Professors Julie and Johnny picture peace

Steve Martin

Lawrence University’s “first husband” Rob Beck takes his “Picturing Peace” project very seriously. Rumors are circulating, though, that Beck regrets making an open call for photographs of peace to the entire campus.
At issue are photographs submitted by art professors John Shimon and Julie Lindemann. According to unconfirmed reports, Beck was heard to say upon receiving them, “What is this shit?”
Julie and Johnny, while a bit hurt by Beck’s purported remarks, responded by issuing an exhaustive critique of Edison School’s fourth grade photographic portfolio.
“Okay, so the kids have a good childlike vibe, that’s cool. They’ve got something to work with,” said Lindemann. “But I feel like all of the photographs just scream ‘classroom,’ or ‘playground.’ I just wish the kids had gotten out a little bit and seen something . I don’t know . a little more unique.”
“Plus, just because some little kid takes a picture doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck,” Shimon added, with a twinkle of irony in his eyes.
Beck first took issue with a Julie and Johnny’s photograph of a woman holding on to a cow.
“A cow!” screamed Beck. “What is so peaceful about a cow?! And the woman, she’s just looking at the camera. She isn’t even peaceful-looking.”
Beck also took issue with photographs of a man in bicycling clothes, a couple of people atop the hood of a car that says “The SuaveMotherFuckers” on it, another woman with a cow, and a collection of photographs of kitschy aluminum Christmas trees.
“I really think they just opened up their ‘po-mo’ portfolio and crapped out whatever was least entangled with copyright restrictions,” Beck allegedly added, before kicking his computer.
According to insiders, this is not the first time Beck hasn’t reacted well to photographic submissions. Submissions from an anonymous e-mail address identified as “campydeltboy69” were submitted to investigators for undisclosed reasons.
Physical Plant personnel, before being fired by the university in order to leave room for additional “energy consultants,” reported discovering a room in the president’s residence that contained photographs of little hands holding each other, trees flowing in the breeze, water running through a brook and other such topics under a banner reading “The Wall of Clichs.”
Beck, however, has denied all such reports. “I think with every photograph of a woman and a cow, of a bunch of drunk girls in a frat house basement, or even of aluminum Christmas trees, we are one step closer to a world of peace and harmony,” he said.