m y p l i c Torc O e h T tes a blazing de h igni
UVic gets a “C” in campus sustainability, p. 3 Women’s ﬁeld hockey coach causes buzz, p. 12 Spoken word festival storms Victoria Victoria,, p. 15 Centre a reprieve for sexual sexual assault survivors, p. 18
November 5, 2009
•Next week is reading break! We won’t be printing because we’ll be hitting the books. Don’t miss us too much. We’ll return Nov. 19, better than ever. Editor Gemma Karstens-Smith
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B.C. Civil Liberties Association stands up for pro-life club by SEAN PETERSON
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The B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) stands behind President Anastasia Pearse (right) and Vice president Catherine Shenton of YPY in their belief that they deserve clubs funding.
“[How] can it be the case that sane persons feel harassed by the possibility of seeing posters that urge upon them a comparison between the millions of unborn potential humans . . . and genocide?” said Dixon. He says that the UVSS’ continued denial of club funding is “clearly motivated by abhorrence of the pro-life opinions of Youth Protecting Youth.” “What we ﬁnd to be really distasteful [is the] old-fashioned notion that one can motivate the restriction of speech on the basis of simply being offended,” said Dixon. “I think it’s particularly disgraceful for a university, which is supposed to be utterly dedicated to intellectual freedom.” The BCCLA requested an audience with the UVSS to discuss the issue, and explain their position. According to the UVSS, however, an additional meeting to discuss the issue is unlikely.
SOL KAUFFMAN PHOTOS
The B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) is asking the UVic Students’ Society (UVSS) to change their stance on denying club funding to the pro-life organization Youth Protecting Youth (YPY), and they are requesting that the President of UVic and the Minister of Advanced Education intervene if they refuse. The civil liberties watchdog sees the UVSS’ decision to repeatedly deny funding to the club as “an infringement of conscience, opinion and, ultimately, speech,” said John Dixon, director of the BCCLA. The clubs that are approved by UVSS Clubs Council are each entitled to receive $256 this year. Although clubs council approved YPY this semester, the UVSS voted to overturn their decision and deny them funding for the second straight year. Many UVSS board members feel YPY’s methods of promoting the pro-life movement are offensive, or even constitute harassment. The issue is about whether students’ money should be given to a club that harasses students, said director-at-large Christine Comrie at an Oct. 5 board meeting. Controversy surrounded YPY earlier this month, when they brought controversial pro-life advocate Stephanie Gray to campus to debate abortion. Gray visits campuses around the world using shocking images that compare abortion to the Holocaust. The club’s affiliation with Gray is a sign that YPY is becoming more radical, said UVSS Director of Student Services Heather McKenzie at the Oct. 5 meeting. McKenzie is also chair of the Clubs Council. The BCCLA dismisses the idea that promoting a point of view constitutes harassment.
“[The Olympics] just seems like a big party distracting from the problems of the day,”
“I think it’s a lost cause for the protesters. They might as well just embrace the Olympics. We’ve already spent the money,”
“I’m not really for the Olympics ... we could be spending a lot more money on things like safe injection sites and dealing with homelessness,”
“I think [the Olympics] is something we should be proud of ... it’s something that’s happening — deal with it, ”
Women’s Studies, second-year
French and English, ﬁfth-year
This week the Martlet asks: Does the Olympic Torch light your ﬁre? 2 NEWS
“I’m not sure if the board as a whole will react, because the board of directors has made its decision,” said UVSS Chairperson Veronica Harrison. “It’s a decision that has been made several times before.” McKenzie feels that the issue was discussed thoroughly already, and an audience with the BCCLA is unwarranted. “[The BCCLA has] a very distanced perspective, where they don’t have all of the information,” she said. “It’s up to YPY whether they want to appeal [the decision].” But Dixon said the BCCLA is unwilling to go away without a ﬁght. They have sent letters to UVic President David Turpin and Minister of Advanced Education Moira Stilwell, asking them to intervene if the UVSS does not reverse their decision. “We take these issues seriously,” said Dixon. “We don’t respond positively to being blown off.”
STR EETE RS
November 5, 2009
UVic gets a “C” on report card by GRAHAM BRIGGS UVic got a “C” in this year’s College Sustainability Report Card (CSRC), down from the “B+” it received last year. The reason for the plunge: UVic did not return any of the CSRC’s surveys. The CSRC, an initiative of the Sustainable Endowments Institute (SEI), ranks environmental sustainability efforts at over 300 North American universities. Each school is sent four surveys to ﬁll out and return; they are then graded in nine categories. UVic was the only Canadian university that did not return any of the surveys. The University of Waterloo returned just one survey and was hit with a “D+” grade. Neil Connelly, UVic’s director of Campus Planning & Sustainability, says UVic’s Sustainability Co-ordinator position was vacant when the surveys were sent in June. The SEI sent the surveys to the previous Sustainability Co-ordinator’s e-mail, but UVic never got them. “June was awkward in the sense that the position was vacant,” said Connelly. “July, we spent in the recruitment process, and the new co-ordinators didn’t start until August.” The SEI contacted Connelly in August, wondering why UVic hadn’t returned the surveys. Connelly explained, but by then it was too late for UVic to complete the surveys. Connelly says that if UVic had returned the surveys, “we would have been at B+, or perhaps higher this year.” But since the CSRC relies mainly on data from the surveys to grade schools, UVic got pummeled. UVic’s marks in the Transportation, and in the Food & Recycling categories went from an “A” last year to a “D” this year. “That doesn’t make sense,” said Connelly. “It just doesn’t, given the things that are going on here [at UVic]. From an alternative transportation point-of-view, there are more people coming to campus by cycling and transit than in previous years — there are fewer cars on campus.” Connelly noted that UVic’s Board of Governors passed a Sustainability Policy last March, and that a Sustainability Advisory Committee
UVic’s grade on the College Sustainability Report Card dropped dramatically this year, because the university did not return their surveys.
is being formed to help implement UVic’s Sustainability Action Plan. Not affected by the survey blunder, UVic’s mark for Investment Priorities was unchanged at “C,” putting UVic among the worst-performing schools in the category. Millions of dollars of UVic’s endowment are invested in environmentally-harmful sectors like Alberta’s Tar Sands. UVic’s endowment does not include any renewable energy or community development funds. The UVic Foundation, a charity, handles UVic’s endowment. UVic’s Endowment Management Policy makes no mention of sustainability, and the UVic Foundation’s invest-
ment strategy does not involve any ethical considerations. UVic Foundation Chair Lisa Hill was unavailable for comment. UVic Foundation Treasurer and UVic’s Associate Vice President of Finance and Operations Kristi Simpson, did not return calls by press time. Connelly could not comment on the UVic Foundation’s investment policies. Next year, however, UVic will be sure to ﬁll out and return next year’s CSRC surveys, he said. “I think we’ll be well-positioned and we should be improving upon or maintaining a B+,” he said. To read the full report card, visit greenreportcard.org.
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CSRC 2010 How Canadian universities with endowments over $150 million scored: - University of Alberta: B+ - University of British Columbia: B+ - University of Calgary: B+ - York University: B+ - University of Toronto: B - Queen’s University: B- University of Saskatchewan: C+ - McMaster University: C+ (No dining or student surveys) - University of Guelph: C (No student survey) - University of Victoria: C (No surveys at all) - University of Western Ontario: C - University of Manitoba: C- (No endowment or student surveys) - University of Waterloo: D+ (No campus, dining or endowment surveys)
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CFS still lobbies for change, despite criticism by KAILEY WILLETTS “Education Shouldn’t Be a Debt Sentence.” That is one campaign the Canadian Federation of Students B.C. (CFS-BC) launched this past October, targeting the growing debate that the CFS’s lobbying efforts have fallen short. The debt campaign, which was unanimously adopted by members of CFS-BC at their Annual General Meeting (AGM), contains four demands: the establishment of a student grants program, tuition fee reduction, an increase to core funding and the elimination of interest on B.C. student loans. “Student debt has really skyrocketed in the last eight years,” said CFS-BC chairperson Shamus Reid, referring back to when the provincial government lifted a freeze on tuition. “We’re looking to see the government committing to some action for the next three years.” Student members of CFS-BC have been circulating a petition and have letters available at debtsentence.ca that students can send to their MLAs and to Minister of Advanced Education Moira Stilwell. Reid says sending the letters will create pressure on the government to act. In 2004, CFS-BC gathered 40,000 signatures and the government “did a 180” on their approach to postsecondary education, he said. “The work we’ve been doing over the past eight years has really built
public support,” said Reid. Reid also says that CFS-BC will bring the four-point plan to local MLAs and to Stilwell. “Ultimately, we’ll be coordinating (as a federation) meetings with local MLA’s,” said Reid. The campaign is an example of lobbying efforts by the CFS-BC, who also run the “We Ride” campaign to improve transit. CFS also lobbies on the national level. During the recent Lobby Day on Parliament Hill (which takes place during the federal government’s budget consultation period), the CFS presented members of Parliament and the Senate with its “Canada’s Education Action Plan,” a tongue-in-cheek play on the federal government’s Economic Action Plan. According to CFS National Chair Katherine Giroux-Bougard, student representatives from across the country came to Ottawa and met with more than 150 Members of Parliament and the Senate. The student representatives presented ﬁve key recommendations: step in and take leadership in post secondary education, improve research capablities of post-secondary education (such as having Statistics Canada research effective policies in increasing access to education), increase the money going in to the new Canada student grant program, increase funding for Ca-
UVSS members show off petitions from the latest CFS-BC campaign, “Education Shouldn’t Be a Debt Sentence.”
nadian graduate scholarships and increase funding for the program that increases Aboriginal students’ access to education. “I think the lobby week was actually quite successful and it really highlighted the fact that post-secondary education isn’t an issue of the left or the right,” said GirouxBougard. “Members of all parties were very supportive of recommendations put forth by the federation.” However, the effectiveness of the CFS’ lobbying efforts has been a topic of debate lately. Several campuses across the country are circulating petitions to hold a refer-
endum on CFS membership. Many of the organizers of the petitions have criticized the CFS as being an ineffective lobbying organization. One criticism has been that the leftist nature of the CFS alienates the organization from the current Liberal provincial government. However, Reid says this is not the case. “The provincial government largely alienated itself from students when it doubled tuition fees,” he said. However, he says pressure from CFS-BC caused the government to reinvest in post-secondary education after removing the tuition freeze.
“Governments respond to public pressure,” Reid said. Reid added the CFS has a wellestablished, long-term relationship with the government that allows them to arrange meetings with MLAs, despite not being registered as a lobby group in B.C. Reid refutes the claim that the CFS is ineffective, and adds that the organization’s strength comes from its numbers. “Essentially, what we are is the framework that student unions have developed to work with on a democratic basis,” he said. “We’re less effective if we’re not united.”
Making economies for the people, not the proﬁt by CHESLEY RYDER Is it possible to have an economy for people instead of for proﬁt? In a recession that has left many in the dust, the British Columbia Institute for Cooperative Studies (BCICS), is trying to ﬁnd out. The research center, located at UVic, has been serving the community for eight years now: educating, researching and providing resources for cooperatives. “Especially because of the crisis we need an economy that works for the people,” said BCICS Director Ana Maria Peredo. Peredo says what’s needed is a community-based economy with
the goal of providing for the needs of the group without proﬁt getting in the way. Peredo says this is a way of “remaking the economy,” instead of allowing people to get caught up in what she calls “a false sense of prosperity,” which causes people to lose everything. Peredo said what people need instead is a sense of community where the economy isn’t just about the money, but about the socialization. The community-based economy actively advances opportunity for capacity building and social cohesion, offering a more adaptive capacity to recover from economic, environ-
mental, political and social crisis. “Economy should be embedded in society, not separate,” said Peredo. BCICS looks to provide a place for many forms of cooperation to occur, whether through food or work, or through meeting other social, economic or cultural needs. The centre hopes that it can be a place for discussions about different forms of cooperation, social innovations and policies. They host forums, seminars, workshops and a monthly speaker series that features presentations by UVic academics, graduate students, visiting faculty and community practitioners discussing
ideas and initiatives in cooperative economy from a range of disciplines and perspectives. New to the institute this year is a Research Fellowship Program, which aims to create discussions about community-based economies. “[The Research Fellowship Program will] build a community of researchers that are interested in learning about the ways in which people come together to provide for the community’s needs,” said Peredo. Currently, the Community Research Fellowship has been awarded to a graduate student from UVic who is working to preserve
the social economy in impoverished indigenous communities and to revitalize traditional ecological knowledge. One Community Research Fellowship has also been awarded to a member of the First Nations working group, who is currently working in ﬁsheries and with the First Nations to share her effective methods of ﬁshing during periods of low abundance. Another program BCICS currently has is called the Graduate Research Fellowship. The program has volunteers working with organizations such as the Mustard Seed Street Church, the largest food bank on Vancouver Island. An anthropology graduate student from the University of Alberta is working on her thesis at the Mustard Seed Street Church and is working to try to inﬂuence the practices of food-relief in Victoria.
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VIHA cuts: mental risk by MAX VASILEV Those suffering from mental health problems in Victoria may not receive as much help from the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA). Services, staff and an entire wing of the Eric Martin Pavilion (EMP) are being lost as part of the 3.5 per cent cutback, which is affecting the VIHA’s entire system. The cut to took place on Oct. 12, in the wake of provincial funding cuts to health authorities that were announced over the summer. Some of VIHA’s remaining resources will see a redistribution later this year. The EMP’s General Psychiatric Ward is slated for closure, signaling a loss of 15 per cent of psychiatric hospital beds in Victoria — equaling a loss of about 10 beds. NDP Health Critic Adrian Dix has asserted that this loss comes at the expense of in-need patients, but VIHA Director for Mental Health and Addictions Services Alan Campbell says the beds will be redistributed into other sections of the EMP, or were being emptied anyway. “We always see quite a turnover here [in the EMP],” said Campbell. “What we’ve done over the last few weeks is hold off on vacated beds until we had 10 beds blocked. Once they were blocked, we took them out of service.” Campbell admits that having 10 fewer beds is still a challenge to deal with, especially since the EMP is still continually accepting more in-need patients. But he sees the decision as a necessary one. “When the [patients] are here, they’re considered acute,” Campbell said. “What we’ve done here, is expedite the speed of transferring Alternate Level Care [ALC] patients (patients no longer requiring active treatment) into the residential care they are waiting for.” But, Dix says the loss will make a bad situation worse by increasing the already-existing shortage of acute care beds. And the cuts don’t only affect acute care — preventative care is also taking a hit. Six psychiatric case managers, community-based caregivers who are responsible for the general
November 5, 2009
Sock drive makes for dry feet by BROOKE ENGLISH
well-being of up to 50 patients each, were pink-slipped last month. With these six case managers gone, 300 patients will be dropped from the program, or reshuffled to other support workers. Dix believes that, without regular monitoring, these patients will deteriorate until they reach a crisis, and will again wind up in the emergency room or the police department. “We will be losing all the progress we have painstakingly made. The system is being turned into a revolving door, as patients will be turned out onto the street, only to return later with the exact same problems,” Dix said. Meanwhile, VIHA is looking to redistribute its reduced resources across the Island. Reportedly, Cowichan receives 58 cents of mental health spending for every dollar Victoria gets. Dix stressed that cutting Victoria’s services is not the answer. Standardizing services often just means bringing things down to the lowest common denominator, he said. Campbell disagrees, however. “The net effect of all of this is certainly that there will be less service available in the Victoria area — there’s no way to skirt around that,” Campbell said. “But the reason for doing that is transferring it to the Central and North Island areas (like Duncan, Courtney and Port Hardy) where they do not have enough funds to deal with even the most severe cases.” Dix argues that a recession should play no role in setting a health care budget and the level of service provided. If anything, he said, health services should be increased. “It’s tough to reduce services in any areas where people need it … But, I tell you, it’s the right things to do,” Campbell said. “Others are way worse off, and have been hit much harder than us. There are people out there with more family troubles, more addictions, more problems. And when people in those places loose their livelihood, they need any help we can give them.” - with ﬁles from Danielle Pope
What do socks and condoms have in common? Both these essential items were present at the twice-yearly Harm Less Students for Harm Reduction sock drive this past week in the Student Union Building (SUB). The drive lasted from Oct. 26 to 28, with condoms being handed out to promote a better-known kind of harm reduction. “We focus a lot on the homeless and poverty,” said Hollie Johnson, co-president and co-founder of Harm Less. These issues are sources of much community concern and debate, Johnson said. However, she noted they’re not easy to relove. The sock drive received as much as last year. Large bags of socks, hats, or jackets were given by single donors. Donations are sent to AIDS Vancouver Island (AVI), a community-based AIDS organization, and are distributed to those in need of winter gear and dry socks. Many of AVI’s clients are homeless or live in low-income housing, said Johnson. “Even though you know [a sock drive] doesn’t change the world, it changes a life,” she said. Harm Less has eight core members, as well as over 50 members who signed up at the UVic Students’ Society (UVSS) Clubs and Course Union Days in September. Future plans for the club include either a movie night or information
Last-minute donations to the Sock Box were important, Harm Less said.
session next term. The group is also implementing a new Party Safe program, speciﬁcally geared toward UVic students. The proposed program entails Harm Less members handing out free condoms, water and taxi numbers on campus to ensure students stay safe while they have fun. “If you’re going to make a decision that is potentially harmful, our goal is to reduce any harm to yourself and anyone else,” said Johnson. AVI also ran Victoria’s Cormorant St. needle exchange, which was shut down in June 2008. It was one of the oldest ﬁxed-site needle exchanges in all of Canada. Needle-exchange services continue with a mobile exchange. But according to a Septem-
ber 2008 Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) study, the number of needles given out has dropped 23 per cent, from 35,000 per month at the ﬁxed site to 27,000 from the mobile unit in August 2008. In contrast, a new ﬁxed-site needle exchange in Vancouver has seen an increased number of people bringing their drug use off the streets, as well as increases in the number of people using counselling and addiction services, said Johnson. Under the Rug Victoria, a Martlet documentary about harm reduction in Victoria, is available on Youtube. For more information on Harm Less and how to get involved, contact Emily Beinhaur at ebeinhau@ uvic.ca.
Let’s play cops and zombies: protest takes over torch relay JESS-C HALL
Five hours marching through a dark and stormy night, surrounded by mixed opinions, still the living dead pressed on by BRONWYN LAWRIE and KAT ESCHNER
The undead aren’t usually political. They made an exception during the Olympic Torch Relay on Oct. 30. Masked and unmasked zombies swarmed the streets in force to protest the Olympics, which they called an abuse of public money and public rights. The Zombie March, organized by No-2010 Victoria, took almost five hours, much of it in the rain. It disrupted the torch route in several places near downtown. The event had almost 400 participants, according to organizers. Zombie marchers came under fire by the public and mainstream media during and after the event, for disrupting the torch. Torchbearers were transported in vans around protest sites, and some people missed their opportunities to see coworkers, friends, or family carry the torch. “I do acknowledge that it probably stinks on the individual level for people,” noted organizer Mik Turje. However, Turje also noted No2010’s concerns were systemic, instead of the individual concerns of torchbearers. Issues of poverty, misspending, colonialism and the effects of the Olympics on Victoria and Vancouver were the main issues that No-2010 was protesting, Turje said. “I think the Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) are very invested in having the individual stories of the individual torchbearers become more important than the systemic issues,” Turje noted. “Because, you know whose individual stories we’re not hearing, right? We’re not hearing about the people on the streets, we’re not hearing about the people who have been affected due to gentrification, we’re not hearing so many of the marginalized stories.” Turje noted individual losses during the Torch Relay were “a drop in the bucket of the systemic issues.” Accompanied by a marching band composed of UVic students, protesters traced a long and winding route out of Centennial Square, through Chinatown and along the waterfront. They stopped at Douglas and Fort at about 5:30 p.m., before moving up Fort and then down Cook. The parade was closely watched by a squad of approximately 50 police officers, drawn from local police detachments and the RCMP. Officers surrounded the crowd, even mingling with it at times. “They were definitely blockading the torch route,” noted Victoria Police Department Spokesperson Sgt. Grant Hamilton. “Rather than sending the torchbearer into that crowd of people and then our officers having to have a confrontation with the protestors, we just bypassed that intersection.” Hamilton noted that every situation police deal with is case-specific. They would intervene if people or property were in danger. “You have to balance that against those individuals’ right to
“I got to lead the entire procession dressed in a spandex onesie,” said Mik Turje. “So, that was pretty much the highlight for me.” Turje carried a mock torch made out of a toilet plunger, intended to show where the Olympics was headed. While police and protestors each held firm lines, tension between the two groups remained controlled. However, protestors were very cautious of the police presence, especially after dusk fell and heavy rains set in. Organizers were prepared to call it a day when faced with a “psychological barrier” of police right before they reached the legislature, but, in the end, they chose to continue on to the evening festivities.
protest. To avoid confrontation, do you allow the torch to continue on through, or do you have to divert it to avoid that confrontation because you’re worried about public safety?” he asked. “The BCCLA said despite a few incidents where cops were in protestors’ faces, everything was pretty low-key. The reverse was true. Protestors were in cops’ faces calling them ‘effing pigs’ and saying ‘eff you,’ and our officers showed great restraint and composure when that was going on,” he said. Protester and UVic student Shannon Lucy felt the protest was a success.
“We didn’t know we’d be able to get anywhere near the legislature buildings, but we went on to the lawns and voiced our dissent extremely clearly and vocally,” she said. “It was absolutely amazing.” Despite fears of a potential police crackdown on protesters, there were no arrests. The only visible attempted violence came when some protesters- who were not known to No-2010 organizersthrew marbles at the feet of the seven horses being ridden by the mounted squad. However, Turje said the incident was blown out of proportion in the media. The protestors are be-
ing cast as violent terrorist-type figures, Turje said. “We’re not that,” she said. “But they want to create it... I think it speaks to how much the media is invested in making the Olympics work for them.” She pointed out that mainstream B.C. and Canada papers- including Victoria’s own Times Colonistare official Olympic “suppliers.” “We’re just a bunch of people,” Turje said. “We have our meetings in each other’s living rooms.” Hamilton also said legal observers who were present posed a difficulty for police. The observers would crowd around police during
any officer-protestor interaction, he said. “To say they’re legal observers I think is a bit of a stretch; I think they’re more of a cop watch, that’s what they are,” he said. David Eby of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) felt good about the way the event worked out. “I thought [the event] was a really positive start for free expression around the Olympics,” said Eby. Eby and legal observers trained by the BCCLA were those Hamilton took issue with. So long as people are continually allowed to protest along the torch route and during the games, he said the BCCLA would have little reason to raise issues. He noted their concerns continue in Vancouver, with the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games bylaw. “If the worst security threat to the Olympics is a delay in traffic, or a delay to the torch’s arrival, or a three or four-block rerouting of the torch, then I think we’re doing very well,” he noted. “I think that on balance, protecting free speech over a concern about inconvenience in terms of someone’s expectation of a particular route for the torch is probably a pretty decent balance to strike.” Some members of the public seemed to agree with Eby. “I love the fact that we can do this in Canada,” bystander Dan Johnson commented as protestors passed Bastion Square. “If this was China, they’d all be rounded up and pushed off somewhere.” Victoria resident Daniel Plesu had his own thoughts on the matter, which he commented on at the corner of Fort and Cook, where the protestors stopped. “I think it’s fair for people to assemble. And it’s fair to voice their opinions. I’m not sure if taking over the streets is really the best means, but if this gets the message out, sure,” he said. However, others said the protestors were out of line. “I may even agree with some of their points, not all of them certainly, but I really don’t think spoiling the party now that it’s here is the thing to do,” said onlooker Don Moffat, who stood at the side of the road with his thumbs down. Canada has committed to the Olympics, Moffat said, and Canadians should now do their best to deal with the events that ensue. He thought the protestors should “do it another time and not spoil it for anybody else.” “I think it’s being rude, and I don’t think that it’s being Canadian, actually,” he said.
November 5, 2009
Accidental VANOC recording silences Songhees chief’s greeting by KAT ESCHNER First Nations leaders brought the Olympic ﬂame to the Legislature — and Songhees Chief Robert Sam lost his opportunity to welcome it, to the clear female tones of the Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) pre-recorded announcer. In the middle of Sam’s address to the large crowd at the Oct. 30 beginning of the torch relay, concert speakers boomed a welcome to dignitaries who included Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Premier Gordon Campbell and the CEO of the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), an official Olympic sponsor. Sam retreated, and Esquimalt Chief Andrew Thomas stepped forward after the announcement to make his address. Unlike the evening festivities, which were put together by the Victoria Spirit Committee, the morning event was coordinated by VANOC, who could not be reached for comment. But the Spirit Committee’s Alice Bacon said she was under the impression the announcement couldn’t be stopped once it started playing. “It’s disgusting,” said crowd member Ralph Burgharbt, owner of Victoria’s Budget Break and Muffler. Sam had his own feelings.
Indigenous leaders paddled the Olympic ﬂame into Victoria’s inner harbour on Friday, Oct. 30.
“I’m not saying it’s all right, but I think this event was bigger than we were,” he said after the event. If he had not been interrupted, Sam said he would have welcomed the four Vancouver First Nations chiefs to traditional Songhees and Esquimalt territory. “I think, for a long time, the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations have been out of sight and out of mind,” he said. “This was one of the events that would tell people, we are still here. That’s one of the things we
didn’t get to say. And I think it was a chance to show the people of Victoria, and British Columbia and the world that our culture is still alive.” Sam said the Olympics offers opportunity for the indigenous peoples of B.C. He also noted that the children of the current adult generation will probably end up paying for the Olympics. No-2010 Victoria protestors were present throughout the day, including several at morning events. Members chanted “no Olympics on
stolen native land.” The slogan is also on No-2010 Victoria stickers. Sam said this was inappropriate. “If there’s anybody who’s going to be talking about stolen land, it’s us, not some outside group,” he said. “If they want to really support us, they should be coming to some of these negotiating meetings and expressing their opinions, or trying to inﬂuence their MLAs, or their local politicians.” Another widely-publicized talking point related to the indigenous
role in the Olympic games was the notable presence of people wearing authentic Cowichan sweaters. Their distinctive patterns were visible throughout the day downtown. Heather Campbell, a member of the Startlip Band, said she won’t go into the Bay since they started manufacturing the controversial made-in-China Cowichan sweaters. She wore her own authentic sweater on Friday. Fran House, a Chilliwack native who came to town for the start of the Torch Relay, said her Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) knockoff is extremely comfortable, but she thinks the contract should have gone to the Cowichan. Bacon said the Victoria Spirit Committee’s only part in the morning events was bringing VANOC together with local indigenous leaders, and connecting them with schools to bring in the droves of red-wearing schoolchildren who ﬁlled space before the stage centre. Mayor Dean Fortin attended the morning event wearing an official Vancouver 2010 four-nations tie, which shows the faces associated with the Four Host First Nations, Lil’wat, Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh.
Five-ring circus festival festive by KAT ESCHNER It was a ﬁve-ring circus on Friday, Oct. 30, as No-2010’s anti-Olympics festival ﬁlled Centennial Square, responding to the official opening events of the Olympic Torch Relay. The celebration, aptly titled “Five Ring Circus: An Anti-Olympic Festival,” featured the Poverty Games, which included events such as Shopping Cart Races, Jump Through the Hoops of Poverty and Queer Wrestling. The wrestling event, which got the crowd cheering as organizers battled one another in the guise of pairs (like Olympic top-cop Bud Mercer and an anonymous protestor), was judged before the fake International Olympic Committee (IOC). No-2010 festival organizer Tamara Herman wore the IOC trenchcoat, and declared no medals could be given out since the athletes weren’t of an identiﬁable gender, and one was a goat. About 400 people showed up to the festival, which saw notable concentrations of media, legal observers and police. Food Not Bombs provided munchies. Harm Reduction Victoria (HRV) also set up a table. “We’re here not only to potentially provide supplies to people who need them, but to also be an official presence and just a reminder that we think that there are priorities that need to be addressed in the city and the province,” said HRV tabler Heather Hobbs. “Over six billion dollars are being spent on the Olympics.” It’s important that events like the festival happen in response to the Olympic Torch, she said, adding that they show that there are lots of people who don’t support the Olympics. Hobbs offers insight into a distinction often made by those with anti-Olympic sentiments. “I don’t support the Olympic industry. I don’t support the amount of cash and resources that are going into it,” she said. But, she added, she has no problem with sports or sporting events. “Frankly, the Olympics is not about sports,” she said. “It’s about corporate sponsorship and greed and proﬁt and political gain and it’s so much beyond
November 5, 2009
Full of UVic burgers, students and staff waved the torch through campus.
UVic forks up for torch relay JESS-C HALL
A procession at the No-2010 festival featured zombie salmon and sea lice hand puppets, representing B.C.’s environmental problems.
just sports. That’s what I oppose: the amount of cash and resources that’s going into something when there’s a signiﬁcant portion of our population that’s not getting their basic needs met.” Her sentiments were echoed throughout the numerous speeches made at the event. Speakers ranged from well-known Victoria activist Zoe Blunt to the brother of a Pickton victim who spoke about the Highway of Tears, a stretch of the Yellowhead Highway where many Aboriginal movement have disappeared. “We’ve heard time and again ‘we can’t afford a solution to homelessness; education costs too much; healthcare is a drain on public resources and we can’t afford to save the planet from impending environmental disaster,’” said No2010 member Danielle Hagel in one speech. “But we can pour six billion dollars into a one-week party that will beneﬁt corporate sponsors and business owners at the expense of the rest of us.” Hagel called for a refocusing of social priorities on the issues mentioned above. “We’ve had enough of nationalist corporate sports services which put public money in private hands. We refuse to submit to VANOC. We have mobilized today for a day of resistance, and we are sending a clear
message,” Hagel said. “The Olympics will face resistance here on Coast Salish territory and across the country. No Olympics on stolen native land!” Political Science grad student Mark Willson brought his four-year-old son, Hector, to the festival. He remembers going to protests as a child in 1983. “I think it does give you something to remember when you’re growing up about important events ... and sometimes, I think about police presence at these kinds of things and I think it’s good to have kids around, just for a more carnival-ey feeling,” he said. At 5:20 p.m.- right before Queer Wrestling- the Martlet counted 50 police in and around Centennial Square, not including two who watched from an adjacent rooftop throughout the festival. Herman said the police presence was much as expected. “There’s no reason we should be under surveillance,” Herman said. “It’s a waste of money. We’re just organizing a festival and a rally.” Despite police presence, she said the event went well. “It’s just such an amazing feeling when you’ve put so much work into something and all of a sudden there’s so many people there,” Herman said. “It was well-attended, people’s spirits were really high, it was a lovely afternoon.”
by SEAN PETERSON The Olympic Torch ran through campus for 10 minutes on Friday, Oct. 30, and UVic spent almost $28,000 to celebrate its arrival. UVic Ceremony and Events and campus athletic groups set up tables, games and a free burger barbecue to attract students and the community to Centennial Stadium parking lot, near the torch’s route during its UVic leg. Volunteers dished out $10,000 worth of free burgers and drinks for an hour. Campus athletic groups set up activities such as a slap-shot contest, a ball hockey game, a virtual snowboarding game and a snowboarding ramp, and sports clubs set up information tables. Past Olympians and coaches gave brief speeches about the role of athletics in the UVic community and the university’s dedication to sport. “[The event was] a chance to recognize the Olympians that we have as members of Vikes/UVic Alumni, but also our long tradition of athletic excellence and our many community programs related to recreation,” said Associate Vice President Student Affairs Jim Dunsdon. In addition to the community event, UVic spent $6,750 on a private reception for President David Turpin and guests earlier in the day. After the event, participants made their way to Ring Road to cheer on the torch. Over 500 turned out to witness the torch relay enter UVic at
McGill Road, and travel along Ring Road for 10 minutes before exiting at University Drive and heading towards Oak Bay. Strong support for the 2010 Olympic Games exuded from hundreds of students and the community on hand to see the torch. And while downtown Victoria experienced conﬂict, UVic remained protest-free.The only sign in the crowd was attached to a ski, and read “skis for sale: 100 beers.” Campus Security reported that the relay at UVic was completed without incident. As many as 50 officers and Campus Security oversaw the UVic leg. Police set up barriers and police tape hours before torch arrived, and patrolled the Ring Road with cars, motorbikes and a helicopter overhead. But the authorities needed only to stand by and watch as the crowd cheered the sponsor vehicles and the torch, and sang O Canada. Hundreds waved red Coca-Cola ﬂags and beat miniature Royal Bank tambourines that were passed out beforehand. When they weren’t doing the wave, the crowd made noise worthy of a gold-medal game. UVic was only a brief destination for the torch, and not an official stop. It was passed by three pre-selected torchbearers along Ring Road, and continued its route. The torch ﬁnished the day on the legislature lawn, where it was met by both supporters and protestors.
•It’s reading break. Make this one count and use it to get in touch with editors who can get you on the right track to a publishing dictatorship. Editor Nathan Lowther
AFTER THE TORCH RELAY...
Torch leaves burn marks The Olympic torch blew through Victoria faster than spinach pabulum through a six-month-old. And we residents ﬁnd ourselves left with the particularly grim diaper. The mainstream press would have you believe that it’s no big deal — that the dark and murky remnants of a torch relay ought to merely be wiped up at arms’ length and disposed of with a ginger hand. They would have us assign easy labels to a hard conﬂict, and write it all off. Yet no one who was involved in any of the happenings surrounding the torch relay can deny that Olympic ﬁre burned us — whether they were participating in the events and toting family by the hand, or protesting them by marching like a zombie through the rainy streets. Maybe it’s because the ﬂaming doobie, as some have lovingly nicknamed it, forced us to face basic questions about our society’s central beliefs and our relations to one another. Maybe it’s because nobody’s sure what the “Olympic spirit” actually is — and, really, how many of us want to know? When protestors rocked the Olympic Torch Relay route and police marched alongside them, both sent powerful messages. The Zombie marchers’ increasingly-heated chants of “Home, not games!” and “One, two, three, four, fuck the Olympics!” were an indelible sign that some in society are furious that the Games have come to B.C., to drain resources that could be better spent elsewhere. And police, who walked alongside the protestors for all ﬁve rainy hours of their quest to obstruct the torch route, did not arrest a single one of them. The B.C. Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) and No-2010 organizers have given them cautious props for that. The police stood by their Charter of Rights and Freedoms obligations to protect rights of free speech and peaceful assembly. It can’t have been easy. Pressures came at those officers from all sides — the march was surrounded by angry public, cautious protestors, hungry media and the ever-present Olympic torch, being moved from place to place behind the scenes. While No-2010’s Mik Turje recognized that missing the torch must have sucked for some individual people, Turje also emphasized how much the Olympics contributes to systemic problems of poverty and rights abuses. David Eby of the BCCLA noted that expressing democratic rights often isn’t an easy thing to witness or to do. “But it’s incredibly important that, as a Canadian society, we value the opportunity for people to express themselves over the convenience of the populace on occasion. Because that truly shows our commitment to these democratic values,” he said. On the other hand, bystander Don Moffatt said it was Canadian to make the best of something we’ve committed to, like the Games, without showing the dissent that protestors feel is so vital. Who are we, as British Columbians and as Canadians? Maybe the bottom line is that the Games are happening, whether we like it or not. They’re here — as was made blatantly evident by the corporately manufactured atmosphere of the Torch Relay, and the incessant media reports of where we could see it. And, no matter how loud the protestors are, the official Games events have bigger speakers, more security, and lots of people content to just not cause a fuss. They’ll just turn up the banal, nauseating sentiment of the Games and keep those childish mascots — whatever the hell their names are — dancing. Maybe we should turn from those ﬂashy distractions to more important things: like the questions our brief day in the torch limelight has raised. Is ours a society that holds these Charter ideals higher than any other? What role do our police have? Is freedom of speech just a right, or is it a responsibility too? And is it a responsibility to rock the boat, or to wait politely on the sidelines until all main attractions are gone? Finally picking up this shit could be a useful experience.
Editorial topics are decided on by staff at our weekly editorial meeting at 2:00 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. But sometimes are. 8 OPINIONS
LETTERS Salmon all wet Ruth Salmon’s article on ﬁsh farms angered me. Simply put, there are so many blatantly false points and misleading statements that I am surprised she’s willing to take public credit for it. Sea lice wiping out pink salmon proven false? How? There have been many studies showing this to be just the case. Furthermore, runs survived only when the lice-bearing farmed salmon were not present. Coincidence? Science would say no. To raise any animal, it must consume more than its ﬁnal mass during the process of growth. Feeding ﬁsh to ﬁsh to make ﬁsh isn’t a sustainable equation. In fact, it results in a net loss of ﬁsh. If Ruth Salmon really believes, as she leads us to suspect, that B.C. farmed salmon can feed the millions of starving people in Africa, then why would we be throwing away ﬁsh protein in this conversion? That farmed B.C. salmon would be shipped to Africa is preposterous, but the equation between the two is lacking in some fundamental logic. “Salmon are more efficient to grow than animals on land,” she says. OK, but what does that have to do with the topic? Just because strip mining or clear cutting is more efficient doesn’t mean it is a sustainable method of harvest. Lastly, if ﬁsh farms have been exonerated for blame in the collapse of the Fraser River Sockeye run, then why is there a call for an independent judicial inquiry into this salmon crisis? Check out the website, peterjulian.ndp. ca/node/864. Dylan Hardie UVic student
ACCESS article disappointing I’m disappointed in the Martlet for running the article about the S-Hut
closure, and in ACCESS UVic for even engaging in such a cutthroat campaign. First, most schools in Canada don’t even HAVE extra facilities available for students who need to write exams in a quieter space. Second, the S-Hut building isn’t even the building pictured in the article you ran on Oct 14. That is actually the L-Hut, which is decrepit and falling apart. The S-Hut, on the other hand, has computers at every writing station, heat, carpet and bathrooms. I’m sure it is not the ideal place to write exams for some people, due to the fact it is out of the way and hosts sports teams locker rooms, but it is not by any means falling apart. By inferring that the building is some damp, dark, scary place where disabled students are being banished to write exams is incorrect and slanderous. The Resource Center for Students with a Disability serves to help students with disabilities, not segregate and embarrass them. Why don’t members of ACCESS UVic voice their concerns in a more respectful manner and work with the Resource Centre in order to come up with a better solution before campaigning to take down the current facilities available? I’m ashamed of ACCESS UVic. Dinah Steele UVic student
Your class isn’t important I have good news. The problem with more people wishing to take upperlevel English courses exceeding the spots available is trivial. There are two solutions: increase the tuition for these courses until the revenue exactly equals the cost of instruction, or convince a sufficient proportion of
Canadians to elect a government that will, under threat of imprisonment, compel other Canadians to pay for your English classes. The former allows those who get beneﬁt from courses in Norse forklore or Post-Brechtian Russian theatre to pay for them, the latter uses violence to force others, who get no beneﬁt from upper-level English courses, to pay for them. Which solution do you ﬁnd most compatible with the ideals of a free society? Kailer Mullet UVic grad student
What we know All living creatures know is one thing: how to survive. This is the result of the most basic interactions that take place between molecules, thus a function of energy itself — a concept that accounts for the whole universe as best as we can know it, thus equating with existence. Anything beyond existence is beyond knowing. Therefore, anything beyond energy is beyond knowing. This is manifested through entropy. Entropy says: “fuck it — what’s left?” What we know; all life knows is one thing. Cameron Baum Community member
Happy? Sad? Enraged? Tell us: firstname.lastname@example.org 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. November 5, 2009
GSS disappointed with referendum by MICHAEL LARGE and AMY COX that he provide students a web-link UVic students were recently invited to the GSS website before the votto vote in a non-binding referening began. dum that asked: “Do you support The Associate Vice President the introduction in 2012 of a new athletics and recreation building fee refused on the grounds that UVic’s ballot-related web pages were facto help ﬁnance the proposed new tual and unbiased. But UVic’s web facility and expansion of services?” pages left out important informaOf those students who voted, 59 tion about the fees and the policy. per cent of undergrads said “yes” The GSS website ﬁlled the gaps to the question, while 77 per cent with information that UVic apparof grad students said “no.” Why such a wide gap in opinion between ently didn’t want you to see. Because these many grad two groups? But consent is not the same as informed students It is consent. Why did UVic block the easy received more true that ﬂow of information to undergrad details grad about the students students? fees and don’t use the policy athletics from the GSS, it is no grand leap facilities as much as undergrads to assume that grad students voted do. But there are other compelling on the basis of a more complete reasons behind the widespread graduate student opposition. Some picture. If undergrads weren’t provided of these reasons might surprise you. the big picture to see before they First, the proposed mandatory voted, that might explain the wide athletics fee of $55 per term will be gap in opinion between underin addition to the existing mandagrads and grad students. It seems tory athletics fee of $73 per term, reasonable to think maybe that gap for a grand total of $128 each in opinion was actually a gap in semester. information. Also, the combined fee will not be UVic seems to believe that a as all-inclusive as UVic wants you to “yes” vote based on incomplete believe. Drop-in classes and other information by a small minority of services at the new facility will still the overall student body is enough carry unspeciﬁed user fees. to move toward increasing manAnd the proposed facility would datory fees, contrary to governinclude a seven-story parking ment policy. garage, making it very expensive But consent is not the same as to build, and more convenient for informed consent. Why did UVic people to burn fossil fuels going for block the easy ﬂow of information their workouts. to undergrad students? But there’s at least one more Why is UVic ignoring the Tuition important thing you should have Limit Policy, and why hold a referknown. The proposed increase to endum about a fee increase that is athletics fees represents a whopsimply not allowed in this province? ping 75 per cent increase to a mandatory fee, despite the fact that B.C. Wouldn’t you like to know? We would too. government regulation caps annual Why not send a short email increases to tuition and mandatory (email@example.com) or text to your fees at two per cent. Associate Vice President Student The mandatory “building fee” deAffairs, and ask him? In last week’s scribed in the referendum question Martlet, he was quoted as saying: is exactly the kind of mandatory “building fee” capped by the Tuition “What the students say really does make a difference.” It’s not too late Limit Policy, and therefore violates to have your say. the B.C. government’s policy. Mike Large is the representative for A few days before the referendum grad students in law on the GSS began, the Grad Students’ Society Grad Rep Council. Amy Cox is the (GSS) Director of CommunicaDirector of Communications for the tions wrote to UVic’s Associate Vice GSS. President Student Affairs, asking
Here comes the sun It’s time to shine some light on climate misinformation by MIKE SHUMLICH There is a saying attributed to the Buddha: “these three things cannot be hidden: the sun, the moon and the truth.” Yet one of the most common fabrications found in the climate change misinformation campaign has to do with the sun — that the recent warming trend can be explained by changes in solar irradiance. The hope is that by confusing the public as to whether or not global warming is due to natural causes, the legislation governing greenhouse gas emissions can be delayed. This delay allows business as usual — or rather, emissions as usual — in the face of overwhelming evidence linking mankind’s actions to the warming climate. Luckily, despite being one of the more common pieces of disinformation, it’s also one of the easiest to discredit. And the easiest way to do this is to simply look at the solar irradiation measurements themselves. We have been measuring solar irradiation by satellite since 1979 and, though solar output has cycled up and down over this
cycles, the stratosphere is cooling period, it has shown no overall while the troposphere is warmincrease. ing. All of these observations add When the satellite data is conup to form a pretty clear acquittal trasted with the global temperature (see graphic), it’s pretty clear of solar cycles in global warming. Perhaps the oddest part about that changes in solar irradiation blaming climate change on solar are not responsible for the recent irradiance is the inference that warming. The graph is of total solar irradi- the global community of researchers, working over decades ance (sun rays) and the global on this problem (and including land-ocean temperature index solar output in their models the (waves crashing against shorewhole time) somehow didn’t line) from 1980 to 2006. You can think to consider the sun. see the correlation. Such a proposition is insultWe don’t see the warming pating to the scientists and doubly tern that we would expect were insulting the warmto the gening due to The hope is that by confusing the eral public, a change in the sun’s public as to whether or not global who are output. warming is due to natural causes, the assumed gullible We see legislation governing greenhouse enough to more warmbuy such a ing at the gas emissions can be delayed. tale. poles than When at the equathe data is presented, the lack tor, we see the same warming at of a connection between solar night as during the day and we irradiance trends and the recent see more warming during the warming trend is quite clear for winter than during the summer. all to see. In addition, instead of warming At the end of the day, the truth uniformly as one would expect about the sun and global warmdue to changes in solar irradiance
Olympic torch relay money better spent elsewhere by SYLVIA NICHOLLES I am tired of our government telling us that there is no money for healthcare and education while shelling out for a spectacle such as the Olympic torch relay. As a young woman who is completing her Masters of Arts, I felt compelled to join the protests Friday, Oct. 30. I don’t normally join public protests, but the Vancouver Olympic Games are something my generation is going to be paying off for a long time. And not only in monetary costs, but in social costs as well. I enjoy watching sports and, as an athlete myself, I can appreciate that this part of the Games is important for future athletes and for the athletes competing now. After all, everyone wants to achieve their dreams.
November 5, 2009
of this is to prevent hate crimes, However, the problem is that this is too broad and can be used the athletics aspect of the Games to stifle free speech. A host city has been superseded by corporate has to agree to the Charter, even gains. if the city’s or country’s citizens This has produced an extremely don’t. strong Olympic industry with I do wish to offer a sincere the ability to act politically. Most apology to supportthe people ers of the This has produced an extremely who did not Games strong Olympic industry with get to see do not the torch, see this the ability to act politically. Most aspect. supporters of the Games do not see as they had hoped to, For exthis aspect. due to the ample, in protest. the OlymI also wish to express that protestpic Charter, Rule 51.3 reads: “No kind of demonstration or political, ers are not a homogeneous group; many of us were just as unhappy religious or racial propaganda is with the f-word being tossed permitted in any Olympic sites, around as were those out for the venues or other areas.” While I understand the intention event.
However, it seemed a disgraceful waste of money to have so many police officers assigned to a peaceful event. I did not see anyone except the police trying to instigate trouble (my partner was harassed several times for putting his bandanna up in the rain — he was cold). They did do a good job of crowd control, but how much money was wasted on them all being on duty and paid overtime? I take issue with the fact that it is only when these mega-events occur that the government puts money into infrastructure that should be invested in regardless (transportation infrastructure or athletic/sport buildings and support). I have a problem with the fact that I had no say as to whether or not
the Olympics came to B.C., but I will be paying for it. Finally, I feel as if the short-term beneﬁts of the Olympics (the world’s attention on B.C., the short economic boost, the infrastructure) do not outweigh the long-term costs (displacement of the lower classes, the environmental impact, a further mockery of First Nations’ culture and claims to land and the potential of further security apparatuses being implemented in our cities — to name a few). And lest we forget, the torch relay itself is a product of Hitler’s Nazi regime as a way to spark nationalist pride in the Third Reich. All the previous Olympics simply had a torch lighting ceremony. Sort of puts it in perspective, doesn’t it.
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Don’t stress about video game violence by WILL JOHNSON “I don’t have a gun! I don’t have a I’m crouched nervously in a stone gun!” I cry to no avail right before passageway, tightly clutching my he viciously murders me. grenade launcher. A dark ﬁgure For the record, James is a teddy appears at the end of the corridor, bear. With a slight lisp and a British then ducks out of sight. accent, he’s the sort of guy that girls I sprint towards him, lobbing a throw themselves at. He’s polite, grenade. A plume of smoke trails gentle and thoughtful. But while it as it bounces off the wall and we’re playing Goldeneye, he’s a coldexplodes with a bright ﬂash. I duck blooded killer. as ﬂames lick the ceiling. With the release of Call of Duty: Out of nowhere, a second exploModern Warfare 2 next week, sion knocks me backwards. I barely violence in video get a peek at my assailant as he There’s something cathartic games is again being publicly ﬂees, shooting about watching chunks of debated. back over his bone and brains go ﬂying Mounting conshoulder. cerns surround Grenades exas I shower an enemy with a the idea of video plode everywhere, volley of gunﬁre. games being trapping me used as military behind a wall of recruitment tools and promoting ﬂames. The heat scorches my skin. xenophobia. Finally, a grenade explodes at my I don’t quite buy it, though. feet and I sink to the ground, sizI may not be an expert and I don’t zling, dead. actually play that many video games “Hell yeah!” my buddy James (for years I refused to trust any shouts, jumping up from the couch. game without Mario in the title), Yet again, he’s beaten me at Goldbut I’ll confess that I’ve enjoyed eneye. I know that game came out over 10 years ago, but we still play it massacring zombies, aliens and enemy combatants in a number of religiously. video games. Seriously, no one can beat me at There’s something cathartic about grenade launchers in the temple watching chunks of bone and brains — except for James. go ﬂying as I shower an enemy with It’s gotten to the point where a volley of gunﬁre. James has memorized the locaBut I don’t think that makes me a tions where I reappear after death. violent person. After the ﬁrst kill, he rushes over Maybe it’ll bring some negative and obliterates me before I have a energy into my life, but I doubt it chance to grab a weapon.
makes me any more likely to pick up a gun one day. I’ve never even punched anyone in the face, let alone blown someone to bits with a grenade. I mean, look at the average video game aﬁcionado. Chances are, they’re slightly overweight stoners with little interest in personal hygiene. They’re likely more interested in lazing around eating chips than
being shipped overseas to wage war. So on that front, I don’t think we’ve got anything to worry about. However, as far as promoting negative stereotypes of foreigners, games like MW2 aren’t blameless. We may not be stigmatizing the Russians or the Germans anymore, but now we’re demonizing Arabs. The ﬁrst Call of Duty: Modern Warfare was a thinly-
veiled version of the war on terror. Do we really want to support a game that fosters xenophobia? But I’m grasping at straws here. I don’t think any cognizant person really believes video games are anything more than an amusing pastime. So, if video games are your thing, don’t listen to the haters. Go blow away some imaginary soldiers.
No more happy meals for citizens of Iceland by SEBASTIAN EKLUND Our current global ﬁnancial crisis will have at least one positive effect: Iceland will now be completely devoid of the Golden Arches. McDonald’s, the mightiest of fast food chains, is closing shop and jumping ship. All three franchised stores in the country will be closed as a result of Icelanders getting hit especially hard by the recession. In fact, Iceland was one of the ﬁrst European countries to experience the recession’s effects. The nation of roughly 320,000 people was forced to take a $2.1 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund and saw a signiﬁcant devaluation of the Icelandic krona.
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After the major banks in Reykjavik crashed, Icelanders began criticising the right-wing government for their free market model and blame politicians in part for the crisis. Since 2008, the recession in Iceland started pushing people towards cheaper local goods rather than spending on imported novelties. Icelanders began substituting conspicuous consumption (such as mink and whale sashimi, and lobster tails), for more traditional foods (like black pudding and blood sausage).
This change in consumer choice is a reﬂection of the economic situation and the McDonald’s story is an extension of this. But anyone can afford a Big Mac, right? Wrong. Icelanders pay a beefy $7.44 for the signature Big Mac burger, making Iceland one of the world’s most expensive McDonald’s options. Since the chain in Iceland is not proﬁtable, the owner of the stores, Jon Gardar Ogmundsson, is calling it quits. He will be reopening
under a different name with a focus on providing local products instead of the imported McDonald’s fare. Granted, Ogmundsson is a businessman looking to make a proﬁt, but the local produce option is motivating and current. It is interesting to note that the ﬁnancial crisis dented even a corporate superpower like McDonald’s. And it is interesting how it appears the failure
of the transnational chain in Iceland could bolster domestic production for the country. When it comes to local products, it is hard to tell if this will create a reaction in other burger chains, but only time will tell. For now, I support the fact that an American corporation is bowing out of a Nordic country. Hopefully, many locals are “lovin’ it” as much as I am.
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Watching the queen bee of women’s field hockey
Story by Nathan Lowther Photos by Lars Yunker
he girls huddle close together, shuddering with adrenaline against a cold Maritime wind. It’s overtime in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) women’s field hockey championship game, and there is a stoppage in play. The Vikes team, fifth seed in the five-team tournament, looks across the field at the mighty Thunderbirds from University of B.C. UVic’s head coach Lynne Beecroft watches nervously from the sidelines, rattling the fingers of her right hand against her teeth. She can do nothing else now — the girls just have to play. In the huddle, the seniors aren’t going over tactics. Nor are they talking bravely about beating the T-birds, something they haven’t done all season. In fact, no one says a word.
But the huddle isn’t gripped by a steely, disciplined silence either. Instead, the girls cross their sticks and, making like a pack of bumblebees, buzz. “Sure enough, with bumblebee stickers on their sticks, they came away as national champions,” says Beecroft, now in her 26th year, chuckling as she remembers the 1991 CIS title match in Halifax. Her squad managed to upset UBC in strokes, the field hockey version of the penalty shoot-out. “Interestingly enough, according to the experts, the bumblebee is not supposed to be able to fly because of the size of its wings compared to its body,” she says. “But I guess nobody told them that, so they just kept flying.” But unlike the bumblebee, who only flies because no one has told it that it can’t, Beecroft’s girls fly because she helps them believe they can. “Buzz,” as she’s known — and it has nothing to do with the bumblebee — runs a program that goes beyond athletics, and instead develops the young adults beyond the student athletes. “She gives us skills, gives us tactics and then teaches us how to care about each other and become a family,” says Ali Lee, who capped her superstar collegiate career with a CIS title in 2008. “It’s a really unique experience. I think you have to be really lucky to be a part of it.” The rest of the team gives sweet reviews as well. “Buzz is more about coaching people and [about] how you can relate pretty much anything to everything,” says 2008 and 2009 co-captain Katie Collison, who made this year’s All-Canada West Conference team. Buzz always talks about making something out of nothing, adds co-captain and two-time all-star Perri Espeseth.
Ducks, Eagles, Wizards: the yearly theme Perhaps the most unique element of the experience is the annual motivational “themes” Beecroft and her coaching staff comes up with. The bumblebees were one of these. One year, trains were the theme, signifying staying on track together. Another year, ducks were the theme until, going into
“You know that whistle is Buzz,” says Collison. “When you hear it, you better turn around and listen.” the playoffs, Beecroft realized ducks can be shot down. Destiny brought a stuffed eagle to a friend’s garbage can, and the ducks became eagles, united by one feather each. They flew high to the top of the nation. “Every year, it’s a big unveiling of what it is, so it’s kind of exciting. She finds a way to tie in the team goals, the tactics, the game plan — everything,” says Lee on Beecroft’s motivational devices. “She finds a better way of doing goal setting with imagery rather than just the basic ‘teamwork, hard work, 100 per cent effort’ kind of things.” Before she announces the theme to the team, Beecroft and assistant coach Krista Thompson give hints during training. Often, the teammates will comes across related token items too. But the themes and motivations go much deeper than the pre-season mystery. It’s more like a season-long theatrical play, with each weekend series versus their Canada West opponents a new act. One season saw a Wizard of Oz theme unfold, with subthemes being introduced before playing each conference team. “One week our theme would be heart,” explains Lee. “The next, would be wisdom for the scarecrow, then courage, and so on.” Collison says the group has been planning themes for so long now, that they know exactly how it’s all going to unfold in the end. “We find out our theme at the beginning of the season, and it’s a question mark as to how it is going to relate to anything,” says Collison. “But throughout the year, everything relates to everything else.”
Buzz-whistle and winning sport wisdom Of course, championships don’t come from concepts alone. At practice, Beecroft minimizes down time by breaking the girls into groups.
November 5, 2009
She works her way from group to group, motioning instructions with her hands and moving her feet to demonstrate proper angles. “Faster please,” she encourages, then crosses her arms, hockey stick crooked under her left arm, while she checks the day’s practice schedule held in her left hand. She gives two curt whistles, and the team reunites around her. The whistle isn’t overly loud, barely audible in the bleachers half a field away. But it’s loud enough for the players. “You know that whistle is Buzz,” says Collison. “When you hear it, you better turn around and listen.” For the next drill, the team works on transitioning from their zone to creating offense at the other end. Crisply, the ball makes its way down the field under the impressive gaze of the 11 national championship banners won with Beecroft at the helm. In her first 25 years as coach, UVic made the championship tournament 24 times, medaling in 23 of them. She holds the record for most games played and most wins in the CIS tournament. She has also coached numerous national team members, All-Canadians and Players of the Year. Despite all that, Buzz has never been the CIS Coach of the Year. “I think that people overlook her philosophy and her tactics and how she approaches the game. People aren’t able to appreciate her coaching because they are not the ones that are being coached by her. If you are in the program you know how amazing she is,” says Lee. “It is kind of a shame she hasn’t won [the award] though.” For Beecroft, though, the true reward comes from the impact she makes on those that go through her program. “I love getting emails from athletes five years down the road, or cards or whatever, that say ‘I finally get those lessons that you were talking about!’” says Beecroft. That feedback is miles ahead of another plaque for her parents to donate to a local sport team (as they eventually did with all the trophies Buzz and her brother won as kids). “I would trade a million times over no [individual] award for my team to be successful,” says Beecroft. “[But] even more than the championships, it’s the athlete or team that believes in itself that means the most to me.” Teams like last year’s, which won as a fourth seed to break Beecroft’s career-long six-year banner drought. Or athletes like Milena Gaiga.
November 5, 2009
A little buzz goes a long way Gaiga actually tried out for basketball, but didn’t make the team. Someone played against Gaiga in a small field hockey tournament in Courtenay and told her to try out for the Vikes. Gaiga missed the first three days of tryouts, came for one day, but didn’t come back the next. She didn’t think she was good enough. Beecroft wouldn’t buy it. “I said ‘Are you kidding me? Come out on Friday and let me decide,” Beecroft recalls. Gaiga made the team and played for Buzz for two seasons before going to coach St. Michaels University to a AA championship. Gaiga came back for two more seasons under Beecroft as a Masters student. After that, she represented Canada in the ’92 Olympics. “Those are people who allow themselves to get outside the box of what people expected of them,” says Beecroft. Gaiga’s story followed a similar path to Beecroft’s. Buzz was also a basketball-first kind of girl. In fact, her nickname came from her buzzing after rebounds playing one-on-one against a 6’8” opponent. Her high school basketball coach officially stamped the name, and it’s stuck ever since. Another similarity — it took the prodding of a coach for Beecroft to really discover her ability in the sport. Her high school coach, Peter Wilson, refused to sign her senior yearbook unless she agreed to try out for a provincial team. She did, with no expectations, just to appease him. She didn’t make one team — she made two: the Under-18 squad and the Under-23 squad. Buzz quickly realized that field hockey, not basketball, would be her Vikes varsity.
Playing global: coaching local From varsity, Buzz went international. She was selected to the national team in 1977, and wore the Maple Leaf for two world championships and the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. The team came second at the 1983 world championship, contested by 16 teams from both ideological blocs, but came into the Olympics with tired legs and didn’t manage to medal — despite the field shrinking to six. “That was very anti-climatic,” Beecroft says. She followed a teammate back to the CRD and joined the coaching staff at UVic. When the head coach retired, Beecroft moved in without an interview and now the program represents Beecroft’s vision of
Vikes hockey. “It’s just a game. Have fun, but work hard,” explains Espseth of Beecroft’s philosophy. “Everything we say, and everything that is good that we do, that is Vikes hockey.” The philosophy does put an emphasis on person building — but the need for that is obvious to some. “She taught me a lot about how to communicate and put emotions aside and really get down to the important stuff,” says Lee. “She taught me a lot about how to be a good role model for the girls.” Collison says Beecroft always reminds players to see the other side of things. “It’s always two sided — it’s never one person’s fault,” says Collison. “You have to see both sides of things to get a full understanding of what’s going on.”
A strong leader, a maternal touch For the young athletes, often away from home and trying to balance a hectic schedule, Buzz takes on a role beyond x’s and o’s. “Every set of girls that goes through this program are like her kids,” says Lee. “We always joke about the hot seat in her office, because we always come out crying when we sit in that chair. Sometimes happy cries, sometimes frustrated cries.” But the tears help the girls resolve issues, grow as people and, as the teammates say, are always worth it in the end. Lee believes Vikes hockey will continue to be successful, because the right kind of athlete — those that put the “we” before the “me” — want to be part of the program. Beecroft and her staff do not have to do a lot of recruiting, as the athletes come to her. And her system, combined with the right kind of player, has proven successful on and off the turf. It may not win coach of the year awards, but it does create family. “Last year, right before [the championship] game, we had a celebration dinner for her 25th year. There was a bunch of alumni there, and they kind of addressed [the coach of the year award],” Espeseth says. “They were like ‘Nobody really knows. It’s too bad you haven’t been recognized on paper, but the people that have played for you, and the people that love you, know what you have done. And, in some cases, that’s more important than having it on paper.’” And in the end, that’s what the buzz around Vikes hockey is all about.
•Star-crossed lovers ready to grace theatre in new Shakespeare play. •Sunday Buckets live up to growing hype at Evolution show. Editor Will Johnson
Phoenix students target washroom grafﬁti by WILL JOHNSON Everyone’s seen it. Whether it’s a knife etching of a naked woman, a racist slur scrawled in Sharpie or a homophobic manifesto, there’s no missing washroom graffiti. The anonymity of the bathroom stall provides people with a soapbox for their faceless hatred, and it’s evident everywhere — from restaurants to office buildings, from movie theatres to university campuses. A group of fourth-year UVic theatre students, led by teacher Renée Livernoche, has decided to do something about it. These students will be performing what they call an “interactive living art installment” in various locations around campus. And their mission is simple: get people thinking about the impact that graffiti “art” has on the community around them. Their first performance of Writing on the Wall will be on Thursday, Nov. 5, near the Petch Fountain. There will be four more performances over the course of November in various locations around campus. “We wanted to do something pro-active,” said Livernoche. She noted that this project evolved from an earlier theatre piece last semester. There was only one performance of the original show, which saw three actors clad in black trying to
erase hateful messages from large boards. Livernoche is optimistic that this new show will reach a larger audience, as the group plans to perform during high-traffic times around campus. “This is a totally different project,” she said, noting that her Applied Theatre class has been working on the show since midSeptember. There is a new and improved 360-degree set, featuring four toilet stalls. The 30-minute performance will involve audience participation with the five actors — Bronwyn Preece, Lisi Tessler, Marian McGraw, Lauren Jerke and Kim Sholinder. The buzz about the show has been building around campus, particularly due to their promotional Facebook page. During the show, actors will be dressed and masked head-to-toe in white, signifying the anonymity of the writers, readers and receivers of hate. Audience members will be offered markers and be encouraged to respond on the walls of the set — an activity in crowd participation which is sure to inspire people to do more than just turn and stare. Livernoche emphasized that the piece is a work in progress, strongly relying on improvisation. Over the course of the five shows, it will grow and change as the set transforms. “I’m excited to be able to get this message out there. It’s something I’ve always thought about,” said Tessler.
Performance schedule Thurday, Nov. 5, 10:30 a.m. — outside MacPherson Library, near Petch Fountain Friday, Nov. 13, 12:30 p.m. — outside MacPherson Library, near Petch Fountain Tuesday, Nov. 17, 12:30 p.m. — In front of the Student Union Building, facing Ring Road Wednesday, Nov. 18, 4 p.m. — In front of the Student Union Building, facing Ring road Friday, Nov. 20, 12:30 p.m. — University Centre, outside under the shelter
Marian McGraw, Lisi Tessler and Bronwyn Preece are three performers in Writing on the Wall, an interactive theatre piece aiming to raise awareness about the hateful nature of washroom graffiti.
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UVic tackles the Holy Land by NADINE SANDER-GREEN What: Romeo and Juliet Where: Phoenix Theatre, UVic When: 8 p.m., Nov. 5 to 21 How much: Students $15
Victoria Slam Team members (from left) Scott “Skawt” Jones, Dave Morris, Matt Davidson and Missy Peters will compete against 60 national spoken word performers at this year’s Canadian Festival of Spoken Word, Nov. 10 to 14.
Poetry scene slams into Vic by DANIELLE POPE What:Canadian Festival of Spoken Word Where: Victoria Event Centre, and more When: Nov. 10 to 14 How much: $7 to $15 Sharpen your eyes, clean those ears and get ready to have your senses overloaded. The sixth-annual Canadian Festival of Spoken Word (CFSW) is almost upon us and, with over 60 spokenword artists, poets and performers plunging into Victoria for the ﬁrst time ever next week, it promises to be one hell of a show. The festival, hosted this year by the Victoria Slam Team (formed through the popular Tongues of Fire poetry collective), is a celebration of the arts — on a local and national scale. “The goal of CFSW is to grow and foster the art of spoken word across Canada,” said festival organizer Steven J. Thompson. “But it’s become more than that. Spoken word is a democratic, blue-collar vehicle for social change — and everyone can do it.” Each year, different competing cities bid to host the festival (think Olympics on ink) and, lucky for local residents, Victoria won this year’s round. “We wanted to show the rest of the country what is going on here in Victoria, in our beautiful, collaborative art community. But we also wanted to help that community grow, by showing Victoria what the rest of the
world has to offer,” said Missie Peters, a member of the Victoria Slam Team for two years running now. With dozens of events packing a ﬁveday schedule, competitors and eager spectators alike can expect a full slate. Along with the performances of 12 teams from across Canada competing for the championship title, this year’s festival will include some bonus features, which Peters calls “value events,” added for a more rounded entertainment experience. Events will include open mics, Aboriginal, women’s and trans showcases, educational workshops (including tips on grant writing, performing solo shows and touring), late-night cabarets (from erotic to rock ‘n’ roll performances) and some surprises. There will even be a “Last Chance Slam” on Nov. 10, where any performer brave enough to try can compete for a spot on the Wild Card Slam Team. Best of all, the public will be invited to participate in everything — most especially, in judging the slammers. Thompson, who has been the artistic director for Tongues of Fire for the past four years, hopes those in attendance will feel inspired to grow their own writing and performance art. “A huge drive for this festival was to promote a scene that was geared for all levels,” said Thompson. “No matter where you’re at, there will be people you can aspire to. It’s a very tight-knit
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November 5, 2009
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community, with welcoming arms and a lot of encouragement to offer. You won’t see any diva-ism here.” Those lucky enough to attend this year’s CFSW will also be enchanted with feature performances by veteran spoken-word artists Sherri D. Wilson, Regi Cabico, Andrea Thompson and C. R. Avery. But the festival won’t just be about poetry. Be prepared to see erotic art shows, local DJ dance sets and even poetry yoga. And while Thompson and Peters say they would have loved more time to work on the festival (which has been in progress for months now) they admit it would be hard to pack anything more into the schedule. Now, Peters just has to focus on competing. “Being part of a slam team really challenges you artistically … [especially] because you compete as an individual to get on a team, then have to collaborate on pieces as a group,” Peters said. “But the CFSW is like a shot in the arm. I came home last year and wrote three new poems.” Still, the festival comes down to having a good time for one and all. “As we say in slam, ‘the points are not the point; the point is the poetry,’” Thompson said. All events will be held in the Victoria Events Centre, with the slam ﬁnals being held at the Alix Goolden Hall. To ﬁnd out more about the festival, and for a full schedule, check out cfsw09.
UVic’s Phoenix Theatre is presenting Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet — with a twist. The tragic love story, which opens this Thursday, has gone through a change of scenery. Director Brian Richmond has decided to place the play in the Holy Land, the disputed region of the Middle East, instead of in Shakespeare’s original Italian setting. Through the lens of the many cultures that inhabit the region, Richmond translates what Shakespeare wrote as a struggle between Italian families into a feud between Muslim and Jewish households. “Italy was a metaphor for a country that had a great deal of internal strife. When I was approaching this project, I was thinking, what is the area of the world that we think of as having an ongoing conflict?” said Richmond. “Of course that answer is the Middle East or, in this production, the Holy Land. We’re setting the play in the context of our perception of an area of violent and apparently irresolvable conflicts.” Kerem Çetinel, who was born and raised in Turkey, is a department sessional instructor and brings his experience to the set design. With a stage floor of desert sand and backdrop of a war-torn wall, the scenery fits the theme of struggle in this divided territory. The production also includes flying, fog, traps and an elevated stage. There are 28 people in the cast and almost as many working in the stage crew. “This is the biggest department-wide effort on a production in several years,” said Richmond.
One of the biggest challenges for the actors was working with Shakespeare’s language. Richmond said that understanding what is being said is one thing, but that being able to speak verse and then make it comfortable is a second big challenge. UVic acting students Samantha Richard and Melanie Leon will both play the part of Juliet. Leon, the understudy, will perform for five nights, while Richard plays Juliet the other 12. “I’ve wanted to play Juliet since I was about six years old,” said Richard. “She’s young, she’s feisty, she’s strong, she’s brave.” Leon admits she is terriﬁed, and Richard said that playing Juliet is the hardest thing she’s ever done in her life. “It’s so hard to get your vowels, to get your consonants, to hit every period, every question mark,” said Richard. “ But I’m really excited and I want to take each day as it comes. It’s not very often you get to be a Juliet.” Romeo and Juliet is a play that has somehow transcended through centuries of theatrics. Brian Richmond chose Shakespeare’s most famous play because it speaks to timeless universal themes. “I think there are two things in life that are neither rational, nor ultimately explainable,” said Richmond. “The ﬁrst is love. When we fall in love, it seems to me that our whole systems change inside of ourselves and we never know why. The second thing is death. We’ve always had to encounter the concepts of love and death in society and, in simple terms, that’s what Romeo and Juliet is all about.” Be sure to catch the free pre-show lecture on Friday, Nov. 6, at 7 p.m., where Janelle Jenstad from UVic’s Department of English will give her talk, “Shakespeare’s Experiment in Comi-Tragedy.”
101.9 FM c f u v. u v i c . c a CFUV is the University of Victoria’s Campus/ Community Radio Station. To find out more information about CFUV, including our programming schedule, volunteer information and complete charts, please visit our website at www.cfuv.uvic.ca. Hear the weekly top ten on Charts and Graphs every Tuesday at 3:00PM on CFUV 101.9FM.
Sunday Buckets stoked on success The Zone’s October Band of the Month builds momentum with a new album and a rocking show on Halloween weekend by DAVE BELL What do Elvis Presley, a palm tree, Mario, the bearded lady and a couple of pirates all have in common? They came to see Sunday Buckets rock out at Evolution Night Club on Oct. 29. It was two nights before Halloween and Evolution Nightclub was teeming with ghouls of all shapes and sizes. There was an undeniable energy in the room as the Sunday Buckets took the stage, each member clad in matching red toques and light blue t-shirts to represent The Life Aquatic’s “Team Zissou.” “This whole show goes to the illustrious jaguar shark,” screamed a deadpan Kale Penny, before falling into a lively rendition of “Unsteady.” The entire crowd danced in approval. Only four years ago, the Sunday Buckets (lead singer Penny, plus guitarists Eric Frazer and Jarrett Penny, bassist Chris Taylor, keyboardist Nick McRae and drummer Spencer Moyes) were just learning how to play their instruments. Today, the band members find themselves with a single on the radio, a strong debut album (In Case You Hear This) and sold-out shows across the board. This year, they were named the Zone’s Band of the Month. Is this something the band could have foreseen? “If someone told me that I’d have a song on the radio in four years, I’d have told them to go fuck themselves,” said Jarrett before the show. The rest of the band laughed, but nodded in agreement.
Still, the Sunday Buckets have worked hard for their recent rise to local fame. It paid off in 2007, when the band entered a local Battle of the Bands contest and won. From there, they kept a steady flow of gigs, including a set at the now defunct Steamer’s Pub. Their future producer, Matthew James, was in the crowd, and invited the band to record an album in his studio. The process is one that the band looks upon fondly. “[James] taught us how to play together rather than against each other,” said McRae. “And in a six piece, you really can play against each other.” If this ever was a problem for Sunday Buckets, it’s hardly evident. Their hour-long set was crisp and vibrant, each member playing off each other as well as the next. During “Aftermathematics,” their leading single, Penny encouraged the crowd to sing along, as they knew the words just as well. Their encore started with “She’s Waiting,” an Eric Clapton cover song and the tightest performance of their set. The entire dance floor was alive with energy (vampires and werewolves alike) giving new meaning to what defines a true monster mash. Having recently scored the coveted title of Zone Band of the Month, Sunday Buckets is eager and excited to keep the momentum going with a new album, and to push their success to new boundaries.
Sunday Buckets, the Zone’s October Band of the Month, riled up the crowds at Evolution on Oct. 29.
“This first album was more of a learning experience,” said McRae, “and now that we know — well we think we know what’s going on — our writing has improved ten-fold. We’re really stoked on the songs we already have toward
this next album, and we’re really excited to see the songs that we’re going to write. I think we’re all going to be super proud of this next album.” The rest of the band agrees, each of them chiming in with a
chorus of “definitely” and “hell yea.” Sunday Buckets seem poised to reap the rewards of their work. “It’s going to take an army to hold us back from trying to promote the shit out of it,” McRae said.
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