Features

Long-form investigative articles covering people, events and issues that affect the student body. If you have an idea for us to cover, contact us at [email protected]

Unveiling the Feminine Mystique

The true concept of feminism is a foreign one to most people. For some, feminism is equated with hoards of bra burners hell-bent on fighting all that is phallic and male in our society. Others may have images of privileged white women going off on a first-wave feminist rant, failing to include the majority of the population of women who don’t consider the ability to work a luxury. It is this baseless cry of the ignorant that the members of the undergraduate academic group Women Inciting Social Change wish to dispel with their April 11 conference titled “”Exploring ‘Feminine’ Bodies.”” It is also one of the first conferences at UCSD to be organized exclusively by undergraduate students. Conception For many in the critical gender studies department, the extensive focus on theory can be frustrating, because it doesn’t necessarily lead to action or to solutions. WISC members felt that by organizing the conference, they would be creating a practical application of their knowledge. WISC is composed of four UCSD undergraduate women and two alumni CGS majors. The conference idea was originally conceptualized by Cindy Wu, a recent graduate of UCSD who attended a conference and wanted to bring the information that she had learned to UCSD. “”I wanted to accomplish two things with this conference,”” Wu said. “”First, I wanted to learn how to organize a conference, and second, I wanted to really explore the ideas and concepts that we have learned in this major and share them with UCSD students who may not have access to feminist theory classes.”” She organized her information and took it to professor Rosemary George, head of the CGS department, who felt that Wu’s idea was sound. Together with Nancy Hatch, the department coordinator, they organized a 198-person class that took place last fall quarter that was designed to facilitate the organization of the conference. In this way, students had a disciplined way to organize the structure of the conference and issues they wanted to discuss, and were able to receive academic credit for their endeavors. The group WISC, was developed in the class as a way to get financial support from the university. It was developed around the idea of the conference, but has turned into something more. According to its constitution, WISC is a student-run organization composed of UCSD students with a common mission to promote critical thinking and activism on issues of gender, race, class and sexuality. However, the members have found that they have learned more than just how to organize a conference. Together, by personally engaging the theories presented to them in class, they have learned a lot more in their classes. Additionally, the support that they provide to each other in study sessions for classes has made this year truly educational. According to Patricia Cordozo, who was the co-director of finance and fundraising for this event, George’s vision of the potential of the group was a key element to their success. “”We would have been lost without professor George,”” Cordozo said. “”She really gave us 100 percent support the whole time. Before this, we were complete novices. Her confidence in us is really what allowed us to pull this whole thing off.”” According to the university, the CGS department has fewer than 30 students in the major, but according to Landy Spencer, co-director of programming, the small size of the department is part of its appeal. In this case, it allowed for increased support from the faculty, which was instrumental for WISC members’ success. “”We were really excited about the support we received from the faculty,”” Spencer said. “”Those who are participating are really going out of their way, despite personal inconvenience. Their support has really made this a positive learning experience that I hope to translate into my future activities.”” Goals According to Heidi Saman, co-director of programming, several departments offer courses that encourage a deeper evaluation of established labels, however not all students have access to these classes. WISC members felt that women and men’s bodies are the site of most subjective identities, and that here would be the best place to start exploring social constructions of race, gender and sexuality. Here, the concept of “”Exploring ‘Feminine’ Bodies”” was designed. “”We see a void in students awareness of critical issues regarding gender, racial and sexual categories,”” Saman said. “”Some fail to prioritize these classes in their rigorous academic schedules, and therefore never take the opportunity to sample the incredible resources that UCSD offers in the academic study of these issues.”” Departments such as critical gender studies are interdisciplinary by design. This allows students to sample classes from a variety of different departments and to explore the important issue of gender from a variety of different perspectives. “”By taking gendered perspectives into account in a variety of different disciplines, we discover exactly how pervasive perceptions of gender are in influencing social behavior,”” Cardozo said. “”We wanted to create a conference that allowed students to explore the discipline of gender studies and develop a greater understanding of how the issues in the major affect everyone. This increased understanding and awareness will allow for greater sensitivity of UCSD students who are entering the world as prospective participants in institutionalized and socialized behavior.”” The founders of WISC envision a conference where the intersection of race, class and sexuality are explored through and against ideologies of gender. According to Wu, their hope for this conference is to enlighten participants to new conceptualizations of feminine bodies. They also hope that the diversity of the speakers will allow people to explore the issues on their own, and will also challenge the ideology that certain groups are not touched by race or gender, and encourage a deeper understanding of supposedly invisible categories. “”This conference would allow students easy access to information that they may not otherwise come into contact with,”” Spencer said. “”By giving students access to the incredible professors that UCSD has working in this department, we promote a greater understanding of social issues colored by a gendered lens, and the importance and significance of this area of study. The Speakers According to Saman, the group invited the professors whom they felt best embodied the ideas that the group wanted to share. She feels that the group has been very fortunate that the UCSD professors whom they asked to participate have all been enthusiastic supporters of the students. “”We were really lucky that the UCSD professors who we asked to participate were able to take time out of their busy schedules to participate,”” Saman said. “”I’ve been working with them for the last few months and everyone is so wonderful. The talks are going to be really exciting.”” The keynote speaker, professor Judith Halberstam of the literature department, is a universal favorite among critical gender studies majors and members of the literature department. Her talk will highlight new lesbian subcultures, including dyke punk bands, slam poets and drag kings. Her talk, entitled “”Female Masculinity: The Body in Question”” will include music and video clips and will focus on four basic ideas including the significance of the categories queer and female on this subgroup. The structure of the conference has Halberstam speaking first, followed by two concurrent sessions that will be in the San Francisco/Santa Cruz Room and the Santa Barbara/Los Angeles Room. One of the concurrent sessions will feature professor George Lipsitz, a prominent faculty member in the ethnic studies department of UCSD, and professor Kathleen Jones, a faculty member at SDSU. The topic of this session will be “”Working Bodies and the Economics of Gender.”” Lipsitz’s presentation will focus on the organizations of work and its influences on all aspects of our existence, including the sexual and gender identities that we inhabit and envision. Jones will concentrate on mapping women’s social locations in formal and informal economies. She will also explore contexts for understanding the political economy of gender and the impact of this political economy on the individual and collective strategies of survival and resistance. The other concurrent session will focus on racialized bodies and will feature professors Daphne Brooks and Lisa Yoneyama, who are members of the literature department. Brooks will focus on a paper titled “”‘It Needs A Bottom’: (Re) Covering the Black Female Body in the Works of Suzan-Lori Parks.”” She will engage the various topics brought up in the paper about the politics of black feminist representations. WISC members anticipate that Yoneyama will focus on issues surrounding Asian-American race and sexuality. A Fine Evening For anyone who has ever been remotely interested in finding out more about gender studies, this evening promises to be both entertaining and informative. The several speakers who have been secured for the conference bring a refreshing blend of knowledge and experience that are sure to bring provocative thoughts to the table throughout the evening. “”Exploring ‘Feminine’ Bodies”” on Wednesday, April 11 will be open to the general public and will be free of charge. Registration, which is not mandatory, will begin at 4:45 p.m. in Price Center Ballroom B. Introduction to the conference will be done by professor Rosemary George at 5:15 p.m. Halberstam’s talk will run from 5:30 p.m. until 6:45 p.m. in Ballroom B. The two concurrent sessions will run from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. Professors Kathleen Jones and George Lipsitz will speak in the San Francisco/Santa Cruz Room, and professors Lisa Yoneyama and Daphne Brooks will speak in the Santa Barbara/Los Angeles Room. ...

Horoscopes

Aries (March 21-April 19) Romantic passions will now steadily increase, Aries. Early Tuesday, expect lovers and close family members to openly reveal their feelings. For the next three weeks, a desire to further enter into intimate relationships will be difficult to resist. Late Friday, watch for unexpected financial or workplace information. Carefully clarify all new instructions. Taurus (April 20-May 20) Fast career inroads and new social contacts will bring valuable opportunities in the coming weeks, Taurus. After Wednesday, expect key officials to search out your expertise or offer unique partnership proposals. Thursday through Sunday, loved ones will present new romantic ideas or rare flirtations. Private romantic encounters are now rewarding, Taurus: Stay open to cosy, seductive invitations. Gemini (May 21-June 21) Someone close may now offer unclear communications. For many Geminis, especially those born late in May, emotional confusion will mostly be experienced in family relationships. After Wednesday, however, close friends or new lovers will also avoid difficult subjects and firm promises. Revitalized passion will slowly return after mid-April. A demanding week, Gem: Stay sharp. Cancer (June 22-July 22) Key officials may be scattered or emotionally distant this week, Cancer. Before Thursday, expect important policy issues to distract colleagues and authority figures. Don’t push for quick decisions. Late Friday, watch also for co-workers, lovers or close friends to make obvious public mistakes or rely on incomplete information. Stay balanced, Cancer: Facts, dates and figures are temporarily unreliable. Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) Short-term agreements and temporary work assignments will be finalized this week. Some Leos, especially those born between 1976 and 1983, will now experience increasingly demanding daily schedules. After Thursday, a rare invitation from a previously distant friend may arrive. Past social promises are now accented: Expect long withheld passions to soon resurface. A complex week, Leo: Stay alert. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) Past family obligations or ongoing social stress between loved ones will fade early this week, Virgo. After Tuesday, yesterday’s power struggles will no longer play a key role in close relationships. Expect emotions to slowly but permanently shift, Virgo: Loved ones will soon begin a new phase of positive thinking and fresh social optimism. Wednesday through Saturday, listen to friends for subtle messages: Relocation, travel plans or unique job changes may be on the agenda. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) Long trusted lovers or close relatives will now demand obvious and steady commitments, Libra. Even though your attention has been squarely focused on relationships, others may still wish for emotional or romantic promises to proceed more rapidly. Much of this looks happy and enjoyable, Libra: so not to worry. Do, however, avoid dismissing your own needs and goals. At present, many Librans may too easily give away valuable time, energy and emotional resources. Scorpio (Oct. 24-Nov. 21) Family duties and emotional home discussions are accented early this week, Scorp. Over the next few days, watch for a close relative or long-term friend to ask for added emotional support. Stand your ground, Scorp: This is not a good time to let others dictate your schedule, daily habits or commitments. After Friday, romantic passions are compelling: Expect a previously subtle attraction to soon demand action. Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) Early this week, Sage, past financial or educational records may become briefly problematic. For many Sagittarians, outstanding paperwork from the past will need to be finalized before progress is available. Don’t hesitate to actively probe for answers: Hidden information or newly reveal facts are also accented. Late Saturday, a social gathering may provide disappointment: Watch for unexpected cancellations. Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) Rest, relaxation and inner contemplation will be rewarding this week, Cap. Before Thursday, delayed work duties will allow extra time for subtle romantic decisions and social breakthroughs. Some Capricorns may experience this period of calm reflection as a precursor to intense romantic development. After Friday, check financial records for obvious mistakes: Changed deadlines may soon be bothersome. Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) Before midweek, Aquarius, a close friend or work mate may reveal unexpected romantic information. New attractions or private office passions may soon trigger fast emotional changes in your social circle. After Friday, group involvement, increased social gossip or suddenly passionate proposals are accented. Go slow, Aquarius: Serious intentions are involved. Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) Business and social events may now lead to positive workplace gains, Pisces. Over the next few weeks, watch closely for unusual opportunities in the areas of property management, financial counseling, corporate advancement or accounting. After Thursday, a rare romantic flirtation may be both unexpected and delightfully seductive, Pisces: Enjoy! If Your Birthday is this Week: Group relationships and social demands will be complex over the next nine weeks. Many Aries natives will now experience a brief but intense period of conflicted social information and personality struggles in business relationships. Aries: Planetary alignments suggest that your words, actions and suggestions will do little to improve the opinions of the bold, willful types. By mid-June, a 14-month period of home progress, family decisions and new romantic commitments arrives. ...

The Evolution of Alcohol

The Romans had Dionysus, the god of wine. College students have John, the porcelain god. Both are mythical figures that people have prayed to while intoxicated. Alice Lin Guardian By most accounts, alcohol consumption has been around since nearly the beginning of the human race. While it may have begun with some primitive people eating rotten fruit and getting a slight high, it has evolved into a raging social phenomenon that has many people spending their lives in an alcoholic haze. While alcohol has become widely popular, its origins and distinguished history have remained widely unknown to many of those who partake in its many wonders. What is Alcohol? Alcohol is a depressant drug that affects the brain and causes reduced social inhibitions and relaxes the body, according to an Area 51 alcohol information Web site located at http://area51.upsu.plym.ac.uk/ ~harl/graphical/grphalc.html Alcohol is produced when sugars come into contact with airborne yeast and ferment. This process most commonly occurs in fruits, vegetables and grain; however, alcohol can be produced from just about any fermentable material, including flowers, honey, the sap of trees, milk and almost any plant or animal substance that contains carbohydrates or sugar, according to an article called “”The History of Alcohol, Part I”” at http://get.theinfo.org/alcohol1 While there are several different types of alcohol, the types most commonly used in alcoholic drinks are ethynol and ethyl alcohol. History Alcohol consumption is thought to date back to prehistoric man. Some modern-day animals have been observed to consume fermented fruits and enjoy the slight high that it brings, so it is thought that early man also experimented with the intoxicating effects of fermented fruits. One of the earliest mentions of wine making comes from an Egyptian papyrus that dates back to 3500 B.C., according to the British alcohol information site mentioned above. Paintings on ancient walls revealed that the Egyptians were also accomplished beer makers as well, according to “”A History of Beer and Alcohol,”” located at http://wy.essortment.com/beeralcoholhis_rueh.htm These wall paintings showed models of breweries and descriptions of the types of beer that were made. According to the Web site, the Egyptians made three different types of beer. Red beer was the most common, made by mixing undercooked loaves of barley or wheat bread with water and crushed wheat and allowing it to ferment in the sun. The liquid was then drained and stored. This beer is still made in Sudan and parts of Egypt. Sweet beer and black beer were also made by the Egyptians. Once people discovered that alcohol could be produced by fermenting sugar, it was being “”manufactured”” around the world. In tropical areas, it was common to use the sap of palm trees and cactus. In the far East and Europe, honey and milk were used to produce alcohol. In the early days of the United States, it was common to use corn, barley, wheat, sugar cane, potatoes and other plants to make alcohol, according to “”The History of Alcohol, Part I.”” According to the article, alcohol soon became a large part of many tribal and religious ceremonies. Two Dutch colonists were the first to establish a private brewery in America in 1612, according to “”A History of Beer and Alcohol.”” The brewery was located on the tip of Manhattan Island, where the first Dutch-American child was born, a site thought to be good luck by many of the settlers. According to the same Web site, the first public brewery was opened in the United States in 1622 in New Amsterdam. Beer making was a struggle for early settlers due to a lack of grains and hops, necessary to make the beer. Even today, there are only three states that grow hops: Idaho, Washington and Oregon. Its Affects The main attraction of alcoholic drinks is their ability to produce a state of intoxication. According to the Area 51 Web site, alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream anywhere from five to 10 minutes from its ingestion. It then travels through the blood stream and delivers the alcohol throughout the body. The result is a relaxation of the muscles, which can lead to poor coordination. Increased amounts of alcohol in the system can lead to slurred speech, double vision, loss of balance and nausea. If enough alcohol is ingested, the results can be deadly. Since alcohol is a toxic agent, the body will respond to it by trying to get rid of it. Initially, the body will attempt to do so through urination. If there is still an excess amount of alcohol in the system, the body may induce vomiting in an attempt to expel the toxin. If there is still a lot of alcohol in the system, the body will shut down and the person will lose consciousness. If not treated properly, this can lead to death. This is called alcohol poisoning. The Laws Throughout American history, alcohol has been the target of the law. While some may think that life before Prohibition was one big alcoholic haze, even the early colonists had strict laws against alcohol consumption. In 1633, Plymouth Plantation prohibited the sale of spirits “”more than two pence worth to anyone except strangers just arrived,”” according to a paper prepared by Jane Lang McGrew, an attorney from Washington, D.C. In 1637, Massachusetts ordered that no person should remain in a tavern “”longer than necessary occasions.”” While such laws were common in the colonies, there was no attempt to prohibit the sale of alcohol prior to the 18th century. Even then, there was no widespread prohibition, at least not until the 20th century. In 1920, the United States ratified the 18th amendment to the Constitution of the United States. This amendment prohibited the sale of alcohol in the United States. As it turns out, the amendment did not eradicate the use of alcohol in the United States. In fact, it opened the door for mobsters and criminals to brew their own alcohol and become rich off its illegal sales. With the realization that the amendment was doing more harm than good, the amendment was repealed on Dec. 5, 1933, legalizing the sale of alcohol in the United States once again. The current law in the United States is that nobody under the age of 21 is allowed to purchase alcohol. Additionally, there are laws against drinking and driving. While the blood alcohol content necessary for conviction on this offense vary from state to state, California’s legal limit is 0.08. ...

Approaching graduation causes long hours of contemplation on years past

One more quarter. That’s what I keep telling myself as I huddle in the corner of my room in a fetal position. OK, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit, but this is true enough: The pressure is building, and boy, can I feel it weighing me down. For me, and hundreds of others who will be graduating in June, this is a culmination of four years’ worth (some longer) of blood, sweat and tears. I am starting to feel the expectations of family, friends and even myself. My parents expect me to find a good job after graduating. Friends from back home, most of whom are still in city colleges or attending state colleges, expect the same: that I succeed, that I make loads of cash. Needless to say, I expect the same of myself, or at least the “”finding a good job”” part. This is, after all, the ultimate reason we are forking out $15,000 a year to attend UCSD. Graduating. I never thought I would be saying — well, typing — that word in this regard. Not to sound macho or anything, but there are few things that freak me out; truthfully, this is one of the few things that does. I’m placed in a situation that I’m sure most graduating seniors are in: limbo. We’re caught between the memories of the past and the possibilities of the future at the same time. I’ve had some great memories of college and a few bad ones. So what, then, is there for me to fear now that I’m nearing the end of another chapter in my life? Allow me to explain. Lately, I’ve been pondering this question: Have I been successful in my tour of duty here at UCSD? Success can be measured in different ways, particularly in a university environment. Getting A’s in every single class is certainly successful (no, I’m am definitely not talking about myself). Attending every frat or sorority party is pretty impressive too (not me), as is hooking up with an Alpha Zeta Phi girl (I wish it were me). So is being editor of the opinon section. In my opinion, having a successful college career involves attaining experience. A question we should all ask ourselves from time to time is: “”Have I experienced enough?”” This is a question that I ask myself, as it leads to the answer to the first question regarding success. Experience, as the wise man would confess, comes with age. Experience comes from exposure; it comes from how willing a person is to set himself up for the risk. It comes from the glory of victory and the agony of defeat. It comes from merely living and, more importantly, being able to recognize it. After all, it is quite pointless to have something if you don’t know what it’s for. Have I experienced a lot since I first stepped foot into V Building in the Marshall residence halls? At the very least, I can give a laundry list of the things that I’ve done in my time, but that would be pointless. However, I do still have my regrets. They’re not just petty ones about relationships or classes. “”Have I experienced enough?”” is again the question. And perhaps my trepidation about graduating revolves more around this than even the possibility of not being able to find a job afterwards. I’m afraid that, despite the multitude of things that I’ve been through and accomplished, it’s still not enough. Have I made the most of my time here in college? After talking with a friend, Caroline, I realized how much I had missed out. You see, she’s been to 13 countries and me, well, the farthest place I’ve been is Las Vegas. This is, perhaps, the biggest regret I have about college: not studying abroad. Of course, it was an initial consideration of mine, but I never put the effort behind it. I was thinking about Sweden, actually, as strange as it would seem for an Asian to consider. Hockey is great over there during the winter. But, unfortunately, I didn’t take the opportunity. Here’s some advice to the underclassmen: Go abroad! Though I didn’t, I can assure you it will be the one of the best experiences you will have not only in college but also in life. I’ve been told enough stories from friends who have traveled to know. If you don’t go, you’ll be writing about your regret of not going (maybe even in the school newspaper). That’s where I am now. Don’t get me wrong; college has been thoroughly enjoyable, even though there are some lingering regrets about certain missed opportunities, and I am not referring solely to studying abroad. This takes me to the future and the possibilities in store. For once in my life, I am truly clueless about what will happen in the future. When I was younger, the choices were simple: I’d continue on with school; one grade leads to the next. After high school, I knew I would attend UCSD. But now, things are different. I’ve reached another chasm to cross and all I can do for now is look out into the horizon. There are a dozen bridges that I can cross and it’s nearly impossible to choose between them. Maybe this is where the fear comes from. It’s not from the unwillingness to graduate. Trust me, I’m ready to leave. It’s not the fear of committing myself to an 8-to-5 job. It’s the initial step onto one of the creaky bridges. It’s forcing oneself to take that important step. And there are no nets. Do we, do I, have the experience to choose correctly? Ultimately, there is only one way to find out and that is to take the initial step. And quite a big step it is indeed, but I have the confidence to take it. I’ve gone through a great deal since I came here, both good and bad experiences, but experiences nonetheless. And with each came a lesson and memory to remember. Four years’ worth of hard work and great times leads to this and the pressure is building to show that all that I’ve worked for wasn’t for naught. I’m ready to get the hell out of here, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not scared. ...

Horoscopes

Aries (March 21-April 19) This week, Aries, a friend or relative may ask for detailed explanations of yesterday’s relationships and social promises. Before Wednesday, expect loved ones to focus on past discussions and delicate social events. Don’t shy away from difficult questions, Aries: Before next week both friends and lovers will rely on your honest reactions. After Thursday avoid new debts and large purchases: Resources may be low. Taurus (April 20-May 20) New social plans or fresh forms of entertainment will bring increased physical and emotional energy this week, Taurus. Some Taureans may also encounter a series of workplace flirtations or inappropriate attractions. If so, Taurus, take all as a compliment: Although flattering, new romantic proposals should be carefully considered. Gemini (May 21-June 21) Work routines or daily habits may now need revision, Gem: Before midweek expect a sudden flurry of messages, errands and small details. Use this time to outline your priorities and make important schedule changes: For the next 11 days authority figures will push for fast results. Offer your wisdom, Gem; your emotional input and social insight are accurate. Cancer (June 22-July 22) Try to avoid boastful moments this week, Cancer: Even though confidence is high, others may not be receptive to proud displays. Before midweek many Cancerians may also find that romantic partners or close friends are silent and emotionally withdrawn. Let others have extra time to reflect or gather insight, Cancer: Soon relationships will again move rapidly forward. After Thursday attend to parent/child relationships: Loved ones may now require your daily dedication. Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) Friends and relatives may be self-involved this week, Leo. Early Tuesday watch for loved ones to be overly focused on past disappointments and distant relationships. Some Leos may also experience the return of an old friend or colleague. After Friday watch also for fast financial changes or newly amended records: Research and small money matters may be in error. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) Romantic energy is high this week, Virgo, but it may also be confusing. Before Thursday expect a friend or lover to introduce a new acquaintance. Over the next few days a temporary division of loyalties may be bothersome: Expect social or romantic triangles to be difficult to avoid. No long-lasting or serious overtones can be expected here, but do watch for brief social conflicts and inappropriate flirtations. Wait for clarity: New romantic passions will calm by early next week. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) Lovers or family members may present unusual past information or make contact with an old friend this week, Libra. Unfinished emotions, nostalgia and incomplete relationships will have a tendency to resurface over the next few days. Use this time to release unwanted fears or address long-standing differences with loved ones. Pace yourself and wait for valuable insights. Scorpio (Oct. 24-Nov. 21) Thoroughly discuss new projects and research findings with others this week, Scorp: For the next eight days, work information, facts and figures can easily be mistaken or lost. Some Scorpios may also find that intense romantic flirtations now cause an ongoing distraction. If so, plan for social invitations to sharply increase: New attractions will bring unusual romantic choices before early April. Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) Heavy or negative social obligations will now fade, Sage. Over the last few days many Sagittarians have felt restricted by the emotional demands of another or frustrated by a lack of time for personal relationships. All of this now changes: Early Wednesday expect friends, loved ones and colleagues to adopt a more cheerful and optimistic outlook. Social and workplace atmospheres will soon improve, Sage: By early next week expect new group instructions and rare social introductions. Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) Relationships from the past will now begin to make sense, Cap. Much of this will directly affect outdated love affairs and lingering memories: Expect the past actions or words of loved ones to no longer be distracting. Subtle emotions are at work this week, Cap: Watch for intense dreams, key adjustments in present relationships and a newfound bond with loved ones. Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) Let others handle their own problems this week, Aquarius. Now, a new social and romantic era arrives: after Wednesday expect others to briefly admit their mistakes or offer unique explanations. Trust your instincts, Aquarius: Long-standing differences will not easily fade. Late Thursday a colleague may require extra time to complete an important task: Be patient. Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) Before midweek, Pisces, a colleague may request your daily assistance or guidance. Over the next three days many Pisceans may feel pressured to adopt the role of instructor, group facilitator or public mentor. Offer support but protect your own ideas, Pisces; at the moment friends and younger colleagues may be highly stressed and limited in their skills. If Your Birthday is this Week: Physical and emotional energy will return in the coming five to six weeks, Pisces: Watch for a four- to five-month period of daily social and romantic challenges to now steadily fade. Many Pisceans will now begin a serious effort to improve home relationships and bring greater intimacy into their lives. Romance will gain momentum by early June, Pisces: Remain patient and watch for a variety of new invitations and social opportunities to trigger important emotional decisions. Later this year, group investments, team assignments or fast workplace changes will bring much excitement: By late September a unique career proposal will require serious consideration. ...

Exploring the Human Psyche

The question of who we are and why we exist has plagued mankind for centuries. Millions of theories have been forwarded in an attempt to answer this question. One of the most recent in this barrage of intellectual thought comes from the mind of Dr. Ron Shane, a postdoctoral visiting scholar at UCSD. Shane will be presenting his ideas at a lecture titled “”Revealing the Mystique of the Human Psyche”” Thursday March 8, at 5:15 p.m. in Cognitive Science Building Room 002, here at UCSD. All are welcome to attend this four-part lecture that promises to be stimulating and highly interactive. “”The whole focus is to bring to light that today’s science in neurobiology can begin to give some indication as to how the brain is affected by culture,”” Shane said. “”The brain is a highly complex, ever-changing milieu that is constantly putting up different matrices to different stimuli. In other words, the brain is highly affected by the environment that surrounds it.”” The evening will open with a lecture on “”Man’s Ontological Stultification.”” This lecture will discuss how culture affects us in our everyday lives and how it shapes us as people. According to Shane, the overcrowding of our society, coupled with a government that is making decisions for us, is causing human beings to become more stressed and unhappy. Shane cites studies of rats that showed that, while they are an adaptive species like human beings, they still showed more anxiety and stress when put in an overpopulated environment. He likens this to the current overcrowding situation in the human population. “”The current stance for most people in society is to just go with the flow and not question things,”” Shane said. “”We have to find ways to change and make the environment more adaptive to the natural architecture of our brains.”” Shane will lecture for about 50 minutes before opening up for questions and discussion. During the discussion, he will also read from some of his scholarly works on these topics to spurn questions and debate. After the discussion, Shane will switch gears for a lecture on “”Classical Theosophy and Metaphysics Incensing the Essence of Today’s Artist.”” This lecture will focus on how art should go beyond the naturalism of everyday life and needs to be both stimulating and intoxicating. “”Art can’t be scanty with respect to how it activates the self,”” Shane said. “”In our current society, art is almost baneful. It no longer rejoices in being happy.”” A discussion will again follow the approximately 50-minute lecture. Throughout the evening, Shane wants the audience to be relaxed and to have a good time. He encourages the audience to bring in food and drinks to enjoy during the lectures. Shane, a former English professor at SDSU and UCSD, originally received his doctoral degree from UC Santa Barbara in the social psychology of literature. His doctoral thesis was centered on the Romantic poetry of Blake. He went on to do postdoctoral work on Renaissance literature and theater at UCLA. He is now a postdoctoral visiting scholar at UCSD in the cognitive science department. In addition to his scholarly achievements, Shane is a fourth-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. He has also studied yoga, Taoism and Indian philosophy. He said that his diverse combination of knowledge gives him a keen insight into the nature of human beings. “”I want the evening to be a mental party,”” Shane said. “”My goal is to make this into a liberating, creative experience. I am going to combine the stuff that I am currently studying with the knowledge that I have previously gathered to come up with what I hope is an interesting insight into the human psyche.”” Though Shane promises that he can talk for hours and will stay as long as there are people willing to listen, the room is only reserved until 9 p.m. ...

Horoscopes

Aries (March 21-April 19) Work mates or daily companions may now need to publicly discuss recent events, policies or group projects. This is an excellent time to establish a bond with close colleagues and review common interests. Some Aries natives may also be asked to solve a difficult calculation or scheduling problem. If so, Aries, go slow: the next few weeks may bring unexpected reversals and fast reassignments. After Thursday a past romantic attraction will be revitalized: Watch for subtle and seductive invitations. Taurus (April 20-May 20) Daily routines may be disrupted early this week, Taurus: Expect a colleague or close friend to suddenly change his approach to ongoing projects or duties. Key areas involved may be compiled information, research, financial paperwork or records. Some Taureans, especially those born prior to 1954, may also experience new money decisions or debts: Go slow and watch for hidden clauses. Later this week, older relatives or roommates may be moody and distant: Expect minor home tensions. Gemini (May 21-June 21) Official duties, time schedules and project instructions will now intensify. Over the next few days, expect team dynamics and social outlets to work in your favor. For many Geminis this is a time when others will offer highly creative ideas and worthwhile solutions. Be optimistic, Gem, but also expect miscalculations or ongoing time restrictions. After Wednesday new messages and quick decisions will change a key friendship: Social versus romantic priorities may require added discussion. Cancer (June 22-July 22) After a period of social disagreements and competing jealousies, many Cancerians will now find stability in key relationships. Before March 24, expect negative social influences, misinformation or overly sensitive friends to change their attitude. Ongoing criticism and daily restrictions will now fade: Watch for loved ones to be expressive and passionate. After Thursday, money promises will change. For the next three weeks authority figures will be cautious, Cancer: Remain patient. Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) Romance and long-term friendship are accented this week, Leo. Over the next few days many Leos will begin an intense period of emotional growth in close relationships. Long-standing issues of romantic reluctance or divided priorities will now slowly be solved, Leo: expect loved ones to express a new awareness of freedom, seductive attraction and intimacy. Single Leos may now experience powerful and potentially disruptive flirtations: Be selective and watch for rare social complications. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) Social comfort, romantic belonging and shared goals will this week arrive in long-term relationships, Virgo. Loved ones will now rekindle their original feelings of attraction and romantic enjoyment: Expect past memories and old sentiments to soon create a deepening trust. Single Virgos, over the next two weeks, can expect a slowly developing sensuality in a new relationship. Be receptive, Virgo, and explore fresh emotions: New commitments will bring added confidence and renewed vitality. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) Over the next few days, Libra, your practical wisdom will offer solid rewards. Before mid-week, watch for a close colleague or friend to introduce new information, social contacts or key proposals. All are positive, Libra, and will soon lead to expanding optimism, fresh work options and renewed faith in long term career goals. After Thursday romantic communications may be difficult: Give friends or lovers extra time to settle family or home differences. Scorpio (Oct. 24-Nov. 21) Dreams and emotional flashes will be a strong theme this week, Scorp: Late Tuesday, a brief but intense period of moody reflection arrives. For many Scorpios, contemplation and deep thought will now help clarify their long term needs and beliefs concerning key relationships. Romantic or social commitments may be more involved than previously anticipated: Before next week take extra time for informed, appropriate decisions. An emotionally demanding week, Scorp: Stay focused. Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) Early this week, Sage, your creativity and sensitivity are extremely high. Over the next few days, watch loved ones closely for indications of change: Many Sagittarians will now greatly expand their emotional commitments, social promises or daily home activities. Some Sagittarians will also experience improved work relations: Fading power struggles will be an important issue. After Friday artistic and social insight are accented: Enjoy sudden flashes of awareness and fast invitations from friends. Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) Before midweek, Cap, a brief but intense period of reflection and inward thought arrives. Key issues may involve recent social events or new changes to long-term relationships. For most Capricorns this period of contemplation will be the precursor to two to three days of quick social changes or highly public emotional discussions. After Thursday expect lovers or long-term friends to initiate new home ideas or romantic proposals. Be expressive but sensitive, Cap: Loved ones are now vulnerable. Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) The past fights back this week, Aquarius: Late Tuesday watch for both lovers and close friends to return to old ideals or re-introduce outdated concepts. Some Aquarians may now experience minor conflicts with loved ones concerning family issues, romantic decisions or yesterday’s roles in close relationships. Don’t expect others to make emotional sense over the next few days, Aquarius: Frustration, lagging confidence or regret may be a strong theme. Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) Let romantic partners or long-term friends set the tone this week, Pisces: before midweek, loved ones will strongly benefit from publicly expressing their views or helping plan group events. Expect others to adopt a more active and outspoken role in relationships: This is a positive time for displays of social confidence and romantic love. Later this week a workplace setback may be bothersome: Watch for delayed records, misinformation and revised assignments to disrupt daily duties. If Your Birthday is this Week Social relationships will dramatically change over the next two to three months: Watch for several fresh introductions or a new circle of friends to arrive before the end of March. Many Pisceans will now gain powerful business alliances or rare future career opportunities through new social contacts. After mid-April, family restrictions and misunderstandings with older relatives will temporarily fade: expect a five- to six-month period of approval and social acceptance from previously cautious loved ones. Romantic commitments will build slowly this year, Pisces: Don’t press for quick or final decisions before mid- to late September. ...

Lying For Liquor

With over half of UCSD’s student population under the age of 21, fake identification cards are used frequently to purchase alcohol and to get by security at bars and night clubs. Although most minors know that possession of alcohol and the use of a false identity are crimes with heavy penalties, that doesn’t stop the masses of liquor-hungry minors who successfully cheat the law each weekend. In San Diego, which is home to three large universities and many junior colleges, liquor-selling establishments and police officers are on guard for drinking and the use of fake IDs. Minors who use false identification to purchase alcohol should be on guard as well, especially at establishments close to university campuses. Both Ralphs and a local mom-and-pop liquor stores admit that they urge their employees to be suspicious because of the volume of underage shoppers trying to buy alcohol. These establishments have on hand the Alcoholic Beverage Control identification manual, their “”bible,”” said one owner. However, employees do not necessarily have training for spotting false IDs. ABC officer Carl DeWing said that ABC does run a voluntary program called “”Licensee Education on Alcohol and Drugs,”” in which they train employees and employers on how to spot fake IDs, intoxicated people and drugs. Most establishments, however, opt not to participate in the program. When faced with a shopper who looks to be under 30, their guess is as good as yours. Employees who unknowingly sell alcohol to a minor usually lose their jobs. They can be taken to court and can be fined or penalized. The liquor-selling establishment undergoes a different set of penalties. The 1995 ABC Three Strikes Law was passed in California due to the state legislature’s realization that “”a serious problem”” with drinking among minors exists in the state, DeWing said. For a first offense, ABC enforces a 15-day license suspension, substitutable with a fine of 50 percent of an establishment’s total income for 15 days. For the second offense in a three-year period, the establishment’s liquor license is suspended for 25 days with no possibility of a fine. The third offense is a revocation of the liquor license, the equivalant death sentence for a business in a majority of cases. While the ABC deals with the establishment’s penalties for the crime, the local police department handles the criminal aspect for minors. Minors caught buying alcohol with a fake ID will get between 28 and 32 hours of community service, a $250 fine, and may have their driver’s licenses suspended for up to one year. This is a zero-tolerance offense. The charge is possession of alcohol. If the ID used is a California one, both a California vehicle code violation and a business and professional code violation are tacked on. If the ID is out of state, only the latter is charged. According to the San Diego Police Department, there is no difference in penalties between using a fake ID and using someone else’s borrowed ID. However, simply possessing a fake ID does not necessarily come with heavy consequences. Police detained Muir sophomore Philip Miller one night, and they searched his wallet. “”I had an out-of-state ID, a really shitty one that only worked in high school,”” Miller said. “”But they just confiscated it and never said another word about it to me.”” The police department sends undercover officers into liquor-selling establishment to see if they are furnishing alcohol to minors. They also patrol nightclubs and places of high concentration of people for overintoxication, overcrowding, drugs and other activities in the crowd. The local law enforcement also sends minor decoys into establishments to make sure they’re not furnishing alcohol to minors. The decoys are usually police cadets, boy scouts, relatives of police officers or members of the local Boys Club, and are supervised by a police officer. They must reveal their true identity to the employee to avoid entrapment. The Minor Decoy Operation was challenged in 1992, but in 1994 it was proven a valid method, granted that the decoys don’t try to bribe, lie or otherwise induce sale, and that they look over the age of 21. The hesitation and precautions that liquor-selling establishments use when selling to a shopper who looks to be under 30 are well-founded. The owner of a mom-and-pop liquor store near UCSD said that officers come in two to three times a year and hang around the store for 10 to 20 minutes, pretending to read magazines. He cards every shopper because he is near campus and has a lot at stake because the store is a family business. As a result, he said, he has refused sales to up to 20 customers in a weekend. The Ralphs Corporation denies sale to out-of-state ID holders, and although disputes naturally arise, its policy holds fast. Unlike the mom-and-pop store, however, it confiscates suspect identification that does not conform to the ABC handbook. The average confiscations vary from 10 to 15 every few months. Moondoggie’s Restaurant in Pacific Beach confiscates IDs as well. Its policy includes the use of flashlights to check ID cards, and close examination to see if the ID matches its owner. It accepts out-of-state IDs and confiscates one to two IDs per night on average. The restaurant’s owner said that the number of IDs confiscated is larger during spring break and other times of high patronage. Muir sophomore Nicole Caven had her ID taken by Moondoggies on a weekday afternoon. “”The guy was a real asshole,”” Caven said. “”He asked me a lot of questions, my age, when I graduated from high school and ended up confiscating my ID. It cost me 50 bucks.”” Even with these restrictions and the possibility of legal penalty, minors have always found ways to get around the rules. For those who own fake IDs, fraudulently using the state seal is a misdemeanor. However, for those who make fake IDs, illegal reproduction of the California insignia is a felony. A local student and maker of fake IDs said he is aware of these consequences, yet he still does it “”to help people out.”” He makes IDs for underage friends, for those 21 and over with underage significant others, and even for people wanting to reap the financial benefits of youth ski passes. The process is simple. One creates a template from scratch on a computer, then fills in the necessary information and photo. “”All you need is a good scanner and a Photoshop program,”” the student who makes the IDs said. The type of fake ID he makes usually costs between $60 and $100, but he charges $40 because he said he’s not in it for the money. He and his friends only used a few key tools and the smarts they came to school with to create the IDs. He said at universities with students who are smart, driven, underage and who have the desire to purchase alcohol, it is ridiculous for authorities to assume that minors won’t find a way. The Internet is also a growing source for purchasing illegal identification. There are dozens of Internet sites devoted to the sale of fabricated identification. These sites describe their products as “”novelty”” and “”souvenir”” items, and many have disclaimers notifying the buyer of the legal repercussions. IDs can cost up to $100 on these sites but mostly range from $40 to $60. The business is growing and the locations of the sites are difficult to track. Although these sites are illegal, law enforcement would rather spend their time and effort preventing the sale of alcohol to minors than tracking down small-time hackers. Using false identification is a crime commonly committed by minors, especially in university towns. Police will continue to crack down just as minors will continue to rebel. Minors, however, should be aware of the legal penalties for this crime and the hazard it brings to the establishments from which they buy. ...

Questions Regarding Career Choices Often Plague College Students

When I was about 5 years old, I remember filling in some kind of personal survey — the precursor to those that inundate everyone’s e-mail inboxes nowadays — with a variety of questions. The questions were of the sort that one could expect a small child to be able to answer, relating to favorite color, food, animal and so on. The question that sticks in my mind is, however, “”What do you want to be when you grow up?”” I remember printing “”a dentist”” in clumsy capitals that hovered above the line. My response was wholly arbitrary. I don’t ever even recall having any particular interest in dentistry. I likely forgot about my answer soon after I wrote it. I think about the times I’ve pondered my career path since then, and I realize that if I were asked the same question today, my response would probably be just as arbitrary. Unlike many people I have known who have struggled arduously with the prospects of finding a job once they have left college, I am unconcerned with the future because I know I can be content with just about anything I find myself doing. I’ve found that my happiness with a job comes in knowing that it’s a helpful and morally enriching experience, not in worrying about finding enjoyment in the actual tasks I’m completing. I have realized that when it comes to a career, it comes down to this: All work should be useful, productive and honorable. Anything beyond that is just details, and secondary to the importance of the three criteria I have mentioned. As long as I am fulfilling my obligation as far as being useful to others in my occupation, I feel that I can be very happy with whatever I do. This outlook, however, has caused me problems as I try to figure out what I’m going to spend most of my life doing. I’d be just as happy driving a bulldozer as editing the poetry of Seamus Heaney for the next 50 years, as long as someone needed me to do it. It’s not that I cannot find a passion; it is just that I have too many of them. I would just as soon throw myself into archaeology as medicine, and probably with the same amount of gusto. Many of my friends aspire toward very specialized career paths. I’ve never been like them. I admire the drive that spurs them relentlessly on, stomping over all that impedes their pursuits. My best friend has wanted to become a doctor ever since he was small, and he has not lost sight of that desire. Others I know are intent upon law school or graduate study in a particular field. I’ve thought about going to graduate school, but I realized that whatever I might study, it would be because it seemed like it might be something fun and enriching to try — not because I have a driving passion to study a particular field. If I decided to try law, I would go to law school “”for fun,”” taking it in as an interesting experience (much to the horror, I’m sure, of those cooped up every weekend with their LSAT books). I would study medicine because it would be interesting to be able to help people in such a specialized way, not because of a passion I’ve held since childhood. The ambivalence that characterizes my outlook on setting for a lifelong career is equally in force when it comes to the work I do now. I split my time between two realms: the literary and the technological. Neither has ever really held sway over me. I enjoy the editing I do at the Guardian, and I like the computer work that I do at my other job. However, when I picture myself cooped up in a high rise reading newspaper articles all day for mistakes, or spending 70 hours per week in a cubicle in Silicon Valley, I confess I don’t feel a great deal of excitement. Perhaps I have yet to find that one magical thing that will wed me to a particular career path, but I believe instead that everything’s the same to me at the end of the day, as long as it has been helpful. In time, I know I will tire of computers and editing, and it will be time to move on. I’m not pressed for time to decide on what I want to do. I’ll be here at least another year-and-a-half — and I’m toying with the idea of adding another major, which would give me nearly three years before I have to hit the job market or try to sell myself to a graduate school. Somehow, though, I don’t think anything’s going to change in the interim. I can see myself becoming one of those people who spends her life doing a variety of anomalous and varied things. Summer jobs will afford me the opportunity to try new things, but that doesn’t lead me to believe that ardor for a particular career is lurking around the corner. I am pretty sure that I have already found it — not in the choice of a particular pursuit, but in the assurance that whatever I do, I know it will not be a waste of time for others, nor for myself. ...

Book Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Charlie Brown and the Rest of the Gang

Have you ever questioned the existence of God? Have you ever had a crush on someone and gotten too choked up to say anything whenever that person is near? Have you ever daydreamed? If you said yes to any of these questions, then I would recommend picking up “”Peanuts: A Golden Celebration.”” This is compilation of the best, most thoughtful comic strips from the “”Peanuts”” collection by the late Charles M. Schulz. The selection of the strips, which includes the very first “”Peanuts”” strip published Oct. 2, 1950 and even prototype strips called “”Li’l Folks,”” epitomizes Schulz’s long and distinguished career. Schulz died from complications from a stroke last year, only weeks after the legend decided to retire after 50 years. But “”Peanuts: A Golden Celebration”” is much more than just a collection of comics, just as “”Peanuts”” is much more than a simple children’s comic strip. It is a history book of Charlie Brown and the gang and also the history of Schulz. So much of his life was ingrained into the comic that his name is synonymous with “”Peanuts.”” He is “”Peanuts”” and “”Peanuts”” will always be him. “”Peanuts: A Golden Celebration”” gets readers up-close and personal with the life of Schulz — his influences, the people he has influenced, his interpretation of religion (Christianity in particular) and adaptation of his life into the strip. In a sense, the comic strip is a history of his life. Many look at “”Peanuts”” (a title that Schulz disliked and never understood), and see a child’s comic. True, it is that. But it is much more than a child’s gleeful laughter. “”‘Peanuts,’ like any great work of art, can be read on many levels,”” Sharon Begley wrote in “”Newsweek.”” “”For every child who giggles over Sally’s jump-rope troubles … an adult nods at the strip’s tragicomic view of life,”” Begley stated. Tragicomic is a term often used to describe one of William Shakespeare’s greatest and final play, “”The Tempest.”” “”Peanuts”” is not a simple story of a moon-faced child and his gang of friends. It is a story of children placed in adult-like situations. The blatant truth of life, the harshness of reality and the pains of love are not what we expect children to face, yet these characters do. Anxiety, self-doubt and the betrayal of innocence plague them. How many times has Schroeder spurned Lucy? How many times has Lucy pulled the football away from Charlie Brown? How many times has Charlie Brown got too nervous to speak when the Little Red Haired Girl is around? “”Peanuts”” is a story of juxtapositions. The characters live in innocent times yet they are not, by any means, innocent. The scene is set in the post-World War II era, yet there is no Vietnam. The Plumbers never broke into the Watergate Hotel, there is no Monica, no Cold War, no racism. True, these things may have actually occurred, but through the veiled eyes of children, they did not happen. After all, we can always expect to see Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin to arrive. And we can always expect to see him disappointed. This is the reality of life pitted against the innocence of children. As innocent as they may be, they are at, the same time, not innocent. Lucy enjoys torturing Charlie Brown, the every-man that represents us. Charlie Brown suffers from failure and disillusionment, as we all do. He has desires that we all have: “”All I want is a normal life …”” he said to Lucy during one of their psychiatric sessions. Peppermint Patty’s secret crush on her “”Chuck”” does not, and never will, end the way she wants it. As many times as Lucy pulls the football away, Charlie Brown still has the innocence to fall for it again. Schulz was a devout Christian and his beliefs surface in the comic. The strip puts into question faith in God and man, something we have all done, lying in bed in the dead of night. “”Sometimes I lie awake at night and I ask, ‘Why me?'”” Charlie Brown says in the middle of the night. Then a voice answers, “”‘Nothing personal. Your name just happened to turn up.'”” Despite all that transpires around their lives, the children have a devout following to God. The same applies to their belief in the goodness of man. Charlie will always attempt to kick the football; Lucy will always try to catch the baseball. Linus and Franklin often quote from the Old Testament, particularly the Book of Job. The significance of this lies in the story of Job, a man who had everything. God, sure of Job’s love and trust, allows the Devil to tempt and torture Job. But at the end, after many trials and tragedies, Job arises from the decay with his devotion to God still intact. The same type of devotion to God and man applies to Charlie Brown and his friends. The characters posses an unwavering belief in what is right and moral, something we all aspire to have, yet fail to achieve. Each major character possesses a human quality that represents each of us. Lucy is the mischievous, frank one. Linus and Franklin personify our religious sides. Snoopy represents the many faces of our character. Pig Pen “”may be carrying soil that was trod upon by Solomon or Nebuchadnezzar or Genghis Khan.”” And Charlie Brown epitomizes our innocence, our pains and ultimately our redemption as he is the Christ-figure that suffers for his fellows. “”Peanuts: A Golden Celebration”” represents all of these aspects. Every strip was chosen to represent everything that “”Peanuts”” represents. Perhaps the most poignant line from the book was one rather uncharacteristic of Lucy: “”Happiness is a warm puppy.”” ...