CARPOOLING NOT EASY SOLUTION FOR PROBLEMS OF ALL COMMUTERS

BY MELISSA NEELEY

NEWS REPORTER

Some UH students are now considering carpooling as an effective way to combat the parking problem on campus.

Difficulties such as clashing class schedules, however, lead many to give up their search for other commuting students to carpool to class.

"We're not sure how many students are commuting (to UH) because it is so early in the semester, but last semester we issued a total of 24,500 permits. It's very difficult to find students who come from the same part of town and who share similar schedules," said Gerald Hagan, manager of UH's Parking and Transportation Services.

"We have a data base for carpooling purposes only with lists of schedules and where you're coming from in the city so you can see if your schedule is compatible with anyone else," Hagan said.

Initially, students think it is a good idea to carpool because they can save gas and money, but once they start carpooling, it can become inconvenient because schedules can clash, Hagan said.

"We realize there are a lot of difficulties (in carpooling), but what we (Parking and Transportation Services) want to do is experiment with the idea and provide a means for students so they can contact each other, and we'd like to see more response from them," Hagan said.

In the fall, two ads were placed in The Daily Cougar by Parking and Transportation Services, yet student response was low; there were not more than 35 responses by the end of the semester, Hagan said.

"Students are trying to relieve the problem of congestion on campus, and if we can get more than one person in an automobile, we have eliminated one automobile, and more parking is available," he said.

Some students went to Parking and Transportation Services to see the list of those wishing to find others to carpool with, yet found no luck because the list was so small.

"I filled out a survey in The Daily Cougar last semester and was surprised to see so few names on the list of people who wanted to carpool. It really is difficult to find someone to carpool with since I have a class at 8 a.m.," John Bhalla, a freshman majoring in business, said.

"The most important problem is to find someone who is reliable, and that isn't an easy thing to do with so many people in the school," Bhalla said.

Other students have found people to carpool with on certain days of the week, yet continue to search for people to carpool on a continual basis.

"I'm carpooling with someone on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but would love to find someone for Monday, Wednesday and Friday," said Janette Coym, a resident of Katy.

"I filled it (a survey for carpooling) out last semester and went to Transportation Services. I don't want to fight the I-10 traffic; there's no way you can make an 8 a.m. class without fighting the highway traffic. I drive about 22 miles to get here," Coym, a senior majoring in engineering, said.

"I see quite a few UH stickers on the back of cars around here. It's just a matter of locating people to get to class. I'd like people to call me," Coym said.

Some students cannot carpool because they have night classes: "I can't find anyone with a remotely similar schedule as me. I filled out the survey hoping to find someone who had a similar schedule -- even one or two days would have been fine. But the list I was given for carpoolers was ridiculous because there were only 20 people on it. There's just not enough people involved. There's got to be people in a school this size who have a similar schedule as me," said Janis Abel, a graduate student in architecture.

Saving money by not purchasing parking stickers may be in the minds of many people who have considered carpooling, yet Abel said she is interested in it because she doesn't like to drive to school everyday if she has an alternative.

"I think we drive too much, and it's impossible for me to ride the bus to school and I live too far to drive a bike to school. At least carpooling would help a little bit," Abel said.

Abel said she has lived in other countries such as Australia where she did not have to drive a car to get to any destination. She said she misses that particular aspect since she must travel everywhere by car in the U.S.

 

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COUGARS STUFF RED RAIDERS

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

The Cougars added Texas Tech to their list of match-up zone victims Saturday in an impressive 77-58 win in Hofheinz in front of a not-so-impressive crowd of 4,256.

Red Raider center Will Flemons proved he can score; he led all scores with 23, but Houston center Charles Outlaw showed once again that a more physical post with a supporting cast will beat a one-man team every time.

Outlaw was outscored by Flemons 23-14, but beat him by miles in the physical aspects of post-play. He out-rebounded Flemons 14-8. He had more blocks, more assists and more steals.

Outlaw said there were no special preperations made for Flemons.

"We were in a zone a lot, so nobody really had to take him," Outlaw said. "Most of his points came on loose balls and rebounds."

One can hardly blame Flemons for Tech's poor showing; he did his part. But none of the other Raiders really bothered to help.

Apart from Flemons, only one Red Raider, Lance Hughes, scored in double figures with 12.

The Cougars, however, were more than willing to lend Outlaw a hand. Along with Outlaw's 14 points, three other Cougars scored more than 10. Junior forward Derrick Smith came off the bench to score 11 in 17 minutes.

Craig Upchurch's 17 points moved him ahead of former Cougar Greg Anderson for eighth place on the UH career scoring list.

For the second straight game, the Cougars came out on fire hitting on their first six baskets. By 12:04 of the first, Houston had opened up a 14-point lead at 22-8.

The closest Tech got to the Cougars in the first half was at 8:34, when a Hughes lay-up put the score at 29-16.

However, an Outlaw jam just a moment later sparked an 11-5 Houston run, and the Cougar lead was up to 19 with 5:07 left in the half.

At halftime the score was 46-29.

Things got no better for the Red Raiders in the second half, but the Cougars' play became sloppy and their lead shrunk to 11 at 48-37 with 15:26 remaining.

However, the Cougars quickly recovered and an Upchurch jumper capped a 13-7 Houston run and at 8:26, the lead was back up to 17 at 61-44.

Houston scored only two more points than Tech in the second half; however, the Red Raiders failed to mount any sort of threat to a Cougar lead which grew to double digits and stayed there.

In the end, Tech could manage to score no more in the second half than they scored in the first half.

The Cougar defense has played consistently well all year, but Outlaw said the offense is what has made the difference in the past three games.

"The team is starting to hit their shots," Outlaw said. "I don't know why, they're just starting to hit."

The Cougars did miss some; however, Outlaw was in the right place when they did. His nine offensive rebounds are the highest of any Cougar this season. His total of 14 boards is a personal season high.

The Cougars travel to College Station to take on the Aggies Wednesday.

 

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BIG BUCKS TO BE MADE IN SMALL BUSINESS

BY KATHY ALLEN

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

Students are advised to think small this year as they contemplate entry into the job market -- small business, that is.

While big business is taking a crash course in downsizing, some areas of small business (defined as less than 500 employees) are growing at rates of 10 percent or more per year, said Geoffrey Kessler, director of the Kessler Exchange, a small-business support organization.

Elizabeth Gatewood, region director of the UH Small Business Development Center, is equally optimistic.

The center provides consulting and education to small business owners and publishes The Houston 100, an annual compilation of the city's fastest growing private companies. Last year's top 100 had achieved growth rates ranging from 200 to 13,000 percent over a three-year period.

The ability to understand and take advantage of economic and demographic trends is one of the ingredients for success.

Gatewood and Kessler, both trend-watchers, cited several growth areas that appear to be destined for success in the '90s.

"(Environmental services) is going to be the hot industry for the '90s," Gatewood said. "There are a number of laws on the books, and I think there's going to be a great push for clean air and clean water."

The number-one company listed in The Houston 100, Tanknology Corporation International, has the technology for testing underground storage tanks for leakage.

From 1988 to 1990, the company's annual sales increased from $142,886 to $18,378,262, an increase of 12,862 percent.

Kessler said health care, elder care and education are the top three areas for 1992 with the following examples:

As rising insurance rates have forced shorter hospital stays, patients leave the hospital before they have fully recuperated. Entrepreneurs have filled the gap by providing patients with health care services in their homes.

The elderly parent needs minimal assistance or possibly just the companionship of others to make it through the day, but family members either work full-time or live too far away to assist. As a result, elder care is in great demand throughout the country.

Workplace technology has become increasingly more sophisticated, yet schools are not adequately training young people, and corporate training departments are being eliminated as a cost-saving measure. Hence, companies are spending $2.1 billion a year on training, and much of it is being supplied by independent consultants.

Other areas Kessler addressed include security and crime prevention, service subcontracting, time-saving products, infrastructure repair, information gathering and organizing, and child care.

But besides their healthy growth rates, students should consider working for small businesses because they offer employees greater autonomy and less specialization resulting in an opportunity to develop more skills, Gatewood said.

Also, employees typically find themselves closer to the action and feel they are producing tangible results, which gives them a greater feeling of accomplishment, she said.

Students should be aware of some disadvantages, though. The starting salaries and benefits are sometimes considerably less than those offered by larger companies. But the potential for salary growth can often exceed that of the larger company, Gatewood said.

Also, the potential for company failure can be high if the owner is a first-time business owner. Although widely disputed, some statistics suggest as high as 90 percent.

"There is a misconception that small-business owners are high risk-takers, but the research shows small-business owners are moderate risk-takers. They're not gamblers," Gatewood said.

First-time business owners fail largely because of the lack of managerial experience, Kessler said.

But if the company is at least five years old and has at least 20 to 25 employees, the risk is considerably reduced. In fact, 80 percent of all high-tech businesses succeed, Gatewood said.

Students who would like to learn

how to determine a company's general health may obtain a copy

of the Employer Research Guide at

the Career Planning and Placement Center.

 

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TECH LOSS DROPS LADY COUGARS TO 16TH IN AP

COUGAR SPORTS SERVICES

The Lady Cougars were handed their second straight loss by Texas Tech, 79-64, in Lubbock Saturday.

Houston (14-3) moved down five spots to number 16 in the AP Coaches' Poll, while Tech (14-2) moved up five to number 19.

The loss was the second poor showing in a row for the Lady Cougars. It was only the second time this season the Cougars have dropped below the 70-point mark, second only to the season-low 60 they scored against Stephen F. Austin Jan. 21.

The Lady Cougars' main problem of late has been poor shooting. They managed only a sparse 37 percent from the field, a minor improvement over the season-low 30 percent they shot against SFA.

The Cougars' two top scorers this season, post Darla Simpson and guard LaShawn Johnson, combined for only 14 points against the Red Raiders. Simpson's nine rebounds moved her ahead of former Cougar Sonya Watkins as the second highest rebounder in Cougar history.

The bright spot for the Cougars in the last two games has been the play of guard Cynthia Jackson. Jackson scored a personal high 24 points against Tech. She was the only Cougar to score in double figures.

Despite the recent slump, the Lady Cougars are still off to their best start in school history, equalling the 14-3 start of the 1988 women's team.

The Lady Cougars play Texas A&M next in Hofheinz Wednesday.

 

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SHAKESPEARE PIC; NOW YOU SEE IT, NOW YOU CANNOT

COUGAR NEWS SERVICE

Imagine solving a 220-year-old mystery only to have your treasure irretrievably stowed away.

That's what happened to St. Lawrence University art history Professor Martin Postle who has found the famous "Shakespeare Between Comedy and Tragedy" painting by Thomas Gainsborough, lost more than two centuries ago.

The problem is that Postle found the art work underneath another famous Gainsborough -- the artist's portrait of his son-in-law, musician Johann Christian Fischer.

Because the Fischer portrait is considered "one of Gainsborough's masterpieces," Shakespeare's image will remain trapped between canvas and the image of Fischer, according to Macreena Doyle, coordinator of news services at St. Lawrence.

The Shakespeare painting was discovered after six years of research by Postle, who serves as the deputy director of the Institute of European Studies in London, through use of an X-ray.

In 1985, when Postle was researching Gainsborough's contemporary, Sir Joshua Reynolds, he came across a book by W.S. Spanton, a professional copyist, who asserted that Gainsborough's Shakespeare painting was hidden underneath the Fischer portrait.

Postle pursued Spanton's theory and found, in letters written by Gainsborough in 1768, that the artist had painted "Shakespeare Between Comedy and Tragedy" for the famous Shakespearean actor David Garrick.

A few months later, Gainsbrough wrote of his trouble completing the painting, and in early 1774 -- the painting still unfinished and unpaid for by Garrick -- Postle theorizes that Gainsborough recycled the canvas by painting the Fischer portrait on top of the English playwright.

Postle was able to convince the National Gallery in London to allow him to X-ray the painting. The London Daily Mail reported the X-ray revealed Shakespeare standing on the right, gazing toward the sky with one arm outstretched holding a quill pen. In the center of the portrait is the kneeling figure of Comedy accompanied by an almost indistinguishable profile of Tragedy on the left.

Since the only way to retrieve the painting is to destroy the Fischer portrait, Shakespeare's image will remain hidden. The painting, part of the Royal Collection, will stay at the National Gallery in London.

 

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THE KIDDIE POOL, THEATER FOR AN ADULT-CHILD

BY GRAM GEMOETS

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

Michael Wilson's The Kiddie Pool is a surreal comedy set in the rural south in which a son battles his domineering mother on his journey into manhood.

Virgil, the son (Jason London), wants magic and adventure in a world totally controlled by his mother. As the typical southern matron, Penny (Sharon Madden) demands total devotion from both children. It is this demand that leads her daughter Lucretia (Maninda Bailey,) to run away from home.

The play starts with a prologue and ends with an epilogue. Each shows Virgil as an adult looking back at his painful childhood. The action encompasses his life from ages six through 19.

It is a dark comedy that mocks a dysfunctional family's antics, all of which seem quite normal to Penny.

For Virgil, growing up became a do or die situation. In order to survive, he escaped the brutal control of his overbearing mother through his imagination.

Rose (Robyn Lively) becomes Virgil's imaginary companion throughout his childhood. She is not able to communicate with any of the other players. Virgil and Rose escape through a dream world of their own, much like Mister Rogers' Land of Makebelieve.

Lucretia also feels she must escape the watchful eye of her mother inorder to gain maturity. She runs off with a carnival barker and becomes a topless dancer in a side show. She gets pregnant and returns home to get married.

The other characters in the play are as dysfunctional and strange as Penny, Virgil and Lucretia. This includes Lucretia's fiancee, Chester (James Black) and the family's nosy neighbor, Betty Sue.

The pool that serves as the central set in this drama holds the mattress of a waterbed. This makes for a very convenient prop. The various characters are able to lounge in the pool as the action unfolds.

The pool has several symbolic functions as well. It acts as a womb into which Virgil is able to seek refuge. More importantly, however, the pool serves as a symbolic river, a porthole from which the dead spirits of childhood arise.

The Kiddie Pool is a must-see performance for everyone over the age of 10. The play will run through Feb. 23 at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Neuhaus Arena Stage. There will be a pay-what-you-wish performance on Feb. 4.

 

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PRESIDENT SEEKS LEAVE-OF-ABSENCE FROM DUTIES

BY DEBBIE HOUSEL

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

UH President Marguerite Ross Barnett is asking the board of regents for a full medical leave-of-absence, effective immediately, UH officials said.

In a letter to the campus community today, Barnett states, "It has become clear to me that my treatment is requiring more of my time, strength and concentration than I ever imagined.

"I no longer believe that I can give my complete attention and energy to the full-time demands of my administration.

"Therefore, I have requested of (UH System) Chancellor (Alexander) Schilt and the board of regents to be placed on a full medical leave-of-absence through the balance of my treatment and recovery."

Associate Vice President for Media Relations Wendy Adair said Barnett's decision was prompted by the severity of her treatments for a neuroendocrinological illness.

"The reaction to her last round of treatments has caused her to miss two weeks and she is still gone," Adair said.

Adair said Barnett's leave-of-absence for treatments and recovery is expected to last through this academic year, which ends Aug. 31.

In her letter, Barnett recommended the board immediately appoint James Pickering as permanent senior vice president for academic affairs.

Pickering has been the interim senior vice president for academic affairs for the past year. This was the last top administrative office with an interim.

With Pickering's appointment, Barnett stated a full administrative team will be in place in her absence.

"She (Barnett) is a very heroic woman and a terrific leader. In many ways, she has made us better than ourselves because she continuously challenges us. We will really miss her in her absence," Pickering said.

In Barnett's absence, the university will not have to maintain a holding pattern because of the projects Barnett started, he said.

"Things will be different, but I don't think we will lose momentum," Pickering said.

The faculty have expressed concern over who would be second-in- command during Barnett's absence.

Pickering said with absolute clarity that the senior vice president for academic affairs will be second-in-command.

"It's the tradition of this university and what everyone wants. We're about education and so it is appropriate for the person in this position to be the number-two person."

The board of regents is holding an emergency meeting today at 1:30 p.m. to confirm Barnett's leave-of- absence and Pickering's appointment.

Adair said Schilt will advise the regents on who, if anyone, will be the acting president in Barnett's absence.

Adair said Barnett has cancelled her commitments this semester and will not be present at today's board of regents meeting.

 

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