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October 8, 2007 | by  | in News | [ssba]

Eye on Exec: Patriotic magpies hate on Microsoft Word

It was a full house at last week’s exec meeting which always means you’re in for a good show.

Nothing much happens but there is a lot of noise and a lot of excitement over who gets to second motions.

If you spend your Wednesday nights arguing over who gets to second Acting Welfare Vice President Reverend Paul Danger Brown’s motion “I move that I sleep in”, does that mean you need to get laid? It makes you think.

For some reason I was in an extremely good mood with the exec upon arrival at the elevator-sized VUWSA Meeting Room. Maybe it was the free soup they gave me in the Quad that morning? Or maybe it was the smell of the pizza they had ordered? Either way I sat down happy and ready to write good things but, as always, take the piss out of them as well.

As it turned out, the exec weren’t too happy with my last Eye On Exec, where I mentioned Brown’s apologies not being accepted by the exec because he’d said via text that he couldn’t be bothered coming, but that was incorrect.

The exec had “received information” that Brown could not be bothered but it was not via text. “Salient misreported something again. Surprise, surprise,” Brown jeered.

Education Vice President Joel Cosgrove also whinged, “I wasn’t nearly as angry as Salient made me out to be.” It was interesting to note that although they were all clearly talking about me they refused to use my name. They just referred to me, in a slightly ominous way, as ‘Salient’. Maybe I inspire so much fear, like Lord Voldemort, that they dare not speak my name. I would like to remind the exec that fear of a name increases the fear of the thing itself.

The exec’s demands for accuracy in Salient also spilled over into things like their weekly minutes, reports and budgeting. I only wish I could be so perfect.

Brown, obviously in the mood for being an accuracy Nazi, condemned the use of American spelling in International Officer Genevieve Fontanier’s report. “Bloody Microsoft Word!” he exclaimed. Queer Rights Officer Rachael Wright questioned whether Brown thought he was a “patriot” for “protecting New Zealand spelling.” Then they were off, all them, talking at once and not listening to each other. I had to hide my face in my book as I imagined them all as giant magpies just sitting there squawking non-stop.

Was I really this bored? Was I really laughing at oversized exec magpies? Or did they put something in the soup? President Geoff Hayward cried for “order” but it seems the exec are very fond of the sounds their own voices make.

While watching Clubs Officer Melissa Barnard slog back the bourbon in the corner it suddenly dawned on me how she gets through these meetings. She gets drunk. I couldn’t hold it against her, however, as it was only halfway through and I was in great need of a strong drink myself.

Then Treasurer Alexander Neilson got mad, packed up his toys and left the meeting early. He slammed the door really, really hard just in case no one had realised he was angry. He was obviously not pleased with how the meeting was going.

The fight against the fee-rise was also touched on briefly by Campaigns Officer Tai Neilson. The exec are spearheading an organised protest against the University’s proposed five percent fee-rise. Neilson believes “anyone who cares” should get involved with the protest this Monday.

All in all, not a very productive meeting for the exec. They talked – a lot – but made very few firm decisions. The constant talking (which I swear has been going on for almost a month) about the rearranging of the VUWSA staff offices is beginning to sound like a broken record with the same things being said but nothing being accomplished. Much like an exec meeting, I guess.

Opinion by Jenna Powell


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