The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Thursday, February 4, 2010 - 3B
Ending mindless eating
David Merritt's inspiration came from the camaraderie of the Michigan men's basketball team.
Hardwood to runway
Former 'M' basketball captain
David Merritt's fashion line
promotes community service
By KRISTYN ACHO
Daily Arts Writer
At Sunday's IMU photoshoot, LSA sophomore
Courtney Cox took a brief break from tweeting
giveaways to describe her unique internship expe-
rience. Like many Michigan students, Cox had
been hopelessly looking for internship opportuni-
ties in merchandising, until she came across the
Facebook fan page for I Miss You, Inc. (IMU), a
brand founded by David Merritt, former captain of
the Michigan men's basketball team.
"Have you ever had someone tell you that they
miss you?" Merritt asked. "It makes you feel spe-
cial. It makes you feel valued."
David Merritt is not the typical self-absorbed
all-star-athlete-turned-fashion-designer. If you're
looking for an entourage or the arrogant swagger
that comes with leading a team to the NCAA tour-
nament for the first time in 11 years, you won't find
it here. Instead, Merritt is so admirably humble,
it's almost frustrating. He just keeps it real - and
stylish. He has everything you'd hope to find in the
. president and CEO of one of Ann Arbor's hottest
up-and-coming fashion lines.
But how did the former hoops player combine
his two seemingly disparate interests of basketball
According to Merritt, he never had any inten-
tions of getting involved in fashion. But his expe-
riences playing basketball with selfless teammates
like School of Public Policy graduate student and
former captain C.J. Lee ultimately became his
inspiration for IMU.
"As a captain, I learned the importance of self-
lessness and giving of yourself to reach team goals
- goals that are bigger than you personally." Mer-
ritt said. "Like watching C.J. Lee come in every day
just to motivate people in order to make the team
as good as it could be. These types of goals are
what's really behind IMU as a brand."
The IMU brand sells T-shirts which combine the
urban style with joy and color. The shirt designs
serve perfectly to illustrate the meeting point of
style and service.
And the IMU brand isn't just a fashion line; it's
a mission statement. Merritt wants each customer
to feel a sense of belonging, value and, most impor-
"We want to make people happy, we want to
make people feel special, but at the same time we
want them to realize that they are unique as indi-
viduals due to their experiences and the communi-
See IMU BRAND, Page 4B
Now that it's a new year,
the CCRB is humid with
the sweat of resolution-
ers. Because the holidays are about
family and add-
layer of warmth
for the coming .4s
we seem to eat
more than usual.
Is it because a
new year means CHRISTINA
a fresh start, and ANGER
the holidays rep-
resent that one last chance to ride a
sugar high before hitting the ellipti-
cal? Or does mindless eating really
stop with the flip of a new calendar?
And how could the start of a new
semester at school possibly encour-
age a new outlook on food, when
cheap pizza joints like Backroom
and Diag Party Shoppe lurk around
Mindless eating is everywhere.
It's a TV dinner on a couch; it's a
plateful of good food while reading
the newspaper. I am a culprit, and
it seems that when I'm at home and
away from my apartment kitchen
I tend to hit the cookie jar. A 2000
study in the New England Journal
of Medicine showed that Ameri-
cans gain about a pound between
Thanksgiving and the New Year,
and rarely shed it. During my
holiday break I picked up a book,
grabbed a sandwich and learned
what I was doing wrong.
"Peace Is Every Step," by Bud-
dhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh, is
all about regaining touch with the
peace every moment offers. It has
a section about eating mindfully,
which suggests that "the purpose
of eating is to eat." I had to quickly
swallow my bite of sandwich to try
and understand this. I eat for ener-
gy, for enjoyment, for camaraderie,
and cannot fathom eating just to
for 10 m
and it w
in the d
best of t
I ate can
never, Hanh's explanation eating. Perfect.
.ch deeper, and fits very well There will be mindless eating,
distrust of New Year's fit- perhaps even more during the holi-
olutions. days and weekends due to stress,
ful eating means think- parties and those Oreo-peanut-but-
at our food, where it came ter-chocolate-covered bites of heav-
d what it will do for us. This en. Dr. Susan Albers, author of the
mean staring at our plates Psychology Today article as well as
inutes, slowly imagining ' her own book "Eating Mindfully,"
ess from vegetable seed to proposed a coping mechanism that
cturer. It means taking just offers a glimmer of hope in trying
nt to understand that every- buttery times. My favorite is to "get
e eat comes from the earth some perspective." How big of a
s us strength. Not everyone deal is this in the overall scheme of
Ito eat, and when Grandma life? Learn your lesson, and move
say that children in China on.
ring, maybe she had some- As Thich Nhat Hanh put it, peace
ere. We don't need to hold is every step. We won't always eat
nd sing kumbaya at every mindfully. But being aware that
at enjoying food for what it mindful eating exists is the first
s it real. step. The holidays are just days on
r a while I tried to eat the calendar, and we should treat
ly, and it was hard. I ate them like it. Eat to eat, not to sup-
Now that school is back in ses-
sion, we've all returned to our
old eating habits, for better or for
ubuy that worse. If the new year means a
OU bu h t strict exercising regimen and the
amnnia Cookie. end of sugar, think again. For me,
it means trying to be happier with
what I'm eating, not necessar-
ily decreasing the amount, even
st by myself, without a book, though they seem to go hand-in-
as boring. But afterwardI hand in most resolutions.
I knew exactly what Ihad That isn't to say exercising takes
t was a bit difficult to pre- a backseat - everyone knows bikini
at the processed sugary bits season is only six or so months
ining hall's Lucky Charms away. Hopefully, we'll still be fre-
rectly from the earth, but quenting the gym, seeing as it's
e to start somewhere. February. January is unstable,
urse, the holidays got the much like the mentality of getting
me, because they are the back on track in the new year. So
imes and the worst of times. cheers to a new semester and a
ndy at the movies and cook- healthy, food-tastic year, and may
ng familial arguments. So you learn to un-multitask and sepa-
do now? Hanh didn't write rate homework from eating.
n about what to do when
eeling mindless. Luckily,
ogy Today published an
sbout coping with mindless
Anger is renouncing all her cooking
possessions and moving to Tibet. To
stop her, e-mail email@example.com.
were honored by the LSA theme
MUSEUM STUDIES semester "Meaningful Objects:
From Page 1B Museums in the Academy," which
officially turned into a theme year
due to continued interest in muse-
I'm watching UMMA trying to um-themed programs.
become a center for the arts," The theme was originally cre-
Munn said. "So we have this muse- ated to celebrate the re-opening of
um really serve as a place where UMMA and the Kelsey Museum
people can come to many free per- of Archaeology, in addition to the
formances and readings and lec- launching of the Museum Studies
tures. That definitely relates back minor.
to topics we discussed in class." "One of the reasons we're doing
Though Fournier and Munn this museum theme year is to
have unbridled enthusiasm for the draw attention to the really rich
undergraduate program, they faced museum sources we have here,"
a major challenge for its maiden Silverman said. "It's not only insti-
voyage: How to accommodate tutions that have 'museum'nin the
graduating seniors who only have name - there's lots of units on
one year to complete the minor. campus that have spectacular col-
"One of the challenges we had lections of all sorts of things."
in this surge with the number of "Many of these collecting insti-
students taking the intro class was tutions students aren't aware of at
that many of them were seniors all," Taylor said.
who needed to finish the require- "Not only the students, but the
ments, including an internship," faculty," Silverman added.
Taylor explained. "So, in October, According to UMMSP Stu-
I started visiting the museums on dent Services Specialist Heather
campus and the collecting insti- Piezga, a University alum, the
tutions, trying to set up as many University is the ideal institution
internships as I could. We ended for students to pursue a Museum
up with a total of 55 different Studies minor, because the oppor-
internship opportunities on cam- tunities on campus and in Ann
pus and in greater Ann Arbor." Arbor are abundant and among
The results of this internship the best in the country.
scramble show how well the new "(The internship opportunities
minor and the existing museums are) comparable to (those at) the
on and near campus complement Smithsonian because of the collec-
each other. tions the University has. Not just
"(The museum staffs are) really in natural history or in art, but ...
excited for the undergraduate stu- if you know anything about man-
dents," said Taylor. "Since most uscript collections, the papyrus
graduate students go abroad for collections are among some of the
0 their internships, there's been best in the world, and the fact that
interest in interns for a long time students are able to work on these
- they want interns, we've got things is amazing," Piegza said.
interns. It works out." "And the thing is, when you
"It's a love-fest," Silverman say 'I worked in the Maps Library
added. at the University of Michigan,'
maybe someone on the street
A BANNER YEAR won't think that's important as
something done at the Smithson-
The new minor program has ian, but people in the field know
also found camaraderie with the how important it is," she added.
museums on campus, as both "Some of our collections, like
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The Museum Studes program covers more than just conventional art museums. It includes theme parks, zoos, arboreta and casinos.
the rare book collection, are just
As for the future of the Museum
Studies minor, there are no cur-
rent plans to expand the program
into a concentration. Silverman
believes that as "soon as you start
forming a major, you start building
walls around it," as only certain
students with specific aims will
take the courses.
However, Silverman and Taylor
both agree that if a significant stu-
dent interest in a Museum Studies
concentration should form, they
would consider creating a program.
But until then, Taylor assures inter-
ested students that they "have plans
for further developing the minor."
Piegza, who also feels if should
remain a minor, elaborated on
what some of these developments
"I hope that maybe in the future
we'll be able to offer more classes,
but it's all based on interest and
that's something that you can't
necessarily predict," she said. "But
I'm extremely optimistic."
Despite the overwhelming
response from the student body,
Silverman and Taylor don't plan
to cut down the program to fit
their original projections. Only
25 students were expected to take
Museums 301 last semester, but 70
enrolled. Thirty declarations for
the minor were expected in a five
year trajectory, but this goal was
reached in the first year.
Nor do Silverman and Taylor
intend to mirror the competitive-
ness of the graduate certificate
program, which only admits 13 to
15 students per year.
"The onlything thatwill limit the
number of students we can admit
would be our resources," Silverman
said. "And so far, the college has
been quite generous in supporting
the unanticipated interest."
But one thing is certain - the.
program will remain as fluid as
its field of focus. The minor will
accommodate the kaleidoscopic
viewpoints that students and pro-
fessionals have concerning the
"This is a great time to study
museums and work in museums.
It makes you think, 'What could
I do to change the field?' because
it's so open," Malzahn said. "It
makes me feel like I can actually
do something because there's so
much going on."
"I think (museums are) a way
to promote intellectual curiosity,
which is something very impor-
tant and that maybe gets over-
looked in formal education," said
LSA sophomore Laura Mason.
"(Museums') relevancy to soci-
ety is not only based on their col-
lections and their physicality and
their preservation, but also acting
as a cultural touchstone where you
can get a sense of your identity,"
Fournier said. "But, in the end I
think we're all just huge museum
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