March 8, 2001
The Daze Rant
| March 8, 2001
Who wears that? I’ve heard it a million times from a million different “tee-shirts only guys” and a dozen “tapered jeans girls.” These fashionably apathetic masses stare blankly at the creations that glitter on the runways of Milan, Paris, Hong Kong, London, and New York semi-annually, and wonder in disbelief why anyone would waste a yard of material on such impractical apparel.
The genius and forward-thinking creativity of such haute couture greats as Karl Lagerfeld, Valentino, Emanuel Ungaro, and Jean-Paul Gaultier are lost on these poor, close-minded souls. Little do they know that these artists are the people responsible for generating healthy, growing economies as well as keeping the timeless and preeminent function of art alive and vital. There’s nothing more unflattering for a figure than an unfounded opinion, and when it comes to fashion, there are a plethora of people wandering this badly coordinated planet just asking for a visit from the fashion police. Ignorant hordes of suburbanite Americans open up the latest issue of Vogue or In Style as they sit in their doctor’s office, and gape at the audacious and attention-grabbing garb that is showcased by the most talented tailors and seamstresses each season. The insane styles occasionally witnessed strutting down the runway can show a fashion designer as an unlikely physicist or architect.
What these sweater-set soccer moms and metal-mouth teenagers don’t realize is that these bold and extraordinary designs are fulfilling their purpose as beautifully as they fill Gisele’s curvasious frame. What better exposure could a couturier ask for than to have his or her design featured in a nationally syndicated magazine that will cause the world population to balk at their eccentricity and seemingly useless garments? It’s marketing genius. The crazier and more unbelievable the design, the more bulbs flash at the show, the more magazine covers and fashion spreads, the more notoriety, the more money. And who thinks its worthless? You? The one in the Tommy sweatshirt over there? Right.
The second reason we should all be setting up small shrines to the fashion gods is that their creative genius tends to trickle down to even our de la gauche level and spice up the middle class world of retail. No one can deny that they’re not at least a little bit sick of Mavi jeans, Burberry scarves, and the Tiffany’s version of the snap bracelet for college students. Designers are creating new looks and concepts right now that will eventually sweep the nation.
Thankfully, some of the innovative, albeit extreme, ideas that surface on the world’s best-known catwalks, lend new ideas and new trends to the mix of the same old boring styles that stagnate from season to season. You can count on Versace and Gucci to shock and amaze the world, but you can also count on Barney’s and Bloomingdale’s to tone it down and knock it off to appeal to the masses.
So the next time you berate great masters of the fashion world, think again. They’re quietly changing the way you yourself dress and making a Bottega Veneta sack full of money doing it.
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March 9, 2001
Funding and expansion of the Africana Studies and Research Center (ASRC) was the subject of a resolution debated by the Student Assembly (S.A.) yesterday afternoon. The S.A. passed the “Resolution Regarding the Fundraising Campaign for the Africana Studies and Research Center” in a vote of 12-2, with one abstention. The resolution recommends “that the administration, in conjunction with students and student groups, undertake a capital development campaign for the renovation and expansion of [ASRC].” Specifically, it suggests that the Center be placed “as a funding priority in the Alumni Affairs and Development’s solicitation of University gifts,” and be added to the College and Unit Giving Opportunities list which is sent to alumni to solicit donations to the University. A few members of the Assembly opposed a clause that specified “giving opportunities” for alumni — in particular, “a stipend for independent study by honors students in ASRC.” Amy Gershkoff ’02, a minority liaison, questioned whether or not stipends and grants are given to students in other ethnic studies programs. David Mahon ’01, the outgoing Student-elected Trustee, said that Gershkoff was making the wrong comparison. It is wrong to compare the Center with a program of study, such as the Latino Studies program, and it would be more appropriate to compare the Center to the College of Arts and Sciences. Derrick Zandpour ’02, the international liaison, proposed an amendment to strike the line about the stipend from the resolution. He advocated focusing money on other projects at Cornell, because a stipend for independent study “would only help one student.” Kira Moriah ’03, the vice president finance, clarified that the stipend was only a suggested donation for alumni. “If someone wanted to give a stipend, they could do so,” she said. The amendment failed. Mike Kalogiannis ’01, a College of Agriculture and Life Sciences representative, stated that one of the original intents of the ASRC was to be separate from the University. He cited its location on Triphammer Rd., far from the Arts Quad. Ken Glover, residence hall director of Ujamaa residential college, disagreed. “Other [Africana Studies] classes are offered on central campus,” he said, explaining its integration with the rest of the University. He elaborated on the history of the ASRC, saying that the Center was created in 1969 and was located on Wait Ave. behind Clara Dickson Hall. It burned down the next year as a result of arson. Because of space issues and a choice by the faculty and the University, the facility was moved to Triphammer Rd., he said. Gershkoff questioned why S.A. President Uzo Asonye ’02 and Mahon, who wrote the resolution, had not proposed to absorb the ASRC into the College of Arts and Sciences. “The ASRC wants to remain as a distinct entity on campus,” Asonye said. He added that it would lose funds and faculty lines if it were absorbed. Cornell community members voiced their opinions during the meeting. Obioma Ndubizu ’04 told how, when her father helped her move in to her dormitory this year, he commented that the ASRC is the only building that “has not changed since 1972 when he graduated,” she said. Frustrated from opposition by some S.A. members, another female student said, “It seems almost like an insult that you’re not going to fund a center [that is nationally recognized].” Many of the speakers’ concerns focused on the physical inadequacy of the ASRC building. “The University has been neglecting Africana just [by] not allowing it to expand for years,” said Malik Dixon ’02, a member of Black Students United. Students have been fundraising for the Center as part of an on-going campaign, according to Glover. “Why are students in a major University doing a function of the Alumni Affairs and Development office?” Glover asked. “We’re not saying the University’s not funding the Africana Center,” he said. Rather, they want the University “saying to alumni, ‘We need your support to help this center grow and thrive and expand,'” Glover said. In other business yesterday, the S.A. voted against a “Resolution to Restructure the Student Activity Fee Process.” Moriah, chair of the Appropriations Committee, also presented a “Resolution to Approve Revisions to the Student Activity Fee Setting Process.” The revisions are a “general streamlining of the process” that have been under construction since last fall, Moriah said. Changes include making it easier for returning groups to apply for funding, and requiring the signatures of 1500 undergraduates rather than 15 percent of the undergraduate population on a petition for by-line funding. Additional changes to the voting structure would require a vote by half of the S.A. to deny funding to a returning group, and three-fifths of the S.A. to approve a funding request by new groups. “I think it’s a pretty good compromise between what Assembly members feel is necessary and what groups feel they can do,” she said, calling it “the big spring legislation.” “We’ll probably be looking at this document for about three weeks before we vote on it,” Asonye said. Archived article by Heather Schroeder
March 9, 2001
The Ivy League baseball teams are about as even as can be. No one school has yet proven that it will rise above the rest of the pack, making for a pair of very appealing races i n the Gehrig Rolfe Divisions. With the departure of possibly the two best pitchers in the league from last season, last year’s division titleists — Dartmouth and Princeton — will be easier to bring down. How do the teams stack up? The preseason pick to win the Ivy crown is defending champion Princeton — but the Tigers have a tough road ahead of them, and this is as far from a sure thing as it can get. Here is this season’s team-by-team breakdown, with a few comments from Cornell head coach Tom Ford. Gehrig Division 1. Princeton Last year’s Ivy champ led the Gehrig division with a 13-7 record, but will have to cope with the early departure of ace Chris Young, who signed a pro contract for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Senior Max Krance does return, however, sporting the league’s best batting average last year (.389). The Tigers also feature last season’s saves leader, sophomore David Boehle. Although there are no superstars like Young on this year’s squad, Princeton is still loaded with talent and has an excellent chance to take the division again. Ford says: “They’ve been pretty much unbeatable, but now, obviously, [Young] is gone.” 2. Cornell The Red went 11-9 last season in league play to finish two games behind league champ Princeton. Ford’s troops are led at the plate by junior outfielder Erik Rico and on the mound by junior Brendan McQuaid. After winning six of its last eight Ivy games to finish the 2000 campaign, Cornell will look to continue that momentum right into this season. Ford says: “There’s not much separating us [from Princeton, Dartmouth, and Brown].” 3. Penn The Quakers’ 9-11 Ivy record (third place in the division) last season can be easily improved upon this season if the pitching staff gels like it is supposed to. Ten pitchers return from last year’s squad, but there is no definitive closer. Jeff Gregorio rounds out the battery and should also lead the offense. The loss of shortstop Glen Ambrosius should be counteracted by the return of the rest of the infield. Sophomore Andrew McCreery will split time between pitching and the outfield, and should provide help in both spots. 4. Columbia The Lions pulled up the rear of the division last season with a 6-14 mark, and in order to climb out of the cellar they will have to improve on a horrid defensive showing. Columbia was last in the league in both team ERA (8.80) and fielding percentage (.934). Junior Adam Schwartz will have to pick up the slack for the pitching staff. Senior first baseman Peter Aswad will lead the offense after leading the Ivies in RBI (51) and tying for the league lead in home runs with 10 last season. Rolfe Division 1. Dartmouth Last season’s Big Green squad had, at 17-3, easily the best regular season record in the Ivy League. The division champs will be burdened by the absence of Conor Brooks, last year’s senior who led the league in ERA (1.92), wins (eight), innings pitched (79.2), and strikeouts (84). Dartmouth also lost James Little and Brian Nickerson, who topped the Ancient Eight in hits and homers, respectively. It will be up to junior John Velosky to ensure that the Green’s pitching staff remains the best. Ford says: “I look for [Dartmouth] to be up there fighting for it again. They lost their best pitcher, but they have pretty good depth at pitching.” 2. Brown The Bears finished last season with an 11-9 Ivy record, good for second in the Rolfe Division, and are in position to contend for the title again. Brown returns seven of its nine position players, including senior shortstop Dan Kantrovitz. Two years ago as a sophomore, Kantrovitz won the Blair Bat Award for the top Ivy hitter. Classmate Todd Larussi, last year’s Ivy leader in doubles, centers a speedy outfield. On the hill, Jim Johnson, a two-time all-Ivy choice, leads the starters. Ford says: “They’ve had a pretty good run of it the last couple of years, and they have a good crew, especially their best pitcher, who’s coming back as well.” 3. Harvard The Crimson had a disappointing season last year, finishing third in the division at 10-10 after three straight titles. In order for Harvard to rebound, it will have to improve on the worst team batting average in the Ivy League (.260). Junior shortstop Mark Mager is a threat to steal bases and, along with classmate Faiz Shakir, forms a solid double-play combination. Senior hurler John Birtwell could very well be the best pitcher in the league this year. Ford says: “I know Harvard’s going to jump back and be stronger this year.” 4. Yale After having the worst record in the Ivy League last year and finishing last in the division at 3-17, the Bulldogs don’t show many signs of improvement. They lost their best pitcher, Sudha Reddy, to graduation, and the hitting corps also took a hit. The Elis’ bright spot is junior pitcher Jon Steitz, who fanned 48 hitters in 54 innings of work last season. Classmates Matt McCarthy and Craig Breslow will also boost the bullpen. Archived article by Alex Fineman