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Wednesday, January 28, 2008

Volume 105 No. 14

Blue Devils Put Bobcats on Ice

Men’s Basketball Improves to 5-4 in the NEC Kyle Dorau Sports editor

nathan mitChell

arizona Daily Wildcat | university arizona

Detrick Gymnasium had not seen an atmosphere as intense as Saturday’s CCSU vs. Quinnipiac men’s basketball tilt since the 2007 NEC Championship Game. In keeping with the flow of that particular contest, the Blue Devils were able to overcome a tough first half to defeat the in-state rival. Marcus Palmer’s double-double helped power Central past the Bobcats, 59-55. “We survived,” said a relieved CCSU Head Coach Howie Dickenman. “I think that might be an accurate description of that game.” Central, who led by as many as 11 in the second half, were unable to shake a persistent Quinnipiac team. Given the proximity between the two schools, the contrast between the private and public nature of each university, and the history between the two teams, the anticipation for this game was already built long before tipoff. Last year when Quinnipiac invaded Detrick, DeMario Anderson hit a half-court three pointer to break the hearts of the Blue Devils. “This was an important game for us,” said Palmer, who led the Blue Devil scorers with 16 points, chipping in 10 rebounds as well. His impact on the game was matched evenly by Quinnipiac’s Justin Rutty, who grabbed a gamehigh of 14 rebounds in addition to 10 points. “There’s no way to keep him off the glass,” said Palmer. “He’s too big.” It seemed whenever the Blue Devils gained momentum, Rutty would take advantage of his 6’7”, 240-pound frame and make a big play for the Bobcats. “Dave Simmons did a very good job on Rutty,” said Dickenman. “He’s a tough customer, and I have to think he’s the most improved player in the league,” in reference to the Bobcats’ power forward. CCSU was able to get key contributions from Ken Horton and Robby Ptacek, who each had 10 points. At halftime, Ptacek had played 10 minutes with nothing to show except for an assist and a rebound. In the eight minutes he played in the second half, he was perfect. The freshman guard was 3-3 from the field, including a three-point-

edward Gaug / the recorder

See Mens Basketball Page 6

Welcoming Spring ‘09 Transfer Students matt Kiernan news editor

Transfer students gathered for an orientation social to meet fellow transfer students and have questions answered by various faculty members about the process of entering CCSU including enrolling in classes, payment plans and adjusting to the university smoothly. Associate Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences Dr. Richard Roth and Assistant Dean Mary Horan advised students transferring that although students should enroll in classes for general education requirements and majors, it’s also beneficial to take classes for the fun of it. “Take some courses for fun, not every course you take has to be for your major,” said Roth. Associate Bursar Tara Crescentini explained that information on paying for tuition, financial aid and loans can be found in the Bursars office as well as the benefits of using a Blue Chip Card. “The Blue Chip Card is good because it keeps you from having to carry around cash and you have it all on one card,” Crescentini said. During the semester students may find themselves having trouble with classes they’re taking and could sometimes not do as well as

U. Arizona Grads Turn Technology Into Free Drinks

they feel they should. Places such as the Learning Center in Copernicus Hall give students the opportunity to improve their grades and interact with tutors that can help them have a better understanding of courses. “We get you more engaged in your notetaking to help you do better on your testing,” said Director of the Learning Center Margaret Leake. Various reasons bring students to go to one school first and then transfer to CCSU, although the big reasons are usually the advancement of academics and the benefit of saving money. Community colleges often don’t have the majors or advanced fields of education that a university has. Community colleges are often useful during the first two years of college because students are able to get general education requirements done while paying a cheaper tuition. “They decided it would be more economical to go to community college. I think transfers are more focused than first-years,” said Director of Career Services Patricia Deloy. “Central has a wonderful array of majors.” Studying abroad can be an experience that looks great on applications and something See Transfer Students Page 2

(UWIRE) – Alumni of the University of Arizona Eller College of Management have created a business that provides cheap alcohol to Facebook users and a good marketing tactic for local bars. Ed De La Motte, co-creator of the BarTab Facebook application, said it allows users to buy drinks at local bars for $1 and gift them to friends via the social networking Web site Facebook without ever leaving their home. Users add the application, put money on a tab, choose a friend, choose a bar, choose a drink and then send the virtual drink to a friend. They can then send the drink to a cell phone via text message and redeem it at the chosen bar, De La Motte said. He said there are 30 participating bars in Arizona and plans of branching out to California are already in the works. Last Saturday night co-founders Nick Stewart, Matt Smith and De La Motte put on a promotional event at The Auld Dubliner. “It is the hot new version of the credit card,” De La Motte said. “Tonight’s goal is to show people how to use it.” The bar contained all the same things you would expect to find on a Saturday night: music, laughter, minimal breathing room and alcohol. De La Motte said when it came time to pay the tab the difference was the lower bills. “I think it’s a great idea. It takes a conceptual idea that Facebook has lost and makes it practical,” said Jeff Shaw, an entrepreneurial senior and BarTab intern. “It increases the social aspects of living on campus.” Kelley Bovit, a retail and consumer sciences senior said that the new program would make a major difference in how people view going out to the bar. “People are going to envy those who know about it,” Bovit said. As with all things there is the potential of abuse, De La Motte said. BarTab has shown some responsibility with its attempts to verify age. Facebook users listed as being under 21 years old are unable to add the application, and it asks for date of birth before the See Free Drinks Page 2

This Issue



Women’s Basketball Defeated by Quinnipiac

Page 7

Inauguration 2009 Obama’s First Week in Office

Page 3


hockey takes home a Pair of Wins Blue Devils overcome connecticut College and Montclair State.

Page 6

Catching up With Kiss Kiss Our Lifestyles Editor checks in with the N.Y.-based band.

Page 10


2 THE RECORDER Wednesday, January 28, 2009

the recorder

Student Center 1615 Stanley Street new Britain, Ct 06050 t 860.832.3744 f 860.832.3747 recorder/

editor-in-Chief Melissa Traynor managing editor Peter Collin art Director Geoffrey Lewis associate layout editor Crystal Maher Photo editor Edward Gaug asst. Copy editor Colette Gallacher entertainment editor Jason Cunningham asst. entertainment Michael Walsh Nick Viccione lifestyles editor Karyn Danforth news editor Matt Kiernan asst. news Ariana Valentin Sports editor Kyle Dorau asst. Sports Christopher Boulay opinion editor Marissa Blaszko asst. opinion Shauna Simeone Web editor John Vignali

Staff Steve Packnick P.J. Decoteau Sean Fenwick Mike D’Avino Hale Yalincak Kareem Mohamed Dan Dinunzio


The Recorder is a studentproduced publication of Central Connecticut State University and does not necessarily represent, in whole or in part, the views of CCSU’s administrators, faculty or students. The Recorder articles, photographs and graphics are property of The Recorder and may not be reproduced or published without the written permission from the Editor-in-Chief. The purpose of The Recorder is to approach and define issues of importance to the students of Central Connecticut State University. Meetings for The Recorder are held every Monday night at 7 p.m. in the Blue & White Room in the student center.

Northwestern U. Endowment Loses 20 Percent in Markets

U. Arizona Grads

KirSten Salyer

Daily northwestern | northwestern university

(UWIRE) – Northwestern’s endowment has decreased about 20 percent since it peaked at the end of August, Northwestern University President Henry Bienen said Tuesday. The figure is a rough estimate because NU will not learn the extent of its losses in private equity investments for another month. When these are taken into account, Bienen said the final decline could be up to 25 percent. NU’s endowment, which Bienen said reached $7.3 billion at the end of August, was the 11th largest among national colleges and universities in 2007. Aside from the drastic drop in the endowment’s total, Bienen said the university is also struggling to liquidate the money it still has. “They’re not making profits in these funds, so there’s no money flowing back to us,” Bienen said. NU’s financial troubles have forced changes in spending. The university has opted out of some building projects, including a new information center for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, and cut back on hiring new employees, Bienen said. “We didn’t freeze hiring,” he said. “But both for staff and for faculty we forced a different set of justifications on hiring, and we were extremely reluctant to approve new positions.” Although Bienen said he expects a “big hit on the budget” to come from an increase in the number of students who qualify for financial aid, NU will not retract its guarantee to meet 100 percent of its students’ demonstrated financial need. “According to the formulas we’ve been using, there’s going to be more need,” he said. “We will meet that need.” Despite these concerns, Bienen said NU is in better shape than many comparable universities because a smaller portion of its financial aid budget comes directly from the endowment. For instance, Princeton University’s endowment funds about 80 percent of its financial aid, whereas NU’s only funds around 15 percent. “When the markets imploded so quickly and so deeply, it gave an adjustment problem to places whose current budgets were being funded 40 to 50 percent out of endowment compared to Northwestern,” he said. “We have an easier adjustment.” Looking forward, Bienen said the most difficult issue facing future President Morton Schapiro is the economic climate, although he is not worried that his successor will be unprepared. “We’ve worked it out for him in terms of the budget and what we need to do,” he said. “He’ll come to his own conclusions, obviously, but he’s not going to face a crisis.”

Continued from page 1 application can be added. Also, all drinks can only be redeemed at bars. Melanie Bried, a psychology senior, said that the program also works to correct one major concern users had - the application may let people know where you are going or that you could feel obligated into meeting someone you don’t know. “You have to be friends with someone to buy them a drink so you won’t get any creepers,” Bried said. In addition to its usefulness for local drinkers, De La Motte said that BarTab also functions as a cheap marketing tool for bars. He said that bars will allocate BarTab a certain amount of drinks per month and in turn they receive guaranteed customers and advertise-

ment through online alerts telling users the name of the sponsoring bar. The drinks cost users a fraction of their original price because the bar makes up the rest of the money as part of the trade for the free online advertising, De La Motte said. The average cost of online advertisement in the form of banners is somewhere between $500 and $1000 per day, Stewart said. He said that by using BarTab, bars will substantially decrease their advertising costs while increasing their overall business. “To get a new customer it (usually) costs $36.48 and we do it for 35 cents, so we do it a thousand times better,” Stewart said. Shaw said the first cheap drink will act as a way to bring people into

Transfer Students Continued from page 1

that students can remember for the rest of their lives. As employment is currently on a downturn in the country, studying abroad can give the applicant the extra experience that could get them a job. “It’s a bit scarier, but this is a global economy and this is where the world’s heading,” said Deloy.

Location is a major factor in determining why students choose to come to CCSU over the other state universities in Connecticut. “The location (is the main reason) because the other campuses are further away and here you’re near the malls and Hartford,” said Kimona Spencer, a junior at CCSU.

the bar and that they are unlikely to leave after just one drink. “The free drink got us in here and we’ve bought 10 drinks since,” Shaw said. De La Motte said the team is planning to market the application to several states with eventual plans of reaching the entire country. Their key states are California, Texas, Massachusetts and New York. “If we could get all those by 2010, we would be a huge entity,” De La Motte said. “It really becomes a viral spread.” As part of that future expansion, Stewart said that they could add appetizers and movie tickets to the gift selection. “Literally, the sky is the limit,” Stewart said.

Students were able to meet with academic advisors and discuss what courses they should be taking for their majors and how to get involved on campus. Students who were undecided in a major were helped in finding areas they may be interested in.


THE RECORDER / Wednesday, January 28, 2009 / NEWS

Inauguration 2009 The First Week in Office Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States and spent his first week in office working towards closing of Guantánamo Bay prison, freezing pay for certain White House staff and discussing rejuvenating the economy. The President did, however prepare himself for these responsibilities and reminded the American people at his inauguration. Obama’s inaugural ceremony saw several speeches, musical performances and even a poetry reading, but was defined by his speech, where he acknowledged mounting economic pain and the military challenges that America faces. “Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace,” he said. “Yet, every so often, the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms.”

His address to the crowd of around one million people and many more viewers at home also included a sense of new responsibility and immediacy. In addressing healthcare, restoring a strong economy, the environment, Obama pointed out that all Americans must work for a common good and set aside foolish differences that would hinder the process. He promised that citizens will be able to monitor the people who spend their tax dollars and that the new system will be transparent as officials will deal in the light of day. A call for a mutual promise between government and citizens was another highlight of Obama’s speech. “Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends – honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism – these things are old,” he said. “… They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. “

Guantánamo Bay “American Recovery Closure and Detainee and Reinvestment Plan” Review Obama addressed the nation via his weekly video on Saturday to announce his $825 billion plan to create three to four million jobs over the next few years as well as provide more for individual college student in terms of tax credits. He said that seeing as both parties in Congress are working on this plan, he hopes to have it signed into law on less than a month. In addition to renovating schools and outfitting them with modern labs, classrooms and investing in science fellowships to spark innovation, he said. “We’ll invest more in Pell Grants to make college affordable for seven million more students, provide a $2,500 college tax credit to four million students,” Obama announced.” He is also expecting the nation to generate more energy and learn how to save at the same time by weatherizing buildings to become more efficient.

Obama spent time hours after his inauguration asking for the suspension of trials for terrorists involved in the September 11, 2001 attacks at Guantánamo Bay. On Jan. 22, he signed an executive order that would impose a review of each detainee’s case, and Obama said he will determine whether these individuals should remain in detention. The executive order also calls for the closure of the detention facility as soon as it becomes practical, but within the timetable of one year. In his inaugural speech, the President said that the country will be unyielding in the defense of security and constant in its pursuit of terrorists.

You Didn’t Vote The Time is Now for a God Dan DinunZio

Special to the recorder

JaSon CunninGham entertainment editor

A man like me has very little to believe in, but Barack Obama has provided me with hope. He is an answer for the doubtful, a warrior for the weak and a savior for every man, woman and child who’s feared for the welfare of this country and its people. I was always told hope was something we reached for in the most troubled of times. It starts with the need for change, it’s planted into the pit of our stomachs, and then it grows into something truly beautiful, a belief. I attended the presidential inauguration, not because of its historical significance, but because I wanted to be there when the man I so passionately supported was sworn into office. I wanted to be there because it was almost hard for me to believe it was really going to happen. Throughout the entirety of my trip I was amazed by the amount of street vendors and retail stores alike capitalizing on Obama’s image, words and promise of change. Anything from purses, shoes, shirts, mugs and posters could be purchased to commemorate the inaugural ceremony. I stood out there on Jan. 20, freezing with millions around me, somewhere between the capital building and the Washington Monument. From time to time snowflakes floated down our way. There was an undeniable force filling the hearts of every member of that enormous audience. Everyone’s faith in the continuation of the American dream placed on the shoulders of one man. Most people had signs and apparel so show support, in tears, smiles spread wide to welcome in a different kind of future, one more optimistic than any other since the downward spiral that was quintessential in Obama’s victory to begin with, the Bush administration. Somewhere along the way we transformed what most consider the most awful president in history, George W. Bush, into something even more, an image of evil, a devil. When Obama declared that he intended to run for president he raised eyebrows, when he become the democratic nominee he raised spirits, when he be-

came president of the United States he captured hearts. He became Bush’s opposite, some sort of angel, swooping down to rescue the American people. The truth is, however, regardless of how much you like or dislike our new president, he is only one man. If people intend to believe in Obama and his abilities so adamantly, they must also leave room for disappointment within the warm comfort of his appealing new face and his powerfully delivered promises of a new world. Obama has the weight of the world on his shoulders, plain and simple. It’s a mistake not to lower our extremely high expectations of him. Some people have the deepest faith in this man, to such an extreme level that I’ve seen him become a deity in the form of a commemorative inaugural plate. Imagine walking down the streets of Washington D.C. and seeing street vendors pushing this dining ware with Obama’s image as Christ dying on the cross to countless tourists and locals alike. It’s absolutely disgusting, and that’s all there is to it. Obama does not want to be your God, he wants to lead this country towards what he considers a brighter future. Love Obama all you want. I know I support him with fullest confidence, but realize he has the ability to screw up. He is not allknowing, he is not perfect and be ready for the world to watch closely while this very new and politically young president kicks off his first year in office. As smooth as he is, his pearly white smile doesn’t mean his mouth is clean, his passion and commitment wont reflect everyone’s interests, and no matter how inspiring his message of hope and change is, he will never be the God that some people look for him to be. If anything, our last president thought he could play God to the world, and look at how well that turned out. Who’d want to relive that whole mess again?

Tuesday Jan. 20, was a historical day and unlike anything ever seen before. The Inauguration of the 44th President Barack Hussein Obama brought out people of all different ages and races. All across America people watched this man become the first person of African descent to take the most sacred oath and lead as the Commander-in-Chief. The festivities and parades are all done, and now it’s time to get down to business. President Obama has a full plate of problems that he needs to tackle head-on. First and foremost is getting the American economy headed in the right direction. The auto industry that made America what it is today has been severely damaged over the last couple of years. Many of the big banks are struggling and frequently looking to the government for more money to survive. For the financial industry, 2008 was about as close to 1929 as anything ever seen before in history. A repeat of last year’s events could be cataclysmic for everybody and especially the American consumer. Mr. President has asked Congress to get a stimulus package to his desk as soon as possible. The

cost of this package is approaching one trillion dollars. The objective of something that costs such a large sum of money is to create almost four million jobs and provide tax cuts for millions of working Americans. Currently there are two wars going on. President Obama campaigned that he would withdrawal troops from Iraq within 16 months as long as it didn’t jeopardize the mission. Something President Bush was criticized immensely for, Obama and his staff now know they need to get it right the first time around. President Obama has spoken openly that he wants to focus on stabilizing Afghanistan and resurgent Taliban. He knows that the main goal since the beginning to find Osama Bin Laden. The man responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks is believed to be hiding in the Middle East. The War on Terror is still a large problem across the world. Keeping Americans safe home and abroad will of course be of top priority. President Obama is one of the youngest Presidents in history and has basically taken center stage across the globe. The American people are looking towards him to revitalize our nation and begin a new era of prosperity. Barack Obama was elected by the American people for a reason. He’s surrounded himself with people who are well experienced and have the credentials to put the country back on track to success. The time is now to start this great endeavor.

4 THE RECORDER Wednesday, January 28, 2009



College newspaper editorials featuring the rising cost of tuition, or the futility of filling out FAFSA forms to try to scrape together tuition money, have been printed since any student, and most faculty members, can remember. And, it seems, with good reason - although the tuitions of state-run schools have been climbing for decades, the wages and salaries graduates earn have been going down just as steadily. But now, with the economy once again front-page news across the world, students are being faced with a new problem. The same young adults that used to bemoan late-night jobs or weekends devoted to work have, instead, found themselves unable to find a job at all. According to the Hartford Courant, unemployment in Connecticut has risen to at least 7.1 percent this month, and is predicted to continue increasing. Work places have not only almost completely stopped hiring (or, as in the case of the CSU system, have totally frozen hiring), but have begun firing and laying off workers.

The market, it seems, is effecting Central students harder than students at other schools, where voluntary unemployment for the sake of focusing on education is not only an option but a norm. As most CCSU students know, even though our financial aid may be determined by our parents’ income, our financial situation is often not. Students who have to work in order to pay rent, car insurance and tuition bills are finding themselves blocked out of unskilled or semiskilled jobs, from retail to bartending, because they haven’t built a resume capable of competing with career waiters or laid off assistant managers. A vacuum of union jobs in the state - with the closing of both union hotels in Hartford, as well as scores of trained workers under the UE or AFL-CIO unable to find jobs - paying for college may mean juggling multiple underpaying jobs. At least, if a student can find them. So what are we expected to do? Continue on fighting to build our resumes and hope we can find a job after college? Resort to lending our bodies to science, or selling our sperm to clinics? Or, better yet - dancing at the Gold Club while selling Adderall between classes?

Retrospective: Thanks, Bush mariSSa BlaSZKo opinion editor

Shauna Simone

asst. opinon editor

For many, if not most Central students, the inauguration of President Barack Obama not only signified a beginning, but an end. Whether George W. Bush’s legacy will be an epic era or an epic error remains open to debate, but for most students who were too young to remember much of Bill Clinton’s presidency, W’s eight years were a political awakening. For some, the prevention of another attack on the homeland since September 11, 2001 showed the benefits of an aggressive foreign policy strategy. For others, the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq under false pretenses showed us a government that would lie to its people to serve the interest of oil company execs. Either way, the Bush administration inspired and ultimately birthed everyone from politicians and bureaucrats to community organizers and radicals. The world is a different place than it was eight years ago – and not only in a post-9/11 way. When Bush first took office, the iPod hadn’t yet been invented. Voters didn’t flinch at

the word “recount” and liberals didn’t roll their eyes at the thought of Alaska. Green was just a color, not a way of life. Can students even remember a time where people didn’t know where Fallujah is? But many other dramatic changes have occurred from Capitol Hill to Silicone Valley, and the following list was generated to help refresh memories of a time before W. -Tom Cruise was cool (before he freaked out on national TV) -Governor Rowland was still respected -The Red Sox hadn’t won a World Series since 1918. -Mac hadn’t sold a computer since 1990. (Kidding. Maybe.) -People had heard of Destiny’s Child, but not Beyonce -Two words: Thong Song. -American Idol wasn’t around to get higher ratings than the state of the union address -You could bring nail clippers on a plane -There was no such thing as MySpace or Facebook -Sadaam Hussein was alive and in power -Al Gore was a politician, not an academy-award winner

As students, now is not the time to close our eyes and hope for the best. Getting to know our political surroundings, both on and off campus, is not only becoming increasingly important but a matter of survival. This, it should be noted, doesn’t necessarily mean paying attention to Wall Street so we can vote confidently in the next election, or switching to a business major to start a hedge fund while stocks are low. On campus alone the possibilities exist for students to find help. The annual budget of the Student Government Association is more than most students would guess - and is funded by dues paid as part of our semester bill anyway. Different clubs offer opportunities to students that they wouldn’t necessarily expect.. For students more worried about gaining a competitive edge in a stagnant job market, different majors - from marketing to biology have clubs geared toward giving students experience working in and around the field. Last summer, students in the Progressive Student Alliance and Youth for Socialist Action went to Cleveland for a National Assembly against the

Iraq and Afghanistan wars; this semester, the College Republicans are going to DC to see notable GOP members, including Gov. Sarah Palin, speak. There are free food events on campus constantly; merely being a student entitles us to all sorts of random discounts that we just need to ask for. Now, if only we could find the time between jobs and classes to find such opportunities, the CCSU student body would be in business.

Have you had problems setting aside time for clubs? Send your thoughts to ccsurecorder@gmail. com

Cashing in on the New President His Message Sadly Translates to Money tonya malinoWSKi Staff Writer

Despite the current economic hardships, more Americans than ever are forking over their hard-earned paper for the President Barack Obama collectible of their choice, and there is no shortage of options. With everything from run-of-the-mill commemorative plates, to Obama-shaped dildos, (available in two colors at there’s little room for doubt that Obama has become the most marketed President in history. Hennessey even came out with a “44” edition in celebration of the 44th President; the perfect gift for the cognac connoisseur who also enjoys extreme racial stereotypes. Unless of course there is Barack Obama Malt Liquor out there somewhere. Perhaps some people really believe that their Yes We Can Opener will actually be worth something in 20 years, or perhaps the Starbucks brand liberals just want to show off their racial diversity. Either way, there is a disheartening reality behind the mass quantity of Obama junk being hocked on Inauguration Day. The truth of this merchandising fiasco is that a pivotal moment in American history, one that cannot be understated in its significance, is being mocked by greed and trivial merchandising. The amount of political crap being advertised is almost frightening. What should be an

opportunity for every citizen to become more informed and aware has instead been turned into a novelty act. If the new President has any clue how much profit is being made by the Obama Edition Nike Air Force Ones, he should jump on board the bobblehead express or have his daughters start hand-painting some plates. In fact, he could cut taxes significantly and make up for the deficit in revenue from T-shirts with his face on them. That iconic, brooding face is quickly becoming more recognizable than Jesus. This is in part due to the obvious fact that he is the first African-American President, but more so than a race issue, Americans are rejoicing the end of the Bush era. Those eight years were the equivalent of a mentally abusive relationship with an idiot who stole all your money and hogged the couch. But it’s not just about suckling at the Change teet for the next four years. At a time where our generation is more involved than ever, it is our responsibility to keep the momentum going instead of just wearing a “party like a Barack star” T-shirt and calling it a day. Global economic, political and social structures are shifting rapidly under our feet, so now more than ever, it’s time to put down your inspirational-noun coffee mug and actually stand for something.


THE RECORDER / Wednesday, January 28, 2009 / OPINION

Rush: A Man Misunderstood Shauna Simone Opinion Editor

Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh is the cause for media outrage once again – this time, for stating his hopes that President Barack Obama will fail during his presidency. Like most of the controversies generated about Limbaugh, his comments were taken out of context and strewn across headlines without further explanation. It is true that Limbaugh stated, “I hope he fails” when referring to Obama on his Jan. 16 broadcast. But after delving into the rest of the transcript, his statement is something that many conservative leaning Americans would back up. Many of the media outlets that reported on this story, such as CNN and News Blaze, say that Limbaugh’s statement is unpatriotic. Robert Paul Reyes wrote, “When Limbaugh declares that he hopes Obama fails, he’s really saying that he hopes America fails… A true patriot, regardless if he is a Democrat or a Republican will fervently pray and hope that Obama will succeed”. Well is that a change in attitude from the last eight years? Senator Harry Reid (D, Nev.) concluded that the surge failed and the war lost before the troop surge even started. Unfortunately, Senator Reid must have forgotten to “fervently pray and hope” for the success of Bush’s policies. Even after the surge resulted in less violence in Iraq, not all democrats were convinced of Bush’s success. Democrat Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi refused to give Bush credit. Instead she attributed the decrease in violence to the actions of the Iranian government. “Some of the success of the surge is that the goodwill of the Iranians – they decided in Basra when the fighting would end, they negotiated that cessation of hostilities,” she said.

Geoffrey Lewis / The Recorder

Well, thank God for Iranian diplomacy. I guess the surge that occurred at the same time was just a coincidence. The hope for Bush’s policies to fail runs deeper than just among democrat officials. Fox News conducted an opinion poll in August of 2006 where citizens from the Democrat Party were asked if they would like to see Bush succeed. Shockingly, only 40 percent of Democrats replied yes to this statement. Where was the media at this time declaring that the majority of democrats were un-American? Regardless of the hypocrisy on the part of the democrats who are

criticizing Limbaugh, Rush’s comments are far from unpatriotic. He is defending conservative principles that have helped to make this country great. Limbaugh is not hoping Obama fails along with the country. Instead, he believes that the country will fail if Obama succeeds in implementing his collectivist agenda. Limbaugh explains himself by saying that Obama’s policies include the “absorption of as much of the private sector by the US government as possible, from the banking business, to the mortgage industry, the automobile business, to health care”. If these policies succeed in being implemented, America will

receive change just as Obama promised. This change is not what conservatives, such as Limbaugh, believe will make this country great. In a follow-up interview Limbaugh appeared on Sean Hannity’s show “Hannity” and defended his original statement. “If he gets nationalized health care, I mean, it’s over, Sean. We’re never going to roll that back. That’s the end of America as we have known it, because that’s then going to set the stage for everything being government-owned, operated or provided,” he said. “Why would I want that to

succeed? I don’t believe in that. I know that’s not how this country is going to be great in the future; it’s not what made this country great. So I shamelessly say, ‘No! I want him to fail.’” As college students we should be able to appreciate the values that Rush and many conservatives are trying to promote. Freedom from government means more independence. As many CCSU students are reveling at the newfound freedom from our parents’ authority, we must be careful not to replace mom and dad with big brother.

Atheist Slogans Grace London Buses Colette Gallacher Asst. Copy Editor

In a world surrounded by constant battles over religion, it is refreshing to see a new generation of people who essentially have no use for religion. Throughout London and much of the United Kingdom, the transport systems are being taken over by atheist campaigners advocating that “there is probably no God, now stop worrying and enjoy your life.” This Atheist Bus Campaign should be a refreshing change from the constant harassment of Christianity, whose slogans and ideologies branded across much of London promote that a lack of belief will send a person to hell and shroud their lives in misery. Ariane Sherine, the brains behind the four-week campaign, had become so frustrated that commuters across London were continually being hounded to believe in one faith or another that she decided to take matters into her own hands. Since Jan. 6, commuters across the UK have hopefully borne a smile or two as they go to and from work. Sherine hopes that the slogan will help commuters realize that religion is not that main focus of life, will allow commuters openly express their ideas about religion. “I am very glad that we live in a country where people have the freedom to believe in whatever they want,” Sherine told the Daily Mail, at the launch of the campaign in London.

Ariane Sherine has gained much support from professor and atheist supporter, Richard Dawkins who has significantly help fund the advertisements and Hanne Stinson, the Chief Executive of the British Humanist Association. Stinson believes that the slogan will help people realize that it is okay not to be religious. Sherine and her supporters believe that people can live a happy, enjoyable and rewarding life without religion. The past few years have seen wars on terror and weapons of mass destruction fought by the Western World, but no matter if you are Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative, you can’t help but notice the overshadowing of the wars by religion and faith. The campaign by Sherine could be a step in the right direction. No one truly knows what happens after death, and no one can be certain there are any forms of higher power or heaven and hell. As far as science can prove, a person has one chance to live his or her life, with death being the only truly certain thing in life. Should we really be spending our one chance at life waging wars over a religion that has not been proven to be true? Or should we toy with the possibility of enjoying the real things in life – the closeness of friends, the love of a family and the belief that dreams in the real world can come true. Maybe, in the words of Sherine, we should just “stop worrying and enjoy life.”


6 THE RECORDER Wednesday, January 28, 2009

CCSU Hockey Takes Home a Pair of Wins

Netminder Craig Height stops the shot with a kick-save. Kyle Dorau Sports Editor

Central Connecticut State University ice hockey, took a pair of victories this past weekend at Newington Arena, dispatching Connecticut College 6-2 on Friday and Montclair State University 4-2 on Saturday. The weekend sweep began on Friday as the Blue Devils took advantage of a three-goal second period to defeat the Conn. College

Edward Gaug / The Recorder

Camels. Despite the victory, Head Coach Jim Mallia was far from impressed with his team’s effort. “Sloppy,” he said, summing up the game in a single word. “It was just one of those games I just wanted to get through.” It was a game reminiscent of the devastating loss to Division III, Southern Connecticut State University. Between the mismatching uniforms, short bench and a couple impressive saves early on by their net minder, one cannot

Men’s Basketball

Senior Marcus Palmer tallies his third double-double of the season.

the year. “When we get going, other guys get going.” The DiClemente brothers chipped in for a total of seven points, registering three goals and four assists as a winger tandem. Central took the lead for good in the second period, when Mike DiClemente scored on a corner feed from Dabkowski to make it 3-2. The tally would stand up as DiClemente’s teamleading fourth game-winner of the season.

See CCSU Hockey Page 7

Super Bowl Predictions

Edward Gaug / The Recorder

Continued from page 1 er, and drained all three shots he earned at the foul line. “Everybody just stepped up their game, and it worked out for us,” said Ptacek. Coach Dickenman had noticed the freshman’s lack of production in the first half, and was quick to challenge him. “I gotta give kudos to Robby Ptacek in the second half,” said the Central Head Coach. “He had a major league putback, made the threepoint play and made a big three for us. I’m pleased with how he responded.” Joe Seymore struggled to find his shooting touch, managing just six points, while going 0-5 from beyond the arc. He was still a key contributor, snagging seven rebounds within afternoon. David Simmons also performed well for the Blue Devils, going 4-4 from the field. The sophomore was often charged with the difficult task of guarding the physically imposing Rutty. The play of the game was a three-man effort for Central. With five mintues remaining

blame Mallia for having flashbacks to a disastrous SCSU game. Enter the top line for CCSU, known as the “Blue Line”; the offensive combination of team co-captain Joe Dabkowski, Rob and Mike DiClemente once again carried the Blue Devils. Dabkowski led the way with two goals and two assists. “We just stick to our game plan, work hard and hopefully other guys will feed off of it,” said Dabkowski, the defending Super East player of

in the second half and the Blue Devils up by six, Marcus Palmer stole the ball from the Quinnipiac guard James Johnson, sent a high lob pass over the shoulder of Shemik Thompson, who dished to Simmons for the layup and the foul. Simmons converted the free throw to extend the lead to nine and keep the crowd of 3,064 in the game. Both teams struggled to find offense early in the game, shooting below 30 percent in the first half. The second half saw Central kick it up a notch, shooting over 52 percent from the floor, and 13 of 14 free throws. “Our free-throw shooting saved us,” said Dickenman. Central improves to 5-4 in the NEC, and 9-10 overall with the win. The Bobcats fall to 4-5 in-conference, with an 8-11 overall record. Men’s basketball returns to action on the road at Wagner on Thursday. Game time is 7 p.m. and all the action can be heard locally on ESPN Radio 1410 or at

Peter Collin Managing Editor

Kyle Dorau Sports Editor

Favorite Team: Philadelphia Eagles Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers – 31-28 No I am not picking the Steelers because the Cardinals beat my beloved Eagles, I’m picking them because that defense is ridiculous and Big Ben won’t have any jitters this time around though, Larry Fitzgerald is a beast and is the reason the game will be close.

Favorite Team: Miami Dolphins Pick: Arizona Cardinals – 27-13 I’m picking the Cardinals (because you don’t argue with Howie) and final score 2713.

Nick Viccione Asst. Entertainment Editor

Favorite Team: New York Giants Pick: Arizona Cardinals – 21-20 This year’s Super Bowl should be another great matchup with both teams playing their best football all season. Kurt Warner may be playing for a spot in the Hall of Fame if this season hasn’t already solidified his position. If the Cardinals offense can continue its tear, not even Troy Polamalu will be able to save the Steelers’ defense. The matchup appears to be very even and this game should have an exciting finish just like last year’s game. Cards win it late and Fitzgerald is the MVP.

Favorite Team: Kansas City Chiefs Pick: Arizona Cardinals – 34-30 Now, let me set the record straight. My entire family is Pittsburgh Steelers fans, if the Kansas City Chiefs ever got retracted from the NFL, I would be a Pittsburgh Steelers fan by default. However, this season has been too much of a Cinderella season for the Arizona Cardinals and I feel as if they will ride that emotion into the Super Bowl, and once and for all silence their critics. Either that or they’ll get their butts kicked. You know, one or the other. Ed Gaug Photo Editor Favorite Team: New England Patriots Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers – 35-17 While the Cardinals have shown they are for real after winning three straight playoff games, the Steelers are the obvious pick. With their shut down defense, the Steelers will easily handle Kurt Warner and Larry Fitzgerald and win Super Bowl XLIII.

Christopher Boulay Asst. Sports Editor

Mike DiClemente CCSU Ice Hockey Forward Favorite Team: New England Patriots Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers – 23-20 Charlie Hickey CCSU Baseball Head Coach Favorite Team: Miami Dolphins Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers – 31-14 Howie Dickenman CCSU Basketball Head Coach Favorite Team: None Pick: Arizona Cardinals – 21-17

THE RECORDER / Januaary 28, 2009 / SPORTS


CCSU Hockey Continued from page 6 With the Camels reeling, Dave Windish took advantage, scoring just nine seconds later on a wrist shot from just inside the blue line, for his third goal of the season. Craig Height got the start in net for Central, earning his fourth victory of the season. On Saturday, CCSU faced Super East opponent Montclair State, and again found themselves in a tough battle early on. Dabkowski opened the scoring halfway through the first period, but the Redhawks responded on the power play shortly thereafter, tying the game at one apiece. Dane Anderson gave Central a 2-1 lead with his second period goal. The Blue Devils had a number of opportunities to put the game away, with Matt Williams stopped on a partial breakaway, and Erich Stoneman ringing a shot off the post, but CCSU just couldn’t bury the chances. Stoneman would get another chance in the third period and con-

verted. He took a quick pass across the crease from Craig Prema and stuffed it in to give Central a 3-1 lead. Minutes later, Prema would be rewarded with a goal, as he took advantage of a rebound on a slapshot from the point. His power-play goal increased the lead to 4-1. Montclair State added a tally with 35.3 seconds left, but ultimately fell to CCSU, 4-2. Carmine Vetrano got the win for Central, his team-leading seventh of the season. Kevin McConnell did not practice last week or play due to injury, but is expected to make his return this weekend against Siena. Eric Blewett took a puck to the kneecap in Saturday’s game and did not return. He is not expected to miss any time. CCSU plays host to Siena on Friday at Newington Arena. Game time is 9 p.m. and all fans are encouraged to wear white in order to have a “white out” effect against the secondranked Saints. The team will travel to UNH on Sunday to take on the Wildcats at 2 p.m.

Edward Gaug / The Recorder

Simeone and Berube Lead Blue Devils at URI Meet

R.J. Simeone won the 500 meters and qualified for both the New England and IC4A meet with a time of 1:05.02, as the Central Connecticut men’s indoor track and field team finished third at the URI Quad Meet on Saturday. Freshman Matt Berube was the other first place finisher for the Blue Devils, recording a distance of 43 feet 6.5 inches in the triple jump. CCSU finished with 24 points as a team, defeated Holy Cross, but fell to New Hampshire and Rhode Island. The Wildcats won the meet with 78 points, while the Rams finished in second place as the hosts, posting a score of 70.

Other top scorers for the Blue Devils were seniors Sean Smith, Clinton DePaolo and Matthew Whalen. Smith took home second in the 200 meters recording a time of 50.78 seconds. DePaolo was fourth in the 55-meter hurdles, while Whalen finished third in the 800 meter run. DePaolo recorded a time of 8.29 seconds and Whalen’s time was 1:57.87. Sophomore Robert Weston placed fourth in the one mile run with a time of 4:31.85. Freshman Tristan Roberts finished right behind Berube in the triple jump, taking second place with a distance of 42 feet 10.25 inches. Central Connecticut will next be competing at the Boston Indoor Games on Friday January 30.

Blue Devils’ Comeback Falls Short Kyle Dorau Sports Editor

In a season of rebirth and excitement, the Central Connecticut State women’s basketball team has had its share of disappointments. Saturday’s 63-57 home loss against Quinnipiac in front of 1,172 would certainly qualify as one. The Blue Devils fell behind by double digits early on, mounted a fierce comeback, but just could not seem to get over the hump. CCSU head coach Beryl Piper summed up the defeat. “We can’t come out in the first half and play the way we played,” she said. Central fell behind 19-3 as the Bobcats shot with pinpoint accuracy. In the first half, they shot 40 percent from the field, 50 percent from beyond the arc, and made all five of their free throws. Central finished strong before halftime, setting up their second half comeback attempt. Trailing by as many as 17, the Blue Devils were able to cut the deficit to just two points. “We’re down, things are going our way, they just kept their composure and fought back one basket at a time,” said Piper. Therein lies the fundamental difference between the CCSU women’s basketball team of this year as opposed to years’ past. The neversay-die attitude. “In the past, if we were down like that, we would have just melted,” she said. Gabrielle Oglesby led the Blue Devils in scoring with 16 points. She was six for eight from the field and also pulled down five rebounds. “If we’re down, we’ve got to crawl our way back up,” said Oglesby. “We got a couple defensive stops, and I think that’s what sets it off, the defense.” Oglesby spoke about some of the other players and how they had gone through some rough seasons in the past at Central.

“They don’t want to be in that place again,” she said. “They know that in big games, we’ve got to show up.” Kerrianne Dugan and Shontice Simmons each scored in double digits for CCSU and sophomore Leanne Crockett pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds. Saturday’s game was eerily reminiscent of the Western Michigan game back in December. In that contest, CCSU fell behind by as many as

Shontice Simmons drives the lane.

23 points, and was able to fight back to get within just three points, ultimately falling short. Looking back to November, there was the loss to Bryant which saw the Blue Devils trail by 18. They came back to within a point, but the end result was another losing effort. All flashbacks aside, the Central Connecticut women’s basketball team took on one of the best teams in the conference at

Detrick Gymnasium on Saturday, and outplayed them for 30 minutes. Unfortunately for the Blue Devils, another bad start severely handicapped their efforts. On Monday night the Blue Devils defeated Mount St. Mary’s 60-47 to improve to 12-7 overall and 7-2 in the Northeast Conference. The women are in the midst of a three-game road swing that will see them take on first place Sacred Heart this Saturday. On Monday, they travel to Wagner to face the Seahawks.

Edward Gaug / The Recorder


THE RECORDER Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Upgrade Animal Collective Merriweather Post Pavilion Domino Records January 6, 2008

For jazz trio The Bad Plus, playing inventive and creative covers of popular rock songs has been a signature part of their musical progression. The group’s latest album matches the trio of pianist Ethan Iverson, bassist Reid Anderson and drummer Dave King with vocalist Wendy Lewis. For All I Care marks two new advances in the band’s history. For one, it is the first all-cover album from the band. In addition, Lewis’ arrival to the group marks the first time they match vocals up with their inventive covers. Fortunately for all involved, the new concept turns out beautiful. The vocals correlate perfectly with the trio’s style of music. What makes The Bad Plus’ covers so unique is the way they transform popular rock songs into intense jazz pieces. They’ve done it to David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”, Rush’s “Tom Sawyer” and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, which is perhaps their most popular and notorious cover to date. Because the trio is made up of a pianist, a bassist and a drummer the ever-popular guitar pieces must be made up

The Bad Plus For All I Care Universal Classics February 3, 2009

After Strawberry Jam, everything had changed for the band Animal Collective. They entered a new world of pop sensibility, turning many heads and gaining many new fans. The birth of an almost completely accessible Animal Collective had occurred. They followed with the Water Curses EP, exciting fans and casual listeners alike with the album’s title track. From that point until the announcement of the release date for their latest LP, Merriweather Post Pavilion, the band had let their fans experience tastes of what was to come at live shows. The popularity of the then-unreleased material combined with the mega-indie success of Strawberry Jam collided, causing a giant explosion of buzz for the band’s new album. Of course a few songs leaked and then eventually Merriweather Post Pavilion leaked in its entirety on the Internet. Most fans instantly fell in love with it, leading to the first run of the vinyl release, a press of 4,500 copies, to instantly sell out. Had most indie-based record shops reported to Nielsen Soundscan, this feat would’ve earned them a spot on the Billboard 200 based on their first-week sales of the vinyl alone.

So what makes Merriweather Post Pavilion so special? Well, first off it’s the band’s ability to write melodic, pop-driven songs that still mange to sound unique. From track to track you’re sucked into what seems like a magic spell. As you allow the music to swallow you whole, your brain becomes infected by its enchanting qualities. To start off, vocalists Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) and Dave Portner (Avey Tare) have never been more on the same page lyrically. They explore the joy of what it means to be human, the struggle for preservation of your loved ones and yourself and all of the other things that keep us up in bed thinking all night. Animal Collective has managed to give itself a collective voice, pushing past the volleyball effect that so many multi-song writer bands have been confined to. Musically, they’ve finally grown into their skin, constructing each song like the set of a play, each to be more visually stunning than the next, even if the images are all completely in your mind. You get the sense that there’s almost a spiritual quality to Merriweather Post Pavilion, a dreamy energy that can seduce you and then provoke the strongest of emotions. On this album we see each member contribute something special. Whether it’s Lennox’s ability to pull you through a world of poppy

African wonder, Portner’s ability to make you want to dance all around and tear at the eyes simultaneously, or Brian “Geologist” Weitz’s ability to make you feel like you’re in the middle of a hurricane that generates the prettiest sounds, every single thing on this album makes it work perfectly. Traditionally, in every album review there are usually tracks that are highlighted, set aside and talked about because they’re personal favorites of the writer. I cannot do that for Merriweather Post Pavilion. Every song could be analyzed and discussed far past the limitations of the space in this newspaper. So this leaves anyone interested after reading my praises of this album responsible to go explore it in its fullest. Skipping around from track to track is a mistake on this album. In my opinion, the only way to truly appreciate the whimsical ride Animal Collective has designed is to let it consume you completely. If you do it just may change the way you think and feel about music forever, which is indeed a rare opportunity.

for, which is where the true creative nature of the trio comes into play. For All I Care covers all walks of music. It begins with a cover of Nirvana’s “Lithium” before transitioning into a cover of Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb”. Similarities in both songs are of course very noticeable but each cover takes on a mind of its own. Lewis’ warm and low-key vocals add to this. The group sublimely takes the song out of its previous realm and into the jazz world. I am typically not one to drool over covers but The Bad Plus happens to be an exception. This is not the case of a group trying to sound like another group. You realize it’s a Pink Floyd song but it’s an entirely different experience. The same holds true to the cover of The Flaming Lips’ “Feeling Yourself Disintegrate”. The Bad Plus tackles it all in their newest album. From some of the most notable progressive rock songs to 20th century classic arrangements from the likes of György Ligeti and Milton Babbitt each cover is a new experience in of itself. Long-time fans of the trio might be disappointed with the lack of their usually brilliant original recordings. Otherwise, For All I Care is an interesting, intriguing and ultimately very satisfying album full of reworked songs from at least one band or artist we can all identify with.

Like most jam bands, Umphrey’s McGee is best known for their live performances and material. The band’s new album Mantis explores a new method of creation for the rising group. Unlike previous albums, Mantis was created entirely inside a studio and is not comprised of any previously played live material. Jam band purists who are initially turned off by the sin of the studio may rethink their beliefs after giving this album a spin. Umphrey’s McGee belongs to the small subgenre of progressive rock jam bands. Stagewise, the band is undoubtedly influenced by the methods of both Phish and Grateful Dead. Although UM’s sound is of its own unique style, the band can be likened to progressive giants such as the energetic King Crimson. Mantis brings the group back to their 2004 effort Anchor Drops in exploring the progressive side of things. The 20-month period spent in the studio creating Mantis was seemingly well worth it. While calling it the band’s best work would be

jumping far ahead of myself, I’m surely hooked on the album. For fans of previous work by UM, all of the things you loved resurface. The soaring choruses led by lead singer and guitarist Brendan Bayliss are back as well as the absolutely jarring riffs and guitar shredding by both Bayliss and second lead guitarist Jake Cinninger. The band’s choice to keep the album at a concise 54 minutes proves to be a good call. Taking up a large part of those 54 minutes is the album’s title track. It is a near 12-minute track that leaves no part of the progressive rock genre untouched. Complete with a few energetic and soulful solos and jazz-funk piano the track speeds by you. When it reaches its virtuous finale you’re left wanting more. The bottom line is that Mantis is essentially full of highlights. This six-man band fuses all parts of the band into one tight package. They’ve created their own unique sound and have elevated it to a point of pure achievement. If you’re new to the genre or the band, Mantis would be a good place to start. The hooking lyrics and addictive sounds are enough to grasp the newest of ears. While UM might always be remembered as one of the premier live improv bands of the genre, Mantis cements them in a new place: the studio. Michael Walsh / Entertainment

Michael Walsh / Entertainment

Umphrey’s McGee Mantis SCI Fidelity January 20, 2009

Jason Cunningham Entertainment Editor

Clint Eastwood is Still a Badass Steve Packnick Staff Writer

For many people the task of directing and producing a movie and starring as the lead role is a daunting task, but in Clint Eastwood’s latest movie Gran Torino this is just another day on the job for the 78 year-old, 10 time academy award nominee, actor/director/producer. Gran Torino’s main character Walter Kowalski (Clint Eastwood) is a widower - a grumpy, racist, all-American, unhappy old man who can’t stand anyone around him. Kowalski, who is a Korean War veteran, only has one prized possession – his 1973 Gran Torino. When a Hmong family moves in next door and his new neighbor Tao, a young teenager, is pressured into stealing his Gran Torino, Kowalski intervenes in the boy’s life and is set out to reform his ways. Throughout this process Kowalski is dragged into the lives of Tao’s family and slowly begins taking steps out to protect his neighborhood from a gang that threatens the neighborhood. From the beginning to the end Clint Eastwood does an absolutely amazing job in his role and shows the audience such a wide range

of emotions. Eastwood’s performance shows just how complex his character really is; the audience can see through the stern face of Kowalski’s troubled and dark past and with Eastwood’s raspy deep voice Kowalski’s deep hatred and anger at life. The National Board of Review even awarded Clint Eastwood with the Best Actor of the Year award. The supporting cast of Gran Torino was made up of all “no name” actors, some who have never been in film before. Bee Ving (Tao Lor), Ahney Her (Sue Lor), and most of the supporting cast delivered adequate performaces despite their lack of on-screen experience. On the other hand there was only one role that really seemed to be alittle lacking and that was Father Janovich played by Christopher Carley. Whenever Father Janovich was on screen there was an awkward feeling. All in all Gran Torino was a very good character study of an all-American war vet who goes through an amazing transformation. The story was great, the car was beautiful and the acting was spot on. After seeing this movie one could be convinced that even at the ripe old age of 78 years old that Clint Eastwood could take on anyone.


THE RECORDER / Wednesday, January 28, 2009 / UPGRADE

A Night at the Museum P.J. Decoteau Staff Writer

You definitely walked into the wrong place. The sign outside said “New Britain Museum of American Art” but this can’t be right. Museums don’t have open bars. They don’t have DJs and dance floors, and they certainly don’t have a multitude of attractive young people whose heads are actually outside of their own asses. All signs point to a hip downtown bar (if one were to exist), but the absence of “affliction” tees and blowouts, along with the beautiful array of art that lines the walls and hallways from top to bottom, can mean only one thing; you did, in fact, enter a museum, and it is, in fact, a party. The NBMAA, located right next to New Britain’s surprisingly charming Walnut Hill Park, defies presumption. Featuring art both classic and contemporary, it refuses to cater to just one demographic, offering instead a schmorgasbord of material within its limited space. Its

“Museum After Dark” parties, known as M.A.D. to regulars, have been happening for over a year now and have been growing in popularity around the New Britain and Hartford area. This doesn’t come as a surprise to attendees, who pay just $10 for members and students and $15 for non-members to not only gain access to open beer and wine bars but also have free range to roam the museum’s various exhibitions while getting a buzz on. Have you ever tried stumbling through an art museum after a few beers? It’s more fun than you’d think, even with your drunk friends pontificating on the deeper meaning of a landscape oil painting. Just don’t knock anything over. For those of you who prematurely turn up your noses at the idea of spending a Friday night at an art museum - open bar or not - the NBMAA’s inclusion of a dance floor, complete with club lights and a DJ who’ll play anything from ‘80s hits to Lil Wayne, should prove that this is no snooty get together.

On the other hand, if you’re looking forward to a pricey drink list, gaudy gowns and the absolute toast of the town this might not be your bag. Last Friday’s M.A.D. Snow Ball was no exception, building a bridge from the young and the hip to the old art connoisseurs and everyone in between. In effect, the Snow Ball was more like a snow globe, taking disparate elements like art, alcohol, music, and people of all ages and creeds, shaking them together and seeing what happens. The result? Well, you know it’s a good night when anyone over 30 dances unabashedly to “Lollipop” and the biggest bump in the road is a tapped keg of Long Trail. For more information about the NBMAA and its various exhibitions and gatherings like M.A.D. you can visit or subscribe to their email list. For future reference, though, remember that you did walk into the right place, it’s just not what you expected.

Freezing Westfarms Melissa Traynor Editor-in-Chief

Between 100 and 200 people, mostly in their teens or early twenties, descended upon the center of the Westfarms Mall on Saturday, not to shop, but to sit or stand perfectly still. For exactly five minutes between 2 and 2:05 p.m. on Jan. 25, these participants volunteered to “freeze” in a natural position, triggered by a cell phone with a vibrating alarm. Some froze mid-step, while eating, talking to friends, poised to kiss their boyfriend or girlfriend or stooping down to reach a hat on the ground. Katie Hemingway a junior at Farmington High School was the mastermind behind the mass “freeze” at Westfarms. She said she borrowed the idea for the freeze from Improv Everywhere, a group of thousands of participants called “undercover agents” whose missions are to cause chaos in public places. The group, who orchestrated a mass freeze in Grand Central Terminal in New York City, is also responsible for “No Pants 2k9” on Jan. 10. Approximately 2,500 people across 22 cities enjoyed pantsless subway rides for the day, spanning over four subway lines in New York. While Saturday’s freeze was certainly less controversial, and probably less embarrassing, the crowd’s excitement and dedication to their five minutes of freeze was on pace with professionals. One boy was poised to pop a chip into his mouth for the whole five minutes, while a friend was frozen with his hand reaching into the bag near them. “I’m very satisfied with it,” Hemingway said. “The morning before [the freeze] I was really nervous and I had no idea what to expect.” The Westfarms freeze was done in order to complete Hemingway’s Center for Creative Youth leadership project. CCY is a five-week summer camp held at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn. Around 150 stu-

DJ Ian Urg spins at the Museum After Dark.

Bringing Back “Freaks and Geeks” Karyn Danforth Lifestyles Editor

Grand Central Terminal freeze.

dents attended this past summer’s session and they had the opportunity to “major” in different fields and earn course credit if their high schools are arranged to accept it. Hemingway said that the leadership project is a good way for the camp to gauge what credits a student should earn. The general guidelines of the leadership project were to find something that the student is passionate about and in Hemingway’s case, she decided that she would like to pursue a theatre experiment. Other leadership projects included public poetry readings or charity work. She wanted to bring guerilla art and experimental theatre methods to the Farmington area and work it into her project. She sees similar activities, such as gluing little plastic eyeballs on poles in public or painting rocks, as things people can get excited about. “I had no idea this many people would be so interested,” she said. Hemingway added that when she initially posted the event to invite people to Westfarms, she intended on 30-60 people, but so many more people were invited. On the day

Google Images: GCT Freeze

of the event, over 700 replied that they were attending. “It just blew up,” she said. Hemingway said that she expected mostly high school and college-age kids to show up for the freeze, but encouraged people to invite their families in an effort to involve more people. Where the Westfarms mall security had every opportunity to intervene, they sat back and enjoyed the five-minute show, while looking out for safety hazards, of course. “One mall janitor actually got involved,” Hemingway said. She said that the mall employees were probably thankful for the extra business on Saturday. She explained that she brought her family to the freeze and ended up doing some shopping. Once the five-minute mark hit, the center of Westfarms erupted in applause and laughter. The crowd dispersed, each group of friends huddled around the viewer of a friend’s digital camera and giggling as they recounted their five minutes of freeze. For online content, go to

P. J. Decoteau / The Recorder

A television sitcom’s longevity is never determinable in an entertainment industry where anything is acceptable: similar themes resurface, plots become predictable and quality gets swallowed by its profit value. In this fictitious comedy, Lindsey Weir is a smart teenager who lives in Michigan in the 1980’s (and being from the Midwest, the most exciting thing to do is play tag in a cornfield) and is discontent with living a standard and consistent lifestyle of competing on a math team and being obedient to her parents rules. Running into a bunch of burned out potheads at school one day, Lindsey realizes they offer a different aspect of life she has not experienced in a school ran by hair gel laden jocks and cheerleaders who find Steve Martin’s humor moronic. On the flipside, there’s Lindsey’s brother Sam who, as a prepubescent freshman constantly struggling with his geekdom, refuses Dungeons and Dragons to chase after girls who dislike his favorite comedian. This is how “Freaks and Geeks” intertwines each character with another, showcasing a closely knit high

school in a time period long past with a diverse soundtrack of Joan Jett, Rush, Grateful Dead and brief moments of disco that are mocked by the majority of the students. With some main characters played by the ever recognizable Seth Rogan and James Franco, there are many other actors who pop up unexpectedly, like Jason Schwartzmann and Ben Stiller in laughworthy roles as a fake ID creator and a secret service agent for Vice President George Bush. Laughter will be plentiful as you watch the freshmen boys’ attempt to find the perfect torque in a game of spin the bottle, switch a keg of normal beer with non-alcoholic in worry of people driving home drunk and trick or treating as a robot, Charlie Chaplin and the bionic woman. That is, unless you’re someone as uptight as cheerleader Cindy Sanders who can’t muster a single chuckle. Time to shell out 60 dollars for the 18-episode DVD box set; it is worth every penny.

Healthy Volunteers Needed If you are 21-30 we need you for research studying the brain’s reaction to alcohol at the Alcohol Research Center VA Connecticut Healthcare System. Eligible participants will be paid $150 per test day (3 test days) To find out if you are eligible, please call:

(203) 932-5711 ext 5688 evenings weekends: (203) 843 7031 All calls are confidential HIC #12310, HSS IP17, IP22


THE RECORDER / Wednesday, January 28, 2009 / UPGRADE

Checking Up on Kiss Kiss Karyn Danforth Lifestyles Editor

12-year-old who likes Led Zeppelin, you’re taken aback.

Recently I sat down with Kiss Kiss before a show at a small bar in New Haven, Conn. before their show in a basement that had “luscious” carpet and finely decorated walls. As some cold brews were sipped on, Kiss Kiss explained the difficulty of the new album, The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left, the downfall of the music industry and the need for audiences at live performances.

Schlappich: Speaking of that, we played a show last night, and the show before ours was for the School of Rock, started by Paul Green, and they’re kids that go to this extracurricular music school and they learn rock music. They had a two set entire Doors cover, and it was incredible to watch these kids totally loving classic rock. It inspired me and actually gave me a little hope.

Karyn Danforth: What have you been up to in the past two years?

Benash: Yeah, kids not playing Guitar Hero that aren’t brainwashed on pop.

Jared Karns: We made a new record and have a new bassist, Mike Abiuso.

Schlappich: They were genuinely into what they were doing, and doing an amazing job.

KD: How long did it take to record the new album, The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left?

KD: Did anyone like Inauguration Day, politics aside?

Josh Benash: It happened over the span of nine months, but probably four months were actually spent recording. We spent a month in the actual studio.

Schlappich: There was a classical quartet that played, and Itzhak Perlman is the soul reason that I started playing violin. I saw him at three years old on the television, and I turned around to my parents and said, “I want to do that!” It totally ruled. I got a little choked up seeing him play again; he was my total inspiration. God bless my parents, violin is the worst instrument to start a child out on, because it just sounds like crap, coming from someone that has taught violin.

KD: What does the title imply? Benash: There’s meaning behind it; its pretty obvious what it means: what’s left. KD: I know you guys are involved in current events – the last time we spoke about your global warming Christmas album and how you were “ahead of the curve.”

KD: Is there anything you’d like to urge your fans or the general public in terms of supporting the band, or music in a broad sense?

Rebecca Schlappich: It’s along the same lines, the inevitable destruction of everything.

Schlappich: We thank them for their patience, and hopefully we will be working with new management soon that will promote us in the right direction. We’re really grateful for everyone’s support. I don’t have a job right now and can’t make my rent, so please help us out!

Benash: It’s not inevitable though, it’s self-fulfilling. It’s a choice. People choose it. Karns: Generally speaking, we have a very fatalistic outlook toward things overall, I think the title reflects that. KD: What kind of tomfoolery occurred in the making of it? Patrick Southern: There’s a lot of videos on my hard drive, a lot of stuff people haven’t seen. There’s probably things you shouldn’t see.

Kiss Kiss opened for Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Bear Hands on Jan. 8 at The Space.

Karns: We grew mustaches. Patrick would walk through the studio with only a skirt on.

Benash: On a brick or out a brick? Because shitting on a brick is not that hard.

Southern: You act like I’m the joker, like “this guy just came along for the ride,” what with my underwear, skirt and mustache. Schlappich: There’s a progression of his facial hair in pictures. It’s pretty funny.

Schlappich: I enjoyed it because this was the first one I’m on. I love the studio, it’s like band camp. You get to stay there for two weeks, and all you do is get up, start recording at noon until midnight, drink, go to sleep, then get up and do it again.Karns: Writing it was tough because Josh was on vocal rest, so we were doing everything on the chalkboard. He had a vocal node, so he didn’t talk for four solid months, so the entire album was written in mime. Once you have one person miming things to you, you catch onto it.

KD: What does it sound like compared to Reality Vs. The Optimist? Benash: It’s thicker when we were actually trying to do the opposite. Tried to make it more slimmed down, less arranged, naked and bare, instead there’s strings, horn, choir, 12 different keyboard arrangements, and several vocal tracks. Schlappich: It’s a pretty dark album, moreso than the last one; it’s a lot heavier and even more orchestrated. KD: Is there any specific inspiration for the album? Benash: Obligation? (laughter from everyone) That was mine for most of it. I didn’t enjoy making this last record. Karns: We enjoyed making Reality Vs. The Optimist more, this one was a pain in the ass. It was like shitting on a brick.

Karns: I was the one that couldn’t pick up the new language. I just wanted to talk! Then they’d write on the chalkboard, ‘on this beat’... Southern: Yeah, and Josh had fiveyear-old handwriting. Abiuso: You can hear that it was hard to make, it has this difficult vibe to it. Schlappich: Underlying desperation. Benash: We’re better musicians on this album. Karns: This time it felt like a real band.

KD: How has the fan base been? Schlappich: The fans that we do have, I’m amazed at how loyal they are. The fan base has been stagnant, but it’s because we haven’t made an album in a long time, or toured. The hardcore fans are what keep me going and make me want to keep playing shows, because I know there’s always one person there that is so in love with us. Southern: It might not look like we’ve been working, but we definitely have been. KD: How hard is it being a band in the economic crisis? Schlappich: It’s not just that, but the downfall of the recording industry. The roles have switched, it used to be bands would play live shows to sell albums. Now, people find albums free and the only way to be a successful band is to play live shows and get people to go to them. A band our size, we’re not really making any money with album sales anymore. Benash: Or show sales either, we can’t even fill up a tank of gas; no one is buying merchandise. It’s like a hundred thousand hours of uncompensated work, and you see the kids come up to the merch table and are like, “Oh I can get that for free.” They even tell it to your face, and end up not buying anything.

Edward Gaug / The Recorder

Southern: Or they ask, “Do you know where I can get this for free?” KD: It seems these days it doesn’t take much talent for acts in the Top 40 to get big, that it doesn’t mean much anymore to learn the skills of becoming a real musician. Schlappich: That’s the truth, there are brilliant local musicians that are having just as hard of a time as we are. Benash: You go back in the day to the ‘50s and ‘60s, you had professional arrangers who were amazing at arranging instruments, singers in bands that were incredibly talented, great producers, and then there was engineers who were trained in audio technology who would make amazing sounding records. Now all you have is a bunch of people recording on pro tools in their basement and releasing it onto MySpace, so the majority of music is mediocre. There’s not that love of art and craft. It’s going to get worse because record companies are going to crash and who is going to fund these things? Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys spent $24,000 on just Good Vibrations alone, but it was worth it. You’re not going to have that anymore. KD: The generations that are being raised on the current mediocre music enjoy it, but when you see a

Karns: Don’t live on the Internet, actually go to shows. I used to go to every single one in my hometown when I was a little kid. I didn’t care or know who the bands were, but I’d always go hoping I’d see a band I’d like and buy a CD and discover something I loved. I feel like that spirit is gone. People find a band on the Internet by accident, and when that band comes through their town, they might go to the show. It’s backwards, it used to be the Internet was an afterthought; it’s a great tool, but when people do all their music life on it (using iTunes and YouTube) it’s disheartening. Also, buy the records. Benash: Buy vinyl, the compression sounds better, the sound quality is rich. Karns: Our new album will be on vinyl, and the old one is being re-released on it. What we’re hoping we can do is include a download card with the vinyl where you can download the songs to your iTunes, that way you have it in two places. That’s the way we think albums should be released nowadays. Schlappich: The Internet is one medium, but it’s so important to go see music live, so important. You’re never going to get the experience you hear from compressed shitty mp3s that you’re going to get at a crazy show where they break drums. You’re never going to see it. Kiss Kiss will be performing tomorrow, Thursday, Jan. 29 at Heirloom Arts Theater in Danbury, Conn. with The Gay Blades at 8 p.m.

THE RECORDER / Wednesday, January 28, 2009 / UPGRADE


Benjamin Button Leads the Way at Oscar Nominations Michael Walsh

Asst. Entertainment

The nominees for the 81st annual Academy Awards were announced last Thursday morning with The Curious Case of Benjamin Button as a contender for 13 Oscars, including best picture. Among the nominations Benjamin Button received were best actor in a leading role nomination for Brad Pitt and best supporting actress for Taraji P. Henson’s performance in the film. The film stocked up in the technical aspects of the nomination list by securing nods for art direction, cinematography, film editing and original score among other categories. The film also received nominations for Eric Roth’s adapted screenplay and for David Fincher’s directorial efforts. Runner up to Benjamin was Danny Boyle’s Slumdog Millionaire. The film, which won best picture at this year’s Golden Globes, received a total of 10 nominations. The film was shut out in the acting categories but received nominations for best picture, directing and adapted screenplay and scored a double nomination in the best original song category for the efforts of A.R. Rahman. The final three spots for the best picture category were taken by Ron Howard’s Frost/Nixon, Gus Van Sant’s Milk and Stephen Daldry’s The Reader, which was the most surprising nominee of the five. Notable films left off the best picture nominee list include blockbuster favorites The

Dark Knight and Wall-E along with limited released films like Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler and John Patrick Shanley’s Doubt, which received four nominations for excellence in acting. The snubbed films weren’t left out completely as the late Heath Ledger was nominated for best supporting actor for his work as The Joker in Dark Knight, one of the film’s eight nominations. Wall-E received six nominations in total, including one for best animated feature. Mickey

Rourke, who won best actor at this year’s Golden Globe, continues his comeback streak with a nomination for his lead performance in The Wrestler. In addition to Pitt’s and Rourke’s nominations for best actor in a leading role were Frank Langella for his portrayal of Richard Nixon in Frost/Nixon, Sean Penn’s turn as Harvey Milk and Richard Jenkins in The Visitor. Ledger is joined in the category of best supporting actor by Josh Brolin for his performance in

Milk, Robert Downey Jr. for his comedic role in Tropic Thunder, Philip Seymour Hoffman in the aforementioned Doubt and Michael Shannon for his portrayal of a mentally sick man in Revolutionary Road. The category for best actress in a leading role contains nominations for Kate Winslet in The Reader, Angelina Jolie in Changeling, Anne Hathaway in Rachel Getting Married, Melissa Leo in Frozen River and Meryl Streep in Doubt. Best actress in a supporting role features two wom-

en from Doubt as both Amy Adams and Viola Davis received nominations. Joining Adams, Davis and the aforementioned Henson (Benjamin Button) is Penélope Cruz for Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Marisa Tomei for her performance in The Wrestler. The Oscars are set to take place on Feb. 22, 2009 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, California. The ceremony will be hosted by Hugh Jackman and will be televised on ABC.

Netflix vs. Blockbuster Struggle Lycans Does Vampires vs. Werewolves Justice for Online Supremacy Michael Walsh

Michael Walsh

Asst. Entertainment

The advent and rise of the Internet has changed the landscape for DVD rentals as we know it. The option of illegally downloading movies for free has become a viable and intriguing option for computer-literate people. On the other hand, the Internet has opened an honest debate of brick and mortar DVD renting at Blockbuster versus the convenience and ease of online rental services such as Netflix where the DVDs are sent to you. There are lots of points to weigh when considering how to go about renting films. First and foremost is to consider how many DVDs you rent on average per month. At the rough price of $4 plus tax at a local Blockbuster store things can add up quick. Netflix’s online plans are a much more cost-effective option. If you rent four DVDs a month in an actual Blockbuster store you’re spending the same amount as you would be for Netflix’s three out at-atime plan which is set at $16.99 a month. To sweeten the deal, members are given the ability to watch a limited selection of films and television shows on your computer or Netflix-ready device. Selections range from classics such as 2001: A Space Odyssey to niche titles such as Dancer in the Dark or television shows such as “The Office”. The instant watch feature is available with any of the Netflix unlimited plans which range from one at-a-time for $8.99 a month to eight at-a-time for $47.99. Those of you who own an Xbox 360 might have noticed Microsoft’s partnership with Netflix this past fall when the New Xbox Experience system update came into effect. If one has an Xbox 360, a gold Xbox Live membership and any of the unlimited rental plans on Netflix they are able to view the instant watch selections on their televisions through their

When Kate Beckinsale decided to hang up her skin-tight costume and faux vampire teeth, the studio had but one logical choice for a third film in the Underworld series: a prequel. Whether a prequel to the centuries-old feud between vampires and werewolves is what fans wanted or if it was even necessary is beyond argument at this point. Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is an origins story that focuses on how former slave to a legion of vampires, Lucian (Michael Sheen), becomes leader of a powerful race of werewolves in an uprising against vampire leader Viktor (Bill Nighy). The film details how the long-running war between the two groups in the first Underworld film came to be. With the departure of Beckinsale also came the departure of her husband and director of the first two films in the series, Len Wiseman. Promoted to his spot is Patrick Tatopoulos, a man who knows monsters. Tatopoulos worked as creature designer on the two previous Underworld films as well as in other recent genre films such as I Am Legend and Silent Hill. Lycans is Tatopoulos’ feature-length debut and it is a commendable effort. Although both the lead actress and director are gone, not much else has changed. Given expanded and elevated roles are Bill Nighy and Michael Sheen. The latter, fresh off his terrific performance in the Oscar nominated film Frost/Nixon, returns as Lucian, would-be leader of the Lycans. Rather than going head on with Richard Nixon, Sheen’s character faces off with the equally sinister Viktor, king of the vampires. Both actors hold their own and do a lot for the film emotionally when it needs it the most. Stylistically, Lycans matches the feel of the first two films. The sets are lavishly gothic and the tone is

Asst. Entertainment

Xbox 360. This includes a small number of high definition titles. The new partnership with Microsoft essentially gives capable Netflix users a seemingly endless collection of films at home to watch at any time of the day. In an attempt to combat the efforts by Netflix, Blockbuster devised their own online rental program. The program is similar in function to Netflix where users add films to their queue and the titles are shipped to his/ her home. The one difference comes with Blockbuster’s Total Access program. For $19.99 a month members receive three rentals at home at a time and five in-store exchanges per month. This means that five times a month you’re able to bring your returned and sealed envelope of a DVD you received in the mail to the store to exchange it for a free rental. When Blockbuster first began this promotion they offered unlimited in store exchanges for a cheaper price, meaning if you rented 15 DVDs in a month you could turn that into 30 DVDs if desired. The other basic option for Blockbuster is $15.99 a month for three out at-a-time with no in-store exchanges. This does not come with any sort of online viewing feature like Netflix does. While price for online services might lean in Blockbuster’s direction there are a few more items to think about that will help you make your choice. First you must consider the types of films that you’re going to rent. My experience has shown that many of the films that Blockbuster had as very long waits (which is as long as it sounds) are available to ship

next day at Netflix. The general selection and variety on Netflix is much wider as well. Far more niche genre titles or obscure foreign films can be found on Netflix that are nowhere to be found on Blockbuster’s online program. As far as the always-important customer service goes, Netflix trumps again. From my experience with Blockbuster’s online program I can’t help but suggest against it if you want to receive your DVDs in order and on time. With Blockbuster, some titles that were listed as “available” weren’t sent to me. Instead of having the number one film on my list sent to me, the title I ranked fifth would be sent. When you have limited time to receive and watch these films the idea that what’s available will be sent to me is always important. While this isn’t an often occurrence, Blockbuster easily surpassed Netflix in sending me more of the incorrect or broken discs. The best way to decide between the two services might be to use both services’ free limited trials that typically last two weeks. Although it is a limited time frame it might give you a good idea as to which program you’ll get the most out of. The two companies seem poised to battle for supremacy in online DVD renting, as the convenience of going to a store and picking a DVD up on a whim has been surpassed by the even more convenient process of having DVDs shipped straight to your mailbox. Both Netflix’s and Blockbuster’s online programs are a much cheaper alternative to the oldfashioned renting at a store.

dark. Where the film takes a drop is in the special effects department. From time to time a few of the deaths look poorly done and sloppy. These deserved a little more attention. The action sequences are filmed using the popular and increasingly annoying hyper-edit technique. Lycans is not even close to being the number one offender of using this new Achilles’ heel of action films. That said, the action scenes are, more often than not, impressive and entertaining. There is nothing exactly wrong with the plot of Lycans but it did feel a bit conventional. It draws slightly from the realm of Shakespeare’s Verona with a kind of forbidden relationship between two members of different families. These families just happen to be vampires and werewolves. What the film does do well is let the viewer see both sides of the story. This should lead to new experiences when watching both the first and second films again. Being vampires and werewolves, the film has the feel of a big budget B-movie, complete with the campy visuals and dialogue. This, of course, isn’t a bad thing if appreciative of this style of filmmaking. Heading into the film expecting a mindless battle between vampires and werewolves will result in the best experience. Expect anything else and it could be a sorely disappointing time. Lycans is far from the perfect adventure into the Underworld universe. Regardless, the film is an entertaining experience. Most of the acting is far better than it should be for a film of this type. Sheen and Nighy, along with new leading lady Rhona Mitra and Kevin Grevioux’s return as Raze, elevate the film’s rather typical story and get its juices flowing. Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is a lot better than we’re typically treated to in month of January. Monster fans, be pleased.

Album Reviews - Page 8 Oscar Nominations - Page 11 M.A.D. Snowball - Page 9

Kiss Kiss interview - page 10


nathan mitChell matt Kiernan hockey takes home a Pair of Wins Page 10 Page 6 Page 3 Page 7 Catching up With Kiss Kiss news editor arizona Da...