Malden’s ‘Dirty Little Secret’ on pg 8

Guest caligrapher; more on pg 6

MHS Swim Team on pg 16

The Blue and Gold

Wrestling captain Craig pg 13

Malden High School Volume 94 Edition 4

Our 94th Year January 2009

Boys Basketball On Top

Washington celebrates Obama’s arrival
Nidale Zouhir Copy Editor


Members of the boys’ basketball team shooting hoops. Emily Chiavelli Head Photographer Undefeated until January 16th and holding aspirations to stay that way for the rest of the season, the Malden High School boys’ basketball team lost a home game against Everett High School. The opposing team won the tip off as Malden’s star center, Egi

Photo by N. Dhruv

Design by L. Tran

Gjikondi, sat on the sidelines. The teams were neck in neck for all four quarters, but MHS eventually fell behind and the game ended with a score of 58-50, despite a strong staring lineup of senior tri-captains Steven Suida, Marques Armstrong, Travis Nally as well as seniors Patrick Urban and Krist Gjikondi. At six feet eight inches, Egi

Gjikondi is only a sophomore but has already been scouted by several colleges, like Boston University, Notre Dame, and the University of Pennsylvania. They have offered him full scholarships based on his impressive 20.7 point per game scoring average; provided, Egi Gjikondi continued pg 13

Parker’sWorld Page 4

four mhs students named posse scholars
Patti McClenthen Reporter


VERY YEAR the Posse Foundation works to supply full-tuition scholarships to students that may be otherwise overlooked in the process of giving out scholarships. This year four Malden High students have received this scholarship; Cynthia Rodriguez, Melchi Noel, Victor Banor, and Stephanie Tran. The foundation itself, founded by Deborah Bial, has locations in

several places around the nation and aims to give students an opportunity to go to the college of their dreams Posse scholars have proven that they deserve these scholarships, too. 90 percent of students who receive the scholarship graduate college, and are reported to be showing initiative and other leadership qualities when participating on campus. The four MHS students have continued pg 8

VERY FOUR (or eight, if the president gets reelected) years, the United States welcomes a new president to the White House, and every four years, he is sworn in at the inauguration ceremony on January 20. For the most part, 2009 was no different; the US swore in its first African American president. His inauguration has generated responsiveness from everyone from Aretha Franklin to Facebook users. Even before it actually happened, President-elect Barack Obama’s inauguration sparked controversy. In Dec. 2008, he chose California’s Proposition 8 supporter and pro-life advocate Rick Warren to deliver his invocation. Naturally, this outraged many Democrats, gay-rights supporters, and other liberal groups. The decision showed many Obama supporters that he is more conservative than originally thought. However, more moderate Democrats were not as angry. “I’m a big fan of Obama, but I find the choice of Rick Warren odd and not the best idea, nevertheless, I trust Obama and his choices,” MHS sophomore Jeri Scibelli said on the topic. In what is a much less debated (and also slightly ironic) decision, Obama also asked Atlanta civil rights leader Reverend Joseph Lowery to deliver the benediction. Lowery, who is 87 years old, campaigned for Obama in Mississippi, Iowa, and Alabama. He also marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. A vast amount of celebrities supported Obama during his campaign; this showed in his inauguration ceremony as well, which included performances by cellist Yo Yo Ma, the “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin, and Pulitzer-Prize nominated poet Elizabeth Alexander. Alexander will be the fourth inaugural poet in US history, joining Robert Frost, Maya Angelou, and continued pg 10

Malden High School


The Blue and Gold January 2009

The Blue and Gold
77 Salem St. Malden, MA 02148

EDITORS-IN-CHIEF Nicole Dhruv Malisa Saksua MANAGING EDITOR Cynthia Rodriguez HEAD NEWS WRITER David Riemer HEAD ENTERTAINMENT/ OPINION Ashley Ngo HEAD SPORTS WRITER Paul Collins ASSISTANT SPORTS WRITER Alfonse Femino HEAD COPY EDITORS Tzivia Halperin Ayoub Kourikchi COPY EDITORS An Holmqvist Brittany Foley Nidale Zouhir HEAD OF PHOTOGRAPHER Emily Chiavelli ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHER Lynn Tran HEAD OF BUSINESS Kimberly Lombard BUSINESS TEAM Brandon Knight Cera Nolan ONLINE EDITORS Kimberly Lombard Brandon Knight REPORTERS Haley DeFilippis Michael DiGregorio Jacquelyn Dillon Alexander Gennigiorgis Dan Holmqvist Shannon Howe Barbara Jerome-Athis Omar Khoshafa Erica Marangos Alexandra Mathieu Patti McClenthen Brittany McFeeley Paul McWhinnie Joan Morabito Linda Nguyen Paula Suarez Salamanca ADVISOR Ryan Gallagher Established in 1915 Check out our online edition:

I have been warned about this ever since freshman year; about the one “-itis” that somehow makes its way to all high school seniors at some point before they graduate: the horror known as senioritis. We’re barely in the third quarter and I am already kneedeep in this illness. One day when conversing with a friend, she told me “You definitely have all the symptoms: laziness, carelessness in attire, major procrastination, repeated absences, and you’re somewhat indifferent.” When I went to deny this accusation, I found I honestly could not argue with her; she was completely right. I have no clue how I caught it, so I decided to do some investigating. To start, I brought up this subject with my senior peers. My research shows that senioritis literally spreading like a wildfire; it seems as though everyone around me is suffering from the “-itis” too. Speaking to my peers was not enough, so I decided to do an entire analysis on our behaviors, from freshman year to senior year, showing the slowly progressing effects of senioritis. As freshmen my friends and I went into high school eager to learn with the “big kids.” Personally, I went in with a full set of honors courses, ready to take on every club that interested me. The transition from middle school to high school was a startling wakeup call, but my friends and I spent late nights determined to finish work. By the end of the year, we got in the routine of sacrificing sleep and free time to do well in everything we took on. As sophomores, we knew the school better. We were more aware and a little more at ease. We were familiar with directions to classes, how students and teachers interact, and the high school environment in general. Classes were tougher, but we learned time management and what to expect for the work we

would have to do in high school classes. As juniors, we were now considered upperclassmen. Because junior year is so critical put a lot of pressure on us; we were now taking on harder courses to prepare us for college. The workload was ridiculous. Time management needed to be reassessed on a whole new level. Teachers saw us as young adults and increased their expectations. Personally, I think in junior year we grew the most, both academically and socially. Between our new workload and our new reputations as young adults, we were growing up. As seniors, we are veterans of the school; we know everything inside and out. We have taken on some of the school’s hardest classes, and formed tight student-teacher relationships throughout our four years. We have made the best friends, experienced some of the toughest moments in our lives, and now we find ourselves as adults on the brink of graduation. The beginning of senior year was stressful with college applications and forms, but once college work was submitted around New Year’s, I noted a major increase in relaxation among my peers. After all of this research, I found my reason for senioritis. We are getting a taste of adulthood by doing things like applying to colleges and filling out financial aid forms. Now that we already applied, we want out of this whole high school scene, so we become lazy with our work. We are too mature for the comfortable high school environment; we are ready for real life, and in the grand scheme of things, our last quarters of high school seem less significant than they used to.

Nicole Dhruv


letter to the editors
Send your letter to the editors to:
Editorial Policy

The Blue and Gold is an open forum for student expression. It is produced by students for the school and the community. The views presented in this paper are not necessarily those of the advisor or the school administration. The views presented in the editorials are those of the editors-in-chief or guests. The goal of The Blue and Gold is to inform and entertain students as well as the community regarding issues that we feel are important. We strongly encourage readers to respond to material printed in the form of signed letters to the editors. No libelous, malicious, defamatory, obscene, or unsigned material will be printed. The Blue and Gold reserves the right to edit the letters. Names may be withheld upon request. Not all letters will be printed. Although The Blue and Gold appreciates the support of advertisers, we may refuse any advertisement that violates the above policy or that promotes products questionable to student use. Any correspondence concerning this publication should be directed to Mr. Ryan Gallagher’s room in C333 or to his mailbox in the main office.

The Blue and Gold c/o Malden High School 77 Salem Street Malden, MA 02148

The Blue and Gold January 2009



Tipping the Scales
Where Have all the Checks and Balances Gotten Us?
David Riemer Head News Writer

iraqi shoe incident
Tzivia Halperin Head Copy Editor

is the secret service doing its job?
and throw it at Bush. Only then did the Secret Service begin piling onto the stage and into the press to tackle Zaidi to the ground. Although the shoes were meant to have cultural significance –showing soles of feet and shoes generally can be taken as an insult in Arabic culture– more than providing the president with severe physical pain, any number of explosives, knives, etc could have been attached to the projectile. Bush was extremely lucky in this situation, however, as we all know, luck is fleeting. At another conference Bush may forget to have a cup of coffee in the morning thus slowing his reflexes. The president should not be expected to do acrobatics to avoid blows; it is the role of the secret service to protect him. So where were they? Jason Hu, a senior at Malden High commented on this deficiency; he noted that “the secret service shouldn’t have let that happen. I thought they were supposed to be by the president’s side at all times.” He went on to say that “the shoe shouldn’t have gotten anywhere near him, let alone two of them.” Only after the shoes were thrown did the Secret Service appear, making moderate effort to subdue Zaidi, which would have proved ineffective if there had been a weapon attached to the shoe. This incident merely highlights the lax attitude of United States security. And with Barack Obama taking office this month, if the Secret Service is incapable of protecting Bush from two projectile shoes, it is difficult to believe they will be able to protect Obama. This is especially true as “law enforcement officials have seen more potentially threatening writings, Internet postings, and other activity directed at Obama than has been seen with any past president-elect,” according to Eileen Sullivan of The Huffington Post. It is imperative then that the secret service and the Secret Service improve organization and efficiency before Obama enters office with this proliferation of threats. Hey guys, if the shoe fits, wear it.



HE ROMAN EMPIRE saw its spectacular rise under the tender care of its famous Republic. For years they thrived, under their essentially democratic political system. Under this system of government, the Romans made certain no one person held power for too long, and that the elected officials would take into consideration the opinions of the people who elected them. However, the emphasis on individual equality among citizens began to wane with the decline in prosperity and the recurrent outbreaks of war. Slowly but surely, prized military generals began to take power from the consulship, finally resulting in Julius Caesar seizing control and the transforming the Republic into an empire. Flash forward nearly 2000 years, and one can find the United States in a similar state of change. The ingenious three-branched organization of the US government, a setup so carefully crafted and so passionately debated throughout the nation’s history, was seemingly well-equipped to handle such prospective switches in power. However, question about just how rigid and restricting those checks and balances actually are have been raised. Under the Bush administration, the U.S. has entered a war and a deep economic recession, over-borrowing and over-spending money the nation simply does not have. Sound familiar? During this time, the executive branch of the government has gained an unprecedented amount of unbalanced authority over the other political sections. Is this merely a

N OUR CONTEMPORARY media, shoes have always been held in high esteem. From Dorothy’s ruby red slippers to Cinderella’s glass slipper to the cast of Sex and the City’s obsession with Manolo Blahniks, shoes remain a symbol of beauty and a source of fascination. However, shoes have taken on increased importance since Dec. 14, 2008 when Iraqi journalist Muntadar al-Zaidi chucked two shoes at President Bush during a surprise conference in Baghdad. Regardless of personal biases, one remains stupefied at the fact that neither shoe was prevented from being thrown at the president, when supposedly security was supposed to have increased. In the middle of the conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki, Zaidi pulled off his shoe and threw it at Bush, shouting “this is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog!” Bush quickly ducked to avoid the blow but the response was so slow that Zaidi was able to pull off his other shoe

The Top 10 List:

Things MHS Students Do During Midterms

[I]n truth, Bush can spend this money however he pleases.
reaction to the stress on the government for waging a war abroad and trying to fix a straggling economy? Or, as some political theorists believe, is it a permanent shift in the fundamental powers which have shaped the nation since its founding? Regardless of the intent of the changes, their effects are widecontinued pg 4

10.) watch tv, because, they can! 9.) go to a friend’s house to study or relax 8.) eat out with friends after each test day 7.) actually take the midterms 6.) discuss how they failed the test they just took 5.) arrive to school later and leave earlier 4.) try not to let the stress get to them 3.) study like crazy to get your grades up 2.) sleep more than four hours a night 1.) party when it’s all over



The Blue and Gold January 2009

buying brand names
Linda Nguyen Reporter

tipping the scales, continued
from page 3


tudies have shown that advertisements play a huge role in the shopping habits of consumers. Due to the economic recession, consumers are paying more attention to price tags than ever. When it comes to brand names, consumers are leaning more towards the smaller, more affordable brands than the larger, more expensive brands.

How is the economy affecting your shopping habits?

spread, and easily seen in the recent auto industry bailout. Government bailouts to private companies such as Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, are supposed to be carried out by the Congress, yet the deal struck this past December was not the one that Congress had approved. Instead of the $14 billion agreed upon by the legislature, the three auto giants were given access to $17.4 billion, a sum much higher than had previously been offered. Who is responsible for this extra-generous donation? Bush authorized the amount himself without Congress approval. “He cannot

“ I would sure love to shop at Gucci and Louis Vuitton, because I want to look good, and it the closest thing I can get to looking like a model, but I’d rather shop at a cheaper place for a better product,” said senior Alinne De Oliveira

“I tend to shop more at indie stores,” senior Grant Klein stated. “I mean, of course, Armani and Prada would be great to wear casually, but I stick to my Urban Outfitters and Johnny Cupcakes. It’s cheaper and more original, and I feel like they are more downto-earth,” he added.

“[T]he power-check...states that only Congress can pass laws, yet Bush has signed over 1,100 provisions for new laws - more than all other presidents in US history combined.”
“I rather shop for a good product from Gap, with a reasonable price,” stated junior Chloe Cheung. do that, can he?” one might ask, but in truth, Bush can spend this money however he pleases. On Oct. 3, 2008, the House of Representatives passed the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act, a key component of which was the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which set aside $700 billion for struggling corporations and banks. However, this enormous purse can be tapped at will by the president, as seen in the auto industry bailout, putting extreme economic power into the hands of the executive branch who can synthesize a reason for a withdrawal on a whim. Bush has fancied himself a lawmaker as well during his eight years as president. At the very heart of the Constitution lies the power-check which states that only Congress can pass laws, yet Bush has signed over 1,100 provisions for new laws more than all other presidents in US history combined. In his presidency marked by war and turmoil, Bush has also issued 276 executive orders, an unusually low amount for such a tumultuous term. As the saying goes, “Desperate times call for desperate measures.” Though the circumstances are severe, putting a crown on one person’s head is not the strategy Americans should be going for. Westerners have had the idea that all problems can be solved by the proper infusion of money and technology; they have tried that already. At this point, the only way to get the country back on track is a change at the individual level–a willingness for cooperation, and just some plain old optimism.

Photos by E. Chiavelli and A. Ngo

parker’s world

Parker Stallworth

The Blue and Gold January 2009

Local news


parker stallworth:
the student behind the cartoons
Parker Stallworth “I can’t remember when I started, but I do remember doing it [drawing] as a sort of way to get money. Then, I started becoming interested in art and I started teaching myself to draw,” stated Parker Stallworth. Barbara Jerome-Athis Reporter


ARKER STALLWORTH, A SENIOR at Malden High School, is affected with high–functioning autism and really talented. “I still act like a ‘normal’ person even though I still have trouble learning and socializing like others,” commented Stallworth. He has been publishing cartoons for The Blue and Gold newspaper since 2007. His classes consist of English, math, art, Mixed Chorus, and gym, but he favors art because it serves as an opportunity to draw at school. He also enjoys his performances in Mixed Chorus, consisting of concerts in or out of school. Stallworth has lived in Malden for all of his life and has a twin sister named Bianca Stallworth, also an MHS senior. “I’m proud of my brother, not only for his efforts in school academics, but also for the progress he has made in his drawings,” said Bianca Stallworth. Besides drawing, he likes to play the guitar and piano, and plays basketball. He looks up to many people like author Rob Serling, film director, producer and screenwriter Tim Burton, animator and cartoon artist Chuck Jones, American writer and cartoonist Dr. Seuss, and American cartoon-

Senior Parker Stallworth in front of his painted mural in room B209. ist and entrepreneur Robert Ripley. He hopes to attend the New England Institute of Art in order to become an animated film maker. Stallworth was blessed with a talent in drawing and is proud of his cartoons being published for all of MHS students to see. He is looking for-

Photo by E. Chiavelli

ward to continuing contributions to The Blue and Gold, as his years in high school come to an end. To conclude, Transition Skills Patricia Laidley said, “Parker is exceptionally creative, well versed, and varies arts form. His art is also well respected by his peers.”

Ice Storms disable power
Brandon Knight Reporter Alexandra Mathieu Reporter


thousands left in the cold. Malden High student affected.
The storms resulted in a state of emergency. The National Grid, an international electricity and gas company, responded quickly to the situation, removing fallen trees and sending out crews of people to help civilians get back up on their feet and repair any damage created. Teddie Teal, father of MHS senior Alex Teal and manager/supervisor of the National Grid, was one of the many to venture out to help families in need. “My dad was gone for two weeks and he missed Christmas,” Teal recalls. Many workers’ schedules were altered during the time of the storm. These schedules kept numerous employees up all night for long periods of time, affecting their health greatly; some became sick and restless because of their lack of sleep. One of the main concerns, besides restoring power to everyone in the areas, was finding a place for those who had electric heaters in their homes. Many people without heat to power their homes were forced to stay in shelters, school gyms, or any place possible in order to keep them sheltered from the cold. Some of those who attempted to stay warm in their homes using gas powered generators died due to carbon monoxide poisoning from the generators; three people died in this manner. Injured and sickly people in the areas were at a higher risk of fatality during the storm. New Hampshire resident Linda Daley stated, “The elderly woman I work for needs a breathalyzer to live. She had no power for 5 days, and she could have died.” The ice storms that ravaged the New England area raise a question: how prepared are you for a massive winter storm? Each winter, snow is expected by all New Englanders, but that does not mean we are all prepared for it. Ice storm damage, such as the ones faced this winter, could be greatly decreased if the right measurements are taken beforehand. For information on how to prepare yourself for a winter storm, and any other natural disaster for that matter, visit and click on “Preparing for Emergencies” for tips and advice.

INTER IS A WORD usually associated with a delicate blanket of snow and warming up in front of a roaring fire, but for most of New England and Upstate New York residents, winter no longer held these whimsical recollections. Ice storms that raged through Massachusetts starting on Dec. 11, 2008, were very destructive, knocking out the power for millions in those areas. The damage, which primarily resulted from fallen trees, utility wires, and poles covered in heavy layers of ice, made the situation worse for those were affected by the ice storms. Almost one million people were powerless at the time of the storm, and at least 170,000 people were left without power for seven to eight days after the storms.

Brittany McFeeley Reporter

Local news

The Blue and Gold January 2009

mhs students learn calligraphy
ding’s mandarin class gets a crash course in calligraphy.


he students smile as they enter Singdye Ding’s wonderful Mandarin class. The students and the teacher have positive attitudes toward each other, making their learning environment enjoyable because of Ding’s colorful and vibrant classroom. Whether the classes are small or large, the students all get along with each other. When the class gets started, they get assigned homework, view the agenda, and observe their objective. The students go over the homework with Ding before the start of their daily lesson. Recently in Ding’s class, Mandarin classes have taken a calligraphy course instructed by Mr. Gao of the Chinese Culture Connection, who invited him to Malden High School to teach the students the art of calligraphy. Calligraphy is highly decorative handwriting, which ranges from old Chinese scripts to a more recent and modernized western calligraphy; it is a very unique form of oriental art. Calligraphy uses Chinese characters to help communicate the spiritual world with a more modern day world. There is always a positive vibe coming for inside her class. The students were very interested in the lesson and other students probably will not get the chance to take this calligraphy course unless they take a Chinese course MHS is offering. The students thought the lesson was great and would definitely want to do it again. “I asked the class and they said yes. It is a real cool thing to do,” stated Mandarin teacher, Ding. The students learned how to hold a paintbrush and practice writing on paper. Mr. Gao then explained the long history of Chinese calligraphy and the different types of fonts and styles to writing calligraphy. The first form of calligraphy developed in the Han Dynasty. However, calligraphy grew to be more serious in the Tang Dynasty. Most of the work from the dynasties in the early B.C era can be found in museums. Out of all the kids who take Mandarin, about two thirds of the students speak Chinese, Mandarin, and other foreign languages. A lot of the students speak Cantonese, which was most likely their first language growing up. Cantonese is also known as Yue, a primary branch of Chinese. Cantonese sounds very different than Mandarin due to different set of syllables. Out of all the Mandarin I and II classes, not many students take the Chinese Advanced Placement exam. In total, there are only 43 students take the Chinese AP exam. Overall, the Mandarin classes enjoyed their lesson about calligraphy and the history that hides behind it.

Mr. Gao helping student Dave Laurore.

Photo by S. Ding

A sample of Mr. Gao’s work.

Mr. Gao helping student.

Photo by S. Ding

The Blue and Gold January 2009

Local news


melrose youth ballet hit hard by weather
Tzivia Halperin Head Copy Editor

nutcracker cancelled due to storm
Warton, who played Mr. Silberhause in the show, commented that “it was a great experience. I have been in a lot of shows before, but none like this one.” In spite of the warm reviews, MYB was still forced to make concessions for the weather, the worst of the news arriving after the cast returned home from the cast party on Sunday. The Board of Directors warned the cast that if schools were cancelled on Monday due to snow, it would be impossible to have the show without Revere’s attendance and therefore the show would be cancelled permanently. In a horrible twist of luck, another snow storm caused the cancellation of the Monday show as well. “Everyone was pretty Dancers practice by going through a dress rehersal. crushed. Six other seniors Photo by Meghan Reid and I got denied our very last performance. That weekend just brings the cast so close together and to have it cut short was a horrible way to end it,” Lombard expressed about her reaction to the cancellation. “I didn’t even get to say goodbye to anyone properly because I thought I would see them all the next day.” Beyond simply the emotional reaction from the cast and crew, the cancellations hit the production’s funds particularly hard. The production, which charges $8 per student, lost at the very least $3,200, Photo by Meghan Reid if taking into consideration only Re- Members of the production pose for a picture. vere’s attendance. The show is very much self-perpetuating: the money gained from ticket sales is used to precarious and doubts circulate that may be forced to close its doors, perfund the next year’s show. With over a show will even be produced for manently. a $3000 deficit, MYB’s position is the 2009 season. After 14 years, MYB


CHRISTMAS SEASON staple, the Melrose Youth Ballet (MYB) production of “The Nutcracker” has always been long anticipated, some even claiming that they “prefer it to the Boston Ballet version.” However, snowstorms have had irrevocable effects on the production, which normally constitutes a Friday morning and evening, a Saturday afternoon and evening, and Sunday afternoon show. After 14 years, MYB was forced to make cancellations, which may yet have repercussions on their 2009 season. The dress rehearsal of the show was held on Thursday Dec. 18, 2008; artistic director Jaclyn Capozzi, and co-president RuthAnn Puppo, huddled the 130 dancers into the auditorium before their scheduled rehearsal for discussion. They informed the dancers, who had begun rehearsing for the show since October, that if schools were cancelled on Friday the 19th because of the snow, they would have to reschedule the Friday morning show until Monday. The dancers were desperate for information that Capozzi and Puppo could not provide. Senior Taylor Lombard, who played Mrs. Silberhause and also performed as a member of the Corps de Ballet, noted that “no one really knew what was going on.” Once the school cancellations were finalized for Friday, they “got final word that the show was being postponed until Monday,” according to Lombard. Although many schools had off for vacation beginning that Monday, Revere’s attendance of 400 students would still be expected –their vacation began later- and therefore the cast still opted to perform Monday morning for Revere. The shows on Saturday and Sunday continued along as scheduled and were deemed a success by cast and audience alike. Junior Sam

construction begins

MHS Bulletin
MHS Class of 2009 presents the Senior Fashion Show Thursday, March 12, 2009, at 6 p.m. Anthony’s of Malden Tickets available sometime mid to late February. For additional info, please see Ms. Vona in the nurses office, or Mr. Fam in C223.
Send events to:

Construction headquarters are set up outside of the Jenkin’s house. Photo by E. Chiavelli

Colby-Sawyer ‘Progressive Scholars’ from left to right: Amanda Rogers, Kristen Tran, Felicia Texiera, and Kristen White. Not pictured: Laura Metellus and Pascale Chataigne. Photo by E. Chiavelli

Local news

The Blue and Gold January 2009

Malden’s dirty little secret
Cera Nolan Reporter


six mhs students nominated for Colby-Sawyer
Shannon Howe Reporter Six seniors have been nominated this year for the Colby- Sawyer Scholarship. Located in New London, New Hampshire, Colby- Sawyer is a small college that focuses on liberal arts. This year and last year, students have been nominated by their guidance councilors and house principles to receive the scholarship which covers tuition. Nominated students have to fill out an application and write a well thought out essay on why they want to attend Colby-Sawyer College. Another important factor is that the students must hold a grade point average of at least 2.8. In past years about 20 students were selected for this award and about 9 wound up interviewing with the school. This year seniors Kristen Tran, Felicia Teixeira, Amanda Rogers, Kristen White, Laura Metellus, and Pascale Chataigne were selected for the scholarship. After being asked how she felt about getting the Colby-Sawyer scholarship Kristen White said, “I am relieved, now I don’t have to worry about getting accepted.” Kristen Tran another senior stated she liked the school because it was small, and in the mountains and very scenic. Even though Tran is undecided on what she wants to persue, she hopes to major in history. When students are chosen they are welcomed by Colby-sawyer College, and they get the chance to go on a tour of the school, and learn what the school has to offer. The application process is not any different from what most high school students have to go through. All they had to do was submit a regular application. This is a great opportunity, especially at a time when the cost of tuition is at an all time high. “I think it’s a fantastic opportunity. It’s a small school and there is a lot of individual attention from faculty, a small campus with lots of opportunity to become involved. And it’s a great chance to live in a different part of New England. It is a whole new experience” said guidance councilor Mrs. Lipinski.

alden, supposedly the best place to raise a family in Massachusetts, has a dirty little secret. It came to the attention of parents and residents when Malden’s Ferryway K-8 public school was named the dirtiest school in Malden. With un-swept floors, eggstained windows, dried food on the walls from the cafeteria, and years of dirt and dust, parents are shaking their heads in shame that their kids are learning under these conditions. Thomas Devito, principal of the Ferryway School, complained that the janitors are not doing their job properly, but it is not his place to tell them what to do. “They do not answer to me. I'm not their supervisor. I'm not their boss,” Devito said during an interview for Channel Five. On the janitor’s defense, the janitor staff at Ferryway complained that they are understaffed and have to put up with broken equipment. “No matter how much mopping you do, you're not going to get the marks up,” stated head custodian, Joe Gibbons, in the same report. Although Gibbons said that they are understaffed, they have an equal amount of custodians as all the other public schools in Malden, who seem to keep their schools kempt. “Working in conditions like these not only lowers morale, but also makes me concerned for the well being of the children,” said K-4 physical education teacher, Colleen Ryan. Ryan explained that she feels badly when the children are doing floor work in P.E. “Floors are dusty, dirty, sticky, and just plain filthy,” continued Ryan. City officials are paying an outside company $5,000 to clean the school. It is upsetting to many that tax money is going towards something that should be done by the custodians. “The bottom line is, it is depressing to come to work in filth, and it’s depressing to see the students studying in filth. This is a new school, there is no excuse for this,” explained technology teacher Earl Fitzpatrick.

POSSE Scholars from top to bottom: Stephanie Tran, Victor Banor, Cynthia Rodriguez, Melchi Noel. Photos by E. Chiavelli

Posse Article continued from page 1
already chosen what Posse partner school they are going to; Rodriguez and Banor are both going to attend Hamilton College in New York, while Noel and Tran are going to Denison College, in Ohio, and Bryn Mawr, in Pennsylvania, respectively. The process of giving out the scholarship happened in three steps. After all of the students were nominated, there was a large group interview, followed by an individual interview and finally, a small group interview that allowed the students to talk to the admissions officers of the colleges of their choice. The ceremony that formally accepted the students into these schools was on January 7, 2009. Guests at the ceremony included the mayor of Boston, Mayor Manino, and Diane Patrick, wife of Governor Deval Patrick. Needless to say, MHS is proud of these students, and wishes them well as they go off to the schools of their dreams.

The Blue and Gold January 2009

World news

Cease-Fire Agreement Set to Heal Palestinian Wounds
Ayoub Kourikchi Head Copy Editor

Madoff Scandal
An Holmqvist Copy Editor

Greed At Its Best: $50 Billion Scandal Rocks the Financial World
ous other establishments in places like Palm Beach, Florida, New York City, London, and Boston. As the Wall St. “wizard” attracted more and more customers, he was able to return money to his former investors in addition to their added interest of ten percent making his scheme even more convincing for future clients. In a congressional hearing conducted on Sunday January 4, 2009 congressmen questioned the Inspector General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), revealing deep and systemic problems at the federal agency. “Many of us have lost confidence in the SEC,” stated Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a New York democrat. The SEC was reportedly informed up to 16 times since 1999 in regards to the Ponzi scheme. Inspector General David Kotz promised to have his report “in a matter of months, not years.” Authorities have encountered many obstacles in putting the money swindler on trial. Weeks after his arrest, Madoff still remained under house arrest to the outrage of his many pained investors. Fraud can land a felon in prison for up to twenty years, but only if the crime can be proved. In the rigorous search for hard evidence, investigators finally uncovered a mail order of $1 million in jewelry that the witty investment manager sent to relatives. In a dazzling twist of irony, Madoff was recently freed on a $10 million bail rejecting the prosecution’s mail charges. The decision proved to be of little comfort to losing investors. “There is a thirst for blood that transcends just those who have been victimized,” said attorney Stephen A. Weiss, adding that some of his several dozen Madoff investors “just want to have this guy’s head.” The cleverly designed scheme seems to have cornered the law, leaving the prosecution with little evidence to support their claim. Magistrate Judge Ronald L. Ellis writes in response, “The government fails to provide sufficient evidence that any potential future dissemination of Madoff’s assets would rise to the level of an economic harm.”


HE DEC. 18TH 2008 edition of The Economist called it the “con of the century.” The New York Times noted it as the “biggest Ponzi scheme in financial history.” When former chairman of the Nasdaq stock exchange and investment manager Bernard Madoff, 70 years old, was arrested on Dec. 11, 2008 for the embezzlement of up to $50 billion in investments, thousands of investors around the globe stopped in their tracks. This enormous scandal has affected a wide range of investors from prominent institutions such as Boston University and Tufts University down to ordinary people. The sheer size of it is quite frankly wholly unimaginable for most people. Put into context, $50 billion is worth one thousand times that of the Malden Public Schools (worth approximately $50 million). Many investors are now completely bereft of their life savings. Among the victims are Holocaust survivor and author of Night Elie Wiesel and filmmaker Steven Spielberg. Prominent French financier René-Thierry Magon de La Villehuchet was found dead in his office on the morning of Dec. 23, 2008 in an apparent suicide. The Frenchman could have lost up to $1.4 billion of his clients’ money. As if the financial crisis in the fall of 2008 were not enough, the Internal Revenue Service reportedly lost up to $17 billion in tax revenues in addition to the $200 billion lost last year. Taxpayers affected by Madoff understandably demanded returns from the IRS because of their lost capital. Many people are wondering how a scheme of such grandeur could have gone completely unnoticed for so many years. As explained by the Boston Globe, “A Ponzi scheme is one in which early investors are paid off with the money of newer clients.” Madoff himself was a trusted and well-respected figure on Wall St. leading many investors to blindly turn over their money to him in hopes that their money would grow. The crafted scheme drew in many investors including celebrities, country clubs, charities, businesses, hedge funds, and numer-


oth Israeli and Palestinian states agreed upon a seemingly tentative cease-fire on Dec. 19, 2008, after a three-week offensive Israeli strike aimed at stopping Hamas from firing rockets into southern Israel, which resulted in more than 1,300 Palestinians deaths and about 5,400 left wounded. Contrastingly, Israel suffered the deaths of 13 of its citizens, 10 of whom were soldiers. Israel has issued a troop pullout that would be complete during the up-coming week; however Hamas, Palestine’s Islamic militant governing body, continues to fire rockets into Israel even after the cease-fire agreement. Both countries’ unilateral decision came days after General Ban Ki-moon, the UN chief visited a United Nations compound in Gaza, and according to, urged both Israeli and Palestinian leaders to achieve political reconciliation after what he said was the “heartbreaking” violence of the last three weeks. The violence has left a massive dent in Palcontinued on pg 10

An example of a ponzi scheme.

Design by A. Holmqvist


World news

The Blue and Gold January 2009

Obama inauguration continued from page 1
Miller Williams. People all over the world looked forward to Obama’s inauguration. Its Facebook event had over 250,000 confirmed guests. These were not all people who were planning to attend the ceremony; as the event’s description explains, “Say ‘Attending’ if you’re looking forward to it, say ‘Not Attending’ if you’re not looking forward to it, and ‘Maybe Attending’ if you don’t care.” In comparison to the vast amount who were “attending,” only about 130,000 invitees were not looking forward to the event. Fewer still, about 50,000, did not care. This further illustrates the obvious popularity that Obama has with the younger generation; his own Facebook page has attracted over three million supporters. The schedule for Obama’s inauguration begun on Jan. 18, 2009, with a welcome event at the Lincoln Memorial. The next day, which also happened to be Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Obama and Vice Presidentelect Joe Biden “[participated] in activities dedicated to serving others in communities across the

Photo from the New York Times Washington, D.C. area,” according to the Presidential Inauguration Committee. In addition, there was a free concert at the Verizon Center in Washington D.C. that evening. Finally, on Jan. 20, 2009, the ceremony took place. During his inaugural address, the new president spoke of the war and the economy. As usual, Obama brought inspiration to everyone from the crowd in Washington, D.C. to celebrities like Ashton Kutcher to MHS students. “I was moved by all the points that he made and all the change that he has promised,” Scibelli continued as she listened to the address. “Today, I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America, they will be met,” President Obama declared, and later finished the address with inspirational and moving words that bring to mind those of Dr. King’s famous “I Have A Dream” speech: “Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations. Thank you. God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.”

estine’s economy after more than 22,000 buildings were destroyed and according to the Palestinian Authority’s Central Bureau of Statistics resulting in a loss of 1.9 billion dollars. Additionally, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency’s facilities states that Gaza’s gross domestic product was slashed by 85 percent and that it could take years for the economy to develop. Furthermore, nearly 80 percent of Gaza’s crops were damaged. During the 22 days of war the International Committee of the Red Cross (IRC) found it difficult to provide the majority of Gaza’s residents, who have directly faced the onslaught of the Israeli attack, with humanitarian aid.

continued from page 9

Pirates in Somalia
Haley Defilippis Reporter

According to, the international Committee of the Red Cross (IRC) said the paramedics found a shocking scene of hundreds of wounded people huddled together in houses among dead bodies, weak after having had no food or water for several days. Although it is not expected that half a century of potent animosity between the Israel and Palestine will be resolved through a cease-fire, it will allow the UN to provide the victims of these attacks with humanitarian aid and international powers to direct them toward political reconciliation.


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ECENTLY, AFRICA has been invaded with modernday pirates along the coast of Somalia. The pirates look for predatory opportunities, and have mastered the art of stealing whole ships. In 2008 alone, the pirates raided over 90 ships, successfully capturing approximately 17. Somalia being lawless, hardly gives citizens the opportunity to live. The pirates explain their mission as pure survival. Somalia appears to be the only country in the world without a government. It’s a dangerous system to live in with no central authority. While driving into the capital, Mogadishu, you pass several different militias where entry fee’s range from $3$300, depending on the goods you’re carrying. However, there is no proof that this money goes to the country’s’ needs to public services, education, roads, housing, and health care. Somali pirates work for one person, which is themselves. Re-

cently, local Islamist groups have been found that may be linked to the pirate gangs, and may have begun to use piracy as a source to buy weapons. To prevent this piracy, the NATO alliance, the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet, along with other volunteer countries, have been patrolling the coasts of Somalia and the Gulf of Aden. The U.S. Navy tracked hostile incidents on the seas near a dozen countries, including attacks by suicide boats near Sri Lanka, an oil tanker seizure off Bangladesh, and attacks on sailboats in Venezuela and Ecuador. The second-fiercest pirate hot spot in the world is Nigeria. Although the majority of Somali pirates are aggressive and fearless when it comes to their business, some are more terrified. On January 13th Kenya Mombasa was busy hijacking a Saudi oil supertanker. The fear of other pirates robbing them, led to the drowning deaths of his men.

The Blue and Gold January 2009



There is no doubt how good DOUBT is
Ashley Ngo Head Entertainment/ Opinion Writer


CCORDING TO A REPORT by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, four percent of all priests who served in the U.S. from 1950 to 2002 faced sexual accusations from minor to major allegations. Although that translates to over four thousand clerics being accused, 30 percent of the cases were dropped because of uncertainty. That “doubt” factor was brought up in John Patrick Shanley’s film version of his Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning play, Doubt. The film is mildly based on Shanley’s personal experiences as a student in a Catholic school and exploits the issue of sexual abuse, religious values, and the conflict between suspicion and doubt. The story is set in 1964 at St. Nicholas School in the Bronx, where Sister Aloysius (Meryl Streep) is the clear discipliner. As the strict nun she is, Aloysius takes delight in her responsibility as the upholder of the church’s traditional ways, disallowing modern technology, such as ballpoint pens, and the singing of commercial songs like “Frosty the Snowman,” which she links with ungodly messages. Along with Aloysius, Sister James (Amy Adams) is also employed by the St. Nicholas school; unlike Aloysius, however, James is a friendly face with an easygoing attitude. The priest, Father Flynn (Philip Seymour Hoffman) is the nearest thing to progressive that the school can get. He welcomes the new ideas and changes set by Pope John XXII, and engages the students in non-traditional practices like playing sports or holding non-religious conversations. Reflecting on adolescent behavior, his homilies revolve around the language of religion, about the positive and negative aspects of doubt, and the wounding consequences of gossip. With a stab at irony, Shanley supplies Flynn with the line, “Doubt can be a bond as powerful and sustaining as certainty. When you are lost, you are not alone.” Aloysius, suspicious of Flynn, appoints James

the role of keeping watch for any curious behavior in him. Her uncertainties are validated when James reveals to her that the school’s only AfricanAmerican student, Donald Miller (Joseph Foster II), come back from a private conference with Flynn upset and smelling of alcohol. She reported that Flynn was later spotted hanging up the boy’s undershirt in his locker. Although there is no hard proof of inappropriate behavior, Aloysius summons the Actors Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman in Doubt. priest to her office, using the Christmas pageant as an excuse. From then on she indicts Flynn point of view on the situation that was never really of wrongdoing, but Flynn demurely laughs it expected. Adams’ interpretation of James’ frustraoff, never taking the accusation seriously. The tion and need for simplicity is perfect from her risdrama becomes more gripping, particularly ing point, breakdown and recovery. when Miller’s mother (Viola Davis) suggests Doubt does not give the audience straightforthat, despite the allegations, the boy is better ward answers to the status of Flynn’s innocence; off in the hands of the priest than in those of instead, it plays the story from Aloysius’s view his bigoted and malicious father. and channels the frustration of being virtually cerThe talented cast involved in Doubt exert tain, but dangerously doubtful. It challenges the all of their skills in their roles. Even though audience to view provocative issues from a more Hoffman and Streep are guilty of overacting expansive perspective, taking on the basic secrecy occasionally, they both give quite remarkable of human behavior. Despite moments where the performances, especially on Hoffman’s part. film goes too far in its development of the plotline, Hoffman’s low-key depiction of Flynn gives Doubt accomplishes its goal of showing how a man the audience the right amount of suspicion can not only be beaten by his actions, but by the perin his actions. Davis, despite her short screen ception others have of him. Lack of evidence can be time, makes an earnest emotional impact on immaterial when manipulation is present, a force the whole story, giving the audience another that can devastate anyone of any power.

VALKYRIE a hit at the box office
Brittany Foley


Copy Editor Claus von Stauffenberg, Cruise fills the role of the protagonist. The movie begins with the Nazis’ promise to Hitler, and then flashes to Stauffenberg, pre-patch, journaling his feelings of the war. The German language morphs into English before the story begins in order to make it easier to follow the complex storyline. After witnessing Stauffenberg’s near-death experience in a series of desert attacks and explosions, an earlier attempt at Germany’s Chancellor is shown. Here, Major-General Henning von Tresckow (Branagh) and General Friedrich Olbricht (Nighy) are introduced to the audience as other inside-assassins. The men meet up after their failed attempt at bombing, and Stauffenberg is pulled back into the picture as he attends a secret gathering of others conspiring against Hitler. The story continues to unravel and more significant characters are introduced. Dr. Carl Goerdeler (Kevin McNally), Witzleben (David Schofield), and Ludwig Beck (Terence Stamp) are others that plan to help with the execution. Stauffenberg ends up being put on top of the group of conspirers after proposing a plan that involves the Reserve Army taking over should anything happen to Hitler. They try to include General Friedrich Fromm (Tom Wilkinson), but he refuses to be involved. However, he refrains from reporting the group. Stauffenberg then takes the plan to Hitler himself, who approves of it, and even praises Stauffenberg because of his injuries. The plan is known as “Operation Valkyrie.“ Although many may have been drawn to the film because of its starstudded cast or the thrillingly sick antagonist and his back-story, it sits comfortably near the top of the box office because of its chilling reality. “Not going to lie, I saw it for the eye-patch,” Everett High sophomore, Justin Schovanec commented about the film. “But I watched it twice after that for the story.” Cruise plays a fantastic Stauffenberg, and surprises viewers with his new mature and wonderfully executed new role. “It definitely beats his Mission Impossible days,” Schovanec expressed. Meanwhile, the audience gets chills from Camber’s Hitler as he horrifies them and brings the psychopathic mass-executioner to life. He expertly captures the essence of the greatest monster man has ever seen throughout the entire movie. “I’m not a big fan of Tom Cruise, but I loved him in this,” Winthrop High School freshman Kayla Aceto stated. “To make it seem like you’re that far gone, you’ve got to be good,” she added. A gripping story of valor, allegiance, and honor, Valkyrie is sure to instill a sense of nationalism in each of its viewers just as successfully as it educates them in how a few died in hopes that the land they loved could live without terror.

N DEC. 25, 2008, the littleknown story of a group of men who took a stand against one of the greatest evils the world has ever seen was brought to life in movie theaters across the country. Directed by Bryan Singer, Valkyrie illustrates the last but strongest attempt to assassinate the infamous Adolf Hitler by a cluster of his Nazi followers. Singer, who is the executive producer of TV drama House M.D., worked alongside writers Christopher McQuarrie and Nathan Alexander to create the film. Valkyrie is based on the actual happenings from World War II, and features acclaimed actors including Tom Cruise, Bill Nighy, and Kenneth Branagh. In the movie, Nazi soldiers that pledged their loyalty to Hitler (David Camber) come together to eliminate him after realizing that they owe their lives to their country, not to the sadistic sociopath that had taken control. As eye-patch-clad Colonel



The Blue and Gold January 2009

Curious about benjamin? Fall Out Boy
comes out audiences are curious about with another brad pitt’s latest film great album E
Brittany McFeeley Reporter VERYONE HAS a story to tell and everyone has moments in his or her lives that shape who they become. Would being born old and growing younger change the outcome of your life? Well, it changed the life of a man by the name of Benjamin Button. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button was based on a novel written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, an American writer who was famous for writing novels and short stories. On its release day, which was Christmas Day, The Curious Case Pitt portrays Benjamin Button as he grows younger with time. of Benjamin Button made $11,871,831. The crew did an amazing job performing out- and Benjamin begins to get younger in physical appearance but older in age. standing roles throughout the movie. At the nursing home he stayed at, he The movie begins with Daisy (Cate Blanchett) as an elderly woman on her death- meets Daisy, a young girl whose grandmother bed listening to her daughter, Caroline (Julia lives at the nursing home. As soon as Benjamin Ormond), read the diary of Benjamin Button lays eyes on her, he falls in love. Daisy could (Brad Pitt) in her final hours before hurricane tell that Benjamin was not like the other elderKatrina makes landfall. The diary reveals the ly people in the nursing home; they seemed to click and immediately became close friends. unusual circumstances of Button’s life. Devastated from the death of his son Her grandmother did not want Daisy sneakin World War I, a blind clockmaker creates a ing around at night with what seemed to be unique clock that works backwards, hoping to a 78 year-old man. After her grandmother’s bring back his son. The clock is displayed in death, Daisy visited less often but when she Grand Central Station for all to see, including did it was only to see Benjamin. When Benjamin was going through puPresident Theodore Roosevelt. After revealing his clock that worked backwards, he sets into berty, he joined a sailor’s crew. They stopped motion the circumstances of Benjamin’s birth. at a hotel where he fell in love with another It triggered Benjamin to be born as an old man woman. Benjamin was about 20 when they with the same wrinkled crippled body, as an started having an affair. He wrote to Daisy that he had fallen in love and she was crushed. 85 year-old man would have. Benjamin’s mother passed away shortly Daisy then becomes a famous ballet dancer. after he was born due to complications during Benjamin surprises her by attending one of childbirth. His father, Thomas Button (Jason her productions but his heart is crushed when Flemyng) blamed Benjamin for his wife’s he realizes that Daisy has been dating another death, so he left him on the stairs of a nurs- guy. Soon, Daisy and Benjamin fall back in ing home with 18 dollars tucked in the blanket love after Benjamin refuses to stop loving her. This movie is a great hit and everyone Benjamin was wrapped in. Queenie (Taraji P. Henson) and Tizzy (Mahershalalhasbaz Ali) should get the chance to watch this amazing find Benjamin by accidentally stepping on the love story of The Curious Case of Benjamin Butpoor child. Queenie immediately takes him in ton. Nidale Zouhir Copy Editor


ESPITE THE TEEN angst and hatred of fame that dominated previous Fall Out Boy records, Folie à Deux (FAD), their fifth full length album, is heavily politically charged, complete with a fervent hope for change and even an insult or two directed at former President George W. Bush. FOB has obviously evolved since their Evening Out With Your Girlfriend days; they have gone from mentioning indie icon John Cusak to writing an entire song about soul artist Roberta Flack and the man described as the love of her life, Donny Hathaway. The song is called, “What a Catch, Donnie,” and features collaborations from Elvis Costello, Travis McCoy of Gym Class Heroes, William Beckett of The Academy Is..., Brendon Urie of Panic at the Disco, and other vocalists, mostly from Peter Wentz’s record label, Decaydance. This is not the only song featuring Urie -- the political metaphors of “20 Dollar Nosebleed” are accentuated with his vocals. As with 2007’s Infinity on High (IOH), FOB chooses one of the year’s most successful rappers to make a guest appearance: the song “Tiffany Blews” features a surprisingly honest verse from Lil Wayne. As usual, bassist-lyricist Pete Wentz writes self-indulgently (and, at times, narcissistically, as in the album’s first single, “I Don’t Care,” whose chorus proudly proclaims, “I don’t care what you think, as long as it’s about me”). However, to 14 year-old girls all over the world, his lyrics are as relatable as a mass-produced buddy icon. Similar to earlier albums, Wentz’s lyrics are contradictory; “She’s My Winona” claims that he is “never the same person when [he goes] to sleep as when [he wakes] up.” Meanwhile, 2007’s IOH almost angrily stated that “seasons change but people don’t.” He also spends an ample amount of time telling FOB’s listeners that the world does not care about their problems while whining about his own. Musically, FAD sounds more epic than FOB’s previous records. With pianos (a relatively new sound for the band) and falsettos (which fans of vocalist/rhythm guitarist Patrick Stump are used to), FAD is definitely their most mature sounding record, despite the occasionally whiny lyrics. The band’s sound is even more polished than it was on Infinity on High. However, like IOH, the record sounds almost overproduced and there are moments where it is difficult to tell the difference between drummer Andy Hurley and a drum machine. Overall, however, even with the slightly over-mixed sound, FAD is an enjoyable album. Memorable tracks include the political anthem “(Coffee’s for Closers)” and the easily-quoted “The (Shipped) Gold Standard.” The album’s political metaphors are more straightforward than usual, which makes for an interesting hour of music; the teen angst that Wentz usually claims to have outgrown is still there; and the hatred of fame that almost every successful band plays music about eventually becomes obvious as it is hypocritical. All in all, it seems like Fall Out Boy has produced another hit record.

The Blue and Gold January 2009



wrestling against the scale
Emily Chiavelli Head of Photography

craig ramsey and the wrestling team fight to stay in their weight class


OR CRAIG RAMSEY, wrestling is a weighting game. “I lost four pounds today; did it in about two or two and a half hours,” claimed Ramsey, who wrestles in the 140 pound weight class, during a recent interview. With a 6-3 record so far this season, Ramsey’s impressive performance has far surpassed the team’s overall record of 0-9. Despite the occasional need to work “extra hard” at practices to lose weight for an upcoming meet, Ramsey claims that maintaining his weight is an overarching factor during the wrestling season. “It’s not about not eating. It’s about regulating what you eat throughout the season. If you don’t eat, you’ll have no energy to wrestle.” Ramsey does not eat much fruit, which is high in sugar, and stays away from dark meat, butter, and fried foods; instead he steams and bakes his food and monitors his calorie intake. “I eat about 600-700 calories a day during wrestling season. Most wrestlers don’t get much more than that,” said Ramsey, who has been wrestling for over ten years. The recommended daily calorie intake for adults is 2,000. Ramsey also credits intense two and a half hour daily practices with his success. The next weight class above 140 pounds is 145 pounds. Why then, if Ramsey routinely has to come back down to 140 from 145 pounds and even above, does he not simply move up a weight class? “It’s all about discipline. When I wrestle at 140 pounds I know I’m in the best condition of my life,” he says. All Malden High Sschool wrestlers have to be examined by a doctor at the beginning of the season to determine what the lowest weight class they can safely wrestle in is. Many of the other

Captain Craig Ramsey with a black eye after a recent match. wrestlers on the team, however, do not experience the same constant struggle with making weight that Ramsey does; in fact, most of the wrestlers compete under weight. Wrestlers are allowed to weigh in at any amount under their weight class requirement, but are not allowed to compete if they are even a tenth of a pound overweight. According to Ramsey, however, this is no indication of the team’s dedication; everyone on the team “works just as hard” as he does. A lot of the wrestlers are only first or second year participants, which explains the team’s disappointing record. If Ramsey’s clear dedication to the wres-

Photo by E. Chiavelli

tling team is not enough indication of his sportsmanlike attitude, when a group of MHS students started taunting the opposing team at a recent basketball game, Ramsey sat in the bleachers shaking his head and exclaimed “We do not boo,” in frustration. At one point during his interview, Ramsey politely excused himself to question a wrestler he spotted in the hallway about his whereabouts at practice that day. “Some days I complain about practice, I don’t want to go. But I always leave saying I’m glad I went,” said Ramsey. So is all this worth it? “Every day.”

Boys Basketball
explained, that he is able to maintain a 2.8 GPA. Born in Albania, the Gjikondis moved to America when Egi was in third grade and Kristi was fifth. Egi Gjikondi started playing basketball at Salemwood Middle School just three years ago, and coaches immediately noticed his and his brother’s talent; he’s now on the staring lineup for the MHS varsity team. Egi Gjikondi admits that his dedication to the sport has sapped up time he used to devote to friends and family; he also doesn’t have much time to watch his favorite professional team, the Boston Celtics. However, at a recent game against Cambridge, when his opponent began harassing him on the court, Gjikondi received a technical foul for elbowing an opponent in the face, which also resulted in a one-game suspension. As it turned out, he served his suspension during the very important Malden-Everett game. Chants of “We want Egi,” could be heard clearly coming from the Malden bleachers throughout the game. “It was frustrating, not being able to

continued from page 1

play,” Gjikondi says, “But we’re getting a reputation for being a good team, and the better our team gets, the more other teams start to talk [to us on the court].” Gjikondi does not attribute the loss entirely to his suspension; Everett High School’s boys’ basketball team is ranked 5th in the state, with one of the highest ranked centers. Egi Gjikondi believes that the team played a good game without him. Self-proclaimed “hardcore super fan” Stephen Coughlin-an MHS junior who was thrown out of the Malden-Everett game for “taunting” the Everett players -chalks up the fighting to the intense atmosphere that basketball creates. “We have a great team, so you can really get into basketball at Malden High,” Coughlin says of the fans’ extreme devotion this season. Coughlin’s enthusiasm is not unfounded, as evidenced by the team’s impressive record. The team hopes to continue their winning streak in order to win the GBL title and move on to the State Championship.

Malden team against Medford.

Photo by N. Dhruv

girls’ basketball
team moves forward despite injury setback


The Blue and Gold January 2009

Paula Suarez Salamanca Reporter

girls’ gymnastics is off to a good start
Lynn Tran Assistant Photographer


HE GIRLS’ basketball team is lead by head coach Joseph Levine, assistant coach and principle Dana Brown, and senior tri-captains Annie Abber, Annie Willcox, and Alyson Macdonald. The team is made up of six seniors, three juniors, one freshman and a majority of sophomores. With the loss of key player and senior captain MacDonald, the girls’ varsity basketball team is working hard to make up for the loss. Their current record is 3-5 and they expect to win more games. On Friday, Jan. 9, 2009 MacDonald tore her Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) for the third time. The ACL is a ligament in the center of the knee joint that works to stabilize the knee from front to back. When the ACL ligament is stretched too far and breaks it makes the blood vessels inside the ligament break too, which fills the knee joint with blood, causing the knee to swell. The swelling prevents most athletes from playing the game. In this case, MacDonald will have to go to physical therapy for about a month, then she will be able to reunite with the team. “I’m sure that the team will pull it together,” MacDonald said with confidence. “Somebody will step up…someone always does,” she continued. MacDonald is sure that the team has a very big chance of winning Greater Boston League even with her on the sideline. With MacDonald out, starting point guard Abber, being one of the star shooters, faces challenges in games because opponents have started to recognize her talented shooting ability. In the past two games, teams have started to double team Abber, making the plays much harder to run. Levine expressed that the team “[has] a great defense holding [their] opponents, but [they] need a stronger offense making the shots.” During practice, the team focuses on shooting techniques and free-throws, enabling more shooting talent to grow, but they also do a lot scrimmaging and cardio running. Levine believes that, “once [they] get [their] shooting down, [they] will have a great basketball team.” Then he added that the captains make a big part of the team. Levine concluded that, “[The captains] are always working hard in practice, and keep the girls motivated.” He says that the captains have a ‘never quit’ attitude and always believe that the team can achieve anything.


ITH THEIR FLIPS, heel drives, vaults, and dismounts, the Malden High school’s gymnastics team is sticking their way to further wins, with their current record of 1-0. Their first win of 115-86 against Medford will hopefully foreshadow their following meets against tough competitors like Cambridge and Tewksbury. Captains include junior Jessica Fox, and seniors Amanda Dipietrantonio and Kethia Mathieu. The captains, and fellow teammate Kristin Cruikshank, who does floor, beam, and vault, see improvements in the team itself, physically and in dedication. Cruikshank believes that the team “could possibly win the Greater Boston League title.” Not only has the team’s performance improved, but this year is also the first year that Junior Varsity girls have been able to perform. In the past, some girls on the team would not be able to compete in meets due to the amount of members versus the allotted slots available. The gymnastics team decided to fight against this injustice. The JV girls work alongside the Varsity girls for two months, but never get to showcase their talent. For the first time, this year, the Junior Varsity girls will be able to compete, due to the three new open slots. Competing in meets allows the gymnasts to display all their hard work in front of a crowd. With three new slots, the JV girls will not go unnoticed.

Captain Kethia Mathieu on the balance beam. Photo and design by L. Tran

The Blue and Gold January 2009


Alfonse Femino Assistant Sports Writer

mhs track team is well prepared for the season

Sophomore Cynthia Attenor sprints in the relay race.

Sophomore Jessica Vo races around the track.

Junior Thanh Nguyen in motion as she prepares to throw the shotput.


hey can be found on the local track, weight room, or running through the streets, but wherever they are, the members of the boys’ and girls’ track team are preparing for a successful indoor track season. Though the team did not experience much success in previous track seasons, this year is sure to be different. Senior track captains Joe Cirnigliaro, Huy Nguyen, and juniors Ariel Hurts and Thanh Nguyen lead the team by acting as positive role models for underclassmen. This season both the boys’ and girls’ track teams have recruited sev-

eral talented freshman that include Haley DeFilippis, Cristina Peters, and Dan Holmqvist, all of whom are a part of the distance team. Although they are only freshmen, they have already attributed to the success of their respective teams. “I just want to score a couple of points and contribute positively to the team,” stated freshman, 600 meter runner, Holmqvist. All of the freshman have stepped up to take on major roles early in the season. “It really feels great being able to make a giant impact,” exclaimed freshman, 1000 meter runner, DeFilippis. With the right mix of talented

Sophomore Cynthia Attenor sprints in the relay race.

underclassmen as well as experienced upperclassmen, and the addition of all-star athlete David Freni the team is looking much stronger than they have in past seasons. The team has shown that they are willing to do what it takes to win by working hard during the crosscountry season, as well as training extremely hard on the track to build stamina or spending countless hours working in the weight room to build strength. The team recently had its first meet on Thursday, Jan. 15, 2009, against Cambridge Ringe & Latin School. Unfortunately the boys’ team suffered a 74-12 loss. However, the girls displayed gritty determination in a nail-biting performance. Having a successful season will not be an easy task for the boys’ and girls’ track teams, with games against tough squads, such as Somerville and rival Medford. Although the teams have come a long way, each member is willing to dedicate countless hours and hard work in hope of being successful. Ultimately, Peters feels that “it is a great challenge because I get to build my endurance and understand what it feels like to put so much effort into something and get such an uplifting reward.”

Freshman Peters and junior Linda Nguyen pace themselves in the 600 meter run.

Junior Xavier Leo racing in the male’s relay race.

Photos by L. Tran



The Blue and Gold January 2009

Bruins are having a good season
Alfonse Femino Assistant Sports Writer During the 2005 season, not much was going right for the Boston Bruins. In January, the team traded captain Joe Thornton to the San Jose Sharks, where he went on to have the best season of his career leading the league in goals. After losing Thornton the team spiraled downward losing a majority of their games and missing the playoffs finishing in 4th place in the Northeastern conference. After the 2005-2006 season the Bruins luck began to change. In the summer of 2006 the team acquired Zdeno Chara from the Ottawa Senators. The veteran Chara soon played a large role, being named captain and

Swim team does it yet again
Hao Luong diving into the pool. Alex Gennigiorgis Reporter Photo by E. Chiavelli


ISTORY IS REPEATING itself for the Malden High School swim team. Last season the MHS swim team was untouchable, according to head coach Paul DeVincentis and senior captains Matt Zunitch and Ramilio Santana. The team is once again undefeated with a 6-0 record. Despite the loss of six star swimmers due to graduation, the MHS swim team still maintains their competativeness this season. Acquiring transfer student Hao Luong has definitely filled the missing gaps. Luong is a sophmore born in Vietnam who formerly went to Oregon for his educational career and is now a huge success to MHS. Luong already made a big name for himself by breaking the 100 meter fly record and the 500 yard freestyle record. He is “one second away from breaking a third record,” DeVincentis stated. Luong has proven himself to all of his teammates who have given him nicknames, such as, “The Great One” or “The Man”. DeVincentis did not hesitate in stating, “I’ve seen and swam with a lot of great swimmers but Hao is about as good as I’ve ever seen.” DeVincentis also stated that, “Hao will definitely be one of the

greats” along side Julie Dempster, who was the greatest swimmer at MHS in 1989. Being in a new school for Luong was difficult for him and said that hard work is the key to gaining success here at MHS. When asked about how he feels about breaking two MHS records, Luong stated that it was “pretty easy” and that he will “break them again at the Greater Boston League Championship”. According to DeVincentis, “the Malden High School swim team is as good as ever and is continuing to improve,” as previous and current records prove. Although Malden maintains a strong line-up of swimmers, the loss of six senior swimmers makes the team apprehinsive of challenging teams including Cambridge, Malden Catholic, and Somerville. On Friday, Jan. 23, 2009, the MHS swim team will be facing Cambridge at home. DeVincentis stated that the meet will be “very competitive” and because of the MHS swim team’s victory over Cambridge; the last time the two sides met, Cambridge will be “prepared and hyped up” so that they can overcome the MHS powerhouse swim team.

Bruins hug each other in celebration of their victory. leading the team the last three seasons. Alongside Chara, many other players have stepped up and took big roles in past seasons as well as this season. One such player is Marc Savard who currently leads the team in points with 13 goals and 36 assists. Also the young Phil Kessel played brilliantly, scoring a team leading 24 goals. All-Star goalie Tim Thomas has been solid in the net for the Bruins with 16 wins and four losses, while back-up goalie Manny Fernandez also played a pivotal rose in the Bruins success with thirteen wins and only three losses. This year, it seems as though the team is untouchable, but in previous seasons, rival Montreal Canadians had no problem in taking the Bruins down a notch. This year the Canadians have not experienced the same success against the Bruins. In 2003, the Canadians knocked the Bruins out of the playoffs in the first round, and again last season in game 7 of a brutal series. Last season the Bruins were unable to beat the Canadians even one time in the regular season going 0-8 in the season series. However, this season the Canadians have not been able to slow the Bruins down as in recent years. The Bruins currently lead the season series with the Canadians 2-0 with a 6-1 stomping in September and a 3-2 shootout win in November. Although the team is sitting comfortably at the top of the tough Northeastern division, and has the second best record in hockey behind the Sharks, they still have much more to accomplish in the second half of the season. On the road ahead for the team lie tough league games against the Canadians, Senators, and Florida Panthers. With the perfect mix of veterans such as Savard, Thomas, and Chara, as well as some talented young players such as 19 year old Milan Lucic, and Phil Kessel, the Stanley Cup may be in the future of the Bruins.

Co-captains Matthew Zunitch and Ramilo Santana pose inside the pool. Photo by E. Chiavelli

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