SA VOTES DOWN PLAN FOR OB HONORS COLLEGE

by Tanya Eiserer

Daily Cougar Staff

The Students' Association Senate almost unanimously supported a resolution opposing the moving of the Honors College to Oberholtzer Hall.

"There are too many things that need to be looked at. We need to let them (the Facilities and Planning Committee) know what the students think," said Clarissa Peterson, a social sciences senator and one of the resolution's authors.

The conflict arose because the Exxon Corp., which has given UH $870,000 to start a Scholars Community program, wants to relocate this program into the basement of M.D. Anderson Library, where the Honors College is currently located.

Recently, the Residence Halls Association held a referendum among residents to determine students' reactions to the proposal. Out of 328 respondents, 242 opposed the proposal and 86 supported it.

Another survey of 61 students in the Honors College found 42 opposing and 19 supporting the proposal.

Peterson said the move will cause massive relocations because the Honors College will have to move into the space currently occupied by Residential Life and Housing, which would then have to find a place on campus.

Moving the Residential Life administrative staff will cost about $145,000. The cost of renovating Oberholtzer is unknown except that it will be expensive.

Students will pay for the renovation costs, Peterson said.

"The relocation will raise the cost of living for every resident by about $500 for every student," Peterson said.

The plan would actually raise rent by $422 per student this year and $355 per student the next year.

SA President Angie Milner also voiced her opposition to the proposed plan.

"They get a place on campus because they are giving a lot of money," Milner said.

Peterson said the disadvantages to the plan outweigh its advantages.

According to the plan, the move will cost the university about $663,260 in lost revenue. Some rooms will no longer be available for summer guests or year-round residents. Additionally, the ballroom would no longer be available.

"Every fall, students are turned away for housing. I myself was denied. It would be a little bit ridiculous if UH cut out more housing by taking away what little housing there is," said James Cabe, a senator from the college of engineering.

Peterson said there are other locations on campus that need to be looked at before any decisions are made.

After senators voted to accept the Honors College resolution, they moved on to debate about possible university plans to create a Jewish Studies Department.

Eric Bishop, a senator from the college of education, said some students want to take courses in Jewish studies and that plans are already in the works to try to get the university to approve the proposal.

After some discussion, the Senate decided to send the resolution to the Academic Affairs Committee.

Director of External Affairs Keith Peel said that with the new legislative session starting soon, they are laying the groundwork for letting legislators know UH's needs.

Peel said the present performance formulas need to be changed because the formulas are geared for four-year traditional universities, not an urban commuter college like UH.

Last year, the Senate passed a bill mandating that senators have to hold a certain number of town hall meetings.

"Just about every college has had a town hall meeting. For the first time in about a year, the Senate has been active," said Jeff Fuller, speaker of the Senate.

 

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SOUTH AFRICA: REBIRTH

by Tiffany Vaughner

Daily Cougar Staff

The recent elections were only the beginning of the struggle in South Africa, said some UH students and faculty who joined together on two panels to discuss the post-election climate in South Africa.

Although views about how the election would affect the country varied, all agreed this was the beginning of an important new era in history.

History Professor Ime Ukpanah said while some South African whites were anxious about the changes occurring in their country, blacks remained optimistic.

"The whites are already afraid and well they should be. They feel that to be taxed very heavily would hurt the economy. In other words funds would be transferred from one area to the other. The fear is there. But on a brighter note, when some people were asked and some out-poll was conducted ... the question was, 'If the government failed to deliver, would you take to the streets?' Only about 20 percent said yes, most said no," Ukpanah said.

He said blacks should not lower their expectations of the new government, but modify those expectations to the reality of not only dismantling a political system of segregation, but of a way of thinking.

The panel discussions, titled, "Freedom in South Africa: The Road From the Election," were sponsored by Alpha Kappa Delta and the Students' Association for Social Sciences.

The first panel featured UH history Professor and moderator Thomas O'Brien, communications Professor Garth Jowett, Ukpanah and economics Professor Thomas DeGregori.

The second panel featured UH students Walter Cole and Michael Chamberlain. Other panelists were Rice University graduate student and member of the African American Congress Maurice Magugumela and Jerry Freiwirth, a member of the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Worker's Union Local 4-367.

The faculty panel started by giving individual perspectives on South Africa.

Jowett, a native of Cape Town, had more of a personal take on the problems facing that country. He talked about growing up in a racially mixed neighborhood and not being able to play with the "colored" children even though they were the only children to play with. He said what many people don't realize is that apartheid affected whites as well as other groups.

"In 1953 when I was 13 years old, the government passed what was called the Group Areas Act. Apartheid affected whites as much as it affected others. My family was told that it had to move. The neighborhood that I grew up in had now been declared a colored neighborhood. I had personally never gotten over the fact that the government was telling me who my friends should be," Jowett said.

The student panel began by giving its opinions on what course of action would best suit South Africa.

Magugumela reminded the audience that the elections were only the beginning of the struggle in South Africa.

"Democracy doesn't end with the vote. The success for democracy should be measured against the quality of life for ordinary people. And so to protect the way South Africa is today, we must remember we still have a long way to go.

"We look at the black communities' official statistics; our unemployment rate is in excess of 50 percent and our universities in excess of 60 percent ... I don't want to talk about housing because it's so painful. Really, we have a long way to go and the new government is very much qualified to take over this project, and I think in the long run they will succeed in doing so," Magugumela said.

 

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JUMPING FOR THE STARS

Long-jumper/sprinter finds the right stride at UH; future wide open for Fields

by Daniel Scholl

Daily Cougar Staff

Sheddric Fields has been referred to by some as the next Carl Lewis.

Maybe it's the fact that they both compete in the same events. Or maybe it's the promising future that lays ahead of Fields.

Coming out of high school, Fields was the top recruit in the nation. In 1992, he was named the Gatorade Circle of Champions National High School Track and Field Athlete of the Year. He was also invited to the U.S. Olympic Trials in the long jump.

That year he had the longest jump in the nation with a leap of 25 feet, 11 1/2 inches.

Last season was his first with the Cougars, but he did not live up to his expectations.

"I've seen a lot of people come out of high school that were ranked the top high school athlete and get to college and you don't hear much about them," he said. "I was determined not to be one of those athletes.

"The first year, when things were going bad, I started getting down, but I kept working because I knew I could do it."

His coaches knew it too. Because he was learning a new style of running and jumping, they were not discouraged. They knew he would come into his own. They were right.

This season he has automatically qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the long jump with a mark of 26-7 1/4, which he recorded at the Carl Lewis Relays, the first outdoor meet of the season.

He also qualified in the 100-meter dash at the same meet with a time of 10.32 seconds, and his 400-meter relay team is going to the NCAAs in Boise, Idaho.

At the Southwest Conference Championships, he finished first in the long jump, third in the 100 and the relay team came in first.

So what has been the major difference between this season and last?

"Last year, in jumping and running, I ran differently than the way they teach here," Fields said. "Last year was just the whole process of learning the correct way of running.

"It took a lot of time, but I hung with it and now everything is starting to flow like it was natural."

It was at the Carl Lewis Relays where everything started to flow.

"I had all the pieces, but I just wasn't putting them together," he said. "I had the speed, but I just wasn't carrying it into my jumping.

"At the Carl Lewis Relays, since it was my first outdoor meet, I kind of just experimented with it and everything clicked. The key thing was running faster."

This allowed him to carry more momentum into his jump.

Fields said jumping is what he wants to concentrate on, but his running events are drawing attention as well.

Last weekend at the Drake Relays, he ran on the 400- and 800-meter relay teams, the only ones the Cougars sent. The 400 team won and the 800 finished second.

With the SWC season over, it is time to look to the future. This may mean more than the nationals. It could mean the Olympics.

"I have a good shot (of making the Olympic team in the long jump)," he said, "if Carl (Lewis) is not jumping and Mike Powell's not. I should have a chance to be in the top three as long as I'm doing everything right."

The fact that he may be competing against Lewis is ironic because Lewis coaches and trains Fields. This is one of the reasons why he came to UH.

"In high school, I knew if I wanted to be one of the best, I needed to train with the best people I could train with," he said. "This is the only place where you had this many people that are world-ranked like they are that I could train with and jump with.

"I felt this was the place for me to come as far as track was concerned."

Fields said Lewis has helped him to become the athlete he is now. Lewis is very optimistic of Fields' future.

"I think his progress is coming along well," Lewis said. "He understands what he has to do and that is the biggest thing. I believe he is going to do a great job in the next three years."

When asked about the comparison between the two, Lewis said, "I would hope so. I had a lot of success here and he's going to have a lot of success too. But more than that, I hope he does the best Sheddric can do.

"I think people will be cloned after him by the time he is finished."

 

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PREP CENTERS GREAT FOR GRADS

by Christian Messa

News Reporter

The task of navigating the road to graduate school is an arduous one, but there are testing services in Houston that help students pass the required entrance exams.

The Stanley H. Kaplan Educational Centers, located in Sharpstown, the Rice Village and six satellite locations throughout Houston, help students prepare for these tests. The tests include the Graduate Record Examination and the Law School Admissions Test.

Sara Turner, pre-college marketing manager at the 5925 Kirby Dr. Kaplan Center, said the GRE and LSAT courses cost $695 and $745 respectively, but students can start payment plans that cater to different student needs.

"We do offer tuition assistance," she said.

Turner said the testing costs include classes, books and testing materials. These costs can be reduced "based on (the student's) needs."

A student must be interviewed to determine how much can be deducted from the course costs, she added.

Tests are given several times during the year, although each test center has its own schedule.

The GRE will be administered June 4 and Oct. 8 at the Kirby location. Classes will be held between the two dates to help prepare the students for the tests.

Turner said the Kaplan centers help students strive to reach a certain score. If the students do not reach that goal, they can take the course again at no cost, she said.

With the time it takes to pass out test materials and the breaks allotted during the testing, Turner said the GRE testing session lasts about four hours.

Once the student makes the desired test score, it must be sent to the appropriate graduate school, where it becomes just one segment of the admissions process.

UH's Creative Writing Program is one example.

Steve Stark, program administrator for the UH Creative Writing Program, said several things are evaluated if a student wants to get into "one of the most competitive creative writing departments in the country."

First of all, the admissions committee reviews a student's creative manuscript and statement of interest. The appropriate faculty make the necessary observations.

For example, the poetry faculty will review all poetry submitted.

The application is then sent to the English Department, where GRE scores and grade point averages are considered.

Stark said there are one or two creative writing faculty members who will help the English Department make the decision to admit a student into the graduate program.

He said students apply for the graduate program because the creative writing job market is very small, and students return to school to learn more.

Students get the chance to write, Stark said, and the program places them in workshops in which work is criticized by others.

These students can see the mistakes made by others and can therefore avoid making the same mistakes themselves, he said.

 

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BUTEAUX-BALL FAR FROM FINISHED

UH slugger, pitcher hopes for more diamond success in majors

 

by Chris Peña

Daily Cougar Staff

Shane Buteaux knows what it is like to live in someone else's shadow.

Growing up in New Iberia, La., the 6-4, 200-pound all-Southwest Conference right fielder/reliever had a problem leaving his own mark.

First he played football, but no matter how well he performed, he could never be as good as his older brother, who happened to be an all-state selection.

So Buteaux played basketball. Another sport, another brother's all-state credentials to surpass.

But the older Buteaux siblings never cared much for baseball, and that's where their little brother has made quite a name for himself.

Buteaux had a spectacular senior year for the Cougars, batting .381, with 77 hits, 12 home runs and 56 RBIs.

In addition, Buteaux was 6-3 on the mound with five saves.

Some major league scouts expect him to get drafted this summer.

"It's nice to get the recognition," Buteaux said. "But I would have traded all of it for some team recognition."

Unfortunately, the Cougars once again finished at the bottom of the SWC standings in 1994.

"We had high hopes at the start of the season," Buteaux said. "This team had great potential."

Now it is just Buteaux that has high hopes and the potential to advance in professional baseball.

Although he had always been an outfielder throughout his baseball career, Buteaux pitched for the first time in the season opener against Texas Lutheran, picking up his first-ever save in the process.

His fastball, which has been clocked in the low to mid-90s, has caught the attention of many major league teams.

"A guy that can bring it like that is bound to be a pitcher," said Atlanta Braves scout Ralph Carr.

Buteaux knows his days of roaming the outfield are essentially over.

"I know I'm probably going to go (in the draft) as a pitcher," he said. "But I don't mind. I really prefer to go the quickest way possible."

Buteaux is still adapting to the intricacies of pitching.

"I'm getting comfortable on the mound now," he said. "I realize it's more than throwing. When I started pitching this year, I was just throwing fastballs, but now I know to throw the change-up to freeze the batter."

None of Buteaux's accomplishments has been lost on Cougar head coach Bragg Stockton.

"Shane has established himself as one of the premier players in the nation," Stockton said. "He is a leader, a tough competitor and a totally committed ball player."

Commitment and hard work are something Buteaux takes pride in.

During the season, Buteaux was usually one of the last guys to leave the field because he was always working on his pitching with Stockton or taking extra cuts in the batting cage.

But with all of his personal glory, Buteaux credits his teammates for their help.

"Carlos Perez's work ethic pushes me tremendously," he said. "And Ricky Freeman helps me keep a clean frame of mind."

Buteaux is aware that pitching is not everything.

"My arm may be my greatest asset, but my attitude is my greatest strength," Buteaux said. "I just will not be intimidated by anyone.

"When guys stare me down, it makes me want to beat them even more. I never want anybody to say that I wasn't good enough."

Buteaux, a two-time SWC Player of the Week, is a semi-finalist for the Bob Smith Award and the Dick Howser Trophy. Both honor achievement in college baseball.

"Shane deserves every high honor that is available to a collegiate ball player," Stockton said.

For all the accolades he has received and is eligible to receive, it seems that Shane Buteaux can live without baseball.

"If your worst problem is losing baseball games, then you've got some bigger things to worry about."

 

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'CRUITERS LEND A HELPING HAND

by Chris Peña

Daily Cougar Staff

Although you may have never heard of them, the Cougar 'Cruiters are back for their second season as the goodwill ambassadors of UH football.

The organization was started last year by head football coach Kim Helton as a means to get students more involved in the football program.

"They will act as student representatives for official and unofficial recruiting visits," said Helton's wife Pam, who will be assisting the organization for the second year in a row.

Mrs. Helton said that although the co-ed organization is new to UH, it is a commonplace tradition at many other universities.

The 1994-95 edition of the Cougar 'Cruiters consists of 29 UH students.

Members were selected based on interpersonal skills, academic standing, maturity, leadership ability and knowledge of the University of Houston.

"We're very excited about this year," Mrs. Helton said. "The group is very diverse, and we hope they will be more visible this season."

'Cruiters' duties include assisting with recruiting weekends, home football games, pre-game functions and overall promotion of UH football.

"Last year, the 'Cruiters helped out with our pre-game warm-up party at the Astrodome," Mrs. Helton added. "The party enabled the players' parents to get to know each other better."

Although it's too late to join the organization this year, don't forget that if you want to get involved in UH football, the spring of 1995 is right around the corner.

 

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ATHLETICS CAN STILL CRAWL OUT OF DARKNESS

by Daniel Scholl

Daily Cougar Staff

Wow! My first sports column and what a day to write it.

All week I had been planning to write about where I thought UH athletics is and where it is headed. Suddenly, that seems like a very pertinent issue.

Ever since the allegations of running up the score against Southern Methodist in 1989, the Athletic Department (because we live in Texas, this must be read as football) seems to have suffered one slap in the face after another.

Through the dark days of the Jenkins era came a new Athletic Department. A new athletic director and new football and men's basketball coaches seemed to put the department in the right direction.

Both Kim Helton and Alvin Brooks came in to clean up the mess that was left in their hands and quite frankly, they've done a pretty good job.

This school year may be the worst ever for the Cougar faithful. We were last in football and baseball and sixth in men's basketball. These are the Big Three and we just didn't perform.

But that's not important right now. Helton and Brooks are men concerned with building a program first. This is exactly what UH needs.

For the last five years, Cougar football has dealt with coming off probation, allegations of improper activity under Jenkins and humiliation at the hands of Miami and Michigan in front of national television audiences. Plus there was all the flack about the "Run-It-Up-and-Shoot," which later became the "Run-and-Shoot-Yourself-in-the-Foot."

But all that was put in the past. Carr, Helton and Brooks pledged to stay focused only on the future. All was well with athletics again.

Until that day, the day when the Southwest Conference put itself to bed.

Here were the Cougars, finally finding their way through the jungle to an oasis created by Carr, Helton and Brooks.

It will be known as the day that changed UH athletics forever: a school without a place to play. The future was now.

Or was it? Carr says UH has three to five years before any changes need to be made. I hope he's right, but I don't think so.

The Cougar brain trust, Carr and UH President James Pickering, have waited too long. The school is not acting or reacting. It's just sitting there.

Or maybe they're not. Perhaps they have some great plan that will make all right again. If they do, I think it is time to let the press in on it. At the very least, this will end suspicion that UH is sitting on its hands, waiting for something to happen.

And if they are waiting for the Big Eight or Southeastern Conference to come calling, pack a lunch because it is going to be a long wait.

Why not go Metro? Traditionally, the Cougar strength lies in basketball – The "Big E," "The Dream," "Clyde the Glide." These are names that still mean something. Don't believe me? Why then does Brooks have one of the top recruiting classes in the country?

As if it wasn't enough that UH is the only former SWC school without a playground, the Cougars may or may not have to deal with what may or may not be another scandal.

The real question about David Roberts' grade change is not if there was any wrongdoing. It's just more bad press – the one thing the Athletic Department doesn't need.

Well, that is the state of the Cougars. They weathered the initial storm well and seemed to be building toward a class program. Then the SWC break-up stood in their way. Now every little thing will be magnified until stability is restored. This will come in the form of a new conference. They handled the first storm well. Let's see how they handle the next.

 

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SMOKESCREEN MAY BE CLEARING FOR UH

by Adam King

Daily Cougar Staff

With all the speculation about which conference affiliation Houston is seeking, a recent visit by a Great Midwest Conference official could clear out some of the smoke.

Mike Slive, commissioner of the GMC, was on campus April 27 to meet with Cougar athletic director Bill Carr after consulting with Prime Network about a possible television package involving his conference.

Carr acknowledged he met Slive, but wouldn't confirm they had any discussions involving Houston joining the Great Midwest, which has Cincinnati and the University of Memphis (formerly Memphis State) as basketball members that compete as football independents.

"Mr. Slive and I have known each other a long time," Carr said. "He came by to see me and we talked. Certainly he was here, but I can't comment on what the discussions were. I can't comment on an individual situation."

Slive was given a tour of the ongoing construction to build UH's $26 million athletic complex and was reportedly impressed with the direction Houston is headed.

Metro Conference consultant Dick Schultz has also been on campus to visit with Carr. The former NCAA executive director was hired by the Metro to build a football program in the conference.

Southern Mississippi, Louisville and Tulane are football independents and Metro basketball participants. Both the Metro and Great Midwest are interested in adding football – an almost certain requirement to compete in a newly aligned Division I of superconferences.

Carr again has refused to comment on anything that might have been discussed.

"We're not trying to be coy," he said. "We're simply trying to be consistent in our approach or reluctance or refusal to comment on (the situation).

"That's the best thing for us to do. I know that UH has a future in Division I-A athletics. What is necessary to be successful in the industry can be brought to bear here."

Carr has said UH may take three to five years to find a home, but hinted the situation could be brought to a head much sooner.

"The longer the time period is, the more complex it is for us," he said.

The mere fact that Slive and Schultz were on campus means Houston is, at the very least, interested in the prospect of joining one or a combination of the conferences.

Now that the other Southwest Conference schools have found a home – Texas, Texas A&M, Baylor and Texas Tech to the Big Eight and Rice, Texas Christian and Southern Methodist to the Western Athletic Conference – and have no reason to keep the SWC breathing, Houston is under more pressure to decide its future.

"This move to the WAC affects us in terms of scheduling and years in 1995 through '96," Carr said. "How many of those teams will be playing? The first issue to address is: When will competition actually end?

"I don't think we'll compete in (Southwest Conference) basketball for more than one season."

The Metro and Great Midwest offer competitive basketball. Cincinnati and Louisville were NCAA Tournament teams this year, and the Bearcats were a Final Four team in 1993.

Head basketball coach Alvin Brooks is looking forward to any move Houston makes.

"We need to be proactive," he said. "We've got to align ourselves with some very strong institutions. We will be ready to move."

Brooks added that he likes the notion of UH in the Big Eight, although that possibility seems out of reach at the moment.

Nevertheless, Brooks isn't worried about Houston's future.

"We've always gone a step up in our history," he said.

 

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GINN A SHELL OF OLD SELF ON NEW EP

by D. McAdams

Daily Cougar Staff

Oh how the mighty have fallen! Once an awesome, kick-ass guitarist for a band that meant something (Black Flag), now a has-been, wash-up putting out stale techno Alan Jourgensen did back when Ministry put out <I>Twitch<P>.

The best way to describe Greg Ginn's CD single, <I>Don't Tell Me<P>, is tedious, tiresome and should be put out of its misery.

The title track is just a little bit (emphasis on little) short of embarrassing. The CD's one redeeming quality is "Yes Officer." It's a story of a guy who is harassed by police officers and how he wants to get even. Lyrically, the song strikes a chord with anyone who thinks police officers are little more than modern-day SS officers. Musically, the song annoys to no end.

But "Yes Officer" is sheer brilliance to the lame "You're Gonna Get it in The End." The lyrics to the song? "You're gonna get it in the end" (repeat until your brain turns to warm Jello).

If one didn't know better, one might suspect this release was someone's idea of a bad joke. Would it were so.

 

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CHECK OUT SOME MOVIES WITH MOM

by Glenn R. Wilson Jr.

In the Can

This Sunday, Americans everywhere will observe a special day in which we pay tribute to the one person we really owe our very existence: Mom.

Not wishing to let the occasion go by untouched, I have come up with a film festival design to allow quality time between you, Mom and any other siblings who may be walking or crawling around.

However, my festival comes equipped with a twist. These films are representative of mothers who are real mothers!

For instance, the first film of the day is the 1981 film <I>Mommie Dearest<P>. Faye Dunaway gives a really, really over-the-top performance as Joan Crawford, the ultimate control freak as well as the loving mother of two darling children.

Based on the tabloid tell-all book by daughter Christina, <I>Mommie Dearest<P> comes across at times like a bad soap opera (like there's any <B>good<P> soap operas) and at other times like whiny, unbelievable gossip.

This movie single-handedly caused a drop in the sales of wire hangers and inspired a whole generation of Hollywood parents to try and do a better job for fear of their own little brats growing up and writing a book to trash Mom and Dad's image after they were dead.

Christina Crawford wants you to sympathize with her for the way she had to grow up, but I found myself rooting for Joan most of the time. In fact, if I could have, there were a couple of times I would have liked to have held Christina down for Joan so she could get in a few more good licks. Ah, but such is life.

Next up is Danny DeVito's black comedy, <I>Throw Momma From the Train<P>. This is a brilliant film that perfectly showcases DeVito's talent for dark humor.

<I>Momma<P> is shameless in its borrowing from the Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock, but that's excusable when it's done with such obvious affection for the films from which DeVito is stealing.

Billy Crystal stars as a writer who is so obsessed with the success his ex-wife is having with a book she stole from him that he has been unable to write anything but "The night was ... " for months.

DeVito plays a henpecked son who can't decide if he really wants to kill his mother or just make her proud of him – a dilemma to which most men can relate.

DeVito is taking a creative-writing class taught by Crystal, but the story he is working on has no real suspense. So Crystal tells him to go see a Hitchcock movie and learn how it is done.

The movie DeVito sees is <I>Strangers On A Train<P>, a diabolically brilliant 1951 movie involving two men who make a pact to kill each other's principal trouble-makers.

DeVito interprets this to mean that Crystal wants DeVito to kill his ex-wife, and in return, Crystal will kill DeVito's mother.

Needless to say, the movie contains some outrageously funny scenes, most involving the late Anne Ramsey's incredibly funny performance as DeVito's mother.

The third film of the festival is <I>Big Bad Mama II<P>, a 1987 sequel to the 1974 exploitation classic starring Angie Dickinson, William Shatner and Tom Skerritt.

Dickinson returns for the sequel, but Shatner and Skerritt apparently had better things to do. And with good reason, too, because this movie is really bad. But it's done in such a campy way that it's easy to stomach its utter badness.

The title character is a woman-gangster trying to survive in Depression-era America by heading a gang whose membership consists of her teenage daughters.

The dialogue is insipid and the plot almost nonexistent, but the two daughters spend a lot of the movie naked, and that sort of makes up for all the bad film making. Sort of.

All in all, <I>Big Bad Mama II<P> has a little bit of everything. Action (albeit ridiculously staged), drama (albeit ridiculously overacted) and family togetherness (albeit mostly in the buff).

Lastly, I present the ultimate mother-movie, Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 classic <I>Psycho<P>.

Anthony Perkins stars as Norman Bates, the seemingly innocent proprietor of the Bates Motel, who is taking care of his aging, sick mother. Janet Leigh is a woman on the run for embezzling money from her firm who decides to stay at the motel for awhile.

Hitchcock is the brilliant manipulator of audience expectations and a maker of many macabre masterpieces. Needless to say, this makes for one hell of a good movie.

Filmed in eerie black and white, <I>Psycho<P> contains some of the most frightening images ever captured on film. A must-see while you and mom are spending the day together.

Just stay out of the shower!

Wilson is a postbaccalaureate student studying history and government.

 

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ORPHEUS RISES

Alley show smoky and sweaty

 

by Aaron Dishman

Contributing Writer

Whether it be the wild sounds, the enticing smoky lights or the Deep-Southern Gothic stage setting, one cannot help but plunge into the depths of the Alley's <I>Orpheus Descending<P>.

Tennessee Williams' seldom celebrated masterpiece has found new vibrance on the Alley stage. Set in a small county in Mississippi, <I>Orpheus<P> involves the fiery experiences of a young drifter in search of a place to ease into his 30s. What he finds, however, mirrors the myth the play is named after.

Just as Orpheus journeyed into the Underworld to rescue his beloved Eurydice, it seems that Val Xavier can do the same for the obviously endangered Lady Torrence. Little does he know the risk he will take by removing the snake-skin jacket, his trademark, for the blue blazer of a store employee.

As for Lady Torrence, she is still plagued by the loss of her father in a vineyard fire when she was only 18. She toils on, day by day, with a dying, dictatorial husband who seems to be a large source of the cancer of this small community.

Throw in a racy, young town outcast and a prophetic half-Indian, and three or four gossips later, you have a delicious pressure cooker in which the surreal whims of director Michael Wilson's mind are allowed to run rampant.

At first glance, the audience can all but taste the old South in the innovative stage design. Smoky shadows and dark, forboding colors give life to a setting where oppression has obviously been king. Set in only one location with no scene changes, the audience gets a real feel for the permanent complacency that falls over the play's heroine.

Cruel, psychotic whispers filter in to give the setting the added level of paranoia it needs to thrust its message of fear and ignorance.

Enter the actors. Gordana Rashovich is spellbinding as the very Italian Lady Torrence. Her presentation is as clear as crystal, and her transitions are as smooth as glass. Rashovich forces the audience to feel the pain of a woman who discovers that the same man she has shared a bed with for years, brutally burned her father for the mortal sin of selling booze to blacks. Her desire to ascend from this hellish town is masterfully communicated.

Mark Devine plays a very believable Val Xavier, whose boyish Southern accent only acts to disprove the man the character sees himself becoming. Val often lapses into songs of love when Lady is around, and everyone can feel the impending affair between the two.

Adding to the chemistry and sense of urgency is the occasional rapping on the ceiling from the husband's cane. This summons Lady to her husband's side much like a judge's gavel summons a convict to jail, or more accurately, the electric chair.

Above all, though, stands Annalee Jeffries as Carol Cutrere. Her timing makes the blood boil, and her voice and diction make the pulse race. If there is any sense of untamed fury in this play, it belongs to this tragic young misfit and future holder of the all-symbolic snake-skin jacket.

The last words of the play belong to Carol, who (while holding the jacket) professes that wild things leave their skins behind. Indeed, this play will leave the audience with a skin that will never allow it to forget the intense spectacle it beheld.

<I>Orpheus Descending<P>

Where: Alley Theatre, 615 Texas Ave.

When: Through May 8

Cost: $17 to $40

 

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TALENT STILL PRIORITY FOR BROOKS AND COUGARS

Cougar Sports Service

Two more junior-college transfers were added to an impressive inaugural recruiting class for head basketball coach Alvin Brooks.

Kirk Ford, a 6-7, 215-pound forward from Midland Junior College, and 6-5, 205-pound guard Kenya Capers from Moberly Junior College in Montana both signed to play with Houston in 1994-95 Tuesday.

Those having unpleasant flashbacks to the juco-transfer days of Pat Foster can rest easy. Brooks has emphasized high school recruiting thus far, signing three top players out of local schools.

Damon Jones of Ball High in Galveston; Galen Robinson from McArthur High; and 7-2 Adrian Taylor from Washington High in Houston were all signed in November.

Brooks also landed Tommie Davis of Crenshaw High in Los Angeles during the early signing period.

Capers averaged 22.5 points a game, eight rebounds and three assists for Moberly last season. Ford (12.9 ppg, 5 rpg) played for a Midland team that was 31-6 last year, finishing sixth at the NJCAA tournament.

Brooks' recruiting class was already ranked by some publications as one of the top 10 in the nation before Ford's and Capers' signings.

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