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the

stentorian

vol. XXXII, issue 2 the north carolina school of science and mathematics

september 2012 stentorian@ncssm.edu

Political speaker series invites discussion of key election issues By: Jordan Harrison

Professors Peter Feaver and Bruce Jentleson spoke at NCSSM on the foreign policy position of the two main presidential candidates on Sept. 12. Congressman Brad Miller also spoke about financial issues on Sept. 24, and NC State professor Andy Taylor will hold a domestic policy talk on Oct. 11. These professors and politicians participated in an on-going speaker series sponsored by instructors Mark Dubois and Kyle Hudson. Said Dubois, “One purpose [of the series] was to inform students of key issues in the election. I wanted to find a way as a community that we could have a relevant discussion about these issues…because the election is not something a lot of classes would address.” Feaver and Jentleson largely answered student questions, but student awareness in the discussion was mixed. “I think there are a few students [at NCSSM] who are news junkies and are very much informed about current events, although students have such busy lives otherwise that they find it hard to stay informed,” said Dubois. Senior Cyrus Homesley

attended the foreign policy debate, noting that both speakers’ knowledge of the subject was “extremely high.” The Sept. 12 talk focused mainly on foreign policy in the Middle East. “Generally, [the talk was about] foreign policy dealing with Iraq and Afghanistan,” said Homesley. “They were really in-depth with each argument. They brought up facts that I was unaware of.” “I asked about the significance of the Russians and the Chinese voting against the United States concerning U.N. Security Council resolutions about the use of force to aid the Syrian rebels,” said senior Paul Kushner. “My response was much more focused on Syria then I would have liked, although they did expound on that situation very well.” “I was particularly interested in Syria and asking the question, what does it look like in a post-Assad world?” said Dubois. Miller represents NC District 13 in the House of Representatives and serves on the House Committee on Financial Services and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. His discussion focused on financial

policy and on the creation of the CFPB, or Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Miller spoke largely on the reasons behind the housing market crash in 2007 and about the need for more consumer protections legislation. “Some people bought houses they shouldn’t have bought,” said Miller, “but the majority of people who got subprime mortgages qualified for subprime mortages. They were people who already owned their homes who borrowed money against them…[Brokers] were getting paid by consumers and banks, and they got paid more for rates borrowers did not qualify for. That struck me as a breach of faith.” “Here’s what the market is supposed to do—it’s supposed to squeeze and get consumers the best deals. That obviously is still not happening with banking,” said Miller. Miller received questions from students on a range of topics from STEM education to partisanship in the current political climate. “I don’t want politics to be between a party that wants a corrupt oligarchy and hates gay people and a party that wants a corrupt oligarchy and is okay with gay people,” said

Congressman Brad Miller Miller. “I want politics to be about how the economy works, which is how people’s lives work.” Taylor is an American politics expert and a political science professor. “I requested he think about

Courtesy of bradmiller.house.gov

discussing Medicare, Obama’s handling of the economy, taxes, and the debt ceiling,” said Dubois. According to Dubois, NCSSM held a similar series of talks four years ago before the 2008 election.

Neil Armstrong dies twenty days after Curiosity landing By: Rosalia Preiss

Just weeks after the statement: “For those who may landing of NASA’s new Mars ask what they can do to honor rover, one of NASA’s brightest Neil, we have a simple request. stars fell. 20 days after the Honor his example of service, landing of Curiosity, astronaut accomplishment and modesty, Neil Armstrong passed away and the next time you walk due to complications from a outside on a clear night and cardiovascular operation. see the moon smiling down at Armstrong is best known as the first man to walk on the moon. On July 21, 1969, he stepped off the Apollo 11 on to the surface of the moon, stating the iconic words “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Armstrong was not the only NASA Neil Armstrong’s footprint on the veteran to pass away Courtesy of NASA in 2012. Janice Voss, director of the Kepler Space you, think of Neil Armstrong Observatory, Alan Poindexter, and give him a wink.” the pilot of the first two trips NASA is continuing to the international space to move forward with new station, and Sally Ride, the first discoveries with the Mars American woman in space, Rover project. died this year. Curiosity, NASA’s newest Upon his passing, rover, launched from Cape Armstrong’s family issued this Canaveral on Nov. 26, 2011,

and made its first landing on Aug. 6, 2012. The rover traveled over 350 million miles to reach its targeted touchdown site. The goals of the Curiosity rover include investigating the climate and geology of Mars, assessing whether or not the selected field site has conditions favorable for microbial life, examining the role of water on Mars, and studying planetary habitability in preparation for possible human exploration in the future. Photos released by NASA from the Curiosity rover depict the stunningly rugged landscape of Mars. The rover captured Mount Sharp, its primary photography target, on film. Curiosity gave NASA a glimpse at the incredible variety in terrain on Mars, with gravel fields, impact craters, dunes, and gaping canyons between hills and mesas. Scientists discerned distinct layers in the

photographs, including claylike minerals that only form in the presence of water. By studying the composition of the stratified rocks, scientists hope to gain knowledge on the former environment of the red planet.

Even at full speed, it will take the rover at least 100 days to reach its final destination. During this time, one can expect more discoveries about Mars and its planetary climate, both in the past and now.

Curiosity takes its third drive on Mars

Courtesy of NASA


september 2012

news/features

the stentorian | ncssm

Escapist Expo attracts fantasy and gaming fans By: Jordan Harrison

The Escapist held its first ever convention from Sept. 1416 at the Durham Convention Center in Downtown Durham. Fans at the expo participated in a myriad of video game tournaments, such as League of Legends and Gears of War 3; attended panels, played in organized tabletop RPG sessions, and tried out some classic video games provided by the American Classic Arcade Museum in New Hampshire. Some NCSSM students and faculty attended the Expo, each with a different experience. As a first-time convention, the Expo encountered some problems upon opening. Ross Knight, SLI on 2nd Hill, said, “I was disappointed by the fact that the main expo hall was delayed by over an hour in opening. From what I

overheard the day of the event Said senior [on Friday], there was an issue Emmet Hobgood, with Internet connectivity “I got to be and as a result, even after the Rambo!” main exhibition hall opened, The none of the computer gaming convention sections were open during the also included times I was there.” a cosplay Senior Evan Chu said, contest, which “A lot more information involved making could have been provided and wearing beforehand, and there were costumes to not a lot of benefits for VIP impersonate tickets.” characters. Regardless of the Expo’s “Seeing all rough start, participants the cool cosplay overall enjoyed the festivities. made me want Senior Kyle Frid particularly to do it myself,” liked Chest High Walls, a said Hobgood. large-scale laser tag game He also enjoyed modeled after third-person the “general aura shooter games at Diamond of nerd culture” 8-bit Iron Man and Captain America View Park. at the convention. Courtesy of The Escapist “Chest High Walls was Said Knight, “I really fun,” said Frid. “I wish intricate map set-up, but I really enjoyed the there had been more of an enjoyed myself a lot.” artists that were in attendance

and even bought some items from one…the board games library available for convention goers to borrow from was [also] really well stocked and included games of all genres.” One notable panel was the Hour of Love, in which several harsh critics from The Escapist were forced to answer questions from convention goers nicely and lovingly. “It had a good premise and it was great seeing some panelists,” said senior Aaron Kovasckitz, “who I’m used to seeing act angry and annoyed, have to put on begrudging smiles and be witty in a roundabout way for a while.” The Escapist, an online magazine, focuses on video games and gaming culture and also features video reviews, notably Zero Punctuation by “Yahtzee” Crowshaw.

New teachers share their stories

Newly hired Mentorship coordinator starts

By Sarah Lee

Hope Concannon Dr. Hope Concannon grew up in Chicago, but has lived in North Carolina for the past 22 years. She has spent the past 14 years teaching in the mountains of Asheville in the western part of the state. Concannon gained her undergraduate degree in Physics and Mathematics from Valparaiso University before earning a PhD in Physics from Duke. She started teaching at Carolina Day School and has been there ever since. Although she is very excited to be back in Durham, Concannon says she will “miss going to the mountains, hiking trails, and rivers around Asheville.” In addition to hiking, Concannon enjoys running, dancing, and reading. Concannon has also traveled all over the world; and after visiting Madagascar twice, she is excited to make a visit to the Duke Center. Her subjects at NCSSM are Pre-Calculus and AP Statistics. An interesting fact: “I enjoy African drumming (djembe) and playing the traditional West African rhythms.” Emily Maxwell Ms. Emily Maxwell is originally from Plano, Texas, but currently a resident of Chapel Hill. She graduated from the University of Northern Texas, earning B.A. in Biology; University of Texas at Dallas, receiving M.A.T. with Environmental Science; and studied Geosciences at University of Texas at Dallas and Marine Sciences at UNCChapel Hill. Maxwell has taught Biology and Chemistry at NCSSM for many years, but is new to teaching distance learning at NCSSM. This year she will be

teaching Ecology, Evolution, and AP Environmental Science in DEEP. When asked about the reason for choosing NCSSM, Maxwell expressed that, “Curiosity first attracted me to NCSSM; working with the faculty and students at NCSSM keeps me coming back. This year, I am most excited about working in Distance Learning to export the S&M experience to students at other schools in NC.” An interesting fact: “I grew up on the site of the last conflict between Native Americans and settlers in the county; we had a historical marker in our back yard.” Dennis Yeh Mr. Dennis Yeh, a native of Murrysville, PA, “the esteemed setting of a certain tale about a Zack and a Miri” as he notes, is most excited about “bringing balance back to the Force in my discipline at NCSSM.” After studying Cognitive Science at Northwestern University, Mr. Yeh taught at NCSSM from 2005 to 2010, only to return two years later to teach Computer Science. An interesting fact: “I don’t drink coffee.” Kim Monahan Dr. Kim Monahan received her B.S. from University of Georgia in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and her PhD from UNC-Chapel Hill in Genetics and Molecular Biology. Monahan was born and raised in Pompton Plains, New Jersey, only 25 minutes outside of New York City. A SPIRE Fellowship Scholar, Monahan conducted a cancer research and studied Ras signaling in C. elegans at UNC-Chapel Hill. Before coming to NCSSM, Monahan taught courses at UNC-Chapel Hill, Fayetteville

State University and Alamance Community College. An interesting fact: Monahan enjoys hiking at national parks with her family. Monahan’s most extreme experience was at Half Dome in Yosemite Park where she used cables to scale the granite surface during the last quarter mile of the hike. Gail Boyarsky Ms. Gail Boyarsky spent most of her life in Durham. After earning her B.S. from Duke in Geology and MAT from UNC-CH in science teaching, Boyarsky began her career as an electron microscopist in a cell biology lab at Duke University, but switched to teaching, mostly in Chapel Hill, over 25 years ago. As an instructor of Climate Change Biology and AP Environmental Science, Boyarsky appreciates the amount of interest in the environment in the NCSSM community. An interesting fact: Two of Boyarsky’s nephews and one of her nieces have attended NCSSM. Joseph LoBuglio Dr. Joseph LoBuglio grew up on Long Island in New York. He studied mechanical and aerospace engineering from Princeton University, and aeronautics and astronautics from Stanford University before earning a PhD in environmental engineering from UNC-Chapel Hill. LoBuglio has worked for a number of industries, including automotive, solar energy, HVAC, water treatment, and aerospace. Most recently he worked as the associate director for research at The Water Institute at UNC, working to ensure safe water for the world. At NCSSM, LoBuglio

is teaching mechanical engineering, robotics, and related fields. An interesting fact: “I was once a penguin keeper at the New England Aquarium.” Darrell Spells Dr. Darrell Spells is a native of Fayetteville, North Carolina. After graduating from Duke University with a B.S. in Chemistry, Spells attended University of Texas at Austin where he earned his PhD in Organic Chemistry. At NCSSM, he is teaching Organic Chemistry, Advanced AP Chemistry, and General Chemistry. He calls teaching at NCSSM, “an opportunity to teach bright motivated students from all over the state of North Carolina.” An interesting fact: Spells attended Duke University on a football scholarship. Charlie Payne Mr. Charlie Payne grew up in Richmond, VA, and earned his BA and Med in Education from the University of Richmond. After several years of teaching and managing a small retail store of running equipment, Payne began coaching track and field at Duke University where he met my wife, an assistant basketball coach at Duke and an assistant field hockey coach at UNC-Chapel Hill. For the last twenty-four years, however, he has taught at Northern Durham High School while presenting physics at NSTA and AAPT, and teaching physics for a graduate program for teachers at UNC-Chapel Hill. Payne’s subject at NCSSM is Physics with Advanced Topics. An interesting fact: Mr. Payne has coached track and cross country for 44 years.

By Carl Yin Dr. Sarah Shoemaker started this Monday as the new fulltime Mentorship coordinator. John Kirk, the current Mentorship coordinator, will continue to be involved in the Mentorship program, but will phase out his involvement as the year continues. The hire comes after a proposed expansion of the Mentorship program, which made it necessary to find a full-time coordinator for the program. With potential new sources of funding, especially for transportation to mentorship locations, the Mentorship program will be able to accommodate more students in the program, starting for this year’s junior class. Shoemaker has an extensive background of research. She grew up in Ohio, and came to the triangle area to do her postdoctorate research at UNC. She received her doctorate from Case-Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. Her research was based on neuroscience, focusing on axon regeneration. She decided to join the NCSSM faculty due to her passion for teaching and research. “I love teaching, I have always loved teaching,” Shoemaker said. “To be able to teach [mentorship students on the field of] research is such a unique thing.” Shoemaker has enjoyed her time thus far on NCSSM campus. She said that “students here are so impressive and so fun.” Shoemaker was also very impressed with the students here, and added, “[They] have an excitement for research.”


the stentorian | ncssm

features/sports

New junior senators chosen By Jay Buchanan

The Junior Senators for 2012-2013 were elected Sep. 26 following a campus-wide early release from Supervised Study. The six junior senators were chosen from a group of thirteen, and are all male. Andrew Peterson, First Hunt, is focused on extending the events hosted by Student Government. His ideas include hot chocolate parties, pumpkin decorating at Halloween, a Valentine’s Day matchmaker, and Imitate-a-Staff-Member Day. Peterson’s campaign revolved around several colored fliers instructing juniors to “Keep Calm and Vote Andrew Peterson.” He hopes to serve on either the Programming or Public Relations Committee of Student Government. Durham native Isaiah Bryant delivered his campaign speech through a poem, highlighting his goals for the year. He told the voters in attendance that he hopes to get more food trucks to visit NCSSM and that he will lead an effort to replace the television in Hill lounge. His biggest priority is local networking between NCSSM and the city of Durham, saying, “There are a lot of misconceptions about Durham.” Bryant has already started work on forming a sub-committee in Student Government called Guide to Durham. Jack Allen sold himself to voters as “the Safe Candidate,” donning a unicorn helmet to the election. His goals for the year include enforcing greener practices on campus and instituting grades transparency. Sidney Lisanza says, “I felt I could actually help the students.” Lisanza, whose

campaign speech began with, “I have a dream” is more interested in representing the students than putting his own ideas in place. “I want to get student voices heard more in the administration,” he says. Lisanza hopes to serve on either Student Affairs Committee for the year, though he is also considering Academic Affairs. Second Hill’s David Choi is interested in all facets of government. “I’ve always done SG and it’s something I really love doing,” he says. As a junior senator Choi is targeting grade visibility first, but he is also interested in adjusting tutorial times so that they work better with classes and extracurricular activities. “Really I just want to make sure the school meets the standards of our hard work,” says Choi. He did not claim any direct aspirations with regard to Student Government roles. Parth Thakker was the last candidate to speak at the elections, and later claimed that, “they saved the best for last.” Thakker’s main goals as a senator include extending cafeteria hours and, like his colleagues, he hopes to achieve greater academic transparency. Though he hopes to serve on the Academic Affairs Committee, one of his biggest goals is relocating the Student Center to a more central location so students have greater access. The addition of the Junior Senate leaves only the Dorm Senators and Senators-atLarge left for instatement. The new Senators have thus far worked on several different initiatives, including a grades transparency survey, adjusting the Student Store hours, and forming a Sustainability Task Force.

august 2012

NHL lockout looms; Lance Armstrong stripped of all medals and awards By Steven Liao

Catch up on the latest sport stories from outside the NCSSM bubble NFL: NFL, Replacement officials facing heat—The NFL is currently in a lockout with the NFL Referee’s Association (NFLRA). The two groups are battling over — you guessed it— money. The NFL is currently using an eclectic group of replacement referees that includes the first NFL female referee, high school referees, and even a former Lingerie Football League Referee – yes, really. These replacement referees have bungled numerous calls in the NFL preseason, shifting the leverage over to NFLRA in discussions, and putting heat on the NFL and replacement officials Five rookie quarterbacks start in Week One—Russell Wilson plays as a starting rookie with the Seattle Seahawks. Joining him are Brandon Weeden (Cleveland Browns), Robert Griffin III (Washington Redskins), Andrew Luck (Indianapolis Colts), and Ryan Tannehill (Miami Dolphins). This is the first time in NFL history five rookie quarterbacks have started in the first game of the season. Bounty case overturned by appeals panel—Four players from the 2009-2010 New Orleans Saints team, Scott Fujita, Anthony Hargrove, Will Smith, and Jonathan Vilma had their “bountygate” suspensions lifted by an internal appeals

Lance Armstrong panel. They had previously each been suspended between four to sixteen games for their involvement in the Saints’ alleged pay-to-injure bounty system of the 2009 NFL season, when the Saints won the SuperBowl . NBA: Justin Timberlake to own part of Memphis Grizzlies— Justin Timberlake has agreed to take part in an ownership group, led by billionaire Robert Pera, that has bought the Memphis Grizzlies from current owner Michael Heisley. NHL: NHL lockout looms— The Collective Bargaining Agreement between the players and owners is set to expire Saturday, Sept. 15, at 11:59 p.m. E.T.

Courtesy of The Guardian

Negotiations appear to be far apart, with the players recently rejecting a proposal that would reduce the player’s portion of the revenue from 57% to 49%. Other: Cyclist Lance Armstrong banned from sport, stripped of medals—The United States Anti-Doping Agency charged Armstrong with drug violations. He is banned for life from cycling and stripped of all his cycling medals and awards since August 1, 1998. College football season takes off— The current AP regular season poll ranks the top ten teams as Alabama (1), Oregon (2), LSU (3), Florida State (4), Georgia (5), South Carolina (6), Kansas State (7), Stanford (8), West Virginia (9), and Notre Dame (10).

Scandals rock UNC and Duke athletic programs By Carl Yin

Duke and UNC Chapel Hill are both currently being investigated for scandals within their athletic programs. UNC has been charged with manipulating athletes’ grades and letting agents give players improper gifts. Duke’s scandal centers around its basketball team, as it has been alleged that Lance Thomas, a member of the 2010

the

Duke Basketball National Championship team, paid over 30,000 dollars for jewelry after the championship game and received an improper loan of 70,000 dollars from the jeweler to buy even more jewelry. According to NCAA guidelines, athletes are not allowed to get special treatment just because of their status. Information on Thomas’ alleged jewelry splurge came

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the north carolina school of science and mathematics 1219 broad street, durham, nc 27705

stentorian@ncssm.edu Editors-in-Chief: Carl Yin, Jay Buchanan, Jordan Harrison News Editor: Rosalia Preiss Features Editor: Mia Madduri Entertainment Editor: Marcy Pedzwater Opinion Editor: Sarah Lee Writers: Steven Liao, Mitchell Tague Advisor: John Kirk

out when the jeweler sued Thomas for not paying back a 70,000 dollar loan. Duke’s scandal, though based off one player’s possible actions, could have enormous repercussions. When Derrick Rose, a member of the 2007-2008 Memphis basketball team, was found to have cheated on the SAT, the entire Memphis 2007-2008 season and its Final Four appearance was vacated. If any slight infraction is found on Thomas, Duke’s 2010 National Championship could be vacated. However, recently, Thomas has settled in court with the jeweler, which may stop the NCAA from launching a formal investigation. Furthermore, the jeweler refuses to cooperate with the NCAA, and even with an investigation, the NCAA may not be able to obtain enough information to charge the Duke basketball program. However, the once spotless image of Duke’s athletic

program has been tarnished. UNC’s scandal began when information leaked about improper gifts given to athletes from agents. Upon further investigation, the NCAA found an even larger academic scandal, where athletes were given phony courses in UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp Courtesy of unc.edu African-American studies to raise their GPA’s. chairman of the Department These scandals have mainly of African and Afro-American involved the football team, but Studies have all since resigned cover many different athletic or been fired. Just last week, teams. For UNC, the NCAA UNC chancellor Holden Thorp has been investigating UNC’s decided to resign after the end scandal for over two years now, of the school year. with a number of prominent It looks like, after two faculty and administrators years of controversy, that the resigning. investigation is dying down The athletic director, and UNC sports, especially football coach, and the football, can start to recover.


4

september 2012

the backpage

the stentorian | ncssm

Trouble with the Curve: A Lukewarm Disappointment By Marcy Pedzwater Clint Eastwood’s latest movie Trouble with the Curve was, simply put, mediocre. Initially, I expected this movie to be great because of Clint Eastwood’s versatile and successful film career. From the actor who has starred in movies including the wildly popular Dirty Harry series and the Academy Award winning movie Million Dollar Baby, I anticipated a memorable film. However, Trouble with the Curve did not showcase the stunning features of a typical Clint Eastwood work. The movie was not dull by any means; in fact, it was

Student “Remixes” sports announcements By Mitchell Tague You may claim to be a sports fan, but have you gone so far as to make it your “profession” for the year? Austin Jenkins, commonly known as “Remix,” has created a new work service position which he is filling this year – sports announcer. In this role, Remix will play opening music for warm-ups and provide the starting lineups for all the home games for NCSSM sports squads. The idea started with the soccer teams last year. Regarding his plan, Jenkins said, “I’d see Eddie (Patch) last year, and a few other people…and he actually talked to a few guys and girls on the soccer teams, and he was like, ‘Let’s see if we can go ahead and get some music going for their warm-ups.’ So I was like, ‘Hey, might as well go and continue it.’” The group from last year did it all on a volunteer basis. However, Jenkins instead put in effort to make it a work service, talking to Coach Michell to cement it. Now Jenkins officially caters his services to all sports. “I talked to Coach Michell (last year), got it all

countless movies. Likewise, Clint Eastwood as the crass, distant father who secretly has a heart of gold was also a bit too stereotypical. I found it hard to take Clint Eastwood seriously as he sang “You are my Sunshine” at his dead wife’s grave in his deep, raspy action hero voice. While the movie was abundant with clichés, it was also surprisingly engaging at times. It centered on the life of Gus (Clint Eastwood’s character), an aging baseball scout. Overall, the movie was decent, but it lacked the finesse of Eastwood’s previous work; it wasn’t memorable and it wasn’t Oscar material. 3.5/5 stars

actually quite entertaining in some parts. The movie was surprisingly funny, including everything from witty banter to “your mom” jokes inserted cleverly throughout the film. The movie also included some poignant and touching moments; however, it seemed to drag, especially at the beginning. At times, the acting seemed forced and parts of the plot felt extremely clichéd and unoriginal. For example, Amy Adams’ character as the hotshot workaholic who rediscovers her humble roots is a common role that has appeared in

cleared up…so I talked, got a playlist…Coach Michell noticed I was doing exactly what he wanted me to do…” and the two worked together to build it from there. Jenkins thought about announcing each point in the match but, with the aid of Coach Michell’s advice, decided against it. “If we did announce for our teams, then we’d have to announce for both teams, because we didn’t want to disrespect them. I would be fine with that, but that would take away from the game; I’d be announcing something in volleyball and they’d already be playing the next point,” Remix pointed out. A similar job was part of a work service last year. However, it is encompassed by general PEC work service and has in the past often been considered more a courtesy than required work. Thanks to Remix, there’s one organized center for the job – him. Austin Remix Jenkins has always appreciated NCSSM athletics and how well they represent the school. Now, Remix is representing and supporting those teams for which he always cheered.

Photographers Needed Have a creative eye and willing to go to events. Preferably have experience in photography. If interested, please contact us at stentorian@ncssm.edu.

Courtesy of Warner Brothers

Gender Bender Day Where did the pockets go? By Mitchell Tague

“Guys look really attractive in minidresses with compression shorts peeking through!” was famously stated on Gender Bender Day by no one ever. The favorite of Spirit Week traditions, previously existing under the euphemism of Hawaiian Shirt Day, provides for some interesting perspective on male and female fashion. For some inexplicable reason, students often tend to dress in a negative stereotype of the opposite gender. Many a male spent the day periodically tugging his too-short skirt down further over fishnet stockings, and several females perfected their parodied self-important sneers as they adjusted their snapbacks. Some guys teetered into class late, claiming they could not effectively transition between classes in their [friends’] stilettos. Across campus, girls ambling through The Pit grabbed at their sagging inner pants’ seam a bit too often, as well. Furthermore, the day highlights some of the more difficult aspects of each gender’s style. No guy seemed to know what to do with his keys or wallet. Walking through the PFM, it was nigh impossible to avoid hearing a boy criticize their clothes’ lack of pockets. Conversely, girls marveled at the sudden new storage capacity. Still, all but drowning in a hoodie or Oxford shirt, they complained about the excess, shapeless fabric. This dissatisfaction with the other gender’s clothes, of

course, begs the question as to why people are interested in bending said gender in the first place. The answer lies in the shocked expressions of SLIs, faculty, and staff as students promenade around campus. Students revel in their calculus teachers’ inability to differentiate between the

Two seniors bending gender boys and girls in the class and their physics teachers’ forced chuckles. The day challenges students to leap as far over the edge of their comfort zone as possible. In simpler words, the day is ridiculous. Still, Gender Bender Day is not likely to die out any time

soon. Ridiculous though it may be, it is a tradition, and traditions at Science and Math are important. While many things, like whether it is socially acceptable to say “swaggie,” may change in the future, some culture is permanently ingrained in the school.

Courtesy ofTatiana Miller

Students will always complain about their homework load, find shortcuts to doing housekeeping, and battle for possession of the far left swing. And one day a year, there will always be one kid in a sea of cross-dressers looking confused in a Hawaiian shirt.

Stentorian September 2012  
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