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NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

There's no use crying over spilt carcinogenic milk

If you think milk "does a body good," think again. As consumers, we have fallen prey to a conspiracy of epic proportions. The truth is that milk is no panacea; it is no health food. In fact, it just may kill you.According to the renowned nutritionist Dr. T. Colin Campbell of Cornell University, the dairy industry has infiltrated "virtually all segments of our society - from research and education to public relations and politics - to have us believing that cow's milk and its products are manna from heaven." Milk has found its way into the government-endorsed healthy diet pyramid and is Santa's favorite drink. The truth, however, is a bit less wholesome. Milk causes cancer. Really.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

SA, RUPD take strides with collaboration

Rice University Police Department caused quite a stir when it implemented its laptop-retrieving policy at the beginning of last semester - in which officers picked up items left unattended within Fondren Library and stored them at police headquarters - to prevent thefts from occurring. But many students reacted negatively to this, saying that RUPD did not inform students when they recovered their items or where they were stored.At the present time, Rice does not have a centralized lost-and-found location. If someone were to lose an item, he or she would have to check many different lost-and-found locations such as the ones in Fondren Library, RUPD headquarters and Rice Memorial Center.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Marfa: West Texas ghost town doubles as desert oasis

There's a fair chance you've never heard of the town of Marfa, Texas, population 2,121, approximately 600 miles west of Houston. But in certain circles, this small town is a big deal. In the 1970s, the artist Donald Judd, best known for his minimalist sculptures, purchased a former military fort in this then-unremarkable tumbleweed town and began transforming the grounds into what is today an art space for permanent and temporary exhibits and a home to a series of artists in residence. Around this compound, now known as the Chinati Foundation, has grown a veritable artistic and otherwise bohemian oasis in the West Texas desert. The Hotel Paisano, built in the 1930s, is Marfa's oldest claim to fame as part of the setting of the movie The Giant, starring Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean. Despite its seeming anachronism, it still impresses with its Spanish villa-styled architecture and lush interior - the bar is as hopping as it was during the famous movie's filming and turns out a mean margarita, too. The only other bar recommended by locals was the lounge in Thunderbird Motel. Luckily, we ventured past its imposingly sketchy exterior, an unbroken concrete wall and unlit neon "lounge" sign, to find a surprisingly cool room, its high walls painted dark blue and covered in larger-than-life-sized portraits of Marfa locals. The "Snake Bite" sounded like an intriguing drink, but the bartender at the time was apparently only filling in for a friend and said that he frankly had no idea what was in it. This hang-up was amusing rather than annoying, and seemed to personify this quirky town's laid-back and welcoming spirit.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Bike-o-saurus rex

Jones College freshman Ryan Le and Jones junior Daniel Hodges-Copple push Jones junior Daniel Antworth off to the races during Mock Beer-Bike Wednesday night, while Professor of Political Science Richard Stoll prays fervently in the background.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Serendipitous musings: Beer-Bike tradition as quirky, unique as Rice

As the Ides of March approaches, students steel themselves for an especially important and momentous event. Summer job and internship searches? Child's play. Midterm exams and papers? Who worries about those? I am talking about what could arguably be the most memorable and vital annual event at Rice, comparable in magic and joy only to Christmas, and, quite possibly, a law or med school admissions letter: I am talking about Beer-Bike.Not only is it a tradition unique and specific to Rice, but Beer-Bike also provides students with a way to rally and connect together as residential colleges and a university as a whole, regardless of major and age - even the Graduate Student Association participates. The event's evolution marks the growth of the university as a whole, and the excitement is like nothing ever seen before. The energy and anticipation in the air replaces the usual enthusiasm and excitement you find at other universities that have exceptional varsity sports programs and makes the experience available to sports fans and bookish types alike.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

BakerShake's Richard III a true thriller

Shakespeare's play Richard III begins and ends with tremendous swordfights and bloody deaths, but the intense psychological drama that plays out in between is even more gripping in this new production by the Baker Shakespeare company. A strong cast featuring numerous Rice alumni and employees excels in the chilling Baker College performance.The play itself depicts the scheming of Richard, Duke of Gloucester (Baker associate Joseph Lockett, Hanszen '91), a physically deformed nobleman whose ambition is to become King of England. He is determined to do so by any means and cruelly divides the other nobles into rival factions before killing them all. Richard's motives are not made clear until he has already murdered several of his foes, adding an element of psychological mystery to the play's early stages.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Senior testing included in new national accreditation measures

Seniors who dreamed that their last semester of college would be filled with constant parties, easy classes and the occasional contemplation of their future may have to adjust that fantasy this year due to accreditation assessments, which began last week. Though Rice was reaffirmed for accreditation in 2006 - all colleges and universities are evaluated every ten years for the title - due to new measures by the federal government, universities across the country are undergoing an examination process to test what seniors have learned in their time at college.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Rice-Baylor scholar earns national recognition, $2,500 from USA Today

Wiess College junior Steve Xu became one of 20 undergraduates nationwide to join USA Today's 2008 All-USA College Academic First Team. The group of selected students consists of undergraduates throughout the country who excel in various fields.USA Today featured the 20 winners who took home $2,500 in prize money. Xu estimates that between 550 and 600 undergraduates applied for the team this year.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Men's first win of 2008 will have to come in fall

On the same night that one Houston basketball team won its 20th game in a row, another dropped its 20th consecutive contest. The men's basketball team's season came to an end Wednesday in a disappointing yet telling way, as Rice dropped a 59-50 contest against the University of Southern Mississippi in the first round of the Conference USA Tournament in Memphis, Tenn. The defeat ended what could be claimed as the program's worst season in its history - not only did the Owls (3-26, 0-16 C-USA) become the first team ever in C-USA not to win a single conference game, but they failed to win any games at all in 2008.However, the dismal record may be a bit deceptive. Prior to their season-ending loss, the Owls lost three hard-fought games during spring break. After trailing by more than 16 points in the first half, the Owls closed to within two points late in the second half before folding 68-60 to the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Fla. Later in the week, senior forward Patrick Britton scored a career high 40 points on 14-18 shooting, but the Owls lost 75-68 to East Carolina University at home.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Willy Week jacks reach outside of the box

Although spring break may have allowed students a relaxing respite from school, Willy Week, which began Monday, more than made up for the previous week's lack of activity. Mock Beer-Bike, the Beer Debates and Willy's Picnic may have enhanced the Willy Week experience, but colleges were the real stars of Willy Week with the many jacks they executed across campus.Late Sunday night, members of Martel College sprayed WD-40 in trashcans filled with water balloons at Brown College to pop the balloons.



NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Commentary: Softball uses forgotten play as means for success

The game of baseball has many great moments any fan loves to see - a do-it-yourself triple play, a successful "daylight" pickoff move or a squeeze like the one our very own Jimmy Comerota executed to perfection against UH. Not only do these plays result in gleeful grins from fans in attendance (and, if we're lucky, Wayne Graham), but since the years of yore, baseball writers have scrounged for nicknames to describe them for the next morning's newspaper readers. From "basket catches" to "worm-burners," all were cleverly coined yet all were easy to picture.But despite following the game since I was a diapered little dude, there was one phrase which had origins outside my experience - the "Baltimore Chop." Cleaving downwards with the bat, a batter aims to bounce the ball off the area around the plate and sky it into the air while the impatient fielders squirm underneath. Rarely is this play utilized; rarer still is its success. Those who unleash the Chop are few in number and must be quicker than a chameleon's tongue on smack, i.e. Ichiro or Jose Reyes.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Women's track uses potent team effort to defend indoor title

Even though track and field is not always recognized as a conventional team sport, the members of the women's track and field team were anything but individualistic in defending their league title two weeks ago at the Conference USA Indoor Championships. Despite placing first in only two events, Rice used 15 top-three finishes to pull out a nearly twenty-point rout to best second -lace University of Texas-El Paso 133.5-114.5 at University of Houston's Yeoman Field House.The Owls will get a chance to rest this week - none of the members earned a spot in the NCAA Indoor Championships. However, more Owls were on the provisional list than in previous years: Senior distance runners Callie Wells and Lennie Waite, senior pole vaulter Rachel Greff, senior sprinter Desarie Walwyn and sophomore Sarah Lyons all posted provisional qualifying times during the season.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

SA, RUPD create lost-and-found site

In response to Rice University Police Department's anti-theft policy implemented at the beginning of last semester, Brown College senator Patrick McAnaney, Lovett College senator Fiona Adams, and Student Association Director of Technology J.D. Leonard worked with Police Sergeant Jesse Salazar and Police Captain Phillip Hassell to create a searchable database of all the items RUPD has taken as well as any other items that are lost or found.McAnaney, a sophomore, first thought of the idea when a friend had his backpack confiscated by RUPD and spent time looking for it at many lost-and-found boxes within separate buildings before finding out that RUPD had it. Adams, a sophomore, said the database would eliminate those unnecessary steps by listing the lost and found items in one central location.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Owls leap to second at C-USA Championships

The men's track and field team has grown by leaps and bounds this year, mainly due to its impressive ability to leap and bound. The Owls flew into second place at the Conference USA Indoor Championships two weeks ago, helped by first-place finishes in both the heptathlon and pole vault. Freshman Shea Kearney cleared a mark of 16 feet, 11 inches, to grab first in the pole vault on his third and final jump of the afternoon.Unfortunately for the Owls, host University of Houston managed to make up those points in other events and notched 152 points to repeat as champions. Rice finished with 116.5, followed by the University of Memphis' 104. The University of Texas El-Paso and the University of Tulsa rounded out the top five with 100 and 88.5 points, respectively.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Tuesday is made for gypsy punks: Gogol Bordello comes to town

Imagine taking the Grandmaster Flash out of Gnarls Barkley and replacing it with a Weird Al vs. Borat bar brawl: Presto, you would have Gogol Bordello, the self-described gypsy punk band that is slated to confuse, enthrall and energize audiences at the Meridian on Tuesday. The eight-piece set of rockers from New York City, by way of custom, furiously blends metallic core rhythms with instrumentation that is decidedly out of the mainstream. Accordions and fire buckets, as well as percussive dancing, are common fare for Gogol stages. This is not your mama's world music. It is no goodwill musical mission, no sweet-voiced cultural petit four. It is impossible to walk away from Gogol feeling like you have witnessed a quaint foreign concert, a Ladysmith Black Mambazo. The gypsy punks do not allow audiences to just listen to the snarling, heavily accented songs and lyrics: Listeners have to meet Gogol head-on and immerse themselves in the bizarre culmination of five continents' worth of musicians, or they will end up running away screaming.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

Texas routs Rice 9-1 at Reckling Park

The baseball team book-ended the last two weeks with a sweep of the Minute Maid Park College Classic and a 7-3 win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi University, but there were a few bumps in the road in between. Not only did No. 15 Rice (9-6) drop two one-run games in a row against Sam Houston State University and Dallas Baptist University on the road, but the Owls were smashed 9-3 by Michigan State University in the opener of the Rice Classic. While the team rebounded with wins over Western Carolina University and Creighton University, the Owls rolled over against the 19th-ranked University of Texas to even the season series at 1-1.The Owls will look to defend their home field once more this weekend, facing Winthrop University four times in as many days, starting today at 6:30 p.m. The Eagles (3-10) have yet to beat a ranked opponent this year, falling three times to the University of Southern California and once to the University of North Carolina. Before the week is over, the Owls will also take on the University of Louisiana-Lafayette at home at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday.


NEWS 3/13/08 7:00pm

After jump in ranking, men's tennis falls against No. 17 Florida State

For the men's tennis team, the confines of Jake Hess Tennis Stadium are a welcome sight. In most instances, that is. The Owls, ranked 13th in the nation, found themselves rudely treated by a visiting Florida State University, which pulled out a 4-3 come-from-behind win last Tuesday. Rice's loss to the 17th-ranked Seminoles came on the heels of a California road swing that saw them drop two ranked opponents. However, those wins sandwiched a 7-0 blowout loss to the No. 6 University of California-Los Angeles on March 5, Rice's first road loss to a top-50 opponent this year.The Owls finally get a reprieve from their strenuous schedule, with an entire week off until their next match - a home contest against No. 26 Louisiana State University next Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. The Tigers have been streaky of late, winning three in a row after dropping a pair of matches to ranked foes, and boast only one player, No. 86 Michael Venus, in the top 115.


NEWS 8/24/07 12:00am

Construction commences

Students moving back on campus this weekend will notice a university far different from the one they left last spring. A number of construction projects at Rice have given the campus the look and feel of a giant work zone, something that students will continue to experience for the next few years. 


NEWS 8/24/07 12:00am

Jones School proposes Ph.D.

A doctoral program in management may soon become a reality at Rice. The Graduate Council unanimously approved a proposal for the Ph.D. program put forth by the Jones Graduate School of Management at the end of last semester, Graduate Council chair Jim Faubion said. If approved by the Faculty Senate, the program could improve the Jones School's international reputation, strengthen connections between the Jones School and other academic departments, and provide new research opportunities for undergraduates.