the guide F R I DAY, F E B R UA RY 1 7 , 2 0 1 7
ILLUSTRATION BY GRACE CHUNG AND MINA LEE/THE HOYA,
GUIDE Jamie Lee Talks Weddings Stand-up comedian Jamie Lee discusses lowering the stakes for wedding planning. B4
Darker, but Better “Fifty Shades Darker” is a fitting addition to the franchise, improving upon its predecessor. B6
Alfie’s Gets It Right The Park View restaurant serves up authentic Asian fare at an affordable price. B5
A Brilliant Debut Alternative R&B singer-songwriter Samphas released his debut album, “Process,” to acclaim. B7
SPORTS Hoyas Drop Opener
The men’s lacrosse team fell to High Point University this past Tuesday in its season opener. B8
White Breaks Record Junior Joe White broke the school record in the 800-meter last weekend at the Iowa State Classic. B10
friday, February 17, 2017
The Georgetown neighborhood has strong ties to the black community, dating back to Georgetown’s days as a tobacco port in 1800. However, beginning in the 1990s, Georgetown’s demographics have shifted from predominantly black to predominantly non-black, paralleling changes in the greater D.C. area.
Crumbling Character: A Gentrified Georgetown
Hannah Urtz Hoya Staff Writer
A quarter of a century ago, a stroll down M Street would reveal rows of highly specialized boutique shops, restaurants and vendors. Crowds lured in from across the city and the country filled the sidewalks, ready to experience an atmosphere unique to this small corner of northwest Washington, D.C. A distinct feeling of whimsy and quirk characterized this iconic place, home to many who had lived here for years. Much has changed in the neighborhood over the past two decades. Mega-chain stores have replaced the one-of-a-kind trinket shops, younger generations have pushed out older residents and Georgetown, in addition to the city as a whole, has become much whiter. Though the changes in Georgetown reflect a broader trend across both D.C. and U.S. cities, they intertwine and impact one another in noteworthy ways with lasting consequences for the community. Georgetown saw its first major wave of demographic shifts in the years following World War II, but the area really began to gain traction in the mid-’90s with an influx of predominately white families and entrepreneurs moving into the area. In fact, former Georgetown University professors Kathleen Mezie Lesko, Valerie Babb and Carrol R. Gibbs highlight the changing population in their book “Black Georgetown Remembered,” reissued last February and originally published in 1991, to both celebrate and explore the rich history of the Georgetown neighborhood
as an epicenter for black life. These demographic changes have continued over the years, leaving many to wonder where “chocolate city” has gone. While Georgetown’s demographic shift from predominantly black to predominantly nonblack began years ago, it was only in 2011 that Washington, D.C.’s population underwent the same shift, and dipped below 50 percent black for the first time in 50 years. This was the first time in decades that the percentage of black people living in Washington dropped to such a low level.
We need not forget about people that have been here for a long time and kept D.C. afloat.” BRIAN MCCABE (SFS ’02) Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
Georgetown sociology professor Brian McCabe (SFS ’02) attributes the demographic shift to a number of factors, the most significant of which is the large influx of young and predominantly white people in the past 20 years. “There’s an interest again to live in cities. It’s cool and hip to live in cities. You see a lot of young people moving to cities in a shifting
GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY PRESS
Although once a social and commercial hub, Georgetown is now shadowed by the burgeoning development of neighborhoods like Adams Morgan and Shaw.
demographic where people moving in tend to be whiter, wealthier and tend to be more well-educated,” McCabe said. These changing demographics are not the sole cause of Georgetown’s rapid change, according to Georgetown history professor Marcia Chatelain. “When people think about gentrification, they often imagine affluent buyers buying houses and the influx of stores and restaurants that cater to that clientele,” Chatelain said in an email to The Hoya. “What we often lose sight of, is that colleges, universities, as well as their hospitals and athletic facilities can lead to serious displacement and gentrification. ... When we think about the politics of property, labor and policing, we see how colleges and universities can adversely impact neighborhoods and communities.” The shifting population does not just impact the racial and socioeconomic breakdown — it also has serious implications for the Georgetown residential and business community. Nick Wasylczuk has owned Just Paper and Tea on P Street NW for the past 27 years, watching the city change and grow over the years. According to Wasylczuk, the Georgetown neighborhood was once known as the social and shopping hub of the city. Today, he feels differently. “Every store you see here on M Street, you see everywhere else. Georgetown used to be the major area if you wanted to come into D.C. and shop. It’s no longer that way,” Wasylczuk said. The shopping district started to see a real change in the late 1990s and early 2000s, as landlords started charging higher rents that made it difficult for smaller, specialty shops to stay afloat. Large chain stores like Nike and Patagonia moved in, able to take on the high rent and a homogenizing market of mass consumption. “Georgetown has really lost its ability to attract merchants that want to provide something a little different, based on the fact that the big box stores have moved in and taken over,” Wasylczuk said. “Nothing is really that unique.” Concurrently, many of the bars and nightlife options began to move out, in part due to the increasing rent, as well as a concerted effort by neighborhood officials to clean up the local area and improve the relationship between the university and residential community. “It’s quiet in Georgetown now. They got rid of those rowdy bars and whatnot, and to be honest, I kind of miss some of that, because that was sort of the element here,” Wasylczuk said. However, much of the change in Georgetown’s reputation is also due to factors outside of the neighborhood itself. As McCabe, who graduated from Georgetown in 2002, points out, many of the transplants to the city are moving into neighborhoods where they otherwise wouldn’t have lived in years past, like Shaw and the U Street area. “They’re moving into neighborhoods that they probably wouldn’t have lived in 20 or 30 years ago. I remember living in Shaw right after college, and it was way past where anybody would have lived at that time, but now it’s all the rage,” McCabe said. As more and more young people move into these areas, they become more expensive, densely populated and full of chain bars, restaurants and shops. Consequently, the need to come to places like Georgetown, which allows more standard big-businesses to move in each year, dwindles. Wasylczuk also attributes the change in Georgetown’s reputation as a social hub to the expansion of nightlife activities in other parts of the city. With the development of areas like H and U streets, and the Dupont Circle area, there are now far more nightlife options in the surrounding area.
“U Street corner was more of a prostitute and drug area, and now that’s just become a hot area for young people in the 20 to 35 age range, and that keeps them from coming to Georgetown. Life has really moved out that way,” Wasylczuk said. Other long-term shopkeepers and residents have also noted these same developments. Ed Solomon at Anthony’s Tuxedos and Wedding Creations has been on P Street for over 32 years, and has seen these changes unfold across the city. “Although the neighborhood as a whole is definitely seeing a transformation with retail, I think that has more to do with the internet and the way millennials buy now. But we do see a lot more younger people, in the 25 to 35 range, and I do think that’s reflective of what’s happening in the city. We’ve got lots of nightlife and lots of things to do where we didn’t before,” Solomon said. On the whole, the greater D.C. area has become more of a destination for younger people looking to start their lives in a new city, enticed by the up-and-coming restaurants, art scene and bustling energy. While this, in turn, has caused the Georgetown neighborhood to lose its reputation as a distinct shopping and social location, it has opened up other parts of the city and garnered a more cosmopolitan and commercial identity.
It’s quiet in Georgetown now. They got rid of those rowdy bars and whatnot, and to be honest, I kind of miss some of that.” NICK WASYLCZUK Owner, Just Paper and Tea
However, these changes do come at a cost. While these shifting demographics tend to lead to faster urbanization and development, they also have the potential to further marginalize huge sections of the black population that have been here for centuries; according to “Black Georgetown Remembered,” Georgetown and its surrounding area had a black population of just above 5,000. What is cosmopolitan and fun for upper class, collegeeducated twentysomethings, may just amount to increased rent and a lack of affordable housing and shopping options for the rest of the DC population. McCabe sees this as the most significant challenge facing developing cities. “What can the city do to ensure that it’s both attractive to people that want to live here, but also to make sure that people who have lived here for a long time feel that they have a right to this place as well?” McCabe said. “That’s one of the fears that people have, with all this good stuff happening and people wanting to move back in, we need not forget about people that have been here a long time and kept D.C. afloat.” Ultimately, as the broader landscape of D.C. continues to change, the Georgetown neighborhood will continue to be affected by the rest of the city. In the meantime, shop owners like Solomon and Wasylczuk will do their best to keep the authentic character of Georgetown around. “What I don’t appreciate is the fact that they’ve homogenized so much of the city and so much of the town, that it’s like a mall, and not like the unique boutique area that it used to be,” Wasylczuk said. “That part I really miss, because it did give the flavor that you couldn’t find elsewhere.”
friday, FEBRUARY 17, 2017
Georgetown from afar
Late-Night Bonding at Epicurean
F ANNA KOVACEVICH/THE HOYA
Georgetown’s Black Movements Dance Theater is a self-producing dance company aiming to explore both dance as an essential art form and history, particularly regarding the evolution of the black community at Georgetown over the past 35 years.
Breaking Barriers Through Dance Dani Guerrero Hoya Staff Writer
In celebration of its 35th anniversary, Georgetown’s Black Movements Dance Theater presents “Defiance,” the company’s final production for the 2016-17 season. The dance concert, “an exploratory journey of truth and celebration,” will take place at 8:00 p.m. from Feb. 24 to 25 at the Gonda Theater. The self-producing company has celebrated both dance as a vital art form and the history of the black community in Georgetown for 35 years. Through forceful, poetic movements, “Defiance” is set to explore a series of issues in relation to the black experience. The concert moves from its exploration of difficult subjects, such as the examination of police brutality and racial inequality, to cheerful celebrations of boldness and grit. “We chose the theme ‘Defiance’ primarily because we were thinking about the state of black America in 2016. It was the height of the election season, coming right from the Olympics,” student codirector Elizabeth Erra (COL ’17) said. “We thought about different ways that African Americans and black people in general defied stereotypes, defied norms and set the stage for the upcoming year of 2017.” Additional inspiration came from the duality of challenge and success that minorities across the country experience. In terms of racial discrimination and prejudice, “Defiance” found its roots in a series of events that embodied both historic courageous attempts to challenge stereotypes and the prevailing difficulties that continue to surface. “The directors were also inspired by the new African American museum, and how the architecture of it is defiant in itself,” student dancer Madeleine Keefe (COL ’17) said. “After the election, there was a growing inspiration to continue with this theme and speak about against some of the current inequalities in terms not only of race but gender, socioeconomic backgrounds, etc.” Although “Defiance” stems from complex social discrepancies among Americans, as well as persisting issues of racial inequality, the directors emphasize the universal nature of the pieces. Erra said that audiences will be able to connect to the concert in a both a fundamental and a contextual level.
“You can think about defiance as anger, or as something empowering, defying your parents’ expectations. There are so many different interpretations to it,” said Erra. BMDT seeks to foster a dynamic conversation about topics that are often difficult to discuss openly. By using a universal medium, like dance, the company strives to create open dialogue, creating pieces that encourage people to talk to one another and to react to each other’s struggles with empathy. “We certainly don’t want to confine our concert to racial inequality. This is how group A feels and this is how group B feels, because that is not what our company is about,” student director Ashley Newman (COL ‘18) said. “We want to create dialogue between different groups, different minorities, and dance is one of the best ways to express distinct opinions and experiences.”
I want our message to resonate with everyone, no matter what your socio-economic background is.” ASHLEY NEWMAN (COL ’18) Student Director, “Defiance”
This unifying mission appears particularly relevant with regards to the increased levels of polarization and estrangement in America. “I think dance can speak to everybody. Everybody likes to watch dance; everybody loves to dance,” Newman said. “Especially in the current political situation of our country, I think it’s even more important to have these ways of expressing yourself. With the positivity effect, defiance is a very important idea right now. For a lot of people, this administration is a hard thing to watch, and standing against negativity and prejudice, becoming more politically active, those are acts of defiance too.” This anniversary concert draws its “defiance” from its founders — four black female students who knocked the existing barriers in Georgetown, creating an inclusive space that addressed their needs as both dancers and minority students. Artistic Director Alfreda Davis sees the preservation of such a bold legacy as one of BMDT’s
main goals as an institution. “The four courageous women who started this company wanted something that would reflect their story,” Davis said. “Everyone wants to be included; no one wants to be on the outside looking in, because, while we have similarities, we also have differences, and it felt that our voice wasn’t being projected, wasn’t being heard, and there wasn’t anything that represented them.” The concert features a commissioned piece by master artist and Alvin Ailey alum, Christopher Huggins. “Defiance” also includes works by guest artists, Levi Marsman and Mari Andrea Travis, Alfreda Davis and student choreographers. Student directors contributed with extraordinary pieces that discuss different forms of defiance. By merging Chinese traditional movements with contemporary dance, Joy Xinran Wang’s (COL ’19) piece includes themes access to education for women across the world. “Joy’s piece is about girls who don’t have access to education in different parts of the world,” Erra said. “It is about what it means to learn how to read and write, and that’s an act of defiance.” On the other hand, Ashley Newman’s (COL ’18) creation discusses the role of beauty standards in racial discussions in America. “Her work is really about loving yourself and finding confidence in who you are. She really speaks to the conversation of race, in terms of ‘if you are a particular race, love yourself as you are,’” Davis said. “Because everything is about how small you are, how thin you are, how straight your hair is, how tall you are, how short you are and that can become very dangerous.” Lastly, Davis points to “Defiance” as not only a beautiful art form to delight audiences but as a powerful medium for important messages. “I always want us to have a message. Dancing for fun is great, but, if you can walk away and feel good, feel inspired, or feel that you can carry that conversation somewhere else, then I feel that I’ve done my work,” Davis said. “I want our message to resonate with everyone, no matter what your socio-economic background is, no matter what your ethnicity is. Our message can resonate with whoever comes to our performances.” In short, as BMDT promises, “Defiance” will “lift the spirit, stir the soul, and open the mind.”
or Georgetown students, Epicurean and Company, better known as Epi, may simply be a last resort comfort food joint to visit with friends at 2 a.m., almost always after a disappointing night out. But as someone who does not go to Georgetown, and visits Epi for scrambled eggs at breakfast rather than late-night quesadillas, Epicurean and Company is a dining haven unparalleled across America. For starters, the location could not be better. Wedged between Darnall Hall and the medical facility, just a few steps away from the weekend madness at Henle, Epi draws in the average passerby with its large windows showing the promise of warm, ambient lighting — a refuge from the dark night. The restaurant is centered between a sports bar and a forthcoming noodle bar. A watering hole with soothing classical music, Epi is a late-night bastion of conversation between students who may not associate with one another during the day. Its inhabitants include a lively mix of first-years, interning residents and groups tumbling out of Ubers, ready to settle down for a postmidnight snack. Other groups of friends sit silently on their phones, simply texting stories of their late-night adventures to their group chats, in order to truly enjoy the full flavors of their meals.
Just as Georgetown is a school that garners international attention, Epicurean and Company is a restaurant with options from almost every corner of the world.
The cozy booths and large conjoined tables create the perfect space for new friendships, forged and lost by the time, to have shared a pizza. I have been lucky enough to overhear several of these conversations, through which I have picked up on the local lingo. Mostly, though, the spirited chatter surrounds classes, clubs and those unique travels and experiences that make the Hilltop such an exciting place to be. The food at Epi is indulgent, as the restaurant name suggests. There is the everdifficult choice between the buffet or grill. Personally, I take my chances with the buffet, since I do not know how to work the automated ordering system, with its endless receipts. At the buffet, I recommend the lightest of the plate options, which is the plastic tray with three dividers. Because cost is determined by the ounce, every sliver off allows one to pack on more rice and chicken. Just as Georgetown is a school that garners international attention, Epi is a restaurant with options from almost every corner of the world, yet still features universal favorites, like largerthan-life cookies.
A watering hole with soothing classical music, Epi is a latenight bastion of conversation between students who may not associate with one another during the day.
For accoutrements, there is free ice, lemon wedges, individualized salt and pepper packets and much, much more. Well, perhaps not much more. Still, the plastic cutlery is sturdier than that at any other college campus in America. Not to mention that there is a coffee bar that makes an excellent illy coffee or chocolate banana milkshake. I fondly recall my lazy Sunday mornings at Georgetown, sitting with my laptop, gazing out of the restaurant’s tall window panes. The drizzle of spring rain outside, the scent of brewing coffee and the quiet and warmth of the restaurant lend a nostalgic coziness to the scene. On a scale from Leo O’Donovan’s Dining Hall to Bulldog Tavern, I would have to place Epi high on the spectrum, even on par with Farmers Fishers Bakers. Its latenight conversation and warm ambience are of the highest quality – but its quesadilla cannot be beaten.
ANNA KOVACEVICH/THE HOYA
The title of Black Movement Dance Theater’s spring show “Defiance” was chosen to reflect the current state of the black community in the United States, and to emphasize the importance of empowerment. Student directors hope the show will facilitate dialogue.
Andrew J. Bilden is the sibling to a freshman in the School of Foreign Service. Georgetown From Afar appears every other Friday.
Friday, february 17, 2017
This week’S TOP FIVE
Top Five Grammy Snubs
‘Lemonade’ beyoncé (2017)
In her acceptance speech for Album of the Year, Adele declared that Beyoncé deserved the award, even breaking her Grammy in half in a symbolic sharing of honors. A number of critics and music fans alike have similarly expressed outcry at an awardless night for “Lemonade,” her most high-concept album to date. Visually and musically exploring a “woman’s journey of self-knowledge,” Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” found unparalleled cultural relevancy in 2016, producing iconic images and delivering universal impact.
‘Graduation’ kanye west (2008)
“Graduation,” the third studio album by hip-hop legend Kanye West, received a well-deserved accolade at the 50th Grammy Awards, easily picking up the title of Best Rap Album. Still, its incredibly innovative sound was worthy of top honors as well. In “Graduation,” West truly refined his style of rap, incorporating indie rock and electronic styles, and releasing some of his greatest hits to date — “Homecoming” and “Stronger” among them.
In light of her recent nuptials, stand-up comedian Jamie Lee decided to write a refreshingly honest wedding guidebook, “Weddiculous,” with a corresponding stand-up tour.
Busy, But Not Bridezilla
Aurora Johnson Special to The Hoya
This weekend, stand-up comedian Jamie Lee graces the stage of the DC Improv and join the ranks of stand-up legends like Ellen DeGeneres, Jerry Seinfeld, Dave Chappelle and Georgetown alumnus Jim Gaffigan (MSB ’88) who have performed on that stage. Last week, The Hoya spoke with Lee about her latest projects. Recently married, Lee decided to commemorate her big day unlike many new brides: Writing an honest wedding guidebook and launching a promotional stand-up tour. “Weddiculous,” which fellow comedian Nikki Glaser praised as the “most honest book about wedding planning anyone has ever written,” provides brides-to-be with hilarious, down-to-earth advice about what their weddings will really be like. Her favorite piece of advice: “Everyone is going to s−−t-talk your wedding.” “No matter the amount of money or the amount of effort you put into your wedding, someone is going to find something they think is wrong with it, and they’re going to tell other people about it,” Lee said. “If you can allow yourself to accept that kind of horrifying fact, you will, I think, feel a great deal of relief knowing that you can’t control it. So why worry about it?” Even though “Weddiculous” is a wedding guidebook, Lee does not feel like it fits in perfectly with the rest of the bridal section at Barnes and Noble. “There’s also a whole other side to wedding planning that’s really emotional and pretty ridiculous, or you could even say ‘Weddiculous’” Lee said. “We just wanted to let people know that they’re not alone when they’re experiencing all the stress and drama.”
Recently married, Lee decided to commemorate her big day by writing an honest wedding guidebook. According to Lee, most of the literature out there for brides is a part of what she calls “Big Bridal,” a commercial movement centered around giving new brides the expectation of a fairy tale wedding. “The aesthetic part of your wedding is not the only factor in making a good wedding. In fact, the most lavish wedding I ever went to is one of the worst weddings I ever went to,” Lee said. “We aimed to let people know that you’re not a failure and there’s really no right or wrong way to do this.” In fact, Lee’s favorite moment from her recent
wedding was completely improvised. “The Thursday before our wedding, a bunch of people were starting to arrive at the hotel, and there was a really informal, casual plan to meet us over at this place at the hotel … We sent out a mass text to people who had already arrived saying, ‘Hey, if you’re around and hungry, come meet up with us,’ and so many people came to that,” Lee said. “It was very organic the way it happened, and the fact that it didn’t really take any planning at all made it more special.” Lee’s career has hardly been on hold despite her recent nuptials. She is currently writing on Pete Holmes’ HBO series “Crashing,” a show about a struggling comedian whose wife leaves him. According to Lee, the show is actually a lot more inspiring than it sounds. “Pete’s show is more about new beginnings, like we see the marriage in the pilot. You kind of get the backstory about the marriage falling apart, but really it’s about someone who’s picking up and starting over, so it’s actually more inspiring than depressing,” Lee said. Although “Crashing” is Lee’s first foray into narrative writing, she considers it a welcome challenge. “When you write on talk shows the pressure on you is just to write a bunch of jokes, and then, when you’re writing on a narrative show, the pressure is to make sure that the characters in the story do something for the audience and that the audience connects with them,” Lee said. Previously, Lee had written on Holmes’ latenight talk show “The Pete Holmes Show” on TBS, and is now starring in the MTV series “Girl Code,” which recently wrapped up its fourth season. She also hosts a podcast, “Jamie Lee’s Best of the Worst,” as well as the show “10 Things” on TruTV. Lee is now developing her own half-hour comedy series for Bravo, as well as a feature film with James Corden of “The Late Late Show.” Although she is now a successful comedian with a busy schedule, she did not always know she wanted to be a comic. “I didn’t know for sure until post-college. I did a comedy show on our student news channel, and then my first job out of college was working for Comedy Central, and I knew then I wanted to be around comedy,” Lee said. “Girl Code,” a show that creates a space for female comics to talk about gender-specific topics without worrying about appealing to male audiences, has helped Lee develop her own comedy style. “On that show everybody kind of has their own role. They encourage you to just be yourself,” Lee said. “It really makes you kind of hone in on who you are as a comedian, and it also makes advice-giving funny which really helped with the book.” Jamie Lee is performing at DC Improv from Feb. 17 to 19. Her new book “Weddiculous” is on sale now, and “Crashing” premieres on HBO on Feb. 19.
CHUNG KING STUDIOS
‘Futuresex/LoveSounds’ Justin Timberlake (2006)
Although it was nominated during an especially competitive year for Grammy contenders, Justin Timberlake’s “FutureSex/LoveSounds” ought to have won awards in two key categories: Best Pop Vocal Album and Album of the Year. “FutureSex/LoveSounds” is likely Timberlake’s most iconic album, and though often glossed over as a selection of sultry dance hits, it bravely ventured into new musical territory, experimenting with different sound bites and grooving interludes — ultimately, redefining pop music in the 21st century.
‘Born in the U.S.A.’ Bruce Springstein (1985)
Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the U.S.A.” is one of the most beloved albums of the 1980s. Its patriotic spirit and authentic lyrics — and of course, Springsteen’s iconic raspy vocals — have rendered it an essential of American heartland rock. From classics like “Dancing in the Dark” to more intimate tracks like “I’m On Fire,” “Born in the U.S.A.” does not have just one standout track; rather, it is a standout album extremely deserving — but unfortunately, not receiving — of Album of the Year of 1985.
‘ABBEY ROAD’ tHE BEATLES (1970)
Few would argue that The Beatles did not receive their share of international recognition and accolades. Still, the iconic British band’s loss of Album of the Year in 1970 continues to surprise critics and music fans alike. Though “Abbey Road” was released towards the end of “Beatlemania,” it certainly helped to establish the band’s legacy as a global rock phenomena, especially with tracks like “Here Comes the Sun,” “Come Together” and “Something” — some of the world’s greatest songs of all time.
Photo of the Week | Taormina, Sicily
Perhaps best known for her role on MTV’s “Girl Code,” Lee keeps a full schedule, hosting her own podcast and TruTV’s show “10 Things,” in addition to an upcoming feature film.
PETER SHAMAMIAN/THE HOYA
friday, February 17, 2017
Bake My Day
This Diet Did Not Kale My Vibe
K ARLO GUTHRIE
Seasoned musician Arlo Guthrie is known for creating folk music with a conscience. The son of famed folk musician Woody Guthrie, Arlo Guthrie is currently on the Running Down the Road Tour, revisiting his favorite songs from the late ’70s and ’60s.
Guthrie Talks Touring, Folk Music Rachel linton
people learning to express themselves. Music is pretty powerful stuff.
A seasoned musician, Arlo Guthrie is no stranger to the touring lifestyle. Like his father Woody Guthrie, Arlo is known for his folk music with a conscience. Following his sold-out Alice’s Restaurant 50th Anniversary Tour, Guthrie is currently on his Running Down the Road Tour, performing his greatest tracks from the late ‘60s and ‘70s. In an exclusive email interview with The Hoya, Guthrie discussed the Running Down the Road Tour, his extensive musical catalog and his past work.
You said recently in an interview with Herald-Mail Media that you’ve “always advocated the questioning of authority.” There’s been a recent rise in criticism of the involvement of performers in political discourse. What do you think is the responsibility of individuals with a public platform, with regards to their personal political views? There wouldn’t be much late-night humor if some people had their way. If someone is uncomfortable speaking out about what’s going on, they shouldn’t have to do it. Likewise, if someone is uncomfortable not speaking out, we should let ‘em do so. In the long run those with talent will be appreciated, and those without will do something else. There’s no free pass just because someone is an entertainer. Democracy seems to work best when we allow people to express themselves.
Special to The Hoya
Your last album was “Tales of ’69,” released in 2009, and the focus of your new tour is your music from the late ’60s and early ’70s. Why the focus on music from the past? Folk songs are the original social media. Nowadays people seem to tweet more and sing less. However, there’s no doubt there are many young people writing and recording new songs, because this is their world now. I am, in effect, a part of the past, so I focus on who I am, knowing that the past is the foundation of the future — if that makes any sense. What about the cultural sentiments of the ’60s and ’70s do you think still resonates today? Do you believe that there is a need for new folk music to reflect new generations and the current political and cultural climate? There was a recent development in that music from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s began to outsell music being created these days. That tells you something not only about the music industry but about the young generation of
You’ve written some books for children, and you’ve explained that came out of a desire to tell stories for “very young people.” Do you think your older music can still resonate with a younger generation? Do you expect many younger people to attend your concerts on this tour? I expect there will one or two under 25 going to the gigs. More than that is icing on the cake. Personally, I love having new victims. Performing your older songs, do you ever find that you have any regrets about them? Do you have any albums that you would choose to go back and do differently, and do you think that going back and performing your older music gives you the opportunity, in a way, for revision? There are recordings of mine I don’t allow
in the house. And there are songs of mine I stopped singing a long time ago. There’s also some I’ve kept singing for over 50 years. Given the chance, there’s a lot of recordings I’d do over again — it’s just that there’s better things to do than to go around repeating yourself hoping to make it better. Your son Abe joins you on stage for this tour, as part of Shenandoah. As a musician, you’re also following in the footsteps of your father — how much do you think your family has influenced your life as a musician? We’re not advertising or playing up the Shenandoah thing — at least I’m not. Having said that, I love playing with some of my old bandmates after so long a time. We’re like family. Add to this that I love playing with my biological family and it gets even better. We’ve done family tours over the years when all the kids and grandkids get out there on stage. It’s something my father dreamed of doing, and we got to live his dream. For that I’m simply grateful. What do you want the people who listen to your music, and particularly the music on this tour, to take away from it? Whatever they can remember. Where do you see yourself and your music going after this? The next tour is already being scheduled. Beginning later this year we will be doing more of a family show — old school style. We’ll swap some songs and stories together on stage and see what happens. At least, that’s the plan — for now. It’ll be called “Re:Generation” because we don’t know what else to call it.
A Tourist’s Take on Southwest Asia Alfie’s
3714 Macomb St. NW | Cuisine: French | $ alexandra brunjes Hoya Staff Writer
A self-described “Traveler’s Bar” serving an ever-changing variety of Thai-inspired grub, Alfie’s is an overlooked gem in the D.C. food scene. Located in Park View, the locally sourced restaurant conceals delectable dishes and a charming atmosphere behind a nondescript brick exterior and unadorned olive-colored awnings. With experienced staff and a reasonably priced yet mouthwatering menu that changes weekly, Alfie’s is well worth the Uber ride from the Georgetown campus. Alfie’s was founded by chef Alex McCoy, who drew inspiration for the restaurant’s base concept from the food he ate during his numerous visits to Southeast Asia. After visiting the region many times on his own, twice for research and once with his Alfie’s team, McCoy used his knowledge to breed a dining concept that conflates the authenticity of Thai food with the dynamic experience of a traveler eating it. The result is a unique, charming restaurant serving passion-infused dishes reflecting Thai culture with a tourist’s twist. When my party visited Alfie’s for Sunday brunch, which runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., we stepped through the door and were greeted by a sweet yet enthralling rustic design: bright blue walls, wooden tables and chairs, chalkboard menus and a modern bar area with silver bar stools, low hanging lights and decorative plants. The ventilation pipes hang from the ceiling and, along with the chalked menus and bar refrigerator, are strung with colorful lights. My party ordered at the bar. Here, the scribbled chalkboard hanging next to the counter showed that the day’s offerings featured five entrees, four drinks and the weekend special — Tuna Poke by Adam Greenberg, Food Network “Chopped” grand champion and former head chef of Barcelona Wine Bar. The most thrilling part of the Alfie’s experience is that early birds can often serve as spectators to some of the behind-the-scenes restaurant prep, from staff members standing on a stool and scribbling the “Catch of the Day” on the menu to McCoy working on his laptop at the bar to Greenberg setting up for a day of cooking. The only downfall to our early visit was that we were the only patrons, so
the restaurant was devoid of the characteristic chatter that really completes the traveler’s experience. The first thing we were served was Thai iced coffee ($3), which had the perfect touch of sweetness from condensed milk. Hitting the perfect balance between tartness and sweetness, the cold beverage paved the taste buds for a refreshing culinary journey. Tuna Poke ($11) and the Spam Fried Rice ($8) followed. The former is a special of Greenberg’s, who brings a splash of Hawaii to Alfie’s each weekend. The dishes were served in a timely manner and by the chef himself. The food was presented beautifully; the poke was artfully arranged in a small bowl, and the Spam Fried Rice had a perfectly soft egg set atop it. Described on the menu as containing sushi rice, yellowtail, tobiko, soy, pineapple and nori, with the option of adding uni for an additional $6, the poke proved a dynamic selection and had a wonderful combination of flavors and textures. The soft rice contrasted the crispness of the nori as well as the crunch of green pepper. The soy sauce was flavorful but not overpowering, the vegetables were fresh and light, and the chipotle mayonnaise provided a sweet-and-sour kick.
Each bite was a different and enjoyable combination of flavors. The Spam Fried Rice — featuring slowcooked egg, pineapple and soy — was fullbodied, mouth-watering and hearty without being heavy. The rich flavors achieved an admirable cohesion throughout the dish’s different components. Although there was a diversity of flavor and sensation, the tastes completed rather than combatted one another, deliciously interacting. The rice was crunchy, and the sweetness of the pineapple supplemented the saltiness of the spam. Although the fried rice proved delicious on its own, the icing on the cake , so to speak, was the soft egg placed atop it. Not only did it provide the dish with a sense of authenticity, but the smooth runniness of the yolk enhanced the flavors of the rice. Although Alfie’s is a little bit of a hike from campus — a 15-minute drive, requiring approximately $5 for Uber pool and $10 for Uber X — the food is undoubtedly worth it, especially considering the quality offered for such a low price. Arguably, the only concrete downfall is that Alfie’s does not offer a dessert menu, but, ultimately, the food is so delicious and reasonably priced that diners will not have any room left for dessert anyway.
ALEXANDRA BRUNJES/THE HOYA
Located in Park View and founded by chef Alex McCoy, Alfie’s serves dishes inspired by the traditional fare of Southeast Asia from the perspective of a traveller.
$ = $1-$9 | $$ = $10-$19 | $$$ = $20-$29 | $$$$ = $30+
ale has a variety of different uses beyond the simple salad. In fact, this leafy green exists in such abundance in Washington, D.C. that a kale diet is possible anywhere in the city. This week, I am featuring my seven-day “complete kale cleanse.” For those worried about the variety of my daily nutrient consumption, I did not have just kale, but I ate kale consistently, at least twice a day. Following this simple rule proved as amazing as it was easy to do — a complete 180-degree turn from the paleo diet of two weeks ago — in fact, it was a total “fairy-kale.” As much as I would like to stop exalting the myriad of wonderful qualities this vegetable possesses, my sense of duty does not allow me to do so. Humanity needs kale: Kale has it all. With just one serving, you can cross out your vitamins A, C and K for the day. It is a sure-fire way to feel great throughout the week. I transformed just one bag of kale from Trader Joe’s into 5 to 7 servings. However, you better make sure to grab the regular bag over the organic option — I learned the hard way that organic kale goes bad within a day of opening. Store the kale in the coldest part of your fridge, away from other produce, and never cede to the temptation of freezing it. The kale diet also left me feeling happy and satisfied. It is a very filling vegetable, if not the easiest to snack on raw. Moreover, I found that my usual cravings were cut back and no late-night Ben and Jerry’s runs needed. In terms of convenience, it is a simple fix to prepare a large bowl of kale and butternut squash salad for a few days’ lunch. Depending on how you cook it, kale can take different textures, which creates variety for this simple diet. Beware of bits, however; it is important to take care to check your teeth before heading out, or else you might be grinning green. I may have made that mistake before an interview. Overall, the seven-day kale cleanse proved a success. I have expanded my cooking repertoire and plan to include a few servings of kale per week, though probably not as many servings as I had this week. With this wonderfully sustainable diet, I felt great while doing it. Here are some restaurants close by that offer some serious kale menu items: 1. Chaia: Skip Dog Tag Bakery treats this week and head next door to Chaia for unconventional vegan tacos. 2. Ching Ching Cha: Located next to Filomena, this gem is often overlooked despite its diverse array of loose-leaf tea and fun floor seating. It is simultaneously a restaurant, tea hub, Asian-goods shop and a personal favorite. 3. Sweetgreen: No need to comment on this Georgetown-must. 4. The Bombay Club: For those craving some classier kale fare. 5. The Tombs: It is right outside of the main gates on 35th Street, so few excuses could prevent Georgetown students from going once and trying one of the signature salads or the grilled swordfish on kale. Here are some kale recipes that I tried and loved: 1. Kale black bean burritos: For these spicy treats, fill a tortilla with black beans, kale, goat cheese, avocado, kale pesto, and wrap. Optional for spice: jalapeno, lime juice, cumin, garlic, etc. 2. Kale, chicken, butternut squash and farro salad: After peeling and dicing a butternut squash, toss in some olive oil and garlic. Bake on an aluminum foil-covered baking sheet for 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Toss with grilled chicken, cooked farro, kale and the dressing of your choice. 3. Kale pesto: Toss kale, a clove of garlic, and a half cup of olive oil into a food processor and blend until smooth. Add lemon juice and salt to taste and about a half cup of raw almonds or cashews to the mix and pulse until blended. 4. Creamed kale: Blanch your kale in salt water, then rinse and drain. Melt butter over medium heat and add chopped kale, a cup of heavy cream, and nutmeg to taste. Reduce to simmer until sauce has thickened. Season with salt and pepper. 5. Kale, red pepper, spinach and snap pea stir-fry: Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil and kale, sliced red peppers, spinach, and snap-peas to a pan over medium-high heat. Season with your favorite stir-fry sauce and serve over rice. And these are the kale recipes that I tried and loathed: 1. Kale smoothies: Making these seemingly simple beverages at home will ruin both your day and your pearly whites; I found myself with kale stuck in my teeth for a whole week. 2. Kale quesadillas: The kale really took over and subverted the goal of cheese — cheesiness. 3. Cheesy kale chips: No cheesiness, no yumminess. Nina Young is a sophomore in the School of Foreign Service. BAKE MY DAY appears every other Friday.
Friday, FEBRUARY 17, 2017
MICHAEL DE LUCA PRODUCTIONS
A faithful interpretation of E.L. James’ erotic romantic trilogy, Director James Foley’s film brings audiences back to the risque world of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey. Starring Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan, “Fifty Shades Darker” is a look into Christian’s psyche and past demons and how they affect a burgeoning relationship.
Fifty Shades Darker Starring: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan Directed By: James Foley JessICA batey Hoya Staff Writer
Mr. Grey will see you — again. Bolder, darker and intensely intimate, “Fifty Shades Darker” is the much-anticipated sequel to the global sensation “Fifty Shades of Grey.” Based on the erotic romantic trilogy by E. L. James, this film continues the story of Anastasia Steele, a recent college graduate, and her tortured love interest, full-time young billionaire and part-time sexual dominant Christian Grey. Returning to the risque world of Steele and Grey can be a quite a heady experience; as the film’s central characters become increasingly complex, their relationship becomes increasingly emotionally charged — and electric to watch. “Fifty Shades Darker” opens exploring Christian’s past, a scene that proves to be of great significance throughout the film. Viewers are then placed back in Seattle, seemingly days after the events that concluded the first film, as Anastasia comes to terms with her recent breakup. After reconnecting at a photography exhibit, Ana decides to give Christian another chance and agrees to attempt a “normal” relationship with him.
However, as noble as Christian’s desire to change is, they cannot escape his dark history and soon, Anastasia must come face-to-face with those scorned by the man she loves. “Fifty Shades Darker” is thus aptly named, as it delves into the dramatic, tortured history of a seemingly perfect man.
Evidently, great attention has been paid to acheive a stunning and aesthetic experience for viewers. Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan return as Anastasia and Christian, and their improving upon the sense of the awkwardness between them in the first film. Although there are still many moments of humorous tension between the characters in this film, there is also a greater sense of familiarity and chemistry between the two. Furthermore, as “Fifty Shades” fans will expect, the film does not hold back
in its portrayal of Christian and Ana’s intimate encounters. There are undoubtedly some eyebrow-raising moments that will prove entertaining for those who choose to watch the film in theaters — nervous laughter was a frequent occurrence at the DC Press Screening. As with the first film, “Fifty Shades Darker” follows E. L. James’ work closely and delivers an interpretation that honors the book as best as can be achieved in a film adaptation. Dornan and Johnson are natural and charismatic, while delivering dramatic moments and lines with commendable poise and believability. The plot in this second film is far more dramatic and complex than that of the first film. Viewers will be engrossed by the mystery and eventual revelation of the film and entertained by the racier scenes. The film falls short at times, however, in the way that particular scenes — those of great importance in the book — are glossed over quickly or depicted inadequately. Dornan, likely aiming for a brooding, husky voice, mumbles during notably significant scenes and thus distracts from what could be a convincing retelling of a dialogue-intensive book. Ultimately, the level of comedy in this film makes up for any of its substantial
shortcomings and contributes to a truly enjoyable experience for viewers. Fans of the series will experience all that they enjoyed in the book, along with a beautiful portrayal of the glitz and glamor of Mr. Grey’s lifestyle. In this sense, the film is clearly a step-up from the first in terms of its depiction of Grey’s extravagance and love of adventure. In addition, there are impressive shots panning over water and sweeping views of landscapes — and the Seattle skyline — are sure to catch viewers eyes. Audiences cannot help but appreciate the artistic way in which the film is presented. Evidently, great attention has been paid to achieve a stunning and riveting aesthetic experience for viewers. The soundtrack, featuring Taylor Swift, Zayn, Nicki Minaj, Nick Jonas, Halsey and Sia, is a remarkable addition to the film. If so inclined, watching this film would serve as an entertaining Valentine’s Day date, but a night with friends is probably the best way to appreciate it. The drama and story take a more central focus in this sequel and make the film an engrossing experience. That said, be prepared to raise an eyebrow and shift awkwardly in your seat, for ”Fifty Shades Darker” does neither seek nor achieve distance, only hot and heavy intimacy.
Fist Fight Starring: Ice Cube, Charlie Day Directed By: Richie Keen
Hoya Staff Writer
Awkwardly sandwiched between winter films vying for awards and Hollywood summer blockbusters seeking large audiences are the late-winter and spring movies. Like a quarterback at a math meet, these films simply do not fit into the traditional cycle that the film industry has inadvertently created. Some of these movies are dramatic pictures that studios purposely choose to release late, because they are regarded as weak contenders in awards season. Others are low-budget action films that cannot compete against the usual summer superhero hits. Comedy and horror films have been in trouble for a long time now. Not only do these two genres fail to fit neatly into the spring-summer transitional season, to add insult to injury, studios do not want to place inherently riskier projects in competition against surefire box office giants, such as “Suicide Squad,” on the same weekend. Each year, after countless reboots and remakes, horror films and comedies fail to generate as much money as their cinematic counterparts and are bemoaned by critics and audiences for lacking fresh ideas and originality. “Fist Fight” is the epitome of what the comedy genre needs. Opening to a rock track, the film quickly winks at “Brat Pack” high school films, honoring John Hughes’s 80s cinematic culture right off the bat. From its trailers and marketing, “Fist Fight” appears to be about a brawl between two teachers who agree to fight one another after class on the last day of school. Charlie Day plays Andy Campbell, a meek, mild-mannered teacher who garners the wrath of Ice Cube’s character, Mr. Strickland, after he gets fired because of Campbell. However, “Fist Fight” goes beyond the fight between the two public school teachers. It is a film filled with rich social commentary about underfunded public schools and the difficulties of being a teacher. It also touches upon themes of bullying and the confrontation of fears. The key to the film’s refreshing, intelligent pace is that it never takes itself too seriously. It is a prime example of how films with a seemingly flat plot can achieve great finesse through nimble directing. “Fist Fight” is as entertaining as it is hilarious, and this combination is the
WARNER BROS. PICTURES
Starring comic actors like Ice Cube, Charlie Day, Tracy Morgan and Jillian Bell, “Fist Fight” is a well-written, goofy film with a clever narrative— a refreshing contribution to both the early spring film cycle and the action comedy genre. result of Richie Keen’s masterful direction. His nuanced constructions of solid supporting characters along with his sharp writing make for hilarious sequences that are bound to raise some loud laughs. Primarily known for directing TV comedies such as “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” “The Goldbergs” and “Angie Tribeca,” Keen makes good use of the film’s 91-minute runtime, managing to pack in as much humor as possible without ever detracting from the general plotline. Are the performances a bit generic? Sure. Day essentially plays the same character that made him famous in “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” and Ice Cube emulates his previous roles in films such as “21 Jump Street” and “Ride Along.” However, Keen’s swift directing makes both performances effective within the sidesplitting narrative. Addition-
ally, Keen makes masterful use of the film’s soundtrack to differentiate moods in-between scenes. His careful use of slow-motion only makes the film funnier, though this could have hindered the sequences under a weaker director. “Fist Fight” boasts a spectacular supporting cast: Tracy Morgan, Jillian Bell, Christina Hendricks, Dean Norris and Kumail Nanjiani appear in supporting roles that further strengthen the film. Although the comedic chemistry between Day and Ice Cube is unmatched, Morgan steals every scene in which he appears. Besides his participation in Chris Rock’s “Top Five,” “Fist Fight” is Morgan’s first major film since his nearly fatal car accident in 2014. Despite the film’s star-studded cast, Keen makes room for talented newcomers such as Austin Zajur, Bill Kottkamp and Alexa Nisenson. Set
in a high school, the students provide some of the strongest, and most surprising, laughs throughout the film. As the film is advertised as a fight between two teachers, the culminating and long-awaited battle certainly does not disappoint. The fight resembles less the ending of a “Rocky” movie and more of a well-choreographed WWE ladder match. Comedy films are far from going extinct, but well-written ones are certainly endangered. However, “Fist Fight” serves as a solid example of this dying breed. While Ice Cube and Charlie Day deliver formulaic performances reminiscent of past characters, Van Robichaux and Evan Susser’s screenplay as well as Richie Keen’s exceptional directorial skills elevate this film, making it a notable exception to the early spring film cycle.
friday, February 17, 2017
DROGAS Light Hoya Staff Writer
Lupe Fiasco’s career has been tumultuous in recent months; after a series of tweets in response to his ostensibly anti-Semitic lyrics and talks of an early retirement in 2016, the Chicago rapper cancelled the release of two upcoming studio albums. Luckily for his fans, however, Lupe Fiasco has finally dropped the first of three albums to come: “DROGAS Light,” a passionate and experimental — though at times uneven — creation. Composed of 14 tracks and clocking in at just over an hour, “DROGAS Light” is Lupe Fiasco’s attempt to both refine his signature sound and maintain his trademark focus on personal and social themes. In his anticipation of critical response to “DROGAS Light,” Lupe Fiasco released his own review of the album on Twitter, deeming it “the only review of #DROGASLight that matters.” In his evaluation, the rapper self-effacingly rates his latest work at a mere seven out of 10, describing it as “somewhat of a mixed bag.” Still, Lupe Fiasco argues that his new music reflects clear improvement from his 2011 release, “LASERS,” and says that it “possesses … classic Lupe direct social commentary and imaginative storytelling.” Lupe Fiasco’s review, although unquestionably subjective, is not far off the mark. “DROGAS Light” certainly has its merits — yet its overall effect is decidedly more mixed. The album opens with “Dopamine Lit (Intro),” a brief and instantly catchy introduction with a vigorous beat. Its lyrics are relatively simple and repetitive, yet there are still a few moments in which Lupe Fiasco’s clever lyricism shines through: “Try Containment Unit, the walls, they can’t fit us / Who the Ghostbusters gon’ call to come get us?” Though “Dopamine Lit” is not Lupe Fiasco’s most complex composition, it effortlessly transitions listeners into an energetic album. Following “Dopamine Lit” is “NGL,” one of the album’s most forceful tracks. Featuring Ty Dolla $ign and recorded over a backtrack with an incredibly strong beat,
“NGL” is instrumentally powerful, yet also manages to highlight guest artist Ty Dolla Sign’s intricately layered vocals. Though “NGL” draws listeners in with its hook, its thematic message is just as compelling. The track emphasizes the necessity of being conscious of the world one lives in, drawing from Lupe Fiasco’s experiences growing up as a black male. Lupe Fiasco makes reference to the inequitable U.S. justice system, rapping, “Disproportionate convictions / Especially when it come to our case (our case) / You seen the movie, they killed the n–––a / Why you still wanna be like Scarface?” At the end of the song, the instrumental backtrack tapers off altogether, letting Lupe Fiasco and Ty Dolla Sign’s impassioned lyrics truly take center stage. “NGL” is not the only track that benefits from the appearance of a guest artist. Other featured artists on the album include Bianca Sings, Gizzle, Rondo, Simon Sayz, Victoria Monét, Salim, Jake Torrey, RXMN, Rick Ross and Big K.R.I.T., the latter two making appearances on “Tranquillo.” The song is already a fan favorite, with the interplay between its cascading, ethereal instrumentals and distinctive vocals. The lyrics of “Tranquillo” are pure poetry, with Lupe Fiasco rapping “I will pursue felicity, find value in simplicity / Altruism and empathy will be the first thing extended to my enemy / Clarity will be the trademark of my friendships.” Despite the wide array of guest artists, Lupe Fiasco still holds his own while solo; “Promise” is a prime example. Although more one-dimensional than the preceding tracks, “Promise” is a fun, easy listen that subtly builds a sense of tension with its string instrumentals. While it has its fair share of standout tracks, “DROGAS Light” could benefit from a more filtered approach. Tracks like “Jump,” featuring Gizzle, and “City of the Year,” featuring Rondo, sound over-produced and overwhelm the listener with less harmonious elements. Other tracks on “DROGAS Light” simply feel as though they do not belong. “Wild Child,” featuring singer Jake Torrey, has the feel of an indie-pop song, with a ro-
1ST & 15TH ENTERTAINMENT
After many cancellations and online tirades, Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco has finally released his studio album, “DROGAS Light,” the first in a trilogy of albums. mantic, acoustic hook. Though it is by no means unenjoyable, “Wild Child” contributes to the album’s overarching feel of disjointedness. In a similar sense, “Pick Up the Phone” sounds entirely out of place on the album, like a pop-rock anthem intercut with Lupe Fiasco’s rap verse. As a result, it feels as though Lupe Fiasco is interrupting guest artists on his own album. “It’s Not Design,” featuring Salim, is another case of Lupe Fiasco’s music completely flipping genres — to retro funk, in this case. The groovy track is yet another departure from Lupe Fiasco’s characteristic heavy rap sound that fans have grown to love. In fact, as listeners will find, the album continually devolves in random directions as it progresses, despite a strong
Special to The Hoya
British singer-songwriter Sampha usually stays away from the spotlight, adding his breathy vocals and touches of piano to the songs of other artists, including Kanye West, Solange and Drake. In a 2016 interview with Complex Magazine, he said, “There are songs I’ve played keyboard on, and I haven’t been credited. And I’m okay [with that], because I genuinely like making music.” On his debut album “Process,” which follows his two solo extended plays from 2010 to 2013, the South London singer takes center stage, revealing his hopes and fears through his distinctively soft and textured voice and creating a deeply intimate work that will resonate with any listener experiencing personal turmoil. “Process” is a moody reflection that sounds as though it comes from the bottom of Sampha’s soul, masterfully taking the listener on a dreamlike tour through the singer’s psyche. The clouded atmosphere created by both Sampha’s vocals and the instrumental production can make listening to “Process” feel like floating through a dreamscape, drifting between reality and delusion. This surreal effect is mirrored in the lyrics of
start. Whether “DROGAS Light” is indeed a refinement from Lupe Fiasco’s 2011 and 2015 albums — “LASERS” and “Tetsuo & Youth,” respectively — remains to be seen. Despite Lupe Fiasco’s insistence that his latest work is more successful, both past albums were more effective in creating cohesive listening experiences. “DROGAS Light” finds some success in its experimental forays, but sounds as though Lupe Fiasco was not quite committed to his musical agenda. Lupe Fiasco’s self-assessment may seem like a humorous antic, but serves to deliver a surprisingly insightful look at highlights and drawbacks of his latest work. “DROGAS Light” is, as he hoped, high-concept and thought-provoking; it just needs editing.
Lupe Fiasco Meena raman
“Blood on Me,” as Sampha sings “I wake up and the sky’s blood red / I’m still heavy breathin’ / Felt so much more than dreamin’ / I get up, they’re at the edge of my bed / Yeah, how did they find me, find me?” This terrifying sense of uncertainty permeates the album, with imagery like “The TV keeps glitching / The lights dim down and portals appear” continuing to blur the line between dreams, nightmares and the real world. The unearthly tones of the album contribute to a general theme of worrying and anxiety, and lines like “Sleeping with my worries, yeah / I didn’t really know what that lump was,” from the song “Plastic 100°C” speak both to a general malaise and, more specifically, to distressing events in Sampha’s life. Sampha makes references to breaking glass, singing “You’re the crack inside the screen” and “I threw the blame and it shattered,” to reveal his fracturing sense of security. At the same time, his draws from the sensory feelings of “melting” and “bleeding” to build upon the overwhelming sense of loss permeating “Process.” Sampha’s sense of vague existential dread is not the only force generating the dark undertones of “Process.” In the years leading up to the album’s release, Sampha
had to cope with the loss of his mother to cancer and a growing estrangement with his physically disabled brother, who had suffered from a stroke. This put Sampha in the position of being caregiver to both his brother and ailing mother. The artist addresses his mother’s passing most directly on the track “(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano,” recounting how “They said that it’s her time / no tears in sight/I kept the feelings close.” Indeed, family connections are a source of both sadness and strength for the singer; the contrast between lines “We don’t have to talk / I just need you here / But if you go away / Please don’t disappear” and “Family ties /put them round my neck” displays the complex relationship Sampha has with his family, as he recognizes both his need and desire for strong familial ties and his resentment of being constrained by them. The most minimalistic track on the album is the aforementioned intimate “(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano,” featuring only Sampha’s voice and piano, with soft drums and an occasional touch of reverb. This song and the similarly sparse “Take Me Inside” provide both a contrast and balance to the rest of the album’s more densely layered synths, booming drums and hi-hats. Each track is produced with
impressive attention to detail and has a distinct sonic identity. “Reverse Faults” is characterized by an erratic synth line and booming bass, while “Kora Sings” has galloping drums and rattles, along with strumming that sounds like a West African stringed instrument called a kora. At the same time, the album as a whole is highly cohesive and keeps a consistently airy, ethereal tone, held together by Sampha’s commanding vocal performances. With the release of “Process,” Sampha has become far more than the occasional guest presence on the track of a more famous artist. The album introduces Sampha as a confident and unique vocalist, with a subtle ear for melody and talent for production that shows in the album’s intricately layered beats, created with help from prolific music producer Rodaidh McDonald, who has worked with artists such as Adele, the xx and Vampire Weekend. “Process” places Sampha as a rising star in the flourishing scene of alternative R&B, alongside artists like Frank Ocean, Blood Orange and James Blake, appealing to listeners who appreciate unique voices and avant-garde production choices. Sampha’s full-length debut is ethereal and haunting, promising to leave a lasting impression on the souls of those who listen closely.
South London singer-songwriter Sampha has kept a low profile in the past, despite working with megastars like Kanye West, Solange and Drake. On his debut album, “Process,” Sampha puts his soft vocals and darkly poignant songwriting on full display, joining the ranks of established alternative R&B musicians like Frank Ocean and James Blake.
friDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2017
GU Drops Season Opener After Late Collapse Luke Djavaherian Special to the Hoya
In its season opener, following a revitalizing offseason, Georgetown men’s lacrosse suffered a 9-3 loss to the High Point Panthers on
the road Tuesday afternoon. Despite the final score, the gameplay on the field was highly competitive, especially during the first half. At the faceoff X, junior midfielder Riley Mann won the majority of his battles,
going 10-of-15 on faceoffs and giving the Hoyas (0-1) a number of scoring opportunities. However, the Georgetown offense struggled to put the ball past High Point sophomore goalkeeper Tim Troutner Jr., who notched 14
FILE PHOTO: CLAIRE SOISSON/THE HOYA
Sophomore attack Daniel Bucaro scored Georgetown’s first goal of the season against High Point on Tuesday. He also notched an assist on Georgetown’s second goal.
saves for the Panthers (1-0). The game was a slowpaced defensive battle, featuring 17 possessions for Georgetown and 21 for High Point. In a low-possession game, scoring efficiency and goalkeeping can greatly affect the game’s final outcome. “There’s a big difference between shooting and scoring, and their goalie played really well in the first half,” Georgetown Head Coach Kevin Warne said. “I think that we got good looks, we faced-off well, [the shots] just didn’t drop.” High Point, on the other hand, came out firing in the first quarter with two early goals. The Hoyas bounced back at 2:18 in the first quarter with an assist from sophomore midfielder Patrick Aslanian to sophomore attack Daniel Bucaro to bring the score to 2-1. Later in the second quarter, junior midfielder Craig Berge scored off of an assist from Bucaro to tie things up going into the half. With his first goal of the 2017 season under his belt,
Bucaro is already on his way to building on an exceptional freshman season, during which he scored 31 total points and was named Big East Freshman of the Year. The Hoya defense looked sound in the first half, holding the Panthers’ offense to just two goals. In the cage, junior goalkeeper Nick Marrocco pulled in three saves in the second quarter alone and six saves overall. “Our defense did a good job overall,” Warne said. “When you go 10-of-15 facing off and hold a team to single digits, you hope to come out with more wins than losses.” Despite the solid defensive play in the first half, the tide shifted in the final two quarters as the Panthers scored seven unanswered goals to secure their victory. Recognizing how early it is in the season, Coach Warne sees the loss as a valuable learning experience and as an opportunity to build upon what they did well. “I think the best thing is that we’re playing right away,” Warne said. “I don’t want the guys to dwell on it
The Water Cooler
Young Squad Preps for Spring Season Tyler Welsh Hoya Staff Writer
Fresh off of a National Championship victory Nov. 20, 2016, the Georgetown sailing team begins to prepare for a new spring season. The Hoyas are also the reigning national champions in spring season collegiate fleet sailing. This weekend, the team is set to compete in preseason races with nearby sailing teams. While many members of last year’s national championship team have graduated, these exhibition matches will give a relatively new group of Hoyas an opportunity to test the waters.
Head Coach Michael Callahan discussed the effect that the departure of many skilled sailors has had on his team. “We’re not as good as were last year. We lost most of our best sailors. We’re in the mix. It would take a lot of improvement to be considered a favorite, but we’re certainly in the top ten,” Callahan said. Georgetown’s victory in the fall demonstrates the talent they have gained in absence of last year’s seniors. With the younger talent the Hoyas have to offer, the team poses a serious threat for other collegiate programs this year and in years to come. Amongst the newcomers who have caught the eye
of Callahan, Will Logue stands out. “We’re going to have a lot of kids getting a shot. We’re excited about Will Logue doing some sailing for us. He’s a junior world champion,” Callahan said. Logue received the gold medal in the International 420 Class in the Youth Sailing World Championship in January 2016. In addition to Logue, Callahan spoke of his excitement surrounding sophomore Campbell D’Eliscu and the role Callahan expects D’Eliscu to fill this season. “He’s going get a decent chance to perform for us. He did so in the fall and helped win the national championship for us. He’s
going to get a larger role in the spring,” Callahan said. While the fall season was an opportunity for individual sailing, the spring season features team-centric and far more prestigious competitions. “What we’ve been practicing all fall for,” Callahan said of the spring season. The season does not officially start until next weekend. After Georgetown scrimmages against local teams like The George Washington University and the Naval Academy, the women will compete against the College of Charleston Feb. 25 while the men start their season at the Navy Quad Team Race in Annapolis, Md., the same day.
Hoyas to Play Final Homestand Allie Babyak Hoya Staff Writer
more guard Dionna White and senior guard Mykia Jones supported the effort by scoring 12 points apiece. In order to secure another win against the Xavier Musketeers, the Hoyas must maintain a defensive focus. The last time the two teams met, Georgetown forced 22 Xavier turnovers. However, Georgetown allowed Xavier to shoot 50 percent in the first half, forcing the Hoyas to come from behind in the second half. When the Hoyas played Butler on Jan. 22, the Hoyas won 58-52. It was a close game throughout, with White carrying the team with 29 points. Despite the outcome, Adair noted an extra emphasis on defense for this weekend’s game. “We didn’t defend that
game,” Adair said “But, you know, that was early, and we’ve really nestled into that, and I think our chemistry is better. So, we watch film and points of emphasis where we want to deny in areas and limit touches in areas.” Butler is on a nine-game losing streak and lost to Depaul (22-5, 14-1 Big East) 9262 on Sunday. Even though the Bulldogs have struggled to convert wins as a team, their individual players can be dangerous scoring threats. Sophomore forward Tori Schickel is a force to be reckoned with on both sides of the floor. Schickel’s board play ranks her first in the conference with 11.2 rebounds per game, while her team, leading 13.9 points per game, ranks No.10 in the Big East.
“We need to limit her touches,” Adair said of Schickel. “In some areas, we may run two people at her.” Freshman guard Sydney Shelton earned Big East Freshman of the Week this past week, averaging 18 points and four rebounds while shooting 42.9 percent in Butler’s two losses last weekend. In the season, Shelton scores nine points per game in addition to 2.8 rebounds per game. Sitting two games back from the No. 4 spot in the Big East, Georgetown turns to this weekend as an opportunity to regain ground. Tipoff for Friday’s game against Butler is at 7 p.m. in McDonough Arena. The Hoyas will take on Xavier at 2 p.m. Sunday in McDonough.
After splitting last weekend’s two-game road trip, the Georgetown women’s basketball team returns home to face the Butler Bulldogs (2-12, 5-20 Big East) on Friday and the Xavier Musketeers (11-14, 3-11 Big East) on Saturday. The Hoyas can complete a season sweep against both teams this weekend; with four games remaining, Georgetown can also make a jump in the conference standings. Georgetown (15-9, 7-7 Big East) performed well against Seton Hall (11-14, 4-10 Big East) on Friday, staging a 28-12 run in the third quarter to win the game 77-60. Three players finished in double figures ,with senior forward Faith Woodward scoring 19 points and junior guard Dorothy Adomako adding 18. Junior forward Cynthia Petke had a breakout game, scoring a career-high 17 points with nine rebounds. “We have the versatility, we can put four to five players in double figures if it’s a great night for us,” Georgetown Head Coach Natasha Adair said. “But, we tell everyone to be ready. You never know when your name and your number is going to be called. So, they sit on the edge of their seat.” However, Georgetown suffered a 65-54 loss to St. John’s (17-9, 9-6) on Sunday. After the first quarter, the teams were tied at 18, but St. John’s pulled away to a 37-24 lead by the end of the second quarter. Despite the uphill battle, Georgetown pulled within five points with 2 minutes and 11 seconds remaining in the game. But the effort fell short, with Adomako scoring 21 points in the game. Georgetown pulled out a close 69-64 overtime win in its first matchup against Xavier on Jan. 20, the Hoyas’ first overtime victory of the seaFILE PHOTO: DERRICK ARTHUR/THE HOYA son. Adomako led the team with 18 points, followed by Senior forward Faith Woodard scored 19 points in Georgetown’s victory over Seton Woodward with 15. Sopho- Hall on Friday. She averages 14 points and a team-high 7.9 rebounds per game.
— I told the guys last night, ‘It’s over, move on. You’re not going to get that game back.’” The Hoyas have little time to dwell on the loss as they return to action this Saturday to face off against the No. 4 ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish. As part of the Patriot Cup in Frisco, Texas, the game will be held on the practice facilities of the Dallas Cowboys and broadcasted on ESPNU. According to Warne, the Georgetown players are ready for their chance to prove themselves on the national stage. Warne emphasized maintaining a balance between improving on Tuesday’s mistakes and studying the game plan during the week before the game against Notre Dame. “You’ve got to find that happy medium so guys have confidence, they know the plan, they know the opponent, but they also learn from past experiences to improve on them so they don’t happen twice,” Warne said. Opening faceoff against the Fighting Irish is set for Saturday at 2 p.m.
MLB Rule Ignores Root of Problem
here are times when the people entrusted to protect something become that object’s biggest threat. This has happened with Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred and a recently proposed rule that would begin every extra inning with a runner on second base. This proposed rule, which will be tested and evaluated in Minor League Baseball this upcoming season, is hardly worthy of study; it is foolish and should not merit consideration. If baseball is truly concerned with the amount of time it takes to play a game, there are better ways to change the rules than ruin extra innings. In 2016, Major League Baseball games took an average of three hours and four minutes to complete. This is in between the averages for recent years because baseball focused on the pace of play issue beginning in 2015. Because most teams play six or seven games a week and many of the viewers have an increasingly short attention span, baseball has a legitimate interest in keeping the pace of play up. The biggest problem with the proposed rule is that it would not meaningfully target the major causes of the alleged problem. Research from the Chicago Tribune pointed out that about 7.6 percent of all MLB games went into extra innings last season. Of that 7.6 percent, two-thirds ended in the 10th or 11th inning. Out of 2,428 regular season games, only eight — 0.03 percent of games — lasted 15 innings or longer. It is absurd to think that this rule will have any legitimate effect on the average length of a game when a vast majority of games end quickly without having runners on second base at the beginning of each extra half-inning. Another popular alleged culprit is instant replay. This, too, is a baseless criticism. According to MLB Replay Stats, the average length of a replay is about two-and-a-half minutes, and there is about half a replay per game on average. Replay, then, is responsible for about a minute of the game’s length. I believe most fans would trade that minute for the ability to ensure accurate calls on the field. This proposed change is all the more surprising given the traditional nature of baseball. Almost without question, baseball and its fans take great pride in the game’s history and how, save for equipment innovations and changes in the physical makeup of players, the game reserves a cer-
tain sense of continuity. There is a principled argument to be made that changing baseball’s rules to alter how the game is played in the name of expediency goes against everything for which it stands. Given that this rule change would both distort the procedure and outcome of baseball and does not address the heart of the problem, it is worth exploring other possible options that solve the problem without changing the on-field dynamics of the game. One idea would be to shorten the season. This is a contentious idea because it directly pits the interests of the owners against those of the players. The owners do not want to make the fiscal sacrifice of playing fewer home games, and the players would not want to take pay cuts in exchange for fewer games. Although there are credible arguments on both sides, it seems highly unlikely that a shortened season will arise anytime soon. A more innovative proposal, however, is to shorten the length of the games themselves from nine innings to eight. In practice, by cutting one inning from each team’s game, it would be the equivalent of cutting 18 games from the schedule. Though the players may not yield 18 additional off days as they might prefer, it is reasonable to think there would be long-term stamina and health benefits, especially to pitchers. The owners would not have to sacrifice much because the amount of games does not change and the potential health benefits to players could lead to an improvement in the quality and consistency of the product. For baseball purists, this may be the best compromise. Shortening the game does not actually change how a winner is determined or how the game is played. Tactical innovations and the increasing specialization of relief pitchers are already taking the game in that direction and rules that prevent legitimate, legal strategy should be received with massive skepticism. It is encouraging that “America’s Pastime” is choosing to evolve to make its game attractive to a new and vastly different generation. Unfortunately, the current propositions targeting extra innings would be ineffective and would distort a game that needs no modification. Michael Ippolito is a senior in the College. The Water Cooler appears every other Friday.
friDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2017
TRACK & FIELD
Stricter Rules Stifle Creativity ANALYST, from B10
The Georgetown men’s and women’s track teams will split squads this weekend, with runners competing at the Alex Wilson Invitational at Notre Dame and the Penn State Tune-Up. This is the final weekend before the Big East Championship.
White Leads GU in Final Stretch TRACK, from B10
White spoke about how his teammates, specifically Green and Carpenter, inspired him to strive for greatness after witnessing their performances the day before. Green captured fifth place overall in the men’s invitational 5000m race with a time of 13:45.73. Carpenter, continuing his momentum from cross-country, claimed fifth place in
the men’s invitational 3000m event with a time of 7:51.51. “I personally look up to Jon Green,” White said. “He’s just such a resilient guy. He’s a day-in, day-out, extremely hard worker and that’s something everybody can admire. Anybody on the team would say that. He’s a really good guy and it’s so nice to watch him run in the longer distance events because they are so hard
mentally. I was really happy.” With the Big East Championship just a week away, White realizes the importance of practice and praised Green’s attitude toward training and his race mentality. “His training is nothing amazing, but it’s extremely consistent,” White said. “He’s always showing up to these races and doing what he has to do. I never really get nervous for him
when he’s racing because I know that he knows what he is capable of doing and that he is very able to do these things, but watching him do it is still very exciting.” Georgetown resumes competition when both the men and the women split travel sites at the Alex Wilson Invitational hosted by the University of Notre Dame and at Penn State Tune-Up this Saturday.
was choreographed. Besides how inconsistent and ridiculous it is to arbitrarily decide to punish Cruz for a dance he has used for many seasons — not to mention the dance’s sentimental value — the league ran into other issues fining the receivers, which persisted with other players throughout the season. How would the league prove that this celebration was previously choreographed? What evidence do they have that Beckham’s pantomimed photographs were practiced as opposed to a spontaneous moment of hilarious genius? The answer: none. Perhaps that is why the fine was rightfully repealed. The reoccurrence of excessive celebration penalties and fines frustrated several NFL teams this season. Fans and players alike were disappointed and confused when the league outlawed Jimmy Graham’s signature goal post “dunk” in 2014. The celebration was a clever personal expression, as Graham’s basketball background is crucial to his identity as a tight end. Since then, these rules have been tightened significantly and have become more arbitrary regarding an “excessive celebration” and fine-worthy offenses related to showmanship. Realistically, no number of articles attempting to
explain the rules could adequately decipher or predict the practical application of the NFL’s policy — a problem the NFL has with a number of its rules, including completed passes and pass interference calls.
If we never see Victor Cruz dance again, the NFL community will have suffered a devastating loss. This offseason, the NFL should either iron out the excessive celebration policy or loosen these strict rules. By deregulating touchdown celebrations, the NFL has a prime opportunity to show fans that football should be fun, and that we should in fact embrace these celebrations that allow fans to see their favorite players in a unique, lighthearted way. If we never see Victor Cruz dance again, the NFL community will have suffered a devastating loss. And with the current celebratory rules, who knows when the next “legal” iconic end zone dance will be created. For now, all we can do is appreciate the memes and the memories. Amanda Christovich is a sophomore in the College. THE ANALYST appears every Friday.
Hoyas Open Season on the Road Against Wildcats WILDCATS, from B10
freshmen. At least one of the rookies will immediately step into a big role, as freshman infielder Ryan Davis will be taking over as the starting shortstop from junior Chase Bushor, who is no longer with the team.
“All year we’ve been talking about how we think this is a special group of guys.” PETE WILK Head Coach
“[Davis] has really impressed me with his poise, honestly, [and] with his talent. He’s just been a really great teammate since he stepped on campus,” Mathews said. A pair of graduate transfers also drew praise from Mathews and Wilk. Pitcher Alex Deise and outfielder Zach Racusin join the team from Florida State University and Marist College, respectively, and look set to take on key roles for Georgetown. Deise adds depth to the bullpen as a left-handed relief pitcher who Wilk expects to enter late-game situations, potentially as the closer. Racusin, meanwhile, should feature as a top-ofthe-lineup hitter along with fellow outfielder DeRenzi. “We’re blessed to have two guys that are really going to help us [Racusin and Deise],” Wilk said. “They’re going to be major players in this team …. We got really lucky with both guys.” The impact of returning veterans, extra field time and new additions will be tested Feb. 17 when Georgetown opens its season away at Davidson for a threegame set. The matchup is the first of several road trips to start the season. The Hoyas are scheduled to play their first 20 games away from home, not returning to Bethesda, Md., for the opener at Shirley Povich field until March 22. In addition to games in Maryland, Virginia and the Caro-
linas, the team’s travels take it to Port Charlotte, Fla., for the Snowbird Baseball Classic. For Wilk and much of the team, the road trips are merely business-asusual for a team looking to escape the winter weather. “Upperclassmen, they have never known anything else,” Wilk said. “We’re just running south until we can get good weather. That should guarantee us to play, and it is important that we play.” Trips as south as Florida should allow the Hoyas to do just that. And as Georgetown begins its season this week, the players have a clear idea of their desired end result for the 2017 season. “All year we’ve been talking about how we think this is a special group of guys. Our goal is to win the Big East Tournament and get a berth in a regional for the NCAA Tournament,” Mathews said. The weekend series against the Wildcats begins Friday night at 6 p.m. in Davidson, N.C.
Junior outfielder Michael DeRenzi, top, posted a .332 batting average while leading the team with 68 hits last season. Sophomore right handed pitcher Jack Cushing, bottom, appeared in 17 games and pitched 57 innings for the Hoyas last season.
Women’s Basketball Georgetown (15-9) at Butler (5-20) Friday, 7:00 p.m. EST McDonough Arena
friday, FEBR UARY 17, 2017
Men’s Lacrosse Georgetown prepares to take on Notre Dame after dropping its season opener to High Point. See B8
Preseason does not mean anything. It’s the end of the year that does.” HEAD COACH PETE WILK
The number of years that the school’s 800-meter record stood before Joe White broke it.
TRACK & FIELD
White Breaks School Record, Men Rise in Rankings Dan Baldwin Hoya Staff Writer
Feb. 11, 2017, has been cemented in Georgetown indoor track and field history as junior Joe White obliterated Georgetown’s 800-meter record with a time of 1:46.44, besting the previously held record by nine-tenths of a second. White finished first in the event at the Iowa State Classic, one of the most prestigious indoor track and field meets of the season. “I was pretty excited,” White said. “I turned around pretty quickly to look at the big screen on the back right, and I saw the time pop up and I got really excited. I looked over and saw one of our coaches, and he was happy for me. We celebrated for a bit after and then it was back to business.”
“Once you just boil it down, you can’t control anybody except for yourself.” Joe White Junior
White’s time ranks fourth in the country this season and he admitted that the men’s indoor 800m record was always in his thoughts. “It was always in the
back of my mind,” White said. “Going into all of the 800s that I run. It’s just nice to finally get it down.” White attributed his success to the guidance of his coaches, including Head Coach Brandon Bonsey, and constant hard work and effort during training sessions. “Our coach — Coach Bonsey — he’s been giving us harder workouts and everything’s just been culminating workout after workout. Consistency, I think, has been the key,” White said of Head Coach Brandon Bonsey. White’s performance, along with those of seniors Jonathan Green and Scott Carpenter, helped the men’s team leap 26 spots in the Division I indoor track and field rankings; the men now rank 25th in the nation. With the pressure of championship season looming over Georgetown, White explained how he manages to stay focused on himself and perform in big moments such as this weekend. “Once you just boil it down, you can’t control anybody except for yourself,” White said. “Instead of thinking about what he’s running or what he’s running or what she’s running for girls, we are focusing on ourselves this year. We’ve had the times to compete with everybody, and we know we are just as good so if we can come out on top that’d be pretty good.” See TRACK, B9
Junior Joe White broke the school record in the 800-meter race by nine-tenths of a second at last weekend’s Iowa State Classic. He finished in first place with a time of 1:46:44. The previous record stood for 25 years.
GU Adds Talent, Ready for Redemption Andrew May Hoya Staff Writer
To say that Head Coach Pete Wilk is results-oriented when it comes to evaluating the Georgetown baseball team would be an understatement. For Wilk, the season is all about the end result. “Preseason does not mean anything. It’s the end of the year that does,” Wilk said. Last year’s end result left room for improvement. The Hoyas missed out on
the Big East Tournament and finished with a 25-29 overall record and an 8-10 Big East record. Despite the losing record, pitchers Matt Smith and David Ellison heard their names called in the Major League Baseball draft, and the program graduated a total of eight seniors. Nevertheless, the Hoyas return some key talent. Two Hoyas — senior pitcher and co-captain Simon Mathews and junior outfielder Michael DeRenzi — received spots on the pre-
season all-Big East team. Mathews finished last season with a 2.45 ERA and five complete games. “Simon has pitched at the highest level you can in the collegiate game and had success there, and even before that I thought he could beat anybody almost in the country,” Wilk said DeRenzi led the team in batting average, total bases and stolen bases. He recorded 20 multi-hit games over a 54-game season. After watching him in preseason, Wilk expects the
Senior outfielder Beau Hall finished last season with a .251 batting average and drove in 24 runs. Hall’s three home runs tied for second on the team.
outfielder to continue to improve in 2017. “If he continues to do what he has done the last two weeks, he’s going to have a really good year,” Wilk said of DeRenzi. With three seasons already under his belt, Mathews has plenty of experience. In his fourth year, however, the co-captain said he believes the team has one advantage heading into the 2017 season that he has not yet enjoyed as a Hoya. For the first time in Mathews’ career, this preseason the Hoyas practiced on an actual baseball field. In the past, the team has managed with indoor work and drills on Cooper Field. It is not hard to imagine how much the team has appreciated the extra fieldwork it received this past preseason. “We’ve been able to get out to our field in Bethesda the last couple weekends and have inter-squads,” Mathews said. “So I think in terms of preparation for this year … we’re miles ahead of anywhere we’ve been in the past.” Wilk echoed his pitcher’s sentiments, mentioning that most years the team usually does not make it to Shirley Povich Field, where the team plays its home games, until about St. Patrick’s Day. “We’re the most game ready we’ve been in five years, I’ll tell you that,” Wilk said. An influx of new talent could bolster the hopes for the Hoyas this season. The team added 12 new players, including nine See WILDCATS, B9
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NFL Celebration Ban Spoils Fun
ootball fans and salsa dancers alike lamented Monday when news broke that the New York Giants released wide receiver Victor Cruz after seven seasons with the franchise. Cruz’s position on the depth chart this season dropped due to low offensive production. His new positioning on the depth chart not only meant that he was no longer quarterback Eli Manning’s first or second receiving option, but also a burden on the team’s salary cap. Despite his absence during the latter half of the 2014 season and entire 2015 season due to a torn patellar tendon and subsequent calf injury, Cruz remains a Giants fan favorite and will be missed by not only the organization but also the team’s fan base. Cruz’s integral role in winning Super Bowl XLVI and his incredible personal story of a local player becoming an iconic member of the Giants offense despite being undrafted are just a few reasons why Cruz’s release is heartbreaking. But what Giants fans
will miss the most is his famed touchdown celebration: the salsa. A tribute to both his grandmother and National Hispanic Heritage month, Cruz debuted his celebratory dance in 2011. The touchdown celebration went viral and quickly became intrinsically tied to Cruz’s identity.
The touchdown celebration went viral and quickly became intrinsically tied to Cruz’s identity. When Cruz recovered from his injuries this season, his first salsa dance celebration was garnished by Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. who dropped to one knee to mimic a paparazzi taking photos of his dancing. But the NFL was quick to end the spectacle: though it was eventually rescinded, both players were initially fined for the celebration as the league speculated it See ANALYST, B9