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the student newspaper of Ballard High School

1,859 Ballard’s population continues to grow

p. 8


Quarterback out for season


Cheating epidemic at Ballard?


Best summer movies, music reviewed

October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA) TA L I S M A N P O L I C I E S M i s s i o n Statement

The Ballard Talisman is an open public forum for student expression, and exists to give a student perspective on issues relating to the Ballard student body and community. Please send signed letters with author’s name, class or position (e.g. parent, student, teacher, etc.) to the editor.




T A L I S M A N S T A F F Editor-in-Chief

Rachel Halmrast

Managing Editor Jackson Croy

News Editor

Alison Aiken

Sports Editor

O b i t u a r y P o l i c y

Sam Heikell

If a student or staff member passes away during the school year, the Talisman will print a picture and extended caption, however, some cases may warrant an article. Each current student or employee will receive an obituary including name, date of birth, date of death and a short biography. Coverage of former students and employees will be taken on a case-by-case basis.

Fe a t u re s E d i t o r Eleanor Dudley

A&E Editor

Jackson Croy

Opinions Editor Claire Moriarty

Copy Editor

Advertising P o l i c y

Katie Read Kearney

The Ballard Talisman reserves the right to refuse any advertisement deemed unacceptable for publication. The Talisman does not run illegal, libelous, or otherwise inappropriate advertisements. If you are interested in placing an ad, e-mail us at


Letters submitted must be signed. Though, in some cases, the author’s name may not have to be printed. There is a 500 word maximum. Anything longer may be submitted as a guest article, subject to being edited for length. Letter will appear on the editorial page.

Website Team


Unsigned editorials represent the majority view of the staff editorial board.


The staff reserves the right to refuse or edit editorials and letters for libelous content, obscenity or material considered inappropriate for publication. The Talisman staff is aware of sound journalistic practice found in the ‘Code of Ethics,’ as part of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Corrections In the future, mistakes we printed in the previous issue will be corrected in this space.

Cover photo by Miles Whitworth Cover design by Rachel Halmrast


Miles Andersen


Alex Putnam Miles Whitworth

Letters to the Editor



Ethan Fritzberg


igh school can be a very difficult time for teenagers, at school or at home. But this year, an even more overpopulated school has added an extra challenge to our everyday lives. In a school built for 1,500 students, we were shocked to be able to fit 1,711 students last year, thinking that it would never get that bad again, thinking it was way out of the norm. But we were wrong about that. With the addition of another 200 students this year, the issue keeps inflating and seems to be getting out of hand. That is, if Seattle Public Schools even recognizes that there’s an issue here. Of course, along with a densely overpopulated school comes some everyday frustrations, such as crowded bathrooms, growing class sizes, exceedingly jam packed hallways and a ridiculous parking situation to name a few. The counseling center on the first day of school was swamped. Over a hundred students had to sit there and wait for hours to get their schedules fixed, instead of going to their classes. And for those students, there was not a good chance for them to get into the classes that they wanted because they were full. A once smelly, cramped athletic storage closet

was turned into a classroom for this school year, and is now the home for all the health classes. Oh, and by the way, there are over 300 seniors that are left without a locker this year, creating an underground market for them. Many seniors who need a locker have actually purchased them from other students. The gridlock in the hallways this year seems to be the most common annoyance from students though. It can be a frustrating experience trying to make your way up a flight of stairs between classes and trying to catch up with teachers or classmates during passing period is almost out of the question unless you want to be tardy. Parents still have yet to figure out an effective system for dropping off their kids before school. Its starting to get pretty impossible for them to do so because there are about 150 cars going through the staff parking lot all within the time span of about ten minutes before school. This just adds to the anxiety of kids arriving at school and the frustrations of parents and locals. And the baffling thing is that nothing has been done, it seems like no one outside of the school has even acknowledged the problem in the first place, a problem that has been brewing for awhile now.

Gwen Lawson Ismael Jones

Staff Artists

Emma Obrieton Brandon Griffith

R e p o r t e r s

Elsa Anderson Ella Andersen Ana Marbett Nolan Baker Clay Cantrell Fletcher Anderson Chris Barrett Julia Drossler Olivia Burdick James Johnson Graciela Gomez Oscar Zahner Owen Levandoski Chris Holland Melina Monlux Keely Carolan Jake Rehfeldt Lily Russell

A d v i s e r

Michael Smith


October 18, 2016 NEWS Ballard High School (Seattle, WA) From athletics to administration

Athletic Director advances within school


he start of the new school year News Editor brought not only a new class, but a new assistant principal as well. When previous Assistant Principal Dr. Barbara Casey announced her decision to accept the principal position at The Center School, her position was filled by our current athletic director, Carrie Burr. Burr was informed of the change on October 7, and told ASB officers after school. “Unfortunately that’s the one bad thing about [the new job] is that I won’t get to continue to be [ASB’s] advisor, so I wanted to tell them in person,” Burr said. ASB President, Julia Jackson, found out about Burr’s promotion on October 3, before Burr was informed. “I was part of the [hiring] committee, so I helped interview people, and then was part of the discussion after the interviews,” Jackson said. The job of athletic director and activities director will continue to be a one person job, however, no one has

Alison Aiken

Carrie Burr directing ASB members at assembly. (Miles Whitworth) been considered for the replacement yet. “I’m still in charge of athletics and activities,” Burr said. “It’s not easy but I can do it--I just have to work more.” Until a replacement is found, Burr will continue to act as both athletic direc-

tor and activities director. Burr has been activities director for nine years, and athletic director for almost seven years; her job as assistant principal is new territory for her. “What’s different is I get to go into classrooms, do hall duty and do meetings with students,” Burr said. “That doesn’t have anything to do with athletics or activities, it’s like the whole other side, which I love.” After completing her administrative internship here last year, Burr “absolutely loved” the assistant principal job. “I was dealing with students all the time. . . I like the interaction and trying to help students that way,” Burr said. “I love being in the classroom and being visible, it’s just completely different.” Although Burr will be busy while she continues her old job, assistant principal is her main focus. “I want to be able to do this job efficiently and to do it well,” Burr said. “This is the job that trumps the others, you just make it work.”

Former athlete talks about drug use

Chris Herren talks about effects of drug use at assembly Ana Marbett

Staff Reporter


ormer NBA point guard, Chris Herren,

came to speak to the student body at an assembly on October 13 about his previous drug addiction that cost him his basketball career. Herren has been alcohol-free and drug-free since June 4, 2008. After Herren recovered from his overdose he started “The Herren Project.” “I truly believe we’ve gone wrong with the way we present addiction,” Herren said. “I think we focus on the worst day and we forget the first day.” Throughout his speech Herren continued to touch on the subject of self-worth and self-esteem. “At the end of the night, as I covered up my mistakes I would always look across the room at my friends

in high school who never drank and who never said. “They got made fun of, but night. . . those kids have something special.” While speaking

assembly, Her-


ast years reading period has been moved from the beginning of second period to the end of sixth period, and renamed DAM Time. “Dedicated Academic Management” is a twenty minute study period at the end of the day intended as time for students to get a start on their homework,.

Introducing gender neutral bathrooms


he time has come for transgender and nonbionary students to be more recognized in school and society, which is why gender neutral bathrooms were introduced this year. Two restrooms next to the councelor’s offices were transformed into gender neutral bathrooms over the summer, with the goal to make every student feel included. Multiple schools around the district have also begun making these sort of changes.


at the end of the

teams after the

Goodbye Goodbye reading reading period, period, hello hello DAM DAM time time

School start times change for Seattle schools

smoked,” Herren

to the basketball

s Neiw fs e r B

Student body listening to Chris Herren speak. (Miles Whitworth)

ren spoke about the importance of supporting each other as a team. “At this level and college level and even professional level people don’t hold themselves accountable, they don’t hold their friends accountable,” Herren said.

Volleyball player Iszy Kleven saw the importance of being a responsible leader. “How you act impacts the people looking up to you, and [Herren’s] talk inspired me to step up and be the leader that I want to be,” Kleven said.

any elementary and high school start times have switched compared to previous years, leading to earlier start times for elementary students and later start times for middle and high schoolers. New start times were implemented because of research that showed that teenagers benefit from later start times. Administrators hoped that a later start time would result in better first period attendance and students being more interactive in morning classes.


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

Spirit week goes off with a bang


Students participate in spirit week before attending homecoming dance


his years spirit week, “A Trip to Rio”, went off without a hitch. The theme was created to commemorate the summer’s olympic games in Rio. Various events carried on throughout the week in anticipation of the homecoming football game and dance on October 7. The week kicked off with pajama day, and other days entailed themes such as tropical clothing and “represent a country”. “We [in ASB] were thinking, what is going on in the world right now?” ASB treasurer/secretary junior Makenzie Blaney said. “Well, the Olympics just happened--Lots of people could participate, and there are easy [themes] we can figure out to do.” The homecoming football game took place at Memorial Stadium at 5 p.m, Friday the 7th, against Garfield, and the dance started not long after, at 8pm in the Commons. “I thought [the game] was so fun. .

Keely Carolan Staff Reporter

. The neon out was really cool because we haven’t really done something like that.” senior Taylor Young said. “Everyone had powder and they were throwing it everywhere and it got all was just super fun.” As tradition, students stayed after school on Thursday to decorate different parts of the school with their class color. “It was really fun this year because we’re seniors and we’ve gotten a lot better at decorating,” senior Max Miyake said. “It was kind of surreal since this was our last time decorating the school, but it was nice to have more people participating.” During the pep assembly on Friday, homecoming court was announced and various activities took place to lift the school’s spirits. “It’s way more fun [at assemblies] being a senior because you can do whatever you want and still win,” senior Nikki Simpson said. “The best part is when the entire grade starts chanting and it gets really intense.”

Senior class screaming at the Spirit Can during the school assembly. (Ethan Fritzberg) Many people participated in the spirit days this week. Some students jumped right into the festivities, while others preferred to watch from a distance. “I think spirit weeks are really fun and it’s nice to see people [coming together],” sophomore Rhys Williams said.

The next spirit week is scheduled for the winter, December 12 through the 16. “I love walking down the halls and seeing everyone all dressed up,” Blaney said. “It just makes you feel a part of something.”

ACE introduced to Seattle schools

Study of troubled students begins in high schools around Seattle


very high school student has seen the kids who show up to class one day out of the week at most, heard of the trouble-makers that are constantly suspended. These students are chastised for being somehow ignorant of their academics, and disruptive toward their classmates. ACE stands for “Adverse Childhood Experiences.” Beginning this school year, BHS has organized resources to help and understand students experiencing trauma. Only recently, school officials in Washington State have started asking themselves: “What if the solution is not so black-and-white?” Students are, after all, different people at home and at school. Parental divorce, domestic violence, lack of food or clothes, death of a parent, mental health disor-

Julia Drossler Staff Reporter

ders, physical disabilities, substance abuse, involvement of child protective services and homelessness are known throughout the ACE program as “complex traumas,” which are proven to have adverse affects on student learning, concentration, attendance and behavior. “ACEs work has seemed to gain the most exposure and traction now in

the Seattle area and district,” District Staffer, David Lewis, said. “The model I created is called “Trauma -Informed MTSS, I originally created it at an organization called Rainier Scholars and SPS has brought me in to build the Department of Behavioral Health and scale the model district wide.” The Trauma-Informed MTSS (Trauma Informed Multi-Tier System

of Support) is a framework developed to help teachers communicate with students. “To me, the idea is not to just judge the behavior because it is wrong, but to think about what happened to cause it,” Principal, Kevin Wynkoop, said. “Instead of focusing on a student’s misbehavior, it’s really trying to look at who the student is. . .this is really designed to look at a more complex approach to how we interact with students.” In the end, ACEs are simply markers to show challenges that can be overcome. Advocates like Lewis argue that students need to know their hardships do not define them, and that they have the tools to climb out of any hole in which they might find themselves.



October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

Senior quarterback out for season Ballard falls to Garfield 11-6 on homecoming night

Sideline Chatter Girls soccer beats Rainier Beach


occer defeated Rainier Beach 6-0 on October 13th. Goals were scored by Tasha Tennyson (12), Kelsey Austin (12), Sarah Hudson (11), Sydney Janeway (12), Erika Weber (12) and Mercedes George (11). After one controversial call in the game, the beach fans came onto the field, and the referee was forced to issue them a warning. In the last minutes of the game, the beach defense was inactive, and Ballard finished with an easy win.

Cross country looking good


Senior quarterback Corbin Gabrel ruled out for the season after suffering a broken collarbone in the second quarter of the homecoming game.


n a team with minimal veteran exa couple quarterbacks who were good enough to play at perience, Ballard has to value its sethe next level. “This season was basically proving to myself nior leadership. And in last Friday’s that I could be the guy,” Gabrel said. He’s been quarterHomecoming game defeat, they lost their biggest leader. backing since the third grade through the Ballard Junior Their quarterback, Corbin Gabrel, suffered a broken colFootball program and has wanted to ultimately be the larbone early in the second quarter and is now out for the quarterback for the high school ever since. “I like being the remainder of the season. leader of the team and having people depend on me, it’s a Gabrel was scrambling for a first down, when a defender good challenge.” tackled him out of bounds, landing awkwardly on top of This year, Gabrel has embraced the leadership role him. “At first I thought that it was just a stinger and I could throughout the program and has been helping out with the younger quarterbacks. “It was the shake it off,” Gabrel said. “But when I coaching staff’s first year so I wanted had to lift my arm up, I could feel my to be a good example for the rest of the bone cracking and a big bump on my program and leave a positive imprint,” right shoulder.” Gabrel said. He still plans on going to After getting checked out on the a lot of practices and finish out his role sideline, he made his way to the hospias the leader of the team by mentoring tal during halftime. But the team still and working with the players. had an important homecoming game “Losing Corbin was obviously a to win, facing last year’s’ head coach, huge hit,” head coach Ross Humphries Joey Thomas, who moved to Garfield. -Corbin Gabrel, quarterback said. “It’s tough because he lead the Following a touchdown and a team through spring and summer. But successful two point conversion now we have to rely on our seniors from Garfield, Ballard’s backup quarterback Ian Crocker ran one in for a touchdown, that we have to step up and fill his shoes.” Gabrel has been drawing some college interest to play at but they failed to convert the two point conversion. the next level, but as of now, he isn’t planning on pursuGarfield then made a field goal and Ballard’s offense ing football after high school. “When I realized that I was was too out of sink to recover, as they failed to get into the endzone at the end of the game. going to be done for the rest of the season, it was hard,” For Gabrel, this season has meant a lot. For the last two Gabrel said. “Especially because it’s probably my last game seasons, he has had to wait his turn, being the backup for ever.”

Sam Heikell

Sports Editor

“I wanted to be a good example for the rest of the program and leave a positive imprint.”

n Oct. 12, cross country participated in a meet hosted by Nathan Hale. Out of eight teams the boys came in 3rd, with Jonny Maier finishing 4th individually. The girls finished first out of nine teams. Anastasia Konugres came in first individually, with her season record of 19:49. The cross country team is having a solid season and is preparing for metros on Thurs., 20, with districts the week following.

Volleyball Volleyball beats beats Cleveland Cleveland


he Volleyball team won against Cleveland on Thursday’s away conference match by a score of 3-0. So far this season has a near matched win loss count of 7 losses and 6 wins. The next match will be an another away game against Garfield on Tues., 18 at 7pm.

Golf Metros Metros taktakGolf ing place place today today ing


ix boys and six girls are competing in their respective 3A Metro golf tournaments today at Jackson Park Golf Course today. Players that make the cut will advance to the district tournament, held at Jefferson Park Golf Course.


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)


New school start time effects on sports Athletes get more sleep


he new late start time was certainly a controversial issue when the concept was first introduced last year. Though studies were in favor of it, many students were wary about the impact it could have on the timing of their day. One of the most prevalent groups of students who harbored these concerns were student athletes. For these athletes, schedules are very tight, and time management is key. With the later start time, many athletes feared that their schedule would be thrown off, practices would be poorly timed and they would simply end up going to bed later, possibly getting even less sleep than before. However, it does not seem as though any of these concerns actually materialized. “Overall I enjoy waking up a lot later,” senior volleyball player Megan McAllister said. “On practice days especially, the start time hasn’t really been an issue, because I still get home between 5 and 6.” The majority of athletes around the school seem to agree that these new practice times have not been a problem. Neither has the scheduling, which was a major concern for players and coaches alike. “We are actually only here like an half hour later this year,” senior soccer captain Tasha Tennyson said. Yet on this issue in particular, the jury is still out, as the changing season will bring with it new factors that may prove to be problematic. “It hasn’t really started getting dark yet, but pretty soon it’ll get dark at what? 4:30? So that will definitely be difficult, because the field doesn’t have lights,” Tennyson said. Additionally, winter sports will have a hoard of scheduling problems of their own. “There are already three basketball teams for both girls and boys, as well as gymnastics and sometimes wrestling, and there is very limited time and space for everyone,” sophomore basketball player Kate Rutledge said. “The late start pushes everything back, so there will

Melina Monlux Staff Reporter

either be less time to fit everyone in, or much later practices.” Foreseen or not, what has become an issue for many athletes is missing class for games or meets. As a result of the start times shifting and the sporting events not, many students are having to miss 1-2 periods every time they have a game. “I have pre-calc [precalculus] 6th period, and I’ve missed it like 7 times since school started because of golf, so I’ve fallen pretty behind, because it’s really hard to keep up with the class when I keep missing it,” junior golfer Jennifer Osako said. This leaves some athletes scrambling to keep up, and some with a lack of opportunity to do so. “School gets out at 3:15, and practice starts at 3:30. So there’s not really time to talk to your teachers or make up a test,” Tennyson said. In this regard, student athletes are put in a slightly compromising position. “It can get really overwhelming at times,” junior runner Sophia Konugres said. However, not all sports face this issue. “With indoor sports it’s staggered, so since I’m on varsity I play much later, and haven’t had to be taken out of school early,” McAllister said. Despite these challenges, many athletes Brandon Griffith have ended up favor-

ing the later start time. “I like coming to school later,” Konugres said. Although many argued last year they would simply go to bed an hour later, or perhaps end up getting less sleep, it seems that this has not proven to be the case. “Honestly, I am getting an extra hour of sleep, because I’m going to bed at the same time regardless of the start time,” McAllister said, “so I am getting more rest and that’s good.” So although the change brought with it a few inconveniences, it has been a change for the better in many ways, even to those students with particularly tight schedules, and an extra need for sleep.

Second annual Buff Puff game a dissapointment for Seniors Claire Moriarty On Oct. 5, Ballard

held its second annual Buff Puff tournament, pitting a team of Junior boys against a team of Senior boys in a best of three volleyball match. These teams were coached by Ballard volleyball players, including varsity captains Iszy Kleven and Ruby Fera (Senior and Junior coaches respectively). Both teams came prepared to play a competitive game, and intent on winning, especially the Seniors, who lost last year’s game. The Juniors took first serve, Opinions Editor

The junior team celebrates after a hard fought win. (Ethan Fritzburg)

and kept a strong lead for the majority of the first set. At match point, the Seniors rallied and took a few points off of their red-clad opponents. They managed an impressive comeback, but the first set ended at 25 - 21, Juniors’ favor. The teams headed into the second set with even more energy and determination, and the Juniors quickly pulled ahead. When the Juniors led 10 - 3, the Seniors called a time-out to regroup. The last several plays were especially intense, but the set finished with a 25 - 13 victory for the Juniors, winning them the match.






his school year began with later start times, a completely different schedule, and a freshman class of 511-- the largest it’s ever been. Overcrowding at BHS isn’t a new issue, but it’s only continuing to get worse. Students are struggling to navigate the suffocating hallways, and teachers face even larger class sizes than they did last year. “It feels like hallways are starting to get unbearably crowded, to the point where I can barely move at all,” senior Will Davidson said. “The staircases this year also seem especially horrible . . . if you think of the school as an artery, then there’s just a huge clot where nothing’s happening, and that way

everybody’s dying.” The congested hallways and packed bleachers are inconvenient for most, but could be downright intimidating for some, especially the new freshman class. “I don’t even see some of the people who go here, ever,” freshman Claire Burreson said. “I’m pretty comfortable, but I can imagine other freshmen that don’t have an older sibling and don’t know what they’re expecting, coming from places like Blaine where they had been since elementary school, and it’s probably really really different.” Even some of the minor functions of the school are being jeopardized by the staggering number of

Just how many is 1,859?

October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

Just when we thought we had reached the limit, BHS continues to grow students. “I didn’t go to the dance, because the line [for tickets] was too long,” Burreson said. “We were standing in the line on the last Friday, and we had been waiting for at least twenty minutes and we weren’t even through the door.” Meeting with a counselor is also extremely difficult, and was impossible for the first week or so of school. Students who headed up to the counseling office to fix a problem with their schedule or change a class were met with a closed door, even though it’s important that these changes happen as soon as possible. The numbers have gotten so high that students’ ability to learn and teachers’ ability to teach are being compromised.

“No one’s going to learn in that environment . . . it’s impossible to tend to every student when there’s 45 of them [sic] and 50 minutes to teach.” -Will Davidson, 12

1,859 hours = 2.5 months

1,859 feet = 3 Space Needles

1,859 Cheerios = 7.3 bowls

“I lot of my classes tend to be juniors and seniors,” Davidson said, “so my government class isn’t really that crowded, but things like Tech Theatre, Botany, and Japanese have all been getting a little too stuffed.” “I’m a huge advocate for small classes,” he said. “No one’s gonna learn in that environment, unless it’s a college class. It’s impossible to tend to each and every student when there’s 45 of them [sic] and 50 minutes to teach.” Although being able to adapt is important, there is only so much that teachers can do to compensate for larger classes. “Teachers are already overworked with thirty students, and now some classes have 35 or 36,” senior Riley Guiles said. “In my botany class, there’s 35 kids and we can’t all use the computers, so normally two or three people will have to share with somebody, and I think that takes away the learning experience.”


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

In addition to managing the class itself, even if they receive a small amount of funding from their department, many teachers end up providing students with supplies from their own pocket. With class sizes continuing to climb into the upper thirties, the personal cost of running a classroom is bound to increase tremendously. Lab-based sciences, especially, require specific and often expensive materials, which can’t be covered by the tiny amount teachers receive each year.


A history of overcrowding Ballard High School opens with 650 students


Next steps

With the help of portables, Ballard holds almost 2,000 students

Our current enrollment boundaries encompass many neighborhoods surrounding the school, but also reach across the Ballard Bridge to Magnolia and Queen Anne, which have no formal high school of their own. Back in 2013, when the district realized that they’d be receiving about 10,000 new students within the next decade, the School Board voted to reduce overcrowding by redrawing elementary and middle school boundaries and adding a brand new high school into the district. Lincoln High School, however, is far from brand new. The school was built in Wallingford in 1906, making it Ballard’s junior by only three years. It was closed in 1981 due to declining enrollment, and has since housed other schools while their buildings underwent construction and renovation. The district plans on reopening the doors to 1,600 students in 2019. This won’t clear out our hallways or open seats on the bleachers this year, but it remains the only long term solution in sight.

1942 Enrollment reaches 2,200, which sparks a major remodel of the building

1963 Ground is broken for the construction of a Ballard building

1916 Enrollment passes 1,000, therefore exceeding capactiy

1938 9th graders are moved to nearby junior high schools to reduce overcrowding

1957 Student count hits 2,532, teachers stand strong at 101


Additional reporting by Melina Monlux

Data collected from

How do the numbers affect us?

Crowded hallways Seniors without lockers

Over-sized classrooms

Not enough computers for every student

Not enough textbooks

More time spent grading for teacher

Shortage of desks for the PSAT



October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

Losing Student Integrity is the Price of an “A” Has cheating become the new norm?


How do students learn the integrity and work ethic that parents and teachers alike hope they have? What is the difference between a student who cheats and one who doesn’t? It seems there becomes no difference as the years go on, desperation takes hold and students lose sight of the value of their own work, feeling it’s not worth their time, when the grade is what matters most. Because it’s the grade that gives students the GPA that gives students the ticket to college admissions and that is the ticket to their future… isn’t it? Storey is concerned about what this epidemic of cheating means beyond academics, for personal character “It’s a matter of integrity and a matter of honesty. If I’m sending citizens out in the world I would like my fellow citizens to be honest beings and if they don’t know something to say I don’t know and not to lie about things, it’s a human character trait we are trying to instill.” Students, teachers and parents don’t seem to be on the same page in regards to the value of integrity, according to the Talisman survey, and a survey of parents, done by Storey on curriculum night, parents had unexpected answers when asked: “ What do you wish for your kid?”. “Not a single one wrote a 4.0, not a single one wrote a thing about grades at all. They want them to be happy, to grow, to learn and to have fun.”

he first time I remember cheatFeatures Editor ing was on a second grade spelling test. I ended up with a 100% on that test.” “I cheated on a math test because I wasn’t actually taught the material.” “I cheat almost every Japanese test.” The answers are overwhelmingly honest and reflect a dramatic trend. In a recent survey conducted by the Talisman, the number of students who admit to cheating at least once, vastly outweigh those who never have, and as students get older the number of students who say they have never cheated drops down to zero. The question now is why? And how can this be fixed? Language arts teacher ,Kristin Storey, recently wrote a paper for the National Endowment for the Humanities Seminar on Philosophers of Education, trying to find answers.

Eleanor Dudley

Why Students Cheat

She discovered that students cheat for a number of reasons, and the Talisman survey corroborates every one of them, as student after student wrote that they cheat because of the pressure to get good grades, from being overwhelmed and overworked, and because cheating has become the new norm in high schools. Students see cheating as a routine part of the day, it’s just doing what students have to do. Storey says students have a mentality of well, Kristin Storey it’s so prevalent it obviously can’t be a problem,” she said.“It loses its weightiness the more common it becomes.” And it definitely is common. No matter what subject, the weightiness of the assignment, or the percentage of the grade, students don’t hesitate to turn to cheating and plagiarism when times get tough.

Implications for Students

But the real worry is what cheating is doing to a student’s future. Colleges don’t take kindly to cheating and plagiarism, and if students spend high school leaning on the crutch of cheating, they can fall in a downward spiral. Many colleges, including Harvard and the University of Washington, have a wide range of disciplinary action in response to suspected academic misconduct, ranging from a written reprimand to required withdrawal from the College. “If they never try to write a beautiful, eloquent sentence on their own and just take it from other people, they just don’t develop the skills,” Storey said.

How Teachers Handle Cheating

Each teacher handles the problem differently, which Storey argues is part of the problem. She said teachers often have different policies which doesn’t benefit students. “Sometimes when teach

Students’ Integirty

Mental Health

Emma Obrietan

ers do find it, it’s messy to deal with,” she said. Teachers play a large role, but they are yet another cog in the wheel, next to parents, students, administration and a society that values grades as the ultimate success for high school students. But the pressure often falls on teachers to enact classroom policies that discourage cheating. General chemistry teacher Timothy Stedman has had to tighten policies in response to cheating in a challenging class like chemistry, cheating on a worksheets is common, and evidence appears on tests. His responses include policies such as clearing graphing calculator memories and banning headphones or phone use as a calculator. “You can get a good grade with cheating but you haven’t earned it-it won’t feel good. There is a greater sense of wellbeing that comes from an accomplishment won by your own hard work,” he said.

“You can get a good grade with cheating but you haven’t earned it--it won’t feel good. There is a greater sense of well-being that comes from an accomplishment won by your own hard work.” -Timonthy Stedman, General Chemistry Teacher

In a culture that values success above all , students feel pressured to the point that they live on the breaking point. And for some students sooner or later they will break. Studies done by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2011, show suicide as the third leading cause of death in American youth, and the National Alliance of Mental Illness reports that 20% of American youth ages 13-8 live with a mental health condition. “These are young lives we’re dealing with here. The increased anxiety rates, and the increased mental health ailments should tell us something,” Storey said.


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)


India Carlson Takes a Trip to India Teacher volunteers in India over the summer

Senior Avery Davis challenging expectations for teen artists ‘Forget Basement’ releases first full-length LP. “The Human Race is an Invention of the West,”


e points towards his closet. Jackets take up half Staff Reporter the closet and the other half is devoted to what looks like an ice chest on its side, packed with foam and wires. Avery concedes, saying “yeah, that’s pretty much it, it’s all done right here.” Every square inh of his room is covered with equipment. A Telecaster on one side of his bed. A Yamaha bass in front of the door. Vinyl records on all the countertops. A few notebooks of lyrics strewn around randomly. The only open spots are taken by his cats Napoleon, Lucy and Mason. Whenever a high school musician puts out music, their audience always secretly expects a bit of mediocrity. Whether it be in the lyricism, the production value, or (most commonly) originality. A listener always knows when someone recorded in their bedroom surrounded by shag carpeting and tangled audio cables versus when someone records in a professional studio. Senior Avery Davis’ new album is a 22-minute contradiction to that idea. Davis goes under the moniker Forget Basement, and this past August he released his first full-length LP, “The Human Race is an Invention of the West,” his third installment in the Forget Basement discography, after he put out two EPs, “Sun House” in January, and “What Foul Dust Wakes in Our Dreams” in May. The production quality is high enough quality to make a listener wonder if Davis shelled out hundreds or thousands of dollars for a few days rent in a professional studio, but he says otherwise. “I just go into my closet--I take out all the jackets. I close the door and I record.” The chilling sound of Jones’s voice, coupled with echoing drums and dynamic synths create a sort of duality within the song. The words of Jim Jones are haunting, but the music itself shows some sort of hopefulness. “I promise I’m not a psychopath.”

Nolan Baker

Davis’s recording set-up, which takes up half his closet. The box here is filled with foam and wires. Nolan Baker A psychopath, he is not. Meticulous and driven, he is. “[The Human Race] took me about a couple weeks,” he states nonchalantly. That breakneck pace is routine for Davis, only a month after the August release of his LP, he already has more content on the way. “I’m trying [to keep the pace up], I have a new tape that’s almost done. It’s gonna be one long extensive track that’s like 15 minutes long. It’s actually a B-Side to this tape I’m putting out at some point,” he exclaims in a tone that seems like he’s been doing this for years, and that he’ll be doing this for years to come.

“A psychopath, he is not. Meticulous and driven, he is.”


ndia Carlson (Physical Science, Botany, and Environmental Horticulture teacher) took a trip to India over the summer, and while she was there she saw and felt the changes in a country that she hadn’t been to in 25 years. While embracting the changes, she found ways to help the teachers at the school in India better the education plan in ways that are used at Ballard. After college she decided to travel for a year. She bought a one-way ticket to Southeast Asia. She spent half of her trip going from Southern India, all the way up the West Coast, then inland and left from Delhi. ww During her trip she was able to experience what it was like being the minority, “Being in a culture completely India Carlson different from your own, being white in a country that is not white, and being a woman traveling there especially in that time period. when India was still very conservative,” said Carlson. One thing she took away from the trip was the celebration of life and color that was expressed through clothes. “I mean, I was into that before, but I will never dress in grey, in boring, in black ever again,” she vowed. After 10 years of teaching and other events in her life Mrs. Carlson decided to go back to India. This time to “work, contribute, or volunteer” in a country that helped shape who she is today.

Graciela Gomez Safff Reporter

“Growth is a constant in one’s life, you mustn’t be surprised when you end up in the same place but different situation.” The application process was long and stacked with paperwork. She needed letters of recommendation, her credentials, a proposal, and when they accepted her she had two weeks to get everything ready to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. She worked hard with her co-workers to develop lesson plans that would positively impact the way students were learning science and math. By the end of her trip she helped teachers find creative ways to teach instead of the “lesson only style where the teachers are the only speakers.” Growth is a constant in one’s life, you mustn’t be surprised when you end up in the same place but different situation. Just grow with the flow. As time moves forward so does your knowledge and acceptance towards new ideas and beliefs.



October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

SummerRecap This issue, The Talisman will review albums and movies released from the time school ended to the release of our first issue.

Staff Picks Bon Iver 22, A Million 

Noname Telefone ½

Danny Brown Atrocity Exhibition  ½

Read these reviews and more on the new Talisman Website - coming soon!


A return well worth the wait

Frank Ocean sets himself apart with acid-washed introspective soul Jackson Croy

n August 20 Frank Ocean’s sophomore album “Blonde” took the world by anything but surprise. Following the tremendous success from his debut “channel ORANGE,” Ocean disappeared off social media, and by association, the face of the Earth. Fans and industry heads alike were desperate for more from Frank, so much so that his pop relevance surpassed what the public saw as his artistic license. After a few very vague hints on Tumblr, we wanted the album sooner rather than better. “Blonde,” unlike most summer blockbuster albums, is one that grows on the listener through multiple plays. Through 17 tracks, Frank weaves dozens of layers and themes, including addiction, individuality, depression and the tolls of fame. On “Solo (Reprise),” the line “So low that I don’t get high no more // when I geronimo, I just go ‘Eh,’” is flawlessly delivered by seasoned rap veteran, Andre 3000. The hourlong project completely deletes the modern paradigm that the music relies on the producer to be “good”. While “Blonde” does have both a Pharrell and a Mike Dean instrumental, Frank defeats this stereotype through his songwriting prowess and his own production on multiple tracks. On “Solo,” Frank plays a moody organ riff

Senior Avery Davis releases third album Gothic synth-pop singer brings dark, moody third act Nolan Baker

Staff Reporter


enior Avery Davis releases the third installment from his solo act Forget Basement, “The Human Race Is An Invention Of The West.” At just over 20 minutes through eight songs, Davis gets introspective faster than you would expect. The lyrics, while brief, are deep and thoughtful. Their sparity emphasizes the textures on the album. The record plays like he’s talking himself through

a therapy session where he’s both the patient and psychologist. Haunting at times, melancholy at others, always powerful and attention grabbing. Davis’ voice breaks through the instrumental wall of sound. Again, the singing is sparse in this album. Many songs are taken up with just music, which is welcome, as music is the highlight here. The standout tracks on the record are “My Life As A God Damned Metaphor” and

“Usual Teenage Phase.” The best aspect of this album, the production is dense, ethereal and goth to the core. Heavy guitar feedback, dreamy reverb on the vocals and synths keep the mood constantly light, even when Davis delves into depressing parts of his mind. Davis gives an intimate take on depression, self-esteem, and relationships. While not the most original themes, he keeps it very personal to his own experience.

Blonde 

A&E Editor


Frank Ocean

reminiscent of a wedding march. “In hell, in hell there is heaven,” he sings, indicating his find-yourpath philosophy. His voice is matched with an airy response of the word “solo” over and over as the song quietly fades. Compared to “Channel Orange,” “Blonde” is mellow. More slow dances are heard here, less funk jams. While “Channel Orange” era frank was dancing his problems away, “Blonde” era frank confronts them head on, often in psychedelic-fueled episodes. “High flights, inhale the vapor, exhale once and think twice // Eat some shrooms, maybe have a good cry about you,” Frank says on “Seigfried,” reminding the audience that he is as vulnerable as anyone to heartbreak. Frank Ocean has grown up. He has come of age in a stunning manner. This album will challenge fans of “Channel Orange,” but the marvelous beauty of Frank’s lyrics combined with airy, nuanced instrumentals should win back the hearts of even the most pop-oriented fans.

Forget Basement

The Human Race Is An Invention Of The West  ½


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

MOVIES & TV “Stranger Things” captures eyes and hearts

Netflix portrays retro in a captivating modern light Stranger Things (2016)  Rachel Halmrast Editor-in-Chief


or those who didn’t live through the ‘80s, Netflix Original “Stranger Things” is a perfect time capsule. It seamlessly combines the coming-ofage narrative of “The Goonies,” the teenage drama of “Sixteen

is perhaps the most visually impressive. Her shaved head is obviously an eye-catcher, and adds to her almost alien look, but still manages to suit her incredibly well. Although Brown has a total of about three spoken lines, her intense facial expressions make up for her limited dialogue. The twelve-year-old has a way of connecting to her audience that few can achieve in a Eleven prepares to use her telekinetic powers. lifetime. Brown was 11 years old during filming. Still taken Although the from iMDB vast majority of the faces on Candles,” and the tacky-but-nevthe show were new to most, the ertheless unnerving action of only recognizable actor gave the “Poltergeist.” with fantastic writonly unenjoyable performance. ing and character design. Winona Ryder began her career The show follows several difin the late ‘80s, and found her ferent plot lines, but they are all niche as the quirky teenage dracentered around the disappearma queen. However, in “Stranger ance of Will Byers, a 12 year old Things” she assumes the role of a played by Noah Schnapp. After hysterical mother of two, which Will vanishes on his way home is a shocking challenge to our one night, his three best friends, fond memories of her. Her frantic Mike, Dustin, and Lucas (Finn overacting may have been acceptWolfhard, Gaten Matarazzo, able in 1988, but in this modern and Caleb McLaughlin), along masterpiece, she sticks out like a with his mother, brother, and the sore thumb. town’s hardened sheriff set out to However, Ryder’s performance find him. in no way diminishes the show as While out on a midnight a whole. It’s a beautifully craftsearch, the band of preteens ed work with brilliant writing, stumble upon a mysterious girl design, and casting. The audience called Eleven (her only identififalls in love with the characters cation is an “11” tattooed on her one by one, even finding time to wrist) played by Millie Bobby appreciate Ryder’s over the top Brown. Along with her striking breathlessness on occasion. buzzcut, Eleven possesses teleSomehow achieving the imposkinetic abilities, and a haunting sible, “Stranger Things” pays past that is sewn together in flawless homage to the past, flashbacks throughout the eight while leaving its audience feeling episodes. refreshed and excited for more. Every character in the show Come season two next summer, has a unique and distinctly we’ll all be back under the covers eighties aesthetic, but Eleven’s and on the edge of our seats.


“Kubo and the Two Strings” pushes boundaries for animation Laika Studios presents their most ambitious project to date Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) Chris Barrett

Staff Reporter


 ubo and the

Two Strings,” directed by Travis Knight, is the fourth animated film from Portland-based Laika Entertainment. The plot follows Kubo: a young boy on a quest to retrieve three ancient artifacts and fend off his resentful relatives. Visually, “Kubo” is the single most impressive film of the decade. It’s a brilliant marriage of only the best in stop-motion and CGI animation technology and ingenuity. This film is a shining example of how extraordinary live-action and digitally-produced animation can be when combined effectively, both mediums complementing areas where the other excels and compensating for where it does not. Almost every as-

pect of this film’s presentation is nearly flawless, from its remarkable set design to its beautifully fluid animation. Disappointingly, however, “Kubo’s” storyline does not live up to the standards set by its visual achievements. What starts as a strong and engrossing plot devolves into a mediocre and predictable one by the second act. Any chemistry between the three main characters dissolves over time, resulting in some very awkwardly delivered lines. “Kubo’s” hubris is its ambition. It tries so hard to be so many things - and succeeds in many areas - but the sheer scope of the project leads it to become noticeably less focused as it progresses. It’s in sharp contrast to films like “Coraline”, the studio’s most successful picture. “Coraline” works because it

utilizes a small range of characters and settings, giving the creators time to develop these aspects into a meaningful story, keeping the plot tight and seamless throughout. “Kubo” lacks this patience, and tries to cover so many bases it ends up landing on none of them. Is “Kubo and the Two Strings” a masterpiece? Not by any stretch of the word. But would I recommend it? Absolutely. Regardless of its shortcomings, “Kubo” is still a charmingly unique achievement in creative and technical excellence - and is actually barely breaking even at the box office. In fact, it’s the least profitable Laika movie to date. It’s unfortunate to see groundbreaking movies like this go unrewarded, so if you have any interest - even as glorified eye candy - go see it. You won’t regret it.

Tim Burton creates satisfying rendition of young adult novel Visually striking, but grimness lost in the process Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children (2016)  Claire Moriarty Opinions Editor

Readers of the popular young adult novel, “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” queued up outside movie theaters among fans of Director, Tim Burton, on September 30, when Burton’s highly anticipated adaption was released. When sixteen-year-old Jacob Portman’s grandfather dies, Jacob (Asa Butterfield) is left grieving, confused, and with questions unanswered. Heart set on closure, he journeys to the tiny island of Cairnholm, where his grandfather spent several years under the care of the mysterious Miss Peregrine (Eva Green) and in the company of a cadre of children with special abilities. He becomes caught up in their adventures, and is soon to discover that he isn’t as ordinary as he always thought.

As a film, “Peregrine” was a thrill ride of freakish delight, unmistakably the direct product of the combined minds of Burton and Author, Ransom Riggs, whose published works also include “Hollow City and Library of Souls,” the concluding novels in his bestselling “Peculiar Children” trilogy. Gorgeous cinematography and a skilled cast make this movie a delectable feast for the eyes. However, entertaining though it may have been, the film adaption of “Peregrine” deviates sharply from the book’s narrative at times, giving off less of a sense of grimness, and excising some of the character study that proved so crucial to the story in writing. While this may have come as an unwelcome surprise to die-hard fans of the series, the exciting action and stunning visuals should compensate for any disappointment. Thrilling, eccentric, and sometimes a little scary, “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” is a must-see if you’re looking for a breath of fresh air.


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)

Scorched Earth: the second presidential debate A rancorous display captures the desperation of a bleak and hateful election cycle Oscar Zahner Staff Reporter


he debate seemed to happen in reverse. Donald Trump’s campaign was in tatters as he approached the podium on Sunday night. The recently leaked videotape of him bragging about sexually assaulting women in 2005 had drawn condemnation from politicians on both sides of the isle. GOP politicians were abandoning him in unprecedented numbers, including John Kasich, Carly Fiorina, and, most notably, John McCain. Across America, there were uncertain whispers that Trump might be finished. Clinton approached the stage with determination. Her opponent was at the most vulnerable he had ever been. With less than a month until the election, she had one definitive chance to bring down the knife. The tension was palpable. Both candidates were nearing the deciding moments of the election, and passions had never been higher. The air of the debate stage was thick with discontent and disdain. The candidates did not shake hands. The first question concerned the examples the two candidates were setting for children. Even as Clinton and Trump gave their bland, inoffensive non-answers, a looming presence seemed to hang over the two candidates. And then Anderson Cooper brought up the tape. The storm that followed was the bitterest, most personal half hour of this historically bitter and personal election. Trump doubled down on his “locker-room talk” excuse, reminding the audience that it was “just words”. Hillary Clinton pounced, citing Donald Trump’s repeated history of sexism and general toxicity. “This is who Donald Trump is,” she told the crowd. Donald Trump was in a corner. So, in an incredibly ill-advised and risky political maneuver, he began viciously attacking Bill Clinton’s record with women. He lashed out at Hillary over the unsubstantiated allegation that she had “silenced” her husband’s rape accusers. He even attacked her for having been been appointed to represent the rapist of a twelve-year-old in court, who ended up pleading guilty. His assault on Hillary Clinton crescendoed to dystopian levels when he threatened to appoint a private prosecutor to investigate her and dedicate his resources as president to put her in jail. Trump’s campaign has always faced accusations of demagoguery, but never has he invited the comparison to a dictator as obviously as he did when he threatened to jail his political opponent. Trump’s desperation was most clearly showcased in

his childish feud with the moderators. “Why haven’t you asked her about her emails?” he moaned, violently grasping for some measure of the false equivalence that he had successfully used to downplay his scandals in the past. Again, we saw the petulant Trump from the aftermath of the first debate, but this time his cries of unfairness were even more blatantly petty. He constantly complained about not being allowed to go over time, while angrily shouting about how the moderators were letting Clinton get away with it. Every time he was scolded for breaking the debate rules, he cried conspiracy. “It’s three against one, great,” he said, in a particularly heated exchange with Anderson Cooper. But as it became apparent that Trump’s usual strategy wasn’t going to dig him out of the hole the tape had placed him in, he did something I never thought I would see him do. He tried to shift the debate away from personality and towards policy. Donald Trump worked his way around answering a question about the video, and frantically tried to save face by suggesting that ISIS posed a far greater threat to America than some “decade-old tape”. It was a laughably obvious segue from a subject Trump was uncomfortable with, but Donald Trump’s message was clear: he wanted the debate to focus less on the candidate’s identity, a fight he was clearly losing, and more on their plans and visions for America. This was a risky gambit for Trump, as Hillary has consistently had the upper hand over him in terms of policy. One of Donald Trump’s greatest shortcomings in the first debate was his inability to defend his policy positions in a focused and coherent manner, but it was clear that moving the debate into marginally less uncomfortable territory could help him pick up the pieces of his campaign. But no matter how hard he tried, no matter how forcefully he dodged the moderator’s questions, Trump couldn’t seem to escape the relentless barrage of character attacks and image politics that had been his trademark style less than a week before. And then something remarkable happened. Hillary Clinton changed the debate. When asked to respond to Trump’s attempts to revive the 1998 Lewinsky scandal, Hillary refused to let the soap opera feud carry on. “When they go low, you go high,” she said, quoting a private conversation with Michelle Obama. It seemed a paradoxical move--Clinton was backing off an issue that was clearly embarrassing Trump. After this, the tone of the debate shifted. The two candidates fell back into the same dance as the first debate. Clinton was back to defending her term as secretary of state, Trump was back to lambasting the entire political establishment. In fact, Donald Trump’s relentless effort to associate Hillary Clinton with all the shortcomings of the American political system was seldom as apparent as it was when Trump directly suggested that Hillary Clinton was responsible for all of our government’s

failures in the thirty years she’s been involved with American politics. “If you were a strong senator, you wouldn’t have let those things happen,” he said in one of his many interruptions. It may seem illogical for Trump to rely on image politics after the disaster that has followed him since Friday. But even if the release of the Trump tape was the last straw for many conservatives, it hasn’t mitigated the outsider image that Trump has developed a habit of falling back on. And yet, Trump’s poor performance in the first presidential debate suggests that this image alone probably won’t win him the election. In effect, Trump is drowning. He has less than a month before the election, which is not enough time for him to strike a more humble tone or change his image to court undecided voters. And the release of the tapes has strongly weakened his personal credibility, meaning his outsider persona is all he has left. The debate has shown us that Trump is forced to double down on a losing strategy, alienating moderates, undecideds, and independents. But from the outset, Trump’s impending catch-22 wasn’t so obvious. Many commentators noted that Trump seemed to have regained his composure and weaseled his way out of the controversy of the tape. What we saw in the last hour of the debate was the same old Trump, not the Trump that was staring at his impending doom. Unfortunately for Mr. Trump, that may not be enough. His style of argument left the nation with the same bitter taste in its mouth it had during the first debate. Ultimately, in a race that is looking more and more foreboding for him, he failed to gain any ground.

Fletcher Anderson


October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA) The first half hour of the debate was disastrous, but the hour afterward was grating. It was merely a rehash of the first debate, only in a new arena and with new stakes. This is why the last question created such a poignant moment, or at least the illusion of one. After the debate had careened through lies and hollow promises about health care, misgivings and misinformation about Russia and Syria, and a vast array heated interruptions and hollow buzzwords, a man named Karl Becker asked the two candidates to name one thing they respected about the other. Hillary Clinton said she respected Donald Trump’s children. Donald Trump said he respected Hillary Clinton’s tenacity. And so the debate, which had began on such cold and uncertain terms, ended on a strangely affable note.

This made the debate feel like an inverse of the last one. Where the candidates shook hands and talked of policy in the opening of the last debate, here they stared each other down and almost immediately ripped into each other over their intensely personal scandals. Where Trump gradually fell apart in the last debate, here he appeared to slowly pull himself together. Where the last debate had ended with bitterness and resentment, here the debate ended on a note of mutual understanding. And that matters. Trump did not win the debate by any measure. He was everything that critics complained about in the first debate: rude, immature, unfocused. But, because of the way the debate unfolded, he was spared from complete annihilation. If Trump was unable to

gain ground in the debate, Clinton was unable to deliver the killing blow to his campaign. Hillary Clinton could have easily harped on the Trump tape for the entire debate--it’s certainly an issue that has seemed omnipresent over the past couple of days. But character assassination has never been Clinton’s style, which is why she allowed Trump to change the debate’s direction. In essence, Trump manipulated Hillary’s propensity to take the high road so he could slip out of a tight spot. This could end up creating the illusion that Trump has successfully put the tape behind him, and may alleviate some of the fallout from the vast number of GOP officials who have jumped ship. This doesn’t mean he won, it only means that the debate has left the Trump campaign on shaky ground.


Everything is still tentative at this point. If the debates have shown us anything, it’s that hope for clarity and finality is unrealistic at best and Panglossian at worst. This election has removed the facade from our partisan and irrational perception of politics. The persistence of Trump even after such damning evidence of misconduct tells us this much. After every scandal, every debate, and even after the election, the ideas and prejudices that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton represent will remain. Ultimately, the real takeaway from the second debate is that between the bitterness of our politics, and the absurdity of this election in particular, the fleeting moments of respect that were shown in the last seconds of the debate are all the common ground we have left.

Should living in the dark be part of being a Beaver? Student-athletes adjust to new schedule


t’s obvious why Seattle Public Schools voted to push school start and end times forward an hour this year. The new bell schedule pertains to a teenager’s natural body clock, beClaire Moriarty cause, as we all probably Opinions Editor know, it can be difficult to fall asleep before 11 p.m. According to the National Sleep Foundation, teens need 8 to 10 hours of sleep every night. The new start time was set in place in an effort to make it easier for students to get the rest they need. But how much thought has been given to the adverse effects the later start and end times have on some of us? Mornings thus far have been much less painful than they were last year. They’re more relaxed. The occasional mad dash to the car with shoes untied still occurs, but there’s definitely less of a sense of urgency in the race to beat the bell. It is almost disorienting, waking up to the feeling of having actually gotten enough sleep the night before. This is because, for many students, even now, it happens so rarely. The new schedule may have come as a less than welcome change for students with time-consuming after school activities, especially athletes. Dedicated participants in school athletics practice five to six days a week for two hours, discounting game days. That’s an added two hours into the afternoon of a student-athlete (or morning, if you’re a swimmer), which puts them at home and doing homework later, which puts them in bed--you guessed it--later. The new schedule also hangs new responsibilities on the parents of some student-athletes, due to the

lack of available transportation to away games. The school is unable to provide buses to games, because district buses would only be able to pick students up at 1 p.m. So, instead of missing several class periods, athletes have to secure their own rides. For parents who work, this proves exhausting and inconvenient. “It’s definitely been an interesting situation for all of the athletic teams,” Varsity soccer coach Meghan Miller said. Interesting is one word for it. Soccer and football both practice on the field every day. Since Ballard’s field becomes a public park at 7

p.m., there is a shorter window of time in which to finish practices. Because of this, these two programs have to share the field for a half hour a day, because soccer practices from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. and football practices from 5 to 7 p.m., with the exception of Wednesdays, when this schedule flips and soccer plays later. The field is not lit. What will they do when Daylight Savings comes around? Since we’ll be inside the building from when it’s dark in the morning to when it’s starting to get dark again, perhaps everyone should start taking Vitamin D supplements. “It’s kind of been a game of musical chairs,” Miller said. “I think everyone’s doing the best they can with what we have and everyone is working hard and we just kind of put a smile on our face and deal with it because we don’t really have another choice. That’s just part of what it is to be a Beaver.” The words ring true, especially right now. Adjusting to change takes grit, just like playing sports, but there’s no reason why we can’t handle it. Soccer players congregate for an early evening game. (Ana Marbett)



October 18, 2016 Ballard High School (Seattle, WA)


“Guys, James Madison looks kind of like Kevin Spacey.”

“Dam time is more like Sham time if you ask me.”

“One Minute is an eternity in Ant Time.”

“Slavs are just funny Russians.”

“I showed him 25 memes today. He was overwhelmed, to say the least.”

“There wasn’t any candy, so I bailed.”



• PSAT for sophomores and juniors - October 19 • Key Club blood drive - October 21 • The Foreigner (Fall Play) - October 20, 21, 22 • Student Senate meeting - October 27 • Volleyball Metro playoffs - October 25, 27 • Two hour early release - October 26 • Freshman primary elections - November 1 • Fall orchestra concert - November 2 • Fall band concert - November 3 • Freshman general elections - November 8 • Election day - November 8 • 1st Quarter ends - November 10 • Veteran’s day, no school - November 11 • Awareness week (morning assembly Friday) - November 14-18 • 24-Hour Plays - Starting Thursday night, November 17


Flagpole shortened for ease of access during countless national tragedies School board doing its part against gun violence


ollowing the 296th mass shooting in the United States A&E Editor this year, the school board unanimously voted to shorten the main flag pole from 50 to 25 feet, citing the cost of working hours spent lowering and raising the flag.

Jackson Croy

“We really spent a lot of time on the math,” School board director Steven Joannes said. “A 50-foot flag pole is raised and lowered for nearly eight hours a month. After only two months of that, it’s just cheaper to get a shorter flagpole and not pay a union worker to spend valuable time raising and lowering the flag.” Students expressed confusion regarding the new shortened flagpole. “I am a bit unclear as to what the new flagpole means,” junior Sarah Michaels said. “Is it permanently at half staff, or is it just that half staff is much lower now than it was before? And how do we know when we’re in a state of national tragedy?” When asked what will become of the flag when it is not meant to be at half staff, a board member said “it’s just easier this way. The janitor responsible will spend far less time raising and lowering the flag now.” She followed up by saying that this budget surplus will be used to purchase new Grow-Lite™ bulbs for the classrooms inside the pods, “to promote mental health and vitamin D intake of the students.” She cites poor mental health as the primary reason for gun violence. Before the change, janitor Terry Marshall was responsible for flagpole related maintenance. “I Used to have an app on my phone called HalfStaff, and it would notify me when some sort of national tragedy struck, and tell me to lower the flag” said Marshall. “I had to delete it though, because my battery died too fast when the app was on there. I’m glad they lowered that damn thing.”

Talisman, October 18, 2016  
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