Issue 2 Autumn 2008
New Dean at BAM means business by Dave Bolton
Me: A Beauty Queen?!
Regent’s College Student Crowned Miss Venezuela by Pamela Jusino
A Regent’s College student who said she ‘never in her life imagined’ becoming a beauty queen, has
been crowned Miss World Venezuela 2008. María Milagros Véliz, an EBS student, beginning her final year of a three-and-a-half year BAIB degree, was chosen from 3000 competitors
to represent her country at the Miss World pageant, which will be held in November 2009 in South Africa. Speaking to The Regent from her home city of Guacara, Maria
Sun streams through the window as the dulcet (and slightly unexpected) tones of Bob Dylan drift through the room. A bookshelf straining with academic tomes and Stock Exchange Yearbooks sits snugly beside a conference table covered with papers and work in progress. Martin Timbrell, the new Dean of the Faculty of Business and Management at Regent’s College is obviously a busy man. He leans back in his chair, looking out the window while smoothing down his tie and quietly comments, “Getting a job next year might be tough.” Surely only one year into the job, he isn’t thinking about moving on? He is, of course, referring not to his own situation but to the students who will be soon taking their first tentative steps into a world that is experiencing a slight crisis of confidence in its financial stability. What Timbrell is confident about, however, is that the students at Regent’s will be fully prepared and equipped for the challenges ahead. After a year in the job as Dean, Timbrell says, “I was expecting to enjoy it, but a year on I still have no regrets.” The challenge of working with a “truly international population, located in the centre of London” was worth leaving the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield where he was Dean of the Business School and Director of International Development, to return to London where he was born. Timbrell feels that his experience in being a manager of people at the university, rather than just an educator was perfect preparation for the newly created role at Regent’s and when the chance came, “I couldn’t resist it, the job was written for me.” Timbrell is quick to point out that both he and his opposite number at Regent’s, Judith Ackroyd, the Dean of Humanities, Arts and Sciences, see Regent’s as a single college, albeit with different departments. Having experienced jobs where everyone has “been fighting for the same piece of pie”, he is happy to be part of the team and is “delighted to say that the two Deans get on well.” This might have something to do with the fact that her brother played in goal for his five-a-side football team while he was working in Exeter. A keen sportsman, although confined to mainly being a follower of sport (he broke his leg in 1995, and “never recovered”), Timbrell stresses the importance of team building and working
In memoriam: Freddie Strasser
Jonathan Miller: “Don’t call me a polymath”
Ponyboy & the Switchblades rock Tuke
Welcome to the second edition of The Regent newspaper, a true college paper staffed and created by the students and staff at Regent’s College. As befits this being our second edition, there are more stories and pages to read this time around, contributed by more than a dozen people who study and work in our schools. Our lead story is about EBS student Maria Milagros Veliz, who won the title of Miss Venezuela this year and is currently preparing for the Miss World pageant in 2009. Despite the glamour of the event and demands it puts on her, Maria’s priority is to come back and finish her degree at EBS next term. The other highlights in the paper reflect the many activities taking place around campus this term, including the new building and refit on campus, the American election, an
interview with Martin Timbrell, the new Dean of the Facultry for Business and Management. And don’t miss the competition inside that will test your powers of logical thinking, with a prize for the first correct answer. From next term The Regent will be produced by a class of budding journalists studying newspaper production. They will lead the reporting, writing, photography, editing , layout and ad sales for the paper. But they will still depend on contributions from interested students and staff around the college. So if you’ve got a tip or a story that you’d like covered, or you want to submit a story or photograph, please do get in touch. The contact details for now are vineyl or greyp, both at regents.ac.uk. Leslie Viney and Phil Grey
Photo Hugo Salvaterra
Dean at BAM means business >> 1 New together to achieve exist, of course.”
the same goals. He sees Regent’s as a “truly international school” that is able to use its network of Webster campuses to further develop the skills and knowledge of its students to fully realise their potential. “Webster are good partners for us, they are incredibly outward looking and (I would like) our students to take advantage of their facilities,” says Dean Timbrell, adding that here in London, the college is able to offer certain opportunities that are not available in the United States. “When you come to London, you are part of an international financial capital and we can offer visits to major banks and financial institutions.” He smiles and drily adds, “That is if they still 2
However, education is a serious business and he quickly returns to his themes of teamwork and preparation. He strongly believes that “Regent’s gives the best practical training” and that “we will be producing graduates that will be in demand by companies.” Searching for the right words and with the music still playing in the background, his eyes light up and he focuses on the glossy Regent’s Business School brochures on the table in front of him. He deliberately taps out the message on their cover, “Regent’s College. Developing Tomorrow’s Global Leaders.” Provided there are still institutions for Regent’s students to lead, Timbrell believes our students will be ready and raring to go.
In Memorium: Dr. Freddie Strasser
Freddie Strasser, SPCP course director died on September 23rd at the age of 84. The loss to SPCP, both professionally and personally has been considerable, as was reflected in the great number of friends and colleagues who joined with his family at his cremation a few days later. Freddie had been associated with Regent’s College since 1991, at various times working as a course leader, lecturer and supervisor on a range of training courses, from foundation level to post-MA. For the last 10 years he was the Course Director of SPCP’s Mediation programme, which he launched with the support of colleagues, particularly Paul Randolph and which achieved very considerable success, helping to raise the profile of both SPCP and Regent’s College within the legal world. During the course of his tenure with the School, Freddie’s easy charm and good nature touched the lives of hundreds of students, and those who did not have the pleasure of working with him can still engage with his insight and guidance in his published work on existential psychotherapy, on which he was a considerable authority, Two weeks after his passing, the Society for Existential Analysis held its 20th Anniversary conference. Freddie had been a founder member of the Society, and had worked on its committee for many years. At the conference a display of photographs afforded glimpses of Freddie’s long and eventful life, and a book of condolences was displayed. A memorial service for Dr. Strasser will be held at Regent’s College at 4.00pm on December 11th. Here are some excerpts of messages of condolence from various colleagues, students and friends.
“Colleagues, It is with great sadness that I have to inform you that Dr Freddie Strasser passed away on the afternoon of Tuesday 14th October, at 5 pm. Freddie has been a stalwart supporter of SPCP and also developments in the College as a whole. A memorial meeting for Freddie will be held in about a month and all staff and past and present students and colleagues will be invited.” Aldwyn Cooper CEO Regent’s College
“My Dearest Freddie, Even though you are gone, and despite your decision to fly away from this world, your spirit lives on. Your soul, that open and wide soul touched me from the first moment I met you.You were a man of brilliance. A brilliant intellect, a brilliant charm, a brilliant, open smile, a man of wisdom, a man of talent, a man of resourcefulness and vision. The ten years I had known you were blessed with your energy. You were a symbol of life for all of us. Your determination, wit, charm and intelligence were contagious. Your uncompromising stubbornness to see things done your way ensured the success of the programmes under your responsibility. Your workaholism was
Death is a Bend in the Road by Fernando Pessoa
Death is a bend in the road, Dying is just being missed. I listen and hear you gone Existing as I exist.
at times contagious and at times infuriating, but you took it all in your stride and with a laugh. I will always remember you as the gentleman who brought light into the room, any room, but for me the office that we had shared. Our conversations about the paradoxes of life somehow always returned to the issue of life, and the limitations imposed upon us by the ageing process. You refused to accept that age means resignation. You fought like a lion to protect what you believed in and to continue to live the life you had chosen. I have great admiration for you, always did and always will. You touched my heart with your compassion and life energy. I feel lucky to have known you and so very sad to have lost you.Thank you for what you have given me as a colleague and as a friend. I will always remember you Freddie and thank you for being you.” Maria Luca “When a good teacher and mentor dies, a little bit of you dies with them, just as much as a bit of them lives on in you, through your work which was guided by them. My condolences to those who knew him much better than I did.” Mel Parr “Freddie was my supervisor during
The earth is made of heaven. Deception has no heir. No one has ever been lost. All’s true and a way somewhere.
my first term of working with clients on the MA and it was thanks to his wisdom, humour and kindness that I realised how fascinating and rewarding it could be to be an existential therapist. I will always be grateful to him for helping start me on my path. He was a remarkable, special man.” Flora Cruft Psychotherapist, Exeter
“He was a very special person and I feel deeply bereft myself. His soul will rest in peace for sure: he has worked hard enough for it and he earned it every step of the way.” Emmy van Deurzen
“He was such a special person who had a profound effect upon the lives of all who knew him. His enthusiasm, energy, dedication and drive inspired many, but it was his warmth, charm, and wisdom that touched our hearts Because Freddie will have so deeply influenced the lives of so many, I would like to compile a ‘book of memories and condolences’, to be given to his family, and a copy kept also at Regent’s College. Paul Randolph
If you have any memories, anecdotes, and thoughts of Freddie you would like to have included in the book, please forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Green matters by Alan Sitkin
New and returning students concerned by ecological sustainability will be pleased to learn about the opportunities offered on-campus to get involved in environmental matters. In Spring Semester 2009, and for the first time ever, EBS is going to run a Level 2 Elective entitled ‘Environmental Sustainability For Managers’ that might also be open to other Schools. This module will be split into a broad framework study of the macro-environmental problems we all face, and a more micro-level analysis of how companies might respond. I will be teaching the first section; Liz Allen the second; and an outside speaker will be brought in to talk about corporate realities in this domain. We hope that many students will de-
cide to sign up for this exciting new course. Last term saw the launch of an ongoing Student-Staff Environmental Committee (SSEC) that will serve as a platform for debating, developing and implementing environmental actions here at Regents. The initial focus on recycling paper and refectory food has had some very successful outcomes. We are also looking at ways of minimising energy use, by encouraging staff and students to switch off lights and computers when leaving rooms. Much remains to be done in this area and there are further battles to wage, like organising carpools and re-cycling bottles. You are all encouraged to get involved by attending committee meetings, or e-mailing your ideas for “Greening” Regent’s College to members like myself, or Student Union president Robert F. Peveling-Oberhag. It is your chance to take a positive step to help shape the future,
The Renaissance man cometh
Grand Designs for Regent’s
Photo: Julian Standish
Students returned to Regent’s to find the college approach under construction. A few weeks later it had been transformed into an attractive cobblestone driveway, with a separate pavement, conforming to Health and Safety regulations.
Glittering Events Premiere Heralds New Era by Jeff Papis
Photo: Alan McNamara
by Jeff Papis
To anyone unfamiliar with the life and work of Jonathan Miller, his talk at the first Regent’s College sponsored ‘Speakers in the Park’ event this semester provided the opportunity to hear the recollections of a truly entertaining and interesting man. Combining a career as both doctor and director in theatre and opera, Miller comes across as either a genuine “Homo Universalis”, or an absolutely superb actor,charming his audience with a wonderful collection of amusing anecdotes from a variety of fields. I very much suspect he is a bit of both. Reflecting on what it means to be a “Renaissance man”, Miller’s eloquent discursions ranged from the way monkeys learn to adjust their eating habits to their local environment, to the subject of God and ghostly entities. “I’ve never had a religious thought in my life and I came from a Jewish family, whatever that means,” says Miller. “I still don’t know what that means.” Whether consummate actor or not, Miller’s natural performance and simple yet flamboyant style was enjoyable to watch. When talking
about his role as theatre director, he said that he does the job effortlessly. It’s his role as a doctor however that has made him good at directing, he says. ”As a surgeon, I observe people and what they do, their hand gestures and mannerisms.” His career in the theatre was an accident, he says, following the success of the Cambridge Footlights’ production of “Beyond the Fringe”. But Miller revealed that he regretted having accepted so many and varied roles in the performing arts, saying he should have pursued his true calling and continued his career as a doctor. While Miller is no doubt a clever and entertaining man, one of his greatest achievements is having led a full and varied life while retaining a marvelously positive and optimistic view of the world and its events. The atmosphere at the event was pleasantly cosy, with a mixed audience of young and old, students and academic staff. Jonathan Miller deserved a larger audience, or rather larger audiences should be privileged to hear what someone with his wealth of experience has to say, not just about the theatre or medicine but about the world
The latest addition to Regent’s College portfolio is the BA in International Events Management. In its first semester, the course has successfully recruited students from as far as Israel, Ghana and the United States, despite the short lead time given to marketing and recruitment departments to promote it. The indications are that it is continuing to generate interest among prospective students applying to the College. A small cohort of fifteen highly motivated students, already in action on two college
events, was praised for the excellent service they provided delegates on both occasions. “Guests were particularly impressed by the students’ professionalism,” said Ross MacDonald, Conference Centre Manager. The course is the first in a series to be offered in the near future. Plans are afoot for the development of two new BA degrees within the BAM faculty, as RBS programmes; these are a BA(Hons.) in Corporate Sports and Talent Management and BA(Hons.) in Leisure and Tourism Management. Special features of these programmes will include a practical focus, a
period of placement with a suitable organization, and a specialist foundation for career entry into the fast expanding sports, entertainment, leisure and tourism industries, around the globe. “The programmes are being developed by an internal team with the help of an external consultant and should expect their first intake in September 2010,” says Dr Richard Gregson, EBS Academic Director. Meanwhile, events students, currently working on a couple of forthcoming major events, promise to impress even the strictest of critics.
Regent's students practice their harmonies at the first rehearsal for the Carol Service, under the direction of Julian Perkins, lecturer in classical music. From left to right: Stephen Winglass, University of New Hampshire; Leigh Blickley, Farifield University; S. Marisa Scott, Webster University and Maria Rettinger, Drury University. The service will be held on Wednesday, 3rd December at 6pm in Herringham Hall. Photo Emily Checkoway
Regent’s Private Eye
A new cat has arrived on campus, sparking a quiet feline revolution, writes Sarah Wiecek. The usurpation of Blackie was carried off smoothly. There were no beheadings, no dim-witted guards to drug, no bloodied hands to wash. Our humble philosopher, Blackie, was quietly relocated to the dungeon, and Leo, ‘The Timorous’, now reigns supreme over The Kingdom of Regent’s College Waiting Room. The red velvet throne is now home to a nervous grey expression, and the royal lounges are already iced in grey fuzz. Visitors to the Kingdom cast sideways glances at the young, cowering ruler, wondering whether decisions of collegial importance are safe in his hands (there are already whisperings that he has shafted such
matters off onto Austin, the enigmatic controller of the drawbridge, who sees and knows more than he will ever let on). Once, Blackie would have set visitors at their ease with his stately calm and yawning confidence. It was said that you could absorb a potent serenity through the cumulous-cloud softness of the fur behind his ears. So although it may look to us as though Blackie has resigned himself to prison life – that he has decided that it will give him a chance to work on his philosophical treatise on the aesthetic properties of Nesquik and paint his Dadaist masterpiece, Ceci n’est pas le lait – we are forgetting that behind his sleepy exterior lies a
mind busier than the ‘Buy it Now or Regret it Later’ racks at Topshop. Blackie knows that the Regent’s Kingdom is a strange and formidable place, full of unique Refectory soup combinations (beetroot and apple?!), speaking elevators and heel-ruining driveways. He knows that the royal subjects will only tolerate political ‘greyness’ for so long before they demand the black-and-white clarity of old. Leo must prove himself. In the meantime, Blackie will be biding his time in the dungeon, offering courses in ‘Circadian Rhythms and the Necessity of Power Naps’ and ‘How to Cook Soup without Beetroot’.
“Destination catering” comes to Regent’s by Dave Bolton
The eagle-eyed observer will have noticed that Regent’s College has had a slight facelift recently: the driveway replaced by a cobblestone effect that would not look out of place in a Victorian street and a reception area now almost indistinguishable from a check-in desk at Terminal 5. These changes have not been limited to the “front of house”. Over the last fourteen months the catering facilities have undergone a dramatic transformation. There is now a range of dining options available to students, staff and conference delegates. From hot meals prepared with weekly regional themes in the Refectory, freshly cooked pizzas and pastas, a grill bar for burger requirements and the introduction of a full table service restaurant, the caterers at Regent’s College, under the careful guidance of Rafa Azzopardi, Catering General Manager, and Richard Evans, Executive Chef, are trying to ensure that value for money also represents good quality. “Our aim is destination catering” says Richard, who has been working at the college for several years as part of the on-site caterers, Charlton House. He believes in offering different food services throughout the college to appeal to students and professional people alike. This market segmentation is echoed by his “partner in crime”, Rafa, who whilst also employed by Charlton, is keen to stress that they “work for Regent’s College first, these are our customers”. The customers are spoilt for choice. First to arrive was the sandwich bar which delivers made to order sarnies, paninis and a “hot sandwich of the day”. This was rapidly followed by the revamped coffee shop or “Brasserie” (which replaced 4
the old internet cafe) and its selection of muffins and trendy open-faced bagels. Adjacent to this is the restaurant, which is open for lunch from midday to 3pm, before it transforms into a wine bar at 5.30pm specializing in pizza and pasta. The Refectory, which is still serving sandwiches, hot meals and a salad bar will be the next to be transformed as Rafa’s team continue to “diversify the availability of food to students”. The major transformation has come with the redevelopment of the much unloved and formerly depressing Tuke Bar. It is now a bright, spacious area with four plasma screens showing live sport and music videos. A full range of beers and spirits is available and for those who prefer American food to Italian, there is a grill bar which serves up gourmet burgers, chicken wings, fries and nachos There is also a games room which boasts a pool table and plasma screen, hooked up to a state of the art video games console for those who fancy plugging in. Price-wise it is still cheaper than most pubs in the area, although there are some students who feel that “destination catering” is another piece of marketing speak to disguise price increases. There is a slight difference in the prices paid by students and delegates but one student from New Hampshire feels that the prices are still too high. “We get allocated £3 per meal when using the card system and that doesn’t get you a sandwich and a drink.” Like many Americans, he is also used to larger portions. However Catering Manager Rafa responds that “we have done a survey of comparable prices in the Baker Street area and believe that pound for pound, the food we are serving is cheaper here on campus.” The issues of price may not affect some students, but for those living
on campus, there is a feeling that they are a captive market without the opportunity to prepare their own meals. Matt from St. Louis was disappointed to find a lack of student catering facilities within Reid Hall. “Sometimes I don’t want to eat prepared food and would just prefer to kick back with grilled cheese and soup but all we have is a microwave and a kettle.” Great if you just want a pot noodle and popcorn, less satisfactory if you are used to cooking for yourself. Despite this, Rafa is quietly pleased with the transformation in catering services that has occurred at the college. “We are providing food for a private business school,” he says, “we’re not running a canteen.” But he is keen to stress that this is a “partnership between Regent’s facilities and Charlton House.” He admits that there have been some kinks to iron out in the new look facilities: for example there is still a queue at busier times in the sandwich bar, and an attempt to serve regional Spanish cuisine backfired due to “people not understanding the concept of tapas”. The restaurant (reviewed opposite) is, according to Rafa, still sorting out some “operational problems” but he and Richard know that it takes time and effort to provide the level of service that fits in with the college’s long term aims. “We are constantly looking at ways to improve the choices on offer,” says Richard, “which is why the menus are changed on a bi-monthly basis, and why we take into account seasonality and sustainability.” He glances at Rafa who has been quiet for some moments as if considering the next stage in his master plan for Regent’s domination. Rafa grins and then drops his bombshell, “We are hoping to open a Starbucks, but we don’t know where we’d put it,” he says with a wink .
Brasserie offers upmarket dining by Dave Bolton
Maybe there was a breakdown in communication but when I dined at the new Regent’s Brasserie, I was not expecting to get a portion of parsnips with my garlic bread starter. Honey roasted autumnal vegetables are not usually eaten with fresh garlic bread but every new restaurant has these little teething troubles.
Of course, in calling it new one forgets that this was previously the College Dining Room. As part of the changes taking place in the college, the full table service restaurant is the latest piece in the catering jigsaw. Whereas the previous Dining Room was a hive of inactivity, the Brasserie was buzzing with life. At 12.30pm every table was occupied and it seemed to be full of students taking advantage of the chance to enjoy individually prepared food in a more relaxed setting.
My colleague and I only had an hour to spare between classes, but we ordered a large glass of New Zealand white wine (Vindal Estate Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough), and sat back to discuss matters of importance. Our starter and surprise dish arrived quickly and, after some initial misgivings, we found surprisingly that they complemented each other quite nicely.
The menu (which changes bi-monthly) is interesting without being too pretentious and has a range of starters, salads, fresh pastas and larger seasonal main courses that cater for most palates. I had to make a choice between the Lamb Hotpot and the Pot Game Roast and, being a sucker for food shot by rich people, plumped for the game. It was well cooked, and served with mash and savoy cabbage the ideal size for lunch. My companion, being American, went for the aged vintage steak which was also cooked to his order and was so tempting that I distracted him by pointing out an attractive girl so that I could cut myself a small piece. It was good, but as the most expensive item on the menu (£12.95) it could have been served with more than the seven chunky chips on the side. At £38 for two including wine, the restaurant may seem slightly pricey but no one is suggesting that people eat there every day. What is important is that the food is prepared fresh and that the facility is there if people want to use it. And judging by the queue on Wednesday lunchtime, the demand is definitely there and will remain so as long as the service matches the expectations.
by Jeff Papis
NOVEMBER 26th 7.30pm Knapp Gallery AN AUDIENCE WITH ANN WIDDECOMBE The larger than life M.P. and novelist is set to delight the audience with her witty and controversial style. DECEMBER 3rd 6.00pm Herringham Hall COLLEGE CAROL SERVICE
DECEMBER 10th 5.30pm “THE IMAGE OF THE OTHER IN RENAISSANCE ART” Julia Weiner speaks. Open to students and guests as part of Webster’s 2008/9 International Speakers Seminar series. For venue details: email@example.com
FEBRUARY 26th 6.00pm EMANUEL UNGARO The world famous French designer will be talking to Regent’s College students about design and business. For venue details: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
APRIL 20th - 27th INTERNATIONAL WEEK: ASIA PACIFIC THEME A great opportunity for students and staff to celebrate our linguistic and cultural diversity. Find out more about Regent’s College international partner universities in the Asia Pacific Rim. Guest lecturers, cultural and recreational events, and the opportunity to sample Asia-Pacific cuisine. To contribute to or paticipate please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Amnesty speakers condemn Guantanamo Bay on Human Rights Day by Hugo Salvaterra
The American government believes that 9/11 marked the dawn of international warfare, while Amnesty International says it was an act of terrorism waged only against the U.S.A, according to two representatives from Amnesty International who spoke to students and staff at Regent’s College on 1 October to mark Human Rights Day. The audience of around 50 heard Rob Freer, International researcher on human rights first describe what Amnesty International stands for and why the organisation is against American international policy, followed by a vivid description of the Guantanamo Bay trials by Jill Heine, who as Amnesty International’s legal adviser has had the opportunity of visiting Guantanamo Bay prison three times. As a consequence of 9/11, the U.S.A. has waged war against terrorism all around the world, in a way that has alarmed the members of Amnesty International. Describing the arbitrary arrests of innocent people by the C.I.A. and the violation of human rights and international law, by shackling and detaining people for undetermined periods of time without proper proof and representation, Rob and Jill revealed what has been absent in media coverage and kept from the public. These tortures include hooding, isolation, sleep deprivation, stress positions, torture, stripping and physical assaults, all of which have taken place in “no man’s land” Guantanamo Bay, technically a part of Cuban
Rob Freer, Amnesty International´s researcher on USA and Jill Heine, Amnesty International legal advisor sovereign soil. This year marks seven years of detentions in Guantanamo, and for the same amount of time Amnesty have fought to see their proposal for a three branch resolution system enacted, which revises the current illegal decision-making process of detention. They want to see an end to the 14th of September American resolution which empowered the Bush administration to go to war and call it a Global war, authorizing them to use all military means with no geographical and forceful boundaries, and thereby legitimizing the violation of human rights. That resolution allows the American government, hypothetically, to go to a person’s nationstate, arrest and transport them to Guantanamo Bay
Dean rides in memory of dad
Dr. Judith Ackroyd, Dean of HASS at Regent’s College recently biked 25 miles to raise money for the Macmillan Cancer Support and the Cynthia Spencer Hospice in Northampton, where her father stayed before his death in June. “My father was diagnosed with cancer in late April. He spent his last weeks in the Cynthia Spencer Hospice where he died on 2 June,” said Dr. Ackroyd. “The hospice offered something very special for Dad and for the family and we felt really lucky and grateful that he was there.” Dr. Ackroyd trained with her friend, Michael Supple. “A twenty five mile cycle ride might not seem much to you, but to me it was climbing Everest,” she said. “When we trained we chatted as we ambled around the Northamptonshire villages. However, when it came to the event, which is not a race, our competitive instincts kicked in. No wonder I looked tomato red by the end! “It was a very moving event. It felt good doing something for the charity that made me ache and it felt good cycling for Dad.”
with no legal representation, and then do whatever they please, overriding any congressional and international law. Finally, they wish to see an annulment of the Guantanamo trials, characterized as being outrageously biased and unfair by Jill. “The judges are not independent; one cannot tell the difference between Guantanamo’s staff and these judges, as they don’t even bother to wear different uniforms; also this prosecution is not independent. Even in the heart of the American justice system, the concept of international war and Guantanamo´s trials is regarded with controversy and ambiguity, Amnesty says, as many sectors of the government, some judges and
Photo: Hugo Salvaterra
legislators see it as collateral spoils of war, not a criminal justice charge. This contradicts the way people are being judged in Guantanamo, as well as the premise for their arrest. There have been thousands of illegal arrests in Guantanamo, according to Amnesty, with 250 people still in there, eight of whom are due for death penalty. The celebration of the 60th anniversary of the U.N. Unilateral Declaration of Human Rights was marked in Regent’s by a series of events, film screenings and competitions. But it was this firsthand testimony by people who live and breathe by the Human Rights Act and international law that truly exemplified the meaning of this day.
Calling all Christians Since the days of the Early Church, Christians have always enjoyed meeting together. Throughout my 13 years at Regent’s College, there has usually been a small group of Christian staff and students meeting at lunch times once a week on campus. I have always been surprised that I have not met more Christian students or indeed that students do not organise their own Christian group. We must be about the only major college in the UK that does not have a ‘Christian Union’ run by the students. Publicity, together with timetabling difficulties, could be the reason. That is where this newspaper can help, by bringing together all Regent’s people who would like to check out the existing group. In just half an hour we include: a friendly chat and welcome, a short bible study, and prayer. Students away from their home church and country often find value in meeting up with other Christians on campus. Of course we welcome staff or students of any faith or none. If you want to ask questions, debate or oppose the Christian faith that’s fine! So if you would like to join us, at present we meet on THURSDAYS 1.30 – 2.00 pm in David Parrish’s office Darwin Room 110.
If that timetable slot does not suit you, please let us know as next semester the day and time can be changed. Dr Ian Brown RACL email@example.com 5
The American Elections “Live” from London by Erin Anderson
It is a completely different feeling experiencing an important American milestone in a foreign country. True, London newspapers offered many different stories on the Amerian election, but for Americans it still felt like second hand information.
“I sent in my absentee ballot, but it’s just not the same,” says Lee Blickleigh of New York. “This is the first presidential election that I have been old enough to participate in. I was really looking forward to going inside the voting booths.” One student, overhearing the election being discussed in the Refectory, went so far as to compare his deficient election experience to the absence of Thanksgiving while
Miss Venezuela: Beauty with a purpose
described how the unexpected turn of events occurred while she was taking a term off from the SPA programme at EBS in Spring 2007. “I came to Venezuela to take a break and at a store I bumped into an old friend who asked me if I wanted to compete in Miss World Venezuela,” she explains. “My first reaction was only to laugh at that mad proposal because I had never thought of such a thing,” she said, describing herself as a girl who would only wear sneakers to school and had no sense of make-up and fashion. “My curiosity pushed me to do the castings, but one side of me was hoping only to be rejected to go back to my routine,” she says, of the conflict she felt. “I took it as a compliment,” she said humbly. “However, I don’t take it to the extreme like the other girls in the competition.” Maria‘s own ambitions and background were far from the glamour and high profile world she will have as Miss Venezuela. “I had a dream that in my country was thought to be unachievable,” she says passionately. Her goal was to become an international business woman. “But the barrier I had was that coming from a less fortunate family it was so hard to study at a university in Venezuela, as it is so expensive,” she explains. Graduating high school at the age of 16, the determined young woman packed up and came to Europe in search of the right education. The first stop in her journey was Italy, where she worked in bars and restaurants to save money for school. This also helped her to learn the language while paying for her language studies at Education First, where she also mastered the French language.
Photos this page: Erin Anderson
studying in London. “This election is so huge that I considered not coming to London.” On the eve of 4 November, America’s Election Day, enthusiastic American students turned up to Tuke Sports Bar to tune in to the election coverage. Several students showed
up in their Democratic or Republican best. One female sported a gray shirt with a large blue donkey wrapped around the side, showing off her true-blue spirit. A McCain supporter wore a shirt which read ‘Friends Don’t Let Friends Vote Democrat.” Numerous
young voters showed their pride in Obama by wearing all types of merchandise emblazoned with his face. One of the more festive voters was Sara Birkofer, from Cincinnati, Ohio, who wore a sequined American Flag bow in her hair. As the coverage ran on the tv, the liquor
But Maria wanted more. After spending time working and studying in Italy and France, she came to London to learn English and to continue her education, applying to EBS. “When I entered the school for the first time the structure of the building is like a Harry Potter University... When I went inside the refectory, I saw the chandeliers and I said WOW!”
to keep going. He gave me the opportunity to believe and the next year I got the scholarship,” she said with great appreciation in her voice. With her experience of many cultures and languages, María felt sure that she wanted to work in international business. “I chose EBS for its international programs and the variety of cultures,” she said vibrantly, and “EBS is fulfilling my biggest dreams!” Since being at EBS, María feels like it is a second family to her. “Everyone has been amazingly helpful to me.” Perhaps not surprisingly then, Maria says she is “more excited to come back to Uni, than to do the Miss Venezuela Competition. This is something that is coming out of my heart, this desire. Words cannot describe what I feel to study in London. I’ve always wanted to do this since I was a young girl. I want to finish where I started and I will do it.” Like everything in her life, however, the Miss Venezuela competition has been a learning experience for her. Having been a devoted athlete in sports like high jump, Maria found that she needed to do more than just learn make-up and posing skills. “I’m an athlete, but they trained me to look like Barbie; it was so hard for me because while the other girls were losing weight I was trying to lose muscle for the competition. The girls gave me a name, ‘The Terminator’, because I was always so serious. With the competition I learned that you need to enjoy life more. You need to focus but love the way you focus.” There is so much more to the pretty picture on the page, particularly the determination Maria has. She’s not one to let any obstacles get in her path on the way of achieving her goals. “When I go back home to visit my family I remember where I come from. I come from a home of no luxuries.” While others believed she was dreaming too high, she had the drive to jump high. “Maria is a truly impressive young woman
with many interests and skills,” says Nick Bowen, the teacher she credits with supporting and inspiring her. “She is a speaker of several languages, a personal trainer, dancer, athlete, and supporter of her family back home in Venezuela. She is very determined and very passionate, but very modest about her achievements. She is one of the most remarkable people I have ever met and it has been a real privilege to know her.” María will be back at EBS this upcoming semester, before representing her country in South Africa next year. The student who only carried a tennis racket in her hand bag now carries makeup and wears heels. “I know I am more than beauty. Being able to succeed
“I applied to EBS hoping to get a scholarship but I didn’t get it the first year,” she said. Instead, she took a loan to pay for the full year and worked hard to pay back it all back. It was Nick Bowen, Programme Director, BAIB and Principal Lecturer in the Faculty of Business & Management, who helped Maria to pursue her goals. “I appreciate Nick Bowen for pushing me
everywhere you are, with everything you do is the most important to me.” This ride has taken María to where she least expected to be. It is not the title of beauty that makes her the young woman she is, but her qualities, experiences, and drive to succeed. María Milagros Véliz is the ideal candidate for a competition whose motto is: “Beauty with a Purpose.”
flowed and excitement rose. The results for each state were met by either elated cheering or enraged booing. Through the excitement, many people commented on the oddity of listening to results of the election from British news correspondents. “When the newscaster announced Obama as the next President of the United States in her British accent, it
Photo: Emily Checkoway
Chris Simonton celebrates Obama’s victory
really hit me how distanced I was from everything,” said Alex Randen from Minneapolis, Minnesota. The majority of the American students seemed very excited about Obama’s win and expressed their belief in him. Though students will be sad to leave London at the end of the semester, they are excited to return to the States under a new and enlightened President. “I am excited to see how the future pans out for Obama,” said Katie Dodson, from Littleton, West Virginia. “I know that America made the right choice.”
“I’m A Politician Get Me Out Of Here!” by Dave Bolton
On 1 November, 2008, a distinguished, elderly gentleman made an appearance on the NBC show Saturday Night Live. Smiling inanely, the cameras focussed in as he made the following impassioned plea to viewers, “Obama’s gonna have plenty of chances to be President. It’s my turn. Vote for me.” Senator John McCain made this live TV appearance three days before the United States chose to elect Barack Obama, and mocked his own presidential campaign. Some saw it as the final throw of the dice of a 72year-old man whose chances of being elected seemed to be vanishing quicker than a moose in the rifle sights of his running mate. In reality he was trying to endear himself to a generation used to seeing votes used in a different manner, and for whom failure had become entertainment. McCain is certainly not the first politician to believe that presenting a self-deprecating and “with it” attitude on television will propel them beyond the ballot box. Last year on the BBC’s annual Comic Relief appeal , Tony Blair (who was still Prime Minister) took part in a sketch with the comedienne Catherine Tate where he repeatedly used her catchphrase “am I bovvered?” whilst still appearing to be in charge of the country. As toe-curling as this was to watch, it was nothing compared to the decision of the independent MP for Bethnal Green, George Galloway, to take part in Channel 4’s “Celebrity Big Brother”, where to the delight of his detractors and the shame of his constituents he pretended to be a cat and have milk fed to him by one of the other housemates. Galloway claimed that he saw the show as an opportunity to (p)reach to a younger audience his feelings about the war in Iraq, but the clue to his appearance lies in
the title. The desire to be a celebrity seems to outweigh common sense. Common Sense and Anne Widdecombe, who spoke at Regent’s in November, are inextricably linked. Having been an MP since 1987, she has attempted to combine her duties to her constituency with an alternate media career that has seen her become one of the more recognizable faces in the country. A larger than life politician (in every way), she has dabbled with the ‘Celebrity’ side of politics by appearing in Celebrity Fit Club and even played herself in an episode of BBC’s Dr. Who. She has presented the satirical news programme ‘Have I Got News For You’ and since 2007 has fronted a programme called ‘Anne Widdecombe versus…’, which confronts issues such as gang culture, teenage prostitution and size zero models. Some consider that perhaps she should change her aggressive style and instead concentrate on trying to solve the problem but there are not many who wish to argue with the pint-sized dynamo. From talent shows such as X factor and American Idol, to reality TV shows such as Wife Swap, The Apprentice and Survivor, there is a never-ending stream of TV shows that feature members of the public. These shows are proving so successful that according to the Learning and Skills Council, one in seven UK teenagers hopes to gain fame by appearing on reality television. However it doesn’t stop there. There now exists a subset of programmes created exclusively for celebrities (and we use the term “celebrity” very loosely). Strictly Come Dancing, Dancing on Ice, Celebrity Wife Swap, Celebrity Scissorhands (hairdressing!) and the all-encompassing ‘I’m a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here’ are primetime slots, coveted by many and utilised by the few. The latest incarnation of I’m a Celebrity, which puts “well-known faces” in the jungle, will be
shown seven days a week for three weeks. Appearing on the show will be Robert Kilroy-Silk, a former Labour Party MP and Member of the European Parliament as well as Brian Paddick (Liberal Democrat) who stood for election as Mayor of London this year. With their fellow contestants unsure of who they are the last time they were subject to a public vote, they were so successful that they have ended up in the jungle instead of elected office. Paddick must be feeling especially bitter, as he lost the Mayoral election to Boris Johnson, politician who turned media recognition into an art form and who has since given up his TV commitments to concentrate on doing the job of running London. So is it ever going to end? Is celebrity the driving force behind society? Was Andy Warhol overestimating the amount of time each person will be in the spotlight? Does anyone want to do a normal job? If politicians believe themselves to be celebrities and more importantly if the public perceive them to be celebrities, then the television is the perfect platform for a politician to try and get his or her message across., We should not be surprised by the appearance of politicians on ‘Celebrity’ TV. They see themselves as representatives of the people, and if recognition has to be gained through a mouth full of cockroaches and sheep testicles, at least they think they will have their chance to reach millions of households. It might work. In the USA, the public voted for a President who looked good on TV, used the media as a platform for advancement rather than self-deprecation and who has become the next American Idol without having to sing a single song. And John McCain? Check with his agent, as he may now be available for the next bush tucker challenge that will put him back into the public eye.
Department of Languages and Cross Cultural Studies wins Award by Joseph Mueller
The Department of Languages and Crosscultural Studies in the BAM Faculty has been voted this year’s winner of the Threlford Memorial Cup, which is awarded annually by the renowned Chartered Institute of Linguists for “fostering the study of languages”. The Chartered Institute of Linguists, founded in 1910, is a language assessment body that aims to promote the learning and use of modern languages and improve the status of professional linguists. It offers vocational qualifications in a wide selection of languages to meet the needs of industry, commerce and the public services, among which the Diplomas in Translation, in Public Service Interpreting, and the Certificate in Bilingual Skills are highly respected qualifications. The Institute has 6,500 Fellows, Members and Associate Members throughout the world, and is actively involved in language issues at both a national and an international level. The award of the Threlford Memorial Cup has a long history, having first been presented
fEBSl’s Michael Scriven, left with Josef Mueller receive the Threlford Cup
in 1935 by Lord Threlford, the founder of the Institute of Linguists, who was, amongst other things, Governor of Fiji. Josef Mueller, Head of the Department, and Michael Scriven, Director of EBSL, attended the prize-giving ceremony on 18 November in Portland Place. The ceremony was held to award the Institute’s various annual prizes to candidates who had achieved outstanding results in the Institute’s examinations and had travelled from all over the UK as well as from overseas to receive their prizes. The Institute also awards three general prizes, the most prestigious of which is the Threlford Memorial Cup itself. Hilary Maxwell-Hyslop, the Institute’s Director of Examinations, referred to descriptions of the prize as “the world’s greatest trophy for fostering the study of languages” and “of marvellous beauty” when she introduced this award. The actual prize was handed over by the President of the Institute, Lady Brewer, who commended the European Business School London and Regent’s College for giving the study of languages the importance that it deserves in a globalised world. The cup, enormous in size, remains with the Institute, but the College received a medal to keep, and the award will appear on the Institute of Linguists’ website. 7
Survey says tuition fees should go towards better facilities by Christopher May
The ability to overcome adversity and to persevere is a useful skill for a student. However, it is also a school’s responsibility to provide students with the essential tools they need and that tuition fees should cover. Since the beginning of the semester, students were having a continuing difficulty in accessing the internet from their dorm rooms. The students were informed after they arrived, not before, that the internet routers installed in the dorms did not support the latest Apple operating system, Leopard. This meant that any student with the new operating system on their computers had to use the lobby computers, denying them privacy. It was not long ago that it became quite difficult for students to print documents due to printers not working. Many students had to inform their professors that they were unable to print their assignments and would have to email them in, putting the
responsibility for their work in the hands of the professors. At the same time, students in the dorms were finding that doing their laundry was proving difficult because of a lack of available machines and the poor performance they delivered. Some claimed they had to use all of the available dryers just to warm their clothes to a damp condition. The discussion and disquiet over these issues has been increasing among students over the past eight weeks.The catalyst of the frustration, some may argue, is the impressive new main entrance into Regent’s College that some students have nicknamed “The Starship Enterprise”, due to its spaceship-like appearance. Many claim to feel that their tuition money is not being used properly and that their education is taking a back burner to the aesthetics of the school itself. The fear that their education is not being taken seriously by the administration has set a steadily growing wall between the administration and some of the students. In order to gauge this dissatis-
The fully kitted out music room
faction, a survey was conducted among 37 students to find out where they believe their tuition money is being spent wisely and where it is not. The tallied numbers showed that all 37 students feel that too much of their tuition money is going towards the new foyer and not enough money is going towards properly working facilities such as functioning internet or printers. Other areas on the students’ lists of concerns included better dining and dorm room furnishings, more school trips and more London interaction in classes. Gym and library hours, cleaning services, ID card problems and unannounced closures of certain offices also were the answers provided when asked to write in their personal grievances. Of course not all grievances are up to the administration to remedy and students have to do their part. But if the concerns of the student body are not addressed in some form, their dissatisfaction will be passed on and the college may suffer, with the sad result that future students may miss a wonderful opportunity to study here.
The Music Room Hidden Regents 2
by Dave Bolton
We all have hopes and dreams when we enter college. Some aspire to success in the financial world, others yearn to become the next Hunter S. Thompson and there are those for whom the Playboy mansion is considered a worthwhile goal. Then are those who want nothing more than to chill out, strap on a Fender Stratocaster and lay down some smoking blues riffs. For you, welcome to the Regent’s 8
College Music Room. Tucked away in a corridor between the Darwin and Tuke buildings and located uncomfortably close to the narcissistic pleasures of the gym, the Music Room is the perfect place to indulge in fantasies of being the next Jimmy Page/James Blunt/the bloke off American Idol. Equipped with three guitars, a bass, keyboard, drums and the appropriate amplification, the room has been an underused facility in recent years but has acquired a mythical status amongst
the study-abroad students. Some small problems exist because although rock n’ roll has no rules, the room does. It can only be used after 9.00 pm on weekdays (not soundproofed), there is no smoking or drinking allowed and you can only book it for 24 hours at a time. Authority is keen to stress that it is a MUSIC ROOM not a PARTY ROOM, dude, which sort of defeats the object but at least it’s there. And who knows, one day Regent’s College could be name-checked at the MTV awards. We can all dream.
Time for a whinge: Things that get me slightly steamed at Regent’s by Dave Bolton
Locked computers when users decide to disappear to do something else and don’t return There’s nothing more frustrating than trawling around for a free computer only to find that it has been locked by a user who has probably just gone for a smoke, a coffee or perhaps even (shock horror) a class The use of the quad as an exercise in eliminating fresh air Despite signs all over the place that say No Smoking, and others which point to the designated smoking area, trying to have a Latte without smelling tobacco is impossible. Smokers apparently ignore these signs a) because the non smoking area is more than ten yards from the coffee shop and b) it looks like an abandoned bus shelter. The lack of enforcement by Regent’s to stop people smoking in the quad Apart from the health risks, it doesn’t look very attractive when conference delegates run the gauntlet of smoke on their way to their conference facilities, let alone trying to eat their pasta salad and salmon en croute. People (normally students) paying for items costing under £2 with a debit/credit card Surely nobody comes to college with no money at all. Standing in a line waiting to be served whilst people pay for a £1.85 coffee or 80p water with plastic is an exercise in strained patience. Even worse is when somebody buys individual drinks in the bar using a card and does it all night! Heres a quick tip: those things in walls near the tube station are called ATMs and if you ask them nicely they might give you some cash which would eliminate the need for using your card to buy coffee and making me wait for you. The ATM at college which normally doesn’t work If this machine was able to dispense cash on a regular basis and didn’t charge £1.99 for the privilege of giving out OUR money, then maybe the above problem could be solved The shortage of working printers/photocopiers See comments above, minus the money part. Lots of students equals significant printing of work equals needs well maintained copiers which contain paper. Hardly rocket science. The price of car-parking Any chance of student discounts or even the ability to buy a pass for the semester? Obviously when you consider the contents of the car-park, maybe cash isn’t a problem. But some of us drive cars that cost only slightly more than a Gucci handbag, and the £1.70 per hour charge, when you are in at 9am and leave at 7pm, puts a slight dent in the pocket. And don’t get me started on where to put the little yellow chip now that it has replaced the parking ticket. The cars parked in the car-park Pop Quiz: Do the Aston Martins, Bentleys, Porche Cayennes (yes, there are several of these £80,000 SUV’s), BMW’s, Mercs and the orange Lambourghini, belong to a) the teaching staff or b) the catering staff or c) the students? Answers on a postcard and the winner will receive an hour’s free parking courtesy of The Regent.
Regent’s College Resident mathematical genius, Ian Brown, wants to know the answers to the following puzzles. The first person to submit the correct answers – with explanations of their workings – will receive a prize. e-mails to:- firstname.lastname@example.org
OPEN THE BOX! WHICH ONE ... CASH OR CUCUMBER? In a TV quiz game, contestants who reach the final and answer all questions correctly are allowed to claim a prize in the following way. The contestants have to choose one of three closed boxes, knowing that: one of them contains £10,000 the other two each contain half a cucumber. They select a box and, before they open it, the quiz presenter opens one of the other boxes, which he knows contains half a cucumber.
After showing them this, he then gives contestants a chance to change their choice before opening a box and claiming its contents as their prize. The audience shouts: “open the box” ... “change”! Should a contestant change or not? Or does it make no difference?
What would you advise a contestant to do and why?
WEIGHING THE BABY A baby was giving trouble at the clinic and would not keep still to be weighed. So the nurse had to hold the baby and they both got on the scales together. I read their combined weight as 73 kg. Then the nurse got off and I held the baby and got on the scales while the nurse read the combined weight of the baby and me as 87 kg. Finally I held the nurse while the baby read the scales to find that the combined weight of the nurse and me was 140 kg. Find the weight of the baby.
Sell us your city: Sydney, Australia
The idea behind this segment is for students and staff of Regent’s College to promote their city of origin from the point of view of a local. We all know to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco or touch the remains of the Wall in Berlin, but we would like your suggestions for things to do that are off the beaten path. Hopefully you will convince some of us to visit! by Sarah Wiecek
The curves of Sydney Harbour Bridge, the white sails of Jorn Utzon’s Opera House and the sprawling city beaches are general attractions of Sydney, but if you have a couple of days in this glorious hometown of mine, I would suggest visiting:
Newtown Slightly west of the city is the haunt of many a Sydney University student: Newtown. King Street is known for its vintage clothes stores, bohemian cafés, second-hand bookstores, Thai eateries, street art, colourful nightlife and eclectic, ‘anything goes’ population. For those of you who feel that London’s coffee shops are more depressing than a bag of stale pop-rocks, head to Campos (193 Missenden Rd). They treat coffee the way it is meant to be treated: as rocket science. The staff of this tiny, independent haven are dexterous and passionate about what they do, delivering brews both photogenic and delicious. If your delighted nostrils can’t lead you there, you will recognise it from the line out of the door. After your coffee, head to Madame Fling Flong (level 1, 169 King St). Located above Soni’s Mediterranean Restaurant on King Street, this retro bar is a little-known retreat with Victorian-style lounges, plush lampshades and laid-back music. Serving mezze and cheese
platters, along with colourful cocktails and churros with chocolate sauce for dessert, on Tuesday nights they screen classic, cult and foreign movies for free. Getting there: From Sydney Central Station, hop on a train to Newtown Station or catch buses 411/ 423 from Broadway.
The Lower Blue Mountains If you can’t be bothered going all the way up to Katoomba to visit the Three Sisters rock formation (which is usually busier than Oxford street on a Saturday), but would like to experience the Australian ‘bush’, I would suggest Glenbrook in the lower Blue Mountains. It’s only an
hour by train from Sydney Central station, and there are some easy bushwalks to secluded, mysterious natural swimming holes such as Jellybean Pool. There is also a walk to Red Hands Cave, where you can stand in awe of Aboriginal rockpaintings dating back at least 1600 years. If you want to meet some Australian creatures that aren’t behind fences, you could also go to Euroka clearing: a green (for Australia) camping ground visited by wild grey kangaroos and goannas. If bushwalking and camping doesn’t appeal to you, however, you could head to nearby Mash café (19 Ross St) – one of the funky cafés peppered along this thoroughfare. Mash promotes itself as an ‘ethical’ restaurant, serving inventive, hearty dishes with organic ingredients, free-trade coffee and a carbon footprint as close to zero as they can manage. Getting there: From Sydney Central station, take a country train headed towards Lithgow or Katoomba, and get off at Glenbrook station. If you’d prefer to drive, hop
on the M4 Motorway at the end of Parramatta Rd, and stay on it until you’re up the mountain.
Top 5 Sydney Activities Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge Visit the historic ‘Rocks’ area Catch a Ferry to Manly Admire the view from Lady Macquarie’s Chair Visit the military museum at North Head
To share hidden treasures from your home city, simply email email@example.com.
Couchsurfing: travel the world for free
by Sarah Wiecek
You push open the door to your hotel room and put down your bag of trinkets from tourist shops near the Eiffel Tower. You have eaten Foie Gras, strolled along the Seine and watched painters in Montmartre, but somehow you still feel like there’s something you’re missing out on. All day you have watched locals going about their mysterious business, wondering what their lives must be like. You went to that café praised by your Lonely Planet guide, but surely those strangers walking by would be able to suggest somewhere just as good and yet unblemished by other tourists. If you’ve ever felt that guidebooks only scratch the surface of what is available; if you have ever felt like an ‘outsider’ peering at foreign secrets from your hotel window; if you’ve ever wondered how on Earth you’re going to afford to visit all these fabulous destinations promoted by smarmy travel-show hosts, then Couchsurfing is for you. Couchsurfing, as you can hopefully surmise from its title, involves crashing on the couches of locals around the world. The Couchsurfing Project (www.couchsurfing.com) is a not-for-profit international community of travellers offering up their couches, their insiders’ information and their lives with fellow members. Joining - and surfing - is free. Once you have signed up and created a profile for yourself, you
can search for one of 754,146 couches around the world. All you have to do is scroll through the hundreds of matches for your chosen destination, looking for someone with similar interests who might be able to host you on your trip. Then you send them a wonderfully flattering request outlining your travel details and why you have selected them in particular. That person replies with a yay or a nay. If it’s a yay you exchange all your travel details and arrange a time and place to meet. If it’s a nay you take a look at the other thousands of couches on offer and try again. Ideally Couchsurfing is a reciprocal set-up, but there is no obligation for you to offer your couch to anyone, or to accept everyone who writes to you. Many members simply list themselves as available to meet up for coffee or a drink, so if you can’t go without a linen service and mints on your pillow, you can still meet up with locals while you’re travelling.
Is it Safe?
Apart from the ‘vouching’ system that the site has in place, each Couchsurfing profile has a ‘references’ section where you can read about that person from the perspective of other Couchsurfers and friends. If a member has loads of positive references from people who have stayed with them, waxing lyrical about their cooking and their pet angelfish who could play the lute,
then you can be fairly certain this person is trustworthy. Of course you have to use your own discretion in each case, and it is usually an idea to have some sort of back-up plan in place so that if you decide you don’t feel safe with this person, you know how to get to the nearest hostel.
Is it Reliable?
In general, the system is very reliable, so long as both the host and the surfer understand that transportation systems do not always run smoothly, and that updates and changes may be necessary. If you have exchanged phone numbers, obviously it will be easier to liaise when something goes wrong. Occasionally you will hear nightmare tales of hosts dropping out at the last minute, leaving travellers stranded in a foreign land with no accommodation. But Couchsurfers are a generous bunch, so for every horror story you hear there are just as many examples of hosts who have come to the rescue, herding up all the little lost lambs and easing their pain with hot chocolates in their flat overlooking the Amalfi Coast.
What are Couchsurfers like?
The Couchsurfing community is large and varied. Although the average age of members is 27 and the USA has the greatest number of
surfers, according to the website there are 161 members aged between 80-89 and there are also 49 members situated in Antarctica. Since the project is free, you might be led to believe everyone is cash-strapped and you’ll be sleeping on couches that outdate Machu Picchu. This is not necessarily the case. Of course one of the main attractions of Couchsurfing is that it is free, but there are hundreds of thousands of members, and they are as varied as the cities they are sprinkled throughout. For example, sometimes you might find older couples whose children have left home and who genuinely enjoy putting up travellers in spare bedrooms, cooking them traditional dishes and acting as local tourguides. The spirit of Couchsurfing is to share and experience and learn, to be generous and gracious and enthusiastic, to reveal the best parts of your homeland to others. Most Couchsurfers embrace these ideas wholeheartedly.
What to expect
Expect a large degree of generosity and happy coincidences. Recently I had a CSer from Canada contact me with a free ticket to the Radiohead Concert in London. One of his friends had dropped out at the last minute and, not wanting to go alone, he turned to CS. He said that he chose me because we had one very important thing in common: not a
shared passion for Mr. Yorke’s voice, but a deep and abiding love for those dangerously addictive devils in a blue packet: Crispy M&Ms. If I hadn’t listed nonsense like that in my profile, it may never have happened.
What not to expect
CS can be a fickle place. Plans change and people do not always follow through with what they say they are going to do. However, most CSers seem to understand this, so do not feel rude if your plans change, and do not feel ‘slighted’ if your request goes unanswered. Hosts in popular cities receive loads of requests every day, and it is not always feasible for them to reply to everyone. Just keep trying. Also, although hosts have invited you into their homes, they may still have to work or have other commitments to attend to. Each CS host is different – some may offer you a spare key so you can come and go as you please, but others are understandably more wary about doing this. Likewise, some may be fully involved and take you around everywhere personally, while others may just give you a few tips and leave you be. Try to be flexible: it might be necessary for you to kick about the city for a while until your host finishes work. Hotels and hostels will always have their place, of course, and
Couchsurfing: travel the world for free 9 >> Couchsurfing is not for the places where you overlap. In everyone. But you’ve ever wanted to experience actual locals while travelling, rather than looking from the outside like a hungry cat watching a goldfish, then give Couchsurfing a try. There are potential friends waiting for you around the world.
A true account of the positives of CS
In Brussels I was introduced to French comic books by a Monty Python loving Frenchman. In Amsterdam I doubled on a bicycle with someone I had only known for a day and a half. In Hamburg I snacked on Singaporian cuisine while watching the F1 night-race in a restaurant overlooking the Harbour. None of these things were planned or paid for, but for me, the financial aspect of CS is only one part of its appeal. Apart from insiders’ travel tips, the other major draw-card is the chance to break down that sense of ‘cultural alienation’ that can happen when you’re travelling. It is easy to feel disconnected in a foreign country: to view other people and places as curiosities rather than noticing all
Paris, for example, when I saw kids playing pétanque in a park off the Champs-Élysées, I formed the opinion that their childhood was almost unrecognisable from my own. Where they went on field trips to the Palace of Versailles, the best we could manage in Australia was a trip to Warragamba Dam. These early differences seemed to explain the ‘impenetrability’ of people on the street. However, in Paris I was staying in a hotel, and therefore only meeting ‘locals’ to order my coffee or croque monsieurs. When I Couchsurfed in Brussels, my host was a Frenchman, and I discovered that our childhoods were perhaps not so different. His bookshelf had all of my favourites, only with French titles like Sur La Route and Père et Fils. While I was there we quoted – in unexpected but perfect unison – ‘This parrot is definitely deceased!’, discussed psychology, philosophy and music, and spent hours playing Mario Kart battle-mode on his Super Nintendo, finally calling it a draw at 13-13. I was genuinely surprised that a kid from France and a kid from Australia could have found so much in common.
Faulty Fridge ignites Reid Hall
Photo: Amanda Remling
by Amanda Remling
I woke with a start as the fire alarm pierced the quiet at Reid Hall dormitory at 3:57 A.M. on Monday, October 13. I headed groggily down the three flights of stairs thinking that the alarm was a drill or prank, due to previous episodes in the dormitories. When other students and I hit the first floor it was clear that this was no drill or joke. A haze of smoke had started filtering into the stairway, and the glowing orange of the fire could be seen in the kitchen. On reaching the ground floor, we were shuffled outside as firefighters
quickly made their way upstairs to the kitchen. Other students were just as shocked at realizing that the fire alarm was no prank. “I thought it was a false alarm until I saw the smoke,” said American student Lianne Vivianne. After 45 minutes of waiting outside, students on the ground, second and third floors were allowed back to their rooms. First floor students had to find a friend whose floor they could crash on for the night. The cause of the fire was an electrical problem with the refrigerator. The room has already been gutted, repainted, and tiled but is still lacking a refrigerator.
Ponyboy and the Switchblades: Tuke Bar
Ponyboys from left to right: Brendan Smith, Eric Zorumski and Craig Kowalchuk by Dave Bolton
When the Tuke Bar was refurbished this year, we were promised that it would not only be available to watch sport, but also available for parties and events. This would explain how Ponyboy and the Switchblades were able to make their debut performance barely two months after first hiring out the music room. Coming on stage after the bar had been treated to an hour of unrelenting (and unwanted) techno, the band coped well with the slight setback of having to quickly sound-check before the assembled audience. Once this formality was completed, the “study abroad” band were able to treat us to their selection
of Americana, ranging from ZZ Top to Weezer and including the almost obligatory Creedence track (Fortunate Son). As a nod to their London hosts, the six piece included The Kinks’ “Lola”, although it took two attempts for the lead singer to get the lyrics correct. Highlights of the evening weren’t the looks on the faces of the girls who had dressed in bedsheets for a supposed Toga party in the bar, but the inclusion of Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side”. Its simple sounding but notoriously tricky bassline carried off with aplomb. Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues” chugged along nicely, probably the first (and last) time it will be heard in the Tuke Bar. Conscious that there were togas on display, Ponyboy finished with
Want to work on the Regent?
Regent's launches Newspaper Production course in Spring From next term, RACL is launching a new course in Newspaper Production, in which students will oversee the production of The Regent newspaper. The course members will decide on stories to cover, write and photograph the content, design and produce the layout, and sell the advertising for the paper. The Regent is currently produced by student and staff volunteers from HASS, BAM and EBS who like to cover stories and
take photos, and the paper will still welcome their participation. The teachers for the new course are Leslie Viney and Phil Grey, who currently oversee The Regent newspaper and the Photojournalism course. The requirement for joining the Newspaper Production class is completion of either Fundamentals of Reporting or Introduction to Media Writing, or by permission of the instructor. We hope to attract lots of new talent and create a great paper.
Photo Emily Checkoway
“Louie Louie”, tipping their cap to a perennial college favourite and filling the dance floor with a mixture of female sheets and fashion. There were cries for more at the end of a too short set. Acoustics and interference aside (the levels on the mixing desk were altered by an unknown student), this was a brave decision by the management to let a fledgling band play live, one that appears to have paid off, as both they, and the audience had a great time. In cockney rhyming slang, the word “pony” is not overly complimentary, but considering the short amount of time that Ponyboy and the Switchblades have been together, they certainly seem to have talent. With more practice, they might even be able to remember the lyrics to Lola.
Spit it out!
Take a moment while you swot for forthcoming end of semester exams to consider what your low Webstonians are getting up to. The YIM Times (the student newspaper of Webster University Thailand), reporting on the recent on-campus Watermelon Festival, contained the following: “There were three teams Student Team A, Student Team B, and the Staff. The festival began with the spitting contest, in which contestants competed to see who could spit watermelon seeds the furthest. The first to attempt the spitting was Brian, who didn’t do quite as well as Brendon. The staff weren’t as good with spitting seeds either.The first victory went to Student Team A” Thanks to Pannarat Jaliyawatwong
Free London BOND NOËL 20th November 5.00 - 8.00pm Old Bond Street & Burlington Gardens Bond Street will be transformed into a winter wonderland with Christmas lights, snow, reindeer, sleighs and story-tellers. To raise money for the Great Ormond Street Children’s Charity, there will also be a luxury Bond Street Tombola, with the chance to win £10,000 worth of prizes from Asprey, Cartier, DKNY, Bally, Tiffany & Co., Montblanc and Burberry.
BETWEEN THE COVERS: WOMEN’S MAGAZINES AND THEIR READERS 1st November – 25th April Monday - Friday 9.30am - 5.30pm Thursday 9.30am - 8.00pm Saturday 10.00am - 4.00pm The Women’s Library, 25 Old Castle Street,London E1 7NT This colourful new exhibition showcases the evolution in women’s magazines from 1600 to the present day, charting the stories and successes of some of the most influential titles. It is a chance to explore the changing lives and aspirations of women over time, and the role of magazines play in both reflecting and influencing their readers.
PAMPERING SATURDAYS AT VAPIANO Saturdays from 29th November 12.00 midday - 6.00pm Christmas Vapiano, 19-21 Great Portland Street, London W1W 6QB After a hectic day of Christmas shopping, head to Vapiano. This new Italian bar and restaurant on Great Portland Street is offering relaxing head and neck massages, face mapping, manicures and beauty advice courtesy of Dermologica. While receiving your complimentary beauty therapy, you can also sample items from their menu.
TURNER PRIZE 2008 Open until 18th January 2009 Tate Britain Millbank, London SW1P Monday - Friday 9.00am - 5.50pm First Friday of the month until 9.00pm The Turner Prize is one of the best known and possibly most controversial prizes for Modern Art in the world. An independent panel judges the work of nominees, and four shortlisted artists showcase their works at the Tate Britain before the winner is announced in December.
COLOGNE CHRISTMAS MARKET AT SOUTHBANK CENTRE 21st November - 23rd December Southbank Centre/The London Eye SE1 8XX
Daily 10.00am - 10.00pm Experience a Germanflavoured Christmas at the South Bank Centre. A range of ‘authentic’ wooden chalets selling traditional hand-made gifts, delicate tree ornaments, tin toys and candles will line the Queen’s Walk. You might taste a Glühwein (German Mulled Wine), sip a Kölsch (Cologne Beer), or overindulge in roasted nuts, gingerbread hearts and other Christmas goodies. DAZZLE 17th November - 10th January Monday - Saturday 10.00am 10.00pm National Theatre, Olivier Foyer South Bank, London SE1 9PX Dazzle is a contemporary jewellery showcase at the National Theatre. Exhibiting the work of 77 leading international jewellery designers, along with emerging young talents, you can browse or buy from a dazzling array of accessories, tokens and costume pieces.
FILM PREMIERE: ‘AUSTRALIA’ 10th December Odeon Leicester Square Arrive from midday Watch the stars arriving for the London Premiere of Baz Luhrmann’s highly anticipated new film ‘Australia’. Possible appearances by Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman, David Wenham, Jack Thompson and Bryan Brown.
CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING IN TRAFALGAR SQUARE 4th December 6.00pm Trafalgar Square Since 1947 the Norwegians have provided London with a Christmas tree as a symbol of gratitude for British support of Norway during World War II. Many Londoners consider the lighting of this Norwegian tree as the beginning of the countdown to Christmas.
BANKSIDE WINTER FESTIVAL AND FROST FAIR 12th December - 21st December 10.00am - 8.00pm Bankside Riverside (between Tate Modern and Shakespeare’s Globe) In celebration of the fairs that used to take place on a frozen Thames 100 years ago, The Bankside Winter Festival and Frost Fair is a chance to buy last-minute Christmas gifts from 40-50 arts and crafts stalls, along with festive food to nibble on while you’re there. There will be a Frost Fairthemed lantern parade on Friday from 4.30pm, with around 270 local school children parading lanterns of ice-skaters, dancing bears and roasted chestnut sellers.
Don’t become a crime victim by Curran Padake
One-third of all students in the UK will become the victims of crime, according a recent Home Office study. Theft accounts for 28% of these crimes and 13% will be violent in nature. The good news is that there are simple steps you can take toward becoming one the two-thirds who manage to avoid crime. Watch hunting animals in their natural habitat and it can clearly be seen that they choose their victims with care. Lions and tigers will not just charge at a group of wildebeest or gazelles in the hope of catching one, but instead select one which appears to be the easiest target – usually a very young or very old animal that will put up the least resistance. Street criminals behave in a similar way. Fortunately, we don’t have to behave like their prey. Those who have experienced street crime will confess that they never saw it coming. Until they were targeted they had never given much thought to their personal safety awareness. I will look at some simple but effective measures that can be taken to increase awareness in order to avoid becoming a victim. Bearing in mind that the thief runs the risk of being caught every time he commits his crime, he wants to know that his efforts will pay off. This is all the easier if what he’s after is on display. Here are some simple tips for carrying high-value items in a safer way: Valuable items are safer if kept in pockets rather than in bags, as bags can be snatched whereas pockets are harder to gain access to. Inside-jacket pockets and the
front pockets of jeans are best because there is little chance of pickpockets gaining access without you seeing them do it. If you must keep items in a bag, use any inner pockets that the bag may have and make sure it is zipped up tightly. Carry the bag in front of your body rather than on your back or hanging off your arm. Try to avoid walking down the street whilst talking on your mobile phone. If you must use it in public, keep the conversation brief. When you are talking with somebody the brain becomes engaged in the conversation and less aware of external stimuli. Beware of walking around with your MP3 player plugged into your ears. Not only are you advertising that you have something of value, but also that you have closed off one of your senses. If you do feel compelled to listen to music have the volume at a level where you can still hear what is happening around you. Use discretion when choosing what jewelry or designer gear you want to wear before going out. If you know you may be traveling through a rougher part of town, think twice about what you wear. When sitting in public places like a café, restaurant or bar, try to sit with your back to a wall. This makes it harder for a thief to steal from your bag or pocket as they are unable to approach you without you seeing them. If you must place your bag on the floor, put your foot through the strap. When interviewed about how they selected victims, muggers repeatedly state that they chose those who appeared unaware of their surroundings. Looking unaware also means that the victim
is less likely to resist the robbery. Physical size and gender is not a strong factor in the mugger’s selection process. Generally they choose those who they believe are oblivious to their presence. Awareness = confidence. To make yourself a less attractive target follow these three simple steps next time you are out and about…
Straighten your spine Confident people stand up straight. Don’t slouch or roll your shoulders forward as this kind of body posture implies timidity and lack of confidence.
Lift your chin up You don’t need to look like a statue, but by keeping your head raised you look more assertive and increase awareness of your surroundings.
Increase your pace If you walk fast, it looks like you know where you’re going. This also speeds up the body’s metabolism making you more mentally alert.
The best form of self-defence is to not be where the danger is. Adopting a state of alertness not only reduces your chances of being selected as a target of street crime, it also means you see the threat before it sees you. Curran Padake and Sharif Haque are Safety Protection instructors with the Close Quarter Combatives Group, who advise the police, citizens and military around the world. Curran works as CiTRIX administrator in the IT department at Regent’s College Further information on seminars can be found at: http://tactical-protection.com/seminar.asp
An interview with Curran Padake by Hugo Salvaterra
Your next line of defence is to be able to talk yourself out of the violent confrontation. If this fails then you should fight like a Samurai warrior. This is what we teach in our seminars. Getting physical is always your last option. Obviously this depends on what part of the world you live in, but hey that’s a whole new topic!
How long have you been involved in martial arts/self protection tactics? I have been involved in martial arts since the age of 14. My experience in various systems spans over 10 years.
What is your martial arts/protection tactics training background? I started in Karate and trained for nearly 6 years. Whilst I was at university I studied Wing Chun Kungfu and afterwards I trained in a Filipino-based fighting system. I got involved in self-protection a few years ago after studying reality based self-defence systems. I am currently a certified instructor of SFC Combatives. This is a professional body instructing the military, police and public citizens around the world. (See http://www.hockscqc.com/).
What is the basic philosophy of protection tactics? I always stress awareness and avoidance should be your first line
Photo: Hugo Salvaterra
of defence. Learning to be aware of what’s going on around you means you are less likely to put yourself in a dangerous situation. I know this sounds clichéd but prevention is better than the cure. People who experience violent attacks know something is wrong before it happens. Learn to trust your instincts.
Have you ever been a victim of a street crime? If so, can you elaborate on what and how it happened? I grew up in a very rough part of the UK a town called Middlesborough. It has been voted the UK’s second worst town, it’s really not that bad believe me! It’s really a very beautiful place, lots of countryside. I went to a school where I constantly got bullied and beat up. One day I was on the way back from school I got stopped by a gang of youths who proceeded to rob me at knife point. I went through months of trauma after the attack and this led me on the path to study the martial arts. Another time whilst in Bosnia I was threatened by
The Blackberry Clique, darling... by Francesca Barrow
Once it may have been enough to have the best grades, a doublebarrelled last name, a celebrity hair-dresser, the hottest guy in school, a job with the most glamorous magazine or PR Company, or even a Chihuahua named Tinkerbell. But today, to be a part of the cool league you must upgrade. In addition to your iPod, Marlboro Lights and Hermes purse, you must possess a Blackberry in your Balenciaga. No phone has ever had the social value of the Blackberry. It bestows on the privileged a quiet confidence that you are part of something greater; a network that guarantees your success. With it you will never suffer from social paralysis; you will have the right friends, the important contacts and the VIP invitations which signify being in the best political standing possible. Vodafone salute you, as do their best customers, the Blackberry Clique. Congratulations on your membership, darling, The Blackberry emerged one blessed day in 1999 with its focus being on function rather than appearance. Its popularity was based on the fact it was like a palm pilot but better. At that time, it combined a phone with e-mail and diary, making it the perfect solution
for those working business types who need to be up to date on meetings, and in continuous contact with clients, while on the go. While articles in Vogue glamorised the Blackberry and hinted that it would become more than just a business solution, it was primarily just the latter. The older models don’t even have an in-built camera. Phone companies have continuously tried to outdo each other by making them the smallest, or the funkiest flip phones, or the best built-in cameras. But for Blackberry, the addition of the messenger, camera and option to install applications has turned it from a business tool into a device that those in the know need to have. From passing the time in class by instantly chatting with friends, or browsing the internet during business meetings, the Blackberry has fast become a vital instrument in the Facebook era. What is the point of a phone if you can’t message your peers and colleagues in a way that the Nokia-ns, Samsung-arians and Motorola-rollas can’t? The fact is, without the art of Blackberry Messenger, you simply are not fulfilling the requirements of the techno-generation. Having a PIN as well as a mobile number is far more exclusive than having, well, just a mobile number, and gives you entry into ‘the Blackberry Clique’. No clique
Curran Padake interview
an ex-soldier who wanted to shoot me after I tried to chat up his girlfriend. I got away with my life!
How long have you been teaching seminars and workshops? For nearly two years now. I also offer one-to-one training sessions.
What’s the typical age and gender of people you get in your seminars/ workshops? Anywhere from 21 to 50. A lot of clients come to me after experiencing violent confrontations and want to know how to deal with this if it ever happens again. Recently we had a major airline contact us to teach their cabin crew how to deal with violent confrontations whilst in the air. Some people just don’t have time to dedicate themselves to learning a particular martial art system and come to us to learn stuff that they can use straight away.
Following the previous question, do you believe this seminar is useful to everybody or a particular age/gender? I firmly believe everyone has the right to live their life without fear of being attacked or threatened. Everyone can benefit from our seminars regardless of age and gender. As a rule we do not teach those under the age of 18 as we feel what is taught could be misused by those who lack responsibility.
For the sake of awareness: In your experience, what was the most impressive street crime that you ever heard about? Hmm…will tell you over a drink sometime, got so many stories to tell you. Maybe I can be the next Andy Mcnabb and write a best seller and make millions!
Do you ever feel scared in on the street? Those little puppy dogs scare me, especially when they start barking! When I was kid, I once got chased down the road by a puppy dog whilst doing a paper round.
What do you believe to be the most important thing to do, when one falls victim to a street crime situation? My advice would be, don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world. I have been punched, kicked, threatened with a knife and almost got shot at in Bosnia and I am still here today!
Finally, we know that you are part of Regent’s College staff. Where can we find you, and what will you be doing. In case a violent crime occurs! I am a part-time super hero and have a super hero outfit underneath my desk. When there’s trouble I will dress up in my costume and fly across the campus to save a damsel in distress. Don’t you think my outfit’s sexier then Spiderman’s!
member can deny the envious looks that follow as you casually take out your phone to message your friends (actually you’re just playing brick breaker, but no one needs to know that). ‘Take my pin’, has become a kind of secret language which those who are not a part of the Clique just cannot understand. To these select socialites (although technically, we’re not really so select any more considering the majority of students at Regent’s College have one), the concept of ‘texting’ belongs to the
Ice Age. Society has become such that anybody who is anybody should have this phone. In order to appeal to their younger, hipper customers, those clever fellows at Blackberry have brought out new and ever more covetable models! So now, it’s not only having any old Blackberry that counts (I mean, let’s be honest, the Pearl is quickly becoming quite passé); it’s which Blackberry you have. The latest model, the Bold, is 3G, has been vastly updated in its
by Sarah Weicek
going to be unique when it resorts to the lazy text-message shorthand: ‘4 You’. He may as well have called his business ‘Essay World’ or ‘Dissertations ‘R’ Us’. For those who remain convinced that ‘Papers 4 You’ can deliver assignments more brilliant than they
design (they realised that the phone is no longer popular solely for its ‘business related’ functions, but needed to look more savvy too), and has a much better internet browser. It is also sells out within ten minutes every time Vodafone get a delivery from the warehouse. Are we really this hung up on a phone? It is understandable that people who travel a lot for their work, or are part of a Blackberry connected working environment would need one. But students? The truth is, we could most likely do just as well with a Nokia Sapphire (which some would argue is aesthetically nicer). It is the messenger which makes it seem so crucial a toy to all those who have formed ‘The Blackberry Clique’; and in that case it is almost a shame that our lives as the next real generation revolve around having to be quite that socially connected all the time. Every time we meet someone who we think is relatively interesting, it seems as though we speak to them until their phone rings, then hold our breath as they rummage around in their bag to find it, either breathing a sigh of relief on sighting a Blackberry or lowering our eyes in disappointment because it turns out, they are actually a Motorola-rolla! Whether or not you believe that having a Blackberry validates your worth as a human being, you cannot deny that a majority of people equate being high-society with being inside ‘The Blackberry Clique’. So for now, while the thought of switching to any other phone on upgrade sends a shiver down our spines and a wobble on our Christian Louboutins, it seems we’re going to continue being paid up members of the club.
Essay tout targets students
Regent’s College has many external impediments to getting work done. Oxford Street is just 10 minutes away, Marylebone High Street is just across the road and Regent’s Park is strewn with sleepy tourists taunting you from the plush grass. None of these temptations towards laziness, however, are as blatant as one character who keeps touting his wares on our sandstone doorstep. This hopeful gentleman wants to remove the need for you to work entirely, by writing all of your essays for you. He has been seen at least twice over the past month, handing out business cards advertising his ‘no plagiarism guaranteed’ services. Even if we cast aside that plagiarism is defined as using somebody else’s words as your own, the business card hardly fills you with confidence that the end product is
have been capable of up to now, but worried that their professor may grow suspicious by this sudden upsurge of intellect, they are presented with a ‘safer’ option. They can choose between the suspicionarousing ‘1st (A)’ quality paper, and the comfortably flawed Sainsbury’s Brand ‘2:1 (B)’ quality paper.
We can imagine the client feedback. “I’d been handing in chaff all year and was worried Professor Williams might question the integrity of my ‘Marketing Misshapen Vegetables’ essay due to its astronomical insights and impenetrable academic discourse. Luckily for me, ‘Papers 4 You’ was able to throw in a few misplaced apostrophes and deviant semi-colons (at only 99p per punctuation problem). This saved me from what most certainly otherwise would have been a raised brow and an awkward academic probing. I am now the proud owner of a 2:1 quality paper, and, in the time ‘Papers 4 You’ saved me, I was able to fly to Mustique early. If you see this man hovering near our doorstep again, you might like to subject him to an awkward academic probing of your own. If he is as talented as he believes himself to be, he should be able to stun you into submission with his first-class wit, saving his Sainsbury’s brand answers for your Psychology dissertation.