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HHS Going Green

By Rachael Jackson Editor-In-Chief

Most people who do not live in Florida, or have never visited during the fall, call our state the “Sunshine State.” But even Florida needs an efficient way to store sunlight when it is hit with bad storms. Hurricane Betsy, for example, killed seventy five people and destroyed 6.5 billion dollars worth of property and homes when it landed in 1965. It was the third most costly hurricane in the United States. Twenty years later in 1985, Hurricane Elena caused nearly one million people to evacuate their homes, the largest peace-time evacuation in U.S. history. It is sometimes hard to think of Florida as anything but a dreary wetland when rain is constantly pouring during storm season. In 2009, the University of Central Florida came out with a grant for ninety

Take a peek at what’s inside this edition:

Hernando High School News

Volume 11 Issue 2 December 2011

district money they would be spending. Reducing bills is one bonus of having the solar panels, because what really matters to the staff of Hernando High is the educational value the panels contain. “I think the most important aspect [for the addition] is for science and math experiments and for the hands on lessons that can be taught,” Gaustad said. Taking heat measurements during different seasons and energy gauges only scrapes the surface of the interactive experiments students will be able to perform with The stand for the solar panels, eighteen in all, right behind the cafeteria almost the panels when they start to finished being constructed. operate. thousand dollars for a few are building the frames to of what the solar panels will “I think the solar panels are schools to spend on so- hold the panels up so they do for the school. a great thing for the school Tentatively, the solar pan- to have. They should be fun lar panels. The grant also can start collecting the suncomes through SunSmart, a light and turn it into energy. els will be up and running to work with when they are corporation that builds and The energy the panels will by November. When they running,” Senior Amanda distributes panels. be collecting will be mainly are constructed, however, Faunce said. “I’ve waited two long used as a backup for the caf- they will be plugged directThe solar panels have been years for these panels, and eteria, a registered shelter in ly into the main electricity branded across the campus we were one of the lucky Hernando County, in case it supply. Although only a tiny as a great opportunity and few who were chosen for is being used when a hur- fraction of the power stored an open doorway to new and the grant,” Assistant Princi- ricane or violent storm hits will be used, it will some- improved advancements pal Mr. Brent Gaustad said. and knocks out all power what reduce the tremendous Hernando High School is Situated behind the caf- and the backup generator cost of running all the lights able to attain and use in the and appliances in the over- future, and has also become eteria, local businesses con- runs out of fuel. tracted through SunSmart But that is not the extent sized kitchen, saving the a source of pride.

Fluoridation in Water in Florida What Are We Really Eating? Creativity of HHS Swim Team Recap

Is Facebook Affecting Grades? Invisibility Cloak, is it Real? Big Cat Rescue Accusations Harry Potter


December 2011

Magnets Can Cause Invisibility?

News

position. The solution to this is simple: the outside layer of the superconductor needs to be coated with By Tyler McBee magnetic particles so that Associate/Comics and Games Editor Invisibility is naturally rial that can create an elec- the outside field would flow a sneaky science, and it is trical flow to counteract the around the object and not still impossible to cloak a magnetic field when cooled just repel from it, creating a person from sight (as that close to absolute zero de- magnetic “black hole”. This would require either a large grees Kelvin (or -459.67 would allow a person with source of energy that can degrees Fahrenheit). If this a pace maker to get an MRI bend light around an object, temperature were higher without the pace maker being negatively or by making affected by the the person have MRI’s magnet or the same refracthe image from tive index of air the MRI from so that the body being affected by would not absorb the metal in the or reflect light, pacemaker. causing the light The uses for to pass straight this discovery through said perare endless, the son). Both of only thing inhibthese ideas are iting the use of flawed in that the magnetic inif light is bent visibility cloak is around a person the fact that the then none would A magnetic field pulls metals, but the superconductor superconducting reach their eyes, nullifies that pull. Courtesy of Google Images material needs to so they would not be so close to absosee anything, and lute zero, which is extremely if the light passes through this innovation would allow the person then the light people to keep the magnetic cold; too cold for the human would not be caught inside field of an object from exit- body to handle. Advances the person’s eyes and a sig- ing the superconductor and are being made in this field, nal would not be sent to the could be used on military though, so the temperature brain, also inhibiting them submarines to allow them to that a superconductor can navigate minefields without exist is getting higher and from seeing anything. higher, so in a few years Scientists may not have causing them to explode. While the superconductor people with pace makers been able to unlock the secret of invisibility, but would keep the magnetic will be able to have an MRI they have gotten closer to field from being detected or even cook with a micromaking a sort of invisibil- from the outside, it would wave and people with metal ity cloak for magnets. The also push any other mag- in their bodies will not be in cloak is made by using a netic field on the outside pain when walking close to “superconductor,” a mate- away, thus giving away the anything magnetic.

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Steps

To C

By H o Assoc pe Stout iate/N ews/C o-E

ollege nterta

inmen

t Edit

or

It’s that time of year; time to to your choice colleges so start stressing about college. you can get a better idea of Being a senior, I have been which one you really want going through the entire to go to. In the fall, more college application process. scholarships become availReally, the process started in able if you are a senior. You the beginning of my junior can apply to any that you year. I had to take either the qualify for, as early as posSAT or the ACT (it’s good to sible, so that you have a betsign up in the spring of your ter chance of being selected. The scholjunior arship year so if process you don’t continues do well, until the you can end of the always year, beretake it cause new in the beones are ginning always of your popping senior As students enter high school, they up around year). Af- begin the long journey to graduaevery corter taking tion. ner. the SAT Volunor ACT, you can get an idea of where teering is another essenyou’d like to be in regards tial part of this process for to the Bright Futures Schol- Bright Futures. Most peoarship, if you are choosing ple need a minimum of 50 to stay within the state of hours to get the 50% bright Florida. Then comes the futures. You need 75 for time to choose the colleges 75% and 100 for 100%. A you’d like to apply for. Pick good thing to do would be a few; just in case you don’t to start volunteering in your get in to your first choice. freshman/sophomore years, Over the summer, start ap- because by the time you hit plying for any scholarships your junior year; your .... you can, and schedule visits Continued on p. 3


December 2011

College Steps (cont. from p. 2) schedule becomes increasingly full, leaving no room for volunteering hours. Usually, people get jobs, have increased amounts of homework, and start taking DE classes, so getting the volunteering out of the way as soon as possible is really the best way to go. FAFSA and Bright Futures are the state federal aid programs for Florida, which you will want to apply for coming December/January of your senior year. Before you can do that, though, college admission applications are essential to have turned in. Usually the application fee is around $30 per application, and they are pretty extensive, so allow plenty of time to complete them. You might want to see your guidance counselor here at HHS to get your class rank and class percentile, as well as your weighted and un-weighted GPA. Before you send in your applications (usually electronically through the college’s website) you need to pick up a transcript form in the front office, fill it out, and turn it in at least 2-3 days before you send your application in. This allows time for the transcript to be sent out and received by your college, especially if it is out of state.

If you are a Duel Enrollment student, you’ll have to send over a PHCC transcript as well. These are available in the main offices on any campus, and whoever is at the front desk will take them for you. If you are looking to graduate from PHCC by the time you graduate, or are 1 semester away from graduation from college when you graduate high school, you might want to do a credit check with the guidance counselor at PHCC. For me personally, Vikki Devito was very helpful. Have whoever the counselor is print out your classes and tell you exactly which ones you still need to complete. Then, depending on your case, you need to pick up a graduation form (also in office lobby or available from your guidance counselor at PHCC) and fill it out by the date posted on www.phcc.edu under the academic schedule tab. Once you send out your applications and apply for scholarships, the worst part is over; now you just have to monitor your scholarships and applications and make minor decisions like whether or not to live on campus at your school of choice. Best of luck!

News

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was malnourished and its Big Cat Rescue has been teeth were rotting and had around for quite a while and to be pulled, but in a video is a very trusted organizaBaskin tells the public how tion for saving abused and Shere Kan was raised in a By Tyler McBee neglected large felines. The loving and nurturing home organization is so trusted in Associate/Comics and where he was bottle fed and fact that they receive milwas cared for very well. One Games Editor lions of dollars every year was a “…Private collector of these stories must be a lie, in donations and grants so who found a way to get the and given that Baskin hasn’t that they may care for the public to pay for her collec- put off the honest vibe, the animals, maintain their fasecond story seems more tion…” cilities, and continue their Baskin is not only lying likely. operations. What if, though, If one thought that BCR this organization couldn’t look was not as trustany worse, they worthy as the peowould be wrong. ple thought? How The USDA could such a chari(United States table organization Department of be considered deviAgriculture) ous? cited the orgaWell, for starters, nization in SepBCR has been actember of last cused of breeding year and March and bartering these this year for the large animals and quality of their giving them stories holding pens. to “tug on peoples’ The containment heart strings” in orareas had limbs der to boost their and other debris Exotic cats like this tiger are being bred and traded standing. However,by Big Cat “Rescue”. that the cats could breeding animals you easily climb on claimed you saved is nothand use to jump the fences, about the way she acquires ing more than a lie, and, acthe cats, but also about the and this also would have cording to Channel 10 News way they are raised. What’s allowed unauthorized perthe manager of BCR, Carol worse is that she cannot even sonnel to enter the pens. Baskin, bred and traded the keep a consistent story and These issues could cause inmajority of the cats in her is caught in her own lies. A juries or deaths to both the “sanctuary” but she claims primary example of Baskin people in the park as well that the only way to end the being caught up in her own as the animals. Things like neglect and abuse of these lies is when she tells about that should not be allowed cats is to stop the trading how a young tiger by the to continue, but they do beand breeding; sounds a bit well known name of Shere cause of the soft spot people hypocritical. A volunteer at Kan is raised in the facil- have for what they think are the BCR named Deborah ity. On the BCR webpage injured and abused animals. Sandlin said that Baskin Baskin states that the tiger

Big Cat Rescue


December 2011

Opinion

tal to the body and can be found in just about everything. Things as common as By Alaina Avirett bread include high fructose Reporter corn syrup in the ingredient list. Although more harmful Soda, pop, refresco, whatever people call it, it’s than HFCS, aspartame has downright good. The way made its way into (where the it fizzes in the mouth, the bulk of it goes) diet soda.

Sweet Poison

Diet soda, a main item containing aspartame : Google Images

sweet taste; heck, even the commercials endorse coolness while drinking it. Some of us pretty much inhale it, as Americans spend $12 billion dollars on it a year, downing an average of 2 cans per day. Two a day? Calculate that and it rounds out to about 730 a year. That’s a hefty dose of aspartame, phosphoric acid, ester gum, and sodium benzoate. Unless you’re a scientist, those words probably aren’t in your vocabulary. I mean, come on, aspartame? A chemical mixture that’s more easily called, FAKE SUGAR! Things such as this, Splenda, Sweet n’ low and high fructose corn syrup is all artificial and detrimen-

Aspartame was actually an accidental creation. A scientist was testing an anti-ulcer drug when he realized he had created a breakthrough solution; a crystal substance about 200 times sweeter than table sugar, according to www.sciencebasedmedicine.org. It was then lightly tested, certified and deemed as a sugar substitute. Cheaper than real sugar, the substitute was added in over 5000 food items. Mostly, those that state they are “sugar free” or contain “zero calories” is because it is both sugarless and without calories. Sounds like the perfect discovery, right? What the FDA didn’t want

consumers to know is what it actually does to the body. Aspartame, like other falsies, is not natural, is created in a lab, and does terrible things to the human body. It converts to formaldehyde once inside, ruining one’s metabolism,increasing weight gain, and, in some cases, causing anxiety attacks, according to snopes. com. It has even been known to cause more serious issues such as birth defects, brain tumors, and, from more recent studies, has been linked to death. Yes, death. But why haven’t we heard anything about this? Well, there are two main reasons. The first being lack of awareness. Aspartame-caused diseases are not reported like plane crashes, and the FDA tries to keep the limelight off of related stories as much as possible. Secondly, in a nutshell, money; millions of dollars are saved by adding cheap sugars to items, no matter the sacrifice, according to shakefit.com. Feeling duped yet? Not saying a soda once in a while isn’t okay, but just think about the amount of false sugars in those 730 sodas; that amount will really add up! Most may not believe this, but it is indeed true. Aspartame is nothing to joke about.

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in one banana. Potassium is an intracellular, positively charged ion By David Dudley which when combined with Double-Truck Editor sodium acts like a battery. Suddenly with the potassiOften times the typical um compound inside, a cell teenager can neglect or even can communicate and funcflat out forget about essential tion with electric impulses vitamins and minerals. The which are responsible for only nutrition that seems to muscle contraction and be taught to teenagers is di- heart and brain health. rectly connected to marketIf someone lacks potassiing: calories and fat. This um symptoms such as nerve can be fine for the normal and muscle dysfunction, teenager who doesn’t need confusion, vomiting, and as much fuel and vitamins. heart rhythm disturbances Unlike the typical teenag- can occur. A banana a day er an athlete, in order to in- can keep the doctor away. crease, or rather maximize, Remember this and stay recovery rates after a work- healthy my friends. out, potassium is needed. Potassium will help regulate heart function, reduce blood pressure, help maximize the absorption of protein, and even create muscle fuel out of glucose. Potassium is an intracellular, positively charged ion which, when entering a cell or muscle fiber, acts like a battery. Suddenly, with the potassium compound inside, a cell can communicate and function with an electrical impulse, which is responsible for muscle contraction and heart and brain health. Some foods that are high in potassium are actually grown right here in Florida, such as bananas and orange juice. Orange juice has alA banana, a key source of most double the amount of potassium: Google Images potassium which would be

Potassium


opinion Slip a Disk

December 2011

Milk

account for 51% of all osteoporosis cases, according By David Dudley to the international osteopoDouble Truck Editor rosis foundation, despite all If I were to go right to the this milk consumption? point of this article, I would The reasoning behind it all simply say that if you want is pasteurized milk which is to drink milk for strong basically everything in the bones, drink RAW milk or super market’s supply, is nothing at all. actually acidic. Raw milk is

A carton of milk, not all as it seems: Google Images

I’m no natural health fanatic, but what information I’ve stumbled across contradicts everything milk commercials try to get across. North America and Europe have the highest rate of osteoporosis in the world. Yet at the same time the United States and Europe pride themselves in being some of the most modern as well. With modernization comes cows and it turns out we drink the most dairy of any country in the world. If “Got Milk” is suppose to make bones stronger then why does the US and Europe

a base and when you drink pasteurized milk your body goes through acidation. Acidation basically means the body is not in its proper PH level and must use alkaline from the skeleton in order to restore proper PH levels, thus negating the calcium effects. I guess for this instance, the all natural way is the correct way. And for the young women and men hoping to fortify their bones, ignore the “Got Milk” ads. A great idea is to try to buy milk from the farm. This is the key to a clean cup of milk.

By David Dudley Double Truck Editor

One of the worst and most frequent injuries in high resistance sports such as weight lifting is a slipped disc. Slipped discs are basically a condition where the disc that helps absorbs resistance in the spine ends up breaking away. The disc’s gel like substance that is a major reason for the disc’s efficiency in absorbing resistance, escapes through the rupture or break. This causes immediate pressure on the surrounding area. The reason this is so bad is there is nothing but nerve tissue there. The spine is right along with the main roots of the body’s nervous system. So

Master of Words

By Rachael Jackson Editor-In-Chief Almost all have heard of him one way or another by now; whether by his YouTube videos, their friends, or even television on Comedy Central or Netflix. Bo Burnham has climbed his way to fame using his humor and flippant tongue to ensnare people with laughter and cunning, and at age 18 he became the youngest person to record a Comedy Central

An x-ray showing a slipped disk Google Images

special. Burnham started out playing the piano and the guitar in his room, singing along with lyrics he invented and posting the recorded videos online in 2006. Now, little more than four years later, he is becoming one of the most recognized people in America. Though most songs do not appeal to the older generation, particularly the one with children, his vulgar songs are laced with sarcasm and subtle entendres that makes you wonder what he’s really talking about. His most popular songs include “I’m Bo Yo,”

Pg. 5 any pressure being forced along that system will cause immense pain around the area and even anywhere below. This is followed by a weakening numbness of ligaments and organs around or below the slipped disc. In order to treat a sliped disc injury, depending on the severity of the pain and numbness a person may either end up right in the emergency room or in minor cases, prescribed low activity for several weeks. In order to prevent slipped discs it is important that in any sport, the athlete stretches and warms up. While performing always, always, always practice good form. There’s no way you’ll get better with a bad back. Try as hard as possible to avoid this. A ruined back could possibly cease any activity. “Oh Bo,” “New Math,” and “Words, Words, Words.” Burnham has his own website, depicting him eating the stuffing of a teddy bear sitting on the floor, with an “About Me,” photos, tour schedules, merchandise, and a blog he writes in when he gets some down time. Bo Burnham has played in four movies and was recently cast in the movie “Hall Pass” as the bartender. He will surely be featured in more as they arrive. Burnham is a fast rising star that is getting more recognized with time.


Hernando Hig

by: J M

by: Cierra Adkison

Tony Luna

By Jamie Moran


gh’s Creativity

Jamie Moran

Background by: Allison Coelho

By: Parker Reasor


December 2011

Facebook Obsession?

Features

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By Katherine Adams Entertainment Editor

Perhaps the most over mentioned topic is that of Facebook – it even makes its appearance in high school newspapers. It is like a ninja, stealthily sneaking into people’s conversations, lives, and even in the films. It’s printed on bags of potato chips and has posters. Facebook is everywhere, inescapable even, a permanent part of our daily lives, and it shows no sign of falling from people’s radars. Created in 2004, by 2007 Facebook was reported to have more than 21 million registered members generating 1.6 billion page views each day. According to mashable. com, studies show that a normal teenager spends an estimate of thirty-one hours a week online. That equates to about four and a half hours every day. Teenagers generally frequent sites such as Youtube and social networking sites. 96% of students are owners of Facebook accounts. Social media can create an optimistic impact on students’ sense of self within a community. It gives teens a boost of confidence to feel well-liked by their peers. However, negative effects abound. Students who hit the books while simultane-

Today it seems everybody is using Facebook. Image courtesy of Google Images.

ously using Facebook discover multitasking leads to their twenty percent lower grades than their more focused peers. Facebook has proven harmful to one’s GPA. Students who are Facebookers generally have GPAs at least .5 points lower than people who have yet to be ensnared by the addictive drug that is Facebook. Anyone who has an active account on Facebook is willing to admit that while visiting the popular website, one is inclined to lose track of time until hours have gone by and gone down the drain. That is valuable time that could have been spent in studies completely wasted. According to mashable.com, Facebook users only study about one to five hours per week. If you use Facebook regularly, you know exactly how this site

can be addictive, always updating your status, checking on others, bragging about yourself, or just mingling with strangers. Facebook puts a variety of powerful options on your fingertips and you are hooked. Not only do grades suffer, but students might actually end up feeling more depressed or lonely. Almost half of students believe they are sadder than their friends on Facebook, and twentyfive percent of students have shown signs of severe depression in their status updates at one time or another.

ATTENTION STUDENTS:

Would you like to see something published in the school’s newspaper? Well here is your chance. Ms. Poggi (in room 28209), Rachael Jackson (Editor-in-Chief), Tyler Mcbee (Associate Editor), and Hope Stout (Associate Editor) are taking story ideas from you! The school newspaper is mad for you, so get involved and speak your mind about what you want to read.


FEatures Kill Me Oh So Cleanly December 2011

By Tyler McBee Associate Editor

Most people, when asked what fluoride is, respond by saying something similar to “it’s that stuff you use to clean your teeth”, or “it’s that mineral in our drinking water to prevent cavities.” These assumptions would be correct. Fluoride is a mineral that will prevent tooth decay and promote a healthy mouth, but the problem is that the fluoride in the water is not the naturally occurring fluoride. According to a documentary on naturalnews.tv called The Fluoride Deception by Mike Adams, the executive director of the consumer wellness center (consumerwellness.org for more information), what we are drinking in our water is actually a mixture of hexafluorosilicic acid and sodium silicofluoride, both are byproducts of the phosphate industry. Due to the phosphate ore having a great deal of fluoride contamination, the rock has to be mixed with sulfuric acid and the fluoride that comes off of the ore comes off as silicon tetrafluoride, which is a highly toxic gas. This gas used to be released into the air, but then wet scrubbers were installed in the smokestacks in order to catch the gas and contain it to prevent it from reach-

ing the environment. This helped save the surrounding area, but now what to do with the waste? The EPA declares the chemicals

example of how combinations of elements can be totally different from the different elements that create them look at salt, otherwise known as sodium chloride, which is a mixture of so-

toxic waste and they cannot be dumped into the oceans and lakes, so the companies slap a fluoride label on the containers and send them to water management plants to be dumped into the water as a sort of mass medication for the population. The chemicals do have fluoride in them, it’s true, but the combination of the other elements is harmful to the human body. To give an

dium and chlorine, both of which can kill humans if ingested separately, but together they make up something that humans need to survive. So just because fluoride is in these toxic wastes doesn’t mean that they would be good for humans, or anything, to ingest. Shocking surveys have been done on how fluoride affects the human body and

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the dosage that would normally be dumped into the water supply of an American city (2.47 milligrams per liter). The study showed that the village with the minimal amount of fluoride had 28% of its children score above average on IQ tests, but the high-fluoride village had a staggering 15% of its children develop mental handicaps. The main argument that many people will produce to support fluoride would be that doctors and dentists recommend fluoride for a healthy mouth. These people are not wrong. Fluoride would be helpful to people, but what they may not know is that the “fluoride” that we are getting is not really fluoride. Recently, Pinellas County voted to stop fluoridation for the county, thus joining with Pasco and the majority of Hernando county. There are others as well who have found the truth behind fluoride and decided to act. The only place in a study in China entitled Hernando County that has “Fluoride is an IQ Killer for fluoridated water is BrooksChildren”, being just one of ville; so all of the readers many done, proves this by that live in Brooksville and taking a long term experi- are drinking city water can ment on 512 children be- buy a reverse osmosis filtween the ages of eight and ter in order to purify their twelve from two villages water, or buy distilled or more than 50 miles apart. bottled water (Nestle brand One village was given a actually uses reverse osmovery minimal amount (0.36 sis in order to purify their milligrams per liter) of the water) and prevent all of the “fluoride” in their water pseudo-fluoride from enterwhile the other was given ing their bodies. these surveys have shown that the fluoride actually negatively affects the brain. According to a wnd.com article by Michael Carl, fluoride has been statistically linked to a drop in IQ and


entertainment Harry Potter Series Recap

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December 2011

By Stephen Skipper Opinion Editor

Harry Potter is a set of seven books about the trials of Harry Potter during his years at Hogwarts and his struggles against the evil Lord Volde-I mean He-Who-Must-Not-BeNamed, who was bested by an infant: Harry Potter. Now, Harry must deal with his education and enemies. However, Harry is not alone; joined by his best friends Ron Weasly and Hermione Granger. The magic began with Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (or Sorcerer’s Stone to us in America). The story tells of how eleven-year-old

Die-hard Harry Potter fans are anxiously awaiting the new website, Pottermore, for an interesting, unknown, magical world that can be enjoyed right alongside the seven New York’s Best Seller books, Harry Potter. Author J.K Rowling has constructed this new website with a small team of designers who are making more of her amazing ideas come to life. To date, there are approximately one million people with access to the new world through The Magical Quill challenge, which started July 31st, 2011. With the Beta version out, there has been a phenomenal amount of activity. Originally,

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets tells of Harry’s Harry Potter came to know his second year, but this year is mysterious different. history and Something the shocking is attackrevelation ing the of what he students, really is: a and if the wizard. The perpetrastory foltor is not lows him to caught, his first year Hogwarts at Hogwarts will close School of f o r e v e r. Wi t c h c r a f t The only and Wizardhint to ry, where a finding dark force of the culprit Harry’s past is hidden looms in Harry Potter is one of the most within plain sight. popular books series of all time. the secret

By: Rachael Jackson Editor-In-Chief

the plan was to let the Beta version run until the end of September, but Pottermore Insider says that with the soaring amount of activity, it is affecting the rate at which new users can be brought in. The new release date for new registries and accesses is not specified. Insider also warns that access may be granted quickly, but it all depends on the demand of the people. Feedback from the Beta has been great, and the creaors are excited to have it out for everyone. So for all people registered, or hoping to register, keep a look out for more updates, improvements, and advancements!

past of the trio’s friend Hagrid, gamekeeper of Hogwarts. Next is Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, one of my personal favorites. This tells the story of Harry’s third year, and the escape of supposed killer and maniac Sirius Black. As the year goes by, Harry begins to learn the truth of Black and his role in the death of Harry’s parents. The following year brought my all-time favorite installment; Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Harry’s fourth year is upon him, and there is a dark and sinister plot in action. Meanwhile, Harry must deal with a legendary tournament with each task more deadly than the last. This novel is my favorite. The plot is riveting, the humor is endless, and the dialogue consuming. If only one book can be read (I don’t know how) it should be this one. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the longest book in the series, is a good one. Harry begins his fifth year on a sour note, already being threatened with expulsion. Fifth year at Hogwarts means examinations, and everybody is stressed. How Harry can deal with these tests and most students calling him crazy is a mystery to all. This book begins a new era; only getting better from here. Sadly, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince doesn’t live

up to its predecessors. Now that everyone accepts that HeWho-Must-Not-Be-Named is back, everyone is wary. This book is probably my least favorite. The plot doesn’t have a good mixture to it, the story itself moves slowly, plus it includes one of the saddest moments in the history of the Harry Potter collection. The book itself is still good, just not as exciting and thrilling as the others. Finally, after 10 years of enjoying Harry’s story, the finale comes in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows, a truly amazing end to a truly amazing series. The book tells of the trio’s journey to find and destroy the source of You-Know-Who’s power and defeat him once and for all. This final installment is the definition of “finale”. It culminates everything that has happened over the series and finishes it in one final volume. The Harry Potter novels all add up to a truly enjoyable series, with laughs, love, and everything in between. It doesn’t matter if you are a fantasyreader; this series is one that will fit everyone’s desire in a book. This collection may have received some critical reviews from certain groups, but honestly, it doesn’t feature any true witchcraft, just magic. I feel sorry for any bibliophile who has not read this set of amazing books. Happy reading!

“a truly enjoyable series, with laughs, love, and everything in between.”


Sports Swim Team of Hernando December 2011

for 2011

By Hope Stout Associate Editor

The HHS swim team has made a giant splash this year, with a nearly unbeatable record, long lasting friendships, and tons of hard work that has really paid off. The team has swam greatly. All members have agreed that the swim team is almost like a family; though there are times of drama, at the end of the day, everyone has each others back to support and encourage them forward. All of the swim meets are progressive, meaning that they build upon each other as everyone races towards districts, which is fast approaching. Although the meets don’t determine if each individual person is

going to be moving on to district levels, they serve as an illustration of what is to come, and how prepared each particular swimmer is. Each swimmer’s dedication only grows stronger with each practice and swim meet, as they push themselves further and further each time. Improving speed and time are essential, as well as working on personal drive and motivation. “The hardest part of this season for me was not only finding unknown strengths, but also working my hardest to make them stronger,” senior Eli Ebbecke said. For Mika Rotunda, also a senior, the cold weather and water temperatures were her biggest challenge. “My personal challenge was my ability to swim when it’s

cold.” My body just can’t handle those cold temperatures!” Rotunda said. Her toughest meet was against Bishop, for this very reason. “The temperature in the pool had dropped a significant amount, and suddenly my arms and legs felt as though I had submerged myself into an arctic tub.” Despite a few obstacles to overcome, the swim team is a perfect place to build personal strength that helps all aspects of life. With each mile that a swimmer accomplishes, they build mental perseverance and physical drive, leaving a very strong sense of accomplishment for all participating in the intense workouts. Each swimmer enjoys a certain aspect of being on the swim team. For Rotunda, faith was the driving force behind this unstoppable team.

Mika Rotunda, senior swimmer for Hernando High School. Source unknown.

“I really appreciated the huge presence of God and faith on the team. Before every meet we all gather in prayer and are sure to give all glory to God.” Whether it is faith, teamwork, personal responsibility, or improving strength, the swim team is an inspiring experience to hear about. Rotunda has a word of advice for those looking to join: “I would advise you to come prepared to work hard, have fun, prove a lot to yourself, and to expect some serious tan lines.” Ebbecke also recommends the swim team to anyone. “Swimming not only works every muscle in your body and makes you feel refreshed, but it is something you will want to do for the rest of your life. It is a great way to get in shape, challenge yourself, and when gaining the experience I now have, it is easy to make great friends, Ebbecke said. “One of the greatest things about being on the swim team is that it doesn’t matter how strong you are, or how skinny, because everyone is welcome as long as you can be dedicated to the sport, and the team.” With memories, aspirations, dreams and hopes like these, the swimmers of the 2011 Season are bound to lead great lives and be great wondrous people.

Pg. 11

HHS’ Baskbetball Schedule By Taylor Spears Sports Editor

12/06 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Tavares (Tavares, FL) 12/09 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Dunnellon (Dunnellon, FL) 12/13 7:00 PM-9:00 PM Crystal River (Crystal River, FL) 12/15 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Central (Brooksville, FL) JV Game at 6:00 PM 01/17 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Dunnellon (Dunnellon, FL) 01/19 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Central (Brooksville, FL) JV at 6:00 PM 01/20 7:00 PM-9:00 PM Crystal River (Crystal River, FL) 01/24 7:30 PM-9:30 PM Eustis (Eustis, FL)Eustis H.S. 01/26 7:00 PM-9:00 PM Wesley Chapel (Wesley Chapel, FL) Wesley Chapel High School


Comics and Games Horoscopes SUDOKU Aries (3/21-4/19): When you are showered with compliments, accept them graciously. Taurus (4/20-5/20): You’ll finally get an idea of your workload - but don’t panic! Gemini (5/21-6/21): Major career choices are never easy to make at first, but that’s no excuse to make them! Cancer (6/22-7/22): Your usually strong intuition is even stronger today, so start listening to it. Leo (7/23-8/22): There will be a huge creative spark in your writing, be ready! Virgo (8/23-9/22): Take another look at your problems - they’re not as big as you thought!

Libra (9/23-10/22): Be confident about the fact you’re making progress even if you’re not sure. Scorpio (10/23-11/21): Use your imagination. Add flair to your every day actions and make people smile. Sagittarius (11/22-12/21): What’s your hurry? Events on the horizon aren’t going anywhere. Live in the moment. Capricorn (12/22-1/19): You can’t let yourself take anything too seriously. Don’t let people bug you. Aquarius (1/20-2/18): Don’t let the mystical charms of a cutie keep you in a fog. Keep it real. Pisces (2/19-3/20): Every once in a while, you have to put yourself first. Do what you want today.


The Purple and Gold Press_December_2011