Volume 96, Issue 64
Thursday, January 23, 2003

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Purple Pipe: Derek Rhodenizer
Beth Kerim/Gazette
ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN. Purple Pipe winner Derek Rhodenizer lunges at an innocent camera girl named Beth.

The fencing team is getting a lot of love this week (a full page feature will appear in the sports section tomorrow), but the performance of Derek Rhodenizer of the fencing team deserves recognition, and it comes in the form of the famous Purple Pipe.

Rhodenizer (affectionately referred to as "The Rodent" by teammates, or maybe just Gazetters) impressively beat all comers at the Ontario University Athletics Sectionals on the weekend at McMaster University, finishing first in the individual sabre competition.

The captain of the men's sabre team scored a total of 30 points in six bouts, while his foes could only muster a paltry nine points.

The Pipe holds a special place in its heart for any athlete who carries a weapon of destruction, as in its former days, the Pipe was used to beat off puck bunnies, hookers and juiced-up goons.

However, the Pipe fears nothing and rumours in the athletic world are that it has issued a formal challenge against any of three fencing swords (sabre, foil and epee). It's common knowledge that a plumbing pipe from Canadian Tire (did I just say that out loud) is unstoppable when wielded by an ass-crack bearing plumber.

The fencing team continues their season on the weekend of Feb. 1 at the OUA Sectionals in Toronto.

– Jordan Bell

Kickin' it with a master of the sword

The Gazette
was apprehensive about arriving at the fencing teams practice – they do have swords and all. But eventually we got enough balls and sat down with Purple Pipe winner Derek Rhodenizer to discuss some sporting topics.

Who is going to win the Super Bowl this year?

The Raiders will win because they're crazy and they're representing old power.

What's your favourite sport besides fencing?

Volleyball. I played volleyball all through high school and intramurals in university.

Do you have any pre-fencing rituals?

I wear the same underwear [hopefully washed] and same shirt every bout.

What's better, being on the fencing team or writing for The Gazette (Derek wrote for The Gazette last semester)?

They're two completely different things – writing is something I really enjoyed doing, but fencing is something I have a passion for.

Who would win in a fencing match between Zorro and The Count of Monte Cristo?

Zorro has the form and the quality tactics, so no doubt it would be Zorro.

What's the strangest thing that has happened to you in a bout?

Sometimes you get to know the other competitors on the circuit. One time I was beating a guy and we knew each other pretty well. As we went by each other at the end of one of the points, I unplugged his electric [tool that registers points], so, for the next point, his electric wouldn't work and they couldn't figure out why.

If you weren't fencing, what would you be doing?

Anything they would take me in. I came here wanting to play volleyball, tried out and got cut. I was trying to find a sport to play because I wanted to play a varsity sport. Paul Simms [a fellow fencer] liked my build and needed a fourth guy for the sabre team.

– Jordan Bell


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