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Opinions: 3 News: 4 Culture: 5 Feature: 6-7 Entertainment: 8 Music: 9 Literature: 10-11

Industrial Design’s newest tech-toy takes flight P. 6


April 29 2013 Volume 72

Issue 72.13

Vincent Chavez, Editor-in-Chief

Vin’s Two Cents

Colleen Brown, Managing Editor Gabe Ferreira, Managing Editor

Letters to and from the Editor

Marco Beltran, Senior Editor Michael Wood, Opinions Editor

Vincent Chavez Editor-in-Chief

Brianne Schaer, News Director John Villanueva, Music Editor

responses. You need to remove these barriers if you want to increase participation. Also, I recommend adding a FAQ or Info section on the website.

Connor O’Brien, Entertainment Editor Wes Verner, Literature Editor Colleen Brown, Culture Editor Rose Feduk, Comics Editor Duchess of Spain, Grunion Editor Gabe Ferreira, Art Director Brian Mark, Art Director Connor O’Brien, Photo Editor Nichole Daniels, Illustration Editor Leo Portugal, Web Manager Eric Garcia, Advertising Executive Assitant Editors: Sierra Patheal, Katie Healy, Wes Young, Eddie Viramontes, Alia Sabino Staffers/Contributors: Joseph Phillips, Jon Bolin, Ben Novotny, Amy Patton, Rachel Clare, Molly Shannon, Christy Bonham, Roque Renteria, Alex Miklovic, Irene Thaiss, Nathan Moore, Rebecca Pincolini, Ryan Adams, Matthew Vitalich, Renee Moulton 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 Union weekly, not ASI or 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. Please include name and major for all submissions. They are subject to editing and will not be returned. Letters may or may not be edited for grammar, spelling, punctuation, and length. The Union Weekly will publish anonymous letters, articles, editorials, and illustrations, but 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 Questions? Comments? Corndogs? CA 90815. E-mail:

Finally, a crappy haiku: You simply do not understand the joy I get from criticism. Whether it’s coming from a class of writers in a non-fiction workshop or my ex-wife, I crave feedback. Earlier this week, a concerned reader named Renee Moulton sent me an email regarding my intro letter from last week. She had a few bones to pick with what I’d written (or more accurately, what I’d forgotten to write). I present to you an email exchange between Moulton and myself: Dear Mr. Chavez, I’m most likely going about this all wrong; however, I feel this is appropriate because that is the veritable “thesis” of your Letter to the Editor. In regard to your “Two Cents” in Issue 72.12, my main concern or comment is the overall lack of information on the Union Weekly website, within your Two Cents, and in the paper itself. After 20 minutes on Google (the only source of information any real person uses) and the Union Weekly website, I still have haven’t found a listing of when and where the staff meetings are held. Fortunately, I’ve dropped by the office, which is tucked away in a hole in the Union building, and have seen the announcement in the window. Unfortunately, I can’t make that time, and there is no plan-B listed for folks who can’t make it out to the meetings. Would it have been impossible to add the info in your Two Cents, holla? Your response may be that I should e-mail, but let’s be honest: who is going to do that? We’re college students, and we like quick fixes. We also like to avoid human interaction and prefer the immediate satisfaction of search engine answers over delayed e-mail

I’m not scared of you. I just don’t know what to do. —Creatively lost. Renee Moulton, MFA Poetry

Dear Mr. Moulton, Let me start by saying, no, no, you’re going about this all right. Feedback is always welcome; in fact, we crave it. Anyways, on to your main comment on the lack of information on meeting times. On my way to school today, I had a sad and alarming thought: I never mentioned the time or location of our meetings in my intro letter. I just plumb forgot. A small part of me did assume that this info was common knowledge amongst our readers because most issues include an advertisement for our open meetings. Unfortunately, there was no room last week for the ad, so I completely understand your confusion. As for the plan-B for those who cannot make the meetings, you’ve already done it simply by contacting me. What I mean by this is if you can’t make the meetings, email an editor. For example, if you want to write a review of The Big Wedding, send an email to the Entertainment Editor. Have a gripe with text walkers (those people who don’t look up when they’re walking and texting)? Email our Opinions Editor. All of their emails are in the staff box next to my intro letter. It would not have been impossible to add this info, but again, I am human and I make mistakes. Speaking of humanity, you mention college students’ aversion to human contact and love for instant gratification. And while

I certainly agree with that statement, my response is a vehement, “aww phooey.” Yes, the information for contributing should be more readily accessible, but if you want to contribute to this paper, you’re going to have to eventually interact with humans; it’s simply unavoidable and rightfully so. Human interaction is not a barrier; rather, it’s a necessity for successful communication. That’s why I spent twenty minutes writing you this email and why you probably spent twenty writing yours. P.S. Your recommendation of a FAQ is a fantastic idea. Can’t believe I hadn’t thought of that. Good day to you, Vincent Chavez, EIC Renee stopped by the office last Tuesday to have a chat about writing for the paper and also to inform me she was not a man. She has since become a bona fide contributor (move your eyes a few inches to the right to read her article about being mistaken for a man) and I couldn’t be happier. She’s an example of what can happen when you send your questions, comments, and ideas to our editors. We spend most of our time on the internet, so shoot us an email if you’re too busy to come to an open meeting. But by no means should you miss out on our final open meeting next Tuesday at 5pm in our office (located on the lowest floor of the USU, next to the pool tables) because there might be pizza. We’ve got one issue left this semester, but it’s never too late to get in on this. Because the Union depends on writers and artists like you. Writers like Assistant Editor Katie Healy who stepped up and wrote this week’s feature on the Industrial Design department’s creation of a drone (turn to page 6 to read more). And I’ll see you next Tuesday or on the internet. Kisses.

Union Weekly—29 April 2013



Hello, My Name is _________. How can you stay motivated when your professors don’t know your name? Renee Moulton Contributor Hi, my name is Renee Moulton, but you can call me Rebecca or Ashley or Rene. My professors do. It’s week 14 and one of my professors still can’t get my name right. So thank you Dr. Clark Zest-Cooler for being that other professor, the one who actually listened when I dropped by with my essay—you know, the one with comments addressed to Rebecca? However, I’m not giving you a full pardon since, last time I checked, a student’s first name is normally the first word on an essay. But don’t trip; your apology to the entire class ameliorated most of my discomfort. As for you, Dr. Barbara Finagle, you suck. I thought about cutting you some slack because you’re old, but now I just think about cutting you. The fact remains that there isn’t even an Ashley in the class. Also, I don’t look like an Ashley. You’re failing more than just my name, too! At week 14 you shouldn’t be

reading off the roll sheet and looking around aimlessly for someone to respond to each name. We all have our self-assigned seating arrangements, we all have the same names as when the semester began, and none of us have even changed our hair. Should we start wearing name tags at this point? And by the way, Caitlin dropped the class eight weeks ago, so stop calling on her for answers! “Rene, thank you for your concerns about student-teacher relations in regard to respect. I’ll look into this topic; it seems very comical. Also, can you turn in your essay again? I seem to have lost it.” I’ve put up with this for 14 weeks, and for all you STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) folk imagining lecture halls with 150 silent faces, let me tell you, these classes have an enrollment of less than 25. Additionally, these are discussionbased seminars, so professors are interacting

Pledging for Jim Crow Examining Lambda Theta Delta’s use of blackface Michael Wood Opinions Editor When we think about racism, it is tempting to simply relegate it to a problem of the past, an old institution slowly dismantled piece by piece over the space of hundreds of years. Those slightly to the left in our off-kilter political spectrum tend to think that racism is alive and well in this country, but only in the backwards regions of the country. Maybe racism exists in Alabama or South Carolina, but not in California, definitely not among what we presume to be the more educated members of our society. Well guess what? We still have to deal with this bullshit even in California, even in our prestigious academic institutions. As many of you may already know, Lambda Theta Delta’s chapter at the University of California Irvine posted a very offensive video skit parodying Justin Timberlake’s “Suit and Tie.” Seems like harmless fun, right? Well it might have been, if they had not used blackface in the video for a student playing the role of Jay-Z. The outrage over the video has sparked the ire of the Black Student Union on the UCI campus and has forced the administration to roundly censure their actions. The LTD chapter released a half-hearted apology, claiming ignorance within their letter of apology. However, in the original description of the video are the words, “No

racism intended” which shows that they were not ignorant. Ignorance would imply that they did not know that blackface was incredibly racist. They knew, they were just crass enough not to care. It shocks me that in the modern world, we still deal with a reconstruction-era motif in our culture. The fact that it was condemned quickly is not enough; this should never happen in a society that dares to think of itself as post-racial. Obviously we are not. Five years after the first African-American president was elected, there are still some of us in our institutions of higher education who are openly racist. In the grand scheme of things, the moronic actions of some privileged frat boys will not go down in history or even remain in the news cycle a week from now. However, we will not move forward as a society until we can see that reviving minstrel show tropes is wrong, until we treat our peers with respect and open arms, regardless of race, color, or creed. Until these seemingly small acts of racism are quashed, we will still struggle with the greater acts of racism, like the abysmal conditions of Native American reservation or the ever-present police brutality towards people of color. Until we grasp these deceptively tiny problems, we are incapable of tackling the larger ones.

with me, an outspoken know-it-all, in a faceto-face environment. What’s the excuse? This week I started asking other students about their names and interactions with their professors. This revealed some disgusting trends. For instance, tenured professors are more likely to botch or entirely forget names (Nicole or Natalie?) and there’s a growing pattern of these professors assigning questions on quizzes like “True or False: Dr. Jeff ’s PowerPoints were really cool!” (and there’s a graded answer to that!). Finally, the ugliest trend is lecturing a half-full classroom about the benefits of attending class. We know the benefits; that’s why we’re here! However, if you got some names right, maybe we might feel more obligated to show up! Most of this shoddy interaction happens in person, but I’m also noticing a spike in bungled names via email. Is it because professors can’t picture my face? But

BeachBoard now comes equipped with the option for personal icons, and, if you’re a student that cares to be identified correctly (or totally narcissistic, but then again see: identified correctly), then you probably upload a photo of yourself to make things easier. You most certainly don’t upload a Keep Calm meme or your cat. Icons aside, if a professor is responding to an email which you signed with your name, then how, without just being utterly careless, can they fuck that up?! So what’s in a name? Well, one extra “E” is the difference between Mr. and Miss Moulton, a semi-casual mistake, but embarrassing all the same. That could be the difference between me ditching class for beers in the Nugget or attending with a gameplan for discussion. Which do you prefer? So come at me pro, and learn my name.



Union Weekly—29 April 2013

The Art of Marketing What happens when business and art collide Sierra Patheal Assistant Editor

Words & Photo by Michael Wood Opinions Editor Last Saturday, the American Marketing Association held an art gala fundraiser, attempting to combine both the premises of marketing and artistic expression. Within the walls of the College of Business Administration, there were plenty of expressive displays to admire. Pictured above is Mona Ahmed, a junior International Studies major posing with her exhibit entitled, “Enchanted.” The talents of the student artists at this gala were, to say the least, exceptional, showcasing each artist’s distinctive style. From the work of Mona Ahmed, a display of doors, a bench, and a table full

of candy (which mimicked the warmth and comfort of student apartment) to Marcus Thibodeau’s exhibit of glasswork and glow-in-the-dark sketches, doodles, and musings (which feels like a look inside of a student’s mind) there was plenty of quality artwork to appreciate within the gala. But it doesn’t stop there. Caroline Ly’s exhibit was an experiment of design, showing concept sketches of a more practical and eco-friendly approach to bus stops and other fixtures around campus, but not without style. Rather than approaching this in the cold and

calculating, efficient style we are used to, she shows the possibilities of both being green and designing with personality, giving each of the fixtures a tropical feel. For five bucks, you could take in some artwork, ranging from the innovative to the heartfelt, fill yourself up with coffee and snacks, and mingle with the artists at their exhibits. The whole event was a testament to the creative minds we nurture on this campus, and I would highly recommend indulging yourself next time the artistic community on campus opens its doors. It would be time well spent.

Creative Writing Faculty Reading English Creative Writing faculty will showcase their works at the Soroptomist House on Tuesday, April 30 at 7 pm. Come celebrate the awesome creative energy here at the Beach and see whether it would be worth fitting a Creative Writing course into your schedule! If you miss the reading, Creative Writing professor Ray Zepeda will be reading from his new novel, Desperados, on Thursday, May 2 at 7pm at Gatsby Books. Free Comic Books! Saturday, May 4th is the annual Free Comic Book Day at Amazing Comics and Pulp Fiction in Long Beach! Come by and pick up some free books for summer (or procrastination during finals week). Make sure to arrive early, or all the good ones will be gone!

Union Weekly—29 April 2013



Makin’ Love at IKEA If you’re in your honeymoon phase, that is Alia Sabino Assistant Editor

Aaaaaaah yes, the joys of newfound love. The butterflies are endlessly fluttering in your stomach. The sound of their angelic voice gives you emotions you cannot explain. Everything about your new love seems fascinating and all you want to do is get to know more about them. This pretty much describes the beginning of Tom and Summer’s relationship in 500 Days of Summer where they prance around like a bunch of lovey dovey idiots. But then again, this movie is exactly why IKEA’s potential as a date spot has been widely recognized. Here are the reasons why IKEA can make for a great date: It’s a casual setting. Quit with the fancy dinners, honestly. First off, it’s too pricey. And second, it makes the two people on a date act much more polite than they usually are. Going to the movies is a solid idea but it really doesn’t allow for much conversation or interaction

for that matter (unless you’re looking for a different kind of interaction), but IKEA provides the perfect medium for strolling around and getting to know each other. They don’t give a crap if you lounge on their beds all day. At this stage of your relationship, all you want to do is get lost in their seemingly dreamy eyes. The employees here don’t care if you lie on their beds all day and ogle each other for hours. Trust me, I’ve done it before. The food is good…. And cheap. Honestly though. The meatballs have an infamous rep. Even Jake Gyllenhaal once said in an interview with Jimmy Kimmel that he brought a reporter (who was doing a story on him for Men’s Journal) to IKEA for their interview. And if Jake Gyllenhaal likes it, then you know it’s pretty damn good. You can get 15 meatballs and mashed potatoes for 3.99 and for a dollar more you can get 20

meatballs! WHAT A FREAKIN’ DEAL. It seemingly gives the relationship the chance of being long term. Since you’re still in your honeymoon phase, the prospect of spending your entire life with this person and building a life together is rather magical (unless you have an extreme phobia of commitment). And honestly, what spells out building a life together more than furniture shopping. You can muse over how many children you want while passing the kids section, or bond over what type of doorknobs you want for your house. On the flipside, when it comes to a point that the seemingly endearing things that used to enrapture you (such as they way they cutely snort when they laugh) make you want to rip your hair out, then IKEA is not a good place to go to. Whether you’ve been in a relationship for 3 years, or have been married for 15, things can get

ugly. 30 Rock did a great job of portraying this in an episode where Tina Fey and her boyfriend go to an IKEA in Brooklyn and they pass by an old couple arguing as the woman screams “You know what? I like myself. I have good taste in drapes,” and the man replies, “I wish I died in Iwo Jima and never met you.” Too much history together can equate to a conversation about tables and chairs becoming metaphors for bigger issues such as troubles with the in-laws, who makes the bigger income, and how you can barely pay your mortgage. At this point, just try to stray away from the kitchen utensils so you don’t end up stabbing each other. Bottom line is, IKEA is a great place for the newly in love. It’s for those who are still discovering each other. If you’re past this and all the mystery is gone, then don’t bother. You’ll just end up getting on each other’s nerves.

choose for the chicken include baba ganoush, hummus, steamed veggies, Mediterranean fries, and Mediterranean potato salad. The chicken itself is good too, although it can be somewhat bland without something to dip it into. Like the Caesar Sandwich, the ¼ chicken also comes with a small cup of garlic sauce on the side that you can dunk the chicken in. Besides being somewhat bland, my only other real complaint about the chicken at Chicken Dijon is that they don’t have boneless chicken. I would rather eat boneless chicken than chicken with bones in it because then I don’t have to worry about accidentally swallowing a bone or having to awkwardly find a way to get the bone out of my mouth if I accidentally

ate part of the chicken with a bone in it, which can be quite embarrassing [Editor’s Note: Ben has nightmares about this happening every night]. But other than that, the chicken there is really good. For 20 years, Chicken Dijon has been serving the community of Long Beach as well as other parts of L.A. County. Despite its expansion over the past two decades, the restaurant is still a family owned business, run by two brothers who care about the restaurant that their father built in order to create a better life for them. If you are in the mood for having anything Mediterranean, I would highly suggest Chicken Dijon, one of the best restaurants just a few miles away from the CSULB campus.

No Bones About It Chicken Dijon is fucking delicious Ben Novotny Union Staffer Located between Barnes & Noble and the AMC at the Marina Pacifica shopping center in Long Beach is a small Mediterranean restaurant called Chicken Dijon. The restaurant’s humble beginnings began 20 years ago when an unemployed accountant named Afram Nimeh, bought an unprofitable restaurant to help support his family. Just as the restaurant was starting to show a profit a year later, Nimeh died, which left the restaurant in the hands of his two college-aged sons Steven and Joseph, who are still in charge of the restaurant today. I have eaten at Chicken Dijon numerous times ever since I moved down to Long Beach. Just recently I had the Chicken Caesar Sandwich for lunch

at Chicken Dijon. For just $5.50, I ate a delicious pita bread wrapped sandwich filled with caesar salad, chicken, croutons, and dijon. My only complaint about the meal is that while the sandwich tastes even better when dipped in the garlic sauce, the garlic sauce doesn’t really tastes like garlic. Other than that I would highly recommend having the Chicken Caesar Sandwich at Chicken Dijon. In the past I have also had the ¼ chicken with the choice of two sides. Whenever I have the ¼ chicken I always order it with white meat and the sides of coleslaw and rice. The coleslaw tastes great, but the rice is especially amazing, always steamed and hot and ready to be eaten. The other two sides you can



Union Weekly—29 April 2013

UAV FOR YOU AND ME Industrial Design’s newest tech-toy

Words by Katie Healy Assistant Editor

The polystyrene body has a special compartment that holds the UAV’s brain The project team split themselves up into four parts to distribute the workload: research, launch and recovery, packaging, and documentation. The packaging group assembled the body and wings of the UAV, as well as the carbon fiber board the team nicknamed the “Brain.” The Brain is the backbone that houses all of the electronic components

They’re making drones, but not shooty-shooty, death-death drones. UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), otherwise known as the aforementioned drones, are remote control-operated mini airplanes with cameras attached to their bellies, or noses, or both. These are not the drones you’re looking for—well, not if you want to remotely control a gun, that is—but these little beauties will help in aerial mapping for and sports events, tracking for police chases, and even information collection for emergency situations like natural disasters. Here at CSULB, the Anthropology Department uses UAVs for research by gathering visual data. Unfortunately for them and the budget, each unit is really pricey when bought from currently-existing retailers, and the only two feasible options are to fork over the money

and GPS necessary to fly. The rest of the body is made out of polystyrene, so it’s as light and cheap as a package of Styrofoam cups. While polystyrene isn’t the most durable of materials, it certainly is easy to replace, should the body become damaged. This way, it isn’t overly expensive to replace damaged wings or bodies, but the Brain’s more durable carbon fiber will protect the far pricier electronic bits. On the nose is a well, where any owner can mount a front-facing camera. Because of this, the remote-control proficienado can have line-of-sight and positioning capabilities. You know, so they can see where they’re going! In the belly is the downward-facing camera, which is where the meat of the drone’s usefulness is stored. Depending on the camera you want, you can mount surveillance, the usual consumer, or infrared cameras, as Anthropology does. But whatever you do, don’t smoosh the cameras! Seriously. The only storage on these dingy-like planes is on the camera’s own memory cards. Nose dives are not advised, and belly-flops are flat out dangerous, lest you be out of data, and your luck. Fortunately, the handy-dandy launch and recovery team thought up the solution. The drones don’t have landing pads or wheels like commercial airplanes. Instead, the team tailored a mold for the second carbon fiber component: the skid board. The skid

and hope that the budget can survive it, or make one themselves. This is why the Anthropology Department approached the Industrial Design students about creating UAVs that were not only easy DIY drones, but were also units that were cheaper than, say, $15,000 per plane. They named this undertaking “Project Plane View”. The concept behind this UAV project was to create a system so that hobbyists with no engineering experience could use and assemble; a unit functional enough for cheap enough to be accessible for university and personal funding. So, the Industrial Design students, along with their pet praying the UAVs after the ID team adopted a momma praying mantis and over winter break she birthed a litter of mantis puppies), took on the project

board is the super-cool UAV sled that prevents damage to the body and to the cameras during landing and recovery. It is reminiscent of the Batmobile with its sleek design. The launch utilized their problemsolving skills, because there needed to be that same user-friendly way of getting the UAVs into the air. They created two methods (one of which is for the faint at heart). The first method is handlaunching, and the second method is rail-launching. On the belly of the plane are two finger holes for the paper-airplane punk in all of us. But the team found that lunching, rather than launching, was problematic; they weren’t happy when their drones ate it. One problem that kept occurring was the propeller sometimes hit the hand-launcher in the arm, which was painful for the plane and the person. Instead, the rail launch system is foolproof enough for even the Brain to take over the world should Pinky fail. By using spring tension, and, you know, a rail, the drone can pick up enough speed to stay airborne. This is a place where the Industrial Design teams collaborated with the Engineering department; the Designers went in with an idea, and the Engineers did magic number voodoo, and the Designers are left with the perfect angle and spring tension for the rail. No eating it required. And the reminiscent Batmobile

Union Weekly—29 April 2013

always needs its bat cave, or a purse; the drone has its very own caddy carrying case on wheels, because that’s how they roll. And because they can’t be super fly all the time, the wings can detach so they can fit into the sides of the caddy. The body fits into the caddy’s main compartment where the rest of the equipment and components would be; this way you have plenty of room for memory cards, tin foil hats, cheese, mantises, sandwiches, mantis sandwiches, or batteries as you see fit. But you probably won’t need to bring a cooler, unless you want a picnic. The drones can only stay in the air for about an hour because of weight restrictions, (you can only fit so much battery in the design). Well, at least for now. In a few years there very well may be batteries that will extend the drone’s flight time, but for now, they’ll crash land after about an hour of use. In that case, maybe you do want that sandwich and a soda. The really neat part about the project is that, once it’s finished, the drones look really friendly, maybe even adorable. I’d

almost be tempted to paint them yellow and draw a smiley face around the nose, and have the camera be the third eye. The team’s concept behind making them look so benign is to put the public’s mind at ease. Seeing a UAV flying around Long Beach might be a bit disconcerting, considering its purpose is to take footage. So, to alleviate fears as much as possible, the bodies are built look friendly. They’ll also be color-coded for their specific use, so anyone who knows the code can determine at a glance what the drone flying above their heads is used for: dark blue is police, news is royal blue, emergency is red, entertainment is purple, commercial is yellow, and research is green. If it’s black, just run, or pray. And if you’re a celebrity, well, the paparazzi can get ahold of a drone to follow you around for only $2,000 dollars. Beware! The UAV project was a really neat collaborative effort of multiple disciplines, and with their long-term goals making a design for the average Jane and Joe, I might look into getting a drone for amateur filming. It’ll be interesting if

policies for drone use need to be adjusted if they become more widely used. And you can say you were at CSULB where and when it all started. And before I drone on and on, just visit their website and Facebook page ( for your very own UAV! And while you’re at it, give the Aerospace Engineers a hug. They were sad about not being asked for their UAV rocket science know-how.

“The really neat part about the project is, once

Project Plane View seeks to make aerial photography accessible to everyone.




ENTERTAINMENT Union Weekly—29 April 2013

Photos & Words by Connor O’Brien Phototainment Editor

Smoking in the entertainment industry I recently saw Place Beyond the Pines, and I loved it. I wish I could talk about all of the perfect cinematic moments, incredible characters, twists that would make Shyamalan cream his jeans, and blabber on until I step over the line and spoil the movie for you, but I cannot. I’m more interested in how badass Luke (Ryan Gosling) appeared to me. His screen time was filled with shots of him smoking. He is a motorcycle stunt man, making reckless decision after decision. I can’t tell if I thought he seemed so cool because he smoked, or if his habit just enriched his character to seem recklessly dissident. Gosling’s role in Drive, who doesn’t smoke at all, was a super badass. So it wasn’t the smoking that made him cool. Why do all the greatest villains and heroes appear with a cig on their lips? Take a look at some of the some of the neatest smoking characters in film. The standard Marlboro Man in film has to be Clint Eastwood in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. He plays a kick-ass sharpshooter cowboy worthy of the name Smokeface Killah. He even lights a cannon fuse with a cigar, resulting in the cannonball rocketing a guy off his horse. For a smoky female role model, Audrey Hepburn plays a classy turtlenecked smoker in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. When she was on screen, smoking was more commonplace, but she and her cigarette holder added style and femininity to smoking. I separate these smoking characters by certain roles. Jim Stark in Rebel Without a Cause, Tyler Durden in Fight Club, Danny Zuko in Grease, William James in The Hurt Locker, and Luke in Pines are all tough guys. They are seen as loose cannons, capitol T for trouble. The cigarette makes them seem a little less approachable but cooler than the rest. These are the guys I suspect young impressionable moviegoers hope to one day become as they leave the theater, determined to pick up smoking and hopefully smoking hot ladygirls. Then there are the more human characters, seen as the hero with a nicotine addiction. I see John McClane (Die Hard), James Bond (almost every Bond movie ever), and Django (Django Unchained) as simple guys that enjoy their

cigarettes. Their addiction is shown as less of a character trait and more of a habit. Villains in countless movies and television shows emerge from a dark room, only visible by the glowing butt of their cigarette/cigar. The Cancer Man from the X-Files and Cruella de Vil from 101 Dalmatians to name a few. That lady is an ashy-kneed, stanky-legged gypsy. Video game characters are shown portrayed similarly. Seen in the Halo series, Metal Gear series, Duke Nukem, Bioshock, and Call of Duty the characters you control and the ones surrounding you smoke. In some games, you can pick up packs of cigarettes and smoke them to

gain power. I would say, both in movies and in video games, the percentage of smokers that are protagonists vs. antagonists are split fifty-fifty. I don’t think I need to talk about the chimney champs that were made famous for their image in the rock & roll music scene ages ago. Dylan and Richards are still kickin’ and probably smoking like a bunch of Smokey Robinsons. I believe that it is not that the smoking makes the film; it is simply a character enhancer, playing on our preconceived notions of what is cool, villainous, or whatever you think about smokers.

Union Weekly—29 April 2013

Swag Bag



Reviews of an unmarked CD grab-bag from Fingerprints Hand on the Torch - US 3

Rose Feduk Comics Editor If you’re someone that likes to buy grab bags, you either enjoy disappointment or live on the edge. Both of those things just happen to apply to me. So when I found myself in Fingerprints on 4th Street holding a wrapped package of ten CDs that I could possibly purchase for five dollars, I decided that I didn’t need to eat dinner that night and I bought that sucker. Some of them were surprising, some unsurprisingly bad and some were just plain forgettable. As the four CDs that were cut left no mystery to why Fingerprints was trying to get rid of them, here are the six CDs that were the best of the bunch. Also the grab bags come with stickers. Neato!

Every track of this jazz/hip hop fusion album is funky, fresh, and sounds like something that would have been produced in 1993 by someone painfully hip. It’s easy listening in the most complementary way. Bruce Lundvall, the president of their label, Blue Note, writes that Hand on the Torch is the brain child of some of the “gonest cats” and “baddest rappers on the hip hop tip.” And from what it sounds like, he’s probably correct.

Late Night Special - Pretty Ricky

Charlie’s Angels Soundtrack

I really have to apologize to the guys from Pretty Ricky because before I listened to this album, I thought that Pretty Ricky was just one untalented rapper guy with a grill. But as it turns out, Pretty Ricky is a group of guys who can really belt out some smooth R&B hits—and only two of them have grills. It’s not really my cup of tea, but the song “Personal Trainer” contains the lyric “Work that muscle, muscle/ That pussy muscle, muscle.” So there’s that.

If you were ever going to actually buy this CD, I’m guessing that you would get it for the first track, Destiny’s Child’s “Independent Women Part 1” and unless you want to listen to more forgotten hits from the ‘70s through the ‘90s (really forgotten, I mean, who is Caviar and what’s a “Tangerine Speedo” anyway?) that’s about as much mileage as you’re going to get out of this album. But if you really want to fucking push the tempo, you could probably listen to Fatboy Slim’s “Ya Mama” for an hour until your legs give out from twerking.

The Duchess - Fergie

When I created a Myspace in 2006, I chose “Fergalicious” as my profile song. I stand by that choice because the song still holds up seven years later. It has everything you could want in a song: Spanish counting, shouting, and a Fergie rap. Oh and there are some other songs on this album but who cares. Fergalicious forever! [Editor’s Note: Vincent begged me to let him write this review and then proceeded to steal this CD from my car without my knowledge.]

This Fire - Paula Cole

After the opening track of This Fire, I had some pretty disparaging things to say about Paula Cole. She sounded like some try-hard Alanis Morrisette/ Fiona Apple hack who had created an album as the result of having been accidentally locked in a recording studio for thirty days. But little did I know that the closing track to this album is none other than the Dawson’s Creek theme song, “I Don’t Want to Wait.” Needless to say, I immediately dropped to my knees and begged God for forgiveness.

Vivir - Enrique Iglesias Having an album all in Spanish really spiced things up for this grab bag—if you know what I mean (I’m sorry). This album comes a couple years before Iglesias let the rhythm take us over with “Bailamos,” but if you’re down for some inoffensive Latin pop and a booklet of emotive pictures featuring Enrique and his mole, you might want to consider picking this up for that lonely co-worker of yours with the gap-tooth.


LITERATURE Union Weekly—29 April 2013

Fair Game

Illustration by Rose Feduk Comics Editor

Some insight into authorship from the LA Festival of Books Interviews by Sierra Patheal & Katie Healy Assistant Editors

Children’s Picture Book Authors Leslie and Brian Miller, “Fobie Friends” (

Leslie Miller: My name is Leslie Miller, and my husband Brian and I write children’s books. Our company is called “Fobie Friends,” and the title of the book that people tend to like is, Did My Owl Just Growl?

Historical Fiction Author C.A. Hartnell (

C.A. Hartnell: I write as C.A. Hartnell— that’s actually my maiden name—and my series is about the 1950s. It takes place in the year of 1955 in California, and I like to say it’s a scary, sinister, ferocious, wild year. That captures a bit of each title. Union Weekly: So, the first book is about the polio virus. How did you decide to write about that? CAH: The vaccine first came out in April 1955, and so that was the nugget around which I tailored the story. My aunt and uncle were pathologists and actually worked on the polio vaccine with Dr. Salk’s brother [Editor’s Note: Dr. Salk created the polio vaccine], who worked in Los Angeles at the County Hospital, which I guess was part of the USC system. That’s where they trained their doctors and nurses and medical personnel. Living in El Monte, we came into

Union Weekly: And what other books do you have here today? LM: We have Hold Your Seahorses, Water is the Worst! and our third book here is, Climb the Monkey Bars? That’s Bananas! UW: How long have you been writing children’s literature? LM: We’ve been writing children’s books a couple of years, so we’re fairly new. Our first book was released about a year ago, and we have a theme to all our books. All of our books deal with a particular fear for a child, and then our “Fobie Friends,” taking from the childlike word

for “Phobia,” come in and help them to face their fear—while they’re in their imagination. It’s a very self-empowering way to deal with a fear. UW: How did you guys decide to write in that particular genre? LM: We actually have a friend, a couple of partners, who were involved with us as well. They had the idea for the name “Fobie Friends.” They approached us about it, and we started the business and started writing, and two years later, we’re going strong. It’s funny what it takes to come together, and sometimes it’s just a

little bit of luck. UW: Why did you decide to come to the fair as an exhibitor? LM: We live in Scottsdale, Arizona—we’re based there—and we were at a Tucson Book Festival, and someone approached us about coming to LA and doing the LA Times Book Festival. UW: So you’re only here for a little while? LM: Yeah! It’s like a little mini vacation, and we get to hang out… It’s fun to have my husband with me, and it’s beautiful out. I think it’s been a great success so far.

Los Angeles all the time, so I’ve always felt this connection to Los Angeles. It’s a special place. I mean, we would come in and pick up my grandmother at LAX when you just drove up to the fence— the short fence—and the plane came in and she came out and her bags must have been sitting right there, and she’d come to the gate and come out the gate. Just that simple. Or we’d go into farmer’s markets and bakeries and buy goodies and such. So I just have these wonderful fond memories of Los Angeles, and I tried to capture that throughout the books, especially book two. It talks a lot about Los Angeles. Each book teaches some lesson. The first book teaches a lesson about courage. Book three talks, not only about wild weather, but about these bullies who have just come into town and go to their school . How do the bullies remind them of wild weather, and how do you deal with these kids? Each book has some lesson to teach, but not in a preachy way. Yes, they’re about the 1950s, but there’s relevancy in the rest of the story. UW: There’s a timeless quality to them.

CAH: A timeless quality, I like that. UW: What was the path from writing the story to actually publishing it? CAH: I went to writing conferences, and right away, they tell you if you have to pay to have your stuff published, that that’s not a ‘real’ publisher. The big publishing houses will pay you in advance, and I knew that. But it’s such a narrow group of people. So, seven or eight years ago, I was taking a class and I had to write a book for the class. When I wrote the first book, it was actually called, “More Than a Pinch, Less Than a Bee Sting,” which is a really long title, but it was a rhyme that the main character would say about the polio vaccine. Carol and the other character didn’t want the shot, but he’d say, “Aw, it’s more than a pinch, less than a bee sting.” I ended up going with a vanity press for that book, and they were very nice people, but it cost a lot of money. I knew better, I knew that this was not a ‘real’ publisher that was going to give me an advance, but I fell into that thing where I wanted to see a book in print with my name on it so much that I didn’t go down

the avenue of trying to find a publisher. I thought many times, I could just send those query letters and get some publisher hopefully interested in the books. But I just said, “Okay, I’ll do this the right way.” And it’s been hard, and I had to make all these decisions, and I haven’t had a hundred people to go over the books and edit, but I hired an editor [and] a graphic designer… They’re out there in spades, because even the editors who work with the big publishing houses do side work. The graphic designer who worked with me on these four books actually works for a Christian house, InterVarsity Press. They do nonfiction education books. She was their graphic designer and artistic designer for twentysomething years, and she does side jobs. You have to wear a lot of different hats when you go down the independent publishing road, and you have to do quality work. You have to make yourself look as high quality as anybody else out there. That’s what I aim to do. I feel like I’m carrying this vanguard banner for all those independent publishers out there.

LITERATURE Union Weekly—29 April 2013

Vincent Scully, Grapeshot & Demons Union Weekly: What is your name, where are you from, and how many books have you written? Vincent Scully: Vincent Scully, Long Beach, first book. UW: Really, that’s surprising. Is it selfpublished or— VS: Yeah it’s self-published, and on Amazon. I did make it to the QuarterFinals on Amazon this year, and they really seemed to like the story. The reason they gave for why it didn’t make it further was mistakes in editing, and I have become aware how important editing is in publishing. I understand that writers will follow an editor to different publishing houses. I used a magazine editor, a friend of mine, and now I’m paying Amazon to do it. So we’ll see if that’s the secret. UW: Congratulations on that, that’s really impressive. VS: Yeah, thanks. I’ve been thinking about this story for 20 years, you know. I used to read all the old Horatio Hornblower novels, and the Master and

Commander Series, a few others. There’s a big niche for people who like British Naval fiction. The British Navy did some really amazing things, and I just got this idea, what would happen if you introduced them to aliens, and put them on another planet. Well, it turns out the good ol’ British keep fighting for King and Country, not to mention some heavy artillery, and they fair pretty well against those aliens. UW: I like it. I’m excited to read your book now. You said you’d been thinking about this story for about twenty years. VS: Yes. UW: What motivated you to fully go for it and see your idea realized? VS: Well I retired and also my brother wrote a novel, so I sort of figured how hard could it be? And my novel’s much better than his [laughs]. UW: I was going to ask [also laughs]. What made you decide to come to the Fair today with your booth? VS: You know, I have no idea how to get started. Here’s the book, it’s on Amazon, and everybody who reads it enjoys the book. So how do you get the word out? Well I’m giving away free books and this is the game [gestures to “Stab the Krag”].

Grapeshot & Demons

UW: We were thinking about conducting interviews with authors and we were like, “We have to go back to the crab guy. He was awesome.” VS: Now, I did get an email from a guy at Long Beach, I forget his name. I know him from a friend of my daughter’s, I know him through some mutual friends, the DeCollibus’, and he was gonna interview me. But you seem to have beaten him to the punch. UW: Well I’m sure he’ll understand. You snooze, you lose after all. What age group would you say your book is for? VS: Well it’s a mature book, it’s clearly an R rated movie, at least, and I’d say its mature reading. That said, most of the readers have been people in their fifties and sixties, my friends. That’s the first group of people any author goes to. Then some of their kids have been reading it as well. My own son said he really liked it. It should appeal to younger groups, I think, because it’s very Epic ActionAdventure, there’s a lot of gratuitous sex in it, and there’s a lot of humor in it as well. UW: Sounds like a good mix. VS: There’s a lot of humor in it, there’s some scatological humor in it, it’s


all these different contrasts coming together. Here’s the stayed and stalwart British Navy, dealing with all these crazy things, like a giant alien taking a dump on one of the officers’ head! Anything can happen. And they, uh, they get into some pretty wild stuff. UW: How different is this version from the very first draft you penned? VS: Oh it’s completely different. I used a kind of trial and error system when I wrote this story. You know, I don’t consider myself a good writer, but I do consider myself a good reader. I know what good literature looks like. So I would write, two hours a day until it was finished, I’d leave it for two weeks and read it and it would stink. And I’d rewrite it, leave it for two weeks, come back and read it and it still stunk. And every time I rewrote I would change more things. Sometimes just a couple characters, sometimes entire chapters would be rewritten or cut entirely. UW: Was that ever difficult? Cutting whole sections of your work, I mean. VS: Not really. When you know something is garbage you know it’s better gone [laughs].

A review of the strangest British Naval Fiction since Hor-facial-o Cornblower

Wes Verner Literature Editor “Master and Commander meets Star Wars meets Debbie does the Royal Navy” is proclaimed proudly to all who read the cover of Grapeshot and Demons, and after my glimpse into the creative mind of Vincent Scully I can say that not only is this statement accurate, it may even fall short of the real thing. If I was asked to describe this book in one sentence, my sentence would be “This book cannot be adequately described in one sentence.” Though the dialogue gets a little difficult to read at times (as it is written to include any accents the characters might possess), you can usually depend on Scully to give some context after

anything important in the form of the main character’s internal dialogue and thoughts. Since the story deals with the British Royal Navy, most of these accents were very low class cockney accents used by the seamen (not to be confused with semen, which is another aspect of the story entirely) so they would be filled with apostrophes and ‘allo mates and wot’s it tew yeh ‘ow I spell, you fick bastuhd, but it’s worth it to go back and reread once you understand all the words. It seems clichéd, but reading it out loud makes the book exceedingly entertaining. If you’re expecting anything serious you are in the very wrong place. I have

never been tempted to write the phrase ‘rollicking good ride’, but, God help me, this book deserves it. This book is satisfying like watching a great ActionAdventure movie. This book is The A-Team of novels. But it’s more than that, because The A-Team doesn’t have sex in it. It’s more like the The O-Team. While sailing back for England in 1815, a British Naval squadron is met by a strange portal that transports them to an alien planet ruled by a vicious race of lifeforce stealing creatures called the Draesh. Aided by a group who go by the name ‘fireflies’ and a host of other strange beings (including a race of sentient mud piles that

communicate by expelling gas in loud, farty sounds), the sailors of His Majesty’s Navy attempt to end the Draesh menace for good. Plus, there’s gratuitous sex. The question to ask yourself is this: How would you feel about reading Monty Python with some pretty sweet sex scenes? That’s about what you’ll get with Grapeshot and Demons. The humor runs the gamut, ranging from puns to gutter humor to some classy highbrow knockknock jokes. I might be lying about the knock-knock jokes. Look, the point is go read this book. I can assure you it will be very…memorable.





SSPA 030, Long Beach, CA 90840-4601


35 2


And since they don’t have to worry about publishing any ads or figuring out how to get out of a computer, they can dedicate all their mind powers to creating a monthly product that manages to hit the monumental levels of “okay” and “meh.” Not that it is a bad thing.

Phone: (562)-985-7984



Dic is the best, most interesting magazine at CSULB with pages with pictures that range from color to black and white. OH they know how to use that color. Every page is color. It’s beautiful. It looks so expensive too.


SWAG P. 15 DOPE P. 15

The foto above is of my dog, Chon-Chon, as he inputs the codes for me to escape from my emulator prison. Ay. You are my angel, Chon-Chon. I love you. BUT THEN, as I was checking my website,, I was shaken by some terrible news: I bought the wrong publication. Here I was thinking this turd I am attached to was something more than just a turd, like a turd with cuss words, but it’s still just a turd! Perdóname madre per ser una estupida. Why could I not see this before?

Do you know how much money is needed to print a magazine in full color and where the pictures go all the way to the edges? I sure don’t. If I did, I’d be out of this peehole like “this.” You could not see what I just did, but I snapped my fingers in a most swaggy manner. This issue is dedicated to the hardworkers at Dic mag.

SSPA 030, Long Beach, CA 90840-4601 Phone: (562)-985-7984 © Dic & 69er Publications Board 2013 Dic Magazine is a publication of Dic & 69er Publication Board. It’s fake. Fuck you fro thinking it’s a real thing. Dummy.







14 C




t starts with one thing I don’t know why. It doesn’t even matter how hard you try. Keep that in mind. I designed this rhyme to explain in due time. All I know time is a valuable thing.


me. I’m surprised it got so things aren’t the me back then, but it all comes back to me

to fall to lose it all, but in the end it doesn’t

can go. For all this there’s only one thing you



to fall to lose it all, but in the end it doesn’t

as far as I can go. For all this, there’s only matter. I had to fall. To lose it all, but in the

Keep that in mind I designed this rhyme

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