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A&M Consolidated High School

Hit the high notes on page 11.

1801 Harvey Mitchell Pkwy. S., College Station, Texas 77840

Friday, May 17, 2013

Vol. 18 No. 6


District's internet blocking software inhibits learning, research Although this year at restrictions on electronic use during classes and in the hallways have loosened considerably, limits on the way electronics can be used on school campus still exist; CSISD has put into place a stricter online filter, blocking many sites and certain keywords. see "blocking" on page 3


where News Viewpoints Snapshots Student Life

pages 2-6 People

pages 7-10 Health & Rec page 11 Sports

pages 14-16 pages 17-18 pages 19-21

pages 12-13 Entertainment/Etc. pages 22-24

nthis ssue

Senior Nafis Deen presents stark statistics on world poverty at Interact's Hunger Banquet. PAGE 5

special edition

anne finch assistant editor

check out the

senior pull-out

2012 2013

n the news

2 | news | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

A qu ck view

14 members of UIL academics team advance to state

Sophomores qualify for nationallevel MOAS competition

The UIL academics team attended the regional academic UIL meet at Baylor University on April 20. The team as a whole earned enough points to place second in sweepstakes competition, and six students placed high enough to advance to state as individuals: senior Kensen Shi (third place in Science); juniors Dana Branham, Michelle Liu and Brooke Versaw (third place in Headline Writing, first place in Literary Criticism, and first place in Spelling, respectively) and sophomores Shilpa Saravanan and Karna Venkatraj (third place in Editorial Writing and first place in Informative Speaking). Senior Samantha Wang, juniors Rachel Scott and Shankar Srinivasan, sophomores Alex Coopersmith and Shreya Shankar and freshmen Lisa Liu and Annie Zhang will advance as part of the winning teams in Spelling and Literary Criticism and the wildcard team in current events.

Sophomores Dahlia Rohm and Sydney Garrett competed in the Texas Model Organization of American States competition on March 23 and earned enough points to qualify for the national competition in Washington D.C. on November 28. The Model Organization of American States competitions attempt to familiarize students with the work of the Organization of American States, which operates as the foremost peacemaking and negotiation body in the Americas.

French students place third at Texas French Symposium The French Symposium team, coached by French teacher Vanessa Mitchell, placed third at the annual Texas French Symposium, held this year at Sam Rayburn High School in Pasadena, Texas. The team took 34 top-six awards in various contests. Freshman Marley Hays earned an overall top-ten individual award for placing across several categories.

Newspaper and yearbook staffs recognized at state level The newspaper and yearbook staffs won state awards at the 85th annual ILPC convention on April 27-28 at the University of Texas at Austin. The Roar Newspaper earned a Silver Star, the second highest level of recognition, and last year’s Humongous yearbook earned an award of Distinguished Merit, the fourth highest level of recognition. In addition, these newspaper staffers earned individual awards: seniors Laura Everett, Devin Dakota and Janet Ni; juniors Michelle Liu and Dana Branham; and sophomore Shilpa Saravanan. Yearbook staffers winning individual awards included seniors Makell Garlick, Hannah Rudder, Kristen Schocke and Savannah Hedge and junior Alex Hueste.

Freshman John Martin (far right) stops to smile for a photo while waving down traffic in the parking lot of Kroger’s on Southwest Parkway. Martin was working on his Eagle Scout project, which aims to help the people of West, Texas, recently affected by an explosion. PHOTO BY DANA BRANHAM

Com ng up May 17-18:

WIT vs FIT, 7pm in the auditorium

May 20:

The Roar’s profit share @ Blue Baker, 5pm-8pm; Media Tech Film Fest, 7pm

May 21:

Choir “Showtime” concert

May 23:

Band spring concert

May 27:

Memorial Day

May 29:

Finals (5th, 1st, 7th)

May 30:

Finals (2nd, 4th, 6th)

May 31:

Finals (3rd); Graduation @ Reed Arena, 7pm

Need senior photos?

College Station’s newest entertainment activity! Visit us online for details, parties, & daily classes. Visit: 1643 Texas Avenue South Call: 979.485.9838

senior pictures couple portraits family photos

the roar | news | 3

friday, may 17, 2013

Internet filter policy creates inconvenience, hinders schoolwork “blocking” continued from page 1

CLASSWORK DISRUPTIONS Senior Amanda Yang expressed frustration at this policy, saying that the increased number of blocked keywords provides more unnecessary difficulties than benefits. “I don’t think it’s very helpful, because it blocks a lot of websites that are unrelated to the keywords used,” she said. “I understand why they blocked ‘bush’ and ‘hard,’ but when you’re looking up George Bush or how hard it is to do something, it kind of hinders the student getting to their goal.” Speech and debate teacher Roy Rodriguez agreed that the blocking software often serves as a hindrance to student goals. He said that the restrictions on words denoting controversial topics such as gun violence and gay marriage have made it difficult for his debate students to complete assignments. “As a debate coach, it’s absolutely been inconvenient,” he said. “In debate we’re researching things on current issues, and current issues include gun violence, gay marriage and all those kinds of things I can’t look up. I can look it up as an educator but the students can’t, so if I tell my students ‘Okay, we’re going to debate DOMA and whether or not it’s an appropriate action for the United States to have taken,’ [they] can’t look that up!” Several of Rodriguez’s debate students, including sophomores Alex Coopersmith and Karna Venkatraj, agreed with his assessment of the difficulties debate students face due to the filtering process. “As an [extemporaneous speaker], you have to know a wide range of things including ‘bad’ or mischievous things that are going on in the world which I can’t look up when I actually need to, like global drug trades, sex trafficking, human trafficking and things that are important in our global society,” Venkatraj said. “I can’t look [them] up on the computers in our school, which actually hinders our research a lot in terms of case creating.” Coopersmith added that aside from hindering the debate team’s research of current issues, subjects are often blocked unnecessarily. “Most of the words that are blocked aren’t really inappropriate,” Coopersmith said. “They just look at the word, they don’t look at the source. For example: Washington Post, the New York Times—those are not inappropriate sources. They should go not by what the title of what you’re reading is, but by what source you’re getting it from.”

REASONS FOR BLOCKING CSISD network coordinator Keith Slaughter said that despite difficulties teachers and students may face with the filtering policy, the blocking is both necessary to keep students away from inappropriate web content as well as required by law. “The desire isn’t to stop any legitimate research,” Slaughter said. “That’s not the goal at all. There are federal requirements in place that dictate that we do internet filtering, so we have to be in compliance with that, but [if there is] any legitimate research that needs to be going on, especially if a teacher is assigning it, then we need to make sure that we allow the right kind of research to occur.” Although librarian Pam Slough said that the American Library Association generally discourages forms of censorship such as school filtering, she expressed support for the policy, saying it not only helps regulate research for high school students but for younger students in CSISD as well. “I understand the desire to filter, especially for the younger kids,” Slough said. “There’s a lot out there that they really shouldn’t be exposed to. Some words that seem really innocent can bring up some offensive things that you really don’t want to be exposed to—that I don’t want to be exposed to! So while filtering does have that air of censorship to it, I understand why we do it and I recognize the need for it.” Despite some teachers’ concerns about students’ capabilities to do research with the restrictions in place, Slough said that the library has found ways to enable student searches within the limits of the policy. “We have to find ways around it by using the [library research] databases,” Slough said. “Teachers [can evaluate] websites ahead of time and choose specific websites so students can get to those kind of things. That gets us around those issues, because [the blocking policy] does somewhat inhibit, but I think the benefits outweigh the risks.”

SOCIAL NETWORK IMPACT Though he said he found the restrictions debilitating, Rodriguez stated that this year’s move from blocking popular social networking sites such as Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook to blocking certain keywords and more obscure sites with inappropriate content have in some ways been welcome. This change is mostly due to Consol’s loosened electronics policy, he said. “This year was new because we allowed the ‘bring your own device’ policy and I think that changed a lot of

things for the campus,” Rodriguez said. “I think they unblocked [social networking sites] because we cannot stop it, and students were going to find a way around it. It is what it is. People use Twitter for a news source now. People use Facebook in education classes as a study group. I didn’t think they could stop it, so it’s better to let it go and just appease than let it cause more problems. As for the blocking, I think some students were abusing and the people over at technology found out and had to make changes.” Yang also expressed her appreciation for the social networking access before reiterating that the system could still be improved with regards to the use of keyword blocking. “Social networking systems shouldn’t be blocked because they also have some use, like [when] kids make English groups and post pictures of the worksheets,” Yang said. “I’ve used that before, and it’s actually helped me a lot. But then I feel like they shouldn’t block key words [and] instead [block] websites that they know are inappropriate, because I’m sure they know at least ten off the tops of their heads, and you can block those and all the [pages] that branch off those websites instead of just targeting words.”

FUTURE POLICY CHANGES Slaughter said that it is possible that the policy could change again next year after effects of this year’s policy and feedback towards it are reviewed. “I think the process could change in a couple of different ways,” Slaughter said. “One way that it could change is that the company we purchase the filtering from could change something about the way they do their thing. That could certainly have an effect, for better or for worse, on how things go. I know every year we take a look at the experiences we’ve had in the past from previous years, where any issues arose, and how can we address [those]. We want to keep moving forward, we don’t want to be a hindrance to that, so we’ll analyze what went right, what went wrong, whether we need to change something about how we’re doing things and adjust as appropriate.” He added that CSISD’s overall goal with their filtering system is to keep the internet safe for students and teachers, as well as to create a learning environment for the school. “We want to make sure that teachers and students are able to continue to do what they need to do to learn and to teach, and we’re open to any suggestions that anybody has to make the system better,” Slaughter said.

What is CIPA? CIPA is an acronym for the Children’s Internet Protection Act. Consol and thousands of other schools are required by it to filter students’ internet activity. It was enacted by Congress in 2000 to address concerns about children’s access to harmful or obscene internet content.

How are schools subject to CIPA? Schools must monitor hacking, minors’ access to harmful materials, chat room and email safety, and unauthorized disclosure. In addition to monitoring online activity of minors, schools must educate minors on appropriate internet behavior. Schools must certify that they comply with CIPA’s requirements before they can receive funding.

What are the rules about blocking? The protections must block content considered obscene, pornographic, or harmful to minors. Only an authorized adult may disable the blocking measures for research or other lawful purposes.


4 | news | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

Teenage parenthood changes lives, provides new perspective

michelle liu and shilpa saravanan | features editor and news editor Skipping class isn’t a big deal for some people, but missing a period is. Thus began senior and former Consol student Brandy Murphy’s nine-month journey to parenthood. After that fateful discovery, Murphy took a pregnancy test, which came out positive. “I was just crying so much,” Murphy said. “I was scared. I didn’t want to tell my mom.” Murphy’s mother, who originally shunned Murphy, became closer to her after the initial shock, and she now cares for Trevor, Murphy’s ten-week old son. Additionally, Murphy consulted child development teacher Monica Smith, who teaches the Parenting Ed class at Consol, which Murphy enrolled in. “You have to have documentation to be in [the class],” Smith said. “We do not discriminate against male and female, so if a teen dad said, ‘Hey, my girlfriend is pregnant,’ then he can come in too; we will serve him.” While she remained at Consol, Murphy learned childcare skills and information on labor and delivery. While she says the general response to her pregnancy at Consol was less negative than expected, Murphy did deal with some comments around the school. “When I first started showing, people started finding out, and they were like, oh, that’s the pregnant girl,” Murphy said. “And then whenever I got big, you could just hear people whispering at lunch, in the halls, everywhere-people I didn’t even know!” Later, Murphy was transferred onto the minimum credit plan, and began attending Timber Academy in order to graduate early.

Timber Academy, Murphy said, is much more flexible than Consol, which makes it ideal for expectant mothers. Murphy especially appreciates the six weeks of maternity leave she had, as she had a kidney infection and then went through a painful C-section to give birth. “I was so scared of having a C-section,” Murphy said. “I kept telling my doctor, I do not want a C-section, I do not want a Csection. But [in the end, the doctors] told me he wouldn’t come out of me if I didn’t get one.” Heavily sedated at the time, Murphy only hazily recalls her initial glimpse of her newborn son. “The first time I could remember, I was like ‘Aww, it’s my baby!’ I was so surprised that he actually came out of me. I mean, it’s a little person,” she said. Since leaving, the former sophomore at Consol has earned enough credits to be a senior at Timber. Upon graduation, she plans to attend Blinn College and pursue a career in accounting. Unlike Murphy, junior Daisy Johnson*, who had her baby in the first half of her high school career, still attends Consol, juggling motherhood with honors coursework. When she returned to school after her sophomore year, Johnson became an object of curiosity to fellow classmates, and she occasionally faced the stigma that often comes with teenage motherhood. “Suddenly everyone knew me, and they were all my best friend,” Johnson said. “And other people feel like I was irresponsible, and that I still am irresponsible. They feel like they can judge me even though they don’t know me, which is the hard part about it.”

Johnson’s grandfather takes care of her daughter while Johnson attends school. In the evenings, Johnson picks her daughter up and spends time with her through the night, and then the cycle begins again the next morning. Murphy, like Johnson, has learned to adjust her lifestyle to raise her child. During her six weeks of maternity leave, Murphy

“I don’t go out anymore. Most of my time I just spend with [my daughter], and I like that.” junior Daisy Johnson completed her schoolwork at night as she became accustomed to the inevitable sleepless nights of a new mother. The time commitment to being a mom means that some of Murphy’s previous friendships at Consol have suffered, too. However, Murphy has developed strong bonds with other parenting students at Timber. “There’s a lot of support. We all understand what it takes and why we have to do all this,” Murphy said. As a teen mom, Murphy has found herself the source of this support and guidance for others struggling in the same position she was in a few months ago. “A lot of pregnant people or people who think they’re pregnant always write me on Facebook-like I don’t even know them, but I love giving them advice, because it’s helpful, and some people don’t have the resources I have,” Murphy said. “But it’s a journey. When you first find out, it’s like ‘Oh my

God, I’m not going to be able to do this,’ but then you realize you can.” Murphy loves her son Trevor and enjoys motherhood, but she realizes that her situation has its practical issues. She receives nine bottles of relatively expensive baby formula a month from the Federal Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, or WIC, but Trevor goes through this amount quickly, forcing Murphy to purchase even more. Trevor goes through diapers even more frequently, but Murphy, fortunately, is covered for many months to come on this front. “People usually bring clothes to a baby shower, but my friends brought me a bunch of diapers,” Murphy said. “And I love that.” This question of resources is what concerns Smith the most about aiding teen parents. “[Some students already] have a support system at home, so then we will support that support system,” Smith said. “There are students who come here that might be homeless; they have not seen a doctor; they have not been eating right because there’s no food. So we have different levels, we have some that come us thinking, ‘I think I might be [pregnant], where can I go?’ We tell them where they can go and what resources [they can use].” Ultimately, Murphy treats her new life in a positive manner-she won’t let being a mom interfere with her career plans, which are currently to attend Blinn and eventually become an accountant. Instead, she savors the joy she gets from raising Trevor. “If you’re upset about anything, you can just see him smile. It’ll make everything better,” Murphy said. “That’s what I love most.” *names changed to protect students


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the roar | news | 5

friday, may 17, 2013

Students with same-sex parents stress similar upbringings leah crisman | assistant editor The topic of gay rights is a constant the news lately. Gay marriage continues to divide the nation alongside the related topics of hospital visitation rights and equal treatment. With many high school students this debate becomes personal: they have a friend who is gay or a gay sibling perhaps. What if that personal connection was your own mother? “When I was younger it was really awkward, like if I was having friends over at my house or when I had my first boyfriend,” junoir Laura Beth Ioerger said. “I was like ‘Heeeey, how do I tell you this?’” The switch to same-sex parents happened early for Ioerger. Since her parents’ divorce when she was six she’s lived with two female parental figures her genetically related parent she calls her ‘mom’ and her mom’s partner who Ioerger refers to by her first name. This unusual familial situation gives Ioeger the ability to see the stigma surrounding homosexuality without being gay.

“People don’t understand how it makes you feel when you say things like [‘that’s gay’],” Ioerger said. Senior Ty Thomas can relate. He lives half the time with his father and the rest with his mother and her partner. Unlike Ioerger, however, Thomas was informed about the relationship at the age of sixteen. In fact, his mother’s coming out to him was so recent that it is not so much a life-changer but a new identity for two people he will always see as ‘mom’ and ‘Aunt Bet.’ He shrugs his shoulders-a mix of acceptance and ambivalence-over something that has never fazed him and likely never will. “She had lived with us for so long and she was just always going to be ‘Aunt Bet’, so it didn’t really bother me,” Thomas said. “And even before that I was [a] really pro-gay rights kind of person.” Thomas’s interest in Gay Straight Alliance and growing support of gay-rights activism facilitated the conversation. “[She saw that] I was

showing interest and being openminded,” Thomas said. “She was like ‘oh, he can handle this.’” For both Ioerger and Thomas, ‘two moms’ isn’t really the way they would describe it. Their genetically related parent is the figure they think of as a ‘mom’ in the traditional sense. Their mothers’ partners are loved and respected like parents, but, as they both concluded: it’s complicated. “It’s definitely a weird situation,” Thomas said. “It was kind of hard for me to grasp at first.” However the parental identities are construed, the stigma of even one homosexual parent can cause them to be ostracized. Ioerger recalls an early relationship at the age of six that was cut short by the girl’s mom. “I wasn’t allowed to go over to her house, she wasn’t allowed to come over to mine,” Ioerger said. “We weren’t allowed to play with each other and I think it’s probably because of my mom being a lesbian and she didn’t like that. I felt it was really unfair because it’s not my

fault.” Thomas has never had this issue. A combination of natural gregariousness and only having learned about his mom’s partner at age sixteen prevented it from being a problem. “I think I don’t have problems with it because people know if they do say something to me, they’re probably going to get an earful and they don’t want to listen to my ranting and raving,” Thomas said. “I definitely do think I would have had problems if I was a kid, but now I’m a senior it’s [no big deal].” “Hey, my mom’s a lesbian” is the kind of statement revealed to close friends, just as with any personal information Thomas and Ioerger agree. In high school, though, personal information is fodder for gossip and seldom strictly personal for long. Dealing with intrusive people is just part of the bargain, though bluntness and humor help defuse any impertinent questions. “I don’t really think it’s all that awkward nowadays,” Ioerger said. “But I remember freshman year

someone came up to me and they [said] ‘I’ve heard rumors that your mom is lesbian’ and ‘Is that true? Is that a real thing?’ and I was like ‘Yeah, it’s a thing.’” Thomas relies on humor both tart and deadpan. He concedes that if it doesn’t come up, he of course doesn’t mention it, but he is more than willing to bring it into the conversation. “If someone makes a gay joke I’ll be like ‘hey, my mom’s gay,’ Thomas said. “They’re ‘Oh I’m so sorry’ but it’s not really that big of a deal.” “Not really that big of a deal” is a mantra both Ioerger and Thomas stick to when talking about all aspects of having homosexual parents. The differences are trivial to them and seem to have much more to do with lingering prejudice than with parenting style. “[It] was kind of weird because I did think ‘Aw, I’m going to be a little sissy because I’m growing up [with two women],’” Thomas said. “It was just like growing up with a normal family; it isn’t different.”

Hunger Banquet raises awareness for hunger stricken, poor aaron ross | assistant editor Over 2.5 billion people in the world live in poverty. Over 925 million people suffer from chronic hunger. A child dies from malnutrition or a preventable disease every 10 seconds. To provoke action against these injustices the Interact Hunger Banquet took place April 25th in the cafeteria of AMCHS. Hunger banquets are poverty simulations used to raise awareness for schools and communities about the wide spread effects of hunger and poverty. “We had a jar full of slips that were character cards,” junior and head of the event Michelle Liu said. “There was a ratio in the jar: 15% [of the cards] were high income, 35% were middle income, and 50% were lower. Based off that you would be seated in a certain area of the cafeteria. Lower class was on the floor, middle was on cafeteria tables, and high income was seated on really nice tables with table cloths.” The character card not only determined where people ate, but also what they ate. “The lowest class had a little bucket of bread. They had to [share it],” sophomore Ryan Brauer said. “The middle class had some spaghetti. I was a server for the upper class group. Everything [that] was there they [could have].” The event’s main purpose was to raise awareness, but it achieved other goals as well.

“Yes, it is to raise awareness, but we also sold tickets that raised funds for Oxfam America,” junior Alona Weimer, a speaker at the event, said. “Oxfam teaches [people] how to make their community better.” Oxfam America is a member of Oxfam, an international confederation of 17 organizations networked together in 94 countries, whose common goal is to help create a future free from poverty. They do this by teaching impoverished people how to provide for themselves more efficiently, supporting groups trying to overcome discrimination and promoting women’s rights. After everyone received their food for the night (upper, middle, then lower) the speakers at the event explained different scenarios that people in the different economic class would be in. The examples included the persona of Siriaco Meji, a Guatemalan member of the middle class who normally grows 2,200 pounds of corn, but due to little rainfall, was only able to harvest about a tenth of it. He and his family have to migrate to work on a plantation in order to make enough money to survive. The event ended on a hopeful note with a quote from Nelson Mandela, and closing words from Liu. “I want to leave you with the words of someone whom many have found inspiring,”

Liu said. “‘Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome. Overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life.’ [This] speaker was Nelson Mandela. Together we can change the world.”

The upper class enjoys a nice meal of spaghetti, bread and salad. Hidden behind the table, the lower class ate meager pieces of bread. PHOTO BY AARON ROSS

6 | news | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

Spikefest provides fun opportunity to play volleyball, encourages unity lisa liu | assistant editor When the school-wide volleyball tournament known as Spikefest first began five years ago, it was open to only boys. It was head volleyball coach Cydryce McMillian who later expanded the idea to include girls as well, and in the following years, the event continued to grow in size. This year’s tournament, held on Thursday, April 25, drew in twenty-four teams of around eight people each, accomplishing McMillian’s original goal to unite the students of Consol in a few fun hours of volleyball. “I thought it was a great way to get a diverse group of students together,” McMillian said. “It’s open to anyone— we have band students and drama students, and athletes and non-athletes who play.” This year, as with years before, the registration fees that the teams paid were pooled together to provide the cash prizes that they competed for. Those fees, however, also covered the costs of the team t-shirts of which each team selected their own color. “Last year was the first year we incorporated the t-shirt idea—we had twenty-five different teams, twenty-five different colors of shirts,” McMillian said. “We kind of painted Consol, and it was awesome.” Spikefest came together as a group effort on the parts of the volleyball team

as a whole. “Every volleyball player had to get a team together. We had to collect the money, each sell five t-shirts, and then actually run the tournament,” said junior Hannah Friedman, varsity volleyball captain. “It was a fair amount of work.”

“It was a great way to get a diverse group of students together.” Coach Cydryce McMillian According to Friedman, volleyball naturally fit the purposes of the tournament because it was a sport that virtually anyone could play without having much experience. “Even if you don’t exactly know how to play or you’re playing with a bunch of people who don’t know how to play, it’s still fun,” Friedman explained. McMillian agrees that the nature of volleyball is universal. “[Spikefest] is a really cool idea [because] everybody can play volleyball,” McMillian said. “We can all just come together under the same roof to have a good time.”

Senior Boyce Unger and his teammate run for the ball, hoing to win the 5th annual Spikefest tournament. They were one of the 24 teams who competed on Thursday, April 25. PHOTO BY SHILPA SARAVANAN

Committee celebrates Earth Week to promote eco-friendly efforts nicole farrell | sports editor This year, the Energy and Environment committee of Student Council convalesced, their improved organization and overall success highlighted in the recent Earth Week. “[Earth Week and its corresponding events] is to promote energy awareness and conservation efforts,” co-committee head senior Shankara Anand said. Earth Week at Consol also focused on education, including dress up days with colors representing various forms of energy and earth-friendly concepts, such as red for nuclear energy and blue for recycling. Additionally, the committee greeted students entering the building, passing out candy and facts about the environment and the importance of protecting the Earth we all share. The group also worked closely with Keep Brazos Beautiful, a local environmental organization that recruits volunteers from all demographics.

E&E volunteered for their TrashOff and Earth Day celebration the weekends before their Earth Week. This type of involvement is new, however. The previous year was a bit of struggle for the E&E committee because of lack of leadership. This year, Anand and co-committee head junior Sanathan Iyer focused on redefining E&E within Student Council and the school. “Our goals coming in this year were to really get the committee involved,” Anand said. “Especially since last year there wasn’t as much a drive.” Iyer adds that another goal included emphasizing the importance of their eco-friendly efforts and impact. “We wanted to show that E&E is important and to bring that importance back into StuCo,” Iyer said. Anand commends the level of commitment of the members and the involvement of the entire Council in reestablishing distinc-

tion for E&E at the state convention this year, a feat not accomplished last year. “[In] Student Council, we have a lot of fun,” Anand said. “But we’re also like a family. Being a family, I have people who aren’t in my committee come to events and I have people that offer to help in any time, shape, or form.” Iyer commented that this year’s committee was “excellent,” with Anand adding that their small size did not limit them in activities. It is Anand and Iyer’s wish that Earth Week and the combined efforts of various student organizations such as the Environmental Club and Key Club will continue to improve the eco-friendly status at Consol. “It’s a combined effort,” Anand said. “I think it’s awesome in the first place that you just see recycling bins, four of them, just in the cafeteria, as you walk in.”

Earth Week Fun Facts When 1 ton of paper is recycled, 7,000 gallons of water, 17 mature trees, and 2 barrels of oil are saved! 130 million cell phones enter the landfills each year. That’s over 2 million a week! Earth Day was created by Wisconsin senator Gaylord Nelson in 1970 and is now celebrated in 175 countries. The amount of money that doubling efficient energy would save could pay off the existing debt in every household in the U.S. According to the World Fact Book 2008, the world's oil reserves will last until 2052. Source:

the roar | viewpoints | 7

friday, may 17, 2013

Significance of “selfies” lies in self-esteem

The other day, I turned on Photobooth to check my hair (mostly because I was too lazy to find a mirror, although that’s another story), only to find two photos of my sister, looking disgustedly away from the screen, holding up a sign that read, in all capital letters, “STOP TAKING SEDUCTIVE PICTURES OF YOURSELF HERE,” her eyes filled with rage directed at me. (They are not flattering photos; I promptly avenged myself through posting them—where else?— on the Internet.) Selfies get an extraordinary amount of hate and scorn. The amount of judgment incurred on those who take pictures of themselves seriously is hefty, the disapproval indicating that selfies must somehow be distasteful, tacky, terrible. (The only way, it seems, to get away with taking selfies is to either a) be incredibly gorgeous by all accounts, or b) add #selfie in the caption, just so people realize you’re being ironic, and you can assuage the guilt of photographing your own face.) After all, sitting in front of your camera or your phone, puckering your mouth or tilting the angle so that your jaw juts out just the right way, seems terribly selfabsorbed. But what does the viewer’s gaze—your gaze—even matter, Artwork by Joy Cope The Roar 2012-2013 Staff Editor-in-Chief: Laura Everett Managing Editor: Dana Branham Senior Editor: Devin Dakota Executive Editor: Rachel Kagle Photography Editor: Janet Ni Opinions Editor: Isabel Drukker Features Editor: Michelle Liu Sports Editor: Nicole Farrell News Editor: Shilpa Saravanan Entertainment Editor: Leah Crisman Assistant Editors: Eva Araujo, Anne Finch, Tiffany Hammond, Lisa Liu, Rojas Oliva, Aaron Ross, Channing Young, Annie Zhang Faculty Adviser: Michael Williams Assistant Adviser: Teresa Laffin

The Roar Editorial Board Laura Everett, Editor-in-Chief Dana Branham, Managing Editor Isabel Drukker, Opinions Editor


The Advanced Journalism class is at A&M Consolidated High School, 1801 Harvey Mitchell Parkway South, College Station, Texas, 77840. The opinions expressed are those of the writers and are not reflective of the administrators, faculty or staff of the College Station Independent School District. Submissions to the editors are welcomed but must be signed and should not exceed 300 words. The editor reserves the right to edit submissions in the interest of clarity and length or to not print a letter at all. Letters containing obscene or libelous material will not be considered. The Editorial Board consists of the editor-in-chief, managing editor and opinions editor. The Roar is a member of the Interscholastic League Press Conference (ILPC), the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) and the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA). The Roar is a winner of the CSPA Gold Crown, the 1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 ILPC Award of Distinguished Merit, the CSPA Gold Medal Award, the NSPA All-American distinction and 2005 ILPC Bronze Star and 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 Silver Star. College Station Independent School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex or handicap in providing education services. Glynn Walker, Director of Human Resources, 1812 Welsh, College Station, Texas 77840 (979-764-5412) has been designated to coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements of Title IX. Catherine George, Director of Special Services, 1812 Welsh, Suite 120, College Station, Texas 77840 (979-764-5433) has been designated to coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination. requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.

Internet filtering policy complicates use This year, the school district made valiant attempts to filter internet searches. While previous filtering arrangements never particularly presented that many problems, these new restrictions comically missed the mark. Of course, blatantly obvious words—like “porn” and “nude”— should be blocked because searching for those things are certainly not appropriate for school. But the filters catch other words—like “gay”—that are not necessarily linked with anything inappropriate. In fact, the filter inhibits the students from researching for school projects, as any news articles or informative websites covering such topics cannot be accessed. The Roar had difficulties ordering staff t-shirts because the website’s URL contained the word “live.” Even those with good intentions are limited by this system. To test the system, The Roar did some searching and found that a Suicide Prevention website was blocked (as it referred to sexualorientation-based bullying), yet nude photos could still be accessed. Surely, this is not catering to our student body’s wellbeing. The district has a contract with a company that provides the filtering service, hopefully they can resolve these issues over the summer.


michelle liu features editor

when it simply isn’t about you? It’s about the person wielding the camera, reclaiming a sense of self, acknowledging their own right to their own body, deciding for themselves that they look good today. Your hate isn’t of any merit. And that’s all there is to it. Selfies subvert societal gazes, allowing individuals to construct for themselves how they wish to be viewed; ultimately, these self-portraits are a personal liberty, a show of defiance against the expectations of us, as girls (mostly), to be pretty and yet not flaunt it. For some of us, the selfie is a bit of an art, a way to capture that sliver of self-esteem that comes with having a new haircut or just merely a day where we feel pretty, if for once. Taking selfies might be considered vain and narcissistic, but a little vanity is healthy in an age where we worry about public appearances, where Twitter and Instagram only magnify our desires to make ourselves appear beautiful and loved and popular. If vanity is a lifeboat, then so be it—what right do we have to condemn others for the buoyancy of their self-esteem? Hence, a challenge: take a photo of yourself, preferably a fantastic one. Don’t frown, but do pout if you think that’s cute. Appreciate it. Do what you want with it. Realize your own awesomeness. (And don’t let my sister get in your way.) Michelle is Features Editor for the Roar. If you want to share your favorite selfies with her, you can send them to the.roar.

If you would like for your opinions to be read, contact the editorial board by sending your letter to the editor. Review our policy for letters before submitting. E-MAIL

8 | news | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

Student finds lightheartedness in racial stereotype jokes lisa liu assistant editor

“Hey Lisa, what kind of televisions do Asians watch?” It was during a sixth grade math class. My friend had just begun to tell me a joke, one that I could tell she’d been sitting on for a while. “What?” I replied warily. I could also tell exactly what direction it was headed in. “Widescreen! Get it?” she yelled immediately, confirming my suspicions, and then stared at me expectantly. I faked a laugh for her benefit, but my sixth grade self was definitely not amused. Partly because it was a pretty sad excuse for a joke, but also because I was offended and annoyed. (What kind of person tells you a racist AND overused joke to your face? Just going to point that out.) I’d always been pretty sensitive about jokes such as that one, and I’d always pretended not to care when people told them, laughing along instead. Later, though, as I fumed about the incident afterwards, I suddenly came to the idea that my resentment might not have actually been justified.

See, I’d realized that I took offense at more, I still think there are definite boundanything that insulted me personally, but I aries. There’s a fine line between funny and was okay with everything else. Mild jokes plain rude. For the most part, as made at the expense of long as the sentiment of other groups of people a joke is good-natured didn’t bother me and not specifically as long as they intended to insult weren’t blatantly people, it should be insulting, while acceptable. Other the slightest jab people will have at my own race, their own standards gender, or relifor judging whether gious views made or not a joke goes too me uncomfortfar, but that’s mine, able. After thinkand it works for me. ing about this for I’ve realized that it’s a while, I decided just not worth it getting that I needed to worked up over every change the way I dealt single comment that I with those jokes, so I find vaguely offensive. began to look at them Besides that, it would be from a different point of impossible to ban all jokes that could posview. sibly upset someone; the reality is that there First off, I stopped taking them will always be people to make those jokes, so seriously; after all, most people and there will always be people to laugh only made them in fun, and they at them. Shows like “American Dad” and were meant to be lighthearted. “Family Guy” constantly ridicule people Eventually, when I laughed at those with various ethnicities, disabilities, relijokes, it wasn’t because I was trying gions, and disorders, and to avoid appearing uptight, it while they get into trouwas because I’d genuinely come ble for it just as frequentto appreciate them. ly, they’re still going strong Artwork by Joy Cope Of course, though I now acbecause people know that cept jokes about sensitive topics they have to take the jokes in them lightly.

speak out Discussion Board Each issue, students can submit responses to The Roar’s Speak Out forum. These questions will be posted on Facebook.

Question: What are your opinions on steroid usage? Samuel Raisor, sophomore: If it’s for medical reasons, I have no problem with it. But if someone were to use it outside of medical usage, that’s where the problem starts. Sean Venegas, junior: Steroids, in sports, make it unfair for the athlete who has the determination to work hard and be the best athlete they can be. Steroids are just a cheap way to make it to the top. Zach Smith, junior: I Taking steroids is cheating. It comes from the overwhelming desire to be better than a person really is, which shows a lack of self-confidence or lack of determination to succeed the right way. Add your opinion and see more responses: Friend Roar Newspaper on Facebook.

For example, any watcher of the “Simpsons” is familiar with the character Apu, the South Asian convenience store owner whose portrayal on the show has sparked much controversy. Most viewers understand that they’re not supposed to be laughing at his stereotypical traits, but at the sheer absurdity and extent of them. In essence, they’re pointing out how ridiculous stereotypes are, not making fun of them. Still, others will interpret the show differently and find Apu’s depiction offensive. I’m not going to argue, because we all have the right to judge these things for ourselves, and we’re all tolerant of them at different levels. Personally, on a scale from “That’s not even funny” to “Lighten up, it was just a joke,” I’d say that I’m somewhere in the middle, maybe leaning a little closer to the “lighten up” side. I try not to get offended easily, but I’ll still tell someone if I think one of their jokes isn’t okay. Since that day in sixth grade, my views on this topic have changed quite a bit, and in my opinion, they’ve changed for the better. All I ask now is that if you’re going to take a shot at Asians in front of me, an Asian, well…at least make it funny, and I might not go all ninja on you. Lisa is an assistant editor for The Roar. Do you also suffer from racial stereotypes? Share your opinion at the.roar.lliu@gmail. com


by merritt nolte-roth “Here It Comes”

friday, may 17, 2013

Social environment for LGBT peers harsh, unjust tiffany hammond assistant editor

High school is traditionally known as the time when you find your true self. Three years have flown past me, and I’ve come to the conclusion that instead of figuring themselves out, some people’s dilemmas stem from the fear of getting denied for who they have discovered themselves to be. Teens who realize they are gay or lesbian typically have an issue with this: the fight to be accepted as they are, the fear of being hated, the struggle of losing friends or even the support of family members, all because of an attraction to the same sex. I can’t relate to the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) group. However, when a good friend texts me saying “I wish I could change my sexuality,” I can’t help but wish everybody could understand how sexual preference is not a choice to some people. If people made this realization, it could prevent people from feeling so inadequate in life and as if they should want to change who they are. Some people who have come out to me are the most understanding, funny, loving people I know. It may seem silly to ask people to accept the concept of others loving whoever they love and marrying that person, when the majority of states in the U.S. find it unconstitutional. However, how are laws going to change if people don’t start changing them? If people don’t start altering their mindset, and consider that some people are attracted to the same sex and they cannot alter that? If people don’t realize the discrimination we as a country are promoting with unequal laws such as no gay marriage? America prides itself on the fact that all people are guaranteed “Life, Liberty, and The pursuit of happiness,” yet the government denies rights to people who, yes, may want to change past traditions, but nevertheless are still

human. Letting two people wed and love each other is doing no harm at all in my eyes. Because gay marriage is illegal, the law inhibits them from receiving any of the 1,138 benefits or responsibilities that marital status offers. These benefits include the right to leave work to care for an ill spouse, health insurance coverage, social security benefits, joint adoption and foster care, permission to make funeral arrangements for a deceased spouse and many more. They miss out on these benefits because their relationship doesn’t match up with traditional views. Although it may be considered a sin in some religions, I’m not asking anyone to be gay or alter their sexual orientation and commit this sin. I am simply suggesting that instead of condemning people and pushing them to understand you and your beliefs, benignly allow them to be who they are and try to understand them for a change. People should not have to try to adjust themselves to feel loved, to feel accepted and to feel worthy. In Macklemore’s song “Same Love,” he discusses how some people believe it is purely a decision, how they think it is “man made” and a “rewiring of a predisposition.” The people I know on a personal level that are gay, like the friend who sent me the text message above, struggle so much because they know most people don’t agree with homosexuality. Some are even afraid of coming out to family, the ones who are supposed to love them unconditionally, because they fear lack of support or getting disowned. Being gay should not impose such feelings of loneliness or unhappiness.  The people who are gay or lesbian, they didn’t decide one day to make life harder on themselves. They didn’t choose to be different, knowing the consequences that would come with it and the rights they would lose. They were born loving the same sex; that’s just who they are, so let us accept that. Tiffany is an assistant editor for The Roar. How do you feel about the environment we are creating for our LGBT classmates? Share your opinion with Tiffany at the.roar.



What’s on your summer bucket list that probably won’t get done?

“Skydiving. I want to do it, but it probably won’t get done because I am scared.”

Payal Agarwal, freshman

“I want to do everything in the Phineas and Ferb song.” Karly Waguespack, sophomore

“Try to sleep for a whole day straight.” Liana Nichols, junior


Happy Friday: have a puzzle.

“Punch a shark on the face.” Have you ever driven without a license? No

Yes, because I don’t have a license Yes, other

Alex Carrillo, senior


Yes, because I left mine at home

puzzle courtesy of:

rants &raves

the roar | viewpoints | 9

“I always say I’m going to read five books, but I have four kids so it never happens.”

26% 30%


583 students surveyed

Lindsay Zahn, psychology teacher

10 | opinions | the roar

{opposing viewpoints} YES

friday, may 17, 2013

Do viral videos accurately represent our culture?


by Nicole Farrell, sports editor

by Leah Crisman, entertainment editor

Viral videos are just too seductive. I can’t resist them, even when it’s late (or perhaps especially when it’s late) and even when responsibilities call. Each one gives me a little rush and a chance to revel in the shared joy of millions of equally hapless viewers, so, in a general sense, could there really be any harm in clicking through the next one and the next one and the next one? [insert alarming study that shows clicking on the next video shortens your lifespan and gives you gingivitis] As someone with little self-control, I fall victim to the devastating allure of viral videos far too much and I hardly think I’m the only one. And please, let’s face it: unless you produced the video and are swimming in cash from ads, viral videos are pretty well useless. I could talk about the few exceptions, about the rise of Kony 2012 or the fall of that abusive coach from Rutgers, but that would imply that most viral videos are meaningful and change the world, which is clearly not the case. What would Henry David Thoreau (who considered voting the vehicle of change for lazy people) think of trustafarian hipsters calling themselves activists for commenting something like “THIS HAS TO STOP NOW!” on a viral video? Most viral videos however don’t even have a rallying point for slacktivists. I don’t want to be the Negative Nelly here, but the majority of viral videos only a) entertain you for approximately the amount of time it takes to eat an Oreo and b) make people who really don’t need to be famous famous. I refer to the motley collection of YouTube royalty. The ones who fit into this weird state of famousness for either doing something really stupid or really cute (or really sexual, but I won’t go into that). Call me unrealistic (or you can just stick with Negative Nelly, that’s okay too), but I don’t want to encourage that kind of intensive exposure. It seems wrong somehow to have that as an example of success. Perhaps it’s just human nature. I’m not saying that viral videos should be cut out of our lives. That would be the same as asking Buddy Reed to stop liking the eye of the tiger: it’s just not going to happen. However, I do think a certain amount of restraint is called for. Just try to remember that with every view or comment or like, you support something that can grow to reflect our culture, for better or for worse.

In the past, a cultured lifestyle was one filled with tasteful music, classical art and a film selected from the Criterion Collection. Today, being caught up in the culture means both checking the newspaper and your news feed, Googling life’s deepest questions and perhaps the most popular pastime as of late: watching YouTube videos. Everyone with a computer and/or brain knows the drill: type a keyword or phrase into the search bar and a video uploaded by someone across the globe or right next door will pop up. This website, a hub of news, comedy and tutorial videos, is also home of a pop culture item of the past six years: the viral video. A random video of talent, error or insanity becomes instantly popular, shared with a single click or tilt of the screen. The (in)famous music video by Rebecca Black was a worldwide success (miss) literally overnight, Justin Bieber started off as a bald kid in a bathroom and more recently, some random white guys projected themselves into the spotlight with their questionable Harlem Shake dance, which was mimicked in dozens of other videos. Is this viral video genre pointless and a waste of time? No. Are some of these videos of questionable appropriateness? Admittedly, yes. But just as the Beats of the fifties and Jackson Pollock defied current standards and raised controversy, the videos change culture and the way its art is perceived. Culture is ever-changing, pushing the molds of morality and popularity. The viral video is a part of the technology age: where pop culture evolves with a single download or clicked link. With these videos, potential stars have an outlet to broadcast their talent, in the hopes of being discovered. Dumb dances and skits are publicized, redefining the “dumb” label as they make hundreds of millions of people laugh or smile. Pop culture is what’s happening now, what people are passionate about, what anyone can talk about. Culture is significant to individuals first, then accumulates in the masses. Personally, I enjoy some Beethoven. But I can dig some Justin Bieber. I still laugh sadistically as Scarlett takes that tumble. I shake my head at the Harlem Shake. But as I see videos being discussed and posted, I marvel at our adaptation to our mediums, and I see what defines us. For some, it’s an appreciation of Picasso, but for others, it’s a belly laugh at a baby panda sneezing. And as long as true appreciation lasts, so does the significance.

student responses. The Roar surveyed 104 students to learn their opinions on viral videos. Would you upload an embarrassing video of yourself for the chances of it going viral?

77% 23%



“ “

What do you think about viral videos being a part of your culture?

Honestly, it’s just for amusement. [It’s] what many people use to waste time or laugh [at.]

No 74%

Yes 26%

Do you watch/look for viral videos?

Veronica Juarez, freshman

Viral videos simply represent the human characteristic of wanting to share information and are part of today’s culture simply because today’s culture is also a product of silly, illogical human nature.

Zeke Hsieh, junior

How much time do you spend every evening on video websites such as YouTube?

60% spend no time to 15 minutes.

14% spend more than an hour.

13% spend 15-30 minutes.

13% spend 30- 1 hour.

the roar | snapshots | 11

friday, may 17, 2013

ine tuning

Pops Concert presents challenges, excitement for orchestra students

annie zhang | assistant editor Intense music with occasional drumbeats in the midst of the string ensemble resounded through the hallways. Not exactly Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5, but rather more like “The Avengers.” No, this was not the orchestra gone wild; they were just preparing for their annual Pops Concert. Like its name suggests, the Pops Concert is a concert that the Orchestra plays every year where they play popular modern and pop songs. The concert was held on May 3, and the Orchestra played a large variety of songs, ranging from “Les Misérables” to the Jersey Boys to Coldplay. “We usually just play classical music, or basically anything that’s not pop music. [The Pops Concert] is the only time of the year that we get to play pop,” freshman Stephanie Palazzolo said. Orchestra director Jane McCormick explained that the Pops Concert was a time for the students to have fun and play something different. “Whenever you think of orchestra, you think of

Seniors Taylor Rowland and Shane Rae and juniors Nick Lindner and Preston Cunha concentrate on their parts during the concert. Rowland also played the electric bass in a few pieces during the show. PHOTO BY ANNIE ZHANG

classical music and standard repertoire, but pop music brings something new,” senior Tiffany Wu said. Because of the different genre of music, drums, electric basses and a synthesizer were added. “They make the music interesting, and spice things up,” junior James Amdor said. “It sounds more upbeat, too.” Since the songs are so familiar, following the music became much easier for the audience. “Everyone knows [pop music], so they’re more into it,” Amdor said. “Which means they [can also] tell when someone messes up.” While listening to the songs might be easier for the audience, playing them turned out to be quite troublesome for the orchestra sometimes. “Getting the rhythm of pop music right is hard,” Wu said. “It’s filled with random rhythmic correlations and configurations and it’s difficult to get them together.” However, since these songs are all from movies or on the radio, the problem was quickly solved. “Technique is definitely harder for pop music, but it

helps if you know what it sounds like, so it’s easier to pick up,” Amdor explained. Yet, while the Pops Concert allowed the orchestra students to try something different, not all prefer it. “In an orchestra setting, I actually prefer playing classical music because I can feel more emotion and life,” Wu said. Palazzolo and Amdor, on the other hand, prefer playing pop rather than classical music. “​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​I can relate to it more,” Palazzolo said. “A lot of the pop music that we play are from movies and it makes me pay a lot more attention to the background music in movies.” The concert was also the last orchestra concert of the year, and for Wu, her last high school orchestra concert. She was given the solo for the concert, which she called “an honor to have had.” “I think this concert was one of our most exciting ones because of the great variety of pop music we performed,” Wu said.

Senior Tiffany Wu performs a solo in the music to “Schindler’s List” at the Pops Concert on May 3. Wu has been playing the violin for eleven years. PHOTO BY ANNIE ZHANG

12 | student

friday, may 17, 2

life | the roar

Supplement, steroid use proves risky in spite of perceived benefits


e always hear about how girls face pressure from society to look a certain way. However, males have begun to face similar pressure―the pressure to boast slim bodies and defined muscles. Some boys, in an effort to trim their bodies and excel in their athleticism, turn to supplements and steroids to give them an extra edge. This edge, however, can come at a cost. Strength coach John Mitchell is opposed to his students using steroids, but understands the appeal. “Steroids are one way to overcome your body type. Steroids don’t make you stronger. What steroids do is they give you the ability to recover and work out harder than anybody else, but you still have to put the work in,” Mitchell said. Supplements are generally less harmful than steroids and prohormones, simply Those who do because their ingredients are less extreme on the endocrine system. Some common work for it, however, supplements are whey protein and creatine, both of which are intended to give see rapid results. Seathletes more strength and endurance in their workouts. nior Greg Davis* took “d-bol,” a steroid in pill-form, for 20 days last summer, allowing

laura everett & dana branham editor-in-chief & managing editor

what’s the difference?

[between steroids, supplements, and prohormones]

least harmful

him to gain 15 pounds. Before taking steroids, senior Paul Wright* had trouble lifting over 150 pounds. With “something to push [him] over that,” he was able to lift 175 pounds, he said. In the future, Wright is considering taking another cycle to push himself beyond 200 pounds, he said. Regardless of the benefits, Mitchell said that it is a dangerous attraction. “The dangerous thing for high school kids is that they’re not getting the good stuff; they’re getting the dangerous stuff,” Mitchell said. In addition to the drastic effects on one's physical health, steroid use is also linked with the emotional toll that the added testosterone provides—the infamous “‘roid rage.” “The other thing is the drastic mood changes that come with steroid use. We’ve all heard about the ‘roid rage,’” Mitchell said. “When you up the testosterone, some athletes like that because it gives them that edge, that aggressiveness when it comes to their sport.” The “roid rage” is quite real, multiple steroid-users at Consol report, saying that even the slightest inconveniences would be a cause of over-exaggerated anger. “Little things [got to me], like my mom will say the wrong thing at the wrong time and I’ll just want to hit her,” Davis said.

the roar | student life | 13

day, may 17, 2013

senior Paul g over 150 push [him] 175 pounds, is considerush himself

ts, Mitchell ction. high school ng the good erous stuff,”

c effects on use is also hat the adde infamous

rastic mood d use. We’ve e,’” Mitchell erone, some es them that n it comes to

eal, multiple , saying that ces would be ger. ike my mom wrong time avis said.

specs on

steroids Anabolic steroids replicate

human sex hormones like testosterone and estrogen. They are often taken illegally to alter one’s physical appearance. • Anabolic steroids may be prescribed by a doctor in cases of delayed puberty, cancer, or AIDS. • Often, drug abusers take 10 to 100 times the amount that would be prescribed by a health official.

In addition to steroids, Wright has experimented with pre-workouts, whey protein, amino acids, and other widelyavailable prowducts aimed at gaining weight and bulking up. Junior Hunter Hays attested to receiving help from similar supplements. “There’s kind of a foggy line in between steroids and then supplements and prohormones,” Hays said. “Those are the ones you can go down to Total [Nutrition] or GNC and be like, ‘Alright, I want to get that one.’ They’re not cheap, and they’re really really complicated.” While many kids at Prohormones are precursors to hormones, Consol use supplements meaning that when they enter the body, such as whey protein, they can become similar to anabolic Mitchell forbids students steroids, and can be damaging to one's from bringing supplehealth, especially for young people. ments to school. Overall―supplements or steroids―it wasn't a positive expeAnabolic steroids are synthetic steroids that resemble rience for Davis. testosterone. They can be prescribed by doctors to “Afterwards, I promote tissue growth, but are often abused by athletes felt kind of guilty,” and people wanting either to gain muscle or improve Davis said. “Just betheir overall appearance. cause of the person I am, I’d rather gain strength on my own.” PHOTO ILLUSTRATION OF A NON-STEROID USER BY DANA BRANHAM

most harmful

• Common side effects include mood swings, manic behavior, insomnia, irritability, and irrational judgment. • For men, steroids may cause testicle shrinking, breast growth, hair loss, a heightened risk of testicular cancer, and infertility. • In 2005, 5% of high schoolers had tried steroids. In 2012, only 1.8% had experimented with steroids. • Improper use of steroids can cause stunted growth, kidney impairment/ failure, liver damage, and heart failure/stroke. • Teenage girls may experience a permanently deepened voice, loss of hair, breast shrinkage, and menstrual cycle problems. source:

14 | people| the roar


friday, may 17, 2013

“Dr. Phil”

a gift for Joe


on “White Girls”, One Direction and soft grunge

Artist expresses through style, develops Internet presence isabel drukker | opinions editor

“Lana & A$AP Rocky” unity and acceptance

the art of the tweet “Crystal Castles album ‘III’

created in post-concert depression

@simormoncowell MSTROMB Look at “White Girls” on Instagram. Make it your wallpaper.


ith one eye open, one eye closed, her mouth spread far apart and her face tucked in to create multiple chins, junior Meredith Stromberg looks like an upset bird. “It’s a really disgusting selfie,” her prom date senior Joe Spelce said. “[It’s] art; I think she’s brilliant.” Stromberg’s painting ‘White Girls’ depicts said selfie as a way to satirize her own way of life. But mostly, Stromberg just wanted to have fun painting it. “I like to do weird things sometimes,” Stromberg said. With this habit, Stromberg has created countless realistic portraits, won the TAPPS art contest her sophomore year and become one of the first fans Harry Styles followed on Twitter because he liked her portraits of One Direction. Stromberg hopes to attend to University of North Texas to study art before ultimately moving to San Diego. Having once visited the Pacific beach area, Stromberg recalls the youth and care-free vibes from locals and hopes to work as a free lance artist there one day. “Her art is just a really big part of her,” Spelce said. “[It’s] her way of rebelling; [it’s how] she gets her freedom away from her normal life and school life.”

Spelce describes Stromberg as himself in “girl form,” saying that their similar personalities fuel not only their friendship, but their art as well. “She’s an amazing artist,” Stromberg’s friend junior Anjali Yadav said. “I think she’s really, really talented [and] she’s really weird, to say the least.” Stromberg and Yadav send each other pictures of interesting art they’ve found, as well as their own works in progress and usually send each other feedback. Through this process, Stromberg and Yadav share their talent and come out with works that seem entirely of their own. “It’s always been my way of expressing myself-through my art,” Stromberg said. “Ever since I was little it’s what I’ve done.” Just as she is naturally an artist, Stromberg is a naturally social person, as verified by her popular online presence on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr. For this reason, Stromberg wants to use her art as a way to touch others. “Art is something that you can make speak to so many different people,” Stromberg said. “[When] you do something about a certain emotion, there are so many people from different backgrounds who can feel that emotion and can relate. [Art] is something that brings people together.” Besides her art, Stromberg

expresses herself verbally through her Twitter account, in which she illustrates her dry sense of humor by tap dancing the line of what is and is not considered copasetic in polite society. “My dark lipstick goes with a lot of things: my whole wardrobe, my soul, my sense of humor,” Stromberg tweeted on April 21st. While followers may retweet for the sardonic quips, Stromberg says that she sees her Twitter more as a representation of her own self-acceptance. “On social media I just joke around and say whatever isn’t socially acceptable,” Stromberg said. “[Being loud on Twitter] just came with accepting myself and learning who I was throughout high school. I feel like you should just say whatever’s on your mind; never apologize for something you say.” Through her online presence, Stromberg has expressed her personal sense of style as well, and has thus faced many a time the label of being ‘soft grunge.’ Whether this reflects the public’s opinion on her ever changing hair; which this year alone has gone from (unnatural) dirty blonde, to platinum blonde, to a shocking pink, to brown and red ombre before retreating to its present rusty red; or simply her choice of dress, Stromberg meets each comment with equal disdain.

“The girls who call themselves soft grunge try so hard,” Spelce, who nicknamed her ‘Grunge Goddess’ said. “Meredith is an actual soft grunge girl, so she denies the fact that she is or has the potential to be [soft grunge.]” Stromberg teasingly calls Spelce ‘Grunge Lord’ but she never embraces the name herself. “I don’t label myself, I’m just me,” Stromberg said. “[Soft grunge people] are so annoying, like you and your coffee and cigarettes… I hate how there are formulas to follow to be labeled as things.” Stromberg explains that when she wears her Doc Martins or dyes her hair though, she’s not looking for someone to act rebellious or anger others. She just wants to be happy. “I feel like all throughout life I’ve just been trying to touch as many people as I can,” Stromberg said. “I don’t really think that there’s a job I have to do like a little working bee. I just want to be free and do whatever I feel like doing at the moment.” Stromberg admits this is why California appeals to her and why she awaits that time as a free lance artist so much anticipation. Until then, she plans on dying her hair a few more times. “She just doesn’t care,” Spelce said. “She doesn’t.”

the roar | people | 15

friday, may 17, 2013




Warped Improv Troupe to match wits against faculty tonight channing young | assistant editor WIT vs FIT is a chance for the students and faculty to interact with each other on a level they would never be allowed to otherwise. “I think it [WIT vs FIT] allows us to break down the barriers with the students,” Roy Rodriguez said. “We’re on stage together and we’re having a fun time and that’s a really unique experience. Plus you get to make fun of students in public, and people pay money for that so it’s even better.” Ty Thomas and Kyle Eddens, the co-captains for WIT, began to prepare for the upcoming performance by holding auditions. “We score them on a point system of funny versus not funny things, and appropriate versus inappropriate,” Eddens said. After auditions the students begin to rehearse. “We play all kinds of games, there’s games we can play when you can only talk in questions there’s one where you’re investigating a murder and you can only talk in gibberish,” Eddens said. Jackie Shoemake, a judge for the competition, enjoys sitting in on the rehearsals. “It’s so much fun. I mean laughter is the best medicine after a long day,” Shoemake said. “They’re so creative and amazing.” One of Shoemake’s favorite part about watching re-

hearsals is seeing how the students and faculty interact. hyper?’,” Eddens said. “I never thought I’d be rewarded for “It’s fun to watch them go back and forth,” Shoemake being so obnoxious sometimes, or being able to do an acsaid. “They’re trash talking each other the whole time, and cent, or make up a story on the spot, and now it’s like, WIT.” make jokes about each other. The faculty is great, they put The actual performance is held in the auditorium and is themselves out there and make fools of themselves, even hosted by senior Victoria Fazzino. Fazzino assigns the games though they’re teachers and we’re supposed to maintain a to the competitors. Their performance is judged on two difcertain level of decorum.” ferent point systems. The students and faculty give each other tips and cri“There are three judges, and we get points based on tiques as well during rehearsals, “Sometimes the kids do what the judges say,” Rodriguez said. help us,” Rodriguez said, “sometimes they are a little bit At intermission and at the end of the show the audience more knowledgeable about this stuff.” gets to vote as well, by filling the bucket for FIT or WIT with “It’s a theater function, but money. its not really a show, you just go “The one with the most “You get to make fun of students donations and have super fun with you’re gets an abundant with,” Thomas said, “and it’s a in public, and people pay money amount of points, and the stugreat stress reliever.” dents usually get a bunch of doRodriguez loves having the for that so it’s even better.” nations and end up winning the opportunity to be involved in show,” said Rodriguez. “I think sponsor Roy Rodriguez we’re funnier, but the kids will theater again, even if it’s not an actual performance. say otherwise.” “I was a theater major at A&M, but I stopped doing it at Eddens encourages everyone to come out and audition A&M because they don’t have a really good theater depart- for WIT next year. ment,” Rodriguez said. “So this was kind of like my revival “Hey, if you’re really good at making stuff up and back to theater and I really love improv, it’s a really cool op- you’re really good at making weird faces and voices portunity.” come to WIT and we’ll love you,” Eddens said. “Also if Improv just comes naturally for Eddens. you’re the funniest kid, or you think you’re the funni“When I was a kid people would be like, ‘why do you est kid in class come to WIT and we’ll prove you wrong.” talk in so many weird voices?’ or ‘why are you so weird and

STARRING: Kyle Eddens as

Superior Cowboy

Ty Thomas as


Conneley Sears as


Seth Anderholm as

Secret Sauce

JD Rockwell as Dogtag

16 | people | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

slacking off or studying on PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY JANET NI

Contrasting views on work ethic shape graduates’ futures janet ni | photography editor

seniors Jacob Ayres and Wanda Lipps share an average week in their lives Monday: hang out with his friends Tuesday: hang out with his friends Wednesday: work, hang his out with friends Thursday: hang out with his friends Friday: hang out with his friends, relax

Monday-Wednesday: school, robotics until 6, homework Thursday: school, robotics until 8, homework Friday: school, robotics until 6, catch up with family

Jacob says he never studies or does any homework.

Wanda says she works on homework until 10-11 pm.

Saturday: work, hang out with his friends


b co (He had senioritis and wouldn’t show up for his headshot.)

n Wa

Sunday: work, hang out with his friends

Weekends: most weekends are robotics related (a work day or event), homework, applications (scholarship/ college), leisure time


While most seniors may sleep during class and let homework go undone, senior Wanda Lipps listens in class attentively and takes notes, working to maintain her grades and study for her Advanced Placement tests. It seems as though Lipps has found her personal cure for “senioritis.” “I just am self-motivated by a sense of pride,” Lipps said. “[I feel like] I can actually do something meaningful.” While a few power students such as Lipps have survived senior year, other seniors have taken a different approach, like senior Jacob Ayres. “I’m not sure that I ever really cared that much [about school]. Maybe if I had to put a year on it, I would say junior year about mid-semester,” Ayres said. Ayres was named “Worst Case of Senioritis” in this year’s yearbook Senior Limelights and rightfully so, as his grades have taken a turn for the worse. Yet, Ayres expresses no remorse over his lack of effort this year. “I have no regrets,” Ayres said. “I should have tried less earlier, maybe.” Ayres explained one of the sources of his lack of motivation. “I feel like I’m not learning anything,” Ayres said. “I just feel like most of what I’m doing here is a waste of my time.” He completed his college applications and was accepted to Mays Business School at Texas A&M University. “I heard a lot of people complain about how they couldn’t do it, and I was just like, ‘well I didn’t do anything through high school and I [was accepted],’” Ayres said. Because of Ayres’s lack of effort, it may seem that luck has attributed to his high GPA, but he feels otherwise.

“I would like to think it was because I was smart, but other people might disagree,” Ayres said. “Luck doesn’t last four years.” Conversely, senior Wanda Lipps has not risked relying on luck and has retained her work ethic throughout her senior year. Lipps is currently enrolled in all AP classes and was robotics president during robotics season, she said. Her involvement in robotics increased her already considerable workload, especially last semester. “Last semester was crazy. Sometimes I wouldn’t get home until nine, and I’d still have to do all my homework,” Lipps said. “[During college applications] I got 20 hours [of sleep] a week during robotics season.” Lipps has decided to go to University of Pennsylvania for the Management and Technology program, which only accepts fifty students a year. Though college applications are over, Lipps still works hard to maintain her GPA. “I do kind of agree that [GPA] doesn’t mean too much anymore, but University of Pennsylvania still does want my transcript, so it’s not like I can slack off,” Lipps said. “I’m not exactly sure what the cutoff is to have my admission taken away from me, but I don’t want to find out.” Lipps feels it is her sense of accomplishment that propels her to continue to work hard in school. Lipps also shared her thoughts on slacking off for extended periods of time. “To me, I view it like time wasted,” Lipps said. “I can’t really sit and do nothing. I’m not one of those people who can sit and do nothing and not feel disgusted with myself.” It has become quite clear that the effort put forth by different students at Consol varies dramatically. “To me, I can’t really lose because I don’t care at all,” Ayres said.

the theroar roar| |people people| |17 17

friday, may 17, 2013

Backpacking, rock climbing provide opportunities to hone skill rachel kagle | executive editor Defying the current generation’s tendency to devote their time to computers and hit television shows, posed indoors for hours upon hours, senior Mitchell Jackson and juniors Henry Davis and Sam Solcher spend their time elsewhere. “I started backpacking when I was eleven,” Jackson said. “You conquer the useless going out in open mountains and carry all of the stuff you need and walk around.” Solcher also goes backpacking, typically in Colorado or Montana, he said. He started two years ago, in Yellowstone as “a test run.” “Normally it’s my oldest sister, my dad and I,” Solcher said. “When we do shorter walks, it’s a whole family thing.” Solcher explains that he always includes food, a hammock, a water purifier and bear spray in his backpack. “It’s kind of cool to be away from people, being a wild man,” Solcher said. Jackson concurs. “I like the solitude,” Jackson said. “It’s my favorite part.” However, to begin backpacking, Jackson said that you only need a backpack with a hip belt and shoes with arch support. In addition to the items Solcher brings, he also includes a spork, a rubber squishy bowl, a rather large knife and matches. “I go by myself because most people can’t keep up,” Jackson said. “You don’t really accomplish anything but you feel like you’ve accomplished something. I’ve developed quite the mental toughness from doing say, a marathon every day 4 days in a row, carrying 40 pounds on my back.” Henry Davis does not partake in backpacking; however he sometimes goes climbing with Solcher. “My brother and I built a rock wall inside of our house,” Davis said. “We do a lot of mountain biking and we’re building trails right now at our house. We are also building dirt jumps that will be open to the public for free and people can ride them.” The bouldering wall in the Davis household is about 12 feet, intended for technique and technical climbing. Davis explains that his brother amplifies his own ambition. “We would look at magazines and see things that we would like to do,” Davis said. “So we did.”

the experiences of sam solcher & mitchell jackson

“[I] went kayaking in San Juan Island. You carry all your stuff in a kayak and then you kayak from island to island,” Solcher said.

“I usually get harassed by boars. Once I was in my hammock and one knocked into all of my guide wires and my hammock tarp. That was pretty scary,” Jackson said.


18 | health

& rec | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013



Unlicensed drivers pose threat on the road

tiffany hammond | assistant editor ties.

*Names have been changed to protect the sources’ identi-

Little Danny Smith* could not yet reach the pedals of a car, much less see over the dashboard, until his grandmother let him team up with her and sit on her lap in the front seat. With her in control of the gas and brakes, Danny was in charge of the steering wheel. Finally, when he grew up and was able to reach the pedals, he practically already knew how to drive. Many kids start out like this or are taught by their parents before fifteen, the eligible age for a permit, and because of this, they feel confident enough to drive on the roads without a license. For some students, being allowed to only drive if they’re with an adult for six months after taking a lengthy driving class is an inconvenience. “I’m going to take the permit class [eventually]...” freshman, Jackson Brown* said. “I haven’t really had much time because baseball and all that.” Not only can it be a hassle to fit into students’ lives, but it can also be challenging for the adult who must drive them

to and from class and then drive a certain amount of hours with them once they achieve their permit. “My mom was a single parent, and we moved from out of state,” senior Danny Smith* said. “It was just easier for me to just go ahead and drive because she wasn’t there to take me to a lot of places.” However, for some teenagers their lack of a license to drive legally or driver to drop them off at class has not stopped them from attending Austin Driving School in College Station. “There’s been kids in the past who drive by themselves to go to class,” Bennie Schertz, a teacher at the school, said. Not getting a license may be easier in some cases, but a police officer will not accept that as an excuse if caught driving license-less. “[When caught with only a permit] they could get a ticket for that or a ticket for no insurance. In some cases, it may take longer to get a license,” Schertz said. “[One kid] only had his permit [and received] a lot of fines and [got in] a lot of trouble.” Depending on how one drives, he or she may not need to worry about getting pulled over by a cop with no license to show.

“Sometimes I think about [getting caught], but I try not to think about it when I’m driving. I just drive,” Brown said. “I stay calm when I see a cop and don’t really get paranoid about it.” For some people who drive without a license, having to pay off tickets or deal with the police doesn’t faze them. “I’ve gotten pulled over several, several times,” Smith said. “One time, I gave them my permit, and they didn’t notice [that it wasn’t a license]. And one time I didn’t have a permit or a license or anything, and it was just a charge of $100, [which is] less than if you were to be caught with a permit.” When caught without a license and given a ticket, paying money isn’t the only way to take care of it. “[An officer] made [one student] take the whole class over when he was caught without a license,” Shertz said. Sometimes defensive driving and teen court are also an option. Some drivers who don’t take the permit class before driving on the road realize the consequences later. “Had I done the whole drive 6 months with a parent thing, I would’ve been a much less aggressive driver,” Smith said.

let’s get legal

18.2% of fatal crashes involved a driver who was unlicensed or invalidly licensed. These crashes resulted in the deaths of 21,049 people.

1. Complete a College Station, Texas 2. Have

3. Make an appointment

4. Take the College Station,

approved driving training course.

and head on down to DPS.

Texas road test.

your College Station, Texas Instruction Permit for 6 months.


the roar | sports | 19

friday, may 17, 2013

covering all the bases

Versatile senior baseball player encourages team through difficult season


michelle liu & shilpa saravanan features editor & news editor

yle Nelson is an all-around guy. A senior shortstop, he’s spent the last two years switching back and forth between his current position and second base. “He’s very flexible,” senior teammate Gabe Sager said. “He just kind of fits in where he needs to fit in, and benefits us where we’re lacking.” Although Nelson doesn’t display typical traits of a leader, his quiet presence and work ethic both on the field and off set an example for his teammates. “He’s figured it out: hard work pays off. And he’s done that,” head coach Chase Mann said. Nelson’s teammates know him as the guy who works hard but has fun,

who plays hard but remains relatively silent otherwise. “He definitely leads by action,” Sager said. “Maybe not by voice, but he definitely gets the job done and sets an example for us.” Nelson humbly downplays his own leadership skills. “I’m not really the loudest guy. I don’t get in the group huddle and yell and scream and all that,” Nelson said. “It’s mainly just trying to do the right thing and keeping a good effort all throughout practice and games, keeping your head up and not getting discouraged.” On Apr. 23, Nelson won the first Brian Bachmann Legacy Scholarship, an award commemorating both Nelson’s upstanding character and the late Officer Bachmann’s love of baseball.

Armed with this scholarship, Nelson plans to attend Texas A&M in the fall to pursue veterinary medicine. Despite not planning to play baseball in college, Nelson has not put any less effort into the team this year. “As a teammate, he’s really hardworking, always trying to do better and better, and picking everyone up,” senior teammate Zach Norwood said. “We can rely on him on the field. He always has drive.” Nelson might not be “a big goofaround guy,” as Mann says, but he certainly knows how to enjoy the game. “He’s one of those kids who can do what he’s asked and still have fun doing it, which is definitely unique,” Norwood said.

Senior Kyle Nelson tags out a Hutto runner during a game on March 4. Nelson recently won the Brian Bachmann Legacy Scholarship. PHOTO PROVIDED BY JULIE KENNEDY.

Varsity Record: Won: 16 Lost: 15 Tied: 1


Junior Varsity Record: Won: 17 Lost: 10 Tied: 1

Senior Connor Fink:

“I felt like as a team we grew together as friends and as teammates.”

20 | sports | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

Girls golf team bonds, learns despite rough season eva araujo | assistant editor When it comes to girls golf, the game is second priority. This team is all about supporting each other through thick and thin, par to par. Mike Terral recruited junior Kambrie Kissmann her freshman year. She took a risk by opting for golf over softball. Kissman wanted a team with unity. She found that in golf. “I decided it sounded more interesting to play golf and there was a better chance of me making the team,” Kissmann said. “I knew there [would] be [fewer] people, and it would be a lot more fun because you get to know people a lot better. The games are also more time consuming so you have more fun with it because you spend more time doing it.” The team is small, but junior Randi Miller says that is one of the many reasons why she enjoys the sport. “I love being outdoors, and the friendships that we have made are great,” Miller said. “With other sports you hear about the drama and the chaos, but we don’t really have that. I couldn’t ask for better friends, or a better team. We are definitely a family.” Golf has not only been a unifying experience for this team, but according to Madison Hanson, it has also taught the girls basic life fundamentals. “Golf has taught me to be a better individual,” Hanson said. “ A lot of people cheat in golf because it is really easy to cheat, so you have to be able to be the good person and tell the truth on your score.” Miller adds that golf has mainly taught her leadership values. Being a part of the oldest class on the team, she feels a certain

obligation to lead the team through the year. “We teach the younger and less experienced ones that come through and it has definitely personally taught me leadership skills. You  have to help them out instead of being the one that needs help. You are the one teaching them rules and making them feel welcome. It’s a responsibility,” Miller said, Kissmann admits to not having the best scores as a team, but she also says the progress the girls have made is astounding. “We are competing with some of the best teams in the state, so compared to them we are not doing well,” Kissmann said. “But over the last couple of years, we have improved so much. You are playing against yourself and you’re not playing against other people really so you are focused on yourself and making yourself better.” Hanson explained the relationship the coach and the team have, and it is a solid one. “He’s pretty tough on us, but that’s only because he wants us to become better players,” Hanson said. “At the end of the day we just love him to death.” Terral said coaching is his life and what he has been called to do. Proud of his team, he said he couldn’t coach a better group of golfers. “I’ve been coaching for 40 years and I feel like it’s what God wants me to do with my life,” Terral said. “I am really blessed in that regard that the girls are all nice ladies and have a concern for each other. It’s a quality that you don’t always see in adults, much less in kids and it’s very refreshing to see a group of girls that care about each other so much. I want to be able to look back and say I love this sport, I love this team, I was compassionate and I worked hard to teach these girls the game.”


District Position: 6th in District 12-5A

girls golf

Latest Results: 3rd in Bryan tournament 5th in Victoria tournament

Top Scorers: Kambrie Kissmann Randi Miller Madison Hanson Caroline Zerbe

Sophomore Shelby Lancaster:

“Golf is new to me. I just wanted to experience something else, and I really enjoy it.”

the roar | sports | 21

friday, may 17, 2013

in the


A&M Consolidated competed at the Regional Championships at Round Rock High School on March 27 & 28.

flipping fantastic

Gymnast progresses to state meet, sets example for teammates rojas oliva | assistant editor Thousands of children start gymnastics while in preschool. However, most don’t continue for the next fourteen years of their life. Few qualify for state four years in a row. Even fewer place sixth in girls beam at state and qualify for nationals, and practically no one accomplishes all of this while taking AP classes and participating in cheer and pole-vaulting. Meet senior Maggie Drummond. “Whenever I was little, my biggest motivator was to beat my sister because she was two and a half years older than me so she was always a few levels ahead of me,” Drummond said. “I wanted to get to her level. I just kept going, [and] loved it ever since.” After her older sister quit, Drummond found new motivation in her passion towards gymnastics. “I loved the sport,” Drummond said. “It had been with me my entire life and it’s kind of hard to quit something you’ve been in for so long and you know you’ll regret [quitting].” Drummond’s favorite part of gymnastics is learning new skills. Nailing a move for the first

time is an extremely rewarding experience for her. “It’s something that you watched when you’re little,” Drummond said. “You see Olympic gymnasts do this and you want to get that but probably [will not]. Then you [perform] it in practice and it’s the first time you’ve done it and it’s just a really exciting moment.” However, Drummond has also found motivation in the people that surround her. Her parents have played a significant role for her all fourteen years. “They’ve definitely been really supportive ever since I got into it. I don’t think when I [started] my parents expected me to push through fourteen years of it but they travel to state, they travel to a bunch of meets, my mom [has] had to wake up at horrible times in the morning to try and take me to gymnastic meets,” Drummond said. “They put all their effort into it, they took off work hours to see me and they spent money to get me into this; they’ve been really supportive.” Another serious part of her gymnastics career is girls’ gymnastics coach Julie Fought.

pictured above

“She’s very supportive, she’s a happy person all the time and she’s an amazing coach,” Drummond said. “She uses a more friendly encouraging approach, which works really well.” This environment, combined with Drummond’s natural skill, has led her to qualify to compete in the nationals competition on May 18. This competition will mark the end of Drummond’s gymnastics career as she is going to focus on a single sport - pole-vaulting - in order to have more scholarship opportunities at TCU. In preparation for nationals, Drummond will be increasing her practices and working harder. However, she is sad that this past state meet was her fourth year to qualify as an all-rounder, but her first year to go without her team. “It was really lonely walking out there just alone,” Drummond said. However, prospects are high for the team next year. “This is definitely a rebuilding year for us. We graduated a lot of seniors last year, but the team right now has tons of talent,” Fought said. “We just haven’t had enough time to get where I know we can

get, so next year will definitely be a better year.” Fought’s role as a coach goes beyond physical training. “Besides gymnastics and having the best skills they can have I hope that they are learning life lessons while they are in it. I hope that I’m being a positive influence on their life and they can take what they learn about hard work and discipline to other things,” Fought said. After so many years with this team, coach and parental support Drummond feels that she has learned some valuable lessons. “With hard work you can achieve anything, that’s what I’ve learned, because if you work hard in gymnastics you can get any skill,” said Drummond. Now Drummond plays the same role on her team as her sister used to play for her. “It’s easier to move up if you have somebody to look at and say ‘Oh, that’s the way I need to do that’,” Drummond said. “So I think maybe they had someone to look up to and then they [realize that they] can get those skills and work harder.”

Maggie Drummond executes a back handspring at her Monday practice. Drummond competes with Brazos Valley Gymnastics in addition to the Consolidated team. PHOTO BY RACHEL KAGLE

Maggie Drummond qualified to the State Meet finishing 2nd on the vault, 6th on bars, 5th on beam, 5th on floor and 3rd in the all-around.

Sophomore Shelby Billingsley (on Maggie):

She’s a leader and she’s obviously one of the better ones.

22 | entertainment | the roar

friday, may 17, 2013

get your

summer fix

TV shows offer vacation entertainment Supernatural reviewed by anne finch


Arrested Development reviewed by isabel drukker It’s “Arrested Development”: brilliant, addictive, witty and scintillating in every way. But like the word scintillating, it’s maybe too clever for its own good. The overall plot line from all three currently available seasons includes multiple arrests, the genius impersonation of a movie executive by a fifteen-year-old, a human flesh craving seal, an adopted child from Korea named “Hello,” light treason, a number of huge mistakes and an ever present banana stand. While all this is good and entertaining, it must be said that not everyone will laugh when the magician older brother says he’ll ‘circumvent’ around his mother when she’s in the way. Also, not everyone realizes that the seal that bites off the youngest son’s hand is a metaphorical representation of his mother, Lucille, who smothers him and makes his independence impossible. I don’t think anyone could notice (without research) the subtle reference the writers made to the copyright lawsuit that ensued when the hip-hop band “Arrested Development” took legal action. At the same time though, this show is a relief from reality television, ultra dramatic cooking shows and lame made-for-TV movies. The wit has been missed and knowing that “Arrested Development” is back (exclusively on Netflix) on May 26 honestly has helped me sleep at night. To the fans, this comeback means the continuation of all the inside jokes that have had to be repressed, it means the revival of saying “I’m a monster!” when the situation gets hairy and it’s the invitation to once again ask friends if they have any bags labeled “DEAD DOVE, Do Not Eat!!!” in their refrigerator. In short, this is salvation, and for those brave enough to think through the smarts of this show, this is a second chance to be a part of the fandom that knows that there is always money in the banana stand.

“Dad’s out on a hunting trip, and he hasn’t been home in a few days.” Thus begins the legacy of “Supernatural”, a CW supernatural (duh) drama that I spend entirely too much time watching. Although only a small collection of devoted and long-suffering fans still watch it, the show is famous for its ridiculously attractive cast as well as being simultaneously one of the silliest and most depressing shows on television. (Don’t make “the roof is on fire” jokes to fans. Just don’t do it.) “Supernatural” chronicles the tale of the Winchester brothers, Sam (Jared Padalecki) whose hugeness coupled with Padalecki’s inability to get a haircut has earned him the fan nickname “moose”, and Dean (Jensen Ackles), a smarttalking pretty boy whose voice gets progressively deeper with each season. After their mother’s mysterious (and graphic) death during their childhood, their mysteriously MIA father has raised them to hunt the supernatural. Season one begins with Sam reluctantly leaving law school to help Dean find their father and hunt down the demon thingy that killed their mother. Sam’s almost-fiancé, Jess, who dies at the end of the pilot, sets the standard for the show’s excellent track record of killing female characters. Over the ensuing eight seasons, (the season 8 finale was on May 15) the show morphed from a pretty straightforward supernatural monster-of-theweek show to a strangely convoluted drama, introducing angels and demons to the show’s mythology. From there it became…whatever it is now. I haven’t understood what’s going on since the sixth season. Here’s the thing about “Supernatural”: it’s a confusing, poorly-plotted, emotionally manipulative mess. The plots don’t make any sense, the characters pull conflict resolutions out of nowhere and the show takes itself way too seriously, but somehow not seriously enough. The show’s female characters exist solely as love interests or they die horribly. Often both. The only characters who die more often than the show’s rotating cast of disposable women are the protagonists themselves: the combined deaths of the two brothers is roughly 150. But my hugest problem with the show is that it’s insanely addictive: I started watching it because the internet wouldn’t shut up about it, and now I can’t stop. Someone help me.


Castle reviewed by nicole farrell It’s all about teamwork. In ABC’s “Castle”, playful worldfamous mystery novelist Richard Castle originally shadowed serious NYPD Detective Kate Beckett for inspiration for his books, but proved to be an invaluable asset to the crimesolving team due to years of research for his books. Castle and Beckett might be the headlining duo known for shared looks, light-bulb moment outbursts, and nabbing the killer time after time, but the ensemble cast as a whole is remarkably in sync, marking this funny and fresh crime procedural as one worth watching. Memorable, well-developed characters like the gruff and tough Detective Javier Esposito, his partner the cheery Detective Kevin Ryan, the sassy coroner Lanie Parish, and the stern police Captain Victoria Gates bring vital humor, bromance, laughter, and genuine enjoyment to the small screen. Even further, Castle’s daughter Alexis and mother Martha add warmth that can only come from family. Life is messy out in New York City: grammar mistakes happen and people get murdered. With Castle and Beckett and the crew at the twelfth Precinct, both are solved, with plenty of dramatic speculation and shenanigans. The show successfully played with the classic “willthey-won’t-they” question for four seasons, adding sexual tension and banter to the show’s dynamic. The latest season, which wrapped up May 13th, successfully wove Castle and Beckett’s journey as an official couple into their professional success. Season five was certainly a game-changer, but smart and fan-influenced writing kept all the spark and banter that defined the Castle/Beckett relationship in previous seasons. It’s a smart, unique show that makes you chuckle, sigh, and cry. Catch up this summer through the Netflix mailorder DVDs (it’s worth going through snail mail, trust me!) until the season six premiere this fall. I’ll just be over there, recovering from the finale.


friday, may 17, 2013

popsicle Watermelon Berry

Ingredients -5 cups (1.25 L) chunks of seedless watermelon -180 g pkg raspberries or 1 cup (250 mL) pitted cherries or chopped strawberries -10 ice pop molds, each about 1/3 cup (75 mL) Directions 1. In a blender or food processor, whirl watermelon and berries or cherries until very smooth. 2. Pour watermelon mixture into molds. If using wooden sticks, fill molds 2⁄3 full. If using plastic sticks with rims, fill molds full. 3. Freeze until firm, at least 6 hours or preferably overnight. Ice pops will keep well frozen, up to 2 weeks.


have a


quick change


1. Lay out your jeans on a flat surface and mark with chalk where you’re planning to cut. 2. Carefully use fabric shears and cut along your chalk line. 3. If you’re looking for the bleached effect, t h e r e a r e several ways to apply it. You can pour bleach Turn your directly on the fabric, spray it with bleach using a spray bottle, or jeans into use an old toothbrush to create the splattered effect. shorts in four 4. Make sure to wash the jeans off with cold water about five easy steps minutes after bleaching.


make a

the roar | @consol | 23

Create your own slip-n-slide at home this summer

All you need is a roll of heavy plastic, ten pool noodles, a sprinkler hose, and a couple rolls of peel-and-stick Velcro courtesy of /

1. To start, take the roll of sheet plastic and lay it out on your yard. Figure out which side is the top and place it facedown. 2. Lay the noodles around the perimeter of your plastic. Leave a foot or so between each noodle. 3. Next, starting at one end, take a noodle and lay it on the plastic a few inches in from the outside edge. Pull the plastic over the noodle as if you’re going to wrap it up, and get enough overlap so about an inch of the plastic from the edge touches the plastic on the other side of the noodle toward the middle. This is where you’ll be sticking the Velcro. 4. Attach a 2-inch strip of the Velcro to the plastic at each end and in the middle of each noodle so that the plastic wraps over and under the noodle and is attached back to itself. Do this for all the noodles until you have a berm all the way around. 5. Make sure you have a little slope and start running a hose at the top of the slide at the higher end. Or if you have one or more lawn sprinklers, use those. Use your regular hose to feed water into it and you’ve got a perfect shower down your slide.

24 | etcetera | the roar

On May 9, students filled both Cinemark and Premiere movie theaters to watch the premiere of “The Great Gatsby.” For most, appreciation for the novel arose during English III. Due to the English III AP test on May 10, juniors attended the movie the following day. “‘The Great Gatsby’ is my favorite book that we’ve read in an English class,” senior Jeana Nam said. “I’ve been looking forward to [the premiere].” She explained that although the movie was a bit of a disappointment, the experience was worth it. “Dressing up was my favorite part,” Nam said. “It was still fun and I’m glad I went.”

the great gatsby


friday, may 17, 2013

& entertainment

spring show

Senior Rachel Welch dances in the Bengal Belle’s spring show on May 10. This was the last performance for seniors like Welch. “Spring show is my favorite event of the year,” Welch said. “I loved dancing with these girls one last time! It is not the dancing that I will miss the most, but rather the friendships!” PHOTO PROVIDED BY LIZ WILLIAMS. Seniors Jeana Nam and Victoria Fazzino wait in costume for the premiere of The Great Gatsby. PHOTO BY JANET NI.

acapocalypse Seniors Ryan Kreider, Callum England and Emily Venuti along with juniors Hannah Ridgway and Kelsey Kipp perform a cappella with other Vocal Ensemble members at Grace Bible Church on May 13. PHOTOS BY JANET NI.

Vol. 18 No. 6  

The sixth issue of The Roar newspaper for the 2012-2013 school year.

Vol. 18 No. 6  

The sixth issue of The Roar newspaper for the 2012-2013 school year.