X-Files Stars Appear At Friendship Skills Seminar

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Vol 30 Issue 15

Reedsburg Chamber Of Commerce:'Come Grow With Us'

REEDSBURG, OH—According to the Reedsburg Chamber of Commerce, the small Central Ohio town is a great place to relocate a family or business. "Reedsburg Is On The Grow!" said Chamber of Commerce President Fred Frisch, unveiling Reedsburg's new slogan. Frisch added that if you visit Reedsburg, "You'll Like What You See" as, with its low crime rate, clean water and great schools, the town is "A Perfect 10!" Frisch then broke down in tears, adding, "Please move here. The county really needs the tax revenue. We're desperate."

Single-Parent Families Get 'A' Rating ,From Drug Kingpin

ST. LOUIS—Area drug lord Darryl "Cootie-Fish" Jackson gave an "A" rating to single-parent families Monday. "A child raised by one parent is more likely to rebel," Jackson said. "For me, that's great for business." He also commended the nation's moral decay in recent years. "I applaud this decay, and I hope to fill this moral vacuum with drugs." The "A" award was presented at the corner of Third and Dempsey near Fat Sam's Liquors. Receiving "F" grades from Jackson were the St. Louis Police Department, Sesame Street and NBC, for the network's "The More You Know" public-service messages.

Claire Danes Fantasized About

VAN NUYS, CA—Actress Claire Danes, 17, was fantasized about Monday evening by Van Nuys plumber Doug Blodes, 38. "I have been impressed with Danes' acting skills and nubile body ever since first seeing her on My So-Called Life," Blodes said. "Unfortunately, she was only 14 at the time, and I was unable to bring myself to fantasize about her. Though she is still a year away from legal maturity, after seeing her in Romeo and Juliet recently, I could wait no longer." Blodes added he looks forward to the eventual video release of Romeo and Juliet, so that he can "enjoy the film" in the privacy of his own home.

Local Youth To Insert Coin

EVANSTON, IL—According to sources, Evanston resident Danny Vebber, 16, will insert a coin later this afternoon. Though not confirmed, it is believed the coin will be dropped into a Mortal Kombat II video game machine. "Danny's planned coin insertion does not surprise me," Northwestern University professor of sociology Herman Janks said. "The average 16-year-old boy spends the majority of his day inserting coins, whether it be into video games, soda machines or cigarette dispensers. And when these teens aren't inserting coins, they're usually busy looking for more coins to insert." According to Janks, by the time a boy like Vebber turns 17, he will have inserted more than 31,000 coins into some 4,800 slots.

Burundi Asks Neighbor To Keep It Down

BUJUMBURA, BURUNDI—Fed up with the constant noise, Burundi asked neighboring nation Zaire to "please keep it down" Tuesday. "We cannot get anything done around here with all that racket you're making," Burundi Prime Minister Antoine Nduwayo told Zaire. "Can you please hold your upheaval somewhere else, or at least do it more quietly? There are other countries that live around here, you know." Nduwayo added that Burundi's other neighbor, Rwanda, is "not much better."

Hubby Rick and I Just Got Vanity Plates!

Well, Jean's got some bad news for you: Lady is no more! Longtime readers of my column need not ask who Lady is, but for the benefit of you newcomers, Lady is my 1981 Plymouth Sundance coupe. For nearly a decade, Lady took me to work, carried my groceries and, most recently, accompanied me to RomantiCon '96 in Milwaukee.

Ro-Bots Are Trying To Kill Me

I'm often asked about the role of technology in our society, and whether it is ultimately beneficial or destructive. My reply: Technology is a scourge which must be abolished! I know this first-hand, for, as of this writing, a vast army of mechanical men surrounds my estate, ready to wipe me off the map!

Lucky Charms Phases Out Oat Pieces

MINNEAPOLIS—General Mills, maker of the popular breakfast cereal Lucky Charms, announced Tuesday that the morning favorite will soon become much more lucky with the addition of 16 new colorful marshmallow shapes, displacing the unpopular oat pieces that have hampered the cereal's appeal for decades.
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X-Files Stars Appear At Friendship Skills Seminar

CLEVELAND—X-Files fans from all over the Cleveland area flocked to the downtown Concourse Hotel this weekend to attend "Relating To Others X-ceptionally," a traveling friendship skills seminar and encounter session targeted specifically at the program's socially inept fan base.

A group of <I>X-Files</I> fans relax outside a Cleveland hotel during a break in last weekend's "Relating To Others X-ceptionally" friendship skills seminar. The two-day self-esteem workshop paired <I>X-Files</I> stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson (inset) with award-winning therapist Dr. Ellyn W. Rosenblum.

"The truth is out there," X-Files star David Duchovny told the predominantly male, all-white crowd. "But friendship, real friendship—not the imaginary kind—is within yourselves."

More than 400 people paid $150 each to attend the two-day seminar, which teamed Duchovny and X-Files co-star Gillian Anderson with award-winning therapist Dr. Ellyn W. Rosenblum.

"Having David and Gillian at the seminar has really helped get people excited about improving their friendship skills," said Rosenblum, author of the best-selling Go For It!: 30 Days to a More Outgoing You. "The response has been tremendous."

In addition to the thrill of meeting the stars of their favorite paranormal investigative TV show in person, seminar attendees also received important advice about engaging in social relations with others, even with those who are not X-Files characters.

"Sometimes, you can achieve the same sort of close, deeply involved relationship that you have with the characters we play on X-Files, but with another, living, non-fictional person, who actually lives in the real world," Anderson said.

Continued Anderson: "Agent Scully does not believe in spaceships. But she most definitely does believe in friendships."

Response from seminar attendees was overwhelmingly positive.

"Scully is a very skeptical FBI agent, and I was skeptical about this seminar at first," said Chris Froman, 23, reachable at www.xfiles.cancerman.com. "But just as Mulder can convince Scully that anything's possible, I have also been convinced that friendship is a goal I might someday reach."

Added fan Frank "The Doctor" Hugh: "Scully is sexy, but I like Lois Lane. Isn't Teri Hatcher hot?"

For at least one fan, the seminar led to an important "letting-go" of false dreams. Cleveland Heights resident Maria Renquist, 27, broke down in tears when she and Duchovny shared an "honesty moment," mediated by Dr. Rosenblum, in which the actor told her kindly but firmly that he was not attracted to her, and never would be.

"I learned a lot today," Renquist said, "like how Mulder is a fictional character and stuff."

According to Rosenblum, much credit for the event's success lies in its simulation of the attendees' imaginary fan-lives in a seminar setting.

"X-Files fans divide themselves into two categories," Rosenblum said. "There are the 'Shippers' (short for 'relationshippers'), who are those who want Mulder and Scully to become romantically involved, and 'Non-Shippers,' who feel that a sexual relationship between the two characters, while vicariously fulfilling, would ruin the show's chemistry."

"In my seminar," Rosenblum said, "fans are divided into the same two categories, with 'Shippers' being the ones who desperately crave a relationship in real life, and 'Non-Shippers' being those who have given up hope of ever having a relationship with another person."

"The slogan of X-Files is 'Trust No One,'" Duchovny told the crowd in his closing remarks. "But I want you to learn to trust each other, and let social relationships—just like the ones you've seen on TV—materialize in your own lives. The friends are out there."

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