Commentary  Letters: Piss, tuition, and the many faces of Manosij

Smelling pee vs. saving the environment

Re: “McGill takes first steps in male washrooms toward a sustainable campus” | News | Sept. 15, 2008

It is admirable, sustainable, and hopefully cost-effective for McGill to attempt to reduce the amount of water its bathrooms consume. However, I remember many an afternoon last year where I, having drank plenty of liquids during lunch at Bishop Mountain Hall in an eternally flawed attempt to get my money’s worth from an Upper-Rez meal plan, would find myself in the basement of the Birks building, using the urinal.

Those of you who are privileged enough to have had both a class in Birks and the requirements for using a urinal will remember the overpowering stench emanating from that bathroom throughout all of second semester. The University had installed urinals which did not flush, but instead drained the urine somewhere (based on the smell, it couldn’t have been very far away).

As my memory serves, those who, like me, were displeased by the smell recorded their displeasure on the wall next to the urinal. Now, the new urinal system The Daily wrote about is quite different, and let’s hope it doesn’t flood the surrounding area with the inextinguishable smell of piss, because saving the environment is great, but at what cost!?

James Hirsh

U1 Politial Science

You’re good, almost

Re: “It’s time to care about international tuition” | Commentary; “McGill switches gears on cycling Montrealers” | News | Sept. 8, 2008

Last Monday, The Daily published an editorial concerning the hike of international student fees at McGill. Thanks for calling McGillians on the fact that there was little to no mobilization specifically against Munroe-Blum’s $1,000 per year increase. At the very least, SSMU could have notified folks about the issue over their listserv.

However, I would like to correct The Daily on one point: In suggesting that “International students take a cue from their in-province counterparts, who led a high profile fight against the de-freeze of their tuition fees” (emphasis mine), The Daily suggested that the Quebec student movement does not address the issue of international student fees.

To the contrary, last year, the dominant discourse of the student movement was “for a free and accessible education for all,” thus, it included demands for the abolition of international student fees too.

Also, I’d like to draw attention to University Services Associate Vice- Principal Jim Nicell’s comments in last Monday’s issue. In response to questions about the place of cyclists on campus he said: “We’re blocking off more of the campus every year, and we’re growing and moving in a sustainable direction.”

Come on! How vague can he be? I’ve asked around and no one is really sure what was “blocked off” last year on campus for cyclists! If you know, please tell me.

Furthermore, how is controlling bike traffic on campus “growing and moving in a sustainable direction?” In my opinion, a sustainable direction would direct resources to creating bike lanes on campus, and having a car-free campus every day, not just once a year.

Tessa Vikander

U2 Sociology

Totally Freaked Manosij!

I don’t get it. The Daily and I are supposed to disagree and outrage each other, not find the same causes close to our hearts. First, international tuitions. Now, copyright. What next, a movement for Enterprise seasons five to seven direct to DVD? An editorial on why Earl Grey rules? Are you guys channelling me or something? Creepy. But keep it up. I like.

Freaked out,

Manosij Majumdar

U2 Chemical Engineering

Sincere Manosij!

Re: “You gotta fight for low fees” | Commentary | Sept. 15, 2008

Thank you for the history lesson, Dave, but it seems to me no one is quite putting their bodies on the line now that their own demand for non-fees has been met. I wouldn’t – couldn’t – fairly expect it. If my country had foreigners lining up for its universities, I’d be all for milking them to fund my fellow sons and daughters of the soil. I understand the Quebec/Canada situation, but why a French non-Canadian should pay differently from a Korean non-Canadian is one of the mysteries of the universe to me.

We international students are a rather apolitical bunch (this is anecdotal; don’t ask for a survey report, but I probably know about 100 internationals here), and our concerns revolve mainly around get in, get a degree, get out. Our choice is simply the best value-for-money, and if American or British universities were to cut their international tuition enough (and that would be another mystery of the universe), McGill could find itself observing a mass movement of a different kind. Right now, McGill is simply less of a leech than other places. As the recent fall of giants (Lehman, AIG, Merrill Lynch… this is giving me heartache) reminds us, the market changes. Where will dear old McGill be when it does?


Manosij Majumdar

U2 Chemical Engineering

Geeky Manosij!

Re: “Daily-inspired insanity” | Commentary | Sept. 15, 2008

Thanks but no thanks, Devon. I could never associate with someone like you; someone who hates “space aliens” so indiscriminately and blatantly. Even that term reeks of black-and-white, klaatu-barada-nikto-era xenophobia. Sure, the Xindi will attack Earth in the 22nd century, and the Breen in the 24th, but can we ignore the centuries of co-operation from the Vulcans? And how am I to face the antennae of my blue-skinned friends I meet over a glass of Andorian ale every other Friday? Narrow-minded anthroposupremacists like you are the reason the Romulans are so suspicious of us.

And I thought The McGill Daily didn’t publish hateful letters. No more doses of obscure Star Trek fanboy references for you! From now on, I shall stick to Kung-Fu Panda references, my new(est) instrument of torture to make people around me roll eyes and wish they were somewhere else. There is no charge for awesomeness. Or geekiness.

Manosij Majumdar

U2 Chemical Engineering

Just a simple, friendly, quaint suggestion

I would like to remind students (especially first years) that from September 14 to 28 you can opt out of paying certain fees, totaling about $30 per semester. To opt out, go on Minerva/Student Menu/Student accounts/Student fee opt out.

If you’re wondering whether organizations like CKUT-Radio are worth your four dollars this semester, I encourage you to listen to some of their fine programs. I am confident you will be able to make an informed decision.

Karl Tennessen

U3 Science

More letters were received than could be printed in this issue. They will appear on Monday. Send your letters to, and try to cap them at 300 words. The Daily does not print letters that are sexist, racist, homophobic, or otherwise hateful.