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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 3, 1997)
Mindful of change
Permanent open to interpretation
Have you ever noticed that almost
any application you have to fill out
has a place for a “permanent
How do you know that your
address will really be permanent?
It could be destroyed by a fire,
flood or tornado. You could move to
a different address and then your ,v
previous address would no longer be
your permanent address because
your new address has become your
This leads me to further question
what is really meant by the term
“permanent.” Permanent has always
meant that something would last
forever. But how long is forever?
Energizer batteries keep going
and going, but even they do not last
forever. Could plastic in a landfill be
considered something that lasts
forever? Who wants to hang around
long enough to find out?
Humans do not last forever. Is a
lifetime long enough for something
to be considered permanent? Death
could be considered permanent—or
can it? Thxes end when you die —
so they are not permanent.
What about permanent records?
lime takes care of those, as well as
insects and magnets.
Sq what on earth is really
Is change permanent? If some
thing is changing, it cannot be
permanent by definition. But change
itself seems to be the one constant in
today’s world. And if change is
constant than it must be permanent.
But what if a permanent change is
Boy, is this confusing.
My point is everything is open to
interpretation. With so many people
trying to be different, interpreting
what other people are trying to say
or write is becoming increasingly
We have so many words in the
English language that anyone can
twist anything you say to reflect
what they want to heaj:.
I propose we go back to a series
of grunts to reduce confusion. One
“ugh” could express happiness. Two
could represent pain. And an “ugh
ooo-gah” could mean that a very
attractive woman has just passed by.
(No offense meant to the very
attractive women out there.)
Stepping backward is not the
answer though. Communication is
tremendously important to a
person’s success in work, relation
ships or other endeavors.
Being able to get an idea across
without alienating anyone has
become an art form. We have had to
become “politically correct” in our
speech and mannerisms. Has this
helped to reduce racial tensions,
make horizontally-challenged people
feel thinner or improved understand
ing among all people?
It hasn’t happened yet.
Permanent confusion has set in.
How do I address someone different
from myself without violating their
newly chosen title? What is the
politically correct term for an Irish/
Scottish/German/Heinz 57 Cauca
sian Male? Can I still be considered
a middle-aged white man?
There is an MCI commercial
about the Internet where people
communicate “mind to mind.”
There’s the answer. Take away
everyone’s body — leaving just a
But then we would argue about
how size really matters. Oh well,
the thought was nice.
Maybe hate is permanent. There
is certainly room there for a change.
MacDonald is a freshman
electrical engineering major and a
Daily Nebraskan columnist.
The end is nigh
Ridiculous tips for the millennium
“Where are you going to be New
Year’s Eve 1999?” my friend Amy
asked one day.
I struggled for an answer ... the
fabled day still seemed so far away.
All I could picture was the pre
apocalyptic party scenes from '•
Independence Day. ' ,
I’m sure I’ll be out there —
somewhere — living it up. >
I just don’t know where...
It’s going to be one hell of a party
— no doubt about that. Many
countries and metropolitans are
already planning for the big night.
For many, the party doesn’t stop
until after New Year’s Eve 2000 —
the true century mark. (There wasn’t
a year zero.)
But if you pay any attention to
COSMO, you’ll know that you’ve
only got three years to get ready. Oh,
In tree Helen Gurley-Brown
fashion; this article pulls out all the
stops. (Boy, I’m not going to miss
that wrinkled prune!)
Here are some of the highlights
from COSMO’s guidelines for
“Getting Ready for the Year 2000:”
“If you’re planning on starting a
family, it’s not too early to form
Alliances with like-minded potential
So, COSMO women of the 21st
century won’t be judging men on the
size of their stock portfolio but
rather on the quality of their gene
“Pharmacies and surgical-supply
shops eventually sell hand-held
devices that use safe, painless laser
pulses to erase fihe lines and
wrinkles at home. So if you’re
worried about tiny crow’s-feet,
restrain yourself from doing any
thing too expensive just yet.”
Imagine the excuse —r “I’m sorry
hog, I can’t go out tonight, I have to
erase my face.”
“’Rro electromagnetic fields
produce opiate effects like those
induced by many medications. So
cofnethe21st century you’ll be able
to say goodbye to alcohol and
antidepressants! Meanwhile, lay in
no more than a three-year supply of
I can see it now: A group of
college students come together for a
traditional house party. Instead of
lining up for the keg, young men
and women will hook up for a quick
electromagnetic pulse to the pleasure
center. Anybody else remember days
when happiness was three kinds of
ice cream and tying your shoe?
“Melanin cream: to darken the
skin permanently, eliminating the
need to lie in the sun in order to,
achieve a healthy bronze glow.”
And what will happen when -
suddenly, high fashion proclaims the
ghostly glow of the Victorian age the
“The new ideal man? Tough but
The insight blows me away.
COSMO declares “The New Man...
he’ll be a real pal.” Swell, but will
he change the diapers?
“Make your 1999 New Year’s Eve
plans now—even if you don’t yet *
have a date. The start of the millen
nium promises some fabulous
surprises, and he’s just one of
them.” ' 'i
Don’t sweat, there’s still three
years before the millennium, so
don’t panic if you haven’t started
I’m anxious and excited for the
big night, but I’m not going to waste
sleep —just yet—wondering what
I’m going to do when it’s finally
Kennedy is n senior advertising
and broadcasting major and a
Daily Nebraskan columnist
Twenty years. Good God, has
it been that long?
“Star Wars” was originally
released in May 1977.1 was in
the second grade and actually
don’t remember much about the
movie itself, other than seeing the
preview for it at the Starview
Drive-In Theatre at 50th and
At the time I thought to myself
“that looks like a stupid movie,”
and decided not to go see it when
it came out.
Decisions were that easy at
this age. You decided something
was bad just by looking at it —
and that was that.
I didn’t need to eat cauliflower
to know I didn’t like it; I just
Same thing went for cheese
burgers on sesame seed buns,
sweet potatoes and — the big one
— kissing a girl. EWWWWW!
Life was simple. Go to school.
Go to Grandma’s after school for
cartoons and play with my
friends. Get picked up by Mom at
5. Go home and eat dinner.
Watch TV. Go to bed.
People asked me what I
wanted to be when I grew up.
Easy — I wanted to work at the
prison with my dad.
Mom kept talking about doing
homework for something called
college. Oh, that’s that BIG
school downtown for gjpwn-ups;
the big ones that play football on
TV! Sounds like a fun place.
It’s May 1980, about 10 a.m.,
and I was sitting in line at the
Stuart Theatre with my backpack
of“Encyclopedia Brown” books,
eagerly waiting to see “The
Empire Strikes Back.”
Life was still pretty simple.
School. Mess around with friends
for a little while. Paper route. A
little bit of homework. Bedtime.
What did I want to be when I
grow up? Easy — one of those
guys who did the special effects
for “Star Wars” movies!
Then-1 realized I liked
cauliflower and couldn’t even
really taste those seeds on the
cheeseburger buns. I still didn’t
like sweet potatoes, but this
whole “girl” thing started to look
I learned more about college
— it’s school for really smart
people who want something
called a degree. You pay (!) to go
to school and also have to buy
your own books.
May 1983. Eighth grade.
“Return of the Jedi.”
My friends and 1 bought $8
advance tickets to a 4:00 pjn.
show and organized car pools to
get us downtown as quickly as
Life was getting more com
plex, though. Lots more home
work, and most of my friends
lived on the opposite side, of town
from me. And when people asked
me what I wanted to be when I
grow up, I actually had to stop
and think about it.
I still loved cauliflower and
despised sweet potatoes, discov
ered pepperoni pizza and direly
tried to lock lips ‘n’ hips with
any female, willing and attractive
(heartbeat not required but a
Finally got this whole college
thing down—you pay io go to
school for four years, then they
give you your degree. Hey, that
sounds pretty easy! Simple too!
January 31, 1997. Twentieth
anniversary of “Star Wars.”
I’m sitting in the Stuart
Theater, eighth row from the
front, dead center.
It’s quiet, virtually silent —
like a church.
I’m one of those “students-for
life” majors who loves cauli
uuwci mixeu in wim my Kamen
noodles and considers there to be
a chance of a relationship with
any given woman if she doesn’t
spit on me within 60 seconds of
I’m almost through this
nightmare called college, where
students learn who really does
appreciate them — friends,
family — and who don’t give a
damn if they live or die —
(CORRECTION: I’m sure the
administration does care if you
live or die. If you’re dead, it can’t
get your money.)
What do I want to be when I
grow up, er, I mean graduate?
Still a tough question to answer;
my degree will be in English
education, but I would rather
work as a journalist for a newspa
per or entertainment magazine.
Given the above, I’ll probably
be a plumber.
What’s still simple? Friends
and family. The unconditional
love and care has been there long
before anyone had ever heard of
Love and thanks to all of my
friends. I love you, Mom. I love
You’ve all gotten me this far, but
I’m still not going to eat any sweet
Beltz is a senior English
education major and a Daily
Nebraskan senior reporter.
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