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The Beacon

Student Newspaper of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts North Adams, Mass.

Volume 74 Issue 2 For more content, visit online at:

Th u r s d ay, S e p t e m b e r 2 9 , 2 0 1 1

Charon updates the Trustees Director of Public Safety Joseph Charon updated the Board of Trustees on Tuesday about arming the officers. By John Durkan Editor-in-Chief

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Director of Public Safety Joseph Charon updated the Board of Trustees about his summer research.

Director of Public Safety Joseph Charon presented a PowerPoint that updated the Board of Trustees on Tuesday about arming the Public Safety officers. Charon said that in May 2011, he reported to the Board of Trustees and was granted to further research and develop an implementation plan over the summer. “I took the information from our community meetings and the questions, concerns and comments related to [that information] and I was able to develop four focus areas: policy, psychological suitability screening, training, and cost analysis,” Charon said. In the area of policy, Charon

ARAMARK addresses concerns

said he reviewed other state universities’ policies and their use of force policies. During the May and June meetings, Charon explained the use of force model as one of the four key points for needing the implementation of firearms. He said that in the situation of an assailant being armed with a firearm, a Public Safety officer would need to also have a firearm to react to the situation. “You know the saying, ‘Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight.’ It’s a lot like that,” Charon said on the June 22 community meeting. As for psychology suitability training, Charon told the Trustees that while conducting research on other state universities he identified the process for conducting the suitability fitness testing.

“It’s important to know that the testing is not just specific to the officers here at MCLA, but it’s generalized to the profession of law enforcement,” Charon said. “So this is suitability testing that all police officers would go through as a measure of professional standards for becoming armed.” Charon also said that he researched firearm training information such as the training locations, costs, scheduling and availability. In addition to firearm research, Charon said he looked into community concerns correlated to arming the officers, such as deescalation techniques. Charon reviewed his cost-analysis research to the Board of Trustees, stating that implementation costs an estimated $25,000 and

the annual cost is about $6,000. The next step of Charon’s work will be the continuation of community meetings throughout the fall. “These meetings are designed for two purposes,” Charon said. “One, it’s to provide those smaller community environments with the update on the work I did over the summer and also to provide an additional venue for people to ask more questions, and offer their concerns and opinions. As we work through the fall semester we’re hoping these conversations will further inform the Board and lead to a subsequent presentation related to the arming of campus police.” TRUSTEES, continued on page 3

Trailblazers fall, 2-0

At Monday’s SGA meeting, Director of Dining John Kozik and Kara Daoust answered students’ questions regarding the recently implemented meal plan. By Skyla Seamans Senior News Editor

At SGA’s meeting Monday night, Director of Dining John Kozik and Kara Daoust from ARAMARK answered students’ questions regarding the new meal plan. “The all-you-can-eat system is completely new to us,” Daoust said. “We didn’t realize how intense it would be, especially since there are no other options because of the reconstruction.” The main student concern is not being able to take food out of the Centennial Room, especially when there is little time to eat between classes, Senator Jason Brown said. “With any type of buffet, food is eaten within the facility,” Daoust said. “The meal plan has the same concept as every buffet style restaurant. I know a lot of people are upset but this is how the program was built.” BeaconMCLA MCLABeacon

Students do have the option of requesting replacement meals, she said. If students are unable to sit down for a meal because of sports games or classes, they can request a meal to be picked up in Bowman. Public Relations Chair Kate Moore expressed concern that the cafeteria is becoming a less social place, but Daoust assures that the number of students using the meal plan has not decreased because of the new system. “Only the first phase of construction is complete,” Kozik said. “When phase two is finished and students are able to use the Market Place, there will be many more options and a to-go system will be set in place. For now, we want students to give us time to get the second phase running.” Senator Catt Chaput also encourages students to be patient and understanding.

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Jake McCall tries to evade Salem State’s players in last week’s game. The Trailblazers fell to 3-4-1 overall with a 2-0 loss against its Conference foe. Sports, page 9

ARAMARK, continued on page 3

Final DownStreet Art of the season tonight! The community celebrates the opening of exhibitions downtown from 6 to 9 p.m. Arts and Entertainment, page 6

FreshGrass a success! Yonder Mountain String Band, Del McCoury, and more performed at Mass. MoCA last weekend. Arts and Entertainment, page 8


News World News Features A&E Sports: Science

2-3 4 5 6-8 9-11 12

Letters to the Editor Campus Comment Opinions Comics/Games Horoscopes Photo Essay

13 13 14 15 15 16

News 2 Chaput runs for city council Ashland parking lot Thursday, September 29, 2011

opens; Blackinton parking lot closes

By Jessica Gamari Staff Writer

Young people and politics are rarely paired together, but junior Catherine “Catt” Chaput is trying to change that. Chaput is a candidate in the 2011 North Adams City Council election. “I think it’s long overdue that someone our age is in council,” Chaput said. “It’s discouraging how our generation is pulled from politics and government in general. We’ve given up…local politics are something we have legitimate say in.” While city meetings are open to the public, students rarely run for council positions. Chaput, however, is not the first. Paul Babeu, MCLA graduate of 1992, was 18 when elected to City Council, but lost in the run for mayor in 2001. In her sophomore year Chaput realized how much North Adams has to offer. She and her friends brainstormed ways to improve the area, and brought it to the mayor. “I realized that it’s only when I’m inside can I make a difference,” she said. “This is where I need to be.” Sophomore Rachel DeRose grew up in the area, and is excited to see a student running for council. “I would be delighted to see a member of the student body elected,” DeRose said. “I feel that would be beneficial not only to the College and the students, but the surrounding community.” “The city needs to stop thinking of us as ‘youth,’” Chaput said. “We spend our lives and our money here. If the city and MCLA worked better together, they could help build each other and both would flourish.” At school, Chaput is involved with History Society, STAGE, has served as chair of MASSPIRG for

By Skyla Seamans

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Junior Catt Chaput will run for city council this year. three semesters, and spent three years as a SGA Senator at Large. She also worked in the mayor’s office for work study, reading annual reports and filing paper work. “I’m easy to go to if people have ideas,” she said. “If I can’t help them, I guide them in the right direction. I get along well with older people, but some don’t take me seriously. They think I’m naïve just because I’m young.” Senior Todd Foy, president of SGA, believes that the school is already in a well established relationship with the city. Students currently organize many of the events in the city such as Gallery 51, DownStreet Art, and many events at Mass. MoCA. “Being on City Council is something that takes a lot of responsibility and understanding,” Foy

said. “We students are only here eight months a year, so I don’t think we can say that we have the experience or knowledge to hold a city-wide office.” Council members serve on committees like housing, traffic, health, finance, and many more. After graduation, Chaput would like to stay in the Berkshires working on a non-profit or action council. For now, she is getting used to a new semester, and free time is devoted to printing signs and bumper stickers, and meeting people in the community. To raise extra money for the campaign, she sold hand-knit dishcloths. The election will be Nov. 8 at St. Elizabeth’s Parish Center and Greylock School. Registration to vote in the November election ends mid October.

Public Safety completes first moving phase By Chris Goodell Managing Editor

The first phase of Public Safety’s transition into its new Ashland Street location is complete and provides the department with a more functional workspace. “[Phase one] consisted of a redesign of the floor plan in the front half of the building,” said Joe Charon, director of Public Safety. Charon stated that over the summer the College worked with McCann Technical High School to redesign the Brewer Perkins Building. New features include an emergency generator, new doors, carpeting, and paint jobs. “Phase two will bring the building up to full law enforcement function,” he said, adding that he does not know when Phase two will take place. Public Safety currently occupies just the front half of the building, but will eventually move into the

The newly expanded parking lot at 341 Ashland St. officially opened for student use on Sept. 22. This new lot is connected to the existing resident student parking lot and has added 56 parking spaces to the original 42, totaling 98 parking spaces for residential students in this particular lot. However, the parking lots on the north side of Blackinton Street closed on Sept. 25, in preparation for construction associated with the Center for Science and Innovation. These lots include the Admissions Office lot, the unpaved residential student lot, and the Montana Street commuter student lot, according to Dianne Manning, director of Residential Programs and Services. James Stakenas, vice president of Administration and Finance, said the College had an opportunity a year ago to replace lost parking during Science Center renovations when it purchased the Shapiro and Sons warehouse. “In essence, we aren’t losing parking spaces,” Stakenas said. “They are just in different locations.” The completed parking lot is well lit and has an emergency solar and cellular phone box to use when needed. “The demolition began in February,” Stakenas said, “and it was al-

ways the College’s intention to create additional parking spaces there.” According to Stakenas, the College also cleaned up the back of the parking lot and a fence will be put in place to provide security to vehicles. “We did this out of practicality,” he said. “We wanted to create a nicer lot where students could park their vehicles closer to campus. Residential students essentially use their cars less than commuters, so having the lot across the street is convenient and ideal.” All other faculty and staff parking lots will remain open, and additional faculty and staff parking will be available at 341 Ashland Street on the side of the warehouse building closest to the railroad bridge, also known as the south end, Stakenas said. Commuter students will have access to parking in the Berkshire Towers parking lot and Church Street Center lot. In addition, Stakenas said, the College is working with the city of North Adams on ways to make additional parking options available for commuter student use. “Right now, we seem to have the appropriate number of resident student parking spaces to meet student demand,” Manning said. “Students are welcome to contact our office regarding the current availability of resident student parking spaces at this time.”


Beta Lambda Rush

Senior News Editor

entire building, Charon said. He stated the new layout of the building is better suited for the needs of Public Safety than its previous Campus Center location. “It’s more about the layout and the functionality that the building offers us,” Charon said. Public Safety now has its own lobby to serve as a waiting area and its dispatch and administrative areas are now separate, offering more privacy. “In the Campus Center, if people had a problem other people could see them readily,” Charon said, referring to how the old waiting area was an open, hightraffic hallway. He also stated that having its own building on a main road makes Public Safety more of a presence in the community. “It gives the community the sense that there’s a Public Safety Department,” Charon said, rather

than just a Public Safety office. Despite Public Safety now being further away from Berkshire Towers and Hoosac Hall, Charon does not believe this will affect its ability to respond to situations. “We continue to use the same techniques for patrolling,” he said. “We haven’t changed our policing philosophies or our ability to service the campus.” The Public Safety Department has also set up an information booth in the Campus Center, just inside the Montana Street entrance, where students can sign out keys to various campus locations. “I honestly don’t know how permanent it is,” Charon said. “It’s certainly a pilot program that we’re evaluating.” He added that this information booth could be moved to the Market Place once renovations are complete, although no plans are finalized yet.

Colleges Against Cancer will hold its first meeting on Oct. 3. If you are interested in joining, contact Samantha Bergman via FirstClass for more info.

21 Blackinton St. Wednesday, Oct. 5, 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, 7-9 p.m. Rush is a time to come, meet the sisters, and hang out commitment free. There will be food and drinks provided, music, and a good time. All girls welcome.

Thursday, September 29, 2011



Gerol Petruzella ponders the MASSPIRG kicks off meaning of true happiness By John Durkan Editor-in-Chief

By Skyla Seamans Senior News Editor

Philosophy professor Gerol Petruzella spoke on the meaning of true happiness at Friday’s Brown Bag Lecture, “Confluence of Contemporary Neuroscience and Sociology with Ancient Eudaimonism.” “Although it is something that is so trite and obvious,” he said, “money is not happiness, nor does it lead us to happiness.” Petruzella studied ancient Greek philosophy during his graduate research and questioned what it means to live a good life in a richer, deeper way. “Happiness is a state of being,” he said. “It’s more complex than merely pleasure. It combines all kinds of values, from social status and leisure time to families and engagement.” Petruzella’s lecture surveyed a variety of disciplines and their thoughts on happiness. Happiness economics is the idea that well-being can be measured, he said. Positive psychology seeks to find ways so everyone’s lives can be more fulfilling. “The three criteria that seem to be in common in all disciplines are pleasure, meaning, and engagement,” Petruzella said. “These are the major elements to see if a person is truly leading a happy life.” Petruzella’s interest has always been trying to understand what happiness actually is, although he would not discern his own exact definition. “Ancient philosophers, like Aristotle and Socrates, have always wrestled with this topic,” he said. “It’s important to know that achieving the good life is possible

Photo Courtesy/Gerol Petruzella

Gerol Petruzella believes a happy life is one balanced with pleasure, meaning, and engagement. for everyone.” out this year. Unfortunately, he said, many Senior Shelby Giaccarini said she of the elements that make up the has always been fascinated with good life are not in our control: ancient Greek philosophy and was being born healthy; having the pleased to hear the topic tied in chance to gain an education; being with other disciplines during the raised in an accepting home; and lecture. being treated well by surrounding “It was really great to see somepeople. thing that combined eudaimonia, “The best possible life is a mixed the Greek word for happiness and life,” he said. “It combines plea- well-being, with more modern sure, reason, virtue, wisdom, and ideas like neuroscience and ecomorality.” nomics,” she said. “Petruzella is Petruzella also said doing what truly an indispensable member of is right and other criteria may be the Philosophy Department and I characteristics of our personali- would love to see him part of the ties and therefore are near impos- full-time faculty.” sible to obtain. The lecture ended with philoso“What human happiness really phy professor David Johnson runmeans matters most deeply and ning out of the building, with volpragmatically today,” he said. leyballs in tow, realizing he was late He also talked about a book he for his afternoon volleyball match. is currently working on that ad“Speaking of happiness,” Johndresses these questions and issues. son said. “Happiness is a bag of He said his book will be coming volleyballs.”

Abe Scarr, the organizing director of Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group (MASSPIRG), encouraged the group to aspire towards its goals at its kick-off meeting on Sept. 21. “There are more problems than we deserve and more solutions than we use,” Scarr said to a group of roughly 20 students. “I think it’s great you guys are here tonight, it’s a first step to having an impact on these issues.” MASSPIRG, a public interest group with 14 different chapters in Mass., seeks for changes to many public policies and issues, both locally and globally. This year, the group’s top priority is to change the Massachusetts Bottle Bill of 1982. According to the Massachusetts Department of Revenue Web site, the bill placed a five cent deposit on beer, malt, and carbonated soft drinks. Junior Steve Danowitz, the group’s Bottle Bill coordinator, explained that back in the early 1980s, a market for many bottled substances, such as juice and sports drinks, did not exist. These bottles are still produced without the five cent deposit. “What we’re trying to do is make the Bottle Bill universal on all bottles,” Danowitz said. Danowitz explained that one step to help encourage change to this 29-year-old legislation is for more public awareness. Emily Gorden, the new MASSPIRG campus organizer at MCLA, spoke about the group’s plans to continue its Hunger and Homelessness campaign. This year, MASSPIRG hopes to provide as much help as possible to people affected locally by Tropical

Photo by John Durkan/Beacon Staff

Abe Scarr speaks at the first MASSPIRG meeting. Storm Irene, such as the residents of Spruces Mobile Home Park. According to an article, nearly 300 residents were displaced after their homes were flooded. The group plans to run an essentials drive near Halloween and this weekend will team up with BCC students for a day of service at the Spruces from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Another huge focus for MASSPIRG is its Energy Service Corps, which seeks to inform the youth about improving energy effectiveness and to instill energy conservation into their lives at a young age. The Energy Service Corps also intends to inform the public on the weatherization of its homes, both in the summer and winter. MASSPIRG is mostly funded by a $9 fee (which can be waived) to cover its expenses, which includes staff wages and lawyers. The group is entering its 39th year. MASSPIRG meets every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in Bowman Hall room 101.

ARAMARK speaks Charon updates Trustees at SGA meeting TRUSTEES, continued from page 1

The next meeting is scheduled for Nov. 16 at a location and time to be announced. Charon also informed the Trustees about the completion of phase one of the Public Safety office’s move to Ashland Street. The PowerPoint summed this up as “New Location, Fresh Look, Same Service.” Charon told the Trustees that he used a media campaign to spread the word about the move with email announcements, signs, and map updates.

ARAMARK, continued from page 1

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Church Street Center auditorium to be renamed

The Board of Trustees met with President Mary Grant on Tuesday in the first business meeting of the semester.

The Board of Trustees unaminously voted to rename the Church Street Center auditorium. The renaming will be dedicated to the late Eleanor Furst Roberts. According to a 2002 iBerkshires article, MCLA received a $1.16 million gift from the late Roberts’ estate. Roberts, whose mother was a

member of the Hardman family that owned the North Adams Transcript until 1975, was raised in North Adams and attended the former Mark Hopkins School.

The mascot work will begin in a few days.

New Mascot

After a closed door executive discussion, the Board of Trustees determined that President Mary Grant excelled in all aspects, receiving an “outstanding” rating.

Dean of Students Charlotte Degen announced plans for a new mascot for next year.

Trustees review President Mary Grant’s performance

“More and more colleges are using the all-you-can-eat system and it works,” she said. “Since it is a large change for current MCLA students, it will take time to adjust to the new system.” The current meal plans are set for the academic year. ARAMARK worked with the College to design these plans to fit the students’ needs, Daoust said. If students have specific allergies that affect their dining experience, Daoust encourages students to let ARAMARK know and they will make accommodations. “We are also working on providing more vegetarian and gluten free options,” she said. “We have to put in for exceptions when there are certain needs students have. The retail section also has a complete vegetarian line, which students can choose from when the Market Place opens in late November.” Kozik will meet with Dean of Students Charlotte Degen to-

day regarding how students will be able to utilize cafeteria space in the future. There will also be Food Committee meetings to come to confront further student concerns. SGA meetings are held Mondays at 7 p.m. in Campus Center 324A and are open to the public.

Photo by Dennise Carranza/Beacon Staff

SGA President Todd Foy speaks at Monday’s meeting.


Thursday, September 29, 2011

National/World News

Congress debates spending Obama speaks on Congress allows shutdown for second time in nine months. upcoming election By Laurie Kellman Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Congress is once again allowing shutdown politics to bring the federal government to the brink of closing. For the second time in nine months, lawmakers are bickering and posturing over spending plans. The difference this time is that everyone agrees on the massive barrel of money to keep the government running for another seven weeks. “It is embarrassing,’’ Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., admitted Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.’’ Warner asked: “Can we, once again, inflict on the country and the American people the spectacle of a near government shutdown?’’ At issue is a small part of the almost $4 trillion budget intended for an infrequent purpose: federal dollars to help victims of floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters and whether some of the expense should be offset by cuts in other government spending. FEMA estimates that as of Monday morning, it had $114 million left in its disaster relief account, enough to last until Thursday or Friday, said agency spokeswoman Rachel Racusen. That is a couple of days longer than FEMA estimated last week, which an agency official attributed to unused money FEMA has been able to reclaim from grants to states for recovery projects that have been completed. Those extra days are significant because that means FEMA may not need additional money to function until Saturday, when the govern-

ment’s new fiscal year begins. That takes some pressure off House and Senate leaders who have been unable to strike a compromise on a bill providing disaster relief and financing the government until midNovember. The current standoff raises a question: If lawmakers can’t even agree to help victims of natural disasters, how are they going to strike a deal to cut $1.5 trillion in spending this fall in the white-hot climate of presidential and congressional politics? The uncertainty isn’t helping officials in Joplin, Mo., desperate to rebuild homes and put people back to work after a devastating tornado in May. “We can appreciate the efforts to get our national economy in better order, but we’re concerned about how that’s going to affect us,” Joplin Mayor Mike Woolston said Friday, as Congress headed home for the weekend, the standoff unresolved. Woolston said he thinks lawmakers will come to an agreement before the Federal Emergency Management Agency runs out of money. “But the devil’s in the details,’’ he said. ``How long will it take, how much disaster funding will there be?’’ Uncertain is whether the closely divided Senate and Republicancontrolled House can find reason to agree, and then do it -- a tall order against a history of nick-of-time accords over the budget in April and raising the debt limit in late July. This time, even the promise of a scheduled vacation this week couldn’t break the impasse. Lawmakers instead backed themselves

into a new standoff last Friday, requiring at least the Senate to come back in session part of this week. On Friday, the Democratic-controlled Senate blocked the House bill that would provide stop-gap federal spending, plus aid for people battered by a spate of natural disasters. The legislation also calls for $1.6 billion in spending cuts to help defray the disaster costs. The House, meanwhile, left town for a weeklong recess and the Jewish holidays. Democrats complained that it’s unprecedented and unfair to insist that spending cuts accompany badly needed emergency aid. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who earlier in the week had said passage of the bill was urgent, on Friday put off a vote until Monday. The only option, he said, was to “capitulate to the job-destroying bill” from the House. While Warner joined those blaming tea party-driven House Republicans, Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., pointed to Reid. “He manufactured a crisis all week about disaster when there’s no crisis,’’ Alexander told CNN. He accused Democrats of “chest-pounding and game-playing.” Republicans say that with a $14 trillion-plus national debt, voters will find it outrageous that Democrats wouldn’t accept $1.6 billion in spending cuts. Democrats, they said, had not learned the lesson of the 2010 elections, when tea partybacked conservatives won enough seats to give Republicans control of the House.

Saudi woman punished for driving

King Abdullah’s promise to protect women’s rights is questioned. By Maggie Michael Associated Press CAIRO — A Saudi woman was sentenced Tuesday to be lashed 10 times with a whip for defying the kingdom’s prohibition on female drivers, the first time a legal punishment has been handed down for a violation of the longtime ban in the ultraconservative Muslim nation. Normally, police just stop female drivers, question them and let them go after they sign a pledge not to drive again. But dozens of women have continued to take to the roads since June in a campaign to break the taboo. Making Tuesday’s sentence all the more upsetting to activists is that it came just two days after King Abdullah promised to protect women’s rights and decreed that women would be allowed to participate in municipal elections in 2015. Abdullah also promised to appoint women to a currently all-male advisory body known as the Shura Council. The mixed signals highlight the challenge for Abdullah, known as a reformer, in pushing gently for change without antagonizing the powerful clergy and a conservative

segment of the population. Abdullah said he had the backing of the official clerical council. But activists saw Tuesday’s sentencing as a retaliation of sorts from the hardline Saudi religious establishment that controls the courts and oversees the intrusive religious police. “Our king doesn’t deserve that,’’ said Sohila Zein el-Abydeen, a prominent female member of the governmental National Society for Human Rights. She burst into tears in a phone interview and said, “The verdict is shocking to me, but we were expecting this kind of reaction.” The driver, Shaima Jastaina, in her 30s, was found guilty of driving without permission, activist Samar Badawi said. The punishment is usually carried out within a month. It was not possible to reach Jastaina, but Badawi, in touch with Jastaina’s family, said she appealed the verdict. Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that bans women, both Saudi and foreign, from driving. The prohibition forces families to hire live-in drivers, and those who cannot afford the $300 to $400 a month for a driver must rely on male relatives to drive them to work, school, shopping or the doctor.

There are no written laws that restrict women from driving. Rather, the ban is rooted in conservative traditions and religious views that hold giving freedom of movement to women would make them vulnerable to sins. “How come women get flogged for driving while the maximum penalty for a traffic violation is a fine, not lashes?’’ Zein el-Abydeen said. “Even the Prophet (Muhammad’s) wives were riding camels and horses because these were the only means of transportation.’’ Since June, dozens of women have led a campaign to try to break the taboo and impose a new status quo. The campaign’s founder, Manal alSherif, who posted a video of herself driving on Facebook, was detained for more than 10 days. She was released after signing a pledge not to drive or speak to media. After the king’s announcement about voting rights for women, Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti Abdel Aziz Al Sheik blessed the move and said, “It’s for women’s good.’’ Asked if the sentencing will stop women from driving, Maha al-Qahtani, another female activist, said, “This is our right, whether they like it or not.’’

By Erica Werner Associated Press LOS ANGELES — President Barack Obama is heading to Denver to pitch his jobs plan in the city where he accepted the Democratic nomination. But as he’s acknowledged at fundraisers up and down the West Coast, this election isn’t like 2008. Obama told a star-studded Hollywood fundraiser Monday night that this time around people are weary, and the energy of 2008 when he was an exciting new face is going to have to be generated in a different way. He urged guests, including actors Eva Longoria, Danny DeVito and Jack Black, not to get tired now. “This is when we’re tested,” he said. Obama has held seven fundraisers over two days in Washington state and California in advance of an important fundraising deadline. Tuesday in Denver, he will tour a high school and then speak about the $450 billion jobs plan, mixing tax credits and public works spending, that he wants Congress to pass. With the economy stuck and unemployment high as the 2012

campaign heats up, Obama has been reminding supporters that he never told them governing would be easy. He’s also getting in some shots at the Republican presidential field. “I urge all of you to watch some of these Republican debates. It’s a different vision about who we are, who we stand for,” Obama told about 120 Hollywood supporters at Los Angeles’ Fig & Olive restaurant. Guests paid $17,900 each to attend. The American people want a “bold and generous” vision of America, Obama said, not the “cramped’’ one he said the Republicans are offering. “That’s what this election is about. It’s about values, it’s about character, it’s about who we are.’’ Republicans have panned Obama’s West Coast swing, criticizing the president for being more interested in saving his own job than creating new jobs for Americans. And Republican National Committee spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski said Obama was “treating the West Coast as an ATM for his campaign coffers as he makes his way toward the first billion-dollar campaign.’’

Republican candidates seek Trump stamp for approval By Beth Fouhy Associated Press NEW YORK — A visit with Donald Trump has become an important campaign stop for Republican presidential candidates. The celebrity real estate mogul opted out of his own bid for the GOP nomination. Now, the major candidates are seeking an audience with him. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is the latest to pay a visit. Trump hosted Romney Monday afternoon at Manhattan’s Trump Tower.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann have both met with Trump. He shared a pizza in Times Square last spring with Sarah Palin, who is still considering a presidential bid. Strategists say Trump’s tough, in-your-face warning of a declining nation resonated with voters as he considered entering the race. But he also damaged his reputation by reviving debunked questions about President Barack Obama’s citizenship.

Recovery aid withheld from Vermont victims By Michael Hill Associated Press

WATERBURY, Vt. — For disaster victims still rebuilding, the anxiety is exceeded only by anger at Congress for making federal recovery aid seem, to them, like a pawn in a political battle over government spending. A sharply divided Congress has repeatedly rejected a deal that included funding federal disaster assistance. That has stoked fears of no plan to continue aid for victims of recent

storms. On Monday, a vote in their favor seemed increasingly likely. There was also word that the money in fact might last through the new budget year, which begins Saturday. Still, people like 61-year-old Barbara Lewis of Philadelphia were dismayed that it was part of the argument at all. Her home was damaged by flooding. She says “politicians will play politics because it’s not their lives.”

5 Campus Center Construction Creates Confusion Thursday, September 29, 2011


Navigating around the construction inside, and outside, the Campus Center leaves students lost. By Mary Redstone Features Editor

Students who have been attending MCLA for years are mostly confident in their ability to navigate the Campus Center, even with so much construction making many routes inaccessable. Newer students however are not so lucky, because they do not know about the multitude of hallways and stairs off the beaten path that are needed to get to key locations in the Campus Center. “Being a freshmen makes navigating the campus difficult from the start,” said freshman Jacob Fennell. “With the added obstacles of closed paths, wooden walls, and caution tape, it’s nearly impossible to dictate where you are in the building.” One of the most debilitating

restrictions in the building is not even construction anymore. The changes made to the Centenial Room have made cutting through the building impossible. Now, since students must swipe their cards and deduct a meal in order to enter the room, they cannot simply cut through to reach the facilities on the other side. Currently, there is construction on the other side so one cannot cut through to the other side yet, anyway. “Trying to find the entrance to the gym was a work out alone because it was hidden by the construction,” said freshman Brendan Peltier. Senior Jandlyn Bentley has had her own troubles navigating through the construction, but when asked her opinion she gave some comical advice.

“Oh it’s rather simple,” said Bentley. “Enter the labyrinth through the top back-entrance gate, and meander your way down to the lagoon. You have to pay the ferryman a small fee in order to cross though. Once across, turn left and enter the chamber of the Minotaur. You must do battle with the creature, and if you should defeat him, he shall lead you safely the rest of the way.” Luckily, when verbal directions are not helpful enough, there are color-coded signs throughout each level directing students where to go. Green is for the Centeniel Room, yellow for the Book Store, and occasionally white for the ATM and laundry machines. Vice President of Administration and Finance James Stakenas said that while the signs are there to help guide students, they are

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

With much of the Amsler Campus Center under construction, students must navigate around blocked-off hallways and construction equipment.

Next Week in Features: Concert Ticket Prices and Why They Cost So Much

primarily there for safety, to ensure students do not walk onto the construction sites. Stakenas said there are certain entrances that are more desirable in reaching certain facilities. For example, when trying to reach the Book Store, he recommends using the entrance by Sullivan. Townhouse residents have two options when entering the building, but the best route to the Centenial Room is through the door in the lower Quad. Navigating around the outside of the Campus Center is becoming almost as difficult as navigating inside. The outdoor concrete stairs leading to the second floor of the building, by the entrance to Sullivan Lounge, are completely inaccessable and have been that way since the summer. While the entrance is still open, the removal of these stairs has removed a welltravelled shortcut from Hoosac Hall to the Quad. Formerly, Hoosac Hall residents were able to leave the dorm, travel past the mail room and through the patio, down the stairs, and directly into the Quad; alternately, students could even climb the concrete stairs and find themselves behind Murdock Hall and in front of Vennable Hall. Now, residents must use the paved path past the volleyball court and find themselves in front of Murdock Hall, then head down to the gates, down the stairs, and into the Quad. Or, if the weather is less-than-desirable, then students can use the same path, but cut through Vennable Hall, down three flights of stairs, and exit at the Quad. “The construction is an inconvenience for those of us in Hoosac,” said freshman Michael Kogut, “[because] it adds extra time onto walking to almost everywhere.” “Getting to class hasn’t really been too difficult,” said freshman

Abigail Egan, “but that’s probably because this is my first year on campus and I don’t know anything different. It must stink for upper classmen, because they know there are easier ways around, but are hindered by all the work being done.” Despite the confusion, many students are hopeful that the problems will be worth it in the end. “I know that once it’s all over, the school will look great,” said freshman Lily O’Neill, “but having to take all sorts of different routes around school can be a little annoying... I don’t know what it was like last year when there wasn’t construction…but it will be really nice once everything is done and I can actually take the easy routes that I haven’t been able to take yet this year.” “I highly appreciate all that is being renovated [or] built,” said Fennell. “I just wish this could happen faster so new students won’t have a tainted image of our wonderful campus [and] community.” “I have no complaints,” said freshman Tess Smith. “It will be worth it in the end. I don’t mind a little inconvenience, though I hear Hoosac residents have been more effected by it and they have my sympathy.” According to the MCLA Web site, construction on the Campus Center will continue until Dec. 1. Until then, students will not be able to use the shortcuts they had grown acustomed to and will have to learn to follow the signs and arrows placed around the building.

FINANCIAL AID ANNOUNCEMENT Financial Aid refunds will be occurring soon!!

Please check with the Financial Aid Office to make sure your paperwork is complete. Contact us in Eldridge Hall 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. You can also email us at or call us at 413-662-5219.

Don’t delay your refund!!

A&E 6 A ‘press’-ing summer for Jason Peabody Thursday, September 29, 2011

Senior arts management student gets a hands-on experience this summer managing Press art gallery on Main Street. By Nora Weiss

Press Gallery never presented a dull moment for Peabody, who always rode his bike to and from work for his usual ten-hour work day. “The night before the opening of a bigger exhibit,” Peabody remembers, “I was printing a bunch of pieces until 5:30 in the

Staff Writer

MCLA senior Jason Peabody sits behind the Photography Club table at his last MCLA Ice Cream Social and Activities Fair, chatting with underclassmen about dark rooms, film, and cameras. His four years at MCLA are coming to a close, but he has his eyes on the horizon. “My main goal is to pursue my own art,” Peabody explains amidst the empty ice cream bowls and scattered photographs. “I won’t ever stop working.” Work is exactly what Peabody did this summer. Peabody accepted a job as an Associate Gallery Manager for the local artisan exhibit Press Gallery in downtown North Adams. “The job opportunity was brought up in one of my classes,” Peabody recalls. “Originally, I didn’t actually receive the position. However, at a student art show about a week later I introduced myself to the professor associated with Press Gallery: Melanie Mowinski. Simply introducing myself to her got me the job in the end.” Peabody explains that Press

“My main goal is to pursue my own art... I won’t ever stop working.” Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Jason Peabody, senior arts management student, worked as an Associate Gallery Manager for Press Gallery this summer. Gallery doubles as both a gallery and an art project. By being a studio and a gallery, Press is intended to show the creative process and enable others to be creative themselves, says Peabody. “Press Gallery is meant to educate,” Peabody says, describing the mission of the gallery. “We display art prints of artists and in turn we give others the op-

portunity to learn how to create a print of their own work.” Assisting with art printing was only one of Peabody’s many roles as Press Gallery’s associate manager. He was a main contact within the gallery for incoming artists to exhibit their work, and also worked in marketing and sales. “I really did a bit of everything,” Peabody says.

What’s Crackin’ Gregory Scheckler

Remixed Messages 1990- 2011

MCLA gallery 51 Sept. 29- Oct.-23

Stephen Vitiello

Albany, NY

Oct. 3 7:30 p.m.

Seven new exhibits open tonight at DownStreet Art Press Release

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Now At Mass MoCA

Palace Theatre

morning. I went home to sleep for a few hours, and then rode my bike back the next morning to work from 11 until nine at night.” Even though he was tired, Peabody recalls that as one of the most successful days for Press Gallery because the establishment made its biggest sale of the summer. Someone ended up purchasing $637 in art prints, which made the day completely worth it for him. Peabody has stayed faithful to

Jane Phillbrick: The Expanded Field


Sep. 29-30 6-8 p.m.

MCLA Gallery 51

his arts management major because it keeps him involved in the arts, like Press Gallery. He cites the department as a growing program, but also one that is very involved. “Arts management at MCLA provides the most real life connections and opportunities,” Peabody says. “The school should keep this program going by providing the students with more professors. I’ve gotten the most hands-on experience because I am an arts management major.” Jason Peabody sees his time at Press Gallery as an ongoing learning experience that keeps him involved with the arts culture. His time in the classroom has been transferred into real life experiences through his job with Press; Peabody is currently writing a grant for the gallery. With his eyes on moving to Vermont to pursue his art and attend graduate school, Peabody sees opportunities for art in both profit and non-profit as something completely attainable because of his time with the MCLA Arts Management Department.

The final DownStreet Art of the season features seven new exhibition openings, including a milestone retrospective show by local artist Gregory Scheckler in MCLA Gallery 51 and a site-specific exhibition of ceramic objects, drawing, paint and video curated by Pittsfield’s Ferrin Gallery owner Leslie Ferrin in The Artery. DownStreet Art, which is free and open to the public, takes place tonight from 6 to 9 p.m. Live music will include songs by C. Ryder Cooley and spoken word with Sarah Falkner at XMALIA, 18 Holden St., at 7:30 p.m. Other music will happen throughout the event on Main Street. In MCLA Gallery 51, 51 Main St., North Adams artist Gregory Scheckler will unveil new allegorical paintings in what will be his 100th exhibit. “Remixed Messages: Artworks by Gregory Scheckler from 1990-2011” will feature drawings, paintings and photographs that span 21 years. Work created by Molly Hatch, Giselle Hicks and Sean Capone and presented courtesy of the Ferrin Gallery will be on exhibition in The Artery, 26 Holden St. A conversation with the artists will happen at 6:30 p.m., during the exhibition’s opening reception. In the back rooms of the MAYA IV gallery space, 49 Main St., MCLA Presents! will offer an evening of performance and interactive video and sound by performer and choreographer Polly Motley,

video artist Molly Davies, with music by composer Paul Geluso. Another performance will take the form of a rolling ice cream pushcart as artists Mark Mulherrin and Kristen Warming present “Art on Stick,” from 6 to 9 p.m. on the downtown sidewalks. Among the new exhibitions to open will be an “MCLA Alumni Art Show” at Adams Co-Operative Bank, 31 Eagle St., curated by Kristen Parker. An opening reception will be held, 5-6 p.m. At the North Adams Public Library, 74 Church St., 5-8 p.m., artist James Fissel will display his paintings. A self-taught artist, Fissel was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease 14 years ago. Since that time, his painting and art-making practice has grown increasingly prolific. In the NAACO Gallery, 33 Main St., “Quantum Oasis: The Work of Anna Rowinski and Diane Sullivan” will be on exhibit. Rowinski is a painter and Sullivan is a ceramic sculptor. A video work by Lonwabo Kilani in the PIP Postal Instant Press Gallery will be on view 24 hours. In the PRESS Gallery, 105 Main St., curator Melanie Mowinski will present “This One Goes to ELEVEN, Part 2.” The exhibit will feature pressure prints, linoleum prints, prints with moveable type, as well as book art and paste papers that have been created by the various artists of and those who have worked in the PRESS space over the summer.

Thursday, September 29, 2011



Fleet Foxes stellar at Mountain Park Seattle folk group shines with old and new songs. By Mary Redstone Features Editor

I’ve seen many concerts in my life, and before almost each one I have felt a small wave of apprehension; what if they don’t sound anything like what I’ve been hearing? What if they can’t deliver a good show? What if it just sounds like a carbon-copy of the recording I already have at home? After seeing Fleet Foxes at Mountain Park in Holyoke, Mass., I cannot believe I thought they might deliver anything less than a stellar performance. Not only was it enjoyable, some songs were performed in different arrangements to the album versions. Singer Robin Pecknold joked they had been playing the same set list for the whole tour; however, they played each song as though it was fresh off the album. Before Fleet Foxes took the stage, openers the Walkmen performed a 45 minute set that

Photo courtesy of

The Fleet Foxes performed Sunday at Mountain Park in Holyoke with opening act The Walkmen. spanned their entire eleven-year career. Pecknold told the audience during Fleet Foxes’ encore he watched the Walkmen backstage before their set, huddled in a group choosing from dozens of potential songs for their set list. Despite a very well-performed and entertaining set, they did not seem to catch the attention they deserved from the audience. This is perhaps due to the large difference in musical style and sound between the Walkmen and Fleet Foxes; the Walkmen prefer a raw, indie rock sound while Fleet Foxes are closer to indie-folk.

At 8 p.m., Fleet Foxes began their set with a handful of songs from their first, self-titled album. The hour-and-forty-minute set constantly bounced between songs from the first and second, newest album. A major crowd pleaser was “White Winter Hymnal” off the first album, where Pecknold invited the audience to sing with him. Reinforcing the idea of performing songs differently from how they are in the studio, “White Winter Hymnal” was joined seamlessly with “Ragged Wood,” a trick they used a few times dur-

Joan Soriano performs at Venable Gym

Photo by Cara Sheedy/Beacon Staff

Joan Soriano: The Duke of Bachata performs Saturday afternoon in Venable Gym. Soriano was originally scheduled to play in the Quad, but was moved indoors due to rain.

ing their set. The transitions were so smooth it took some audience members a few seconds to realize what happened. “Montezuma,” the opening track from their newest album Helplessness Blues, was one of the most astounding songs of the evening. Performed almost entirely a capella, Pecknold stood in the middle of the stage, bathed in white light, only occasionally striking a chord on his guitar behind the oohs and ahhs of the backing vocals. Fans of the band are already familiar of the intricate harmonies present on nearly every one of their songs. When heard live, these multi-layered vocals seemed to be more effective. Maybe it was their perfect replication of what was painstakingly recorded in the studio, or maybe it was hearing them over the sea of people and echo off the trees of the outdoor venue. Whatever the cause may be, hearing Fleet Foxes performing live is a very unique auditory experience. They seemed endlessly passionate, even when they broke from the soft harmonies to let Pecknold proclaim in a nearly broken voice, “sunlight over me no matter what I do,” from Helpless

Blues’ “The Shrine/An Argument.” Mountain Park was the best kind of venue to have seen a band like Fleet Foxes. Their sound already conjures up pastoral images of sweeping hills, dense forests, and lush farms. Hearing the band at nightfall, while sitting or standing on a hill of grass surrounded by trees, only enforced the audience’s immersion into these images. Close to 10 p.m., the band put down their instruments and stepped off the stage. After a few minutes of coaxing in the form of the audience’s claps and cheers, they returned. The encore began with a new song, introduced as something Pecknold had only written a few weeks ago. Titled “I Let You,” it was a song of a lost love that was both heart breaking and stunningly beautiful. The encore lasted for four songs and ended with the title track off the newest album, “Helplessness Blues.” If all previous songs were beautifully sung and lushly pastoral, “Helplessness Blues” took it all and amplified it. The audience was illuminated in a warm light as they sang, “if I had an orchard/ I’d work ‘till I’m sore.”

The ‘Courage to Rage’ fuels anger at current political systems By Tano Holmes Staff Writer

Triangular boards bearing extremely provocative posters cover the floor of a modern art gallery right out side of Downtown Heidelberg. Our tour guide explains in quick German the meanings of a few pieces that he feels most relevant to our student group. The exhibit is called “Mut Zur Wut” which translates to “Courage to Rage,” a call to people to be brave enough to be mad at our current system. One print shows a fully laden table with grapes hanging from it, reminiscent of ancient Rome with large letters exclaiming “Go West Go Waste.” Another piece shows a fist with the middle finger, but the finger is inverted – demonstrating as our tour guide informed us, that when you hate someone else you are hating yourself. There were more than 30 main posters as well as smaller pictures and each has a strong political or moral message, if you could decode it. Many of these posters are also posted throughout Heidelberg in the places generally occupied by advertisements, to simply raise awareness about crucial issues. In addition, there were some

posters that focused on politics, the most striking of which in my opinion, demonstrated the words justice and liberty (in Spanish) crossed out and the word “Security” written in the middle, a commentary on how many governments have consolidated control over their populations in the name of security. A couple examples of this are the Patriot Act, which is still in place even after 10 years have passed since Sept. 11, 2001, and we have had a change of presidents, or the British governments extreme use of video surveillance. The freedom of thoughts here in Heidelberg is one of the things I appreciate most about my study abroad experience. Last year as an Arts and Entertainment writer for The Beacon, I had the privilege to report on a number of quite wonderful art displays in and around North Adams. However, I have never seen such a collection of provocative posters that really forces the viewer to consider their place in a system that allows some to live so far above others. Speak your mind! Frieden und Lieben! Tano Holmes reports for The Beacon from Heidelberg, Germany.

A&E 8 FreshGrass: more than just bluegrass Thursday, September 29, 2011

Mass. MoCA’s latest music and arts festival is an entertainment triumph. By John Deming A&E Editor

The sky above Courtyard C was that eerie yet beautiful shade of pink, and the zebra styling’s of Sol LeWitt’s “Wall Drawing Retrospective” shined down from the windows above the stage. Sarah Jarosz wooed the crowd with her rendition of Paul Simon’s “For Emily wherever I may find her;” and not a person could speak. Taking it all in was a daunting task; it was far too perfect to miss a second. A strong start indeed and the start of an entire weekend of American musical perfection mixed with fresh contemporary art.

John Deming A&E Editor

Jungle Work

Day One:

Upon arriving at Mass. MoCA, you could feel the beginnings of a special weekend. The entirety of FreshGrass was tightly contained, as Courtyard C provided outdoor music action and new outdoor galleries were a short walk across the flood canal. This kept the evening as intimate and tight-knit as bluegrass should be. The multi-instrumental Sarah Jarosz was Saturday night’s opener, playing ranging styles, instruments, and tunes inspired by everything from Hurricane Katrina to Edgar Allan Poe. Her voice was flawless, angelic, and simple, setting itself apart from anyone who had come before her, floating out and captivating everyone. Alternating between the banjo, guitar, and mandolin, Jarosz played haunting southern bluegrass, with its roots firmly planted in her home state of Texas. Covers of the Decembrists and Paul Simon featured reworked arrangements to fit her style, but it was her show ending, crowd engaging, clap/sing-along rendition of Tom Waits’s “Come on up to the House” that became the highlight of her set. Jarosz truly set the standard for the weekend. As festivities moved inside to the Hunter Center, some gentlemen from Virginia came out and tore the roof off, with the greatest performance of the weekend. “It’s good to be back behind enemy lines,” declared Rob Bullington, the Hackensaw Boys mandolin picker. They sure looked right at home on that stage; from start to finish it was a take-no-prisoner Confederate Stomp, screamed from under Garth Hudson style beards featuring the finest fiddle playing seen this side of the Mason Dixon Line. They were like an aggressive and energetic Old Crow Medicine Show, with the extraordinary origi-

Photo by Brian McGrath/Beacon Staff

Del McCoury performs at FreshGrass bluegrass + art festival at Mass MoCA nality that Bluegrass can always guarantee, often sounding like music that one might have heard in Robert E. Lee’s army camps. Fiddle player Ferd Moyse’s fired up style of raw southern fiddling mixed with Bullington playing the fastest mandolin you’ve ever seen. Banjo picker Shawn Galbraith, guitarist Ward Harrison, and stand-up bassist Jesse Fisk kept pace with a foundation like a freight train, flying over every tune, while the simply insane coffee-can and washboard contraption drums of Justin Neuhardt, provided quick chicken scratch beats. This colorful cast of southern gentlemen had no mercy on their instruments, breaking and replacing strings whenever necessary, then changing tempo whenever the heck they felt like it. No doubt, these boys from Virginia stole the weekend with the most honestly Appalachian music in America. The Infamous Stringdusters were the unlucky band that had to follow the Hackensaw Boys, but once again disappointment was not a possibility at FreshGrass. Those Stringdusters came out in full force, with such perfectly constructed songs they were nothing less than a new classification “lab grass.” The Stringdusters inclusion of a constant slide guitar, and blazing speed fiddle work, was just another example of how at every turn, the bands of FreshGrass each had something to set themselves apart from each other, with individual formulas of Bluegrass. The Stringdusters are such a focused group

Photo by Brian McGrath/Beacon Staff

Sarah Jarosz performs in courtyard C to open FreshGrass.

that at times they crowd into a circle and get lost in their individual solos as the rest look on. These gentlemen ended Night 1 with a stellar sendoff.

Day Two:

Photo by Brian McGrath/Beacon Staff

Jeff Austin of YMSB. The second day of FreshGrass provided ample time to check out the new art in expanding portions of Mass. MoCA’s campus. As Dave Mayfield played an energetic fever of a show, folks played on huge swings under the Route 2 overpass and climbed Jill Philbrick’s “The Expanded Field.” Michael Oatman’s “All Utopias Fall” was a climb to new heights as one hiked through the daunting boiler room of an old factory building to a landing where a 1970’s airstream trailer crashed with its parachutes tangled on the rusty mechanics of a past industrial era – a great parallel for anyone who knows their North Adams history. The headliners of FreshGrass featured both a legend and the new generation. Grand Ole Opry alumni and an original part of Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Boys, Del McCoury brought his band (featuring two of his sons) and ripped through the classic Bluegrass form, staying true to the historic value McCoury’s voice carries with it. His high pitch crowing presents that homey grass sound, singing about murder, love, motorcycles, and Red-Headed women. He took requests, delighted the audience with his warm demeanor, and played “Orange Blossom” special

in competition with a passing train. Watching Del McCoury play was like getting an American music history lesson, as he ripped through “Nashville Cats,” and “1952 Vincent Black Lightning,” then told a story about playing with Earl Scruggs, Bill Monroe, and all the legends of Bluegrass. Dressed in suits in the hot afternoon, Del and his band didn’t sweat it; instead they represented their style with an old school grace and brilliance that you scarcely find in American music anymore. As the sun set, Yonder Mountain String Band rose up, playing a heart-stopping set to bring it home. Abundant banjo, guitar, mandolin, and fiddle solos filled each song. Jeff Austin’s mandolin often seemed to break speed and sound barriers as he hit the highest notes he could at every turn. Yonder Mountain has a fresh and youthful sound and style that shows there is a future to this classic and often ignored form. Led by Austin, this fantastic cast of pickers each provided consistently complex solos, breakdowns, and ballads. Being a Bluegrass/jam band known for transcending musical boundaries and playing smart and very specific covers, Yonder Mountain broke down any barrier existing between Bluegrass and The Beatles. As bassist Ben Kaufmann snuck a creepy bass line in and Austin’s mandolin tip-toed along, Darol’s angry fiddle squeaked out a note or two. No one really knew where it was headed, but from “Here come old flattop” the crowd erupted in awe as “Come Together” was blown apart and re-assembled as a nasty bluegrass stomp. Yonder Mountain’s songs are unpredictable and complex, but with ease they fly along as Austin’s endless supply of energy and comedic expression seems to draw out the best in everyone on stage. Mass. MoCA is becoming “the festival museum,” but the more the merrier. Between Solid Sound and FreshGrass, North Adams is becoming a premier spot to hear unique and amazing music.

I took a trip to New York a few years ago to visit a friend, on the way my train got delayed for 5 hours, and as I sat there impatiently on the track, one thing kept me sane: R.E.M.’s album “Around the Sun.” Admittedly a weird choice – it’s considered one of their worst albums – but something about it resonated with me and my state that night stuck on that train just outside of the Big Apple. R.E.M. disbanded last week, and while I was saddened to hear that they may never play again, I, like many other R.E.M. fans, was also fairly happy with this decision. R.E.M. has for 30 years been a staple of what quality American music can and will be, and at no point did this band surrender their musical principles for a popular sound to sell records. R.E.M. instead hand-crafted each album into a fresh and relevant sound that stayed socially relevant and politically scrutinizing as needed. This was a band that went out on their own terms when they felt they had exhausted their possible musical avenues. What ultimately separates R.E.M. from much of music is they did not do what was “fashionable” in order to sell records. Instead they became bestsellers on their own format of musical honesty and innovation. They were, in essence, the Godfathers of Indie-Rock Since coming together in Athens, Georgia in 1980, Michael Stipe, Mike Mills, Peter Buck, and Bill Berry ruled the American Alt-rock scene for 30 years,. They released 15 studio albums, including Automatic for the People, one of the few definitive musical triumphs of the 1990’s. I was lucky enough to immerse myself in R.E.M. for many years. After first hearing “Bang and Blame” when I was just a little Jack, I always carried a torch for these guys. As my collection grew, I was enthralled with their raw production of 1986’s “Life’s Rich Pageant,” to the rough feedback of 1995’s “Monster,” and the passion of their live material. Seeing R.E.M. live is one of the most energetic and thrilling concert experiences one can encounter. Having survived 30 years in the American music scene, R.E.M. transcended many age groups; I for one have passed them on to my little brother Quintin (or Goose as the family refers to him). Every time I drive him somewhere I have no option but to have a sing-along of “Don’t go back to Rockville.” It’s the Goose’s favorite song. In the summer of 2010, walking into The Mohawk Tavern during the first Solid Sound Festival, I sat down with my friend Ben and noticed a familiar face. There was no way I could pass up the chance, and upon introducing myself, Mike Mills stood there and had a beer with me. For the life of me I don’t remember our conversation, but I got to thank R.E.M.’s bassist for all he did for my life, my understanding of music, and for the body of work that he and his bandmates had given the world. It’s the end of R.E.M. as we know it, but I feel fine...


Thursday, October 6, 2011


Women’s tennis wins first of season By Kaitland Hager Sports Writer It’s been a tough run for the women’s tennis team this fall, but after their first season win against Johnson State on Sunday, things are picking up. It’s a victory long overdue. “This was a big match for us because it reassured us that we are improving and capable of more than we think,” senior Carrie Richards said. “This was the first time we won 9-0, not letting Johnson get any games.” No Johnson player came too close to winning a game in the singles or double matches. Richards won 8-1 and junior Shelby Ferriere swept 8-0. Sophomore Hannah Marshman posted a notable 8-5 win as well. The closest a Johnson player cameto a victory in singles matches,was beaten back by freshman Sarah Murphy who commanded the match with a final score of 8-3. In the doubles matches, partners Richards-Murphy, Laura Laureano-Jessica Fratus and Dary Burgos-Marshman all won their matches 8-4 against Johnson’s top double partners. “I knew it would be a good match,” Richards said. “Our team

Photo by William Casey/Beacon Staff Conditions couldn’t have been worse for the tennis team’s home games this weekend. has beaten them in past seasons, so it would come down to how we played that day.” That attitude has been building over the last month. Despite a slow start, the Blazers held strong and came together as a team to secure a victory. “I think our season is beginning

to peak player-wise,” senior Jessica Fratus said. “Our skills are coming back and we are finally hitting the ball the way we should be.” Junior Laura Laureano was optimistic, as well. “We are playing better this year, definitely,” she said.

In previous matches against Lyndon State College and St. Joseph, the team has put together the small details of play. The little things such as moving around the court, successful volleys, and the overhead serve finally came together on Sunday to propel the Blazers to an almost flawless vic-

tory. The road has still been a long one and the Blazers fought every step of the way. Due to the increase of rain in the 2011 fall season, actual court practices have been limited. “Before our first match against Bay Path College, we only had one organized practice,” said Richards. When rain forced the Blazers indoors, they worked out during their practice slots, building stamina and muscle. It took some time for that to translate to the court. Fratus outlined a typical court practice: running laps, forehands and backhands, and technical skill drills. Richards added that practices include positioning, especially with those players who are in doubles matches. Occasionally they play against each other to see who should move up in the lineup. “Coach Mia Fabrizio makes us sweat until we can’t anymore, which is good because it builds up our resistance to play in matches,” Laureano added. With the increase in rain, the players focused less on hitting, which set them back at the start TENNIS, continued on page 11

Rain didn’t stop annual 5K race Sunday saw North Adams play host to the 23rd annual Greylock Federal 5K Fall Classic. By Brendan Foley Sports Editor Torrential downpours on Saturday had left the roads and sidewalks slick, and as Sunday morning passed, clouds covered almost the entire sky; only the barest slivers of blue sky and sun peaking out from behind. A bad day for a parade maybe, but for the runners of the annual Greylock Federal’s 5K Fall Classic, conditions couldn’t be any better. This Sunday marked the twentythird time the race has been run, always in conjunction with the Fall Foliage Parade. According to race information, the race is devoted to sponsoring classroom programs of the North Adams Transcript. Because of proceeds from race registration, the Transcript is able to provide free papers and e-papers to any grade K-12. A total of 177 registered to run, with many members of the student body and faculty of MCLA present. At 12:30 p.m., the racers took off from the memorial on Main Street, on what has been measured to be a 3.1 mile loop that finished with a chute at the Greylock Federal Credit Union on Main Street. Six of the eight members of the newly formed women’s cross country team were front and center during the race. After finishing, the girls stood off to the side talking and drinking water, while coach Rob Col-

antuono scurried from timekeeper to timekeeper looking at slips to figure out the official times of the team members. “We’ve started closing the gap between our 1st and 4th runners,” Colantuono explained. “With cross country, that’s what’s important is getting your top five across the finish line.” Colantuono was quick to write off any time discrepancies on the length of the course, which he believed was longer than what has been officially stated, something he has brought up to racing officials. The race was won by Tim Vanorden with a time of 16.32. The professional runner has achieved a fair degree of visibility in athletic circles as the proprietor of the “Running Raw” diet system. The 43-year-old Bennington, VT. native has lived on a raw, vegan diet since 2005. Vanorden maintains a Website devoted to chronicling his experiences on the diet and has numerous videos on Youtube. In June, Vanorden won his fifth USA Master’s Trail Running title, finishing a 13.1 mile course in 1.18.45. The winning women’s time went to Michelle Kroboth, finishing with a final time of 19.59. After the last racer made it across the finish line, officials hurriedly took apart the chute and moved the racers into the office complex of 85 Main Street. In the main hall of the building the race planners had set out baskets of bananas,

Photo by Dennise Carranza/Beacon Staff

A brief moment of sun livened up the Fall Foliage Parade this past Sunday. apples, muffins, juices, as well as many snacks such as Cheetos. Congratulations were extended to all, and special trophies and medals were handed out to the top runners of the different age groups. The Trailblazers sat in a row along the wall with their food and trophies, cheering loudly whenever a member of the team won an award. As they discussed the race, it was unanimously agreed that running a flat, straight course like the one laid out for the Classic is preferable to running up the hills and

through the forests that crosscountry sometimes demands. The team also agreed that cloud coverage and wind were vastly superior to the blaring sun and humid days that the season started off with a month ago. Winner Vanorden spoke with fellow runners after the trophy ceremony, comparing various shoes. Having promptly broken his first place trophy shortly after receiving it, Vanorden spoke while holding the disjointed pieces in both arms and trying to figure out

the proper order for reassembling them. While screwing the various pieces back together, Vanorden explained how he had not even planned on participating in the race, instead spending his time and energy on training for a Masters race in Syracuse that was held on the same day as the Fall Classic. The race would have been very taxing, even for someone of Vanorden’s considerable skills and training. RACE, continued on page 11



Thursday, September 29, 2011

Women’s soccer moves up a notch Wehner’s shutout over the weekend helps improve Trailblazers MASCAC conference standings. By Brendan Foley Sports Editor

Photo courtesy

Jen Wehner flew to keep her shutout alive.

The women’s Trailblazers midseason upswing continued over the weekend when they tied Salem State in a scoreless double overtime. The team’s overall record moves to 1-5-1, with a MASCAC conference record of 0-1-1. The Trailblazers had begun the season on an extremely off note, losing all five of their first games. Between September 2 and 17, the team gave up fourteen goals, while only managing to score three times. The team’s luck turned on Tuesday, September 20th, when the Trailblazers went head-to-head with Lyndon State. With only four minutes left of play left in the first half, first year Lindsay Roy knocked the ball past the Lyndon State keeper. Trailblazers coach Deb Raber

gave much of the credit for the upswing to the young players. Due to injuries, the team has been forced to rely extensively on young players who have finally turned the corner. Raber said, “Right now the program is in the power of the youth.” On Saturday, the team traveled to Salem State for their second MASCAC game of the season. The Salem State offense dominated the proceedings, pummeling senior goaltender Jennifer Wehner with 27 shots on goal over the course of an afternoon, with 19 of those shots coming in the final 65-minutes. Comparatively, the Trailblazers only had two shots on net all game. Wehner stopped nineteen shots on net to achieve her second straight shut-out of the season. The Cooperstown native and two time first team All MASCAC has, in her past two seasons helped carry the team to an overall re-

cord of 23-7-6. “She’s a beast,” said Raber. She continued, “It’s tough to play up to that level because Jen is playing out her mind right now.” Raber asserted with confidence that Wehner is the best goalie in the conference, if not the region. The tie elevates the Trailblazers above Bridgewater State and Mass. Maritime in the MASCAC standings, both of whom are currently trailing the conference with records of 0-2. The Trailblazers 0-1-1 leaves them tied with Salem State. Fitchburg State, Westfield State and Worcester State lead the conference with 2-0 records. The Trailblazer played on Wednesday night in a nonconference game against Green Mountain. Their conference battle will continue on Saturday, October 1st when they face Mass. Maritime at 1 PM. Both games will be at home.

Golf team plays in rain Men’s Tennis The season is off to a mixed start as weather affects Williams Tournament. Now at MCLA

By Bobby Beauchesne Sports Writer

Golf is considered by some to be the most individual sport of them all. The game ultimately boils down to the player and the ball, with each shot equally as important as the last. A golf team, however, must rely on its individual parts to supply a complete team effort. One weak link may cost the team a stroke. A player can also lift the team to new heights with one amazing shot. The MCLA golf team is looking to build on its strong season last year which saw them place 1st in two tournaments. Last season also saw them tally up five top 10 finishes. The squad returns several key players who look to post even better scores than they did last season. The group is always poised to turn in a great team effort. In its first event of the season, the golf team traveled to Saratoga Springs, New York. They competed in the Skidmore Invitational held at Saratoga Springs National Golf Club. Pittsfield’s Shane Ortega carded rounds of 74 and 78 to finish at 152 for the weekend. This score earned Ortega 10th place in the tournament. Zach Grossman of Skidmore College took the individual title by shooting four under for the tournament. Freshman Joe Kezer made his collegiate debut for the Trailblazers and shot at 79 and 81 respectively to finish in 21st place. Also for the Blazers, Freshman John Ryan shot a 162 to finish 26th. The team competed through pouring rain and pelting wind at the MCLA Invitational held at Waubeeka Golf Links in Williamstown. While Elms College may

By Brendan Foley Sports Editor

Photo Courtesy of

Shane Ortega placed 13th at the Williams Invitational. have taken the team title, several Trailblazers played well even in the poor scoring conditions. Kezer posted the lowest individual score for MCLA, shooting a 78 for the tournament. Also for the Trailblazers, Jack Ryan shot an 80 while Adams native Sean Cota and Ortega both carded 82. For Elms, both Phil Rurak and Henry Fall shot a one over 72. These efforts were good enough to give MCLA a hard fought 2nd place finish. Most recently, MCLA competed against Williams College in the 36-hole Williams Invitational. The event was held over Saturday and Sunday at the Taconic Golf Club in Williamstown. The team was determined to try to learn from all its past mistakes and capitalize on all its successes. Ortega lead the way for the team, placing 13th individually. Nipping at his heels was freshman Joseph Keezer, who went 76-78 over the two days. Also making a strong show was

Sean Cota who shot a 79 on Sunday. Overall, the Trailblazers finished in 10th out of 16 teams. The Trailblazers will also compete in several important events this fall. On October 1st they will play in the ECAC Championships at Springfield Country Club. This will be a weekend tournament. The team will also have a chance to show what they can do on the big stage in the last tournament of the year, the New England Intercollegiate Golf Association Championships. This will take place on the weekend of October 15th. The Trailblazers are lead by David Bond, who has been at the helm since 2006. Under Bond, the Trailblazers have placed first in several events, including last year’s MCLA Invitational as well as the Westfield State Invitational. The Trailblazers also won the Westfield event in 2009. MCLA looks to build on past success as well as establish themselves as a Division III force.

In order to meet new Division III standards, MCLA has added two new teams to the athletic program. One was the women’s cross country team, whose head coach Rob Colantuono was profiled in last week’s edition of the Beacon. Men’s tennis was the second team added to the roster, with twenty-four year old Ecuadoran tennis pro Andres Lima was named head coach of the fledgling team. Lima moved to the States from Ecuador in 2005, having been ranked the 39th player in the entire country by the time he left. Lima has worked steadily at a variety of country and athletic clubs in the New England area since arriving in the States, before being referred to MCLA by a co-worker. Upon arriving at the campus, Lima was grateful to have a team ready to learn. He said, “All I was really hoping for was a group of committed guys ready to work and improve and I’m happy to say that’s exactly what I have.” He continued, “I think because we’re building the program here, as men’s tennis is a new addition to the athletic bill at MCLA, there are different expectations for everyone. I believe this team want to make a name for themselves, I believe the heaviest expectations we have place are on ourselves.” The tennis season will not begin in earnest until the spring,

so Lima and his players are treating this fall period as a chance to find a routine and pace. Lima also desires to use this time to form preliminary line-ups and doubles teams. When asked what he expects from his athletes, Lima’s demands were simple, but direct. “I expect them to want to learn, want to improve, want to work hard and want to have fun. These guys have already impressed me with their attitude and I’m excited to see where we can go from here.” More than anything, talking with Andres Lima conveys a strong sense of opportunity and excitement at being at the forefront of a burgeoning program. When asked about the responsibility of leading such a fresh team, he replied, “I like to think its more about an oppurtunity than responsibility. I have been coaching and instructing tennis for years and when you see someone, or in this case some group of people, who have the potential to be great, it’s inspring, and it reminds me of why I got into this business in the first place. We are going to get this program off to a great start.” He insisted that the ultimate goal for the team is to improve as a whole. The team has already played its first match on September 18th, which it lost at Union College in New York. They will play twice more this semester on October 5th and 7th, before breaking for the winter until they reconvene in March for the regular season.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Intramurals return to MCLA for new season Brendan Foley Sports Editor

What’s with the media circus? Over the summer the national sports media had a field day with the story of caddy Steve Williams, who had been fired by none other than Tiger Woods, only to come back and win a Major with a rival golfer. For days, if not weeks, no ESPN show was complete without a replay of Williams loudly declaring the victory the best win of his life, followed by constant dissection and analysis by whichever commentators had a show that day. And, at least in the early days of the story, there could be no question as to where the viewing audience’s sympathies should lie. Snobby, sex-addicted has-been Tiger Woods had kicked this poor working-man to the curb and was now reaping the karmic whirlwind. Never mind that Steve Williams had a long-standing reputation among some corners of the media as a loud-mouth bully. Never mind that as Tiger’s caddy. Williams made millions of dollars off of his employers victories and name. And never mind that it wasn’t Williams actually beating Tiger. The only thing shocking about Wiliams’ rise from nobody to news fixture to pariah is how unshocking the whole process was. We live in a culture that simply devours stories like Steve Williams’, and the narrative is more or less the same every time. You’re the best thing ever until you’re the worst thing ever. No inbetween. Lather, rinse repeat. But why do we simply accept that this is the way that things work? Why do we as a pop culture simply shrug our shoulders at the pattern? At one point do people start ignoring the attention whores and ready-made iconoclasts? When do we allow the process to continue unabated as it creates then destroys over and over again. Why is that we need to have manufactured villians on our TV screens when so many already populate the corners of our daily lives. Every single person suffers a million petty indignities every day, but instead of dealing with the problems, we seem to be conditioned to internalize and forget, to simply keep laboring with a smile. The only release people feel is when they turn towards intangible pop icons on their TV screens, whether they are watching the news or ET. Is that a good thing? A bad thing? The natural way that we have evolved to process antagonistic feelings?

One of the most popular programs at MCLA is intramural sports. This year, however, it is much harder for the program to advertise this because of the new cafeteria. The cafeteria was the place where most clubs and programs got their name out to students through tabling or having banners. Now because of the new layout and regulations of the new cafeteria, tabling, along with the hanging of posters, is no longer an option. Men’s soccer coach Adam Hildabrand directs the intramural program. When asked if it will be harder to get intramurals advertised without the cafeteria, he said, “ Without a doubt. We did a survey in spring, over 80% of the students that participated in IM’s found info in the cafe.” Intramural sports now tables in Bowman Hall on the second floor. At the table a student can pick up team rosters for whichever sport they’d like to participate in. Once the forms are filled out, the student can bring the roster back to the table. Co-supervisor Ryan Shewcuk agreed with Hildabrand, saying, “It’s going to be a lot harder getting the word around. The cafe was our biggest selling point.” When asked about last semester’s advertising compared to this fall’s Shewcuk said, “Well, it will be hard to top last year’s, but this year we have new workers and new sports coming.” While it is harder to advertise for intramurals, there are still



(As of Press Time)

Men’s Soccer Salem Framingham Westfield Bridgewater MCLA Worcester Maritime Fitchburg



6-2-0 2-4-1 6-1-1 3-3-1 3-5-1 2-4-1 0-6-0 0-8-0

2-0-0 2-0-0 1-0-1 1-0-1 0-1-1 0-1-1 0-2-0 0-2-0

Women’s Soccer

Photo by Austin Daniells/Beacon Archives

many students participating this year. Adam Hildabrand said, “We have over 20 people participating in cornhole and over 80 students participating in co-ed dodgeball for this first session.” Intramurals will also have other sports. “We will have traditional sports like indoor soccer, floor hockey, basketball, and volleyball. But we are also putting a heavy emphasis on non-traditional sports or tailgating sports like cornhole, kan jam, and dodgeball,” said Hildabrand. Other co-supervisor, John Ripepi said, “IMs are meant to be fun and a time to stay active, but there are some instances where games get competitive.” Shewcuk agreed with Ripepi about the competitive spirit, saying, “Although it is a friendly competition, I have seen argu-

ments happening on the court.” This year, intramurals has four supervisors, fewer than in years past: Ryan Shewcuk, John Ripepi, Olivia McMullen, and Gary D’Annunzio. When asked if they enjoy working for intramurals both Ripepi and Shewchuck seemed very content. Shewcuk said, “I love it. It’s a great chance to make new friends and spend more time with my best friend and coworker, Sim Sharp.” Ripepi is also happy to be working in intramural sports. “It’s a great job because I get to watch people compete and I’ve gotten to see some pretty interesting things over the years,” said Ripepi. Tabling will contine on the Quad level of Bowman for any who are interested in being a part of the Intramural program.

Floor hockey returns in the second half of the Intramural season.

Trailblazers still hope, despite losses

Fitchburg Westfield Worcester Framingham Salem MCLA Bridgewater Mass. Maritime



7-1-0 7-1-1 5-2-1 4-4-0 4-3-2 1-5-1 4-4-0 0-6-0

2-0-0 2-0-0 2-0-0 1-1-0 0-1-1 0-1-1 0-2-0 0-2-0

Volleyball All Worcester Bridgewater Westfield Framingham Mass. Maritime MCLA Salem


7-8 6-10 5-10 8-6 0-14 4-12 0-8

2-0 2-0 1-0 1-1 0-1 0-2 0-2

Men’s Soccer 10/1 @Mass. Maritime 4 p.m. 10/4 @Green Mountain, 4 p.m. 10/8 @Framingham, 4 p.m. Women’s Soccer 10/1 Mass. Maritime, 1 p.m. 10/4 @WNEC , 4 p.m. 10/6 Elms, 4 p.m.

SOCCER, continued from page 9

“I think our heart and emotion set us apart from everyone else,” he said. “We aren’t the biggest team but our heart makes up for it. Our team never gives up and we play with our emotions and we feed off that energy.” Hildabrand wants that energy and passion to resonate elsewhere, too. He wants his team to be successful on the field just as much as he wants them to be successful off it. By being top competitors in the classroom, it will guarantee them a higher level of success. The final step that will lead the Blazers to the MASCAC championship is the most important aspect of the game: the score. When it comes down to it, the heart and energy and determination need to be reflected on the scoreboard at the end of the game. “Scoring right now is one of our major issues,” D’Annunzio said. “When we put the ball in the net, then we will win more games.” Still, the team is determined to make a run for the MASCAC championships and will settle for nothing less. With the different components of their game in place, they have just as good a

Men’s Tennis 10/5 @Clark, 4 p.m. 10/7 @Springfield College, 4 p.m. Women’s Tennis 10/1 Sage,11 a.m. 10/2 @Johnson State, 1 p.m. 10/5 @Castleton, 4 p.m. Men/Women’s X-Country 10/8 @Westfield State 10/15 @WNEC 10/29 @UMASS Darmouth Women’s Volleyball

Photo by William Casey/Beacon Staff

Trailblazer Luke Davis lines up the next play. chance as any other team in the conference. The Men’s Trailblazer’s goal for a MASCAC championship seems even further away after its 3-1 Tuesday night loss to Castleton. While not a MASCAC conference game, the loss will still take

a toll on the moral and physical well-being of the team. The Trailblazers will play on Saturday at 4 p.m. against Mass. Maritime. The conference game will be played at Mass. Maritime.

10/1 vs. Potsdam State, 2 p.m. 10/1@Kean, 4 p.m. 10/6 @Green Mountain, 7 p.m. Rugby 10/9 Westfield State, TBA


Thursday, September 29, 2011


Bike sharing program progressing quickly By Nicole Knapp Staff Writer

The College is working on a bicycle share program that would benefit students, faculty, staff, and the environment. Although the program is not yet official, it is very close to being launched. The program would allow students and staff to go to a designated point (most likely the library) and check out a bike, helmet, and lock. Jason Brown, a junior and president of The Environuts club on campus, explained that checking out a bike would be like checking out a book. Caroline Scully, sustainability coordinator and chair of the Green Team, said the program would start small, with three to five bikes and more would be added as they begin to understand the system. “My personal hope is that we would start something this semester before the snow falls,” Scully said. “We’re working diligently on the steps to make it happen.” A bike share program would give faculty, staff, and students transportation to the downtown area. Scully said students might consider not having a car on campus, which could improve the parking situation and reduce our carbon output. The program has been talked about for at least five years and a lot of energy has gone into it. Brown said last year the bike share was just an idea and this year, it’s on paper. “I’m really amazed we got so much done over the summer with everything else that goes on on campus,” Brown said, before adding, “So close!”

This Week in Science Physicists clock a particle traveling faster than light By Ryan Barley

Special to The Beacon

Photo by Will Casey/Beacon Staff

Marc Latour enjoys riding a bicycle on a fine afternoon. Over the summer, Scully and other volunteers worked on a bike share proposal, met with other schools, and went to bike shops to look at possible models and to see what they’d need to purchase. Also last year, a core group of people, including administration, students, faculty, the Green Team, the Center for Service, and others, worked on addressing needs from different perspectives. The work still ahead of them includes maintenance, getting bikes, and serious considerations on safety. Liability is also a concern, but Scully said they are working on it and considering waiver drafts. “We’re close, but there’s still a good amount of grunt work,” Brown said. Bike share programs have been popping up everywhere. Mass. MoCA recently launched a bike rental program, called MASS

Transit, which allows visitors to reach various destinations easily. Scully said MCLA received information by looking at the way other schools have done the bike share program. Brown explained that they have been trying to make a hybrid program by combining the best out of different programs. “It’s a big step to know what seems to be a workable system for other places,” Scully said, adding they have spoken with Bennington College, Keene State, University of Vermont, and Vassar College. Additionally, volunteers also tried to make MCLA into a bikefriendly community. So far the amount of bike racks has been increased and more could potentially follow. Scully said people visiting campus could see the bikes and know that MCLA is interested in sustainability.

This week in science, particle physicists at the European Council for Nuclear Research (CERN) noticed something unusual in their data. Scientists working on the OPERA experiment (that’s the Oscillating Project with Emulsion-tRacking Apparatus) in Italy clocked a group of neutrinos—a sub-atomic particle—travelling faster than the speed of light, a feat that should be impossible according to the currently accepted theory of relativity proposed by Einstein in the early 1900’s. Despite this cosmic speed limit, a cluster of neutrinos was detected travelling roughly 724 kilometers (that’s roughly the distance from MCLA to Washington, D.C.) 60 nanoseconds faster than it would have taken light. This may not seem significant, but remember: nothing is supposed to be faster than light. Before you throw your physics textbooks out the window, remember there is cause for skepticism. One data point is not enough to throw out a century’s worth of science that did not break special relativity. CERN physicist Alvaro de Rujula told the New York Times: “If it is true, then we truly haven’t understood anything about anything… [it] looks too big to be true. The correct attitude is to ask oneself what went wrong.” OPERA is currently waiting for another particle accelerator: MINOS, an experiment based in Minnesota, to verify their data.

If the particles really are going faster than light, then this finding has vast consequences for the theory of relativity, which much of modern physics is based on. One hypothesis to explain this bizarre occurrence is these fasterthan-light neutrinos are slipping through a sort of “super-space,” travelling through some hidden spatial dimensions predicted by string theory. Joe Lykken, a physicist at Fermilab (the particle accelerator associated with MINOS), told the Times: “Special relativity only holds in flat space, so if there is a warped fifth dimension, it is possible that on other slices of it, the speed of light is different.” This violates one of special relativity’s starting assumptions: that the speed of light is the same for all observers. However, it is important to remember that until there is some verification from other experiments, this is just an anomaly; an incredibly exciting anomaly with awesome ramifications for the future of science and technology, but an anomaly all the same. In their paper published online in the e-Prints, the OPERA physicists remind the public that “the potentially great impact of the result motivates the continuation of our studies in order to investigate possible still unknown systematic effects that could explain the observed anomaly. We deliberately do not attempt any theoretical or phenomenological interpretation of the results.” But it does not hurt to be hopeful.

Bill McKibben lectures at Williams College The author and environmentalist presented his lecture “Global Warming: Reports from the Fight for a Working Planet.” By Chris Goodell Managing Editor

Author and environmentalist Bill McKibben called for action at Williams College last Tuesday night in an effort to combat the effects of global warming. In his lecture entitled “Global Warming: Reports from the Fight for a Working Planet,” McKibben highlighted the importance of addressing the issue on a global scale. “We’re dealing with the most important thing humans have ever dealt with,” he said. “This is not just a practical challenge; it’s a great ethical challenge.” McKibben cited failed political methods and poor international cooperation as some of the main reasons why the problems surrounding global warming have been allowed to persist for so long. “This is a global problem in a badly divided world,” he said. “Everybody on the planet insists on speaking their own language and it makes it very difficult to communicate.” McKibben said people have

known about global warming for at least 20 years, but oil companies hold too much influence over politicians for any real progress to be made. “We’ve had an unblemished, bipartisan, 20-year record of doing nothing in Washington,” he said. Junior Catt Chaput attended McKibben’s lecture and voiced her frustration at the lack of action and awareness surrounding global warming. “It makes me really mad that people don’t get it,” Chaput said. “But that anger actually motivates me.” McKibben cited some recent events as examples of the devastating effect that global warming can have. According to him, Hurricane Irene encountered some of the warmest waters the Atlantic Ocean had ever experienced. “It allowed [Irene] to pick up moisture like a sponge,” he said. “It dropped more rain than we’d ever seen. The natural world is going to continue giving us one teachable moment after another.” McKibben founded the environ-

mental group,, whose goals include spreading awareness about climate change and reducing carbon emissions. The group strives to reduce carbon levels in the atmosphere to 350 parts-per-million, a number many scientists believe to be a safe upper limit. Tar Sands oil pipeline McKibben was arrested in Washington, D.C. on Aug. 20 and spent two days in jail for protesting a proposed oil pipeline that would run from the Tar Sands in Alberta, Canada to the Gulf Coast. According to McKibben, these Tar Sands are the second largest carbon pools in the world behind the oil fields in Saudi Arabia. “They’ve wrecked the landscape where native people lived for a long time,” he said. “If we find the next Saudi Arabia and do the same thing, we’re fools and worse.” McKibben said 1,253 people were arrested over a two week period for protesting in front of the White House, a feat that he called the larg-

est civil disobedience action in the United States in 30 years. “We have to become more progressive and more confrontational,” he said. McKibben stated another civil disobedience action is scheduled for Nov. 6, when he hopes protesters will encircle the White House to dissuade President Obama from approving the pipeline. “It’s not that we’re going to stop global warming by stopping the pipeline,” McKibben said. “I’m not sure any of this is going to work. I don’t know if we’re going to win, but it will be good to fight shoulder to shoulder.” Senior Shelby Giaccarini appreciated that McKibben spoke so frankly about the issues at hand. “It was refreshing that he was that honest,” Giaccarini said. “I thought it was very honest [and] very uplifting,” added junior Jason Brown. “I left and I felt motivated.” According to McKibben, President Obama will make his decision on the pipeline within 90 days.

Photo by Chris Goodell/Beacon Staff

Bill McKibben addresses the crowd at Williams College.

Just some facts: •The ocean is 30% more acidic than it was before the wide use of fossil fuels •19 nations set temperature records in 2010 •Droughts in Russia in 2010 caused wheat and corn prices to increase 70% •The United States produces 40% of the carbon in the atmosphere •The atmosphere is 4% moister than it was 40 years ago

Campus Comment

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Do you think Public Safety should be armed? The Beacon “I think the new cafeteria looks nice but I would rather have the same café with better food.” - Sara Avellar, 2013

“I like the cafeteria itself but I don’t like how I can’t take my lunch to my room.” - Ashley-Jean Franco, 2012

The Beacon is published Thursdays during the academic year and is distributed free to the College community. The Beacon is funded by the Student Government Association, the English/Communications department and from ad revenues. Contact information: News desk number: 413-662-5535 Business number: 413-662-5404 E-mail: Web site: Office: Mark Hopkins Hall, room 111

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“I like the cafeteria but it lacks variety.” - Georgia Costigan, 2014

“It’s alright, it seems smaller even after they added new seating.” - James Gillis, 2014

Editorials Policy Unsigned editorials that appear on these pages reflect the views of The Beacon’s editorial board. Signed columns and commentaries that appear on these pages reflect the views of the writers. Letters Policy The Beacon welcomes Letters to the Editor. Deadline is noon on Mondays for that week’s newspaper. Letters should be kept to 500 words or less and are subject to editing for grammar and content. The Beacon will not publish anonymous or libelous letters.

“There are no more chicken tenders, I’m furious.” - Jamal Brown, 2012

“It looks like a legitimate cafeteria but being a vegetarian, somedays I am forced to eat salad and cookies.” - Emily Hayden, 2014

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Compiled by Brian McGrath

Ice Cream Social and Activity Fair

Editor-in-Chief John Durkan

Photo Editor Cara Sheedy

Managing Editor Chris Goodell

Copy Chief Ed Damon

Senior News Editor Skyla Seamans

Business Manager Tatyana Gorski

Sports Editor Brendan Foley

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Nicole Knapp Andrew Hodgson Jessica Gamari Tano Holmes Robert Beauchesne Kaitland Hager Kayla Koumjian Nora Weiss

Dennise Carranza Brian McGrath William Casey

Copy Editors

Photos by Dennise Carranza/Beacon Staff

(Left) Bernadette Lupo, coordinator of marketing and communications, tops off a student’s ice cream with caramel fudge. (Right) The Beta Lambda girls pose for a shot at their table during the Ice Cream Social and Activity Fair on Sept. 22. Traffic from students and faculty steadily flowed through the fair, which was moved to Venable Gym due to the rain, throughout the afternoon.

Jessica Wright Megan Cooney Kristen Rubano


Ariana Tourangeau Bruce Morrison Cartoonist

Aurora Cooper Design Editor

Stephen Kilduff Ad Reps


Jenifer Augur Paul LeSage Gillian Jones

Liroy Ozinci Jacob McCall Aaron Crawford Dylan Glaser

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Submit a Letter to the Editor to MCLA Beacon Mailbox on FirstClass or to Letters can be up to 500 words. See our policies on the right for more information.


Thursday, September 29, 2011




We need some A bike friendly substance, please campus? Finally

John Durkan Editor-in-Chief

If the Board of Trustees meeting proved anything last night, it’s that we might be in limbo on this firearm issue until the Nov. 16 community meeting. Limbo won’t convince anyone that we need this. The general consensus that guns kill things and the concerns around the guns killing the wrong people or being a drop cost won’t go away by simple comparisons to other state schools and

fearing the unlikely. Nothing new came out of the meeting. Director of Public Safety Joseph Charon is running out of time to convince people who are on the fence to jump to support the decision. He needs something before that meeting or else he’ll never get the community support to make this a smooth transition. First and foremost, there needs to be a physical report, open to the community. It’s no secret this is a hard task to convince a community that’s rightfully convinced that it’s safe. But you can make all the brief PowerPoint presentations in the world and re-iterate practically the same message repeatedly, but you will never convince anyone that we need this without a physical, detailed, lengthy, written report. We are a very educated community, a community of pro-

fessors, students and critical thinkers. We simply want – or rather need – more substance. A $25,000 initial cost and $6,000, currently, for maintaining a program that many feel unnecessary, considering the proximity of the North Adams Police Department along with the aforementioned safe community, is an expensive cost. Of course, if you can convince us by Nov. 16 that this cost is worth it, then the $31,000 won’t be so bad. A worst-case scenario doesn’t scare us. A society that rejects fear as a reason to do anything is a strong-willed society. We know Charon’s heart is in the right place for the community. It’s clear he properly researched how to implement the firearms. However, there is no research so far convincing us that we’re unsafe.

College should answer environmental call

Chris Goodell

Managing Editor When I was given the assignment to cover Bill McKibben’s global warming lecture at Williams College, I wasn’t particularly thrilled. Just another speaker I’ve never heard of telling me things I’ve heard a thousand times before, I thought. But such is life in the world of journalism, so I grabbed a pen and notebook and was on my way. Belying his unimposing looks, McKibben was anything but dull. Candid and charismatic, he spoke about some of the ways the world

is being adversely affected by global warming, both financially and climatologically. What set McKibben apart from other speakers, however, was the sense of desperation in his voice, an almost pleading call to take action before it’s too late. The good news is that MCLA has the opportunity to answer that call. On Nov. 6, exactly one year before the next presidential election, a rally is scheduled in Washington, D.C. to encircle the White House in protest of a proposed oil pipeline which, if approved, would run from the Tar Sands of Alberta, Canada to the Gulf Coast. It would be a great statement if MCLA were to partake in organizing a trip to this rally. With groups such as the Green Team and the Environuts, in addition to the College’s strong environmental science department, MCLA has a prominent environmental presence. You’d be hard-pressed to walk down any hallway on campus without going past a recycling bin,

and the implementation of solar panels further promotes MCLA’s environmental initiative. This cause is no less important. According to McKibben, the building of the 1700-mile pipeline could significantly harm the environment as it cuts through America’s heartland. Not to mention the $7-billion project perpetuates an already problematic issue - the burning of fossil fuels. This is money that could be better spent invested in alternative energy sources. This cause requires a large number of people in order to send a strong message to President Obama. In speaking with others who attended McKibben’s lecture, it seems that there is no shortage of interested students. The College could easily send a bus full of students to Washington, even by charging a small fee. A strong MCLA presence at the rally would be a great statement by the College and an even better contribution for the cause.

Well, well, well…it looks as though MCLA and North Adams are finally stepping up their bicycle game. Just a couple years back the Berkshires Towers downgraded its bicycle storage from a relatively efficient overhang in front of the old entrance – which most of the student body by now has forgotten about – to a barely excusable bike cover that, with the right rain angle, leaves half of the bike exposed. And now, better late than never, Charlotte Degen, the Dean of Students, announced the school’s plans on Tuesday night at the Board of Trustees meeting that providing covered bicycle storage is in the future for MCLA. Finally, the endless season of watching bikes rust might turn into ancient MCLA history. (On the Berkshire Tower note: the bicycle storage was just perhaps a small detail missed. The renovated inside still holds up as quite an improvement – unless you were once a fan of the outdoor patio, which served as a wonderful, fresh-air hangout spot during the early fall and late spring. It’s all about preference, really. And all those old fans must not live there any more; after all, fall 2007 seems like ancient history now. But I digress…) Kudos to Caroline Scully, the coordinator and chair of the Green Team and the coordinator of the Berkshire Environmental Resource Center, for pushing the bike share program into the conversation of the many changes at MCLA. Until this se-

mester, every mention of a bike share program was merely just a seemingly hopeless mention (oh the redundancy, just like every previous mention). For once, as SGA Senator Jason Brown said, the plan’s on paper. The recent Mass. MoCA bike share program also deserves praise for perhaps starting and quite possibly encouraging MCLA to catch up. Finally, MCLA has an opportunity to live up to its “Going Green” initiative. A bike-friendly future definitely helps the cause,

“Finally, the endless season of watching bikes rust might turn into ancient MCLA history.” and as Scully said, the campus can really cut down on its carbon footprint by encouraging an easy-to-use bike share system. With MCLA in the picture, perhaps North Adams can add bike lanes to Ashland, Church and Main streets and further encourage a bike-friendly community. Any change is possible with MCLA’s hand involved. And although Church Street may feel steep, the MCLA area and downtown are relatively flat. As long as we, as students, respectfully use this hopefully soon-to-come program, we can watch our community turn into a very bicycle-friendly city.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk Sunday, Oct. 16, 2011 Registration: 7 a.m., Starts: 9 a.m. Lee Premium Outlets, 17 Premium Outlets Boulevard, Lee, MA For more information, contact: Samantha Bergman or Stephanie Bush on FirstClasss

Restaurant Review

Public Eat & Drink: Cheap and tasty Nora Weiss Staff Writer

Do you have five bucks in your pocket? You’re doing better than some. Take all that money and spend it on Holden Street. Say goodbye to Taylor’s and a big “Hello!” to Public Eat & Drink, North Adams’ new place to be; a

casual polished place, according to young owner Jared Decoteau. “I wanted to create a social and affordable spot for North Adams,” Decoteau expressed. “The main goal of Public is to bring in all different walks of life; I wanted to create something in the middle.” Having worked for a number of years in the restaurant business, Decoteau saw opportunity with the closing of Taylor’s, the previous eatery at 34 Holden St. Now that Public has obtained that address, Decoteau aims to create an atmosphere for everyone to enjoy. “I saw college students and 60 year olds here this weekend,” De-

coteau recalled of Public’s first major weekend. “We’ve been open since the Sept. 18 and all kinds of people have been here.” Besides presenting a relaxed, yet stylish atmosphere with art curated by North Adams Co-Op, Public offers about 11 craft beers on tap and affordable restaurant food. The menu is diverse with countless vegetarian friendlyoptions, as well as well-priced burgers and steaks. The Pork Steak Strip is under $15 and the Mac’N’Cheese is covered in smoked gouda cheese. “When I created the menu, I wanted everything to be affordable,” explained Decoteau, who recommended the falafel and

the fish tacos. He also added that certain food and drink will rotate seasonally, such as the apple crisp and drinks with ingredients like cinnamon or pumpkin. Decoteau wants to establish a connection with MCLA students, saying that Public will not only be open past midnight, but feature a late night menu and fully stocked bar. “We’re hosting the DownStreet Art after-party here next week,” Decoteau said. “We also will have trivia every Monday night. We’re working on getting live bands to play every now and then.” Decoteau mentioned that Public will soon have a website with a social calendar up and running

soon. MCLA senior Adam Larson recalled his night at Public’s first trivia event as a good way to start the week. “My friends and I spent $25 on food for all five of us,” Larson said. “Plus, trivia was a great time and the food was fantastic. Everyone was really friendly and the setting was laid back and chill.” Tuesday is the only day of rest for the staff at Public; the eatery is open for dinner at 5 p.m. Find “Public Eat & Drink” on Facebook to get the menu, hours, and event updates. Still have that $5? Awesome. Your laundry can wait.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

For Fun



Aries: March 21-April 19 Get started on something new today – it could be almost anything, as long as you’re working as part of a team. You may be leading or following, but together, you’re quite strong! Taurus: April 20-May 20 Get involved in something artistic – you need to let your creative energy out today! You may be finger painting or writing a song, but somehow, your deepest soul is sure to come to the surface. Gemini: May 21-June 21 You feel like rushing through your day – and why not? Start as many new projects as you can, as with your good energy, at least a few of them are sure to take off. Someone else can clean up! Cancer: June 22-July22 Life isn’t working out quite as you’d like it to right now, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to give up! Just ride this phase out and things should be much more to your liking in the near future. Leo: July 23-August 22 You need to get out there and mix it up romantically – which could mean a single’s night out or a date night with your long-term partner. Whatever you do, make it special! You’re on fire tonight.

By Aurora Cooper

Presidential Word Search


Virgo: August 23-Sept. 22 You can’t make up your mind today – but that’s just fine! Make sure that your energy is directed toward something positive, so that when you finally do make the call, you’re headed in the right direction. Libra: Sept. 23-Oct. 22 Your sweet, romantic side is out today – so make the most of it! Maybe you want to say hello to your partner with a splashy gift, or maybe you want to impress that new hottie with something special. Scorpio: Oct. 23-Nov. 21 Ideas are meant to be shared on a day like today, so don’t hold anything in! You may find that your hottest notions actually get stronger thanks to the group’s playful back-and-forth. Sagittarius: Nov. 22-Dec. 21 You’ve got the whole plan in mind today as you seek out new ways to get the edge – your brain can take care of all the details, no problem, but it’s a good time to enlist support from others. Capricorn: Dec. 22-Jan. 19 You are working hard today – even if it’s a day off for you – but that doesn’t mean that you can neglect your social life. In fact, if you try to brush anyone off, it might come back to haunt you later. Aquarius: Jan. 20-Feb. 18 You need to deal with something that only you know how to handle – in fact, you may be the only one who even recognizes it as a problem. The good part is that your energy is just right for solving it. Pisces: Feb. 19-March 20 You are enmeshed with others in a deep web of interconnections – but sometimes, you focus too much on how much you have to put up with. Turn it around and consider what you get in return! Horoscopes courtesy of


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Photo Essay

Ben Kaufmann of Yonder Mountain String Band prepares himself before its headlining performance in the courtyard Sunday.

FreshGrass takes over MoCA!

Ward Harrison plays guitar in The Hackensaw Boys.

By Brian McGrath Fred Moyse of The Hackensaw Boys tips his cap after performing in the Hunter center Saturday night.

Fiske of plays the upright bass Saturday night.

David Mayfield sings in the courtyard sunday afternoon.

Jesse Fiske of The Hackensaw Boys plays the harmonica Saturday night.

September 29, 2011 - Fall '11 Issue 2  
September 29, 2011 - Fall '11 Issue 2  

The student run newspaper at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, Massachusetts.