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Non-Profit Organization U.S. POSTAGE PAID Sacramento, CA Permit No. 1668

VOL. 40, NO. 6


Sacramento Country Day School PREPARING PROSECUTION Senior Jaelan Trapp finishes his trial notes minutes before the final trial against Elk Grove High School at the Robert T. Matsui Courthouse, Feb. 27. Coach Wayne Strumpfer said Trapp preferred working alone, silently constructing his trial arguments. PHOTO BY CHARDONNAY NEEDLER



2636 Latham Drive, Sacramento

March 21, 2017


Mock Trial tackles human trafficking, places 2nd BY CHARD0NNAY NEEDLER “All rise,” a booming voice shouts in the Robert T. Matsui Courthouse in downtown Sacramento. The “State v. Awbrey” case is in session. Lin Stark, a middle-aged immigrant from the country of Tanterra, is being overworked, underpaid and unfairly treated by her boss and the owner of Taste of Tanterra, Cameron Awbrey. So Stark took Awbrey to court on the grounds of human trafficking. At the county courthouse, tensions are

high and points thoroughly argued. Except this case isn’t real. This case is what earned the SCDS Mock Trial team second place in Sacramento County, one of the most competitive districts in the league. The case was created by the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF) and formulated into a script as the Mock Trial case for 2016-17. Stark and Awbrey were both played by sophomore Gabi Alvarado; the attorneys were really senior Jaelan Trapp and sophomore Jack Christian; the pre-trial attorney was senior Shriya Nadgauda; and the

expert on human trafficking was sophomore Blake Lincoln. That’s not to say that a case of an overburdened immigrant was far from reality. In fact, Mock Trial coach Wayne Strumpfer, who worked at the Victim Compensation Board last year, said he has dealt with real-life cases like Stark’s. “There was a Christmas-tree farmer who needed labor to cut down trees in the fall,” Strumpfer said. “He got these immigrants from Mexico, and he trafficked them by making

MOCK TRIAL page 4 >>

Large majority thinks AP classes should be worth the weight BY QUIN LACOMB Advanced Placement (AP) classes are harder than regular classes because of a more rigorous curriculum. Even so, AP classes are weighted on the same scale as other classes on the SCDS honor roll. This has proven to be an unpopular policy. An Octagon poll of 110 high schoolers on March 16 showed that 85 percent of highschool students think AP classes should be weighted more highly for the honor roll. Senior Isabelle Leavy, who is taking five AP classes and one regular one, would support the weighting of AP classes for honor roll. “I have good grades, but I’m taking a large number of AP classes, and it really does take a toll on me,” she said. “This last (quarter) I wasn’t on the honor roll, but I really deserve that recognition because of the course load.” But it’s not looking like this system will change any time soon. Head of high school Brooke Wells said that the honor roll should be more inclusive and celebrate good students, regardless of how many AP’s they’re taking. If the honor roll were weighted, he said, it would be skewed in favor of those taking AP’s. “You don’t find many AP students who aren’t on the honor roll,” he said. “It’s not comparative and doesn’t have a certain percentage of students; it has a set GPA requirement.” Daniel Neukom, history teacher and exdean of students, agrees. He said that students taking AP classes are obviously skilled in that subject, and thus it’s the right fit for them. “We try to match a student’s ability to their subject,” he said. “It’s worrisome when students will say something like ‘I got a B in AP US History, but it’s technically an A.’ “No, you did B-level work in that class.” Neukom said the system started some time

WEIGHTED page 3 >>

HERE COMES HINOJOSA English teacher to-be Jason Hinojosa poses with a sadhu (holy man) in Kathmandu, Nepal. PHOTO USED BY PERMISSION OF HINOJOSA

Two-time novelist, global traveler settles in Sacramento to join faculty

New teacher attracted by small classes, close community BY JACK CHRISTIAN


hat do a Peruvian writer and a member of the Raider Nation have in

common? Both of them will be joining the high-school faculty next year! Jason Hinojosa and Damany Fisher have been chosen to fill the open English and history positions in the high school, respectively. Hinojosa is currently a graduate student at the University of Iowa, studying to obtain a

master’s in fine arts and creative writing. To pay tuition, he teaches classes in both the English and creative writing departments. Hinojosa is projected to teach freshman English and both AP and regular senior English. Hinojosa said that he was drawn to Country Day because of its size. “I really liked the idea of a small community and English department, where I could get to know all my students,” Hinojosa said. In Hinojosa’s current position he teaches 50 undergraduates of

the 24,476 at the University of Iowa. “So the idea of having 50 students that I would get to know or 150 students in the high school was really appealing to me,” Hinojosa said. Hinojosa will be making the journey from Iowa to Sacramento during the summer with his wife Dana and their cat, Johnny. The family is especially looking forward to connecting with relatives in Sacramento. Hinojosa said that both his wife’s parents live in Sacramento, and her brother- and sister-inlaw and their three kids are going

to move to Sacramento as well. Both Hinojosa and his wife, Dana, are from big families. “(Dana) is one of six kids, and if you include my stepbrothers, I am one of eight,” Hinojosa said. “So it is very unlikely for our whole family to be in the same city, but to have a big cluster in Sacramento is really exciting for us.” Hinojosa said he loves to write, practice yoga and run during his free time. “Writing is my passion,” Hinojosa said.

TEACHERS page 11 >>

Art, history teachers shout last Renaissance ‘huzzah!’ BY CHARD0NNAY NEEDLER The Renaissance Faire: a festive day of recorder music, phony British accents, apothecary and flower shops stocked with mini potions and flower garlands, and, of course, “huzzahs!” It’s a rite of passage for every seventh grader at Country Day. But this year marks the end of an era for this euphoric European-inspired day, as it is both organizer Patricia Kelly and King Chris Kuipers’s last year participating in the tradition.

Kelly is retiring, and Kuipers is trading his seventh-grade world history class for AP European History next year. Kelly said she’s been “everything from parent organizer, script editor, and lunch-andbreak performance coach, setup and cleanup go-to person (to supply orderer)” for the past 11 years. Kuipers, who has been part of the Faire for seven years, praised Kelly for her role. “I’m always sort of in awe that it comes together so well,” Kuipers said. “There are so many different moving pieces, and there are always scheduling issues. Hats off to Ms. Kelly!”

Among the activities Kelly schedules are the Maypole Dance, a reenactment of traditional Middle Age dances complete with multicolored ribbons and recorder music; the seventh graders’ parade through the school on the way to the Renaissance Faire play in the MP Room; the guilds (apothecary, games, food and merchant) that sell Renaissance and Middle Age-themed goods; and the assembly and dismantling of the castle. When Kelly was first asked by former head of middle school Quincey Grieve to take on this assignment, she accepted immediately.

REN FAIRE page 10 >>

SPONTANEOUS SONNET History teacher King Chris Kuipers honors Patricia Kelly, art teacher and Renaissance Faire organizer. PHOTO USED BY PERMISSION OF SANDY BUCHANAN




ROBBING FRESHMAN QUAD Left: Senior Adam Dean sits in his Prius with all the items he swiped in his trunk. Dean stole a TI-89 calculator, an umbrella, a sweater, three jackets, a pair of shorts, three pairs of shoes, two tennis rackets,

March 21, 2017

87 books and a computer charger and case. Right: Dean looks through the opened lockers in the freshman quad, deciding what he should steal. PHOTOS BY AIDAN CUNNINGHAM

Who burglarized high-school campus?

Senior robber nabs over 100 objects from quads during stealthy late-night raid


nybody walking through the high school will notice backpacks, sports equipment and textbooks lying around. Even after school, many of these things, along with open lockers, are still there. Country Day is a tight-knit community, and with that comes a strong sense of security on campus.

During our hour-and-a-half crime spree, the only person who could’ve caught us was a maintenance guy working in the middle school. And he was too busy cleaning to notice us all the way up in the high school. Keep in mind that actual robbers wouldn’t take so long to go through lockers. They would probably be in and out in less than 10 minutes. The next morning when I arrived at school, I heard BY ADAM DEAN panicked underclassmen stressing about their missing belongings. “It was pandemonium!” physical education teacher MiBut what many students don’t realize is how easy it is chelle Myers said. for a stranger to come onto campus and steal their belong“I had five students come to me asking frantically if I ings. The only thing preventing this is the maintenance knew where their stuff was. And all of them were asking staff, who can’t be everywhere at all times. where the lost-and-found was, too!” In fact, in just the past year, there have been two inciDuring first period, I pulled my car around to the dents of stolen laptops during after-school events. blacktop and carted everybody’s belongings into the So to see just how much someone could steal by taking weight room. advantage of students’ negligence, I did it myself. At morning meeting, I revealed our devious scheme and On Thursday, March 9, my trusty sidekick, senior Aidan told students where they could collect their possessions. Cunningham, and I came back to school at 8:30 p.m. and Much of the crowd was amused by the experiment. did our best burglar impersonations. And those who lost things were relieved. Our first target was the gold mine of the high school: Once break ended, students filed into the weight room the freshman quad. and were overjoyed to see that they hadn’t actually been From the top of the robbed. One of those was sophomore freshman lockers alone, Lia Kaufman. we snatched five textbooks “I was super scared because I really ‘I WAS SUPER SCARED BE(one covered in cobwebs), thought my books had been stolen,” three pairs of shoes and Kaufman said. CAUSE I REALLY THOUGHT MY two jackets. While there is most likely only BOOKS HAD BEEN STOLEN’ Then we scouted the a slim chance that someone would LIA KAUFMAN, SOPHOMORE rest of the high-school come through and steal as much as quads. To our disappointwe did, the potential losses could be ment there weren’t many colossal. items left out there. If all the textbooks I took had been bought used at the So the majority of our haul came from unlocked lock- school’s summer book sale, they would’ve cost $2,385, let ers. alone if they were new. And that total is just for textbooks. Many students can’t handle the hassle of unlocking That number doesn’t include the multiple lunchboxes, caltheir lockers every time they need to access them. culators, and umbrellas that I also found. So during the day they either leave them wide open But what’s even more worrying is the number of things or jam the lock, which bypasses having to enter a combi- that might have been stolen if not for the maintenance nation. And while the maintenance workers close lockers staff. after school, they don’t unjam them. Up until this year, custodian Matt Liedtke worked the After about 10 minutes of checking, Aidan and I found night shift in the high school. 17 unlocked lockers. Score! Two years ago he picked up 126 laptops left out after Unsurprisingly, eight were in the freshman quad and school. none were in the senior area. “Last year I just didn’t bother keeping count again,” It took us more than an hour and a half to gather and Liedtke said. “(The number of laptops left out) has gotten inventory everything, take pictures and load our haul into better, but it’s still really bad.” the back of my car. Liedtke also confirmed that there are people who come Our stash included textbooks, calculators, clothing and after hours looking to steal. even two tennis rackets. Not only are students being careless when they leave “It’s so crazy that all this is just left out to be taken,” their things out, but also they’re trashing the campus. Aidan said. “(The freshmen) should be doing a better job (of keep“Yeah, I would definitely come here all the time if I ing their quad clean),” dean of student life Patricia Jacobwere homeless,” I replied as I tried on a fashionable jacket sen said. “One time I had to clean up a moldy apple from from a sophomore’s locker. the top of their lockers.” “Hey, that color matches your eyes perfectly!” Aidan Leaving food out not only harms the campus’s appearsaid giggling. ance, but it also attracts rodents, Liedtke said. The process of getting everything into the car and keepEven so, some people never learn. ing it sorted was tedious. And there was so much that I Only two days after the “robbery,” Jacobsen discovered had to fold down the back seat of my car. two laptops left out on tables and a red camera in an open Even then it was a tight fit. locker.


senior adam dean conducted an experiment on march 9, when he stole items in the high school. the graphic illustrates the items found and their approximate used price.


march 9, 2017

1 calculator


3 pairs of shoes


2 tennis rackets


9 clothing pieces


1 macbook charger and case 87 textbooks


$75 $2,385



March 21, 2017



Poor penmanship plagues both young and old S

ophomore Chardonnay Needler has frequently been told by her mother that she has bad handwriting and that it would get her in trouble during tests in the future. “I’ve always dismissed that fact

She also lets students write essays “However, if the student wrote a on the computer. paragraph or essay that I can’t read, Batarseh said that because this grading becomes more complicated, student is part of a very small class, and (their handwriting) can unforit doesn’t affect her curriculum very tunately impact their grade much, but in a larger class, bad handif I interpret something writing can impact the curriculum. wrong.” “Many Latin words need to have Whited allows diacritical markings,” Batarseh students with bad said. “Adding these on the computer handwriting to type is a slow process if your computer isn’t homework assignments installed for Latin writing.” and sometimes tests. Of course, students with bad handS he also can give the students writing could type out their home- “extra time on tests so they can take work without the markings, and add their time to write clearly instead of them later by hand, but this process is writing fast and sloppy.” very time-consuming, Batarseh said. “I think the problem can be Biology teacher handled on a stuKellie Whited said bad dent-by-student basis handwriting impacts and not a schoolwide her class because basis, especially be‘I BELIEVE THERE IS much of the way A DEVELOPMENTAL cause teachers have science teachers different teaching ISSUE” test students’ knowlmethods,” Whited JANE BAUMAN, edge is written, not said. math-based. English teacher ENGLISH TEACHER “I make short anJane Bauman might swer questions, fill-inhave an easier solution. the-blank questions “I believe this is a deand essays to show that a student velopmental issue,” Bauman said. understands (the material) and isn’t “Students’ cursive handwriting regurgitating information,” Whited won’t get better unless they practice, said. because good cursive is a skill you “If I cannot read their handwriting, develop through practice, like playing it can be very difficult to grade the as- the piano. signment, because in (classes like) bi“My daughter (Claire, ‘09), for exology we use very specific terms with ample, decided that her goal during very specific spellings.” her time at college would be to imIn Whited’s classes, there prove her cursive. She took notes by are typically two or three hand in every class, and her curstudents whose handwritsive improved a lot.” ing is so bad that she Bauman said that students can’t read it, she said. should pursue activities during “Once I tell (the which they try to improve their student) that I cursive, such as journals, letters, cannot read their thank-you notes, notes they take in handwriting class or the first draft of an essay. that it’s impacting “Typing is great for publishing and their grade and that it coming up with a final product that takes a lot of time to grade is readable,” Bauman said. “But your their assignments - they try their best cursive won’t get better unless you to write as clearly as they can,” Whit- practice. ed said. “I have seen kids who put effort If Whited can’t read what letter a into improving their writing be very student wrote on a multiple-choice pleased with their results.” question, she consults the other sciAccording to Bauman, there are ence teachers and, without showing many ways in which good cursive them the question, asks them what benefits students. letter they think the student wrote. An example is the SAT essay, “If they both say the same letter, I which is still handwritten. grade the answer as being that letter. “The essay is certainly important If they say a different letter, I ask the students themselves.” PENMANSHIP page 4 >>


BY HÉLOÏSE SCHEP because my teachers could read my handwriting and because, in my opinion, it was the teachers’ job to decipher what I wrote,” Needler said. However, during a recent test in Chris Millsback’s math class, Needler’s mother’s prediction came true. “One of my answers simplified to an expression with a fraction and the variable ‘x’ at the end,” Needler said. “I just wrote an ‘x’ next to the fraction, because I knew in my head where the fraction bar ended and the variable began.” However, Millsback graded the question as if the “x’’ was part of the fraction, not next to it, and he took off points. And this happened ‘I UNDERfour other STAND WHY times on the test. HE TOOK “I underOFF POINTS’ stand why CHARhe took off points,” DONNAY Needler NEEDLER, said. “If SOPHOMORE this were to happen in a real science or math field, my carelessness could have led a reader to believe my fraction was something very different.” Most Country Day teachers agree that bad handwriting can influence grades, but they have differing opinions on how to handle this problem. Latin teacher Jane Batarseh is one of them. “There is a student in my AP Latin class whose handwriting I just can’t read,” Batarseh said. “I underline words I can’t understand and ask the student about them later.”

Chardonnay Needler




How to calculate your weighted GPA CLASS TYPE



B (4.0) C+ (2.3) A (4.0) C- (2.7) B (3.0)




2 2 2 2 2

SCORE = = = = =

8.0 4.6 8.0 5.4 6.0

32.0 = 3.20 10

Carlos Nuñez

Alex Rogawski

Ron Bell

Weighted: Bauman says colleges don’t care (continued from page 1) in the ‘90s, when the school started to offer more AP’s. On the other hand, the GPA the school sends to colleges weights AP classes. College counselor and English teacher Jane Bauman says that SCDS uses weighted grades to put students in their best light. “The weighted GPA gives an idea of a student’s achievement and the rigor of the coursework,” Bauman said. The Cum Laude program also weights AP classes differently. French teacher Richard Day, president of Country Day’s chapter, said

that Cum Laude recognizes what the UC system recognizes. According to him, the AP classes are weighted differently because they are college-level classes, so the top students are going to take them. “We have so many students taking AP classes that it only makes sense to take them into account,” he said. Wells said that the reason that Cum Laude is weighted and honor roll isn’t is that Cum Laude celebrates students who do well in the most difficult classes, while honor roll celebrates good students. The honor roll used to be published every quarter in the Friday Email, but it stopped this year for the high school.

Wells said the administration stopped publishing the honor roll because students should be celebrating their achievement rather than competing with others. But Leavy disagrees. “There is so much more joy when it is published!” she said. But does honor roll really matter that much? According to Bauman, it doesn’t matter. “(Colleges) look at grades and rigor and don’t pay much attention to honor roll,” she said. “Honor roll is a nice way to give a nod to students who are working hard - and maybe provide a little extra motivation to those who need it.”




March 21, 2017

Mock Trial: Prosecution deals with ambiguity; facts require argument (continued from page 1)

PREPARING FOR PRE-TRIAL Senior Shriya Nadgauda reviews her pre-trial statement as junior Smita Sikaria readys her timekeeping equipment before the trial against Elk Grove High School. PHOTO BY CHARDONNAY NEEDLER

Penmanship: Writing slower helps students (continued from page 3) and needs to be legible,” Bauman said. “You can’t expect to sit down the day before the SAT and have perfect cursive. You have to practice.” A former grader of SAT essays said the College Board assesses its hired graders on both accuracy and speed. “If I got an essay that had terrible handwriting, I was already a little miffed because I worried it might affect my speed rating,” she said. “It took me a long time to read and decipher some tests. “It’s never a good thing to have the grader feeling irritated after reading

them work 18-20 hours a day, giving them little food and even keeping them at gunpoint.” It’s no surprise, then, that the scripted story isn’t preposterous, as the CRF creates cases parallel to what’s happening in the news. According to Strumpfer, several laws have been passed in California to punish human traffickers, about half of which practice prostitution. And unlike prostitution, proving someone is being trafficked and not simply overworked requires more than just evidence. In fact, according to co-captain and MVP Trapp, what separated this case from previous ones was that vagueness. “It’s harder than last year’s (case) because last year was a murder, so there’s someone that killed someone - not as much ambiguity,” Trapp said.

just one word.” But some students say no amount of practice can fix their handwriting. Junior Carlos Nuñez has been diagnosed with dysgraphia, which means not only that his handwriting is messy and he writes slower but also that he has a harder time expressing himself when writing by hand. Nuñez learned to write in school, but because he has had dysgraphia his entire life, his handwriting has been bad ever since lower school. “I used to practice writing with my mom, tutors and teachers after school,” Nuñez said. “To make it legible, I have to write at a slower pace, and occasionally I have to go back and rewrite letters,” Nuñez said. “I have to press very hard on pencils and pens to write neatly, so if I have to write longer pieces, I must rest my hand a lot.” Teachers have commented on

Last year’s case, involving the killing of an abusive police officer, was analogous to the events that happened in Ferguson, Missouri. In fact, according to Strumpfer, 50 percent of CRF cases are murders in which students learn how manslaughter and murder differ, not so much whether the crime actually happened. “With human trafficking, you can’t even be sure if someone has been trafficked or not, let alone who did it,” Trapp said. “In this case you had to prove whether or not the crime happened in the first place.” According to Strumpfer, there is a fine line between “overworking an immigrant who hadn’t been in America very long via a misunderstanding” and human trafficking. That’s why, as Trapp said, the team had to “go into Awbrey’s mind.”

According to Trapp, there were many facts on file that didn’t make sense from the prosecution’s view, such as: “Why did Awbrey give Stark a key to the apartment she was restrained in?” and “Why did Awbrey give Stark free meals?” “We came up with the idea that even when she was in Tanterra, people always had to provide for her family,” Trapp said. “That’s why she didn’t run away.” These facts, Trapp said, made the prosecution’s argument harder to execute, as the defense doesn’t have to argue anything. “Every little fact sheds doubt on the prosecution, who has to prove ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ that the defendant had intent,” Trapp said. “‘Beyond a reasonable doubt’ (means) more than 80- or 90-percent sure.” And proving intent “beyond a reasonable doubt” required research during and outside of the Sunday Mock Trial practices. So Mock Trial attorneys have to think critically and look at the facts, the law and how they fit together, both in court and in the humble SCDS library on Sunday mornings.

Nuñez’s handwriting since lower “Composing things on a computer school, but he said the comments allows a lot of freedom because you have decreased. can easily re-edit things, and you don’t “When there is something that have to worry about small commands has to be writlike skipping a ten by hand, it’s line or indenting a rarely an in-class phrase,” Bell said. assignment, so I However, he ‘TO MAKE IT LEGIBLE, I don’t have to worstill grades quizry about trying to zes and small HAVE TO WRITE AT A write quickly,” assignments by SLOWER PACE, AND OCNuñez said. hand. And he preCASIONALLY I HAVE TO But what about fers students take GO BACK AND REWRITE students whose notes that way. LETTERS’ handwriting is “Research has legible? How shown that if you CARLOS NUÑEZ, JUNIOR should they do write something their work? Many by hand, you reteachers are torn member it better,” between the positive effect writing Bell said. “There is also a completely by hand has on students’ memory and different thought process that goes the easiness of grading typed work. with computers as opposed to writing English teacher Ron Bell believes by hand.” major assignments should be typed. Bauman believes that students

should write the notes they take in class by hand and type them out later. “When you write notes by hand, you remember the information better, but students shouldn’t feel the pressure to organize their notes as they write them,” she said. And Bauman also values the speed of cursive writing. “You can keep up with your train of thought,” she said. Ironically, Bell’s students often struggle to read his handwriting. “I’ve always had bad handwriting,” Bell said. “I refused to learn how to write in cursive when I was a child. “I felt that it was a violation of my individuality to be taught to write exactly like everyone else.” Bell now suffers from arthritis in his hands, causing his letters to be very angular, he said. Therefore, he lets students turn in major assignments online so he can type comments.

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March 21, 2017






Juniors Jake and Bryce Longoria love to play, watch and talk basketball, especially about the Sacramento Kings.

HE’S BACK Coach Scott Galati, who last coached SCDS softball in 2012, gives the girls defensive advice during a timeout at the March 13 New Life Christian game.

Galati’s daughter Madison, ‘12, formed the former team in 2008 when she was a freshman. The team has lost its first three games. PHOTO BY ADAM DEAN

Softball brought back to life after five years, but team struggles with mass inexperience BY BRYCE LONGORIA


fter four years in the grave, the girls’ softball team has been resurrected. With the change in the soccer season (girls’ soccer was moved from spring to winter), athletic director Matt Vargo thought there might be enough interest to start up the team again. “We figured we’d give it a shot,” Vargo said. “We went with it, and there was a big signup.” The last time Country Day had a softball team was in 2012. That team was formed by Madison Galati, ‘12, in 2008, her freshman year. The team made playoffs in their first year and finished third or fourth the following seasons, Galati said. Nevertheless, there was a lack of interest in softball after Galati graduated, so the sport was cut, Vargo said. Now it’s back, and he’s happy it is. “That means there is something positive about soccer being moved to the winter,” Vargo said. With the addition of Country Day, the softball league now has seven teams: Leroy Greene Academy, New Life Christian School, Valley Christian Academy, Western Sierra Collegiate Academy, Buckingham Charter Magnet High School and Sacramento Adventist Academy. And Galati’s father Scott, for-

mer coach, has returned to coach the new team. “We have a lot of athleticism and enthusiasm,” Scott said. “I think my experience with the previous (Country Day) team will translate to this one.” That’s because Galati sees some similarities between the two. “The team is very similar to my daughter’s in that most of the players are inexperienced,” Galati said.

bull is the only one with previous experience. “I’ve been playing competitive softball for about four years,” Turnbull said. “On my team outside of school, I play second base, but here I have to pitch.” Galati’s encouragement has rubbed off on his players, particularly senior Alexa Mathisen. “I think it’ll be a good and fun learning experience,” Mathisen said. “I’ve always wanted to play,

HEY, BATTER, BATTER, SWING! Senior Alexa Mathisen awaits a pitch during the March 13 New Life Christian game. Mathisen later stole two bases, but the girls still lost, 0-17. PHOTO BY ADAM DEAN

“(Freshman) Naomi (Turnbull) is a lot like my daughter in that she has club softball experience, and then the rest of the team has relatively no experience playing the sport.” In fact, of the 11 players, Turn-

so I think it’s nice that I have a chance to learn the basics, which is an opportunity you wouldn’t get at other high schools.” However, the excitement and enthusiasm hasn’t yet translated to success on the field.

In their first game, the team was obliterated, 2-19, by the Leroy Greene Academy Lions. According to Mathisen, inexperience was the primary reason for the loss. “I think our instincts were good, and we didn’t let balls go over our head,” Mathisen said. “But we just had first-game jitters, like we didn’t know where to throw to get people out. “Also, Naomi is the only one who really knows how to pitch, so that puts us at a disadvantage.” Mathisen said going forward the team needs to work hard and practice. Practicing has been difficult since the softball season now coincides with the baseball season, so they can’t always practice on the backfield. The team practices at Arden Park if the backfield is occupied after school. Galati wants the girls to come away feeling strong and good about themselves. “I want every one of those girls to feel empowered,” Galati said. “I want to make sure they feel that they can hit as hard as anybody else and throw as far as anybody else and have fun.” Although their first game was anything but fun, Mathisen thinks the team can improve. “Up to this point, we’ve really only practiced hitting and throwing to each other,” Mathisen said. “We are going to start working on more team skills and game situations.”

Jake: Bryce, how’ve the Kings been doing since we traded Demarcus? Bryce: We finally won a game after losing eight straight. So not bad. J: That’s terrible! B: Yeah, it’s called sarcasm. J: I mean I thought we’d be doing badly since we traded away the best player on our team. Do you think we should’ve traded him? B: Yeah. He wouldn’t have made us anything more than a low-tier playoff team, if that. J: But making the playoffs would’ve been cool. We just spent $532.6 million on the new arena. B: But would it have been cool to get swept in the first round? J: At least we would’ve sold tickets! B: In the future, we would’ve been stuck there, though. No free agents wanted to come to Sacramento to play with Demarcus, and we wouldn’t have a chance at a high draft pick. J: But we didn’t get much in return. All we got was Buddy, Tyreke, Langston and the Pelicans’ picks. B: Yeah, Vlade said he had a better offer two days before he made the actual trade. J: Then why’d we take the trade from the Pelicans? B: It’s clear “basketball expert” (and owner) Vivek (Ranadive) really wanted Buddy. J: But we traded away our starting center! B: To make room for the other four on our bench! Willie CauleyStein has been playing pretty well. In the first game without Demarcus, Demarcus Cousins he scored 29 points. J: I definitely think Skal (Labisserie) could be the Kings’ future. He has great scoring games - like when he scored 15 points in 15 minutes against the Spurs. B: But he’s not a very good on-ball defender, and he gets bullied by stronger big men. J: His jump shot is nice, and he has a good post fade. He’s like a more athletic version of Dirk. And Dirk just hit 30,000 points! B: I think Cauley-Stein is the obvious choice because he played backup to Demarcus. He’s better right now because he does almost the same thing as Skal on offense, but he’s better defensively. J: But Skal is the @OneBigHaitian we need. And he’s only 20. He has so much time to grow, and his athleticism will take him far. What about the picks? A second-round pick in two years doesn’t benefit us at all right now. B: But the first-round pick is shaping up nicely. J: I think we’re putting too much blind hope into this draft. B: It’s one of the deeper drafts. We could get guys like Malik Monk or Lauri Markkanen with the sixth or seventh pick. Each could be an All Star. J: That’s if we get the sixth or seventh pick. But hopefully you’re some kind of prophet!

Sports Boosters’ Athletes of the Month Cole Johnson

Johnson ended the basketball season with an average of 20.3 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game. Johnson was also chosen as the MVP at the March 15 winter sports banquet.

Michaela Chen

A “real asset,” Chen has lost only one of her five singles matches, winning most, 6-1 or 6-0, even though it’s being her first year on the tennis team. According to coach Jamie Nelson, she is eager to learn and quickly makes improvements.

Paid for by our generous Sports Boosters. For information, please see SCDS homepage under the Quicklink “Parents.”




March 21, 2017

My Angle

“Feelings” by Mohini Rye


By Jackson Margolis


Belts suspend male style

BUSINESS MANAGER CHARDONNAY NEEDLER PRINT COPY EDITOR QUIN LACOMB ONLINE COPY EDITOR SAHEJ CLAIRE NEWS EDITOR MARIGOT FACKENTHAL FEATURE EDITOR ANNYA DAHMANI OPINION EDITOR KATIA DAHMANI SPORTS EDITOR ADAM DEAN SOCIAL MEDIA EDITOR JACK CHRISTIAN PAGE EDITORS JACK CHRISTIAN ANNYA DAHMANI KATIA DAHMANI ADAM DEAN MARIGOT FACKENTHAL CHARDONNAY NEEDLER MOHINI RYE NICOLE WOLKOV ALLISON ZHANG REPORTERS LARKIN BARNARD-BAHN EMMA BOERSMA BRI DAVIES ANNA FRANKEL MEHDI LACOMBE BRYCE LONGORIA JAKE LONGORIA JACKSON MARGOLIS RIYA RAMPALLI HÉLOÏSE SCHEP SPENCER SCOTT GARRETT SHONKWILER DAVID SITU CARTOONIST MOHINI RYE MULTIMEDIA & TECH QUIN LACOMB PHOTOGRAPHERS JACQUELINE CHAO KEVIN HUANG BENETT SACKHEIM ADVISER PATRICIA FELS The OcTagOn is The high-schOOl newspaper Of sacramenTO cOunTry Day. iTs purpOse is TO prOviDe a reliable sOurce Of infOrmaTiOn On evenTs cOncerning The high schOOl anD TO fOcus On TOpics Of significance anD general inTeresT in OrDer TO infOrm anD enTerTain The enTire schOOl cOmmuniTy. The sTaff sTrives fOr accuracy anD freeDOm frOm bias in iTs sTOries. significanT errOrs will be nOTeD anD cOrrecTeD. The OcTagOn shall publish maTerial ThaT The sTaff Deems in The besT inTeresT Of The schOOl cOmmuniTy. The sTaff recOgnizes The impOrTance Of The reaDership’s having accuraTe anD reliable infOrmaTiOn in OrDer TO be well infOrmeD anD On which TO base DecisiOns anD OpiniOns. The OcTagOn will publish all Timely anD relevanT news, subjecT TO The fOllOwing excepTiOns: ObsceniTy; slanDerOus Or libelOus maTerial; maTerial cOnTrary TO The besT inTeresTs Of The schOOl cOmmuniTy, as juDgeD by The newspaper sTaff anD aDviser.

eDiTOrials shall be vOTeD On by The enTire sTaff. cOlumns anD cOmmenTaries shall be clearly labeleD as such anD represenT The OpiniOn Of The auThOr Only.

in The inTeresT Of represenTing all pOinTs Of view, leTTers TO The eDiTOr shall be publisheD, space permiTTing, unless OTherwise requesTeD by The auThOr. all leTTers musT be signeD anD cOnfOrm TO The abOve resTricTiOns On publisheD maTerial. The sTaff reTains The righT TO make changes in grammar anD puncTuaTiOn anD TO abriDge leTTers fOr space cOnsiDeraTiOns.

EDITORIAL: You can’t ‘celebrate good students’ without publishing the honor roll


he honor roll is meant to recognize students who achieve high grades: a 3.7 or higher GPA for a place on the high honor roll or a 3.3-3.6 GPA for the honor roll. And to celebrate these students, the school has been publishing the honor roll in the school’s Friday email (and before that in the school’s paper version of “Highlights”) for years. But the school stopped publishing honor roll students as of spring 2016. Instead, the school now sends certificates to students who have earned their place on what used to be the public honor roll. But how can students be truly recognized for their academic achievements if no one even knows they’ve earned a spot on the honor rolls? It’s because of this that the school should publicize honor roll winners again. The honor roll becomes a pointless system if it fails to

do what it was created to do: “celebrate good students,” as head of high school Brooke Wells said. Yet the administration believes that its removal of honor roll publication is good for highschool students’ morale, since publishing it makes students who didn’t make the lists feel bad. Well then, why doesn’t the middle school practice this as well? The middle school still publishes who made honor and high honor roll. And if middleschool students can handle the emotional toll of not making the honor roll, high schoolers should be able to. Colleges don’t even pay attention to honor roll; rather, they look at grades on students’ transcripts, according to college counselor Jane Bauman. In other words, the honor roll may not mean very much to begin with, but it means even less when it isn’t publicized for the community. Sure, a student and

their parents will know of the student’s academic achievements when that honorroll certificate arrives in the mail But students are missing what really matters: enjoying the recognition that comes with accomplishment. It’s similar to when sophomore Sophie Naylor was announced to have won first place for her painting at the Crocker Art Museum Youth Art Month, or when it was announced that Chardonnay Needler won gold at Golden Empire for her solo. And when students accomplish other achievements, they’re announced so these students can be acknowledged for their hard work and excellence. So why shouldn’t grades be honored the same way? If the school doesn’t want to return to publishing the honor roll, then why not just scrap it altogether? Because at this point, the honor roll is little more than a small, disposable piece of paper.

It’s Monday morning. You look outside and see that spring has arrived. So you open the shorts drawer that has been in the back of your mind since fall. What you find is a combination of shorts that are either too short, too wide, too tight or too long. After 15 minutes of frantically pulling out shorts and refolding them, you find that one pair of khakis which all males have worn at least once. You try them on, and they’re the perfect length. But they’re wide - so wide that you need a belt. Once the belt is on, the shorts fit. However, the belt is uncomfortable. And once you put your shirt on, your stomach has a rigid shape. Do you take the belt off and hold your pants up all day, or feel uncomfortable with a leather strap around your waist? I ask this question every year at the beginning of spring. The majority of the time, I decide to wear the waist-cinching loop and spend the entire day adjusting my shirt and pants. As Jerry Seinfeld said, one solution to my problem would be to wear sweatpants every day, sending the message to the world that I have given up and can’t compete in normal society and showing everyone that since I’m miserable, I might as well be comfortable. The more logical choice is to fight the belt industry. Belts have been used since ancient Egyptian times, both showing a person’s political status and holding up his loincloth. Wake up, everyone! We’re not living in the ancient world. We have the technology and the craftsmanship to build elastics into all pants. Or designers could add two straps to tie onto the undergarments. These would hold the pants in place without making one’s waist uncomfortable. However, the best solution is to find the belt’s biggest competitor and support it until belts are driven out of the market. And that competitor is the suspender. I learned about suspenders when I was in a performance of “Bye Bye Birdie.” In the part, I had to sing and dance on stage while wearing light blue overalls. In costume I discovered that my range of motion was greatly increased and that the double straps actually kept my pants up better than the cursed demon noose ever had. So this spring I plan to buy my first pair of suspenders, hopefully inspiring a change in male fashion that will lead to a large variety of formal comfort clothes. This change might include fitted shirts that do not need to be tucked in and removable tags that come off with a slight pull. And while they’re at it, why not design bow ties that stick to shirts with velcro?

CAMPUS CORNER How do you like the spring break schedule change?

Who do you think will win March Madness?

The (two-week break) makes it tough for baseball to fit in all the games because the other schools’ spring breaks don’t coincide with ours. Having one week removes that problem.

Last year during spring break, I took a big trip to the East Coast to tour UMich, Brandeis, GW, Georgetown, NYU, Columbia, Boston College, Boston University, Northeastern, UChicago and Brown because I needed to start narrowing down my schools. One week makes it much harder to find time to tour colleges.

Everyone who is saying UCLA is going to win is delusional. They aren’t even going to make it out of the Elite Eight! People hear the name Lonzo Ball and hop on the UCLA hype train. He’s a good player, but he’s young. This will be his first real test.

I’m rooting for North Carolina. It’s the most exciting sporting event out there, and I think that the best team comes out on top. I think it’s great that UC Davis got in, but I expect them to get killed against Kansas.






March 21, 2017



Doughnut delight Crazy colors, fascinating flavors, grand garnishes: Baker’s Donuts has it all When it was our turn, we still had no idea what to get. Fortunately, the nice lady behind the counter helped us pick out a mix of their most popular specialty and traditional doughnuts, which range from 85 cents to $4. Even though Baker’s Donuts has indoor and outdoor seating, most customers just take their doughnuts to go. We followed suit and drove home to our impending sugar rush. We began with the Reese’s croissant dough-

Blue Hippo


Strawberries and Cream Sandwich


hether it requires waking up at 4 a.m. or driving halfway across an island, I’m always down for a doughnut adventure. So I assembled my team of juniors - our doughnut expert, Harkirat Lally, our photographer, Nina Dym, and my brother Bryce - and we set off for Baker’s Donuts (5880 Florin Rd.). The only information I had been given about Baker’s Donuts was that it “is in the hood and makes cool-looking doughnuts.” I had never heard of the place, so I assumed they were a new shop hopping on the social-media hype train of visually appealing, over-the-top (but impractical) food. And what do you know - Baker’s Donuts did have an Instagram with pictures of vibrantly colored, excessively decorated doughnuts. But this isn’t some year-old startup. Baker’s Donuts just celebrated its 32nd anniversary at the end of February. So when we arrived at the community-favorite shop at 8 a.m., I wasn’t surprised that the line was almost out the door. As the four of us waited in line, we tried to decide which doughnuts to choose from what seemed like an endless selection. They had everything from croissant doughnuts to ice-cream doughnuts to breakfast sandwiches (with a glazed doughnut taking the place of what’s usually a bagel).

TASTY TREATS Above (Clockwise from top left): Ube-frosted with Captain Crunch, red velvet and Reese’s Puffs. Right: Junior Bryce Longoria sizes up the Matcha with Fruity Pebbles. PHOTOS BY NINA DYM

Unsurprisingly, both of them said they would order it again, while Nina and I deemed it just right. Our first cereal doughnut was a traditional doughnut base with an ube (purple yam) frosting and topped with Cap’n Crunch cereal. The purple frosting and Cap’n Crunch topping made it one of the most visually appealing in the shop. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as appealing to the tastebuds. The ube lacked flavor and the Cap’n Crunch was overpowering, leaving something to be desired. Our second cereal doughnut was a matchatea-glazed doughnut topped with Fruity Pebbles. Although it was a step above the ube, the

Reese’s Croissant nut, topped with a chocolate and peanut-butter drizzle. The croissant base was definitely much lighter and flakier than a normal doughnut base but didn’t leave an overpowering croissant taste. “I’m usually not a fan of Reese’s, but I really like this,” Bryce said. All four of us agreed we would get it again, and it’s a must-have for Reese’s lovers. Next up was the Thai tea ice cream, sandwiched in between a traditional glazed doughnut. Nina, an avid fan of Thai tea, was the only one of us who said she’d get it again, rating it a high nine out of 10. Although the rest of us weren’t big fans, we agreed it is definitely a good alternative if you are looking to change it up from the traditional vanilla ice cream. Then, we moved onto our red velvet cake doughnut, which was ardently requested by Harkirat and Bryce.

matcha still lacked flavor. “We’re basically eating a plain doughnut with Fruity Pebbles,” I said to my fellow taste testers, who nodded in agreement. Just like the Thai tea, Nina was the only one who would get it again. Next up was the blue hippo doughnut, named after its sky-blue icing, topped with crumbled Oreos. Not knowing what the icing was going to taste like, we had seventh graders J.T. Longoria

and Jared McCain sample it first. “It’s kind of minty,” J.T. said. “It tastes like toothpaste,” Nina replied. “I kind of like toothpaste,” Jared added. I like toothpaste, too, but for brushing my teeth, not on my doughnuts. The combination of the sweet Oreos and the minty icing wasn’t appealing, resulting in a unanimous vote to never get the blue hippo again. After three disappointing doughnuts, we needed to end on a high note, so we opted for another Reese’s doughnut, this time with a traditional doughnut base filled with peanut butter and chocolate. Like its croissant relative, the traditional Reese’s hit the spot. It had just the right amount of chocolate - sweet, but not too sweet. For me, Baker’s Donuts fills a niche. Would I go there the next time I’m craving a traditional chocolate or glazed doughnut? No. I would go to my lifelong-favorite shop, Marie’s Donuts. Would I go to Baker’s Donuts to get cool-looking doughnuts for my friends? Absolutely!

Thai Tea Ice Cream Sandwich

Punny dish names and fresh ingredients create an authentic ‘Waffle Experience’ BY DAVID SITU With dish names like Praise the Lard, Farmer in the Dell, Cheeses Gone Wild and Pig Latin, The Waffle Experience is one of the most unusual restaurants I’ve ever visited. The Waffle Experience is a brunch restaurant that is open from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at two locations: one in Folsom (13405 Folsom Blvd., Suite 950) and one in Sacramento (4391 Gateway Park Blvd., Suite 650). My family and I chose to visit the

OPEN UP! Freshman David Situ has Found the Beef and is anxious to eat it. Photo used by permission of Situ

location in Folsom for lunch, as it was the closer of the two, and, from what I saw online, had more interesting decor. The restaurant gives off a natural, farm-to-fork vibe with the staggered wood planks on the walls along with wood-block signs of various inspirational phrases about enjoying life. Several walls have chalkboard paint on them, on which the current specials are displayed. There is also another board in the back, where guests can write their names on the wall. As soon as I walked in, I was greeted by the delicious smell of freshly cooked waffles along with rows of filled tables. However, I was also greeted with a rather unpleasant wait time. The hostess informed us that there was currently a 40-minute wait. Fortunately, a table opened up in about 30 minutes, and we were quickly seated. After seating us and serving water, she explained that The Waffle Experience restaurants use fresh, organic farm-to-fork ingredients. Their namesake waffles are made fresh each day with a unique batter that makes them thicker than normal ones. In addition to their main dishes, the restaurant also introduces two

MASTERPIECE David’s father ordered Farmer in the Dell ($15), a plate of country fried steak, eggs, kale and roasted tomato, topped with country gravy and white cheddar alongside a cracked pepper herb waffle. Photo by David Situ

new special dishes every two weeks. One is based on sweet flavors, while the other is based on savory ones. Currently, the menu has a total of 13 main-course options with seven being designated as “Two Hands Required.” There are four options for children and three dessert options. But the best part of the menu is the names of the different dishes. Most of them are plays on words, such as Eggcellent and We Found the Beef. I found them all highly amusing, and it was funny having to say such ridiculous orders aloud to the waiter.

I decided to order We Found the Beef ($15), a “Two Hands Required” option that consisted of a beef patty with bacon, cheddar, onion jam, arugula, tomato, shaved onion and basil aioli, sandwiched between a pair of fresh herb waffles. My mother ordered the current special, Budd-Ahh Belly ($14), a vinaigrette-glazed grilled pork belly, served with eggs, cabbage slaw, Thai peanut sauce, ginger and toasted sesame seeds on top of a ginger herb waffle. All the food was presented in an

appetizing and appealing way and tasted just as good as it looked. It was obvious that the ingredients, especially the waffles, were fresh and had been prepared recently. The portions seemed average, but they ended up being a lot more filling than they seemed. The waffles had a distinct flavor, and I could really distinguish the different spices in each. And all of the dishes’ flavors blended well. The service was also a highlight. The staff was knowledgeable about how and where they got their ingredients and were able to easily explain the details to my family. In addition, there were multiple monitors on the walls that showed cooks making the food. The most unpleasant part of my experience, the wait time, seemed to be caused by the weather. The Folsom location has an outdoor eating area, but it was closed due to rain while we were there. And the prices were a little too high. Most items on the menu were in the $12 to $16 range - not outrageous but still not cheap. Overall, The Waffle Experience is a fitting name for an original restaurant with good food and service. My family and I will definitely be going back!




March 21, 2017

Ren Faire: Retiring art teacher reminisces about script-writing, coaching, many supplies (continued from page 1)

breaks and lunches are used for Faire preparation: teaching the guild mem“She asked if I would be interested bers their respective duties. in coming up with ideas for a RenaisFor instance, Kelly helps the stusance Faire,” Kelly said. dents in the apothecary guild create “I am (the) type of person who their potions, cloved oranges and has not learned to say ‘no,’ and taking other items that will be sold for the (this) on has expanded who I am as a price of a song, dance or joke at the person and teacher.” Faire. According to Kelly and Kuipers, “It has taken a toll on me,” Kelly the Faire has alsaid. ways been “over “My feet ache; the top.” my body aches “The scope of every day (of ) the the preparation is week before (the ‘TAKING (THIS) ON quite impressive,” Faire). HAS EXPANDED WHO Kuipers said. It’s for her deI AM AS A PERSON “What I thought votion to the Faire was particularly that Kuipers dePATRICIA KELLY, impressive (about scribed Kelly as ART TEACHER Kelly’s role) was someone who is that she doesn’t see “certainly dedicatall these kids; she’s ed, creative (and) not a core-class middle-school teach- adaptable (with a) good sense of huer, yet she takes this on and facilitates mor” but who “still runs a tight ship.” what goes on.” Over the years, Kelly has made That’s not to say her job is easy. running the Faire more efficient. Starting in January, Kelly begins “I’ve worked to streamline the spending her lunchtimes helping sev- amount of work by making things enth graders with their roles in the more organized for myself, but this Renaissance Faire play, which include has taken a lot of time,” Kelly said. the Lord, Lady, Jester and Town Cri“I have lists of supplies to order, er. boxes with supplies for each guild, As the Faire draws closer, all her inventory, storage, etc.”

Plastic stretch wrap for cleanup, replacement ribbons for the Maypole, four bags of candy (i.e. Dum Dums and Smarties), gold coins, Hacky Sacks, wooden squares, wooden rounds, string, leather (25 pounds!), bear claws, skull beads, 40 miniature potion bottles, soap-making supplies (glycerin, molds, fragrances), small charms, fabric, dried herbs, dried flowers, wristbands, drawstring bags, flower wreaths, peacock feathers, hair clips, copper wire, nylon and clay are just some of the materials on her long list. Kelly also writes the bulk of the script for the play, with the majority of her inspiration coming from research and the book “Good Masters, Sweet Ladies,” which she found one day in the SCDS library. “I never thought I could write a script, but it was fun,” Kelly said. “I did a lot of research, and ‘Good Masters, Sweet Ladies’ helped to build other ideas around it. I also would see things in old movies I thought would be funny to add.” In his role as king, Kuipers adds comical elements ranging from raps, sonnets and odes to iPad games. This year Kuipers added an impromptu sonnet to Kelly that moved her to tears.

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AT THE GAMES GUILD Chris Kuipers, middle-school history teacher and Renaissance Faire king, tries out quoits (a game from the Middle Ages, similar to horseshoes) at the games guild during the Faire on March 10. PHOTO USED BY PERMISSION OF JUDITH BASAYA

Certainly, each year has had its Nonetheless, one thing is certain: own nuances. Kuipers and Kelly will never forget “The heart of what we do is still the their experiences in the Renaissance same,” Kuipers said. Faire. “It’s not a process of evolution, but “I’ll always treasure and carry this each year it’s its own variety, a varia- with me to other places, maybe my tion on a theme, so to speak. grandkids’ classrooms,” Kelly said. “The core of the script remains the “Working with the students and same, but (each year) we can play off watching their joy as they perform, the students’ particular talents.” make potions in the apothecary, barFor example, this year the MP ter with sixth graders for a ceramic Room skit included a skilled juggler pendant in the merchant guild, (are) and stick-maker, seventh grader Aran taken to the pillory, use the marshClayton. mallow crossbow Yet in the comin games guild, ening years, Kuipers joy handmade jelly expects the Faire to on a piece of bread ‘EACH YEAR (THE change. from the avern, in“I do think over teract with lower FAIRE) IS ITS OWN the next few years schoolers and stuVARIETY, A VARIAwe’ll see it evolve dents in costume TION ON A THEME.’ into something and the king (Kuidifferent,” Kuipers pers) - I’ll never CHRIS KUIPERS, said. forget that.” HISTORY TEACHER “It’ll take on its Kuipers had own personality similar sentiments. and flavor.” “I enjoy the lowThat’s because next year’s sev- er-school kids coming by, interacting enth-grade history teacher William with them and watching the seventh Crabb and incoming art teacher graders interact with them,” Kuipers Alexis Grinbold will step in and fill said. Kuipers’s and Kelly’s spots. As Kelly said, it’s a day for stu“There’s (also) talk about whether dents to, for once in their lives, play or not we should blend it, keep it, or at school. make it part of World Cultures Day,” And it’s a day that no one ever forKuipers said. gets.


March 21, 2017




Campus ‘Indy’ reveals the shady world of a dedicated hat lover BY MARIGOT FACKENTHAL


ou’ve seen him around campus. He’s tall. He has long hair. He rides a motorbike. He wears hood-

ies. And a hat. The hat is the main thing. In fact, I could have just mentioned the hat. That’s right - I’m talking about Eivind Sommerhaug, the sophomore often referred to as “Indiana Jones.” Although most are aware of “The Hat,” many would be surprised to know that it’s part of a decade-old tradition. “I saw the (Indiana Jones) movies when I was young, and I

was like, ‘This is amazing,’” Sommerhaug said. “So I asked my mom for a cheap, normal-looking Indiana Jones hat. “That was in second grade. And I’ve just been wearing it every day since then.” I know what you must be thinking - literally every day? And the answer is, as Sommerhaug will tell you, yes - literally every day. “I don’t wear it inside my house,” he said. “If I wear it too much, all the sweat and such (on my head) gets stuck, and it’s not good. “But anywhere outside or on campus, I wear it.” How has Sommerhaug kept his hat in such good condition for so long? Well, he hasn’t been wearing the same hat the entire time - he purchases a new hat every year. For his most recent hat, Sommerhaug wanted something a little more authentic. So instead of buying a generic Indiana Jones hat, he tracked down a company that was closer to the real Indy-hat-making process: the Penman Hat Company. The company is run by John Penman, who appren-

ticed under Steve Delk and Marc Kitter of the Adventurebilt Hat Company - the one that made Indy’s hats for the movies. “When I saw who the hats were made by, I was like, “This is perfect!” Sommerhaug said. Penman’s authentic hats aren’t cheap - Sommerhaug’s last one cost him about $300. But he said that the high-quality material and craftsmanship justify the price. “He hand-crafts everything,” Sommerhaug said. “You have to input the size of your head and everything. It’s all designed around you. You choose the style, the material, the size, everything. “My last hat was rabbit fur.” Unsurprisingly, Sommerhaug has received his share of comments on the striking hat. “Not at this school, but a lot of people that I see out and about do compliment it,” Sommerhaug said. “That’s always cool. They don’t usually say anything Indiana-Jones-related; they’ll just say, ‘That’s a nice hat,’ or something like that.” Although he isn’t wearing the hat to provoke and observe reactions, Sommerhaug said that he’s noticed patterns over his 10 years under the brim. “A lot of African-American people have commented on my hat,” he said. “It’s just what I’ve noticed. (People of ) any other ethnicity just pass by, but whenever there’s an Af-

THE BEGINNING OF A LEGACY Above: Second grader Eivind Sommerhaug in one of his first hats. Left: Eighth grader Sommerhaug in his most recent rabbit-fur hat. PHOTOS USED BY PERMISSION OF SOMMERHAUG

rican-American person, they’re usually the ones who compliment (my hat).” Unfortunately, right now, Sommerhaug walks campus in his elusive hatless form. “My sister actually lost my last hat,” he said, “so that’s why I haven’t been wearing it.” The disaster occurred while Sommerhaug and his sister, eighth grader Elise, were riding home from school on their motorbike. “It just flew off. We looked back for it, but we weren’t able to find it,” he said. Consequently, these past several months have been the first time since second grade Sommerhaug hasn’t worn his famous hat to school. “It’s not uncomfortable, but I’d

Teachers: Worldly activist seeks to pass on insight gained from previous schools (continued from page 1)

“So I have always wanted to learn more about what other cultures, cui“I love to write literary fictions, sine and schools of thought are like. which takes up most of my free time.” “I have just never really lost that Hinojosa has had two novels pub- fascination.” lished and a few short stories. He is Hinojosa’s traveling also benefits currently working on a third novel as his writing. a part of his coursework. “I draw a lot from my travels for Hinojosa’s first book, “The Last my writing and also in my teaching,” Lawsons,” is about a suburban Amer- Hinojosa said. “I think that getting a ican family coming to terms with its broad array of different types of writtragic and shameful past, while his ers is important. second book, “The Conception of “In the States we read a lot of Zachary Muse,” is the story of the American writers and a good amount mysteries surrounding the birth of a of British writers, but there are people fictional character, Zachary Muse. writing all across the world!” In addition to writing, Hinojosa Hinojosa intends to focus his classlikes going to reading sessions by fa- es on stories that are told by people mous authors with his friends. whose voices are underrepresented, “Some amazing world-class au- such as people of color, members of thors from across the the LGBTQ+ comworld come to the munity, immigrants, university,” Hinojonon-Americans and sa said. “I recently women. ‘I LIKE BEING listened to a reading “I want to show ABLE TO GUIDE from a Dominican students marginalwriter, whose book I ized voices that aren’t STUDENTS teach in my class. at the center of the THROUGH THE “That was a special current literary landRESEARCH PROCESS treat.” scape,” he said. AND THEIR OWN Although Hinojo“Those voices are INTELLECTUAL sa has lived in Amerslightly more interica since 2010, he esting to me than the JOURNEYS’ spent his childhood canon or traditional DAMANY FISHER, and teenage years texts.” FUTURE HISTORY in Peru, Chile and While Hinojosa TEACHER Mexico. will join the comAs an adult, Himunity from Iowa, nojosa moved to Fisher is making his Hong Kong, where way over from New he worked for four years, and then to England. Rwanda, where he volunteered longFisher currently teaches at Phillips term. Academy Andover, a boarding school Hinojosa attributes his love of outside of Boston. traveling to curiosity. There he teaches U.S. History, At“Growing up as a kid in Latin lantic World History (the history of America made me realize that the the interaction among the peoples world is really big,” Hinojosa said. and empires bordering the Atlantic

TRAVELING TEAM Future English teacher Jason Hinojosa and his wife, Dana, traveled to the Sultan Ahmed Mosque (the Blue Mosque) in Istanbul, Turkey. PHOTO USED BY PERMISSION OF HINOJOSA

Ocean rim) and a civil rights elective. Next year Fisher plans to continue teaching his civil rights elective in addition to freshman history, World Cultures and U.S. History. What drew Fisher to SCDS was its similarity to Phillips Academy. “(Both allow) teachers to design their own course and teach in their own way,” Fisher said. Fisher has been married for seven years to his wife Danica and has two children, a two-and-a-half-year-old son and a five-month-old daughter. “They keep me busy all the time,” he said with a laugh. But in Fisher’s free time he loves to play basketball, work out, go out to eat and read. “I also love to sometimes just veg

out in front of the television whenever I have a free moment!” Fisher said. “My ideal evening is to go home, order pizza and just put on the game.” Although Fisher lives in New England, he is a hardcore Raiders fan. “Raider Nation, baby!” Fisher said. “It’s been hell living out in New England these past four years as a Raider fan. “I endured a lot of ridicule.” Fisher is currently teaching at a private boarding school, but his journey getting there was very “unconventional,” he said. Before he taught at Phillips Academy, Fisher was an instructor at Mt. San Antonio College, a community college in Southern California. “This was really interesting because

prefer wearing it,” he said. “I used to think it was there when it wasn’t in the beginning, but not so much anymore.” Luckily, a new hat is already in the works. He ordered it from the company back in November, and expects it to arrive in May. “I can tell (the Penman hatter) is really busy because the hats take so long,” Sommerhaug said. Although he liked the rabbit fur, this time Sommerhaug wanted something more water-resistant, so he paid an extra $100 to upgrade to beaver fur. Sommerhaug admitted that he’s never met anyone else with a clothing quirk like his. “It’s just something I picked up,” he said. the contrast between the two schools couldn’t be greater in terms of resources and level of student preparation,” Fisher said. “I was teaching a lot of students who weren’t prepared for college and were struggling academically.” On the other hand, he said, at Phillips there were a lot of wealthy kids who had been educated in independent schools their entire lives. That contrast between the two schools broadened his perspective and made him a better teacher, he said. Fisher also believes that contrast gave him valuable insights into the disparities in our educational system. “Frankly, those who have the most get the most, and those who have the least get the least,” Fisher said. “It has been kind of depressing seeing how little of our society is properly educated.” Fisher said his role as a teacher is more a guide than an instructor. “I like being able to guide students through the research process and their own intellectual journeys,” he said. “The skills that I teach them will be able to propel them to do much bigger projects beyond college and into the professional world.” Fisher also wants the community to know that he is a work in progress. “I am a person who is constantly seeking to better myself through my teaching and development,” Fisher said. Fisher calls education a “joint enterprise” rather than a one-sided job. “It is one that requires equal participation between student and teacher,” he said. “The best learning environment is where the teacher learns from the student.” Head of high school Brooke Wells is very excited about the new faculty. “We have a new team in place!” Wells shouted excitedly.




March 21, 2017


START Do you like STEM?


The arts?



The humanities?





Do you want an in-depth course?

Do you like biology?


MB Public Affairs: intern

Do you want to be paid?





“I was doing desk work. It was cool knowing that the spreadsheets and transcripts I was creating were used in reports that clients paid big money for. “I learned things that most people don’t realize about politics, like how a campaign would go about collecting research for an ad.” —senior Adam Dean

Engineering Possibilities in College “We had a week-long project to build a boat for two people out of cardboard and duct tape, and at the end we raced the other teams. “They had to function with two people in them, and, of course, some broke.” —senior Quin LaComb

Cal State Fullerton: Engineering Innovation “Our final project was to build a spaghetti bridge, so we had to figure out how much tension different types of spaghetti could hold and then decide which to use. “The final day we tested how much weight everyone’s bridges held.” —senior Shriya Nadgauda

Do you like math? Yes


Breakthrough Sacramento: volunteer

Syrendell Summer Camp volunteer

“(We were) given tasks that (teachers) needed done, like getting posters, and then we would give out snacks. Or at least I worked the afternoon shift, so I gave out snacks. If you work the morning shift, you give out breakfast.” —junior Nina Dym

“I love the mythical aspect of Waldorf and the way (students) are so open to imagination and stories. “I’m always amazed at how creative and responsible the kids are with the hammers, nails and wood-shaving tools.” —senior Anny Schmidt

Do you want to go on a service trip? Yes

National Student Leadership Conference: Biotechnology “We made ‘roboroaches,’ which were cockroaches that we attached electrodes to so that the impulses sent to their antennae controlled how they moved.” —sophomore Allison Zhang

Do you play an instrument? Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth: Cryptology

Yale Summer Program in Astrophysics

“At the end we went on a scavenger hunt around the campus, and we had to use all that we had learned about different cyphers to decrypt messages hidden in different places. “I cried so hard the last day. I thought the world was going to end.” —junior Amalie Fackenthal

“Our final project was to take all of the images of our asteroid we’d collected from various observatories and use codes we’d written over the course of the program to find the orbital elements of our asteroid. “We submitted our data to the Minor Planet Center.” —senior Marigot Fackenthal

Summer Pre-College Advanced Placement/Early Admission: Introduction to Electrical & Computer Engineering and Sound Recording “In my sound-recording class, one of our projects was to record ourselves reading a poem and then edit it and add some music. Carnegie Mellon has a recording studio, so we had to set up all the wires to the microphone and set up the software to record ourselves.” —senior Shriya Nadgauda

National Youth Leadership Forum: Engineering & Technology “We put together circuits, made 3D models online, constructed model zip lines and had a final biotech design project that my team presented. I made a prosthetic turtle fin out of paper.” —junior Sonja Hansen

Cazadero Music Camp “You have a unit of 12 or so girls (or boys), and that is your family for the session. Each unit can earn points throughout the week, like find the Caz bear, a bear that’s hidden in the camp, to win an icecream and pool party at the end of the week.” —senior Anny Schmidt

Sorry, nothing here for you. Move along now.



Do you want to be in Sacramento?



A job or volunteer opportunity?





Dream Volunteers Service Trips: Costa Rica “We worked at a coffee farm every day. Organic coffee farms are a lot more work in general to maintain, more so than conventional farms. Most of our time was dedicated to distributing the compost - broza on each individual coffee plant. “I learned a lot about sustainable energy and consumerism and organic coffee farms that I never would have learned about had I not gone on this trip.” —college freshman Julia Owaidat

“We ran a simulation once where I was put as the head of defense in Asia and Europe, and I had to be careful because we ran black ops operations. And we had to make sure our president - who was my friend, Lucy - had high ratings and still kept relations with other countries.” —senior Maryjane Garcia

“I learned a lot about breaking rules and getting out of my comfort zone with my writing. We did writing with no punctuation and poems made from signs all around campus and learned how to make zines.” —senior Austin Talamantes


“The biggest Fire Phoenix (a sculpture made of branches and hay covered in gasoline) I’ve ever seen was 23 feet wide and 15 feet tall. My first year I saw it, I wanted to be a person who gets to shoot it with a flaming arrow. It wouldn’t be a Fire Phoenix if it wasn’t on fire.” —senior Daniel Hernried

School for Ethics and Global Leadership

California State Summer School for the Arts: Creative Writing

Do you like languages?

Camp Augusta counselor

Yes No No


Russian Language Institute Summer Intensive Program

Concordia Language Villages: Russian

“I did only four weeks, but you can also do eight. We took a field trip to D.C. to the Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens because it had a lot of Russian art.” —senior Nicole Wolkov

“It’s a simulated village where you’re immersed in whatever language you choose. It’s very much of a camp environment with the added benefit of language courses.” —senior Nicole Wolkov

National Institute of American History and Democracy “By the end of the program, we all had made new friends and were happy to have met. The program was inclusive; everybody was willing to meet a new person and be friends.” —sophomore Brandy Riziki

Octagon 2016-17 issue 6  
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