By and for the students of Guilderland Central High School
Volume 64 Issue 1
Guilderland Center, NY 12085 October 2012
Photo courtesy of Sam Pitkin / The Journal
Class of 2013 seniors show their school spirit - and new Red Sea banner - at the homecoming football game on October 5th, 2012.
Red Sea Revealed Nina Obwald
There are no fans more dedicated in Section II football than those of Guilderland High School.
Every Friday night, you can expect to see students and parents at the Dutchmen’s game, rain or shine, home or away. While the Guilderland’s student section, known as the Red Sea, has attended every game this season, the biggest crowd this year showed up on Friday, October 5th, for Guilderland’s homecoming game versus Bethlehem.
Bethlehem’s fans, known as the BC Hooligans, made a surprisingly strong showing at an away game for their team. Chants of “We can’t hear you!” were thrown back and forth across the field as often as the score flip-flopped during the game. In the end, the Eagles were no match for the Dutchmen, who pulled out a 25-21 win. And, the Hooligans
were no match for the Red Sea. The Guilderland community came together in an impressive show of support for what may be the football team’s final home game of the 2012 season. In comparison, the support for the Red Sea has not always been so universal.
Gangnam Style, Korean Sensation
Apple Blight Haley Chang Do you remember those fall months when your family would go to pick their own apples? Remember the sound of biting into a brand new apple, right off the branch? Remember the smell of apple cider and cider doughnuts wafting into the orchard? Now think about how many apples are scattered all around the trees. Now take that number of apples and decrease it by almost 90%. Do you get a picture of wilted trees with only a single apple in sight? Well that’s pretty much what all the orchards look like right about now.
Korean dance song hides a more meaningful message Michelle Kang I’m sure you’ve all heard of “Gangnam Style”—the hit dance song from South Korea that has spread like wildfire around the globe, blowing up pages of Internet blogs and hitting over 350 million views on Youtube. Praised for its humorous, catchy rhythm and unusual choreography, the brightlycolored music video has been shared by numerous American celebrities, covered by international media, and performed by flash mobs around the world. It has topped iTunes Charts in 31 countries and been recognized as the Most ‘Liked’ Video in Youtube History by Guinness
End of Regents? Lobby Desk Junior Hallway
World Records. PSY has brought his dance to the Ellen Show and Saturday Night Live. There’s no doubt about it— “Gangnam Style” has become an almost ridiculous sensation, impossible to miss wherever you are in the world. But, as a GHS student Jack Watson points out: “Of course, none of us nonKoreans has any idea what the song is about.” It turns out that the song may have a more profound meaning than any of its casual listeners were expecting. Behind the catchy dance beat and brightly decorated scenes of South Korea’s most luxurious neighborhood, PSY makes a
Pop Arts 8
Album Reviews: The Killers, Muse, and more
Hallways 3 Around Town 6 Pop Arts 8 Centerspread 10 Fine Arts 12 World&Cultures 14 Opinions 16 Sports 19
subtle head-nod to the extreme values of wealth and class in South Korean society. The lyrics are a surprisingly subversive and understated allusion to the lavish lifestyle of the Gangnam district of Seoul, which is notorious for its wild nightclubs and party-loving population (similar to the Beverly Hills in the US). By playing an absurd dancing playboy in the video, PSY both celebrates and lampoons what has become the defining lifestyle of Gangnam – materialistic, superficial, and absolutely ridiculous.
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The Journal is published by and for the students of Guilderland High School and is the school’s official student newspaper. We publish accounts of, and perspectives on, people, issues, and events that affect members of the school as well as the community. Although initialed by the writer, editorials reflect the majority opinion of the editorial staff. Reviews, columns, commentaries, and letters to the editor, however, represent the view of the individual writer and not necessarily those of the staff. Although we try not to solicit advertisements from competing businesses in a given issue, we cannot guarantee that a conflict involving advertising will not arise. Advertisers are solely responsible for the content of their respective advertisements. We are not responsible for printing and/or typographical errors that may occur in a given advertisement. We reserve the right not to print a given advertisement. Also, we cannot assure that columns, editorials, news, reviews or feature stories will not cover issues or events relating to any advertiser in this newspaper. We welcome signed letters from our readers. To be printed, letters must be of a reasonable length and contain neither libelous, slanderous, nor profane material. We reserve the right to reject any letter received. Unless otherwise noted by the editor-in-chief or the managing editor, all accepted letters will be printed in the letters to the editor section. We reserve the right to edit for length, grammar and content.
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theJournal October 2012
P.E. - emphasis on the “E” Sydney Campbell
There have been plenty of changes in our school in the past year alone. We’ve said our farewells to advisory, parking permits now come with an assigned row, and we’ve switched from GradeSpeed to SchoolTool. These transformations have taken away some of the attention from a smaller, but still significant change in a class we are all required to take: P.E. For those of you who were dozing off in phys ed on the first day of school, several things have been revised in the curriculum. First of all, pretesting as well as post-testing is now required for every unit to show growth in knowledge of the activity. Secondly, what was previously three different units in a semester has been reduced to two in order to assure a better understanding of each unit. Additionally, numerical grades will be distributed rather than the S and S+’s we’re used to. And finally, the most controversial change is the elimination of senior waiver. “I’m a little mad I’ve waited three years to senior waiver and now it’s not an option,” says senior Taylor Tommell. A veteran of the cross country team, Tommell adds, “I already have a hard workout after school; I don’t need another one during the day.” She isn’t the only one that feels this way; the majority of seniors involved in school sports seem to agree,
and so do the underclassmen. “I put effort into my gym class because I knew how well I did would help determine if I could senior waiver. Now that that isn’t a choice, there’s no motivation to try for good grades,” says junior Ashley Cohen, a current member of the varsity soccer team. “Taking away senior waiver was an unfortunate loss of privilege, but it was long overdue,” said P.E. teacher William Schewe. “We’ve been the only school in the region with that option for a while now.” he added. “We got rid of the senior waiver option because it’s impossible to meet the state requirements if you’re not coming to class.” said fellow P.E. teacher Jason Usher. Don’t get upset with the administration though, as students seem to do in regards to just about everything: “It wasn’t a decision made by Guilderland. Governor Cuomo mandated these changes, and it’s necessary to follow them in order to receive state funding,” Schewe assured. As for the other changes in the curriculum, most students don’t seem to have a problem and consider them to be improvements. Michelina Scotti, a junior at GHS, says, “I don’t mind [pretesting and numerical grades] really. I’d like to know how well I’m really doing in gym rather than getting an S or and S+ because
The new gym stands empty, a rare sight this year.
that wasn’t a very good indicator.” Schewe agrees, saying “I think the changes are fair. They’re a much clearer way to assess the students.” In regards to senior waiver, it doesn’t look like it’s coming back anytime soon.
Photo by Sam Pitkin / The Journal
As for the other changes, they appear to be permanent too. Look on the bright side though, seniors: who doesn’t love a good game of melon ball? You’ll just get to play eight semesters throughout high school instead of seven.
Wireless Internet: Coming soon? Goodbye Regents Exams? Zack Cleary
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could complete work on our laptops, stream videos on smart phones, and download books onto Kindles in school? Of course you can bring in laptops and other devices in now, but we’re lacking one key feature: wireless internet.
with a smart phone, a laptop, and a kindle and potentially be trying to access the secure internet on three devices! That adds up to a lot of usage and a big potential for internet failure. If that failure takes place, it could be devastating. If security crashes, students could have access to
As of now, only the school laptops and teachers who set up their devices... have [wifi] access.
As of now, only the school laptops and teachers who set up their devices with the technicians have access to it, according to high school librarian Melissa Gergen. There have been talks of expansion and of allowing students to use their own devices with this wifi and she’s all for it, said Gergen. It would accommodate more classes, and study hall kids won’t be kicked off the computers when classes come in. But with this expansion in technology, there comes a couple obstacles to traverse. The main obstacle is the security problem. As of now, there are a few modems the can serve up to 25 or so users of wireless internet. But what happens when rush of students are in the library and when these students all try access the internet at the same time? Not just on one device either. Someone could come in
Graphic by of Isaac Malsky / The Journal
other student’s info. Medical records, grades, SAT scores would be some of the thing there for the taking. This obstacle must be worked out before the wireless internet is implemented. Also, there is the always evident obstacle of price. Some areas will need more routers and modems since most of the school is made of thick concrete walls. The more modems needed, the more costly this production will become. So in the near future, it looks like wireless internet will be here. Maybe even this year, Gergen says. But until then, we’ll just have to call dibs on the computer that just opened up in the crowded library.
Nick Schwartz The standardized finals known as Regents Exams that students across New York State have come to know so well may be gone in the near future. New York State Regents Exams have been around since the Civil War. They are used to measure proficiency in a wide range of subjects, and are required of all students in the state in order to receive a Regents Diploma. But within a few years, the Regents exams could be replaced with a new standardized exam known as the PARCC Assessment. The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) is trying to create a universal set of K-12 assessments in core subjects of education, specifically English and Math. At this point, 23 states and the US Vir-
gin Islands are members of the PARCC consortium, and New York could soon be on the list. “By the 2014-2015 school year, New York could be using the PARCC system,” says assistant principal Mark Brooks. “Nothing is set in stone yet, but it’s certainly a possibility.” What is also interesting about these exams is that they are entirely computerized; no more paper tests or number two pencils. This means that the test can be administered to virtually an unlimited number of students with relative ease. Perhaps someday the United States will have a standardized K-12 assessment test for the entire nation. With so many states already using the system, that day might be closer than expected.
Librarian leaves GHS
Guilderland High School is sad to say goodbye to one of their favorite librarians, Ms. Kelsey Moak. After two years of working at Guilderland High School’s library as a media specialist, Ms. Moak is now working at Siena College as a reference librarian. Siena College is a gorgeous liberal arts college in Loudonville, NY, with over three thousand students currently attending. Even at Siena, Ms. Moak still sees Guilderland students every now and then, but as graduates! When asked about how she liked her job, she replied, “I’ve gotten some interesting questions
at the reference desk and I really enjoy a good challenge.” Along with helping students with their research, Ms. Moak also has to make sure that the resources provided at the library are easily accessible by the students of Siena. Back in GHS, students said that they missed Ms. Moak and she returned the sentiment by saying that she will always remember how much she enjoyed the conversations about research, books and life with the wonderful people of Guilderland, adding, “It was a real privilege helping young adults reach their goals.”
theJournal October 2012
Junior hallway makes for difficult passing time Commentary by Emma Grabek Every student that attends GHS can attest that sometimes the hallways become a little cluttered during passing time. While we are granted nine minutes to navigate between classes, there are specific places throughout the school that interrupt our travels: The quad, the front entrance, and the area near Guidance. However, many would argue that it also includes the “junior” hallway, located between the school store and guidance. It was brought to my attention through my own experiences that this specific hallway was completely clogged with students of the junior class. While the concept behind the gathering is convenient and ideal for them, it doesn’t benefit the rest of the student population. I’m not sure if it’s a sense of literal seniority or if it’s just pure annoyance, but the senior class, for the most part, does not support the gathering of 11th grade students. It causes disorder and many students just find it difficult to pass through without getting bumped and bruised. When asked about her interactions with the hallway, Senior Katelyn Kaczkowski stated, “That hallway is the most convenient way to get from the English and Social Studies wing to lunch and the other side of the building and they basi-
The bustling hallways near the cafeteria
cally take that away.” Not only is it a direct disturbance of travel, some have implied that it’s also a physical disturbance. I don’t mean to say that the juniors are attempting to inflict pain on other students (sometimes their fellow classmates). But I do think that some of the students simply don’t take
Photo courtesy of Sam Pitkin / The Journal
notice to the people attempting to pass them. However, some of the juniors that do park themselves by those lockers feel quite differently. Trevor Laicha, a junior, admits to participating but understands why there is commotion about their location. “I can see why people don’t like it. It
backs up the walking and causes horrible traffic.” Other juniors simply believe that it isn’t a problem. Gabby Marino claims, “It’s not intended to anger the seniors, I haven’t heard much about the seniors caring that we sometimes go there and have lockers there.” Quite possibly, the issue lies within the fact that concerned members of the student body are not accurately expressing their feelings. On the other hand, some of those students are freshmen and can’t muster up the courage to stand up to intimidating upperclassmen. “Some of the freshmen have told me they are afraid… I just throw elbows and dirty looks,” said Nicole Das. It might sound ridiculous but it’s true. The freshmen are still struggling to adjust to high school. They don’t need to be pushed and pulled, no matter how accidental it may be. When it really comes down to it, the issue of the hallway is about the safety and security of the students here at GHS. The days of kids being wedged into lockers may be long gone but the hallways still aren’t the safest place. So spread out and get to class, ladies and gentleman. The rest of us have places to be.
Mixed reactions to the new desk in lobby
GHS students weigh in on the newest lobby addition Sam DeSantis
front desk says that it was built to be “more functional and more visible”, and that the reactions to the desk have been “mixed.” Parents seem to appreciate the new desk but the student’s reactions are not quite as positive. Rakeeb Kureshi, a senior at GHS, calls the new desk a “waste of money,” and Skylar Mead, another senior, says the new desk is “unnecessary and ridiculous”.
If the goal of the administration was to create a more inviting entrance for There have been many changes to GHS this year, but perhaps one of the visitors of the High School, they did not most noticeable is the large structure succeed. The new lobby desk does not looming in the front lobby. The new fit with the atheistic of the room and lobby desk, built at a time where classes seems as if it was thrown carelessly in to the room without regard. “Big and and clubs are being cut due to budget issues, has been a source of concern for obnoxious” and “harder to walk around is how some students are describing the many students and teachers. Sue, the longtime secretary of the new desk. Even Sue has her doubts about the construction of the fortress-like walls around the desk: “I thought they would build something more up against the wall, it’s strange to be higher up in the middle of the room like this, with kids walking behind me” Despite these concerns, it can be argued that the functionality of the desk has been greatly improved. For the amount of use the front desk gets, the little table that stood last year was simply not effective. Now the desk, complete with two file cabinets, a laptop, and plenty of space for dropped off items, can efficiently deal with Photo courtesy of Lucas Balzer / The Journal the multitude of students, Sue, front desk secretary, and junior Jared Mullen sit at the new lobby desk. parents, and visitors that use it on a daily basis. Also,
the new desk gives a much better vantage point over the lobby. This can be crucial to administrators when there are literally hundreds of students there at once.
It is clear that GHS has made the right decision.
Above everything else, the thing that concerns students and teachers is the cost of the desk and how the school was able to pay for it. According to Cliff Nooney, the head of maintenance for Guilderland High School, the desk was “not contracted” and “built entirely by staff ”. The total cost of the new desk including the mica countertops, only came out to a mere 700-800 dollars. Nooney said they were able to keep costs down by reusing wood and other materials that they had around the school. Although many students don’t like the new lobby desk, it seems that they are just simply uninformed. It is clear that GHS has made the right decision. By maximizing functionality and minimizing cost, the administration has greatly improved the system they had last year and made the front lobby a more inviting place for those who visit.
theJournal October 2012
Around Town Fall festivities for all ages in Albany Taylor Tewksbury
As the days get shorter and the leaves start to change, autumn has announced its arrival. So with fall festivities in full swing, the search is on to find the perfect activities. Whether you’re looking for apple picking, hayrides, or a good haunt, the Capital District holds your destination. Indian Ladder Farms
In its 97th year of operation, Indian Ladder Farms remains a local favorite. “It’s such a family friendly experience,” recalled Alexis Donnelly, a junior at Guilderland, “I enjoyed it as a kid when I had my birthday there and when I was a teenager picking apples with my friends”. Indian Ladder is open throughout the season for hay rides, the Apple Barn, bakery, gift shop and farm animals. The farm is also typically open for apple picking. Unfortunately, due to the late frost this spring, pick-your-own apples is only open on a limited number of days, so it is important to call ahead before making the trip to Altamont. But there is no shortage of pumpkins. You can scavenge through the fields for the perfect one for carving or painting. And don’t forget to visit the farm market to pick up some cider and cinnamon doughnuts on your way out.
is transformed into a fright fest. Every weekend in October, you can make your way through five haunted attractions that are sure to make you shiver.
Double M Haunted Hayrides
Indian Ladder Farms gearing up for apple season
for them to do,” said Dave Kosier, a math teacher at Guilderland High School, “We try to go every year as Located in Schaghticoke, Liberty a type of fall tradition”. The farm Ridge has something to do for all ages. is full of harvest activities. There is “My kids liked everything about it. pumpkin picking, barnyard animals, There were a bunch of neat activities
Liberty Ridge Farms
Photo by Taylor Tewksbury
a cow tractor ride, and a giant pillow bounce. At the Country Farm Market, you can purchase a variety of goods and treats, including delicious cider doughnuts. Liberty Ridge is also home to another fall favorite, the corn maze. By night, the farm
Located in Ballston Spa, Double M is sure to send chills resonating down the spine. Starting on the haunted hayride, you make your way down a dismal path that is full of fright. Along the way you will encounter ghoulish actors, mechanical scares, and special effects. Following the hayride, guests can walk through three other bloodcurdling attractions. Double M also offers a variety of other activities like a live show and The Last Ride, a chance to lay in a coffin for a real life death experience. “Every year there is something new,” explained Aimee Terry, a junior at Guilderland. She has visited Double M every fall for the past three years. “It’s fun to go with family and friends, so it is never exactly the same.” The trip never fails to create a ghostly good time.
24th Annual Goold’s Festival: Apples, crafts, & fun for all ages Bryce Goyer The lively craft show at Goold’s 24th Annual Apple Festival is what separates it from bundles of other apple festivals in the Capital Region. Seated right after the ticket booth were two large white tents with a galore of vendors selling their items. Items ranged from whimsical to practical, selling anything from dog treats to crystal jewelry. The craft tent was busy and crowded, buzzing with energy, despite the cloudy weather outside. “Our company is independent, we sell handmade jewelry,” said the owners of the bead booth, two retired teachers. “We’ve been coming to this festival for about 15 years.” The two women make the jewelry from home and attend this festival because “it’s a hobby and we like to sell our crafts”. Another long-time vendor at the craft show is the flowers booth by Kate who has been coming for around 12 to 15 years. “I sell wild-baskets, wreaths, arrangements with other features like light branches that give it a nice little accent.” says Kate, who is from Saratoga
Springs. “I attend shows, like craft area where you could eat your apple fairs.” This line of work might seem delicacies, buy non-apple themed food, unpredictable with paycheck dependent or just a place to rest while you looked upon periodic customers. Yet, Kate has over your newly purchased craft items. Near this multi-functional café regulars just like any other there was a stage and dance floor business. “I have a lot of regular customers where a variety of live bands and dancing troupes who come and look performed; there for me here because was even Irish they know I always step-dancing! come. And then The oldI’ll give them a fashioned ever schedule of my popular corn upcoming shows maze was in so they can see me there.” appearance at the festival too The Apple with twists and Festival wasn’t just turns to keep fun for craft show fanatics; there were the whole family activities and products entertained. The festival for everyone. The Festival had all the apple basics, Graphic By Mary Powathil / The Journal had many activities varieties of gleaming to keep children or apples ready to be hand-picked, fresh children at heart entertained. There was cider doughnuts straight from the an area filled with different and colorful oven, piping hot spiced apple cider. bouncy bounces. Children also flocked The festival also had a temporary café to the large pumpkin patch filled to the
brim with all sizes of the bright orange vegetables. Parents who wanted to take their children’s energy level down would usher them into the haunted house, the children came out frightened but at least quiet. Even though there was chaos and fun at every corner of this festival the craft tent and vendors still were successful. Most of the craft vendors who frequent this craft tent make their living from selling their goods at craft shows, whether that be their full-time job or just a way to do a hobby they love and make some extra cash. Retired teachers, skilled craftsmen, and culinary masters all gather at the craft fair hoping for one thing. The craft vendors are hoping that they are selling something special enough to make people take time from all the fun festivities going on around them, and go to their booth and make a purchase. The line of work craft vendors are in might seem unpredictable and unsteady to the outside world, but in their little slice of paradise, in that white tent, they’re just happy to be doing what they love.
theJournal October 2012
Around Town Blight takes a bite out of apple sales Continued from Page 1 According to a USDA preliminary summary, there were 66.6 tons of apples produced last year. This year that amount is supposed to drop by ten percent. I spoke to Pete Tynick, the owner of Indian Ladder Farms, he said “We lost about 90% of our crop this year,” and called it “the worst year we’ve ever had.” That means that nine out of every ten apples died at Indian Ladder this year. Some people may think that this is blight but in actuality it is just a shortage of apples due to a warmer climate. According to the EPA, average global temperatures have gotten slowly hotter as the years have progressed due to the greenhouse gas affect in our atmosphere.
Due to this there has been an increase in the temperatures of the seasons which has caused problems with many plants other than apples. In the winter months when it gets cold, the trees begin to shut down and lose all their leaves. They know when it is time to “wake-up” when the warm temperatures come back. Mr.Tynick explained that there was a very warm winter which made the trees think that it was spring. The apple trees then started to blossom in April instead of May. But in April there was a lot of freezing temperatures so all the blossoms died and therefore there aren’t any apples. Mr. Tynick expressed his concerns, saying, “My business is severely
ShopRite storms Capital Region Laura Tang Located in Niskayuna, Albany, and recently Slingerlands, the ShopRite supermarket installments have drawn exceptional attention from grocery shoppers. On the opening days, the ShopRite stores were abuzz with customers of all ages. From young children staring at the impressive seafood counter to old couples picking out a watermelon, many wanted to check out the new grocery store in town. My mother and I were among the Albany crowd as we pushed our cart through the product-filled aisles. The new ShopRite is well-organized, well-lit, and clean. The workers are courteous and helpful. There is a wide variety of products available, and quite a number of people who have shopped there claim that their cheese selection is top-notch. Aside from the seafood table, the deli, bakery, and buffet offer more options for the shopper. The prices are also reasonable, especially natural produce, and their weekly deals can be a steal. ShopRite’s aforementioned qualities make it a decent competitor for established supermarkets, but it’s the store’s new Shop at Home option that might make Price Chopper and Hannaford a little nervous. ShopRite offers a new way to shop for groceries and have them delivered to your house for only $6.95 extra or, if your order exceeds $100, for free. This option allows busy people to order their products online through the easily navigable ShopRite website. You can pay either online or with your credit card upon delivery. The service is professional, and the delivery man even offers to help carry your groceries into your kitchen. And with the first delivery, you even get a bouquet of flowers! For some younger shoppers, ShopRite may seem like a new addition to upper New York. They may be surprised to learn that it’s not, and that in the 1980s,
the chain store had a few locations in the Capital District before it decided to leave. Many people welcome the new ShopRite stores with open arms, but others are more wary. Specifically, former employees who were suddenly left jobless after the store left. It seems as if ShopRite is doing extra for their current employees though; Vice President of Human Resources and Community Affairs of ShopRite, Tom Urtz, announced a special transportation program through CDTA that allows for the 1,000 employees to travel to and from work for free. With all the publicity about ShopRite,
crippled. The question now is can we still stay in business?” Tynick expects to lose hundreds of dollars this year in profits and next year doesn’t look any better because temperatures are going to continue to rise in the coming years. Now all farmers can do is sit and wait for next year’s season and hope for the best. It’s not only the orchard itself that is hurt but also the people who work for the orchards. The people who transport and pick the apples are now out of jobs because there is nothing for them to do. It affects the whole country too. The less organic home grown crops that are produced in the US the harder it is to supply the country’s population with
food. Along with that, it is causing food prices to soar. The increasing prices hurt the already hurting economy, which in turn causes more turmoil for the population and less money for the apple farmers. Many people I talked to say that they are upset about the shortage because at many orchards they won’t let you pick your own apples this year. Going to an apple orchard in the fall is all about apple picking, the experience is lost when you take away the pick your own part of it. While the students that I talked to don’t seem too discouraged from going to the orchards, most don’t think it is as fun without the pick your own part of it.
Extreme Makeover: Pizza Edition Upgrades include new TVs, bar, tables
The store’s new Shop at Home option... might make Price Chopper and Hannaford a little nervous.
it seems as if Price Chopper is feeling the competition. The Slingerlands ShopRite, which opened on September 30th, is located less than a mile away from the Price Chopper. The Slingerlands Price Chopper planned a grand reopening of the store on September 9th. The ShopRite offers home delivery, and Price Chopper says it is planning to also offer home delivery from its Slingerlands store to a few certain zip codes. The new ShopRite stores not only offer a wider selection of goods, but the chain store’s presence demands more from other supermarkets. In the words of president and chief operating officer of ShopRite, Dave Figurelli: “Competition is good; it makes us all better.” The ShopRite store, at least the one in Niskayuna, has signed a lease for twenty years, which means that we will probably be seeing more of the store in the near future.
Photo courtesy of Emily Cogswell/ The Journal
Pizza Gram gets a new look with the nearly completed addition.
Ioana Sima Many people have driven on Western Ave and seen the construction at Pizza Gram. This rendition of Pizza Gram is not only bigger, but also more modern. Pizza Gram’s expansion makes room for a new bar, which is twice as large as the old one and has a granite top. There are eight flat screen TVs that adorn the new bar, which will attract more customers to watch sporting events. In place of the old bar, there will be more tables for customers. Samantha Siggia, an employee at Pizza Gram says, “[Pizza Gram is] adding more tables, so for all of you that know ‘Parm Night’ as the busiest night, we will now have more tables, which means quicker seating.” “They started the construction around
the second week of July,” Samantha said. Before construction actually took place the old deck had to be ripped down to make room for the new bar, which took nearly three months. “They’re still not done but it’s so close. It should be ready in the next couple of weeks. I’m not sure if they will be adding anything new for a while since this was such a big investment. Although, updates are always a good way to attract more people to your restaurant!” People really seem to like the extension to Pizza Gram. Samantha says, “I personally love the new addition, if you haven’t seen the inside yet you should definitely check it out, because it will blow your mind. Everything just looks really beautiful and updated.”
Nosh: a welcome change to Guilderland’s deli scene Hayley Mattice Get hungry Guilderland! The word snack has a whole new meaning and it is not associated with small helpings anymore. On August 15th, 2012, Albany, New York was introduced to a new kind of restaurant, a new kind of deli, and a new meaning of the word snack. Nosh, a Yiddish word meaning snack, is now associated with large deli sandwiches piled high with your favorite meats. Nosh NY Delicatessen is not a normal deli you find in your local supermarket. Delis like Nosh are more commonly found in NYC or Long Island, even more the reason for Albany to give this new and unique restaurant a chance. Try it out and I guarantee you will be satisfied with what you order. Nosh is a deli where people have the option to sit down and enjoy a bite to eat, or order something to go. The flexibility and style of this restaurant is unique and not like many delis around here. “The comfortable atmosphere is produced by each and every employee,” said the co-owner of Nosh, Nick Huban. When you walk into the restaurant, the modern style and organization provide a feeling of confidence and put–togetherness. All the employees greet each customer with a friendly smile and are available to attend to any need. The aroma of all the fresh meats and cheeses surround you as you decide what you want to
The Nosh Deli sign welcomes customers in from the street into the delicious deli.
order. The most popular items right now are the “corn beef, pastrami, and the brisket,” answered Huban. “But it is not your run of the mill sandwich shop,” he explains. “The meat is prepared differently.” The variety of foods that are sold allows Nosh to be a place of dining for all ages, and the more people experience this different kind of deli, the more people will understand and appreciate the differences of their style. Each employee is working for the
same goal, and that goal can only be achieved if everyone works together. “The number one goal is customer satisfaction,” says Huban. Producing delicious food is one thing, but the way it is delivered is another. “Our product we know is good, but what we do with it after it is prepared makes the difference” says Huban. This chain starts from the very beginning of meat slicers, to the waiter presenting guests with their food. Teamwork is a very important aspect everywhere,
Photo courtesy of Nicole Weijola / The Journal
and it is especially valued at Nosh. The hard work that each and every employee put in to making every aspect of the customers experience there is impeccable. “You can feel it from the front of the house to the back,” stated Huban with pride. There is skill, passion, and true dedication throughout the kitchen and that is what makes the food and the atmosphere at Nosh so special.
Guilderland’s newest Italian restaurant: Café Calabria Mary Powathil Café Calabria offers a great, authentic Italian dining experience in the heart of
Guilderland. The café is located at 1736 Western Avenue and is owned and run by the Futia family. Serving up both
Above: Chicken alla Michele from Café Calabria
Photo by Mary Powathil / The Journal
lunch and dinner, the café is the perfect place to share a meal with family and friends. My family and I made a visit to the restaurant on a cool and rainy Thursday evening. The sign posted alongside Western Avenue was easy to find and there was ample parking in the back. Stairs on the side of the building led us into the warmly lit café. Greeted at the main desk, we were brought to a table promptly and assured that a server would return shortly to take our order. After taking our seats at a table in one of their two main dining areas, I noticed a bakery located at the other side of the café. The walls were adorned with sconces, a framed map of the region of Calabria, and pieces of artwork. Tiles framed the ceiling and added to the restaurant’s European flair. The server who soon greeted us was warm and friendly. She presented us with the specials of the day and offered us drinks. When it came time to order, the menu was easy to follow and listed each dish by category, followed by short descriptions. My parents split one of the specials of the day, veal over pasta. I ordered Chicken alla Michele, and my sister ordered Tortellini Carbonara. While waiting for our main courses to arrive, we were promptly served lightly toasted, steaming slices of bread with a garlic and herb infused butter which melted in your mouth. Our salads arrived after a few minutes; each tossed with the house balsamic vinaigrette. The main
courses followed soon thereafter along with a new basket of hot bread. As a novice in the subject of Italian food, I tried my luck with the Chicken alla Michele, hoping to receive a spicy or tangy dish which would cater to my love for spicy food. What I received was a wonderfully prepared and flavorful bed of chickpeas, artichoke hearts, cici beans, grape tomatoes, shredded provolone cheese, and potato, on top of which sat succulent chicken breasts which were all flavored by a light olive oil and herb sauce. I enjoyed the chickpea “salad,” more than the chicken for its stronger flavor. My parents had a very well prepared dish and my sister had more than she could finish and opted to pack the rest to go. For dessert, we ordered based on our server’s suggestions and quick overview of their various options: a peach shaped cookie which was filled with a vanilla crème, and an Italian ice cream concoction consisting of chocolate ice cream, a cherry, and almonds, all encased in a delicate chocolate shell. Overall, I was satisfied with my meal and would recommend this restaurant to people looking for a fine dining experience or hoping to try authentic Italian cuisine. The café states on its website, “Dedicated to quality and inspired by Calabrese cuisine, every dish is cared for, serving a taste of southern Italy with every plate. With graciously sized meals and gourmet ingredients, you’ll never leave hungry.”
theJournal October 2012
Pop Arts Frank Ocean has original sound in sea of R&B Reza Sayeed In a day and age where conventionality and homogeneity in music is the surest way to success as well as widespread discovery and acclaim, it’s not very often you can come across someone who’s a truly original artist. Frank Ocean’s music is perfectly in tune with his name. It is like the soft tide massaging the coast of the ears, leaving you with a sense of serenity. His music is anything but boring next to the regular productions of the music industry. An artist who has his roots coming from the jazzy and soulful haven of New Orleans had to find refuge in LA once Katrina sent his studio afloat and has found success in LA ever since. There’s something about Frank Ocean’s flow that clearly sets him apart from the hidebound, unwavering acts showcasing the R&B industry. He came up as a ghostwriter for big name artists including the phenomenon that is Justin Bieber as well as R&B staple, John Legend. Ocean became friends with the enigmatic Tyler the Creator and joined his nonsensical rap group, Odd Future, whose music can be subtly described as being something along the lines of musical anarchy. His solo career was tipped off by his self-released record entitled nostalgia, ULTRA which was subject to much critical and popular acclaim. The release also served as a vector which spread his music to the hierarchies in the Industry with names such as Jay-Z and Kanye West. His sudden rise to stardom was only the start to the odd future he was soon to become a part of. Jay-Z and Kanye West decided to let
Ocean in on their highly awaited mega collaboration, Watch the Throne. He was included in the first track of the release, titled No Church in the Wild in which
most recently released album and it marked his major label debut. Ocean tipped the domino of anticipation to the album with a move nobody could see coming. The first single off the album was titled, “Pyramids” and was anything but a regular release. It is a ten-minute long piece which Ocean managed to balance with greater precision than most artists can with a barely 3 minute long radio hit. Somehow, he manages to slip in figures like Cleopatra in telling a romance that probably only Ocean can manage to handle let alone live. Ocean’s individual attempts at presenting the audaciously unconventional has paid dividends and established a feel that’s very unique to his music. His musiGraphic By Joy Jing / The Journal cal style is accompanied by an omnipresent, subOcean served to be a buffer to the ca- dued, slowly-churning beat giving way lamity formulated by the mathematically to Ocean’s almost perennially crooning balanced one-two punch provided by Jay voice. Sometimes, it almost feels as if he and Kanye. He formed a bridge linking employs a sort of white noise somewhere the clockmaker-like delivery of Jay-Z who in the background which serves as a explored philosophical arguments in his metronomic constant in the constantly verse to the dubious yet characteristically fluctuating hooks and sudden falsettos flamboyant Kanye’s verse. Ocean also that Ocean exploits. Frank Ocean is a featured on a later track in the album most idiosyncratic artist in how he tells called Made in America. his stories through his lyrics. His albums channel ORANGE was Frank Ocean’s can be read as a true-to-life love story as
he covers every base of a real love affair. He releases themes such as the euphoria that comes with Cupid’s numbing arrows as well as the cratered depressions that follow. He fills some tracks with sheer lust and others with the passions of every man. On July 4, about two weeks before the release of channel, ORANGE, he posted an open letter to his “first love” on his Tumblr page. Hearing about singers’ or rappers’ sexual as well as romantic exploits through their music is a fairly regular occurrence today. The revelation came not from the explicitness of the letter but the nature of his love. The letter was to a man Ocean had fallen in love with 5 years before. For close listeners of Ocean’s music, there has always been an uncertainty in Ocean’s sexuality as every once in awhile, a soft, cryptic “he” or “him” would leak through in his lyrics. He received a flood of support for his hard honesty from popular performers such as Beyonce and Russell Simmons and even got a Twitter shout-out from his close friend, and only recently homophobic, Tyler the Creator. The most recent public appearance of Frank Ocean was at the 2012 MTV VMAs where Ocean seductively serenaded an entire audience beautifully with pristine poise, performing an acoustic version his hit single, Thinkin’ Bout You. Frank Ocean, to this day has released two records, only one of them by a major label record. Ocean’s work thus far should inspire an optimism in fans of a style that ranges from violent rage to extreme serenity unique to Ocean.
Looper: fate, time travel, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt
A new science fiction movie pushes the boundaries of the genre Andrew Fedorov The end of Looper is a moment of the plain white noise of silence. The sort of place where in another movie you would clap, but in that moment you will do nothing but stand still and silent. You’ll be in shock. What will happen? Your mind will be blown with a break in the chain of fate. A movie will run with Joseph Gordon Levitt and Bruce Willis harmonizing roles that combine the genre of the terminator, with it’s thrilling action, toward grand philosophical goals and the images of science fiction, so often degraded today, into a gritty beauty. It will ask you questions of whether you must become your future self and whether fate is alterable with time travel as a mechanism for making the ideas engaging. These are themes that transfer from writer/director Rian Johnson’s previous film, The Brothers Bloom, in which we are asked whether
one can live an unwritten life. From the end we proceed to the middle in which a man, Joe, played by Levitt, is supposed to kill his future self, played by Willis, who has been sent back from the future for execution. Future Joe escapes Joe’s initial shots and runs away to change the past so that he’ll never be sent back in the future. His failure to kill the future Joe threatens the high life style Joe had been living and the future Joe’s failure means letting the wife he had in the future be killed by the men who send him to the past. Through their petty attempts time leads into the 3rd act that has grand repercussions and leaves an echo of wonder. Levitt wears prosthetics in the film to look more like Willis, but he also captures Willis’ mannerisms. For a film with a 30 million dollar budget it stretches it very well creating a world with no difficulty though using many
modern clothes and cars with the claim that they are retro fashion. The film is also a much harder R than the trailer shows with nudity and drug use popping up in Joe’s lifestyle and tons of violence which means to thrill. Your mind will be blown by the break in the chain of fate.
Joe works as a Looper. In his time, circa 2044, time travel hasn’t been invented yet but 30 years from then it will have been. In that future it’s very hard to kill people because they are all tracked so the easiest way to dispose of someone you don’t like is to send them to the past and have them executed by a looper. The loopers are handsomely rewarded and in the violent world they
live in they are the economic elite. They live a fast life style with drugs and partying after work hours. They receive this lifestyle in exchange for killing their future selves, from 30 years in the future, in order to close loops in time. Joe’s friend Seth, who has telekinetic abilities loses control of his life, when he fails to kill his future self. Seth’s future self attempts to escape but current Seth is captured and carved up until he’s a shrivelled inhuman thing and future Seth disappears. So after travelling through the film we, at last, arrive at the start. We witness the violence of Joe’s first execution that as of yet has no point and the world that as of yet has no meaning. We sit down and see the thing from which a story will expand, a thought will grow, and a wonderful cerebral entertainment will move from a simple beginning.
Recent album releases don’t disappoint Mumford & Sons: Babel
Mumford & Sons’ sophomore release, “Babel”, can be summed up in one word: epic. The album quality is crisp, and the sound has remained true to their first record. It takes the best facets of Sigh No More, and weaves them into one flawless track after another. Babel is full of the classic Mumford & Sons’ musical style of playing with the highs and lows, and their strong uses of instruments such as the banjo, upright bass, mandolin, and piano give their music a unique twist. Perhaps the most important part of the
The Killers: Battle Born
album is the title, and it’s reference to the biblical story of the Tower of Babel; where a group of men got together to build a tower so tall that they could see the Christian God. The story then says that God changed all of the languages so no one could understand one another, therefore confusing the men attempting to construct the tower. The story of the Tower of Babel is one of confusion, of struggle. In an interview with The Guardian, Marcus Mumford said that he sees faith as “something beautiful, and something real, and something universal, or it can be…we all have our separate views on religion, but I think is faith is something to be celebrated.” Although the album is not heavy in Jesus references; faith in general is a strong theme throughout. The title ties together the entire record, and evokes a simple message: limit your pride and don’t overstep your boundaries.
The last “arena-rock” band, The Killers, has just released their most mature album yet, Battle Born. The bands unique combination of wonky synths and peppy, glam melodies found throughout their past album, Hot Fuss, mixes well with their well developed lyrical content on Battle Born. The album kicks off with “Flesh and Bone.” The mixture of electronic-beats and strong guitar chords make it irresist-
ible to strum along with the band. The first five songs carry the faster beat songs with the love themed lyrics. In “A Matter of Time,” Brandon Flowers sings, “I was fallin’ back on forever when you told me about your heart / You laid it on the line.” Towards the middle of the album the slower songs emerge. “Miss Atomic Bomb,” and the tearjerker, “Heart of a Girl,” are headliners. The album ends with a bang with the drum heavy, album titled song, “Battle Born.” Here, Flowers belts out “When they knock you down, you’re gonna get back on your feet,” carrying the theme that in love there is hope. Battle Born is the first time the ballads are as memorable as the dance cuts for The Killers. The lyrics are relatable and the combination of guitar and synthesized beats make it impossible to stop listening to this addictive album.
Night Visions is original, but receives mixed reviews
Most musicians striving to be in the limelight find that achieving real fame is as tricky as catching lightning in a bottle; rarely accomplished at the rate of a young Justin Bieber, for example. The journey is often long, tiresome, unrewarding, and more often than not, an utter failure. Recently, the Las Vegas based band Imagine Dragons has found the elusive shortcut to the front of the line and the top of the charts with a new, eclectic sound of their own. Their fans have been rewarded with
a new, hot sound, some very enthralling and exciting tunes, and every indication that there is a lot more to come. The group of four formed in 2008. After winning a couple battle of the bands competitions, they hit the studio for the first time in 2009 while recording two EP’s, and in time scoring a record deal with Interscope Records, where they spent the majority of this past year working on their debut album, Night Visions, released early September. In the four short years since they stepped onto the music scene, Imagine Dragons has concocted a sound like none other; combining a unique mixture of techno, indie rock and folk that evolves into an array of upbeat, foot- tapping tunes. Night Visions portrays their sound head on with twelve tracks featuring “It’s Time” and “Radioactive” (two popular singles from the previously released Continued Silence EP). Night Visions immediately bombarded the charts, peaking
on the Billboard Alternative Albums chart, and hopping to the number two spot on the Billboard 200. The album was a smashing hit on iTunes too, where it held the number one selling album spot. Imagine Dragons has concocted a sound like none other.
Night Visions received an array of mixed reviews. Music critic Lisa Kwon expresses in her review of the album, “Being surrounded by the attention of reputable producers and recorders helps make an album like Night Visions find its place on the charts. But leave room for the twinge of disappointment that comes from the lack of that Imagine Dragons edge that made them stand out in previously heard singles.” Her point is understandable; it is easy to say that the tracks all sound the same. But by listening
to each song individually it is possible to identify the distinctive melodies in each track. While the majority of the album does indeed have the ‘modernized- rock ho down’ vibe, it is the component of Imagine Dragons music that differentiates them from other groups. Contrary to the opinion of Lisa Kwon, USA Today’s Brian Mansfield exclaims “...the mandolin hook of It’s Time, the jaunty whistle of On Top of the World, the burbling guitar in Demons. Those creative touches may seem like small details, but it’s that imagination that gives these Dragons teeth.” Their new induction into stardom has yet to change the humble mentality of the quartet, and their genuine love for their fans is commendable. With their growing success and the massive impact on the music industry from Night Visions, Imagine Dragons has a bright future ahead of them.
American Horror Story offers a thrill like none other
Ryan Murphy, co-creator of Glee, The New Normal, and Nip/Tuck, has picked up American Horror Story for a second season premiering October 17th at 10 p.m. ET on FX. The first season, involving a family moving into a new house that happens to inhabit its past lifeless owners, won’t have any relevance to the new season, therefore the title of the show has changed to American Horror Story: Asylum to match the setting. Murphy has been using his Twitter (MrRPMurphy) to interact with fans on his new fall shows, and giving hints about what’s to come. Murphy tweeted a picture of the “multi-talented Adam Levine” on the set of the show. A day
later, Murphy tweeted a picture of little bit of both.” Sister Jude will be Levine with co-star Jenna Dewan, but surrounded by patients like Shelly the the two have kept quiet on their roles in nymphomaniac, played by Chloë Sevigny, the show. Many actors will be returning and Kit Walker who has been accused of this season, such as Jessica Lange who killing his wife, played by Evan Peters. won a Golden Globe “It’s different, because and Emmy this year for instead of torturing her role as Constance people, I’m the one Sister Jude... is a nun who Langdon in season one. being tortured” says runs an asylum for the Zachary Quinto, Evan Peters in an interview mentally insane. Peters, Frances Conroy posted on the show’s Facebook page. and Sarah Paulson Sarah Paulson is playing the role of include other actors back for season two. The setting is 1964, and Sister Jude, a lesbian journalist who is also a patient played by Lange, is a nun who runs an at the asylum. One of the villains this asylum for the mentally insane that was season goes by the name “Bloody previously a tuberculosis ward. When Face” which Murphy says will be “this asked if Lange will be playing a villain year’s Rubber Man” (an easily dislikable or heroine, Murphy states that it is “a character last season). Zachary Quinto
will be playing one of the doctors at the asylum who uses treatment methods on the patients that Sister Jude does not agree with. The first two episodes are called “Welcome to Braircliff ” and “Tricks and Treats,” just in time for Halloween. The episodes will premiere on FX October 17th and 24th. “I think this year will be very different than last year, and it’s going to be a different type of horror. A psychological horror,” says Paulson, and Dante Di Lorento expresses that it is the “sexiest, scariest thrill ride I have ever read.” Watch this season of American Horror Story: Asylum for a completely original thriller to satisfy your needs for a scare.
Legend and controversy : The Red Sea Continued from Page 1 Sports fans are known for their rowdy, sometimes explicit cheers that aim to encourage their team while putting down their opponents and often the referees at the same time. However, since the Red Sea was formed by the GHS Class of 2008, administrators and teachers have deemed it necessary to attend events and stand alongside, often in front of, the Red Sea. While is to show support for Guilderland sports, but, from the point of view of the students, they are also there to discourage inappropriate chants and cheers. Administrators were unavailable for comment on this story. Earlier this year, the administration called a group of eight male seniors to a meeting. Seven of the seniors are members of the front row of the Red Sea, a select group who stand at the edge of the Red Sea and lead most cheers. The eighth student is a player on the football team, and as such is not a member of the Red Sea during football season. Vito Mesiti is one of the select few who stand in the front row and was invited to the meeting. The meeting was to set out boundaries for the Red Sea. Mesiti said, “We discussed what we can’t yell and can yell. They [the administration] wanted to make sure we weren’t singling out players on the other team, because we
got in a bit of trouble for that last year.” The Red Sea meeting was attended by Principals Lisa Patierne, Aaron Sicotte, Mark Brooks, and Tom Lutsic, along with first-year Athletic Director Regan Johnson. While Mesiti called it “a negotiation,” the administration and Red Sea leaders seemed to come to a consensus that would be best for all involved.
We’re going to clean up our attitude, dignity for all.
“We’re going to clean up our attitude, dignity for all,” Mesiti said. The administration wants the Red Sea, specifically the seniors, to be positive role models for the rest of Guilderland’s student fans. Assistant Principal Lisa Patierne then asked the leaders to speak at beginning of the year assemblies given on September 13th. “She wanted us to get the crowd fired up!” Mesiti said. “They were big promises, but I hope they’ll be fulfilled,” junior Jeff Easley said. “One that sounded really cool was to [have the
Red Sea] go to the musical.” “At the end, we’ll be cheering our hearts out, guns blazing,” Mesiti said of their plans for attending the musical. They neglected to mention if they would be present at the fall play, Lend Me a Tenor, which opens Thursday, November 1, 2012. This year’s musical is South Pacific. Opening night is scheduled for Thursday, March 14, 2013. Senior John Stuto also added a promise: to attend a game for every sport at the school. When asked how well that promise is being fulfilled, Mesiti had no comment. “We went to half of the girls’ soccer [senior] game,” on September 29th, Easley said. Meanwhile, players on the team said they did not notice the Red Sea at the game. Along with attending football games, the Red Sea has also showed at a number of boys’ soccer games this season. While motivating the crowd may have been the objective, the Red Sea made some promises that left many students feeling skeptical. “I think they have good intentions, but it’s going to be hard to follow through,” said senior Anna Jacquinot. Ben Segal
added, “They are students too, they have responsibilities like everyone else.” As a result, their promises may be difficult to fulfill on top of their schoolwork, jobs, and college applications, for the seniors. However, after the disappointing cancellation of the Powderpuff game on October 4th, the Red Sea found time to instead attend the girls’ volleyball game versus Burnt Hills. “It was a bigger crowd than those at basketball games,” said senior Nick Schwartz. “It was amazing.” While that brings the total of sports attended during the fall season to 3.5, Mesiti says, “We’re waiting for sectionals to roll around,” to attend more sporting events. Plus, Mesiti added, some sports don’t want the Red Sea to attend their games. “If somebody on a team, that wants the Red Sea at their game, reaches out to us, we’ll be there,” he said. While some sports teams worry that the Red Sea’s rowdy reputation will detract from their game, Mesiti may have mollified some of the Red Sea’s critics by saying “we haven’t gotten in any trouble this year. No negativity has been tossed around.”
The Red Sea @DutchmenRedSea 21 Sep Rule #1 wear red Rule #2 no dumb broads in the front row. Ever. Rule #3 GET FRICKKENNNN LOUDDD!!!!!! The Red Sea @DutchmenRedSea Let’s get it dutchmen!!! Negativity may have been absent from the Red Sea’s physical presence this year, but not their online one. After the suggestion of the administration, the Red Sea started a Twitter account, @DutchmenRedSea, on which multiple controversial tweets have been posted. Mesiti declined to reveal the identity of the @DutchmenRedSea account owner and tweeter. However, one notable tweet contained 3 self-made Red Sea rules, one of which had a sexist message: “Rule #2 no dumb broads in the front row. Ever.” At homecoming, multiple senior girls stood alongside the boys in the front row. Other students have informally labeled these girls the “Red Sea groupies.” In addition to not allowing “broads” in the front row, the Red Sea has almost exclusively attended boys’ sports events in the past. The
Red Sea Sightings
@DutchmenRedSea Twitter Feed The Red Sea @DutchmenRedSea Powder Puff cancelled. Girls volleyball game 515
Class of 2013 seems to be making strides to change this, as evidenced by their presence at half of the girls’ senior soccer game earlier this season and also at the girls’ volleyball game. As the winter sports season approaches, it remains to be seen if the Red Sea will attend girls’ basketball games, gymnastics meeets, or other girls’ sports. The @DutchmenRedSea Twitter account has also greatly expanded the reach of the Red Sea. Senior Luke Nagle says, “After they
Earlier this year, the Red Sea promised to attend one game for each sport that Guilderland has to offer. Keep up to date on their progress here, in the sports section in each issue of The Journal, and online at www.theghsjournal.com Cross Country [ ]
Girls’ Soccer [.5]
Field Hockey [ ]
Girls’ Swimming [ ]
Girls’ Tennis [ ]
Golf [ }
Boys’ Volleyball [ ]
Boys’ Soccer [X]
Girls’ Volleyball [X]
tweeted about the girls’ volleyball game, tons of people showed up, especially a lot of freshmen and sophomores.” The Twitter has so far been an easy and successful way to tell the majority of GHS students where the Red Sea is going to be. After attending their last homecoming football game, the Red Sea seniors must now decide who to pass on their leadership to. It comes with a giant flag, a new banner, and possibly an ostentatious yet iconic pair of red and white striped pants, currently in the possession of senior Gabe August. Mesiti said the new leaders are so far “undecided,” while Easley maintained a
hopeful expression. The Red Sea is “all about having fun,” Mesiti said. Speaking from experience, the Red Sea is fun. It creates an intoxicating atmosphere that brings students of all ages, from all social groups, together in one place, for one purpose: to support Guilderland. Whether the Red Sea will expand its attendance to events outside of the normal has yet to be seen. But, if the same positive, footballRed Sea atmosphere seen this year can be brought to every sport and event Guilderland has to offer, the Dutchmen and Lady Dutch will be forces to be reckoned with. When the Red Sea shows up, as shown on Homecoming night, the Dutch do their best and find a way to win.
To see what fellow students have to say about the Red Sea’s presence at their games, visit: theghsjournal. com
theJournal October 2012
Fine Arts Previews and...
Photo by Sam Pitkin/ The Journal
GP prepares for fall play, “Lend Me a Tenor” Tim Horan Rehearsals are underway for this year’s fall play, “Lend Me a Tenor” by Ken Ludwig. “This a great show,” says director Mr. Maycock. “There’s mistaken identities, characters coming and going all the time, and non-stop comedy until the end.” The show takes place in 1934 at a hotel in Cleveland, where renowned opera singer Tito Merelli is staying while he stars in the show Othello. When Tito arrives and decides not to go on stage, chaos ensues as the hotel staff and cast members from the opera rush to find a way to put
on the show without Tito. Senior Francesca Soldevere will be playing Diana, a manipulative soprano
It’s a totally different vibe when you can’t rely on a song and dance. who demands the spotlight wherever she goes. This will be her third time on stage with the Guilderland Players, after
being in Anything Goes as a freshman and playing a significant role in last year’s Hairspray as Amber. “Usually I do musicals,” says Francesca. “But I’m learning that it’s a totally different vibe when you can’t rely on a song and dance in the middle of a scene.” After most rehearsals, Francesca goes to her dance studio in Colonie where she participates in and teaches dance classes. “GP has taught me to really utilize my study halls and free blocks,” she says. “It’s a big commitment, but there’s no better feeling than getting on stage and
performing for an audience.” For a night filled with drama, comedy, and a little opera singing; come see the Guilderland Players in “Lend Me a Tenor”, November 1st-3rd
Above: Cast members rehearse on stage for the upcoming GHs production of “Lend Me a Tenor”, by Ken Ludwig. The show will run from November 1st3rd in the auditiorium.
ESYO rehearsals begin for new season William Wang
On September 4th 2012, the Empire State Youth Orchestra had its first rehearsal of the season. The Youth Orchestra consists of around 70 talented musicians ranging from grades 4-12. This orchestra is one of 9 performing music groups in Empire State Youth Orchestras (ESYO), a non-profit organization that brings together the best instrumentalists from around the area. All together, ESYO consists of over 300 students from over 75 different schools. ESYO’s conductors range from high school orchestra teachers to professional conductors. ESYO is a great experience for all students, both musically and socially; it’s a place where kids from all over Upstate New York who share a common interest can go and have fun. Iris Zhou, a violinist who has been participating in ESYO for 3 years, says that, “You can connect to people in a way you can’t in school.… I really like it”. Christopher Ostwald, a
second-year clarinetist, says “It’s really fun because you get to challenge yourself with music you don’t play in High school… it’s really fun and has really helped me grow as a musician!” Last summer, the Youth Orchestra also had the opportunity to travel to Asia and play different music by various Asian composers. Throughout the tour, the orchestra performed in six different, outstanding music halls. The tour exposed the players to a wide variety of cultures and types of music. The Youth Orchestra also performs on CBS 6’s annual Melodies of Christmas concert. As for the Youth Orchestra’s upcoming performances, they will be performing on November 10th at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall. Selections include Tchaikovsky’s 4th Symphony and SaintSaëns’ Cello Concerto No. 1. More of its scheduled performances can be found online at esyo.org.
Photo by Luxi Peng/ The Journal
Above: The Youth Orchestra, after a performance in the 2011 Melodies of Christmas program. The Youth Orchestra is the highest and most prestigious of ESYO’s 9 groups.
Rowling’s new novel a drastic departure from Potter Abigal Schnoor Author J.K. Rowling is known for her Harry Potter series; international bestsellers that spawned eight blockbuster movies and a theme park. On September 27th, her latest book, The Casual Vacancy, became accessible to the public. It opened to a sea of mixed reviews, some saying “meh” and others exclaiming in triumph. Whether or not it lives up to the widely renowned Harry Potter series, one thing is clear - The Casual Vacancy is not a children’s book. The Casual Vacancy is bursting with disturbing scenes including: domestic abuse, thoughts of patricide (killing your own parents), suicide, rape, sex scenes, heroin addiction, and death. The book starts off with the death of Pagford resident and Parish Council member Barry Fairbrother, and from there continues
The Casual Vacancy is not a children’s book.
on a downward spiral as the rest of the townsfolk fight over the empty spot on the Council. The tiny town itself is dull, but what goes on in this town is aston-
ishing. One of the major issues in The Casual Vacancy revolves around the Fields; a low income housing development on the outskirts of Pagford that contains all the people that the “Pagfordians” would like to turn their backs on. Main characters of the book include residents of both Pagford and the Fields. The story shows every side of the conflicts that go on between these two contrasting groups. Between the characters, Rowling spins an intricate web just as fascinating as the network she fashioned in Harry Potter. However, some critics think that J.K. Rowling may have used up the last of her magic on Harry. Many do not consider The Casual Vacancy a great success; seeing it, instead, as a dreary disappointment. Reviews have claimed that it “neither engages nor transports” (Michiko Kakutani, NY Times), and that “It’s just dull” (Sherryl Connelly, NY Daily News). However, there are just as many (if not more) ecstatic reviews. It is also important to keep in mind that Harry Potter had bad reviews as well! Just as expected, many fans of Rowling adore The Casual Vacancy, calling it “A vivid read with great, memorable characters and a truly emotional payoff ” (Elizabeth Gleick, People Magazine). Others claim that it is “a deeply moving
book by somebody who understands both human beings and novels very, very deeply” (Lev Grossman, Time magazine). Clearly, The Casual Vacancy has lived up to some expectations - it has certainly lived up to mine. I am only a quarter of the way through The Casual Vacancy, but I have been glued to the book since page one. Many authors who previously wrote young-adult fiction were not able to successfully adjust to the world of adult fiction, but Rowling has revealed that she can tackle various genres while still remaining a darling in the eyes of her original readers. She has always made her characters particularly relatable, no matter how graphic and gloomy their stories are. The Casual Vacancy may be controversial, but it is still magical in my eyes.
Graphic by Shailyn Cotten / The Journal
ASO’s new season has a promising start Greg Eckhardt Upon entering the theater, I was buzzing with excitement. People from all walks of life – the elderly, the middle aged, the college student, and even the toddler – packed the theater to the brim. It was the opening concert of the 2012-13 season of the Albany Symphony Orchestra. On the program that evening was the Erasure Scherzo by Ted Hearne, Sergei Rachminoff ’s Piano Concerto no. 2 (performed by guest Valentina Lisitsa), and Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64 by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. The program was daunting, but the symphony showed off its skills to perfection. The evening’s entertainment began with Hearne’s Scherzo, a different type of sound. It had your typical melody and
Graphic by Michelle Xiong / The Journal
harmony, but the sudden ends of phrases and momentary pauses left the theater quite confused. After a couple of repeats, however, people started to catch on to the joke. Erasure Scherzo, erase and joke. This was supposed to be a funny piece, and most certainly was. The second piece was Rachmaninoff ’s famous second Piano Concerto. With three movements, it was a piece that left me in alternate universe. The second movement, adagio sostenuto (slow and sustained), was the most elegant and beauteous of the three. The third movement was the big shebang, the fireworks and explosions, the oohs and ahhs. It was the part that we were all looking forward to. You could see Ms. Lisitsa’s hands flying up and down the keyboard, drawing forth music and tonality and entrancing the entire theater. Rachmaninoff brought back the melody from the first movement and threw all that he could into it musically. The orchestration, with the piano pounding out chords that flew above the symphony, was spine tingling. The 54 minute, 4 movement long finale was Tchaikovsky’s Symphony no. 5 in E minor. It had ev-
ASO Season Preview
As the curtains open and the sounds of the instruments resonate throughout the room, you can feel the excitement. It’s that time of the year again; it’s the beginning of the Albany Symphony Orchestra’s season. This year the ASO is showcasng a diverse and magnificent set of perfor-
ASO is showcasing a diverse and magnificent set of performances
mances. The season will start strong with an early concert featuring Bach’s classic Magnificat and a composition by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Corigliano, performed with the Albany Pro Musica on October 13th. erything you could imagine, everything you could want from a symphony. The first movement, Andante - Allegro con anima (slow, then fast and animated) was there to establish the themes, catch your attention, introduce the piece. Its use of the woodwind section as the soloist throughout the entire symphony was brought back many times. The second movement was the slow and entrancing
On October 27th, the fan favorite Classical Mystery Tour’ Beatles Tribute Concert arrives. Enjoy the legendary band’s classics with the talent of a full orchestra, sure to bring you to your feet. Another highlight, the known and loved Magic of Christmas will be performed on December 8th; one of the Capital Region’s favorite festive traditions. The show is packed with amazing young performers, some old favorites along with a few show stopping surprises. This will be great fun for the whole family. However, the can’t-miss show of the season will be An Evening with Yo-Yo Ma. The world renowned cellist will grace the stage with his best partner, his cello. Mark your calendars for January 12th! This season is sure to be grand and magical. Make sure to stop by the Albany Symphony for a night of incredible entertainment.
movement of the symphony, meant to provoke wondering emotion and feelings. The third movement, Valse, was a dance, featuring a bassoon solo. The fourth movement was clearly the grand finale. With its grandeur and ideas taken from all the movements, it was a majestic, splendid way to end the concert.
theJournal October 2012
World and Cultures
China and Japan clash over islands
Max Chao Recently, two Asian nations have been arguing and squabbling against each other for a small group of islands, the Senkaku Islands, also known as the “Fishing Islands”. These islands, five in total, are found northeast of Taiwan, and south west of Okinawa Island, Japan. These inhabited fishing islands are well known for their prime fishing spots. The two nations, China and Japan, have both laid claim to the Fishing Islands. Both nations point to historical evidence that the islands are part of their territory. China’s claim started back in the 15th century during the Ming dynasty, during which period they were known as the Daiyou islands. China lost the claim to these islands after their loss to Japan in Sino-Japanese war in 1896. However, after the end of World War II, China reasserted that the land was still a part of China, and it should be returned to them. Japan’s claim of the islands started at the end of the Sino-Japanese War. After World War II, the United States gained control of the islands. These islands were eventually returned back to Japan in 1972, where it was placed under the care of the Kurihara family. Then, in 2010, the Japanese government purchased the Islands from the family for a sum of 25 million yen. Interestingly enough, Taiwan has also claimed sovereignty over these islands. As the closest nation to these islands, Taiwan considers itself the rightful owners of the Senkaku Islands. In one of few rare agreements, The People’s Republic of China and the Taiwanese government both agree that this land should be under Taiwanese control, as the Chinese government still considers Taiwan a part of China. These claims became politically vocal when these islands were returned to Japan. These claims became politically vocal after the United States returned the islands back to Japan in 1972.
Graphic courtesy of Gerard D’Albon / The Journal
The Senkaku islands have been causing turmoil in Eastern Asia for the past couple months and the tension is still rising.
Recently, China sent a fleet of 1000 commercial fishing ships to these islands as a symbol that the islands belong to China. This has sparked a lot of tension between the two governments, and widespread demonstrations against the Japanese have become common in major cities in China. In Beijing, hundreds of protesters attacked the Japanese embassy. Protesters have also stormed and closed many Japanese businesses in mainland China.These protests have stemmed from harbored anger over the “humiliation”
of the Chinese by the Japanese in the 1930’s and is continuing to furthering this tension. The Senkaku islands have become a large political focal point between the Chinese and Japanese governments. Both have historical claims of the islands, and both are unwilling to revoke their claims. Yet, these islands may not be claimed just because of historical means, but because of economic resources. It is speculated that there are underwater oil reserves near the islands. Both countries, Japan and
China, lack natural resources such as oil. Instead, this controversy may be over an oil field near a couple of empty islands. The Senkaku islands dispute between these two Asian powers has escalated severely over the past few months. They both claim ownership to a chain of islands that are important in resources and have historically been part of their nations. The tension caused by this dispute may eventually lead to bloodshed and lives lost if it is not resolved soon.
Freshman takes annual trip overseas to Japan Katie Lamar Serena LaFave, a freshman at GHS, has been taking trips to Japan every year since she was six months old. Accompanied by her parents, John and Satomi LaFave, the usual trip lasts a little less than a month. Enough time to “soak it all it in,” says Serena. “It’s really different there. Japan’s top values are education and respect. I was a very obnoxious child, but my grandmother taught me how to respect my elders,” she says. There are also many cultural differences, including some that may sound a bit unusual to us. “In Japan, it is really normal, even expected, when speaking to others to put yourself down. Turning down compliments is the right way to respond to them, or else it seems like you’re showing off.” She showed me pictures she has taken during all of her trips, including ones of her grandmother. When she goes to Japan she
stays with her grandmother in Okayama, a city located in southwest Japan, and the living arrangements are quite different. “The Japanese are very practical,” Serena says, “so it is normal to sleep on fold out mats at night. Then, in the morning, you fold them back up and tuck them away. You are suppose to make good use of the space.” Serena plans to go to Japan every year. She may even want to go to college there. She has a Japanese lesson every Sunday, led by a Japanese teacher in Japan. She learns over Skype,a video chat online. She’s says it “helps me learn the language quickly and efficiently.” LaFave’s annual Japan trips are filled with fun educational experiences that offer and a rich look into Asain culture as well as a chance to reunite with her family roots. Photo courtesy of Serena LaFave / The Journal
World and Cultures
Gangnam Style takes world by storm Continued from Page 1 Satirizing Gangnam’s self-importance, overconsumption, and pretentious wealth, the music video is ripe with clever references that demonstrate South Korea’s obsession with brand names and appearances. The young party-goers of Gangnam are not self-made, diligent millionaires, but trust-fund babies and wannabes, inexplicably preoccupied with conspicuous luxuries like expensive coffee and sports cars – usually skimping on essential needs in doing so. Because of this fixation on overspending to look wealthy, PSY seems to subtly suggest that the “Gangnam Style” wealth is not quite as great as it appears. In some defining
scenes of his video, we think he’s a hotshot on the beach, when the camera pans
Gangnam Style is wonderful weirdly wonderful.
out to reveal he’s actually on a children’s playground. He seems to be playing polo on a horse, when in reality he’s only on a merry-go-round. Instead of a nightclub, he dances his heart out on a bus full of older tourists.“Human society is so shallow. I feel pathetic just filming this,” PSY says in his behind-the-scenes “Mak-
ing of Gangnam Style” video. “Each frame by frame was so superficial.” Whether that’s true or not, however, one thing is for certain: PSY has absolutely made it big. But herein lies the vital question: is “Gangnam Style” simply a fleeting one-hit wonder, as so many pop stars have experienced, or does this truly mean the advent of Kpop success in America? “I think Korean music videos will become popular if they are all crazy,” student Lauren Kraushaar speculates. “Gangnam style is wonderful – weirdly wonderful.” Graphic courtesy of Liza Molloy/ The Journal
GHS senior travels to Russia and Scandinavia
Unexpected Russia trip creates unforgettable memories Haewon Hwang “Congratulations, Haewon! You’ve won the essay contest—and we’ll be making plans for the trip to Russia really soon!” chirped the unfamiliar voice from the telephone. I had no notion in my mind that I was going to win the trip to Russia. Fifteen weeks later, I stared at my name on the visa. It was my name, but it wasn’t; it was in Cyrillic. When driving from the Domodedovo airport, I found it hard to fall asleep— one of the first things I noticed about Russia was the roads. I’d like to say, “Oh, you get used to it after a while.” No, the roads are that bad, yet I haven’t quite been able to place why the roads in Russia are in such bad condition. Beautiful colors were everywhere: pastels in blue and yellow and orange and chapels striped in the most brilliant of gold and silver, reflective even on overcast days. We took a tour of Moscow in one whirlwind of a day. We hit the big at-
tractions like the Kremlin and St Basil’s Cathedral in Red Square, and were privileged enough to receive a special tour of the prestigious Moscow State University It was one of the first days of classes and the students looked no different than students at Harvard. Next stop: to Tula! Tula is to Moscow as Albany is to New York City. Tula, at first glance, seemed quite shabby. There were still buildings from the Soviet era that were crumbling, and the roads were even worse, if possible. But then I was exposed to the hospitality of the locals, treated to traditional dinner parties at the humble homes of simply brilliant hosts. I was also had the opportunity to meet Tulan high schoolers—and I’m proud to say that we are still keeping in touch. And if there is one thing, if I forget everything else, that I will never forget: the food. Every course in every meal was mouth-watering, even for a semi-picky eater such as myself. Two big cheers to Russian tradition and Russian food.
Photo by Haewon Hwang / The Journal
Backpacking in Scandinavia: one step at a time Haewon Hwang For two weeks this summer, my older sister, 19, and I, 17, backpacked across three countries: Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. This cluster of countries are often referred to as Scandinavia. When traveling in Scandinavia, we never had to worry about language barriers—everyone could speak English. We knew Scandinavia is known as an area of high living standards with high expenses. Luckily, we had the option of staying in hostels; the equivalent of decent hotel rooms, except you’re sharing that room with around four other people. We met different people every night—travelers came and went. The cuisine was largely made up of seafood: fresh salmon and herring. We tried the famous Swedish meatballs in a lovely café in Stockholm. We also tried pieces of reindeer, moose, and even steak of whale at the outdoor market in Bergen, Norway. In Denmark, we stayed in Copenha-
gen, the home of Hans Christian Andersen and Tycho Brahe, for two nights. In Sweden, we stayed in Stockholm, which was my favorite city. It offered so much— Djurgarden, which was a three mile long expanse of royal gardens, an open-air museum, a castle, three famous museums, long walks along the shore, and two private art galleries. In Norway, we went to Oslo for a couple of days. We got to see the famous painting, the Scream, by Edvard Munch. We went to Akershus castle fortress, which has been overlooking the sea since the 1290s. We then took a train to Bergen, the site of the Hanseatic wharf, on the opposite, western, coast of Norway. We stayed in a hostel on a camping ground along the steep fjords of Norway, and spent our time, hiking to the tops of waterfalls, mountaintops, farms along the fjord, and to the caves. It was an experience I will never forget and I hope to backpack again in the near future.
Photo by Haewon Hwang / The Journal
Journal October 2012
Guilderland on the candidates Mitt Romney
Barack Obama Jack Watson
resident Barack Obama is once again vying for the presidency. Come November, the nature of the next four years of the Nation will be decided, and we may have a new president occupy the oval office. If Obama continues to occupy the seat of power the country will continue along its path of improvement. Obama is running on a progressive platform, and in him, we see a distinguishing willingness to experiment, to look for new and specific solutions, and to work towards progress. Obama’s economic plans call for a tax increase on households making over $250,000 per year, which would increase revenue and reduce the national debt. Obama has stated that he is in favor of ending the Bush era tax cuts, which put the country nearly 1 trillion dollars in debt over the last ten years, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Romney states that he would do exactly as the Bush Administration did, and plans on cutting the tax rates for all families by 20%. Romney’s tax plan would reduce revenue and cripple efforts to curb the nation’s startlingly large debt. As we’ve seen in the Scandinavian states, by taking in taxes the Government can provide services that make life better for people, such as great health care, public transportation, and education. Looking forward, Obama’s foreign policy is built on his past efforts to end the war in Iraq and the withdraw the troops from Afghanistan. Obama is a strong supporter of the global effort to eliminate caches of nuclear weapons. He hosted talks with Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, on the discouragement of nuclear proliferation. He’s stepped away from the Cold War idea that a Nuclear Mexican Standoff is the only way to ensure peace with plans to slash the already cut nuclear stockpile by 80% or more. Obama’s healthcare plan is set to make two major changes in the current US healthcare system by 2014. One of the largest changes in healthcare would be the elimination of pre-existing conditions. Everyone would be charged the same, regardless. The other change would be that if you can absolutely afford insurance, but decline to buy it, you will be charged a fee. This is to counterbalance the first change;
Kali Cavanagh & James Mesiti otherwise, no one would buy insurance until they knew they needed it, and insurance companies would collapse. Obama’s medical insurance plan covers everyone, but charges those who, have the ability to, but choose not to buy insurance. Obama has started a process of improvement but imp r ove m e n t t a ke s
time. He came into office with a crisis in the country and his first two years were a decline because of the crisis begun in President Bush’s last year in office. but in 2010 when the jobless numbers peaked at about 10% Obama’s efforts finally made a dent and unemployment reversed and began a steady decline. As the voting season reels in, and people are sitting down with their families trying to decide who to cast their vote for, they should ask themselves whether the 8 years before Obama were really worth the fun of a slight tax break, two new wars, and an economic collapse. If they want to see a country with an experienced leader who will fight for continued change rather than more of the old, and really think and work ahead toward a country that will be consistently wealthy and healthy using detailed ideas and creativity then the choice is clear. They should choose Barack Obama and lay the groundwork today.
f you aren’t fluent in the language of politics, you might wonder why people are calling this election one of the most important of its time. This is because four years ago, President Obama made some promises that he has not since kept. For the most part, modern politics is a nitty-
gritty battle Graphic by Brandon Das/ The Journal b e t w e e n two distinguished parties, but this election is different. There is no need to overcomplicate things; the breakdown speaks for itself. One of the cornerstones of Obama’s 2008 campaign was about how he could lower the unemployment rate to under 5% with stimulus and government funded training programs. How have such programs fared? Unemployment is 7.8% and has been at steady high levels since Obama took office in 2008. 1.3 million people have left the workforce since. Worse yet, 50% of college graduates cannot find jobs and have to pay loans that are 25% higher. Romney’s plan to counter unemployment is much more effective than Obama’s has been. Mitt Romney wants to free businesses and individuals of government regulations that have recently hampered business growth. For example, Romney proposes repealing legislation that causes businesses to go through many needless requirements that waste money, money that could be used instead
to expand and provide jobs. Romney will also restructure the largely ineffective 47 training programs that Obama has formed. He’ll consolidate them into fewer, but more significant programs, while centering as much activity as possible in each one. Electing Romney as president will allow the private sector to aid in effective training programs unlike Obama’s. President Obama promised to cut the national deficit in half. Essentially, this has been another wish in the well. On average, the debt held by each American is roughly $50,000. This number is constantly increasing, and by the time you read this article it will only be higher. Think about this, when Obama took office in 2008 the national debt was $10 trillion and now four years later, the national debt exceeds $16 trillion. The math is simple. In four years he has accumulated over $6 trillion dollars in debt. Thanks Barack. The proper way to lower the nation’s debt is not to excessively and inefficiently spend what you don’t have, as President Obama has so gingerly showed us, but by spending where it is necessary. This is one of the bases of Romney’s plan to lower the debt. Repealing Obamacare is a prime example. By doing this, the government would save $95 billion per year that was used on a program that ultimately gave the federal government unaffordable obligations. It should be a statewide program, not a national one. Another way Romney would decrease the national debt is through more adequate taxes. He plans to bring down marginal tax rates across the board by 20%. This will allow corporations and small businesses to grow, in addition to the average middle class family. It doesn’t take a politician to see that Obama, who wooed us with his sweet talk and promise of change, has only left us unfulfilled and in a thicker mess than we were in before. The solution is simple: Mitt Romney. He is a master of investment and business, and might be the one man who could get us out of the sinkhole that the Obama administration has inevitably led us into. This begs the question: why should we give Obama four more years to fall short of our expectations?
Journalism is dead Isaac Malsky On September 30th, the New Orleans Times–Picayune published its last daily paper. The great paper, which had only 6 years before won two pulitzer prizes for its coverage of hurricane Katrina, was forced to shift into a schedule where they only published 3 days a week and to push dozens of reporters into early retirement. It was a bad omen for the decline of the newspaper industry and brought to the forefront the fact that Journalism is dying. In the last decade, the Internet has done damage to both the revenue of newspapers and their circulation. Internet allows for unlimited free news at the price of reliability. Anyone can be a journalist, and consumers often have to decide for themselves what they can trust. The Huffington Post is not nearly as large or prestigious as The New York Times, but recently, the search volume for the two has been similar and The Huffington Post has surpassed it in terms of web traffic. In the last ten years, stock for the New York Times has declined in value from a peak of nearly fifty dollars
per share to its current value, close to 10 dollars. Greg Stapleton, the Circulation Community Manager for the Times Union, has a different take on the matter. When asked whether he saw the rise of the Internet as a challenge or an opportunity, he said, “I think it’s not as clear cut as that.
Journalism isn’t dead, but newspapers are. The internet allows us to get the news out to more people…[and]… cover things differently.” Mr. Stapleton went on to say, “One of our most visited things on our website is our scene gallery.” In a physical paper, the limited space restricts the amount of content that can be shown, especially for photographs and graphics. So despite Stapleton’s protest his “covering things differently” is a clear shift from print journalism. Despite the variety of Internet sites providing news, Stapleton still thinks newspapers will still have a permanent
handhold in the future. “Sports are the perfect example. Sports analysis is still present in the papers even though the scores are quickly available through social media,” said Mr. Stapleton. Analysis is also available online and all over television screens and thus eliminates the demand for expensive newspaper analysis. One attempt at survival that newspapers use to find a balance between readership and revenue are paywalls. Many news websites now place a limit on the number of articles that can be viewed per week, or per month, before a subscription is required. The influx of free news has caused consumers to devalue investigative journalism and reliability. Why pay when you can read bloggers take on the headlines for free?
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print vs. online,” Mr. Stapleton likes to think. “It’s a synergy. If the two don’t work together then neither will succeed. News will never go out of fashion. As long as there are interesting stories and reporters who want to be heard, news will always find its way out. Newspapers on the other hand, have already seen their day. There may still be holdouts and papers that survive for several decades, but eventually they too will die. Journalism isn’t dead, but newspapers are.
For now, not all newspapers are feeling the heat of the information age. The Times Union recently purchased a 14 million dollar printing press and is relying more and more on revenue raised from their website. A new system for advertising local businesses, called “Search Graphic by Gerard D’Albon/ The Journal Revenue Optimization” allows for more personalized ads. “In many ways it’s not
Two party system kills progress Andrew Fedorov “What would you consider the greatest spectator sport in the country today?” asked Frank Skellington in the 1958 film The Last Hurrah. After a few guesses by his nephew, he answered, “It’s politics, That’s right politics.” But from its inception, the political game began to go awry. It’s virility was diminished by the growth of parties and the elimination of options. If our country had not been forced under this two party hegemony, new ideas might have been taken into consideration, progress might have occurred, our democracy could have accurately represented its citizens, and we might not have been in the rut we are in today. The upcoming presidential election is not free from this grim dominion. Though the winner is not yet known, it can be taken for granted that he will be either a Democrat or Republican. Sure, the Libertarian Party’s running Gary Johnson and the Green Party’s running Jill Stein, but neither of them really have a chance. The last time someone who wasn’t a Republican or a
Democrat held the executive office was in 1850 when Millard Fillmore, a Whig (the party which soon after became the Republicans), gained the office. The most successful independent presidential candidate in recent years was Ross Perot who in 1992 only won 18.9% of the popular vote, and 0 electoral college votes. Even in lesser office, an independent can hardly gain any support. Currently in Congress the Senate has 51 Democrats, 47 Republicans and only two independents. The House has 191 Democrats, 241 Republicans and no independents. That’s two independents for all of the 532 members of Congress. The existence of this duopoly has been a threat to democracy from the start. Howard Zinn described the reasons behind the formation of the two party system in his classic People’s History of the United States. He said “to give people a choice between two different parties and allow them, in a period of rebellion, to choose the slightly more democratic one was an ingenious mode of control.”
Its purpose today is to generalize a set of values so the masses of people who don’t follow politics can vote in a block for someone that they identify with because of an almost entirely arbitrary name (do democrats value democracy more than republics?) and a vague set of ideas. Those voters can live part of the
From its inception, the political system began to go awry. conformist dream of any majority valuing democracy by joining the triumphant masses. But they should not take this appealing option. If they do, their real needs will not be properly represented. They should vote for the person, not for the person who they believe will win, who truly appeals to them most. Some may say this is a waste of a vote, but voting for what you want
and voting for what you need is the only way one should vote. The system that lacks alternatives creates an environment where new ideas are no longer put out to be weathered by fierce criticism. Politicians who have specific views and espouse new ideas appeal to a dedicated minority. Those politicians who are vague enough for everyone and espouse exclusively old party principles gain a majority. Thus politicians with new ideas are thrown by the wayside. As a result parties have crowded out radicalism from our political spectrum and it is no longer possible for new ideas to enter American politics. What this uniformity among options has created is stagnation. What we need is progress. If each candidate was seen as a party of one and the philosophy of supporting a candidate exclusively for their ideas and experience was taken up by the American people, ideas would again have a chance at competition, progress would start anew, and democracy would have a second chance in America.
Graphic by Jack Watson/ The Journal
Is this spot taken? Zack Cleary Those of us who drive are given a majority of the freedoms we want at this school. Not all, but a majority. As we become older and start climbing tiers in the hierarchy of our school, we become more in tune with being on our own, making decisions and having more freedoms. One of which is gaining the privilege to drive to school. Let it be in our car or our parent’s car, it can become a symbol on our campus of the freedom we gain. Of course with freedom comes responsibility and taking risks - responsibility on our part for our vehicles and risk the school takes that we might not be the best nor most responsible drivers. Thus for the school to require a small stipulation of a meager twenty five dollar price tag to fund and regulate this enormous process does not seem unreasonable. It’s logical. For the past three years, enforcing the parking permit policy has been an almost impossible task. As Mr. Brooks put it, “there was no way to enforce it prior to this year” and this has instilled the false notion that there is no need to get a parking permit since no one would get caught. I can even say I gained this rebellious spirit for a couple weeks until
I realized avoiding the effortless task was more detrimental than beneficial. But this false notion has, in turn, changed into a movement of unnecessary protest about permits this year. Due to this fact, as the rumors have stated, the DMV is now involved in matching up the cars with their respective owners and turning in the students. “Now, the student doesn’t even have to be registered here. We can look up the license plate numbers through the DMV,” Mr. Brooks tells me as he pulls out a stack of scrap paper with the letters and numbers of license plates written on them. This stack was collected by the employees walking around the parking lot in the morning. Though it is still early in the process, plates are already being collected, so there’s no use in postponing the inevitable. The new confidence gained by students that believe they can slide by underneath the radar of the school should not last for long, because there eventually will be penalties. As for the cost complaint: it’s only the small amount of 25 dollars. If a student has a car, he or she could most likely afford a $25 permit. If you can’t afford the price of the parking permit, then you probably should save your gas money and
ride the bus instead, a free method of transportation that seniors surprisingly dread. Some might say they won’t pay it because the money will go to somewhere unwanted, lost somewhere in the system. But as soon as the money is received it goes into a special account in the district office for the parking fund, as told by Mr. Brooks. This money in the account then goes to fund the process of getting the permits for the next semester and the labor of maintaining the process. After that, the money comes back into the school. Right back to us, right back to the
Graphic by Rachel Gingrich / The Journal
students and faculty. You’re paying to be able to have a complete new freedom of driving in and to help out your school. There are no reasonable complaints against our parking permits policy. It’s not a hassle to buy a permit, it won’t create a dent in your wallets, and it prevents the inevitable warnings and detentions. “Parking is privilege,” M. Brooks tells me, which I believe. It is a privilege which our school has entrusted us with. Driving in is not a right; it’s a freedom which our school provides us and that we are lucky to have.
Five new features of the iPhone 5 Jamie LeComb
There has been some vigorous debate about whether the new iPhone 5 has enough of a difference from its previous model, the iPhone 4, to be worth buying. The iPhone starts at 200 dollars for the 16GB, 300 for the 32GB and 400 for the 64GB. But is the expensive gadget worth getting? Why not get the equally impressive iPhone 4S for nearly half the cost?
The iPhone 5 is the first to have a larger display.
The iPhone 5 is the first iPhone in Apple history to have a larger display. The new slick and responsive screen complements the size of the display for
maximum user enjoyment. Not only is it longer, but it’s the thinnest and lightest iPhone to ever hit the market, weighing in at only 112 grams. Many worry about the iPhone 5’s durability, but this is nothing a phone case cannot solve. Is the new size and shape enough for the price? Probably not, but it doesn’t end there. The iPhone 5 is the first of the series to feature LTE capability. Apple tried to feature LTE in the iPhone 4, but didn’t have the proper technology at the time. LTE makes Internet use and downloads with the iPhone faster than ever before. The iPhone 5 combines an effective A5 processor with the new LTE software to create the highly impressive A6 processing chip. The A6 chip is almost twice as fast and battery efficient as the iPhone 4’s A5 chip, making it faster than the comparable Samsung Galaxy processing chip.
Although this new processor is impressive, iPhone 5 users aren’t as happy with the new lighting connector used for charging because it’s not compatible with the previous iHomes and chargers. This means that if you’re looking to buy the iPhone 5, be prepared to buy the new and expensive accessories with it. The new turn by turn spoken directions and panoramic photos are also new to the iPhone 5. But if you have the downloaded IOS 5 on your iPhone 4 or 4S, it will work just as efficiently, and also save you the cost of buying a new phone. A
Photo courtesy of apple.com
feature unique to iPhone 5 owners is the ability to use Facetime anywhere. The previous model could only use Facetime from places with Wifi, therefore limiting its effectiveness. The iPhone 5 has reached record breaking sales and profits during its opening week of sales, but is this attributed to the nostalgia carried with the Apple name or is it the breath-taking display and lightning fast capabilities? Although the iPhone 5 is simply fascinating, it is worth feeling and using the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 5 before digging into your wallet.
Regarding those courtyards everyone wonders about
Green grass, unused benches that are actually clean, fresh air that doesn’t reek of teenage sweat or perfume... Can you think of what place in our school this is? Probably not, seeing as how us students rarely get to spend time in one of our own school courtyards. The grass is mowed, the trees and bushes trimmed, and the doors locked. Occasionally some higher power takes pity on us in the summer and allows us to go outside for a few brief minutes during lunch. The courtyards could be put to much better use, in all sorts of weather. First of all, we should have the option to eat lunch in there all the time. Amelia Schramm voices her opinion, “Courtyards should have less restrictions and be more open, so that we may utilize them more efficiently.” Temperature sensitivity is quite relative, so the opinion of the individual teachers and students may vary. Last time I checked, most of us still had
at least a small vestige of a brain left with which we can make our own decisions, at least concerning trivial matters. If someone is unsusceptible to cold, or chooses to wear a winter coat in school, should they really be prohibited from eating their lunch in a snowdrift? Another great use I highly advocate is courtyard classrooms. Every teacher, especially in the humanities, can incorporate or adapt a few lessons into outside lessons. It would be like we’re in recess (ah, the good memories) rather than in a stuffy concrete-walled classroom. It would vitalize class discussions and even the subject matter. This is one of many ways to get students to participate in and contribute to the material they’re learning, so that it will not only be more memorable, but will induce a positive atmosphere and lower stress levels. Every class should consider having three lessons in a courtyard every school year, since it brings a welcome fresh and invigorating break to normal
school routine. Gayathri Subramaniam agrees with this issue saying, “We should be able to go out there more to study, eat, and just hang out.” Clark McKowen, a published college professor, has tried outside classes with his students, reporting that there is a considerable improvement in most creative
Courtyards oh courtyards, how beautiful art thou.
genius. Science backs this up, since the brain works at a higher efficiency when it’s receiving oxygen at more regular intervals. You can rest assured that you are getting more oxygen in an open green area than in a building where the windows are seldom opened, perhaps for fear of unleashing that monster we all know as utter boredom into the world.
Eliza Smith eloquently phrases the overall wholesomeness of courtyards with her declarative statement, “Courtyards oh courtyards, how beautiful art thou.” Need I mention specific applications for different courses and interests? Witness the vigor of plants in biology, observe gravity in an all-natural environment for physics, try to find the atoms inside a blade of grass in chemistry, get creative and original ideas for stories and poems, breathe life into your art. There are, of course, many classes, teachers, and students who make everything entertaining and exuberant. But for those of you out there who take no particular interest in much of anything at all, consider starting now. Start by suggesting courtyard classes to your teachers. If we must go to this strange institution they call school, why not enjoy it? As Hunter S. Thompson once said, “Everything worth doing at all is worth doing with excellence.”
theJournal October 2012
Sports Precious: cross country’s talisman Lucas Balzer and Jake HIll
Most professional sports teams have mascots. UC Santa Cruz has the Banana Slugs, Greendale Community College has the Human Beings, and The Cleveland Indians have a mascot so racist that it shall not be named. For Guilderland Cross Country, however, there has never been a real mascot aside from a vague connotation of some kind of line-thing. That is, until now. Enter “Precious”. Precious is the Guilderland Cross Country team’s newest addition, and until very recently, favorite plaything. Precious is a symbol for grueling work, outstanding ethics, and hard earned victory. Precious is also a 1.5 foot tall plastic horse. Originally procured from an unwilling teammate’s kid sister, Precious has been with the team since the Indoor Track season. Precious started off as a running joke; you’d leave it around somewhere funny (locker room stall, on top of the bleachers, etc), people would find it, and laughs were had. However, as the season went on people became more possessive of Precious, keeping him/her close rather than hiding it in plain sight. People started to take a liking to her/him, and the idea of finally having a mascot of our own. As the “snow” thawed and the Outdoor Track & Field season began, the bond grew even tighter. The main caretaker of Precious was the team’s favorite and most attractively bearded athlete, Pranav Nayak. As he continued to bring Precious to our every practice and meet the bond grew to be unbreakable, especially during the hardships of a long workout, or an unusually grueling temperature. An especially noteworthy incident was
when the emaciated distance running team came within 10ths of a second of beating the varsity sprint team at their coveted 4x200 race. This wouldn’t have been possible, in their opinion, without Precious watching us from the field with bright, hopeful eyes. As the seasons turned from spring to summer, and the Cross Country season started reeling in, the majority of the team went to their Adirondack training camp, Skye Farm. Another
permanently deflating him in a fit of Benadryl induced anger. Jerry was buried with full military honors in the spot behind the cabin where everyone peed. His loss was mourned intensely by the entirety of the team on the car ride home. The thought of the runners using a plastic horse may seem very strange to some, but to Guilderland and it’s alumni it’s anything but. Brian RhodesDevey, Guilderland’s best distance
team member, Knute Armstrong, brought an inflatable pink flamingo who they immediately named Jerry; The Dirty Bird. Jerry became just as close to them in a week as Precious had gotten in 4 months. It was a magical 4 days, training alongside not 1, but two mascots. There was never a quiet night in the cabins with them around, as I myself can attest. Tragically, Jerry was killed in what is now known as the “Campfire Debacle”. The incident refers to when one of our team members stabbed Jerry,
runner has experience with mascots as well. While on Texas’ Track Team, a new mascot was born for them as well. This mascot was a flamingo. Not a live flamingo, just your regular everyday lawn flamingo. As BRD himself attests; “We chose the flamingo because it was something that was completely random. It would have made sense to go with a longhorn for something of that nature but we chose a flamingo because it was about us. More of a brotherhood thing than a school symbol. It was something so obscure that it could only have
Photo by Lucas Balzer/ The Journal
meaning to us.” The flamingo mascot served as an inspiration for the runners and soon Precious, like the Flamingo, had become a full fledged team mascot as well. Recently, however, Precious has been the subject of a lot of controversy. While there’s still a group of Precious loyalists, many team members have taken up Jerry as their mascot following a bad performance at the Guilderland Invy that they blame Precious for. As team member Pranav Nayak humbly states; ““Loyal” is a strange word, I wouldn’t describe myself as being loyal to precious, not anymore...I’d like to keep precious around, I really do, but when the team sees it as a bad omen it’s hard to justify using it as a mascot, a morale booster, or as a joke. It’s even more saddening with the fact that we lost Jerry only a few weeks ago as well....Everything after precious will seem like a cheap copy.” Many of the runners who witnessed Precious for the short lived part of the cross country season would most likely describe Precious as just an odd fad. A select few know better. The people who were there with Precious since day one. The people who witnessed Precious be considered as a good luck charm and then swiftly fall from grace to a point where many of the runners feel a strong animosity towards it. Those are the people who know the true meaning of Precious and realize that even though it was short lived, it brought the team much closer, and made it a more enjoyable experience. Precious and Jerry’s story is so very far from over, and if the Red Sea wants to come to a meet and chant “Do It For Precious/Jerry!” that’d be more than fine, too.
Johnson achieves goal, improvements to come Trevor Laicha After twelve years of being the athletic director at Guilderland, Wayne Bertrand has retired. He didn’t have much trouble passing the torch to his predecessor, the new athletic director Regan Johnson. Johnson, who grew up in Ballston Spa, was family friends with Bertrand’s family since he was a baby. Johnson’s father coached three of Bertrand’s brothers in wrestling Johnson later went on to wrestle at SUNY Brockport. He wrestled all four years at Brockport while he earned his degree in Physical Education. He student taught at Guilderland in 1996 and became the varsity wrestling coach the next year. Johnson then coached the varsity wrestling team from 1997-2007 before becoming Assistant Athletic Director. Johnson said he’s “always had the goal of becoming Athletic Director.” When asked about how he prepared for taking
over the Athletic Director position, he noted his networking and how he got his name out to other sections in the state. He also said that Bertrand’s mentoring helped him prepare for the job but he followed up with, “you can’t prepare for everything”. When Bertrand retired and Johnson filled his role, the school decided to cut the Assistant Athletic Director position. To take some of the slack off of Johnson, the school appointed two faculty managers, one in the district office and one at the middle school. This has led to, “a lot of the time talking on the iPhone.” Johnson brings with him several great goals and new work ethics for Guilderland Athletics. He hopes to work on “improving facilities, supporting coaches, [and] concussion management,” and to attend games of every sport so they know that they are supported.
“High school athletics is all about life lessons,” he said. “Success can be measured in different ways,” not just with sectional or state championships. An
interesting statistic he had to back that up was that 80% of CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies played high school sports. It’s hard to argue with that.
Photo by Sam Pitkin / The Journal
page 20 (theJournal)
Bump, set, KILL!
Lady Dutch volleyball looks forward with high hopes for sectionals Kristin Bourgeois They don’t call it an attack for nothing. The Lady Dutch volleyball team is enjoying an nearly perfect season after eleven matches. However, this is not a result of luck. A lot of hard work, determination, and teamwork have helped the 12 members of the team continue to speed toward one of the greatest girls’ volleyball seasons in school history. The team is comprised of seniors Quincy Kinzel (co-captain), Ally VanDoren (co-captain), Hayley Mattice (co-captain), Vickie Mausler, Taylor Litwin, Michaela Tersmette, and Kayla Meyers; juniors Darina Relyea and Courtney Taylor; sophomores Jess VanDoren and Jennifer Hoffman; freshman Becca Straubel and Coach Jessica Allen. The senior-heavy team may seem like a possible problem. However, Hayley Mattice couldn’t disagree more and said, “The team dynamics are fantastic! We don’t even look at each other as different ages; we just see each other as one big family.” Family seems to be the buzzword this season regarding the team’s success. Having competed in several close matches already, there have been plenty of opportunities for the ladies to turn on each other. Fortunately, no such opportunities have been taken. “This season, our team has been so much closer than last year. We’ve become a big family,” said Michaela Tersmette. The team’s emphasis on working together has been an integral part of their success. As it was a bit of an issue last year and may have cost the team a few points-and even a few matches-it was important for Coach Allen to address some of those issues this fall.
There have already been several highlights to this season and every match has been interesting. The game against Shenendehowa was nerve wracking and drew quite a large crowd for both teams. The Lady Dutch won the match in 3 sets. The first two games were won by a very small margin of JUST two points (25-23 for both), but the third set was won with a 9-point margin at 2516. This was quite the empowering 3-0 set win for the Guilderland Lady Dutch because they lost to Shen in the Section II Class AA Finals last season. Another highlight of the year was the Saratoga tournament; the second of three weekend tournaments in a row. The
Lady Dutch went all the way to the end and beat the hosts to win the whole tournament. Everyone plays a huge role in all of the team’s successes. Aside from the usually mentioned stars like Quincy Kinzel, Ally VanDoren, and Kayla Myers, newer team members are also causing quite a stir. Freshman Rebecca Straubel has burst onto the scene, having recently moved to Guilderland from Texas. She’s already a regular starter and she deserves it! Jess VanDoren has also been a huge contributor to the team, after having improved leaps and bounds from last season. She no longer gets called for lifts or double touches, and has already
Above: The Lady Dutch stand together prior to their game versus Burnt Hills.
racked up several assists this season Individual performance is definitely important to the team, but it’s how they work as one that determines their success. The team “work[s] really well together under pressure,” said Taylor Litwin. That’s a huge factor contributing to the number of wins the team has under their belt this season. However, as Ally VanDoren summed it up, “It’s not about winning. We’re very good at playing up to the level of our competition. But the most important thing is that we’re going out there and having a good time every game.” Let’s hope the Lady Dutch volleyball team can keep up this forward momentum into sectionals!
Photo courtesy of Mohona Sengupta / The Journal
GHS Sports: Standings, Stats, & Upcoming Games As of 10/22/12
Boys’ Soccer Bethlehem Guilderland Columbia Colonie Averill Park Mohonasen
7-1 6-2 4-4 4-4 2-6 2-6 1-7
Photo courtesy of Lucas Balzer/ The Journal
8 5 5 2
Above: Junior Joe Cornell jukes out a Bethlehem defender at homecoming.
Sat. 10/31 Suburban Council Championships
Mon. 10/22 @ Colonie - 4PM
Mon. 10/22 vs. Colonie - 4PM
13-0-2 10-3-2 6-7-2 4-7-2 4-9-0 2-10-0
GHS Touchdown Leaders Micaiah Henningham Jake Smith Joe Cornell Stephen Polsinelli
Suburban Council South
Class AA Empire Division Shenendehowa CBA Guilderland Bethlehem Ballston Spa Saratoga Albany
As of 10/22/12
Thurs. 11/1 @ Shen - Section II Diving Championships - 4PM Sat. 11/3 @ Shen - Section II Championships - 3PM
Guilderland Bethlehem Mohonasen Columbia Averill Park Colonie
11-3-1 10-4-1 5-9-1 4-10-1 3-11-0 1-12-0
Tues. 10/23 vs. Saratoga - 4PM
GIRLS’ VOLLEYBALL: Mon. 10/22 vs. Colonie - 4PM