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THE PROSPECTOR

FEATURES: District IDC Exchange Program investigated in detail by staff OPINIONS: Violence in Media CUPERTINO HIGH SCHOOL’S

VOLUME 53 NO. 7

10100 FINCH AVENUE, CUPERTINO CA

FLIPSIDE: Rider Victoria Gee

ONLINE AT WWW.CHSPROSPECTOR.ORG

APRIL 27, 2012

The Economics of Clubs Days: a riskier gamble than assumed CHRIS CAI flip side assistant

44 clubs and organizations, 43 different foods and drinks but only one brunch to eat it all. Clubs Day comes on Friday the 27th of April this year and the food ranges from Otter Pops to chicken cups. While the students are using Clubs Day to put on some extra weight, the clubs behind the event are also using the students to fill the linings of their pockets with some much needed cash. Clubs at the school, unless otherwise affiliated with an outside organization, do not receive any funding from external sources. Club funds generally come from the admission fees that each applicant pays when signing up to join a club, or from various fundraiser sales that the club may choose to do throughout the year. Even clubs such as robotics, which charges its member sixty dollars upon admission, require additional funding in order participate in their competitions.

There’s a lot of potential to how much money clubs day could bring, but it is up to the students to make the money for the clubs. - Senior Michael Chu Clubs Days are important to many students because they provide a tasty alternative to ordinary cafeteria food. Rather than having to eating corn dogs and egg pizzas, for two days every year the students have the choice of dozens of beloved food items, available to them for a more expensive price than they would be sold normally. Because of the prices, it is commonly assumed that Clubs Day is an immensely profitable affair for the clubs; in truth the revenue generated during Clubs Day provided no significant economic benefit to most of the clubs involved. In a recent survey conducted by The Prospector, a few of the larger clubs, such as CSF and FBLA, were able to earn larger profits that ranged in the hundreds, however that success was not shared with all clubs. Some clubs made a profit around fifty dollars and on the opposite end of see ECONOMICS OF CLUBS DAY pg. 2

ALL PHOTOS BY JESSE ZHOU

Students dominate district art show JASON CHEN photo editor

From April 3 to April 21, the 32nd Annual District Art Showcase was held at the Sunnyvale Art Gallery, displaying student made art from the FUHSD District and ROP programs. The showcase featured works that teachers thought were stellar and representative of their school. In the free-and-open-to-public showcase, the pieces were professionally hung or specially mounted in art rooms, which are separated into different genres. The showcase included a diverse range of materials used by artists, also known as media, such as print making, paints, graphite, plaster, and photographs. The works of art reflect each school’s different style and form of expression. Senior Vanessa Chung, who is in Lynbrook’s ROP studio art, submitted works of art for Tino and Lynbrook. “The styles of both schools are different. It is nice how the showcase displays different artwork from the district because it can show how the different teachers teach,” Chung said. Art teacher Jily Mandeson explains how the showcase reflects every artist’s growth over the years as each student puts in tremendous amounts of effort. The students convey their thoughts and feelings through their selection of media and style. Each student harnesses a unique means of self-expression as they tap into their creative reservoirs in search of a theme and genre for their art piece. Mandeson is satisfied with the introspective pieces students have drawn or constructed this year. “I am particularly proud of Cupertino for it’s got very honest work because my students have a lot of reflection,” Mandeson added. On April 12th, a reception was held at the art gallery to present awards to students for each category. Junior Irene Wang of Mandeson’s Art 4 class views the competition as a once in a lifetime experience. Wang was awarded Best of School at the showcase.

ALL PHOTOS BY JESSE ZHOU

3-D ART DISPLAYS | (top left) Senior Maral Mianji was awarded the Fremont Art Dept. Chair Award for her im-

maculate sculpture named “Vase & Vase”; (top right) In the category of Mixed Media, Senior Helen Mueller constructed various decorative masks in “Masked Perspective” ; (bottom) Senior Vanessa Chung abstractly depicted the change in time-tellers by developing a watch representing an individual era of time, named “Revolution of Time”.

“I feel very honored to win this prestigious award. I am motivated from this award because in the future, I’ll be able to pursue more art interests as a hobby, and maybe I can improve my current skills,” Wang said. All of the art teachers together chose which pieces of art were most deserving of awards. Students other than Wang who received awards were Haysol Chung, Junior Trevor Moore, Junior Ksenia Koulechova and Sophomore Jane Li. Teachers and volunteers representing each school put in great amounts of effort to organize and execute a successful art showcase in order to give a professional touch to the showcase. The teachers and staff were able to make the art show a serious yet simultaneously fun experience for the participants and bystanders alike.. “It’s just really special because it is just fun, rich, and story telling. Each student show[s] years of their development as an artist and coming together with different media,” Mandeson said.


2 NEWS

THE PROSPECTOR

the Prospector 2011-2012 STAFF

Cupertino High School Established 1958 Vol LIIl., No.VI | 2012

editors-in-chief azadeh rongere alya omar news editor abhishek zaveri opinions editor katie martin features editor chris cai lifestyles editor natasha sharma sports editors sunwoo jeong flip side editors kevin chu copy editors michelle cheung anand hemmady business manager virena galotra

Renovations to cater to growing student body 2014-2015 school year. The new team and weight room, which will be built near the tennis courts, will feature a team room Although astroturf has replaced the field and the able to simultaneously accommodate two teams and Pioneer Park bathrooms have been remodeled, further a P.E. classroom designed to hold up to fifty students. construction will begin this summer. Renovations in- Completion is anticipated for the 2013-2014 school clude a new library and cafeteria that will house the year. guidance and career centers, as well as an improved Due to the extensiveness of the project, Rodriteam and weight room. Additionally, six portable class- guez expects the construction to have a significant rooms will be installed on the grass next to the 400s impact on the lives of staff and students. Since the wing. These projects are funded by Measure B, a bond bus circle will be closed for the entirety of the conpassed in 2008 which allots $198 million to upgrades struction, Rodriguez recommends that students at Fremont Union High School District campuses. bike, walk or carpool to school in order to combat While the present library and offices will not be further traffic congestion. Though a temporary dropdemolished, they will be converted into classrooms in off design on Tilson Avenue is being prepared, adanticipation of the exponential school population in- ministrators are urging students to avoid using cars crease that is projected to occur over the next ten years. as much as possible during construction. “[There “Ever ywill be] easily one Everyone knows how bad the traffic is how badknows over two thou- the sand kids for in the morning. It’s going to be worse traffic is in the the first time It’s — you’re losing your drop-off area, morning. next year,” Asgoing to be sistant Principlus you have a significant number of worse ... you’re pal John Rolosing your - Assistant Principal John Rodriguez drop-off area, driguez said. construction workers. “We’re not deplus you have a signed to have that number of students.” significant number of construction workers ... on site These renovations are intended to better suit the also,” Rodriguez said. needs of a growing school community as well as modThe plans and designs for the remodel have been ernize the campus. The two-story library, cafeteria and in the works for several years, and the construction administration building will be constructed on the site process is likely to take nearly as long. But these new of the current cafeteria, but will also occupy part of the facilities will mark the end of this lengthy project, quad and bus circle. Administrators predict that this and the school will be equipped to satisfy a rapidly building will be ready for use at the beginning of the increasing student population. KATIE MARTIN features assistant

APRIL 27, 2012

Economics of Clubs Day (cont. pg. 1)

the profit scale, there were also clubs that made zero profit negative profits from their sales. In an interview with the ASB club commissioner Michael Chu, Chu said, “The reason why it is often not so economically successful, is that some students purposely wait till the end of clubs day to buy food. So it doesn’t benefit clubs as much as it could. There’s a lot of potential to how much money clubs day could bring for clubs, but it is up to the students to make the money for the clubs.” Larger clubs and clubs which sold more popular brand name foods tended to do better than other clubs which sold less popular dishes. Clubs that sold In-NOut burgers or Chipotle burritos were almost always sold out before Clubs Day is over, but for the smaller clubs selling drinks or snacks, Clubs Day is more of a risky gamble, placing much needed club funds on the line to purchase food that may not sell well. In most of the clubs that participated in The Prospector’s survey, the profit from Clubs Day was incomparable to the income generated by other means, such as club admission prices. Nevertheless, for what it is worth, Clubs Day does have its benefits. It is an event where people unfamiliar with clubs can learn about them through the purchase of food.

ARTIST RENDERINGS OF CAMPUS RENOVATIONS | (LEFT) The

news assistants

nikhil kanthi harini jaganathan jason chen

opinions assistants

jesse zhou anna huang chris tracey

features assistants

virena galotra laura kao

lifestyles assistants

hong suh jason chen

sports assistants

sindhu gnanasambadan

flip side assistant

chris yoon madhuri sathish

adviser ann peck

editorial policy “The Prospector” is an open forum of expression for student editors to inform and educate their readers. It will not be reviewed by or restrained by school officials prior to publication or distribution. Advisors may and should coach and discuss content during the writing process. The staff of “The Prospector” seeks to recognize individuals, events and ideas and bring news to the Cupertino community in an accurate, professional and unbiased manner. “The Prospector” will not avoid publishing a story solely on the basis of possible dissent or controversy. If you believe an error has been made or wish to have your opinion expressed in “The Prospector,” please contact us via mail or email. Letters sent become the sole property of “The Prospector” and can be edited for length, clarity or accuracy. “The Prospector” editorial board reserves the right to accept or reject any ad in accordance with its advertising policy.

Contact Us The Prospector 10100 Finch Avenue Cupertino, CA 95014 prospector.chs@gmail.com

renovations of the bus circle and the two-story cafeteria are depicted in this graphic. This major renovation on Finch Avenue will halt students’ ability to utilize the bus circle indefinitely, and this section is expected to be completed by the beginnning of the 2014 school year ; (RIGHT) Another graphic depicting the quad shows the drastic difference between the current layout and the renovation. With the addition of shaded tables and stone benches, the area has been enhanced greatly. In the background, the two-story cafeteria combined with the guidance offices.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOHN RODRIGUEZ

Environmental Club educates and empowers NIKHIL KANTHI news assistant

Apart from protesting hydraulic fracturing and raising awareness about pollution problem at Lehigh Cement Factory, Environmental Club also gives out Chipotle gift cards to students who recycle. Less than a semester old, this club totes an impressive record of educating students about environmental issues and promoting more ecologically conscious decisions. The first meeting was held on January 17, 2012. Within just fourteen weeks, the club has raised awareness for various environmental concerns and laid the groundwork for a more ecologically conscious student behavior. “Our first goal, the more ‘general’ one, is increasing the school’s awareness of broad environmental issues and thinking of ways to take positive action towards the resolution of these issues,” club president junior Youseph Pavlovic said. At each of the meetings, environmental concerns such as hydraulic fracturing and pollution are presented and discussed. Events may be worldwide, but local issues are discussed as well, such as the damage the Lehigh Cement Factory does to its surrounding ecosystems. “We spend many meetings providing baseline information on important environmental problems- factory pollution, for instance, or the growth of landfills,” Pavlovic said. Raising awareness does not stop at the member level. During International Week, Environmental Club gave a presentation about the ills of hydraulic fracturing in the Wagon Wheel to the general audience. Not only are the impacts of these issues discussed, but the club also talks about ways that the members can be active in fighting these problems. Apart from raising awareness, the club also tries to promote environmentally conscious student behavior. One way

NIKHIL KANTHI

TAKING ACTION | Club president Youseph Pavlovic presents a PowerPoint presentation concerning the

past of environmentalism in the United States and successful national activist groups in an attempt to educate the members of the club.

the club is achieving this goal is the Chipotle Recycling Raffle, where club members hand out raffle tickets to average students they catch recycling their trash. Club members can also ask teachers to help them hand out the raffles to recycling students. The winners of the raffles win a gift card to Chipotle. Environmental Club’s strength is in its approach to tackling environmental issues. Instead of simply preaching from the pulpit or constantly organizing cleanups, the club takes a two-pronged approach that educates and empowers their members. “We educate the student body on what the exact issues and dangers are regarding the environment today. This way, we not only host environmentally beneficial events, we also help students gain a fuller understanding in what the issues they are working for are,” club Treasurer junior Prachi Joshi said. With just fourteen weeks under their belt, the club is quite young and there is a lot of room for growth. The meetings, held every Tuesday brunch in Room 318, are open to all students.


THE PROSPECTOR

APRIL 27, 2012

JNHS students place in national Japan Bowl competitions HARINI JAGANATHAN news assistant

PHOTO COURTESY OF NEIL SALAZAR

EFFORT YIELDS RESULTS | The Japan Bowl team proudly holds their two 2nd place trophies after the awards ceremony held in the 4H Youth Center in Maryland.

On April 12 and 13, eight students from Japanese National Honor Society competed in the 2012 National Japan Bowl in Washington D.C. Three different teams competed in the level II, III and IV divisions. The level II and III teams placed second while the level IV team placed eighth overall. Competition levels correspond to the course levels at school. This is the fourth year students have competed in the two-day long event, which consists of cultural activities as well as competitions. The contests test students’ language skills and knowledge

Hundreds participate in schoolwide lip dub On April 10, the school debuted its first ever “lip dub.” ASB encouraged all clubs, teams and organizations on campus to participate in the filming of the lip dub to display the school’s diversity. Hundreds of students and faculty participated in the filming of the lip dub. The video was filmed in two takes.

JASON CHEN

After a week of editing, ASB held a showing of the lip dub in the school’s theater. The theater was completely filled by hordes of students who were anxious to see the product of their time and effort on filming day. Reception to the video was generally positive after the 10 minutes of play. The lip dub was initially meant to premiere in front of students at the Hall of Fame rally on May 18. ASB was hoping to show it then because students from other schools around the district would be attending for the IDC Exchange at the school. Due to strong student interest, however, ASB chose to push the screening forward and show the lip dub at a earlier date. COMPILED BY ANAND HEMMADY

2747 DOTH Cupertino HS 8x5 3.12

of Japanese culture in a quiz-show style. Senior Kathy Liu participated in the level IV competition and this was her third year competing. “We’re very proud of how all of the teams performed, especially level II for placing second, because it was their first year,” Liu said. The students competing have been preparing as a group since last summer. “The hardest thing about Japan Bowl is that they give you a very vague idea of the questions they are going to ask you,” Liu said. “They give you an era of Japan’s history and you have to learn every single event that happened in that era to be prepared.” The students participate in two tests

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and a conversation round. The top three teams advance to a final jeopardy-style quiz round. Both the level II and level III teams advanced to the championship round. “[The championship round] was really scary because you’re in front of this entire audience, and if you answer a question wrong you feel like you let your team down,” junior Lisa Yin said. Yin and Liu both found Japan Bowl to be rewarding in expanding their Japanese knowledge. “We learned a lot about Japanese plants, US-Japanese relations and things that you don’t get exposed to often in a regular Japanese class,” Yin said.

Junior creates nonprofit to aid the disabled Founded almost five months ago, WorldWeDream was established by junior Shubhankar Jain to help the disabled achieve unlimited success. This organization was influenced by Jain’s personal experiences of struggle and the ignorance demonstrated by others towards his autistic brother, Paras. For instance, Shubhankar recalls that when Paras was kicking the seat in front of him on an airplane, the bothered passenger threatened Paras. Jain kept telling his brother to stop kicking the seat, but Paras’ autism prevented him from doing so. Although the commuter eventually changed seats with another traveler, the transpired event still remains an influential aspect in Jain’s life.

COMPILED BY AZADEH RONGERE

WorldWeDream not only promotes awareness on disabilities, but also enables people with special needs to be recognized as equals to their competitors. Jain makes video resumes to highlight their positive traits, which would otherwise be overlooked on a paper resume. “By finding jobs and attending college, this largely unrepresented group can contribute to the community, making life better for all,” said Jain.

JASON CHEN

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OPINIONS

APRIL 27, 2012

e r u t l u c r u o n i e Carnag A reflection of reality JESSE ZHOU opinions assistant

Songs like “Pumped Up Kicks” and games like “Call of Duty” supposedly carry questionable messages to audiences in society today that promote belligerence and lack of empathy. However, the big question is if violent media can actually influence people into behaving violently themselves. While proponents of banning such media constantly try to link real life and fictional brutality together, the answer is actually much more complex. In fact, many of the variable messages violent media contains actually serve to entertain and placate viewers rather than influence them for the worse. It is rather difficult to imagine such good-intentioned purposes when there are many examples that do not have positive morals at all. Movies like “Saw” and games like “Gears of War” seem to have only blood and gore for the hell of it, and proponents for banning violent media can usually bring such cases to the forefront of their cause. While the aforementioned examples may indeed have excessive aggression, seeing such aggression for some is necessary to release suppressed feelings that could potentially become frighteningly real. In other words, such media acts as an emotional punching bag for people who do not know where else to release their feelings. A recent 2007 study proves such a point; it reported that most kids play violent video games because it either helps them relax or get their anger out. Why should violent media of any kind be any different? Another recent study also shows something else that is astounding: Arrest rates for juvenile murderers have fallen more than 71.9 percent between 1995 and 2008, and video game sales have quadrupled during that same 13 years. This correlation shows how first, violent video games cannot have catastrophic effects like many people imagine, and second, how video games can have an inverse effect on violence instead of something that is directly proportional. Additionally, one must remember that violence and war came before media, not the other way around. To say that violent media always results in violent behavior is like saying SAT classes always result in high scores. The latter, unsurprisingly, is not true 100 percent of the time. But what if violence does occur? Is it possible to link violent media and the crime together? No, because most of the time, violence can just be linked to either innate aggressive personality or abusive backgrounds like bullying. Take the Virginia Tech shooter for example; many have said that the killer often stared blankly into space in his free time and was blatantly antisocial. He was never influenced by violent media because the violence was already inside him, much like any other resentful human in the world. Violent media, admittedly, can potentially influence young children because their minds have yet to be molded. However, for more mature audiences who already know the difference between what is right and wrong, violent media is nothing more than entertainment some and a world of escape for others. To say that it causes only detriment would be purely ridiculous.

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Negative effects prevail CHRIS TRACEY opinions assistant

According to the World Health Organization, over one million people die each year due to violence. Many have debated the pros and cons of incorporating violence in entertainment. Some popular songs, video games and movies contain a lot of vicious content. In movies, wars are often portrayed as exciting events, meant for entertainment. Violence in entertainment has adverse effects on people, potentially leading to disastrous consequences. Hollywood films often characterize wars as exciting and adventurous. Of course, there are other entertainment options that are harmless or even beneficial, such as the movie “Gandhi,” that show the horrors of violence to promote peace and the anti-war sense. Most Hollywood movies perpetrate violence. They do not show the true effects or what realistically happens in battles. Viewing films leaves mental impressions upon most people. Moviegoers remember specific scenes afterwards. However, for a small minority, viewing violent or extreme footage, whether real or computer generated, creates lasting effects that can ricochet into disturbed thoughts that influence their lives. In extreme cases, such ideas can lead to a school shooting or to a murder. History teacher Jay Lawson expressed such sentiments to the students in his World History class. “The more people see [violence], the more they do it,” Lawson said. “There’s a copycat mentality. If there’s a school shooting, others think, ‘Ooh, he’s famous!’” Lawson believes the answer lies in education. More people need to be educated on the issue of violence in order for it to be resolved. “We need to fix education,” Lawson said. “There should be an environment of respect. Enforce it, and then it will become part of our nature. Laws will come first.” With the internet gaining more and more content daily, people’s access to such content is constantly increasing. When video games that promote violence, like Grand Theft Auto, and similar songs, like Eminem’s 2000 hit “Kim” are filling teenagers’ lives, they are left with the responsibility to acknowledge such entertainment simply as entertainment and not guides to life. Disastrous consequences could result from being exposed to this kind of material if no action is taken. Without sounding like a nostalgic old citizen, violence in media is in a large part responsible for causing the abysmal events such as school shootings and murders. Violence in media is not merely a topic to debate or complain about; instead, it is an authentic issue with very real consequences. Although some do not react physically after viewing traumatizing videos or playing violent games, those who do have an issue cannot be ignored. Violence affects people more negatively than positively. This problem is not easily resolved, but a simple yet effective solution to the issue could be to reinforce accuracy in the ratings system. In recent years, movie and video game ratings have crept slowly towards being more lenient. For example, some movies that would have been R-rated have become PG-13 merely to increase profits. Making such ratings stricter or more serious could have a positive effect, bringing about more peace to our society.

CHRIS CAI


THE PROSPECTOR

APRIL 27, 2012

Graduation cords must recognize all service VICTORIA DUAN opinions assistant

On campus, only students who are members of “honor societies” are recognized at graduation for being an active member of a club. Students from non-honors service clubs remain unrecognized for their work despite their dedication to their club and contributions to their community. Honor cords are twisted cords with tassels on the ends that students wear around their necks on their graduation day. Traditionally, cords have been used to honor seniors who have shown spectacular academic or other honorable achievements. At this school, graduation cords for involvement in clubs are presented only to students who are members of the six honor societies that currently exist on campus. Honor societies require their members to meet a set of re-

quirements they have set for their club, such as GPA requirements or predetermined service hours that must be met by students. National Honor Society members, for example, must attend two events a semester to remain members of the club, while Japanese National Honor Society members are required to complete six hours of service for the various events that the club hosts. On the other hand, non-honors service clubs are not given the authority of requiring their members to complete a certain number of events or meet a certain number of hours to call themselves members. In this case, any student who pays the club fee is automatically admitted as a member. While honor societies do have more requirements for their club members to meet, this isn’t to say that students who are in non-honors clubs are less dedicated to their organizations. Nor does this mean that non-honors clubs are academically inferior or host second-rate events. Many activities non-honors clubs engage in are equal if not more rigorous than those in honor societies. So if the events are similar and members are just as dedi-

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cated, why is it that only honor societies are honored with cords at the senior graduation? There are members of Red Cross and Interact and FBLA and many other non-honors clubs that put a lot of work into planning fundraisers and planning events and volunteering. But these seniors graduate unrecognized by the school for their dedication and efforts in helping to better their community. Rather than awarding only students in honor societies with honor cords, all students who have shown phenomenal participation in actively bettering their community should be allowed cords. Rather than letting a student’s club determine whether or not they graduate with a cord, it should be the time a student puts into a club and the dedication they have shown over the course of their four years at school that determines the matter. The honor of wearing a cord should be based on merit and achievement rather than the title of a student’s respective club. Service hours are service hours no matter in what context, and the school should recognize all students who take time from their schedules to help improve the community they live in.

What does a graduation cord signify? They act as a superficial incentive to participate in extracurricular activities -Senior Menglin Ruan

They are kind of outdated ... I don’t think that you need a golden cord to show off that you were a very good person in the community.

-Senior Abdelwahab Bourai

They really show how hard some people have worked ... because you’ve completed the service requirements as well as maintained the GPA ... I feel like they are well deserved . -Senior Delia Cannon

They show that you’ve put some effort into other people and helping the community apart from your academics as well - Senior Megha Raganathan

ALL PHOTOS BY JASON CHEN

Staff Editorial: ASB elections unnecessarily ruthless Although politics is by its nature full of conflict, this year’s ASB Council Elections were especially charged and candidates when to new extremes to win over voters. To be fair, even so-called professional politicians fall into the same pitfalls while campaigning, and ASB receives more than its fair share of blame whenever an activity doesn’t satisfy the entire student body, which seems to be all the time. Objectively, the elections were administered in a smooth and fair manner; the problems lie in the way in which some candidates campaigned and other students responded. This year’s competition, for whatever reason, was especially brutal, with campaigning oftentimes descending into a complete lack of common sense or courtesy. Some shmoozing

techniques, such as making music or dance videos, were obviously pandering, while others, such as spamming people to urge them vote, were downright annoying. Some candidates even attempted to win in pairs, making joint Facebook events and encouraging people to vote for their partner as well as themselves. While it’s true that United States presidential candidates choose running mates who will increase their own electability, our system allows voters to pick any president and vice president combination, rendering the forming of teams obsolete and somewhat presumptuous. These methods, however flawed, do not excuse the disrespectful behavior that some students displayed towards candidates’ running efforts. While satire and commentary

are necessary components of a healthy political system, rudeness and personal attacks have no place in the political arena, where ironically they happen to appear most often. Campaigns such as “Nobody 2012” and “Harvey Dent” made veiled and clever, but still biting, remarks about the nature of high school politics. “Nobody” was particularly scathing towards certain student candidates that it deemed to be disingenuous, perhaps forgetting that they are still more students than candidates. These parody campaigns, though at times pushing the envelope, were at least conceived with a purpose: to provoke discussion, to expose supposedly unfit candidates, to advance some form of truth. Other methods of showing dissent, such as defacing posters, are

decidedly less thoughtful and acceptable. These graffiti situations can be attributed more to immaturity than political disagreement but they are reprehensible nonetheless and should not be tolerated, especially during as sensitive a time as elections, when so many nerves are already frayed.If a candidate’s chances of winning were dependant on the strength of his or her desire, there is no doubt that everyone running would be elected. Instead of trying to communicate their earnestness, however, perhaps candidates should instead reflect on why they want the position so desperately in the first place. These reasons, when presented to the school, would convince voters in a way that Facebook chats and catchy songs cannot.


FEATURES

APRIL 27, 2012

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LYnBROOK VIRENA GALOTRA features assistant

Although Lynbrook High School is only a couple miles away, the culture at the school varies significantly from that of ours. Sophomore Yiann Chou participated in this year’s IDC Exchange at Lynbrook and explored this drastically different environment. Chou observed several differences between the schools, including the fact that Lynbrook’s campus was significantly smaller and that the students seemed to dress in a homogeneous manner. However she found the rally to be the most memorable event of the day. “The rallies there seemed livelier. Everyone was cheering.” Chou said. Chou was also impressed with the school’s dance team and found the student to be more engaging and entrepreneur-like than she had expected.

A peek into the system

NIKHIL KANTHI news assistant

Locked into this one district is a world’s worth of diversity. The student body, the classes and the campus size all vary across Cupertino. Each campus comes with its own flavor and mentality, even if the differences are subtle. The different high schools offer a different experience, and the IDC Exchange program allows students to see the high school experience through a different lens. It is also a lens to the district’s Board of Trustees, offering the student perspective upon changes in the district. Juniors Grace Kim and David Won are the school’s IDC Commissioners and Representatives. A peek into Won’s and Kim’s roles in the IDC program reveals that their tasks encompass far more activities than simply the five annual high school exchanges. “Of course the main idea is to promote intra-district relations and expose students to different environments, but a key role of the IDC program is to be a link between students and the district,” Kim

said. Common meeting topics are new policies, construction and suggestions to the Board of Trustees, the governing body of the entire district. While the Board handles the decisions, the representatives talk about the impact of those decisions. Kim said, “We’re basically the student perspective they don’t get to see.” The representatives provide a pivotal insight into the students, the final recipients of the policies enacted by the district. The IDC Representatives and the school’s ASB President attend the district-wide meetings, where they discuss issues in each school and talk about events other than student exchanges. One example would be IDC Fantastics, which was hosted in Fremont High School in February and was open to all students in the district. “IDC Fantastics would be a prime example of where we were able to create a large scale event that many students participated in and attended,” said Kim. Given the success of Fantastics, similar intra-district gather-

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APRIL 27, 2012

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THE PROSPECTOR

K F r e m o n t Homestead MONta vista

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ALYA OMAR editor-in-chief

LAURA KAO features assistant

MICHELLE CHEUNG copy editor

While the IDC Exchange is seen as a thrilling experience, to seniors Jenn Amick, Grady Li and Delia Cannon their excursion to Fremont High School taught them that there is no place like home. Cannon said, “Fremont has a lot more students and a lot more space but it also feels a bit more disconnected. The teachers and administration are closer to the students here.” Cannon also noted that both schools are parallel in their school spirit and positivity towards learning. However, Li was taken aback by their unconventional rallies. “Everybody sits down at the rallies, and when something interesting happens, they stand up...but then they have to sit down again, so it was like a huge squatfest,” Li said.

Visiting Homestead sparked curiosity in senior Shona Hemmady regarding different aspects of other schools in the district as well as our own. Hemmady shadowed a friend at the Homestead IDC Exchange. Unlike typical IDC Exchanges, Homestead’s happened on its Pajama Day rather than on a rally day. “We actually didn’t go during a rally day, but it was pretty cool going on a normal day - though it was pajama day, so it was more comfy-feeling... [and] relaxed,” Hemmady said. Throughout the day, Hemmady noticed several distinctions between Homestead and Cupertino including Homestead’s much larger campus and their double block schedule. “The different classes were interesting.” Hemmady said.

When senior Rebecca Tso walked onto the Monta Vista campus as an IDC Exchange student, she came prepared for school as if it were any other day. Tso’s exchange day happened to take place on a regular day at Monta Vista. Tso described her impression of the school as big, open and inviting. However, she had some expectations that were not met. “Monta Vista is notorious for its cutthroat learning environment, and I didn’t get any of it from there,” Tso said. “The schools really aren’t that different - the teachers are just as caring and lovable, and the classroom atmosphere is just as friendly.” Her biggest takeaway from the exchange was that one should never believe in the myths of other schools until one sees the truth for oneself.

Five schools. 10,252 students. One district. The Fremont Union High School District. Separate points on a map that are intricately interconnected; the distance between each school bridged by the IDC program

gs are on the radar for future ars. The scope of this tournament eatly surpasses that of the IDC xchanges. Coordination and execution gatherings of this caliber will become a gnificant part of an IDC Commissioner’s le. Whether it is experiencing a differt school for one day or bringing hundreds of udents around the city together, IDC is quickly coming the glue that spans the length of the disct. It also is the glue that adheres each school to the oard of Trustees by forming the invaluable information nk between the two. There are notions and experiences that are universal students regardless of the high school they come from. It is e differences that give each school its distinct flavor, and IDC the tour guide to this world of diversity.

COMPILED BY CHRIS CAI


LIFESTYLES

APRIL 27, 2012

THE BAY OF (GREEN) PIGS

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HOW MOBILE GAMES HAVE TAKEN OVER OUR LIVES ERIC JANG lifestyles assistant

the clothing MANual

MAN 4.

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Gone are the days when the best-selling video games were the ones with the best stories or the most stunning graphics. Our generation’s short attention span and addiction to portable iDevices have made us lazy even when it comes to gaming. A new type of entertainment has emerged to suit this mobile lifestyle, centered around simple but addictive mobile apps that achieve viral success by encouraging friends to compete with each other over the Internet. It is not surprising that simple games have emerged in our 21st century fast food culture. Games like “Angry Birds” and “Temple Run” use the same strategies that have made fast food so appealing -- cheap, boneless and easy to consume. For example, even the most inexperienced novice can quickly grasp the concept of flinging birds at pigs in “Angry Birds.” The recent viral hit, “Draw Something,” is little more than a minimalistic “Pictionary” game and yet has rocketed to the “top 10” in the iTunes store. Although these trendy games lack the breathtaking visuals of advanced gaming platforms, they still provide an immersing and even addictive experience. Many popular mobile games add a touch of mystery to entice new players. Game titles like “Fruit Ninja” and “Angry Birds” draw attention to the games themselves and hook the curious user into the lighthearted absurdity of the experience. New social networking technologies have made these games more than just sociable; games like “Doodle Jump” and “Temple Run” keep track of achievements and scoreboards, encouraging players to compete with their Facebook friends. Apps that build on top of the Facebook platform can spread quickly between friends and communities. Today’s smartphones allow players to bring their entertainment everywhere, and as a result these games have literally followed us to our dining tables, beds and bathrooms. Simple games bring us the conveniences of fast-food-style gaming that users can enjoy anytime and anywhere.

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ABHISHEK ZAVERI news editor

Clothing may not define a person’s traits and character, but what an individual wears evokes certain perceptions and presents an image to those around them. Namely, an outfit can display a sense of confidence and pride, or result in an image that conveys a lack of conviction and interest. The advantage of being well dressed is a dramatic boost to a person’s self-esteem and a noticeable change to how others react to a person’s presence. Here are some basic essentials to a successful outfit in menswear: 1. Basic Tees - Whether it is used as an undershirt or the main part of your outfit, a basic v-neck or crew neck tee can easily complete an outfit. Buying a variety of colors and styles can diversify your daily wardrobe, and accentuate the rest of your outfit as well. 2. Khaki Pants/Chinos - Respected as a casual and semi-formal look, a pair of khaki chinos, a type of pants, can be worn to varying occasions, depending on the rest of your outfit. Additionally, loafers or boat shoes can complete the outfit effortlessly. Chinos can be worn with endless combinations of sweaters, tees, jackets, and more.

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3. Shoes - Known as the most comfortable fit and the easiest to put on, sneakers and loafers are a must for everyday wear. Even though black and navy are the preferred colors for these items, a variety of colors can be found at stores like Vans and Sperry Top-Sider, now open in Valley Fair. 4. Parka/All-Weather Jacket/Blazers - Windbreakers and parkas are the best outerwear pieces for the unpredictable Bay Area weather. Usable in rainy and warm weather, parkas can be worn over sweaters and hoodies to provide extra protection against the cold, or over a t-shirt to add another element to your outfit. Found in various stores, most popular at The North Face, this item is another essential that does not need to be flashy, but can add sophistication to an outfit. 5. Accessories - If worn with simplicity, accessories such as belts, watches, and bracelets can become the “details” that fully complete your wardrobe. Leather is the preferred option when selecting accessories, but watch companies like Timex also have analog watches for wear. Moreover, leather belts and bracelets of brown or black color add a dynamic to t-shirt or longsleeve shirt you are wearing, as well as blue jeans. While these items seem miniscule and unnoticeable, they separate you from the crowd.


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THE PROSPECTOR

MARCH 28, 2012

The Dangers of Excessive Tanning Overexposure of UV radiation can lead to harmful consequences KEVIN CHU flipside editor

FUN IN THE SUN? think again! 1. Indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanners are 74 percent more likely to develop melanoma than those who have never tanned indoors. 2. Nearly 30 million people tan indoors in the U.S. every year39; 2.3 million of them are teens. 3. On an average day, more than one million Americans use tanning salons. 4. People who use tanning beds are 2.5 times more likely to develop squamous cell carcinoma and 1.5 times more likely to develop basal cell carcinoma. NATASHA SHARMA SKIN CANCER FOUNDATION

A month after the official start of spring on March 20, the sun once again beams with real warmth. For many of us, that means enthusiastically throwing ourselves across patches of sunlight. That, in turn, means more time and tissue exposed to the single largest cause of skin injury and cancer: ultraviolet radiation. We are resourceful sun seekers. Like a tree capable of lacing through sewer grates or penetrating cement, people find ways toward the sun. Suburban students may hang out in friends’ backyards, but the more popular equivalent is to find a sunny brownstone or other stoop to perch on for the afternoon. Despite a flourishing market in sunscreens and sunprotective clothing, millions of children continue to overuse the rays that in small doses benefit health, but in larger doses can damage it. This is true not just when the summer sun shines. For some who frequent tanning salons or own tanning beds, sun worship is a year-round activity. Even dermatologists, who bolster their paychecks with fallout from UV abuse, express great frustration with their seeming inability to curb tanning behavior. This habit is most common among adolescents and young adults, who are most at risk for the side effects of these life-giving rays. There is a widespread belief that people enhance their appearance by tanning. This notion has stimulated the bulge of young patrons to the indoor tanning industry, who frequent these facilities as often as 20 times per month. Many think a tan protects a person by nullifying the damaging effects of UV radiation. In reality, a tan is proof of skin damage. Even brief exposure to ultravio-

let light can cause mutations in the DNA of skin cells. Accumulate enough of those mutations and cancer can result. Summarizing the mounting evidence that exposing skin to UV radiation has addictive potential, Dr. Robert L. Hornung of the University of Washington stated in an interview that frequent tanners showed signs of physiological and psychological dependence. Similar to smoking cigarettes and drinking heavily, which are “often practiced despite knowledge of their dangers,� attempts to curtail UV abuse through education about its dangers seem to fall on deaf ears. As with alcohol, not everyone who is exposed develops an unhealthy dependence on the sun, but there are enough UV abusers—research by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that around 15.6 percent of high school students surveyed have used an indoor tanning device—to show that addiction is driving this behavior. Although many consider a tanned look their strongest motivation for sunbathing and using tanning beds, a recent report in The Skin Cancer Foundation Journal revealed that tanners also cite “mood enhancement, relaxation and socialization� as their reasons. Schools should join hands with dermatologists in solidarity to favor strict regulation of tanning salons, particularly banning patronage by minors. A simple step forward is to begin teaching children at a very early age to always use sunscreen and to avoid excessive sun exposure even when they use it, since even the best sunscreens cannot fully prevent sun damage. Just as child-restraint laws foster generations of adults who routinely use seat belts, wise sun habits in early childhood could endure for a lifetime — and a longer life.

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SPORTS

10

APRIL 27, 2012

Supplements for supple men (and women)

1 Pre-workout supplements are typically concoctions of various vitamins and minerals that together help fuel your workout and maximize your efficiency. They often come in powdered form and are consumed dissolved in water. They should be taken on an empty stomach, ideally 1-2 hours following your last meal.

S U P 2 P Omega 3 is not only great for L cognitive function and cardiovascular health but it helps with E the rebuilding of cells such that M muscles grow faster. The body E does not make this acid on its own so taking a capsulated form N of it may be effective in your T endeavor to bulk up. S JESSE

ZHOU

O PR

3 Creatine helps the body use and store energy. It is naturally found in meat but few people consume enough meat for it to be present at optimal levels within the body. So, unless you down rib-eye, serloin and filet mignon on a daily basis, taking the supplement helps you push through an additional repetition or two during your workout session.

T

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Whey Protein is arguably the most popular choice for a muscle building åessential amino acids after a tough workout. Also, when blended with chocolate milk and a banana, its powdery blandness is transformed into chocolatey deliciousness.

5

Caffeine works on both a psychological and physiological level. Both mental focus and workout intensity are achieved through this alkaloid stimulant. In addition, for those of us who lack motivation, it can give us the crucial nudge to get our butts to the gym. Don’t forget the power of natural, unprocessed foods. While flashy workout pills and powders are plastered with big statistics and promises, nothing beats a hearty, complete meal. Fill your dinner plate with natural proteins such as chicken breast, fish, and nuts. Exercise burns amino acids rapidly so, go ahead, steal some back from the chickens!

6

Proper recovery after a strenuous workout requires the consumption of a wide range of vitamins and minerals. While it is possible to attain these from a well-balanced diet of fruits, veggies, lean meats and beans, an average teenager’s diet is not often so ideal. Popping a pill in the morning can be extremely beneficial in the long term.

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COMPILED BY SINDHU GNANASAMBANDAN

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SUNWOO JEONG

COURTESY OF YEARBOOK

Soaring like a birdie: Badminton team flies out of obscurity SUNWOO JEONG sports editor

ALL PHOTOS BY SUNWOO JEONG

BIRDIES OF FURY | Seniors Ammar Amir, Yoojin Choi and Samuel Lee and junior Ranice Luo play hard, aiming to uphold the team’s newfound dominance.

6

For the past five years, the badminton team has been switching back and forth between the upper De Anza Division and lower El Camino Division, able to win easily in the lower league but unable to maintain its place when brought to the upper division. Due to this, other teams felt unthreatened by the team’s presence in the De Anza Division this year. However, with a new coach and a rekindled passion, the team has surpassed all expectations and currently sits atop the league, undefeated with seven wins. The team has taken down powerhouses that used to brush off the team with ease such as Saratoga, Monta Vista and Lynbrook, and its chances for league champion seem highly within grasp. Having had different coaches almost every year, the varsity team was forced to adapt to many different styles of coaching. The players were never really able to build a lasting relationship with their coaches, and many veteran players on the team had to create selfmade success. The team’s achievements this year stem from even before the season, as rigorous conditioning involving footwork, hitting technique and form was stressed to prepare for the season. Many players on the team also take either private or group lessons outside of the school team, trying to improve on a daily basis. The team also has a bigger senior class this year, giving the team a more experienced set of players that is able to mentor younger teammates. Senior Sam Lee said, “The team is more centralized this year as more of a unit. We have a lot more people who are experienced and know how to lead

the team.” Alongside talented leaders and nationally ranked players such as senior Daniel Chow and junior Chetan Potu, the team has been able to find its stride and chemistry, leading to success in the upper division. Even though the team has finally been able to ascend to the top of the league this year, varsity coach Ung Tang hopes to not only win this year but to maintain a strong badminton program even after the seniors from this year leave. “Because of how the high school sports program works, it is not just about having strong players but also about creating a strong foundation and program that anyone can follow. I try my best to motivate the team to compete hard and to create a flame in each of them so that in both victory and loss, the players can walk away feeling successful,” Tang said. Even though a large portion of the team will be graduating this year, the upperclassmen have made efforts to create a family environment in which their relationships do not stop within the team but also stem out into school and outside of school as well. With the high respect that they already have from the younger players, the seniors hope to pass on a message of both dedicated team and individual work ethics. Senior Menglin Ruan said, “The amount that you receive is the amount that you exert. Just because no one else is motivated, it does not mean that you have to be unmotivated as well. Don’t be afraid to ... work hard on your own.” With five games left in the season, the badminton team hopes to continue its winning streak while laying a foundation that will ensure the team’s success in the future with the seniors leading the charge.


APRIL 27, 2012

THE PROSPECTOR

11

Go Figure: A balancing act of skating, schooling and socializing HONG SUH lifestyles assistant

For senior figure skater Elizabeth Abramzon, regularly giving up three- or four-hour portions of her day is a mundane aspect of her life. A select portion of the school’s students sacrifices large chunks of its time in a similar manner, but for competitions and prestige. Abramzon stands out in stark contrast; she practices passionately only for the sake of enjoyment. Abramzon has been skating for seven years with a demanding regimen of seven four-hour sessions a week in middle school and four three-hour sessions a week after entering high school. Her schedule resembles that of a highly competitive athlete but her words tell another story. In an environment of hyper-competition where many continue with extracurriculars for the ulterior motive of college, Abramzon maintains a more easygoing attitude toward her genuine interest. Abramzon said, “I don’t really compete that much but it’s more something where you can go out and enjoy yourself and get your mind off of school and stress... It’s really enjoyable.” Even when she does compete, Abramzon focuses not on the medal or the trophy, but on the sheer enjoyment of being in the ice rink. In competitions, Abramzon said, “You present what you’ve been working on for the whole year. You go out and there are parents and friends cheering for you... It’s a fun time to show what you’ve been working on all this time.” Despite her massive sacrifice of time for ice skating, Abramzon tries to keep it from taking over her life. One benefit of Abramzon’s struggle for balance in ice skating and everything else is her tendency to be organized. “I have to prioritize so obviously school comes first, but I schedule things on a planner so I can balance and find time to do homework and go to practice afterward,” said Abramzon. A significant motivational experience for Abramzon that fed her passion for skating was her encounter with Disney on Ice, a spectacular ice skating show with Disney characters. Abramzon was able to go backstage and interact with the Disney skaters. “It was a cool experience to speak to people who were

performing professionals,” said Abramzon. “It was more motivational for me because after watching the show, I was like, ‘Holy moly,’... after talking to them, I realized how much work they put into it and it made me realize that if I was able to put more time into it and put more creativity into my routine, it would bring me a step closer to being as good as them.” Though Abramzon is determined to continue with her sport, there are some aspects of ice skating that Abramzon finds to be frustrating. Abramzon said, “Because [with ice skating] you never know, because the ice is different every day, it can be really frustrating when you keep falling.” However, Abramzon has been able to turn her frustration into a positive through continuous practice. “It’s definitely a learning experience. If you fall, get up and keep going — it’s definitely given me that kind of motivation,” said Abramzon. All sports players know that sports affect not only muscles and motor skills, but also mental toughness that is useful in every aspect of life. In the same way, Abramzon turns her falls into an opportunity to rise higher than before. “There are hard times, but every time I think about ice skating and how every time I fall, I’m able to get up and continue. It’s a sport that has taught me life lessons and I am thankful for that,” said Abramzon.


FLIP SIDE MADHURI SATHISH flipside assistant

O

ver the course of the past nine years, junior Victoria Gee has been launched into a pond, cleaned stables and ridden a horse named Buck Naked. But Gee is not only a horseback rider; she has also been a horse trainer for approximately four years. The patience and confidence she has gained from working with others’ horses has helped her talk to and work with more people in her day-to-day life as well as form a close partnership with her own horse, Razzmatazz. As a horse trainer, Gee works for five hours a day, seven days a week. However, despite the fact that she is paid for what she does, she does not feel that it is a typical job, particularly because she believes that riding and training are overlapping activities. “Well, riding is the work ... the only difference [between riding and training] is this thing we call ‘trainerisms,’ where you have the focus on … and you have to have the horse behaving at all times, [whereas] when I’m riding my

Horsepower: no foaling around

own horse … we decide what we’re going to do and if we’re going to jump or if we’re just going to play around to music,” Gee said. Gee’s life as an equestrian entails more than work, though; she has participated in horse shows as both a rider and trainer. In the past, Gee

12

APRIL 27, 2012

has won first place prizes five times and as a result, attended the statewide Junior Championships, where she earned second place overall. However, she finds that there is more to shows than such achievements. Said Gee, “I was riding this horse ... we were going

into the ring, and these sprinklers went off and you know how the water shoots out? It totally shot him in the butt and he hates water and he just took off ... I stayed on, but I got disqualified. And it’s always those disasters that have memories; like it’s not even the first place you win, it’s all those fun times

that you have. It’s not really about winning.” After being persuaded by her sister to begin riding at the age of six, Gee rode for several years before other horse owners began to see her as a prospective horse trainer. Working with these owners, in addition to riding, has given

her more patience and confidence. “[The] hardest part I think is patience, because you need patience all the time … like with working with horses and working with people ... and also, just having the confidence to do other things. I was always really shy until I did horseback riding. And after horseback riding, you have the confidence to talk to anyone. If you can ride a 2,000-pound horse and jump him four feet, then it’s kind of easy to talk to someone, so I’m pretty confident in that respect now,” Gee said. Gee finds that for her, horseback riding and horse training truly set themselves apart from other sports in the unique bond that riders form with horses, explaining that what she does is worth the time and effort despite the many challenges she faces. “Horseback riding [is] not just a sport ... it’s like a partnership with you and the horse … you kind of have to put up with each other and everything but once you have those perfect moments … it’s like everything comes together.”

Nothing Like (How I Met Your) Mother’s Touch SEONG HWAN YOON flipside assistant

I

t is often said that people take television shows for granted. I mean, I don’t blame them. There are many shows out there today that are, quite frankly, pointless and disturbing. However, once in a while, a show comes along that not only makes millions of audiences roll on the floor in laughter (enraptures the audience with its hilarity), but also captivates their hearts, often forcing them to grab for the nearest tissue box. I started watching the hit CBS comedy series, “How I Met Your Mother,” about four years ago, and I remember

from the very first episode that I was entranced by both the humor and the intricate storyline. I vividly recall spending about three days in my bed with my laptop and a bottle of coke, catching up on all four seasons of the show. It is from this show, or more specifically from Barney Stinson, a psychotic yet lovable character, that I first learned how to “suit up” and successfully get a date. Not only that, but Stinson is full of theories that surpass the knowledge of your average science class and open your mind’s eye to more important matters such as the “Lemon Law,” the “Mermaid Theory” and, my personal favorite, the “Hot Crazy Scale,” which basically states that girls are al-

lowed to be crazy as long as they are attractive. By now, you must think this is a horrible, lascivious show... “Challenge accepted,” by the end of this column, I will prove to you that “How I Met Your Mother” is perhaps the most educational television show. Unlike regular sitcoms, “How I Met Your Mother” is at the intersection of humor and storytelling that make it one of the most enjoyable shows to watch. Every episode has its own story within the overall plot of a father telling his children how he met their mother. Episodes deal with almost all the important themes you learn about in literature class: courage, love and friendship. Nevertheless, my favorite part

about he show is that “How I Met Your Mother” isn’t always about the plot, but rather the characters that create it by weaving through the intricate web of everyday life. However, if I had to pick the one reason why I like the show so much, it would be because of the show’s close relevance to the audience’s personal experiences. I stumbled u p o n an episode called “The Platinum Rule” that describes the steps in dating someone you see everyday and how it will ultimately fail in the end, causing anger and resentment, not to mention awkwardness, be-

realize that “coexisting” and letting go of their anger is the

tween the former couple. Coincidentally, I watched that particular episode after my own breakup and found myself agreeing to and appreciating the meaning behind the episode. Though in the end, characters

best solution after such breakups, it is these little things that truly stay with you even after the television goes black.

JASON CHEN

APRIL IN PHOTOS

JASON CHEN

COURTESY OF ELLEN JACOBS

ERIC JANG

KEVIN CHU

LIP DUB| Dusty the Pioneer and passionate students rush to the bleachers to pose for the conclusion of the lip dub. VANCOUVER TOUR| Capella sings Ave Maria with Chor Leoni, Canada’s premiere classical male choir, after watching their show. FIRST ROBOTICS COMPETITION SILICON VALLEY REGIONAL| The team from Cupertino High School competes for a spot at the National Championship in front of cheering crowds. DINING FOR DOLLARS| Matthew R. Kuhl, Itamar Reuven, and Jose A. Uribe support Cupertino High School Baseball by participating in a fundraiser at Armadillo Willy’s.


The Prospector (April 27 2012)