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December 2013

Traditions Under Review

Trinity’s Stalwart

Murder In The Cathedral

Taking stock of Trinity’s sometimes controversial traditions

A conversation with Bill Graham, Trinity College Chancellor and former Minister of Foreign Affairs

A sneak peek into the TCDS’ first show of 2014

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Content

APRIL 2013

NO ONE PUTS SANA ALI IN A CORNER

DW ecember 2013 ALLBALL

21ST CENTURY RUSH PUB Can this tradition align with modern progressive values?

The brutal odyssey of Trinity’s blood sport P.

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P.

Our exclusive interview on her public departure from Team Renew

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Features A Letter from the Editors p. 2 JET Setting Michael Sarty p.3

Murder In The Cathedral

What Kind of Non-Res Are You? Dryden Storm Bailey p.4

A look behind the scenes of the TCDS’ production of Murder in the Cathedral.

by:

Anya Broytman

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Life on the GO Emma Smith p.5 The Art of Fencing Iris Robin p.8 by:

Hot Tips for the Electoral Season Alexander Saxton p.9

Trinity’s Stalwart

Kaleem Hawa & Benjamin Crase

A conversation with Chancellor Bill Graham.

On the Bookshelves... Administrators Rebecca Zhu p.10

P. 13

Duranswers Lucas Durand p.11 The Buzz About Henderson Helen Picard p.12 In Pursuit of the 4.0 Veronica Stewart p.17

Traditions Under Review by:

Kate Motluk

Kate Motluk reviews Trinity’s storied and sometimes controversial traditions.

Gas - Strachan - omy Amanda Greer p.20

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Op-ed: Ubuntu Aditya Rau p.21 Postcards from Paris Sheena Singh p.22

Saints on the Nile

Horoscopes Amanda Greer & Rebecca Zhu p.26

Trinity teams up with King Tut for a lively Ancient Egypt themed Saints.

by:

Sexual Healing Sonia Liang p.27

Marcus Tutert

P. 24

Things to Do Around Town Simone Garcia p.28

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Salterrae • December 2013

APRIL 2013

Masthead

21ST CENTURY RUSH PUB

WALLBALL

Can this tradition align with modern progressive values?

Editor-in-Chief Hayden Rodenkirchen

Senior Copy Editor Emily Jennings

Senior Design Editor

NO ONE PUTS SANA ALI IN A CORNER

The brutal odyssey of Trinity’s blood sport P.

21

P.

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Senior Photographer Donald Belfon

Director of Public Relations Allison Spiegel

Guy Taylor

Treasurer Zane Schwartz

Salterrae Executive

Salterrae Contributors

Copy Editors Simone Garcia Sonia Liang Madeline Stewart

Jr. Copy Editor Maddy Torrie

Design Editors Andrew Bryan Helen Picard Josh Oliver

Jr. Design Editor Claire Shenstone-Harris

Our exclusive interview on her public departure from Team Renew

Columnists Lucas Durand Simone Garcia Amanda Greer Sonia Liang Michael Sarty Rebecca Zhu

Staff Writers

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Writers Dryden Rainbow Anya Broytman Benjamin Crase Kaleem Hawa Aditya Rau Iris Robin Helen Picard Alexander Saxton Sheena Singh Marcus Tutert

Photographers and Illustrators Dryden Storm Bailey Donald Belfon Benjamin Crase Rebecca Fallowfield Tamara Myhal Alyssa Stokvis-Hauer Guy Taylor

Kate Motluck Emma Smith Veronica Stewart

Letter From The Editors Men and Women of College and First Years, Rejoice. The issue is come. We three kings have travelled afar to create this issue. From the four corners of Trinity College we found contributors, staff writers, and editors, whose hard work has produced this shining manuscript to guide you through the darkness of winter. Its content crosses genres, from classic columns like Duranswers, to revelations of hidden study locations, and conversations with figures who make the college tick. We hope that the irreverence, insights, and strong opinions within its pages will bring laughter, contemplation, and strong opinions in turn. Finally, whether you dive into our December issue as a respite from the madness of exams or as a respite from the madness of your family’s holiday gatherings, we hope you will find solace within it. If reading leaves you with scathing criticisms or undue praise in mind, letters to the editors may be sent directly to salterrae@trinlife.com. Until we next meet in February, enjoy the holiday season. Now, on dash away! Dash away! Dash away all! - H.R., E.J., G.T.

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Michael Sarty • JET Setting As an English teacher, standing in front of a sea of expectant Japanese teenagers and having the unshakeable and terrifying realization that you have no idea what you are going to say is deeply unsettling. On the one hand, English is the language of Shakespeare, Woolf, Poe, and Fitzgerald. On the other hand, it is the same language that you were bastardizing not four months ago, when you frantically clawed at the keyboard in a hungover stupor, desperately bidding to meet the deadline of your final term paper. This is the situation I found myself in, sweltering in the heat of late August 2013. I stood in front of forty fifteen-year-olds at Karatsu Higashi Junior High School. The eponymous Karatsu is a small town in north-western Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan’s four major islands. Describing Karatsu as rural is an exaggeration. One of the first ten Japanese words I learned was inaka, meaning rural. People from outside Saga – Karatsu’s prefecture – use it with an affectionate shake of the head and condescending chuckle. Saga is the New Brunswick of Japan. How did I make my way halfway around the world only to find myself in the Japanese New Brunswick? The journey started in September of my fourth year. I distinctly

encounter. I am three months into my studies and the most basic Japanese syntax is still baffling. This is particularly difficult when every interaction reminds you of your incompetence. It is unbearably frustrating when every sentence you stutter is met with a confused face, or, even worse, a grimace. Cultural differences have been another challenge. They are, of course, only exacerbated by the language barrier. Try as I might, I remain an outsider to my colleagues, a transient visitor who can never truly be a part of the school. To my neighbours I am more of an oddity than anything else. I am the gangly gaijin who speaks like a toddler and still cannot figure out when to put the recycling outside. Bonding with your fellow JETs alleviates the stress, but you still remain an outsider. It should be noted that the good moments make up tenfold for occasional sense of alienation. Three months into my experience, and I recall these moments as random snapshots: laughing with a Japanese teacher over a beer and roasted squid dinner; high-fiving a student who is beyond delight that she finally can pronounce “pray” and “play” as two separate words; biking as the sun sets past fishmongers hawking their

JET Setting

A reluctant graduate’s journey to Japan

By: Michael Sarty

To my neighbours I am more of an oddity than anything else

remember one night, at two in the morning, lying in bed, and thinking, “Am I about to start the rest of my life?”. For a brief, hellish moment, I saw my future laid out in front of me, from law school, to mortgage, to kids, to retirement. I couldn’t handle it, so I spent the rest of the night hunched over the computer searching for ways to delay the reality of adulthood.The most

Illustration: Ben Crase

convenient means I found was the JET Program. The JET program is funded by the Japanese government. It places over 4,000 English teachers from around the world in locations throughout Japan, from the sunny beaches of Okinawa to the snowy crags of Hokkaido. The program offers an opportunity for cross-cultural interaction far off the beaten track. My town is a bustling metropolis at a little over 80,000 people. One of my friends lives and teaches on an island of 300. Moreover, the program places its teachers in an amazing diversity of teaching environments. I teach at an academic middle school, an agricultural high school, and an all-ages special needs school. Such a wide range in ages and abilities lends a wonderfully dynamic quality to each week of work. The application process for JET was comparable to my Graduate School applications. It required jumping through several administrative hoops, a few essays, and an hour-long interview. It was only after I arrived in Japan, though, that the real difficulties began. I found the most trouble with the language barrier. Let me be clear: Japanese is perhaps the most alien and bizarre language a native English speaker can

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Am I about to start the rest of my life? wares; conducting my first ever fully-Japanese conversation. My philosophy in light of this experience can be summed up as “life begins now”. I am never again going to have the chance to throw myself headfirst into a brand new culture with this much freedom. I am glad that I took a chance on teaching, and a chance on Japan. I hope you do too.


Salterrae • December 2013

By: Dryden Rainbow

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Emma Smith • Life on the GO

Life on the GO

The trials and tribulations of off-residence living By: Emma Smith

As I sit here, rocketing along on the 8:00am eastbound GO train, I catch my first glimpse of the Toronto skyline. This is all part of my morning ritual: I am dropped off at the Bronte GO station at 7:50, board the train at 8:00, and by 8:30 the view of the CN Tower appears through the dull, travel-worn window. Though I was once a university resi dent, I am now a commuter. The University of Toronto accommodates approximately ten percent of the student population in residence. Some assume that commuters are less engaged in campus life; they come in, go to classes, and then retreat unseen to their respective suburbs. Although commuting makes my life very different than living in residence, it has certain perks. For example, as much as I love Kraft Dinner and ramen noodles, nothing beats home cooking. The family abode provides me with this, as well as free access to laundry, toiletries, and occasionally, maid service courtesy of mom. I no longer gaze longingly at photographs of my dog. As a non-resident student, she curls up at the end of my bed every night. Despite my non-residence, I have man aged to stay involved at Trinity College. There is always a friend with a futon or a floor to crash on

Illustration: Guy Taylor after pub nights, the Lit, or other late-night Trinity activities. NRAC is a great space to stay involved in Trinity life and have fun, whether you are a commuter, a nonres downtown-dweller, or a resident. Another perk of commuter life is seeing the sights - and I don’t just mean the funny faces people pull when asleep on the GO train. When I became a commuter, I bought a Metropass. It is a liberating piece of plastic. I have seen more of Toronto’s vibrant culture this year than ever before. My Metropass is an excuse to go a few subway stops beyond the Trinity bubble and explore the city. Commuting is also conducive to my academic efforts. I have ample time to study while in transit. I also find myself in a more consistent routine because I am less distracted by late-night outings with friends. Commuting also helps me get into shape. Lugging around a heavy backpack all day has awakened a previously unknown strength within me. Combine the heavy lifting with the cardio from running to class after transit has been I think I have an effective training delayed, and regimen.

As much as I love Kraft Dinner and ramen noodles, nothing beats home cooking. 5

Of course, I should not neglect to mention how nice it is to live with my family. I get to help my sister with her homework; this means I finally have an excuse to brush up on my long division, a perfectly necessary and worthwhile use of time. It is lovely to receive 108 text messages a day from my parents “just checking in” or “wanting to know if I will be home for dinner” because it reminds me that they care.

I spend the time musing about what kind of apocalyptic disaster happening on the surface could be causing the TTC delay.

I am also glad that my friends do not stop having fun in my absence. As I sit at home sipping tea with my parents, I take comfort in the fact that my friends are out on the town having great fun. I love receiving their drunken snapchats in the early hours of the morning, hearing about their newest adventures, and laughing cluelessly at their latest inside jokes. Commuting also allows me to make new friends because rush hour can provide a fantastic, albeit stuffy, bonding experience. Delays on the subway are particularly exciting because they get my creative juices flowing. I spend the time musing about what kind of apocalyptic disaster happening on the surface could be causing the TTC delay. As you can see, commuting has perks, twisted though they may be. Despite my appreciation for the commuter life, I have a confession: I lasted two months before deciding that commuting is too good for me. I recently ordered a bed from IKEA and am on my way to a friend’s downtown Toronto apartment. Though I will remain a non-resident of the university, I plan to rough it out there for the rest of the year.


Salterrae • December 2013

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hedding Light on ‘Murder in the Cathedral’

An interview with Thomas Slabon By: Anya Broytman Photography: Donald Belfon

The show will be deeply immersive, unlike the typical theatre experience

The title Murder in the Cathedral suggests a detective story, but it is in fact a historical drama by T. S. Eliot. Director Thomas Slabon tells us more about it. You can think of Murder in the Cathedral as Shakespeare meets Ibsen. It is beautiful. The story deals with the martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket in the 12th century. He died at the hands of four knights in 1170 because he failed to agree with the King. The play describes his temptations to give in to earthly power or be martyred for the wrong reason – his own glory.

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The play will be set in the Trinity Chapel. Has this space been used for theatre before? Yes. The Chapel is usually the rain out location for Shakespeare in the Quad. Also, this is the third time that the TCDS will be putting on Murder in the Cathedral. It was first performed shortly after the Chapel’s construction, in the mid-1950s. Then it was staged again in 1990. There is actually a poster in the JCR from that production. Twenty-four years will have elapsed when the play returns to this space this winter. We are following in an illustrious tradition. (Smiles).


Anya Broytman • Shedding Light on ‘Murder in the Cathedral’ How do you think the atmosphere of the Chapel will play to the advantage of the performance? We are taking advantage of the space in every way possible, for example by lighting the stained glass windows and making use of the organ. The choir will also be singing in the show. We are using the Chapel’s altars, so in fact, the set is already made for us. Some of the acting will take place in the aisle between the pews where the audience will be sitting. The Chapel also has phenomenal acoustics. It is an entirely different experience from the George Ignatieff Theatre, where Trinity students typically perform. What do you think about the idea of taking a religiously charged space and using it for theatre? When I first read Eliot’s play, I intuitively felt it was following the pattern of Christian liturgy. Then I did some secondary reading on Eliot’s letters and literary criticism – and discovered that he describes theatre as a lesser form of liturgy. In fact, in the play, readings from the Old Testament and the Gospels become the temptations that Becket faces. Then he gives a homily as an Archbishop, much like a priest would give a homily. Then there is the Eucharist sacrifice, except that instead of having a priest relive the sacrifice of Jesus, we see Becket give up his life for what he believes in. It is an ideal play to perform in the Chapel because the symbolism of the space meets the fundamental meaning of the text. Will the actors be wearing historical costumes? Most of them will. I am in touch with a number of people in the Chapel who are going to help us find time-appropriate vestments for the priests and the archbishop. The setting is historical. There are also some supernatural elements that we are building in: I do not want to give it all away of course. (Smiles). There are scenes where Becket is tempted, and I interpret the tempters as very otherworldly figures. We will be playing up this aspect, and it will be all the more shocking because everything else will be historical.

We are taking advantage of the space in every way possible: lighting the stained glass windows and making use of the organ.

Having the audience sit on the pews must be unusual! Yes, exactly. (Smiles). It is really exciting because it creates a whole new dynamic. Instead of there being an established fourth wall, we will have actors in the aisles, the choir singing, and the organ playing in the choir loft. And then in the scenes where Becket is giving a homily to the congregation, he will be speaking to the audience. The knights also break the fourth wall and address the audience directly. In this

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way, the show will be deeply immersive, unlike the typical theatre experience; you will not be sitting in the comfort of a theatre chair. It will feel very present. Can you say a few words about the lead actors? The show is unquestionably about Becket. He will be played by Arun Radhakrishnan who has appeared many times in TCDS shows, most recently in Richard III. I think that he is able to bring out the regal side of Becket’s character, but also show moments of humility and weakness throughout the play. Arun is excited for the challenge. In addition to Becket, we have the priests, the tempters, the knights, and the chorus. They are all integral to the plot. It is such a cohesive, poetic piece. Our four knight-tempters are Anthony Botelho, Travis De Wolf, Stephen Lubin, and Amanda Joy Lim. They are all phenomenal actors and actresses. And let’s not forget that we have the wonderful Trin choir involved. We even have an organist of our own, Alastair Williams, a first-year. He usually plays at St. Thomas Aquinas, an Anglican church right up the street from here, but he is also involved with the Trinity Chapel. How did you get into theatre yourself ? (Laughs) I did a lot of writing and a bit of acting and directing in high school. I loved theatre and it always interested me. At Trinity, I found I had less time to do it. For the past couple of years it has been something in the background. I went to see the TCDS shows but did not participate in the productions. At the end of last year I realized that there was only so much time left for me at Trinity – how often do you get a chance to take your artistic vision and make it come alive? Naturally, I took advantage of this opportunity.


Salterrae • December 2013

The Art of Fencing A basic introduction to a complex sport By: Iris Robin Illustration: Alyssa Stokvis-Hauer Fencing intrigues many, yet remains a mystery for most. It requires skill, swiftness, and intellectual strategising. Some are attracted to its illustrious and chivalrous history; others come to learn a mentally and physically demanding sport. Most wonder, “what is the subtle art of fencing?” Swordfighting has been practiced for millennia. At its inception, the sword was used purely as an offensive weapon. When the custom of sporting armour for personal protection declined in the late 1500s, noblemen looked to the ordinary soldier. As soldiers lacked the funds necessary to buy expensive breastplates and helmets, they were forced to become masters of the art of defensive swordplay. The sword rose as a defensive weapon: the term ‘fencing’ is in fact derived from the word ‘defence.’ As an overweight fourteen year-old who had never set foot in a sports complex, let alone played a complex sport, I was unaware that there are three types of swords used in competitive fencing: the foil, the épée, and the sabre. When I am asked “what is the difference between the swords?”, I reply that it is the same as the difference between a football and a basketball; both require balls, but the gameplay is different.

There are endless possibilities for developing strategy and technique I first learned to fence with the foil. Hailed as the ideal weapon of instruction because of its lightness, the beginner fencer learns footwork, attack, defence, and counter-attack techniques that are useful in fencing with any sword. Although the épée and foil are similar, the distinguishing features of a match using a foil is the presence of a limited target area and the ‘Right of Way’ principle. The ‘Right of Way’ principle comes into effect if both fencers hit each other at the same time. According to this principle, the competitor who initiates the attack receives the point.

Swordfighting has been practiced for millennia.

With an épée, the entire body, including the feet, hands, and head, is a valid target area. There is also no ‘Right of Way;’ if both duellists strike each other simultaneously, they each score a point. Both the foil and the épée are thrusting weapons; a hit is only acceptable if the tip of the blade makes contact with your opponent. The sabre can also be used as a slashing weapon; hits made with both the tip and the blade are permitted. This divergence, along with the waist-up target area and the invocation of the ‘Right of Way’ principle, gives the sabre a remarkably different style of fencing compared to a bout with a foil or épée. All this information might seem confusing at first. Think of it this way: there are endless possibilities for developing strategy and technique, and that fantastic variety makes fencing so enjoyable. These are only the very basic differences between the swords. Each sword has its own character and different set of skills required to wield it. If an overweight fourteen year-old with no sporting inclination can learn to fence, so can you. Some say that Trinity College is characterized by a fondness for tradition. Others say that Trinity just likes to cling to antique mannerisms, and, in the fashion of Jay Gatsby, romanticize the

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past. I think that there is something terribly romantic about two people fighting to the death with pointy sticks. Of course, the romanticism is not in the intention to murder, nor is it in the struggle not to be murdered. It is in the method of combat. Murder is always a mistake. As Oscar Wilde put it, “One should never do anything that one cannot talk about after dinner”. Nevertheless, fencing has made an art of something that was once murderous. It ought to appeal to us at Trinity. As far as armed combat goes, fencing is one way to uphold tradition. Iris Robin is Co-President of the lege Swordmanship Society.

Trinity

Col-


Alexander Saxton • Hot Tips for the Electoral Season

Hot Tips for the Electoral Season at Trinity A step by step guide to becoming Emperor By: Alexander Saxton Women and Men of College and First Years, you may not have been aware of it, but the Trinity College election cycle has begun. Many of Trinity’s blandest and wealthiest Second and Third Years already resolved to run for one of next year’s headships. It is up to you, Trinity’s most flavourful, vile, and cackling Second and Third Years to stop them by taking over Trinity College. “But how?” I hear you say. “College elections are a cesspool, and my emotional gills are too flabby to keep grit from seeping into my lungs as I swim.” In this metaphor, you have described yourself as some sort of a fish with lungs. This is good: lungfish are survivors. You must become like a lungfish if you wish to make it. At night, whisper the words “lungfish equals survival” to yourself until they lose all meaning. Then, continue to whisper them to yourself until they take on a new meaning, a meaning similar to “harm those you love in order to get ahead.”

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It is okay to have feelings in the night

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Exercise: do not worry too much about exercise. You will get plenty of exercise dancing in moon circles with the little orange men and choking people with your withered, laughing hands.

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Theme music. Memorize the entirety of The Dixie Chicks’ “Not Ready To Make Nice” and shout-sing it at your rivals while maintaining eye-contact with them in Strachan. This will make them think that maybe you need to win this election more than they do. Idiots! The only thing you need anymore is broth. At night, spend long hours thinking about how Adrian Pasdar broke up with Natalie Maines because he thought that Heroes would turn him into a bigshot. Cry. Stamp your feet and wail and fling yourself against the wall. It is okay to have feelings in the night.

This is the first lesson. “How am I to strengthen my gills?” I hear you howl. This is your first mistake. Those who will successfully make it through the cess are those who are too busy doing gill kegels to howl at me for advice. Here are some metaphorical kegel exercises for you to do.

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Literal kegel exercises. It is impossible to put a price on a tight abdominal cavity.

Books. Read Hayek, and read Rand, and then mash their books together to make it seem as though the books are sharing an intimate moment. This will not help you win any elections, but it will at least help you get your rocks off, do you feel me?

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Malcolm Gladwell. Of him, I am not so fond. I think that his works should not be collected into thinkbooks, but rather into the back pages of Fart and Butt Magazine, which is a fake magazine that I made by applying my pencil crayons to an issue of Car and Driver as a way of making a point. Gladwell is no lungfish. If you buried him in the desert, I don’t think he would survive for even one single month.

Diet! Do not have one. For the months leading up to elections, live off of nothing but a thin broth made of fish, lemon juice, locusts, wild honey, and grain alcohol. Get all thin and get all messed up in your brain region. If you appear weak, people will trust you and help you, not realizing that you still have enough strength in your shriveled, crazy hands to choke them once they have outlived their usefulness. You will start seeing tiny orange men on tiny orange horses. They will lead you into the woods and prick you with little tridents. You will try to stop drinking the broth. “Do not stop drinking the broth,” they will tell you. You must listen to them. Trust them. They have your best interests at heart. Maybe.

You will start to see tiny orange men on tiny 7 orange horses

Application. By now the tiny orange men will have taught you many things. They will have taught you how it feels to be pricked by tridents in the moonlight. They will have taught you to hunt the tiny grey men with sparrow heads that live in the woods. Put these lessons to use. Shave your body and paint it orange. You are ready to be elected. You are ready to lead.

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Salterrae • December 2013

On the Bookshelves: Administrators of College

Nelson DeMelo, the Registrar, recently read…

Big Books read by the Big Guys

By: Rebecca Zhu

The Salterrae is continuing its investigation into the bookshelves of people around college - because we know you are all nerdy enough to care. Last time, when we asked the student heads, we found out that Patrick likes beer, Maha likes poetry, and Kate likes hermaphrodites. This time, the Salterrae will bring you to deeper, darker, and murkier bookshelves… those of your administration. Geoffrey Seaborn, the Bursar, is reading…

Lives of the Family: Stories of Fate and Circumstance by Denise Chong Lives of the Family is a newly released book by Denise Chong, award-winning author and an old friend of Geoff ’s. Her Globe and Mail bestseller, The Concubine’s Children, is a non-fiction narrative that explores the life of Chinese immigrants in Canada. In her latest collection, Chong shares and preserves the stories of early ChineseCanadian citizens, who faced some of Canada’s most prejudiced immigration policies, such as the Chinese Exclusion Act and the discriminatory Head Tax. Telling tales of eventual success in the face of adversity, Chong’s new book serves as a reminder of a darker time in Canadian history, and of the remarkable people who overcame it.

Chong’s new book serves as a reminder of a darker time in Canadian history

The time is 1939, the place is New York City. Two cousins, a Czech artist and a Brooklyn writer, meet. The pair jump into the booming comic book industry by creating a superhero inspired by Harry Houdini, Captain America, and Batman. Amidst the challenges of business and art, Chabon also throws in issues of romance, persecution, and sexuality. This Pulitzer Prizewinning adventure story has something in it to please everyone. Although Entertainment Weekly called it “truly amazing”, Dean Steels made a more thorough and thoughtful comment when he said that the novel touched on “many detailed and relatable facets of the human condition”. Adam Hogan, the Assistant Dean of Students, is reading…

Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell What makes successful people so successful? In Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell, one successful Trinity College alumni, suggests that success may be based as much on environmental factors as on individual traits. Using a variety of engaging anecdotes, Gladwell explores a number of accomplishments and how they came to be. A few of his claims, including the fact that the Beatles and Bill Gates became highly talented because they adhered to the “10,000 Hour Rule” of practice, appear somewhat obvious. Gladwell also takes readers into the realm of the bizarre, however, arguing that plane crash frequencies are affected by cultural differences and that a disproportionate number of successful hockey players are uncoincidentally born in January. Whether you find his arguments convincing or oversimplified, it is undeniable that Gladwell is a master storyteller who keeps his readers hooked to the end. Jonathan Steels, the Dean of Students, shared a favourite...

The Amazing Adventure of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon

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The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz Oscar Wao is a nerdy, shy, overweight, and incredibly endearing teenager growing up in the suburbs of New Jersey. Unlike the rest of the men in his Dominican-American family, Oscar can never seem to woo the girl of his dreams, or even any girl at all. Instead, he turns to comic books and science fiction. Oscar’s life takes a turn for the better when he visits his family in the Dominican Republic. While exploring the lives of his relatives under the despotic Trujillo regime and trying to ward off a destructive fuku, or Dominican curse, it seems that Oscar may finally find love. Another Pulitzer Prize winning-book, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is a fascinating exploration of diaspora, magical realism, and modern America. It is quickly integrating itself into the modern canon, and can be succinctly summed up by the novel’s final words: “the beauty, the beauty”.

While exploring the lives of his relatives... and trying to ward off a Dominican curse, it seems that Oscar may finally find love


D U R A N S W E R S

Lucas Durand • Duranswers Welcome back, you. Yes, you! Do you see anyone else here? Of course not! You are alone. And you will always be alone. Trust me. I know these things. I see you there with your innocent smile and your still bright eyes. But that won’t last long. No. No it won’t. Our cruel mistress, this universe, will not allow it; I will not allow it. For to allow it would be to allow the propagation of untruths, nasty little things that sully the waters of our society and pollute the very metaphorical air that we very literally breath. Yes, I am hungover. So, what?! Do you think you’re better than me because you got out of bed today and ate more than the leftover Burger King meal that you so thoughtfully toted home last night? Because you’re not. You’re not better than me. I am Lucat the wise. Who are you? Can you synthesize worldshaking, groundbreaking, babymaking solutions to anonymous problems out of the very aether surrounding us? Oh, you can’t? That’s what I thought.

By: Lucas Durand Illustrations: Guy Taylor

Lucas, great bringer of light and knowledge,

It is dark. So dark. I cannot see, nor have I been able to see for as long as I can remember. It is cold. So cold. I cannot feel, nor have I been able to feel for as long as I can remember. It is wet. So wet. I cannot not slip, nor have I been able to not slip for as long as I can remember. I don’t know if aid of any kind would have the efficacy to find me in this terrible place. I don’t know if I even want help anymore. I just don’t know.

distribution locations. That being said, you had to get out of that pit anyways to send this letter, and will have to again in order to get your package so... you are not being very true to your character, something that I can’t stand for. Maybe you should just suffer in silence. You owe it to yourself. It’s what the acting community calls the process and it’s kind of a big deal. Sincerely, Grand Maestro of the Arcane Arts, Lucas

Oi, Lucas,

I’ve been hitting the gym pretty hard of late, crunches, erging, showering, the lot, and I’ve noticed a fantastic change, not only in my physique, which is sextastic, but also in my state of mind, which is bangerific. But, I want to take things to the next level, I want an extreme workout. What do you think? What will satisfy my sweat lust? Regards, Hunked up beefcake

Dear Hunked up beefcake,

Prepare yourself for these words. Monday night. After 5pm. 1/2 price wings at Puck n’ Wings with the purchase of a large drink. You. Also, kettlebells.

Without hope,

Surrender

Cheers,

Dear Surrender, Lucas of the Clan McKat

Here, have a flashlight. Here, have a blanket. Here, have a towel, in case that blanket got all wet. And hey, why not take a block heater too? Also, I went ahead and assumed that you have recreated the conditions of Buffalo Bill’s basement from the 1991 horror classic Silence of the Lambs, so I threw in a pair of nightvision goggles for the big finish. I hope that floats your boat. I’ll just leave one of these packages at each of the designated Salterrae

For the eyes of the anointed, Lucat ze Kitteh,

Have you noticed ... well, of course you’ve noticed ... I mean ... if I’ve noticed, you must have noticed and ... I ... I have noticed. Things. Weather. The birds. Patterns. In the Leaves. In the Trees. Signs. Gourds. I have noticed. A chill. There is a chill in the air that reaches to my innermost warm, to my soul fire. There is a chill in the air. My eyes are now opened. I have noticed.

Together, we notice,

Seer of the unseen

Hey Seer of the unseen,

It is winter now. It is now winter. It’s winter. Yep. Lucas.

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Kind Regards,


Salterrae • December 2013

The Buzz About Henderson Trinity College WASPS Living With Bees By: Helen Picard

Apart from prestigious intellect, what do Sherlock Holmes and Trinity College have in common? Beekeeping. In Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “His Last Bow,” Sherlock retires to a small farm in Sussex to tend to his apiaries. Sherlock even wrote a book called the Practical Handbook of Bee Culture With Some Observations Upon the Segregation of the Queen, the completion of which he regarded as “… the magnum opus of my latter years.” Any pastime meriting the enthusiasm of one of history’s greatest fictional minds must be regarded as a noble one; and so it is regarded at Trinity College. We hold beekeeping in such high regard that we reserve one of the highest points of the college for it – Henderson Tower - atop which rests one of the University of Toronto’s three rooftop apiaries. Time Magazine recognized beekeeping this August by featuring a single Western honeybee, the Apis mellifera, on an issue’s cover, alongside the caption “A World Without Bees.” The articles within elaborated human dependency on pollinating insects, as well as the troubling new prevalence of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), a mysterious affliction which causes the instantaneous death of bee colonies. CCD is often attributed to general causes including climate change and pesticides. Our inability to diagnose the exact cause of this new problem, which has significant implications for human beings, is one example of how insufficient human knowledge of pollinating insects is. Alissa Saieva, the President of the U of T Beekeeping Education Enthusiast Society (B.E.E.S.), is an advocate of educating students about how they are affected by pollinating insects, for

exactly this reason. When it comes to CCD, Saieva feels that honeybees are our “canaries in the coal mine.” Our current environmental approaches are obviously not conducive to the health of bees; given our dependence on insects like them, it follows that our environmental habits need changing. The Trinity College, Faculty Club, and Earth Sciences rooftop apiaries are a step towards understanding how this can be done.

Both the drug deals and foliage on Philosopher’s walk give Trinity’s honey a darker character The U of T rooftop apiaries were created by local beekeeper Brian Hamlin in 2009. The current Trinity apiary is the first at U of T to be run entirely by a student organization, namely, B.E.E.S. Saieva says that “Trinity is often regarded as our ‘home base’.” For this she cites not only Trinity College’s status as the site of B.E.E.S.’ inaugural apiary, but also the ongoing support of Trinity College administration, notably Bursar Geoff Seaborn, whose encouragement has allowed the Henderson Tower hive to become the experimental forefront of the U of T apiaries. For example, it is the first U of T apiary to utilize a ‘queen excluder,’ a sheet inserted into the hive in order to constrain the movements of the queen bee, and thereby control the growth rate of the colony. So if you’re a rooftop parkour master with apiphobia, have no fear; the bee population is controlled, and they are docile unless irritated.

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Another unique quality of the Henderson Hive is the color of the honey, which is darker than honey harvested from U of T’s other apiaries. The flavour and shade of honey is dictated by the plant nectar from which it is made. It turns out that both the drug deals and foliage on Philosopher’s walk give Trinity’s honey a darker character. Toronto itself is something of an apiary trailblazer – the first hotel in the world to feature a rooftop apiary is the Fairmont Royal York, located near Union station. Since its 2008 installation, the trend has flourished. However, this rooftop trend is also blooming controversy – many beekeepers opine that urban apiaries are unhealthy for bees compared to their rural counterparts, due to higher concentrations of pesticide in urban areas. Beekeeper Jim Darlington has been beekeeping in Northern Ontario for over thirty years, following family tradition. “It’s better here,” he says, referring to the Parry Sound, Ontario, countryside, the location of his beekeeping business J.B.’s Bees. President Saieva herself is an advocate for urban apiaries, as she sees an “immense unexploited potential for bees in cities.” Of course for this debate to be resolved, further research into urban apiaries is required. As the home base of University of Toronto B.E.E.S., Trinity’s Henderson Hive may be the key to such research. All this to say that next time you find yourself under Henderson Tower, put out whatever you are smoking, look up, and thank your buzzing neighbours for the part their species plays in creating the Sodexo feasts you could not live without.


Kaleem Hawa & Benjamin Crase • Trinity’s Stalwart

Trinity’s Stalwart A Conversation with Chancellor Bill Graham

By: Kaleem Hawa & Benjamin Crase Sporting a charcoal blazer, sky blue microdot tie and brown leather penny loafers, the Honourable Bill Graham (61’) sits comfortably in the study of his spacious Bloor Street office. The former Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs and current Trinity College Chancellor observes the room with a calm focus. His wife and co-founder of the Trinity College Book Sale, Cathy Graham (63’), stands at the door and remarks on the office’s new oriental rug, picked up during the couple’s last trip to Istanbul: “We really should throw out the old one,” she says. “I wasn’t really a big fan of it.” As she begins to leave, an ephemeral grin flits across Chancellor Graham’s face before he replies, “That one came from my mother, you know.” The whole conversation takes less than a moment, but leaves the Chancellor reminiscing. He met his wife while in High School. An alumnus

of Upper Canada College, Graham was quick to follow the well-worn path to Trinity. She, on the other hand, chose McGill, where she studied for one year before transferring to Trinity. “We got married in my second year of law school. Cathy was living at home but in those days, the culture was quite segregated. The women lived in St. Hilda’s and the men lived at Trinity.” Graham furrows his brow in remembrance and a slight chuckle escape him. “I remember one afternoon, a bunch of the men were invited over for tea with the ladies of St. Hilda’s. I distinctly remember walking into the room and being struck by this woman who was putting 6 lumps of sugar in her tea. I remember finding it particularly funny that someone would do something like that but, for some reason or other, we would become lifelong friends.”

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That woman was Adrienne Clarkson – Canada’s 26th Governor General.

••• Chancellor Graham recently made a generous $5 million contribution to Trinity College and the Munk School of Global Affairs, to fund the Bill Graham Centre for the Study of Contemporary International History. To him, the donation was a natural fit. “It came from the fact that I love Trinity. I think that Trinity’s International Relations program is really exemplary and I’ve had a chance to teach in it occasionally myself.” Graham sees the centre as one way to facilitate greater student engagement in issues of geopolitical significance. “Talking to [Munk School Director] Janice Stein, I sensed a concern that students were getting a lot of theoretical information but not necessarily interacting with people who had practical involvement in the shaping of history and public policy.”


Salterrae • December 2013

Remarking on the development of the centre, Graham explains, “I believe [at the time the centre was established], I was teaching a course in international contemporary events with John English and Jack Cunningham. I was bringing in a lot of the people that had worked with me in the past like [former Canadian Leader of the Opposition] Michael Ignatieff and [former Ontario Premier] Bob Rae. You also know more recently that we’ve held a talk with [former Canadian Prime Minister] Paul Martin and [former Minister of Foreign Affairs] Lloyd Axworthy.” A smile escapes his lips. “You could call them practitioners of the dark arts if you like – admittedly political beings – but also top policymakers who were knowledgeable about these areas. It was clear that the students really liked the novelty of the experience.” Much of this commitment to students and the study of international relations stems from Chancellor Graham’s time as a Trinity student and his firm belief in the virtues

of connecting scholastic knowledge to the personal lives of its pupils. “Well I really had a wonderful undergraduate experience at Trinity. I remember my history professors were superb and quite accessible to the point where occasionally we’d get one of them to come over and have dinner with us – it always made for an intimate learning experience. That was the sort of thing I feel students appreciate most. That, and the chance to engage with things outside the classroom.” On that note, Chancellor Graham pivots to the main extracurricular activities that were foundational to his time at the University. “I was always very interested in competitive debating at the University and I feel like it stuck with me through much of my life.” On the evening of November 14, 1985, a riot broke out at the Hart House Debate Committee event, “This House believes that the West should not divest its holding in the

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Republic of South Africa”. The conflict, which had arisen in response to the debate’s invitation of the, “very aggressive South African Ambassador to Canada Glenn Babb,” left Hart House Warden Richard Alway injured and the many spectators fleeing through windows to escape unscathed. At the time, Graham had no way of knowing how closely he would come to embroilment in the Babb controversy. “This was a man who had gone across the country criticizing Canada for our own ‘apartheid’ on the Aboriginal reserves. And while there were some legitimate criticisms to be addressed regarding our treatment of that community, [Babb] was very aggressive on the counter-attack and wasn’t taking this lying down.” “Now, the University had a policy that when someone is denied the ability to speak on the campus, he or she will be invited back for another occasion. So the President of the University phoned me – I was teaching


Kaleem Hawa & Benjamin Crase • Trinity’s Stalwart international law at the time – and asked if I would be willing to engage in a debate with the Ambassador. This would give [Babb] a forum to speak but still allowed for the counterarguments to be made in a debate setting.”

our good friend Hal Davies, who was in the year above me, had been the one to get the group of us involved.”

“My son called it Babb and Blab.” Graham grins as he continues. “I, like a fool, agreed to this.”

“He had also been Scribe of Episkopon and persuaded me to become Scribe of Episkopon too.”

“So on the day of the debate, as we were going in, I noticed [Babb] had two Mounties – but there was no one protecting me; he also said that they had told him to wear a bulletproof vest!”

“I wasn’t there when it was felt that Episkopon should no longer be a part of college life.”

And so, with much apprehension, we had the debate at the Law School and literally at the end, the crowd who were trying to prevent the debate from taking place broke through the mounted police cordon and began banging on the doors of the moot court just as we were finishing. I immediately thought that we would be having another riot, but rather than worry for my own safety, I realized I was worried that he’d insist on coming back again!” “No, no,” I said. “We’re gonna finish this.”

••• Returning to his time as an Undergraduate, Graham also recalls being involved in other, less traditional, debate platforms. The most significant for him was his time spent at the Trinity College Literary Institute (The Lit). “The Lit was an incredible experience – it was a big part of what we did. I remember I once served as the Prime Minister for almost a whole year. It lasted until the last month, when one of my best friends, who was then the Leader of the Opposition, managed to get a cabal together to throw me out. In a way, it was great training for politics.” Having cut his teeth early, Graham pursued College-level politics not long thereafter. “I was elected Head of Arts in my fourth year. In those days the Head of College was appointed and had to be from Divinity but it was an incredible opportunity to be elected by my peers.” Nevertheless, Graham is clear about his most significant extra-scholastic commitment. “I was in the Navy as a cadet. I feel like Trinity College is a place where you can build lifelong friendships and for me, the navy had been an extension of that. There were quite a few Trinity guys who were also very active in the navy and we stuck together. I remember

With a glimmer in his eye, Graham goes on.

•••

Graham is, of course, referencing the 1992 decision by the Trinity College Board of Trustees to dissociate the society from Trinity College.

“No, no,” I said. “We’re gonna finish this.” “Back in those days, Episkopon was managed in a way that created a lot of very interesting dynamics amongst the student body but which wasn’t hurtful. I think at some point it became or was not managed in a way that was appropriate and it was [then] that the college authorities made their decision to no longer include it as a part of college life.” Graham pauses before continuing, “I regret that.” “I regret that because I think when properly done, it was a part of our life [on campus]. There were those Episkopon books, which are now going to be given to the Archives and which are very valuable. I mean there’s [prominent Canadian poet] Archibald Lampman in there and [Canadian filmmaker] Atom Egoyan. Even Hal Davies, who was the Scribe before me, took a great deal of time creating fabulous illustrations in that book – illuminated manuscripts.” “But every tradition has its time, [Episkopon] may have just been something no longer appropriate with the times. I do not know that. I understand there is still an Episkopon. If the men and women of College want to do it and do it off campus, then my view is that it’s got nothing to do with the university and it’s private life.” Remarking on his own experiences with the society, Graham replies. “The thing that

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I would say about the Episkopon in my day, was that the role of the Scribe was to get the input from the men of college and filter them. If there was anything particularly egregious, you threw it out. It wasn’t there to disparage people, it was there for everyone to have a good time, and we generally did. There was a lot of poking fun of people – including myself.” Following much prodding as to the nature of Graham’s undergraduate antics, he laughs. “[...]you know, the usual riotous behavior like not being polite to the Dean of Men. We used to have a lot of fun with him in [Strachan] Hall. Do you still have spooning out? People used to bang their spoons and demand that people get taken out of Strachan. Occasionally they would sell off the old Trinity silverware – we still have some of that up at the country house – and the spoons would all be totally flat on the bottom from being banged.”

••• With that, the conversation shifted to Graham’s later life and career. He admits admits that the highlight of his career was being asked to serve as Canada’s Foreign Minister. “You couldn’t be the Foreign Minister of this country without saying that the day the Prime Minister [calls asking you to serve as Foreign Minister] was one of the best. I mean, to think that I would be representing my country – particularly the country that Canada is on the world stage – was extraordinary.” Graham also admits, however, that his professional life was not without its lows. “The biggest disappointment was when I lost the 1988 [federal election] in Rosedale. I was pronounced the winner of the election that night but then they counted the absentee ballots and I went from winning by 400 votes to losing by 60 votes. I woke up in the morning thinking I was going to Ottawa, but by 10 A.M. I was teaching at the law school again. That’s what politics is. That’s the nature of politics.” Graham’s office was well-appointed with the trapping of a lifetime of travel. His first trip to Iraq – the country that would define his tenure as Foreign Minister – was in 1960. “I was first in Iraq in 1960, and I was in jail in Baghdad in 1960. Someone had tried


Salterrae • December 2013 to assassinate [then Iraqi President] Abd alKarim Qasim. My friend and I were driving through the Middle East in a Land Rover and had shotguns with us so we were arrested. Anyway, we were incarcerated a while and were eventually released.” In Graham’s description of the events leading to Canada’s decision not to join the Iraq War, one gets a strong sense of how personal diplomacy can be. “As the Foreign Minister, I had regular meetings with [then United States Secretary of State] Colin Powell about what the Americans were going to do, and the Prime Minister informed [then President] Bush that we wouldn’t be going without a UN mandate. I had talked to Powell about this, I used to talk to [then United States Ambassador to Canada] Paul Cellucci, who believed Canada would come along anyway. He had a lot of friends in the defence department who said ‘don’t worry, [the Canadians] say they won’t [participate], but they will.’... he made a bad mistake, telling the President and misinforming the American Government as to what our position was.” “I was speaking to [UN weapons inspector] Hans Blix, who was telling me that there was no indication that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. There was a lot of insane intelligence going around – some of which we now know was totally manufactured. Blix warned that we be very careful what we believed regarding intelligence.” As Graham continues, it is apparent that Canada played an important role in discussions prior to the war, “[Other nations were asking us], ‘what is Colin Powell going to do?’ [other nations believed] that we had some secret communication channel with the United States that nobody else in the G8 had.” In reality Graham was busy, “trying to persuade the Americans not to go without the UN, trying to keep the UN involved.” To him, the situation in Iraq during the United States’ “shock and awe” bombing campaign had a personal dimension. “My son Patrick, who wrote for the National Post, was asked to go to Baghdad at the time the bombing took place. I tried my best to speak to him on a regular basis.” Talking to his son, he received first hand information of the situation on the ground. “One day sitting in my Ottawa office I

phoned asking where he was.” Graham grimaces, “he answered that he was sitting in a toilet across the river because it seemed to be the safest place to be, as they were bombing during ‘shock and awe.’” • • • Having looked through the past, the conversation then turns to the future of Trinity College. As Chancellor of the college and Chair of Trinity’s Provost Search Committee, Graham has a vision for the future. “These days you need a provost that can practically walk on water, so you can’t find someone that can fulfill possibly every desire. But both [former Provost Margaret MacMillan] and [former Provost Andy Orchard] demonstrated that if you are going to run a college like Trinity, you need to have a good sense of the students who are at the centre of what we are all about. Building from that, you need a provost who has a sense how Trinity fits within the University framework, because that’s quite tricky. We want to be able to maneuver ourselves to be in the best position within the University framework.” Graham does not believe, however, that this person must be strictly political. “Andy was politically savvy, but he wasn’t a politician: he was a consummate when it came to handling the University. He had them eating out of his hand at Simcoe Hall.”

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Beyond the student experience and politics of the University, Graham highlights the changing economic realities of Canadian universities. “You have to have somebody who’s willing to put their shoulder to the wheel in terms of fundraising. One of the unfortunate truths of modern education in our country is that, while we are supposed to be a governmentfunded university, we’re not. The government is funding only 60% of our requirements. Fundraising is now a characteristic of the job, as never before. I spent a lot of time talking with Andy about the gift I gave. By giving it, we hoped to lift Trinity up and give it additional clout within the University’s structure.” Graham also recognizes fundamental changes taking place in the classroom. “I have come away feeling that we are on the cusp of a revolution in the way education is delivered. So you need someone with a sense of where education is going. What is College going to have to be doing five years from now, not five years ago. We are lucky at Trinity that we have a high calibre of students, but that provides us with a challenge of providing a high level of education. This was another impetus for creating the centre.” “We have such great students at Trinity, now lets make sure that the educational experience is living up to that.”


Veronica Stewart • Study Spaces

In pursuit of the 4.o A Trinity student’s guide to hidden libraries and secret study spaces By: Veronica Stewart College movies paint an unrealistic picture of life for the modern university student. Unlike Hollywood, we have embraced sweatpants for all occasions, learned the hard truth about pulling an all-nighter, and frequently choose both sleep and schoolwork over our social lives. The main difference between fiction and reality is that in real life, you have real work and inconvenient deadlines that lead to a stressful lifestyle. One of the best ways to manage the stress is to find a good place to study. It is for that reason that I have tirelessly searched to bring you the antidote to the Robarts blues: five unique study spaces built for boosting your GPA in time for exams. Graham Library: Third Floor Reading Rooms Let me make it clear that I am aware that Graham Library is neither hidden, nor a secret. It is the main study space for students of Trinity College. If you are confident that you know every inch of this sacred space, then by all means skip ahead to the next study space. If, however, you wish to discover the best-hidden gem in Graham, then read on. You can find the third floor reading rooms all the way up Graham’s stairs, on both the far north and south sides of the building. You will undoubtedly have seen the doors at the end of the corridor, but have you seen what lies behind them? Unfortunately, you will not stumble into Narnia, but you will find Trinity’s best kept secret. Each reading room is furnished with a large table, perfect for spreading out all of your papers and books. Despite being similar, each of these two spaces has its own atmosphere. The northern room is reserved for silent study; if you need privacy and guaranteed peace and quiet from the first years on the floors below, there is no better option. The southern reading room, on the other hand, is privy to one of the best views on campus. The only mentionable downside of these spaces is the location – they are as far away from the washroom as possible. There is a silver lining, however. For those looking to squeeze some exercise out of exam time, the stairs make caffeine-fuelled bathroom breaks quite a workout. Stedman Library Exam season means busy buildings, so what happens when Graham is full? Like all good students, you should have a back-up plan. Take a detour to St. Hilda’s, walk through the doors, head up the stairs, turn right, and you will find Stedman Library. It is more akin to an aristocratic drawing room than a functional library, but that does not matter. There are empty desks, chairs, and couches. Most importantly, there is silence. No more fighting over the fireplace rooms in Graham – you have your own here, and

if you want fresh air you can crack open a window. History buffs will find St. Hilda’s motto, Timor Dei Principium Sapientiae ,“Fear of God is the Foundation of Wisdom” in the room, if they look hard enough. It is important to note that, despite the Nineteenth= century charm, the strict silence enforced in this space means little when a game is on at Varsity Stadium. Hart House Library As I reach the halfway point of my third year at the University of Toronto, I have been lost often enough to take pride in what is now an extensive knowledge of this campus. It was not until I set off to research this article, however, that I set foot in the Hart House Library. Tucked away in the building’s far west corner, the library is easily missed if you are not looking for it. Once you pass through its wooden doors, however, you will be transported back in time. The stone fireplace is the first feature to catch your eye, but is by no means the last. From the vaulted ceiling design to the enchanting stained glass, it is easy to believe you have stepped into a reading room halfway across the world at Oxford or Cambridge. Be warned: part of the library’s charm is its ambient lighting, which may not be ideal for late night study sessions. And although it may appear to be straight out of Downton Abbey, it is by no means your own private library. Comfortable seats are limited. Despite the dearth of seating, this second floor study sanctuary is one of the university’s hidden gems at just a

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stones throw from Trinity. The Bar Mercurio This Bloor St. Cafe possesses an ambient feel reminiscent of a chic Parisian bistro. If you are looking to enjoy a latte or a macaroon with your 50 pages of Plato, search no further. As an added bonus, University of Toronto students who flash their Tcard receive twenty percent off all purchases.

This spot is one of the University of Toronto’s best kept study secrets. Victoria University’s Law Library This spot is one of the University of Toronto’s best kept study secrets. After trekking up three flights of stairs, the eager student is confronted by two ominous wooden doors. Do not be afraid to open them. You will be delighted with what is inside. This library features large windows, a hidden spiral staircase, and is intimate enough to feel like a living room, albeit in an extravagant mansion. For those of you on study dates, the desks on the upstairs balcony are the perfect size for two.


Salterrae • December 2013

Traditions Under Review From Fourth Year Ice Bars to Midnight Run Glitter

By: Kate Motluk

Photography: Rebecca Fallowfield & Donald Belfon

Tradition is rarely uncontentious. Old customs inevitably clash with those of the present, often demanding change. Trinity today exists in a climate more committed than ever before to principles of diversity and equality. As a result, many of our college’s traditions are under review. In most College debates on such issues, two camps have emerged: those who value tradition over all else, and those who would happily see history nixed in the name of progress. The challenge that has faced many student leaders as a result is to refashion these traditions to fall somewhere in between these extremes. Such is the problem currently facing Trinity traditions including formal rushes, Fourth Year Bar, and Initiations Week.

The Rush: The Rush is an integral part of Trinity’s two traditional balls, Saints and Conversat. While the records are hazy on how long the rushes have existed, they hearken back at least to the days of gender segregated residences. The Saints Rush is typically done Sadie Hawkins style: women line up and rush the Men of College at the stroke of midnight. A man chased down by a woman of college in this way is not allowed to refuse her invitation to the Saints Ball. The Conversat Rush simply reverses the gendered direction of the rush, the caveat being that the Women of College are not obliged to accept any particular invitation. The rushes continues to be a well liked tradition, especially as they give Trinity students an excuse to hold a “Rush” party one month in advance of the Saints and Conversat balls proper. The Rush, however, has been criticized as being gender normative. It is restrictive for students who do not feel they fit into the gender categories it formally recognizes, as well as to individuals seeking a date of the same sex. Further, while the custom of men being unable to decline

an impromptu rather than formal and gender designated rush. Rather than having the rush occur at midnight, this format has attendees unaware of when the Rush will happen, and makes them wait instead for a predetermined signal. While this relaxes the women versus men dichotomy of the traditional format, previous attempts to enact it have left many dissatisfied. Often people would be standing directly next to their intended date, or did not recognize the signal until too late. The general consensus was that impromptu rushes failed to capture the essence of the tradition. This year, the Saints Ball executive committee abandoned a traditional rush format after students voiced concerns with the format on the event’s Facebook page. The solution proposed by

Despite logistical

problems, new formats

have potential

is usually ignored, it nonetheless causes discomfort from time to time. Efforts have been made in the past to address these concerns. Several formats have been tried, none with resounding success, but moderate progress has been made in attempting

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the executive was to split the cluster of students into two gender blind groups. One would be designated the “rusher” line by a coinflip, and the other the “rushees”. This solution was problematic, as one group was significantly larger than the other. The change also displeased some of the hard line traditionalists, who thought the change undermined the original format. Despite logistical problems, new formats have potential. It has been suggested that announcing which side will be the one “rushing” could appease some of the traditionalists, while the vast majority of attendees will likely join in either group happily enough. The method Conversat chooses will determine the direction this tradition is headed.


Kate Motluck • Traditions Under Review

Fourth Year Bar: At Fourth Year Bar, two of Trinity’s favourite activities are at odds: fiscal responsibility and indulgent consumption of alcohol. This tradition, like the Rush, accompanies Saints and Con-

These formal events are trouble makers, and one of Trinity’s oldest traditions versat Balls. These formal events are trouble makers, and one of Trinity’s oldest traditions. Fourth Year Bar provides an open – and sometimes icy – bar in Seeley Hall for two hours prior to the Saints and Conversat balls. Often, lower years students strategically rush a Fourth Year, in the hopes of securing a place at the Fourth Year only extravaganza. “Year parties” date back to at least the 1960s, and special events for the graduating Fourth Year class have been fixtures throughout Trinity’s past. Fourth Year Bar has been held in several locations, from Stedman Library, to the Provost’s Lodge, but made its home in Seeley Hall. The

venue-changes came about as a result of the librarian’s concerns for the safety of Stedman’s books, and the Provost’s concerns for the safety of his bed sheets. In past years, Fourth Year Bar was financed from the leftover resources of each graduating class’ “Year Fund”, a discretionary fund established in each class’ first year. This system was abolished several years ago, because of the exorbitant bank fees the “Year Funds” incurred over

their lifespans. The Fourth Year Bar budget is now passed through the Trinity College Meeting. Fourth Year Bar budgets have drawn criticism for forging somewhat new territory in terms of expenses, and not all members of college are on board. Their fears are founded on more than a desire to destroy the alcohol-laden dreams of soon-to-be graduates. Critics worry that if someday the TCM surplus runs out, the current model will become unsustainable.

Initiations Week: Of all Trinity’s traditions, Initiations Week has undoubtedly changed the most over the years. Though a permanent thorn in the administration’s side, Initiations week remains a fundamental component of Trinity culture. This week of assorted initiations is fondly looked back upon by many members of college, who come out of it feeling newly connected to the community, though few appreciate the glitter. Several traditions from this week have disappeared entirely, such as the halos that First Year girls would wear around campus, adorned with bells and tinsel, before they were gowned in. Other events, such as Steeple Chase and Cake Fight, have adapted themselves considerably to fit modern safety standards. The Midnight Run is often the most controversial of Initiations Week activities. It can seem to be the most socially com-

Trinity is both a

resilient and traditional body. It has still proven

itself over the years to be adaptable

pulsory of all the events, and it promotes intercollegiate rivalry. This event is also promoted by traditionalists as one of the most engaging, since the friendly college rivalry it promotes is one thing many Trinity College students hold dear. The ad-

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ministration and indeed the student body have shown themselves committed to fostering the traditional nature of these events while making them inclusive. Notwithstanding this, there are still some who feel alienated by Initiation Week. Sometimes, teasing and joking that can go too far. Elements of these events may always be polarizing, and never appeal to the masses. Then again, the same could be said about the Finance Committee meetings. Trinity is both a resilient and traditional body. It has still proven itself over the years to be adaptable. In the coming years many traditions will need to evolve from their current practices, but they will never disappear completely. We will always have those willing to chase down mitre thieves, pillage sherry receptions, speak at the Lit, pose for the Welch calendar, or spend a TCM debating the number of kegs for Quad Party.


Salterrae • December 2013

Gas - Strachan - Omy By: Amanda Greer Illustration: Dryden Rainbow It is that time of

1) Add Sriracha (Note: an impending shortage due to a plant shuttering may soon price this nectar of the gods out of your sweaty fists.) 2) Buy frozen vegetables and toss them in there. Now it is stir-fry. You are welcome. 3) Use the bow and arrow from your Katniss Everdeeen costume that you thought would be so creative and unique for Halloween 2012 to hunt quad squirrels. They need to learn their place. Create a broth. It is every Hunger Games fantasy come true.

year again: Strachan food has lost its at best questionable appeal. Midterms and assignments have piled up around you, a testament to the empty promise of an illustrious career and a six-figure salary. By now, you have been reduced to a Trinwear-toting hermit. We have all been there. Your 17-page paper on narcotics in ancient Babylonia might seem so overwhelmingly pointless – or pointlessly overwhelming – that you can’t even leave your room to grab a bite from the international (read: vegan) bar in Strachan. I am here to tell you not to give up hope. There are still ways to eat your feelings, even on the busiest days of the semester. Without further ado, here are five dorm room food hacks that will have you eating like the cast of Downton Abbey in a few short minutes. Note: Comparing our unwashed quaddwellers to the cast of Downton Abbey might make it seem like these are classy dorm room hacks. They are not. Please, check your superiority complex and sense of entitlement at the door.

Revel in nostalgia. Remember those summer evenings from your awkward pre-pubescent years, when you huddled around a smoky campfire with several other acneridden tweens? Making S’mores, letting the gooey marshmallow and melted chocolate ooze out from between two graham crackers, you would catch the eye of a special someone from across the dancing flames. You would both smile nervously, flash your glittering orthodontia, adjust your wiry eyeglasses on your freckly noses, and hear the strains of Bonnie Raitt’s “Let’s Give ‘Em Something to Talk About” running through your heads. This entire cringe-worthy memory can be re-created in your own dorm room. You only have to substitute the campfire with a Bic lighter and the “special someone” with a disappointing Saints date. If pyrotechnics are not your style, you can throw graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows into a microwave to make s’mores that reach the pinnacle of gooey goodness.

Use your iron to make grilled cheese. Your schedule is probably pretty tight between IR society luncheons and brown-nose sessions with professors, so using a simple appliance to multitask is a lifesaver. Throw together a grilled cheese as per usual, but instead of going on a hunt for a useable stove, use an iron to grill that baby to perfection. If this seems classless to you, throw in some meat and call it a panini. Make a mug cake. This one is a mind buster, because it is delicious and dead easy to make. Grab a coffee mug and add the following: 4 tablespoons self-rising flour 4 tablespoons white granulated sugar 1 egg 3 tablespoons cocoa powder 3 tablespoons Nutella 3 tablespoons milk 3 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil Stick the mug into a microwave for 1.5-3 minutes, thank Rob Ford for all of his hard work, and dig in.

. Give into the college student stereotype. Ramen You have probably heard your friends at lesserknown institutions talking about it. It is dirt cheap and leaves room to be creative. To get the basic look, pour some hot water from your electric kettle onto the ramen. It will cook those noodles faster than an egg on the Fourth of July. If you want to get crafty, there are a few things you can do:

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Make Your Dreams Come True with Five-Minute Mac n’ Cheese You heard correctly. Throw these ingredients together and stick them in a common room microwave for 3 minutes: 1/2 pound cooked pasta of choice 2 cups grated cheddar cheese 1 cup whole milk 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt Note: It is natural to cry upon consumption. Living off Strachan food is a tricky business. First years, listen up: you need to be creative. These five dorm room food hacks will get you started on your quest to quell nighttime hunger pains. Take these tips, experiment on your own, and may the odds be ever in your favour.


Aditya Rau • Op-ed: Ubuntu

Ubuntu

By: Aditya Rau

Are we making the best of Trinity’s institutions? Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term used by the Nguni People, who inhabit parts of southern Africa. Although a close literal translation would interpret the term to mean “human kindness,” it is in fact a philosophy that is most aptly expressed as “I am because we are”. A strong sense of community sets Trinity apart. From the moment First Years arrive and are (warmly?) welcomed into our hallowed halls, to the friendships that sustain us during midterm season, to the symbiotic inter-year relationships in place, it is our ability to work together and care for each other that allows us to emerge from the contest with the crown in hand. Being constantly surrounded by such a vibrant community, I often have to remind myself of how fortunate we are to be a part of such a distinct academic and social ecosystem. Conversations with friends from other Ontario universities reveal this is not the status quo everywhere. At Western, for example, inter-year engagement is limited to interactions with upper-year resi-

dence Sophs and Dons, and residences are almost uniquely inhabited by First Years. Trinity’s strength is then, first and foremost, a product of the inimitable and dynamic community of which I am proud to be a member. An outstanding example of Ubuntu at Trinity is the way in which our community came together to hold “Trinity’s Run for Venissa”. Venissa, a 2nd year student, was recently diagnosed with cancer and was unable to return to College this year. Stephanie Lim-Reinders, Jackie Graham and Jess Gosio, friends of Venissa, all took action. They believed that as a community, we could support Venissa’s battle with cancer by running to show our solidarity. Stephanie, Jackie and Jess mobilized students by working with institutions that shape the College’s agenda and culture – the TCBS, Finance Committee and the TCM. Moreover, student clubs such as the TCVS and SHAA agreed to sponsor the event, while Sodexo donated refreshments. The Run for Venissa was met with support from all levels of student governance and from student societies. Stephanie effectively sums up our ability to live the philosophy of Ubuntu, commenting that by drawing on student governance to engage students, “[e]ven people who didn’t know [Venissa] came out to support her... The fact that we blew our goal out of the water by 2-3 times is a really strong reflection of how close a community Trinity is.” While we do excel as a community, I believe that we can do better. This became evident recently when the issue of the Saints Rush format came up for discussion. Trinity is faced with a unique dilemma – how to uphold tradition while embracing change. While many traditions may not lend themselves to existing College culture, the manner by which students engaged in It is our ability to work together and the recent Saints Rush debate did not utilize the institutions that were meant care for each other that allows us to to facilitate discussions of this type. The discussion on this issue was a poor emerge from the contest with the online testament to our ability to come together and deal with issues that define undercrown in hand graduate experiences. It became apparent that some students were more inter-

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Illustrations: Alyssa Stokvis-Hauer ested in publicly condemning existing traditions instead of responsibly engaging in a productive conversation. Hurling personal accusations from behind a keyboard does not serve the interests of students. We can, and should be better, and our democracy provides us with a chance to do just that.

While we do excel as a community, I believe that we can do better

If we are to both uphold tradition and embrace the ever-changing demographic of the College, it is important that we engage in democratic discourse. We need to remind ourselves that Trinity is only able to succeed because of the institutions that govern it. The raison d’etre of the Finance Committee, the TCBS and the TCM is for students to support each other and, in turn, to support our common endeavors. Moreover, they serve as open forums, in which discussion and debate are regulated and encouraged. As students, each of us is responsible for the community that we belong to. Trinity is because we are. We need to better engage with our democracy by being present at TCMs, by using open forums to responsibly engage in dialogue, by believing that each of us is individually responsible for academic and social outcomes that define the College. It is only when we recognize and value the importance of our democracy that we can, first, succeed as a community and then triumph as individuals. The contest stands before us. If we embrace the philosophy of Ubuntu, I have no doubt that we will emerge with the crown in hand. Aditya Rau was a co-chair of “Saints on the Nile” 2013


Salterrae • December 2013

By: Sheena Singh Illustration: Alyssa Stokvis-Hauer “Studying abroad” is not a term heard often around Trinity College. It is uncommon because of the way Trinity students are: comfortable inside the four walls of the quad. When I first spoke to my friends about the

possibility of completing my third year abroad, I received either blank stares or incredulous questions. Few understood how leaving Trinity could be a serious consideration, or how I would survive. To be honest, I was not sure either. Almost a year later, I am in my Parisian studio drinking wine, eating cheese, falling madly in love and wandering the streets of Montmartre... Just kidding. I am drinking though.

Postcards from

Some Trinity habits cannot be easily given up. Jokes aside, if you are one of those people who thought about studying abroad before you arrived at university, I am here to tell you that it is worth more than a fleeting thought. But first, some basics. Ask Yourself, And Ask Again: Do You Want To Go? The only thing I knew for sure about studying abroad was that it was my decision. I had been dreaming about it for years. If you can explain to yourself why you want to go on exchange, that’s all that counts. Explaining it to others is secondary. I believe that studying abroad is an eye-opening experience, an exciting immersion in another culture that cannot be emulated by reading or brief travel. My decision was not about wanting a ‘party semester’ or an exotic French fling: it was about my personal growth as an – almost – adult. That is my story, what is yours?

Paris

A guide to studying abroad

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Sheena Singh • Postcards from Paris Secondly, do not doubt that you are making a big commitment and leaving everyone and everything behind. Things can change between yourself and others over a semester or a year, and leaving does involve some risk. Despite this, do not forget that good friends will be there for you. It may sound cliche that I would consider the impact on my social life first, but it’s not – home is where the heart is, and Trinity is mine. Baby Steps Now that you have decided that you maybe-sortof want to go on exchange, I have bad news. Planning an exchange requires a lot of work on your part. The obvious thing is to start with research. Plan out your degree requirements, think about the courses you want to take, and make sure that your ideas work out academically. Careful academic planning is the most important component of your research; you do not want to regret your decisions later on. Thankfully, there are many resources for this. My primary resource was an upper-year who had completed an exchange in Paris before me. I would also suggest the Trinity College Registrar and the people at the University of Toronto’s Centre for International Experience (CIE). The more questions you ask early on, the better. We are lucky at the University of Toronto to have over 350 partner schools available for academic exchange. Although this number may seem daunting, it is manageable. Narrow the list of possibilities according to your preferences. I wanted to go to Europe, I spoke French, I was studying Political Science. These kinds of details are crucial to your decision. Once you choose an institution, you will have to submit a preliminary list of courses, obtain references, and navigate a tedious bureaucracy. Do not fear this process. The courses you submit are not binding. The University of Toronto is aware that you are a Second or Third Year student with huge classes and that references are difficult to obtain. Take it one step at a time and appeal to the resources at your disposal. The CIE can be a big help. It is not worth further explaining the specifics of the application process, because once you choose an institution, you will be contacted regularly with information. I panicked constantly while working out the details of my exchange, but trusted that if I took it one day at a time, things would work out. I was, incidentally, right. Take it one day at a time. The Hard Part The worst feeling is when, after all the research and administrative issues, self-doubt, and confusion, you realize that the biggest challenge of your exchange is yet to come. You have to create

a new life somewhere else. I moved to Paris in August, found an apartment, and started school all wide-eyed and keen in September. Within a week, it became painfully evident that I had been starstruck by the city, and had forgotten about all the “real life” problems of moving, namely,

Careful academic planning is the most important component of your research cooking, paying rent, and meeting people. Settling in was difficult at first, but did not take away from my experience. Exchange makes the places you go much more real. While there are ups and

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downs involved, there are few things more exciting than being able to say that you lived in a city that was not your home. To be able to say it, however, you must actually do it. A year or semester abroad is the perfect time to cut yourself a little slack in terms of life plans and career goals, and enjoy yourself; walk around for hours, talk to complete strangers, take the chance to travel whenever you can. It is a privilege to be able to say you lived in more than one place – be grateful for what the world can show you, and you will be shown whatever your heart desires. On that note, all I have to leave you with is that studying abroad will change your perspective. Trinity College First Years may be blindsided by how quickly they go from enthusiastic to jaded. Consider exchange so you can appreciate a new place, Trinity, and yourself. A small step away from your comfort zone will give you a new perspective, great stories to share, and a break from your routine university life. If an exchange is something you are really interested in, just go for it. As an exchange student, I regret to inform you that everything said about living abroad in the hipster travel blogs you follow on the internet is absolutely true.


Salterrae • December 2013

SAINTS NILE ON THE

One Night in the Ancient Near East

By: Marcus Tutert Photography By: Rebecca Fallowfield Walking into St. Hilda’s the night of Saturday November 16th was akin to walking through an Egyptian paradise on the banks of the river Nile. From the elaborate photo stations to the stunning décor around Melinda Seaman and Cartwright Hall, this year’s Saints’ Ball – “Saints’ on the

Nile”– was truly one to remember. This year’s Saints’ Charity Ball was co-chaired by Christian Medeiros, Maddie Taylor and Aditya Rau. The executive committee worked countless hours to set up the grand affair, ensuring an excellent event for participants throughout the week leading up to the Saints’ Ball. The week of events was planned by Amy Yvorchuk and Iris Robin. As is customary, the Saints’ Rush took place a month prior to the ball itself. This year’s rush was arguably more spontaneous and progressive than the traditional format, as it separated students into lines with no gender designation. The line doing the “rushing” was decided with the flip of a coin. Medeiros remarked that the event, “Turned out relatively well, even with this new format”. He went on to emphasize his feeling that in advance of future balls, the Rush format should be more comprehensively discussed through Trinity College forums such as the TCM. The first event of Saints Week, “Saints goes to the ROM”, gave Men and Women of College an opportunity to forego studying and enjoy

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Egyptian artifacts. Other events in the lead up to the ball included “Tuts Trivia”, an Egyptian trivia night, and the Trinity College Literary Institute (The Lit) Saints debate, wherein co-chair Maddie Taylor discussed the doomed “Convercar” of last year’s Conversat Ball. A particular highlight of the week was “Hatshepsut’s Chocolate High Table Dinner”, organized by Sebastian Dutz. The event marked the first time a High Table has been combined with a “Chocolate Dinner”, a Saints event customarily held in Melinda Seaman Hall. Though initially concerned about the new location, Taylor was

At several points throughout the night, both Cartwright hall and Melinda Seaman reached full capacity delighted with the way the event unfolded, noting in particular that, “[Strachan Hall] was at full capacity.” The week in events concluded on Friday with a Dance Dance Revolution competition and a coffeehouse showcasing acts from talented Men and Women of College. These included a stunning acoustic rendition of Ed Sheeran and Passenger’s “No Diggidy” from Maha Naqi and Allison Spiegel, as well as an emotional reading of Michael Cavuto’s slam poem, “4 A.M. in the Newark


Marcus Tutert • Saints on the Nile the dance floor. When the ball ended in the early morning, the Executive committee began work tearing down the decorations they had spent their weekend setting up. Their hard work over several months boiled down to several hours of fun for the members of Trinity College. Rau remarked that “Saints’ Ball was a resounding success - a testament to the hard work, dedication and passion of the best Executive that I have

International Airport” by Julian Butterfield, Hamish Ballantyne, Alex Mackay, and Michael Cavuto. Members of the Saints Ball executive committee members were thrilled with turnout at each of the events, noting that the tremendous work was worth the payoff of seeing Men and Women of College enjoy the week. Taylor remarked, “It was 7 months of hard work planning these events, trying to adhere to tradition, while adding new events that were tailored to the ball’s theme.” The fundraising recipient of this year’s Saints’ ball was Red Door Family Shelter, a Toronto not-for-profit organization which focuses on providing services to individuals re-

quiring safe and supportive emergency shelter. Through ticket sales, bake sales, donations, and event sign-ups, money was raised for this great cause. The Saints’ Executive brought in an employee of the shelter to speak with students at Chocolate Dinner about Red Door and its mission to help those in vulnerable situations. On Saturday, the ball itself arrived, ending days of feverish decoration and preparation on the part of the Saints Executive. St. Hilda’s filled with partygoers, and at several points throughout the night, both Cartwright hall and Melinda Seaman reached full capacity. The atmosphere for the dances were set by the efforts of Elyse Comeau and Donald Belfon, who designed everything from the decorations to the night’s music playlists. The Rigby room hosted an elaborate photo-booth, where friends and dates took photos and cooled down from

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This year’s Saints Ball will always be an unforgettable night for me and I hope that other members of College will also carry it with them throughout the their time at Trinity had the privilege of working with”, adding that, “This year’s Saints’ Ball will always be an unforgettable night for me and I hope that other members of College will also carry it with them throughout their time at Trinity.”


Salterrae • December 2013

By: Amanda Greer What’s in store for your winter season? and Rebecca Zhu Aquarius (21 January-19 February): This Chrismukkah, Uranus is precariously close to the dance floor. Feel free to get your freak on, but know that when the discotheque uploads that unfortunate photo of you to Facebook, your friends will make sure that you never forget. Pisces (20 February-20 March): Mars is feeling particularly social this festive season. You may be the life of the party, but don’t take it a step too far. Refrain from “bringing in the New Year” with more than five people. Aries (21 March-20 April): Beware of the light of Jupiter’s moons. It will expose your deepest, darkest secrets to your archest of nemeses. Your shimmering sequined party dress or tight tuxedo trousers are perfect for New Year’s Eve, but next time, maybe don’t go commando. Taurus (21 April-21 May): Saturn is sinking through infinite space and time. Do not stand up to figures of authority. It is wise not to resist when a security guard or bouncer or mother tries to remove that glass of spiked apple cider from your greasy, under-aged fingers. Refusal to comply will result in your immediate expulsion from the college.

Venus and Saturn will be felicitously intertwined this holiday season

Gemini (22 May-21 June): Venus is feeling extra lucky this time of year. Play your cards right, and maybe you could end up spending the holidays with with a set of identical twins—looks like Full House has been renewed for a holiday special!

Cancer (22 June-22 July): This holiday season, Neptune rests in the seventh house, creating the perfect atmosphere for sweet seduction. Light a fire in the grate, bust out some Nat King Cole, and prepare to enter the Winter Wonderland of your wildest fantasies. Make sure all intentions are clear, or risk receiving a “nutcracker”.

Leo (23 July-22 August): Mars is orbiting Pluto, you know what that means: trouble is brewing. At your uncle twice removed’s holiday party, you might see mommy kissing Santa Claus. However, Santa Claus does not exist. That is your dad’s boss. Your parents are getting a divorce. Virgo (23 August-23 September): Neptune shines brightly through the upcoming holidays, heralding the arrival of a dark and beautiful stranger from Central America. Let your inhibitions slide, and go for a wild, Ricky Martin-esque holiday fling. You’ll be singing “Feliz Navidad” all night long.

Moderation is a virtue. Vomit is not. Libra (24 September-23 October): This non-denominational holiday season, the scales are balanced. This does not, however, mean that you should take advantage of any and all liquid commodities you may and will come across. Moderation is a virtue. Vomit is not. Scorpio (24 October-22 November): Just like Charlie Brown, you’ll try extra hard this holiday season to get everyone into the Christmas spirit. But, just like Charlie Brown, no one will listen to you. Instead, they’ll make fun of your inferior Christmas tree, and Snoopy will get all the glory just for being a dog. Screw it — buy yourself the new iPhone and call it a day. Sagittarius (23 November-21 December): Mistletoe will be in abundance in the coming weeks. Make sure you observe who’s standing underneath before taking part in the timeless face-sucking tradition, or you’ll have to explain to your parents that yes, you realize that was your seventh grade music teacher, and no, that was not how you got an A in their class. Capricorn (22 December-20 January): Venus and Saturn will be felicitously intertwined this holiday season, just like the bodies of you and your high school boyfriend/girlfriend who you swore you would break-up with over Thanksgiving, but just couldn’t because your mothers take the same Yogalates class. It might be time to consider ending your reindeer games.

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HOR OSC OPE HOR OSC OPE HOR OSC OPE


Sonia Liang • Sexual healing

Sexual Healing Ditch the default this December By: Sonia Liang Illustrations By: Tamara Myhal even go on a midnight swim. If you end up trying this in Barcelona, you will find that the Spaniards have never heard of closing time. You can go from tequila to the beach to more tequila at 5:30 AM. Cons: Sand.

The Car:

Living at Trinity College might make you complacent. “About what?”, you may ask. “Is it my grades, my involvement in student politics, or my extracurricular activities?” Think again. I am alluding to the great convenience all resident Trinity students enjoy of a bed two steps from where you eat, go to class, cram for midterms, and let loose with friends. While this makes it easy to act on your carnal impulses close to home, it also makes you lazy. Residence living kills some of the creative spirit necessary for an exciting sex life. When your bed is so conveniently located, you may be less likely to “diversify” the location of your nocturnal dalliances. On the other hand, if you were a non-resident student and lived an hour and a half away with your parents to boot, you might be a bit more adventurous. But where?

The Beach: Save this for your next trip to Mexico, or sultry summers by the French Riviera. The Toronto Harbourfront is not recommended.

Be creative, be inspired. Just don’t get arrested for indecent exposure. Pros: Gentle waves lapping at your feet, the sun rising on the horizon, the rest of the world is asleep – what more could you ask for? You might be lucky and find a convenient beach chair. You can

The classic quickie: A car is the perfect place for anyone who wants to spice things up without risking public exposure. Pros: You get the thrill of hooking up somewhere that you should not – especially if it is not your own car – while maintaining respectable privacy. This is provided you are the only one with the keys, and you’re not parked under a glaring streetlight. Cons: Space. Unless you have a truck, jeep or RV, legs will end up in weird places.

The Great Outdoors: Whether it is a nice field by your cottage, or a deserted park, this one has potential. Living in the big city, you might feel that you miss out on opportunities to get close to nature. At the same time, your sultry sexual spirit is being suffocated by your dorm room. Why not kill two birds with one stone? Just don’t let your interpretation of the great outdoors be Queen’s Park. Not only is it government property, it is a glorified roundabout. Pros: The majesty of the outdoors speaks for its self. Cons: Animal, pine-cones, and trash can hide in the leaves. You don’t want to know.

The Steam Tunnels: Winter is coming. The grassy ground inthe Quad is frozen, fuzzy sweaters and hats are all the rage, and your face feels like it’s going to fall off every time you have to be outside for more than ten minutes. At times like these, neither the beach nor the park are options. However, the steam tunnels faithfully remain.

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Pros: Its steamy down there.

Cons: The traffic. If someone walks by, it will be someone you know. Someone will walk by because it is cold, and no one wants to brave the elements. You will make really awkward eyecontact with them in the Strachan the next day.

The Toronto Harbourfront is not recommended Robarts: The infamous Robarts challenge: rumours have circulated since it opened in 1973, whispered in all corners of U of T. Which brave and desperate souls have attempted it? Who has been caught? Some have succeeded, skillfully concealing their deed from their peers: it remains a secret triumph, a memory that warms the heart in depths of despair. Many more wish they dared but alas, have not. Nevertheless, this remains on the bucket-lista-la-sex for many U of T students. Where there are libraries and frustrated college students, there will be libidinous mischief. For further consultation, please speak to Ross Geller. Pros: You’ll have a really great story when you and your buddies reminisce about your crazy college days. Cons: A terrible place to get caught. The mortification levels are simply unparalleled. Also, you’ll have to be ultra quiet. In the end, don’t be complacent. Be creative, be inspired. Just don’t get arrested for indecent exposure. That’s it for now, fellow Trinitrons.


Salterrae • December 2013 ART and LITERATURE What: Life on the Grid: 100 Years of Street Photography in Toronto - This free exhibit brings together photos documenting 100 years of life in Toronto from street level. Toronto landmarks like the St. Lawrence Market, Yonge Street, and Kensington Market look at once recognizable, and totally different. Where: City of Toronto Archives, 255 Spadina Rd. When: Until May 1. Cost: Free. What: Self-Portrait: As I Think of Myself - With some of the world’s most famed visual artists featured in this exhibit, Self-portrait: As I Think of Myself is a record of the artists’ self-reflection. Featuring the AGO’s autobiographical art from the 1500s to the present, clues to each artist’s perception of themselves and their identity is revealed in this curated collection of self-portraits. Some of the artists featured include Rembrandt, Käthe Kollwitz, Edvard Munch, Greg Curnoe, and Alex Colville. Where: The Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas St. West. When: Until December 8. Cost: $11 for full-time students. MUSIC and THEATER What: Les Miserables - Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Les Miserables is having its Canadian premiere, with new staging and Canadian actor Ramin Karimloo in the lead role as Jean Valjean. Les Miserables is the longest-running musical in the world, having played over ten thousand performances. It won multiple Tony awards during its original 1987 Broadway run. If you went to see the movie last year, why not see the show? Where: The Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King St. West. When: Until February 2. Cost: From $35. There are also rush line tickets available.

Where: The Opera House, 735 Queen St. East. When: December 7. Cost: $38.00+.

Where: 55 Mill St, in the Distillery District. When: November 29 – December 15. Cost: Free.

What: A$AP Ferg – A member of the hip hop collective A$AP Mob, whose other affiliates include A$AP Rocky and Da$h, Ferg’s witty rap lyrics and hip hop beats have made him the recipient of MTV’s Rookie of the Year Award. His latest album, Trap Lord, was released in 2013 to positive reviews. If you are looking for a show representative of the underground rap scene, you cannot get better than this. Do not let the dollar signs deter you. This isn’t Ke$ha. Where: The Opera House, 735 Queen St. East. When: December 11. Cost: $25+.

What: The Ghosts of the University of Toronto - A 90-minute walking tour about the urban legends and terrifying tales of the University of Toronto’s St. George campus is a must see for anyone interested in the supernatural. The campus’s gothic architecture is a fitting space for stories of revenge, anger, and violence. Listen to how author and founding Master Robertson Davies haunts Massey College. Wonder at the biscuit maker who locked his mistress away from the world. Follow the stonemason Paul Diablos and his 1856 murder of Ivan Reznikoff, his rival for a lady’s hand. Rumor has it that the body still lies beneath University College. Where: The Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park. When: Until December 30. Cost: $10.

Things To Do Around Town By: Simone Garcia What: Beyoncé - Pop icon Beyoncé is coming to the ACC as part of The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour. This is her first full tour in three years, and promises to be a bigger and better spectacle than ever before. Beyoncé is also said to be working on a new album, to be released sometime this year. For all those who missed out on her July show, or who want to catch it again, this is a must-see. Where: The Air Canada Centre, 40 Bay St. When: December 16. Cost: $65+. Tickets might be sold out, but you can always scalp or stubhub.

What: MGMT – The Grammy nominated electro-rock band is back in Toronto promoting their third album, MGMT, which came out in September to positive critical reviews. If you loved them before, you’ll love them even more now. Where: The Sound Academy – 11 Polson St. When: December 7. Cost: $35+.

What: Concerts at the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre - Artists from around the world share their talent and passion in six series: vocal, piano, jazz, dance, chamber, and world music. From late September to early June, you can discover exciting artists - both established and emerging, and experience the joy of live performance in an incredible variety of genres. Concerts take place most Tuesdays and Thursdays at noon. Download a brochure at http://www.coc.ca/performancesandtickets/freeconcertseries.aspx Where: The Four Seasons Centre for Performing Art, 145 Queen St. West. When: All winter long. Cost: Free.

What: Tosca – Ironically, Tosca is also an opera, and is being played at the Opera House. Don’t let that confuse you, as this band’s album “Odeon” was released in February 2013. Featuring collaborators from Tosca’s creative inner circle, including vocalists Sarah Callier, Rodney Hunter, and JJ Jones, the album is darker than their previous five, more downbeat, and at times almost ambient. It is unlike anything else out there at the moment.

Culture What: Toronto Christmas Market - The annual holiday street market takes over the Distillery District with local vendors and craftsmen, entertainment, shopping, and more - all inspired by European Christmas Markets. Throughout the market, you can find a stage with musical performers, in addition to carolers, a Ferris Wheel, a beer garden, and of course, Santa and his reindeer.

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What: We Can Be Heroes - The Second City’s latest installment is a collection of sketches, songs, and improv all written and performed by the Second City comedy troupe. The Second City’s work is influenced by news, popular culture, and local events. They are critically-acclaimed and awardwinning performances. Where: 51 Mercer St. When: Until January 12. Cost: $24 and up. This is a 19+ event. What: Skating at Nathan Phillips Square – This annual winter activity is not to be missed, if not solely for the fact that’s it an inexpensive way to get active during the winter. Picture the following: bundling up in a thousand layers, packing your skates and maybe a thermos of spiked - or not - hot apple cider, and heading down to Nathan Phillips Square with someone you love (or you don’t hate). It’s so cute, it could be a rom-com. Where: 100 Queen St. West When: The rink opens on November 23. Cost: Free. Rental skates cost $10. What: One of a Kind Christmas Show - As one of the most anticipated Christmas shopping shows of the year, this event features unique products for everyone. The show gathers the work of approximately 800 artisans for your browsing pleasure. Shop for hand-crafted ceramics, jewellery, furniture, clothing, and accessories. Alternatively, browse art galleries, watch a fashion show, and take part in artistic holiday activities. There are also hands-on workshops where you can make unique gifts, each of which includes breakfast and admission to the show. Where: The Direct Energy Centre, 100 Princes’ Blvd. When: November 28 – December 8. Cost: $7 for students.


December 2013  
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