FAUCET Vol. 46 no.3 • Thursday, Dec. 16th, 2010
Plumber’s Masthead Editor-in-Chief Neil DenToom Coordinator Etienne Billette Writers David Bailey Neil DenToom Nick Hemsworth Phil Siroky Rebecca Weber Covers Eric Waldman Photographer Ali Najmabadi
Letter from the Editor Dear Readers, First of all, I would like to say just how thrilled I am to be in engineering here at McGill and how much of an honour it is to be working alongside some of the greatest people around. It’s a pleasure to have my name at the top of this list here as one of a few who have the privilege to periodically deliver to you the info, evident motivation and anecdotes that will make you snicker and sometimes even change your life. Much appreciation goes out to the ones on the list, and also to the gang that circulates in and out of Infosys sharing their wisdom and exchanging new and absurd ideas. It’s these people who really keep the legacy like the Plumber’s Faucet going for years. So, just like we braved the seemingly eternal semester full of assignments and midterms, we continue to brave the final exam period until the winter break reels each of us in for two weeks of freedom and bliss. With another term put behind us, we’ll of course get the opportunity to learn more, to get our “A” in our Procrastination and the Lifestyle Thereof course when we get around to taking it and, more importantly, to keep showing the world that engineers know the most about having a good time!
Disclaimer The Plumber’s Faucet is a publication of the EUS. The views and opinions expressed within are soley that of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the EUS or the McGill Faculty of Engineering. For more information, questions, and comments please contact email@example.com the plumber’s FAUCET vol. 46 no. 3 Thursday, December 16th, 2010
I don’t think I’ve ever seen people work so hard, accomplish so much and be so dedicated, yet still muster up reasonable human decency. Pretty impressive work and something to be proud of, but what does a first year like me know, you might ask. I think I get the vibe of the coming uphill battles when I get laughed at for saying I’m studying in first year.
Enjoy this issue and your well-deserved holiday,
Neil DenToom, Editor-in-Chief
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Bring It On, Winter Wonderland
by Becca Weber
I’ve been in a funk, and not in the cool 1970s-1990s music genre way. Midterm exams have passed, but the instant they were behind me, papers and assignments increased to the point of overload, and I complete them proficiently and on-time, regardless of my utter lack of motivation. Now, with finals and all, the round red and grey chairs in the Redpath library form my “study boat”, where I furiously type away, comfortable in my sweatpants and warm socks, surreptitiously hiding bites of food from the over-vigilant security guards unnecessarily patrolling the book-free area. Who knows? Maybe I’m there right now, writing this article instead--anything to break the school-related monotony. As I see everyone else periodically checking Facebook and playing online games, I quickly realize I am not alone in my ennui. American Thanksgiving too came and went, a time which, for students in universities south of the border, signifies a near-end of lectures and the beginning of the exam period. Up here we have a similar shift, but without such obvious demarcation. Though, they have more breaks than we do anyway. No complaints; it just is what it is. I have a habit of not getting homesick, but going home for Thanksgiving would be fantastic. It would have also been a nice change into exams from constant lectures and work, not to mention having a home-cooked meal and seeing my family for the first time in months (oh Skype…
how you’ve failed us). All I can say is: hang in there; stay in the game. The semester will be over before we know it, and Christmas break (more on political correctness elsewhere in the previous Faucet) will soon be upon us, giving us two to three full weeks to again get sick of being cooped up at home with the families we so love and miss when they’re miles and miles away. Just think of all the friends you’ll see at home, and of the few blissful work-free and worry-free weeks. Maybe we’ll even get an even more substantial amount of snow for Christmas! Then on top of relaxing and having fun whilst
just not having work, there is the possibility of sledding and building snowmen, and ice skating on frozen ponds, and hot chocolate with whipped cream and marshmallows, and skiing, and snowboarding, and snowtubing, and scarves, and mittens, and “Jack Frost nipping at your nose!” (If you haven’t noticed, I love winter to a somewhat ridiculous extent. What’s with all this rain, anyway? Maybe that’s adding to the funk.) And regardless of the weather, soon houses and buildings will be adorned with brilliant lights and yard arrangements. December is so pretty. Hang in there. You can make it!
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Rockstar E-Week! by Nick Hemsworth
Over the course of my years at McGill, I’ve noticed some shortcomings in the academic curriculum and a contagious lack of enthusiasm within the staff. For instance: not once have I had a professor challenge me to a boat race. Not once has a TA assessed my ability to remain firmly-planted on the seat of a mechanical riding bull. And, finally, not once have I ever heard a professor even mention doing anything rockstar-themed. How do we cope with these shortcomings of the academic curriculum? We throw a ridiculous fourday-long party in the second week of January. This shit-show is what we, the engineers, proudly refer to as E-Week. This year’s E-Week is Rockstar E-Week. Rockstar E-Week is a comprehensive training “seminar” where engineers acquire the rock skills of the gods. Rockstar E-Week caters to various skill levels – both complete beginners (non-drinkers) and Steve Vais (Blues Pub regulars) will quickly make themselves at home. Ever wanted to learn how to play a guitar that’s been drenched in napalm with your toes? If you survive the Pub Crawl, I’ll be more than
happy to show you the subtleties of this delicate craft. Now I know the question that you’re all probably asking by now: what if I can’t rock as hard as Nick Hemsworth? That’s quite alright-no need to worry! Your departmental captain will make sure your rock skills develop quickly and attain superstar status. Departmental captains are a new addition this year--we’ve added captains for each department to make sure that everyone is coordinated and onkey. The adept leadership skills of your captain will make sure that, by the end of E-Week, you’ll know how to shred, eight-finger tap, and sweep pick. We have an awesome lineup this year: Pubcrawl, Century Club, Pubnite, Bus Trip to Nowhere, Risk tournament, 3-man, design competition, and a Blues Pub ev-
ery night of E-Week. We’ll also be holding closing ceremonies on Saturday night right before the Bus Trip to Nowhere where we’ll test the weapons of mass consumption and just get generally rowdy. The pub crawl we have lined up for you guys is going to be a monstrous ten-stop affair that’ll test the very limits of both your strength and your aggression. Also, the location we’ve selected for Bus Trip to Nowhere may or may not have a mechanical bull. To simplify matters, we’re throwing everything together into one extreme package--45$ gives you access to all events, a t-shirt, and a very generous quantity of alcohol. Registration is as simple as making your way to our table in the EUS area or surfing on over to eweek.mcgilleus.ca!
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Roadie Tasks Roadies are keen U0-U1 students who want to prove their aggression, their strength and their Rock Star quality. They compete in four ridiculous challenges to get points for their department. So come and cheer on your departmental roadie!
Bus trip Step 1: Get on a bus Step 2: Arrive to a bar of undisclosed location Step 3: ????? Step 4: Come back. Whatever happens on bus trip, stays on bus trip--if you can remember it anyways.
Feeling bored between or during classes? There are things you can do about that! Come to the common room for an EUS-style risk tournament and attempt to prove how awesome your department is.
The Century Club is a long-lived engineering tradition in which you take a shot of beer every minute for a hundred minutes, all of which is included, guaranteeing a wild night.
Every day of the week from 4 to 7, engineers get to quench their thirst and enjoy a small victory against the establishment by having fun on a school night. A different department will be hosting each day, so come and support yours (along with every other) by showing up!
PubNite Do you remember Toga Party, or 4 Floors? I hope not, the same people that organized them are bringing you another PubNite for your enjoyment.
Take 10 amazing stops around Montreal enjoying all beer and food included in the $45 E-Week ticket. Sign up in teams of four and get ready for a crazy night with cash rewards and prizes for teams that dress in slutty attire or in costume and do crazy things all night--as long as there’s proof!
Mini Blues Pubs
Design Competition What better way to prove your engineering savvy than to compete in our E-Week design competition. Everyone can come help out. This is the time to figure out which department has the best engineers.
3 Man Description: Beer, more beer and a gigantic die, don’t worry: it’s all free.
Join us for a pre-drink for Bus Trip to Nowhere as we announce the winners of the E-Week awards. We will be judging the weapons of mass consumption as well. Also, don’t forget the drunken debates; where you must attempt to convince your opponent of your assertion using parliamentary style debate except between rounds you must chug a beer.
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The Computer Age and the Return of Magic By David Bailey
You know, back in the days of yore, people really knew how to get results. Let’s say you do something unusual at some point, like adding the bladder taken from a lame sheep to your gruel one day. Shortly after eating said gruel, you meet a pretty wench and get lucky. Then it is obvious that eating the bladder of a lame sheep increases virility. Maybe you’re trying to think of words that start with “dw-”, and just as you mutter the sound “dwoink”, a man down the road falls off his horse. Clearly, you’ve stumbled upon a hex. Maybe when the circus came to town, little Hugo was allowed to have a ride atop a tamed bear. The next week, all the children in the village catch the whooping cough – except for Hugo. Well, then riding on the back of a bear prevents whooping cough (I didn’t make up this last one). Basically, the general rule was that a random action could produce a random effect. Some people - shamans, witch doctors, etc. - made their livings by remembering which random actions produced which random effects. Now why did this all work? Well, the answer was simple – magic. As time went on, people started to realize that these tricks were somewhat inconsistent in their success rates. As the march of science progressed, we found ways of accomplishing things which were more reliable and could be logically explained. As a result, magic died. What people didn’t anticipate was that magic would come back in unexpected new ways. I real-
ized that magic had returned while I was playing Fallout New Vegas, Bethesda’s exciting new RPG shooter which has more bugs in it than your grandfather’s mattress. I found that every time I entered one important area of the game my system would crash. Now this was
pretty annoying, so I looked online for a solution. It turns out that the problem can be avoided by having your character wear a particular hat when entering the area. I tried, and sure enough, it worked. But it struck me – of all the hundreds of items in this game, why should using one
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generic item prevent a system crash while performing a simple action? The answer isn’t that complicated – it’s magic. Now, I’m not some artsy fool who doesn’t understand why you have to stick the metal things on that cord into those holes in the wall to make the glow-box work. I know that there is obviously some technical explanation to the glitch. However, software has become complex enough that in many cases such explanations will go over the head of even a technically adept user. No longer can I even sort of see why something happens – all I see is an effect brought about by a random cause. Kind of reminds you of the good old days, doesn’t it? To all you future computer and software engineers who are reading this, I salute you, for you are the witch doctors of the modern age. Your extensive training will allow you develop rituals to solve the
world’s technical woes. However, unlike your medieval predecessors, the eye of newt and liver of toad you give me actually will make me stronger and cure my inability to play the accordion. Perhaps a good example of the power of the modern witch doctor is the exorcism I had to perform on my computer. I wanted to delete some Apple files which had made their way onto my hard drive and were slowing things down by running unnecessary background processes. It proved impossible to delete the files, as they were allegedly actively being used to run processes. Whenever I ended the processes on the control panel, they would start up again, presumably as the files were still in existence. Truly, my computer was possessed. The electronic spirit of Steve Jobs was sapping its strength, perhaps so that the performance decrease would tempt me to buy his products. I was
strong though. I searched through many webpages, traveling from the shop of one witch doctor to another, until I found one who knew how to perform an exorcism. I found detailed instructions, which involved renaming files in particular ways, making registry changes (or some other profound alteration), and restarting my system. I took a blind leap of faith and followed the instructions to the letter, and – lo and behold – my computer was finally purged of the evil demon. I did these tasks blindly, but the desired result was achieved – it was magic. So if you’re ever watching Harry Potter and you’re wishing that the world had just a little more magic, remember that it does. As we move into the future, and software progresses even further beyond the average person’s comprehension, this mysterious part of our world will just become more exciting. Click “start”, type “run”, cast your spells, and watch as your problems vanish!
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Promiscuity is a Responsibility
by Neil DenToom
What happens between Josh, Xavier and whipping cream in the Red Light District stays in the Red Light District.
Ali, working his magic to bring out the slutty side of the ladies of Slutty Blues Pub.
Our very own David Bailey creaming and whipping up a Con“cock”tion.
As you might recall, on the last Friday of October, Blues Pub was host to a spirited Halloween party with a dress code of: costumed. The standard interpretation of that is to take some vague idea of a person, animal, concept or thing, represent it with as little clothing as possible, give it a title and add “slutty” to the beginning of it. The Plumber’s Faucet’s Slutty Blues Pub just saved you the effort of disguising your sluttiness with a costume. The evening started off with a bang, and the banging continued throughout Blues Pub and late into the night. As soon as you stepped foot into the madness, you got a complimentary lollipop as a “warm up” for the evening. Now, put your slutty side to the test; think of anything slutty or anything that encourages sluttiness. Whatever your dirty mind
came up with, it was there. Body shots. Drinking a “pornstar” is wonderful in itself, but why not take it up a level and drink your “pornstar” off the sexy body of your newly-made personal pornstar friend? Beer. It has been scientifically proven to be a finely tuned instrument of promiscuity. (Reference: Binary Hotness Scale 2010) Mardi Gras beads. These definitely did some well earned changes of hands. We would have made New Orleans proud. Red Light District. What happens in the red light district stays in the red light district, but we’ll say, the Blues Pubbers looking to privately explore some “private areas,” privately found the notso-private, private “closet” of this Red Light District. Seven Minutes In Heaven closet. Of course there was one
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Yeah, the sluttiness of those too; there were many people’s closet desires to accommodate. Also, not unlike all those books from Schulich Library that you just have to read longer, or for the third time, this closet could be renewed for as many seven minutes as you desired. Double Strip Twister. A first ever at Blues Pub, and what could be better than turning a children’s “stocking feet game” with prettycoloured circles to amusingly test your flexibility into a three-dimensional, drunk, nudity-encouraging hands-on party game? This was probably a first ever in your life too, unless of course you are downright brilliant and your libido
blew our minds too. would put any rodent to shame. Bananas, cherries, whipped cream. None of these are promiscuous or sexy enough for Slutty Blues Pub, so we combined them all into one amazing Con“cock”tion. You could also buy a Pogo under the alibi of “penis,” and thus it was more than encouraged to have a penis in your mouth at all times. Most people were rather willing to meet and exceed the make-out quota spontaneously throughout Blues Pub or during special visits to various districts and closets. Another group of more than twenty volunteered their mouths to do some probing to help polish off a candy thong. Nothing says amazing like sexy sugary lingerie. The also complimentary condoms were obviously a hot com-
Jason + Dan x 2 =
Ali + Girl x 2 =
modity all to be used to make a great night greater. With a strapon protected by a Trojan, one table dancing bartender led by example to ensure that the sluttiness was not interrupted by unplanned pregnancy. However, how much of an honour would it be for a child to grow up and be able to say he or she was conceived at Slutty Blues Pub? If you had the pleasure of being there, good for you; surely your slutty side is now well acquainted with your other slutty side and both should now be fully experienced. If for some reason you didn’t, like you listen to the angel and devil on your shoulders, start listening to the petite one licking the Con“cock”tion and wearing nothing but stilettos and a candy thong; he knows best.
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Just a Monday Night After Schulich by Phil Siroky
Monday night in Schulich, I was toiling away, studying for exams. It had been a week since my last exam, my next one was Friday. I was going stir crazy spending all my time in libraries and computer labs, but there I was. The girl on my left was a really pissing me off ruffling through her bag, eating baby carrots and - most distracting of all - her legs were vibrating the table like she left her dildo on. After two hours of crunching and buzzing I was stricken, but not by the urge to punch Lefty* in the back of the head, that had come and gone 90 minutes ago. This feeling was not even arousal attributed to either the gentleman in the mesh shirt who had been giving “The Look,” or the girl two tables over who flashed the room while taking off her sweater. The urge was far more powerful - insatiable on the 6th floor of Schulich library. I had to take a shit. Not your everyday #2, but a real sit-down. I
needed a newspaper. I packed up my things and left the library. I knew my backpack couldn’t come with me where I was going. I headed to Infosys, where I knew my bag could be left safely with friends. I picked up a copy of The Red Herring (after the search for a Faucet was cut short due to bowel urgency) and headed to my favourite bathroom. Now at this point, I’m sure you’re wondering what makes a bathroom at school stand out from the others. Aren’t all school bathrooms public dirty gross cesspools? The answer is no. At a major university like this one, there are many buildings whose upper floors have bathrooms, far, far away from lecture halls, miles from the cafeteria and light years away from busy computer labs - in short, nowhere near you’re dirty undergraduate ass. My facility of choice, is on the sixth floor of McConnell Engineer-
The equivalent picture book version:
ing. It’s the perfect place to “unload” in peace at 7 o’clock on a Monday night. There are only offices up there, the shitter is right next to the elevator and the view is great from the stall next to the window. With my newspaper in hand, I boarded the elevator. I was excited. I put this off for almost 10 minutes, but it would be perfect. A grad student got off at the second floor; I like to think he was going to the bathroom too, he didn’t know what he was missing. The elevator finally arrived at 6. As the door opened a strange thing happened. I was over taken by music. Not angels singing arias, nor Flight of Valkyries prepping me for the shit storm I was going to release on that porcelain bowl pun intended. No, this music was different, there was more rhythm, and it made my hips twitch ever so slightly, people were clapping. This music had nothing to do with
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destructive force my bowels had brewed up, it was salsa. The doors came reached the full open position, and I found myself in a very awkward one. I had walked into a dance class. There I was standing in the elevator, with a blank look on my face and a newspaper in my hand. All that stood between me my crapper of choice was 12 people doing the Cha-Cha. I know what you’re thinking, “heads are about to roll.” I drew my Katana from its sheath held it high and the air and let out in manly grunt “FOR THE THRONE!!!!!” then things got messy. That goes to say, I stepped out of the elevator quietly and respectfully walked around the group, and shyly slipped into the bathroom. I’ll spare you the details. Approximately 15 minutes and 1 1/2 rolls of toilet paper later, I took to the stairwell. I was excit-
ed. This shit was surreal, not the poo, the salsa. I didn’t give it much description; I was kind of rushing to the toilet to take a shit. There were just a dozen people, dancing in perfect unison to Latin rhythms, clapping as if they were one. One man to one woman, it was like nothing you’ve ever seen nestled in between elevators next to a toilet. I burst back into Infosys. Phil: “Gentlemen, there are times in life, where you need to trust me and do exactly I say, when I say it. Drop what you’re doing, and take the elevator to the sixth floor. You need to see this.” Eric: “Can I take my pizza?” Phil: “Fine.” The four of us were in the elevator, Neil and Dan wanted to know what was happening. Phil: “Just know that when I saw what I saw, I was just expecting to take a quiet shit.”
The elevator arrived at the sixth floor. The door cracked open and there was no sound, no music, just silence. In the full open position, we had a view of a young lady, packing up her iPod dock. No hip twitching, no clapping, just some bitty rushing off to catch her bus. Yet again I found myself in an awkward position. There may as well have been nothing there. We walked straight to the stairwell. The girl gave me a dirty look, that butthead must have recognized my pink toque with the orange pom-pom. It was embarrassing. I suppose that magical moment of enchachantment, like the wardrobe that leads to a land of fantasy and adventure, was meant just for me. Maybe one day those poor souls will learn to believe and on that day, just like I am now, they’ll write a Faucet article about taking a shit.