Archive for October, 2008

On details

Neck detailing

Neck detailing





"I've thrown all rules aside and allowed my style to evolve from itself" "I'm apalled by knit tunics and rubber flip flops."

“I’m appalled by knit tunics and rubber flip flops.” -Koopmans

By Liz Mundle

Money makes the world go round

$603 million. The total amount raised by Barack Obama’s campaign.

$358 million. The total amount raised by John McCain’s campaign.

Together it equals $961 million. That’s almost $1 billion. And that’s not including the money raised by other candidates who were seeking a presidential nomination or the candidates of smaller parties.

This number is not something to be proud of, in fact it borders on embarrassing.

We are living in one of the greatest economic crises of the last century, and yet Obama raised a presidential campaign record $150 million in September alone.

That does not reflect a nation in the middle of an economic crisis.

Fifteen years ago, in 1993, Fortune Magazine published an article about what you could buy with $1 billion. Here’s just a sample:

— The average annual grocery bill for 250,000 families of four.
— A lifetime supply, 30 months on average, of disposable diapers for 666,000 children.
— Two years’ worth of AIDS research at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, or a year’s worth of the drug AZT for 333,000 HIV-infected people.
— The tuition, room, and board at an Ivy League school for 10,645 students, enough to populate the freshman classes of Brown, Cornell, Harvard, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton, and Yale — with $50 million left for Cliffs Notes.

Think about what we have done in the last year. Most of us are probably guilty – I am. I contributed $40 to a campaign to attend a rally. Some of us have bought t-shirts from campaigns, while others have donated money directly.

We are pouring our resources – time, energy and money – into candidates who have made one promise after another. We have eaten their words like hungry lions, desperate for some hope.

But what if, instead of dumping money into a system of deception, we put money into programs that have a history of change; the UN world food program or maybe you feel inclined to support an international child.

We stand on streets with clipboards asking every person who passes if they are registered to vote. We go to rallies and attend conventions, because this man has become a hero who we have to see in person.

We can’t do anything about the last year, but we can change the direction of the next four years. What if we took our ‘election year’ energy and used it to build houses with Habitat for Humanity? What if we handed out bagged lunches to the homeless once a month?

Imagine what American could look like.

By Nora Jorgensen

Late Night with Roy was scheduled to start at 7 p.m., but the overwhelming lines outside the Dean Dome at 4 p.m. Friday, October 24, 2008, proved once again that UNC is in love with basketball.

The lights went out and “Late Night with Roy” necklaces around thousands of necks gleamed. Camera lights started flashing and everyone knew it was the beginning of an amazing season. The fans greeted Tyler Hansbrough and Co. with an ear-ringing enthusiasm, and the boys did not disappoint.

However, basketball isn’t the only sport that has been enticing to watch. On Saturday, thousands supported the Carolina Football team, despite the rain. And here too, we were not let down. After struggling to be ranked after a tragic loss to UVA last week, the Tar Heels pulled through again, ripping apart BC, securing a Carolina victory and a ranking as 21.

So is UNC really “a basketball school,” as it is so often called? This year’s football season has defiantly made this debatable.

Unfortunately, here is where I have to admit that I have never (until recently) known rules to either football or basketball. In high school, I viewed the games as social engagements; the most I took home with me was the final score (usually because my parents would ask me how the game was, and I could say, “We won!” or “We lost.”) But I am proud to say that I am no longer ignorant to the rules of football, and I never knew how exciting a football game could really be.

Now that I am in football season fever, I am sad to see it is soon to be taken over by basketball. Maybe I just don’t want to learn the rules of another game, but I can’t imagine that basketball can be as exciting.

Can the five steps it takes the players to get across the court really be that difficult? Is the claustrophobic space in the Dean Dome really as enjoyable as Kenan Stadium?

To you, this might seem incredibly ignorant, because no one who has yet to experience the thrill of Carolina Basketball can really have an opinion. And I can imagine that after the basketball season I will be utterly infatuated by the sport, but as for now, I have to say that I have enjoyed the tailgating football season. And whoever says that UNC is a basketball school, has yet to watch the Tar Heels play some football.

By Vicky Waldthausen

“The book was better” is inevitably my response to any film based on literature. There is an innate snobbery that comes with the terrain of being an English major, and I duly uphold that obligation when it comes to reviewing a pop culture butchering of a great novel.

That said, I enjoyed watching The Secret Life of Bees. Visually appealing, heartwarming, and carried off by an extremely talented cast, the movie does capture the spirit of Sue Monk Kidd’s writing. Set in a dreamy interpretation of 1964 South Carolina, the film is permeated with Southern drawl, sunny colors and the stock “coming of age” theme.

Dakota Fanning plays 14-year-old Lily, a confused and neglected white girl who runs away with her black housekeeper, Rosaleen, played by Jennifer Hudson. Rosaleen is in trouble with the law for standing up to the town racists and Lily is searching for a connection to her dead mother. They find the Boatwright sisters, played by Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys, and Sophie Okonedo, who live in an outrageously pink house and harvest honey for profit. The black sisters seem to embody a womanly power, in their separate ways, which allow both runaways to grow in the nurturing environment of their fairyland estate.

The plot is more complicated but I hesitate to expound upon it because the book and the film are muddled in my memory. The novel was more believable, touching and profound, due to its ability to explore themes implicitly rather than with direct action. In particular I feel that the character of May Boatwright, the slightly odd sister who is compassionate to the point of volatile emotional outbursts, is illuminated better in writing. In the film she merely comes across as off her rocker.

None of us have a lot of time on our hands. I know that two hours spent at the Southpoint Theater is much more manageable than double the time of hunkering down with a good book. If you need a sweet, hopeful, and extremely girly movie, The Secret Life of Bees will move you to the sought after cathartic tears. However, I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, the book was better.

By Madeleine Clark

Circa 1958 Opening

These are from the opening of the Circa 1958 exhibit at the Ackland Art Museum. There was a 1950’s costume contest on the night of the party, and one of these people were dressed up (I won’t say which!), the other two just arrived as they were. What goes around comes around.

[click on each image to enlarge it]

By Liz Mundle

Pit Stop

Click for a live image of The Pit.

Girl: I voted today!
Boy: Voted for what?

(It is kind of dark outside, and a guy is skateboarding in the Pit.)
Boy: I’m OK. Everything is OK.
(He limps away…)

Girl 1: With all of this Presidential stuff, I, like, haven’t heard a  thing about International events. You know, like Darfur.
Girl 2: What’s a darfur?
Girl 1: And apparently you haven’t either.

By Vicky Waldthausen

You may (or may not have) noticed the new “Cuff Links on the Quad” photo column in Blue and White. The purpose of the column is simple – to seek out those diligent individuals who put a little thought into what they’re wearing each day when it is so very easy to don a uniform of Carolina sweatpants and a hoodie on a daily basis.

The idea isn’t to find the quirkiest trend or the loudest personal fashion, because being ostentatious doesn’t necessarily equate to, you know, “looking good.” After all, as YSL put it, “Fashion fades, style is eternal.”  Style is in the details, it requires paying attention and being thoughtful, and I’ve found that perfect buttons, excellent proportions, and great color pairings can be hard (read: impossible) to relate in a 2×3 black and white photo.

Thus the blog component of the column. While the inspiration from Scott Schuman’s Sartorialist blog (if you don’t follow it, I suggest you begin immediately) should be obvious, the online portion will hopefully also serve as a medium to see more of your peers, in larger pictures and in color. Pictures will hopefully ultimately be posted several times a week, but as things gear up it may not be that often. But check, check often, and dress your best, I’ll probably awkwardly accost you in a crowded place. And I promise, amidst the sea of Carolina blue and Rainbows (not that there’s anything wrong with it) there are valiant souls who look pretty damn good.

By Liz Mundle

In American society, the 21st birthday is a big deal. Wait, let me scratch that. It is an overwhelmingly huge event where the individual celebrates his or her legal ability to purchase, consume, and enjoy the effects of alcohol. Milestones like this only come around a few times, and I would have to say that 21 is the last biggie for a while.

The revelry usually begins at midnight as an optimal mix of friends and free drinks from supportive acquaintances along the bar crawl. Inevitably, the night ends with the Birthday Girl or Boy dry heaving into a porcelain abyss with one friend on back-rubbing duty and another friend attempting to pump water down the victim’s throat. Hydration is key. Everyone present agrees the night was a success and hopes that no one was planning to go to an 8 a.m. class.

Vomiting is, generally speaking, not my idea of a good time. A massive hangover and total inability to recall the past night’s events are also not the best way to fully enjoy your birthday. So why do we force our bodies to go to the extreme, past the point of responsible ingestion to a whole new level of shwasty? The hardcore celebration of a 21st birthday is the young adult way of sticking it to The Man.

As a 20-year-old, an American can drive a car, serve in the military, vote, marry, sign legal documents and essentially function as an adult in all major areas of life. The only catch is that you are not mature enough to order a glass of wine with dinner. Your college budget probably mandates that you order water regardless of legality, but it is the principle of the situation at hand.

How dare the government make us wait for something so trivial when we are burdened with all of the other responsibilities that come with growing up?

So, college students and other under 21-year-olds flout the system. In fact, a 2007 call to action by the Surgeon General referenced the fact that 28.2 percent of 12 to 20 year olds participate in some form of drinking.

Maybe in high school it is not as prevalent, but here at college, rebellion abounds. Girls rush to the Player’s bathroom to scrub the X’s off their hands, kids pass back fake IDs to get into bars, and older friends contribute cases to off-campus beer pong tournaments. The whole system is defied yet the resentment remains.

It would be incredibly naïve to assume that the majority of our generation is taking their first sip of alcohol on their 21st birthday. In fact, the kid you are buying a shot for to celebrate “the big day” was probably at La Rez last week too, using his buddy’s license.

If you know how to get tipsy, buzzed, comfortably drunk or wasted from experience, why not pick your level for the evening? You have been fighting The Man for at least three years now. Tonight is your night and I promise he won’t be there.

By Madeleine Clark

We are more than donkeys and elephants

Political satire is funny, especially when it’s done really well. Amy Poehler on SNL this weekend was really, really funny. In fact, Sarah Palin was even a little funny too. And even Barack Obama and John McCain have joined in on the jokes; poking fun at each other at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation dinner.

But as the weeks pass and the election draws closer, humor will only get us so far. Humor is indeed a great way to escape current political tensions. It also creates a relaxed setting to criticize things we severely disagree with, and it’s a good way to challenge people to really think.

But in a little more than two weeks, whether it’s President Obama or President McCain, people are going to be unhappy. Mean things will be said about one of these men and the next four years he is going to live under the strictest scrutiny.

Former Tar Heel, retired professional basketball player, and current announcer for UNC, Eric Montross spoke to my class today. He said his goal as a member of the sports media is to embrace the positive. Can we finish this political season with the same spin?

As Americans, with extreme but equally valid opinions, we need to be willing to step away from negativity, and sometimes maybe even the humor. Instead, we need to enjoy the great things we share as citizens of the same nation, even if it is something as simple as a Coke.

The new Coca-cola commercial is a perfect example of the awesome relationships that can exist, as well as the awesome experiences that can be had, when we are willing to set aside our political differences.

By Nora Jorgensen

It’s natural for most human beings to seek some kind of order – something that can organize their lives. Some people make lists and dutifully check off one completed task after another; others follow strong religious beliefs, hoping their faithfulness will one day lead them to salvation; and yet others follow the dreaded rules that are placed upon them as restrictions. Finally, there are some people who faithfully read Cosmopolitan magazine and follow the never-ending stream of Dating Rules to successfully manage their relationship.

A Rulebook for Intimacy. A concrete list of Dos and Don’ts that tells us when we need to take a chance or when it is time to walk away; what to do when our relationship is in a rut, or if it is up to us to make the next move.

But would this rulebook take away the surprises of a relationship – those quick, unexpected “I think you are special” kisses, the tender nudges, the very rare “you deserve a break so I cooked for you” dinners? A book filled with the Dos and Don’ts of dating couldn’t possibly solve the dilemmas of the many couples that are barely making it work, could it? No, I think that if couples survive a crisis, it is because they slowly discover their own book.

But the trusty Rulebook never disappears. Every now and then, everyone is guilty of looking up one dating tip or another. And college is a time when relationship rules really come in handy. Who doesn’t need advice about the future?

However, one more problem has to be taken into consideration: the rules of girls versus the rules of guys. Both groups come into college with expectations. The more traditional societal expectations influence a girl’s wish to find a college sweetheart, while guys are urged to find a job so they can provide for their families later in life. Although women are no longer expected to start a family right after college, they often fret about not being able to find a partner when they are no longer protected by a college setting (or in their twenties).

Both men and women struggle with choosing to follow The Rulebook for Intimacy, or to leave it on the shelf and attempt to figure things out one step at a time.

If the romance in a relationship is really right, shouldn’t the future more or less fall into place? Unfortunately, there is no answer, and I cannot even give you a hint. But I do know that intimacies formed in relationship are special and hard to find, so whether you find it in college or elsewhere, take everything one step at a time.

Read Cosmopolitan and chuckle, but don’t let the rules influence you. Everyone’s rules to intimacy are different; they come from your emotions and from being in the moment, not from someone else’s experiences.

By Vicky Waldthausen