Cougar Sport Service

Each year, individuals preparing to go to college or graduate school face the dilemma of how to pay for tuition, room and board, textbooks, lab fees and other expenses. College costs have skyrocketed and continue to increase annually, putting extra strain on family budgets and assets.

Yet there are over 375,000 funding sources available to assist these students. Contrary to popular belief, over 80 percent of the funds available to students do not depend on family need or high grades. Many are based on such factors as the student's interests, hobbies, academic focus, age, ethnic background, or parents' work or military service.

Remarkably, over $6.6 billion of this funding goes uncollected each year simply because people do not ask for it, according to a report drafted by the National Commission on Student Financial Aid. Now a new academic funding publication, updated for 1994, is available to help guide students through the process, outline their options and identify sources for assistance.

For information on how to receive academic funding and scholarships, send a No. 10 self-addressed, double-stamped envelope plus $2 to cover handling to: the National Academic Funding Administration; 26 Coe Drive, Suite 1300; Durham, NH 03824.

Many corporations offer employees' offspring scholarships, as do many local organizations.

For information on campus concerning scholarships and financial aid, call 743-9051.






by Daniel Scholl

Daily Cougar Staff

The University of Houston took the first formal step in negotiating a new conference affiliation Aug. 22 when UH President James Pickering joined five schools in a conference call about a new alignment.

The presidents of the University of Houston, the University of Louisville, the University of Cincinnati, Memphis University, Tulane University and the University of Southern Mississippi agreed to work together to form an all-sports conference.

Past realignment rumors had involved either a straight merger of the Great Midwest and Metro conferences, creating a totally new conference, or expanding Metro to include UH and the football-playing Great Midwest teams. Now it seems these six schools are abandoning those rumors and finding their own solution.

Louisville, Tulane and Southern Mississippi compete in the Metro in all sports but football, in which they are independents. Cincinnati and Memphis are joined with the Great Midwest, but are also football independents.

"I think there is a strong indication that those (six) schools are interested in aligning themselves for football; the question is what banner it will be under," Metro commissioner Ralph McFillen said.

As to the future of a revised Metro, which had become the strongest rumor in recent weeks, McFillen added, "I support a restructured Metro with schools from other conferences to make it work."

For an all-sports conference to work, McFillen said any plans would have to include the two Great Midwest schools.

UH athletic director Bill Carr has repeatedly stated he would like to have the conference situation resolved as soon as possible, but as of now, no deadline has been set.

Pickering emphasized the infancy of the new situation, calling the negotiations very preliminary.

"We are months away," he said.

Liberty Media has offered a television contract to Metro under the condition it becomes an all-sports conference. However, reports have been that Liberty is growing impatient with the Metro's inability to reach a decision on the offer, which was tendered in May.

UH is the only Southwest Conference school still looking for a conference affiliation after the SWC breaks up.






Berger halfway toward raising $60,000 to seal deal

by Tiffany Vaughner

Daily Cougar Staff

The UH School of Theater has plans in the works to hire Broadway producer Stuart Ostrow as a distinguished professor and as head of a laboratory for the development of new musicals.

Ostrow, winner of two Tony awards for Best Musical with <I>1776<P> and <I>M. Butterfly<P>, would join the list of national and UH notables, including director Jose Quintero and playwright Edward Albee.

Sidney Berger, director of the UH School of Theater, said Ostrow was asked to join the school to promote more of an interest in musical theater.

Berger said $60,000 is needed to bring Ostrow to Houston; he has raised half the amount already from outside sources and is awaiting the other half from sources inside UH. Berger said he is not at liberty to say where the funds are coming from until the plans to bring Ostrow to Houston are finalized.

He said the amount of money should not raise any eyebrows because it is "completely in line with what other distinguished professors get."

Berger said he sees Ostrow's presence as not only a feather in UH's cap, but also as a selling point for theater students and faculty deciding on a university.

"I see Ostrow's presence at UH as bringing forth enormous growth almost immediately. His being here will draw more students into the theater program as well as faculty from around the country. Ostrow will also be responsible for helping the department promote new musicals to possibly be produced on Broadway," Berger said.

He said he hoped to raise the $60,000 by the end of the year so that Ostrow would be able to begin production and musical theater classes in the spring.

Berger said Ostrow is excited about coming to Houston and about the prospect of starting here what he started in the 1970s with musical theater labs in New York's St. Clement's Church and Kennedy Center, and at Harvard University.

Ostrow was not available for comment.

Ostrow established the Stuart Ostrow Foundation's Musical Theatre Lab, a nonprofit professional workshop for original musical theater. Since its beginning, the lab has presented 19 new and experimental works such as <I>Really Rosie<P>, by Maurice Sendak and Carole King, and <I>The Robber Bridegroom<P>, by Alfred Uhry and Robert Waldman.

His production of David Hirson's <I>La Bete<P> won the Oliver Award for Best Comedy last year, and he was named "Producer of the Year 1993-94" by the National Alliance for Musical Theatre.






Violence finds societal role


by J. Sara Dean Cromwell

Contributing Writer

As you are flipping through TV channels one night, a scene catches your eye.

You turn back to it and stare. The scene features naked, mutilated homicide victims. As you watch, you see the final expressions of horror, surprise and pain etched onto the victims' faces. In graphic detail, you are told how these people died as you see photo after photo of the crime scene. Blood splattered around the room. Gaping holes where organs used to be and where bullets now dwell. What is this show you are watching? The latest Freddy Krueger or Jason horror movie?

No. It's a broadcast of the local evening news.

Recently, in all facets of life, "reality" has emerged. On television, police dramas are complemented with tabloid news shows and cop shows in which photographers follow real police officers around and tape them arresting real people and dealing with real situations.

The foundations of the many tabloid news shows are the high-profile violent cases, such as the ones involving Amy Fisher, the Bobbitts, the Menendez brothers and now O.J. Simpson.

The development and conclusion of these stories inevitably leads to several made- for-TV movies and books about the subjects as well. In fact, there are currently at least two books on the shelves about O.J. Simpson and the two murders for which he has been arrested and is awaiting trial.

Violence also reigns on the silver screen. Such violent movies as the <I>Terminator<P> and <I>Rambo<P> series have made "killings" at the box office. Other movies about fighting, airplane hijackings, bombings and the CIA are also quite popular.

What does this abundance of violence, both real and dramatized, say about society today? Have we become desensitized to the image of violence in books, movies and television? What kinds of distinctions do we draw between the images of violence and the violence that occurs in our homes, on our streets or in our workplaces? Why do we have such a voyeuristic obsession with violence to the extent that items such as "criminal trading cards," with photos of people like Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer and Amy Fisher, would be marketable?

Interviews with two University of Houston students reveal both similar and opposing views on violence. Tasha Traylor, a political science major, says society as a whole is absorbed in the violence issue, and that while the media does have a tendency to blow it out of proportion, violence should be shown on television. She also says society at large has become desensitized to violence due to the manner in which it is portrayed, as well as the pervasiveness and frequent occurrence of violence. In the 1950s, she says, unspoken rules regarding morals and ethics were enforced, but that in the 1990s, society has vetoed those rules. Also more prevalent in the 1950s than today was religion.

Traylor says that as the importance of religion in our daily lives recedes, this allows room for violence to become more important.

Olga Flores, a psychology major, says people and society are changing. People are trying to avoid violence by being careful of where they go and what they do. Nevertheless, she describes violence as a ubiquitous specter in society: "Violence can get you anywhere, but you've got to live," even if it is with a small amount of fear. "There must be a solution, but where is it, and how do we find it?"

She says society is trying to change, but that there is a fine line between the right to bear arms, the right to live in peace and the right to kill.

One sentiment both Flores and Traylor share is the belief that economics plays an important part in the outbreak of violence over the past several years. Flores says youths and teenagers are largely blamed for violent acts, and Traylor agrees.

Much of the violence portrayed as gang-related involves attacks on bourgeois society and the rich. Traylor says that while some gang members prey on society as a whole, they typically "attack rival gangs in retaliation." Of the media's accusations toward rappers, Traylor says, "Rappers don't incite violence. They are stating reality, reporting incidents that happen to them, because of where they live."

It has also been suggested that family structure has the largest effect on violence. Much has been written about the decline in morals and values in both traditional and nontraditional family units, and how this supposedly leads to a higher crime rate. The outbreak of the depiction of violence on television, in movies and in popular media, some say, is simply a byproduct of this decline in family structure.

Violence is everywhere. It entertains us, it sickens us, it demoralizes us. We are exposed to it in every facet of our lives, primarily through the media. All we can do to trigger an abatement of violent activity in society is to place more value on human life and, like Flores, be more altruistic as we grow older.

Then the bloody crime scenes will become less titillating to the viewer – even if these scenes are televised images seen in the comfort of a home.






Fashion trend of Woodstock era deserves praise


What's wrong with my tie-dyed gear? Just because this style of dress was originally popular during the mid-’60s and early ’70s doesn't mean I'm a throwback to the Woodstock I era. All it means is that I choose to wear tie-dyed clothes.

I mean, look at all of the advantages associated with wearing tie-dyed clothes. It goes with everything in the closet, so no one can call me uncoordinated. And stains don't show up much either – so no one can call me a slob! Best of all, it allows me to express myself through the way I dress – so no one can say I'm just a follower (except for Tabitha Soren).

Tie-dyed garb is probably one of the most versatile designs of clothing around. So the next time you see someone wearing tie-dyed shirts, pants, jackets and hats, and entertain the thought of teasing them about it, stop and think for a minute. Then go get some for yourself!

–J. Sara Dean Cromwell

Sartorial slouches love to call tie-dyed shirts "beatnik redux," "a sign of allegiance to the Grateful Dead," "Woodstockesque," and "bohos."

Actually, to the uninitiated, tie-dyed clothing also represents the Summer of Love, Haight-Ashbury Street, psychedelia and rugged individualism gone haywire.

"I've hated tie-dye all my life," proclaimed Grateful Dead member Bob Weir at the 1994 Rock-and-Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

The tie and dye process is not an American invention and has existed in Eastern societies for centuries. In Malaya, the process is known as <I>plangi<P>; in India as <I>bandhana<P>; and in Japan, the process is referred to as <I>shibori<P>. Many Nigerian daishikis (dress shirts) also feature tie-dye patterns. The design process originated in Asian countries and was practiced in the sub-Indian region of the continent, as well as the Malayan archipelago.

In the United States, tie-dyed shirts of rainbow hues are viewed as retro-wear in light of the cyclical, fickle nature of fashion. Designs occasionally feature spirals, such symbols of '60s pop culture as peace signs, and marijuana leaves, but people who wear these shirts don't necessarily worship Janis, Jimi or Jim.

– Ericka Schiche





Cougar Sports Service

Head football coach Kim Helton received some bad news Monday night when he learned that he will lose four players for the season and three for opening night, Sept. 1, against Kansas.

Anthony Woodberri, Bruce Thompson and Bernard White have been declared ineligible to compete because they failed to meet NCAA criteria and will be out for the season. They can still practice with the team and are taking classes. Josh Hardee, the fourth player lost for the year, has left school.

Alfred Young, Tommy Guy and Tywon Guy are awaiting an appeal from the NCAA, but will be forced to sit out Thursday night. Word from the appeals committee should be heard late this week or early next week.

Joey Mouton and Carlos Chester are still awaiting final grades from summer school.






by Tanya Eiserer

Daily Cougar Staff

Administration officials announced Monday the appointment of Richard Rozelle, Psychology Department chairman, as the new dean of the College of Social Sciences.

Rozelle replaces Harrell Rodgers, who served as dean for eight years. Rodgers' removal resulted from an apparent ongoing conflict with President James H. Pickering and Chancellor Alexander Schilt.

"We need to move on and we need everybody's help," Rozelle said. "Harrell Rodgers has done an exceptional job of running the College of Social Sciences. We are attempting to have as smooth a transition as possible."

Effective Sept. 1, Rozelle's appointment will last for a five-year term pending the approval of the Board of Regents.

"Professor Rozelle brings to the position a profound commitment to research, scholarship and instructional quality who is respected by social sciences faculty and staff," Provost Henry Trueba said.

Rozelle, a member of the Coalition for Excellence, said he wants to bring the concerns about evaluating the cost-effectiveness of the UH System, examining UH's legislative lobbying efforts and forming a strategic plan for the university to the president's Cabinet.

Instead of conducting a nationwide search for a new dean, university officials decided to look within.

"It is, of course, a question of money. It is not a cheap thing to search for a dean," said Faculty Senate President Ernst Leiss. "There was an impetus to have a regular dean rather than an interim dean. It speaks well for him that the department chairs endorsed him for becoming their boss."

Rozelle received a unanimous recommendation from the chairs of the sociology, political science and anthropology departments and from a distinguished professor representing the psychology department.

"We were unanimous on it. We are quite happy with what has transpired," said Kent Tedin, political science chairman.

Distinguished Professor of Psychology Richard Evans represented his department in the discussions between the chairs over who they would recommend to Trueba for the dean's position.

"Trueba was in a bad spot. He needed to come up with someone that the leaders of social sciences will support," Evans said.

As the new dean, Rozelle will lead the departments of anthropology, military science, political science, psychology and sociology. The college's enrollment is about 3,500 with 125 faculty members.

"I look forward to continuing the highly respected academic excellence established and maintained during recent years at the college," Rozelle said. "We are proud of our tradition of nationally recognized scholarship and service to the community."

Rozelle directed the Social Psychology Doctoral Program since 1975 and served as chairman since 1991.

Rozelle's research focuses on communication, intergroup relations, organizational behavior, methodology and decision making.

He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin in 1962, and his master's and Ph.D. at Northwestern University in 1966.

"Rozelle's appointment is an eloquent testimony to his years of distinguished service, effective administration and leadership since joining the UH faculty in 1966," Trueba said.






by Zafar Baek

Contributing Writer

As the health care debate heats up in Congress, an important issue is being ignored – the role of the pharmacist in reducing the cost of health care.

It is estimated that over $37 billion is spent each year in this country on hospitalization directly attributable to noncompliance with laws governing counselling by pharmacists. Another disturbing statistic shows that less than 30 to 50 percent of all people with high blood pressure have their problem under control. There are 20 million lost work days, resulting in $1.5 billion in lost earnings per year due to noncompliance.

The State Board of Pharmacy had these problems in mind when they made counseling mandatory for all patients. The pharmacist is to ask you, the patient, if you would like to be counseled. It is, therefore, in your best interest to seek counseling from a pharmacist at the time of dispensing.

When you have visited the physician, and have been to the pharmacy, there are several things you should have been told by the time you start your therapy. You should know the name of your medication, why you are taking it, how much, how to take it, and how often.

You should be aware of what to expect as a result of the treatment, how long will it take for the therapy to work and what to do if you do not see results. You should also know how long you should be on treatment, its side effects and how to manage them.

Once you have learned how the therapy works, you should also know a few other details about the medication, such as what to do if a dose is missed and any special storage requirements. Finally, you should be aware of any precautions you must take while on this medication.

You must believe that you can exert some degree of control over your illness (either alleviation of symptoms or cure) by carrying out the treatment plan. You must get involved in taking care of your treatment, believe and understand the diagnosis, believe in the efficacy of the prescribed treatment. You must know exactly how, and for how long, to take the medication and value the outcome of treatment more than the cost of treatment.

A pharmacist is your last link in your treatment; utilize your local pharmacist to help yourself get the best treatment you deserve. It is, after all, your money – and your health.






by Andrea Ratto

Contributing Writer

Another fall semester has begun and it is time to say goodbye to the beach and hello to the books. The University of Houston has a special office designed to make this transition just a bit smoother.

Learning Support Services is best known for the individual tutoring services it provides. Although the subjects in which tutoring is offered vary from semester to semester (depending on staff availability), tutoring is usually available on a walk-in basis to students enrolled in the following courses: Spanish (lower-division only), French (all levels), Italian (all levels), German (all levels), MATH 1300-3331 (all math courses through Differential Equations), CHEM 1301 (Foundations of Chemistry), CHEM 1331-2 (Fundamentals of Chemistry), CHEM 3331-2 (Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry), BIOL 1431-2 (Introduction to Biology), PHYS 1301-2 (General Physics), Physics 1311-2 (Physics for Majors), COSC 1301 (FORTRAN), COSC 1410 (Pascal), PHIL 1321 (Logic I), ENGL 1300 (Fundamentals of English), ENGL 1303-4 (Freshman English), any literature course offered by the English Department, any Writing Intensive course, FINA 3332 (Business Finance), and FINA 3334 (Managerial Analysis).

The cheerful decor makes Learning Support Services a pleasant place to study – even for students who do not need tutoring. All UH students are eligible for an unlimited number of tutoring sessions each semester. According to Ken Williams, Learning Support Services' academic coordinator, students can generally work with their tutors as long as necessary, unless they visit the center during exam week or other peak-use periods. During such times, tutoring sessions are limited to 30 minutes in length.

For those students who like to study in groups, LSS hosts study groups for MATH 1314-1330 (Business Calculus) and CHEM 1331. In addition, study skills, test-taking and time management workshops are offered. Most workshops are held during the day, although some afternoon workshops are available.

In addition to tutoring and formal workshops, self-help materials are available. The department publishes numerous hand-outs about test-taking, note-taking, study skills and time management. Students can also visit LSS' Multimedia Resource Center to view videotapes; listen to audiotapes about mathematics, physics and study skills; or use GRE/GMAT preparation software.

Each semester, LSS needs a few good students to join its tutoring staff. To be hired as a tutor, a student must have a 3.00 overall GPA, a 3.25 GPA in his or her major and at least a grade of 'B' in the subject he plans to tutor. According to Williams, students do not have to be eligible for work-study in order to work for LSS.

Learning Support Services is located in Room 321 of the Social Work Building. Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, and 9 a.m. to noon Friday.






Vokes, Tourillon newest members of UH squad

by Hiren Patel

Daily Cougar Staff

The Houston volleyball team has found two experienced players to replace those it lost to graduation.

Marie-Claude Tourillon and Debbie Vokes, both hitters, bring a wealth of international talent to the team.

Tourillon, who hails from Canada, and Vokes, a native of Australia, cited the chance to play volleyball and study at the same time as their reasons for coming to UH.

"I didn't want to stay in Montreal because there is no school-supported volleyball team," Tourillon said. "I want to study in English and attend the architecture school."

"The main reason I came here is because of the opportunity that not a lot of people get in Australia," Vokes said.

Vokes, nursing a shoulder injury, said she came here because of the better medical treatment she will receive.

Although she has played mainly on offense and enjoys it, she will be an outside hitter on defense most of the season.

"My best part of the game is spiking ability, but now I get to improve on the part of the game that needs most improvement" Vokes said.

For now, until her shoulder feels better, Vokes will not be able to spike or hit any volleyballs above the shoulders.

"Playing on defense is, more than anything, a challenge," Vokes said. "It's not the highlight of my game. I want to learn as much as possible about defense."

Head volleyball coach Bill Walton said Vokes might be redshirted toward the end of the season if her shoulder doesn't respond to rehabilitation. However, if the shoulder does improve, she might play some offense.

Unlike her teammate, Tourillon will start as the middle blocker alongside Lilly Denoon.

Neither player sees any differences in the rules of the game itself, but both said there were some adjustments each needed to make.

"The thing that is most difficult for me is (that) the codes in Montreal are in French, so I have to adjust to that," Tourillon said. "There is no difference in rules on the court. The season is shorter here, but we practice twice as much.

"We play at a higher tempo game here, but we play with the same techniques. The defenses we play are pretty much the same."

"The types of plays we run are slightly different," Vokes said of the contrast. "There is not much tempo difference, but the positioning (of players) is different."

Both players said a major difference between the teams they have previously played for and the Cougar team appears to be greater dedication.

"Our national team back home played as individuals," Vokes said. "Here, everyone seems to encourage one another and play more as a team."

Tourillon, who attended the University of Montreal for one year, said she saw sports as being an important factor here. However, she said she doubted that students even knew there was a volleyball team on her former campus.

"Volleyball is more important for players here than in Montreal," Tourillon said. "The players here are more serious because you have to make more sacrifices."

Before deciding to play for the Houston volleyball team, Tourillon played on the Quebec provincial team and on the team at Montreal.

In 1993, Tourillon was named Most Valuable Player of the Canadian Collegial national championships. Vokes played on the Australian junior national team for three years.






Backlog, lack of workers problem for freshmen athletes

by William German

Daily Cougar Staff

Those fans who still follow Southwest Conference football may be following with interest a scenario developing at Baylor this year.

Five BU football players and four other athletes are no longer able to practice or receive financial aid due to a new process implemented by the NCAA in 1993.

The trouble is, none of the students appears to be problematic eligibility-wise. In fact, a National Honor Society member has fallen prey to the NCAA ax.

The Initial-Eligibility Clearinghouse requires every freshman athlete at a Division I or II school to register with it before he/she is able to receive aid, practice with the team or even get an official recruiting visit.

The clearinghouse is administered by American College Testing, the makers of the college-entrance exam.

Unfortunately, the certification process has hit a few snags.

The Houston Chronicle reported in a story Aug. 28 that the clearinghouse had only 60 employees and 20 direct phone lines to deal with 300 institutions.

Unsurprisingly, this has produced a backlog of students waiting to be cleared.

Associate athletic director and NCAA compliance officer at UH Bill McGillis explained the certification process in full.

McGillis said the first step for a student wishing to receive an athletic scholarship at a Division I or II school would be to register with the clearinghouse on his own, carrying a fee of $18.

An official transcript from every high school the athlete has ever attended must then be sent to the clearinghouse. It must also receive the athlete's college-entrance test scores, a process that can cost more than $20 if the scores have to be rushed, which is typical, McGillis said.

After the first three phases, all the high schools in question must submit another form, called 48H. The form is a registry of all classes that meet the NCAA definition of "core courses."

"If the school hasn't done that (48H) before, it can be pretty hard," McGillis said.

A process requiring so many actions from students with other worries is bound to have problems, but this process was not phased in gradually, having just started this year.

"The biggest problem (with the registration) is that people weren't educated enough beforehand," McGillis said. "Even though kids knew about it, it was late summer before they took it (registering) seriously.

"It should be better next year," he added. "The kids will still be a little bit in the dark, but the universities will be better informed on getting the word out."

As for the phone system, McGillis said the direct lines to representatives close at 4:30 p.m. and are closed weekends, making it hard to get information on students' status.

There is a 24-hour automated system designed to keep schools abreast of athletes' status, but McGillis said the system may not be updated when calls are made.

The clearinghouse process also requires high school seniors to be certified before recruiting visits can be made.

Though the requirements are not as stringent as those for graduates, McGillis added that the process would probably affect the early college recruiting period, which runs from the beginning of high school classes to mid-November.

McGillis was not familiar with Baylor's problems, but said the situation "wasn't fair to the student-athlete.

"Generally, the school knows if the students meet eligibility requirements or not," he said.






Cougar Sports Service

Texas' Lovell Pinkney and Mike Adams, who The Sporting News called the best receiving duo in the nation, have been declared ineligible for the Longhorns' season opener Saturday at Pittsburgh.

Both players were found to have accepted the free use of a rented Toyota Camry from friends.

Now they are awaiting NCAA reinstatement, which the school will seek after Saturday's game. Adams and Pinkney must make a $1,000 payment to reimburse the friends for the use of the car. The NCAA can withhold reinstatement as it deems necessary.

It was the university advisory committee that heard the case and recommended the one-game suspension to UT President Robert Berdahl.

The use of the car for no cost violated NCAA rules concerning amateur status. Athletes are forbidden to accept "preferential treatment, benefits or services because of the individual's athletics reputation or skill or pay-back potential as a professional athlete."

Both receivers have had troubled pasts. Adams had just been reinstated Sunday after a 60-day leave of absence and is facing third-degree felony charges for assaulting a police officer and Class A misdemeanor charges for assault.

The receiver tandem combined for 99 receptions, 12 for touchdowns, during last season.






by Frank San Miguel

Daily Cougar Staff

Death in the inner city, especially violent death, is something that is romanticized, played out on movie screens and generally sold as yet another product on the information superhighway. One residual of some such deaths is art.

In some cases, the art is spoken. KRS-One of Boogie Down Productions, for example, often pays tribute in songs to his murdered friend and BDP bandmate Scott La Rock. Some people plant flowers for the deceased. In a select few cases, the dead are remembered by the simple act of painting a memento on a wall, with a few remembrances.

In fact, wall painting has become so widespread, it has come to be classified as its own distinct style of art. All over many urban areas, huge murals adorn blank areas, making sure the dead are not forgotten. A new book captures some of those pieces for posterity.

<I>R.I.P.: Memorial Wall Art<P> is a book of wall art compiled by Martha Cooper and Joseph Sciorra. Each piece pictured in <I>R.I.P.<P> is painted by a New York City graffiti artist on a storefront or some wall as a means of commemorating a deceased person.

As grisly as it may sound, the authors do their best to put such a grim task in perspective.

"The memorial wall transforms personal grief into shared public sentiment by serving as a vehicle for community affiliation and potential empowerment," the authors state in the introduction. "These neighborhood billboards are used to elicit critical examination of the root causes and solutions to the daily onslaught against inner city youth."

<I>R.I.P.<P> is the story of wall art primarily in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Harlem. Cooper and Sciorra's text is primarily to outline the reasons why some pieces are done, why the artists set some rules and, basically, everything the white, middle-class, beatnik-wannabe would have to know about graffiti, lingo and the street.

While many of the artists do it for love and money, it is still a job for them, as the authors point out. For many years, graffiti itself was hardly commercial, but, as drug dealers sought to honor fallen friends and had the money to help do it, the market grew. Now, families and friends often pay as much as $1,500 for a piece of work.

Still, death doesn't exclude anyone from coughing up cash, as the authors observe. Some may work for little or nothing, but others will not.

"Per [one of the artists whose work is in the book] refuses to work for 'crack-head prices,' " they write. "He explains, 'Business is business. I feel bad that it happened, but you don't go to the funeral parlor and say, "Hey look out for us because our loved one has gotten shot." Come on. This is business.' "

The work varies from memorials to muggers and druggers, kids and cops to everyday-life commentary. A few are social commentary. Some are just art. On the whole, all the art is well-done and produced with the intent of holding a memory.

The really troubling aspect here isn't of the books so much as it is of the exploitative character of <I>R.I.P.<P>'s posit. The book is just a documentary by art-types – neither are from the communities where the art is from. The money from the book does not explicitly benefit the community. <I>R.I.P.<P> isn't necessarily a redeeming experience.

Cooper and Sciorra's book is definitely an intriguing work – one that will be read and debated for a long time to come.






by Ivana Segvic

Daily Cougar Staff

Culture is in season yet again. Hundreds of people went to the Wortham Theater Center Sunday to experience the murder, rape, affairs and suffering of opera and the grace, elegance and beauty of ballet. The doors opened at 1 p.m. to let in a crowd of enthusiasts searching for the glamour and freebies the open house had to offer.

Visitors had the opportunity to tour the theater and visit behind the scenes, where the heart of the performances take place. Most were dazzled by the elegance of the "Green Room" that was built around a 6-foot crystal chandelier. The open house also held opera lectures, small ballet and opera performances, free refreshments and an opera for children.

The opera lecture consisted of a slide show and a short synopsis of upcoming operas.

The Houston Grand Opera begins its season in October with the opening of the beloved tragic opera, Verdi's <I>Rigoletto<P>. The opera centers around the court jester; his young, innocent and sweet daughter; and the evil duke. Rape is the core of the drama, and as in most operas, the innocent die.

Bizet's <I>Carmen<P>, a French opera written in 1875, opens in conjunction with <I>Rigoletto<P>. This opera, being one of opera-goers' favorites, was not famous when it was written because the audience was shocked by the violence.

Carmen kills with her seductiveness and manages to ruin a soldier's career and get herself murdered. Her famous song, "Love is a bird that has never been tamed," summarizes her heart and her fate.

<I>Harvey Milk<P> deals with triumph, murder and martyrdom, showing the struggle for equal rights, not only for homosexuals, but also minorities.

<I>Porgy and Bess<P>, Gershwin's opera dealing with cocaine, gambling, knife fights and murder, is a real American opera. This opera is more of a Broadway musical, with speeches tying into the music, and may be a performance for those who are not ready to sit through three hours of music.

The 305-year-old <I>Dido and Aeneas<P> will be performed in February. Purcell's opera is the first English opera written and is one for those who wish to see the development and history of opera.

<I>Der Rosenkavalier and Attila<P> will close the opera season in April and May and end the season with a bang.

For those who do not have an acquired taste for opera, but wish to wallow in culture and elegance, the ballet will be starting off its season.

Performances will include <I>Cinderella<P>, <I>The Waltz Project<P>, <I>Ghost Dances<P>, <I>Gloria<P>, <I>The Nutcracker<I>, <P>Don Quixote<P>, <I>Skeleton Clock<P>, <I>Three Preludes<P>, <I>Western Symphony<P>, <I>Pas De Deux<P>, <I>"Haffner" Symphony<P>, <I>Rooster and Sinfonietta<P> and <I>Peer Gynt<P>.

So be it murder and rape or elegance and beauty, the Wortham Theater Center will be bringing another season of opera and ballet. Tickets may be purchased by calling 227-ARTS, and special student prices are available on the day of the performance with a student ID.






by Tom Turner

Daily Cougar Staff

What do you get when you combine a foundation of rock, a few touches of blues, a little bluegrass, various vocal harmonies and just plain originality? In this case, it's Phish. The group has just put out its fifth release on Elektra Records, titled <I>Hoist<P>.

On the band's latest release, the 11 tracks range from light, flowing, ballad-like tracks to straight-ahead, upbeat rock. For <I>Hoist<P>, the band set out to make "a leaner, tighter record with more emphasis on their songwriting craft."

Throughout the course of the album, the four musicians create a unique sense of musical hooks and lures that seem to draw the listener into the music.

Some of the stronger tracks include "Julius," "Down With Disease," "If I Could" and "Sample In A Jar." "Down With Disease" is the first single off the album and is also the first video the band has ever done.

The four-member group is led by vocalist and guitarist Trey Anastasio. Page McConnell on keyboards and vocals, Mike Gordon on bass and vocals, and John "Greasy Fizeek" Fishman on drums and vocals fill out the rest of Phish.

On this album, several guest musicians appear on a number of the tracks. In the opening track, "Julius," the Tower of Power horn section and the Rickey Grundy Gospel Chorale, from south L.A., make an appearance. Also, Bela Fleck contributes his workings on the banjo in "Scent of A Mule" and "Lifeboy."

Along with <I>Hoist<P>, Phish has four previous albums also under the Elektra label: <I>Rift<P> (1993); <I>A Picture of Nectar<P> (1992); <I>Lawn Boy<P> (1992); and <I>Junta<P> (1992).

In talking about <I>Hoist<P> compared with the band's previous work, Anastasio said, "This time, we just decided to relax and let things happen. The only thing on our agenda was to have a good time and make a good record that people would really enjoy listening to."

Phish is a group that has carved out a niche of its own through the band's original combination of various styles and techniques. <I>Hoist<P> is sure to be pleasing to old and new Phish fans alike.



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