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the Parish Episcopal News

cyrus ghazanvi alex fine

vol. VI issue 1 | august 2010 | 4101 sigma rd., dallas tx, 75244

llread read about their summer journeys page 8 - 9

editor-in-chief MEREDITH CAREY managing editor MICHAEL WILSON managing editor TEHJAL SURI opinion editor SHELBY KLING design editor JASMINE FLOWERS entertainment editor ALEX FINE news editor CATHERINE STACK contributors ADITYA RAJAN TEAL COOPER PRESTON HARRISON MADISON VAN DE HEY DANIEL PAPPAS ZANDER MAPES SARAH ROSENBERG adviser DEBBIE POCHMANN As a student-produced high school newsmagazine, The PEN seeks to highlight notable students, faculty and events within and around the Parish community. The PEN strives to inspire the Parish community through dynamic subject matter and innovative style, through both print editions and an online supplement, newsfromthepen. com. An editorial without a byline reflects the opinion of The PEN, while an editorial or column including a byline represents that of the credited author. Neither necessarily echoes the viewpoint of the Parish community. By way of its standards, The PEN aspires to embody the Parish mission, “wisdom, honor, service.” The PEN welcomes all contributions. Submissions should be sent to or delivered to the journalism office, 4042.

parish v. esd

pete’s perspective

sarah rosenberg contributor

Pete’s Perspective ranks Parish activities, student style and things-about-town on a scale from one paw to five paws, one paw representing a low opinion and five paws reflecting a high opinion.

changes in the cafeteria From the layout of the room to healthier food choices, the cafeteria has been the site of change. To alleviate crowding in the lunch line area, the center wall was removed. Unfortunately, lines of hungry students still wind into the sandwich and hot foods areas. Some healthier food additions have not caught on, although the pork tenderloin and chicken Caesar wraps have been big hits. Students miss staples such as the baked potato bar. Tastier choices and faster moving lines--we’ve seen some progress and hope to see more. painted parking spaces Shelby Kling, Fallon Schneider and Caroline Schreiber are blazing bright trails in the parking lot. They won the opportunity last year at Gala last year to paint their own parking spaces. We’d like to seen this extended to all seniors. This would be an epic privilege. group ons E-mail coupons sound like inbox spam or something only your mom would love, but Groupons are not your average money-saver. Groupon subscribers receive emails offering deals on restaurants, activities and services. For example, Groupon recently offered $50 in Gap purchases for $25. Groupons come with a hitch--a minimum number of people must accept an offer for it to be effective. If someone buys the deal but too few people participate, they get a refund. Groupons are a great way to save money.


parish news At the Bishop’s Cup on August 27, Parish crushed the ESD Eagles 49 to 0. Before a home crowd that included veteran NFL sports announcer Pat Summerall and 1987 Heismann trophy winner “Mr. Raider” Tim Brown, the Panthers launched their season with ferocity. Parish Sophomore QB Dru Smith passed for a resounding 304 yards. Left, Eugene Lockhart rushes the ESD quarterback. | 2

Freshmen tour upper school with student government representatives Preston Harrison ‘13 and Michael Murph ‘13.

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Sixth-graders gather peanut butter at the Hillcrest campus for the North Texas Food Bank. They spoke in chapel at Midway and perfomed during half-time at the ESD vs. Parish game.

more than your average dinner and a movie meredith carey editor-in-chief

Scavenger hunts aren’t just for second-graders anymore. It doesn’t take much, just a camera, friends, a map and some initiative, to turn a boring evening into a wild night out. Recently I joined some friends in downtown Dallas to celebrate a friend’s 18th birthday. We searched for cars with expired parking meters, horse-drawn carriages and local landmarks. I’ve never had so much fun jumping into other people’s photos or asking a stranger wearing a cowboy hat to pose with me. Planning a scavenger hunt is easy. Split up into teams, map out an area and compile a list of objects, people and landmarks to find. Equip each team with a camera, a map and the list of items and off you go! Deciding the hunted items is the fun part. They can be anything from balloons to people riding motorcycles, from waving limo drivers to someone wearing a Cowboys jersey. Consider enlisting your mom, your neighbor or another friend to compile the list, so you can join in on the fun. And, since most people have video capability on their cell phones and cameras, throw a video component into the hunt. Ask a stranger to dance. Shake everyone’s hand who passes by. Ask someone to sing a popular song. Do a cartwheel in a public place. High five an old person. Scavenger hunts make more than just fun outings, they make memories. So next time you’re sitting at home wondering what you‘re going to do this weekend, grab a map and some friends and head out. The world awaits.


ts style


catherine stack checks out new spirit wear at the PAWS store with PEN staffers junior sarah rosenberg (above middle and bo om le ), sophomore madison vandehey (bo om le ), junior teal cooper (bo om middle) and junior andi wilson (top le ) and freshman jack noble (top right) | 3

taking to new heights monaco reflects on his first 15 months

zander mapes contributer Dave Monaco is no longer the new Head of School, at least not in his mind. He’s been at Parish 15 months too long for that to still be true. Instead, he says he’s just “one component . . . a servant leader,” here to serve Parish, its students, faculty and staff, and to forge a path for the school’s growth. Mr. Monaco believes we are the future. He believes that the students of Parish and their peers are going to change the face of the job market within a global spectrum. With this belief, says Mr. Monaco, comes the need to engrave a philosophy of sorts within the student body. Because of how easy it is to obtain information in this digital age, he says it is no longer “what you learn, in terms of facts . . . but what is much more important is what you’re doing with what you know, how you demonstrate what you know.” Mr. Monaco hopes to convey this thought with his “Four C’s” teaching philosophy– collaboration, communication, critical thinking and creativity. These are the skills that he believes prepare students for involvement in the global world and equips them with those base skills needed to survive in a world where little is hidden and out of reach. Mr. Monaco wants Parish to be the best Parish it can be. Over the next five years, he hopes to establish a leadership institute, a program to give students experience and unique recognition for their leadership roles in the community. He also wants to expand Parish’s global studies program, which includes the introduction of international orientation and community service. He envisions co-curricular activities such as forensics and debate in an international environment, along with the introduction of a world affairs council. This international project already has a basis in the Parish community, with two foreign exchange students who studied here during the past couple of years and the continued communication with these students. As Mr. Monaco drops the title of new head of school, he picks up the informal title of project front man. He holds high hopes for the future of Parish, the student body and upcoming graduates, but it’s not solely in his power. It requires the collaboration of faculty, staff and students, communication between all those involved in Parish and its legacy, critical thinking for the advancement of the school and, finally, creativity to take it to new heights. | 4

faculty freshmen dr. kelly jameson What was your favorite part of high school? NFL player Shaun Alexander was in my class at Boone County High School, so we could get 10,000 people at our home games just to see him play. It was incredible.

mrs. debbie pochmann What is your guilty pleasure? I have a strange attraction to any of the Real Housewives reality series. I think I watch them because they make me feel nearly normal.

mr. adam johnson What is your favorite knock-knock joke? Knock knock. Who’s there? Phillip. Philip who? Phillip my bag with candy!

mrs. lynn benyo If you could live in any house on a television series, which would it be? Magnum P.I. because it takes place in Hawaii!

mrs. jeannette manning What has been your favorite job? I worked for the federal government. It was a blast—I loved it.

{rising to the top}

charles cook dominates both on the turf and in the classroom michael wilson managing editor


What was your motivation to get started in football?


I first started football in the fifth grade, my first year at Parish. My parents asked me if I wanted to play and both James and I rejected the idea at first. My parents made me go to this two-week football camp during the summer so that we could at least meet some kids at Parish. During the camp Coach Nady emphasized that we should never quit no matter what it was. He said that if we started to eat a bowl of soup, we must not leave the dinner table until that soup was gone. So, by the end of the camp, when the shoulder pads were handed out, there was no turning back.

Q: What are your long-term goals in football? A: I would love to have the opportunity to play football at the collegiate level. Q: What has been your favorite game and why? A: Prestonwood last year at their place during the regular season because it was probably one of the best games I have ever played. It is always nice to beat your biggest rival on their field in front of their fans.

Q: What is your ritual before a game? A: When I wake up every Friday, before I leave for school, I bang the “PLAY LIKE A CHAMPION TODAY� sign hanging by my door. By the way, the one game I forgot to do this, we lost.

Q: What role did family play in your life as a foot ball player? A: My family has never missed a football game in my life. Even my grandparents come to most of my games, which really means a lot to me. | 5

the untold sisterhood shelby kling opinions editor When the upper school advisories moved from multi-grade to single-grade in the fall of 2009, some people were upset. Freshmen enjoyed having older students from whom to receive advice, and seniors liked having younger students to regale with stories of the horrors of upperclassmen life. For most, however, the single-grade advisories have worked out well. Freshmen don’t have to be annoyed with announcements about senior privileges and groups of students who usually don’t eat lunch together have time to hang out for twenty minutes a day. The switch from multi-grade advisories worked out fine, but who would want to switch to a singlesex advisory? Eleven senior girls, it turns out. After freshmen year, their adviser, a new teacher who transferred from Hockaday, decided that having guys in her advisory was too difficult to handle. The the three guys decided to transfer out. The girls asked to stay as an all-girl advisory and, when the original advisor left Parish after that summer, Ms. Fowler took over the task. The common misconception is that a group of girls is bound to spawn conflict. This sisterhood, however, hopes to correct that assumption. Toi Collins ’11, a member of the Fowler advisory, said that there are “never cat fights” and the girls are definitely “not gossipy.” Toi’s comments are entirely agreed upon within the advisory. Unlike some advisories, their bond doesn’t exist only during the allotted twenty minutes. The girls attend each other’s sporting events and sit together at lunch. Their connection is evident, even from an outside point of view. Mrs. Bernard is happy with the results of the trial run. She said, “[The

holly h.

taylor m.

randal r.

jasmine f.

maya r.

girls] form a close group. They can talk about samegender topics, which is a good thing.” Although she notes the successes of the advisory, she doesn’t believe it’s without weaknesses. She mentions that we don’t live in a single-gender world or even a single-gender school, so there are some drawbacks to thriving in an all-female advisory, such as less interaction and communication with the opposite sex. Ms. Fowler agrees that the all-girl advisory is a plus “because it allows the girls to be more open [about] themselves without having to worry about impressing or not sounding silly around the opposite sex.” She also enjoys the chemistry between the girls and thinks the addition of guys would be “detrimental because [the girls] have built a level of comfort and to add a guy would disturb the balance of the advisory.” The arrangement works perfectly for the Fowler advisory, but would other high school students put themselves in the same position? The unanimous answer is definitely not. From the male perspective, Andrew Mowrey ’11 notes that a dozen testosterone-filled bodies would create “way too much tension.” Even a group of four freshmen girls were unenthusiastic about the proposition, collectively muttering, “Um, no.” So why do the eleven girls feel like they hit the jackpot? The response from each was that the girls mesh really well. No one has a concrete answer as to why they don’t fight or engage in gossip. They just get along seamlessly. The girls think of themselves as a family. They are a perfect sisterhood.

mia g.

moriah p.

meredith c.

abby g.

toi c.

haley m.

art by esther kim | 6

high five for phase V michael wilson managing editor Upgrades ranging from new classrooms to an open space art gallery have Parish Panthers excited about the 2010-2011 school year. The renovations of the Midway campus that were completed this summer conclude the final stage of the building’s ten-year long retrofitting. Likewise, noteworthy summer work at the Hillcrest campus includes heating and cooling improvements, technological infrastructure changes and security enhancements. With such buzz around the community, I decided to get the real scoop from Head of School Dave Monaco himself. Mr. Monaco gave me an exclusive tour of the building and explained the planning and reasoning behind the improvements. First, Mr. Monaco directed me toward the open space art gallery. Prior to this addition, display of student art was limited to the Great Hall. As a result of the new gallery, art now can be showcased as never before. The school’s top paintings and drawings will be displayed on the walls of the softly lighted and temperature-controlled room on the second floor. Along with a new projector, the new gallery will significantly enhance the fine arts program. Second, I took a quick peek into the new art room and immediately felt as though I walked outside on a sunny day. Before I could check and see if I was still in the building, Mr. Monaco pointed to the brand new skylight. Aside from the structural elegance it brings to the space, skylights also allow natural light to flow inside. Believing that one should never judge a book by its cover, I asked a student artist if the adjustments to the room helped or hindered the class. Senior art student Katie Lewis explained, “The skylight improved my paintings because I can see colors clearer than I did with florescent lighting.” On the way to the third floor I could not help but ask Mr. Monaco why there

admiring the new skylight in the second floor art room

examining a blueprint in the newly-carpeted Great Hall

looking at borrowed tapestries in the art gallery

prac cing passes in the impressive varsity locker room || 77

were random red squares all over the floor of the Great Hall. Laughing, he explained that the squares “provide a trail toward the main exits.” So, for those like me who have the urge to step on every red square, now you know that it will eventually lead you to an exit. On the third leg of my tour, Mr. Monaco showed me the new location of the weight room. The state-of-the-art facility provides added space to serve more athletes. Although weights, equipment and thunderous cries from heavy lifters have stayed the same, the work ethic and efforts of the Parish athletes seem to have increased. Last, I visited the new varsity locker rooms. The rooms consist of personal lockers, separate showers and even hangers for snazzy blue blazers. Coaches marvel at the new whiteboard because plays or sets can be drawn prior to games in order to prepare for opposing teams. Since I could not enter the girl’s locker room, I asked a volleyball player what her thoughts were on the changes. Senior Cara Beasley exclaimed, “These are like new college locker rooms.” The added spaces have been in the works for some time now. The Board of Trustees and administration initiated the process in March and as part of Parish’s strategic planning. The Facilities Committee of the Board of Trustees will update the master plan of the campus next month. Mr. Monaco explained this plan will “present a roadmap for future facility additions [that] articulates the facility needs and dreams we have for the Hillcrest and Midway campuses.” Ultimately, these changes will enhance the learning experience for every student. The additions that Mr. Monaco showed me, along with other enhancements, continue to make Parish’s already distinguished facility even more remarkable.

college caravan

one senior’s cross-country mission to find the perfect college fit shelby kling opinions editor It all started with a trip. A trip to my visits tailored to my interests, and did mother’s alma mater, Sweet Briar Colcountless searches on Naviance. I came lege. I was in awe of the stylish girls liv- up with way too many results. Deing on their own, wowed by the school termined to look through them all, I colors of pink and green, infatuated saved searches by region. Based on my with their mascot, the vixen. Discount- determination that environment was ing the gorgeous landscape and perfect most important, I knew I could cut out Virginian weather, the sugary sweet the West, minus Hawaii and California, name was enough. I was in little girl and pretty much all of the middle of the heaven and set on Sweet Briar. U.S. I then, slowly, went through the As I got older, I realized there was lists, editing by quality of education, more to college than school colors and dorms, food, and weather. School colors a super-cute mascot. that compleI learned that Mom “The list shrank, slowly, mented my skin would not be going off tone and a unique but surely. It made its to college with me. No mascot became more home-cooked way down to 25, closer to welcome bonuses. meals or Tempur-Pedic Finally, I sucmy goal but still not small ceeded in creatmattress. Dorms and enough.” dining halls tied for ing a list of about the top spot on my list forty schools. of important features. Dorms had to Forty applications, however, would cost be large, bathrooms had to be pristine a fortune. Though I felt triumphant in and food had to be stellar. After all, my my successful whittling of the list, I motto is “Food is good.” was not even close to done. I looked at Five years ago, my brother began schools more carefully, inspecting their his college search and I really started to school profiles and looking at virtual pay attention. I took detailed notes and tours galore. The list shrank, slowly, extensive pictures. Environment and but surely. It made its way down to student quality moved up to number 25, closer to my goal but still not small one and two on my list of deciding facenough. tors. I realized that my surroundings, I began searching for student rematerial and human, really affect my views online, eventually settling on ability to learn and thrive. as my favorite After sending my brother off to resource. To prepare for the nevercollege, the search continued, but the ending college visits, I compiled lists focus was shifted to me. I slowly began of important facts, from the quality of

food to the availability of on-campus entertainment. By golly, that list would get smaller! From here on out, the process was more difficult. My schools were set on a pretty level playing ground, so I moved in with a new plan of attack. My parents, always willing to have an excuse for a vacation, eagerly joined me on college trips for most of the remaining schools. Having exhausted all other options, I began to go by gut feel. Some schools just made me feel unenthused and a couple actually made me feel a bit queasy. I stuck it out for most of the visits, but occasionally I encountered a school that I couldn’t even give the benefit of the doubt. Judging with my gut, the endless list was cut to almost 15. Whoopee! After that, I just couldn’t keep some schools straight, and thus began round two of campus visits. I ended up keeping some schools that I was sure I would chuck in the trashbin and I tossed out others that I fully expected to keep. Eventually, I realized that, though I may like a school, it didn’t mean I was destined to go there. By spending time imagining myself at each remaining college, the list managed to reach the golden twelve. I haven’t yet begun to see the results of my lengthy process, but I look forward to sifting through responses from the twelve colleges to find out if my gut was on target.

stay tuned for part two of shelby’s college search series |8

the end daniel pappas contributor Allow me to begin by establishing the scene. A The day before I leave my home and my country, I decide to spend it performing deeds of daring-do. I will attempt things I’ve always wanted to try, regardless of the de outcomes. I will treat this day as any person would treat their last day on earth. After all, ou everyone is entitled to the best last day ever, right? It would mean to me what it might ev mean to the terminally ill. I titled it “The Last Day on Earth.” I had a wish list, and I was m on a crazed mission to accomplish those wishes. Wish number one: get a kiss from a really hot girl way out of my league. Wish number two: get pulled over by the cops and escape any punishment. Wish number three: be see a terrible movie at its midnight premiere. Wish number four: play a single video se game all the way through. My list continued. To me, what’s on the list isn’t as important ga as the uncensored living. First, I was lucky that the girl I asked to kiss me didn’t smack me. Secondly, I was lucky that the police didn’t give me a ticket. I suppose it does sound crazy when all you lu say is, “Can I get a kiss from you?” I actually don’t know why she even bothered to listen sa to me. As for the police, well, that was dumb luck. I happened to get pulled over 15 feet from my house. The reason? My front right headlight wasn’t working properly. The offro ficer c wasn’t suspicious that two teenage boys were driving around at 2 a.m. My memory may be distorted, but I think at one point the officer called me “dude.” He let me go with m aw warning and I drove the 15 feet to my driveway. w I was extremely lucky that evening. The funny thing is, I did everything on my list. lis It was an awesome day, from beginning to end. en No regrets, no fear and no backing down from fro any challenge. That’s life at its finest. I’ve always wanted to try “The Last Day on Earth.” I did it not because I have some fatalisEa tic fantasy that the world will end soon. I did it because I have a zeal for life and life unadulterated. There’s nothing better than a day of doing what you want. With any luck, you don’t encounter too much conflict. I admit when I came back to the States from vacation I had some fires to put out, some Last Day leftovers that were still smoldering. All actions have consequences. The one thing I made a point of avoiding before leaving was confrontation. Just because it was my last day in Dallas didn’t mean I went around telling everybody what I thought of them. That was not the point of the Last Day. The point was to do something I had always been afraid to do, such as asking a girl for a kiss. What I learned from my Last Day experiment was how to live life more fully. I guess the best way to live life is to do all the good things you can think of without thinking of the consequences. Give a homeless man twenty dollars. Dance in public. Splash around a water fountain. If they’re truly good acts, there should be very little left to deal with in the end.

I have a new wish list of things to do. I hope you will help me achieve these landmarks: 1. Be in the middle of a dance circle at Homecoming or Prom 2. Play in the Spring Football Classic 3. Buzz my head for the State swimming competition 4. Run flags for a football game 5. Showcase my films at the AP art show | 9

how can you help? now that school has started, here are a few options for community service

start Do you plan which organizations you work with or do you sign up at the last minute? an pl






Do you like kids?

Do you have a pet?



Are you comfortable working with special needs or terminally ill children?


Do you like doing community service wit hf rie with a group or no nd s would you rather serve on your own? Would you rather pack food or cook it?



Are you severely allergic to dogs or cats?






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Would you rather work in the spotlight or behind the scenes?




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Operation Kindness “Saving Animals Since 1976” Operation Kindness is open every day except Tuesday and needs volunteers from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Serving at Operation Kindness can include walking dogs, answering phones, transporting animals and working in the kennels. Tomi Tucker ttucker@operationkindness. com

North Texas Food Bank

Ronald McDonald House

The food bank is open from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. During the week, the food bank accepts help sorting incoming food donations. Make sure to reserve a time at the food bank before you arrive. Sophia Sindalovsky

The Ronald McDonald House is open to both groups and individuals. Groups can cook meals and individuals can work at the front desk or in the kitchen after they apply. The Ronald McDonald House also has a Teen Board made up of students from the Dallas area. Emilie Peloubet

Rays of Light Rays of Light allows parents of children with special needs to take the night off. They offer a babysitting service at Lovers Lane United Methodist Church on the first Friday of every month. Make sure to sign up by e-mailing Alice before you arrive. Alice Sutherland

Don’t forget to turn in all of your community service hours to Mrs. O’Rear, Room 3007 | 10


exchange student Julius Schwarz writes about his re-entry into German life after a year in Dallas

Dear Parish Episcopal School, perspective. It showed me who I am and what I need Hi, it’s Julius Julius, the guy from Germany who spent to do to make my environment more appealing to my last year at your school. I am finally back home now after traveling through Europe this summer. I thought new requirements. Let me give you an example of one of these things. I would write this letter to tell you how I have been, Drinking in Germany is a normal part of teenage what I have done since I left the culture. Being allowed to drink at 16 States and how Germany, I had a classic welcome hard it can be to I discovered a lot about Europe in home beer once I arrived. But the come back home to Germany. by having an American friend more I sat around people drinking alcohol, the more I felt that it could I didn’t leave with me. not give me any new experiences, nor the States alone. I could it give me any fun that I couldn’t was accompanied by have while sober. So, after about a month and a half, Daniel Pappas, with whom I spent a great month on I just gave up drinking alcohol. It wasn’t hard for me, the road, or the railroad, if you want to be technical. just a decision. I’m sure it looked weird when I just It gave me the opportunity to discover Europe-and even my home country-through the eyes of a stranger. stood up from the table one day and, in front of all my friends, said, “I don’t drink anymore.” Sometimes Daniel saw beauty in things that I took After a little time, with the help of my friends and for granted. (Think how excited I was talking about more traveling, I finally felt at home. All in all, I’m Dallas’ HOV lane.) It made me think about how we fine! I have a lot to do. I started driving. My school perceive our environment. So, in a way, I discovered a lot about Europe by having an American friend with started again. My friends keep me busy and there are a few ideas that I want to realize, but one thing me. I still notice: I am not completely reintegrated into When I was asked what is different about the my hometown. Maybe this feeling will pass, maybe it United States, I could not say exactly what makes it won’t. Let’s just see how it goes. unique. I still don’t know an answer to Before ending that question, but I now know that it To be a stranger to your this letter, I want has something to do with the culture of to take the time food. If you don’t believe me, just go to own home is not exactly a and space to thank Spain and try the famous tapas or try a you again for evcurry wurst in Berlin. Trust me! Food nice experience. erything you have can tell you everything you need to know done for me. The about a country and about life there. way you treated me, the things you taught me and Another positive effect of having Daniel here was the experiences you shared with me changed my life. that I was busy, too busy showing him how awesome I want you to understand that you as a school comEurope can be to worry about how my life would be munity made me see how much better a person I can when I realized that I wasn’t in Dallas anymore. become, if only I try hard enough. It’s a lesson I will However, the day came when I had to face that a major change had occurred in my life. My mom called never forget. For lack of a better ending, I hope that all of you it a reverse culture shock. She was probably right had a great start this school year. Whether you are about the name. My first day back in my hometown student, teacher, staff or parent, I hope that all of you without Daniel, I entered my room to see that evhave a great year with many interesting experiences. erything was very close to how it was when I left for Texas. I stood there and thought, “Am I the only thing Special greetings go out to all the seniors: Thanks for being such an awesome class. And, who knows? I that has changed the last year?” To be a stranger to might be back one day to see how you’re doing. your own home is not exactly a nice experience and I hope that none of you ever feel that way. Keep in touch! On the other hand, my re-entry also allowed me Julius Schwarz to see myself and my surroundings with a different | 11

france alex fine entertainment editor Today, I woke myself up (again) at 7:45, took a shower and got a nice breakfast of croissants, crêpes, fruits and orange juice in the hotel lobby. Next, Henri and I went to clean out our hotel room so we could checkout and go to the train station to finally head up to Biarritz to meet our host families. At the train station, I realized nothing ever stops moving in France. Everyone is always rushing around looking for something, no matter how condensed the area. Anyway, we boarded the train and took a five-hour trip from Paris to Biarritz. During that time, I got a chance to catch up on my writing and song ideas, as well as talk to some new friends who went to Highland Park High School that I had met on the study abroad program. From the train ride, I also discovered I was going to be changing families and would now room with Fernando, a boy from Mexico who traveled with us on the trip. This leaves Henri to room with Andrew Mowery, who arrives tomorrow. When we all got off the train, our families were waiting for us on the platform. The homestay family I met at the station was very nice. The family was made up of one married couple and their two daughters, who seemed a bit older than both Fernando and me. They took us back to their apartment complex where we were given the rest of the information

about Biarritz. They showed us the town, the school, as well as some of the local beaches. The scenery is simply beautiful and breathtaking as I watch the horizon, standing at the edge of the beach looking out into the waves that crash along the shoreline. When we arrived back at our new home, Fernando and I decided to take a stroll around our neighborhood, where we ran into a couple of other girls in the exchange program. Following our walk, we arrived back to eat a nice home-cooked meal consisting of a pasta dish with a creamy butter sauce, which we both loved. Then we presented gifts to the family, which they enjoyed, especially the chocolate and the candy. Next, the night continued as we watched the FIFA World Cup match between Austria and Germany. This was an interesting experience because it was hard to follow the announcers as they kept speaking French at a rate I couldn’t keep up with. This meant I was stuck watching the game the oldfashioned way. Germany won 4-0. Following that, we flipped through channels while I was struggling to stay awake the whole time. Finally, Fernando and I decided to go to sleep. After all, tomorrow’s the first day y of class. This bee in interesting. T hi s sshould hould b nteresting. |12

spain cyrus ghaznavi contributer Today, Chris, Ian and I woke up early, at around 6:30, to go to school in San Sebastian, Spain. At Lacunza, all the students took a diagnostic test to gauge their individual skill levels. The test itself was pretty easy, although there was some material that I hadn’t yet covered, which made it somewhat more difficult. My roommates and I each got into the most advanced level, making for an intense two weeks of school. Our conversation teacher, Irkus, was quite flamboyant. The way he dressed and his facial expressions augmented this already well-developed trait. Simply put, his uniqueness made the class quite interesting, perhaps due to his weird actions, or perhaps his attempts at speaking English. We were assigned homework after a rather difficult class, short essays in Spanish, of course, on topics mentioned in class. Unfortunately for Chris, he had to make a quantum physics presentation, all in Spanish. Luckily, his dictionary was very thorough. That night, he was hurriedly coming up with as much as he could to present the next day, and I would be lying if I said that his panic wasn’t amusing. He ended up doing an excellent job, giving the basic principals and rules of quantum physics. I was assigned the topic of Guernica, the city where the blitzkrieg was tested during WWII. The topic was intermediate and by no means world-ending.

trying to get familiar with the streets and landmarks. We briefly perused La Kontxa, one of the three beautiful beaches in the city. It could be classified as a family beach. Zurriola is the surfing beach, primarily for teens and the occasional nudist, and Onderrata is another familytype beach. Later on in the day, our entire group went to a churrería, which, as suggested by the name, serves primarily churros. They were delicious, and made even better by the smooth, rich chocolate dipping sauce. Throughout the day, it was constantly raining. In fact, it rained the entire first week in San Sebastian. As a result of the poor weather, we couldn’t climb Mount Urgull as planned. Mount Urgull is essentially a large hill-like mountain with a giant statue of Jesus perched on the top. We soon started back home, where we ate a satisfying dinner, starting at around 9 p.m. The dinners are always late, and they usually end at around ten o’clock. Since our curfew was at eleven, and we wouldn’t have been able to do anything in one hour, we all went to bed, except for Chris, of course. He had work to do.

After school we walked around the city, | 13

crossing the line would you walk the extra mile?

tehjal suri managing editor


here are 20 other parking spots. She’s already frustrated from the amount of traffic she encountered on her way to school. Now only one thing stands in her way–the yellow line. Ultimately, she decides it’s worth crossing. “I was either looking at getting a detention for being late to chapel or parking in the senior lot,” Senior Megan Thursby said. A few years ago, Mr. Ken Merten, the school’s then Director of Facilities, established a yellow line in the student parking lot, separating the senior parking lot from the rest of student parking. However, because Mr. Merten is no longer with the school, Mrs. Linda Bernard, Assistant Head of Upper School for Student Life, gave The PEN a history of the yellow parking lot line.

Megan said. “So I decided to just “When the school was first park in the senior parking lot. established, everyone used to park in the front,” Mrs. Bernard Why would I go the extra mile and be late if I could just park in said. “Then the student body one of the other spots that was got too big and we opened up open in the senior parking lot?” the parking lot on the side for And while it’s an unspoken students, but faculty and seniors rule, there were repercussions could still park in the front.” as a result As the senior of Megan’s class grew “Why would I go decision to even more, a cross the line. senior parking the extra mile and be late if I could Megan Leslie lot within the instead just park in ’12 announced other student in an all parking lot was one of the 20 spots that were open?” upper school carved out, meeting that explained Mrs. the underclassmen needed to Bernard, “so that seniors still stop parking in the senior lot. had a sort of seniority privilege “I knew she was talking about for parking.” me,” Megan Thursby said. “The Last year, juniors Megan next day, Mrs. Bernard gave me Thursby and Kramer Babilla a detention. But I still did it one crossed this line, violating more time and got one more the unspoken rule of no detention.” underclassmen parking in the At the time, Megan thought senior parking lot. the seniors were overreacting. Megan parked past the yellow line three times last year, Now she thinks she can understand why. despite this rule. “I thought last year the “The only parking spot seniors made it too big a deal available past the yellow line because I wasn’t a senior was a mile away from chapel,”

myself,” she said. “But then, now that I’m a senior and I realize that we are nuts about our privileges, I wouldn’t want juniors to park there.” Kramer Babilla, another senior who violated the rule last year, encountered a different result. “I parked in the senior parking lot during finals, and they put the insides of a burrito all over my car, in the grooves and cracks,” he said. “They even colored my windows with those chalk pens so I couldn’t see out of them.” Despite what happened, Kramer says he wasn’t even upset and that he would’ve done the same. He even mentions cleaning up the mess was almost like a blessing. “Since I had burrito in the cracks of my car and pen drawings on the windows, I decided to finally get a car wash, said Kramer. “I’m glad they did it because my parents were complaining that my car was dirty.”

blast from the past

what they would have done differently freshman year I would have slacked off more freshman year. Caroline Pittet ‘11 1

I would have come to Parish. David Van Amburgh ‘11 I would have actually paid attention in class. p

I would have stayed on the third floor. George Collins ‘11

Mahek Wazarali ‘11 M ne sfromthepen com | 14

I would have stayed on Mrs. Bernard’s good side. Scott Stockdale ‘11 | 15 graphic by jasmine epps-flowers

{ this summer i regret }

not drinking enough Slurpees

“ ” “

not practicing how to park

not losing 50 pounds

getting sick in Colorado

“ “

the girlfriends I didn’t have

not growing a handlebar moustache

not learning how to flush a European toilet

” ”


Sept Issue 2010-11