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The Special Magazine Issue 20

The Special Magazine Issue 20

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Published by barbapapa2010
The Special News Magazine - The Canadian Source for new ideas, fads and in your face social and media news and opinion.
The Special News Magazine - The Canadian Source for new ideas, fads and in your face social and media news and opinion.

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Published by: barbapapa2010 on Feb 04, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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 A L L N E W !
 M O R E  H O T  G O S S I P G R E A T  A D V I C E R E A L  L I F E
To Pull Plug
 S P O I L E R S ! 
 Want Brass
TV Viewers
 P I L L O W  F I G H T  L EA G U E 
 S M O T H E R E D  U N D E R  T H R EA T S
he Canadian based Pillow Fight League (PFL) iscoming under harsh criticism from some of itsformer ghters. And their claims may put the fu-ture of the league in serious jeopardy.Among the growing allegations against theleague include; that the girls are being underpaid, overworked,treated poorly and that the ghts were rigged.“I joined for fun, exercise and the hope that together we couldall make the league into something better,” says one ghter who wishes to be referred to as Gerda*.The numerous accusations that have been made to
the Special,
by former ghters, paint a nightmarish picture of the organisa-tion that was dreamed up by musician and designer Stacey P.Case.Case launched the league in early 2006 after watching pillowghts a few years earlier, but according to Gerda, Case has sinceturned the popular pastime into a high rolling slam down.Although Case vehemently denies these allegations to
the Spe-cial
, he does, however, say that the league is small and growing with 25 members that choose to be part of it and believe in it, “Allthat I expect from the girls are a good attitude,” he tells
the Special
 from his studio in downtown Toronto.For Gerda and former ghter Donna-Jean*, they feel as thoughthe problem with the PFL is that Case has lost touch with whatthe organisation was supposed to be about, “I was a big support-er of Case,” admits Gerda. “But as soon as the league started tobecome popular his greed began to take over.Gerda, who fought under Case’s watchful eye from March toNovember last year, exemplies this by saying that the girls gotlittle in return for their blood, sweat and tears.Their adamant confessions to
the Special
are not an attempt attattle-telling, but a small voice wanting to x the league and thedirection in which they fear it is going.But it doesn’t seem that Case is too interested in listening to theformer ghters allegations, “Nothing the league or I did causedthese girls to leave. If they couldn’t get along with others that’stheir fault.”He goes on to explain that each girl gets a cut of ticket salesand that they are no longer paid per ght, “Tickets are $10 pershow featuring as many as 20 ghters,” states Case. ”If they just want their money that’s not how we work. The PFL is built on themodel of fairness.”Both Gerda and Donna-Jean believe that Case’s interest in mak-ing prots, put their safety in jeopardy, “We had to ght in venuesthat had inadequate change rooms and some without air condi-tioning during last summer’s deadly heat wave. Some of the ‘are-nas’ we fought in were just taped off sections of a dive bar withno change room and no toilet paper in the washroom,” revealsDonna-Jean.The girls also tell
the Special
that there was no insurance forghting and if they were injured there would be no compensa-
 T H E  S P E C IA L # 1  F O R  S C O O P S
PILLOW CASE AND POINT:PFL founder and com-missioner Stacey P. Case(right) doesn’t seem ruf-
fled by the growing alle-gations against his pillow fight league. He tells
the league is grow-ing and trying to better it-self each day.
tion for their losses.“Right now we’re doing everything that we can to useprotective equipment and make sure that all our ghterssign the PFL Constitution that prohibits harmful behavior.In Canada the venue covers any liability for injuries. Therehas never been one single serious injury,” boasts Case. “Andbesides if you get hurt in this country we have a free hos-pital system. If these girls get hurt, they’re just going to thehospital.”And although Case says that the outcomes are not prede-termined and not choreographed, the girlsare hard-pressed to buy his claim, “The PFLstarted out all reality but slowly went intostaged events with winners being prede-termined by management,” states Donna- Jean.Both ladies are devastated that the hard work and passion that they put into the league was fornothing, “We invented our moves and characters, droveourselves to the events, made our own costumes and didpress, but he took all the credit.”And the girls feel as though they’ve been duped by Caseand the PFL, citing that they joined under the pretense thatthe league represented a subversive demonstration of per-formance art. But soon realised that it was just about mak-ing money.“The management was always hinting that girls should‘ght harder and wear less’. At the same time we wereasked to compromise our values. Girls were routinely in-sulted and demeaned by managers who repeatedly saidthat they were not pretty enough to move to a TV version of the show,” adds a clearly upset Donna-Jean. “We were con-stantly told we were replaceable. If we missed one of the 2to 4 hour training sessions we would also be let go.”
The Special
has also learned that other pillow ghtersshare the sentiments of Gerda and Donna-Jean but are tooafraid to rufe the cozy bed sheets of the league.In fact, these former brawlers have conded conden-tially to
the Special
that the PFL is in hot water with US cus-toms after sneaking down to New York City for two sold-out shows without work visas.“We just went over the border. My concernis running the league. I leave that up to mymanager,” Case goes on to say that the leagueis presently in negotiations with US insurancecompanies for stateside ghts. And their website brags of upcoming pillow events in a fewsmall towns around America.But while Case and the rest of the PFL continue to makeinternational headlines and drum up copycat leaguesas far away as Boston, Gerda says the Toronto audienceis leaving due to the sleazy treatment of girls and poorlystaged shows.For Case, however, he continues to stick with his PFLmantra and not what former ghters are concerned with,“All that matters to me is three things: style, stamina, Eyeof the Tiger.”But Gerda isn’t buying into it anymore, “It used to be aninteresting mix of people: hipsters, scenesters, fasiohistas,hobo’s. Now it’s creepy old men trying to see naked girls wrestle.”
“If These Girls Get Hurt,They’re Just Going to the Hospital
The best selling sel-help book
The Secret
 has entranced millionso readers around theworld. But critics o thebook slam it as a mar-keting scam, based onschoolyard philosophiesstolen rom old worldreligions. The promiseso 
The Secret
are end-less: make millions, loseweight, even all in love.And according to its au-thor Rhonda Byrne, noth-ing is impossible with hernew discovery.“It’s not new,” lamentsProessor o Theology,David Reed rom the Uni-versity o Toronto. “Peo-ple don’t have a very longmemory when it comes toone religion adopting thetenants o another.”
The Secret
is based onthe laws o attraction:think about it and it willbe yours. It frst gainednotoriety on the Inter-net and is now hockedby sel-appointed gurusand lazy talk show hosts.We’re looking at you Lar-ry King!Proessor Reed saysthat
The Secret
is just anover-marketed, capitalis-tic driven quasi-religion.“It’s an ideology thatdoesn’t understand sac-rifce and views love asvery superfcial.”“It just reenorces whatpeople already believeand doesn’t challengethem to reach a higherlevel o true spiritual-ity,” says Reed. “It makesno attempt to help themdevelop into ully ethicaland moral individuals.”But creator Byrne, a or-mer reality-TV producerin her native Australia,disagrees that positivethinking is a ragile oun-dation on which to builda religion, “I wanted toshare this git with everyperson. It’s up to them tochoose to believe.”The success o 
The Secret
 has as much to do withmarketing as it does theaudience it’s aimed at,say marketing experts.“Its’ readers proess theattitude that they don’tneed some preachertelling them how to livetheir lives,” says mar-keting consultant Cath-erine Tate. “Now insteado religious institutionsyou have religious guru’sselling aith.”Proessor Reed echoesher sentiment, “Thereare no checks and bal-ances, no accountability.At least in a traditionalchurch there is a historicramework or handlingdonations and dealingwith worthwhile causes.”As Tate puts it, “Herpositive thinking mes-sage is aimed at lazy peo-ple who think negatively.She’s like Tony Robbinson Nitol.”
R.D. Shaw &M.A. Tamburro
Photography - Brandon Lim*names changed at request of sources

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