by Scott Sparks

It always seems that <B>Prince<P> leads the way with the new in music and marketing, and his new single, "The Most Beautiful Girl In The World", seems to be no exception.

If you want a copy of the single CD or remixes, you must call 1-800-NEW-FUNK. This will be the only way you can buy the record for the next couple of weeks.

It has been widely written that Prince is unhappy with the way Warner Brothers Records has been handling his record releases in the United States. This may seem surprising since Prince signed a $100 million deal with the company just last year.

Keep in mind that recording contracts are often based on what the artist <I>should<P> achieve but many times the figures are blown way out of proportion. Nonetheless, you would think that Prince would be happy, but noooo! His dissatisfaction may be the reason that he has changed his name a couple of times throughout the past year.

The success of this new marketing move may depend on whether other artists decide to do the same and by-pass record companies entirely.

Miscellaneous: It's been about two years, but <B>The Smithereens<P> are about to release their fifth album, <I>A Date With The Smithereens.<P> April 26 is the scheduled date for release ...They have taken four years to make it happen, but <B>Motley Crue<P> will finally release their long awaited self titled CD March 15. The new lead singer for the Crue is ex-<B>Scream<P> frontman <B>John Corabi<P>. It will be interesting to see if they will be able to achieve the massive success they once enjoyed ...You may laugh when your parents tell you how great <B>Neil Diamond<P> is but he is the most popular act on the road right now. According to <I>Pollstar<P> magazine his average gross per show is a cool $900,000 ... Another soundtrack that you should be on the look out for is entitled <I>With Honors.<P> Madonna will have a new single on the soundtrack along with <B>Duran Duran<P>, <B>Belly<P>, and <B>The Pretenders<P>.

After 30 years and a dozen different members Exile is calling it quits ... One of the better rumors I keep hearing is a co-billed tour of <B>Elton John<P> and <B>Billy Joel<P>. The dueling piano players would hit stadiums throughout the summer ... Speaking of summer, both <B>Jethro Tull<P> and <B>Steely Dan<P> will hit the road separately. They both enjoyed wide success on their respective tours last summer ....

It seems alternative music is finding a home on many of this year's soundtracks. Case in point. <I>The Crow.<P> New music from <B>Stone Temple Pilots<P> and contributions from <B>The Cure<P>, <B>Nine Inch Nails<P>, and <B>Helmet<P> are expected when the CD hits the stores later in March.

Happy Birthdays This Week: <B>Neal Schon<P> (Journey & Bad English), 40; <B>Cindy Wilson<P> (B-52's), 37; <B>Roger Daltrey<P> (The Who), 50; <B>George Benson<P>, 51; Eddie Money, 45; <B>John Bon Jovi<P>, 32; <B>Billy Gibbons<P> (ZZ Top), 44; and <B>Mary Wilson<P> (The Supremes), 50.






by Robert James

News Reporter

Engineering students may benefit from renovations made at the Engineering Computer Center, which will facilitate operation of high-tech equipment in a more modern facility.

The computer lab, which is open only to engineering students, contains Vax, IBM AT, NEXTstep, Windows NT and Macintosh computers. The Vax and IBM computers will be phased out of usage at the site.

The lab, originally called the W.M. Keck Computer Aided Teaching Center, was established in 1984 with the financial assistance of the Keck Foundation.

Director of Engineering Computing John Glover said the renovations were needed to help with security of the site and to support the curriculum of the college.

"Originally the lab consisted of classrooms separated by a hallway," Dr. Glover said. "This was a problem because half of the computers were on one side and half were on the other. It was easier for valuable equipment to be stolen under that arrangement.

"The renovations will give us a single room with one exit and entrance. This along with the windows that will be installed on the classrooms will help prevent theft," he said.

Glover also said changes in curriculum, mainly the new ENGI 1331 and 2331 class requirements, make the addition of lab rooms necessary.

Glover said the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology made the recommendation last semester that more computers be added and that remodeling be done.

George Creighton manager of the computer lab, said scheduled renovations include carpet, moving doors, windows and white boards inside individual rooms and a security system.

He also said a new unix workstation room and a training room for short non-credit courses are scheduled additions.

"Within the past year 60 Gateway 486 computers costing $3,000 each and six MacIntosh Quadra computers costing $2,500 each, have been added to the computer center," Creighton said.

He also said the renovations, which cost $219,000, are expected to be completed by August 1994.

"$197,000 of the total funding amount was received from the Higher Education Assistance Fund," said Creighton. "Some funds were also received from the $75 equipment access fee that is paid by engineering students enrolled in at least three hours."

Thuy Nguyen, a supervisor at the lab, said about 400 students use the computers and equipment each day.

"During events like Cougar Preview we will be able to allow students to come in and see the lab as well as work on some of the computers. That alone will attract more students to our college and to the university," Glover said.

Students are also looking forward to the conveniences that made possible due to the renovations.

Brad Huehlefeld, a sophomore civil engineering student said, "It is good that they are changing things. It will be easier to do our work, especially with the addition of more computers. We won't have to wait in lines to use the machines."





Opposites attract despite cultural differences

by Rashda Khan

Contributing Writer

Very few people know of the existence of a field of study called social psychology. One of the issues covered in this field is what predisposes people to love one another.

Recent research indicates that "like attracts like." Professor Garner, social psychology professor said that most people choose partners with whom they share common traits such as race, ethnicity, culture, religion, ideals, opinions and attitudes.

However, in a country as diverse as America, relationships develop that seem to prove true the old adage "opposites attract."

Eric Moya, a junior English major, who has had some inter-cultural dating experience, said there are pros and cons to this dating situation.

"Society tends to look down on inter-cultural or inter-racial couples," Moya said. "People hold stereotypes and often feel that a person from outside the culture isn't appropriate."

Moya said that this often creates a lot of negative pressure from friends and families. He also said that since people come from different backgrounds they have different expectations.

"On the other hand," he said, "intercultural relationships can open up another way of life for you."

Mark Harper, accounting senior, and Estella Harper are another couple with different backgrounds, but still in love. He is British and she is from El Salvador. They met at work in a bank.

"There are differences, but the key word is compromise," Estella said. "As for family, his parents, I suppose western parents in general, give more freedom to choose. My parents, they prefer making decisions."

Mark said that often communication problems compounded any problems they have.

Vivian Ludan, a biochem sophomore and Josh Willis, a physics sophomore have been dating for 11 months. She is Phillipino in origin and he is a Texan. They met at the UH Honors Retreat and Josh went to New York where Vivian's parents live. He was exposed to Vivian's culture when he tasted Phillipino food and heard the language.

"None of our parents object or have any problems with intercultural relationships," Ludan said .

Communities all around the United States celebrate the diversity that makes up America. These couples celebrate the uniqueness of America every day through their love.







by Sharon Simien

News Reporter

After 20 years of trade negotiations with Japan and some 30 trade agreements, there is a growing consensus accepting the Japanese government's standard promises for opening its markets.

The United States and Japan are in a deadlock in the trade talks. Sectors being covered in negotiations are: access to Japan's insurance markets, autos, auto parts, telecommunications, medical equipment and other sectors that would include numerical goals for increasing access to Japan's market.

Brian Mahler, chief of economics in Washington, said, "The numerical indictors are the key stumbling blocks. Japanese officials denounced such quantitative measures as an American tool to set specific import targets for different sectors of the Japanese economy which they feel is managing trade between the two countries."

In the past, negotiations have been rescued in a series of last-minute, all-night sessions that produce a fuzzily-worded document allowing both sides to declare victory.

The United States has reasons to stand firm on the issue of numerical targets. Throughout history, Japanese government officials have caved in under American pressure instead of facing sanctions or putting a strain on relations with its main ally and trading partner.

Andrew Quinn, specialist in the Office of Japanese Affairs, Washington, said, "If there is no agreement reached, Japan faces an additional threat that the yen is likely to rise again, choking the nation's automobile and electronics exports."

Japan is currently having political trouble. A Japanese advisor of foreign trade in Washington, D.C., referring to Japanese infrastructure, said, "There is some trouble but it is not serious. At one time there was one administrative party, now there is a coalition of four or five parties that have different opinions. It is the opinions that cause problems." When asked if Japan is in a recession, Hiroshima said yes but had no comment when asked the question why?

Twenty years of accepting general promises from Tokyo has produced a trade deficit with Japan that has soared by 20 percent in the past year, nearing $60 billion.

The trade official said, "My Government is not worried that failure to agree to numerical goals would rupture bilateral relations, the United States-Japan relationship is not that fragile that it would collapse over that single problem."

Talks collapsed after a meeting between President Clinton and Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa resulted in a failure to resolve differences. President Clinton reacted by mentioning the possibility of using other measures to force Japan to open markets.







by Jason Paul Ramirez

Daily Cougar Staff

The Houston Cougars have nothing more to gain as far as Southwest Conference Tournament seedings go.

But they will still have unfinished business with the Rice Owls when the two meet at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

Houston (7-18 overall, 4-9 in the SWC) comes into its final regular-season game at Hofheinz Pavilion looking to sweep the season series from Rice (14-12, 6-7).

"To sweep Rice would be a good thing for us," said Houston head coach Alvin Brooks. "Especially since they did it to us last year."

Cougar senior guard Anthony Goldwire led a ferocious rally that sealed the first win over Rice, 69-67, in Autry Court on Feb. 5.

Houston trailed the Owls 61-48 with just over five minutes left to play before Goldwire took over, hitting some key buckets down the stretch.

Unfortunately for Houston, Goldwire is in the midst of a mini two-game slump in which he has shot a disappointing 1-of-8 from the floor against both Texas and Lamar.

Nevertheless, the Cougars victory over the Owls ended a record 13-game losing streak and it has been a pivotal turn in Houston's recent success.

UH has won four of its last six games and has gone 3-3 in the SWC since its victory at Autry.

"Our next game versus Rice is crucial," Houston junior guard Lloyd Wiles said. "We're trying to get ready to win the tournament."

Houston can clinch the No. 6 seed in the tourney with a win and will play Texas Tech (9-4 SWC) as the third seed in the first round should Texas A&M (10-3) defeat the Red Raiders in College Station this weekend.

In order to clinch the seeding, Houston will have to contend with the hot shooting of Rice senior forward Torrey Andrews, who is coming of an impressive 24-point outing against SWC-leader Texas.

"They (Owls) try to always get Andrews to touch the ball," said Brooks. "We know what they're going to do."

Rice and Baylor (6-7 SWC) have already clinched either the fourth or fifth seed in the tournament. If both the Bears and the Owls win or both lose, Rice would win the tie-breaker and gain the fourth seed. Baylor would be seeded fifth, having lost both meetings to the Owls this season.

Baylor hosts Southern Methodist on Saturday.

But no matter what happens, Rice and Baylor are assured of meeting in the first round next week.

It may sound confusing, but all the unfinished business is not far from being completed.






by William German

Daily Cougar Staff

It's up to the Lady Cougars to decide how much momentum they will have to start the upcoming Southwest Conference Tournament.

When they face Rice (12-13, 4-9 in the SWC) 2 p.m. Saturday at Autry Court, the Cougars (11-13, 5-8) will be trying to avoid a tie in conference records with Rice and possibly Baylor, but the point would be moot because Houston would win all tiebreakers.

As the No. 5 seed, Houston will face No. 4 Southern Methodist in the first round.

"It doesn't matter," head coach Jessie Kenlaw said about the choice of opponents. "We don't have a choice about it, so we'll just wait and see and make preparations based on (the other team's) personnel."

Rice head coach Christy McKinney echoed those sentiments, saying "I don't care," when asked about who she would prefer playing.

If both Rice and Baylor lose, the Owls will have the seventh seed and play Texas A&M. If Rice wins and Baylor loses, Texas will be the Owls opponent.

In the first meeting of the two teams this year on Feb. 5, UH thrashed Rice 71-51 to start off a fine stretch of play in which it won four of five conference games.

This time, things figure to be different.

"The last time we played UH was the first game after we lost (senior guard Marsha) Frese," McKinney said. "Our guards didn't play with confidence, because they were playing without someone who plays 30 minutes a game."

Frese, who was averaging 8.8 points and 4.1 rebounds a game, blew out her knee against Texas on Feb. 2, ending her collegiate career.

Rice has other weapons, including 6-2 junior center Brenda Conaway (13.6 ppg, 8.1 rpg) and sophomore Tammy McCallum (9.2 ppg, 7.5 rpg), the little sister of Raiders running back Napoleon McCallum.

"Rice is an up-and-down team," Kenlaw said. "On a given night, they can be explosive."






by Chris Pena

Daily Cougar Staff

Growing up in Bogota, Colombia, Cougar center Rafael Carrasco dreamed of playing on the clay courts of the French Open, not the hardcourts of the Southwestern Conference.

Instead of idolizing Larry Bird or Magic Johnson, Carrasco admired tennis star Boris Becker.

But the 6-9 senior co-captain's aspirations quickly changed when he was given the opportunity to play and study at UH.

Traveling to another continent for college was traumatic enough, but Carrasco also faced the daunting task of playing basketball at the highest level of non-professional athletics in the world.

During his freshman year, Carrasco had his doubts about his overseas venture.

"I thought about quitting my first year," he said. "But if I had quit, I would've missed the times I've had here."

Those times have truly been wonderful for Carrasco.

He is a business major with a 3.25 grade point average, and he has been a member of the GTE All-Southwest Conference academic team.

He has also started every game for the Cougars this year and is averaging 7.2 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.

What is amazing is that Carrasco did not start playing the game until he was 15.

At that time, Eric Habegger, a teacher at the private bilingual high school he was attending, saw that the boy who wanted to serve and volley had the height and potential to dunk and shoot.

By the time Carrasco was a senior, he had developed his game well enough to warrant a legitimate chance to play in the U.S.

Habegger and Marcus Loganbill, another teacher at the school, went to work on the marketing of Rafael Carrasco, Division I basketball player.

"They made tapes of me playing and sent them to a bunch of schools," Carrasco said.

The choice to attend UH was hard for Carrasco because he knew that the cultural changes would be difficult.

But the opportunities available outweighed the negatives.

Although Carrasco will graduate in May with a degree in business, he doesn't plan to jump into the wonderful world of business just yet.

"I want to go to Spain and try to play pro over there," he said. "The transition won't be that hard, because I already speak Spanish and I've already left home before."

What should help Carrasco in his bid for a professional career is he is the hardest working player on the court, whether it is practice or the SWC Tournament.

"The other day in practice I dislocated my finger," he said. "But I just went to the trainer and had him put it back in place. I don't know why, but pain gives me a rush."

Carrasco also has a tremendous rapport with the players on the team.

"I try to lead by example," he said. "I don't know of any guy on the team that I don't get along with."

Carrasco's odyssey has given him some sense of achievement.

"I'm satisfied with myself," he said. "Because not only are there not many Colombians playing basketball, but there aren't many Americans that are playing on the same level as me."

Carrasco is positive about the future of UH basketball under head coach Alvin Brooks.

"Brooks has great potential for a good program," he said. "The team has a great base, and he's going to have a hell of a team."

Unfortunately, Carrasco will not be here for the revival of UH basketball after a disappointing 1993-94 season. But he knows he has left an indelible mark on the program.

"Every time I leave the floor, I can say that I left my guts on the court," he said. "I know that I did my best, and if we lost, it was because the other team played better than us."

Visit The Daily Cougar