Columnist application deadline extended to March 17

Jesse Abrams-Morley

During a recent conversation about South Florida strippers, mygood friend from high school, David Rutenberg, made a statementthat caught me by surprise.

“Jesse,” he said, “no one has ever accused you of having highstandards.”

In an effort to improve that image, I’m now calling for fivesuperbly talented, witty, insightful and intelligent columnists –and a few cartoonists of the same caliber — to be part of SpringQuarter’s Forum page. Northwestern students, faculty and Evanstonresidents are invited to apply.

Four of these columnists will write weekly about various campus,local, national and international topics, bringing their insightsto the issues students supposedly care about.

And — if there’s someone up to the challenge — one columnistwill write about the politics of Election 2004. Before everypolitical science major starts sending me applications for thisposition, let me clarify through examples what I want in a”political columnist.”

NOT WHAT I WANT: “Man, Dennis Kucinich should have won theDemocratic nomination. It’s all the evil corporate media’s fault.I’m gonna go drown my sorrows in tofu.”

WHAT I WANT: “John Kerry and George W. Bush could learn a lessonor two from Howard Dean about how to appeal to young voters.”

This statement, ideally, would be followed by comments from Deansupporters on campus or in Evanston about why the good doctordeveloped such a following and what politicians need to do to getback in touch with young voters.

See what I’m getting at? Everyone has an opinion. If you want toplay with the big boys, you have to back your opinions up withfacts.

And that goes for cartoonists, too. A good cartoonist does morethan draw pretty pictures — but drawing the pretty pictures isnice, too. The Daily is in sore need of people who can drawcartoons with depth to them, whether the topics are funny orserious.

Before you get nervous, let me assure you that this definitelyis one experience worth going for. The opportunity to express youropinions and insights to your peers every week is something youmight never have the chance to do again. Very few experiences incollege have taught me as much as the quarter I spent on the rightside of this page.

If you’re interested I’ll need your completed application byMarch 17, the Wednesday of Finals Week. If you want to be a generalcolumnist, e-mail the following items [email protected] Two 550-word sample columns, five toseven column ideas and a 200-word bio — we don’t want your resume,we just want something snappy that appeals to us and your futurereaders.

If you want to be the political columnist, make sure at leastone of your writing samples and at least three of your ideas areabout politics. Please indicate on your application if you’d bewilling to be a general columnist if you don’t get the politicalspot.

Prospective cartoonists should e-mail two sample cartoons and alist of 10 original ideas to [email protected] by March12. Or you can drop off your sample cartoons in the Forum boxoutside the newsroom on the third floor of Norris UniversityCenter. Just be sure to get them in by noon on March 12.

All applicants must include the following: name, school andclass, phone numbers where I can reach you at school and home, anda short explanation of why you’re applying.

Oh yeah — one more thing. Bring your A-game. My days of lowstandards are over.

Medill junior Jesse Abrams-Morley will be the Spring QuarterForum editor. He can be reached [email protected]