What students are talking about today (Aug. 13 edition)

Drunkorexia, James Holmes and fake guns at U. Alberta

1. Drunkorexia, a diet where students skip meals and load up on the calories in alcohol, isn’t an urban legend as some once thought. In fact, a Canadian clinical psychologist surveyed 230 York University students aged 17 to 21 and found that heavy drinking was more closely associated with dieting than other forms disordered eating, like emotional or impulse eating.

2. The University of Alberta Students’ Union Building was evacuated on Sunday after reports of someone carrying an assault rifle on campus. It turned out it was a paintball rifle and an airsoft gun that were part of a movie shoot. Considering this campus witnessed a triple murder earlier this year, we can understand why students reported what they saw.

3. Canadian electro-pop star Peaches performed to hundreds in a Berlin park to show support for the members of a feminist band on trial in Russia for performing a “punk prayer” against President Vladimir Putin in a cathedral.  Her new song is called “Free Pussy Riot.”

4. If you weren’t energized by Paul Ryan’s speech after he was announced as Mitt Romney’s running mate, here’s a hint as to why. Journalists dug up his high school yearbook and found he was voted “Biggest Brown-Noser” by the class of 1988. That said, at least the Republicans did some vetting this time. Sarah Palin’s 1981 yearbook missives included “hey jerkoff” and “stay sober.”

5. The Maclean’s Blog of Lists has published a post called ‘8 oddball Canadian festivals.’ The list includes the Giant Omelette Get-Together of Granby, Que., Pingfest, a frequent Halifax gathering for Coronation Street lovers, and the Canadian Cheese Rolling Festival in Whistler, B.C.

6. A library at UBC Vancouver has the Douglas Coupland archive in its basement and The Ubyssey rifled through the 26 boxes with some graduate student researchers. It includes a  bejeweled hornet’s nest and other objets d’intérêt from the Vancouver-based author, artist and designer.

7. Many Quebec college students are planning to go back to classes this month (as they are legally required to do). So far, three CÉGEP student associations voted to return. One voted to continue skipping but only if at least 20,000 other students join them. That said, student associations at UQAM, U. de Montreal, and Sherbrooke voted last week to continue their boycotts.

8. James Holmes, the man who shot 58 and killed 12 at the Aurora, Colo. premiere of The Dark Knight Rises, was accepted into the University of Illinois’ Neuroscience program in 2011. His application has surfaced. “Rational people act based on incentives for self-fulfillment, including fulfilling needs of self-development and needs of feeling useful and helpful to others,” he wrote.

9. Bagpipers from Simon Fraser University won third place in the World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow Green, Scotland. SFU teams have won six times. Who knew?

???10. North Korea continues to surprise. An American-trained man and co-founder of the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology is teaching market economics to citizens of the failed communist state. North Koreans are currently studying similar topics at UBC.