Monday, November 24, 2008

Eat Fresh: Why Student Newspapers are Always Worth a Look

Hey, guys! Know what are always a good time? Student papers! Yeah!

Some people may feel that university student newspapers can be amateurish, irrelevant, sophomoric and perpetually dissatisfied -- and they can be! I'm not going to argue with you on this one, sometimes reading student papers can be a bit of a headache. But! Wherever I go I make a point of grabbing any student press I come across, alongside the more mainstream news sources, if not for alternative viewpoints then just for the high hilarity that results when a bunch of young'uns throw a paper together without corporate supervision.

That established, let me talk to you briefly about the Gazette. Published four days a week by the University Students' Council, the Gazette has been a fixture of the University of Western Ontario since its 1906 inception as "In Cap and Gown", a handwritten literary newspaper that must have just been adorable. And, like many papers, it contains an opinions section with space devoted to Letters To The Editor and a solicitation underneath for such letters.

Now, this isn't the funny part. (omg you guys they wrote the bad word for doodie in the newspaper lol oh man) We as a culture have been sneaking curse words into print for as long as we've ever realized that we could get away with it, and admittedly I speak from personal experience on this one.

No, the funny part about this setup is that students these days occasionally treat the Letters section the same way that people used to treat it in the days of yore -- as a great place to publicly complain about minor issues and argue with or ridicule others, which honestly is what the section was all about back before this whole 'internet' thing was invented.

Behold as I beheld, from the November 13th issue of the Gazette:

The pressing issues of our times, brought to the forefront by hardhitting analytical review! This letter also works way better if you picture its author finishing it by rolling her chair away from her desk, throwing her head back to the sky and screaming "SUBWAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYY~!" like either James Kirk or Orochi Iori Yagami depending on how big a geek you want to be with the gag.

Now, I'm no big fan of Subway; I was willing to roll with them for a little while back when they had Jon Lovitz onboard, but when they dumped him from their ad campaign I went "pssh whatever" and gave up on them. Why are we picking on Subway when Tim Hortons and their stupid nonbiodegradable cups are a vastly more prominent, more frequent offender? She really likes double-doubles, I don't know, your guess is as good as mine.

(Tim Hortons cups make up twenty-two per cent of litter in Nova Scotia, and the grapevine alleges that it comprises one-fifth of Toronto's waste as well. Oh man, wait -- wasn't it in London where that one woman got fired for giving out a Timbit? Haha, holy crap, it was. Small world! Anyway, I digress.)

So was this the rallying cry that brought a coalition of likeminded ecofriendly folk together to fight the power and take a wasteful multinational conglomerate to its knees? Well, er, not exactly.

From the November 20th issue of the Gazette:

Ha ha! Ouch! Geez, dude. Psychology majors can be real dicks sometimes, I tell you what.

Student newspapers can be real quality entertainment sometimes, and I'm not just saying this as somebody who used to write for one. (I got so many CDs as a volunteer CD reviewer, my goodness. And some of them weren't awful!) Next time you're near a campus paper, no matter which campus it is, grab it and have a look at it; I would be shocked to hear that there isn't a single interesting thing in it, and sometimes you'll luck out and come across a surprise explosion of vitriolic overreaction like the above. Good times await!

1 comment:

W4 said...

When these Subway martyrs learn about corporations who willingly release defective products and about the rocket fuel that the American military dumped into its country's drinking water, their heads will pop like balloons.