THE MASK UNMASKS WILD CARREY

by Alexandria Nora McGovern

Contributing Writer

Not since <I>Who Framed Roger Rabbit<P>, has there been a movie quite like <I>The Mask<P>. Filled with humor , romance and a nerd turned super-hero, <I>The Mask<P> definitely delivers.

Jim Carrey, (<I>In Living Color<P>, <I>Ace Ventura — Pet Detective<P>) stars in this off-beat romantic comedy. He plays Stanley Ipcis, a nobody banker who lives for his dog Milo and, of course, his cartoons.

Through his job, he meets Tina, a beautiful lounge singer who wants to open an account. The audience knows that she has different intentions, but it takes Stanley until halfway through the movie to figure it out.

Of course he immediately falls in love and vows to do whatever it takes to make her his own. If you can make it through the first half hour of the film, it will be one of the best decisions you will make this summer.

On the way home from a disastrous night out on the town, Stanley finds himself stuck on a bridge in the middle of nowhere. This is where the plot thickens. He glances at the water and sees what he thinks is a dead body. After he unsuccessfully tries to save a garbage bag's life, he sees a mask. Just a plain wooden mask. He takes the mask home and thinks nothing of it.

After he tries on the mask he is transformed into a super-hero; just the kind he's always wanted to be. What follows is an amazing display of special effects. The movie takes off from this point and doesn't stop until the end. There are scenes where he fights off bullies, robs a bank and performs a tango in front of a 500 people. (He gets a standing ovation.)

Now enters the bad guy, a huge mob-type who just happens to be Tina's boyfriend. But it's okay; we know she just loves him for his money. The boyfriend is after the man behind the mask, Tina is in love with the masked man and the police are trying to arrest him for attacking his landlord while he was "under the influence" of the mask.

With the wit that Carrey is now famous for, he made the whole theater laugh as a group. We get more of the Ace Ventura type wit that we all are growing to love (well, most of us, anyway.) Some might think that Carrey has a tendency to overact, and true, he does, yet he does so in an amusing way. He lets the audience know that he knows he's overacting. Not only is Carrey great, but his dog Milo steals the show for a few moments of superb effects that you'll be telling your friends about after the show. The audience all cheered when the movie ended. Not because they were glad that it was over, but for the way it ended.

All in all, the movie is great. If you're in the mood for a movie that makes you slap the person next to you to make sure that they saw one thing or another, this is the movie for you. One word of advice though: you will be repeating sayings from this movie for weeks to come.

 

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LOANS CAN BE PROCESSED IN ONLY 72 HOURS;

REPAY BASED ON INCOME AFTER GRADUATION

by Ericka Schiche

Daily Cougar Staff

Direct student loans – which can be processed in a time span of 72 hours – have been proffered to students since July 1.

Within the next year, 5 percent, or $1 billion of the total government-backed loan pool, will be allocated for direct loans. The remainder of loan requests will be handled by banks and private lenders. Next year, the share of direct loans will accrue to 40 percent, and eventually, direct loans should constitute the bulk of processed loans.

David Longanecker, the Department of Education's assistant secretary for post-secondary education, said the direct loan can be classified as one "that's made directly from the federal government. That's quite a bit different from the old program, where we essentially paid private banks to provide the capital."

Direct lending could account for up to 60 percent of the national lending volume by the 1998-99 school year. The implementation of the direct loan plan negates the need for such liaison agencies as banks and guarantors.

UH Director of Financial Aid Robert Sheridan could not be reached for comment.

The new process was devised in part to eliminate the unnecessary paperwork by furnishing students with one comprehensive form.

"There's a single application form we created so that students can now file for all federal student financial assistance with one form. There used to be an array of forms a student had to fill out," Longanecker said.

The program was passed by Congress last August, and institutions were selected by the Department of Education's officials for the first phase in November. The first application processing phase began June 15.

"Students fill out that new form. They can do that electronically at their school, they can do it on a computer – it's transmitted electronically to us – or they can do it on paper," Longanecker said. "Either way we will process it as soon as we receive it. Within 72 hours the school will have the eligibility of that student for the various federal programs."

One aspect of the new direct loan program is the income contingency clause, which allows students to repay loans predicated on their base income. Information about the student's income – if he or she opts to accept the income contingency plan – is provided to the Department of Education by the Internal Revenue Service.

"If they get out of school and don't get a great job for a while, that's OK; they won't have to pay so much on their loan. If they take a public service job or for some reason their investment in themselves doesn't pay off substantially, we'll take the hit as the federal government – and intentionally so," Longanecker said. "We're also allowing students who took out old student loans (and) who want to convert those into direct loans so that they can participate in income contingency or some of the other features to do that."

The relative success of banks hindered the proponents of direct lending from instituting the plan earlier.

"The banks, the secondary markets and the others provided service, no doubt, but they did so in an extremely profitable way. This was the second most profitable component of most banks' portfolios," he said.

Longanecker said the program was instituted for three reasons: the president's initiatives couldn't be incorporated into the old program; the General Accounting Office report categorized the old program as insufficient; and the program was mistakenly added to the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act last year – the direct lending program was labeled a potential cost saver to the tune of $4 billion.

He said if someone wanted to take that provision out of the bill, they would have to show alternative requisite amount of savings from another source.

Since 1991, the Department of Education has had the right to terminate an educational institution from the loan program if in excess of 30 percent of the student borrowing population defaulted for three consecutive years.

The alternative or supplement to a loan is a scholarship or grant. In the past decade, 162,576 students have received Pell Grants for 6 to 10 consecutive years – collectively worth $1.6 billion.

 

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NEW SEXUAL ASSAULT LAWS SOUGHT

by Tiffany Vaughner

Daily Cougar Staff

In a statement to the National Coalition Against Sexual Assault, Texas State Rep. Debra Danburg said she is preparing three pieces of legislation regarding sexual assault for the upcoming 74th legislature.

Danburg, a democrat from Houston, District 137, said the legislation will be filed before the next legislative session begins in January of 1995.

The first proposed law would make it illegal for a peace officer or an attorney representing the state to require a polygraph examination for a victim who has made sexual assault charges.

"It is an insult to a woman if you say, 'You have to take a lie detector test.' If it where a man and he'd been assaulted there would be know question that a crime was committed," Danburg said.

She said polygraph examinations of victims were not a regular occurrence in Houston, but they have stopped. Currently, only victims of sexual assault and arson are subjected to polygraph examinations, she added.

She said she understood the use of polygraph examinations in the case of arson victims because of the potential for insurance fraud. But, she said, in the instance of sexual assault, there is no reason to doubt the victim because that victim may be a woman or because the violence was sexual in nature.

The second piece of proposed legislation would amend the newly rewritten Penal Code by adding Section 21.14 to that code. The omitted section, which was passed last session, prohibits sexual contact between mental health service providers and their patients for two years after the patient has left the providers care. This section includes doctors, chiropractors, social workers, counselors and clergy.

Danburg said this kind of misconduct was already against the code of ethics of many professional organizations. She said she had been pushing to get this made into law and said, "This was a hard won victory for the women and children of Texas who have been subjected to unwanted and exploitive advances by the very people in whom they had entrusted their health and psychological well being."

The third proposal would extend the statute of limitations for sexually abused children to file charges. The current law gives the victim 10 years from the commission of the offense to press charges. The proposed law would extend that time to to the victim's 18 birthday and 10 years after. This would allow the victim to press charges until the victim's 28th birthday.

Danburg said that of all 50 states, Texas has one of the best systems for handling sexual crimes. She said that even though Texas' laws were once "deplorable," they have now become the model for other states. She said she hoped the proposed changes would make it even more true.

"It used to be that laws said it was okay to rape a girl if she was considered promiscuous. During the trial, attorneys would ask whether the victim asked for it or not. This was changed 10 or 12 years ago when the word rape was changed to sexual assault. It (the law) was also made more gender neutral and the violence of the the act was made more clear," Danburg said.

She said her plans for next session included working on passing a "Deferred adjudication" bill. Danburg said a person accused of a crime would stand before a judge and enter a plea of no contest. The judge would hold the adjudication for 10 years. If, in that 10 years, the accused did not commit another sex crime they would be set free. If not they would immediately begin serving their sentence.

Danburg said the deferment would be available up to 10 years but would not be less than five. She said she would also make it a part of the bill that the accused would report to a counselor for weekly visits and have no contact with children, the girlfriend or spouse.

 

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TEXAS OFFERS BEST PLACES TO CAMP, CLIMB, FISH, ETC.

by Jenalia Moreno

Daily Cougar Staff

There are few vacation spots that offer mountain climbing, water skiing, backpacking, swimming, fishing and rafting. Except in Texas.

Texas offers some of the best parks in the nation. Visitors can spend up to 14 days in a campground and still have plenty to do on their next visit to that same park, and best of all, many parks are only a few hours drive from Houston.

Canyon Lake, located 16 miles north of New Braunfels on FM 306 is perfect for water skiing, sailboating or fishing. The campgrounds on the shore are beautiful, just do not try to set up a tent at night on the shore. It can be very windy. It is also hard to find a campground with warm showers, so get there early so you can stake out a campsite near the showers.

About two miles south of Canyon Lake are several businesses that rent tubes (or toobs), rafts and canoes. If you get a tube, be sure to get a tube with a bottom, to save your own bottom from the rocks. Earlybirds beware: Don't go into the water before 9 a.m. because the water is usually about 60 degrees.

The New Braunfels area is famous in Texas for its rapids. Canyon Lake is also located on the Guadalupe River, but there are usually fewer people and beer cans floating in the water.

Near Canyon Lake is Natural Bridge Caverns, one of the most interesting caves in Texas.

Inks Lake State Park is located nine miles west of Burnet. Recreation at Inks Lake includes scuba diving, golf, fishing, boating,rafting and swimming. The view from the hiking trails is spectacular around the lake.

Longhorn Cavern State Park is just a few miles from Inks Lake. Tour guides tell several legends about the caves, including that bandits hid in the caves.

Another great campground is Pedernales Falls, located 40 miles west of Austin on FM 3232. The main attraction at Pendernales is a river which cascades over the limestone bedrock. Swimming, wading and tubing are prohibited near the falls because of hazardous water conditions. However, fishing is allowed and visitors can walk along the giant stairstep rocks which lead upstream from the falls.

The campsites are removed from the river. Another option all campsites offer is primitive camping, which does not appeal to many people, especially first time campers. Primitive campsites offer no electricity or running water and campers have to carry all of their supplies for at least three miles at some campsites. So pack light if there are no other campsites available. During holiday weekends, most campsites only have primitive campsites available if you have not made a reservation.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is located 18 miles north of Fredericksburg on FM 965. The main attraction at Enchanted Rock is rock climbing and hiking. Visitors can wade in the small creek that runs alongside the 325 foot granite dome Enchanted Rock for which it was named. Indians who lived in the Enchanted Rock area believed it was inhabited by spirits because of the creaking noises heard at night. Those eerie noises are made when the surface of the rock contracts as the temperature drops after a hot day.

Closer to Houston is Sam Houston National Forest, which can be reached by either Interstate-45 or U.S. 59. It is surrounded by pine trees and offers swimming, fishing, canoeing and paddleboating. This is not one of the best camping spots in Texas, especially for people from Houston who are accustomed to seeing pine trees and swamps.

Most campsites charge between $3 to $6 per person or per vehicle, so camping is an inexpensive recreation. Camping equipment is a wise investment if you plan to camp often.

Camping essentials include:

Water. You can never bring enough water on a camping trip. Remember that some sites do not have running water and primitive campsites usually only have an outhouse nearby. The best containers for water are canteens with a string attached.

Tents are the most expensive equipment needed. Tents are cheaper in the winter or at the beginning of the summer when sporting goods stores have sales on tents. Make sure to practice setting up the tent before you embark on your camping trip, or you could end up stranded in the wilderness trying unsuccessfully for hours to set up the tent.

A durable sleeping bags usually cost about $19. Sleeping bags are necessary to keep warm because it does get cold at night, even in Texas. Also, sleeping bags help to keep out the bed bugs (mosquitos, ants, bees etc.).

Lighting is a must. Flashlights are only effective if you are hiking at night. Lanterns or tiki torches should be used at the campgrounds. Tiki torches are less than $3 at most stores.

Bug spray or lotion is very necessary. Cintranella candles are also an effective bug deterrent. Suntan lotion is also needed on any camping trip.

Be sure to keep all food and coolers inside of a car because wild animals, especially racoons, can open coolers and will hang around the campsite if any food is left on the ground.

Take a map of Texas with you because they indicate where all the campsites in the state are located. Camping guides are also helpful since they tell about the campsites and may help you to decide what campground you would like to go to.

 

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CAMPUS POLICE BRIEFS

The following crimes occurred on campus within the past two weeks, with the time the report was filed:

Date/Time: 7/29, 10:50 a.m.

Location: Engineering Building

A theft of UH property occurred. The reportee advised the theft of a voltage meter. There are no suspects. The theft occurred from 4 p.m. 7/25 to 10 a.m. 7/26.

Date/Time: 7/29, 4:31 p.m.

Location: Oberholtzer Hall

A theft of UH property occurred. The reportee reported the theft of two UH telephones. There are no suspects. The theft occurred from an unknown time 7/8 to an unknown time 7/20.

Date/Time: 7/30, 1:50 p.m.

Location: Lot 1A

A motor vehicle theft occurred. The theft occurred some time from 11 p.m. the previous night to 1:45 p.m. 7/30.

Date/Time: 7/31, 3:54 p.m.

Location: M.D. Anderson Library

A theft of UH property occurred at the library. A visitor was arrested for theft of books and placed in Harris County Jail. The theft occurred at 3:54 p.m. 7/30.

Date/Time: 8/2, 1:32 p.m.

Location: Old Science Building

A theft of UH property occurred. The reportee advised police that a UH-owned computer and accessories were stolen from a building. The theft occurred from 3 p.m. 7/22 to 8 a.m. 8/2.

Date/Time: 8/4, 3:05 a.m.

Location: Moody Towers

A visitor was panhandling in a residential building. He was arrested due to numerous criminal trespass warnings. The person was placed in Harris County Jail. The panhandling occurred from 3:05 a.m. to 3:07 a.m. 8/4.

 

Date/Time: 8/8, 5:27 p.m.

Location: Fleming Building

A visitor was arrested for robbery and admitted to Ben Taub Hospital for treatment of injuries sustained while fleeing from officers. The incident occurred at 5:20 p.m. on 8/8.

Date/Time: 8/8, 5:27 p.m.

Building: Oberholtzer Hall

A visitor was arrested for aggravated robbery. The incident occurred 5:30 p.m. 8/8.

 

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WOMEN'S SOCCER REPLACES MEN'S BASEBALL AT SFA

Cougar Sports Service

After 10 tumultuous years, Stephen F. Austin's baseball program came to a close when the university cut the program in efforts to make room for women's scholarships due to Title IX requirements.

The SFA board of regents approved the decision last Tuesday to discontinue baseball at the end of the 1995 season and replace it with women's soccer, which will begin in the fall of 1995.

The decision was made in an effort to comply with the Title IX NCAA Division I requirement that state universities must present as many opportunities to women athletes as possible.

The baseball program at SFA compiled a 183-354 record over the 10-year period. Of the 40 players now on the SFA roster, 10 are on scholarship.

The women's soccer program will offer 20 roster spots, six to be scholarship positions.

SFA will join North Texas as the only Southland schools to offer women's soccer at Division I level.

The UH baseball team went 4-0 versus SFA last year, outscoring them by a total of 17-5.

 

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DOWN...SET...HERE WE GO!

Summer football starts up with freshmen looking to take spots at LB, TE, DL

by William German

Daily Cougar Staff

The first full-squad football practice Thursday at Fouke Field will see bleary-eyed returning players rising at 5 a.m. to run, with the remainder of the 1994 UH squad waking at 5:30.

By 11 p.m., all will be safely tucked in bed. In between, there will be plenty of action, not to mention the inevitable football process of jobs being won and lost.

Without doubt, this year's incoming freshmen will have significant impact in that department.

Head coach Kim Helton said Tuesday the most intense freshman activity in summer practice will be at the linebacker position, where he said three athletes are "ready to compete."

Mike Parker, a 6-3, 215-pound middle linebacker from Lamar, reported to two-a-days Monday with 3.9 percent body fat. He also managed 26 bench-press repetitions of 225 pounds.

Chad Shaw, a 6-2, 225-pounder out of Fort Worth Haltom, and Sharpstown's Eric Woloson, at 6-2, 218, are also supposed to help at outside linebacker despite a lack of experience.

"Whatever flaws they have, they'll have to take them into the game," Helton said.

Everyone at practice Monday seemed impressed with Ben Fricke, a center in the McDonald's (high school) All-Star Game who was tried at defensive lineman. Fricke, at 6-2, 275 out of Austin Anderson, bench-pressed 28 reps of 225 pounds, tying Allen Aldridge's team record.

Joining Fricke in competing for defensive line positions will be freshmen Louis Hampton, William Foster and Leonta Rheams.

A position at which no legendary players will have to be replaced is that of tight end, which will be used more extensively in the Cougar offense this year.

The Cougars have two intriguing possibilities entering school there: Oscar Portales, a 6-3 San Antonio product whose weight stands at 290, and 6-3, 265-pound Charles Johnson out of Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Portales sprained an ankle Monday which Helton said could cost him two weeks.

"He'll have to get in shape," Helton said of Portales, who was listed at 260 pounds on the summer roster.

The secondary has few freshman starting candidates, although local newcomer Bubba Ray Meche from Northbrook has made a strong impression. He pulled a hamstring Monday which will keep him out for several days.

Cornerback Alfred Young, voted the outstanding defensive player in spring football, is currently ineligible for the fall semester due to an NCAA regulation which requires athletes to have 50 percent of credits toward graduation completed by their junior year.

Helton said Young could have as much as 60 percent of his hours completed in a less-taxing major. Young, a transfer from Gulf Coast Junior College in '93, enrolled in electrical engineering when he first matriculated.

He is currently petitioning the school to let him out of that major, Helton said.

 

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AK OFFERS DIVERSE BOOKS

AK Press recently announced the release of its newest catalog of books and other media.

The publisher, which has offices in London, San Francisco and Edinburgh, Scotland, specializes in alternative literature and radical theoretical writings. It also has a full listing of tapes of political speeches, music and art as well as apparel.

The catalog is available for $1 from AK Press at P.O. Box 40682, San Francisco, Calif. 94140-0682.

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