SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022 • VOLUME 75 • ISSUE 5 @THEMARTLET
w MARTLET.CA t @THEMARTLET
VOICES OF THE HEALTH CARE CRISIS p.6
TO MASK OR NOT TO MASK (p. 3)
RIFFLANDIA REVIEW (p. 8)
NEW HOBBIES TO TRY (p. 9)
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SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022
To mask or not to mask: That is the question for UVic students, staff, and faculty this year As school year begins with no mask mandates by UVic, wearing masks on the campus becomes mixed choice KARLEY SIDER SENIOR STAFF WRITER As students, faculty, and staff return for the school year with no mask mandate in place, there seems to be a mix of people at UVic choosing to either consistently wear masks in indoor spaces, those who wear masks sporadically, and those who overall refrain. “We remain committed to maintaining a safe and healthy environment for all students, faculty and staff, and will be offering in-person learning for most courses,” said UVic, in a statement about health and safety for this fall. “We encourage you to wear a mask in indoor public spaces, particularly if you are close to others or feel more comfortable doing so.” While the university is encouraging the use of masks in indoor spaces, it is not required. This follows other B.C. universities, such as the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University, who recommend, but do not enforce, masking in classes. Some UVic students are taking this into their own hands and are promoting more masking on campus. #MaskUpUVic is a “student-led, collaborative campaign helping keep the UVic community safe with free masks and tests.” It is a campaign largely organized by Matsuko Friedland, a UVic student passionate about encouraging masking on campus.
“[The campaign] is to address the mask mandate being lifted and then [how] masking rates are really low, we’re estimating maybe 20 per cent at the highest at UVic,” said Friedland. “So maybe we can give people masks and then the mask rate will go up and make it really easy for [students].” Partnering with the Canadian Red Cross and other campus organizations like the University of Victoria Students’ Society, Society for Students with a Disability, Student of Colour Collective, UVic Engineering Students’ Society, and Public Health and Social Policy Student Association, the campaign gives out free masks and testing kits to anyone who wants them. “[Masking] is still a recommendation and COVID is still around, and it’s a lot more infectious too,” said Friedland. “We don’t know who’s in our classes, there could be immune-compromised people there [or] maybe their family are. I think it’s the compassionate thing to do is wear a mask when you’re sharing a space with people you don’t know, and you don’t know what their life situation is or what their comfort level is.” To help reduce the spread of COVID19 variants, the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) recommends getting vaccinated, washing your hands, staying home if sick, visiting others in small groups, wearing masks indoors, and increasing ventilation.
Photo by Sie Douglas-Fish.
“New variants spread the same way as the original COVID-19, although some of the newer variants, such as Omicron, transmit much easier between people,” reads the BCCDC website. #MaskUpUvic is on Instagram, Discord, and they have an email list for people to join for any important updates about masking. Matsuko mentions that masks and test kits can continue to be picked up for free at the UVSS Office at the Student Union Building.
Some students have mixed feelings on the matter. “At the beginning of the pandemic, I was a very strong advocate for masking, I thought it was super important. I still think it’s really important, but it kind of depends on numbers,” said K, a student at UVic, in an interview. “I think a return to normalcy at this point is also important.” Having moved from a small town in Alberta to Victoria, she described how
masking was a virtually non-existent practice due to the small size of the community. “When I came to campus at first, I wasn’t masking, and not that many other people were, and I thought that was fine,” she said. However, she recounted that after catching a cold during the first week of classes and hearing about other people getting sick on campus, she realized masking is an easy thing she can do to prevent illness. “Even if it’s not COVID, it can mess up a lot of things school-related,” she said. “Going forward, I do think I will be masking, especially as cases will inevitably be rising throughout the semester.” Other universities and colleges around Canada are taking varied approaches to COVID-19 as students return to campus. For example, the University of Western Ontario is enforcing both masks and vaccines, while other Ontario universities like Wilfrid Laurier are just enforcing masks. On their website, UVic states that they continue “to adhere to all public health orders and implement all of the health and safety measures required by the Provincial Health Officer, ” and asks those at UVic to continue following public health guidance and to stay home if sick. A source’s information in this article was updated Oct. 7, 2022.
Meet your UVic Advocacy Groups
Take a look at what these advocacy groups have to offer KRISTEN DE JAGER VOLUNTEER STAFF WRITER
During the second week of the fall semester the five UVic advocacy groups came together for the first Advo Week. The week allowed the advocacy groups to show UVic students what they have to offer. The main purpose of Advo Week as Cristina Venturin, the outreach coordinator of the Gender Empowerment Centre (GEM) and the organiser of Advo Week, said was, “to try to teach the student body more about the spaces that we have, the work that we do, and how we're trying to shift campus culture.” T h e w e e k f e a t u re d d i ff e re n t engaging events for the UVic student body. It kicked off with an interview with the outreach coordinators on the campus radio station — CFUV — and had sex toy bingo on the Tuesday, as well as a live music event held at Felicita’s on the Friday. The groups also tabled at the clubs and course union fair both Wednesday and Thursday, all with the goal to reach and engage with more students. But who are these groups that are advocating for the student body?
NATIVE STUDENTS UNION (NSU) The main purpose of the NSU, as stated on their website is to “form community, support each other, advocate for Indigenous rights and wellbeing, and just exist together
at the institution.” NSU has two physical spaces for Indigenous students. One is located in the First People’s House and the other is located in the Student Union Building (SUB). The space comes equipped with a lounge, kitchenette, computers, a bookshelf, and snacks to help students feel comfortable in the environment. Students are encouraged to sign up on the NSU website to gain access to the space. “We're really trying to bring culture into students' lives,” said Peter Underwood, coordinator for NSU. Upcoming events include tattoo workshops, plant walks, and possibly a drum making workshop.
GENDER EMPOWERMENT CENTRE (GEM) GEM is a collective run to represent, encourage, and organise support for the needs of non-binary, trans, self-identified women, and gender non-conforming members of the community. As Venturin states, “the pillars of G E M a re a n t i - o p p re s s i o n , s e x p o s i t i v i t y, a n d i n t e r s e c t i o n a l feminism.” GEM is located in the SUB, where students are welcome to a couch, heated blankets and pads, as well as safe sex and mentrual cycle supplies. The room also has an intersectional feminist library for students to pick a book from if interested. GEM also offers gender diversity workshops that deals with conversations about sex and gender. In addition to this, they will
be hosting their second annual SEXPO in February to encourage sex positivity in the community.
STUDENTS OF COLOUR COLLECTIVE (SOCC) SOCC is a collective that represents self-identified BIPOC students at UVic. Located in the SUB, the SOCC space is open to the SOCC community. A designated study space hosts two couches, computers, a printing service as well as a library for students to take out books as they please. “That's an open space for any of (the SOCC community) to come to” said Maya Mersereau-Liem, coordinator for the SOCC. “Then, next door is my office. So people can come when they need support, advocacy, you know, just anything, really.” SOCC regularly hosts potlucks and film screenings to bring the community together. The group has recently reintroduced their artist-in-residence program, where an artist from the community works with SOCC to create artwork on topics of antiracism, decolonization, and BIPOC joy. Mersereau-Liem also teased that SOCC may be releasing a recipe book with recipes that have been passed down in families of members of the collective. This project intends to help foster a community that links stories, culture, and food together.
UVIC PRIDE UVic Pride represents LGBT2SIA+ students in the UVic community. The space in the SUB offers a lounge, library, and a gender-neutral bathroom. UVic Pride offers free chest binders and large sized feminine shoes for students to take as needed. UVic Pride also has their own Minecraft server for students to join. Additionally, the group will soon be o ff e r i n g c o m m u n i t y c i rc l e s t o encourage discussions on identity, offered to students of subcommunities of UVic Pride.
SOCIETY FOR STUDENTS WITH A DISABILITY (SSD) The SSD is a group that works to help support students with selfidentified disabilities in their student lives. SSD has a physical space in the SUB where students can talk to the Office Coordinator, Adrean Meuser, if they need any support. The space has adaptive learning technology available if students would like to access them. They also have a discord server that students may join to further connect with their community. Currently, the SSD has an ongoing campaign, #Access4All, which is continuously working to remove barriers for students returning to campus, in advocating for hybrid learning opportunities. SSD also hosts events such as workshops to discuss accessibility, nutrition, gender, and sexuality with disabilities. In addition to this, SSD
Logo provided by Society for Students with a Disability (SSD).
h o s t s c a m p u s s t ro l l s t o b u i l d community presence on UVic’s campus. While the NSU, GEM, SOCC, UVic Pride, and SSD help to advocate for different groups of people, their goals all include brightening the UVic community for students who may have felt left behind. Although Advo Week might’ve been some UVic students’ first time seeing these advocacy groups on campus, it definitely won't be the last.
SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022 //
EDITORIALyou should know for the upcoming local elections What
Advance voting for Victoria and Saanich will be available on campus SAJJAN SARAI SENIOR STAFF WRITER
You've probably already seen the signs posted up around town. With voting day for the 2022 B.C. General Local Elections slated for Oct. 15, candidates are now in full campaigning mode. "You might not think that cities have that much of a say in your everyday lives, but they actually do,” said Emma-Jane Burian, a political science and environmental studies student and one of the organizers of the Get Out The Vote campaign at UVic. The campaign's goal is to increase student voter turnout. In these upcoming elections, voters will decide a new mayor, councillors, and a varying number of school trustees in their municipalities. Mayors and councillors will hold their positions for the next four years. Students at UVic will mainly be affected by the election outcomes in Oak Bay, Saanich, and Victoria, as these regions are closest to UVic. These elections are important for UVic
community members, so it is crucial to understand when and where to vote, as well as where to find information about who is running for which municipalities. Oak Bay is the smallest of these three districts, and thus only offers two locations for voting on Oct. 15. They have two days of advance voting, both of which will be at the Oak Bay Municipal Hall. Saanich, the largest of the municipalities, offers 17 locations on the general election day, and three days of advance voting, each with two different locations. Finally, Victoria has 13 voting locations the day of, and four opportunities to vote before that day. All districts are also promoting mail-in ballots as well. To vote students must be at least 18 years old, be a Canadian citizen, have lived in B.C. for at least six months, and live in the district they are voting in. While Saanich does a good job on their website to show voters the confines of their municipality, it could be unclear what the borders of the Oak Bay and Victoria districts are, especially for young
students who may be unfamiliar with the area. Get Out The Vote can help with understanding this. “We’re going to hand out flyers about how students can vote and really just educate them about the time and place [they can vote at],” said Burian. Both Burian and Co-Coordinator Alyssa Jackson are excited about the fact that advance voting will take place on-campus this year. The districts of Saanich and Victoria will have voting locations on campus in the Student Union Building on Oct. 11 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is great for accessibility and for busy students, as Burian says time is often a deterrent that limits student voting. However, Jackson noted the unfortunate timing of the on-campus voting as Thanksgiving is the day before, and some students may choose to extend their time with families. Regardless of that, the Get Out The Vote campaign will look to reach as many students as possible and encourage them to vote. “On the fourth and fifth
Photo by Dan Dennis via Unsplash.
there’s candidates tabling at the SUB and we’ll be there,” said Jackson. This will be a great opportunity for students to get to know who is on the ballot. Both Burian and Jackson also stress the importance of voting in municipal elections. “Change happens from the bottom up, which means we need to vote in municipal elections because it'll expand further and further into the governments of Canada,” said Jackson. If students want to request a mail-in ballot, find more information on voting
locations, and view candidate profiles, they should head to their respective municipalities' website where they will find everything they need to know. The Martlet will also be independently mediating a candidate forum hosted by the UVSS. Oak Bay candidates will be on campus on Oct. 5, Saanich candidates on Oct. 6, and Victoria candidates on Oct. 7. Each forum will be at Vertigo in the SUB from 5–7 p.m., with a meetand-greet after the forum concludes.
Dave is a former lawyer, economist, small business owner, community volunteer Priority Issues: housing, climate crisis, community safety for all, good governance
Find out more: davethompsonvictoria.ca | Financial Agent: Galen Wilson, email@example.com https://davethompsonvictoria.ca/
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4 // SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022
Should we have had a day off to mourn the Queen?
KRISTEN DE JAGER VOLUNTEER STAFF WRITER On Sept. 19, UVic students and faculty, among those at other post-secondary institutions across B.C., got the day off school to properly mourn Queen Elizabeth II of England. While this day off might have represented a nice gesture to the Royal Family in England, it feels like a slap in the face for UVic students. The first inconvenience presented to UVic students by taking the day off to mourn the Queen is how this will impact exam schedules in the future. As of now, classes will continue until Dec. 6, instead of Dec. 5, and the exam period will run from Dec. 8–21. This shift in schedule means that students will now have to continue studying all the way up to Dec. 21 before participating in any holiday activities. While the exam schedule likely feels like a big deal in many students' eyes, what message is UVic sending to members of marginalized communities with this day off? It is eerie that the day that we got off to mourn the Queen’s death was just 11 days before National Truth and Reconciliation Day, on Sept. 30. UVic has claimed that one of their goals for the future is to foster respect and reconciliation, one of the main points being to “implement transformative programs to provide a welcoming, inclusive campus environment for all, and include the entire university community in Indigenous-engaged learning to promote mutual understanding and respect.” Despite this, we are meant to mourn a Queen who has never apologized for the colonization of Canada, and the role that the Anglican Church has played in residential schools. In fact, the last residential school only closed in 1997, which was well into the Queen's reign.
You can argue that we are a constitutional monarchy, which means that the Queen no longer rules over Canada. However, if she held no power over Canada and their relations, why do we get a whole day to mourn her? There is also the fact that the treaties that Indigenous peoples signed were between Indigenous leaders and the Crown, not the Canadian government. So it hits a little harder that the Crown has yet to apologize for any role played in the atrocities committed against Indigenous groups in Canada. Additionally, Queen Elizabeth II, and the rest of the Royal Family have never apologized for the monarchy’s role in the slave trade. When Prince William addressed the monarchy’s role in slavery, he mentioned it with “profound sorrow,” however, an actual public apology and moves for reparations have yet to be made, which speaks volumes to how the Crown represents adherence to white privilege. So, while the majority of UVic students probably did not use their day off to watch the funeral for the Queen, the message from the provincial government and UVic is that we were meant to. In the process, UVic’s goal to become a place of reconciliation and welcoming for students who have been hurt by a corrupt system becomes unclear. This is heavily due to their support and mourning of a person that represents oppression in marginalized communities today. But hey, at least her corgis were cute, right?
SAJJAN SARAI SENIOR STAFF WRITER The National Day of Mourning on Sept. 19 was an occasion that Canadians should understand, and perhaps even support. The day off was meant to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s accomplishments and recognize her significance to Canada. Her accomplishments pre-date her time as Queen, as she provided moral support and encouragement to youth via radio during World War II. She even joined the war effort at home, enlisting with the women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service. Moreover, she helped champion the Commonwealth movement, which saw member countries grow from 8 to 56, with the last four countries that joined having no historical link to the British Empire. Finally, Queen Elizabeth II was the longest serving British monarch, and second longest ever in the world. The era that she represents went through considerable change and she adapted the monarchy to it. Queen Elizabeth II was the first British monarch to allow her coronation to be broadcast on television transnationally, and she was the first royal to ever send an email. She continually accepted modern technology during her reign. As for her significance with Canada specifically, she served as our head of state for over 60 years, and she approved The Constitution Act of 1982, which gave us the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. She also proclaimed our current flag and sponsored 36 Canadian charities. This is all to say that Canadians have a reason to accept this National Day of Mourning. However, a well-founded argument against this day is that Queen Elizabeth II did not do enough to address the issue of residential schools in Canada. Although Queen
Victoria sat on the throne when residential schools began, Queen Elizabeth II served the longest while they were active. Either way, there is a responsibility for the British monarchy to address this horrific issue, and many would say that the Queen failed to do so during her tenure. Accompanying this, the resentment and pain that the British Empire created as a colonial power gives anyone who was affected a reason to question why we should honour such a figure by shutting down various parts of the country for the day. But I still believe this day should have been taken to reflect on what the Queen meant to you. Whether it was good or bad, the Queen’s significance is undeniable. If you needed this day to mourn those who have suffered at the hands of the British monarchy, or to reflect on what you expect of the monarchy moving forward, then I would have agreed with your position. The Canadian government included three Indigenous representatives in their delegation to attend the Queen’s funeral. These representatives expressed their condolences and each has their own take on what the passing of the Queen meant to them. The Assembly of First Nations has had several leaders speak on what the day of the funeral means to them, including a sense of “moving from being survivors to thrivers” and “the dawn of a new era based on Truth and Reconciliation.” Thus, while it may seem easy for us to disregard this moment and disapprove of the day of mourning, it is important to understand how historically significant such an event is, and to have taken this day to reflect on what the Queen has done in her lifetime, as well as reflect on what the occasion may mean to all Canadians.
Photo by WikiImages via Pixabay.
We need free university textbooks
Exploitation of university students needs to end RAHEEM UZ ZAMAN VOLUNTEER STAFF WRITER
Well, it’s that time of year again: university has started and we are forced into buying textbooks by some of our instructors. With inflation this year at the highest it’s been in decades, the cost of goods and services, which includes textbooks, has ballooned to the point where it’s almost unaffordable to purchase university textbooks. Hence, it is imperative that all university textbooks become free to tackle inflation. One approach universities can take to make textbooks free is fund the cost of textbooks through donors or have the provincial or federal government pay for it. However, as capitalism is embedded in Canadian society, politics, and economy, this a p p ro a c h m a y n e v e r c o m e t o fruition. A second option to offset the financial burden associated with textbooks is to take advantage of open educational resources. For instance, the UVic library offers free online e-textbooks for multiple courses. The downside of this resource is that options are limited as not every course has access to a free e-textbook In 2012, BCcampus, an organization primarily funded by the Ministry of Advanced Education and
Skills Training, launched a free e-textbook website. Options on this open educational resource are abundant, especially for first and second-year courses, with 382 textbooks available. However, this organization is only allowed to publish books that are public domain or those that have an open-copyright license, meaning the author or publisher has allowed it. Unfortunately, if the author or publisher does not allow opencopyright, then it impedes the progress of universalizing free textbooks a nd f a ils t o p u t a n effective dent in inflation. I have crossed paths with the BCcampus open educational resource before. About two years ago, I was studying at Columbia College — a community college located in Vancouver. I took multiple second-year psychology, history, and political science courses over there, and most of the books in those courses were free as my conscientious instructors took advantage of the BCcampus open educational resource. I have saved over $500 due to my instructors at Columbia College embracing free educational resources; UVic instructors, if they have the option, should do the same. The B.C. government’s policy initiatives towards free textbooks have been far from inactive. In 2019, the Ministry of Advanced Education
and Skills Training announced funding of $3.26 million towards open educational resources. As explained above, the emphasis on free textbooks by the B.C. government has helped me out personally, but universalizing free textbooks is almost impossible due to the current economic system that we live in — one that stresses exploiting students with inflated textbook prices to profit as much as possible. In 2017, Maclean’s put together a list of the most expensive universities in Canada in terms of the cost of textbooks for the academic year. Out of a list of 51 universities in Canada, UVic is the 26th most expensive university for books. To my surprise, books on average cost more at UVic ($780.94) than at UBC ($749.19) and UofT ($707.22) in 2017. This is an embarrassing statistic for UVic. The astronomical prices of university textbooks make the already stressful lives of university students that much more stressful. As a result of seemingly unaffordable textbook prices, university students may face the predicament of cutting their food budget so that they can buy textbooks and continue their university education. Other university students may have to resort to student loans to pay for textbooks. Giving out
Photo by Raheem Uz Zaman.
student loans to eligible candidates just shows the reification of capitalism by provincial and federal government. Free university textbooks or the proliferation of university textbooks in open education resources will help offset some of the pressures faced by university students. However, the problem with this approach is that the dominant capitalist philosophy that governs our society and politics undermines the free textbook movement. In my opinion, inflated university textbook prices have impacted international students at UVic the most. International students already pay more in tuition fees, and they get billed a B.C. Medical Services Plan health fee of $75 every single
month. Now, the rise in textbook prices has put even more financial pressure on their shoulders. As an international student myself, I can confirm this stressful situation! Education is crucial for the intellectual and moral development of students, especially young students who have directly come to university after high school. Inflated textbooks and the exploitative nature of capitalism threaten this development. Although the provincial and federal governments have made progress in addressing this issue, more needs to be done in order for true equity.
SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022 //
Photo by Ashlee Levy.
UVic students scared, struggling to find reliable health care amid family doctor shortage “I shouldn’t have to worry about not being able to recover from an infection."
ASHLEE LEVY CONTRIBUTING WRITER Last fall, Sarah, a UVic student, went swimming at McKinnon pool. To keep pace with a friend, she borrowed a pair of too-small flippers from the facility. When she put them on, she didn’t notice the small cuts on each of her big toes. After walking back to her dorm room wearing slides, Sarah used Polysporin to clean the cuts, however, just a day later, she knew they were infected. Sarah would spend the next days struggling to walk to her classes and making phone calls to clinics, desperate to get a prescription for antibiotics. After nearly a week Sarah decided she would have to go to an emergency room (ER) to finally see a doctor about the infection she had tried to prevent. “I shouldn’t have to worry about not being able to recover from an infection,” said Sarah, whose name
was changed upon request due to the personal nature of this story. With family practices closing in Greater Victoria and across the province, many people have found themselves in the same position as Sarah. According to Statistics Canada, 17 per cent of British Columbians were without regular health care providers in 2021. In Greater Victoria this number is even higher. Just over 24 per cent of people in Greater Victoria were unattached to a regular physician in 2017. Those with and without family doctors also face high clinic wait times and ER closures, making it increasingly difficult for people, including students, to access the health care they need. Like many students, Sarah left her family doctor behind when she moved to Victoria. In an interview with the Martlet, Sarah called the transition “a complete 180.” “I always have the worry of ‘what if I can't get an antibiotic?’” she said.
The importance of primary care is something Hannah, another UVic student who works as a medical office assistant at a family practice, is all too familiar with. Hannah's name has also been changed upon request to protect her future employment. “We get 10 to 20 calls a day asking if we're taking on [new] patients,” Hannah told the Martlet. According to her, university students are one group that often falls through the cracks when it comes to primary and preventative care. “Young people are one of the main demographics that [get] underprioritized because we are typically healthy,” said Hannah. According to Hannah, not having a primary care physician makes accessing the health care system more difficult for students, many of whom are young and inexperienced with things like booking appointments and dealing with health insurance.
“We're not given a guide on how to navigate the health care system,” said Hannah, who experienced these challenges herself when her family doctor retired at the beginning of the pandemic. “It's scary to have stuff going on and not be able to rely on somebody.” Hannah also noted that without a family doctor, patients are expected to explain their medical history each time they seek care and that it poses a problem with medical records. Not only can obtaining your medical records without a primary care physician be difficult, but it can involve paying some administrative fees. According to Hannah, she has also experienced issues refilling medication as a result. “Every single time I tried to get medication for [ADHD], which I need to help me function, they just act as if you're drug seeking, and they ask to see every single document that proves it,” Hannah said. “It’s really frustrating.”
In August, the B.C. Ministry of Health announced an expansion of the province’s primary care strategy. In partnership with Doctors of BC, $118 million will be available to family doctors and primary care clinics. More than 70 per cent of family doctors in the province are expected to receive funding, which will help cover operational costs. Later this fall, a new compensation model will also be announced as part of the newly expanded strategy. While UVic has a Student Wellness Centre, which is open to current students for ongoing care and rapid access appointments, Hannah was unaware of the service until recently and has since struggled to get appointments. “They have great doctors, and they do their best, but it’s slow to get in there unless you've got an urgent issue,” Hannah said. “They’re swamped.”
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The Student Wellness Centre was the first place Sarah attempted to seek care when she realized her toes were infected. She said that each time she called for a same-day appointment, the clinic was completely booked. After being turned away over the phone, Sarah decided to go to the clinic in person. When she arrived, the appointments were once again filled up. Sarah felt desperate to make someone understand the severity of the infection, asking a passing nurse to have a look, however, she says she was still turned away. “[It’s] very disappointing considering students are paying a good portion for that centre to be functioning,” Sarah said. “Shouldn't we [have] some urgent walk-in appointments for students that really need a script really quickly?” While some students report having had good, timely experiences getting into the Wellness Centre, Luca hasn’t been as lucky. Luca requested his last name be omitted due to the personal nature of this story. “Multiple times, I've called them at 8:30, and they just don't answer,” he said. “The one time that I did get a same-day appointment, I camped outside the building 30 minutes before they opened.” A representative from the university wrote in an email to the Martlet that they advise students to call or visit the centre as early as possible for urgent appointments. “Demand for same-day appointments typically exceeds supply,” reads the email. In addition to same-day appointments, the Wellness Centre also offers scheduled appointments for less urgent issues. However, some students say it’s just as difficult to get in to see a doctor this way as it is for an emergency. According to Luca, the wait times he's experienced is sometimes over a month. “It's frustrating because I'm only able to book an appointment every five weeks,” Luca said. “If there's a problem with one of the medications, unless it's really an emergency, I'm not really able to bring that to my doctor's attention.” For Luca, this also poses an issue when he needs to refill his prescriptions. As a result of wait times, he has run out of his medication on multiple occasions and was forced to rely on emergency refills from pharmacists. “The team works as hard as they can to provide timely support to students in need,” read the email from UVic. “Unfortunately, with the current healthcare crisis affecting people nation-wide, demand for
services at the centre remains high. If you are a student from BC and have a positive relationship with your family doctor, we encourage you to maintain that relationship [and] to book ahead f or routine a ppoi n t me n t s lik e prescription renewals.” The university also encourages students to try other walk-in clinics in the area. However, this is an option that all three students have essentially written off. After she was unable to get an appointment at the UVic Wellness Centre, Sarah tried multiple clinics with no luck getting an appointment. Many of the clinics she has tried during her time in Victoria no longer accept walk-ins. She says many also operate similarly to the Student Wellness Centre, with appointments filling up just after they open each day. Hannah echoed this frustration with the lack of options for those without family doctors. “All those family doctors closing their offices means that people are forced to go to urgent care [clinics],” she said. “They open around 9:00. If you call them at 9:07, they are filled for the day.” According to the Medimap Walk-in Clinic Wait Time Index, Victoria had the highest wait times in the country in 2021. Patients waited an average of 161 minutes at clinics in Victoria, 136 minutes longer than the national average. The index also revealed that B.C. has the highest average wait time of any province. With no family doctor and no luck getting into a walk-in clinic, many people like Sarah are left with no choice but to make a trip to the ER. “After a certain point, I throw my hands up in the air and say ‘I have to go to the ER because I'm not going to get healthcare any other way,’” Sarah said. At midnight on a school night, Sarah headed to the ER where she waited between five and six hours for a doctor to look at her toes. The first doctor to examine her told her that the discolouration was just bruising. However, after she asked for another opinion, it only took the second doctor a moment to recognize the signs of a Staph infection and rush to get antibiotics. Sarah recalls the next day, she could see the infection had spread all the way up her ankles to her mid-calves. If the infection had gone on any longer, Sarah believes she would have risked losing her toes. While Sarah’s infection was an emergency by the time she went to the ER, according to Hannah, many people are forced to go for less urgent issues.
“I know multiple patients that have gone to the ER for routine prescription refills because they just can't get in for an appointment,” said Hannah. “I know people that have gone to get a mole checked out while they're waiting for a dermatology [appointment] because that's what the wait lists are like.” However, with some staffing shortages and ER closures, getting care at a hospital is also no longer as easy as it once was. Island Health has posted numerous service interruption notices to their website and Twitter account in recent months, affecting various emergency departments in the region. Closures included Port McNeill, Port Hardy, and Cormorant Island. Each notice cites “limited staffing availability” as the reason for the temporary closures. “Island Health acknowledges this is not an ideal situation for the community and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience experienced by this temporary service interruption,” they read. “Being able to go out and get a script for something minor has just turned into a huge issue,” said Sarah. Worries about wait times and u n c e r t a i n t y a ro u n d o b t a i n i n g healthcare have caused some of her friends to keep leftover antibiotics on hand, afraid they won’t be able to get a prescription fast enough. Luca shares these concerns about whether he could find care if he were injured or sick. “It feels scary knowing that we don't have enough doctors,” he said. “Where I'm from, I'm used to being able to give my family doctor a phone call and have him respond within 12 hours, so not having that safety net is scary.” Sarah has also taken her health into her own hands since recovering from her infection. She now keeps iodine and antibiotics on hand in case she gets another infection. She considers herself lucky to have people in her family who work in pharmaceuticals because her knowledge of infections helped her recognize the signs of serious infection and care for the wounds until she got help. “I came forward with my story because I figured it was pretty damn extreme, and I should probably say something so this doesn't happen to somebody else,” Sarah said. “If it wasn't for me going to the ER, it would have gotten worse, and it would not have ended well.”
If it wasn't for me going to the ER, it would have gotten worse, and it would not have ended well.
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Highlights and let-downs from the September music festival DAY FOUR
Lorde, photo by Andy Wang.
GUY ROSENFELD CONTRIBUTING WRITER After a four year hiatus, Rifflandia returned to the City of Victoria, starting on Sept. 15 and closing out on Sept. 18. The festival began in 2008, its first ever lineup featuring Brother Ali, Current Swell, The Beatnuts, and Sweatshop Union, to name a few. Since its inaugural year, the festival has become an important part of Victoria's musical presence and economy. This year, armed with a media pass and a comically large Nalgene water bottle, I attended Rifflandia, seeking an impression of one of Victoria's most anticipated musical events.
DAY ONE Day one of the festival started at only one of its two venues: Electric Avenue. Headlining the main stage was Dillon Francis, a Los Angeles electronic musician and producer. He shared the packed venue with west coast bass-funk artists Stickybuds and the Librarian. Notably, Bridal Party – a local Victoria band – also performed, headlining the venue's smaller, secondary stage. They are a must see live show if you get the chance. With only one venue open and a relatively modest lineup, day one represented a successful ‘getting into gear’ for the days to come.
DAY TWO I spent the early evening hours of day two at the Park, Rifflandia’s colloquial term for its venue constructed at the Royal Athletic Park near downtown Victoria. As a punk fan, I was waiting in anticipation for the promised backto-back performances from iconic groups Pussy Riot and Bikini Kill. But, with little notice, Pussy Riot canceled their set. The rug had clearly been swept out from underneath the feet of punk fans who bought their Rifflandia tickets with the sole purpose of seeing the two groups. An awkward gap between shows was filled with what appeared to be a somewhat improvised “Rifflandia Welcome” speech, which only killed part of the hour prior to Bikini Kill's set. Bikini Kill’s set ruled. Having reunited in 2019 after their 1997 disbandment, they met the crowd with energy and a clear zest for performance. As a band that played a catalyzing role in the empowerment of women in the punk scene, seeing Bikini Kill engage with their audience, complimenting fans' outfits, and taking the time to mention their commitment to fighting for abortion rights in the United States, I felt like I was watching the real deal. Bikini Kill's music aged with grace, and without selling out –– which is something to be said.
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Frankly, I’d pretty much written off the rest of the night, still riding the stoke of Bikini Kill’s set. I was not prepared to have my mind absolutely blown by Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals. Armed with a kit drummer so deep in the pocket you would think he was digging for spare change, Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals delivered a set imbued with musicality. L e o n M o b l e y, t h e b a n d ' s percussionist, engaged the crowd with dynamic and choreographed drum solos, while Harper's vocals subtly highlighted the depth of his talent. After Harper's set, I mosied down to Electric Avenue. I arrived in time to catch the second to last DJ set of the night: Whipped Cream. Whipped Cream is a Nanaimo local and an energetic DJ. As someone who would never pursue a live DJ set on their own time, I was surprised by her. The set was engaging and playful, and it felt good to see a Vancouver Island local on the stage. My time enjoying the DJs at Electric Av e n u e s w a s s h o r t - l i v e d . T h e headliner of the night was DJ Diesel (Shaq) and, as you can imagine, it was a novelty piece more than anything. All I really have to say about Shaq's set is that no one seemed bothered when, twice in the span of five minutes, he enthusiastically told the crowd, “I love you, Vancouver!” That about sums it up.
DAY THREE For me, day three started with Cypress Hill. Standing in the media pit next to the main stage’s bass speaker, my ears underwent a trial of biblical proportions. Delivering a super fun set, Cypress was loud, likable, and recognizable. I just wish I had brought earplugs and a spliff. After that, I was looking to fill time before headliner Charlie XCX took the stage. I wandered across the park to the smaller Rifftop stage to see who was playing. It turned out to be Fantastic Negrito –– an underdog replacement for the Black Pumas, who had pulled out of the festival citing tour burnout. Fantastic Negrito was on stage, but it would be a disservice to say he and his band were simply playing. They were holding court. Fantastic Negrito has described his live shows as “church without the religion.” I’m a believer. H i s ro o t s y b l u e s m u s i c w a s rhythmically poignant and his vocals were emotionally gripping. Charlie XCX’s set was cool if you like stadium pop. My favourite part was when she asked all the bad girls to scream, and you better believe I was screaming.
Day four, in terms of big names, was the real showpiece of Rifflandia. It began with a main stage performance from Zeta Psi alumnus Lauv –– a San Francisco born singer with a dreamy electro pop sound, influenced by jazz roots. Maybe I was simply in a more receptive mood, but Lauv delivered a moody, appealing show, certainly a festival highlight. After Lauv, BBNO$ played the smaller Rifftop stage. BBNO$ has been attributed as calling his music “ignorant but melodic” which holds as an apt description of his silly but lively performance. Closing out day four, and the festival itself, was New Zealand pop aristocrat Lorde. She drew the largest crowd I saw all weekend and brought an elaborate stage setup. Accompanied by a six piece band/ dancer group, her show was a performance event that spoke to her experience as a live performer. Like Charlie XCX, it was stadium pop no doubt, but she brought a bit more class and articulation than some of the other headlining acts. Rifflandia 2022 was exactly what it said it would be. It’s hard to review or describe a festival with over 50 musical guests. One’s individual Rifflandia experience is dictated by the viewing schedule they create themselves. Overall, I thought that the sound quality and production was
BBNO$, photo by Andy Wang.
consistent. There were only a few times when I noticed mixing or monitor issues and even then it only affected a song or two. Likewise, lighting and stage dynamics never distracted from the artists, only complimented them. The festival's energy was confusing at times because of the myriad of genres and artists; the audience represented a fusion of musical cultures and subcultures. Millennial patrons wandered vendor stands and the beer garden like lotus-eaters. EDM and DJ fans jumped from set to set in colorful festival garb and punk attendees quietly mourned the revocation of Pussy Riot from the lineup. One final note on the overall feel of the festival: Rifflandia seemingly had no concern for the environmental
sustainability of their weekend event. Plastic utensils were used by most, if not all, vendors. Simple fixes to address this basic issue would go a long way in having the festival represent a step towards sustainability in music. If asked to sum up my Rifflandia experience in one word I think I would say “satisfactory.” As someone who is typically not a fan of music at such a scale, which is so absorbed with a consumer narrative, I was surprised by some sets and really enjoyed others. My advice to any future Rifflandia attendees is to allow yourself to be exposed to newer, smaller, more local artists. Be willing to be surprised.
Practice makes perfect: A review of Nathan Fielder’s The Rehearsal
UVic alumnus' new humour docuseries a weird, captivating concept ATUM BECKETT SENIOR STAFF WRITER One of the biggest issues with The Rehearsal is that it’s almost impossible to explain to anyone what exactly makes it so great. Nathan Fielder — the creator, writer, and star of HBO’s docuseries The Rehearsal — is a UVic grad who has had a cult-like following since the release of his Comedy Central show Nathan for You in 2013. Fielder, like his comedy, can be odd and confusing at times. He’s awkward, i n s e c u re , a n d s o m e w h a t o f a pathological liar. His brand of filmmaking lands somewhere between a serious docuseries and a prank show, blending the lines between fiction and reality. He’s so desperate to make sure social interactions go well that he is willing to practice them beforehand over and over again — and that is the premise of The Rehearsal. The pilot episode has Fielder helping a man deal with a difficult situation that he has been putting off: telling his friend that he only has a bachelor’s degree, not a master’s. To do this, Fielder puts HBO’s lavish budget to full use, creating a life-size replica of a bar inside a warehouse. Actors are hired to be in the background and make the situation feel slightly less artificial. With an actor hired to play the part of the subject’s friend, Fielder runs them through every possible outcome, allowing the man to be prepared for anything that might happen in the real situation.
Promo image sourced from HBO.
While Fielder has an unmatchable skill when it comes to thinking up outlandish ideas like this, his true genius comes from his ability to find the most unique and idiosyncratic individuals who are willing to be a part of his show. Throughout its short six-episode season, The Rehearsal goes through many drastic changes. It’s clear that the original ambition for the show was to do more large-scale experiments in public like what is seen in the pilot episode. But like many shows, it was heavily affected by COVID-19. Busy social settings were no longer possible, so the scale and size of the show shrinks down. While many shows and movies let the pandemic affect their quality, The Rehearsal does just the opposite. Having limitations on what was possible allowed for creativity that never would have come to light otherwise.
Fielder has always tiptoed the line of morality with his work, as sometimes it can feel almost exploitative the way he uses willing participants as a joke. The Rehearsal is not free from this, but as the series progresses this concern is brought up and explored in a way that only Fielder could pull off. If you are not a fan of awkwardness, cringe, or avant-garde docuseries, The Rehearsal may not be the show for you. But if you enjoy humor, weirdness, pure creativity, and a concept that is explored to its fullest extent every episode, you owe it to yourself to at least give the pilot episode a chance. Once you start, you might find it impossible to look away, and catch yourself rehearsing a coherent way to convince your friends to watch it too.
LIFESTYLE & SPORTS
Reinventing yourself: Three hobbies to make yourself sound interesting
New semester, new hobbies, new you ATUM BECKETT SENIOR STAFF WRITER No one wants to be stuck in the position where you're asked about your hobbies and the only things that come to mind are scrolling TikTok and doing homework. A new school year is a new chance to reinvent yourself. It’s important to find something to do that you find enjoyable and that isn’t related to your school and work. In this modern day of hustle culture it can feel like you’re falling behind if you’re not constantly working on your career or education. But whether you want to meet new people, discover a new passion, find a
way to unwind, or simply just sound more interesting to your peers, finding a fulfilling hobby is vital for keeping a sustainable work-life balance. Getting into a new hobby can be intimidating. There are the different costs associated with starting out, the feeling of lostness, and the anxiety that comes with trying to meet new people who already know so much about it. The fear of failure can be enough to deter someone from even trying in the first place. To give you a starting point for things to get into or to simply sound sophisticated at your next party, here are three hobbies I recommend!
DESIGNER BOARD GAMES
Board games have grown much further than just Monopoly and Clue. European designers have been pushing the genre into exciting lands for many years, and the industry in North America keeps gaining popularity. Many people know of, or might have even tried, Catan. It, and many other games like Ticket to Ride and Carcassonne are referred to as “gateway” games, as they are a great way to see what the hobby can offer. But they are just the tip of the cardboard box iceberg. There are historical games, abstract role-playing games, and eight-hour long intergalactic battle games. Whether you want to throw some dice and push around plastic game pieces, or sit around with your friends filling in glorified spreadsheets, there is something for everyone. In this day and age, it’s rare to find something to do that doesn’t involve staring at a screen. If you’re interested in learning more about board games, there are several cafés downtown where you can play a game from their library while sipping on a pint. The UVic Games Club, which can be found on Facebook and Discord, is another way to try it out and meet like-minded individuals.
“What the hell is tufting?” is the question you’ll probably be asked once you tell people about this unique hobby. Simply the name for rug making, tufting involves repeatedly threading yarn through a fabric to create a rug. Getting started can be pricey. Equipment needed includes a frame, backing fabric, yarn, and the pièce de resistance — the rug gun. These handheld machines run into the hundreds of dollars, but cheaper (and sometimes less reliable) alternatives can be found on sites like AliExpress. Once you have your setup and gain some experience, the sky becomes the limit. Cartoon characters, abstract patterns, words — if you can imagine it, you can probably tuft it. The social media community around tufting is a great way to learn techniques and get inspiration for new projects. If making money off your hobbies interests you, taking commissions for custom rugs can be quite lucrative. If the steep entry price is a deterrent, punch needles are a very economical way to give the hobby a shot. Threading the rugs by hand takes much longer, but the level of detail achievable is much greater.
Hiking is old news and jogging is too hard. The low-entry sport of racewalking is worth trying out if not only to be able to tell people you do it. No, racewalking is not just walking quickly, there are two important rules to it. First, you must always have contact with the ground. This is what differentiates it from running, as having both feet off the ground is means for disqualification. Second, the leg touching the ground must stay completely straight until your body passes over it. This leads to the signature hip wiggle that makes racewalking so entertaining to watch. Although not officially an Olympic sport anymore, racewalking is still taken seriously by many. Throw on some running shoes, put on a podcast, and give it a shot — you might be surprised with how fast you can actually walk. If not for anything else, being able to walk incredibly quickly can be the difference when trying to make it from the Fine Arts building to the McKinnon building in the 10 minutes between classes.
Photo by Atum Beckett.
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I tested positive for queer.
LIFESTYLE & SPORTS
Meal prepping and sustainable living doesn’t have to be a daunting task ATUM BECKETT SENIOR STAFF WRITER With fall classes started, it can be easy to find yourself on campus rushed between classes and hungry, forcing you to turn to one of the many convenient food options around you. Similarly, cooking dinner after a long day while homework is piling up around you might be the last thing you want to worry about, making fast food or takeout look that much more appealing. While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying a meal out, it can be easy to fall into a habit of relying on it. Eating out every day can quickly become a staggering expense, not to mention that it can be difficult to know exactly how healthy what you’re eating is and where the ingredients came from. Cooking for yourself — especially for students living away from home for the first time — can feel daunting. The planning, grocery shopping, execution, and cleanup can make opening up SkipTheDishes or Uber Eats seem like the best option. But, cooking for yourself and meal prepping can be a great way to save money, eat better, live more sustainably, and build habits and skills that will stay helpful throughout your entire life.
GETTING STARTED The easiest way to fail at building a new habit is to go all in too quickly. Staying consistent with small progressions slowly will make lifestyle changes actually effective. Try bringing lunch to campus once a week, or swapping takeout with a homemade dinner. Once you feel comfortable with these changes, then you can increase their frequency. If you truly have zero cooking experience, try not to feel intimidated. We live in a world of endless content online ranging from absolute basics to complex techniques, all for free and with video instructions. YouTube and other social media can teach anything from knife skills to meal ideas. Some content creators with easy-tofollow recipes and techniques are Adam Ragusea, Ethan Chlebowski, and Pro Home Cooks.
MEAL PREP ESSENTIALS Meal prepping is the act of cooking a large quantity of food or meals and portioning it to eat throughout the week. It is a great way to get rid of the hard choice of deciding what to eat during the week, as well as saving on cooking and cleaning time. The most important thing for starting to meal prep is a good set of containers.
Illustration by Sie Douglas-Fish.
This can be anything from two-dollar tupperware to expensive bamboo bento boxes. Anything that can effectively store and hold food will do the trick. There is a reason so many inter net chefs use plastic deli containers, as they are cheap, stack well in the fridge, and are incredibly versatile. Just try to get something that won’t explode open in your backpack during class. Consider the following when picking what to meal prep: how will this keep throughout the week, how quickly will I get tired of eating it, and does it fit with my lifestyle and sustainability
goals. Try cooking new things, exploring new cuisines, and finding recipes that you actually want to eat.
SUSTAINABILITY Buying in bulk can be an economical and more sustainable way to do your grocery shopping. Instead of trying to buy all your food at once, shop around. Slowly build up a pantry of basics. Use apps like Flipp to look for weekly specials. Utilize the many specialty grocery stores in Victoria for ingredients that you may have never heard or thought of.
Cutting down on meat and animal products can be a great way to reduce f o o d c o s t s a n d l e a d a m o re environmentally friendly and healthy lifestyle. Vegan does not need to mean bland or boring. With plant-based protein sources like tofu, lentils, seitan, and a wide array of fake meats like Impossible and Beyond, it’s never been easier to try and make changes in your diet. Many cultures and cuisines around the world have been plant-based for centuries, and have great ideas for meatless dishes. If you’re wanting to take your sustainability further, you can look towards trying one of the sustainable stores in town, like the Zero Waste Emporium or West Coast Refill. Interested in learning how to grow your own food? Try getting involved with the UVic community garden. With the rapidly increasing costs of living, buying enough groceries for a full week at once can be financially undoable for many. The UVSS Food Bank and Free Store is a stigma-free way to get groceries and household items if you are a student in need, and can be visited by appointment in the basement of the Student Union Building.
How to become BFFs with your professor
Reaching out to your prof might be daunting, but it could lead to success SAJJAN SARAI SENIOR STAFF WRITER
Forming new friendships is one of the building blocks of a good university experience. Students who are headed towards completing their degree tend to have a core group of friends or a sense of camaraderie on campus — and at this point in the semester, most first-years have had the chance to start making friends through classes, clubs, or parties. But the most overlooked friendship might be one with your professor. Building rapport with a professor is a relationship that can foster growth and success in your academic and professional life. Many students might be hesitant to pursue such connections or may not know how to approach their profs. Building that rapport requires some effort from students. Dr. Michael Reed, a medieval studies prof here at UVic, states that an easy way to get to know your professor is to come to office hours. “50 percent if not 60 percent of my students never come to office hours,” he says, adding that, “office hours are a wonderful time, particularly at the beginning of the year, to introduce yourself.” Reed emphasizes the importance of visiting your professor while they are in their office, and also says that taking multiple classes with the same professor can help this process. “When you take multiple courses with that person, you are engaging with that person in different contexts … you're seeing different facets, different nuances of that person. And also it's just a question of the longer you spend with someone, you get to know them better.” This strategy is often conducive to better grades and success in general too, since “you get to know what they expect,” says Reed. This is crucial, as the requirements on essays and projects differ from one professor to another, and a better understanding of their teaching style and expectations will put you on the right path.
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Photo by Sie Douglas-Fish
Moreover, building rapport in these ways can lead to future references for graduate school or employment. According to Reed, a strong personal relationship with a professor is necessary for a reference, as many times students can be turned down. “Most people are too polite to say 'no I won't provide the reference,'” he says, adding that, “if the student gets a message from the prof which isn't an immediate yes, maybe ‘I'm very busy’ or ‘I don't know you quite well enough,’ drop it like a lead fish.” There are many reasons why a professor might not reciprocate your effort to build rapport. Reed says there is hesitation from professors because “if [they] are too friendly, that could maybe be misconstrued as something inappropriate.” This is something to note for students. Approaching a professor must be done in a professional and academically appropriate way. Moreover, knowing the professor’s pronouns and title is also important. “Check your syllabus, check the emails you get from your prof, see what their signature line is,” says Reed. This is a simple thing to look for, and it can change a professor’s attitude toward you.
Finally, Reed believes that finding interests outside of the course can help to build rapport. It could be gaming (Reed specifically said “play D&D”), music, sports, etc. If you can find interests outside of the course, it would expand the relationship from just course material. Becoming friends with your professor seems like a tough task, but this is a great blueprint for students to get started with. This advice could help improve your grades or get you a glowing reference later on in your life. If you have a professor you like and you notice you have some similar interests, approach them professionally and take the time to introduce yourself during their office hours. This is especially good practice if you know you will encounter them again later in your degree. If their office hours don’t work for you, plenty of professors are willing to accommodate a meeting scheduled at another date and time. So, don’t be afraid to ask, because you could miss out on some of the most lucrative friendships the campus has to offer.
LIFESTYLE & SPORTS
UVic Wears Prada: What staff and students are wearing on campus this fall
Students and staff on campus brandish their own unique fashion styles as they return for the school year for plus-sized people,” says Decrausaz. “[Basically] any option other than a conservative way of dressing plus-sized bodies, which tends to be about hiding your body versus saying 'no, you can have a body and show it' — that’s fine!”
KARLEY SIDER SENIOR STAFF WRITER From the early 2000s filled with Uggs and leggings fashion, to the late 2010s defined by the VSCO-girl era, to the 2022 resurgence of dad jeans, Y2K, and '90s styles, “what’s been in” over the decades proves that fashion is both fluid and cyclical. The Devil Wears Prada puts it best: “Fashion is not about utility. An accessory is merely a piece of iconography used to express individual identity,” says Doug, a friend of Anne Hathaway’s character in the iconic film. For many, fashion is a language and an extension of self that speaks to who you are as an individual. So, what are UVic students and staff wearing on campus this fall?
QUINCY PIKE Meet Quincy Pike, an environmental science student at UVic. Sporting a pink bandana in her hair, baggy pants, and an over-the-shoulder, multi-patterned bag, she is definitely a standout in the crowd for her individualized style. Pike describes her look as a mix of “hippie, boho, botanist, forest-dweller, hike-y, and granola-y.” “I find myself quite inspired by the people around me, especially other people who are in environmental [studies], or more earthy people," says Pike. "[I like] nice fabrics that are sustainable, like linen. Something light, thrifted, obviously, [that’s] better for the planet.”
Sarah -Louise Decrausaz (left) and Zuhaib Muneer (right), photos by Karley Sider.
SARAH-LOUISE DECRAUSAZ If you were walking around during the Clubs and Course Unions Day at the Student Union Building, you could not have missed Sarah-Louise Decrausaz, a staff member here at UVic. Dressed in a bright patterned dress with blue hair and orange earrings, she caught eyes wherever she went. She says her style is a bit of everything, but always a little '80s.
“I don’t think it’s in right now,” says Decrausaz, when prompted about how trendy her style choices are. “I don’t tend to go with all of whatever is in at the time. I just pick and choose whatever I like!” She mentions the TV show RuPaul’s Drag Race as particularly inspiring in her fashion journey, as well as plus-sized activist and model, Tess Holiday. “I guess trying to look for more options for plus-sized bodies — I’d love to do thrifting but a lot of the time … there aren’t a lot of amazing thrifting options
If you need fashion advice or inspiration, look no further. Zuhaib Muneer, a psychology and anthropology student here at UVic, is the one to talk to. “My inspiration definitely comes from a lot of fashion shows, mostly Instagram fashion. But also a lot from the queer, drag culture [scene],” says Muneer, dressed in a dark blue polo shirt, a brown corduroy tote bag, and a stylish pair of sunglasses. “I’m very involved in the LGBT scene, so a lot of the queer artists do definitely inspire a lot of my feminine looks. Today I’m not doing a feminine look. I’m in the middle — kind of masculine, kind of feminine — depends on my mood that day.” An admirer of the film The Devil Wears Prada, he says that the iconic character Miranda Priestly, played by Meryl Streep, is definitely an inspiration. “But other specific artists that I pick up from are people and designers like Christian Cowan. I take inspiration from a lot of Pakistani designers as well,” he says.
ELAINE BALOGUN Thinking about investing in accessories to spice up your look? Elaine Balogun, a grad student at UVic, is the accessory and
fashion queen. Her dangling pearl-based earrings could be seen from miles away. “Earrings are such a good conversation starter!” says Balogun. “I also really love shoes; shoes are so fun! Accessories are the name of the game.” As a big fan of looking for fashion inspiration from people on campus, Balogun loves when people play with more gender non-conforming and fluid clothing. “I’m a big fan of looking around and seeing what other folks are wearing and picking and choosing,” she says. “And kind of thrifting and mixing it up [with] different eras. I gravitate towards anything that speaks to me.”
DANIEL KOPAEE Last, but certainly not least, is Daniel Kopaee, both a psychology student at UVic and an active fighter for fashion individuality. Kopaee, in his carpenter pants, red converse, and striped vest, mainly likes to accessorize by wearing his signature sunflower necklace. “I try to bridge the different worlds I’m a part of, [which is being involved in] psychedelics and psychedelic therapy,” he says. “So [my fashion is] kind of like some '60s, hippie, beatnik kind of thing. But I’m also a carpenter and a builder!” Kopaee is a big advocate for people not just to follow trends, but to be themselves in what they choose to wear. “I don’t pay attention to trends; I just wear what I like. I think that people’s most authentic expression of their inner character at that moment is probably going to be received well.”
Let’s work together & create
A Saanich for Everyone! PLEASE RE-ELECT
VOLUME 75 The Martlet Publishing Society is an incorporated B.C. society and operates based on our Statement of Principles. We strive to act as an agent of constructive social change and will not publish racist, sexist, homophobic or otherwise oppressive copy.
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Isabella Kennedy firstname.lastname@example.org
SENIOR STAFF WRITERS Atum Beckett, Sajjan Sarai, Karley Sider
DESIGN DIRECTOR Sie Douglas-Fish email@example.com
CONTRIBUTORS Ethan Barkley, Noah Letourneau, Ashlee Levy, Guy Rosenfeld, Hannah Seaton, Caroline Tucker, Andy Wang
VOLUNTEER STAFF WRITERS Kristen de Jager, Raheem Uz Zaman
OPERATIONS MANAGER Mary MacLeod firstname.lastname@example.org
This issue's cover illustration is by Sie Douglas-Fish, design director.
SENIOR STAFF EDITORS Yo'ad Eilon-Heiber, Aidan Nelson-Sandmark
Our paper is written and published on the unceded lands of the Lekwungen peoples, and the Songhees, Esquimalt and WSÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.
SEPTEMBER 29TH, 2022