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STUDENT LIFE

THE INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPER OF WASHINGTON UNIVERSIT Y IN ST. LOUIS SINCE 1878 Crash and burn for Health Services: Johnny Chang’s editorial cartoon makes student opinion on the move to Forsyth clear. Page 4.

Talk abounds about hairy men on campus, Can people are taking over campus! Scene the impact of offensive cartoons, the senior has the scoop on why you need to recycle in class gift and other issues in Forum. Page 5. our Friday Features section. Page 3.

VOLUME 127, NO. 51

With their Bears for Bears campaign, WU athletes managed to collect a record number of these cute fellas for charity. See Page 8.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2006

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Dialogue sheds light on Ben Folds an unlikely friendship set to ‘rock

this bitch’ at spring WILD

v Talk between two

women from warring factions brings in a standing room-only crowd

v Matt Nathanson, local group The

By Marla Friedman Associate Reporter Almost 150 students packed into Northwest Wohl on Tuesday when Washington University’s “Students for a Peaceful Palestinian Israeli Future” hosted a dialogue between two women, one Israeli and one Palestinian. Although Students for a Peaceful Palestinian Israeli Future (SPPIF) had expected a fairly large turnout, not having enough seating for the 140 people who attended was a pleasant surprise. “We expected at least 50,” said Aviva Joffe, acting president of SPPIF. “We were shocked that so many came, and we had to start adding more benches in the back… we had originally requested Ursa’s Fireside and didn’t get it, and, actually, it would

Feed and unnamed third act to open By Mandy Silver News Editor

EITAN HOCHSTER | STUDENT LIFE

Israeli Eliana Avitzour (L) and Palestinian Lama Tarayrah field questions from a crowd of more than 140 Wash. U. students Tuesday night in Wohl Center. The two came to the University to speak at SPPIF’s event “Choosing Peace.” have been too small.” During the dialogue, Palestinian Lama Tarayrah and Israeli Eliana Avitzour spoke about their lives in the midst

Hillel’s executive director resigns By Kristin McGrath Senior News Editor After four and a half years at St. Louis Hillel, the largest Jewish organization at Washington University, Executive Director Margo Hamburger-Fox resigned following a January decision by the organization’s board to replace her. Hamburger-Fox will remain in her position until June 30. “The executive committee made the decision that they wanted to move forward with an executive director that had a different set of skills than mine,” said Hamburger-Fox. “What I’ve done has been great for the organization, and I have a great set of skills, but they want to move in a different direction.” Although she said that the decision was “a little bit of a surprise,” Hamburger-Fox added that she understood the board’s need to “look towards the future.” She plans to use the remainder of her time at St. Louis Hillel to explore other opportunities. “For me this is a great opportunity to look at all my skills and look at what I love and to tailor my next career move to that,” said Hamburger-Fox. “That could be a lot of things, because I have a lot of things that I love to do. My Master’s degree is in College Student Personnel, and that’s what brought me into Hillel in the first place. So I’m looking at continuing to work with college students.” For junior Rachel Kaplan, president of the Jewish Student Union (JSU), the board’s decision was a surprise. As JSU president, she sits on Hillel’s board. “I was surprised,” said Kaplan. “I didn’t see it coming at all, and I was really confused by it…At the same time, I understood that it was a board decision, which I respect, and there had to be some reason for it. I’m still disappointed, because I really like working with Margo.” Like Hamburger-Fox, Kaplan is optimistic about Hillel’s future. “While we’re very disappointed that we’re losing her because she’s a good asset, any change can be good. I’ll be on the search committee to find a replacement, and this is a great opportunity to

think about what direction [Hillel wants] to go in,” said Kaplan. The search committee has met once so far and will continue to meet weekly throughout the semester. “I would want to look for someone like Margo, who is passionate about working with college students, dynamic, energetic, is a good manager, relates well with a variety of people, is a confident and strong presence in working with students, and is passionate about outreach,” said Kaplan. Rabbi Hershey Novack, Director of the University’s chapter of Chabad, the other main Jewish organization on campus, has worked with Hamburger-Fox since Chabad came to campus. “She welcomed us three and a half years ago, and she helped create a collegial, professional relationship,” said Novack. “She’s in a uniquely challenging position. It’s sad to see her go, and I wish her well in the future. I hope that whoever follows her will work to continue that relationship.” During her time at Hillel, Hamburger-Fox has seen programming expand to include a greater variety of students. A greater number of more traditional Jewish students has led to daily minyans (a traditional Jewish morning service). In addition, Keshet, an advocacy group for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered Jews, has become more of a presence on campus. “On any campus it’s a struggle to reach out to as many students as you can,” said Hamburber-Fox. “Students have a lot of things to do, and their Jewish identity might be something that’s there, but they want to do something else. But we’re there for them when they do want to express their Jewish identity…I think just providing a safe space for students is really something that I’ve been proud of and helping students realize that they can express Judaism on their own terms.” This supportive environment is something that senior Maura Linzer, who serves on Hillel’s Student Advisory Board, will remember about Hamburger-Fox’s

See HILLEL, page 2

of an ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The event embodied the original goals of (SPPIF) when the group was begun

last spring. “We wanted to promote inclusive dialogue between

See PALESTINIAN-ISRAELI, page 2

WATTERS WOOS WASH. U.

EITAN HOCHSTER | STUDENT LIFE

Junior Nathan Watters was crowned Mr. Wash. U. last night in Edison Theatre. Senior Edison Hong placed second and senior Pushkar Sharma came in third. Mr. Wash. U. is a fundraiser for City Faces, an after-school art program for inner-city kids. The event hoped to raise $15,000 and ended up bringing in over $21,000.

At yesterday’s Happy Hour, Team 31 Productions announced popular piano rocker Ben Folds as the headliner for this year’s spring WILD. Although WILD is traditionally a Friday evening event, this year it will take place in Brookings Quadrangle on Saturday, Apr. 29 to better accommodate the band’s schedule. To build student enthusiasm for Folds’ Saturday performance, Team 31, CPC, and the Student Programming Board (SPB) are working closely to host additional daytime activities on Friday, Apr. 28 in Bowles Plaza. Opening acts for Ben Folds include Matt Nathanson, The Feed, and a third act to be announced at a later date. Rising singer/songwriter Nathanson made his major label debut in March 2003 with his album “Beneath These Fireworks” and is becoming a fast favorite among fans of John Mayer, Train, Howie Day, OAR, Maroon 5, Guster, and Five for Fighting. St. Louis’ own The Feed is also expanding its fan base, attracting local audiences at venues such as the Pageant and Blueberry Hill with their “blues-infused punk” music. Trying to appeal to as many University students as possible this year, Team 31 Co-Chairs Matt Jones and Jake Greenblatt asked the student body for their artist requests. After receiving over 100 requests for various artists, Ben Folds, known for his unique combination of jazz and rock accompanied by reflective lyrics, was at the top of the list. “The student body was a great resource in helping us recruit a band for WILD. They were able to tell us who is great live and who would appeal to the Wash. U. population,” said Jones. “We are fortuitous enough that Ben and his management wanted to come to St. Louis.” Greenblatt added that Team 31 is thrilled to

be bringing Ben Folds to WILD. Gauging success from overheard student conversations, Greenlatt said that “most people who have already received word are incredibly happy.” After hearing the announcement at yesterday’s Happy Hour, senior Hilary Schwarzenbach is living up to Team 31’s forecasts for a good student reception. “I think [Ben Folds is] appropriate, because, just like all other WILDs, it’s a musical artist from my past reborn on stage at Wash. U.,” said Schwarzenbach. Despite positive reactions from most of the University’s student body, Jones noted that “realistically, not everyone can be satisfied.” Freshman Matt Smith was one of those less enthusiastic to hear that Folds will headline the concert. “I have no respect for [Ben Folds] as an artist,” said Smith. “He relies on a popular image. There are so many alternative artists that would have been a better choice, but I don’t think he has what it takes. He’s got a good stage presence, but musically, he’s not all that great.” Freshman Nate Frogge, although unexcited about Folds’ impending performance, is thrilled about the opening act, Matt Nathanson. “After [Ben Folds] left Ben Folds Five, his independent work has been a little off,” said Frogge. “But I like Matt Nathanson. I saw his concert, and it was the best one I’ve ever been to…he’s going to upstage Ben Folds, definitely.” Admission to WILD is free with a valid Washington University ID. Those with a University ID can purchase an additional guest ticket at the Edison Theatre box office for $20. If you are interested in helping to produce WILD you can visit the Team 31 Web site or e-mail team 31e x t e r n a l r e l a t i o n s @ yahoo.com.

22,000 served: The Writing Center turns 10 By Helen Rhee Staff Reporter

GEORGE GENNIS | STUDENT LIFE

Freshman Rebecca Alpert works to revise an E. Comp. paper with the help of Writing Center tutor Burton Pu on Thursday.

The Writing Center is approaching its 22,000th tutorial appointment as it nears its 10th birthday next week. Starting on Monday, Washington University’s Writing Center will celebrate its fi rst decade of service and its fi rst ever “Writing Center Week,” which coincides with the inaugural International Writing Center Week. The theme for this year’s celebration: “Writers helping writers through the process of revision.” The Washington University Writing Center opened in 1995 and began offering tutorials on the fi fth level of Olin

Library. Since then, the Center has moved to the fi rst floor of Eads. Initially, the Center started off with four tutors, but now it boasts 17 faculty and peer tutors. During the 2004-2005 academic year, 2,385 students made appointments at the Center, and during fall 2005, the Center assisted 1,206 students. “The majority [of our appointments] are with seniors and graduate students,” said Doreen Salli, director of the Writing Center. “Typically, they’re writing the most and take their writing very seriously.”

See WRITING CENTER, page 2


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Copyright 2006 Editor in Chief: Margaret Bauer Associate Editor: Liz Neukirch Managing Editor: David Tabor Senior News Editors: Kristin McGrath, Liz Neukirch Senior Forum Editor: Molly Antos Senior Cadenza Editor: Laura Vilines Senior Scene Editor: Sarah Baicker Senior Sports Editor: Justin Davidson Senior Photo Editor: David Brody News Editors: Mandy Silver, Caroline Wekselbaum Forum Editors: Daniel Milstein, Jeff Stepp, Matt Shapiro, Joshua Trein Cadenza Editors: Adam Summerville, Jordan Deam, Robbie Gross Scene Editors: Sarah Klein, Erin Fults Sports Editor:Joe Ciolli Photo Editors: David Hartstein, Pam Buzzetta, Meghan Luecke Online Editor: Dan Daranciang Design Chief: Laura McLean Copy Editors: Allie McKay, Nina Perlman, Kelly Donahue, Erin Fults, Rebecca Emshwiller, hannah draper, Julian Beattie, Mallory Wilder, Paige Creo Designers: Ellen Lo, Anna Dinndorf, Jamie Reed, Andy Gavinski, Elizabeth Kaufman, Kate Ehrlich General Manager: Andrew O’Dell Advertising Manager: Sara Judd Copyright 2006 Washington University Student Media, Inc. (WUSMI). Student Life is the financially and editorially independent, student-run newspaper serving the Washington University community. First copy of each publication is free; all additional copies are 50 cents. Subscriptions may be purchased for $80.00 by calling (314) 935-6713. Student Life is a publication of WUSMI and does not necessarily represent, in whole or in part, the views of the Washington University administration, faculty or students. All Student Life articles, photos and graphics are the property of WUSMI and may not be reproduced or published without the express written consent of the General Manager. Pictures and graphics printed in Student Life are available for purchase; e-mail editor@ studlife.com for more information. Student Life reserves the right to edit all submissions for style, grammar, length and accuracy. The intent of submissions will not be altered. Student Life reserves the right not to publish all submissions. If you’d like to place an ad, please contact the Advertising Department at (314) 935-6713. If you wish to report an error or request a clarification, e-mail editor@studlife.com.

WRITING CENTER v FROM PAGE 1

PALESTINIAN-ISRAELI v FROM PAGE 1

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EITAN HOCHSTER | STUDENT LIFE

Israeli Eliana Avitzour (L) and Palestinian Lama Tarayrah pose for a shot by the advertisement for their talk. The pair spoke about their experiences of growing up on opposite sides of Jerusalem and living through the violence of the current Palestinian-Israeli conflict. different sides of the conficlt [between Israelis and Palestinans],” said Aviva Joffe, acting president of SPPIF. “Often people avoid hard questions, and we wanted to face those and have more common ground between people with different views and to broaden people’s perspectives.” Tarayrah and Avitzour had attended a two-week session at a summer camp called Building Bridges for Peace, where Israeli, Palestinian and American girls join together for peace-building activities. Although their societies define them as enemies, Avitzour and Tarayrah have become best friends. Every summer, they said, the girls are able to bond at camp and discover a hope for the future. It was while working at this camp last summer that Joffe got the idea for the event. Tarayrah and Avitzour, who had attended the camp as teenagers, were now working as Joffe’s cocounselors. “I knew [Tarayrah and Avitzour] would be in the states in February, so I decided to see if they could come to Wash. U.,” said Joffe. “So the program came

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into being because I worked at this camp, and I wanted them to speak about their lives. Tarayrah began the dialogue by reflecting on her life as a Palestinian from Eastern Jerusalem. She was born in the winter of 1986 and grew up with long curfews, constant blasts of deafening gunshots and the smell of choking tear gas. Political debate surrounded her every action. “Everything was about what we should do better to cause [the Israelis] more pain than they have caused us,” said Tarayrah. Despite the fact that a solution seemed far away, her involvement in the camp has changed her life. One event in particular helped her realize how crucial the camp would be for her new path in life. At the end of her first summer, she partnered with an Israeli girl, and they were instructed to touch each others’ hearts. “I felt like she was becoming part of me and I was becoming part of her. We both discovered we were more similar than we ever thought. I don’t want to hate anymore, I just want to live,” said Tarayrah. Avitzour picked up the

FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

discussion by speaking just as openly about her life as an Israeli in Jerusalem. She grew up with a distinct fear of Arabs and would cross the street and walk faster upon seeing them. Avitzour, likewise, explained how attending the camp was a life-altering experience. “I realized that I didn’t know everything about the world. I wanted to start acting for peace and stayed involved with the program,” said Avitzour. Avitzour chose not to join the army, an act that disappointed many of her friends and family. Instead, she is now involved with national service. She often second-guesses her choice not to join the army, but the recurring terrorist attacks in Israel reassure her that she made the right decision. “I don’t know what’s right a lot of times, but for me I know that this is right,” said Avitzour. The audience was warmly receptive to the women and participated actively in the question-and-answer session that concluded the event. The recent Palestinian election and Hamas’ victory were quickly raised, and Tarayrah presented a unique view to the University’s students. “Palestinians have not had the chance to exist as a nation,” said Tarayrah. They have always been under Fatah. This was the only way for it to change, and at least it was a change.” The elections have only served to increase hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians, yet Tarayrah and Avitzour remain close friends and are able to communicate their distinct opinions. As is said at the camp, Their summers have helped them understand a phrase often spoken at the camp: “If you want to try life, you have to try it from all sides.”

On Thursday, the Writing Center will host an open house for all students interested in learning more about the opportunities and services available to them there. The Center currently offers tutorials and a series of workshops for students. According to Salli, the most popular workshop from last semester was “Writing a Rhetorical Analysis,” which will be offered again this semester. “Those workshops are designed to give writers some background on how to begin a particular writing” said Salli. The Center also offers services to faculty who need help devising writing assignments for their students. The tutors consist of adjunct writing instructors, graduate students and undergraduates. The Center offers undergraduate students the opportunity to work as peer tutors following a nomination by their professor and completion of the course E. Comp. 328: Seminar on the Theory and Practice of Tutoring Writing. Salli added that the Writing Center not only offers tutorials on English papers, but also provides writing services for all subjects ranging from technical writing to personal statements. “It doesn’t have to be for a writing class,” said Salli. “It might be paper for a biology class or a psychology class. It

might be a poem. We love to see creative writing here as well. We work with any kind of writing in progress. We help at any stage of the draft.” Salli pointed out, however, that the Writing Center does not fi x all grammatical errors or proofread papers. Rather, the tutors help point out the grammatical errors to the students, so that students can learn to identify errors and correct them for themselves in the future. “The perception is that the Writing Center is for students who are struggling, but the writers who use our service come from a variety of writing backgrounds,” said Salli. “Some are beginning writers, but many are strong, experienced writers, highly motivated students who know that every writer can benefit from having a reader.” The Writing Center is equally beneficial to the tutors, said Seema Kanwar, a recent graduate of the University and administrative assistant and graduate tutor at the Writing Center. “I really enjoyed my time as a tutor,” said Kanwar. “It was one of the most fulfi lling experiences at Wash. U. Basically, every writer, whether they are struggling or already really good, can benefit from the feedback, because even our professors don’t send out publication without having someone read the paper.”

HILLEL v FROM PAGE 1 involvement with Hillel. “Margo has done a lot to make Hillel a warm and inclusive environment that meets the changing needs of students,” said Linzer. “She’s always reached out to make students welcome, and there’s been individualized programming so that students can find out what they’re looking for in Hillel.” Over the past year, Linzer’s personal interactions with Hamburger-Fox helped her decide to pursue a career in Hillel. “Earlier in the semester when I was trying to decide on a career path, she literally took hours out of her schedule to discuss my future and was up-front about

the responsibilities and realities of Hillel,” said Linzer. “She made me want to do this for a living.” Hamburger-Fox reported that working with college students has been one of the most enjoyable aspects of her position with Hillel. “One of the things that’s been really rewarding for me is to watch and participate in the students’ growth professionally and as leaders and to see them continuing on either working in the Jewish community or volunteering in the Jewish community,” said Hamburger-Fox. “Being able to participate in the process…has been wonderful. I’ve learned so much from students here.”

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Senior Scene Editor / Sarah Baicker / scene@studlife.com

FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

STUDENT LIFE | SCENE

3

SCENE

Paper or plastic—or Postcard from Abroad both? RecycleMania Lo n d o n sweeps campus. By Laura Geggel Writer at Large

By Erin Fults

Scene Special Features Editor Tin cans have been showing up all over campus, but it’s not a littering problem. The can displays, taking the shape of aluminum people, are quite the opposite and are representatives of RecycleMania. RecycleMania is a 10-week recycling competition among college recycling programs across the nation spanning the weeks from Jan. 29 to Apr. 8. This year, there are 93 colleges and universities from 33 states competing. Universities compete for the largest amount of recyclables collected, least amount of trash and overall highest recycling rate. This is Washington University’s fourth year participating in the competition, and a year in which representatives desire improvement. Natalie Zaczek, president of Green Action, pointed out that Wash. U. has always lost. “We’re hoping that we don’t take last place this year,” she said. With a new year and a new hope for doing better in the competition also come new campus recycling regulations. “A big problem in the past was that there was a lot of contamination in the recycling bins and the rules weren’t well known by students,” said Zaczek. “This year, with a new recycling vendor, the campus has expanded what can be recycled. We want students to realize that, hey, you can recycle a lot.” The newly adopted recyclables include plastics 1-7, caps on plastic bottles, paperboard (but not cardboard) and basically anything that tears, including paper with staples in it, so stu-

MEGHAN LUECKE | STUDENT LIFE

These can people in Mallinckrodt were built by Green Action to encourage participation in RecycleMania, a 10-week recycling competition. The University has placed last in this competition for the past three years. dents no longer need to painstakingly remove staples in order to help out the environment. The can displays around campus have been an effort to inform students and encourage them to more actively participate in the mania. “We hope that this year students are more aware and more enthusiastic about what we’ve been doing,” said Green Action member Alona Banai. After one week of the competition, Wash. U. is already showing improvement. In the first week recorded, Wash. U. recycled 1.41 lbs/person, up from last year’s average of .5 lbs/person/week. As of Feb. 2, Wash.

U. had recycled 4,822 pounds of paper and 4,880 pounds of comingle material. While those numbers represent definite progress, Wash. U. still has tough competitors. According to the RecycleMania Web site, last year’s winner, Miami University, recycled an average 66.19 pounds per student to Wash. U.’s 4.39 pounds per student. “We hope that students find the displays inspiring,” said Zaczek. “I want us to do better this year, and I know we will.” Progress of Wash. U. and all other participants can be followed on the RecycleMania Web site at www.recyclemaniacs.org.

MARGARET BAUER | STUDENT LIFE

These can-and-bottle people were also placed on a bench outside of the Hilltop Bakery by Green Action.

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COURTESY OF LAURA GEGGEL | STUDENT LIFE

Our esteemed former News editor Laura Geggel looks excited to be standing on a genuine London streetcorner. Though we certainly miss her here at the paper, it appears that she’s having fun. an essay on the topic. Plus, almost all of the classes are year-long, which means that I’m jumping in at the halfway point and expected to transition into a time period about which I know nearly nothing. Everyone has been very friendly, at least. The other students are more than willing to help me understand concepts and a professor, when I ran into him at the library, even helped me find the books I needed for his class. In an effort to meet more Brits, I recently started reporting for the news department at Pi, the Student Union magazine. It’s hilarious; they have their news meetings at a pub! I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised, though, since I just joined the ultimate Frisbee club here, and when I asked what practice would be like on Saturday, the student coach said, “Well, we practice for maybe two hours and then play games until dusk. Next’s the pub. You coming?” And I almost laughed. As if I could play Ultimate Frisbee all day! I would be one quivering lump of exhaustion. I skipped practice one

day last week and went running in Hyde Park with a friend instead so we could work on our endurance. It turned out really not to be the brightest idea with the chilly wind blowing in our faces and the gray clouds threatening a downpour. We ended up having more fun watching the mallards, swan and loons compete for bread crumbs on the Serpentine. I’m still making adjustments, like remembering that unlike Olin, the library at UCL isn’t open at all hours and you can’t even check out books after certain times or on Sundays. And the cafés and stores close here alarmingly early, forcing you to root out the better local haunts that have later curfews. But with the menagerie of accents ranging from the countries of Afghanistan and Italy to Ireland and Germany, London challenges you to plunge into its labyrinth of backstreets and a neverending list of museums and landmarks to mingle with people from all over the world.

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FREE TAN

I’ve now lived in London a little over a month, which means that I no longer flinch when minis and black cabs come careening at me from the left side of the road. But studying for six months at University College London is amazing. It’s right in the middle of the city, a 15-minute walk to The British Museum, where I hang out on Thursdays getting free tours, and 20 minutes to Leicester Square, an excellent sprawling maze of theatres where I can splurge all my money on plays and musicals. Taking the Tube is convenient but expensive, and with busses clogging up the congested streets, sometimes it’s just easier to walk. It’s so odd the things that make you feel American. Like passing someone on the right when you’re walking past them. Here they tend to pass you on the left. It’s such a little thing, but I’ve already done several dance steps with people—you know, when you’re walking toward someone and you step right and so do they, and then you try left and there they are! Luckily I’ve been getting an excess of walking and map reading experience just by exploring the city. Camden Town, a huge expanse of flea markets, really has been one of my favorite places so far. I went there with some friends (and learned how to count to 10 in German—that’s the upside of hanging out with non-American people). Toward the end of the day all I wanted to find was a chair, but the others were happily wandering in and out of stalls and markets and little holes in the wall. The place is packed with good deals and imitation brands that you didn’t know existed, but find hard to ignore. Classes at University College London are much more independent than I expected. Here, students enroll in only one or two subjects and take all their coursework in those areas. Each syllabus is around 30 pages and crammed with lists of recommended reading for each lecture. Most students choose only to read the required reading unless they’re writing


4 STUDENT LIFE | FORUM

Senior Forum Editor / Molly Antos / forum@studlife.com

FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

Our daily Forum editors:

FORUM

Monday: Jeff Stepp jsstepp@wustl.edu

Wednesday: Daniel Milstein daniel.milstein@wustl.edu

Friday: Joshua Trein jctrein@wustl.edu

To ensure that we have time to fully evaluate your submissions, guest columns should be e-mailed to the next issue’s editor or forwarded to forum@studlife.com by no later than 5 p.m. two days before publication. Late pieces will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. We welcome your submissions, and thank you for your consideration.

STAFF EDITORIAL

Senior Class Gift fundraising raises questions E

very year, the senior class presents a class gift to the University on its way out the door, often in the form of a scholarship. Such a tradition is fairly common, and provides a way for students to give a little something to the school that has given them so much (at least until the phone calls from the Alumni Association begin). Though a senior class gift is of course worthwhile, and the efforts of those involved with organizing and planning the gift are certainly commendable, the way in which the funds are raised for this gift are worth a closer

look. One main way that those in charge of the senior class gift have been approaching seniors for money is suggesting that they donate whatever’s left of the $200 deposit made by each student (or, more likely, their parents) at the beginning of freshman year, claiming that it’s almost like “free money.” This tactic has also been used off campus, such as at senior events at Blue Hill, perhaps with the hope that alcohol will lower inhibitions about giving away “free money” (and perhaps also to increase the appeal of the “free” t-shirt that comes with a donation).

In addition to the ethical problems this tactic engenders, it also raises the issue of fi nancial short-sightedness. Though many students at the University are quite well-off fi nancially, the $200 that students are being asked to just sign over could be a loan payment for a student on fi nancial aid or used towards a significant portion of books for a semester. The whole idea smacks of the fi nancial elitism that University students are regularly accused of, and also seems inconsiderate to those for whom this $200 may be very important. Also, presumably parents

plenty of well-to-do individuals, hopefully the class gift could be put together without resorting to exploiting this quirk in the way the school’s fi nances are set up. There is certainly nothing wrong with the senior class goal of adding another scholarship to help students deal with the University’s increasingly strenuous fi nancial demands, and it would be worthwhile for seniors who have the means to help donate to the future scholarship fund of the class of 2006. But as important as properly funding this gift is, it is equally important to look out for the interests of

with the means to donate money to charity or other funds do so on their own, to organizations that they choose. Deciding that their money should go to something they won’t even fi nd out about is disingenuous; at the very least, parents should at least have to agree that the extra money go to the scholarship, rather than being kept in the dark about it completely. Furthermore, the gift seems to lose something when it moves from being a gift of the senior class to being a gift funded by money that the parents of seniors presumably forgot about. As we are a school with

Secularize Diwali

JOHNNY CHANG | EDITORIAL CARTOON

By Satyam Khanna Op-ed Submission

J

P

struggles to find meaning behind the subsequent violence, and in the responses to it. People have died over a cartoon, yet the issue has been broken down into two easily digested sides: is this an issue of freedom of expression, or of the right of a religion to be accorded respect for its laws? Perhaps the answer is not so simple. Perhaps the news coverage I reference portrays the very thing the Danish paper set out to explore: an inability to talk straight about “Muslim issues.” An integral question is precisely what a “Muslim issue” might consist of, but the answer depends on whom one consults. Responses can vary from “sources misconstruing the Islamic religion and good faith attempts to correct such errors,” all the way to “anything that Muslims who hate the West can use to go off the deep end.”

ust before the curtain closes on the Diwali show, over 200 jovial participants ranging from white to brown to black, from Christian to Buddhist to Hindu, stand on stage to thunderous applause. Through an amazing three-hour production the Indian students association, Ashoka, annually brings Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, to our University community. The show prides itself on its diversity, citing the wide array of non-South Asians that partake, as well as the variety of audience members. The growth of Diwali’s popularity took several years of planning and organization, each show building upon the foundations laid in previous years. It is important that the student body both preserve our traditions and continually expand them. The foundations student group or event founders lay eventually manifest themselves into a strong network of traditions, providing the base from which new practices evolve. A well-placed tradition offers a default to which people can compare their ideas and achievements. The stronger this tradition, the more confidence students develop about their own decisions. As the tradition matures over the years, the need to question the existing establishment diminishes, and instead what remains is emphasis upon innovation as opposed to reexamination. A nucleus of traditions is crucial, because without it there would be too small of an establishment for work to be done and for new members to get involved. As a result, few would desire to tack extracurriculars onto an already heavy workload, resulting in a more insular and stagnant student body. With fewer avenues for student activism and extracurricular engagement, school pride and the overall strength

of the institution would be threatened. Traditions on the college campus appeal to students but, as is the case with the Ashoka’s production, also appeal to the general public. Impressed by the lavish costumes and intricate dance steps, many of the same audience members return year after year for Ashoka’s show for more of the same. Subsequently, the show must attend to audience desires, resulting in the performance being essentially the same from one year to the next. With little incentive to alter fundamentals such as participant demographics or the theme of the show, the organizers instead desire to embellish existing foundations. This is done, for example, by adding an opulent fireworks display or increasingly expensive costumes. But why is there such a strong emphasis today on maintaining traditions in student groups as opposed to a system that stresses growth over time? Ashoka’s current Diwali show could be greatly improved by molding it into a secular show and moving away from a title with religious connotations. A secular show would not give weight to any particular religion or creed, but would instead emphasize South Asian culture. This secular show would provide a more effective medium to expose different facets of South Asian culture. Whereas last year’s show organizers strengthened the show by elaborating on existing traditions through a fireworks display and even more samosa sales, a secular show would bring greater insight into the heterogeneity of South Asian culture. If, for instance, Islamic dances were introduced, then audience members would be enlightened to the fact that not only do Muslims comprise an integral part of South Asian culture, but also to the distinctiveness of Muslim customs, customs that the current show does not exhibit. In such a secular production,

“A secular show would not give weight to any particular religion or creed, but would instead emphasize South Asian culture.”

Dying over a cartoon: the need to confront religious fanaticism lease note: first, my a large segment of extremfacts come from ist Muslims into a frenzy. recent reports posted Protestors have already lost on CNN.com. Second, their lives during attacks I admit my meager underon the Danish consulates in standing of the Islamic faith England, Syria and Lebanon, up front. Should I get a detail of which the latter two were or two wrong, I ask you to set ablaze. In Rome, a dislook to my main cussion has begun point as the intent of over how much extra this piece. security to assign In September the Danish athletes 2005, the Danish to protect them from newspaper Jyllandsa potential MunichPosten ran a story like statement of on a book about the violence. Worse, this life of the Islamic isn’t likely to be all prophet MohamJoshua Trein the negative fallout med, accompanying that results from it with a collection this event. How the of caricatures. Under Sharia hell did it come to this? law, which is partially comAn ironic wrinkle is that posed of divine rules drawn the original compilation from the Islamic holy book, of Mohammed caricatures no depictions of the prophet was to force discussion of Mohammed are allowed. This the soft-pedaling of Muslim law, combined with the fact issues in Denmark newspathat one of the caricatures pers. Yet even if the original featured Mohammed wearing intent had been to inflame a bomb as a turban, has set Muslim sentiment, one

students and their parents by raising the money in an appropriate fashion. Though getting drunk seniors to sign away $200 might be the easiest way to gather money, it is certainly not the most ethical or honest way to go about it. The gift is worthwhile in and of itself; hopefully, that should be enough to drive a successful project forward, rather than appealing to the inebriated. What’s unfortunate is that the senior class gift committee is doing so much good work otherwise, and hopefully in the future, that good work won’t be overshadowed by questionable fundraising techniques.

Jihad Momeni, the editor of a Jordanian newspaper who decided to print the caricatures, presciently asked, “Who offends Islam more? A foreigner who endeavors to draw the prophet as described by his followers in the world, or a Muslim with an explosive belt who commits suicide in a wedding party in Amman or elsewhere?” Not everyone has been so even-handed. In a misguided attempt to debate freedom of speech, a French paper reprinted the cartoons under the headline “Yes, one has the right to caricature God.” There seems to be no sane responses from the larger world, only countries making apologies for hurting the feelings of the worldwide Muslim community. In a move that highlights the world media’s inability to take sides on this issue, an

See CARTOON, page 5

See DIWALI, page 5

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FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

STUDENT LIFE | FORUM

5

Saving the world, Hasselhoffians for the one friend at a time Defense of Hairiness By Robby Boyer Op-ed Submission

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love being an American. I confess: I am a proud and happy citizen of the United States of America. It’s hard to deny that living in the U.S. comes with an array of perks, particularly for a white male with a university education. As far as privilege is concerned, it doesn’t get much better for me. Among other luxuries, economic stability, access to higher education, advanced health care, sanitation, an ample supply of fresh water (Oh yeah, I live near a great lake, too), grace my purple mountains and amber waves of grain. I write to those of you at Wash. U. who feel you share this privilege in any way. The privilege inherent in being an educated U.S. citizen bears an overwhelming burden. Coming from the most wealthy, globally influential nation, you and I have a unique opportunity to inspire great things in this country and around the world. Simultaneously, we have the opportunity to evoke equally unprecedented evil. While there are many privileged, highly educated Americans who claim to know the difference between

“great” and “evil,” I can assure you of only one fact: they do not. Politicians, ambassadors, scholars and even Bono himself can claim to represent the goodwill of the world, but if elections are any indication of “national consensus,” I need not argue much further to demonstrate that people in different places understand the world in different ways. How, then, as privileged citizens of the United States, can we possibly ensure that our actions here and abroad are, in fact, “good?” After hours and hours of meditation, I believe I’ve found the panacea. You ready for this one? Friendship. That’s it. Get off your butt and make some friends. At Washington University, you have the opportunity— the privilege—to escape a bubble of theory and abstraction by studying abroad and meeting real “other” people. If your major inhibits you from doing so, change your major. But if you must stay on campus every semester, try and make use of the diverse international community St. Louis has to offer. I honestly believe you and I can bring peace to this conflict-ridden world by simply (and enjoyably) making friends with people from

different cultures. We cannot rely on our elected officials to do it. As hard as they try to do the right thing, their abstract policies cannot appease the rich human diversity on this planet. Sadly, in trying to appease as many people at once, their policies can lead to confusion, anger, or in the worst case, war. By befriending “the other” and learning to appreciate their “otherness” as a friend rather than an agenda-burdened diplomat or missionary, I believe we are much more inclined to prevent policies that lead to their detriment. We can read the newspaper and books on anthropology and foreign policy, but friendship cannot be achieved from a book or the Internet. It is through true, face-to-face conversation between individuals, not institutions, that peace must be achieved. So please, if you have the luxury to spend time befriending people in a foreign country, or even a different region of your own country, take the initiative to inspire some good in this complex world. Robby is a senior in Arts & Sciences. He can be reached via email at rboyer@wustl.edu.

By John Bogovic and David Freeman Op-ed Submission

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e are shocked and appalled at the insinuations levied against hirsute men on the Washington University campus in HeeEun Kang’s “Being single isn’t actually that bad” (Student Life, Feb. 3, 2006). Let us begin with a disclaimer: we missed the central point of the article. To continue: among other negative attributes not found in a perfect, hypothetical male interest, Ms. Kang includes “too hairy” as a datum on this list. Consternation abounds! We are stalwart in our disdain for such an indictment against our pelts. We are Hasselhoffians for the Defense of Hairiness. First, the perfect man is a myth. He is an idealistic byproduct of too many romance novels and Cosmo quizzes, and unfortunately, he is not resident on this planet. The real man has the advantage of existing, and of hair. This is epitomized in our eponymous leader, David Hasselhoff, who brazenly bears his flocculent chest for the world to gaze upon and fear. In stark contrast, the equally recognizable Fabio also displays his disturbingly smooth torso, often on the covers of aforementioned romance novels. We are at war against this standard of prettiness typified in

Fabio. Although he is shorn, he is still a brother-of-hair at heart, as demonstrated by his coping mechanism: that luscious lion’s mane. Yet not all of us can hope to achieve such leonine splendor for our heads, and therefore we cannot be made to part with our follicular armor. Within every waxed and shaved man, a lost sheep is bleating. For just as sheep are raped of their wool, in an equal injustice are college men pilfered of their

“Society shall have no claim to the coiffures of our chests, and we shall concede marginally concerning the hairs on our chinny chin chins.” fleece. There exist in this country, and on this very campus, hairless aberrations who are not as nature made them. Due to unrealistic and draconian standards of beauty, these pitiful souls are amenable to aesthetic suggestion. They are convinced by biased sources that their beauty and their hair are separate. Their hair

Let us not forget past struggles To follow up on Erin Robinson’s letter to the editor last week highlighting the importance of Wash .U.’s cultural shows, I would like to say that this weekend’s Black Anthology 2006, under the direction of Andrea Newsome, was the best cultural production I have seen in my four years here. Everyone who was not there really missed something amazing. The acting was full of emotion, but was also genuine and convincing. The dialogue was realistic, authentic and uncontrived. The story was intricate and beautiful, and the mosaic of songs and dance complemented, rather that interrupted, the story. “Lest We Forget” juxtaposes a university of the ‘60s and ‘70s with a university of the present day, as a daughter learns of her late mother’s struggle to promote racial equality within the university she attended. I would advise anyone who was moved by this production to pick up Jonathan Kozol’s reader-friendly book “The Shame of the Nation” before his Feb. 22 visit to our campus. I have been introduced to this book in Professor Rebecca Rogers’ enlightening class on literacy education as a human right. Kozol describes the current condition of American public education as follows: “Schools that were already deeply segregated 25 or 30 years ago...are no less segregated now, while thousands of other schools that had been integrated...have since been rapidly resegregating both in northern districts and in broad expanses of the South” (Kozol, 2005, p.18). It is time for us to not only not forget the struggles of the past, but also not ignore the racial inequalities in schools today. It is also time for me and my fellow seniors to stop and thank those professors and peers at Wash. U. who have introduced us to such realities, who have turned our misconceptions of the world into “pudding,” as Cornel West described it, and who have allowed us to “learn... how to die” so that we can go on to live in a world that we will try to make more just (Student Life, Feb. 3). Pudding never tasted so good. -Christina Elefteriades Class of 2006

Regarding women in ‘Ipi Zombi?’ Dear Editor: Last Friday Student Life ran an article in the forum section that accused “Ipi Zombie” of not taking the appropriate time in the play to approach women’s issues. The article specifically noted the fact that women are witches and, hence, violence against witches is also violence against women. I couldn’t agree more. What I write about today is not to continue to badger the sexist pigs that are the crew of “Ipi Zombi?”, but rather to bring up further discussion in the realm of things that do not deal with women’s issues and women’s rights. For instance, I recently read “Fear and Loathing in Lost Vegas” by Hunter Thompson. Everyone has probably seen the movie and I decided to give the book a try. I was appalled, however, when not a single page in the book directly dealt with women’s issues and women’s rights. If Hunter Thompson were alive I would spit on him and then set him ablaze. Yesterday I watched an episode of The Simpsons. Get this: again, not one single women’s issue was discussed. The New York Times front page yesterday didn’t address women’s issues. I’ve even seen other plays that don’t address women’s issues. I mean, “Ipi Zombi?” is only the tip of the iceberg. “Damn Yankees,” “Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus,” “Cats,” “Chicago” and even “Peter Pan” fall woefully short of addressing women’s issues. I am not saying this in jest. The crew of “Ipi Zombi?” is most certainly chauvinist. I have personally seen one of the actors backhand a freshman for not making him a sandwich fast enough. Then he called her inappropriate names and hit her again. My point is that there should be absolutely NOTHING that does not specifically address women’s issues. Sure, it is true that historically witches were women, and that wasn’t the director’s fault. Sure, the play addressed numerous racial and sociological issues of fairly large importance. But that still doesn’t excuse them. I, for one, will be starting a boycott of any piece of literature, media, film, theater, and art that does not specifically address

women’s issues. Eventually we will have a world where the only message is that of improving women’s rights and remembering the hard past of females. I realize that for the author of that article this is a little bit more important, being a rich female in a powerful country where she can vote and receive the best education available, but I feel like my support is needed as well. Join us, sisters—the fight may take us a while but if we stand strong, I’m sure we can win. -Jeremy Carroll Class of 2008

Some Center Court clarification Dear Editor: Re: the Feb. 6 issue: 1. The “Center Court worker” on the front page has a name: it’s Janet. I just thought maybe she deserved to be mentioned in less general terms; I doubt she gets the appreciation she deserves as it is. 2. I think there’s a typo in the entrepreneurship article. Paragraph four, word nine—I think the “a” should be an “e.” I wouldn’t correct typos, but it is a quote, after all… 3. Back to CC (as my friend and I call Center Court). Who is Bon Appétit getting feedback from? If they’re asking people who attend CC why people aren’t attending CC, isn’t that kind of a contradiction? The people who attend may attend regardless, so why ask them their opinions? It doesn’t seem a surprise to me that attendance has not improved through this method. The survey cards should be in everyplace but CC and ask people why they chose the other establishment over CC. Also, is it so terrible that it doesn’t see the staggering attendance that might be expected of an all-you-cangorge-on experience? When I look around campus I see very few, if any, people with a serious weight problem. I think the low attendance might be a good sign, as long as they can stay open for people like me who occasionally enjoy getting their money’s worth on campus. I’m a huge fan of Center Court, so I refuse to release any well-founded remarks that may hinder attendance—but the article does make me wonder about the

John and David are seniors. John can be reached via email at jab4@ wustl.edu. David can be reached via e-mail at dmfl@wustl.edu.

CARTOON v FROM PAGE 4

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Dear Editor:

is not sexy; thus a drastic change must occur. The only avenues open to them are the torturous ordeals of shaving and waxing. No longer can such machinations be accepted, or be allowed to continue. We consider our voice the call of the wild: a cry for a return to nature. Atavism with a compromise. Society shall have no claim to the coiffures of our chests, and we shall concede marginally concerning the hairs on our chinny chin chins. While we will present our shorn faces for cultural etiquette and protocol, in our homes we will live in the bewhiskered animal nature we were born into. We do not espouse a double standard. Our sisters are welcomed and urged to gather under our banner. Our deity is Hair Itself, and its beauty has numerous forms. From the cottontail of every bunny rabbit to the whiskers of every walrus, its hymn is sung. Hear the lyrics: eschew not those who choose to embrace their natural beauty. To misquote the Bard, “Hair is nor hand, nor foot, nor arm, nor face, but the most important part belonging to a man.” And so we stand with our hairy brethren, some of whom could use a trim.

future of CC and I would like an update in another issue. For people who think CC is unhealthy, they have an entire section devoted to vegetarian food, and no one is cattle-prodding you to force down that last plate of food...take a banana with you if you don’t think you got a good enough value for your eight points. The people I’ve spoken to who do not actually attend Center Court give me these reasons: “It takes too much time out of the day,” which is true yet unavoidable. “I just don’t want to feel compelled to over-eat”: this to me is a great statement and a good reason not to attend. It has nothing to do with the location not providing quality food, or not being a bargain, it has to do with someone making a good health choice. -Greg Galloway Class of 2008

Cartoonists, take heed Dear Editor: I would simply like to draw your attention to the worldwide protests of Muslims due to the publication of highly offensive political cartoons in poor taste. Last year, Student Life published a political cartoon mocking Catholics and Christians on Ash Wednesday. Though little came of it besides a few angry letters to the editor, I would remind this newspaper that religiously offensive statements or even cartoons are rarely taken lightly. -Claire Farnsworth Class of 2005 Editor’s Note: The cartoon in question (Editorial Cartoon, Feb. 2, 2005) was not intended to mock Catholics or Christians—its purpose was to use the iconography of Ash Wednesday to shed light on the perceived religious agenda behind President Bush’s domestic policy (an agenda shared by “moral values Republicans”). That said, as you point out, many readers found it difficult to see past the cartoonist’s use of religious iconography in making a political point. All editorial cartoonists would do well to note the impact that cartoons dealing with religion can have at home and abroad.

Treasury’s actions were justified in Kozol funding issue Dear Editor: This is a response to the Feb. 6 article written by James Wang: James Wang said it himself, “To assume we would spend our entire budget on one event is unreasonable.” This is EXACTLY why Treasury would not fund Jonathon Kozol. I am not a member of Treasury but I attend the meetings on a fairly regular basis. This is more than I can say for Mr. Wang. I was there when the Treasury talked about their new approach for allocating the remaining money in the appeals account this semester. If Mr. Wang had done his homework, he could have learned about the new criteria, which are, in fact, very admirable. The criteria justify why Treasury did not fund Mr. Kozol. If Treasury had indeed funded the speaker last Tuesday, it would have wiped out all the remaining funds being allocated for the month of February. Not only that, but a few student groups who received money that night would not have been able to receive funding for their budgets, let alone speakers. Wang also wrote, “SU has acted as a barrier to the success of many campus groups.” Treasury did the opposite that night by refusing to fund Kozol, because there is no way a few other groups could have been successful had they not been able to receive money for their budgets because it was given away to a speaker. The fact of the matter is, Kozol’s contract was already signed. Whether or not Treasury gave ArtSci Council money, Kozol would be coming to campus. As a result, Treasury had two choices: give $12,500 to one group to use on a two-hour speaker, or give that money to three other groups for their semester’s budget? Hrmm, that’s a tough one! I’d suggest that before anyone open their mouth about how stingy or selfish Treasury is, they should take the time to try to comprehend a simple economics problem: help one group or three groups? Treasury isn’t the villain here. They are just simply trying to accommodate as many SU groups’ interests as possible for the benefit of the entire campus. -Jessica Wasserman External VP, Class of 2009

Iranian paper has called for caricatures of the Holocaust. The editor asked, “Does the West extend freedom of expression to the crimes committed by the United States and Israel, or an event such as the Holocaust? Or is its freedom only for insulting religious sanctities?” If everyone takes sides except the sane among us, there will never be an end to this unbelievable idiocy. As Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “We shall have to repent in this generation not merely for the vitriolic words and actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence of the good people.” This is not about smearing the name of Islam—this is about retaining human dignity in the face of zealotry of any kind. My beliefs are not worth your life, nor are yours worth mine. Why is that so difficult to understand? In an attempt to stem the flow of “Student Life hates Islam” letters I expect to read over the next few days, let me say this: I do not care what religion anyone is, nor what individuals do with their lives. But I will not refrain from passing judgment on thousands of people who are taking a battle of ideas and using it as the impetus to cause widespread death and destruction. At least in the past men had the decency to line up in rows and look at those they were about to murder. Now all we get is a pit in our stomachs that reminds us we could wind up dead riding the bus. Joshua is a senior in Arts & Sciences and a Forum editor. He can be reached via e-mail at forum@ studlife.com.

DIWALI v FROM PAGE 4 the focus would be shifted from highlighting a particular religious holiday to celebrating South Asian culture through new dances as well as through raising awareness of the societal differences that pervade South Asian culture. Ashoka should follow the lead of their peers in the Chinese Students Association, whose Lunar New Year Festival has proved to be more culturally inclusive than the formerly titled Chinese New Year Festival. The Diwali show has propagated traditions that give unfair preference to members of the Hindu religion and do not emphasize religious or cultural openness. Veiled by the fanfare of Bhangra dancing, the lengthy skit, and the rainbow of costumes, the Diwali show obscures the reality that several distinct minorities comprise South Asian culture. The traditions that have been carved from over a decade of work now assert divisiveness rather than tolerance, insularity rather than open-mindedness. As members of the audience, participants in the show, and organizers of the production, are these the sorts of narrow traditions we want to help solidify? Unless conscious action is taken, these traditions will continue to limit the scope of our interests. Satyam is a senior in Arts & Sciences. He is a four-year Diwali participant and served on the Ashoka executive board in 2003 and 2005. He can be reached via e-mail at khanna@wustl.edu.


6 STUDENT LIFE | SPORTS

Senior Sports Editor / Justin Davidson / sports@studlife.com

FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

Not-so-Super Bowl Sunday One of the first things I said to one of my best friends the day after the Super Bowl was—and mind you, this is my best guy friend, with whom I usually discuss sports—“How incredible was that episode of ‘Gray’s Anatomy’ last night?” And that’s when I realized there was something very wrong and un-super about this year’s Super Sunday. My reservations about it arose when I found no pizza and only two buffalo wings left at the party in the lobby of my dorm. Even worse, the two remaining wings were barbeque. You can only imagine my disappointment. It wasn’t until my friend’s suitemate went to Schnucks to buy us some real wings (the hot ones) and I had a beer in my hand that it started to feel like the

right environment for the Super Bowl. And then the game started… It wasn’t just the slow first quarter—which is always slow—it was the whole game. There was so little excitement. Sometimes that can be attributed to not being a fullfledged fan of either of the teams playing, but then again, I’ve been excited by past Super Bowls and I wasn’t quite born yet the last time my Chicago Bears were in it. And while I wasn’t a true Steelers fan, I was legitimately and whole-heartedly rooting for them for various reasons, even though in the end I didn’t really care that they won. Sure, I felt good to know that my uncle and his family were somewhere joyously celebrating and truly happy. And I was

Allie Wieczorek thrilled that Jerome Bettis finally got the trophy he’s been long awaiting and long deserving. But the man only rushed all of, what, 43 yards? So it was hardly the Happily Ever After perfect grand finale. Also, before the start of the game who wasn’t excited to see Ben Roethlisberger play in this game? The guy was en fuego for so many consecutive

weeks, but once the game got underway he looked completely burnt out in arguably the most important game of his career. But maybe it doesn’t matter that he choked when he came out with the biggest “W” of all. In all honesty, I felt completely baffled throughout most of the game. I couldn’t tell whether or not I agreed with many of the controversial calls and I couldn’t understand why there were so few great, legitimate, legal uncontroversial plays. It seems to make sense that the NFL would want the Steelers to win—bigger city, bigger market, better fan base. And while I was pretty sure the refs weren’t rigging the game, I was also pretty sure that they were ruining it. I didn’t feel like I was

watching football. I felt like I was watching referees flailing their arms, watching film and talking into the camera. Needless to say, I was beyond disappointed with the way this game was played. Thrilled with the result, but disappointed by the game. The Super Bowl is supposed to convince the idiots who don’t already think football is one the most incredible games in the world that they’ve been missing out. And all it did was bore and confuse sports fans and non-sports fans to death, on top of convincing sports fans and not-yet-”Gray’s-Anatomy” fans that it is one of the most terrific programs on television. But hey, at least we have something else to watch on Sundays now.

Diary of a Poker Player: Think before you act The phone rang while I was taking a bath over winter break: “Would you be willing to do an interview about online poker with KSDK Channel 5 news once you get back to school?” the voice asked. I was really excited to be on television and to have my poker playing featured on the air, but when it came time to do the interview, I was a little nervous. I had spent about an hour cleaning my room (for those of you who see the interview on TV next week, yes, that is what I consider “clean”). My past few poker sessions had been less than stellar, and I wasn’t entirely sure how I was going to demonstrate what I do on a session-to-session basis. But interviewer Mike Bush’s arrival with cameras and lights in tow quickly turned into an hour-long observation of my card-playing and my routines. As good hands came and went, and opportunities presented themselves, I gradually built up my winnings to about $700. Mr. Bush would sometimes sit in silence, sometimes ask questions, but more often than not, he would express his astonishment at my ability to follow the events happening on eight different tables consistently. He would then focus in on a specific table where something interesting was

Alex Schwartz happening, and asked detailed questions regarding my ability to make the correct play in that situation. As I sat there, actively explaining to Bush what I was doing on each of the eight tables I was playing, it finally dawned on me. There comes a point in almost every player’s career, be they professional or amateur, when they start turning the decisionmaking process into an instinctual one. This has been gradually happening to me over the past few years. While it certainly can lead to some success, it will never replace the high level of thought that needs to go into each decision that each player faces. Was I put in great situations with good hands while Bush was there? Most definitely. Did I take advantage of almost every opportunity when it presented itself due to increased scrutiny? Did I quickly recognize the weak and strong players because his questions forced

me to focus more detail on the players surrounding me? Did I consistently make the mathematically correct decision as I tried to help him understand the probability that underscores the decision to check, call, bet or raise? Absolutely. In fact, I sometimes found myself “checking down” from my initial reaction to a given situation, instead choosing to utilize the wealth of information available at each table to make what, at the time, I considered a better alternative. When a player actively thinks about each decision as I was doing while explaining my play to Mr. Bush, taking every player at the table into account before acting, the result is going to be positive. He won’t win every time, but he will win more often. It doesn’t take a professional television interviewer to force this kind of analytical thought. Instead, just ask yourself this as you prepare to take your turn: what are the ramifications of this decision? What is the player sitting two spots to my left most likely to do? Try to justify every choice you make with data you’ve been collecting during your session, and most important, if you can’t rationalize your decisions, search for better alternatives.

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8 STUDENT LIFE | SPORTS

Senior Sports Editor / Justin Davidson / sports@studlife.com

FRIDAY | FEBRUARY 10, 2006

SPORTS Athletes give back: Bears for Bears v SAAC and WU

varsity athletes collect over 550 bears for charity By Scott Kaufman-Ross Sports Reporter Members of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) recently donated their time and effort in order to help St. Louis children in a project that the committee decided to call the “Bears for Bears Campaign.” In the end, the volunteering efforts proved to be a tremendous success. Originally, the athletes and volunteers of SAAC were attempting to collect 200 teddy bears to donate to the St. Louis Children’s Hospital, and, just as they often do out on the playing field, the Bears exceeded expectations, collecting over 500 bears during the campaign. The plan began when Lynn Imergoot, associate intramural director at Washington University, accompanied three students to the NCAA Regional Student Leadership Conference for Division III. Those three students, juniors Jamie Kressel, Delaina Martin, and Neal Griffin, along with senior Annie Poelstra, make up the SAAC executive committee. The four athletes compete

in softball, track and field, basketball, and tennis, respectively, and have been vital to the organization’s success. After attending the leadership conference, Imergoot and the committee developed an action plan with an emphasis on community service. Since the Washington University mascot is the bear, these student-athletes thought it might be clever to collect bears and donate them to children’s hospitals. In order to make the campaign a success and more enjoyable for the athletes, different teams paired up and held a competition to see who could collect the most bears. Each team paired up with a team of the opposite sex (for example, softball and men’s soccer) and competed against each other, coaches and faculty, and outside donations. The competition took place throughout the entire fall semester and concluded on Dec. 8. The last night of the drive came to a conclusion with the Second Annual Big SAAC Night. Here, the final competition between all the brother/sister teams occurred, and all the athletes’ hard work was celebrated in a night of fun competition. The ultimate winner was determined by dividing the total number of bears collected by the number of people on each team. When the results were tallied, the men’s cross country/track

BEARSPORTS.WUSTL.EDU

Senior Annie Poelstra of the women’s tennis team grins over the success of the inaugural Teddy Bear Drive. Poelstra was on the committee that conducted the drive.

BEARSPORTS.WUSTL.EDU

The Teddy Bear Drive Committee hangs out with the University’s mascot and some of the donations from the drive. They collected 554 bears, far surpassing their original goal of 300. and women’s swimming/diving teams came out on top. In total, approximately 550 bears were collected by the SAAC. These were donated to three causes, including the St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Cardinal Glennon’s Children’s Hospital. “When we went to deliver the bears to the children’s hospital, I remember thinking how proud I was of all the athletes and others who participated, said SAAC committee member Kressel. “This little competition will bring so many smiles to so many little kids.” Imergoot was also proud of the work the students accomplished. “It was a resounding success, which illustrated the impact that attending the NCAA Regional Division III Student Leadership

Conference had on our overall SAAC,” she said. Although the Bears for Bears Campaign was a great success, SAAC refuses to stop there. The committee, specifically Poelstra, has once again began sending members of the committee to the Make a Difference Center, volunteering their time to be with underprivileged children. This program is also appropriately named by SAAC as “Bears for Cubs.” Each team visits the Make a Difference Center one week during their off-season, allowing every athlete to contribute to this great cause. The committee has also extended what it does beyond just community service. This year they have also organized a breakfast with the chancellor in order to bridge the gap between

athletes and the administration. In addition, SAAC has also organized an all-athlete talent show this semester. Each sports team plans on performing a skit or dance during the show, giving the athletes a chance to prove that they have talents beyond athletics. The competition will take place in the Athletic Center in early April. Another of the SAAC’s achievements is a new athlete lounge in the Athletic Center. The lounge was a product 20 years in the making, and it was converted from two former racquetball courts. The room has already been equipped with computers and will soon include a television and a DVD player. The A.C. is very much like a second home to many athletes, and this lounge gives them a chance to

kick back when necessary. Many teams have early morning practices followed by class, and this is the perfect place for athletes to relax in between a 6 a.m. practice and a 10 a.m. class. Members of SAAC feel that they are an underappreciated organization, and are actively working to change that. “The four of us on the athletic committee are really trying to make SAAC well-known throughout the Wash. U. community,” said Kressel. “The athletes as a whole have so much to offer to Wash. U. and the city of St. Louis, and we want the athletes to have an outlet to do such things.” The committee’s accomplishments continue to pile up as the University’s athletes prove that they have more to offer than people might think.

Shattered dreams, courtesy of Michelle Kwan By Steven Hollander Contributing Reporter The 2006 Torino Olympics are just about ready to get underway, and undoubtedly stars will rise and fall in their quest for Olympic glory over the next few weeks. Yet what would a global event be without a little controversy? This year, amidst Bode Miller’s “60 Minutes” interview and accusations of doping by other athletes, one controversy that sticks out above the rest involves fi gure skating’s fi nest: seasoned veteran Michelle Kwan and 17-year-old newcomer Emily Hughes, sister of 2002 Olympic gold medalist Sarah Hughes. Controversy fl ared up after Kwan, skating’s “golden girl” for over a decade, was forced to withdraw from the U.S. Nationals, the Olympic qualifier for a spot on the Olympic roster, due to a groin injury. After Kwan felt that her groin injury healed, she fi led an injury petition arguing that her injury prevented her from proving herself for a spot on the Olympic roster and asked the U.S. Figure Skating Association’s International Committee to consider her past accomplishments as justification for her inclusion. This would not be the fi rst time that the injury petition would be used in the world of fi gure skating. Nancy Kerrigan was given a spot on the 1992 U.S. Olympic roster after she was slammed in the knee

with a crowbar at Nationals by associates of her competitor, Tonya Harding. And who was the poor unfortunate soul who lost her spot to Kerrigan? None other than Michelle Kwan. To say that Kwan’s body of work is unsubstantial would be just plain wrong. Kwan is arguably the greatest American fi gure skater of all time. She has captured nine U.S. National championships and fi ve World Championships over her career. The only thing that has eluded her has been Olympic gold. First it was Oksana Baiul, a poor, young Russian girl, who stole it from her. Then pint-sized Tara Lipinski bested Kwan. When Sarah Hughes came out of nowhere to leave Kwan once again empty-handed, it appeared that she would go down as the Dan Marino of ice skating. A career full of accomplishments left incomplete due to the absence of the sport’s most precious prize. The problem with all of this, however, was the fact that Hughes earned her spot on the U.S. roster with her impressive third-place fi nish at the 2006 Nationals here in St. Louis before Kwan fi led her petition. When Hughes skated an exceptionally good short program and fi nished the night in second place, the Olympic buzz that had followed her sister four years ago at Nationals began to follow her. On the night of her long program, Hughes sealed her spot on the Olympic ros-

GEORGE BRIDGES | KRT CAMPUS

Figure skater Michelle Kwan became involved in Olympics controversy as she ousted 17-year-old Emily Hughes from the third spot on the U.S. roster. Kwan missed the 2006 National qualifiers due to a groin injury. ter with a third-place fi nish behind gold medalist Sasha Cohen and 16-year-old silver

medalist Kimmie Meissner. Normally, the top three fi nishers at Nationals would au-

tomatically receive spots on the Olympic team. But then Kwan came knocking at the door. Questions have arisen about whether Kwan has reached the point in her career where what used to come easy begins to become more elusive and she can’t compete at the level she was once capable of. It’s not clear that Kwan is at this point now, especially when one considers the fact that she was a U.S. Nationals champion in 2005. And yet the Nationals were not the fi rst event Kwan missed this year due to injury. In fact, it has been 10 months since Kwan skated in an Olympic-style event, which was the 2005 World Championships. At this competition, she fi nished fourth, making it the fi rst time in a decade that Kwan left Worlds without a medal. Thanks to a strained ligament in her right hip, Kwan participated in one competition this year, a TV special on Dec. 11, where she failed to land even one triple jump. In the end, Kwan’s uncertain health and lack of practice time meant little to the USFSA’s International Committee, who overwhelmingly voted in Kwan’s favor (20-3). As a result, Hughes’ thirdplace fi nish wasn’t enough, and she was made an alternate to the U.S. team, which translates into “thanks but no thanks.” Kwan’s body of work was so great that it convinced the

governing body to believe that Kwan represented the greatest chance for American victory at Torino. But many wonder whether it’s worth risking Hughes’ chance to go to an Olympics to prove herself. The next Olympics will take place four years from now, when Hughes will be 21 years old and a senior in college. One has to ask what the chances are of Emily getting back to the Olympics then, and whether they are worth sacrificing a college education for. Kwan is undoubtedly one of America’s greatest skaters, as well as one of America’s greatest athletes; but does that mean she has the right to take away the possibility of Hughes’ one single chance at Olympic glory? Athletic greatness can warrant respect, applause, and admiration, but it does not warrant automatic exemption, especially when a sport’s greatest competition is in question. Granting Kwan exemption would be like granting the Yankees exemption to the World Series on the basis of Randy Johnson’s sore back, or granting the Patriots a free trip to the Super Bowl because of Tom Brady’s shoulder injury. It is the job of the athlete or team to earn their chance and make the best of the opportunity that they have been afforded. Unfortunately, as a result of this situation, we will never know what Emily would have accomplished if given the chance—and neither will she.


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