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Volume 3. Issue 1

ISSUE 1 2010

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TABLE OF CONTENTS Editor-in-Chief

Jaime Sunwoo

Chief of Journalist

Maria Plotkina

Director of Photography Layout Editors

Club Adviser

Benny Lam Mary Turgeon Jaime Sunwoo

ARTArtist 4

T

Artist Feature: Benny Lam

ON THE COVER 8

Comebacks

OPINION

Garret Sokoloff 7

Boys vs. Girls Ratio

MOVIES Journalists

Mari Kroin Rachel Berger Maria Plotkina Jaime Sunwoo Louis Peralte Ariana King

11 The End of the World... In 3D?

FOOD 12 Street Food

IN THE LIFE OF 14 Where I Live: Stuyvesant Town 18 One Time...

If you have any comments, questions, or submissions, please email lagartmag@gmail.com 2

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A R T

featured

believers of the idea that the academia of the student. Thus my crazily neat notes and handwriting is born. And yes, it does art since “being neat = being a perfectionist”. I do unfortunately have the habit of spending hours to produce a “super crisp” piece of artwork. (P.S. Little smudges and stains really bother me!)

Interviewed by Ariana King LGM: What different mediums have you tried? Which did you like comfortable

to

use?

LGM: Which art classes have you taken at LaGuardia and which have been the best/ most helpful?

BL: Wow. I think I’ve tried everything humanly possible! Just kidding about that. I wish I have but I know I will. At the moment, I’m stuck in the pencil/pen zone. A little color here and there doesn’t hurt too (colored pencils, oil paints). I would say I’m quite versatile when it comes to what medium to work with.

Benny Lam, My Green New York, Pen and Ink, 7”x7’’.

LGM: What’s the weirdest/ most interesting piece of art you made?

of my arts are eccentric enough to make your mind boggle. But recently I have found myself to be very political and a bit of a tree-hugger when it comes to making art. Treehugger in the sense that I

Benny Lam, Save Bake-sale!, Pen and Ink, 9’’X12”.

BL: Weirdest? Most Interesting?...I tend to play on the safe side of the road so I would say none

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environmental awareness. I like to incorporate symbols and subliminal messages behind my art so that’s something interesting I guess? LGM: Do you think you’ll be going into art in the future as a career? (If not, will art help your job at all?) BL: Pursuing an art related something I would consider but with that being said, things do tend to be a bit tougher for the artists. That’s why I want to not

only get an art education but also an academic one so I won’t end up drawing portraits by a stand in Central Park. I do know for sure that art will always be LGM: You have super neat handwriting and beautiful notes! Does this have anything to do with your super-crisp art style? Or maybe I’m wrong? BL: “Super-Crisp!” I like the sound of that! (It kind of made me want to grab a bite of fried chicken to go) Well my obsessive neatness caused by the so-called “Asian stereotype”. I was actually raised in Hong Kong; and it’s true they actually punish kids there for not writing neatly. My parents are very strong

BL: We all have taken the fundamental SP classes so that’s unnecessary. My electives for junior year were Photography (I took both semester of photography), pen and ink and anatomy. For senior year, I took Architecture but I am now in Advanced Painting. Of all of the and Architecture to be most helpful and rewarding. I do wish that I can have more time in Architecture. LGM: You have really cool shirt designs. Tell me about the process of making them. How do you come up with new designs and can you explain the reason you chose to do the designs you did? Will you print a design someone personally requests? (Give contact info if you want to attract customers) BL: Wow that’s a heck lot of questions packed into one. [laughter] First of all, thank you for the compliment. I really appreciate it when people enjoy my art. Now

Top: Benny Lam, Corn “Beef”, Stencil, Acrylic, Fabric Paint, 16”x16”. Bottom: Benny Lam, 21st Century National Bird, Acrylic, Mixed Media, 16”x16”.

looking back at all of my shirts, I realized that I have quite a lot of variety. I still remember there was a time when I only had two shirts to show people. The designs are all quite basic; at least for the repeating ones. I look for objects that are popular images in advertisement, like coke, stereo and T.V. But recently I started to make shirts that make a statement. Once again, like I’ve mentioned before, I am really political lately, so some of it is

designs. I am always open for suggestion of designs and yes I do make custommade t-shirts. You can request one of my shirts by contacting me by sending a note to UFATLAMB@ on Facebook. I used to my shirts, but I have yet to update it with the new designs. So this is my t-shirt business! Who knows if I can make enough to pay for my college tuition? 5 ISSUE 1 2010


OPINION

Boys vs. Girls Ratio By Maria Plotkina

Benny Lam, Radio, Stenci and Fabric Paint on T-Shirt.

LGM: pretty

Your cool,

logo is explain?

BL: HAHAHA! Well my logo is a cup of milk with a straw coming out of the letter “t”. For those of you who don’t know, and still don’t know, my real name is Yiufat Lam. Yes, you pronounce it “You fat lamb!” Since it had been a highlighter of my high school years, and also a great conversation starter, I have learned to embrace my name. That is why my line of T-shirt is proudly stamped with my “UFATLAMB” logo. You will the entire cup, then the FAT and LAMB should be kind of obviously spelled out. Yup so it’s a cup of milk, lamb milk if you’d like. UFATLAMB. LGM: How was the whole senior art show experience? What can you say about Anything you would have changed if you could do it again? (Anything random you want to mention) BL: Stressful but rewarding! 6

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Benny Lam, Weapon of Mind Destruction, Stenci and Fabric Paint on T-Shirt.

show since all the college aids are all due around the same time the show opens. But just that feeling of being in a show, working together with other fellow artists in LaG, it was one heck of an experience I will not forget. Of course, when working in a group, things do get time, but we all managed to pull everything together in the end. I just want to give some special thanks to Ms. Currier, Mr. Stehele, Kat, Harlie, Urara, Ren, everyone in the show! There was one all-nighter, two 3 hours power naps, countless dumpster dives, hours of drilling and being a tech major, a week came to school everyday during Regents Week), a bitter-sweet-almostthought-we-wouldn’tmake-it reception night and one happy ending! out how to disassemble everything that we built.

LGM: COLLEGE! Apply to art schools? Hear back from anyone yet? Anything to tell to prospective art college students? BL: Oh college! Well I am actually working on my, scratch that, cramming in my home test for Cooper RISD home test and sent it out today, which is about a week late (But got a generous extension). But I’m really not all for conservatories. As I have mentioned, I want to have a well rounded education in both art and academia, so I applied to many private colleges mainly. That doesn’t mean that I’m giving up on art. It’s just so that I can still have art on the side but more focus on the academics. No. I applied regular decision to all my schools my fate ‘til mid March or early April. Oh prospective art college students! Do ART! APPLY FOR THE SENIOR ART SHOW! SKETCH! DO

(continued on page 19)

Remember kindergarten, when your teacher would line all the students in two even rows, girls on one side and boys on the other, and you'd walk down the hallway to the bathroom or water fountain next to each other? If this was still the custom in high school, at LaGuardia it would be impossible. Sometimes it seems that people exaggerate their tales about the lack of boys at our school. Surely there must be some hidden enclaves of boys in every grade... right? No. The percentage of girls at LaGuardia is 75% and the percentage of boys is 25%, making the ratio an even 3:1; three girls to each boy. I had to pause for a few ing that statistic, as I hadn't realized just how extreme the discrepancy was. It's easy to write off the complaints of girls (and some boys) at LaGuardia as typical teenage whining, and pay no further mind to it. However, perhaps the issue is more deep-seated than that and requires some more consideration than it is currently given. First, though LaGuardia is essentially a pretty diverse school where all kinds of people with all kinds of interests are represented, in terms of gender it's like living in a bubble. New York City

itself is more or less evenly split, which means that the numbers at our school are, to say the least, extremely skewed. This has given us LaGuardia students a different outlook on life- and perhaps a different set of priorities. When making my initial college list, I actually crossed off colleges with more than 65% girls solely because of that point- because I'm tired of attending what sometimes seems like an all-girls school without having signed up for one. I am certainly not

“Though LaGuardia is essentially a pretty diverse school where all kinds of people with all kinds of interests are represented, in terms of gender it's like living in a bubble.” the only one, though this is probably not the best method to follow in cutting down a college list. We students are not the only ones to have noticed the issue. Last year's school boys seem to have a pattern of doing worse than girls in the academics at LaGuardia. The proposed solution? Seat the boys in the front rows in classrooms and engaging them more in activities in order to counter the 'distractions' keeping them from their

academics. Whether or not this plan could ever be put to serious use, it provides some legitimacy for all the of the students themselves. The opinion of the general female public seems to be that many boys at LaGuardia are entirely too self-absorbed and self-interested, simply because they are such a rarity. The girls, in turn, tend to get tired of spending so much time around only each other. As a female, I can't speak for the boys, but I know that I always feel a little bit surprised and displaced when hanging out outside of school with a group where the ratio is equallet alone a group where there are at least one or two more boys than girls. It remains to be seen how this mentality will affect us in college and further on. The main issue with this situation is that there is no reasonable solution. The only thing LaGuardia can do is accept more boys- and if LaGuardia starts accepting more boys while paying less attention to the quality of their applications and auditions, not only will it be extremely unfair to equally talented girls, it might compromise the level of talent and dedication at the school. All we can do is accept it as one of those annoying but unique LaGuardia quirks and start to look at it as a somewhat amusing fact of life rather than a serious irritation. ISSUE 1 2010

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COMEBACKS Sci-Fi

media. With the release of ET, Star Wars, Startrek, Terminator, and other pop culture staples, Sci- Fi was the standard. People wanted to be Obi Wan and Luke Skywalker, they wished to kick ass like the Ghostbusters; it and over dramatized movies hit theaters, people seemed to lose their inner Yoda and Captain Kirk. Sci-Fi turned into a geek obsession. Star Trekkies were left to hide away in their own conventions and parodies such as “Star Wreck” began popping up. It seemed as if Science Fiction would never regain its former glory that is until recently. With the release of Star Wars: Episode III- Revenge of the Seth, the remake of Star Trek, the reintroduction of superheroes, and the restoration of mass Sci-Fi has returned. It inspires some of today’s biggest fashion and media trends; people can’t seem to get enough. --- Mari Kroin Courtesy of rottentomatoes.com

3D Movies - Without a doubt, everyone has pretty much realized that a generous amount of movies today are being released in 3D. 3D movies are a-comin’ back! “When were they ever in?” some of you may ask. I for what dates back as far as 1934 with the Lumiere 3D tests, but in my heart I know that 3D boomed during the 50s and 80s and here it comes again! Embrace the graduation from cyan and magenta cardboard spectacles to stereoscopic lenses! Enjoy! ----Louis Peralte

Courtesy of profilesmagazine.com

Flannel Shirts - What was once

the comfortable shirt-of-choice to lumberjacks and farmers of the North American continent has recently become popular among fashion-conscious peoples residing in metropolitan areas. Though initially loved by workers in cooler regions for their warmth and comfort, the early 90s grunge culture brought a renewed interest in the “comfort” style and revitalized America’s interest in only continued to increase; and soft plaid shirts are clothing many with a variety of color combinations. One word of advice: if you’re planning to wear a as some of the fabrics are apparently

Nerd Glasses - In the late 1900s necessities that no one seemed to love wearing; with the exception of Urkel. When the lightweight and frameless spectacles paraded onto the market people rushed to bump their old hefty frames. For years the “nerd glasses” were M.I.A., unseen, and uncool; that is until recently. With the revival of prep style, the help of shows such as “Ugly Betty”, the runways of designers including Yigal Azrouel and Marc media favorites such as Kanye West, geek shades have returned. They are not just back, they become a trend and never in history have they been so well received. Urkel’s back, and this time he’s cool. ---Mari Kroin ISSUE 1 2010

Courtesy of www.polyvore.com

Superhero Cartoons - If you stay

Courtesy of gogglesandglasses.com

Courtesy of chromemusic.de

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Courtesy of profilesmagazine.com

up late enough and you’re watching channels like the Nicktoons Network or Disney XD, you’ll see that they air a block of superhero cartoons from about 11 P.M. to 5 A.M. If you just read that, you’ll see that I’m a dork. “A paralyzer ray! I can’t move!” I swear that I just heard a Spiderman from another dimension shout that out and that’s exactly how I feel when the superhero blocks come on. Superheroes were never out, but I assume that this is some torrential homage to classic superheroes because of shows like “Batman: The Brave and The Bold” and The “Superhero Squad Show” which stay true to the campy and straightforward nature of Superhero cartoons. Crafty comebacks, LaGuardians! ---Louis Peralte 9 ISSUE 1 2010


MOVIES

The End of The World...In 3-D? LaG Mag is searching for journalists, music and art connoisseurs, foodies, movie geeks, photographers, artists, musicians, and graphic designers. In other words, we need YOU.

Wednesdays during and after 10th period in Room 559.

By Rachel Berger

With the help of computer generated imagery and 3-D technology, the end of the world has never seemed more real. Last "WALL-E" presented moviegoers with the image of an earth abandoned and covered with trash. The movie "9" opens on a similarly wasted landscape: the result of an apocalyptic war between humans and the deadly machines

they created. You don't have to be an art major to appreciate the loving detail "9"'s animators afforded each piece of rubble. The wasteland is made even more visually interesting from the vantage point of a hero less than a foot tall. Our main characters are the nine stitch-punk creations of a dying scientist. They're not exactly human, but compared to the murderous spider-like

Graphic Designers for Layout Editing Interested in doing layout for the magazine? Email lagartmag@gmail.com Basic knowledge of graphic design required. Perks: Qualified designers will receive Adobe Creative Suite 3 and will have a lesson on how to use Adobe Indesign for layout editing.

GET SOME HYPE

LaG Mag is featuring ARTISTS and BANDS/SINGERS based on the best submissions we receive. ARTISTS: Send 8 of your best pieces in JPEG form to lagartmag@gmail.com Include your name, email address, and phone number.

BANDS/SINGERS: Send a link of your Myspace music page to lagartmag@gmail.com Include your name, email address, and phone number. courtesy of blastmagazine.com picture courtesy of blastmagazine.com

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robots hunting them, their clockwork-and-burlap facades are positively endearing. Under the leadership of 9, the last of their number, the ragged homunculi seek to protect what's left of the world from a monster known as "The Great Machine". "9" was co-produced by Tim Burton and adapted from an award-nominated Shane Acker. But if you're looking for a fresh or unconventional story, you will be sorely disappointed. "9" is one of many recent movies with innovative visuals supporting a rather basic plot. It's unabashedly the old good-and-evil struggle, with "evil" being a murderous machine created from human intellect and subverted by human greed, and "good" being a tribe of quirky sack puppets endowed with a human soul. In the end, youth overcomes age, heart triumphs over intellect, and we are left with a perfect family of 9, our protagonist, 7, she-warrior and obligatory love interest, and the childlike twins 3 and 4. I love a good fantasy epic as much as anyone, but despite the leading voice performance by Elijah Wood, "9" is not "Lord of the Rings". The archetypical plot was frustrating. I wondered why, out of the nine sentient beings left on earth, only one was female. And when 7 comforted 9 with the knowledge that their (continued on page 19)

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mud truck image (left) courtesy of themudtruck.com

STREET

FOOD Mud Truck Craze

It is the nature of all businesses stationed in the East Village to stand out. The Mud Truck is no exception to this bold atmosphere. The truck itself is a statement with its carrot orange exterior and blasting hippie indie music. The workers, usually laid back free spirits in their 20s, are clear supporters of the arts; rocking out to local bands such as Balboa and the older sounds of the Beatles. They’ve also got a great selection of unique shirts, mugs, and pre-packed coffee beans on sale to the public in their trucks and on their website www. themudtruck.com. As for their specialty, coffee, the truck has something for everyone, even the pickiest of people. The drinks range from espresso to chai lattes and are made to order to The trucks are mainly located in Astor Place and Sheridan Square but don’t be surprised if you see them roaming around the city. It is a fantastic, fresh idea for people wishing to break free from the commercial stationary coffee shops infesting the city. ---Mari Kroin

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Tacos El Vagabundo

taco truck pictures are courtesy of shaunaeatssunnyside. tumbler.com

Think back to your younger years, a time when you would chase down the ice cream man with cash in hand. The joy you got from his portable frozen treats was obviously memorable enough for you to remember it. Now, imagine the same exact situation, but with tacos! In Sunnyside, Queens, there's a silvery truck with large letters that spell out "TACOS." It's called "Tacos El Vagabundo", which means "Tacos, the vagabond" probably because it store nomadic Mexican delicacies. The truck is emblazoned with a little Mexican girl wearing a puffy red, white and green dress drawn in a style similar to Disney's "It's a Small World." So, the truck is fun to look at, but is the food any good? Tacos El Vagabundo is highly popular in the area because the food is great! The food itself is light with lots of cilantro, but the servings are very generous and are always accompanied by wedges of lime and radishes. Your options are limitless as the workers are willing to compound your order any way that

you may want it and the prices are pretty typical at $2.50 a taco. Find the taco truck in Sunnyside, Queens between Queens Blvd. and 41st St. ---Louis Peralte

Wafels & Dinges Truck the perfect dessert or any random passerby who happens to be hungry- the Wafels & Dinges truck is the convenient way to feed a

picture (above) courtesy of midtownlunch.com picture (below) courtesy of tanakareport.com

New York’s best Belgian & Dinges truck is a mobile vehicle that cooks fresh ferent spot in the city depending on the time and day of the week. Boasting two different types of BelLiege) at $5 a pop and a variety of different toppings- including the truck’s signature straight-from-Belgium “spekaloos spread”, which tastes something like cookies in a spreadable cream, the truck provides an easy means of creatAlthough the size of the a lower price, the masterfully made batter cooks into a warm, soft, and slightly crispy meal that lives up to and surpasses all expectations. The truck’s parking schedule and menu can be found on the Wafels & Dinges website: www.wafelsanddinges.com. ---Ariana King

The Halal Guys at 53rd and 6th can always rely on the Halal Guys. Open from 7:30PMachs a night. They are so busy that they have four carts open at the same time---- one on the southeast corner, one used primarily as a drive-in for hungry cab drivers, one on 53rd and 7th avenue, and one solely for drinks. Usually, there is an incredibly long line on the southwest corner but don’t be afraid to eat from their other carts. This line is long for mostly sentimental reasons--- it is the original location. At $6 a platter, you get a very large portion of chicken, lamb, or combo with rice, lettuce, and pita bread. How do the Halal Guys stand out from a sea of halal vendors? It’s their incredibly spicy and delicious hot sauce. A lick of the dark, thick, red hot sauce will send warmth throughout your entire body. For this reason, the inferno. Is it worth the hype? Absolutely. ---Jaime Sunwoo ISSUE 1 2010

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Where I Live: By Lucia Gioiello My neighborhood has been all over local newspapers, but not really for the greatest reasons. A few years ago, it was labeled the largest real estate sale in history, and was sold to Tishman Speyer. This made the apartment prices skyrocket and college students

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Photography by Lucia Gioiello

the war between rentstabilized residents (such as myself and my family), and the new owners. Recently, Tishman Speyer has been affected by the great recession as well. They currently cannot pay for the mortgage and have gone under. As a person who has lived in Stuyvesant Town for more than 13 years, I grow worried about the future. Probably half of the people living in my neighborhood have rent stabilization in their apartments, and have lived in these apartments sometimes

for more than 20 years. Stuyvesant Town was created originally as low price apartments for veterans of World War II; it is still very family-friendly with various parks scattered throughout the town, a nice fountain, and many grassy areas and trees, as well as some squirrels scurrying around. There are often random events that take place during holidays, as well as seasonal things such as farmers markets. Along with the rest of Manhattan, however, I have noticed that Stuyvesant Town is getting Already built to be symmetric, all buildings are made of brown stone and are approximately are now facilities called “amenities,” which are offered to members only (aka residents who are willing to pay a substantial amount every month). The once communityschool neighborhood, is now somewhat an area of privilege. There are a few good things about my

neighborhood though. The parks can be really fun, and ping-pong tournaments are hosted during the summer. The green nature-y environment makes you feel fresh and happy in the morning, and there are chess tables scattered around to either sit on or play chess. The fountain refreshes you in the hot summer weather when the breeze sprinkles you with mist. It is also located conveniently in the Lower East Side, nearby the M14, M9, L Train, and is close to fun places like the East Village, St Mark’s Place, and Union Square. Neighbors are also pretty friendly and we have a laundry room in the lobby, which is good for all us lazy people who rarely do our laundry let alone go outside to do chores. Generally speaking, I would recommend a nice middle class/ well off family to move here because there is a day care center for children and also a lot of playgrounds. The area is pretty safe and quiet and has recently become dog friendly! Not to mention all the numerous cool LaG kids live there. 15 ISSUE 1 2010


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ONE TIME… One time... a plastic bag lunged at me on the train! It was just this Valentine’s Day and I was on the 7 Train from Flushing to Times Square for a rendezvous with my special lady at the Wolman rink in Central Park. (What we ended up doing was sitting around in a Border’s bookstore cramming various incarnations of chocolate down our gullets, but back to my exciting trip.) I had a rose and chocolates in hand and had situated myself in the orange seats, customary to the 7 train. Next to me were two young and giddy women who couldn’t seem to stop laughing, and across from them were their suitors, thin and wimpy looking. Not a single one of them seemed to be in the mood for romance. I just sat there with my rose staring off into space trying not to concentrate on the people that were diverting their gaze from my rose to me and then back to my rose. A few more minutes into the ride, a pretty sketchy looking guy with salt and pepper hair

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By Louis Peralte

and bright orange plastic bags from an Asian supermarket seated himself directly across from me. His presence was unnerving because he had this habit of staring through people, he was looking in their direction, but not at them. Everyone was just sitting there, some of them talking, some of them pretending to listen and some of them just trying

jumping accompanied by the sound of rustling plastic bags all melded together to form a glorious cacophony! Disgusting. Unfortunately, it wasn’t unthe pandemonium that I noticed one of salt and pepper man’s bags jumping at me. It was thrashing about, determined to reach me, maybe even

attack me, but it stopped as soon as salt and pepper man turned the bag around. I was the only one who didn’t freak out, therefore, the only one who maintained their dignity. The moral of the story actually comes down to “You’ve got to keep your cool if you want to be cool.” In other words, keep calm so you don’t ruin things for yourself and everyone around you before you’ve even had a chance to assess the situation. But what was in the the market making its last struggle to live. Sad, but not a reason to obstruct the peace.

Savvy up!

CONTINUATIONS The End of the World... In 3D? lost friend's souls had ascended to a better place -- "They're free now" -- I couldn't suppress a groan. tar" and "WALL-E", "9" makes use of the newest technology while simultaneously warning of its dangers. In a time of frustration with greedy CEOs and draining, pointless wars, "9" depicts evil in the form of soulless machinery and a corrupt, militaristic human Chancellor (an apparent reference to Adolf Hitler). These days the world's demise seems imminent, whether through global warming or the coming of the year 2012.

LGM: Who

inspires

you?

BL: My uncle has always had an impact on my art career. He was the one that set me up at the starting line. He is an architect, so in many ways I look up to him. I am also the people around me, the pop culture, our school, my friends, the track team, my girlfriend, and just the city itself. It’s New York City we are talking about here. Things do get ugly fast here, but it’s the greatest city of the world.

comfort in familiar plot lines and thinly veiled religious symbolism. It's no wonder the image of a ghost earth keeps popping up on screen. What we're still waiting for is a way forward -- a movie whose content and message are as wellrealized as its imagery.

Artist Feature: Benny Lam ART! YEAH JUST DO ART! Remember to be yourself in your art. Don’t try to be pretentious. “They” can always tell. Also don’t be afraid to start preparing for college early. Even starting in freshman year is not that crazy. Okay maybe just a little, but during your sophomore year you should start thinking about the basic college stuff… trust me life will be SO MUCH easier if you start thinking about it early! ISSUE 1 2010

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LaGMag Vol.3, Issue 1: The Comeback Issue