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Volume 54 NO. 3 January 2013

Link Crew provides structured social interaction

Student body rallies against rival SPORTS page 8

Girls’ soccer sets sights on C.I.F. playoffs

FEATURE page 4

SPORTS page 8

Student Newspaper of La Mirada High School

13520 Adelfa Drive, La Mirada, CA 90638

Matador Scholar Academy establishes student board By Alice Kang

Among the various opportunities provided to the highly motivated students of La Mirada High school who aspire to achieve their highest potential is the Matador Scholar Academy. The M.S.A. is an academy available to all students who wish to challenge their academic strengths while at the same time, acquire college course credit. Ms. Melissa Naudin, English, PRINTED WITH PERMISSION OF MONICA PEREZ is the M.S.A. coordinator. UnSO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE Senior candidates for the Mr. La Mirada 2013 crown perform their opening dance for family, friends, and der her leadership, the scholar fans on January 12th. Girls’ League members Maddy Thompson, ‘15, and Mindy Sandoval, ‘15, choreographed the five minute dance. academy has renewed a goal on student academic achievement and recognition; “It’s important that we bring more focus on the academic achievements of the judges; Mayor of La Mirada Ga- candidate, the boys and their school. There are so many sucBy Jackie Leeder briel Garcia, Los Angeles County friends featured current fashion cessful students on campus and I At 7:03PM on Saturday Janu- Fire Battalion Chief Ken Doug- exhibiting the boys’ style, which think we need to give them more ary 12th, over a hundred family, las, and La Mirada businessman ranged from the skater Hipster recognition.” friends, and fans, along with the and editor of the La Mirada Blog, styles to relaxed Hawaiian. BenIn order to achieve the goal, jamin Khemthong’s, ’13, escort Ms. Naudin created a student mayor of La Mirada, a Fire Chief, Tony Aiello. Prior to the opening dance, Cheyanne Leeder, ’15, revealed “I board to represent the scholar and local businessman as judges, filed in and took their seats await- baby pictures of each boy were was a last minute escort, walking academy students. Community ing the performance of ten senior displayed on a giant screen. on stage was really exciting and I Services Chair of the M.S.A., boys who vowed for the title of Shortly after, Samantha Scovel just wanted to make it all about Emily DeBoer, ’13, states, “I the evening’s host took to the mi- Ben, and I think I did a good job.” think the M.S.A. now has a Mr. La Mirada 2013. The talent portion of the night more prestigious standing on On this evening the Girls’ crophone to begin the festivities. The show began with the boys was by far the most exciting and campus thanks to the dedication League advised by Mr. John Alvarez, and under the leadership dressed in cowboy attire, as the competitive. The outlaws illus- and excitement recently exhibitof Bre Flores, ’13 and Samantha theme was La Mirada’s Most trated their secret talents, come- ed.” Newly elected representative dy, dancing, singing and the most of the junior class, Joyce Lee, ’14, Scovel, ’14, made the La Mirada Wanted. nerve wrecking talent of the night echoed this sentiment by comAfter making an impression M.P.R. glamorous with lights shimmering upon the stage, cat- via dance they were ready to in- fire dancing. Diamond Lagmay menting on the benefits of the walk, and just above the catwalk troduce themselves down the engaged the entire audience with M.S.A., “I see it as a program was an array of lights and decora- catwalk with their parents by his chants and acrobatic mastery that all students can come to if tions heralding the Mr. La Mira- their side. Surprisingly, some can- of fire. Audience member, Sara they want to prepare for college didates and parents coordinated Barajas, ’16 revealed, “Diamond’s and be more involved on camda contestants. dance had me on the edge of pus.” Seated in front of the catwalk dance moves. After the introduction of each [see Mr. LM, pg 4] It is required of students to were three distinguished guest

take a minimum of one honors or Advanced Placement course to be a member of the M.S.A.. “By taking challenging and rigorous courses, students are showing their highest potential to their prospective colleges,” says Mr. David Hallum, LMHS Counselor. “Students who have been in the M.S.A. usually do well in four-year colleges and this builds the reputation of our school.” By being a part of the M.S.A., not only are students of La Mirada High school able to demonstrate their excellence in academics, but they are also able to obtain valuable knowledge that is of much benefit both inside and outside of the classroom. Due to the positive contributions of Ms. Naudin and countless members of the M.S.A., the program has recently shown significant amounts of enhancements. From the newly formed parent booster club to the elected student leadership board, the M.S.A. has made beneficial improvements. The student board will guide the decisions related to student success in higher education, specifically, university admission. However, Ms. Naudin claims that this is merely the beginning. The supporters of the M.S.A., along with Ms. Naudin, plan on further expanding and developing the program throughout the next several years. As more motivated and ambitious students on campus are recruited and greater advancements are made, the M.S.A. is sure to reach its goals.

Powder Puff: GQ theme set for March 8th event


Outlaw Lagmay prevails

By Anthony Salgado

ers. Senior, Taylor has been in A.S.B. for the past four years and she says, “I like to be involved with our school events. Although Every Spring a rite of passage is renewed with the annual Pow- it’s stressful at times, the end result is always worth it.”  Late February will mark the start time for the girls to begin der Puff football game and rallies. Powder Puff is a decades long tradition for students, staff, and families as they look forward practice for their respective class. As in previous year, the LMHS to competition on the football field and the rallies on campus. Football Boosters will manage the game and practices at GoodThis event is a chance for the girls of the senior and junior classes man Stadium. Meanwhile, A.S.B. will conduct all the rallies. Senior voting for Powder Puff Top 15 will be on February 4th to square off in a flag football game and boys of both classes to vie for the GQ Powder Puff Throne. Taylor Sinnott, ‘13, A.S.B. . Seniors will vote for Top 5 on February 19th. The always anmember explains, “This game is very important because it brings ticipated Powder Puff Spotlight Rally will held in the gym on our students together for a little friendly competition.” The Pow- March 1st. School-wide voting for the Powder Puff King will be der Puff game is set to take place the evening of March 8, 2013.  March 4th. All juniors and seniors wishing to participate must be in good The Powder Puff theme is GQ: L. M.’s Man of the Year. Prepaacademic standing, and meet all eligibility requirements. ration for Powder Puff began earlier this school year with A.S.B. Underclassman are encouraged to attend all rallies. Freshmen at the helm. In all there are almost 200 people involved in executing this seminal event; including A.S.B., coaches, and play- support the Class of 2013, and sophomores support 2014.

CLASS OF2013 and CLASS OF 2014 GIRLS RANK YOURSELF ON YOUR COMMITMENT TOTALLY COMMITTED The Terminator You do whatever it takes to Pitch Perfect secure a You always victory. cheer on your team/class. Field Diva You are more concerned about the way you look than your game.

Burger Queen You complain until you get it your way. NOT COMMITTED

02 NEWS January 28, 2013

IN BRIEF Into the Woods auditions held and rehearsals begin Into The Woods is a collaboration of multiple fairy-tales which excite the senses in new and interesting ways. This unique musical combines classic stories such as Cinderella and Rapunzel combined with a modern twist along with an added original storyline. Into The Woods is a play that will surely leave you amazed. Mr. Trumbo oversaw the auditions in room 414, The Little Theater, alongside young prodigies Sabrina Acosta, ’13 and Tim Coil, ’14, both of whom are gifted assistant directors. Students who auditioned on Monday January 14, 2013 were required to sing 16 bars of a music from their repertoire. The casting is as follows; Wolf/ Cindy’s Prince: Austin Baran, Jack: Mark Sologuren, Rapunzel’s Prince: Christopher Rodriguez, Steward: Brian Hanst, Granny: Milan Granillo, Witch: Briana Bonilla, Red: Brianna Pineda, Narrator/Mystery Man: Tanner Oertel, and Lucinda: Ashley Adinolfi.

-Alexandria Delgadillo

Girls’ League to volunteer during the Surf City Marathon The La Mirada High School Girls’ League will volunteer on February 2nd, in Huntington Beach in support of the Surf City Marathon. Last year over 30 Girls’ League members volunteered for the event. This year, Volunteer Coordinator Nivea Nieva, ’13, will seek to enlist 45 members. The event will take place from 7:00AM until 2:00PM. Volunteers will distribute race bibs, goody bags, and provide general information to the 20,000 runners who will participate in this year’s race during Super Bowl weekend. Girls who are interested in volunteering may pick up a permission slip in room 170 or from any GL board member.

-Matthew Alavrez

El Toro

Campus beautification project begins By Karina Zaragoza La Mirada High School’s Mr. Yoshioka, Advanced Wood, along with the green construction and alternative energy level 2 & 3 classes are panning to start a multiple patio and deck project near the grass area right outside of Mr. Seal’s office near the one hundred buildings. Beginning January 9, 2013, students began removing all the grass from the lawn area. The structure is intended to be 16’ x 24’ in size, low to the ground, handicapped accessible, and movable if needed. The funding of this structure is estimated to cost around $3,000 to $3,500. What is the objective of this project? According to Mr. Yoshioka, “as students learn how to plan, draw, and build an outdoor patio and deck, they will be introduced to basic design and construction methods for single-story resi-

-Matthew Alvarez


BREAKING GROUND Mark Garcia, ‘14 , crew chief initiates the groundbreaking adja-

cent to the 150 building. Students will construct a patio and deck to accommodate staff.

on our own. We have different groups that are assigned to do different tasks and my group includes Olga Garcia, ’13 Michelle Seitz, ‘15, and Mark Garcia, ‘14 which is one of the crew chiefs.” Commenting about the duties of each of the groups, Monica adds, “Our group is starting to dig on the area. The groups will then switch and send another to do the digging.” Monica stated that the

most important skill needed in most of their projects is accuracy in measurement. “If one of the measurements isn’t right, it can’t be put together and you would have to start all over.” Mr. Yoshioka and the students are expected to be finished with the patio within 15 to 20 weeks. Until the full completion of their project, much hard work and diligence will be required of them.

La Mirada city manager retires By Madeline Rodriguez A much respected La Mirada city manager, Thomas Robinson, is expected to retire by March of 2013. “He began his career in municipal government in 1972, and performed administrative duties for the cities of Cerritos and Commerce.” (La Mirada Living.) Mr. Robinson first served the city of La Mirada in 1985, when he was appointed as the Community Resource Manager until 2001. In September 2008, Thomas Robinson was selected as the City Manager of La Mirada. Thomas Robinson

Sadie Hawkins tickets on sale February 4th Sadie Hawkins dance is to be held on Saturday February 23rd at Boomers in Fountain Valley. Ticket sales will begin on February 4th through February 8th priced at $30 dollars with A.S.B. and $40.00 without A.S.B.. To attend the dance you must meet the following requirements; 1. No more than 12 period in house suspensions, 2. No more then 3 Saturday School assignments (2 or 4 hours), 3. No more than 3 days of suspension, and 4. No more than 2 unsatisfactory on last report card.

dential wood decks”. The skills that are intended to be used during this project are decking requirements, joist sizing, beam sizing, deck framing plans, rim joist requirements, footing, deck stability, guard requirements, computer aided design skills, concrete forming, and building codes. In order to make this patio, the students will level the building surface area and install 2” x 6” x 16’ studs onto deck blocks. Afterwards, the mix and concrete for the 4” x 4” roof post will be made. In order to install the ceiling joists on top beams, students will be required to nail the edge around perimeter and tar and nail the asphalt roofing material. Monica Perez, ’13, one of the students helping to make the patio, explains, “We just started the project on January 13th. Before that, in order to help us prepare for the real deal, we made a mini patio

was involved in many projects. Splash! was one of the projects where he really put all of his time and energy. Many were very pleased with his management including Norma Sagastume, a resident of La Mirada. She says, “I really liked how he handled the city. He kept it clean and youthful. I’d like to see the next city manager just continue Mr. Robinson’s work-ethic and strive to maintain the upgrades as well as the taggers out of the city.” So far the public safety has been on top of cleaning up after hoodlums’ messes. I, as a citizen, really appreciate knowing that they

Did you attend school on 12/21/12? “The reason I went to school was because I knew that I would be safe with all the security we have and I wanted to be with my friends” MATTHEW ALVAREZ /ELTORO

are doing their job. With that being said, Mr. Robinson did an excellent job since 2008. In fact, all of the past managers also have work together to better our city and their work doesn’t go unnoticed. He has been involved in many projects that have benefited out city significantly. One project is the construction of the new Walgreen’s located on La Mirada Boulevard and Imperial Highway. This project has already benefited residents living around that area. All of the improvements will keep property values high. Although residents are sad to


Did you believe the world would end on December 21st?

NO / 84%

– Devin Gooch, ‘15 Did you feel safe on campus on December 21st?

“I went to school because I wanted to know for myself what all the rumors were about.” MATTHEW ALVAREZ /ELTORO

see such a wonderful, hardworking city manager retire, they are hopeful that his work ethic will still be thought of and honored. Mrs. Sagastume hopes for better change within our community. Another resident, Ron Martinez also chimes in and Says, “Mr. Robinson will always be a respected man for all that he has done. We appreciate his ideas and changes that he has made. Mr. Robinson looks to continue his professional relationship with the city after retirement. His contributions as city manager is tough times are to be commended.

– Noemi Bedolla, ‘13

Attendance Rate on 12/21/12


YES / 92%

Additional security and L.A. County Sheriff support, proved reassuring to students who attended school in the wake of rumors.

EDUCATION January 28, 2013 03

El Toro

Newly renovated college and career center to personalize service


ONE TO ONE Ila Paterson, LMHS Counselor, discusses financial aid deadlines with Victoria Casteneda, ‘13, during lunch. All five site counselors service students during lunch.

A timid freshman walks into the college and career center unsure of how to ask but with a mind full of questions. Behind the freshman is a confident senior ready to ask for a recommendation letter. From the intimidated freshman to the assured senior the college and career center provides each with answers, and assistance. The college and career center moved to a more centralized location in order to ensure more “student accessibility as well provide a welcoming environment,” as Mr. David Hallum, LMHS Counselor, notes.

Final exams: preparation and practice By Kassondra Fortin As we celebrate the new semester and look forward to new courses, teachers, and delight in our old standbys, let’s reflect on what we did well to prepare ourselves for successful final exams. In some cases we may even learn from our recent past missteps to prepare for second semester finals in, do I dare say... 18 weeks. Teachers were asked the question “how did you help students prepare for finals?” Mrs. Julia Hernandez, calculus stated, “we work hard all semester covering the materials that will be tested. We spend the three days prior to the final doing one or two prac-

tice final exams to prepare.” Teachers were also asked if they provided any extra help for students, Mrs. Wood, English, replied, “yes of course I help them during lunch and during 4th, my conference period. I also have hired assistants in class to work with students. Twice a week I stay after school and know of other teachers who do the same for their students.” AVID instructor Mark Williams, English, focused on the strengths of creating flashcards as a tool for studying, “The strong points are that the students get a practical tool they can use for the rest of their academic careers and that they are

allowed to use their flashcards for the vocabulary final, if they have created them correctly. It doesn’t do any good to have a broken tool. Students often followed their teacher’s lead, “I read my notes and review the chapters in my text book which works for me but may not work for other students.” reflected Grace Smith, ’14. Elizabeth Hernandez, ‘14, commented “I go over my study guides and review my notes which works. So as some of us prepare to place our report card on the fridge, and others of us prepare to wait by the mailbox, let us all make this semester Grade “A”.

Sydney Quick, ’13, claims, “It definitely made an impact, mainly because it’s right in front you can’t miss it.” Similarly, Senior Vanessa Mendiola noticed, “The career center is much more open and bigger now that it has moved.” To make the career center a reality and more service orientated Mrs. Ila Patterson, LMHS Counselor and Mr. Hallum began planning “We met with students on campus to ask what kinds of things would make the college and career center a welcoming place,” recalls Mrs. Patterson. In addition, Mrs. Patterson encourages students to “come up with ideas that will make it an inviting place. Any colleges


By Ana Sanchez

or speakers that students want to see we will try to bring into the school.” The college and career center offers a variety of resources. “The resources include information regarding scholarships, community colleges, C.S.U., U.C.’s, trade schools, military, work permits, and job placement” explains Mrs. Patterson. Along with the counseling staff the center employs Ms. Melissa Rivera, Job Development Specialist and Ms. Amy Gilman, Workability Specialist. Students seeking information on work permits and even applications for local employment are encouraged to visit the center.

“I studied for finals by reviewing my notes and homework which were suggested by teachers as the most efficient way.” VICTORIA QUEZADA /ELTORO

Taylor Hansen, ‘15

“I just listened to the teacher in every class, took notes and it seems to work.” VICTORIA QUEZADA /ELTORO

Adam Carter, ‘13

“I studied by reading over my notes many times which helps me memorize what I’ve learned. I also have the support from my girlfriend to help.” VICTORIA QUEZADA /ELTORO

Jacob King, ‘14

Matadors of the Month

Julia Hawk



Language Arts. Mainly because I love to read and write.


I don’t have a highlight experience yet but it has been a good year so far.


One day I want to become a beautician and a makeup artist.


I would say La Mirada High is a great school to go to. We have nice teachers as well as students. Anyone would enjoy this school.





Carley Romanowski Bryce Parent Current GPA: 4.50

Current GPA: 3.50

Ryan Leano

Kyli Watkins





For me it’s playing on the high school volleyball team because it is a lot of fun, it’s competitive and you make a lot of friends.





Math, because it is one of my stronger subjects.


At La Mirada we have decent teachers, a good volleyball team, and we have an honors program.

My favorite teacher Mr. Casida because he is funny and a little odd. My high school highlight is winning first place in soccer last year. I want to become a marine biologist.


My role model is Sheldon Cooper.

Current GPA: 3.80

Physics was my most successful subject, I felt most accomplished taking the course. Track, FBLA, and Key Club


Mr. Rodriguez. Rod reminds me of Breaking Bad the TV. series.


Awesome people, fun classes, and interesting elective choices.

Current GPA: 4.50

Mrs. Salazar. Not only has she taught and coached me, but acted as a friend as well.


Playing in C.I.F. on the varsity volleyball team was a great experience.


I’d like to be very successful. I’m not sure what I will be yet. I am considering nursing, teaching, or forensic science as an investigator.

04 FEATURE January 28, 2013

El Toro

Singing for fun and love By Chelsea Shrubb



LASTING MEMORIES (clockwise) Diamond Lagmay, ‘13, earned the title and crown of Mr.

La Mirada 2013 during the January 12, 2013 event. Diamond utilized real fire during his talent performance. Brain Bustos, ‘13, works the judges with his smile as his escort Christina Nunez, ‘13, proves to be formidable in her role. Timmy Lee, ‘13, is flanked by his parents donning sunglasses and reenacting a scene somewhere between a Beastie Boys video and Skyfall. A.S.B. President Colin Hightower, ‘13, works his mojo during the opening dance providing a special treat to all the VIP’s seated close to the catwalk. In a scene from the Star Wars saga, Aaron Agajanian, ‘13, is anointed a Jedi Knight by his escort Tiffany Carr, ‘13. [cont. from pg. 1 Mr. LM] my seat. I didn’t know if it was dangerous or not, and I was enthralled with everything he did especially holding the flames on his feet.” The formal portion of the evening featured the outlaws attired in tuxedos from La Mirada Rent-A-Tux. Shahkar Madni and Devon White


earned runner up with Diamond Lagmay earning the crown. After winning the title Diamond revealed, “I’m pretty excited about winning, Everyone put a lot of work and dedication into the whole process, and it’s great that everything turned out really well. I’m glad that my friends and family were here to witness this.” EL TORO


Drama club dedication By Najee Edwards Drama Club provides a place for students who wish to do what they love while making new friends who share similar interests. Dedicated students of drama club have close bonds with each other. Sabrina Acosta, ‘13, says, “We get so close as we spend all of our rehearsal time together. It’s hard not to form some sort of bond.” Sabrina continues, “We stick up for one another and are always there for each other no matter what, even if it’s just lending a shoulder to cry on.” Austin Baran, ‘13,

agrees with Sabrina and says, “We are very much like a family. We show that by the consistent time we spend together before, during, and after school working on our current shows or performances.” He also states, “Although we may struggle with arguments, just like any other family would, there’s nothing I wouldn’t do to help them.” It’s quite evident that the Drama Club is more than just a club on campus. It’s a group of dedicated and compassionate students who are given the chance to do what they love with others who hold the same passion.


FAMILY AWAY FROM HOME Members of the drama club meet before school, during lunch,

and after school to prepare for performances. A family-like bond helps to keep all members in sync.

Do you like to sing? Many teenagers love singing just for fun while others actually want to make it their career. Julyssa Perez, ‘16, says “I love singing. It just gets me in a good mood when I’m down.” When asked about how well she thinks she sings on a scale of one to ten, Julyssa comments, “I think I’m a ten! Watch out, I’m the next Adele!” She adds by saying, “If I’m ever doing homework, taking a shower, or when I’m just bored, I start singing a song and I’ll get all into it.” Although Julyssa states that she thinks of her voice as her own instrument, she prefers not to sing in front of others. Future rapper, Josh Pulido, ‘16, mentioned his love of music “I’ve actually produced two songs which can be found on Sound Cloud.” Josh continues by talking about his interest in music and rapping. “It just became something I’d do for fun or during my free time. I later started to want to do it for a living in hopes of getting famous.” Josh states that he gains inf luences for his songs from his own personal life. Along with Josh, Isatou Gaye, ‘16, also has a passion for singing. “I’ve always liked to sing. Actually, I believe I’m pretty good. When I was little, I’d sing popular hit songs of the time.” To present her talent in singing, Isatou had participated in the talent show during elementary school. In middle school, she had been in choir and had received solos various times. “Singing has always been a part of my life. This year, I am taking the music appreciation class.” Although many students of La Mirada enjoy singing, not all of them think of themselves as the best singers. Mostafa Yousef, ‘14, says, “I don’t think I’m a great singer, but I don’t really care. I just like to sing for fun.” One of his favorite radio stations is 93.5, which mainly features hip-hop. Many students of La Mirada High School have expressed their interests in music and singing. Nearly everyone loves to sing, whether it is for fun or for a possible singing career in the near future.

El Toro


LOW KEY Pictured with her art work the multi-talented singer, artist, and muscisian, Vashti

Navarro, ‘13, decidely chooses to keep a low key perfering to perform in cafes and church events.

Multi-talented Navarro inspires By Erica Varela With her indie-style singing and magnificent voice, Vashti Navarro is sure to attract the ears of many. As a current senior at La Mirada High School, Vashti showcased her talent at last year’s talent show, placing third. She sang “The Show” by Lenka and her own

rendition of “Thinking of You” by Frank Ocean. Vashti shared her passion and purpose of singing, “If you can sing a few words out to give someone hope, why not do it?”. Not everyone has what it takes to be a singer as singing requires challenging vocal discipline. Vashti explains what she does before singing in order to make sure


her voice is in tiptop shape. You can tell she draws from “I practice many times before her heart.” Although Vashti’s performing and I drink tea voice may be big, what’s bigger with honey to help sooth my is the inspiration that she gives throat.” When standing up in to people through her music. front of a crowd, many people “Vashti’s singing takes me to feel butterflies in their stom- another universe. Not only is it achs. Stage fright is actually beautiful, but it also makes me common among most sing- feel beautiful,” says Andrew ers and performers, including Dominguez, ’13. Being an inVashti. “I definitely have stage spiration and idol to her peers fright,” Vashti admits. “I think can be a lot of strain. However, most people do even after Vashti carries herself with great years of singing. It’s just that poise as she navigates her way others cover it very well.” As through high school. So, who for her own struggle with stage inspires the inspirational Vashfright, she says, “I haven’t yet ti? “There are a few people that officially overcome that fear. inspire me to sing- my dad, my boyfriend, But usually havKris, and ing confidence “I do write my own lyrics; mostly God.” and putting fear usually what inspires me Vashti claims aside help overthat her singcome it.” Vash- is when I’m going through ti finds herself different paths in life. Some- ing talent is in her blood. singing in vari“My dad, ous places, but times I may be heartbroken my brother, has a place in or at other times I feel which she en- inspired and want to inspire and a few of my cousins joys singing the are singers.” most. “Usually others.” It seems as it’s in my room when no one is -Vashti Navarro ‘13 though Vashti has stumbled home. My voice upon greatcan crack and no one will ever know.” Vash- ness when she found out she, ti has multiple talents, from too, could also sing. “I’ve alsinging a wide range of songs ways appreciated a good voice. to writing her own lyrics. She When I was in the 7th grade, writes her lyrics based on her I’ve tried imitating good singpersonal experiences. “I do ers. When I realized that I write my own lyrics. Usually wasn’t too bad, I’ve tried to imwhat inspires me is when I’m prove from there.” Although going through different paths Vashti is filled with many worin life. Sometimes, I may be thy talents and abilities, don’t heartbroken, or at other times, expect to see her name on I feel inspired and want to in- headlines any time soon. She fluence others.” Vashti can also expresses that she would rather play various instruments. “I’ve stay low key.” I haven’t yet deplayed the drums, guitar, pi- cided. Maybe I’ll sing at a few ano, violin, and the djembe.” cafe gatherings or at church Along with her musical tal- events. As for becoming big, ents, Vashti has artistic abil- I’d rather prefer not.” Whethities as well. Fellow students er it be through her music or have praised her art works. her art, it is quite doubtless Melissa Valenciano, ’13, states, that Vashti has a bright future “Her art work is very realistic. ahead of her.

Commonality found within individualism By Chelsea Hepponstall Personal hobbies and interests determine how an individual creates his or her individuality. Also, various aspects of an individual also determine how he or she can play a role to the greater community or population. Throughout their four years of high school, students join clubs and activities that reflect what they are most passionate about or interested in. Various clubs on campus such as Key Club, Baking Club, and Calculus Club are a few of the samplings students can choose to join. Many students may even choose to join multiple clubs if they have many interests. Whether it be academic, volunteer-based, or just plain fun, students have the chance to interact over something that they share in common. One of the many clubs on campus is Link Crew. Link Crew is specially made to guide freshman students as they enter high school. Upperclassmen help these students to create bonds among their own class and with those in upper levels. Tanner Oertel, ’13, a Link Crew Leader, states that he joined Link Crew because, “high school can be difficult at times and [he] wanted to make [himself] available for those who struggle with adapting to the much more diverse atmosphere, especially during their first year”. Link Crew not only helps freshmen, but also brings together students who are interested in lending out a helping hand to others. Tanner explains, “I’ve made many friends in Link Crew, both with underclassmen and fellow leaders. It’s definite-

ly a bonding experience among all of the leaders. We tell each other about our experiences with our Link Crew kids and bond over our similarities and desires to help others.” Meredith Orozco, ’13 also a Link Crew Leader, provides her reasoning by explaining, “My leaders really helped me through freshman year and I wanted to do the same with my own group of freshmen.” Another club that seeks to support is Gay Straight Alliance. G.S.A. works to create a bonding atmosphere with students by accepting them for who they are. Yadira Gallegos, ’13, assures, “G.S.A. is a place where I’m safe to be myself. It’s a safe environment where no one is judged or harassed and it’s a lot of fun too.” G.S.A. strives to be non-biased by letting all members express themselves without any preconceptions of the outside world. Onesimo Rodriguez, ’14, “Everyone is welcoming, and it was instant friendship since the beginning.” Larissa Woodley,’ 14 explains the reasoning behind why she joined by saying, “It seemed interesting and the people in charge seemed really cool and considerate.” Link Crew, GSA, and Drama Club are just a few out of the many clubs that are located on campus for students to get involved. These clubs and extracurricular activities give students chances to find what they are most passionate about and to express themselves. Most importantly, however, they give opportunities to bond with people who share the same interests. These bonds may even create friendships, which are sure to make memories, both outside and after high school.

January 28, 2013


Jaimes to play New York’s renowned Carnegie Hall By Chelsea Hepponstall Carnegie Hall, New York, a place that receives the utmost attention from performers and musicians alike. Famous icons such as Billie Holiday, David Bowie, and The Beatles to cultural icons such as Martin Luther King Jr. have all had their place on the renowned stage once upon a time. And now as the twenty first century takes the spotlight, new faces come into play. Matthew Jaimes, ’14, will soon be walking in the presence of these figures, and making his own name for future performers to remember. He will be playing the French horn with the High School Honors Performance Association ensemble of which he says, “At first I thought I would get into this ensemble, but then I sent in a recording thinking I would just try it, and then I actually got accepted which I’m really excited about. Another thing is in this ensemble there are only eight French horns. So out of all the hundreds of thousands horn players in the country, I’m in the top eight in high school.” Along with that he’s also involved in, “two youth orchestras, which are regional from orange county and LA. One is based in Orange County and Irvine. Those are just some of my favorite places to play. I just love it.” Besides French horn, Matthew also lets everyone know that he does have other pastimes explaining, “I do like a golf a little bit. I go golfing every Monday with my dad, which is pretty fun for me. I also really like philosophy.” Although very talented and extremely gifted, Matthew is just like any other normal kid doing chores and scheduling time to balance out school with music. The most important thing is dedication to his passions. He will be performing with his ensemble on February 10th in Carnegie Hall where he will etch his name among the great performers of the past.

El Toro

(SGVN/Staff Photo by Leo Jarzomb/SWCITY)

06 COMMUNITY January 28, 2013




CIVIC LEADERS Youth In Government participants pose in the atrium of the La Mirada Theater for the Performing Arts after a city sponsored DECISION MAKERS Priscilla Lee, ’13 and Sam Khattar, ’13 review proposals. Matthew

luncheon. Each student mirrors their counterpart within the city government and works within the assigned role during meetings.

Alvarez, ‘13, briefs Principal Bill Seals on proposals for the February 26th meeting.

Youth in Government leaders luncheon By Matthew Alvarez Youth in Government was established 53 years ago, as the brainchild of the city and NLMUSD. The overall purpose of the program is to increase the civic engagement among teens. Last week the city invited members of Y.I.G. to a luncheon with their city counterparts. Currently Mr. John Browns, Social Science, is the advisor

of Youth in Government. Mr. Browns decided to advise the program three years ago, “I have always had an interest in government, and the Y.I.G. program really allows students to see the real workings of government on the city level. Coordinating on behalf of the city and working with the student leaders are Vaniah De Rojas and Oliver Osuna. Osuna is now in his fith year coordinating Y.I.G.. According to Osuna,

Youth in Government benefits the city, “The benefit to the city is we get out-of-the-box ideas from the students, we also sometimes get proposals from students on ideas the city was holding off on because we weren’t sure if there was community support for the idea”. Studnets participating in Y.I.G elect four students as council members and one student as mayor. Other members represent

key positions within the city government such as the Sheriff or the Battalion Chief. Youth in Government members devise two proposals and present both during an official city council meeting. The city council considers the proposals and may or may not act upon them. Overall, Youth in Government creates real-life ledaership experience for students genuinely interested in city government. This year the council is com-

posed of Priscilla Lee, Brian Hanst, Janice Jang, Mauricio Pavano, Kevin Lim, Olivia Tang, Justin Rhee, Mark Sologuren, Sam Khattar, Marina Alvarez, Ryan Cooper, Vanessa Ramirez, Breanne Flores, Brandon Eng, Madeleine Rodriguez, Krista Seitz, Sarah Khattar, Eric Rhee, Zitlanlyc Garcia, Bryan Alvarado, Nathan Decker, and Matthew Alvarez.

Winter merriment over break

By Alondra Torres

Winter recess provided the opportunity for students to engage in Winter fun with friends and family. Although some students rail against the cold, some relish the opportunity to head up to the local mountains. Bryce Parent, ’14, loves Winter not only because it is cold but because there is are many activities for him and his friends. For many a trip to local winter wonderland, Big Bear, tops the list of Winter recess fun. For Mr. Opper, Math Department Chair, and his son Brandon Quezada, ’15, Big Bear is a family tradition.

What makes living and attending school in Southern California is that winter snow doesn’t affect Angelenos. We have to travel a short hour to reach beautiful snow laden mountains. Take for example this past weekend, temperatures were near 90 degrees and many students flocked to the San Bernardino Mountains for a quick escape. Students and teachers prepare themselves for Winter recess in many different ways. Students prepare themselves by buying warm clothes, making sure they get all their school work done so they can relax during the break, buying Christmas presents, decorat-

ing their houses, and leaving their best outfits for the holidays. Teachers seem to be glad for any break. Mr. Opper expressed that winter is fun and expensive because every winter he spends about $500. About $100 in Big Bear, $100 going out to eat, and $100 in snowboarding and about $300 in Christmas presents. For those still looking to spend some time and some money in our local mountains, there are a few choice locations to check out for snowboarding. Mountain High and Snow Summit are operating with full runs and snowboard parks open. Don’t forget to check on-line for student discounts.

City of La Mirada: Dedicated to Service

By Alexandria Sun Did you know that the city of La Mirada has a motto? As a community we are committed to service through dedication. “Dedicated to Service” has been the motto of our city for years. The La Mirada Community Foundation supports most of the service projects and activities within the city limits. Most notably, the foundation dedicates resources to the 4 La Mirada Kids Golf Tournament and an event most students attend

the 4 La Mirada Kids Carnival held every April at Benton Middle school. The Community Foundation also services students who are dedicated to service through scholarship. The foundation offers the Bob Jenkins scholarship and the Ray Haugh vocational scholarship. Both scholarships are awarded during the Senior Tea Awards ceremony in June. Julie Garrison, La Mirada resident and mother of two explained how she sees dedication work for our community, “Yes, I have lived in La Mirada for

over twenty years and I have never had a problem with the environment surrounding me and they seem to be on top of things”. Kiana Escobar, ‘13 was asked her how we as a community can live by La Mirada’s motto and she stated “I think if we help each other out and be kind to one another it would be hard not to live by La Mirada’s motto”. If you are interested in volunteering on campus and living the motto, contact an A.S.B. representative.


SNOW PATROL LMHS alumni Daisy and Alisha Ruiz spend their winter break at local snow play haven, Mountain High resort. Like many students, the girls spend break with family and friends

EDITORIAL/OPINION January 28, 2013 07

El Toro

EDITORS IN CHIEF Janice Jang Chelsea Hepponstall


Academics Editor Ana Sanchez

ATHLETICS EDITORS Bre Flores Kenny Mc Elroy



NEWS EDITOR Madeleine Rodriguez



El Toro Staff Matthew Alvarez, Danielle Chavez, Alexandra Delgadillo, Andrew Dominguez, Najee Edwards-Bates, Breanne Flores, Kasandra Fortin, Chelsea Hepponstall, Janice Jang, Hye Kang, Jackie Leeder,Jonathan Lopez, Kenneth Mc Elroy, Krystal Meek, Brandon Nicholoff, Christine Orozco, Victoria Quezada, Sara Ramirez, Jesse Reese, Madeleine Rodriguez, Anthony Salgado, Ana Sanchez, Chelsey Shrubb, Amy Sotelo-Tamariz, Alexandria Sun, Alondra Torres, Alexandria Van Zuilen, Erica Varela, Devon White, Mostafa Yousef, Karina Zaragoza

Advisor Mr. John Alvarez El Toro dedicates itself to producing a high-quality publication that both informs and entertains the entire student body. This is a wholly student managed, designed, and written newspaper that focuses on school and community events. El Toro is a student newspaper published monthly. La Mirada High School, 13520 Adelfa Drive, La Mirada, California, 90638 Telephone (562) 868-0431 ext. 3170.

Contact El Toro El Toro Newspaper 13520 Adelfa Drive La Mirada, CA 90638

By Andrew Dominguez As a lot of you may know, the company, Hostess, has recently gone out of business, bringing an end to the distribution of many favored snacks such as Twinkies, Ding Dongs, Cupcakes and even Wonder Bread. Recently, students have expressed their feelings and opinions of Hostess going under. When asked what he

would do with the last box of his favorite Hostess snack, Ricky Cobian, ’13, states “I would eat all of the Cupcakes and then throw up, so that I could taste them twice.” Genesis Gonzalez, ’16, responds by saying, “My favorite snack is Twinkies and I would eat the last box by myself.” Gaby Saenz, ’13, also commented on her love for the company’s product, Ho Ho’s. Although many students love

Hostess snacks and though they will surely be missed, Josh Cervantes, ’13, contrarily states, “I don’t like Hostess snacks and if I had the last box, I would sell it.” Other students have shared his opinion. However, even those students, who do not treasure Hostess snacks, still have fond memories with them. For example, Kelani Sun, ’16, recalls a time she shared with her old-

er sister. “I remember one time, my sister was holding a Twinkie and she squeezed it so hard and sprayed the cream all over my face.” Though you could love or hate them, you cannot deny the fact that Hostess has had a huge impact on pop culture and diet. Perhaps, the Hostess snack that you have enjoyed the most will make a triumphant return to store shelves.

Mike’s and Tom’s Tailgate offer tasty choices By Brandon Nicholoff Although there are many places to eat around in the city of La Mirada, nothing beats the classics, such as Mike’s Burgers. If you live in La Mirada, you must have had the chance to eat at this fine burger establishment at least once. If you haven’t and are currently living in the city, what are you waiting for? People all over La Mirada cannot get enough of Mike’s delicious food. In recent months, another amazing food joint just right across the street from Mike’s has been gaining attention. Although not too many people know about it, those who do cannot stop raving about it. This new and exciting food joint is called Tom’s Tailgate Mexican Grill. Everyone who has been to Tom’s says that you have to try the burritos, nachos or the chips. Both food joints have amazing prices for the quality of the food.

However, let’s see what others think about them. When asked about the quality of Mike’s, Mark Garcia, ’14, says, “I have always loved Mike’s and their famous burgers.” Devon White, ’13, adds on by saying, “I’ve been going to Mike’s Burgers ever since I could remember, and it seems like it just keeps getting better and better.” Although you’re probably already agreeing with these two gentlemen, their similar opinions do not end there. Next, when asked about how often she goes to Mike’s, Lauren Klement, ’13, says, “I go to Mike’s Burgers every late start with my friends because I can’t get enough of their amazing breakfast burritos.” There are many others who stop by Mike’s every late start to grab their favorite breakfast. Ronnie Occhipinti, ’13, was asked what his favorite food was from Mike’s. He responds by saying, “Every time I go to Mike’s I have to get their bacon cheese burger.

I could eat one of those every day for the rest of my life.” Adding onto Ronnie’s positive feedback, Kyle Ramirez, ’13, comments, “Even though I live far from Mike’s, it will never get old and I have even considered moving to be closer to all the action.” As you can see, so many people love the quality and food of Mike’s Burgers. Next time you’re confused on which best quality burger to get, make it a Mike’s burger. Now it’s time to find out what the students of La Mirada think of the new joint on the block. Tom’s Tailgate is known for its amazing quality of burritos and nachos. Ronnie comments on his favorite food from Tom’s as he says, “The six dollar burrito never fails to disappoint.” Many students have been choosing to eat at Tom’s whenever they get the chance. Mark adds, “I have to go there at least three times a week. I would go every single day if I could!” Peo-

“I go to Mike’s Burgers every late start with my friends because I can’t get enough of Mike’s amazing breakfast burritos.” -Lauren Klement ‘13

ple are enjoying Tom’s for its quality of food as well as its prices. Kyle says, “I love the nachos because it’s the most I’ve ever gotten for the price.” Both places are equally amazing with food and prices; however, it all comes down to what you’re in the mood for. Me? I would go to Mike’s for breakfast then go straight to Tom’s Tailgate after school to grab one of those amazing burritos that everyone can’t get enough of.

New year’s resolutions

By Chelsea Shrubb

It’s a new year, a time for change. Have you decided on what changes you want to make this year? Many people find themselves stressing over their new resolutions. Are you one of these people? Hector Diaz, ’15 and Nicole Rosiles,’16 both agree that making a resolution with friend can help encourage you to stay committed to your goals that you want to achieve. Hector says he and his friend Your celebrating a new year, but, did you believe the world would end on December 21st?

Yes, I was terrified. Yes, I had R.E.M. on repeat. No, the Mayans were terrible at math. No, because 2013 will be my year!

I plan on giving back to my community

By volunteering 5 hours. By volunteering 25 hours. By volunteering more than 50 hours. Till they call me Mother Theresa.

made a resolution to get better grades. “We plan to study hard finish all of our homework, and do all extra credit assignments.” Nicole Continued that she would like to lose a little bit of weight to get in shape for gymnastics. “ I plan on eating right and going on a run whenever I have free time.” Girls on her gymnastics team also have the same goal and plan to help her strive to reach her desired weight. Other students of La Mirada


Editorial Policy The editorial content of El Toro expresses the views of the newspaper and not necessarily of the administration, faculty, staff, or the NLMUSD. Bylined editorial content is the writer’s opinion and not necessarily of the administration, faculty, staff, or the NLMUSD. If you believe an error has been made or wish to have your opinion expressed in El Toro, please contact us via mail or email. Letters sent become the sole property of El Toro and can be edited for length, clarity, or accuracy. El Toro editorial board reserves the right to accept or reject any ad in accordance with its advertising policy.

What would you do with the last Twinkie?


Toro El

High School have made different resolutions. Elias Robles, ’16, Dion Almuena, ’16, and Nestor Guerrero, ’16 all say that they want to improve in their sport. They all have expressed their goals to make it onto junior varsity or varsity. Their goals have bee encouraging them to stay committed as athletes. Nester says, “I have two major resolutions for this year; to get straight A’s and to improve my soccer skills.” Elias plans to improve on his kick

How often do you work out?

As much as LMFAO. Once a week. 6 days a week if you count shopping. Till I’m bigger than Chuck Norris. What are you looking forward to this year?

Going to college in the fall. The next Hunger Games release. A new, terrible MTV reality show. An app more fun then “Fun Run”.

for football while Dion says he would like to improve in basketball. Whether it is to encourage your friends or to better yourselves in your sports or activities, you should try to set high goals for 2013. You can always gain support from others around you to help you strive to reach your goals. With enough determination and support, we can all be successful with our new year’s resolutions.


As 2013 rolls on, and only 48 weeks left, how are you doing in keeping your res-




# of remainingweeksin2013

48 weeks

olution? If your like most students, you are keeping strong to your commitment. I resolve to with my friends in 2013. I promise to with my family this year. I will work to do better in class and earn a grade.


El Toro

January 28, 2013



POINTS IN THE PAINT Jared Davis, ‘13, drives to the basket against a Mayfair defender. The

Monsoons were effective in limiting the Matadors’ points in the paint thus controlling the game.

One more shot By Bre Flores La Mirada High School’s Varsity Basketball team was looking dangerously good and intimidating, this season. With their 3-1 record, they appeared to be a team to be reckoned with. Thus far, playing against three teams: Bellflower, Cerritos and Glenn High School taking the win for all. Despite having starting junior guard, Taelin Webb out for the sea-

son, the boys have well established themselves. We asked Sammy Alarcon if he felt threatened now against Mayfair High School, La Mirada’s biggest rival with a missing key player. “It has been a big hit on the team, but it is going to show what this team is really capable of. We are going to continue playing our best and win the ring this year for him. ” One of the games La Mirada always prepares extra for is

our rivalry team, the Mayfair High School Monsoons. We asked Samy Alarcon how his team prepared for this rivalry match as a whole. He responded, “ we always practice just as hard for any team but we knew this was an important game for the school and we don’t want to disappoint the school…” Unfortunately, the Matadors fought a physically, mentally and emotionally draining battle against Mayfair on January 12th, resulting in a score of 54-44, Mayfair. The boys were extremely disappointed but recognized the fact that they did their best and gave it their all. The student body’s school spirit was unbelievable the night of the game and had a huge impact on the players. Deion Golfin told us his response to the crowd, “I feel the crowd’s spirit is what made that game so interesting and made us so pumped along with the Mayfair being LM’s top rival and it was amazing to have a crowd like that because the basketball team has had the crowd respond in that way since the Derrick Williams Era but it was just unfortunate that we couldn’t turn out with a win with all the school spirit that was in the gym. Although La Mirada is a small city, we are a big family.” La Mirada High School’s Boys Varsity Basketball team continues on into League with a 3-1 record.

League title on the horizon

By Kenny Mc Elroy

This year, the girls’ varsity soccer team is looking dangerously good. The talk around the school is that they are a talented team to be reckoned with. The girls have proven themselves with their undefeated 3-0 record. When asked if the team was ready for the school rivalry game, Sam Scovel answers, “We’re always ready to play Mayfair. Since they are the school’s rival, everyone is ready for them.” She continued by saying, “My coach is also ready! He has already prepared speeches and pep-talks to pump us up.” The girls have worked extremely hard by eating right, practicing endlessly and training to prepare for this game. In order to win, the girls must face not only a physical battle, but also a mental and emotional struggle as well. They must play as one in order to conquer the Mayfair Monsoons. The game took place on Friday, January 11th. The girls of the varsity soccer squad had an amazing 2-1 victory against the Monsoons. Currently the team owns an undefeated record of 6-0, placing them that much closer to once again acquiring another league title.


ATTITUDE CHECK Second year Varsity Captain Denisha Galvez, ‘13, stands committed.

Girls’ Varsity Soccer Schedule Dec 27-2North Orange Co. Tournament Jan 2 Bellflower Jan 4 Cerritos Jan 7 John Glenn Jan 11 Mayfair Jan 16 Artesia Jan 18 Norwalk Jan 23 John Glenn Jan 25 Cerritos Jan 28 Bellflower Jan 30 Artesia Feb 1 Norwalk Mar 7 Mayfair




Boys Basketball


Girls Basketball

Suburban League title still with- Head coach, Mc Carthy takes in reach of varsity team pride in varsity players’ effort On January 18th the boys varsity basketball team held on to beat the visiting Norwalk Lancers. At halftime the Matadors were up 27 - 16. The boys won the third quarter, and the tension and possible league title was on the line during the fourth quarter when the matadors failed to score. Norwalk put up 14 points in the final quarter. With a sense of urgency, the boys defense stiffened and were victorious 39 - 38 final. On Thursday evening the Matadors routed the Glenn Eagles 81 -31 behind game leading scorer Tyler Paynes 14 points.

-Bree Flores

The 2012-2013 season for the Girls Varsity Basketball season has been really good. With their current record at 2-3 for the league, Coach McCarthy is very proud of her team. Revealing, “Everyone has been playing really well, especially our center Alexandria Van Zuilen ’13, who has been averaging 25 points per game.“ After their last game against Artesia she reveals, “The team was playing really hard, beating Artesia 63-26.“After winning against La Serna which hasn’t happened over the last four seasons, McCarthy is hoping for the team to go really far.

-Christine Orozco

4-5-1 Boys Soccer

8-3-3 Girls Soccer


Boys look to bounce back from difficult league losses.

Recent wins propel team towards end of season showdown

Varsity wrestlers dominate in two league wins

The La Mirada boys varsity soccer team had a difficult loss against Mayfair on Friday, January 11 with a score of 0-1 Mayfair. During the first half of the match Jordan Mayberry had lurked the ball at half field and had a break away at the goal, but the defense-man challenged the ball and took it back at the 18 yard line. Varsity player, Nicholas Lavoi, ’13 stated, “Every team no matter what sport has their bad games, but for us that’s not going to stop us from having a good season and keep on fighting for those wins. We practice with hard work and dedication and play with our all during a game”.

The La Mirada Girls’ Varsity Soccer team notched another two victories since beating rival Mayfair. The girls’ varsity soccer played the visiting Artesia Pioneers on Wednesday January 16th, winning 2-0. On Friday January 18th the girls’ traveled to Norwalk defending a league undefeated record against a lancer team coming off a tie with Glenn. La Mirada was once again victorious. Next up for the Lady Matadors are the Bellflower Dons. The Varsity soccer team has allowed only three points thus far in league play.

This past week varsity wrestling posted dominating wins over the Cerritos Dons and the Artesia Pioneers. Varsity is 3-1 in Suburban League competition. On Saturday Alex Powers, ’14, and Coach Miguel Munoz, ’14, placed third in the Troy tournament. Varsity coach Lipeles states that he is very proud of the progress that his team has been making, “As wrestlers, they should have the mindset of getting a win in the league, placing at C.I.F., or competing at Masters. At La Mirada High, our wrestlers’ top priorities should be dedication to the team, their scholastics, and their family.”

-Victoria Quezada

-Krystal Meek


-Amy Sotelo

El Toro January  

The El Toro is the student newspaper of La Mirada High School

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