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The Cluster

Mercer University

April 28, 2011

Volume V l XCIII

Issue 15

Trustees approve increase in tuition Compiled from Cluster Staff reports

Undergraduate students can expect to pay almost $900 more in tuition next year under a new budget plan adopted by Mercer’s board of trustees Friday. During their annual meeting in Macon, the trustees approved a $193.4 million operating budget for the 20112012 academic year. That’s an $8 million, or 4.3 percent, increase from current budget levels. To help cover the university’s additional operating costs, the newly approved budget also calls for a 2.92 percent increase in undergraduate tuition from $30,360 to $31,246, excluding room and board and living expenses. While Mercer’s undergraduate tuition has been steadily rising in recent years, this year’s increase is less than the 3.48 increase that took place last year and is roughly on par with the 2.9 percent increase enacted in 2009. All three of those increases are about half as much as those that took place between 2006 and 2008, when tuition shot up at a rate of around 6 to 7 percent annually. Most graduate and professional programs will experience slightly larger increases of between 3 percent and 5.3 percent.

“The economy, while improving, still poses challenges for many of our students...” William Underwood, University President


Tuition will not increase for undergraduate programs for working adults. President William D. Underwood said the university is finding ways to operate more efficiently and keep tuition increases to a minimum as many families continue to grapple with the effects of the 2008 economic downturn. “The economy, while improving, still poses challenges for many of our students and their families. We must remain sensitive to those challenges while finding innovative ways to continue delivering the high-quality programs and services that our students deserve and expect,” Underwood said.

ABOVE: Parachute Musical performs to a lively crowd at Bearstock. Although the headliners did not come onstage until after dark, bands played in Tattnall Square Park starting at noon.

LEFT: Sean Foreman of 3OH!3 excites the crowd at Bearstock. 3OH!3, along with Roscoe Dash, was a headliner at the concert. They are best known for their hit “Don’t Trust Me,” which reached number seven on the Billboard Hot 100.

Mercer Village to open new restaurants in fall By Rebecca Payne Around Campus Editor

BELOW: Mercer freshman Alden Bennett, a.k.a. “DjPharmer,” performs at Bearstock. Bennett has worked with DSEL Promotions throughout the year and performs at local nightclub establishments like Asylum.

When students return to campus for the fall semester they are going to have a variety of food to choose from in Mercer Village. Both Margaritas Mexican Grill and Fountain of Juice are currently under construction. The Rodriguez family founded Margarita’s Mexican Grill and has been serving the Middle Georgia area since 1988. The chain currently has three locations in Macon and one in Milledgeville. Brad Cork, an in-law of the family, will be overseeing the Mercer Village location with his wife, Valerie. Cork said, “This will be a smaller location than the others. It’s 3,200 square feet. So we will have a limited menu, but most of things we have removed are items college students do not order.”

pg. 8

The family debated how to run the Mercer Village location, whether as a full-service restaurant or a setup similar to Moe’s . “We want to continue the feel of traditional Mexican restaurants where customers sit down to order and they are served chips and salsa.” The restaurant will also have the feel of a pub where students and locals can come to enjoy a beer and football games on Saturdays. The tentative plan for the Margarita’s restaurant is to have 36 draft beers and a large selection of bottled beers as well. “This location will cater to a different clientele than the other three and will reach a new market,” said Cork. “Our plan is to gain input from students and local residents about what selection of beers they want.”


FOOD, continued on page 4

Cluster wins awards in Society for Collegiate Journalists’ National Contest By Liz Bibb Co-Editor in Chief

Mercer University’s student-run newspaper, The Cluster, placed in six categories in the Society for Collegiate Journalists’ annual national contest. The paper was awarded third place for overall excellence in its division, which encompassed papers that come out weekly or less. In the category of Newspaper Design, the paper placed first in front

page design and editorial page design, and third in news page design and sports page design. The Cluster also won first place for best advertising portfolio. The Society for Collegiate Journalists sponsors this contest each year, and all member schools are invited to enter. Mercer has had an SCJ chapter since 2007. There are over 150 colleges and universities across the country that have active chapters. SCJ faculty advisor Jay Black said he is glad to see the Cluster recognized. “I have seen the value of my students’ work rise every year since

I’ve been here. The only way to be a good journalist is to write,” Black said. “The value of the Cluster is that the quality of the paper is at a level now that somebody who is just beginning can write stories and their peers and upperclassmen can turn them into a better writer. It is through the mentoring process of the Cluster that has made us not only a good student newspaper, but also an excellent news source for Central Georgia.” Black also feels that Mercer’s SCJ chapter has been an integral part of the Cluster’s success. “SCJ’s mission on campus is to promote the media, and by actively doing that we created

awareness. This added awareness has put pressure on the Cluster staff to be that much better,” he said. Senior Morgan Riley, outgoing president of SCJ, said the awards are well deserved because of the hard work done by Cluster staff. “The Cluster never ceases to amaze me,” Riley said. “The awards truly reflect the talent here and I love the standard we’re creating for journalism at Mercer. Everyone should be beyond proud because we’re doing great things.” The Society for Collegiate Journalists is an establishment intended to promote and expand media on college

campuses. It places a strong emphasis on service and expects its members to take leadership roles in campus media. Mercer has recently been selected to host the Society for Collegiate Journalists 2012 Biannual Conference on March 9-11. Cluster faculty advisor Lee Greenway was pleased with the outcome of the contest. “I couldn’t be more proud of the staff of the Cluster. The students consistently prove their talent and ability; no surprise that they would show so well at the national level,” he said.

weekendweather weekend

Low around 52 Tonight

High around 82 Friday

Low around 53 Friday night

High near 86 Saturday

Low around 59 Saturday night

High near 87 Sunday

Low near 64 Sunday night

Weather information provided by the National Weather Service Front Page.indd 1

4/27/11 12:06:49 AM

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 2

Opinions Editor Sean Kennedy

chiefobservations Well, my friends, we’ve reached the final issue. This is a very emotional one for me, because I’m losing some staff members who have become like family to me. I’m not going to go into a big emotional speech right now (I’ll save that for my toasts at the dinner on Friday!), but suffice to say I’m going to miss you all more than you know. I came to Mercer with the goal of being Editor in Chief of The Cluster. I can’t deny that I’m proud to have achieved the goal by my third year of college, but I have gained so much more from this paper than I ever anticipated. I originally wanted to be editor for personal, ambitious reasons. I wanted the experience and it would look good on my resume. Once I came on staff, however, I discovered that it gave me the ability to form relationships with people I will never forget and grow as a person in unexpected ways. As the year comes to an end, I want to emphasize how proud I am of everyone who has made the Cluster what it is. We’ve won several awards this year, yes, but beyond that it’s about the fact that I can come into this office every other week and know that I’m working on something that I can be proud of and that you all can be proud of as well. To my departing staff: Each and every one of you has brought something unique to this paper. I’ve been on staff for two years now, and I can honestly say that we have something special. Not only are we co-workers; we’re friends as well. I will truly miss you. To my returning staff: I can’t express how happy I am to continue working with you all! Get ready to do work at the Georgia College Press Association awards next year! To my new staff: I am so thrilled to welcome each of you to our team. We do expect great things, but I feel certain that you all are up to the challenge. Now you’ll just have to learn how to survive layout night in the office! To Morgan: I absolutely could not have done this without you this year. You’ve provided constant help and support, never complaining about the hard work and always striving for perfection. Thank you for being a wonderful co-editor and an even better friend. I wish you nothing but the best in your future endeavors.

Opinions Some brief observations for the road

Sean Kennedy Opinions Editor

This will be my last editorial; I’m headed overseas next year. Both satisfaction and frustration characterized my time as the opinions editor. I’ve truly enjoyed reading opinions different from mine while partying hard in the newspaper office. But I’ll be frank: frustration with Mercer’s incredibly apathetic student body overwhelmed most of my positive emotions this year. I know this paper has a large audience. I know plenty of students and parents read these

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

Note the warm and friendly posture of this talented student.

You probably have prejudicial and incorrect beliefs about Islam and many people living in the Middle East. Unfortunately, Islamophobia is constantly reinforced in our media and culture. To better understand Islam and the many cultures associated with the religion, try talking to the Muslim Student Association on campus, and make sure to take a Middle Eastern politics class.

Co-Editors in Chief Elizabeth Bibb and Morgan Riley

News Kathleen Quinlan


Features Alicia Landrum features@

Entertainment Eric Brown entertainment@

Around Campus Rebecca Payne aroundcampus@

Business Manager Kayleigh Irby advertising

Sports Samir Moussawel sports@

Screenshot of Fox News

Because it’s a terroristic Muslim conspiracy, duh!

Never discount the power of perspective. A characteristic of true intelligence is the ability to analyze a problem through multiple lenses. Too often students enter grad programs with their minds set on solely developing their preconceived notions. By challenging their most deeply held beliefs, they will become stronger intellectually.

Photography Noah Maier

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

The Washington Consensus looks slightly less appealing when you have so much on your back.


Copy Editor Brittani Howell

Online Editor Carl Lewis online @

Adviser Lee Greenway Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

Blasphemy never tasted so good.

editorialpolicy Editorial opinions in this paper only reflect the opinion of the writer, not the opinion of The Cluster or Mercer University. Writers are encouraged to keep letters to the editor around 300 words. The Cluster reserves the right to edit letters for length. Questions regarding editorials or letters to the editor should be sent to:

Don’t whine about writing classes. Every student enters Mercer boasting of their writing skills and flaunting their AP scores, yet the papers they author are often unclear and poorly organized. There is a reason all liberal arts students are required to take extra writing classes. The ability to write concisely is a universally applicable skill, one few have mastered by the time they leave high school.

When judging someone’s character, look at how they treat those who are less socially acceptable and/or intelligent than they are. Anyone can suck up to their idols, yet few have the courage to treat every human being with respect and kindness. Remember, the ones you degrade may eventually surpass you intellectually.


Opinions Sean Kennedy

the abortion issue. Unfortunately, at this point I’m not sure how to get students more involved with the political debate on these pages. Sadly, this year hasn’t been any different from past ones. Previous opinions editors have also noted widespread apathy. Irony aside, both myself and the future opinions editor would appreciate any suggestions on how to fix this problem. In the meantime, here are assorted tips which might make you more awesome.

If this book is not on your shelf, please make amends.

Much Love, Liz

pages. Yet few care enough to write in when they disgaree with our columns! It isn’t like the writers of this paper are griping about trivial matters. We are constantly tackling the most controversial issues in the political sphere. For example, in the last issue I challenged the belief that the Bible supports the pro-life movement. Where was the pro-life response? I see MSFL (Mercer Students for Life) protesting on campus regularly. I know students care about

Every single student at Mercer is gifted with access to a higher education. Few are lucky enough to be born into our well-developed country. I firmly believe one commits a cardinal sin when they do not attempt to extend their advantage unto others. After all, we have the hard work and generosity of the generation before us to thank for our ability to enjoy high standards of living. Don’t just enter the workforce with hopes of a whitecollar job and a decent family. Go beyond that and, dare I say, be the bear.

Next time you want a great lunch, head down to the Rookery. Much has changed since 2009, when plastered freshmen packed the dance floor. The new management has rubbed out the stains. Take a look at the great menu filled with excellent American cuisine and an expansive beer selection. In fact, I believe the Rookery’s burgers rival those of the Vortex in Atlanta. Is such an assertion blasphemy? Probably, but you should make the call after trying the food yourself.

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

Follow in the footsteps of the magnificent Ursus arctos.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 3


Students need more graduation tickets Morgan Riley Co-Editor in Chief

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

ROTC students currently do not have the privilege of registering early for classes.

ROTC students deserve early registration C.J. Akins

There are 300 million people in the United States, and 1.5 million of them are active duty members of the United States Armed Forces. These are members of the Marine Corps, Navy, Army and Air Force. They are the defenders of our country, our values, our way of life and our democracy. They preserve freedom for not only our country, but also freedom for many other countries around the world. Here at Mercer, we are privileged with the opportunity to share our academic pursuits with men and women who will go on to serve in these branches of the Armed Forces; the men and women of ROTC. They work harder and longer in a day than some students do in a week. They are models for what every student and citizen of our country should be: patriots. Because of their rigorous schedules and trying obligations, I believe that the students of ROTC should be allowed to register early. These students wake up at five in the morning nearly every day.

After waking up they are required to do rigorous physical activity for an hour. Then they go to their regular classes, meaning the classes required for their majors or the general education track. These classes have to be fitted around their required ROTC classes. Every ROTC student is required to take at least one Military Science class a semester, plus a required lab that lasts two and half hours. The class plus the lab comes to a grand total of three credit hours per semester, even though ROTC students are usually in these classes for close to six hours a week. In addition to taking these ROTC classes, these students also have to make sure that they are on track to graduate or face the risk of losing their scholarships. A two-year, three-year and four-year scholarship is offered to these ROTC students. Most of the ROTC students are on a four-year scholarship, which means the American government pays for their tuition and Mercer pays for their room and board. In order to keep the scholarship the student must have a 2.0 GPA, take at least 12

hours every semester and must serve in the Armed Forces. The requirements set upon these students are burdensome, time consuming and time constraining. These students are the future and current defenders of our country; it is time that we as a university recognized the honor of the daily and lifelong struggles they will face in service of our country. There are approximately 5,300 students in ROTC nationwide who have different and sometimes less rigorous requirements than our program has. We have approximately 45 of those students. Shouldn’t we be asking as a university what we can do to help them in their academic pursuits? The very least we can do in aiding their progress is to give them the privilege to register early. If we hold athletes and honor students to a higher standard and aid them in their academic pursuits, why not the students who will and who have served our country? Comments on this opinion can be sent to cjakins007@hotmail. com

I would like to begin this article by thanking Mercer for ruining my excitement about the graduation ceremony. Yes, thank you. To avoid singling out certain individuals I will direct my article, simply, to Mercer. Judging from the multiple conversations and Facebook statuses, I’m sure seniors can agree with me that Mercer is wrong for limiting us to only five tickets for graduation. Ever since the distribution of tickets I have seen at least five Facebook statuses from different students asking—and even begging—for extra tickets. Is it space, Mercer? You can fix that issue. How hard can it be to rent the Macon Coliseum so that there will be no worries about seating? I don’t care whether I graduate on or off campus; hell, I graduated high school at the Gwinnett Civic Center. It’s not a big deal. My family doesn’t care about seeing the campus either; I have been here four years and they have seen enough of it. Is it a money issue, Mercer?

Does it cost too much to rent the Macon Coliseum for a day? If the school can spend money on pointless programs such as MercerMobile (which we saw was a complete fail, among other things), then why can’t there be an initiative for a better or larger venue for the graduation ceremony? This five-ticket thing is ridiculous. I don’t think Mercer, the school I have attended for four years and for which I will be in debt, doesn’t care that I have to tell family members that have been influential figures in my college career that they cannot come because I am only allotted so many tickets. For me college graduation is far more important than high school, and you’re telling me that my family traveling to Georgia from New Jersey can come sit in the Medical School auditorium and watch me graduate on a screen? That’s insulting! What about those who have more than five people in their immediate family? Surprise, Mercer, I actually have two parents and more than one sibling! Shocking, right? I can’t imagine how those with more

than two or three siblings are handling this ticket situation. It seems as if Mercer cares more about their own interests rather than the interests of the students who pay tuition to go here. I promise I’m not the first or the last to complain about Mercer rationing students five tickets as if our families (outside the immediate family) don’t care about our achievements. At some point shouldn’t you listen, Mercer? This isn’t another complaint — take into account how annoying it is to only have five tickets for my college graduation as opposed to my high school graduation, for which I was given 20. May 14 is a special day for not only students, but also our families, relatives, friends, mentors and others who have been supportive during out time here at Mercer. I’m not saying students should be given 20 or 30 tickets, but would five more really hurt? As much as tuition costs for four years at this university, I should be able to have at least 10 tickets! Comments on this opinion should be sent to editor@

J. Crew controversy brings out the bigots Liz Bibb Co-Editor in Chief Last week, the nation erupted in outrage over an incident that had liberals and conservatives engaged in vicious mudslinging. Was it the United States’ involvement with the war in Libya? No. Was it the disturbingly partisan nature of the recent budget crisis? No. It was something much worse. Popular clothing line J. Crew, heaven forbid, recently ran an ad featuring a small boy with bright pink polish on his toenails. The ad was part of a feature in J. Crew’s catalogue titled “Saturday with Jenna” that gave a peek into the life of its president and creative director Jenna Lyons. In the photo Lyons is grinning from ear to ear at her laughing son while holding his foot, which sports hot pink toenails. Touching moment between mother and son captured on film? NO. Intentional assault on gender norms and family values everywhere! As one Fox News contributor Dr. Keith Ablow asked, “If you

have no problem with the J. Crew ad, how about one in which a little boy models a sundress?” Nope — sorry, Fox News, no problem with that either. The controversy about this ad centers around the concept that there are things that belong to boys and things that belong to girls, and anything that blurs the line will undoubtedly end with gender confusion and ultimately sex-change surgery, or, as Ablow calls it, “procedures to grotesquely amputate body parts.” Aren’t we supposed to be past gender stereotyping? As one commentator on the story pointed out, the world would pass over an ad featuring a young girl wearing jeans and playing in the dirt with a Tonka truck without a second glance. And why? Because her crossing of gender norms makes her an empowered woman! As a matter of fact, the general public would reject a requirement that a female child be forced to wear a pink dress and play with dolls for the purpose of advertising, so why should this little boy be forced to do likewise? We can’t pick and choose which gender norms we reject and which ones we follow.

More important, Lyons is being backhandedly accused of bad parenting as a result of this ad. Bad parenting, really? As pointed out by a columnist on RVAnews. com, a New York mother recently killed herself and her three children, but we’re concerned about a mother painting her son’s toenails. Parents abuse, neglect and abandon their children daily. A mother who does not conform to gender norms is not a bad mother. A gay couple who I know very well recently adopted three beautiful children after years of unsuccessful ventures with adoption agencies around the world. Their birth mother has five children under the age of six, and all of them have been taken away from her. Are we really supposed to believe that these children would be better off with their biological mother because now they have two loving daddies who aren’t likely to enforce strict gender roles? Somehow I think not. Comments on this opinion can be sent to editor@mercercluster. com

BEAR Day shines, but could use improvement Gene Mitchell

Photo courtesy of Sean Kennedy

Cyclists face dangerous drivers on roads when forced off of pedestrian sidewalks.

For cyclists’ safety, allow biking on sidewalks Jonathan Popham Anything worthwhile deserves protecting. I think most rational people could agree with that. Quality of life is inarguably worthwhile. The cities that are usually rated with the highest quality of life are generally also rated the most cycling-friendly cities in the world. Because of this, I conclude that there is likely a correlation between cycling and quality of life. With this logic, it makes great sense to promote cycling as a means of transportation and personal wellness, and as a benefit to the environment. Mercer University, the College Hill Corridor Commission and the city of Macon all recognize this to some extent. Cycling is a legitimate form of transportation, especially in urban areas. The problem is that cycling can be highly dangerous for the cyclist. Reason being? According to the most recent Crash Analysis, Statistics & Information (CASI) released by the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) cyclists are 10 times more

likely to be killed in a collision with an automobile than a person inside of the motor vehicle. A car is different from a bicycle. While this seems like common sense, the law says otherwise. Georgia law says that regardless of the obvious differences in speed, mass and protection, a bicycle is legally identical to an automobile. The worst part? Georgia Senate Bill 196 declares that (40-6-144) “Except as provided by resolution or ordinance of a local government for sidewalks within the jurisdiction of such local government authorizing the operation of bicycles on sidewalks by persons 12 years or younger, no person shall drive any vehicle upon a sidewalk area except upon a permanent or duly authorized driveway.” More or less, this means that if you are over 12 you can’t ride your bike on the sidewalk. I’m not saying that we should have all cyclists ride on the sidewalk in lieu of bike lanes; I’m saying that we should at least allow for the possibility for cyclists to share the sidewalk as well as the road. Cyclists on the sidewalk can

be dangerous for pedestrians, but until bike lanes are ubiquitous in Macon (see: never), it should be allowable in a given circumstance but should remain ticket-able at the discretion of police. Would you ever ride your bike down Vineville Ave. at 12:00 p.m. on a Monday? Would a jogger run through a minefield? Since Macon lacks the funds, infrastructure and political will for bicycle lanes, we should protect our citizens in the next best way. Cyclists should ride in the road for the safety of pedestrians but on the sidewalk for their own safety. An informal poll around campus shows that not only is this the opinion of most students, but the illegal status of sidewalk riding amazed them. Cycling isn’t going anywhere. Until Macon’s city government or the state government changes its stance, I recommend Thomas Jefferson’s advice: “If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is obligated to do so.” Comments on this opinion can be sent to jonathan.popham@

Mercer University’s College of Liberal Arts has implemented a unique experience for undergraduates to display their research for colleagues and professors to recognize. The students who presented at the new Breakthroughs in Engagement, Arts, and Research (BEAR) Day, which took place two weeks ago, really showed how impressive Mercer students are at research. All day long students could visit panels addressing a wide variety of topics, ranging from research on languages to children’s transitions from orphanages and even local Macon outreach projects. BEAR Day even allowed different modes of expression by students presenting orally, with or without media, or a poster display in the University Center. Based on the four panel presentations I attended, Mercer CLA students demonstrated how well Mercer University prepares undergraduates for research and analysis. I was especially impressed with my fellow colleagues’ ability to convey their research in a timely manner that was understandable to an audience that may not have any familiarity with the research topic. To further continue my accolades for the event, CLA and Dean Lake Lambert made a great decision to cancel class to allow students to attend some of the panels throughout the entire day. The decision to cancel class allowed for a great turnout as every panel I visited had no less than fifteen students in the audience listening and engaging in the questioning period. Even the keynote speaker held a large, well represented audience. The only critique I have of BEAR Day experience came with the feedback given to the

presentations — or should I say lack of feedback. The only feedback given was who the winners were and who the winners were not. This, unfortunately, gave the impression to many students that their presentations were not sufficient for criticism. Only those who were awarded received feedback on their work. Many students were left wondering why their research and presentations did not win or what they needed to work on. If Mercer University wants BEAR Day to become a successful event in the future, the faculty must reconcile this problem. Students need feedback to better their research, further their work and understand their mistakes and accomplishments. Maybe a BEAR Week would provide the remedy. Instead of presenting every project and poster in five hours, allow several rounds of presentations and critical rounds. More time will enhance the experience. This way not every school has to close down for an entire day and not all presentations have to be presented in a concentrated time. Instead, a block system would provide a number of panels to present. Then, after all participants have presented on the final day of the week, the selected top presenters can present again in front of a much wider academic audience. This will provide more feedback, more analysis and a more thorough experience for all Mercer students. This year’s BEAR Day, though, was a great step in the right direction. Not everyone, it seems, thought BEAR Day was important enough to allow students to participate. Several students and faculty stated that Mercer University’s Business School, among others, declined to cancel class. This left students taking classes at the Business School, who may have wanted

to attend, with the threat of penalization for missing class or participating and supporting their fellow students at BEAR Day. This projected the message that BEAR Day, and student research, is not important to the Business School. This decision to not cancel class points to a serious problem: either we, as a university, support one another or we do not. No matter what the logic or reasoning, the Business School’s actions show that it does not wish to support other entities on campus. This shows a serious divide that should not exist on our campus. All of Mercer’s colleges benefit from other colleges excelling at what they do. Many students who major in political science take entry-level courses in economics, engineering students take classes in science and foreign languages, and so on and so forth. Why do students take a wide variety of classes? Because we believe that a liberal education with a wide range of learning experiences enhances our collegiate experience. To interpret my understanding, Mercer University does not consist of several colleges but several colleges belong to Mercer University. This lack of apparent willingness to collaborate shows either a lack of leadership at a high level or unwillingness to work with others. Those who made the decision to not join in the CLA’s decision to afford all students the opportunity to participate on BEAR Day clearly did not think about this perception. That is unfortunate and only shows yet another reason why Mercer must create things like the new Lyceum to encourage people to work together.

Comments on this opinion can be sent to donald.e.mitchell@


The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 4

News Editor Kathleen Quinlan

New campus restaurants to open FOOD, continued from page 1

The target opening for the Mexican restaurant is Aug. 1. The business will do a soft opening to ensure that everything is running smoothly. The hours of operation for the Mercer Village location will be flexible. “We’re going to do whatever we can to be open when business dictates. Our intention is to be open for kids to eat on Thursday nights at midnight if that’s what they want.” However, the restaurant will be sensitive to residents living above the establishment. Natasha Phillips, owner of Fountain of Juice, said the new restaurant will have the same feel and menu as the current location on Vineville. “We’ve seen the area grow and College Hill grow and we wanted to be part of it,” Phillips said. The tentative hours of operation for Fountain of Juice are 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays. The restaurant will offer breakfast items such as paninis and frittatas while continuing

their tradition of soups, salads and sandwiches for lunch. Phillips said, “We use allnatural ingredients and we try to stay healthy, but not everything can be. We use heavy creams in some of our soups.” The restaurant will also offer smoothies, juices and baked goods. Phillips said that their signature vanilla cupcakes with cream cheese frosting as well as homemade cookies will be available. “We are a green restaurant. We use cups made of corn that biodegrade quickly and our forks and spoons are made from potato starch,” Phillips said. She and her husband, Carl, opened the Vineville location in November of 2007. Carl Phillips is a Mercer alumni who graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. He then attended graduate school at the Savannah College of Art and Design. The Mercer Village location for Fountain of Juice will incorporate the same bright feel as the Vineville location. For the full menu and updates on the progress of Fountain of Juice’s new location students can visit

Michael Dellapolla / Cluster Staff

Fountain of Juice and Maragrita’s are set to open in the Corridor soon. Fountain of Juice’s sign (above) went up recently. The green restaurants will serve cupcakes, soups and salads. Maragrita’s will open on Aug. 1 next semester.

Weekly local market opens, 16 farmers sell fresh goods By Katherine Manson Staff Writer

Alicia Landrum / Cluster Staff

Student Health Services is available to all students. Some students have not been pleased with their visits while others think that the nurses do all they can with what they have.

Student Health Services provides limited help, informative handouts By Alicia Landrum Features Editor

Mercer’s Student Health Center, located in the Patterson Building, is available free of charge to all Mercer students, Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m and 1:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. Students who choose to go to the Student Health Center will be evaluated by a nurse, but in order to meet with a doctor an appointment must be made. This often proves difficult to arrange with any form of haste. Many students have been disappointed with the treatment they have received from the Student Health Center. Michael Dellapolla, senior biochemistry and molecular biology major, said, “I think that they don’t have enough rights. I don’t think they’re allowed to do enough, but the ladies who work there are so nice that I think they’d do more if they could.” Senior creative writing major Rebecca Aileen Reed said, “Honestly, they aren’t up to date on treatments for things. I went there for bandages when I burned my hand. The nurse put sulfur on it. They stopped doing that years ago. I’ve never had a good experience there.” Liz Bibb, junior journalism and political science major, has had disappointing experiences at the Student Health Center. She had fallen in her bathroom and gotten a nasty bruise and a cut on her forehead. She left work early and drove to the Student Health Center because she began to feel nauseous. Bibb said, “When I got there, the lady at the reception desk told me that there was no doctor in the building at the time

“I think that they don’t have enough rights. I don’t think they’re allowed to do enough, but the ladies who work there are so nice that I think they’d do more if they could. ” Michael Dellapolla, senior

and that they did not have the equipment necessary to check for a concussion. To my knowledge, this equipment consists of a flashlight to shine in my eyes. She gave me a list of urgent care locations, told me it was good I had bangs to cover the bruise on my forehead and sent me on my way.” Bibb has had a positive experience as well. “When I had a cold, they gave me some medicine that worked when nothing else did,” she said. If a student is suffering from ailments that the Student Health Center is not equipped to treat, he or she is given a printout listing many local specialists. Specialists listed include ophthalmologists, gynecologists, neurologists, dermatologists and more. Handouts are often used to distribute information at the

Student Health Center. The handout titled “Student Health Center FAQs” explains the process of seeing a nurse or physician. It reads, “The nurse will triage/evaluate all patients; she will either treat you or refer you to the doctor, or to a facility off-campus. If you are here for a scheduled appointment, the doctor will see you after the nurse has screened you.” Junior Brittany Dant said, “When I had mono, the doctor told me I had it by handing me an information packet called ‘So you have mono. What to do next.’” For sore throats, the Student Health Center offers literature on a Central and South American cure-all for sore throats: eating raw pineapple. Cameron Kunzelman, junior English major, said, “I felt like I was going to die and they gave me ‘magic mouthwash’ and told me I could see a doctor the next day … It was some kind of gargle stuff for a sore throat, and it actually worked. It really wasn’t that bad, and I didn’t die, so I guess they did their job.” Former Mercer student Dustin Lee had a few unpleasant experiences at the Student Health Center during his three semesters at Mercer. He said, “After stumbling up the stairs to it with two broken toes, I waited for 35 minutes because the doctor was getting lunch. Also, he once told me I had ‘allergies’ when really I had a terrible throat infection that was eating me alive.” The student health center does offer a variety of free goods, such as small packs of tampons, bags full of condoms and razors. For students in need of medical assistance, call the Student Health Center during working hours at (478) 301-2696.

Macon’s Main Street Program, Community Health Works and Macon Roots have recently collaborated on a new farmers’ market in downtown Macon called Mulberry Street Market. The producer-only farmers’ market will supply local organic meats, produce and eggs in Mulberry Street Park from April through September. All the products in the market are locally grown, giving customers the ability to buy the freshest products while creating relationships with the farmers who grew them and to ask the farmers questions directly. The farmer’s market has been in business for four weeks and is open every Wednesday from 4:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. selling a variety of fresh goods from fruits and vegetables to a variety of meats. “The whole idea is to support local farmers so the people that

you see at the Mulberry Street Market are the actual producers of the food,” said Tripp Eldridge, the Food Access Coordinator for Community Health Works. The Mulberry Street Market was created as a response to consumer demands. Alex Morrison, Director of Macon’s Main Street Program, conducted an informal survey to determine the customers’ preferences. “This Wednesday market is a result of responding to those consumer demands for a consistent weekly market that’s producer-only and conveniently accessible to the central business district downtown. We found that the Saturday markets were hard to get consumer participation in because they were perceived as being inconvenient. People didn’t want to come downtown in the weekend as much,” Eldridge said. Mulberry Street Market is hoping to increase their selection while keeping the focus on fresh, local food. Currently, there are 16 farmers participat-

ing who frequently have been selling out at each market. “My favorite part about the market is seeing the farmers go home with an empty truck. There are a lot of measures of success for farmers’ markets but the market only survives if the farmers go home emptyhanded,” Eldridge said. “Farmers’ markets are known for being this intersection of so many positive things, such as community development and sustaining your local farmers. It’s an environmental choice and it’s a health choice,” Eldridge said. Macon has experienced farmers’ markets in the past, but none quite like Mulberry Street Market. The Mulberry Street Market, located between First and Second Street, is in the heart of downtown Macon. “We’ve had this history, this food culture, but it was so quickly eroded by the convenience of everything so [Mulberry Street Market] is reclaiming that food culture before it’s totally lost and just falling in love with what real food is again,” Eldridge said.

Urban Development Authority names Mercer graduate Executive Director By Morgan Riley Co-Editor in Chief

The Macon-Bibb County Urban Development Authority (UDA) recently hired Alex Morrison, former Mercer student and Cluster editor, as the new Executive Director. Morrison, chosen out of 55 applicants during a yearlong search, will begin the position on May 2. While searching for potential candidates the authority considered merging the position with NewTown Macon, the city’s Economic Community Development Department and the Middle Georgia Regional Commission, but decided keep the position and hire Morrison. The UDA board ratified the vote and officially hired him on March 31. Morrison said he has no fear or hesitation about the job. “I’m very excited to start work over there,” he said. Morrison graduated from Mercer in 2007 with a degree in journalism and philosophy. While at Mercer, he was Editor in Chief for the Cluster for two years and one of the four students who developed the original College Hill Corridor plan. After graduating from Mercer

Photo courtesy of Alex Morrison

Morrison attended the University of Georgia, where he then received his master’s in public administration. Even after living in Athens for two years, he has not been a stranger to the area — one week after graduating, he moved back to Macon. Morrison was hired and began his position as the Business and Economic Specialist for the City of Macon, as well as taking on the position of Main Street Program Manager when he moved back. He currently assists with development projects and coordinates the Main Street Program, a four-point approach to downtown development. He will be leaving this posi-

tion to serve as the UDA director. The UDA is a constitutioally created authority that is in charge of issuing bonds and pursuing development projects in the urban area. As director, Morrison will manage day-to-day affairs and promote development projects that focus on economic growth and the preservation and rejuvenation of historic buildings. He will also focus on recruiting new businesses to downtown, increasing residential living and buying and redeveloping properties. “We’re really excited to take this step and make it happen downtown in a creative and new way,” he said. Morrison said he is ready with ideas and sees this as a great opportunity to get things off the ground for continuing development in the downtown area. He wants to get community input on accelerating development downtown. “One of the things we’re looking at is coming up with a master plan for Macon,” he said. “Something similar to the College Hill Corridor.” Morrison will replace longtime UDA director Sid Cherry. Cherry has held the position for 34 years and announced his retirement over a year ago. He agreed to stay until a new director was found.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 5


Physical Plant to remove asbestos from air vents Willet will shut down during process By Ashley Mann Staff Writer

Mercer University’s Physical Plant department is planning to remove hazardous asbestos materials from on-campus buildings during the final weeks of the semester. Newly constructed buildings pose little to no risk of containing asbestos, but older campus buildings pose a greater risk of containing asbestos and asbestos-related materials. Director of Mercer University’s Physical Plant Russell Vullo suggests that the materials have been in campus buildings for years. “Asbestos was a common construction material and has been in the building since it was constructed,” Vullo said. In the upcoming weeks Mercer University plans to complete a removal, or abatement, of Willet Science Center. Three Heating Ventilating and Air Conditioning (HVAC) units containing asbestos are due to be replaced during the summer term. The process will take an estimated two weeks to complete, and will only be scheduled when the building is unoccupied. Renovations to other sites on campus containing the

mineral fiber will be completed over time on an as-needed basis. Asbestos-containing materials will be managed and protected until a removal date is scheduled. The State of Georgia Environmental Protection Division has been notified on the abatement project, as required by law. The Physical Plant department aims to see that the asbestos abatement process meets federal and state codes from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency. In order to ensure the safety of Mercer faculty and staff, Vullo urges that no one disturb asbestos containing material. This can include but is not limited to insulation, carpeting, adhesives and tiles. “As long as the asbestos is not disturbed or made friable there is no health risk,” Vullo said. Dean of the Mercer University School of Medicine Dr. William Bina III states that the health risks posed are often seen over time. “Health risks occur when asbestos fibers are inhaled over a long time period and are not likely from a single exposure. Diseases occur late in life up to 25 years or more, and result in meso-

thelioma, lung cancer or pneumoconiosis (lung disease),” Bina said. The signs and symptoms after exposure include chronic cough, chest pain and shortness of breath, all of which should “prompt a visit to one’s personal physician who can then initiate an investigation of the problem,” Bina said. “The health effects of asbestos occur many years after exposure, usually decades,” said Associate Professor of Pathology for Mercer School of Medicine, Jerome Tift, M.D. Tift states that these symptoms usually manifest themselves as fibrosis of the lungs or abnormalities related to the lungs and chest wall. Those who come in constant contact with the material should exercise extreme caution. “Special respiratory masks are available and should be used if asbestos fibers are present in the air. After exposure, absolutely one must stop smoking and receive routine screening examinations as determined by the personal physician,” Bina said. The Mercer University Physical Plant adds, “In addition, Mercer uses licensed and certified abatement contractors to properly abate asbestos-containing materials,” according to Vullo.

newclustereditors Editor in Chief Liz Bibb

Opinions Brittany Dant opinions@

Sports Samir Moussawel sports@

Features Alicia Landrum features@

Photography Noah Maier photography@

Entertainment Eric Brown entertainment@

Copy Editor Shohna Neumann

Around Campus Rebecca Payne aroundcampus@

Online Editor Emily Garrott online @

News Katherine Manson

Adviser Lee Greenway

Congratulations to the new Cluster 2011 - 2012 editorial staff! If you are interested in writing for the Cluster, check for the date of the first story meeting of next semester!

Ceremony recognizes faculty and staff, retirees honored By Rebecca Reed Staff Writer

Mercer University staff and faculty were honored at a ceremony held in the Medical School Auditorium. People were honored for five, 10, 15, 20, 30, 35 and 40 years of service. There were 46 people honored for their years of service to the university. Each person received a plaque and a picture taken with President Underwood. Additionally, three people who retired last semester or are retiring at the end of the term sat on the stage. They were Carolyn R. Dawson, J. Barry Jenkins and Gloria O. Marshall. Dawson was retiring for the second time. She was the switchboard operator/receptionist in the RAC office. She single-handedly boosted the enrollment numbers for the regional academic centers. Jenkins had a whole list of things for Marilyn Mindingall to read, but she went off

script, which for Jenkins was something not allowed. Barry helped several people broaden their scopes and become more well-known at Mercer, including Doug Pearson. He helped shepherd many events at Mercer including the creation of Jesse Mercer’s statue, renovation of the tower stairs and implementing the tower tour, reestablishing Founder’s Day, reestablishing Pilgrimage to Penfield, establishing Family Weekend and the Christmas Tree Lighting, “and other things like the chimes in Willingham that have since been moved to Tarver Library and the lighting of the Spires.” Marshall worked for three of Mercer’s presidents. She came to Mercer in March 1972 and her first order was to draft a resolution to build the Medical School. She learned from a phone call to the governor’s office that “every resolution must have three ‘whereas’s’ and one ‘therefore.’” Since then she has written over thousands of resolutions. She then helped “plan and implement the dedication of every room” in the Law School except for the bathrooms. She has been

told that she is “a happy spirit and [she] can learn” as she moved to the fundraising position in the School of Engineering. The three retirees all got a moment to listen to a colleague and friend talk about their work on campus and how they have affected Mercer. After the retirees were honored, the rest of the attendees received attention as well. As Diane Baca called each name, she said something kind about each one and joked with some, even hugging a few when their turn came. A special thanks was given to the people who had already retired from Mercer and came to see the new honorees. They were recognized and each received his or her own round of applause for their service. A few of the names were Billy Crooms, William Davis, Peggy Dubose, Kenneth Hammond and Bobby Wilder. And as Craig McMahan said in his invocation, “And for each name who is called, and for each one that isn’t, for all those who weave their lives together in the fabric we call Mercer, we are grateful.”

Rebecca Reed / Cluster Staff

Gloria O. Marshall, J. Barry Jenkins and Carolyn R. Dawson sit onstage during the faculty recognition ceremony. The ceremony honored faculty and staff for their years of service.

Post-graduation plans take over students’ minds, professors excited that school is out for summer By Rebecca Reed Staff Writer

Every year Mercer students and faculty have a set of postgraduation plans. This year, while graduating students are leaving after their four years here, a few teachers are also taking sabbaticals. Senior Rachel Velie plans to relax this summer before continuing her education. “I plan to take the summer to regain my sanity and then go to grad school to become a CPA, which is a Certified Personal Accountant. I can do your taxes one day!” Velie said. Senior Charles Peterson has big plans that changed from his original idea. He plans to travel abroad to teach. “My decision to go abroad was started by my experiences studying in Oxford, England. Upon starting my senior year, my friend encouraged me to apply for the Fulbright scholarship. I was rejected at the national level, but I had already decided upon Thailand,

so transferring to Mercer’s Service First program was a natural step,” Peterson said. “I chose Thailand because I am interested in the role of myths and story within national culture. Thailand is a country still in touch with its oral heritage, and I am interested in how a Hindu myth, the Ramayana, influences many of the national stories and a Buddhist culture. If I attend a graduate program after my time in Thailand, I hope to study cross-cultural myth, possibly through comparative literature. Also, I chose to teach based upon my experiences tutoring at L.H. Williams Elementary in Macon. Foremost, I wanted to have a period of time before continuing school in which I was being active in a community setting and using my skills to help promote better crosscultural understanding.” Kashfia Khan joked about summer plans. “Well, I wanted to be a billionaire right after graduation, but reality seems to be so different. So I am going for plan B: Go to grad school at Mercer in Atlanta. Maybe

the bigger city can help me be super rich,” Khan said. Kara Brown has been applying for teaching jobs, but has not heard back yet. This summer, Jane Frances Abel wants to be an elementary school music teacher in addition to getting a puppy. Senior Jaclyn Crumbley plans to attend graduate school after taking a little break. “I’m going to do something for the next school year then grad school after that. I have very well defined plans, as you can see. Yet that’s what’s scary about them. You’re so free, you can do anything you want, so you don’t know what to do,” Crumbley said. Candace Henderson already has a job lined up after graduation. “I have a job at Warner Robins High School in Warner Robins. I will be teaching Biology. After a year or so, I plan on getting my master’s,” Henderson said. Senior Jennifer Smith hopes to break into the publishing industry, but first she wants to relax in the summer and catch up on everything she

had to leave behind during her studies. “If all goes well, after graduation I hope to get a job in the publishing industry, where I can help people perfect their writing while also working on my own. In the meantime, though, I’ll spend my newfound free time meeting some of the goals and doing some of the fun things I’ve been putting off, like catching up on movies, videogames and anime, and maybe learning a new language or two,” Smith said. Dr. Anya Silver will be going on sabbatical in the fall. She plan to use the time to finish her second book of poetry. “Although I will miss my students, it’s wonderful to have a semester to recharge my batteries and devote myself to research and writing. My major project will be to finish my second poetry book manuscript and submit it to my publisher. I will also be planning a new English course on young adult literature. I will be immersing myself in young adult literature and criticism so that I can teach the course in the spring.”

A word from the Honor Council Finals and Academic Honesty Dear fellow students, We know that the workload from your classes ramps up as finals approach. Unfortunately, this pressure leads some students to consider things like copying passages from the Internet into their paper or carrying note cards into a test. The Honor Council urges you to keep academic honesty at the forefront of your priorities; we typically hear many cases regarding finals. Based on the mistakes we’ve seen from nearly all accused students, we compiled a list to help you stay clear of cheating or plagiarism during finals week. 1. Avoid procrastination. 2. Ask your professor about the expectations of your assignments and if you are allowed to work with others. 3. Go to the ARC and have your paper proofread by a writing tutor. 4. Make sure you know what is and what is not allowed during all your testing situations, including your finals. 5. Turn off your cell phone and leave it alone during an exam. 6. Pick up a citation guide appropriate to your field of study. You can find these in the ARC, the library, online or even from a professor. Best of luck with finals! The Honor Council


The Cluster - April 28 2011 - Page 6

Features Editor Alicia Landrum

Ask the Esthetician

End of the year madlib, (plural noun) By Alicia Landrum Features Editor


Kayleigh Irby

Since this is my last column as a Mercer student, I wanted to do something a little different. I want to write about what I have learned through writing this column over the past two years. As cliché as it is, I have learned beauty truly is not just skin deep. It doesn’t matter how many lashlengthening mascaras or lipplumping glosses you own; if you are not a beautiful person on the inside, you will not be beautiful on the outside. So, how do you achieve inner beauty? For each person it is a unique adventure but there are a few universal similarities. First, be a nice person. Seems simple enough, but sometimes we are so selfabsorbed that we forget kind gestures like holding a door open or saying “thank you” and “excuse me.” Second, be caring. You may think this is the same as “be nice,” but by caring I mean take time to actually care what other people say or do. When a friend wants to talk, put down the iPhone and have a conversation. When there is a fundraiser event on campus, find out what it is for and how you can get involved. Third, be positive. Yes, we all have bad days, weeks or even months, but staying positive may help pull you out of that funk. Being a positive person is a conscious decision. I have loved writing this column and I hope you all have loved reading it. May your life be as beautiful as you are!

Finally, after a (measurement of time) of (adjective) work, summer has arrived, and students could not be more (emotion)! (Plural noun) all over campus cannot wait to (verb) to the beach for some serious (noun) and (noun). If you go, you must not forget to put on plenty of (noun) every (measurement of time), or you may (adverb) get a sunburn. There are a few things you should always (verb) when going to the (place). For instance, you will need a (noun), a (verb ending in -ing) suit, and a (thing) to play with on the beach. If you intend to hunt for (plural noun), you will of course need to bring a (noun). Above all, you must not for-

get to pack (plural noun). If you have a (animal), it is important that you check the rules regarding such animals at the (noun) where you plan to stay. While at the (place), you might (verb) a few (adjective) friends. In order to win them over, (verb) them a (noun) or two, and offer to go (verb ending in -ing) with them. Of course, be (adverb) careful while you are on vacation. Do not (verb) for thirty (measurement of time) after eating. If you attend a (noun), do not leave your (noun) unattended. Do not go anywhere with strangers unless you have your (noun) or a (noun) with you. Also, it is important not to become dehydrated, so make sure to (verb) lots of (noun) and (verb) your skin. You must also be careful while (verb ending in -ing), because rip (plural noun) can

This is a (noun) of the (noun). If you plan to (verb) to somewhere like this over the (season), make sure to (verb) this madlib. Otherwise you will (verb) and get (adjective) tan lines. drag you to waters that are well above your (body part), where you could (verb) or even be eaten by (plural noun). If you’re going with family, make sure to (verb) in a way that won’t make them (emo-

tion). (Verb) your language and (verb) your tattoos. If you are bringing a (adjective) other, he or she might become (emotion) if you (verb) with other beach-bodies too much. This can be avoided by telling

him or her how (adjective) and (adjective) he or she is. Don’t let this to-do list concern you too much. The most important thing you can do at the (place) is to remember to have (noun) and to (verb).

‘Mercer Cribs:’ Washington Square Apartment By Brittany Dant Staff Writer

Just minutes away from Joshua Cup and Mercer’s campus sit the lovely Washington Square Apartments that are home to numerous Mercer students, including senior Creative Writing major Rebecca Aileen Reed. Originally built in the early 1900s, the huge gray building that houses the Washington Square Apartments was once known as Navarro Flats.While historical, the apartments have been renovated over the years. A short walk upstairs and

onto a shaded porch area, Aileen’s front door opens up into a narrow entry hallway which leads back to her bedroom, bathroom and laundry room. Right off the main hallway sits her spacious kitchen and beautifully decorated living room, made complete by an extremely comfortable plaid couch. Mirrors, artwork and candles also make the living room inviting and open. This is Aileen’s second year living in the apartments and so far she loves it. “The apartments are on Orange Street. It is less than a mile from campus and it takes about five minutes in the morning to get to school,” said Aileen. “I think my favorite thing was

Kayleigh Irby is a senior at Mercer. She attended Central Georgia Technical College and obtained her esthetics license in 2008. Irby is a journalism major and believes beauty starts with a smile and ends wherever the lip gloss takes you. Have a question for Kayleigh? E-mail your question to

Courtesy of

Brittany Dant / Cluster Staff

Reed loves her apartment. She says it is incredibly spacious and that she still feels connected with campus life.

decorating it — putting holes in the wall and hanging up heavy things. I was able to put up all the pictures I have taken and then there’s my mural that makes me feel like I’m in a village in Italy. My favorite thing was definitely decorating,” Aileen said. The distance and creativity are not the only great things about the apartment. It is also extremely spacious. “A lot of my friends come over and say ‘I can fit my whole apartment in yours.’ I just respond, ‘Yeah, and it’s about the same amount of rent as yours too,” Aileen said with a smirk. “I love living off campus. It is very nice to have a king size bed instead of a twin now. The fun part is that if any of it breaks they replace it,” said Aileen. Aileen also admitted that even though she lives off campus, she never feels disconnected from Mercer. “I go to a lot of events on campus. I still feel connected because a lot of Mercer students live here and go to Joshua Cup. Plus it’s so close to campus,” Aileen said. Aileen often feels as though she never left Mercer’s campus. “It’s almost like not living off campus because of all the Mercer students who live here. There are members of the golf team two doors down and there are some Chi Omega’s that live next door. It’s really nice,” Aileen said. While it may feel as though Ai-

Brittany Dant / Cluster Staff

The Washington Square Apartments are home to several Mercer students, including senior Rebecca Aileen Reed. leen has not strayed too far from Mercer, there are some definite differences for her now. “I feel like I am more free now, even though I don’t do much different here than I did when I lived on campus. It’s all my stuff so it feels more like home, even though my mom tried to make my room on campus homey too,” Aileen said. One thing Aileen does miss about on campus living are noise violations. “There is almost no consideration of the people around you. People have loud music and parties all the time. There are nights when I want to relax but I can’t because I can hear every word of the music playing next door,” Aileen said. While she loves living in

the apartment, Aileen also admitted that there was another drawback to off-campus living. “Although sometimes it is scary to live by yourself, I am afraid people are going to break in. Some keys in the buildings work to other apartments. I was sitting with one of my friends watching a movie and a couple of girls opened my door before they realized it wasn’t their apartment. So sometimes it’s really scary,” Aileen said. However, the pros outweigh the cons for this Mercer student. For information on renting one of the Washington Square Apartments, search Facebook.

Plan your life around Alicia’s unreliable horoscopes Taurus (4/20 - 5/20) Happy birthday, Taurus! You seem to be having some health issues currently, which are likely caused by stress. Even through finals, you need to be getting plenty of sleep and to drink lots of water. Begin taking vitamins. They will increase your immunity and make your skin gorgeous. Single? Go bowling. Attached? Slow dance. Lucky Days: April 30, May 6 and 13. Unlucky Days: May 1, 8 and 10. Gemini (5/21 - 6/21) For a little bit of extra cash, Gemini, you need to start thinking creatively as well as entrepreneurially. Start a lemonade stand, make jewelry out of stuff you find on the street or pose as an astrologer. (Trust me, it works.) Single? Don’t gauge your ears too much. People will think you’re tacky. Attached? Go to a community pool and start a game of Marco Polo. Whoever hides the longest wins. Loser buys pizza. Lucky Days: April 28, May 5 and 9. Unlucky Days: May 1, 6 and 13.

Cancer (6/22 - 7/22) Always check your tarantula’s mood before feeding it or changing its water, or your hand could become its lunch, Cancer. Single? Your soul mate will be at the Dulcimer Release Party at the Golden Bough on the night of Wednesday, May 4. He or she will be wearing blue. Attached? Become pen pals over the summer, and always send pictures. Lucky Days: May 3, 9 and 11. Unlucky Days: April 28, May 7 and 15. Leo (7/23 - 8/22) You need to do some soul searching, Leo. Meditate, start a dream journal and try new types of art. (When’s the last time you made a sculpture, anyway?) Settle down with a book of Emily Dickinson or Pablo Neruda’s poetry and make a list of the metaphors that really affect you. Try to invoke these images for your art. Single? Carry a first-aid kit with you. Always. Attached? You guys should cuddle. Lucky Days: May 2, 7 and 10. Unlucky Days: May 4, 9 and 11.

Virgo (8/23 - 9/22) You will find yourself with an unfortunate sunburn this week, Virgo. Trust in the time-honored treatment for sun blisters: rub mayonnaise all over the irritated skin. Do NOT add salt. Single? There’s no time like the present to start using a voodoo doll. Your foes deserve comeuppance. Attached? Go out for Vietnamese together. Lucky Days: May 2, 8 and 9. Unlucky Days: May 1, 7 and 12. Libra (9/23 - 10/23) Luck is shining on you right now, Libra. You’re in for a lovely few weeks, but you need to remember to be kind to the less fortunate. Many of your friends are stressed and miserable right now, and your lucky streak is likely to make them envious. Single? Run, don’t walk, to Church’s Chicken. Attached? Plan a surprise day for your significant other. Wake him or her up early to start the day. Don’t be afraid to leave the state. Lucky Days: May 3, 9 and 16. Unlucky Days: April 30, May 2 and 7.

Scorpio (10/24 - 11/21) Regrets from your past are flooding your memory right now, Scorpio. You must learn to forgive yourself and to learn from your mistakes. If you feel like you need (or you left someone needing) closure, do no be afraid to begin a dialogue. Single? Play truth or dare with your friends. Attached? It’s summer! Break up! Lucky Days: April 29, May 3 and 14. Unlucky Days: May 2, 5 and 10. Sagittarius (11/22 - 12/21) Trust no one, Sagittarius. You’re not paranoid. They’re out to get you. Don’t readily volunteer any information about yourself to strangers until the middle of May. Single? Attend the Dulcimer Release Party on the night of Wednesday, May 4. Wear blue. Attached? Go pick strawberries together, and then make a cobbler with them. (If you don’t cook well, just dip them in sugar or melted chocolate.) Lucky Days: May 2, 6 and 9. Unlucky Days: May 3, 8 and 11.

Capricorn (12/22 - 1/19)

Pisces (2/19 - 3/20)

Make sure to clean all the dirt from beneath your nails, Capricorn. A surprising amount of attention will soon be paid to your hands, and dirty nails will illicit unfortunate judgment.

Drink nothing but pineapple juice for the next two weeks, Pisces, and your pee will smell wonderful. (I don’t want to frighten you, but soon the smell of your pee will not go unnocticed.)

Single? Make sure to wear your nice underwear if you go downtown. Attached? You guys should probably hit up a health clinic, fast. Lucky Days: May 4, 8 and 11. Unlucky Days: April 28, May 6 and 9.

Single? If your friends have eggs in their refridgerators, hard-boil all of them when they aren’t paying attention. Attached? Mini-golf time! Lucky Days: May 1, 5 and 10. Unlucky Days: April 30, May 3 and 15.

Aquarius (1/20 - 2/18) Daydreaming is healthy, Aquarius, but you must remember to ground yourself in reality. Your imagination can prevent you from taking care of your priorities. Now, imagine penguins getting tickled. Single? Brush up on your French. You’re going to need it. Attached? Make a nice card for your significant other’s mother and mail it to her. Anonymously. When she mentions it, act clueless. Lucky Days: May 7, 10 and 14. Unlucky Days: April 29, May 2 and 5.

Aries (3/21 - 4/19) Don’t do meth, Aries. Not even once. No one thinks they’ll lose their virginity in an icky bathroom. Meth will change that. No one thinks they’ll spend a romantic evening in a jail cell. Meth will change that. No one thinks they will finish all their papers before they are due. Meth will change that. Single? No one will think lowly of you for crying. Attached? Go fishing together. Even if you don’t catch anything, it’ll be fun. Lucky Days: May 2, 8 and 12. Unlucky Days: May 3, 5 and 10.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 7


NPR personality Diane Roberts Students plan for the summer, charms crowd with radio ‘bits’ use programs to improve lives By Rebecca Reed Staff Writer

By Liz Bibb Co-editor in chief


Diane Roberts read two pieces from her NPR broadcasts and a selection from a novel she is writing on Monday, April 11. The crowd laughed along with her has she found Krispy Kreme doughnuts in the most expensive store in London. She entertained the audience with her writing and telling about the history of her family. The creative non-fiction writer later answered a few questions. Cluster: What’s your educational background? (Undergrad, grad school, etc.) Roberts: I have a B.A. and an M.A. (in creative writing) from FSU. Then I got a Marshall Scholarship to go to Oxford University in England, so I then got a second B.A. in English and a Ph.D. in literature. My first job was at Oxford teaching English Lit. I lived in England for 10 years total. C: Where is your hometown, and what was it like to grow up there? R: I was born in Tallahassee — my family hs lived in the vicinity since the 1830s and in Florida since 1799. I love Tallahassee, probably because I left it for a long time. I lived in England, then I got a job at the University of Alabama where I taught for 14 years. Finally I decided I wanted to go home — I write about Florida for newspapers and my last book, Dream State, is also about Florida, so I got a job at FSU. Tallahassee has the most beautiful springtime of anywhere in the world. C: What made you want to become a writer? R: I like to tell stories. And I feel it’s my job to tell stories about “lost worlds,” to remember things that are in danger of being forgotten, like how it was to live without cell phones and computers! I also want to tell about places that might be destroyed. If you can tell the story of a place — a forest, a town, a building — then it’s much harder for somebody to tear

Rebecca Reed / Cluster Staff

Diane Roberts is a broadcaster for NPR, a professor at FSU and a published nonfiction author. Also, she’s really cute. it down and turn it into a strip mall or parking lot. Maybe this is a particularly Florida problem! C: What writers inspire you? Are there any who terrify you? R: Lots of writers inspire me: Thomas Pynchon, Herman Melville, Charlotte Bronte, John Milton. William Faulkner both inspires and terrifies me! C: What is your favorite thing to write about? R: Politics! I love writing snarky newspaper columns about politicians I think are doing bad things. C: What inspires you to write? R: Anger, usually. But also love. I’ve just finished a novel about Oxford, a place I love like no other. I was there with people who are still so important to me. And the beauty of the place is imprinted on my brain.

C: Where do you like to write? R: I like best to write on my very big, old dining room table here in Tallahassee. The table seats 14 people, so I have lots of room to spread out. I invite people over to dinner not only because I like to cook and I like to see my friends, but to make me clean off the table every once in a while! But, truth be told, I can write almost anywhere — on trains, on planes, whatever. I think I learned this skill by having to write in newsrooms. I used to work at the St. Petersburg Times newspaper and you couldn’t just go off somewhere and work; you had to do it with all this noise and activity around you. It’s good discipline. C: Do you like to keep a daily journal? R: No — I’m too lazy!

When I set out to write an article about Mercer students’ plans for the summer, I definitely had high expectations. I know that Mercer students are ambitious, adventurous world-travellers who, for the most part, would not be content spending a summer staring at a television in between sessions of baking in the sun next to a pool. (For the record, after the semester I’ve had, this summer option is looking more and more appealing every day.) But Mercer students who volunteered their plans for my story exceeded my expectations. The students I spoke with are using their summers to work with causes that are important to them and to take steps towards bright futures. Sophomore Emily Garrott is moving back to Macon on May 14-15 after overseeing the unveiling of a project she’s been working on in Washington DC since January. Garrott participated in George Washington University’s Semester

in Washington journalism program this past semester, where she took two classes at GWU and had an internship with the Department of the Interior. This summer, she’ll be taking two summer classes and working long-distance with her boss in DC to finalize her project. Garrott will also be working with WordPress to promote her personal brand, something she spent a lot of time talking about in DC. “I’m adding every video I’ve ever contributed or produced, every filmed interview, and all of my professional and published photographs…along with every article I’ve written for The Cluster,” she said. She hopes to work with FinalCutPro to improve her editing skills, something she wants to bring to the table when she assumes her position as online editor for The Cluster in the fall. Garrott hopes to spend time studying other social marketing sites and what makes them so popular so that she can learn how to better market herself. Junior Chelsey McDade will be working in the south of Spain this summer with missionaries who work with refugees coming from Africa. She is going on the trip with the

Emily Garrott/ Cluster Staff

Emily Garrott spent the semester in Washington, D.C. She had class and an internship with the Department of the Interior.

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, a nonprofit organization that raises money to send missionaries around the United States and the world. She learned about the program from her father, who works for the CBF. McDade said she has always loved mission work and Spain and has been looking for an opportunity like this for a long time. Although she is nervous about being out of the country alone for two months, McDade is excited to go and to hopefully perfect her Spanish. As a Global Health major, junior Amiee Frutchey, who plans to get a master’s degree as a physician’s assistant, has been accepted as a Global Health Fellow intern for Unite For Sight, a nonprofit organization that supports eye clinics worldwide. For the internship, Frutchey will be volunteering in Ghana, Africa, working directly with patients in the field. Frutchey will spend a month of her summer assisting eye clinics to screen for eye disease, implementing education programs and coordinating sight-restoring surgery for children and adults. Three days a week, she will travel to remote villages with local eye doctors to screen as many as 600 children and families for diseases related to eye care. To prepare for the trip, Frutchey has raised $1,700 that goes directly to funding surgeries and ensuring no one remains blind due to lack of funds. She has also collected 500 eyeglasses that she will be bringing to donate. Frutchey said she is extremely proud to be a Unite For Sight volunteer. If these students’ stories have inspired you to spice up your summer, allow me to make a recommendation. It is possibly too late to sign up for most of these trips, but I cannot stress highly enough how absolutely mindblowingly amazing Mercer on Mission is. If you can’t go this summer, go next summer. Seriously. Best thing you’ll ever do.

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The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 8

Entertainment Editor Eric Brown


Here’s a Bearstock Wrap-Up By Eric Brown Entertainment Editor

The night before Bearstock, Macon was threatened by a tornado warning that could have ruined the day. But we were lucky, and the storm passed over Macon with little commotion, leaving the day free for Mercer’s annual musical festival. This year featured a lineup similar to previous years, with rappers playing alongside established rock groups and local bands. It was a pretty great show all around. I have to admit, I come from a bit of a different musical background than most of the bands that played at Bearstock. I spent my high school years in rundown venues, seeing mostly terrible local punk bands with the hope of catching the occasional gem buried underneath all the unoriginal acts I sat through. So I’ve grown to be a bit...discerning with my music. I tend to expect perfection or nothing at all, and I admit that while that attitude occasionally gives me a critical advantage, it doesn’t always make me fun at concerts. Atlanta-based pop-rock act The Less delivered a set full of mostly cookie-cutter modern rock songs, including a cover of Coldplay’s hit “Yellow.” Just a thought, but if you’re going to rip off a band you probably shouldn’t cover their songs alongside your “originals.” It lets the audience know exactly how much better the first band is. I know I’m being harsh, but I was just hoping for more originality throughout their set. I guess you can’t always get what you want, especially when what you want is entertaining, downtempo rock. Still, what are you gonna do? The answer is: wait until the next band, Jubee and the Morning After, comes onstage and absolutely rule their set. The crowd really gathered together around the time Jubee started their set. Before that I saw mostly high school

kids and families looking for a relaxing time, but by the time Jubee started their set everybody seemed to show up. Jubee and the Morning After is one of the most overlooked bands in Macon, but they certainly weren’t overlooked at Bearstock. They delivered an exciting, genre-bending set that surprised anyone unfamiliar with their sound: a combination of rap, rock, funk and many more genres that, by all rights, should never work. And yet it does with this band. I suspect that they’ll have to be moved off the B stage next year, because the crowd was absolutely swarming them. I look forward to the band getting more publicity in the coming year. If you get a chance to see them soon, go. It’s an experience that no other band can bring, let alone any in Macon. After Jubee’s set, Bearstock mainstay Ocean is Theory took the stage as they debuted songs from their upcoming full length on Razor & Tie records. I’ve followed the band since they were an up-and-coming local act in the Marietta area, and they get better every time I see them. After a few lineup changes, they seem to have found a stable roster that allows for an increased flexibility. I’m seriously excited for their upcoming record and you should be, too. I have to be honest, I wasn’t sure what to think of the headliners Roscoe Dash and 3OH!3 when they were announced, but I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by their performances. And, if I can add, they’re all pretty awesome dudes, as evidenced by my interview immediately to the right of this article. They really surprised me with the amount of passion they brought to their sets. In years past, some Bearstock bands have phoned in their performances, lipsyncing and generally making no effort to really engage the crowd beyond the level needed to secure their paychecks. It was really different this year. Both Roscoe Dash and 3OH!3 brought a tangible stage presence to the show

Roscoe Dash delivered an amazingly energetic performance, cycling through songs off his new record Ready Set Go! as well as his well-known singles such as “All the way Turnt Up.” 3OH!3 isn’t exactly known for deep, introspective songs that explore the depths of the human condition. Instead they deliver some intentionally over-the-top party anthems that translate incredibly well to a live setting. When the beat to “House Party” is that loud, can you really concentrate on anything besides dancing your ass off? Their songs are infectiously catchy and, above all else, fun. All I can really say about my preconceptions is that I wasn’t expecting to be drawn into their set, and yet I was. I suppose the language of parties knows no boundaries, borders or genres, and in the end we all speak it fluently. I always go to Bearstock expecting something different from what I get. Maybe I’m too used to seeing small punk shows where it’s possible to chill with the band afterwards. Maybe my adolencese full of death metal, hardcore and pretentious indie rock left me a bit jaded to other types of music, but no matter your musical background, there’s always something about a crowd chanting “One more song!” at the top of their lungs. In the end, isn’t that all that matters? That the fans had a blast? That the music was loud, energetic and, most importantly, fun? No matter what, the kids had a damn good time, and I’m not one to argue with that. If the music isn’t exactly your thing, don’t worry about it. People out there are having fun with it, and they’re most likely enjoying themselves more than any would-be critic standing in the corner with his arms crossed. Sorry if this article turned out to be more of a confessional than you expected. At some point, objective journalism doesn’t quite cut it for entertainment stories. Everyone who hears a record, sees a concert or watches a film experiences it in his or her own way. This was mine.

Noah Maier / Cluster Staff

Josh Williams of Ocean is Theory performs songs off the band’s upcoming record at Bearstock.

Q&A: 3OH!3 Boulder, Colorado-based band 3OH!3 is known for their intense electronic sound and catchy, fun lyrics. Before the duo of Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte took the stage at Bearstock this year, I sat down to ask them a few questions about Mercer, their music and their upcoming work. Read on below.

Eric Brown: So how has Mercer been treating you so far? Sean Foreman: Good, man. We got in pretty early so we’re trying to catch up on a little sleep, ‘cause we’ve been playing shows every night in a row. But I walked down the street and got coffee at Jittery Joe’s. It’s a cool area, with the Barnes and Noble and everything. It’s just beautiful. We sat on the lawn and watched a couple of bands play. It’s a nice campus. EB: Thanks. So, where have you guys been playing recently? SF: Well, last night we played at Rutgers in New Jersey. The night before that we were... where was that? Nathaniel Motte: I can’t believe it was only two days ago. We were in Erie, Pa., playing at Penn State. This is towards the end of it, but we’ve been doing college shows all spring. It’s

Cancelled TV you will love By Kathleen Quinlan News Editor

Okay, nerds. I’ve spent all our time together telling you what not to like, but now that it’s all coming to an end, I’m going to tell you what to like. Some of the greatest television shows are cancelled because not enough people watch them, which is really upsetting but unsurprising since we live in a world where more people watch Dancing With the Stars than 30 Rock. But enough with the negative, my nerds! So here it is: The list of the greatest shows that were cancelled before their time, but that you should watch anyway. Arrested Development: If you watched any of the shows I’m going to list, Arrested Development was probably it. This shortlived three-season show is possibly one of the greatest shows to ever hit the air. Hilarious and smart, Arrested Development is a show about a dysfunctional family whose business has fallen apart. This show has some of the best continuity jokes ever and it is the show that Michael Cera developed, well, every character he has played since. It’s awesome. Watch it. It’s on Netflix Instant. Firefly: Firefly is probably Joss Whedon’s best series (which I know is a bold statement considering Buffy, but this show just works better to me). It’s a space western that stars Nathan Fillion as Captain Mal Reynolds. There are only 14 episodes, but they’re all quality. It’s standard Joss Whedon: funny, sad, clever, poignant and filled with favorite character deaths. This is also on Netflix Instant and the film Serenity is also available. Party Down: A more recently cancelled show, Party Down starred Adam Scott (who currently plays Ben Wyatt on Parks and Recreation). Party Down follows a group of caterers who continually find themselves in disastrous situations. The show bounces between looking at the caterers and examining the people who are hosting the par-

ties. It’s hilarious with two seasons full of guest stars like J.K. Simmons, Kristen Bell and Ken Jeong. Netflix just brought the two seasons on the Instant lineup. Veronica Mars: Veronica Mars is just three seasons of awesome. Starring Kristen Bell as the witty teenage private eye, this modern day noir series makes a heroine out of a real, imperfect character. Who doesn’t love Kristen Bell? Really? Also, tons of guest stars fill this series: Paul Rudd, Adam Scott and Michael Cera. Two of the greatest sidekicks ever are created through this series — you’re going to love Wallace and Piz, trust me. This show is funny, dark and smart. Even though she sounds like a superhero, Veronica is just a regular girl. The same people who created Party Down worked on Veronica Mars. Check it out on Netflix Instant View. Pushing Daisies: A dark two-season fairy tale, Pushing Daisies stars Lee Pace and Kristin Chenoweth. Pace is the Pie Maker Ned who discovers he has the power to touch a dead body and restore it to life. The catch is that if the body stays alive for over y dies. Ned a minute,, someone else nearby brings hiss childhood love back to life but he ouch her again or else she will die cannot touch — again.. Heartbreakingly sweet and funny, Pushing Daisiess is a drama-comedy with a forensics twist. This title is also available on nstant. Netflix Instant. Better Off Ted: A satirical comedy, Better Off Ted looks at the American ce as a corworkplace emon. This porate demon. isn’t The Office, but it’s still pretty retty hilarious. Ted is the hero of the show, and keable guy he’s a likeable ks at Veridan who works Dynamics cs with some rs. Ted characters. rectly talks directly to you as he goess through t h e

episodes. Portia de Rossi stars as his uptight boss Veronica. Look, it’s just really hilarious. The scientists Phil and Lem are the best characters on a show filled with other great characters. Better Off Ted can be seen on Netflix Instant view. Dead Like Me: Created by the same guy who invented Pushing Daisies, Dead Like Me is a two-season show about a group of grim reapers in Seattle. The show stars Ellen Muth and Mandy Patinkin. I know it seems a little morbid with the grim reapers and all, but it’s not. It’s touching and funny. The main character George (Muth) is a little hard to handle at first, but if you stick with it she grows on you as she develops. Also, who doesn’t love Mandy Patinkin? Inigo Montoya can do no wrong. Do yourself a favor and skip out on the movie they made after the series got cancelled. It’s bad. Like, really bad. Dead Like Me can be seen on Netflix Instant. Aaron Sorkin’s Sports Night and Paul Feig/ Judd Apatow’s Freaks and Geeks are not available on Netflix Instant but they’re still definitely worth checking out. They were short-lived but brilliant. Do yourself a favor and watch these shows, my nerds!

been awesome. EB: So, are you guys working on any new material right now? SF: Yeah, we’re trying to juggle a couple things right now. He lives in Colorado and I live in LA, and we’re on the road a lot, but we make it work and we’re hoping to get an EP out by early to midsummer. We’ve been working on those songs and it’s been going really well. I’m stoked about those songs. EB: How does that work, with you two being in different states? SF: Honestly, it doesn’t make any difference at all. Any other situation might be a problem, but we see each other so much anyway. Probably 300 days out of the year. NM: Yeah. Days off are pretty few and far between, so we get a lot of work done. EB: What’s the new material sound like? SF: It’s, uh, I don’t know. When we were working on the last album we had a few songs that we held off for this EP because they didn’t quite fit the mold for Streets of Gold, but they work now. It’s more production heavy, with some cool new songs. It’s more realized. Streets of Gold has a couple different sounds on it, but this is more coherent.


Bootsy Collins — Funk Capitol of the World Explosions in the Sky — Take Care... Holy Ghost! — Holy Ghost! of Montreal — Thecontrollersphere Times New Viking — Dancer Equired


Architecture In Helsinki — Moment Bends Beastie Boys — Hot Sauce Committee Part 2 Colbie Caillat — All Of You dredg — Chuckles And Mr. Squeezy Fleet Foxes — Helplessness Blues

MAY 10

The Antlers — Burst Apart Man Man — Life Fantastic Okkervil River — I Am Very Far Sleepy Vikings — They Will Find You Here This Will Destroy You — Tunnel Blanket

MAY 17

Danger Mouse & Daniel Luppi — Rome Egypt Central — White Rabbit Lil Wayne — Tha Carter IV Moby — Destroyed Ruth Gerson — Decieved

MAY 24

Art Brut — Brilliant! Tragic! Boris — Heavy Thoughts Fireworks — Gospel Lady Gaga — Born This Way Thurston Moore — Demolished Thoughts Eric Brown / Cluster Staff

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 9


Hummingbird’s annual bash By Eric Brown Entertainment Editor

Even before they hosted this year’s annual Big Bird Bash, I already thought that The Hummingbird was one of the coolest places in downtown Macon. It has great drink specials, a relaxed atmosphere, and great music from both DJs and live bands. It’s a fantastic place in every way. Now, after their all-day showcase of some of Macon’s greatest musicians, I’m absolutely convinced. This year marked The Hummingbird’s second Big Bird Bash, a celebration of the city’s local talent. The show began and noon and featured food, drinks and, of course, a wide and consistently awesome selection of local artists ranging from the down and dirty blues sound of Broken Bootstraps to the experimental rock artistry of Mag Tard. Of course, it wasn’t just a fun time. Proceeds from the night went to the Central Georgia CASA, an organization that benefits children suffering from abuse and neglect. It’s good to know that all of the fun is in support of a fantastic cause as well. The day started out strong

with Barry Darnell and the Mobile Slim Band playing their unique combination of blues and funk-inspired rock. After their sound provided a perfect opener for the festivities, singer-songwriter Louise Warren followed them up. As the day went on, audiences were treated to sets by The Vineyard, Broken Bootstraps, Chelsea Hughes, and more before Gringo Grande ended the night. The variety of artists was tuly impressive, and the venue managed to pack the house with fans of country, blues, and rock. I was most impressed with Mag Tard’s set. The fourpiece rock band incorporates a saxaphone into their sound, making for a unique experience. The energetic band even dropped in a cover of The Ramones’ “Blitzkreig Bop.” The song has been covered so many times that it’s hard to make any take on it sound original, but Mag Tard’s melodic guitars and saxaphone managed to put a fresh spin on the beloved classic. I’ve always been a big advocate of Mercer students becoming more involved in Macon affairs. Whenever I go to shows at the 567 or the Golden Bough, I hardly ever see Mercerians there. Unless, that is, they came with me.

Eric Brown / Cluster Staff

Macon’s Mag Tard performs at The Hummingbird’s second Big Bird Bash on Saturday, April 23. The band’s set consisted of bothoriginals and covers, including The Ramones’ “Blitzkreig Bop.” Bands such as Broken Bootstraps, Chelsea Hughes also played. I just don’t get it. But hey, maybe Mercer kids aren’t the most fond of some of Macon’s more experimental acts. I can understand that, but The Big

Bird Bash is the perfect opportunity for Mercer students to engage in the local community. Heck, the only places I ever see Mercer students

downtown is at bars, anyway. You’d think more students would be all over an awesome all-day concert. If you’re reading this right now, and

you never attend concerts in Macon, stop it. Head out and get connected with your community. I promise, you won’t regret it at all.

Ace and Zaz bring stellar full-length By Kathleen Quinlan News Editor

4/5 Bear Claws

Augusta natives Robert Payne and Chase Kleist are part of the indie/alternative/hip-hop group Ace and Zaz. Chase is Ace and Robert is Zaz. After being part of several musical groups in high school, including Smells Like New and Non-Shalant (Acoustic), Kleist and Payne created this project that just features them. The best part of Ace and Zaz is that they are not what you expect when you hear “rap group.” Payne is studying to be a biomedical engineer at the University of Georgia and Kleist is a professional webmaster. They are also rappers who don’t listen to rap. “The radio is pitiful and we decided to do something about it,” said Payne, also known as Zazu

Times Two. “The other groups were a learning experience and our current music project encompasses them all.” The pair has a following of 10,000 fans on their various social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, MySpace). They have performed live web shows, small Augusta and Athens venues and house parties. Ace and Zaz has also received multiple cash prizes for talent showcase contests and interest from minor record labels. The new album Fancy Dress recently dropped and has earned over 400 downloads from their website, available for free to all site visitors. According to Payne, the time to make the album took “three months worth of man hours, but with procrastination more than double that.” Fancy Dress has 11 tracks and is 29 minutes long. It is self-created and produced. Fancy Dress begins with an introduction to the group and website promotion as well as some thank yous. It’s pretty clear that this project is more serious than

their past endeavors. The tracks have danceable beats, clever lyrics and an impressive DIY quality. There is a certain aspect to the album that makes it seem like an impulsive recording, as if the pair was just messing around in their room and decided to record something. It’s very informal and fun despite the album’s name. The best track is probably “Cage the Elegance”, with its different and welcomed instrumental introduction and sound quality. Also, the lyrics are just really great. The album closes with the same style as it opens. Payne introduces himself and tells you to enjoy yourself before moving into his song which breaks throughout with dialogue. The sound quality and background music is also top notch on this track. This song is very similar to the style of the Childish Gambino (Community’s Donald Glover). You can check out the duo at, where they upload songs, videos and their to-do list.

Photo courtesy of Ace and Zaz

Unconventional Georgia-based rap act Ace and Zaz recently released their record Fancy Dress.

“I Love” Mercer Players’ latest live performance

A golden age for music By Jonathan Popham Columnist

It seems like without thinking about it, I’ve got a theme going with this column, and it has served me well so far, but it is time to finish this arc. I’ve discussed that musicians aren’t getting compensated for the music that they are making and that record labels aren’t doing anything to protect them. I like to give the bad news first. Here is the good news: we have just entered a golden age for music. Openness is the answer. Nowadays, if you have a decent idea, good execution, and an Internet connection, you can get your music heard. Because of this there is more music being made and heard right now than at any other time in history. Sure, this means that there will be more unlistenable music than ever before; however, there will also be some really incredible works. As I have said before, it is all about the money. Music has never been cheaper to make. With practically no overhead, anyone can be known worldwide. Gone is the day that an oligarchy of CEOs decide what should be distributed. Never before has there been a more direct connection between musicians and their au-

diences. The middleman has been cut, and I for one welcome our new technophile overlords. This isn’t just a DIY movement. This isn’t about garage bands using Garage Band. This is working for the some of the most popular acts on the planet. Bands like Radiohead, OK Go, Pretty Lights and Girl Talk are achieving g world renown on their own accord. Kids in Dubai are cruising the vista to Fleet Foxes and Middle-aged Maconites are getting pumped to Eurodance. Music has a bright

future, as long as it remains free to share, free to make and free to listen to. Movements in music happen so fast that it makes your head spin. To quote a friend of mine, Dubstep is already old. It’s a beautiful thing, really. It harkens back to the days in which minstrels would frolic around the countryside singing about what they y saw and felt. The only thing that is consistent is change. And certainly, the times are a-changing. I bet they would have loved to have had back in the day. Imagine if

the Beatles had Twitter. “All access show on the roof!” from @PaulJohnGeorgenRingo. Music is about birth. Birth is impressive, but rebirth is better. Music is rising like a phoenix from the ashes of 90s pop it a blaze of glory so brilliant it is like a second sunrise. I’m sure that I’m not the only one that is glad that boy bands are dead. Boy y bands are dead,, and LogicPro killed them. Rejoice, my friends! Rejoice!

By Brittani Howell Copy Editor

The Mercer Players outdid themselves with their most recent performance, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change. The musical’s two-week run kept audiences packing out the theater and rolling in the aisles as the Players revealed everything you ever wanted to know about love and marriage but were afraid to ask. I Love You is told through a series of vignettes depicting different couples at various points in their romantic relationships. Some directors cast a different set of actors for each scene, of which there are about twenty. Director Scot Mann’s decision to keep an ensemble of ten cast members allowed his Players to show off their versatility as each actor had the challenge of juggling three or four completely different roles. Not only did the actors manage to balance their roles without undergoing identity crises, but they kept each of their characters distinct and memorable. Watching sophomore Suzanne Stroup and fifth-year senior Isaac Callahan appear as middle-aged parents disgruntled at their son’s breakup, only to completely transform into two young parents scrambling to find time for their sex life, was delightful and hilarious. Speaking of hilarity, I know that my diaphragm literally hurt during the show because I was laughing so hard. The Players aced the comedic aspect of this performance. During a comedy

the actor’s biggest challenge is keeping a straight face when he knows the line he says is going to get a laugh. The cast of I Love You had this down to a science, and their delivery carried the comedy brilliantly. Another challenge in performing a comedy is getting the timing right, and the actors carried out this too with excellence. Their energy in the show was also remarkable. I saw the closing matinee of the show on April 17, and although I’m sure the Players were tired after two weeks of performing they didn’t show it at all. They carried the show with energy and enthusiasm right up to the curtain call. I found the vocals in the show to exceed my expectations. I knew that some of the cast members did not have much of a background in singing, but I was pleasantly surprised at how good the cast sounded as a whole. I have to give credit, though, to the ladies of the cast; their beautiful voices really carried the musical numbers. Having said all of this, I have to admit that the most impressive aspect of the Players’ performances in I Love You is the range of emotions they covered. The purely comedic scenes such as “Satisfaction Guaranteed” and “Scared Straight” yielded beautifully to the sweetness of Monica Titus’ solo “I Will Be Loved Tonight” and Callahan’s “Shouldn’t I Be Less in Love with You.” I have heard several people say that this musical was the best show they have seen the Mercer Players perform, and I have to say that I wholeheartedly agree. I loved it, it was almost perfect and I wouldn’t change a thing.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 10

Around Campus Editor Rebecca Payne

Around Campus

Small town bakery, big city taste By Alicia Landrum Features Editor

Amanda’s Cakery, located on downtown Macon’s Cotton Avenue, recently opened. Patrons can order designer cakes from the bakery and cupcakes are available on a daily basis. The business is owned by cake artist Amanda Meadows, a Macon State graduate, who said, “Our grand opening was March 24, so it was the weekend of Cherry Blossom, but I’ve been baking since 2005. This is our first store front, so we’re really excited.” Meadows explained that though the store has been open for only a little longer than a month, the cakery already is booked with orders for cakes through early June. For those interested in pur-

chasing a cake from Amanda’s Cakery, Meadows says, “Just call, or e-mail, Facebook us.” Amanda’s Cakery specializes in baking and decorating personalized cakes for all occasions, although Meadows explained that the shop’s largest clientele is female. She said, “Often it’s the bride who comes in, or the mother of the bride.” Even though many of the cakes made at Amanda’s Cakery are wedding cakes, she says, “We can do a cake for any occasion. Graduation, birthdays, weddings, anything.” The wildest cake that Meadows has made thus far was a surprise for the groom of a wedding in Atlanta. The cake was in the shape of a KISS boot, and it had over 100 components. “You can tell it was well made because they transported it all the way to Atlanta and no parts came off,” Mead-

ows said. Meadows said she did not always plan to be a cake artist. “I was actually a waitress at a semi-fine dining restaurant called The Back Burner off Ingleside. I just needed to pay for tuition and I replied to an ad online — an expired ad — and called. She said the position had already been filled, but I was persistent and got the job. Little did I know then that it would be my career now.” If anyone is planning their special day, Meadows explains, “We do complimentary consultations with cake tasting for weddings. It’s always exciting to meet the bride and the groom, and there aren’t too many bridezillas. They’re very happy.” “My favorite kind of cake to make is an easy cake,” Meadows said with a laugh. Meadows began work as a cake artist as an apprentice,

but, tragically, the woman under whom she was apprenticing was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Meadows said, “She passed away in 2007. I remember the wedding cake I delivered on the day that she died.” Meadows explained that soon after the death of her mentor, she was faced with even greater hardships. She said, “In April, the bakery burned to the ground, and in one day I had to go buy all the supplies to do five weddings, plus some birthday cakes and stuff, and then we had to find another location. There was a church that let us use their kitchen, and then we used an abandoned restaurant here downtown. Then we found this place.” The hours for Amanda’s Cakery are 11:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays. The bakery is closed Sundays and Mondays.

Alicia Landrum/ Cluster Staff

Macon’s newest bakery, Amanda’s Cakery, opened last month and offers a variety of speciality cakes and cupcakes. Amanda’s Cakery is located at 321 Cotton Avenue, right next to the music store. Like them on Facebook, call (478)-

738-9504 or visit them online at their website:

professorspotlight: Scot Mann By Brittany Dant Staff Writer brittany.marie.dant

Mercer Communications and Theater Arts professor Scot Mann takes pride in his students, his career and the fact that he bleeds Mercer orange. This is Mann’s fifth year teaching at Mercer. His classes include: Acting, Directing, Playwriting, Theater History and Stage Combat. Raised in Griffin, Ga., Mann completed his undergraduate study right here at Mercer before attending a university in Alabama for graduate school. After that, his life became a blur of exciting places and experiences. “I was a student here, then for 15 years I was a freelance actor and freelance fight coordinator. I had a strong interest in martial arts, which got me into stage combat, which really

propelled my career,” Mann said. “I got to work everywhere: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago. I was based out of Atlanta but I also traveled to London, India and Germany. It’s a wild profession and you never know what’s going to happen. You just have to go with the opportunities,” Mann added. Mann eventually settled into a teaching career at Southern Mississippi, where he taught for three years before coming to Mercer. “When this job opened up, I applied for it immediately. It made me feel like I was coming home. Actually coming back and taking the reins from my predecessor was very appealing to me,” Mann said. Since returning to Mercer, Mann has married his wife Kelly — who is also an actor and stunt performer — and enjoys spending time with his preteen daughter, Madeline. In his spare time Mann choreographs stage combat for

Graduate takes job with Department of Defense, analyzes submarines By Rebecca Payne Around Campus Editor

Cameron Kunzelman/Cluster Staff

Scott Mann, professor of Theater, is a Mercer alum. He is trained in stage combat and has worked all over the country. theaters in the Atlanta area and teaches at professional seminars. If he can squeeze it in, he works in television or film shoots.

By Hannah Greene Staff Writer

Photo courtesy of Abby Feine

Abby Feine is a 2010 graduate of Mercer. She is now living in Arlington, Va. She performs logistical analysis on submarines for the U.S. Department of Defense in Washington, D.C. be an engineer one day,” she said. While at Mercer, Feine was an active sister of the Chi Omega Fraternity. She is originally from Saint Marys, Ga. and is currently living in Arlington, Va. Feine encourages students to look for positions now. “Get a contact! Ask everyone you know who might potentially have a contact that could help. Look further than just Georgia. Even though some of us might not want to admit this, there is life outside of those Georgia lines.” When asked about her dream job, Feine said she didn’t have a particular one. “I feel like I’m actually doing something important. But even though I love my job, if money wasn’t an issue, I’d drop everything and buy a plane and fly to the middle of nowhere and take pictures for the rest of my life.”

ed and gifted students involved in the program, and this is a really strong community. At larger universities it is hard to get to know the students. With 160 theater art students there were great students, but I had no time to spend with them,” Mann said. While Mann admits that his students are the best part of teaching he expects his students to work hard and enjoy acting. “They have to have creative expression. They need passion for what they are doing if they want to make an acting career happen. The most important thing is to enjoy acting. If not, why would you do this?” Mann said. While Mann is proud of every play he has directed here, he admits that there is memory that holds a special place in his heart. “My proudest moment was the first time I had one of my students graduate,” Mann said.

what’syourmajor? History


For students who think a degree won’t land you a job in this economy, think again. Abby Feine, a 2010 graduate of Mercer, is currently working in Washington, D.C., with Strategic Systems Progams, a part of the Department of Defense, where performs logistical analysis on submarines. Feine graduated from Mercer with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering with a minor in photography. During her sophomore year of college, a neighbor provided Feine with a flyer advertising a summer hire program with the government in Kings Bay, Ga. She now works for the company full time. She said, “I will stay at this job until I stop wanting to wake up and come to work every morning. I have a job I love and I’m living in our nation’s capitol.” Her position also allows for travel and this is something she has enjoyed tremendously. “I’m from small town, so it’s fun and exciting to be taking week trips to California or Indiana,” Feine said. Feine advises current students to take internships early and keep in touch with any contacts they make over the years. “I don’t care what people say; it always comes down to who you know,” she said. She believes that Mercer’s engineering school provided her with the background knowledge she needed to perform her day-to-day duties at work. Her favorite professor during her undergraduate studies was Richard Kunz. “It was in his class when I realized that I could actually grow up and

“I stay pretty busy outside of campus. I am the director of the majority of the plays performed at the Backdoor Theater. I love directing the shows.

It drives my day knowing that I am working towards rehearsal that night,” Mann said. During his time here Mann has tried to expand the Theater Arts program from a focus on theater to looking at the rest of the industry as well. “I have added film and television training. I have also added stage combat to the training because of the skill set. I am trying to make a stronger bridge into the professional industry,” Mann said. Mann tries to teach theater training from a practical angle while also inspiring enthusiasm for acting and behind the scenes work. “Acting is hard work. It is actual manual labor and I also try to teach my students to have confidence in themselves. If this is what they want to do, they should do it,” Mann said. Mann says that Mercer is by far his favorite of the places he has taught at so far in his career. “There are intelligent, talent-

For students who hold a fascination with the past, Mercer’s history department offers a program with classes highlighting a variety of topics. The department consists of six full-time historians: four European historians and two American historians. John Scott, one of the history department’s American historians, said the curriculum in the history department is designed for students to study the past through teaching as well as individual discovery. History classes at Mercer do not only consist of a lot of dates, names and memorization. History majors do take classes where they learn

about a specific topic in history, but classes are also taught to equip students to research and explore the past through personal historical projects. “Our main goals are to teach students how to think and how to communicate, especially through writing,” Scott said. “…The past is the area we explore…answering the questions ‘how and why did that happen?’ [and] communicating those answers through lively writing.” Even though history is a required subject beginning in grade school, professors constantly encounter students who are clueless on seemingly common historical facts. Scott has compiled an ongoing (and somewhat humorous) list of things he has encountered students do not know. This list includes Henry Clay, the Cold War and Roe v. Wade.

Senior history major Max Youngblood came to Mercer having always been interested in history. After taking a few classes, history seemed like a natural choice for a major. Youngblood chose European history as his concentration, with most of his classes focusing on modern Europe. An average history class format is not in the expected lecture and note-taking style. Youngblood describes his history classes as being “taught in the seminar format, demanding…knowledge of the reading. The seminar format also encourages a more cohesive classroom environment and the ability to verbally express ideas. Research papers [are] the history major’s specialty.” A common question asked to history majors is what they hope to do after college with a history degree. Scott defends

that history majors have a vast array of opportunities after college. “As a result of our emphasis on critical thinking and written communication, history majors are well prepared for almost any profession,” said Scott. “Some go to law schools while others go into teaching, medical fields, academia and business….Studying the past prepares you for any path to the future.” The history department often has a scary reputation among undergraduates who must take courses required for general education. Ali Wright, a sophomore psychology major, explains she was fearful upon enrolling in her required history course but was pleasantly surprised. “It was a lot of work, but the material was interesting and I am glad that I learned so much in the class,” she said.

A Halluva Auction to save the Halls By Rebecca Reed Staff Writer

For months, news has circulated about the possibility of Macon losing the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame to another, possibly bigger city in Georgia. While we may have kept the halls from being moved for now, there is still a chance that they may be lost. Now, though, there are more people in Macon backing them. On June 17, 2011, while most Mercer students are home for the summer or studying abroad, a Halluva Auction will take place downtown at the train station right next to the halls.

A Halluva Auction is an effort to save the halls because they are considering taking them out of Macon and placing them somewhere else in the state. The community groups in Macon have all collaborated to help with this. However, A Halluva Action is more than just about the halls; it is also to benefit the Cherry Blossom Festival and Newtown Macon. The auctions will help raise money for all three of these causes. There will be both a live auction and a silent one. There will also be an online auction held on their website, though it is currently not going on. One of the auction items includes a three-carat, emeraldcut Columbian emerald. The committee is also auctioning off vacation packages, fine art and one-of-a-kind experiences.

The top prize will be given in a reverse raffle. The tickets for the raffle are $100 and the participants have a chance to win $10,000. With only 400 tickets being sold, those aren’t bad odds. Purchasing a raffle ticket also means that you have entrance to the VIP party and the event for free. If you would like a raffle ticket, you can send an e-mail to to be placed on the call list. You can also go to the NewTown Macon Office to purchase a ticket — the address to the office is 479 Cherry Street. All tickets go on sale May 18. For the Goods and L.W. Benton Co. Auction and Realty are sponsoring the event. Tickets to get into the auction are $5 and can be purchased at

the door on June 17. You can learn more at There you can find contact information for the people hosting the event and learn about all the items up for auction. The website has a new item listed each day, so if you check back every day you will learn about more specific items being auctioned. The committee, as well as the board of directors for the program, is looking for any volunteers they can find. Students who happen to be taking summer classes would be of great use. If you wish to donate an item to the event, contact Laura Schofield at 478-321-8711. To learn more about volunteer opportunities for A Halluva Auction, please contact Laura at the number above.

Sports the third half

J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

Semi-Retired State of Mind I’m calling it quits, at least for the time being. It’s been a fun four years here on the staff, but it’s my time to go. The ownership wouldn’t pay me a big bonus and with all of this speculation floating around me concerning performance enhancing drugs (PEDs), it’s time for me to move on. I swear, I thought I was just putting Icy Hot or some type of Gold Bond lotion on my forearms, but what do you know, four years later I’m writing stories, columns and breaking reports at the same rate that Barry Bonds hit home runs and Lance Armstrong won Tour de Frances. To be honest, I feel pretty mentally beat up from all of this writing. I had a good season again, but it’s time to go back to the farm and mull things over before giving the ownership news of whether or not I’ll return next season. I know, you’re thinking here comes another Brett Favre, but I promise my first retirement will be my last…at least until my first comeback. It’s been a nice run here at Mercer, though, with former sports editor Jeremy Timmerman handing me the reigns after my sophomore year. We even had a ceremony to inaugurate my coming as the “next big sports columnist on staff’ as I told the rest of the media present, “Get your popcorn ready—it’s going to be awesome.” Hey, my columns were “popping” for a while. I correctly predicted the four Final Four teams and the NCAA tournament winner in March of 2008, said over a baseball broadcast that the Tampa Bay Rays would win the AL East in 2008 and have won plenty of sports bets for lunch at work, but I chalk it up to just

Photo courtesy of

Don’t cry for me Brett Favre, my retirement decision isn’t final yet. You gave us plenty of highlights on and off the field, so in following your footsteps, I’m going to retreat back to the farm to think about everything.

being knowledgeable about the game. As the clean-up hitter, I’ve watched plenty of good, mediocre, not-so-good and very talented writers move through the pages of the Cluster. That’s why I’m going into semi-retirement, albeit a forced one due to graduation. I feel confident with where the team is at, though, with a staff full of great writers, especially rookie Zach Wells. Where did this guy come from, relating his spring break trips to intramural softball and previous relationships to the men’s basketball teams’ achievements and struggles? Returning editor Samir Moussawel is an all-star, but we traded him to George Washington for the year. The owners said that it was for financial reasons, but I think they just needed some more cash on board to get another puzzle piece once I retired. I don’t like to speculate, but this might be another Cleveland Cavaliers situation. Both Wells and Moussawel are future Hall of Fame material and that’s why it makes sense for me to get out while I’m on top. Think about all the pros who outlasted their welcome. Joe Montana with the Chiefs? Michael Jordan with the Wizards? No sir, this writer’s pen stays with the team I helped build up, the Cluster. I’m sure Georgia Tech, Georgia, Georgia State, Emory and perhaps even Georgia Southern will all vie for my services. I’ll gladly take the steak and shrimp dinners, the dining and wining as it’s known in the business, but at the end of the day I’ve got to do what’s best for me and my family. And right now, I’m trying to take care of my legacy at the ripe age of 23 years old. I’ve got to give a ton of credit to Garret McDowell, the workhorse of the squad. He’s been a Scottie Pippen to me, or even a Chris Bosh. His best years are still ahead of him. I’m no Latrell Spreewell. Remember, he was the former NBA player who turned down a three-year, $21 million deal because he said that it wasn’t enough to feed his children. I’ve got plenty of Bear Bucks to eat on in the University Center, but I’m just tired of eating Chick-fil-A and Subway every week. I need to branch out a little bit, have a change of pace, that’s all. Don’t worry, I won’t be one of these superstars that just disappears off the face of the planet. No one saw Mark McGwire for five years after he retired, as well as many of the other sluggers of our generation. My approach will be more like that of Chad Ochocinco: trying out for a major league sports club other than his own. When the football star gave soccer a try last month, it got me to thinking about my versatility. Why not start something new? Whatever it is that I conjure up to try, you can guarantee that it’ll be more successful than Michael Jordan at minor league baseball. Even if it’s not, I’m sure ESPN will make a 30:30 documentary about it ten years from now with my closest buddies giving their recollections about my decision. Speaking of decisions, the television network turned down my offer to air my own decision of where to go to after graduation. So, I’ll say it here: I’m taking my talents to Chattanooga. I’ll be back for Homecoming, though.

Photo courtesy of

Everyone, like LeBron James, has to make decisions. We don’t always reap the benefits of getting our decisions televised, but who’s to say we shouldn’t have the ability? A whole class of college graduates are trying to figure out exactly where to “take their talents” now, due to LeBron.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 11

Sports Editor

J. Andrew Lockwood

Men’s golf finishes 4th in Atlantic Sun By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

Mercer’s men’s golf team recorded the lowest round of the Atlantic Sun tournament during Wednesday’s final round at the Chateau Elan Golf Club in Braselton, Ga., as they shot a combined 277 to move up the standings to finish fourth. Kennesaw State would capture their first conference tournament title by nine strokes over North Florida while Campbell would take third during the three-day tournament. “It was a fun day out there,” said head coach Andrew Tredway following the championship on “We got off to a hot start and then the guys finished it, which was so big for our programs,” he added. Fueling the move up the team standings during the final day of play was freshman Hans Reimers (T-2nd, 70-71-69) who came within three strokes of taking the individual tournament title. Josh Cone (T-17th, 72-74-70) would also put together a fantastic round for a five way tie for 17th, finishing at +3 for the tournament. “Josh Cone has been so steady all year—just a top 20 ma-

Photo courtesy of

Freshman Hans Reimers would finish in a tie for 2nd in his first Atlantic Sun tournament after three fantastic rounds below par. Reimers would fuel Mercer’s move from 8th to 4th in the team standings on the final day of play as the Bears concluded their 2011 campaign. chine,” added the head coach. “I’m confident that the NCAA committee will look favorably upon him and what he’s done. What I’m so proud of him for is his patience throughout the season. He could have really gotten frustrated at times but he just put his head down and kept going.” Reimer’s finish set a record

Photo courtesy of

Josh Cone finished 17th in the season finale A-Sun tournament, but head coach Andrew Tredway believes his regular season resume warrants consideration for entry into the NCAA tournament as an individual player.

for the best placement by a Mercer freshman at the event as well as a program best threeround score at the conference championship. “Hans really played well this week and really all spring,” Tredway commented. “He came into a new situation and made the most of his opportunity and that’s what it is all about. He’s such a hard worker and he could turn himself into a top tier player when it’s all said and done.” Teammates Matt Kocolowski (T-24th, 76-72-70) and Mookie DeMoss (T-31st, 81-72-68) would also contribute rounds below par with DeMoss posting the second lowest round of the day. Thomas Holmes (DNF, 76-DNF-78) would complete the first and third rounds after battling a case of food poisoning on Tuesday. After the final round Tredway was extremely complementary of Holmes’ effort despite his individual score not counting. Tredway said, “He was sick all week and he just kept grinding. He’s a true warrior and I want him with me in battle anytime.” Now that Mercer’s season is

“I’m confident that the NCAA committee will look favorably upon Josh Cone and what he’s done.”

Andrew Tredway, head golf coach complete Tredway will look to prep his returning golfers for next season, but Josh Cone will likely receive a bid to the NCAA Regionals to continue his 2010-11 individual season. If Cone is selected, he’ll be only the second player in school history in all sports to receive an at-large bid.

SECCC Championship rolls through Mercer, Tattnall Square Park in collegiate cycling finale By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

With the highest turnout in Southeastern Collegiate Cycling Conference history, Mercer Cycling successfully hosted the final race of the spring road season with a time trial, criterium and road race over the course of Saturday and Sunday. With nearly 155 riders and 23 schools in tow, Saturday morning’s time trial was delayed by an hour due to inclement weather. As soon as the weather passed over, the action got hot on the back roads of Twiggs County as the team time trials and individual time trials got under way. Racing as Mercer’s lone entry in the individual time trial, Andrew Lockwood would post the sixth fastest time in the Men’s B time trial that morning, averaging slightly less than 22 mph over the 17.5 mile course over rolling hills. Moving to the confines of Tattnall Square Park for Saturday afternoon’s criterium events, the spectators came out in droves to watch the five races of six categories zoom around the 0.7 mile loop with average speeds hovering between 25-28 mph for most of the afternoon. Sophomore Austin Sholly made the most of his showing in Men’s C criterium, controlling the race at points in route to sprinting to a 12th-place finish. Lockwood and teammate Gabe Denes would enter the Men’s B criterium with a competitive field that included stacked teams from Brevard College, Lees-McRae College and Florida State. After fighting for position in the mid-pack in the opening laps Lockwood would get stuck behind two riders who touched wheels, crashing and losing some skin in the process.

Alex Lockwood / Cluster Staff

A big wreck eight minutes into the Men’s B race scattered the field for several minutes. Crashing behind a Florida State and Lees-McRae rider, Andrew Lockwood (third from left) took a tumble on the pavement as did five other cyclists before re-entering the race. Taking the free lap that comes with a crash, the wheel pit mechanics worked on Lockwood’s bike and got him back in the race at the tail end of the peloton. Denes worked up front in the top positions halfway through the 45-minute ordeal as Lockwood would zoom by at the 30-minute mark to take 2nd in a points premium, but in terms of a final result the Mercer boys were outmatched by the likes of the schools with larger teams. Denes would take 14th while Lockwood came in

at 20th in the 33-man field. Elizabeth Lee, looking for a strong ride before her second consecutive nationals appearance in Madison, Wis., sat in the field for a majority of the Women’s A criterium and finished 7th at the field sprint. Sunday’s road race would prove to be the most challenging event of the weekend as the riders circled a 15.5-mile course, with several steep hills around the kaolin mines five miles from the city limits of Gordon, for several laps

Alex Lockwood / Cluster Staff

Mercer’s orange and black hosted the 2011 Championships. The conference saw a record turnout of cyclists and spectators during the two-day event.

depending on the length of their race. Austin Sholly rode another strong race, garnering 5th place in the Men’s B group while Elizabeth Lee would take 9th in the Women’s A race. Lockwood and Denes would round out the main field in the Men’s B race with 23rdplace and 21st-place finish respectively. With the SECCC Championship complete, Mercer Cycling turns their sights to three final events in the spring before their summer hiatus in which they will race individually. Athens Twilight (April 30), Historic Roswell Criterium (May 1) and the Macon State Championships (May 7) round out the team’s calendar for the spring season with the final race taking place around Tattnall Square Park. Hosted by the Georgia Neurological Institute Cycling team (also known as the “Spine Team”), the ProGold Georgia State Criterium Championship will bring another elite group of cyclists to Macon to compete for a state championship including Mercer Cycling’s best riders. For details on the state championship, refer to www.maconcyclingclassic. com.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 12


Baseball picks up second win over ranked Georgia Tech By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

It took them a while to break .500 in conference play, but Mercer’s baseball team seems to have broken through against A-Sun opponents after a threegame series sweep against Lipscomb this past weekend. Despite the big wins and their overall record that approaches nearly 30 wins on the season, the Bears still find themselves in a log jam to get into the postseason tournament. As of Sunday, Mercer looked to be the eighth seed if the regular season had ended. There’s good news, though, for head coach Craig Gibson and his talented squad. The schedule seems to soften a bit with away games against Winthrop, USC-Upstate and Georgia before their final home stand against Georgia State and ETSU. Mercer 8, Savannah State 4 The Bears snapped a threegame losing streak against the Tigers in a single game of nonconference action, with reliever Jacob Matthews picking up the victory. Both teams generated most of their offense early in the game, and Mercer’s threerun inning in the bottom of the fifth would seal the fate of the contest. A wild pitch, sacrifice fly from John Moreland and an RBI double from freshman second baseman DJ Johnson would give Mercer the 6-3 going into the sixth inning. Thomas Carroll would post another home run on the board early in the game but the key player of this game was John-

son, who pitched the final three innings to pick up the save while going 3-for-4 with an RBI from the plate. North Florida 7, Mercer 5 The Bears fell to the Ospreys for their fourth consecutive conference loss in the first of a three-game series in Jacksonville. Mercer started out strong with a home run from Jacob Tanis in the top of the first. His 41st career shot gave Mercer the early 2-0 lead, but a pair of hits in the bottom half of the inning doomed the orange and black and gave UNF a 3-2 lead. Mercer starter Brandon Love would settle in until the fifth inning when he would give up a solo home run, but the Bears’ offense remained nonexistent until the eighth inning when Austin Barrett would put a three-run homer over the fence in left-center field. UNF’s stout pitching late in the game would hold Mercer’s offense at bay to give the Ospreys their 11th conference win of the year. Mercer 11, North Florida 6 It was a home run derby for the Bears as they broke their conference losing streak with a five-run win during the first game of a Saturday afternoon doubleheader. The fireworks started in the first inning when Jacob Tanis, John Moreland and Billy Burns all took roundtrips to give MU the 5-0 lead. UNF’s own five-run outburst in the second inning would reel Mercer’s lead back in, but in the fifth inning Tanis and Joe Winker would crush the leather once again to give MU a commanding lead. Pitcher J.T. Odom would pick up the win in seven innings of

relief, the longest of his career. Jacob Tanis would lead the Bears on the day, with a 3-for-5 performance at the plate along with four RBI and two HRs. North Florida 5, Mercer 0 It took two thirds of the season for it to come, but the Bears’ offense was finally shut out by an opposing team. UNF freshman pitcher Tyler Moore threw a gem in his complete game shutout, giving up eight hits but no runs over the course of the nine innings. The Ospreys broke up the tied ballgame in the fifth inning with a pair of RBI hits and two errors to give UNF the 2-0 lead. They would add two more runs in the sixth and one in the seventh to give Justice French his first loss of the season. Mercer 6, #9 Ga. Tech 3 Lightning usually doesn’t strike the same place twice, unless you happen to be a good baseball team. Hosting the nationally ranked Yellow Jackets at home, Mercer picked up a huge win against the ACC team to give them their second win over a ranked opponent this year. A two-RBI double from John Moreland pushed Mercer’s lead to 3-0 early in the first inning while starter Matt McCall allowed only three hits in his three predetermined innings. Reliever David Teasley worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the fourth inning to preserve Mercer’s lead as a pair of doubles in the fifth inning would extend that lead to 6-2. Stellar pitching down the stretch from the arms of Russell Moses, J.T. Odom and DJ Johnson would preserve Mercer’s biggest home win of the

Women’s golf sixth at A-Sun tourney By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

The first round of the A-Sun Championship this year went according to plan as the Mercer women’s golf team blistered the field with an opening-day 300, a team record. Kimberly Graff’s 70 put her in the tournament lead, but after a difficult second and third rounds the team would stagger to a 6th-place finish. Stetson won their third title in a row as Alex Buelow mastered the field with a 71-7471. The Hatters would take the team title by 12 strokes over the Campbell Camels (906), who boasted a pair of players that tied for third, followed by Kennesaw State, ETSU and FGCU who all tied for third at 917. Falling behind with a second-round 315, the Bears would fight back to inch up the standings with a 311 on

the final day to put a sizable distance between them and the 7th-place finishers, the Jacksonville Dolphins (945). “We played with a lot of heart today,” commented head coach Gary Guyer. “We’ve come a long, long way and we’ve got a lot more pride now.” While Graff would start out hot, she would struggle with the course at Victoria Hills Golf Club in DeLand, Fla., during the next two rounds with a 79-78 to finish in a tie for 11th. Still, Graff’s threeround total would count for her second lowest tournament score in her collegiate career as she showed plenty of promise and greatness during the opening round. “Kimmy gave it everything she had this week,” Guyer said following the tournament on “I’m very proud of how she has progressed.” Teammates Lacey Fears (T15th, 74-81-76) and Mary Alice Murphy (T-25th, 75-82-

Photo Courtesy of

Freshman Mary Alice Murphy would finish with an average round score of 77.6 for the year after tying for 25th in her first title campaign at the Atlantic Sun tournament.

On The Porch By Zach Wells Sports Columnist

Scholarship Blessings I was sitting on my porch the other day, enjoying another beautiful spring morning and thinking about the copious amount of projects and finals looming in the near future. I was considering all of the stress I would be under to complete my work, and how I would combat that stress by

not studying whatsoever and turning in my projects at the last possible moment (preferably late and by e-mail). My thought is that if I don’t study, then there is less pressure to do well. Like my sagely Grandpa always said, “Low expectations equals less disappointment.” My Grandpa consistently proved this to be true by having four failed marriages and never holding a meaningful form of employment—I always wondered what the secret to his happiness was, and other than his addiction to whiskey I’m sure it had to be this wise worldview. My thoughts were interrupted by a commotion in front of my house and, thinking that there must a stray cat rummaging through my trash, I leaned over to get a better look and possibly scream an obscenity or two. I instead saw a toothless woman digging through my recycling

79) would also start out hot, struggle in the second round and then bounce back with a strong third round. Kaitlin Marrin (T-25th, 81-76-79) and Aurelie Wiriath (T-36th, 85-79-78) would round out Mercer’s scorecard in the season-ending tournament. “In my fourth year here at Mercer, this season was full of milestones, improvement and gaining experience,” Guyer explained after the tournament. “In August, I told the team that this was going to be a special year and it was. The team won the two tournaments in and during the second half of the season we continued to improve. We played very well at the Cincinnati tournament where Kaitlin Marrin blitzed the field with 11 birdies over three rounds. Obviously, our focus is winning the A-Sun Championship and I felt like we were in a great position, mentally and physically, to do so,” he added. With all letter winners returning, Guyer’s squad will have the benefit of experience next season as they will look to once again overtake the perennial favorites in conference play. After winning two tournament titles this season, the Eat-a-Peach Classic and Coastal Georgia Invitational, Guyer’s squad will look to build upon this season’s success with a young squad. With three returning players that averaged in the 70s this season, a feat not accomplished by anyone except graduate Monica Kelsey before this season, Guyer looks forwards to the 2011-12 campaign in which Mercer will once again aim to upset the A-Sun’s finest. bin, which is a virtual treasure trove of cans. This woman must weigh about 57 pounds and be in her fifties. I noticed that she was whistling a jaunty tune as she went about her work, tossing cans into her well-worn shopping cart. It warmed my heart to see someone enjoying a beautiful day and taking pleasure in her adventurous choice of vocation. She looked up and saw me watching her busy work, and I noticed a momentary look of perplexity wash over her face. “Is this okay?” she asked. “It’s fine,” I replied with a smile. “It’s a fine day,” she said with a toothless grin, and then began whistling some tune from an era that even my knowledgeable brain did not recognize. I leaned back in my chair and attempted to imagine the reality of the lady digging through my trash. Not the reality of my view of her, but her reality. What does

Alex Lockwood / Cluster Staff

Head coach Craig Gibson talks to his infielders during baseball’s recent 6-3 win over #9 Georgia Tech. After struggling in the middle of the season, the team has won four in a row heading into the final month of the season. 2011 campaign. Mercer 10, Lipscomb 2 Craig Gibson got plenty of mileage out of junior Brandon Love’s arm as he went seven innings against the Bison, limiting the side to five hits and only one earned run. The offense, in turn, came through to support Love with plenty of force, including round-trippers for John Moreland, Thomas Carroll and Billy Burns. Reliever J.T. Odom’s late-game appearance marked his 96th outing of his career, moving him into 96th all-time in ASun history. Mercer 6, Lipscomb 4 The bases were loaded in the

top of the ninth with no outs, but J.T. Odom worked flawlessly with his side-armed delivery to give the Bears their second straight conference win against the Bison. Mercer’s three-run effort in the sixth inning would put them out in front late in the game, but Lipscomb came roaring back with a two-run home run in the top of the seventh. MU’s pitching staff prevailed, though, as DJ Johnson would earn his first win of the season after pitching 2.1 innings late while teammates John Moreland (2-3, 1 RBI) and Billy Burns (2-4, 1 RBI) would help lead the batting order on the day.

Mercer 12, Lipscomb 2 Senior Justice French had another strong outing as third baseman Jacob Tanis blasted two more home runs into the stratosphere, giving MU the series sweep. Tanis’s grand slam in the seventh put the game out of reach as the junior continues to break school records and move up the ASun’s all-time list of home run hitters. Six runs in the first three innings made it a short day for LU starter Chris Nunn, but it was the dominant performance from French (6.2 IP, 8 H, 1 ER) that gave Mercer the win in their 43rd game of the season.

coachingspotlight: volleyball veteran coach Noelle Rooke By Ashley Mann Staff Writer

Head volleyball coach Noelle Rooke led her Lady Bears through a tough schedule this season. While preparing for the emerging sand volleyball team, Coach Rooke sat down with The Cluster to answer a few questions. Cluster: Although your team had a tough schedule this season, what changes do you hope to implement next season? Rooke: I scheduled a very tough non-conference schedule. We opened up the season playing the University of Washington, who is ranked number eight in the nation. We had a very tough non-conference schedule in the hopes that it would prepare us for conference, which in return it did. We had a winning record in the conference tournament and were very successful. As far as changes for next year, I just dialed it down a little bit. We are still playing some of the powerhouses, just maybe not as tough. C: How did you first get started playing volleyball? R: I was born and raised in California, so I grew up on the beach and used to play soccer and volleyball. I started playing sand volleyball before I ever stepped foot indoors. I am excited to coach both next school year, with sand volleyball being the newest NCAA emerging sport. I get to coach both and have players play indoor volleyball in the fall and sand volleyball in the spring. the world look like through her eyes, and how does she cope with it? I wondered if I could whistle my favorite song and enjoy a beautiful day if my only means of moneymaking was to walk around a neighborhood and pick through trash for aluminum cans that might fetch me five cents apiece. This caused me to contemplate everything I should be grateful for and all those who have sacrificed so that I could be where I am, especially when considering the holiday we are celebrating this weekend. For athletes, many have received scholarships to pay for school and many others have the support of loved ones who do everything in their power to help them achieve success. I was once an athlete on a full scholarship and there is no question that I took it for granted, right up to the point when it was taken away from

C: What will be your outline for the upcoming sand volleyball program? R: Ten of the girls on the team will end up being dual athletes. With sand volleyball you have to have five teams, with two players per team. I have a couple of current returns who I know will be playing on the sand (volleyball) team, as well as my incoming players. C: How does playing sand volleyball differ in strategy versus indoor volleyball? R: They are two completely different sports. You have the climate that plays a huge factor, with the sun and the wind. With only having two players it forces each girl to be better all around. In return, that will help them be better for

be good people, as well as good students and athletes. I ask every one of my players to maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher, which will look better when you graduate and go on to post-graduate schools and jobs. We are also very big on competing. I am very big on these girls competing at the highest level that they can to be the best that they can for this program. C: Who has influenced you the most in your career as a volleyball coach? R: My college coach was a big influence on me. She is the one who saw the characteristics in me to be a good coach. I also have some professional athletes within the sport of volleyball that I look up to, such as Misty May. I think that they have definitely rep-

Alex Lockwood / Cluster Staff

While her coaching career has been entirely indoors up to this point, Rooke will try her hand at sand volleyball. indoor. C: Is there a motto that you coach by? R: If you ask any player on my team they would tell you my motto is honesty is the best policy. I am very big on trying to mold my student-athletes to

resented themselves well for our sport, and they are huge role models for me. Mercer students have something to look forward to as its newest sport, sand volleyball, commences in the spring of next year.

me. It’s always a crushing blow when something you think will always be there suddenly disappears. Since the loss of my scholarship I have had the help and support of countless people, including the players and coaches associated with Mercer men’s basketball, to help me continue my education. I quickly realized that my loss meant nothing when compared to others around me. No matter how stressful my life is, I must always remember the sacrifices of those who have helped me and the hardships of those around me. As I think about Easter, the traditions of which include a day of contemplative mourning and a day of unbridled celebration, I want to appreciate what has been given to me. It’s a weekend, regardless of what I believe religiously, which forces me to consider ultimate sacrifice. There are so many

people who have sacrificed much so that I can be successful. There are countless others, in other countries and throughout history, who have done the same without even knowing who I am. I cannot begin to comprehend the ramifications of what has been done for me. Easter is also a weekend that causes me to appreciate second chances and the celebration of life. I’ve been given many second chances—in fact, I’m probably into my seventh and eighth chances in many areas. It’s amazing how easy it is for me to still become bitter and not appreciate the life that I have or the people I love. How can I complain? When I feel this way I shamefully need something to pull me back to the reality of my fortunate life, like a woman tossing cans into a shopping cart as she contentedly whistles her favorite tune.


The Cluster - April 28, 2011 - Page 13

Sports Editor

J. Andrew Lockwood

Hatters top men’s tennis in A-Sun tourney By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

Improvement came slowly to the men’s tennis team as Warren Woolfolk’s squad finished their 2011 campaign against Stetson in the Atlantic Sun Championship tournament. The 4-2 loss dropped the Bears to 9-12 (5-5 A-Sun) for the year despite a superb effort in the singles matches while Stetson improved to 19-9 overall. The Hatters got off to a quick start, easily winning the doubles point awarded to the winner of two of the three

doubles matches. Stetson’s Stene/Swanteson took an 8-2 victory over Mercer’s pairing of Tauchner/Rosindo while MU teammates Tafelski/Barton dropped a match across the court to Levanovich/Berg. The final doubles pairing was halted after Stetson claimed the doubles point. Mercer’s #4 and #6 seeds took victories in their single matchups, with Evandro Rosindo defeating SU’s Didrik Berg in comeback fashion (2-6, 6-3, 6-2). Dave Barton would account for the other match victory of the day while he cruised past Hans Adrian Riseng (6-0, 6-3). Unfortunately, Mercer’s other tennis stars would have

Photo courtesy of Mercer Athletics

Rosindro (above) ended his career with an 8-12 mark at Mercer with a win against Stetson in individual play. trouble with Pierre Tafelsky, Peter Tauchner and Guilherme Frias dropping their respective matches. Frias’s match was a close one as he came within two games of taking the opening two

sets before ultimately falling to Alex Hackett (6-4, 6-4). Ecuadorian Fernando Armendaris was split with Cesare Gallo at one set apiece when their match was halted after the ultimate outcome had been determined. Evandro Rosindro and Fernando Armendaris leave the squad as graduates, helping guide the team to steady improvement in 2011. Rosindro finished the year 8-12 in individual match play and 7-13 in doubles play while Armendaris ends his career at Mercer with an 8-9 individual mark and an incredible 13-4 notch at doubles.

Softball drums ETSU, Belmont going into final week By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

As head coach Mike Raynor’s team heads into the final week of the season, they sit in seventh in the current Atlantic Sun standings with a high probability of grabbing the sixth seed going into the season-ending championship tournament. With an above .500 record of 26-22 (8-10 A-Sun), one can only hope that the Bears catch fire as they take on Kennesaw State in the final conference doubleheader of the year. Recent struggles against USC-Upstate and Lipscomb were offset by sweeps against ETSU and Belmont. Georgia Tech and Presbyterian will serve as non-conference opponents, sandwiching the series against Kennesaw State as the 2011 season draws to a close. ETSU Doubleheader Playing the bottom-feeding

Bucs at home, Mercer jumped out to a pair of wins — 8-0 and 4-0 — to make quick work of their Johnson City victors. It was a special night indeed, as the second game of the doubleheader ended with a rare triple play to cap off the second shutout. In the first game, McKenzie Woody, Amanda Santa Maria and Kassie Bailey would all account for two RBIs each in the run-rule blowout before Jenni Holtz picked up her 11th win of the season in the nightcap. In the top of the seventh, ETSU’s first two batters reached base before the spectators witnessed the triple play from the hands of Kassie Bailey. With a line drive to her position at first base, Bailey made the catch, stepped on first and then threw to second to complete the trifecta. USC-Upstate Doubleheader After a thriller the night before, Mercer fell to the Spartans 3-1 and 5-2 in Saturday’s games. Stellar pitching from USCU’s Morgan Childers saw

her become the conference’s all-time wins leader with the victory, allowing only two hits all game. After grabbing an early 2-0 lead in the second game, Mercer was able to push across a run courtesy of Sarah Santana’s RBI single, but the effort would fall short in the end. Allison Jones would add a solo home run in the seventh, but the Spartans improved to 3611 with the win. Ga. State Doubleheader The split with the Panthers helped MU rebound from a tough go with USC-Upstate as Kari Chambers had the offense behind her in the team’s 8-2 victory in game one. Unfortunately, the same offense would not show up as Georgia State would take game two 3-2. Kassie Bailey would have another monster game to start off the afternoon, eventually batting in four runners and, in doing so, extending her hitting streak to nine games. The Bears mustered ten hits in the nightcap but were only able

to push across two runs in the seven-inning contest. Belmont Doubleheader The Bruins provided mincemeat for the Bears to get back on track as the Nashville team fell 1-0 and 5-3 to Mercer. Throwing in both games, Kari Chambers had an incredible afternoon with 10.2 innings pitched while striking out ten batters. Using small ball to win the first game as Tiffany Phillips scored the winning run on a passed ball, the offense would come alive in the second game with Sarah Santana going 2-for-2 with an RBI. Lipscomb Doubleheader There were two games, but they ended with the same outcome: 1-0. The Bison defeated Mercer in pivotal contests as the Bears lost both due to fielding errors. The only bright spot of the series was McKenzie Woody, who extended her hitting streak by knocking singles in both games against the stingy counterparts from Nashville.

clubsportspotlight: Equestrian team By J. Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor

It’s not exactly the Kentucky Derby, but for those who love horses, it’s a blast. Mercer’s Equestrian Club (MEC) and Team provides an outlet for those interested in riding, regardless of experience, as well as a competitive outlet as the Mercer Equestrian Hunt Seat Team competes in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) in Zone 5, Region 3. According to the club’s website, the IHSA competitions have eight levels of equitation competition for riders ranging from fresh beginners to seasoned national champions. MEC President Alesha Chapman heads the team, which has undergone an extensive leadership transition during the past two years. The club’s host stable, Bella Cavalla Farm near Lake Tobesofkee, also hosts the Stratford Academy Interscholastic Equestrian Hunt Seat Team. The club started in 2006 and the competitive team came along in 2007 with an average of 3-7 active riders each year. Over the past four seasons they’ve competed year round with three to four shows per

semester at different locations around the Southeast, including Charleston, SCAD, Wesleyan and Georgia Southern. “We had a slow start in the beginning, but with some hard work and shameless promotion we eventually gained a pretty substantial amount of interest in the program,” said equestrian alumni Amy Abel-Kiker. “The club began as a group of students who wanted to create not only an environment for serious riders, but also for those who were maybe just interested in horses and wanted to learn more. It was a really great mission because there are so many people who haven’t had the opportunity to ride in the past but were afforded the opportunity through the Mercer program,” she added. While the club and competitive team are separate, they enjoy a symbiotic relationship which helps promote the overall health of the program and the equestrians in general. Some riders are partial to English (all disciplines and styles) while others prefer “Western.” Journalism major and equestrian team member Kathleen Quinlan remarked that the team only competes in hunt seat, currently with one rider involved in the jumping portion, but is looking to expand

the kid’s corner

Gene Mitchell Columnist

UFC 129’s St.-Pierre vs. Shields features fight of year As our school year wraps up, the mixed martial arts world delivers what could turn into the fight of year. On April 30, the reigning Welterweight Champion, Georges St.-Pierre, will take on Jake Shields at UFC 129 in the champ’s home country, Canada. No one doubts St.-Pierre’s power and takedown abilities, but his opponent this Saturday could pose a serious threat to his rule over the Welterweight division. Shield’s wrestling and Jiu-Jitsu pedigree surpasses even the likes of B.J. Penn and Jon Fitch (both of whom have given St.-Pierre trouble in the past). St.-Pierre has developed a remarkable takedown despite never wrestling outside of mixed martial arts. His striking skills have not been seen lately, and if he is unable to revive his former self he may well see Shields walking around with his belt. Even though St.-Pierre may possess a great takedown, he does not possess a great takedown defense. He will need all three this weekend to defeat Shields. The co-main event also has title implications as the Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo takes on Canadian Mark Hominick. Hominick is coming off a victory over tough opponent George Roop and looks to do something no one has done in six years; defeat Jose Aldo. Aldo dominated the weight

class in World Extreme Cagefighting by defeating the likes of Urijiah Faber, Mike Brown and Manny Gamburyan. If the past shows any insight into the future, this fight will show the same result as Aldo still appears unstoppable. Hominick’s only hope is that Aldo’s seven-month layoff will slow down the champion. The most interesting fight of the night belongs to Randy Couture and Lyoto Machida. Couture, who still defies time and gravity, looks to fight one of the premiere fighters of the light-heavyweight division. Couture, who turns 48 this year, will be competing against a much younger and quicker Machida. Couture will need to utilize his GrecoRoman expertise to slow down the pace and lengthen the match in time and shorten the distance of the cage. If not, fans could see Couture retire after Saturday. The interesting part of the fight, though, comes not from the match but from the reason this fight needs to happen. Machida gains from this only if he wins marginally. Couture gains no historic placement from this fight as his status as legend seems secure enough. Why would the UFC put this fight together? Machida certainly would not deserve a title shot after this fight and Couture realistically cannot think he can make another run for the title. St.-Pierre and Aldo are both big enough names to pull in a large viewing for the event and the promotion did not need heavy names like these to help with revenue. This matchup seems more of an itch that someone needed to scratch than anything else. The greatest part of UFC 129 is that six of the eleven fights on the card will air free of charge. Four will air on Facebook and the other two will air on SpikeTV. The UFC apparently received more revenue from fans wanting to see more from the social media free views and it looks to add to that promotion. UFC 129 Predictions G. St-Pierre v. J. Shields R3 Submission J. Aldo v. M. Hominick R2 TKO V. Matyushenko v. J. Brilz R3 Majority Decision R. Couture v. L. Machida R3 Unanimous Decision M. Bocek v. B. Henderson R3 Unanimous Decison

Photo courtesy of Mercer Equestrian

Veteran equestrian team member Kathleen Quinlan rides in the novice flat category at a competition last semester at the Savannah College of Art and Design show. into the Western style of riding next season. “I would like to think that through the Mercer Equestrian Program, a handful of Mercer students were able to find their place at Mercer doing what

they love,” Abel-Kiker said. For more information on the club and competitive team, visit for contact information and an event schedule.

Photo courtesy of

George St.-Pierre (left) and Jake Shields (right) could provide fireworks in UFC 129 in a match that Gene predicts has the potential to be fight of the year.

playerspotlight: women’s golfer and Canadian Kaitlin Marrin By Ashley Mann Staff Writer

A native of Ontario, Canada, sophomore Kaitlin Marrin journeyed to the United States to play golf at the collegiate level. Cluster: How old were you when you first began playing golf? Marrin: I started late. I began playing when I was 15. I played other sports beforehand, so learning how to pick up the game was pretty easy. C: How does the culture around golf differ in Canada versus the United States? M: Canadians love golf. As soon as the weather gets warm that is all they want to do. We want to just go and hang out in the sun for as long as we

can, because we will probably only have about six months of nice weather before you really can’t play golf. That is really the only difference. We are just excited about it. C: When you took a year off from school, in what areas did you improve your game?

Photo courtesy:

Marin finished in a tie for 25th in this year’s A-Sun tournament in Florida.

M: Definitely mentally. It was really tough living in Florida on my own without my parents. It was a big difference coming down to a different nation. I learned a lot, like how to make different shots happen and play a lot smarter golf. I just grew more mature as a player and an individual. C: Where do you see golf taking you in the future? Do you hope to either coach or play professionally? M: It would be cool to play professionally, because if you can have a job and get paid for doing something you love that would be great. I don’t know if I could coach it. We have some girls on our team who could coach, and they do help the other players on the team. However, maybe something in the golf industry such as marketing or working for the golf channel would be really cool. C: Your team has played fair-

ly well this season. To what do you attribute that success? M: We have some really good incoming players, and we always get along really well. We are a really close-knit team and hang out outside of the golf course. That really helps, and it brings a joy to competitive golfing. C: What is one thing your coach has tried to stress to the team this season? M: He was really all about focus and trusting yourself. My putting average went down and he has done a great job this semester. It is the best season I have had so far, and his methods have really worked. We really worked hard and stayed focused. C: Is there a pre-game ritual that you do to get prepared and focused? M: I like to be quiet in the morning before we play. I probably won’t talk to anyone

very much. I will head over to the tee 15 minutes early even most girls will head over six to eight minutes early. C: Who is your favorite professional player?

M: My favorite is always going to be Tiger Woods. I don’t care what anyone says. I love him and I want him to be good.

Photo courtesy of

Kaitlin Marrin, far left, helped out with the Just Us Girls golf camp in which the team helps promote the sport with younger golfers in the Macon community during her sophomore year campaign at Mercer.

The Cluster - April 28, 2011- Page 14

Photography Editor Noah Maier

The End…

whatyousay? clusterseniors Kayleigh Irby

If you had one million dollars, what would you build on campus?

Business Manager Journalism Major

Andrew Lockwood Sports Editor Industrial Engineering Major ““A Ab bigger laundry room, because tthere her are never any open w as washers and dryers in MEP.”

Kathleen Quinlan

--Alexis Al Butler, Freshman F re

News Editor English and Journalism Major

Morgan Riley Co-Editor in Chief Journalism Major “Probably a botannical garden because it would be beautiful, and a place where people could just relax.”

Difficulty: 40

- Wolé Ogundele, Freshman




7 4

5 4


9 4

9 ““Valet Va parking!”

- Kelley K Peel, Sophomore S o










4 3


4 5 1


1 4



Difficulty: 84 9

4 1

“I would build a giant water slide for the pool. I think that’s a great use of money.”

- Elizabeth Goodman, Sophomore


5 7

7 1


9 9 3

3 4

9 3

6 9

4 8



2 8

5 7


4 7


Mercer Cluster Issue 15 2011  

Mercer's official student newspaper.

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