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DECEMBER 18, 2013

Do you hear what I hear?

Heidi Chiu

News Editor Audiences were given an opportunity to experience classical music at the Orchestra’s Winter Concert. Directed by Liz Blake, the String, Concert and Chamber Orchestras performed at the Carpenter Family Theatre on Dec. 10. The groups played assorted classical pieces, such as “Concerto No.4 L’Inverno” by Antonio Vivaldi, which is more commonly known as the Winter Concerto of the Four Seasons suite. Three soloists shared Winter Concerto responsibilities for each movement: Jamie Cao ‘17, Grant Cho ‘17 and Catherine Ruan ‘17. “Performing as a solo gave me a chance to improve as a musician and I learned to enjoy the stage,” said Cho. “All three of the soloists were freshmen,” said Blake. “The future of the program looks bright.” “The Winter Concerto is such an amazing piece,” added violinist Kayla Pollack ‘16. Conductor Blake agrees: “I thought all of our ensembles did really well and we had a full rich sound. The audience feedback was the best we’ve ever had.” Chamber Orchestra violins also presented the Monti Czardas, which was “designed to showcase violins,” said Blake. Orchestra gives students a chance to relax for one period in their busy schedule. “It’s the only class I look forward to,” said Chamber Orchestra’s principal viola Sarah Teowee ‘15. Also, orchestra allows students to bond and form a family. “Orchestra is like having 30 siblings for 52 minutes every day of the school year. Even though it’s chaotic, at the same time, it’s fun and exciting,” said cellist Alina Yen ‘16.


ORCHESTRA TAKES A BOW: (Clockwise from left) Soloist Grant Cho plays the 2nd movement of the Winter Concerto. Conductor Liz Blake presents the Chamber Orchestra. Chamber Cellists focus to stay on rhythm.

Dancers show off their moves Taylor Li

Staff Writer In its first annual winter showcase, the WHS Dance team will collaborate with Dance P.E. to perform the Winter Dance Concert on Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. Dance P.E. will perform to songs such as “Bamboo Banga” by M.I.A., “Ramalama Bangbang” by Roisin Murphy, and “Black and Gold” by Sam Sparro. Along with unique music, Desireh Abbassi ‘16 said “there will be jazz and hip hop influences” on their dance moves, which will also include some “zombielike” moves. For the performance, both periods

of Dance P.E. and the Dance team will alternate to perform solo acts. Dance P.E. has been preparing all semester, and Ally Stuart ‘16 said she is “excited but nervous” for the upcoming performance. Dance P.E. teacher Becky Alderson, is “really excited for this performance” because it is the first year they will be performing in the Carpenter Family Theatre. Dance P.E. is available to all sophomores and upper classmen and is a “fun alternative to regular P.E.,” said Abbassi. Tickets are $10 or $8 along with two canned goods in support of Manna.

Musicians jazz up the holidays Emily Demsetz Staff Writer

Jazz ensembles performed their Winter Concert at 7 p.m. in the Carpenter Family Theatre on Dec. 13. Directed by Mike Gangemi and Brian Peter, the jazz department, consists of four “Big Band” groups and a multitude of smaller student combos. “At first, it was really strange joining a jazz ensemble,” said vibraphonist and Lab Jazz player Marcela De los Rios ‘16. “But with a lot of heart, it definitely got easier to improve and grow as a musician.” The annual Winter Concert featured soloists like Alexis Rosenberg ‘15 on

tenor saxophone, Garrison Goodwin ‘15 on piano, and Matthew Montroy ‘15 on bass. Additionally, the students performed pieces such as “Walking In a Winter Wonderland.” “Some parts of being in jazz can be pretty difficult,” said trumpet player Robert Leicht ‘16. “There’s always a few tricky parts in each piece, and soloists can get nervous.” The band played a multitude of songs, including “F.M.,” “When You’re Smiling,” “Bulgaria,” and “The Nutcracker: Movement V, VI, and VII.” The last song was a holiday tune that even the performers heard for the first time since Peter had the band sight read the music.

in this issue Page 2 Toys For Tots

Page 5 Drum Major

Page 6-7 Christmas Buyer’s Guide

Page 11 Sports




DECEMBER 18, 2013

Take initiative: the Common Core

FBLA holds silent auction Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) held a silent auction Dec. 17 from 6 to 8 p.m. Career Education Coordinator Laurie Looker, who was recently chosen as California’s FBLA State Officers’ Adviser, supervised the event. All proceeds went to support FBLA.

WHS gathers toys for tots The week of Dec. 9, the WHS Student PTSA asked students to collect new toys for Toys for Tots, which gathers unused toys to give to children in orphanages and low-income families. The U.S. Marine Corps will distribute donations to the underprivileged in Ventura County. The class that collected the most gifts won a pizza party.

Alliance sings praise for choir director

Choir director Alan Rose was honored by the Alliance for the Arts, a nonprofit fundraising arm of the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, on Nov. 16. He has previously won Teacher of the Year and the Amgen Award for Teacher Excellence, and is a three-time beneficiary for the California Honorary Service Award.

Writing contest opens The Jack London Foundation is sponsoring an annual high school writing contest. Participants can draw inspiration for their pieces from Jack London’s own work. Awards are $2,000 for first place, $1,000 for second place and $500 for third place. The submission deadline is Jan. 31, 2014. Teachers can submit only ten entries each.

WHS alumna passes

Ashley Simonne Jensen-Pray passed away Dec. 8 at the age of 19 after fighting cancer for two years. She graduated from WHS in 2012 and was a member of the Women’s Chorale. She had recently become a board member for Shred Kids Cancer, a non-profit organization for pediatric cancer research. A memorial service was held Dec. 17. She was buried in Valley Oaks-Griffin Memorial Park, Westlake Village.

Victoria Wang News Editor

WHS has begun to implement the Common Core State Standards Initiative, which sets new standards for math and English learning. California accepted the Core in 2010 and fully implemented it this year, joining 44 other states in a national effort to create a new structure for American K-12 education. Under these new standards, students will be expected to learn more critical thinking and problem-solving skills than before in order to better prepare them for college and the modern workplace. “Choosing an A, B, C or D answer on the California Standards test is gone,” said Principal Ronald Lipari. “The new state test piloted at WHS this year requires the students to write and solve multi step math problems.”

According to Lipari, the new WISE program was implemented to help students through the WHS Core changes. The half-hour period before lunch will support students as they transition from an already rigorous curriculum into an even more demanding instructional program. Teachers met during several CPTs to revisit effective teaching strategies. They are also working to adjust the curriculum to help students succeed with the new Core standards. English teacher Deborah Kolodney said that students may have to “work more for answers to problems and be patient as they make their discoveries.” She said, “that translates to not giving students all the answers, but rather helping them discover them on their own. Independent thinking is the key to success on the new Smarter Balanced standardized tests.”

Are you smarter than a fifth grader? The National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) finished developing the Common Core State Standards in 2010. The U.S. Department of Education then awarded funding to the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium to design a matching test. So far, 45 states have adopted the standards. Will this new nationwide program herald in a new generation of smarter, more prepared students?

According to Kolodney, the standards will have a much greater emphasis on writing and literacy. “The standards demand an interdisciplinary approach to teaching literacy so all teachers will be involved in preparing students for the new test and helping them succeed with the new standards,” she said. Science teacher Kristi Hronek explained, “In science, we have Common Core Literacy general standards like writing and technical reading to implement [in addition to the] Next Generation Science Standards.” Hronek continued, “Some of the implementation changes the way science students will be tested, including more of an emphasis on lab write-ups, free response questions, and lab practicals.” But Lipari stated that WHS teachers already focus on thinking and problem solving in their instruction. History teacher Doug Freed is unfazed by the supposed higher difficulty level. “I have a great deal of confidence in the abilities of our teachers and our students,” Freed said. “The level of academic rigor in our department far exceeds the expectations of any test the state or federal government might throw at us, so bring it on. Our curriculum is sound, our teachers are dedicated, and our students are more than up to it.” So is the Core even necessary for WHS students? Kolodney responded: “Do all teachers need to be involved in teaching students to be independent critical thinkers [and] successful in life? Sure. But that’s just good teaching.”

States are given incentive to adopt the Common Core with Race to the Top grants, totalling $4 billion. CVUSD received $4.2 million this year from the California government to implement the Common Core. Smarter Balanced will run a field test of its assessment next spring and release the official version in 2015. Alaska, Minnesota, Nebraska, Texas, and Virginia are the only states that have not adopted the standards.

Schools start new balancing act Simone Moscovitch Feature Editor

A new program called Smarter Balanced will be implemented in California schools. “Smarter Balanced is the assessment the state is using to test, and it will mainly be focused on critical thinking. This year the juniors will pilot the Smarter Balanced test as well as the STAR,” said Assistant Principal Nicole Judd. “Instead of just filling in ‘A, B, C’ and etc., you now have to explain how you got from one point to another,” said Judd. Starting from this year, WHS students will begin moving from the STAR test to the Smarter Balanced standardized tests. The California field test will take place between March 18 and June 6, 2014 (“field test” means its only purpose is to assess the reliability of the test, so student scores will not be generated). All students in grades 3-8 will participate, but only a select sample of high school students are required to do so. Juniors are still encouraged to participate. Smarter Balanced tests will be administered using computers instead of traditional pencil and paper, and will take ap-

proximately three and a half hours. “We have four computer labs on campus, all PCs that are compatible with the new software we will use to take the test. We can rotate about 160 students in and out of the labs,” said Judd. This more advanced technology will allow tests to be individually tailored to each student’s skill level, as the computer program will adjust questions during the

test in response to student answers. These tests will also play a larger role in deciding the level of curriculum a student is allowed to take. “Are you showing us what you learned? This way we can correctly place our students into future classes,” said Judd. Several teacher have reported difficulty answering the questions for the sample Smarter Balanced test.

“The test is just different. Although the math section is challenging, it is essentially the style of the test that students and teachers are just not prepared for yet,” said Judd. “With the new Common Core, teachers will just have to learn a different way of teaching to accommodate the test.” Still, it is hard to judge the test just yet because no one has been trained to successfully take it.



TASKMASTERS Oh, RealLY? Orly Greenberg



To lead with an iron fist, or a gentle hand? Are stricter teachers more effective?

Opinion Editor

I’ve always been fascinated by film. I love that within two hours, entire worlds can be built and torn apart. Characters are fleshed out into fully formed people with backgrounds and loves and losses. However, recent criticism notes that movies released today are unoriginal; ideas are cheaply recycled into a thousand carbon copies. I’ve always wanted to write screenplays, so I’ve included some of my rough sample scenes below. And if I’m not mistaken, these novel ideas may just usher in the next golden age of film.

Fantasy: Orly Greenberg and the Wizard Duke of Questionably Pure Heritage INT. Dungeon. ORLY enters, robes swirling. She draws her wand and waves it furiously. ORLY: Rob, Hermstasia! We’ve got to stop the magical fleet of trolls before they-JK ROWLING (and lawyers): No, absolutely not. Try again. Romance: Butterfly Kisses EXT. Field. Neil and Orly are drenched in rain. NEIL: I don’t care what your Anglo-Saxon upper middle class family thinks! If you’re a bird, I’m a bird! ORLY: Isn’t that from a movie? NEIL: No! This is my original declaration of love! ORLY: Nah, that’s from “The Notebook.” Honestly, everyone forgets how talented Ryan Gosling is, because he’s so good looking. I should rent “Drive.” NEIL falls silent. NEIL: I don’t think this is going to work. Dram a: Magnolia Tears and Sunshine Smiles INT. Hospital room. ORLY (holding back tears), holds her mother JUDY’S shaking hand. JUDY: Orly, dear, I’ve got to tell you something. I’m not really your mom. I’m your grandma. ORLY: Wha—what? can that be? JUDY: Oh, did I say grandma? I meant mom. I’m your mom. ORLY: I—are you sure? JUDY: Oh, did I say mom? I’m sorry dear. I do believe...I do believe we’re not related at all, actually. ORLY: Hold up, can we go back a little? Let’s just rewind. JUDY: The light! I see it! ORLY: Can you hold off on that though? I wish you wouldn’t have waited to tell me this. I would’ve appreciated, like, a sit down discussion, save us a lot of confusion. JUDY: I’m...I’m... ORLY: My mom? My sister? A stranger? Spit it out woman. EXT. graveyard. ORLY looks forlornly at a gravestone marked “JUDY. BELOVED MOTHER? OR GRANDMA, MAYBE? WE NEVER QUITE FIGURED IT OUT.” ORLY places a single white rose on the grave. Maybe the “Forrest Gump” feather song plays as the rose petals disperse in the wind, if someone can get the rights to that. See, unadulterated originality. I better start writing my Oscar speech now. Or just print out someone’s old one. Either way.

Tara Spencer Sports Editor

When I approach the beginning of the school year, I always wonder what kind of teachers I will have. The chill, laid-back type? The casual but occasionally firm type? Or have the teacher gods cursed me yet again with outrageously strict teachers? However, is it so bad to get a strict teacher? I pose the question, do stricter teachers get better results? Results are mixed. Stricter teachers can create a hostile learning environment, sometimes even a toxic one. “I hate strict teachers. Their negativity makes it harder to learn and absorb information, because you always have to worry about not making them angry,” said Tommy Gonzales ‘14. Sarah Tilley ’14, agrees, stating that “as senior, I hate strict teachers because we are supposed to enjoy our last year of high school.” Often times, extremely strict teachers create a stifling environment, which makes it difficult to learn. The fear of failure that accompanies a harsher teacher’s classroom may lead to lower performance, because the students don’t feel the freedom to ask questions and seek success in the class. However, while more relaxed teachers tend to be more popular among students, evidence points to the conclusion that in the long run, stricter teachers are ultimately more effective. Studies show that it takes about 10,000 hours to master a skill. While high school teachers can’t fulfill the full 10,000 hours of practice, the concept remains the same: more work yields better results. Therefore, stricter teachers that assign more homework and drill in lessons are more likely to successfully teach students. Moreover, a recent Stanford study reveals that children “praised for being ‘smart’ became less confident... kids told they were ‘hard workers’ became more confident and better performers,” according to a recent Wall Street Journal article. Kind teachers might be prone to heaping on praise, which ultimately gives students an inflated sense of their abilities. Stricter teachers, on the other hand, can help their students maintain a level head and a goal oriented sense of motivation by keeping their egos down and their minds working. According to WHS Honors Physiology and Advanced Anatomy Honors teacher Nancy Bowman, “if you’re strict but fun, you get better results.” Bowman admits that she is different from strict teachers. Her humor and enthusiasm drives her students to work hard; however, she still guides with a firm hand.

Ultimately, more relaxed teachers may be more desired by students short term, but it is in fact stricter teachers with loftier expectations that truly achieve results. *All statistics taken from the Wall Street Journal article “In Praise of

Tough Teachers” Sept. 28-29 2013.



Action: Tonight, We Die: Part IV, It Ends Tomorrow Series Enter ORLY on a motorcycle. She approaches STEEL, a villain with a very menacing tattoo and an eye patch that seems to say “don’t mess with me. I’ve seen some troubling things in my days. Maybe that’s why I’m so mean and violent now.” ORLY: Steel. This ends. Tonight (ORLY looks straight at camera), YOU die. STEEL and ORLY engage in a very cool action scene. ORLY is really good at fighting, and pulls out some super sick moves. She’s clearly been training really hard, and her hair stays perfect, even though there’s some pretty intense back flips. STEEL even looks impressed.


Vivian Hu

News Editors Heidi Chiu, Victoria Wang

Opinion Editor Orly Greenberg

Feature Editors Ryan Cheng, Michelle Choi, Danielle Cortes, Kallyn Hobman, Hanyi Huang, Pranav Kaygee, Simone Moscovitch, Alex Shi

Sports Editors Christian Coates, Tara Spencer

Ad Managers Nicolette Blatt, Lauren Chin, Kelli DaRin

Staff Writers Emily Demsetz, Matthew Donovan, Rachel Finegold, Joseph Flatt, Bridget Flynn, Bo Jelinek, Aggie Juarez, Taylor Li, Jaisen Lim, Laura Marcus, Alisa Orlowsky, Ashwin Rangarajan, Mara Rothbard, Ari Sidman, Helen Shi, Steve Taylor, Max Wang, Allison Weisenfeld, Amanda Yao

Adviser Caron Battaglia

The Arrow is written, designed and run by the students of the Advanced Journalism and Journalism 1CP classes at Westlake High School and is published monthly. The opinions expressed in these publication are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent those of the Conejo Valley Unified School District, Westlake High School administration, faculty or student body. We welcome feedback. Letters must be signed by the writer. Please send submissions to 100 N. Lakeview Canyon Road Westlake Village, CA 91362 (805) 497-6711 ext. 4225

CONTACT US! Scan the link to find us on Facebook, or email us at:


New eateries open in Westlake Veggie Grill Looking for a healthy twist on American classics? Veggie Grill, located in the shopping center off of Westlake and Thousand Oaks Blvd, is the place to be, as they offer delicious food with so much flavor, it is impossible to believe it is vegan! Favorites are their sumptuous burgers and salads, while they also offer sumptuous desserts such as a grilled cookie and carrot cake. Additionally, none of the menu items are over $10. The location is in the Vivoli’s spot near Trader Joe’s.

Sprinkles Sprinkles is the destination for cupcake lovers as they offer a variety of flavors and sensations that anyone will love. The cute shop located in the Promenade next to Barnes and Noble has all the classics — chocolate, cookies and cream, banana, and lemon coconut. Students can expect to pay $3.50 for a cupcake, but what some may view as a rather high price for a cupcake is well worth the price for the gourmet experience the shop offers. Lines are long.

Freddy’s If you have a craving for some real American food, try Freddy’s Burgers, located at 391 Hampshire Road in Westlake Village, replacing Burger King. Freddy’s has an assortment of succulent burgers, hot dogs, shakes, and of course, fries. Favorites of this burger hut are the taste-budwatering steak burger and delicious frozen custard. Even with their amazing variety of food, none of their meals will cost over $10. They truly are a shining star in an otherwise dull area, and are worth a visit.

Starbucks A new drive-thru Starbucks opened up in the Oak Park Shopping Center for all the frappucino addicts. The company is featuring its holiday flavors, including peppermint, gingerbread, and pumpkin.

In-N-Out Burger Are you tired of driving to Newbury Park to enjoy an In-N-Out burger? You will no longer have to make that drive because in 2015 Westlake Village will have one of its own, opening in the new Target shopping center on Russell Ranch Road. The Westlake Village City Council voted 4-1 to approve the addition of a drive-thru restaurant at the west end of the shopping center according to the Ventura County Star. Sixth period teachers should be prepared for latecomers; the proximity of the new location will, no doubt be irresistible, and lines will be long. The new addition of the In-N-Out will surely be a hit among high school students and attract many customers, remaining busy throughout the day. Local residents expressed concern that the restaurant would generate unwanted traffic, especially with the proposed late hours of operation. In response the company has made improvements to their design to quicken the traffic flow. Compiled by Rachel Finegold, Joseph Flatt, and Ari Sidman

FEATURE THE ARROW Local eatery offers “mouthful” of Peruvian-inspired food

DECEMBER 18, 2013

Simone Moscovitch Feature Editor

Attention sandwich fanatics— Thousand Oaks Blvd. is now home to the new Peruvian-inspired restaurant, Mouthful Eatery. And no, it isn’t just a play on words. I bring my juicy and spicy chicken sandwich up to my mouth while I think to myself, “They weren’t kidding about the name of this place.” The sandwich comes on a ciabatta roll and includes pickled-radishes, and mixed greens; the aioli distinguishes this concoction. Luis Sanchez and Jeff Post, co-owners of Mouthful Eatery, and the rest of the staff are jotting down orders, gracefully running around to deliver meals; the ambiance is comfortable and busy with a local lunch crowd. The sweet aroma drifting throughout the restaurant is inviting. Reasonably-priced food and a clean and entertaining environment provide the right feel for young adults and older folks alike. “The decor is so cute; I’m really shocked at how fun and relaxed this place is. It’s definitely more family-friendly than Garage Dogs, especially since there is a variety of meals to choose from,” said Alice Neary ‘14. One of the owners offered us three white plates with small alfajores, an exquisite traditional Latin American treat. The circular powdered sugar dessert resembles a pastry-filled cookie and is sweet and delicious.


SANDWICH KINGS: Co-owners Luis Sanchez and Jeff Post with one of their famous sandwiches.

The menu also includes healthful alternatives such as salads and vegetarian sandwiches. “I felt really good about myself after I finished eating my meal. I knew I wasn’t getting anything bad for myself or for the world. Kale is always a good thing,” said Haley Appell ‘14.

Options range from kale salads to meaty sandwiches. So whether you are a strict vegetarian or a full-on carnivore, you can find a satisfying and delicious meal here. To try one of Mouthful Eatery’s delicious meals, check it out at 2626 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd.




DECEMBER 18, 2013

Maddox marche

s on


PHANTOM STRIKES: Ryan Kurohara embraces the cheering crowd.

Regiment earns 5th at Fresno


e’ve had some great shows in the past, but none that have been as captivating and crowdpleasing as this one. - Madeline Maddox

Michelle Choi Feature Editor

WHS Regiment participated in the 2013 Western Band Association Combined Grand Championships on Nov. 24 at Buchanan High School in Fresno. In the preliminary round, WHS earned fifth place in the 4A competition, advancing onto finals. Later, in the 4A/5A Combined Grand Championships, they placed 13th with a score of 78.15. The championships lasted for two days and 32 bands participated in the competition. “I really hope everyone is proud of the work we did because our show this year was an entirely different level of the WHS Regiment,” said Madeline Maddox ‘14. “We’ve had some great shows in the past, but none that have been as captivating and crowd-pleasing as this one.” The staff includes Scott Director, Brian Dinkel, Paul Curci, Azmi Baltagi, Geoff Christopherson, James Rumenapp, Deanna Hudgins, Sean Knuth and WHS alumnus Philip Idell for percussion. Soloists that performed included Steven Robinson ‘14, Jason Kurohara ‘17, Nash Iyer ‘15, AJ Asano ‘14, and Emily Demsetz ‘16. “I’m really grateful for all the friends I’ve made and grown closer to because of regiment,” said Kevin Ayala ‘14. “The Phantom of the Opera”themed show was inspired by the Santa Clara Vanguard 1989 Drum Corps show. Selections included “Angel of Music,” “Masquerade,” “All I Ask of You” “Think of Me” and “The Music of the Night.” “I really liked how cohesive and prepared we were for this year’s performance,” said Matthiew Choi ‘14. Assistant Drum Major Ryan Kurohara ‘15 will succeed Maddox next year.

Ryan Cheng

Feature Editor Looking to lead the WHS marching band to soaring heights, senior Madeline Maddox ’14 has taken charge as the new WHS drum major. As drum major, Maddox has big shoes to fill, but is ready to take on the challenge of making sure marching band has a successful year. Becoming a drum major had always been a dream for Maddox. “I remember being a freshman and looking up onto the drum major podium and thinking, ‘Wow, that’s so cool; these people are the big leaders, everyone respects them,’” said Maddox. “I always aspired to be up there for the overall responsibility of leadership. It is a meaningful experience, something you don’t get to experience in other clubs or activities.” Taking the role of drum major is no simple task. Drum majors run the entire marching band, take care of rehearsals, and conduct during performances; in addition, they must also serve as a standard of conduct for the entire band. For Maddox, it also means preparing the WHS marching band for its annual competitions. “I love the music [from “Phantom of the Opera”] for this show,” she said. “It’s not an abstract theme as it usually is. Everyone in the audience and the band can identify with the music.” She has also set goals for the regiment.


SQUAD, TEN, HUT: Drum Major Madeline Maddox values her years of experience in Regiment.

“For this season, I want people to put everything they can into the show and into making the music something special and not just another song.” Maddox’s favorite part of being drum major is getting to know all the band members and watching them grow. The least favorite part is being the babysitter for everybody; I always have to be on people to make sure they’re getting things done, always reminding people to do things, but that’s just part of the job.” Music is deeply ingrained in Maddox’s life. A former percussionist, she also plays the trumpet and piano, and participates in

wind ensemble. “What I really love about music is that playing is a break from the normal stress of high school life, a time to get away from homework and college apps and just relax,” said Maddox. The path to becoming a drum major is a long road; prospective students need to commit after school and weekend time to participating in marching band. “The application starts the day you walk into the band room for the first time,” Maddox said. “It’s not like you can just say I want to be a leader. You have to show leadership throughout all four years and show that you’re responsible.”




Picking the perfect holiday gift... For Her

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TURE 18, 2013

We wish you happy traditions and a happy new year!

ally want for Christmas. My hat they can pick out the perven asking. My first dirt bike ot for me. for the holiday? sting a party that the rest of LA. ing holiday traditions? amily likes to have an Asian all there, but we involve a lot n spins on some of the food. ive or to receive? I still love to give, but I don’t

sonal/ holiday food? ike the kind you get in your ginger bread houses one year,

use for the holidays? ave a lot of competitive neighand beyond with our decoraer that are made out of lights.

Q: What present do you hope to receive this holiday season? A: I don’t really know—I was originally going to ask for college wear stuff, but I found out that I got into University of Arizona!

Ali Blank ‘14

Matthew Ng ‘16

e to receive this holiday sea-

Q: What are your travel plans for the holiday? A: Every year we go to my aunt’s house—she’s widowed— and we spend Christmas with her for the day.

Q: Do you have any interesting holiday traditions? A: I make Christmas sweaters that light up. My mom and I go in the guest room and make it kind of like Santa’s workshop and make a bunch of sweaters together. Each takes an hour or so—on the inside, there’s lights, cords, and a battery pack. Q: Which do you prefer: to give or to receive? A: I prefer to give—receiving gifts is just really awkward! Q: What is your favorite seasonal/ holiday food? A: Definitely peppermint ice cream. Q: Do you celebrate Christmas religiously? A: Well, I’m Jewish, but I wish I did. I love Christmas.

Q: Do you decorate your house for the holidays? A: Not so much anymore, but when we were younger, we would have holiday parties. We’d usually put out a menorah along with some other decorations, but there’s not a lot of Jewish holiday decorations around.

Doc Martens are always a classic look, and add a sleek touch to any outfit. The boots can be worn year round, with pants, dresses, or tights. Play it safe with classic black or try a splash of red or yellow. They cost around $120 and can be found at Zappos, Nordstrom, or Journeys.

Alessandro Milio ‘17

at present do you hope to receive this holiday season? raphics card for my computer so I can play Battlefield 4 on a higher ng. at are your travel plans? going to visit my uncle’s house in Sacramento. He owns a crane comy, and I’m excited to be driving a crane by myself when I go down for holidays. ch do you prefer: to give or to receive? e to give more than I receive, but I like to receive at the same time. at is your favorite seasonal/ holiday food? ey Baked Ham and giant candy canes. I don’t have them every year, ugh, because they have a lot of sugar in them. you decorate your house for the holidays? ways decorate the outside of my dad’s house with a lot of lights and yester. We are the only kids in my entire neighborhood, so we don’t e very much competition from neighbors.

Wa n t to be the perboyfriend/girlfect friend? A mix CD containing songs of significance, vows of eternal love, or feelings that you could never say in person is a meaningful and heartfelt gift that your significant other will surely appreciate.

Kallyn Hobbman

Feature Editor

New Year’s Eve is the one holiday people all over the world can celebrate together. Although there are countless ways to celebrate, with many different traditions, everyone feels the anticipation on Dec. 31 as the clock nears midnight. One of the most common activities on New Year’s Eve is to make as much noise as possible. In Thailand and China, guns and firecrackers are set off to frighten away demons and route the forces of evil. Church bells can be heard all over Italy and the Swiss enjoy the beat of drums. In the American colonies, the colonists were said to have fired their pistols in the air. Nowadays, sirens and party horns are more commonly used. No holiday is complete without an abundance of food. The Dutch typically enjoy eating olie bollens- circular fritters. They believe in eating ringshaped foods as a symbol for the year’s “coming full circle” and for good luck. In Spain, they have a unique tradition of eating 12 grapes at midnight. As for the Swiss, dollops of whipped cream (symbols for the richness of the coming year) are thrown on the floor (and remain there). In England, Holland, and Scotland, different hot, spiced wines and drinks are served and used for toasts. The tradition of exchanging gifts dates back to as early as the Egyptians. They usually exchanged earthenware flasks. Nowadays in Scotland, coal, shortbread and silverware are exchanged for good luck. In Rome, some popular gifts include gilded nuts and coins—a mark for the New Year. All around the world, people enjoy giving each other gifts to celebrate this holiday. One of the most popular traditions is to make a New Year’s resolution. Said to have begun with Babylonians as early as 2600 B.C., making these resolutions is a way to reflect on the past and plan ahead for the future. Another common tradition is to kiss the one you hope to keep kissing in the coming year. Some more superstition-based traditions include “If the New Year’s Eve night wind blow south, It betokenether warmth and growth.” In Scotland, the custom of “first-footing” is an important part of their celebration. All around the world, New Year’s Eve is an exciting night filled with enjoyment and excitement.

B e a t s headphones offer good quality sound with a comfortable design. They have a wide range of colors and designs so they make a great gift for the music lover in your family. Beats also offers many different accessories for their headphones and portable speakers.


Finding a cause worthy of a donation

Amanda Yao Staff Writer

Around the holidays many feel a sudden desire to express generosity and give to those less fortunate. Finding a cause to believe in and support can give one an extra spiritual lift. Bill Gates has a wealth of about $65 billion. The absurd amount poses the question: “What does he do with the money?” Gates decided to consistently makes donations to numerous charities. “Money has no utility to me beyond a certain point. Its utility is entirely in building an organization and getting the resources out to the poorest in the world,” Gates told the Telegraph. We may not be as rich as the founder of Microsoft, but we can still make a difference. In general, a good charity is run by a responsible board with clear ideas and goals, is always looking for ways to improve, clearly identifies its purposes, and is adequately supported financially. The American Institute of Philanthropy created a list called Charity Watch which lists the top-rated charities in the United States. The groups included spend 75% or more on their programs, use $25 or less to raise $100 in public support and do not save excessive amounts. In contrast, a bad charity is characterized by misleading donors. Community service is not confined to donating to a charity. You may not have realized that some of the things that you do are examples of community service too. We’ve all heard the motto, “Practice random acts of kindness.” Realizing how fortunate we are heightens our appreciation for what we already possess. Becoming passionate about a cause inspires people to start their own organizations to support them. Alex’s Lemonade Stand is an example of this. At age one, Alexandra Scott was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancer of the nerves. When she was four, she decided to make a lemonade stand to raise money for cancer research. At her first sale, she raised a total of $2,000. From then on, Scott and her family continued to hold annual lemonade stands, and every penny went to childhood cancer research. People across the country were inspired by Scott, and made their own stands to donate to Scott and her cause. In August 2004, Scott passed away at the age of eight, but she had raised over $1 million for childhood cancer research. Casey Monahan, ‘16, was a close friend of Scott and helps her family continue Scott’s dream. Monahan can be found at Alex’s Lemonade Stand at school dances. Be inspired to do some volunteering this holiday season. You never know how far a simple act of kindness can go, and how many people it can touch.

FEATURE THE ARROW ? e ic N r o ty h g u a N : s u la C Santa DECEMBER 18, 2013

Taylor Li

Staff Writer


Max Wang


Staff Writer

Though a long time Christmas tradition, blatant lying to a young child’s face about a glorified house intruder must stop. Some of you may think I am a Christmas hater, but the true haters are the parents who pull elaborate plans of deception for years to fool their children. The Lie First, the most basic reason is that lying is bad. Santa is one of the worst lies ever conceived as it serves no other purpose than to trick and create false hope in the fragile hearts of young children. It doesn’t end there; an inquisitive child can cause more lies to spew from his or her parent by asking “We don’t have a chimney; how can Santa get in” or “How does Santa reach everyone’s house in one night?” The inability to realistically answer these questions causes more deceit and thus a circle of deception forms. Broken Trust Secondly, in addition to the lies, the bond of trust between parents and their children is broken on both sides. After about nine years, parents decide to turn everything their children have believed about Santa upside down and reveal that they have been deceiving them all along. That broken trust in an instant is irreparable and may be the leading cause for teenage “hostility” towards parents. Who can blame teenagers for ignoring their parents if “Turn down that music, it will damage your ears” has the same credibility as the quote “Santa came down the chimney last night.” The Dilemma Thirdly, what is the outcome of continuing to lie about a mythical overweight Eskimo? There are two outcomes: parents watch their children cry in despair as they confess the deception; the other is they allow children to figure it out by themselves. Overhearing that Santa is not real is one of the worst things that can happen to a nine-year-old. For the next few days he or she is unable to talk about what was heard, refusing to believe it is true until finally asking the parents for the truth. However, this is just the beginning as the negative long term effects of discovering the myth of Santa cannot even be explained.

When I was a child, I did not believe in Santa, mainly because I realized our apartment did not have a chimney. I thought Santa was a myth invented by adults to fool children like me into good behavior. At least this was the case in my family. However, now that I am older, I have finally reached a conclusion. I have discovered why teaching kids about Santa is not all about lies and deception, but about values such as generosity and equality that are hard to come by in today’s materialistic world. Selfless Giving Still, just because something may not exist, does not mean it isn’t worthwhile to teach children. Santa embodies the spirit of selfless giving; despite making no profit, and probably rapidly spiraling into debt from material and labor costs, he attempts to distribute presents to every child in the world. This includes American children who have Christmas lists that are longer than the line at Starbucks. Santa has little to give, but he gives what he has. Instead of demanding services and money from the people he gives gifts to, he asks for nothing except for the occasional unhealthy snack left under the Christmas tree. In a world where possessions are power and the goal of life is to get rich, is it really that bad to teach children to respect someone who gives presents and receives nothing in return? Equality Santa does not discriminate by race; he judges children only on their behavior. Even if you are an absolute monster, he still takes the trouble to drop by your house to leave some coal, which you could always use for a cookout. In our nation, we are judged every day by our race. On the recent California Healthy Kids Survey, one question asks for ethnicity. Why? Are certain ethnic groups more special than others? As I apply to college, I have become aware that some ethnic groups are discriminated against in admissions, while others get special benefits. Santa serves as an example of someone who judges by merit, not by ethnicity. Though the world at times seems unjust, Santa stays fair. Even if Santa does not exist—after all what obese, elderly man lives on an iceberg in the North Pole—still, believing in him teaches us some values that people today have long forgotten.

Top Holiday Classics Reminisce and relive winter breaks of your childhood. Remind yourself of the smell of a Christmas tree or the sight of an illuminated menorah or maybe muse over spending time with family in the cozy warmth of your home. Whatever nostalgic feelings you evoke, nothing brings sweeter winter memories as much as classic holiday movies. So grab your popcorn, eggnog, and hot chocolate, because you are about to experience the sweet nostalgic memories again with these three holiday classics:

1. “Home Alone” (1990): “Home Alone” is 2. “The one of those holiday movies that has a feel-good comedic storyline. The movie begins with Kevin McCallister, an eightyear-old boy who is accidentally left home alone, after his parents leave for a Paris Christmas vacation. He originally relishes his freedom; however, that initial happiness quickly fades as he discovers two bandits, Harry and Marv, plan to rob his house. The clever eightyear old manages to outwit the robbers. The movie is a comic Christmas classic.

Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993): The stop motion animation movie starts with Jack Skellington, the king of Halloweentown. Though he is highly reputed for hosting a pompous and grandeur Halloween, he gradually becomes bored of his job. Looking for inspiration, Skellington stumbles across Christmas, and finding it to be a more interesting holiday, he returns home with plans. However, confusion occurs as Santa Claus is captured by his nemesis, Oogie Boogie, and Jack needs to find a way to save his girlfriend, Sally.

3. “A Christmas

Carol” (2009): Based on the classic novel by Charles Dickens, “A Christmas Carol” tells the story of Ebeneezer Scrooge, an old grumpy Victorian miser is visited by four ghostly spirits on Christmas Eve. He is taken through his past, present, and his dark and sorrowful future. In the end, Scrooge learns to make more out of his life and becomes a cheerful and happy old man. Compiled By Pranav Kaygee




Year in Review

With the end of 2013 quickly approaching, The Arrow looks back on the hottest fashion trends, the most influential political news, and the most innovative music of the year.

Fashion flashback

Simone Moscovitch Feature Editor

As 2013 comes to an end, we must wrap up this past year’s most prominent fashion trends. We have seen a range of looks, from preppy fur jackets to grunge plaid flannels. Whether you like being dressed to the T or prefer looking like you rolled out of bed, 2013’s style is one to never forget. Jan. 1, 2013. It’s a fresh and new year, and you promise yourself to work out, get a job, and maybe raise your grades? But before you can do any of that, you must buy that velvet peplum blouse you see in the window display at Urban Outfitters. As you look at the outrageously overpriced top, a flicker of shimmery snakeskin catches your attention, and immediately your eyes lock across the store on Jeffrey Campbell’s newest shoe creation. “I remember when I got my first pair of Jeffrey Campbell’s. It was Christmas time last year…. Wow, I can’t believe it’s been so long,” said Morgan Arnett ’14. Another trending topic dating from the beginning

of 2013 is burgundy jeans. Guys and girls both took a liking to the fad, and now burgundy jeans are an essential part of many closets. Finding them was tough for a while due to their popularity; stores just couldn’t keep them on the shelves for very long. WHS supports burgundy pants by sporting their attire on Thursdays, now known as Burgundy Thursday. “Burgundy Thursday came about when I first got these new Burgundy pants but I wasn’t sure how they would go over since they look exactly like Advanced Anatomy scrubs. So I just made it a day, and it’s caught on,” said Chase Rosenberg ’14. Harem pants made a comeback during the summer of 2013. Pair it with strappy sandals, a crop top, and some chunky rings on your manicured fingers, and you’ve got yourself a cute boho-chic outfit. “I love second-hand stores, and I love recreating looks from the past even more. Madonna is a huge fashion inspiration to me, especially her look from the 80’s,” said Isabella Preisz ’14. Fashion-savvy shoppers are excited for what is in store for 2014. Will the main trend continue to be the I-actuallyhaven’t-showered-in-like-four-days grunge look? Or will the classic Burberry check pattern thrust itself upon us?

LOOKING BACK AT THE STYLE OF 2013: Grunge flannels, harem pants, and velvet peplum tops are popular fashion trends of 2013.

Hot topics Innovators make new music in 2013 news Aggie Juarez

Max Wang Staff Writer

The public has seen many influential political events occur this year. Here are four topics that have held the attention of Americans: 1. The Washington Post and The Guardian revealed on June 6 that the National Security Agency had been conducting a mass surveillance program on U.S. citizens with the help of companies such as Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Yahoo!. The program, PRISM, had been going on since 2007. Three days later, former CIA employee Edward Snowden revealed himself as the leaker who released at least 200,000 classified documents to the press. The U.S. government has claimed that the program can never be used on an American without a warrant. 2. On June 26, the Supreme Court finished its three-month deliberation on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which allowed states to deny samesex marriages granted by other states. The court overturned DOMA, stating that it “imposes a disability” to samesex couples and violates the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution. Though the ruling does not guarantee the right to same-sex marriage, it will allow samesex couples to receive the same benefits that their heterosexual counterparts do. 3. George Zimmerman, the man who fatally shot Florida teen Travyon Martin in 2012, was pronounced innocent of second-degree murder on July 13. 4. In October, the U.S. government was shut down when Congress failed to pass an act to procure government funds for the year of 2014. The 16-day shutdown cost U.S. taxpayers an estimated two billion dollars, according to the White House budget office. The government shutdown ended when President Barack Obama signed a bill to lift the debt limit through February.

Staff Writer

The year 2013 has seen many artists release albums with the internet playing a key role in their distribution to the masses. The following albums reached new levels of innovation with the intention to make new music.


ARTPOP, the long anticipated album of pop superstar Lady Gaga, is a multimedia odyssey through a variety of inspirations and genres. It combines art and pop but also delves into personal struggles the artist has faced. The album includes complex beats while also adding Gaga’s trademark vocals from “Do What U Want” featuring R. Kelly to the squeals in “Swine.” Gaga coproduced most of the songs and actually produced the song “Venus” by herself.


Matangi is M.I.A.’s fourth studio album and one of her more notable albums since

her sophomore album Kala, which debuted her breakthrough hit, “Paper Planes” in 2007. With Matangi, the rapper proves to be versatile with a sound unique to M.I.A, with her variety of beats that gives fans and critics no clue what to expect. There’s also a harsher vibe that is mellowed out with the spirituality she mixes in the album. Matangi reminds people why M.I.A. is one of the most innovative rappers in the industry.


Night Time, My Time from Sky Ferreira is one of the most anticipated debut albums of this year. The combination of a laid back sound and alternative pop voice create a nostalgic 90’s vibe. Night Time, My Time shows Ferreira’s maturity and confidence as both an artist and as a song writer, contradicting the usual bubblegum pop star.


Reflektor was heavily influenced by the Arcade Fire’s members’ trip to Haiti,

incorporating the country’s rara music into its new material, but still using its familiar sound. The album has a theme of isolation and death, with Auguste Rodin’s sculpture of Orpheus and Eurydice on the front cover, yet the tone is more uplifting than the actual lyricism of the album. Arcade Fire continues to impress both critics and fans with its progressive sound and influences.



Static, the indie pop band Cults’ new album, was released after the band’s extensive touring. The album showcases the band’s desire to perfect its craft, rather than try to reach an expected major label hype. This album has an ominous tone to it, an expectant feeling of a static television screen. Rather than an album focused on recreating its image, Cults finds peace with its current sound and avoids the major label stigma behind the album, a refreshing move in the music industry. With 2013 coming to a close, artists have announced their albums coming in 2014. One particular album that critics are waiting for is the long anticipated debut album of female MC, Azealia Banks, titled Broke With Expensive Taste. Ever since her release of the critically acclaimed 1991 EP, she’s caught the attention of many with both her provocative rhymes and blunt personality. It’s no doubt that her album will impress, since both her EP and Fantasea were praised by critics and fans for the originality she contributes to the genre.




DECEMBER 18, 2013

Get in the loop about habits Miscellaneous Habits

Alisa Orlowsky Mara Rothbard Helen Shi


“Studying” with friends

Staff Writers

It’s Sunday night and you haven’t started the project in biology due tomorrow morning. Now you have less than two hours to finish it. If you have found yourself in this place before, a habit of procrastination has developed. A survey of WHS students shows that you are not alone. Habits, the subtle yet sometimes very irritating actions that end up undermining our best efforts, are much more complex than what first meets the eye. In fact so much that they not only greatly affect our daily lives, but also reveal parts of our personality that even we may not have noticed. We are not born with bad habits; we cultivate them. For a habit to be formed it must go through a psychological pattern called a “habit loop,” which is a threepart process, according to Charles Duhigg, author of “Power of the Habit” and an investigative reporter for The New York Times. “What we know from experiments now is that it’s really the cues and the rewards that shape how these patterns emerge and how to change them,” said Duhigg when speaking with NPR (National Public Radio). The process begins when a trigger tells

Bad Study Habits




Staying up extra late


Picking your lip


Biting your nails



Going on the Phone


8% Listening to music

ourselves not to do the action, willpower is another main part in breaking a bad habit. According to a survey, the majority of the WHS student body is in great need of the willpower and all the tips from Duhigg, as procrastination is spreading. “[I] stayed up ‘till 3 a.m. on YouTube and then had to work on an essay,” said Emma Van Zuyle ’17. As these habits take effect, schoolwork, not to mention the daily sleep one needs, is deteriorating. It’s time to break this habit loop.

A poll of 118 students revealed that the biggest bad habit while studying is procrastination. A poll of 119 students showed that staying up late is the common miscellaneous habit at WHS.

the brain to automatically do the act of the routine. Once the brain has been cued, the actual behavior occurs; maybe it’s reaching for the second cookie or watching the next suggested video on YouTube. Habits can be identified in this step. The reason that a habit becomes a custom done repeatedly is that there is a reward. Something occurs in the act of the habit that the brain likes and wants to do again, similar to eating one chip, then grabbing another and eventually the whole bag is gone. In this case, the mouth likes the taste. In the case of the habit, the brain likes the reward of doing the action. Eventually, an action can becomes automatic, and the brain is able to “sleep” because it can perform the act without

thinking. When the habit has been done countless times, it programs the brain to do it automatically while carrying out other tasks. The way habits form is the key to breaking them as well. Since habits are created through the continuous repetition of doing the action, the way to break a habit is to do the exact opposite of forming onetaking away the repetition of the action. The first step is to acknowledge how your habit formed. “Habits are malleable throughout your entire life; [once you] recognize what those factors are in a behavior, it becomes much, much easier to change,” said Duhigg. Whether we substitute for a less harmful habit or continually remind

inflammation of the lungs and airways. This causes the immune response of the body to be slowed down, and reduce the amount of oxygen red blood cells could carry. Several short-term and often temporary effects of air pollution, are pneumonia, bronchitis, nausea, headaches, and skin irritation. Long-term effects include heart disease, respiratory diseases, birth defects, and damage to nerves, brain, kidneys, and liver. According to the WHO, statistics show that an average of 1.3 million people die from urban air pollution a year. In addition, research reveals that 50% of pneumonia deaths among children under the age of five is caused by inhaling indoor air pollution, mostly in developing countries. Another study was conducted on a person’s change in DNA when exposed to heavily polluted air. “They did find that exposed workers’ DNA was damaged by a

slowed rate of ‘methylamine,’ a biological process in which genes are organized into different chemical groups,” stated the scientists on National Geographic. The blood samples had “significant changes in the methylamine of the four genes that may suppress tumors.” The most common pollutants in the air are: carbon monoxide, groundlevel ozone, nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter, sulfur dioxide, and lead. Carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, and sulfur dioxide are caused from fuel combustion of vehicles, and lead is a pollutant from metal refineries. High concentrations of carbon dioxide and volatile organic compounds indicate large industries with a lot of waste output. Volatile compounds are airborne and can cause a person to go into a sleep-like state when inhaling too much of the compound. Several of the most air-polluted places around the world are: Karachi, Pakistan;

ly topped the list. Lorde had a humble start in her school talent show at the mere age of 12. A video was taken of her performance, posted online, which landed in the hands of the record company who signed her. The 17 year old singer-songwriter from New Zealand had exceeded Miley Cyrus in September for the #1 spot on iTunes for her hit song on her “Pure Heroine” album, “Royals.” Not only is she a music icon, but a style icon as well. As she told Teen Vogue, “I’ve always loved clothes. I’m not super clued up on brands, because it’s expensive!” Believe it or not, Justin Bieber also made the list. The Canadian-born pop star, valued at a range of $58 million to $130 million, is the youngest male solo artist to ever hit #1 on Billboards Hot 100 with his album My World 2.0. After his breakup with pop sensation and actress Selena Gomez, he appeared on gossip pages all over the world. His reck-

less driving and late appearances to concerts may cause readers to question how he could get on this list; however, he has donated millions of dollars to charity and has gained the title of granting 200 wishes through the Make-A-Wish Foundation, breaking this charity’s record. Others who earned a spot on this list include Olympic swimmer Missy Franklin, President Obama’s daughter Malia Obama, reality television show icons Kendall and Kylie Jenner, and Nick D’Aloisio, a technology guru whose news app was sold to Yahoo! for $30 million. What is so special about all of these people that got them on the list? Well, the answer is simple: they made a difference in the world around them. Though some of the teens on the list are celebrities, most are seemingly random young adults and high school students who just decided to make something happen.

The way a person eats popcorn, can show tidbits of an individual’s personality. According to Dr. Ben Sessa author of The Psychedelic Renaissance, slow eaters tend to be stubborn and put themselves first, while those who eat fast are generally less selfish and put others first. Eating one kernel at a time can indicate a more introverted personality. A whole handful reveals an individual who is more care free of his or her problems. Perfectionists may eat their popcorn with a mix of both ways.

It’s official: air pollution causes cancer

Jaisen Lim

Staff Writer The World Health Organization, WHO, has declared that air pollution is a carcinogen, a chemical that causes cancer. Inhaling these dangerous chemicals could lead to lung cancer and even death. “We now know that outdoor air pollution is not only a major risk to health in general, but also a leading environmental cause of cancer deaths.” said Kurt Straif, member of the international cancer research agency. The Los Angeles Times reported that air pollution also increases the risk of developing bladder cancer, and has caused over 220,000 lung cancer deaths worldwide in 2010. Other effects of inhaling polluted air include developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a progressive disease that makes breathing harder, and causing

Time selects most influential teens

Allison Weisenfeld Staff Writer

What does it take to make Time Magazine’s Top 100 list? Take a lesson from these individuals who made the 16 Most Influential teens list. Local breakout star Hailee Steinfeld made this 2013 list. At age 13, she gained an Oscar nomination for her role as Mattie Ross in True Grit, even though she had no prior experience. “I still consider myself very much a beginner,” she told The Guardian. Steinfeld, though only 16 years old, was given the role of Juliet in the recent movie version of Romeo and Juliet, directed by Carlo Carlei. Shortly after, she was cast as Petra in Ender’s Game, the pro shooter who helps to train Ender, played by Asa Butterfield. Ella Yelich-O’Connor, otherwise known as the pop sensation Lorde, actual-

New Delhi, India; Beijing, China; Lima, Peru; and Cairo, Egypt. The Air Quality Index or AQI is used as a scale to measure the amount of pollutants in the air. Any AQI between 1-50 is scored as “good,” 51-100 is “moderate,” and 101-500 is considered “unhealthy.” The air quality of Ventura County is listed under the “good” category with an AQI of 15 according to AirNow as of Dec. 2. To combat the increasing air pollution, Congress passed the Clean Air Act in 1963, which established the United States Environmental Protection Agency, EPA. The EPA limits the amount of pollutants released into the air from industries such as chemical plants, utilities, and steel mills. In addition, all plans to reduce air pollution created by any state have to be approved by the EPA before being enacted. Since the establishment of the EPA, billions of dollars have been given to states and local agencies to support clean air progress and research.

16 Most Influential Teens Lorde, 17 Lydia Ko, 16 Nick D’Aloisio, 18 Missy Franklin, 18 Kendall and Kylie Jenner, 18 & 16 Dante de Blasio, 16 Malala Yousafzai, 16 Kiernan Shipka, 14 Ionut Budisteanu, 19 Malia Obama, 15 Maya Van Wagenen, 15 Justin Bieber, 19 Beth Reekles, 17 Chloe Grace Moretz, 16 Hailee Steinfeld, 16 Time Magazine


DECEMBER 18, 2013



Cross Country finishes runner up at Girls State Championship basketball looks forward

Tara Spencer Sports Editor

On their return trip to the CIF State Championships, WHS boys cross country came up just short of last year’s performance. The team fell to the up-andcoming Saugus High School. Mikey Giguere ‘14 was the first finished for WHS and third place overall in the race, earning him an individual medal. His finalized time of 15:20 is a 27 second improvement from last year and becomes the fastest WHS time on that course. Sean O’Bryan ‘14 finished next for WHS, placing 25th by running 15:49. That earned him the third fastest time on the Senior and overall list. Chris Costa ‘14 finished 32nd with a 15:52, the now fourth fastest time on the Senior and overall list followed by Graham Rigby ‘15 running a 16:10. Jon Cantle ‘15 ran a 16:31, Matt Soules ‘15 finished with a 16:41, and WHS newcomer Jimmy De Mello ‘15 rounded it out with a 16:52. The team graduates top senior runners Giguere, O’Bryan, and Costa. One of the head coaches, Chad Scott, had much to say about the conclusion of the season this year. “We are extremely proud of our guys. They consistently worked hard throughout the season. Last

Matt Donovan Staff Writer


THE FINAL RUN: Mikey Giguere crosses the finish line, earning third place for the CIF State championship.

year we were state champions, but this year I think we had to work harder in each meet. Our team time at the state meet was three seconds faster than last year and yet we were runner-up whereas we were

champions ago. This year also saw the fastest team time ever run by a WHS team.” The 5K course granted the runners a cool day. Twenty three teams represented Division 2 across the state.

Senior athletes sign letters of intent Matt Donovan Staff Writer

Only a select few can say they have earned a scholarship to a prestigious sports school. The first NCAA signing day was on Nov. 13 where student-athletes with scholarship offers signed letters of intent. With almost ten Warriors already signed, Luke Dykstra ‘14 and Sean Crocker ‘14 joined the club and made the decision to commit. Dykstra committed to Fresno State with a full scholarship for baseball. “Signing with Fresno State for baseball really made me appreciate all my hard work through out my years,” said Dykstra. Dykstra, yet to play his senior season has made a name for himself with the pro scouts. He has played in the All American Under Armour game in which only the best players in the country are selected to play. Dykstra is projected to go in the first four rounds of the Major League Baseball (MLB) Draft.

“I feel excited and anxious to hear if my name is going to be called in June,” he said. The baseball season kicks off in February and with Dykstra as captain, the team’s future looks solid. “I feel strong and confident coming into this season. I hope to bring a lot of energy and positive outlooks and I will try to take the team to CIF Finals,” he said. Crocker signed the letter of intent to play golf at USC. ”It feels amazing. All that hard work and long hours alone on the course have finally paid off. Also this is a huge step into becoming a great golfer,” said Crocker. Crocker has made an impressive mark in the sports world so far as only a high school student. The Zimbabwe native has made the Junior Olympic team for his home country of South Africa which goes to China in 2014. Crocker, however, will not be able to attend because he will be in the midst of his freshman year at USC.

The WHS golf season begins in February, and the star athlete has some high hopes for the season. “I’m excited for the season to start. I’m hoping to lead the team to state and get as far as we can go this year. Our team is loaded with young talent that could go far in my last year,” said Crocker. These next couple years for Crocker are important if he wants to end up in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil for the Olympic Games in 2016. He is ranked fifth in South Africa and the top four golf players get to participate in the Olympics. Now that he is committed to USC, the pressure is off of him to have a good senior season; however, Crocker wants to keep on teeing off on the competition. “My goal is to make it to state as a individual and to win the state CIF championship with my team. We have had such a solid team my last four years but have never made it to state so I think this year my last year would be great to finally do it,” stated Crocker.

WHS girls basketball tips off Marmonte League season on Dec. 18. WHS will be facing Newbury Park at home. The girls basketball team is currently 5-2 in their pre-season tournaments. The team rallies behind senior captain Ashley Jung ‘14 who leads the team in most of the categories, including scoring and charges. “In order for the team to have a successful season, the players will need to give everything they have on and off the court,” stated WHS girls basketball head coach Chuck Aplin. Though the team is young, with only two seniors on the team, the players have been working since summer to prepare for varsity level. However the girls expect to have a good season. “I expect us to shock everyone with how hard we have worked and how much we have improved as time has gone on,” stated point guard, Melody Hass ‘16. Success will depend not only on Jung, but also on the following: Abby Christie ‘16, the defensive star; Maddy Aplin ‘15, leading rebounder, Sophia Pergolizzi ‘16, Hanna Phillips ‘15 Also Val Sarkas ‘14, Maya Shankar ‘17, Elise Hinman ‘15 and Melody Hass ‘16. The team needs to develop their skills every day at practice and learn to have trust in their teammates to perform their best. After last year’s disappointment the team is driven to prove that last year was a fluke and make a difference. Coach Aplin commented, “We will play some very talented teams this season. I think our pre-season tournaments are very important for us because with such a young team they need to experience the feeling of winning. The team will need to be aggressive from the very start of the season. We would love to have the students come and support us as much as possible.”

Helmet sensors to detect head injuries Bo Jelinek Noah O’Cain Steve Taylor Staff Writers

Concussions are a growing problem in football because they can cause serious damage to mental and physical health. Studies show that the after effects from the original head trauma can last for decades. Even when the symptoms of a concussion seem to be gone, the head is still not completely normal. The trainers for the WHS football team have instituted a new way to detect a blow to the head. These new helmets are $374 and have sensors in them to tell if a player has received a hit to the head. “The information is extremely useful to help modify practices for certain players. If an alert went off during a game, I may sit down with the coaches and say, ‘No.

Twenty-seven took a couple of hits, so let’s give him a break,’” Dr. Scott Blatt reported to the Ventura County Star. “It’s more comfortable than the freshmen helmets, but it is just as comfortable as the junior varsity and varsity helmets. Around the cheek pads, there is an extra layer of fabric,” said WHS freshman football player Grant Barclay. The sensors are primarily put in to the Revolution and the Revolution Speed which are designed by Riddell sports company. After doing a study of hits to the head at the University of Pittsburgh, Riddell realized

that there were just as many hits to the jaw, as to the head, causing just as many concussions. Riddell bought the concept of the sensors from a scientist and changed their style of the helmets to protect the heads of the players. The sensor does not necessarily reveal a concussion, but identifies a force to potentially cause a concussion. If a player experiences this level of force, then it will alert the trainers to test that player for an actual concussion. “Many programs and professional teams were reluctant to use the technology when it

first became available because it was very expensive, and they believed it might give false readings, but it has grown in popularity over the last five years as concussions have become a bigger issue in sports,” according to Dan Jelinek, former President of Riddell Sports. Some football programs thought they could only afford to give it to the positions that took the hardest hits, such as the quarterback, running back, and wide receivers. This left other vulnerable players who take hard hits exposed because the medical trainers would not always know. For these players and their parents, they have complained because they were unable to give these players the same type of warning system. As a result, schools, like WHS allow any player to buy the technology and keep it for all four years, making it available to everyone.




DECEMBER 18, 2013

Ferrari’s season leads to CIF individuals

Boys basketball off to hot start

Matt Donovan


Staff Writer


FLYING HIGH: (Left) Isaiah Brooks pulls up from the free throw line. (Right) Jeremiah Gray releases from three point territory. (Center) Alex Egurbide attacks the basket.

Christian Coates Sports Editor

Boys basketball has picked up where they left off last year. They were 28-6 and finished their season with a heartbreaking loss to JW North High School in the California State Regional Semi-Finals. After graduating two of their leading scorers, Josh Brooks ‘13 and Grant Lozoya ‘13, and with the departure of Larry Bush, the Warriors (6-2) have reloaded and are playing very well. The boys opened up their season competing in the San Fernando Valley Invitational at Granada Hills Charter High School. They went 4-1, blowing out every team they faced by at least 17 with the exception of their only blemish, a 5754 loss to Canyon High School. The week of Dec. 9, WHS traveled to Ventura High School for the Ventura

County Classic. In their contest against St. Bonaventure High School, the Warriors got off to a fast start against the Seraphs, taking a 30-22 lead into halftime. St. Bonaventure started to creep back into the game in the third quarter, cutting the lead to three at one point. The full court press of the Warriors was too much for the Seraphs, who turned the ball over multiple times in the fourth quarter. WHS held them to a single point in the final period, and coasted to a 58-40 victory. Point guard Isaiah Brooks ‘15 and Jeremiah Gray ‘14 took over the scoring, with Brooks finishing strong in the paint and Gray hitting a late threepointer to seal the deal. “We were in better condition than them. Coach got us in good shape so we could pull away at the end. We played as a team and got the W,” said Alex Egurbide ‘14, who contributed a team high 12 rebounds. Center Marcos Soto ‘14, one of the Warriors’ strongest

rebounders, was out with a sore ankle that has caused him to miss a handful of games. They followed up that performance by prevailing against the hosting Ventura team. After a hard loss against Valencia High School, WHS will face Sylmar High School to finish up the tournament. In his first year on varsity, Gray is making his mark by leading the team in scoring. His 12.3 ppg combined with Brooks’ 12 ppg have formed a formidable backcourt that is also nearly averaging a combined five steals. Coach Rob Bloom’s stingy defense has helped provide their offense with favorable opportunities. The Marmonte League looks to be tough this year, with Calabasas, Thousand Oaks, and Newbury Park High Schools each having two losses or less. WHS will need to continue to play at a high level to have similar success as last year. They will enter Marmonte league play starting the week of Dec. 16.

Wrestlers pull their own weight

Rachel Finegold Feature Editor

The wrestling team has come out victorious in their first match in league play. Varsity’s first match was at Newbury Park on Dec. 11, in which they had a tight game but pulled out victorious. “[Newbury Park] lost a few that they should have won, but it was pretty intense,” said Captain Alex Lux ‘14. Their second game will be played against Thousand Oaks on Dec. 19 at home. Coach John Cuccia said the team’s biggest rivals will be Royal and Thousand Oaks High Schools. One of his star players is Lux, competing in the 220-pound category; he started on the varsity football team as a defensive lineman. “I believe Alex is going to have an incredible year as a senior,” said Coach Cuccia. Max Moore ‘17 will also be one of the varsity team’s star wrestlers who also played defensive line on varsity. “I think he is going to have a phenomenal year as a freshman and he is going to be wrestling on the varsity team as well,” said Cuccia. Returning wrestlers are captain Bryce Canepa ‘15, who is a three-year wrestler at 126 pounds, and Conner Fachar ‘15 competing in the weight class of 152-160

pounds. “My goal is to go to state this year, place top five in masters and be ranked at state,” said Canepa. Sophomore wrestlers are Luke Rachels ‘16, Chandler Greding ‘16, Ethan Thomas ‘16, and Patrick Burke ‘16. “In the sport of wrestling anything can change as far as a JV player wrestling for a varsity spot,” said Cuccia. “We have a lot of new kids but they are learning fast and they really want to learn so it’s a good team this year.” The wrestling team has had four preseason tournaments; the first was at Buena High School where 12 wrestlers placed in the top three of their classes; their second was at WHS where eight wrestlers placed in the top three, their next tournament was at Thousand Oaks where they had 15 wrestlers place in the top three, and their final tournament was at

Newbury Park where they had four players place seventh and one player place fifth. Coach Cuccia would like to invite any student interested to compete in the 120 pound weight class.

Girls tennis can claim to be Marmonte champions once again. WHS has been in a long drought since 2002. This year was different than past years with singles players Kristina Ferrari ‘14 and Gianna Insogna ‘14. Ferrari dominated as a singles player, although she prefers doubles. “I’ve always liked doubles better and I wasn’t used to having no one to talk to while I was playing,” said Ferrari. WHS had an amazing year with a solid overall record of 14-4 and a perfect 14-0 record in league play, taking the league title. ”It was awesome to win because it was my first year winning and we had a really good season even though we lost a bunch of players last year,” explained Ferrari. Ferrari had a strong year under all of the pressure when it comes to filling in the number 1 spot when Insogna was injured. ”It was easy to fit into that spot with other girls being really supportive so I never had the feeling of pressure,” said Ferrari. Although the team made it all the way to the CIF Playoffs, it failed to get past the first round, losing 7-11 against the tough Palos Verdes High School team. Ferrari was selected to compete for the CIF individuals tournament after winning second place in the Marmonte League Tournament. It took a lot of dedication and hard work for Ferrari to make the transition from doubles to singles, but it appears she had it under control making the tournament. She had a great season which ended in her defeat in the first round of the individuals.


The December Issue of The Westlake Arrow


The December Issue of The Westlake Arrow