Page 1

westsidestory All the

Right Stuff pages 18 & 19

The WSS takes a look at the struggle between rights and wrong.





VOLUME 42 ISSUE 6 APRIL 22, 2011

westsidestory All the

Right Stuff pages 18 & 19

The WSS takes a look at the struggle between rights and wrong.





VOLUME 42 ISSUE 6 APRIL 22, 2011

disaster in japan

[news 6-7]

students support relief effort after earthquake in japan.

bromance [feature 10]

think you’re close with your best friend? check out these inseperable west high bromances.

prom? [feature 10]

prom is right around the corner! students share creative ways to pop the question.

extra credit

[profiles 16-17]

teachers who have gone above and beyond to impact the lives of their students.

all the right things [in-depth 18-19]

students’ freedom of speech is often the subject of controvercy. find out how free speech rights affect the west high community.

freshman four

[sports 28]

meet the talented freshmen who make up four of the top six players on the varsity boys’ tennis team. wss staff members lilli oetting editor-in-chief anna hippee design editor, in-depth editor emily kreiter managing editor garrett anstreicher managing editor david huang copy editor eleanor marshall copy editor lauren parsons business editor alissa rothman news editor madhu srikantha opinion editor becky sweeney feature editor anna egeland feature editor olivia lofgren profiles editor caroline van voorhis profiles editor evan smith a&e editor caroline found sports editor daniel rothman sports editor elizabeth dagle backpage editor saranya subramanian beats editor bridget novak artist jojo silverman photo editor lindsay best photographer katherine yang photographer elizabeth lin ad designer, staff designer audrey evans staff designer laura stamnes staff designer leah murray staff designer ashton duncan staff writer ansel landini staff writer juliann skarda staff writer pombie silverman staff writer katie mucci staff writer adam canady webmaster sara jane whittaker advisor

equity statement It is the policy of the Iowa City Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, disability, or socioeconomic status in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices. If you believe you have (or your child has) been discriminated against or treated unjustly at school, please contact the Equity Director, Ross Wilburn, at 509 Dubuque Street, 319-688-1000.


the spring sports are underway! check out the expanded sports section on pages 21-29,, and the wsspaper twitter feed for updates on all of the in-season athletic teams.

editorial policy The West Side Story reflects the views of the staff and does not represent the school administration, faculty or student body. Guest articles may be accepted to represent an additional point of view or as a part of a collection or reader contributions. The staff will carefully scrutinize all reader submissions. All ads are subject to approval by the business staff. Those that are libelous, obscene or plainly offensive may be rejected. The West Side Story attempts to publish all letters, which must be signed, to the Editors, but may reject submissions due to space limitations, inaccuracy or poor quality. It is the responsibility of the opinion editor to verify authorship. Editors can make minor edits for the sake of clarity, length and grammatical correctness. Staff responses to letters are not allowed. A full copy of the Editorial Policy is available in Room 111.



Trainer moves into team room BY ANSEL LANDINI

The West High athletics room, a room the size of a storage closet, a room that used to have a bad green carpet and need a paint job, is finally being upgraded. Sheila Stiles will finally receive what she wanted: a new room. The athletics room, located in between the North main gym stairwell and the varsity boys’ locker room, has been in its current location since before Stiles came to West in 1999. The new room, which is located in the old team room, down a hallway in between the main and back gyms, will provide ease and convenience to athletes. Additionally, the athletes will be spared 85 degree weather with the hot sun beating down on them while they have injuries prepared.

The room isn’t just cooler, it’s...well, roomier. The old athletics room that fit 6-8 athletes snugly has bec o m e too constricted f o r Stiles to conduct her daily activSHEILA STILES ities.

“There are just too many athletes that utilize the athletic training room on a daily basis,” Stiles said. Stiles wants the new room to be viewed as more of a medical facility, and it took a lot of planning to get it just right. Stiles sought to set up a room that maximizes space while minimiz-

ing cost. She attended numerous meetings with an architect and various members of the district’s physical plant to make sure that the layout turned out perfectly. For example, the room will also have whirlpools, drains in the floor and moisture proof paint. With all the commotion, there’s a lot to look forward to. Soccer player Tanner Schilling ‘11, who spent a lot of time with Stiles after injuring his ankle, is looking forward to the change in environment. “The change means a lot for everyone because it gives everyone more room and a better facility to get treated in,” Schilling said. “Fresh air, rather than the odor that emanates from the boys’ locker room during football season, will be fantastic,” Stiles said.

Debate Masters

Students qualify for Tournament of Champions BY GARRETT ANSTREICHER

They prepare. Then they prepare a lot more. Then they debate, and they do a lot more of that, too. And finally, after many months of competition, their efforts come to fruition. David Huang ’11 and Jeffrey Ding ’12 have qualified for the 2011 Tournament of Champions (TOC), considered to be the most prestigious competition in high school debate. To qualify for the TOC, debaters must advance beyond preliminary rounds in at least two specified, highly competitive tournaments. Huang and Ding are the first policy debate team to qualify from West since 2005. Their teammates, however, were not shocked by their accomplishment. “I’m not surprised,” said Liam Hancock ’12, a fellow member of the debate team. “You can’t deny, [Jeffrey] is a genius.” “We-we-we so excited,” said Ding, regarding their accomplishment. “We actually quali-

fied extremely early, the first two tournaments that David and I competed in, which was a nice sense of relief.” Of course, there is an element of luck in what teams Ding and Huang are matched to compete against. However, the pair is doing the best they can to minimize luck as a factor. “Something special we are doing to prepare JEFFREY DING ’12 is having a number of practice debates before the tournament,” said Melanie Johnson, the coach of the policy debate team. “We have practice debates throughout the year in which West teams debate other West teams. To prepare for the TOC, I’ve asked a number of University of Iowa debaters if

they would be willing to debate David and Jeffrey.” “Hopefully, we’ll have a chance to break,” Ding added. “Obviously, the competition is extremely tough.” Regardless of the outcome of the tournament, the achievements of the two are undeniable. “In three y e a r s , [Huang and Ding] have won two state championDAVID HUANG ’11 ships, qualified for Nationals and the TOC and have been in late elimination rounds of some of the biggest and best debate tournaments in the country,” Johnson said. “It’s been a lot of fun to watch the two grow as a pair . . . I’m incredibly proud of them.”




The Associated Press announced news anchor is leaving to launch a talk show in 2012. A) BRIAN WILLIAMS B) KATIE COURIC C) DIANE SAWYER D) MEREDITH VIERRA continues to inspect planes after it found cracks in several of its jets. A) SOUTHWEST B) AMERICAN C) JETBLUE D) DELTA that escaped from the Bronx Zoo was discovered safe and sound. A) A SEA TURTLE B) AN EGYPTIAN COBRA C) A NAKED MOLE RAT D) AN ARCTIC PENGUIN Demonstrators in killed at least 11 people in retaliation after a Florida pastor burned the Quran. A) PAKISTAN B) IRAN C) AFGHANISTAN D) IRAQ The new budget, passed at the last minute to prevent a government shutdown, will cut from the federal budget. A) $ 38 BILLION B) $ 25 BILLION C) $ 11 BILLION D) $ 71 BILLION It is reported that will end his/her Fox show at the end of this year. A) SEAN HANNITY B) BILL O’REILLY C) GRETA VAN SUSTEREN D) GLENN BECK



COMPILED BY//ALISSA ROTHMAN Today is Earth Day! Check out these tips to be more environmentally friendly.




1.B, 2.A, 3.B, 4.C, 5.A, 6.D

Room Renovations

03 news


Follow the West Side Story on twitter @wsspaper The first 100 followers will be entered into a drawing for a $25 Panchero’s gift card!

What in the WORLD? RUMOR

05 news

Stockholm, Sweden

Annandale, VA At the annual meeting of the HillbrookTall Oaks Civic Association, 50 people sleepily voted for Ms. Beatha Lee as president of the homeowners’ association, thus electing a Wheaten terrier belonging to former association officer Mark Crawford. Crawford said that Beatha “delegates a lot.”

Valparaiso, Chile


Over the last ten years, newspaper vendor Miljenko Bukovic has gotten 82 tattoos of Julia Roberts’ face on his upper body - all, he said, inspired by scenes from the movie Erin Brockovich.

When a Swedish couple set out on their fourmonth-long honeymoon, they got more than they bargained for. They were stranded in Munich, Germany, during one of Europe’s worst snowstorms, experienced the devastation of a cyclone in Cairns, Australia, flooding in Brisbane, Australia, bush fires in Perth, Austrailia, a 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, and Japan’s largest earthquake since records began while in Tokyo.

Bangkok, Thailand

One Thai woman recently tried to get past airport security hiding a twomonth old tiger cub in her luggage along with a host of stuffed tiger toys. The cub, which was drugged, was caught when the bag went through the X-ray machine. It is unknown where the cub came from, but it seems likely the woman was trying to sell it on the black market in Iran.

Budget cutbacks imminent Staff prepares for teacher cuts BY LILLI OETTING

As the confusion surrounding the school district budget situation begins to clear, the outcome confirms West High staff members’ worst fears: staffing cuts. At a last-minute meeting last Friday, Principal Jerry Arganbright announced that the administration had been directed to cut four staff members from each high school. The news came as a worst-case scenario for many staff members who had been following the budget crisis. “Our department’s biggest fear is staffing and whether we will lose the current level of staffing or we won’t receive additional staffing, despite next year’s anticipated student population growth,” said English department co-chair Tom Lindsey. The growth anticipated at West High in upcoming years adds to the magnitude of the budget concerns. “We are in a difficult situation. Gaining students but also being asked to reduce our staff really amplifies the challenge [of the budget],” Arganbright said. Next year’s enrollment is over 1900 students, an increase of 50 to 60 from

the current enrollment level. Some departments anticipate growth even greater than that of the school as a whole. “Thus far, we have over 200 additional students signed up for English courses for next year,” Lindsey said, “If our staffing remains the same, we will have to make some decisions at the departmental and building level on how we can absorb these numbers while maintaining the same academic integrity, rigors and expectations for each course.” Increases in class sizes, limitations on course offerings, and overworked teachers are the most likely results of staffing cuts. “I fear that shortfalls in the budget, combined with increasing enrollments, will result in crowded classrooms and increased workloads for our teachers,” said math department head Joye Walker. “[The English department has] already been discussing some possibilities [to cope with budget cuts] which include increasing class sizes, dropping elective courses with lower enrollments, and closing some electives to freshmen and sophomores or stu-

dents doubling up on English elective credits,” Lindsey said. The particularly challenging budgetary situation this year has arisen from a variety of factors, one major contributor being Governor Terry Branstad’s proposal for zero budgetary growth over the next two years in order to decrease the state deficit. “The primary cause [of the budget situation] is that the state is providing no additional money for the budget. In the past we have been given an allowable growth because of inflation, typically a three percent inflationary figure for salaries and operational costs,” Arganbright said, “No new money means you have to reduce costs.” If the zero allowable growth proposal passes the Iowa Legislature, it will mark the first time in history that the state has provided for no growth in the budget. While the exact affects of the staffing cuts remain to be seen, one thing is for sure: “we’re going to be in a very challenging budgetary situation for the next few years,” Arganbright said.



“We are hoping that next year the ninth grade wing will start serving food during all three lunches. We are hoping to serve 250 to 300 students each day,” said Principal Jerry Arganbright. The commons will contain eight to ten circular tables, each with seating for eight. One plan is that students in the ninth grade wing will eat in the freshman commons. The food served in the commons will be exactly the same food as is served in the cafeteria. “We are going to have over 1900 students next year . . . and this is our effort to try to expedite the growth in the lunchroom,” Arganbright said.



This year there was a proposal in the Iowa Congress to change the school year requirements from a certain number of days to a certain number of hours. However, Arganbright assures that “nothing ended up happening with that.” “Some high schools have a shorter day than us, and the Congress wanted to set up a common standard... In fact we have a longer school day than most schools,” Arganbright said. According to Arganbright, the proposal may have even cut days from the Iowa City School District calendar. However, he also made it clear that the proposal may have had many other changes that could have affected other parts of the school calendar, such as the early outs. “We would have had to look at the actual proposal and look at the numbers,” Arganbright said.


COMPILED BY//ALISSA ROTHMAN Switch your light bulbs to compact fluorescent, they last about ten times longer and are four times more efficient than incandescent lights. 05

06 news



West High students contribute to global relief efforts

First came the 5 minute long 8.9 magnitude earthquake. Many felt that the world was ending in those 5 minutes. People were thrown feet into the air while rubble fell into piles around them. Then came the tsunami, a crushing wall of water that wiped out entire towns, and carried away huge numbers of people, many of whom have still not been found. And then came the nuclear disaster, a scare that many in Japan didn’t know about for days after it started, due to power outages that left a large percentage of the population uninformed about what was going on in the rest of their country. And now comes the recovery efforts. The efforts to find the thousands of missing. The efforts to find food and shelter for the thousands who were displaced. And the efforts to rebuild a broken Japan that was, until weeks ago, thriving. Japanese student Riko Ohashi ’12 said that the disaster was hard for her to believe. “It was hard for me to grasp what really happened. I knew the facts, but the actual weight of the event was so heavy that it took a while to sink in,” she said. Akimi Oya ’13 felt the same way, after hearing the news at school. “I was really surprised and shocked that it happened in Japan, which definitely gave me a different feeling than what I felt when the disaster in Haiti happened. I was really worried for my family in Japan and I just couldn’t wait to get home






so I could find out what happened,” she said. Japanese students at West High like Ohashi and Oya felt that they needed to do more to help out, and organized a fundraiser at West. They sold t-shirts, wristbands and baked goods to show their support, and raised over $1,000. “I was so pleasantly surprised at how supportive the people at West High were. Student Senate was very enthusiastic and helpful about the bake sale, and a lot of people showed support through donations and such too. The amount of money collected was surprising, but what was even more surprising was just the amount of support I got from people I normally didn’t even talk to. It really showed that I lived in a great community of people,” Ohashi said. Students were not only impressed with the generosity of West High, but with the generosity of Japanese citizens as well. “Japanese culture [shows] Japa-

nese people to be modest and giving. Even in times of major distress, this came through, and people there helped each other out in a very admirable way,” said Mikako Harata ’12. Ohashi agreed, adding, “You’d think that because stocks of necessities got limited after the

earthquake and tsunami, people would be rushing to stores and fighting to buy the most stock of food and such, but what’s been going on is that people are trying to buy the least as possible, to make sure other people get their share of necessities as well. I feel like caring for others is a very Japanese trait that got brought out even at times like this.” Although relief efforts have been extensive, it has been emphasized that the Japanese people cannot be forgotten about. “I think the media was doing a good job, but I feel like they stopped covering the disaster after a while, which is kind of spreading the belief that it’s not such a big deal because it’s ‘Japan.’ I think Americans and other people around the world need to be reminded that even though Japan is ‘rich,’ unlike Haiti, it still needs help,” Oya said.



Earthquake and tsunami A 9.0 magnitude earthquake strikes Japan, leaving the country shaken by destruction. Fifteen minutes later, a 23-foot tsunami hit, washing out entire towns, leaving thousands homeless and thousands more missing. This same day, it was reported that cooling systems in three nuclear reactors in Fukushima had failed.

Plan your errands so you can make them all in one trip, driving less and saving gas.

‘More than just a news story’

07 news


For me, seeing the destruction in Japan was like watching a bomb get dropped on Iowa City on TV. For me, it was personal. My mom’s side of the family lives near Sendai, the closest major city to the epicenter of the earthquake, and the city that everyone has been seeing images of on TV. We’ve all seen the same ones: the businessmen running for cover as rubble falls from above, TVs and bookshelves in offices toppling like dominoes, a chandelier swinging so intensely that you just know that the sixth time you see the footage it will actually detach from the ceiling and fall. For me, that was like seeing West High collapse in on itself on TV. I know those places. They’re places that I spend an entire month in every year. They’re places that I’ve visited countless times with my grandparents and parents. I know those places like the back of my hand. For me, the devastation in Japan is more than just a news story; it is a constant source of worry and uncertainty. I spent the first week on the phone and Internet, searching over and over for the names of my family members on the lists of evacuees, and dialing the same people over and over again - my grandma, my uncle and my mom’s friends - to see if anyone had heard anything. The first three days, our efforts were fruitless. Those days were filled with worry and doubt. Would we ever see

our family and friends again? Would we ever see our favorite places in Sendai again? Answers were hard to come by. Then, on the fourth day, my mom finally got through to her best friend, Yuko Odajima, in Sendai. When Yuko finally answered the phone, she and my mom cried together and my mom asked if she knew anything about her mother and brother. Yuko hadn’t heard anything, but she reassured my mother, and said that the tsunami most likely didn’t reach her town and that the earthquake probably didn’t do extensive damage to her house. Then she told the stories she had heard. One of their friends, Seiko Ohtsuki, works for a nursing home, and had been taking the residents on a field trip to the Sendai airport. They experienced the earthquake there, and Seiko drove them out immediately afterwards. Power outages left her without phone, television or Internet, leaving her literally in the dark about the disaster she had just escaped. In the U.S., we knew that she had escaped the tsunami, and possibly death, narrowly, because we had seen the photos of the Sendai airport on the news. After that helpful reassurance from Yuko, a few more days passed, and we weren’t calling as often. Finally, we were able to get in touch with my grandma’s next-door neighbors in Japan, who assured us that everything was fine, my grandma and uncle were safe and sound. When we finally got my grandma on the phone we let out a huge sigh of relief, but there was still

worry in the back of our minds. My grandma’s four brothers and sisters all live on the coastal town of Ishinomaki, where the tsunami hit hard. My uncle told us about his experiences with the earthquake. He had been taking a nap the afternoon the earthquake hit, and awoke to find himself thrown up in the air, almost to the ceiling.When I try to imagine what that must have been like, I can’t. The magnitude of the earthquake would’ve had me, and many other Iowans I’m sure, thinking that the world was coming to an end. The earthquakes that I’ve experienced while visiting Japan have all been relatively small and have lasted less than a minute. This one was around five minutes, and I’m sure nobody in Japan had any idea what to expect. During an earthquake there is nothing to do but to wait it out, and five minutes is a long time to wait when you think that these might be your last few minutes on earth. Finally after another couple of days, we got news of my grandma’s siblings in Ishinomaki. Three out of the four of them had escaped. One of them had watched the tsunami arrive from her evacuation location, high up on a hill. She had watched it sweep through her town, lifting up cars and houses like toys. The house that my grandma grew up in had actually been moved two houses down, and a neighbor’s house had taken its place. The fourth sibling’s body was found with his wife’s a few weeks after the tsunami. I don’t think anybody can come close to imagining

April 12

March 12 : There is an explosion at the nuclear power plant, where four workers are injured.The plant decides to flood the coolers to avoid another explosion. March 13 : The coastal town of Minamisanriku reports more than 9,000 citizens still missing out of their population of 17,000.



March 12-13

Explosion and Minamisanriku

what the tsunami was like without being there. Everything is scarier when you’re actually there, and to me, knowing that a wall of water is bearing down on you is terrifying. Magnify that fear times a thousand and maybe we can come close to feeling what they were feeling. This disaster has also instilled me with a huge amount of respect for the Japanese people. In the face of the food, gas and water shortages, they still maintained their sense of order and generosity, something that I have never seen happen in America. News crews have showed us actual lines at supermarkets, and not looters breaking windows and doors down to help only themselves. The Japanese have been taking only what they need, in order to make sure that everybody else can get some as well. My own family’s neighborhood in Japan has been extremely generous, sharing the food that they have with each other to make sure everyone is well taken care of. Imagine if the rest of the world could create the same kind of community. News coverage is dying down here, but things are not even close to dying down in Japan. My grandma once called us when it was 10 a.m. there, and said that my uncle had left at 5 a.m. to get gas and still hadn’t returned. The food shortages and unrepaired roofs are still there. Although the places that were destroyed can never be replaced, they can be repaired. Help is still needed.

Radiation and death toll The status of the nuclear accident is increased from a level 5 to a level 7. Chernobyl was ranked at a level 7. Fears of radiation in water and food rise. Until now, the levels have been at non-toxic levels. As of this date, the death toll from the earthquake and tsunami was 13,400, with thousands more still homeless.

Leave your car at home twice a week, it can cut your green house gas emissions by 1,600 pounds every year.


08 profiles Clements ’12 is still smiling as she gets ready for her first round of Chemotherapy. She underwent treatment for Osteosarcome, a bone cancer, for over a year and is now cancer-free. She is the owner of many berets, which she prefers wearing over wigs.


Clements Beats Cancer BY ANNA EGELAND

She had long, brown beach waves with highlights, and the day after her sweet sixteen, she cut them off. Keely Clements ’12 couldn’t stand the idea of watching her hair fall out from chemotherapy, so, accompanied by her mom, her boyfriend and some cheerleading teammates, she went to get her head shaved in advance. Clements was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer, in 2009. And although she’s been cancer-free since Jan. 8, her hair is just starting to grow back. Clements is the owner of six wigs (in a variety of lengths and colors), but for the most part she prefers to go without a wig. “[Wearing a wig] just doesn’t feel as natural,” Clements said. “Losing your hair is just another form of battle-scar, but it’s a proud battle scar,” Clements said. She has two more: one near her collarbone on the left side of her chest and another that runs from her left thigh down past her knee.The latter is the result of last year’s surgery to remove a lesion on her femur. The procedure removed part of her bone and replaced it with a titanium rod, and as a result she won’t be able to do athletics again, including cheerleading.

In fact, Clements had just made the varsity cheer squad at her old school in Ridgecrest, California, when her symptoms first appeared the summer before her sophomore year. She didn’t suspect anything serious when she first began having knee pain at cheer camp - after all, she had been warned by the other cheerleaders that she would be sore during the first week. But when the pain escalated and she started to limp after P.E., Clements and her mother decided it was time to visit the emergency room after school that day. Soon after her visit to the emergency room, she was called to the assistant principal’s office. The doctor was on the phone to break the news. “I was surprisingly calm … when he first said cancer. I just took a deep breath. … After he hung up I put my head in my hands and just started bawling,” Clements said. After she found out, her family stepped in to support her. Her grandparents came to visit her for several months, her boyfriend would miss school to be with her and she formed a new relationship with her father, whom she hadn’t seen for thirteen years. She lives with him now, along with his wife, their two children and five dogs. Although Clements has a new life in Iowa, there are parts of her old

life that will always be with her. Clements’ boyfriend, Shane Ammerman, 19, moved to Iowa after staying behind to graduate high school last spring. “If anything it made our bond stronger … I literally cried on his shoulder so many nights,” Clements said. Now he’s training for the Marine Corps, but he’ll be back to see Clements soon and she has a ring to prove it. Clements beams and briefly flashes the ring on her left hand as she announces her engagement, which happened in December 2010. In the future, Clements sees herself going to college for pre-med with a possible biology major. She also hopes to coach cheerleading and be an active participant in cancer research and support. With Clements’ optimistic outlook, she’s sure to succeed on any path she chooses to pursue. West High Chemistry teacher, Carolyn Walling, says Clements’ upbeat attitude was one of the first things she noticed. “She’d be sick but she was just so positive,” Walling said. “She was really good about doing everything herself.” “I always have a smile on my face, even if something is wrong … I definitely believe smiles are contagious,” Clements said.



Walk or bike to close destinations and carpool or use public transportation for not-so-near places.

David Tsai ’11 & Nate Ewing ’11

09 profiles

WSS: What first attracted you to your bro? NATE EWING: His eyes. DAVID TSAI: We met at the library last year, first tri. He stared at me and asked me where I [was] from and we started to talk and I think he’s a funny guy. WSS: Was it love at first sight? NE: He pretty much stole my heart from the start. DT: Probably, he has blonde hair and his hair looks fantastic WSS: What first atWSS: How has your bromance differed from other romanctracted you to your bro? es you’ve had? AARON PELLER: The first thing I noNE: It’s different from other bromances because I’ve had to help him with ticed was his blonde hair glistening in the his English and teach him about our culture. spring sunshine. DT: He is the one that [is] actually willing to listen to my poor English and teach me CONNOR SCHRECK: Back in junior high he had how to speak English. long hair. With that being said, I would have to say his WSS: How much time do you spend with your bro? brown locks. NE: We’ve always had open together and we usually see each other on the weekends. WSS: How much time do you spend with your DT: If we both have free time on the weekend, we will call each other and hang out and bro? we have [had] the same open periods since junior year. AP: Depends if im acting like a girl, other than that like 4-5 WSS: Do you have any pet peeves about your bro? hours a day. NE: He calls me ALL the time; there are too many to write down CS: If he isn’t acting like a girl, probably 5 hours a day. DT: He [doesn’t] really check his phone frequently, so after I call or text him, WSS: How has your bromance differed from other roI need to wait a little bit of time to wait for his call back. mances you’ve had? WSS: What’s your favorite quality about your bro? DT: Nate introduced all of his friends to me, so that I have many friends AP: This is actually my first romance, and I like the direction it’s going. CS: He is always there for me. too. If there is no Nate, there is no David Tsai. WSS: Do you have any pet peeves about your bro? AP: I get made fun of at times, but I try to keep that behind me. CS: When he walks into my house without telling me he is coming over. WSS: What’s your favorite quality about your bro? compiled by leah murray AP: His mighty strong arms can protect me from anything A form of male bonding usually invisible to the naked eye; a bond CS: The way he laughs. WSS: What do you do for bro “date” night? shared between two males that have a deeper understanding of AP: Rock and Skate and then back to my each other; a close relationship between two bros to such a point place for a movie. where they start to seem like a couple; a highly formed friendship CS: Rock and Skate!


between male friends, or “bros.” No matter how you define the term “bromance,” these West High bros definitely have a special bond.

Aaron Peller ’11 & Connor Schreck ’11

Matt Harding & Nathan Frese

WSS: What first attracted you to your bro? MATT HARDING: We probably worked at West for five years before we said a peep to each other. I think Coach Stiles and I figured out that he was a ‘soccer’ guy and started watching premier league games at his house because he had FSC. NATHAN FRESE: It might have been his sideburns, but more likely his snarky comments and biting social commentary. WSS: Was it love at first sight? MH: Nah, I’m pretty anti-social when I’m not in front of the classroom. It probably took me five years to say hi to him. NF: Actually, at first sound. Once I heard him on guitar there was no going back. WSS: What’s your favorite quality about your bro? MH: Ummm, he’s always 20 minutes later than he says he’ll be, so does that make him reliable? I can always depend on him to be honest with me when I need an opinion, even if he knows it’s not going to be exactly what I want to hear. NF: It’s like a competition to see who can come up with the wittiest comment or reference—and sometimes we have the exact same thought. Weird. WSS: How do significant others feel about your relationship? MH: I think they’re appreciative of the time away from us, we’re both sarcastic know-it-alls, so any reprieve from that is probably a welcome relief to them. NF: They are currently in therapy as a result. WSS: How much time do you spend with your bro? MH: He went ahead and moved into my neighborhood, so now that he’s only a two minute walk away, I see a lot less of him than when he lived on the other side of town. NF: Relative to the amount of time teenagers spend texting during class? Hardly any. WSS: What do you do for bro “date” night? MH: Our bro dates usually involve getting up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday and heading to one or the other’s basement for either an Arsenal or Liverpool match. NF: Go to the Indy 500, play bad covers of good music, watch soccer, pray that someone will one day do an article about bros. PHOTOS BY//JOJO SILVERMAN

eCycle. Instead of throwing away old electronics, take them to a recycling center to reduce mining for materials like gold and copper and reduce hazardous waste.


10 feature


PRoM? :)

. . OM

We were watching a movie in Mr. Munsterman’s physics class. After the movie was over, Mr. Munsterman pulled up the overhead, and I didn’t notice right away, but the board said “Hannah.. Prom :) Ryan Stewart” and I screamed and turned my head and Ryan was on one knee next to my desk holding his hands out. I was trying not to burst into tears at this point. And he held my hand and said “Hannah Hurlbert, will you go to prom with me?” And I said “Yes!!!” I was in total shock, he totally surprised me. It was adorable. It was really cute. -Hannah Hurlbert ’11



I had originally planned to ask Maggie [Monson ’12] to prom via fortune cookie, which I thought was a pretty entertaining idea, but then she told me that she didn’t like fortune cookies so I had to come up with a whole different idea. So then I thought about those notes people would give to each other in middle school with the check yes or check no boxes. So then I made a giant one of those, and talked to Maggie’s soccer friends so that I could hang it on a tree on the route that they planned to run with a marker attached to it. Josh Fortmann ’12

Still working up the courage to ask the date of your dreams? Hopefully these stories will give you some inspiration. With charm like these boys, who could say no?



I asked Miranda Sauve ’13 to prom. Basically I made a cake and made it her favorite color, purple, and put “Prom” with a bunch of question marks around it and put “- Brad” at the the bottom of the cake. I took it to her first period class and put it on her desk and then left and she said yes in between the next periods.

-Brad Guymon ’11

Connor Schreck ’11 asked me by putting a parking ticket on my car and wrote ‘Prom’ on it. I was actually really nervous when I got it because I’ve gotten so many parking tickets that if I got another one, my parents would ground me for a year. -Maddie Leyden ’13


Don’t prewash your dishes, tests show it doesn’t improve dish cleanliness and it saves 20 gallons of water per load.


11 feature

From wilderness survival to leadership training, these scouts take the cake ... or should I say cookies and popcorn?


Nobody is confusing the hallways of West High with the moral highroad. But among us there are citizens who are trustworthy. In fact, they are loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, clean and reverent, too. So says Boy Scout law. If you hear Boy Scouts and picture Kevin from Up, you’ve got it all wrong. “There’s a huge misconception that Boy Scouts are like 8 to 12 [years old]. You have to be at least 12 to fulfill all the Cub Scout requirements, or you have to be 11 and have a really long attention span,” said Javier Miranda-Bartlett ’12, a member of Boy Scouts. He added that for a group that is stereotyped to exclude homosexuals and atheists, the scouts he’s met have been remarkably accepting of people with all sorts of differences. “Boy Scouts doesn’t force you to be anything you don’t want to be. ...There are a lot of kids who don’t get a lot of acceptance outside of Boy Scouts and it’s good to be in a place where people understand you and accept you for the things you can do rather than judge you for the things you can’t,” MirandaBartlett said. Fellow scout Nick Gerken ’12 seconds an appreciation for the ease and friendliness of weekly meetings. Gerken’s troop meets on Sunday afternoons, and after planning upcoming events like the monthly camping trip, the Scouts dig into the meeting’s focus, which covers anything from first aid to winter camping skills, or “all the basics on how not to kill yourself ” as Gerken puts it. And Boy Scouts can be pioneers in more than just the great outdoors. Collin Kramer ’11 recently achieved Eagle Scout status, the highest rank in Boy Scouts. Becoming an Eagle Scout is no fly-by-night operation, requirements include earning 21 merit badges a 60 hour volunteer effort. Kramer devoted over 100 hours to videotaping interviews with 11 war veterans ranging from family members to new acquaintances, who have served in wars from

WWII to the Persian Gulf. For Kramer, the most moving story came from his bus driver on a previous mission trip. “We found out along the way that he was a Vietnam vet and a year later I remembered him. . . . He saw a lot more frontline action [than some other veterans I talked to and] was kind of saddened by the whole experience and wouldn’t wish it on anyone. A lot of the guys I talked to didn’t see brutal combat, like my uncle wasn’t directly in the jungles of Vietnam and didn’t see the worst grit. They were all very mournful and they didn’t regret what they did but didn’t wish it on anyone,” Kramer said. He hand delivered the recordings to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., where he said the veterans he interviewed are proud to have their stories preserved forever. Not all Boy Scout trips to Washington, D.C. are so somber. Last summer, Gerken and Miranda-Bartlett attended a two-week conference called the Jamboree, accompanied by thousands of scouts from across the nation. Miranda-Barlett had a blast (literally) waking up to a bugle and participating in scuba diving, knife throwing and camaraderie. After all, keeping oneself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight as the Boy Scout Pledge dictates has to be fun at least once in a while. And almost certainly more.


Whether it’s cleaning the environment, white water rafting in Wisconsin or selling boxes of cookies, these girls have grown up finding themselves, Girl Scout style. Seniors Julia O’Donnell and Lydia Somers have survived two troops and are still going strong. They both started as Daisy Girl Scouts when they were five years old. “I remember when I first joined Girl Scouts. I loved it. We always did fun activities. It was a creative outlet where you could choose your own activities,” O’Donnell said. As O’Donnell got older, Girl Scouts became more than just fun activities. To her, Girl Scouts became “a wonderful organization that lets you reach out to others and make a difference in the world.” Just like O’Donnell, Somers enjoyed Girl Scouts and saw it as a positive experience to her childhood. “[Girl Scouts] taught me not to let expectations set what you want to do,” Somers said. Growing up, both girls participated in service projects around the community such as teaching crafts to senior citizens, picking up litter, deforesting prairies, planting trees and volunteering at Girl Scout events like World Thinking Day, where young Girl Scouts learn about different countries and cultures,

Don’t idle, turn off your car when you’re stopped.

as well as camping trips in Colorado. “We had the world’s best scavenger hunt that people still make jokes about today,” Somers said. “It was created to be impossible. . . . There is a lot of interesting stuff out there that you don’t notice until you look for it.” During all their fun, these Girl Scouts have gotten some serious work done. Both O’Donnell and Somers have completed their silver award. Somers, along with Ivy Vance’12, redid the Penn Elementary nature area and brought together many younger Girl Scouts to help clean it up on Earth Day. O’Donnell also used her silver award to help the environment by integrating recycling programs into businesses like the Iowa Children’s Museum and the Wynd Trec Farm, where she still runs the recycling operation and publicized her program to the Summer of the Arts. Not stopping at silver, O’Donnell is now going for the gold award, which is the highest award a Girl Scout can receive. She is planning on organizing a workshop to teach girls how to use a sewing machine to make reusable grocery bags. Along with everything else, O’Donnell has had an extraordinary experience.When she received the Daisy award for all her service hours, she gave an extraordinary speech accepting the award. Because she showed amazing public speaking skills, she started to give speeches at different fundraising events and became a member of the council board of directors for Girl Scouts. In 2009 she was invited to go to the National Delegate Convention and learned how a non-profit organization works. With all these opportunities these girls agree that staying in Girl Scouts was the best decision. “It is cool to be a Girl Scout,” Somers said. “Especially around cookie time.” PHOTO COURTESY OF//LYDIA SOMERS ‘11 [From Left] Ashley Albright ’12, Sarah Conner ’12, Erin Means ’12, Molly Kosiarek ’11, Abbie Ronumo’12, Lydia Somers ’11 and Ivy Vance ’12, all members of Girl Scout Troop 1076, pose on top of a mountain in Colorado.


12 feature



Joe Henderson ’12 ... fast food


Definitely to break the ‘addiction.’ I’ve tried to cut back on the fast food before, but I always give in. As a Catholic, Lent is really important to me, so I’m able to stick with it. As of now, any sort of fast food sounds really gross to me. Also because I’m concerned about my health. I exercise a lot, but that means nothing if I’m stopping at McDonald’s on the way home from school. It’s going surprisingly well. The first week or so was hard. I was really tempted to swing by a food place while driving around. As for how I feel, I feel a whole lot better than I used to. Both physically and mentally. My mom’s really happy about it. She’s a doctor, so my eating fast food always bothered her. Some of my friends are disappointed. They lost a fast food buddy. I’m going to try not to. I think I’ll try to make this one stick. I’ll go to McD’s occasionally, like on a road trip or something, but I’m really going to try and cut back.

Elizabeth Vandenberg ’12

... ice cream To be a better Catholic, I thought, hey, why not give [ice cream] up for Lent? Also, my mother is always hounding me about the amount of dessert I have. She doesn’t like it when I eat all the ice cream. No dessert equals less commentary on my ice cream intake. So as a courtesy to my mother and to end the inevitable scrupples over who ate the last of the ice cream, I gave up ice cream.

Bennett Thompson ’12


... meat


My family commonly eats meat at nearly every meal, and I realized this was more meat than I even wanted to eat. I figured that if I were to go a period (40 days) without meat, it would not only break my reliance on meat, but it would cause my family to consume less meat as well. It sounded like a good idea to me. Plus, it’s slightly religious based, because for Catholics, Lent is a period of self-denial in order to grow in our understanding of what is important in life. Food is obviously important to me.

Joey Abreu ’13 ... Fox News For Lent, I gave up watching Fox News. Nikilesh Rao ’13 and I use to always argue about politics during our Spanish class, but now that I’m out of the loop, we pay more attention in class.

Start a compost in your backyard. It improves soil and diverts methane-producing waste from the landfill.

Saturday, April 23rd

at West High

9:00 A.M.

against Cedar Falls

1:00 P.M.

against Waterloo West

The first 100 followers will be entered into a drawing for a $25 Panchero’s gift card!

Follow the West Side Story on twitter @wsspaper

14 A&E

Whose burger is best?


Red’s Alehouse

A Short’s

By the time we ate at Red’s, we had eaten more hamburgers than any human being should ever consume in one sitting. However, Reds’ burgers were so delicious that we couldn’t stop ourselves from eating more. The Black & Bleu burger was stacked with cheese and peppered with delicous cajun spices, and the Alehouse burger was comparably fantastic (especially the sweet onion tangles). Overall, Red’s food was simply fantastic, making us wish we had come even hungrier.

Hamburg Inn

B+ Okoboji Grill


A- Blackstone


The hometown taste of Hamburg Inn never fails to please. Generous toppings on every burger perfectly complemented the patty, bun and sides that we have all come to expect from this quality local establishment. The bleu cheese burger was dripping with cheese and the California burger was piled high with avocado and pico de gallo. The Swiss mushroom burger made high marks as well, with liberal amounts of Swiss cheese and mushrooms (duh…). Although the meat patty of the burger was not the best we tasted, the fact that Hamburg Inn also offers your choice of two sides with every burger, ranging from the obvious French fries to the unexpected Greek salad, while keeping prices affordable more than compensated for the mediocre meat.

The Vine

Although Iowa City is filled to the brim with sports bars, the Vine’s burgers are some of the best. The bleu cheese burger had just the right amount of cheese so that it was extremely flavorful without being messy or overpowering. The mushroom Swiss burger was very similar, striking the perfect balance of meat and toppings. The service, however, left much to be desired. While the food arrived at average speed, the restaurant had left the avocado off the California burger we ordered, instead serving us just a plain cheeseburger. Still, this unintentional cheeseburger was quite tasty, just like every burger we ate there.



Short’s is definitely the standout of the group. With 20 burgers to choose from and a variety of homemade black bean burgers sure to please any vegetarian, Short’s was indubitably without flaw and sure to please every audience. From the incredibly overloaded Essex (red pepper mayo, red peppers and mushrooms to the brim) that could barely fit in our mouths (fine, she did say that) to the more demure bleu cheese (slightly skimpy on the cheese), not one of us was unhappy. The secret was in the deliciously juicy patty and the unique combinations of flavors that complement each other perfectly.

The quality of Okoboji’s burgers can be easily boiled down to one word - subpar. Don’t get us wrong - they are not bad burgers - we just feel that there are just so many better options if your mouth is hankering for some burger action (that’s the weird thing she said), because theirs were lacking in both deliciousness and juicyness. In fact, after putting our burgers down following the first bite, we felt no urge to continue eating because our appetites had simply not been piqued. But Okoboji did have one redeeming quality - their fries, both seasoned and unseasoned, which were worth every penny.

Blackstone offered a new take on the mushroom and Swiss burger. It was presented as an open-faced sandwich with a mushroom glaze on top. The result was a delectable and unique burger unlike anything we had sampled thus far. The quality of the meat was top-notch as well, but the real highlight was the sides. The homemade seasoned potato chips were much better than anticipated, with seasoning that made them extremely addictive. The fries were also outstanding, with just the right consistency without too much grease. Although it was slightly more pricey than other places, the experience was overall good.

Keep reusable bags in your car so you have them every time you shop.



15 A & E

THE MONTHLY CD REVIEW by pombie silverman

of the month

1992 Mercury Sable

Suzanne Moore ‘13 “The air conditioner is broken, and every time you turn on the heater it smells really strongly of syrup.”

“It has a ton of miles on it. 612,258 to be exact.”

“The ash tray and cigarette lighter part of the dashboard is hanging on the floor by a wire. I don’t know how to fix it, so it just stays that way.”




Femme Fatale

In a media world full of Lady Gaga imitators, Britney Spears’ seventh studio album brings a much-needed change to the airwaves, returning to the princess of pop’s original form. Spears comes back strong by returning to her genuine style of catchy, beat-thumping club tracks. Femme Fatale opens with “Till the World Ends,” a catchy, post-apocalyptic dance number that has already dominated the radio with its “ohwoa-woa-woa” hook. Although Spears’ voice is highly auto-tuned (similar to 2007’s Blackout), she pulls it off amazingly, especially with the helping of working with super producers like Max Martin and Dr. Luke. Once again, Britney is on a roll, sure to break out several hit singles from this CD. Despite being in the industry for so long, Spears’ new album is so Britney that she doesn’t need to pull an “Alejandro,” or “Born this Way,” to rule the charts.

Wiz Khalifa Rolling Papers

“The radio is from the ’70s. The former owner said he put it in because he just had it laying around.”


Britney Spears

If you only listened to Wiz Khalifa’s debut single, “Black and Yellow,” you’re missing out. Rolling Papers, Khalifa’s third album, continues the theme partying and “rolling papers” (as the title suggests), each song plastered with clever lyrics and Kid Cudi-esque vibes. Although this may initially sound like a typical hip-hop album, with key tracks like “Star of the Show” and “No Sleep,” Rolling Papers is sure to roll your world! WSS: Kiss me, ki-ki kiss me, infect me with your love and _______.... ROSENTHAL: then go see a doctor. WSS: Sticks and stones may break my bones but chains and whips _________.... ROSENTHAL: are better than stones. WSS: I’m beautiful in my way cause God makes no mistakes I’m on the right track baby _______.... ROSENTHAL: so hop on my train. WSS: All my life I’ve been good, but now, I’m thinking_______..... ROSENTHAL: bad is better.


Dictionary word of the month...

sympathy seeker

A person whose status updates on facebook are solely for the purpose of gaining sympathy. I love laughing at Susie’s statuses. She’s such a sympathy seeker so it’s hilarious that no one cares enough to comment on them.

Unplug appliances like your TV and computer and turn down your thermostat when you go on vacation.


16 feature

Extra Credit: Amber Swenson BY ALISSA ROTHMAN

The first time Melissa Sexton ’09 (known as Missy) met English and learning center instructor Amber Swenson, she was yelled at. “I have a strict policy in the success center, because students wander in there to talk to their friends... and I remember Missy peeked in to give her friend a present on Valentine Day, and I had reached the end of my rope and snapped. To this day she reminds me that the first time I ever spoke to her I yelled at her,” Swenson said. Suffice to say, the two were not immediately friends. It wasn’t until Sexton’s junior year, when she was with Swenson in the learning center, that the two became close. “I tend to fight for the underdogs. If it’s the Superbowl and one team is losing, I want them to win. I have empathy for people who tend to have a reputation due to certain characteristics or circumstances beyond their control, and this was definitely the case for Missy. She was no longer living at home at 16 and was working to support herself.What 16-year-old has to pay bills, live [alone] and take care of themselves?” Swenson said. Swenson began giving Sexton rides to school after Sexton’s car broke down. As she spent more time with Sexton, Swenson came to see a side of her too often overlooked. Swenson began helping Sexton with her school work and helped her establish better relations with teachers.

“When I was in high school I wasn’t exactly the easiest student to deal with. Amber was one of the few teachers that could motivate me to do work . . . she made sure that I kept on track in my classes. If I had homework I needed to do, she would be on my case until I got it done. . . if it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have graduated from high school. Living on my own, working full time and going to high school took its toll on me some days. She was always there for me; whether it was a personal issue or an issue I was having at school. I knew I could go talk to her about anything . . . the days I felt like quitting school, she would always remind me how far I’d made it already and that I was almost done and how important it was to get my diploma,” Sexton said. With Swenson’s help, Sexton was able to graduate her senior year. Currently, Sexton is working at Optima Life Services helping mentally ill individuals and at REM Iowa aiding children with intellectual disabilities.Though she is currently not attending school, Sexton is hoping to start college in a year or two to get a special education degree. “Amber definitely impacted my decision to become a teacher. I already love helping people . . . and after seeing how much a teacher can impact a student’s life, I decided I wanted to combine that with my other love of working with kids who are intellectually disabled,” Sexton said. Swenson and Sexton still keep in contact, talking on the phone or grabbing some sushi together. “Missy has showed me that you should never judge others without knowing what their background is.


For most, a house is a haven. It is a place to escape the stresses of society and school while being free to peacefully be oneself. Unfortunately, not all people have it so lucky. For “Mary,” a West High student who wishes to remain anonymous, family tensions make life at home more uncomfortable and unhappy than that at school. However, she has found her haven in room 122 of West High School with English teacher and COLORS adviser Kerri Barnhouse.

16 16

In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, the WSS decided to check out these teachers, who have gone above and beyond to help their students.

“[Mary] has issues for her own sexuality as well as passions for things that her family wouldn’t approve of,” Barnhouse said. “She’s an intellectually curious person. She questions things, but her environment doesn’t support that . . . what she’s found here is a place that nurtures that side of her.” With difficulties at home, Barnhouse has been helping Mary by giving her counseling and emotional support while helping her develop coping skills. “I came out to Barnhouse,” said Mary. “She’s just been helping me a lot . . .

PHOTO USED WITH PERMISSION FROM//MISSY SEXTON Missy Sexton ‘09 dressed up as Swenson for Dress Like Your Teacher Day during a spirit day her senior year. Swenson encouraged Sexton and helped her graduate from high school.

On the exterior, Missy was just one more punk, but underneath she was living on her own at sixteen, learning to care for herself. All she needed was to be given a chance,” Swenson said.

[during] days where I feel like crying, I feel like I can talk to her.” The two met when Mary enrolled in one of Barnhouse’s classes. Barnhouse was immediately impressed by Mary’s prowess as a student and Mary was equally appreciative of Barnhouse’s personal support. “People wouldn’t know that a lot of the time I’m not happy [if Barnhouse wasn’t there],” she said. “I’m very good at talking it out, but to few people.” Barnhouse is excited to see what Mary will become after high school. The two plan to stay in touch.

“I think she will do wonderfully,” Barnhouse said. “She already influences people . . . she has a humble, unassuming, but powerful presence.” “It’s not a question of if we’ll keep in touch,” added Mary. “More like how many times I’d email her a month, asking for advice.” As personal as Mary’s story may be, other students at West High can learn from her experience. “There are teachers who are more than good educators,” she said. “They’re wonderful people. Don’t be afraid to talk to them.”

Pick up your pet’s poop. Leaving it on the ground causes harmful bacteria to enter waterways through run off the next time it rains.

all the right stuff

The First Amendment ensures five basic rights: freedom of the press, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom to assemble and the right to petition the government. When students’ rights conflict with school policy it becomes a struggle for power. The WSS takes a look back at the battle between rights and wrong in the Iowa City high schools. BY JULIANN SKARDA




TRENCH COAT SCANDAL On April 21, 1999, a number of West High students wore trench coats to school as they had been doing throughout the year. This would have been of little significance, but the previous day was the day that two student shooters, wearing trench coats, killed 13 people and injured 24 others at Columbine High School. The students had been wearing the trench coats to imitate characters in a popular video game, Doom. After complaints from students and faculty, Principal Jerry Arganbright asked the students to remove their trench coats, and they agreed without complaint. “I think everyone was trying to be extra sensitive to the emotional follow up to such a tragic school event,” Arganbright said. One trench coat clad student who was wearing army pants and combat boots similar to the outfit of the shooters did not wish to change his clothing. “It was my understanding that other students were uncomfortable, scared and a little upset. The student was sent to the office and later received the support of his mother to be able to wear the outfit,” said AP Government teacher Brady Shutt.

In 2003, a male West High student came to school wearing a sundress over a pair of jeans. He was asked to change on the grounds that it was a disruption to the learning environment. The student then turned to the Colors group seeking support. “I asked him if he often wore women’s clothing and he said no. He said that he had lost a bet,” said COLORS advisor Kerri Barnhouse. “I told him that if he wanted to express himself by wearing women’s clothing, then I would support him. But because it was as a punishment for losing a bet, he was offending any student who would like to wear clothing traditionally meant for the opposite gender.” Cyndy Woodhouse, an English teacher at West, had the student in her debate class at the time. “I ignored it during my class, and other than some whispering, it was not a distraction. It wasn’t until later when I learned that it was because of a bet that I felt upset about it. He did not dress that way to be organic and genuine and that was why I didn’t support him,” said Woodhouse.

SURVEY RESULTS The WSS surveyed 232 West High students to see how they interprete their First Amendment rights True or False: In Iowa, student publications cannot be legally censored prior to publication by a principal or any other school official. The correct answer is true.

48% 52% FALSE TRUE

What percentage of students know their first amendment rights?

38% DON’T 62% DO

A student suddenly wears a trench coat to school after a school shooting that receives national attention. Should he be forced to take it off for potentially causing a disturbance?

16% NO

84% YES




In October of 2007 the cover of The Little Hawk boasted one word in large black font: hate. Underneath it were pie charts showing the results of a survey of City High’s student body. The charts showed the student body’s opinion towards Caucasian, African American, and lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender students by classifying their views of the group as favorable, unfavorable or neutral. City High’s principal at the time, Mark Hansen, confiscated the paper on the grounds that it was causing near fights and was a disruption to the learning environment. The Little Hawk staff then decided to turn to the media. “We decided it was best to publicize the issue so that people in the area . . . would know what happened. There was a pretty big outpouring of support for The Little Hawk and I think when school officials see that the community strongly opposes censorship, they’re less likely to do the same thing again,” said Adam B. Sullivan, Editor-in-Chief of The Little Hawk at the time. Though the staff was never able to retrieve or distribute the issues on campus, they still found a positive side to the outcome. “I still think we were successful. We brought due attention to the issue of school censorship and stirred a lot of really important conversations,” Sullivan said. This May 3 marks the 18th World Press Freedom Day which celebrates and strives for the rights of journalists across the globe.

A male high school student wears a dress to school after losing a bet. Should he be required to change to prevent a potential disturbance?

59% NO

41% YES

A student newspaper publishes an article about racism that incites verbal and physical conflict in the school. Should the papers that are circulating throughout the institution be pulled as a response?

81% NO

19% YES

THE DAY OF SILENCE Once a year, select students in schools around the world choose not to speak. For eight years members of the COLORS group, along with other students, have been participating in the National Day of Silence for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender awareness. “We hope to achieve awareness for the students who are still forced to be silent about their sexuality, orientation, and gender identity in schools especially. Every day, we talk about the subject and this is the one day we put ourselves in their shoes and doing so makes our statement even louder,” said Shannon Sullivan ’11, a four year member of COLORS. Though the participants are not supported by all faculty members and peers, they are still within school rules according to Arganbright. “We do not have an official policy for ‘Day of Silence.’ It is totally up to the individual student if they choose to participate and there have not been any instructional or classroom disruptions caused by this event. I would not expect that to happen in the future as well,” Arganbright said. For the most part, though, the COLORS group are encouraged in their plight. “Most of the feedback is positive. It amazes all the members every year how many people support the cause, and most have never come to a COLORS meeting. Staff is very supportive [for] most part and we have made compromises with the staff,” Sullivan said.

To draw attention to the oppression of people with different sexual orientations, some students refuse to speak during the school day in the event known as the Day of Silence. Is their refusal to speak or participate in class permissible?

62% NO

38% YES

As a response to the Day of Silence, some students wear verses of the bible that condemn homosexuality around school in what is known as the Day of Dialogue. Is this permissible?

52% NO

48% YES

|20 feature| LEFT: The cast of The Princess Bride runs through a dress rehearsal Tuesday, April 12 after school. BELOW: Madelin Otterbein ’12 and Grant Linden ’12 share a tender moment on stage during the final scenes of the performance.


BOTTOM RIGHT: Grant Linden ‘12, playing the part of Wesley, battles Inigo Montoya, played by Javier MirandaBartlett ‘12, during a dress rehearsal. BOTTOM LEFT: Tony Phinney ’13, Javier Miranda-Bartlett ’12, Paul Curry ’14, Hanky Song ’13 and Grant Linden ’12 perfect their performances. LEFT: Drew Mason ’12 gets her stage makeup done before the cast’s dress rehearsal Tuesday, April 12.


The Princess Bride


For months, over 50 West High students have poured their hearts into Theatre West’s spring production, The Princess Bride. From set building to production and the actors who appeared on the stage last weekend, April 15 and 16, students are involved with every aspect of the play. “[The play] is really exciting because you get to watch a big production come together from the bottom up,” said Nick Gerken ’12, who played the Impressive Clergyman. PHOTO BY//JOJO SILVERMAN Emerson Grow ’12 describes the experience as “awesome.” “I liked learning how to fence,” Grow said. Grow was a part of Prince Humperdink’s Brute Squad. Congratulations, Theatre West for another great year of performances.



21 sports

Racing to the finish line

PHOTO BY//LINDSAY BEST On April 5th, Isaac Jensen ’13 ran in the Hollingsworth meet at the West High track. The boys track team competed against seven other Iowa teams in their division.


Potential began high, hard work has honed it and with outdoor season right around the corner, the boys’ track and field team is ready to explode off the starting block. According to head track coach Brian Martz, the team has plenty of potential. With a flood of ready and able underclassmen, as well as strong upperclassmen leaders, the Trojans have a bright future ahead of them. But, they will have to work together to achieve success. Fortunately, the indoor season was a great opportunity to break up the early season training and learn how to compete. “We have a very talented group that could have a lot of success. Some kids have never been in track before or are just getting started. The indoor meets aren’t scored so it allows the athletes to focus on their own personal efforts. They need to gain confidence in

their own abilities before the added pressure of team contributions that come with the scored outdoor meets,” Martz said. In addition to the indoor season, general winter conditioning has helped athletes work on events not practiced yet, such as discus, relay exchanges and high jump. According to assistant sprint coach Jim Walden, the team has also worked especially hard on core fitness, in order to reduce injuries from last year. “Injuries happen every year,” said Walden. “We know they are going to happen, but we do everything we can to prevent them from happening.” In order to stay fit, fast and injury-free, Martz encourages athletes to focus on giving all of their effort to the sport for the “in-season” and to refrain from all other unnecessary activities that put them at risk of injury that could easily be avoided. “If [the team] cares about how they perform in track they will [maintain a healthy lifestyle]. Most high

MEET THE RUNNERS Jonathan Williams ’11

Events: 100, 200 and 4x100 Favorite pre-race food: Bean burritoes and blue gatorade Meet superstition: Must wear Under Armor compression shorts Best sports experience: Watching the home meet 4x4

school aged kids don’t understand the importance of the load/recovery cycle and usually end up with fatigue issues that lead to injuries and a period of nonparticipation. We want to prevent that from happening.” But as the saying goes, slow and steady wins the race, and the team is counting on the guys that have been working hard since the beginning of winter conditioning. Martz believes the rest of the team can achieve main goals such as winning the Hollingsworth Relays and the MVC Divisional meet and possibly making it to Drake and State, if they put forth the vast amounts of effort necessary. “The guys that care about what they are doing are improving,” he said. “The potential of our team is huge. We have a very talented group that could have a lot of success if they would just get out of their own way.”

Lucas Brenneman ’12 Events: Hurdles and high jump Favorite pre-race food: Pasta Pump-up song: “Ima Go Getta” by Lil Wayne Meet superstition: If you drop the baton you’ll get bad luck Best sports experience: Running hurdles at state compiled by pombie silverman

Borrow, don’t buy - if you only require something for temporary use, ask around instead of buying a new one.


Running towards first 22 sports

Girls track living up to high standards BY CAROLINE FOUND


hen the standards have been set high, not only does it take hard work, but pride and determination to beat those standards. Standards, in this case, are filling the shoes of a senior class that was a part of three state championships over a four-year time period. The West High girls’ track team is at it again, fighting for their second-straight state championship, adding to the list of six state championships in the past ten years, hoping to make it seven. “Though we lost some outstanding seniors, this year’s team looks to be just as strong as last years,” Coach Parker said. The Women of Troy will have a few new names on the roster this year, especially some coming from underclassman. Kristina Bauer ’14 will step into the role of a leg in the 4x100 relay, and competing in short sprint events. Sophomore McKennan Cronbaugh and Courtney Dauber look to contribute even more to the success of the team, as they contribute a strong leg to sprint relays. In the past five years, West High has lost only two meets. But Ashley Weinschenk ’11 is confident that the success will continue throughout this year. “Even though we lost a lot of talent, the girls have all stepped it up in practice to fill in the gaps and so far have been faster and stronger,” Weinschenk said. Coach Parker is looking forward to both the major and minor goals of this year’s track season. But there seems to be a trick in order to get the repeat in the state championship. “Stay healthy,” Parker said. “Our goal as always is to win another team state title. West High has won 4 of the last 5 team state titles and we should contend for our 7th title overall this year. After that it would to be MVC Champions and to complete another undefeated season. West High has only lost 2 meets in the last 5 years, so continuing on with that level of consistent success is an important goal of our team every year,” Parker said. Not only is the team enjoying the success on the track, but the team chemistry this year is really clicking. “This year’s team is closer than in years past,” Weinschenck said. “We have fun in practice a lot more, but we still get what we need to do, done. The interesting characters on the team this year make practice the highlight of my day,” she said.


PHOTO BY//LINDSAY BEST Track practices may be tough, but top runners Jessica Shull ’12 (left) and Ally Disterhoft ’13 (right) still make sure to have fun with their running.

MEET THE RUNNERS compiled by caroline found

Courtney Dauber ’13

Cara Jansen ’11

Favorite food: I really enjoy eating eggs after track practice. I’m not sure why, I always get the craving Favorite track memory: Winning the 4x200 at state this year Music: “Look At Me Now”- Chris Brown Events: 4x200, 4x100, long jump and open 200 are my main events.

Favorite food: Spaghetti Favorite Track Memory: going to the Drake Relays last year with Micaela Haight, Courtney Fritz, and Christiana Fairfield Music: Jenny Hanson ’12’s Thrower CD she made for all the throwers Events: Shot Put and Discus

Cut out paper towels and paper napkins and switch to cloth.

23 sports


Big cleats to fill

compiled by leah murray

Mueng Sunday ‘13

Years playing soccer: 11 years Favorite Pump-up song: “I Made It” by Kevin Rudolf Favorite pre-game food: Snickers Fun Fact: I’m Nigerian Favorite TV Show: Fresh Prince of BelAire Favorite Cleats: Adi Pure III While striking the ball at practice, Marco Cacho ‘12 works on his technique


The varsity boys’ soccer team, after having over half the team graduate last year, are out to work hard and rebuild the team. They have big cleats to fill this year after last year’s varsity team won the state championship. This year’s team is younger than previous teams have been. Returning varsity player Tanner Schilling ’11 doesn’t think that this is necessarily a bad thing. It means the team will have to work harder to achieve their goals. There are only two returning starting varsity player, who are Alex Troester ’12 and Schilling and nine other returning varsity players. With the team being made up of only 25 players, this means that over half are new to the varsity team. Even with these new players, Brad Stiles, the boys’ varsity soccer coach for 10 years, is still seeing talent and ball handling skills. Some of the key players so far this year have been Troester, Mueng Sunday ’13, Paris Martins ’13 and Aaron Miller ’13. “These guys have talent, skills with the ball at their feet and the ability to play any position on the field,” said Stiles. With most of the boys on varsity now joining


from various different club soccer teams around the area, they don’t have a lot of prior expierence playing together. This, however, does not phase Troester. “Last year, pretty much everyone had played together at some point before high school. This year, a lot of us are from different club teams. However, we are very coachable. You can also tell that we want to work hard to get better and learn from our loses,” said Troester. The boys plan on continuing to work hard so they can achieve some of their goals. “Some of my goals for the team are beating City High, winning the conference and then winning state,” said Schilling. Last year cross town rival team, City High, played and lost to the Trojans at the state championship game 3-1. The Trojans and Little Hawks will meet again this year on Tuesday, April 26 for a night game at the University of Iowa fields. Both the boys’ and girls’ soccer teams have been working together this year to fund raise for the new soccer field that will be built behind West High. This has been very exciting for the players. The Trojans and Women of Troy will have a field to call home with the start of next season. “I look forward to the day that I get to the top of the hill and look down at our field,” Stiles said.

Reuse gift bags and wrapping paper (and maybe even re-gift what was inside).

Clay Walker ‘11

Years playing soccer: 13 years Favorite Pump-up song: “Goodbye” by Wiz Khalifa Favorite pre-game food: Snickers Fun Fact: I’m going to Luther College next year Favorite Movie: The Lion King Favorite TV Show: Modern Family Favorite Cleats: I LOVE My adizeros


24 sports

PHOTO BY//JOJO SILVERMAN Lola White-Baer ‘11 hits a forehand at varsity practice at West High on April 14. After finishing second at state last year, the girls are ready to take a second swing at state this year.

Tennis makes some racket BY JULIANN SKARDA



After taking second at the state championship tournament last year, losing only to Ames, the Women of Troy are determined to take home the gold this year. “One of my main goals is … to win team state since we were so close last year,” said varsity member Lola WhiteBaer ’11. The team had a successful start to their season with a 9-0 win against Cedar Rapids Xavier. “Our first meet went outstandingly. Everyone won all of their matches and it was a great start to our season. We plan to keep improving as the season goes on and gain more experience,” said Addy Riley ’13. Lilli Oetting’11 and Lola White-Baer ’11, the winners of the state doubles championship last season, have come a long way from their early years.


AND PUSH YOU .” Addy Riley ’13

“Lilli and I started playing together in like fourth grade when we did a North Dodge Tennis summer camp together. We were super bad,” White-Baer said. Even the unpredictable April showers can’t faze the team. “Although it has rained a couple of times, we usually move indoor to Klotz tennis courts across the street from West. The main thing that bothers everyone when playing is the wind; you never know which way way the ball is going to bounce,” said teammate Ashlin Riley ’11.

Always print double-sided and reuse the backs of old one-pagers.

“Playing in the wind and the cold is the worst, but I guess we’ll have to play in bad conditions during matches anyway so we might as well get used to it,” said Elena Wilson ’13. The team will be looking a great season with the support of their teammates. “I am very thankful to be with such a great team who is very supportive of one another. It’s great to be surrounded by people who support you at what you do and push you to do better,” said Addy.


CITY-WEST SOCCER GAMES At the University of Iowa field

Girls: 5:00 P.M. Boys: 7:00 P.M.

MAY 2 MAY 3 MAY 4 MAY 5 MAY 6 MAY 9 MAY 10 MAY 11 MAY 12 MAY 13

AM Chemistry PM Psychology AM Computer Science A & Spanish AM Calculus AB & Calculus BC AM English Literature AM German PM US History & European History AM Biology PM Physics B & Physics C AM Government AM French PM Statistics AM Macroeconomics PM Microeconomics AM Spanish Literature

NO SCHOOLon Friday, April 29th

What can seem to be just a number to a spectator can be a whole story to the athlete. Here are some of West High’s athletes’ stories.



Katie Kelley ‘’11 “I was assigned it freshmen year for volleyball and wanted to stay consistent. Not many people like it because they tend to think it’s unlucky but that’s sort of a reason I like it so much. I get to wear it in college next year too which I am very happy about.” AJ Nusser ’11 “My number for fooball was 69, it really means a lot to me because... well, you know.”

69 02

Ally Disterhoft ’13 “When I was younger, I used to have the biggest crush on Iowa men’s basketball player Jeff Horner, so ever since then I’ve always worn the number two.”


Tanner Schilling ’11 “I chose the number five because my favorite player in the world was number five. This player also happened to headbutt a guy in the chest in the world cup final. I have had it since about 6th or 7th grade and on every team that I have played on I have been number 5.” 26


Anthony Brown ’12 I have always wanted to be number one but my first year on the flag football team this kid got it because his dad was the coach and he gave me number two … but ever since then I wanted to wear number two because I wanted to show them I didn’t have to have number one to be good. Also my favorite player Taylor Maze wore it in college.”


26 sports


Emily Graf ’11 “I picked the number three as my jersey number because it’s been my lucky number since I was little. When I was three years old I got my favorite stuffed animal ever for Easter and that’s when I decided it was my lucky number. Also whenever I look back that was just a great age, life was so wonderful then.”


Alli O’Deen ’11 “My birthday is on the 28th, so I chose 14 because its half of that number and high school numbers are usually lower numbers. Of course, I had to stick with it because I’m extremely superstitious and I also really enjoyed wearing that number because I got my own cheer, “O’Deen 14,” which was super cool!”

Read newspapers online and check out magazines from the library instead of subscribing.

27 sports

The Karate Kid Starring Michael Brophy










Mike Brophy ‘131 does not take taekwando lightly. Brophy started tae kwan do eight years ago in Michigan, and carried his experience with him when he moved to Iowa. “I enjoy taekwando because it gives more variety in competition, when I spar I can practice and use different techniques to win where as other sports you have to score in one way,” he said. Brophy practices at the Recreation Center and Anderson’s ATA (American Taekwondo Association) in North Liberty. Brophy’s main teacher is Mr. Anderson, a fifth degree black belt. “He never lets you give up and pushes you over the limit,” Brophy said of Anderson. If Brophy even has limits, that is. He is already a decorated global competitor. In fact, Brophy’s favorite memory happened a two years ago when he went to Little Rock, Arkansas, for Worlds, the biggest tournament in our organization. Out of 50 people, Brophy scored second in sparring. “That was the first time I felt I could do better than my past performances,” Brophy said. Now, Brophy is ranked the top ten world champions where ten people fight to gain the world champion title, Leave notes on a chalkboard or dry erase board instead of paper.

MICHAEL BROPHY ‘13 one of taekwando’s highest honors. When practicing, Brophy enjoys helping other students with forms or sparring. “It feels great to see them use the help I give to better themselves,” he said. Brophy has even helped his own family get interested in the sport. “My mother and brother started after I did, they support me when I compete and I support them as well.We all travel together when a tournament is coming up,” he said. A support system is necessary because taekwando is both emotional and physically challenging. “I have been able to handle my emotions better, and physically, I don’t sit around all day like I did when I was little,” he said. Although Brophy plans to continuing his taekwando career after high school, he doesn’t see himself going pro in anything other than medicine. “Even though it means more work, taekwando teaches life lessons which help in school work,” he said.


28 sports



Meet the freshman boys who snagged four of the top six spots on the varsity team.

If you’re planning on using their doubles partners to tell twins Adam and Ben Dellos ’14 apart, you’re out of luck. Adam and Ben will be playing doubles together on the West High varsity tennis team this year. They also both made the top six for singles. The twins have been playing tennis together since they were six, when they picked up the hobby because courts were close to their home in Bettendorf. Once they realized how much fun it was, they practiced more and continued their tennis careers when they moved to Iowa City in fifth grade. Despite their identical tennis backgrounds, each twin will bring different strengths to the team. According to head tennis coach Mitch Gross, Adam has some of the best footwork on the team. This is an overlooked component in tennis, but it is something that can’t easily be taught. Ben, on the other hand, “has a way to grind out wins. Sometimes you have to win ugly, and Adam Dellos’14 Ben is okay with winning ugly,” Gross said. Ben Dellos’14 Playing on the same doubles team may prove to be a struggle, since their competitive attitude sometimes gets in the way of supporting each other. However, the team aspect of high school tennis is beginning to change this. Most people “We’re trying to support each other now that we’re on the same team, because we are call it off-season, but since doubles partners,” Adam said. Blake Oetting ’14 spent the months leading Even though they may not always get along, being twins does have its benefits that up to tennis season hitting, lifting and conditioning, can help their game. the term doesn’t quite seem accurate. Oetting’s early work “I like having someone on the team that knows my game better than got him in shape to grab the number two spot on the West varsity anybody else,” Ben said. tennis line-up. Gross hopes the twins are able to get along on the court and avoid Oetting kept busy during the pre-season, hitting six days a week, lifting power struggles about who calls the shots. at Phil Johnson Strength and Conditioning two days a week and attending “I would assume there should be a connection…I West’s conditioning workouts one to two times a week. hope they realize this is a real He focused on improving his footwork and getting “more miles per hour” on his opportunity.” serve. “I think [my hard work] will translate very well because the things I worked on in the off-season will help me in the high school season,” Oetting said. Aside from preparation, Gross attributes Oetting’s success to his strokes and his natural Since the age of five, talent. Karl Wenzel ’14 has been working on “The good news for Blake is that he has natural tennis ability. He doesn’t know exactly perfecting his tennis game, and this year he’s how to use it yet, but that’s a good sign,” Gross said. taking it to the big courts as the number three player in Oetting hopes to not only hone his own skills but also have a successful year as a the West varsity line-up. team. He started playing after watching his dad compete in tournaments “I want our team to make state, and then win state,” Oetting said. and hearing about his dad’s tennis career at Iowa State. Gross says that Oetting and the rest of the freshman on varsity this year are “I looked up to him and wanted to be like him,” said Wenzel about his “going to learn the expectations of high school tennis,” explaining that the decision to follow in his dad’s footsteps. dynamics are different playing for a team rather than for individual Although he has been playing since he was young, head coach Mitch Gross had success in a private tournament. never seen Wenzel play until the tennis tryouts this year. And he liked what he saw. Oetting recognizes this change, and knows he has to play Wenzel’s effort and dedication in practice have definitely put him on Gross’ radar. hard for the team’s sake. “Karl is one of the hardest workers I’ve ever had in my ten years of coaching,” Gross “You can’t just play for yourself; you have said. to play for the team. You can’t be According to Gross, he puts everything into conditioning and practice, and is a good selfish,” he said. role model for the team. These traits, coupled with his tennis skills, have prepared him for his spot on varsity. “Playing for West High is something I have always looked forward to. When I was younger, I worked towards being able to compete and I am excited to be part of this team,” Wenzel said. Wenzel is one of four freshmen on varsity, but he thinks the young team is capable of having a very successful season. “Even though our team is young, we have players who have a lot of tournament experience. I think our team is very motivated to do well.” Blake Oetting’14 Although Wenzel feels some pressure playing competitors older than him, he tries to “focus on the ball and what is in [his] control.” “Playing on varsity is a privilege and I try to give my best performance at every practice and in every match.” Karl Wenzel’14




e ttin g O e k Bla

Karl We


nze l

Carry your own to-go cup so you’re ready for java stops.

Dominating the field

29 sports

Alli Peterson’s ’14 soccer career is just beginning BY OLIVIA LOFGREN


lli Peterson ’14 didn’t go to California to head to the beach. She didn’t go to get famous. She traveled all the way to California for soccer, where she attended the National Development Camp (ODP) last winter. “I was chosen to go to this camp after making the 1996 Region II ODP team for my age group,” Peterson said. At the camp, there was a plethora of talented girls who got to work with college coaches as well as Brandi Chastain who played for the U.S. Women’s National team. “I learned a lot from all these coaches, and faced a lot of talented players from different regions. It was an amazing ex-


perience because it was the first time I had ever traveled on an airplane alone and I got to learn a lot about myself on and off the field,” Peterson said. This experience has also helped Peterson prepare for the West High soccer season, where she has achieved the rare feat of making the varsity team as a freshman. “Alli has made an impressive impact on our team. She is a very competitive player who possesses a lot of soccer skill and knowledge,” said West High varsity soccer coach Dave Rosenthal. “West’s season has helped me play a variety of positions that I normally wouldn’t get a chance to play,” Peterson said. Teammate Sarah Moore’11 is happy to have Peterson on their team this year. “Alli is a huge asset to the team. She is very talented and extremely en-


“Alli is a huge asset to the team. She is very talented and extremely enthusiastic.” Sarah Moore ’11

PETERSON’S PICKS compiled by olivia lofgren

FAVORITE FOOD: Ice cream FAVORITE COLOR: Turquoise FAVORITE MOVIE: 13 Going on 30 DREAM CAR: yellow Corvette IDOL: Beyonce FAVORITE SOCCER EXPERIENCE: Playing soccer in California with my ODP team

thusiastic.” Rosenthal also sees Peterson’s positive attitude as a major strength. “She’s a very positive person and I like her infectious enthusiasm that helps lift the team up.” One of team’s major goals (get it?) is to win state. “I know it may be a hard goal to reach, but I think there are a lot of talented players on our team, and if we keep working hard we might be able to reach that goal,” Peterson said. A smaller, more individual goal for Peterson is to beat Valley. “That’s the one team more than any other I am dying to play and beat,” she said. Looking back to kindergarten, where Peterson started her soccer career with Kickers she fell in love. “I have been in love with the game. It has been a part of my life for so long, and I couldn’t imagine my life without it. The past few years I have fallen even more in love with soccer than ever before” Peterson said. Striking the soccer ball at practice, Alli Peterson ’14 is a starting midfielder for the West High Women of Troy. Peterson adds a variety of skills to the team. Hoping to improve last season’s results of losing in the quarterfinals of state, Peterson hopes to beat Des Moines Valley and win a state championship.

Pack your lunch in a reusable containers (without ziplocs or paper bags).




30 opinion



Note: All Radish content is satirical and is not meant to be perceived as factual


Sometimes, having tiger blood and winning radically just isn’t enough. Dissatisfied with his life, Charlie Sheen has entered the presidential race with Mel Gibson as his running mate to represent the recently created “Total B****in’ Rock Stars from Mars” party. Thus far, Sheen is confident in his chances. “It’s going to be perfect,” Sheen said. “All we’re going to do is win.We’re going to spend the entire day just putting our wins in the record books. Losing’s for fools. Losing’s for amateurs.” Gibson was more difficult to interview, but eventually shared similar sentiments. “What are you looking at, sugar-****?” he greeted the interviewer. However, he went on to proclaim his surety of complete victory. “I’m such a god**mn f***ing nice guy that everybody f***ing loves me,” he said. “If they don’t love me, I’ll burn their f***ing house down. The out-

come of the election is obvious as f**k. Anybody who disagrees can b**w me, because I deserve it.” To solidify their party, Sheen and Gibson appointed numerous other trainwreck celebrities as potential holders of powerful positions in the government, assuming the pair wins the race. “Secretary? Isn’t that a horse?” asked Paris Hilton upon being informed that she would be the Secretary of State. “Wait, what? Daaaaayuumm, what’s going on he-“ said Lindsey Lohan, the prospective Attorney General, before blowing a .27 and passing out. Surprisingly enough, the “Total B****in’ Rock Stars from Mars” party is being viewed as a serious threat by both the Democrats and the Republicans. “You know, these guys are actually somewhat appealing,” said Barack Obama, the current president. “People love it when they do their absurd antics. It gets them attention. When we politicians mess up, the people are just disgusted. If I become a totally b****in’



Donald Trump runs for president with slogan “Vote for me, or you’re fired!’

As a response to Wisconsin senators’ attempt to take away their collective bargaining rights, Wisconsin working-class citizens protest by inventing “cheese and feathering” to embarrass state officials. It’s Friday.We we we so excited. Fun, fun, fun, fun. Except not really.

compiled by garrett anstreicher

compiled by madhu srikantha

High school girl’s topics of conversation in the months of April and May

Effort at the end of the year 30

rock star from mars myself, maybe my popularity will go up!” “It’s a bad situation for us,” said John Boehner, the Republican Speaker of the House. “Any mud-slinging is completely useless against these guys, and the sad part is that we don’t have any nominees that look much more appealing than they do. Sarah Palin would probably lose to Sheen if she ran. I honestly don’t know what we’re going to do.” As if to emphasize the threat they posed, both Sheen and Gibson had words of warning to say to their potential enemies in the race. “If you try running against me, you will die,” said Sheen. “Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body.” “**************************** ****************. So there,” added Gibson. And, of course, when Sheen was asked how he thought he was doing in the polls thus far, a single word sufficed: “Winning.”

Things that matter in the real world



10th 11th Grade


31 opinion

Quality of Life Index April


Mother nature hates us and wants us to suffer, and I can tell that this is true for several reasons - 1. It is JUST NOW in the year getting warm 2. The warmness is still volatile 3. I’m cold right now Plus3 PHOTO BY//DAVID HUANG Students and faculty show their support at a rally Monday outside district offices where both groups voiced their concerns. This upcoming Tuesday is the school board meeting where the budget cuts will be addressed.

Budge it, Terry! T

erry, you and your politics are ruining my day. Governor Branstad, in a sweeping sacrifice to rival Abraham’s, and as a means of combating the treacherous deficit that will eat your children and your reproductive organs (via chocolate fondue party, I hear), is calling for a policy of zero allowable growth for school districts next year. That means that the state aid per student will be stagnant, although the absolute value of school funding can increase. Now, here are some things that are true. Due to a little thing called inflation (stuff costs more in the future), a zero allowable growth policy for schools actually translates into a decrease in funding. The immediate effect on Iowa schools will be overall larger classes, a decrease in discretionary programs like drama or forensics and multiple teacher layoffs. Now, here’s something that doesn’t have to be true. West High, City High and the junior highs collectively will each have to let four teachers go before the next school year in order to manage its budget due to Branstad’s proposed policies. “Well, that seems reasonable, right?” my strawman said to me. Nope. Doesn’t make sense at all. According to the Iowa City Community School District Board Minutes, the district’s Central Administrative Office recently made several new hirings, including an administrative assistant for $42,000 and a Director of Informational


Technology Services for $109,000. Given that a starting teacher has a salary of $40,000, the implicit exchange rate here is that two members of the bureaucracy is worth more than four real life educators. But there’s a couple of other reasons we should opt to preserve teacher jobs over other options. We can first look at an argument of numbers, where, if hired, the ICCSD will have four administrative positions for every one thousand students (compared to the eight and a half of Cedar Rapids and the eight of Des Moines). We can even look at an economic argument, appealing to the idea that school education, when taken as a public investment, has the highest comparative return in relation to other state investments. But really, the easiest argument is the case appealing to your gut. “Four teachers” doesn’t just mean four people who stand up in front of a classroom and talk. “Four teachers” means four sources of education for hundreds of kids at a time that will be lost. “Four teachers” means four people who sacrifice their time and money for the welfare of people who they have no direct incentive to help. “Four teachers” means four friends, confidants and parental figures who will be conspicuously absent from staff next year. So save the teachers. I’ll teach every staff member of the Central Administrative Office how to use MicrosoftWord if you can make that guarantee.





@wsspaper #saveICteachers Find who to email here

Prom Hype

Since returning from spring break all I’ve heard come from the lips of any upperclassmen is “Prom.” I get it. It’s the greatest night of your life. But please, oh please, stop? Minus 1

Lollapalooza Lineup April 26th is my new favorite holiday. Plus 2

AP Testing

Studied? Me neither. This will be fun. Minus 3

The Office

A sad month for all lovers of The Office. Steve Carell, you will forever be in my heart. Minus 3

Being a senior

If you’re a senior plus 10 for almost being done with high school If you’re not a senior, for example, Olivia Lofgren, minus how ever many years you have been alive times 123219.3


8 (if you’re a senior) A really large negative number if you’re not

compiled by madhu srikantha


Overstepping our bounds 32 opinion

How should the U.S. approach the Libya conflict? The WSS investigates


he question of whether the U.S. should have intervened in Libya is really a question of whether we as Americans value innocent civilian lives. Because after all the analogies to Afghanistan and Iraq, after all the comparisons to whatever intervention the U.S. may have orchestrated in the past, after all the political cartoons or conspiracy theories depicting the good ol’ red, white and blue as some sort of hegemonic evil empire, determined to spread its influence throughout the world, the fact is that a limited intervention in the Libyan conflict in the form of a no-fly zone has prevented a terrible massacre. And Obama said it best on March 28, “In this particular country -– Libya -- at this particular moment, we were faced with the prospect of violence on a horrific scale. We had a unique ability to stop that violence: an international mandate …, the support

of Arab countries, and a plea for help from the Libyan people themselves. We also had the ability to stop Qaddafi’s forces in their tracks without putting American troops on the ground.” Of course, being in Iowa City and not in Benghazi, it’s difficult to present a definitive assessment of the no-fly zone, but as an informed member of the public, there are some things we can say for sure. First, a bloodbath was most definitely prevented. With Gaddafi’s forces armed with aircrafts and tanks as well as receiving assistance from mercenaries and the rebels using little but personal weapons or even improvised devices, it’s a pretty simple question as to which side has the lead in terms of hard power alone. Second, you have to evaluate intervention in Libya in a vacuum. This isn’t Darfur. Or Afghanistan. Or Syria. Or Somalia. There’s no reason a limited use of air power in Lib-

ya is the same thing as a ground invasion in Iraq. Don’t be ridiculous. If it’s determined that saving innocent lives in Libya is possible, plausible, and in U.S. interest in Libya, then it’s a good idea to do so. Period. Third, the Libyans actually want us there (that’s new for the United States). With the rebels calling for U.S. action and a Libyan child holding up a sign saying “Mama Clinton, please stop the bleeding,” it’s pretty clear that the U.S. needs to take its big box of band-aids and put one on Benghazi. So there you go. We have an oil-rich, autocratically controlled nation called Libya in the middle of a civil war between an evil dictator armed with tanks and aircrafts and rebels seeking national democracy but armed with plastic forks. And that’s why “Operation Unifed Protector” is a good idea. Not only for its cool name.

Protecting our rights I

t’s not the New York Times. It’s not the Wall Street Journal. But for the first time, probably ever, Overland High School’s student newspaper, The Overland Scout, made national news. Coastto-coast media and community supporters banded together to push back against censorship and protect the tangible reality of our theoretical entitlement to freedom of the press, even if that press is just high school students. It all started when Lori Schafer, a reporter for The Overland Scout wrote an article mourning the death of her classmate, Leibert Phillips, citing cause of death as complications from a blood clot formed from a wrestling injury that Phillips’ parents claimed they were not notified of. The Colorado principal, Leon Lundie, questioned the accuracy of the description of Phillips’ fatal injury cited in the article, claiming that the piece (meant as a memorial, remember) conveyed an unbalanced message. Lundie claimed that Phillips’ parents had been called about the incident, but when the ideas asked to see proof in the phone records, Lundie refused, claiming privacy under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. Then Lundie really pulled out the policy, using his newly christened powers of prior review to halt publication of the paper for the rest of the year, suspend it for future years (moving to an online-only publication) and remove the journalism adviser from her position.


This is especially concerning considering Colorado is one of just seven states, including Iowa, that extends protection for the freedom of student journalists beyond the national standard established in the Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier, which upholds censorship when there is reasonable educational justification. The Colorado Student Free Expression Law affirms the monumental decision in an earlier case, Tinker v. Des Moines, that schools are a public forum for valuable ideas and that neither students nor teachers “shed their constitutional rights to freedom of expression or speech at the schoolhouse gate.”The Colorado law explicitly bans administrative censorship except when content is obscene, libelous, or false about a private citizen. Schafer’s article was clearly none of the above. Censorship of this article is not only a violation of the Colorado Student Free Expression Law and the Constitution that protects all citizens, it curbs the ability of all student journalists to pursue honest and controversial reporting even when it is unpopular. Free expression is the foundation of a free people, and distributors of information are not defined by their age or qualifications. It’s no surprise that the West Side Story supports the freedom of student journalists and even less shocking that free speech organizations like the Student Press Law Center and the American Civil Liberties Union backed the Scout’s cause. But what is truly amaz-

ing is that it wasn’t just journalists and activists that rallied around Schafer, it was an entire community. Over 4,000 people signed an online petition to end the principal’s power of prior review, the Colorado Society of Professional Journalists and 37 other organizations pledged their support for the article and the school board received an influx of letters from concerned citizens voicing their support for The Overland Scout. And it worked. Let me try that again. AND IT WORKED! Lundie reinstated the adviser and publication of the paper for the rest of this school year and agreed to let go of his power of prior review, maintaining that his previous response was misconstrued. Lundie says that suspension of publication was due to budget concerns and that he did not explicitly prohibit publication of Schafer’s article. The students say otherwise, saying there was no misunderstanding and pushing even further for protection of their print publication and their current adviser in the years ahead. Everyone deserves to be heard. Phillips’ grieving family, Schafer’s truthful journalism and the community that rallied around them all have voices, and we as a society are less when we are deaf to them. We, as the West Side Story, are proud that their cries were heard loud and clear, by the principal and by the nation.

The reason we keep on fighting BY ELEANOR MARSHALL


t is too much. It is too much to organize events and organize the clothes in my drawers and organize the jumble of thoughts and tired unthoughts in my brain. It is too much to get up in the morning and try. And it is too little.Why do we do it? We are crazy. We are one tiny dust mite on one single eyelash in the blink of the earth’s eye, not to mention the unfathomable body of the universe. But even Atlas just has to shrug every once in a while. And so what? So what about the enormity of time and space and ourselves and beyond ourselves and our to-do lists and to-don’t lists and to-dream lists? So what about the greatness we haven’t achieved and the goodness we didn’t feel up to because we were sweating the big stuff? So what if we are crazy? Because we are crazy like Alexander Fleming who discovered mold is the world’s best antibiotic. We are crazy like Vincent van Gogh who cut off his own ear and saved it while capturing the mystic of the night

better than the night itself. And we are crazy like my cousin who announced that she likes being late to kindergarten so that she can walk in front of the entire class and they can compliment her dresses. Who doesn’t? I am beaming just to think I am in a category with people like that. So what if I am also in a category with compulsive facebook checkers and tone deaf singers and blurter outers? Because what I really am is something. And think of all the categories that’s in. It can be something special, or something else, or something not nothing. And so we are. And so. And so it is another day and my alarm clock makes wave noises and I almost wish I were on an island, but on second thought I’m glad I am here. And I’m glad that snow was falling this morning for one of the last times until winter because it punctuates the blooms with another kind of bounty and reminds us to notice the seasons. I have an independent study first period and I walk to school and independently study the way cold air makes my whole self expand and the smell of coffee and the clunky gracefulness of the morning traffic and its groggy drivers. Hooray for all of us who are stupid enough and brilliant enough to put up with our lousy excuses for selves make something of today. Hooray for the stately front lawn that makes me feel like running like the wind across it. Hooray for not caring about the slow walker in front of me because she is wearing fabulous purple boots and hooray for wearing a yellow scarf

33 opinion

that Mrs. Shullaw tells me is diaphanous and makes me feel like an angel. Hooray for locker signs and the writing on the bathroom stall that tells me that I’m worth it. Hooray for bake sales and being late and other small acts of defiance. Hooray for learning and thinking. Hooray for having a place to be and a challenge to meet and people that expect you to be better than you are. Hooray for doing what we are supposed to do. Bell rings. Enough. Exhale. And then, in that irritating subconscious way we have, inhale. Start again. Why do we do it? At the dinner table my dad asks What’s one good thing that happened today? He never asks about the 20 things I forgot or the 10 people that annoyed me or the three times I got so frustrated my head hurt. And even if he doesn’t listen to the answer because he’s playing on his Droid and even if my mom interrupts half way through with her own story, I always think of one thing. Pause, then play. Back to work. Why do we do it? Why do we care about stupid things like grades and texts and being busy? I don’t know. Because we are meant to. Because we are so full of caring that what and else would we do with it and because it is too scary to think about what is left if you take away all the unimportant stuff and because it matters.

This column is stereotypical S


tereotype. Broken up it’s just “stereo” and “type” like I’m just shopping in an electronics store. And let’s say that I want to buy a stereo, but I don’t know much about brands, so I decide to choose a Sony stereo. However, I realize that my new stereo has high treble and low bass. I conclude that all Sony stereos have high treble and low bass and that no matter how many new stereo types Sony comes out with, they all will have the same problem. Every time I show up I want to try a different brand (or “type”) of stereo, even though newer models of the old stereo brands are coming out. Pretty soon, I’ll run out of “stereo types.”

I refuse to give any brand a second chance because I’ve decided that every stereo that Sony, for example, will ever produce will always have high treble and low bass. That’s what stereotyping is, making an assumption about a group of people based on the actions or appearance of some of that group. How far do we let stereotypes go? And how much do we let these preconceived notions shape how we see people? I’m thinking more than we should. Stereotypes are getting out of control. Remember geometry? “If p then q” does not assert “if q then p.” Every Gothic kid likes black clothes, but not everyone who likes black clothes is Gothic. People use arguments like that every day. And when they’re called out on it they have some shaky excuse like “Well... That’s just what I’ve seen.” We have become unwilling to change our opinions of people once they are set. I’ve had long hair for 15 years of my life. And all kinds of names have been thrown my way. Kids seem to think having long hair is only

for girls. I thought that had been revolutionized in the 60’s. Apparently not. Eventually you get so used to it that it doesn’t bother you so much, but should you have to? Is that really how we should treat our fellow students? It seems that calling them names and generalizing things about them based on the way they look or their favorite activities has become the best way to judge them. Suddenly everyone who wears black is a goth emo cutter who sits in the back of the class writing suicide notes. Maybe that’s a little extreme, but who knows what someone else thinks about you based on their own preconceived beliefs. The next time you see a group of people and your mind races toward stereotypes, go ask them what they’re in to, learn about them. You might find out something completely different than those notions you had originally. As they say, the newer model can be revolutionary.


Gaining some Michael, I’ll miss you perspective 34 opinion





hat does it really mean to look at the big picture? I think it means sacrificing what you want now and looking at what you could have. I think it means using your head. I think it means bottling your ambitions for a little while longer. I think it means willingly choosing unhappiness for the time being. I think it means feeling like you’re going to be unhappy forever for the time being. I don’t know if thinking about the big picture is really worth it. So many decisions that I will make and need to make essentially boil down to one conflict – whether or not it’s justifiable to choose the thing that will make me happy now. And sometimes (ok, most times) it’s difficult for me to see and acknowledge the fact, that there is no way I’m going to know if I’m making the right decision before I make it. Sure, there are indicators – the law for starters (penalties for committing murder and theft are sure ways to keep people from making wrong choices), the suggestions of the ones I love, precedent – but ultimately it’s personal. Something you do for you. Even after asking people what to do, what to say, where to go, how to go, who to talk to, how to talk, I still don’t know. All I have are strong ideas and weak ideas with a nagging feeling that my correct path lies just out of reach in some other realm. It’s so amazingly FRUSTRATING that I’ll never know if there is some alternative that I haven’t/don’t/won’t consider. It’s probably why I can’t make decisions. Why when I’m faced with reality of my options I choose the alternate – the one thing that is a sure impossibility. It’s why the truly unknown – the kind that I’ll never have to actually explore – is appealing and the other kind of unknown – the kind that I’ll eventually have to face but just haven’t yet – is terrifying. I don’t think it’ll ever come easy to me. I think I’ll always recognize that I’m facing the possibility of ruining my own life every time I make a decision. Although this sounds startlingly abysmal, I don’t actually think it is. I think that this just means that from here on I won’t be able to avoid taking responsibility when I make a decision and it goes awry. I think it means knowing I’m going to make mistakes and that I will (in the most cliché manner possible) learn from them. 34

ike most high schoolers, I spend much more time watching TV than I really should. Although I always use TV to procrastinate, Thursdays have for years been an especially sacred part of my week. This, of course, is because Thursday evenings have long been home to the most consistently funny show on television (although Community has recently given it a run for its money): The Office. Now, for those of you who have never seen this show, I have one request: stop reading this now. Put down this paper and get up from wherever you are (if you’re in class, don’t worry.Your teacher will understand). Go out and buy the first three seasons of The Office (the American version, of course). Now go watch them all. Then, pick this back up and continue reading. Okay. Everybody on board? Great. Now, as I’m sure most of you know, Steve Carell, the star of the show, is leaving. Last night was his final episode of The Office, and, although I am writing this before this episode will have actually aired, I’m sure it was an incredibly sad moment for all fans of The Office. While the character may have been based on Ricky Gervais’ boss from the British version of the show, Carell was the first one to perfect the excruciating I-can’t-believe-this-is-happening style of humor that has made Michael Scott a household name. It would be impossible to single out any one moment or line as Michael Scott’s finest. Every time I think I have one pinned down, I remember something even better. Sure, he recently almost burned Dunder Mifflin down while proposing to his girlfriend, but that wasn’t even his best moment this season (that distinction belongs to his performance in Threat Level Midnight). This is the character that made “That’s what she said!” a cultural phenomenon, and yet, the fact that he never became a one joke gimmick is perhaps the greatest testament to Carell’s performance on the show. Now, since Carrel’s departure was announced, there has been infinite debate about his replacement. Will Ferrell has already debuted as Deangelo Vickers, Michael’s temporary replacement, but the show is still in search of a long-term solution. I have thought about this long and hard (That’s what she said!), and, after much debate, have determined that there is only one suitable replacement for this giant of television: SNL and Arrested Development co-star Will Arnett. Now, if anybody reading this has not yet seen Arrested Development, please redirect yourself to paragraph two. Replace the first three seasons of The Office with the first (and only) three seasons of Arrested Development, and repeat. You will not be sorry. As G.O.B. Bluth, Jason Bateman’s magician brother, Arnett stole literally every scene he appeared in. Like Carell, Arnett has the rare ability to take an inherently unlikeable character and make him a fan favorite. Take an especially close look at AD’s second season, and notice the striking similarities between G.O.B. and Michael Scott. Both are desperate for the affections of others and attempt to use the executive powers of their jobs to heal their insecurities. G.O.B. was basically Michael Scott before the American Michael Scott even existed. Like Michael Scott, Arnett has the rare ability to say completely ridiculous things in a way that makes them make perfect sense (I still have not come up with a context in which the line “Michael, I’m an ideas man. I think I proved that with F**K Island!” is not hilarious). Will Arnett would be perfect. NBC, make this happen. Of course, no matter who gets the job, nobody will ever completely replace Michael Scott. The impact that this character had on not only me, but everyone who watches the show was profound. As Michael himself said, “it simply cannot be put into words. It’s incalculable.”

LEFT: In the third grade, my family moved to a condo in Iowa City, where I attended Grant Wood Elementary and traveled the city by bus with my mother every weekend.

ABOVE: This is where my story starts. I spent half a decade of my childhood in a quiet house in Muscatine, rooms thick with orange sunrises and the smell of old books.

The Journey Here: A Scramble of Memories PHOTO ESSAY BY LEELA SATHYAPUTRI wss intern


ABOVE: I’ve gone to seven schools in all—eight including West High. I like to look back on all the precious memories, remembering who I am, how I got here. I still carry the weight of the small child I once was with me everywhere, and I have to say; it’s at West High that that memory feels most free.

emories make me who I am. Curiously, I remember the ones from when I was very young the most. I was lonely when my parents were busy, happy when I played with my best friend, a boy who lived in my apartment complex. The smell of hot tea with milk and cardimum still reminds me of him, just like how the feel of rainsoaked wind under cloud-cover carries the memory of my mother holding

me, hand large enough to cover two of mine. These things stay with me. If West High tends to constantly trigger these memories, well. I’m not saying anything. ~ Special thanks to Caitlin and Nathaniel Wibowo, who modeled as a younger me and my best friend, and their parents: Sarah and Rio.

BELOW: Over the years I’ve attended many schools, and as a result did not have many lasting friendships. I did, however, have one best friend who lived in my neighborhood, and he stayed with me for two years—just us, playing every day, as if removed from the world; and we were happy.

ABOVE: I am an only child. As a result, I was frequently left alone while my parents socialized, dreaming about people, stories and the curious bugs on the wall. Here I learned to be happy appreciating silence.

s n o m r e S s ’ n Herma

West High’s AP Biology teacher Doug Herman is known for his passionate lectures. His ‘Hermanisms’ have become part of our Trojan g over e’re not goin “W vocabulary. Even when the lessons get tough, Mr. Herman encouruse I’m is stuff ‘ca h t ages his students to keep on rolling. ood lookin’, so doggone g compiled by elizabeth dagle through e’re going w “This isn’t underwater basket need to it ‘cause you weaving, folks. This is AP know it!”


“You could pu t that knowledge in a t himble and it wouldn’t over flow.”

ee a fat “You never s ” hawk, do ya?


in’ and groov “They’re mov nd bakin’.” in’, shakin’ a

“The best th ing about being a science teacher is I know a millio n ways to k ill you and you would never know.”

“There’s no such thing as a free lun ch!”

“You don’t w ake up ever y morning and say ‘Well, I’d better start my heart and get my lungs going!’”

energy] [About free

know that? I o d ow “H e not dead!” ’r ou y e s u a ‘C

“I have been in places tha t would scare the bejezus outta you!”


April 22, 2011 issue of the West Side Story

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