Published April 1, 2013
Distorter Lives on in Margie's Basement
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Revolutionizing the Print Industry
by Suoiciled Yllagigam

Walter Melon

The staff of Distorter has had a buzz in recent times and the office is awash in spirits, which is a vast improvement from the sullen melancholy that followed our Editor in Chief’s decision to sell the printing press to pay off her bar tab last year. We’ve all readily forgiven and forgotten her transgressions now that she’s started buying us drinks again. Oh, and the new printing thing, she orchestrated that too.

Just feel this magazine in your fingertips right now - feel the craftsmanship and care that went into its creation. With the entire magazine on the verge of collapse a mere year ago, how did this magazine come about? It was a solution so simple, a child could have come up with it... so that was what we did; we made the children do it. Literally. Children painstakingly made this magazine you are holding right now. Isn’t that exciting?

Margie’s Cottage, an on-campus daycare, has generously partnered with Distorter to keep our journalistic endeavors afloat. Through a few simple modifications of the children’s daily routine, we have our magazine’s future secured. Coloring time has been carefully restructured to allow for copies of each week’s issue to be made by the kids. Set up in the basement of the cottage with blank pages and oodles of crayons and markers, the children are able to work to their hearts content and often even a little bit further.

The route to success in this new printing venue wasn’t without its hiccups. Little Joey Young agreed to talk to me about his experiences in the new printing basement of Margie’s Cottage, but unfortunately his mother has unexpectedly withdrawn him from daycare. I spoke with a child named Carly Rose instead and could really tell how spirited she was about the new arrangement. She was quick to point out, “All we do is color now... I guess I like the coloring.” She went on to explain that her favorite part to work on was the middle section of the magazine: “No one minds if you mess up the articles.” Of course, then I had to ask what her least favorite was: “The Rings. We get yelled at when those aren’t done perfectly.”

Words to really warm your heart. Clearly all the children are enjoying the activity a lot, just as much as we are enjoying the fruits of their labor. It comes as no surprise, given a reaction like Rose’s, that Margie’s Cottage plans to take on even more children. In their efforts to expand, they plan to place a bid in with the school this spring to be the sole production source for all print media, and hope to win the contract by next fall.

There is a lot to say for the efficacy of this production method. We asked economics professor Nikolai Kondratiev about the benefits of bringing jobs to this unemployed market in the work force. He had a lot to say in relation to the economic benefits on both a national and community level. He began by making the comment, “You’re using children to copy your magazine now?! How could you possibly...” and then went on to praise the decision. He even said that we might go a long way towards correcting the national deficit. Oh, but he also mentioned you shouldn’t ask him about this, because he has short term memory loss and might not remember. It’s a real thing, I wikipedia’ed it.

While the vast majority of individuals have shown support for the new printing program, there are a few career dissidents who have felt the need to express their concern about the children’s wellbeing. Deborah Stendardi, vice president of Community Relations at RIT, was quoted as saying, “This is unacceptable. I ... see [m]any way[s] this could be considered a good idea. You are all being reported to the ... peers ... but ... not ... at this time. We will ... not ... have to discuss further.” Anyway, she wasn’t too happy with us but we are going to go forward with the initiative any-who because really, like, 90 percent of the people I talked to thought it was a pretty cool idea.

Margie’s Cottage even has investors interested in helping this new venture expand. Several businessmen from China have apparently expressed interest in the production, hoping to start up similar operations of their own. The Chinese market may be an avenue for Margie to explore as she continues to build and market the new printing facility.

The future of both our beloved Distorter and these young little workers looks very bright indeed. We can only hope that some of them will walk away with a deep love of Distorter that will inspire them to join us on the staff when they grow up and to help feed new designs to a future generation of Margie’s Cottage children. It’s a beautiful and touching cycle that is enriching for all parties involved.

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