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The Tam News — March 2018


March 2018




Hat Trick by Sophia Krivoruchko

04 news

Zeeman Stuns Students With Departure by Madeline Reilly & Skye Schoenhoeft

05 news

Conscious Kitchen Potentially Coming to Tam by Zoe Cowan Mock Trial Wins County for 23rd Year in a Row by Samuel Schnee Sexual Health Clinic Opens at Tam by Emily Spears Community Responds to Parkland Shooting by Shane Lavezzo

06 news

Cheerleaders to Attend Girls Games by Cassie Peterson

07 news

District Faces Budget Crisis by Yoav Paz-Priel

March 2018 — The Tam News

08 lifestyles

The three captains, Kira Cross, Emlen Janetos, and Reilly Johnson, led the girls’ varsity soccer team to an MCAL victory this season.

Do it for the Culture by Connor Dargan

09 lifestyles Grey Area by Benjy Wall-Feng

10 perspectives

Malmö, Sweden by Oscar Oste

11 features Labeled by Abby James & additional reporting by Skye Schoenhoeft

16 op/ed

Every Rose Has Its Thorn by Lola Leuterio

17 op/ed Supremely Stupid by John Overton

18 op/ed

Editorial: Power of the Panther by Staff Crackin’ and Slackin’ by the Opinion staff

19 creative Post-Parkland: A Poem by Fergus Campbell

20 sports

Hat Trick by Sophia Krivoruchko

22 sports R-K-Overachieving by Jack Loder

Dear Reader,

This month, we focused our issue on the power of representation, be it through blockbuster films like “Black Panther” or everyday self expression that bucks mainstream trends. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie has spoken of the danger of a “single story;” when we’re not exposed to a diversity of experiences, we risk falling prey to stereotypes. Nuanced representation can go a long way in combatting this danger. “Black Panther” has been lauded for the alternative it provides to most depictions of Africa and the black experience previously seen on film, and its runaway financial success and status as a cultural touchstone are evidence of how long overdue those depictions were. In our feature, we explore how fashion impacts the way others perceive you, and, in addition, how fashion is a means to express yourself. Many boys at Tam who dress in unconventional ways find that peers make conjectures about their sexuality based on their clothing choices; those interviewed, though encompassing a spectrum of sexual identity, all agreed that this phenomenon was deeply frustrating. The “single story” of men and fashion -- that those interested in it are gay or feminine -- fails in capturing why Tam students, regardless of sexuality and gender expression, express themselves through clothing. Providing alternative narratives and perspectives is an important step towards counteracting this stereotypes. As a publication, we’re aware of our power to offer alternative representations and recognize it as an important part of our journalistic duty. At times, that’s difficult. Our staff struggles with a lack of diversity, and we know all too well how homogeneity of perspective hurts both the creative and academic processes.

Marie Hogan

EDITORS IN CHIEF: Maddie Asch, Megan Butt, Marie

Hogan, & Dahlia Zail

NEWS: Milo Levine, Ethan Swope, & Benjy Wall-Feng LIFESTYLES: Fergus Campbell, Lola Leuterio, & Glo


FEATURES: Kennedy Cook, Michael Diamandakis, Samantha Ferro, & Ava Finn

OPINION: Samantha Locke, Ravi Joshi-Wander, Emily

Spears, & Zoe Wynn

SPORTS: Connor Dargan, Jack Loder, Miles Rubens, Eddie

Cover by: Kennedy Cook & Kylie Sakamoto On the Cover: Abby James explores the role that gender plays in both fashion and self expression among male Tam students.

GRAPHICS: Francesca Shearer, & John Overton COPY EDITORs: Griffin Chen & Annie Blackadar DESIGN: Kennedy Cook, Ava Finn, Elise Korngut, & Kylie


BUSINESS TEAM: Josh Davis, Shane Lavezzo, Jake PazPriel, & Aaron Young

SOCIAL MEDIA: Ava Finn, Sophia Krivoruchko, Jack Loder,

& Adam Tolson

PHOTOS: Ethan Swope

Schultz, & Adam Tolson

Tamalpais High School 700 Miller Avenue Mill Valley, CA 94941

Volume XIII, No. 1V March 2018 A publication of Tamalpais High School Established 1919

ADVISOR: Jonah Steinhart PRINTER: WIGT Printing

REPORTERS: Nicole Agosta, Camila Alfonso, Hannah Alpert, Elissa Asch, Annika Astengo, Ava Aufdencamp, Alec Bakhshandeh, Michael Balistreri, Griffin Barry, Isabella Bauer, Alex Bires, Rocky Brown, Sophia Bruinsma, Lila Bullock, Griffin Chen, Zoe Cowan, Hana Curphey, Ian Duncanson, Jordan Engel, Tessa Flynn, Celia Francis, Abigail Frazee, Leah Fullerton, Max Goldberg, Cassidy Holtzapple, Abigail James, Emlen Janetos, Charlotte Jones, Jamilah Karah, Kara Kneafsey, Elise Korngut, Sophia Krivoruchko, Jissell Kruse, Elan Levine, Logan Little, Josh Love, Johanna Meezan, Sebastian Meyer, Cal Mitchell, Amina Nakhuda, Gabriel Natale-Hjorth, Dara Noonan, John Overton, Yoav Paz-Priel, Luca Pelo, Cassandra Peterson, Collin Prell, Luke Rego, Darieus Rego, Madeline Reilly, Calvin Rosevear, Lucas Rosevear, Charlotte Rosgen, Thomas Russell, Alexander Saenz Zagar, Kylie Sakamoto, Samuel Schnee, Skye Schoenhoeft, Emma Schultz, Wilton Senel, Aryana Senel, Camille Shakirova, Adrian Shavers, Henry Soicher, Summer Solomon, Emily Spears, Joanne Spiegelman, Paisley Stocks, Jacob Swergold, Grace Tueros, Gisela Vicente Estrada, Maddie Wall, Daisy Wanger, Evan Wilch, Beckett Williams, Maxwell Williams, Niulan Wright, Aaron Young EDITORIAL BOARD: Maddie Asch, Megan Butt, Kennedy Cook, Michael Diamandakis, Marie Hogan, Ravi Joshi-Wander, Milo Levine, Samantha Locke, Ethan Swope, Aaron Young, & Dahlia Zail The Tam News, a student-run newspaper publication, distributed monthly, is an open, public forum for student expression and encourages letters and article contributions. The Tam News reserves the right to edit submissions for length and content. All content decisions are made by student editors. The Tam News is published monthly, though dates may vary. The Tam News is nonprofit and any proceeds and contributions are used in the production of the newspaper publication and for journalism education. Additional information concerning contributions or advertising can be obtained by writing to the address provided above or through our website. Copyright © 2017 by The Tamalpais News. All rights reserved. Reproduction is prohibited without written consent.

The Tam News — March 2018



Zeeman Stuns Students With Departure by Madeline Reilly & Skye Schoenhoeft


ath teacher David Zeeman did not show up to teach on the morning of February 2, and will not be returning to Tam for the remainder of the year, after administration told him he would not be offered a tenure contract for the fall semester of 2018. An email was sent by Zeeman to the parents of his students on February 2 notifying them of his departure.

Other students had a similar reaction. “I was very upset as he was one of my best math teachers I had ever had,” sophomore Jacob Ben-Shmuel said. “When I got the email, I was confused that they wouldn’t be bringing him back when he’s boosted the [math] program so much, as we all know it was in shambles. When he left midway through the year, I was baffled.” Outside what used to be Zeeman’s classroom a large poster of comments left by students was hung. The poster, titled “Why We Want Mr. Zeeman Next Year,” gave reasons from students such as: “He helped me feel good at math,” “He told jokes,” and “He pours his heart and soul into teaching us kids.” Math department teacher leader David Wetzel took down the poster on March 7. “He’s been gone for a while … I thought I would see if there was a way for me to get it to him. I’m sure he would appreciate the

comments on it,” Wetzel said. Some students said they feel they are now at a disadvantage. “Our class is behind. And I know that not everyone is a serious student at Tam, but for the people that are, not having a teacher to teach you is really frustrating because there is nothing we can do,” Mayo said. Farr noted in his email that Tam offers math tutoring for all students Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:00 to 5:00 in the library. But some students feel that this is not enough. “We had a whole unit taught to us in just [two] classes for a test, and a surprise algebra diagnostic without any warning …. I shouldn’t have to take time out of my schedule in order to learn subjects that were already supposed to be taught to me in class,” Ben-Shmuel said.♦

Former math teacher David Zeeman.


“It is with sad news that I inform you that I have been asked not to return to Tam next year. I wasn’t given a reason why,” Zeeman wrote in the email. Zeeman did not come to his classes after sending the message and has been temporarily replaced by substitute teacher Marly Ummal. Zeeman did not respond to a request for interview. Principal J.C. Farr emailed parents and students on February 9 to address Zeeman’s sudden disappearance. “Changes of teachers during the middle of the school year are never easy, and I recognize that this creates a potential interruption to your student’s education,” Farr’s message said. He declined to comment further. Many students expressed disappointment over Zeeman’s departure. “I was really surprised [when I found out],” sophomore Madeleine Mayo said. “Everyone in our class loved him and thought he was the best thing for the math department. When we found out he wouldn’t be returning we were all shocked because we had no idea why they would take away a teacher like him. Unlike previous math teachers, I actually learned with him.”


March 2018 — The Tam News

A poster with messages by students expressing support for Zeeman was briefly hung outside his classroom. PHOTO BY ETHAN SWOPE


NEWS FLASH Conscious Kitchen Potentially Coming to Tam by Zoe Cowan


n a recent email to the Tam High community, former PTSA Vice President of Senior Events and Tam High Foundation board member Eve Wirth announced that it might be possible to bring the Conscious Kitchen to Tam’s cafeteria. The Conscious Kitchen, a non-profit organization, describes itself as a healthier approach to a traditional school cafeteria, providing meals using FLOSN (Fresh, Local, Organic, Seasonal, and Non-GMO) ingredients. Conscious Kitchen was piloted in 2013 at Bayside MLK Academy in Marin City, and in 2015 expanded to also serve Willow Creek Academy, forming the nation’s first 100 percent organic, nonGMO school district. According to Wirth, Principal J.C. Farr has met with Superintendent David Yoshihara, who has given permission to investigate implementing the Conscious Kitchen.♦

Mock Trial Wins County for 23rd Year in a Row


by Samuel Schnee

am’s mock trial team narrowly beat Marin Academy (MA) to win the county for the 23rd consecutive year. Tam had gone undefeated in the rest of the county competition and had already beaten MA once. “The five rounds of competition that this team did were some of the best I’ve ever seen,” alumni coach Jack Budish said. Budish pointed out a particular moment when captain and Tam News reporter Elissa Asch made the opposing team’s defendant admit to being guilty. “It’s moments like that where you can hear a pin drop in the courtroom and we had a lot of those moments where it felt real and that isn’t an easy thing to do,” Budish said. “[When we won], we were all screaming and hugging and crying,” sophomore Devin Guinney said. “We like to say ‘One team, one family.’”♦

Sexual Health Clinic Opens at Tam


by Emily Spears

sexual health clinic opened at Tam, located next to the counseling department and as a part of the Tam wellness center, on February 16. The opening of the clinic was in direct response to a schoolwide survey in 2016 in which over half of Tam students reported that they would use reproductive health services on campus if they were provided. Jessica Colvin, the wellness director for the Tamalpais Union High School District, explained the purpose of opening up the clinic at Tam. “These services are available to teenagers ages 12 and over in the state of California, [and other resources are available], but we wanted to make it easier for students to access support,” Colvin said. The clinic is free and confidential and any record of an appointment is kept separate from school records.♦

Community Responds to Parkland Shooting by Shane Lavezzo

Tam community members held a vigil for the victims of the Parkland, Fla. school shooting on February 15. PHOTO BY ETHAN SWOPE


uring the February 27 Tamalpais Union High School District Board of Trustees meeting, members of the Tam community discussed the February 14 school shooting in Parkland, Fla. Tam High student representative Jacob Renneisen commented on the school’s response. “Tam High had a vigil after the shooting at Parkland. It was very well attended. We wanted to give our full support for the students that survived. We wanted to let the families of the students that did not

[survive] know that they have our thoughts and prayers,” Renneisen said. Renneisen also explained the students’ thoughts on gun control. “We as students are very concerned about how easily accessible guns are .... Kids my age, 18, can go purchase a violent weapon and do a lot of damage. We fully support the board putting out a no guns on campus statement,” he said. Superintendent David Yoshihara attempted to ease the anxiety of community

members after the shooting. “I and our principals assure our parents that we take multiple measures to ensure our students’ safety, working closely with law enforcement, our partners at the county office, and the local resources of our excellent counselors and wellness staff,” he said. Yoshihara explained that there are no easy answers, but expressed that conversations are happening at the local, state, and national level. Tam held a lockdown drill on March 1.♦

The Tam News — March 2018



Cheerleaders to Attend Girls Games by Cassie Peterson


n February 6, Tam’s cheerleading team began cheering for the girls varsity basketball team for the first time in over 20 years, after the administration received complaints from a parent about potential Title IX violations. Going forward, the administration will require that cheerleaders adjust their schedule to attend an equal amount of boys and girls games during the basketball season. “Let’s say the cheerleaders show up and cheer for the boys on a Tuesday night,

tually started to say how it had always upset them that nobody ever supported them. They always felt a little stupid saying it out loud and thought it was petty to mention it, so they never did, but when this happened they all felt like they should’ve done something sooner.” Many factors contributed to the absence of cheerleaders at the girls games, one of them being the school’s lack of cheerleading coaches, meaning that it could only field one cheerleading squad.

“It just made me realize how unfair, discriminatory and even offensive it was, and this was when I decided to call the school.” -Jennifer Sheetz then on a Thursday night game of that week they should be cheering for the girls,” assistant principal David Rice said. This new cheerleading schedule is an effort to spread school spirit equally across both genders and provide a similar experience at games. It also fulfills Tam’s legal obligation to Title IX, a law that enforces equal opportunities in school-funded sports for all students, whether they are male or female. Tam High parent and Mill Valley attorney Jennifer Sheetz brought the situation to the administration’s attention as being a possible violation of Title IX. “It’s always been weird to me, the fact that growing up, my high school didn’t have a girls soccer team, so I had to play with the boys. It’s even weirder now, because it’s 2018 and there still aren’t equal opportunities for girls,” Sheetz said. She was watching the Tam vs. Marin Catholic girls varsity basketball game a few weeks ago with a group of sixth graders, including her daughter, when one of them asked, “Why aren’t the cheerleaders cheering?” “It just made me realize how unfair, discriminatory and even offensive it was, and this was when I decided to call the school,” Sheetz said. “While this was going on, the girls on the team, especially the seniors, ac-


March 2018 — The Tam News

When the cheerleading program was reformed at Tam eight years ago, after a multi-year absence, it started out with six girls, according to cheerleading coach Danielle Hirsch. The team has slowly grown since, with 18 girls on the team last year and 24 this year. However, there is only one coach, which makes it difficult for the team to continue to expand. Hirsch added that with more coaches, a larger team would be possible, and the cheerleaders would have been able to cheer for the girls much earlier on.

Hirsch has been looking forward to cheering for the girls since she took over the team this year. “We’ve always been excited to [cheer for them], the only thing is I’m just one person, and we didn’t have another coach,” Hirsch said. “An assistant coach could be a possibility. They would just have to be cleared by the district, but I’m still in search of one. I’m thrilled we were able to make this happen anyway.” Next year, the plan is to have two cheerleading squads that will be able to cheer for both teams, ensuring that there will always be a squad available, regardless of the teams playing. “This way, we’ll be able to provide the same atmosphere for both genders,” Rice said. In doing so, there is a chance that fewer resources will be devoted to the boys varsity basketball team. “I’d be fine with it,” senior and boys varsity basketball player Jack Coen said. “My team is focused on the game when we are playing. It’s not like we don’t know the cheerleaders are supporting us, which we appreciate, it’s just that we are concentrated on playing at that time.” Girls varsity basketball players were enthusiastic about the new cheerleading support. “We’re all really happy,” freshman girls varsity basketball player Emma Bowser said. “The cheerleaders bring a whole new energy, and because not a lot of people come to our games, it’s new and different to have other students supporting us.”♦

The cheerleading team will begin cheering at girls games after admin received a complaint from a parent pointing out possible Title IX violations. PHOTO BY ETHAN SWOPE


District Faces Budget Crisis by Yoav Paz-Priel


n a recent letter to the Tamalpais Union High School District (TUHSD), the Marin County Office of Education warned the school district that its spending projections indicate that it could descend into insolvency as soon as the 2020-21 school year. As the second interim budget report deadline for the TUHSD approaches this March, board members have been developing a structural deficit plan as a response to the formal warning from the county, which has directed the TUHSD board to approve a deficit spending and recovery plan as a potential response to the worst-case scenario of financial debt. The letter advises that at the current rate of spending, the district will deplete its financial reserves below the required minimum within the next three years. The crisis was catalyzed by three central changes that the district has experienced in the past few years. In a January 23 board meeting, deputy director of the Marin County Office of Education Terena Mares addressed the necessity of a budget approval, mentioning these critical dynamics that have brought on the decline in reserves and funding. According to Mares, this reduction is “caused by the rising pension costs … an increase in growth in your enrollment … and the facility demands that [growth] places on your budget.” These pressure points, while not under the control of the district, have placed significant strain on the district’s finances and have serious implications for the future of TUHSD. The sharp decrease in budget projections is startling, as the present trajectory indicates that in the upcoming years the TUHSD will experience “an 82 percent decline in [the district’s] fund balance,” according to Mares. In response to the warning issued by the Marin County Office of Education, the TUHSD board has begun meeting in budget workshops, which are attended by board members as well as Mares, who represents the county in the negotiations. Stressing the importance of diverse input, district superintendent David Yoshihara said a discussion committee would include “the board, administration staff, students, labor groups…our parent groups,

District superintendent David Yoshihara unveiled a plan to address the impending financial deficit on January 31. PHOTO COURTESY OF TAM NEWS ARCHIVES

[and] our community groups.” During the first of these workshops on January 31, Yoshihara outlined a plan to stabilize the budget and introduce a deficit structure. In the meeting, he detailed an aggressive timeline for closing the structural

At its current rate of spending, the district will deplete its financial reserves below the required minimum within the next three years. gap of expenditures and revenues in two years, and then raising the budget reserves from 4 percent in 2019 to the baseline of 17 percent by 2021. To stabilize the structural gap, expenses would need to sharply decrease over the next two school years, bringing the actual deficit in the budget to zero. Raising the budget to the 17 percent goal would require the district to quadruple its funds over the course of just two years, which is roughly equivalent to a net surplus of $6 million each year to be added to the reserve fund. Such an aggressive plan, even if it is tem-

pered to span five or six years rather than four, would necessitate both immediate and far-reaching expense reduction. This could potentially involve a hiring freeze, layoffs, or downsizing programs. “Any kind of meaningful deficit reduction plan is going to look catastrophic,” board member Chuck Ford said. “We’re talking about jobs, we’re talking about positions, we’re talking about whole programs.” Yoshihara remained noncommittal in the initial finance workshop, preferring to wait until an analysis of the district’s expenditures was complete in order to ascertain the severity of the cuts necessary. After this, he said, “The board in the next fiscal year can then indicate the level of either through attrition or layoffs for that to take place.” These potential cuts would be the foreseeable path to achieve the reduction necessary to flatten expenditure, but revenue still needs to stay $6 million above the lowered spending in order to stabilize reserves. The board has acknowledged that these changes will have a significant impact on the entire district. “This will affect the program, this will affect the students, and what expense they’re going to get and I would argue the quality of instruction,” Yoshihara said.♦

The Tam News — March 2018



Do it for the Culture by Connor Dargan


018 has treated hip hop group Migos, made up of rappers Offset, Takeoff, and Quavo, well so far; following the release of their newest album, “Culture II,” the group was featured on the cover of “Rolling Stone” and reached the Billboard’s top 200. As of February 7, the album was sitting in the number three slot, with a billion streams in just 20 days. The instantly iconic album “Culture” helped the popular hip-hop group Migos break into the spotlight in 2017. Now firmly established at the top of the hip-hop genre, Migos faces its biggest challenge yet: staying on top and producing a follow-up album to rival the quality of the original “Culture.” While “Culture II” got us hooked early with the releases “Stir Fry” and “Motorsport,” does the rest of the album deliver on the hype? One of the keys to the success of “Culture II” is its innovative touch and willingness to experiment with tone and pace. “Stir Fry” was an example of this technique, and with a little help from producer Pharrell Williams, the song delivered an unorthodox beat that allowed Migos to incorporate its smooth and sharp vocals. This creativity is further showcased in “Narcos,” which blends seemingly-outdated instrumentals with a modern electronic rhythm to establish a song that feels multicultural. However, no hip-hop album is complete without its features, and “Culture II” has plenty of big names to get excited about. The featured songs fall in line with the diversity of the album’s sound, with each song falling into a different category. Pick-me-up songs like “CC” (featuring Gucci Mane) and “Too Playa” (featuring 2 Chainz) maintain a steady pace, allowing the artists to rap freely to their own style, while “Notice Me” (featuring Post Malone) offers a more emotional draw as Malone sings a soulful hook that brings out feel-


March 2018 — The Tam News

ings of sorrow and endurance from the rest of Migos. One of the biggest criticisms of Migos is that of the larger genre of modern rap: the same, mumbling lyrics regarding the same, worn topics. While this is, admittedly, found in some of the faster songs written to get people hooked, the criticism does not hold true for the rest of the album. There are layers upon layers of emotions, ideas, and expressions within this album. “Culture II” is an outlier from the “mumble rap” genre in that its songs deliver a different message with every listen. Take “Crown the Kings” for example, a song where at first glance it seems like the Migos are rapping about their jewelry and accomplishments. However, after listening to the song over, it becomes clear that the song’s real message pertains to the struggles the group overcame to reach the “throne” of the rap genre. Whether it’s a party starter like “Supastars,” workout tunes like “BBO,” or a slower and more sentimental song like “Movin’ Too Fast”, Culture II offers a broad range of styles for any mood. The faster songs like “Walk It Talk It”

and “Open It Up” layer Offset’s hard-hitting rap and Takeoff’s force between Quavo’s flowing chorus. In the album’s slower songs, the lyrics become more enunciated and powerful, as in “Top Down on da NAWF,” which pays homage to the group’s birthplace of north Atlanta. Quavo tells of the hardships Migos had to endure during their rise, singing “Boulders on my shoulder, weight’s on me/I will never fold up when it’s on me.” The message becomes motivational, fitting to the song’s story and the narrative of the album as a whole. “Culture II” opened up a whole new auditory world for rap, providing a foundation for new artists to build upon. The myriad of new styles and beats opens up the genre as a platform to be experimented on by bold producers and talented rappers who continue to set the pace for the future. Music is best when fueled by emotion, and “Culture II” encompasses a wide spectrum of moods and feelings for any circumstance. Migos said it best: do it for the culture. ♦




y first brush with the cultural tsunami that is “Fifty Shades of Grey” was in fourth grade, when I noticed in one of the magazines my class was gleefully vivisecting for collage fodder a book review with the alarming first sentence: “There are three kinds of sex — sex in the kitchen, sex in the bedroom, and sex after reading ‘Fifty Shades of Grey.’” Prepubescent me, bewildered and frightened, filed that information away for later use. Smash cut to 2018 and the trilogy is a ridiculous success, successful enough, at least, that the third movie adaptation is now oozing its wanton glory in theaters across the world. That movie is called “Fifty Shades Freed.” It is one of the best things I’ve ever seen. The first thing to note, the thing which must be established to show that I as a reviewer have something approaching taste, is that “Fifty Shades Freed” fails on every possible level. It tries to broaden its scope, too, to expand its audience from sexually repressed housewives and people who haven’t discovered the Internet, and in doing so manages to fail on levels that no one even expected it to attempt. Remember the three kinds of sex? This movie has none of them. The second sex scene is 30 seconds of its participants writhing, fully clothed, in a parking lot. There are too many cop-outs and fruitless buildups to keep track of. And that would be fine, except the entire point of “Fifty Shades” is that it’s about sex. It’s twelve-dollar softcore pornography, down to the quality of the script and the dedication of the actors. But especially given that more time is devoted to licking Ben & Jerry’s from Jamie Dornan’s throbbing pecs than to any substantive sex acts — and given that in a movie ostensibly about BDSM the farthest its protagonists go is handcuffs — it’s hard to justify seeing the movie for that reason. So what else does it have to offer? A gripping plot, maybe. “Fifty Shades Freed” opens with our protagonists, Ana (née Steele) and Christian Grey, getting married. What follows is the first instance of a recurring theme of well-intentioned montages; this one, a catalog of their globetrotting marital bliss, behaves in form and function like a Cialis commercial. (Later montages are equally dubious, es-


pecially the sex scenes, which feature copious amounts of background music, as though the director was afraid to let his subjects speak for themselves. I’m not sure I blame him.) Their post-honeymoon activities include but are not limited to: buying a house; fighting over buying a house; having sex; going to work; fighting while at work; having sex; going on vacation; fighting on vacation; and having sex. If that sounds tedious, it’s because it is. Probably at some point their constant bickering was supposed to complement their constant psychosexual power struggle, but for all practical purposes it serves only to emphasize that they have nothing approaching chemistry or even a plausible relationship. So “Fifty Shades Freed,” recognizing perhaps its failures as a romance, decides to become an action movie. Which is to say that Christian’s adoptive sister is kidnapped by Ana’s ex-boss Jack Hyde, who in a twist worthy of M. Night Shyamalan is revealed to have been plotting revenge on Christian ever since a childhood mishap at the orphanage in which they both grew up, making Hyde’s name somehow less derivative than his origin story (ripped almost verbatim from, of all things, “Meet the Robinsons”). There are a couple of car chases, one of which contains the movie’s most thrilling stunt: Ana nudging her car very slightly outside the edge of the lane. The rest of the action doesn’t fare much better. In the movie’s climax Ana is slapped once by Hyde, and, after that blow renders her prostrate in agony, kicked once in the stomach. This is apparently enough to send her to the surgery ward for enough time that the camera finds it necessary to linger on her heartbeat monitor, hoping, perhaps, as we do, that something of consequence will finally befall any significant character. Then she recovers and she and Christian live happily ever after. The easiest way of describing my unbridled passion for this movie is to say that it functions inexplicably as an accidental caricature of the human condition. One has only to whip out his or her satin blindfold and throw a dart at any of the film’s scenes to be able to gape at the audacity with which E. L. James and her coterie of fetishists absorb and perfectly reflect the state of

culture in 2018. “Fifty Shades Freed” is in turns an impassioned defense of the privileged; a twenty-minute Audi commercial; a hesitant step toward female empowerment, followed by fifty steps in the opposite direction; and a love letter to the hypersexualization of media. It’s the perfect vessel through which to skewer these things, too, because it’s impossible to care about any of the characters. Ana is an aimless millennial who has married into everything she could ever want; Christian is a sugar daddy outshined in looks and in personality by Ana’s bodyguard, Sawyer, who resembles B. J. Novak if B. J. Novak were Adonis reincarnate; and both leads have the emotional maturity of middle school students. The movie isn’t so bad that it’s funny, but it is somehow so bad that it acts as a total deconstruction of everything wrong with cinema. There exist tropes in films which have been overused to the point that a single glance leaks laziness or unoriginality, and “Fifty Shades Freed” revels, even luxuriates, in them to the extent that those tropes are laid bare, and to that end it’s informative and frequently amusing. (And neither should the actual experience of seeing the movie be ignored. What better way to spend two hours than in the company of five middle-aged couples, two elderly couples, three teenage girls, and a graying man with unfortunate facial hair?) So it’s not the earthshaking work of art my ten-year-old self dreamed it to be — it’s actually as far removed from that as is physically possible — but still. When Ana and Christian work out the kinks in their marriage, they act as a mirror for America working out the kinks in its culture, and if that’s not beautiful in any conventional or literal or figurative sense it’s still something. My inner goddess approves. ♦

The Tam News — March 2018



A New Perspective:

Malmö, Sweden Above: Oscar Oste, a junior at Tam, spent his first seven years in Sweden before moving to the US.


By Oskar Oste


ej, jag heter Oskar och min familj är från driven culture is apparent to any newcomSverige. Hi, my name is Oskar and I’m a er, and it’s a paradigm that’s easy to get

junior at Tam. My family is from Sweden. When someone asks me the all-too -frequent question, “Which place do I like more, Sweden or the US?,” I must hesitate and first think to myself, “Who is the audience?” If it was a Swedish person posing the question, I would of course insist that I am an American. Conversely, if I am speaking to anyone else, I will present myself as a Swede. Now, that’s not a matter of pride, rather a situational tool I enjoyed utilizing. Though I am a dual citizen and have now spent more time in the U.S., I grew up in Sweden. My childhood from the age of five belonged with one culture: that’s what makes character, and builds foundation of a person. So when I moved to the U.S. after seven years in Sweden, I instantly felt the culture shock. Perhaps the first thing I noticed that was different about America was the heavy dependence on commercialism. I was at first stunned by the fifty foot LED screens informing me how to improve my life with materialistic products. These products grow old, and you start to wish you never saw them. The money-


March 2018 — The Tam News

distracted by. But everyone loves money. Right? Well, actually, Sweden is a social democratic country, meaning there is a strong political emphasis on equality, achieved through higher taxes on those with higher income. This ideology has had a huge impact on Sweden’s culture, so bragging about money is highly frowned upon. That is not to say that people don’t like money—they just keep the details to themselves. (Unless you are from Stockholm, where a high concentration of wealthy people live and don’t mind sharing this with anyone who cares to listen. In Sweden they have been deemed the “stekare.”) The rise of the Inter-


net has created a world in which everything is becoming more interconnected, and huge shifts in culture now permit everything to evolve. I have seen throughout my life the merging of multiple cultures as a result of this change. Because of a new, globalized connection, people from around the world are now drawn to America’s dominant culture. It is beautiful and promising, but I hope we do not forget the lessons from cultures that have stood the test of time, such as the effort in Swedish culture to practice humility.

Tack så mycket för er tid!

Thank you for your time! ♦



By Abby James Additional reporting by Skye Schoenhoeft Photos by Ethan Swope The Tam News — March 2018




he girl walked up to Senior Yonni Hirner during

passing period, noticed his purple terry cloth shirt, fluorescent Supreme hoodie, black corduroy pants, and said, “I like your style. Do you like women?” Dressing outside of the high school norm often makes people question Hirner’s sexuality, due to the misconception that a male who is stylish is also gay, a thought deeply ingrained in our society. However. Hirner and other students including seniors Jesse Newman and Eli Rosenthal and freshman Jake Cohen,are all taking strides to break down the stereotyes about men’s fashion, whether or not the stereotypes pinpoint their sexuality or lifestyle. In doing so, they face a plethora of criticisms and accusations regarding their sexual preference and lifestyle choices every day. The connection between style and sexuality may stem from the considerable amount of gay designers in the fashion world. It’s also tied with gender roles, including the historical reality that fashion and apparel are a woman’s concern. This stereotype is so complex and deeply rooted in the present day fashion industry that it’s difficult to distinguish when it first started. According to The New York Times, men in the 19th century had to follow a strict dress code; those who revolted against this proper attire were perceived as lazy, unkempt, and lower class. In the 21st century, the same type of restrictions still exist, but now if a male shows even the slightest concern about what he is wearing, he is seen as feminine and potentially gay. Those who take pride in what they wear aren’t


March 2018 — The Tam News

the only ones who notice the issue at hand. “I think that women’s fashion is much more emphasized in high school,” senior Raven Twilling said. “Teen girls gain respect from their peers for having unique or hip style, whereas boys do not. Fashion is stereotyped as a feminine thing, and I think that’s why boys tend to dress in a more homogenous manor, with the aim of fitting in rather than standing out.” Cohen, who identifies as queer, has taken pride in being one of the few teenage boys at Tam who enjoys standing out. He has a more extravagant style than the average teenager, regularly wearing latex pants, a leopard print jacket, band t-shirts, and the occasional pair of high heels. Due to this style, people often assume he’s a member of the LGBTQ+ community without asking him. Solely based on his appearance and clothing, strangers frequently make assumptions and even approach him to ask about his sexuality. “I’ll have people who don’t know me, start a conversation with me, and then bring up the fact that I’m gay, and I’m always like, ‘Oh, I don’t remember telling you that,’” Cohen said. “I think that [assuming sexual identity] just adds to the whole culture of homophobia and stereotyping. When really clothing has nothing to do with gender, and I think that’s something that people don’t really understand, and especially [that it] has nothing to do with our sexuality. But sadly that’s not how our society really sees it yet.”

Jake Cohen

Features Even students who don’t identify as LGBTQ, including Newman, Hirner, and Rosenthal, are stereotyped or have their sexualities assumed based on their outfits. “I do know that people have believed that I’m gay before because of what I wear,” Rosenthal said. “But I’ve never thought that ‘Oh because I’m wearing this, somebody’s gonna think I’m gay.’” Rosenthal’s signature style consists of monochromatic tones, tight skinny jeans, kimonos, stripes, and silver chains. Since Rosenthal’s style is usually more laid back, he receives fewer critical comments than those with a more audacious style. “There’s definitely some negative connotations with certain clothes,” Newman said. “If you wear all black, people think you’re emo. If you wear flight pants people think you’re a hipster. If you wear band t-shirts, even if you like the band, people might think that you’re just hopping on a trend. I have long hair,

people think I smoke weed, [and] I don’t smoke weed, that’s just how I express myself…. Sometimes adults, or adult males just kinda assume I’m feminine, or call me ‘Pretty Boy’ because of the way I dress. I feel like the older generation is more worried about masculinity, and they’re more conservative, so they don’t really understand when people wear stuff like this and aren’t gay.” Cohen too has faced many difficult interactions and sometimes even threats due to what he’s wearing. “Whenever I walk through the halls, or I’m in public, or traveling people always give me these hostile looks of either resent, anger, amusement, or even like they want to physically touch or hurt me,” he said. “I used to be scared, and sometimes still am. I won’t deny myself that emotion, but at the end of the day what I’m wearing does not affect anyone else but me. And if somebody makes what I’m wearing about themselves then I cannot spend time with them. It’s taken me a long time to realize how to put myself first in that way,” Cohen said. Yet the issue Cohen discusses doesn’t seem to be taken too seriously by other students. “Tam has a big problem with ‘jokes,’” senior and Student Body President Robbie Samec said. “Members of the LGBTQ+ [community] are stuck at the middle of social trends. It ranges from calling everything [bad] gay, to making fun of people who don’t believe in only two genders.”

Eli Rosenthal

The Tam News — March 2018



For additional photos and an exclusive video with Jake Cohen visit

Yonni Hirner

But these offensive jokes don’t just affect the LGBTQ+ community. Rosenthal has also experienced similar judgmental comments from his his peers. “The biggest response that people give me is probably just, ‘What the hell are you wearing? What is that?’ I have a couple close friends who completely embrace my style, so it’s not from them. But then I have some friends who will just kinda dig at me, like a joking dig. And sometimes those questions or digs just really make me feel bad.” With little support from peers, many students find themselves shielding their self expression from others.


March 2018 — The Tam News

“You shouldn’t suppress how you want to present yourself to the world, through your clothing, because of your personality, just based on what you think others want you to do,” Cohen said. Hirner stands with Cohen on this issue, understanding yet disregarding the unnecessary pressure to dress a certain way. “As long as you feel confident in what you’re wearing, then that’s all that matters,” he said. “It doesn’t matter what anyone else is thinking or what their opinion is. If you want to wear something, wear it.”


Jesse Newman

The Tam News — March 2018



Every Rose Has its Thorn


man appears on the screen: greyish brown hair, blue eyes, black tux. He holds a rose in his hand and tries his best to flash a smile at the camera. Intense music plays in the background, broken up by a monologue of the man’s journey to find true love. You aren’t listening to him ,though, because if you’re anything like the rest of America, he isn’t why you’re watching “The Bachelor.” Instead, you’re watching to see the plight of 29 young women desperately competing for the love of one 36 year old man. Is “The Bachelor” entertaining? Yes. Is it horrible? Most definitely. I’m sure most viewers, myself included, know this and watch the show regardless. But maybe there is more to our endorsement of this show than the loss of a small amount of dignity. The blatant exploitation of human emotion that is displayed in “The Bachelor” is damaging societal values on a deeper level than we would like to consider. What does it say about Americans that we watch a show that degrades women and perpetuates patriarchal ideals on how women should look? What does is reflect upon our culture that we support choreographed, emotionally charged situations involving the consumption of large amounts of alcohol? In light of recent developments in feminism, the amount of effort and passion put into gaining respect and recognition of women has never been more evident. Although our society is still grappling with important issues involving gender equality, we have made significant progress. So when you see the first episode of “The Bachelor,” where woman after woman is “introduced” via a clip of her walking down a beach in a bikini, the disconnect between the supposed progress made by society and the values of the show is jarring. The cameras pans up and down the contestant’s body, giving the viewer plenty of time to form judgements before she can even say her name. When the women finally meet our Season 22 bachelor, Arie, the pageantry

Heard in the Tam Hallways by the Opinion Staff


by Lola Leuterio


is in full swing; the women are clad in red carpet style dresses prominently displaying each contestants body, long professionally highlighted ringlets, and false eyelashes pasted onto painted and shadowed doe shaped eyes. And it continues throughout the season with highly questionable group dates that include dressing up in revealing costumes—a fake-boxing match, mimicked dog show, or a public burlesque display, to name a few. But glammed-up women in expensive cocktail dresses and skimpy bathing suits are not enough to quench our thirst for entertainment. The producers know they will need more and they know how to deliver it: lots and lots of alcohol. An endless supply. All day. All night. Because “The Bachelor” wouldn’t be “The Bachelor” without wine-drenched dinner dates, mimosa infused pool parties, and martini fueled rose ceremonies. It’s almost too simple. Toss a couple dozen vulnerable women into extremely uncomfortable situations, offer them drinks, and wait for the onslaught of tears, fights, jealousy, break ups and no end of other dramatic encounters to materialize. One can’t help but to wonder why the pro-

“Fighting your bros drunk is the manliest thing in the world.” -Student Center

March 2018 — The Tam News

ducers are so comfortable throwing away the respect that women have worked years to gain. “The Bachelor’s” use and abuse of human emotion is a another common theme throughout the season. It may seem unbelievable, but when these women say they are really and truly falling for this guy they met just days ago, they mean it. It is the fault of the producers that they feel like this; when access to the outside world is completely cut off the and one is sequestered in isolated locations in which the main conversation revolves around the splendor of one average guy, regular emotions are blown into crazy proportions. But that doesn’t change the fact that this is how they feel. The show broadcasts these real feelings that are often difficult to manage to the world for the purpose of our entertainment. We eat it up, laughing at them, crying with them. It doesn’t matter which; the point is that there is no respect involved. The season 22 finale, which aired on March 6, may finally have delivered Harrison’s long standing promise of ultimate drama—but the payoff felt cheap. The Bachelor proposed to one of the two remaining contestants and dumped the other, only to change his mind, break up with his fiance, and pursue the one to which he said goodbye a few weeks before. An unedited version of this break up was broadcast to 7.8 million viewers. Imagine: millions of people, glued to their TV screens watching nothing more than a woman sitting on a couch crying for half an hour. Forget about which season wins the “Most Dramatic” award—this season made it to the hall of fame simply by containing the most glaring example of emotional exploitation in Bachelor history. Yes, the contestants sign up for this show and supposedly understand what they are getting themselves into. But I’m not so sure that makes us, the viewers, any less guilty of disrespecting women as we endorse this irresponsible production. ♦

“He’s good at every sport, including “You’d be surprised Fortnite.” how many dogs in Marin -Upper Keyser are on Prozac” -Wood Hall


Supremely Stupid by John Overton


o you have money? Here’s a tip: spend it all on nothing. I’m not kidding. It’s worth it. Who needs things three weeks’ worth of lunch when you could spend roughly $480 on a plain white t-shirt with a little red logo on the front. No, only an idiot would put their health before their wardrobe. Everyone knows that being cool is everything, and if you don’t have the social skills to make a lot of friends, the only way you can ever hope to be valued by another person in your entire life is to show how rich you are by wearing expensive clothing. In fact, being cool is so important that you shouldn’t be worrying, or even thinking, about anything else. If you get too caught up with distractions like school or sleep, you’ll forget about all the effort and money you’ve put in to trying to impress people who think they’re better than you, and as soon as that happens, everyone will notice. And that is certainly not cool. I have been spending every minute online shopping, and every dollar I can on

“Kylie Jenner’s baby video was 11 minutes of Glory” -Pool

Supreme clothing for the last few weeks now, and I can tell you, it feels great. Sure, I haven’t been sleeping at all, I’m pretty tired, I can’t walk in a straight line, I can’t finish a single sentence, I can’t tell whether my eyes are open or closed, and I’m kind of prone to unpredictable seizures. But I’ve gotta say: when I’m walking around school in my Supreme hoodie and nothing else, soaking in the looks of admiration, it all feels worth it. That is, when I can see the other people; half of the time I’m so tired I’m hallucinating... I don’t remember my name, or where my classes are, but I definitely remember my favorite brands. Oh yeah! One other thing I do remember is that my parents are cutting off my allowance: they said something about a “problem” that I had, and I have no idea what they’re referring to, but I know that this can’t be good, because if I lose funding, I’m gonna have to actually work for money so I can continue to stay cool. That brings up my other point (I almost forgot!). If you wear an article of clothing once, you can never wear it again. Ever.

It’s just not cool to wear anything a second time, and as I’ve already explained your life is meaningless if you’re not cool. So every day, when I get home, and sometimes even in the middle of the school, I take off my clothes, put them in a pile, and burn them. Since I’m running out of money, I think I’m going to have to start selling my limbs on the black market so that I can keep up with the prices of my clothing. If I’m lucky, I’ll be able to get Supreme to send me free stickers that I’ll be able to put on my wheelchair, which will make me cooler for sure. I’ve been thinking this over for about a minute, and the only downside I can think of is not having arms to put through my shirt sleeves, which might be a problem. Ah, whatever. Probably not a big deal. I wonder when the next Supreme drop is...♦

“She’s a pathological liar, if I remember correctly from Elementary school.”

“Sometimes I say stuff and hope no one from the Tam News is around to record it.” -Keyser Landing



The Tam News — March 2018




EDITORIAL: Power of the Panther

ust over a century ago, the white supremacist propaganda film “Birth of a Nation” overtook the cultural consciousness. President Woodrow Wilson was so taken with the now-infamous racist film that he had it screened in the White House, and enough Americans were inspired by its rhetoric that the Klu Klux Klan, previously inactive, experienced a major resurgence. In the most tragic sense, “Birth of a Nation” was an early lesson in the power of film to shape culture and politics, a reminder that we often reflect pop culture, rather than it reflecting us. “Black Panther” is a far cry from “Birth of a Nation.” Where the latter traded in hateful racial stereotypes, the former subverts them, ultimately delivering a positive message of empowerment and representation. But in considering why “Black Panther” has struck such a chord throughout the country, it’s important to recognize

just how impactful film can be. Films, for better or for worse, inform our political landscape. In “Black Panther,” that power is leveraged to its fullest, and most positive, extent. “Black Panther” grossed over 400 million dollars in just four days, satisfying a need for a different kind of big-budget storytelling in the country’s cinematic landscape. That need was for color: actors of color who play heroes of color, characters who possess abilities as rich and inspiring as their on-screen white counterparts; places of color that don’t resemble Western ideals or European infrastructure; directors of color who can bring empathy and awareness to the film’s vision; writers of color and designers of color, who base contributions on their own previously unheard experiences. Now that “Black Panther” has responded to that call for color, analysis of

Crackin’ and Slackin’


March 2018 — The Tam News

the film is rightly revolving around its unprecedented blackness. This means a lot. It means that the film provided a successful showcase of voices all too rarely heard on and off the screen. It means that when minority filmmakers assume major positions behind cameras and have the freedom to execute visions shaped by who they are, then the final products thrive, shifting the frustration and neglect of so many underrepresented groups of people, and fueling meaningful conversations about equality. “Black Panther” presents the modern alternative to previous modes of anti-racism in film—eschewing middle American respectability for unapologetic black excellence—and its runaway financial success demonstrates the demand by audiences of all colors for these types of narratives. But “Black Panther” does more than provide representation for people of color. It also offers a view of Africa that runs counter to many Americans’ perceptions of the continent; whether consciously or not, many view Africa as underdeveloped, impoverished, and in need of rescue by more “developed” countries. With diversity beginning to be recognized in Hollywood, it is up to the scores of current professionals, and younger generations—Tam students included—to continue expanding and building off of the “Panther” platform and carry that diversity off the screen and into their lives. The long-term impact of “Black Panther” has yet to be seen, but regardless of what happens next, the film isn’t just a flash in the pan. At the very least, it’s proved to major studios the financial and critical viability–even advantage–of films headlined by majority casts of color and of narratives created and directed by people of color. As consumers, our buying choices give us power. It’s up to us to use that power for good, by choosing to support films featuring underrepresented groups and stories financially. Even if superhero movies aren’t your “thing,” you can seek out other forms of media that amplify the voices of marginalized peoples. It might not seem like much, and it’ll never beat real political activism, but it’s a start. An added bonus? It’s pretty fun. ♦


Post-Parkland Poem by Fergus Campbell

You, who inhabit a country with clout So stifling, so total, yet clouded by doubt That the dream advertised Is a parcel of lies And the problems evinced in this grand experiment Outweigh any benefits of living through it You, a student, who must attend school As children bleed out and we’re taken for fools By the men on the hill in that far-away land Where the NRA’s dollars are seized by fat hands That gesture and sweat and attempt to explain What cannot be defended or wished away You, modern child, equipped with your phone A gateway to hate left for so long unknown To the internet’s depths, where theories abound That David Hogg is a crisis actor the Democrats found You, likely traveler, bolstered by wealth Who dines in fine cities and toasts to good health In countries with gun laws far stricter than here Like Australia, which hasn’t had a shooting in twenty goddamn years You, who are level-headed, eager to listen Understanding of how mental health factors in A valid and helpful and honest perspective Nonetheless warped to fuel right-wing objectives Which also flout plans for arming school staff When bullets wreak havoc, no matter their path You, who might joke about kids in your class That would shoot up Tam High if given the chance When Nikolas Cruz was just such a kid And wanted to kill and bought a gun and did You, future voter, future leader, future parent Should be angry, enraged, riled up, incandescent Call senators, join movements, form coalitions! So that U.S. Congress enacts better decisions You should fight long after news trucks drive away And stop only when it’s clearly okay To walk, skate, bike onto campus and know That you don’t have to worry about making it home. ♦

The Tam News — March 2018



Hat Trick by Sophia Krivoruchko

Captains from left to right: Kira Cross, Emlen Janetos, and Reilly Johnson.



n February 10th, Tam girls varsity soccer beat Branson 4-2. Leading up to the huge MCAL win against Branson, Tam trailed Branson by two goals. Both teams were tied 2-2 before advancing into penalty kicks, where Tam triumphed and won MCALs. “To come back and beat Branson after trailing 2-0 was amazing. Especially since they had given up only one goal all season,” Coach Shane Kennedy said. Tam advanced further, competing against Redwood in NCS where they lost 2-0, ending their season. Despite not playing further into NCS, they ended the season with having accomplished their goal of winning MCALs. As the season comes to a close, captains and seniors Reilly Johnson, Kira Cross, and Tam News reporter Emlen Janetos found this season to be the best of their high school careers. This is Janetos’s and Cross’s fourth year on the team and Johnson’s third. All three captains have made significant impacts on their younger teammates and brought the team together.


1,288 20

March 2018 — The Tam News

The team’s development culminated in an MCAL title to cap off a successful 2018 campaign. Cross pointed to the team’s camaraderie as the factor in their success this season. “Over the season, because we are a really young team, I think our team chemistry made it a lot easier to be in a positive light because as we have gotten to know each other, we have gotten to be a better team and to be better on the field,” Cross said. Both Cross and Janetos agreed that their four years of varsity experience gave them a leg up in welcoming the underclassmen to the team. “We’ve always been majority upperclassmen, specifically the past three years, and we were always an older, more experienced team,” Janetos said. “This year we are majority freshman and sophomores, which definitely creates a different vibe at practice. However, it gets interesting because I get to lead a team that is different with my other two captains.” Kennedy appreciated the team chem-

Number of points scored by Jack Duboff in his three-year varsity career, most all time by a Tam player.

istry this year and thinks it was crucial to their success. “We had great leadership this season. The captains went out of their way to be inclusive of the underclassmen. We had great team chemistry and lots of fun,” he said. Janetos, a key mid-field player, received first team all-MCAL honors the season. Johnson, who was the youngest senior on the team, was able to connect with her younger teammates and help them transition onto the team. “The younger players can relate to me and easily approach me with questions because I am so young for my grade so I’m not as scary of a senior.” Johnson said. Leading by example, Johnson was also selected the MCAL Player of the Year this season. Cross, a main outside back on the field, was injured the majority of the season, offering her a new perspective on the team as a whole. ”It’s been really hard being injured, but it’s actually given me a chance to make the team chemistry better,” Cross said. “Because on sports teams there is always a disconnect between people who play and people who don’t get a lot of playing time. So for someone like me who has gotten lot of playing time over the past four


Score of the girls’ varsity lacrosse win over George Washington on March 6.

he ity win rge on on

Sports years, it’s really nice to be able to bridge the gap between people who play and people who ride the bench.” Cross has been able to help Kennedy with organizing the team, helping set up drills and motivating the team from the sidelines. “As team chemistry has gotten better, we’ve been able to see that when someone who usually plays goes on the field, it doesn’t really change the vibe of what’s going all because we are all really closely knit together,” Cross said. Johnson also understands how beneficial it is to have the same coach for all four years. “Having one stable coach all throughout high school has allowed my teammates and I to create a solid relationship. We have gotten used to [Coach Kennedy’s] coaching style and we know what formation he is going to play. Our team has been able to maintain trust and feel confident with him as a coach,” Johnson says.

Ultimately, the team’s success stemmed from the veteran captains who knew what needed to be done in order to win. “The captains came in with experience from their previous Junior Lauren Ross chases the ball during a home game against Lowell High seasons on School. varsity. They were nominated captains because of their experience,” Kennedy said. “We had a great season. One of the best in the history of Tam girls soccer.” ♦

On February 10th, the Hawks defeated Branson in the MCAL final, claiming the pennant. Branson had allowed only one goal all season, but fell ABOVE PHOTOS COURTESY OF EMLEN JANETOS to the Hawks 4-2.

Check the Tam News online ( for more sports coverage.


Score of the varsity baseball team’s win versus Maria Carillo on March 5.


Score of the girls varsity soccer MCAL title game versus Branson on February 10.

The Tam News — March 2018



R.K.-Overachieving by Jack Loder

Senior Rezin Harris flips over his opponent during a meet.



he Tam wrestling team just wrapped up their 2017-18 campaign, placing second in MCALs and qualifying three wrestlers for the second day of the vaunted NCS tournament. On top of these postseason accomplishments, the team also beat Redwood for the first time in 13 years. Although the end result is admirable, the journey was far from easy. Before they had even met for their first practice, the squad was already looking at an uphill battle. Just one season after graduating NCS individual champion and CIF state tournament participant Karim Shakur, projected 2018 captain Tristan Mitchell suffered a catastrophic knee injury on the football field, tearing his ACL, MCL and meniscus, and ending his high school football and wrestling careers in a single play. Yet even facing these obstacles, the Hawks surprised many by putting together a successful season. Led by a strong core of seniors, the Hawks dominated on the mat in MCAL team competitions throughout the regular season, and had a strong showing in the MCAL tournament, falling only to Drake en route to a second place finish. “Aside from Redwood and Drake, we breezed through most of our MCAL competition,” Senior Rezin Harris said. “I’m proud of my teammates and coaches for putting in the work to become a consistent force to be reckoned with.” Harris also expressed a love for Tam wrestling and the positive impact it has had on him during high school. “I’ve learned many valuable life lessons from wrestling,”


March 2018 — The Tam News

he said. “Tam wrestling has taught me ca- Looking ahead, Picus acknowledged that maraderie, as well as helped me forge a he will graduate a loaded class, but exmind of steel.” pressed optimism for the future as well. Head coach Preston Picus expressed “We are losing four really tough sea great deal of pride for his team, and re- niors in Rezin and Ronin Harris, Lucas flected on the growth of the program during Meyers, and Eli Ferrel,” Picus said. his tenure. “You can’t replace leaders like that “I’m super proud of this year’s team We overnight, but I’m excited for the future. came very close to winning league (MCAL) We have a strong 2020 class, highlighted and had a win against Redwood that was by leaders Ethan Parker and Tico Ferrer. huge for our program,” Picus said. “When I The future is bright for Tam wrestling. first started at Tam seven years ago, we had We’re going to be a powerhouse for a long, about eight kids on the team. This year we long time.” ♦ had 30, and half of our starters rank among the top in NCS. It’s been really special to see the growth.” In order to help fill the void left by Mitchell, senior Lucas Meyers joined the team for the first time. His bulky frame made the transition easier for the Hawks. “I joined the team to get tough,” Meyers said. “I learned to push past discomfort and pain to achieve personal triumph and victory for my Senior Lucas Meyers flexes on the competition. team.”

The Tam News Thanks Its Patrons Ellen Rosenthal The Belza Family Aaron & Samantha Wall Joe & Anne Shea Katie Vasicek Nicole Kennedy Paul M. & Pamela Moe Bruce Conybeare Ann Mitchell Nancy Conybeare Barb & Dick Rosenthal Ludmila Krivoruchko Clifford Mcguire Anne Marie Gallagher Andrew Parsons Penny Meyer Sheela Joshi Brett Wander Meya Kindred Sue Meltzer Barbara Rubens Tom Balisteri Jan Moody Tim Schultz Germaine Chee Julie Jeffrey Alex & Eris Cushner Barbara Ann Wingate Barry & Heather Soicher The Bell Family Catherine Hinsworth & James Long Christie & Will Emami Christina James Cynthia Samson & Alan Cowan Dauray Tannahill Owens Dylan Dammann Ephets Head Fernando Figueirinhas Heather Hawkins & John Duncan Hilde Kraemling Jan & Steve McDougal Jean Bolte Jean Morris-Cuvin Jennifer Murr Kathy & Mike Bishop Kathy Sonderby & Rich Ross Kelly & Dennis Leary

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