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THE UNIVERSITY OF VICTORIA’S INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPER SEPTEMBER 15, 2011 • VOLUME 64 • ISSUE 6 • MARTLET.CA

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NEWS

We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world. – Howard Zinn

UVSS elections to be held online The Board of Directors voted to use UVic’s Webvote system in the next general election > Kailey Willetts The UVic Students’ Society (UVSS) Board of Directors voted Monday evening to officially move to online elections. The UVSS began its transition to online elections after a spring referendum showed more than 81 per cent of voters are in favour of the switch. “After a lot of consultation with both outside companies that provide online elections and the university, the board has decided to go with a modified version of the UVic Webvote system,” said UVSS Chairperson Tara Paterson. “Because of time constraints, it won’t be available for our referendums in November, but it will be used in our next general elections in March.” The UVic Webvote system is currently used to elect students to the UVic Senate and Board of Governors. It will cost the student society a one-time fee of approximately $8 000 to implement online elections. Chris Gillespie, who worked as the lead deputy electoral officer during the spring general election, says moving elections online could be a positive change if done correctly. “I think monetarily it’s an excellent decision. Environmentally it’s an excellent decision. Overall, I think it’s a good move, but I do have concerns,” he said. “It depends on how well the election is advertised. If we do not have electoral stations on campus that students can come and vote at and they’re just expected to go to this vague website to vote on their own, we will end up with elections that are similar to the Senate. So if the UVSS is hoping to have a popular turnout on this, they do need to ensure that the elections are still visible to the students and there’s a place that students can actually go to vote.” The Senate and Board of governors elections, which take place entirely online, have an average voter turnout of approximately five per cent. UVSS voter turnout has averaged around 20 per cent in recent years. Paterson confirms there will still be oncampus polling stations, but elections will look a little different. “We haven’t completely developed a policy around it yet, so it’s hard to say [how online voting will change elections],” she said. “However, the likelihood is that we will go to one day of voting and there will still be polling stations around campus for those who need assistance in voting.” Paterson says online voting systems have

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There will far fewer paper ballots to count after the UVSS moves elections online.

pros and cons. “One pro is that they’re paper-free,” she said. “It will also mean it’s a lot easier for students on exchange and distance students to vote in elections and that the results will come in earlier.” According to Paterson, some cons of online voting are the risks of the system being hacked. Recently, the UBC Alma Mater Society experienced security issues during their 2010 election when fraudulent, duplicate ballots were cast using their online voting system. YOU’LL BE MEETING MY FAMILY FOR THE FIRST TIME...

“We have done a lot of work in ensuring that the system we will use will be extremely secure,” she adds. Gillespie expressed no major security concerns with the Webvote system. “From my understanding of the UVic online voting system, it’s a lot more secure than the paper ballots that we’ve had,” he said. Online elections will also likely save the UVSS money. The last general election cost $30 489. Online elections will require fewer poll-sitters and ballot counters. However, Gillespie stressed the importance of having

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adequate elections staff. “I’m concerned that the UVSS will take a lot of money out of the elections budget in order to do these online elections and that there will be insufficient staff to create a proper voting atmosphere for students on campus,” he said. Like what you see? Well, there’s more where this came from! Check out Martlet.ca for exclusive web updates and content or to share your invaluable opinions in our comment section. MEET MY BOYFRIEND STEVE.

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UVSS tackles pass-ups by full buses > Kailey Willetts The UVic Students’ Society (UVSS) is hoping to make bus pass-ups a thing of the past with the second phase of its “Passed Up?” transit campaign. During the morning commute, students on busy routes may be passed up by multiple full buses, which often makes them late for class. Students are one of the Victoria Regional Transit Commission’s biggest stakeholders, contributing $4.8 million through the UPass program between UVic and Camosun, according to UVSS Chairperson Tara Paterson. “Students are major stakeholders, and we’re definitely recognizing our role in pushing for improved transit services,” says Paterson. The first stage of the “Passed Up?” campaign began last September (formerly “Passed up, WTF”). Paterson says the second phase of the campaign calls for more action from students. “We launched the new phase of our “Passed Up, WTF” campaign earlier this week. It’s building on the work that we did last year with our interactive transit map and is now a call to action for students,” she said. “So we have QR codes as well as phone numbers and email addresses available.” The campaign invites students to contact Minister of Transportation Blair Lekstrom and ask the provincial government “to address the underfunding of B.C. Transit and public transit in general and allocate revenue from the Carbon Tax to properly fund public transportation in the Greater Victoria Regional District.” Another QR code enables students to enter a customer service complaint to B.C. Transit. Canadian Auto Workers Union Local 333 (CAW 333) president Ben Williams says the UVSS campaign is “absolutely a good step” in achieving better transit service. “We met with [the UVSS] a few weeks ago, and we’re offering our services in whatever we can do to assist you guys in the pass-ups

Students often get passed up by the Number 14 bus, one of the busiest routes to UVic, on their way to campus.

and get you the correct information,” he said. CAW 333 has been in ongoing talks with B.C. Transit about addressing issues like pass-ups. “The pass-ups are stressful because sometimes the driver feels as if their hands are tied. All they’re able to do is notify the transit

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supervisor that they’ve passed 30 to 40 people, and they just want to get from point A to point B,” he says. “Unfortunately, sometimes they’re just not given the manpower or the equipment for that run.” Williams says public pressure is important in achieving improved transit service.

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

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“The thing that’s disappointing is the planning and scheduling department doesn’t necessarily work hand in hand with the operator. A lot of the time it takes outside pressure to get things to change,” he says. “The best thing is to put pressure on transit from all the other angles, remembering that the operator is only able to do so much.” CAW 333 is supportive to students, says Williams, and reminds students that the operators themselves are not the ones able to make changes to transit. “Basically, the biggest thing I’d just like to say is please for the students to remember when they’re travelling on those buses and there’s issues that arise with pass-ups, please don’t take it out on the operator,” he says. “The operator is only doing the best that he can to get you from point A to point B safely and in a timely fashion. He’s only able to deliver the product that transit gives him the tools to.” However, Williams acknowledges pass-ups are extremely frustrating for students. “We can understand when you’re getting on the bus and you’ve seen three or four buses go by you full, and you’ve paid for your UPass, you want to get on the bus. We can understand you’re frustrated.” Paterson said there are many solutions that could improve bus service and reduce or eliminate pass-ups. Aside from requesting the government shift Carbon Tax revenue to fund transit, the UVSS is also supporting the development of light rail transit. “We’re confident that light rail is one of the sustainable transportation options available today, which is integral in combatting climate change,” says Paterson. “Also, light rail transit would encompass the West Shore, which would then free up a lot of buses, which could increase routes to Camosun and UVic, thus reducing pass-ups and really allowing students to get the most out of their UPass.” Another potential solution is high occupancy vehicle lanes and transit priority lanes. “B.C. Transit would like to improve bus transit, but they don’t have enough funding. So they have a lot of great ideas,” says Paterson. “Our current transit service in Victoria is one of the only services that doesn’t have transit priority lanes, meaning that buses are very slow. It doesn’t incentivize people to get out of their cars and into the bus.”

NEWS


run by students, for students all located in the SUB

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Felicita’s wants to feed one lucky student a free meal a day for an entire year.

Felicita’s kicks off the year with new events > Ella Dalling Let’s be honest. Most undergraduate students love going to a bar that has cheap drink specials, nightly events and, most importantly, is a short drunk-stumble away from home. For many UVic students, that bar is Felicita’s. Named after a janitor who worked at the Student Union Building, the bar has been quenching thirsts and feeding bellies since its opening in 1963. It’s a classic: an on-campus pub with a hint of Saved By The Bell atmosphere. This year, Felicita’s is on the hunt for its first Felicita’s ambassador, and they’re hosting a contest to find the right person for the job. The Felicita’s ambassador will be responsible for increasing the pub’s exposure to the student population. Along with the job, the ambassador will receive free event tickets and one free meal every day from Felicita’s. In order to enter the contest, students must upload on Facebook a video explaining why they should be chosen as Felicita’s ambassador. From there, students can vote on their favourite video, and the one with the most “likes” wins. “This is the first time we have ever done something like this, so it should be good,” says

Felicita’s manager, Candace Vandermark. “We are looking for someone outgoing and loud, who will really hype Felicita’s up.” This semester, Felicita’s has a bunch of activities and events going on for students to take part in. They are also giving away prizes, including a scooter donated by Phillips Brewery. Every night is a different event. For example, Monday nights are “Jamaroke night” featuring local band The Party on High Street. (Imagine Karaoke but with a live band behind you backing you up.) “They just host so many events and have crazy cheap drink specials; it is really the best place a student can go for a deal,” says secondyear student Chelsea Graham, who attended last week’s Welcome Back party at Felicita’s. “It’s also a great place to run into old friends.” On top of Felicita’s weekly events they’re also hosting a few parties this month to kick the semester off right. And their hard work providing a space for students to kick back and relax seems to be paying off. Along with all the new events, Felicita’s will still be hosting old favourites like UVic Idol and Battle of the Bands. “It’s going to be a fun year because we have so much planned,” said Vandermark. “I just hope I can keep up with all the action.

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WHAT’S HAPPENING?

Talking to students: tell us your thoughts >Jon-Paul Zacharias Here is an idea. What if the people on campus told the Martlet what they wanted to read about? What if you told the Martlet stories about yourselves? We want to know what you, the students, want to read about, and want to provide you with somewhere you can tell your story. Would you want to read this? Would you want to tell us your stories? Here is what some people said.

Q: What do you want to read about in the Martlet? Any ideas?

Q: What if we talked to people on campus, and found out what they’re doing, and they told us stories, and if they were interesting we’d print them. Would that work? Probably! I don’t have any stories for you off the top of my head, but it seems like a good idea. – Guy outside of Cadboro Commons More student participation. I’d be for that. I don’t know how much I’d do personally. If I came across something like that, I’d read it. It’s closer to home. – Random science guy

It would be good to have events. Both on campus and in Victoria. – Sara Coons

You could read about people you know. You’d want to pick it up and find out what people on campus are doing. – Jacob Harrigan

Stuff on campus. I like those articles. More of those would be good. – Random science guy

That’d be so cool! It’d bring everyone into it. It’d get people involved. – Summer Goulden

Information on tutors! – Layne Robinson

People would be more likely to pick up the paper if they’re like, hey, I’m in this. – Jacob Harrigan

Horoscopes! – Jordan Aylesworth

You could follow events on campus, like the things people are doing. Like, you could follow five people doing Movember, growing moustaches, and track them week by week to see what it looks like. – Jacob Harrigan

Q: Cool. So, how was your first week? It was way easier to adjust than I thought it would be! – Jacob Harrigan The rooms [in Raven Hill] are so small. They’re ridiculously small. – Madeline Brown The only bad part is the schoolwork. – Madeline Brown If it was just about socializing and sitting out here, it’d be sweet. – Brianna Ford-Joppe Yeah, as soon as class is over I’m always like , OK, when do you want to meet up? – Summer Goulden It would be cool if you could transfer your food points to alcohol, though. I guess that maybe wouldn’t work . . . – Brianna Ford-Joppe I found there were a lot of people on the weekend; they get so rowdy, and I’m in the Academic Ward, in Wallace, and then people were screaming German opera. There’s this one guy, he had like 50 people there, and they’re all just like kids who are getting wasted at like 7. Really? It’s annoying, ’cause I’m not drinking, and everyone else is like passing out and puking in the bathroom. – Sarah Fox

Q: How should we do this? Should someone from the Martlet go out and talk to people? Should people just email us? Have an email contact, then advertise it. To have someone walk around would be a little annoying. – Random science guy I’d feel put on the spot, cause I don’t know what to say sometimes. – Sarah Fox You could have anonymous stories that people could email in, saying, “This happened to me.” – Sarah Coons I think doing what you did, like going around, or submitting emails. – Layne Robinson Maybe if people went around and talked to them it’s better, cause then if you send something out that you want to talk to people in the paper, there’s a good percentage of people who might not get that. – Jordan Aylesworth

Thoughts? Suggestions? Something? Email us! edit@martlet.ca

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

NEWS


UVic to reform grading system > Brandon Rosario The UVic Senate is moving forward with a comprehensive reform of the university’s current grading system. The changes, made at the recommendation of the Senate Committee on Academic Standards (SCAS), are expected to become available for utilization as early as the 2013-14 academic year. During the April 1 Senate meeting, representatives approved a motion from the SCAS that included several major changes to both the communication of grades and the content of student transcripts. The Senate has agreed on a shift from the current nine-point grade scale to the more recognizable 4.33 system that is used by the majority of post-secondary institutions across Canada. In addition — following input from the SCAS Percentage Grading Sub-Committee — official student transcripts will show the percentage mark corresponding to individual letter grades as well as numbers indicating both the class average and the class size. Also, the current “unit” system will be replaced by an assignment of “credits” in order to benefit students by increasing the clarity of mark-based information and bring the university in line with the practices of other schools for transfer purposes. The decision to implement comparative grading — the ability to measure students’ proficiency against their classmates — will “demonstrate above average achievement by a student in comparison to the class even when the mark itself does not indicate such,” says associate registrar Kathleen Boland. “It [will also] highlight small and large class sizes allowing the evaluator [e.g., grad school, employer] to determine where a student fits within their cohort,” she adds. The proposed changes will affect all undergraduate and graduate faculties with the exception of the Faculty of Law, which will “retain its current grading system until full consultation takes place and concludes that change will not harm graduate [students],” according to a report by the SCAS sub-committee on percentage grading. The Faculty of Law is currently exempt from the comparative grading system as per

its request during a May 2011 Senate meeting to exercise a clause granting the Faculty of Graduate Studies (FGS) a right to abstain, with Senate approval.

The Senate has agreed on a shift from the current ninepoint grade scale to the more recognizable 4.33 system that is used by the majority of post-secondary institutions across Canada. In a 2010 summary of feedback acquired by the SCAS sub-committee — which examined and evaluated the reactions of several university departments — consensus between both the Social Sciences and Engineering faculties showed general support for the move to percentage and comparative grading. The Peter B. Gustavson School of Business,

while supporting the implementation of a percentage grading system, acknowledges that “the standard of ‘B’ grades putting students on academic probation will potentially have new implications depending on what [percentage] number now gets officially assigned to . . . probation status.” The Faculty of Science, while supporting the proposed 4.33 grading system and publication of extra-numerical information on student transcripts, expressed tentative concern over the reporting of higher grades as a percentage as it may dilute certain students’ performances. The faculty also raised a point — one that proves to be applicable to all faculties — about the potential complications of students arguing with their instructors for extra decimals of a mark. In a March 18 memo circulated to the FGS, Graduate Studies Dean Aaron Devor expressed concern over comparative grading and the implications of a final percentage mark being displayed in association with letter grades. “Some of those who favour not showing final percentage grades on graduate student transcripts have suggested that there is a potential for a false sense of certainty and precision in differentiating students by percentage grades,” says Devor. “Rather, they argue that the letter grades that correspond to percentage ranges give a more realistic appraisal of the actual differences.” The assignment of a conditional “N” grade to students who miss final examinations or fail to complete course requirements will be reflected by a percentage mark in the 0–49 range. In the circumstance of a student receiving an “N” based on the above qualifications, but achieving a total percentage mark in the 50–100 range, an instructor will assign a final corresponding percentage of 49 for the course. A detailed plan to phase in these changes will begin with an update to the academic calendar, student information system (including the degree audit system), the online grading system, and several other preliminary processes, says Boland, all of which will happen sometime “during the next two years with broad consultation and involvement by the university community.”

Bite-size board briefs > Kailey Willetts Issues policy an issue The UVic Students’ Society (UVSS) issues policy came up for debate at the Monday, Sept. 13 board meeting. A motion, moved by Director-at-Large David Foster, asked the board to put the entire issues policy to vote during the November referendum. Foster’s motion stated the issues policy contained “many policies which are outdated or irrelevant to the purpose of the student society.” The issues policy contains the Society’s position on a range of issues, from its non-partisan stance to gun control and withdrawal from NATO. Many of the policies were adopted by the Board of Directors, meaning the current board can change them or remove them completely at a board meeting. However, a few of the policies were adopted at an Annual General Meeting (AGM), meaning they can only be changed or removed at another general meeting or via referendum. These policies include the Society’s anti-racism policy and the policy containing the Society’s pro-choice stance — which was adopted at the largest UVSS AGM in history. After much debate, the board amended the policy to send it to policy development committee for review, with the caveat that the committee ensure its review is done in time for policies to go to referendum as necessary.

Women’s Centre seeks funding increase

The UVSS board passed a motion to include a referendum question during the November election seeking a funding increase for the Women’s Centre. The question reads “Do you support an increase in student fees of $0.25 per parttime student per semester and $0.55 per full-time student per semester to be directed to the UVSS Women’s Centre to work towards its vision of creating social change through political action, education and support of University of Victoria women students?”

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OPINIONS

Farm boy, fetch me that pitcher. Or just fetch me your opinions. There’s nothing I’d like more than to publish them — unless they’re inconceivable!

Editorial

Shenanigans demean fight against cancer

Islamacism: noun? Verb? non-existent?

Students walking by the SUB on the first day of classes may have noticed some dudes in fluorescent pink t-shirts wearing aviator glasses. They were selling sunglasses and recruiting volunteers as part of the Top Gun campaign to raise money to fight breast cancer. “Save Breasts” and other creative slogans were scrawled outside the SUB. Unfortunately, those suffering from breast cancer are fighting for their lives, not for a part of their body that has been highlighted by creative marketing schemes. This campaign is called Top Guns and it originated at the University of Calgary. The original goal was to sell aviator sunglasses on campus and donate the proceeds to charity. The campaign spread to the University of British Columbia and now to Victoria. The Victoria chapter’s goal is to purchase $135 000 worth of new equipment for the Royal Jubilee Hospital — a laudable goal, to be sure. But the name and slogans used in this campaign point to one of several problems with charities today: the sexualization of health, particularly female health. It’s not just the Top Gun breast cancer campaign that is guilty of this. Notable others include an advertisement for the Organ Donor Foundation that features a woman in her underwear and reads, “Becoming a donor is probably your only chance to get inside her.” Instead of appealing to every human’s empathic functions, campaigns such as these appeal to the male sex drive. An astounding number of charities claim that “raising awareness” is part of their mandate; how is using tasteless slogans or photos of scantily-clad women raising awareness of anything other than the (already well-publicized) differences in male and female anatomy? But while Top Guns’ promotional tact might leave something to be desired, at least it strives to keep its administrative costs low and ensures that all monetary donations from sponsors go directly to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. More corporate-minded charities spend a lot of money on advertising and promotion and, well, sell a lot of crap. You can buy pink, breast cancer campaign-branded items that range from frying pans to laptops. Not only is a consumerism-fuelled campaign unimaginative — the designation of cotton-candy pink as the signature colour of something as serious as breast cancer both reinforces gender stereotypes and trivializes the illness. Companies that use pink to appeal to those who are genuinely interested in contributing to fighting cancer as a sales tactic should be ashamed of themselves. Often these companies are donating a pittance to cancer research, or nothing at all. Sometimes the products themselves can have toxins that are cancer causing. Cancer itself is a huge industry and first place in terms of fundraising goes to breast cancer. There are hundreds of corporations, agencies, companies and organizations that use breast cancer as a catch phrase in order to solicit donations and sell products. And although groups like Top Guns may ensure that the money they collect is funnelled towards helping people, they need to make sure that the methods they employ are compassionate towards individuals who suffer from cancer. Cancer is not an opportunity for well-educated marketing professionals to gain experience and make money. It’s not a joke, or a commodity or an invite to sexualize women’s health. It’s a devastating disease that will affect one out of every nine women in their lifetime, according to the Canadian Cancer Society. It’s time to ask whose interests are being served in campaigns that claim to help those suffering from disease. The answer should be those that need our help, not marketing agencies who want our money. What’s the solution? Don’t donate to offensive campaigns. Don’t buy products just because they are pink. Donate directly to your chosen cause, avoiding the marketing traps and making sure the people you want to help are being helped.

Editorial topics are decided on by staff at our weekly editorial meeting at 12:30 p.m. every Friday in the Martlet office (SUB B011). Editorials are written by one or more staff members and are not necessarily the opinion of all staff members.

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

Editorial Cartoon Credit

A lexicon for all arts undergrads > Geoffrey Line So you’re a UVic arts student. As a little welcome present, below is a shortlist of terms you’ll inevitably encounter in lectures, or in your textbooks, or in your lectures referring to your textbooks. Some are straightforward. Many you probably already know if only in context. Others are sneaky little plot-twisters. Hold them. Treasure them. Let them show you the way. Below you’ll find what they do mean, what they don’t, and in which class you’ll be most likely to run into them. Good luck— ahem, I mean, I wish you success in your academic pursuits. Hubris Not: to be confused with the humerus(funny bone) Is: excessive pride or self-confidence Commonly found: ENGL, GRS Phallic Not: of any relation to a pharaoh Is: related to the male member Commonly found: everywhere   Preclude Not: to be mistaken for prelude

Is: to prohibit or make impossible Commonly found: PHIL, ENGL           Engender Not: related to masculine or feminine disposition Is: to cause or give rise to Commonly found: SOCI, POLI   Highfalutin Not: in any way related to a wind instrument Is: pretentious writing Commonly found: ENGL   Canon Not: a firearm found on buccaneer ships Is: a body of work deemed socially or culturally valuable Commonly found: ENGL *See also: canonize, canonical   Bipartisan Not: an adjective denoting preference for both sexes Is: buzz word calling for the cooperation of different political parties Commonly found: POLI

Happy? Sad? Enraged? Tell us: letters@martlet.ca The Martlet has an open letters policy and will endeavour to print every letter received from the university community. Letters must be submitted by email, include your real name and affiliation to UVic, and have “Letter to the editor” in the subject line. Letters must be under 200 words and may be edited.


When activism works > Kailey Willetts & Cody Willett

Volume Volume64, 64,Issue Issue6 Editor-in-Chief Erin Ball edit@martlet.ca Managing Editor Kristi Sipes maned@martlet.ca Production Co-ordinator Glen O’Neill proco@martlet.ca Advertising Director Marc Junker ads@martlet.ca Distribution Co-ordinator Jon-Paul Zacharias jpzach@uvic.ca Distribution Ivan Marko Web Editor Adam Bard web@martlet.ca Web Content Editor Brad Michelson newmedia@martlet.ca Interim Graphics Editor Ryan Haak Interim Editors Vanessa Annand Kailey Willetts Contributors Tom Cheney, Joseph Clark, Janine Crockett, Patrick Cwiklinski, Ella Dalling, Colin Edge, Greg Forsberg, Adam Gaudry, Marcel (Felix) Giannielia, Vanessa Hawk, Jesse Holth, Karolina Karas, Sol Kauffman, Tyler Laing, Geoffrey Line, Julia Masukrewitz, Jeff McAllister, Blake Morneau, Pat Murry, Candace O’Neill, Corey Ranford, Brandon Rosario, Caro Shaw, Adrienne Shepherd, Shandi Shiach, Cara Spangler, Dylan Toigo, Armando Tura, Cody Willett Cover Illustration Glen O’Neill The Martlet Publishing Society is an incoporated B.C. society and a full member of Canadian University Press (CUP). We strive to act as an agent of constructive social change and will not print racist, sexist, homophobic or otherwise oppressive copy.

Happy? Sad? Enraged? Tell us: letters@martlet.ca The Martlet has an open letters policy and will endeavour to print every letter received from the university community. Letters must be submitted by e-mail, include your real name and affiliation to UVic, and have “Letter to the editor” in the subject line. Letters must be under 200 words and may be edited.

OPINIONS

Recognizing that the world is fucked up can really get you down. You’re committed to trying to fix things, but fighting against amoral interests and institutions gets disheartening. Don’t despair, friends, because activism is working. Recently, powerful shows of public passion have stopped projects that would have caused unconscionable environmental degradation and social harm. People power — everyday people caring, showing up and having their voices heard — halted arrogant corporate interests. One of these corporations was Ilkay Development Corp., owned by Ender Ilkay, a West Vancouver developer set on developing 17 kilometres of the Juan de Fuca Trail in order to build 263 private resort cabins, among other facilities. The public fought passionately for months. They even rallied hundreds strong on this year’s heaviest snow day so far. But prodevelopment elected officials wouldn’t budge. Oak Bay-Gordon Head MLA Ida Chong even refused to sign a game-changing document that would have allowed the entire Capital Regional District board to vote on the issue. Corporate interests were pushing this develop-

ment ahead, but the people didn’t give up. Resistance to the development culminated in a three-day public hearing that started on Sept. 6. Environmental groups across the CRD mobilized. Hundreds of people attended the meeting, which was the longest in CRD history. Two hundred and twenty people spoke, and more than 500 others made written submissions. The people who spoke in favour of the development? Fewer than 10. In the end, three of the five members on the committee, all of whom will be voting on the development, publicly stated that they will not be voting in favour of it. Even in Alberta, where regulations are fiddled with constantly and landscapes are tortured without end, public forces are engaging governments and corporations that plan to build a coal energy plant. Maxim Power Corp. aims to use “supercritical” technology to lower emissions to a level that doesn’t even meet the snide targets Harper’s Conservative government is about to introduce. They could get away with it through a temporary loophole that exists for dirty plants already under construction. The world would get a little (OK, a lot) dirtier. But otherwise busy citizens caught on to this detestable scheme and flooded Environment Minister Peter Kent’s office with insistent requests that the government at least follow

its own illogical rules if it won’t make some reasonable ones. Organizations like Climate Action Network Canada and LeadNow, among many others, helped channel people’s frustrations through the labyrinth of government regulatory procedures. Since there are public consultation periods built into the regulation process, the energy and passions of the people were registered. Often the minister yawns and does whatever helps his friends. This time he admitted that Maxim was trying to skirt the rules and that he was willing to consider tightening the proposed regulations. Kent just might vindicate the public effort that expressed how fed up we are with paying for atmosphere-choking electricity. “Vindicate” might be a little strong, seeing that Maxim might go ahead with a less-polluting design even if the government follows through. The point is that if people do nothing, the greedy have no reason to check their behaviour. Mobilized and engaged people actually accomplish good things. We can take heart: if we’re loud enough for long enough together in the right moments, we have the power to make democracy work for us. The power of seeing our values affect this broken system gives us inspiration to plot bigger. When it catches on, Harper and his kind are in for a hell of trip.

Elite athletes not invincible > Patrick Cwiklinski It was a tragedy many thought impossible. An entire franchise engulfed in flames, decimated by a devastating plane crash that left all but two dead. It’s already being declared the darkest day in the history of hockey, a day that will forever serve as a grim reminder of the mortality of our most treasured athletic idols. On Sept. 7 at approximately 4 p.m. local time, a Yakolev Yak-42 passenger aircraft carrying the players and staff of Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, a team in Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League (KHL), crashed en route to Minsk, Belarus, where they were set to open the 2011-12 season. The crash claimed the lives of 43 people on board including former NHL players Pavol Demitra, Josef Vasicek, Karel Rachunek, Jan Marek, Stefan Liv, Karlis Skrastins, Ruslan Salei and head coach Brad McCrimmon. These were players and staff who were dedicated to the excellence of Lokomotiv. Above all, and most importantly, they were friends and family members who will be missed dearly

by everyone they’ve left behind. In a summer already plagued with grief over the deaths of three NHL players — Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak — the Lokomotiv plane crash is the most deadly accident the game has ever witnessed and will undoubtedly shake fans from Russia to Canada. It’s easy to sit down, scribble some words about the magnitude of this tragedy and speculate on its causes — old Soviet plane technology? underqualified pilots? But if those are the only things we take away from this, nothing has been learned. Growing up as an avid sports fan, I can’t recall a single instance that I thought about any athlete’s personal life unless in regards to how big their house was or how many exotic cars they owned. It made me want everything they had. What fails to be seen time and time again are the constant challenges and hardships these men and women face on a daily basis. Simply because someone gets a big paycheck with a bunch of zeroes attached doesn’t mean that person is immune to what is happening

around them — life. Professional athletes who have attained a level of celebrity are people who live, breath and interact just like those of us who have an undying loyalty to them because of their status. It’s also been a year of realizations in hockey. Boston Bruins centre Marc Savard is at a career crossroads. His recurring post-concussion syndrome has put him out of commission for the season and may end his career. Canada’s golden boy Sidney Crosby has a nasty concussion that will force him to stay off the ice longer than anticipated.  These moments, from a horrific plane crash in Russia to a seemingly mild headshot in Canada, make us realize that the line separating everyday fans from elite athletes is much thinner than once thought. Every life is precious, whether it’s a famous or a common one. The Lokomotiv plane crash will forever mark a sad day in hockey history. But perhaps it will also allow us to rethink how we view professional athletes as conduits for entertainment that allow us to escape our realities.

Indigenous Ideas

Making a more Indigenous campus > Adam Gaudry Adam Gaudry is Métis and a PhD Candidate in Indigenous Governance. Another school year begins with a couple hundred new Indigenous students arriving at UVic. The stats cited by university employees put our number at about 800, or about one in 20 students. For a medium-sized, non-tribal university, this has to be one of the most Indigenous schools in North America. There is a wealth of Native programming open to Native students at UVic. Indigenous content courses attract many talented and community-grounded Native students, and if you search, you’ll find one in almost every faculty. With great facilities like the First Peoples’ House (FPH), we have an amazing place for Indigenous people from all over to come together. There are many social and cultural spaces on campus for new Native students to meet other Native students and community members to chat, bead or have bannock and tea. If you’re new here, I recommend checking out the groups and events listed below. The Native Students’ Union (NSU) is the Indigenous student advocacy group on campus.

It is very active in the planning of social, cultural and educational events on campus, and is a solid group of active young Natives. There is a great lounge space in the First Peoples’ House (FPH), and computer facilities for Native students are in the SUB. The First Peoples’ House (FPH), the big cedar building on the Quad, it is the hub of Indigenous student events on campus. It hosts regular feast-nights and houses traditional knowledge workshops. The Office of Indigenous Affairs (INAF) is housed in the FPH and organizes most of the cultural events there, as well as regular academic and emotional support services like monthly talking circles, yoga and writing and math tutoring. Elders-in-Residence are available for students to drop in and visit Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Elders’ Lounge. INAF also has bursaries available for Indigenous students that are advertised throughout the year. LE,NONET is a program specifically designed for undergraduate Indigenous students, providing opportunities for students to do research apprenticeships, community internships and mentorships, and to access academic support and funding.

These groups all combine to form a large and diverse support network for Indigenous students. It allows us to hold each other up because, as many of us already know, the university can be a very non-Native place. Like other institutions of higher learning, UVic struggles with racism and ignorance both in the classroom and in student life in general. These are the realities we face that do not make it into the recruitment literature, campus tours or the university’s pitches for alumni donations. Yet racism is as real as ever, and the best defence against it is a strong community that is supportive of its members and vocal in challenging the powers that be. While there are plenty of institutional supports like the ones mentioned above, our real strength comes from the informal bonds we make with one another. Friendship is stronger and more dependable than anything else, and it strengthens us all. If you’re a new Native student at UVic, come out to the NSU, enjoy the feasts and activities at the First Peoples’ House and go to LE,NONET for its academic support. Do these things not only for what you will learn, but also for the people you will meet. By supporting one another, we will make this school a more Indigenous place. September 15, 2011 MARTLET

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Twitter fosters truth-telling > Colin Edge Social networking is changing politics and government. This fact was first proven by the HST referendum, and it’s being solidified by the public outcry against Gordon Campbell’s nomination to receive the Order of B.C., British Columbia’s highest honorary achievement award. When the award petition officially closed on March 10, Campbell’s status violated the rule that nominees cannot be politicians who are currently in office. Resigning from office four days after being nominated, Campbell was chosen by the Order of B.C. advisory council to receive the award; however, citizens quickly exposed the technicality via Twitter, once again contesting the honesty and the integrity of the B.C. provincial government and its agencies. On Sept. 7, Lieutenant Governor Steven Point declared the technicality a misunderstanding on behalf of the public, while the government agency overseeing the process refused to release information on the details of Campbell’s nomination. B.C. citizens are voicing their resentment on Twitter and other social networking sites where the dominant opinion is that provincial leadership is once again acting against its citizens with arrogance and dishonesty. Campbell resigned from office due to a lack of support. He had introduced the HST without consulting the public, and continues to be an inflammable subject within the social networking community. British Columbians

with dedicated Twitter and Facebook accounts are forcing the government to answer for its actions. Today’s citizens are taking the responsibilities of the official opposition and the traditional media into their own hands. Citizens are shifting away from traditional news sources, such as TV and radio, to social networking sites for news and information. In stark contrast with many traditional news sources, which attempt to sway public opinion, social networking offers citizens the opportunity to air their opinions. Twitter forces politicians to be more concise with their statements. Today’s citizens are quick to expose political nonsense; thus, politicians are quickly discovering that in order to maintain a favourable public opinion, they must become more candid in dealing with the public. Similar to the HST referendum, the public’s response to Campbell’s nomination sends government the message that it cannot afford to neglect public consultation. Whether Gordon Campbell is a qualified recipient is beside the point; the main focus for B.C. citizens is on better government — a government that can adapt to the current reality of social networking and to its citizens’ demands for honesty and openness . Should Campbell receive the award, so be it. B.C. citizens look forward to electing a government fit for the modern era in which it is not the public’s job to investigate government opinion, but the government’s job to investigate public opinion prior to making major decisions.

RYAN HAAK

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

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RYAN HAAK

An amoral alternative to assisted suicide

Terminal palliation allows doctors to play God at whim > Shandi Shiach Before I read an article in which UVic Professor Eike-Henner Kluge explains “lethal palliation,” I thought that, in B.C., human euthanasia was punishable by law. “You give a large enough dose of a narcotic,” Kluge was quoted as saying, “like morphine — ostensibly for pain relief. But the patient’s breathing and heart stops. It’s called ‘the double effect.’ Of course, the doctor knows the dosage is going to kill the patient! But, he can’t say that. He can say, ‘I didn’t intend to kill. The morphine was for pain.’ So it’s not officially called ‘euthanasia.’ It’s called ‘terminal palliation.’ It’s semantics. It’s finessing the system. The [Canadian Medical Protective Association] is happy.” I once opposed assisted suicide. I was scared that factoring more choice into death might mean the earlier loss of a loved one, or of a

life that had hope shining just around the next corner. If only that person had known how much they were still loved, appreciated, needed and wanted. I worried that social pressures, built by mounting medical fees for life-saving measures and end-of-life care, might push people into seeing it as a personal duty to unburden the health care system. To those people I say, and I hope society will back me, “You are not a burden. You are a life worth saving and prolonging for as long as you deem it beneficial.” In light of my revelation that euthanasia regularly occurs in B.C. under the guise of completely unregulated “lethal palliation,” I have different concerns. Within the current system, all it takes to steal a sick loved one is a single doctor. This can be a doctor who thinks he or she knows better than the patient, and administers the lethal treatment without consent. Maybe the

patient’s family can’t make it up that week, and the doctor sees him miserable and lonely. Or a patient refuses to sign a Do Not Resuscitate order, and the doctor wants to save her the trauma of resuscitation. One doctor can decide whether someone’s quality of life is acceptable, and choose to end that life against the patient’s will. Oops, too much morphine. This does happen. After all, in a system that quietly protects doctors who perform lethal palliation, who’s to say that patient didn’t really want to die? After the fact, few medical professionals will want to see the doctor prosecuted. Because chances are, most have sympathized with a well-informed, terminally-ill patient with no quality of life, and so feel the need to protect the only currently available alternative to prolonged suffering. If assisted suicide were regulated, it would likely require two or more independent

medical opinions on a patient’s outlook and two or more rulings of “terminally ill.” If B.C. legalizes assisted suicide, as opposed to euthanasia, it would also require the patient to take the final action, eliminating the chance of anyone else making the decision. A person would have to be of sound mind to decide, thereby protecting the mentally ill. In a regulated system there are fail-safes. If someone doesn’t want to die, or there’s a chance it’s not the best available option, the documents won’t be signed, and the death won’t proceed. Legalizing assisted suicide might also save costs, so those who do want to fight and live as long as they can in whatever condition they find themselves won’t feel the pressure of an over-taxed palliative care sector. Rather than subject people to the dangers of unregulated narcotic overdoses, it’s time mum stopped being the word on the right to die.

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Boundaries Broken Being on the Island takes me places I never thought I’d go. From singing “Redemption Song” with 10 000 people at my first 4/20 celebration in Vancouver to witnessing police cars set ablaze from metres away during the Stanley Cup Riot to an eight-day desert survival journey at Burning Man, a kaleidoscope of summer experiences threw me across challenging boundaries. This West Coast environment pushes me to grow and explore. Beyond boundaries of mere knowledge, I seek frontiers that are physical, emotional and relational. Like my peers, I’m educating myself to acquire the confidence needed to transcend those boundaries. Around this time last year, I was starting at UVic and had a serious case of imposter’s syndrome. People in my classes had intelligent things to say and impressive experiences to relate. I felt I didn’t have as much to contribute and it forced me to reflect on what was standing between me and a more active way of being. The answer was self-judgment.

On the Importance of Friends Forging friendships each semester helped me discover the confidence I needed to stop holding myself so apart from experiences that I grew up judging as irresponsible. It all started with a little gassin’ (a greasy style of drinking that hails from back East) around illegal beach fires. Driftwood was plentiful and fires were easy to start and snuff. New friends from the Maritimes, southern Ontario and Germany wanted to experience British Columbia’s mystique, and I’d been on the Island long enough to know what they had to see. As classes wound up and reading lists dwindled, we cobbled together ride-shares and bus sequences that would take us to hotel ruins at the Sooke potholes, the trestle bridge in Goldstream and Mount Finlayson, which afforded gorgeous views of the Island’s southern tip. As soon as classes finished for the summer, we were in full-on adventure-seeking mode. We absorbed the exquisite beauty of Sombrio and Botanical Beaches, hugged massive old growth trees in Avatar Grove and canoed on Lake Cowichan. These sights compelled us to set out through Cathedral Grove to Tofino and Ucluelet, where we strolled vast beaches along the open Pacific. I dove right in for the first time at Long Beach and probably wouldn’t have done it if I hadn’t had company. Same goes for the naked plunges I’d take on a later trip to Mystic Beach. It’s not peer pressure — it’s peer empowerment. That’s how I ended up trekking to the Gorge Amphitheatre in Washington for the four-day Sasquatch music festival — friends convince you to explore limits. Not only was it an obviously irresponsible use of my budget limits, making my way there via random Internet match-up was also a challenge to foundational limitations on taking rides with strangers (who now happen to be friends). Add my initial exposure to the celebratory festival ethos and more hipsters than I’d ever seen gathered in one place, and it’s safe to say it felt surreal. But it was a surreal I could handle, which was the reassuring part. The feeling was by no means limited to the festival, either. Back in Victoria and walking to the Beacon Hill flagpole through tall grass with buddies and beer, I heard oddly syncopated drumming in the bushes. Out popped girls in starched dresses and boys with ironic facial hair who claimed to be having a hipster-themed birthday party. They took pictures with old cameras and shared chilled oysters with a variety of sauces. Before long they said they were off to some other secret location to continue the festivities (we’d opted for another beach fire) and slowly drifted off in bunches. Were they actually pretending to be hipsters, or were they just hipsters pretending to be hipsters because they feared judgment? I might never know. And that’s all right, because it’s irrelevant. They were kind. Those popular sentiments that encourage me to hate on hipsters and their peculiar tastes have always felt suspicious, and befriending these people showed me how terribly boundary-building the term “hipster” alone proves to be. What useful purpose does scene categorization serve but to provide easy reference points for snap judgment?

On the Importance of Disobedience Still, a few beach fires, a little public nudity and some unorthodox cultural exposure didn’t push my boundaries as far as I was ready to go. Having grown up on harsh judgments about things like public disorder, recreational drug use and indignant music, I wanted to understand these things instead of thoughtlessly dismissing them and their adherents. A friend and I took a trip to the Vancouver Art Gallery on April 20 and found no stigma or secrecy surrounding cannabis use. One of the event’s organizers (another old friend from school) compared 4/20 to the community-building function that Pride

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

FEATURE


Written By: Cody Willett Layout by: Sol Kauffman Photos by: Caro Shaw, Corey Ranford, Tom Cheney, Benjamin Moller, Julia Masurkewitz, Cody Willett festivals and farmer’s markets respectively perform for the LGBTQ and environmental movements. Events like these provide us with a chance to feel accepted and among “our” people, if only for a day, out in public view. There was peace and love abundant, and I felt comfortable doing something I’d have negatively judged myself for only months earlier. Emboldened to explore the unique energies found in varied crowds, I sought thrills by throwing myself out there like I’d never had the courage to do before. The Stanley Cup was on its way to Vancouver, and having been at Robson and Granville when Canada won gold in Olympic men’s hockey last year, I knew I had to be there should the Canucks see fit to mend my broken childhood dreams from 1994. I was downtown with friends at the jumbo screens by the CBC, Vancouver Public Library and Canada Post buildings for game seven, and it got weird. With minutes still on the clock and the fate of the game all but sealed, I began to hear metallic thuds and crystalline tinkling coming from the first smashed and torched car. The screens were shorting out from crowd-sourced projectiles before the closing seconds were through. Chants of “Fuck Boston” rang out around me and I walked up the street only to find angry, alienated people surging toward situations that allowed them to vent. Watching later from atop the bus shelter at the Queen Elizabeth Theater, I saw rioters lingering, resisting and burning things as police moved slowly to disperse them. The result was well-publicized but not well-explained. At first, authorities blamed committed anarchists, but were then forced to admit that suburban kids with serious aggression and trust issues were mostly responsible. Left without a Stanley Cup to admire, they had nothing to celebrate and so let slip some revealing frustrations about unrealized expectations. Bearing witness to the riots felt heavy and dangerous, but they allowed me to see fragility of the behavioural boundaries supported by authorities. Imagine what would happen if we had a real common cause.

On the Importance of Commonality Sometimes when I’m at my desk trying to stop frittering time away on the Internet for long enough to get real things done, I think about how much of a shame it is that so many of us are cooped up in this way. School, work and procrastination take up so much time that I’ve avoided new experiences because I’m protective of what little personal time remains. But summer allows us to reclaim our lives. Picnics, barbecues and parties provide space for interactions with random people and situations that help us gain greater insight into who we are and who we really want to be. Take, for example, the experience of watching seals on a Gulf Island picnic. I grabbed a morning bus out to Swartz Bay with some friends and walked onto a ferry that brought us to Otter Point on North Pender Island. We found a spot where several seals were hanging out and watched nature at play, spellbound, while a baby seal explored the shoreline a couple meters away from us, its parents observing nearby. Later that day, however, we came upon another beach and were startled to find a different baby seal, obviously lost and tired, that was struggling to hoist itself onto the banked shore. It kept swimming nearer to us and at one point was within arm’s reach. My friend was adamant that if any of us touched the seal, it was doomed to die. I listened, but sat sullenly for a half hour, watching nature in peril as the seal swam in lazy circles with its eyes closed and nose barely breaching the surface of the frigid Pacific. We left before we knew its fate. I felt helpless to save this suffering creature and very guilty, given that the situation represented a microcosm of our global ecology. The boundaries our civilization has erected between humans and meaningful relationships with our ecology isolate us from our humanity. You’d think that since the situation affects us commonly, we’d collectively be more responsive to it than we have been. I felt it was time to fall upon nature’s mercy and learn from it, so I journeyed to Black Rock City for Burning Man. This city, located on an ancient alkaline lakebed in the Nevada desert, exists for barely more than a week per year and is a pilgrimage for lovers of art, community and (mostly) uninhibited self-expression. It’s a place to survive, yet I, along with more than 50 000 other transitional beings, thrived. How does one live through some of the harsher conditions on the continent for eight days in high summer? Radical self-reliance and inclusivity — that’s how. Burning Man is like nothing else, and most say it defies description. I can say it is the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. Imagine a society where gifting replaces money, where everyone wants to connect with you and where hugs outnumber handshakes for the sober and wasted alike. Think of a cyclist and pedestrian paradise that vanishes without a trace when everyone returns to the default world. The dust on the surface is powdery like the moon and the nightly lights from never-ending parties make you feel like you’re on another planet. But I wasn’t — I was again with my people. They’re the ones who recognize the alienating pathologies of modern life and choose to grow and sustain a better way of being. Burning Man is a healthy place for rock ’n’ roll refugees of all sorts. In an environment that can and will kill you, we brought enough provisions, art and love to create an oasis where boundaries between self, community and ecology ceased to exist. If it can exist there, it can exist anywhere. And it does. Burners bring this existence home with them. They seek to erode boundaries between life’s participants and observers. Their enthusiasm for pushing their own limits and blending categorizations inspires others to question the judgments of straight society. Some might call us a bunch of “dirty hippies,” and that’s endearing, for we know places where money doesn’t exist and communities are inclusive. In pushing past commodification, the gift economy transcends boundaries built by capitalism. We are free to build something we could call “capitalisnt.” The Beatles once questioned how such a revolution might unfold, suggesting that before we can change our institutions, we’d better free our minds instead. I tried to do just that this summer, but I couldn’t have started without the understanding that came from reaching out for the deeper knowledge, relationships and experiences that this community and time of year offers. Boundaries are falling apart all around you. You’re part of it as soon as you decide to be.

FEATURE

September 15, 2011 MARTLET

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RYAN HAAK

The death of diversity in university > Jeff McAllister We all know him: the pre-med student. At least, that’s what he’d prefer to be called. Despite the fact that pre-medicine is not an official program, we all know what it means: GPA boosting by avoiding any elective that doesn’t guarantee an easy ‘A.’ He’s not lazy, the pre-med will say; he’s smart. He’s working the system. And he’s right. Only this is a system doing more damage than good. The old adage goes something like this: a specialist is someone that knows more and more about less and less. And in today’s competitive work field, specialization is essential. But to what extent? At what point does the distillation of human knowledge sacrifice basic skills? That point has already come. When has it ever been wise to head out into the workforce without an understanding of business? Who wants to hire a professional who can’t write a grammatically correct report? And is it responsible to participate in a democratic

OPINIONS

society without a real grasp of politics? But then again, to pursue a combination of the above under the current system is to shoot yourself in the foot. Time is money, and good grades have become an essential qualifier. Between scholarships, bursaries, research funding and grad-school admissions, we’re trapped in a game of jumping through hoops. And under these rules, the easiest way to impress is to take the path of least resistance. How many times have you had to drop an engaging elective to protect your GPA? Worse yet, you may have avoided choosing a certain minor because you were scared of the learning curve. Or maybe your degree program simply hasn’t given you room for electives. Who has to be fluent in the English language (or any language, for that matter) to become an engineer? According to the UVic calendar, not you! I’ve yet to encounter a perfect solution, but here’s the best yet: the credit/fail systems that have been proposed at a variety of Canadian schools, including our neighbor,

The University of British Columbia. The goal is to encourage students to explore subjects outside of their faculty. Electives in which the options are not limited by a student’s program will be graded on a pass-or-fail basis. Students will receive credit for their efforts, but their performance will not affect their grade point average. The merits are two-fold: first, students can’t use fluffy courses to dope their average (sorry, Vampire Studies). Second, they won’t be penalized for challenging themselves. I’d be interested in seeing the special-interest courses that would arise should UVic adopt a similar system. I’d also be interested in hearing how the students from schools that use the credit/fail system would rank their undergrad experience in relation to ours. I’ve been at the UVic for over five years now. In that time, I’ve taken close to 60 classes. This past summer, I graduated with a BA in creative writing; this April, I’ll obtain a B.Sc. in chemistry with a business minor. Although I’ll move on after that, it’s not for lack of course options. Anatomy, women’s studies, psychology . . . if

I have one regret, it’s that I didn’t dabble in more subjects when I had the chance. So what did I accomplish? I doubt I would have been a successful writer without chemistry (a writer needs an outside influence to write about). And to see how writing could improve one’s chemistry, one only needs to see the sorry state of science journals today. I’ve built architecture models based on German expressionist films. I’ve used marketing theories to dissect Madonna. None of these courses have been useless to me. This summer, I will travel to Togo in West Africa to do PR writing for the world’s largest non-governmental provider of free healthcare. Although the job calls on my professional writing skills, it was my business minor that landed me the interview. It would be naive to say any one of the above courses was more useful than the other — at this point, they’re indistinct. After all, I didn’t come to university to seek out a profession in writing, chemistry or business — I came to university to learn. Isn’t that what education is about?

September 15, 2011 MARTLET

15


CULTURE

I wish we could all get along like we used to in middle school. I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles.

Around the steampunk world in two days Victoria Steam Expo will hold court in Craigdarroch Castle > Vanessa Annand When I met with Jordan Stratford, the organizer of the second Victoria Steam Exposition, I half expected him to be clutching a brass-knobbed cane and checking a pocket watch with its inner workings exposed. Instead, I met a man with an iPhone in hand. He was, however, quick to bemoan his Apple accessory. “There’s no access point to it. It’s a flat plane of black glass,” he explained. “In the Victorian era, everything was, in many ways, transparent. You could see that clockwork. You could see the mechanism and delight in the exhibition of that mechanism.” Exhibiting mechanisms is the ethos behind the Victoria Steam Expo, and the mechanisms under examination will include everything from the literary devices used by steampunk authors to the lashings of a corset. “Corset tying (and untying!)” is the title of one of many sessions that will take place at Craigdarroch Castle on Sept. 24 and 25. The castle lends itself to exploration, too. Elisabeth Hazell, the castle’s assistant manager, asked Stratford to hold the Expo there, calling it “the perfect venue with the dark wood paneling and Victorian details.” If you’ve only the foggiest, sepia-toned picture of what the term “steampunk” comprehends, you’re in good company. Stratford estimates that, of the 350 people who attended last year’s Expo (the first steampunk convention in Canada), only 20 per cent had even heard of the subculture before seeing the marketing for the event. He says steampunk began as a literary genre in the 1980s — a genre that borrowed from the gaslight-fuelled, invention-filled exuberance of authors like Jules Verne. “If steampunk is anything, I think it’s a tongue-in-cheek nod to the naiveté of that exuberance — that we’re just one gizmo or one contraption away from utopia,” says Stratford. Stratford credits a 2008 article published in the New York Times that “threw the doors open,” for bringing steampunk into the public eye. The article, “Steampunk moves between two worlds,” attempts to pinpoint the key

practices of steampunk devotees: they read speculative fiction by the likes of H.G. Wells, watch period films filled with derring-do (The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen), build lumbering contraptions (tree-houses with brass fittings), trawl eBay for anachronistic finds (watch cogs) and assemble their own fashions (“an adventurous pastiche of neoVictorian, Edwardian and military style accented with sometimes crudely mechanized accoutrements like brass goggle . . .”). But there’s more to steampunk than acute nostalgia for burnished buttons and epaulettes. Stratford points out that, although “progress was universal” in the Victorian era, it only benefitted those who were “Christian, white and straight.” Steampunks seek to undermine the “monstrosity” of human exploitation that the industrialized world was built on — that’s what makes it punk. Yes, the weekend will include a genteel, catered picnic on the castle’s lawn with periodappropriate canapes, a burlesque seance and a theremin performance. But more cerebral events will also abound, including lectures by Stratford that will delve into the troubling theological and social underpinnings that inspired the inventions of Tesla and Edison. The ultimate goal is to inspire participants to create, not just to reflect. Some attendees from last year are returning as vendors this year, selling jewelry and other curiosities. “Make your own stuff, break your own stuff. Find things, scrounge, repurpose, recycle and enjoy. Learn about history. Learn about the attitude and the philosophy, but create,” says Stratford. It is, in some small way, the antidote to the contemporary quandary of consumerism. “In the modern age, we’re still fetishistically one gizmo away from our own personal happiness,” says Stratford. But instead of global betterment, we’re striving for individualized utopias. “It’s isolating. Nobody buys an iPhone to make the world a better place.” For more information on the Victoria Steam Expo or to purchase a $40 weekend pass, visit http://victoriamexpo.blogspot.com.

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Craigdarroch Castle may not be the centre of the earth, but it will be centre for all things steam punk on Sept. 24 and 25.

The Wailin’ Jennys have nothing to cry about > Dylan Toigo Sweet and soulful harmonies will ring through the rafters of Alix Goolden Hall on Sept. 18, when Juno Award-winning trio The Wailin’ Jennys wrap up nine months of touring with a stop in Victoria. The critically acclaimed roots and folk group, based out of Winnipeg, has been busy touring North America since the February release of their new album, Bright Morning Stars. Made up of soprano Ruth Moody, mezzo Nicky Mehta and alto Heather Masse, The Wailin’ Jennys sing with the kind of seductive grace that can silence a crowd in an instant. Since the release of their 2005 Juno-winning debut 40 Days, the band has been a fixture in folk circles around the world and has gained

international recognition for mesmerizing vocal harmonies and adept songwriting. On his website nodepression.com, Michael Bialas suggests “[The Wailin’ Jennys’] melodies rate with that higher profile trio of Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt.” The group’s latest record, which is featured heavily in their live performance, hit the top of Billboard’s bluegrass chart within weeks of its release and has remained in the top 10 ever since. The album has been praised by media and listeners alike, and the girls could not be happier about that. “It’s been amazing,” Moody says, speaking on the phone from her home in Winnipeg. “We constantly feel so lucky to have the fans that we do.”

Summer tours consist of playing at various music festivals, a practice that can be taxing at times. “Because it is festival season, it’s a lot of criss-crossing back and forth [across North America] and so it ends up feeling really busy with lots of travel,” Moody says. She is quick to point out, however, that despite the heavy travel schedule, playing festivals is “so rewarding.” Other rewards on this tour have included playing at the prestigious Newport Folk Festival, infamous for being the event at which Bob Dylan went electric, as well as spending time with legendary blues and gospel singer Mavis Staples. For long-time fans of The Wailin’ Jennys, there is a nice mix of songs from all of

their full-length albums included in their live shows, says Moody. For the most part, however, the evening will feature tracks from Bright Morning Stars. “We’re always growing as musicians and always pushing ourselves as writers, and I think we did push ourselves on this record,” says Moody. “We sort of wrote outside our comfort zone a bit … it is at times really celebratory and joyous, and then at other times sort of intimate and introspective.”

The Wailin’ Jennys September 18, 2011 @ 7 pm Alix Goolden Hall $28

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MARTLET September 15, 2011


Journals from Japan

Volunteers find fulfilment restoring a tsunami-ravaged park > Joseph Clark Joseph Clark is an undergraduate student at UVic majoring in English and taking the Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) program. He often goes to Japan to visit his family, which was affected by the earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. Joseph spent the month of May 2011 volunteering in Sendai, Japan. May 6, 2011 During the bus ride to my second day of volunteering, the scenery suddenly changes from a normal Japanese urban setting to a wasteland stripped of all standing structures and strewn with every kind of debris imaginable. Pieces of guardrail that once stretched along 50 feet of the road are crumpled like paper into clumps 10 feet long. Cars, cargo boxes and boats are entwined with tape that is either for holding them from shifting or to show that they have been inspected. Concrete telephone poles have been snapped like twigs.

We drive several minutes through this scenery before we arrive at a public park surrounded by gates and walls that have survived the tsunami. Because of these walls, the park is untouched by wrecked cars and the debris that litters the field outside. My group of 30 volunteers is taken slightly off guard by the sudden change. The job we are working on is called The Tulip Project, and the objective is to work on the park until it is scenic enough to take a pleasant walk through. A line of red and yellow tulips has already been planted, so we know that part of the reason the park looks so much better than its surroundings is that people have already worked on it. Nevertheless, it is caked in dried mud and strewn with uprooted shrubs over its entire square kilometre. Our job is to shovel the dried mud, uprooted shrubs and broken branches into garbage bags and pile them up near the front gates of the park. We have a 15-minute break for every hour of work and we work for about seven hours. The frequent breaks are due to the presence of older members among our group of volunteers. Many volunteers, however, are in their 20s. As we

work, dust swirls up into our faces. Although we are wearing masks to prevent us from inhaling the dust, many volunteers have opted not to wear goggles because of the heat. We are faced with the choice of constantly having dust blowing into our eyes or being even hotter than we already are. The sweat pouring off my face causes my goggles to fog up almost instantly and my mask to chafe against my skin uncomfortably, so I work without either of them. As our work progresses and the park begins to look more presentable, smiles become more and more visible on the volunteers’ faces. When I compare these faces to the faces of university graduates undertaking the feared search for a permanent job, they are on opposite ends of the expression spectrum. Finding a job is very hard and, in many cases, a depressing time for graduates. But the young people in this project find meaning and fulfilment in this volunteer work, which, when complete, will allow people to escape from the destruction outside the park walls and take a walk through flower gardens. They are happy to work if it will bring any comfort

WE SHOULD HANG OUT SOMETIME.

to those who have suffered loss because they know the people it helps. When asked why they decided to volunteer, most volunteers will shy away from the question, saying that it is too personal. Towards the end of the day, the majority of the paths and fields have been cleared of mud, sticks and uprooted shrubs. After the rest of the area has been cleared, planting more flowers and fixing the electrical and plumbing systems will probably be all the work left to do before the park is opened to the public. Before we leave, a co-ordinator takes a group photo of the volunteers. It will probably be mounted on a wall inside the park. It seems that we will get some lasting credit for the work we have done to re-establish the park after the disaster. One young man asks me where I am from and I tell him I am from Canada, explaining that I have family in Sendai. He thanks me for my help. There is a show of appreciation and sense of accomplishment among all of the exhausted volunteers as we pile into the bus and head into the vast wasteland on our way back to the volunteer centre.

let’s get in touch. email edit@martlet.ca or swing by our office in the student union building room b 011 for more info.

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A play in The Coup’s hopeful revolution itself: The Audition Music Rags

> Blake Morneau

The last time The Coup played a show in Victoria, founding member Boots Riley was approached by members of a First Nations tribe in B.C. that had recently been involved in an altercation with the local authorities. “They got into a shootout with the police and they were listening to The Coup’s album Genocide & Juice through the whole shootout on loop,” says Riley. The chief of the tribe told Riley that The Coup’s music inspired them to keep going. It’s just one of the many stories fans have related to Riley over his years of making politicallycharged party music. Riley has built a career on writing and producing hard-hitting music that differs from other topical songwriters and socially conscious rappers; Riley makes sure to always weave in a message of hope, not one of frustration and anger. “The idea is I want people to feel empowered. I don’t think when people are angry they do a lot of productive things,” he says. “I think when people are hopeful, when they see how they can win, that’s when people do a lot of productive things to change the world.” While a lot of writers tend to get bogged down in “doom and gloom or anger,” Riley always conveys a message of empowerment and the possibility that things really can get better. “I started as an organizer in a radical organization, and when you’re at it alone and you become an artist, you try to look at the world and how to change it, anger and frustration is really where you have to go with that,” says Riley. Riley says his hope is not misguided. “It’s not just some hokey, spiritual ‘We just have to have hope.’ It’s a feel-good that’s based on actually looking around and figuring out the steps to change the world.” Riley is working to bring his hopeful outlook to the big screen with his upcoming film Sorry To Bother You. The film is a dark comedy

featuring surreal magic based on his time as a telemarketer, a job that found him working with rapper Gift of Gab of Blackalicious. Riley has assembled a strong cast to help him see the project through. “It’s being produced by Chad Hope, who produced 21 Grams and The Ice Storm, and we got David Cross and Patton Oswald [to star],” he says. Riley will also, obviously, provide musical support. “The new Coup album is the soundtrack, and it’s actually the best writing I’ve ever done in my life,” he says. “It’s also musically the stuff I’m proudest of so far.” When pressed, Riley can’t promise we’ll get to hear any of the new songs during The Coup’s upcoming set at Rifflandia. “Possibly. We’ve rehearsed some of them and we just gotta see … but it’s very hot.” What fans can expect to see is a hard-hitting, high-energy set. Riley says it’s “a chance in real time to emote a version of what I feel about those songs, a way I can connect in real time with the listeners.” Although The Coup is known as a duo composed of Riley and DJ Pam The Funkstress, the band brings something a little different to their live shows. “A lot of people that haven’t seen The Coup live think it’s just me with a DJ, but we’ve got a live band,” he says. Riley hopes fans can take a message home with them. “I want people to take that they are the ones needed in the movement in order to change the world. It’s them that’s needed. Their face, body, words and their spirit that’s needed to get more people to join and guide the way the movement is going. You are the one.” The Coup September 22, 2011 @ 11:30 p.m. Phillip’s Brewery Included in Rifflandia General Admission

> Shandi Shiach

Boots Riley.

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Jake West is a contact juggler, a financial skills teacher, a businessman and a clown. Between running a catering and entertainment company with his wife, Yoko, and studying education at UVic, he’s recently teamed up with talent from the Canadian Pacific Ballet to perfect a new form of physical comedy — a collaborative performance called The Audition. “We’re looking for a new male lead for the ballet,” he says about his new show. He beams before giving a conspiratorial hint about the upcoming performance at Merridale Estate Cidery in Cobble Hill. “What you expect and what happens are two very different things.” Last November, Phoenix Theatre’s Break the Cycle combined West’s contact juggling with dance, improvisation, acrobatics, drama and even unicycling. Theatre department chair Warwick Dobson called it “the best student-produced show that I’ve seen in three decades of experience.” UVic alumnus Cameron Fraser, creator and director of Break the Cycle, holds a Guinness World Record for the most consecutive backflips on a unicycle, on a trampoline. He says West is a hilarious guy to watch. “He’s gunning for a whole new type of performing arts in Victoria,” says Fraser. “It’s going to be big.” West has put in his time busking, but prefers to work private events where audiences appreciate greater subtlety. Ideally, to pay the rent, he wants to play the markets, and mold young entrepreneurs. “Artists, get financially savvy now!” says West, who plans to be a millionaire in the next five years but still continue performing. He recounts with disbelief how students take out years worth of debt to pay for Fine Arts degrees with no understanding of the financial implications. “I fully support liberal arts degrees. Make art your passion. Do it,” advises West, class clown turned teacher. “But learn sales techniques; learn marketing.” According to West, who is self-taught in just about all he does, everything you need is online. But the one area he had a mentor in is “the diabolo.” The art of maneuvering a goblet on a string between two sticks was shown to him by a friend in Cirque du Soleil. West himself was invited to audition for Cirque du Soleil this past July, and plans to do so again should they pass through his area. Contact juggling became popular more than 20 years ago. Those scenes in the ’80s movie Labyrinth where David Bowie juggles a crystal ball, rolling it from hand to hand over fingertips, were actually performed by juggler Michael Moschen, standing behind the actor. It’s a mesmerizing feat, which West and other performing artists have put their own spin on. With West, it’s a highly active, acrobatic version, using not only his hands but his arms, his shoulders, his entire body and even other dancers. Audience members can see it for themselves as West invites anyone with $20 and a carpool to come see “The Audition” on Sept.18 at Merridale. For this performance, he will once again be melding unlikely elements into a resurgence of circus art as part of a distillery seminar and tasting event at Merridale. What better time to brave an inclusive stage act than after some wine tasting? For those that can’t make it to Merridale for the performance, West will also be performing at the Sydney Fine Art Show in October. The Audition September 18, 2011 @ 4 p.m. Merridale Estate Winery $20

CULTURE


Cinecenta celebrates 40 years of film > Janine Crockett Fortieth anniversaries don’t come around everyday, especially for those in the film distribution business. With recent closures of movie rental establishments and theatres, 40 years is a milestone to be celebrated. Four decades after its founding, Cinecenta is still a community staple for students and the general public alike. Doug Sprenger, once a 17-year-old student film buff, founded Cinecenta in 1971 when he started showing films on 16 mm film two nights a week in what is now the David Lam Auditorium. Just four years later, Cinecenta was moved into its current home — the 302-seat cinema, located in the Student Union Building (SUB). Despite the long history of screening films, not much has changed at Cinecenta. Films are now shown using 35-milimetre film, as well as digital projectors to show DVDs and Blurays. But the same, diverse mix of recent and classic Hollywood films, as well as documentaries, foreign films and independent films still make up Cinenta’s lineup. Cinecenta also continues to participate in film festivals such as the Antimatter Film Festival in October and Latin American and Spanish Film Week in September. As a non-profit business of the UVic Students’ Society, student fees, as well as revenue brought in by ticket sales, fund Cinecenta. Manager Lisa Sheppard and Programmer Michael Hoppe are the only non-students on staff. Like the rest of the businesses in the SUB, Cinecenta is otherwise staffed by undergrads — providing work opportunities on campus. Despite being located in the SUB, Sheppard says, “over half of our customers are nonstudent. Having been in Victoria for 40 years, we are a really beloved institution.”

Cinecenta acts as a sort of community for some. “A lot of older women feel so comfortable here, feel more of a community and they feel really safe,” said Sheppard. “It’s more intimate and you’re more likely to run into people you know.” Over the 40 years, Cinecenta has seen some exciting events. The theatre played host to local filmmaker Atom Egoyan as he screened his short films, before he was the famous feature length director he is today. A peculiar incident involving bomb scares and Disney films also makes up some of Cinecenta’s history. The night of a sold out showing of Fantasia in the David Lam Auditorium, there was a bomb scare which forced the showing to be evacuated. It is thought the call possibly came from a disgruntled film patron who was turned away from the sold-out show. Ironically, decades later in 2000, Cinecenta was showing Fantasia’s sequel Fantasia 2000 when the University received another bomb scare, causing the showing once again to be evacuated. In celebration of its 40th anniversary, a new Cinecenta logo, inspired by the 1971 Stanley Kubrick film A Clockwork Orange, was designed. There is also a special door prize that is to be given out at the “Mystery Movie” night in November. The future of Cinecenta looks bright. There will be a digital update by 2013 to industrywide standards. There is also hope for adopting satellite technology that will allow for stand-up comedy shows, operas and many more events to be shown live. “I’m looking a few years down the line, but maybe [Cinecenta] could be more of an entertainment centre than just movies,” Hoppe envisions.

From Fantasia to A Clockwork Orange, Cinecenta’s movie choices have delighted cinephiles and casual movie-goers alike.

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September 15, 2011 MARTLET

19


SPORTS

They called me Kid Gorgeous. Later on, it was Kid Presentable. Then Kid Gruesome. And finally, Kid Moe.

Vikes rugby teams gather ingredients for success > Tyler Laing With the Rugby World Cup officially underway, excitement for the sport is growing around the globe. And with the Vikes men’s and women’s rugby season starting up in a few days, excitement is building across the UVic campus, too. And just as the World Cup teams rely on the international experience of their players for success, so do the Vikes. Both the men’s and women’s teams feature a number of players who have represented Canada at some level. Struan Robertson, a fourth-year back row with the men, has experience with the Canadian under-20 team. “Any time you have an opportunity to play at that high a level, playing against some of the best guys in the world, it’s a huge confidence boost,” he says. “The experience you get from playing in those games and the pressure situations that arise in those games is invaluable.” Last season, the men’s roster boasted 17 players who’d had time with a national side. “The more guys we have playing at that level and being exposed to those opportunities, the better,” says Robertson. “It’s great for the program.” Bruce Howe, new head coach for the women, says his forwards include players from both the U23 and U19 national levels. “We have a very solid forward pack,” he says. “If we’re going to have a favoured area, it’s the forwards that I want.”

But if experience is the engine that drives success, effective coaching is the grease that ensures it runs smoothly. Although it’s only his first year as head coach, Howe has been around UVic rugby for two decades. He spent the last number of years with the women’s program as assistant coach to Brad Skene. Before that, he was involved with the men’s team. When Skene stepped away at the end of last season for personal reasons, Howe filled the role. Jesse Olynyk, fourth-year number eight with the women, is pleased to have Howe on board. “He’s got more experience than I can ever dream of having, so he’s a great asset,” she says. New, unfamiliar coaches often cause ripples when they come into a program. In this regard, the lady Vikes lucked out. “It’s been great to have him stick around just to keep continuity,” says Olynyk. “We don’t have to rock the boat too much.” On the men’s side, Robertson tips his hat to head coach Doug Tate, as well. “He’s done an amazing job of building a program. You look at the World Cup roster right now and see the number of guys that have either gone through UVic a few years ago or guys that are currently going through UVic.” With a solid combination of coaching and player talent on these teams, both are aiming for post-season success. “For CIS we want to qualify for Canada

Armando Tura

UVic Vike Struan Robertson is looking forward to the rugby season. West [playoffs],” says Olynyk. “Our goals are to beat Calgary and UBC.” Says Robertson, “I think every year the goal is to win the Provincial Championships. I don’t think there’s any point in aiming for anything less than that.”

The women kick off their club season against the Velox Senior Women on Sept.17, and their CIS season at home against Alberta on Sept. 23. The men, who only play club, open their season against the Castaways Wanderers on Sept. 17.

Field hockey team recognizes the need for chemistry > Tyler Laing When a natural disaster interferes with peoples’ lives, those people don’t usually consider themselves to be lucky. But the UVic Vikes women’s field hockey team, who had its preseason Ivy League road trip interrupted by Hurricane Irene, actually benefitted from the disruption. After a 5-1 lashing at the hands of Yale to commence their end-of-August four-game campaign, it looked as though the Vikes would be in for a long, demoralizing week. That is, until providence paid them a visit. The Vikes had been slated to play Harvard a day after the Yale debacle. Not much time to remedy errors or strategize. However, hurricane-turnedtropical-storm Irene blew in and rained out their second game. For most of the Eastern seaboard, this was ill-fortune of the cruellest sort; but according to the Vikes, it wasn’t so bad. “We didn’t get to play that game, but we had sort of a shop talk and I think that actually helped [the team],” says Lynne Beecroft, who is entering her 28th year as head coach. “They played much better.” The Vikes recovered from that first loss, edging out Dartmouth College 3-2 and blanking Brown University 2-0 in their final two games.

Senior Jasleen Aujla shared Beecroft’s opinion of their unexpected day off: “That allowed us a day to really bond as a team and take a day away from field hockey and get to know each other off the field some more. I think it showed because the next games that we played were really great.” This year’s roster has a much younger, less experienced look than last season. A number of veteran players either graduated or took the year off to focus on the 2011 Pan American Games in October. Beecroft brought in several rookies to fill the gaps. Now, she just hopes they’ll gel in time for Saturday’s season opener. “I definitely believe chemistry has to work,” she says. “On paper we don’t have the strongest of players that other teams do in the league, but if we have the right chemistry, again on and off the field, I think we can certainly hold our own in Canada West play.” “Having the rookies that we have obviously means that they aren’t as comfortable with the plays,” says Aujla. “In the past we’ve had a lot of returning players which means that there hasn’t been as much to learn in such a short period of time.” But the players realize this and are putting in the time, as Aujla says, “to get on the same page.”

I think we can certainly hold our own in Canada West play.

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MARTLET September 15, 2011

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Armando Tura

Jasleen Aujla is one of the few veterans on the Vikes field hockey team this year. “I think there’s a great recognition from each of the players that this is going to . . . take a lot from each of us. We’re all just ready to work hard, running in the mornings and training extra,” she adds. Beecroft appreciates the team’s enthusiasm to work. “They’re a good group of kids and I think

they’re willing to learn and willing to get better. I’m always keen to coach teams like that.” The Vikes women’s field hockey season gets underway on the road this weekend with a Saturday-Sunday doubleheader against Calgary.


SCIENCE & TECH

SCIENCE FACT: A chameleon’s tongue is twice the length of its body.

UVic scientist earns Canada’s highest academic honour > Karolina Karas UVic astronomy professor Julio Navarro has been elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada for work in his field. The distinction is considered by many to be Canada’s highest academic honour. Navarro studies cosmology: the formation of galaxies and galaxy systems. However, dark matter in relation to galaxies is his main focus of study and the reason for the high honour. Navarro describes dark matter as a “mysterious substance that seems to hold galaxies together.” “We don’t know exactly what it is, but we’re pretty sure it’s there because of its effects on stars and the motions of stars.” Navarro’s research, in partnership with other universities around the world, primarily uses large computer simulations in order to infer the universe’s formation. “We try to seed the computer with what we think the universe was, very close to the Big Bang,” explains Navarro. “Then we see how the whole thing evolves. We follow the equa-

We use the motions of stars as relics, like archaeology of how the whole galaxy was assembled.

tions of physics but with particular conditions, which are suggested to us by observations. Then we see how, for example, what model for dark matter is preferred, based on the evidence today and what the computer would tell us.” Because little is known of dark matter, multiple simulations are done on computers to rule out certain possibilities of its makeup. “If dark matter was this particle or this other possibility, it would lead to different distributions of galaxies on a large scale,” Navarro adds. Navarro is involved in two international projects related to his studies, the Radial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) and the Virgo Consortium. The Virgo Consortium is a European-based collaboration that also focuses on cosmology and large computer-based simulations. RAVE, an Australian-based study, measures how fast or slow stars are moving toward us or away from us in our galaxy. The results, Navarro says, further help infer the galaxies’ formations and the role of dark matter. “Basically, we use the motions of stars as

Julio Navarro.

provided

relics, like archaeology of how the whole galaxy was assembled,” Navarro says of the project. Because of this work, Navarro was elected into the Royal Society of Canada. The society is essentially an academy featuring Canada’s best and leading members of academia in the arts and sciences. “Professionally, it’s a recognition of your peers that your work has substantial impact over the years,” says Navarro. Geologist Dante Canil, another UVic scientist, was also inducted into the society.

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DIVERSIONS & COMICS

Lisa needs braces. Dental Plan. Lisa need braces. Dental Plan.

Seeing Stars Horoscopes for the week of Sept. 15 - by Candace O’Neill Capricorn (Dec.22 - Jan.19): Things on the work front are getting a little tense these days. Avoid the urge to lose control and butt heads with a coworker. You are better off biting your tongue and biding your time this week.

Cancer (June21 - July22): Changes can be scary, Cancer, but they are also necessary and realistically unavoidable. Don’t let your fear of the unknown inhibit you from making a move in the right direction this week.

Aquarius (Jan.20 - Feb.18): Things just aren’t working out as you had hoped, Aquarius, so now you have a decision to make — staying the course is no longer an option. Trust your gut to guide you in the right direction.

Leo (July23 - Aug.22): Avoid the temptation to get wrapped up in any workplace gossip this week. Focus on keeping the peace and avoiding controversial situations. How you conduct yourself now will greatly affect you in the weeks to come.

Pisces (Feb.19 - Mar.20): This week is the perfect time to start up a new project or to perhaps finish off an old one. Your creativity and organizational abilities are at their peak, so be proactive and use them to your advantage!

Virgo (Aug.23 - Sept.22): Stirring up trouble to cure your boredom this week probably isn’t the best of ideas. Try to find something to occupy your time that won’t leave a trail of destruction behind you.

Aries (Mar.21 - Apr.19): Now is not the time to be daring. You are much better off laying low and keeping things as simple as possible this week. You’re best to save any grand gestures or bold moves for another week.

Libra (Sept.23 - Oct.22): You’ve got a new-found sense of confidence, and others around you are starting to take notice of the new you — on both the romantic front and at work. Don’t be afraid to show ’em what you’re made of, Libra.

Taurus (Apr.20 - May20): Your communication skills are soaring high this week, so use them to your advantage. Networking and socializing will result in new partnerships that will carry you far in the weeks to come.

Scorpio (Oct.23 - Nov.21): If someone is constantly letting you down, then it may be time to cut them loose. If you continue to rely on this individual, then you only have yourself to blame. Follow your instincts.

Gemini (May.21 - June20): Push yourself to be a bit more productive on the home front this week, Gemini. While it may seem like a lot of extra work, your efforts will not be overlooked.

Sagittarius (Nov.22 - Dec.21): Don’t get caught up in minor details this week, Sagittarius, or you’ll drive yourself insane! Focus on the bigger picture at hand. Things will become much clearer and life will be much more enjoyable.  

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COMICS! COMICS@MARTLET.CA EVENTS Pacific Peoples’ Partnership presents:

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4th annual One Wave Festival! Art, dance, drumming and singing from Indigenous groups of Canada and the South Pacific, Saturday Sept 17. FREE festivities 12-4 in Spirit Square & more! More info: pacificpeoplespartnership.org

UVic student/performer Jake West & the Canadian Pacific Ballet combine ballet, circus and laughs! “The Audition” at Merridale Farms, September 18 More info: jakewest.ca

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September 15  

Issue 6, Volume 64

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