The Mustang November 2017

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Volume 22 Issue 2



NEED A HOT DATE? Upcoming events at SDA





SDA’s annual ping pong tournament will continue until the first of December. Sign up!

The SDA blood drive is being hosted by the San Diego Blood Bank in the school gym from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm.

The SDA Bazaar will take place during homeroom and lunch. Bring money!

Voting for ASB officers continues until Tuesday, December 19 in front of the PAC. Make sure to vote!

ROLL CALL Editor-in-Chief / News Editor Olivia Olander Design Editor Simmone Stearn Opinion Editor Mallika Seshadri Features Editors Taylor Gates Nohemia Rosales Arts Editor Taylor Rudman Humor Editor Nadia Ballard

TAKE A GOOD LOOK... Highlights in the Mustang November issue

Discover a Thanksgiving meal gone wrong on page 13 Two SDA students recount their terrifying experience while cooking a Thanksgiving meal with contemporary twists. Their wild misadventures, although messy, resulted in some mediocre food and an awful lot of fun. Consider it a cautionary tale; readers beware, you’re in for some slight over exaggerations, self-deprecation, and you might be hungry afterwards (probably not).

Find more details about art on the new Math and Science building on page 14 The blank white walls of the new building are perhaps, for some, the symbol of a new beginning. Art Leadership students have been working towrard putting their own touch on this new piece of SDA, but face obstacles such as legal issues.


Cover Artist

Sophomore Marina Alberti was introduced to art by her parents at a young age. She was given art supplies and freedom for creation. “They actually gave me the opportunity to get into art and [let me know] that art existed,” says Alberti. She made the cover piece from a donated piece to the art department, retaining the color scheme but turning it into her own unique artwork: “It had a really beautiful color scheme and so I just incorporated that.”

Backpage Photographer


Sports Editor / Business Manager Yari Sequeria Online Editor Sophie Hughes Assistant Online Editor Sylvia Young Photo Editor Patrick Hall Staff Artist Emma Toscani Staff Writers Tom Amoroso Drew Atkins Alyssa Fisher Ashlyn Haines Jack Hauser Ava Jakubowski Amelia Kaiser Sarah LaVake Julia Lucero Lena Mau Hunter McGahan Taina Millsap Sienna Riley Kamryn Romley Jenna Weinhofer Advisor Tim Roberts The Mustang is the student newspaper of San Dieguito Academy. Advertisements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the newspaper. The Mustang is an open forum which welcomes letters. Letters can be submitted to room 44, emailed to or mailed to the address below.

San Dieguito Academy Room 44 800 Santa Fe Drive Encinitas, CA 92024

Sophomore Jonny Hammer has been shooting photos for many years ever since he got a camera from his brother, the camera he still uses to this day. “I just enjoy taking pictures and expressing my creativity through pictures,” Hammer said. He was drawn to this particular photo while shooting at sunset. “I saw the palm tree and the colors in the sky,” he said, “and they just went well together.”


NOV 2017


Cooking up campus changes The math and science building may be complete, but that was only the beginning. A huge arts and humanities building, a new culinary kitchen and a special education program are all in the works. By Olivia Olander


he upcoming construction of a massive arts and humanities building on campus will bring new arts studios and likely a special education program, according to Principal Adam Camacho. Culinary classes are also preparing to move into their own newly renovated space over Thanksgiving break, which will allow construction to move forward across campus. Construction on this latest project will not start until other parts of campus are cleared. Art classes will move into the older portable buildings (P1-3) that currently house the kitchens, Camacho said, although that move will likely not occur until January at the turn of the semester. This will allow construction to commence on the new building. Culinary Close to Complete Culinary arts teacher Scott Huntley said his new room will “look like a top-notch culinary school,” and that it’s “actually probably a nicer kitchen than most restaurants.” The new space will include an attached, dedicated classroom, which is a change from the current setup, Huntley said. There will also be a specialized area for baking and a “really high-end, nice ice cream machine, which will allow us to expand some of the stuff we do on campus for Exhibition Day,” he said. After over three years in a portable classroom, Huntley said he’s excited to have a more permanent kitchen. He said this year’s new culinary classes (Baking and Pastry and Sous Chef) are not a direct result of the new construction, but that the construction contributed to his inspiration in creating those classes. “The district and the community have been very generous with

this new building,” he said. “It’s going to be very fancy, so making sure we’re using it to its fullest, and having a dedicated cooking space that we’re able to use all day long will be fantastic.” A New Place for Art Meanwhile, art teacher Jeremy Wright has been preparing to move his class. The process includes working section by section throughout the arts rooms and disposing of “about half ” of the contents, as well as relocating or storing the remaining items, Wright said. The history of art in that building, which includes rooms 60-61, spans 40 years, Wright said. Some of the pieces collected over the years have been moved to the media center, classrooms, science labs and a teacher bathroom, he said. Due to the lengthiness of this moving process, Wright said he requested to not switch rooms until second semester, as opposed to the originally planned deadline of winter break. This new building will be the first specially designed art space “in SDA history,” he said, as opposed to art classes being placed in any vacant classroom - for example, Wright said, the current painting room was originally designated as a farm mechanics classroom. He said he’s most excited for the open parts of the building, which includes patios and “ten-foot wide folding doors” on the studios. “It’s facing east, so I’m already looking forward to the morning sunlight coming in and that kind of thing,” he said. “It’s been a difficult process, as far as trying to be on the same page as the architects and all the people that are behind it, but

THIS BIRD’S EYE view depicts the floorplan and outdoor layout of the two-story arts and humanities building, which will include patios and large studios. Rendering courtesy of Adam Camacho. we’re getting closer.” Special Ed at SDA Looking forward, the arts and humanities building is expected to be finished for the fall of 2019, but is still currently out for bid, Camacho said. This newest structure will have self-contained rooms fit for special education programs, although Camacho said the type of program has not yet been decided. He said administration and the San Dieguito Union High School District as a

whole are researching different options, but that the conversation is still in its early stages. Camacho said the program will most likely be contained, as opposed to mixed into the overall student body, because of the self-contained classrooms planned for the building. “There are classrooms that are predesignated for a program like that,” he said. “They have an internal sort of office space, a meeting room, and some have even a kitchenette to potentially serve students that might

need those services.” Beyond physical aspects of the building, he said administration is looking at how a special education program would integrate into other parts of SDA. “The layout of our school and our bell schedule all come into play as far as what their regular day program would look like,” he said about planning the potential program. “Can we accommodate it? What are the challenges? Those conversations are fun to have.”

Glass screens over graph paper in new classes

Some math classes went paperless this year, garnering mixed reactions from students. By Taina Millsap


his new school year has come with many innovations at SDA, including the adoption of a new way of running classrooms without paper. Math teacher Brittany Ifergan’s classroom is the only one that has adopted the method, which she said keeps all assignments electronic, modernizing the classroom environment and ultimately reducing paper waste. The math department told students that the school is doing only one class at a time to observe how students respond to it, and to be able to have a perfected program and fix


problems before implementing it in all classes. In addition, the district is looking for a way to reduce costs of printing, since the recently redesigned “integrated” math classes print their modules and waste more money than it would cost to buy students new computers, Ifergan said. ”[The changes] would allow students way better access to technology while cutting down printing costs, giving students one on one [technological] assistance,” she said. Ifergan said she’s in favor of adopting this new strategy. “I think

this can definitely better [students’] learning because technology is not something that's going away, and it’s going to be an even bigger part of their life in college and in jobs.” she said. “On computers we can make learning more fun and more interactive for students.” The new method has brought controversy, as some students say they need physical copies of material to learn better. Senior Magdely Benitez said, “It’s affected me in a negative way. Writing on paper gave me more space to write down my thoughts and notes and it's harder on

a Chromebook … It’s also makes it easier to get distracted.” “I don't think the school should adopt this method because some people prefer to use paper like me even though the Chromebooks are more interactive,” she continued. On the other hand, some students prefer the new paperless classes. “I’m learning more effectively and interacting more with the class … It would be useful if other academic classes adopted it. I’ll never want it to be 100 percent paperless but I think the changes are still great,“ said senior Phoebe Henshilwood.

Some students, like Benitez, have also argued that although teachers aren’t printing, the students are going to the library or home to print their own materials. This would defeat the purpose of the idea behind paperless classroom. Ifergan said the district's overall idea is to slowly implement new modernizations into the school and take students into a new era of technology surrounded school materials. She added that teachers are hoping all students will eventually be assigned a Chromebook to take home and work on.




NOV 2017


Paperless classrooms look good on paper, but what about in reality?

Paperless classrooms have arrived at SDA, but there are still issues with the system.


am taking a paperless math class, with different classmates. and we use laptops with touchThe other real problem is even screens almost every day. When more dreadful. Many I was first introduced to the idea of teachers claim to have a these paperless classes, it was dauntpaperless classroom, yet ing; because I am not the best at they allow students to working with computers. print whole modules on The paperless concept is a one sided paper and then progressive idea meant to encourage administers tests on paper. and promote interaction between They say they have a paperstudents in an environmental less class but never enforce the friendly way. paperless aspect. For me it is all The idea of these classes seems or nothing; if we are going to go good on paper, paperless, then go or should I say paperless. Do not not on paper, claim to be someI’m only here for the free but there are thing you are not, printer paper. two major especially when gripes I have changing the name Hunter McGahan about the is an easy fix. system. \First, I Even if this is was forced into a progressive classthis paperless room, we still have class against a lot more progress my will. In the to make. The idea future, students should be informed of a paperless classroom is not the if a class is paperless in the course route to go because it is impossible to description in a clear, orderly fashentirely stand by its the name. ion. Regardless of how a class is Students can find it difficult executed, if it were to be completely to get out of a paperless class once paperless, it would still be draining in one because it might be assumed for students who prefer paper rather they want to change teachers or be than the new progressive method.

Illustration by Drew Atkins

Diversifying the literature we read

Literature read in English classes should voice other, marginalized, perspectives.


efore we started studying works of literature in school — not counting being read stories aloud — I was always drawn to strong willed, intelligent and book-loving female characters who advocated for what they thought was right. When I was five years old and in my Disney phase, Belle was the princess I most wanted to emulate. When I started devouring Roald Dahl books, Matilda became my favorite literary character. When I became a “Harry Potter” fan, Hermione became my heroine. But, once we started to read for school in third grade, it all seemed to shift. Every once in a while, the books in elementary would give voice to a strong female protagonist. By the time we reached middle school, the literature read started to wash away the female perspectives


we were exposed to in elementary we are reading literature written by school (only “To Kill a Mockingbird” white men. was written by a woman and had a In my AP English Language main character who was a girl). And, and Composition class last year, now, as a high school senior, I look we did a short but telling activity. It back on the amazing English classes began by having each table group I’ve had and list the books realize none of the read in English If you see someone books I studied trip over something classes, from at SDA were by or even nothing, it’s with elementary a female author. probably me. school to high And “Romeo and school. The list Juliet,” a play writMallika Seshadri generated was ten in the 16th fairly long, until century, is the we were asked to only work I anadenote the works lyzed in class that we read that has a strong willed were not written female protagonist, who is accompaby a white man. Unsurprisingly, the nied by a male love interest. list shrank. By the end, I found that It seems like the further I delve not only were the voices of girls and into my education, the less diverse women marginalized in our required the main characters are and the more readings, but every single novel I

have read in class, going back to elementary school, was written by a white author. While the works of literature we have been exposed to in high school are masterpieces and ignite eye opening discussions about issues including racism and sexism, we are missing out on hearing the voices and perspectives of authors who are not white men. The levels of awareness brought by reading works by a diverse group of authors is critical in today’s political climate, where racial tension is escalating, understanding of other cultures is dissipating, and women are fearing losing their rights. One could argue the white male perspectives highlighted in the literature we read at school does not prevent students from studying other works bringing forth more diverse views on their own time. But,

at school, we are fortunate to have this forum for discussions led by the phenomenal teachers in SDA’s English department. All students should be able to take advantage of this and become understanding of different perspectives, especially since few would be inclined to pleasure read books that bring up these viewpoints. Each year, more children’s books are published and more children’s films are made to depict strong willed female characters, including ones who are not white. If relatively conservative corporations such as Disney can maintain a balance between their classic characters and new additions portraying different demographics, than our schools can too. It’s time that our curriculum is diversified, so girls and students of different backgrounds can feel their perspectives are represented.



Sexual harassment: a necessary discussion

Recent well-publicized allegations against celebrities and powerfull bussiness men, regarding assault, means more people are talking about this serious problem. And, that’s a good thing.


People of all genders and all clothing styles can be victims. Illustration by Emma Toscani

ince the news broke about film from sexual harassment/assault producer Harvey Weinstein’s have talked about their experiences, assault and rape allegations, I incriminating powerfull men like have become more aware of sexual actor Kevin Spacey and politician Jeff harassment and assault, something Hoover among others. we all should be paying attention Many of the victims who spoke to, especially in today’s world. The out about the attacks described Weinstein scandal that finally came thinking about how they could’ve out shows the blown it out of shame behind proportion, always I’m sorry that you feel that way. the attacks, giving the attacker causing victhe benefit of the -Taina Millsap tims to feel as doubt. The most though they’d important part to be worse sayrecognize now is ing something the misconception than keeping that the victims quiet. are sometimes The scanexaggerating when dal includes in reality anything more than 60 women who claim to that happens without consent is no have been sexually harassed or raped exaggeration; it is a crime. by Weinstein, all of it kept a secret The attention that has been or ignored due to his power over the brought to the issue these past few cinematographic world. Many of the weeks influenced many around the women who have spoken out have world to share their experiences and been removed from his projects and bring awareness to the similar events from others who were persuaded by that have happened in their own Weinstein. lives. On Twitter, the hashtag #metoo Ever since Weinstein’s victims trended number 1 nationwide as shared, others who have suffered girls and boys supported each other

and showed that the problem is a lot bigger than we all thought. The phrase “me too” was initially created by Tarana Burke a social activist, as part of a campaign to promote “empowerment through empathy” among women of color who have experienced sexual abuse, particularly within underprivileged communities. Since then, it has grown to a more general term including all people, from different genders to different colors who have suffered something along the lines of sexual harassment. The hashtag has provided many with the outlet needed to share their stories to hopefully bring something good out of the experiences of the many that have suffered: awareness to a problem that has long been hidden under wraps and is now more than even being released for the public to see. The magnitude of the issues have been apparent for a long time, but it’s time to recognize even the smallest of assaults as something serious, as something that no one should have to go through and then be blamed for.

Girls: drop the cookies, pick up the popcorn When I was a Girl Scout, it was all about cooking and friendship. But the BSA’s decision to include girls in Boy Scouts could have changed my experience.


here already is a Girl Scouts! “camping,” which was of flowers that Wow, who knew… practically devoured the curlicue On Oct.11., which is letters, we had a sleepover in a National Girls Day, the Boy Scouts backyard. of America announced they would On the other hand, my older start welcoming female Cub Scouts. brother, who is extremely close to They will also allow older earning his Eagle ranking, has had girls to start working toward the the opportunity to go on multiple prestigious Eagle ranking in 2018. ‘Unit Backpacks’ with his Boy Scouts This was definitely a good troop. decision to The opinion make. that girls should be C is for cookie, cookie is for This is excluded from Boy me mainly because Scouts perpetuates it will bring the harmful opinion -Amerila Kaiser boys and girls that society should together to separate girls and do the same boys because they activities and should do different hopefully earn activities. the honorable It is no secret Eagle rank. that in Girl Scouts, However, some people are troop members are doing more having a problem with the Boy indoor activities and going to camps Scouts of America’s decision to with cabins. include girls in their organization But, boys are learning survival/ because there is already a Girl outdoor skills and pitching their own Scouts. tents. But, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts The activities in Boy Scouts are do very different things. much more outdoorsy and are much I used to be a Girl Scout. more likely to build character. To earn a patch that said And, many girls would find


these excusions more appealing than typical Girl Scouts activities. Especially at a young age, it is important to mix boys and girls together. In doing so, they can learn to live in this world together! The Boy Scouts of America’s move to include girls brings us one step closer to equality between the sexes. This change will also give young boys an opportunity to see that girls can do the same things as them. Hopefully, as a result, boy scouts will be encouraged to see girls as equals. A big incentive for girls to do Boys Scouts is to set a goal and achieve the prestigious Eagle Scout rank. Although the Gold Award is a big achievement you can reach as a Girl Scout, the Eagle rank is far more well-recognized and respected. The Boy Scouts of America’s decision to include girls will hopefully bring this country one step closer to gender equality. It will also encourage younger generations to see gender as just one small factor in being human.

A GIRL IN Boy Scouts. Illustration by Emma Toscani.

NOV 2017


Women are STEAMing up Girls should feel empowered to pursue careers in the STEAM field.


hen I could not fall asleep one night, I did not scroll through my phone, I did not read a book, I did not draw; I did physics. I wondered how to calculate the velocity of a rocket after an infinite amount of mass particles were shot out from an engine. Proud of my work, I showed physics teacher Ryan Cardenas. He took my paper, scanned my work, and called me a weirdo (I will take that as a compliScience is cool! Jenna Weinhofer

ment). Little did I know that the equation I derived on my own was Tsiolkovsky’s rocket equation. Indeed, I was happy that I derived the equation correctly, but I was even happier to have a deep understanding of physics. My smile could not be tamed. My inner nerd was bursting at the seams. I am proud to call myself a weirdo; however, many girls feel like they cannot. I can only see myself in a STEAM—science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics — career. From a young age, my parents have encouraged me to join science camps and to create interesting concoctions in the kitchen. I have received the opportunity to explore STEAM fields, but other girls do not get the same. Girls’ young, growing brains learn that being smart is a man’s job and, therefore, they cannot do it. Parents and teachers have a huge influence on how kids think, feel, and grow. To encourage girls, more STEAM activities and camps should be offered in grade school, and teachers should encourage

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL GIRLS competed in a robotics competition at SDA. Photo courtesy of Sarah Parkes. girls to experiment and build their curiosity. By doing so, girls can learn to become determined. They will take on challenges and learn from their mistakes. They will step outside the box and not be afraid to explore. The innovation they will manifest can benefit many. Women have different viewpoints, ideas, and insights than men, leading to problem solving.

For instance, women can make the customer base diverse and can make the revenue increase. The confidence girls in STEAM have found for themselves can encourage other girls to delve into STEAM disciplines, allowing more girls can reach their highest potential. If girls do not decide to go in STEAM, they can still learn how to perform experiments, think ana-

lytically, and read data. These skills will help them in school and in the workplace. I know, for the time being, STEAM fields will be predominantly male. Moving forward, I know I will not be perceived as equally intelligent to my male counterparts. But, I want to use my minority status to erase biases against women in STEAM careers. I want every woman in STEAM

to know that they are role models for generations to come. We are getting our hands dirty for their future. In times of doubt and hardships, know you are doing it for young girls. Finally, to any girl out there, do not let stereotypes define you. If you want to pursue STEAM, make sure it happens. Do not let anyone’s opinion tell you what you can and cannot do. Believe in change. Believe the happiness. Believe in yourself.

B-b-but he’s a Trump supporter! People should not be defined by the candidate that they supported.


uring the walkout held at SDA following the 2016 election, I sat in the sun, listening to people voice their opinions. I felt empowered. The conversation was about more than just hate. It was the true catalyst for this bickering. I remember the looks of animosity my friend got when he wore a “Make America Great Again” hat to school. This feud is reaching a fever pitch and it needs


to stop. Why do we hate someone who has a different perspective from us? Why are there dividing lines between people? The right versus the left; the good versus the evil; the right versus the wrong. I understand if you hate President Donald Trump or you hate Secetary of State Hillary Clinton, but why do you despise the people who voted for them?

So what if they voted one way or the other? It’s their belief, and you shouldn’t hastily disassociate yourself from them. Instead, you should have a healthy conversation not clouded by preconceptions and hatred. Talk about healthcare, racial discrimination, college affordability, international relations, or anything else. Be civilized. Don’t dismiss someone that

America is great beacuse America is good. Wow. -Emma Toscani

leans the opposite direction from you. It’s hard to understand why

you believe something if you can’t hold a conversation outside of an echo chamber like tumblr or reddit. It is nice to be with like-minded individuals, but understanding why someone has different beliefs than you can help communicate between your fellow students. Understanding each other can help you learn better, build stronger relationships, and overall succeed in life. And succeeding in life is the ultimate goal, right?



Does it have to be GAY best friend? A colorful insight on friendship in the queer community and what needs to change.


n a society full of Kevin Kellers and Christians from “Clueless,” our generation is bombarded with an unlikely phenomenon: the gay best friend. Society has been conditioned Ugh as if! to see gay culture as flamboyant -Drew Atkins and eccentric, which is partially true. But, it also perpetuates the idea that gay culture can be thoughtlessly accessorized the same as a brand new purse. Everyone wants a new guy friend to talk about boys and pick outfits with. Simply put, it’s become a sociocultural trend to have your own femme friend. And though I’d love to do the things listed above, I don’t want to be labeled as a gay best friend. I am queer and thriving, but most importantly I don’t want to be put into a box because of that. Being queer and constantly questioning sexuality is hard enough, and it doesn’t help that people take advantage of this. If you didn’t care that I swing both ways, why do you keep asking me? More and more I feel people like me because of my sexual orientation, and less because

of who I am. Sexuality is an enormous part of one’s identity, but it doesn’t have to be your entire being. I just want people to know me as myself before wanting to know about my sexuality. Just because I’m queer doesn’t mean I’m going to throw myself at you and demand we go shopping. It’s a stereotype, and one that should be broken down. Regardless of whether you care about my sexuality or not, I hold no animosity towards you. I am frustrated with how society objectifies the LGBTQ+ community, and I understand change isn’t possible without education. For anyone unsure how to handle a newly out friend, or a classmate you have a suspicion about, try to facilitate a conversation with them. Appreciating someone as a person before a sexualized-accessory is far more important than following a trend. Coming out is different for everyone, but if we could change how we react to our LGBTQ+ community, I don’t have to be your gay best friend. I can just be your best friend.

Illustrated by Drew Atkins

Smoke and mirrors: the marijuana stigma Marijuana is less dangerous than other legalized substances but is unfairly stigmatized.


ecreational marijuana was voters decide might seem like a good legalized on Nov 8, 2016; thing if you’re pro-legalization, there 57.13 percent of California are still issues with the stigmas surcitizens voted in favor of Prop 64. In rounding it. San Diego, those numbers were even While I understand the higher. An article published in the Encinitas City Countil’s desire to San Diego Union Tribune compares avoid taking a stand on the issue, I the various municipalities in San would prefer they made a decision, Diego County as it pertains to the regardless of the outcome. My issue voter breakdown. is not even with Unsurprisingly, marijuana itself, When I was your age, television Encinitas was which I believe found at the top was called books. should be reguof that list with lated similarly to -Tom Amoroso 65.2 percent our other legal, of its citizens substantially voting in favor more dangerof legalization. ous substances. If my generation My issue is that had voted, the stigmas still number would’ve exist, making it been even higher. difficult to hold a serious discussion With that in mind, on Oct. 18, pertaining to the substance. A the Encinitas city council voted to al- 2017 poll, conducted by The Marist low its citizens to decide if commerInstitute for Public Opinion found cial marijuana operations will utilize that 52 percent of American adults the city’s designated agricultural have admitted to trying marijuana. areas, and they will place an initiative The poll also found that most Amerion the 2018 ballot. While letting cans find regular tobacco and alcohol


use to be much more dangerous than marijuana (76 percent vs 18 percent). So, why is marijuana use still considered reprehensible? Well that comes down to stigma. We need to shake preconceived notions and have a discussion rooted in logic, not in an outdated belief or emotion. Prior to being hired at any government sanctioned job, you are required to take a drug test. Even if you are prescribed marijuana (as medicine) from your doctor, if you test positive, you will not be hired. Yet, if you’re taking opioid painkillers, you are not held to the same standard. Somehow, a drug that has not killed anyone is considered worse than a drug that killed 34,000 people last year. Most multiple panel test don’t even test for fentanyl and other synthetic opioids. Understandably, marijuana and opiates are both controlled substances, so let’s look at the legal alternatives. According to the CDC, alcohol accounts for 88,000 deaths per year, not including drunk driv-

ing accidents. Tobacco accounts for 480,000 deaths per year, including secondhand smoke, which is responsible for 41,000 of those deaths. You can walk down the street to any gas station and purchase both alcohol and tobacco, but marijuana can’t even be grown commercially in our city limits and still remains illegal on the federal level. If you talk to most opponents of marijuana’s legalization, one of the main arguments is they don’t want their kids growing up around the drug, yet they seem just fine with exposing their children to government sanctioned, legal substances. Kids learn early on about dad’s cigar collection and mom’s wine cabinet; they see advertisements for both products on TV and YouTube videos. The DEA classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance; that being: “High potential for abuse and no currently accepted medical value.” Yet it is legal for medical use in 29 states and DC; it is legal for recreational use in eight states. As adolescents, we are more inclined to try substances due to the

way we evaluate risk and reward. It is important to do our own research and be cognizant rather than ignorant. Read up on the cases where marijuana has been seriously beneficial in the field of medicine; read up on the history of the illegality of the substance, and read up on how our government schedules substances. Ask yourself, if nobody has ever died directly from a marijuana overdose, than why is it scheduled the same as heroin? Examples of (schedule 2 and 3) drugs that the DEA considers less dangerous than marijuana include: cocaine, meth, oxycodone, Fentanyl, Valium, Vicodin, anabolic steroids, Ketamine, and PCP. While I don’t condone underage drug use, deferring or ignoring the topic to avoid exposing it to kids is much more dangerous as they’ll be ill-equipped to deal with the realities of life. We are going to be exposed to drugs, especially in this day and age; avoidance and deferral are no longer feasible strategies. Instead, I want to encourage everybody to talk openly, as there is no age limit on being

NOV 2017



Sophmore Jacob Morilak singing during his performance.


low a kiss, and take a bow. This is what the audience sees as the actors walk off stage having done their job and done it well. What the audience doesn’t see is the hours of work put into these productions so they run smoothly. A lot of that unseen work, before and during the show, is done by the people behind the scenes. In SDA’s most recent musical “Calvin Berger,” the cast members of the show relied heavily on the backbone of the theatre department: the crew. The crew isn’t meant to be seen or heard while a production is taking place. They are there to do their job as efficiently as possible and to ensure that the show runs smoothly with no hiccups in their individual departments. Junior Ari Steffens is the lighting designer of the “Calvin Berger” production. “When an actor does a good job it’s very obvious, and our actors do great jobs. But when the lighting is good is when you don’t notice it,” Steffens said.“If I do a good job then they ignore the lights because they forget they are in a theatre and they are in the story. So if I do a good job, then no one recognizes my job.” His task is to establish the atmosphere in the show. Even though the audience doesn’t typically take note of this, it adds to the


overall effect that the show has on the audience, creating a memorable performance. Stephanie Siers, the teacher of the theatre department, said, “I think at SDA we are kind of known for our tech, and our technicians.” Siers’ goal

“Everyone understands how hard it is to be a technician and how fun it is. Everyone respects each other really equally and that’s what’s amazing.” -Rachel Kaplan is to have every student appreciate each other and what they bring to a show, as well as the process of each production. “Every closing night of our production we take the time to have all the performers recognize each of the technicians and share a little bit about what specifically they did and how it impacted the produc-

If all the world’s a stage, then the crew must be Gods... By Ava Jakubowski

Junior Charis Hagen, sophmore Grace Warrick and senior Natalie Paxton pose for a behind the scenes picture. Photos By Patrick Hall

tion so they get that recognition in front of a public audience.” Even though the crew isn’t seen by the audience, it doesn’t diminish their importance or how their work affects the show. “For any tech job or any position that you have it’s really important you do your best and try to revolutionize whatever you are doing to make it as good as possible,” senior Rachel Kaplan, publicity manager, said. “Everyone takes it really professionally and I really appreciate that,” Steffens said. Many of those that work in the theatre put their full amount of effort into each job. “Everyone is trying their best and you can respect that.” The cast understands the crew’s importance because of the way in which SDA’s theatre department is set up. Kaplan said, “At SDA every single actor is required to do tech. So everyone understands how difficult every single tech job is.” All the cast members can recognize what each crew member does and brings to each production and are helded in high esteem in the theatre community. Steffens started out as an actor for the SDA theatre department but has since found his passion in lighting. “A lot of people don’t take theatre because they don’t want to act,

but you don’t have to act to be a part of theatre,” Steffens said. “There are a million jobs in tech and I’m sure everyone will find a job that they enjoy no matter what.” Since joining the theatre department, he has been a part of eight productions. “I accidentally stumbled upon theatre,” senior Ava Lillie said. “I was put into Acting I, which wasn’t even one of my top five choices as an elective. And I hate acting.” Lilie has found a family in theatre and in the Thespian’s club. She has been in 12 SDA productions, all behind the scenes. She was stage manager for the “Calvin Berger” show. Junior Colin Gasperoni made his directorial debut during this year’s production of “Calvin Berger.” “I was interested in being a student director because I have acted before and have been on crews but I’ve never had a leadership position,” Gasperoni said. As an actor, Gasperoni was able to help the actors of the show through their warm ups to develop their characters to the best of their ability. “I am the conductor of the show,” Lillie said in regards to her position as stage manager. “I control the whole show. I am like the puppet master.” Without Lillie’s part in the show, nothing would happen. The lights wouldn’t go on, the actors

wouldn’t come out and the audience would be watching an empty stage. Although they may not get the applause, the students behind the scenes still feel that their jobs are important. Steffens said, “I would say [lights designer is] the most complicated job in the theatre. I wouldn’t say it was the most difficult, but it’s definitely the most complicated.” Steffens has held this job for two years now, and hopes to make it his profession later in life. In regards to her role as publicity manager, Kaplan said, “I realized that I really just needed to do publicity because I feel like a lot of times there isn’t a lot going on with publicity and I really wanted to make it a really big area for tech.” She has been a part of 18 productions and has tried almost every tech job offered here at SDA. Recently, Kaplan even created an SDA theatre youtube channel that will highlight each production. Lillie said, “I feel like in tech it’s really humbling to put so much work into the show.” The crew members are an essential part of achieving the desired final product of the show.



new building, new thoughts T

he new math and science building is very young, but already teachers and students have begun to call it a part of their home at SDA, some with open arms, other less so. The population of the school that experienced a senior court is dwindling and soon the new building will become a presence that was always there. Sophomore Jude Irons is satisfied with the new complex, saying “they’re the only new things in the school, they’re right in the middle and they’re convenient to walk through.” Math teacher Gail Lee is less enthusiastic on the result of the complex.


The diverse opinions on SDA’s first two story complex. Story and photos by Patrick Hall

Left, the hallway connecting the courtyard to the interior classes is a frequent traffic jam between periods. Bottom left, Darlene Blanchard’s view from her math class is frequently said to be the best in the building. Photo by Darlene Blanchard. Center, the stairway near to the library is typically congested as it is the primary choice of commute for most students with classes on the second floor. Upper right, the courtyard concrete benches are a nice hang out spot for students at lunch. Bottom right, almost every student at SDA now has a class in the new math and science complex or at least commute through it to get to another class.

“I’m ashamed the tax payers had to pay for this mess,” Lee said, while adding she’s especially irritated by the echoing in the concrete halls. But not all of the older generation is critical towards the new classes. Senior Eduardo Hernandez, who had a class in the senior court before it was demolished, found qualities in both to admire. “I loved senior court because there was a bunch of space, but this building is more useful. It’s more practical. It makes more sense to use the entire room than to have empty space.”





NOV 2017



A riveting narrative that chronicles the battle that is Thanksgiving dinner. By Simmone Stearn and Sylvia Young.


hen we first started this article, we didn’t know what we were doing. So, we decided to do something creative: make Thanksgiving dinner with cultural twists We found recipes, brainstormed, and even asked Culinary Arts teacher Scott Huntley for advice. Then, we started cooking. There were so many who doubted us, and you know what? They were completely right. Below are the amazing dishes we prepared. Dish 1: Turkey Kiev with cornbreading -- a Thanksgiving twist on the classic Russian dish, chicken kiev Dish 2: Butternut squash bowls filled with Jasmine rice, sweet potato, and sweet and sour cranberry sauce -- a contemporary take on Thanksgiving gourds Dish 3: Classic mashed potatoes topped with coconut masala -- a spiced up version of a Thanksgiving classic Dish 4: Pumpkin pie empanadas: a Thanksgiving version of the Latin American pastry We started out with the Turkey Kiev. This is when the issues began. This was the breeze, of sorts, that signaled the coming of the white squall. It was, without question, the most terrifying moment of our pathetic little lives. We smashed the turkey cutlets, the way one smashes one’s finger in a door jam. It’s painful. This was the exact moment we realized that nothing in life matters and we’re all devoid of meaning. We stuck the barely frozen butter into the shameful turkey rolls and soaked them in eggs and a pitiful excuse for cornbread crumbs. We then, according to the “directions,” stuck it in the fridge for two hours. While the turkey rolls (if you could call them that) were turning into beautiful butterflies in the fridge, the kitchen was ablaze with the furious hands of amateur cooks. We grabbed a bread knife, which is known for being used with bread, and thrust it deep into the meat of a butternut squash. Classic. After our failed attempt, the only logical next step was to stab it with

PROFESSIONAL CHEFS SYLVIA Young and Simmone Stearn pose with their pots. Photo illustration by Patrick Hall

as many knives as possible, some of which broke. Then, we baked those depressing squash halves like there was no tomorrow. Next, we rolled up our sleeves for the real work: cutting onions for the burning curry. Tears streamed out of our eyes and watered our cutting board. It was as if our eyes had been stung by 5000 onion-bees and then set ablaze with 5000 gallons of onion-lighter fluid.We think we’re beginning to understand what Thanksgiving is all about: onion-bees. Our Yukon Gold potatoes, the true gold that was discovered in 1849, were boiled and then smashed. Lacking a potato masher, we opted for a bent spatula and a fork.. As soon as we started, we realized why the potato masher was invented -- it’s

really hard to mash potatoes. What else would we have done next except scoop the potato slop into balls with an icecream scooper. After doing so and plopping them onto a plate, we dusted it, as a maid dusts furniture, with paprika, you know, that one red spice. With tattered oven mitts, most likely taken from a needy homeless man, we grabbed the tray, as one does. Man, did those butternut squashes look golden -- more so than the Yukons. We scooped out the squash’s steaming flesh to carve a bowl, as one does. We then filled it with the best Jasmine rice ever, stuck some candied pecans on it, and drizzled on some cranberry sauce. For the looks, we grabbed a sweet potato, which looked much like a dead fish drowning in sorrow, and stuck it on the side. Flashy, we know. We began on the pumpkin empanadas. This is where the white squall turned into a category five hurricane. Pie dough, we thought, was a loose term. So, instead, we used crescent dough, the kind that doesn’t make pies. It was also frozen, which made it rather difficult to knead. We smacked it against the counter several times to soften it up and, after our hard work, it was still rather difficult to knead. Nevertheless, we persisted and somehow got those icy scalawags to form small, flat circles. Inside, we inserted a mixture of pumpkin and sugar. After putting them on the baking sheet, they looked very similar to garbage. What can I say, success is our middle name. We returned to the white whale: the Kiev. We tried to fry it, but it turns out that’s actually hard to do and you’re not supposed to burn the entire thing. Not to worry, it could still get better in the oven...or so we thought. We pulled out our disappointing turkeys and cut them open, only to find raw meat (the kind that kills you). So, needless to say, our cooking adventure was a failure. But, if you actually think about it, we all had fun and learned a lot about ourselves and each other. We learned how much we suck at cooking.


The Encinitas Donut House, in walking distance of SDA, now offers boba. By Nadia Ballard


very day, whether it be hour or regular lunch, students drive off to get their boba fix at Moonlight Yogurt and Ice. But what about the students who can’t drive or get a ride? While SDA is blessed to have a boba place readily accessible by car, walking or running to Moonlight is simply too far if students want to get to class on time after lunch. For years such students have suffered and gone boba-less; however, there is a new hope for students that have, for so long, lived in a dark boba deprived world. Encinitas Donut House located by El Nopalito and 7/11, a short 10 minute walk from SDA, started offering boba in addition to donuts in the middle of October. While boba is a popular drink it's not the most common treat to find. There used to be a pretty good boba kiosk at The Shoppes at Carlsbad mall, but not only was it too far away to justify repeated habitual trips, once the mall began to undergo construction the kiosk sadly shut down- they used have a little TV that played “Zootopia” that you could watch while you waited, it was a shame! Boba at the Encinitas Donut House is not only a gift for boba thirsty students at SDA, it also increases the amount of boba readily available for anyone to have. According to senior Remi Robertson, boba is a passion and she wishes that there were more boba places around, “it's a good idea having a place closer to school so people can get boba and it's nice to see more places sell it.” While the idea of more boba is always an enticing thought, it can be done wrong and nothing is worse than disappointing boba.


Boba is a delicacy and can be hard to get right. The boba pearls themselves can be to soft and mush into one big unsavory ball of goop, or be so hard that it's more like you’re crunching the pearls rather than chewing them. The donut shop stepped up to the challenge however, and produced a drink that could even compare to that of Moonlight. According to the owners of the shop “We started selling boba because that's what people wanted, and it's been successful because the kids like it.” The donut shop not only has a wide variety of flavors, ranging from your typical thai or milk tea to fruity flavors like mango or coconut. At four dollars for a 16 ounce cup, it’s a pretty good deal and basically the same if not cheaper than Moonlight. Boba can cost a pretty penny, and nothing is worse than disappointing boba that you dropped six dollars for (I’m looking at you Tapioca Express). For being new to the game, The Encinitas Donut House has truly impressed students with their boba.“I love boba and the donut place is great because they got their boba right and it's not crazy expensive. It's great that it's just walking distance away because now my third period teacher doesn't hate me for always being late,” said senior Magdely Benitez. Another notable characteristic of the boba at the donut shop is the whipped cream. Not every boba place will add whipped cream and it’s not something you specifically order, it’s really just up to however is making the boba. Some boba places have the kinds of the lids on their drinks that are just a sheet of

SDA STUDENTS LINE up for boba during lunch. Photo by Nadia Ballard

plastic with physically no room for whipped cream and while it’s a lot of fun to violently stab your straw through the plastic, whipped cream is more fun and delicious. The fact that the donut shop adds whipped cream to their boba just makes you feel all the more loved and cared for. All in all, The Encinitas Donut House has upped their game and have truly done a community service by offering good quality boba for a fair price. Now if Moonlight cafe is too crowded and you’re really craving boba, you can pop into the donut shop and still walk into class holding your boba, on time.



MURAL PROPOSALS BY students from Art Leadership. Photo courtesy of Visual Arts.

What warrants art on the new building? Art on the new math and science building has been delayed due to legalities, and debate among teachers regarding approval. By Taylor Gates


ne of these buildings is not like the others. At the heart of SDA’s campus lies the new math and science building, and for many art students a blank canvas. There has been much debate whether or not art will go on the new building, and many are curious as to what is preventing the progress of these projects. It has been a topic at the most recent student forum as well as the new student congressional session. The usual process of approval for murals starts with the student making a proposal with art teacher Jeremy Wright. It then gets staff input at the staff department chair meeting. At the end it goes back to administration, and with approval the project starts. However, the art department is working to change it so the student input is heard. It was recently decided at the student congressional session that students will vote using Google forms in their homerooms. Then at the next congressional session their representative will vote for the homeroom. Putting art on the new building


won’t be possible, legally, until next fall at the earliest. According to Principal Adam Camacho, the building is not yet released from the construction company. After there will be a warranty that lasts 12 months. This means students will not be able to paint on it for that entire amount of time. Teacher approval seems to be the main issue. Teachers from both sides of the spectrum have drawn similar conclusions. The only difference is the amount of time the art should be up. “Right now, with the concrete floors and the white walls, I kind of feel like it’s an abandoned hospital, and it needs something aside from the echoing we hear,” math teacher Paul Brice said. “We need color.” Some teachers feel that removable art on the new building would be a fair compromise. “I would like art to go up, but not permanently,” PE teacher Deb Abrahamson said. “It should be able to go up and come down.” “I think visual arts is important in every high school not just SDA. I don’t think it’s any different here

from any other high schools that I’ve taught at … We’ve had an old building and been able to paint on the walls since those were coming down. Now, they’re putting up permanents,” she said. Wright, the advisor of all the mural projects, said, the building feels unfinished since they did not take design into account. “When we see a blank building we feel like we are being muted,” he said. “I think SDA has a language. There is a certain flavor about our school, and I think that’s what students want to see on the new building.” In the meantime, Art Leadership, a class dedicated to putting up murals, is working on finding ways to put up temporary pieces that wouldn’t affect the condition of the building. Senior Sarah Willes is currently working on a skateboard sculpture aimed to go up on the new building. She is painting the decks of skateboards and putting them together with metal bars. Creating this piece has meant a lot for her because she has wanted to do a mural since her freshman year. “I think [art] is how we initiate

[the new building] into SDA. It’s new, yes, and we should keep it fresh. However, when I walk through it, it is in stark contrast to the rest of SDA,” Willes said. “Sure, it feels like a high school, but it doesn’t feel like my high school.” Senior Oli Kaminski is working on several big projects for art leadership, one of which is a mural collaboration with senior Emma Toscani designed to go on the new building. In their proposal they described it as “a composition of color and line in the shape of wavelength-like pulsations that stretch across the span of a side of a building and create movement in the hallway.” Kaminski said, “[Art] is an integral part of SDA culture, and it’s a way for students to leave their literal mark on the walls of the school… It’s a physical expression of SDA’s personality.” Although the warranty issue means a delay, skepticism from teachers is another factor. This resistance is disheartening for many of the art leadership students who have been working diligently on their

projects. “I really want to give back to the school. While I understand to an extent what is going on underneath, it upsets me that people around this subject have gotten very guarded. And the issue that needs to be resolved is how to make everyone happy and cooperative and that is very hard to do,” said Willes. “The lack of progress is certainly disheartening and a bit defeating if I’m being completely honest. However that being said, these difficulties give us the opportunity to think critically about our situation and give us new ways to attempt to solve this,” Kaminski said. “I’m excited to see where everything goes and I’m hopeful that we can try to figure out a way to add our touch to the school.” Most students seem to share a positive opinion along the same lines as senior Alyssa Geffen. Geffen said, “SDA’s students that paint all over these walls is what gives our campus color and life. And, I think the new building should exhibit that, and integrate same same theme and atmosphere.”

NOV 2017


distinct styles

Students can define their individuality through clothing. Story and photos by Taylor Rudman and Nohemia Rosales


enior Vanessa Machin has a unique cultivation of styles, each of which represent her artistic personality and ability. Machin describes her look as, “a combination of a lot of different styles” each derived from vintage clothing. She likes to mix the different eras and gets inspiration from her surroundings. “I’m constantly inspired by everything pretty much, like colors used and I always try to work in new and interesting stuff,” Machin said. Machin often features pieces such as “pieces that kinda stand out and also sorta goes with stuff that I already own. I get a lot of floral themes...I kind of like prints a interesting prints, textures...textures are cool.” She further personalizes her style and articles of clothing by adding little details such as beads and fur. “Sometimes I buy ribbons and stuff, and sew them into things. A little piece of fur, it’s super easy and pretty fun way to personalize my stuff,” Machin said. Some of her fashion idols include Jackie Burkhart from “That ‘70s Show,” and different eras such as the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s. Her main sources for the clothing are different thrift stores/ resale shops, and Depop, which is an app where independent sellers can post and buy clothes. Her clothing style, “really comes down to confidence a lot of the time. I always kinda knew that I liked certain things, but I wasn’t necessarily comfortable enough to try them out...I don’t care as much about what other people think [anymore]. I just experiment and I might look ridiculous.” -N.R.



reshman Elijah Anderson has found himself at home at SDA, a place where his funky style can thrive. He said, “It’s kind of a place to try new things, so a lot people will just be used to your clothes if you are wearing something wacky.” Although the accepting atmosphere at SDA is lovely, Anderson sees it more as a nice bonus and would dress the same way at any school. He feels that his style is a large part of who he is, and would not change that regardless of any teasing or ridicule. “I mean, I feel like I’m a unique person,” Anderson said. “I just say what I want to say, do what I want to do, and wear what I want to wear.” Finding clothes that fit his personality often takes quite a bit of effort. Anderson finds most of his clothes online after seeing something he likes in public and seeking it out. Some of his searches take up to a month. “It takes a while to find the actual quality piece,” he said. Although Anderson does find inspiration in pop culture, like ASAP Rocky, he often just goes by intuition. He said, “I just dress in clothes that I think, personally, look cool.” What “looks cool” doesn’t have to adhere to any sort of structure, and his style is often defined by its androgynous touch. “A lot of the clothes I buy are unisex, so you can style it if you are a boy or a girl. You just have to wear it kind of differently,” Anderson said. “Sometimes, a lot of girls like my clothes more than the boys because I wear a lot of girly colors and stuff.” Anderson does not let others’ opinions influence him in his fashion choices. Although verbal abuse isn’t a huge problem at SDA, he does face ridicule from time to time. This doesn’t make a difference to him: “I think it’s cool, so I’ll wear it and wear it proudly.” -T.R.


unior Hannah Weber’s style consists of bright colors and vintage styles, mainly deriving from the ‘60s and ‘80s. She describes her styles as “ girly, but at the same time I feel like I can take on a couple of different styles.” Weber often wears and likes wearing jumpsuits, one-piece outfits, matching sets, and hats. She gets inspiration for her clothing from different Pinterest boards and enjoys the fashion of celebrities such as Kate Moss, Marilyn Monroe and Twiggy. Weber often gets her clothes at San Francisco thrift shops. “I go a little crazy there,” Weber said. Still, there are some more generic stores such as Urban Outfitters that carries clothing she enjoys. Weber has a true passion for fashion. “The more and more I get comfortable with my sense of self the more I get into it. I love putting outfits together, just even going on Pinterest or any website and looking at old vintage 60s stuff, there are certain blogs that I look at. I do read fashion blogs. It’s a pretty big interest of mine, in general.” Weber said. Fashion is a way for her to express herself and has always been a point of interest for her, “I do it for myself, when I dress,” she said. “It’s just something I’ve always really cared about. For myself. I think about it a lot, just fashion in general. I am always paying attention to other people too.” -N.R.


unior Bridget Brightfield uses style as an instrument to express her individuality. “I just don’t like dressing like other people,” she said. “I make a lot of stuff and I find a lot of stuff at thrift stores that are just one-of-a-kind pieces.” When Brightfield can’t find what she is looking for, she will make it herself. “I’ll have a vision, and I’m like, ‘You can’t buy that anywhere! I guess I have to make it!’” Brightfield flirted with clothing construction in fourth grade, then took a break to pick it back up in eighth grade, when she became seriously invested in her unique sense of style. Although Brightfield follows trends on occasion, she is not especially fond of them. “Trends aren’t style, style lives forever. Style is timeless. But trends, they die,” she said. Brightfield knows that having an impressive style and a fat wallet can be mutually exclusive. “Presales. Thrift shops. I don’t buy anything full price. Nothing full price,” she said. With a grin, she pointed down at her Adidas sneakers: “These aren’t even real.” Her affair with anti-normative fashion started in eighth grade, then strengthened in her freshman year at CCA and flourished when she transferred to SDA as a sophomore. “I started dressing super weird, like fur coats just for fun. Like, we’re all gonna die. No one’s going to remember if I wore a fur coat or not.” Finding her sense of self and sense of style wasn’t just the flip of a switch. Although there were some fashion stages in middle school that Brightfield is not especially proud of, she believes that every outfit, unfortunate or not, is part of the process. “I feel like there was a place and time that that was necessary. That I needed to wear a fur coat just to get it out. The Heelys, necessary. All of it,” she said. -T.R.






Thanksgiving talking points. By Sylvia Young and Taylor Rudman


hanksgiving is a beautiful time of year. A time in which family comes together and cherishes one another. Family comes from far and wide, and sometimes it is the only time of year they can see one another. This can make things a little, well, awkward. You don’t know these people! Well no need to fear. For you, we have compiled a list of icebreakers that are perfect for Thanksgiving dinner. 1.) Start a conversation about current events. •Last year, Thanksgiving fell right around the time of the presidential elections, so current events were off the table. Now it’s 2017, and everything has totally calmed down. Try seeing what your uncle thinks about DACA, or maybe your Grandma has something to say about Harvey Weinstein! •Abortion, although not necessarily a current event, is always a great thing to talk about. Plus, it will really bring together the Christian and atheist sides of the family. •There's a little bit of a lag between our deadline and when the paper is published, but, [insert Trump’s latest controversial policy]

will be a good discussion topic. 2.) Mock the food. Whoever made it probably spent an awful lot of time and effort, so letting them know that it can be joked about will relieve some of their stress. It is important to recognize what they did for you. Some jokes that work: • Thank God you have a dog, at least someone will enjoy eating the food! • Why couldn’t the president have spared this turkey? • Why didn’t you just order something pre-made from Vons? They do that, you know. 3.) Try and get more comfortable with the guests that you don’t know all that well. • If there are any unfamiliar faces at the table, it is probably because one of your family members has a new, serious “special someone.” Ask your grandparents to try and guess their ethnicity! • Try and catch up with the extended family you don’t get to see very often. When your condescending cousin talks about how brilliant her life at Harvard is in her fake British accent, you can connect with her by sharing your experience get-

ting a solid 2.0 at public school. Also maybe punch her. After all, you go to public school. 4.) When all else fails, question the sanctity of the holiday altogether. • Isn’t the only reason that we celebrate Thanksgiving is to prove to ourselves that we are good, caring people who definitely aren’t narcissists? Aunt Linda, we already know that you are thankful for your health, family, and “this ‘beautiful’ meal in front of you.” We don’t need a holiday for you to tell us. • Every year we pretend to care about the Native Americans who we murdered and have systematically oppressed ever since Columbus’ arrival. Just think. • Bring up how Aunt Jane and Uncle Joe are pretending that they didn’t spend all of last year making racist comments about the Dakota Access Pipeline while showing off their new dream catchers from Forever 21. We all know making conversation can be tough. Just try to remember why Thanksgiving is considered a holiday and not a preview of hell. At least you get to eat.

Dogs are the only ones that are truly thankful. Illustration by Taylor Gates.

EVACUATE THE DANCE FLOOR The truth about the fire alarm at homecoming. By Sienna Riley


A student who attended homecoming submitted this piece, depicting some of the events that took place at homecoming. Illustration by Emma Toscani.


s you all may be aware, the homecoming dance happened late last month, and many recall it as being a smashing hit. However, the events of that night come in bits and pieces, and many are not sure to take them as rumors or as facts. As your designated sleuther, I wanted to get to the bottom of all the confusion and produce the facts for our readers that seek the truth. ASB had designed this year’s homecoming to be “A Galaxy Far Far Away” which essentially translates to Star Wars themed. It featured a replica of a stormtrooper, a pretty sick DJ booth set-up, and of course a conspiracy to overthrow the new administration. The Star Wars themed homecoming dance was actually a clever disguise for an actual Star War to take place in SDA’s very own gymnasium, in an attempt for the Dark Side to overtake the

administration and assimilate the student body into their regime. This was confirmed by junior Regina Phalange, who was behind the fire alarm incident that signified the end of the dance. “I was getting bored at homecoming, so I went to the locker room bathroom with some friends,” Phalange said. “We brought a Ouija board with us, so we decided to see if we could summon Carrie Fisher’s ghost with it.” The students’ wishes were granted, with “Space Mom” herself coming through the board to warn the teens of the events in store for the rest of the night. “It was so bizarre,” sophomore J’timothy Honeyclamps said. “We found out that Space Mom was talking to us, and before we could start asking her questions, the [planchette] started spelling things, and she basically told us that ASB made a deal with Kylo Ren and he promised to pay for all of ASB’s events if they let him crash the dance to take down the new principal. Of

course they agreed to it.” “That’s why the dance tickets were so expensive at the door,” junior Chazdidee Galaway said. The students were told by Carrie Fisher’s ghost that they needed to get everyone out of the gym before the stormtroopers arrived, and what better distraction than SDA’s infamous fire alarm. “No one would even know, because everyone would think someone just set another trashcan on fire and get over it,” Honeyclamps said. Luckily, the plan worked without a hitch, and once all the students were safely evacuated, an Upsilon-class command shuttle touched down in front of the PAC, and an army of stormtroopers led by Kylo Ren invaded the previously packed gymnasium. It was said to be the biggest smackdown in history, and Mr. Camacho held his own, effectively sending Kylo Ren back to where he came from with his broken lightsaber in hand and thoroughly bamboozled.

NOV 2017





pass into the bathroom. I really don’t like gagging, guys; it feels like throwing up. I don’t like throwing up. For my sake, be clean.

Senior Emma Toscani imparts her wisdom What are you thankful for? I am thankful for the gift of being a senior. I am only here because senioritis hasn’t claimed my soul just yet. Like really, guys have you ever like considered what life is like after high school? I can like get an eyebrow piercing. And an apartment. And deep, dark, crippling

A cute fall date idea? Go to a pumpkin patch. Pick up a few pumpkins. Throw them at passersby and run away when you get rolled. But I want to actually date someone so like hmu on my (MySpace works too)?


Why does no one clean up after themselves in the bathroom? Because high school students are pigs. No matter how fit or vegan you are, y’all are nasty. Get your turkey stuffing together and clean up after yourself so I don’t gag every time I carry Norris’s boogie board

How do I stop being so awkward? Ah, the question that Socrates philosophized about so many

moons ago. In reality, trying not to be awkward is quite easy; you just stop existing. Simple as that. Stop showing up to classes, don’t talk to your friends or family anymore, never leave your room, but most of all, stop thinking. If you stop existing awkwardness is null and you may never be troubled by that curse again. Or anything for that matter. What is the forum? A real question that warrants a real answer. It’s a real cool thing to go to voice your opinion. But don’t be the person that steals pizza and dips out.


Get educated. By Lena Mau and Kamryn Romley


here’s so much talk about the culture here at SDA, but does anyone know the history? Long before SDA was SDA, it was a piece of land filled with fertile soil and herds of livestock, with a very desirable view of the ocean. It’s no secret that the city is beautiful, and because of that, it is a top travel destination for visitors.But who were the first people to discover this land that we call home? The answer is the Yanastanian pilgrims. They traveled from their

homeland of Yanastan in the early year of 1602. A little bit of background on the ancient people: They were a very poor people, in much debt to larger surrounding countries, stuck in the middle of modern day Europe. With very little job opportunities, famine, poor leadership, and threats of war and possible invasion from more threatening countries, they needed a stroke of luck. Some of the remaining rich, noble families funded a voyage to the new world,

in hopes of a better life for them and for the people of their country. They funded the company Gumanjiian Co., and set forth on a voyage to what is modern day Encinitas. Everyone knows (or should know) that Encinitas derives from Spanish, meaning “little oaks”. But the Yanastans were not Spanish, so why did the Yanastanian pilgrims name it Encinitas? The answer is because Encinitas wasn’t always called Encinitas. This beautiful town was originally called Ur-dumb. This name derives from the fact

that you, as in you the reader, are actually dumb. This story is fake, and you probably believed it. Encinitas was owned by Mexico until the Americans came and stole it. That’s the story. That’s it. So, this Thanksgiving, give thanks to the white people that decided

that gold and a pretty ocean were more important than respecting and preserving a whole other communtiy of people. Not to mention the Native Americans who had been here since the beginning. Just disrespect them too, it’s fine. Happy Thanksgiving!

Gemini Clap your hands, do alittle shimmy, jump twice, and screech like a chimera. There, according to the stars you are destined to look like an idiot.

Virgo You’re secretly a glowstick. When you stretch and something cracks, that’s not some phenomena of the human anatomy it’s just proof of your secretly glowing on the inside.


Trust the stars to make decisions for you. By Nadia Ballard

Scorpio You have problems, but no friends so instead you have fake conversations in your head where you vent your problems to yourself. Itworks well enough. Sagittarius You are a reincarnation of Britney Spears. She’s not dead or anything, it just that she’s like a cat. She has nine lives and one of those lives is yours.


Capricorn Date someone who’s loyal. Date someone who likes to cuddle. Date someone who’s excited to see you. Date someone who’s furry. Date someone whose ancestor is a more aggressive version of them. Date someone who comes in many different breeds and sizes. Date someone who hasup to 300 million olfactory receptors. Date a dog.

Pisces Don’t ever feel lonely; there are like a billion dolphins excited to meet you and be your friend.

Aquarius You believe that there is too much art about nature and not enough a bout how sliced apples taste better than whole apples.

Taurus A cool life hack is to go to sleep at 8:30, have all your homework done before five, and complete projects a week before they are due. However, you are not cool and you are not hacking your life anytime soon.

Aries Sometimes you feel your heart beating in different parts of your body and despite what you may think it’s not your pulse. It’s actually an inner bomb that’s ticking underneath your skin and counting the seconds until your death.

Cancer Your Instagram is filled with pictures of solitary and moody bird edits, and if it’s not, it will be soon. Leo Don’t trust students who walk around with normal sized backpacks. For all you know they could be carrying a whole swarm of tadpoles.

Libra Balance is an important part of your life, so much so that one of your hobbies is sitting in a dark room and balancing eggs, weighing the difference in their yolks.

NOV 2017


Behind the scenes

With winter sports beginning soon, here’s a look into the people that make SDA’s teams possible. By Sarah LaVake and Ashlyn Haines.

Flag football The tournament brings a diverse range of students together. It deserves attention.

are the tough part of this job. They demand a lot and they’re passionate about certain things.

SCOTT JORDAN, ATHLETIC Director, Photo by Sarah LaVake

Scott Jordan: It is Scott Jordan’s third year as SDA’s athletic director. He makes sure that all of the sports are running smoothly and do not have any problems. He oversees the fall, spring and winter sports and loves coming out to cheer for all of the athletes in each season. When you go to games, what is your favorite part? Watching you athletes, watching the athletes out there, it’s you know the game itself. It’s my favorite part getting out there and seeing you compete. What has been most effective in getting people to games? Nothing. But my goal is to get people there. I did a T-shirt day, but you have that group who comes out to every game and I love them for being there but I only gave out four shirts to people I had never seen before. I had a couple hundred shirts that I wanted to give out. Same with the lunch for people a couple years ago... Once again it was those same people who are always at the games and I’m so happy that they are there but I want to get other people there. What I think needs to happen is for people to go outside their boundaries. They need to find at least two people, maybe in their class, and invite them out to games. That’s my number one thing. You [athletes] all like to play in front of crowds so bring people out. And it’s not just for basketball or boy’s soccer, but something like field hockey. Those are some of my favorite people and I feel so bad for them and I don’t know what to do to get people motivated to get there. Something that was great in my first year was Stang Gang, we had a


MEGAN THOMPSON, ATHLETIC Secretary Photo courtesy of Megan Thompson

spirited class with the [Sippel] triplets. They were out there but since then it’s declined. So if you have ideas, please come my way and help me with that. That’s my big thing, trying to get people out to the games. How has the program changed since you began working here? We’re building the program. We want to be more competitive. We want to establish ourselves as a program to be reckoned with so we’re not just a pushover, which we have been in the past. We want to be something that people somewhat fear. In what ways do you hope the program changes in the coming years? We keep building, we keep being more competitive. I think with the new league next year, which I fought for by making a point to get on the committee to fight for a new league next year, we will be more competitive. I think with this new league we’ll be able to do some really good things and I’m excited about it. The league is Oceanside, El Camino, Rancho Buena Vista, Vista, Sage Creek, and San Dieguito. I feel good about this league, we should have several league champions in this league. People say SDA is not a sports school like Torrey Pines and LCC, how do you view it? We are a sports school but we have many other things too. We are diverse. You know when you think of school’s like LCC and Torrey Pines the first thing that comes to mind is sports. Here we’re lucky. We are sports, we are music, we are art, we are education, academics. So we have more diversity which I think is better. To be known for many things instead of being known for just one. Do you think not having

football changes the culture of sports here? Yes I do. I think that as the school year starts at other schools who have football, it’s exciting and we sort of start at a dead stop. That’s a troublesome thing here, we don’t get a lot of people out at the games. That’s my number one thing if you see me out there. I try, I want people out at the games and I don’t know what to do. As I like to say, Friday night come to a basketball game. It ends at like 8-8:30 then you can go to your parties or go out to dinner. You still have the rest of the night but come support your school. What is your favorite memory from the years you have spent here at SDA? It’s the championships. It’s the girls soccer team going to the championships and state, it’s the boy’s volleyball team going to state, boy’s tennis winning CIF, it’s Jennifer Kerr being awesome, it’s growing girls water polo and seeing that get off the ground. What is your favorite thing about SDA athletics or the school as a whole? I think it’s a great vibe. I was at that other school that wears green and blue and there’s just something missing from that campus which this campus has. Everybody’s working together to make it the best it can be. What is the hardest part of your job? Hardest part of my job is being away from my family. During the fall I was at 37 events, it’s a lot of nights, a lot of time away from my family. But [they] like to be here. My son likes to come, so if I get a chance to take him that’s all the better. What kinds of things do you have to deal with that people would be surprised at? Parents, the parents

Megan Thompson: What does being athletic secretary entail for you on a day to day basis? It’s hard to put into words what I do everyday, because things come up and can’t always plan for the day… In general, I would say the behind the scenes stuff like ordering the buses, making sure the buses are here on time, making sure we have referees, and that everyone’s cleared. Communication, parents, schools, letting people know what’s going on, posting stuff on the bulletin and school calendar, banquets, and issues with facilities. How long have you worked in this position for? This is my seventeenth year. How has the program changed since you began working here? We’re building the program. Teams are growing, we’re becoming more competitive, more CIF championships. People say SDA is not a sports school like Torrey Pines and LCC, how do you view it? [We had a] basketball player two years ago who was a star basketball player and the lead in the school musical. This is just another example of how diverse and great SDA is. Do you think not having football changes the culture of sports here? [I think] if it we had a Friday night lights type of thing, like maybe for basketball, maybe people would show up to more games. When you go to games, what is your favorite part? I like the cheering in the stands, that’s my favorite part. What is your favorite memory from the years you have spent here at SDA? It’s fun watching the team continue on into playoffs and CIF and state. What is your favorite thing about SDA athletics or the school as a whole? I’ve never worked anywhere else to have a comparison, but I just love how the coaches, team parents, us, and everyone just wants to do their best to help the team succeed and everyone really cares. What is the hardest part of your job? I love my job, I have no hard parts. What kinds of things do you have to deal with that people would be surprised at? Trying to get people to turn in their forms on time for athletic clearance.. There are so many people who need to and it makes me anxious. Like getting the word out so people know what they have to do to be able to try out for sports.

The last sports boy. Jack Hauser


he annual flag football tournament, one of the most memorable events among SDA students, took place Nov. 3 on the SDA field. The competition features over 40 teams and 500 students in a single-elimination, 4-hour grind to the top. The win-or-go-home competitive nature that puts students from all kinds of backgrounds against each other makes this sporting event the greatest activity SDA has to offer. It’s better than Comedy Sportz, theater, senior nights, and open mics, as Flag Football is a school wide competition that includes people from every one of those activities. Nowhere else can the community at SDA bond and grow over watching the Japanese National Honors Society play a game of football against the varsity field hockey team. As an athlete myself, sometimes there is a disconnect between these different regions of SDA, and watching everyone take part in a sport that does not have its own team is the perfect place for our competitive spirits to flourish. The past few years, this culmination of SDA talent has come to a lackluster climax, as the student teacher game gets less attention than the games immediately after school. The reason for this anticlimactic conclusion to such an amazing event is because it takes place over four hours after school gets out. Half the teams that play will lose their first game, and no one can expect them to stay the duration of the entire tournament just to see the teacher game. What ASB should do is end the tournament after the final student game and have the top four teams play against the teachers during an extended homeroom or lunch. In my time at SDA, we have never had an assembly on the field and having the entire student body watch the teacher game would give us an overwhelming sense of school spirit. Besides, most of the teachers are too busy or cool to spend their Friday night at a flag football tournament and this would allow every teacher to play if they wanted to.

NOV 2017


Surfer vs Skater

Junior surfer Kaeden Quinn and senior skater Landen Swincicki share with us their important opinions while contemplating the meaning of Thanksgiving and its traditions. By Nadia Ballard.


hen is the appropriate time to start putting up Christmas decorations? Surfer: Right after Thanksgiving because then you don’t merge the holidays Skater: The day after Christmas Right off the bat Surfer, minus 421 points. You act as if merging holidays is a bad thing. Ever heard of “The Nightmare Before Christmas”? It’s a cinematic masterpiece that is an artful example of the fact that holidays are complements to one another and that there is no such thing as merged holidays being bad. Great idea, Skater! It’s really nice to see people being so ahead of the game and being really proactive when it comes to Christmas decorations. If you start decorating the day after Christmas you’ve already put up your decorations a year in advance for next year and

you can spend a whole year admiring your Christmas decorations. Minus 100 points for being a smart ass. Can you sing me a Thanksgiving song? Surfer: There are no Thanksgiving songs Skater: I don’t believe in Thanksgiving Surfer, I didn’t ask if Thanksgiving songs existed. I asked you to sing one for me. Ever heard of improv? Spontaneous creativity? People always randomly burst into song in movies – why couldn’t you have done that for me? Simply disappointing. Minus 60 points for your lack of gumption. Skater, you’re right, Thanksgiving is just one big conspiracy put into place by the government in order to turn Americans into complacent lethargic stuffed turkeys. Plus 600 points for exposing the truth.

Do you believe in the Thanksgiving turkey ghost? When did you stop believing in it? Surfer: I didn’t even know that was a thing, but now I do. Skater: I don’t believe that we should eat turkey; it’s kinda messed up. Surfer, you fool. How easily I deceived you; there is no such a thing as a Thanksgiving turkey ghost. Minus 50 points for your ignorance and naive trust in what any random person on the street tells you. Skater, you didn’t answer the question but I commend you on your strong moral beliefs. Two points for you. Surfer: 1.8888887 points Skater: 8 points Congratulations Skate! You won nothing.

SKATER LANDON SWINCICKI casually leans against a collage of photos as surfer Kaeden Quinn lightly applies pressure to the wall with his back. Photo by Nadia Ballard.

A special thanks to the fabulous businesses that supported the SDA Foundation’s 21st annual fundraising event this month. Please take a look at our community partners and show your appreciation by supporting their businesses. 35 Productions Amazing Lash Studio AMX music Anonymous Arezzo Salon* Atrium Wines Baker & Olive Ballast Point Barrels and Branches* Beach Plum Kitchen Belly Up Tavern Best Pizza and Brew Bestawon Big Fly Athletics Blaze Newman Borelli's Brad's Foreign and Domestic* Casa De Uvas Cedros Soles Chicks Natural Cobra Puma Golf Coffee Coffee Crack Shack DaKine Davis Pediatric Dentistry*


Dream Dinners Duet Catering East Village Asian Diner El Camino Bikes Embroid Me, Encinitas Enc Bikram Yoga by the Sea* Encinitas Fish Shop Encinitas Sushi Lounge EOS Fitness * Epic Photo Booth Fish 101 Flippin’ Pizza Gail & Rice Gibson Lighting H&M Landing Herman Cook Volkswagen HIS Ice Town Jennifer Hewitson Illustration* Kombucha Culture LA Fitness La Paloma Theatre Lost Abbey Malahat Spirits Mammoth

Marea Coffee* Moonlight Yogurt and Ice* MotoRedux Naked Café Native Foods Café NONI Salon Boutique & Spa* Original Pancake House Pannikin Coffee & Tea Park 101 Elements Pipes Café Project Pie Q’ero Quigley Fine Wines Rancho Auto Body Reef Rico’s Taco Shop Rosati’s Pizza Round Table Pizza Roxy* San Diego Electric Bike San Diego Natural History Museum ScanCafe Schooners Seaside Market

SOLO Soulscape Sports Clips* Studio 101 Hair Salon Succulent Gardening* Sunshine Gardens* SUPERBRAND Surfboards Sushi House Susie Cakes Switchfoot The Bennett Family The Farber Family The Fish Market The Habit Burger Grill The Kindel Family The Morilak Family The Myers Family The Soth Family The Stead Family The Wagner Family The Wallace Family The Wylot Family Tony Hawk Ultrazone Laser Tag

USS Midway Wahoo Fish Tacos The Wishing Tree Company YMCA Yoga Six Yummy Cupcakes Ziobaffa Organic Wines Gordy’s* Tanya DeGregorio* The Biblowitz Family Hansen’s Surfboards* *San Dieguito Alum

University of San Diego



The Mustang

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