Page 1


VOLUME 59 ISSUE 20 • FEBRUARY 13, 2019







City ranked thirteenth in Canada

LSP results reveal thoughts on Valentine’s

Breaking down the genital piercing stigma

Popping the problematic concept

Cord PIcks talks about falling as an athlete

News, page 5

News, page 7

Arts & Life, page 13

Opinion, page 17

Sports, page 20

2 •


VOCAL CORD How would you spoil yourself on Valentine’s Day?


The Cord



THIS DAY IN HISTORY: FEBRUARY 13 1578: Tycho Brah first sketches “Tychonic system” of solary system. 1633: Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei arrived in Rome for trial before Inquisition for professing belief that the earch revolves around the Sun.

“Getting Wilf’s spin dip mac and cheese”

1861: Abraham Lincoln declared US president in Washington, D.C.

–Sloane McDowell, third-year archaology

1881: The feminist newspaper La Citoyenne is first published in Paris by activist Hubertine Auclert. 1981: Longest sentence published by “The New York Times” - 1286 words. 2000: The last original “Peanuts” comic strip appears in newspapers one day after Charles M. Schulz dies.

“Treat myself to dinner and chocolate.” –Jusleen Hayre, firstyear BBA EVA OU/PHOTO EDITOR

Staff Hayley McGoldrick helped our Valentine’s shoot. She asked for this to be cover, but she says this will suffice.

“Binge watch my favourite show on Netflix.” - L.J. Chua, third year archeology

“Spend quality time with my partner.” –Kyle Fritz, third-year political science/english


Compiled by Margaret Russell Photos by Jackie Vang NEXT ISSUE FEBRUARY 27, 2019

ARTS & LIFE EDITOR Emily Waitson


OPINION EDITOR Alyssa Di Sabatino





WEB DIRECTOR Garrison Oosterhof


NEWS EDITOR Hayley McGoldrick

ONLINE EDITOR Katherine Weber




LEAD REPORTER Margaret Russell




Yitian Cai Joseph DeFilippis Olivia Jones Emma McVicar Diana Edworthy Jamie Mere Joshua Goeree Brittany Tenhae Diana Edworthy

Rethinking the problematic concept of virginity by Alyssa Di Sabatino

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES All advertising inquiries can be directed to Care Schummer at or 519-884-0710 ext. 3560.

COLOPHON The Cord is the official student newspaper of the Wilfrid Laurier University community. Started in 1926 as the College Cord, The Cord is an editorially independent newspaper published by Wilfrid Laurier University Student Publications, Waterloo, a corporation without share capital. WLUSP is governed by its board of directors. Opinions expressed within The Cord are those of the author and do not necessarily refl ect those of the editorial board, The Cord, WLUSP, WLU or CanWeb Printing Inc. All content appearing in The Cord bears the copyright expressly of their creator(s) and may not be used without written consent. The Cord is created using Macintosh computers running OS X 10.10 using Adobe Creative Cloud. Canon cameras are used

for principal photography. The Cord has been a proud member of the Ontario Press Council since 2006. Any unsatisfied complaints can be sent to the council at The Cord’s circulation for a normal Wednesday issue is 4,500 copies and enjoys a readership of over 10,000. Cord subscription rates are $20.00 per term for addresses within Canada. The Cord has been a proud member of the Canadian University Press (CUP) since 2004.

PREAMBLE The Cord will keep faith with its readers by presenting news and expressions of opinions comprehensively, accurately and fairly. The Cord believes in a balanced and impartial presentation of all relevant facts in a news report, and of all substantial opinions in a matter of controversy. The staff of The Cord shall uphold all commonly held ethical conventions of journalism. When an error of omission or of commission has occurred, that error shall be acknowledged promptly. When statements are made that are critical of an individual, or an organization, we shall give those affected the opportunity to

reply at the earliest time possible. Ethical journalism requires impartiality, and consequently conflicts of interest and the appearance of conflicts of interest will be avoided by all staff. The only limits of any newspaper are those of the world around it, and so The Cord will attempt to cover its world with a special focus on Wilfrid Laurier University, and the community of Kitchener-Waterloo, and with a special ear to the concerns of the students of Wilfrid Laurier University. Ultimately, The Cord will be bound by neither philosophy nor geography in its mandate. The Cord has an obligation to foster freedom of the press and freedom of speech. This obligation is best fulfilled when debate and dissent are encouraged, both in the internal workings of the paper, and through The Cord’s contact with the student body. The Cord will always attempt to do what is right, with fear of neither repercussions, nor retaliation. The purpose of the student press is to act as an agent of social awareness, and so shall conduct the affairs of our newspaper.

Quote of the week: “One word, four letters -- CHILL.” - Editor-in-Chief Safina Husein to News Editor Hayley McGoldrick in an AGM quorum crisis.






“Tinder Tales” takes to The Turret despite storms AARON HAGEY NEWS EDITOR

On Feb. 13, between 7:00 to 9:30 p.m., the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union, in partnership with Just For Laughs, hosted their very own “Tinder Tales: A Comedy Show” in The Turret for 19+ students. The night gave a collection of performers the opportunity to share their experiences regarding the popular dating app to lighten the atmosphere and get students in the mood for Valentine’s Day. “They’re going to talk about their horrible dating stories and Tinder horror stories and things like that ... [and] they’ll each go up and tell their stories about love and finding love — and maybe not finding love,” said Kelsey Richard, programming & promotions manager for the Students’ Union.

The event, which was hosted by dynamic Canadian storyteller Isabel Zawtun, featured acts from a number of Just For Laughs comedians, including Al Val, Clif Knight, Krissia Valiente, Alan Shane Lewis, Kaleb Belak and Bria Hiebert. Though “Tinder Tales” is new to Laurier this year, the organization, which made its debut in Toronto, has been around since 2014. The Students’ Union was approached by McMaster University, who helped them to organize and orchestrate the event. “They knew the contact directly and then us, along with Sheridan and McMaster, decided to book them all this week, as a sort of Valentine’s Day thing — because it all fits perfectly,” Richard said. With a very reasonable price — just two dollars or free with the purchase of one of their candygrams — it came as a surprise that

the event in The Turret, which filled over roughly half the seats, didn’t have a greater turnout. Due to the inclement weather that lead to the university’s closure on Tuesday, the event was moved to Wednesday, meaning that a number of students were likely unable to attend due to midterms. Alternatively, the volatile and severe weather patterns in the past week might have proved too much of a hazard for some students. Despite the comedy behind the show, a lot of these tales are extremely relatable. Though comic relief is one such way to cope with stress, these tales also come with some caution behind them. Hopefully, these “Tinder Tales” will make their way back to Laurier sometime soon — when the weather warms up slightly — so more Golden Hawks can take advantage of this entertainment.



Starting on Monday, Feb. 11, Wednesday, Feb. 13 was the final day of voting for the Arts Undergraduate Society’s (AUS) presidential election period. The two candidates this year are Alex Hermosa, who will be going into his third year, as well as Jenny Ngu-yen, who will be going into her fifth year. The current presidents of AUS are Shelby Dockendorff and Alex-andra Dickinson. AUS is responsible for 28 different clubs available to arts undergraduate students, such as the Association of Political Science Students, Global Studies Students’ Association and WLU French Club to name a few, providing these clubs with the resources and funding to be able to cater directly to students in those disciplines. Hermosa, the current associate vice-president of clubs & associations for the Students’ Union at the Waterloo campus, has centered his platform around clubs, communication and transparency in AUS funding. This is to ensure students know exactly where their faculty levy is going and how each club will be supported by AUS not only financially, but physically by the AUS executives. “Being associate vice president of clubs set me up with a lot of experience and I saw where there was room for improvement and it made me want to run for president,” Hermosa said. “There is a decent amount of money that floats around, so I really want to make sure that the way we’re spending the money is really clear to students and how it brings value to their experience outside of academics.”

“It’s also proving to students more than ever now that there is a value in having AUS, with the changes in ancillary fees from the government,” he added Each student at Laurier pays into their specific faculty at Laurier, on top of paying into the Students’ Union; however, due to changes under the Ford government, some of these faculty association fees may turn to opt-out programming if they are not seen as an “essential” service. “You specifically pay into your faculty — so I work with a lot of Students’ Union clubs, but faculties will have a little bit more money to work with which means they can put on a lot more programming for students,” Hermosa said. “Usually it’s focussed specifically on integrating that learning beyond the classroom. So APSS, which is under AUS, they will do talks and bring in faculty related to political science, so I think that’s a really big part of it.” Nguyen has also focused on the transparency aspect in her platform, especially in funding, as every student pays into their faculty; but also transparency in what AUS is and does for arts students, as well as building a strong team to ensure all these goals can be met in the upcoming year. “Personally I feel like I’ve been involved in a lot of things here on campus and I’ve learned a lot about my community through my peers, my team, my mentors and everything — and I want to express the importance that you’re more than just an academic student,” Nguyen said. “Being president, I feel like expressing that through my leadership — it would make a difference. Being there for the students and just always being there for advice is

something the current presidents do and I want to continue that.” Voting for the presidents ended at 8 p.m. on Wednesday and the campaign period for both candidates was finished on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 11:59 p.m. “I feel like a lot of students go, ‘Oh, what is AUS?’ like when I was walking around campus and telling people to express their right to vote and telling them I was running for AUS president — and I feel a lot of people neglect the idea of AUS,” Nguyen said. “I feel like they kind of forget what AUS is or they don’t know; so I think my biggest thing would be promoting to arts students that we do actually have a faculty club, because I know half those students don’t know what it is.” As for the current presidents, they would love to see their successor continue on with the hard work they’ve built over the past year to keep up the standard they have set for AUS as a governing body. “I think the biggest thing for me was building relationships with clubs; that was the biggest thing this year, we really tried to get to know the presidents, get to know the clubs,” Dockendorff said. “Always, we want to get the most engagement from the general student body. But that’s a hard one to tackle, so the club presidents were a good step for us to go in,” Dickinson said. Although both of their roles will be fulfilled by one person in the upcoming year, both presidents are pleased with the candidates and the way the elections process has gone this year. “I was really impressed with it, I think that we tried to make sure all the candidates were prepared. It’s great to walk around and see everyone’s posters up; they were


coming to us all the time making sure everything was in order. I’m just really happy with what they’ve done and everything their posing is in line with what we want,” Dockendorff said. As for the challenges that come with the presidency, the current presidents hope to continue retention of students within AUS and

clubs to provide them with the best co-curricular experience possible at Laurier. “I would love if the next president has success with first years, because I think that’s something every club and association deals with, it’s hard to get first years involved because they don’t know,” Dickinson said.

4 • NEWS



Board of Directors elects new chair and vice-chair SAFINA HUSEIN EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

The newly elected board of directors for 2019-2020 held their first meeting last Thursday Feb. 7 to elect their new chair and vicechair. Current vice-chair Owen Bourrie was elected as the incoming chair and CGO of the 2019-20 board, while Sameed Hussain was elected as the incoming vice-chair. Bourrie has been planing to run for the chair and CGO position since he first became vice-chair, hoping to gain the necessary experience and knowledge to put him in the position he is in now. “I'm thankful that there’s 11 people on that board who are confident in my abilities … I'm here for them and I'm here for the organization and I want to do everything I can to ensure we have a successful year,” Bourrie said. Although elections will be a focus for Bourrie in the future, training will be a big first focus for the incoming chair.

I’m thankful that there’s 11 people on the board who are confident in my abilities ... I’m here for them. -Owen Bourrie, incoming chair and CGO of the board of directors

“The reason I advocated for having the chair and vice-chair elections so soon … instead of doing it at the beginning of April like last year is that we’re able to develop … a comprehensive training

plan for the directors to use and go through,” Bourrie said. “It’s gonna be really beneficial to them so they can learn what they're supposed to do so they're not learning on the job.” Bourrie plans on implementing realistic and practical training for directors this year. “The best way to do it is hands on, engaging with the material,” Bourrie said. The training will teach directors the knowledge they need to know, such as Robert’s Rules, the constitution, etiquette, etc. but will then allow them to apply the knowledge in a mock board meeting in which potential real life scenarios will be brought forth. “We’ll take the policies … apply them to those exact scenarios so when and if they come up, they know how to deal with them,” Bourrie said. Bourrie hopes this method of training will help prepare directors for a strong start to their tenure, unlike last year’s board, which had a slower start to their year due to the fact that all 12 directors were brand new to the board. This year, in addition to Bourrie, Osman Alwi and Sameed Hussain are also returning to the board from this past year, adding some prior knowledge and experience to the group. The new incoming vice-chair, Sameed Hussain, is excited to step into his new role and plans on using his prior experience that he has gained on the board this past year to his advantage. “I want to continue to advocate for the things I advocated for during elections, which is transparency, accountability and multi-campus activity,” Hussain said. Being that Hussain is from the Brantford campus, he hopes being vice-chair will allow him to better advocate for multi-campus

approaches. "The chair is from waterloo and I'm from Brantford so that’ll be a good dynamic for us,” Hussain said. As well, Hussain hopes to make the board more accessible to students. “I have been talking to full time members about this,” he said. “Board documents are not accessible to everyone such as people with disabilities … such as being blind or deaf.” “Having documents that people can read easily or that read aloud would be helpful.” Hussain was one of five candidates to run for the vice-chair position. Other candidates included Thomas Hamilton, Andrew Dang, Ty Thomas and Devyn Kelly. “It takes courage to put your name forward and running for a position like this,” Hussain said. “It shows that all the board members are prepared and ready.” Bourrie also doted on the board’s engagement, reiterating that the large participation demonstrates the incoming director’s eagerness and willingness to be present. “[I think it] speaks to how engaged our board already is and is going to be so I'm really excited for that,” he said. As for Bourrie and Hussain’s relationship, both are excited to begin working together and building on their already established relationship. “I’m in a unique position because I get to mentor him as the past vice-chair,” Bourrie said. “Me and Sameed have had a good relationship … I'm thankful that I do have someone with prior board experience ... with upcoming tuition cuts … there’s a lot of work to be done. I’m glad I have a strong second-hand to work alongside … I’m really thankful the board put their trust in him.”


Owen Bourrie will be the incoming chair and CGO of the 2019-20 board.


Sameed Hussain will be the incoming vice-chair of the 2019-20 board.

NEWS • 5



Waterloo named thirteenth most romantic city in Canada AARON HAGEY NEWS EDITOR

On Feb. 4, the Waterloo Chronicle released an article stating that Waterloo had been named the thirteenth most romantic city in the country by Amazon Canada, selected through a process of analyzing consumer sales data in the last year. Victoria, British Columbia was named the most romantic city; out of a potential top 20, BC also achieved six other nominations, including Vancouver. Ontario managed to secure a close second to BC, getting five other nominations including Oakville. But what is it about the city that has influenced its reputation as being “romantic,” especially during Valentine’s Day? Well, Brian Plouffe, owner and op-

erator of King Street Trio in uptown Waterloo, might be able to provide one explanation. On Feb. 5, King Street Trio was named amongst “the most romantic restaurants” in Canada by OpenTable, an online company that provides accessibility in booking restaurant reservations. “This is our fourth year in a row receiving [this award]. It’s guest-driven completely; guests who dine on OpenTable, at any of the OpenTable restaurants — and they have thousands of them across North America — are then given an opportunity to evaluate the restaurant,” Plouffe said. Boasting a 97 per cent recommendation rating, a 4.8 out of 5 average rating and series of outstanding reviews on OpenTable, they were also “proudly named one of

Open Table's Top 100 Restaurants in Canada 2017 & 2018.” But what does it take to be named OpenTable's Top 100 Restaurants in Canada: most romantic? Plouffe sees the secret behind the success of the restaurant as the focus on high-quality food and guest service. “We’re always excited when our guests feel that our venue fits a romantic dining experience [and] we are very happy when they rate us highly in terms of overall satisfaction,” Plouffe said. There are a number of elements that go into making KST an award-winning romantic venue; such as their music choice, candlelit dinners and having the chefs work in view of the customers, which Plouffe believes adds to the “mystique or romance” of the

restaurant. “[As well,] we are a smaller venue, so I think that definitely plays into it. The venue is always 58 seats, so I think definitely when you’re there it feels intimate; a lot of the finishes in the restaurant are very unique or somewhat refined, so it gives you a nice feeling.” Despite the volatile changes that have been occurring in uptown Waterloo in the past few years, with construction blocking off a number of businesses from their potential customers, Plouffe’s restaurant has persevered — and even thrived. “I think that perseverance was based on us making sure we take care of each and every guest when they come in the front door. We’re very tight in terms of timeline now; we’ve reduced our service period to six days a week from 5:30, so

we’re closed on Sundays,” Plouffe said. “You really get the A-Team in there every time you come in for dinner.” Valentine’s Day is easily one of their busiest nights of the year, as tables have already been fully-booked up, but Plouffe hopes that students will come and visit over the weekend and during their reading week as well. “Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we offer a dynamic weekday pricing program, so we offer a discount on the food … Monday’s are 20 per cent, Tuesdays are 15 [per cent] and Wednesdays are 10 [per cent],” Plouffe said. “I’d say that we’re not a pretentious restaurant and we’re always happy to have guests who have never been there before drop by and try us out.”

ners for collaboration, including the Accelerator Centre, the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. “Together we are all co-located [in EvolvGreen] for the purpose of using all of the programs that we offer and accelerating and pushing forward more clean economy development in Waterloo Region,” Davidson said. EvolvGreen is the main hub within the Evolv1 building, taking up the majority of the ground floor, which has approximately 14,000

square-feet of space for various commercial tenants to occupy. “It’s where SWR has their offices, the Accelerator Centre is hosting the TD Sustainable Futures Lab, the University of Waterloo’s Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE) is there … as well as the Wilfrid Laurier University Viessmann Centre [for Engagement and Research in Sustainability],” Davidson said. At the grand opening event, EvolvGreen was introduced to Mayor of Waterloo, Dave Jaworksy, alongside several elected officials

within the region. The organizers and partners also took the time to thank all of their funders, some of which were represented, as well as unveiling EvolvGreen’s sponsorship wall, dedicated to their generous support. “It was an opportunity to allow people to see what’s happening there, so what start-ups are there, there were some [demonstrations] of the work that they’re doing — and they’re all clean-tech startups, as well as tours of the space,” Davidson said.


EvolvGreen opens doors to the public MARGARET RUSSELL LEAD REPORTER

Waterloo Region’s work force and growing economic infrastructure was recently introduced to a new clean economy work centre in the David Johnston Research and Technology Park. EvolvGreen had its grand opening event on Friday, Feb. 1, unveiling the project which has been in the works since Evolv1, Canada’s first ever zero-carbon building. Evolv1 was designed specifically to innovate modern work environment standards with a ecologically-friendly, tech-savvy layout and is home to a wide variety of tenants, including TextNow and EY. Its construction began in April of 2017 and was opened for use in November of 2018. “EvolvGreen was part of the original vision for the Evolv1 project. The idea was to create a sort of hub for clean economy development within Waterloo Region,” said Tova Davidson, executive director at Sustainable Waterloo Region. “So not only is the building an example of ‘how do we transition to sort of a different way of think-

ing about what business can do?’, but also the EvolvGreen centre is intended to be a collaboration that brings together partners, to be able to build a cleaner economy in Waterloo Region and to leverage some of the economic benefits.”

The idea was to create a sort of hub for clean economy development within Waterloo Region. YITIAN CAI/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER -Tova Davidson, executive director, Sustainable WR

Sustainable Waterloo Region (SWR), an organization focused on supporting other local organizations with their sustainability, economically and environmentally, was the operationalizing organization for this project. They worked to convene several part-

6 • NEWS








Preet Chauhan, a fourth-year PhD student at Laurier, has been researching how to combat isolation in seniors.

Laurier post-grad is researching isolation, loneliness in the elderly HAYLEY MCGOLDRICK NEWS EDITOR

Preet Chauhan, a fourth-year PhD student at Laurier, has made news with her award-winning research in the study of isolation of elderly adults and the effects on their well-being when connected with a network versus being alone. After completing her undergraduate studies in psychology at York University in Toronto, Chauhan chose to continue her education with Laurier’s psychology program and the help of assistant professor Nicky Newton. “When I was looking for what to do for my Master’s or what to do after my undergrad, that’s when I decided to come to Laurier based on the fact that it is a smaller school and I really wanted to go somewhere with a close-knitted smaller community to be able to explore my different research ideas and to work with different people,” Chauhan said. Chauhan gained interest after volunteering with Telecheck, a telephone service that provides someone to talk to for those in need. She started off in the general program, and then moved to the service for seniors specifically, where she realised the significance of these adults getting someone to talk to. “When I started it wasn’t necessarily just with the senior line, they have several different lines like

the regular 24/7 helpline where anybody can call in at any time, and then they have these more particular programs which are either for seniors and even have programs in different languages to support those who may not speak English,” Chauhan said.

To me ... it was very shocking to know that individuals in the community ... could be very isolated in their own homes. -Preet Chauhan, fourth-year PhD student at Laurier University

“Isolation in different communities, they have lines available for those seniors as well. I started as a volunteer just for the entire organization and I was always passionate about giving back to the community in some way, so volunteering during my undergrad was just something I started doing to give back to my community.” As Chauhan continued to volunteer with the Telecheck program, she was eventually moved to the line for seniors, and her passion for research that stemmed out of her

undergrad thesis turned into what would be her doctoral dissertation. “I started volunteering for the line that is for older adults and there I became very involved in seeing how this line is supporting and empowering these adults to not only engage with the volunteers on the phone, but also providing resources so they can engage with others in the community,” Chauhan said. “That’s where I became more passionate about work with this line to see how this line is supporting individuals and how we can improve and continue to do the same thing.” Though Chauhan will not be defending her dissertation until the summer, her research has shown the impacts of just how much one phone call can mean to some elderly adults as they have barely any contact throughout their dayto-day lives. “I learnt that some of these individuals don’t have any other human contact other than the volunteers from this program, so that really touched my heart. They wait on this one call to be their human contact,” Chauhan said. “To me, as a very socially connected person, it was very shocking to know that individuals in the community that we live in — and they can be our neighbours, they can be living on our street — but they could be very isolated in their own homes.”

NEWS • 7


LSP survey looks into students’ thoughts on love PRANAV DESAI SPORTS EDITOR

Laurier Student Poll (LSP) conducted a survey over the past week asking Wilfrid Laurier University students about their thoughts on relationships, sex, dating apps and their mindset during Valentine’s Day. The survey was conducted online and in-person, receiving 211 responses from various undergraduate and master’s students at Wilfrid Laurier University. 57 per cent of the respondents identified as females while 43 per cent identified as males. 54 per cent respondents admitted to currently being in a relationship. 49 per cent of the female respondents said that they were in a relationship, while only 38% of the male respondents said that they were in a relationship. 55 per cent of the female students said that they celebrate Valentine’s Day, while 58 per cent of the male students said that they celebrate Valentine’s Day.

These statistics are to be expected since Valentine’s Day is a holiday that is much more prevalent between the younger part of the population. The fact that a higher percentage of the male respondents celebrate the holiday than the female respondents even though not as many males are in a relationship shows the progression and development of how individuals celebrate Valentine’s Day. The holiday has now become more about family and self-love than ever and these statistics are evidence of that. 70 per cent of the students stated that they are sexually active. 63 per cent of the female respondents said that they are sexually active, while 78 per cent of the male respondents said that they are sexually active. The percentage of sexually active students increased as the age of the students increased. The results for the percentage of sexually active students were as follows: 42 per cent of first-year students, 71 per cent of

second-year students, 74 per cent of third-year students and 78 per cent of fourth-year students are sexually active. There were a small number of fifth-year students who responded to the survey, but since the sample size is too small, the results for their responses have not been presented. Another question that was asked in the survey was whether or not students feel lonelier during Valentine’s Day. 57 per cent of the respondents said that they do not feel lonelier on Valentine’s Day. It can be hypothesized that since Valentine’s Day is not only about romantic relationships anymore, people who are not in a relationship have greater incentive to celebrate without feeling lonely. It can also be hypothesized that since the respondents of the survey are in a university setting, they are more likely to be surrounded by friends and prospective romantic partners, which can reduce the loneliness feeling. 67 per cent of the students said that they are satisfied with their

current relationship status and sex life. 41 per cent of the respondents said that they are more likely to look for a relationship or be sexually active around Valentine’s Day time.

The holiday has now become more about family and self-love than ever and these statistics are evidence of that.

Although this number is not alarmingly high, it can be hypothesized that a good portion of the Laurier student body feels socially pressurized by Valentine’s Day and therefore they are more likely to find themselves sexually active or

in a relationship during this time of the year. The survey also asked students about dating apps and which app was their preferred choice. 44 per cent of the respondents said that they use Tinder, 14 per cent said that they use Bumble, 2 per cent said that they use Grindr, 3 per cent said that they use a different app that wasn’t listed and 37 per cent said that they do not use dating apps. Finally, the last question on the survey asked the students if they are more likely to use dating apps during Valentine’s Day time, and only 26 per cent of the respondents said that they are more likely to use them. This result continues the theme of the romantic relevance of Valentine’s Day perhaps not being as high as it has been in the past. It can be hypothesized that since people are now focusing on self and family love during Valentine’s Day more than ever, they do not find it necessary to use dating apps just because it is Valentine’s Day.

70 per cent of students said they are sexually active.

58 per cent of the female students said that they celebrate Valentine’s Day, while 55% of the male students said that they celebrate Valentine’s Day.

43 per cent of students said they do feel lonelier on V-Day

Be smart. Stay safe. Be respectful. Let’s all be good neighbours.



get the free app



Need some last minute valentine’s? We’ve got you covered!




Our favourite relationship expert on campus is back and ready to answer your most anonymous and pressing questions about life, love and relationships.

Is that an iclicker in your pocket or are you just happy to see me



From: My love for you will last longer than the tim‛s line in the science building

To: From:

Are you The Cord? Cause I want you to put out on Wednesday‛s (with consent of course)


Dear Cordelia, I’ve been with my boyfriend for a while now, and I think I love him. I don’t always know how to manage our relationship though, and when I should be putting his needs first, or mine. Sometimes I put myself first and it upsets him, but other times the opposite happens. I don’t really know how to communicate that to him. I hope I communicated it well enough to you. But I really need help. I don’t want to be selfish, but I also don’t want to be unhappy when I try only to please people. Please help.


You have to find a balance. That’s what a relationship is. Obviously you have strong feelings for him, but if he has those same feelings for you he will also need to realize that sometimes you are going to want to take some time to yourself and take care of yourself. If you spend your life trying to please someone else you won’t find happiness no matter how much you love that person. If they can’t understand that, they may not be the one.

Q. A.

If you know that your mental illness is interfering and causing you to be bitchy, there are some steps you can take. Mental illness explains it, but it doesn’t excuse it. Communicate to your partner that your mental health is not in a great place right now and you love them very much but these irrational thoughts and feelings are beyond your control. Communication is key in all relationships regardless of your mental health, so just talk it out.


Dear Cordelia, I’ve known this guy for almost 10 years now, and I’ve only realized recently that I’ve had a crush on him for a while. I try to talk to him and be his friend but he just doesn’t seem to care enough. It’s not that I just want a romantic relationship from him, but I also want to be his friend. What do I do?


First, establish where your friendship is at. Obviously you can’t start a romantic relationship without a solid foundation, in your case being a friendship, and if it’s rocky there’s little hope of moving forward. Also, if you have been friends with someone for a while and want to indulge in romantics, you also run the risk of losing a friendship. You don’t choose who you have feelings for, but there’s always that to consider. If you think he doesn’t care enough, don’t exhaust yourself emotionally for someone who won’t reciprocate. If your feelings become too much to handle, communicate them.

Dear Cordelia,My mental illness is interfering in my relationship. I love my boyfriend more than anything but I am being so bitvhy and can't control it. Help! Sincerely, Naked and afraid (with anxiety)

Be a Pilot!

Unique. Adventure. Excitement. Integrated Airline Transportation Pilot Program

Who is it for? • Graduates from ANY university or college program • International students seeking a fast, but comprehensive route to airline flying Full-time 18-month program, includes the following: • 750 classroom ground school hours • 205 aircraft flying hours • 50+ simulator training hours (fixed base)

Apply today! Program begins January 13, 2020 WWFC’s program is approved by Transport Canada and approved as vocational programs under the Private Career Colleges Act, 2005 (#105919).

Visit or call 519-648-2213 for more information






















10 • NEWS



11 •


Arts & Life


No more beating around the bush: Let’s talk about sexual health Arts & Life Editor Emily Waitson gets in deep about vaginas and contraception Despite the continued insistence that we are becoming a more body positive, sexually progressive society, vaginal health is still a topic that is looked at as uncomfortable, embarrassing or even taboo, of all things, to talk about openly. With puberty books that had basic diagrams of penises and vaginas and phrases like “what to do about the new hair down there” at my disposal — along with a shamelessly honest mother who wouldn’t shy away from my prying questions — I didn’t realize until I went to high school how fortunate I was to be taught what I considered to be basic but important knowledge. Sexual education is an exceptionally lacking tool that continues to be threatened (thanks Doug Ford) and it is imperative, more than ever, that people have an understanding of the functionality of their genitals and reproductive systems. Stacey Jacobs, the sexual health education manager at Sexual Health Options, Resources & Education (SHORE Centre) and an instructor at the University of Waterloo, believes that knowledge about vaginal health is vital for people to have. “I think that people forget that your sexual health is part of your overall health and well-being. Our bodies are completely connected; if you’re missing one piece, we’re not healthy, so we need to start looking at our bodies as a whole, first of all,” Jacobs said. “There’s lots of pieces — because we really don’t talk about vaginas and vulvas enough or menstruation — or any of the other things that go along; so UTIs, bladder infections, endometriosis, fibroids. People don’t really have a lot of answers or knowledge about those things.” Your vagina can often be an indicator of other problems that may be going on inside your body and is a reflection of potential issues that may need to be addressed. That’s why it’s imperative for women to know their own bodies and be able to identify what is and isn’t normal for them. “Then it becomes really scary and complicated, people think that they’re the only ones who this happens to — and once you start talking about those things, then you realize that other people have questions, other people have concerns, so it’s good if we can all talk about it openly. It’s really, I think, the first step,” Jacobs said. The stigmatization surrounding this open dialogue is often what prevents people from knowing how to properly care for their vaginas and the habits that are commonly portrayed to be the “norm,” are ones they shouldn’t be doing. And although the vagina is strong and mighty, the vulva is sensitive and delicate — neither need much interference or help in terms of cleanliness. “The vagina is extra-sensitive — the skin is more sensitive. So just some really basic things, like not using dryer sheets on our underwear. Bubble bath is all chemicals. We don’t need to clean inside the vagina. Douche[ing] is not necessary,” Jacobs said. Other misconceptions that accompany vaginal health tend to be about pap smears, the screening procedure that helps detect cervical cancer, and how necessary

they really are to have done. “The new guidelines say that once you’re 21 if you’re sexually active, you should get a pap test — and sexually active includes vaginal sex, anal sex, oral sex, digital sex, sharing sex toys, with someone of any gender,” Jacobs said. “[But] It’s important [to know] because the pap test is also really good at detecting cancer before it becomes cancer. Most people aren’t comfortable getting pap tests; it’s not comfortable, it’s not something they want to do, but it can honestly prevent you from getting cancer.” There’s general awareness surrounding STI protection for heterosexual couples, but for same-sex partners, the information isn’t as widely known or taught. “Even using gloves — so that’s something that a lot of people aren’t aware of or don’t think about, putting condoms overtop of sex toys if you want to share them. There [are] lots of little things you can do. I personally don’t think it’s necessary to get a sexual history of all your sexual partners, I don’t think you have to share that personal information unless you want to,” Jacobs said “But sometimes it’s not safe, sometimes it’s not necessary — many people stigmatize you once they find out different things. Unless that’s something that you want to do within your relationship, that’s okay, but this idea that we have to talk about all those things.” “The only piece that’s really important, I would say, is that you do get tested if you’re worried or have questions or you’re not sure if you do have any infections or diseases,” she said. Beyond condoms and birth control pills, the availability of alternative and potentially more effective contraceptives are expanding, which is an aspect of sexual healthcare that seems to be steadily improving. “Something that is becoming more and more common now is the IUD. People like it because you have to get it put in, it’s a prescription, a doctor has to insert it; however, after that, you don’t really have to do anything — you don’t have to remember to take your pill every day. It is over 99 per cent effective, which is excellent,” Jacobs said. OHIP+ will currently cover IUD insertion; however, it is important to consult with your doctor about what options would work best for you. In order to move forward to a place where more women are more sexually confident and comfortable in their own skin, Jacobs suggests starting with the basics and working from there. “I think one of the main things would be to like themselves better; so for instance, get to know their bodies better so they have more confidence in their body. Not looking at what it looks like but how it functions and the absolutely amazing things that it does,” Jacobs said. “If you think about menstruation and fertility and all those things, it’s pretty cool. Getting to know their menstrual cycles can be really empowering — so keeping track of that and not just when you have your

period, [but] keeping track of things like energy levels ... It’s really empowering to look at those things.” As a regular contributor and columnist for The Community Edition, Jacobs also has an informative “Sexplanations” series of articles that explore various sexual topics that aren’t typically explored or discussed. Overall, more people should strive to have her level of comfort and awareness about our bodily functions that we often ignore. “… I love talking about vaginas,” Jacobs said.


12 • ARTS & LIFE



Finding your twin flame in life DIANA EDWORTHY STAFF WRITER

Oftentimes when people fall in love with someone that they think they will spend the rest of their lives with, they are convinced that they are soulmates. But what really is a soulmate? In actuality, there are many different types of soul connections you can make with someone – most notably a soul mate or twin flame. If you believe in certain aspects of spirituality that suggest that people are capable of living multiple lives and being reincarnated, the idea of soul connections might also resonate with you. Traditionally, your soulmate is simply believed to be someone that you have connected with before, in a previous life. When you meet one of your soulmates, there is often a feeling of instant familiarity and a sense of remembering the person rather than getting to know them. Our soulmates can be friends, family, teachers, partners, etc. Most people have many different soulmates in their lives, particularly if they are an old soul who has lived through many lives. Something infinitely more intense and rare than a soulmate connection is the connection of twin flames. Ancient philosophers suggest that at the point of

creation, some souls were split in half to explore different aspects of spirituality and learn different life lessons so that one day those two mirror souls could reunite and complete each other. Twin flame connections are powerful and life-changing, and will not happen in every lifetime – maybe not at all. When twin flames meet, there is an instant friendship connection and feeling of recognition. The two people will feel comfort and the ability to be themselves with each other, often described as feeling like being home when you’re with this person. It is typical for a twin flame to come into your life at a bad time — when you’re in a relationship with someone else or going through some sort of turmoil in your life. Despite the feeling of familiarity and bond between twin flames, twin flame relationships are characterized by chaos and conflict. The reason that the universe brings twin flames together is to point them in the right direction to become the person they were meant to be. Your twin flame will push you into discomfort and show you all the things you need to change in order to achieve your potential. The combination of resistance to change and the overwhelming intensity of the connection can lead

to one of the twin flames running from the relationship while the other chases. It is common for the runner-chaser dynamic to come into play in a twin flame reunion, and it often switches between which partner is running and which partner is chasing. During their time apart, twin flames will never stop thinking about or caring about each other. They are magnetically drawn back towards each other, which continually results in conflict and another breakup. Twin flames can only be together once they reach their full potential and fix the things about themselves that they are avoiding, so twin flames don’t always end up together in the end. When they do, it is the most powerful soul connection that one can have. As the concept of twin flames becomes more well-known, couples in tumultuous relationships are quick to excuse toxic and unhealthy behaviour as the chaos of a twin flame relationship. On the other hand, couples in healthy relationships like to pin themselves as twin flames because they feel that being so in love means that they must be mirror souls. In reality, the likelihood of you meeting your twin flame is unlikely in any lifetime, so if it does happen it is all the more intense and special.




Non-monogamy can sound daunting and uncomfortable, or it can sound exciting and fun. It is an umbrella term that refers to a relationship that isn’t exclusive. Many people have consensually

non-monogamous relationships, but it’s still so taboo in our society. It can be referred to as an open relationship or a polyamorous relationship and can be delved into at many points in a relationship. Some people might be extremely put off by the idea of an open relationship, and that’s ok. It’s not for everyone. However, for others, it’s a requirement for a relationship and something they crave. It is very important, when entering into an open relationship, that boundaries

and rules are immediately laid down. Whether or not you can have repeat sexual partners, how many times a week you can be with someone other than your significant other, what kind of acts you can engage in, if you are going to discuss secondary partners with your primary partner, etc. These are all important and must be discussed before beginning to expand your sex life, otherwise, the open relationship will end in naught but heartbreak. Another important thing to remember is that you can call it off at any time. If you change your mind about how happy the open relationship makes you talk to your partner about it. In any relationship, communication is key. In an open relationship, it is vital. Any discomfort needs to be mentioned immediately, but you also need to make sure you discuss the happiness of the relationship. We need to remember when discussing monogamy and consensual non-monogamy that monogamy may be the norm, but it is not practical for some individuals. Just like monogamous relationships, if you are happy with your primary partner and happy in your relationship, that is what is important. Consensual non-monogamy doesn’t make a relationship any less important or special in your life. Just because you and your partner spend time with other sexual partners, doesn’t mean that your commitment to each other is any less than it was before. As long as it is open and honest, it is also ethical and responsible.


Top five underrated love songs for V-Day HAYLEY MCGOLDRICK NEWS EDITOR

Whether you’re snuggled up with your boo watching Netflix or wondering why John from Bumble ghosted you after such a great third date, these underrated love songs can bring out the hopeless romantic in anybody. “Single” – The Neighbourhood Despite the misleading title, the song is about lead singer Jesse Rutherford’s relationship with his long-time girlfriend, Devon Lee Carlson. The song contains heart-melting lyrics like “I don’t ever mind sharing oxygen/I just want to get lost in your lungs” and “I don’t know if we should be alone together/I still got a crush that’s obvious.” Rutherford concludes the song by addressing Carlson’s dad, Dave, singing “So Dave, would you let your baby be my girl?” The song captures listeners with the irresistible lyrics that are an interpretation of just how it feels to love and be loved by someone unconditionally. “Hourglass” – Catfish and the Bottlemen Written from the perspective of lead singer Van McCann’s girlfriend, the song focuses on how hard life is in a long-distance relationship and how it can really break a couple down, or in this case, make the other party miss their partner so much it consumes all their thoughts. With lines like “Come back, move in, mess my place/Chest infect me, waste my days” speaking about how no matter the consequences of having your partner live with you, the pros outweigh the cons just to be in their presence again, the track focusses on how important a physical presence can be in a relationship. “Let Me Know” – LANY Off the album “Malibu Nights”

written about lead singer Paul Klein’s breakup with pop star Dua Lipa, the chill synth backtrack of the song covers a plea saying thateven though his partner, or now ex, has fallen out of love, he wants to know what he can change to get her back. The song doesn’t have a break-up anthem feel like other songs on the LP due to the nature of still being in love and willing to work on things rather than reminiscing on what could have been. Klein still wants to mend things, and through the lyrics of “I can’t promise you that I’ll be waiting/ But for you, I’ll leave anything behind” the backing vocals sing “I still love you” throughout the song. “Dark Side of the Gym” – The National Also known as the “Prom Song,” this song carries a beat that could be played while slow dancing after a drunken night out at 3 a.m., the message in this track seems to be love in its purest form. As frontman Matt Berninger sings “I’m gonna keep you in love with me for a while”, the song has the classic theme of a boy seeing a girl and being too nervous to say anything, and even years later when he finally has the girl how the feeling can still pop up every now and then of how even just looking at this girl can leave Berninger speechless. “Love Somebody” – St. Lucia From the perspective of someone not in a relationship, this synth-pop group creates an old-school, slow jam type melody and they do it while singing about the longing and fascination yet uncertainty that comes with a new relationship. Though most of the song is made up of the simple lyrics of “I wanna love someone/I wanna love somebody”, the verses show the singer longing for acceptance and validation. The hesitation of not wanting to be rejected yet the overwhelming need to have a relationship is the contrast in the song as the song ‘s outro sings “I wanna love somebody/Go find me somebody/Go find somebody to love” as if the person of interest has not already been identified.

ARTS & LIFE • 13


Bedazzled bits Arts and Life Editor Emily Waitson breaks down the stigmaaround gential piercings Piercings of any kind — with the exception of ear piercings perhaps — have historically gained a certain amount of stigma depending on their body part placement and style. There probably isn’t a more controversial piercing of choice, however, than the different variations you can get on male and female genitals. These can range from the Prince Albert, a piercing that goes through the underside of the head of a penis, to labia piercings: rings or tunnels that line the outer/inner vaginal lips, usually in pairs — and most people don’t realize the number of options that are available to bedazzle their intimate areas. As a typically taboo body alteration to discuss, genital piercings are slowly gaining relative popularity and acceptance. Whether it’s to increase personal body confidence about their private parts, impress a partner or make sexual intercourse more pleasurable — which some of these piercings have the ability to do, depending on the person — people are taking the plunge to get them done more often than you’d think. Daniel Thomas, a piercer at Thrive Studios in Cambridge and a member of the Association of Professional Piercers, has pierced in three countries around the world — and knows firsthand what it’s like to do these kinds of piercings professionally. “I do a fair bit of genital piercings,” Thomas said. “They’re pretty popular — they’re not like an ear-piercing-popular. I wouldn’t say that we’re a super busy studio that does them all the time, [but] we still do them multiple times a week.” One of the most important things about genital piercing consideration is doing the right research into what it is you want and finding the most qualified professional to do it for you. “You really need to research your piercer. It’s something that generally only one or two piercers in each area do a lot of and then they’ll specialize in that sort of thing. I see a lot of really bad genital piercings that are done by people

that are just trying to work it out. So go to a piercer that has a good reputation for doing genital piercings,” Thomas said. In terms of whether or not genital piercings will increase sexual pleasure in the bedroom, that aspect comes down to the person and the location of the piercing. “[It] depends on which piercings you go for and how your anatomy is built. And if that’s what you’re going for, putting a ring in your dick if you’re a bad lay and then thinking that’s going to make you good at sex — it’s not magic,” Thomas said. “You have to be good at it first before the ring’s going to do anything. One of the good things is a piercing where it kind of gives an ‘x marks the spot’ for the clit and makes it a little bit easier for men to find, or whoever’s looking for it.” If you do decide to get a genital piercing done, the healing time varies significantly from piercing to piercing. Vaginal piercings, for instance, tend to have faster healer times because they’re in an area that cleans itself — which is why you shouldn’t use soap down there, ever. “Depends on which one you go for. Some of them are really, really quick and easy, like maybe four to eight weeks; and then other ones are more towards the six to twelvemonth mark, if it goes through a lot more tissue,” Thomas said. As a statement of sexual expression and individuality, the perception around body jewelry is shifting. With more people getting nipple piercings, the desire to move past the “norm” of socially acceptable piercings is being pushed. The vulnerability involved with getting a genital piercing can be daunting, but with a wider variety of body piercings gaining acceptance and demand, the possibility of having them done safely and without judgement is becoming more possible.


14 • ARTS & LIFE



Working out the kinks in BDSM and other sexual fetishes JOSH GOEREE STAFF WRITER


As Valentine’s Day comes to Laurier this week, love is in the air. While some people like to celebrate with a romantic dinner, chocolates, flowers and a passionate night of lovemaking, there are some people who like to get more adventurous than some. This may include such activities as spanking, choking, using hot wax, various types of sex toys, threesomes or BDSM. So why is it that some people are into kinkier activities than others? While a lot of people will discriminate individuals who are more adventurous in the bedroom, it’s really fascinating how some people are into it. It was just in 2013 that the new Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) changed the definitions of fetishism and BDSM between consensual and pathological. For decades, kinky sexual behaviour was considered to be a mental disorder. The first assumption of BDSM was that the person who engages in it was abused as a child. This may not be the case completely. In a dissertation from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology from 2017, Gautami Polepally Ashok took a look at childhood abuse and how it had

an impact on sexual behaviour and self-esteem. The results of the study showed “non-significant multivariate difference in childhood trauma between those who engaged in BDSM and those who didn’t.” But they note that those who engage in BDSM scored significantly higher on emotional abuse and emotional neglect than those who hadn’t. This may show a sign that those who were abused emotionally growing up may have higher chances of engaging in BDSM in adulthood. This didn’t necessarily mean that the abuse had to be sexual. When looking at when people start to realize they have kinkier desires, some psychologists believe it starts in childhood. Samuel Hughes is a psychological researcher at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He was interviewed by Psychology Today in May 2018 about his research into the experiences of those who consider themselves “kinky.” When asked when individuals had their earliest memories of their kinks, most figure it out before the age of 18. He notes the most common age group was between five and 10 years old. However, not everyone with a kink finds out until their adulthood. There is also a neurological explanation for kinky behaviour. There are parts of the brain that are dedicated to certain parts of the body. In a study published in the journal Biological Psychology, researchers looked specifically at

the neuroscience of BDSM. They had subjects who were into BDSM to look at “erotic and disgust-inducing” photos. In both groups, the occipital cortex, hippocampus, thalamus and amygdala were all found to be involved in the processing of both “disgusting” and erotic photographs. Specifically, as the study summary notes, the ventral striatum was activated when sexually arousing photos were shown. When talking about doing sexual activities with objects, people can grow attachments to them if they’re used a lot. This is a simple classical conditioning. Let’s use an example with red kinky boots. Before any sexual activity happens, they are just regular boots. There is no emotional sexual reaction in the brain associated with those boots. Then you and a partner use those boots when having sex for a period of time and those red boots will become associated with sexual activity. Every time you see those boots without the sex, there is a reaction similar to what would be felt during sex. It would be less intense than the sex itself, but a reaction nevertheless. At the end of the day, if you’re spending Valentine’s day with your partner or by yourself, it’s important to have fun. Grab the one or ones you love and get freaky with it. And try not to judge what other people are into. Just remember the wise words of Squirrelly Dan from Letterkenny: “Different strokes for


Going the distance for your far away partner MARGARET RUSSEL LEAD REPORTER

Valentine’s Day can feel like a form of victory when you have a designated individual to share it with. This day may also make you feel defeated when you have a partner but are in the midst of a long-distance relationship. As it has been perpetuated, Valentine’s Day calls for extraordinary, social media-worthy acts of affection that ultimately places a lot of pressure on eager young couples in the dating pool. What creates even more tension, however, is the geographical separation that you and your partner may be dealing with at this volatile and unpredictable time in your lives. Our late teens and early twenties create a lot of opportunity for physical separation from our loved ones. Perhaps you’ve fallen in love as a teenager and your ambition to attend school in a different city was prioritized. Maybe your partner


has gone to pursue a career in which you’ve found yourself being supportive from the sidelines — through phone calls and sparse visiting opportunities. Whatever the case may be, this is your friendly reminder that love is manageable at a distance. Notably, Valentine’s Day specifically provides significant others with a lot of opportunity for disappointment, and for those without the opportunity to share the day with your partner, that window of

disappointed only increases. The cliched idea of a perfect Valentine’s Day is daunting. Perhaps your own ideal is to spend the night in, binge-watching a series while indulging in ice-cream sundaes, or maybe something more extravagant like dinner at your favourite restaurant. If your situation entails, perhaps you long for an especially nuanced moment of physical intimacy. But what if your significant other lives in a different city, province

or country? Then Valentine’s Day may end up feeling like a missed opportunity or lost cause. The good news is that you live in the year 2019, in which readily accessible technology is a norm and long-distance relationships can take on an entirely new premise when compared to 20 years ago. The Valentine’s Days that I’ve spent without the company of my partner have definitely been challenging. The silver lining is, however, that

it creates an aspect of strength and resiliency within the relationship that puts flowers, chocolate and sex on the back-burner. Use your long-distance Valentine’s Day to express your appreciation from a different angle. Relationships take a ton of work, but when you and your partner are putting in the effort to keep the connection strong over physical separation, there’s a lot to celebrate. Long-distance relationships allow you to find a way to show your gratitude in a creative way. Share and enjoy your dinners over a video call. Be old-school romantic and hand-write them a Valentine and mail it to them. If you’re craving a steamy moment, send them a couple of naughty texts to keep the sexual tension burning. Most importantly, be mindful that Valentine’s Day is a holiday of generalized purpose, and that all relationships are unique. Although you may find yourself without your partner on this day of romance, being in a place of confidence about it will only benefit you when you eventually find yourselves meeting in the middle once again.

• 15




Editor’s note: Showing Pride in Public this sense of confidence and pride and courage all the time if they are “out.” But that’s so far from the truth. I’ve been confident in my sexuality for many years. But this doesn’t mean the long process it took to become confident in myself has translated into being confident in public. My girlfriend and I talk about how we wish we had seen more LGBTQ+ couples who weren’t afraid to show affection in public when we were younger. Even now, seeing other same-sex couples who aren’t afraid to show affection puts a smile on our faces. It’s hopeful to think that, just maybe, there might be one person who sees us holding hands and develops the courage to one day do the same. Just last month, we were at the mall and while we were holding hands, a pair of guys whispered as they walked by us and said, “Hey, they are holding hands.” We looked at each other in fear — our first instinct was that we were being judged. But when I looked back at them, I noticed they too were holding hands. It’s moments like this and the one at Chainsaw that makes the process of being ourselves in public worth it. But even more importantly, I’m lucky to have a girlfriend that makes me feel confident and safe to lean over and kiss her in public. I’m lucky to have her as a rock and to be able to feel her hand in mine when people stare. She gives me the kind of love and happiness that I shouldn’t have to hide. It can be scary thinking about what people might be thinking. Not everyone is going to be kind. And not everyone is going to reserve judgements. But it’s the few people who have instilled acceptance that make this process easier and, ultimately, worth it. It’s for that reason that I know my girlfriend and I will “just keep loving each other,” no matter who is watching.


This past weekend, my girlfriend and I were at Chainsaw with a group of our friends. Being together in public felt natural — her hand in mine, she leaned in to kiss me, when I realized a girl sitting at the table next to us had been staring intently at our affection. Later in the night, we went to the bathroom together — like all good gay couples do — and we were discussing the girl who had been staring at us. My girlfriend and I have a habit of analyzing why people might be staring and whether their looks are positive, negative or indifferent. We were in the middle of agreeing that despite the women’s intent, it felt right to be ourselves because for once we didn’t feel like the ‘token gays’ in the room, when the people in the two other stalls began to chime in. The first lady yelled out, “Kiss her more!” We laughed and as we began to leave, the second stall opened and out walked a middle-aged woman who motioned for us to come back inside. We did — and she said: “Everyone is going to judge you no matter what, regardless of your sexuality. So just keep loving each other.” Her words, “Just keep loving each other,” have been echoing in my mind ever since. Our experience at Chainsaw wasn’t a first — when we are out together, we have gotten stares and double takes. But each time my girlfriend squeezes my hand a little tighter, looks up at me and smiles reassuringly, even though I’m sure the pit in her stomach is just as present as mine. I think there’s an expectation for LGBTQ+ couples to uphold



DIRECTOR Rosalind Horne

CHAIR Terrence Mroz


VICE-CHAIR Shyenne MacDonald

TREASURER Garrison Oosterhof


PRESIDENT Terrence Mroz FINANCE MANAGER Randy Moore randy@rcmbrooks. com ADVERTISING MANAGER Care Lucas care.lucas@wlusp. com

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Lakyn Barton lakyn.barton@wlusp. com HR MANAGER Paige Bush CORPORATE SECRETARY Maiya Mistry



Loving yourself unapologetically SARAH TYLER VIDEO EDITOR

The magazines and much of social media tells you to show yourself love and to love your body. They then proceed to try and convince you that your body needs to be a specific size with certain curves and muscles in specific places in order to be loveable. They say you’ll love yourself once you reach a certain weight and certain height. Once you achieve a certain appearance then it’s okay to post your pictures and be happy. As someone who has fluctuated drastically in weight and also tried beauty products and diets to fit this societal standard, I have experienced a variety of reactions in response to my changing outer appearance. I am currently the most confident I have ever been in my life and yet have a body that many would consider to be undesirable for themselves. I’m confident not only in my appearance, but my skills and abilities too. I am happy and excited about life.

I feel passionate and my positivity is received well by those I interact with on a regular basis. In the past I’ve gone through periods of weight loss and got compliments of “wow, you look great.” Yes, I do look great, but I looked good before too. The people giving these comments are trying to be supportive; these people care about me. However, these words of encouragement are primarily focused on my appearance, which is finally acceptable. I realized that my inner feelings did not match the praise I received. I wasn’t excited, I was miserable. So then one thing I decided to do was think of myself more positively. With the stresses of university, I have definitely gained weight since my gap year when I last lost a great amount of weight, yet my positive image of myself has only blossomed. Every night since then, I have smiled at myself in the mirror before going to sleep. This little ritual is something to ensure that the last thing I see is myself looking happy. My last look is one of positivity, even if others throughout my day might make comments with a differed vibe. They say to fake it till you make it. Even if I started off unhappy and was originally dis-

appointed in my reflection while forcing a smile at myself, I now check myself out. I still have some doubts periodically, but I fell in love with myself. My body carries me through my extremely busy schedule every day – it gets tired, so I need to rest it, sometimes I need more nutrients or to do some stretching, but I always pull through. Caring for myself is listening to my own needs and doing whatever I can so I am able to share that appreciation of myself and my life with other people. For the first time ever, I have a boyfriend. I am prepared to share myself with someone because I feel that I actually deserve to be loved. It’s a fairly new relationship, but I am incredibly cheerful and not afraid of being a burden. In the words of RuPaul, “if you can’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?” Loving my body no matter what is important and sharing that positivity about myself with others is key to being a fantastic role model for others too. I’m overall mentally strong and strive to be both fierce and fabulous. Being kind to yourself can start with a simple smile, and I can’t wait to show myself more love in the future.

16 •



The in’s and outs of dating someone with mental illness crucial to ensure that you are also taking care of yourself and not losing sight of your own priorities and well-being in order to support your partner. DIANA EDWORTHY OPINION COLUMNIST

While studying at university, balancing school work, clubs, sports, a social life and potentially a part-time job can be incredibly overwhelming. Oftentimes, adding a relationship into the mix can quickly become an additional stressor. When you are already dealing with mental health issues, relationships in university, as well as life in general, can be incredibly intimidating and overwhelming. With 20 per cent of Canadian adults being affected by a mental illness in any given year, it is safe to assume that there is a large group of students at Laurier who are part of that 20 per cent. Taking all of this into consideration, it is important for students to understand what it means to be in a relationship with someone who has a mental illness and how they can help support their partner. First and foremost, the best thing you can do for yourself and your partner when dating someone with a mental illness is to learn as much as you can about the condition — whether it be anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder or any other

It is also important to understand what triggers your partner and what you can do to help them when they are manic, depressed or having a panic attack.


condition. You can learn more about what your partner is going through by way of your own research, or just by having an open and honest conversation with your partner about what they are going through. There’s a vast amount of reliable information online about mental health and how you can help your partner while still taking care of yourself. It is also important to under-

stand what triggers your partner and what you can do to help them when they are manic, depressed or having a panic attack. Triggers are different for every person and could be as simple as not getting a good night’s sleep. Communication is key in order to learn what it is that your partner needs when they are struggling. Knowing whether they need space, someone to talk to or just someone to sit with them will allow you to be

able to help them without causing any more stress or harm. Above all, the greatest asset you can have in a relationship impacted by mental health is patience. These relationships can be complicated and can be a lot of hard work, but if you are patient and empathetic of your partners condition, a happy and successful relationship is completely attainable. When dating someone who is affected by a mental illness, it is

Mental illness does not excuse poor behaviour, and if you feel you are being treated poorly in your relationship you need to speak up for yourself and set appropriate boundaries. Allowing your partner to become dependent on you and catering to their every need is more likely to cause more problems for them and damage your relationship with them. People with mental illnesses can still be happy, funny and loving people and if you are willing to be sensitive and patient with their needs; there is no need to hesitate before getting into a relationship with them.

Can men wear engagement rings?


Engagement rings haven’t exactly changed much over the past 100 years or so besides their prices, styles and the creativity that can be involved with personalizing them. The tradition attached to these rings has stayed relatively the same — and the concept is rooted primarily in a man presenting a woman with a decorated band or Tiffany-style rock to ask for her hand in marriage. Although this tradition has become slightly less heteronormative in recent years, with many gay couples choosing to present each other with rings, the concept of a woman giving her male fiance an engagement ring to wear hasn’t exactly become popularized. It’s odd to think that many men will wear wedding bands, but it hasn’t become socially acceptable or common for them to be given engagement rings from their female partners. Ed Sheeran, everyone’s favourite romantic pop ballad superstar, spoke out last year about the en-

gagement ring he wore before he got married. After he announced his engagement to his childhood sweetheart Cherry Seaborn, he was spotted wearing a ring on the red carpet.

The option should be available and accepted if that’s what a man would like, but it ultimately comes down to personal preference.

When questioned about it he said, “I never saw why men didn’t wear engagement rings, because it’s the same commitment either way. Cherry made it for me herself out of silver clay and I really like it.” We have moved past the original intent behind engagement rings, from ancient times and the early twentieth century, where they stood as symbols for a financial transaction that took place — and the women who wore them were viewed as earned property. It would be reasonable to assume that men could transition into wearing them as well if the in-

tent behind them wasn’t a business transaction, but instead a proclamation of your love and devotion to your partner. Michael Buble also sported an engagement ring before marrying his wife in 2010. With each singer having significant influence over their respectively large fanbases, it’s refreshing to see that this trend could be pushed towards being the norm for future couples. I would personally never be against the idea of giving my future husband a ring that I put thought into choosing and knew he would like, but it would come down to whether or not it was something he wanted. As there are women who may not necessarily want to receive an engagement ring to wear, that would likely be the same for some men. The option should be available and accepted if that’s what a man would like, but it ultimately comes down to personal preference. With jewelry stores and websites like Etsy offering a larger variety of ring options for men specifically, the availability of male engagement rings is becoming more widespread. Regardless of your own personal feelings on the subject, people, regardless of gender, should feel comfortable wearing — or not wearing — the ring of their choice.





Being vulnerable in a relationship


Open. Exposed. Vulnerable. What do you associate with these words? It could be pain or fear, maybe spite or hatred for someone who hurt you when you were at your most vulnerable — I know for myself that this used to be the definition that fit best.

In truth, these words describe quite the opposite of hatred. They describe honest love. People will tell you that in order to be loved, you must first love yourself. I’ll respond by saying that you deserve to be loved, regardless of where you’re at in the project of loving yourself, but so does the person loving you. To give them the love they deserve, you have to love yourself first. Being open, exposed and vulnerable in a relationship won’t feel comfortable until you can do it with yourself. The person you

are intimate with deserves what you deserve — honesty and truth, loving touches, kind words and the occasional criticism when they need that push to do better. We spend a lot of the time protecting our feelings from being exposed, from interrogating them, but this is one of the tests of a loving relationship. You deserve to be told when you are doing something hurtful to your friends, family or yourself. Your intimate lover is your best friend, hero and greatest adversary all in one. Love is about openness, because

you have to be willing to expose truths that are weighing you down. It is exposing yourself, either physically or emotionally, to someone and trusting that you’ve formed a bond strong enough to communicate with each other. There is nothing more vulnerable than being a naked soul in front of somebody who you love most. They could turn you away, not give you the appreciation you felt you needed, or betray your trust. The fact of the matter is that relationships are a team sport comprised of individuals. It can be hard to forget that your partner can’t read your mind sometimes, especially when you feel so connected. It’s your duty to each other to give strength when it is needed. For example, if your partner is trying to get in shape but hasn’t been working out, confront them on this goal in a respectful and encouraging way, embodying a supportive role. Remind them of the goal and ask if they’re still committed to it, and why. Maybe they haven’t even noticed they’ve slipped. If your partner is not satisfying you intimately, whether that be physically or emotionally, they deserve to be reminded. Sometimes we assume they’re doing it on purpose when they may be more willing than we know to give us the love we deserve. It’s up to you to think carefully about how things could be im-

proved, and communicate. Maybe your partner disagrees, or maybe they point out that they’ve felt different since something about you changed that you hadn’t notice until now. The beauty of a relationship is that you have an extra set of eyes watching out for you. Of course, if your partner isn’t doing the same for you, this is something to talk to them about as well. We all need to be reminded sometimes. You shouldn’t feel like you’re the only one responsible for maintaining your relationship. Some people think the best thing about a relationship is the honeymoon stage when everything is about your love and nothing can bring you down. While it’s a magical time, the best parts come later. The more you know your intimate best friend, the more comfortable you feel being open — vulnerably exposing deep parts of yourself and knowing that there is enough trust and respect between you for honesty. In an ever more confusing world, the greatest thing somebody can do for you, and you for them in return, is be consistent, and be someone that they know is there to help, criticize, support and confront them when they need it. The privilege and joy of sharing life with an utterly honest individual, and being that person for your partner in return, is the healthiest thing a relationship can have.

Rethinking the problematic concept of virginity ALYSSA DI SABATINO OPINION EDITOR

University is a critical turning point in the process of “growing up” for most students. It’s the first time many students have moved out of their parents house and are living on their own, and have now become surrounded by a bounty of potential opportunities and potential relationships. This taste of freedom is accompanied by quite a bit of social pressure — namely drinking, partying and sexual exploration. Maybe I’m reaching out on a limb here, but it seems as though sometimes your worth as a person or partner becomes connected to your sexual history. Hookup culture in university is prevalent, and your sexual status all of a sudden has the potential to shape how others perceive you. If you’ve ever been asked about your sexual status by someone else, you know that there’s never a perfect answer. If you’re a girl, your virginity or lack thereof has the potential to make you a prude or a “hoe” in the eyes of others. If you’re a boy, being asked garners either respect or embarrassment, depending on your answer. As much as you want to be assured that there is no prejudice associated with your answer, there always is, because of the cultural and social weight that the concept of virginity holds.

By definition, virginity is considered to be a state of existence for a person who has never had sexual intercourse. But it’s important to recognize that the idea of “virginity” is constructed. Historically, a woman who had abstained from sex was considered “pure” and thus, suitable for marriage. The pressure is, in this way, put on women to uphold social expectations, commodifying them in the process.

The expectation of having your virginity is that once you “lose” it, you become intrinsically different.


It holds moral implications because it is often religiously associated. And while virginity no longer has the same legal implications as it did in some societies in the past, the stigma surrounding it has continued to live on. The first act of sexuality by a female is considered to be a personal milestone. The expectation of having your virginity is that once you “lose” it, you become intrinsically different. But virginity is unmeasurable and immaterial, and there is no way to tell if someone is a virgin by physically inspecting them. For women, a loss of virginity

often accompanies “popping your cherry,” or breaking your hymen. But it’s worth pointing out that this is not scientific. Hymens don’t break, but they can stretch, although this stretching can happen from activities other than sex. Besides the myth of female virginity, the concept is still problematic. It is widely understood that the loss of virginity occurs between a man and a woman having “traditional” intercourse for the first time. But this enforces heteronormativity and erases other forms of sexual expression. Does this mean

that non-heterosexual sex doesn’t “count”? No, but the concept of virginity as it stands acts to overlook these other forms of sexuality. And the idea of virginal pureness puts immense pressure on those who have been sexually assaulted. The unwanted actions of others do not dictate purity or worth. This is how the idea of virginity becomes muddled. By speaking of virginity as something tangible that can be given or taken, it allows the concept to determine our sexual worth, which is incredibly objectifying. Remaining a virgin or losing

your virginity is ultimately up to you. Everyone should be allowed to feel comfortable with their body, whether or not they have had sex. It’s up to you whether you consider your “intimate” experiences to be intimate or altering in the first place. As long as your sexual encounters are consented to and enjoyable, there’s no reason that keeping or losing your virginity needs to hold any weight at all, unless you want it to. Whether your sexual experience is non-existent, limited or abundant, it doesn’t determine your worth.

18 •





Raines adds to medal count at OUA championships PRANAV DESAI SPORTS EDITOR

The Wilfrid Laurier University Golden Hawk swimming teams competed at the 2019 OUA Swimming Championships this past weekend. The championships began on Feb. 7 and ended on Feb. 9. It was a memorable tournament for two Hawks in particular: Jasmine Raines and Kenney Tam. Kenney Tam made history as he became the first Golden Hawk men’s swimmer to win a medal at the OUA championships since 2008, ending an 11-year drought. Tam picked up a bronze medal in the 200-meter breaststroke race, finishing with a time of two minutes and 18.39 seconds. On the women’s side of things, it was a similar story for the purple and gold as Jasmine Raines continued her dominance over the competition. Raines won the gold medal in the 100-meter and 200-meter breaststroke races on Thursday and Friday, respectively. The Kitchener native’s medal count continues to rise, as she now boasts a staggering total of six medals in her career at the OUA championships. “The more success you have, the more you want to keep improving your performance and keep doing


better. I think that the more you reach your goals, the more you set goals higher and ahead of yourself. It just keeps pushing you further and further and makes you keep wanting to achieve more,” Raines said.

Raines is now in her third year at Laurier and although she makes it look easy every time she’s in a race, her success comes down to the amount of effort she puts into her craft. “It definitely does come back to

what you put in is what you get out of it. Everybody works hard and puts in a lot of effort, but I think it’s [about] what you set out for yourself. If you really want to achieve something, then you’ll work and work until you reach the goals you

have set for yourself,” she said. For Raines, five of the six OUA championship medals in her career are gold, while one is silver. Along with the hard work, the third-year star also makes sure she sets specific goals before competing in a tournament. “I usually set goals for myself [before tournaments], whether that is to win or to get a certain time. But there is always some kind of goal that you are working towards. There’s always a target that I want to accomplish at whatever meet that I’m competing in.” Raines’ spectacular performance at the OUA championships has once again qualified her for the U-Sports Swimming National Championships, which begin on Feb. 21. Raines won a bronze medal at last year’s national championships, becoming the first Golden Hawk in 13 years to accomplish that feat. Going into this year’s tournament, Raines’ goals are similar to last year. “I’d like to have a similar performance to last year. I’d love to win a medal again. I think my biggest goals at this moment are to achieve my best times. I’ve written down some times and hung them on my wall and every day I look at that and say ‘that’s what I want to do at this competition,’” Raines said.


Playoffs on the horizon for the Golden Hawks JOSEPH DEFILIPPIS STAFF WRITER

After a tough start to the Wilfrid Laurier University men’s hockey team regular season and only one win through their first eight games, talk of a playoff appearance at the time seemed very far-fetched. However, thanks to hard work, perseverance and a little bit of luck, the team was able to turn around their fortune and earn a playoff spot in the OUA West division. After the poor start, the Golden Hawks managed a record of 12-7-1 the rest of the way, earning them a season ending record of 13-141, good enough for sixth in their division. “For us it was just a matter of not giving up, especially early in the season,” head coach Greg Puhalski said. “We were actually playing some good hockey and weren’t really getting rewarded for it with wins.” “Sometimes it’ll just even itself out. At times here in the second half we’ve won some games we maybe didn’t deserve to win.” Laurier will matchup against Western in round one of the OUA playoffs, a team that the Golden Hawks beat in three of four regular season meetings. “The strength that we are going

to have to rely upon is really playing as a unit, as a real team that functions well together.” “You have to have some good special teams [and] obviously goaltending is another important factor. [All that] combined with a real competitive nature of your team.” The OUA playoffs are a tough beast to tackle, with the first three rounds, before the Queen’s Cup championship game being played in quick succession.

All said and done, we’ve given ourselves the chance come playoff time to do ourselves some favours and do some damage. -Greg Puhalski, Laurier men’s varsity hockey head coach

Due to its nature, it often ends up being the most battle tested teams that make the deepest runs in the postseason. “We’ve had a lot of injuries here

and after Christmas we’ve played a lot of game short-handed and it has made it tough. So we’ve battled through some adversity.” As a by-product of the injuries that coach Puhalski mentioned, it caused Laurier to have to ice 26 skaters and four goalies during the season, with only five of those skaters appearing in all 28 of the team’s games. Fourth year winger Christian Mroczkowski led the team in scoring with 19 points in 24 games, but it was largely the depth of Laurier that really helped push the team into a good playoff seeding. 12 different skaters registered at least 10 points on the season, while seven players scored at least five goals. Furthermore, 23 Golden Hawks found the back of the net at least once during the year. “Your one-on-ones, the little plays you do as far as breaking the puck out, those types of things that you work all season long on are real important come playoff time.” Despite the ups and downs that the season has brought, Puhalski knows that the team has to simply focus on the task at hand. “All said and done, we’ve given ourselves the chance come playoff time to do ourselves some favours and do some damage.”






New coach, new regime, a team in progress. This is always a storyline that people follow in sports, especially when that new coach is from a winning background like coach Kelly Paton of the Laurier Golden Hawks’ women’s hockey team. Having come from leading the Western Mustangs the last two seasons, putting together a 39-19 record, regular season and playoffs

combined, in addition to winning the OUA title and taking silver in the U Sports national title game, this is a different situation for coach Paton as she tries to create a culture shift for this program. With another trying season having come and gone, with their final game of the season being against crosstown rivals Waterloo Warriors and the Golden Hawks having a 5-18 (1 OTL) record, the understanding of progression being a process can be tough.


“I’d say it was a bit of a rollercoaster in the sense that we peaked at certain times and I think we fell off a little bit in terms of recognizing what details are important. I’d say it was interesting to transition, to get the most out of the potential of this group, and I think at moments we showed that and then there were moments where we felt like we could’ve done things differently to achieve better results,” coach Paton said. The next bridge that coach Paton

gets to cross, which provides hope, is recruiting season — she did not really get one last year having been hired in the summer. Shifts with new coaches are usually witnessed during a time when they get to leave their imprint on a team. “Recruiting is going to play a key role. I think making sure we spend the right time identifying players that have skill but also the right character where they’re really committed to the opportunity, and making sure they’re staying invested and improve their skill over a four-year period. If we do that well, then I think the culture will just shift naturally based on personnel,” coach Paton said. “For the girls that are in the program, outlining what needs to change in terms of how they handle themselves day-to-day so that we could continue to achieve and hopefully make a run for the playoffs next season.” Currently on pace to finish second to last in the OUA (having been last the last two years), expectations are set higher than most would assume of a team with that kind of a record in terms of playoffs. With the resume and background she has, there is something to be said for her being capable of having that type of confidence. It won’t be the first time it is seen at Laurier either, as coach Faulds turned the football program around and coach Serresse has turned the men’s basketball team into a nationally ranked team. The second year is always most important to being able to push towards new heights in such a

process. For now, this was a season of understanding how things could work.

... we’re trying to establish a culture where there is more accountability and more investment in terms of the whole process. -Kelly Paton, Laurier women’s varsity hockey head coach

“I think overall, it’s been a good year for everybody to learn in a new environment and make some necessary adjustments to achieve more competitive results on the ice. I do think we put a pretty good effort into making sure that we stayed competitive most games and one of our challenges as a group this year was scoring. I think that’s what prevented us from getting a different result when the third period was done.” “Overall, it was a good adjustment for everybody. I think for me it was trying to get to know the players, and for the players, try to take leadership from a different coach definitely had its own set of challenges but I think overall, we’re happy. We’re trying to establish a culture where there is more accountability and more investment in terms of the whole process.”

Improving on and off the court OLIVIA JONES STAFF WRITER


With midterm season among us, Rachel Woodburn is going from the classroom to the court as she balances studying and writing midterms, while being a third year guard for the Wilfrid Laurier University women’s basketball team. This week Woodburn and the rest of the Golden Hawks face their final two games of the regular season before heading in the OUA playoffs. Woodburn began playing basketball in grade six in her hometown of Ajax, ON. It was shortly after attending a sports camp that she fell in love with the game. With a little encouragement from a friend she tried out for her local rep team, and thus began Woodburn’s basketball career. “I like the competitiveness of [basketball], I’m a very competitive person so like I think it’s a good way to keep that competitiveness contained in a place where it’s appropriate.” There is no doubt that Woodburn brings a fierce hustle while on the court as she always comes ready to play her best. During the 2016/17 season Woodburn was named Team Rookie of the Year, and also made the OUA Women’s Basketball All-Rookie team. Two weeks ago, she was named Athlete of the Week following

the best game of her career as a Golden Hawk. Woodburn put up 21 points, seven rebounds and four assists during the double overtime game that ended in a 59-58 loss against the University of Waterloo. “When we played Waterloo it was a really tough loss, but we hit some big shots and I feel like with those big shots we were all really united,” said Woodburn. Those big shots included an assist on a basket in overtime that tied up the game, and knocking down a three point shot in double overtime. Friday night the Golden Hawks have the chance to redeem themselves against the Waterloo Warriors. Woodburn is hoping that her team stays aggressive, tries their best, and works their hardest to close with the win this time around. Positivity with her teammates is something Woodburn says comes naturally to her, especially in her role as a third-year teammate. She is one of the oldest players on this very young team, but she shared that this leadership role has helped her to grow as a player and hold accountability throughout the season. “Basketball has taught me a lot of things like self-discipline, how to be a good team player, how to work with groups and how to manage my time effectively.” When asked about what it

means to represent as a Golden Hawk, Woodburn said she feels honoured. “I came at a young age and got to watch other players play, so I feel like getting to play it is kind of like an honor, to play behind other people who have been so successful.” Woodburn mentioned the likes of recent graduate Nicole Morrison, an OUA Women’s Basketball First and Second Team All-Star, President’s Award Recipient, and 2017/18 Team Most Valuable Player. She also mentioned Kaitlyn Scheck, current assistant coach, an OUA Women’s Basketball Second Team All-Star, 2016-17 Team Most Valuable Player, and 2012/2013 Team Rookie of the Year. “I feel honoured to even go on the court and represent a school that has had so many great players.” With a fire in her soul Woodburn will continue to hustle and bring her competitive spirit onto the court during these final two games of the regular season and as the Hawks enter the playoffs. The final home game of the regular season is Friday, Feb. 12 at the Athletic Complex Gym against the Waterloo Warriors. Tip-off for the women is at 6 p.m. and men tip-off at 8 p.m. The Golden Hawks then play their final away game of the regular season against the Guelph Gryphons on Sat. Feb. 16.



Cord Picks: Best Sports Memories The Cord staff reflects on the influence of family and love on sports

Sadman Sakib Rahman/Creative Director This is a story from Valentine’s Day in 2015. We had a tournament scheduled for Valentine’s Day. My girlfriend at the time didn’t mind that I would have to spend the whole day at the park playing with my friends because I promised to take her out to lunch. We had a big game before lunch against the team that was the favourite to win the tournament. Everyone on my team kind of knew we weren’t going to be able to beat those freaks but we wanted to give it our best. After the game I was supposed to meet my girlfriend outside the park. But my girlfriend decided to surprise me by showing up early and cheering for me during the game. I was one of those guys whose partner showed up to his game since it was Valentine’s Day. I was feeling good and I wasn’t going to go home without doing my best to impress her. The stakes were higher than ever for me and I eventually let the pressure get to me by taking too many shots which ultimately made us lose the game, but my girlfriend was still happy because of a few exciting plays that I was able to make which led to us eating waffles for lunch and celebrating Valentine’s Day in perfect fashion.

Alyssa Di Sabatino/Opinion Editor Growing up, I spent multiple nights a week watching my younger brother play sports. From basketball, to rugby, football and more, there isn’t a single sport he hasn’t tried and succeeded at. It used to be such a drag having to go to all my brother’s games when I knew I could be at home watching TV, instead spending my nights in cold, dark hockey arenas, or finding obscure ways to entertain myself in the bleachers at his soccer games. But I found that, even once I got older and was allowed to stay at home by myself, I would still make an effort to go to as many of my brother’s games as possible. Eventually my boredom turned into excitement when watching him, and my disregard turned into respect for his natural athleticism. Now, I feel a great sense of pride being able to watch and support my brother at his games. Every year I look forward to reading week because I know I’ll get to watch my brother play in his basketball city finals. I’m sure most people with siblings can relate — I don’t always get along with my brother. But regardless of where we stand with each other in the moment, I will always be there to love and support my brother on and off the field.

Hayley McGoldrick/News Editor My dad was always my coach growing up, starting with my first year of all-star soccer at eight years old, coaching me until I was eighteen and also coaching me during my seven years of basketball. I was always annoyed with it because it always seemed like he was picking on me constantly calling me out. I would get passed over for awards. I always had to work twice as hard to prove I was a good player and wasn’t just on the team because my dad was the coach. We won our soccer league once and two cups, we won basketball provincials twice and many tournaments in between. My dad is my best friend for many reasons, but mostly because he’s my biggest fan. He pushed me because he knew I could do better, he knew I was a leader and wanted me to act accordingly; he wanted only the best for me. Looking back, I wish I would’ve realized at 14 that all that screaming to run faster or hustle harder was from a place of love. I wouldn’t take back any of those 6 a.m. car rides to tournaments for the world. All those years fostered the greatest friendship I’ll ever have.

#1 Fan

Pranav Desai/Sports Editor My dad is the biggest reason behind my passion for sports. He was extremely athletic during his childhood and he took part in as many sports as possible when he was in school. His athletic mindset never wore off and even after I was born, he was obsessed with playing as many sports as possible with me. Although I did not turn out to be nearly as talented at athletics as him, I still enjoyed playing sports with my friends and with my dad because of how much joy it brought to him. My dad has also taught me how to swim. Now that I’m focusing on university and he’s way past his athletic peak, we do not get to spend as much time as we did in the past playing sports together, so we make up for it by watching as many sports games as we can on T.V. Although it isn’t the same as it was in the past, we still have a great time watching the games and our relationship has only gotten stronger through watching and playing sports together.


Profile for The Cord

The Cord Feb. 13, 2019  

The Cord Feb. 13, 2019  

Profile for thecord