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■ Computers

mesmorize students who are unable to focus on schoolwork

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■ Lowell’s most passionate

pet owners show off their critters as winners of The Lowell’s pet contest.

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By Deidre Foley

The group began developing the he counseling depart- website on the first day of school, ment, with the help of five after working on it a little during students, is increasing the the summer from home, according speed and ease of course selection by to Harlev. “From there, we pieced it together feature by feature,” he said. taking the process online. Seniors Max Berkowitz and El- “About two weeks before course selection, we were lande Tang and done but there juniors Ofri A parent told me that were still a lot Harlev, Waylin of bugs. About Wang and Kenny the PTSA was looktwo days beZhen — all of ing to increase the f o r e c o u r s e whom learned we programming in efficiency of Arena.” selection, had the final Advanced Placeproduct.” ment Computer OFRI HARLEV, One hurdle Science last year junior the group had — worked with assistant principal of student sup- to overcome was learning a new proport services Michael Yi to develop a gramming language, C#, to make the program that would replace the paper course selection program, according course selection procedure. “A parent to Wang. “C# is really similar to Java told me that the PTSA was looking so it was easy to pick up,” he said The website will save the counto increase the efficiency of Arena,” Harlev said. “I said that students at seling department a lot of time and Lowell could write the program, and energy, according to Yi. “Manually, to from there I contacted the counseling key the information in the computer See COURSE SELECTION on Page 8 department about it.”

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Furry friends revealed

Small step for soil Course selection moves into techfriendly domain

In the news In the news

ooking for a way to celebrate the Bs and As, or even the hard-earned Cs at the end of the grading period? As one of this issue’s opinions expresses so eloquently, you can convert your stress into school spirit at the varsity football game this afternoon! With the home game starting at 2:00 p.m., it shouldn’t be too hard to bring some of your BFFs. Tickets are available for $8 at the game, which is cheaper than a movie, so there’s no need break the bank. Also remember to grab some snacks at the vending machine — you don’t want to cheer on an empty stomach! So shout out as our Cardinals take on the Lincoln Mustangs!

Backpage

Spotlight

Lowell High School, Cardinal Edition, Vol. 218 No. 3, November 9, 2012, www.thelowell.org

Lowell The

Memes > homework #lol

kara scherer

... But a giant leap for senior Daniel Cheung as he transports a wheelbarrow of soil to the construction site of the bottle brick bench.

SFUSD notices attendance errors By Cooper Logan

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routine district check-in of school attendance records revealed a high number of mistakes in the school attendance records, according to assistant principal student support services Michael Yi. When the district checked the school records, they ascertained that 56 teachers had made 141 attendance errors, according to the Sept. 27 Union Building Committee administration meeting minutes. “Those teachers were called in and shown the printout and told to check their records to confirm  whether  it was a mistake,” Yi said. 

The district discovered the errors using a data analysis technique called a Single Period Present Report, which picks out instances where a student was reported absent for all periods of the day except one, a situation that usually indicates that one teacher  may have  made a mistake.  “It could happen that a student misses the whole day except one period, but it’s not very common,” Yi said.    But, as attendance secretary Wanda Lee points out, “students occasionally do come to school for only one period, like if they have a test they can’t miss.” To follow up, the school was told to self-monitor for attendance mistakes.  “We were instructed

to do a periodic check once every four to six weeks using the Single Period Present Report,” Yi said.  Lee, who carries out the self-monitoring, sends reports to teachers on a monthly basis if they show up on Single Period Present Reports. The teacher then verifies the student’s attendance and corrects if necessary. Attendance errors could have serious repercussions for the school.  “Two years ago when the state did an attendance audit they told us that if we had certain number of mistakes, they would send a report to the state superintendent.” Yi said.  “It is possible that there would be funding See ATTENDANCE on Page 8

Chess grandmaster dukes it out at club By Ashley Louie

What’s What’s

Inside

News

Pages

1-8

■ Students get in touch with nature, work in school garden to help build “green” bench ■ Creative students bring color to the San Francisco Public Libraries with new card designs

Sports

Pages

11-14

■ Girls’ varsity tennis slams the championship in a 5-2 lead against Wash

Columns

Pages

16-17

■ Teens’ love for animals range from furry pets to scaly fish

Opinion

Pages

18-19

■ Soccer player encourages fellow students to embrace school spirit and attend games

the game was lasting longer than ith hearts pound- expected. “DeFirmian generously ing and hands trem- offered the draw due to it being the bling, students prepare last game and the late hour,” Hoffto make a move—on the chessboard. man said. According to Fahey, chess memOn Oct. 12, a math teacher, with the help of several students, played ber junior Jacky Lau also performed to a draw in a game of chess with very well. Lau played what DeFirmian considered a retired chess the “best game.” grandmaster. noticed During the DeFirmian is “dedi- Fahey that Lau was chess club meetcated to putting Low- very quiet; he ing, Grandmaster Nick Deell back on the na- concentrated on the game Firmian played and was able to a 30-board tional chess map.” disregard dis“simul” (simultractions. “He taneous exhibition) against 26 Lowell students and really locked in,” Fahey said. While playing against DeFirmfour faculty members, defeating all but one opponent — math teacher ian, Lau tried not to “worry about the outcome.” “I didn’t think I was Karl Hoffman. Hoffman credited his draw to going to do well,” Lau said. Despite several chess members who were the intensity of the game, Lau constantly looking over his shoul- thought the match with DeFirmian der and providing tips throughout was very “friendly.” According to Fahey’s School the game. He added that time may have also played a factor in his and Loop post on Sept. 30, those stuDeFirmian’s decisions to draw, as dents that played the best games

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Chess grandmaster Nick DeFirmian makes a move in a game against junior Leighton Chen, one of 30 boards, at a Chess Club meeting on Oct. 12.

of chess would be rewarded with a prize, and those who played to a draw would receive a giant pizza and a game posted on YouTube and www.chessgames.com, a chess database and community. Fahey plans to post Lau’s moves on the website, and he decided to reward the entire

club with a pizza party during their Oct. 19 meeting. Nick DeFirmian was initially recruited from New York City by the Mechanics Institute of San Francisco to work with San Francisco and other Northern California students See CHESS on Page 8


2 NEWS

November 9, 2012

NEWSBRIEFS

Counselors tweet updates, news

Mom and baby fall on bleachers During the Oct. 19 varsity girls’ volleyball game at Lowell against John O’Connell, a mother and her approximately one-year-old baby had an accident. According to principal Andrew Ishibashi’s recollection of the mother’s story, the mother slipped on an unlocked portion of the handicap bleachers and accidentally dropped her child as she fell. The baby fell and hit its head, and was cared for by ambulance workers when they arrived. Ishibashi said the paramedics saw no blood or signs of swelling. The baby’s sister, who plays for O’Connell, saw the incident and immediately ran off the court to her family, according to junior middle hitter Amorelle Applin. The referee called a time out and the game was stopped for at least five minutes, while people tended to the family, according to junior outside hitter Katie Hwang. According to Applin, Lowell coach Steven Wesley ran to the scene and called 911. “After the game I saw the mother and baby get into the ambulance,” Applin said. Wesley declined to comment on the incident. In response to the incident, Peterson and Ishibashi decided to place a sign on the bleachers saying, “Do not use unless in locked position.” The administration filed an incident report and has not heard from the family. — Ashley Louie

New dance policy gives time outs Some might remember being on “time out” as a child in preschool, but that means of punishment came back to haunt some attendees of this year’s homecoming dance. Due to the administration’s concerns about the way some students dance, chaperones were directed to implement a new policy at the homecoming dance on Oct. 19 to deter students from dancing with sexual overtone. The punishment had three tiers of enforcement. Students observed to be engaged in “dirty dancing” were first given a warning and told to sit to the side for five minutes. If they continued, they would have a “ten-minute cool down period in the building under chaperone supervision,” assistant principal of student support services Michael Yi said. He added that students faced the consequences of a third warning during the dance: a call to their parents. Yi does not believe the new policy will affect ticket sales. He believes that “students should not consider school dances to be a place to have “‘dirty‘ dancing.”  Senior Christopher Chow sees the time-outs as a threat to some students’ safety. “When the students want to freak and they aren’t allowed to, they might attend functions and clubs that offer complete freedom, but are in less safe environments, such as Glo, Hush or Klub Ice,” said Chow. “Wouldn’t it be wiser to have your students freaking in a safe environment, rather than downtown in a possibly dangerous environment?” — Ashley Louie f o r t h e c o m p l e t e v e r s i o n s of stories, please visit

The Lowell on the Web

www.thelowell.org

Visitors teach global issues, rally for student involvement By Elena Bernick

Newnham was excited to talk to stu- coordinates projects to help those kids,” n Oct. 26, two speakers visited dents about an urgent issue. “One of the Wong said. These projects include the UNICEF club to talk about things we hoped to do when making the the popular “Trick or Treat important worldwide problems, film was engaging the youth,” Newnham for UNICEF” campaign that said. “I think it was really rewarding for happens every year around such as education and poverty. Speakers Locsi Ferra, from Women me to come here and address youth who Halloween, where volunteers collect money as well as candy. and Girls Lead, a public media initia- are already engaged in global issues.” UNICEF club focuses most Last July, Wong attended a Girls Scout tive that uses media to teach audiences about the obstacles women and girls face Conference in Chicago. While there, she of its energy on raising money, around the world, and Nicole Newnham, met a representative of Women and Girls but Wong believes this is not co-director of the movie The Revolution- Lead. The representative put her in con- enough to make a strong ary Optimist, came to speak to the United tact with Ferra, who invited Newnham difference. “Since I’ve been a member of the club, we’ve had different lectures Nations International Children’s Emer- to speak with her. UNICEF club was founded last fall, about disease and poverty,” Wong said. gency Fund club. Club president junior and is a branch of the worldwide UNI- “If we only know what poverty is, and Annastasia Wong organized the event. The presentation, which went from CEF organization. “If there is a country we don’t know the causes, we can’t create 3:45 p.m to 5:00 p.m., was centered on that has underserved kids, UNICEF solutions.” getting young people involved in their community and in the world. “I think it went really well,” Wong said. “I wish more clubs had taken the opportunity to come. We had two really interesting speakers.” The event included clips from The Revolutionary Optimist, a documentary that follows an Indian lawyer as he tries to improve the conditions of a poor neighborhood in Kolkata, West Bengal, and a question-andanswer period. “I enjoyed the presentation and I really want to see the movie now,” junior Maggie Medina said. “I thought it was really interesting.” The film shines a spotlight on the people in a poor neighborhood trying to make a difference while battling opposing forces and poverty. Ferra is the campaign manager at Women and Girls Lead. “We want to connect directly with students and engage them in a conversation about the power of media,” Ferra Sally Ma said. “Hopefully we inspire girls to become units of change in their own Locsi Ferra from Women and Girls Lead, a public campaign aiming to educate women and girls about challenges of the 21st century, presented at UNICEF club on Oct. 26. communities.”

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The school’s counseling department recently created a social media profile to keep students updated about counseling news and events. Counselors Candace Boran and Maria Aguirre created a Twitter account for students to get information without religiously checking their School Loop accounts. Although the account was started by and is updated by counselors, their idea was proposed by a student. “I was asking a student if they read something I had announced on School Loop,” Aguirre said. “She said we should have a Twitter account because students are always checking that on their phones.” Because students have access to social media via phones and computers, this medium will be a more effective way of alerting students to events, college information and deadlines. “We have only posted a few things so far and it is supposed to be another means of getting information to students,” Boran said. Although the account only had 10 followers as of Nov. 1, the counseling department considers it a success. — Samantha Wilcox

Lowell High School

Artistic students liven up SF libraries with new card designs

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By Elena Bernick ext year, when you spot the new city library card designs, know that you may also have spotted one of the artists in the hallways of school. Juniors Lori Chinn and Yu Ling Wu were finalists for the San Francisco Library Card Contest, a competition that gives artists an opportunity to submit illustrations for next years’ library cards. After weeks of online voting, Chinn’s drawing won with 444 votes, and Wu’s placed second, following with 276 votes. Chinn’s, as the high school category winner, will have her design featured on library cards beginning in 2013. Chinn considers the selection to be an honor but believes the creative experience the most valuable. “These contests are always fun for me,” Chinn said. “It’s not about winning, it’s more about doing different art things.” The art contest was hosted by the San Francisco Public Library and the Mayor’s Office. There were five age categories for artists: 2nd grade and under, 3rd – 5th grades, middle school, high school and adult. “I like drawing and my art teacher said it would be good for me to apply,” Chinn said. For Wu, the contest provided a perfect opportunity to show her love of the library. “I’m a library nerd,” Wu said. “When I saw the library cards come out a couple of years ago, I wanted to make my own.” Chinn had heard about the contest from her art teacher, and she passed the information on to Wu. Last year, Chinn won an art competition, the Heroes and Hearts contest, where her design was chosen to be painted on a heart that would be displayed around the city (See “Young Artist Opens Up Her Heart,” The Lowell, Feb. 2012). The heart, which is displayed in a trophy case in the first floor hallway, shows a group of colorfully designed hands reaching for one another. As a seasoned artist, Chinn would like to continue her art career in the future. “I want to go to an art college,” Chinn said. Both finalists drew on their affection for books to create their submissions. The winning illustration depicts a shining sun radiating off the pages of an open book. “I wanted to make it simple but colorful,” Chinn said. “Books make me happy, that’s why I put the sun.” Wu agreed, citing a life-long love of reading as

courtesy of lori chinn

COURTESY OF YU LING WU

her inspiration for the design. “I used to stay up late and read books under the covers,” Wu said. “I wanted to translate that to a library card.” Wu’s illustration includes a child shining a flashlight on a plethora of books, with images from the stories coming off the pages. Wu says she wanted her illustration to have “a nostalgic feel,” so she tried to channel her inner child. “I listened to a lot of ‘90s music,” Wu said. “I tried to be in the mindset of when I was a kid.” Chinn works best when she is in the creative zone. “I just have to have this feeling that I want to draw,” Chinn said. “That’s when I can think of ideas.” Be sure to keep an eye out for a brilliant sun radiating off the library cards next year!

arts


November 9, 2012

The Lowell

CAMPUS

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Fisherman brings the big blue to the classroom By Whitney C. Lim and Celena Chang

and other crustaceans living along coasts, causing decreases in next forty years!” he said in the Oct. 27 email. Small family-owned fishing operations will soon be bought ake a wild guess — how many fish live in the population of the whole food chain that depends on them, thus ocean? Trick question: no one knows! So if we do not fewer fish for fishermen and consumers — the “ripple effect,” as up by commercial companies like McDonalds, ending fisherknow the total population of fish, how do we know if Hudson called it. “We have no way to fight ocean acidification,” men’s way of life and taking away thousands of jobs, according he stated in an email on Oct. 26. to Hudson. He believes that large corporations do not we are overfishing? “We know it’s coming and we care as much about the fish and environment as small Commercial fisherman know it’s going to be bad. We businesses do. “I offer ‘greed by some who just don’t Mike Hudson and educacan slow it down by reducing care about the rest of us’ as the greatest threat to our tional specialist Peter Winch our carbon output, but it looks fish and fisheries,” Hudson said in the Oct. 26 email. explored this issue and othlike we can’t stop it.” Returning to the topic of overfishing, Hudson ers when they visited sciHudson believes “buffer used the example of salmon, pointing out that only ence teacher Kathy Melvin’s zones” around agricultural approximately 5 percent of all wild salmon that marine and environmental fields near streams should existed a hundred years ago remain today. “That’s sciences classes on Nov. 1 be “absolute no-brainers” to a scary low number,” he said in the Oct. 26 email. as part of the Fishermen in prevent accidental pesticide Part of the problem is that no one is taking care the Classroom program. The overspray. “Yet both chemical of the oceans, because no one owns them. “Overprogram provides opportucompanies and farmers do not fishing is a global tragedy of the commons,” Melvin nities for teachers and their support these,” he said in the said. “We take and take and don’t consider how fast students to learn about the Oct. 27 email. “We fight hard for the fish reproduce. Now we are starting to catch them before history and current day relthe survival of our salmon and they have the chance to reproduce.” That leads to a decrease in evance of fishing in nearby we win almost all the lawsuits population, which could ultimately mean extinction for many Pacific waters. we are forced to file in the pro- different species of fish. Their presentation incess.” But these To really understand the cluded video clips and Powprocesses take depth of the overfishing proberPoint presentations that time, and in that lem, Melvin says we must described Hudson’s daily time, fish die. reflect on what we do and lifestyle. He has been a fishWe have no way to Cate Stern Another conwhy. “Most people don’t think erman for fifteen years, is the Educational specialist Peter Winch demonstrates the workings fight ocean acidifi- about their daily actions,” she cern of Hudson’s owner of Hudson Fish and is of a crab trap to environmental science class. is sea level rise. “They don’t think about involved in four other fishcation. We know it’s said. “We already ditheir food and where it came ing organizations. “Being a fisherman isn’t just going out and fishing,” Winch said. “There vert too much water from the Delta,” he stated in coming and we know from.” an email on Oct. 27. “If we want to keep healthy Now, take a more educated are lots of challenges for the modern day fisherman.” it’s going to be bad.” guess at the number of fish One of those challenges is the fact that scientists are still populations of fish…that live in our Delta, we living in the ocean. Rememlearning about the ocean. “We know about the surface of Mars need to leave way more water in the system than more than we know about what’s underneath the surface of our we do today and curtail diversions by around Mike Hudson, ber, the fish population is fifty percent.” ocean,” Hudson said. commercial fisherman decreasing. Hudson stated in Hudson thinks we have two choices to control the Oct. 27 email, “My hope is Hudson mentioned several “important issues that greatly that I can get some of the next affect our fisheries today, and/or will have great impacts soon” sea level rise at this point: one, cut most of the before his presentations at Lowell. One major threat is the acidi- agricultural production in order to protect rivers and fish or generation of upcoming scientists excited to work on problems fication of oceans. The pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers seri- two, let the waters and everything that live in them die. “We’re such as this, and maybe some kid from Lowell will become the ously harm the growth and development of krill, shrimp, crabs expecting a sea level rise of around eighteen inches over the scientist with the solution.”

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New ASL policies rally for unity among teams By Joey Wong and Sheyda Zebarjadian

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owell’s rallies come to life with spirit of the ASL. This year, Cheer, of the Athletic Spirit League has been the driving force behind changes to the standards of performance at school events. The ASL is a league of Lowell teams, including Cheer, Song and Senior Letter, which performs during rallies and school events to garner school spirit and support sports teams. The new requirements include uniform dress codes, as well as attendance of three-fifths of the team at all performances. The teams also are required to be tested on their cheers before the games by the Cheer captains. The Cheer team is in charge of implementing the new rules. In previous years, there weren’t as many requirements for ASL, but changes have been made this year in order to improve overall performance. “I think they’ve been trying to just get ASL teams more uniform this year,” varsity Song cocaptain senior Adriana Millar, who is also an Editor-in-chief of The Lowell, said. While most members of the ASL believe unifying the teams is beneficial, they are concerned about how some of these restrictions influence their team. “Since we only have five girls on our varsity team, the three-fifths rule wouldn’t allow us to cheer if just three people were absent,” Millar said. “For our team, we don’t have a coach to give us letters to get out of class, so it can also be hard to make it to games on time.” Senior Letter, with seven members on the team, also is concerned about attendance requirements. “Sometimes not a lot of people

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can make it, which can be stressful for the whole group,” Senior Letter member senior Stephanie Wu said. Team uniforms are required to be consistent. “The whole entire team has to look the same during the whole game,” Cheer co-captain senior Noe Manley said. “We want to look good for the fans, because we know how much these things affect our overall performance.” The issue of JV Song’s non-matching jackets arose at the Battle of the Birds game on Oct. 26. According to Millar, the varsity Song team told their JV team that any plain black jacket was acceptable, but Cheer said that everyone’s jacket should be the same. Cheer, however, ended up permitting the use of the jackets for the night. “Uniforms are already really expensive and now they also want people to match jackets; it just makes it difficult,” varsity Song member senior Laura Horsley, said. The new requirements allow the three ASL divisions to practice together a few ADRIANA MILLaR, days before games to ASL member increase efficiency and pro duc t iv it y. “When we’re making signs for Battle of the Birds, it’s a lot easier to get everything done when we’re all working together,” Cheer cocaptain senior Kiki Cooney said. “The purpose is to make sure everyone is together so we look good, since we’re all separate teams.” The new requirements have ushered in improvements within the ASL. “I’ve noticed that not only Song and Senior Letter are more dedicated, but that my team is as well,” Manley said. “We definitely look more together now.” Other ASL members agree. “I think the rules will definitely improve our performance and make Lowell look better,” Wu said.

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Freshmen explore big futures at career fair

“ Since we only have five

girls on our varsity team, the three-fifths rule wouldn’t allow us to cheer if just three people were absent.”

all photos by Cate Stern

On Tuesday Oct. 12, 9th graders who opted not to take the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test, or the PSAT, were required to attend the school’s second annual freshmen career fair as a requirement for Plan Ahead (See “School waits for district go-ahead on pilot course” on www.thelowell.org). Freshmen listened to information from professionals in various careers, including policemen, lawyers, and military members.


4 The Lowell

November 9, 2012

NEWS

sally ma

Lowell Drama’s fall production of the 1936 play You Can’t Take it with You played drew applause in the Carol Channing Theater from October 25-28. Clockwise from top: (Top) Senior Quinn Francis and junior Mica Jarmel-Scneider make a toast. (Right) Junior Jakob Hofso poses for a portrait. (Bottom Right) Sophomore Jackson Murphy bends down for a kiss from junior Yu Ling Wu. (Bottom Left) Junior Ilya Verzhbinsky pins down junior Luciano Chan. (Left center) The Sycamore family welcomes Jarmel-Scneider into their home.

Huimin zhang

Cate stern

Huimin zhang

Cate stern


November 9, 2012

The Lowell

NEWS

Grades due early, finals shorter

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October Corrections

By KT Kelly

•In the article “Baseballer sings: ‘Take me back to the weightroom!’” on page 12, baseball tryouts begin Jan. 28, 2013; Fall baseball and any weightlifting is strictly voluntary; and Tom Ledda was a volunteer coach and never the head coach. •In the article “Girls’ FS Volleyball has high hopes with new team” on page 11, Jacky Su’s name was misspelled.

To provide teachers with more time to grade, a shortened he district has changed the deadline for final time frame for each finals block had been proposed and apsemester grades, causing concern for some educators. proved by the UBC for the spring semester last year. This year, Now teachers must factor doing grades into their early the district implemented this schedule for the fall semester as well, according to Melvin. “The justification to make finals holiday preparations. The Union Building Committee noted during the beginning shorter is to take pressure off of teachers. The problem is that of the second week of the fall semester that the San Francisco many teachers counted on a certain amount of time for their Unified School District had changed the due date for final finals,” Melvin said. Shorter finals cause a problem for the math department grades to the Friday before winter break instead of during the first week of the spring semester in January. “In prior years we because of their cumulative tests, and for Advanced Placement classes, which usually use the allotted had an agreement with the administratime to give a full released AP exam. tion that grades were due three workEnglish teachers are concerned ing days after the six-week or semester The problem is that Some that students’ written assignments will grading period,” science teacher and UBC member Kathy Melvin said. “The many teachers counted not be given the attention they need. “Since the semester grades are due administration has always been supon a certain amount of before we leave for break, the amount portive of the teachers. Even when a writing we can evaluate decreases,” lot of other high schools changed their time for their finals.” of English department head Bryan Ritter dates, our administration kept our due said. “I no longer give essay exams for date.” Other SFUSD schools changed KATHY MELVIN, finals because it’s impossible to grade their grading period to be due before science teacher and UBC member them all within one week.” winter break last year, but Lowell had Some teachers are adapting to the maintained it to provide more time to complete grades. While other high schools have year-long change. “It’s always stressful when you realize there are fewer classes, Lowell provides semester-long classes, which has been and fewer days to do your work,” Ritter said. “To be proactive, one of the reasons that the deadline has been after winter break. I’ve modified my evaluations to adapt to this change. I look The district made this decision for two reasons: to unify all forward to spending quality time with my family over break. I of the public schools in San Francisco under one date, and for will enjoy reading for pleasure.” However, other teachers think that the SFUSD is being unstudents who need their transcripts to apply for colleges and scholarships, according to Melvin. However, she is skeptical reasonable. “I think it’s one more example of the failure of the about how many students this actually applies to. “I have never district to recognize the time necessary to successfully evalubeen aware of a problem with a student getting their transcript ate a student’s performance,” Advanced Placement Economics in time for a college for the past 16 years, including when the teacher Jim Spellicy. “Do they think essays can be graded on a Scantron?” grading period ended in mid-January,” Melvin said.

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Earthbench

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kara scherer

Science teacher Erin Bird’s brother Brennan Bird works to build an earth bench with junior Andrew Kennedy.

History teacher scores musical tix By Andrew Pearce and Rayming Liang

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PHOTO COURTESY OF SFPLAYHOUSE.ORG

The poster for “Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson” at the SF Playhouse, which some students from Advanced Placement U.S. History and American Democracy teacher Steve Schmidt’s classes attended voluntarily on Nov. 6. The play is a historical rock musical about Andrew Jackson’s presidency.

ndy’s Back and he’s ready to ROCK!” according to the San Francisco Playhouse’s publicity department. Advanced Placement U.S. History and American Democracy teacher, Steve Schmidt offered his students discounted tickets to a rock musical intertwined with U.S. History. Schmidt took interested students from all of his classes to a showing of the play “Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson” on Nov. 6 at the San Francisco Playhouse.   Discounted tickets were sold at $10 per ticket, rather than the normal prices of $30 to $75, according to Schmidt.   Students were seated in the second through sixth rows of the orchestra section. Schmidt obtained the tickets because he has season tickets. “The SF Playhouse sent out an email offering complimentary tickets for me and discounted tickets for my students,” Schmidt said.   Schmidt was very passionate and enthusiastic about the play, which he had previously seen, and he wanted his students to experience it.   “I first saw ‘Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson’ on Broadway in December 2010 and loved it!” Schmidt said. His AP U.S. His-

the crossword Across 1 Pintos, e.g. 6 “Gallipoli” conflict, briefly 9 TTYL 12 Exclusive 13 A stud’s locale 14 Red icon on a video camera, for short 15 Some heavy reconnaissance equipment? 17 A hobbit’s favorite pub offering 18 Hang on to 19 Men who work at home? 20 An addendum’s addendum, in a letter

23 Unyielding 25 A big catch? 29 Black gold 30 Actress Watts 33 Senseless? 37 White ___ 38 British actor Hardy 39 Ocean liner? 42 Swine feed 44 Mine find 45 Take a break? 50 Driving hazard 51 Fenced-in area 52 Sleep disorder 53 60’s acid 54 In addition 55 “Ni-i-ice!”

Schmidt considered the play to tory students finished studying Andrew Jackson the week of Oct. 22, two weeks be quite persuasive. “The show has before the play, according to Schmidt. made me reconsider some of my opinAs of Nov. 6, students were waiting in ions about Andrew Jackson,” Schmidt anticipation for the play with excitement. said.  “Generally, I’m not President Jack“I think it’s an amazing opportunity son’s biggest fan, but the way his story is because it will give us more insight and portrayed on stage has made him seem more perspective because we get to see more worthy of sympathy.” it performed rather than read about it Despite not currently studying the in a textbook,” APUSH student junior subjects covered in the play, seniors in Schmidt’s Miriam Myers said. American I think it’s an amazing “ B l o o d y, Democracy Bloody Andrew were opportunity because we classes st i l l e ager Jackson” is a historical rock to s ee the get to see it performed play. “All Broadway murather than read about seniors have sical about the controversial already takit in a textbook.” en U.S. hispresidency of Andrew Jacktory classes MIRIAM MYERS, b e caus e it son, who foundjunior was a junior ed the demoyear requirecratic party and drove the Indians west, according to the ment, so it’s nice to have an entertaining San Francisco Playhouse website (www. recap of the era,” senior Mollee Chu said. Schmidt wanted his students to take sfplayhouse.org). Schmidt’s students were given a preview into what they something away from the play, as well as would be watching. “I’ve already had the enjoy it. “I hope that my students will first taste (of the play) because Schmidt become more excited about studying played the soundtrack in class,” Myers history and appreciate the varying viewsaid, about a week before seeing the play. points of historic analysis,” Schmidt said.

Crossword courtesy of seniors Francesco Trogu and Grant Paul.

Down 1 “___ Canto,” by Ann Patchett 2 QB Manning 3 Gov’t bailout recipient 4 Math degree? 5 Actor Rogen 6 Affluence 7 Roam 8 Annoy 9 Common studying technique 10 User review website 11 Perfect scores 16 Chuck 19 Emasculate 20 Nightgown alternative 21 Kennel youngster 22 “FML” equivalent

24 Wedding band 26 Mix 27 Bread spread 28 Sulk 31 “WOW,” e.g. 32 “Deep Blue” creator, for short 34 Lend an ear 35 Treasure ___ 36 Argon’s cousin 39 Earth 40 Flight paths 41 Requirement 43 Palms, sometimes 45 Hot spot 46 The City 47 United 48 Itty-bitty 49 “L-O-V-E” singer

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The Lowell

November 9, 2012

Trick or tWEET

NEWS

7

All photos by Huimin Zhang

Despite coinciding with the San Francisco Giants Parade celebrating their World Series victory, the Student Body Council’s Halloween rally drew a substantial crowd and many eager participants in activities such as donut-eating. (Clockwise from top) SBC events coordinator senior Hiromi Fujita (dressed as PSY, the Korean musician responsible for “Gangnam Style”) throws candy to students in the courtyard. (Bottom right) Seniors Vicky Guan and Marissa Choy strike a cute pose as they show off their sushi costumes. (Bottom left) Seniors SBC elections commissioner Enders Ng and Lin hold the pole for the donut-on-a-stick game. (Middle left) Seniors SBC vice president Benny Lin, Jacob Blumenfeld and sophomore Jeffrey Lee pose in their cereal mascot costumes.


8 NEWS

Lowell High School

November 9, 2012

Blaze delays students in a.m. New approach to

inputting course selection info eases workload

gavin li

The Squat & Gobble cafe caught on fire on Oct. 12, disrupting bus traffic at the West Portal MUNI station.

From COURSE SELECTION on Page 1 takes the entire office about three to five days to compute,” he said. “Because it’s manual, it’s easy to make mistakes, and it’s slow.” Although the online process is much faster, students still had to fill out paper course selection sheets. “You still turn in the paper forms as a backup in case we have to make corrections,” Yi said. The PTSA funded and supported the project, according to Yi. “The website is $150 per month, plus any overages,” Harlev said. “Plus another $16 per year for the domain.” However, the website will only be up during the course selection season, not year-round, according to Harlev. A version of this story first appeared on www.thelowell.org

Advocates hope to restore chess club to former glory

From CHESS on Page 1 for the purpose of “improving their game and preparing for tournament play.” According to their website (www.milibrary.org), the Mechanics Institute “is an historic membership library, cultural event center, and chess club that was founded in 1854 to serve the vocational needs of out-of-work gold miners.” According to Fahey, DeFirmian is “dedicated to putting Lowell back on the national chess map” and making Lowell’s chess team as strong as it once was. Fahey heard of DeFirmian’s reputation from retired Lowell science teacher and former Lowell chess coach Peter Dahl. Several former Lowell Chess Team members from the 1980s made contributions to help rebuild this year’s team. Some of the money was

specifically used to purchase chess clocks, Fahey said. “It’s been a really rich tradition, Lowell and the Mechanics Institute have been working together probably since the 19th century,” Fahey said. “It’s very exciting; I feel so privileged to have Peter Dahl and DeFirmian as pals.” Lau also appreciates DeFirmian’s support for the club. “He’s been very nice to us and teaches us some things about the game that he thinks are important,” Lau said. Fahey said that the club currently has some strong juniors and a few strong freshmen, but he is hoping more underclassmen, particularly females, will join and help diversify the team. If you are interested in capturing some kings and queens, join chess club after school every Friday in Room 114.

gavin li

Chess grandmaster Nick DeFirmian makes his next move in a game against senior Allen Chin.

Wrong attendance Students catch ‘orange fever’ records may put funding, school schedule at risk From ATTENDANCE on Page 1 consequences involved if the audit found enough mistakes.” Accurate attendance records are necessary when questions of cutting or grades arise, as in the case of a family who filed an appeal to review a student’s grades after they felt the district had not notified the parents sufficiently about their student’s attendance (See “Board hears parent challenge of grades,” The Lowell, Dec. 2008). Yi stressed that this check-in was internal, but caution should be employed.  “If we correct and avoid mistakes, then it will not show on our records,” he said.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, 4,153 students cut school on Oct. 31 to attend the Giants parade, costing the school district $158,935 in funding.

kara scherer


The Lowell

November 9, 2012

PROFILES

9

Creative coach puts down bat to pick up pen By Sam Tick-Raker

sense of humor. He explained that the job is its. Outs. Shouts. Runs. stress-free as well with, “I lucked out.” Though DeAndreis and his main character, Cheers. Roasted peanuts. Chewing gum. Chewing tobacco. Caps with Horton, share the same occupation, the book logos. All these words describe the game of is not completely autobiographical. Horton has difficult exbaseball. Now you periences as a can add creative sub, while Dewriting to that list. Andreis himself Emil DeAndreis, enjoys talking class of ’04 alumnus, with students current substitute about a plethora teacher and part of topics includof Lowell baseball ing baseball, team’s coaching staff, music, college is stepping up to the and life. plate and publishDeAndreis ing a book with Blue has an easier Cubicle Press. “The time in the book is a collection classroom than of tales in which the t h e s c e n ar i o protagonist, a substihe created for tute teacher named Horton. He Horton — a nonesuses humor in sential, downtrodthe novel. “The den stooge — is condifficult experitinually foiled by the ences are more various goings on entertaining on of his occupation,” a comedic levDeAndreis said. el,” he said. “It is Titled Beyond better reading. Folly, Misadventures The bad ones in Substitute Teachare funnier.” ing, the book will be Photo Courtesy of Emil Deandreis DeAndreis out next September Coach and substitute teacher Emil DeAndreis reflects hopes that his in many stores across on his favorite authors students read America, including his novel beCity Lights bookstore in San Francisco and the online store, cause, though the stories are fictional, he believes that Lowellites will enjoy learning about Amazon (www.amazon.com.) Despite his protagonist’s misadventures, the life of an imaginary substitute teacher. “I DeAndreis finds being around youth is re- think students will be able to relate to these freshing and he said he enjoys the students’ stories, having experienced the thrill of having

H

a sub,” he said jokingly. of Hawaii at Hilo to play baseball, majoring in Although he loves to sub at Lowell, he also Creative Writing and Communications. “Acasubstitutes at various other middle schools demic writing — with its theses and citations and high schools. “Sometimes I walk the halls and general academic tyranny — weaned me of Lowell and slap hands with my players and off of all creative endeavors,” DeAndreis said of forget that I’m twenty-six, not sixteen,” he said.  his rough inning with writing. “It took a kind “Lowell was very good to me.  It still is.” and manipulative professor to sit me down Selling a novel is a story in itself — and in college and tell me I should give writing rejection letters are hard to accept. But De- another shot.” Andreis has a mentality that makes it easier Fortunately DeAndreis took the advice. for him to deal with them. For one magazine And he found some tricks of the trade to in particular, Blue Cubicle Press, all the stories help his discipline, like music. “I like to have were well received by the editors, but the maga- something on in the background, something zine sent a rejection slip anyway, stating that non-distracting, something that makes you the stories were too short for their magazine have your own thoughts,” he said. “Bach, Chobut might work better as a novel. “It is impor- pin, Mahler — the dark, heavy-hitting OG’s tant to put yourself in the (Original Gangsters) perspective of the people of it all.” doing the rejections; they To learn and read If I can continue to more are getting hundreds of about DeAnsubmissions and one isdo [coach and write] dreis’s publications sue only features three or and his new book and pay the bills, then visit his author page four stories,” DeAndreis said. “You just have to be on Facebook (www. sign me up.” realistic. You can’t take it facebook.com). Emil DeAndreis, personally; it does not When DeAndreis substitute teacher and mean your writing is bad. is not at his computer Rejections are not a big typing ferociously, he baseball coach deal to me.” is out at the field in his However his work fourth season coachdid not go unappreciated for long. DeAndreis ing, giving pointers to Cardinal players. “I love received the Editor’s Choice Award from Bam- these guys I coach.  They keep me young, keep boo Ridge, a magazine in Hawaii at the end of me on my toes, keep me close to the game,” 2010, which gave him hope. “It felt validating,” he said.  “I value highly my time with them he said. “I had been writing for a year or year and hope that that sentiment is mutual; if I and a half with just a bunch of rejections. It was have some positive impact on them, be it as encouraging.” However it was the early rejec- a pitcher, a baseball player, or a person, then tions that sparked his inspiration to write a I am happy.” collection of Horton stories eight months ago. DeAndreis has hit one out of the park with DeAndreis had been interested in creative this novel. “Coaching and writing work well writing since elementary school. After gradu- for me,” he said.  “If I can continue to do that ating high school, he attended the University and pay the bills, then sign me up.”

I


ishingly high number, but not compared to China or South struggle and the resulting distraction becomes more signifiKorea, where there is an estimated 30 percent addiction rate. cant than a rich learning experience. People all over the world, and teenagers in particular have a IAD is more harmful than one might think. According to By Spencer Thirtyacre a scientific online research website, PLoS One (www.plosone. OUR WEEKEND is winding down and suddenly steadily growing risk for addiction. In fact teenagers are facing a major challenge when dealing org), brain scans of several people diagnosed with Internet you remember your project that was assigned a while back. You had paid little attention as the distant dead- with the World Wide Web. A 2011 study found that 1 in 25 addiction showed similar patterns to those of alcohol or coline seemed a lifetime away. Well, that time slipped by and students have problematic Internet usage, according to the caine addicts. The scans revealed disrupted nerve fibers that now it is 10 p.m. the night before that “distant” due date. Your May 20, 2011 FOX News article, “How Many Teens Have affect emotions, decision-making and self-control. All this permanent damage, and for what? So you can heart races as you scramble to open up a Word document and ‘Internet Addiction?’” (www.foxnews.com). This means that hastily type up a report that reflects your rush. What causes their online surfing has become so bad it affects their relation- spend countless hours harvesting crops on a virtual farm? ships and even overall lives, as students Believe it or not, there was a the time to evaporate like water in a desert? The Internet. time when we went outside to We can’t ignore that the Internet plays a major role in that tested positive for problematic use have fun. Remember those hot our lives. The cyberspace is indisputably one of the greatest were found to be more likely to get in summer days (that were few tools in our technological arsenal: you can watch Star Wars, physical fights, suffer from depression, Brain scans of several and far between in San Francommunicate with your BFF and search for a seemingly and have higher rates of drug use. people diagnosed with Now with smart phones becoming cisco) when kids would go to infinite mass of information. Even so, the Internet can be park, the beach or just hang too tempting — a disadvantage when trying to get through more and more popular, the Internet Internet addiction showed the can be accessed on the go, adding to out in a backyard? That has a gigabyte of homework. While the Internet is very useful for research, looking the 17 hours per week young people similar patterns to those of been replaced by slaughtering zombies in a dim room while up formulas and uploading photos, it can act as a black hole spend online, according to the Octoalcohol or cocaine addicts. your brain rots, until you turn when attempting to complete assignments, sucking you in. ber 24, 2012 MSN article “Teenagers into the very zombies you are The culprits are the massive number of enticing websites ‘spend more time online.’” Consultant killing. German neuroscientist on the Internet. From YouTube to Facebook, the traps of psychiatrist for Imperial College, Dr. Henrietta Bowden Jones states that hardcore gamers are Dr. Manfred Spitzer stated that children who grow up spendprocrastination are everywhere. With all these distractions, no wonder students are surf- especially susceptible to addiction, according to the January ing too much time on the computer are subject to an irreing the web to the point of possible addiction. The American 12 CBS News article, “Internet addiction changes the brain versible stunting of brain development, according to global Psychiatric Society is adding “Internet Addiction Disorder” similar to cocaine: Study” (www.cbsnews.com). This makes news source Worldcrunch’s September 12 article, “Does the (IAD) to the newest edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Man- smart phones a contributing factor due to the hundreds Internet make you dumb?” (www.worldcrunch.com). of thousands of gaming applications If students continue to succumb to the constant distracual of Mental Disorders, according that can be downloaded and played tions the Internet provides, our society’s cultural growth will to the Oct. 2 web article “Inter-nuts! anywhere for hours on end. grind to a halt. We will all become obsessed with winning Web addiction new psych illness” The very nature of the anytime, Still, gamers are not the only ones online competitions, accomplishments that mean little in real in the New York Post (www.nypost. com). Since 1995 IAD had been Internet is leading to that are at risk of addiction. The very life, and we will lose focus on the things that really matter: nature of the Internet is leading to a family, friends and happiness. disputed as to its legitimacy as a a general decline in general decline in wisdom. “[The InI took a self-test at Net Addiction, a website dedicated to medical condition, but now will be ternet], with its constant distractions helping those with Internet addiction (www.netaddiction. an officially recognized disorder. wisdom. and interruptions, is turning us into com). It is one of those self-help quizzes which is probAccording to the Internet World scattered and superficial thinkers,” ably fairly inaccurate as a measurement, but is interesting Stats website (www.internetworldstats.com), the United States ranks second after China in the author Nicholas Carr stated in a June 7, 2010 article, “Does nonetheless. I received a score of 34 out of 100, which put number of Internet users, with over 245 million people — the Internet Make You Smart or Stupid, Thoughtful or For- me in the “average Internet user” category. Thankfully I am 78 percent — of the US population constantly clicking the getful?” published in engineering magazine IEEE Spectrum relatively safe from addiction. Students can test themselves mouse. Studies show an estimated one in eight Americans (spectrum.ieee.org). Students are losing focus on their work, at this website to see if they are truly the Internet fiends their suffers from Internet addiction, according to the technology and are watching their precious time evaporate before their friends say they are. But take it only after that homework website Anson Alex (www.ansonalex.com). This is an aston- very eyes. Therefore the ever-important deadlines become a project is finished!

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ILLUSTRATIONS BY KIMBERLY LI


Varsity football takes down Washington after a two-year drought.

Lowell High School November 9, 2012

Page 11

Girls’ varsity volleyball bonds over season By Kai Matsumoto-Hines

ters,” junior outside hitter Katie Hwang he girls’ varsity volleyball said. “During practice, coach Steven is team continues to assert their constantly integrating new plays and dominance in the Academic combos but at the same time making Athletic Association league, guarantee- sure our basic defense and offense stays ing themselves a spot in the champion- consistent.” The Lady Cardinals soared together ships. The varsity playoffs took place Nov. this season and became a “flying V” on 6 and the AAA varsity volleyball cham- the court. “I really and truly see them pionship game was on Nov. 8. Check as family,” Hwang said. “We bicker, we The Lowell website (www.thelowell.org) cry, we laugh, and we complain to no end just as real sisters would. When you for results. The team worked on closing every know that you can always rely on your vulnerability they had in order to teammate, you play more confidently and without the take the team fear of makto a whole new level of comI think the wins are ing mistakes. Those two petitiveness. “I just as important as hours I spend think the wins them durare just as imthe losses because we with ing practice are portant as the learn from both, and the best part of losses because day for me we learn from as a result become bet- the hands down.” both, and as a All the hard result become ter players.” work paid off in better players,” AMORELLE APPLIN, the end when junior middle junior middle hitter the girls defeathitter Amorelle ed their comApp l i n s a i d . “Our team worked on consistency in petitors. “My favorite part of the year order to become stronger. I have noticed was our game against Balboa,” junior a pattern where we will be up 10 points setter Gianna Braganza said. “Everyone and then get into a lull and give the was focused and every one of us conother team motivation. Even though we tributed to the win, whether we were eventually end up winning, it is impor- playing or cheering at the top of our tant for us to be consistent throughout lungs on the bench.” They defeated the Balboa Buccaneers on Sept. 21 with 3-0. each game.” Applin enjoyed the season. “There As the team aimed for consistency, they also employed new tactics to catch are so  many memorable moments of the opposing team off-guard. “At the awesome volleyball, from that one amazstart of a game, we kept it simple but as ing dig from Melissa or that beautiful kill the game progressed, we tried to switch from Eileen, that great block from Jaela, it up a bit and run interesting plays to that ace from Emily or that textbook with our middles and right-side hit- set from Gianna,” she said.

T

I

Gavin Li

Junior middle hitter Amorelle Applin and junior setter Gianna Braganza reach for the ball on Sept. 21.

Tennis takes 1st place over Wash in Champs

Athlete of the Month:

Aaron Moye

By Ray Lang

S

By Elazar Chertow

te Ca n

r Ste

Watch any Lowell boys’ varsity soccer game, and one player stands out: junior midfielder Aaron Moye. Moye’s electrifying speed and finesse with the ball keep him in the thick of every game, whether he is scoring on his own, assisting his teammates, or hustling on the defensive end. Moye, who has started or played on varsity for the last three seasons, has been among the leaders in scoring and assists every year. Moye has stepped up as an upperclassman. “We don’t quite have a star this year, but I feel that everyone is stepping up right now,” Moye said. As an individual, Moye has contributed both on and off the field, acting as a leader to younger players. “On the field he’s a great leader by controlling the ball, pace of play, and making good decisions,” sophomore Danny Zander said. His attitude also makes him well-liked among the team. “He’s very relaxed and composed on the field,” junior Arbel Efraty said. Despite snapping their 48 game win streak to Mission on Oct. 18th, Moye and the whole team are excited to bring home a trophy. “I think we have a good chance, and the streak was going to end sometime,” Moye said.

In addition to his impressive regular season play, Moye’s goal-scoring seems only to improve in crucial playoff matches. In both the 2010 and 2011 seasons, Moye scored a goal in both championship games. In addition, he scored three goals against Washington in an 8-3 victory on Oct. 31 to help Lowell advance to the league final against Mission. However, during the Nov. 2 championship game against Mission, Moye left at the end of the first half with a PCL injury, leaving the Cards without one of their best scorers. Despite this loss, the Cardinals still tied the Bears 1-1 after four overtimes, becoming co-champs.

oaring past the Washington Eagles last week in the AAA Finals, the Lowell girls’ tennis team beat Washington 5-2 at the championship game on Nov. 3. Lowell won all but one singles and one doubles match, establishing them as league champions and the city’s best. Sometimes bigger isn’t always better. That was definitely the case this season for the girls’ varsity tennis team which lost close to 10 members last year. Last year’s 35-player team has now been reduced to 24, but what the team lacks in number, it more than makes up for in skill and bonds. “Everyone agrees that we’re tighter this year because the team is smaller,” senior varsity player Kitty Kwan said. “We lost quite a few seniors so everyone’s been stepping up their game to take on the new positions. Our top three players are all sophomores.” Sophomore Sydney Lee also feels the effects of the smaller team. “We’re definitely closer,” she said. “We’re like a family now. The underclassmen look up to [the seniors] and they’re kind of our role models.” The seniors are leaders on and off the courts. This year, a large number of the 10

players that played in the championship matches are sophomores. Three of the four varsity singles matches are played by sophomores Sopiko Kharazde, Sabrina On and Ashley Duong, and one match by See TENNIS on Page 12

Cate SterN

Sopiko Kharadze prepares to slam a volley into the net during a 7-0 victory over Balboa on Sept. 26.


12 SPORTS

November 9, 2012

Lowell High School

Statue of Lowell grad erected Varsity tennis dominates AAA at Petco Park, San Diego

From TENNIS on Page 11 senior Nancy Hong. The doubles were played by seniors Kitty Kwan, Nancy Hong, and Suzanne Tsai; junior Katie Lei; sophomore Sydney Lee; and freshman Camilia Kacimi. The Cardinals plan to take advantage of their strong doubles players this year. On Oct. 26, co-captains Hong and Kwan snagged first place in doubles, after the week-long AAA all-city tournament. But those are not the only changes that the team has undergone. New routines and drills have also been implemented. “Our practices are much more organized. We assigned certain drills to certain courts,” Kwan said. Each court focuses on a different aspect of the game: serving courts, volley courts, etc. In this way, players have a chance to hone their skills, improving strengths and overcoming weaknesses. Head coach Bryan Lee is confident of the team’s chemistry and the captains’ leadership. “They have been really welcoming and have come up with a lot of activities,” Lee said. During practice, the team bonds through games like Graveyard, Roller Coaster, and Around the World. “The only time we fight is with water balloons,” Kwan said. Nonetheless, it is apparent through their icebreaker games and group gatherings that the girls are close this year. And being a more tightly-knit team strengthens their athletic prowess on the courts. That isn’t to say that the Cardinals were not without rivals in their league. The Washington Eagles handed the Cardinals their only loss of the league season in a 5-2 rout on Oct. 17, putting the rest of the season into perspective. “They were really focused,” Lee said. “They outcompeted us. We need to play with a little more intensity. A lot of the matches could have gone either way. They have to play a little more defense. Even if you are hitting hard there’s a safe way of doing it, and we’re not doing it.” But according to the final scoreboard, they definitely changed up their game. The Lowell girls’ tennis team looks forward to competing in the CIF-USTA NorCal Team Tennis Championship tournament which will take place on Nov. 16.

By Luming Yuan

the best high school in San Francisco. Even though Lowell ost young children have an idol. But, was old, it was still a leading school and I’m sure that still holds true today.” one famous alumnus thinks otherwise. Coleman was a second baseman for the New York That famous Lowell grad is Jerry Coleman, someone who pursued his own vision in life. “I was myself. Yankees and a four-time World Series champion (1949, I didn’t want to be the next Babe Ruth; I didn’t want to be 1950, 1951, 1956). He won the Babe Ruth Award, which is the next Joe DiMaggio. I just wanted to be the best version given annually to a MLB player with the best performance postseason, in 1950. Coleman was also selected to play in of myself, whatever that was.” On Sept. 15, a monument was unveiled in Petco Park, the 1950 All-Star Game. Coleman spent 40 seasons as a radio announcer for San Diego, to honor multi-talented sportsman, former major league baseball player, Marine Corps aviator and the San Diego Padres and is the oldest active play-by-play announcer to date. In fall 2007, Coleplay-by-play radio announcer man was inducted into the National Jerry Coleman. It consists of a 7-foot, 5-inch tall statue and I was myself. I Radio Hall of Fame. He won the Ford C. Frick Award in 2005 which is given three panels behind it that ded i d n’ t w a n t t o to a broadcaster for major contributions scribe the three careers of his to baseball. life, namely “The Marine,” “The be the next Babe Lowell’s head varsity baseball coach Teammate” and “The Voice,” Ruth; I didn’t want John Donohue knows Coleman personaccording to the Sept. 15 UT ally. “Jerry Coleman has always been San Diego article “Monument to be the next Joe very nice and humble,” Donohue stated to Coleman more than a statue” in an e-mail on Oct. 24. “He spoke to (www.utsandiego.com). The DiMaggio.” me on my cell phone when Lowell was statue shows Coleman in his pilot uniform from the Korean JERRY COLEMAN, playing in the 2001 Lions Tournament War. “It’s a wonderful thing,” he Lowell alumnus ‘42 in San Diego and he arranged for us to arrive early. He got us to the right of said. “My five years in the navy home plate way before the game and said, ‘Oh, you don’t was my greatest accomplishment.” Coleman admits that he did not try hard enough aca- want to listen to me. Let me bring someone who can talk to demically in high school. “I just happened to be living in you.’  And he brings out Padre superstar, Tony Quinn, who the area close to Lowell and I got to go here,” Coleman spoke to the team for 22 minutes. Just an unselfish act.” Coleman expressed his appreciation for the people said. “My average was about a C, but I always got an A in gym. I played baseball and basketball. Baseball taught who support him everyday. “The two most important me that you can’t be as good as you want to be. It’s the things in my life are the people I love and the people that love me,” he said. toughest sport in the world.” Coleman also enjoys reading. “I like reading about Coleman revealed his hard-working personality when he said that he has a “never give up and never give in” at- things that I don’t know, and reading has taught me more titude. “I worked in the winter at a post office,” Coleman about the world around me,” Coleman said. “My favorite said. “I had a paper route. I had jobs all my life. I went to book is Gone with the Wind; I’ve read it three times.”

M

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The Lowell

November 9, 2012

SPORTS

13

Boys’ soccer loses forty-eight game undefeated streak against Mission, bounces back in playoffs

ALL PHOTOS BY CATE STERN

Clockwise From Top Left: senior forward Avery Fisher turns past a Mission defender. (Top Right) junior midfielder Will Slotterback drives forward with the ball. (Bottom Right) Fisher fights off a Mission player as he goes for the ball. (Bottom Left) senior midfielder Zach Weisneburger makes sure he is first to the ball as sophomore forward Luis Hernandez is poised to support the play. (Middle Left) junior midfielder Tony Torres goes one on one against a Mission defender as he dribbles down the flank.


14 SPORTS

November 9, 2012

Lowell High School

All Photos by Huimin Zhang

Senior wingback Paul Cho runs the ball downfield while avoiding a Washington tackle during a 44-14 victory over the Eagles on Oct. 26 at the annual Battle of the Birds.

Varsity football confident ahead of playoff game

By Ian James

According to Fujita, the team has been fter a slow start, the varsity improving for years now. “The 2013 seniors football team is picking up speed, cur- have really picked it up this year; we have lots rently ranking third in the Academic of guys showing great leadership,” he said. “Last Athletic Association league behind the Lincoln year some of our players weren’t fully focused but this year they’ve stepped up to the plate.” Mustangs and the Mission Bears. Frankel also stressed the importance of The team credits leadership by the upperthis uptake in form classmen. “Leadership is a to an improved focus huge factor with younger in the team. “The two players especially,” he said. preseason losses and “They are still learning the opening loss to how to perform at a varMission have opened sity level and it’s great players’ eyes to what they can focus on putting works and what in good performances doesn’t work at the and not having to worry varsity level,” senior as much about leading offensive lineman HiHIROMI FUJITA, on the field because that romi Fujita said. senior offensive lineman is something that should The Cards are still be added once you can a work in progress however, focusing on more consistent perfor- perform consistently.” The Cardinals are also full of praise for their mances. “We have positive and negative quarters; we even have positive and negative drives, offensive line, which is one of the strongest in so we are focusing on not having so many highs the league. It is packed with experience — six of and lows in our games,” senior quarterback Will the eight starting offensive linemen played for varsity since sophomore Frankel said. year. “The offensive line This group of Carhas really been picking dinals has experienced it up, without them we many ups and downs. would have no team,” juThe week after securnior linebacker Raymond ing their playoff spot Phelps said. “They have with a win in Battle of been really outstanding; the Birds the team sucwithout them I couldn’t cumbed to the Galileo do what I do so if I had to Lions 29-22, despite pick one strength in this leading at the end of team it would be the ofeach of the first three fensive line.” quarters. The CardiRaymond Phelps, One of the key playnals started strong junior linebacker ers for the team is senior and were up 16-7 by Micheal McC ar thy, a halftime. However the Lions came back fighting and scored 15 points three-year varsity veteran. In their first five league games alone McCarthy scored eleven in the last quarter to overtake the team Football coach Danny Chan has acknowl- touchdowns, a team-wide high. “Mikey is an edged his team has room for improvement, but all around excellent football player and a very is also confident about their chances. “We are strong athlete, which gives him a great advanin third place right now,” he said. “Mission and tage,” Phelps said. The Cards have also overcome multiple Lincoln are one and two right now and they are both very tough teams. We’d have to play very injuries this year: seniors Julian Manuel and well at the end to win it all. Yet if we work hard Alan Chen as well as juniors Noah Shaw and Daniel Fong have all been sidelined this year. and stay focused we stand a chance.”

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year some of our “ Last players weren’t fully focused but this year they’ve stepped up to the plate.”

These are only a couple of the players who have been sidelined and it has made it harder for the Cardinals to find their stride. “If I could change one thing about this season I would change the injuries we’ve had recently,” Chan said. “We hope to get those guys back to end the season together.” Overall this is one of the most promising

football teams Lowell has put together in several years and if they work together they have every chance of winning it all. “The team is all very dependent on each other, we play together and we all win together or lose together,” Phelps said. “We are a strong team all around, running and throwing every team is good at their position.”

Cards squash Wash in Battle of the Birds The varsity football team defeated the Washington Eagles 44-14 on Oct. 26 in one of its strongest performances this season. The Cards scored four of the first five touchdowns to earn a comfortable 30-7 halftime lead and maintained control for the majority of the game. One of the stars of the game was senior Micheal McCarthy, who scored two touchdowns and ran for 86 yards on the night. If that was not enough, he also filled in as a backup safety, where he added an interception to his already impressive performance. Other touchdowns were made by seniors Paul Cho and William Kim. Lowell had lost the last two league meetings with Washington, winning 23-8 in 2011 and 41-20 in 2010. With this win the team all but clinches a playoff spot while Washington will have to come away with a win against the undefeated Mission Bears to make the semi-finals. The Cardinals’ next game will be at 2 p.m. today at home against Lincoln.

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team is all “ Tveryh e dependent on

each other, we play together and we all win together or lose together.”

Senior wingback Micheal McCarthy soars over a Washington defender.


Lowell High School

PROFILES

November 9, 2012

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Lowell alumna returns to share love of literature

By Samantha Wilcox

filmmaking,” Yu said. “I have directed films that have made Yu credits her four years at Lowell as one of her strengths very year, many high school students across their way into the Mill Valley Film Festival.” She made a few as a Lowell teacher. “I remember things that I had trouble with the country dread reading classic literature such as The short movies during her student days at Lowell. She moved as a Lowell student that I finally understood through film,” Yu Hobbit. However, new English teacher Samantha Yu is on on to make films such as an adaptation of D.H. Lawrence’s said. “Because of that, I have ideas for presenting the process a mission to change that by making her English classes unique “Rocking-Horse Winner,” while part of the San Francisco Art of reading for ‘deeper meaning’ in an accessible way.” & Film program. Yu will bring her memory of a student’s point-of-view, and engaging for students across Yu plans on taking advantage of her now she can help her students turn what may have been a rote the board. extensive knowledge of film to help her English assignment into a unique and interesting undertaking. Having graduated from Lowstudents better understand material. She can bring her passionate Cardinal spirit to a community ell, Yu has been a near constant I love when I ask a “I want to use film to show how form where she has history. presence on campus, from stustudent a challenging and structure influence dent to substitute teacher for content, and how to four years to her present job question and they give close read for subtext,” as a regular classroom teacher. Yu said. “Sometimes “A lot of the teachers that I had me a rich and complex seeing material helps while here are still here,” Yu response.” people better undersaid. “At first it’s strange, but it’s stand how the interprekind of fun seeing them joke SAMANTHA YU, tation process works.” about things you’d never hear Although she has English teacher as a student.” stepped into a variYu has subbed all over the ety of curricular areas, district. “Lowell is heaven compared to other schools from a sub’s perspective,” she said. English is the subject where Yu shines. “I love “I have been to schools that keep you on your toes – there’s it when students offer rich responses, or coma chance of someone starting a fight or making a big scene plex questions,” Yu said. “This sparks discuswhile the teacher is gone.” Besides the survival skills aspect, Yu sions that go in-depth with whatever material preferred to stay loyal to her alma mater. “It took me a while we read, beneath the surface meaning.” Yu’s students expressed appreciation for to realize, but Lowell is my ideal place to teach,” Yu said. “You can push students towards more sophisticated thinking, and it’s her engaging and interactive style of teachparticularly exciting when some go beyond your expectations.” ing. “Ms. Yu really makes English class fun,” Yu recently took over former English teacher Benefsha Gest’s sophomore Crystal Lee said. “She subbed for me last year, and we had a really informative classes when Gest retired. Currently teaching 9th, 10th and 11th grade English classes, discussion about King Lear. I loved it.” The English department benefitted from Yu said she values the rewarding feeling of giving back to the community through her teaching. “One of the reasons I chose to Yu’s ability to seamlessly incorporate herself teach was that I want to be helpful to others,” Yu said. “Teaching into the Lowell community, despite the fact is much more beneficial to others than sitting at an office job. that she had to plunge into working full time You’re helping people think, reflect, and create meaning about three weeks after the semester began. “SamanSally Ma tha seems to fit like a glove here at Lowell,” their world and about themselves.” Although teaching is Yu’s current job, she is very passionate English teacher Robert Emerson said. “She’s English teacher Samantha Yu returns to the Lowell motherland about filmmaking. “I am a double major, with literature and perfect here.”

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Basketball superstar scores big points with scholarship By Campbell Gee

basketball provided me with some- during the championship.” varsity cross-country and I do varsity thing to write about, but this was Ng credits her achievement to basketball.” about three days before the deadline. sheer determination and simple At the ceremony, Ng and the I had to write a couple of essays kindness. “I am always really com- other Northern California teens about how I think I make my sport mitted to the team, and approachable who received the scholarship had to better to everyone give an acceptance speech in front of a n d my i n c l u d i n g the other guests, who ranged from involveunder- famous athletes to peers.   “I was From doing sports, I the m e n t c l a s s m e n ,” definitely nervous but it was also in my have learned life lessons she said. “I a cathartic moment to be able to commumake sure I voice out how grateful I am to have like coming together always come won the scholarship,” Ng said. “The nity. But I started was also a way for me to valiwith my team despite ab ce ri no gs s a pa s- speech the apdate PCA choosing me as a winner.” plication Though she is now the recipient proachable.” obstacles.” two days O t h e r of a prestigious scholarship, the before it varsity team meaning behind the prize was more ANGIE NG, was due; m e m b e r s important to Ng than the money. senior I had to a g re e t h at “The reason PCA gave us the money c a l l my Ng is a vital was to recognize us as leaders of our teachers and coaches and ask them component to their group. “Angie is community and to encourage us to for recommendations.” super fast and court-smart,” junior keeping leading others in the future,” Ng may be a force to be reck- GG Gunther said. “She’s a great she said. “Everyone leads and learns oned with on the court, but her teammate and is really nice on and by example, and winning the scholschool sports career began only six off the court.” arship made me realize that I should years ago as a sixth Throughout her journey as an continue to lead by example.” grader at Corner- athlete, Ng has had her own cheering Although Ng plans to focus more stone Academy. section. She expressed her gratitude on academics rather than sports durSince then, Ng has for her biging colgone on to play gest fan –– lege, she club basketball for ­­her identical hopes the the San Francisco twin sister Though she is now the values she Flying Eagles for Rachel, who learned recipient of a prestigious t h rou g h six years and for also attends L owe l l v ar s it y Lowell. The scholarship, the mean- the hard basketball since siblings ran work of her sophomore cross-couning behind the prize was p l a y i n g year. “From play- try together basketmore important to Ng ball will ing sports, I have i n m i d d l e learned life les- school, but aid her in than the money. sons like coming Angie found joining an together with my the sport to intramuteam despite ob- be too much ral team stacles,” Ng said. work and soon found her true call- and also carry through to other “Two years ago, ing in basketball. “Rachel’s been parts of her life. “I’ve learned a lot varsity basketball supportive of me when I play sports; about commitment because in sports lost the Battle of she rarely complains when my mom you have a whole team to be held Photo Courtesy of Angie Ng the Birds yet all and I spend the weekend away from accountable to.” Ng said. “I love Athletic superstar, Angie Ng, (center) accepting her scholarship from Peter Varellas (left) and of us were able to home for basketball tournaments,” basketball, so I never thought of it Sonja Dewitt (right). overcome that and Ng said. “ Now in high school we as hard work. I always do it because beat Washington each have our own sports; she does I want to.”

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hile some Lowell students struggle to balance Advanced Placement classes, homework and extracurricular activities, one young athlete always shines on. She dominates on the court and shows how being a solid team player can pay off with big bucks. Senior Angie Ng was among 50 Northern California high school students who qualified for the Positive Coaching Alliance Triple-Impact Scholarship (www.positivecoach. org). The scholarship’s supporters include major league sports figures –– such as San Francisco Giants player Barry Zito and PCA’s national spokesperson, former Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson –– who evaluate athletes based on how well they better themselves, their sport and their teammates. After Ng was informed by email

that she had been selected to be one of the 50 finalists in her region, she attended the PCA Triple-Impact Scholarship ceremony at Stanford University on Sept. 22, where ten of the finalists were awarded $2,000. PCA honored the athletes with a breakfast at Stanford as they listened to a speech from two-time U.S. Olympic Water Polo Team member Peter Varellas. To her surprise, Ng surpassed 125 applicants and the 50 finalists to snag a spot as one of the ten winners, one of only two athletes from San Francisco to do so. “I was surprised and honored to be a winner because all the other athletes were just as qualified as me,” Ng said. She recalls how applying last June was a spur-of-the-moment process, admittedly due to procrastination. “I finally decided to apply when I found out that my friend from another school applied for the scholarship,” Ng said. “My experiences playing

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COLUMNS

November 9, 2012

The Lowell

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Furball lover finds friendship in the fish bowl

By Tyler Perkins

require daily walks with a stock s a young child, dogs and cats of plastic bags, and cats meow to sent me to the emergency room many be let out at 3 a.m.  As a Lowell times. I had a severe allergy to animal student, I know that I wouldn’t fur, but could never resist petting the cute have the time to properly care for animals.  Fur would cause me to have intense a dog or cat, but fish are perfectly sneezing fits, sometimes sparking asthma happy swimming in my kitchen attacks; hence the hospital.  Perhaps it was while I do my homework at the the masochist in me, but I loved animals and table. Keeping fish happy is much refused to stay away from my neighbors’ black lab and my grandparents’ shorthaired tabbies.  cheaper than keeping up the I wanted a “real” pet more than anything.  Day quality of life for dogs and cats.  after day I begged my parents, “Just a Chihua- With a fish all you need is a $10 hua or Siamese: we could shave it,” I pleaded.  bowl, a $5 bag of pebbles and a But they would never consider sacrificing my $3 container of multicolored fish health and I was forced to stick with fish.             food.  With larger pets however, As I have gotten older, the severity of my you need to spend $2 per can allergy has declined, but I still wheeze, cough of food, hundreds of dollars on and sneeze every time I’m in the same room as accessories, not to mention the a Fido or Fluffy.  Over the years, my willpower expensive medical bills if they and self-protection has increased so I can re- get sick.  Fish only cost a few frain from triggering a reaction by scratching dollars to care for, but dogs and a dog behind its ears.  I now understand why cats will suck thousands of dolI can’t have a furry pet, and even would rather lars out of your bank account, a sally Ma costly labor of love. not have one than be sick all the time.  Throughout my life, I have The author gazes past the scales into the soul of one of his countless aquatic friends at a local Petco Fish have helped fill the void in my life caused by the absence of dogs and cats. The developed very strong relationtoilet.  Fish are easier to replace.  When Spotty time.  My allergies did deprive me of the classic biggest advantage of having a fish is the mini- ships with my grandparents’ was flushed, I went to the pet store the next childhood Lassie experience, but I have come pets, but this made it extremely difficult to mal amount of commitment required to keep day to get Shiny.  These life cycles continued to realize these were just the cards I was dealt.  let go when they died.  I was in second grade it happy and alive; fish only depend on you At the time I would have traded everything I for a pinch of multicolored flakes twice a day. when Gus The Cat was tragically mauled by a for dozens of fish. As I grew older, I partially outgrew my owned for a larger companion, but these fish Even if you miss a few days, a fish can suck the coyote; I still remember crying for hours, even algae off the sides of the tank.  Also, a fish can though it wasn’t my cat.  Of course I have lost excitement over having fish, but I will always taught me that friends have no physical boundrelieve itself in the tank, but a dog or cat has to several fish over the years and I was sad, but my remember training Spotty to follow my finger aries and now I’m glad I had the opportunity to be trained not to poop on your carpet.  Dogs sorrow soon accompanied the fish down the and watching him dart and float for hours at a have these “real” pets swimming in my kitchen.     

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Feline fanatic readily embraces kitty cat power

By Elena Bernick

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ave you ever seen the black stone statue of an elegantly seated cat — the one with the nose ring? I think the Egyptians had it right. Not because of their archeological achievements, but for the sole reason that they were smart enough to worship those mysterious yet cuddly creatures — cats. When I was six years old, my family went to Pets Unlimited to adopt our first cat. After scaling the spiral staircase, we arrived at the feline cages. My eyes fell on a ginger cat, sleeping alone in its cage, and I wouldn’t leave until we had him in the car. Gilbert Grape started out, as we all do, adorable — a tiny, orange-striped kitten. He has since grown into his name, literally. Today he is still orange, but his stripes are gone and he is much larger. We loved Gilbert so much that we adopted our second cat, Isabelle, a month later. She’s black on her back and white on her stomach, with four white boots that she cleans continually, and she remains as tiny and skittish as when we first met.

People complain that cats are ungrateful moochers. I have to admit, Gilbert can seem to mirror Garfield. Gilbert’s routine revolves around his favorite area — the kitchen. He always greets me when I come home from school, waiting anxiously in the kitchen to nudge his head against my leg and point me towards his empty food bowl. But Isabelle is a perfect example of how felines are just as loyal as the dog lover’s brag. Every night, as I finish up my homework and start my nighttime ritual, she waits patiently next to my door. When I turn out the lights, she hops onto my bed and rests by my feet the whole night. Many cats might seem shy, scared and unfriendly; but this is just a façade. Of course, the day we adopted Gilbert and brought him home, I immediately ran after the frightened feline, wanting to hold my new adorable pet. Gilbert would have none of it, and he ran away faster than I could shout his name. At first I was confused; why wouldn’t he want to be showered with love? After a couple of weeks he warmed up to the family, and now he’s big, loveable, and — even sometimes — friendly. I’ve learned that a cat won’t love just anyone, like a

slobbery dog will, and you have to earn a cat’s trust. Once you do, you know you’ve done something right. Among the plethora of reasons to love a feline, the most rational includes the ease of taking care of it. A tabby does not need daily walks or baths, like a flea-infested dog might, or anything beyond the occasional scratch under the chin. As someone who is eternally lazy, I like knowing that if I want to lounge around at home all day in my pajamas, my cat will happily sleep next to me through a marathon of Chopped. Above all else, what makes cats better than any other pet, or animal for that matter, is how cute they are. If Isabelle chews a hole through a new sweater, instead of being filled with anger, the moment I see her little face, my annoyance melts away. The same goes for when I’m having a bad day. If I just failed a test in pre-calculus, I really need a furry fluff ball greeting me at the door. Our society has turned against the very creatures that were once so sought after by ancient people. Cats are portrayed as stuck-up, which is an unfair representation of these dignified felines. The Egyptians proved to be innovators in society: the pyramids, the hieroglyphics. But by far their greatest contribution was their appreciation of cats.

Boy in puppy love advocates for his canine comrade By Spencer Thirtyacre

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ogs are just as excited to see their masters as San Franciscans were to see the Giants win their second world championship in three years. There is not a day when I unlock the door that my dog isn’t waiting with her tail wagging, ready to play. A dog is man’s best friend for a reason — whether you’ve been gone for an hour or a month, they’ll always greet you with a wagging tail and a giant grin. Mutts are always willing to socialize with anyone, anytime, anywhere. My mixed-breed pup, Maxie Lu will get up from a nap to roughhouse, play fetch or just run around the backyard; she just wants to hang out with me. Crazy canines can never get enough love. Whenever I feed Maxie she revels in the tasteful delight as if it were a five-star meal I cooked myself, instead of just the same brown kibble straight out of the bag from Trader Joes. And

when she rolls over to ask for a belly rub, she politely gives me a ‘thank you’ lick. Dogs, unlike their ungrateful feline counterparts, greatly appreciate simply being taken care of. Unlike other household pets, dogs can read human emotions, sometimes even better than other humans. Maxie will comfort me when I’m sad and celebrate with me when I’m happy. If she feels that I am under attack or in danger she, like all loyal dogs, will rush to my side. My dog is always ready to protect the house; if there is a knock at the door, she runs up to make sure it is not an intruder. I have never seen a cat put the welfare of their owner above themselves. Dogs are also intelligent, especially compared to cats who foolishly chase after laser lights. According the Dec. 3 2010 article in Psychology Today “Are Dogs More Intelligent than Cats?” dogs have a much higher Encephalization Quotient which is similar to IQ. Your EQ is measured by brain size and social abilities. Not only are dogs brainier, repeated

tests of EQ show an increase in the intelligence gap over the history of domesticated animals. Dogs are much more fun to be around because of their smarts. I’ve taught Maxie to stay, lie down and even high five. With a bag of Beggin’ Strips and 10 minutes per day, anyone can teach their dog astounding tricks. Try to get a cat to roll over; they will be pissed off for the rest of the day, and maybe give you a scratch or two for your troubles. I can take Maxie wherever I go, whether it is for a walk through the park, or a long jog where I can reflect and relax after a stressful day; I can never be lonely with her rolling up in a ball and resting her head on me. Dogs will protect and care about you. Would you rather come home to a pet that merely acknowledges you with a nod of the head, or a furry ball of love that welcomes you with the utmost happiness? So are you a snarky cat person or an altruistic dog person?

photo courtesy of spencer thirtyacre

Maxie Lu suns at the beach while thinking deep doggy thoughts


Lowell High School

Kara Scherer

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’m with The Lowell.” That magical phrase combined with a flash of my press pass is my access behindthe-scenes to exciting events at school. Besides receiving free admission to sports games plus a killer view from on the field, I gained more knowledge of what upcoming events offer, and the opportunity to photograph both the muchanticipated dance concert and the school play before opening night. One of my favorite parts of being a journalism photographer is getting to join The Lowell family. While spending a few days in S108 compiling my photography portfolio, I quickly realized that there is a tight-knit group of bright, curious, motivated and hilarious people behind each issue. I learn about the

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November 9, 2012 stories that they cover and provide a visual that will draw in readers. After two months, I already feel like a part of this amazing student-empowered community. I had no idea how to be a photojournalist before joining the newspaper. I liked taking pictures, but the idea of blending in with my surroundings and taking candid shots was totally foreign to me. However now – with plenty of help from the veteran photographers over the past two months – I even feel ready to take on solo assignments. The confidence and purpose that comes along with being a staff photographer, as well as the camaraderie of being part of a larger picture is a snapshot of my time in high school that I wish I could have captured sooner.

Huimin Zhang

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t was early March, and school was quickly becoming a routine trudge through my classes until I stumbled upon an announcement on SchoolLoop: PHOTOGRAPHERS AND MULTIMEDIA STAFF WANTED FOR JOURNALISM. I didn’t know anything about photography or journalism. I thought it would be fun to take up a extra-curricular. So I decided to answer the call. After the photography editors gave me a brief crash course in photojournalism, I started shadowing staff photographers on various assignments. Shooting assignments had a sort of Zen-like quality, almost like fishing for photogenic moments. Suddenly, I was thrown into the deep end and was sent on my first solo assignment: the talent show. The talent show provided both an exciting opportunity and a huge amount

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of pressure — it was just me and my camera. Needless to say, I was nervous. However, after I had taken a couple of shots, my camera granted me the state of Zen — the subject of my photos was all that mattered — I guess that’s being in the zone. I forgot about how The Lowell needed photos, forgot about the space on the memory card and definitely forgot about that math test the next day. As I made my way back to Room S108, I found that I had gotten a slew of good photos. In fact, the journalism editors published my work in a photo essay and most of them ended up in my portfolio, and contributed to my becoming an official photojournalist for The Lowell. This progression has provided me not only with a ridiculous number of Zen moments, but being crowned with a press pass enlightenment.

Photo illustration by gavin li, kara scherer and huimin zhang Photos by Elena Bernick, Sally MA, Kara Scherer and Huimin Zhang

Introduce yourself to The Lowell’s photographers

Gavin Li

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ot too long ago, taking pictures was nothing more than a hobby; I’d take shots of sunsets, seagulls, and inanimate objects, but I’d never venture out of my comfort zone, reserving myself solely to situations where I could remain anonymous and unnoticed, like a shadow on sunny day. I had never considered shooting photos outside of the artistic realm because I was slightly intimidated by the aspect of meeting the subject of the photo face-toface. I was content with my photographs at first, but as I began to run out of places and things to snap, I started looking for new channels to direct my focus. One day during sophomore year, I was looking outside the second floor window during physics class when I saw a soccer match outside. Seeing that I had my camera with me at that time and no plans after school, I decided to go down to the field and try my hand at freezing the

fast-moving players. That day I learned the dynamic nature of photojournalism — it’s virtually impossible to get the same picture twice. As time went on, I found myself increasingly lured towards school events — sports games, rallies, school plays, etc. — for the “human” element, the sense of life and reality that one can’t find shooting landscapes. I often saw photojournalists for The Lowell at these events; they were vital to introducing me the “rules of the trade” as well as techniques for capturing the moment. After shooting almost every soccer, volleyball and basketball game in the first semester of sophomore year, I realized I was already doing a photojournalist’s work for no reason other than my own enjoyment. As the next logical step, I started submitting my photos to the newspaper for publishing, and not long after, I became an official staff photographer. There are certainly few boundaries for a news photographer

on the hunt. Climbing trees alongside a cross-country track or chasing the students chasing the Cardinal at the rally are examples of a few of the more extreme acts I have done in the pursuit of the perfect shot.I used to prioritize the technical quality over the content of the photographs I take, but getting shots of real people in real situations made me realize that each photograph has its own unique story. Photojournalism is not just about barging into a classroom to get a shot of a certain teacher; it’s also about getting to know her and her classroom better so that they would be more comfortable in my presence. Unlike many other genres of photography, photojournalism is distinctive because there are no retakes for any moment in time. Once the ball has been caught, once the dancer lands, and once the split-second passes, the moment becomes nothing more but an imprint in one’s memory. The challenge of catching that image, like the fossils of a dinosaur, defines why the camera captivates me. And of course, as the pinnacle to the hours spent out and about, there’s nothing like seeing the best of my shots covering a full page of the newspaper for all to view. For the complete version of this story please visit www.thelowell.org

Sally Ma

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ver since I first looked through a viewfinder, cameras have been my favorite toys. After a friend who shares this same passion introduced me to Sally Mann, a photographer well known for her children’s portraits and landscape photos, I was inspired to photograph nature and architecture. In the beginning, I only shared the photos I took with a couple of close friends because I was afraid other people might think they were terrible. But my friend broke the ice by posting my photos on Tumblr (www.tumblr.com) and crediting me as the photographer; I was fine with this. After that, I started to upload my photos to a

photo-sharing website for friends and distant relatives to see. Sophomore year, a friend of mine encouraged me to share my passion by being a photographer for the school newspaper. Though I was hesitant about the idea at first, being unsure of my skills, at the end of sophomore year I went by the journalism room to find out more information. In the journ room, all the past issues of the newspaper displayed on the wall intimidated me, and seeing the photographers’ assignment board scared me. But I had already made an internal commitment, so I decided to give it a shot. When I first started, I realized there was a significant difference between photography as a hobby and as photojournalism. As a hobby, I took pictures of still objects like

roses and cupcakes, but photojournalism is about sports and news. I initially made many mistakes, such as using the wrong lens when I was taking pictures of a football game; instead of using the zoom lens to get up-close photos, I brought my kit lens instead so my photos were out of range. When I covered a volleyball match, the lighting in the gym during the volleyball game made it difficult to adjust the camera to the correct setting, therefore the photos turned out either to be dark or blurry. But as time progressed, I learned to avoid those mishaps, and even got a “photo courtesy of ” in the October issue. As the newest photographer, I was given the chance to learn from experienced photographers who guided me as I worked on my portfolio. The most memorable moment was during the fall spirit rally when my memory card ran out of space. The juniors were danc-

ing, and I was watching their dance from the viewfinder but when I clicked the release button, it did not snap. I looked at the screen of my camera: card is full. Unfortunately, I did not have a spare card with me, so I deleted all of the soccer and football photos that I had already uploaded. Luckily, that gave me about an extra 150 shots for the rest of the rally. Photojournalism is all about thinking on your feet! As a photojournalist, I tell stories visually through images rather than words. And talk about variety — I attend volleyball games to capture dynamic hits and serves, as well as visiting the UNICEF club to take pictures of guest speakers. Journalism is where creativity is encouraged, allowing students like me to find a place to express their passion. Sally Mann takes nature and portrait photos, but Sally Ma goes from art to news, scenic shots to action shots, to actors in action.


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November 9, 2012

EDITORIALS

The Lowell

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EDITORIALS Lowell needs to crack down on cheating for students’ best interest

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he words, “Psst! Hey dude, pass me the answers,” can be heard whispered in almost every classroom in the country. Cheating has evolved from old-school notes being passed around in the classroom to students texting each other answers during a test. With the boom in technology in the last 10 years, students have a library of resources to copy from at their disposal. But this access contributes to a lack of connection to the course material. Too many students have allowed cheating to become a habit; if they stop, they will fail because they did not learn what they were supposed to, causing them to fall behind in class.   Then the cycle starts all over again. In “a survey of 24,000 high school students in grades 9-12, 95 percent of students say they’ve cheated during the course of their education,” according to End the Race (www.endtherace.org), a website promoting academic reform. While this is a very high number, it is not surprising because of student competitiveness. “There is also the pressure of needing to get into a good college,” English teacher Winifred Lo said. Te a c h e r s , a w a r e o f t h e s e f i g u r e s , a r e a d j u s t i n g t h e i r t e a c h i n g p r a c t i c e s . E v e r y d a y, t h e s e t e a c h e r s deem homework too easy to copy from another student. Some teachers try to circumvent the issue by discounting or even declining to grade certain assignments; some do not even look at the assigned work, making homework an optional practice as they assert that students will benefit by doing it as test preparation. However, this not only robs the students of opportunities to earn a grade for their consistent work effort, but also deprives students of a chance to learn. People learn from their mistakes, which is why students should be assessed on their homework so they can see where they went wrong and learn to correct themselves before the next exam. But the disconnect starts with students who copy and are not doing authentic work. As a result, some teachers are influenced against doing authentic corrections on papers. The ways that teachers have students take tests and write essays have also changed. Teachers use websites such as Turnitin (www. turnitin.com) to check students’ essays for plagiarized material, receiving a percentage score based on how close it relates to online material and other essays submitted to Turnitin. Some teachers now assign most or all essays to be written in class, rather than take-home essays as a way to prevent students from looking online and plagiarizing another person’s work. However, students are too rushed during these timed essays to do their best work, which reflects upon how well the essays can be written and how useful they are to learning. Student plagiarism has meant they lose out on being able to craft take-home essays and exponentially improve as writers. Tests are an ongoing struggle; a few teachers even appear to ignore the regular glancing at others’ papers during tests. But most try to protect the integrity of the test by separating students and having different test versions, to minimize the desire to copy another person’s paper. While proctoring essays and tests, teachers sometimes use class time to set up dividers between students to prevent them from copying each other. Although it is more work for them, teachers sometimes make multiple versions of tests to further discourage copying. Hence cheating students are distracting teachers from designing a strong curriculum, instead forcing them to spend time developing anti-plagiarism strategies. Well-meaning teachers across the country are enablers, as they are not punishing the students enough if caught.   Most adults say that students are the future of our nation, but allow cheating to slip by, and as a result students enter the real world without the proper education necessary to succeed. Schools should not be graduating ill-prepared young individuals. Instead, teachers should have more one-on-one meetings with struggling students to make sure they actually understand what is being taught to them. Students may cheat because they are embarrassed to ask for help. “Students also feel that getting good grades will make their parents happy,” Lo said.

Hoi Leung

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Dear Editor, As an actively involved Lowell senior, I have been extremely disappointed in our administration this year. Numerous issues have risen in the past ten weeks of school. My biggest concern is the new dance policy. I have attended about twenty dances in my time at Lowell and would like to consider myself a dance “regular.” If you did not attend the Homecoming dance, you may be confused of the new policies I speak of. Let me break it down for you: 1) If a student is caught doing “dirty dancing,” he/she is escorted by a security guard/faculty member to the Dean’s office. 2) The student is informed that if they do not comply with the new policy, and they are caught “dirty dancing,” they are removed from the dance and POSSIBLY banned from their Prom. 3) They are forced into a 15 minute time-out to think about what they’ve done wrong. The definition of “dirty dancing” is extremely ambiguous. Some faculty see this as dancing at a “90 degree angle,” while some believe “hands on the ground” or “hands on the knees” while “bumping and grinding” should deserve this “time-out.” Administration brought up the new

idea with students on LSA – student government – who brought up the idea with their constituents. News spread of the new policies in the first few weeks of school and immediately attendance suffered at the Welcome Back dance. Students were NOT informed of the new policy before purchasing a ticket to the dance. In my years at Lowell, I have never seen such an adamant pursuit by faculty to break up this so called “dirty dancing.” I have not seen the style of dancing change in the four years I have been at Lowell, so many students ask, why change the policy now? Administrators say it is because they have always wanted to stop the dancing, but decided it was finally the year. They also believe that changing this policy is “safer for the students.” Many students have said that they will start attending city functions such as “Hush” or “Teen Glo.” In my humble opinion, these dances are much more dangerous and inappropriate for students. I have attended a “Teen Glo” and was appalled to see that there were beds and open condom wrappers on the floor. Ask yourself what’s the right thing for Lowell. ~Anonymous Business Managers Martin Costa, Rachel Hsu, Sophie Solomon, Gabe Schumm

Cardinal Sharn Matusek Red Cathy Innis

Editors-in-Chief Amy Char • Adriana Millar Cooper Logan • Eva Morgenstein

News Amy Char, Deidre Foley, Cooper Logan Sports Henry Hammel, Ian James Features Kai Matsumoto-Hines, Eva Morgenstein Columns & Profiles KT Kelly, Adriana Millar Opinion Elazar Chertow, Spencer Thirtyacre Reporters Dylan Anderson, Elijah Alperin, Elena Bernick, Antonio

Carmona, Celena Chang, Gideon Fox, Campbell Gee, Zoe Kaiser, KT Kelly, Joseph Kim, Raymond Lang, Rayming Liang, Whitney C. Lim, Cooper Logan, Ashley Louie, Eva Morgenstein, Patricia Nguy, Brian Nguyen, Andrew Pearce, Tyler Perkins, Pasha Stone, Sam Tick-Raker, Samantha Wilcox, Joey Wong, Michelle Wong, Luming Yuan, Sheyda Zebarjadian Art Editor Hoi Leung Illustrator Kimberley Li

Photo Editor Gavin Li Photographers Sally Ma, Kara Scherer, Cate Stern, Huimin Zhang Multimedia Editor: Monica Castro Web/Tech Editor-in-Chief Gavin Li Web Staff Elijah Alperin, Monica Castro, Henry Hammel

Advisers

Published every four weeks by the journalism classes of Lowell High School, Room S108, 1101 Eucalyptus Drive, San Francisco, CA 94132 Phone: (415) 759-2730 Internet: thelowellads@yahoo.com; http://www. thelowell.org. All contents copyright Lowell High School journalism classes. All rights reserved. The Lowell and The Lowell on the Web strive to inform the public and to use their opinion sections as open forums for debate. All unsigned editorials are the opinions of the staff. The Lowell welcomes comments on school-related issues from students, faculty and community members. Send letters to lowellopinion@gmail.com. Letters must be signed. Names will be withheld upon request. We reserve the right to edit letters before publication. 2011 NSPA All-American 2011 NSPA Online Pacemaker 2009 NSPA First Class Honors 2007 NSPA All-American

2007 NSPA Web Pacemaker 2007 CSPA Gold Crown 2006 NSPA Pacemaker 2006 NSPA All-American

Continues on page 19

Students must follow schedule rules to preserve Lowell’s 8-Blocks “I took a 1-2 through 19-20 schedule my freshman and sophomore years, so now that I have finished my VPA and language, it’s my turn to relax a bit,” said a junior who spoke on the condition of anonymity and who is currently not taking classes Mods 1-6, an illegal schedule. Many Lowell students echo this sentiment. The competitive atmosphere and individual choice during schedule sign-up at Arena can often induce a mindset of pursuing the best possible schedule, often at the expense of schedule guidelines and the entire block system. The guidelines state that students must be at school for at least seven blocks each day, which entails having a Block 1, a Block 8 or both. Many students slip through the cracks with schedules that violate this rule. When they do this, counselors have to weight other schedules more heavily towards the first and last blocks of the day. This type of irresponsible action could even put Lowell’s schedule at risk. This selfish pursuit is threatening the unique

8-Block schedule that gives students so much flexibility. “To meet the State requirements on Instructional Minutes, a vast majority of Lowell students MUST be enrolled in all Blocks (18) of our daily schedule,” the spring 2013 schedule exemption form states. “Excessive exemptions for Block 1 and/or 8 will jeopardize our bell schedule.” If the number of students enrolled in Block 1 or Block 8 falls below 60 percent of the student body, “The bell schedule will have to be revisited and the state will come down on us,” assistant principal of student support services Michael Yi said. The 8-Block schedule is one of the scheduling privileges available at Lowell but not at any other school in the district. Mission and Washington have 7-Blocks total, but Lincoln, Marshall, Balboa and Galileo have only 6-Blocks. All of these schools have allotted a separate time for lunch. The 230 credits required for graduation allows for at least three years taking six classes and one year taking five. At schools with only 6-Blocks, there is minimal wiggle room to take extra classes like electives

or VPAs, essentially only one extra class over a student’s entire high school career. If students value the 8-Block schedule, they need to support it by following school guidelines, even at the expense of their personal schedules in some cases. Abusing the privilege of having such a flexible schedule puts at risk the school’s generous schedule and therefore future classes’ opportunity to take advantage of it. Although it is tempting to build a schedule with as little time at school as possible, the students who manage this are able to do so because they were given the opportunity to take seven classes in an 8-Block day as freshmen and sophomores. Now that they have reaped the benefits of the schedule, they should not jeopardize the opportunity for future generations. Lowell provides a flexible, college-like schedule to students who fully utilize this privilege. Violating the rules that make it possible squanders the chance to take the four year AP track of language in addition to high-interest electives or VPAs. Don’t be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.


November 9, 2012

Lowell High School

Student argues for change in ‘Band 3’ admissions process

OPINIONS & EDITORIALS

Reporter saddened by low turnout at games

   Should private school students have an  edge in admissions, because Lowell policy  states that  they come from “underrepresented  schools? including Martin Luther King Jr, and By Elijah Alperin HIS WINTER OVER 1,000 eighth Visitacion Valley — with the latter including graders and their families will The Hamlin School and Stuart Hall School for meticulously tally points as they vie for Boys. Both Visitacion Valley and MLK have acceptance to Lowell. They will check out the socioeconomically disadvantaged populations acceptance policy and mission statement of the of higher than 80 percent, according to school school to get details on the different pathways profiles on the SFUSD website. In stark contrast, both Hamlin and Stuart to becoming a Cardinal. They may notice a puzzling facet of the application method; Hall charge tuitions of upwards of $25,000, a conspicuous discrepancy exists in the according to their respective websites. In fact, the annual demographics among schools named perating on the underrepresented schools list. Last year, 22 of the obudget of The variance between the middle Hamlin for schools on the list — and the presence Band 3 admission its 400 girls is of elite private schools in particular over 13 million — is not an administrative oversight. letters were sent to dollars, roughly Rather, it is a small but significant private schoolers. 2 million dollars loophole in the Lowell admissions more than that practices. The adoption of the bandbased admission policy in 2001 was intended of Lowell, with an enrollment of roughly to benefit public students in need, but has 2,600. Although financial aid is available at these spilled over to students who have every high-end schools, unless the admissions opportunity available to them. The policy outlines three pathways, or taskforce devises some way to distinguish bands, through which students may be students from individual schools based on accepted to Lowell: 70 percent of admissions socioeconomic class, the system is too porous. are under Band 1, the group applicant pool Parochial schools on the list with tuitions that meets a specific academic standard and under $10,000 cater to a more middle class demographic, but surely students from these then participates in schools, and certainly those a lottery, while 15 schools like Hamlin, percent each go to The district should from should not by default be given Band 2: students who a leg up in Lowell admission, have an administrator remove all private especially if it is only the recommendation and result of the majority of their Band 3: students from schools from the ungraduating peers choosing underrepresented derrepresented list. to continue with a private schools. education. Each year, roughly Last year, 22 of the Band 130 students from public and private schools alike progress 3 admission letters went to private school students, with eight students ultimately through Band 3 admissions. By exploiting a technicality of the three- enrolling in the school the following school band acceptance policy, each year a few year, according to Ramirez. Over the past 11 years roughly 75-100 privileged students — possibly from the more posh private middle schools — are awarded students may have exploited the same acceptance into Lowell each year under the technicality. One may object that the problem is slight, guise of bolstering the “underrepresented” population of the school. This flaw in the as the number of students who are accepted system that allows for such an obvious abuse under these flawed criteria is under 1 percent of the intentions of the policy lies in the way of the student body. However, it is significant when viewed in the underrepresented status is determined. In order for a school to be deemed context of even a few truly underrepresented underrepresented at Lowell, the number of students who may have been profoundly affected, as students it graduates each year and the they were not number who matriculate as Cardinals accepted due to are compared, according to according The adoption of the... the enrollment to Alana Ramirez, the Operations cut off, but did Manager who oversees Lowell policy was intended not have access placement at the SFUSD Educational to similarly Placement Center. If a school’s to benefit public challenging, three-year average of students school students. but pricy admitted to Lowell is lower than the p r i v a t e three-year average of its percentage education. To of the eighth grade population of San Francisco, the school is added to the remedy this issue, the district should remove list, without weighing reasons for the low all private schools from the underrepresented schools list. representation. Students from these schools would then This results in an obvious distinction between the two types of schools on the be on even footing with the majority of San Band 3 list: those underrepresented due to Francisco middle schoolers, falling into the 85 socioeconomic and social disadvantages percent aggregation of the Band 1 and Band and those underrepresented through family 2 systems. The intent of the policy is to open spots choice. The 2012-2013 list is available on the San at Lowell for Band 3 students, rewarding the Francisco Unified School District website hard work and ambition of disadvantaged section on Lowell admissions (www.sfusd. youth through the payoff of an acceptance edu), and bundles the former — schools letter from a flagship public school.

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Want to have your opinions printed in the next issue of The Lowell? You can submit your letters to the editor by email to thelowellopinion@gmail.com or deliver it outside S107

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By Ian James URING MY TWO and a half years at Lowell I have gone to perhaps four or five sports games outside of my own sport, soccer. The school’s annual spirit rallies are seen as an annual pain for many. I myself have accumulated a lengthy list of excuses to worm my way out of any school-related obligations. Instead of embracing my school colors I quickly point out that a game is too late, I have too much homework or that it will be a blowout anyways. The one day of the year that I do come out to support Lowell is varsity football’s Battle of the Birds. I don’t enjoy it because I am a big football fan. In fact Battle of the Birds and the Superbowl are usually my only two encounters with touchdowns each year. I enjoy it because when crowds come out to support our school team the atmosphere can be electric. Our school unites for a couple of glorious hours against a foreign foe and on occasions, such as this year, we can even come out victorious with a crazy score of 44-14. I know that I am not the only one who has this mindset. Have you ever watched a Lowell tennis match, or a varsity baseball game in Golden Gate Park? The majority of students at our school would probably have to answer that question “No.” As a Lowell varsity athlete, I am continually disappointed when I look up

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from the field and see sparsely-occupied stands — at our games just 15 or 20 people are a cause for celebration. Embarrassingly we are often out-cheered by the visiting teams. In this year’s league-deciding match-up against KIMBERLEY LI Mission there were 100 or so opposing fans supporting their team, while Lowell was garnering most of its support from parents. Earlier this year I went to a girl’s volleyball match. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, since I had rarely ventured into the gym since freshmen PE. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the vibrant atmosphere and competitive match-ups. True, a majority of the fans had graduated 12th grade a while ago but as I cheered on my friends I thought this is something I will happily do again. So go to a Friday game instead of watching Friday Night Lights. A school-wide effort is needed; we all need to take pride in all Lowell sports. Last year fifteen different varsity Lowell teams brought home championships, which is more than every other public school combined. These teams, including those who succumb to stronger teams in the playoffs, present a great opportunity for Lowell students to show up on the stands, both to represent their school and to support their classmates. It’s an exciting break from doing homework, besides being much cheaper than most activities in the city. At a school with as many students as Lowell there is the potential for crowds at every game and a carnival-like atmosphere every week.

EDITORIAL

From!"#$%#&'()*+",)-./')01 CHEATING page 18 Some teachers feel personally offended when students cheat on assignments, believing that the students have cheated on the teacher by not respecting the worth of the curriculum, similar to the trust broken when people cheat while in relationships. “I trust the students to be honest and produce work that is original,” Lo said. “I feel betrayed when they don’t produce work that is theirs and I hate feeling like I can’t trust my students.” In order to stop the amount of cheating that occurs in the classrooms, the school should implement a new policy discouraging students’ negative behavior including harsher punishments. For the first offence, students would be required to have a meeting with their parents, the teacher and the dean. The English department has a “Book of Shame” where a copy of students’ plagiarized work will be kept for all teachers to see. This book should be expanded to allow teachers from all departments to file inauthentic work in order to see if a student has multiple offenses across academic subjects. If this is not enough to discourage students from

cheating, students should be put on academic probation, where any further offense will lead to expulsion. But the problem will not really be solved until plagiarists and cheaters recognize that students are not only disrespecting the teachers, who devote themselves to the education of tomorrow’s leaders but also harming themselves by not learning the material. If students cheat through high school, their first year of college will be reduced to remedial classes, and they will be less able to execute future professions. Their relationships with teachers will also be harmed because the teachers will not be able to trust a student who has cheated. Students and teachers should have friendly relationships aimed towards the same goal — teaching students, not just tricking teachers and catching students.

PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY HUIMIN ZHANG


Pet Fanatics Rejoice!

PHOTOS COURTESY OF NICOLE HENARES, SYDNIE LAU, HOI LEUNG, MICHELE WINTERS AND THE SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION

We asked students and staff to share a picture of themselves with their animal friend for costume and look-alike contests. The winners are displayed in all of their furry and feathery purrfection. E E E K M I M L U Nicole Henares & U A T T Figaro S S Sydnie Lau & K O O O Michele Winters & Archimedes C C O L Freddie I have been Figaro’s human for over 18 years. He kept me company whilst writing many essays in college, and has kept me company whilst grading many essays as a teacher at Lowell. Figaro, aka “The Empurrrrrer”, is too fabulous for words- he sports a rhinestone collar and fancies himself a Grammar God. He often argues with me about the importance of the serial comma, and society’s increasing inability to know when to use who or whom. His favorite poets include Langston Hughes and Charles Bukowski.

“The Empurrrer” by Nicole Henares _______________ In indignant late night hunger my cat clacks around, he cla ck s arou nd and around, with little white paws like high heels and bright whisker s.

He is old, and deaf, and raggedy. His only complain ts are when his dish is em pty, or his water bowl has hairs in it. He doesn’t underst and sorrow: He is a neutered, ag ing, deaf cat, bu t, m ore of te n th an not, he is happy da mmit. If an y of us we re al l the man that he is catyes then the world could begin.

My cat, Freddie, is always ready for a concert — all he has to do is put on a white bow tie. I inherited Freddie from my mother when she could no longer live at home. I love Freddie because he is big, calm, and kind to his little brother, Michael, who is also dressed in black, but too shy to pose.

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Since I don’t have any pets at home, my pets are all of the animals I work with at the San Francisco Zoo. Archimedes, the Great Horned Owl, was my first raptor I’ve ever held. We share a special bond that not everyone gets to have with every animal... it’s awesome!

Hoi Leung & Momo

__________________________________ The unidentifiable blob of black is my doggy, Momo. She is definitely not as cute as the name sounds. It took her three years to accept my friend request on Facebook, four weeks to schedule a belly rub, and she makes me buy her new clothes every month or two. But having a fuzzy buddy sleep on my stomach whenever I watch TV makes it all worthwhile.

THE LOWELL BACKPAGE NOV. 9 2012


The Lowell November 2012  
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