C Magazine Vol. 12 Edition 1

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C MAGAZINE October 2023 • Volume 12 Issue 1 Dear readers, Welcome to C Magazine’s first issue of the 2023-2024 school year! We are so happy to be back and can’t wait for another year of student journalism. We hope this issue starts your school year off on the right foot — whether you are a graduating senior, a freshman new to campus, or somewhere in between. Curl up and get cozy with this issue of C Magazine, only made possible by our new staff members here in MAC103. Our cover features a collage of political symbols and figures highlighting the diverse voices that make up our country. Written by Lily Daniel, Disha Manayilakath and Anika Raffle, “A Generation Rising” on page 13, investigates the future of political participation, led by our newest voters: Generation Z. Kicking off our featured artist series this year, “Fostering Art” by Esther Chung and Martina Meyerfreund on page 27 introduces us to Paly senior Hana Foster, a lifelong artist who has found her style in a middle ground between cartoonism and realism. If you’ve ever wondered how you compare in general trivia to high school seniors these days, you can find out by reading “Are you Smarter than a Senior?” on page 25. Our Editorsin-Chief surveyed nearly 150 of this year’s graduating class, and the results may surprise you. “Not Just a Drop in the Ocean” on page 20, by Jake Papp

and Sarah Sheaffer, takes a look at the impact of tourism on natural ecosystems. They discuss the detrimental effects that simply taking a shell from the beach may have, and discover solutions to solve these environmental problems. For several years now, Brandy Melville and other clothing brands aimed towards teenagers have been labeling, or as writers Lily Jeffrey and Alice Sheffer write — mislabeling — their clothes as one size fits all. Page 6’s “A Perfect Fit for (Sm)all” delves into the negative effects this misleading phenomenon has on the brands’ market audiences. Written by Katelyn Pegg and Gin Williams, “Rewriting the Past” on page 36, explores the practice of changing the lyrics of songs for their respective re-releases, and the pressure that may be on a particular group of artists to do so. We hope at least one of our newest stories piques your intrest, introduces you to something new, or provides a fresh perspective to a familiar topic. If you are interested in reading more from C Magazine, we hope that you keep up with our coming print issues as we continue through our newest volume, or find online exclusives and past print stories online at cmagazine.org. Happy reading! Scarlett Cummings, Siena Dunn, Brooke Hudacek and Zeke Morrison


Find these stories and more at cmagazine.org

Fruit Fusion Fun!

A Snapshot of Senior Year

Invisible Disabilities

By Anika Raffle

By Martina Meyerfreund

By Mary Henderson

thanks TO OUR



The Bakhash Family Shahla Chehrazi Sung Cho Cindy Cleary Tim Cleary Christopher Cummings The Daniel Family Ed Dunn Linda Farwell Robert Henderson Gene Lebel The Morrison Family The Pegg Family Joan Pinkvoss Stephen Raffle Misha Renclair Gael Solos Vijayashree Srinivasan Lorna Thornton The Williams Family Jingjing Xu Sha Yu Qu Zhou


Publication Policy C Magazine, an arts and culture magazine published by the students in Palo Alto High School’s Magazine Journalism class, is a designated open forum for student expression and discussion of issues of concern to its readership. C Magazine is distributed to its readers and the student body at no cost. Printing & Distribution C Magazine is printed 5 times a year in October, December, February, April and May by aPrintis in Pleasanton, CA. C Magazine is distributed on campus and mailed to sponsors by Palo Alto High School. All C Magazine stories are available on cmagazine.org. Advertising The staff publishes advertisements with signed contracts, providing they are not deemed by the staff inappropriate for the magazine’s audience. For more information about advertising with C Magazine, please contact business manager Saachi Nagar at businesscmagazine@gmail.com. Letters to the Editors The C Magazine staff welcomes letters to the editors but reserve the right to edit all submissions for length, grammar, potential libel, invasion of privacy and obscenity. Send all letters to eicscmagazine@gmail.com or to 50 Embarcadero Rd., Palo Alto, CA 94301.

Dunn, Brooke Hudacek, Zeke

Creative Directors Esther Chung, Martina Meyerfreund


Business Manager

Managing Editors

Saachi Nagar

Sarah Bakhash, Lily Daniel,


Mary Henderson, Anika Raffle

Brian Wilson

Online Editor-in-Chief

Table of Contents Alessandra Chandler

Scarlett Cummings, Siena

Sarah Sheaffer Social Media Manager Jake Papp

Cover Brooke Hudacek, Zeke Morrison

Staff Writers Sophia Dong, Lily Jeffrey, Abbie Karel, Kayley Ko, Disha Manayilakath, Ria Mirchandani, Katelyn Pegg, Alice Sheffer, Gin Williams, Sophia Zhang Illustrators Sarah Bakash, Sabela Chelba, Esther Chung, Scarlett Cummings, Hana Foster, Brooke Hudacek, Lily Jeffery, Olive Lindstrom, Zeke Morrison, Katelyn Pegg, River Wu

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culture A Perfect Fit For (Sm)all


Dupes on a Dime


A Generation Rising


Put Your Best Foot Forward


Not Just a Drop in the Ocean


Are You Smarter Than a Senior?


arts Fostering Art


Creature of the Night


Metal Wonderland


Music Rewriting the Past


Listening for Success


Selling Sound




perfect fit


One-size-fits-all clothing affects today’s youth in unexpected ways


idden behind layers of lace trim of its convenience and assumed inclusivi- only manufacture a specific size and label and cherubic graphics lie many ty, in reality, it is the opposite. Most of the it one-size-fits-all. Many companies do this complicated feelings towards clothes labeled one-size-fits-all, in stores because it’s cheaper and less complicated Brandy Melville. Some people such as Brandy Melville, than producing garments of multiple sizes. love and religiously wear actually fit people However, only people who fit into the man“It the carefully curated who wear a range ufacturer’s chosen size can wear the clothjust fits everyone aesthetic, but others of extra small to ing as intended. can only admire it due medium. People of different sizes may be able awkwardly.” to the brand’s rigid “[One-size-fits- to wear one-size-fits-all clothing, but the Ella Kogelnik, 11 one-size-fits-all clothing all sizing] suggests fit will vary drastically from body to body. metric. something that could Some clothing items are sized differently to Brandy Melville’s one-sizebe very harmful. Especially accommodate for this, meaning that some fits-all approach has been a huge contro- because one-size-fits-all is realistically a size one-size-fits-all clothes might be bigger versy since the brand was created. While small,” an anonymous Paly student said. than others. Still, the differently-sized garsome say one-size-fits-all is discriminatory Unsurprisingly, not “all” people fit into ments do not fit many bodies. and exclusive, others say it’s convenient these smaller sizes. This can “I really do like some of for those who fit the size. No matter what, upset those who wish they the sweatpants [Bran“I many people still wonder if one-size-fits-all could fit into the trendy dy Melville] has befelt humbled, really fits all. clothes their peers can cause it’s a tighter The Merriam-Webster dictionary de- wear. look on some peoactually.” fines one-size-fits-all as “designed to conDespite many oneple and a baggier Catarina Marchesi, form to all shapes and sizes.” size-fits-all stores only look on other peo10 In simpler words, every person should fit carrying sizes 0-4 (XS-M), ple,” sophomore Cainto the same clothes if they have this siz- the average American woman tarina Marchesi said. ing label. One might think this would mean wears a size 16 (XL), according to a 2016 According to the Centers for stretchier materials, adjustable straps, ad- study by Forbes. That being said, the one- Disease Control and Prevention, the averjustable waistbands and other accommo- size-fits-all sizing metric only applies to a age waist size for girls between the ages of dations. However, for many stores, this is very small minority of American women. 13-19 is 32.6 inches, which is, on average, not the case. Many one-size-fits-all labeled Additionally, the idea of one-size-fits-all a medium to large bottom. However, many clothing is actually designed for a very is highly misleading; this sizing metric isn’t one-size-fits-all stores only carry extra-small small range of sizes, excluding those who actually a universal size. to small, sometimes fitting a medium if the wear larger sizes. Instead of carrying all, or a majority of clothes are stretchy. In order to fit into these While the concept sounds great because available sizes, some companies choose to sizes, one would need a 25-inch waist.

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Height 5’7”

Height 5’4”

Bust 32A-34C

Bust 34DD

Waist 25”

Waist 39”

Typical One-Size-Fits-All Body

Average Female American Body

Size 0-4

Size 16


“I think they tried to make [Brandy said about Brandy Melville. “The T-shirts [Brandy Melville’s] clothes, in the back of Melville clothes] from extra small to me- would not fit my back.” their mind, they must know that it isn’t for dium, and it just fits everyone awkwardly,” Many other shoppers felt everyone,” Sarig said. junior Ella Kogelnik said. similar emotions and left Many shoppers have “I To fit into these clothes as designed, one these stores without havmentioned that they feel has to be roughly 5’7” and have a chest no ing bought anything bad about the clothes felt guilty larger than a C-cup. This contrasts heavily because the clothes they purchased after wearing the with the average American woman, who is wouldn’t fit due to the buying from Brandy 5’4”, has a 39-inch waist, a cup size of DD, lack of inclusive sizing. Melville. clothes.” according to Healthline. “[I was] full-on cry“It was kind of weird,” Anonymous “Certain people won’t be able to shop at ing in the dressing room an anonymous student this so-called ‘one-size-fits-all’ store because because the jeans didn’t fit said. “I felt guilty wearing the the sizes range from me,” an anonymous student said. clothes.” XS to M at the Despite the many people who The experience of those who cannot “They best,” junior continue to shop at Brandy Mel- fit into one-size-fits-all sizing can be even Emma Yang ville, some actively choose to more negative than those who do fit. must know that said. shop elsewhere in order to boy“For people who don’t fit into the clothes, it isn’t for everyone.” cott their exclusive sizing. E v e n it can be really depressing,” Sarig said. Sivan Sarig, 11 though some “I haven’t been there since I Although one-size-fits-all can have adenjoy how the learned it’s one-size-fits-all, when verse effects on individuals, in some cases, look of one-sizeit’s actually a very small size,” Sivan it is acknowledged as a good thing. fits-all clothing differs Sarig, a fellow Bay Area student, said. Many people fit the smaller size range based on everyone’s unique body type, othIn many instances, shoppers at one-size- and thus benefit from the one-size-fitsers are not able to fit into them at all, caus- fits-all stores will leave the building feeling all clothes these stores sell. For those who ing comparison among shoppers. worse, even if they fit into the clothing. know they fit the size, it can make shopping “I felt humbled, actually,” Marchesi “Even for the people who do fit into quicker and simpler.

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“Sometimes it’s easier to shop at a one- people think that they are abnormal be- stead of simply buying different sizes. size-fits-all store because you know you’re cause they do not fit into the label of “all.” “[One-size-fits-all clothing] makes peothat size, but if you’re not that size, it’s inExclusion based on body size makes ple think that there’s only one size they can convenient,” Kogelnik said. people feel negativebe, and one size they should be,” Some people also think that stores tar- ly about themMarchesi said. “But that’s not geting a specific body type are a good thing selves. When true. Everybody’s their own “Everbody’s because the clothes will be catered to flatter such a popperson.” that specific body shape. ular and their own person.” “I do think it’s beneficial to have a store mainstream Catarina Marchesi, made for smaller-sized people,” Yang said. c o m p a n y 10 What some might view as a problem perpetuates this with one-size-fits-all clothing lies not with type of exclusion, the clothes or the size itself, but with how it can make people feel even they are marketed. It’s one thing to have worse. only one specific size, but another to misOut of the 19 students who responded lead customers by marketing a minority to a survey about this topic, 100% do not body size as one-sizebelieve that one-size-fits-all really does fits-all. fit all. “One The word “I think [one-size-fits-all is] a ‘all’ invery misleading sentence and Text and design by LILY JEFFERY and size definitely cludes largvery misleading sizing. One ALICE SHEFFER • Art by LILY JEFFERY • doesn’t fit all.” er sizes and size definitely doesn’t fit all,” Photos by ALICE SHEFFER • Modeled Emma Yang, 11 by ISABELLE CARLSON, NINA FAUST, many believe Yang said. it should not be One-size-fits-all clothing can KALIOPE HENDERSHOT, ELSA LAGERused if only smaller make individuals feel the need to BLAD, BELA MEYERS, TARIKA PILLAY, LILY sizes are sold. This statement may make change their bodies to fit the clothes, in- WILLIAMS and KATHERINE ZANER


dupes on a



When is it ethical to purchase a duplicate product?

ou walk into a store and see the most beautiful pair of ethical concerns, particularly about their impact on the increase of shoes. You love the design, you love the material and you fast fashion and the effect of dupes on small businesses trying to love the way they fit. However, you check the price tag stay alive. Large companies copying designs from smaller businessand see they cost $300. After searching the web you find a pair of es can cause these independent franchises to struggle, as they have identical shoes, but for a third of the price. Now you get your new to compete to sell a similar product, but with far fewer resources. pair of shoes, and save a large amount of money. Paly senior Anne Threlkeld owns her own independent busiIn the world of beauty, cosmetics and fashion, these knockoff ness, called Dinoyarn. Threlkeld spends hours perfecting each products have coined the term “dupe.” Short crochet creation she sells, purchasing specific for duplicate, it signifies a product that colors and types of yarn. closely replicates the characteristics of a “It takes a lot of time to hand make “There isn’t really more expensive or prestigious brand. Due different tops or whatever item you’re sellto their accessibility and affordability, the ing, because when you crochet, you can’t a good way to claim dupe industry’s popularity has exploded in machine produce,” Threlkeld said. “Sellsomething as your recent years. ing [the products] for cheap and then not As inflation rises, consumers are lookpaying the people that are making those own.” ing for affordable products to purchase designs is super unethical and also sucks for - CORAL without breaking the bank, especially in the small businesses because they’re getting the cosmetic industry where there are milrobbed of their hard work.” JOHNSON, 12 lions of nearly identical products from difAccording to Threlkeld, there are rules ferent brands. to follow in the crochet world. The gener“I usually get dupes from Essence Skinal shape of the products can be similar, but care which has cheap dupes of ELF Makeup,” reproducing the actual patterns stitch for stitch is Paly junior and avid user of cosmetic dupes Aria Shah said. “I frowned upon. like the convenience of being able to go to CVS or Target to get “So the rule in the community is, you can use [products] as inthem.” spiration but you can’t copy it,” Threlkeld said. “You have to give However, the rapid rise of dupes is starting to raise important credit where credit’s due.”


real 10 • cmagazine.org



Text and design by ABIGAL KAREL and KAYLEY KO • Art by SABELA CHELBA • Modeled by ARIA SHAH

Real Dolce & Gabbana Lucia Mini Lizard Bag: $1,606.50

Amazon dupe: $96.77

Unfortunately, most of these fast fashion businesses overtly take dustry as it’s easier for fast fashion brands to copy other designs aspects of a design or product advertisement and frame it as their instead of making originals. This especially applies to the youth original content. and teen clothing industry, causing it to be super repetitive. Stores Senior Coral Johnson is another Paly crochet content creator have many of the same type of product, all slightly different variwho sells her products online. She makes short tutorials on TikTok ations of each other. and YouTube, and this advertising is crucial to the sales of her The appeal can be understandable though. Why buy a $78 products. Skim’s dress when there are hundreds of oth“I had this girl on Tiktok copy my tuer versions on Amazon for less than half torial,” Johnson said. “She basically said the price? exactly what I had said but filmed her “I like the According to Paly Economics teacher own tutorial, even though it was the exGrant Blackburn, it comes down the valconvenience of being able act same as mine.” ues of consumers and what they really Copying is prominent in the small to go to CVS or Target to care about in the product. business world, and creators are strugget them.” gling. As for right now, there doesn’t “We call this price elasticity,” Blackseem to be a great solution to this probburn said. “How much does - ARIA SHAH, 11 lem. price matter to you when you “There isn’t really a good way to go to purchase something? claim something as your own,” Johnson If price matters to you said. “Within the community even, people a lot then you’re gonna buy knockoff products. copy each other all the time and there is just no real way to hold You’re gonna use coupons. You’re looking for one another accountable.” Furthermore, one of the most interesting parts of the clothing discounts. You’re gonna wait for the sale. You industry that dupes are having an effect on is the creative diversity understand that you’re getting lower quality, but in each piece of clothing. By having wide ranges of colors and pat- you may want the brand association but don’t terns to pick from, consumers are able to choose the clothing they want to pay for it.” Social media has also increased the popularfeel most comfortable expressing themselves in. Due to dupes, there is less creative diversity in the clothing in- ity of dupes. Instagram influencers advertising


$10 Amazon dupes are becoming more and more common, tion” which went viral as a duplicate product to the “Drunk Elewhile on Tiktok “#dupe” has been viewed over 5.3 billion times. phant D-Bronzi bronzing drops.” When applied, most reviewers “The brand name matters to me because of the features that noted the Loreal product seemingly has the same effect, but the come with it,” Blackburn said. “That’s part of what I’m paying price for the duplicate product reduces over 66% of the cost. for when I get it, so if I’m going to buy a knockoff it’s because I “I think it’s people’s mindset that needs to be changed,” Johnwant something that either can’t be son said. “If it’s cheaper, they’re going to acquired normally, or I just don’t be more tempted to buy in bulk instead want to pay for the real product.” of more expensive singular items, but “We call this price Many people online also resoit really comes down to thinking a lot elasticity. How much does nate with this statement, which is about what and where you are purchasonly amplified through social meprice matter to you when you ing from.” dia. Many believe it’s important to recoggo to purchase something?” With the boost from social menize that dupes are essential for customdia’s reach, sales of brands coined ers who cannot afford real brands but - GRANT BLACKBURN, “dupe brands’’ have skyrocketed. still want that certain look. However, ECONOMICS TEACHER This is especially true in the makebefore making a duplicate purchase, it’s up community, drugstore alternavital to understand where the product tives like Elf, Nyx and Maybelline in question is coming from. have replaced high-end brands like As an avid user of dupes, Shah continCharlotte Tilbury, Nars and Too Faced Cosmetics. Products of ues to use them with slight changes to how she purchases them. these duplicate brands show little to no difference when applied, “I like buying dupes because I can save money, but I still think and cost a high percentage less than the original product. that you should know where they are coming from, and if they are An example of this is the trend of the “L’oreal Paris Lumi Glo- ethical or not,” Shah said.



Rare Beauty $23 vs. Amazon Dupe $5.59

Comparing popular cosmetic brands and their common duplicate products

Drunk Elephant $38 vs. Lumi Glotion $16.99

Dior Lip Glow Oil $40 vs. Amazon Dupe $5

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How Gen Z is shaping the political landscape



eneration Z was born into a world already falling apart. With pressing issues growing – such as climate change – and an increasing political divide, politics have never seemed so vital, or so intimidating. As the foundation of our country has evolved, younger generations have shown they are ready to make changes in the systems they were born into by staying informed, using their voices, voting and more. Throughout history, young adults have played vital roles in social advancement and politics. Now, in a time of expanding online news and social media, teenagers around the world have easier access to the spotlight, and they are using it. “When you read about and watch films of past political moments, students and young Americans are prominent,” AP US History teacher Jack Bungarden said. Generation Z is continuing to push for change, even at a local level. “There is a persistent thread of folks [at Paly] who… devote considerable effort to making society better in some form,” Bungarden said. “Their efforts are admirable.” Politics are the cornerstone of both the course of history and day-to-day life. Writer for Paly social activism publication Anthro Magazine and junior Faizan Kashmiri notes the place of politics in people’s lives. “If you don’t involve yourself in politics, you might as well just cut off your feet at that point, because you don’t want any mobility in how you control the world around you,” Kashmiri said. “It’s fundamental to be involved in politics, right? It’s how you yield autonomy

in this world.” While the pressing issues that infiltrate the world around us may seem impossible to change as a teenager, Palo Alto Vice Mayor Greer Stone asserts that young people actually have an advantage in political realms. “Generally young people are not as engaged in the political process,” Stone said. “And so when young people do show up and speak up, it really often makes policymakers pay attention.” Many politicians and citizens acknowledge that political spaces can often be intimidating, even more so for young people, but not every aspect of politics has to be. “There’s often a negative connotation with it [politics],” senior Evelyn Zhang said. “Obviously, it’s very polarizing at this time, but I think it could range.” However, she emphasizes the importance of not letting stereotypes deter younger generations from entering political spaces. “It’s important for us to continue injecting our opinions and our own experiences into politics, because we can’t leave it up to the adults to make decisions on things that are affecting us more than them,” Zhang said. Those who don’t think of themselves as interested in politics can still have a stake in their outcomes. “It [getting involved with politics]

“In Palo Alto... people honestly really want the voices of youth.” Greer Stone, Palo Alto Vice Mayor

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doesn’t just have to be [through] a political club, say, a political affiliation; a lot of it just has to do with fighting for what you believe in,” Zhang said. “And, if that involves political avenue, like approaching the city council or maybe just the school admin, that still is politics… you’re fighting for what you believe needs to be changed in your life and the lives of others.” Politics are much broader than many people think, affecting almost every aspect of people’s lives. “The issue is that you don’t need to be political,

“It [politics] is how you yield autonomy in this world.” Faizan Kashmiri, 11

Text, art and design by LILY DANIEL, DISHA MANAYILAKATH, and ANIKA RAFFLE sure, but your landlord’s political, your President’s political, your mother’s political, your everything around you in life is political, including most notably the people who hold power over you,” Kashmiri said. Although political change is often made in Congress, City Hall or at protests, being ‘political’ doesn’t necessarily involve any of those. Often, it can start as small as opening your phone and skimming the top news stories. “One main thing that people don’t talk about a lot is honestly just staying informed,” Zhang said. Junior Class President Kelly Tanaka believes every student should be educated. “A great way to stay involved is being informed on politics, like reading the news, so you

can have a more diverse and unbiased perspective by having all the facts,” Tanaka said. Staying informed as a community is the single best way to create cultural change, according to the President of the Palo Alto Youth Council and Nueva senior Olivia Chiang. “A lot of the political problems we have in this country and [the] political strife we have is in part due to a lack of education,” Chiang said.

“...It’s important to do some research on the other side [and] hear anecdotes [and] personal experiences so that you can really empathize with them [opposing parties] and better tackle your collaborative dialogue.” Many more emphasize the importance of mending the relationships broken by political divides. “We don’t have to dislike each other just because we disagree with each other,” Stone said. “I think politics has become too much of a ‘I hate you because you’re on the other side of this issue’, and that’s so toxic and detrimental to our democracy.” Being informed can bridge the split between generations, as well as political parties. “Especially in a time where things are changing so fast, with the technology age, there are so many things that a lot of our generation understands on a personal level more so than elders, seniors, et cetera,” Zhang said. Educating yourself on your surroundings is not the only way to make change. Teenagers advocating for their beliefs through international news sources and social media have sparked multiple protests in the past few years that have branched all over the world. “[Protests] are a great way for students to just show that there’s strength in numbers, and it’s often very accessible,” Zhang said. “You just grab a sign, bring a couple of friends, and you can really voice your passion for a cause.” Recently, more organizations, including the Palo Alto City Council, have started seriously taking youth input into

“Everything around you in life is political, including... the people who hold power over you.” Faizan Kashmiri, 11


account. “More of these groups, and even governments as well, are really starting to embrace this idea of youth involvement and recognizing that at the end of the day it [political change] is impacting you [teens] the most, and we need to have your voice actually up at the table,” Stone said. Now, more than ever, is the prime time for young people to step up and make the difference they want to see. The upcoming year is the perfect time to return to Ameri-

ca’s political roots in the 2024 election. Palo Alto City Council member Julie Lythcott-Haims observes from her position in local government how essential it is for everyone to vote. “The policies enacted by our local, state and national governing bodies are the rules that knit our human community together and impact everything from where we can live to whom we can love,” Lythcott-Haims said. While national elections get the most

media attention, it is equally as important to participate at a local level. “So much of the community and the things that we [The City Council] oftentimes are voting on, especially issues of climate change, are going to impact you the most,” Stone said. Voting is not the only way to be involved in the election. For the majority of

Get Involved Why is this important?

[Protests] are a great way for students to just show that there’s strength in numbers, and it’s often very accessible.

Evelyn Zhang, 12



of Americans voted in the 2020 presidential election. 36.8% of eligible voters in 2022 were unregistered.

Statista.com 16 • cmagazine.org

189 years it took for American citizens, regardless of race or gender, to legally have the right to vote


...people in the 19th and 20th century died attempting to secure a right that is granted to all citizens and, yet, was not. People were murdered for the offense of attempting to vote or even attempting to register to vote.

Jack Bungarden, AP US History teacher

high schoolers who are not yet old enough to vote, the most influential way to affect the election is by sharing their beliefs. “Simply educating your parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles about the importance of conservation and other concepts [is a way teenagers can be involved],” Stone said. “...They didn’t grow up with that mindset [that issues like environmental change are important], whereas your generation did.” There is a place for youth voices in every area of Palo Alto and society as a whole. “Especially in Palo Alto, there’s so many unique opportunities to get involved where people honestly really want the voices of youth, sometimes even more than adults in the communities,” Stone said. In a time of political change, many believe it is vital for younger generations to make their voices heard. “The opportunities are limitless for young people,” Chiang said. “It’s just a matter of your passion.”




to vote as a 16 or 17 year old at registertovote.ca.gov

in local, state, and national elections once 18

on current events and upcoming elections




yourself and others on important topics

for issues that you care about

with local organizations, attend city council meetings CULTURE • 17

Nike Dunk Low Disrupt

Adidas Forum Low

Mary Jane Dr. Martens

I usually just wear plain white sneakers, but I love my Adidas Forum Lows because they add a pop of color to my outfit, and I’m just a fan of the blue and white color combo. Plus there is always the bonus of matching with Martina!” -BROOKE HUDACEK, 12

Paly Style

PRESENTS: How C Magazine style is reflected through staff members shoes

I love my Boston clogs because they’re super easy to just throw on in the morning, and they go with everything. I’ve also worn them all over the world in many different situations, and they have been holding up pretty well. They’re indestructible.” -ZEKE MORRISON, 12

Adidas Gazelle

18 • cmagazine.org

I like Spezials because of the unique color ways that they have, and how they can spice up any fit. If I’m wearing just plain jeans and a plain white shirt they make my outfit a lot more exciting.” -SCARLETT CUMMINGS, 12

Adidas Handball Spezial

I love Mary Jane Doc Martens because they make me feel powerful since they give me an additional two inches of height.” -SIENA DUNN, 12

QR Code to Paly Style Instagram!


Foot Forward Paly style is an Instagram account consisting of a collection

of unique outfits worn by Palo Alto High School Students. The account, started by graduates Dora Pang and Shiki Yama, with C Magazine, is an effort to capture the creative style of Paly students. The account was design to showcase the self-expression and individuality of students, and how they choose to make their outfits a reflection of their personality and interests.

Birkenstock Boston

Birkenstock Arizona Text and design by ESTHER CHUNG. MARTINA MEYERFREUND and SAACHI NAGAR • Art by ESTHER CHUNG


not just a


in the

OCEAN taking beach souvenirs Has more impact than most expect

20 • cmagazine.org


s vacant beaches become crowded tourist attractions, many love to comb through the warm sand and cool water for shells and rocks to take home. Taking home beach souvenirs started as a fairly harmless, fun task, but in recent years, overconsumption of the shells has brought the true impact of the gathering into question. In 2015, a study published in PLoS One was conducted on the subject after a mass disappearance of marine life on an Iberian Beach. They took two sets of monthly surveys spanning three years, around 30 years apart, and noticed an extreme drop in shells and marine life. The factor that followed this trend perfectly? Tourism. After a collection of similar studies was released, the connection was undeniable. Greg Finklestien, a Naturalist for the Pacific Beach Coalition, has been working to educate people on the subject of over-collecting shells for years. “There are times where animals repurpose those shells,” Finkelstein said. “There are other times where even if the shells aren’t being occupied, they may still have creatures living on them like algaes.” People who are frequent shell collectors may believe they’re just taking surplus but accidentally bring a ten-legged

friend home with them – a mistake that is made more times than not. It’s not just the shells whose disappearance is noticed – seemingly smaller parts of the beach are also missed when they’re taken. “The seaweed is part of the ecosystem here,” Finkelstein said. “We could never run out of seaweed, but it needs to be at the right place at the right time.” Finkelstein explained that he encountered a woman taking home pounds of seaweed for decorations, and quickly ran to stop her. Basically what happens is flies and other bugs live and lay their eggs inside the kelp on the shore,” Finkelstein said. “Native birds and migratory birds find their source of food in kelp fly larva.” When the seaweed or kelp is removed, the birds lose their source of food, as well as their instinctual marker on where to rest. While most species have learned to adapt to long flights with extreme endurance, losing all kinds of landing ground entirely can be detrimental. “It’s like working all day and coming home to someone chasing you around your house,” Finkelstein said. The dangerous environmental effects of collecting shells are not primarily caused by an individual taking a single shell home with them. “As long as [collecting] is not causing direct harm, it’s ok,” Finkelstein said.

"It’s like working all day and coming home to someone chasing you around your house." - Greg Finkelstein, Pacific Beach Coalition Naturalist


The real trouble lies with the companies mass-producing shell jewelry and polished minerals, who comb through hundreds of thousands of pounds of material and rip entire ecosystems of marine life from their places. Coastal cities like Kanyakumari in southern India are especially targeted by companies selling seashell souvenirs, who have little regard for life on beaches, taking heaps of shells with living creatures still inside. The negative effects of tourism and shell companies go further than the mass removal of beach products. Beaches across the world are constantly battling against loads of debris and trash, threatening the very source of life for wildlife species. Hannah Nusser, former president of the Surfrider Club at Gunn High School, has worked to spread awareness about human impacts on beaches and aims to increase local participation in coastal beach clean-ups. “My main goal was increasing club attendance which would lead to an increase of awareness and cleanup attendances,” Nusser said. “The larger the group of students attending meetings, the larger the impact the Surfrider Club could have.” The Surfrider Foundation is a worldwide organization committed to the protection and enjoyment of our oceans and beaches. Despite their universal reach, their efforts still only stretch so far, with the majority population disregarding their opportunities and, often unknowingly, actually working against them. “The Surfrider Foundation does its best in cleaning local bodies of water, with so many different chapters around the country, but there is only so much you

can do when the true problem is overconsumption and single use products,” Nusser said. Although beach wildlife disruption is an overwhelming, seemingly unstoppable problem, there are always actions we can take to promote healthy living in natural environments. “Most high schools in the Bay Area have a Surfrider Club which I highly recommend high school students look into,” Nusser said. “This is a really easy way to get involved in your local community and make an impact.” On the Paly campus, the Beach Clean Up Club is an easy way to get involved in the preservation. Run by co-presidents and Paly seniors Alessandra Chandler and Kali Ressi di Servia, the club makes monthly trips to local beaches and baylands, picking up hundreds of pounds of trash and keeping our coasts healthy. “Because we are in such a beachy state, a lot of pollution gets dumped in [the ocean],” Chandler said. “I think awareness is very important.” If monthly commitments like the Beach Clean Up Club or Surfrider Foundation seem unattainable, there are other ways one can make a positive impact on our beaches without a large impact on their day-to-day lives. At times, this can even be the most effective solution. “Living a more sustainable lifestyle is a way to tackle the source of the issue of ocean and marine life pollution,” Nusser said. “This can include opting for reusable products, donating clothes and products, and shopping secondhand.” Whether it be leaving the shells on beaches or keeping track of what you use on and off the sand, there are millions of proactive and subtle ways one can be more respectful to our coastal utopias. “I think it’s important for people to be able to have a connection to the ocean,” Finkelstein said. “Because if you don’t get people to care about it, no one’s going to protect it.”

"Because we’re in such a beachy state, a lot of pollution gest dumped in [the ocean]."

- Alessandra Chandler, Co-President of the Beach Clean Up Club

Text and design by JAKE PAPP and SARAH SHEAFFER • Photos courtesy of ALESSANDRA CHANDLER 22 • cmagazine.org

(From left to right) Saachi Nagar, Kali Ressi di Cervia, Olivia Lindstrom, Hannah Fung, Alessandra Chandler and Sarah Sheaffer on a monthly trip for Palo Alto High School’s Beach Clean Up Club.


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A. o

C. 4

B. 2

D. 6

2. What is the most populous country? A. CHINA




3. Solve for x. x=6 ÷ 2(1 + 2)

Take the quiz to the right and then flip the page to see how you compare to the class of ‘24! name

1. I have 6 eggs. if I break 2, fry 2, and eat 2, how many eggs do I have left?

A. 1

C. 6

B. 2

D. 9

4. How many adjectives are in the sentence: “Bill is a silly boy who makes rude noises in class.” A. o

C. 2

B. 1

D. 3

5. Which state is Kansas?

date B


6. Who was the 5th president of the United States? A. MONROE




7. What did the C in C Magazine originally stand for? A. CULTURE




8. How many olympic rings are there? A. 3

C. 5

B. 4

D. 6

9. How many earths can fit in the sun? A. 13,000

C. 1,300,000

B. 15,000

D. 1,500,000

10. What is a group of crows called? Text and design by SCARLETT CUMMINGS, SIENA DUNN and BROOKE HUDACEK • Art by SCARLETT CUMMINGS, BROOKE HUDACEK and ZEKE MORRISON







s ee

w the ho

SENIORS SCORED correct answers are in blue

from 138 students of the class of ‘24

1 3 5

7 9

A. o (12.3%) B. 2 (10.1%) C. 4 (66.7%) D. 6 (10.9%)

A. 1 (46.4%) B. 2 (2.2%) C. 6 (2.9%) D. 9 (48.6%)


A. o (1.4%)

B. INDIA (51.4%) C. USA (4.3%) D. RUSSIA (2.2%)

B. 1 (7.2%) C. 2 (85.5%) D. 3 (5.8%)

A. A (3.6%)

A. MONROE (47.8%)

B. B (3.6%)

B. JACKSON (21%)

C. C (12.3%) D. D (80.4%)

A. CULTURE (53.6%) B. CAMPANILE (43.5%) C. COOLEST (1.4%) D. COLOR (1.4%)

A. 13,000 (2.2%) B. 15,000 (9.4%) C. 1,300,000 (65.2%) D. 1,500,000 (23.2%)

on average, the seniors scored a 26 • cmagazine.org


A. CHINA (42%)


8 10


C. MADISON (25.4%) D. JEFFERSON (5.8%)

A. 3 (2.9%) B. 4 (6.5%) C. 5 (84.1%) D. 6 (6.5%)

A. DESCENT (2.9%) B. FLOCK (19.6%) C. MURDER (73.2%) D. PACK (4.3%)

Hana Foster’s journey in forging and embracing her own art style by seeking inspiration from her family of artists CULTURE ART • 27


t’s surprising to see how a lack of space in someone’s childhood apartment can foster such a long-lasting love for art. Hana Foster, a Paly senior and artist, has worked with art since she was young, and her passion for art has continuously blossomed through inspiration from her family and her environment. “I felt inspired to make art because that’s what I could do in such little space,” Foster said. Ever since first grade, Foster appreciated being able to express her emotions and creativity through art. Classrooms, specifically, have been environments that provide a lot of inspiration and opportunities to make art. “I always felt so happy seeing the art displayed on the little clothing lines that went across the classroom,” Foster said. Over the years, Foster has experimented with various art mediums, striving to adapt

28 • cmagazine.org

to technological changes while simultaneously looking for the option that best represents her art style and quality. Her family has played a crucial role in inspiring and encouraging her love for art. “I have cousins who are also graphic designers, ones who are into film or ones who are technical and like the traditional art style, like the art I do,” Foster said. “[My cousin] is also really into calligraphy, which definitely impacted me in middle school because I became a huge calligraphy kid.” Foster likes experimenting with different mediums, ranging from watercolor to paint-pens.

“When I’m using paint-pens, it tends to be scratchier,” Foster said. “What all my art pieces share in common is usually a person as the focal point.” Regardless of her style, Foster puts effort and dedication into every piece she creates. “My art style depends on the medium I use,” Foster said. “Watercolor takes the longest to work with, so sometimes my art style looks complete and detailed.” As a developing artist, seeing her mom being passionate as a hairstylist taught Foster the beauty and uniqueness of different art styles and compelled her to reconcile and embrace her true art style mainly consisting of watercolor. “I really admire [her art] about her, and I think that definitely gave me some inspiration when I was younger to get into this creativity,” Foster said. In the rapidly changing digital age, many artists like Foster are shifting and adapting to new tools and resources. “Speaking in terms of careers, I had to hop on the procreate [graphics editor app for digital painting and art] train,” Foster

said. “It’s just such a reliable tool. I’ve used it before, for my art class, but it’d be great to invest in Photoshop on my PC and get a drawing tablet.” Even with the advancements of new digital tools like Procreate, Foster continues to utilize traditional art techniques as her favorite mediums are watercolor, oil paint, and paint markers. She sees the artistic authenticity in traditional forms of art, and wants to carry this authenticity forward. “That is obviously what art is for: expression,” Foster said. “I think it’s important to keep doing traditional art, whether that’s on pen and paper or with procreate. It’s important to just express yourself.” Through her experience making art, Foster has also dealt with and faced societal stigmas with certain art styles, with

many people alienating and stereotyping cartoon styles. “When I was younger I learned that

drawing in the cartoonish style or the anime style was looked down upon as you got older,” Foster said. Anime, which is a style popularly associated with culture and entertainment, can sometimes be looked down upon by those who create more traditional forms

of art. Anime can be seen as childish or not original, thus leading many rising artists to shade away from this art style. While Foster acknowledged the stigma, she tried not to dwell on it. Foster prioritizes her own opinions and passions regarding art over others’ opinions, and urges other artists to do the same, whether that means trying out new mediums or styles. “It’s something that I try not to think about too much because whatever, who cares?” Foster said. “Everybody has their own style.”


ART • 29

30 • cmagazine.org


Th e i m p a

alluring Rocky Horr


Pi ct


e th


e Show



ssthe thespotlight spotlight beams, beams, the blue the blue eye- as a transformative step for the gay libershadow eyeshadow and and red lipstick red lipstick on the onstark the ation movement. Later, in 1973, the Amerpale starkface pale of face Dr. Frank of Dr. N. Frank Furter N. in ican Psychiatric Association unanimously Furter his laced, in bedazzled his laced, top bedazzled comes into top the comes au- voted to remove homosexuality from its list into the view. dience’s audience’s The cast view. of The The cast Rocky of HorThe of mental disorders. Rocky ror Picture Horror Show Picture surrounds Show surrounds him in fishnet him The film was revolutionary for its time in fishnet tights, hightights heelsand andhigh returning heels and fansreturnof the as it depicted characters who weren’t mising fans “cult classic” of theenjoy “cultthe classic” show enjoy in themed the show out- treated or ridiculed for their sexuality and in themed outfits. fits. gender expression. Its unapologetic queerThe Rocky Horror Picture Show is a ness continues to inspire fans, like Paly se1975 independent comedy musical directed nior Olive Lindstrom, to be their authentic by Jim Sharman. The film has developed a selves. loyal following and to this day, fans of all “It’s a confidence-boosting piece of ages venture to the iconic midnight live film,” Lindstrom said. “After performance that coincides watching it, I felt like I with the film. The film could express myself is about sweethearts, the way I actualBrad and Janly wanted to. I et, whose car wasn’t afraid “It’s a breaks down anymore.” confidence-boosting in the middle The of a rainRo c k y piece of film. After storm forcHorror watching it, I felt like ing them PicI could express myself the to seek ture way I actually wanted to. I refuge in Show wasn’t afraid anymore.” the manis a tession of tament Dr. Frank to how - Olive Lindstrom, N. Furter, a import“transvestite” ant repre12 mad scientist. sentation At the estate, the can be for peocouple encounters ple in marginalized all sorts of characcommunities. ters including Dr. Frank It’s especially imN. Furter’s newest creation, portant that representation is Rocky. accessible to various audiences. Whether The late 1960s and early 70s was a time it be in movie theaters, living rooms, or of progression for the queer community. even classrooms, almost everyone watchAlthough it may seem slow to people liv- es movies. Composition and Literature of ing in the 21st century, great changes were Visual Media (CLVM) teacher Alanna Wilmade that laid the groundwork for future liamson asserts that the message relayed in progress. Six years prior to the release of the Rocky Horror Picture Show can have the film, the trailblazing Stonewall riots in an extensive impact. New York City “Any time that we have repoccurred, resentation in the media, w h i c h it’s helpful,” Williamserved son said. “Especially because it is such a

32 • cmagazine.org

classic film now, lots of people go watch the show and experience it in person, even if they might not align with the show’s more progressive views.” “It has had such a big impact on the LGBTQ+ and alternative communities because of how out there it is,” Lindstrom said. “It’s funny, there’s swearing, there’s sex, there’s controversy and there’s gayness at a time when that was rare.” The following this film has garnered has not only fostered a sense of belonging for those in the LGBTQ+ community but also had an expansive impact on the fashion and design industries. The Rocky Horror Picture Show broke boundaries with its sequin corsets, shimmering eyeshadow, and shadow and extravagant extravagant hairstyles. hairstyles. “It’s a good callback to camp and it definitely encouraged it within fashion,” Williamson said. Camp is a style and fashion aesthetic known for being over-the-top, yet this extravagance is seen as a way of expressing your authentic self. At first glance, a “campy” outfit may seem tacky, absurd, and even ironic but it is purposefully this way to subvert conventional societal norms. Although the Rocky Horror Picture Show did not invent camp, as it was originally a distinct aspect of the early gay liberation movement, it was one of the first mainstream films to display it positively to such a wide audience. Camp has since gained popularity and become more well-known. The creativity expressed in camp, seen in the film or performance of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, conveys a sense of freedom and joviality that are able to generate a wider appeal to the aesthetic. “After going to Rocky Horror I found myself wanting to dress more out there because I saw all these cool fun gay people and older people dressing in such expressive styles,” Lindstrom said. The Rocky Horror live performance has become a Halloween media staple,

with shows happening almost every week during the month of October. In the Bay Area, the Guild Theatre in Menlo Park and Balboa Theatre in San Francisco are just two of many independent movie theaters that host performances. The live performance utilizes audience interaction and comedy to build a new life within the film itself which creates a unique atmosphere for performancegoers while acting as a vehicle for LGBTQ+ representation. Queer representation is especially important for youth, such as high school students, to view because it can inspire them to be more confident in their identity. “I highly encourage people to go watch the performance,” Lindstrom said. “It’s such a fun event to go see with friends and it is such an iconic piece of pop culture and queer history that it’s too good to miss out on.”


ART • 33

etal Wonderland


How one woman creates upcycled art to transform her home


mong the intertwining aspen trees his career did not end there. of Waverley street, the Ford house “He played for the Cleveland Browns pokes through. A composition of and the Steelers, and when they found out bright stucco walls and sculptures strate- we were dating, they called him… and said, gically placed throughout the yard, the do you want to date white girls or do you shapes and colors are curated to stand out, want to play professional football?” Ford making the house a public art piece for the said. people of Palo Alto to enjoy. After Henry’s professional football caThe owner, 87 year-old Rochelle Ford, reer ended, the now married couple started is a longtime resident of Palo Alto and has to job search in their area. However, each been creating elaborate metal sculptures endeavor and job they took became dull, for almost three decades. From the time so they decided to move throughout the she quit her job 29 years ago, country seeking business Ford has been sharing her opportunities. I’m a mother, I’m a artwork with the comAfter their children friend, I’m a sister, I’m an munity. were born, the Fords She cites her difficult aunt, I’m a grandmother, but decided they needed past as an inspiration when I go into that room and to settle down. Conand major influence on close that door, I’m me.” sequently, the Fords her art. moved to Palo Alto in Rochelle Ford Ford grew up in a pri1977. marily white neighborhood in PennsylvaThey faced stark criticism from the comnia. At the age of 15, she started dating her munity for their interracial marriage. As a husband, Henry Ford. result, the family attempted to subdue the Throughout the mid 20th century, in- backlash they received by restyling their terracial relationships were heavily scruti- house. nized. As a result, the community wasn’t “[Moving in] was very controversial… always accepting of the couple. so, we tried to fit into the historical neighDespite the recent strides in the Civil borhood we were in,” Ford said. “We paintRights movement, the two of them faced ed everything inside and the total outside countless barriers to stay together. white.” Ford was the firstAfrican-American to Later that year, while Ford was in the play as a qarterback at a major college but front yard examining the fresh paint, she

34 • cmagazine.org

saw that the white color had caused all the unique and elaborate features of the house she had fallen in love with to simply blend in. “When it was painted white, you couldn’t even tell there was a balcony,” Ford said. Armed with a paintbrush, Ford began to renovate the house. “When my girlfriends and I painted it, we painted the front,” Ford said. “Then my husband said, ‘well, how about the two sides in the back?’ I said, ‘no, I just care about the front.’” They later hired a painter to finish the remaining walls. The house, now covered in decadent orange and violet paint, created mixed reactions among onlookers. “People either loved it or they hated it, and fortunately all I ever heard was mostly from the people who liked it,” Ford said. “I was always happy to hear that: ‘Oh I like

your house.’” When she was 58, Ford’s expanding interests started compelled her to restyle the house again. Her family had all worked in some form of reusing; her mother sold luxury second-hand clothing, her father sold used cars, while her brother used metal as a goldsmith. It only seemed right that Ford sought out to create art, using the tools of her brother and the mindset of her parents. [Although] my brother uses the same equipment, he does very different things with it,” Ford said. “It [his job] was so technical … I knew I didn’t want to do that, so I taught myself to be a welder.” Ford sparked an interest in welding while on her way to work. “I worked downtown in Palo Alto right next to Ellison’s, which was a car repair shop,” Ford said. “I would go up the alley to Whole Foods to get something for lunch and… I’d see these smashed up cars…I’d just [instantly see] sculptures. Cut this piece up, do this, put these together.” Once Rochelle laid her eyes on the scattered pieces, she could envision the finished state of a metallic creation. Ford makes sculptures from almost every material under the sun, from unused nails to clothes hangers. She often displayed her sculptures in and around her house by holding open exhibitions. People from the community visited her home and observed her art creations; some even knocked on the door to buy pieces. Despite the variety of sculptures Ford creates, there are a few which she holds dear to her heart. One such piece is titled ‘Isadora’. She conceived Isadora’s design while passing by a local car shop. “I picked up some metal [from] an old Volkswagen fender [at] Ellison’s,” Ford said. “The second I s a w

where the headlight was, I saw a face and I knew all that rest would be her hair. I made and called… her Isadora.” The creation became extremely wellliked among prospective buyers. Despite its popularity, Ford refused to remake or sell the sculpture. “Most of the time I just keep it [Isadora] hidden,” Ford said. “Once you make something, people say, ‘oh make me one just like that’… I can’t, I just make one of a kind things.” Although she has since stopped holding exhibitions, Ford recently started to showcase more of her art in her yard, which continues to serve as a public gallery for Palo Alto residents. Ford continues to make sculptures, toiling away hours with metal and heat. As

she’s gotten older, she has forgotten her regular day-to-day activities. “But I haven’t forgotten how to weld,” Ford said. In 2021, Henry Ford passed away. The Fords continue to influence the Palo Alto community through their breathtaking legacy. Grief hasn’t been easy for Rochelle Ford, but her art has been an outlet. Her life melts away when her rods hit the plate. “I’m a mother, I’m a friend, I’m a sister, I’m an aunt, I’m a grandmother, but when I go into that room and close that door, I’m me,” Ford said. Instead of breaking down, she pulls herself into the metalshop. The conviction to make her late husband proud keeps her coming back, creating.

ART ART • 35

Rewriting the Past

How does changing song lyrics reflect greater societal expectations?


e was a moth to the flame, She was holding the matches, whoa,” sings Taylor Swift on her Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) re-record of the song “Better Than Revenge.” When it was released, fans noticed a difference in the lyrics, which originally read “She’s better known for the things she does / On the mattress, whoa,” sparking both criticism and praise from Swift’s fans, as well as reintroducing the idea of artists changing their lyrics to the public. Over the years, some artists like Swift have chosen to make changes to their lyrics for differing reasons: either because the language they used is now considered derogatory and hurtful, or because the artist feels it no longer aligns with their values. “A lot of the time it’s because [artists] don’t want to be canceled, but in some cases, they did or said something that they didn’t mean,” Paly junior and songwriter Ella Hwang said. “They realize they made a mistake or don’t feel that way anymore.” Since the issue of lyric alterations is so unique to each artist’s motives, Hwang recognizes that sometimes artists only change their lyrics because of public pressure, taking away from the original meaning of the song.

“[In some instances] I don’t think it’s necessary just to avoid getting canceled, it’s what they feel and we’re almost listening to their diary,” Hwang said. “It’s just their feelings, and I don’t think they have to feel the need to change it just because the listeners don’t like it.” S o m e argue that changing lyrics takes away the timeless affect of music, as well as the the specific time and place that it was created in. Conversely, some think that lyric changes happen to evolve with the contemporary vernacular and values of the public. “ T i m e s change and what’s considered socially acceptable changes,” junior Juliana Sandoval said, “If the artist feels like that’s the right thing to do, then I think they should change it.” Altering lyrics also brings up the ques-

“In order to further your career, make sure that it lasts, you need to adapt to what your audience wants.”


“[In some instances] I don’t think it’s necessary just to avoid getting canceled, it’s what they feel and we’re almost listening to their diary.”


36 • cmagazine.org

tion of who faces the societal pressure to be ethically sensitive. According to freshman Cole Kristofferson, this pressure is more often put on women, specifically women of color. “ Wo m en are held to a higher standard of keeping their songs clean and appropriate because when they say explicit stuff [lyrics] people think it’s gross, but when men say explicit stuff people think it’s cool,” Kristofferson said. Swift isn’t the only artist to change her lyrics after an original release. According to Billboard Magazine, artists such as Beyonce and Lizzo have corrected ableist slurs in their songs “Grrls” and “Heated” respectively. In fact, less than a week after Beyonce removed the slur from her song, Eminem re-released his album featuring track “Godzilla,” which included the same ableist lyric. While Beyonce changed the verse, Eminems lyric remains unchanged. According to Matthew Gilbert, a PhD candidate in ethnomusicology at Stanford, this speaks to the public’s perception of both artists. “Eminem has built his whole career on being kind of a shock jockey,” Gilbert said. “He’s supposed to say provoca-

tive things, he wants to say provocative things, and so he’s craving backlash. His whole shtick is that he’s not going to tip over when people try to push him on things. So for him not to retract something isn’t super shocking.” Moreover, Gilbert addresses the public pressure on Beyonce to evolve with her audience. “Attitudes change, and she’s just adapting to that,” Gilbert said. “Not necessarily because there’s someone behind the scenes telling her what to do, but because audience’s expectations change.” Gilbert adds that women carry societal pressure to represent the ever changing meaning of womanhood. “They [Women] are doing a lot of cultural work there [in the music industry] to change people’s perceptions of femininity and womanhood,” Gilbert said. “In other words, they have to really be conscious of the kinds of images they’re putting out into the world and the way that they’re being perceived.” Additionally, Gilbert adds that pop music is an industry where women are more likely to be viewed by the

public, and they have to deal with the pressure that comes with being an artist. “I think that genres where women and especially women of color can succeed are often ones that are designed to be broadly, massively popular,” Gilbert said. This discrepancy in expectations reflects broader double standards between men and women in the music industry, and how society expects different groups of celebrities to act and change over time. “I’d say if a white celebrity were to [change their outdated lyrics], or a white man were to do it, they get more praise for doing the bare minimum,” Sandoval said. While the dispute of evolving lyrics is not widely discussed, it is a complex component of the music industry that has yet to be deeply explored. “Audience’s expectations change,” Gilbert said. “In order to further your career, make sure that it lasts, you need to adapt to what your audience wants.” Text and design by KATELYN PEGG and GIN WILLIAMS • Art by SABELA CHELBA , ESTHER CHUNG and KATELYN PEGG

MUSIC • 37

Paly Oplnlons 38 • cmagazine.org

“Cancel culture has gotten out of hand where artists who are doing something that might have been okay at the time are now getting shamed for it, even if it was the social norm then.” MAEVA HERBERT-PAZ, 10

“I personally believe that it's okay for them [artists] to use derogatory terms because they are expressing themselves in their own songs and if they chose those particular lyrics when they made the song, they should stick to it.” RAHUL SHETTY, 11

“I think that artists should be able to change their lyrics if they would like to, without any backlash or harassment from the public. If they don’t want to change their lyrics, I think that’s also fine because it’s [their] creative license.” AMANDA GOODY, 10

“I think that artists shouldn’t change their lyrics because ... it [the song] is supposed to be a picture of the time and a timeframe that lives on forever. I don’t think they should keep changing songs with the times because then it doesn’t make a song timeless.” TREY COLLINS, 12

Many students listening to music while they study know that it’s affecting their brain but many don’t know that they are...




b N r H

ome to roughly 2,000 students, Palo Alto High School is well known for its outstanding education but also its high-pressure academic environment. When students are overworked and struggling to focus on their assignments, many turn to music to aid their study process. But whether music is actually productive is questioned. “[Listening to music] gives me a sense that I’m not doing [work] in silence,” Paly freshman Courtney Taylor said. “It’s comforting.” Across all of the studying methods employed by students, music is a recurring theme. Senior Nupur Kapadia listens to music constantly while studying, using it as controlled background noise. “My brain does better when there’s not one thing to focus on but when there’s extra stimulation coming externally, [apart] from what I’m doing at the moment,” Kapadia said. The type of music students listen to may have a correlation with what subject of class they’re studying for or what kind of homework

Text and design by SARAH BAKHASH and ABBIE KAREL • Art by SARAH BAKHASH they’re working on. “For math or science, I usually end up listening to rap music and RNB,” Kapadia said. “But if it’s something where I need to write like any English work or writing college essays, I tend to listen to [music] without lyrics.” Not only is it a good substitute for controlled background noise, but since music is a source of entertainment, it can make doing work for a boring class more bearable. Avid music listener Lily McCue is a junior at Paly. “Listening to music makes me more motivated to study and can make it a more enjoyable process,” McCue said. Listening to music has been known to improve people’s moods and make it more likely for them to feel confident and motivated, but it is unclear if it changes the amount of information they’ve learned. “I get so bored if I’m just looking at the same problem or doing problems for an hour on end,” Kapadia said. Teachers, however, share a similar perspective on how young brains react to this study tactic, but caution that it doesn’t work for

“For math or science, I usually end up listening to rap music and RNB” -Nupur Kapadia, 12

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y r t un everyone. AP Psychology teacher Chris Farina believes that it solely depends on the type of student. “Any kind of calm-down, tempo, ambient sort of music is probably good [along with] background classical music,” Farina said. “But, of course, there’s individual variation.” Academic pressure is a significant factor in determining if someone chooses to listen to music. With a heavy workload of exams, homework, and extracurriculars, some students use music solely as a coping mechanism for school related stress. This is where individual study habits come into play; some people find that music decompresses pressure and makes stressful situations more bearable. “I’ve been listening to music for probably two years now and I think it kind of makes my work better,” Taylor said. Those who tend to get distracted by white noise sometimes find it easier to concentrate with instrumental versions of their favorite songs. This is because some people find that by directing their attention to a relaxing

rap melody they are less likely to get distracted by other background noise, and find it easier to complete more tasks. “If it’s not that distracting, then you can kind of multitask.” Taylor said. Studying isn’t the only area where music

“Listening to music makes me more mativated to study...” -Lily McCue, 11 benefits the brain. The connection between music and memory is a well-documented and extensively researched area of study. Dr. Michelle Karel studied patients with dementia, who have had positive experiences while listening to music. “It’s fascinating how people with severe dementia can come alive and sing songs they knew from the past, even if they can hardly speak anymore or re-

member much of anything,” Karel said. This is because music can encourage memory revival, where those who have forgotten memories from their past regain memories that were previously forgotten when a familiar song associated with close memories is played. While dementia patients experience a similar trend, the idea of memory revival can also be applied while studying. “[Music] gives you a little bit of an ambient, white noise and helps you focus on whatever it is you’re trying to do,” Farina said. The key to using music as a study aid is balance. It’s up to the student to figure out what type of music is most beneficial and when they should turn it on. “If I’m reading something important like a textbook, or even a book for English, because it’s important information, I need to know what I’m reading,” Kapadia said. “I’ll turn off the music for that because otherwise, I’ll have to go back and reread it.”


e i d



Ticket prices have skyrocketed; the market and artists play a factor


ith flashing lights, confetti dis- mance itself marketplace, persed in the air, thousands of wasn’t the was called “[A] Monopoly can charge highpeople cheer as Taylor Swift fin- only aspect a monopoly er prices, without fear of those ishes her hit song “Karma.” Juliet Frick, a that made the that “hinders freshman at Paly, was one of the estimated price worth competition consumers going someplace 68,500 fans who attended Taylor Swift’s it. and harms else because they can’t really go “The Eras Tour ‘’ in Santa Clara on July “Because consumers” anywhere else.” 28th. of the [high] during a SenFor Frick and many others, the summer ticket prices, ate Judiciary was filled with a variety of local concerts, everyone was hearing, ac- Grant Blackburn, from artists like Dominic Fike, who per- a huge fan cording to Economics Teacher form at smaller venues, to Taylor Swift per- which makes a New York forming at the extravagant Levi’s Stadium. it so much Times article. With a varying price tag on each concert, more fun and “Basically many struggle with finding artists within seeing all the outfits that people came up what that means is that the monopoly can their cost range. with was amazing,” Frick said. charge higher prices, without fear of those Oftentimes, the price of a concert ticket The popularity of an artist is one of the consumers going someplace else because can be a determining factor in whether or biggest factors that contribute to concert they can’t really go anywhere else,” Blacknot somebody ticket prices, burn said. decides to buy so much that This was the case for many “Swifties,” “Because of the [high] ticket tickets to the a seat locat- the nickname for Swift’s fandom, when show. With ed behind the tickets for “The Eras Tour” began. prices, everyone was a huge rapid increases stage will still “While we were trying to get the tickets fan which makes it so much in ticket prices, be costly. to the concert we had to go through Tickmore fun and seeing all the many people “[Swift] is etmaster,” Frick said. “My mom waited for – even the biga big artist, if hours but then Ticketmaster glitched and outfits people came up with gest music fans not the biggest we ended up not getting tickets originally.” was amazing.” – now question artist, so the This technical error was not an original - Juliet Frick, if the concert demand for experience, many fans were unable to buy 10 is worth the tickets is going tickets in the initial sale, leaving them to reprice. to be higher sort to resold tickets. “It was and therefore “[Reselling tickets] makes it a lot harder worth it because I love her music, and they can be more expensive,” Grant Black- for people who just want to buy a reasonit was a super unique experience,” burn, an economics teacher at Paly, said. able ticket at a reasonable price,” BlackFrick said when reflecting on her “But a big part of it [the increase in prices] burn said. experience is monopolies.” When many people want to attend the at “The A monopoly is when an individual or concert, resellers can charge high prices Eras Tour” company has exclusive control over the for the originally affordable tickets they concert. supply or trade of the service. For exam- bought, simply because they were able to Yet, the perfor- ple, Ticketmaster, the world’s largest ticket get in the queue faster.

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not enough to get food on their table. According to Next Gen Personal Finance, the streaming platform Spotify pays artists three thousandths of a dollar to five thousandths of a dollar per stream on average, meaning the average artist gets three thousand to five thousand dollars for a million streams. AcAs a result, many musicians try to comcording to pensate by relying on the revenue earned Business Insider, the avfrom touring, and the promoters, who deerage price of a resale ticket termine the face-value ticket prices, may for “The Eras Tour” was $3,801 set it as an overpriced value. compared to the original lowest Popular mainstream musicians often price of $49. book larger venues. Yet, smaller venues, Ticketmaster is one of the major sites like the Guild Theatre, have more freedom for ticket sales, meaning many Taylor Swift to make business decisions and do not rely fans paid much higher prices than they on monopolies to set concert ticket prices. would have typically had to pay. “Ticket price is generally set by the “I think Ticketmaster has a bad system performing artist and their management/ and a lot of fans didn’t end up getting to agent, in conjunction with the venue. The go to the concert because by the time Tick- amount needs to cover the costs of proetmaster fixed ducing the its glitch,” Frick show and said. “All the paying the “We use an independent comseats were sold talent,” pany [TIXR] that does not acout or unafTom Bailey, tively participate in reselling their fordable which the general own tickets for their own profit.” is really disapmanager of pointing espethe Guild cially for people Theatre, - Tom Bailey, who have never said. General Manager of Guild Theatre gotten to see Due to her before.” the Guild In addition Theatre beto monopolies ing a smalltaking advantage of buyers, many artists’ er performance venue, they are able to set urgency for profits also contribute. Often, their own prices without going through income from streaming platforms alone is larger companies. Tickets for Guild The-

atre performances can instead be purchased directly through the app TIXR at face value. “Unlike so many venues on the Ticketmaster or AXS platforms, we use an independent company that does not actively participate in reselling their own tickets for their own profit,” Bailey said. Since smaller venues like the Guild Theatre have less seats available, their ticket selling platforms have a smaller stock, meaning there’s no resale frenzy around getting them. “We want fans to buy tickets and come to our shows,” Bailey said. “ We seem to be off the radar of most ticket resellers, probably because we sell, for example, about 1/25th the number of tickets for one of our shows as does a ‘reseller market’ show like at Shoreline Amphitheatre.” However, the vibrant and memorable atmosphere that a concert provides overrides any price paid. “[A smaller concert is] still an amazing experience, just very different,” Frick said. “Overall both [types of concerts] are unforgettable experiences.”

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