Every year in February, when Montreal is a cold, dark and snowy place, the city plays hosts to the brightest students from the top 24 universities of the world. The students come to the John Molson School of Business to compete and to prove their school to be the best in the world. They take the knowledge they've gleaned from their classrooms and apply it to real-life business challenges. This is the John Molson Undergraduate Case Competition (JMUCC).
Case competitions are nothing new to business schools. The case method is a popular teaching tool where students learn to apply their knowledge by applying it to business cases, from real-life past business challenges. This allows them to learn by doing. Case competitions allow for students to do this with live business cases. They work in teams to solve the business challenge and then present their recommendations to a panel of judges who are business executives.
We are only one and a half weeks removed from Bernard Hopkins' record setting performance at the DC Armory. He became the oldest boxer to unify alphabet belts, in the process becoming a lineal world titlist. His opponent Beibut Shumenov, a maverick, regularly chooses to suit up without a cornerman. That leaves him without a second opinion between rounds & no wisecracker shouting out commands as is custom. Only the cutman applies Vaseline to his swellings. There's something to be said about a man gone rogue. In boxing, a pep talk has been known to unleash a running scowl, in the event a fighter is trailing on the scorecards. The score is shrouded in mystery until the final bell sounds, but everybody in the Armory was keeping count out of a possible 120. It seemed that on the night, Beibut was never really in this one.
It's no secret, matchmakers bait their prizefighters into taking (health) risks. Beibut obviously has his reservations about keeping a large entourage. Everything he needs is packed up and waiting for him inside the ring. Even so, it takes a madman to step into the ring unabated opposite a legend of the sport, especially without a team of specialists. Bernard turned 49 this past January and it seems his body is composite gold. Sure his work rate has diminished but great fighters like Bernard make the requisite adjustments to their arsenal as the years pile on. He was once a maverick in his own right, back when he made twenty consecutive title defenses between the ages of 30 and 40. That's a decade worth's of liver shots. In his defense he practices the 'art of not getting hit' and Compubox stats seem to tell the tale: 186 total punches landed to Beibut's 124.
The boxers weighed in at 173 a piece, and ballooned up to 180 the day after a carb-rich meal. At 49, Bernard maintains a 30inch belt size. Beibut is also year-long gym rat. Boxers have been known to purge their bodies in the lead up to a fight but these boys really run the gamut 300+days a year. I'm talking meal planning, cardio, and fight simulation packed into a tight schedule. The hardest part of the lifestyle is being estranged from family. It occurs several times a year, or as often as they sign the dotted line. With a full training camp under his belt, it occurred to me that Bernard had leveled the field on his adversary. With his victory, it remains to be seen whether he will accept a purse bid from Montreal's Adonis Stevenson, owner of WBC belt, as well as The Ring Honorarium. Pride and Prejudice are the two ideals governing the sport. A fighter simply cannot bear the thought of walking away from a challenge. If Bernard accepts, it could spell the very end of an illustrious career. Adonis possesses monolithic power that demands positive regard from its opponent at all. But if Saturday was any indication, Bernard can't be counted out, at least for the next little while.
As for Beibut, the future is unclear, but hardly bleak. Since the loss, talks have intensified but nothing has come of it. Odds are he faces a fighter just short of contention. Maybe he wallows in the mid-table for a while. But if his multi-fight contract with Showbox is any indication, we haven't seen the last of him on North American soil.
by Guillaume Morissette
Guillaume dodges the sophomore slump with his latest, New Tab, a semi-autobiographical take on underbelly city life and crippling self-doubt, two ideas that vary in magnitude. Montreal, as depicted by Gui, is lawless and completely dissimilar to our classical understanding of this picturesque town enhanced by our most famous literary exports. Imagine instead a much rougher appearance, and your favorite neighborhood looted by millenials. Wi-Fi signals are stolen with cash on stowaway. A young man's vision of desire is taken from him. Poor life choices lead to possible bereavement.
A network of relationships is at the core of this 'event'. As is Thomas' view on art for the sake of art. His self-awareness is not only a fundamental issue but also a hilarious plot device that conjures the best of the author's ability to alleviate and make sense of sadness.
The characters are intentionally homogenous to highlight Thomas' character. Shannon is especially well written. Her humorous quips in light of other more pressing issues are proof that Facebook chat is fast becoming a literary pastiche.
This is Guillaume's first full-length novel published through Véhicule Press. Guillaume's brand potential has almost overshadowed his overall end product, which raises important questions about the nature and the structure of Quebec's literary landscape. But his work far surpasses that, and its target audience is all consuming and ever expanding. Guillaume's anxiety is very much enjoyable as a second hand experience. If you happen to live in the Montreal area, you should try and hear him read a portion of New Tab while the getting is good.
Last summer, Montreal inaugurated its very first MURAL festival. Spanning over a period of three days, locals and tourists flocked towards boulevard Saint-Laurent as artists showcased over 20 unique street art murals. With the positive feedback garnered from last years festival, Montreal is set to host MURAL for a second time. If you plan to check out this epic festival, here's a list of Montreal street artists to keep an eye out for this summer.
Bravo, to my fellow Quebecers for overthrowing a government that has misrepresented and disrespected the values of its citizens. On April 7th 2014 Quebecers once again decided that the queen was doing an awful job. And so, in typical fashion--off with her head! By "queen" I'm referring to Quebec's fallen Premier Pauline Marois.
All photos in this post are courtesy of Adam Castonguay Photography
I attended a private event at La Champagnerie on Monday, February 17th as part of the John Molson Undergraduate Case Competition (read more). For those interested in hosting an event there, I would not recommend having over 150 people as we were 160 and it was completely packed. Both restaurant and bar, La Champagnerie is beautifully located on rue Saint-Paul in Old Montreal, literally across the street from Marche Bonsecours. It's a great place to take tourists!
The space itself is very cool. There are two bars and two semi-levels. The main bar is in the centre of the main room and is surrounded by small tables to the side where you can sit in small groups. At the back of the venue, there is a second level with a second bar and large booths that are perfect for getting bottle service with a group of friends. The front end of the restaurant offers little windowed alcoves that are the perfect setting for a romantic date.
"Trope [the word] refers to a conventional literary device or figure of speech in which elements within a story plot, setting, characterization, or 'behind the scenes' of a fanwork (or canon source material) are a common concept that audiences are already familiar with and can easily recognize. Tropes are related to the concept of clichés but are not actually the same thing, especially in that they are not necessarily overused to the point of being distracting. Rather tropes are significant or recurrent themes whose universality makes them a convenient conduit for familiar concepts." - Fanfiction Terminology
No matter how small a fandom might be, one can always count on finding at least one trope fic, if not dozens, hundreds, or even thousands more. The fact of the matter is, that trope writing is an inescapable aspect of fanfiction. One would be hard pressed to find a seasoned, or even moderate, fanfiction author that hasn't at the very least written one trope fic. Which is why, when exploring the world of fanfiction, one ought to become familiar with the most basic of tropes. The following review will not only list five of the most popular fanfiction tropes - but five of the oldest as well.
However, before moving on to the review itself, the reader should be made aware of the following terms prior to proceeding with the article.
Cannon: "refers to elements established by the original source material (TV show, book, movie, etc...) itself for either plot, setting, or character developments." - Fanfiction Terminology
Fandom: "refers to the fan-based community dedicated to a particular TV show or other cult-inducing medium, including movies, books, music, comics, and any other canon source material. The term "fandom" can be used to represent either the fans and the multitude of ways in which they follow and enjoy the original source material, or as a generic way of referring to the original source material that supports a fan-based community itself. Fandom includes both the internet presence and real-life existence, and is expressed in many ways including websites, mailing lists, archives, fanart, fanfic, Cons, etc..." - Fanfiction Terminology
The following is a list of some of the most popular tropes in fanfiction nowadays. No matter how small a fandom, it's likely you will find an example of at least one of these tropes - if not more. With them, I've included examples of fanfictions that fall into that particular trope category. In our last post, we discussed the top two most popular tropes: What If Fics, and The Fake Relationship/Mariage trope. In this post, we wrap-up our review of The Top Five Most Popular Tropes. Next post - we begin our examination of Five Fanfiction Tropes That Have Seemingly Been Around Since the Dawn of Time.
3. The Pregnancy/Baby trope is rather self explanatory. One of the characters is either pregnant, becomes pregnant or has a baby/child. The circumstances surrounding this particular situation depends entirely upon the time of sub-trope the author has chosen - of which there are too many to name. The pitfalls of this particular trope is once again dependent upon the particular sub-trope the author utilises, although an overall conscern with these fics is finding a delicate balance between over-exposing and under-exposing the subject. Examples include:
"I Took A Wrong Turn Somewhere (Somehow I Ended Up Right)" By LadyChi: Felicity Smoak made one mistake in her whole life, and his name was Oliver Queen. They had one night together, and then the Queen's Gambit went down. Then she found herself crying in a dormitory bathroom, hoping what she knew down to her bones to be the truth was a lie...Felicity Smoak has Oliver Queen's children.
"Obligations" By A True Dreamer: Choices are made. Secrets are kept. Sides are taken. Nothing is the way its supposed to be, and the person with the power to make it all alright again refuses. Kessi Story.
Five Fanfiction Tropes that Have Seemingly Been Around Since the Dawn of Time:
The following is a list of some of the oldest fanfiction tropes around. Like the most popular tropes of today, it's highly likely that you will find at least one example, if not dozens more, of one or more of the following tropes. In addition to having been utilized in some of the most popular fanfictions around, the following tropes have also managed to spawn their own sub-tropes - some of which are even fandom specific. With them, I've included examples of fanfictions that fall into that particular trope category. In our last post, we wrapped-up our review of The Top Five Most Popular Tropes. In this post we examine the top two tropes of Five Fanfiction Tropes That Have Seemingly Been Around Since the Dawn of Time. In our next post, we shall reveal the last three tropes, and conclude our review.
1. Alternate Universe (AU) Fics "refer[s] to a story of which there is a (often major) plot, setting, or character deviation away from established canon. AUs may be anything, but there are some themes that are quite common in a variety of fandoms such as All Human AUs, Animal AUs, Highschool AUs, and/or Modern AUs, for example. Authors may also create and develop their own unique worlds in which to place familiar characters. Sometimes referred to as Alternate Realities, Alternate Timelines or Parallel Realities, but such precise distinctions are not usually necessary." - Fanfiction Terminology. Examples of Alternate Universe (AU) Fics include:
"we keep all our promises (be us against the world)" By Tarafina: [au - no island] Oliver Queen has no idea what he's doing with his life, but when his father gives him an ultimatum, he has to figure it out. After meeting Felicity Smoak, he finds himself on a new path and his eyes are opened to what happiness really means and how finding it takes more courage than he ever thought he had.
"I Wish The Shadow Would Take Me Away" By pieanddeductions: Wendy Darling didn't think she would ever go back to Neverland. She didn't think she would ever want to. But when things change, and the real world begins to sting, The Shadow returns and takes her hand. This is the story of the deal she makes with Peter Pan, and the consequences it brings to them both.
The following is a list of some of the oldest fanfiction tropes around. Like the most popular tropes of today, it's highly likely that you will find at least one example, if not dozens more, of one or more of the following tropes. In addition to having been utilized in some of the most popular fanfictions around, the following tropes have also managed to spawn their own sub-tropes - some of which are even fandom specific. With them, I've included examples of fanfictions that fall into that particular trope category. In our final post, we conclude our review of Five Fanfiction Tropes That Have Seemingly Been Around Since the Dawn of Time.
3. Backstories explore the background of a particular character. We not only learn about that character's life before they've been introduced in the storyline cannon, but we learn more about them in the canon timeline. For example, character C is more of secondary character, despite her popularity with the audiences. As such, we don't know much about her save a few random facts. The backstory trope allows the fanfiction author to write an in-depth examination of the character. Examples include:
"You Should Have Met Me in 1864" By Shnook35: Set after season 3, What if, after a spell gone wrong, Elena is sent back to 1864 in the middle of the Stefan/Katherine/Damon love triangle? Will she fall in love with Stefan all over again or choose the other brother. Full summary in first chapter.
"The Reunion" By Sandys18: Felicity can't find a date to her high school reunion and Felicity doesn't want Oliver's help. One thing leads to another and they both run into a bit of a problem, thanks to one of Felicity's enemies that she meets at the reunion.