Vol. XXIV ISSUE III Polytechnic School :: Pasadena, California
October 14, 2011
On the Internet: polypawprint.com
POLY ALUM WINS NOBEL! !!Bruce Beutler ‘75 received the No-
bel Prize for Physiology or Medicine on October 3, 2011. A precocious student, he graduated from Poly in three years. By LINA VADLAMANI News editor
NOBEL PRIZE: Polytechnic alumnus Bruce Beutler ‘75 won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his pioneering work in the study of immonology. Beutler shared the prize with two researchers in his field.
Poly premieres AP Studio Art course !!This year, gifted student artists
have the opportunity to take part in Poly’s first Advanced Placement Studio Art Class. By NOAH KIM Assistant news editor Advanced Placement Studio Art is being offered for the first time in the Upper School Visual Arts curriculum this fall to an enrollment of 16 students. Taught by Arnor Bieltvedt, Chair of the Upper School Visual Arts Department, the collegelevel course offers a rigorous curriculum that includes an intense study of art history, a close examination of the techniques utilized by specific artists and the implementation of these methods. The idea of introducing an AP Studio Art class to Poly germinated four years ago during Bieltvedt’s first year as a member of the Upper School faculty. During that time, Bieltvedt and artisticallymotivated upperclassmen discussed the potential of forming a more serious course devoted solely to the creation of visual art. Through Bieltvedt’s efforts, this goal was partially fulfilled with the creation of the Advanced Drawing and Painting classe, where students were granted more artistic freedom. However, students in this course still lacked a sufficient amount of time to complete a comprehensive portfolio. “If I wanted to finish more than two or three detailed projects over the course of the semester, I’d have to come into the art studio in my own time,” says senior Katherine Peng who has been a student in all three levels of Poly’s Drawing and Painting classes. This year, Bieltvedt took advantage of the Upper School’s new schedule and managed to incorporate the AP Studio Art class into the curriculum. The
students are required to complete at least one of the studio arts foundation classes and two visual arts electives. Additionally, they must obtain Bieltvedt’s permission in order to register.
much to you personally,” says Peng. Over time, Bieltvedt hopes that the class will enhance Poly’s emphasis on the visual arts. “I’m very optimistic about this current class. We’re off to a great start. It’s a
Junior Rachel Ng is one of the 16 students in the Upper School’s f irst AP Studio Art class, which meets on the North Campus. The class meets four times per week and maintains the continuity and breadth of a traditional academic course. Students are expected to spend at least one hour per day working on their art at home or after school. Instead of taking an AP exam in May, participating students strive to complete a portfolio containing about 30 completed works of art, which will be sent to the College Board for evaluation. Bieltvedt’s main role is that of helping these students develop their own personal creative styles. The class also takes part in group critiques, where members gather to praise, criticize and comment on the works of their peers. “The group critiques are probably the most helpful parts of the class. It’s great to get an objective opinion after spending hours and hours perfecting a piece that means so
great group of students, and they’re all incredibly self-motivated and highly supportive of each other.”
Only 826 individuals have won the Nobel Prize since the award’s inauguration in 1901. Poly alumnus Bruce A. Beutler ’75 joined this list on October 3, receiving the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for “discoveries concerning the activation of innate immunity,” according to the Nobel Prize committee. Beutler is Poly’s first graduate to ever receive this honor. Beutler shared half of the prize, valued at $1.45 million, with former research director of the National Center for Scientific Research in Strasbourg, France, Jules A. Hoffman. The other half of the prize was awarded to deceased cell biologist Ralph M. Steinman, who passed away from pancreatic cancer on September 30—a fact that was not discovered by the prize committee until after the decision was made. Currently serving as the chair of the Department of Genetics at the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego, Beutler is in the process of moving to the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where he will be the director of the Center for the Genetics of Host Defense. The research conducted by all three laureates solved mysteries about innate immunity—how the body’s primary line of defense recognizes and targets foreign bodies such as bacteria, viruses or parasites. In 1973, Steinman discovered dendritic cells, which help trigger the body’s adaptive immune system, and later studied the possibility of using dendriticcell therapy in treating cancer.
Hoffman first identified the importance of “Toll receptors” on the surface of the cells of fruit flies. These Toll receptors help to identify the presence of foreign bodies—Hoffman found that without the activation of the Toll gene, a successful immune defense is unlikely. Building on Hoffman’s discovery, Beutler’s breakthrough found “Toll-like” receptors in mice that could recognize a byproduct of bacteria, lipopolysaccharide, and trigger an inflammatory response. His discovery of Toll-like genes has prompted a flood of researchers to look for similar receptors that bind to other components of bacteria in both mice and humans, which could eventually develop into new treatments for diseases such as lupus or arthritis. According to the Nobel Committee, the three scientists’ work “has opened up new avenues for the development of prevention and therapy against infections, cancer and inflammatory diseases.” Beutler began at the Poly Upper School as a freshman in the fall of 1971 and graduated in three years with the class of 1974. Beutler went on to graduate in three years from the University of California at San Diego. He earned his doctorate at the University Of Chicago In his abbreviated time in Poly’s upper school, Beutler was not an active member of the Poly community. He did not participate in any sports, and classmates have described his presence at the school as “shadow-like.” There are no pictures in Oakleaves, his senior portrait included, in which Beutler is looking into the camera. The quotation that accompanied Beutler’s senior portrait in the yearbook came from existentialist author Albert Camus. “Life is the disease of matter,” Camus wrote, and to better understand this disease, Beutler has certainly endeavored.
An early look at the 2012 election
3 8 11
Exploring the Museum of Jurassic Technology
Controversial tactics: the dirty side of high school sports
Off the cuff: Male teacher fashion review
OPINION Billboard Hot 100
October 14, 2011
the paw print
By KEVIN CHU Opinion Editor
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta was born in the Upper West Side of New York City to a poor, Italian, Roman-Catholic family residing on the wages of an Internet entrepreneur. Never mind the eventual gender neutrality or vampish hairbows springing alongside lobsters and bird nests—we find a beginning to this story of voice, creation and fame. It was during her college years, when Germanotta began work for music producer Rob Fusari, that an identity was born. As the story goes, one of his autocorrected text messages to her changed the title of classic Queen tune “Radio Ga Ga” to Lady Gaga. An icon of unparalleled vision, devoid of well-endowed parentage or connection, is difficult to come by in an era of manufactured one-hit wonders. Although critical responses to Gaga’s work in the music, fashion and social realms are varied, she remains poised on the vanguard of pop culture and lambent on the stage of entertainment. Bearing the mark of retro Elizabethan lace and high, high heels, she remarked in a recent issue of V magazine on her understanding of the fashion industry, revealing a profundity nearly extinct within even the trade itself: “I myself can look at almost any hemline, silhouette, beadwork or heel architecture and tell you very precisely who designed it first, what French painter they stole it from, how many designers reinvented it after them and what cultural and musical movement parented the birth, death and resurrection of that particular trend.” If anything, Lady Gaga is a catalyst for change and an era of acceptance all to her own. Her male alter ego, Jo Calderone, embodies the extent to which the LGBT movement drives her performance towards a tangible criticism of modern society. Her hair is bleached, cut, slicked and sculpted to expose the danger of conformity and impose the beauty of difference. Her tattoos depict a dedication to her fan base and a deep reverence for the arts—a peace sign inspired by personal hero John Lennon and a German quote from poet Rainer Maria Rilke. Although surface glances call attention to her outlandish appearance or criticize her marketability contingent upon the “strange,” Gaga continues to fascinate the senses. She seems not to subscribe to insecurity, continuously pushing us--with a high face of theatricality--to value tolerance, visualize the unthinkable and regard the foreign and unknown with respect. Someone so keenly in touch with that inner monster of raw emotion repulses some, made uncomfortable by Gaga’s blazing onstage physical and cerebral synergy. We laugh, we applaud or we remain silent. But a single artist seldom redefines the world of pop culture so holistically and definitively as the Lady. Her influence has filtered down through multiple tiers of successful musical performers, her statements dare us to be bold—she is the walking model of imagination. With Gaga in the throne, we arise to spend time in our own dark corners of the human existence. -Kelsey Kawana
un a recycled techno beat that overuses bass, cue the asco’s third studio album: “Lasers.” Lupe was quoted in an catchy hook courtesy of some popular music artist exactly 14 interview referring to his Billboard Hot 100 #9 hit, “The seconds into the song, release the single under the main artShow Goes On”, “There’s nothing to really tell about that ist’s name and watch the song top the Billboard Hot 100. record, to be honest. I didn’t have nothing [sic] to do with The Billboard Hot 100 is the Holy Grail for our current that record - that was the label’s record. They gave me the generation’s aspiring pop, hip-hop and alternative musical stuff to rap about.” artists. This music-ranking chart focuses on “singles” released Basically, setting all means of originality aside, if one by artists and is updated weekly based on radio plays and has the privilege of featuring Bruno Mars’s high-pitched, sales. In other words, the Billboard Hot 100 is the home for recycled hook involving cheesy metaphors or Lil Wayne’s all the songs you hear on KIIS FM and at school dances. By annoyingly squeaky 25-second verse consisting of remarksnatching a top ranking on the Billboard Hot 100, any artist ably uncreative puns, you will have yourself a Hot 100 chart can achieve instant success and fame. Easier said than done? topper. There are ways to exploit the popular music industry Not if you adhere to my “Hot 100 Formula For Success.” – one just needs connections as well as discipline to avoid Step one to becoming a worldwide implementing anything original. The final attribute of a hit musical superstar is knowing the art single is the range behind the production of hit singles of appeal based on (the making of the “beat”). Ironically, The Billboard Hot 100 is truly who the artist is. the production of the song involves success a marvelous spectacle displaying Achieving no creativity whatsoever. If you mute in the modern muout all of the vocals on a typical Hot America’s incredibly lousy taste in music.” sic industry is like 100 single, you will hear nothing more winning a popularthan a redundant, electronic-influity contest in high enced dance beat that relies too heavschool. Everything ily on annoyingly familiar synthetics, broken down bass repmusical artists do affects how they are perceived by the etitions and machine-generated drum beats. These recycled public – the way they talk, the way they dress, and the way beats are an evident favorite of today’s hottest artists and have they carry themselves. Each of the popular and successful not failed any of them in their pursuit to top the Hot 100. artists topping the charts today each have their own unique, Once the production aspect is ready to go, the next step is to defining character. Wiz Khalifa is the tattooed stoner rapsecure the crucial big-name guest artist. per, Katy Perry is the pop star taking advantage of her sexPopular music of this generation is classified under a genre appeal, Lady Gaga is the eccentric, colorful and volatile inI call “Hip-Pop.” Hip-hop and Pop music have morphed todividual, Drake is the bearded, Canadian ladies’ man and gether to produce a new classification of music relying on LMFAO are the two weird-looking guys always dressed what is known as a “hook” from an already well-established like they are ready to attend a rave. featured artist. No matter what opinions you may have regarding these Collaborations are dominating the popular music industry few example artists, it’s undeniable that they possess a as statistics prove that the likelihood of achieving success on unique and likeable label that makes them admired by such the Hot 100 is increased tremendously with the addition of a a massive fan base. guest artist. Of the top 50 singles currently on the Hot 100, The music that dominates radio airwaves and jams the there is a whopping total of 31 songs that feature guest artists public media outlets today is so uninspired and derivative (62%). It is therefore a safe assumption that people listen to that it only makes logical sense to me to tuck it away and a popular hit single primarily due to the notable guest artist. classify it in a distinct category of its own: “popular music.” For those rising artists smart enough to fight for a collaboRather, make that “popular hooks played repetitively over ration project with some of the most popular artists in the unoriginal beats featuring famous and interesting so-called industry, success is imminent. ‘artists.’” However, if the featured hook is too lyrical or poetic, sucThe Billboard Hot 100 is truly a marvelous spectacle discess will not be achieved. In other words, the American public playing America’s incredibly lousy taste in music. To achieve is not interested in lyrical ingenuity or creativity in any shape success in today’s music industry, talent and originality are or form. A key example depicting this shameful truth in the neither recommended nor required. music industry is the complete “dumbing down” of Lupe Fi-
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Previewing the 2012 Presidential Election
By ANDREW LIFLAND Opinion editor
Congress’, a worrying sign for conservative candidates. But the real concerns for Republicans are the more subtle weakWith the Iowa Primary rapidly approaching, and presi- nesses their candidates exhibit, which have the potential to dential campaigning in full gear, optimism is high within undermine a promising 2012 presidential bid. the Republican Party. Stubbornly high unemployment and The first and most significant weakness is the political indeclining Obama approval ratings suggest that 2012 could experience of the Republican candidates. Romney can draw be an even better year for Republicans than 2010. It is clear on the experience of his failed 2008 presidential bid, but his that the Republican strategy will focus heavily on economic support among Republican voters continues to be lukewarm, issues. That strategy would seem to favor Republicans, but even though he is the only candidate who leads Obama in a President Obama actually has the biggest advantages in the head-to-head poll. race. Perry is unfamiliar with politics outside the state of TexAlthough conservatives are not entirely satisfied with the as—a fact made painfully obvious by his faltering perforcurrent candidates, New Jersey governor Chris Christie’s de- mances at the Republican debates. Some of his remarks— cision not to run means the field is almost certainly set. Three such as suggesting that Texas would treat Federal Reserve frontrunners have emerged: Mitt Romney and Rick Perry, Chairman Ben Bernanke “pretty ugly” were he ever to visit, long seen as the favorites, and Herman Cain, who surprised were acceptable in the smaller stage of Texas but have not political observers by tying for first place in the most recent gone over well nationally. polls. Cain has never held political office at all, and while his The three candidates differ greatly in political style, but all campaign is off to a good start, he is at a severe disadvantage point to their economic credentials as the key to their can- in name recognition and fundraising. didacy. Romney built his political career with the wealth he In contrast, Obama has proven to be a very skilled poliacquired as a highly successful businessman, and he ranks his tician, excelling at generating donations and activism from guidance of the 2002 Olympic Games to profitability as one large numbers of voters. Regardless of voters’ view of his job of his proudest accomplishments. performance, he has consistently projected a highly positive Perry frequently references the “economic miracle” in image to the American electorate: over 60% of voters describe Texas, as his state weathered the Great Recession better than him as caring and trustworthy. Romney, in comparison, has most. Outside critics have cast some doubt onto the valid- struggled to shed his cold and aloof public image. ity of this claim—pointing out that Texas’ job growth may Obama’s second big advantage is that he’s more moderhave had more to do with low wages ate than any of the Republican candidates. The Republican and rapid population growth than any candidates are forced to try skillful economic leadership—but it to outdo each other in their nevertheless forms the centerpiece of conservatism in order to Romney currently his campaign. win the nomination—any has a slight lead over Cain, probably the least likely of the views perceived as moderthree to win the nomination, also runs Obama in the polls, but the presi- ate are ruthlessly attacked. a business-oriented campaign, drawing In a recent debate Romney on his experience as CEO of Godfa- dent holds the crucial long-term criticized Perry for allowing ther’s Pizza (“A Pizza You Can’t Re- advantages. undocumented immigrants fuse!”) access to in-state tuition disAll three have one other common counts; Perry immediately attribute: they are Washington outsiddropped in the polls and was ers. None have ever served in Congress and all use strong forced to give a series of speeches tough on immigration. Reanti-government rhetoric in their speeches. publican office-seekers must strictly adhere to conservative At first glance, these candidates seem ideal fits for the principles to be taken seriously; in one debate, the candidates contemporary political climate, since Congress has histori- were asked if they would accept a $1 tax increase for a $10 cally low approval ratings and the economy is first and fore- spending cut. All said no. most in the minds of voters. But this advantage may not be as Obama has made an undeniably strong effort at bipargreat as it seems. Despite the sluggish economy, Americans tisanship and has been a moderate candidate over the past still prefer Obama’s economic solutions to the Republican year. His stances on the debt ceiling and tax increases have
included very real concessions to conservatives. Even his most liberal positions, cap-and-trade and the individual mandate for healthcare, would have been considered moderate only a few years ago. Voters have noticed; most Americans believe his attempts at compromise have been more serious than the GOP’s. And because Obama does not have to worry about a primary, he can continue to hold moderate stances without losing his liberal base to another Democratic candidate. Given the public disgust for the polarization in Washington, Obama’s more moderate positions will likely resonate more with voters than the uncompromising conservatism of the Republican candidates. Obama appears vulnerable as the president presiding over a slumping economy and a bitterly divided government. But
opposite route. Pygmy is a critique of us. The novel follows a troop of foreign teenage terrorists, sent from an unknown totalitarian state, raised to execute Operation Havoc, resulting in the fall of our enormous, stupid country. Each “operative” is sent to live with a host family in a Midwestern town, to pinpoint the weaknesses and develop an understanding of an average American. The lead operative, agent 67 (aka Pygmy), depicts life in a typical American family complete with typical (fat) American parents and children. We see America through the eyes of someone who has never known it before. Agent 67 visits Wal-Mart, goes to church and, most importantly, attends an American high school. Each new experience presents a different problem in the implementation of Operation Havoc. Narrated in broken English, Pygmy shows us what the real, corrupt and disgusting America looks like. Palahniuk therefore bravely begs the question, “What exactly is the real America?” This novel is a satirical and effective critique of American consumerism and culture, inspiring yet another question: “Is our fast-paced, dishonest country just as bad as Pygmy’s tyrannical and severe one?” Our country is very much an influential country, capable of accomplishing great things for the world. But instead, we have successfully destroyed the Middle East because of our insatiable hunger for foreign oil. We have created a monumental gap between the rich and the poor. We have sacrificed education and economic stability to pursue interests that are frankly, none of our business. 17% of American children are obese! Have we reached a point of no return? Palahniuk answers this question in a ridiculous and implausible novel. To those of you with weak stomachs, I would not recommend Pygmy. To the others, let me say that it is a twisted, yet hysterical story geared to cultivate thinking; it is a potent exposure of the grim truths of today’s America.
By SARAH WEINSTEIN Student contributor
The United States is very often glorified as a whimsical alternate universe, equipped with an abundance of resources and opportunities, led by a strong, just democratic government. America’s children play on the baseball diamond, while moms bake apple pie in the kitchen and dad comes home from a hard day’s work. Families go to church every Sunday because they are so thankful to God for how blessed they are.
Editors-in-chief Hayden Betts Anna Wohl
Chief online editor Connor McKnight
Director of online operation Sahil Shah
Online managing editor Eric Lifland
Phillip Ou Kevin Chu Assistants: Kelsey Kawana Jane Rem
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Games an Entertainment Editor
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“An upper school publicantion student news and views”
Lillian Mecum Lina Vadlamani Assistants: Rachel Hoang Ryan Hyon
Opinion editors Andrew Lifland
The American flag waves proudly outside of every house and building because we are proud to be Americans! Our streets are filled with massive, gas-guzzling cars that really don’t serve any purpose but to transport its passengers to McDonald’s. We love guns! We don’t speak any other languages, but we don’t really care about communicating with other countries, so whatever! Let freedom ring! We come from the most powerful country on Earth; we can do anything we want without worrying about the consequences! We are unbeatable, and we are strong! America is the best. Hooray. Instead of trying to write a novel revolving around the USA’s unparalleled power (because, well, what’s the point of that? We already know our country is the most important), Chuck Palahniuk, author of Fight Club, decided to go the
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he’ll likely have a significant edge in campaigning experience and a stronger appeal to independent voters than his Republican opponent. Romney currently has a slight lead over Obama in the polls, but the president holds the crucial longterm advantages. In 1995, Bill Clinton’s prospects for reelection were looking grim; the economy was a mess, his approval ratings were in the thirties, and many of his policies (the health care proposal, don’t-ask-don’t-tell) had proven to be disasters. Clinton benefitted from an economic upswing and exploited a lackluster opponent to decisively win the 1996 election. Obama may not be as fortunate, but his odds are good enough that it will only take a little bit of luck to get him another four years in office.
October 14, 2011
Death of an icon By PHILLIP OU Opinion editor
Steve Jobs, the ambitious pioneer, the creative genius and the daring visionary behind Apple, passed away on October 5 after a long bout with pancreatic cancer. Jobs was only 56. While the death of one of the most brilliant, technical and entrepreneurial minds in history can be considered nothing short of a tragedy, his ambition, accomplishments and impact on this world will continue to reverberate for generations to come. Jobs, along with colleague and friend, Steve Wozniak, began their careers as co-founders of Apple Computer with the production of the world’s first personal computer, the Apple II. Jobs’ vision, as well as his insatiable drive and ambition, never allowed him to grow complacent over his success. Un-
the paw print
der his direction, Apple rose from a simple start up company in Cupertino to a true vanguard of technology. Within 30 years, under the guidance of Steve Jobs, Apple not only pioneered the first personal computer, but also the first mouse, color monitor, CD-Rom, MP3-Player, online music store and touch screen phone. Behind Jobs’ success was a critical obsession with making his products sleek, effective and appealing to the public. Even when his designers presented Jobs with the ground-breaking blueprints for a new MP3-Player in 2001, Jobs sent his crew straight back to the drawing board, telling them to “make it simpler.” Although exasperated at first, the designers at Apple eventually came up with the iPod’s sleek, click-wheel design we have all grown fond of. Jobs’ sheer desire to innovate forced his colleagues to disregard all their preconceived notions of what was beyond possible. While his death certainly seems tragic and premature, his success will continue to serve as an inspiration for technological innovations of the future.
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Timeline of Apple Products
Apple II (1977)
Macintosh Portable (1989)
iPod G1 (2001)
iPod Nano (2005)
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Mediocre release for impressive piece of technology
By JANE REM Assistant opinion editor
The debut of iPhone 4S was underwhelming to say the least. Two people have been camping outside of Apple’s 5th Avenue store in New York City for seventeen days, and I imagine that they were the two most dismayed people in America when they found out that iPhone 5 is still nonexistent. However, they are still out there, first in line of a very, very long succession of excited techies. What convinced them to stay? First, turning back was probably too painful an option to even consider. Eight days of sitting and waiting just to go home? Forget it. Second, once they got over their massive disappointment, they probably realized that the new iPhone 4S is still really cool and worth the purchase. Despite its identical external design, iPhone 4S boasts an 8 megapixel camera, 1080p HD video recording (which is the same quality as Sony’s top selling digital camera), iOS 5, iCloud and most importantly, Siri. Want to text while driving? Now you can (legally). Siri a personal assistant that can
Paws & Claws
understand and perform tasks, and it also makes multitasking much easier. Aside from Siri, iPhone 4S is not revolutionary. But then again, Apple never claimed it was. By naming the new device iPhone 4S, Apple is admits that it is not a full-fledged upgrade. However, the absence of the much-anticipated iPhone 5 resulted in an immediate 5% plunge in Apple’s shares. Coupled with the passing of Steve Jobs, the charismatic, driven and much loved executive of Apple, the smartphone giant looked like it had hit a wall. Apple recovered with pre-order sales that the company itself hadn’t anticipated. iPhone 4S was sold out even before the first day had ended, and AT&T reported over 200,000 sales in just 12 hours, a new record for the company. Consumers are obviously still willing to give iPhone 4S a chance, which is a testament to Apple’s—and Jobs’—history of remarkable, ingenious products.
Claws to no hot chocolate in the Student Commons. -Caroline Harvey ‘14
Paws to Harry Templeton for being a great guy -Ryan Hyon ‘13
Claws to not knowing what time I have to be at school every day. -Caitlin Burns ‘12
Paws to the girls volleyball team for beating Chadwick. -Charlie Patterson ‘14
Paws to sleeping in. -Francesca Jiminez ‘12
Paws to the great Francis Wass. -Ryan Hyon ‘13
Claws to the Senior Patio not being finished. -Chris Terrile ‘12
Paws to all of the seniors who helped with Freshmen Leadership Day. -Kelly Poole ‘15 Paws to only having three days of school this week. -Nathaniel Young ‘14
Claws to the PSAT. -Riley Walker ‘14
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Capital punishment after Troy Davis By JANNA WENNBERG Student contributor
The death penalty is morally and philosophically wrong. First and foremost, it is not our place to “play God.” We, as human beings, do not have the authority to decide the fate of another human. The death penalty is not a penalty at all--it is nothing but a revenge murder. I do believe in second chances. Every man should have the opportunity to rethink his life and change his purpose for the better. If said person is executed, there is no opportunity to change his or her life. We, as Americans, should be above this. -Nathan Lee ‘15
I believe that those who commit crimes and remove themselves from society figuratively through their actions should not have the rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness associated with being a part of American society. However, the death penalty system in the United States is flawed in practice due to biased courts and differences between state governments. While the idealized version of the death penalty would make the United States a safer place and ensure the punishment that some deserve, the current system of capital punishment is ultimately unjust. -Sitara Hirji ‘12
ffectiveness is relative. For millennia, capital punishment has been a part of human civilization, and our species has long been governed by the ideas of retribution, justice and making the punishment fit the crime. But we live in a dynamic world, where some pieces of historic rules and traditions do not fit the newer mold of our world. The once-accepted institution of capital punishment has now become one of controversy nationally and internationally, and many societies are now questioning whether or not to make life in prison the maximum punishment Counter-intuitively, death row costs Americans much more than life without parole. First, the financial costs. Trials last significantly longer when the state seeks capital punishment, and the post-trial hearings alone have three stages: a direct appeal given to all sentenced to death, state postconviction hearings and federal habeas corpus. The cost of these court proceedings is expensive but has been mandated by the Supreme Court. Other costs include extra maintenance and security costs. The California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice used conservative estimates and concluded that the California death row costs the state $137 million per year, and by pursuing life as the maximum punishment, the costs are narrowed down to $11.5 million. California could invest the savings in policing and education, more effective ways of fighting crime. To put that $125.5 million in perspective, one year without the death penalty can pay a full year’s tuition for 11,185 undergraduate residents in
the UC system. The Death Penalty Information Center reports that California has 721 inmates. Should we keep 700 criminals on death row or send 11,000 students to college? Of those 700 criminals, there is always the horrible possibility that one is innocent. Past stays and moratoriums on capital punishment all have come from the fear of a wrongful sentence. The state of Texas executed Cameron Todd Willingham for alleged infanticide in 2004 only to afterwards find compelling evidence of his innocence, including faulty testimony, an inept arson investigator and unmentioned crucial details. This past September, the state of Georgia executed Troy Davis despite lacking evidence of his guilt. Some, however, refuse to even acknowledge the dangers of fallibility in capital punishment. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia went so far as to say the following in 2009: “This Court has never held that the Constitution forbids the execution of a convicted defendant who has had a full and fair trial but is later able to convince a habeas court that he is ‘actually’ innocent.” Please consider: should we follow Scalia’s opinion? Do we really stoop so low as to condone the state’s killing of an innocent defendant? Submission to our own fallibility leads to apathy at the painful cost of our own morality. I propose we maintain the moral belief that killing is wrong. The Bill of Rights was not adopted to establish morality but to emphasize certain rights of the individual of which many have been used as a framework to qualify further
protections. Every amendment was implemented for a reason or cause, and one of them addressed the primal human urge for revenge: the 8th amendment, which dictates that one should not inflict cruel or punishment among prisoners. The Founding Fathers did not necessarily consider capital punishment cruel or unusual at the time, but they took it upon themselves to protect prisoners from vengeful mobs seeking violent retribution rather than justice. At a relatively recent debate for Republican presidential candidates, a moderator mentioned that Texas has executed 234 death row inmates under Gov. Rick Perry’s incumbency, more than any governor in modern history. Before the moderator could ask a related question, the crowd enthusiastically applauded. Those who applauded death represent the aggressive and vengeance-driven legal system the Constitution attempts to restrain. Justice and bloodthirst should not mix with our implementation of the death penalty, the line between these two concepts grows less and less distinct. In short, the cost of capital punishment is the meaning of justice in the minds of American citizens. Many states still hold firm to the belief that life in prison is not sufficient punishment for the heinous crimes that people have committed. I do not attempt to deny that these people should suffer severe consequences for their actions. However, the truth of the matter is that we do not need to put criminals to death to rid them from society – that goal is also achieved by life in prison without parole. What differentiates these two punishments and causes the controversy is the irreversibility of execution and the substantial economic costs to our country. Why should we compromise financial stability, morality, and true justice for a flawed institution when a better solution is so easy to see?
The Paw Print welcomes student and faculty responses to opinion articles. Please send any submissions to email@example.com
Food for thought: hearing student voices ur school’s philosophy asserts that Poly aims to prepare its students “to meet the complexities of a changing world with confidence and good character,” but one thing has become clear since the start of the school year: like people everywhere, Poly kids can be resistant to change, and perhaps with good cause. With the introduction of the new academic schedule, the escalation of disruptive construction projects and a change in the main source of food on campus, the past few weeks have left many students feeling frustrated and powerless. Nominally, there are over 60 “student leaders” in the Upper School. So why do so many students still feel that their voices are not heard? Maximizing the impact of student opinions must be a two-way street; the administration needs to allow students to take part in the decisions that really matter, and students need to take responsibility when they are given opportunities to participate and voice opinions. The new schedule has undoubtedly been the most drastic change this year, and most students are having a hard time adjusting to it. Could the transition have been easier if students had felt like they had more say in sculpting the schedule that has affected homework loads, wake-up times and course dynamics? The Schedule Committee met 19 times last year before proposing two brand new options, which our teachers had the oppor-
tunity to vote on. Shouldn’t students have played a part in the process? As it turns out, we did have some small opportunities. Most of us have forgotten—as I had—that before beginning to construct a new schedule, the Schedule Committee both surveyed students and teachers and held two meetings that welcomed student participation. While 60 percent of students and teachers responded to the survey, only about 15 students showed up to the two meetings. This is the key point. Clearly, holding a couple of open meetings isn’t enough to encourage students to present their opinions. More importantly, without giving some students a tangible and long-term stake in the process, the message being conveyed is that student views are not going to be taken very seriously. In fairness, the blame falls on both sides; we as students largely failed to take advantage of the opportunities to participate and to voice concerns to the administration at the relevant time. The members of the Schdule Committee undoubtedly had students’ best interests at heart throughout the process, supported by a well-informed understanding of student life at Poly. But the formal selection of one or two students to participate in the deliberations of the Schedule Committee—at least in any
non-confidential portions of the meetings— could have accomplished several objectives. Substantive and helpful information unique to students would have better informed the final product. There would have been a recognized point person for gathering, distilling and organizing student viewpoints. Perhaps most importantly, there likely would have been more widespread understanding and acceptance of the process and final results. The decision to replace the Lunch Truck and Gourmet Fresh with a sole food provider, California Fresh, also clearly should have incorporated student input. It is understandable that both the shortened lunch period and the desire to offer healthier options motivated a switch in food sourcing on campus. However, most students and faculty members didn’t even hear about the change until a few days before the start of school. At the school’s Leadership Retreat in late August, students had the opportunity to suggest meals from a provided menu, but asking for input that late in the process is not enough. Students should have been actively involved in the decision from the start—including selection of the provider, as well as menu and pricing options. I believe that there is more room for stu-
Maximizing the impact of student opinions must be a two-way street.
dent participation in the decisions that really impact students. Faculty Curriculum Committee member Carmie Rodriguez agreed that involving a student representative, who could be called upon when needed, could help keep the curriculum in tune with student needs. Board of Trustees Chair Chris Poole noted that, although the board generally handles issues involving the long-term status of the school, board members could surely benefit from hearing more about what goes on in students’ lives on a day-to-day basis. With that said, we as students need to capitalize on our opportunities for involvement. Instead of using leadership titles as padding for our résumés, let’s use our positions to communicate student opinions. The ASB cabinet has gradually become less involved in decision-making and policy creating in the Upper School. In the past, the cabinet met with the Head of the Upper School each week; now, these meetings only happen when problems arise. Going forward, the ASB cabinet—and all other student leaders—should try to take a more active role in collaborating and negotiating with the administration. We understand that Poly is not a democracy, but giving students a designated, formal role in these types of committees—where the topics are appropriate for student input—not only increases the transparency of the administration, but also provides students with excellent learning opportunities and enhances understanding and consensus. Aren’t these the very core values that the school seeks to teach and model to its students? -ARW
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Off the Cuff: Male Teacher Fashion
“I’d say Mr. Donnell is the cover of the Abercrombie and Fitch catalogue. Dr. Neilson is cover of GQ. Mr. Schmoke is cover of Field and Stream.” -Dean Doug Jolly
How would you describe your style? Donnell: Classic Americana with a twist Dr. Neilson: Largely absent. I don’t really have a style. And since I’m the principal of a high school I’m really not trying to go around making a statement. Schmoke: Nonexistent.
What were the big trends when you were in high school? DN: Overcoats with jean jackets under them like vests were popular when I was a teenager. S: Skinny jeans. PP: What is a current high school trend that you don’t understand? D: Pajamas. That and Ugg boots and Juicy suits, and then mesh shorts for boys. Speaking of shorts my friends often give me a hard time because I don’t wear t-shirts or shorts in public unless I’m running. DN: Really extreme baggy trousers—when the top of the pants are below the last part of the butt—I’m just baffled and wonder wow why even wear the pants at all? Also what I don’t get are girls who wear Ugg boots but wear really short skirts. S: Skinny jeans. What is your go to piece? D: The gingham button down shirt. DN: I think you’ll find for most faculty that are men its khakis and a oxford shirt. How do you feel about the color orange? Do you like it? DN: I’m not an orange fan. When I came to Poly I had no orange clothing. S: Nope. Not a big fan of the orange. I think it would be cool if the colors were orange and black. What is your general opinion of Crocs? D: Of Crocs? [Long pause] I understand that they are comfortable… DN: I think they should never be let outside the bathroom. I think they are ridiculous. They make you look like your trying to get a germ or avoid a germ. People on the east coast wear them a lot more. I think they are kind of lame, but what do I know? Do you have any odd wardrobe pieces that you just keep in the back of the closet for memories sake? D: I have a couple pairs of go to hell pants. They’re those pants that are in really outlandish colors. They are kind of hard to pull off. I also have a pearl button shirt. It’s one of those western type shirts and it’s embroidered with all these logos on the shoulders. It’s good for any western-themed party. S: I have a varsity jacket from when I was in college. I would never wear it. It’s ridiculous.
“Mr. Donnell is the new Clark Kent.” -Dougie Cleary Where do you think your sense of style came from? D: Honestly, I think it came from my mother. She put value on appearances and how I presented myself. She always would make me wear a sports coat when I flew on a plane, which not everyone does now. Is it an East Coast prep thing you have going on? D: No, but people often think that. I have to be careful with how I word this but I remember when I was in high school trying to be well-dressed for girls. Sometimes I wonder if the boys here want to get dates, but maybe they just don’t really need to look put-together for that reason. I don’t know. Where do you frequently shop? D: Well, I’m very brand loyal. I stick to brands that I like. My shoes are all Clarks, my jeans are all Levi’s, my shirts are all Brooks Brothers. There have been some rumors about the legitimacy of your glasses. Would you care to set the record straight? D: Oh really? No, people can spread all the rumors they want, but I will say that no one would want me driving at night without them. What did you wear when you were in high school? D: In high school I was pretty preppy. At my school we had a dress code. We had to wear collared shirts, and we couldn’t wear anything with logos—the kind of things kids here usually wear I wasn’t allowed to wear—but I don’t know if I would have chosen to anyway. I don’t want to knock the students or anything...
“Dr. Neilson’s style is very approachable, like: “Hey we’re both shopping at Old Navy’s back to school special, and we share the same love for solid colored sweaters” approachable. At the same time, he wears the perfect clothes in which to commit a murder.” -Madison Scheckel ‘10 What are your favorite places to shop? DN: Joe Banks or Brooks Brothers for work clothes. When I’m not at school I just wear shorts and jeans. If Poly were to have a uniform what would it be? DN: I think I’d go in the Hogwarts direction. Either that or orange jumpsuits. Does your wife do your shopping for you? DN: No she doesn’t do my shopping but she is very much involved in the choices that are made. If I make a choice she doesn’t like, then I’m in trouble. I’m not allowed to wear sweater vests. I’m also not allowed to have the sweaters that have buttons. Cardigans? Like the kinds of sweaters Mr. Donnell wears? DN: Yeah, those ones. I’m not allowed to have them because my wife says they make me look like an old man when I wear them. And how does this make you feel? DN: Is this therapy or an interview? Both. DN: Well I suppose I feel that you look like whatever you look like whether you have a cardigan on or not. That’s sort of my motto in life.
“If I had to guess what Mr. Schmoke will be wearing tomorrow I’d say a hat, a shoe with a hole in it and some kind of a button down with a Detroit Lions tee-shirt underneath it.” -Mr. Jolly Did you ever wear skinny jeans? S: Yeah, I wore them, but we pegged them. There was definitely a time in my life when I wore parachute pants and shirts with multiple zippers. Dr. Neilson: Did your parachute pants have zip offs so if you got hot you could just unzip them at the legs? S: Occasionally I did. I still have pants like that. What trend is going on right now that you think is nice? S: I think the scarf. The scarf is always nice. The scarf is class. Do you do your own shopping or does your wife shop for you? S: My wife shops for me. How do you feel about that? S: Don’t care. Honestly I’m at the point now where I’m kind of done growing. I’m not getting any taller so I pretty much hold on to clothes until they wear out or my wife throws them out.
Special thanks to Mr. Donnell, Mr. Schmoke, and Dr. Neilson.
Compiled by Monique Bartley and Mackenzie Marcotte
Artist of the Issue: Victoria Gu By NATHANIEL YOUNG Assistant life editor
For sophomore Victoria Gu, dance takes precedence over all. Dance guides her, supports her, embodies her. Gu began dancing when she was four years old, originally emulating her older sister, Tiffany, who had started taking ballet classes. Victoria enrolled in ballet classes and continued to cultivate her interest in this style of dance. Gu remarked, “Ballet is still my favorite type of dance because it is so sophisticated. I love ballet’s classical style and lines.” Along with ballet, Gu also enjoys contemporary dance. At Li’s Ballet Studio, she practices both ballet and contemporary and has gone to competitions for both.
Although her formal training and roots are in ballet, contemporary dance still is an important part of her dance repertoire. When asked about her passion and commitment to dance, Gu replied, “I dance because it’s an element that takes me away from reality. I dance in the moment and live in it.” Victoria elaborates, “Dance gives me a way to express my emotions and an outlet to anything else that I have going on in my life.” Gu’s passion has stayed strong throughout the years. “Dancing has become part of my daily life and quitting would be like ripping out a huge chunk of who I am,” she said. Victoria’s dedication is extremely impressive – having no doubts whatsoever about such an intense activity is exceedingly rare.
This past summer, Victoria attended the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet Summer Intensive at the Juilliard School in New York City. The program was a three-weeklong experience of rigorous dance classes, concluding with a final recital. Along with summer activities, Victoria has competed in many notable competitions. She was part of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai, the Showstopper Dance Championship, the American Dance Awards and the Starbound Dance Competition. At Poly, Gu entered her freshman year starting in the most advanced dance class offered. She was a predominant dancer in the GSL Dance Show last spring, and she looks forward to dancing in it this year as well. Victoria looks forward to continuing her love for dance during her time at Poly.
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Franchise: Nightmare on Elms St Number of films: 10 Number of kills: 43 Weakness: Children
Franchise: Friday the 13th Number of films: 12 Number of kills: 158 Weakness: Mother
Franchise: Halloween Number of films: 8 Number of kills: 111 Weakness: A rough situation at home
Franklin D. Roosevelt once uttered the famous words, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Many took these words as inspiration, that in the face of adversity, man might stand strong, never giving in, because all obstacles are self-imposed. What ole Franky truly meant, however, is that Freddy Krueger is fear, and therefore can easily trounce these pitiful wannabes. Freddy Krueger enters your dreams. This fact alone is terrifying. Americans are the best at suppressing stupid things like emotions and powering through, and sleep is the only place in which we are vulnerable. Tell yourself those night terrors don’t happen; what happens between the sheets is for you and your beloved only. But Freddy attacks us, when we are naked on the first day of school; when we are falling forever; when JUST ONCE we imagine if we are a girl for a day. Subconscious is a private thing, and he invades it. Freddy manifests that which we most fear, be it sharks, or repressed homosexual desires, as Robert Englund, the actor who plays Freddy, attests. THOSE DAMN GLOVES! Some might say that it matters not what Freddy can do in a dream, as in real life he is merely a man. But these people are missing the point. Freddy attacks on his home turf; he chooses the playing field. Try not to sleep; insomnia is a band-aid, a faulty panacea that destroys humanity before it saves lives. Believe me when I say that you cannot escape Freddy, for he is coming. Home is where the heart is; when security falls, so too does sanity. A life on the run is no life at all; one, two, Freddy’s coming for you; he is fear, I am fear, I AM SCARED, HE’S RIGHT HERE---
You know, sometimes people don’t ask for my opinion right off, and I’d like to let you all know that you are welcome to my thoughts and feelings on any given issue, whenever you ask. Or at least until next December- I might be busy around then. In any case, I’m here to vouch for one of the greatest young performers this side of the 1980’s, Jason Voorhees. Jason has been a real joy to watch, from his first days at Camp Crystal Lake to his many, many kills at the expense of various rascals. I like him because he has a real background, you know? Who hasn’t had a few catty rivalries at summer camp in years past? Well, not me, I guess. I never went to summer camp. But Jason is the kind of killer who really gets ahold of your heart (and not just literally!). I remember my first impression of him well- when someone steps onscreen wearing a hockey mask, you know you’re in for something new. What is this, the horror from the northern border!? We love it! You can try to tally up the confirmed murders of any serious participant (and Jason wouldn’t be lacking!), but that isn’t really what this debate is about. When it comes down to it, you know that the real winner is the one who strikes a nostalgic chord with all his victims, and I believe you need look no further to find your man. Cheers!
“I met this six-year-old child, with this blank, pale, emotionless face and, the blackest eyes... the *devil’s* eyes. I spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up because I realized what was living behind that boy’s eyes was purely and simply... *evil*.” Alright, let’s face it. If there was ever a serial killer we should be afraid of, it’s probably going to be Mike Myers. Why not be afraid of Freddy? I mean sure, if you’re still the type of person who needs a teddy bear at night and a night light to ward off the dark. He’s nothing but a dirty old man who likes to harass little children in their sleep. Jason? Don’t even get me started on him. The little boy with mommy issues who dresses up as a wannabe serial killer in a hockey mask, sulks around his little camp playground with a machete. Avoiding him is a simple matter of not stepping into Camp Crystal Lake. But Mike Myers is the real threat. Born the spawn of evil, Mike Myers brutally murdered his own sister at the age of six with a pair of scissors and a clown mask. Put in an insane asylum, he managed to escape 17 years later, and now stalks through town after town on a murderous rampage. He also seems to be immortal, having survived being stabbed, shot, drowned, electrocuted, lit on fire and thrown out of a second story window. Despite that, Mike Myers still roams through cities, through towns, and even through communities like Pasadena looking for fresh prey. For all we know, he could be lurking right next door to you. He could be watching you right now as you vote for the winner of the formidable three, and if you don’t vote right, you might just get a bloody surprise tonight.
Cthulhu, who arrived on campus shortly after the year cheer was modified to “Hey Ph’nglui mglw’nafh... Hey Cthulhu R’lyeh.... Hey wgah’nagl fhtagn!” is a first time contributor to The Paw Print. Here, he takes a break from demonizing. -Cthulhu (translated by Anton Meier)
LIFE Feature: A Clean, Poorly-Lit Place 8
the paw print
By MICHAEL LIBUCHA and BENOY MENON Senior features writer and student contributor Nestled tightly among storefronts on Venice Boulevard in Culver City, the building appears to be a medium two-story apartment. The facade of the Museum of Jurassic Technology is painted in dark colors with an oddly placed fountain directly in the center. To the side is the main door, which opens into the first room, the museum shop. The curator of the museum sits behind a desk here, taking suggested donations and explaining the purpose of the museum. Walking through the foyer, the building splits into a maze of halls leading in all directions back through the museum. The Museum of Jurassic Technology has its roots in a period when museums were not dedicated to the intellectual betterment of society. Instead, museums were the personal collections of aristocrats. A sense of personal curiosity and interest sparked the phenomenon known as “collecting,” and when it became fashionable to donate these collections to a public institution, the museum was born. The Museum of Jurassic Technology is a throwback to this traditional ideal. The brilliance of the Museum of Jurassic Technology lies in its diverse and disparate exhibits. The museum compiles privately held collections and displays them. The layout of the museum forces one to venture to its rear to view the earliest exhibits, with the newer ones displayed at the front. The ACROSS 1. “The,” to Hans, occasionally 4. A pea’s favorite electronic device? 8. Goes all in, e.g. 12. Indonesian island 13. Popular recording service 14. Showed (one’s teeth) 16. “… deliver us from evil. _______.” 17. Squaw Valley vehicle 18. Elderly paper salesman 19. Their hardness can be measured with the Mohs Scale 21. He hosted SNL with Radiohead 23. Evaluation 24. They “know drama” 25. Agrees to participate (with “in”) 27. Mt. Vesuvius product 29. The type of club Sue Sylvester tried to sabotage 30. Word preceding many rappers’ names 31. Gibson of film 34. Tony Stark’s favorite vegetable? 37. Napa substance, to Giuseppe 38. Prefix with tic or skeleton 39. Not his 40. Spinach & artichoke menu item
October 14 2011
plethora of different topics and the confusing architecture of the building contribute to the underlying theme of intellectual curiosity captured in the arcane and the strange. Little
A second exhibit explains sublimation, the chemical reaction by which a solid changes state directly to a gas. There are numerous equally curious exhibits throughout the museum with little relevance to one another. One of the main exhibits is dedicated to letters to and from Mount Wilson. Mount Wilson, a famous peak in the San Gabriel Mountains, looms over Pasadena and the Los Angeles Area. The observatory at its top contains two large telescopes and is noted for its public access. The exhibit contains many letters from the public to astronomers at Mt. Wilson regarding the work done and various theories generated by public knowledge. The walls of the room are covered with 33 letters of communication between scientists at the Mount Wilson observatory and the public, mainly from the 1930s to 1950s. Other exhibits include decaying dice, disintegrated partially with the use of
nitric acid and sulphuric acid, entitled “Rotten Luck,” as well as a set of miniature violins and dolls viewed under a microscope by Hagop Sandaldjian. “The Lives of Perfect Creatures” contains oil paintings of the dogs sent into orbit by the Soviet space program. The range of interests covered by the Museum of Jurassic Technology is wide, and incoherent as a whole when compared to other larger and far more endowed museums. However, with an open mind to the recherché knowledge of this museum, one could certainly spend a day taking in this collection of the Lower Jurassic.
can be learned by just being in the building. It takes work and discovery to experience the museum for all its worth. Among the perplexing items is a set of various antlers and horns, taken from five different species, arranged from top to bottom, largest to smallest, underneath a placard that told of an ancient fable regarding a woman who grew a horn out of the back of her head.
41. Gets grey hairs 42. Pub drink 43. Set up _______ 45. What Bond tries to find after Vesper’s death 47. Common culinary measurement (abbr.) 48. Camcorder button 49. It goes with turf 50. Type of #10 down 51. Wave feature you can ride 52. Acronym indicating uncertainty 55. She raids tombs 58. Part of a fish hook 60. Constellation with a belt 62. Leaves words out 64. Prefix with morphosis or physics 66. Food you should leggo of 67. Middle Eastern capital 68. Type of eagle 69. As _______ on TV 70. Norwegian capital 71. _______ of March 72. Rugby equivalent of a touchdown DOWN 1. Matt who plays Linus in Ocean’s 11, 12 & 13 2. Choose, in a way 3. Where Chazz Michael Michaels competes 4. _______ Technical Institute 5. Sparrow or Barbossa 6. Ellipse-like shapes 7. Defining pantheon feature 8. European media giant 9. It’s 93 million miles from the sun 10. What the Navi lived in 11. San Francisco candy seller 12. No. California transit system 15. Controversial pesticide (abbr.) 20. Shoe part 22. Genesis murderer 26. ppm word 28. _______-Mo 29. Phone feature that makes use of satellites 30. Word with sync or service 31. 106 prefix 32. High ranking official (abbr.) 33. Run into a red ghost, e.g. 34. Slang word meaning “cool”
35. Marine snakes 36. Our rival, for short 37. One who gets a backstage pass, e.g. 40. Kaiser Permanente employee, for short 41. Late ‘80s sitcom and alien 43. _______ Lanka 44. Miracle on Ice coach 45. Jersey Mike’s meal 46. “Milk’s favorite cookie” 49. What a ninja must be 50. All Mortal Combat fights, e.g.
51. “Don’t _______ on Me” 52. Tony is one 53. Enemy’s golf score? 54. Archaic word for “at once” 55. Mauna _______ 56. Gun food? 57. Wheel features 59. Prefix with dexterous or valence 61. Take a siesta 63. _______ Cone 65. Irksome Youtube interruptions (abbr.)
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Student explorers return from Trips Week with battle scars
!!After spending a week in the
wilderness with their peers, three students returned home with injuries. By NOAH KIM Assistant news editor
Freshman Olivia Wu suffered from a deep gash in her right leg on the mountain biking trip. Upper School students usually look forward to the Outdoor Education Trips Week as a chance to experience the beauty and majestic power of nature while taking a brief respite from the mundane patterns of life at school. But for a select few each year, the experience is marred by unexpected injuries. This year was no exception. Freshman Olivia Woo’s leg was caught in the gears of her mountain bike, which resulted in lacerations that required 20 stitches. Sophomore Aria Fan twisted her ankle, resulting in a sprain, and junior Mackenzie Sikora broke her toe. Similar injuries have occurred in the past as a result of the inevitable dangers that nature
poses. Last year, junior Bryce Cire climbs 20 feet off of the ground – broke both arms after a traumatic that children grow,” Marion said. Fay agreed “You can’t just keep fall from a ledge. Three years ago, senior Chris Ward suffered from a kids in a bubble. They must learn deep gash on his abdomen from a from risks and mistakes to truly develop into experienced and mountain bike accident. Trips Week is often associated knowledgeable individuals.” The Outdoor Education with valuable and memorable experiences that revolve around Program trips allow students to bonding with friends, new and acquire self-confidence, a sense of old. However, the underlying personal responsibility, service to the community and an appreciation risk in each activity often challenges Risk is everywhere; there is risk the safety in driving to school. Does this measures mean you should stop driving?” taken by each student on these trips. Although chaperons of the natural world. Such aspects and trip guides have extensive first prove to be invaluable to the aid and emergency training and maturation of an individual and frequently remind students to be exceed the risks that these trips may wary of their surroundings, a few pose. Although such risks may yield students are injured every year. However, even the victims of beneficial real-life experience, such incidents seem to maintain the Outdoor Education program their enthusiasm for the trips. has also been developing plans “There is only a slim chance for to try to reduce the number of incidents to happen,” said Woo. injuries on the trips. The Outdoor “The valuable bonding with friends Education program plans to create that is characteristic of these trips a Risk Advisory Board consisting of outweighs their potential dangers.” faculty, parents, administration and Teacher Jonathan Fay, a chaperon outside consultants that will review on the freshmen mountain biking the safety practices and emergency trip, also denies that these risks procedures of each trip. Marion attended the Annual pose a real obstruction to the students. “Life is managing risk. Wilderness Risk Management You do it every day,” said Fay. Conference in Boston this very “Risk is everywhere; there is risk in week to discuss the inherent driving to school. Does this mean risks prevalent in the Outdoor Education Program. Marion plans you should stop driving?” Additionally, the exhilaration to gather small groups of chaperons associated with such activities to develop risk management plans requires the existence of risk, as the for each trip. “We will analyze each elimination of all risk destroys the trip, weighing the risks of the trip purpose of the activity. Director of activities with the mission of the Outdoor Education Laura Marion program,” said Marion. “Are the explains that instead of fearing such risks worth the intended learning outcomes? Then we will discuss dangers, we should embrace them. “It is through the taking of risks how we can manage each of these – whether it is a 5-year-old child risks so as to lessen the possibility who climbs to the top of the jungle that they will occur.” gym to the 15-year-old who rock
Two in a Thousand
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Lee qualif ied as f inalists in the auditions for the Rose Court.
!"#$%&'()*)+(",'#)+-'"+..*'/%('()0%.1#$%& !!A new student-run research team
is investigating social issues within the Upper School to create a more open environment.
By NOAH KIM News assistant editor
In order to better address the needs of Upper School students, Poly has assembled its first ever Youth Participatory Action Research team (YPART). A largely student-run organization grown out of the science department, the team will work together with the student body to make Poly a more open and effective community. Poly joins the ranks of nine other private high schools across the country affiliated with the Center for the Study of Boys’ and Girls’ Lives (CSBGL), a research collaboration founded by the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. According to their mission statement, CSBGL “strives to capture the dynamism and agency in students’ development and to
help schools promote the widest As it is the team’s inaugural Meeting throughout the week sense of possibility and greatest year, University of Pennsylvania during A period, they have already hope for integrity in their lives.” professor Peter Kuriloff and made their presence known by Last spring, those interested in graduate student Tanya Maloney administering the first of four selfPoly’s YPART were made surveys asked to fill out to be taken an application and throughout submit two teacher the school year recommendations. by each grade After deliberation, level in the those chosen to Upper School. participate in the Questions 2011-2012 school asked extend year were juniors beyond the Brooke Edwards, social aspects of Shelley Garg and high school and Lillian Mecum and breach upon seniors Kevin Chu topics of ethics and Matt Rossi. and morality. The team’s chief When the final !"##$%&'()*'+,-%.%&/'%0"1%0#2-+ advisor is science results come in, teacher Patty Tsai, !"#$%&"'()*+,("-%(./"0+&(1%'%2*/-(3+,,0""%%(452&("+('#*6%7( the team hopes who is assisted by 844%*(!/-++5('"#$%&"'("+()0&$(927'("+(,2:%('"#$%&"(50)%(;%""%*< to analyze and English teacher distinguish Cotter Donnell, Spanish teacher are also guiding YPART. Although what aspects of Upper School Ann Diederich, History teacher counseled by these mentors, the life students feel need to be José Melgoza, Upper School organization is essentially student- improved and, through qualitative director Jamie Nielson and Sports run, and all final decisions are research methodology, form Coordinator Amber Gravely. ultimately made by the students. practical, effective solutions.
Throughout the year, YPART will also engage the student body in one-on-one interviews and focusgroup studies in order to hear the multiple, unique voices, outlooks and experiences of the Poly community. “I am excited to work with students and in collaboration with the CSBGL so that we can make Poly a better community for every student, where they can be their true selves in the classrooms, on the fields, in social situations, and where they feel supported in being their best selves,” Tsai says. Chu agrees, “The experience I’ve had as a member of the action research team has far exceeded my expectations so far. I truly believe that we, with the participation of the Poly community can make some extremely beneficial changes to make our school a better place for the future.” At the end of the year, the team will attend the annual Round Table conference in Philadelphia and present their research and findings to the other schools.
the paw print
October 14, 2011
Eyes on the varsity football team
Senior Jonah Campbell worked hard in the offseason to improve his game, but based on his statistics he still has room to improve. This past week against Sage Hill, Campbell broke his left hand in the first half and will be out for an indefinite period of time. The football team now turns to backup sophomore quarterback Michael Bowman to temporarily fill the void. In the 28-0 win against Sage Hill, Bowman played most of the second quarter and the second half. With the Poly rushing attack firing on all cylinders, Bowman did not need to contribute much but did throw a few times and had an unlucky interception on a deflected pass. If the Panthers are to win against stronger teams, the team needs Bowman to step up and lead the offense with poise and confidence. Through the first five games of the season, Campbell had completed 21 of 47 passes for 272 yards, with one touchdown and four interceptions. Campbell was at his best in the season opening 20-13 win over Brethren Christian, in which he completed 10 of 14 passes for 151 yards and his only passing touchdown of the season.
Football season in review On the heels of last year’s stellar team, the varsity football squad came into the fall season knowing it had large shoes to fill. After going 9-4 and driving deep into the CIF playoffs in 2010, the Panthers graduated 19 seniors and saw its numbers dwindle from 30 players to only 21 this year. This loss necessitated members this year playing multiple positions on both sides of the ball. Under the pressure of high expectations, the Panthers began the season with three consecutive non-league wins over Brethren Christian, Malibu and Marshall by scores of 20-13, 17-7 and 34-6. The defense led the charge to victory in each game, especially against Marshall, in which the Panthers recorded eleven sacks. Under the lights at Gabrielino High School, the Panthers had multiple turnovers and Gabrielino capitalized. A fumble in the second quarter on a screen pass and an interception during a key fourth quarter drive by the Panther offense snuffed out any chance of a comeback as Poly fell, 20-13, in their first loss on the season. However, the Panthers bounced back in their next game against Sage Hill. Senior running back Harry Hodgkins had three rushing touchdowns in the first half before exiting the game with a leg injury. His replacement, sophomore Jack Kayyem, continued the rushing attack with a touchdown run of his own in the third quarter. The defense stifled Sage Hill’s offensive opportunities in the 28-0 shutout, punctuated by Poly blocking the Sage Hill field goal attempt as time ran out in the half. Senior quarterback Jonah Campbell and Hodgkins have led the Poly offensive charge so far this year. Campbell worked hard in the offseason to improve his game and field vision, but his efforts have not fully come to fruition in regards to his statistics. The spark-plug of the Poly offense so far has been Hodgkins, who has carried the rushing attack on his shoulders. Hodgkins has plowed through opposing defenses with nine rushing touchdowns through the first five games. He recorded 186 rushing yards in the loss against Gabrielino and 189 yards in the first half against Sage Hill. With its solid start to the fall season, the Panthers look to Hodgkins and its defense to continue their strong performances. At the same time, if the Panthers are to go far in CIF this year, the team needs Campbell to return to his first game form and reestablish the passing game. With hard work and perseverance, the group hopes to maintain its current level of intensity on the road to the postseason. -Caleb Lee
Senior lineman Nathan Hamming (63) blocks the opposition as fellow senior Jordan Olivar (67) tracks the ball.
Going into the season, the Panthers knew that the cornerstone of the team would be its formidable line, and the group has not disappointed thus far. Seniors Daniel Leon (6’3”, 290 lbs), Jordan Olivar (6’7”, 275 lbs,), and Nathan Hamming (6’3”, 225 lbs) anchor Poly’s first line of defense. Following their lead are senior Matthew Liu, junior Alex Smith and sophomore Will Genske. These linemen have used their size, strength and skill to keep the team in every game. Through the first four games, Hamming leads the team with 34 tackles and seven sacks, five of which came against Marshall in the 34-6 Panther victory. Against Marshall, the Panthers defensive line dominated, sacking the quarterback an astounding eleven times and recording 48 total tackles. The team is relying on the linemen to continue their strong play. On defense they must pressure the opposition into making mistakes and record key tackles while on offense they need to protect the quarterback and spearhead the running game. Though it is relatively early in the season, it is safe to say that the success of the Panther football team depends on the game-by-game performance of its linemen.
Rushing and Receiving
Sophomore receiver Charlie Ramirez (19) lays out for the grab.
The running backs and wide receivers on the football team are largely responsible for the team’s offensive success early in the season as the Panthers have scored an average of 22 points per game. Starting senior running back Harrison Hodgkins has been one of the main contributors to the offense this year, consistently putting up big numbers. In his first five games, Hodgkins has rushed for 98, 172, 108, 186 and 189 yards for an average of 151 yards per game. With this steady yardage gain, Hodgkins has proven to be one of the vital assets to the team’s offensive success. Backup running back Jack Kayyem has also contributed with two rushing touchdowns of his own. Meanwhile, on the receiving side of the ball, Hodgkins is also one of the main contributors. So far he has eight receptions for 143 total yards. Junior Alex Pinon follows with 78 yards on six receptions. Overall, Poly’s offense has been a mix of attacks, but Hodgkins’ rushing has been the staple of this year’s offensive attack.
Senior linebacker Yusef Burpee (43) makes the open field tackle as sophomore safety Jack Kayyem (32) looks on.
The Poly varsity football team’s defense lost many of its key players but remains strong. The defense proved to be a deciding factor in the opening game against Brethren Christian, as it caught 2 interceptions and had 61 tackles in the 20-13 Poly victory. So far this year the Panthers have not given up more than 20 points in a game, a testament to the focus and determination of the solid defensive core. In the most recent game against the Sage Hill Lightning, the Panther defense shut down the Lightning, forcing seven punts, two turnovers and only one rushing gain of over 15 yards, not to mention forcing multiple Sage Hill penalties, en route to a 28-0 win. With consistent performances on defense, the team expects to stay close in games and take the pressure off of the offense. Season Overview written by sports editor Caleb Lee Spotlights by position compiled by sports editors Caleb Lee and Ian McKnight
the paw print
The Dirty Side of Sports
The ball pops loose from the running back’s grasp and bounces on the turf for anyone to claim. In a mad scramble, bodies fall onto the ball to gain control for their team. While the officials scramble to determine who has possession, anything is fair game. Finger bending, eye gouging, rib punching; every on-field vice imaginable occurs at the bottom of these opportunity-filled piles. In a game filled with 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalties and the fining of professionals for hitting a defenseless player in the wrong manner, players find other ways to release their anger in what most would agree is the most physical sport of all. Illegally but unnoticed, one could participate in the barbaric fight for a fumble; however, there are other ways that, to the spectator’s eye, seem equivalent to such transgressions yet are legal. A play where a wide receiver is assigned to “crack block” on a linebacker often results in a big hit similar in appearance to those that result in thousands of dollars fines. The difference between the two is that a “crack block” is acceptable, and when the linebacker receives such a hit from the opposing receiver, it is the full responsibility of the cornerback for failing to alert the linebacker of the situation. In football, failure to communicate effectively can jeopardize the safety of your teammates. Although such game play mostly occurs at the highest levels of football, it is not absent in youth and high school games. Even as rules are added and adjusted to tone down the physicality of the game, football is still built around toughness, emotion and strength. A combination of these qualities results in hard hits and physical play. -Charlie Ramirez
As the clock edged closer to the 90th minute, the opposing team beat our back four with a through ball, creating a foot race between our sweeper and the opposition’s forward. The player with possession darted inside our box with the sweeper inches behind him, trying to keep up. As soon as he took two steps into the box, he fell backwards, grabbing his ankle. Without the slightest touch from our defender, the “injured” forward rolled on the ground for five minutes. After the referee gave the shocked defender a red card, the forward got up easily to take the penalty kick as if nothing had happened. These acts of “diving” or “flopping” have been a phenomenon in soccer since its creation. With so few goals to come by, the thought of getting a free kick in a potentially dangerous position motivates many teams and players to resort to this subversive type of play. A few nations even use the art of diving as part of their playing style and strategy at the professional level. These teams often do not possess good ball control or a first touch, but their desire to win drives them to act in a controversial manner. Diving is seen as a form of cheating by many soccer fans, but amongst players, it is an accepted strategy. If a player was one-on-one against a defender, he could either risk getting the ball stolen or dive to earn a free kick. Which one do you think he or she would choose? Even though diving is perceived as a negative aspect of the game, the players that fake their injuries clearly have their team in mind. Players dive in order to maintain possession or receive a free kick, which all stems from a teamfirst attitude. Teammates are all united to support and respect each other, and when it comes time for a game, each player has to sacrifice the chance of getting a card or injured in order to improve the team’s chances of success. -Ian McKnight
VOLLEYBALL Led by Coach Jack Prater, the JV girls volleyball team has gone nearly undefeated in their early season matchups, with a record of 9-1. Against Temple City, setter Avra Juliani served a JV record eight aces and a total of 21 points. In the second game of against Viewpoint, opposite hitter, Kaitlyn Olah dominated with seven kills en route to another Poly victory. Poly’s Frosh/Soph team is also having an amazing season. With 28 players split into two teams, Coach Charlene Beerman has done a terrific job at getting all of the girls playing time while achieving a cumulative 9-2 record. -Natalia Sanchez-Nigolian
The Paw Print sports section addresses the issue of the underhanded tactics common to certain sports. Although there are plenty of controversial strategies in other sports, the sports addressed are notorious for their aggressive strategies and conflicts during games.
Playing in a club basketball league called ARC at the age of twelve, I remember stepping to the side to avoid a flying body whizzing by in an attempt at a flagrant foul. I had just made a scoring drive in the face of the same defender, so technically I had just sparked an immediate competitive and borderline violent act of reciprocation. I glared with rage as my defender finally came to a slamming stop. Hitting the padded wall behind the basket, his eyes filled with humiliation and embarrassment. With the competitiveness of the game of basketball, it is hard not to find aggressiveness in players trying to gain edge over their competition. Even some of the best players let the heat of the game get to them. With such a great desire to win, the ugly sides of players begin to emerge. Even Kobe Bryant has been caught bristling at other players. In a playoff series with the Houston Rockets a few years ago, Bryant’s trash-talking with Ron Artest was the top story on ESPN for weeks. Ironically, Bryant and Artest are now teammates who rely on team chemistry to win games. The feud between Artest and Bryant was a huge surprise to the casual viewer because few predicted that professional players would behave in this way. But in reality this level of dirtiness occurs in every game of basketball, even outside the NBA. In the eyes of the average parent spectator, the roughness of varsity high school basketball comes as a surprise. The pushing, shoving and trash-talking clearly mark a shift from youth league basketball. However, without this intensity, the game of basketball would not be the same. Although some of the physical fouls and social interactions may be deemed dirty, players in every level understand that these things go hand in hand with the game itself. From the youth league fouls to the high school pushing to the NBA trash talking, “dirty” basketball happens at all levels. -Zachary Bern
JV/Frosh-Soph sports update
WATER POLO The JV boys water polo team dominated this past week with four wins in six days, including a 19-2 blowout last Thursday against Webb. These wins helped the team move up to a solid 6-3 record. Although struggling at the start of the year, the team seems to have found the keys to success in the past few games and hope to continue their win streak. In their next game, the Panthers will face La Salle next Monday at the Poly pool. -David D’Amico
October 14, 2011
Most water polo players are familiar with the infamous “Blood in the Water Match,” of the 1956 Olympic games between Hungary and the USSR in which the pool reportedly turned a reddish hue with blood. While the amount of blood may have been overstated, the game was a particularly violent one, as the Hungarian players sought to salvage their national pride after the Russian government’s crushing response to the Hungarian Revolution only a few months before. Both squads viciously dealt punches and kicks – and that’s just what went on above the surface. The subtle finger-twisting, suit-grabbing, and face-elbowing tactics that went on in this game are characteristics of all high-level water polo games. One of the offensive focuses in water polo is that of gaining advantage or “inside water,” which entails attempting to gain position between one’s defender and the ball. The object of this technique is to receive the pass and score or draw a man-advantage. Similarly, the defender’s main goal is to maintain position between his man and the ball, creating a war for position where anything the referees does not see goes. Many of the best water polo players have a reputation for being dirty because they know how to use their physicality and strength to intimidate the opposing team. Opponents are often afraid to match up against these players because they know any attempt at driving to get the ball will most likely incur a painful blow to the face or body. The medium of water unique to water polo creates an unseen playing field where anything goes, and the dirtiest player often wins the one-on-one battle. -Colin Woolway
In the second inning of the California Competitive Youth Baseball championship game, I hit the shortstop’s leg with my steel-tipped cleat in the mid-thigh trying to break up a double play with a high slide. After completing the play, the shortstop, Rivera, grimaced and dusted his now bloodstained grey pants and then locked eyes with mine. A look of mutual understanding immediately passed between us; this pivotal game was worth fighting for and although I probably should not have sliced his leg so far up, the situation called for, actually demanded, my aggressive action. Such is the nature of true baseball: respecting the game as such earns the respect of the opponent. Even some actions considered slightly “dirty” such as sliding hard into opponents are essential components of this respect. These situations are a part of the “Unwritten Rules” understood by players of the game. In context, many of the seemingly aggressive tactics are pivotal to the sanctity of the game itself. Playing hard can mean giving one’s best effort the whole time, but in certain circumstances it also means sacrificing or acting to defend our teammates. For example, taking too long to admire a home run or excessively heckling the pitcher will earn you or your teammate a fastball near the chin area. In a situation of blatant disrespect for the game, it almost becomes the responsibility of the other team to remind you and your team to respect the sport, even though to the casual observer the reaction could be seen as dirty. These controversial tactics still appear in high school baseball. Excessive celebration on the school diamond could still earn a pitch to the ribcage. Breaking up a double play is still a must, though CIF rules are stricter in that area. Just last year a Poly player was asked to leave a game because he glared and menacingly stepped towards a pitcher that, given the circumstances, had likely hit him on purpose. These near-hostile interactions are a just part of the sport that deserves the respect of all its participants and demands observance of the “Unwritten Rules.”
TENNIS Weeks of intense practice have paid off for the JV girls tennis team, which has started the season with victories over Flintridge Prep and Mayfield Senior. The Panthers came out on top despite a lack of healthy players. Experienced senior Elly Debreu and junior Batoul Al-Shammari combined to beat Mayfield’s best doubles team 6-3. Freshman Julia Wohl led the charge against rival Flintridge Prep. Down by three games at one point, Wohl battled back and triumphed 6-3 as the entire team enthusiastically cheered her on. -Maya Omori
FOOTBALL The JV football team has started off the season strong with a 4-1 record. After losing in the season opener to Brethren Christian, the team has bounced back with wins against Malibu, St. Anthony, Gabrielino, and Sage Hill by scores of 27-0, 14-7, 35-8 and 47-32 respectively. Freshman Griffin Carter sparked the team to the win against Sage Hill last Thursday with multiple scoring drives. The team looks to continue its momentum in their next game against Chadwick on October 14 at Chadwick. -David D’Amico
the paw print
Athlete of the Issue:
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By The Numbers
The score of the Prep vs. Webb football game. Prep lost by forfeit due to a shortage of players.
Runner Michael Caughron’s time at the Kenny Staub Invitational. Caughron placed 13th in the race.
Saves recorded by senior goalkeeper Colin Woolway this season.
Number of tackles senior Nathan Hamming has in the first 5 games of the season.
October 14, 2011
Tennis serves past expectations, towards playoffs
By HUNTER WORLAND Student contributor
Despite early-season injuries, the Panther girls tennis team has gotten off to its best start in years and hopes to continue its strong streak into the postseason. The team powered through its first nonleague games, entering Prep League play with a 5-1 record and high expectations. In their first league match, the Panthers lost to Flintridge 10-8 but remained optimistic. Senior doubles player Victoria Morgan noted: “The Rebels are a strong team, there is no denying that. However, I think injuries were fatal to us in that game.” In the match, Poly’s number one singles player, Katherine Peng, sustained an ankle injury during the second set and was unable to finish. Freshman Anna Lamb also had undiagnosed tendinitis in her wrists, but played through the injury. “Fortunately, it has not taken much time for those injuries to heal, so we will have the entire team out there again pretty soon,” Morgan said. Still, head coach Howard Farer believes the remainder of the season will not be easy. He highlighted that the matches against Westridge, Chadwick and Flintridge Prep will be particularly difficult.
Flintridge Prep when they all won their respective sets. The six returning players are also a powerful force and have scored well in recent matches. “We are a stronger team this year with the addition of the new freshmen, and the experience [of the upperclassmen] has been a great teacher for us,” Coach Farer commented. “Our expectation is to be competitive in playoffs, which seems very realistic if we maintain the momentum begun by the beginning of our season,” Morgan commented. “The team has rallied under the motto ‘Every point counts,’ which epitomizes our strong motivation to make our dream of a successful playoff run a reality.” The team lost its first match of the season against Arcadia 12-6 but bounced back to win five consecutive nonleague games. Two of the wins were against Temple City and South Pasadena by !"##$%&'()*'+,-%.%&/'%0"1%0#2-+ scores of 17-1 in both matches, Wearing the team mantra of “Every Point and another was a 18-0 blowout Counts,” freshman Brooke Olson tosses for a victory against La Salle. serve. The team is on pace to post a and roadblock to potential playoff much better record than that of success later in the year. last year when it finished 7-10. Morgan credits the three new The combination of experienced freshmen, Lamb, Brooke Olson upperclassmen and talented freshand Lily Wu, for the team’s recent men has worked so far for the team success. Wu and Lamb are strong so far and hopefully for the future. singles players and Olson is paired “We should be competitive in the with Aria Griffin in doubles. The years to come,” said Coach Farer. freshmen showed their skill against
Athlete of the Future:
Chadwick beat Poly 12-6 in the most recent match, but through hard work and determination, the Panthers hope to respond with a victory in their next meeting. Chadwick also presents a challenge
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The Panther Scoreboard
Boys Football: Poly vs. Sage Hill 28-0 (Poly)
Girls Volleyball: Poly vs. Rio Hondo 3-0 (Poly)
Boys Water Polo: Poly vs. Webb 20-6 (Poly)