The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 05, 1993, Page 10, Image 10

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

    Arts ©Entertainment sfe
Anti-porn legislation misguided
Yesterday the Nebraska Legislature’s Judi
ciary Committee heard arguments for and
against LB272 and LB546. The proposed bills
would increase the penalty for store owners’
improper display of pornographic material, and
they would set new definitions for how such
material should be displayed.
According to the guidelines set forth in
LB546, store owners who sell materials which
depict frontal nudity, sexual acts, etc., must
store those materials behind a blinder so that
only the logo of the material shows, or else
shrink-wrap the material with black plastic so
that the cover photo cannot be viewed. These
bills propose toprotectchildren from seeing the
That was one thing that was emphasized
several times throughout the hearing: “Protect
our children from this filth.”
Under the veil of protecting the nation’s
youth, the right wing once again attempts to
censor what can and cannot be viewed, read or
it is acceptable to go after
what one thinks causes the
ills of society. Burning
witches used to be (a)
socially acceptable way of
getting rid of the ills of
— McCallum
owner of Twisters Music and Gifts
-ft -
listened to in this country. Sure, the notion of
hiding this material from kids is a noble one—
and probably justified. But is that the real goal?
LB546 docs not seek just to mask the con
tents of magazines like Playboy, but also says
that any material that may be harmful to minors
falls under this law.
That includes comic books, music record
ings, books and video cassettes. And this is
what concerned John McCallum, owner of
Twisters Music and Gifts. McCallum testified
against both LB272 and LB546.
“It is acceptable to go after what one thinks
causes the ills of society,” he said. “Burning
witches used to be (a) socially acceptable way
of getting rid of the ills of society.’
McCallum said that although he thought the
people in support of such bills thought they
were doing society a favor, they were actually
imposing their moralistic views on others.
“That is unconstitutional,” he said.
The entire entertainment industry recently
has come under fire from family groups who
oppose violence and sex on television, in mov
ies, etc.
The name game
Name presents more problems than benefits for columnist
I am going to legally change my name.
When 1 was a lump of growing cells in my
mother’s belly, my parents were pondering
over what name they should give their first
After hours of painstaking decision, they
decided to name me after a Czech premier. The
man’s name was the local version of John. It
was spelled J-a-n and pronounced “yawn.” 1
have been stuck with that name ever since.
Naturally there are three resulting problems
with that title.
The first is mispronunciation. Anyone from
Germany, the former Yugoslavia, the former
Czechoslovakia or Sweden knows exactly how
it is said. Anyone else is out of luck.
Most people, upon seeing my name, pro
nounce it like Jan Brady’s first name. They
therefore assume I am female.
The summer after my junior year in high
school, I registered for journalism camp. When
the camp started, I went to the registration table
in our assigned dorm to get my room key. My
room was on the second floor.
Name’s Calingcr, I said.
The lady at the table went through all the
keys on the fourth floor.
“I can’t find your name on any of these
keys,” she said.
That’s because I’m assigned to the second
floor, I said.
“Lef me see ... yes, you sure are. But the
second floor is for girls. You’re not a girl.”
And I could have proven it, loo. But I settled
for wailing 20 minutes while I was reshuffled
into the proper room. All because whoever
processed my form didn’t read my circled “M”
for “Male.”
M jan
The second problem is that my name sounds
like the sound one makes when tired. This
means people who think they have a sense of
humor come up to me and yawn. I am disgusted,
but not because I’m insulted. People thought of
that joke when they were 5 years old.
Another aspect of the problem is that my
name rhymes with John and any other name that
rhymes with John.
Thanks to the creativity of my Daily Nebras
kan colleagues, I have an entire section of
bulletin board dedicated to plays on my name.
One picture has me with drawn-on, heart-shaped
sunglasses and a beret. The caption reads:
“Elton Jan.”
The last problem is that, when people finally
do learn to read and pronounce my name, they
often think I am from a foreign country. (Not so;
I was bom in West Virginia — not quite for
There is, however, one advantage. One night,
when eating at a diner with a friend, I saw some
girls sitting at a nearby table. My friend re
marked that, with my name, I could probably
sound like an exchange student from Germany.
I don’t know German, I said.
“That’s OK. You can fake it.”
My friend and I went over to the table and my
friend started to talk.
"This is Jan,” he said. “He’s a student from
Fahrvergnugen, I said. Braunschweiger.
“He says you’re all very beautiful,” my
friend said.
Frankfurter. Schwarzenegger. Berliner.
“He wants you to come home with us to
night,” he said.
Unfortunately, one of them spoke German.
And I didn’t
And so, when I gel the money and the time,
I will go to court and put something differenton
my license.
I don’t know what I’ll change my name to.
Probably John, so as not to confuse everyone
who knows me. Maybe Jon, in order to change
only one letter. Maybe even Rush. . . . No,
probably not.
Anyway, I have plenty of lime to decide.
Jan Calinger is a freshman news-editorial major and
a Daly Nebnokan columnist.
Opera version
of famous play
opens at UNL
The UNL Opera Theatre will present
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” by 20th
century composer Benjamin Britten this
Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. in Kimball
The opera by the acclaimed avant
garde composer is based on the play by
William Shakespeare and, while reorga
nizing the dramatic sequence of the play,
sticks closely to the original language.
The play tells the classic tale of Tour
lovers and a group of workmen from
Athens who stumble into a forestand the
domain of fairies one summer’s night.
The results are some very confusing
and funny romantic situations, with one
unlucky workman having his head re
placed with a donkey’s.
Britten *s music does much to describe
these humorous situations and provide a
sense of desperate romance.
A pre-performance talk will be given
both nights by Stephen Buhler, UNL
professor of English, at 7:25 p.m. in
Westbrook Music Building’s room 119.
The production is directed by UNL
theatre professor Alex Gclman and fea
tures UNL voice students and some guest
artists. The University Orchestra will be
conducted by Robert Emile.
— George K. Stephan
-m or
Modem dance
on tap at Lied
Master choreographer Mark Morris is
bringing his New York-based company
to the Lied stage Saturday night.
—~ The current star of modem dance,
Morris has been called “what Twyla Tharp
was to the 70’s.”
Morris’ troupe is touring the country
for the first lime since his exit as director
of dance for the prestigious Theatre Royal
de la Monnaie in Brussels.
The 8 p.m. performance at the Lied
Center for Performing Arts comprises
five pieces. Pre-performance talks by Kit
Voorhees will begin at 7:05 and 7:30p.m.
Tickets are available at the Lied box
Sunday, Morris and his company will
host classes from 12:00 to 3:30 p.m. in
Mabel Lee Hall and the Johnny Carson
Theatre. At 3:45 p.m., a video showing/
question and answer session with Morris
will begin in the Carson Theatre. An
informal showing of the company’s per
formance of “Gloria” will follow this
session, also in Carson Theatre.
—Sarah Duey
Reading is key to becoming sci-fi expert
“Living in the Future”
By now, after a few excursions into
the future, via SF fandom and science
fact, you’re asking yourselves, “How
can I, too, become an SF guru and
amaze my friends and impress people
at parties (or Star Trek conventions)?”
It’s not easy. I’ve arrived at this
higher plane of existence after a de
cade and a half of voluminous read
ing, hours spent glassy-eyed in front
of the TV, and countless dollars spent
at theaters. I have become a sponge
for all that is the future, training my
ears to perk up whenever I hear a
“Science and Technology Today” re
port come over CNN when I’m in the
So, in a rare magnanimous spirit, I
offer a few hints on “How to Become
an SF Guru and Amaze Your Friends
and Impress People at Parties.”
First, if you’re going to be believ
able when you talk about SF, or even
understand it in the first place, you
have to know about science. Merely
knowing that £=mc2 is not enough,
but it’s a start.
You don’t have to be able to prove
Fermat’s Last Theorem, but you ought
to know about such things as worm
. holes, black holes, neutron stars, brown
dwarfs, time dilation at light speed,
accretion theories of planetary forma
tion, the Big Bang, chaos theory and
other universal phenomena.
It helps to know the difference
between a meteorite impact and a
supernova when discussing why the
dinosaurs died out. Get your hands on
a few issues of Scientific American,
Astronomy or some other such maga
Reading is essential. Read all you
cm check out from the library or buy
at a used bookstore. The classics —
Burroughs, Asimov, Heinlcin, Clarke
— must come first since they are the
foundation upon which all else is built
Then you can be credible and geta
few nods of the head when you say,
“This book is Heinleinian in plot and
execution.’’ I do itall the time and cm
get away with it because I’ve read
Heinlein and recognize his style.
What about ‘‘Star Trek”? A good
ruleof thumb is: Never wear your own
personal set of Spock ears to any
event where you want to be taken
even mildly seriously.
People automatically assume
you’re a geek, someone who can tell
you in a minute the exact number of
nibbles that were in the grain bin on •
Space Station K7, but who lacks basic
social graces.
Even if you have all the overpriced
novels Pocket Books publishes, that’s
borderline, but acceptable. Just leave
the ears in your sock drawer.
The flip side of reading is watching
SF movies — especially the old ones
that USA Network runs at midnight or
on Sunday mornings. Be able to dis
cuss ”2001” and‘The Blob."
And if you want to get some laughs,
just mention “Plan 9 From Outer
Space” and the incredibly bad editing
job or the pie-plate flying saucers (the
string is visible — really). You’ll
See FUTURE on 11