

a similar event last semester, in which an anonymous offender used shaving cream to spell out the same racial slur in a Jogues Hall bathroom. He admitted that although some have cited certain similarities between the natures of the offenses, no definite link has been made between the two occurrences. “I’ve heard from many individuals that there’s sort of this undercurrent here of prejudice and bias and racism and bigotry,” said Johnson. “But it goes under the current because no one ever comes out and speaks about it, or they feel that if they do that they could become a target.” However, not all students agree. “I’ve never felt discriminated here at Fairfield ever,” said Gregory Chase ‘13, a student of Honduran descent. “Just hearing like something like that happened is a rare incident.” On Feb. 6, Claver Hall residents were required to attend a mandatory discussion concerning these recent occurrences. Residents were assured that the meeting was not meant as a punishment, since the culprit could potentially be a non-student, let alone a resident of a different hall. Instead, students were informed that the point of the gathering was to discuss feelings and reactions to the event as a community. “At the end of the day, it shouldn’t matter that it happened in our building, but that it happened on our campus,” said Meredith

Martin O’Sullivan/The Mirror

A second plaque in Claver pays similar homage to St. Peter Claver’s life work, though this one escaped being vandalized.

Smith, Area Coordinator of the Village. In an interview with The Mirror, she added, “I wish it didn’t take an incident for students to have a conversation about race and gender and injustice in general.” “Maybe they’re just trying to start... small,” said Claver resident Kate Jameson ‘14 in regard to the Claver

gathering. “I think it’s good they’re starting to do something. They just happened to start with us.” Although several students spoke out at the Claver Hall meeting, a majority of students kept silent. When asked to comment on this, Director of Residential Life Ophelie Rowe-Allen said, “It made

me think, ‘Are we creating that space for them? Is Fairfield providing that space where their students are comfortable speaking out?’ Not because of their race, but because of their cause and what they believe in.”

Vandalism | page 3

Can You Keep A Secret? By Courtney Todd Contributing Writer

Amber Nowak/The Mirror

Prof. Giovanni Ruffini, holding his iconic ponytail at the St. Baldrick’s Fundraiser

Cutting Your Hair For A Cause News | page 3

His own mother called him diabolical. Others called his idea crazy, but now Frank Warren is better known as the founder of PostSecret. In Nov. 2004, Frank Warren had an idea. He was going to hand out note cards to strangers on the streets on Washington, D.C., soliciting them for their secrets. “Once secrets slowly started coming in it didn’t take long for my crazy idea to not feel so crazy anymore,” said Warren during a presentation to an almost entirely female audience at the Quick Center for the Arts last Thursday night. All secrets are mailed to Warren’s home in Germantown, Maryland. He then posts 20 new secrets on the PostSecret site each Sunday. To date, Warren has collected half a million secrets, and says he receives about 1,000 postcards each week. The original concept of the project was that people would anonymously decorate a postcard and write out a secret that

they had never revealed before. There are no restrictions on the content of the secret; only that it must be completely truthful and must never have been said out loud before. Secrets range from admitting to sexual misconduct, criminal activity and eating disorders to confessions of secret desires and embarrassing habits. The secrets are meant to feel equally empowering to both the author and the readers. Since the official launch of the website on Jan. 1, 2005, Warren has received an abundance of both praise and criticism, being dubbed the most trusted stranger in America. In addition, he has had five books of secrets published as well as his regular Sunday posts. In each book, Warren leaves a secret of his own. In his newest book called, PostSecret Confessions on Life Death and God, Warren says, “Sometimes when we’re keeping a secret, that secret is really keeping us.” Warren said he believes that we are all connected in our secrets, which is why one person admitting a dark secret is usually

Courtney Todd/The Mirror

Frank Warren, Founder of PostSecret

what encourages others to follow and admit theirs as well. “These postcards could be the only time some of these people ‘out’ their secret,” said Warren.

Secret | page 5

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


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Why Have There Been So Many “Mr.” Presidents? By Margaret Andrew Contributing writer

It’s an intimidating role and time-consuming task for any college student. Twentyyear-old Karen Donoghue was entrusted with a $290,000 budget and the huge responsibility of planning events and activities for all Fairfield undergrads, maintaining a disciplinary court and representing student interests in front of the school’s top administrators. Ten years ago, Donoghue became the first woman to ever have the title of FUSA president. The Mirror’s headline following her election referenced “shattering the glass ceiling.” But now, Donoghue – Fairfield’s Dean of Students – remains only one of two women to ever hold the office of the president of FUSA on a campus where women students outnumber the men. Will the FUSA presidential election 2012 be more of the same? Matt Dinnan, the senior associate dean of students and director of university activities, acknowledges that women are very involved in leadership roles on campus even though only two women have ever held the highest position. “Despite there being a larger undergraduate female population and despite the fact that there are more females engaged in leadership positions at Fairfield, the candidates running for FUSA president trend towards the male population,” Dinnan said. Donoghue was elected president with a student population that was 56 percent female. Yet with a total of 59 percent women on campus today, there has yet to be another female FUSA president since Jessica DiBuono graduated in 2006. The first woman to become the president of FUSA continues

her work of improving the Fairfield community today, through her role as the current Dean of Students. Donoghue ’03 didn’t expect to play a part in FUSA history when she first came to campus. She was the president of her high school and, upon arriving on campus, successfully ran to be the president of her freshman class. However, she did not

Donoghue was elected at a difficult time for Fairfield, with the cuts of both the football and ice hockey teams coming shortly after she assumed office. She arranged a forum with Fr. Kelley to provide an opportunity for the students to discuss the shocking announcement. She was also involved in instituting peer academic advising, a program that is still utilized today.

ins that they counted until one in the morning. About 100 of us marched to the campus center to hear the results.” And the final count was equally dramatic; Donoghue won by a margin of only 11 votes. This important moment for women on campus was documented in a New York Times article, but despite all the publicity, she is most proud of

The Mirror Photo Archives

The front page of the Fairfield Mirror for the Feb. 28, 2002 edition, announcing Karen Donoghue’s victory in FUSA elections

seriously consider becoming FUSA president until her junior year. With no woman ever before serving as FUSA president, Donoghue remembers thinking, “this could be great for the institution, in particular for the female gender.” However, these were not her only motives in seeking the presidency. She also aspired to better the institution, the same as any man would hope to. “I think people tried to put that pressure on me,” she recalls, “like I should do x, y, and z [because I am a woman].” However, “it is the same as if a male had been in that role, and I had to work to the best of my abilities.”

She fondly remembers her time as a student, especially her exciting campaign and nailbiting victory. Donoghue and another male candidate beat two other men in the primary, which then incited a two-week campaign of knocking on doors and hanging up signs. Her direct competition was not only male, but was also endorsed by The Mirror, an obstacle that didn’t deter Donoghue from her presidential aspirations. Donoghue describes the announcement of the election results as one of her favorite moments at Fairfield. “They were supposed to announce the results at 11, then they pushed it back to 12, but it was so close and there were so many write-

the opportunity this provided to women to know they can be leaders. Bringing the conversation to the present day, however, she concludes by posing a valid question, “Why aren’t women running?” James Fitzpatrick ’70, Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs, recalls that the first time a woman even ran for the title of FUSA president wasn’t until 1991. Three years before Donoghue’s election, a female lost by only nine votes. However, women have been dramatically underrepresented in both the number of presidential candidates and actual FUSA presidents since they were first admitted to Fairfield in 1970.

Communication Prof. David Gudelunas, the Director of Women’s Studies, believes that women should be represented in all aspects of student life, including the role of FUSA president. “It is critical that women’s voices be heard in all matters of University life. Women bring a different perspective and skills to the democratic process and it is vital that they be heard. We have amazingly talented women leaders within our student body and I hope they heed the call to participate in student government.” Many women hold some of the highest positions within FUSA, but are hesitant to run for president for reasons that are not associated with gender. Nicoletta Richardson ’14, the FUSA Senate Chair of the Academic Committee, doesn’t intend to ever seek the office of the president. “It is a large responsibility. You have to publicly put yourself out there and please the students, whereas in another position, you’re not the visual head and you can do your work privately.” Kalee Brunelle ’14, the FUSA Senate Vice Chair, agrees with Richardson. “When something goes wrong, everyone blames you,” she explains of her reason for not considering the presidency. Director of Class Council for the class of 2014, Laura Ballanco says, “I don’t want to run because it takes over your life. You have to be dedicated to FUSA first and then class comes second, and I want to focus on my academics and not have FUSA take over my life.” Will a female candidate emerge in the coming weeks, as the FUSA election season kicks into gear? Election day is quickly approaching on February 28. Donoghue is optimistic, but, male or female, “I would love for people to be as passionate about FUSA elections.”

Updated FUSA Election Schedule 2/10 - BCC 200 4 p.m. Application packets due for all potential candidates. 2/13 - BCC 200 7-8 p.m. Posting policy meeting. Potential candidates will be informed as to the specific rules of campaigning.

2/16 - LLBCC 7-10:30 p.m. FUSA Primary Debates. Candidates will tell you what they’re all about! 2/21 - LLBCC 10 a.m. - 7:30 p.m. FUSA primary elections. Potential candidates will be narrowed down to two per position.

2/28 - LLBCC 10 a.m. - 7:30 p.m. FUSA elections. 2/28 - The Levee 9-11 p.m. Announcement and Post-party. Be sure to stay up to date on FUSA elections by following @MirrorFairfield

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


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Students and Staff Show Symbolic Support By Amber Nowak Chief Copy Editor

Hair is a huge part of human culture. It’s one of the ways we indicate to others our status, personality, even age or gender. Some of us spend hours fussily working on our hair, making sure it looks just right. So most of us would think twice, or three or four times, before chopping it all off. But what if it was for a good cause? Because some people don’t have the chance to show off their locks. Both St. Baldrick’s Foundation and Pantene Beautiful Lengths understand this, and came together at Fairfield University last Saturday night to sponsor a fundraiser for kids undergoing treatment for cancer. The St. Baldrick’s Fundraising Dance at the Levee was well attended and more than a dozen attendees stepped up on stage and got their hair cut. St. Baldrick’s is a fundraising program for childhood cancer research and funds the most in childhood research grants after the U.S. government. Through St. Baldrick’s fundraising, volunteers shave their heads in solidarity with the many children who have lost their hair as a result of cancer treatment. No women volunteered to have their heads shaved. However, a number of women, and some men, who had longer hair got short crops and donated what was cut to Pantene Beautiful Lengths. Beautiful Lengths, a partnership between Pantene and the American Cancer Society, donates thousands of free, real-hair wigs to women living with cancer and are distributed

Vandalism Continuted From Pg. 1

across the country. The chief coordinator of the event, Crystal Rodriguez ’14, heard about St. Baldrick’s through a friend who attended the event at Quinnipiac University. “I was amazed by the event right off the bat, but it took a summer of hardship to really light my fire,” said Rodriguez. “I know cancer has affected all of us... I felt compelled to do something about it. I knew I didn’t just want to throw money at a problem and hope it just goes away. I needed to see the change. It needs to be a movement.” She explained that St. Baldrick’s encourages people to take an active role by stepping into the Amber Nowak/The Mirror shoes of those undergoing cancer Both students and faculty gathered in the Levee on Saturday to cut their hair for charity. treatment. “It is one thing to say, ‘You’ll whole heads. anyway with my hair, so when get through this. Be brave,’ than Mike Elwell ‘13, one of the one of my students approached to say, ‘I’ll be brave with you,” she volunteers who went for the head me and said can you do it for said. shave asserted that he would not us, I thought even better, that’s The event started off with Ro- miss his hair as it was “for a really fantastic.” driguez giving a speech in which good cause.” Stephanie Lee ’13 Several members of the she named several individuals was equally excited about the basketball team contributed for whom the event was to honor donation she made of her hair: to the St. Baldrick’s fundraiser specifically. “I know people who suffer from in an effort to join in solidarSeveral poetry readings cancer and so it’s like I’m helping ity with cancer patients. “It’s followed an initial speech by someone out there.” good that we can let kids know Rodriguez. One poem was read Students were not the only they’re not alone,” said Sean by Astrid Quinones ‘14, who later ones taking the plunge. Professor Crawford ’12 whose decision performed Katy Perry’s Firework of Classical Studies Dr. Giovanni to shave his head was a bit of a along to an acoustic guitar played Ruffini chopped his characterissacrifice. His teammate Rakim by Gabi Tozzi ‘13. tic ponytail, a result of four years, Sanders agreed comment“I just want to give as much to donate to the cause. ing that it was “all for a good as I can,” said Quinones in refer“I got this haircut to intercause.” ence to her contributions over view for the job that I have now,” Solidarity was key. “On top the course of the evening as well he said. Ruffini explained that his of raising funds and donatas her decision to cut her long department head told him not to ing hair, I think St. Baldricks’ hair to a neat bob for a similar cut his hair until he got tenure, offers a valuable lesson that cause earlier in the year. because “she said ‘people only my generation (and well, all Leading up to a dance party know you as that long haired guy people) need to learn,” Rodrithat would finish off the night, in the history dept[artment].” guez noted. “We need to learn the haircuts began, starting off He added, “It was someto step outside of ourselves.” with those willing to shave their thing I was planning on doing

According to Rowe-Allen, a campus-wide collaboration between staff is being instituted to reach students at a more “intimate level.” Parties involved include the President’s Institutional and Diversity Council, the Student Diversity Office, the Office for Mission and Identity Programs as well as several area coordinators. Students’ responses to this apparent racism, both at the Claver community meeting and on campus in general, have been consistent in their disdain for the nature of the vandalism. “People are saying the kid was probably drunk or wasted or whatever, but it still doesn’t matter. You don’t go around drawing a swastika,” said Andrew Kringas ‘14. ”It’s not taken too kindly at a Jesuit residence, never mind in any college.” Although generally consistent, opinions still varied as to the motivation for the etchings. “I always feel like incidents like these are alcohol related,” said Jordan Freeman ‘13. “We don’t have a race problem. We have an alcohol problem … but it’s dumb that you would actually carry through with something like this.” When asked for a direct message to students, Smith responded: “Don’t be afraid to step on some eggshells … Silence can perceived as apathy, and you can be the most caring person, but if you don’t speak up or speak out or write a letter or report anonymously, you’re blindly excepting something that you may not stand for. Don’t be silent.” Fellow area coordinator Amarildo Barbosa shared, “I understand it’s going to be an uncomfortable conversation for a lot people, but that doesn’t mean it’s a conversation they should be avoiding.” Rowe-Allen shared similar sentiments: “For me, it’s for students to see the word social justice as an action oriented word.”

The Force Is Strong With This One By Martin O’Sullivan News Editor

Danica Ceballos/The Mirror

Fr. Michael Doody, previous Director of Campus Ministry, with students.

Doody Resigns From His Duties By Danica Ceballos Associate news Editor

Thirty four years. Thousands of students. One Jesuit. After working as an administrator for many years and director of Campus Ministry at Fairfield for six years, Fr. Michael Doody S.J. will be stepping down at the end of the school year. “I’ve done what I came to do … I will come back in January re-energized with time for students and a break from the administration,” said Doody when discussing his sabbatical this fall. In a letter to students sent out on Tuesday afternoon, President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J. described

Doody’s important contributions to the University. “Michael’s great spirit, huge laugh, and constant presence have enriched our campus. … I personally think of him as a good and tireless shepherd,” said von Arx. Fr. George Collins, S.J. will take over the position beginning next year. He has worked at Fairfield since this past summer and is currently the Coordinator of Mission & Identity. Doody expressed excitement when discussing the transition. “Fr. Collins is great, but he is underutilized. He has so much to offer. It is a perfect time for change,” said Doody. “I’ll still be around eating in the cafeteria every day. I just won’t have to deal with budgets.”

Is it possible to be your own father? For Charles Ross, it’s part of his job. On Feb. 4, Ross performed his one-man rendition of the original “Star Wars” trilogy at Fairfield University’s Quick Center, playing every character from ominous Darth Vader to his son, the whiney Luke Skywalker. Aided only by spotlights corresponding to the mood of his character, Ross used his hands, singing voice, and every other conceivable part of his body to communicate his rapid character transitions. “I find it personally terrifying that I could be your introduction to Star Wars,” Ross jokingly said to an audience member who admitted to having never seen the films. Being dubbed as an interpretive act, Ross’ rendition had components noticeably different from the actual films. The first of these was the speed of the performance; within the first 30 seconds of his act, Ross had already recreated the opening 10 minutes of “Star Wars: A New Hope.” He maintained this

pace to a point where he performed the first of the three movies in only 25 minutes. Another original mannerism was Ross’ inclusion of his own humor and extensive “Star Wars” knowledge into his recitation of movie lines and renditions

Contributed Photo

Charles Ross, Star Wars Enthusiast

of the soundtrack. For example, in his performance of the scene in which Obi-Wan Kenobi tells Luke Skywalker his father is dead, Ross added the subtle effect using his hands of a growing Pinocchio nose. Ross continued this trend of infusing his own commentary on the movie between rapidly performed iconic scenes. When

the dimensions of the Death Star are being discussed in the plan to destroy it, Ross added another one of his own lines: “Why are we using the metric system?” Ross began his act in 2002 and has performed it over 1,200 times, according to his website. In addition to performing “Star Wars,” he has also garnered attention through his one man interpretation of “Lord of the Rings.” The event was well attended. According to a Quick Center employee, there were approximately 450 audience members present. Aside from a handful of couples that left within the first 20 minutes, attendees stayed and laughed for the duration of the performance. And as some of the audience members who left presumably didn’t enjoy the act, Ross had some issues with the performance of some audience members. After seeing one attendee use their cell phone on multiple occasions, Ross stopped his performance twice to tell them to stop. Ross continued his action packed act until he had packed almost six hours of film into a little over an hour.

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


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Campus Crime Beat

Wednesday, 2/1

12:17 a.m. The memorial for Peter Claver S.J. in Claver Hall was vandalized with racist graffiti.*

3:09 a.m. Two non-students were arrested by Fairfield Police on 1st Degree Trespassing after being issued a warning earlier by DPS.

4:45 a.m. The glass map covering at the Barlow Road gate was smashed.

7:55 a.m. Ceiling tiles in a corridor of Regis Hall were found to be ripped down.

Thursday, 2/2

4:28 a.m. Ceiling tiles in a corridor of Jogues Hall were ripped down.

12:15 a.m. A University student was arrested by Fairfield Police for Evading Responsibility after driving into two parked cars in the area of the Townhouses. The student was also referred to the Dean of Students’ office.

12:45 a.m. Fairfield Police was notified of two nonstudents spotted on campus who had been warned earlier for trespassing.

5:36 a.m. Exit signs on the 2nd and 3rd floors of Jogues Hall were ripped from the walls.

11:49 p.m. After refusing to produce an ID to RAs and DPS, the guest of a student was ejected from campus.

10:12 p.m. DPS responded to a fight between two students in Jogues Hall. Both students were referred to the Dean of Students’ office.

Saturday, 2/4 1:05 a.m. A student was referred to the Dean of Students’ office after a townhouse resident reported the person as an unwanted guest.

11:05 p.m. An RA reported more ceiling tiles in Regis Hall scattered throughout a hallway.

1:49 a.m. The East card-access door of Regis Hall was smashed. Maintenance was notified.

Thursday February 9 –

Ladies Night featuring The Bensonians. 9 p.m. 12 a.m. at the Levee. Friday February 10 –

Sunday, 2/5

Friday, 2/3

Mirror Picks of the Week!

*If you have any information about this incident or others, please report it to the Department of Public Safety


Rebirth Brass Band: Mardi Gras! 8 p.m. - 10 p.m. at the Quick Kelley Theater. Saturday February 11 –

Buy-A-Date. Students bid for dates to raise money for charity. 8 p.m. - 1 a.m. at the Levee. Tuesday February 14 –

“Love, Me.” Fundraiser to raise awareness about Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. at the BCC Info Desk.

Mirror Meeting- 7:00 p.m. Every Wednesday

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The Mirror strives to report accurately in all its stories. If you encounter any errors, please contact Editor in Chief Mikaela Tierney

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


Grassroots Group Needs Student Support

PostSecret Continuted From Pg. 1

Warren stated that he receives a large amount of postcards relating to suicide, and that each one really resonates with him due to his loss of a close friend to suicide. The PostSecret community has now generated over half a million dollars in suicide prevention efforts. During the IRHA sponsored event, Warren also shared secrets that didn’t make it into any of the books or onto the website, and allowed audience members to come up and share their own secrets. One girl admitted she used to use her mother’s pads as beds for her Barbie dolls, while others admitted more shocking secrets relating to attempted suicides and alcoholic family members. Warren said that he sometimes feels haunted by all of the secrets, but stressed it is in a good way. “If you flip through the secrets, at least one is bound to resonate with you,” he said. Audience members raved at Warren’s performance, calling it truly inspiring and insightful. “After that, I feel truly compelled to tell someone a secret,” said Addie Reilly ’14. Before wrapping up, Warren left the audience with an inspirational message when he said, “The world needs to hear your voice.”

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By Loan Le Vine Director

A grassroots movement is forming on the Fairfield University campus and the student body’s participation is needed for its success. Sophomores Luke Record and Ricky Solano are planning to open a University chapter of RESULTS, a nonprofit organization with a plan to end global poverty. RESULTS, or Responsibility for Ending Starvation Using Legislation Trimtab-ing and Support, has a mission “to create the public and political will to end poverty by empowering individuals to exercise their personal and political power for change,” according to its website. RESULTS has made strides throughout the world since 1980. Its educational branch, RESULTS Educational Fund (REF), founded in 1983, has also been equally effective in the world by spreading messages about global poverty. The term ‘poverty’ also encompasses long-term issues such as poor education, deteriorating global health and big business finance. To combat such issues, the grassroots advocacy group, with the help of citizens, contacts key local legislators to support anti-poverty bills, which fund effective solutions to ease poverty and protect the needy. A current issue RESULTS wants people to be more aware of is a funding crisis that threatens a global health effort to end AIDS in Africa.

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which is in its tenth year, saves about 100,000 lives each month, according to a recent press release by RESULTS. Recently, it has discovered HPTN 052, a potential treatment for AIDS. When this treatment is applied in the early stages of the disease, it can reduce the risk of transmission by 96 percent, according to RESULTS. Additionally, the treatment

responsible,” he said. “We should tell them what to do.” In doing this, students’ voices need to be heard. He and Solano are beginning to gather interested people in the McCormick Residential Hall, but they also hope to branch out and educate the campus on RESULTS and the Global Fund. Solano finds the student population’s membership crucial to the future success of RESULTS. But for

Contributed Photo

can diminish “the occurrence of TB infection by 84 percent.” However, the Global Fund is losing donors who contribute to research studies on HPTN 052. RESULTS encourages the United States to keeps its 3-year pledge of $4 million dollars, which was made in October 2010 by the Obama administration. The US is a crucial donor; it’s the largest single donor to the Global Fund. Record feels that the government should listen to its citizens. “Another theme of RESULTS is the idea that our governors, our congressmen, our senators, work for us, therefore we should hold them

now, Solano said the group’s goal is to get attention. They want to “get the message out and get people on board.” Once students are made aware of the issues, they will then try to get the attention of legislators by writing and calling them to support the Global Fund, Solano said. “If we get more and more people to contact representatives, then [we’ll] be influential. We pretty much want to build a bond between the campus and the [Fairfield] community,” said Solano. RESULTS Global Grassroots Manager Ken Patterson, who visited the campus in October 2011, be-

lieves that Fairfield will make a great impact on RESULTS’ progress. He said: “It’s important to bring RESULTS to Fairfield because, without a doubt, there are people at Fairfield who believe every child on this Earth should have access to a basic education, so that they can reach their potential; that every child should receive the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients they need so they can reach their physical and intellectual potential; that if there is a life-saving treatment available at low-cost, then no one should have to die in vain because they don’t have pocket change to buy it for themselves or their children.” “RESULTS has proven that even those of us who are not rich or in any position of esteem or power have the power to do something about everything mentioned above,” Patterson concluded. After the group is established, Record said that he would like to collaborate with other advocacy groups on campus like Proactive Investment Club and Students for Social Justice. Record said that though the funding crisis for Global Fund is a tragic opportunity, students should be proactive. “If you can make a difference on a global scale, then why not?” Record said. Any students interested in attending a RESULTS meeting should contact Luke Record for more information at luke.record@student.


Whose am I? How do I live a creative and examined life?



Whose am I?

Whose am I?

Who am I?

Who am I called to be?

Who am I?

Live in Community, Act in the World.

How am I called to serve justice?

Sophomore Residential Colleges

Sharing stories, kicking back with friends, asking the big “meaning of life” questions, integrating coursework with personal experiences, mentoring, retreats, and a whole lot of fun!

Which one will you choose?



The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

By FUSA Columnist

On Monday night I attended “Occupy Your Intellect“ with both Academics Committee Chair Nicoletta Richardsion, and Student Life Committee Chair Sam Maxfield. It was a very intriguing discussion conducted in a round table format with many critical issues being brought up. Students raised concerns over the cut in work study packages as well as some unclear information being given to them from administration about the budget crisis. One of the most significant things for me was seeing an increase in student involvement and discussion, building on last week’s What’s The Fuss event. In regards to last week’s event, the different topics that were discussed have been delegated across FUSA Exec Council and an update will be made available next week. I am very excited to see an interested and proactive student body starting to take rise. For anyone who would like to take more of a leadership role in these initiatives, I encourage you to run

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for a student advocacy position within FUSA. In that role you will be able to serve the student body and better equip yourself to advocate with administration. If you are interested please attend an Information Session Wednesday, Feb. 8th at 7 p.m. in BCC 206. I stand by my claim that FUSA will aim to satisfy student wants and needs. To do so, we need to continuously voice our opinions at different forums, meetings, events, or simple e-mail correspondence. If you feel strongly about a particular issues, tell us about it. If you would like to see FUSA working on something we have many different vehicles from General Senate meetings to tweeting @ FUSA47 for you to voice your opinions. I look forward to hearing from you.

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Your President, Robert Vogel ‘13

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The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012



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editorial Mikaela Tierney |Editor-in-Chief Gabriella Tutino |Executive Editor Charlotte Adinolfi| Managing Editor We know it's a week early, but a week is a good time period to reflect on your feelings of Valentine's Day. Don't deny that you haven't been thinking about it. If you're in a relationship, you might be planning out what you want to do with your significant other. Do you keep it casual or go all out to impress them? And if you're single, you have a few options as well: do you enjoy your singleness, or do you work up the courage to ask out that person you've had the hots for since that time your hands accidentally brushed against each other while passing a test forward last semester? This so-called "holiday" puts a lot of pressure on both sexes, especially in college, whether we admit it or not. And why is that? Maybe it has to do with that feeling called "love." There are tons of movies, songs, books and real-life relationships that all testify to the power of love, both its good and its bad side. Love can be great, but it can also be terrible. We can either thrive off of love and experience eternal happiness or be hurt so viciously that we close ourselves up and become cynical, doubting people. And where do you find love? Well, you have to start dating. Today's generation is not the best at dating. We're more of a hook-up culture; sexual gratification first, relationship afterwards (maybe). But that's not how it's supposed to work. The benefits of dating someone is that you can test out whether you might actually genuinely like someone, instead of being singularly attracted to their hot bod. You can't build a long-lasting meaningful relationship based on just sex alone. Dating can be scary, because you don't know whether or not you'll be accepted. But think of it this way: Dating is like applying to colleges. You'll get accepted to some, and rejected by others. The rejection hurts, but you move on and get over it anyways. It (usually) works out better in the long run. For inspiration about the dating scene, check out the interview in The Vine with Stag alum, Evan Barden. Whatever your plans are for Valentine's Day, whether it be to go on a date or embrace your single self, you should give it 100% percent and stick with your decision. With that being said, the lovely ladies of The Mirror will be spending their V-day editing next week's issue of the newspaper. Stop by the office with some chocolate and flowers to cheer us up after your dates or fun solo nights out - we're sacrificing our romantic lives to bring the news to campus. The least you could do is give us some candy... please?

Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down

•Giants win the Super Bowl!

•Patriots lost.

•Women's Basketball are on a 7 game winning streak.

• Snow is predicted for this weekend.

• Men's Basketball are on a 3 game winning streak.

•Father Doody resigned from his position in Campus Ministry.

• Prop 8, which meant to ban gay marriage, was ruled unconstitutional in California. •Prof. Ruffini cut his hair for the first time since coming to Fairfield in honor of St. Baldrick's Foundation.

•The Loyola Super Bowl video didn't make Jimmy Kimmel Show (but you can still watch it on Youtube!) •Valentine's Day is on a Tuesday this year, which makes it hard to celebrate.

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Opinion | 7

Editor: Elizabeth Koubek

Shout Out To The Fairfield Girls

Vincent Ferrer/The Mirror

Have you ever heard the cat call of "That Car of Drunk Boys?" Tell us your thoughts. Have an opinion about something? Send us your thoughts at

Letter to "That Car of Drunk Boys" By Julianne Whittaker Contributing Writer

In the month that we’ve been back at school, my roommate and I have not once, but twice, had the pleasure of being nearly run over and cat-called at by “That Car of Drunk Fairfield Boys.” It's not an unfamiliar story: a packed car of Fairfield guys drives by two girls walking home to the Village after a night at the townhouse and yells something clever, in both of these instances, “SLUTS!” Who is this mysterious car of drunk Fairfield boys? It perplexes me to no end. I’ve been at Fairfield for four years now and I have never met someone I really didn’t like; I cannot think of anyone that is truly mean and ignorant, or simply out to be a jerk. Yet this keeps happening. I asked my guy friends for insight and they all pointed to the combination of anonymity and liquid courage, which leads to some guys yelling slurs out a car window to impress their friends and get a cheap laugh. I know its rhetorical to say, but really? Are

we really still that immature? It's not that instances like this bother me because they are hurtful. Both times, my roommate and I were walking home in jeans and big coats (it is winter, after all), not to mention the fact that we’ve both been in serious relationships for the past two years. It would be wrong to call us a slut even if those things weren’t the case, but it does make the in-

“And if your buddies

are cat-calling out the window, drop them off at Fairfield Prep until they can behave like adults.” cident laughable to us, not hurtful. This stuff bothers me more because I just can’t understand it. Once again I ask: who is sitting in “That Car of Drunk Fairfield Boys?” Fairfield is such a small school; it’s unlikely that we all haven’t met before. We could sit next to each other in an Economics class or play in the same intramural basketball league. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised

if one of us has been your Orientation Leader or your FYM, organized a program in your residence hall, or studenttaught in one of your classes. We’re both pretty nice people that I bet you wouldn’t direct slurs at if you were sober or in public. We’re your peers. I just can’t wrap my mind around how things like this happen on our campus. Even if you didn’t know or didn’t like us, presumably you have a mother, a sister, a friend that’s a girl, or a maybe even a girlfriend (less likely). I would guess you wouldn’t want people calling them a slut or another derogatory word; in fact, you’d probably beat someone up who did. So, next time you’re cruising home from the beach, think for a second and try out a new joke to impress the gang. And if your buddies are cat-calling out the window, drop them off at Fairfield Prep until they can behave like adults. It would be great if we could graduate without any more run-ins with “That Drunk Car of Fairfield Boys.”

The Mirror welcomes the opinions and contributions of its readers:Letters to the editor must be timely and submitted by email at or Box AA.All letters to the editor that are appropriate will be published either in print or online.The Mirror reserves the right to edit letters and articles for content, length and grammatical error. Letters should be free of obscenities and personal attacks, and should contain correct and factual information not exceeding 500 words.

Notable and Quotable: “I wish it didn't take an incident for students to have a conversation about race and gender and injustice in general." - Meredith Smith "Anomymous Vandal Strikes Claver " pg. 1


The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

Letter to the Editor

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Fairfield student Sodexo workers speak out against their workplace environment To Whoever Is Willing to Listen, I am writing this letter to anyone who is willing to listen and acknowledge some of the frustrations that have plagued my current workplace. Our voice is no longer heard and we have been subjectively looked down upon by our higher-ups. I write this letter with the intent of serving as the “voice” of the voiceless, as I feel that unless I take this stand, we will continue to work in such a horrendous and unhealthy environment. I wish to maintain my name anonymous in fear of losing my job, a job that I am currently still in because I am unfortunately in financial need of it. I have been working here for years now and I can assuredly state that had things maintained the way they were before, there would be no need for this letter. The workplace was once a friendly environment, one in which the managers and subordinates shared a very close yet professional bond. They were willing to work with us as opposed to working above us. If one had a question, one would not have to hesitate to bring it up to management in exchange for assurance. Everyone knew their tasks the moment they clocked in, which made it easier for the managers to go about their own work. Employees all shared the willingness and intent to maximize their potential for the better service of their clients. However, those times have become nothing but a distant memory;

one that I had to dig deep in simply to write this letter. Since new management took over several months ago, life at the workplace has been horrible to say the least. Horrendous, catastrophic, appalling, calamitous, dreadful and disastrous are all adjectives I would use to describe this setting. I shall stop myself now before I bombard this letter with an infinite amount of adjectives that I could use to describe this horrid place. I do not wish to blame the entire staff, for they are not all responsible for the events that have transpired as of late. Some of the managers prior to the management change still remain and working with them is still a pleasure. However, there are a couple [new staffers] that have just torn this place apart from the inside. They are so autocratic and abuse their power as managers. One may be constantly harassing you telling you what to do and when to do it while the other just lets it happen. It is clearly understood that your responsibility as a manager is to dictate certain responsibilities. However, these new managers have taken that to a whole new extreme. Once I clock in, I used to be told of my tasks; simple instructions are all I needed. Once I became aware of my duty, no questions were needed. I simply did what I was asked and the managers knew

that. They found comfort in knowing that I knew what my job was and how to do it and I found comfort in them establishing that trust onto me. However, now we are constantly being harassed. The two managers will stay in their office for a good 30 minutes and just come out demanding this and demanding that. I may be cleaning my job at a certain moment and they may come

“We can voice our complaints all we want, but they will continue to mute us should it continue to favor them.” out complaining about things that I would have gotten to the moment I finished what I was initially doing. They have no patience and then when I leave my current task to do what they want, they complain as to why I left the other task. There is no way to satisfy these individuals and I emphasize: NO WAY. They are the modern equivalent to bullies. They know they are above you and can make you do anything they wish. They constantly emphasize how easily replaceable you are and how you should do as you are told before you're placed

on the chopping block. Student workers have been the most exploited in this sense. Apparently, because we are students, we can be let go at their disposal. That is unfair and unjust. You may have worked your tail off to make sure everything is replenished, cleaned and served only to have these managers complain as to why there is nothing to do. One of them stated, “Why don’t you make yourself useful? Is this your first day working? Because it looks that way." Their sarcasm is demeaning and people have begun to lose that willingness to work. No longer exists that enthusiasm to work your best for the bosses that respect you as much as you respect them. In fact, student workers who have been unfairly targeted have attempted to call out on the days that these specific managers are in charge. Who would want to come to work regularly to simply be talked down upon and treated as if you are unable or meaningless? I will not lie because I too have done so as well. It is horrible that student workers have been trying to structure their schedule in a fashion that would not place them to work under these tyrants. Goodbye to the days when I used to wake up excited about coming to work. I now say hello to days when I wish they never existed. There is no system of appraisal here. Rarely will you hear a “good job” or receive a pat on the back for your hard efforts. All your work goes unno-

ticed nowadays. They don’t care for what you do but will complain over the littlest things that are out of your control. Every day they come with a book of checklists filled with new things to do. Some of these things are just out of this world and prove that they are trying to exploit us at every chance they can get. I chose to write this letter to get my message across, a plead to anyone who may listen, that this is not right. That such negativity that currently clouds our setting is unacceptable. Our morale is low and some have preferred to stop working than to continue being mistreated and disrespected. I have chosen not to bring this matter to the attention to the next in rank because they will not do anything. They are also part of the problem for allowing this to happen. We can voice our complaints all we want but they will continue to mute us should it continue to favor them. This letter is important to us and it should be to you because we the workers take pride and honor in serving you your food on a daily basis. This is our attempt to unmute ourselves from this dictatorship of which has become our job. Regards, Jose Mota, Vanessa Ruiz, Didiel Santana, Bharosh Shrestha, Karishma, Gotham, Andy Tran, Huythanh Tran, Mien-Hu, Ashley De La Cruz, Nate Peter, Juan Giron and Vitch Jean-Jacques

A Fairfield Super Bowl By Kristen Filicia Contributing Writer Fairfield University students anxiously looked forward to the Super Bowl XLVI. The game gave many students an opportunity to root for their favorite football team as well as stumble upon some interesting commercials. Super Bowl XLVI could not have been more exciting for the students of Fairfield University. Due to the location of our school, there seemed to be an even split between the New York Giant fans and the New England Patriot fans. The Giants won the game 21-17 and became Super Bowl Champions for the second time in four years. Prior to Sunday, it was clear that most students were looking forward to the game itself rather than the commercials in hopes to gain bragging

rights over their friends. The weekend showed no shortage of Eli Manning or Tom Brady jerseys worn around campus, and on Sunday students piled into townhouses and apartments on campus to watch the rivalry. Although most of the focus seemed to be concentrated on the game, some students not from nearby areas may have been more interested in the commercials. In recent years the Super Bowl commercials could be described as forgettable and

received sub-par reviews. This year according to television executives the ads cost $3.5 million for 30 seconds of air time. With the price of air time so high and several projected viewers, expectations may have been a little higher, but the early releases of many of the ads undeniably ruined the sur-

prise. With no element of surprise, the auto companies seemed to spend the most money on a similar com-

Vincent Ferrer/The Mirror

mercial theme. Chrysler cast Clint Eastwood, Honda used Matthew Broderick and Acura starred Jerry Seinfeld -all of whom are widely known and well-liked actors. These three commercials must have been expensive, but without a doubt left viewers talking about more than just the game.

The Vine

{The Vine}

Story By Kelsey Guerin

Photo Illustration by Loan Le

Vine Editor

Vine Director

One Man. One Year. One Hundred Dates. A Fairfield grad keeps an entertaining blog about his social experiment and personal quest to experience dating – what he considers a lost art form.

The Vine

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

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Fellow Stag's quest to revive the 'lost art' of dating By Kelsey Guerin Vine Editor


rue or false: it’s hard to find someone to date. Apparently, the answer might be a lot more “false” than people would think. Fairfield alumnus Evan Barden ’08 has started what he describes on his blog as a “social experiment and personal quest.” Over the course of one year, Barden will go on 100 dates with many women and even a couple of guys. Yes, you read that right: one year, 100 dates, both women and men. Barden’s project, aptly named

One Hundred Dates (OHD), started on July 1, 2011. After spending years as a self-proclaimed “serial monogamist,” Barden decided to go on 100 dates with dozens of different people to learn more about himself and dating. With the help of his friends, Barden compiled a list of 100 different types of date activities, ranging from the completely traditional to the outlandishly different. Classics such as the Movie Theater Date, the Bowling Date, the Cocktail Date and even the Blind Date are on the list. Much more intriguing, though, are the unusual dates. Barden already went on the Silent

Date, where neither he nor his date communicated verbally. Rather, they interacted through a series of prewritten signs, gestures and note passing. Another interesting date was the Secret Date, during which Barden took out a girl without her realizing that she was on a date. Still to be completed are the Gay Date (Barden is still looking for a gay man “willing to go out with me, a straight man,” he said on his blog) and the Married Woman date (“in an open marriage/separated/ whatever makes it ethical”), among many others. After many of these dates, Barden posts on his blog about the events of the date and any new revelations or insights gained about himself, his date partners and dating in general. With so many women and so many dates, Barden has to have a favorite, right? Surprisingly, this isn’t completely true. "I have had so many good dates and they’ve been special for their own reasons,” Barden said. “Sometimes the activity is awesome, sometimes the adventure of it is great, and other times its something simple but I’m crushing super hard.” Photos from

Evan Barden has certain themes for his dates. Left: He has gone on a Broadway Date and dressed up accordingly. Below: For a Silent Date, he used signs to communicate with his companion.

This can also be the downside to the project, though. “I’ve gone out with some incredible women,” Barden said. For this reason, there have been several dates where he thought that he would possibly pursue a relationship under different circumstances. On his blog, Barden mentions that he would consider quitting the project for one unnamed woman in particular, but for now, he will continue as planned. There are some dates that stand out in Barden’s mind, however, coming from both the traditional and nontraditional ends of the dating spectrum. One such date was the Tattoo Date, during which he got “E.F.B.,” both his initials and his mother’s, tattooed on his arm. Barden’s mother is truly the most important woman in his life, often coming up in conversation on his many dates. Barden tragically lost his mother in a car accident during his freshman year of college. In one blog post, Barden reflected that this loss is probably the reason behind his tendency to rely on monogamous relationships. But he acknowledges that it’s “unrealistic and unfair” for any future leading lady in his life to have to try to fill that void, and so he started this project in part to break that cycle of reliance. When asked what his mother would have thought about OHD, Barden said, “I think my mom would have initially disapproved, but once she understood what it meant to me and why I was doing it, she’d give me her full support… She was a really good mom—she’d be proud of me no matter what.” Don’t confuse Barden with serial daters like the infamous Tucker Max, though. His goal is not to

blog about his exploits simply to gain bragging rights. In fact, he frequently employs the fade-to-black technique when his dates take a turn for the physical. “I just don’t think the internet needs another site about young people and sex,” Barden said of his restraint. “Dating is the unexplored topic. Dating is the lost art.” Why has the art of dating been lost? Barden points to the hook-up culture. Barden believes that part of the reason why dating has taken the backseat is because people view the whole process as “formal and scary.” “If people could just let go a bit more and relax when it comes to dating, I think many more dates would go well,” Barden said. “I’ve personally enjoyed dating a lot because I don’t put a ton of pressure on it. At the same time, I don’t avoid it.” To those who complain that dating is dead, Barden has a simple message: “It still exists. You’re just doing it wrong.” Barden encourages, “Ask someone out on a real date. I think that getting up the guts to be rejected is the hardest part of dating.” He also advises people to always be themselves on dates. “At the very worst, they won’t like you for who you are, and you wouldn’t want to date that person anyway.” To stay up to date on Barden’s project and love life, visit his website Additionally, if any Fairfield women or men are interested in going on a date with Barden, send him an email at Barden will also be on campus representing his company Eze Castle Software this Thursday, Feb. 9 at the career fair in the RecPlex.

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

The Vine

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Valentine's Day Recipe: Better than a Box of Chocolates By Adrianna Montano Food Columnist

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries Ingredients:


have a big sweet tooth, so dessert or chocolates are a usual thing for me. The other night I came across a recipe online for these fabulous looking strawberries stuffed with cheesecake. Just going by the name, I knew I had to try it. Although the picture looked complicated, the dessert was actually so simple to make. The tricky part is coring the inside of the strawberries to then fill them, but once you do one, the rest are a piece of cake. Along with this classy dessert (which ended up being more of a snack), I had a chocolate craving and wanted to go with a favorite. I had a box of brownie mix and knew I needed to run out to grab some Reese's Miniatures. Brownies with Reese's in the middle, how could you ever go wrong? Seeing that Valentine's Day is right around the corner, I figured these two desserts would be perfect. Whether you have a significant other or you’re riding solo this year, these tasty treats will not disappoint. If you and your Valentine do not devour them after dinner, I am sure you and your friends can easily finish them off. Enjoy!

1 pound of large strawberries 8 ounce of cream cheese, softened 3-4 tablespoons of powdered sugar 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract Graham cracker crumbs (crumble on top)

Directions: 1. Rinse strawberries and cut out the top of the strawberry. Clean out with a paring knife. Prep all strawberries and set aside. 2. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Add cream cheese mix to a piping bag or zip lock with the corner snipped off. Fill strawberries with cheesecake mixture. 3. Once strawberries are filled, dip or sprinkle the tops in graham cracker crumbs. If not serving immediately, refrigerate until serving.

Reese's Brownies Ingredients:


1 box of brownie mix

1. Following the directions on the brownie mix, combine all ingredients (brownie mix, eggs, oil and water) until the batch is smooth. Oven should be preheated to around 350˚. 2. In a muffin tin, place paper wrappings. In each, add 1 Reese's Miniature and pour the brownie mix on top. 3. After done baking, let them cool before you unwrap.

eggs oil water 1 package of Reese’s Miniatures

Photos by Adrianna Montano

Get your quick fix

kiosk is right outside the bcc bookstore

New releases 28 days before redbox!

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from Quick Flicks DVDs!

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

The Vine

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Grammy Award-winning jazz musician wows a Friday night crowd


By Kelsey Guerin Vine Editor

Photos from Columbia Artists Management Website. As a Grammy Award-winning jazz pianist, Chucho Valdés is calm and cool and lets the music speak for itself.

n Saturday evening, jazz enthusiasts from the Fairfield community gathered at the Quick Center to listen to an incredible performance by the world famous Chucho Valdés and the Afro-Cuban Messengers. “I’ve been excited about this evening since the program was announced last season,” said Adrienne Bryant, the assistant director of programming and audience development. “It’s not every evening that you get a true icon, a true legend on your stage, not just of jazz or of Latin jazz, but of music.” The crowd at the Quick Center was slightly older, with representation from current Fairfield students mostly absent. But as the audience trickled in and viewed the set up of the stage—complete with a piano, three different sets of drums, a cello and a bass—the auditorium began to buzz with excitement. Valdés has an impressive music career spanning over 50 years. Born in 1941 in Havana, Cuba, Valdés started playing songs on the piano by ear at the age of three and formed his first jazz ensemble at 15. He became a professional musician in the early 1960s when he worked as a pianist for the Martí Theatre, International Salon of the Havana Riviera Hotel and the Musical Theatre of the Havana Orchestra. In 1973, Valdés founded the group Irakere, which was widely heralded for combining jazz, rock, classical and Cuban styles and became hugely influential in Cuban music. He formed his current group, Chucho Valdés and the Afro-Cuban Messengers, in 2009 and recorded his most recent album “Chucho’s Steps” with them. Valdés has won five Grammy Awards and three Latin Grammy Awards for his

work. A little after 8 p.m., Valdés shuffled onto the stage of the Quick Center to tremendous applause. A tall, older man wearing a purple checkered shirt and purple hat, his presence was unassuming to say the least. He took a humble bow, seated himself at the piano and immediately started on what at first appeared to be a slow, relaxing song. Suddenly, blasts from the two brass players, tenor saxophonist Carlos Manuel Miyares Hernandez and trumpeter Reinaldo Melián Álvarez, jolted the audience into a fast-paced, energetic performance incorporating all members of the band. After several minutes of enthusiastic performing, the song ended just as abruptly as it began, a short beat of shocked silence hanging in the air before the audience erupted into applause. Although this inaugural song took a sudden energetic twist, there were several others in the program that remained slower and more soulful the entire time. One song in particular featured the lead vocalist Mayra Caridad Valdés, Chucho’s sister who teamed up with him in 1994. Her rich, deep voice complimented the instruments beautifully and lulled the audience into a near trance. The program only included around 10 songs over the hour and a half that Valdés and his band performed, but each of these songs was extremely unique and showcased the talents of all members of the group at different points. In one song, bassist Lázaro Rivero Alarcón grooved in an impressive rundown of chords that was at points reminiscent of legendary guitarist Robert Johnson’s

“Crossroad Blues.” Drummers Juan Carlos Rojas Castro, Yaroldy Abreu Robels and Dreiser Durruthy Bambolé each performed mind-bogglingly fast solos on their various sets. The brass players Hernandez and Álvarez added a sultry smooth quality to some songs and brought life and energy to others. Perhaps the most intriguing part of the evening, though, was Valdés himself. Throughout most of the performance, he sat at the piano with the same apparent attachment as a man sitting at the bus stop, stoic expression on his face as though the energy and skill behind his playing wasn’t completely astounding. Occasionally, his virtuosic runs and rapid trills on the piano would stir him to energetically stomp his foot to the beat, but for the most part, he calmly surveyed his band and the audience. His tranquil demeanor was at complete odds with his lively, fast and skilled playing, clearly choosing to let his music “speak” for him. The last song of the program brought the audience to their feet, cheering and yelling for an encore. Not one to disappoint, Valdés and his band reassumed the stage and ended the evening with another high energy performance that had all audience members clapping along and dancing in their seats. Vocalist Mayra even had the entire audience scatting along with her in a call-and-response. When this final song ended, Chucho Valdés and the Afro-Cuban Messengers bowed to the audience with huge smiles. They gratefully applauded each other and the still cheering crowd, finally exiting the stage with just as much humility as when they entered.

Upcoming Music Shows Nearby


New York Hall of Science, Feb. 9 Queens , NY Icelandic model, composer and singer Björk is celebrated for her eclectic musical style and her ethereal voice. Her top hits include: "Human Behavior" and "Army of Me."

Blake Shelton

Herman's Hermit and Peter Noone

Fairfield University Quick Center, Feb. 14 Rock 'n Roll legends will perform a special Valentine's Day concert for the public. Tickets are $55 and $44.

Mohegan Sun, Feb. 26 Uncasville, CT Blake Shelton, the only country singer judge on NBC talent show "The Voice," will perform on Feb. 26 at Mohegan Sun, with "Voice" runner-up Dia Frampton. His top hits include: Contributed Photos

The Vine

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

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"Smash" raises bar for musical drama shows By Annemarie Veira Staff Writer


he new musical drama from NBC “Smash” is about the lives of the many people that are a part of creating, producing and performing a new Broadway show about Marilyn Monroe. The show focuses on three main women: Karen (Katharine McPhee, "American Idol"), who is a struggling actress trying to get her big break on the Great White Way, Julia (Debra Messing, "Will and Grace"), who is the writer of the show, and Eileen (Anjelica Huston), who is the producer. In the pilot that aired on Feb. 6 at 10 p.m., the story premiered with each of the women facing difficult points in their lives. Karen has moved to New York City from Iowa and is working as a waitress. After she is rejected from yet another audition, she begins to lose her faith in the business. Julia has decided to take a year off, along with her writing partner Tom, so that she can focus on her family and specifically work toward adopting a child. Eileen, a powerful producer, is now suffering through a divorce from her equally powerful husband. Having lost everything including her reputation around the theater district, Eileen is forced to

rebuild while handling legal issues. It is through Tom and Tom’s assistant Ellis that the idea for a Marilyn musical forms. Eileen becomes involved after hearing about the musical by word of mouth because she wants to produce a project on her own away from her husband. Karen also hears about the musical and auditions for the part. However, there is a catch. Julia and Tom began to write the musical's songs with the help of Ivy Lynn, another young actress who is a part of their currently running show “Heaven on Earth.” Initially Julia and Tom intended to use the show to boost Ivy Lynn to stardom, but motives and choices are questioned when Karen auditions and knocks it out of the park. It is the creation of the show, as well as the personal lives of each of the three leading women, that really propel the show forward. It was nice to see an original show come from NBC that didn’t have too many issues. The triple story arcs melding into one was well executed, and McPhee's acting in particular was impressive and believable. However, there were a few things I wished they hadn’t done in the pilot. First was starting off with the song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” I know this has been one of McPhee’s signature songs since her

days on "American Idol," but there must be a better song the producers of the show could have picked to showcase her voice. The only other major gripe about Karen's character is her cliché background and current employment position. Karen comes from a small town in the heartland of America, she moves to the city for her big break and her parents aren’t totally supportive of her dream of becoming an actor. While she works to make her dreams come true, she waitresses. This character has been seen hundreds of times before in television and film. Aside from "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," the musical choices and dance numbers were amazing and nothing like Fox's "Glee" where people frequently burst into song. This show's music will only take place in the context of the Marilyn musical, it seems. I do have some reservations about the show. Since the pilot first aired online, will that drive down the numbers in ratings? I have to admit that the show has decent placement on the schedule with "The Voice" as a lead in, but the show is still up against heavy competition on CBS and ABC. "Smash" has been worth the hype thus far, and I can’t wait to see more. Definitely check it out on Mondays at 10 p.m. on NBC.

Contributed Photo

American Idol runner-up and successful singer-songer writer Katharine McPhee stars as a waitress hoping for a break in the musical Broadway industry.

The Vine

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

"The Descendants" is worth the Oscar Buzz

Wizard becomes widow in new horror film By Jeannine Nocera Contributing Writer


Contributed Photo

"The Descendants" is a dramedy film about a man raising his teenaged daughter while making amends with his dead wife who he discvoered was cheating on him. By Annemarie Veira Staff Writer


t has been over a month and the film from Fox Searchlight Pictures is still doing well in the box office. As of last week, the film has grossed worldwide an estimated $110,323,000. Why? After seeing this picture, I now understand the hype. The film directed by Alexander Payne ("Sideways") and starring George Clooney and Shailene Woodley ("The Secret Life of the American Teenager") was based on the novel of the same title by Kaui Hart Hemmings. Classified as a drama and comedy, the film follows the life of Matt King (Clooney), who is a successful lawyer and one of the last direct descendants of Hawaiian royalty. Matt is faced with a challenge as one of the last descendants of royalty and the single trustee to one of the few remaining large pieces of land in Hawaii: he has to decide whether to sell the land, and to whom. This problem pales in comparison when Matt is told that his wife Elizabeth, who has been in a coma due to a boating accident, will be in a permanent vegetative state while

on life support. Following her living will, Matt removes the life support and has to break the news to his family as well as his friends. What is already a painful situation increases tenfold when Matt tells the news to Alex (Woodley), the eldest of his two daughters who has been on the outs with her mother and was living at boarding school. She tells her father that her rebellious behavior and the rift that drove her and her mother apart was a response to having learned that her mother was having an affair. Matt is sidelined by the news. After consulting with his wife’s two closet friends, who reveal to him that Elizabeth wanted a divorce and to be with another man named Brian Speer (Lillard), Matt has to decide if he will break the news to Elizabeth's lover. Kai, Elizabeth’s best friend, admits that Elizabeth truly loved Speer. Matt also knew that their marriage was strained and had wanted to make amends with his wife after her recovery. Since her recovery is no longer possibile, Matt decides to make his amends with Elizabeth in her death. With the support of his two daughters Alex and Scottie, the family travel to Kaui from Oahu in

order to find Elizabeth’s lover and break the news. Matt states that his reason for telling Brian is, “On the phone, he can escape. In person, he’s got nowhere to go. I want to see his face.” The film is currently nominated for several Oscars: Best Picture, Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role, Best Achievement in Directing, Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay) and Best Achievement in Editing. Visually the film is amazing, personifying the situation with the brilliant cinematography of their locations throughout Hawaii. Another strength is the storyline. It is very dramatic, but when paired with such witty dialogue and timing, the film has you laughing and crying throughout the experience. Overall, the film isn’t about the tragedy of the family, but rather what it means to be a family and to be loyal to its ideals and values. Matt and Alex travel on a journey to understand what it means to be a descendant of a particular family, and they try to cope with both the challenges of legacy and the consequences of one’s choices. I highly recommend this film, and I can see Oscar gold in its future.

Right Bite: Stamford's Sushi X By Richard O'Connor Staff Writer


here are a lot of sushi restaurants to choose from when you’re looking in Fairfield, but if you’re not adverse to a little traveling, head to Sushi X in downtown Stamford for sushi on a budget. Sushi X is on 109 Atlantic St., just off exit 7 of I-95 and seated between the nightlife hotspots of Bedford St. and Main St. It is a perfect place to grab some sushi before a night on the town. The interior takes a tasteful

modern approach, with stone on one wall, red brick on the opposing wall, multi-colored ambient light lining the perimeter, flatscreen TVs and wooden tables and chairs parceled about. The menu here doesn’t vary in any way from other sushi restaurants, having all the classics like the California Roll, Shrimp Tempura and Edamame, as well as specialty rolls like the “X” Roll, which is tuna, salmon and yellowtail wrapped in seaweed and deep fried. And while you can order a la carte, the real deal here lies in their all you can eat special. For $19.99 on Monday-

Thursday and $21.99 on FridaySunday, you can have an unlimited amount of appetizers, sushi, and even dessert. But keep watch as to how much food is ordered and follow the mantra written on the menu stating, "Order all you want, but eat all you order,” or else you’ll be paying for the leftovers. They even offer an all you can drink sake for $7.99 for the 21 and over crowd. The food here is decent, but some things about Sushi X can throw you off a bit. There seems to be a separation between the thoughtful décor and presenta-

Page 15

hrough the spaces between my fingers, I fell in love with the horror film that is "The Woman in Black." This movie caught my attention immediately when I saw that Daniel Radcliffe was the starring actor. Seeing him not in his Hogwarts attire made things a little difficult, but to see his acting skills in a different genre made this movie even more enjoyable. Arthur Kipps (Radcliffe) is a widower, who lost his wife during child birth, who is soon to lose his job. His last hope to keep his job at his law firm is to prove to his boss that he is able to work even though he is a complete and total wreck while trying to get over his death of his wife as well as raise his four year old son, Joseph (Misha Handley). This is his final chance and all he has to do is go through paperwork at a house in a small town near London. Sounds pretty simple, but of course things are never as they seem. Arthur travels to the small village where right away he is not welcomed. The village gives off a spinetingling and ominous feeling that radiates fear and suspense into the audience. Everyone in the village has been anything but welcoming to him besides one man, who is determined to help him with his work as well as feel comfortable in this cursed town. In only four days, Arthur is left to complete a good deal of work, until he is confronted by a woman outside the house covered in black. Of course, this seems strange and he knows nothing about this woman, yet he soon finds out that whenever the woman has been spotted, a child in the town is killed

in some sort of cruel and unusual manner. Unable to fulfill his purpose of traveling to this daunting village, Arthur is prepared to confront this woman who has cursed this town and will make sure that this town’s children are safe before his son comes to visit him. Yet, with only an axe and a candle, what can a young lawyer really do against a ghost? The movie, something that I went into the theater thinking that this was going to be a piece of cake, easy to watch PG-13 movie, I was proven that this was anything but that. It wasn’t truly a horrific movie, rather it was very suspenseful that kept you on the edge of your seat wanting to see what was going to happen in this haunted house or maybe sink deep into your chair, wishing that it would become day time again so Arthur would finally leave that house. Constantly, I was screaming due to great effects that scared you with birds flying into the screen, in addition to ghouls and dead children popping in and out of scenes. This movie was definitely a great movie, with a surprising plot line that is not revealed in the trailers, and will make any Harry Potter fan love Daniel Radcliffe more than they already do. The only difficult for me as viewer and new movie reviewer was that I had to force myself to not want to get my mind set in the idea that at any point, Daniel Radcliffe was going to pull out a wand and that when the door wouldn’t open, screaming Alohomora at the screen was going to do absolutely nothing, yet the woman in black did a great job distracting me from not only seeing him as Harry Potter but as well as discovering that every town and every house, truly does have skeletons in the closet.

Contributed Photo

tion of the sushi and sashimi dishes when compared to the lackluster appetizers and kitchen items. The miso soup I ordered was lukewarm and forgettable, and the red snapper jalapeño was plated in such a way that I reconsidered its palatability: a slice of snapper covered in oil (I think?) with a few dices of jalapeno. However, when the sushi roll arrangement arrived, it was as if we’d ordered from a different restaurant. All the rolls ordered came on one large platter, set in rows adjacent to one another. There was a range of vibrant colors, with a nice green from the avocado topping the Dragon Roll, the pink of the soybean paper wrapping the

Butterfly Roll and the orange of the Spicy Salmon rolls. Once you think you’ve gotten your fill of sushi, it's time to move on to the dessert course, where you can order an assortment of fresh fruit, fried banana and a choice of vanilla, green tea or red bean ice cream. Sushi X is a great place to go to get your sushi fix on the cheap. If there has ever been a time when you wanted to try a certain roll or get a little adventurous with your taste buds, Sushi X’s all you can eat menu certainly encourages you to do so. When making the trip to Stamford for a night out, this should be the starting point.

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


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Coffee Break | 16

Editor Gabriella Tutino»

His iPhone / Her BlackBerry Annoyed By... Megan Forbes Joe McConville

Seeing as I had a rough week I’m going to take this column to write about things that annoy college guys. Extensively collected and researched, it covers everything that should be avoided in order to not annoy a bro. Guys hate anyone other than ourselves wearing a sleeveless shirt. The most comfortable and arguably the best type of shirt in the world, tends to come with the stipulation that the wearer is one of the ‘tough guy’ grouping. If it were socially acceptable to wear sleeveless around in everyday life I would do it in a heartbeat. Sun’s out guns out. Nicholas Sparks. It’s not natural for one man to be able to harness so many emotions in one book. That being said, ladies, I enjoyed ‘The Notebook’ and cried at the end. Girls love that emotional touchy feely crap that we gentlemen suck at expressing. Watch any of Nick’s movies with her and she’ll be emotionally vulnerable. Just like when George Washington crossed the Delaware, she’ll never see it coming. People who hate Liam Neeson. The man is a one man army, the embodiment of every male virtue. If you hate him you probably hate America. Just like Nicholas Sparks who is able to speak with emotions, Mr. Neeson speaks with his fists and actions. I have a theory that in every single movie Liam Neeson is in, he has a one liner that is so perfectly fitting it can barely be contained. The man’s

a B.A.M.F. Stonewall-text-messages are also the worst. How am I supposed to respond to “lol” or “I know”? If you want to talk then talk, there’s no need to brainstorm of things to say. Blackboard, Eidos, and Mentor all need to be combined into one website and all the teachers need to use it. I am tired of having one class on Mentor, while another is on Blackboard. Combine them, probably save the school a couple grand right there. Likewise, teachers need to learn to respond to emails better. If you’re sent a paragraph long email, I guarantee you cannot solve everything asked of you or expressed in a single sentence. We know you’re busy, but we don’t want to spend time cleaning up what you missed just because you couldn’t slow down and finish reading an email. Fish in Barone. Seriously, as much as I enjoy eating fish this should never happen. I’ve watched my roommate puke up a serving of catfish back onto his plate after trying to eat it. I beg you, please don’t serve us fish. Hopefully this short list of things that annoy college bros will enlighten you a little and make the world a better place or something corny like that. On another note, by the time you’re reading this I’ll either be happy or angry with the Patriots. So I’ll end on a neutral point, saying I hope everyone had a fun Super Bowl.

- Sent from my iPhone

As I sat at work the other day, I realized that girls really hate a wide variety of things. If you actually think about it, how many times a day does a girl say “Oh my gosh, I hate that?” So, I thought it would be entertaining to sit down and write down all the things that I, as a college gal, hate. Monday’s. And all the other days that are not Friday or Saturday. Who really likes the end of the weekend? Monday gives us a chance for us to put our lives back into order from the tornados of weekends we have here. And honestly, who wants to sit there on Monday and think about where we lost our dignity? We hate any alcoholic drink that is not coconut flavored, or a light beer. Whiskey is probably the most hated. And if you’re a girl and enjoy drinking whiskey, I give you props. Even the smell of a Jack and Coke is enough to make me vom. Leading directly from this, girls hate hangovers. We love drinking. We love dancing. But we hate the aftermath. The walk to Barone is treacherous. Getting into the shower and taking off the make-up from the night before is a chore. And the sickening feeling in the pit of our stomachs makes us want to scream at anyone that could potentially get on our nerves. If we’re hung-over, just leave us be. People who don’t text back immediately. This gets me. I know you have your phone.

Texting is supposed to make quick conversations easier. Quit playing Temple Run and message me back. We also hate texting a guy first. Seriously, you know we’re biting our nails off to hear back from you. Don’t make us wait. It’s not cute. Oh, here’s a good one: when guys talk about sports or cars when you’re with them. We get it. You like football and you like your Mercedes. Would you like me to talk about my Michael Kors collection and my adventure to the tanning salon? I didn’t think so. Save that conversation for when my mind does not have to be a part of it. Girls hate Valentine’s Day. If a girl has a significant other, she pretends to hate the holiday just to not seem sappy, and to try to relate to her single friends. A lot of single girls despise the holiday. Who wants a holiday to celebrate a love that you don’t have? We also hate it because we’re usually so disappointed on Valentine’s Day, and wind up eating an entire giant heart of chocolate, #packingonthepounds. Other little random things? Dirty bathrooms. Arrogant people. People who walk too slow, along with people who walk too fast. Uncomfortable heels. Fake designer bags. When Barone has nothing good to eat. Having no guy readily available to watch a romantic comedy. Now the question is, what do girls actually like? - Sent from my BlackBerry









The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

Page 17

This Week in Sports The week that was in Fairfield Athletics

What To Watch For

Sports Shorts

Wednesday- No games.

Men's Swimming- Sophomore Kevin Greener broke a 10-year program record in the 1500m freestyle with a time of 17:11:70 on Saturday. The Stags defeated NJIT in the final dual meet of the season. The team went 5-4 in dual meets this season. Women's Swimming- Two Stags set personal records in Women's Swimming's victory over NJIT. Cacky Keating won the 400m freestlye with a 4:42:46 personal best. Teresa Garrity placed second in the 50m freestyle with a personal best time of 29:96 seconds. Men's Tennis- Freshman Cameron Amyot had the deciding victory in the 4-3 victory over Boston University on Saturday. Amyot defeated his opponent 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 after all other singles matches had finished playing. Women’s Tennis- The Stags did not drop a single set as they crushed University of Hartford 7-0 on Saturday. Their next match will be against Hofstra University on February 10th.

New Sports Blog

Thursday- Men's Basketball vs. Manhattan, 7:30 p.m. Friday- Women's Basketball at Marist, 7 p.m. Saturday- Men's Tennis vs. Villanova, 7:30 p.m. Sunday- Women's Basketball at Loyola, 12 p.m. Men's Basketball at Loyola, 4 p.m Monday- No games. Tuesday- No games.

By The Numbers


Junior guard Derek Needham scored a careerhigh 32 points in the Stags victory over Niagara this past Friday.


The Women's tennis team won convincingly in 14 sets in their 7-0 victory over Hartford last Saturday.


Women's basketball player Lexi Vazquez is ranked first nationally in three-point field goal percentage.

Quote of the Week

Make sure to check out our new Sports Blog with online-only coverage at, as well as featured sports videos.

“We are playing unselfishly and playing for each other by sharing the ball, working hard defensively, and covering for each other if there’s a mistake. It is very clear there is a difference from who we are now compared to earlier in the season.” –said Men's Basketball coach Sydney Johnson when commenting on the strides his team has made this season.

Sports 3x5 Because they like to talk... Sports.

Eric Bernsen Sports Editor

Ivey Speight Contributing Writer

J ohn Tessitore Assistant Sports Editor

Your 2011-2012 3x5 Columnists: Eric Bernsen, Ivey Speight and John Tessitore.

Your response to what was a wild Super Bowl weekend?

Valentine's Day is coming up next week. Any special plans for the elite 3x5 crew?

Men's basketball on a three-game winning streak. Will they keep it going against Manhattan?

Wyoming Cowboys' huge win over UNLV last weekend. Have at it, Assistant.

Most barked in-class moment early on in this semester?

Lots of ups and downs, that's for sure. Couple more holes in the wall but the swag stays intact. And now home is where the bar is sssssssss.

Bed Bath and Beyond is tempting, but something tells me I'm going to be preoccupied for most of the day. Legendary 3x5 creep swag never dies sss.

Stags continue to their winning ways and get revenge on the Jaspers. Look for Needham to post Jeremy Lin-esque numbers nanana niiicks.

Cowboy Superfan John Tess couldn't have been more pumped. Now let's see if he can beat Ordway in a 40-yard dash nananananana

Doesn't get much more barked than the back row 3x5 legends. Most surped game of telephone I've ever played in my life ssssss.

Giant fandom has gone up 200 percent until next year when they all want to fire Tom Coughlin (half of the new Giant fans can Google who he is).

No girl has been smart enough to catch the small man...But good news I'm holding auditions upstairs at the TH if anyone dares to try

Needham and Sanders looks like Kobe and Shaq. Beeee looking out for Erin Andrews in the stands with a Jasper hoodie LITEEE

Happens to all his teams. Gives him hope until they fall. Come March Madness, Tess will be in his room alone drowning his sorrows surping rum and coke

Simon asking a question about truth in news reporting and somehow Tess the Mess connects it to Rider basketball.


Well, first I'm taking Ivey to Bed Bath and Beyond, then I'm buying him milkshakes at Johnny Rocket's. For the first time in 3 years Bernsen won't be joining us ...SMH Girl Problems

Stags 'bout to rattle off 14 straight to the Final 4. Reminiscent of the legendary 1934 Wyoming Cowboys. Can't wait till Needham drops 30.

WYOMING IS BACK– looking like 1934 again when Kenny Sailors gave the Cowboys their lone NCAA title! Most amped I've been since we pwnd Dan Dickau in '02!!!!!!!!!!!

HUHU gotta be Bernsen Talking to LZ Granderson! B-Keg has no politics swag! WYOMING HOOPS IS BACK! FINAL four Stags Cowboys LEGOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012


Page 18

'Home Is Where the Heart Is'

Women's Basketball Continues to Impress

Aisha Faulkner/The Mirror

Above: Sophomore Katie Cizynskii in shooting form against a defender. Bottom Right: Sophomore Christelle Akon-Akech driving the ball, the Stags are riding an impressive seven game winning streak.

By Ivey Speight Contributing Writer Home is where the wins are for the Fairfield University Women’s Basketball team. The squad is currently undefeated at Alumni Hall in the 2011-2012 season and have not dropped a game on campus since January 16, 2011! “The girls have done just a great job here at home,” said fifth-year head coach Joe Frager. “If you want to be a successful team and challenge the upper echelon of the league at the end of the year you have to protect your home floor and we’ve done that so far." Nevertheless, the Stags have been successful wherever they play this year. They are currently tied atop the MAAC standings with an 11-1 record while riding a seven game win streak. In fact, Fairfield has only suffered losses to the national powerhouse UCONN Huskies and the first-place Red Foxes in their last 17 games. “I think if you asked a lot of people before the season started if this group would be 11-1, I don’t think you would’ve gotten too many takers,” said Frager. “I think we showed a great deal of character a great deal of

heart so far, I’m really proud of where we are so far.” As surprising as this team has been this year, it is equally shocking as to one of the reasons why. The Stags have seen the emergence of sophomore Alexys Vazquez, who last year only hit 8 three pointers. This year she has statistically become the best long-range shooter in the nation! “She’s got really good shooting form; she can really shoot the ball, but I think confidence has gotten in to her once she settled into her starting role,” said Frager. “That’s an offense we’re working on. Don’t execute for 25 seconds, throw it to Lex and let her shoot it from 28 feet.” “I don’t really think about that. I just make sure we get the win and try to hit all the shots I take,” said Vasquez. She is currently shooting an unheard of 50 percent from behind the arc. The squad is going to need her to continue at a similar rate as they embark on their most challenging part of the season so far. The Super Bowl may be over, but the Stags are still waiting to play their biggest game of the regular season as they take on Marist for first place on Friday night. “I definitely think they are

looking forward to that…we just need to understand it’s not going to be easy. It’s going to be a grind,” said Frager. “It’s a tough stretch but as a coach I’m happy we’ve taken care of business to date.” They will try to adopt the New York Giants' old motto and become ‘Road Warriors’ as they play five of their last six games away from home. “That’s kind of tough, I wasn’t real thrilled when I saw that when the schedule came out, but it is what it is,” said Frager. The Stags will try and take down the ‘Giants’ of the MAAC in the six-straight MAAC Champions Marist. Frager and the Stags know that if they want to end the Red Foxes streak, they are going to have to find wins away from the comforts of home. “If we aspire to do really special things, we've got to play tough on the road,” said Frager.


The Mirror | Week of February 8, 2012

Page 19

Your Fairfield Stags in Action Photos by Tom McKiver and Aisha Faulkner Layout by Mikaela Tierney and Eric Bernsen

Online New and improved sports blog. Online only coverage. Week of February 8, 2012

Sports | 20

Sports Editor: Eric Bernsen »

Men's Basketball Fighting off MAAC Challengers

Aisha Faulkner/The Mirror

Guard Colin Nickerson dives on the court while trying to gain control of the ball against a Niagara defender. Fairfield is a on a three-game winning streak going into Thursday's match-up against Manhattan.

By John Tessitore Assistant Sports Editor

Analyzing the Stags It has been a bit of a roller coaster for the 20112012 version of the Fairfield Stags. Currently, the Stags sit at 4th place in the MAAC with an 8-4 conference record and a 13-10 overall mark. The Stags have seven games remaining, and more importantly, six conference games are on slate.

Ability to Close Out Games When I look at this team, I see a lot of experience and a lot of talent. However, in their losses I do not see a whole lot of chemistry and leadership down the stretch. In the Stag's 53-51 loss at Manhattan in early January, Fairfield led by seven points with 7:15 left in the game. Over the final seven minutes, the Stags mustered only three points, and hit one field goal while the Jaspers closed the game out on a 12-3 run. The worst part about this game was the fact that it seemed like a switch turned off for the Stags. They were playing not to lose rather than staying aggressive for the full 40 minutes. Just five days later, the Stags took on Loyola, and the result was all too familiar. Fairfield jumped all over the Greyhounds and earned a commanding 15 point lead with just under 15 minutes to play thanks to some great team basketball. However, once again in crunch time, the Stags buckled and saw a 15 point lead evaporate in a heartbreaking 66-63 loss for the Stags. Over the final five minutes, Fairfield only managed to score 5 points and hit one field goal. No one wanted to take the big shot for the Stags. The most exruciating part about these losses is that if Fairfield had hung on, they would be a 1/2 game out of first place in the MAAC. Instead, they trail Manhattan (10-3) by a game and a half, and Loyola, (11-2), by two and a half games. The good news for Fairfield is that they get a second crack against Manhattan at home on Thursday and another chance at Loyola on Sunday. One thing that fans have to remember is that it takes TIME to gel and mesh as a team. Anytime you have a highly touted coach and two big-time transfers being integrated to your lineup, it can be challenging to figure out who your leader is and you have to learn how to win as a team. This comes with time and close game experience. The wins against Rider and Niagara demonstrates that this team is growing and trusting each other more and more. They withstood both teams’ runs, hit a few big shots, and came out with two important MAAC wins.

Looking at the Losses by the Numbers In the Stags' four MAAC losses, pre-season 1st team AllMAAC guard Derek Needham is only averaging 6.25 points per game and 4.5 assists. Prior to this season, Needham was not held under 7 points ONCE in his career in MAAC play! Now, if you look at Needham in the Stags' eight conference wins, he is putting up 16.9 points per game to go with 4.25 assists per contest. Wow. It is fair to say that as Needham goes, so do the Stags. In the Stags four MAAC losses, they shot a combined 35.4 percent from the field while in their 8 wins; the Stags have shot 50.4 percent from the floor. As simple as it may sound, when the Stags hit their open shots and knock down threes, (a whopping 55 percent, 33-60 in their past 3 games), they are capable of beating anybody in the MAAC. The Stags have made a habit of solid defensive effort, as once again they lead the MAAC in scoring defense only giving up 62.3 points per game. Simply put, it has been the inconsistent offensive play that has plagued Fairfield over the course of this season.

What to Expect This is a very good and very dangerous Fairfield team. As we learned from St. Peters' magical MAAC Tournament run last year, and the New York Giants this year, it's all about getting hot at the right time. Believe it or not, these losses to Iona, Siena, Manhattan and Loyola are probably the best thing for the Stags. It puts a chip on the players’ shoulders and gives them that extra motivation to beat these teams the second time around. They are no longer the hunted during this final stretch of the season; they are the hunters and this is a role that works in favor of the Stags. Fairfield has seven games left, and if they win in the remaining games it will be their third consecutive 20-win season. However, winning out will not be an easy feat. Five of the final seven games will be played on the road, and three of the seven contests will come against the top three MAAC teams whom the Stags are 0-3 against. Fairfield has a great opportunity to prove what they are capable of and get hot at the right time. Derek Needham is starting to play the best basketball of his career while Desmond Wade, Needham and Rakim Sanders are really starting to look in sync offensively. Although it will certainly be a challenging task, finishing the season in second or third place is not out of the question for the Stags. If Fairfield can sweep the Manhattan/ Loyola series this weekend, there is a chance that we may be looking at a three-way tie for second by Sunday night. Loyola and Manhattan (who are in 2nd and 3rd place respectively) still have to play each other and Loyola has the pleasure of

hosting Iona as well as Fairfield this weekend. Although Iona seems like the clear favorite to take the regular season title, the MAAC is turning into a very intriguing four-team race. After this weekend, Fairfield hosts St. Peters and then travels to Milwaukee for their Bracketbuster game against Horizon league foe UW-Milwaukee. The Stags end the season with a brutal stretch of road games at Marist, Iona and Rider. Things are really starting to heat up in the MAAC, but so are the Stags. Winners of five of their last six, the Stags have put themselves in a position to potentially still win the MAAC, but it will take a lot of work. As we learned last year, the most important three games of the year occur at the MAAC tournament in Springfield, MA. How the Stags finish their last seven games will be a very good indicator of things to come in early March. It is time to either rise to the occasion, or fall into the middle pack of the MAAC. This stretch will test the will power and leadership of the Stags. Let the games begin.

Three Keys to the End of the Season Which Derek Needham will we see? –Can Derek continue the stellar play he had the past weekend where he averaged over 25 points per game? Or will he fall back down to earth? Don’t expect Derek to put up 32 every night, but expect an increase in scoring and assists if the Stags want to make a run. Will Ryan Olander get his offense back? –Over the past four games, Ryan has only averaged 3.5 points per game. Although he is one of the best defenders in the MAAC, he has to regain his confidence on the offensive side of the ball. He has such a nice touch and if he gets it going it will add another offensive weapon to the Stags arsenal. Can the Stags continue to develop chemistry? –Right now it is fair to say the Stags have been playing their best basketball of the year, but the consistency needs to continue. Desmond Wade has really stepped up and is starting to establish himself as an offensive threat in the MAAC. The team looks like they are having fun out there, and wins have been the result. We will see how much this team has grown this weekend. Colin Nickerson and Sean Crawford –Nickerson and Crawford are two of my favorite players to watch. If Nickerson can continue to play well defensively and get the occasional bucket, he adds a whole other element to the Stags. The same goes for Crawford. If he can continue to hit the clutch three when he is called upon, he can be the sniper that the Stags need to get to the next level.

Prediction for the Rest of the Season 18-12 (13-5 MAAC) which will be good for 3rd place.

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