ISSUE 65.03 “The press is our chief ideological weapon.”
-Nikita Khrushchev, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
RACHEL RUFRANO Managing Editor
JOE VERSUS CALL OF DUTY WEEKLY A LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
ometimes it doesn’t seem like we get much done in the Union office. We joke around a lot, argue, leave trash everywhere (as of now, Managing/Music Editor Rachel Rufrano is barred from eating in the office until she cleans everything), and play a lot of video games. (Speaking of which, could someone help us figure out how to get on Xbox Live through the school’s servers? Email me. We’ll talk.) Hell, I’m amazed that this paper comes out as intended at all, and not as Call of Duty Weekly. Say now, that ain’t a half-bad idea. But we’ll have to completely restructure the paper editorially. Opinions will become Shit Talk page, and I guess Simone can still be the editor, but she better brush up on her game or else I’m giving the page to someone who knows to not throw
grenades into corners and then run into those corners to cower. Despite Rachel’s messiness, she’s a great editor, so it’s with a heavy heart that I must inform her that there will be no more Music page. No need. We’ll substitute it for Kill page, and I am promoting James Kislingbury to Kill Editor. Rachel, you can still be Managing Editor, I guess. Let no one say that I am an unjust editor. Since James will be off Entertainment and Call of Duty is all about entertainment, we can just completely erase it. Sorry, Katie Wynne (O.G. Entertainment Editor, respect). Same goes for Sports, because video game war is like, the ultimate sport. Literature will stay, but all content must be war-themed. I only want reviews of Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, and W.E.B. Griffin novels. Tim O’Brien if we’re feeling really intellectual that week. This goes for all remaining pages: all Call of Duty, all the time, forever-ever. Before I sacrifice the little integrity
ANDY KNEIS Sports Editor
Who better to get advice from/complain to than some guy you don’t know? Send all emails to: firstname.lastname@example.org
YANKEE DOODLE DRAWINGS WHAT WE DO WHEN WE SHOULD BE TAKING NOTES
Literature Editor & PR
that the Union has in favor of Call of Duty-centric content, I think that we should end our 32 year run with something that’s important: illegal immigration. That’s right, the Union Weekly has finally put an end to the immigration debate in the good ol’ U.S. of A. Not really, but Simone Harrison does illuminate what a small group of dedicated people, known as the Border Angels, can do to help those illegal immigrants that are homeless and trying to find jobs in front of Home Depot (see “Barely Illegal” on pg. 8). There, I’m pretty sure that covers our asses so we can start from the ground up on Call of Duty Weekly! Now I just have to get the staff on redesign overhaul. We’ll have to stop playing so much Call of Duty though, there’s no way we have time for that anymore.
Entertainment Editor & PR
RACHEL RUFRANO Music Editor & PR
Creative Arts Editor
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Comics Editor Culture Editor
SOPHISTICATED BEAR Grunion Editor
CLAY COOPER Art Director
CHELSEA ROSENTHAL Cover Photo
RACHEL RUFRANO Copy-Editor Wrangler
Contributors: MIKE PALLOTTA, MATT DUPREE, SEAN BOULGER, ALAN PASSMAN, MICHAEL MERMELSTEIN, JASON OPPLIGER, ALEXANDRA SCIARRA, JESSE BLAKE, DOMINIC McDONALD, ERIC LOPEZ, ALLAN STEINER, ANDREW LEE, KEN CHO, CHELSEA ROSENTHAL, DAVID FAULK, MAY ZIMMERMAN, JOHN YANG, TRAVIS OTT-CONN, JOE HAMMOND, MONA KOZLOWSKI, NEIL CORBIN, KATRINA GUEVARA, ALLEGRA RINGO, KELVIN HO, BRYAN WALTON, NADIA VANEK, JAMIE KARSON, STEVEN GARCIA, MICHAEL VEREMANS, AMANDA KOH, ISRAEL DELEON, FLASHADE ALFORD, AARON KOSAKA
Disclaimer and Publication Information The Union Weekly is published using ad money and partial funding provided by the Associated Students, Inc. All Editorials are the opinions of the writer, and are not necessarily the opinions of the Union Weekly, ASI, or of CSULB. All students are welcome and encouraged to be a part of the Union Weekly staff.
All letters to the editor will be considered for publication. However, CSULB students will have precedence. All outside submissions are due by Thursday, 5 PM to be considered for publishing the following week and become property of the Union Weekly. Please include name, major, class standing, and phone number for all submissions. They are subject to editing and will not be returned. Letters will be edited for grammar, spelling, punctuation, and length. The Union Weekly will publish anonymous letters, articles, editorials and illustrations, but they must have your name and information attached for our records. Letters to the editor should be no longer than 500 words.
The Union Weekly assumes no responsibility, nor is it liable, for claims of its advertisers. Grievance procedures are available in the Associated Students business office.
JAMES KISLINGBURY UNION WEEKLY
14 SEPTEMBER 2009
Questions? Comments? MAIL : 1212 Bellflower Blvd. Suite 239, Long Beach, CA 90815 PHONE : 562.985.4867 FAX : 562.985.8161 E-MAIL : firstname.lastname@example.org WEB : lbunion.com
NEWS HEALTHCARE DEMONSTRATORS MISS THE POINT ALSO PARTS OF THEIR FINGERS ALEXANDRA SCIARRA
he recent debate on healthcare reform has aroused immense sentiments in both republicans and democrats to say the least. For instance, one man got his finger bitten off by another man when an outdoor healthcare demonstration hosted by the website MoveOn.org in Thousand Oaks erupted in violence. The crowd of almost a hundred demonstrators in favor of healthcare reform attracted a group of counter protesters almost one-fourth their size.
According to Eric Buschow, spokesperson for the Ventura County sheriffs department, the skirmish occurred when the biter who had been standing on the MoveOn.org side crossed the street, over to the counter protest, where victim William Rice had been standing. Rice, 65, who declined to state which side of the debate he fell under, did not get the bitten off part of his left pinky finger reattached. The latter detail, by far, is the greatest unintentional premise in fa-
vor of a complete healthcare overhaul. One would be hardpressed to make something like that up, even if they tried. Mysteriously, the frustrating back and forth brought about by efforts to restructure healthcare within the United States seems to be, in more ways than one, causing seemingly mature adults to act like children. Not only are some having trouble remembering to not sink their teeth into thoes who don’t necessarily agree with them, some have forgotten how to behave in a public and televised setting. During President Obama’s healthcare address to Congress, GOP Representative Joe Wilson of South Carolina shouted out “You lie!” shortly after the President assured the two chambers that the healthcare legislation would not provide coverage to illegal immigrants. Horrified, Speaker Nancy Pelosi turned her head without delay to glare at the agitator, while Vice President Joe Biden hung his head in humiliation. A cut away to the disruptor revealed that he had even been
wearing a bib of a sign that read “What bill?” Wilson shortly issued an apology to a representative of the Obama Administration. Clearly, the struggle to reform healthcare in the United States hits upon an incredibly receptive nerve with many of its citizens. However, it seems as though only a certain demographic are getting increasingly red in the face about this particular issue. Most news coverage of town hall meetings this past summer depicted masses of forty to seventy-year-olds inches away from throwing down with each other. The closest thing to a passionately screaming college kid had been in a sports game on the next channel. It is not reasonable to dismiss the younger demographic as apathetic. The issue simply remains unfamiliar. While many young people do think they are invincible, this should be a time for them to diplomatically rise above the tactics of the older generation as of late and secure a safer future for all Americans.
STATE OF THE BEACH YOUR WEEKLY CAMPUS NEWS IN BRIEF
BEWARE! Do not park on that sweet spot on Atherton, right after the parking lot of Whaley Park Community Center. People have been getting tickets all day, everyday, and the signs are mislabeled. One sign says “no parking begins”, but it really begins sooner than that. Cheeky bastards. You should be able to fight the ticket, but who really wants to go to the Long Beach City Hall if you don’t have to. Nobody. That’s who.
are Monday and Tuesday night, 5pm & 8pm, at the USU Beach Auditorium. Tickets are $2 for students and $5 for your nonCSULB buddies.
Star Trek! Since you didn’t watch this movie three times in IMAX, do yourself a favor and get with the times. Showtimes
Someone recently whined to me about the smokers outside the library. It seems that you have to go through all the smokers to get to
If you had a choice between keeping a pint of your own blood, and a free t-shirt ( probably valued at $5, cheaper if you’re using immigrant labor), you’d choose the t-shirt right? Me too. This Wednesday and Thursday at 10am-5pm in the USU Ballrooms!
the library. Look kids, there are plenty of antismoking laws already in place. Get over it. Now that the whole economy is in the shitter you’d better enjoy this Wednesday’s noon time concert, cause it costs an assload to have them. This week’s band is Doc Whisper and it’s of a hip-hop flavor. Just another friendly reminder that Brian Eno will be having a lecture at the Carpenter Arts Center this Sunday... come on people the man has his own iPhone app. (It’s called Bloom.)
Ever notice the bottom right hand corner of your Beachboard account? It’s ASI’s new way of bugging you about crap. According to this corner, they are looking for leadership and other positions in with ASI. LACMA’s film series was recently destroyed, and resurrected on the third day, and now walks among the living. Be sure to check out some of their great films (while they’re still here). In other art news, the Long Beach Museum of Art is free every Friday thanks to the LA County Arts Commission.
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OPINIONS A sheep in wolf's clothing
A lesson from Pretty in Pink's most self-righteous character, Steff. ALEXANDRA SCIARRA
am a slave to sensibility, and though rational, I have found that my constant bow to consequence has greatly hindered my self-assurance and the amount of fun I’ve been having as of late. Granted, college should be a time for evolving from the juvenile and often petty mannerisms associated with high school. I would like to call a time out, and assure you that while you guys were running around pantsing teachers, I sat back and judged you and your shocking lack of maturity. Needless to say, I am way too nice and it’s getting old. I missed out and in order to become more carefree, I plan on cultivating the demeanor of a 1980’s high-school movie super-villain. More specifically I have decided to model my new identity after the heart-
Fascist and loose ISRAEL DELEON This is a response to Michael Veremans’ op-ed piece, “Universal Healthcare and the Capitalist Dilemma.” The thing to realize about our healthcare industry is that it is Fascist. For those of you who don’t know what fascism is, it is the merger of public and private property. For example, private hospitals have to follow state regulations, pay property taxes and abide by whatever governing authority the state imposes. Whatever Obama’s healthcare plan includes, it won’t be socialist because the means of production will stay in private hands. Veremans states that pharmaceutical companies have lobbied the state and raised drug prices through their efforts. While this is partially true, it misses the real cause which is government interference. Thanks to the FDA, pharmaceutical companies have to jump through legal hoops and then wait months or years before their drugs come onto the market. We also have the problem of government forcing insurance companies to cover the costs of certain drugs. When insurance companies are forced to pay for drugs, pharmaceuticals charge a higher price because insurance companies have no choice but to pay. Of course, those without insurance bear the brunt of the full cost. And let’s not forget that big pharmaceutical companies can lobby for preferential treatment. Without a state, the fascist scheme falls apart. Another thing Veremans points out is that elecUNION WEEKLY
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breakingly self-righteous Steff, as portrayed by James Spader in the 1986 film Pretty in Pink. Besides the fact that he’s a God, think back real hard and tell me when being like Ducky has gotten you anywhere. The person you poured your heart into making mix-tapes for used you and thinks you’re a creep. Would it not prove more productive to amble over to the object of your desire in your finest slouchy white blazer and demand to know why you’re still not together? Steff couldn’t care less about what people think of him. I’m not quite sure why his basic mode of operation gets such a bad rep; after all he symbolizes the epitome of determination. Now, this character study is not as much about becoming an asshole as it is finding a sense of power. Imagine how nicely this can work for academic prospects. The next time you want a grade changed, saunter into a professor’s office hours, don’t take off your sunglasses, and just say “So, chief ” (make sure to pause for the greatest dra-
matic effect), “about that paper.” You may now take off your sunglasses and look your professor in the eye. The balls in his court, feel free to walk out knowing that your awe-inspiring poise said everything that needed to be said. Finally, I’ll need to become an enigma: it’s a proven fact that the less people know about you, the cooler you are. Steff never explicitly tells us where his parents are, but yet he’s constantly throwing drunken orgies and running around his house in his underwear. Does the kid even have parents? Maybe they died, or perhaps he’s just independently wealthy. Ambiguity will always work in one’s favor. I’m so ready to break away from my congeniality and discretion and tear down this institution, all the while sporting aviators and some seriously corporate inspired apparel. When I walk by, people might whisper, look away, or cry, but I won’t care.Thanks to my newly found air of superiority, I’ll know I’m the greatest with every drag of my cigarette.
A REBUTTAL TO "UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE AND THE CAPITALIST DILEMMA" (9/09)
tive surgery in the U.S. is a booming industry. This is because it is one of the least regulated sectors. This is why many advances in plastic surgery have been made all while lowering costs. Also, there’s no AMA, limiting the pool of doctors performing plastic surgery. Therefore, we have more plastic surgeons per person which lowers prices. What the AMA does do is limit the supply of doctors by requiring them to attend a minimum of seven years of college where they have to learn a wide variety of skills instead of specializing in one field, such as brain surgery or podiatry. This drives up the price of labor because instead of having a doctor who specializes in dermatology, you have a guy who spent seven years learning just about everything there is to know about the human body. Which do you think would cost more: A netbook that mainly just does internet and word processing, or a laptop that does everything? The same goes for doctors. A disturbing trend I’ve been noticing is that people tend to be against profits, especially in healthcare. What these people should realize is that profits create incentive to innovate, compete and lower prices. And let’s not forget that profits are a two-way street. Sure, the entrepreneur gets a profit, but the customer also gets something in return. Both are exchanging things they value for something they value more. And in a true free-market, not this fascism we have now, obscene profits would be less prevalent due to increased competition.
JAMIE KARSON & BRIAN WALTON
College , you are a demon bitch! The freshman experience is not all it's cracked up to be FOLASHADE ALFORD
o far college is awesome. To be honest, this isn’t what I thought college would be like post-high school. I envisioned independence being a shitty dorm room with a loft bed, getting a job and having to make my own way. Oh and I wanted to get the hell out of my house. This all sounded so glamorous to me that if you’d asked me last year if I’d be living at home and going to CSULB I would’ve laughed at you, really fucking hard. Here’s what I’ve gathered so far (and mind you I’m a fucking expert now): the Math 113 professor can’t speak English. I imagine this is the norm among the math and science department because Asians are geniuses and are shipped directly to the US after birth. Not that I’m racist, but there does happen to be a correlation.
Other cultures are great, but straining to decipher the hidden intricacies of math equations with an accent proves to make everyone’s life more difficult. Chemistry will suck because nobody likes it unless you’re one of those freaks whose girlfriend is a beaker. You’ll be doing a lot of tutoring, and frustration will ensue with the general population. It does make my situation a little more frightening when the professor leans back in his chair, sets his hands atop his head with eyes closed and begins to lecture, holy shit. This is going to be a long semester. Apparently he’s been teaching this course for twenty years, but really? I’m terrified. By the way, if you totally fail at something from here on out the “forgive me I’m a freshman” excuse and the doe eyes have been officially exhausted.
I love not having class before eleven o’ clock. I understand that this is a rarity among freshmen and a privilege normally enjoyed by upper classmen. To all those eight o’ clock classers, your time will come. Tuesday is my new favorite day of the week. No class until three-thirty jealous? One thing that attracts me to this college business is no cliques. There’s no feeling that you must fit into one specific section. Can anyone honestly say there is only one group of people you “click” with? Everybody overlaps, because people have more than one interest. So there are many things to be involved in on campus. Answer me this, who’s that weird kid on campus? We’re all zany in our own way. If you think you’re not then you must be the creep on campus. Don’t be ashamed, I’m crazy too.
I know you guys are out there, the freshmen, Long Beach natives, living at home and still taking shit from your parents. You’re all in the same boat as me. Think about it, we’re not that old, we’re only 18 (I hope). It’s not like we’re 30 and still loafing around. So let’s be proud, or we can just cry together. Support group anyone? I’ll make cookies! Being at home will make your life easier and terrible at the same time. I will personally talk to your parents if you like, parents love me…I think. I don’t know what your reason is, but we decided to stick around. Maybe you got totally boned by the UC’s (UCSD, we have beef), you didn’t have any money, or you genuinely wanted to go here. Whatever the reason, we’re here now so let’s totally fuck this year up. Take that any way you want.
September 16, 2009 10a.m.-1p.m. September 18, 2009 12-4p.m.
University Student Union Room 204 For more info: email@example.com • (562)985-7021 UNION WEEKLY
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SPORTS BLACK AND GOLD SABBATH CSULB MEN’S WATER POLO LOST TO USC 3-12, BUT METAL WAS IN THE WATER (NOT LITERALLY) KEVIN O’BRIEN
Above: Shane Luth, #10, uses his mutant powers to create a protective sheet of ice, and then his human powers to pass to a teammate. Seriously metal. Right: Justin Koeppen, #5, shoots a free throw? Double bass. Below: Kevin Mundia, #14, slams the ball into the net similar to a metal guy slamming on drums.
pectator sports necessitate a degree of entertainment; to exist they must capture the interest of the crowd while maintaining a state of civility so as not to offend the masses. Baseball, football, basketball, all have rules, all have regulations, and all still maintain a vast public interest while sustaining a multi-billion dollar industries. However, water polo is not among this number. Water polo goes beyond civil modern entertainment. Water polo is a brutal pastime. Water polo is fucking metal. Some may argue that it is just a reality of the game that every water polo participant understands, evaluates, and then accepts before they take part. But believe me when I say there is a difference between the usual contact associated with sports and the true brutality of water polo. I have seen the ideal of sports, people working together towards a common goal. My time on the Long Beach crew team stands as a fitting tribute to the civility that sports can attain. However, I have also bared witness to the barbarity that is possible in sports. Water polo is not alone, precedents in physical abuse have been set, my little brother played AYSO soccer for five years, at those game I saw man’s inhumanity towards his fellow man, broken kneecaps and red cards strewn
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all over the field. However, even AYSO pales in comparison to water polo. Last Saturday I witnessed this brutality in play, deep in the churning waters of the CSULB pool. Last Saturday at noon, the ninth ranked CUSLB water polo team faced off against the number one ranked USC water polo team. Both teams stood in a line end to end on the edge of the pool. Each player’s name was called out to the crowd, a curt applause from the crowd followed each, then the players plunged into the water as a metal version of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony blared over the loudspeakers. A harsh whistle sounded and the game began with a dash for the ball. With USC in possession, they drove towards the goal. Black and yellow caps swarmed down the pool, they resembled a swarm of sea-going hornets, compared to the distinctly un-metal cute white caps of the USC players. Fist pumping passes sent the ball skipping off of water and towards the goal. The Long Beach goalkeeper rose out of the water, arms spread like an iron eagle but to no avail. USC gained an early and sizeable lead. Beneath the waves, fists connect with torsos and heels were jammed into thighs, briefly hands could be seen clasped over faces. Long Beach had its champions: Petrovic, Mundia, and Luth all managed to
get a goal in on the USC machine. The final score was 12-3, perhaps if we were four times better we would have won, but we didn’t, instead we were lambs led to the slaughter, but easily the most metal lambs ever, ones covered with a Golden Fleece, or
steel wool. The match came to a close, USC had won, we had lost, somehow the water wasn’t stained red with blood and water polo was forever engrained in my brain matter as some of the most metal shit ever. Water polo is metal as fuck.
the influence of internet phenomena on society or how lolcats changed my life ERIC LOPEZ
s a single measurement of cultural thought, memes are found and spread everyday through media, interpersonal relationships, politics, pop culture, the list goes on. There is not a single word that comes out of our droll little mouths that can not be derived from some unwary joke or cultural allusion. It is through these small units of social memes that we construct a kind of social identity; we use these means to propagate a stream of cultural ideas, resulting in a social evolution. Social memes are the cultural DNA which make up the model of our current society; I was told that such a statement is too broad to hold up in any real discussion of social identity—true, but it does not discredit memes as an aspect of our cultural development. Memes offer an understanding of a culture, as well as keep it alive. And though that sounds like something positive, it also presents the existential dilemma of sacrificing our reality for imitation, replacing our true identities with millions of replicated memes and losing all grasp of who we really are. But that’s another story. In the meantime, go to icanhascheezburger.com and look at funny cats all day—I promise, it’s worth losing a bit of self-worth for. -Kathy Miranda, Culture Editor Greetings, I hail from the dark corners of a mysterious place filled with mostly useless content and infinite porn. Yes, I am from the Internet and I do not come in peace. As if the first sentence wasn’t weird enough, I’m about to mindfuck you with obscure and random shit that will guarantee that you will put this article down and beg to unread what you have just read. An internet meme is an inside joke of sorts that makes its way through the interwebs and is often regarded by most normal people as just plain, weird shit. So
what is so special about them, and why do I even care if you care? Well, some of these memes are becoming mainstream at an alarming rate and knowing what they are and what they mean may make your life a lot funnier. The good ol’ “Rickroll” is never gonna give you up, never gonna let you down and unfortunately, it’s never gonna stop running around and desert us all. Yes, as you may have guessed it is a song but not just any song; it’s the world’s most obnoxious song and it’s the Internet’s equivalent to a “Fuck You.” It has gained popularity through YouTube and instant messaging, amounting to 24 million views on just one of the hundreds of uploads geared to different audiences. So, how do you Rickroll someone? YouTube search Rickroll, then IM a buddy and send them the link. Tell them it’s a celebrity up-skirt shot or a new movie trailer. Then, bask in victory for making them excited only to be greatly disappointed by a shitty song. I’ve been Rickroll’d countless times, most of which I half-expected. However, this one special time when I was watching the Thanksgiving parade last year, Rick Astley, came out on a float and started singing—biggest Rickroll evah! It can be argued that the Rickroll paved the way for the uber sexy “2girls1cup” video. The video starts off with two attractive women making out and getting hot. When clothing starts coming off, the protagonist is introduced, the cup. What’s so special about the cup? You’ll just have to search for it. These memes are only the tip of the iceberg. There is the Peanut Butter Jelly Time, banana phone, lolcats, goatse.cx, Chris Cocker, Chocolate Rain, etc. I’m pretty sure Family Guy
pretty much feeds off of these for new content. So next time you are watching TV and some weird obscure shit comes up that you don’t understand, it’s probably from the Internet and chances are these memes have been around for a couple of years before they went mainstream.
BRIAN ENO: 77 MILLION PAINTINGS KATHY MIRANDA
O, THAS A LOTTA OF PAINTINGS < ( ^_^ ) >
“Time is the medium we live in.” With his experience as a musical composer, Eno uses -Brian Eno on 77 Million Paintings the conceptual frame of time, required of making music, Brian Eno’s new light installation, 77 Million Paintings is and applies it to the visual arts by manipulating vivid a collection of hand-drawn images uploaded into a computer images to a hushed but animate sound. His manipulation and projected onto a screen in a randomized fashion. Set is completely arbitrary though, an unpredictable art to an ambient score composed by Eno, the installation that takes on its own life. He describes this approach as combines both sound and generative software to illuminate a “time-based, long narrative, visual art.” Eno wants to different permutations of single images. Eno’s software takes capture the mind in a state of submission, to have the elements of an image and combines them with other images viewer willingly surrender to the light. The images do so to produce new arrangements. By using the medium of light seductively, luring you into this kind of sacred space of and visual multimedia, computer graphics and projection, introspection, into a reflection of your own mortality. the viewer is stimulated into a state of visual “surrender.” To catch a single repeated image, you’d have to watch the It isn’t the execution that is innovative, more the exhibit for about 450 years. And at his previous exhibitions, countless visual representations of color and shape that people have been known to stay for hours watching the THIS IS WHAT BRIAN ENO’S ART LOOKS LIKE IN 2D, BLACK AND emerge from the programmed software. Eno says of light work, getting lost in the infinity of design. WHITE. VISIT THE UNIVERSITY ART MUSEUM TO VIEW THESE the work, “When I look at this, I see things that I didn’t The Carpenter Performing Arts Center will be hosting An VISUAL PAINTINGS IN AN EXPLOSION OF COLOR! NOW! predict, because I can’t possibly have seen 77 million Evening with Brian Eno to discuss his multimedia installation combinations yet…so there will be unique moments in artists makes defined, finished things which the public then 77 Million Paintings on September 20th, 2009 at 7pm. His this for every viewer, and every viewer’s experience will be looks at…this is like creating a seed and planting into your exhibit will be on display at the University Art Museum until somewhat different. We’re used to in the past to the idea that monitor and it grows into whatever it grows into.” December 13th, 2009. UNION WEEKLY
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ome Depot is a place for household projects, construction supplies, expensive paint and migrant workers. You can buy all of the supplies needed for a new shed, hire three guys to work for five bucks an hour and have it completed the same day. It’s a land of cheap dreams for the upper middle class. The men waiting outside Home Depot abide by your rules. No contracts, no permits, no problem. Hell, you don’t even have to pay them if you really don’t want to. Convenience is key in America and the migrant workers outside of Home Depot will accommodate all of your needs. When you pull in to the parking lot of Home Depot, fifty pairs of eyes follow your car hoping that you need new sidewalk cement to be laid, a backyard shed to be built or your prized rose bushes to be pruned. Anything to make a buck. They’re all migrant workers. Some of them are one hundred percent legal, others would run at the first glimpse of a white unmarked van headed their way. Six days a week they patiently wait from eight in the morning until seven at night. Somedays they may land three or four jobs, sometimes they’ll go a week without working at all. It’s a gamble standing out there everyday. When a car drives by slowly you can hear the men shout, “I’ll work for seven dollars! I’ll work for 50 bucks for the whole day!” Many of them are looked over. Maybe the’re too old or not skilled enough. Maybe they ask for too much money because they refuse to lower their standards. It all depends on the driver of the car. Many of the men are homeless. Not because of drug abuse or mental health problems, but because they send every cent that they earn back to their families. Everybody’s got to eat, even the immigrants. The San Diego canyons are where they call home. They sleep in stables or in nearby caves. These are the hardest working men that I have ever met and they have nothing. Some of the men were willing to share their stories, while others chose to hide themselves for fear that we were from Immigration. Most, if not all of the men had experienced extreme discrimination while looking for work. Some days glass bottles were thrown at them, protestors may show up with misguided signs about illegal aliens, racial slurs are screamed from passing cars and the police have been called several times. On the job, it seems that they encounter the same behavior from the people that hire them. Many times they don’t get paid for the work that they’ve completed. Usually, there is no water or food provided, even on days when they work for six or seven hours. When asked what they thought about President Obama’s immigration policies, many of them thought that he has been ineffective during his time in office. They were glad to see that he had taken responsibility for the violence occurring both at the border and in Mexico, but saw little hope for change in terms of immigration policy. It’s 98 degrees outside and it’s only eleven o’ clock. All of the men look dehydrated and exhausted. Luckily, the volunteers from Border Angels show up. Border Angels is a non-profit organization founded by Enrique Morones, a long time immigration activist. Their mission is to protect those traveling across the border. With all of the violence happening down south, many of those people need protection. Morones started Border Angels because while he was living in San Diego he discovered that there were a collection of people living in the canyon. Shocked by this, he then brought water and blankets into the canyon for those who needed it. Since then, he has become one of the biggest names in human rights activism. With the help of more than 1200 volunteers, Morones sets up rescue stations along the Mexican border for immigrants coming into America. Water drops are also arranged so that those crossing the border do not suffer from extreme dehydration. Day labor camps are also frequented by Border Angels to ensure that water and food are provided. Often times, the meeting times and places are kept a secret because there is the fear that the Min-
ute Man Civil Defense Corps will show up, guns waving and that violence will ensue. Thousands have died because of racial prejudice and misrepresented beliefs about immigration. Border Angels are also working to inform the American public about immigration and to prevent any more lives from being lost. It is the common belief amongst most Americans that undocumented workers cost millions of dollars in taxpayers’ money. This is entirely true. Many of their children attend our public schools, they use American hospitals and they set up residency in our country. What most Americans don’t know is that, as a whole illegal aliens pay $80,000 more in taxes in one year than they receive from the government. It is easy to understand how many people can blame immigrants on the rise in unemployment because they provide cheap labor, but in reality it is their cheap labor that keeps the costs of our everyday products down. Their cut in pay attributes to inexpensive food, plastics, etc. There are many people who believe that all who cross the border are criminals. Most of the people coming into America are not doing so to contaminate the United States, but simply to make a
living. It is these arguments that are the root of the prejudice and discrimination that all immigrants experience. With the help of organizations such as Border Angels, these injustices can be reversed and the journey to fair immigration policy can begin. The Border Angels mission is simple. They want to save people’s lives. At the core of what they’re all about, they are a humanitarian group working for the greater good. Even if you don’t agree with their politics, you can at least be understanding of their purpose. They are American. Our country was founded by immigrants. Immigrants who didn’t own the land, who didn’t speak the native language and who decided to make their lives better. They took what opportunities were available to them. Our forefathers built a great nation because their homeland wasn’t providing what they needed. America took us in, let’s help the lives of others by letting them cross our borders. They are the tired, they are the poor, they are the huddled masses. You’re an immigrant, I’m an immigrant, and all of the men standing outside of Home Depot are immigrants.
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JUNK FOOD FOR THE SOUL ADMITTING IS THE FIRST STEP
o, here’s the thing, my very first CD was a Bette Midler album called Bath House Betty. My parents bought it for me, not because they were lame, but because I had explicitly asked for this CD for Christmas since the previous September when I saw Midler sing “From A Distance” on a PBS special. I’ll never forget my mom saying, “Don’t you want a Mariah Carey one instead?” No. No I didn’t. My love for the poor man’s Barbara Streisand (that is what Midler is considered by many of her fans [I understand that possessing this bit of trivia makes me even more lame]) is just the surface of a very embarrassing musical collection that also includes several actual Barbra Streisand albums. I know every word to every song in Carousel, Oklahoma and Rogers and Hammerstein’s: Cinderella. And I love Bonnie Raitt. Oh, another important thing to note here is that I didn’t have an iPod until about a
week ago (my aunt gave me her old one because she now has an iPhone) so I literally could not hide my stupid music collection anywhere but in my closet, which is exactly where all of it is. I understand there’s a lot of music fans out there that spend hours planted in front of their computer, looking for that next great band to tell all their friends about. But I think most of life comes down to a good mix of Junk and Stuff. If you sit around only listening to Joanna Newsom (stuff), never giving into the occasional Spice Girls moment (junk), you will eventually devolve into what I like to call a “blowhard.” It’s just that sometimes I don’t want to listen to “good” music. Sometimes I want junk. Sometimes I need junk. I feel the same way about food and movies. Sure, a nice filet mignon with and caramelized onions and garlic mashed potatoes is a great meal, but if I’m feeling like a sad, bloated, failure for the
day, you’re not gonna catch me at The Stinking Rose talking about Koyaansqatsi over a good port. No. You will however catch a Facebook status that reads something like: “Caitlin Cutt. Big Mac. Two-buck Chuck (Zin). Sweet Home Alabama. Talk tomorrow.” But back to Junk and Stuff, before you go out and tell everyone that some chick in the Union Weekly said your copy of Celine Dion’s The Colour of My Love is cool, let me tell you that this confessional comes with a qualifier: the only way I get away with knowing “Copa Cabana” by heart (and I do) is that I do my best to maintain a healthy level of acceptance. I know the difference. Some of my music is shit. But it’s my shit. If you want to go out and buy Taylor Swift’s new album, go ahead. I will happily listen to it with you. I’ll learn the words and sing along. But just don’t confuse her with Leonard Cohen. He’s written some good Stuff.
BETTER KNOW A GENRE: GERMANIC OPERA SIMONE HARRISON
While most people aren’t exactly obsessed or would even consider themselves a fan of Germanic Opera, I most certainly am. The first opera I ever saw was Hansel and Gretel. From thenceforth I was in love. The kind of love mostly reserved for men with beards or fine Swiss Chevre cheese. If you’re a newbie to German opera or even just classical music in general, here’s a starter’s guide that is sure make even the most hardcore Grind fans reconsider thrashing their bodies around like angry ballerinas.
One of the most famous pieces of music ever created is Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte (translated The Magic Flute). Some of the most beautiful arrangements for the female voice are found within the score. What can probably be considered the most famous pieces known to man, the Queen of the Night aria is recognizable to anyone with one ear (sorry to those of you with uni-ear syndrome). The libretto (words) was written by Mozart’s friend and has been railed on since it’s premier. It’s a confusing plot, but a romantic one. It’s a tale of true love that must endure two acts of magical mystery to survive. If you’ve ever seen Apocalypse Now or watched an episode of the Looney Tunes, then I’m sure you’ve heard The Ride of the Valkyries. The piece is the opener for the third act of Die Valkyries, Richard Wagner’s masterpiece. Known for his dramatic and boisterous material, he was the Ozzy Osbourne of music. His influence can still be heard through the fuzz guitars of heavy metal music. Not everyone understood what he was trying to do, but then again I’m not exactly
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on board with Slayer either. The entire opera is purely epic (yes, that word you use for everything mildly exciting). Salome is one of the most depressing and beautiful operas ever written. Richard Strauss, probably lesser known to the Jay-Z-loving kids, wrote the score and sets the tone for the saddest opera you’ll ever sit through. To give you an idea, at the end of the opera the title character kisses the lips of her lover’s severed head and then is immediately killed thereafter. The instrumentation is unique in that it utilizes an impressively large orchestra and requires an almost perfect vocal prowess. It is rarely performed in this day and age, but it is a classic that is revered in the operatic community. If you’re at all interested in scoping out the world of Germanic opera, this is the good stuff. Start off slow. German is not a beautiful language by any means. It sounds like Morgan Freeman’s voice played backwards. Don’t be afraid though, it’s worth it. It’s packed with drama, so it’s almost like watching Daisy of Love (maybe not). I dare you to listen to any of these and not look over at your friend and say, “Holy shit man, that’s intense.”
Maybe I’m just a bitter person, but I feel like music has lost the sense of community it once had. I’m not entirely sure when we lost it or if we were even alive to know it to begin with. I’ve always been a big supporter of new technology changing music for the better, but it seems that the convenience of iPods, cellphones, digital cameras, and the internet have taken one of the most vital components of the music listening experience away. The iPod has turned us into automata, walking around campus with earbuds, creating a personal soundtrack at the expense of social interaction. Where once we shared and loved music because it represented our generation, our youthful disposition, we now covet music to ourselves. I believe there was a time when we could walk through a record store and see what albums our friends were turning over in their hands. There was a time when we would calculate the meaning of a mixtape a friend made, turn it over in the cassette player, and wonder what insights we could make into the minds of the ones we loved. There was a time when concerts were an opportunity to connect with the audience and the musicians on stage—to feel like we were a special brand of people who all decided to go to this concert because we loved the music for all the same reasons. But I find, more often than not, that my friends experience concerts through the lens of their cameras. It’s as if saying they saw The Arcade Fire is more important than actually seeing them. But maybe I’m just a bitter person. If you have ever received the honor of sitting in the passenger seat of my car, chances are high that the song you hear on my stereo was selected because I knew you would be sitting there. I’m dying to start a conversation about the music, but I usually don’t get a reaction. I wonder if it’s because that person doesn’t want to admit they don’t know the song and, if they do, they don’t like the idea that someone else is listening to “their” music. At this point I’ve come to terms with the rarity of musical conversations and so, if the passenger so much as taps their hands on their knees, I notice. That has become a sufficiently shared musical experience for me—and that’s sad. Do we recommend music to our friends to let them know we heard of it first, or because we genuinely think they’d enjoy it? Do we download music just to fill our iTunes library, or do we actually give ourselves the pleasure of listening to it? I suppose it’s like anything else—everything we could want is at our fingertips. We don’t need to spend time flipping through books at the library, we don’t need send letters in the mail, we don’t need to buy a newspaper, we don’t need to go to the record store, and that’s all fine—great, in fact—but what’s the point if we don’t take advantage of all this information? The great audiophile is a dying species and I feel I can’t connect to anyone if they aren’t willing to take out their earbuds, plug into a stereo, and share what they love, how they feel, and what they like with me. Sure, it puts you in a vulnerable position—those listening may not like your taste, they may make false assumptions about you because of what you like, they may hurt your feelings—but that means there’s hope. If someone insulting your music feels like they’re insulting you, it means you feel a deeper connection with it. And that’s worth it to me.
MUSE’s new album FAILS TO INSPIRE IF YOU AREN’T ALREADY A FAN, DON’T BOTHER AARON KOSAKA
use’s latest album, The Resistance, has been approached with skepticism among the music community. There are those who hope that it’s a return to the Absolution and Origin of Symmetry days, while there are others who hope that Muse continues their electronic and pop influenced work such as Black Holes and Revelations. Thankfully, The Resistance is a little bit of both, which makes it a wellbalanced album that can cater to the tastes of any fan. It combines the grooves and riffs that made Origin of Symmetry such a success with the pop sensibilities that made Black Holes and Revelations such a hit in 2006. There are a couple of weak points in the album, but that doesn’t stop it from being a very solid release. Muse has always impressed people with their ability to change their style of writing and still manage to churn out hit after
hit. This album is no exception—the lead single “Uprising” is a pounding rocker with a Blondie-esque riff and powerful lyrics ‘With all the green belts wrapped around our minds/And endless red tape to keep the truth confined,’ which parallel the political turmoil which grips the United States today. Muse also channels the power of Queen in “The United States of Eurasia” with scorching hot guitar licks and choir embellishment on key phrases. Unfortunately, Matthew Bellamy’s lyrics range from the awe-inspiring “Flick the switch and open your third eye, you’d see that/We should never be afraid to die,” to trite, cliché, and groan-inducing. Bellamy croons “If we live our life in fear/I’ll wait a thousand years/Just to see you smile again,” and one can’t help but compare it to an insincere, half-assed attempt to get in a chick’s pants by telling her how beautiful she is.
(You, fair reader, are the said metaphorical chick who Matt Bellamy is trying to bone. And by bone, I mean take your money.) Another dispiriting aspect of the album is the poppier nature of some of the songs. Looking through Muse’s back catalogue, you’ll be reminded of glorious rockers like “Hysteria” or “Bliss,” and wonder to yourself, “Why don’t they make songs like that anymore?” The answer is they’re too busy making songs like “Undisclosed Desires,” which is probably the poppiest song Muse has created to date, and it sounds like something that should be played in a club rather than on this album. It sounds out of place and is definitely the weakest track on the album. But all these disparaging remarks are not here to say that The Resistance is a terrible album. The three part “Exogenesis: Symphony” is a very beautiful piece with lush instrumentation and meticulous arrangement. “Unnat-
ural Selection” contains soaring vocals and crunchy guitars that you would expect from a Muse song, and “MK Ultra” is a spacey jam brimming with electronic effects. The Resistance is a solid album, and a definite listen for any Muse fan, but I wouldn’t consider it one of their more significant works. Like Black Holes and Revelations, it will experience a surge of popularity, but will fall to the wayside as just another harmless Muse album.
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ENTERTAINMENT THE HEADLESS WOMAN
A REVIEW OF A MOVIE ABOUT REMEMBERING TO FORGET
t is a sad state of affairs for independent and art films nowadays. Films, if they even make it to theatres, often play for only a week or so, then disappear spending several months or years in limbo until they come out on DVD. Does the paying public not want art films anymore or is corporate control of movie theaters trying to shut out the smaller films? Ten to fifteen years ago, that was not the case, as films such as Lucrecia Martel’s The Headless Woman would have been given a chance to find their audience. The Headless Woman is the antithesis of the summer fare some of us having suffering through for the last three months: it is a slow, obtuse, disorienting, and difficult film to watch. It is also the best film I have seen so far this year. Martel, part of the New Argentine Cinema, has been an interesting director the past few years, making such films as The Holy Girl and La Cienaga, but this film is a huge leap for her artistically. The film’s premise is simple: A mother, Vero (Maria Onetto), drives home from a family gathering and runs over something. Initially, she
thinks she has run over a dog, but later on becomes convinced that she has run over a human being. The film is framed entirely from her dazed, anxiety-ridden perspective, as she tries to figure out if what she hit was walking on two legs or four. Everyone tries to convince her that it’s nothing, that she just hit a dog, yet they all seem to be covering up for her. Do we ever learn the truth? There are clues littered throughout the film for one to decipher. Then again, a finality is not important to the film, it is the journey there and the trip we get to take inside Vero’s head. The acting is superb, with the entire cast delivering effortless performances that seem real and feel natural. As strange as Vero’s behavior is at times, it never seems irrational, and despite a world of uncertainty around her, she continues to try to strive forward. We get put into her frame of mind through the way the film is put together. It lacks the niceties of more conventional fare, eschewing things such as establishing shots and traditional framing and lighting. Parts of the film feel as if it shouldn’t been
put together this way, which is its exact purpose. The Headless Woman is meant to mess with you as a viewer, to make you uncomfortable. Martel’s style in the film is something similar to David Lynch or David Cronenberg without the horror framing. The film has a darkness to it, even when everything is in broad daylight. Martel’s film is brilliant, a mediation between a woman struggling to come to grips with something she may or may not have done and those who enable her. It is a difficult film to watch, one that never insults your intelligence, but is worth the struggle to get through it in the end, as it will stick with you for a long time. It will frustrate you, confound you, but it will also feel momentous, as you are watching a grand work of art. Go see The Headless Woman before it is too late, before it gets replaced with a Sandra Bullock comedy or Saw 15 or even worse, some sort of Indiewood movie.
4.5 out of 5 exclamations!
Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles 2009 Wrap-Up MICHAEL VEREMANS Standing behind the curtains next to a huge white film screen with a chair in my hand, I waited for my cue to furnish the stage. The credits for Jackson 5 in Africa finished rolling and the audience sat in silence until the technical director turned up the lights, illuminating the theater of the AT&T Center. I placed the chairs in the center of the stage and Roger Mayer walked up to the podium to MC the awards ceremony. It was Saturday, August 22nd, 2009—closing night of the Downtown Film Festival, Los Angeles. Downtown has been undergoing a brisk revitalization that seems to be taking, nurturing a bourgeoning arts scene that reflects the high-swaying bank buildings, century old loft mazes, wholesale warehouses, and skid row inmates that make LA beautiful. The film festival is a direct synthesis of this renaissance, encompassing film screenings, art shows, discussion panels, and experiUNION WEEKLY
mental cinema demonstrations, not to mention the bacchanalian networking events that raged into the depths of the night. A slew of independent cinema buffs and filmmakers converged on the city like a smog layer to glimpse at more than two hundred features, short films, and art films, screened in venues across the city center. City of Angles, the avant-garde art show, projected experimental films non-stop onto the walls of the AT&T Center Cinema Lounge, which were as startling as they were intricate and The Engine—a two ton transportable theatre—showcased the dankest digs of the LA underground. There was also an eye-opening series of low-budget 3D short films, which spanned genres never before exposed to the next dimension of film. Feature events from the 12-day cinematic whirlwind included the Spike Lee’s opening night filmic presentation of Stew’s play Pass-
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ing Strange, a breathtaking portrait of the international existential crisis of an LA musician. Seymour Cassel was given a Lifetime Achievement Award during the centerpiece event, complete with clips from his various movie roles, words from his friends, and a speech by the man himself at the podium, all followed by his most recent film, Reach for Me, directed by Levar Burton. And keep your peepers peeled for the subtle but literal heroin humor of award winning director Jeff Orgill’s Boppin’ at the Glue Factory, the underdog hit of the fest. One of the festival’s most forward emphases was its utilization of aspiring director/producers and PR butterflies from film, marketing, and arts departments across the country, among them, me, as staff. We got the unique chance to build our chops working the festival alongside industry veterans, who were only too happy to impart wisdom
and advice (“Don’t drink and work, unless you can drink and work. Like me.”). Speaking of drinking, this wild foray into the broad world of LA independent art and film festival production wouldn’t have been complete without a comprehensive program of before and after parties. From rooftops galas to subterranean bank vaults to the finest restaurants the city has to offer, sponsored drinks flowed as industry professionals and burgeoning creative forces networked. By the end of twelve days trafficking prints and schmoozing, I knew most of the people involved and the initially anonymous parties became a community I was proud to be a part of. Ideal for getting insider experience, developing professional contacts, and celebrating independent film look out for the DFFLA next year and other opportunities to get involved in your local art scene.
LITERATURE So it Has Come to This Anne Sexton at 3:15 am
t would be presumptuous to try and describe the feeling Anne Sexton’s poetry elicits; the relieved yearning of “Kiss,” the frankness and appeal to cynicism within “Letter Written On A Ferry While Crossing Long Island Sound;” the desperation and frustration brought about by “Ambition Bird;” So I won’t. Upon reading any of Sexton’s highly personal and daintily complex poems, you too might find a growing craving for the language she speaks so well. Tied down by her earthly being, Sexton lived as a complete paradox. Elegant and tall, she exuded sophistication, even modeling for a time while living in Boston. Though regardless of her outwardly solid veneer, Sexton’s life had been rudely and without fail punctuated with lapses of confusion, helplessness and desperation. I revere this broken idol. Her constant struggle to cultivate a balance between feminine strength and vulnerability really turns me on. Never afraid of the proverbial Man, Sexton ran ahead of her own time. The original mama, Sexton’s work broke through taboos as she suffered a barrage of criticism from her male contemporaries. She ferociously spoke openly on the then-unmentionable subjects of menstruation, masturbation, and adultery from a candid and sincere female point of
view. Albeit rooted in femininity, her ideas are universal and completely human. Sexton intimately crafts images that are so personal, a reader would be hard pressed to not believe that Sexton’s passages speak, shout, and whisper for them. Part of this, I feel, is because in writing, Sexton held a supernatural commitment to the found word image. She often times integrated typos and mistakes to paint stunning imagery and metaphors. Her wise attention to instinct makes for poetic descriptions that take one by surprise, yet are on the tip of their tongue. Sexton cultivated a commanding voice that trembled with authority. Almost interactive, Sexton seemingly speaks, and writes in silences after an atom bomb of a line, as if asking the reader, “have you finished chewing?” Unlike other fluff, Sexton’s poems are embedded in reality, often taking hold of issues straight from her own troubled life. The result is a series of exploits that that go beyond the cliché subject matter of most other poems. Selfishness underlines jealousy; tones of panic outshine moods of melancholy. Interestingly, Sexton writes with a conflicted view of the relationship between art and life. In a letter written in 1972, she wonders, “If the artist ever lives his life—he is so busy
recreating it.” She then muses, “Only as I write do I realize myself. I don’t know what that does to ‘life’.” If in fact, I was not Sexton in a past life, I would like to at least think we shared the same astrological sign. I am astounded to have found that she had not been a prudent Capricorn: methodological, and fascinated with the mysteries of religion, obsession, and immortality. Upon finding a familiarity and conviction in her words, you too might feel like an “Ambition Bird,” of the feather as I do.
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“What is this, like, moon texture?”
Volume 65 Issue 3
Monday, September 14th, 2009
Iran Dares United States to Guess Which Hand Its Nuclear Program Is In
“President” Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran (above). Not pictured: The flock of doves he just released from his arm sleeves.
BY GAELIC FORESKYNE Iran confounded the United States last week during negotiations over the middle-eastern nation’s nuclear power program. Tensions erupted when, earlier this week Iranian President Ahmadinejad forced the U.S. to choose which hand it was hiding its nuclear program in. To complicate the matters, Iran hid the program while its hands were behind its back and then shook them back and forth quickly. The event occurred during the annual Freshman Diplomat Meet and Greet at the United Nations. Secretary of State and die hard
pantsuit enthusiast Hillary Clinton was about to choose the right hand of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad before the Iranian President interrupted her by saying, “I don’t know? Are you sure?” Then he made a chuckling sound and shook his left hand briefly before saying, “Or maybe it’s this one!” Secretary Clinton then withdrew to her private hotel suite and dry-cleaned her collection of weekend hats, something she considers therapeutic. “This simply has to stop,” said a top UN official who wished to remain anonymous. He then added, “We also have it on good authority that the elections in June were decided by unleashing a goat that
they force fed hard-boiled eggs on a giant game board and seeing where it vomited first.” Earlier last week President “Elect” Ahmadinejad was asked by Iranian state-owned television station Booya TV what he would do if his nation obtained nuclear power. “And not bomb Israel off the face of the earth!” said the President, standing up slightly in his modest, but comfortable chair. He then winked so loud the audio for the interview cut out for seven minutes and one of the PA’s fainted and got a nose bleed. The remainder of the interview was reconstructed using lip readers and the cue cards he was reading off of. When the audio came back in, the President finished up an amusing anecdote about throwing protesters into a bottomless snake-pit (which is also filled with giant bugs and zither music). The two men then chuckled to each other, winked once more, and shared a non-alcoholic martini. Then they danced. The last time negotiations were this frenetic was in 1983 when the fate of Belarus’ nuclear weapons program was decided by a game of three-card monte. A top analyst stated that if then President Reagan were still alive, “He’d probably knock that shit aside and get some damn answers. Reaganomics, baby.”
Boy Scout Prepared for Everything Except Parents’ Divorce BY TANGERINE BALLS CERRITOS, CA — Five years of pens when you don’t listen to your collecting merit badges and mak- mother?” Both Lucy and Dan were ing fires never could have pre- unavailable for comment. pared Jimmy Shapiro for the news Jimmy claims that the thing that his parents, Lucy and Dan that upsets him the most is that Shapiro, will be separating later none of his Boy Scout knowledge this month. Jimmy, now 13, has could lessen the blow that came been involved in the organization with realizing that his parents known as Boy Scouts of America no longer love each other. Even since the age of eight, and has though he has learned how to always prided himself on his tie just about every type of knot dedication to what the organiza- known to man, Jimmy says he tion refers to as the Scout Motto: was unable to tie a knot strong “Be Prepared.” But even he was enough to bring his mom and shocked by the news. “I’ve made dad back together again. Witfires, put up tents, and nursed an nesses say that Jimmy has since injured bird back to health, but I been seeing crying alone in his honestly never could have seen room and hugging his pillow. this coming.” Jimmy continued Reports say that Jimmy by saying, “My parents always cheered up a little upon hearing seemed happy… Can you guys the news that he would be receivplease leave me alone now?” ing a sympathy badge later this While the reason for the di- month. vorce is still unknown, experts say Dan, Jimmy’s father, may be to blame. One such expert is Lucy’s mother Alberta, “I never liked that man, not one bit. He was never right for my little angel. I told her to marry a nice Jewish boy but she didn’t lis- Jimmy Shapiro, middle front, manages to hold himself together for ten. See what hap- one more photo with his soon-to-be-single mom hovering over him.
England Does it Again Winthrope Pompdrane recently completed his lifelong dream. “He finally did it,” the mayor of rural Devonashtonshire said, “I’m glad to see he didn’t go mad before he completed his dire task. We certainly dodged the bullet there.” The mayor said this as he cleaned his pipe aimlessly, shaking his grayed, balding head in front of his dilapidated office. “Dreadful business, that.” PAGE MI5
Son Insists to Transexual Father, “You’ll Never Be My Real Mother”
Area Man’s Deep V-Neck Reveals Lack of Pubescence
14-year-old, Ryan Jeffery asserted over a particularly awkward Labor Day barbeque that his transgendered mother Rayena Wallachowski, formerly Ray Wallachowski, could never be his real mom. “She’s not my real mom! I hate her! I hate, hate, hate her!” He then threw potato salad at the dog. Rayena replied that a person’s gender is what’s in their heart, not what is between their legs, also that she made Ryan and she can unmake him, so help her God. PAGE BO8
Shane Krautburg was publicly outed as having the clean, shorn body of a newborn babe. “He’s like one of those Bigglesworth cats. Just pink and humiliating,” said #1 fry man at Wingman’s, Dirk, who witnessed Krautburg’s revealing shirt. When questioned on the topic of not having the amenities of a typical man his age, Krautburg replied, “Yeah. Look how this breathes. You look at this medallion.” Krautburg remains blissfully unaware of his developmental lapse, as well as his puckered, primordial babydick. PAGE SVU