Volume 93, Issue 20

October 1, 1999


White man not always the enemy

Ignorance, it shines through

Posters a sign of a ripoff

Tanning reinforces stereotype

Posters a sign of a ripoff

Ahhh, the umpteenth annual poster sale in the University Community Centre. A yearly event surrounded by nostalgia which almost makes me teary-eyed whenever I think of it.

I'm convinced every student loves the chore of beautifying their walls with the use of posters. Hey, why not? It's fun, easy and it's simple, but it's also expensive. After all, pride in one's living space can be significantly increased with the use of the symbolic picture commonly known as a poster.

Posters add ambiance and character to a room. They can conjure tangential memories of some fabled weed-smoking session, or make you laugh at yourself when you realize you actually paid money for them, which brings me to my next point. We're all suckers for the almighty poster sale.

These sales are undeniable cash cows for the organizers. Every one results in a crowded UCC with zombie-like individuals falling in cue like cattle to the slaughter – all for the ability to plaster their already crowded walls with images of cult classic movie stars, or fluffy little kittens. The poster sale is like being stuck in a huge supermarket check-out aisle, where impulse buys make an assault on the unsuspecting shopper.

One immutable truth in this universe is that the student market is always ripe for a poster sale. If there is one thing I have learned in my days as a student, it's that anytime the poster gods want to they can turn the feeble student mind into an instrument of rapacious consumption, stirring them into a frenzied mass of hands and wallets, one emptying the other.

The easiest way to make money, therefore, is to put a shitload of students in an area where a shitload of posters are for sale. The only thing left to do is mop up the subsequent windfall of cash which will undoubtedly appear.

What most students will probably shamefully admit is the fact the exact same posters may be available off-campus for a substantially lower cost. Convenience, it seems, is the students' eternal downfall.

Not unlike a character going through the motions in some Shawshankian dream, the posters on my walls each year serve as a benchmark to how long my stint in London has lasted. There was a time when I decided posters were more important than food, at least for a week, so spending $50 bucks on them didn't dent my conscience. But now, I see the poster sale for what it really is – a cash sucking, budget breaking, advantage taking celebration. It comes around every year and it proves there's a sucker born every minute.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999