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Staples High School

March 23, 2018

Volume 86, Issue 7

INSIDE 1 7 11 17 21

News Opinions Features Arts Sports

Join the discussion.

Photo by Melanie Lust ’19

STUDENT DEMONSTRATORS (left to right) Kylie Adler ’19, Emma Greenberg ’18, Peter Clanton ’18, Monique Østbye ’18, Theo Koskoff ’18 and Ella Lederer ’18 were just a few of the students who organized the walkout at Staples High School on March 14.

March 14 walkout honors Parkland

victims, advocates for political activism Eddie Kiev ’20 & Julia Rosier ’18


taples students honored victims of the Parkland shooting by participating in a walkout on March 14 which included speeches advocating for political activism in the student generation. “I think the general consensus was that we wanted to honor the Parkland victims but we also didn’t want to just do moments of silence,” Monique Østbye ’18, Social Activism club member and main organizer of the walkout, said. “We thought that having the silence and then students talking about their involvement in creating change at school and in the community was the most impactful way to show students that they really have a voice and can make a difference.” The nationwide walkout was promoted by students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida after 17 people were killed and 14 others injured on Feb. 14. Parkland student leaders organized protests such as March for Our Lives, #NeverAgain and #EnoughisEnough to spread the word via social media to plan a nationwide walkout. An anonymous freshman was in atten-

dance and reflected on the walkout. “I thought they were both really important.” don’t know what to think about the walkAccording to Principal James D’Amiout. Initially, I thought that it was supposed co, one of the administration’s priorities to be a true protest, but it ended up being was having the walkout appeal to both organized by the school,” the student said. sides of the political spectrum. “One of “I thought the walkout went well though, the things I asked student leaders was if and it sent a pretthey would submit ty strong message.” their remarks, not “Students have free To help organize speech rights in school [...] so much for apthe event, Østbye proval, but to look as long as you are not ha- over because I had and other student rassing anybody or being leaders consulted asked all of them the womens march. to think about disruptive.” com #Enough! being inclusive,” National School D’Amico said. “Be-James D’Amico, principal cause we held the Walkout Toolkit. This website proevent at school, we vided step-by-step wouldn’t want to instructions on how to plan and coordi- be divisive or start fights.” nate walkouts. The toolkit encouraged D’Amico explained that he did not want students to coordinate with the admin- to censor or limit what the student speakistration to ensure the safety of students. ers had to say. However, to ensure that While working with the administration, the administration did not censor, Theo the goals of the walkout slightly changed. Koskoff ’18 read a different speech at the “We initially intended it to be more about walkout than the one he sent to D’Amico. gun control,” Østbye said. “But, the admin“I think a lot of people say ‘you can’t start istration wanted it to be more about politi- politicizing it while the wounds are still cal speech and involvement, and in the end healing,’” Koskoff said. “But by the time it became a hybrid of them both because we the wounds heal, another school shooting

70 North Ave., Westport, Connecticut, 06880

is going to happen and if we don’t politicize, then the problem will never be solved.” D’Amico did not have any issue with what Koskoff ended up saying. “At the end of the day, Theo’s speech was fine. I think what he ended up saying was certainly passionate about his viewpoint, but I think his message was still inclusive [...] and I will admit that I actually smiled a bit at hearing them,” D’Amico said. “Something I understand and something all of the administrators understand is that students have free speech rights in school [...] as long as you are not harassing anybody or being disruptive.” Some students, however, were put off by the administration’s involvement and chose not to participate. Yanni Tsilfides ’19 did not attend the walkout on March 14 due to its location and the cooperation of the administration. “The way it was organized was kind of a joke. It was supposed to make a difference and show the government that we can make a change,” Tsilfides said. “How the administration orchestrated the event [turned it into] a school thing when it was supposed to be for the students.” Mixed feelings about attendance was present throughout the student popu- | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

March 23, 2018 2 News March 14 walkout to honor Parkland victims, advocate for political activism *Continued from page one lation. While many fully supported the initiative, others did not like the way it was set up and some feared partisanship. Shannon Conte ’21 did not attend the walkout for fear of intense partisan pressures. “I’m not walking out because I don’t want to be somewhere where I am being told that my opinions are wrong,” Conte said. “I want to be there for the minute and 17 seconds of silence because I think that it’s very important, but [...] not anything more.” Evan Shorrock ’19, on the other hand, was enthusiastic about the event. “I’m walking out because it’s so important to raise awareness about these issues and to come together as a community to take a stand and make our voices heard,” Shorrock said. “It was also special to be able to show our support

for those who lost their lives in Parkland.” Eden Schumer ’18 also chose to walk out to support the efforts that the Parkland students inspired and to advocate for gun reform. “Regardless of where you fall politically, it’s an important lesson in political efficacy and using your voice to push for change on issues that you feel are important,” Schumer said. “I don’t have all the answers, but what our government’s doing now is not working to protect lives. Enough is enough, and that’s why I walked out.” The walkout began with an introduction followed by a reading of victims’ names and one minute and 17 seconds of silence led by the presidents of Student Assembly, Jackson Delgado ’18 and Alyssa Hyman ’18. Following Student Assembly, Kaela Dockray ’20 and Audrey Bernstein ’20

NATIONAL SCHOOL WALKOUT Students and faculty of Staples High School participated in a walkout on March 14. This is in response to the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. There will be another national protest on March 24.

Photo by Melanie Lust ’19

spoke about their experience of meeting the activists from Parkland. Co-Presidents of JSA, Ella Lederer ’18 and Emma Greenberg ’18 spoke. They were followed by Maddie Sell ’18, Koskoff and Kylie Adler ’19. Peter Clanton ’18 spoke on behalf of the Young Republicans club and Olivia Payne ’18 spoke from the Young Democrats club. Østbye closed the event with a speech and a couple “minutes of action” in which students tweeted the representatives about their thoughts pertaining to the walkout and beliefs. Østbye enjoyed the time she spent exercising her right to assembly. “Organizing this walkout has been a lot of work but it’s also been extremely rewarding,” Østbye said. “A lot of people think you just get out of class and walk out, but there has been so much more effort than that put into this.”

Haskell launches campaign for state senate Sophie Driscoll ’19 Staples alum Will Haskell ’14 announced his run for Connecticut State Senate on Wednesday, Feb. 28. He will run as a Democrat to challenge Republican incumbent Toni Boucher for the 26th Senate District. If elected to the state senate, Haskell hopes to establish a lockbox to prevent state transportation funds from being spent on other projects, enforce stricter gun control policy and bolster Connecticut’s future workforce. “When you talk to people, you find that they’re not satisfied with their state government,” Haskell said. Though a Democrat, Haskell is willing to embrace bipartisan cooperation. “I’m willing to work across the aisle,” Haskell said. “One of my best friends is a staunch Republican.” Haskell has worked for the Democratic National Committee, with Hillary for America and at the Capitol Hill offices of Congressman Jim Himes and Senator Chris Murphy. “We’re seeing a moment now when young people are making a difference,” Murphy said. “I got involved in politics in high school, and I’m inspired by all of the young people across Connecticut who are stepping up and making a difference in their community.” Haskell is set to graduate from Georgetown University in May and has deferred enrollment in law school to run his campaign. He commutes between Washington, D.C. and Connecticut. “I’m a new face and a new voice,” Haskell said. “The fact that over 100 [high school] students have donated to my campaign shows that our generation is ready to step off the sidelines.”

Additionally, Staples stuHaskell was a student in Schager’s dents have expressed interest in English 2/U.S. History Honors Collabworking for Haskell’s campaign. orative class, an interdisciplinary soph“I want to work for Will because omore English and United States hisI agree with his policy ideas,” Hallie tory course which is no longer offered. Spear ’19 said. “I find him super inspir“He was unlike any student I’ve ever had ing, and I want to run for political of- before,” Schager said. “He just would stop fice when I get older, so it’s amazing to at nothing to find out the real experience of see a graduate from Staples do that.” the people that he was trying to understand.” As a Staples student, Haskell was PresKammerman expressed simiident of Staples Players and a founding lar enthusiasm about Haskell’s cammember of the Student-Teacher Alliance paign. Haskell was a student in her to Stop Bullying. Since his high school A.P. U.S. Government & Politics class. graduation, Haskell has stayed connect“I definitely assumed he had aspirations ed to the Westport community through to get involved politically,” Kammerman his involvement with the Westport Dem- said. “I didn’t know he was going to run ocratic Town Committee (DTC). Last for office, but I think it’s really wonderful.” year, he worked on Melissa Kane’s camHaskell ultimately hopes to paign for Westport’s First Selectman. bring change to Hartford in order “I think Will is so incredibly hardwork- to represent constituents’ interests. ing and thoughtful, and I was really im“I want to be a forward-thinking legpressed with him when he worked on my islator,” Haskell said. “I care about the campaign,” Kane said. “He’s got the guts to ways in which government helps people.” Photo by Ellie Kravetz ’18 go out there and run against an incumbent. I’m impressed with his tenacity.” H a s kell also stayed in touch with many of his former teachers, including social studHASKELL FOR STATE SENATE ies teachers Twenty-one year old Will Haskell Cathy Scha’14, a former Staples student, is running for the Democratic party ger and Suin the race for the 26th Senate zanne KamDistrict. merman. | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL


Malloy’s new tax plan aims to help Connecticut residents Layla Wofsy ’19


n an effort to help Connecticut residents make up for 10 billion dollars lost to federal tax deductions under the new tax law, Governor Dannel Malloy proposed a new state tax plan on Feb 5. The plan includes provisions that protect Connecticut residents from the federal tax law put in place by President Trump and Republicans in Congress. “[Trump’s] plan certainly hurts Connecticut residents, as well as other blue states because of the elimination of state and municipal tax deductions,” Ryan Felner ’19, an AP Economics student, said. Malloy’s plan aids middle class taxpayers by allowing them to classify their property tax payments as charitable donations. This is put in opposition to the federal tax reform law put in place last year put a $10,000 cap on state and local tax deductions with no cap on the deduction for charitable donations. According to the Hartford Courant, taxpayers would receive their local tax bill and be able to make a donation to their city or a charity in the town to receive an equal tax credit back rather than paying it in tax money. The charities would use these donations to pay for town or city services that are usually funded by tax dollars. This change would result in less money going to the federal government. Staples students believe that tax plan would be a significant help to many Connecticut residents. “This would increase the quality of local services while simultaneously reducing the tax burden for middle class Connecticut residents and businesses,” AP Economics student Chloe Palumbo ’19 said. Tax experts, though, say that it is unlikely that the IRS will accept the Governor’s proposal. “The IRS has a substance-over-form doctrine,” Jared Walczak, a senior policy analyst at the nonpartisan Tax Foundation, said to the Hartford Courant. “The IRS cares about what something functionally is, not what you call it, not how you frame it. Simply calling this a charitable contribution when in fact it’s just a recharacterization of tax payments is not going to fool the IRS.” Malloy is also proposing the implementation of electronic tolls along state highways throughout Connecticut and wants to raise the gasoline tax by seven cents per gallon over four years. AP Economics teacher Jonathan Shepro understands that Connecticut is dealing with economic issues however he thinks that raising the gas tax and adding tolls to the highways could have a negative outcome. “[These additions] would hit the people who can least afford it the hardest,” Shepro said. Additionally, Malloy’s plan eliminates a middle-class income tax, hotel and real estate taxes, closes a sales tax exemption for over-the-counter medications and increases teacher pension costs. The plan will further increase the cigarette tax from $4.35 to $4.60 per pack, making it the highest state tax in the country. Malloy also suggests raising the tax on cigars from from 50 cents to $1.50 while also calling for an elimination of minimum bottle pricing on alcoholic beverages and allowing the sale of wine in grocery stores. West Hartford’s democratic Representative Andrew Fleischmann voted in favor of raising the state’s cigarette tax at the legislative committee meeting on March 2.

March 23, 2018



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Photo contibuted by Superintendent Dr. Colleen Palmer

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Photo contributed by

Brett Franklin ’18

March 24, 2018

March 23-25, 2018 Middle School Productions

March For Our Lives

The Bedford Middle School Acting Group presents its annual sixth grade production of “Alice in Wonderland,” a fantasy play about the White Rabbit and Alice’s journey in a magical world. The first show begins at 7:30 p.m. on March 23. Additionally, the Coleytown Middle School Company will present “James and the Giant Peach,” a musical about the adventures of a young boy who befriends the Old Grasshopper and the remaining insects on a giant and magical peach. The first show also begins at 7:30 p.m. on March 23.

On March 24, 2018, protesters all across the country will take to the streets to demand that their lives and safety become a priority. They also want to focus on ending gun violence and mass shootings in schools. The main March for Our Lives protest is in Washington, DC; however, it will be taking place in over 826 towns across the country.


March 25, 2018


March 30, 2018

National Charity League’s Annual Tea

On March 25, 2018, the National Charity League (NCL) in the Fairfield County area will be holding their annual “tea”. This celebration has a different theme every year and this year the theme will be “strong women.” This year’s tea is much different than all years in the past as usually the theme is based on fashion. The event will take place at the Patterson Club in Fairfield, Connecticut at 2 p.m.


No School on Good Friday

Westport Public Schools will be closed on Friday, March 30 for all students and faculty members to celebrate Good Friday. Good Friday is a day to celebrate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Good Friday is always celebrated the Friday before Easter Sunday. This year, Easter will take place on Sunday, April 1.


4 News


March 23, 2018

Puerto Rican tourism industry struggles to recover following post-hurricane decline Melanie Lust ’19

ganizations at Staples have been able to send food and water down to Puerto Rico. Daniel Heaphy, a social studies teacher, estrictions on tourism in Puerto organized penny wars and other fundRico due to persisting damage raisers for hurricane relief in October from Hurricane Maria continue and November. He said the funds went to to pose travel concerns for visitors and Americares, a donation-based emergency Puerto Rican natives. The island’s tourism relief program that focuses on supplying industry has been slowly recovering disaster-struck areas with medical services. since the September storm, but fears of “What I’m hoping is that [Puerto Ricans] dangerous conditions are still warding are making enough progress to rebuild inaway potential visitors. frastructure and we are actually sending The Travel Market Report forecasts [displaced Puerto Ricans] back to com1.7 million visitors to Puerto Rico this munities so they can start living in areas year, compared to an average of 4 mil- that aren’t really damaged,” Heaphy said. lion annual visitors in the past decade. Diaz says in spite of these efforts, Sixteen percent of the island remains the condition of his family has “not imout of power, according to Puerto Rico’s proved” much over the past few months. Authority on Electrical Energy. PowSofia Abrams-Riviera ’20, also from er is expected to fully return by May. Puerto Rico, worries about the available Niko Diaz ’20, who has family living supplies on the island. She was able to visin Puerto Rico, still it in both December fears that damage and over February “My family and I from the hurricane without issue. are still concerned break will prevent him from “My family and about the family visiting his relatives I are still concerned for another few years. we have [in Puerto about the family “I have been worryRico] since resourc- we have [in Puerto ing about trying to be Rico] since resources are still pretty able to visit [my famies are still pretty low low over there.” ly,] because due to the over there,” she said. flooding and the debris Property loss, that’s still out there, -Sofia Abrams- power outages, water there’s been issues with Riviera ’20 shortages and more planes trying to get in continue to hinder and out,” Diaz said. the relief process for “Currently there’s not that much that’s been local residents. However, the steady consupplied to them for reparations or anything struction and renovation of hotels and like that. It’s only been for food and water.” tourist services is prompting financial Slow improvement has been made improvement on a country-wide level. possible by local and national relief ef“Even though all hotels and businessforts, as well as money gained from es suffered, they took advantage and renewly opened hotels and businesses. modeled,” Isabella Katz, a high school Since Hurricane Maria, clubs and or- student from Puerto Rico said. “In the


wake of this storm’s ashes, a new industry was born. All new hotels and businesses.” A water tour company connected to Katz’s family was able to sustain itself despite two full months of zero income. Had it not been for adequate and timely storage of equipment, Katz says, the company would have become bankrupt. Many other similar businesses

have not been able to recover successfully and are now destroyed or bankrupt. “Tourism is vital to Puerto Rico’s full recovery,” Carla Campos Vida, an interim executive director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, said in a New York Times report. “The best way to support the island is by continuing to visit, stay at hotels, eat at restaurants, and buy from local businesses.”

Graphic by Carolyn Gray ’19

DACA’s new status quells fear amongst Dreamers, program’s future remains uncertain Maddie Phelps ’19

The Supreme Court ensured that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) will remain in tact through at least the fall by denying a hearing of the case regarding the program on Feb. 26. Created by President Barack Obama, the program intends to protect undocumented immigrants who come into America as children, otherwise known as Dreamers, from being deported.

Jonathan Steinberg, a state representative serving Westport for his fourth term, added that Dreamers have the right to continue to be protected by DACA. “Virtually all of us are immigrants,” Steinberg said. “For us to have this xenophobia at this point in the game[...] reflects the anxiety by many in America that see their own American dream not happening.” Ever since President Donald Trump announced he wanted to dismantle DACA last Photo contributed by Antonia Sousa ’19

HOME AWAY FROM HOME Antonia Sousa ’19 (back row, fourth from right recently moved back to Peru after her issues related to DACA and other immigration programs. | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

September, the debate over the program’s been an advocate for DACA to remain inexistence has been heated and constant tact as well. He looks to pass additional legamongst lawmakers. While the Supreme islation to protect Dreamers in a time where Court ruling secures the status of Dream- their future in the United States is unclear. ers for the immediate future, uncertainty “I have met with Dreamers in Connectiremains concerning how Congress will cut and heard their stories, and I vow to handle the program in the next few months. keep fighting to keep their families togethAs a result, many local lawmakers ar- er,” Murphy said. “I will work with my colen’t satisfied with DACA potentially be- leagues in Congress to pass the Dream Act, ing terminata piece of legislation ed or changed “Many people claim that creates a pathdrastically. Jim way to citizenship they are ‘just going Marpe, Westport’s while allowing them back home,’ forget- to live here legally.” First Selectman, ting that to them, this said that risking While Sophie Dreamers’ “opMcCabe ’19 becountry is home.” portunity for a lieves DACA is an bright future” in important program -Antonia Sousa ’19 because it gives imthe United States is “heartbreaking.” migrants an opporJust like many tunity to achieve local officials, Antonia Sousa ’19 believes the American Dream, she expressed that DACA should be continued and should not changes should be made. “I believe that be subject to a change that would threaten since it is such an influential program, it the future of Dreamers. Sousa, an immi- should be a law, not just an executive orgrant from Lima, Peru, moved to the U.S. der,” McCabe said. For this reason, she when she was 11 years old, but wouldn’t be added, ending DACA would be the right threatened directly by DACA’s termination. decisions. However, she added that “ConSousa moved back to her home coun- gress should take this opportunity to try in early February of this year, and make it a law so that it can be secured as her experience as an immigrant push- an opportunity for generations to come.” es her to believe that DACA’s exisWhile they are protected under DACA tence has a significant impact on the for now, the lives and futures of hundreds of lives of all immigrants in America. thousands of Dreamers, including approx“People–not only Trump, but also Amer- imately 8,000 young people in Connectiican citizens–should realize that tightening cut, await in the hands of the government. immigration laws don’t only affect undoc“By removing DACA, these immiumented ‘border crossers’, but also doc- grants are stripped away from all they umented immigrants such as me and my know and are forced to return to their family,” Sousa said. “Hopefully immigra- countries of origin and start over with littion laws begin to change in the next couple tle to no knowledge of what lies ahead of of years [...] so deserving immigrants stop them,” Sousa added. “Many people claim being forced to change their lives around.” they are ‘just going back home,’ forgetConnecticut Senator Chris Murphy has ting that to them, this country is home.”

5 ‘Dream Event’ honors and enriches ABC program Inklings


March 23, 2018

Ben Pearl ’18

vidual or $500 which included an advertisement and acknowledgement in the brochure. There were also sponsorship or a select group of boys at Staples, levels available, ranging from $1,750 to September signals more than just $5,000, which allowed for entry into a spethe end of summer and the start of cial reception before the general ceremony. This year’s honorees included soon-toschool. This group leaves their friends and families in California, Pennsylvania be high school graduate Jarod Ferguson ’18, and Massachusetts among others and as well as college graduates Ruben Guardaflies, trains or busses out to Westport, do ’14 (University of Southern California) Connecticut. They do it for a safer and Khaliq Sanda ’14 (Duke University). atmosphere, a desirable education and a All three gave speeches during the evening. Since its founding, ABC has graduated 22 better chance... to succeed. Since 2002, A Better Chance of Westport students through Staples and many of these (ABC) has brought young, male scholars to alumni return for this event each year. Photo contributed by Pamela Einarsen “It’s great Staples High to come back School and to Westport the Westport and be reccommunity. ognized for For the last my achieve15 years, the m e n t s ,” organization Guardado has hosted said. “But an annueven better, al “Dream to show the Event,” aimed current ABC at honoring scholars my g r a d u at i n g achieveseniors and ments and be raising aware- A BETTER CHANCE (Left to right) David Li ’19, Jose Nunez ness for the ’21, Nasir Wynruit ’21, Jarod Ferguson ’18, Darby Aurelien ’19, a role model DeLeon ’20 and Yoel Hooper-Antunez ’20 are the seven for them.” program. This Diego ABC scholars from all across the United States. For Feryear’s gala guson, like took place on Saturday, March 17 at the Rolling Hills many others, the adaptation to WestCountry Club in Wilton, Connecticut. port was not easy. While his family was The night commenced with a cocktail supporting him from Philadelphia, he hour and silent auction. While dinner was was carried along the journey by his served, speeches were made honoring this friends from ABC. Some of his supportyear’s graduates by various ABC supporters. ers he has never even met, as they work “My favorite part of the evening, by behind the scenes ensuring that he is far, is listening to the seniors’ speech- comfortable and successful every day. “When I was an underclassman it was es and hearing about how much the ABC program and the Westport com- inspiring. It gave me a goal to reach by my munity have meant to them,” Michelle senior year,” Ferguson said. “It’s an honMitnick, Vice President of fundraising or to make it this far and with my speech and overseer of the Dream Event, said. I hope that I can show gratitude towards Tickets were priced at $200 per indi- those who’ve helped me on this journey.”

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo ’18


FINAL SPEECH At the ABC Dream event, Jarod Ferguson ’18 gives his senior year speech, a

tradition every year for those graduating. Ferguson’s case was unique as he was the only senior this year.

Cape Town water shortage leads to ‘Day Zero’ Hannah Bolandian ’19 South Africa, primarily the major city of Cape Town with a population of about 3.78 million people, has been experiencing a three year drought that has brought reservoir water levels threateningly low. City officials of Cape Town have strictly limited water usage for inhabitants and plan to shut off running water taps as the problem continues to heighten. According to CNN, on Feb. 20 Cape Town classified July 9, 2018 as “Day Zero.” This means that at the rate the water shortage is increasing, the city will run out of water and be forced to shut off running taps in nearly all homes and businesses by this date. If this were to occur, it would be the first time in history for a major world city. Citizens have started to take action in preserving their water. “My uncle, aunt, cousin and grandparents live in Cape Town and the water shortage has affected them all,” Ben Van Der Merwe ’18 said. “They have to shower while standing in a bucket then reuse that water for washing the dishes. My grandparents even cover their plates in plastic wrap so they do not need to wash them.” In addition to self-driven preservation, city officials have put limitations in place for the citizens. According to CBS, each person is restricted to 13 gallons a day. In America, the average person uses over 100 gallons a day. In addition, fountains are now illegal and aquatic sports such as swimming and waterpolo have been

taken out of school’s athletic programs. The appearance of Cape Town has changed a lot over the past three years. “We are seeing many changes in our physical environment: brown lawns, more hard landscaping [such as] stones [and] paving, more indigenous plants and shrubs [are] being used, astroturf as opposed

tillation plants to aid in reaching appropriate amounts of water for the city. However, according to Stover, this would have been much more effective if they were set up years before because it will now take time for them to have a large impact. The water crisis has altered the citizens’ day to day lives from taking 90 second showers to reusing dirty water. “It’s everywhere and you can’t get away from it,” Strover said. However, according to the New York Times, there seems to be some hope thanks to the efforts taken by the citizens to conserve water. Day Zero has been Graphic by Poppy Livingstone ’21 pushed back a few times in the past. It to grass,” Sam Strover, Cape Town resident and Van Der Merwe’s aunt, said. was originally set for April 12, and the goal Surrounding areas have been pitch- for the citizens is that it is never reached. Grace Miller ’19 visited Cape Town ing in to help resolve the problem. Water from the Palmiet River, about 20 miles as the drought was beginning. “Cape from Cape Town, was released into the city Town was beautiful,” she said, “and and supplied them with a months worth of it’s so sad to see what has happened water. The UN is also setting up water dis- to it because of the water shortage.” | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

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March 23, 2018




March 23, 2018


Editors-in-Chief Amelia Brown & Anay Simunovic

Managing Editors

Max Appell & Ian Bernstein

Web Managing Editors Megan Doyle & Tori Lubin

Business Director Brett Franklin

Creative Director Melanie Lust

Breaking News Managing Editors

Emma Greenberg & Julia Rosier

Associate Managing Editors Izzy Blansfield & Alex Reiner

Assistant Public Relations Manager Cate Casparius

Assistant Creative Directors Charlie Colasurdo & Ellie Kravetz

Broadcast Directors Jack Caldwell & Jonathan Kaner

Outreach Managers

Hannah Bolandian & Bri Zeiberg

Assistant Business Manager Zach Feinstein

Subscription Managers Clay Crouch & Ben Klau

Advertising Managers Caroline Donahue & Emily Stone

News Editors

Jack Beck & Zach Horowitz Sophie Driscoll & Dan Harizman

Opinions Editors

Izzy Connors & Alexandra Sprouls Kaya Leitner & Layla Wofsy

Features Editors Bailey Blaikie & Lili Romann Audrey Bernstein & Liv Ronca

Arts Editors

Allie D’Angelo & Olivia Foster Nicky Brown & Anna Rhoads

Sports Editors

Kaela Dockray & Erin Lynch Jackson Daignault & Amanda Kaplowitz

Web News Editors

Nicole Dienst & Adam Wenkoff

Web Opinions Editors Arin Garland & Siri Kanter

Web Features Editors

Chelsea Fox & Sasha Narang

Web Arts Editors Molly Mahoney & Maddie Phelps

Web Sports Editors Elliot Kaufman & Ben Pearl


Matthew Bohn, Joseph DelGobbo, & Mary Elizabeth Fulco Gold Medal for Columbia Scholastic Crown Finalist for Columbia Scholastic

Graphic by Melanie Lust ’19

Heightened civic engagement reveals power of youth


espite decades of efforts by some politicians to pass gun control legislation, most have failed. Meanwhile, Parkland students got the nation talking, and in less than a month, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act passed into law.


EDITORIAL Besides forcing legislators to raise the age to buy a gun in Florida from 18 to 21 and organizing an international walk-out, the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas demonstrated that not only do teens have a voice, but it’s a pretty convincing one. There’s something about a 17-year old student challenging Marco Rubio at a CNN town hall to stop accepting do-

nations from the NRA that is uncomfortable. It’s surprising. It’s necessary. As part of this “youth movement,” we are powerful, not despite our age, but because of it. We are not worried about keeping a job to provide food for ourselves and our family — Unlike career politicians, we do not need to bend our beliefs to get re-elected or compromise our ideals to get the majority vote. We know what we want and we plan to get it. There have always been critical points in history when adults seem to have lost perspective, and younger generations have demanded they get it back. The children’s strikes against sweatshops in the 1930s led to better wages and working conditions. The Birmingham Children’s Crusade of 1963 was a key turning point in the Civil Rights movement. The National Moratorium Day march in 1969 against the Vietnam War included hundreds of thousands of students and contributed to demonstrations that defined a generation. Today, the Parkland students are just one part of the bigger movement. Our genera-

tion is going further than just demanding politicians take action; they are becoming the policy makers themselves. In Kansas, a state without a minimum age for governor, six kids, as young as 16, are running for governor. Hitting even closer to home, Staples graduate Will Haskell ’14 is campaigning for Connecticut State Senate at just 21. Even if you don’t want to run for governor or a seat on the senate, and even if you can’t vote, civic engagement among adolescents is and always has been critical to youth movements. You can organize or participate in protests, write letters, make calls to your representatives or even just read the newspaper to stay informed. No matter which way you choose, we must continue the cause. We must declare, demand and bring about change. The future is ours to shape, and we cannot afford to fail.

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Hybrid News from Press Association 2017 from Press Association 2015

Silver Crown Award for Newspaper from Columbia Scholastic Press Association 2014 Pacemaker from National Scholastic Press Association 2013 All the opinions, news and features in this paper are those of Staples High School students. Inklings, a curricular and extracurricular publication, has a circulation of 1,800 and is uncensored. All letters to the editor must be signed. The editorial board reserves the right not to publish letters and to edit all submissions as it sees fit. The editorial board determines all editorial opinions, which are authored faithfully by the Editors-in-Chief. Inklings reserves the right to not publish advertisements that promote products that could be harmful to student health. The paper is a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and the National Scholastic Press Association and supports the Student Press Law Center. 70 North Ave. Westport, CT 06880 Phone: (203) 341-1994 Decisions of Inklings and Westport Public Schools are made without regard to race, color, age, sex, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, marital status, disability or any other discriminating basis prohibited by local, state or federal law.

Carter Teplica ’19 “Politics is much more in the forefront of everyone’s consciousness than it was before the 2016 presidential election.”

Emma Strauss ’20 “I think it’s because of all the mass shootings. That’s when students got involved because they were the ones experiencing it all firsthand so they wanted to do something to take action.”

Zach Zobel ’20 “Political movements are becoming more of a day to day thing in the news and life in general and that’s seeping down to younger people.”

Photos by Charlie Colasurdo ’18


8 Opinions


March 23, 2018

Administration’s help appreciated, but devalues gun violence protests Adam Wenkoff ’18


hen it was announced that the administration would be cooperating with students with their efforts to join the rest of the country and protest gun violence at 10:00 a.m. on March 14, I was pleasantly surprised. I felt grateful to have such reasonable leaders at our school who would help us when we wanted to achieve something noteworthy. However, after contemplating on the issue more, and after attending the “protest” in the field house, I realized that by helping us with the walkout, the administration actually took away some of its value. One of the most important parts of a protest is the risk that the protesters are taking. For example, every single teacher in West Virginia put their job on the line when they all decided to protest last month. If the strike turned out to be a bust, the harsh reality is that a lot of people would be unemployed right now. But that’s what made their protest so powerful. They knew the repercussions, but they decided that their cause was more important than their jobs and put their money where their mouth was. The same can be said for the entire Civil Rights movement. A main rallying point among African Americans was seeing leaders in their community

put their lives on the line by choosing to fight back against the majority, which included the police and much of America’s judicial system. One of the most moving and catalyzing parts of the Civil Rights movement was Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” This letter would not have existed if the law enforcement in Alabama had cooperated with King’s movement and organized an event for it. I do appreciate the administration’s effort to work with us on our protests. I absolutely think that their intentions were in the right place. But every single student that is choosing to participate in a walk out is technically skipping class, with some even leaving campus. That’s the truth. And there should be the same consequences for skipping class for a walkout as there are for skipping class any other day. The protest on March 14 felt more like an assembly than a protest. And honestly, it felt like we were a little bit separated from the rest of the country that actually put something on the line when they protested. And I was really disappointed by that.


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Letter to the Editor Submit a letter to Inklings at I for one will not shop in a store that sells guns — any kind of gun. I stopped shopping in Wal-Mart years ago and also Dick’s Sporting Goods. I was shopping in Wal-Mart when I passed a counter with guns — in a super market??? I was so distressed that I left my wagon full of groceries and walked out. The thought of kids looking at what cereals to pick out and being confronted with real guns devastated me. I was shopping for sneakers when again I was confronted with guns at Dick’s Sporting Goods. Again, I threw the sneakers down and walked out. The shock of seeing these weapons in local, family stores threw me. Guns should be sold in a gun shop, period. No one should be accosted with guns while shopping for anything else. I also stopped shopping at a local hardware store because in their arsenal were guns. They have their right (unfortunately) to sell whatever they like, but I have my right to shop in another hardware store. I know the NRA will never, ever agree with me even if we are all obliterated with gun fire, but I am hoping the rest of the population will. These stores will listen if we all agree to boycott any store that includes guns in their inventory. They will stop selling them if their bottom line is affected. Sincerely, Anne Fogel Westport Resident

Tax cuts justify national economic improvements Dana Perelberg ’20

This past fiscal year, the United States reached tremendous new economic levels. The national unemployment rate is at a 16 year low, hovering around 4.1 percent, and the stock market grew 31 percent in 2017 under President Donald Trump, the largest first year of growth since FDR, according to CNBC. While it would be unreasonable to credit Trump, whose position as president has so little control over the economy, with these accomplishments, he can be credited with the implications of his late 2017 tax plan, which has encouraged cooperation among large corporate firms to support businesses across the country. Warren Buffet, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, announced his plan to join Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, and J.P. Morgan Chase chairman and CEO, Jamie Dimon, in creating a lower-cost alternative to high-cost U.S. healthcare. One of the root causes for Buffett’s jumpstart to this venture was the $29 billion his company reclaimed due to Trump’s tax cuts. In an interview with Inc., Warren Buffett explained the trio’s plan to extend the system, once it is up and running, to other companies. The main aim of the project is to curtail rising healthcare costs and lower the

percentage of GDP that healthcare makes up, which is up 13 percent since the 1960’s. This is a tangible example of trickle down economics.

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by K atie How ard ’1 | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL


Trickle down economics is centered around lowering taxes for businesses in hopes of encouraging short run investment that w i l l subse-

quently benefit the economy in the long run. By slashing the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent in his 2017 tax reform, Trump took the first steps in instituting a modern version of “Reaganomics,” a tax reform introduced by President Ronald Reagan in the 1980’s. It is undeniable that businesses have taken the first steps in attempting to give back to society. Not only have the tax cuts enabled financial masterminds to attempt to combat one of the largest social issues our country faces, but the implications of this tax plan have actually widened the labor market. According to CNN, last year Trump added 138 thousand manufacturing jobs by Dec. 2017, which was more than 104 thousand jobs than the previous year. Historic trends have continued to raise wages of all ethnicities and for the first time in more than a decade, it seems the United States has constructed a stable labor market. I would like to reiterate the fact that this booming economic success cannot all be attributed to the man in the Oval Office. Since the recession in 2008, President Barack Obama has worked tirelessly to rebuild our stagnated economy. Many of the positive trends set in motion by Obama have continued to improve over this period. But with that said, President Trump, with the help of his tax reform from this past fall, has continued this magnificent growth and deserves credit, too.



March 23, 2018


The Artichoke *Inklings Satire


not sorry you’re NOT lucky

Dana Perelberg ’20


t. Patrick’s Day is a day of good luck. I must have been born under a rainbow because I am the luckiest gal I know. But there are many who are less fortunate than I am. So, on this day of leprechauns and four leaf clovers, I believe it is only fair to acknowledge those who are still searching for that lucky pot of gold... Here’s a shoutout to Joe who always manages to miss the bus by just one minute. Maybe next time I’ll ask the bus driver to wait for you instead of just waving and laughing at you through the window. Don’t count on it, though. Your awkward run really makes my day. And how about Sandra who spent the entire night studying for her big exam only to sleep through half of it? It’s okay, Sandy. Grades aren’t everything. Just kidding. Your mom’s gonna kill you when she sees that C-. Next time be sure to eat your Lucky Charms. Maybe then you’ll be the only person in the class with an A+. Oh wait — that’s me. May we all send our prayers to Bob who managed to be out sick during

the one week his teachers announced four tests and assigned two essays, six packets and three worksheets, all due that Monday. Thanks for trading seats

Photo by Samantha Taylor ’21

with me in English class, otherwise it would’ve been me who caught the flu from Jimmy. I’m SO happy I didn’t end up getting sick! Sucks for you, though.

And who could forget John who sipped his iced coffee just as his mom hit a speed bump and spilled the entire cup on his white shirt right before school? Don’t worry, no one noticed. Just messing with you. Everyone noticed, probably because I sent a Snapchat of it to the entire school. On the bright side — you’re viral! I have sympathy for all the people who have to endure these hardships everyday. You are truly brave. But the world needs people like you in order to show the rest of us just how good our lives are. Maybe you’ll never be lucky, like me, but — COUGH — sorry, I had a tickle in my throat. What was I saying? Oh yeah. You may not be blessed with my luck but- I just dropped my coffee all over me! OW! It burns!! Ow, ow, owwwwww — COUGH, ACHOO, WHEEZE — What’s going on? Am I sick? No. I can’t be sick! I ate my Lucky Charms and I have two big tests today. I’ve gotta get to the bus. Hey! Wait! Joe! Tell the bus Graphic by Poppy Livingstone ’21 driver to stopppppppppp!!!!

‘Irish’ I took more step dancing classes Megan Doyle ’18

sive and complicated as trained dancers. For an extra challenge, during competitions Irish step dancers also have to wear elaborate fancy dresses and wigs. I can’t even imagine the difficulty this would add. It would make the tough dance impossible. These costumes commemorate the clothing of the past. The dresses are made to look like the ones peasants would wear and often have Celtic designs on them. (Ireland’s Eye) . But, somehow these dancers make it look easy and beautiful. After attempting, and ultimately looking like a flailing fish, I have gained an immense amount of appreciation for those dancers. Irish step is not a common practice in Staples or Westport (the nearest studio is in Fairfield or Stamford), but I applaud the select students who choose to do it. The dancing and connection to Irish culture is absolutely amazing. As for me, I’m glad I tried this new type of dance. Maybe in the future I’ll actually pay for a class, make the tumultuous trip to Stamford and just hope I’m not placed with a bunch of little kids. In my mind, being bad at something does not constitute a reason to stop doing it, and I had a ton of fun, so why not continue?

Photo by Alexandra Sprouls ’19 Graphic by Poppy Livingstone ’21

step dancer Abby Turner ’18 to gain some insight. I found out there’s four different “types” of dancing, and the styles differ between schools. But, one of the things they have in common is the lack of arm movement. I focused on learning the steps of In honor of St. Patrick’s day, I signed up for this article fully expecting to knock out an Jig, which is in three time, but there are Irish step dancing class with ease. I had many many different types including reels, things going for me: 12 years of ballet danc- hornpipes, sets, polkas and step dances. These dances were developed over ing experience, about centuries with influences five weeks of Irish step I never knew from the Druids, Christidancing classes seven how important anity and Anglo-Normans. years ago, the watchThe dancers make it ing and re-watching arms were to look so easy — their arms of “Riverdance” from stoically and strongly my balance the ages of four to six glued to their sides — but and an Irish heritage until I was the entire time I danced I so strong I basically have Guinness runchallenged to was thinking, “How the heck do they do this?!” I ning through my veins. dance without never knew how importUnfortunately, all ant arms were to my balof these advantages them. ance until I was challenged seemed to fail me. I to dance without them. was unable to particiUnderneath strictly straight arms, pate in a class, but did practice alone, which in hindsight probably worked out better the “step” aspect comes into play. The because I would’ve embarrassed myself in dancers feet move fast, with small steps, front of a bunch of elementary school kids. jumps and kicks. I learned some basic To prepare, I talked to former Irish moves but it was nowhere near as impres-


10 Opinions


March 23, 2018

Photo by Ellie Kravetz ’18 Graphic by Katie Howard ’19

Why I come to school despite mass shootings Audrey Bernstein ’20


n the aftermath of the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, I was sure of only one thing: I would never leave my home again. On the night of Feb. 14, I stared into the mirror with glossed eyes as I recited a well-rehearsed speech for why I should be homeschooled, hoping it would be compelling enough. I planned to deliver the message to my parents the following day. But I never did. Somehow, I got in the car and went to school the next morning, but Florida’s events still occupied my thoughts. I flinched every time someone shut a door and spun at each voice in the hallway. I

For decades, the United States resistcontemplated where I could hide in each classroom in the event of a lockdown. ed confrontation with mass violence, but On Feb. 27, a s h e l t e r - i n - teenagers are breaking down this barrier. They are advoplace procedure cating for bans was conducted So I will go to school on assault weapat Staples due to ons and stricttomorrow, and I will a threat of viobackground lence, and my fear go to school the week er checks. They of mass shootings hit closer to home after, with the fortitude articulated their beliefs fearlessthan ever before. exhibited by the ly for President My favorite Trump at his place, my school, Parkland students. listening seshad become a sion. During place of dread. CNN’s town But day afthey questioned senators ter day, I continue to walk through hall, its doors because I am inspired by about how to halt the violence. Although 18 school shootings have the overwhelming and passionate activism from the Parkland students. occurred in 2018, these students remain

steadfast and insist that violence cannot become our country’s norm. They acknowledge the horror inflicted upon them, but choose courage over fear each day. When asked by the Miami Herald whether she would return to Marjory Stoneman Douglas, shooting survivor, Emma Gonzalez, responded, “Oh yes. Absolutely. If we didn’t go to school, then those 17 people who died who also can’t go to school, what was this for?” As the count of the victims of mass shootings has accumulated throughout this year, I have been forced to acknowledge that my biggest fear may be entirely rational; however, I now understand that I cannot shelter myself from it if I seek change. So I will go to school tomorrow, and I will go to school the week after, with the fortitude exhibited by the Parkland students. They have redefined bravery as not the ab-

National walkout proves divisive despite aim to unify Reece Keusch ’19 There is nothing that can divide people in the US like politics can. Don’t get me wrong, I love debating about my political beliefs, especially when it opens someone’s mind to a new viewpoint or even changes an opinion of my own. Freedom of expression and civilized discussion are the cornerstones of a free society, and the national high school walkout was a great example of that, as are people like me who chose not to partake. The initial reason I didn’t attend the national walkout was the divisive politicization of it. While our school handled the political aspect fairly well, the movement across the nation should have been focused on unity among everyone, and not bashing people who disagree. The other issue is that there isn’t even unity within the movement in terms of what specific “change” is being called for. There are many things we can do to make our country safer in terms of gun violence and school safety, but my views are different from someone who wants to ban “assault” weapons, and those views are different from someone who wants no guns at all. Overall, movements of this nature that use guilt to justify a cause are not productive in finding a practical and effective solution. Saying “protect kids, not guns” presents an argument that suggests the two are mutually exclusive, which they’re not. You can protects kids and protect people’s rights to own guns. After Parkland, I did a lot of personal research before I started pointing fingers. Then, two weeks later, I was told to stay in my classroom, or “shelter in place,” due to a shooting threat made against my school. In the spur of the moment I wondered if my hometown had fallen victim to the same tragedy as Parkland. Ever since, I have

explored various viewpoints in order to formulate my opinion, which is now drastically different than it was a month ago. I understand that gun control is currently an emotional topic. However, to solve the problem we want fixed, we can’t disregard facts and statistics in spite of emotion, but rather use fact to support our calls for change. | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

The issue is that many people have been misled by the media and politicians regarding terminology and firearm knowledge. An example is that AR-15’s are automatic weapons used by the military and in most mass shootings. This is false. In fact, all types of rifles have been used in only 24 percent of mass shoot-

Photo by Ellie Kravetz ’18 Graphic by Poppy Livingstone ’21

ings, according to Statista. Even knives, blunt objects and bare hands and feet individually kill more people than rifles each year as reported by FBI crime statistics. Some statistics even show that guns could be the solution to horrific mass shootings. CPRC reported that since 2009, 92 percent of mass shootings happened in gun-free zones. While correlation isn’t exactly causation, clearly a presence of guns among civilians isn’t getting more people injured in mass shootings, and there is evidence showing the guns to save lives. Per the CDC, there are an estimated 500,000 instances of people using firearms defensively each year, while only about 11,000 are murdered by guns according to the FBI. And a huge amount of these murders are in cities such as Baltimore, Chicago and Los Angeles, which have some of the strongest gun laws in the country. Clearly these restrictions on weapons are not stopping criminals. I’m not saying that those numbers are okay or that we can’t improve them, but perhaps it shows that guns aren’t the biggest issue here. I see the logic behind instituting stricter checks on mental health or even implementing some sort of firearm training requirement. Essentially, there are ways that we could potentially save lives without infringing on people’s Second Amendment rights. It would have been truly inspiring if the walkout had been solely about honoring the Parkland students’ lives or even about protecting the schools and children in our country, but the nationwide movement was a call for the historically divisive topic of enacting gun control that ultimately fell short of its proclaimed goal of helping keeping places of education safe. It instead directed culpability towards people with a differing stance, creating even more of a political impasse than we had before.


March 23, 2018



“We may be young, but our age does not dismiss the power we have to create change.

Photo by Ellie Kravetz ’18 Graphic by Melanie Lust ’19

- Sasha Barnett ’22




March 2

I am so proud of the students who came today [...] their speeches were so powerfully impactful and resonated. - Colleen Palmer, Superintendent

I was walking for Scott Beigel, and all of the kids who did not get to walk out of school that day. - Amanda Braverman ’20

STUDENTS RAIS Eight reflections on student activ WHEN


You’re old You’re searching for the next step enough to get An eighth grade activist on longing for change. involved “Merely shrugging at politics rather than taking


It’s not the time and place A junior comments on the appropriateness.

action is wrong. Believing we’re too young to take part in this shouldn’t stop you.We can’t stand by and An eighth-grade activist wait for change to happen. We are the future.” “I agree with the fact that on being - Emily Desser ’22 we need to acknowledge the underestimated. deaths (in Parkland) but I don’t necessarily agree with “We are capable of unWHEN “It also wasn’t a real the fact that we’re doing derstanding the governmessage of the students this to stop gun violence. I ment and how things The because it was organized don’t think that should be work as much as adults by the school. Connecticut happening within the school because we are exposed adults members of Congress, are walls.” to things that most chilbecome already staunching the - Luke Welch ’19 dren shouldn’t be extycoon. I don’t think any posed to. We can underinvolved Congressman in stand concepts and come another part of the up with our own ideas, country cares about what’s other than what adults A sophomore on going on here. They have might tell us.” student their own beliefs.” - Nina Driscoll ’22 independence. Inklings News: - Max Bernegger ’20 “Students Demonstrate Activism in National Walk Out.” | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

23, 2018


I believe that you shouldn’t be slaughtered in your own school. It’s wild. Schools are supposed to be safe places where we learn. - Sarah Berkowsky ’19

I thought the walk out was kind of a joke. A lot of people didn’t really care about the actual meaning of it. - Anonymous


Photo by Charlie Colasurdo ’18 Graphic by Melanie Lust ’18

SE THEIR VOICES vism during nationwide walkout WHEN

You’re working with administration Twin sisters on appreciating help from administration.



You believe in the cause

An organizer on how to make a change.

“The time is now for students to make their voices heard. What they want Peri Kessler ’18: “I mean I think and demand, what they we’re not really protesting the administration we’re protesting our demand from their government.” - Monique Østbye ’18 government so I think working with the administration is not WHEN diminishing our protest because they’re not the ones we’re protesting against.” Brooke Kessler ’18: “We’re just exercising our first amendment rights to organize and it’s great that the administration is working with us because they have to honor that. And they care about our safety and if it means our safety I think it’s good that we’re working with them.”

Your parents get involved

You don’t believe in the cause A senior on his objections to the movement.

“I don’t really think the way that they’re portraying gun control is the right way to portray it. A lot of the people here really want to take guns away, [but] I just think they should be harder to get.” -Jamie Lamb ’18

A mother on wanting protection for her child.

“[I stood on North Avenue] to support students and the school walkout day in general, especially since my son is starting his journey through the education system.” - Nicole Klien, first grade parent

Inklings News: “#NeverAgain: National School Walkout, A Photostory.”


14 Features


March 23, 2018

Orphenians journey to perform Down Under Amanda Kaplowitz ’19


hat do the Staples High School Orphenians have in common with Nelson Mandela, Oprah Winfrey and Pope John Paul II? The Sydney Opera House in Australia. After their planned July trip, the Orphenians will join a long list of famous names who have performed at the Sydney Opera House. The Orphenians are a select group of student singers that have performed in many locations. They traveled to San Francisco in December of 2013 AUSTRALIA BOUND Members of the Staples Orphenian group for the National Youth Choral Festiare traveling to Australia in July to perform at the Sydney Opera val and also sang the National Anthem House. They have been invited to study under Grammy-award in Yankee Stadium on June 23, 2015. winning conductor, Craig Hella Johnson, which will culminate in “The organization that put togetha performance at the Sydney Opera House. er the festival and arranged for GramPhoto contributed by Summer Hutchison ’19 my nominated conductor, Craig Hella Johnson, contacted me in the winter of cabaret, which was held on Feb. 5, fea- and talented young people [...] will really 2016 asking if the Orphenians would be tured stars like Adam Kaplan, a Sta- expand our understanding of music beinterested,” choir teacher and director ples alumni and Broadway performer. yond what we’re able to do in rehearsals.” of the Orphenians Luke Rosenberg said. Raising money brings the Orphenians The group has already begun to After getting this invitation, Rosenberg closer to taking this long journey. “A high prepare and practice the 11 songs looked further into it, got approved by the school choir traveling over 10,000 miles that they will perform on the trip. administo perform at the “The Orphenians and I have been “I think that this will be an tration and Sydney Opera working extensively on our music experience that will bring the House is definitely for Australia, and that alone has alpres ented the idea Orphenians even closer as a a one-in-a-million lowed me to practice more and furto the Oropportunity and, ther refine my instrument,” Bowlin said. family.” pheni ans, by far, a once-inIn addition to performing, the Or- Luke Rosenberg, who were a-lifetime experi- phenians will also be traveling to Northexcited to Director of Orpehnians ence,” Ella Sardar- ern Sydney to further explore Austraperform, ian ’19, a soprano lia. Their whole trip will last 11 days especialOrphenian, said. and will also include excursions to ly alongside conductor Johnson. “And as a first-year Orphenian, I’m forev- sites such as the Great Barrier Reef. “I cannot wait to meet Craig Hella John- er grateful that I have a chance like this.” “I think that this will be an experison,” Allie Bowlin ’18, president of choir Similarly to Sardarian, Sam Man- ence that will bring the Orphenians even and teaching assistant to Rosenberg, said. delbaum ’19 sees this trip as a way for closer as a family,” Rosenberg said. “It “I am a huge fan of [his] work and I have the Orphenians to bond as a group won’t change the expectation of musical heard that [he] is an incredible conductor.” and improve their musical abilities. excellence from the ensemble, but I beThe Orphenians are raising the mon“This experience will, I’m sure, bring lieve the pride of being a part of someey for the trip themselves with a Go- the group closer together,” Mandelbaum thing like this it will have some small efFundme page and cabarets. The first said, “but also working with other choirs fect on the shape of my students future.”

Infographic by Poppy Livingstone ’21

Photo by Amanda Kaplowitz ’19

. The Telegraph


Photo contributed by Summer Hutchison ’19 | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

LOCAL PERFORMANCES The Orphenians have performed for many local organizations, including the Senior Center. The 33 member group spent Dec. 7 performing for the Y’s Men of Westport in dress attire and red bow ties.

. The Telegraph

Staples community assesses value of Women’s History Month Layla Wofsy ’19 Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Cleopatra, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Joan of Arc, Susan B. Anthony, Malala Yousafzai, Amelia Earhart. Women’s History Month was established with the intention of remembering and celebrating these women and others who have fought and continue to fight for women’s rights. However, not everyone believes it is beneficial to designate only one month to the recognition of women’s achievements. As a result, choosing whether or not to observe the month is up for debate. For students like Martin Menz ’19, recognizing Women’s History Month is important. “It draws attention to the achievements that women have made throughout American and global history,” Menz said. “We are celebrating the fact that women have been able to excel as policymakers, authors, scientists, activists, etc. despite being oppressed or disadvantaged for centuries and into today.” However, Staples history teacher, Cathy Schag“We really er, questions whether the wanted to month is emphasize celebration, b e n e f i c i a l . “A l l o love and cating one support for month to women this the suggesyear.” tion that -Olivia Porretta ’18 they should be studied is problematic and tokenistic,” Schager said. “I understand the sentiment behind it, but I think the problem is that people are perpetuating the notion that the group is marginalized.” According to Schager, despite the good intentions, designating a month to women suggests that women only need to be recognized one month out of a year, when they should be celebrated year-round. But Schager puts her own views aside and lets the students in her Women in History class decide whether or not they would like to recognize and celebrate the month. For the past two years, Schager’s Women in History class has chosen to observe March as Women’s History month and organize exhibits and/or demonstrations on International Women’s Day. Last year, the class decided to encourage Staples students to wear red to raise awareness about the wage gap between men and women. They held discussions in their classes, welcomed speakers, and gave out munchkins to students who participated. “Wearing red was for Women’s Day in celebration of all women,” Sarah Sherts ’18, a student from last year’s Women in History class, said. This year’s class also wanted to observe the month, so they made plans to create an interactive exhibit next to the cafeteria that would be posted on March 8, International Women’s Day. They wanted students to write on a poster the name of an important woman in their lives along with an adjective they would use to describe her. However, due to the snow day they were unable to post the exhibit. Olivia Porretta ’18 a student in the Women in History class explained what they wanted to accomplish. “We really wanted to emphasize celebration, love and support for women this year,” she said.



March 23, 2018


HARD AT WORK (left to right) Locals from the community La

Sabana Grande de Boya in the Domincan Republic stopped by the worksite to check the progress of the groups working there. Because there was no running water at the worksite, participants had to fill buckets of groundwater in order to mix cement.

B3 travels to Dominican Republic to help communities in need Nicky Brown ’19

CEMENT MIXING Sarah Sherts ’18, a member of B3 for four years, completes tasks such as mixing cement and wheel barrowing in order to build walls.

During February break, the Builders Beyond Borders (B3), teams went to the Dominican Republic for a weeklong service trip. Each of the four groups went to various parts of the country to construct new buildings. “The trip this year was much more eye opening and influential to the whole group,” Sammy Guthartz ’20 said. “It really made an impact on everybody.” B3 is a non profit organization based in Connecticut and sends students to developing countries to help rebuild and construct new buildings for communities in need. According to the B3 website, “The work is varied and physical, from setting block to digging trenches, but as in all aspects of the program, students will be supplied with all the knowledge and tools they need to succeed.” Groups usually range anywhere from 20 to 30 students and include five adult advisors. Together, they take on the task to “build a better world,” as they live alongside their host community to develop facilities that will change the lives of the locals. The teams bond and form close relationships with each other while working. “My team got very close

very fast,” Allie Avila ’19 said. “We really got to know each other well, especially because we did not have our phones. It was so much fun.” Team advisor and science teacher, Michael Aitkenhead also felt like he was able to build strong connections with the kids. “I certainly get to see a slightly different side to the students versus when we are in the classroom,” Aitkenhead said. “I’m able to learn much more about the students on a personal level, and what I find is that the majority of the students are pretty remarkable people.” The teams build different facilities, ranging from classrooms, to community centers or agricultural centers. During the trip, students are not allowed to bring phones or electronics. “Spending a week without the luxuries in Westport, as well as taking a break from my phone to enjoy what is going on around you, is an awesome feeling,” Lily Kalman ’18 said. B3 students experience new cultures, lifestyles and communities that differ from Westport. The students not only form connections with each other, but also through the local workers and kids living there. “My favorite part of the trip was connecting with the workers and the locals. Although there is a language barrier, we were still able to communicate and learn about each other’s lives,” Grace Roseme ’19 said. “It is very cool to see the differences in other people’s lives.”


team members were working in areas where mosquitoes were present, participants had to get the flu and typhoid shots. Depending on their location in the Dominican Republic, some groups had to take malaria pills.

BUILDING A BETTER WORLD (left to right) Members of B3 work with the locals for one week in order to build an Agricultural Center. Jordan Cutler ’18 has been a member of the team for three years and has been to Ecuador, Nicaragua and Dominican Republic with B3.


16 Advertisements | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL

March 23, 2018



January23, 18,2018 2018 March



Staples Players debuted their spring production, “Merrily We Roll Along,” on March 16. The musical is based on the 1934 play “Merrily We Roll Along” written by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart. The musical features lyrics and music by Stephen Sondheim, who also composed music for plays including “Sweeney Todd” and “Into the Woods,” both productions performed by Staples Players in previous years.

Elle Fair ’19


s the last words of “Our Time” are belted from the ensemble, and as Charlie, Franklin and Mary stand in the front of the stage dressed in their pajamas, the Staples Players are congratulated by the packed audience for yet another historic show. This spring, the Staples Players are presenting “Merrily We Roll Along” for the first time since 2003. David Roth, the head director of Staples Players, who is now in his 18th year, is directing the production. The musical follows the relationship of three best friends: Franklin, played by Nick Rossi ’19; Charlie, played by Charlie Zuckerman ’18; and Mary, played by Avery Mendillo ’18. The friends make up a song-andplay-writing trio. The play starts in 1976 and moves backwards in time as it follows their professional and personal journeys. Amanda Samuels ’19 has been performing in Staples Players since she was a fresh-

man and will be part of the ensemble for “Merrily We Roll Along.” “The thing I’m most excited for in ‘Merrily We Roll Along’ is the variety in costumes,” Samuels said. Since the play contains flashbacks in the main characters’ lives, almost every scene will feature a new set of costumes from different decades. In the beginning of the play, the cast will be seen wearing ’70s fashion, and as the play continues it transitions into a ’60s black and white theme. “For every decade change, their will be a costume change as well,” Juliette Schwebel ’19 said. Schwebel has been a part of Players since freshman year and will be apart of the ensemble as well as helping to create part of the costumes in the show. The Players are confident that the show will live up to the high expectations the Westport community holds for the high school productions. “We can put on shows of Broadway caliber, which is an attitude that will definitely carry over into future shows,” Rossi said. “Merrily We Roll Along” opened on March 16 and 17, but future performances are set for March 23 and 24 at 7:30 and March 18 at 3:00.

Paul ’03 returns to Players’ stage MERRILY ROLLING INTO STAPLES (above) Franklin Shepard, a Hollywood producer, played by Nick Rossi ’19, dances with Meg Kincaid, played by Maggie Foley ’19, a star in one of Shepard’s movies. (below) In the opening scene of “Merrily We Roll Along,” Franklin Shepard is a guest speaker at Wake Forest University’s senior graduation. (top right) Simone Barr ’18, who plays K.T. Lewis, a T.V. journalist, and Franklin Shepard, embrace; the pair became friends after Lewis interviewed Shepard for an NBC show. Contributed photo by Staples Players

PLAYERS WELCOMES PAUL On March 9, Oscar, Golden Globe, Tony winner, and former member

Photos by Ellie Kravetz ’18 Graphic by Melanie Lust ’19

of Staples Players Justin Paul visited the actors of “Merrily We Roll Along” to talk about his career in show business. Paul starred as Franklin Shepard in the 2003 production of “Merrily We Roll Along” at Staples. After earning a BFA in musical theater from the University of Michigan, Paul is now co-composing musicals along with his composing partner, Benj Pasek. Pasek and Paul were the dynamic creators behind multiple Broadway and Hollywood musicals, including “La La Land” starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, and “The Greatest Showman” starring Hugh Jackman.


Inklings March 23, 2018 18 Arts Student actors honor Keller in ‘The Miracle Worker’ Amelia Brown ’18


acting circumstances. Cassie Lang ’20 took on the role of Sullivan, a 20-yearold visually impaired, second generation-Irish American entrusted with teaching Keller through Keller’s tantrums. “Practice of our routines, such as the combative breakfast scene,” Lang said, “was a major aspect of our preparation for the show. Alongside my castmates, I also learned the ASL alphabet to be able to spell into Helen’s hand onstage.” In addition to the tough acting re-

elen Keller was an avid advocate for women’s suffrage, labor rights and people with disabilities. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1964 and was later inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. But before she became the nationally acclaimed author, activist and role model known today, Keller was a little girl, trapped by her deafness and blindness in an unknown world. “The Miracle Worker,” put on as a Staples Players’ student production at Toquet Hall from March 2-4, told the story of Keller before she could communicate and the struggle her family and teacher, Annie Sullivan, went through to help her. This unique story of Keller and Sullivan led to an equally unique experience putting on the show. “We got noise canceling headphones and blindfolds, and [the director] set up an obstacle course for me while I was blindfolded,” Samantha Webster ’21, who played the lead role of Keller, said on how she grew accustomed to playing a deaf-blind child. “Once I got that feeling in my body, it was so much easier to do it in character.” Webster’s was not the only charGraphic by Carolyn Gray ’19 acter with difficult

quired in the play, the technical aspects proved an exciting challenge for director Sydney Carson ’18 and stage manager Karalyn Hood ’20. “This was also the first time that myself and Sydney had complete charge of our own

show, and since it was completely student run, we had to get used to navigating on our own,” Hood said. Carson added that, “In the end though, I just used my best judgment and went with it and I couldn’t be happier with the result.” Webster believed all the hours and hard work helped the cast bond and aided the show’s success. “I did enjoy that the majority of the cast was made up of people I had been friends with for a while,” Webster said. “This made the more physical and personal parts of the show less difficult. Once I became close friends with all of the other amazing people I had a lot more fun, and we all became a lot more comfortable with each other.” Not only did members of the cast connect with other actors, but they also bonded with their characters, drawing inspiration from the real life figures they were portraying. “I did some reading about Annie to prepare for the play, and what struck me the most about her was her stubborn persistence,” Lang mentioned. “She was not about to give up on Helen, to whom she devoted her entire life to teaching after meeting.” The purpose of the Toquet Hall show was not only to create a final product that connects with the audience, but also to serve as a learning opportunity for both the mostly underclassmen cast and student-run crew. “With the countless number of shows I’ve performed in, the most memorable ones were the ones where every single person in it was passionate about it,” Carson said. “I wanted the kids to be excited no matter the size of their part and really just give it their all, and I’m so proud because I think they really did that.”

190 Main offers exceptional seafood tapas on Main Street quickly and looked absolutely stunning. The plating of the crispy rice was clean and fresh looking with vibrant green garnishes. The plating of the shrimp dish was colorful from the orange sauce painted over and underneath the shrimp. 190 Main occupies a spot on the far left The successful looks of the plates helped end of Downtown Westport. The location, satisfy the taste of the menu options. The ginger flavor in the shrimp was 190 Main Street, was previously occupied by Vine Wine Room. The new restaurant offers pungent yet paired perfectly with the orlunch at 3:00 p.m. Thursday through Sun- ange, intensifying the freshness of the day, brunch at 11:00 a.m. on Saturdays and shrimp. The crispy rice had the perfect Sundays and dinner everyday at 5:30 p.m. crunch to it, creating great texture to pair As a seafood-oriented restaurant, it’s with the soft sashimi. Although the poronly appropriate for the setting to create tions weren’t too hefty, the plates were a bit of an ocean vibe for its visitors while plentiful enough to make me feel more they enjoy the dishes offered on the menu. than satisfied by the end of my meal. When it came time to pay for the dishes 190 Main definitely conveys a boat-like feel to its atmosphere with its white inte- I ordered, I wasn’t shocked when I saw a total of $26. While rior, hanging it was a decent buoys and tiedThis new restaurant amount to spend up dock hooks. challenges the tradion lunch, I do This new restaurant tional dining experience think the pricing was within reachallenges the by centering its menu son for a Westtraditional port restaurant. dining expearound different tapas Sometimes rience by cenoptions with a focus on it’s hard for famtering its menu ilies to go out to around differseafood. dinner around ent tapas optown with kids tions with a focus on seafood. due to the lack of accommodations for As an avid seafood lover, I was excited these young children. While tapas may to view the menu, which included many highlight the menu, 190 Main does offer appropriate options such as “spicy tuna many traditional sandwiches and salads tartare,” “ginger orange shrimp” and “fish along with classic kid friendly options. Overall I was more than satisfied and chips.” I couldn’t help but do a little research on fan-favorites before coming to with my experience at 190 Main giving the restaurant, so I ordered the crispy rice it a rating of a four out of five. Not only with sashimi and the ginger orange shrimp, was the food great, but the staff also crewhich received high praises on Yelp. ated a positive atmosphere with their The dishes were brought out rather friendly attitude towards their guests.

Cate Casparius ’19 | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL


features a variety of dishes, with a heavy emphasis on seafood. The unique twist on the traditional tapas boasts 190 Main’s innovative menu. Weston resident and owner Melissa Gorman grew up in Savannah, Georgia where she managed a few restaurants. (right) Lobster rolls, a crowd favorite, embellished with chives and served with potatoes on the side. (below) Grilled chicken sandwich offered with a side of fries. (bottom right) Fish tacos topped with coleslaw.

Photos contributed by 190 Main


March 23, 2018



‘Red Sparrow’ incorporates twists, turns and confusion Eli Corenthal ’19 & Zach Strober ’19


rom the director of the “Hunger G a m e s ” franchise, Francis Lawrence, comes “Red Sparrow,” a confusing drama set in a fictional Cold War “2.0.” The movie stars Oscar-winner Jennifer Lawrence as Dominika Egorova, a Russian ballerina who is later recruited to a Sparrow school, a place that trains operatives to use their body as a weapon. This long-winded drama

Red Sparrow in Review 48% Rotten Tomatoes

6.7/10 IMDb

Our Review: 3.5/5

Graphic by Katie Howard ’19

Graphic by Carolyn Gray ’19

has many twists and turns, so much former CIA operative. In an interview with so that we were left confused multi- National Public Radio, Matthews claimed ple times throughout the movie. the movie “[got] it right. They stayed Throughout the film there are fairly close to the plot of the [...] book. multiple scenes that drag on, which Generally, the tradecraft is authentic and at times make the movie boring. reflected the old Cold War techniques.” In order to follow the plot, Lawrence’s performance is incredibly we had to realistic, examine but her every small preparaIn order to follow the detail, for plot, we had to exam- tion which is the movdifficult in ine every small detail, ie did not a movie that come withwhich was difficult in always has out some a lot going b l o o d , a movie that always on. Howsweat and had a lot going on. ever, there tears. She were also trained times when “Red five days Sparrow” is riveting. Lawrence’s a week for four months with Kurt Froconstant back and forth with co star man, a ballet dancer that has worked Joel Edgetron, who plays Nathaniel with other actors such as Natalie PortNash, kept us on the edge of our seats. man, according to the Huffington Post. And there are other The movie is rated R for a reatimes when the sto- son. Throughout the movie there are ry felt very re- multiple cringe-worthy moments alistic, which that are tough to watch. We would may be due not recommend this movie to anyto the fact one who is sensitive to sexual violence. that the The movie plays to a sophisticatmovie is ed audience, one with a keen attention based on to detail and one who can sit through a book, a two hour plus movie. So, if you’re written by up to the challenge and enjoy twistJason Mat- ed dramas, head out to catch “Red thews, a Sparrow” while it is still in theaters.

Eat Noodle and Rice serves up ramen and pho in Bijou Square Olivia Foster ’18

Fairfield Avenue, an up and coming street in Bridgeport and home to the Bijou Theatre, has been a welcoming location for a number of ethnic restaurants. Located at 269 Fairfield Avenue, Eat Noodle and Rice, opened by Chef Skye Kwok, joined the ranks and serves delicious ramen and noodle dishes. Kwok owns Sweet Basil in Fairfield and Pink Sumo Sushi and Sake Cafe in Westport, but Eat Noodle and Rice is his first restaurant in Bridgeport. “Bridgeport is growing right now,” Kwok said in an interview with CTBites. “When I came to this area I was surprised (at how) it changed a lot, and I saw a lot of potential.” Upon arriving at 6:00 p.m., minimalistic table settings donned a rather empty seating area; however, it got more crowded as the night went on. The menu is divided into four categories: noodle soup, rice, salad and appetizers, with prices ranging from $5 to $10. The dishes in the noodle soup section of the menu are incredibly filling, so I recommend trying one or two appetizers and then ordering one noodle soup dish. For appetizers, the steamed pork dumplings are a great, refreshing bite before a rather daunting main course. Encased in a soft and delicate dough, the pork is mixed with herbs and rests next to a sweet and sour sauce that proved to overpower the already tasty dumplings. The noodle dishes are served in massive

bowls with decorative wooden “slurping” spoons. Each of the three noodle dishes I tried had a captivating fusion of flavors in the broth, but the curry crispy chicken noodle soup is a must have. The plating is an impressive masterpiece, with the crispy chicken stacked in the middle of a curry soup with carrots, tomatoes and thin egg noodle. The crispy chicken fell apart in my mouth. It was the perfect blend of comfort food and rich, flavorful cuisine. If you’re looking for a spicy fix, the tom yam chicken noodle dish is a great option. The broth is heavy with mint and cilantro in a fishy sauce, creating a sour flavor. This dish is definitely different from traditional ramen and noodle dishes, as the broth and chicken both add to the overall spice and seasoning of the dish. Of the three noodle dishes, the ramen fell flat. The most traditional of the three main courses, the ramen suffered from a rather boring broth and could have used a bit more flavor and spice. The ramen noodles were the saving grace of the dish, but they could not make up for the lack of flavor and cohesion between the ingredients. With a casual atmosphere and an interesting blend of flavors, Eat Noodle and Rice is sure to be a great option to grab a quick bite to eat outside of the usual Westport eateries.

RAMEN IN BIJOU SQUARE (top) The tom yam chicken noodle dish is an ideal option if you’re looking for a spicy kick. (middle) The steam pork dumplings are served with a side of sweet and sour sauce. (bottom) The curry crispy chicken noodle soup features an intricate blend of steamed vegetables and crispy chicken in a curry broth.

Photos by Olivia Foster ’18


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March 23, 2018

Homework help on all subjects including AP, ACT and SAT prep, study skills and organizational coaching 1354 Post Road East | Westport | 203 987 3343 | STAPLES HIGH SCHOOL




March 23, 2018




(left to right) Captain Chris Drbal ’18 runs to first base. Drbal won All-West Division FCIAC Player of the Year. Chad Knight ’19 winds up to pitch. Knight is verbally comitted to Duke University for baseball. Harry Azadian ’19 slides in to home plate. Azadian has been playing baseball since he was four years old.

Photos by Ellie Kravatz ’18

Staples boys’ baseball team swings into upcoming season


Serena Ye ’20

ast year, the Staples baseball team claimed their first state LL championship ever. To capture the title, the Wreckers defeated Amity Regional High School, who had won the previous four state championships, in a 5-1 upset victory. But that was last year. In the upcoming 2018 spring season, the team will be striving to live up to their title and achieve similar success, led by captains Chris Drbal ’18, Chad Knight ’19 and Matt Stone ’18. Jack McFarland, varsity head coach, will be leading the Wreckers for his 13th year, maintaining high expectations for the team. “Instead of chasing the state title, we will be defending it everyday,” McFarland said.

Captains Drbal and Knight both ac- ’17, Adam Feuer ’17 and Michael Fanknowledge that the biggest change for the ning ’17 have left some holes in the team new season is that they will be playing that new players will be looking to fill. with a target on their back. Additionally, For the captains, the importance of they will be playing with a mindset that teamwork seems to be the key to success. nothing can come Wit h easily. “Instead of the loss “Instead of chasing the state laying back and of three title, we will be defending it reminiscing about pitchers everyday.” last year, we have and five -Jack McFarland, been working exformer Head Baseball Coach tremely hard in the seniors, off-season in order t h e to prepare ourt e a m selves to compete at our maxi- is looking for players from last year to mum capabilities,” Drbal said. make their varsity debuts. “Even though A new season also means a new team. we have a less experienced team this Key players from last year like Ben Caspar- year, there’s no doubt after learning ius ’17, Ryan Fitton ’17, George Goldstein from the success of last year’s season

that any desired success this year will certainly be a team effort,” Knight said. Underclassmen were able to gain valuable experience during last year’s championship campaign and understand the competitive atmosphere that comes with each game and team practice. Under the leadership of McFarland, Drbal believes that the new players can help repeat last year’s success. “Coach McFarland does a great job of creating this exposure, and for this reason I expect the younger kids will certainly step up this year and feel comfortable playing under any situation that arises,” Drbal said. With many returning players from the state championship team last year as well as new younger players, Drbal and the team is excited to achieve their goals to be state and FCIAC champions.

CTE studies cause decline in Westport PAL participation Teddy Dienst ’20 & Alex Massoud ’20 The Westport Police Athletic League (PAL) football program continues to decline in popularity among elementary and middle school students. Parents and children have begun to express concern over playing football as a result of studies which show that football is the number one cause of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) and other brain injuries such as concussions. CTE is a brain disease caused by repeated blows to the head, which can lead to concussion-like symptoms, a short memory and various physical issues throughout the body over the course of one’s life, according to Boston University. The disease is most often found in football players. As of now, it can only be diagnosed after death. Former Pittsburgh Steeler and former Westport PAL football coach Mark Didio explained the decrease in the number of Westport PAL participants. “Players in PAL have gone down because parents are worried about their kids sustaining a head injury, and it having a long term negative effect,” he said. Due to the studies on CTE, the PAL program is attempting to make football safer

for its players. About five years ago, the Despite this, Westport PAL continues cussions playing football, and I didn’t want program began requiring all participants to to see a steady decline in membership, to take that chance,” DesMarteau said. wear Guardian protective helmets during and many grades have been forced to deFurther factoring into this decline in their tri-weekly practices in order to pre- crease their number of teams from two to participation is the publishing of a study vent concussions and trauma to the brain. one. Jake DesMarteau ’20, who only played in July of 2017, stating that out of 202 Additionally, in an attempt to prevent football for one year, recalls the time he deceased former football players tested, helmet to helmet collisions, youth foot- spent on the field in fourth grade and his over 85 percent of them were diagnosed ball programs have introduced “Heads Up decision to quit. “I wanted to play, but I with CTE. To add on to this, according Tackling,” run by USA Football. The ini- knew that so many kids were getting con- to the New York Daily News, there has tiative strives been a 58 percent increase in concusto teach kids sions over the past two years, as comhow to tackpared to the 2014 season in the NFL. le properly Along with DesMarteau, Nick without inKornfeld ’20 factored in potential flicting damhealth risks in his decision to stop age to the playing football after his freshman head. Accordyear. “With football being an often viing to Didio, olent sport, I felt that the chance of the efforts long-term injury to my brain, among seem to be other reasons, outweighed the pros working. “In of playing for my sophomore year,” PAL football Kornfeld said. the number Many adolescents play football of concusbecause their parents did. Jay O’donsions have nell ’84, is one of those parents. “I really started encouraged my son, Ben, to play beto go down Photo contributed by Alex Massoud ’20 cause I used to play quarterback for due to the BEST PALS (from left to right) Jake Thaw ’20, Max Iannone ’20, Josh DeDominico the Staples team,” O’donnell said. “But practice of saf- ’20, Zach Iannicone ’20 and Adam Petro ’20 line up, hands on knees, on the after learning about the true dangers er tackling,” 50 yard line. As of 2013, every Westport P.A.L. football coach will be trained of the game and the effect it has on Didio said. in Heads Up Football techniques before leading their teams this season. your body, I decided to pull Ben out.”


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March 23, 2018




March 23, 2018


Senior athletes commit to Division I schools Nicole Dienst ’18


he day begins with a routine refresh of the email inbox. Reading a text from a high school or club coach advising which schools to look at and reach out to. Countless checks of the voicemail and missed calls to see if the college coach called you back. And when you finally see that email invitation for a visit, a voicemail from the head coach or any sign of interest, the burden and mental taxation of the recruiting process begins to melt away into feelings of joy and pride. Part of the recruiting process is trying to find a school that is academically and athletically appealing to the student athlete. For many who want to be recruited, years of training, countless visits to different schools and giving up summers for camps, clinics and showcases are necessary. Some of the division one Staples commits are a testament to the true grit and dedication required. This process is beginning earlier and

earlier, especially in the lacrosse world. I’m so glad I stuck with it because it is the Abby Najarian ’18 commost rewardmitted to Lafayette Col- “The recruiting process was ing,” Najarian lege in the middle of her definitely hard and needed said. “I’m looksophomore year, being a lot of commitment, but I’m ing forward to seen by college coaches so glad I stuck with it.” learning more beginning as early as the about lacrosse -Abby Najarian ’18 summer going into ninth at the next level grade. “The recruiting and really bondprocess was definitely hard and needed a lot of commitment, but

Photos by Ella Bayazit ’20 Graphics by Katie Howard ’19

COMMITTED COMMITS (left to right) Evan Zinn ’18 committed to Johns Hopkins University as a freshman, Meghan Johnson ’18 will be attending University of Delaware and Abby Najarian ’18 is committed to Lafayette College whose overall lacrosse record is 3-3 this season.

ing with my new teammates.” Similarly, Evan Zinn ’18, Staples’ boys lacrosse player and Johns Hopkins University commit, was sought after beginning in middle school. He currently ranks number seven in the country for the class of 2018 by recruiting website Recruiting Rundown. Zinn especially allocated an intense level of commitment to the recruiting process. “I’ve always worked hard to be the best lacrosse player I could and by doing so, I was fortunate to get noticed and recruited by many college coaches,” Zinn said. “I definitely had to sacrifice may summers traveling around the east coast for tournaments with my club team, the Long Island Express North, but clearly it was worth every minute.” For other sports, the recruiting process can be much different involving consideration of other variables. Eden Schumer ’18 who is committed to Duke University for rowing experienced this, having to send voice recordings of herself, while navigating her teammates in a race, to interested college coaches. But despite this difference, Schumer describes the recruiting process similarly to that of the lacrosse players. “To continue doing something I love is exciting, so no matter what the college transition is like, that part of my life will be constant and supporting me in whatever I decide to study, ” Schumer said. “It took everything I thought I was ever capable of.”

March Madness launches both nationally, at Staples that comes in and does some damage,” Oliver Lindenbaum ’19 said. “We have strong guard play, and our leaders are paving the way for the rest of the players.” As the regular season for college basAfter a disappointing season last year, ketball comes to an end and spring ap- professional oddsmakers are now favorproaches, people from all over the world ing the second seed Duke Blue Devils to and of all ages dial in for the annual NCAA go far into the tournament because of the college basketball tournament, March addition of Marvin Bagley who recently Madness. March Madness is a tourna- came back from a knee injury. “I believe ment which seeds different teams based the Duke Blue Devils will continue their on the outcome of their regular season strong season and bring another Naand conference tournament performance. tional Championship to Durham,” Duke This year, universities that are popular baseball commit Chad Knight ’19 said. among Staples graduates have made it into Students participated in their own the tournament and are heavily favored. March Madness on March 15 in the StaSchools including Villanova, Duke and ples gym. They emulated the bracket forMichigan all received high seeds and sur- mat of the NCAA tournament and seedvived the first weekend of the tournament. ed the 16 teams according to how many Marshall Heiser ’18, an avid college games they had won and lost during the basketball fan and son of two Villano- season. Rec’s March Madness is a douva alumni, believes that March Madness ble elimination tournament where games will be particularly interesting to watch are divided by freshman playing sophthis season. “This year will be an incred- omores and juniors playing seniors. ible showing of basketball because there Team Rossi/Lonergan came into the are not clear favorites to win,” Heiser tournament ranked number one oversaid. “Every team has lost more than a all, but by the end of the first day of the few games so there is no alpha dog team.” tournament, they fell to the number eight This year, “This year will be an incredible seed Eigen/Gabor. “It was the Big East an amazing game played has two showing of basketball because by Eigen/Gabor,” Grifn u m b e r there are not clear favorites to fin Kass ’19 of team Kass one seeds, said. “They attacked the Xavier and win.” paint and controlled the Vi l lanova, -Marshall Heiser ’18 ball for the entire game. that experts I thought this game was believe could win the National Champi- the most impressive rec game all season.” onship. Other teams that were believed The number two seed, O’donnell/Portto make it far into the tournament are man, came out on fire winning their first the Kansas Jayhawks, the Virginia Cav- two games before playing the number aliers, the North Carolina Tar Heels, the three seed, Zinn/Levi. Team O’donnell/ Michigan State Spartans and the Purdue Portman started the game on a 9-2 run Boilermakers. After the first weekend of by hitting four shots. “The whole gym the tournament, Xavier, North Carolina thought it was over; little did we know and Michigan State were all eliminated. that the game had just started,” Gabe Wick The most surprising upset was the over- ’19, who was watching in the stands, said. all number one seeded Virginia Cavaliers Team Levi/Zinn took over the next losing to the sixteen seeded UMBC Re- 10 minutes to win 25-20. They built their trievers. This was the first sixteen seed lead by continuously feeding Harris Levi to ever beat a one seed in the history of ’18 who finished the game with 14 points. the tournament that dates back to 1939. Team Reale, a junior team, won Due to the potential for upsets, many all three games and will face team Staples students expect that the nation- Zinn/Levi in the Finals on March 22. al champion won’t be a number one or “This game will be a hard fought battle,” number two seed. “I believe that this year’s Uri Catton ’18, a rec basketball fan, said. Michigan Wolverines team who won the “The guard play on both teams is unbeBig 10 Tournament will be an upset team lievable in Mason Reale and Harris Levi.”

Zach Feinstein ’18

Photo by Charlie Colasurdo ’18

REC MADNESS Will Burch ’18 participated in the Rec

March Madness Tournament on Thursday, March 15. The final game will be played on March 22 with Team Reale vs. Team Zinn/Levi.


24 Sports

March 23, 2018


Cheerleading lands second in state competition Photo by Amelia Brown ’18


Amelia Brown ’18

fter having not placed within the top eight for the past three years, the Staples Cheerleading team made it back to the State Championships in New Haven, Connecticut, on March 4 and took second place. Competing in the co-ed division the first time since 2014, the team placed behind Seymour High School with 162.6 points out of 200. While the co-ed class that Staples competed in had only 19 other teams, the entire event had five different classes with 90 teams total. So, despite not taking home first, their spot still gained them an invitation to Regionals in New Hampshire on March 17 and a spot at the Team of the Year competition on March 10. Although the team chose not to attend Regionals, they did place 11th in Team of the Year. “Work ethic was something new this year we “Our team tried to in the past push,” Jenna Doran hasn’t had ’18, one of a chance at the co-capeven placing, tains, said. “Our team but this year in the past we had an hasn’t had actual shot...” a chance at even plac-Jenna ing, but Doran ’18 this year we had an actual shot so that’s what was really emphasized this year.” While the team was led by Doran and Aliza Dodge ’18, the rest of the 15 person competition team was made up of non-senior members. “We have a lot of juniors that are really prepared to take the lead and make sure we have the same season or even better next year,” Maddy Crouch ’19 said. When looking to the future, Julianne McGrath ’20 also is optimistic about where the team will go. “After this season I feel like our team will really progress throughout the years,” McGrath said, “and overall work harder to achieve goals, like eventually coming in first at States, so just pushing hard to get that.” Even though winning a state championship may be the goal, the cheerleaders get something else out of being part of the team. Doran emphasized that cheerleading is different from other sports because, unlike teams that have a three or four month season, cheer goes for almost nine months. “I’d say friendships and being with the team for four years [is the best part],” Doran said. “We’ve had a lot of coach changes but it’s the people, the teammates, who stay consistent throughout the seasons.”

SCORING SECOND The Staples cheerleading team perform their

routine at the state competition in New Haven, Connecticut. Their overall score was 162.6 points out of 200.


page 2 Haskell runs for office

page 8 Tax cuts

page 14

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Orphenians “Merrily We Roll Along” Dana Pearlberg ’20 takes a look into The Staples orphenians are headed to Staples players to perform “Merrily Will Haskell ’14 announces his run for the implication of Trump’s tax plan on Australia this summer to sing. We Roll Along” for their spring show. Connecticut State Senate. the economy.


Profile for Inklings

March 2018  

March 2018