Page 1

gryffindor recruits Students bring wizarding sport to campus, complete with brooms and Bludgers.




Volume XLIX, Issue 4 + December 15, 2010 + Thousand Oaks High School + 2323 N. Moorpark Rd. + Thousand Oaks, CA 91360 +

Dance salutes The Big Apple Paige Curson Contributing Writer

Dancers leapt into the fast-paced rhythm of “A Day in New York City” in this year’s winter dance concert Dec. 2-4 in the PAC. Dancers from intermediate classes, advanced classes and dance team showed off the moves that they had perfected in the past two months. The sold-out show was set in the heart of New York City. “[It] highlights a lot of the main destination and events,” dance team member freshman Erin Callahan said. True to the theme, the show took audience members to the New York City Ballet, Central Park and Grand Central Station. This year’s focus on New York created a variety of different reactions among the dancers. “[The show] was a lot more focused on music and a lot of current cultures,” dance team member junior

Nikki Palmer said. The dances showed certain aspects and experiences associated with New York . “It was a theme you could do a lot of different dances to,” advanced class member junior Taylor Jones said. Each year the dance concert centers around a different theme; last year’s was “Artistry in Motion.” “You couldn’t compare them,” dance teacher JaLeen Murphy said. Murphy also said that next year, dancers are going to try to learn some of the choreography sooner, since she felt that some of the dances were not as polished as they could have been. Among the different performances was a 9/11 tribute performed by seniors. “It made you think about the loss of people close to you,” Palmer said. Dancers sought to express passion and heartbreak by portraying the amount of loss 9/11 caused the nation.

“We wanted the kids to attach to the tragedy that happened to our country,” Murphy said. She specifically chose seniors for the dance because she felt that they were more capable of putting in the emotion that was vital to the message of the performance The production did not only include dance. Comedic duo sophomores Michael Seltzer and Alex Karukas also accompanied the show. “They added humor to the production and really brought out the theme,” audience member junior Janine Sobers said. The show, which featured several student-choreographed numbers, proved to be a hit amongst family and students. “This year they had more student [involvement],” audience member senior Jessyca Tabor said. “I thought it was really cool that they gave students the freedom to express themselves and show them their best work.”

Alex Masuoka » the lancer

ILLUMINATION—From left, senior Taryn Thompson, junior Sari Terrazas, sophomore Nycolle Quezada, senior Rachel Handelsman and senior Emily Hops perform the “Tribute to Balanchine” dance to Tchaikovsky’s “Serenade in C Major,” taking audience members to the New York City Ballet. “I was incredibly nervous because this was my first year in [winter concert], but I’m glad I could be part of it,” Quezada said. “Many hours and bruises were put into the show, but they were all worth it.”

Jazz celebrates the holiday spirit




News Editor

brass—Junior Daniel Luo plays the tenor saxophone at the winter jazz concert Dec. 9 in the PAC. The concert also featured the Los Cerritos Middle School Jazz Band.

Rafael Ancheta » the lancer

Performing selections from songs such as “All or Nothing at All” by Frank Sinatra and “Christmas Time is Here” arranged by David Pugh, TOHS’s AM Jazz Ensemble performed a free winter-themed concert Dec. 9 in the PAC. The 20-member band participated in the winter concert together with the Los Cerritos Middle School Jazz Band. //cont. on page 2 » Jazz


rafael ancheta

8-9, 12-13





-photo essay20

page 2 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010



Technology counters increased copy use Alex Chen

annual copy quota

News Editor


nglish teacher Teri Sanders pays for her own copies. Every copy her students see comes out of her pocket and hers alone, not the school’s. “Other teachers need the copies in order to meet their curriculum goals,” Sanders said. “Additionally, it is my hope that funds saved by keeping my copying cost low can directly provide more opportunities for our students.” As a school, however, TOHS is moving in the opposite direction. In September and October alone, the school made around 445,000 copies, more than double the number in the same time period last year. Because nearly a third of the 1.5 million paid copies last year were unused, the annual budget was reduced to only over 1 million copies this year. “We didn’t want to pay for more copies that we wouldn’t be using,” Principal Lou Lichtl said. Even if future copying stays to the projected 100,000 monthly copies, overuse will already cost more than $2,000, a sum that will be drawn from department budgets, according to library clerk Connie Peters. “Somehow the books will balance this year, but it’ll come out of department budgets next year,” Peters said. “The only way to take that money away is from next year.”

copy consumption september november

-Principal Lou Lichtl

Moving away from print »


-library clerk Connie Peters

The origins of this year’s overuse are still unclear, as several possible factors changed from previous years. Many point to a number of new classes and levels. Sue Ann Bryant, a biology teacher last year, now teaches economics. “Because this is a subject that I haven’t taught at this school, I have to do all the setup materials,” Bryant said. New classes demand new class sets of materials, including assessments, activities and handouts. “There’s a tremendous startup,” Bryant said. Usage estimates based on copy consumption in 2009 may not fit actual usage because of less accountability. “One of the concerns [is] the way the copier is set up,” biology teacher Ashley Cooper said. “There is no counter function. I have no idea [how many copies I’ve made].” Department heads became accountable for copy statistics after the faculty clerk position was removed. In contrast, on previous leases, individual teachers could keep track of their own copies on a physical counter. “It is possible for us to keep track,” Peters said, “[but] there’s no way [for teachers] to look in the computer and see how many copies they’ve made.” Also among adjustments was the removal of a copy limit for each teacher. “This year, Mr. Lichtl told us that [the limit] was unreasonable and for the time being that there was no limit on the number of copies we could make,” English teacher Jon Fleming said. The administration felt that the limit restricted both teachers and students. “If teachers feel like they need these copies in the classrooms,” Lichtl said, “we don’t want to get in the way of their instructional programs.” The copy budget this year was based on last year’s usage, which failed to make use of a third of paid copies. The number of unused copies, however, more likely reflected the use of the limit rather than actual demand. This year, without the limit, copier usage spiked. “[With a limit,] you know where to stop,” Peters said. “If you take that wall away, you can push as far as you want.” Without the limit, teachers no longer have to seek copies outside of what the school provides, a personal cost that many shouldered in previous years. “Between what I’d print at home and the printer in the classroom, [it cost] $25 a month, at least,” Fleming said. English and US Government and Politics teacher Brinden Wohlstattar estimated her personal copying expenses last year at about $32 a month, on average. “Last year I used [my personal printer] a tremendous amount,” she said. For some, however, no limit is not an incentive. “We still give up our own personal time to make copies,” Bryant said. “It doesn’t make one bit of difference for me because I try to be frugal about it.” Further, teachers are still generally aware of account-

If teachers feel like they need these copies in the classrooms, we don’t want to get in the way of their instructional programs.


It’d be nice if the fairy godmother of copying just appeared. Poof! You get it for free!

Supply and demand »

ability, even without the presence of restrictions. “You can relax a little when it comes to copying,” Fleming said, “but you’re still held responsible.”


The administration is seeking to stem overuse primarily with greater amounts of technology in the classroom. Lichtl estimates that it is possible for teachers to reduce copying to 70 to 80 percent of copies made last year with the help of technology. “[Technology is a] small drop in the bucket,” Lichtl said, “but in the long haul, is huge savings.” According to Lichtl, with enough technology and training, teachers will be able to reduce the use of print. With this and enhancing instruction in mind, the administration placed Promethean boards, projectors, document cameras and tablets in classrooms. “I’m rarely [visiting] a classroom where I don’t see the technology being used,” Lichtl said. Some have adopted technology readily. In the library, librarian Sarah Burns teaches literary criticism, lessons that used to consume impressive amounts of paper. “As a library, we were copying 12-page handouts for all the students,” Peters said. “Now we have it on PowerPoint or the Promethean [board].” For her, technology plays more than just a substitute role for print—students have to absorb information through their own notes, rather than printed handouts. “[With a handout], you don’t get the depth of information you might need,” Peters said. “A handout is just not as good.” Others contest the ability of technology to supplant print in the classroom. “I think [technology] has the power to reduce copies somewhat but not significantly,” Bryant said. “The PowerPoints and the document [cameras are] my information going out to them. I need stuff coming back to me for assessment.” For these people, paper will continue to play an integral role in education. “Anybody who thinks that in the next 5 years we’re going to be a paperless society has not looked in the classroom,” Bryant said. Others note that teachers may not be able to use the technology to the fullest, due to inadequate training and insufficient funding. “If the teachers are appropriately trained, our school will be more sustainable,” Cooper said. “But for the allotted time and staff budget, yes, TOHS and the administration are doing the best they can to implement an increased amount of technology in every classroom.” Because formal training may not always be fiscally possible, Lichtl hopes for teachers to train each other. “Once you get a critical mass of teachers, they start learning from their peers,” he said. “I think we’re seeing a lot of that.”

Anybody who thinks that in the next five years we’re going to be a paperless society has not looked in the classroom. -economics teacher Sue Ann Bryant Wait and see » 300,000



After leadership became aware of overuse, copier usage in November did drop significantly from the high levels of the first two months—a drop of about 11,000, according to Peters. Nevertheless, November’s copy count was still higher than that of last year. Implementation of limits remains a possibility, after evaluation in March. “We can still implement the limits,” Peters said, “but I hope we don’t go that way.” Accepting the costs this year and accommodating more copies next year is also an option, so as to not restrict teachers. “I think we’ll resolve it over time,” Lichtl said. “It’s really a small amount of money.” Nevertheless, in an era of tight budgets, overspending on copying still remains an issue. “It’d be nice if the fairy godmother of copying just appeared,” Peters said. “Poof! You get it for free!”

Alex chen » The Lancer

looking forward—Math teacher Jayna Lovo has taught at TOHS for seven years. She will be leaving for the district office at the start of the second semester.

Lovo leaves for district Jen Smith Staff Writer

Staff and students will say goodbye to a veteran math teacher next semester. Math teacher Jayna Lovo will leave to accept the position of data coach at the CVUSD office. This will mean leaving her full-time teaching post, a move she has mixed feelings about making. “I was assisted in getting the job by a WASC recommendation. I oversee the 26 schools in CVUSD,” Lovo said. The mathematics department is also sad to see her off. Next door to Lovo, math teacher Patti McNamara says she will miss talking with her fellow instructor. “It’s great to have someone heading that [district] department, but for the students, it’s a loss,” McNamara said. A California native, Lovo grew up in Ventura County and has been teaching at TOHS for seven years, her first teaching job. She will depart for her new job after the semester ends, leaving an empty position. “We’re going to miss her,” geometry teacher James Park said. “[Lovo] is very capable and will be beneficial as data coach.” Not only staff members will regret seeing Lovo leave. Many of her students, former and current, remember the times that they had in her classes. Senior Scott Hendrickson recalls Lovo’s unique teaching methods. “We watched the TV show Numb3rs during class,” he said. “She was awesome.” Despite receiving new opportunities, Lovo hates to leave her students and her longtime position. “I’m excited, but sad,” she said. “I’ll miss my students.”

Jazz band celebrates holiday cheer in winter concert //cont. from page 1 » Jazz

“From an organizing and performance perspective it was one of our best concerts in years,” band director Marty Martone said. Improvised solos and outgoing new members added to the concert’s overall energy and musical achievement. Martone attributes much of the concert’s success to the band’s unique group dynamics and underlying friendships. “The camaraderie of the team is so positive that it creates an atmosphere to perform and get better,” Martone said. “It makes learning and growing as performers easier.” Intimacy between the members of the band keeps room for growth and encourages members to help one another improve. “Individual musicianship is more equal on an advanced level,” Martone said. With such a strong foundation for success, Martone maintains an air of optimism for the band and hopes for continued improvement among all members. “The junior class of this year has fantastic musicians and they will only get better next year,” junior Tory Klein said. The performance was not without its fallbacks, however, although band members characterized points of improvement as minor. “I think we can do a lot better as a rhythm section, personally,” Klein said, “and we have room for improvement on balance and blend.” The band will continue to focus on improving upon past performances. As Martone puts it, “How good can we really be?”



issue 4 december 15, 2010

} page 3

Program helps students catch up on credits Joyce Tan

Contributing Writer

Rebecca Sylvers » The Lancer

NUTS AND BOLTS—Senior Jake Babich prepares his robot, Helldozer, on Dec. 10, a day before the National Robotics League competition at CSU Northridge. Helldozer advanced to semifinals in the competition.

Robotics finishes in semifinals Jacob Markus Copy Editor

It was the quarterfinals of the National Robotics League competition, as senior Jake Babich tinkered with the controls of the loyal robot in front of him. He, along with the other students of the Robotics Club, traveled to CSU Northridge to explore the intricacies of robotic engineering and programming on Dec. 11, competing with two robots. In one of the closest matches at the competition, one Thousand Oaks team pulled ahead of other competitors and went on to finish as a semifinalist. “We were determined, and though it was stressful at times, we performed really well,” Babich said. The Robotics Club prepared for this event months in advance. Every day at lunch and often after school, they would meet in adviser physics teacher Doris MacDonald’s room or the metal shop. Each year’s competition has different activities that the robots’ designs must address. In the most recent event, participants had to create robots that could pick up plastic donut-like structures and drop them neatly on a spindle. Matches were organized into three rounds, with two

teams competing per round. Though deceptively simple, participants noted the complex strategy involved. Robots could be programmed to place the donuts on spindles to score points or alternatively to remove the donuts from competitors’ spindles to take points away from them. For extra points, the robots could climb a ladder near the end of the round. There was also a two-minute time constraint on individual rounds. On top of time not being on competitors’ side, the music and cheering of the audience posed added to the tension. “The atmosphere makes it exciting. People are depending on you and that makes it more thrilling,” Babich said. The environment is as electrifying as the motors that run the robots themselves, though those tend to stagnate from time to time, causing more anxiety for the teams. The Robotics Club will be cooperating with Newbury Park and La Reina in the future to participate in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) in 2011. When faced with the challenges that lay ahead, Babich is modest. “It’s not really that complicated,” Babich said, “just big metal Lego pieces.”

Toy drive changes hands

TOHS is hosting the annual ASB second-period toy drive on Dec. 9–16 under the Ventura County Fire Department instead of the Marines’ Toys for Tots service. “There were some miscommunications we had with the Marines, [such as] their inability to both deliver the boxes and pick up the actual toys,” ASB secretary senior Lindsay Baffo said. “ASB decided that as long as the toys were going to children in need the labels themselves don’t seem to matter to much.” The fire department will pick up the toys in front of the office Dec. 16 at lunchtime. Students are welcome to watch the transfer. -Rafael Ancheta

Marine biology to visit aquarium despite break-in

Marine biology teacher Steve Nardi’s class will still visit the Aquarium of the Pacific on Dec. 15 in spite of a break-in over Thanksgiving break. According to the administration, the crime was committed for the aquarium trip funds, which Nardi stored in a safe outside the classroom. No money was stolen, although the intruder broke a window and television. “Our investigation did lead to a perpetrator,” Principal Lou Lichtl said, “and that situation has been dealt with.” -Alex Chen

Newspaper wins awards

The Advanced Journalism class attended the NSPA/ JEA High School Journalism Convention in Kansas City, MO on Nov.11–14. Seven students won write-off awards at the convention and the newspaper itself won 1st place of Best in Show in the 16-20 page category. -Rafael Ancheta

Astronaut to visit

The School-to-Career Office will feature astronaut Marsha Ivins on Dec. 16 in the PAC. She will speak about her career and answer questions. Ivins has flown in space five times and is currently a NASA employee. -Alex Chen

Every day during first period in the computer lab, students have the opportunity to move closer to graduation by attending an online school. This program, called Cyber High, is a credit recovery program started in 2009 that enables students to make up credits through independently paced online courses. Its curriculum provides all state-accredited classes except some, such as science classes that involve hands-on labs. “The program offers students who need to make up work a chance to graduate,” English teacher and Cyber High instructor Robin Bromberg said. Senior Alyxx Small has already completed two courses this year and has one course remaining until she is caught up with her credits. This is Small’s first year in Cyber High. “Without this program, I would have a lot of classes to make up,” Small said. “It’s a quiet environment so it’s a lot easier to get your work done. And it goes a lot faster than normal classes. Not recommended for those who have short attention spans though.” Like Small, this is junior Justin Harbison’s first year in the program. “It lets me bring my credits back up so I can graduate,” Harbison said. “It goes a lot faster, and overall, it’s pretty easy.” Like regular classes, there are quizzes, tests, videos, essays, novels and textbooks that correspond to courses. “The difficulty really varies by student and course. Some students can get through a course in six weeks and some longer,” Bromberg said. As teacher and mentor of Cyber High, Bromberg is responsible for the many tasks involving students and the online curriculum. “I enroll students in their classes, help them with their assignments and monitor their essays, quizzes and tests.” Bromberg said. “Students are taking different courses so my work with them is one-on-one.” With her help, students have made up for lost time, successfully obtaining credits and closing in on graduation. “I am fortunate to have wonderful students who are motivated to learn,” Bromberg said. “It’s a great joy to assist in their progress and to share in their success.”

2nd Annual Sustainability Summit PAC Friday, January 7 The Sustainability Summit, planned by Geosciences CP teacher Heather Farrell and Biology CP teacher Ashley Cooper, will feature local speakers on environmental sustainability. Karl Bruskotter City of Santa Monica

“Buying green & toxic chemicals” Rick Freed CVUSD Energy Manager

“The case for conservation and what schools are doing to help” John Brooks City of Thousand Oaks Dept. of Public Works

“Sustainability practices, green business certification and green jobs in our area” Jordan Howard Surfrider Foundation

“Rise above plastics” Lauma Jurkevics CA Dept. of Water Resources

“Climate change at Water Resources” Mary Maranville CREEC Network

Environmental education programs” Ron Manwill City of Thousand Oaks

“Creek impairments in Thousand Oaks”

Night custodian leaves after 39 years of service Rafael Ancheta News Editor

Since 1971, Larry Gray has worked at TOHS unwaveringly. Throughout his 39 years as a night custodian, he has seen the school develop from its once small beginnings to the larger facility it is today. After this lengthy term, he recently retired to enjoy his own free time. Born in Ventura, Gray attended school both in Ventura and Oxnard schools before joining the United States Army. “I loved [the Army],” Gray said. “I liked the idea of traveling, I got to see a lot of places I wouldn’t see if I wasn’t in the military.” Gray served as a diesel mechanic in the Army, repairing and maintaining cars, tanks and other equipment while visiting such places as Germany, Belgium and Korea. He found his way to Thousand Oaks during a shortterm occupation opportunity program at Oxnard High School. During the program he was transferred to Thousand Oaks because it was still part of the Ventura School District at the time. “I was supposed to stay for 30 days,” Gray said. “I ended up staying 39 years.” Gray liked the job security and steady pay, because he now had a family to support, so he decided to stay in Thousand Oaks as well as pursue a degree in Police Science at Ventura College. Custodian Allen Brnham stayed on at the school after Gray left, and also has 39 years on record. Throughout his time here, Brnham got to know Gray as a friend and coworker. “He was a hard worker and our lead night man,” said Brnham. “He was hard, but he was fair.” At the same time; Brnham described Gray as a man who spread an air of joy around him. “He joked a lot,” Brnham said. “He keeps you laughing.” Gray respected the school while working here and took pleasure in getting to know the staff. “I would like to thank the staff who served by me. I enjoyed working by them and working with the school

Alex masuoka » The Lancer

HAPPY RETIREMENT—Larry Gray celebrates his retirement after 39 years of employment with TOHS staff. as a whole,” Gray said. Now retired, Gray plans to work on his personal project of restoring old cars, notably a ‘52 Chevy Deluxe, a Dodge Charger and a Chevy pickup. He also plans to visit his children in Atlanta, Georgia; Baltimore, Maryland; and Washington D.C. later in the spring. But as for the school, Gray will always keep it in his memory. “I liked to say I really liked my time there, I really enjoyed myself with the teachers and all,” Gray said. “It was a great experience.”

page 4 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010





Extra credit, controversy “It’s all right; I’ll raise my grade with some extra credit.” That statement, no matter how commonplace it may be now, might be disappearing from the mouths of students in the near future. The leadership committee, made up of the department chairs of each subject and the administration, have instated a new rule that discourages teachers from giving out extra credit that is unrelated to the class itself. By doing so, they have done away with something that students have relied on throughout their school careers for some extra help with their grades. This rule will severely limit the amount of opportunities that students will have to improve their grade with extra credit. For example, the staple method of acquiring extra credit, bringing in tissue boxes, will vanish, as it goes against the new rules. However, assignments such as current events in English, history

and science classes will still allow students to earn extra points. Extra credit assignments allow students another opportunity to learn the material, which will give them more benefits than just the extra points. Where the rule runs into problems is in the issue of charity drives. While it may be pleasant to think that students will give out of the goodness of their hearts, the truth is that because extra credit is often offered adds more motivation than simply the joy of giving. It’s hard to guess how the absence of this added motivation will affect the outcome of the charity drives, but it’s probably safe to say that it won’t have a positive effect. By allowing students to donate goods for extra credit, the committee argues, teachers are allowing students to simply purchase their grades. It is unfair, they say, that students who work hard but might not necessarily have the

money to spend on toys and food items can get the same grades as their peers, who might have ignored their homework, but brought in a turkey for the food drive. While this is a valid point, it must be said that often the extra credit received is minimal, and only truly affects those on the fence between grades. It’s admirable that this new rule attempts to level the playing field for all students. However, the methods through which it tries to accomplish its goals are admittedly flawed, as it ends up unwillingly hurting some of those it tries to help.

Hits and Misses:

What’s Up and What’s Down with The Lancer Hit: Beatles on iTunes. It’s been a Long and Winding Road, but they are now finally Here, There, and Everywhere.

Miss: Stanford. What more do you want from us?

Hit: Obama on Mythbusters.

Obama is the most culturally adept president ever: Confirmed.

Miss: Teddy Roosevelt, his ego

ideal, spent his time trust-busting. Obama spends his time...Mythbusting.

Hit: Thor. Then Ironman 3. Then

Hulk 2. Then Captain America. Then all of them in one.

editorial board


Miss: Miley Cyrus’ soon to be infa-

10 for 3 against 2 abstain

Hit: Winter break. Fun-wise, Thanks-

mous bong hit. It wasn’t illegal, but for Hannah Montana, it might as well have been.

giving was merely an appetizer.

Palin program is transparent Daniel Schechter Guest Writer

A new reality television show, Sarah Palin’s Alaska, (also known as The Longest, Most Involved and Expensive Political Campaign Ad Ever), premiered Nov. 14 on TLC. Previews show picturesque scenes of life inside and out of the Palin home, including a shot of 16-year-old daughter Willow sneaking a boy up to her bedroom Everybody knew Palin, along with many on the far right, run on false morals, but this, or the idea of this, at least, casts a direct glare on a truth already so harsh and ugly. Obviously the are aware of what is going on in their own home, as they are in constant communication with the ever-present camera people, and they have some sort of say over what goes into the show—aka an admittedly very loosely scripted story arc, but one that still revolves around planned events. So this means that Sarah, or the writing team she controls, talked to Willow, asked her to talk to her assumed 16-year-old boyfriend, who she then convinced to appear on nationally-broadcast television in a scene masquerading as wink-wink “harmless relatable teenage misdoings” so that Palin would have an opportunity to, at some point in the episode, espouse her deeply felt moral convictions. But not in a holier-than-thou manner— no, nothing that could even possibly sniff of elitism— for she is just like you, right? This incident is just a microcosm of the show and how it is integral to her campaign for presidency. It is

New nook success for sports bags

something calculated with the purpose of appearing entirely uncalculated, spontaneous— something cold and inhuman pretending to have the heart of a maverick. In a way, reality TV and Sarah Palin are a match made in heaven (or hell). They attempt to connect and relate with the average person, but not in any genuine way. They are both created by rich white people interested in making and keeping their money. They claim, out rightly or implicitly, to be “for the people, by the people”, but really, they’re “for the people, whether they want it or not.” So it is fitting that the most substance-less candidate (saying a lot) would use the most substance-less entertainment form (also saying a lot) to promote her substance-less political campaign. When asked why she decided to create the show, Palin responded that it was “an opportunity to showcase the natural beauty of Alaska and its hard-working people.” Her statement as self-serving as her new show (and as lacking in truth), Palin has never actually denied any presidential rumors. In fact, when asked directly, she dodged-without really-dodging, answering that she would if it was “the right thing to do for our country and for the Palin family.” She’s attempting to reach the younger voting block as well. Recently, there have been rumors that Sarah was the strongly suggestive force behind Bristol’s joining of the Dancing with the Stars cast. This, combined with her Sarah Palin’s Alaska, are two facets of an extended, expensive image ad, promoting her personal aspects to the intended neglect of her political shortcomings. Because she is a family woman. And she is a pioneer-ess, and the snow-bound, down-to-earth maverick that will save the Real America. She’s not about to let you forget it between now and November 2012.

Lucas Gigena Guest Writer

Walking onto campus in the morning darkness, I was used to passing a sea of sports bags in all colors. In the morning, students gathered around to toss their bags in, a practice which became a kind of sport itself. And in the afternoon, with the school day over and our energy fading, we waded through the sea to grab our things, stepping on bags and feet alike and issuing half-hearted apologies the whole way.

Hello! And welcome to the 2012 Republican National Convention!

Before we begin, I’d like to show you all...

“Thumbs Up!” - Republican Party 2012



Rock on

A sneak preview of the new episode of my hit show!

Graham Evirs » with permission

Now we simply place our things on neat shelves, although getting to them still requires pushing through a crowd. This new organization has made things much easier for many students, myself included, who prefer not to have to get in touch with their inner treasure hunter to be able to go to practice. As every positive must have its negative, however, it has also made it more convenient for those who are looking for a good five-finger discount on some sports equipment. The issue of someone stealing my sports bag has never really bothered me; there’s no real profit in the used shorts and broken running shoe industry, anyway. But, I can understand the worries of those with more expensive equipment, although I’m sure it would be quite difficult to hide a stolen lacrosse stick for an en-

tire day. This loss may be insignificant, the theft of one’s sports bag can represent a greater idea: a breach of trust. This may just be over-analyzing, but the fact that the bags are left outside, rather than inside of a locked room, shows a measure of trust that students feel towards one another; this trust is broken when someone’s things are stolen. Regardless, this new storage area is a good addition to the school, as its benefits greatly outweigh its unintentional faults. So far it seems to have been a success, as it has been adopted as quickly as it was implemented. It is unfortunate, however, that a change that was only meant to be helpful to students has been brought into question by the actions of those whose intentions are less than pure.

{ } page 5 Ed/Op in The only man in music Latency Koreas implodes issue 4 december 15, 2010

Daniel schechter Opinion Editor

Arrogant. Brash. Cocky. Cocky, from cock. As in rooster— the inherently male fowl that needs to be heard. The animal that is famous for waking everybody up in the morning. There is one man left in music, the one who’s woken everybody up time and again. His name is Kanye West. He is unafraid and self-assured. He refuses to follow in others’ footsteps, while still respecting hallowed traditions. He wears his lion’s heart on his sleeve, and the lack of posing is a grand relief. In a Caucasian sphere dominated by boys and girls who whine about how they feel, there is a man who really feels strongly, passionately. In an urban world where knowledge isn’t always necessarily power, he promotes his talent and his intellect rather than his bling and/or weaponry. He’s conscious of all this, and he’s never been hesitant to say anything about it. He’s been waking people up long since his new album, My Dark Twisted Fantasy (Reviewed in Entertainment, pg. 15) was released. He started out producing big-name greats like Jay-Z, and he changed the game from behind the scenes, with his signature use of sped-up soul samples over grittily programmed drums. From there he tried to make the oft-attempted (and oft-

failed) transition from producer to emcee. The record companies didn’t like him- too much style… and too much substance as well. They didn’t feel like his lack of “street-cred” would appeal to the masses. But they didn’t know a revolution was afoot. He persevered, and he convinced Rock-A-Fella of his worth. Kanye’s witty lyricism and unique production style on his debut, The College Dropout, won him rap album of the year- over other nominee, and former mentor, Jay-Z’s Black Album (some of which Kanye also produced). What makes Kanye the man in music, however, is that his incredible talent is accented with not-so-ridiculous selfbelief, and his disregard for social etiquette. In the same year College Dropout won best rap album, he lost best new artist to Gretchen Wilson. He maintained that he, in fact, was the best new artist…and he was right. About 10 years later, many are asking themselves- “Gretchen who?” A year later, after Late Registration was released (a followup in a similar, if perhaps more sophisticated vein of College Dropout) Hurricane Katrina hit. Little to nothing about it was done by the government about it. West recognized this- while other celebrities were reading off a teleprompter, urging people to donate their small change, Kanye decided to utter the now famous phrase- “George Bush does not care about black people”. It didn’t take the nation 10 years to realize this one was true. //cont. on page 6 » Kanye West

Wiki wreaks havoc Brian Whalen Guest Writer

Is Wikileaks a threat to national security? Is it truly holding the government responsible? Should anyone care? Such questions grip the pseudo intellectuals of America who actually think that international relations are relevant to their lives. After scouring articles on Wikipedia, however, I arrived at a conclusion on which everyone that reads high school newspapers can agree— too much information can be a bad thing. For those unaware of the hubbub surrounding Wikileaks, I am including a short summary of said hubbub: Wikileaks was founded in 2006 by Julian Assange and various other internet superheroes to battle the tyranny of the United States government by illegally acquiring and “leaking” sensitive classified super-important government testimonies and documents. At first, no one cared, but in November 2010 Bradley Manning lifted some 3,000 documents off of a government archive and submitted it. They were published. Quickly thereafter, these documents revealed shocking new details about the prisoners in Guantanamo Bay (some were even beaten for information!), and about countries like Saudi Arabia being totally down with helping the US pulverize Iran. Since then, most of the people involved in the leak have either been imprisoned Abraham Lincoln style (Julian Assange is being held without bail) or exiled Napoleon Bonaparte style (many have fled to Sweden, England, or wherever estranged journalists go) for almost inciting a nuclear Holocaust. That’s the summary. Now for the answers: The only information that really changes the playing field for the Government are those secret diplomacy documents, and it seems borderline stupid to release those onto the internet, seeing as almost no one is opposed to the combined overthrowing of the Persian Theocracy, so the government is not exactly being held accountable as much as its being sabotaged by having a

nuclear power suddenly very ready to launch a preemptive nuclear strike. It is hard to accept the concept that Wikileaks is a chaotic good figure of accountability when they reveal so little about their own internal politics and hide their servers in a Bond Villain’s Swedish mountain cave (seriously, look it up). If we don’t have half a clue as to what they are really up to and what really motivates them, then we cannot know that they are revealing all there is to know about the government. But the real question is why anyone should really care. Regardless of the results of Assange’s trial, international politics are going to be massively affected by Iran’s paranoia. The face of Wikileaks is changing as well, due to split opinion regarding the possibly hypocritical secrecy of Wikileaks. A large portion of their staff is leaving to form Openleaks, a competing publishing firm, which features anonymous submission and theoretically transparent policy. If they aren’t shut down, Openleaks and Wikileaks may very well reveal all of the background dealings of the Government like they aim to. And, you should care because it’s still very, very unclear if this is at all a good thing. It could root out corruption and injustice to some extent, but it could also prevent realpolitiks that safeguard the lives of citizens or stop outside atrocities. It’s been about a month and WWIII hasn’t been let loose, but such an even could be dependent on one or two particularly volatile pieces of information. You should care because if a classified document is published and it mentions that Taiwan is actually an independent country, there’s a good chance you’ll spend the next summer breathing out your last in a radioactive wasteland unloved and unmourned rather than getting a part time job at the sizzler to make some extra green.

after recent attack from North JACOB markus Copy Editor

Tension, tension, tension and then... It snaps. It explodes. It erupts. Then it billows up toward the sky, released as smoke from an explosion. On Nov. 23, North Korea shelled the island of Yeonpyeong and catalyzed a firestorm of controversy. The alliances and hostilities of reacting nations have received immense news coverage, but are these reports exaggerated to fill headlines, or the truth? North and South Korea have had their fair share of tension in the past. The perpetual, silent war between the two nations has consistently approached the breaking point. The temporary peace drawn at the 38th parallel over half a century ago threatens the safety and security of both nations. In this most recent incident, a North Korean artillery strike was ordered on Yeonpyeong due to its contentious location near the 38th parallel. And only a few months ago, North Korea antagonized its southern neighbor by sinking the Cheonan, one of their navy ships. Though Russia was the first country to advocate North Korea’s innocence in the incident, its participation alongside them in a future war is questionable. The threat of a third world war makes good news, as does any that is encapsulated in deep-seated fear, but the facts themselves tell a different story. Russia has had intermittent support of North Korea in recent years; it has gone as far as condoning behavior and suggesting sanctions. Regardless of where Russia’s loyalty lies, many consider the lavish support of China to be enough to scream World War III, but let’s take a closer look at this. The main impetus for China’s original participation in the Korean War all those years ago was to defend their soil against the wild Douglas MacArthur who rejected China’s orders and crossed the Yalu River (And to their credit he was later removed from his position for campaigning atom bombs to be dropped in the region.) This isn’t about the past, but who’s to say the Chinese would participate again unless their interests were threatened. I would even go as far as to say that China would support a unified Korea, either one founded in communism or democracy. A unified Korea would be an autonomous nation without temporary war, and therefore, without American troop presence. I don’t mean to be speculative, especially since history has a habit of being unpredictable (Please excuse the irony). I am only trying to present the circumstances as they currently stand and the potential repercussions that are up for debate. The information at hand changes constantly as well, which only further complicates the intricate situation. Let’s not forget the shock four years ago when North Korea tested their first nuclear weapon. Even this last week it was announced though the recent Wikileaks dump that Kim-Jong il previously requested an Eric Clapton concert in Pyongyang, since the dictator’s son is such a fan. Some of these developments have had more of an impact on the world stage than others… Regardless, the situation on the Korean peninsula is no light matter, and must be addressed in a permanent manner. Basically what I’m getting at is either the relationship between the two countries needs to change. Now. Or else their issues will soon become yours, mine, and everyone else’s.

Airport security crosses a few boundaries Casey sigelakis Contributing Writer

Twelve firearms and two concealed weapons were found at TSA security checkpoints this week alone, but are we sacrificing too much of our privacy for a safer flight? As of this year, the TSA has implemented invasive full body scans and pat downs for people it suspects of endangering others. This invasiveness of these measures doesn’t seem to make our flilghts safer in any significant way— any one crazy enough, and committed to the idea of bringing firearms on an airplane is probably determined enough to persevere through a few extra, annoying security checks. If one is selected for screening, he/she can choose a body pat down, which searches nooks and crannies for contraband, or a full body scan, which takes a thermal body scan of one’s entire body in search of prohibited items. While the latter doesn’t claim to save any pictures, there have been reports of up to 100 pictures being leaked onto the Internet.

There has been an uproar over the viral video (found on YouTube) of an 8-year-old boy being strip searched and patted down in front of many other airport patrons at a security terminal. Blogger John Tyner was stopped at a security gate and given the choice of either the pat down, or the body scan. While he chose the pat down, he stated, “if you touch my junk, I’ll have you arrested.” The officer on duty informed him that if he did not cooperate, he would be charged with a $10,000 civil suit. These inflammatory, seemingly pointless, and occasionally offensive security measures have too wide a disparity between their effectiveness, and the inconveniences and subsequent backlashes they cause. One poll, from states that 81% of people support the use of the new x-ray machines, while 14% do not, and 4% don’t have an opinion. An nbc17. com poll, however, says that 77% of people think the TSA has gone too far with the new security regulations: 11% say it hasn’t, and 12% are indifferent. Our priorities should be to find and put a stop to terrorism before we have to sacrifice our decency. We should go back to the drawing board, before hysteria so greatly influenced our public service policies.

Mike Landman » the lancer

} page 6 { In defense of decorations


issue 4 december 15, 2010

commercialization of Christmas and other winter holidays has made it so most of the symbols we see have nothing to do with the religious roots of the holiday. They are American, not Christian per say. These nowsecular symbols of the holidays should not be the targets in the crusade for political correctness. The Supreme Court has never ruled on a case involving holiday decorations in public schools, but has ruled on similar displays on other types of public property. The Anti-Defamation League recommends that symbols affiliated with particular religions, such as Santa Claus or dreidels, are most appropriate when displayed alongside fully secular symbols of winter, such as snowflakes. The overall message should be of celebration, not promotion of religious points of view. Without a doubt, our school’s decorations all into the celebratory category. In fact, we should be adding more decorations to embrace the spirit of the season, as long as we keep the balance between symbols of different religions and offset them with more secular snowmen and candy canes. As long as no one sets up a nativity scene or a crucifix in the middle of the quad, holiday decorations at school won’t make me feel oppressed. Christmas trees are just glitzy pine trees, after all.

Rebecca Sylvers Editor-in-Chief

In comparison to the onslaught of Christmas music and paraphernalia we face everywhere we go at this time of year, school seems barren. Aside from the occasional sad-looking paper candy cane and the Santa hat that fell off the Lancer statue, school in December barely looks different from school in any other month. Though it serves as a welcome reprieve from the holiday chaos, it’s almost lonely to have to endure the dropping temperatures (below 70 is such a drag) and the excruciating last few days before break without some soul-warming holiday cheer. I’m Jewish, so my version of holiday cheer isn’t all Santa Clauses and reindeer. But after 17 winters of only a token menorah, if that, in shopping mall décor, I’m now so accustomed to the omnipresence of Christmas imagery that I just associate it with winter. I do understand the push to keep religion out of schools, especially for non-educational purposes. I also, however, think that as high school students, we of the minority faiths have strong enough senses of self not to let a few ornaments get us down. It doesn’t seem worth it for everyone to be deprived of decorations on our account. I have, in fact, seen at least enough Hanukkah decorations to be proportionate to the school’s number of Jewish students, not that I would mind more, as well as more representation of even less pervasive holidays. Many would argue that these decorations are an unnecessary proliferation of religion into the public school environment. I disagree. I’m a huge proponent of the First Amendment. I have to be—I’m a member of the free press. And I do hold that freedom of religion encompasses freedom from religion. But the question then becomes not “does the First Amendment bar us from having holiday decorations?” but rather “are these decorations religious Stop and smell the christmas trees—Editor-in-Chief senior Rebecca Sylvers enough to come under appreciates the celebration of Christmas, while remaining true to her Jewish beliefs. question?” I think not. The

Opin ions brief Projects pile up before winter break

ne w s paper


“Don’t procrastinate” We always hear teachers say. Indeed, we at The Lancer have found another example of when teachers should follow their own advice. It’s the week before the week before winter

break— you’ve just finished your nonsensical government project, and you’re prepared for the stats test on Tuesday. You expect some new lessons, maybe a little busy work here and there, but as you go from class to class on Monday, you find something much worse. A book report. A massive history chart. Your math teacher’s attempt at making the class fun and interactive. Teachers realize that they need to assign a project, and they see that they only have two weeks left— it would be an ample fit if all the other teachers didn’t have the same problem, and the same solution. So as students we struggle with this pre-break (at a time when attention spans are already dwindling) homework load.

» REACT Teaches, what are your thoughts on holiday decorations in school?

“If you celebrate one you have to celebrate them all. ” -Tim Hoag, Science

“It can be done but not too any extent that it will offend people.” -Dave Singh, Math

Kanye, the man //cont. from page 5 » Kanye

Kanye followed his heart, and said what he felt needed to be said. A true disregard for the social norms. And when sheen, glam, and bravado became his forte, and the one adopted by all other artists following in his footsteps, (and when his mother died and fiancée broke up with him) he decided to change the game up again. In releasing 808s and Heartbreak in 2008, he made emotionality cool—he asserted himself as the alpha rapper by acknowledging and exploring his own failings and regrets. And whatever path he chooses, he follows to the end, explores to the fullest extent. The pinnacle of this emotional, unstable period for Kanye was the Taylor Swift incident. He was angry, he was drunk, and he felt justice wasn’t being served. I’m not saying that cockiness is what makes a man, of course, or something that can be even remotely construed as disregard for another’s feelings. This particular miss-step, in ways, speaks poorly for Kanye. However, his poorer qualities are not mutually exclusive with his great, distinguishing ones. That is to say, a righteous conviction of self-worth is what creates great works, regardless of others’ beliefs or opinions. This attitude has informed his music. In the year following this T. Swift debacle, everybody thought Kanye, who was already obviously down, was finally out. Instead, he created the deepest, musically and lyrically, hip-hop album of our generation. He spent two years on the album in the studio, disregarding all of his own precedents. The sampling on which he once relied heavily was used sparingly (once, to be exact), and instead brought in a slew of collaborating artists for instrumentation and auxillary vocals. Reviewed on pg. 15 of Entertainment. From his genre-defining production style of the late 90s, to his seemingly effortless hit-making capabilities of all year following, nobody has told Kanye what to do. And everybody listens to Kanye. And that is why Kanye is the man.

“Santa to me is not religious. I don’t want to push religion and don’t want to ruin the fun either by not doing anything.” -Doris McDonald, Science

Something getting on your nerves about school, life, or even The Lancer? Write an angry letter. It’s the best way to reduce stress—but don’t rip this one up! Send it to us, and we’ll print what you have to say.

Sooner or later though, we’re going to have to procrastinate on a project or two. Because we’ll be spending all of our time working on the other ones. -Daniel Schechter

Don’t Ask Don’t Tell: But seriously, don’t ask There is a group of Americans that would love to serve in our nation’s armed forces. They don’t aim to do it for money, or for necessarily any personal gain. They want to serve in the army out of a deep-seated patriotism, an altruistic need to serve and protect the country they love. And the government, technically, won’t let

them…yet. With Prop 8 and gay rights more tangibly entering the public lexicon, the long-standing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy has become a topic of more and more heated debates. Congress, however, will most likely adjourn before the policy is decided officially. It was tacked on to a Defense bill earlier in the year, and was shot down, and was recently introduced as a stand-alone. The army wants the outcome to be decided as soon as possible, and Obama has openly called for DADT’s immediate repeal. For the sake of gays and America as a whole, Congress should jump on board as well. -Daniel Schechter

EDITORS ////////////////////////////////




Megan Bowser Alex Bradbury

Brian Kim Giselle Quezada Rebecca Sylvers


Sophia Chen JJ Davis Ian Doherty Alise Grave Dustin Kowell Taran Moriates Jen Smith Olivia Sundstrom Ali Wire

news Rafael Ancheta Alex Chen


Jacob Markus

website Radu Puchiu Eric Hatland

Steven Golditch Daniel Schechter



advertising manager

Nola Adedigba Emily Pinsky

Rachel Davis

features Samir Malhotra Rachel Riedel

financial manager Nikki Swift



Alex Masuoka

Lindsay Baffo Caitlin Wire


adviser Jo Zimmerman Thousand Oaks High School 2323 N. Moorpark Rd. Thousand Oaks, California 91360 Phone: (805) 778-0947 Fax: (805) 374-1165 The Lancer is the official school publication of Thousand Oaks High School, created and produced by students in Advanced Journalism. The Lancer is a member of the Journalism Education Association (JEA), National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) and Columbia Student Press Association (CSPA). Call (805) 778-0947 for advertising rates and information. The Lancer reserves the right to refuse advertising deemed inappropriate for high school publication. Guest editorials and “Letters to the Editor” are welcome, but must be signed and are subject to editing for length, libel, obscenity and grammar.



issue 4 december 15, 2010

} page 7

Bring this ad in and buy one, get one free!

page 8 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010



Every Lancer has a story: Sophomore Valerie Wiley OLIVIA SUNDSTROM Staff Writer

For some, life without music is unimaginable. For sophomore Valerie Wiley, life without music does not exist. Wiley never goes a day without arranging music for choirs and musicals, playing a vaVALERIE WILEY riety of instruments, singing or acting. Wiley’s mother taught her music and Wiley always sang in choirs growing up. “My world has revolved around music for as long as I can remember,” Wiley said.

She also plays the piano, violin, viola and the mandolin, which she just started playing last year. Wiley is also first stand violinist for the CVUYO preparatory orchestra. She plans to pursue her love for music after high school by going to a college of music or becoming part of an orchestra. “I think it would be really cool to travel the world and get to perform or sing, and do something I’m passionate about for a living,” she said. She has already begun to prepare herself for the future by getting experience today. Wiley has gained experience with performing and expressing herself through music by being in choir and theater. Wiley has participated in school plays and musicals since elementary school.

“Being in theater and choir... it lets you put part of yourself out there in a different way that you can’t really do with friends or in any other situation,” she said. “I found it has always been the best way for me to express myself.” The strings program and choir have both been major components to Wiley’s life in music, but theater has given her many opportunities as well. This year, Valerie was musical director for the fall musical “The Wind in Willows.” “Being musical director for the musical was harder than I thought at first, but I got a lot of help from the other musicians and it was super fun, I got to meet and interact with a lot of new people from theater,” Wiley said. “It was a great experience to work with people who were all passionate about the same things.”

Through expressing herself and performing, Wiley has come to a conclusion as to why she loves music so much. “I always get nervous, but in the end I always feel accomplished cause every time I go out and perform, I feel like I have improved in a small way each time,” she said. “And who doesn’t like the feeling of improvement and success?”

“Every Lancer Has a Story” is a

recurring feature on a randomly selected student.

Former Lancer describes college experience sean mcminn Alumnus Writer

Though it seemed like forever ago, just last June I was a senior in high school. And at the time, I thought I had it all figured out. I was Editor-in-Chief of The Lancer. I was receiving a commendation from the mayor. I was going steady with my high school girlfriend. I got into two of my top three schools and I was getting A’s in nearly all my classes. Flash forward five months. I’m struggling to get a spot on the school paper. I don’t even know the name of my town’s mayor. I’m currently without a girlfriend, and I work my butt off every day just to pull low B’s in class. But, man, am I loving it. Going off to college means something different to everyone. For most, it’s the promise of a good education and potential attractiveness in a tough job market. And, of course, that is part of it for me. But, what really resonated with me is the true independence college brings.

The first day I came to Cal Poly, after several teary goodbyes from my parents, I went off to help my friend move in. As I was walking to his dorm, it struck me. I could stay there all night and there would be nothing to stop me. Heck, I could walk aimlessly around the campus all night, and I would have absolutely no one to report to. And that self-reliance truly is a double-edged sword. Sure, it’s great to be able to do what you want, with no curfew, no authority there to stop you. But on the other hand, it means that if you have a problem, you better fix it, because no one else will. You’re hungry? Make the quarter-mile walk to the nearest dining hall. Feeling sick? Get over to the health center on the other side of campus and see a nurse. Have two midterms tomorrow morning? Sure, you can play those extra two games of FIFA with your roommate, but you better be prepared to stay awake until sunrise studying. And speaking of FIFA, my dorm’s video game of choice, life in the residence hall is probably my favorite part of college. Within the first week of school (which felt more like summer camp than it did college), my 24-person floor became a sort of family away from home.

When I fell sick during week 6, my friend down the hall gave me enough tea packets to last a month. When my neighbor picked up food poisoning from one of campus dining’s nutritiously questionable restaurants, two of the guys on our floor stayed with him at the hospital overnight. But that’s not to say that my neighbors and community members aren’t great friends as well as family. I’ve been bored maybe five times since I moved to college because there is literally always something to do with them. Whether it’s playing video games with the guys upstairs, making an impulsive Taco Bell run with the floor after a two-hand-touch football tournament, or going to Salsa dancing with the girls down the hall, you could fill your entire day with social activities. However, that’s not always a good idea. Life at Cal Poly is busy enough without all these exciting things to do with friends. Right away I noticed a huge difference in the amount of work required at Cal Poly versus what work I had to do at TOHS. The first week alone, I had three chapters of reading in my newswriting class, four chapters in my mass media studies, and nine chapters to read for public speaking. And, with the exception of the public speaking handbook, these

aren’t little dinky Folger Shakespeare size pages. These are chapters that take an hour or more to read each. Though it feels like ages ago now, I realize it was actually less than three months ago when my roommate walked in from his first midterm, hardly three weeks after class started. He said with a deer-in-the-headlights look on his face, “Dude, we’re not in high school anymore.” And that, perhaps, sums up my college experience. So much is new to me: the intense study sessions, the late night food runs, the crazy parties, the new friends, the sardine-packed dorms, the Russian Roulette my stomach plays every time I sit down at VG’s Café, the rushing of the field after a rivalry soccer game, the hours of video game-based procrastinating before a final, the crazy professors and the three hour lectures. Those can all only come together in one place. College.


» see FEATURES, page 13



issue 4 december 15, 2010

making magic Students bring Quidditch, the sport made famous by Harry Potter, to the fields of TOHS with new club

SWEEPING THE FIELD— (Top) Sophomore Cory Hard flies past Keeper senior Lance Goetsch to make a goal, alongside teammate senior Uriel Gamboa. (Bottom) Hard, Goetsch, Gamboa, and junior Matt Chung relish in victory after having scored a goal.


} page 9



What do you think about Quidditch Club?

Features Editor

Every Tuesday when announcements come over the speakers, students stay silent and listen to the list of the day’s club meetings, but at the mention of one club, conversations spark up between classmates. In just its first year, Quidditch Club is becoming a popular topic around campus. The club plays Quidditch every other Tuesday on the back field and holds discussions during its other meetings in D-1. Quidditch, for those unfamiliar with the world of Harry Potter, is a sport played on flying brooms across a large round field with three goal posts on each end. It is almost like basketball, only on brooms. Although the teams are significantly smaller than those from the Harry Potter series, the rules and positions are basically the same. The club, founded by seniors Blake Husserl and Phillip Chou, was brought up as an idea last year by a group of seniors. However, since those seniors would not be around to start the club, Husserl and Chou took it upon themselves to bring Quidditch to TOHS. At the start of the year, they had a lot of students come to their meetings, but as the year has progressed, the club’s members have thinned down to around twenty dedicated participants. “We want a lot more participation,” Husserl said. “We really would like all the younger kids to come back to the club and try it out.” The members that remain faithful to the club’s activities are fans of the sport as much as they are the world of Harry Potter. “I like the intensity and skill involved, combined with the fact that everyone has brooms between their legs. [It’s] hilarious,” senior Chetan Hebbar said. The game requires a substantial amount of devotion and energy, and members get very involved in the matches. “It’s a friendly environment—it’s kind of a low key competitive feeling,” Husserl said. “No one holds grudges, it’s all fun.” New members are not only drawn in by their love for the Harry Potter series but also by their curiosity about how to play the game. Some people have played or heard of Quidditch outside of the school, but the majority of the school’s Quidditch players are just now learning to play. “I first saw it on YouTube a while back, and I thought it was awesome. The rules are really well thought out,” Hebbar said. “I joined because I really wanted to play! It’s really fun, especially when you have a bunch of your friends with you.” Not only does the club give friends a new kind of lunchtime activity to participate in together, but it is an excellent way to meet new people and make friends. “I feel like it’s a great way to get underclassmen involved,” Husserl said. “You’re getting rid of boundaries and bringing all kinds of students together.”

“I’m totally gonna go next time. It totally makes me feel like the campus understands me as a Harry Potter fan.” sarah speer Junior

“It makes me smile whenever I hear the announcements.” robin bromberg Teacher

“I think it’d be cooler if they were really flying. It’s odd that they aren’t flying.” bob tokumaru Sophomore

“I think it’s awesome and hilarious, and they need a broom closet. I’m tired of them storing their brooms in their brooms in my room.”

marty crawford Teacher

How to play Quidditch: POSITIONS

1 Beaters 2 Chasers 3 Keepers 4 Seekers 5 The Snitch


aim to knock the Chasers back to their goal posts. To do this, they must throw the Bludger (a handball) at the Chaser and hit them, but only if they have crossed the halfway line.

run across the field and try to score goals. They can score a goal by throwing or dunking the Quaffle (a volleyball) through one of the goal post hoops.


act as goalies, and each team has just one. They stay by the goal posts throughout the game.


chase another player called the Snitch. Seekers do not throw balls or block them; they solely chase the Snitch. is a human representation of a ball that flies around the field, chased by the Seekers. It is neutral and does not belong to either team. If a Seeker catches the Snitch, that Seeker’s team will receive 30 points and the game will end.

RULES • • • • •

The object of the game is to score as many goals until the game comes to and end, or to catch the snitch. Regular goals are worth 10 points and the Snitch is worth 30. When the Snitch is caught, the game ends and captor’s team gains 30 points. If their score is still less than their opponent’s, the game ends in their loss. Beaters can not throw a Bludger at a Chaser unless that Chaser has crossed the halfway line onto their opponent’s side. When a Chaser has been hit, they must return to their team’s goal posts and start over.

5 1


page 10 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010

AliSe Grave Staff Writer

Happy New Year. Feliz Año Nuevo. Bonne Annee. New Year’s is one of the few non-religious, internationallycelebrated holidays but different continents, countries and individuals have their own unique traditions. This event was believed to be first celebrated, 4,000 years ago in Mesopotamia where the people had a belief that the beginning of the year started in the spring, around the time when ground was fertile. This holiday is now typically celebrated on the last day of December. And as the date has evolved, the customs have changed too. In Europe, the British believe that the first visitors seen after midnight can represent good or bad luck, depending on whether they are friends or enemies. The first male visitor should enter through the front door and leave through the back door, representing a cycle that will bring good luck for the upcoming year. Brazilians usually rush into the ocean at midnight, bringing with them offerings such as candles, flowers and mirrors to the sea goddess Leman. The dropping of the Times Square Ball in New York is televised and watched all around the world and has been happening for more than 100 years. A few hours later, millions of people switch on their TVs to watch another well-known American tradition, Pasadena’s Rose Bowl and Tournament of Roses Parade. Sophomore Kingsley Hickman and freshman Henry Piper, members of the TOHS band, auditioned for and will march with the band in the parade. New Year’s is also a time for food superstitions. Good and bad luck are thought to depend on the type of food one eats. Ringshaped foods, such as Scandinavian vetebrod and round challah in Jewish tradition, are a symbol of good luck that means “coming full circle’’ Throughout southern parts of the United States, black-eyed peas are eaten on New Year’s because they are thought to bring good fortune. Eating a chicken, however, is said to cause bad luck for the upcoming year because it winged creatures tend to fly away.

ASBJØRN STØVRING Senior Asbjørn Støvring is from the city of Randers, Denmark, where the New Year’s Eve festivities are dedicated to celebration. “We have New Year’s Eve with friends, usually at my house,” he says. “At about 6 p.m., everyone in Denmark watches the Queen’s speech on TV. It is one of the programs with the most viewers.” At midnight, everyone eats a kind of swirled cake called kransekage, and drinks champagne (the legal drinking age in Denmark is 16). “It’s illegal [in the United States] to light fireworks” he says, laughing. “Everyone, up and down the streets [in Denmark], is outside at midnight, lighting their fireworks.” Finally, Støvring and his friends engage in some classic pranks. “My friends and I take shaving cream and put them on other people’s windows” he says. “Pranks are a part of New Year’s Eve, and it’s legal as long as we don’t break anything. After, we go and party until like 6 in the morning.”






issue 4 december 15, 2010

} page 11



Freshman Jahna Lindgren rings in the New Year with a bang -- literally. “We watch [the ball drop] on TV, and after it’s over, we rush and grab big cooking pans and wooden spoons and make lots of noise.” Lindgren realizes that few of her neighbors announce the New Year as enthusiastically as her family, but she doesn’t mind waking up her neighborhood. “Last year, we were the only ones,” she recalls. She has been celebrating New Year’s in this fashion for as long as she can remember banging pots and pans at midnight is a Lindgren tradition. “My dad’s family did it for years, so that’s what I did growing up.”

While millions of people watch the ball drop on TV at midnight, Sophomore Cameron Gardner will see it first hand this year from Times Square. This will be the second time Gardner has gone to New York. She first went during an eighth grade trip where she traveled to Washington D.C. “We went to museums, and didn’t really do anything,” she remembers. But this time, Gardner is anticipating a more exciting experience. “Times Square will be absolutely crazy for a few days with lots of weird people waiting for New Years.” “Ice skating in Rockefeller center, a carriage ride through Central Park, tea at the plaza where Bride Wars was filmed,” lists Gardner as she names off a few activities on her agenda. She has also heard rumors that Katy Perry and Ke$ha will be performing. “I’m excited,” says Gardner. “I liked watching it on TV, but now I get to actually see it.”

canada scotland


TIMO SCHULZE germany iran

united states




NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS: “My New Year’s resolution is to try not to control things I have no control over, so I don’t carry around extra stress.”

“My New’s Year’s resolution is to become more focused in everything I do because time is the one thing I can’t gain back.”

“I want to be even cooler than I’ve ever been before because I want to find if there’s an ultimate level of cool”

-Sophomore Louise Zerr

-Junior Riley Price

-Bill Gemberling Math teacher

“My resolution is not to judge people when I first see them because I feel like I am judged when I do that.”

“I guess a few of my New Year’s resolutions are to manage stress better, take a trip somewhere fun, stop complaining, start actually taking vitamins, and start reading the Bible.”

“My New Year’s resolution is to work as hard as I can to be in the best shape I can be , in order to make the National Water Polo Junior Olympics one last time before college.”

Senior Timo Schulze came to the United States when he was nine years old, and he brought the time-honored German New Year’s traditions with him. “Every year we watch a German short film called Dinner for One, which was made in 1940” he said. “It’s about an old woman who invites four of her dead friends over for dinner, and her butler pretends to be those friends. It’s silly.” Dinner for One is a comedy that is shared by millions. Originally used as a time slot in between aired broadcasts, it’s popularity earned it a record for most repeated show on television. After the movie, Schulze and his family eat apple strudel and drink champagne with other German families. “The people in Koeln (Schulze’s hometown) like to socialize with others who speak their language, so they all party together.”

-Sophomore Stefania Cardenas -Senior Kim Stimson

-Senior Samantha Hain


MARINA Sanchez

JED McGUIGAN Freshman Jed McGuigan celebrates New Year’s with lots of dancing, snacking...and plaid. “Plaid is basically a requirement [at parties],” says McGuigan. “If you’re an adult, and you have a kilt, you wear that.” McGuigan is from Edinburgh, Scotland, where the New Year’s parties are spent with friends and family. New Years’s is known as Hogmanay, which means ‘Night of the Candle’. “We mostly eat finger food [on New Year’s Eve], and there’s a lot of traditional Scottiah dancing. At parties, everyone dances until it’s after midnight,” he said.


DR. MALHOTRA For Science teacher, Dr. Nikki Malhotra, New Year’s is a time to get together with friends and family and celebrate. “On New Year’s Eve, my family and I spend time together and go out to parties, “ she said. Malhotra grew up as a Canadian citizen, where her father worked in the military. To her, New Year’s is like any other holiday. “It’s a pretty common holiday,” she says. “Some people [in Udhampur] go to early morning temple, but over the years, the holiday has become more Americanized... it’s changed a lot.”


Senior Marina Sanchez has never lived in Mexico, but that doesn’t stop her from participating in the New Year’s Mexican (Latin) tradition of eating twelve grapes at midnight. “It’s actually a wish for every month of the year. Right at 12 a.m., when the new year changes, we eat grapes.” Each grape serves a specific purpose. The 12 grapes signify the 12 month’s in the upcoming year. “The grapes are like our New Year’s resolutions. They are not random wishes. They are wishes you really want to come true.” Sanchez’s parents came over to the U.S. before she was born and brought with them this special tradition. “My mom and dad have celebrated this ever since I have remembered. I would like to pass this on to my children because I want expose them to this tradition.”


Junior Alex Morris may not be from another country, but she annually celebrates the Persian New Year. “My stepfather is from Tehran, Iran, where they celebrate Norooz,” she says. “Norooz is celebrated on the first day of spring [in March], as opposed to January first. Next year, the year in Iran will be 1390, while it is 2011 in the United States” Perhaps the most important aspect of the Persian new year is the Haft Sîn, which is a symbolic display of food and items traditional to the Iranian culture. There are seven different ingredients to the Haft Sîn (called the Seven S’s, for their true Persian names) that represent rebirth, affluence, love, medicine, beauty, sunrise, and patience. Besides edible qualities, some personalize their displays. “Some people put mirrors [in their Haft Sîn], to represent cleanliness and honesty, or eggs, which represent fertility,” she says. “On the day of Norooz, some families visit one another and admire each other’s Haft Sîns.” After the visiting, Morris and her family enjoy a meal of traditional Persian foods with her stepfather and family, which consist mostly of lamb, vegetables, and other unique delicacies. “The Persian new year is mostly about praising others and celebrating the beginning of spring,” Morris said.

page 12 { RACHEL DAVIS’


Q & A with junior

issue 4 december 15, 2010



Q: What does fashion mean to you? A: It just kind of shows what kind of person you are because you’re not afraid to wear what you want to wear. Q: What are you trying to show with your style? A: I just want to look different than everyone else; I don’t want to be the same. Q: Is there any unique way that you style your clothing? A: I mean sometimes I’ll cut my clothes to make it look even more different. Q: Why do you make alterations? A: I started at the end of last year. I just have plain boring clothes and I thought if I cut them they would be more interesting. Q: What inspires you? A: Different characters from movies, like The Joker. They’re interesting. I’ll find clothes that remind me of them or resemble them.

Melissa CAREY

UNIQUE STYLE—Junior Melissa Carey poses in one of her favorite outfits that shows her distinctive style. The collar was cut from a old plain shirt that she wears to create a gothic look, which is paired with converse boots , cat ears, and a simple dress that has a hint of a rocker edge.



As accessories become more popular, one is currently standing above the rest. The “I ♥ Boobies” bracelets, first sold online at, are becoming fashionable for a cause. All profits gained from the bracelets go to supporting breast cancer research. The Keep a Breast Foundation holds the “I ♥ Boobies” campaign to increase awareness of breast cancer in teens by using the works of artists and musicians that teens look up to. The bracelets first became popular at events like Warped Tour 2010 and other concerts. As the campaign’s popularity spreads, so does the awareness of breast cancer. Zumiez, the first store to sell the bracelets, has been a big part of bringing attention to the cause. “It definitely increases awareness,” Thousand Oaks Zumiez regional manager Jesse Holliday said. “I just had a mom buy her boy one. [When] she asked him why he wanted it, he said ‘It helps with breast cancer.’” The campaign, however, does not stop with bracelets. It includes anything from watches to shirts — even baby clothes. Although they are made specifically to improve awareness of breast cancer, many schools around the country are banning them because of the word “boobies.” Los Cerritos Middle School’s administration banned students from wearing any of the articles that contain the word “boobies” on them. “If I would say ‘boobies’ in the classroom, they would say that it’s inappropriate. What makes this any different?” Los Cerritos teacher Kacy Butcher said. Because people are beginning to wear the bracelets, students believe they are starting to lose their significance. More are starting to wear them for style rather than for the cause itself. “It’s turned into just a bracelet,” sophomore Matt Buzzeli said. “It used to be for a cause, but now it turned into a trend.” Even though they might be losing meaning, nonetheless, the bracelets still help with breast cancer, and they still offer an easy and stylish way to help patients. “I think it’s good that people are helping people,” sophomore Tommy Militello said. “You get a cool bracelet and you get to do something good.”


Why do you wear it? “Just to support breast cancer, my grandmother had it.”

adam premo Sophomore

“I have a friend whose mom has breast cancer, so I bought it for her.” jared hillard Sophomore

“It’s a trend. They’re pretty awesome.”

nick pranzo Senior

“I was in Zumiez and the young lady talked me into it.”

Visit DriversE and en ter discount* during the on code GAHS3 line payment process.

Online Drivers Ed

• Fun, flexible lessons so you pass your permit test • Georgia DDS-licensed • 50 free online permit practice tests

Want a fast, easy way to fundraise for your class? Earn a 25% commission and save your friends 15% off drivers ed. Visit *Discount for online drivers ed class only. H_BW_10x7_F21 © 2010

Driving Lessons in Your Area

• Practice driving in brand-new BMW MINI Coopers! • Free driving lesson pick-up and drop-off • Professional instructors teach you to drive Questions? Call us at 770.225.0044.


dustin queen Junior



issue 4 december 15, 2010

} page 13

The Lancer is following students through the application process. We will provide periodic updates on students’ progress as well as discuss broader college topics. WIKIMEDIA COMMONS » WITH PERMISSION


College Updates


philip hanley

daniel luo

Senior Spencer Boone applied early decision to the University of Pennsylvania, his first choice school, on Nov. 1. “It is my first school, and it just feels right to me. It’s a good community of people,” Boone said. A month later, in his fifth period class, he anxiously checked the UPenn website on his phone. This year, the early-decision pool was the largest ever, but unfortunately, he was deferred by the admissions board, which means that Boone’s application will be sent to the regular admissions pool for review. He plans to continue to maintain his grades, and he is still applying to other universities such as UC Berkeley and Johns Hopkins. -Samir Malhotra Although UCLA has already accepted Senior Philip Hanley, he still needs to prepare for college like the rest of his class. He signed with UCLA for track this year. While jumping La Branka, however, Hanley shattered his ankle, making him incapable of practicing ahead of time for the track program at UCLA. Fortunately, his contract covers his injury. He now only needs to make sure that he is ready for UCLA’s track program. He is preparing for college taking an AP class and is trying to get in some practice; however, he is not able to do much with his injury. He feels his injury will affect his physical fitness, but he will resume practice soon. -Rachel Riedel Junior Daniel Luo thought he had everything planned for college. Just months ago he thought he would attend USC through the Resident Honors Program. When he received his SAT scores, however, he wasn’t thoroughly satisified because they were not as high as he expected. He will re-take the SAT in the spring and will reapply to USC his senior year. Now, he has the opportunity to explore other college choices, as well as apply to be the band’s drum major. Luo is willing to forgo an early entry to college to spend another year with his friends in high school. -Katie Staten

» REACT What do you think about Questbridge? “Even though I wasn’t matched initially, I don’t have to do my essays, and I have a 40 percent chance of getting into my school [through regular admisson].” -Ali McCranie Senior

“They [QuestBridge] go out of their way to get you what you deserve.” -Lucero Segundo Senior


SAMIR MALHOTRA Features Editor

With college prices already at an exorbitant level and rising, many high school seniors are faced with the problem of paying for their college educations. QuestBridge, a program founded in 1994, provides students from low-income families with an opportunity to pursue college education at leading institutions by linking them with colleges, scholarship providers, employers and organizations which provide financial aid. Through these scholarships, the program aims to increase the percentage of talented low-income students at notable universities throughout the nation. Students at TOHS are taking advantage of the program. Senior Giselle Quezada was accepted into The University of Chicago; Northwestern University accepted Senior Lucero Segundo through QuestBridge after math teacher Manny Valdez nominated her for the program. In preparation for the inevitable college application process, Segundo volunteered at the Westminster Free Clinic and participated in the CLU Break Freee (sic.) program, in which she directed financially struggling families to professionals who could help them. The application process for QuestBridge requires detailed family background and an application similar to the Common Application. If accepted, applicants apply up to eight of the 30 QuestBridge partner schools. If the applicant is accepted by the schools, he or she receives a full-ride scholarship. Some colleges accept the QuestBridge application, while others require the Common Application plus supplements. Segundo applied to five schools and was matched with Northwestern University. “Not only do they [QuestBridge] get you a full scholarship, they try to get personal with you. You’re not just another applicant. They really go out of their way to get you what you deserve.”


» Over75% of QuestBridge finalists are in the top 5% of their class

» Finalistsscore an average of

1940 on the SAT, or a 30 on the ACT

» 77% ofthe students will be the first in their family to attend a four year college

» 268

students offered full ride scholarships Source: QuestBridge 2009 Statistics

Maddie Elia

Lidia Villeda

Accepted into University of Rochester

Still considering college choices.

JT Lawson Applied for ROTC Scholarship

en route to COLLEGE Mapping their progress

page 14 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010






ade the grade... ho m Lindsay Baffo

I read the news t o d a y, o h b oy .. . A bo u

s e l e t l a a e S B or F MEAN MISTER Mustard



The Beatles: Now on iTunes Lindsay Baffo Entertainment Editor

“Tomorrow is just another day. That will change your life forever.” An all too vague headline appeared in black and white on the iTunes home page. I searched my brain for the schedule I had mentally prepared for the following day. November 16th: party Tuesday, hair cut, Coffee Bean run, The Beatles on iTunes? Oh yes, that “life-changing” moment. The Beatles’ discography has been absent from iTunes since its inception ten years ago, but Apple recently made the iconic band’s catalogue of music open to the public. The ongoing dispute between Apple and The Beatles’ copyright holders came to a close after a possible Beatles release on iTunes was supposedly put to rest by Apple itself. Only until an official joint statement announced by Apple, The Beatles’ EMI and Apple Corps. did we finally welcome The Beatles to the 21st century. On Nov. 16, early birds were

Entertainment Editor

Our modern-day Woodstock, know as Coachella, is the Mecca for indie rock bands. The pilgrimage to Indigo Valley is exhausting, but so worth it, and the heat didn’t seem too much for Paul McCartney, who headlined the three-day festival two years ago. At this time, the Beatles tribute bands were practically begging stray audience members to take their demos. A free CD that nobody wants? I’d advise you to go into a different line of business. Mister Mustard was not one of them. Referred to only by his alias, Mister Mustard has transformed The Beatles’ classics into inventive remixes and mash-ups. I’m sensitive when it comes to tampering with The Beatles’ sound. If people would stop covering their music, all would be right with the world. But Mister Mustard is different. And if you had told me a month ago, that I would enjoy an auto-tune Paul McCartney, I might have hit you with a bass guitar. He remixes “Octopus’s Garden” in his first song on the demo. Opening with the familiar guitar riff from the aforementioned song, the sensual bass line from “Come Together” crosses with strong drumming. My personal favorite is the remixed “Happiness Is A Warm Gun.” A voice whispers “we’re going down.” John Lennon sings slowly, but steadily and blends in with excerpts from the Across the Universe rendition. The song is met with effervescent wisps and swells, and a consistent rhythm. The Beatles are untouchable, but music is on a constant cycle of recreating and reconstructing itself. Just as long as man continues to appreciate the music, the Beatles will continue to be the driving force they were 40 years

ago. And though Mister Mustard can’t improve the original style, I happen to like the interpretation.

greeted by the entire Beatles catalog available for purchase on iTunes. In fact, the entire iTunes Store home page was a flooding tribute to The Beatles, including a separate micro-site showcasing further Beatles content, as well as music videos, live concert footage and the Apple ad campaigns. The records are priced at $12.99 for single discs and $19.99 for double discs, like the White Album. The Beatles Box Set features all of the band’s studio albums and the Past Masters collection for $149.99. But what is a cultural triumph without some sort of speculation? Bloggers are referring to this as the “disappointment of 2010,” right behind Tiger Woods and the midterm elections. Let’s not forget the iPod junkies, who feel The Beatles were only relevant to music 40 years ago. Instead of offering a web-based version of iTunes, CEO Steve Jobs felt it necessary to relive a boyhood dream of his and spend his corporation’s money on the over-advertising of The Beatles on iTunes campaign. The fact that The Beatles’ music was never available for purchase on iTunes never stopped the die-hard fans from going out and buying the CDs. An exhausting overexposure like this would have George Harrison turning in his grave. Still, it doesn’t bother me, and it shouldn’t bother you. The Beatles are immortal, the monarchy of pop music culture. They bridged the gap of time and music, and still continue to outsell themselves with each coming year. There will be another iPod, folks. But never again, will there be another Beatles.

“A Day in the life”—The British Invasion of 1964 sparked a musical revolution that took the world by storm. The fresh-faced quartet released 13 studio albums over the course of seven years together. Though it’s been over 40 years since their last public performance, their music continues to transcend generations. From top: personal messages to the Beatles are grafittied on a sign that pays tribute to the album Abbey Road; the Beatles arrive in America Feb. 1964, greeted by thousands of fans; Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lennon during a Beatles performance for Dutch television. Wikimedia Commons » With Permission.

Upcoming Concerts Adam Lambert: Dec. 16 at Club Nokia As Tall As Lions: Dec. 17 at the Troubador NOFX: Dec. 31 at the Wiltern Theatre Social Distortion: Jan. 12 at the House of Blues in Anaheim Dashboard Confessional: Jan. 16 at the Troubador 30 Seconds to Mars: Jan. 14 at Fox Theater in Pomona Iron & Wine: Jan. 25 at the Wiltern Theatre

Think you know The Beatles?

Here are some surprising facts about the Fab Four you probably never knew!

» Ringo Starr wanted to be a hairdresser when he was younger.

» The final note in “A Day in the Life” is the longest recorded single note in music history.

» Paul McCartney wrote “Hey Jude” to cheer up John Lennon’s son Julian after his parents’ divorce.

» Decca Recording Co. rejected the Beatles in 1962: “We don’t like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out.”

Los Angeles welcomes The Rockettes On Dec. 10, the Radio City Rockettes performed at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles. The holiday-themed showcase dazzled audience members and brought pieces of wintertime in New York to Southern California. Ali Wire Staff Writer

I must confess, I love dance. I will watch West Side Story and Singin’ in the Rain until my family is absolutely sick of hearing Natalie Wood and Debbie Reynolds. It gives a visual aid to musical expression. It could be classified as one of the greatest interpretations of art in the world. When my mother told me we were seeing the Radio City Rockettes at the Nokia Theater on Dec. 10, I nearly fainted. I have never been a huge Rockettes fan,

but I knew they were a big deal. And, of course, they’re dancers. The Rockettes have been famous for their appearances in the Macy’s Christmas Parade and their Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Now, the Rockettes, all standing between 5’6” and 5’10,” are touring all over the country to bring their audiences the special holiday feeling. Of course, these aren’t all of the Rockettes. There are only about 16 girls performing in the shows; the others are still at Radio City. The show was opened by the always amusing Bob Newhart, famous comedian and actor—and my uncle. You might have seen him as Papa Elf in the classic Christmas movie, Elf, or as Sid, the doorman in Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde. Sadly, I missed his performance (blame the traffic in Los Angeles), but others around me found him quite hilarious. The show opened to the Rockettes, dressed as reindeer, performing a jazz routine. Every movement was perfectly synchronized and effortless, as if kicking their legs above their heads was a daily ritual. The master of ceremonies was a very jolly Santa Claus, who led into the storyline of two little boys, Ben, the hopeful youth, and Patrick, the pessimist of the group, who couldn’t feel the magic of Christmas. In between dances, Santa helps the boys find a gift

for their little sister, while revealing the wonder and magic of Christmas. One might have expected extravagant dance moves that no one could possibly attempt, but surprisingly, that wasn’t what the dances were filled with. The simplicity of the dances made them look incredibly professional, and adding a chorus line into every dance did not make me bored at all. I was still amazed by the fact they could get their legs that high. The most outstanding features of the show were the special effects, including a moving scenery during a New York City bus scene (not to mention the moving bus itself). “Snow” and streamers blown into the crowd brought the audience into the show. The whole crowd was buzzing, trying to grab onto the colored streamers for souvenirs. The audience seemed to enjoy the effects the most out of anything. Although everyone gasped and applauded after every chorus line, the New York City scene got the most attention. The background was incredibly realistic, and looked like a lot of time and money had been spent on it. After the show, I walked out of the theater, my cousins “tap-dancing” on the sidewalks. It was an incredibly inspiring performance, and it felt like a great way to start off the holidays.


entertainment LANCER Holiday Wishlist 1. HP laptop—Nola Adedigba 2. Refrigerator magnet—Rafael Ancheta 3. Judy Garland Lost Tracks Box Set—Lindsay Baffo 4. Pittsburg Steelers Snuggie—Megan Bowser 5. Inception—Alex Bradbury 6. New stickers for Rubik’s cube—Alex Chen 7. A good winter break—Steven Golditch 8. Facial hair—Brian Kim 9. Mittens—Jacob Markus 10. Nokia N8—Samir Malhotra 11. New iPhone from AT&T—Emily Pinsky 12. MacBook Pro—Giselle Quezada 13. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World—Rachel Riedel 14. Steven Golditch—Daniel Schechter 15. Skins Seasons 3 & 4—Rebecca Sylvers 16. The Umbrella Academy coffee mug—Caitlin Wire 17. Kitchen renovation—Mrs. Zimmerman

What areyou listeningto? freshman

“[‘Lose Yourself’ by Eminem] expresses the monumental culmination of years and years of living a hard life and going through a multitude of uphill struggles, which is an intense concept to handle and relate to...each and every line captures the emotions within me.”


»Melissa Glusac

“I’ve been listening to ‘Jilted Lovers and Broken Hearts’ by Brandon Flowers. It’s one of the more upbeat songs on the album [Flamingo]. It reminds me of Las Vegas, and I like it because it’s about a guy who’s down on his luck. It’s relatable; a novel in a song. It’s about the search for yourself.”

Upcoming Albums

“I’ve been obsessed with ‘Around Us’ by Jonsi. When I waited nine hours to see Jonsi live, it was the best day of my life. The song was the last of his set which made it really special. It starts really calm and beautiful, and his voice transcends above the music, until it all builds up. It’s just so pure.” Want to be featured in the next issue? Let us know what you’re listening to! Email us at

Taran Moriates Staff Writer

Cameras snap rapidly. Flashes bounce off his tinted shades. His jewelry glints brightly. Gallons of ink are put to use. All of it formed to say the same thing. Controversy. A massive force, trying to overcome him. His hands continue to reach, reach, reach for the top. He is gone, defeated by the monster. He rises, better than ever. He flies to the highest pedestal—at last! Kanye West is a phoenix. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Kanye’s newest album. You pop it into your computer, stereo, whichever. Doubts cross your mind. Did I really just spend $9.99 on that jerk Kanye? People. Too influenced by what is told to them. He is a musician, is he not? Okay, okay, I’ll judge by the music. The first track plays. The doubts, the voices, the fear—gone. Nicki Minaj is talking. There! She got my attention, she’s got the media’s, she’s got the world’s, with the best advice in a while—“Zip it, listen!” A “Glee-esque” chorus begins, then Kanye’s rapping. The emotion is obvious. This is Kanye, not the glitz and glare from the flash. Okay, maybe this was money well spent, but that was just one track. The CD shifts to the next song. You notice your hand turning the volume up, just a little. A melancholy, unique beat begins, along with Kid Cudi expressing West’s predicament—“No more chances if you blow this.” Kanye knows this, he accepts it. This is his redemption. No, it is more than that—it is his revolution. Another track fades to a close. Next track. Wait…are these gospel singers in the background? Clapping? Did I accidentally hit the skip button to the next CD in the player? Wait, there’s Kanye claiming that he’s the best and has so much of what

the song title says—power. Man, I’m really starting to believe it. I’m digging the beat and uniqueness. An innovation for sure. Competitors: take notes. A smooth piano and violin melody follow. “All of the Lights” demands attention. It reveals the album’s confidence—“extra bright, I want y’all to see this”— which is otherwise simply implied. Surely, with so many big time names accompanying the song titles, this won’t work. Kanye is definitely trying too hard. Wrong. For others this may be true, but West is not like others—I think this fact pleases him the most—and he controls the attention among the transcendent appearances. By this time, you feel lucky. Only 10 dollars? Your stereo is not willing to accept many other discs after getting a taste of this. The album continues. The volume on your stereo rises. Next, you feel like you are in an old bar. There is an antique jukebox in the corner. It’s smoky. Quiet, solemn. “Devil in a New Dress” plays. The occupants ask for forgiveness along with Kanye, staring into their drinks. You’ve got to love that soft woman’s voice in the background, with West’s straightforward verses. Shooting forward, the disc reaches “Lost In the World.” Up and down rhythms, from the slow autotuned voices to the lively beat, creates a paradox as the song expresses confusion. I realize I’m right along with them. I’m lost. I realize that 60 minutes have gone by. I’m confused. Where’d the time go? The album is coming to a close. Pleas of “who will survive in America?” ring out aggressively. The CD stops spinning, leaving that one simple question. You sit there, amazed at the amazing work you just listened to. The answer is clear. Kanye West will survive, that’s who.

» Jamie Foxx Best Night Of My Life Dec. 21 » Keri Hilson No Boys Allowed Dec. 21 » Jesse McCartney Have It All Dec. 28

» Cake Showroom of Compassion Jan. 11

»Jingyi Li

} page 15

» Keyshia Cole Calling All Hearts Dec. 21

» Cage the Elephant Thank You, Happy Birthday Jan. 11


issue 4 december 15, 2010

Kanye West regains status with new chart-topping album

» The Decemberists The King Is Dead Jan. 18 » The Script Science And Faith Jan. 18 » Social Distortion Hard Times And Nursery Rhymes Jan. 18

Ali Wire » The Lancer.

A quiet afternoon at Caffé Aróma Ali Wire Staff Writer

I never knew just what it was about this old coffee shop I love so much. I jump out of my mother’s car, running across the parking lot to avoid the rain pouring down. In a few seconds, I’m pulling open the glass and stepping inside Caffé Aróma in Newbury Park, hiding behind Lamppost Pizza and CVS Pharmacy. It’s warm, quiet and very well-decorated. Coffee bags from Columbia and Brazil hang on the ceiling. A large portrait of a vase of flowers hangs above a couch begging to be sat upon. Not to mention the free WiFi, which a sign on the door informs me of in black and white. The place is just cozy, giving it a homey feeling with mismatched furniture. Along the walls, there are rows and rows of teacups and ornaments. At first, it seems to just be decoration, but as I get closer to examine the floral design on a plate, I notice a tiny sticker with a price on it. Almost everything there is for sale, from signs and dishes to salt and pepper shakers. Above the counter is a chalk board that lists the menu. The café serves everything from bagels with egg, cheese and ham, to turkey melts and Greek salads. The

Ali Wire » The Lancer

»Tim Mosher


coffee is warm, and possibly the best I’ve tasted. But if you’re not a coffee lover, there are a variety of other drinks to chose from; hot tea, hot cocoa, milkshakes, even your favorite brands of soda. There’s only one person working behind the counter, a smiling blonde alumna from Thousand Oaks High School. She’s quiet, but funny and polite. The employees fit in well with the calming atmosphere. There aren’t many people hanging around Caffé Aróma. It’s mainly adults and a few old folks, but it’s a great place to be for the afternoon. Employees also say that they wouldn’t mind a few teenagers coming in now and then. Aside from food, Caffé Aróma also sells jewelry and gift certificates. Prices of both the food and furniture are fairly moderate and are definitely worth the products you receive. The café is rarely crowded, and is a great place to go for peace and a good cup of coffee. Go with your friends, your grandmother or by yourself with your favorite book. You’ll enjoy yourself either way. Hold the foam—Caffé Aróma provides a cozy, antique setting in which customers can enjoy generous cups of coffee and deli-style sandwiches and salads. 2130 Newbury Road

} Entertainment page 16 { My Chemical Romance breaks the sound barrier with Danger Days issue 4 december 15, 2010

Caitlin Wire

Entertainment Editor


Gerard Way ( “ Pa r t y P o i s o n ” )

lea d voca l s

Frank Iero ( “ F u n G h o u l” )

Rhyt h m Gu i ta r

trobe lights. Synthesizers. Spandex. My Chemical Romance. Wait, what? Those four, on principle, shouldn’t be in the same sentence. But since when have My Chem gone by the book on, well...anything? In 2002, they dabbled in messy punk with their debut album: I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love. They switched to conceptual alternative rock in 2004 (Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge), and followed it up with a rock opera in 2006 (The Black Parade). Four years and another drummer later, they’re going in a completely different direction with the release of their fourth studio album: Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys. The members of My Chemical Romance have stripped away the black jackets and eyeliner that so notoriously defined them in years past. Instead, they’re filming music videos in the California desert, racing across the barren landscape in a graffitied Trans Am, wearing neon-colored masks and shooting laser guns. Three years ago, I would have slapped anyone who told me MCR would sound better with synthesizers. Now, it’s 2010, and somehow...they just made it work. There’s a certain “never-say-no” mentality about this band. Take the concept behind Danger Days, for example: it’s 2019, and some widespread disaster has wreaked havoc across the world. An organization called Better Living Industries (BL/ind) controls the remaining human population in a place called Battery City (very 1984-esque) and My Chemical Romance leads a group of vagabonds called Killjoys. Their mission? To keep art alive. Danger Days opens with a message from Dr. Death Defying, Battery City’s rebel radio host. He introduces the world MCR has created, and signs off with the proclamation “Killjoys, make some noise!” as the musical onslaught begins. “Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)” is the record’s first single, and lead vocalist Gerard Way’s lyricism at its best. The song’s obscenely long title and repeated choruses of na’s seem to mock the pop genre; the melody is catchy, the message cynical.

“ ”

There’s really nothing more to do than congratulate My Chem on blowing up the world once again.

All-star cast lights up screen in Burlesque Jen smith Staff Writer

With the whole High School Musical craze thankfully far behind us, the movie industry was long overdue for a brand new movie musical. The answer to this call: Burleque. Christina Aguilera plays Ali Rose, a bold Iowa native in the musical Burlesque, a tale of searching for big dreams in an even bigger city. After finding herself in the chaos of Los Angeles, she stumbles upon Burlesque, a secluded club with dancers that can contort their scantily clad bodies into every position imaginable. Tess, played by the immortal Cher, is the manager of Burlesque, who gives Ali a job as a dancer at the club. With the support of Jack (Cam Gigandet), a bartender at the club and assistant manager Sean, portrayed by Stanely Tucci, Ali makes her debut as a talented young star, and the rest is history. Singers are often mediocre actors, not quite measuring up to the experience of celebrities more familiar to the business. Aguilera and Cher proved to be good matches to their male counterparts, who were fantastic. Gigandet, already extremely handsome in real life, proved to be nearly irresistible in Burlesque. He plays his role with finesse, as well as with some hidden talents he boasts throughout the film. Tucci delivers funny lines and a nonchalant attitude, hilarious as always. While the vocals are undoubtedly impressive, the storyline is a bit underadvertised. Director Steve Antin places too much emphasis on the musical numbers and on making sure the glamour of Burlesque is not easily matched. There are some vague spots in the plot, however, and sometimes the backgrounds of the characters are not quite clear. We don’t even learn the last names of most of the main characters; they are referred to on a first-name basis during the entire movie. It almost prevented me from connecting to the characters on a more personal level, because I knew so little about them.

Cher, a big name in Hollywood, plays the part of manager and mentor very well; however, she is robbed of opportunities in her minimal screen time. Eric Dane, is in the movie too much; his acting, already dull to begin with, made me want to take a nap until the next musical number. The offhand remarks that hint towards the past lives of the film’s leading roles is too subtle to be completely understandable, but supplies just enough insight to be sufficient to understanding what is going on throughout the story. The main attractions to this risqué production are, undoubtedly, the musical numbers. Ten full-length songs are performed throughout the film, eight of them by Aguilera. The tempos range from peppy, catchy “Something’s Got A Hold On Me” to the noticeably more sultry “Express.” Guys will love watching Aguilera in action, singing and dancing in outfits that leave little to the imagination. For the ladies, Cam Gigandet is a sight for sore eyes, and while he doesn’t stretch his vocal cords, he certainly leaves the female viewers satisfied. The talent in the vocal leads with this cast of characters knows no boundaries. Aguilera, as the lead, has several showstopping solos that showcase her clear, strong voice. With dozens of backup dancers and a wide range of song genres, the constant shift in musical selections keeps the interest of the moviegoers. Cher, always a classic, belts out melodies of her own, including the sultry number “Welcome to Burlesque.” Her voice, very different from the effortless tones of today’s pop artists, is solid and free of flaws (yes, I am making a reference to numerous plastic surgeries that leave her face unable to create more than four emotions). The innoncent days of Disney movies are gone with no demand for a grand return. No need for Troy and Gabriella; a duo like Cher and Christina were meant to shine on the big screen in this fantastic film. Burlesque glitters, glistens and gleams. It’s cinematic gold.

“Planetary (GO!)” is the biggest step away from old sound MCR has made in a while. The blaring sirens, the techno beat...It begs to be danced to. “S/C/A/R/E/C/R/O/W” and “Summertime” are two of the album’s slower ballads, places to rest in between the catharsis of the other tracks. The former takes a step into psychedelia; the latter is too poppy for my taste. “Vampire Money” is one of my favorite songs on Danger Days. An anti-Twilight anthem written after the band’s refusal to sell out by accepting offers to write songs for the franchise, it’s raw and funny as hell; Way makes sarcastic jabs at Stephenie Meyer’s new wave vampires (“Sparkle like Bowie in the morning sun,” “Hair back, collar up, jet black, so cool!”) and later mock-begs for someone to “Gimme gimme some of that vampire money.” I had the overwhelming pleasure of attending My Chemical Romance’s album release show at the House of Blues in Los Angeles on Nov. 22. Unofficially titled the “MCRmy,” concertgoers that night were decked out in army boots, masks and neon bandanas. Some had even fashioned fake ray guns out of cardboard. Passing pieces of the set from the “Na Na Na” and “SING” music videos, and a Killjoy Carnival (“overdoing it” are two words deemed taboo by artist-extraordinaire Way), we went through the doors. More of Way’s imagination decorated the venue. Most noticeable was a plaque with a huge cartoon animal mask above the stage that proclaimed “Unity in Diversity: All Are One.” My Chem took the stage as strobe lights lit up the crowd and Dr. Death Defying’s voice reverberated through the room. They ripped into “Na Na Na,” dancing and jumping around the stage in ways middle-aged men should not be dancing and jumping. The energy was palpable, especially during “Planetary (GO!),” when my feet left the ground for a solid minute. Mosh pits erupted across the floor during “Give ‘Em Hell, Kid,” and “Teenagers” induced synchronized fistpumping that would leave Jersey Shore in the dust. There’s really nothing more to do than congratulate My Chem on blowing up the world once again. Danger Days is arguably the best record this band has produced since Three Cheers. My Chemical Romance has returned with a vengeance, and isn’t going to be leaving anytime soon.

Mikey Way ( “ Ko b r a K i d ” )

B ass

Ra y Toro ( “J e t- s ta r ” )

Le ad Gui tar

THE SYLVERS SCREEN Previously on The Sylvers Screen, our heroine said “Take that!” to Stanford after struggling to answer a question discriminating against TV. Now, she copes with the consequences. Spoiler alert: Harry Potter is involved. Sorry, third person and italics is a bit pretentious. I’ll stop. When decisions came out on Friday, I got the email no one wants to get. I guess Stanford just doesn’t appreciate TV as much as I do. To dull the initial shock, I coped in the only two ways I know how: by eating leftover Chinese food and, of course, watching TV. The Office’s “Classy Christmas,” to be exact. It was my first TV viewing in ages, seeing as my life is dominated on a near-constant basis by either college apps or newspaper deadlines. I watched with my neighbor, a fellow disappointed senior whose mother forcefed me brownies and Christmas cookies the whole night (err..morning?) After the grieving was over, the speculation began. It was more unhealthy than scarfing down a whole bag of tortilla chips while watching recorded episodes of One Tree Hill. What could we have done differently? Why doesn’t Stanford love us back? If only I’d edited my essays more, If only I’d sold my soul and joined umpteen clubs just to write them on my apps. If only I’d started playing softball at five so I could have made varsity. If only I’d written about movies. I’m okay with it, really. I am, however, starting to see the dark side, movies, as more than subpar one-night stands of video entertainment. There’s not much I dislike more than admitting defeat. But this month, I’m doing just that. Movies, you win. I blame Harry Potter. I saw it twice in a week, including the midnight premiere (talk about a collective experience). The only TV show I ever watch reruns of is Gilmore Girls, and those are free. So Harry Potter must have done something right. It was emotional and action-packed, yes, but more importantly it was big in a way TV can never be. Where better than a screen 83492374 times my size to watch Bellatrix torture Hermione or Dobby utter his last words? As much as I hate to admit it, TV would destroy Harry Potter in the worst possible way. And you know what? If Stanford doesn’t want me in all my TV-loving glory, I don’t want it either. I can still go to Brown with Emma Watson.

sports Underclassman

Scoreboard »Cross Country »»Boys’ »»»JV

7-0 7-0


»»Girls »»»JV

3-4 7-0


»Football »»JV

5-5 3-5


»Girls’ Tennis »»JV


»Girls Volleyball »»JV

10-8 14-4


»Boys’ Water Polo »»JV

17-9 12-15



issue 4 december 15, 2010


finales It was an epic fall for Thousand Oaks sports. Every varsity team made the CIF playoffs. Here is a roundup of how they did.

» cross country

The girls’ cross country team made it to Marmonte League Finals by placing third during the Ventura Country Championships. Even though it did not move on to state, the team placed a strong sixth place in the Marmonte League Finals. “It was really fun. Everyone did really well this season,” sophomore Summer Shafer said. The boys’ varsity team also did well, placing third in the Ventura County Championships, second in the Marmonte League Finals, becoming the league champions. In addition to group success, the girls’ team sent junior Melanie Joerger to Woodward Park in Fresno for the CIF State Cross Country Championships, where she placed 35th. -Sophia Chen

moving on to the Southern Section Team Finals. The girls look to have success next season, as four of their starters will return. Sophomore Sophia Chen shot a 78 in Northern Individual Regionals Nov. 1, qualifying her for CIF Individual Finals, which took place Nov. 8. She finished in the top third at the event. -Rola Adedigba

» girls’ tennis

Girls’ tennis finished with a 17-3 overall record. In the CIF playoffs the team had two solid wins against Fullerton and Louisville, both with scores of 16-2. The Lancers lost to Campbell Hall to end their season. -Michael Morgan

» girls’ volleyball

After a run to the second round of CIF, Thousand Oaks fell to Oaks Christian 34-57 on Nov. 26 to end its season. “CIF playoffs gave me a good experience offensively because it gave me a challenge with other teams,” senior quarterback Avondre Bollar said. Despite injuries to key players, the Lancers still had eight wins on the season. They progressed into playoffs as the 4th-seeded Marmonte team and won their first game against Quartz Hill, 28-21. The Marmonte League was a force to be reckoned with in the playoffs. All five of its teams won their first round games, and Oaks Christian went on to beat Westlake in the finals to win the CIF-SS Northern Division. -Rola Adedigba

After finishing in third place last season, the girls’ volleyball team sought redemption this year. For the first time since the 2008-2009 season, the team finished the regular season undefeated and won the Marmonte League title. The Lancers made it to the second round of CIF playoffs, where they lost to Edison 3-1, (18-25, 25-18, 25-16, 25-12.) “Going two rounds [in Division 1AA] is not an easy thing,” coach James Park said. The league is packed with challenging opponents. Park is concerned that next year’s competition will be even tougher due to the overall youth in TO’s Marmonte opponents. Nonetheless, he doesn’t plan to change the team’s playing style much come next season. Because there were no seniors on this year’s squad, its skill level can only improve. -Ian Doherty

» girls’ golf

» boys’ water polo

» football

The girls’ golf team went undefeated this season with 16 wins. “Our season was pure domination, our best ever,” senior Viktoria Cummings said. It entered the CIF Northern Qualifiers and earned fifth place with a score of 405, just one place shy of

For the first time in 30 years, the boys’ varsity water polo team made the semifinals of the CIF playoffs. The team finished with an overall record of 20-6. Their season ended however, to the team that handed them two of their three regular season losses: Agoura. -Alex Bradbury

} page 17

Girls’ lacrosse gets approval Rebecca Sylvers Editor-in-Chief

Girls’ lacrosse recently gained CIF status in the CVUSD and comes to campus this spring. The official approval came at a school board meeting Tuesday, Dec. 7, and applies to all area high schools seeking to start a team. A month prior, Oak Park and Agoura became the first local schools to become CIF-sanctioned for girls’ lacrosse, but now Thousand Oaks and Newbury Park will join them. Westlake is in the process of building a team and, if it does, will automatically be approved. As well as the above-listed teams, Thousand Oaks will likely play Glendale, La Canada, Pacific Palisades and Granada Hills, though no schedules have been established yet. The inaugural Lancer boys’ lacrosse season last year gave the girls a serious boost in their hunt for approval. “It really helped our cause. It made the school aware of our sport,” senior Maddie Elia said. The girls had a relatively easy time getting approved because the boys’ team had so recently jumped through the hoops of the process. “They paved the way for us by dealing with concerns from other sports about field space and budget,” Elia said. She cites support from the administrations of all the area high schools as another key reason for the approval. Though Elia and other students did the legwork, athletic director Mary Ziegler helped get the request through to Jeff Davis at the district office. Elia, originally from Pennsylvania where lacrosse is much more prominent, went into high school determined to start a team. The biggest obstacle she faced was finding girls interested in lacrosse. “It was really hard to make a sport that’s largely unpopular in this area popular and to get girls to play a sport they had never heard of,” she said. While Elia searched for players, her mom, Celia Woods, worked to find coaches and fields for the unofficial Thousand Oaks team, whose players will now be able to play at a competitive high school level. Ziegler hopes to have coaches selected and a seventh period class established by the start of second semester. Official practices will start in February in preparation for the spring season. Girls interested in joining the team should listen for announcements in the coming month.

page 18 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010



The late, great MAKEIT record break or Richard Mullaney

Alex Bradbury Sports Editor

Senior wide receiver Richard Mullaney set the single season state-record for receptions with 122 catches, including 19 in the season-ending loss against Oaks Christian on Nov 25. The record came with some controversy however. After the season, Mullaney was originally credited with only 120 receptions, which would have fallen one short of the record. “The week after the Oaks Christian game, coach came up to me and said that I was one short but that he was going to look over the footage. Coach recounted them, and he told me that I set the receiving record,” Mullaney said. Mullaney was credited with two extra catches when thorough video replay showed that Mullaney was the receiver on two hook and ladder plays on which he was not given the reception, but should have been. Mullaney has stayed humble through all his success, and realizes how instrumental his teammates were in achieving the record. “It’s a big accomplishment, I’m honored to get the award, but I owe it all to my teammates. All the record goes to them. Everyone on the line… without them none of this could have happened. And of course Avondre, without his accuracy the record wasn’t possible,” Mullaney said. Despite Mullaney’s skill, the Lancers lost 34-57 in the playoffs to Oaks Christian on Nov. 26. They did, however, win a CIF game against Quartz Hills, 28-21, and the fact that they made the playoffs in the grueling Marmonte League, is a great achievement in itself. “[The season is a] success because we went 7-3 in league and won a playoff game,” Mullaney said. “We could have been better though.” The tough competition in the Marmonte League will be good practice for Mullaney, as the school he will be attending after he graduates, Oregon State, is in the Pac-10, widely considered one of the toughest conferences in the NCAAF. Mullaney hopes to play for the Beavers at the start of his freshman year. “I’ve talked to the coaches and I can probably play right away,” Mullaney said, “but if not I can red shirt my first year and hopefully play [the] next season.” Mullaney has mixed emotions about graduating the school at which he has become a star and experienced so much. “It’s definitely sad leaving TO,” Mullaney said, “but on the other hand I’m looking forward to the next chapter of my life.” Mullaney isn’t done with Lancer athletics though: he will play forward on the basketball team this winter.

Breakit Richard Mullaney broke the state single season record with 122 catches. Michael Feistel broke a bone in his hand while practicing with the competition cheer team. They may not look alike, but they both broke barriers this football season.

I owe it all to my teammates. All the record goes to them. - Richard Mullaney

Michael Feistel

Lancer football’s unsung hero Brian Kim Editor-in-Chief

megan bowser » The Lancer

It was hard to coax anything out of him. The sports realm, so publicized with false optimism, the cookiecutter expressions, and the shallow responses inherent in every post-game conference and live interview, is no different on TO’s athletic platform. So it came to no surprise when I asked senior Michael Feistel, a softspoken 5’3” 140 pound linebacker, how he thought the fall football season went. “It was a good season.” Then a shift in his demeanor, not unlike one from his off-the-gridiron passivity to a tough-as-nails ferocity that left dents in his opponents’ shoulder pads and Marmonte League teams’ records. It was a good season, as every student at our school can attest. It was a good season—but both for football and Feistel. He explains how, in their second league game against Newbury Park , Head Coach Mike Leibin wanted to add an extra linebacker and Feistel began recording more minutes and how, before, he had only played every other series (the four downs allotted to the offense) in his junior year and the beginning of this season. “It’s my senior year. When time escapes like that, you want to play as much as you can,” he says. This newfound niche, however, did not bolster his interest in his team’s triumph over the season. “I’ve always cared about winning,” he says a bit defensively. “Before and after I got more minutes.” Even in the private school-injected league that is granted five CIF playoff berths, Feistel shone. His upper body strength coupled with a low center of gravity and quick feet solidified his position, and a probable spot on the Marmonte AllLeague teams which will be voted on by coaches come late January. His most memorable moment? “Ten tackles and a touchdown against Oaks Christian,” he says with a quick nod. Then he adds, “Which is a lot.” The end of the season came prematurely with a 34-57 beating from Oaks Christian. For Feistel especially, the second-round loss meant the end. “I was this disappointed,” he said with his arms spread wide. He is serious. And, it really is the end for the senior’s athletic pursuits. In an aerial stunt for competition cheer’s upcoming season, Feistel broke the scaphoid bone in his right hand. The scaphoid bone: “It’s the bone in your wrist that’s the most important,” he laughs. “The bone’s like a peanut and blood goes into it from the middle and then it goes up and down again,” he says, motioning with his left index finger down his right thumb. But he is content. Feistel will attend Azusa Pacific University and major in either ministry theology or business (“I like going to church and being nice to people.”) “It was a good season.” Perhaps he was only flippantly countering my hackneyed question with an answer of his own.answer of his own. Feistel in white t-shirt, Mullaney in dark t-shirt.

Lancers host first cheer comp Rebecca Sylvers Editor-in-Chief

TOHS hosted the Marmonte League Cheer Competition, its first ever, Dec. 11 in the gym. Coach Kelly Mills had been planning to host since the spring. Cheer alumni worked as spotters, while many others who just came to watch ended up helping as well. “[They] were more than glad to help,” Mills said. She invited all Marmonte’s cheer teams, but many were not yet ready to compete or otherwise opted out. The intention for the teams that did compete— Moorpark, Royal, Simi Valley and Oaks Christian, an honorary member of Marmonte since its football team made the switch—was to create a sense of league camaraderie. “It was cool seeing them outside of football games,” crowd leading captain senior Anna Stevens said. “We got to see their skills rather than just cheers.” Because the Lancers hosted the competition, they couldn’t place in the team category. In the spirit of

friendly competition, however, cheerleaders from each squad nominated other schools for nontraditional awards like Most Visual Pyramid, which Thousand Oaks won. Moorpark took this mentality to another level, by rounding out Thousand Oaks’ seven mats with seven of their own, enabling the competition to use the regulation number of mats, nine, and use the leftovers to pad the practice room. Mills hopes the addition of a local competition will enable teams to be more supportive of one another at larger competitions in the future. “At competitions, when we run into Moorpark [cheerleaders], now we can say their cheers back to them,” she said. Though the competition was the only one some of the teams will participate in this year, the Lancers have more to come, including State Championships at the Home Depot Center in Carson on Dec. 18. Thousand Oaks plans to host the competition again next year.

Rebecca Sylvers » The Lancer

Rebecca Sylvers » The Lancer

Hyping up the crowd—Senior Amelie Wagner gets the crowd involved during the Lancers’ crowdleading routine in the first ever Marmonte League Cheer Competition, hosted in the TOHS gym on Dec. 11. The cheerleaders involved in this routine are members of both the varsity and JV squads.



issue 4 december 15, 2010

} page 19

winter Warriors

athletes look for success in the upcoming season Feel the pain— Junior Matt Chun (145 lbs.) attempts a single leg take down against his Moorpark High School opponent. Chun won his bout in TOHS’ six-point loss to Moorpark. Though Wrestling comes off a third place finish last season, it hopes to win the remainder of its matches and face Moorpark again during CIF Dual Meets.

alex masuoka » The Lancer

Wrestlers begin season with new coach Ian Doherty Staff Writer

Lancer wrestlers have a new strength and conditioning coach, Richard Lemos from Royal High School. For the preseason and in-season practices, Lemos works with a group of 25 wrestlers chosen based on talent and work ethic. Lemos has worked on wrestlers’ conditioning and technique throughout the preseason, focusing on teaching ground technique, throws, take downs and pinning combos. He has also taught them different conditioning routines to get them in better shape during the season. “[The conditioning] is a hard road to travel,” senior JT Lawson (189 lbs.) said. Lawson said the first few days that Lemos came to practice, nearly half the team vomited from exhaustion after the intense session. In addition to the workouts and technical lessons, Lemos taught the team to become friends, as well as teammates. “Everyone likes him a lot and [he has] taught us [about] team bonding,” junior Matt Guido (112 lbs.) said.

At the Newbury Park Invitational Tournament, the first of the year, nearly half the team placed in the top seven of their respective weight divisions. “[It was] especially hard for the first tournament of the year,” Lawson said. Last year the team had a lineup that relied heavily on upperclassmen success. This year, the team will have to focus on mending the holes that come with graduating seniors. The first dual meet was a close match against Moorpark on Dec. 9. Junior Austin Welty (171 lbs.) and Guido both won with pins. Welty pinned his opponent in the opening seconds of the second bout of the night, while Guido won in the middle of his first round. Junior Daniel Orona (130 lbs.) pinned his foe in the second period of his bout. Despite these successes, TOHS lost by six points. “We just have to keep our heads up and try our hardest,” Lawson said after the loss. “There’s still a chance we’ll wrestle them again; and if we do, it shall be a battle.”

Seniors lead boys’ soccer team nick Laumann Contributing Writer

The boys’ varsity soccer team and coach Mark Tietjen are preparing for the start of a promising season. Last season Tietjen led the team to a fourth place finish and a winning record. Loss of keeper Juan Vitela and forward Alexis Cespedes after last season presents a potential problem, but players believe the team will be much stronger this season nonetheless. “Our players have improved, and we have a stronger team this year,” senior Brenton Frame, the starting center midfielder, said. Key players include Frame, senior Brian Kim, junior Michael Coles and junior Daniel Trautman. “[Coach Tietjen] thinks the team has potential this year and has high expectations for the team,” Frame said. Royal and Simi Valley should be the toughest opponents, but players say the team is good enough to com-

pete with any other team in the Marmonte League. The team’s main rivals are Newbury Park and Westlake. A new addition to the team is senior Eddie Vazquez, who used to play for Westlake. Along with trying to earn a starting spot and help the team out, Vazquez is especially excited to face his former team on the pitch. “I’ll be playing against friends and hopefully we can beat Westlake,” Vazquez said. The team hopes to compete for first place and win Marmonte League. “As long as everyone works hard I think we can win league and go far in CIF,” Frame said. The team lost its first nonleague game to Channel Islands, 0-4, while resting starters and getting younger players onto the field. TO won its first league game 3-0 against Royal, and will play Agoura tonight. “If we play like we did against Royal there is no doubt we should beat Agoura,” team captain senior Preston McElroy said.

winter Sports T

Helped by the influx of enthusiastic underclassmen, along with the play of juniors and seniors, the girls’ varsity soccer team is ready to go. “Our freshmen are bound to make an impact,” said assistant coach Laura Brain. Along with many talented freshmen, the team has a very experienced player in senior Heather Davis. She was accepted into USC on a full-ride soccer scholarship, and her team spirit encourages the other members to work harder. “She is inspirational because she makes sure that everyone works their hardest at practice and in the games,” senior Melissa Geiger said. Last year the team struggled due to injured players, including standouts Alyson Birgel and Michelle Cruz. “Last season was a rebuilding [year],” coach Geoff Raives said. “We had many injuries last year. There were 24 people on the team, but only 14 were able to play.” With improved health, the team hopes to have improved success. The team hosts Agoura High School in Lancer Stadium at 6 p.m. tonight. -Sophia Chen

» girls’ water polo

“It’s been a while since we got into championships,” sophomore Dana Slomiak said. The girls’ varsity water polo team has had some troubles of late, but the team is hopeful that this year will be different due to the new Olympic Development Program (ODP), designed to help players learn new offensive and defensive tactics.

Staff Writer

Overall L

» girls’ soccer

Dustin Kowell

League W

of the

“Most of the teams won’t know what we’re doing,” Slomiak said. Players, however, have had trouble getting comfortable with these advanced tactics. “I think it is hard to transition to,” senior Eleni Misthos said, “but it will make us better and get everyone on the same page.” -Sophia Chen

» girls’ basketball

Girls’ basketball is off to a fast start this season. The girls are 5-3 so far, and their team chemistry has helped them thus far. “We are like a huge family,” sophomore Lindsey Neuner said. “We have had team sleepovers and dinners. In fact, we went to BJ’s last [Sunday] night.” The girls have played two nonleague games against league opponents, Agoura and Newbury Park. The team beat Newbury, but lost to Agoura, which is expected to be its toughest opponent. “[Agoura] is a very aggressive and fast team. We will have to work hard, but I think we can take them,” Neuner said. Head coach Rick Cromwell has been making sure the team works hard. The team has been playing in summer and fall for two hours a day, six days a week. “We have a lot more sophomores this year. Last season it was mainly seniors and juniors with a few sophomores,” Neuner said. “Also we have been having so many injuries. Hopefully we won’t have any more.” The girls play Agoura in their second league game tonight. -Alex Bradbury

Boys’ basketball replaces graduates

scoreboard * scores through Monday, December 13

Women Winter









Boys’ Basketball..................................... 1





Girls’ Basketball...................................... 1








Boys’ Soccer............................................ 1








Girls’ Soccer............................................. 0








Girls’ Water Polo................................... 0
















The Lancers finished with a 22-6 overall record and a 12-2 record in league last season, finishing in first place atop the Marmonte League. Saying goodbye to graduating seniors Alex Tiffin and James Whalen was tough, but the team has several returners who have learned from playing with the two. “There are five returning starters who have plenty of leadership and experience,” head coach Richard Endres said. Senior Richard Mullaney, coming off a record season in football, will be key on offense. Senior Evann Hall, one of the league’s top players, is looking to show that he knows what it takes to be the best. “Hard work, practice everyday is what it takes to be

a top player,” Hall said. “I play within the team, it’s all about team play. I definitely have what it takes” A major question going into season was who would fill the shoes of Whalen. The answer is Austin Cagley. By playing behind Whalen, Cagley was able to improve his game and learn from one of the best players on the court. “It was a very good experience,” he said. “I had to guard him in practice which made me tougher as a player.” Historically, the Lancers rarely build the team around a superstar; they spread the basketball around. This year should prove to be a return to that form. The Lancers won their first league game against Royal, and play today against Agoura.

page 20 {

issue 4 december 15, 2010

photo essay


home for the


not a victory march— Legs reaching up, senior Emily Hops embraces the solemn mood of the advanced dance class’s piece about the Sept. 11 attacks, set to Jeff Buckley’s cover of “Hallelujah,” as a pair of male dancers lift her into the air. “The first time I did it I was really scared because I’m afraid of heights, but after I did it a couple times I was more comfortable,” she said. The dance took place during “A Day in New York City,” this year’s Winter Dance Concert, and featured an introduction sung by senior Brooke Bowers.

Homecoming came early this year, but nevertheless, the Lancer spirit engulfed thesweeps campus The spirit of winter thethroughout campus andthe week. From its enersurrounding community theitsform vibrant dance, Homecomgetic kick-off—the rally,in to finalofhours—the decorations and festive performances. ing was a fun-filled experience for all.

alex masuoka » the lancer

wintergreen—(Left) In Doris Macdonald’s classroom, physicsrelated ornaments, including senior Zachary Morgan’s (pictured here) adorn brightly colored, non-denomination trees. (Below) A festive sign hangs from a pine tree outside the main office.

solitary symbols— (Left) A Santa hat, placed atop the Lancer statue by members of ASB, lies on the concrete beneath. (Above) A candy cane dangles from a cluster of pine needles on a tree near the quad. “This Christmas, [school] is totally decked out,” junior Daniel Gober, who aided in the campus’s decoration, said. “It’s the reason I love this season.”

light me up—(Above) A Hanukkah menorah brightens the TOHS library. (Below) Strings of lights illuminate the ice skating rink at The Lakes.

photos » REBECCA SYLVERS » the lancer

KAILEY SMITH » the lancer

The Lancer Issue 4  
The Lancer Issue 4  

The fourth Issue of the 2010-11 school year.