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life More time to dine without the line P. 9

music Rockin’ prof brings the heat in concert series P. 17

sports Which Bees scored As? P. 19

Volume 29 Issue 20

Films that don’t fall short P. 13


ConU bookstore not kind to Kindle P. 21

Meet your ASFA presidential candidates

Photo by Navneet Pall and Arndell LeBlanc

theconcordian Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2012



he Arts and Science Federation of Associations’ (ASFA) nomination period for its upcoming general election is over, and all candidates running for executive positions were announced on Sunday. Polling will be taking place between Feb. 15 and 17. As the campaign period begins, The Concordian sat down with presidential candidates Caroline Bourbonnière and Charles Brenchley for an inside look at their newly-launched platforms.

Full story on P. 3


Canadian Federation of Students demanding $1.8M Lawsuit between Concordia Student Union and CFS heats up Marilla Steuter-Martin Co-news editor


s legal proceedings continue between the Canadian Federation of Students and the Concordia Student Union, the stakes appear to have gone up. The CFS is claiming that they are now owed $1.8 million in unpaid membership fees. Despite the vote which took place in 2009 at Concordia to discontinue the CSU’s membership in the CFS, the national organization has not recognized the results and still considers the university a member. The CSU has since refused to pay any further membership fees, which continue to rack up. In 2011, the CSU became the eighth student union in three years to try and sue its way out of the CFS. CSU President Lex Gill helped file the initial petition for the vote and said this has been a

chronic pattern with the CFS in recent years. “Historically, the CFS has used mechanisms of ‘unpaid fees’ to prevent members from leaving the organization,” she said. “There is something wrong with an organization that won’t let its members leave without court intervention.” Despite the overwhelming majority of Concordia undergraduates who voted to leave the CFS, the organization’s bylaws state that a vote can’t be held until all fees are paid. Since the lawsuit, the CFS has produced a document which Gill calls “highly suspicious,” claiming acknowledgement of debt from former CSU President Keyana Kashfi. They claim that Kashfi signed a statement prior to the vote confirming that the CSU owes the CFS over $1 million. Gill explained the CFS is demanding unpaid fees dating back to the ‘90s before the Engineering or JSMB faculties were part of the CSU. She went

on to say that they are seeking payments which were made to the office of CFS Quebec, a separate legal entity from CFS’ national office. “[The CFS’s] calculations are illogical,” she said. “I am completely firm in my conviction that we do not owe the CFS $1.8 million and never have.” The CSU, as well as Concordia’s Graduate Students’ Association, are both in the midst of legal proceedings with the CFS, and Gill doesn’t expect to be done anytime soon. “This process takes years,” she said. The CSU is seeking $100,000 in damages from the CFS, citing its actions as being in violation of the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. “The CFS refuses to recognize the democratic will of students,” Gill said. Despite repeated attempts, the CFS never returned phone calls for comment.

Expect shuttle bus delays P. 4

news 2

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Got a news tip?

City in brief Joel Ashak

Valery Fabrikant loses supreme Court bid

Former Concordia University professor Valery Fabrikant who killed four colleagues and wounded another 20 years ago has lost his bid to sue his doctors at the Supreme Court of Canada. Fabrikant, who has been in prison since 1992, had filed proceedings against the physicians who were monitoring his heart condition while in prison. He was previously declared a vexatious litigant, someone who pursues legal action solely to harass. After his request to take his case to the Superior Court of Quebec was denied in August 2011, he decided to file an application with the SCC in September.


Found guilty oF raCial proFiling

The Human Rights Commission ruled in favour of a black Montreal metro rider who wanted to sue the STM for racial profiling. The STM was ordered to pay $23,000 in damages to the victim who was arrested and handcuffed by six officers, and fined for failure to comply with instructions in February 2010. The interception was ruled racially biased and the commission ordered the STM to document all the fines given by the company in order to determine if racial profiling is indeed a problem. This is the first decision by the commission in relation to this type of practice.


against montrealer who Filmed underCoVer poliCe dropped The Montrealer who was facing criminal charges after filming undercover cops during a G20 protest in Montreal saw his charges dropped last Tuesday and is now planning to file a police ethics complaint. Scott Weinstein had been facing a charge of assault on police with a weapon—his bike. By dropping the charges, the Crown is keeping potentially damaging evidence alleging that Montreal police tampered with the digital memory card containing Weinstein’s footage before returning it to its owner. “What they did was trying to overwrite the file, it was pretty obvious,” Weinstein told The Gazette.

Want to be part of The ConCordian’s neWs team? Come by our office on the Loyola campus (CC-431) every Wednesday at 2 p.m. to talk news and pitch stories for upcoming issues. For more information, email


Concordia sexual assault centre project stalling University not doing enough, according to coordinators Alyssa Tremblay Staff writer

A campaign calling for the creation of a sexual assault crisis centre at Concordia is trying to raise student awareness about sexual violence, something they perceive to be an under-reported and neglected issue at the university. The initiative stems from the 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy, but the goal is to get the university to provide both the space and funding for a sexual assault centre on campus. The campaign hopes to see better services, better sensitivity training for service providers and security personnel, and a 24-hour crisis hotline. Programming and campaigns coordinator Bianca Mugyenyi at the 2110 Centre said the goal is to make the crisis centre an institutionalized part of the university while still promoting student involvement. “We think it’s within their mandate and responsibility to students to ensure that something as basic as that exists,” said Mugyenyi. According to an annual report

from Concordia’s Office of rights and responsibilities, nine cases of sexual harassment were filed in the 2010-2011 academic year. However, Mugyenyi said that these numbers can be misleading and appear too low given Concordia’s large population. A survey on sexual violence at Canadian universities conducted in March 2011 by the University of Alberta found that sexual assault centres in seven universities across Canada, including McGill, reported seeing between 90 to 300 clients per year. “It’s under-reported here which means that people aren’t getting the help that they need,” said Mugyenyi. The campaign also aims to improve Concordia’s existing policies that deal with sexual violence. Currently, sexual assault is addressed in the code of rights and responsibilities under sexual harassment. According to documents compiled by the 2110 Centre Sexual Assault Centre campaign, sexual assault needs to have its own separate policy. In these documents, the campaign finds fault with the wording of Concordia’s policies, claiming that they “[repeat] victim-blaming rhetoric and [appear] to discourage students from reporting/filing formal complaints.” They also write that the policies are, overall, ambiguous and not easy to find via Concordia’s website.

“Without clear policy, people who are looking for help can’t access it,” said Mugyenyi. Inconsistent information regarding how to deal with sexual assault on campus can be found on over 15-year-old sheets of paper with emergency contact numbers posted in the women’s washrooms in the Hall building. One of the emergency numbers is listed as Concordia’s “Sexual Harassment Office,” an office that was discontinued sometime in the mid1990s and replaced with the Office of rights and responsibilities. When called, the number, as well as every other number on the list, is out of service. When asked about the posters in the women’s washrooms, Concordia’s advisor on rights and responsibilities, Louise Shiller, said she was not aware they existed and plans to have the information updated immediately. The sexual assault centre campaign brought their demands to the Concordia Student Union council in October, where council passed a motion granting the campaign their endorsement. CSU councillor Irmak Bahar supports the campaign and explained in an interview that a sexual assault centre would make it easier for students to get help. “It’s important when it comes to sexual assault that we have some-

thing more accessible,” said Bahar. She acknowledged that Concordia’s health services provide emergency contraceptives and STI testing, as well as counselling and support for victims of sexual violence, but noted that their office hours are limited from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday. “Health services do what they can,” said Bahar, “but sexual assault doesn’t have a schedule.” Open meetings are held three times a month by campaign organizers to discuss the centre and find support. An online petition calling for support is also available and as of Monday, had just over 200 signatures. “It’s shameful that Concordia hasn’t taken this initiative yet, and I’d like to see that change,” said Anna Frey, a first-year studying communications and sexual studies, who signed the petition. Those lobbying for a sexual assault centre are also trying to raise awareness by organizing educational workshops on sexual violence, distributing flyers around the school about consent and putting together a zine aimed toward survivors of sexual assault. Mugyenyi said the campaign has applied for funding from Concordia’s sustainable action fund and should know within the coming weeks whether their request has been accepted.


Protest unites English- and French-speaking students


restaurant to Find new owner

Rumour has it that Schwartz’s, the famous Montreal restaurant specializing in smoked meat located on StLaurent, has found a new buyer. Hy Diamond, the current owner who took over the business in the 1990s, has suffered from health problems for the last few years and told The Gazette he wanted sell the restaurant, as long as it remained in locals’ hands. The identity of the new owner is not yet known. The news of the restaurant changing owners has come as big news for the city’s smoked meat lovers, as Schwartz’s has been a reference in the industry for years.

Joel Ashak Co-news editor In an effort to show unity between French and English schools in the fight against the proposed $1,625

increase in tuition fees announced by the Liberal government last March, more than 300 students from various Montreal CÉGEPs and universities gathered at Concordia’s Hall building to start a march across downtown Montreal.

From Concordia, they marched towards the Université du Québec a Montréal, shouting their way through McGill University and the Vieux-Montréal CÉGEP. Students from various schools in Montreal felt

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian


Nation in brief


Marilla Steuter-Martin

human rights, trade and pandas Charles Brenchley Caroline Bourbonnière

Interviews conducted by co-news editors Marilla Steuter-Martin and Joel Ashak What would you do if you were elected ASFA president? I am a man for the students and I will represent the majority voice of the students. I have the beat; I have been implementing myself into it. My role would also be to build the youth engagement within Quebec and whatever momentum it is among arts and science students. What are the main points of your platform? First, we really want to build that vibe to make people proud to be arts and science students on both campuses. Second, I want to work with student associations to really empower them. You ran two years ago and lost. What do you have now that you did not have then? I was a first-year student and I wasn’t completely versed in the Concordia community. I really got involved in the student movement at Concordia since the last time I ran for the position. What made you choose to be affiliated? I think it’s important for whoever gets elected next year to have a group of

people that want to work together. Being at Concordia for a few years, I got to know them and I think we have a group of people that is extremely diverse. What is your position on the CSU engaging in legal proceedings to get out of the Canadian Federation of Students? I am no longer connected to [the CFS] in any way. I have definitely made mistakes in the past, but I am now at Concordia and I have seen from within the student movement at Concordia what the Quebec student movement wants and I think it’s important to recognize the vote that took place in 2009 [to leave the CFS]. Right now, CFS has no place here in the Quebec student movement. What differentiates you from other candidates? I think that I bring a lot of skills to the table. I am running with a group of people who have a lot of council experience. The other affiliation is deeply rooted in the political science department downtown but ours is present on both campuses. Moreover, not one person from the other affiliation has been sitting or present at ASFA council meetings.

What would you do if you were elected ASFA president? I think the most important thing to do is strengthen ties with the CSU. There has been a bit of miscommunication between ASFA and the CSU. That’s the way to get things clear. I do want us to have healthy relationships with the press. Many students are not aware of what is going on at Concordia. I want a better ASFA. I want to bring it back on track.

ing [would help]. I also want to do classroom visits, with speeches, to a different class each week.

What are the main points of your platform? I plan to create an ASFA scholarship of $500 for five students not only with high GPAs, but for those who are also involved in the Concordia community. I also want to start ASFA success workshops. ASFA’s job is to provide services to students so they can succeed and show them how to get involved.

What differentiates you from other candidates? I think what ASFA might need is a pragmatic leader who wants to serve the students and get things done. I am honest, I have a clean record. I have a vision, I think big.

How would you get students more involved with ASFA? I think executives need to be more visible to the student population. Also, an online presence with videos updating students on what’s happen-

What made you choose to be affiliated? [Those] I’m affiliated with all demonstrated real drive and good ideas. I know Eric Moses is a perfect fit for VP academic. Carlotta [Longo] would be an amazing VP external. She’s really engaged with fighting tuition hikes.

What is your position on the CSU engaging in legal proceedings to get out of the Canadian Federation of Students? I think it’s very disappointing that the CFS is not giving Concordia their democratic right to get out. The group is supposed to be lobbying for students’ rights and this just seems wrong.

* These interviews have been edited for length.

Stephen Harper is headed to China on a diplomatic visit to discuss oil, trade and investments and rumour has it he won’t be going home empty-handed. Multiple media reports say the prime minister might be returning from his trip with a pair of furry friends in tow. For several years, the Chinese government has employed the tradition of giving panda bears as gifts to promote diplomatic relations, a practice known in the country as “panda diplomacy.” In 2010, when Chinese President Hu Jintao visited Canada, there was talk of a similar nature. When asked about the possible exchange, Harper’s spokesman wasn’t giving anything away. “I wouldn’t wear your bamboo undershorts,” he joked.

the Friendly skies aren’t so Friendly

The transgender community is up in arms about a recently changed section of identity screening regulations at airports which might leave some grounded. NDP transport critic Olivia Chow has drafted a motion to rescind the add-on which states that an air carrier “shall not transport a passenger if the passenger does not appear to be of the gender indicated on the identification he or she presents.”

Children should be spanked and not heard Monday’s issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal includes an article reviewing how the understanding of the effects of physical punishment of children has shifted dramatically in 20 years. In addition to causing a dysfunctional parent-child relationship, children who have experienced physical punishment tend to be more aggressive and are more likely to develop antisocial behaviour. In 2004, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that parents have the right to spank their children, but with certain limits such as not using objects and disallowing hits to the head.


Falling on deaF ears?

Photos by Navneet Pall

the need to express their support furthermore and decided to meet last December in order to find an effective way to demonstrate unity and to solve a potential miscommunication between francophone and anglophone schools.

The slogan of Thursday’s protest symbolically alternated between French and English, with flyers reading: “Don’t fuck with notre éducation.” Thursday’s protest came only a day after the UQAM Faculty of Arts and Science voted in favour

of an unlimited general strike set to take place next March. A similar vote will take place at Concordia during a general assembly on March 7 where undergraduate students will decide whether or not they want to go on a general strike.

A Fredericton woman is planning to launch a formal complaint with Statistics Canada after her deaf parents were treated poorly by a representative. Melissa Hinds says that when her parents asked for an interpreter’s help with a survey, their request was denied. She called the office to complain about the lack of services and an employee replied, “Well, they can read, can’t they?” Hinds stated that for her, “this isn’t even about the survey anymore. I’m sure my parents could care less. This is about a violation of rights.”


Tuesday, February 7, 2012



Shuttle bus route to experience changes St-Jacques exit closing could cause delays in shuttle service George Menexis Assistant opinions editor

The St-Jacques Street exit of the westbound Ville-Marie Expressway will be closed until the beginning of September, and this could cause problems for Concordia’s shuttle bus, which had to change routes as of Feb. 6. The city of Montreal announced the closing of the exit for the second year in a row in order to continue working on the McGill University Health Centre’s superhospital, set to open in 2014 in NDG. The exit was closed last year due to sewer renovations at the construction site and was the source of major tailbacks in traffic. “We advise everyone to come earlier because of this delay,” said shuttle bus driver Tony Vaita. “We’re worried that this may be a problem for rushing students and we are already considering a couple of alternate routes.” One of the routes considered would be turning onto Guy Street after leaving the downtown campus, which leads all the way to St-Jacques Street, where the driver can then continue on the usual

route. The other route would take the shuttle bus west on Sherbrooke all the way to Loyola. Vaita said that both these routes would add a potential 10 to 20 minutes to the usual route time. Concordia spokesperson Cléa Desjardins said it was hard to predict the consequences of the exit’s closing and that no modifications to the schedule will be made until they are sure that changes need to be made. “We won’t know the full effect until we actually experience these routes,” said Desjardins. “If need be, more buses will be put on as we move forward in the year. All we can do for now is advise students to leave extra early, and we’ll take it from there.” The announcement of these new routes has students worrying about being punctual for class, some of them already having trouble making it on time with the existing shuttle bus route and schedule. “I barely make it downtown for my one o’clock class when I finish at Loyola at twelve,” said political science student Demitra Stappas. “I don’t know how I’m going to make it with the new route.” Psychology student David Seena also expressed concerns about overcrowding on the bus. “The shuttle is already jammed when it comes,” he said. “Imagine now. More people are going to be waiting for the next one.”

Graphic by Sean Kershaw


Dance professor Ken Roy loses battle with cancer

Photo courtesy of Louis-Eylan Martin

On Jan. 28, 2012, dance artist, professor and mentor Ken Roy died at the age of 49 after succumbing to cancer. Originally from Nova Scotia, Ken began his professional career working under Peter Boneham as a dancer with Le Groupe de la Place Royale. His career allowed him to travel around the world performing with many of Montreal’s well known choreographers such as JeanPierre Perreault, Louise Bédard and Sylvain Émard. Ken had been a staple in the Concordia contemporary dance department for the last seven Photo courtesy of Louise Bédard Danse years, teaching daily technique classes and providing support to the students’ physical and creative training. He pushed the boundaries of what each student believed to be their personal potential,bringing into the studio an extraordinary amount of visceral force,dedication, and above all, joy and passion for movement. While his death is a great loss, all of the students and staff recognize his presence is not lost and continues to inspire their artistic endeavours. In the words of Ken Roy: “We’re dancers, this is what we do.” - Heather Stewart

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian



‘I am fundamentally an academic’: Judith Woodsworth Former president says teaching at Concordia is ‘where she belongs’ Sarah Deshaies Quebec bureau chief

MONTREAL (CUP) — After walking away in late 2010 from the top position at Concordia University with just over $700,000 in severance pay, it turns out that former president Judith Woodsworth has been quietly teaching at the university since the start of the winter semester. This time, she’s not returning to the executive offices on the upper floors of the administration GM building, but to an office on the sixth floor of the McConnell building where the études françaises department is located. Twice a week, Woodsworth heads to the new MB building, where she teaches two small 400-level courses on translation. “I am fundamentally an academic,” Woodsworth said in a phone interview with Canadian University Press when asked why she would return to Concordia after her dismissal. “I felt that the academic life was something that was really very much a part of me, and I wanted to come back and continue where I left off when I left Concordia 14 years ago.” Returning to Concordia in 2008 as president was like a “homecoming,” said Woodsworth, though she lasted only two and a half years as president. “It wasn’t all smooth when I came back, but I feel still that this is a place where I belong. Some people might find it strange, but they’re focusing on the wrong things, maybe,” she suggested. Education Minister Line Beauchamp told a reporter on Feb. 1 that she had asked Concordia for more information, saying she’d like to know the circumstances for her return. “Yesterday, when I saw the news, I asked for certain explanations,” Beauchamp said. “Phone calls were made.” Concordia spokesperson Cléa Desjardins confirmed that on Jan. 31, “senior of-

“I Wanted to come back and contInue Where I left off When I left concordIa 14 years ago,” saId former conu presIdent JudIth WoodsWorth about her return to teachIng. ficials at Concordia were in touch with the office of Minister Beauchamp and answered their questions on the subject of Judith Woodsworth’s return to the university.” The minister’s office could not be reached for comment. In the last year, while on unpaid leave, Woodsworth updated her book on the history of translation and travelled to Africa as a consultant to university bodies in Ghana and Kenya. She notified Concordia she was ready to return to teaching over the summer. Woodsworth’s dismissal raised the ire of students, staff, alumni and the public when she was let go under mysterious circumstances a few days before Christmas in 2010. Her severance package raised eyebrows about university funding, since Woodsworth had requested, with other university leaders, that the provincial government raise tuition fees. Tuition fee increases in Quebec will begin in fall 2012. “I realize that it doesn’t sit well when people think of their individual costs when tuition goes up,” said Woodsworth, who nevertheless added that it is “normal” to receive compensation when contracts are terminated, and that her predecessor, Claude Lajeunesse, left with a larger

The Concordian

is looking to hire a team of advertising representatives to generate advertisements for the printed and online editions of our weekly newspaper. The team is expected to target local businesses and clients that will be of interest to the Concordia community. They will be working with the advertising manager and earning commission on the external ads they bring in. Applicants must be self-motivated as the positions involve cold-calling and emailing, going door-todoor and promoting the newspaper by advertising, postering and attending university and community events. This is a great opportunity to get involved at Concordia while also applying knowledge learned in class out in the real world (and make some extra money on the side.) Interested candidates must send an email to with a copy of their resume and a brief description of their personal background, as well as which neighbourhood they would like to focus on (Loyola or SGW).

The Concordian

severance package in hand. The dismissal of two presidents within a few years stirred up outrage, with media nationwide taking note. Last summer, three external investigators released the Shapiro report, the full cost of which came to about $78,000. The investigation condemned Concordia’s governance, saying the university needed to overcome a “culture of contempt.” But is it okay for Woodsworth to be teaching students after being fired as president? “The university obviously thinks it’s perfectly appropriate. Like all academic administrators, Dr. Woodsworth received an academic appointment when she was hired on as president,” said Desjardins, “so she just took up that opportunity after that relationship was terminated.” The reaction on campus to the return of a former administrator has been minimal. “The two jobs are not connected,” said Maria Peluso, president of the Part-time Faculty Association, who pointed out that academics frequently return to teaching positions after their

time as administrators. “There’s nothing unusual about that.” Lex Gill, president of the Concordia Student Union, agreed: “The reality is, being a university professor is different than being an administrator,” she said. “I just don’t understand why she would want to come back.” Erik Chevrier, a representative of the Graduate Students’ Association on the Board of Governors, said Woodsworth’s departure raised questions about the school’s transparency. “We tried to address this by putting in transparent measures in a series of proposals [...] and all of them, last meeting, every single one of them, was shot down,” he said. The suggested measures included filming board meetings and increasing seating space for the audience. “That’s more of a concern for me — since her departure, since they let her go, they’re really not looking [at making governance more open],” said Chevrier. A casual survey of students milling around the Webster Library downtown showed some students were unaware of who Woodsworth is. The ones who had heard about it were not concerned. “If we don’t really know the whole story [about the dismissal], it’s not bad that she came back,” said history student Mara Stancana. “It doesn’t affect my daily life at school. The goings-on of the administration doesn’t change anything for me,” said Mohamed Azab, an English student. Woodsworth said she misses meeting a variety of people in her previous position, but that she won’t be seeking any administrative positions any time soon. While Woodsworth has dropped hints in the past that she was forced out of her position, she indicated that she would not discuss the details of her dismissal because of a non-disclosure agreement.

The Concordia Council on Student Life (CCSL) makes funds available to support projects that enhance or contribute to the quality of student life at Concordia.

Do you have an exciting idea for an event that will engage your fellow Concordia students? Are you planning on producing a journal to help Concordia students gain experience in publishing and exposure for their work? Dreaming of starting up that new initiative to improve student life on campus but lacking the funds to do so?


Winter Deadline: Friday, February 17, 2012 at 5pm Please contact the Dean of Students Office with any questions: SGW–H-637 ext.3517 / Loyola-AD-121 ext.4239 Or email to:


Tuesday, February 7, 2012



Head & Hands finds heart and soul in new director NDG non-profit organization welcomes Jon McPhedran Waitzer Jeremy East Contributor


ontreal’s champions of youth empowerment and positive social change, NDG-based Head & Hands, has welcomed new director Jon McPhedran Waitzer. As he enters his new position, McPhedran Waitzer becomes part of a decades-old legacy of social change for the city’s youth, a legacy that has become an especially vital part of the Côtedes-Neiges—Notre-Dame-de-Grâce community. Sitting with him to discuss his new role in his office on Sherbrooke Street, he exhibited a level of contentment that shows he could not be more thrilled to be on board. “People bring their whole selves to work here in a way that I’ve never encountered anywhere else,” Jon said of his new team. Offering a multitude of services aimed at promoting the physical and mental well-being of Montreal’s youth since its inception in 1970, Head & Hands has become the unofficial home of positive activism in NDG. By offering free social, legal and medical counselling, drop-in clinics and much more, the group has become a trusted, welcoming space for thousands of Montreal’s young people. With over 320 volunteers contributing over 9,000 work hours in the last year alone, it’s easy to compare the group to something of a family. “This is an organization that approaches social change in a way that includes a cultural aspect, which is so rare,” he said. “It really is like a big happy family.”

McPhedran Waitzer comes to Head & Hands with considerable experience in both the business and non-profit sectors. Upon graduating from McGill, he worked as a consultant with McKinsey & Company before moving to Berlin in 2009 to work as director for Ashoka International’s Globalizer social entrepreneurship program. “It’s been a long and winding course to get here, which is exactly where I want to be,” said McPhedran Waitzer. He described his decision to study linguistics and politics at McGill as an attempt to differentiate himself from the world he knew growing up in Toronto. Upon his graduation, he came to realize that his heart remained in the social and cultural sectors, something he learned from his role models. His mother, Marilou McPhedran, is widely considered to be one of Canada’s most distinguished voices on gender equality. “My mother made sure that I was introduced to the world of activism at a very young age,” he said, exhibiting his continued devotion to that cause with the word “feminist” tattooed across his digits. “I attended my first women’s rights rally when I was four years old.” However, gender equality is one cause among many that McPhedran Waitzer holds close to his heart. While his amiable demeanour is present at all times, it becomes obvious within moments of speaking with him that a passion for positive social change is an immense part of his life. “What excites me most are the points of intersection between different social struggles,” he said in his quick, yet expressive style of elocution. “Head & Hands is amazing because we serve such a wide range of communities in a holistic and welcoming way.” As director, McPhedran Waitzer plans to improve the vital services that Head & Hands provides, while continuing to stimulate the organization’s growth in a social and financial context.

mcgIll graduate Jon mcphedran WaItzer brIngs hIs non-profIt experIence to ndg.


Concordia celebrates Black History Month Events include speakers series, film screenings, workshops and more Melissa Moncada Contributor


ebruary marks the start of Black History Month and Concordia’s student organizers have a line-up of activities which will celebrate Black culture and traditions. The month will include film screenings, workshops and a lecture series. Concordia will be presenting a workshop called “It’s All Good Hair — A Natural Black Hair Workshop & Discussion,” which will feature a discussion panel where professionals will talk about how to take care of your hair, what products to use and how to protect it from the cold weather. The event will be held in the CSU Lounge on the 7th floor of the Hall Building on Feb. 16. at 7 p.m. Also, the CSU Speaker Series Lecture featuring Martin Luther King III will be held in H-110 on Feb. 10 at 5:30 p.m. Finally, for those cinema lovers, a screening and discussion of Cool Runnings is taking place on the 7th floor of the Hall building on Feb. 18 at 6:30 p.m. Some other Black History Month-related events have already taken place. The African fashion show, promoting African culture and its colourful and creative clothing, was

It not only makes everyone aware of Black history and the rights that people fought for, but by celebrating it, we realize the relevance of other cultures. - Denzel Ryan-Stephens

held at the D.B. Clark Theatre at Concordia on Feb. 4. A Black History Month trivia night was also organized at Reggie’s, as well as a potluck featuring a variety of delicious African foods. Denzel Ryan-Stephens, a student at Vanier College attending one of the events, believes that celebrating Black History Month is an essential part of living in a diverse community. “It not only makes everyone aware of Black history and the rights that people fought for, but by celebrating it, we realize the relevance of other cultures,” he said. This month’s activities were organized through the collaboration of groups such as the Concordia Student Union, the African Students Association of Concordia, and Concordia’s chapter of the African and Caribbean Students’ Network of Canada. For full details of events, visit www.csu. and search Black History Month schedule.

World in brief Joel Ashak

JustiFied poliCe brutality?

There is nothing worse than someone who cuts in line. The Hope Mill, N.C., police proved they take that kind of infraction very seriously when they subdued a McDonald’s customer with a stun gun. The 37-year-old woman, who pushed in front of the line at the drive-thru, was asked by restaurant employees to move to the end and when she refused, someone contacted the police. Police officers zapped her twice before she reportedly “flopped out of the car like a fish,” a customer told the Fay Observer.

another kind oF “bowl” happened last week

What do you get for eating 337 chicken wings in 30 minutes? While most people would answer “a tummy ache,” Japanese champion Takeru Kobayashi can say $20,000 because that’s exactly what he got after competing in the 20th annual Wing Bowl, held in Philadelphia. Over 17,000 spectators flocked to an indoor arena on Friday to watch Kobayashi, weighing in at just 127 pounds, devour a record-breaking amount of chicken. The previous record, a stunning 255 wings, was broken seemingly without a hiccup, literally. Perhaps the most impressive part of all is that he managed to keep it all down.


Cookies are so muCh Cheaper

Chinese parents are willing to pay the big price to know their toddler’s future. Several kindergartens in northern China offered a palm reading test to reveal students’ intelligence and potential for no less than 1,200 yuan ($190). Reuters reported that parents did not seem reluctant to the idea as many of them flocked to the schools to make their children take the test. Fortune telling has deep roots in Chinese tradition and the one-child policy in Communist-ruled China has made parents put great hopes—and pressure— on their children.

pranking the pigs

Even when the criminals in Vermont get put behind bars, that doesn’t stop them from making a mockery of police. Inmates working at a correctional unit’s print shop indulged in a small act of rebellion by playing a practical joke and including an image of a pig into the state crest. The crest can be found on 30 police cruisers and wasn’t noticed for over a month, said officials. The change was small and barely noticeable, for the image was hidden in the spots of the usual cow in front of a mountain range. It appears to be a reference to the pejorative word for police, said police spokeswoman Stephanie Dasaro.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Write to the editor: travel

Graphic by Maya Pankalla

Becoming a youth leader

One Concordia student’s AIESEC trip to Austria opened his eyes Shaimaa El-Ghazaly Assistant life editor


pon entering university, you usually want to make the most out of your university experience. A big part of that experience is developing your personal skills and being exposed to different cultures. There are different organizations at Concordia that could help you do just that. AIESEC is one of those organizations. It is a global student-run, non-profit organization aimed at developing leadership skills through international exchange and internship programs or local leadership programs. “AIESEC provides a lot of opportunities for students to develop their leadership by getting them to do hands-on activities, so it’s not just by listening. We try to empower

our members so they can actually have their own project and gain experience while doing it,” said Naomi Ko, AIESEC’s incoming VP of information and communication management. In order to fully understand the AIESEC experience, there is no better way than to dive into a real story of a Concordia student. Meet Curtis Deschambault, who is currently holding a year-long AIESEC position in Austria. Deschambault joined AIESEC upon entering Concordia in 2007 in order to indulge in the university experience and to travel around. After attending the AIESEC information session, he realized that the organization offered him both of those experiences and he eagerly jumped at the opportunity to take part. He started going to conferences which helped him learn more about the organization. “It was a really good chance for me to expand on things that I have not really looked at in my life, like how to manage my skills, how to motivate people and how to implement real life projects,” said Deschambault. “It was a challenge at the beginning but I definitely grew quite a bit from it.”

Last December, Deschambault decided to apply to go to Austria in order to work for the AIESEC national team. His role is to coordinate their two internship programs on a national level and to expand AIESEC’s volunteer abroad program in Austria. In addition to that, he works on making partnerships between Austria and other AIESEC countries. As for living in a foreign country, Deschambault found it to be a comfortable and easy transition. He says Austria is a privileged country, with a very good standard of living and minimal homelessness. The language barrier didn’t seem to affect him negatively either. The international language in AIESEC is English, which facilitated his communication with others. He describes people in Austria as supportive and understanding of his linguistic obstacles. Deschambault is currently surrounded by seven nationalities in the AIESEC team in Austria, including Egyptian and Hungarian. “It’s a diverse cultural experience for me, so it’s really interesting. I’m really enjoying it a lot and learning cultural leadership as well. I’m experiencing how different cultures interpret leadership,” said Deschambault.

The AIESEC experience, although enriching in many ways, does not come without a few challenges. Deschambault was recently in Kenya for an international leadership conference with about 600 delegates from AIESEC’s 110 member countries. He said that he found it was sometimes overwhelming to have to deal with so many different cultures in the same place. However, he did have the chance to talk with people from different countries about world and leadership issues. One of the biggest advantages that AIESEC provided Deschambault was being able to travel across the world. So far, he has travelled to 12 countries, allowing him to visit four out of the seven continents. Deschambault says that he never imagined that he would be able to travel this much. Given all of his experiences so far with AIESEC, Deschambault says his time with the program has been worth the minor challenges. “It was definitely an eye-opening experience. It was probably the best decision I made when I entered university.” For more information, visit www.aiesec. ca/concordia.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012



The perils of working for tips Jobs in the service industry can be pretty inhospitable Sarah Del Giallo The Eyeopener

TORONTO (CUP) — While you’re sitting comfortably in a restaurant, the service will cross your mind. Maybe the drinks took too long to arrive or your appetizer was missing a sauce. But when your server arrives with your meal, smiling and asking if there’s anything else they can get you, your mind turns to your food. When you finally assess that tip, you might want to consider that your server hasn’t eaten for the last eight hours or so.

Skipping your breakS Virginia Connors, 19, is a second-year child and youth care student at Ryerson. She works parttime as a waitress at Joey at the Eaton Centre. She regularly goes four to seven hours without a break in the one-inch heels that are a mandatory part of her uniform. “It’s too busy during the night shifts to take a break,” said Connors. Connors usually chooses to skip her breaks to avoid losing her tables to another server. “They don’t offer breaks, you just know that you’re entitled to them. I’ve gone almost 10 hours without a break, and that’s at my discretion,” she said. “While I’m working I don’t notice it so much, as compared to after work and I realize I haven’t eaten — then I’m tired.” According to Ontario’s employment standards act, an employee is to work no more than five hours straight without a break of at least 30 minutes. Jennifer Savage at the Ministry of Labour said, “It’s not the choice of the employee, it’s law.” According to Savage, if employees aren’t getting their minimum 30-minute breaks, the employer can be fined. “The employer has to ensure they [take their break].” The inability to take proper breaks is a common problem for servers. Natalie Rineshore, whose name has been changed, is a Ryerson student who works in a sports bar on King St. West. “If it is a busy night, like a 14-hour shift, you really don’t get a break unless you plan ahead and take one at 4 o’clock before the 5 o’clock rush.” But Rineshore’s main concern isn’t breaks — it’s the required uniforms.

DreSSing the part For Connors at Joey, the heels are a hindrance, but her uniform is otherwise comfortable as long as the air conditioning isn’t too cold. But Rineshore is more upset by her company’s dress code. “Low cut shirt, very low cut, to the point where bra is exposed. The cup of the bra, and the wire, everything’s exposed. And mini skirts and knee high boots,” she said. Rineshore said the knee-high boots need to have at least a one-and-a-half to two-inch heel. According to Rineshore, some guests don’t like the uniforms and have filled out comment cards about how revealing they are. One guest wrote an online review saying the bar was more akin to “an upscale gentlemen’s club.” “Our managers are all men. So obviously they’re enjoying it and it’s helping to promote the image of the restaurant that they want, but these comment cards have been filled out, handed to a manager, the manager reads them, laughs at them, rips them up and throws them in the garbage,” said Rineshore. “So they don’t get sent to corporate. No one finds out about this. And even if they did get sent to corporate, who knows what they would do

Photo by Sophia Loffreda

about it,” she said. “People have said we make Hooters look like Chuck E. Cheese’s.” Regardless of the clothing, Rineshore’s main concern is the boots. “I had to host on the patio in boots, and it was 30 degrees and my legs are sweating, and they get mad if you have a cup of water on the host stand, because they don’t want that image to be portrayed of you just sitting and drinking and socializing,” she said. “They want you to look like you’re professional. But I’m sweating in my boots, literally.” Rineshore said people have wiped out on the restaurant’s cement floor which has very little friction. “People could get injured just by falling,” she said. “Waiting hot plates? You could burn a guest.” According to Rineshore, the serving staff of about 30 employs only two men and one male bartender. The male servers are not required to wear equally provocative uniforms. Jennifer Ramsay, communications coordinator for Toronto’s Human Rights Legal Support Centre, expressed some concerns over Rineshore’s situation. “If only the women are being asked to dress provocatively, then that could be [discriminatory],” she said There have been legal cases throughout Canada of female employees fighting against revealing uniforms. The 1982 Ontario case of Ballentyne v. Molly N’ Me Tavern favoured Susan Ballentyne who was offered a serving job with a topless dress code. A 1997 case in Quebec favoured female employees when the establishment imposed a uniform of short skirts, tight tops and high heels, similar to the uniforms at Rineshore’s restaurant. But the human rights commission doesn’t take action against offensive dress codes without a complaint. “If the employer could argue that it’s absolutely necessary for them to wear this uniform then that’s that,” said Ramsay. But she said she finds it difficult to believe an employer could argue that successfully.

injury reServationS Kristine Norris, 20, is a fourth-year dance student who was a waitress at Cedarhill Golf and Country Club in Ottawa in 2009. Once, while setting up for a banquet, she was asked to set up a nine-foot table by herself.

It fell on her toe as she tried to take it down. She had to ice her foot for about 45 minutes, and she said no report was filed for her injury. While that was her only instance of getting hurt at work, like her fellow servers, she often went without her breaks. “I would work 14-hour shifts on the hot dog cart … I couldn’t go to the washroom ever, because I had a cash box,” she said. In order to go to the bathroom, she would wait for the beverage cart worker to drive over and watch her station, but that wasn’t often.

When Norris was working weddings, she would start at 4 p.m. or 5 p.m. and work until 4 a.m. if she was closing. She said she would get one 30-minute break if she was lucky. She was warned about the hours and the breaks when she applied for the job, but she took the position anyway. “Anytime you’re in an interview, you’re just going to [nod] your head and say yes,” Norris said. “You want a paycheque at the end of the day.”

The Concordia Council on Student Life (CCSL) makes funds available to support projects that enhance or contribute to the quality of student life at Concordia.

Do you have an exciting idea for an event that will engage your fellow Concordia students? Are you planning on producing a journal to help Concordia students gain experience in publishing and exposure for their work? Dreaming of starting up that new initiative to improve student life on campus but lacking the funds to do so?


Winter Deadline: Friday, February 17, 2012 at 5pm Please contact the Dean of Students Office with any questions: SGW–H-637 ext.3517 / Loyola-AD-121 ext.4239 Or email to:

Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Skip the line with LEX-IT Two Concordia students are making fast food faster Paula Rivas Life editor “Pre-order, prepay, pickup—it is as easy as that!” explains Charles Azrak, recent Concordia finance graduate, about his latest business venture. The company he co-founded with his other business partner, Richard Btaiche, a graduate of Concordia’s computer engineering program, is called LEX-IT. LEX-IT is an ideal solution for busy students or business professionals, too famished and far too impatient to wait in a long line for their lunch or dinner. Once you visit, you can access a list of LEX-IT partner restaurants from which you can order food for pickup at a specified time in the future. Food can be ordered through the LEX-IT website or iPhone app. Other smartphone devices are on the way, too. Once food has been ordered, LEX-IT partner restaurants prepare it to your specifications for you to pick up at an indicated time. All you have to do when picking up the food is to tell them your PIN, which is provided when you order through LEX-IT. You can do all of this while sitting and waiting for class to finish, or on your way to your morning class, or in the shuttle while switching between campuses, all conveniently at your fingertips. “Students can pick up their breakfast on the way to the class or a snack during classroom breaks, something that they usually have no time for,” said Btaiche. Some of the LEX-IT partner restaurants include: Subway, Liquid Nutrition, Thai Express, Gourmet Burger, Al-Taib, Chateau Kabab, Lunchbox and others. Many more are on the way, explained Azrak. “It took us months to build relationships with restaurant owners and to find out the best way to work with them.” But what’s the best thing about LEX-IT? It’s free—the price that you pay is the same that you would pay if you purchased your food at the restaurant. The way LEX-IT makes money is by taking a percentage of the sales through an established contract with the restaurants. “This [service] is a new concept that we are certain will be used by many Concordia and other university students,” said Azrak. The idea for the name “LEX-IT” was inspired by Azrak’s friend who, during the period where they were brainstorming to find a company name, had a baby and called her Lexia. “We realized that there was a good definition behind it because the Latin term lex mercatoria refers to a system of custom and best practice. We also wanted for people to view LEX-IT as a way of being, a system of established norms and behaviour. It all really came together,” said Btaiche. Azrak and Btaiche teamed up on this project in October 2010. “From day one, Richard and I clicked,” said Azrak, beaming as he explained how both of them are similar in their ambition and hard-working attitude. “In addition to us working so well together, we must also give a lot of credit to our board of directors, who provided an invaluable help on our business strategy and legal matters,” said Azrak. “He is a machine,” said Azrak of Btaiche. “Richard has the best memory, he is a perfectionist, he likes to balance everything in his life. If a pixel is missing in a picture Richard will stop everything and fix it.” Btaiche spoke highly of Azrak too. “He is very patient, and he is a very positive and creative person, a machine too,” said Btaiche. Btaiche was one of four students who received a co-op entrepreneurship award during his last year at Concordia. He was born in Lebanon, grew up in Saudi Arabia, and came to Montreal in 2007 to complete his studies at Concordia. Even in

Lebanon, Btaiche could not turn off his entrepreneurial extinct, as he started creating small businesses, such as an Internet cafe. “Even when I was very young I was an efficient person, always thinking of ways to save time and to optimize whatever there is,” he said. Azrak, on the other hand, took a less direct path. Originally from Syria, but born in Montreal, Azrak moved around from Saudi Arabia to Dubai and back to Montreal. “I never really knew what I wanted to do, I switched programs a few times [between MIS, finance, marketing and one semester of law at the Université de Montréal], but I knew whatever I decided to do it was going to be interesting.” This is not the first start-up idea that Btaiche and Azrak have embarked on. While Azrak was studying finance at Concordia, he teamed up with Btaiche to start a charity that would raise funds to purchase laptops for orphanages. Btaiche explained to me that starting a business is not as easy as it seems, specifying that they work 12 to 14 hours a day on perfecting their product and growing the business. “People don’t understand the drive and the energy that we have. When it is 1 a.m. on Saturday and you are shooting business ideas to each other through texts and emails, something is wrong,” joked Azrak. In the beginning, LEX-IT struggled finding technical talent to help build their product, invested large amounts of money, and Azrak took the risk of quitting his job to dedicate himself to their creation. Many young student entrepreneurs may have their fears of not having enough money, being afraid that the competition would be overwhelming, or that the product won’t sell. For them, Btaiche offered some advice. “I think that Montreal is a really good place to start a business, there are a lot of resources and support that you can benefit from and you should follow your gut and don’t be afraid in venturing and investing some money, because the experience that you get from it and the journey that you go LeX-it aLLowS you to Skip the Line when orDering fooD. photo by navneet paLL on is really priceless,” he said. Azrak emphasized the importance of keeping your eye on your goal, maintaining focus, avoiding distractions and choosing your business partners wisely. “If you will ever have business partners, make sure you’ve worked with them before. Being friends with someone does not mean that you will work well together, it is completely different. Also, I suggest reading biographies and books of interesting entrepreneurs to give you LET US CREATE YOUR WELLNESS TODAY ideas and a better underWITH TOMORROW’S MEDICINE standing.” Ambitious plans lie SERVICES ahead for the LEX-IT team. “What we are focused on • Medical consultation right now is making sure • Emergency visits that Concordia students • Complete laboratory services love LEX-IT. We want them to just LEX-IT every day! It takes a lot of work, often through trial and error, to LABORATORY come up with the best experience, but with the support • Blood tests of the students, university • Screening for STDs - HIV community and our partner • HPV test restaurants, we are certain • Pap smear (Vaginal cytology) to get it done,” said Azrak. • Food intolerance screening “Our plan is to revolutionize the way people order food, 2055 MANSFIELD STREET, MONTREAL, QUEBEC, H3A 1Y7 • 514 345-1356 one order at a time.” For more information, visit




Tuesday, February 7, 2012


food wars

La guerra di la pizza Two wood-fired oven classics go head-tohead Stephanie Laleggia Contributor


iL focoLaio Il Focolaio is a family-run pizzeria that has developed quite a reputation since 1984. It’s clean and spacious with an open-kitchen concept that’s fun to watch while waiting for your pizza. There’s a huge Italian flag over the bar, right beside the two televisions that are usually playing a soccer game. The front removable window is a great touch in the summer if you’re not the type to eat out in the heat. Its prime location in Phillips Square is great for people-watching in the summer on the terrace, but it could sometimes lead to a wait during the lunchtime rush. The service is always fast and pleasant and even with the large selection of pizzas, I have never witnessed a wrong order. With a choice of 70 pizzas and five calzones, the menu can be quite overwhelming to a newcomer. Lucky for the rookies, the menu offers a legend that helps categorize the pizzas under cheese, meat, seafood, vegetables and even tofu. The chefs are extremely generous with the toppings and always manage to be consistent with the wood-oven thin crust. There’s just the right amount of tomato sauce to taste without making the pizza too soggy. Even without the spicy oil, the sauce has a little kick to it that brings all the delicious ingredients together. My personal favourite is #59, the Capo Franco: a thin-crust pizza topped with tomato sauce, capicollo, mozzarella, eggplant, garlic and blue cheese. Grade: A

iL focoLaio anD pizzeria napoLetana’S authentic pieS are pizza Done right. photo by Sophia LoffreDa

pizzeria napoLetana Pizzeria Napoletana is a Montreal landmark, a beloved favourite since 1948. Even after six decades, this pizzeria is still one of the last remaining Italian restaurants in Little Italy. For some, it is a reminder of the community they grew up in and a taste of the old country. “It’s home sweet home,” said 53-year-old Pizza Napoletana regular Julia Clarizio. “It feels like being at my mother’s around the kitchen table.” The restaurant may not be in the middle of St-Laurent, but its location on Dante is not one to be forgotten. With an open terrace in the summer, across the street from a park and a church, the restaurant has a very “old paese” feeling to it. The inside is very spacious and has many long tables for big groups. Even after all these years, the fake tree in the middle of the room still stands strong. What people love about Pizzeria Napoletana is that they haven’t changed recipes over the decades. The technique and ingredients have been passed on from generation to generation. The crust is a little thicker than Focolaio’s, but it’s light and evenly thin throughout the whole pizza. The toppings are perfectly dispersed to get a taste of everything with each bite. The arugula is fresh, the mozzarella di bufala is coated with a touch of olive oil, and the prosciutto is the real deal. The tomato sauce is impeccable and made fresh everyday. Oh, and I forgot to mention, it’s a bring your own wine restaurant—a perfect place to bring your nonno’s homemade wine, or to just save some money off the bill by bringing your own favourite bottle. Grade: A+ I don’t like to take sides and choose one over the other, because honestly, they’re two of my favourite pizzerias in Montreal. However, if I had to choose which one to bring my cousin from Italy, it would be Pizzeria Napoletana. Why? Besides the location and homey feeling of the restaurant, it was the tomato sauce that did it for me. You could dress a pizza with the best ingredients, but if the sauce isn’t great, then your pizza is a fail. It’s the nonna of toppings; she may sometimes be overbearing, but without her, the family, like the pizza, falls apart. Il Focolaio is located at 1223 Square-Phillips St. and Pizza Napoletana at 189 Dante St.


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rowing up in an Italian household, finishing everything on my plate and asking for seconds became requirements at my grandparents’ house. Lucky for me, I’ve developed quite an appetite for carbohydrates and homemade wine. Though I was blessed with two Italian grandmothers, whose main priority was to excessively feed their families, I have been repeatedly faced with this question: Which nonna cooks better? I have never been faced with a tougher decision—until I had to choose between these two pizza spots that is. The beauty of a pizza is that you can top it and spice it up to reflect any culture, whether it may be with pineapple for Hawaii, jalapenos for Mexico or Tandoori chicken for India. It is a blank canvas whose roots go back to Napoli (Naples). Italians take their pizza very seriously. It is an art form, a combination between the right balance of delicious ingredients. A crust that is perfectly cooked when the bottom isn’t burned and the slice can hold its own. A fresh tomato sauce that isn’t too sweet or too acidic, with a kick to it without being spicy. The toppings must be fresh, and if homemade—even better. Though this may not be Italy, Montreal isn’t lacking good pizza. In fact, we even have a few pizzerias that have been approved to reach authentic Italian standards. I’ve been assigned on this journey to compare two pizzeria giants and conclude on a winner. The first, Il Focolaio; a downtown gem with a busy clientele. The second, Pizzeria Napoletana; a Montreal landmark and symbol for Little Italy. I suggest you order a pizza before you read on—this will be torture if you have an empty stomach.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Write to the editor: cinema politica

Sweet dreams are made of this

Black Diamond untangles the darklywoven wave of soccer program ASPIRE Brandon Judd Staff writer


hile the “rags to riches through hard work” narrative may anchor capitalist ethos, it lacks the glamour we tend to think should accompany success these days. Slow aggregation just isn’t sexy. No one strives to be Cornelius Vanderbilt anymore; Jonathan Duhamel or Mark Zuckerberg feature in today’s schemes and dreams. And, though it may be the American Dream’s most exclusive kin, the story of the elite athlete, say Michael Jordan, is perhaps coveted most. This shift from Vanderbilt to Jordan also alters the character of the almost-made-its. Those who worked hard to build a business, but never neared the staggering success of the Commodore, still built something; they won’t be remembered as titans of business, but they’re not often cautionary tales. The same cannot be said about elite athletes. For every LeBron James, there’s a handful of Hook Mitchells: athletes who came close to the big time but are derailed through bad decisions, bad management or simple bad luck. Now imagine the kids striving to become the poster on their wall who face higher stakes, consequences even more dire and have no semblance of a legal safety net to protect them. This gets you somewhat close to the situation

documented in Black Diamond: Fool’s Gold. The film focuses on young boys in Ivory Coast and Ghana who share dreams of playing professional soccer, not just for the glamour but, as one of the 13year-olds says in earnest, to repay their mothers for all they did to feed their growing kids. It’s immediately clear most of these kids will never play professionally, not in Uruguay or Japan and certainly not in Europe; there’s far more of them than there are spots in the pros. So there’s a feeling of dread pervading their conversations with the filmmakers about playing for Barcelona or Juventus or Marseilles. And it’s not long before we realize the kids aren’t just fighting against statistics. We’re introduced to a program called ASPIRE Africa through a talent call on Ghanaian television. We later see their van parked at Accra’s main square, blaring “your dreams will come true, your dreams will come true” over the roof-mounted loudspeaker. Called the largest football talent search in history, the Qatari-backed program annually screens 500,000 13-year-olds from seven countries, hoping to find Europe’s next imported stars. We join the 50 finalists in Ivory Coast and in Ghana, where they are playing for scouts from football royalty. ASPIRE looks benevolent on the surface, providing a stage and spectators with legitimate clout. But a little digging unearths a sinister network manipulating the boys and conning their families. Agents and managers who attend the showcase offer positions in Austria or Morocco, if the kids can pay up front fees of three or four thousand dollars. When parents balk, they are asked why they would damage their

kid’s chances for overhead costs sure to be recouped 10 times over. Your child will be happy and your finances secure, they say, but only if you pay now. Not many parents are able to resist this dual-pronged entreaty. The players arrive, bright-eyed and ready to make their mark, only to be abandoned penniless in a foreign country. It turns out ASPIRE is more of an early screener for other semi-pro teams; the 13-year-olds are too young to train, but scouts want to know who to keep their eyes on. For the rest of the kids, the camp is a spider web in which self-interested businessmen and experienced con men ensnare their marks. The players’ elders warned of these spiders, but the siren song of Adidas kits and Umbro shoes is too hard to resist. (A visual aside: the spider motif slowly makes its way through Black Diamond visually, culminating in one of the most unsettling, illusionbreaking moments I’ve seen in a documentary. I won’t ruin the surprise, but it’s a rare instance where the verisimilitude of documentary is subverted to its advantage.)

The film is explicit in comparing this modernday industry with the slave trade. It may be an extreme analogy, but it’s hard not to compare the gated training schools where kids are used and disposed of like commodities to the coastal fortresses built by the British. Every NFL or NBA player leaves dozens of high school peers behind, working minimum wage jobs, wishing they hadn’t listened to the sycophants and opportunists who promised glory but disappeared when expectations weren’t met. It’s an upsetting story, but it pales in comparison to the one Black Diamond tells. Because for every Didier Drogba or Michael Essien, there are hundreds of Ivorians and Ghanaians who were tricked by soccer’s swindlers, and who started with nothing but somehow now have less.

Black Diamond: Fool’s Gold is showing on Feb. 13 at 7 p.m. in H-110. For more information, visit concordia.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012



How do you measure a year? With Soliloquies, it’s in words and talent Amanda L. Shore Assistant arts editor


ow do you measure the success of a literary anthology? Is it about profit? The amount of media attention and hype? That may be the case if you’re a publishing house where revenue is the bottom line, but for student-run literary anthology Soliloquies, it’s about being a platform for showcasing the talent of writers at Concordia and the outlying community. The question we have to ask ourselves then is how does a budget-tight literary anthology garner attention while remaining economical? Editors Lizy Mostowski and Paula Haley Wilson are trying to solve this conundrum by taking Soliloquies online. “We never put the anthology into any bookstores, because we only printed a limited number and believe that it is important to have them in the hands of those who care about the publication the most. This is why we put it online: to make it accessible to everyone. Since our goal was never to earn a profit, putting it online has only increased readership and accessibility,” said Mostowski. The 15th edition of Soliloquies has been available online since Nov. 28. Although it has only had 379 views since launching, Mostowski was adamant that since the publication functions as a yearbook type of literary collection, the website is serving the anthology’s purpose “to showcase and preserve talent that currently exists in the community.” On Feb. 10, Soliloquies will launch issue 16.1, a half of the proposed whole that will be Soliloquies 16.2. “This half-issue is really thin, so we’d only have a couple of readers, so we’re going to launch the half-issue online

and we’re going to do a call for submissions on the same day,” said Mostowski. “Then we’re going to have a launch party in early April to launch both of them, and we’re going to have all the readers read […] Then at that point in time we’re going to put out the print edition and shortly after that we’ll put the second half online.” Issue 16.1 will hopefully wet the literary community’s appetite and help snowball readership along the way. Mostowski is planning to market the launch of issue 16.1 through social media and word of mouth, a system that seems to be working quite well considering the number of unsolicited submissions they get from

across Canada and the United States. In the upcoming issue, they will be publishing a short story that is the first chapter of a novel to be released by Pedlar Press this spring. The author is from Toronto, and how she heard about Soliloquies is a mystery, but it nonetheless says a lot about the reach of the anthology outside the halls of Concordia. With the publication’s increased focus on the world wide web, Mostowski and co. are looking to apply funds to the redesign of their website. Although the web page has come a long way in recent years, it could use a general overhaul for easier navigation and visual appeal.


A dangerous idea, a beautiful mind A man struggles in Cold War America in Scientific Americans Amanda L. Shore Assistant arts editor


ynamite was originally intended for the industrious and innocent purpose of construction, but it was turned into a weapon of war. The Chinese were searching for the elixir of immortality when they discovered gunpowder and originally used it in firework displays, but it later became the ignition to the weapon that revolutionized warfare. These inventions of innocuous design became the products of death and destruction. But is the inventor to blame? What is the moral responsibility of creators to the use of their creations? Playwright John Mighton explores this question and many more in his play Scientific Americans, which opened Feb. 5 at the Segal Centre. Produced by SideMart Theatrical Grocery and directed by Andrew Shaver, the show stars Trent Pardy as Jim, a young scientist struggling with the knowledge that his research with the U.S. Department of Defense may be used to create a powerful new weapon. As he wrestles with questions of moral integrity, his relation-

ship with his fiancée Carol (played by Julia Course) begins to go downhill and she forces him to choose between her and the DoD. This darkly comic love story is set in mid1980s America, but asks the audience to consider moral questions still relevant today. “The play centres around questions of relationships and morality that I think are applicable to a lot of topics still around today; the creation of bombs, creation of weapons. Topics that were relevant then, are relevant now and will be relevant years from now,” explained stage manager Sarah-Marie Langlois. Although the play is set against an American background, the themes are universal and are not affected by being portrayed by a Canadian cast. The show isn’t based on any specific events, but centres on the post-Cold War dystopia and mentality that pervaded the U.S. at that time. Langlois has been working for SideMart for a couple years now and has stage managed a fair share of the company’s shows. She noted that SideMart has certain aesthetic qualities of production that many other companies in Montreal do not, which she said is what makes working for them so exciting. “It’s hard to pin down exactly what makes them so unique, it’s kind of like trying to catch a unicorn,” she said. SideMart’s unique theatrical style has garnered them several awards and plenty of notoriety. For an example of their unique approach to

theatre marketing, one has only to view their YouTube video promoting the show. Unlike traditional promotional theatre videos, this video features a behind-the-scenes look at a day in the life of director Andrew Shaver. The video pokes fun at the cast and crew, showing the good-natured, fun-loving side of the company; an inviting spirit that should encourage audiences to feel at home with the cast and crew of SideMart. The video was conceived and directed by George Allister who also did video work for the production of Scientific Americans. Scientific Americans runs from Feb. 5 to Feb. 26. Student tickets are $22. For tickets, visit

Soliloquies currently uses the free host Wordpress, but in the future they hope to apply grant funds to owning their own website. There are many advantages to having a literary anthology online. Principally, it frees up a lot of the budget for publicity. Instead of worrying about selling the anthology in local bookstores and hoping people buy it, a free online edition means that the anthology will possibly reach a larger audience. After all, who doesn’t like free things? Soliloquies is launching issue 16.1 online on Feb. 10. For more information or to submit, visit

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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40 minutes or less

Your guide to this year’s Oscar-nominated short films Chris Hanna Production manager “Eeny, meeny, miny, moe” is as good a strategy as any for predicting the winners in the live action short and animated short categories on your Academy Award ballot. The 10 nominees are rarely screened outside specialized and indie film festivals. Without “big” names behind them and with limited budgets, it’s hard for them to generate any buzz, and it is difficult, if not impossible, to gauge which films will have caught the attention of the voters. Academy rules state that a film is considered “short” if it is under 40 minutes in length. A great short film won’t try to pack as much emotional punch in its limited run-time as its feature-length counterpart. Instead, in 40 minutes or less, it will masterfully tell a great tale that won’t leave the audience feeling shortchanged.

Live action short fiLm In Ireland’s Pentecost, altar boy Damian is relieved from his duties when he accidentally makes the church’s priest fall down a few stairs during mass. The boy gets a chance to redeem himself, undo the punishment his father dealt (no watching or listening to Liverpool’s finals game!) and save face in front of his other Father when he is called upon to replace an altar boy who was ejected from the church after it was discovered that he was never baptised. Time Freak is the shortest and most inventive entry in the category. Stillman has invented a time machine, but he is stuck going back just a few hours in time to perfect interactions he has

doing the same. Later, it’s 2009 and the times have changed. Fifty years after that, the same block is unrecognizable. Canada is well-represented in the animated short film category with two entries, Dimanche/Sunday and Wild Life. Quebec’s Patrick Doyon directs the former, about a boy who imagines a more fun Sunday for himself than the one in which his family forces him to take part. The latter is directed by the Alberta duo Amanda Forbis and Wendy Tilby and tells the story of an Englishman who moves to Canada at the beginning of the 20th century and sends letters back home. The life he writes about is much rosier than the one he is experiencing. stiLLs from the two canadian oscar-nominated animated shorts, Dimanche/SunDay (Left), directed by As much as I would love to root Québécois Patrick doyon, and WilD life (right), directed by aLbertans amanda forbis and wendy tiLby. for the Canadian films on Oscar night, they are up against some stiff competiwith the woman of his dreams and the man who as the husband and new father. tion. Pixar-backed La Luna was not available runs his dry cleaner’s. Stillman’s friend Evan The short that I think will take home the for screening by press time. It tells the story of a concocts a plan to get him out of his rut. hardware come Oscar night is Norway’s Tuba boy’s lunar adventure with his father and grandIn The Shore, a man returns to Northern Atlantic. With just six days to live, a grumpy father. Ireland after 25 years in the United States to man with a disdain for seagulls (he shoots them My pick for the win in the animated short make amends with a childhood friend. Writ- out of the sky and stomps on their eggs) wants category is The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. ten, directed and produced by Oscar-nominated to reconnect with the brother he lost touch with Morris Lessmore. After a natural disaster ravages screenwriter Terry George (Hotel Rwanda, In the decades ago. With the help of a young girl, he his city, Lessmore finds solace in a library where Name of the Father), The Shore is sweet, and sur- rediscovers his youthful energy and zest. books and music give him and his townspeople prisingly touching. culture and hope. Flying Books is incredibly aniIn Raju, Jan and Sarah Fischer are a German animated short fiLm mated and is a true feast for the eyes, mind and couple traveling to Calcutta to adopt an orphan If you needed proof that not all animation is for heart. boy. Before the paperwork even goes through, children, look no further than U.K. nominee A the boy, Raju, goes missing. The most heart- Morning Stroll. At just seven minutes, the gory Cinema du Parc will be showing wrenching short in the bunch, Raju features an film starts with a man in 1959 strolling down the nominated shorts as of Feb. 10. amazing performance by Wotan Wilke Möhring a New York City block and noticing a chicken For details, go to

visual arts

Where stories and histories meet Personal Mythologies features stunning visuals and moving content Rebecca Ugolini Staff writer

Do you remember your childhood imagination? Mine was a vibrant mix of superheroes, nightmares and the stories told by my grandmothers, both Italian immigrants. From their terrifying narratives of leaving behind a war-torn country to their folktales about wolves that would eat disobedient children, their stories were entertaining, imaginative—and scary. Personal Mythologies, a new exhibit on at the MAI gallery until Feb. 18, explores exactly that kind of personal, imaginative headspace. Featuring two Montreal-based artists, Osvaldo Ramirez Castillo, whose work is inspired by his family’s escape from El Salvador’s civil war in the 1980s, and Marigold Santos, whose work reflects her family’s emigration experience from the Philippines to Canada, Personal Mythologies is intellectually and emotionally engrossing. Hanging before the gallery’s windows like haunting dreamcatchers are several installation pieces by Santos featuring braided artificial hair, stapled paper and knotted cords, reflecting her fascination with ‘the woven.’ She says in her artist’s statement: “[The woven] becomes a form of talisman” with the “ability to invite, and repel.” Taking

note of the whimsical and eerie elements included in Santos’ pieces—a braid, a jewelled necklace—viewers construct and weave their own stories, connecting the pieces. “When I was looking into my own culture and paralleling my own experience of history with that of a culture and folklore that existed before me, it was a way to experience this mixing of eastern and western culture,” Santos said of her art. “I came to the idea of an identity based on a combination of different cultures that I could recreate.” War, death, the afterlife and the lives left behind by war are all themes that Personal Mythologies invites readers to contemplate. In the centre of the room, Monument, an installation work by Castillo, incorporates earth, dolls, shoes, moss and plants to create an organic-looking space paying tribute to those left behind by war. Facing Castillo’s

installation, Santos’ HEX (Secret Signals Hands), a series of large, finely-detailed illustrations of hands forming letters spell out: HOW DO WE TALK TO THE DEAD? Across the room, Castillo’s illustration and painting piece My Tyrant, My Protest, My Myth showcases his finely-detailed drawing and ethereal execution of watercolour-like paints, depicting soldiers, priests, men with tattooed faces, muscled and contorted dogs, beasts and war imagery of all kinds. Bathed occasionally in red and always rendered with the same amazingly precise lines— Castillo cites Albrecht Durer as one of his influences—each individual face invites the viewer to look closer and appreciate all the subtlety those fine lines create. One of the great triumphs of Personal Mythologies is the mix of intriguing subject matter and spell-binding execution: both Castillo and Santos trained in print-making,

and it’s a joy to walk through the exhibit admiring their skillful drawings. From Castillo’s postcard-sized portraits of Canadian soldiers, civilians and bizarre beings, to Santos’ series Secret Signals: 1, 2, and 3, featuring otherworldly-looking women in pastel and acid tones and incorporating string and braiding motifs, most of the artworks in Personal Mythologies are so detailed—and the lines so fine—that it’s almost impossible to believe that someone has drawn them so precisely. “I draw in a very organic way that really fits my style, and I don’t tend to plan out my pieces,” says Castillo. “Mylar allows me to draw and paint on both sides of the sheet,” he says of his use of the polyester film medium, which seems to make the paper glow with a pearly sheen, “and it creates a different effect than paper does.” It’s clear that curator Zoë Chan has put together the ideal exhibit: works by Santos and Castillo seem to speak the same visual language, but the viewer is able to see each artist’s style and techniques as distinct and appreciate their uniqueness, creating an exhibit that is both harmonious and dynamic. I don’t usually write this personally about exhibits, but I left the MAI thinking about Personal Mythologies all day long. If you’ve got love or want to think up your own stories, Personal Mythologies is a mustsee exhibition. Personal Mythologies is at the MAI gallery (3680 Jeanne-Mance St., suite 103) until Feb. 18. Admission is free. For more information, go to

music 14

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Write to the editor: profile

The Leopard King is ready to pounce

Montreal’s newest Parisian iMPort is leMy leoPard and he’s bringing deeP house grooves along for the ride.

Lemy Leopard brings Deep House music to Montreal Sophia Loffreda Production assistant


horte Lisika Lemy, also known as Lemy Leopard, has been promoting his new album for weeks, but not in the way you would expect. The Deep House artist has been wearing a leopard-print scarf or leopard tail everywhere he goes to promote S.A.F.A.R.I., which hit digital stores on Jan. 24. “Who are you going to see on the streets wearing that?” he asked with a big smile. Of course, people ask what the tail and scarf are about and it gives Lemy a chance to tell them about his album. The leopard is the 27-year-old Parisianborn musician’s inspiration. With a French accent, killer afro and hip eyeglasses, Lemy is quintessentially cool. But it’s his African roots that first inspired him to create his name. “I was watching a documentary about Mobutu, the dictator from Zaire [present-day Democratic Republic of the Congo]. I don’t like dictators, but I heard the guy say ‘Mobutu, the leopard king!’ and I thought ‘Wow!’” He immersed himself, watching documentaries, to better understand the spotted jungle animal and realized that he and the predatory cat were very similar.

“In my dad’s country, Zaire, the leopard is comme une divinité: a cool animal. A little bit wild, but always smooth. And my music is like that,” he explained. Since the release of his debut album Visualizm in 2009, Lemy has perfected and finetuned his sound. The EP was inspired by his month-long trip to Japan, where he discovered an energy and creativity different from Paris’ relaxed café culture. As a result, the album had more of a hip-hop/lounge vibe than his current tracks. It also got him noticed by the French fashion house Yves Saint Laurent, who used Lemy’s song “Friday Morning” in commercials for its new men’s shoe line. That exposure motivated him to take his craft a step further and he started going to clubs to find music that hadn’t been discovered yet. At The June, a club in Paris, he discovered the power of house and in the days that followed, he created 300 house tracks through trial and error. With a little convincing, he eventually played some for Chris Thomas, owner of Qalomoto Records, but Thomas told him there was just too much. “Too many instruments, too many arrangements,” Lemy explained. “I told him, ‘okay, I’ll call you in four days.’” Four days later, Thomas heard the new tracks and agreed to what would later become Lemy’s second album, From the Jungle. The album debuted worldwide in December 2010 and it hit No. 4 on iTunes two weeks later. In the meantime, Lemy moved to Quebec

“Making a living with music today is kind of hard. But I want to make a living with creative stuff. I think I need to be stimulated. I need to feel it. I need to travel. If I’m not creating something I feel sad, I get sick. I think ideas help me to live.” - Lemy Leopard

where he found even more inspiration in Montreal. The Deep House culture here is almost non-existent compared to Europe or Asia, but familiarizing people with Deep House, eliminating preconceived notions, and hoping they enjoy the sound is the driving force behind S.A.F.A.R.I. Contrary to the Deep House stereotype, Lemy isn’t a party-goer; if he isn’t making music, he’s either at home or working. “People think you can only listen to house music when you’re in a club, but that doesn’t have to be true,” he said. “It’s music you can feel, music you can really dance to. Deep House is all about hope, love, struggle. It has a lot of cheesy messages.” The album is a continuation of Lemy’s jungle-themed concept, but it’s also a yin and

yang. He was upset by the challenges he faced in the industry, and at the same time, happy about being in Montreal. As a result, the album has an aggressive yet loving feel. “Making a living with music today is kind of hard,” said Lemy. “But I want to make a living with creative stuff. I think I need to be stimulated. I need to feel it. I need to travel. If I’m not creating something I feel sad, I get sick. I think ideas help me to live.” Leopard said fans will discover S.A.F.A.R.I.’s message when they listen. His goal is to take them on an African excursion where the final destination is unique, harmonious and dancefloor-worthy. S.A.F.A.R.I. is now available on iTunes and Amazon.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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Soupson and Passovah Productions’ Noah Bick team up for a steamy night of music and soup Anniversary concert showcases members of Arcade Fire and Adam & the Amethysts

noah bick, 21, owner of Passovah Productions has Put together a concert for the coMMunity. Photo by navneet Pall

Allie Mason Music editor


hat could be better than a show with more than 30 performers and where they feed you amazing home-cooked lemon spinach soup from a dépanneur next door? The answer to that is: a pay what you can show with more than 30 performers where they feed you amazing home-cooked lemon spinach soup from a dépanneur next door! He might only be 21 years old, but Noah Bick has been organizing and promoting events and music around Montreal long enough to secure a solid lineup of musicians to help him ring in his production company’s fourth birthday. “I tried to book a fourth year anniversary show to kind of best represent where Passovah’s at, and I felt like this vibe—getting 12 different acts who represent different musical groups around the community—kind of made

the most sense.” “[Il Motore] is a good space to have it. It’s a relatively new venue, it needs love, it’s in a part of town that people are starting to move to, and then there’s the [Jean-Talon] Marché,” Bick continued. And then there’s Marché Soupson. “It’s kind of like a dépanneur, but it’s more than a dépanneur,” explained Bick. “[The owner] makes fresh soup every day and she cures her own meat. So we’re getting free soup from them that we’re giving out.” “We’re really trying to create a strong community vibe. And it’s pay-what-you-can in order not to get anyone turned away at the door,” he said. “And all the bands are just friends that I’ve made over the years doing these bookings so it’s kind of just a big hangout, party, celebration thing.” But the only way to get 12 acts on a singlenight bill was to give them each 15-minute sets. So that’s what Bick did. Partiers will be treated to performances by Arcade Fire’s DJ Jeremy Gara, Charlotte

Cornfield, Freelove Fenner, Mike O’Brien, Jordan Robson Cramer of Ancient Kids and Sunset Rubdown, Alden Penner from Hidden Words, ex-Clues and ex-Unicorns, Cotton Mouth’s Martin Horn, Caroline Keating, Lisa Gamble aka Gambletron, and Adam Waito of Adam & the Amethysts. “It’s kind of hard not to be involved in Passovah if you’re an emerging local band,” said Waito, who played the first-ever Passovah show with his then band Telefauna. “You will have crossed paths with Passovah for sure because they’re quite prolific.” “I think what he offers to [POP Montreal and Blue Skies Turn Black] and the community at large is a fresh exuberance for new and emerging bands. It’s not only refreshing for concert-goers, but also for other promoters who’ve been at it for longer and maybe need that young blood in the mix to keep the excitement alive,” Waito added. The bromance is alive and well in Bick, too. He’s as excited, or more, about Waito being on the scene in Montreal.

“I didn’t really appreciate Taylor Swift, and now I kind of like [Taylor Swifter]’s versions of her songs more than I like Taylor Swift songs.” - Noah Bick

“I hear that Adam Waito and Rebecca [Lessard] from Adam and the Amethysts might be doing a Bran Van 3000 cover,” said Bick, laughing. “But that may or may not be happening.” The night’s proverbial ninja goes by the name of Taylor Swifter, a local Taylor Swift cover band. “I didn’t really appreciate Taylor Swift,” said Bick, “and now I kind of like their versions of her songs more than I like Taylor Swift songs. It’s going to be exciting.” “They told me not to talk about it too much,” he admitted. “It’s really, really good. You’ll mark my words in a couple months. It’s incredible.” Passovah’s 4th anniversary goes down Friday, Feb. 10 at Il Motore (179 Jean-Talon West) at 9 p.m., but you’ll want to go early to make sure you get free soup—it’s only being served to the first 75 people. Even if you don’t make it in time for soup, the celebration is free or pay-what-you-can. It’s a win-win.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012





sunday night, one grouP of fans was jubilant. the other felt the bitter Pit of

disaPPointMent in their stoMachs.

but both sides need soMething to listen to after the gaMe. side a is for the winners. go out and celebrate. just because you watched the gaMe 2,000 Miles froM indianaPolis doesn’t Mean you weren’t as Much a Part of the victory as the Players on the field. let the Music carry you through the night. Professors will understand that you Missed the Monday Morning exaM. side b is for the losers. all of a sudden wearing the saMe “lucky” underwear for two weeks doesn’t seeM like such a good idea, does it? you’ll Probably just want to sPend the week sitting in the dark, listening to these Melancholic tunes, eating leftover guacaMole and throwing darts at a Picture of the oPPosing teaM’s quarterback.

Super Bowl: #Winning vs. #FAIL Compiled by Julian Mei Sports editor

side a: #winning

side b: #fail

1. “We Are The Champions” - Queen - News of the World 2. “Alive” - Kid Cudi - Man on the Moon: The End of Day 3. “Amazing” - Kanye West ft. Young Jeezy 808s & Heartbreak 4. “Song 2” - Blur - Blur 5. “Champagne Showers” - LMFAO - Sorry For Party Rocking 6. “All I Do Is Win” - DJ Khaled ft. Ludacris Victory 7. “Have A Party” - Mobb Deep feat. 50 Cent & Nate Dogg - Single 8. “Rock ‘N’ Roll Part 2 (The ‘Hey’ Song)” Gary Glitter - Single 9. “Jump Around” - House of Pain - House of Pain 10. “Island In The Sun” - Weezer - The Green Album

11. “Loser” - Beck - Mellow Gold 12. “Crazy Train” - Ozzy Osbourne Blizzard of Ozz 13. “The Kick” - XV - Single 14. “Stuck In a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of” - U2 - All That You Can’t Leave Behind 15. “Everyday Is Exactly The Same” Nine Inch Nails - With Teeth 16. “The Times They Are a-Changin’” Bob Dylan - The Times They Are aChangin’ 17. “The Show Goes On” - Lupe Fiasco - Lasers 18. “Heartbreaker” - MSTRKRFT - Fist Of God 19. “Talk” - Coldplay - X&Y 20. “Say It Ain’t So” - Weezer - Weezer

Quick spins

Retro review

Mark Lanegan Band - Blues Funeral (4AD; 2012)

Hit the Lights - Invicta (Razor&Tie; 2012)

Lana Del Rey - Born to Die (Polydor/ Interscope; 2012)

Nick Drake - Pink Moon (Island Records; 1972)

With his years as Screaming Trees’ leader and his heroin addiction far behind him, Mark Lanegan has favoured collaborative albums with Isobel Campbell, formerly of Scottish indie pop group Belle and Sebastian. Now, armed with producer Alain Johannes (Queens of the Stone Age, Them Crooked Vultures), Blues Funeral is Lanegan’s first studio album since 2004’s Bubblegum. Saturated with dark imagery and regret, Lanegan’s mournful, gruff vocals (think Black Keys with a strep throat) overwhelm this bluesyrock funeral. The ordeal made me long for contrasting vocals with Campbell on his previous collaborative work. Despite some great melodic moments on songs like “Phantasmagoria Blues” and “Bleeding Muddy Water,” Blues Funeral is nothing more than a glimpse into the mind of a man with too many scars. With a run-time of a little under an hour, I don’t think I could handle more than a short memorial gravesite visit.

Ohio-based band Hit The Lights show a different side of themselves on their newest and third full-length studio album, Invicta. While sticking to their pop-punk roots, the band’s style has changed; their lyrics have matured beyond “chasing the girl.” After the first listen, the songs sound somewhat similar, but after playing the album through a few times they begin to grow on you. Songs “Gravity,” “Earthquake,” and “Carry the Weight,” taken from the band’s Invicta EP, are the best on the album. The contradictorily-named, slowerpaced track, “Faster Now,” though still catchy, seems out of place on an album with mostly upbeat melodies. The final song, “Oh My God,” is drastically different from anything the band has released and introduces a darker instrumental side; a good way to end the album. Invicta has 11 tunes that are great singa-long anthems, with super catchy choruses that should satisfy the tastes of any pop rocker.

Lana Del Rey became an Internet sensation in August when she released the artsy music video for her first single “Video Games.” The hype has skyrocketed since the release of her second single “Born to Die,” and has only continued, building up to her first full-length LP by the same name. Her album begins with the four best songs, which were coincidentally all singles, or leaked on YouTube. Her sultry and glamorous voice is ceaseless, and her simplistic lyrics are overshadowed when mixed with high-quality production. She sings mostly about rich and James Dean-esque men, and American pride. Although Lana Del Rey has been talked about so much that there isn’t much left to say, I think she deserves most of the popularity. Her pop songs are fresh, and stand out among artists like Katy Perry and Rihanna. Born to Die isn’t as jaw-dropping incredible as expected, but it is a good pop album nonetheless.

By the time Pink Moon was released in 1972, Nick Drake had sunk into the depression from which he’d never emerge, aggravated by the disconnect between his peers’ praise and his lack of success. Hopelessness had joined sorrow. It’s hard to imagine an artist less deserving of this doubt. Years after his 1974 suicide, his music would finally receive the praise it deserved. The ethereal quality of Drake’s voice lends a playfulness to the melancholic title track; you can’t help but grin hearing him bounce along with “pink, pink, pink, pink.” “Road” and “Things Behind the Sun” show off his bizarre tunings: each sounds familiar but remains shrouded by hidden fretboard formulas. And “Which Will” remains, in my mind, the benchmark all unrequited love should be measured against. Pink Moon is best summed up as an album of emotional contradictions: it makes you want to both smile and cry in one line and, by the time the needle lifts, both exhausts and rejuvenates you.

Trial track: “Phantasmagoria Blues”

Trial track: “Earthquake”

Trial track: “Summertime Sadness”

Trial track: “Pink Moon”



- Paul Traunero

- Natasha Taggart


- Leah Batstone

- Brandon Judd

Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian

Tuesday, February 7, 2012



Surf’s up for Concordia professor

Andrew Guilbert Staff writer

>>> Sting’S policing the world again

Sting will be featuring a very special guest on his latest tour: Amnesty International. The former Police frontman, a long-time supporter of AI, has invited the charity organization to set up booths at the tour’s venues to raise awareness about oil pollution and human rights abuse in the Niger Delta. The booths will be manned by volunteers offering literature on Amnesty International’s “Shell: Own up, Pay up, Clean up” petition calling for the oil giant to help establish a clean-up fund for the Niger Delta as well as compensating families and communities who have been affected. The Back to Bass tour will be going through Europe and South Africa, so if you’re inclined to cross the Atlantic, you can check the tour dates at

>>> i gueSS he doeSn’t play well with otherS

In an interview with Billboard magazine, Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon admitted that his band was asked to play a gig at the Grammys, but that they refused due to unacceptable terms. “We wanted to play our music, but we were told that we couldn’t play. We had to do a collaboration with someone else,” said Vernon. “We just felt like it was such a large stage. We’re getting nominated for this record that we made, me and Brian and a bunch of our fucking friends, and we were given accolades for it. And all of a sudden we were being asked to play music that had nothing to do with that. We kind of said ‘fuck you’ a little bit and they sort of acted like they wanted us to play, but I don’t think they wanted us to play.” Vernon clarified that it wasn’t the artists they wanted Bon Iver to play with that the band found objectionable, but rather it was the principle of the thing that mattered most.

>>> i’d watch that

The Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl will be teaming up with comedian Dana Gould on a new sitcom for FX, according to an article from Gould approached Grohl, who will be an executive producer for the show, because he was a fan of his music. The comedy is centered on a rock band on the verge of both breaking out and breaking up and decides to enter group therapy to sort things out.


eminem (allegedly) StealS from the homeleSS!

Eminem has been hit with a lawsuit for $9 million after supposedly stealing the idea for a Chrysler Super Bowl commercial from a homeless man. The plaintiff, Stephen Lee Pieck, claims that he was having dinner with Christina Aguilera and her ex when the singer called Eminem and handed Pieck the phone, at which point he gave the rapper the idea for the “Born of Fire” commercial. “I want the court to reward me a judgment in the amount of $9 million,” reads Pieck’s lawsuit. “I designed every aspect of the commercial and the commercial was stolen from me. In addition, I did not receive compensation in monetary terms for the work I did.” If you’re interested in reading the lawsuit (and believe me, you are), you can check it out at

Leah Batstone Staff writer


alk about music with Craig Morrison and it’s impossible to ignore the passion and joy that overcomes him, especially when he talks about the annual Roots of Rock and Roll concert series, which he performs in and organizes annually. “Every year, we manage to get a kind of ecstasy or thrill,” said Morrison, a music professor at Concordia. “We lift that place and that’s what people come for. They see all the work we’ve put into it, they see the way we interact, and the music itself. It’s community building.” This year, the theme is California Dreamin’ (referring to the song by The Mamas & the Papas): Music From the Golden State. However, don’t expect to hear The Red Hot Chili Peppers or Snoop Dogg. The repertoire consists of classic artists like The Doors, The Byrds, The Beach Boys, and Creedence Clearwater Revival. “When selecting the songs and their order I say, how can I present the story of that? How am I going to be able to show people what California music is and how it developed?” said Morrison. For him, the concert is about providing context to the culture and educating listeners on music evolution in a fun atmosphere. “Most of the audience comes for nostalgia, but they know when they get here it isn’t strictly a nostalgic show. They’re going to hear a lot of songs they know and some they don’t. It’s part of the mandate,” he explained. The annual Roots of Rock and Roll concert began with a request for Morrison to participate in a faculty concert series in 1997. He organized the show to reflect the musical styles of the course he was teaching and gave it the same name. His band, The Momentz, played the show at Oscar Peterson Concert Hall and had a great turnout, which helped the concert

continue years later despite the end of the faculty concert series. “We called [the first concert] ‘Old, New, Borrowed, Blue’ because of the borrowed tunes and bluegrass music. It seemed like a good way to advertise it,” said Morrison. His band was the main act, but opening acts were added in the third year because Morrison thought it was a great opportunity to showcase other roots-oriented musicians. To keep things fresh, Morrison selects a unique theme for each year, narrowing down the repertoire of the show to a specific era, genre or person. He then picks the song that best represents the conu Professor craig Morrison helPs you escaPe those winter blues theme as part of the with live PerforMances of songs froM california’s golden coast. concert’s title, giving the audience an idea of what to expect when they attend the accomplishment when it’s over,” she said. The concert is a learning experience for show. The concert’s energy builds with each song the audience, but the band members learn a and the musicians on stage increase with it. lot too. “[I love] getting opened up to music I With 11 people performing at its climax, find- didn’t know about or know that I liked,” said ing time to arrange practice meetings should Lebeau-Petersen. “I will be the least familiar be a challenge, but Morrison’s band only re- with the repertoire for this show, so there’s a lot to learn.” hearses three times beforehand. “I wouldn’t say it is easy,” said Danielle Lebeau-Petersen, who has been participating in California Dreamin’: Music From the Golden Morrison’s concert for three years. Despite her State takes place on Feb. 10 and 11 at 8 p.m. experience—Lebeau-Petersen has played guitar at Concordia’s Oscar Peterson Concert Hall. for 12 years and has directed a blues choir— Tickets can be purchased at the Oscar Petershe sometimes wonders how everything will son administration office or at the door. They be ready for the performance. “I feel a sense of are $13 for Concordia students with ID.

Photo by Linda Rutenberg

Roots of Rock and Roll celebrates 15th year, showcases music from the Sunshine State

sports 18

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Write to the editor: hockey

Big win and tough loss for Concordia men

Stingers upset McGill but lose against Ottawa Alex Giubelli Assistant sports editor

Just like the women’s team experienced a week before, the men’s hockey team was unable to stop the Ottawa Gee-Gees as they played their second game in a row on Saturday night. The night before, however, the men played what may have been their best game of the season, knocking off the CIS’ top ranked McGill 4-2. Concordia has defeated McGill in two of the teams’ three meetings this season. This loss to Ottawa greatly dampened Concordia’s chances of making it into the CIS top 10, a place the team would love to find itself in as the regular season winds down. “The guys played as hard as they could today with what they had left, but we just didn’t have enough energy to compete,” said head coach Kevin Figsby of the Ottawa game. “Ottawa was coming in with a must-win situation. If they lose, they are out of the playoffs. It was a tough game for us today, but you can’t do anything about it, that’s how the schedule dictates

itself.” With two games to go in the regular season, the Stingers will be without the help of goaltender Peter Karvouniaris, who is out indefinitely with a concussion he suffered in the second period as Ottawa forward Stephen Blunden ran him into the net. Figsby believes the play was a critical turning point of the game. “We were still in a 1-1 hockey game when they ran our goaltender,” said Figsby. “We didn’t know when he got hit that it was a concussion, so he stayed in and they took two shots that went in. That turned the game around.” The first period had Ottawa written all over it as the Stingers had trouble getting out of their own zone. The Gee-Gees had one opportunity after another as the defence was scrambling, but everything was stopped by Karvouniaris keeping the game 0-0. Three minutes into the second period, Concordia forward François Lanctôt-Marcotte opened the scoring, making it 1-0 for the Stingers. “It’s a lucky goal I guess,” he said of the goal scored on the rebound of Charles-Antoine Messier. After Concordia’s goal, it was all Gee-Gees once again. The Stingers had a chance to take a 2-0 lead as Ottawa forward Stephen Blunden was called for goalie interference. But the

Peter Karvouniaris maKes a sPrawling save in a 5-3 loss to the ottawa gee-gees. Photo by navneet Pall

Stingers were sloppy on the power play, and gave up on a two-on-one which resulted in the puck finding its way past Karvouniaris and to the back of net. A minute later, Ottawa added another marker as Stephen Blunden scored with a wrist shot, making it 2-1. Ottawa made the game 3-1 before the intermission as Luc Olivier Blain

was able to beat a woozy Karvouniaris. The third period started with Nicholas Champion taking the place of Karvouniaris in the net after he suffered his concussion. To welcome Champion to the game, Ottawa scored just 40 seconds into the period. The teams exchanged goals for the rest of the period en route to Ottawa’s 5-3 victory.

Despite the win against McGill, captain Eric Bégin wasn’t letting his team off the hook for Saturday’s game. “I don’t buy into that fatigue factor, that’s not an excuse,” he said. “We play 28 games in a season, not 82 like the pros. It’s not an excuse.” Concordia is up against McGill this Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at Ed Meagher Arena.


Stingers get back on track with weekend sweep Concordia wins two in a row and moves to 10-1 Julian Mei Sports editor


fter watching an archrival end their perfect season last week, the Concordia Stingers were anxious to get back on the court this weekend against Laval and UQAM and atone for the loss to McGill. Concordia turned in two impressive performances, beating Laval 80-59 on Friday at home, and then picking up a 73-62 win at UQAM. The slow starts and periods of lackadaisical play that plagued the Stingers in recent weeks were addressed this week during practice, and the changes were noticed come game time. “I think it was our attitude

on the team [that made the difference],” said coach John Dore. “The guys had a wake-up call. We had better practices, we were more focused and intense, and maybe had a bit better understanding of what we need to do.” While he was happy with his team’s effort, Dore was never too concerned with the overall motivation level of his team. “The guys should get excited about playing the games, that’s why we work so hard in practice,” he said. “They’re here because they want to be here, so it shouldn’t be hard to get motivated.” On Friday night, it was guard Kyle Desmarais leading the way for the Stingers with 18 points and seven assists. Despite falling behind by nine points early in the game, Concordia battled back to take a lead into the second quarter and would not trail again in the game. Concordia faced a quick turnaround from the Laval game and was on the court against UQAM on Saturday. The Stingers jumped out to an early 17-4 lead, and though

they let UQAM back into the game, Concordia dominated play for the most part and was never seriously threatened late in the game. Rookie guard Jerome Blake led the Stingers in scoring with 16 points in just 19 minutes coming off the bench. With five games remaining in the season, Concordia has a six-point lead over second place McGill. Thus far the Stingers have been right on par with coach Dore’s preseason expectations. “I thought we had a chance to be in first place and I sort of expected to be in first place,” said Dore. “I don’t know if I expected [to be in first by six points]. Our goal right now is to create some distance from the pack.” Dore has never been one to rest players down the stretch, even if playoff seeding has been determined, but given some tough late season scheduling it is not something that has been ruled out. Concordia’s next game is this Friday at 8 p.m. against Bishop’s at Loyola.

John Dore KeePs his Players focuseD in a win. Photo by navneet Pall

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Tuesday, February 7, 2012


opinions 20

Tuesday, February 7. 2012

Write to the editor: editorial

Sexual assault centre at ConU was needed yesterday There’s no doubt that a centre is necessary; what is the university waiting for?


oordinators of a campaign to get a sexual assault crisis centre at Concordia continue to say that the university is lagging in establishing such a place. This of course begs the questions: Why hasn’t the university already agreed to the demands of the coordinators? Why is it taking so long for a crisis centre to appear on campus? Is there not already enough glaring proof to demonstrate the necessity of having this service available to all Concordia students? The campaign to get a sexual assault crisis centre on campus, spearheaded by the 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy, kicked off last spring. Organizers are not only looking

at establishing a centre, but also at getting the university to clarify its vague clauses regarding sexual assault in its Code of rights and responsibilities. Similar crisis centres already exist at many other Canadian universities, including McGill. The centre often cited as a strong example by campaign coordinators is located at the University of Alberta. The centre at that campus, which has a population of roughly 29,000 students, indicated it receives about 200 cases of reported sexual assault every year. By contrast, Concordia’s Office of rights and responsibilities, operating on a campus of about 45,000 students, reported receiving 12 reported cases of sexual assault in 2009-10, with only one leading to a formal complaint. In 2010-11, the Office received nine cases. Officials with the 2110 Centre are right in pointing out that it is highly unlikely that only an average of 10 cases of sexual assault take place at Concordia each year. The number is probably much higher, but remains low on paper due to the fact that victims

could very well find it difficult to report their case to people who are not specifically trained in dealing with sexual assault cases, and who are not available at all hours. The Concordia Student Union has already sent a clear message of support to the quest for a crisis centre. Last October, its council unanimously approved a motion put forward by councillor Irmak Bahar endorsing the creation of a sexual assault crisis centre funded by the Concordia administration, as well as mandatory sensitivity training programs for security personnel. The CSU executive was mandated to write a letter of support to the administration, who indicated at the time that the issue would be looked into. Almost four months later, it seems the issue wasn’t looked at that closely. Supporters for a crisis centre, which also include many students, are still pushing just as hard for their project to finally come to fruition. A petition has been created to move the initiative along, and has so far received over 200 signatures.

The need for a sexual assault crisis centre is impossible to ignore. So get to it, Concordia. Should the university ever seriously consider a sexual assault centre to take shape on campus, it should also take a serious look at its vague policies on sexual assault. Modifying them to make them as clear and efficient as possible would also send the message that Concordia takes sexual assault very seriously, and is indeed interested in making both campuses as safe as possible for students. A 2004 Statistics Canada survey found approximately 512,200 Canadians aged 15 and older had been the victims of a sexual assault in the 12 months preceding the survey. That is equivalent to 1,977 incidents of sexual assault per 100,000 people aged 15 and older. According to the 2110 Centre, more than 80 per cent of sexual assault survivors are women. These numbers are screaming for a sexual assault crisis centre at Concordia. It’s time to act now before more Concordia victims are added to these alarming statistics.

ing to enter the university and those waiting to enter the workforce. Furthermore, labour contracts and utility bills also pressure the government to resolve the issue quickly. At the end of previous strikes, rather than penalizing students, classes were extended and evaluations renegotiated. Provost David Graham may have said that “all instructional activities, including classes, tutorials, labs and studio sessions, will be held as scheduled.” However, if Concordia students make the democratic decision to go on strike, that will certainly not be the case. A strike means empty classrooms; it means temporarily putting aside our studies because we believe that higher education is a societal good and a human right. During a strike, we mobilize and organize instead of studying and a mobilized student body is a force to reckon with! Our movement has strong support from people and places that matter. More than 13,000 students have already voted to go on strike and another 52,000 will vote in the upcoming weeks.

Many faculty members and labour unions support us. All this to say, while we can’t completely rule out negative outcomes, we certainly don’t have to, and shouldn’t, wait for an official message from administration granting us academic amnesty to take action. If you want to learn about strikes, come by the Hall mezzanine during the week, come to the Loyola Luncheon on Wednesdays, or to the GSA house (2030 Mackay) Fridays after 5. Like “Concordia Students for Accessible Education” on Facebook, and send your concerns and questions to Inform yourselves, talk to your friends and get involved!

I was reading your article on comic Sugar Sammy and was surprised to learn that Montreal’s language conflict was “[...] largely instigated by the adoption of Bill 101 in the 70s,” when I was under the impression that the language conflict was largely instigated by the British invasion and the violent imposition of English rule in the 1760s. I guess I was wrong. Also, I was apparently mistaken in believing that in the Anglo-American legislative system a bill becomes law when passed and is thereafter referred to as an Act. I guess I was wrong there, too. Unless anglophones call it Bill 101 in a vain attempt to delude themselves into thinking that Quebec law doesn’t apply to them because they are too superior, but that of course can’t be the case as you make it clear that this law is responsible for any linguistic trouble in Montreal. Thanks for enlightening me you guys!


RE: ‘Editorial: If only universities were on students’ side,’ volume 29, issue 19 It would be nice if our “universities were on students’ side,” as last week’s editorial put it, but let’s face it, university administrators aren’t on our side (their six-figure salaries are quite reflective of this). When we plan a student strike, we are not negotiating for an academic amnesty because it isn’t something we’re asking for, it’s something we take. We minimize risk by ensuring that the strikes are absolute, that all classrooms are empty. That there will be strength in numbers. Collectively taking risks protects individuals because penalizing everyone is unthinkable. There have been eight province-wide “general” strikes in Quebec. Seven were successful and students have never lost a semester. During strikes with tens of thousands of participants, cancelling a semester would result in backlogs of those wait-

Irmak Bahar Member of Mob Squad

RE: ‘Pour some Sugar on me,’ volume 29, issue 16

Max Guérin Arts student, McGill University

What did you think of this paper? Send us your letters to the editor to before Friday at 4 p.m. The Concordian reserves the right to edit your letters for length, clarity, taste and style. Letters are limited to 400 words.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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The technology war has reached our bookstore, and Google won Time to put an end to e-reader discrimination and open up to Kindle users Myles Dolphin Opinions editor


o you remember when companies stuck to what they did best? Google was a search engine, Amazon sold books and Apple sold computers. Those days are over. All three companies have beefed up to offer a wide variety of services, and as a result, they encroach on each other’s territory every so often in an attempt to expand their customer base. Google, Apple and Amazon now offer music and storage services, as well as tablets. This level of competition is advantageous to us, the consumers, because it drives prices down and offers a wider variety of choices. This semester, Concordia’s bookstore started offering a decent range of e-books (textbooks, novels, etc.) through a partnership with Google and 22 other universities in Canada and the United States. “We are proud to sell Google eBooks because they offer students ultimate flexibility,” the website boasts. “They can be read on virtually any device, at any time.” The key word is “virtually.” As a proud owner of an Amazon Kindle e-reader, which I bought for the sole purpose of reading, I was excited knowing that thousands of books, possibly some that I would need for class, would be made available for me. Then I read this: “Google eBooks will work on the following devices: Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Computers, Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo Reader.” It adds: “Google eBooks are not currently compatible with Amazon

Graphic by Sean Kershaw

Kindle devices.” After repeated attempts to get an explanation from the bookstore as to why it was exercising what seemed like e-reader discrimination, I got a reply from Ken Bissonnette, the operations and text manager at the bookstore. He started out by saying that the bookstore had sold roughly 450 copies of e-books that were required for courses in January, but “there are no plans to include the Kindle.” After demanding more precise explanations, he finally said: “At this time I don’t see Google using Kindle.” This statement proves two things: firstly, that a partnership with Google clearly entails

preference to Android-based tablet users, which is understandable, and secondly, that the bookstore itself is clearly unaware of student trends, and the advantages of making their e-books available to Kindle users. While Apple clearly has a stranglehold on the tablet market share, the Kindle has the same kind of monopoly for e-readers. “During the last nine weeks of 2011, Kindle unit sales, including the Fire tablet, increased 177 per cent compared to the same period in 2010,” according to an official Amazon statement last month. Kindle device sales in 2011 were nearly tri-

ple the 2010 total; this is due to its low starting prices and to Amazon’s “focus on an ecosystem and content for users, an approach closer to what Apple uses for the iPad, rather than focusing on hardware specs.,” according to Flurry Analytics. The point is, the Kindle is prevalent among the student population and universities should opt to include the Kindle if they want to achieve substantial e-book sales. No one I know owns a Sony or Kobo eReader, and I certainly don’t know any students who want to strain their eyes by reading an 80-page document on an iPod or iPhone, let alone an iPad, which uses a reflective screen that simply won’t let you read in the sun. In 2009, Princeton University carried out a pilot program (three members of faculty and 51 students) using e-readers in a classroom setting. One of their goals was to reduce the amount of printing and photocopying. “Most students surveyed in the Princeton pilot (94 per cent) said they did use less paper, reducing by as much as 85 per cent the printing they normally would have done in the pilot course,” according to the report. Can you imagine if the Concordia bookstore sold the world’s most popular e-reader (which is already attractively priced) or at the very least made its e-books available to Kindle users? Not only would their e-book sales skyrocket, but the university would save an enormous amount of paper, which would certainly help Concordia’s efforts to become as sustainable as possible, and to be a model for other schools to follow. More e-book sales would likely lead to more coursepacks and textbooks becoming available to the student body and subsequently, students wouldn’t be as turned off by the outlook of reading 80 electronic pages. So, will the bookstore bow down to Google, as so many others have done, or will it figure out a way to let us, the Kindle users, in on the fun?


Why science needs cheerleaders A bit of skepticism never hurt anyone — in fact, it prevents harm Gem Newman The Manitoban WINNIPEG (CUP) — I graduated from the University of Manitoba’s computer science department in 2007. Despite what my degree says, I’m not a scientist. I think of myself more as a “science cheerleader.” Science needs cheerleaders, because science is so important. We humans tend to pay much more attention to those things that confirm our preconceived notions than to those details that don’t fit our theories. We have a marked tendency to remember the hits and forget the misses — presumably why Sylvia Browne remains so popular. We’re hardly unbiased observers of our surroundings. The way that we see the world is coloured by many things, our egos foremost amongst them. A study of Australian workers conducted in 1987 found that only one per

cent of the workers rated their workplace performance as below average. Perhaps when it comes to evaluating our own skill at Monopoly we can be forgiven if we see ourselves through rose-coloured glasses; when our callous assumption that we outperform our contemporaries affects the quality of our work, concern becomes warranted. But what about when it really counts? If your child is sick, do you want your doctor to tell you, “Well, this medicine seems to work pretty well most of the time, in my experience.” Perhaps you would be more comfortable if she said, “Well, this medicine has been shown to work in multiple large, randomized, controlled trials.” Unfortunately, many people find the first statement just as reassuring as the second. We tend to find personal experiences and anecdotes convincing, despite how biased and unreliable personal experiences can be. But there are many cases where we simply cannot afford to let our petty biases influence the way we see the world. And that’s where science comes in. Science is the quest to understand ourselves, our universe and our place in it. At its root, science is merely a systematic search for

Science is skeptical by nature. Scientific skepticism is a systematic process of doubt. Put simply: question everything.

knowledge. As science has progressed, scientists have identified problems and biases in the way humans observe the universe around us, which has led scientific inquiry to become a self-correcting process. In medicine, for example, experiments are blinded, randomized and controlled in an attempt to prevent the biases of the examiner from affecting the result, whether unwitting or deliberate. Replication by independent researchers is one of the cornerstones of science, working to weed out simple mistakes or outright fraud. Science is skeptical by nature. Scientific skepticism is a systematic process of doubt. Put simply: question everything. Don’t just take claims at face value. Skepticism tells us

that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and that we should proportion our belief in a proposition according to the evidence provided for it. While skeptics are frequently dismissed as arrogant and closedminded, scientific skepticism is, at its core, an intellectually humble exercise. The success of the scientific endeavour requires us to admit our imperfections. If science is seen as everchanging, it is only because scientists are willing to admit to their errors and to learn from them. As the scientist and educator Carl Sagan said, “It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”


Tuesday, February 7. 2012



In Rhodes we should not trust Alex MacDonald The Argosy SACKVILLE, N.B. (CUP) — The Rhodes Trust recently announced that yet another Mount Allison University student has been awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship. These scholarships were created in 1902 from the estate of British imperialist Cecil Rhodes. According to the Rhodes Trust website, Rhodes’ vision in founding the scholarship was to develop outstanding leaders who would be motivated to fight “the world’s fight,” to “esteem the performance of public duties as their highest aim” and to promote international understanding and peace. These aims are well and fine, but Rhodes’ idea of international understanding and peace was contingent on the rule of the British Empire, which Rhodes envisioned ruling the African continent “from Cape to Cairo.” The Rhodes Trust uses words to distract applicants from reading deeper into what the scholarship is about; however, I have to wonder about those who accept the financial support of a man who made his money in the worst of ways. Rhodes made his millions in the diamond mines of southern Africa founding De Beers, a diamond company that has been a target of numerous legal accusations of anti-trust. Rhodes was also prominently involved in the Jameson Raid, an event that led to the outbreak of the Second Boer War. This war pitted Great Britain against the Netherlands for imperial control

over southern Africa and resulted in collateral deaths of tens of thousands of native Africans. Ninety-four Oxford University fellows deplored the decision to allow Rhodes on campus to accept an honorary degree. The opposition stemmed primarily from Rhodes’ involvement in the Jameson Raid and his circumvention of law in southern Africa. After the raid, Rhodes’ brother was tried and convicted of murder. His execution was commuted to a 15-year sentence before Rhodes spent £30 million (approximately £2.7 billion in 2012) in order to have him released. Rhodes was obsessed with personal gain and expanding the wealth of De Beers. Even at the outset of the Second Boer War, Rhodes attempted to persuade military officials to protect his mining interests, rather than Britain’s military interests. Accounts of Rhodes during the time of war expose his fleeting concern for the lives of others and shed light on his perception of others who were not as “civilized” as the British. Are the achievements of Rhodes scholars overshadowed by the atrocities Rhodes committed during his lifetime? Are the students receiving scholarships concerned that the $100,000 they receive from the Rhodes Trust comes from the imperial exploitation and warmongering Rhodes took part in? I know I would be concerned. If I claimed to care about corporate social responsibility, I would not be able to bring myself to accept the money. Being nothing more that a “C” student, however, I don’t have to create an excuse to deal with the ethical dilemma of being awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. What excuse does the current class of Rhodes scholars have?

Image courtesy of Library and Archives Canada via Flickr Creative Commons

The ethical dilemma of a scholarship


First gay fraternity in Canada a model to follow

Concordia’s gay males need a fraternity too Paula Rivas Life editor


y gay friend has often complained about the lack of venues for young gay men to develop friendships beyond the politically-driven organizations. I realized that gay men at Concordia need a place where they can create bonds—a place where they can feel free to have fun and participate in charities. A fraternity would offer all these opportunities, yet one for gay males does not exist at Concordia. Screw tradition, times are changing and so should our social structures. This is where Delta Lambda Phi (DLP), an American fraternity, comes in. Since its creation in 1986, DLP has “offered gay, bisexual, and progressive men across the nation the opportunity to grow in the true spirit of brotherhood -- one that embraces diversity and respects the value of all,” according to their website. Canada’s first colony (“chapter-in-training”) of DLP is located at McGill, and was launched last week.

“I wouldn’t say that we’re very different from the average fraternity. Our goals are social, service, and recreational activities and we work to fulfill those goals,” said Brian Keast, a member of DLP and also a member of Queer McGill. Interestingly enough, DLP has been getting mixed reactions from the Greek system. Marissa Caucci, a member of the InterFraternity Council at Concordia (the organization that oversees all the fraternities and sororities), said that she is supportive of DLP joining the system. “A gay fraternity would have the same underlying values and activities as other organizations and I feel as though they would enrich our community and add more diversity and awareness on issues that they [DLP] themselves value,” said Caucci. In contrast, Ash Andre Fidelia, a member of the Concordia fraternity Tau Kappa Epsilon, said that he does not support DLP at all. “In my fraternity and in most [fraternities] we don’t discriminate and we accept anyone who is willing to join. Making a gay fraternity is just not right in my opinion because it’s just going to be a bunch of guys sleeping with each other, ” he said. Are these assumptions the only argument against the creation of a gay fraternity at Concordia? It is proven that even

“I would never join a normal fraternity, I would feel like I was pretending to be someone I am not and I would not feel comfortable always walking on eggshells.” - Jeremi Calderon

though straight fraternities may claim that they don’t discriminate, they are simply uninviting to gay men. According to Shane Windmeyer, the co-editor of the book Out on Fraternity Row, about ten per cent of men in traditional U.S fraternities are gay, and almost all of them remain in the closet out of fear of rejection from their fellow frat brothers. “I would never join a normal fraternity, I would feel like I was pretending to be someone I am not and I would not feel comfortable always walking on eggshells,” said Concordia accounting student Jeremi Calderon. “A gay fraternity sounds like a great idea,” he added. Another ridiculous argument against the idea of a gay fraternity is the stereotypical and outright ignorant belief that it would

lead to sexual relationships between members and would therefore defeat the purpose of having a fraternity. This is why I believe that it would be important, then, to set rules for the members of DLP to prove to other skeptical schoolmates that gay men can indeed bond to promote service and camaraderie and not for sex. For example, members of the Florida International University fraternity, Gamma Lambda Mu, have their bylaws that state that members cannot date each other. In the end, a fraternity offers a brotherhood and life-long friendships, and I think that this is what gay Concordia students, like my friend, are looking to find. Therefore, I believe that Concordia should follow in McGill’s footsteps and create their own gay fraternity.

The Etcetera Page Drink of the week

Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2012 Vol. 29 issue 20

Tom Collins

Jacques Gallant


Kamila HinKson

Managing editor

The Super Bowl: the grandaddy of entertainment events for our neighbours to the south. Watched by approximately 111 million Americans last year, it’s an opportunity for men and women to get together and stuff their faces while cheering for a team trying to get a pigskin across a field. Some of us only tune in for the halftime show or the ads, but overall it’s a pretty good show whether you’re a football fan or not. @GetUpWithGo: This just in: Tom Brady

is not God (at least according to the NY Giants).

cHris Hanna

Production manager

Ingredients: 2 oz. London dry gin 1 tsp superfine sugar 1/2 oz. lemon juice Club soda

Co-news editors

Paula rivas Life editor

sHaimaa el-GHazaly

Assistant life editor

sofia Gay

Arts editor

Stir briefly and add a maraschino cherry

amanda l. sHore

Assistant arts editor

allie mason

Music editor

@MarissaMiller03: The only thing I

- Marilla Steuter-Martin

know about a “Super Bowl” is my homemade organic cauliflower soup that I put in one.

elizabetH macKay

Assistant music editor

Julian mei

Sports editor

@UncleDynamite: “Please welcome

alex Giubelli

Assistant sports editor

Madonna during our Super Bowl halftime, singing her latest single ‘My Ropey, Ropey Arms.’”

myles dolPHin

Opinions editor

GeorGe menexis

Assistant opinions editor

@BrentSpiner: Probably going to skip

the Super Bowl. Never been very interested in bowling.

Joel asHaK marilla steuter-martin

navneet Pall

Graphic by Valerie Brunet

Photo editor

Katie brioux

Graphics editor

marissa miller HeatHer riminGton elizabetH tomaras

Copy editors

Jennifer barKun soPHia loffreda Kerry macKinnon

Production assistants

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+THEATRE - Scientific Americans - Segal Centre - 20h00 +MUSIC - Kathleen Edwards - Le Cabaret du Mile End - 19h00 +MUSIC - Swollen Members & La Coka Nostra - Underworld - 21h00 +MUSIC - Hippolytos - La Sala Rossa - 20h00t

It’s your career. Get it right.

+THEATRE - The Presentation - MainLine Theatre - 20h00 +STINGERS - Women’s basketball - Concordia vs. Bishop’s - 18h00 Loyola campus gym +STINGERS - Men’s basketball - Concordia vs. Bishop’s - 20h00 Loyola campus gym +STINGERS - Women’s hockey - Concordia vs. Montreal - 19h30 - Ed Meagher Arena +MUSIC - Adam Cohen & Rachael Yamagata - Club Soda - 20h00 +MUSIC - Sam Roberts Band - Métropolis - 20h00 +MUSIC - Charles Bradley - Theatre Corona - 21h00 +MUSIC - Diatribe - Piranha Bar - 20h00 +MUSIC - Passovah Four Year Anniversary Party! - Il Motore - 21h00 +MUSIC - Videoville - Le Divan Orange - 21h00 +THEATRE - Romeo & Juliet - Mission Santa Cruz - 20h00 +THEATRE - Scientific Americans - Segal Centre - 20h30 +MUSIC - Hanson - Theatre Corona - 20h00 +MUSIC - Narc - Piranha Bar - 21h00 +MUSIC - Lock Up - Les Katacombes - 19h30 +STINGERS - Women’s hockey - Concordia vs. Carleton - 15h00 - Ed Meagher Arena +CINEMA POLITICA - Black Diamond: Fool’s Gold - 19h00 - H-110 +READING - Gollywog - Mai Cafe - 19h30 +THEATRE - Scientific Americans - Segal Centre - 20h00 +MUSIC - Veronica Falls - Belmont - 20h00 +MUSIC - William Fitzsimmons - La Sala Rossa - 20h00

Evening courses, small groups, 6 weeks, total of 24 hours. 200$ + 40$ registration fees. 370$ if 2 sessions bought

ENGLISH Session starts Session starts jan.27th 16 Feb.

IELTS prep course




Discount for Concordia Students!!! New!$40 SPANISH for beginners. SPANISH, ITALIAN ITALIAN Beginners 1 & 2

ILSC MONTREAL ATTENTION: 410 St Nicolas – Third floor Metro Place d’Armes or Square Victoria

(514) 876-4572 #210

> Master of Engineering (MEng) > Master of Applied Science (MASc)

+DANCE - Dans les plis and Everything was Beautiful and Nothing Hurt - Studio Hydro-Quebec - 20h30 +THEATRE - The Presentation - MainLine Theatre - 20h00 +THEATRE - Scientific Americans - Segal Centre - 20h00


Learn more about these degrees:

Apply now for September.

+CONFERENCE - LES HIPPIES QUÉBÉCOIS: TENDANCES LOCALES D’UN PHÉNOMÈNE GLOBAL - Leonard & Bina Ellen Gallery - 18h00 +VERNISSAGE - Saison Froide - Archive Boutique - 18h00 +THEATRE - Scientific Americans - Segal Centre - 20h00 +STINGERS - Men’s hockey - Concordia vs. McGill - 19h30 Ed Meagher Arena +MUSIC - Cody Simpson - Theatre Corona - 21h00 +MUSIC - Hommage à Téléphone - Piranha Bar - 21h00 +MUSIC - Laura Cahen - La Sala Rossa - 20h00

Communication, written beginner, intermediate, advanced.

The BCIT Building Science Graduate program offers a unique, interdisciplinary approach that teaches the theory and practical skills necessary to deliver durable, healthy and energy-efficient buildings.


client: Lynne Cruz ad name: Building Science publication: Campus Plus docket #: A16937 size: 6" x 7" colour: black template: text_program_nofill photo: no designer: Mirabelle proof 3: Jan 12, 2012 required: Jan 16, 2012 special notes:

The Concordian  

Volume 29 Issue 20