the eye Singapore American High School
October 5, 2007 / vol. 27 no. 2
New campus likely with growth, but not at Woodlands’ expense by Akhilesh Pant
Four years ago a family applied about potential risks involved. An to Singapore American School by epidemic such as SARS or any other phone from the United States. Three cause for an exodus of expatriates hours later they received a phone call from Singapore would cause a major from the Admissions Office informing predicament for the school. Lost them that their daughter had been tuition payments would impair the accepted. Today, more than 500 school’s ability to pay off construction waitwwlisted families can only wish loans. The administration is facing for this moment. SAS is the largest single-campus pressure from the Singapore international school in the world government and the families of the with a current enrollment of 3,806 wait-listed students (173 of whom are students representing 53 nationalities. U.S. passport holders) to expand the According to Superintendent Dr. Brent school’s capacity. “[A second campus] would bring Mutsch, SAS is the primary choice for the majority of newly-arriving, about a dynamic that I believe not many have thought about,” Dr. Mutsch expatriate families. Frustration among newly arrived said. A project of such proportions will families is growing with the everenlarging wait list. This academic year not only prompt a reorganization of funds and opened with a services, but wait list of 527 Any questions regarding location will also splinter students. Past of the new campus, costs of the SAS expansions exhausted all construction or effects on tuition fees community. can’t be answered as the plans are With many extra space on more American the Woodlands premature at this time. employees campus. Superintendent Brent Mutsch on the way in Dr. Mutsch coming years, said that capacity would not be increased pressures from American companies by inflating class sizes, even if only have begun as well. “A number of American companies temporarily, to increase capacity and revenues. A ratio of one teacher to are looking to bring more than 600 22 students is the current acceptable Americans (including their families) into Singapore in the next few years,” standard. “Altering the ratio could negatively wrote Douglas H. Miller, Chairman impact perception of the school’s of AmCham Singapore in his July “Singapore American” newspaper. education quality,” Dr. Mutsch said. This will serve to intensify the Discussions of a possible second campus started during the pressures on the administration as last academic year. The Board of well as on the other two trust schools, Governors addressed parents just United World College and Tanglin before summer vacation regarding Trust, each with “a waitlist equal to, if a new campus. The board has since not larger than that of SAS,” according been in contact with the Singapore to Dr. Mutsch. Miller wrote that large backlogs Government, particularly with the Economic Development Board for admission to international schools will deter Americans from moving (EDB). Overall construction costs in to Singapore and possibly cause Singapore have risen 15 percent in U.S. companies to hesitate before the past year according to an August investing here. Dr. Mutsch said that though “Business Times” article. Because of this large increase in construction plans are in the early stages, current costs action on a new project can only talks within the administration are begin after a lengthy planning process. progressing in the direction of a new Existing SAS facilities represent an campus in as little time as possible. “Any questions regarding investment of $270 million, Chairman of the Board Garth Sheldon said in a location of the new campus, costs of construction or effects on tuition fees September address to parents. With considerable costs involved can’t be answered as the plans are in a new campus, Dr. Mutsch spoke premature at this time,” he said.
IF THE ADMISSIONS FLOODGATES WERE OPENED, classroom might look something like this one, a combinmation of Kent Knipmeyer and Jason Adkisson’s social studies classes for Eye. Photo by Megan Anderson.
Taipei American School drops underclassmen’s ‘interim’ program because of costs, lost class days
by Amanda Tsao This week, while freshmen at SAS whined about their last pick for interim semester sign-ups, freshmen at TAS could only hope they would one day be allowed to have the same opportunityu again. The TAS version of interim semester was created for freshmen and sophomores to have the same learning opportunities as the SAS counterpart. The program, CELP
MICA (P) 054/10/2006
(Curricular Experiential Learning Program), has been cancelled this year mainly due to the shortage of school days. “With students going to PreIASAS, IASAS and Cultural Convention, we went over the tipping point.” Principal Dr. Hartzell said in an interview with editor-inchief Terrie Lin of TAS’s high school newspaper, the “Blue and Gold.” “There were too many lost instructional days.” Another reason was the amount spent on the trips. “The trips crippled the business office.” Hartzell said, “The school is not a travel agency or bank.” Safety also played a part in the cancellation. In the same article, Superintendent Dr. Sharon Hennessy was quoted saying that she heard about students having to shake
scorpions out of their sleeping bags on a South Africa trip. She said that she had to ask herself, “Would I let my own kids go on a trip like that?” and decided that she “could not let trips continue the way they were.” Underclassmen responded by launching petitions to try and reverse the decision, but to no avail. The administration maintained that the cancellation was for the best. Dr. Hartzell responded to the discontent by proposing either teachers or students plan overseas trips during school breaks. Alternatively, students could sign up for established study abroad programs outside of the school. “Experiential learning trips are important, but they need not take place during school,” Hartzell said.
October 5, 2007
DEEP BREATHS: Counselor Dawn Betts coaches peer supporters in a meditation excercise. photo by Brian Riady.
Peeking into peer support: SAS hosts first convention IASAS delegates brainstorm solutions for teen problems
by Ravi Shanmungam and Lorenzo Holt Alcoholism, drug abuse and suicide are hardly topics that come up in light conversation, but a glance at the roster of the 2007 Peer Support Convention, which was held in the SAS library, showed little else. Over presentations and greasy food, peer support representatives from the IASAS schools met to discuss the problems they face in a marathon fourteen and a half hour session, which started at 7:30 AM. This year marked the inaugural
Peer Support Convention, with the different schools giving presentations on what they considered the most pressing problems faced. They suggested possible solutions and cited examples of kids they had helped. ISB suggested that schools assign a peer supporter to every new student, making it possible for personal communication between the two instead of the generic welcome mail that most new kids face. Senior Brian Riady said that peer support plays an especially vital role at international schools, because of the large annual turnover and number of incoming students. “It’s a great opportunity to get a whole new perspective on some topics that you probably would never have thought of,”
Peer Supporter Belal Hakim said. Hakim said he found the event, which identified drinking as the biggest problem at every school, very useful. Peer Supporters are trained to identify kids who have an alcohol problem. If they discover such an issue they will try to help teh student work it out by bringing in his counselor and scheduling regular conferences with him, according to Senior Brian Gamball, who has been in peer support for two years. The convention had two keynote speakers, Middle School resource teacher Alesha Morris and Primary School counselor Susan Taylor, who talked about addressing underlying issues instead of attempting to find superficial solutions. They said
that too often, they had witnessed had to stay especially long, as peer supporters trying to sort out a SAS held a peer support retreat for kid’s issue without delving deeper fifty kids before the conference, whereupon they were joined by the to find the root cause. Peer supporters had to conduct other schools. “We were exhausted by the a series of exercises, including one that demonstrated the power end of the day, so we’d like a two of “positive reinforcement.” A day convention next year,” Hakim delegate went up to the board and said. Despite the time constraints, attempted to complete an exercise, while other delegates applauded in Hakim and Gamball said the an attempt to speed him up. Then, convention had been useful in giving the exercise was repeated with them ideas to implement. Hakim another delegate, except that he plans to hold student forums to deal was booed, the theory being that he with stress and publicize random would be slower. Unfortunately, it acts of kindness by students, much backfired when the second delegate as the administration is publishing managed to guess the answer the names of students who turn in significantly faster. wallets they find to the office. Hakim said that his one regret Additional reporting by Amber Bang in the convention was that it was email@example.com too tiring. SAS peer supporters firstname.lastname@example.org
Motivational speaker says students need more freedom, creativity by Alex Lim
If you think high school students with learning disabilities were born that way, think again. At least that’s what prominent psychologist turned motivational speaker Dr. Mel Gill thinks. Dr. Gill was the keynote speaker at this year’s College and Career Day. He is recognized by the “Business Times” and the “Sentinel” as the world’s top Asian-American motivational speaker. “Students perceive learning as not being fun,” Dr. Gill said in a recent interview with The Eye. “I think it’s not a case of learning disabilities, but a case of teaching disabilities.” Dr. Gill said that most skills acquired in the classroom are not applicable to real life situations and that many teaching techniques used today could be detrimental to students’ creativity. English teacher Andrew Hallam said that teachers are more inclined to adopt the familiar teaching styles that they grew up with. “Teachers are encouraged by the academic system they grew up in and it works for them,” Hallam said. “They go straight from college to teaching in school, and they never
leave the academic environment they had learned in.” Dr. Gill said that his classroom would be “aflame with color” should he ever teach, and that as long as there was a contract between student and teacher, “students could do whatever they wanted to do while engaging in activities related to the subject matter.” Dr. Gill has no prior teaching experience. “Being self-reliant, self-sufficient and self-motivated are characteristics I would instill in class,” Dr. Gill said. Dr. Gill said that teachers at SAS seem to be more successful in incorporating these characteristics than the teachers at most public high schools in America. Social studies teacher Jason Adkison was mostly in agreement with Dr. Gill’s assessment. “I’m a big advocate of creativity, and there are times when a lecture isn’t good enough,” Adkison said. Adkison said the difficulty of the curriculum being taught often determines the level of creativity a teacher employs. “It’s hard to imagine teaching an AP class and allowing students to do whatever email@example.com they want.”
I think it is not a case of learning disabilities, but a case of teaching disabilities. Dr. Mell Gill
Motivational Speaker Dr. Mell Gill was the keynote speaker at the SAS Career Day assembly
October 5, 2007
Youtube debates: students respond positively to new format by DJ Hartman Students who ventured in the first floor of the cafeteria during lunch on Sep 3 found their seats replaced by a podium and projector. The student council’s YouTube debates was a new forum created by the executive council to present the candidates to the student body. The idea was first proposed to the council by Amanda Tsao, executive secretary who also emceed the event. “The debates were modeled after this summer’s YouTube debates for the Democrats,” Tsao said. “[Executive Council] thought it would be a good idea to get students more engaged in the election process if we gave them something similar to what went on with the Presidential candidates.” The Democratic Party installation on Jul 27, attracted more views in the 18-30 range than any other debate in cable news history, according to Nielsen Media Research. YouTube users answered the video hosting website’s call for questions for the candidates in the thousands. Modeling an existing political
process is aimed at increasing student involvement. “You get to know more about the candidates before you see them with their speech” said executive council sponsor, Will Norris. Norris said that the debates were an attempt to deemphasize the popularity factor in student council elections. “This is an effort to take away from the popularity to give a full view of the candidates themselves,” Norris said. Posters were limited this year as well as campaign giveaways (such as stickers, lollypops and badges). The debates are also addressing the growing number of students at SAS. “As we grow as a school we get more and more students, this gives them some equity to present themselves versus someone who might have been here for a very long time,” said Norris. The freshmen and junior debates, taking place in the cafeteria were met with numerous problems. The cafeteria was a very noisy venue; the candidates were barely audible above the noise of the cafeteria. Unlike the tribute
to Nat Bava last year when the cafeteria hushed down in respect, students didn’t give the same response to the debates. The PA system pierced the already noisy cafeteria multiple times during the debate. Videos questions went of without a hitch but were drowned out by poor acoustics and the students in the cafeteria. However some videos were interesting, such as a talking piece of naan, a typewriter typing out its query, and biting questions like, “why should I care about student council, much less vote for one of you?” Despite problems, students responded well to this new form of debate on the second day, when the venue was moved to the foyer. Candidates were candid and enthusiastic in their responses and were met with loud cheers of approval and cheering, especially to popular questions such as brining back the stereo to the cafeteria. Attendance was sacrificed for sound quality but all participants were much more audible at the second debate. Some unexpected questions were presented, breaking away from traditional remarks about prom and spirit activities.
Some candidates proved better at thinking on their feet and others stumbled on questions. Some were not well prepared, two candidates running against each other for secretary both listed “neat handwriting” as a qualification. All
candidates responded pleasantly and enthusiastically to questions even as unserious as “what would you bring with you to a deserted island?” firstname.lastname@example.org
Above: candidates running for sophomore treasurer take their turn to answer debate questions. Right: Executive Secretary Amanda Tsao introduces Freshman and Junior candidates over the din of lunching students
We got m@il: Teacher slams staff-editorial as unfair and innacurate To the Editor: I write as a fan of The Eye, believing this to be the best student newspaper I’ve read at any school. However the staff editorial in the recent (Sept 3, 2007) edition caused me dismay. I think it was a cheap shot at the administration, and it must be a particularly unpleasant job to work hard all day and then read a public attack on your ability and performance. I don’t think the editorial was kind, respectful, fair or responsible (4 of the 5 cornerstones which we attempt to build in the school). In terms of the 5th cornerstone, honesty, that is also open to dispute, as I don’t believe that your editorial honestly portrayed the content of the assembly. Like you, I did not enjoy the assembly, but I did think (unlike you) that it served a useful purpose. Could it have been run somewhat differently? Perhaps, but your editorial did not provide any constructive suggestions for future assembly structure / content, other than the statement that they “have to entertain”. Allow me to be more specific as to why this editorial saddened me. 1. The premise that “most teenagers will get bored listening to a discourse on the importance of responsibility”, thus your belief that the subject of responsibility should not be covered in an assembly. If not in an assembly at the very beginning of the school year, to a large percentage of students who are completely new to the culture of SAS, then where and when? You say that “he has other forums (to discuss) shared values and responsibilities.” Which forums? The Morning Show? The Daily Bulletin? 2. “Punishments should not be on a first assembly agenda.” There was little, IF ANY, discussion of punishments, rather, there was discussion of what behavior is expected. 3. Neihart and Mehrbach were “scarcely better” (than Norcott), “a failure”(editors note: the attempt at double-teaming, not Norcott, was termed “a failure.”) There was the following comment that seventeen year olds can “pull off stuff” that an “over 40” cannot. Charming. I find the comment rude, subjective, and the choice of words cutting and cruel. If you were on the receiving end of such a criticism, you would have every reason to be really upset. 4. “The administration lost the plot,” they exercised the “wrong tone”. “The speakers realize that they have to entertain their audience …”(editor’s note: the editorial suggested that speakers should entertain their audience) I couldn’t disagree more. The plot was appropriate, namely to inform the student body about the school’s values, eye-to-eye (not via a paper publication that may not be read). You have said that the tone focused on punishments. I believe you are in error here, as punishments were not the focus (perhaps not specifically mentioned at all). Why do you believe that an assembly’s purpose is to “entertain”? This is not a cinema on a Saturday night. It is nice if there is a little levity, but there is no obligation on the part of the speaker to entertain. Rather, there is a responsibility on the part of the audience to be respectful, and to listen. 5. “Respect is not an inherent right.” Bang goes one fifth of the school’s Cornerstone Values, then. You could not be more wrong. Each interaction in this school, and outside, should be built on respect. I would suggest that as Editor of this newspaper that you have a heavy responsibility to be furthering the cause of respectful interactions in the school. Your letter completely lacks respect, and you deny the inherent responsibility that we all have to be respectful of others. I think it is you who have lost the plot. I believe the paper’s credibility rests on the quality of its stories. In my opinion, your editorial has dented the paper’s positive reputation, and diminished its credibility. Yours faithfully, Michael Stagg
By Amanda Tsao
BRENDED “Election Strategy” by brendan lam
4 op / ed staff editorial
Face to face: facebook doesn’t count Believe it or not, when we die, our gravestones are not going to read: <your name>. Dead. Had 800 friends on Facebook. And none of them care. Where our parents may have escaped by immersing themselves in Jane Austen or Virginia Woolfe, and our older siblings got their fix by sitting in front of the television, teenagers today spend hours upon interminable hours staring at the computer screen, honing their touch typing skills in instant messages to “friends” across the globe. “Friends” as in your brother’sex-girlfriend’s-sister’s-4th gradepartner-for-the-dinosaur-project. It has been a slow but inexorable deterioration from Woolfe to “Tom” in Canada or “Juanita” in Brazil, who probably won’t remember you as soon as your face disappears from their book. It brings the transitory nature of the internet to a whole new level. “Social interaction” is the ubiquitous reply when teenagers are queried about the amount of time they spend on social networking sites. Translated into English, it means that they believe those messages and hours spent looking at pictures
of people they have never seen in real life qualify as social intercourse, and they should be commended for being sociable. The very fact that their language has to be deciphered is proof of their ability to converse. Some social interaction. The five+ hours many students spend on Facebook is the best argument yet made for parental regulation of their childrens’ internet use. Students have often complained of the amount of homework their teachers give, but looking at the other ways they spend their time, it is a hard position to defend. Every piece of homework a teacher gives takes that much time away from the student’s “social interaction.” Facebook, MySpace and pornography are banned on SAS servers. In that order of harmfulness. Kids spend infinitely more time on Facebook than they do gazing at scantily clad members of the opposite sex; Facebook is the new drug. So please. Before you whine about the amount of homework you have, how many college essays you need to finish, or how come “you don’t tag me anymore,” face the facts. Not the book.
Email the Eye: Have a comment on an article? Kindly take the time to contact the author using his or her email address.
Singapore American High School 40 Woodlands Street 41 Republic of Singapore 738547 Staff: (65) 6363-3404 x537 Adviser: (65) 6363-3404 x539 Fax: (65) 6363-6443 email@example.com
Editors-in-chief: Megan Anderson, sr. editor Amanda Tsao, Ravi Shanmugam News editor: Amanda Tsao, sr. editor, See Young Lee Op/Ed editor: Ravi Shanmugam, sr. editor; Alex Lim Features editor: Alex Boothe, sr. editor, Amber Bang, Akilesh Pant Eye In Focus editor: Devin Hardee, Hee Soo Chung A&E editor: Jon Cheng Sports editor: Barbara Lodwick Photo: Megan Anderson, Brian Riady, Jin Yoo Kim Reporters: Megan Anderson, Amber Bang, Alex Boothe, Jon Cheng, Rohin Dewan, Devin Hardee, DJ Hartman, Lorenzo Holt, Jin Yoo Kim, See Young Lee, Nick Leisiuk, Alex Lim, Barbara Lodwick, Akilesh Pant, Ravi Shanmugam, Amanda Tsao Adviser: Mark Clemens Assistant adviser: Judy Agusti
The Eye is the student newspaper of the Singapore American School. All opinions stated within these pages are those of their respective writers and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Singapore American School, its board of governors, PTA, faculty or administration. Comments and suggestions can be sent to the Eye via the Internet at eye@sas. edu.sg. At the author’s request, names can be withheld from publication. Letters will be printed as completely as possible. The Eye reserves the right to edit letters for reasons of taste and space.
October 5, 2007
Senior has arrived, dreads departure Twelve years of childhood two frees still have to turn up at 8:05 education have led up to this. Finally, and twiddle our thumbs for 90 minutes. I am a senior—the oldest kid on the The other thing is, senior privilege block. Strutting down the corridors, and is unavailable for those with less than a 2.0 GPA, and looking at kids who although mine still have years of high isn’t quite there school before them, I yet, senioritis am finally able to say might ensure my that I rule the roost. I privilege is soon can flaunt my white rescinded. So it’s senior privilege sticker not really senior in the faces of envious privilege—just underclassmen, a smart seniors’ smug grin on my lips limited privilege. as I tell them “been I find there, done that.” myself wondering, Yet perhaps what is so special seniority is not all Ravi Shanmugam about seniority? it’s made out to be when you are lower in the pecking I get to stay in bed a bit longer once order. SAS’ strict anti-hazing rules every four days. Big deal. It won’t don’t seem like such a good idea now, do that much to help with my sleep and the top floor of the caf is not that deprivation. As graduation grows ever different from the bottom. And senior closer though, I become more and more privilege is only valid for one free nostalgic. I half wish I could stay the period, so slackers like me who have hand of time. I will miss plotting with
my friends about how to get away with the latest piece of undone homework and escape the wrath of irate teachers. It feels anticlimactic. I may have waited with baited breath for this moment, but it now looks like a pyrrhic victory. As soon as I leave this school, where the worst punishment I can get is a detention and appointment with Deputy Principal Doug Neihart, I will be drafted into the army. While serving this constitutional obligation to my nation, my transgressions could be punished with anything from a suspension of leave to a court martial. Much as I gripe about the dress code and homework load, high school is looking like a sanctuary when put next to what I will face outside. Not so long ago, graduation was a distant dream. Now, it is looking distinctly unpalatable. As the clock ticks inexorably on, my high school years are vanishing all too quickly. firstname.lastname@example.org
GPA: the grades that degrade Want something teachers? Coffee parents or high expectations from on your desk every morning, or teachers, there is a standard here perhaps a batch of homemade muffins? that is becoming unhealthy. Staying Easy. Make it worth five extra up past midnight writing essays and credit points and your room is studying formulas is unacceptable guaranteed to be and extremely overflowing with detrimental enough muffins and to the health coffee to feed your of growing entire department. teenagers. This Students at community is SAS will do so obsessed almost anything to with getting ensure their GPA into name brand does not falter. colleges that it As a Red Sox fan has forgotten might religiously the true purpose check his team’s of education. standings online, Students are just Megan Anderson students monitor going through their grades on the motions and Powerschool, ready to react at memorizing lists of concepts and the slightest drop in a grade. new information without the slightest Whether it is the pressure from concern about what it all means.
Ommmm - the God we all worship
Knowledge is useless without understanding. It is probably grossly optimistic to expect some students to actually want to learn for the sake of improving their understanding, but I remain hopeful. I have a dream that one day an SAS student will pick up a newspaper and actually read it, not because they will be quizzed on it the following day, but out of sheer interest in the world around them. I have a dream that future students will not be judged by their GPA or the number of AP classes they are enrolled in, but by their curiosity and yearning to learn. I have a dream that one day students, parents and teachers of the high school community will rise up and accept the GPA for what it really is: a number. email@example.com
by Megan Anderson
By Amanda Tsao
October 5, 2007
Global controversy over cervical cancer vaccine by Amanda Tsao A teenage girl glances nervously at the visibly pregnant women in the gynecologist’s waiting room. She hears her name called, takes a deep breath, and walks in. She’s not the loose tart one might assume. Instead, she’s about to get a vaccine that can protect her against cervical cancer, a cancer that kills about 250,000 women every year, making it the second biggest cause of death among female cancer patients globally. Gardasil, the vaccine, protects against types six, 11, 16 and 18 of the human papillomavirus disease, a sexually transmitted disease that causes cervical cancer, genital warts, vulvar precancer and cervical dysplasia. Cervical cancer is caused predominantly by the human papillomavirus, a virus carried that infects eighty percent of women in the U.S by age 50 although most women with the infection don’t develop cervical cancer according to WebMD, a medical news website. With the vaccine, there is approximately a one in 14,492 chance of getting the cervical cancer associated with an HPV infection according to the “American Medical Journal.” The vaccine is intended for females age nine to 26. Developed in 2003 by pharmaceutical giant, Merck, the vaccine was approved by the World Health Organization in 2006, and has been available in Singapore since December of last year. Many parents feel their teenage daughters should be vaccinated before they leave for college. “I’ve had cancer, her grandma’s had cancer, so if there’s anything that can prevent any kind of cancer I’d want her to take [the vaccine],” said SAS parent Michelle Nelson, who
has a 24-year-old daughter who took the vaccine. Her other daughter, junior Jessica Nelson, also plans to take the vaccine when they return to the states next
that he would talk about the vaccine in class for girls who are sexually active. “In particular girls who have had multiple sex partners,” Shriner said.
it discourages the vaccination for fear of the potentially serious side effects reported. In this year’s August issue of “Maclean’s,” a Canadian weekly news magazine showed the
Left: an Australian poster encouraging women to be vaccinated for cervical cancer. Right: the front cover of a Canadian news magazine warning against potential risks of the vaccine. summer. Junior Maria Lloyd has one more shot to go before completing the entire vaccination process. “I thought it was a good idea to protect me later in life. My mom sort of wanted me to do it so I decided, ‘Why not?’” Lloyd said. Life Skills, a high school health course, includes sex issues in its curriculum. P.E. teacher Chuck Shriner, who teaches the class, said
“We talk about it during our Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) unit.” Gardasil was added to Australia’s subsidized health program in Sept 2007. Similarly in Aug 2007, Britain’s medical journal “The Lancet” said that, “European Union member states should lead other governments by making the vaccinations mandatory for all girls aged 11 to 12.” The Canadian Medical Association has gone the other way-
front cover of a nine-year-old girl with the headline: “our girls aren’t guinea pigs.” Inside, reporter Cathy Guill called it the “biggest Canadian science experiment in decades” based on interviews with several Canadian doctors. Gardasil was made available in Singapore at the end of 2006 but the government doesn’t seem to be willing to make it free for its citizens, according to Dr. Lee Wei
Hong, a consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist. “It’s unlikely because it’s costly,” Lee said. “Australia has a social security system, Singapore doesn’t. This vaccine, being expensive, probably won’t be subsidized by the government at all,” Lee said. Unlike the two to three USD Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine, which is given free by the Singapore government to protect against Tuberculosis, Gardasil costs about 350 to 500 USD for three vials. The vaccine is given in doses of three over a period of six months. “During the vaccine’s development, the method of stimulating the immune system is most effective in giving you close to 100 percent protection when there are three doses,” Lee said. Lee also compared Gardasil to the Hepatitis B vaccine, which must also be given in doses of three for optimal efficiency. According to Gardasil, females who take it have a one in 550 chance of contracting cervical cancer when coming into contact with HPV. But this doesn’t mean a free ticket to promiscuity. It doesn’t protect against any other sexually transmitted diseases nor does it protect against all causes of cervical cancer. “If someone is infected with typesay, type 52, they still run the risk of cervical cancer,” Lee said. “Women must still conduct a yearly pap smear test to keep checking. People who take the vaccine must be not be under the apprehension that they are totally protected from HPV or any STD, it’s just that the risk is much less.” firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s always morning in Ireland for retiring teacher John Hurst by Amanda Tsao in Atlanta, Georgia. When Martin Luther For English teacher John Hurst, it King Jr. was assassinated, some students was always a “Good Morning”… even threatened to beat him with their desks. when it was three in the afternoon. “Good “I managed to diffuse the situation morning,” he would greet his students but began to think about living overseas,” as they stumbled Hurst said. Later sleepy-eyed into that year when the class early in President Kennedy the day. “Good was assassinated, morning,” he he thought, “That’s would say as they it. I’m leaving this filed in just after country.” lunch. For Hurst it He moved to was a perpetually India, Pakistan and good morning. Tokyo before coming H u r s t ’s to Singapore in 1983 classroom stood On his decision to teach overseas to teach English at alone at the very SAS. Spanish teacher end of the fourth Mike Norman, who floor, an island with also taught at SAS a row of water bottles outside. He was at that time, describes one of his first famous for not allowing the sight of them encounters with Hurst. inside his room as it signified a dependance “The secretaries at that time, Bonnie, for instant satisfaction which he detested. Azizah and Siti, thought he looked like Inside hung art posters checked out from Magnum,” Norman said, in reference to the library. The commendable essays with actor Tom Selleck who acted in a television exclamation marks and vague motivational show “Magnum P.I.” slogans were nowhere to be found. Norman also remembers the time In an interview with alumni magazine when Hurst tripped over a student’s editor, Junia Baker, Hurst said he began backpack, which led to Hurst kicking bags teaching in 1967, at an all-black school out of the aisles from then on.
I thought, “‘That’s it. I’m leaving this country.’
“Afterwards I made my students put their bags under their desks because he broke his leg when he tripped,” Norman
said. Senior Carolyn Schmidt, who had sophomore English with Hurst, was surprised when she found out that he had moved and would not be returning to SAS. “There were no hints or clues that he was going to leave. I was disappointed because I signed up for British Literature especially because he taught it,” Schmidt said.
Above: Hurst stands looking over the Irish landscape in the home of his ancestors. Photo courtesy of Patricia Kuester. Inset: Hurst in 1983 when he first joined the SAS staff. Photo taken from the 1983 Islander.
Senior Brendan Lam shared a similar take on Hurst’s teaching. “He really taught me how to read,” Lam said. “He was a sarcastic person, very clever. I felt very accomplished in his class.” Hurst said he had always been interested in rare books, so when the previous bookkeeper in Ireland offered to sell him his book store as well as 80 percent of his stock at a cheap price, he knew he would never have an opportunity like it again. “I’ll miss teaching a lot, but in a way it’s another form of teaching. I’ll be teaching people the worth of old books, how to look for signs in old books,” Hurst said. His store will be called QM John C. Gibbons, 7th Cav., Interesting Books. It is named after his great-grandfather who was in General George Armstrong Custer’s 7th Cavalry. One must wonder if, right now, a customer is strolling into Hurst’s shop. It’s five o’clock in the evening. The bookstore is dimly lit through the windows. The door opens, Hurst puts his book down, looks over his spectacles, and says, “Good Morning.” email@example.com
October 5, 2007
Our Ecolo SAS’s impact
How students feel-
Results from a September survey by the Eye. 205 High school students responded. Teachers use too much paper for class strongly agree 19% agree 35%
strongly disagree 4%
Growing student population leads to sharp rise in consumption by See Young Lee
Classrooms are too cold & air-conditioning temperatures should be increased strongly disagree 10%
SAS as a community is already doing enough to conserve energy strongly disagree 11%
strongly agree 3%
agree 16% disagree 32% neutral 38% No rest for the weary as Jarrod Underwood studies for an upcoming math test. Photo by Rachel Liou.
Strongly agree 20%
meters-cubed (m3) of water consumption has increased by It is only half past seven, but the computer lab is 4.3%. already fully occupied by sleepy eyes struggling against Maintenance engineer Jumat Hamid suggested 3 major morning torpor, frantically trying to finish up the last factors can account for this soaring energy use: population sentence before the bell rings. increase, duration of usage, and growth of area. The inactivity is broken as the printing rush begins. Last year, SAS accepted 333 new students. The The printer spews out papers until finally, the last few augmented population naturally caused more water and students pick up their papers and hurry plastic materials to be used by out of the lab. more people. Also, with growing Stacks of paper are used every morning Engineers are planning number of participants in SACAC by swarms of students coming in and out and other weekend activities, to introduce an aircon of the lab. As the stacks are building up, additional hours of schoolconverter system which they are starting to pose a greater threat to wide air-conditioning came as a our conservation of energy and resources. is more efficient than the consequence, along with more A recent survey conducted with 50 electricity and water usage. conventional split-unit people in the library and the cafeteria Hamid foresees that as soon as shows that approximately 62% of students system that the school is the gym construction and floor at SAS high school use 3 or more papers space expansion are completed, currently using. each day. There is no doubt that the the growth in area will give rise to school uses large amounts of energy and even more energy consumption. resources, but the real question is, is any The maintenance department has of it wasted? thought up a list of plans to counter this upcoming rise in Junior Brian Kang said that people around him are not the energy consumption level. conscious of saving energy and resources. The engineers are planning to introduce the air“They [Students] waste a bunch of papers for nothing con inverter system, which is more efficient than the and they often throw papers away just because they don’t conventional split-unit system that the school is currently want to carry around any extra sheets of paper.” using. As for electrical usage, the department has already Kang was not alone. In a survey sent out by The Eye, installed lighting sensors in toilets in both middle school 67% out of 205 students said that the level of energy and and high school. resource dissipation was high at SAS. Many students The maintenance department is also considering the blamed excessive water use, low thermostat settings, and use of vacuum filters in the swimming pools to reduce other electrical uses. the frequency of water changes. Also, the engineers have For the last two years, kilowatt-hours (kWh) of already initiated a project in which used-up bulbs are being electrical consumption has increased by 5.84%, and switched with brighter, but lower wattage-consuming ones. The engineers’ joint effort to reduce energy does not mean that students are exempt from playing their part. Some students offered their own solutions to the problem. Rachel Tam said the plastic takeaway containers in disagree neutral the cafeteria are a huge waste of materials, highlighting a 4% 25% growing need for a plastic recycling program. “The plastic containers, forks, spoons, and knives are used by thousands of students everyday and none are being strongly . recycled,” Tam said. “I think it’s such a waste.” strongly For some students, conservation was something that agree disagree could be done on a daily basis. As simply put by senior 26% Hahneol Chung. 4% “Turn off the air-cons, turn off the lights, and recycle more.”
SAS uses too much energy agree 41%
October 5, 2007
ogical Footprint t on the environment
Students and teachers take steps towards a green campus by Amber Bang they have taught at. The elimination of most “The lights on the field are 1000 For a moment, a haze of flies fills SAVE club co-advisors are to 2000 watts per lamp, and there are Styrofoam in the cafeteria was a the air, followed by a horrible stench. science teachers Martha Began and 20 to 22 lamps on each stand. Most SAVE initiative. But one club can A putrid liquid spills from not quite Steve Early. nights they are left on from seven to only do so much. empty aluminum cans; cafeteria food “We have lots of manpower 10 p.m.” “The overall campus use of spills from the and interested SAVE club currently runs two same plastic kids,” Began programs to conserve and reduce energy is [the SAS community’s] recycling Right now, SAS has the said. “But we energy expenditures at SAS. responsibility – not SAVE’s,” Began bags. Yet largest ecological footprint are trying to Members recycle aluminum cans said.Students and faculty help out SAVE recycler come up with Wednesday and paper every per capita than any other p r o g r a m s every in the annual International Coastal Francis Yang, Friday. The paper recycling program, Cleanup, Singapore (ICCS) at the a sophomore, that will help international school in a SAVE club initiative, began in Kranji mangroves. This year, 165 and his friends further.” 1993 at the King’s Road campus. Southeast Asia. laugh while S A V E While there was a large recycling individuals from the SAS community sorting through hopes to meet bin at the King’s Road campus, the volunteered on Sept. 17 to pick up the mess they with SAS official aluminum can recycling 1,397 kilograms of trash. “Environmentalism, I think, has have made on board members program did not begin until 2002. a hard time holding onto people’s the floor of in hopes of SAVE’s ideas for the future immediate attention,” SAVE the recycling implementing include the placement of photovoltaic president, senior Evelyn Lo said. center. a system that will decrease the “The cans spill on the cart, and environmental impact SAS is causing. panels on the roof of the gym, a “They can’t see the immediate sometimes on the people. And The board has not been receptive to plastic recycling program, as well as benefit because there isn’t any there are tons of little tiny bugs previously proposed ideas due to a switch to electric or hybrid school obvious benefit. You have to keep putting in that amount of effort to go everywhere,” Yang said. “Sometimes the high cost of structures such as buses. Currently buses are left idling anywhere, and for some reason, that I feel like throwing up. But it’s fun, photo voltaic panels, which could be in front of the school for minutes sort of dedication doesn’t hold very and you can hang out with friends used to reduce the and do community service.” electricity used in Yang and his friends give up their the school. But both Wednesday afternoons to gather Began and Early bags of aluminum cans from the 60 believe that there yellow bins scattered throughout has been a shift the high school. Students Against in environmental Ridding the cafeteria of take away the Violation of the Environment awareness. plastic containers (SAVE) is the major driving force for “People have creating tighter limits on paper use environmental protection activities become more aware of in computer lab/library at SAS. energy conservation 26% reducing air-condition use SAVE was founded in 1989 by and the need for middle school students at the Ulu carbon reduction and Pandan campus, and is the largest recycling in general,” 8.80% actively recycling student organization today. Sponsors Early said. and students run paper and can Began pointed out 24.50% recycling programs, as well as eco- the effect of Al Gore’s education, energy conservation and “An Inconvenient animal protection programs. Truth” on the public’s 40.70% SAVE will reevaluate these awareness as well. efforts when it hosts a think tank “Right now, on Oct. 3 to brainstorm more ways SAS has the largest that SAS can contribute to energy ecological footprint per conservation and recycling. SAVE capita than any other well. That’s why you have groups members spoke at department faculty international school in Southeast before classes even end. meetings in all divisions of SAS to Asia,” Began said. Began suggested sending out a like SAVE and Roots and Shoots to invite teachers to attend the think She pointed out specific things green newsletter electronically to keep environmentalism out in the front.” tank, hoping that they will bring at the school that were huge the SAS community to provide tips Some faculty members ideas from other overseas schools contributors of waste. to minimize energy use and waste noticeably do things at school to generation.
Martha Began SAVE sponsor
Actions students are most willing to take to reduce our ecological footprint
Make the SWITCH
reduce energy use. Middle school teacher Jim Diebley owns a bright orange single-passenger vehicle, the Sparrow, which strictly battery powered. High school teacher Dr. Smith put tape flaps at the bottoms of his doors to prevent air conditioning from blowing through the cracks. Some teachers ride motorcycles or bicycles to school, which cuts down on the amount of carbon emissions. Teacher Fred Crawford bikes 12 kilometers to school every morning. “I haven’t used a plastic bag since the middle of last year, and I haven’t used a plastic plate in two years,” Crawford said. While SAVE has created considerble environmental awareness at SAS, students are slow to apply those lessons directly. School accounts have limited each student to 200 sheets of black and white print per quarter, but with a simple request to the Tech Help Center, many have been able to increase that limit. “I don’t know if teachers are more involved, but I definitely see teachers saving paper more than students,” Lo said. As for the lack of involvement students seem to have outside participation in SAVE, Early pointed out the great involvement in other activities that many students have. “People get stretched thinly over many clubs, so they are potentially overbooked,” Early said. “It makes it hard for them to do much more [outside SAVE].” Lo said that ultimately it was the simple things that people could do, such as turning off the lights, not using the air conditioning if it is not needed and turning on the water heater only if the shower is being used. “I think, over time, it would have a large impact,” Lo said. “Because the energy you save – it adds up.”
small things you can do to make a big difference
Use the washable plates provided by the cafeteria instead of the plastic containers
Carpool or take the bus instead of taking a car or taxi to and from school Instead of buying bottled water every time you get thirsty, use a refillable nalgene or water bottle
When possible decrease margin and font sizes to conserve paper
October 5, 2007
I-Spy continues trend of experimentation, innovation by Hee Soo Chung She rubs her eyes, obviously tired of telling people to listen. “You guys, will you PLEASE listen?” senior Esha Parikh yells. It is yet another rehearsal and the dancers go over the moves again and again throughout the 90-minute practice. Rehearsals are underway for the Nov. 16 dance performance of “I-Spy.” The popular children’s book series “Where is Waldo?” inspired this year’s dance show where there is a distinct person or a prop to look for. Each dance features different props, music and styles to go with the scene. The twelve choreographers chose settings for this year’s dance performance, which include a desert oasis, an elevator, a bathroom and a haunted house. Ten male dancers are among the 110 dancers participating in this show. Last year’s dance show, “Clue”, had a smaller cast and only one male dancer. Junior Matt McHugh, a Dance II student, joined “I-Spy” because he started taking a greater interest in dance this year. He admitted that being a male dancer is awkward. “Being one of the only guys makes it awkward because usually
GET YOUR HEAD IN THE GAME: Dancers get into a song from High School Musical. It will be featured in this year’s dance show.
dance is a girl’s thing and it’s an unusual thing to find a guy [who dances],” McHugh said. “It’s sort of weird to go off to dance class when other guys are getting ready for sports.” McHugh said that everyone thinks he is talented because he dances, but he said it’s not as easy as it looks. “I can easily pick up moves but it’s challenging if the choreographer
moves too fast,” McHugh said. Sophomore dancer Hayden Marushi moved from Virginia this year. Marushi has been involved in Irish dancing since he was nine years old. “I wanted to get involved, and it sounded fun,” Marushi said. “My old school didn’t have dance shows.” Marushi said that stereotypes of male dancers are unfair. “I don’t like those stereotypes,”
Marushi said. “My friends think it’s really cool that I’m involved.” Freshmen Samantha Isman moved here from Brazil this year. She said that “I-Spy” is different from any dance she has been in before at her old school. “I find the dance we’re doing right now easier than the ones I did in Brazil,” Isman said. “The rehearsals there were two hours longer and I had it twice a week.”
Isman had mixed emotions about the dance practices and the show. “It’s challenging to practice in such a small space, but I like it a lot. I find it really fun,” Isman said. “I think [the theme] is sort of confusing but it’s cool that you have to search for a person [in the show].” Senior Juvenalia Brito has been participating in dance shows since her sophomore year and said she tries to participate in as many dances as she can. Even the veteran Brito has difficulties sometimes. Although she admitted that she has improved as a dancer, she said remembering choreography is one of the most challenging aspects of dancing. “Getting my body to coordinate with different dancers and making it natural for the moves to happen is hard,” Brito said. She said she finds it fun to learn new dances and try moves she is not used to doing with her body. “When I’m dancing, I’m able to concentrate on the dance without worrying about anything else. I try my best to do what I’m doing and have fun at it.” firstname.lastname@example.org
No book for discerning readers
by Ravi Shanmugan Few writers can transmit the wrenching grief and haunting feeling of loss that Cormac McCarthy inspired in his readers with “The Border Trilogy” (“All the Pretty Horses,” “The Crossing,” “Cities of the Plain”). His stunning description of a ragged, d e s o l a t e landscape brought the American frontier into the homes of fans from New York to Melbourne and Singapore, winning him a devoted readership, a National Book Award, and propelling him into international fame. Fans waited longingly for McCarthy’s next inspiration, thinking of a novel with the same
Tom Bell, a colorful law enforcer haunted by a chequered past. While McCarthy manages to keep an air of suspense throughout the novel, it is a book forgotten as soon as it’s put down. “No Country for Old Men” doesn’t create the lasting sadness of “The Border Trilogy.” If “No Country for Old Men” had not been written without quotation marks, a hallmark of McCarthy’s, it could have been a Grisham or Carolyn Keene (The Adventures of Nancy Drew). Despite the glowing commendation McCarthy’s publisher gave the novel in the blurb, McCarthy aficionados should give it a skip. When Moss takes the money, it gives McCarthy an opportunity to preach on right and wrong. He adopts a high moralistic tone to tell readers what we should and should not do. “No Country for Old Men” would make excellent Sunday school "Every moment in your life is a turning reading, but and every one a choosing. Someotherwise it is a where you made a choice. All followed letdown after the to this. The accounting is scrupulous. brilliance of “The The shape is drawn. No line can be Border Trilogy.” erased. I had no belief in your ability A film to move a coin to your bidding. How adaptation of “No could you? A person's path through Country for Old the world seldom changes and even Men” by Joel and more seldom will it change abruptly. Ethan Cohen has And the shape of your path was visjust been released. ible from the beginning." The script, with its relentless pace from “No Country for Old Men” and adventure, should make a good transition to the screen. It is one kill Moss and recover the money. McCarthy effectively places the of the few books that might actually reader in Moss’ shoes, and only the be better as a movie. most heartless can fail to feel for the email@example.com isolated Texan. His one ally is Sheriff extensive scope and perfectly chiseled characters they had come to expect from McCarthy after “Cities of the Plain” was published in 1998. A seven-year wait culminated in bitter disappointment when “No Country for Old Men” came out in 2005. The plot is more suited to a John Grisham adventure than the speculative insight and elegant sophistication that won McCarthy renown. Llewelyn Moss, a struggling Texan, finds “men shot dead, a load of heroin, and more than $2 million in cash” while out hunting. Moss takes the money home to his young wife, cementing his involvement in a tug of war between two drug gangs. Two hitmen, the depraved Anton Chigurgh and his no less ruthless ex-partner Wells are determined to
Apple’s fall line. The new iPods include “fall” colors, Nanos with a high res screen, a 160GB Classic and the much ballyhooed iPod Touch below.
Apple up to usual tricks with new line
by Jon Cheng & Jin Yoo Kim While the iPhone craze has died down in the U.S., the rest of the world eagerly awaits its arrival, but some fans might be content with what Apple unveiled Sept. 5: the newly refurbished iPod family. The new iPod Shuffle comes with “remixed” colors, while an exterior improvement features a new facelift with a plastic-like metallic finish; eschewing the previous models’ glossy finish. It also doubles as an exerternal hardrive with storage capacities of 80GB and 160GB. Retail price for the 80GB is S$428, while the other is priced at S$170 more. With five new colors and a new metallic finish, the new and improved iPod Nano features high-resolution video playback. The physical size remains the same -- a wider but shorter body that accomodates a larger two-inch LCD screen. The price range for the Nano retails from S$428(4GB) to S$348 (8GB) Many Apple fans, frustrated with the iPhone delay outside the US, might be satisfied with the new iTouch; essentially, a “de-phoned”
iPhone. Apple’s new gizmo, priced from S$498, comes with a thinner body (with an anodized aluminum backing) and software capabilities of the iPhone - the much acclaimed multi-touch 3.5 inch interface, direct wireless downloads from iTunes (except videos), wireless internet surfing on a full-version Safari. For such technological ingenuity, size does matter. The two versions come in 8GB and 16GB; the latter is priced at S$698. Influential critics gave the iPods the thumbs-up despite disapprovals from tech-savvy users. New York Times technolo gy writer David Pogue said: “You’d have to be a real Grinch to find fault with this sweet piece of engineering, even if you’re one of those curmudgeonly bloggers who counts nothing but the specs.” For the most part, his review was positive with exceptions to the iTouch. He described the music playback as the iPod Touch’s “least succesful feature.” Ooops. firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
October 5, 2007
Gorno’s Anatomy: Horror Cinema’s Wrong Turn by Jon Cheng The not-so-familiar sound of crunched bones, blood splatters, and blood-curdling screams breaks the silence of the movie theater. Some viewers in the audience watches in grimace, while others take pleasure in the grisly gore. It is not long before some viewers begin leaving the theater. Over the past four years, the cinema industry has been inundated with films that test the limits of violence. The liberal use of “torture porn” is a recent trend. This subgenre, also known as “splat-stick” or “Gorno,” employs scenes of senseless, explicit violence and gore. Scenes of violence are coupled with sadistic tortures (a la “Saw”), and enough blood to top the Hoover Dam. Many cinema-goers seem to“enjoy” this. They would be
interested in, perhaps, a scene from Saw III, where a person has his limbs gradually torn apart by Jigsaw’s devilish machine. This popular movie franchise grossed an average of $62.3 million USD per film, with an average budget of just $2 million. The “Saw” franchise was followed up with films such as “Wolf Creek” (2005), “Hostel” (2005), “Hostel II” (2007). The sub-genre garnered varied critical responses. Critic David Edelstein’s opinion was less than praiseworthy. He described the development as “a sadistic and nihilistic movie trend” in the February issue of the New York Times Magazine. But most horror fans embrace the change according to several online surveys. A recent movie poll on prettyscary.net polled 197 voters. At least 45% felt that “Saw,” “Hostel,” “The Devils Rejects,” and
“Captivity” (2007) were not tortureporn flicks. ” “[The films] are awesome! I like the suspense and the situation, but I think ‘Hostel’ was too cruel,” said junior Viendy Alim. Among the few who criticize the genre’s opposition are the movie directors. For them, the coinage of the term, “torture porn” is a contrived misnomer; a term liberally used to describe films depicting gratuitous and graphic violence. Writer Stephen King expressed his opposition in an open letter to the L.A. Times. “There’s something going on in Hostel II that isn’t torture porn, there’s really something going on there that’s interesting on an artistic basis…sure it makes you uncomfortable, but good art should make you uncomfortable,” King said. firstname.lastname@example.org
Doc looks at different sort of summer camp by Megan Anderson Tory falls to her knees, raising her hands to the ceiling as tears stream down her freckled cheeks. The children surrounding her prove equally charismatic. Some speak in tongues while join Tory on the floor. Pastor Becky Fischer stands onstage and leads the congregation of evangelical children in prayer at the “Kids on Fire” summer camp. Even the most open minded and tolerant person can’t help but be shocked by some of the scenes in the documentary “Jesus Camp”. In the Academy Award nominated film, producers Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing document Tory, Levi and Rachael attending the “Kids on Fire” summer camp. Evangelicalism refers to a large group of religious beliefs, namely in connection with Protestant Christians and some Evangelical Catholics. Pentecostalism is a subdivision of Evangelicalism. Pentecostals emphasize a direct personal experience of God through the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Speaking in tongues is common in many Pentecostal churches. Many Evangelical Christians believe in the creationist theory and
that homosexuality and abortion should be outlawed. At the camp the children are taught to become “dedicated Christian soldiers in God’s army,” so they can “take back America for Christ.” One scene features Ted Haggard, the former president of the National Association of Evangelicals preaching to the 14,000 members of the New Life Church in Colorado. “We don’t have to debate about what we should think about homosexual activity. It’s written in the Bible,” Haggard says. Shortly after the film was released Haggard admitted to sexually immorality when he was accused of gay sex and methamphetamine use. The film sparked an enormous amount of controversy in the United States. Although the producers claim to have created an objective view, some claim the documentary sheds a negative light on the Evangelical faith. The “Kids on Fire” summer camp is now closed because of negative reactions to the film. After vandals trashed the campgrounds, Fischer announced its closure for at email@example.com
Bookmark: Freakonomics by Megan Anderson Our society loves to accept things as they appear, but often times illusion does not equal reality, and what we perceive as truth turns out to be utterly wrong. In order to avoid the acceptance of conventional wisdom Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner wrote the book titled “Freakonomics”, in which they analyze the most random data to disprove what could
have once been considered common knowledge. From cheating teachers and Yakuza, the Japanese mafia, to drug dealers and the overrated importance of parents, this witty book delves into the hard facts to debunk long held stereotypes. Perfect for a plane ride, or a trip to the beach- this book is sure to surprise and entertain any reader. firstname.lastname@example.org
Dial L-O-H-A-N for torture By Jon Cheng “I Know Who Killed Me” is a half-serious horror thriller starring Lindsay Lohan. It’s also a B-grade movie that bludgeons the formulaic horror genre. Post-rehab Lohan is Aubrey Flemming, a svelte high school student who has an affinity for writing short stories and playing the piano. On a movie night out with friends, she gets separated from them and is captured by a crazed maniac who brings her to his laboratory for experiments in torture. Convinced she is dead, the torturer dumps Aubrey in a forest near an old highway. A driver, whose car breaks down on the same road, discovers Aubrey’s body. The twist comes when Lohan’s character reveals herself as Dakota Moss, a stripper at a gentlemen’s club and coincidentally, a character that Aubrey created in one of her stories. Dakota decides to investigate the attempted murder and solve the mystery of her “alternate persona” claimed by her parents. She stumbles upon secret events hidden by her father. Eventually, she uncovers plots revolving around her torturer and a deadly conspiracy. It’s hard to tell which is worse - the plot that meanders aimlessly or the clichéd characters. The FBI agents who interrogate Dakota are anything but believable; expect competency of a level equivalent to acting school dropout. Also, Aubrey’s parents seem to be managing their grief well, despite the fact that their stripper daughter
LAUGHABLE HORROR. Lohan exits the gentlemens club where her second, alternate personality is employed as a stripper. Alas, evil lurks over her alternate shoulder.
clearly is not, they think, theirs. The movie brims to the top with plot holes, laughable dialogue and a jittery pace. There are ambiguous scenes that are downright slapstick humor; whether it was intentional or accidental is rather unclear. A traumatized Dakota, equipped with a prosthetic limb and an electric hand, makes love to Aubrey’s admirer. Could this really be a horror film? What further degrades this “film” is the direction, which is uninspiring. The indulgent inyour-face symbolism of red and blue is tiring – virtually every scene is bathed with either blue hues, symbolizing “good.” or red hues, meaning “bad.” Explicitly presented, the oh-so-inventive symbolism almost seems targeted at a senile audience. The pace is awkwardly peppered with bits of sexual elements. A three-minute sequence of Lohan pole dancing with a skimpy top on and others like it is obviously a marketing ploy targeted for the “Maxim” audience or teenage boys. Even then, it’s not very stimulating. Maybe “Mean Girls” is the closest Lohan will come to a remotely decent acting role. Her first-ever attempt at a “serious” role is not a wise choice. Playing a dumb-blonde character would have been the wiser choice. In fact, she should really stick to she what does best: moan, groan and drone. Watching “I Know Who Killed Me” is 100 minutes of pure torture. email@example.com
October 5, 2007
Infraction prompts uniform athletics contract Contract to be extended to all IASAS events including Cultural Convention
Athletic contracts, in some people’s opinions, are just a piece of paper that you sign and forget about. Others view it as an unbendable code that must be followed. The boys’ soccer contract says explicitly that drinking and smoking will not be tolerated. One instance has prompted a uniform contract for all sports and activities. (See sidebar) Contracts for all sports vary in restrictions and consequences. Some contracts operate on a “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, while others are “zero tolerance” policy. “Contracts are making a commitment to a team. Making choices not to drink or smoke,” soccer coach Tim Zitur said. Starting next season, all sports will have a uniform contract. Previously, coaches were allowed to write their own contracts or use one given by the athletics department.
At a coaches meeting, Wednesday Oct. 3, the coaches of second season heard what their contracts must include, and what the consequences for infractions would be. “Coaches can still write their own policies, but it must meet requirements that have been laid out. Also, consequences have to be within the same threshold in all contracts,” Norris said. For the remainder of the year, non-athletic IASAS events will have no contract at all except during an IASAS event like Cultural Convention or dance. However, starting next year, those activities will be under contract that is decided upon by the sponsors of the activities. “The rules will be more uniform, and policy will be clear and consistent.” Norris said.
stories by Barbara Lodwick
Varsity athlete’s smoking and curfew violations provide incentive for change
On the Friday before the soccer exchange, a senior boys’ soccer captain was caught smoking, in uniform, at the bus stop by his home. A father, seeing the senior smoking, called the intermediate school principal who passed the message on to Deputy Principal Doug Neihart. Neihart informed Zitur, who suspended the senior from the team for the duration of the exchange. That same Friday night, the student who was officially on the exchange roster, was not called for curfew. Although Zitur had informed him twice that he would be called. The following Saturday night, the senior decided to spend the night at his girlfriend’s house, and informed his mother to give the coach the house number there. “When the coaches called, my house phone
was busy and they called my cell phone. I answered, gave my girlfriend’s house number to him, and he said we would talk about it on Monday,” the senior said. On Monday afternoon Athletics Director Will Norris, Zitur, and the player had that ‘talk’. It was decided that because the punishments befitting smoking, his first offense and missing curfew, his second offense, would last until IASAS. It was decided that the senior would be off the team. The punishments might not have been as harsh had the infractions not occurred during an IASAS event. Because the exchange was in fact an IASAS event, the senior was subject to its rules. IASAS rules clearly state that any student who misses curfew will be suspended, and not allowed to participate in the next IASAS.
Campus Life CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Emily Brotman and Alice Grgas hang out during the peer support convention; peer supporter freshman Kerin Webber laughs; students watch the “name that tune” spirit activity; Andy Szombathy cheers as his team gets an answer right; Brian Riady discovers the joys of tamborine at IASAS leadership; peer supporters finish their meditation excercise in the library; Belal Hakim embarasses Eric Burnett at Taipei airport; Peer supporters listen for instructions. Photos by Brian Riady
October 5, 2007
Eight new players no obstacle to Eagle success in Jakarta
The girls’ 12-member volleyball team huddles and cheers before a game. Eight players are new to the team. Photo by Kate McCabe
by Alex Boothe Junior Michelle Sims arrived in the Jakarta airport for the first time with a group of people she had met only weeks earlier. Before that weekend, the only thing she knew for sure they had in common was volleyball. Sims is one of eight new girls on the 12-member varsity volleyball team. The September eighth volleyball exchange was her first. “I wasn’t sure what to expect,” said Sims, who came to SAS from California this year. “I thought it was different to house with families from other schools, and I thought it would be awkward [staying with the girls on the team], but after talking to
the girls and getting to know them it wasn’t awkward at all.” The girls were three for four, losing one game to the International School of Kuala Lumpur (ISKL). The boys beat ISKL and lost to both Jakarta International School (JIS) and the International School of Bangkok (ISB). Three of the six IASAS schools, ISKL, JIS, and SAS, attended the exchange for girls’ volleyball; for boys the same schools were in attendance along with the boys’ Bangkok team. “Without their one star player, Meghan Hollister, KL started playing as a team, and with three power players we had to start focusing on defense, which is going to make them
a tough opponent come October.” senior captain Barb Lodwick said. Sims thought the team as a whole had improved, since the beginning of the year. She feels there will be more improvement; however, she said she cannot be certain because she has never experienced the intensity of an IASAS event. Junior Elle Marsh, who transferred from ISB this year, is no stranger to that intensity. She has been an ISB varsity volleyball player since freshman year and was a captain her sophomore year. This year she believes she must step her intensity up a notch. “ This exchange definitely had more pressure because SAS has such
a high reputation,” Marsh said. Freshman Celeste Marsh, Elle’s younger sister, is not only a freshman at a completely new school, but she’s also one of only two freshmen on the varsity team. At ISB, being a freshman on the varsity volleyball team was not a tremendous feat because of the volleyball participants. “Being a freshman on the [SAS] team makes me happy and nervous because it’s such a big accomplishment here,” she said, “I was nervous a lot, I don’t know why but I was, but I think I did pretty well [in the exchange] for my first time.” Both girls are nervous about confronting old Bangkok friends and
teammates at IASAS this October. “We’re traitors!” Celeste said. At least that’s what classmates wrote in both the girls’ ISB yearbooks at the end of last year. “I know it will be exciting, but it will be a little emotional playing against our previous ‘home’,” Elle said, “but we’re representing SAS now so it will have to be okay.” Celeste and Elle said they are not exactly sure what to expect this time around playing for a different team. “It’s going to be a completely different mentality,” Elle said. “Yeah, what she said,” Celeste said.
Cross-country runners face small obstacles in Manila by Devin Hardee Cross-country runners expect to encounter obstacles during a race. But when the gun went off at the start of the girls’ race in Manila, no one had anticipated what happened next. “Many little kids fell within the first 200 meters of the start,” senior Patricia Mar said. “I almost tripped over a little girl that fell over right in front of me.” It was not just other high school students that the boys and girls team were competing against. Many younger kids also ran in the race, adding a whole new dimension. In the girls 3.2k race and the boys 5k race the grassy course was also more challenging and the number of runners was much greater compared to previous exchange races usually consisting of 40 participants or less. In the girls’ race, there were 87 participants, and the boys had even more runners with 140 participants. Besides the two IASAS schools that attended (Taipei American School (TAS) and International School of Manila (ISM)) many of the runners
Juniors Brian Robertson and Evan Shawler lead the Eagles to a second place finish. Photo by Patricia Mar
were from other international and local schools in Manila. Despite the hardships, both the girls and boys team finished strongly. The girls came out on top, beating ISM by one point, and the boys came in second, beating out both the other IASAS schools that participated by
73 points. Manila’s UE beat the boys by only 7 points. While the team performed well overall, the race served as a wake up call. Senior Renuka Agarwal, captain and former IASAS champion who finished second in the race, knew that this year would be particularly
challenging for the girls. “The competition is becoming tougher,” she said. “This year we are going to have to fight for it.” Stronger as a pack this year, four of their runners took 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th place following senior Renuka Agarwal and junior Avery
Shawler. “To win IASAS again this year we are going to have to play up our strengths,” Agarwal said. “The key to success is to tighten up our pack even more.” While the girls faced more competition, the boys dominated. With new talent like junior Brian Robertson who finished third overall and first among IASAS schools and freshman Joonghoon Baek who placed tenth overall, the boys team is as solid as ever with the gap closing between each runner. “Our times are a lot faster this year,” Junior Evan Shawler said. “We are definitely strong competitors for IASAS.” As the first cross-country exchange in Manila for all members of the team, it turned out to be a successful, eye-opening experience. Running in a bigger race provided greater challenges and a chance to scope out the competition. “We now have a better idea of what we are up against,” Agarwal said. firstname.lastname@example.org
October 5, 2007
Photo by Caitlin Murray
Girls prove victorious at exchange despite young defense by Alex Lim The SAS girl’s soccer team entered the annual soccer exchange with a relatively inexperienced defense. By the end of the tournament, they looked like they had been playing together all their lives. The defense turned in a dominating performance, managing to hold opponents without a
goal in all three games. Somewhat unexpected considering the defense had undergone a radical change from a year ago. “We were pretty intimidated by some of the other teams as we had lost our entire defense from a year ago,” team captain Natalie Favati said, “the defense had been the strongest part of our team.”
The defense was complimented by an explosive offense headed by Junior Erin Morris. Morris was a major catalyst, turning in consecutive hat tricks en route to scoring a team high of eight goals all in a span of three games. The Eagles went 3-0, beating KL 7-0, Bangkok 3-0 and JIS 5-0. Eagles coach, Don Adams felt that
the exchange benefited the team despite the fact that the games had no impact on the Eagle’s IASAS standings. “It was a good experience playing against other high school students, and it allowed us to see the caliber of the other IASAS schools,” Adams said. “We’re starting to come along (for IASAS) and the girls are learning as they go, although the defense is still
inexperienced.” Co captain Alex Shualis hoped the team’s performance during the exchange would be a sign of things to come for the upcoming IASAS tournament. “We just have to keep doing what we’ve been doing all season long,” Shualis said, “We’re going for the gold.”
Senior striker Alex Shaulis scored the 47th goal of her varsity soccer career. Her accomplishment puts her in SAS’s history as leading female goal scorer, having outscored the former record holder Amy Voss (1996-2000).
Photo by Phil Boston
Eagles struggle with young talent and four returning players by Alex Lim The SAS boy’s varsity soccer team left the annual soccer exchange with plenty of room for improvement after going 0-3. The offense managed to score only one goal all tournament while lapses in concentration overshadowed a fairly decent performance from the defense. Eagles coach Tim Zitur said the losses were a direct result of inexperience; the team had only returned four starters from a year ago, and a lack of motivation on part of the players. “We started off okay against KL but we weren’t very enthusiastic,” Zitur said, “Guys need to go to the ball harder and be more committed.” Junior Nihal Varkey said he didn’t think the team was very far off in terms of being able to win games. ‘We did everything well up to that point by we just couldn’t finish,’
Varkey said, “The exchange allowed us to gain more experience as a team and we should be ready by IASAS.” For team captain, senior Jordan Reed, injuries played a major role in the Eagle’s losses. “5 of our starters were injured,” Reed said, “I think we’re doing better now that everyone’s healthy and we’ve had an opportunity to play together.” Reed also provided his prognostication for the upcoming I A S A S tournament. “I think we’re going to get a medal,” Reed said. The Eagles went 0-3, losing to KL 2-1, Bangkok 2-0 and JIS 1-0. New goal keaper Sandy Morris prepares to stop a panther shot. SAS web photo gallery
Junior Nihal Varkey dribbles past two ISB defenders. SAS Web photo gallery.
Published on Oct 25, 2007
Published on Oct 25, 2007
Taipei American School drops underclassmen’s ‘interim’ program because of costs, lost class days Singapore American High School October 5, 2...