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January 23, 2014 - Image 10

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The Michigan Daily, 2014-01-23

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2B - Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

2B - Thursday, January 23, 2014 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

Cultures to collide
in' U' performance

A new rivalry
on campus

Collision to bring.
together a variety of
performance groups
Daily Community & Culture Editor
Collision. From a mosh pit
to the particle accelerator at
CERN, collision is among the
most power-
ful creative Cultural
forces in the
world. Collision
The Uni-T
versity is .
home to stu- Mendelssohn
dents from Theatre
over 100
nations, and Tickets available
even more at the door for $7
which has spawned an impres-
sive array of performing groups
representing their heritages.
But how can we check out this
cross-border breadth without it
becoming a full time job? There
needs to be a little unifying
School of Education Junior
Julie Emra, with a group of
her friends, started the campus
organization Cultural Collision
this past fall to try to bring the
University's international art-
ists within striking distance of
one another.
"We always saw an absence
on this campus of representa-
tion of many cultures at one
performance," said Emra, who

is also a member of the Indian-
American Student Association.
There's Dance Mix, which
includes a variety of student
performance groups, but its
programming doesn't have a
focus on international or ethnic
"I wanted something that
celebrated the cultures, and cel-
ebrated the ways people reach
back to their roots," Emra said.
"I think (music and dance) can
be the best ways to experience
another culture. We can talk
about it, and that's also really
important, but here you're see-
ing these things that are so
engrained, from so far back
- like the Malaysian Students
Association's Lion Dance."
Thursday's Cultural Col-
lision presents work from
K-Motion, Kol HaKavod, the
Malaysian Students Associa-
tion, the Native American Stu-
dent Association, rXn, The
Filipino American Student
Association, the Macedonian-
American Students Associa-
tion, Maize Mirchi, Revolution
and the Amala Dancers. Pro-
ceeds from the performance
will go to She's the First, a pro-
gram that supports education
for girls around the world.
Some students may be
unaware of these cultural
groups, or feel out of place
going to a performance if they
don't have a personal connec-
tion to it. Cultural Collision
wants to make them accessible
for easy sampling.
"It can be kind of like a

sneak peak of all the upcoming
shows," said Emra. "You'll have
a list of all the dates; we adver-
tise for the cultural organiza-
tions. A lot of people on this
campus, if they're not involved
in a cultural organization,
are not very unaware of how
involved other people are. It
also sometimes separates a lot
of cultures, and I really want to
encourage getting to know each
other. All of these perform-
ers are really passionate about
their roots and what they're
doing - their expression."
The show has no guidelines.
Performances can be anywhere
on the musical or movement
arts spectrum. Revolution, a
Chinese yo-yo group, balance
and toss their yo-yos to music in
rhythm, while executing their
own turns and jumps.
"I didn't want to force any-
thing on anyone," said Emra.
"It's a show to express yourself
culturally and if you're going to
express yourself through Kore-
an pop music instead of like
traditional Korean fan dance
or something then that's your
choice, it's just as representa-
tive of your culture."
But Cultural Collision's mis-
sion of slamming these groups
together will likely result in
more than just a lineup of dis-
tinct performances. You don't
have tobe an astrophysics major
to know that if you collide lots
of matter with enough energy,
in close enough proximity, you
can get sufficient creative force
to bang out a universe.

For those saddened by
the lack of football
excitement in the win-
ter, a new rivalry of global pro-
portions has arrived on campus
to channel

all of your
It makes the
of our foot-
ball team
look feeble
and Stephen
Ross's 100


million dollar athletic donation
a footnote. I'm talking about
the opening of Walgreens ... just
a few hundred feet away from
CVS on State Street.
Walgreens is certainly the
underdog in this tale of two
pharmacies. As the company
ranked 37th largest in the world
(according to Fortune Maga-
zine's 2013 ranking), it will be
a long-shot if it wants to bring
the heat to top-dog CVS, ranked
13th largest in the world. These
rankings reflect, in part, the
substantial difference in prof-
its between the two companies:
CVS's $3.8 billion to Walgreens
$1.2 billion. One major contri-
bution to the increasing profit
disparity is a recent skirmish
over prescription contracts.
CVS came out ahead after Wal-
greens ended its relationship in
2011 with Express Script, a pre-
scription benefits manager that
offered discounted generics to
low-income families and indi-
viduals who otherwise couldn't
afford these vital drugs. The rift
resulted in higher costs for many
prescriptions at Walgreens com-
pared to CVS, and in some cases,
led drug companies to abandon
Walgreens altogether in favor of
other outlets.
But it's a new day, and a new
(financial) quarter. The game is
still young. University students
and Ann Arbor townies will have
to choose their loyalties. Admit-
tedly, Charles R. Walgreens,
Jr. did attend the University of

Michigan, and some may make
their decision on that fact alone.
Yet, for many the decision will
not be as obvious as that in the
Michigan/Ohio State rivalry.
I, personally, am not sure
which corporation I want to
win. Will I give my money to
CVS asa slap-in-the-face to Wal-
greens for abandoning Express
Script and preventing many
from accessing affordable medi-
cation? Or will I give my money
to Walgreens now that they have
renewed their contract after
much dissent? Maybe I'll give
my money to Walgreens for its
positive environmental record.
With solar panels powering
many of its stores, as well as the
use of energy-saving lighting,
removal of harmful air freshen-
ers, and selling of recycled prod-
ucts, Walgreens definitely scores
some major points. Of course,
I may also give my money to
CVS because of a lawsuit filed
in 2008 by the Equal Employ-
ment Opportunity Commission
against Walgreens on behalf of
10,000 Black Americans because
of the company's allegedly dis-
criminatory hiring practices.
However, I may also give my
money to Walgreens because
of the deceptive business prac-
tices CVS has used in the past -
encouraging physicians to push
more brand drugs - often at the
consumer's expense, but always
to the benefit of CVS's profit
margin. At the same time, CVS
does have a poor environmen-
tal record, supposedly combat-
ing pollution through waterway
cleanup efforts in Maine on the
one hand, while itself engaging
in improper disposal of its drugs
on the other. Nevertheless, I
never know which company my
consumer activist friends will
encourage me to not shop at, or
which company I'll be asked to
petition against on change.org.
Honestly, it may turn out that
I just go to Walgreens because
it's several hundred feet closer
to my home on the south side of
town. It also has a sexier atmo-
sphere, with cooler lighting
than CVS's suffocating palette.

It's also just the newest thing in
town. And it has Froyo appar-
ently? Decisions, decisions!
Maybe I'll just like littering
the sidewalk in front of Vil-
lage Apothecary and what was
once Village Corner with CVS
receipts more than I do Wal-
greens receipts. And yet maybe
I'll prefer Walgreens receipts
over CVS receipts when wrap-
ping my body in the cancerous
paper for a new "art project"
that pays homage to the prolif-
eration of these corporations in
Ann Arbor with the prolifera-
tion of my cells.
Walgreens has
Froyo? Things
just got real.
It's also plausible that I sim-
ply choose Walgreens because
I've become possessed by the
ghost of Charles R. Walgreen.
It's also plausible that I simply
choose Walgreens because I've
become possessed by the ghost
of Charles R. Walgreen, Jr.... or
both. Equally plausible is that I
choose Walgreens because I've
received a death threat from
the 10-person Walgreens fan
club on fanpop.com if I don't.
At the same time, I never know
when I'll have a prophetic
vision ... or find secret codes in
my alphabet soup ... "C" "V" "S"
... interesting ...
In the end, my loyalties may
go wherever the sale on Baby
Ruth bars happens to be on any
given day.
Nevertheless, I consider
myself a democratic kind of
guy. I'm all in favor of competi-
tion and free enterprise. Which
is why I say a Rite Aid ought to
open in the old Border's build-
ing on E. Liberty. Then we can
really decide.
Bohn is being facetious.
To help him out, e-mail


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