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FIJI fraternity house being converted into residence hall

The FIJI fraternity house located on First Street previously occupied by the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity is being converted into a residence hall that will be known as Rawls/Eller Lodge, and will house 64 UA students beginning the upcoming fall semester.

Jennifer Hiatt, executive director of UA Residence Life, said that Residence Life has been in talks with FIJI for the past few weeks about converting the house into residence hall after the fraternity was placed under interim suspension. Hiatt said the on-going investigation is related to the fraternity’s choice to leave campus.

Though there was no available on-campus housing, Residence Life did reach out to the members of FIJI and offered them help finding a place to live, Hiatt said. The members of FIJI who were living in the house have had no trouble quickly finding off-campus housing, she said.

Residence Life has sent out an email to all students waiting on on-campus housing, informing them of the new space, Hiatt said. All students have an equal opportunity to apply to live in the space, she said.

UA officials placed FIJI under interim suspension following allegations from the University of Arizona Police Department’s investigation into the death of Michael Anderson, 19, fell to his death in April while intoxicated.

Following his death, UAPD investigated the fraternity to see if Anderson was in attendance of an unregistered party at the house the night before his death. During this investigation, UAPD found evidence of alcohol being served to minors, drug use in the house and attempts to interfere with the police investigation. The Dean of Students Office determined that FIJI posed a “substantial risk to the university community.”

Kendal Washington White, associate vice president of student affairs and dean of students, previously said she expects DOS to make a decision on the status of FIJI’s recognition before the beginning of the fall semester.

Check back for more updates.

Hallie Wilson named to preseason POY watch list

Junior softball first baseman/outfielder Hallie Wilson was named to the preseason USA Softball Player of the Year watch list.

Wilson is one of 50 softball players on the list and one of 11
Pac-12 players.

In her first two season’s as a Wildcat, Wilson has led the team each year in batting average. She has a compiled a career average of .359.

The list will be narrowed to 25 on April 9.

Arizona softball opens the season at home on Feb. 7 against Southern Mississippi, for a three game series.

College GameDay will be at Arizona vs. Colorado game

Arizona men’s basketball’s trip to Colorado was selected by ESPN for College GameDay Covered by State Farm.

The No. 1 Wildcats will face the Buffaloes on Saturday Feb. 22 at 7 p.m.(MST) on ESPN. GameDay begins at 8 a.m. on ESPNU, then continues at 9 a.m. on ESPN with a pregame show at 6 p.m.
It is GameDay’s first trip to Boulder, Colo. It will not visit Arizona.

Arizona will live stream National Signing Day

Arizona football announced Tuesday that they will host a live recruiting show on National Signing Day, Wednesday, Feb. 5.

The show will be streamed on the Wildcats’ athletic website from 7-11 a.m. MST. Arizona plans to feature each signee and have live interviews.

Along with the live broadcast, the team will be announcing the signees on social media accounts. There also will be a National Signing Day page on the athletic website where viewers can keep track and learn more about each signee.

Later that day at 2 p.m. head coach Rich Rodriguez will have a National Signing Day press conference.

As of Tuesday, the Wildcats had 21 verbal commits and 8 recruits who have already signed with Arizona. Tucson’s Salpointe high school own Cameron Denson is one of the highest rated and most anticipated recruits for the Wildcats.

Arizona high jumper receives national award

Arizona high jumper Nick Ross was named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association’s Men’s National Athlete of the Week.

The senior broke his own school record on Jan. 24, clearing 7-7 (2.31m) and earning a first-place finish at the New Mexico Cherry & Silver Invitational.

Ross’ previous best was 7-6.5 (2.30m), which he set on Jan. 17 in Flagstaff, Ariz.

His new mark is No. 1 in the country and is tied for No. 5 in the world for this year.

The Wildcats men’s track and field team is currently ranked No. 17 in the NCAA. Its next meet is Friday at the University of Washington Invitational in Seattle.

What’s going on in film and television: November 11-15

- Comedy Central has cancelled “The Jeselnik Offensive” after two seasons. The late-night show, which was co-created and hosted by acerbic stand-up comedian Anthony Jeselnik, focused on Jeselnik’s twisted takes on different timely topics. For a cable audience, this was some seriously dark humor.

- Fans rejoice, “Downtown Abbey” has been renewed for a fifth season, which doesn’t come as a surprise, since the finale for Season 4 hit a ratings high by drawing 9.8 million viewers.

- “Thor: The Dark World” made $85.7 million this weekend, blowing the competition away and assertively assuming the number one spot at the box office. That is a more than 30% improvement on the first “Thor” film’s $65.7 million. Unless by some divine act of the cinema gods, “The Dark World” will remain number one for its second weekend, November 15-17. It will run into a buzz saw on November 22, though, when “Catching Fire” drops.

- This is the weekend to get caught up on whatever movies you haven’t seen in theaters. Only one new film, “The Best Man Holiday,” is being released at Century 20 at El Con. The Loft will begin to show “Blue is the Warmest Color,” a French film that took home the top honor, the Palme d’Or, at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. However, the mature and graphic content of the film will not be for everyone. If you haven’t checked out “Captain Phillips” or “Gravity” yet, this is the perfect weekend to do so!

Loft hosts film fest

“Willow Creek”

Directed by Bobcat Goldthwait, who takes a departure from his usual style of dark comedy, “Willow Creek” follows Jim and his girlfriend Kelly as they hunt for Bigfoot. Jim truly believes in the existence of the beast known as Sasquatch, while Kelly is much more of a skeptic. They descend into the deep woods of California, where they encounter much more than they had expected. This film looks like a spiritual, and stylistic, successor to The Blair Witch Project.
Friday, November 8, 7:15 PM

“The Congress”

An aging Hollywood actress, facing a decline in her career in the age-obsessed film industry, agrees to have her image digitized. A virtual performer will control her, and the actress can never act again. In the virtual world, the digital avatar for the actress takes on a life all her own. The film is a mixture of live-action and psychedelic animation with an interestingly intriguing plot. Big names co-star, like Paul Giamatti, Harvey Keitel, and Jon Hamm.
Saturday, November 9, 4 PM

“Winter in the Blood”

This film is presented by Arizona State Museum as part of their Native Eyes Film Showcase, and is co-sponsored by the UA School of Theatre, Film and TV. The film follows a young Blackfoot Indian, Virgil First Raise, who wakes up in a ditch. In his hungover-induced state he sees his long-dead father frozen at his feet. This is just the beginning of the increasingly bizarre journey to find his wife, whom he discovers has left the house, taking his rifle with her. Writer/ Director Alex Smith and lead actor Chaske Spencer (The Twilight Saga) will be present at screening.
Saturday, November 9, 7 PM

“The Nightmare Before Christmas” with Visual Effects Artist Pete Kozachik

No, this is not a new movie (in fact, if you can wrap your head around this, this is the 20th anniversary of the movie!), but this is a personal favorite of mine. If you haven’t witnessed the musical tale of Jack Skellington, Sally, Oogie Boogie, Sandy Claws Lock, Shock, and Barrel, and the rest of the cast of Halloweentown, the fall is the best time to watch! The reason I include the film on this list is that visual effects artist Pete Kozachik, who received an Academy Award nomination for being on the film’s visual effects team, will be present.
Sunday, November 10, 2:00 PM

Cheesy goodness

I never thought I would fall in love with Mac & Cheese the way I did this weekend.

On Saturday, I went to The Hub, and I finally tried the Mac & Cheese that everyone rants and raves about.

This isn’t your typical college meal – this isn’t a cold bowl of Kraft topped with a chopped up hot-dog, if you’re feeling extra gourmet.

When I usually go to The Hub, I stroll in after a concert at The Rialto and order ice cream, another staple of the dim-lit restaurant.

When I walked in this time, however, I was a woman with a mission and I knew I wouldn’t walk out of the restaurant without satisfying my ever-growing cravings for their delectable Mac & Cheese.

It was the most delightful and delicious meal I have ever consumed, and I was very sad when it was over.

The Hub sells three different types of Mac & Cheese, including classic, bacon, and lobster flavored. The prices range from $7 to $16.

I’m writing this blog to do you a favor- if you haven’t tried this creamy bowl of cheesy noodles, cooked to perfection, you need to. This meal deserves a place on your bucket list, among other things like “sky-diving” and “riding a bull.”

Replace a guilty conscious with a full stomach

Typically my Monday afternoon commute to class is a vapid one. I don’t hear or see much bustle during this commute considering it’s the late afternoon. But this past week, I couldn’t help but overhear the conversations of two females, presumably freshmen, walking towards the Student Union.

Coming in at no more than five-foot and 115 pounds, this thinly framed freshman was recapping to her friend what she had eaten that day. “I’ve only had like, a granola bar and yogurt all day.”

Mind you, this was 5 o’ clock in the evening.

“Yogurt totally fills me up,” she continued. “It’s like, 250 calories. That’s basically a whole meal. If I want to maintain the weight I’m at now I need to watch what I eat.”

Being a fashion writer for the Daily Wildcat, I’ve heard countlessly the adage of “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” We live in a world were skinny is preferred over pudgy. But being a food writer as well, I can’t support this.

Sure, the Freshmen Fifteen can actually become reality to some, but don’t try to avoid it by counting calories and skipping meals [read: practicing in borderline anorexia].

If anything, you should be bypassing low carb or low sugar in place of a Highland burrito or a specialty burger from Lindys on 4th. Because the fact of the matter is, you’re in college. And let it be known that you will never have a metabolism like you do now, and you sure as hell won’t be able to eat like you do now either.

As a food writer, I’ve sunk my teeth into full size, carne asada burritos and barbecue sandwiches with extra onions, mustard and chipotle sauce all for the sake of the story. I don’t count calories when I do this, nor do I give a shit as to whether the silhouette of my body frame might be a little more filled out the next time I see my parents.

The best advice I could give any freshmen would be to stuff your face now and worry about calories later. College is about shedding your skin in place of new experiences, but if you’re stuck in a bubble of only yogurt and granola, you’ll never live up college to the fullest.

Films to watch out for in November

As October draws to a close, November draws near and brings with it a good amount of movies to watch out for.

“Thor: The Dark World” (November 8)
Minus the first “Iron Man,” the first “Thor” movie was my favorite of the Marvel movies. The colorful world of Asgard dazzled with visual spectacle.

This time around, a new group of foes, the Dark Elves, are led by Malekith (Christopher Eccleston, the ninth Doctor of Dr. Who) who seeks the Aether to become all-powerful. Adding an intriguing dynamic to the movie, Thor must team up with his brother and Avengers villain Loki, played by tumblr-favorite Tom Hiddleston.

“Nebraska” (November 15)
Sure to create buzz during awards season is “Nebraska”, directed by Alexander Payne (“Sideways,” “The Descendants”). Shot in black-and-white, the film is the tale of old man Woody Grant and his son, David, as they travel across country to claim prize money that Woody is convinced he’s won.

The trailer for the movie registered a tad underwhelming with me, but with the talented Payne at the helm coupled with the fact that Bruce Dern, who plays Woody, received Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival, this is not to get lost in the buzz of the upcoming awards season.

“The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” (November 22)
Although no one on this planet needs to be reminded that there is a new “Hunger Games” movie coming out soon, this series of films can at least pretend to warrant the hype, unlike “Twilight” series.

Despite some minor problems with the original, like a shaky cam that was too spastic, the film was solid, anchored by Jennifer Lawrence’s portrayal of Katniss Everdeen. Adding to the already talented cast is Phillip Seymour Hoffman, who joins for the sequel.

5 Do's and Don'ts for this Halloween

Whenever Halloween fails to fall on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, people take it as an excuse to rage all week long. Well ghouls and boys, make sure that over the course of this week of raging that you don’t commit these party fouls:

1.Rethink the Miley themed costume.
Trust me on this one, no one needs (or wants) to see any Miley VMA reenactments, the first time was plenty. Leave the scandalous leotards and dancing bears at home and let the real monsters haunt this Halloween.

2.Keep the heels on, or leave them at home.
Ladies, when you put your high heels on to go out, you are married to those shoes for the evening. You are in a deep commitment to keep them on your feet the entire night, or at least until the cab ride home. Plus, carrying your heels is a surefire way to get an M.I.P.

3.Dress up and get creative.
Don’t be the lame partygoer that doesn’t dress up at the themed party. Halloween is the only time of the year that you have an excuse to dress as whoever or whatever you want so take advantage of it. Don’t show up without a costume and expect not to get any dirty looks.

4.It’s not funny yet.
Dressing up as the KKK, Hitler, Sandusky, etc., is still NOT funny. You will get dirty looks and potentially kicked out. Hilarity gets points in costume contests but if you’re just blatantly offensive not only will you not win, but also you will be surrounded by a group of people who really, really don’t like you.

5.Have fun.
Kick back, relax, and have fun. You’ve graduated the days of knocking on stranger’s doors asking for candy. You’re an adult now, so go enjoy the bars, parties, and make the mistakes while you’re still young enough to fix them.

Fall is here, go explore the outdoors

With the weather finally becoming nice in Tucson (now that it’s October, not that I’m bitter or anything), it’s time to open the windows and go explore the great outdoors.

For us Arizonans, spending time outside is usually cruel and unusual punishment because for the months of May through September, we spend the time asking ourselves: why do we voluntarily live here? How could we torture ourselves like this?

We have to take extreme measures to avoid exposing ourselves to the ungodly sun rays beaming down on us. This includes donning ourselves in embarrassing bucket hats, carrying towels in the car to avoid burning off layers of skin when we sit down, and making sure we don’t leave anything in our vehicles that may melt (I’ve lost many a chap stick to the Arizona sun). It’s even gotten to the point where I have to wear sunscreen in the car after one summer left me with a seat belt shaped sunburn across my collarbone.

But, alas, it’s this glorious time of year that we sweat out the entire summer waiting for. The days are just perfect enough to lunch outside or walk to school while the nights cast a brisk wind, calling for a light sweater (and we Tucsonans love our sweater weather). So kids, it’s time to get out there and see what the city has to offer.

First stop: Mount Lemmon
If for some reason you haven’t made it to Mount Lemmon yet, you are seriously missing out. Take a friend, parent, sibling, date up to Windy Point and watch the sunrise/sunset and bring a blanket, some snacks, and prepare to be amazed. Tucson is ranked among one of the places to watch a sunset, you know.

Next up: Sabino Canyon
Another Tucson must see. A lot of people in Arizona grow tired of seeing cactus after cactus, rocks and dirt and they end up forgetting that that’s actually not the only setting we have here. Venture over to Sabino Canyon and see the gorgeous scenery filled with rivers, flowers and yes, even trees that takes over the area. It’s a good refresher for those days you just need a little break from the stresses of being a twenty-something.

Saguaro National Park
I stumbled upon this gem last year while doing homework for an online class about plants. I’ve never been huge on throwing myself into the wilderness where bugs and snakes are watching my every move, but this place is knock-the-wind-out-of-you beautiful. Take the scenic drive and park on top of the mountain and watch nature happen. This one of the many places in town that showcase the beauty of the desert and just how lucky we are to call it home.

I'm addicted to Vine

Vine, a social media app that allows users to share and post six second videos, is gaining popularity at a scary rate. Users can waste hours scrolling through moving videos and creating their own.

I, for one, am one of these users. Vine is addictive. I’m ashamed to admit I can easily waste hours scrolling through the obnoxious, yet hilarious, videos shared on Vine– and I often do.

Let’s do some math. Because videos are only six seconds long, you can watch 10 videos in one minute. That’s 600 videos in one hour, which is a pretty ridiculous amount.

I’m not writing this blog to understand why this mysterious habit has sprouted in my soul and has been watered and fed to become my fierce addiction to six-second increments of stupidity. I’m writing this because I’ve always heard that the first step in solving a problem is admitting that you have one.

So, here I am world. I’m addicted to Vine.

We live in an age of fast cars and fast apps. Our attention spans are becoming shorter, and we like quick and easy entertainment.

Vine is quick and easy entertainment.

I have 49 followers and I’m following 79 users. I’ve posted and revined 165 videos, and I’ve liked 292 videos. These numbers do not even come close to the amount of Vine’s I’ve simply watched.

Of the 79 users I’m following, 28 users are “Vine Verified,” essentially meaning that they’re the famous people we all secretly aspire to become.

Popular videos spread like wildfire, and generally involve six seconds of twerking, grinding, ranting, crying, or pain. Don’t ask me why I choose to waste my time this way, and I won’t ask you why you’re on level 430 of Candy Crush.

ICYMI: The UA is getting quite the exposure for drugging Johnny Knoxville

As if Arizona fraternities weren’t under enough scrutiny already, Johnny Knoxville is alleging that he was drugged with ecstasy during a party he attended at an unnamed UA fraternity house.

The “Jackass” star made a short stop to Tucson last month to shoot a promo video for his upcoming film “Bad Grandpa.” Knoxville said that he was drugged during his stay, alleging that someone slipped ecstasy into his beer.

“Someone dosed me with ecstasy, and, after that, the wheels fell off,” Knoxville told TMZ earlier this week. “I wasn’t mad at all. I hadn’t done it since my 20s and I was like, ‘This is awesome.’”

Sporting a cast on his hand during the interview to mend a ruptured tendon he suffered during the party, Knoxville couldn’t speculate as to what caused the accident, but indicated it did occur while he was high.

Knoxville told the story again on Jimmy Kimmel Live earlier this week.

Tucson music and film festival showcases local documentaries

This past Saturday at Century 20 El Con theater, three local documentary shorts were screened: “Transitions,” “Zoom! Tucson’s Late ‘50s Rock ‘N’ Roll Record Label,” and “Taking Charge: The Pauly Cohen Story.”

The first film screened was “Transitions,” a film by current UA BFA Film Production student Keith Wagner. The seven-minute documentary focuses on Keith’s best friend, Dylan Barr, a college student who was a triathlete throughout high school. After a tragic motorcycle accident kills his father, Barr participates in one more triathlon in his father’s memory.

The production values of the documentary are truly noteworthy. Having interviewed Wagner, I knew he specifically rented a specific camera to shoot in slow motion, and the decision paid off in spades, as the well-executed shots give the already-emotional content even more weight. Along with crystal clear audio, the film is technically pristine. This was an emotionally, and technically, resonant documentary.

Produced by Dan Kruse for a master’s thesis in musicology and ethnomusicology, “Zoom! Tucson’s Late ‘50s Rock ‘N’ Roll Record Label” recounts the story of Arizona natives Burt Schneider and Ray Lindstrom (Catalina High School, class of ’59), who, as entrepreneurial high school students, decided to create their own record label, Zoom Records. After seeing local band Jack Wallace and the Hi-Tones at a dance in their school’s cafeteria, they realized, then and there, that they wanted to record music.

The documentary captures the fleeting nature of young aspirations through the eyes of the dreamers some fifty years later. Zoom Records only lasted seven months, yet Kruse captures Schneider and Lindstrom, who are both now roughly seventy, talking with such animated excitement that they could have just seen Jack Wallace and the Hi-Tones for the first time.

“Taking Charge: The Pauly Cohen Story,” is a biographical piece on the famed big band trumpeter who played with the likes of Sinatra, Count Bassie, and Tony Bennett. The film is not afraid to portray the faults of Pauly, and that’s because Pauly is not afraid to address his own faults. Much of the documentary is comprised of interviews and quotes from Cohen himself, who is not afraid to admit that the bravado and bullheadedness required to play lead trumpet worked against him, at times.

It is a remarkable sight to see someone in the twilight of their life (the movie partially centers itself around Pauly’s 90th birthday party) reflect on how they lived their life, for better or worse. Pauly is a charismatic, brash, sympathetic subject, and director Bret Primack does his remarkable story justice.

El Con Theater hosts Short Doc Mix

This past Sunday at Century 20 El Con Theater, multiple documentaries were shown as part of a cinematic smorgasbord.

“Randy Parson: American Luthier” highlights the Seattle guitar-maker who handcrafts all of his instruments for the likes of Jimmy Page, Jack White, and others. Parson’s philosophy is explored, as he takes great pride in creating works of art as opposed to the cold, sterile, factory-manufactured guitars. The tactile nature of Parson’s work comes to life with detailed, up-close camerawork.

The first of two music videos during the segment was “Taste of Disarray” by the Hawaiian alternative rock band Ignite the Red. The video was directed by recent BFA Film Production ’13 alum Jason Sikorsky and follows a young woman in a post-apocalyptic world as she tries to reconnect with her lost lover. Shot in his native Hawaii, Sikorsky effectively transforms the paradise of the islands into a barren wasteland. The video is currently on YouTube.

“Throwing Punches” focuses on Leanne Hindle, a Vancouver, British Columbia martial artist who specialized in wushu who made the transition to all-star Hollywood stuntwoman. As a film enthusiast, the documentary offered a fresh perspective on the industry from that of a stuntwoman. It also touched on the politics and fleeting nature of stunt work in Hollywood. Director Rosalie Miller crafts a narrative that shows Hindle making the switch from career-oriented professional to loving mother.

The biggest surprise of the festival was director Kyle Schneider’s “Rebel Rebel Rebel.” If docs are dependent on interesting subjects to bolster their, then Schneider hit the jackpot with DJ Josh LeCash. LeCash is incompetent, self-absorbed, and, overall, just resides in his own little world. Apart from awaiting what new stunt he’ll do or what ridiculous comment he’ll make next, the documentary provides of-the-moment commentary on DJ culture. Everything about the documentary is professionally done, and I highly recommend it. The film bursts with energy and style. With some searching on YouTube, the entire documentary can be found broken up into different parts.

“La Banda Loca y Sus Chupakuete: Vivo En Portrerillos” was the most “slice-of-life” documentary, bringing a small, local band hailing from Mendoza, Argentina. It was this film that really shows how small, yet vastly large, the world is. That the viewer is allowed to see a local performance outside of a small bar on Christmas Day in Argentina, such a random and isolated event, is truly remarkable. Director Evan Bluestein introduces a political angle with the band members protesting through song about the building of a mine near their home.

The second music video of the segment was “Ghosts” by seven-piece, LA-based Red Circle Underground. Director Arielle Kilker establishes a haunting, dark atmosphere set in the deep woods. With imagery that seems to hearken back to colonial America of the late 1600s, the music video, along with its inhabitants, seem to be held captive by the past.

The segment was concluded with current UA BFA Film Production student Dae Hyun Song’s “Into the Black,” a documentary about astrophotography. Song offers three different perspectives on the field, ranging from the amateur (a student simply going out into the desert and shooting) to the professional (an astronaut who takes photos of the sky from outer space). However, what they all share in common is that they do it simply for the love, not the money. They are all driven by the curiosity to capture the night sky, a sight that not many people will ever be able to see in its proper, unending spectacle.

Five fall flavors that will stimulate your senses

Even though it is still hot outside, fall is quickly approaching. Accompanying Fall are all our favorite seasonal treats. We may not have leaves that change colors, and most of us will continue to wear shorts, but there is no shortage of festive fall flavors in Tucson that are sure to put you in the autumn mood.

1. U Swirl Pumpkin flavored frozen yogurt: For a creamy delicious treat, stop by Uswirl and try their seasonal Pumpkin flavor. If you’re feeling extra festive top it off with some candy corn!

2. Frozen Pumpkin Pie at Einsteins: Conveniently located in the Student Union, this frozen treat is said to taste like pumpkin pie in a glass, blended to perfection.

3.“Autumn in a cup” at Canyon Café: A coffee drink of toffee, caramel, and hazelnut, perfect for a chilly autumn morning (or an 80 degree morning).

4. Cinnamon Roll shake at Fab-U-Life Nutrition: Located on Speedway, right next to Dirtbags, stop by Fab-U-Life for their featured flavor, Cinnamon Roll! Since all their drinks are less than 300 calories, it’s a healthy alternative, and you will still get your fall flavor fix.

5. Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks: The list could not be complete without everyone’s favorite fall beverage, the Pumpkin Spice Latte. To all Starbucks addicts, this is the quintessential fall beverage. All you need is a scarf and some Ugg boots and you are set for the rest of the season.


The best sandwich I've ever eaten

I remember the first time I laid eyes on the Chocolate Iguana, situated on the corner of Fourth Avenue and 6th Street. The purple and green color scheme of the building had immediately attracted my eye, because purple and green usually don’t belong on a subject together unless that subject is Barney.

I knew I needed to invite myself in to the Chocolate Iguana and experience whatever laid inside the purple and green walls- and last week, I did.

The interior is small, but it was quaint, and it was cute. The register was snuggled in between colorful bags of candy and colorful plastic trinkets, and although the space was crowded, it was cozy.

I ordered a Turkey Pesto sandwich, and I’m going to defend this opinion for the rest of my life – that Turkey Pesto sandwich was the best sandwich I ever ate.

Now, I need to make a few things clear. I’m not a food critic, and I’m not Chef Gordon Ramsay, and a small bowl of Mac & Cheese can make me the happiest girl in the world, but this sandwich was an absolute delight.

They had me at “toasted French Baguette.” Slathered with pesto and roasted red peppers, the baguette was cooked to perfection in garlic olive oil and topped with melted mozzarella and thin-sliced turkey.

Today I am sad because I realized I don’t have nearly enough time or money to make the trek down to the Chocolate Iguana and buy the Turkey Pesto sandwich for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Maybe once a week will do.

Until we meet again, Turkey Pesto.

Ten signs we know it's almost fall

Beards: The commencement of No Shave November is upon us, and so are guys with beards. Beards make guys’ faces look festive and cozy. Beards are basically mittens for your face.

Pants: Along this same vein, girls will take the drop in temperature as a perfect reason to wear pants. They’re secretly disguising the fact that they were too lazy to shave their legs in the morning.

Cardigans: Take a look around campus. A few drops in the temperature and students are finding any excuse to shake the cobwebs off of their favorite cardigan.

Infinity scarf: A scarf is a guaranteed way to spice up any outfit. A floral printed scarf coupled with a black knit sweater and dark combat boots is a simple way to dress in fall style.

Leggings: Equal parts cute and comfortable, leggings are all things that are good and right in the world.

Big Arizona sweatshirts: You’re either trying to convince yourself that it’s cold enough to wear a sweatshirt or it’s actually cold enough to wear a sweatshirt.

The electric bill is low: At last, the windows can finally be opened and the amount of air conditioning needed can finally be cranked down a notch or two. Your wallet is probably happy, too.

Combat Boots: Arguably, you can wear combat boots during all seasons of the year. For fall though, they’re especially appropriate. They go great with almost any outfit and they almost convince people that you just trekked five miles to school in the snow, uphill. Both ways.

Midterms: They’re brewing. You might get the occasional sense that you’re collegiate career is slowly starting to be sucked into a screaming vortex of terror — and that’s because it is. You just don’t notice it yet. Brace yourselves.

Pumpkin Spice Lattes: This probably doesn’t need much elaboration, but in case you’re wondering why the Starbucks line is longer than usual, this is why.

Have a little slice of Italy at Vero Amore

Ever since returning from New York, which is arguably the food capitol of the world, I’ve been on the hunt for food that can measure up.

Because Tucson is such a cultural melting pot, it’s never been difficult to find good food here, and I’m generally pleased with wherever I go. I never had any complaints until I left this city and saw the blends of food offered in New York. Take it from me, everything you’ve ever heard about the pizza, bagels, dessert, it’s all true. New York promises much to expect and little to disappoint.

My quest with the inevitable return to Tucson was to find restaurants that measured up. Naturally, I started my all-time favorite type of food and New York’s most notable: Italian. While I do love Tucson, it had some pretty big shoes to fill.

After much wandering and taste testing, I’ve at last discovered a delicious Italian joint here in Tucson, Vero Amore, translated, and rather appropriately I would say, “True Love.”

The restaurant, located on 2990 N. Swan Road, ships all of their ingredients straight from Italy. Their claim to fame is undoubtedly the wood-fired pizza. My personal favorite is the Pizza Margherita which includes a blend of tomato sauce, basil, homemade mozzarella and parmesan. Cooked to perfection, the pizza has the perfect ratio of cheese to sauce and it’s never overcooked (nothing’s worse than a burnt pizza).

So fear not New Yorkers and Italian lovers, there is a pizza here that will save us all.

Just a bit of advice, come hungry and don’t share. Even if you can’t finish the whole thing, trust me, you’ll want the leftovers.