San Diego My kids are considering San Diego State, and I'm interested to see if this fall's Daily Aztec newspaper staff carries on last year's most notable last year's most notable traditions: careless prose and a dependence on sex ads.
Dozens of female students must have considered responding to these classified help-wanted ads:
DANCERS, Spearmint Rhino Adult Cabaret. Great $. 18yrs+
Dancers, bachelor parties, escort service. Make up to $2000 p/wk
NITELIFE. Work at #1 Adult Nightclub. No experience necessary. Earn $500+ a day!
I imagine a student named Jennifer thinking, "Hmmm, that's about a hundred times what I make on work study or flipping burgers, and it can't be too gross, or else the Daily Aztec wouldn't run those ads."
She's remembering the quarter-page ad that read: "JOLAR, bachelor and bachelorette party headquarters, featuring adult books and movies, a 60 channel XXX video arcade, $1.00 peeps, a free XXX magazine and XXX star Selena Steele (She's BAD to you & she's BAD for you!)"
Or some of the others:
HOMEGROWN VIDEO. Sex fantasies can come true. Send in your video! Earn up to $20 per minute.
DEJA VU, where the party never ends. Beautiful girls wear nothing but a smile. $250 Amateur night.
LITTLE DARLINGS, where your barest fantasies begin. Best damn couch dances in the county, you can feel the difference.
Let's say Jennifer used to dream of being a model, a dancer, or a Charger girl. She's blond like the girls in the ads - or could be easily enough. She thinks, "After all, money's the bottom line, or else the Daily Aztec editors wouldn't admit that they run the ads for the money. Holy smoke, $500 a day. NITELIFE, 284-..."
Maybe Jennifer can strip her way through law school, and maybe the ugliness she witnesses won't kill her spirit, and maybe she won't learn to power her dance with methamphetamine. Maybe the Daily Aztec's promotion of strip clubs is justified by the revenue, which supports journalism such as this:
March 31: In a pre-spring break article, the editor in chief writes about Tijuana as a public service so fellow students heading south to party will go prepared. While transitioning from a general description of TJ to the real topic, Avenida Revolucion, she declares that the city offers its residents over 450 manufacturing jobs. I suspect she means there are over 450 factories that employ workers.
In the "Viewpoint" column, a reporter relates her experience in New Orleans during Mardi Gras. Everywhere she looked, girls were taking off their tops and bottoms, and guys were taking off their bottoms, and she loved it, and there's no point having regrets, and she had a ball cutting loose and becoming a free spirit.
April 2: A volleyball article quotes a usc assistant coach talking about player recruitment. "A tremendous amount of parody has developed over the past few years."
I guess he meant parity.
April 3: The cover story gives the scoop on college bookies, regular guys who discovered how to beat the system.
April 8: A classified ad promoting a "bladder buster" at a College Area saloon advises readers to "GET THEIR EARLY!!!"
April 28: The front page reads STUDENT CHARGED WITH SIX COUNTS OF RAPE. A letter to the editor from someone outraged by the "disgusting" ads questions the wisdom of marketing sex in the same paper that often reports campus-area rape.
April 30: The Aztec opinion editor relates that while going about his job, he received a call from Homegrown Video/Xplor Entertainment inviting him to a filming. He goes, fulfills his duty as a journalist, and introduces sdsu readers to Dirty Dave and Pandora, eccentric but law-abiding citizens. A few issues earlier, the Aztec ran a story on a night at a singles' orgy.
May 1: Herpes rates a front-page article, while on the flip side, a Spearmint Rhino Cabaret ad features long-haired, pouty dolls. A letter to the editor from an Admissions and Records employee asks if anyone else finds it ironic that a story about a student masturbating in the parking lot ran beside a full-page ad for "live naked showgirls." The employee wonders if the student was reading the ad while the parking lot offense occurred.
A few issues later, the Aztec responds with a speculation that the Admissions and Records employee might be sexually inhibited.
May 2-4: A Daily Aztec editorial sends a boo to Chelsea Clinton for ignoring the Aztec's invitation and choosing Stanford over sdsu, though it's just as well since she's a brat and wouldn't have met the attractiveness requirement for fraternity parties anyway. The editorial closes with a wish for Chelsea to flunk out.
A letter to the editor questions the wisdom of publishing "trash," replete with tales of "whores, sluts, sleazes, and studs," and suggests that students might as well give up reading the Aztec and leave it for those interested in "hardcore, buckwild, meaningless, dirty sex...pornos and prostitutes."
May 6: A reviewer declares that a certain book has a "stable and seducing plot."
May 8: A letter to the editor asks if the April 30 article about a day on a porno set was intended for "mindless, misogynist men overloaded with testosterone or individuals who see women as nothing more than objects" and asks why the Aztec won't publish anything for readers who "open the paper to the editorial page day after day hoping to find an article that actually engages the mind."
Another letter charges that the cover story, "Officer to Be Tried by Jury," portrayed the rape of a student in a manner that appeared to be "a salacious appeal to prurient interests." He asks if anyone with sense would publish, in the same issue, the rape article and the account of a day on a porno set.
A letter from the chief of university police accuses the Aztec of reporting the rape by a community service officer in a titillating manner, when the article could have enlightened students about ways to prevent such acts from occurring again.
In the single issue for finals week, May 19-25 (dated Wednesday, February 26) an article bemoans the tendency to stress Eurocentric material in English literature classes.
The Aztec claims the ads pay their bills. Articles are chosen, they say, based on what interests students.