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February 03, 1994 - Image 15

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The Michigan Daily, 1994-02-03

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The Michigan Daily - Weekend etc. - Thursday, Febuary 3, 1994 - 5

.Not a student?

Peace comes to the Middle East,
the jury renders a decision on the
Menendez brothers' case, Tonya
Harding's ex implicates her in the
Nancy Kerrigan attack, and all any-,
one outside of Ann Arbor can think to

talk about with me are my post gradu-
ation plans.
"What are you going to do next
year?" my grandmother asks in a let-
ter. I don't write back.
"You need to start thinking about
next year," my mother declareson the
phone. I slam it down and yank the
cord out of the wall.
I plug the phone back in and call
my friend the last-May-alumna for
advice. "Whateveryou do," she warns,
"Don't watch 'The Graduate."' I go
*o Blockbuster and rent the Dustin
Hoffman classic.
Here's a scene: Benjamin goes to
rent a room at Berkeley. "Are you a
student?" the landlord asks him.
"No," Benjamin replies.
"Well what are you then?" asks
the landlord.
What are you if you're not a stu-
dent? What are you if you're not a
student? What are you if you're not a
student?
"Roommate," I say to my room-
mate, "Roommate," I emphasize,
"What will we be when we're no
conger students?"
"I'll be a grad student," she re-
plies.
"You are no help," I tell her.
An old friend graduated in De-
;ember. She is unemployed and liv-
*.ng in Ann Arbor. "She'll be able to
answer the question," I yell as I call
her.
I dial. She answers. "Old Friend,"
l say, "You are no longer a student,"
TI pause, "What are you?" I say.
She screams into the phone. I hold
the receiver away from my ear and
wait. She keeps screaming. I wait
Tome more. She does not stop. I hang
cp
A different December graduate

visits my home. She has found a job
and moved back in with her parents.
My housemates and I gather around
her eager for news from the outside. I
ask her my question: "Debbie," I say,
"You're not a student anymore," I
say, "So what are you?" I say.
Debbie looks panicked for a mo-
ment, but then remembers and pulls a
little silver box out of her purse. She
opens it, and flashes a stack of busi-
ness cards under my nose. I snatch
one. "Marketing Project Manager," I
read aloud. My roommates make the
obligatory impressed face; I throw
myself on the floor in exasperation.
"But what is that?" I cry.
Debbie collapses on the couch,
her smile breaks. "I don't know," she
whimpers.
I begin to panic. Soon I will gradu-
ate. What will I be? No one knows.
My resources are running out. I de-
cide to contact University Big People.
"I define myself as a life-long
learner," says Maureen Hartford.
"After graduation one is...amem-
berofa very large family of Michigan
alums," says Edie Goldenberg.
"A Michigan education should
teach us to be students all our lives,"
says Walter Harrison.
"After graduation, so called stu-
dents become...members of the UM
alumni community," says Frank Bea-
ver.
"...After you graduate you will
still (and always, if you are lucky) be
a student," says Terry McDonald.
"You are members of the 'Michi-
gan family'...for life!" says James J.
Duderstadt.
I have answers. For the first time
in days I relax. I call my friend the
screamer. "You are a life long stu-
dent," I tell her. She screams into the
receiver. I wait. She continues to howl.
I hang up.
I call my Marketing Project Man-
ager friend. "You are a member of the
University alumni family," I say.
"Does that mean I have to get new
business cards?" she asks dejectedly.
I write to my grandmother. "I am.
going to be a life long student," I tell
her.
I call my mother. "After gradua-
tion, I will be a member of the Univer-
sity alumni community," I inform her.
This time, she hangs up on me.
I go back to my VCR and watch
"The Graduate" a few more times.

-

, .. Ni 4 /A$ fI 5j
The editors here at the Daily hope that where ever you are going, and whatever you are doing for Spring Break, it goes better than

the Griswolds' trips.

Staying away
By SCOTT PLAGENHOEF
Spring Break is upon us. For those not fortunate
to jet down to the islands to enjoy the week off,
things are bleak. Too cold to play basketball. Too
depressing to get ahead on studies. None of your
friends at other schools have vacation this early.
Rent a movie? Maybe, but if you're trying to keep
with a vacation theme the choices may be slim.
If you feel you're missing out on an old-fash-
ioned senior year in Daytona or South Padre vaca-
tion then Spring Break films won't be any antidote.
They are unwatchable and even unrealistic (no
drinking on Spring Break?). They simply play out
as sun-soaked westerns with different pairs of guys
dueling it out for dippy broads with only two
attributes. As seemingly inappropriate as they are,
however, they always reinforce the proper attitude
towards teen sex. The trips south never result in
any success, even if the bikini-chasin' guys enlist
the help of their usually reliable friend, Spanish
Fly. Some wacky situation always conspires to
keep them unsatisfied. Even when Elvis tried his
hand at a Spring Break film, he had no luck. The
KING couldn't even get laid. Instead in the end
some guy falls in love with a virginal hotel em-
ployee admirably working her way through col-
lege rather than taking part in the nutty Spring
Break hijinks.
Ski vacation films are more of the same crap.
Instead of a week's vacation though, it's usually a
whole season featuring some chiseled ski instruc-

from the 'Up All Night' flicks

tor mercilessly hitting on the resort owner's daugh-
ter while trying to convince her father that he ain't
such a bad guy. It's the "Saved By the Bell"
summer episodes in Aspen.
The most popular vacation films are the three
National Lampoon installments. The original, and
clearly superior, follows the Griswolds' trek across
America in the family truckster on the way to
Wally World. The second features the Griswolds
on their way to Europe as lucky winners on the Pig-
in-a-Poke game show. A great opportunity to lam-
poon our fellow Western allies and all we get is that
cow Audrey either sucking face with or whining
about that Johnny kid who beat the piss out of
The trips south never result in
any success, even if the bikini-
chasin' guys enlist the help
of... Spanish Fly.

female strangers. Winner of the Oscar for Best
Original Screenplay, the dialogue is, save the scen-
ery, the whole film. It's sort of a female "Glengarry
Glen Ross" or Merchant-Ivory lite.
If a vacation from reality and sanity is in order.
don't plunk down three bucks to wallow in the
pretension of "The Wall" or "The Song Remains
the Same" again. Get to the Art section (yes, the.
ART section) of the local Blockbuster and rent,
"Salvador Dali: A Soft Self-Portrait." You know,
his paintings - warped clocks, burning giraffes
and crutches everywhere - now see and hear the
artist. Don't be alarmed, this is Dali later in life. It
is nothing like his 1920's surrealist short, "Un
Chien Andalou" (the "Ants! Ants! Ants!" segment '
on Sprocket's "Germany's Most Disturbing Home.
Videos" is rooted in this), though it does show a
couple clips. The entertainment here is not shock
value but pure oddity. The surrealist master muses
in fractured English and recreates his paintings
life-size (but sorry, no burning giraffes), all under
the narration of Orson Welles.
The very best vacation film of all time, how-
ever, may be the most disturbing, "Deliverance."
The classic canoe trip gone bad is a true master-
work of culture clashing and man's instinct for
survival. Sodomy, Burt Reynolds, toothless
rednecks, Ned Beatty squealing like a pig, and that
ugly little kid playing the banjo. If it doesn't sound
like a pleasant combination, it isn't, but don't

Daniel LaRusso in the first "Karate Kid." Ugh,
give us a bodybag. The third vacation is no
vacation at all. Sure the Griswolds - Clark, Ellen,
and the third incarnations of Rusty and Audrey
(Juliette Lewis?!) - are home from school and
work, but they stay home. No family vacation.
A more stately and proper vacation film is
1992's "Enchanted April." Two meek, English
housewives escape their disconcerned husbands
for a month's vacation in a large house with two

scrutinize it,

watch it and enjoy.

Dreams of sun shield from the cold, but Florida does better

Sy JESSIE HALLADAY
As I fought my way across the
Diag against the icy wind and sub-
zero temperatures, two thoughts
bushed me along: "I wish I had been
born an Eskimo" and "At least Spring
3reak is almost here."
As I prepare for the many papers
md exams professors pile on before
/acation, start a new job, and try to
keep up with massive amounts of
reading, I think of the not-so-distant
future when I can lounge on the beach
basking in the Florida sun. And I
mile and press on.
For months now I have been plan-
i ing my trip to Fort Myers, Florida to
tisit my grandparents. I've spent hours
on the phone with travel agents who
toll me they are getting me the best
deal possible. Finally, after much re-
s-arch, I booked a charter flight which
I am assured has only the slightest
I ossibility of getting canceled. (By
rie way, the charter company should
now that if they cancel my flight,
I n coming after them.)
It is a bigger pain to find a cheap
f. ight than I thought it would be.
Northwest started slashing prices, but
wouldn't you know they would black
cut the days when I wanted to make
lay journey to the white beaches and
rolling waves of the Gulf. But once
the hassle of booking a flight was
tnished, my mind was at ease and all
had to do was sit back and dream of
1 ay vacation.
I have lived in Michigan all my
I fe so you would think I would be
u ,ed to these arctic temperatures, but

there is something about 60 degrees
below zero that makes you long for
palm trees and tacky souvenirs made
from seashells.
For some, Florida may not seem
like the ideal vacation spot. I mean if
For months now I have
been planning my trip
to Fort Myers, Florida
to visit my
grandparents. I've
spent hours on the
phone with travel
agents who tell me
they are getting me
the best deal possible.
Finally, after much
research, I booked a
charter flight which I
am assured has only
the slightest possibility
of getting canceled.
you want to hassle with old people
driving at a snail's pace, go to Florida.
If you want to fight your way through
theme parks that are over decorated
with mice, go to Florida. And it may
not be the safest time to head to the
Sunshine State with all the tourist
deaths occurring. If that isn't enough,
there are always the other tourists to
deal with. Let's not forget the grandma

who will comb the beaches trying to
find the "perfect young man" for me.
But despite all these apparent
drawbacks, there is one thing Florida
has going for it; IT'S WARM! And at
this point in my life that is enough.
It seems like the older I get the
more I long for a little dose of sun-
shine come the end of February. Last
Spring Break I went to Kentucky to
visit my grandmother who had been
ill. It was the coldest it had been in
years in Louisville and when I re-
turned my mood was even worse than
when I left. There is definitely some-
thing about sunshine that puts a smile
on my face.
If you take a look around campus
at this time of year, you will soon see
that I am not the only one counting the
days until vacation arrives. (By the
way, there are 16 left. Not that I'm
counting or anything.) People start
walking with their shoulders humped
over. Suddenly people who have been
best friends for years start bickering
like enemies. Basically, people are on
edge. And the only cure is a little time

off.
Now this "time off" can occur
anywhere and people will start feel-
ing better and stop fighting with each
other. But from personal experience,
time off in the sun is much better than
time off at home. Maybe it's that you
don't have to spend half an hour get-
ting dressed to go out into the harsh
elements. Or maybe it's the soothing
sound of the surf hitting the shore that
lulls you to sleep at night. But what-
ever it is has the curing effect that
February in Michigan calls for.
So, Spring Break is a special kind

of medicine for me that no doctor
could prescribe. Nothing seems as
bad or as stressful when I know that I
will be out of here for one full week of
fun in the sun. And hey, if you're just
going home to spend time with your
parents, I'm sorry. But I'm going to
Florida. C-ya!

SPORTS NEWS'
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__________________4.'./'.'.'.//1, .. .. ,N', k 4, 4,/I" U5 H "'M . .'S ' , 11 ' :': :- -

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