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IAS conference to examine environmental issues BY SCOTT FABRICANT CONTRIBUTING REPORTER This week, Washington University students will present their research projects on creating positive environmental change all around the world. The International and Area Studies (IAS) program will hold an environmental conference, where students will open their projects on environmental issues to faculty critiques and audience questions. The student conference is the capstone to the IAS program’s semester theme, “Energy, Environmental and Global Politics.” Topics will include climate change, developing nations, sustainable campuses and the politics of oil.

“We realize that students on this campus are doing incredible innovative research, and yet there are rarely opportunities for students to highlight their work or to see their peers as resources,” said International Events Coordinator Danielle Silber. “This conference’s objective is to bring together students from different fields of study so that they may share their research on common environmental themes, network with each other to improve their research and have access to faculty readers who can give them expert constructive feedback.” While most of the student panelists are Washington University undergraduate and graduate students, there are also representatives from University of Chicago, Meramec St. Louis

Community College and the Roosevelt Institution. “We have opened this conference up to interested faculty, students and staff from college campuses, high school campuses and related community organizations all around the St. Louis region,” said Silber. “Our hope is that this conference will become a nexus for people of all walks of life to learn from each other and collaborate on future global and local environmental initiatives.” Some of the students’ projects are based on their research or experiences abroad. Junior Jake Levitas will be giving a presentation on the possibility of building a cocoa plant in Ecuador as a more environmentally sustainable alternative


to deforestation. Levitas and other students studying abroad in Ecuador developed the idea from their interactions with locals. “I’ll be discussing a project my friend Mason [Earles] and I started while we were in Ecuador last semester,” said Levitas. “We organized a group of five architecture [students] and one business student from Wash. U. to put together an architectural plan and business plan for a sustainable chocolate factory to be built in Ecuador for a cocoa cooperative we worked with during our time there. It would be an awesome project to put together and a great use for our education.” While not directly related, the student conference will be fol-



cussions will be two to five students presenting their project for ten minutes, followed by three minutes for audience questions. The faculty readers will then offer their critiques and feedback. As an open community discussion, both the organizers and panelists hope to involve students and the surrounding community in learning and asking questions. “As a panelist and environmental studies major, I would love to see students there, learning from their peers about such interesting issues,” said junior Emily Dangremond. “It is the first time that International Area Studies has done something like this, but they hope to continue it in the future if this year is a success.”

GRE changes cancelled BY ELIZABETH LEWIS

Fraternities and sororities are gathering in the Brookings parking lot to assemble their facades in preparation for Thurtene Carnival, which takes place next weekend. Lot Week officially begins on Monday, April 16.

lowed on Saturday by the Earth Day festival; this year’s theme will be climate change. IAS honorary members will participate in a community art project, and speakers at the festival will follow in the vein of the conference. “We felt that Earth Day would be a perfect culminating celebration for the conference and perhaps a chance for panelists to get together again to build a community around their common initiatives and interests,” said Silber. “We [are] also hoping that Earth Day would be a way to engage the St. Louis community in fun educational events, that avoid what can be an intimidating structure of a more formal conference.” The format of the panel dis-

The Educational Testing Services (ETS) suddenly cancelled planned test changes to the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) last Monday. The changes will be postponed to a later date, which has not yet been determined, according to ETS. The updated GRE had been scheduled for release this September. The revised test, which had already been delayed by a year, was originally slated to be released last October. Some of the changes to the new test included almost doubling the length from two-and-a-half to four hours and significantly decreasing the number of times the test is offered per year from six days per week per year to 35 days per year. Additional changes includecd revised content in all three sections of the test—Verbal, Analytical Writing and Quantitative—and changing the scale of the test from 200-800 points to 110-150 points. Why are the changes being cancelled? Jung Lee, the GRE program manager of Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions, explained that the answer is simple. ETS

was not able to guarantee enough seats for the revised test to its roughly half-a-million annual test takers. “The number of administrations [of the test] was being revised to a new 35 times a year and [ETS] needed to come up with computers almost ten times as [many as they had available]. They couldn’t guarantee that all students would find a seat,” he said. Lee sees the cancellation as a positive development for students. Fortunately, many students have not yet begun to prepare for the new GRE. “Students were facing a longer and more challenging [test]. With the test change, they could not take it in August of this year. Now, they can,” said Lee. According to the ETS Web site, although the overhauled test has been cancelled, ETS is still looking for ways to incorporate the changes that the new test would have offered as long as these changes do not interfere with testing access. Lee said that these new test changes should not deter students from taking the test in its current form. “As this announcement has

shown, there is no certainty to every test change. ETS is looking for ways to incorporate test changes in the future. I recommend that students take the test in its current form. The scores are good for five years. Stick with the timeline originally planned,” said Lee. Though the announcement of the new test being cancelled has pleased many students, senior Katherine DeGuire saw some of the potential changes as positive. She thinks that the new exam would test higher reasoning skills, which would give more students a fair chance. “Higher reasoning seems like a good thing to test because it plays to ability and not how good of a school you went to. Standardized tests should test natural ability,” she said. But she disagrees with the scoring scale that the new test would have proposed, saying that it was not very wide and allowed for less of a variation in scores. DeGuire thinks that the incorporation of the new changes would have caused people to complain but would have eventually been accepted. “Change is annoying, but it’s better in the long run,” added DeGuire.

Fraternities fill Web site aims to provide answers to space, Beta faces common questions difficulties BY JACQUELINE BRIXEY CONTRIBUTING REPORTER Washington University students can now access College Wikis, a Web site which enables students to track down information and connect to other students. The Web site looks to provide a central database for students to ask and answer questions. It offers information ranging from local restaurant choices to classes on campus; the site also offers the ability to create mailing lists whose archives will be stored publicly. “You would go on to Facebook to fi nd information about people; our goal is to be the ultimate information source for college students,” said Joe DiPasquale, one of the founders of CollegeWikis, who is a graduate student at Stanford. “My aim is to be a source for

the information that I needed while I was in college, things like the best pizza place, the best place to get a haircut.” The Wiki boasts that it has already been implemented at 21 colleges, including Stanford, Yale and the University of Chicago. In order to join, users must enter an .edu e-mail address. Members have the ability to view the site’s discussion boards as well as create entries and e-mail lists relating to the University. Members can also post questions to their peers who use the site. “I believe that we are a community-based resource. The only information is there because someone in the community wanted it there,” stated DiPasquale. “One of the things that makes us different from other Wikis is that

See WIKI, page 3

Connections in Cadenza Learn about the intricate connections of Conor Oberst in the music industy. This artist has been involved in many musical ventures. Cadenza, Page 8

BY PUNEET KOLLIPARA SENIOR STAFF REPORTER Although in past years fraternities at Washington University have encountered problems filling their houses, this year fraternity houses have generally seen greater occupancy. At the same time, this year Beta Theta Pi is having difficulties filling its house. At 38 spaces, Beta has the largest house to fill. Other fraternity houses range from 18 slots, in Theta Xi, to 33 spots, in Sigma Alpha Mu. According to Assistant Vice Chancellor Jill Carnaghi, this year, two of the fraternities are at over 100 percent of space filled and four are at 100 percent capacity. “This is by far the best year we have ever had. Members of chapters have set clear expectations in their by-laws,” said Carnaghi. According to the Greek Life

Office (GLO), Beta did not reach its minimum housing quota this year by March 27, the deadline for submitting fraternity housing contracts. GLO policies require that by that deadline, a fraternity house must be filled to 93 percent capacity. According to Jessica Gendron, coordinator for Greek housing programs, GLO sets policies for housing occupancy but does not force students to live in Greek housing and it is the fraternity’s responsibility to fill the house. Marius Johnson, vice president of operations of Beta, said that in the past more fraternity members chose to live in the fraternity house, but in recent years there has been a trend of members choosing to live elsewhere. “I really think it is more of a cultural shift in terms of Wash.

See BETA, page 2

Wash. U. loves tennis Men’s tennis has another slammin’ weekend. Check out the play-by-play and box scores from the team’s most recent games. Sports, Page 6


Beta Theta Pi is having problems meeting the minimum occupancy quota for its house next year, which could result in fines or sanctions for the fraternity.

INSIDE: Forum. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Sports. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Cadenza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Sudoku . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7



Senior News Editor / Sam Guzik /




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2:41 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— MALLINCKRODT CENTER— Suspect found stealing books and then returning them for money. Time of occurrence: between April 2 and April 3. Value $276.00. Disposition: Cleared by arrest.

Copyright 2007 Editor in Chief: Erin Fults Executive Editor: David Brody Managing Editors: Mandy Silver, Shweta Murthi, Mallory Wilder Senior News Editor: Sam Guzik Senior Forum Editor: Nathan Everly Senior Cadenza Editor: Brian Stitt Senior Scene Editor: Felicia Baskin Senior Sports Editor: Trisha Wolf Senior Photo Editor: David Hartstein Forum Graphics Editor: Rachel Harris Information Graphics Editor: Meaghan Willard News Editors: Josh Hantz, David Song, Andrea Winter News Manager: Elizabeth Lewis Assignments Editor: Sara Rajaram Forum Editors: Tess Croner, Jill Strominger, Christian Sherden, Dennis Sweeney Cadenza Editors: Elizabeth Ochoa, David Kaminsky, Cecilia Razak, Michelle Stein Scene Editors: Lana Goldsmith, Indu Chandrasekhar Sports Editors: Andrei Berman, Unaiz Kabani, Allie Wieczorek Photo Editors: Alwyn Loh, Lionel Sobehart, Eitan Hochster, Jenny Shao Online Editor: Scott Bressler Design Chief: Anna Dinndorf Copy Chiefs: Willie Mendelson, Indu Chandrasekhar Copy Editor: Jeff Lesser Designers: Ellen Lo, Jamie Reed, Chris Maury, Kim Yeh, Dennis Sweeney, Courtney LeGates, Laura McLean

3:42 p.m. LOST ARTICLEPOSSIBLY STOLEN—MCMILLAN HALL—Staff member advised that her wallet was missing from her ofďŹ ce in McMillan Hall sometime between 9 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Disposition: Pending. 6:39 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— SNOW WAY GARAGE—Complainant reported items stolen from his vehicle when someone gained entry by prying the door handle. Time of occurrence: between 9 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Several items missing valued at $430. Disposition: Pending. 7:09 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— PARKING LOT #4—Complainant reported his vehicle was broken into while parked on Lot #4 between 4 p.m. and 7:10 p.m.

Unknown person(s) used a pry object to punch underneath the driver’s door to gain entry to the vehicle and steal a small amount of change. Disposition: Pending. Wednesday, April 4 3:33 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— GIVENS HALL—Victim reported her iPod was stolen from Givens Hall second oor studio. Value of loss: $300.00. Time of occurrence: between March 29 at 5:30 p.m. and March 30 at 10 a.m. Disposition: Pending. 4:38 p.m. PROPERTY DAMAGE—MILLBROOK GARAGE—Unknown person(s) attempted to gain entry to a vehicle between 7:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Entry was not gained, but pry marks damaged the door. Disposition: Pending. 6:27 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— ATHLETIC COMPLEX—Student reported her red Schwinn 10speed mountain bike had been stolen from the east side of the Athletic Complex sometime between 12 p.m. on Jan. 1 and 12 p.m. on Jan 27. The bike was left

unsecured. Value $300. Disposition: Pending. 9:23 p.m. AUTO ACCIDENT— Lot #1—Victim reported her car was damaged while parked in the lot on the north side of Walker Hall. The striking vehicle left the scene. Disposition: Pending.


a.m. DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY—HITZEMAN DORM—Unknown subject damaged the complainant’s Razor scooter on April 7 at 10 a.m. Disposition: Pending. Monday, April 9 8:50

Thursday, April 5 1:26 p.m. ARREST— MALLINCKRODT CENTER—OfďŹ cers arrested a subject wanted in a theft/buy back scam from the University Bookstore. Individual had a number of stolen books in her possession and had visited the store twice previously this week. Disposition: Cleared by arrest. Saturday, April 7 6:43 p.m. INSTITUTIONAL VANDALISM—HURD DORM— Unknown person(s) damaged a gate and a section of fence on the south side of Hurd Dorm. Time of occurrence: unknown. Disposition: Pending.

a.m. INSTITUTIONAL VANDALISM—SMALL GROUP#3—Person(s) unknown damaged gate to cafe area. Time of occurrence: between 3 a.m. and 7 a.m. Disposition: Pending. 8:56 a.m. LARCENY—BRYAN HALL—Complainant reports copper wiring was stolen between April 6 at 3:30 p.m. and April 9 at 8:55 a.m. Value $1500. Disposition: Pending. 9:36 a.m. PARKING VIOLATION—MILLBROOK GARAGE— Fraudulent permit located on a vehicle by Transportation. Permit was seized and vehicle was towed. Disposition: Cleared. 1:26 p.m. SUSPICIOUS PERSON—PARKING LOT #33—Re-

Sunday, April 8

port received of two suspicious subjects attempting to open car doors. Canvas of parking lot found no vehicles had been broken into. OfďŹ cers contacted subjects who both had outstanding warrants. Disposition: Cleared by arrest. 3:22 p.m. LARCENY-THEFT— GREGG DORM—Student/employee of ResTech was replacing an outdated computer in the Village area when unknown person(s) stole the old model he had placed on an unattended golf cart as he was installing the new model. Time of occurrence: between 2 p.m. and 2:15 p.m. Stolen computer was to be disposed of because it had little or no value. Disposition: Pending. 4:42 p.m. TELEPHONE HARASSMENT—WOMEN’S BUILDING— University employee stated that she has received several “wrong numberâ€? telephone calls from an unknown male over the past two months. The caller has not threatened the woman, but the calls have become more frequent. Disposition: Pending.

BETA v FROM PAGE 1 U.,â€? he said. “This is not just in terms of Beta, it’s that brothers in general have chosen to take a different path.â€? Gendron said that this is the ďŹ rst time that Beta has struggled to ďŹ ll its house. Greek Life is actively working with Beta to resolve the problem. “Once [Beta’s] leadership became aware that they wouldn’t be able to meet their occupancy requirements, they really worked with Greek Life to talk about what some of the options were,â€? said Ronald Laue, interim director of Greek Life. “We’re still having those conversations.â€? “We are dealing with this as a chapter,â€? said Johnson. “It is really an internal matter.â€? If Beta cannot reach the 93 percent housing minimum, the fraternity faces substantial ďŹ nancial penalties. “We’re working with the fraternity to ďŹ gure out a way to make their house full or close to full so that they don’t have

General Manager: Andrew O’Dell Advertising Manager: Sara Judd Copyright 2007 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 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

to pay exorbitant empty bed fees,â€? said Gendron. For every bed below 93 percent capacity that is not ďŹ lled a $2,000 penalty is imposed. With this year’s freshman class having caused a housing crunch with Residential Life, Laue said that it is important for the fraternity houses to be as ďŹ lled as possible. “The goal is to make sure that the frat houses are ďŹ lled. Residential Life has a space crunch as well, so we try and make sure that our houses are as ďŹ lled as possible to help them out,â€? said Laue. “Any house can have non-members live there, but that’s not an ideal situation. We leave that choice up to the chapter, though.â€? Having several houses at or above 100 percent this year has been a boon for Reslife. “When we get the frat house at 100 percent or above, for each member that lives there, that frees up Reslife space. This has a bearing on the en-

tire housing situation,â€? added Carnaghi. Beta President Phil Sholts said that the fraternity would not force members into living in the house. “We’re handling this as a brotherhood, but by no means would we force people to live in the house,â€? he said. Beta’s difďŹ culties are not the ďŹ rst time a Washington University fraternity has had difďŹ culty meeting its quota. “Over time we have different fraternities that struggle to ďŹ ll their house for various reasons, partially because of how much they market it throughout the year living in the fraternity houses as an option, or low membership number,â€? said Gendron. Another fraternity that had a similar problem last year is Kappa Sigma. According to sophomore Glenn Laatsch, grand scribe of Kappa Sigma, the fraternity encountered difďŹ culties ďŹ lling

its house. “We have some of the smallest doubles on campus and faced with the choice between living here in the house or in ResLife, most members choose Residential Life housing,â€? said Laatsch. “Last year a lot of people had to make sacriďŹ ces to live in the house so that we wouldn’t be faced with penalties.â€? To avert the problem, the fraternity had to take a new approach during its rush week. “We focused our rush efforts on getting a group of guys during rush that would be willing to live in the house. Our new members realize that they gain something by living in the house together,â€? said Laatsch. “A lot of it falls to the new members. They haven’t lived in the house before and it falls to them to step up.â€? -Additional reporting by Erin Fults, Sam Guzik and Mandy Silver

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Senior News Editor / Sam Guzik /


Parkinson’s drugs potentially help stroke victims BY SHWETA MURTHI MANAGING EDITOR Researchers at Washington University’s School of Medicine have discovered a possible treatment for victims of stroke whose symptoms include motor neglect by using known treatments for Parkinson’s disease. Dopamine, a chemical associated with pleasure sensation, was found to be the critical link between treatment for Parkinson’s disease and stroke. In stroke patients, neglect can be defi ned as the inability to respond to a stimulus on the opposite side of a brain lesion, usually in the right hemisphere. There are several types of neglect, including spatial neglect, where a person does not detect stimulus on one half of the visual field, and motor neglect, where there is a delay in physically reacting to the stimulus. To differentiate between the two types of neglect, researchers created an experiment in which stroke patients were shown two targets, one in each half of the visual field, and asked to respond to this stimulus. If the subjects simply had a delayed recognition time, this would indicate a spatial neglect, whereas recognizing that a stimulus was present but taking a long time to press the button would indicate motor neglect. “It is not yet known if neglect is one syndrome or a family of syndromes. It was never actually done systematically—break-

ing up the syndrome into specific types,” said Ayelet Sapir, a post-doctoral researcher in neurology. Motor neglect can be a serious problem for stroke patients in day-to-day activities. For instance, driving with neglect can be difficult because there are no outward indicators of problems, but reaction time is compromised. The potential link between motor neglect and Parkinson’s disease was found through the analysis of MRI scans of stroke victims with motor neglect, isolating which areas suffered from similar damage. The answer was clear: all right hemisphere stroke victims with motor deficit showed damage in the putamen, a subcortical region of the brain. “Those patients who didn’t have a motor deficit didn’t have lesions. That’s as strong as it gets. That means the putamen must be involved,” said Sapir. Coincidentally, Parkinson’s disease had been linked to problems with the putamen as well. While the putamen is not actually damaged in Parkinson’s patients, it is responsible for receiving dopamine signals from the substantia nigra, a region significantly destroyed in Parkinson’s disease. This lack of dopamine signaling creates problems with muscle contractions, leading to decreased reaction time, just like in motor neglect. “It may be interesting to try

treating stroke patients with dopamine. This has been tried in the past and the results were kind of mixed, because probably only some patients will benefit from it and some patients will not,” said Sapir. “It may be more complicated than just [giving] dopamine to stroke patients.” Sapir explained that the ultimate goal of her research would be to get a clinical trial and start treating patients. Before this, however, Sapir wants to identify more types of neglect and if we can isolate a brain region with them. For example, objectbased neglect and spatial neglect are still not pinpointed to a certain region of the brain. “Now that we found the region, it is possible to treat them not only with dopamine but other treatments. For instance, something that is also done in Parkinson’s is deep brain stimulation to reduce imbalance.” Sapir is the lead author of this research project, whose fi ndings are published in the Journal of Neuroscience. Undergraduate Julie Kaplan, a junior, also participated in the collection and analysis of the stroke data. “I really liked working directly with the patients. Giving the behavioral tests was pretty interesting,” said Kaplan, a philosophy-neuroscience-psychology major. “It was a great experience just to be in a lab environment and [to be able to participate] in all parts, from the computational analysis to the behavioral tasks.”

WIKI v FROM PAGE 1 not only can you create a page, but you can ask a question of the community.” When posting questions, a user can send a message to any of the site’s available email lists in order to receive a reply. The site allows for the creation of e-mail lists for floors, classes and clubs. As soon as a person replies to the question, the user will be notified of the response. While the Wiki aims to be user-friendly and inviting for all communities, the system has yet to appeal to Wash. U. students. The discussion board, at the time of publication, had only eight questions posted, only half of which were accompanied by a response. None of the dorms listed had any subscribed users. No clubs or organizations were listed. “As people fi nd it a more useful source of information, the site should begin to grow,” said DiPasquale. “People are wondering the same things now that they have been wondering for years and will be wondering for years into the future. This site should appeal to people because it will put the answers in one central place.” Some students, such as sophomore Leah Winer, said that they had not yet heard of the CollegeWiki system. Winer said she did not remember receiving an e-mail about it. In an informal poll of students, many reported not needing the Web site because they would rather ask friends for advice. These students

mentioned that the site would take too long to fi nd to answer questions. Some students think that the Wiki is not needed because there are so many other forums for giving and receiving information, such as Facebook or fl yers on campus. Junior Ben Rivera, who said he already had so many resources, asked, “Why do I need one more?” Olawale Hassan, also a junior, agreed.

“It is just another networking site.” Although many students have not yet been convinced of the need for the Wiki, as it grows it has the potential to act as an interface for students looking to sell extra meal points or searching for answers to specific questions. “This is sort of a new idea, but it has the potential to grow in many ways because it is so flexible,” said DiPasquale.

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Senior Forum Editor / Nathan Everly /



Our daily Forum editors: Monday: Christian Sherden

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 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.


Lessons from Leslie Brown’s tenure denial C

hancellor Mark Wrighton once argued that, “a great university becomes so because of great people.” We wholeheartedly agree with this assessment, and we are consequently troubled by the mystery surrounding Washington University’s decision to deny tenure to Leslie Brown, an assistant professor of history and African American studies. While the reasons behind this decision continue to remain unknown, the student reaction to this judgment has nonetheless been contentious. The advent of this debate has led us to conclude that the University must do a better job conveying to students its criteria for making tenure decisions. One of the fi rst things to consider is that Leslie Brown is by all accounts an excellent teacher. Official Washington University student course evaluations from classes ranging from Topics in Women’s History: African American Women to African American

Studies: An Introduction have consistently given Brown high marks. In particular, students gave her high marks for her concern for students, her respect of student opinions, her enthusiasm for the material she was teaching and her ability to challenge her students. These are teaching gifts that are unfortunately lacking in some Washington University professors and it would be a shame to lose them. Additionally, it has also become apparent that there was very little meaningful student input in the decision to deny tenure to Dr. Brown. We know this because there is a large number of Washington University students who are publicly contesting the school’s judgment. “ABS is fully supportive of the efforts on campus to reconsider Dr. Brown’s tenure denial,” said Olufolajimi Ige, president of the Association of Black Students. “It is important to recognize that Dr. Brown’s presence as a quality instruc-

tor as well as a black woman is a boon for the entire University, and not any individual minority group.” To be sure, the decision to grant tenure is strongly based on the professor’s ability to attract research grant money and publish academic papers. But while the reasons behind the decision to grant Dr. Leslie Brown tenure are currently unclear, we know enough about the situation to be concerned about the message that this decision is sending to students. The Washington University mission statement argues that one of the school’s centralduties is to, “prepare students with the attitudes, skills, and habits of lifelong learning and with leadership skills, enabling them to be useful members of a global society.” By every meaningful measure, Dr. Leslie Brown has helped students achieve this goal. So the University must understand that while it certainly has the power to grant tenure to anyone it chooses, its decisions do

have a substantial impact on the entire student body. If the recent displays of student activism are any indication, there needs to be a better dialogue between the University and students regarding faculty issues. Many students are justifiably upset that Dr. Leslie Brown is being denied tenure, and the secrecy surrounding the decision has demonstrated that it would be helpful if they were better informed about the considerations that factor into tenure decisions. This is not to say that the University should reveal the specifics of Dr. Leslie Brown’s case. She has a right to privacy in this matter and everyone should respect that. But too many students have absolutely no idea what exactly the University evaluates when making its tenure decisions. This needs to change and we hope that it will change once the University fully considers the student efforts to contest their judgment regarding Dr. Leslie Brown.



We’re ready to go to work Dear Editor: The flyering, chalking, screaming our names at you and the candy handouts are all done. Now we sit here, as four individuals ready to give a clearer sense of direction to an organization committed to serving the students. We are ready to take risks needed to make changes and excited to take the time to listen to your needs. Student Union is full of the most passionate people you’ll meet at this University. But the culture shift that is needed over the next year must come from our interaction with you. We’ll be in constant communication with you, because that¹s the

only way SU can thrive. Whether it is us sitting in meetings with the top administration on this campus or in a Treasury meeting, it’s difficult to advocate for a student position if the only views we have are our own. We’re not here for ourselves and it’s your job as a student community to keep us in check. It’s our job to give you the microphone. You’ve heard our goals throughout the campaign: better fitness facilities, nationally recognized speakers, universal and powerful wireless Internet and a better use of your $2 million (that’s $328 from each one of you). They’re incredibly ambitious goals. But that’s not a problem because we’re in the

presence of the most passionate students on this planet. We have 365 days to do what we need to do. We’re not going to take a single day for granted, and neither should you. E-mail us, call us or stop us when you see us. What’s worrying you? What’s annoying you? What do you think is going well on campus? The change starts now. What can SU do for you? -Student Union 2007-2008 Neil Patel - President Elect Brittany Perez - Vice President Elect Marius Johnson - Treasurer Elect Rebecca Forman - Secretary Elect

Wednesday: Jill Strominger Friday: Tess Croner

Student Life shouldn’t run candidate endorsements Dear Editor: Your entire editorial board should rethink its role in the Wash. U. community. I was thoroughly outraged by your irreverent participation in the run-up to the recent SU election, when a staff editorial endorsed a specific set of candidates who came to win “in a landslide.” Washington University is a small community. The New

See LETTERS, page 5

The problems with modern medical practice


helped with this, but all s I sit here, deluthe counsel I got was in sional, praying I the form of prescriptions. won’t encounter They treated me well in another bombardHealth Services, but people ment of coughs, hoping seemed to have forgotten I won’t burst into a cold that the patient actually sweat, anticipating the next doing something himself or time I’m going to have to herself can be an important get up because the aching part of treatment. of my muscles might just Which leads to Fignot allow it, my ure 2: Sunday I went to mind goes back Barnes-Jewish because to the exchange Health Services was of articles beginclosed; I was a total ning with “Sciwreck and my mom ence and Magic” told me to. I was seen (February 23, by at least seven peo2007). I don’t ple in a span of about want to misinterpret what was Dennis Sweeney an hour. The most I saw a single person written, so I won’t was three times. None of interpret it at all. But the them really had any idea gist of the matter was a what was wrong with me, kind of challenging of the assumptions we make about and each of them did different tasks that were probably modern medicine; that maybe modern medicine and traditional medicine aren’t as different as we’d all like to assume. I, currently a sick person (walking pneumonia, thank you very much), would like to weigh in on the matter. Modern medicine, ideally, is a really great idea. There are plenty of times when I and others I know and am closely related to have been really lucky to have these kinds of things to carry them through sickness or other afflictions. And indeed, I wouldn’t even know what in the world was wrong with me right now related, but were clearly not if it wasn’t for hundreds of being integrated very well, years of the development of and none of them seemed to medicine. A lot of us would really care that much at all. probably be dead without it. So, after all this is done, anBut, because it is so good other new guy entered the ideally, because it is suproom, took out some papers posed to take care of things and started mumbling a that we would normally diagnosis from the page he have to deal with, medicine was reading. This was the often gets bastardized in practice, whether it’s fault reason I was there, and he of the doctor, of the patient was running through it like or of the general chaos of the disclaimer at the end of humanity. a commercial. Figure 1: I have taken 15 And so he gave me a pills today and it’s not even prescription and showed my four o’clock. Before I go to friend who came with me bed I will probably take at and I the way out, after failleast five more. And I still ing miserably to direct us to feel like crap. I imagine the pharmacy in the comthat the antibiotic I am on plex. We finally ended up will be the saving grace of finding out it was closed, this vast combination of so we got a dejected ride medicine and eventually I back. I couldn’t get to the will be singing the praises Walgreen’s pharmacy either of mixed medication and since I’m about to collapse putting things in your body and, still, Health Services that you don’t really underwas closed and only fills stand at all. But for right their own prescriptions now, I’m a very generous six anyway. Turns out I was for 15 on how many of these screwed until the next day. pills are doing what they’re My point is that yes, supposed to be doing. And medicine is really great imagine what else they are a lot of times, especially doing to my body. No wonwhen everyone is focusing der I’m such a mess. on what they are doing. What scares me about But sometimes, it also gets all the pills is that it totally messed up in its applicatakes away any sense of tion to real life. I’m sitting personal control over your here, on drugs I don’t reown body and its sickness. ally know anything about, We, of course, in reality do with a disease I don’t know not have much control over much about either, without if we come down with pneuany tangible way of helpmonia, the flu or a cough, ing myself get better. It but to take away even the ilwill get better, that’s the lusion of your own ability to good thing. But the procontrol your body’s physical cess wasn’t meant to be so well-being is to create a demessy. terministic pill-popper (me right now). There must be at Dennis is a freshman in least something the docArts & Sciences and a Forum tors could have told me to Editor. He can be reached via do that was under my own e-mail at djsweene@artsci. control that really would’ve

“There must be at least something the doctors could have told me to do that was under my own control that really would’ve helped with this, but all the counsel I got was in the form of prescriptions.”




Student Life welcomes letters to the editor and op-ed submissions from readers.

Editorials are written by the Forum editors and reflect the consensus of the editorial board. The editorial board operates independently of the newsroom.

Once an article has been published on, our Web site, it will remain there permanently. We do not remove articles from the site, nor do we remove authors’ names from articles already published on the Web, unless an agreement was reached prior to July 1, 2005.

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Senior Forum Editor / Nathan Everly /




Tap into the Wash. U. fan potential T

the library than at the football he Red and White games. My father discovered spring football game he had a colleague at work for my beloved Univerwho had graduated sity of Nebrasfrom Wash. U. and ka Cornhuskers is this told him with one of weekend and I, again, those expressions am a little depressed that made Wash. U. that I’m missing out on sports sound less inthe action of a Division viting than 4 a.m. fi re I sports school. My drills—that at this father used to try to school you just don’t tell me that I had to be go to the games. wrong about the athI do not blame Red letic apathy at Wash. U. Jill Strominger Alert for failing to and that if I went to the get the student body games I would see that pumped up about its athletics. the school really did have a They offer pizza and T-shirts pretty good following and that and give prizes and try to get game days could foster at least students to the games. But if the excitement level of the athnobody else is excited about letics at the high school I went the games, then a T-shirt isn’t to. However, I quickly discovgoing to motivate anyone to ered there were more people at

show up. There’s no camaraderie, no excitement, no feeling like you’re a part of something and no working together for a common goal. Those are the experiences that motivate people to watch athletics. Fostering an atmosphere at Wash. U. where athletics are exciting and lots of students care about how their teams do will take a lot of work. First, as is the problem with basically every event on this campus (minus the Danforth campus dedication), nobody really knows what athletic events are going on and where they are. It’s not that this information is difficult to fi nd, it’s just that it needs to be out in peoples’ faces. Then, after people know

when games are, it gets a little bit more tricky. Six or so students need to fly down to Emory and vandalize their campus by making flyers that

“I quickly discovered there were more people at the library than at the football games.” say something like, “Emory girls have hick accents.” Alright, I’m not serious about flying down to Emory because we all found out that’s no way to start a rivalry or really make anyone care about athletics. The truth is that I have no

idea how you start an athletic tradition, because what makes it special is that it’s a sort of bond between the fans and a relationship between the fans and the team. There’s something special about a team to fans and it gets built from the tradition that develops over time. If you want to leave your mark on Wash. U., stop slaving over your chemistry book; there will be countless individuals from this school who make great contributions to chemistry and medicine and you will only be one of them. Instead, be the one who figures out how to get people fi red up about sports. Judging from the interest in March Madness and the interest in Division

I sports, I know we have the potential for a really spirited athletic following. My suggestion is that we publicize the stories. There has to be a Rudy somewhere on the teams at Wash. U. Someone we could get behind and want to support. Still, somebody has to fi nd this person and let the rest of our campus know about his or her existence. Once we have a way to start it, to tap into the fan potential at this school, the excitement will feed on itself, and quickly. Let the search begin. Jill is a sophomore in Arts & Sciences and a Forum editor. She can be reached via e-mail at

Wacky weather leaves us wanting BY TOM BUTCHER STAFF COLUMNIST


hen you come from Oklahoma, the weather is always a natural topic of discussion. Of course, everybody everywhere talks about the weather, but Mid-Westerners in general and Oklahomans specifically are host to such a wacky array of weather that we seem to talk about it much more often. That, and there’s not very much else to talk about in Oklahoma. Case in point: you know that common phrase, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a couple of hours?” Well, it was coined by Will Rogers, the famous depression-era humorist and he was talking about Oklahoma. With freezing winters, hundred-plus-degree summers and tornados in spring like allergic sneezes from the Almighty—Oklahoma truly has it all. This article, however, is not about Oklahoma. It’s about the wacky weather we’ve had as of late in the great city of St. Louis. After a glorious fall, we slipped into quite possibly the harshest winter that this city has seen in 20 years. We had snow on the ground for two weeks, which never happens, and we had sub-zero temperatures and overall we just had a rather miserable time. Then, things began to heat back up, and it was wonderful. The thermometer hung around 50 for a few weeks, which seemed like paradise after the weather we had been getting. And then, wonder of wonders, in one spectacular day, the temperature jumped 30 degrees to rest at 78, ushering in a magnificent spring for all to enjoy. People were playing frisbee and football on the swamp, girls were laying out and get-

ting tan and even the pasty nerds who hadn’t seen the sun in a couple of years dragged their laptops outside and did their homework under the smiling sun. In short, the weather was as close to perfection as you could get—not too hot, but not too cold; not incredibly dry, but not too humid either; sunny, but with enough clouds to provide pleasant shade and a picturesque horizon; just enough wind to make you really appreciate being outside.

“I must say, Mother Nature, WTF? We had a good thing going, and then you went and messed it all up.” In short, it seemed as if God was fi nally smiling on St. Louis. And now this. I must say, Mother Nature, WTF? We had a good thing going and then you went and messed it all up. What the hell, dude? Did we do something wrong? I know there’s that whole global warming thing going on that you’re pissed about, but shouldn’t that make the weather warmer, not colder? In light of these recent events, I believe that I will be legally emancipating myself from Mother Nature. She’s just not being a good parent and she’s trying to take all my fun away. This recent spat of cold weather could be reasonably interpreted as neglectful parenting. I don’t think that there’s much legal precedent for this, but with a good lawyer and an understanding judge, I think I’ve got a fair shot.


Bad jokes aside, I’m sure that the weather will get warmer, in time. But the forecast widget on my Mac tells me that we’ve got another week of 50-degree weather ahead of us. This is April—it’s supposed to be warm! It’s also

supposed to rain in April, but when I went to class on Friday, it was snowing. I’m sick and tired of all this. I didn’t leave Oklahoma to be confronted by weather worse than the place I came from. Ultimately, the only

You’re smart, get active BY DAVE SHAPIRO STAFF COLUMNIST


any columnists focus on things that are bad— things that need to be changed. Today, I want to focus on the good things that need not be changed and those we can make even better. It’s easy to write about bad things and easy to chastise others. It’s usually more difficult to praise others and talk about the good we encounter daily. I think we can all agree that life probably shouldn’t be that way. Some argue that we point out negatives in order to make them better. Oftentimes, however, negative words lack a proactive, backing force. Words without actions do little, if anything. We can best affect change by developing allies for a common cause. By praising others, we develop those allies. Furthermore, it’s good to have friends. It doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving or Valentine’s Day to tell someone you love them or that they’re smart or that they’re doing a good job. Don’t take endearing qualities for granted. Don’t let good friends or good teachers ever believe they are any-

thing less than vital to you. It is with that philosophy in mind that I bring up the issue of using positives to maintain the good around you. One of my favorite professors from last semester, Professor Leslie Brown, was recently denied tenure to the history department. Her colleagues supported her unanimously. She introduced me to in-depth historical research, and she is the sole reason I am now going to do a senior honors thesis. It took only a semester for me to understand the joy that history can be—all because of her tutelage. If the reward for that is being denied tenure, then by all means, deny her tenure. That’s not how this is going to play out, though. I have faith in reason and logical argumentation. Universities are places where we question what people tell us “just is.” Universities are special because of that characteristic. We don’t have to accept unjust, unfair decisions. I know that we value reason at Washington University in St. Louis. This is crucial because reason tells us that good deeds are admired and rewarded. Write to Dean Macias and Chancellor Wrighton about the professors you admire. Write to

your professors directly and let them know the impact

“We have remained apathetic too long. We are not just among the best and brightest—we are the best and brightest students in the world, and we will prove it.” OR “We don’t have to just accept unjust, unfair decisions.” they have on your life. Tell your professors, friends and family that they’re worth something. They’ll appreciate it. In the coming days, weeks and as long as it takes, this student body is going to witness a new kind of student activism. We have remained apathetic too long. We are not just among the best and the brightest— we are the best and brightest students in the world, and we will prove it. Look for more in the fu-

ture about Professor Brown. You won’t have to look hard. Our efforts certainly won’t end with simply standing by her. By supporting professors we love and by recruiting professors worthy of the title “Washington University in Saint Louis Faculty Member,” we can make this campus a far better place. We didn’t start today. The process to pressure the administration to attract and retain qualified faculty members that represent the diversity of the student body, and to create more courses we would like to see taught has already begun. In the coming weeks, I will discuss issues of great importance to the Washington University community. I hope to include strategies to affect positive change. The strategies may be as easy as talking and writing letters or as radical as holding a sit-in. I hope to address both political and social issues, as long as those issues specifically involve the Wash. U. community. We need to foster activism here before we address global concerns. Let’s begin. Stay tuned. Dave is a sophomore in Arts & Sciences. He can be reached via e-mail at

thing I can conclude about Mother Nature is that she’s a tease. She gives us just a glimpse of 80-degree weather, just long enough to get us really excited and taking off our winter clothes and then she cuts off the momentum, leav-

ing us all with a significant case of spring blue balls. No one likes a tease. Let’s step it up, Nature. Tom is a freshman in Arts & Sciences. He can reached via e-mail at

LETTERS v FROM PAGE 4 York Times and others can justifiably publish an endorsement due to the diversity of forthright and opposing voices. Freedom of the press permits your editorial, but frankly, you should display more prudence. In a small sphere where yours is the only significantly wide-read publication, a statement of preference dismissing qualified candidates does not illuminate the community, it actually steers it. It is not the role of the small team of minds heading Student Life to guide our community in an innocent election; there’s nothing on the line here at Wash. U., and Student Life had no editorial responsibility to tamper with this election. -William J Kimmerle Class of 2007

Student Life Should Equally

Cover All Student Union Candidates Dear Editor: Josh Malina’s column “Voting Day” in the April 4 edition of Student Life in which he asks to vote for him and other candidates in the Student Union election was problematic in two ways. First, the piece was published after the campaign period for elections had already ended. Second, allowing one candidate the opportunity to advocate for his campaign with a column without offering the same to all others running gives that candidate an unfair advantage. I hope that Student Life will avoid such practices in future elections. -Brent Rubin Treasury Representative Elect

CORRECTIONS: In a Monday, April 9 article, “Equestrian team successful even against Division I rivals,” Student Life reported that Tori Fancher would be advancing to Zone competition. Fancher is no longer on the team and it is actually Tori Holekamp who will be advancing. Student Life regrets the error. In a Monday, April 9 editorial, “Thurtene needs reforms,” Student Life identified Satyam Khanna as the former fundraising chair for Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. He is in fact in the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity. Student Life regrets the error.


Senior Sports Editor / Trisha Wolf /




Men’s tennis wins sixth straight match BY JEFF LESSER SPORTS REPORTER After one postponement and other scheduling issues due to poor weather, the Washington University men’s tennis team won two more matches this past weekend to extend their overall record to 10-3 on the season. The 10th-ranked Bears defeated Wheaton College by a score of 7-2 at the Sunset Tennis Center on Saturday, before returning home Monday to knock off McKendree College for the Bears’ sixth straight win. Cold weather forced Redand-Green’s Saturday matchup indoors, as the match was relocated to the indoor Sunset venue instead of the outdoor Tao Tennis Center on Wash. U.’s campus. The match was relatively routine and the outcome was never in question with the Bears winning 7-2. The Red and Green lost at two out of nine positions for the first time since their winning streak began on March 17. The favored Bears took two out of three of the doubles matches. The first doubles tandem of sophomore Charlie Cutler and sophomore Chris Hoeland was the only Wash. U. pair to suffer defeat, as they lost by a score of 8-6 to Wheaton’s pairing of Joshua Williams and Cory Kraftson. “We were flat at [first] doubles,” said Washington University Head Coach Roger Follmer. “In an eight-game pro-set, you can’t come out flat. If you get down a break, especially indoors, that could be the match.” At singles, the fast indoor surface suited the 6’5’’ Williams’ attacking game perfectly. He kept his record for the day perfect, as the giant again conquered Cutler, winning 6-1, 6-4. “He really came into the

net a lot,” said Follmer. “He put a lot of pressure on Charlie.” Aside from these small setbacks, it was smooth sailing for the Bears for the rest of the weekend, as they did not lose a single other match against Wheaton. They went on to sweep McKendree Monday. Against McKendree, Cutler was able to regain his form on the outdoor home surface. Teaming again with Hoeland, the first doubles pairing knocked off Daniel Quinn and Caio Tortato, 8-4. Cutler then won a hard-fought battle at first singles, taking down the hard-hitting Quinn 6-4, 2-6 and 10-8 in the third set super tie-breaker. Freshman John Watts, the 10th-ranked player nationally in Division III, won his 11th straight match for Wash. U., defeating Tortato at second singles by a score of 6-3, 6-2. He had previously defeated Ian Kirchner of Wheaton, 6-3, 6-0, on Saturday. Watts also joined forces with junior Captain Charlie Howard against Wheaton at the third doubles spot, winning 8-2. Hoeland, freshman Danny Levy and Howard all extended their personal singles winning streaks to six matches, each winning twice on the weekend. At third, fourth and fifth singles, respectively, none suffered a single set in the two matches against Wheaton and McKendree. At sixth singles, sophomore Nirmal Choradia won his fifth straight match, first taking down Wheaton’s Graham Johnson, 6-0, 6-3, before winning by default on Monday. McKendree had to forfeit both sixth singles and third doubles, as they traveled to Wash. U. with only five players on their roster. Although the Bears were scheduled to play Maryville University this past Friday

BOX SCORES #10 Washington University 7, Wheaton College 2 April 7, 2007 at St. Louis, Mo. Singles competition 1. Joshua Williams (WHEATON) def. Charlie Cutler (WASHU) 6-1, 6-4 2. #10 John Watts (WASHU) def. Ian Kirchner (WHEATON) 6-3, 6-0 3. Chris Hoeland (WASHU) def. David Warren (WHEATON) 6-0, 6-1 4. Danny Levy (WASHU) def. Cory Kraftson (WHEATON) 6-2, 6-0 5. Charlie Howard (WASHU) def. Alex Ziccardi (WHEATON) 6-2, 6-0 6. Nirmal Choradia (WASHU) def. Graham Johnson (WHEATON) 6-0, 6-3

Doubles competition 1. Joshua Williams/Cory Kraftson (WHEATON) def. Charlie Cutler/Chris Hoeland (WASHU) 8-6 2. Nirmal Choradia/Trevis Bowman (WASHU) def. Michael Simmerman/Ian Kirchner (WHEATON) 8-4 3. Charlie Howard/John Watts (WASHU) def. David Warren/Kevin Graham (WHEATON) 8-2 MARY BUTKUS | WUSTL PHOTO SERVICES

Sophomore Charlie Cutler hits a backhand at a recent home match. The men’s team is ranked 10th nationally and is 10-3 on the season. night at the Tao Tennis Center, the match was postponed due to cold and windy conditions. The match will be replayed Wednesday at 6:30 p.m., also at the Tao Tennis Center. The Bears’ season continues with a doubleheader Saturday, with matches against Coe College at 9 a.m. and University of Texas-Tyler at 3 p.m. Both matches will be held at the Dwight Davis Tennis Center in Forest Park. They conclude the week-

end with a UAA conference showdown against the University of Chicago on Sunday at 10 a.m. at the Tao Tennis Center. “Chicago will be a big conference rivalry,” said Follmer. “We are not going to overlook them because they beat us two years ago. They will be a good test.” After winning six straight contests and nine of their past 10 overall, perhaps a test is just what Wash. U. needs.

#10 Washington University 9, McKendree College 0 April 9, 2007 at St. Louis, Mo. Singles competition 1. Charlie Cutler (WASHU) def. Daniel Quinn (MCK) 6-4, 2-6, 10-8 2. #10 John Watts (WASHU) def. Caio Tortato (MCK) 6-3, 6-2 3. Chris Hoeland (WASHU) def. Daniel Gonzalez (MCK) 6-4, 6-3 4. Danny Levy (WASHU) def. Ben Schloesser (MCK) 6-0, 6-2 5. Charlie Howard (WASHU) def. Andres Marquez (MCK) 6-1, 6-2 6. Nirmal Choradia (WASHU) def. No player (MCK) by default

Doubles competition 1. Charlie Cutler/Chris Hoeland (WASHU) def. Daniel Quinn/Caio Tortato (MCK) 8-4 2. Nirmal Choradia/Mark Partridge (WASHU) def. Daniel Gonzalez/Ben Schloesser (MCK) 8-4 3. Slavi Fildish/Danny Levy (WASHU) def. Andres Marquez/No player (MCK) by forfeit *STUDENTS * GRAD STUDENTS * *FELLOWS * INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS* INCOME TAX RETURNS • • • • •

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MUSIC EDITOR Conor Oberst is at it again, and not in all the best ways. “Cassadaga,” Bright Eyes’ tenth album release, starts off just as “I’m Wide Awake and It’s Morning;” with a distorted, obscure and a bit unsettling spoken word intro. Sadly, unlike previous uses, it falls flat. “Clairaudients (Kill or Be Killed)” is over six minutes long and could easily stand to shed a few minutes. There seems to be little point to the woman ranting about what we should be doing in order to understand the psychic nature of Cassadaga (Cassadaga, Fla. is the ‘Psychic Center of the World’). The album is riddled with love songs. Not in the way anyone is used to, but in a very Oberstian way. “Make a Plan to Love Me” is sadly not one of these. The song is trite with each few lines begging the unnamed recipient to do exactly the title. Lame-o-la. The main problem is, after songs like “Bowl of Oranges” and “Lover I Don’t Have to Love,” no one is going to buy into a song as conventional and scripted as this.

Luckily, “No One Would Riot for Less” redeems the entire love song genre. The song describes the coming of death due to, among others, “a holy wall of fire.” Yet, in the middle of running he wakes his love. “So wake, baby, wake / but leave that blanket round you / there’s nowhere as safe / I’m leaving this place / there is nothing I’m / planning to take / just you, just you.” “No One Would Riot for Less” brings to mind the sad songs of “Fevers and Mirrors,” despite the full sound of haunting backing vocals from a variety of artists. One of the more remarkable aspects of this album is Oberst’s ability to match the pared down sounds of folksy middle-America he’s been known for with the full orchestral sounds provided by the arrangements of Nate Walcott. On this album more than any other, it is obvious why Walcott and Mike Mogis are allowed to be the only other permanent members of Bright Eyes. The finale is well deserving of its place. “Lime Tree” manages to hold on to the mood of the album while baring more of Oberst’s personal thoughts on private matters. The sound itself

drives home the mood of the song, which is made evident in the second line, “Since the operation I heard you’re breathing just for one.” Though, truth be told, the LP takes a bit to grow on you, which is not to say it isn’t worth the wait. Overall the release promised more, the first new material since Jan. 2005, the expectation of the true passion and soul like we saw in “Lifted, or the Story is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground” was warranted. Listeners wanted that same catchy flare. Bright Eyes no longer wraps the pure talent in a listener-friendly package. The artists seem content to let each nugget of musical happiness be found in its own time. While this is sometimes dissatisfying, being spoon-fed is relaxing.

MOVIE EDITOR Jennifer Lopez has, at this point, become most famous for being famous, despite (or perhaps because of) trying to sell us every possible kind of marketable product. She has released a new CD entitled “Como Ama Una Mujer,” (“How a Woman Loves”) which is more product than it is anything else. Instead of creating an album of hip-hoppy bubblegum like many of her previous efforts, or pairing up with rap artists to create enjoyable if not great singles, Lopez has compiled eleven boring ballads with barely any beat. There a few songs that seem as if at any moment they could get started by breaking into an enjoyable rhythm—“Porque Te Marchas” (the Spanish version of “[Can’t Believe] This Is Me”), and “¿Que Hiciste?” (“What Did You Do?”), the single, are two—but none manage to go anywhere. “Adios” (be serious, you know what adios means), the final song, is recorded with a live audience and is perhaps the album’s best, but it’s the excitement of the audience that does this, and they could have done it with or without J. Lo. The album does pose a few important questions: how, as the title suggests, does a woman love? And out of all our wise popular culture personalities, is J. Lo, with her pristine dating record, the one to tell us? What, as the single queries,

did you do? But the main question the album begs: just why is she so famous? She seems to have little talent and that’s generously given. The album was put together by a bevy of producers and arrangers, and without her husband’s generous back-up vocals, Lopez might actually have to display some singing ability, since she doesn’t seem to be involved with much else. When she is singing


Jennifer Lopez visits fans at F.Y.E. in the Bronx to celebrate the release of her first Spanish album, “Como Ama Una Mujer.” alone, her voice is heavily electronically enhanced, especially in the synthesized “Tú” (“You”), where her vocals sound like nothing that could possibly emanate from any human mouth. The lyrics are, unfortunately, entirely in Spanish;

Do Not Disturbia


Bright Eyes Cassadaga Rating: ★★★✬✩ Tracks to download: “No One Would Riot for Less,” “Lime Tree” For fans of: Elliot Smith, Arcade Fire, Desaparecidos

Jennifer Lopez: ‘Como Ama Una Mujer’ BY CECILIA RAZAK

that ‘unfortunately,’ unfortunately, has nothing to do with English speakers missing the beauty and introspection of the words. Most of them translate roughly into soap opera drivel (“Yesterday we promised to conquer the whole world / Yesterday you promised me this love would be eternal… You forgot love was what’s important”), and on the rare occasions they don’t sound as if they’ve come straight from a telenovela, they’re dull. But the most unfortunate thing about the Spanish language choice is Lopez’s lackluster pronunciation, which, while not bad, is far from her husband’s or any native speaker’s. It sounds deadeningly rehearsed and the lilt of the language manages not to shine through in her American mouth. In the end, “Como Ama Una Mujer” is nothing more than a bland attempt at something else for us to buy. The most impressive thing Lopez manages is her photo on the front cover, and that takes no talent, just good genes. Which…I think Lopez has a new line of coming out this fall.

Kale (Shia LaBeouf) and his mother, Julie (Carrie-Anne Moss) stumble into a horrifying predicament in the thriller “Disturbia.” BY CECILIA RAZAK MOVIE EDITOR Hitchcock it’s not, but the new, mostly sleepy thriller “Disturbia” (D.J. Caruso’s modernized version of “Rear Window”) delivers more than it promises, despite its flagging final act. Kale (Shia LaBeouf) is the perfect teenager until his father is killed in a freak car accident. A bout of teenage angst-filled rage leads to Kale punching his Spanish teacher in the face and a judge sentencing him to house arrest, complete with a blinking ankle bracelet and a preternaturally socially interactive view from his window. He quickly befriends the gorgeous girl next door (a bland Sarah Roemer) and obsessively watches Mr. Turner (David Morse), who does some spooky things involving mowing his lawn, bringing beautiful redheads home and, as Kale assumes, murdering them. The wonderful element of uncertainty and unreliability that Hitchcock and James Stewart bring to the 1954 version is missing, but only barely, and what the film lacks in intense introspection, it makes up in teenage frivolity.

The film takes place in lush suburbs and is quite aptly named. The original is set in a city, with one big courtyard simultaneously housing and putting on display the sordid lives of its inhabitants and their actions, all visible from one vantage point. Kale must travel from window to window to view different neighbors in awkwardly positioned settings and as he traverses the distances of his house we are reminded that he is living in less of a suburb, and more of a dist-urb. The film loses something in the shift of setting, but does, in transplanting itself to the new living environment of the typical American citizen, remain timely. It’s also littered with all kinds of beeping, blinking gadgets—if only L. B. Jefferies had had a cell phone and streaming video. Along with the gadgets and new digs comes endless product placement. When Kale can no longer play his Xbox™, download iTunes™ on his iMac™ or fiddle with his handheld Playstation™, he decides to glue together a Twinkie™ tower with Elmer’s™ glue in front of his Sony™ TV while his new neighbors take furniture out of their Mayflower™ moving

van. If it’s in frame and isn’t a person, it has a label on it. Despite the pandering, the film holds together well, with excellent pacing, richly colored, luxuriously composed interiors and fine acting from LeBeouf, a highly domestisized CarrieAnne Moss, and Morse, a character actor continually hired to supply “creepy.” It is engrossing and frivolous fun—that is, until the third act. It seems as if suddenly the filmmakers realized they had to somehow differentiate “Disturbia” from the countless other films involving pointed voyeurism. After a jarring shift in perspective, Mr. Turner makes a complete departure of character and sense and the film devolves into a teen slasher movie. And what a shame, after such an arresting build-up.

Disturbia Rating: ★★★✬✩ Directed by: D.J. Caruso Starring: Shia LaBeouf, David Morse, Carrie-Anne Moss Release Date: April 13, 2007

Jennifer Lopez Como Ama Una Mujer Rating: ✬✩✩✩✩ Tracks to download: “Adios,” “Que Hiciste?” For fans of: Poorly spoken Spanish, Ben Affleck

Come together for GZA BY BRIAN STITT SENIOR CADENZA EDITOR A genius is going to be on campus tonight. To be specific, this genius is The Genius a.k.a Gary Grice or GZA, most famously of the Wu Tang Clan. His show at the Gargoyle tonight (doors at 7:30 p.m., show at 8) will prove to be an excellent showcase of hip-hop, even music, at its best. Tickets are available for $5 with a Wash. U. ID ($15 without) at the Edison Theatre Box Office or the door. His involvement with one of the greatest rap groups of all time notwithstanding, GZA has distinguished himself as one of the premiere MCs on the scene, with classics like the legendary 1995



Bright Eyes: ‘Cassadaga’ BY ELIZABETH OCHOA


release “Liquid Swords” and his chess-themed concept album “Grandmasters” with DJ Muggs from Cyprus Hill. His lyrical skills put him in the upper echelon of rappers working today, making a live show for the cost of five dollars one of the best entertainment bargains available. Cadenza has a few (nonchemically based) suggestions for preparing oneself to properly enjoy tonight’s concert. First, skip all your classes. If you’re in a class at the moment, finish the Sudoku, then fake a stomach virus. Second, find a nerdy friend and borrow a copy of “Shogun Assassin,” the samurai movie sampled heavily on “Liquid Swords.” Slip this in the DVD player and let the blood fly. Third, during the dialogue-heavy

exposition scenes, set up a playlist featuring some of GZA’s greatest hits. Don’t limit yourself to solo works (although “Shadowboxin’,” “Labels” and “Amplified Sample” are essentials) but branch out to GZA-heavy Wu Tang tracks like “Clan in Da Front” or “Radioactive” (Four Assassins). But your fourth and final task, and by far the most important, is to get hyped any way you can. Run a few laps, slam your hand in the door, replace all sustenance with Chewy Spree and Jolt Cola, anything you must do to get your blood flowing and adrenaline pumping. Because you can be sure GZA will bring mad energy to the stage, and the Wash. U. community needs to respond appropriately.

YOUR FUTURE IS WITHIN REACH And so is the money to pay for it College expenses should not be a roadblock for your future. Stay on track with an alternative loan from Campus Door. Get up to $250,000 to pay for college and make no payments until 12 months after you graduate. Apply online today at to receive an approval usually in less than a minute. Spend your time planning for your future, not worrying about how to pay for it.

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All loans are subject to credit approval. Programs, rates, terms and conditions are subject to change without notice. Other restrictions apply. Trade/Servicemarks are the property of Campus Door Inc. and/or its affiliates. Lender is Lehman Brothers Bank, FSB. ©2007 Campus Door Inc. All Rights Reserved. Equal Opportunity Lender.


Senior Cadenza Editor / Brian Stitt /



n. a technically brilliant, sometimes improvised solo passage toward the close of a concerto, an exceptionally brilliant part of an artistic work

arts & entertainment

The 6 Degrees of Conor Oberst

The bands they worked in

The people and bands of Saddle Creek record label

Little Brazil Son Ambulence

Corey Broman

Austin Britton

Matt Maginn

Tim Kasher

Cursive Slowdown Virginia Good Life

Landon Hedges

89 Cubs Desaparecidos

Steve Pedersen

Commander Venus

Conor Oberst

Park Ave. Magic Kiss Tilly and the Wall

Matt Baum

The Faint

Todd Fink


Matt Bowen Neeley Jenkins Jamie Williams

Kianna Alarid Jenn Bernard

Inbreeding in Omaha: Saddle Creek in Review BY DAVID KAMINSKY MUSIC EDITOR

The Beginning Our story begins in 1993 when 13-year-old Conor Oberst’s demo tape became the fi rst release of the now famous Saddle Creek (then called Lumberjack) Records. In 1994, Saddle Creek put out their third release, Slowdown Virginia’s “Dead Space,” which featured Tim Kasher as the lead. The year 1995 saw the demise of Slowdown Virginia and the creation of Commander Venus, which combined Kasher and Oberst with help from other Omaha natives Todd Fink and Matt Bowen. Before their formation, Oberst had only played solo and initially had trouble playing with a band.

All Together Now Commander Venus released “Do You Feel at Home?” in 1995 as Saddle Creek’s sixth release and then signed to Grass Records, for whom they recorded “The Uneventful Vacation” in July of 1997. Oberst considered “The Uneventful Vacation” to be, “somewhat of a failure musically,” but the album received college airplay and positive reviews, including one by “Scratch Magazine” that said, “If Commander Venus is any indication of what’s to come from the second generation of indie rock, then the future looks bright indeed.” Commander Venus, however, started to fall apart as Bowen quit. Kasher followed to pursue possibilities with his other band, Cursive. Commander Venus carried on for another nine months touring the east coast as Oberst began to feel typecast by the band and called it quits. “We got tagged as an emo band right off the bat. A lot of

cool bands were playing that style of music, then a huge number of bands started tagging along, and suddenly everyone was getting thrown in the emo category. These days, I think of emo as a negative term,” said Oberst.

From Park Ave. to the Wall Before Oberst’s split from Commander Venus, he began playing in an indie pop band with Omaha natives Clark Baechle, Neely Jenkins, Jamie Williams and Jenn Bernard. They began playing together in January of 1996 out of a desire to write pop music; however, none of their female members knew how to play her respective instruments. The band lasted two-and-ahalf years, playing only 10-15 shows and recording just a 7” split with the Wrens (which became the 14th release of Saddle Creek Records) and a full-length during their existence. They broke up when Jamie moved to London to work in art, thus spawning the title of their 1999 album, “When Jamie Went to London… We Broke Up.” The album was recorded on a 4-track before Jamie left and was originally made just for the band to have for themselves. When Jamie returned from London she reconnected with Jenkins. The two of them along with Kianna Alarid, Derek Pressnall and Nick White formed Tilly and the Wall in 2001 and gained notoriety for substituting Jamie’s tap shoes for traditional drums. They recorded their fi rst release, “Woo!” in Oberst’s garage and distributed it at shows. In 2004, they recorded “Wild Like Children” which became the flagship release on Oberst’s Team Love label. They followed this release with “Bottoms of Barrels” in 2006,

which was also released on Team Love and played a show at the Gargoyle on March 29th, 2007.

From the Ashes Rises the Faint In 1995, Clark Baechle (of Park Ave.), Todd Fink (of Commander Venus), Joel Petersen and Conor Oberst (who left shortly after joining) formed the band Norman Bailer. They signed to Saddle Creek Records and released a few singles that made them extremely popular in Omaha but did not achieve widespread sales at the national level. Later they changed their name to The Faint and fi rst established a small, national fan base in 1998 with the addition of Matt Bowen (also of Commander Venus) and the release of “Media.” After the album’s release, however, Bowen left the band and was replaced by Jacob Thiele who helped develop the dance- and technoinfluenced sound of their next album and underground hit, “Blank-Wave Arcade.” They achieved widespread popularity, commercial success and critical acclaim with their third full-length “Danse Macabre,” noted for the addition of Dapose, a death metal guitarist formerly of the band LEAD. Since then, they’ve released one other album, “Wet From Birth,” and are now rumored to be leaving Saddle Creek Records and working with notable producer Rick Rubin for their next album. They’ve also been touring again and recently performed at the Pageant.

Cursive Brings Kasher the Good Life

After the demise of Slowdown Virginia, Kasher formed the band Cursive with former bandmates Matt Maginn and Steve Pedersen and the addition of Clint Schnase on drums. He played with Cursive and Commander Venus concurrently between 1995 and 1997 until he left Commander Venus, and Cursive released “Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes.” In 1998, Cursive broke up after a couple of years touring. They re-formed a year later, replacing Pedersen with Ted Stevens (formerly of Lullaby for the Working Class). They gained much attention from fans and critics alike when they released “Domestica,” a concept album detailing the hate and deceit inherent in a divorce, on Saddle Creek in 2000. In the summer of 2001 they recorded “Burst and Bloom,” their fi rst with the addition of Gretta Cohn on cello. They followed this in 2003 with “The Ugly Organ,” a concept album that details the story of the “Ugly Organist” and the lust, love and empty sex he experiences throughout his life. The album met rave reviews from Rolling Stone who gave it a 4star rating and the Alternative Press who gave it a perfect five out of five. Their fan base grew with the immense critical acclaim and their spot on the Cure’s 2004 Curiosa tour, brought to them by the success of “The Ugly Organ.” After the tour they went on hiatus and returned in the summer of 2006 with their fi fth full-length, “Happy Hollow.” “Happy Hollow” was markedly different from “The Ugly Organ” due to the departure of Gretta Cohn on cello and the addition of a five-piece horn section. Although also a concept album, its focus revolved around a small town and its inhabitants and dealt with subjects such as religion and

hypocrisy. While working with Cursive, Kasher formed The Good Life in 2000. Initially a solo project, it quickly grew to become an entirely separate band. They’ve released three full-length records, “Novena on a Nocturn” (2000), “Black Out” (2002) and “Album of the Year” (2004), all of which have focused on various aspects of relationships.

Oberst Shows His Bright Eyes Bright Eyes started as Conor Oberst’s side project. When playing with Commander Venus he reportedly recorded 70 songs of acoustic solo material on his father’s four track. When Commander Venus split, Bright Eyes became Oberst’s main focus and in 1998 he released 20 of the original 70 songs as the fi rst official Bright Eyes album, “A Collection of Songs Written and Recorded 1995-1997.” Later in 1998, he released “Letting Off the Happiness” on Saddle Creek Records, which featured appearances by members of Lullaby of the Working Class, Neutral Milk Hotel, Of Montreal and Park Ave. This release set the precedent for Oberst relying heavily on guest appearances in Bright Eyes records. He followed “Happiness” in 2000 with “Fevers and Mirrors,” which included a mock radio interview in the middle of “An Attempt to Tip the Scales.” The interview features Todd Fink (of Commander Venus and the Faint) doing an impression of Oberst while reading a script Oberst had written. When asked about it, Oberst told, “It was a way to make fun of ourselves because the record is such a downer. I mean, that’s one part of who I am but I also like laughing...” “Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the

Ground” came in 2002 and Bright Eyes became one of the year’s most celebrated “new” artists. The album brought them national attention from the New York Times, Time Magazine, Rolling Stone and Spin and has sold over 250,000 copies. It was, at the time, Saddle Creek’s most commercially successful release. During this same time period Oberst formed a side project, Desaparecidos, which, in contrast with Bright Eyes, had a raw, punk rock sound. Their lyrics were political in nature and songs focused on topics such as the state of American affairs and the lengths people will go to just to get money. The band broke up in 2003 after a tour with Jimmy Eat World and a feature on MTV’s “You Hear it First.” Rumors state that Oberst broke up the band because they were becoming too popular. Oberst did, however, go on to continue with Bright Eyes and on January, 25, 2005 released two albums with distinctly different sounds: the folksy “I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning” and the synthesizer-heavy “Digital Ash in a Digital Urn.” Both albums were received with commercial and critical success. This brings us up to date, where we are met with the latest release by Conor Oberst, Saddle Creek’s original superstar. From the beginning, Oberst has always been their main attraction, with their fi rst release being his fi rst demo tape, their latest (103rd) release, “Cassadaga,” being his seventh release under the Bright Eyes moniker, and seemingly everything in between being in some way touched by him. As you listen to any of these artists’ albums, in particular the recent pinnacle, “Cassadaga,” be mindful of the long and musically incestuous history of the Omaha music scene and Saddle Creek Records.




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ANNOUNCING BE YOUR OWN boss. Make an extra $500/month part-time. Visit /stephena or call Steve at 800310-6217. FREE RENT AND utilities in exchange for loving care of my four dogs and home. Wonderful log house in country with jaw dropping view. Very private, easy commute to campus. Prefer artist, writer, tree hugger. Move in first week of July, stay till first week of November. Please, sober, responsible. dog lover only. 636-671 0690. GIRL FRIDAY WANTED. Run errands, bathe 2 big, but sweet, dogs, clean house & office. 8 hrs wk to start could be more, dep. on skill set. PLAY SPORTS! HAVE FUN! SAVE MONEY! Maine camp needs fun loving counselors to teach all land, adventure & water sports. Great Summer! Call 888-844-8080, apply: SUMMER CAMP COUNSELORS needed for premier Jewish Sleep-a-way camp in Southern California. Positions available for talented, energetic, and fun loving students as general and specialty counselors. GREAT SALARIES, room & board. July 8th-Aug 20th. For more information and to apply: w w w . c a m p 858-535-1995.

MILDRED LANE KEMPER Art Museum hiring now for summer. Flexible schedule offered. Email with the subject line ‘Summer position’ for more info.

1/2 BLOCK TO dowtown Clayton. Bright 2 BR apt, completely updated. Garage. Non-smoking building. $875. Please call 314725-0917. 2BD, 1 BTH, sunroom, dining room, living room. hardwood floors. eat-in kitchen. w/d. great landlord. $700/mo. 10 min walk from Hilltop. Gold line. metro lines. Avail. May. Email 3 BEDROOM 1.5 BATH APARTMENT. Half block from RED line shuttle. Many amenities! For more info w w w.homeandapar Tom 314.409.2733 3 BR, 2 full bath on blue Shuttle, garage and off street parking, new kitchen, many amenities! For more info w w w.homeandapar Tom 314.409.2733 CLAYTON, U. CITY LOOP, CWE and Dogtown. Beautiful studios, 1, 2 bedrooms. Quiet buildings. $425-$750. Call 314- 7255757.

CLEAN QUIET SPACIOUS 1 bedroom apt. Central air, hardwood floors, dishwasher, washer/dryer, off street parking. Smoke-free. No pets $1600 314-3691016. D E B A L I V E R E NEIGHBORHOOD. 2 bedrooms & 1 bathroom. Walk to metro and shuttle. Washer & dryer. Off-street parking. Heat and A/C. 314-226-3067. GREAT APARTMENT VERY close to campus available June 1. 7012 Forsyth. Apt 1E. 2 bedroom, dishwasher, washer/dryer. C o n t a c t : SOULARD APTS. 4 BD, 1800 sf. & 2900 sf. Must See. All have granite countertops, cherry cabinets, stainless steel app, ceramic tile in K’s and B’s, hardwood floors, ample closets, W/D, bsmt storage, beautiful enclosed courtyard, Largest Unit has gas fireplace, Jacuzzi, & extra lg. BD’rms. Perfect For Shared Living. $1700, $2200. (314) 565-0552. UNIVERSITY CITY LOOP. Spacious 3BR apartment behind Cicero’s, hardwood floors, C/A, W/D, Parking $1,100. 314-608-2692. UNIVERSITY CITY LOOP. 3BR 1800sqft Luxury Apartment, Granite counter tops, W/D in the Apartment. The Best in the Loop. $1,695. 314-608-2692.

SPRING SUBLET AVAILABLE. 5867 Nina Place (off Waterman), 3br/ 2bth, laundry, off-street parking, big kitchen, spacious, wood floors, near WU, furnished.Contact SUMMER SUBLET 2 Bedroom apartment at 6632 Wash Ave. partially furnished. $950/ month plus utilities. Contact SUMMER SUBLET- 6157 Waterman Blvd, 3 bedroom 2 bathroom apt. $492/ room plus utilities. Close to campus and Metro. Contact for more info. SUMMER SUBLET. 1 or 2 roommates needed for summer and/or fall. 4 bedroom. Large kitchen. 60xx Kingsbury. Rent: $262.50/mo plus utilities. Email: if interested. SUMMER SUBLET: 1-2 roommates needed. Available May-August. 3 bedroom, 2 bath, large kitchen. 1.5 miles from campus. Rent: $366/month plus utilities per person. Email SUMMER SUBLET: 1-3 Bedrooms, 2 Bath apartment available May-August. Short walk to campus, Metrolink, S40, bus stops. Large rooms, kitchen, washer/dryer. Email

SUMMER SUBLET: 2 bedroom, corner of Big Bend and Forsyth. Contact Ben @ 908.812.5488.

$5000 PAID. EGG DONORS. +Expenses. N/smokers, ages 19-29, SAT>1100, ACT>24,GPA>3.0. Reply to: 2 CLEAN, RESPONSIBLE female students looking to sublet a 2 bdr apartment for May-August. prefer location near transport to campus. Email lmsilver@artsci. EARN $2500+MONTHLY AND more to type simple ads online. WASH U MEAL points. WIlling to pay $.60 per point for up to 300 points. Contact

ANNOUNCING WASH U STUDY recruiting users of prescription stimulants, sedatives, or painkillers when not, more often or in larger amounts than prescribed. 90 minutes paid. Contact Marisa (314-2862256 or Rxdrugstudy@epi.

PRINCETON PH. D. in theoretical physics, Washington University Professor of Physics offers tutoring service to high school and/ or college students in mathematics and/or physics. Call Frank at 314-569-0715 if you have questions. Our office is centrally located at 8600 Delmar Blvd., Room 218, University City (just off I 170). We charge $50.00 per hour. Bring your textbooks and we will work through them. We look forward to seeing you.

REWARD. LOST MICHAEL Kors watch in AC Fitness Center. White leather band. Contact Jennifer to claim reward. 770-891-0467. SIGNIFICANT REWARD. LOST masonic ring. Yellow gold and ruby. Turn into WUPD and contact Tyler Merchant to claim reward. 3 1 4 . 2 5 5 . 8 4 0 3 . No questions asked.

FOR SALE: BURLEY Bike Trailer: 2 seater, pull behind bike. Additional flip-down wheel to push as a stroller. $150. Call Eileen 314-5043487.

FURNISHED 3BR APARTMENT in DeMun neighborhood. You rent the apt, we sell the furniture. Items available for sale w/o rent. Call 301-461-3334 or email adelcast@artsci. for more information. HUGE MOVING SALE! 7040 Ethel Avenue (off McCausland by Del Taco) Saturday and Sunday, April 14 and 15, 7:30 AM to 5 PM. Beautiful quality furniture, rugs, movies, CDs, lamps, dishes, prints, etc. Please call 303-9222 after 5PM with any questions. UP TO 250 meal points for sale at a discount! :-) Make an offer to 502-314-0484 ASAP! WASH U MEAL Points for sale. Up to 300 available. Very reasonable pricing. Email if interested.

AUTOS 05 JETTA 4DR GL 2.0L 4cyl, red. Excellent condition, less than 18000 miles, 5 s p d , great MPG, inspection+etc current, all standard features. All papers provided. $ 1 9 , 8 0 0 / b o .

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an edition of Studlife view it at

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By Michael Mepham Level: 1




Complete the grid so each row, column and 3-by3 box (in bold borders) contains every digit 1 to 9. For strategies on how to solve Sudoku, visit

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7620 Forsyth Boulevard, Clayton



Student Life | April 11, 2007  


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