October 27, 2011
volume 103 • issue 12 • thesheaf.com
The University of Saskatchewan student newspaper since 1912
Brianna Whitmore/Graphics Editor
The evolution of horror on film
A brief history of Hollywood’s everlasting love affair with horror movies
JORDAN CAMPBELL People have had a love affair with all things spooky and perverse for centuries. For as long as there has been language, people have been whispering unsettling fables to make each other’s skin crawl. For as long as there have been doors, people have been jumping out from behind them with the intent to startle. But more interesting than our fascination with terrifying our nearest and dearest
friends is our preoccupation with scaring ourselves. Horror movies have been around since before the turn of the 20th century. In the 1890s, Georges Méliès made several short silent horror films, the most noteworthy being La Manoir du Diable (1886). The threeminute film was an experiment with camera magic in a spooky setting, intended to amuse rather than frighten people. But, honestly, the same could be said about the Saw series.
In 1922, along came Nosferatu, F.W. Murnau’s German film that everyone has heard of but few have seen. In the true spirit of the film industry, nearly every screen vampire since Nosferatu has been a tribute to Max Schreck’s portrayal of Count Orlok (Dracula). Sunlight was never a part of vampire lore — not until the good Count was (spoiler alert!) reduced to a puff of smoke by the morning rays in the end of Murnau’s unauthorized Dracula adaptation.
In the ’30s, the monster movie was king. These were movies that fused adventure with fantastic abominations. Some of them had the unique ability to make the audience feel like the bad guys (see King Kong, the Frankenstein series and, later on, Godzilla). Others were just exploitative attempts to horrify, an aspect of the genre that has held up well over the years (perhaps with a more politically correct methodology). Freaks, a 1932 film
about sideshow performers, was the most obvious of this kind of film, casting people with actual deformities rather than actors in order to scare the audience.
Horror cont. on
2• #SK2011 Editor-in-Chief: Ishmael N. Daro, editor@thesheaf. com Production Manager: Matthew Stefanson, layout@thesheaf. com Senior News Editor: Tannara Yelland, news@thesheaf. com Associate News Editor: Daryl Hofmann, news@thesheaf. com Photography Editor: Raisa Pezderic, photo@thesheaf. com Graphics Editor: Brianna Whitmore, graphics@ thesheaf.com
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thesheaf.com/news • the sheaf •October 27, 2011
The postsecondary debate If elected, the NDP promise to bring back the tuition freeze
Sheaf editors emptied out all of their pockets to come up with this much money.
DARYL HOFMANN Associate News Editor A plan to help students through postsecondary spending is featured in the platforms of both major parties in the Nov. 7 provincial election. Brad Wall and the Saskatchewan Party have introduced the Saskatchewan Advantage Scholarship and the Saskatchewan Advance Grant for Education Savings. The advantage scholarship would provide grade 12 graduates with $500 per year, for four years, which they can use toward tuition. The advantage grant, meanwhile, will match 10 per cent of parental contributions to any child’s Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for up to $250 annually. On the other hand, if elected, Dwain Lingenfelter and the NDP have said they will bring back a fully-funded tuition freeze for Saskatchewan universities and the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology. Under Lorne Calvert’s NDP government, a tuition freeze was implemented for five years from 2004-09. Since the Sask. Party lifted that freeze, average undergraduate tuition in the province has gone up three per cent in both 2009-10 and 2011-12, and five per cent in 2010-11 for a total of just over $500. “Electing an NDP government means students in 2015 will pay the same tuition at our universities and SIAST campuses as they do today,” said Lingenfelter in a release. The NDP platform also includes raising the maximum allowable family income level for
student loans, increasing training opportunities at postsecondary institutions, investing in on-reserve courses and funding 100 new graduate student bursaries. The total NDP postsecondary package will cost an estimated $313 million over four years if implemented. In response, Wall told Regina’s Leader-Post that the NDP’s platform is reckless and that freezes are poor policy, mostly because governments often fail to live up to their pledges to increase funding in order to make up for tuition shortfalls. University of Saskatchewan President Peter MacKinnon also spoke out against the NDP’s proposed tuition freeze, saying it “would overstep the bounds of any Saskatchewan government.” According to the University of Saskatchewan Act of 1995, the setting of tuition rates is the sole responsibility of the Board of Governors, and MacKinnon claims there are “very good reasons for placing this authority with our board.” He said the board examines tuition rates closely and has the best interests of the university, students and residents of Saskatchewan in mind. He also added that research shows tuition is not the main barrier affecting access to postsecondary education, but is instead the result of the influence of parents and family members. Canadian Federation of Students Saskatchewan Chairperson Haanim Nur, who also sits on the University of Regina Students’ Union executive, feels a tuition freeze would be a move forward for the province and would simply allow more people access to university
ancing ke & D Karao ightly N
and SIAST. She said both the CFS and the URSU are publicly endorsing a freeze. Nur said the Sask. Party’s
Instead of capping it at a level that’s unaffordable for some people, find out the people who it is unaffordable for and give them money to help. SCOTT HITCHINGS
USSU PRESIDENT platform overlooks the needs of students who are currently enrolled in postsecondary institutions, as well as students whose parents cannot afford to contribute to the RESP program. “It eliminates those who can’t afford it and need it the most,” she said. She also pointed out that provincial governments across the country regularly cap tuition increases at a certain percentage, therefore claiming it is in governments’ mandate to regulate tuition. U of S Students’ Union President Scott Hitchings said he sees no place for the government’s hand in setting tuition prices, and suggests
Raisa Pezderic/Photo Editor
the USSU will instead be lobbying for more grants, scholarships and bursaries. He explained that a tuition freeze is too broad a policy and helps students whose parents can already afford the cost of postsecondary education. “Even if they were to freeze tuition at the level it’s at now, it is still going to be hard for some people to pay. So instead of capping it at a level that’s unaffordable for some people, find out the people who it is unaffordable for and give them money to help,” Hitchings said. “We could be lobbying for tuition to stay the same as it is right now, but that is not something we are going to be asking from the government. That is something I am going to be doing at the Board of Governors meetings.” University of Saskatchewan professor David McGrane, an expert in Saskatchewan politics, said freezing tuition is a sure way to help out all students in one fell swoop. But McGrane also mentioned freezes can have harsh effects on a school’s quality, like leading to larger class sizes with fewer qualified professors. “It comes down to the argument of people being concerned about maintaining the quality of education on one side, and people being concerned about the affordability of education on the other side.”
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October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/news
NDP and Sask. Party lagging in female participation Less than a quarter of candidates in provincial election are women SHARAI SIEMENS Although there has been an increase of women in Canadian politics of about 20 per cent in the last 30 years, there is still a shortage of female representation. “Saskatchewan is abnormally low in terms of percentage,” said Loleen Berdahl, political science professor at the University of Saskatchewan. Berdahl says that, nationally, Saskatchewan is a bit behind but that there is not a huge gap. Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec have a higher proportion of women in the legislature because their political parties put more emphasis on making sure they have more female candidates. With 58 seats available in the Nov. 7 provincial election, the Sask. Party has 10 female candidates, while the NDP has 13. According to Berdahl, the numbers are lower than they have been in the last few elections. She also said that even though the NDP has a goal as one of their policy statements to try to achieve gender parity in the number of candidates, they are a long way off from that. Deb Higgins, deputy leader of the NDP and MLA for Moose Jaw Wakamow, said that they have set
Brianna Whitmore/Graphics Editor
targets for themselves to improve female participation in politics. Although they have not met their target this time, they wanted 50 per cent of candidates to be female. However, many women lost their nomination fights. “It’s a start,” said Higgins. “We need to have targets and we need to be actively recruiting women and actively speaking to women of the opportunities that are out there and
how they can contribute through politics.” The long and unpredictable hours of life in politics require time and commitment away from both home and family. Consequently, it is difficult to see greater female participation in politics because women in this day and age “carry the brunt of responsibility for family care,” said Higgins. Laura Ross, the Sask. Party MLA
for Regina Qu’Appelle Valley, says her party does not set goals for gender parity. The Sask. Party feels that it is important for the “best person to have the job, be it man or woman,” she said. However, the Sask. Party still encourages women to participate in a variety of ways and has many women in other positions such as campaign managers. “A lot of times women don’t
see themselves in that role [as candidates], so we are encouraging women to step forward,” said Ross. One organization encouraging more female participation is Equal Voice, a non-partisan group pushing for gender balance in politics. According to Equal Voice’s website, “Women are 52 per cent of Canada’s population and make up an average of 21 per cent of Canada’s municipal councils, provincial legislatures and the House of Commons.” Equal Voice was talked about extensively in the Sask. Party, and Ross stated that many times women do not see themselves in politics because they do not understand all the responsibilities. She further stated that once that happens, women of all ages are prepared to step forward. Professor Berdahl says the fact that Saskatchewan now has an Equal Voice chapter is a “positive development.”
Students join election rat race
City punts on parking
Candidates juggle classes, homework and door-knocking
Sunday parking fees deferred
ISHMAEL N. DARO Editor-in-Chief About a dozen university students are balancing their studies with the demands of being candidates in the provincial election. The NDP has five student candidates, the Greens have four and the Sask. Party has one. The Saskatchewan Liberal Party could not be reached but has at least one student running, in the Saskatoon Sutherland riding. Alex Mortensen, a University of Regina student running for the NDP in Cypress Hills, says the key is organization. “I’m trying to keep really organized and use my time as efficiently as possible,” she said about the demands of school and campaigning. Mortensen, a second-year political science and French double major, says she chose to run for the NDP because she believes “in equal opportunities and people benefiting rather than large corporations.” Shawn Setyo, a University of Saskatchewan student in International Studies, says he has always been interested in politics and grew up in a family with a history of public service. “Growing up I had difficulty relating to any of the top parties,” Setyo said. “The environment, the health of our democracy and the nuclear issue were never hot topics for any of these groups.” It was a geology class in university that ultimately made him join the Green Party after “realizing
the harsh realities of global climate change.” “Every piece of their platform spoke out to me, issues like sustainable development, fighting poverty and electoral reform were all addressed. This was the only party in my eyes that held the concern of all Canadians in mind, and that is why I joined the Greens.”
Student loans are not free money and a lot of students get out and are in debt. Jennifer Campeau
Sask. Party candidate and U of S PhD student Setyo, running in SaskatoonEastview, says that although campaigning can be tiring, his previous candidacy for the federal Greens and his fellow candidates keep him going. Both Mortensen and Setyo cited the cost of post-secondary education as a major concern. “I would like to see the government implementing programs to make university more affordable and attainable to everyone, to make more daycare spaces for university students
with children and to create more living spaces for students,” said Mortensen. Jennifer Campeau, the Sask. Party’s lone student candidate, emphasized student debt as something she wants to focus on if elected. “Student loans are not free money,” Campeau said, “and a lot of students get out and are in debt.” She wants to focus on accessibility of education, as well as increasing scholarship and bursary opportunities. Campeau is pursuing a PhD in Native Studies at the U of S and running in Saskatoon-Fairview, a riding that has been an NDP stronghold since the 1980s. Still, she has been door-knocking since spring. “I have been out there for months, several days a week actually,” she said. All three candidates interviewed for this article agreed student engagement needs to increase, and that students bring perspectives to government that are currently in short supply. “I think it’s important that we have representation across all parties,” said Campeau. “And I’m glad students are becoming involved in the political process. Otherwise how is our voice going to get heard?”
TANNARA YELLAND Senior News Editor Saskatoon City Councillors discussed and ultimately deferred a motion on Oct. 24 to implement paid metered parking on Sundays in the downtown, Broadway and Riversdale neighbourhoods. There are no large metropolitan centres in Canada that currently charge for parking on Sundays, though city councillor Darren Hill says there are other municipalities that are already doing this. Hill said as far as he knows, most business owners downtown are in favour of the motion. “People will park at a meter,” he said, “and they’ll stay there all day while they’re working. So there’s no turnover. [Business owners] see this as an opportunity to fix that problem.” But Neil Malik, owner of popular downtown night club Scratch, said that as far as he can see, this is not an issue on Sundays. By his estimation, parking occupancy downtown on Sundays runs at around 50 per cent. “There’s plenty of spots available,” he said. “I know a good majority of people that reserve their downtown shopping to Sundays because of the free meters and the availability of parking. It will definitely hurt retail sales and downtown needs all the help it can get on Sundays.” Despite Hill’s rosier analysis of business-owners’ opinions, he
said he thinks council is moving too quickly on the issue, and has failed to solicit the thoughts of groups who will be affected. Hill introduced a motion at council that passed on Monday to refer the motion back to city administrators for further consideration. City administrators had brought up the proposal and had presented it to the city’s executive council, which passed the motion and sent it on to city council for approval. But Hill thinks the proposal needs more time. “I don’t think we’ve done our due diligence on the matter,” Hill said. “There are churches, the library, residential towers and seniors’ complexes that will all be impacted, and we haven’t talked to them yet.” If the plan is approved after administration returns it to council, meters will require $2 per hour. This is expected to bring in around $400,000 per year in revenue. According to Hill, the extra revenue will largely be spent on “street improvements” of the kind currently changing the 3rd Ave landscape. But Malik offered a stern rebuke to the members of city council and the city’s administration. “I don’t think people should have to pay more money as a result of the City of Saskatoon’s problem with asset management. They painted themselves into a corner and are now finding ways to get out of it.”
thesheaf.com/news • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Meet the candidates To prepare for the upcoming Nov. 7 provincial election, the Sheaf interviewed the four official candidates for the Saskatoon Sutherlandriding. The constituency encompasses the University of Saskatchewan and the neighbourhoods of
Varsity View, Greystone Heights, Grosvenor Park, College Park, College Park East and Sutherland. The NDP dominated the urban riding from 1986 to 2007, when Saskatchewan Party candidate and former police officer Joceline Schriemer beat NDP
Naveed Anwar Saskatoon Sutherland
New Democratic Party of Saskatchewan
incumbent Graham Addley by just three per cent. With Schriemer pulling the plug on her political career to once again join the police force, Saskatoon Sutherland is a fourway race between firsttime candidates.
Naveed Anwar has had a passion for politics since his time as a student and hopes to bring that sentiment to the Saskatchewan legislature as the NDP candidate for Saskatoon Sutherland. A first-time candidate, Anwar says fair representation for the people is what inspired him to enter the race. “I guess it’s service to the people,” Anwar told the Sheaf. “People need fair representation instead of some interest groups” getting favourable treatment. Anwar says he was drawn to the NDP because of his interest in left-leaning social democracy. “We see affordability as the major issue in Saskatchewan
Raisa PEzderic/Photo Editor
right now,” he said, “from rent to tuition to all kinds of utilities.” The NDP has promised to enact a tuition freeze if elected. This has drawn criticism from University of Saskatchewan President Peter MacKinnon while garnering praise from the Canadian Federation of Students, a national student lobbying organization the U of S is not affiliated with. “Affordability to the student is a big concern,” Anwar said. “Freezes on wages are also an issue, because if you don’t earn [enough] you can’t live” well. In addition to a tuition freeze and an examination of how to
increase wages in the province, Anwar mentioned rent-controlled housing, which the NDP has pushed hard. It would cap rent increases at two per cent per year. Quebec has provincial rent control measures implemented similar to what the NDP might institute in Saskatchewan, given the chance. A two-bedroom apartment in Montreal costs and average of $703 per month. By contrast, Saskatoon residents pay on average $936 for a comparable apartment.
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After watching his father serve one term as a provincial MLA for the Saskatchewan Party, Paul Merriman now hopes to make his own mark as the Sask. Party candidate for Saskatoon Sutherland. Merriman is the son of Ted Merriman, who was the MLA for Saskatoon Northwest from 2003 to ’07. After one term he dropped out of politics due to family health concerns. Now, with eight years under his belt working for SaskEnergy, and as the executive director of the Saskatoon Food Bank, the younger Merriman feels he can bring fiscal responsibility and moderation to the Sask. Party. “I think the Sask. Party has a very good balance of what’s going on in the province, and
Saskatchewan Party I think that comes right from our roots, right from the conservative and liberal blend of the party that gives us that broad political spectrum,” Merriman told the Sheaf. Merriman has taken time off from his duties at the food bank to concentrate on the campaign, and specifically on door-knocking. “The riding is diverse, with lots of different issues from student housing and tuition to seniors,” said Merriman. “And, actually, Saskatoon Sutherland has a very large immigrant community.” He says he has spent a lot of time on doorsteps working through immigration and seniors issues, and also talking about health care and education. “Some people are
happy and some people are not so happy,” Merriman said. He mentioned that door-knocking during the teachers’ strike was particularly “rough,” but said that, as a father of four children, he sees both sides of the argument. According to Merriman, it is important to view the issues we are faced with by taking a step back and using common sense. He said it is about finding a balance between social programming and the importance of the economy. “We have to make sure we have the economic machine that is allowing us to generate revenue to let us have the support service programs.”
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/news
Kaleb Jeffries Saskatoon
Sutherland Saskatchewan Liberal Party supplied
Though he has been interested in politics and news for most of his life, University of Saskatchewan student Kaleb Jeffries was inspired to enter politics after meeting Saskatchewan Liberal Party leader Ryan Bater. “He’s just a normal person you can walk up and talk with,” Jeffries told the Sheaf via email. “As I became more familiar with the ideas Ryan
Bater and the Saskatchewan Liberal Party were putting forward, I recognized that we need these ideas and a new voice represented in the legislature.” Jeffries says people in Saskatchewan are growing weary of the back-andforth bickering between the Saskatchewan Party and the NDP, and that the Liberals offer a “better way to do
politics in Saskatchewan.” “I know many people in our community are tired of the two other parties constantly fighting and attacking each other, instead of focusing on practical and creative ways to secure our province’s future.” The increasing amount of debt families and students are shouldering is one of Jeffries’ pet campaign issues. The Liberal Party plans to
push for removing the income of a students’ parents from his or her eligibility for loans. Jeffries says this will allow students to “invest in education while keeping their career options open.” This year’s election will mark the first time since 1956 that the provincial Liberals haven’t fielded a full slate of candidates. Jeffries is one of only nine running for office
on Nov. 7, as the party is pouring most of its resources into party leader Ryan Bater’s constituency in the Battlefords. Jeffries was not available for a photograph.
Sutherland Green Party of Saskatchewan If you’ve noticed bicycles decorated with Green Party signs on campus and in Sutherland this fall, then it’s already a personal victory for Larry Waldinger. Waldinger is the Green Party candidate for Saskatoon Sutherland, and the man is a campaigning machine. With an election budget only a fraction of those of the two major parties, Waldinger has canvased obsessively and used unconventional advertising strategies in an attempt to be somewhat competitive in a riding traditionally dominated by the NDP and the Saskatchewan Party. “The [NDP] claim to represent the 99 per cent, while taking donations from the 1 per cent, whereas the Sask. Party is the 1 per cent, and they are the ones squeezing the 99 per cent,” Waldinger told the Sheaf, referencing the rallying cry of the Occupy protests. “The Green Party on the other hand is the 99 per cent, they represent the 99 per cent and they can only receive donations from the 99 per
cent.” Waldinger said so far he has raked in more donations than any other provincial Green candidate, with 75 per cent of total donations to the party. He hopes the connections he has made with small donors will translate into votes. Waldinger was born in Regina, grew up in Saskatoon and attended the University of Saskatchewan where he studied psychology. He later received an education degree and went on to teach grade school in Los Angeles, Calif. in the early 1990s, where he also started up his own limousine service. He moved back to Saskatoon in 2007, traded in his vehicle for a bike and now works part-time as a city bus driver. “Climate-change is our signature issue,” Waldinger said. “It has been neglected in our federal and provincial elections.” But Waldinger noted they are not a one-issue party. He said the Green Party of Saskatchewan is strongly pushing for lower
postsecondary education costs and called the “corporatization” of the U of S a “major concern.” According to their platform, a Green government will restore provincial funding to school districts, restore funding to postsecondary institutions and eliminate tuition over four years. Waldinger also feels resource royalties need to be drastically increased and the tax system reformed to better accommodate low-income families. He admits it’s a “David versus Goliath” battle, but nonetheless appears optimistic that the distribution of wealth will someday be more equal in Canada. “We can do whatever we want. We are a powerful, highly technologically advanced civilization. Only two per cent of our production is used for food, so I consider the other 98 per cent of what we do as discretionary.”
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thesheaf.com/news • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Separating Information From Identity
has turned our identities into zeroes and ones — but at what cost? RYAN BELBIN The Muse (Memorial University of Newfoundland) ST. JOHN'S (CUP) —Just as the prominence of the World Wide Web has changed drastically, so too has its “raison d’être” — it has gone from a database to a hub of real-time communication and social networks. It spreads ideas, news coverage and multimedia across geographical boundaries instantly, and researchers are constantly trying to make it even more streamlined and efficient. According to a recent study by the Miniwatts Marketing Group, nearly 80 per cent of
North Americans are online — some 270 million of us. The multifaceted nexus of computers that is the Internet has been steadily expanding since coming to the public’s attention at the end of the 20th century. It has evolved from a technological novelty to a virtual necessity for billions of users worldwide. One of the most interesting discussions on the changing landscape of the Internet focuses not so much on its content, but rather on the users themselves. Who are you when you log onto the web?
virtual world Face-to-face interaction between people is completely different compared to when a computer screen and modem separates them. Judith Donath — founder of the Sociable Media Group at the MIT Media Lab, which is concerned with how individuals function in a virtual sphere — wrote on the subject more than 10 years ago in her essay, Identity and Deception in the Virtual Community. For her, the removal of a physical presence in online interaction is related to the disintegration of user accountability and the abandonment of regular social behaviour. “In the physical world, there is an inherent unity to the self, for the body provides a compelling and convenient definition of
Every email you send and every post you make online is rubberstamped with an Internet Protocol, or IP, address. This address can be traced by others — although, without a court order, even the most programming-savvy users can only get a relative idea of who you are, such as what province you live in or who your Internet service provider is. In other words, the Internet gives you access to a worldwide forum where you are virtually an anonymous being. The concept of anonymity isn’t even relatively new. People have been finding reason to obscure their identities for centuries, and for many different reasons. In some cases, anonymity gives people an opportunity to voice their honest opinions and concerns, without fear of repercussions or prosecution. One of the most prominent writers of the Victorian period was a woman named Mary Anne Evans — although you most likely know her by her pseudonym, George Eliot. This “nom de plume” helped hide her gender, which allowed her work to be taken seriously in
her own time, and helped ensure her a spot in the Western literary canon. That is not to say that the ability to fade into anonymous obscurity should be an unquestionable human right. Think of robberies where criminals’ faces are obscured in an attempt to evade legal consequences — a rise in anonymity can be strongly linked to a decline in responsibility. Social psychology finds a similar idea at work during riots, where people feel that the crowd functions as a faceless whole, rather than a sum of its parts. The consequences of anonymity are very different when it takes place online rather than in a physical reality. Considering that a huge number of websites on the Internet have the option for creating personal user profiles, which can then be used to communicate with other users and to post on public topics, people are increasingly using the web to create an online identity.
far can a
joke go? Under the guise of anonymity, users are free to be as outrageously racist, violent and profane as they can imagine. More than a few do just that. The ability for users of social media websites such as Facebook to create pages in support of special interest groups has led to the formation of memorial pages in honour of deceased friends and family members. These pages provide a forum for users to upload pictures and post personal messages as a means of consolation. Their public nature also means that anyone can access them. It’s an increasingly common practice for Internet trolls, completely apathetic to mourning friends and family members, to seek out such memorial pages and
yours From the safety of your computer chair, you have the power to create a profile in a virtual realm where you can ruin someone’s reputation, be yourself victimized, work against it or stand by on the sidelines and watch it all happen. It sounds like a computer roleplaying game, but some of the realities of the 21st century are ultimately stranger than fiction.
identity,” she explained. “The virtual world is different. It is composed of information rather than matter.” Browsing news websites, it’s not uncommon to see comments turn to personal attacks — comments that one could not imagine actually saying to the person’s face, given the opportunity. A recognizable incident of these types of comments is the recent Rebecca Black fiasco. Black was only 13 years old in March when the music video for her song “Friday” became a viral sensation after being uploaded to YouTube. “Friday,” even after being removed and replaced, is still the most disliked video on YouTube. User comments — which literally came in seconds apart when the video peaked in popularity — ranged from contemptuous to outright malicious.
“Those hurtful comments really shocked me,” Black went on to say to the Daily Beast. “At times, it feels like I’m being cyberbullied.” At its most severe level, Internet anonymity has given rise to a classification of users known colloquially as “trolls.” These users frequent YouTube, Facebook and other forumbased websites, posting flagrant comments solely to elicit emotional responses from other users. Trolling can be as harmless as poking fun at a song in hopes of garnering angry rebuttals from fans, generating another Internet coinage, a “flame war.” This is something Internet trolls do solely “for the lulz,” an online catchphrase that basically means “for the sake of comedy.”
vandalize them with disrespectful images and comments. The worst part is that, despite calls for increased Internet regulations, the trolls are still legally permitted to harass these grieving people. The worst consequence available is a ban on the social networking website, although it only takes another name and email address to start a new account and begin the harassment again. Born from some of the same websites that helped establish the concept of Internet trolls, a group of users styling themselves as “Anonymous” wreak similar havoc on the online community, albeit in a much more organized fashion. Like trolls, the endeavours of Anonymous have repercussions in the real world. From collaborative mischief — on May 20, 2009, they uploaded pornographic videos to YouTube, disguised as family-friendly content — to plaguing major corporate websites
such as MasterCard and PayPal, in what is known as a DDoS attack. In some of these cases, several arrests have been made across the globe. Nonetheless, the issue of online anonymity is extremely complicated. The online communal nature of the Internet has made it easy for vigilantes to send photographs and information related to criminals (think of the online response to the recent London riots, where images of rioters were posted on photo-sharing websites), and law enforcement agencies have been paying attention. Protesters in the recent revolutions roiling the Middle East also owe something to the Internet as a tool for rallying support.
The unprecedented peak in online activity has demanded that laws be updated to accommodate the new challenges presented by the Internet, but balancing anonymity and privacy remains a tricky problem in contemporary society. Just as Danish police are currently pushing to disrupt the anonymous nature of the Internet in Denmark, thousands of users applaud the World Wide Web for its ability to protect real-life identities, calling it the ultimate form of free expression.
Wherever you stand on the issue, you could always post your opinions on Twitter, Facebook, message boards or any number of other public forums on the Internet, and be completely anonymous and open with your thoughts — just as long as you know that your readers will be too.
Opinions •7 Super-rich Canadians are screwing all of us
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/opinions
Or: how I learned to start worrying and hate plutocracy MICHAEL CUTHBERTSON Opinions Editor This month’s Occupy movement has been criticized in the media as aimless and ineffective. I’ll admit, the shantytowns and bearded hippies make this look more like a county fair than a political revolution. But their mission — to reclaim the power and wealth hoarded by society’s richest one per cent — is something 99 per cent of us should stand behind. There’s a myth going around that the movement doesn’t concern Canada. According to Conservative minister Ted Menzies, “Canada does not, by the way, have the degree of economic inequality that we are seeing in other countries that have perhaps started this movement.” But a groundbreaking report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives tells a different story. Canada’s economic inequality is worse than it has been for generations. It reveals that Canada’s “incomes are as concentrated in the hands of the richest one per cent today as they were in the Roaring Twenties.” And while Canadians bust their asses to strengthen “our” economy, we’re mostly strengthening the one per cent. From 1997 to 2007, Canada saw the fastest growth in income since the ’50s. Of this growth, the richest one per cent took home 32 per cent of it! The numbers don’t lie. Wealth no longer flows or even “trickles down” to the bottom 99 per cent of us. We need a movement that demands economic reform. Otherwise, the one per cent will only consolidate their power even further. For decades now, the one per cent have been getting a bigger and bigger slice of Canada’s income. According to StatsCan, in 1982 they took home 7.4 per cent of it. By 2007 they claimed 12.3 per cent of it. So next time you see a rich person, be respectful — we average Canadians are only worth a fraction of what they are. But crafty capitalists can almost justify this inequality. Arguably the one per cent earn more today because they’re more business-savvy and ingenious. Not like it has something to do with exploiting the other 99 per cent. I say rich people deserve their fortune. Maybe if the rest
Brianna Whitmore/Graphics Editor
of us would just work a little harder, we’d be rich too. Let’s assume this tough-love capitalism is good, that one per cent of us ought to own yachts while other Canadians go without food or shelter. It’s still hard to justify the generous tax cuts some yacht-owning yuppies enjoy today. Back in 1948, Canadians in the highest tax bracket paid a marginal tax rate of 80 per cent. Today, averaged across Canada, the highest tax bracket pays a mere 42.9 per cent. It’s absurd that, when the richest Canadians became even richer, we lowered their taxes. The least our stinkin’ rich can do is pay hefty taxes to a nation that blesses them more than ever before. Don’t forget, this one per cent took home 32 per cent of our economy’s growth in income last decade. There’s no denying these aristocrats are climbing higher and higher above us peasantfolk.
The most startling figure in the CCPA’s report shows that, if we distributed things equally, every Canadian would be pretty damned rich. In 2005, the median wealth of a Canadian household was $148,400 annually. If Canada distributed its wealth equally, every household would make $364,300 a year. Maybe we couldn’t all get yachts, sure, but every single Canadian could certainly afford a nice home, a car and university for their kids. Now you capitalists would be right to redflag this as commie-talk. I wouldn’t even support such extreme wealth redistribution. We need a compromise, something between socialism and our current “screw-the-masses” brand of capitalism. It’s like Barack Obama told protesters, we can “challenge the excesses of Wall Street without demonizing all who work there.” I appreciate that Canada’s economy created jobs and wealth during a time of global
Native Literature since 1980 an afternoon with Tomson Highway The University of Saskatchewan invites you to join international playwright, novelist and pianist/ songwriter Tomson Highway for a presentation on native literature with a question and answer to follow.
Thursday, November 3, 2011 2 p.m., Convocation Hall University of Saskatchewan
OPEN TO THE PUBLIC Proudly sponsored by: Aboriginal Students’ Centre ■ Special Advisor to the President on Aboriginal Initiatives ■ College of Arts and Science Department of Humanities and Fine Arts ■ Department of Native Studies ■ Humanities Research Unit ■ Department of English Drama Department ■ Aboriginal Education Research Centre (AERC) ■ Interdisciplinary Centre for Culture and Creativity
recession. But Occupy protesters aren’t suggesting we tear down our whole economic system. They only ask that we trim the “excesses” of a teeny-tiny minority. We need new policy. We need to cut the excess fat off our one per cent’s bloated bellies. Certainly we can put some limit on the plutocracy’s wealth and power — and still let them make shit-loads of money. Higher taxes are the first step. It’s not like these billionaires will lose all profit incentive if we returned to an 80 per cent tax on the super-rich. I’m sure they’ll scrape by. Mostly we need policy that reflects this reality: Canada’s economic structure isn’t held up by CEOs on the top floor — it’s held up by everyone working on the lower 99 floors. One rich guy may seem powerful. But put him against 99 furious peasants and, suddenly, he’s not so big.
thesheaf.com/opinions • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Every vote counts
There is no excuse for voter apathy on Nov. 7 Alexander Quon On Nov. 7 residents of Saskatchewan will go to the polls to vote for new leadership. Unfortunately, it is all too often in Canada that we neglect the freedom to choose the people who lead us. Recent events in the Middle East, primarily that of the Arab Spring, have brought to light the fact that people in other countries do not live the same lives that we do. That is not to
say that no one paid attention to the regimes in distant places, but instead some choose to be blissfully ignorant of the problems others face. In countries such as Libya, citizens had lived under a repressive dictatorship for over 40 years; they could not voice their problems without fear of reprisals, could not choose a new leader or show discontent. Here in Canada we face no such problems. If we have an issue we can protest; if we don’t like the person who leads us we can elect
another. The problem that we face in Canada is that many choose not to vote. In the 2008 federal election only 58.8 per cent of those who were eligible to vote did so, making that the lowest voter turnout in Canadian federal election history. This year’s election, with the so-called “Orange Crush” and heightened interest, only resulted in a turnout of 61.1 per cent. For a country that takes pride in its freedom, that number is almost
sHOW UP & VOTE OUR PROVinciaL ELEcTiOn is MOnday, nOVEMbER 7, 2011.
or an agency of one of these entities bearing the individual’s name ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS (with name and address)
This election all voters must show satisfactory proof of their identity and their place of ordinary residence. Acceptable ID can be Photo ID issued by a government agency with your name and address (i.e. driver’s licence) or two original pieces of the following authorized identification (both pieces must have your name and one must also have your address): VALID ORIGINAL IDENTIFICATION DOCUMENTS • Birth Certificate • Canadian Blood Services Donor Card • Canadian Passport • Certificate of Canadian Citizenship (Citizenship Card) issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada • Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) client card bearing the individual’s photograph and signature or a card bearing the individual’s photograph and signature issued by any registered charitable organization that provides services to persons with disabilities • Credit Card issued by a bank or credit union • Debit Card issued by a bank or credit union • Identification issued by the Canada Border Services Agency • Identification issued by Canadian Air Transportation Security Agency (CATSA) • Identification Card issued by Canadian Forces • Employee Card issued by the Government of Canada, the Government of Saskatchewan, a school division or an Indian band in Saskatchewan, or an agency of one of these entities • Firearm Possession and Acquisition Licence or Possession Only Licence issued pursuant to the Firearms Act • Fishing, Trapping or Hunting Licence issued pursuant to The Fisheries (Saskatchewan) Act, 1994 or The Wildlife Act • Hospital bracelet • Métis Nation Status Card issued by the Métis Nation – Saskatchewan • Old Age Security Card issued pursuant to the Old Age Security Act • Pleasure Craft Operators Licence issued pursuant to the Canada Shipping Act • Parole Card • Passport of a Foreign State • Radio Operator Card or Certificate issued by Industry Canada • Saskatchewan Driver’s Licence issued pursuant to The Traffic Safety Act • Saskatchewan Health Services Card issued pursuant to The Department of Health Act • Social Insurance Number Card issued by the Government of Canada • Student Identification Card issued by a post-secondary institution regulated by a Saskatchewan Act • Union Identification Card • Veterans Affairs Canada Health Identification Card • Voter ID card issued by an election officer or enumerator • Wildlife Habitat Certificate • Any other piece of identification issued by the Government of Canada, the Government of Saskatchewan, a Saskatchewan Municipality, a school division or an Indian band in Saskatchewan,
TOLL-FREE 1-877-958-8683 ELECT-0032A_newsprint_6x160.indd 1
• Admission Form that is in a form acceptable to the Chief Electoral Officer and that is issued by the authority responsible for a shelter, soup kitchen, student or seniors residence or a facility designated as a health centre pursuant to The Facilities Designation Regulations that provides long-term care • Attestation of Residence that is in a form acceptable to the Chief Electoral Officer and that is issued by the authority responsible for a student or seniors residence or a facility designated as a health centre pursuant to The Facilities Designation Regulations that provides long-term care • Bank Card Statement issued by a bank or credit union • Blank cheque bearing the individual’s name and address • Bill issued by Saskatchewan Power Corporation, SaskEnergy, Saskatchewan Telecommunications or a municipality • Credit Card Statement issued by a bank or credit union • Certificate of Title issued by the Information Services Corporation • Certificate of vehicle registration issued pursuant to The Traffic Safety Act • Correspondence issued by a post-secondary institution regulated by a Saskatchewan Act • Document issued or certified by a court in Canada • Government Cheque or Cheque Stub issued by the Government of Canada, the Government of Saskatchewan, a Saskatchewan municipality, a school division or an Indian band in Saskatchewan, or an agency of one of these entities • Income Tax Assessment Notice issued by the Canada Revenue Agency • Insurance Policy • Letter from the Public Guardian and Trustee • Letter of stay that is in a form acceptable to the Chief Electoral Officer and that is issued by the authority responsible for a shelter, soup kitchen or a facility designated as a health centre pursuant to The Facilities Designation Regulations that provides long-term care • Pay cheque or receipt issued by an employer • Pension Plan Statement of Benefits, Contributions or Participation • Property Tax Assessment Notice or a Tax Notice issued by a municipality • Residential Lease or Mortgage Statement • Statement of Government Benefits (employment insurance, old age security, social assistance, disability support or child tax benefit) issued by the Government of Canada or the Government of Saskatchewan • Statement of Crop Insurance issued by the Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corporation • Statement issued by the Workers’ Compensation Board • Voter identification card issued by a Saskatchewan municipality that shows name and address If you are unable to show ID you can still vote by taking an oath and have an eligible voter vouch for your identity and place of ordinary residence (both of you will be required to make a sworn statement). The person vouching for you must have valid authorized identification. This person can only vouch for one person. Examples would be a neighbour, your roommate, etc. If you know anyone who is unable to read or is visually impaired, please make them aware of the content of this message. Individuals with hearing or speech impairment can call TTY 1.855.281.4491.
ELEcTiOns.sk.ca 11-10-19 8:34 AM
unacceptable. Many complain that they do not or will not vote because they believe their vote does not really matter, that it is merely a drop in the bucket when winners are decided by the thousands. That is only partially true; while some ridings are decided by a wide margin, others have come down to a difference of only 25 votes — that means every individual vote counts and every citizen’s voice can be heard. On Nov. 7, if you’re over 18,
take half an hour out of your day and cast a vote because it truly does matter. Celebrate the freedom you have to choose and enjoy the fact that you can make a difference without taking up arms, or fearing retribution for your actions. This is after all a democratic society where freedom is the main objective.
Follow the evidence Studies show cellphones don’t cause cancer ISHMAEL N. DARO Editor-in-Chief A new Danish study, published in the British Journal of Medicine, shows conclusively that there is no link between cellphone usage and brain cancer. And it won’t change anything. The problem is that once you take on a belief like cellphones causing cancer, scientific evidence won’t easily sway you. The same goes for people who think vaccines cause autism or that climate change is a huge scam perpetrated by greedy governments and windmill makers. In the Danish study, 358,403 people were tracked for almost two decades and the findings are unequivocal: cellphone users were at no higher risk than noncellphone users for brain tumors. It is the latest in a series of studies showing no or low risk from cellphone usage. There has been a vocal minority that has, for years, argued that cellphone signals cause cancers in heavy phone users. They have (rightly) been ignored since there was no evidence to support the claim. The latest study will hopefully shut these people up for good, even if it doesn’t change their minds. Could there be research in the future that does find a cancer link? Of course, and we should be open to changing our thinking based on such evidence. The scientific method ensures that researchers always challenge their own assumptions and follow the research to whatever conclusions are reached. But given the low rate of scientific literacy these days, people are much more comfortable clinging to their ideas and ignoring facts to the contrary. To some degree, it is human nature to stick to our guns and fight for our beliefs, but this is precisely the wrong way to approach scientific questions. For example, the residents of Calgary and Waterloo will no longer have their water fluoridated because some alarmists convinced their local politicians that fluoride
was dangerous. They join a number of municipalities that have banned fluoridation over the last decade. In truth, fluoridation is one of the cheapest and most effective public health policies ever devised, preventing the sort of debilitating tooth decay previous generations had to worry about. But because know-nothings can always wave the word “chemical” around, all sorts of anti-scientific fear-mongering becomes law. Think of how much time and energy climate skeptics put into “debunking” the science behind climate change. Each study that comes out further cements what the vast majority of scientists have agreed on for decades, that human activity is rapidly warming the globe. Yet, to deniers, it’s all a conspiracy and the foot-dragging we see from such ideologues continues to slow the development of renewable technologies and continues our reliance on fossil fuels. There are many issues on which reasonable people can disagree, even vehemently. But on questions of science, let’s trust the experts and let’s trust the science. The activists are louder and more committed than the vast majority of us, but it’s still our collective responsibility to follow the evidence on important matters. So next time someone tries to tell you about the dangers of cellphones, vaccines, fluoride, microwave radiation, jellybeans or anything else based on faulty logic, kindly remind this person about the dangers of being an idiot.
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/opinions
Understanding the unique language of texting Kimberley Hartwig “Texting is ruining language.” This is a very familiar statement that finds backing from scholars and laymen alike, but is there any truth to the statement? Granted, texting does break many “grammar rules” by often disposing with punctuation and utilizing abbreviations but texting isn’t really ruining the English language. Rather, it teaches another form of language altogether. Texting combines the informal, ungrammatical markers of speech with the characters of writing to create a whole new type of communication. Texting is not like speaking on the phone, where the tone of a person’s voice conveys meaning, or like conversing with someone in person, where both tone and body language can communicate intent. Texting is also different than written language as texting does not require formality or an adherence to the rules of grammar or spelling. It involves a different kind of communication, a mix of both the spoken and the written contained on a cell screen. One important element of communication that texting is forced to exclude is the nonverbal. Psychologists say that body language and other non-verbal cues accounts for 55 per cent of how we communicate. The tone we use accounts for 38 per cent and the words we use only account for 7 per cent. If it’s more important how we say something than what we’re actually saying, how can texting adequately transfer meaning from one phone to another without these all-important cues? The only way to derive emotion or meaning from a text message is to read between the lines, to use the nuances of language to determine meaning. Is someone being serious or trying to be funny? Sarcastic or just mean? The meaning and interpretation of a text can hinge on a single word, which means things can easily be lost in translation.
I can speak in txts plz?
Reading body language has become a science, with articles explaining what gestures as simple as a tilt of the head can mean, so perhaps text reading will become a science too. It is already, in its own way, a pseudoscience. I doubt there is any person who has not turned to a friend or a number of friends to attempt deciphering the meaning of a text. Amongst my friends it’s common practice to hold a forum because texts are so open to interpretation and often difficult to read. It’s easy to spend hours poring over a text, closely examining the syntax and diction but still, you’re usually just speculating. And most likely, you’re wrong. Just like the “science” of body language is often ridiculous — a suspiciously long blink apparently means someone is lying, while I think it means they’re falling asleep — sometimes it’s better to take a text at face value
and save the analyzing for English class. Texting even has its own rules of communication and its own etiquette. How long is an appropriate response time? Should it be directly proportional to the time it took the other to respond or should it be doubled? How long should a text be? As concise or as detailed as possible? And the all-important, how soon is too soon to include a winky face? Each person has an opinion on what is appropriate and what is not appropriate for the realm of SMS. Much like each person is easily identifiable by their voice and manner of speech, people can also be easily identified by the texts they send. Texting is as unique to an individual as the words they use in everyday conversation. There are those whose texts are almost unintelligible, filled with so many abbreviations and shorthands that they require translation.
There are also those who use an inordinate number of emoticons, and those who seem to answer before you’ve even sent the text. No two people text the same way. Everyone has a unique style, just like everyone has a distinct writing style. To me, aptitude in texting is based on a few factors: response time, relevance of text and wittiness of text. Response time and relevance have less to do with style but if someone’s texts are always dull and boring, they can expect to get few of them in return from me. Texting in itself has evolved since its inception and so has the texter. The language is always changing, new words are added and old words become out of date just like established languages, and texters even have their own sociolects and dialects. Texting is more a reflection of individual differences in language that it is a universal language we all share. I can tell who sent almost any text in my inbox without needing to see the author because most people text like they speak with some time-saving devices like acronyms and lack of punctuation thrown in for ease of communication. It’s never correct to say that someone who texts doesn’t know how to write because texting presupposes literacy. It would be nearly impossible to understand all the acronyms and misspelled words if the texter didn’t have a basic understanding of the language. Each person uses texting differently to achieve different means in much the same way that speaking and writing are individual to the user. Just like someone can be can be a good or bad writer, someone can be a good or bad texter. It’s more correct to say that if someone knows how to text well they know how to write.
A win for Western Canadian farmers The end has come for the Canadian Wheat Board monopoly Spencer Fernando The Manitoban (University of Manitoba) WINNIPEG (CUP) — As students, we have the right to freely market our skills. If you are seeking a master's in business administration, you can market yourself to countless businesses; if you are an artist, you can share your work and attempt to sell it at various galleries and stores. Imagine a different scenario. What if you were required to submit your skills or products to a board that would then decide where and to whom your product could be sold or your skills utilized? What if this board stripped you of your rights and demanded instead that you submit to its will? I think you would rightfully see this as an infringement on your freedom and your rights. This scenario is not imaginary. It exists in a large sector of our economy. It is exactly the situation western farmers are currently facing. Western Canadian farmers do not enjoy the same rights as other farmers in Canada. They are unable to freely market the products that result from their labour. The Canadian Wheat Board holds a monopoly over Western Canada’s grain market — or more specifically, a monopsony: an economy in which there is only one buyer. The CWB likes to refer to itself as “the single desk,” which is a nice name for a coercive enterprise. The CWB is a monopoly because it does not allow
competition, and it is coercive because farmers are forced to give their grain to the CWB unless they are using it for animal feed. Thankfully, the CWB regime will soon be brought to an end. There are some who claim the wheat board is being “destroyed.” This statement, though good at garnering media coverage, is factually incorrect. The wheat board will still exist, and if it is able to compete in the free market it will exist indefinitely. If it is unable to succeed in the free market, this will be a sign it was inefficient in the first place, and we will be better off with new options. Some people will point to the results of the CWB “plebiscite” — another word for referendum — and claim the 62 per cent of wheat farmers who voted to retain “the single desk” should have the power to maintain the CWB as it currently stands. But the results of the plebiscite do not include those farmers who wished to retain their marketing freedom and chose not to farm wheat and barley. The CWB was able to choose the eligible voters for the plebiscite, as well as formulate the question those voters saw on the ballot. The more fundamental question is this: do some wheat and barley farmers have the right to infringe upon the freedoms of others? In Canada, we believe people should be free to decide what they do unless those decisions harm others. Why would we ignore this fundamental principle when it comes to Western Canadian farmers?
Nobody is hurt by allowing farmers to freely market the products they worked to produce. Limiting the freedom of farmers goes against a Canadian principle. The CWB doesn’t serve the public. It serves only to protect the narrow interests of a small group of people. Those who support the CWB monopoly should ask themselves if they would enjoy monopoly control over their own lives. Unless they would be willing to give up their own rights to market
their skills or products, they should not demand that western farmers do the same. The end of the Canadian Wheat Board monopoly restores the rights of western farmers and shows we respect the freedom of individuals to control their own labour and the products of that labour. It is the right thing to do, not just economically, but also because it lives up to the principles upon which Canada is built.
thesheaf.com/opinions • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Scary movies aren’t scary
Interview with a psychic
Cinema perpetuates irrational fears
The Sheaf gets a glimpse of the future
Footloose: the scariest movie of all-time?
MICHAEL CUTHBERTSON Opinions Editor I used to be terrified by horror movies until I realized there’s nothing to fear in them. Honestly, when is the last time you were chased by an axe-wielding maniac to the sounds of violins and cellos? Final exams, terminal illnesses and dying alone – now these are legitimate fears. But people are highly suggestible, and horror movies are all too effective at filling us with irrational fear. Don’t lie, you’ve probably checked behind your shower curtain for murderers before. You also know teens boning in parked cars at night always get slaughtered. Go skinnydipping at night, and you’re bound to get killed. Horror movies convince us that certain settings are spookier than others. Even in real life, people get a tingly feeling being in graveyards or the woods or stormy weather. But there’s no basis for this. One night my friends and I took a walk outside the city when, suddenly, we saw a lady approaching us from deep in the woods. We nearly crapped our pants. (Other things also enhanced our paranoia, but I won’t get into that.) Afterwards, we felt stupid about it. A stranger walking by us only looked scary because this was the deep, dark woods — a place where trees assault women and zombies burst out of the ground (as demonstrated in Evil Dead). But a month camping alone in the woods
NASA Goddard Photo and Video/Flickr
made me realize there’s nothing scary out there. Still, it took me a while to shake old fears. Seeing The Blair Witch Project made it pretty creepy walking the woods at night with nothing but a little flashlight. A greater absurdity is our fear of graveyards. It’s common for kids to play with Oujia boards or conduct séances in them, but why? Graveyards are just well-maintained green space. Sure, there’s a bunch of dead people under that green space but what are they going to get us with? Skeleton power? One time I went biking with a friend through a graveyard and was surprised when it didn’t feel scary or even gloomy. Actually, the place seemed pretty peaceful. I admit though, I would have felt differently at night. Then I’d probably start picturing Romero-esque zombies chasing after me and my delicious brains. Perhaps all the supernatural beings in horror cinema only symbolize our real fears. Maybe it’s not really the ghosts and zombies that scare us, but what they remind us of — death and the loss of a soul, for example. Even if we don’t believe people can be possessed by demons, it makes sense to fear something that controls your mind and forces you to do evil. While I’ve grown highly desensitized to scary movies, I wish I hadn’t. I’d love to be shaken by them again, to develop silly fears of television white noise and diabolical clowns. Maybe a horror movie that addresses more relatable human fears would freak me out. Imagine a scary movie about public speaking, or credit card debt. Just the thought of it chills me.
Brianna Whitmore/Graphics Editor
HELENA ROSALES It was three in the afternoon and the grey, overcast sky chilled the air, almost foreshadowing what I would feel in a few minutes’ time. Tapping my fingers anxiously on my oak table, I sat with overflowing anticipation for my interview with the psychic Betsy Balega. There is a lot of hype about gypsies, psychics, spiritual detectives and other conduits to that realm we have no clue about. Many question whether their powers are real, or if they are simply myths fuelled by ignorance. The phone buzzed on the tabletop as I entered the realm of otherworldly phenomena. Balega tells me she has been a “psychic” since about the age of four, when she had her first vision. “I thought everybody was seeing the future, that everybody was experiencing this and it was a part of life,” she said. At that, I injected my own unearthly experience into the conversation. When I was 10, I saw what appeared to be the ghost of my dead dog in my darkened bedroom. Balega tells me that I will see my dog again. I’m not sure if I like thinking about this glorious reunion, but at least I have the comfort of my furry friend being there, welcoming my spirit into the ethereal afterworld. Balega explains that as she got older, she learned that the people around her were not having “visions of the future,” as she calls it, and says that her “As a teenager, I began to have more psychic experiences.” It was her fascination with the unseen world, and her ability to tap into it, that led to her tutelage under a medium named Mary Polis at the age of 24. Balega was taught in all of the psychic routes, like healing and reading angels. “We meditated every week for half an hour. After that we had a break, and then we would
go healing one week, angel spirit guide another, and astral travel in another,” Balega said. “We did past lives, seeing your aura and finally the last class was a séance.” Balega claims she has done readings for a number of famous or influential people, including the staff at The Amazing Race, Grey’s Anatomy and staff from the Prime Minister’s Office in 1992 — which is what got her solving crime with her supernatural prowess. Somebody from the PMO visited Balega and told her how a woman from the PMO committed suicide. Shortly thereafter, Balega had a vision of an ice cream truck and a woman that kept saying to her, “Get my husband’s car, you’ll find DNA evidence in the trunk.” Balega’s vision of an ice cream truck was an eerie one since it was said to be the last place the woman was spotted. Balega became convinced that this apparent suicide was not as it seemed. She tried convincing the police to re-open the case. Her plea was denied, but to this day, she believes the case was inaccurately concluded. Balega also takes credit for helping solve the murder of a man named Mike James — a case she helped with after the man came to her in a vision. “Psychics assist in solving crime but it’s the actual police that solve the crime,” Balega said. Balega said it’s usually the families of victims who contact her, as happened with James, whose murder took place in Toronto last year. The psychic, who lives in Toronto, says everyone has a “sixth sense” and that it’s only a matter of practicing to start seeing the results. “I’ve practiced so long it’s like breathing,” Balega said.
October 27 , 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/sports
Huskies football clinches playoff spot Despite nine fumbles, Dogs win close one in Regina COLE GUENTER Few teams can figure out how to win when they fumble the ball nine times in one game, but the University of Saskatchewan Huskies weren’t afraid to try on Oct. 22 under the lights of Mosaic Stadium in Regina. The Huskies, who were lucky that the Regina Rams only recovered three of their nine fumbles, barely hung on to clinch a playoff spot in a 16-15 victory over the Rams. Despite their clumsy hands, the Dogs still managed to tally 269 yards total on offence — 22 yards better than Regina’s total even though the Rams’ offence had nearly 8 more minutes on the field than the Huskies. Saskatchewan’s defence set the tone early by picking up one of their two interceptions in the game on the Rams’ second play. This gave the offence a short field to work with and allowed running back Ben Coakwell to run the ball into the end zone from seven yards out, opening the scoring for the Huskies. The Rams got on the board early in the second quarter after kicker Chris Bodnar matched Huskies kicker Stephen McDonald’s rouge punt for a single point. A botched Huskies snap only a few minutes later gave the ball to Regina on Saskatchewan’s 17-yard line. Rams running back Adrian Charles capped the five-play drive with a short oneyard plunge for the Rams’ only touchdown of the game. Bodnar would put up another single point and boot a 30-yard field goal to put the Rams ahead 12-8 at halftime. The second half started slow, as the third quarter only yielded one point on a punt from McDonald. It would prove, however, to be a valuable point in the end for the Huskies. The Huskies kept with their two man quarterback system as Jahlani Gilbert-Knorren started the game
while Trent Peterson relieved him of his duties late in the first half. Peterson had a dominating performance this week. He started the fourth quarter with a 70yard catch and run play to Rory Kohlert that, combined with a Regina penalty, got the ball down to Regina’s one-yard line. A oneyard quarterback sneak gave the Huskies a lead they wouldn’t give up. It came close, however, when Saskatchewan had the ball on third down with only five seconds left in the game. They wanted to punt it away and let the clock run out, but McDonald fumbled the snap. It was a wild chase for the ball and Regina got possession, but with no time remaining on the clock it was too late for the Rams. Defensively, the Dogs were solid once more. Besides allowing only one touchdown, linebackers Tom Lynch and Tony Michalchuk combined for 19 tackles. Michalchuk also had a sack and the interception that led to the Huskies’ first touchdown. Cornerback Mitch Friesen made the other interception. If the Huskies can win their next game against Alberta, they will finish no lower than third place. A win combined with a UBC loss to Calgary would give the Huskies second spot. A UBC win would put Saskatchewan in third regardless of how the Dogs play against Alberta. If the Dogs lose to Alberta, they will also finish in third place unless Manitoba beats the Rams, in which case the Dogs could drop down to fourth spot — which still qualifies them for playoffs.
Jahlani Gilbert-Knorren jukes and jives past a Rams defender.
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file photo Raisa Pezderic/Photo Editor
thesheaf.com/sports • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Kyle Bortis scores overtime winner Huskies men’s hockey redeems surprising loss to Pronghorns KEVIN MENZ Sports Editor The Huskies men’s hockey team was caught off guard this past weekend at the Credit Union Centre as they suffered a surprising loss to the Lethbridge Pronghorns Oct. 21 and were forced to redeem it with an overtime victory on the next night. The Dogs had already defeated the Pronghorns twice this season — 5-1 in preseason action and 5-2 in their league opener — and had a 3-0 lead after two periods in their last meeting on Oct. 1 before play was suspended due to ice resurfacing problems. This weekend was a different story. Lethbridge handed the Huskies their first loss of the season with a 3-1 win on Friday. “Lethbridge is a good team,” said Huskies forward Kyle Bortis. “They stuck to their game plan and worked really hard. On our turnovers, they capitalized.” Daniel Iwanski opened the scoring early for Lethbridge by burying one past Huskies goaltender David Reekie in the sixth minute. Cass Mappin added two more for the Pronghorns to give them a 3-0 lead that carried late into the third period. Travis Brisebois was the only Huskie to beat Lethbridge netminder Scott Bowles, but his powerplay goal with just under three minutes to play in the game was too late to spark a Dogs’ comeback. Bowles put up 30 saves in the win while Reekie had 18. Huskies head coach Dave Adolph said that despite the loss, he was not surprised to see such a strong showing from the Pronghorns. “Lethbridge beat us three out of four times last year, so it’s not uncommon to play the Pronghorns and have an ultimate battle,” he said. “We respect them an awful lot and every time we play them it goes down to the wire.” This was, of course, what happened in the teams’ second meeting of the weekend as the match pushed into overtime and was won with only six seconds left on the clock. Bortis buried the 3-2 overtime winner just over Bowles’ shoulder after receiving a perfect pass through the slot from Derek Hulak. “We didn’t want to go to overtime, but we found a way to
Kyle Bortis tries to sneak one past Pronghorn goaltender Scott Bowles.
win,” said Bortis. “Hulak put it right on my tape and I just had to put it in the net.” “Hulak made an NHL play and it’s pretty easy to bury that one,” added Adolph of Bortis’s game winner. The Huskies gave up a weak goal early in the game after the Pronghorns’ Nick Hotson put a low blue line shot past Dogs goaltender Ryan Holfeld. Saskatchewan would come back shortly thereafter, however, by scoring two quick goals. Captain Kyle Ross buried one from Bortis and Hulak with 1:20 to play in the first frame while Andrew Bailey would add the second after potting a rebound from a Brennan Bosch shot only 34 seconds later. “Tonight I think we had enough chances and I think we were
fortunate to bury on those chances,” said Bortis after the game. The second and third periods were slow as the Huskies meticulously controlled the puck but couldn’t capitalize on their chances. Lethbridge didn’t have many chances but were able to tie it up early in the third period. It would sit at 2-2 until Bortis scored his overtime winner. Holfeld regained his composure after letting in the initial weak goal to put up 25 saves for the Dogs. Bowles had 32 for the Pronghorns.
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/sports
Huskies hoops take third straight title Dogs win annual Graham Shootout during preseason action at home KEVIN MENZ Sports Editor With its superstars out of the lineup, the Huskies men’s basketball team still managed to win its third straight Graham Shootout title this past weekend at the Physical Activity Complex. The Shootout is an annual preseason round-robin tournament in which the Dogs host four top-10 teams from across Canada. Graham Construction has sponsored the tournament since 2008. Saskatchewan finished this year’s shootout with a 2-1 record by defeating the Acadia Axemen 84-69 and the Alberta Golden Bears 7874 but falling 91-83 to the Windsor Lancers. While the Lancers did defeat the Huskies, their 1-2 record kept them out of title contention. Saskatchewan — despite finishing with the same record as the 2-1 Bears — were crowned winners because they had defeated Alberta in the round-robin. The Axemen also finished with a 1-2 record. Huskies’ top forward Michael Lieffers did not play in the tournament because he was playing for team Canada at the Pan-Am games in Mexico. All-star guard Jamelle Barrett was out with a knee injury. “We need Barrett healthy for conference play, so there is no point in trying to bring him back too soon,” said Huskies head coach Barry Rawlyk, noting that Barrett’s injury is not serious and that he would be back before conference play starts on Nov. 5. Rawlyk also added that with his two stars sitting out, the tournament allowed him to give younger players significant playing time and to see who might step up as his top players this season. “It’s a great opportunity for us to measure ourselves not only as a team but for every be able to see Sheaf Ad4 player Self to Help 2011:The what they need to do and the level
they need to play at,” said Rawlyk. With the departure of shooting guard Rejean Chabot, who finished his five years of eligibility last season, fifth-years Peter Lomuro and Duncan Jones have emerged as the top contenders for the second guard position. Lomuro, a recruit from the University of Winnipeg Wesmen, put up 49 points and 4 steals on the weekend and was named the tournament’s most valuable player. Jones, who has been with the Huskies since 2008, was expected to start last season but was forced to split playing time after Chabot decided to return. His 61 points in the tournament earned him an all-star mention. Rawlyk pointed out that although both players are listed as guards on the roster, Lomuro’s versatility from the guard to forward position will allow Jones and Lomuro to be on the court at the same time. “They’ve been sharing a lot of time and are compatible players,” said Rawlyk. With Barrett, Jones and Lomuro on at the same time, “It’s like a three-guard system.” “We have a lot of good players from guards to forwards and we have 12 guys who can come in and out of the game,” added Huskies forward Nolan Brudehl. Brudehl, a fourth-year player who started for the Dogs last season, is expected to make an even bigger impact this year. “Nolan’s emerged into a leader for our team,” said Rawlyk. “He started for us last year but he’s obviously playing a more prominent role all the time.” Brudehl, who was also named a tournament all-star, put up 37 points and had 32 rebounds in the three games. “I’m trying to be a leader out there,” he said. “I’ve been through three of these tournaments already, so I’m just showing some of the younger guys how it’s done and how to play out there.” 1:43 PM Page 1 Duncan Jones of the Huskies fights for the lay-in against Alberta. Sheaf 8/30/11
Raisa Pezderic/Photo Editor
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thesheaf.com/sports • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Post-season a possibility for Huskies soccer Huskies women’s soccer close to first-ever spot in playoffs; men eliminated from contention KEVIN MENZ Sports Editor There is only one weekend of regular season Canada West soccer left and it looks like it will be up to Lady Luck to keep the Huskies’ playoff hopes alive. While the men’s team was officially eliminated from playoff contention after a 4-2 loss to the Trinity Western Spartans and a 5-2 defeat at the hands of the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds this past weekend, the women’s team still has a chance to qualify for one of the four conference playoff spots. However, after also losing on the road to both the Spartans and the Thunderbirds on Oct. 22 and 23, respectively, their playoff hopes rely predominantly on the Calgary Dinos’ and the Victoria Vikes’ failures. The Huskies lost 2-0 against Trinity Western and 6-0 against UBC this past weekend, being outshot 49-7 total. Keeper Marissa Wilford was perhaps the only shining light after making 23 saves in the games. The losses moved the Huskies to sixth in the Canada West, four points behind both Calgary and Victoria for the final playoff spot. While a playoff birth might seem unlikely, if luck works out for the Huskies, they can still pass both the Dinos and the Vikes to qualify for playoffs. Both the Huskies and Calgary have two games left this season, while Victoria only has one remaining. The Dogs face the Regina Cougars and
the Manitoba Bisons at home Oct. 29 and 30 for their final games of the season. Both Regina and Manitoba sit near the bottom of the standings and it is very possible for the Huskies to come away with two wins and six points from those games. If they do this and both Calgary and Victoria do not earn more than one point in their remaining games, the Huskies will qualify for playoffs. Calgary’s two games are against the league’s top two teams — Trinity Western and UBC — and it will be a difficult task for the Dinos to improve upon their points standing. Victoria only has one game remaining, meaning they have a smaller chance to increase their point totals. However, this game is against the University of Fraser Valley Cascades — a team that sits seventh in the league and who the Vikes beat 2-1 earlier this year. If the Huskies finish the season tied with Calgary in the standings, they will still not qualify for playoffs as the Dinos defeated the Huskies earlier this year. If they are tied with Victoria, however, they will qualify for playoffs because the Dogs were victorious over the Vikes in their only match this season. The Huskies women’s soccer team has never qualified for a Canada West playoff spot.
The Huskies Kelly Cerkowniak fends off a UBC player.
file photo Raisa Pezderic/Photo Editor
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/sports
Making headway on headshots
Canada West Standings FOOTBALL
Experts debate how to properly decrease number of concussions in youth hockey
Standings 1. Calgary x 2. UBC x 3. Saskatchewan 4. Manitoba 5. Regina 6. Alberta
7-0 5-2 4-3 3-4 2-5 0-7
x - clinched playoff spot
League Leaders Rushing 1. Adrian Charles - REG 2. Steven Lumbala - CGY 3. A. Coombs - MAN
GP 7 7 6
Att. 147 105 69
Passing 1. Billy Greene - UBC 2. K. Williams - MAN 3. Eric Dzwilewski - CGY
GP 7 7 7
Com-Att-Int 148-244-4 120-206-6 109-182-3
Receiving 1. Jordan Grieve - UBC 2. Chris Dobko - CGY 3. Jared Janotta - REG
GP 7 7 7
Rec. 34 44 33
Yards 818 817 553
Long 33 45 69
TD 3 7 7
Yards 2137 1710 1507
Long 72 90 61
Yards 672 534 453
Long 72 40 69
TD 4 7 3
TD 16 8 12
Scoring (TDs) 1. A. Coombs - MAN 2. Steven Lumbala - CGY Chris Dobko - CGY
GP 6 7 7
TD 8 7 7
Rush 7 7 0
Pass 1 0 7
Tackles 1. J. Hetherington - AB 2. T. Michalchuk - SASK 3. Sam Hurl - CGY
GP 7 7 7
Solo 46 34 31
Ast. 18 25 25
Total 55.0 46.5 43.5
Sacks 1. Connor Flynn - UBC 2. Serge Kaminsky - UBC Logan Brooks - REG
GP 7 7 7
Solo 6 5 5
Ast. 0 0 0
Total 6.0 5.0 5.0
Interceptions 1. Mitch Friesen - SASK 2. Levar Hayden - UBC Michael Lau - CGY
GP 6 7 7
No. 3 3 3
Yards 38 94 39
Long 38 63 33
MEN’S HOCKEY Standings 1. Manitoba 2. Saskatchewan* 3. Alberta 4. Calgary 5. UBC 6. Lethbridge* 7. Regina
*The Saskatchewan at Lethbridge game on Oct. 1 — each team’s second of the season — was stopped after the second period due to ice resurfacing problems. It will be rescheduled at a later date.
4-1-1 4-1-0 3-2-1 3-3-0 2-0-2 2-2-1 1-5-0
Alex Semin of the Washington Capitals after taking a hit to the head in NHL preseason.
DAVID KRAUSE The Manitoban (University of Manitoba) WINNIPEG (CUP) — In January of last year, Sidney Crosby — the undeniable face of the NHL — was concussed during a hockey game, calling athlete safety in hockey into question. Rising concerns about concussions among children playing in youth hockey leagues have led to some ideas for reform — chiefly, raising the checking age. Dr. Martin Bunge, a paediatric radiologist at the Children’s Hospital in Winnipeg and Brian Foreman, a minor hockey coach for Manitoba’s Fort Garry Flyers, shared their expert opinions on the controversy. Both Foreman and Bunge agree that concussions seem to be rare in junior and minor hockey leagues. “We don’t see many children with concussions, but that does not say that concussions don’t occur,” said Bunge. “The [minor] hockey league mandates that children wear helmets during hockey to protect their heads. Having said that, small concussions can occur.” Foreman argues that hitting will always take place in hockey — it’s the nature of the sport — so responsible player contact must be taught to minimize the potential for injury. “You also have to teach them, number one, how to hit responsibly and how to take a hit,” Foreman emphasized. “I think it’s the responsibility of coaches to teach [players] at a younger age responsible ways to hit and more importantly how to take a hit and
how not to put yourself in dangerous situations when you are in the game.” Foreman believes that the quality of modern hockey equipment doesn’t allow players to feel the hits and to respond correctly. Modern equipment — as opposed to old equipment, which tended to be relatively soft — is made of hard plastic and encourages more reckless behavior from players. “You see sticks up, you see elbows up and, again, our job as [coaches] is to teach [hitting] properly and the techniques properly,” said Foreman. “And at the grassroots level, that will eventually carry up to when these kids are in junior and beyond. They will have respect for players and the game, and also they know that the hits are coming and how to respond.” Bunge said a concussion is “a clinical diagnosis that is dependent on whether the child has loss of consciousness at the time and however long loss of consciousness occurs. “The concussions are sometimes picked up radiographically on an MRI session,” Bunge said. “What we are looking for are tiny bleeds in the brain at the junction of the grey and white matter. They occur in very specific portions of the brain, in the frontal and temporal lobes, and these are the areas of the brain which determine personality and cognitive functions.” Concussions can have long effects on the child’s health, he added. “The problems that occur may not manifest themselves immediately other than postconcussion syndrome, which
presents the children with headaches and generally not feeling up to things,” said Bunge. “Later on in life, however, children with postconcussion syndromes are more prone to degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.” Bunge states that there should be no checking or hitting in minor hockey as it is dangerous to the child and any risk should be avoided. He also commented that the age in which checking is introduced should be raised. “I would recommend that they raise body checking to 15, 16 — if not older. I don’t think it has any place in sport,” he said. Foreman disagreed with Bunge’s stance on raising the age at which checking is permissible, stating that it can be done safely at any age, as long as it is properly taught. But that doesn’t mean he is opposed to any changes. “I really applaud the stance the NHL is taking on headshots, and hopefully that will filter down through the NHL and through the leagues,” said Foreman. “You need all players to play hockey, and if we keep hitting and hurting each other inappropriately, you will run each other out of the game.” Hockey Canada has recently implemented rules and regulations that should help prevent concussions and properly treat them when they happen. New rules regarding head checking, hitting from behind, equipment fitting and player conduct will be monitored and enforced during the 2011–12 female and minor hockey seasons.
Points 1. Kyle Bortis - SASK 2. Derek Hulak - SASK T3. Taylor Gal - LETH
GP 6 6 6
Goals 4 2 4
Goals 1. Taylor Stefishen - CGY T. DeLaronde - REG Kyle Bortis - SASK
GP 3 4 6
No. 4 4 4
Ast. 7 8 3
Totals 11 10 7
Assists 1. Derek Hulak - SASK 2. Kyle Bortis - SASK Teigan Zahn - CGY
GP 6 6 6
Plus/Minus 1. Derek Hulak - SASK 2. Brett Bartman - CGY Kyle Bortis - SASK
GP 6 6 6
Total +8 +6 +6
Penalty Minutes 1. Chad Erb - MAN 2. T. DeLaronde - REG 3. Ian Barteaux - AB
GP 6 4 6
Total 59 32 32
GP 4 4 2
No. 3 3 2
No. 8 7 7
WOMEN’S HOCKEY Standings 1. Lethbridge 2. Alberta 3. Saskatchewan 4. Calgary 5. Manitoba 6. Regina 7. UBC
3-1-0 2-1-1 2-2-0 2-0-0 1-2-1 1-3-0 1-1-0
Assists 1. Julie Paetsch - SASK
Rianne Wight - REG Kaitlin Imai - UBC
League Leaders Points 1. Danny Stone - SASK 2. Monika Moskalski - AB J. Carswell - MAN
GP 4 4 4
Goals 3 3 2
GP 4 4 2
No. 3 3 2
1. Monika Moskalski - AB
Danny Stone - SASK T3. Laura Jordan - UBC
Ast. 2 1 2
Totals 5 4 4
GP 4 Ashley Beattie - LETH 4 Courtney Minor - LETH 4
1. B. Anderson - MAN
Penalty Minutes 1. H. Wickenheiser - CGY 2. Nicole Pratt - AB T3. Iya Gavrilova - CGY
WOMen’s Soccer Standings
GP 1 4 2
Total +3 +3 +3 Total 22 18 12
Men’s Soccer Standings
1. TWU x 2. UBC x 3. Alberta x 4. Calgary 5. Victoria 6. Saskatchewan 7. UFV 8. Manitoba 9. Regina 10. Lethbridge
10-1-1 9-1-2 8-4 6-3-3 6-4-3 5-5-2 3-7-3 2-7-3 1-9-2 0-9-3
1. Victoria x 2. UBC 3. Alberta 4. TWU 5. Calgary 6. Saskatchewan 7. UFV 8. Lethbridge
x - clinched playoff spot
x - clinched playoff spot
League Leaders Points 1. Janine Frazao - UBC 2. Heather Lund - AB 3. Daniela Gerig - TWU
GP1 Goals 12 12 12 9 12 6
Goals 1. Janine Frazao - UBC 2. Heather Lund - AB T3. E. Hudon - SASK
GP 12 12 12
No. 12 9 6
Avg. 1.00 0.75 0.50
GP 11 Jenna Di Nunzio - TWU 12 3. Kayla Michaels - AB 12
No. 6 6 5
Avg. 0.55 0.50 0.42
Saves 1. M. Wilford - SASK 2. T. Willoughby - LETH 3. Chloe Werle - MAN
No. 84 76 71
Avg. 7.00 6.91 6.45
1. Jaclyn Sawicki - UVIC
GP 12 11 11
Ast. 1 2 4
8-2-2 7-1-4 6-2-4 6-4-2 6-5-1 4-6-2 1-9-2 1-10-1
Total 13 11 10
League Leaders Points 1. J. B-Hamilton - SASK 2. Navid Mashinchi - UBC Sean Haley - UBC
GP 12 11 12
Goals 7 5 6
Ast. 6 5 4
Goals 1. J. B-Hamilton - SASK S. Schmidt - TWU 3. Sean Haley - UBC
GP 12 12 12
No. 7 7 6
Avg. 0.58 0.58 0.50
Assists 1. J. B-Hamilton - SASK 2. Cameron Schmidt - AB Navid Mashinchi - UBC
GP 12 9 11
No. 6 5 5
Avg. 0.50 0.56 0.45
Saves 1. Colin Pattison - LETH 2. Mark Diakiw - SASK 3. Jay Vetsch - AB
GP 12 12 11
No. 82 66 51
Avg. 6.83 5.50 4.64
Looking to hook up in Saskatoon tonight? Going to the bars is such a hassle. Why not write a sports article from the comfort of your couch? It will get you mad laid.* *contact sports editor Kevin Menz email@example.com
Total 13 10 10
Pts. 48 42 42
Yards 43 30 23 TD 0 0 0
thesheaf.com/arts • the sheaf • October 27, 2011
Demons and night-vision: round three Paranormal Activity 3 continues the series’ trend of being scary entertainment AREN BERGSTROM Arts Editor
Third time doesn’t break the charm in this third entry and prequel to the popular horror franchise. It’s unheard of for second films in horror franchises to be good, let alone third entries, and yet the three films in the Paranormal Activity series are consistently good. The first one still takes the cake due to its ingenuity, its authenticity and the fact that it started the whole trend of static camera found-footage horror filmmaking. Paranormal Activity 2 was not quite as effective as its predecessor but it was still nothing to sneeze at, adding some innovate scares while expanding the series’ mythology.
PA3 needs you to surrender to the unknown and allow your imagination to fill in the gaps with the most frightening explanations.
Paranormal Activity 3 is better than PA2, although not as scary. The series’ popular formula is subject to the law of diminishing returns, thus, seeing these types of scares the third time around is not as affecting as it was the first time. Still, there’s no denying that PA3 is scary. It also has some things that the previous two films didn’t have: lots of humour and genuinely good acting. PA3 is set in California in 1988 and follows Katie and Kristi, played by Katie Featherston and Sprague Grayden in the previous films, as little girls when they were first bothered by the malevolent demon that haunts their family. Played by Chloe Csengery and Jessica Tyler Brown, Katie and Kristi are typical girls who have an imaginary friend named Toby (who obviously turns out to be not so imaginary.) As a convenient way to explain the foundfootage conceit, their mother Julie (Lauren
Katie (left) and Kristi experience some strange happenings in their bedroom.
Bittner) is now involved with wedding videographer Dennis (Christopher Nicholas Smith), so when strange happenings start occurring around the girls, Dennis sets up a makeshift surveillance system to find out exactly what’s going on. Just like in PA2, there are some innovations regarding the nighttime scenes in PA3. Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, the pair behind last year’s pseudo-documentary Catfish, directed the film and here they demonstrate a special gift for timing. They pare down the nighttime cameras to just three, one set up in both bedrooms and one on the main floor recording the kitchen and living room. The decision to limit the number of cameras is wise since the large number of cameras in PA2 took away from the authenticity and largely made editing do the job of scaring people. Joost and Schulman also come up with a brilliant idea for the third camera recording the kitchen and living room. They hook it up to a fan so that the camera pans back and forth between kitchen and living room at reliable intervals. This steady timing allows for some frightening scenes on the main floor, one involving a babysitter and the campy notion of a
white-sheet ghost, the other involving Julie and some misplaced kitchen appliances. Perhaps learning from the horror films of Sam Raimi (Evil Dead), Joost and Schulman know how to disarm the viewer with wellplaced humour, making the viewer unprepared for when the actual scare comes. The scene in which Katie and Dennis’s friend Randy (Dustin Ingram) play a game of Bloody Mary uses this kind of humour particularly well to draw out an unbearably tense scene. The acting here is also quite impressive. Christopher Nicholas Smith is the most likable and fully-formed of the father figures in the series, giving a genuinely good performance as Dennis that still seems sufficiently naturalistic. The child actors Chloe Csengary and Jessica Tyler Brown are especially impressive as young Katie and Kristi. Joost and Schulman coax great, chilling performances out of them that never seem inauthentic — a rarity for child actors, especially in horror films. The big caveat with PA3 is that just like with the previous films the viewer has to be complicit with the scares or they won’t work. Like with comedy, you can resist being affected by horror. Its scares work in a similar manner to
when you are lying awake in the pitch black of your bedroom, allowing your mind to wander and create frightening theories for all the creaks and cracks that echo throughout the house. PA3 needs you to surrender to the unknown and allow your imagination to fill in the gaps with the most frightening explanations. Perhaps the reason the Paranormal Activity films are so successful is because they still feel fresh when compared to all the schlock that passes for horror in Hollywood. They play off things that actually scare us and tap into our greatest collective paranormal fascination: fear of ghosts. If you didn’t like the previous films, Paranormal Activity 3 won’t work its magic on you. But for those viewers who appreciate this new formula for horror, you’ll be pleasantly impressed.
Paranormal Activity 3 is currently playing at Galaxy Cinemas.
Editor’s Pick of the Week The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad This 1949 Disney classic is the perfect way to get in the mood for Halloween. Ignore the one half of the double feature adapted from The Wind in the Willows dealing with the hilarious Mr. Toad (although it is pretty fabulous) and skip straight to “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” as told by Bing Crosby. It’s full of stylized animation, musical sequences sung by Crosby and the most hilariously awkward version of
Ichabod Crane ever put on film. As well, the sequence with the infamous Headless Horseman is one of the most chilling scenes in all of Disney. While a musical narrative may not be the most obvious way to tell the story of Sleepy Hollow, this Disney version is loads better than Tim Burton’s 1999 film. So go dig out that old VHS tape or illegally download it, and enjoy the classic Disney version of one of the most popular Halloween tales ever told.
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/arts
and Japanese rip-offs, there may yet be hope for the horror genre. Our generation has seen the emergence of a new horror sub-genre: found footage. Movies like The Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield and Paranormal Activity have capitalized on the techno-age, making frightening flicks on low budgets. Advances in science and technology appear to be the inspiration for the small number of unique horror movies in Hollywood. That and gross-out fests like The Human Centipede. Whether you are a fan of the classic or the cheesy (or both: Trolls 2, anyone?), do yourself a favour and watch a horror leading up to Halloween. And even if you are not a fan of horror movies, it’s at least a good excuse to cuddle up with someone under a pile of blankets.
After the reign of classic Universal horror films like Dracula and The Mummy, supernatural stories that could be dismissed as impossible when it came time to tuck yourself into bed, audiences were ready for something more unsettling. Thus, the psychological thriller was born. Directors Stanley Kubrick and Alfred Hitchcock dominated the industry. Their classic tales of murder, violence and insanity are just as disturbing today as they were when originally released. Hitchcock’s Psycho from 1960 is widely credited for inspiring the slasher-movie onslaught of the ’70s and ’80s. Fortunately for all of us corn syrup fans, this gore storm from 30 years ago produced many iconic horror series that are still cranking out sequels. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984-2010) is probably older than most university students, and has enjoyed incredible success. Nine full-length feature
Max Schreck’s Count Orlok, the grand-daddy of all movie vampires.
films, a television show, novels, video games and comic books have all helped to make Freddy Krueger the star of the second-highest-grossing horror franchise,
beaten only by the hockey-mask madness of Friday the 13th (1980-2009). While present-day horror mainly consists of disappointing remakes, mediocre sequels
AMC will be playing horror movies until the end of October during their yearly horror marathon Fear Fest, hosted by Dawn of the Dead director George A. Romero.
Winston’s Haunted Hotel Frightfest! The prequels are better than the original trilogy of Star Wars! Val Kilmer was the best Batman!
Driving Miss Daisy deserved the Best Picture Oscar! Disagree? Then write for the Arts Section! Send your articles to Aren Bergstrom. firstname.lastname@example.org
Presentation SWAP Working Holidays
Tuesday, November 1, 7:30 PM
Presentation "How We Garden" A free public presentation based on The Armchair Book of Gardens Wednesday, November 2, 7:30 PM
run October 27, 11.indd 1
10/17/11 3:14:05 PM
Join us until Tuesday, November 1st, for an All Hallow’s Weekend for Winston’s Frightfest!
thesheaf.com/arts• the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Footloose hits the right steps Sexy remake definitely kicks off the Sunday shoes BLAIR WOYNARSKI
There is a tendency to act hostile toward a remake for no reason other than the fact that it is a remake. I do my best to avoid this. When I went to see the new Footloose in theatres, I kept my mind open, although I had the lingering knowledge that there were a million different ways they could screw it up. What I found, however, was a remake that did almost everything right. We all know the story. Big city teenager Ren MacCormack is forced to relocate to the podunk town of Bomont. It is a very straight-laced religious community where everyone’s morality is the sole responsibility of Reverend Shaw Moore, whose explosive sermons preach against the sin of the modern age. Ren tries to fit in, making friends with the awkward, amiable, cowboy-hat wearing Willard and falling into close contact with the wild-child preacher’s daughter Ariel. Of course, in the process, he ends up running afoul of the law, Reverend Moore and Ariel’s dirt-track-racing boyfriend Chuck. But most importantly, he must face off against the town in his mission to break the ban on dancing that was enacted three years prior. The film begins with an homage to the iconic prologue of the original, with the montage of dancing feet, but rather than an innocent and sterile environment, this one sets it against the backdrop of a raging kegger, with garbage and spilled beer littering the dance floor. It starts off on a much darker note than the original by actually dramatizing the car crash which resulted in the original dance-ban. The other notable difference is that Ren arrives at his aunt and uncle’s house alone after losing his mother to Leukemia. One should not go into this film expecting anything other than Footloose. The high points from the original are all there, although a few scenes are shifted around or conflated together. Mostly, the change is tonal.
Try to figure out what’s awkward about this photo.
This version is edgier and the teenagers at large are more adventurous with the way they flout the law. Much of the dancing has been updated and given a hip-hop flavour (it being sort of the rock ’n’ roll of today, as far as detractors go). We end up with what anyone could expect: Footloose, only darker, dirtier and sexier. This isn’t a criticism, however. It makes perfect sense; 1980s glam rock and high-waisted jeans don’t really cut it this decade, so the culture of rebellion split off in a new direction, while the core of the conflict remains the same. Much of the original soundtrack has been preserved, with some twists and variations (like a slow country ballad version of “I Need a Hero”). Mixed in is a modern country and hip-hop amalgam, that succeeds in some points and not in others. Kenny Wormald performs well as Ren. It would hardly be fair to compare him to Kevin Bacon. He is a dancer by trade and this is his first major acting job. He has the charisma to pull off the character and he plays the emotions well enough. The main problem is
that he doesn’t internalize very well; he is fine when he needs to have a big reaction, but when he needs to keep the conflict inside, it runs a little flat. The worst moment is the infamous dance-rampage in the abandoned warehouse (which was a hard sell even with Kevin Bacon), which starts off with a weird angry pseudo-rap about how much the town pisses him off. Julianne Hough is believable as Reverend Moore’s rebel daughter Ariel. She confidently pulls of the hypersexuality, but also the psychological conflict of revelling in acting like a slut but shuddering at the thought of actually being one. She has a wild streak that leads her to put her life on the line for no reason other than to be noticed. But she also handles the softer scenes with her father. Miles Teller is lovable as Willard and Patrick John Flueger delivers as Chuck, who is a pretty shallow villain but gets the job done setting up a rivalry with Ren. Meanwhile the adult characters casually support the classic “old black dudes are cool, old white dudes are strict” motif.
The biggest acting problem is Dennis Quaid as Reverend Moore. The general outlandishness of the original was sold by the subtlety of its leads. But Quaid has no subtlety and he does not carry the weight of someone who feels responsible for leading the townspeople but really feels just as lost as his daughter. He spends most of the movie wearing a “stern parent” hat, with occasional flare-ups into anger. The problem does not rest entirely with the acting, however, since several important character scenes were removed from the remake. There are script problems. Some characters spout lines that only seem to be there because they were in the original. Then some of the new lines are simply cringe-worthy. (“I was hoping you’d teach me the three Rs: reading, writing and redneckery.”) And the decision to remove Ren’s mother is ostensibly supposed to heighten his isolation, but it doesn’t. His uncle ends up taking on the parent role (whereas he was a constant source of antagonism in the original). The sense of oppression coming from the town simply isn’t there and Ren is generally well-received, with the hostility coming from specific characters, and it undercuts a bit of the conflict. However, despite its few failings, for the most part Footloose succeeds as a movie and a remake. It is every bit as fun and optimistic as the original, but shifts the focus to sentiments more relevant to the modern day. Many people will criticise the “hipper, edgier” remake, but Footloose is all about people trying to be hip and edgy in the face of an older generation, so a modern revamp suits it perfectly. Fans and newcomers alike will find a lot to love about the movie.
Footloose is currently playing at Galaxy Cinemas.
Gothic horror invades your television American Horror Story is a unique but unfulfilled series MATT CHEETHAM
I always get excited for the new fall season of television on cable networks like HBO, Showtime, FX and AMC. This fall there are new arrivals like Showtime’s Homeland, Starz’s Boss and AMC’s forthcoming Hell on Wheels as well as subsequent seasons of quality television programs like Boardwalk Empire, Dexter and The Walking Dead. However, the one show that got me really excited was FX’s American Horror Story. I’m an unabashed junkie for both the horror genre and ghost stories so naturally FX doing a haunted house story caught my eye. However, I had a few concerns. The show is created and run by Ryan Murphy who, while creating the brilliant Nip/Tuck, also created Glee. When you think of ghosts and demons you don’t usually say, “Oh, get that guy who thrust show tunes, high school drama and a 3D concert movie in our face. He’ll know what do!” Since it was on FX, I decided to give it a chance. American Horror Story stars Dylan McDermott (The Practice), Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights), Jessica Lange (Tootsie), Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under) and Denis O’Hare (True Blood). The story centres around the Harmon family, which
moves to L.A. from Boston to start anew after the husband has an affair and slowly try to rebuild their family and escape their demons. Of course, the family happens to relocate to an old Victorian mansion that happens to be haunted and the scene of several grisly deaths. Dylan McDermott plays the husband and psychologist Ben, whose patients may in fact be former victims of the house. Ben for the most part is skeptical of any supernatural activity and seems to be more annoyed that a neighbour and former resident who is now a burn victim keeps bothering him. Ben also has to ward off advances of the maid who seems to be tormenting him about his past in Boston. Jessica Lange plays the nosy neighbour Constance who is always in the house for one reason or another. Lange is tremendous in this role and steals every scene she is in as the aging southern belle. Special mention to Frances Conroy and Denis O’Hare, who play the maid and burn victim Larry. Finally, Connie Britton plays Ben’s wife, Vivian, who may or may not have a demonic baby growing inside her. Let’s make one thing clear: this show is weird, which is pretty awesome. Right from the beginning the family sees a demon baby, a man in a rubber S&M suit, a maid who alternates between old and young appearances and numerous ghosts. The show
is very ambiguous about whether the people interacting with the family are in fact ghosts or just weird people connected to the house. There have been three episodes so far and each one has revealed another layer of weirdness that is transfixing. The show is very reminiscent of Lost or Twin Peaks. It’s exciting to have a show that is bat-shit crazy at times and throws everything but the kitchen sink at its audience. Now for a few complaints. While the weirdness is fun and exciting, sometimes it feels like too much and you realize there has been little character and plot development. For a show hyped as scary, it is very minimally so. There are a few jumps and thrilling moments but mainly it is just strange. That is very intriguing and even engaging, but not terrifying. I hope the show has a plan and knows where is going rather than just being so strange that it creates a hype factor a la Lost, because the potential for a haunted house series is very promising. So, give American Horror Story a watch. It’s actually the perfect show for a marathon around Halloween.
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/arts
An exercise in torture Enduring all seven Saw movies in anticipation of Halloween NICHOLAS KINDRACHUK I love horror movies of all kinds. The feeling I get from being scared, that adrenaline rush — I live for it. However, the Saw horror movies don’t come off as particularly scary. I had only seen the first two movies and I always enjoyed the premise behind Saw, so I felt it was time to finish the journey. In honour of Halloween, the following are my immediate reactions to all seven Saw movies, written to the movies themselves:
I just finished my night class and am going to sit back, relax and take in some horror. It has been a while since I watched you so I look forward to seeing you again. After about four minutes in, the acting and dialogue are numbing my brain a bit. Especially the doctor who is pretty much the main character. I can tell he’s trying so damn hard. I never really noticed how fast everyone makes connections and discover clues — it feels like I’m watching CSI. All is redeemed by the presence of Danny Glover who pretty much plays Murtaugh from Lethal Weapon again, but not only is he getting too old for this shit, he is also a huge downer. Still, I am enjoying watching you quite a bit despite the killing of Glover, which should be forbidden, along with the way you just completely hit the audience over the head with the twist. Give the audience some credit! They can figure it out! You don’t have to flashback to the entire movie! Sincerely,
Dear Saw II,
Is Saw really a series that should be associated with Roman numerals? I always associate the use of them with something classy. You are anything but classy. Oh hey, Donnie Wahlberg: the poor man’s Wahlberg! He’s essentially a very drunk-looking Mark Wahlberg. However, he replaced the doctor from the first movie, so that’s fantastic. I have never been so annoyed by an actor in my life. I have seen worse acting, sure. I just hate him without knowing him. It’s completely unfair, but it’s the truth. He just has one of those faces you could punch. Everything people need to know about you is that you are the movie where Donnie beats the crap out of Jigsaw and then there is a twist that is actually not bad until you ruin it with 10 minutes of flashbacks. Sincerely,
Dear Saw III,
Okay, I haven’t seen you and the rest of the films yet. This guy just woke up in a trap and my immediate thought was, “That would be silly.” I might be more than just a little desensitized to all this by now. I have watched three of you already and I’m growing exhausted. You feel more like a soap opera than a horror movie. I mean you totally have love-triangle vibes going on right now. Jigsaw’s apprentice Amanda, I don’t know what it is, but I’m really into her. That probably speaks to my character, once again. Wait. What? Jigsaw and his apprentice both die? How the hell are there four more movies? Sincerely,
Dear Saw IV,
You know you’re going crazy when you close your eyes and envision elaborate death traps for no particular reason. You start with the autopsy of Jigsaw, which would be great if it was all you consisted of. Damn, it’s not. You really stepped up your game with the
Don’t value your life? If not, you may wake up one day to find yourself in a similar situation.
brutality of the traps in this one. I would say that’s probably a good thing for this franchise. The mission you give the hero is to save Donnie Wahlberg, because we obviously cannot lose a true hero like Donnie. He didn’t save Donnie and I have never cried like that before. I completely lost it. I literally wept at his death. But when you’re not setting traps and you follow the police around, it’s like a really bad episode of Criminal Minds. I wonder who the new Jigsaw is. My twist would be that it’s actually Mark Wahlberg. Call me crazy but besides the awful police parts, I was totally entertained and am feeling rejuvenated by you, Saw IV. Sincerely,
than the last three: a 3D slasher film. The only reason to watch you is because you feature the lead singer of Linkin Park getting killed, which is beautiful. With every additional one of you guys, the parts that made the original Saw great become
Dear Saw V,
I wish you guys would have just stopped at three (even though four was pretty all right). You are all basically the same movie with ridiculous twist endings. Half of you are now just flashbacks to the first three. My brain hurts. Oh sweet, it’s a flashback to Amanda. You know, that’s the kind of girl a guy could just fall in love with, settle down, start a family and set up diabolical traps for people who don’t value life. A man can only dream. Sincerely,
Dear Saw: The Final Chapter,
You are The Final Chapter and I thought you would try to finish it with a bang. Then I saw that you brought the doctor back. Why? You are absolute trash and I’m only comparing you to your other Saw siblings. You have just become something even more stupid
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Dear Saw VI,
distant memories. And after seven tiresome versions of you, my brain is shot. I’m fighting off urges to kill and I certainly do not want to play any more games. Sincerely,
Chiropractic Care Massage Therapy and Physical Therapy
I am longer feeling rejuvenated. You are practically a movie consisting only of Saw flashbacks. I could be sleeping right now instead of watching you. I could be sleeping away, dreaming nice dreams of hanging out with Danny Glover. Your lighting is really awful too. Yup, I just critiqued your lighting. Suck it! I haven’t actually felt tense or scared since the first movie and right now your entertainment value is equivalent to eye gouging. Sincerely,
R.M.T., Massage Therapist
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thesheaf.com/arts• the Sheaf • October 27, 2011
Arkham City delivers the full Batman experience A review for those who would rather be delivering swift justice right now BLAIR WOYNARSKI
Batman: Arkham City is one of the year’s most hotly anticipated titles and a follow-up to 2009’s smash-hit Batman: Arkham Asylum. For months, developer Rocksteady has been dropping hints about how much bigger and better the gaming experience will be in this installment. Now that it is here, it is difficult to talk about the game in terms of bigger and better. Mostly, it is different. The premise is simple: you play as Batman (obviously). Arkham Asylum has been shut down and the inmates from there and Blackgate prison have been transported to a closed-off section of Gotham City, where they are left to fend for themselves. Various supervillains have staked out territory in this urban prison and inmates have split up into three factions following Joker, Penguin and Two-Face. Joker is a bit the worse for wear following the events in Arkham Asylum, but he has a big plan in the works, while the other villains pursue their own agendas. Batman is caught in the middle of this when he is captured and dropped into Arkham City by the chief psychiatrist/warden, Hugo Strange. The game maintains the sense of isolation that the first one had but it also creates a more vibrant environment to explore. Batman is not caught in the middle of a prison break, but rather he gets dropped into a living community that happens to be populated entirely by dangerous criminals. It is hard to tell the size of Arkham City as you’re playing through
Batman prowls over the city prison of Arkham City, ready to hand out justice with his fists.
it because it is a dense urban environment, unlike the spread-out handful of buildings on Arkham Island, but Batman’s unique assortment of gadgetry allows you to make very good time grappling and gliding across the rooftops. Arkham City is not simply an expansion of everything in Arkham Asylum, but it displays a marked shift in intention and execution. Whereas the first had an open environment but forced the story progression into a very linear
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avenue, this game fully embraces the open world aspect. With all the crime and villainy in Gotham City condensed into this one place, it makes sense there is no shortage of things for Batman to do. So in tandem with the main story, there are about a dozen different side-plots to follow — related to various villains from Batman’s extensive rogue’s gallery – which test your combat, speed and detective skills. The game trades a lot in artificial urgency so common to video games, where each sidequest you stumble upon ostensibly demands your immediate attention, although nothing in the game is actually forcing you to do anything particular at any particular time. It results in an atmosphere of immense pressure hovering over you, which heightens the sense of being Batman, constantly leaping from one crisis to another. The story takes a wider and more scattered approach. Arkham Asylum had the Joker running the show and made temporary digressions into side-villains, but Arkham City has Batman turning from villain to villain, never quite sure who is the biggest threat. The hours of gameplay work like a television series, moving between episodes, each one selfcontained but revolving around a central problem, which is why it seems that people who rush through the story find it more convoluted than those who take their time. However, the game gets busy with its copious villains, and many of them do not get adequate time to shine. Gameplay has seen a definite improvement. The free-flow brawler style combat is back. Combat focuses mainly on rhythm, timing your attacks and counterattacks precisely to string together combos that allow you to beat down hordes of bad guys without taking a hit. It is easy enough to
brawl your way through the game, but it takes practice to start making art with your hit combinations. This time around Batman has a few new moves, which include being able to use his array of gadgets against enemies in the middle of combat (use explosive gel to blast them to the ground, an electric charger to stun them or the bat-claw to disarm them, all with quick button combinations). The stealth portions, wherein you have to take down patrolling groups of heavily armed thugs one at a time without being caught, have improved. There is a greater variety of terrain to work around and enemies have new gadgets at their disposal that add to the challenge. One of the most talked-about additions is the Catwoman campaign, which was advertised heavily, then snatched out at the last minute and converted to downloadable content (to the disdain of many gamers, myself included). But it comes free with a new copy, so it isn’t hard to get set up. At certain points in the story, you can take a break from Batman and join up with Catwoman on her catburgling missions. Her nimble agility is a refreshing contrast from the bulkiness of Batman. She can cling to ceilings, scale walls and use her whip to secure onto objects. Her combat system is fluid and — dare I say? — catlike. Moreover, she allows the aforementioned atmosphere of pressure to be lifted, so you can just have some fun. To cap off the gameplay is the ever-lovable Riddler quest. The number of trophies has been increased to 440, which is enough to keep anyone busy. They can be gained by finding a trophy in an obscure area, solving a simple puzzle, using your detective skills to answer a riddle or completing combat tricks. The game has brought enough variety to the
challenge that it does not devolve into a tedious fetch-quest (or at least not for a long time). The animation is beautiful, save for a few popping textures. Some gamers may miss the Gothic architecture of Arkham Asylum, but the grit and grime of the urban landscape should make up for it. Characters follow a stylized format similar to comics and the animated series (Batman is implausibly buff and Catwoman is possessed of rather shapely assets), but the design is top-notch. And it sounds as good as it looks. Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill bring back their impeccable voice talents as Batman and Joker. Meanwhile Grey DeLisle is devilish as Catwoman and Nolan North hits it out of the park with a very cockney Penguin. It is definitely a good sequel, although perhaps not the one some people were expecting. It got bigger and crazier and perhaps the plot got away from itself a couple times, but above all it is a true Batman game. You can glide seamlessly above the city streets, grapple up the tallest buildings, lurk in the shadows, drop down among unsuspecting thugs and deliver your own street justice. Plus, it is much more satisfying racing across rooftops than trekking across the open grass on Arkham Island. The first game had Batman in a compromising position, but here he is fully in his element, in the midst of a city exploding into chaos. Despite its few problems, Arkham City delivers the total Batman experience and that is a truly impressive achievement.
October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com/arts
The five costumes you will see this Halloween
And three costumes you should consider for yourself
This is one of the grossest families you will ever lay eyes on, their zombie make-up not withstanding.
COLIN GIBBINGS Every year people of all ages put their creativity to the test around Halloween. Children revel in the opportunity to dress up and adults find themselves coming up with awesome partner costumes to rope their unwilling significant others into. Sadly, Halloween also reveals the darker sides of our creativity. This could come in the form of finding yourself at the bar trying to order a drink while two guys dressed as The Dark Knight’s Joker try to outdo each other’s imitation or just finding that you can’t avoid that guy dressed as Tarzan on the dance floor. (Wait, wasn’t he here last year? In the same costume?) Well in case you are short on ideas for what to wear, try to avoid these as last-minute solutions. Because odds are you will see about 10 versions of them at every bar you go to on Halloween. Charlie Sheen This costume seems a bit like yesterday’s news but that never seems to stop people. Expect a lot of bad Charlie Sheen imitations. Even worse, expect to see a dude with a Hawaiian shirt and sunglasses figuring he’s got the complete image down.
hree costume ideas you should totally consider
Sometimes you have Halloween costume block, leaving you unable to think of anything substantially inventive. I get it every year, which is why I start thinking about my costume around August. I usually get some pretty neat ideas but they get dropped because I don’t have the time or patience to create them. Perhaps you do! Also, some people are terrified by the notion of people not knowing what your costume is (See: my girlfriend). Perhaps you don’t mind! If either of those is the case, try these.
And don’t say you weren’t warned when he comes up to you and starts spouting random facts about the “tiger blood I totally have, or tiger spleen or whatever the hell it was Charlie said — will you dance with me?” As far as being a warlock for Halloween goes, you’re better off staying home playing Dungeons and Dragons. Bella and Edward Expect Bella and Edward to appear more than usual since the fourth Twilight movie is coming out and it looks to be the biggest one yet. Remember what I said about people forcing their significant others into partner costumes? This one is the Count Dracula of those. Bad vampire jokes aside, it’s going to suck just how much this bloody costume idea will sink its teeth into our Halloween and be a poor reflection of our society’s concept of originality. It’s also terrible just how painfully easy this costume is to do! Just wear pale makeup and sulk — brilliant! And this would be the most common partner costume idea if it weren’t for the next one. Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort This one is going to see a huge surge this year since the final movie The Pac Man ghosts – without Pac Man Sure, dressing up as Pac Man and the ghosts is pretty ho hum by now — just check YouTube — but what about just being the ghosts, on their down time? Think about it. If people ask where Pac Man is, you can just say, “What? We’re just hanging out. Why do we need to be with Pac Man? We don’t even like that guy.” The Supporting Cast of Star Wars Forget Luke, Han and Chewie! This year, go with some friends as the characters who left their mark on the franchise in only two or three scenes. Instead of dressing as Darth
in the series just came out. Usually you see about 40 Harry Potters on Halloween but, this year, expect to see him paired with his archnemesis Lord Voldemort. It’s a cute idea but it’s going to be so overdone you might as well just stay home and watch all the movies. Steve Jobs Straight to the point, Steve Jobs is dead. Pretty tasteless, no? Just wait! It’s also pretty friggin’ lame, too. What will happen is that you will walk into a bar and about three or four people will be wearing Jobs’ trademark black sweater and jeans with a halo and something in his hand saying — wait for it — iDead! Funny, right? No? Probably not, because you could see it coming about 20 miles away. Personally it had me in stitches — but that’s because I punched that guy so hard my hand required some. Zombie anything Annoyed with the past four costumes? Well get ready to see all four of them in zombie form. Costumes have somehow gotten to the point where people believe the absolute fix for an uncreative costume is just to add zombie before it. So everywhere you go, you will get zombie nurse, zombie athlete, zombie
bride, zombie bartender, zombie zombie hunter, zombie Rob Zombie. It’s as unstoppable as a horde of rampaging zombies! And it happens every year. Sure, zombies are scary and popular but that doesn’t mean they’re creative. In fact, by now
just the thought of being a zombiesomething makes me feel bored. And zombies are pretty dull to begin with, what with the shuffling around and grunting. Before you decide to go as a zombie janitor, think about maybe just being the janitor.
Sell your cool stuff for CASH! We pay cash for gently used, guys and gals trendy and brand name clothes, shoes and accessories
So what’s in your closet?
Vader, go as Admiral Piett. Don’t go out as Boba Fett, be Greedo (but don’t shoot first). Rather than being the plump Jabba, go as the alsoplump Jett Porkins! I guarantee no one else will. Superhero secret identities Maybe this year instead of dressing as Superman or Batman or Spiderman, you can go out as Clark Kent or Bruce Wayne or Peter Parker. Mix it up! Wear their superhero outfit under regular clothes or just be the man behind the mask. It will be original and a guaranteed winner of some “Oh cool idea” comments from people.
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thesheaf.com/graphics • the Sheaf • October 27, 2011 Across
1- Ancient Athens's Temple of _ 5- Rubs out 9- Seine spot 14- Leak slowly 15- _ accompli 16- Uneven 17- River in central Switzerland 18- Salver 19- Angered 20- Beget 22- Caterpillar rival 23- Besides 24- One who osculates 25- Attempts 29- Remove hair 32- Ambush 34- Captivated 39- Came down to earth 40- Diarist Nin 42- One of the Simpsons 43- Medieval musician
45- Passionate 47- Dread 49- Mends a shoe 50- Thin candles 54- "Seinfeld" uncle 56- Mine prop 57- Gramineous 63- " _ by any other name…" 64- Light air 65- On _ with 66- Metal pin 67- Plains native 68- Fast fliers 69- Snow conveyances 70- Clublike weapon 71- Smoke deposit
1- Quickly, quickly 2- Back 3- Architect Saarinen 4- Blueprint detail 5- A lot 6- Capacitance units 7- Decree 8- Eye sore 9- By the day 10- Sign of spring 11- Actor's parts 12- Grenoble's river 13- Passover feast 21- Tabula _ 24- Russian drink 25- Did the butterfly 26- Anklebones 27- 16th letter of the Hebrew alphabet 28- Diner orders 30- Makes well 31- Black bird 33- Tall tales 35- Bread spread 36- 100 dinars 37- Salinger girl
38- 24 hour periods 41- Bit of film, to a photog 44- Goals 46- General _ chicken 48- Aztec god of rain 50- Autocratic Russian rulers 51- Month of showers 52- Establish as the truth 53- Alleviated 55- First name in cosmetics 57- Glimpse 58- Comic Rudner 59- Miss 60- _ facto 61- The Green Hornet's sidekick 62- Formerly, formerly
(CUP) — Puzzles provided by BestCrosswords.com. Used with permission
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October 27, 2011 • the sheaf • thesheaf.com
What’s the worst thing you’ve ever gotten while trick or treating?
“Candy Corn.” CoWan Smith
“A bag of snap peas and carrots.”
In a move only Huey Lewis could have predicted, trendsetters everywhere are deciding it’s hip to be square. “Now that everyone wears thickframed glasses and listens to bands no one’s heard of it, it’s no longer hip. Hipsters needed something fresh, something unexpected,” said Rocco Castoro, the editor at Vice magazine. “Nickelback and mountain bikes from Wal-Mart are very hot right now. Loose-fitting, poorly tailored jeans are also coming back.” Local hipster Sven Michaels admits that one day he simply realized his own limits. “I’m a kid from the suburbs. I take liberal arts classes. Really, I’m no more artistic or visionary than the other million kids in my shoes,” he said.
Li’l Timmy Peterson
Fake News of the Week Un-hip things become very
“Plastic spider rings.”
With previously hip things now going to charity, it’s not uncommon to see homeless people riding fixed-gear bicycles in bright American Apparel pants.
Debate boils over which kid is “really Superman” An altercation broke out at St. Augustine Elementary on Halloween when two students came dressed in identical Superman costumes. Witnesses recall Bobby Hill and Joey Jackson set foot in class, both declaring, “I’m the real Superman!” Soon after, Miss. Wienersmith insisted they could “both be Superman.” At recess, Hill and Jackson climbed to the school roof, deciding “only the real Superman will fly.” Moments later, Jackson and Hill were rushed to emergency in critical condition.
Federal Boob Inspector taken to court
Tennessee man Marvin Jones faces a class-action lawsuit for “the heinous sexual harassment of some 2,000 women.” A string of witnesses has already taken the stand, testifying that Jones has been impersonating a federal agent. “That wouldn’t be so bad,” said Maxine LeBarge, the prosecutor in Jones’ case. “The real problem is that there is no Bureau of Booby-Cruisin’. As citizens of this fine
country, we are endowed with many rights, but one of them is not inventing fictitious agencies.” Jones entered the court room handcuffed, sporting the trademark orange “BBG” shirt that he claims marks him as a Federal Boob Inspector. When the bailiff asked Jones to swear on the Bible he instead placed his hand on her breast and swore, “I do.”
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OCTOBER 31 TO NOVEMBER 4, 2011
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Technology Week is a celebration of cyber culture, a place to showcase innovation and a time to embrace the luxuries of our digital lives. Join us at one of our many informative sessions, keynote addresses or the Retro Movie Night to take part. Everyone is invited, and best of all…everything is
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