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Change is prominent issue in local elections

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Ultimate frisbee takes sports to the extreme
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February 2007


Issue IV

Old building, new paint job

The Broward County School Board is spending 293,531 dollars to repaint the entire exterior school building that faces Stirling Road, over the next three months. According to Anthony Valachovic, Assistant Principal, school board policy requires buildings to be painted every seven years. The building has not been painted in eleven years. “The painting has been delayed because of the anticipation of the school being replaced,” Steve Dowling, Broward County School Board project manager, said. “People don’t want to paint something that’s going to be torn down, but it takes time to develop the new plans.” Plans for the phase replacement in order include: building a new cafeteria and an administration building with science labs. “It’s a lengthy process,” Principal Wendy Doll said. “We want to build and move kids in without losing any programs.” According to Dowling, the school has to remain in operation for at least the next three years. The main reason for painting is due to water intrusion issues inspired by the fact that the “school is wearing out.” These water issues made it imperative that the painting would happen. Part of the painting process includes sealing, water proofing, and caulking, which protects the walls from any type of water damage. “They decided to expend the money because it will remedy some things and make the school look more presentable,” Wendy Doll, Principal,

Facebook’s Beacon raises controversy
Facebook’s Beacon application, a program that tracks users’ internet history and uses that information for selling and placing advertisements, has been challenged since its November 6, 2007 launch. Facebook is a social networking site that started as a way for college students to keep in touch, but has become highly popular among high school students as well. The Cooper City high school network has 1,237 members and is growing rapidly. In November 2007, Facebook began selling commercial ads that were displayed next to a person’s profile picture. Forty four companies initially signed on with Facebook to advertise their websites on the Facebook users’ profiles or newsfeeds. The Beacon application monitors Facebook users’ internet history by leaving cookies on their computer. The cookies track which websites a user visits as well as what they do on that site, such as buying movie tickets or planning a vacation, to match ads with them. A major complaint against Beacon was that it was set as the default option, and unless a Facebook user opted out, their information would be published. Also the window to opt out only appeared for a few seconds on the screen and was hard to fine. According to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Beacon is designed to bring in the advertising money, while maintaining the site’s friendly appeal. Rather than pop-up or banner ads, the Facebook ads are small and appear with the profile picture of a Facebook user. Advertisers were quick to jump on board with the program because their ads will be displayed on the pages of people who already visit their sites frequently. This is supposed to maximize the effectiveness of the ad since the friends of the Facebook user might have similar interests. Some of the leading companies partnered with Beacon are eBay, Fandango, Travelocity and Blockbuster. “Beacon offers an interesting new way for us to deliver on our goal of bringing more bidders and buyers to our sellers’ listings,” Gary Briggs, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of eBay North America said in a press Facebook continued on page 3

Michael Worley

CertaPro Painters repaint the front of the schoolʼs older building.

said. “A fresh coat of paint tends to renew pride in school. It also keeps things clean and keeps out water intrusion, rusted out windows, and leaks.” According to Doll, Cooper City High does not have to pay for any of the expenditures because the Broward

County School board takes care of it with their five-year maintenance allotment from the state. The building is being painted during school hours and weekends. “I’d prefer that they don’t do Painting continued on page 2


IOC may leave SGA
service projects. Currently, IOC’s constitution specifies the selection process for its president and recording secretary, which are currently the only two officer positions the club requires. In this process, the first vice president of SGA automatically becomes the president of IOC at the beginning of their term. The SGA recording secretary becomes the IOC recording IOC continued on page 2

IOC, the Inter Organization Counsel at CCHS, proposed the idea of separating itself from the Student Government Association, SGA, and acting as a completely different governing body to club representatives at their meeting on February 4. IOC allows representatives from each school club to communicate and participate in collective

Economic recession prominent
Opinions on the downward spiral of the US economy

Go Grease lightning!

Inside this issue

Michael Worley
Lindsey Kushner and Shannon Garlin sell school shirts for SGA and IOC.

Student cheating
A rising trend in schools

News...............................1-3 Opinions..........................4-5 Entertainment...................6-7 Trend Story......................8-9 Features.......................10-12 Sports..........................14-16

Behind the scenes of the audition





Key club holds canned food drive
officer, said. Key Club tried to create competition between clubs and teams to get the school involved. “We pick groups that have long standing rivalries and are interested in competing,” Shammay said. Match-ups included Student Government Association and National Honor Society, Key Club and Journalism, Jewish Student Union and Bible Club, and CTV and Science Club. According to Shammay, about 4,300 cans were collected. Journalism came out victorious with a total of 1,541 cans and peer counseling came in second with 836 cans. “I was very proud of the students,” Bonnie Lashbrook, Peer Counseling teacher, said. “We wanted to win very badly, but we also wanted to help out the homeless.”


The Lariat
IOC to become its own club
IOC continued from page 1 secretary as well. “Besides the fact that SGA and IOC share officers, they function as completely separate units,” Toni Megna, president of IOC, said. “The only change this will bring is the introduction of the election process to IOC.” All service or special interest clubs, must be members of IOC in order to participate and function at school. According to Linda Snider, the IOC sponsor, if this change is decided upon, officers of individual clubs will be eligible to run for office. “This could take a lot of pressure off of SGA. Many clubs think that these officers approve which projects can happen and deny those that can’t, but it’s actually all up to the principal,” Megna said. “The officers just give an update to the club representatives. We are just the middleman.” Snider, who is also the SGA sponsor, believes that making IOC independent from SGA would compel clubs to both take ownership within the organization and also have a position on the board. “Clubs are not enthusiastic about participating in IOC,” Snider said. “This could be a step towards finally getting them interested.” Each year, IOC brings clubs together to do school-wide community service projects. This year, they will be having a campus clean-up on March 4, in which all clubs will participate in picking up trash around the school. In the spring, they also hope to gather and redo the front entrance shrubbery. Megna still believes that although SGA is the most experienced and qualified to run IOC, other club officers can easily be trained to fulfill the positions. “It really isn’t a hard job to do,” she said. “They should be fine with just a little bit of coaching.” Club representatives were told to discuss this idea with their sponsors and members. In March, they will relay the feedback with the other representatives and determine a final decision. According to Snider, a decision will be made by the end of the year.


Key Club’s Souperbowl of Caring, a canned food collection competition for local food banks, took place from January 28 to February 7. The Souperbowl, sponsored by the Miami Dolphins, collected cans from school clubs and sports teams. Acceptable items included nonperishable foods, like soup and cereal. According to Julie Klitzner, Key Club sponsor, students were eligible to receive one service hour for every five cans that they brought in. In order to determine the winner, the number of cans were tallied and divided by the number of people in each group. The winning group received a pizza and ice cream party. “Our goal is to replenish the local food banks and break our record from last year’s Souperbowl,” Klitzner said. Last year, the Souperbowl of Caring gathered 1,490 cans. “The local food banks can get very depleted after the winter season due to many families needing aid during Christmas, Hanukkah, and other holidays,” Nathan Shammay, Key Club

Michael Worley
Senior Katie Golembieski adds her canned food to the collection. Classes and clubs competed to collect the most cans, which were donated to local food banks in the area.

Online pre-voting gets students involved

Broward County Social Studies students were able to cast their vote the week before the Florida primary for the presidential and local elections using John McCall, American Government teacher and Social Studies department head, was in charge of running the operation. Students voted in the library using the computers, with McCall there to supervise and help anyone who had trouble with the system. “It’s an excellent opportunity for high school students to participate in the election process. Even if the votes don’t count, they are given the chance to

see who is running and how simple in fact voting is,” McCall said. Not only is Kids Voting Broward a way for students to see what it’s like to vote, it also encourages them to register, which now 16 year olds are allowed to do. In 1972, the legal voting age was lowered from 21 to 18, and ever since then the voting rate among 18-24 year olds has drastically declined. 50% of 18-24 year olds voted that year. In the 1996 elections only 32% of the younger age group voted. In 1998 the turnout was below 20%. But these numbers have gone up in the most recent elections, mainly due to the celebrity involvement in the Rock the Vote campaign. In the 2000 election, 36% of 18 to 24 year-olds

KVB is a way to see who the students would vote for, and compare that to whom elegible adults vote for. “Most people vote in connection with what they have heard and learned about,” Dennis Maguere, AP American History teacher, said. The results of this mock election came to be that out of the 61,125 students, about 38% of them who cast their vote using KVB voted for Barack Obama, Senator of Illinois. Hillary Clinton, who had a 35% of the vote, and as for the Republican Party, front runner John McCain only received about 5% of the votes.


Painting affects
Painting continued from page 1 it during school hours,” freshman Lilio Camere said. “When I’m in an outside classroom, I can hear them working and it gets annoying.” According to Doll, the paint is harmless to the students and faculty. “There’s nothing that they’re using that is dangerous,” she said. “We are in communication with the paint company every single day.” During the week of February 4, teachers had to relocate their cars to the side parking lot, while the front of the school was painted. “I don’t want any paint on my car, so I thank the school for looking out for it,” Bonnie Lashbrook, Peer Counseling teacher, said.

students teachers


Website feeds the hungry



BY JEFFY JOSEPH, a website founded by the United Nations World Food Program, is raising money to feed starving children across the world while improving students’ vocabularies. At, people can play a vocabulary game. For every correct answer, 20 grains of rice are distributed by the United Nations World Food Program, to starving people in countries like Bangladesh, Uganda, Cambodia, and Nicaragua. The WFP buys the rice from small-scale farmers in developing countries. This also provides a boost to local economies. The website raises money to buy the rice by utilizing the Internet’s advertising capabilities. Businesses buy advertisements on the website, essentially paying for the rice while at the same time encouraging education and reaping profits from their marketing. Students at Cooper City High have taken advantage of FreeRice’s commitment to education. Kids across the school have been clicking away, donating rice to the struggle against world hunger, while raising their reading levels at the same time. “FreeRice has really improved my gains popularity as people learn new diction and donate food to the poor.

everyday vocabulary,” senior Colleen Murphy said. “Words I don’t use on a regular basis have been popping into my head lately.” Several English teachers have started encouraging students to partake in the FreeRice program. Some offer extra credit for participation, while others inform students of the program and

leave it at their discretion. “I found out about the program in October and since then I’ve offered extra credit for participation,” Suzanne Margolin, English teacher, said. “It’s a great way to motivate students to learn vocabulary while having fun at the same time.” Many students have demonstrated

awareness of the world’s problems and taken their own initiative to fight world hunger through Without any classroom compensation, they’ve started groups to get the word out. “FreeRice encourages everyone to contribute to the betterment of society regardless of their economic situation,” senior Daniel Rodriguez said. “It allows us to do our part in the global war on hunger while at the same time helping ourselves.” Sponsors of FreeRice have proven that advertising on a charitable website can reap profits while at the same time securing a reputation as a business committed to both education and humanitarianism. “The more the public understands businesses care, the more inclined they will be to support the business,” Margolin said. “Philanthropic and global awareness is on the rise.” Companies such as the ones advertising on are paving the way for future business endeavors into world affairs. They are showing that a business can be profitable and ethical at the same time. “It’s fine for businesses to profit,” Margolin said, ‘But proportionately, it should serve the needy significantly more than the corporate interest.”

Michael Worley

Freshmen pick majors

Incoming freshmen are required to declare a “Major Area of Interest” before entering high school. When scheduling their classes for their first year of high school, students met with guidance counselors who helped them select a major based on their career goals and interests. These majors range from Engineering/ Architecture to Performing Arts. “This process was mandated by the State Department of Education last year, so that freshmen could embark on their high school careers with a clear focus in mind,” Ron Ziccardi, ninth grade Guidance Counselor, said. According to Ziccardi, given this opportunity, incoming freshmen can have an educational experience similar to that of a college student. “They are not locked in and may change their Major Area of Interest when they meet with their guidance counselor,” Ann Rocco, Assistant Principal, said. Completing a major entails that students take and pass four major-related courses. Majors offered at the school include Accounting, Finance, Drama, Communications, Fine Arts, AutoTech, Chemistry, Sports Management, Pre-Med, Law, Education, and dozens more. Students can choose elective and academic core classes to enroll in to supplement their majors. “All the majors have a sufficient amount of electives to compliment them,” Ziccardi said. This may benefit students who have an explicit mindset on what they want to study in the future because it narrows down the course selection process to those classes solely related to their major. If a freshman chose to be a Journalism Major, he or she would sign up for classes that compliment that field such as Introduction to Journalism and Mass Media.

“This process helps you keep your head straight and gives you more understanding of what you want to do in the future,” freshman Avi Raz, an Engineering/Architecture major, said. Raz took courses in Drafting this year, and says he plans to take additional Math and Tech Studies courses, to further his study. “I’m glad I took these electives and did well in them,” Raz said. “It reassures me and I know that this major is something that I can definitely pursue in college.” At the end of their eighth grade year, many students still remain undecided on a major. These students prefer a standard high school education that offers a variety of electives to help them choose a major after completing their four years of high school and before going off to college. Raquel Ezrati chose Marine Biology as her Major of Interest, but doesn’t believe she will pursue this subject in the future. “I don’t think many ninth graders know what they want to do, so choosing a major might not be a good idea,” Ezrati said. “I will probably switch to something more of my interest eventually.”

Internet tracking raises controversy
Facebook continued from page 1 release. “In a marketplace where trust and reputation are crucial to success, giving sellers the ability to easily alert their network of friends to an item for sale has the potential to be a powerful tool.” The non-profit civic action site was among the first of many groups to campaign against Beacon and Facebook’s tracking software. By late November, had created a Facebook with over 50,000 members to petition against Beacon. “Websites need money from advertising,” senior Brittany Mullen said. “People already put so much of their personal information online. If they give their consent it should be allowed.” On December 6, 2007 Zuckerberg released a statement apologizing for Facebook’s handling of Beacon and announced that it would be changed to an opt-in program. Users are now notified before each story is displayed on their Facebook and asked if they want to continue to allow this. Facebook is not the first site to track internet users’ surfing history and use that information for marketing. Websites such as Google and Yahoo have been keeping tabs on the searches they process since their inception. Google keeps track of every search sent out on its website and what computer it came from for 18-24 months. This information is used to provide ads that fit the interests of the person viewing the website. The Federal Trade Commission does not regulate ad networks’ privacy policies. A ‘Do Not Track’ list was proposed to the FTC on October 31, 2007. The list would be a registry of computers, similar to the ‘Do Not Call’ list enacted in 2003, in which advertisers would not be allowed to track the internet history of people on the list.

Freshman have to choose majors to select which courses they will take during the year.

Robert Yanks




The Local View
A serious history lesson is in order for some of our darling students. You see, there is a group of kids at school that identify themselves with the confederate flag. They tote their rabble rousing apparel on their clothes, backpacks and cars. While they don’t mean any harm by it, they do plenty. These kids are just like any other clique in school. They are no different than the rockers, band kids, or wanna-be gangsters, and like any other clique, they are easily identified by their style of dress. It goes without saying that many teenage fashion trends are ridiculous. Baggy pants worn around the knees clearly aren’t practical. And while I’m sitting in class praying that I won’t have pit stains when I raise my hand, hoards of teenage girls are walking around with calf-high fur boots like they’re on an arctic excursion. While those trends may be goofy and irrational, they don’t hurt anyone. The confederate flag on the other hand does. If you thought it was just a symbol of southern pride or good ol’ Dixie land, you are not alone. However, I must inform you that it is much, much more. It is a symbol of hatred and disunity. It is a symbol that, except for history books, should not be seen around our school. The flag, also known as the Dixie or Rebel flag, originated in the lowest point of our country’s history. It was the battle flag of the confederate states of America. Let me emphasize that point; it was the symbol of the side that fought a war in order to break away from the union and preserve the institution of slavery. So you can see how the flag might be just a tad bit offensive. You might as well be walking around with a noose hanging from your pocket. But it goes even further than that. This flag is more than just an attack on Blacks, it is an attack on everything our country stands for. It is a direct objection to the bill of rights, the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, the pledge of allegiance and any of those other slightly important documents that kind of, sort of built the foundation for our country. So this problem has a pretty simple solution right? One group of students is doing something that offends another group of students. Clearly the answer is to prohibit them from continuing that offensive action. As disdainful as it might be, it would be futile to ban the flag from school. The confederate flag needs to be banned by society. By this I mean it needs to be taken for what it really is. It needs to be equated with other symbols of hate like the swastika. Our country still fails to see the harm in the confederate flag. The South Carolina state legislature voted to remove the flag from the capitol building’s dome in 2000. Yet, this only resulted in the flag being moved to a monument on the front lawn. Current state law actually prohibits the flag’s removal from the capitol building without further legislation. You might not expect it from a football coach, but in April 2007 Steve Spurrier gave an acceptance speech for a community service award in which he condemned South Carolina displaying the flag at their state capitol building. He went on to say that the South Carolina- Tennessee game was marred “by some clown waving that damn Confederate flag behind the TV set. And it was embarrassing to me and I know embarrassing to our state.” You can’t put it much better than that. Embarrassing. That’s truly what it is. While I may not advocate chewing tobacco, wearing camouflage 8 days a week, or driving a ’98 chevy pickup with monster truck tires, that’s entirely their prerogative. But once a harmless, high school clique becomes notorious for plastering the confederate flag on everything they own, they’ve crossed the line. They’ve now offended not only me, but every American citizen. “One nation under God, indivisible.” That pledge is engrained in our memory. But as long as the confederate flag flies, there cannot be “liberty and justice for all.”

The National View
It was March of 2007 when things started to really change in my life. Not in a religious or spiritual sense, but more about my “time management.” Up to that point my day-to-day schedule would consist of the following: wake up, go to McDonalds and order a #11 with a Coke, go to school, arrive late to my first hour class, come home and sleep for 3-4 hours, wake up in the late afternoon/ early evening, listen to music until strange hours of the night, repeat. My father, it seems, had a problem with this line up. He thought my lazy [expletive deleted] needed a job, not so much as to bring in extra revenue, but more to get me out of the house. For over a month and a half, I searched for a job that met my criteria: do nothing, get paid decently, don’t sweat or be put in a situation that may catalyze sweating such as performing physical labor, and don’t work with food, unless it is at a restaurant that I enjoy and possibly may receive discounts on the food/ tips Surprisingly, few jobs in Cooper City fit into that category. On January 22, 2008, this newspaper officially recognized that our country’s economy has entered into the beginning stage of a “recession.” What is this magical word and why does it matter? For the economic textbook answer, you can visit Mr. Tanner in room 3456, but to save time I’ll summarize: An economic recession occurs when a country’s economy, that has been experiencing economic stimulus and growth, slows down. Many things can cause a recession and make it better/worse; inflation (when the price of things go up at a fast pace) and unemployment are two major examples. During a recession, because items and services become more expensive and people are making less money, fewer people will be buying things such as fast food, DVDs or bass guitars (items that aren’t necessities to live… depending on the person’s point of view). As our country begins to slide into a recession, several things are going to impact high school students everywhere. Part-time jobs will be harder to find. During a recession, very few employers are going to be hiring, especially teenagers who can’t work full time or during the lunch rush. At a place like Stein Mart, or other local clothing retailers, finding a job will be hard because the holiday rush has passed and less people will be out buying expensive clothes they can do without. Little items may become more expensive. Items like fast food, vending machine sodas, clothes, and CDs many become more expensive. Notice how soda prices have gone up twenty five cents over the past few years? That’s an example of inflation affecting the “little things.” The difference is that the price escalation in products in today’s recession may occur much more quickly. Driving will cost more. In a recession, gas prices tend to go up substantially. Mechanics may also charge more to fix your vehicle to compensate for the increased inflation. If Nick the mechanic has to pay two dollars extra for his lunch because of inflation, he’s going to charge you two dollars more for labor on your Toyota Sienna. Just as I had to restructure my life last year, many of us may have to think about doing things differently as well. My morning trips to Mickey D’s may be cut back due to the higher costs in food and gasoline. My first hour teacher, who already isn’t being paid enough, will get doubly irritated; not only is he having to put up with my truancy, he is having to pay more money for the coffee that keeps him awake to notice my truancy. As for my mid-afternoon catnaps – well, they’re on their way out too. Higher costs in energy mean my parents are going to be pumping the air conditioner a lot less, and it’s no fun taking an afternoon nap when you’re sweating through the sheets. Our smartest move is to just bite the bullet and spend our money. If everyone in our country gets scared and starts hoarding their cash, things will get much worse. So go out there and buy that new Abercrombie sweater, get those new shoes and spend all that cash. Our future may depend on it.

Rebecca Bine
Grade 9

Student Forum:

Letters to the editor
always have to go to the bathroom, and Ms. Salmon does not appreciate having to repeat part of the lesson when I get back to the class. One of these incidents occurred a couple weeks ago. As usual, I gave myself a couple minutes to go to the bathroom before class. I got there and they were locked. Fortunately, Ms. Salmon understood how badly I needed to go and she gave me a pass but I was disappointed to discover once I got back to the bathrooms they were still locked. After acknowledging the fact that I couldn’t use the auditorium bathrooms either because of, as Robert stated in his article, “supervision and security reasons.” I had to walk all the way down by the cafeteria to finally reach a girls bathroom that was open. It took me at least ten minutes to find it open and I missed most of the lesson we learned in geometry. It would be much appreciated if this issue can be avoided and if the bathrooms were available for use on my way to class. I’m glad that The Lariat has brought up this problem because I truly think that it affects learning at Cooper City High School.

Thank you so much for writing the antidepressant center spread article last issue. Teenage depression is often something that goes unnoticed by both adults and by other teenagers that don’t suffer from depression. Adults assume that its simply hormones and that we’ll grow out of it and our peers that don’t have depression can’t fully comprehend what its like. But for all of those who have had to deal with depression or anxiety, you know its a debilitating disease that can get in the way of even simple everyday tasks. Whether medication is the answer or not goes on a case by case basis. It might be what one person needs, while another person can be helped by talking with a psychologist or making dietary and lifestyle changes. What is more important is for everyone to know

exactly what depression is and the facts and statistics about the medication that can possibly cure it. It is also essential for everyone to know that there are alternatives to taking pills. Hopefully this article has opened people’s eyes to see the truth about what some students have to go through when dealing with mental disorders.

Library take over

Locked Bathrooms
Grade 10

I completely agreed with the article “Locked restrooms arouse questions” by Robert Yanks. Due to the fact that I am a part of the soccer team at school, I drink at least one large bottle of Zephyrhills water each day. Therefore, I go to the bathroom often, but it is a huge inconvenience when I can’t find a bathroom to go to. Several times on my way to third hour, the bathrooms by the gym are locked. As I said before, I

Submit your 250-word letter to Letters may be edited for brevity and clarity and should pertain to any topic previously printed in the newspaper or issue relevant to Cooper City High School and its students.

A library is a place to read. It is a place to finish homework, look at magazines, complete research, check out novels, and go online. It is not a place to play computer games. While some students strain to concentrate, others talk loudly and shoot digital pistols at imaginary robbers. With computers breaking down and internet connections often lost, its hard for some of us to finish our work even without a bunch of game fanatics clogging all the working screens. If people are working on school assignments, that’s fine. It’s maddening to wait, but at least its fair. But if they are just playing games, huddled together in their little groups, screaming and laughing while others are working just yards away - that is when it becomes unfair. So please, people. Leave the games at home.


February 2008

The Lariat

Gangsta Rappa takes the school by storm

Garret Holeve is celebrity around the halls of CCHS. If someone hasn’t heard of his renowned rapping skills, they are probably living under a rock. His presence illuminates any dull moment and his charm makes the girls go crazy. He is the epitome of liveliness, always bursting with energy, which enhances his dancing and rapping. “I just do what I do,” said Holeve. He walks through the halls with the assurance that no one is superior at spitting a rhyme. “If some one challenges me, I have to take it.” He broke into the rap scene two years ago with his lunchtime freestyles and tricky dance moves. He progressed to stage performances, taking the 2006 variety show by storm, showing off his moves in front of hundreds of newfound admirers. His dream is to become the greatest rapper of all time and it seems as if nothing or no one could ever change that. “Garret loves to rap, and he’s not shy about it,” said Holeve’s longtime friend Adam Nadel. If someone were to inquire about Holeve’s talent, there’s one thing they must know, Holeve makes that apparent,

His other hobbies include watching movies and participating in the Best Buddies program. His favorite movie is Step Up, which he is extremely passionate about.

“If someone challenges me, I have to take it”
“I love the hot dance moves, and all the cuties,” explained Holeve. He even went as far as saying his first album will be titled “Step Up; The Streets” One thing Holeve says he’ll never forget about high school is how much fun he had performing at the 2007/08 Senior Variety Show. His rap performance wowed a crowd of over 600 people. The scene was unforgettable, Garrett the Gangsta Rappa coming through the smoke, with screaming fans all around, one hand in the air, the other gripping the microphone. For Holeve, nothing can eclipse that kind of thrill . “I’ll never forget my homeboys from variety show.”
Michael Worley

Garret the Gangsta Rappa in his coveted b-boy stance.

“My rap name is Gangsta Rappa, and I’m with the TNT Homeboys”. After his performance at this year’s Senior Variety show, Holeve decided that he would invest all his time into creating a successful rap group that would take America by storm. “After school is over, I want to go to New York and make my own company,” said Holeve. The TNT homeboys, Holeve plus Steve Winnett, Andrew Sinkoe,

and Seth Miller, plan to start recording sometime this year. “Garret is a loveable guy, and we’re going to have a lot of fun recording music,” said Miller. When Holeve isn’t rapping, Holeve might be found perfecting his jump shot at the JCC. Holeve refers to Basketball as his escape from the world. “Basketball is my favorite sport, and I score a lot, I like the 3-point shot, but my favorite shot is the dunk.”

Grease lightning strikes

Modeled after the original Broadway musical, Grease is taking the stage of Cooper City High to show the world Rydell High School in the 50’s. “Grease is a great pick to perform because you get a lot of people who are familiar with the story line, but not the full scope of it,” said Adam Crain, who plays a Greaser named Doody. Most people think this performance is going to be a lot like the well-known, well-loved movie, with the action centered around Danny Zukko and Sandy Dumbrowski. However, this musical is going to have a storyline that focuses on the rest of the cast growing up during their senior year. The musical is going to be a mixture of dark-undertones, along with some smart-humor thrown in. The main characters are each in one of the two “gangs”; the Greasers and the Pink Ladies. The Greasers are the leatherjacket wearing bad boys, and the Pink Ladies are the tough chicks of the school who have been friends since they started at Rydell. “The characters in Grease can be compared to those in movie, Mean Girls, in the sense that life as a popular highschool student isn’t always perfect,” said Ms. Thomas, Cooper City High’s drama teacher. The try-outs for Grease were very crowded considering the number of kids that came to audition. “The response from the student body was huge, and it was really cool to have all that attention on the drama

program,” said Adam Crain. The four day process for auditions included singing a song on the first day, learning choreography and being ranked on dance skills the second day, cold readings where students read from the scripts on the third day, and on the fourth day, there was a big dance audition to cast for the ensemble. Students from all grades tried out for this musical, and the cast now consists of 76 people, which is a lot more than previous performances.

“The characters in Grease can be compared to those in the movie Mean Girls”
“Every day we are putting everything together for the show, and even though it’s hectic, these 3 hour sessions are all worthwhile,” said Amanda Barrist who plays Patty Simcox in the show. “It’s a little stressful because it’s such a big cast, but overall it’s been great. I hope the audence wants to get up on stage and dance with them,“ said stage manager Catherine Campos. The casting, set-making, and exhausting practices, all lead up to the premiere of Grease, on March 6th, 7th, and 8th. “A lot of energy is involved in making this musical happen, and the show will allow everybody to be a part of what’s on stage,” said Ms. Thomas. Grease is sure to be another fantastic performance put on by Cooper City High School’s Drama Department.
Left to Right: Richard Forbes, Daniel Maguire, Seth Mahl, Bret Helmes, Aharon Corseri

Michael Worley Michael Worley

The boys of Grease doing line readings during auditions


Hannah Montana excites fans



Lupe Fiasco’s: The Cool



Frustrated, confused, and distressed, sophomore Corrina Dolan trudged away from the computer with a look of devastation upon her face. She had gone into battle with all of the necessary provisions: credit card, fan club membership, even high speed internet to try to beat out the other warriors. Despite her best efforts, she had once again lost a war with Ticketmaster. But how? How could a concert venue with a seating capacity of 21,371 sell out in a matter of minutes? That seems to be the question of the year for Hannah Montana fans all over the country. Frenzied fans are so desperate to land tickets for the teen sensation’s 54-show “Best of Both Worlds” tour that they are willing to pay through the nose. Tickets were originally $26 to $56, but Hannah fanatics were doomed from the start. With special software, ticket brokers scooped up thousands of tickets within minutes of them becoming available online and shut out legitimate Hannah followers. Brokers are now receiving four-to-five times face value, creating a wave of complaints from frustrated parents. StubHub, a popular concert ticket website, asked for $3500 and up for tickets to the November concert. Senior Angelica Dolan found asking prices as high as $20,000, and reluctantly gave up hope of seeing her favorite artist. Thursday, January 31st, was the second time Disney Superstar Miley Cyrus graced South Florida with her presence; her previous concert in November sold out in four minutes flat. Cyrus’ television show Hannah Montana debuted March 24th, 2006 with Cyrus cast as Miley Stewart/Hannah Montana, who lives a double life as a normal 14-year-old girl by day and a famous pop star by night, concealing her secret persona from the public. With its catchy tunes and cheesy jokes it has quickly become hit. The series premiere scored record ratings for the Disney Channel: 5.4 million viewers. The show is also the #1 Disney Channel Original Series to date and is the first Disney Channel Original Series soundtrack to hit #1 on the Billboard Charts. Why is Hannah Montana such an idol? Simple, she’s America’s sweetheart, a perfect role model that parents love their kids to love. Parents are grateful for Cyrus’ squeaky clean

I’ll be the first to tell you that I know next to nothing about Hip Hop and R&B. Ask me about anything The Velvet Underground has ever released, I’m fine with that, but this is just not my forte. So when I first started listening to Lupe Fiasco’s The Cool, I really didn’t know what to expect. Simply put, it blew me away. This isn’t one of those typical rap records full of misogyny and repetitive lyrics. No, this album has a meaning, a message, a story within almost every track. You can learn from this album. For example, “Little Weapon” tells the story of child soldiers in Africa trained to kill at an early age. The song is so vivid, so graphic, it really drives the point home. The rest of the songs are pretty much the same, filled with great beats and hooks, guest stars and, most importantly, great lyrics that can speak to anyone. As cheesy as it sounds, the only way to describe The Cool is that it’s, well… very cool.
Lupe Fiasco at his Coolist.

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

Robert Yanks

Above: Sophomore Kim Briggs is decked out in her Hannah Montana attire. Inset: Senior Laura Fountain lip syncs to a Hannah tune.

image, which her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, makes sure she maintains. He shelters her from the media as much as possible while keeping her in the public eye. While her innocent aura is a plus, young girls appreciate the teen phenomenon for different reasons. The popularity of “Hannah Montana” goes two ways; she’s both the average girl, and what every girl dreams of becoming. “Every girl wants to be a singer, actress and movie star rolled into one,” claimed sophomore Caroline Lashbrook. Her genuine feel is what attracts most fans. “She’s a girl just like me, who knows that nobody is perfect and life really is what you make it,” explained Sophomore Melissa Cohen. The show is ageless, girls ranging from five to seventeen tune in to watch her make mistakes and learn valuable lessons. Although few girls will get to experience “Hannah Montana” live, all of Cyrus’ fans can enjoy the next best thing: a movie of the concert. “Hannah Montana 3D” is a medley of Cyrus’ best performances from her tour. At the

price of $12, fans can throw on a pair of 3D glasses and pretend they were lucky enough to get tickets to the concert. “I bought my tickets the first day they were available, I’m so excited!” exclaimed sophomore Roshelle Wijeratne. The movie came out February 1st, and lines at Muvico were out the door. “It was amazing, I felt like I was really there! The movie deserves 5 stars,” declared sophomore Rachel Kohn. Hannah Montana’s aptly named Best of Both Worlds concert tour is the perfect opportunity for kids and teens across the nation to see two different worlds rolled into one 90-minute show, complete with addictive music, surreal special effects, a fun atmosphere, and free of risqué antics that cause complaints from parents. The only problem is, how can average teens from this world get to experience that second world that seemingly only grants entry to the wealthy. For now, the Disney Channel and kids to whom money is no object are the only visitors able to enter into this elite dual universe.

With his flawless writing techniques, former Seirra Leonian boy soldier Ishmael Beah describes the devastating effects of civil war on his country. From the slums of Seirra Leone to the ironically named capital Freetown, Beah takes the reader from the naive innocence of a child to the devastating corruption of a drafted child soldier forced to fight over diamonds for his government. Words can’t even describe the devastation I felt for Beah throughout the book. He is an eloquently spoken individual, who uses Critically acclaimed book, imagery that will A Long Way Gone. undoubtedly change any reader’s perspective. Diamonds are only for a lifetime, his story will live forever.

There Will Be Blood
BY JUYOUNG LEE Contributing Writer

Indie cinema introduces new music

“You gotta hear this one song, it’ll change your life I swear”. That was Natalie Portman’s character in the cultflick Garden State, talking about a Shins song. And while it may not have literally changed anyone’s life, it did introduce a whole new wave of people to an amazing band they otherwise would not have heard about. Such is the new trend in mainstream cinema, taking relatively unknown bands and launching them to the front of the charts. So called “indie” music is being commercialized, and it’s not such a bad thing. In the case of The Shins, having a few songs prevalent in such a widely known film as Garden State helped boost awareness,

and in turn sales, immensely. Following their inclusion on the soundtrack, the group released an album that entered the Billboard Charts at #2. Previously, the best they could muster was 86th. And this is no coincidence. Many more artists these days take advantage of the huge publicity a movie can garner. For example, the recently released hit movie Juno features a soundtrack chock full of unknown performers. One of these is Kimya Dawson, who sang the majority of the tunes in the flick. The Juno soundtrack sold well, reaching the top spot on iTunes, and thus propelled Dawson into fame. Now, she’s appearing on talk shows like The View, and people everywhere are taking notice. “I had no idea who she was until I saw Juno” says junior Ashley Ferren. “Now I listen to her almost every day.”

While some may look with disdain at “indie” artists who use movies as launching pads to the planets of fame and fortune, labeling them as “sell outs”, this is the really not the case. Why shouldn’t hard working entertainers earn a little for their years of obscurity? As Senior Evan Weinberg puts it, “They deserve to have success, and they should get it any way they can.” Besides, the real winner of Juno isn’t Kimya Dawson, who is now raking it in; rather, it’s that one girl who has fallen in love with a new type of music she’s never considered before, or that one kid who can now seem cool by introducing his friends to some incredible new songs. So perhaps Natalie Portman was right in Garden State. Perhaps hearing that Shins song really did change someone’s life.

“There Will Be Blood” is an epic masterpiece from the modern auteur P.T. Anderson (“Punch Drunk Love”, “Magnolia”) full of lush performances and yearning film scapes. Oil tycoon, Daniel Plainsview (Daniel Day Lewis of Gangs of New York fame), enthralls the viewer in every scene with a vivid ferocity that will haunt you in your dreams. An art house film set in the dawn of the twentiet h c e n t u r y, L e w i s Above is a scene from symbolizes There Will Be Blood. the evil nature of capitalism growing apart from Old America’s religious morals. It is a tale relevant to our demoralized times, beatifully capturing the loss of humanity in the face of wealth through the words and expressions of Lewis. It is a classic for the ages.



The Lariat

An election in a small town is a very curious thing. Unlike national elections, ther It’s fun to campaign for a neighbor or get into discussions with total strangers about a ca that they plan to try and sway their vote. Therefore, gaining support among even the sm Mr. X and Mr. Y and Mrs. Z… so vote or me!” These small town elections are even more exciting to photograph. Whether it’s mother walking into the Rock Creek community center still without a clue about who sh “Community elections are by far the most important in terms of a direct impact on to be a part of and to educate yourself about.” With this in mind and with so much emotion in the air, it was no surprise that th

A supporter of District 4 Candidate Jamie Curran stands across from City Hall on 90th Ave campaigning. Supporters of various candidates came out early Tuesday morning to wave signs, hand out flyers and encourage Cooper City citizens to get out and vote.

District 3 Candidate, Neil De Jesus, speaks at the Embassy Lakes Town Hall Meeting days before the election. These small community debates were quite heated, allowing citizens to ask the hard-and sometimes publicly awkward-questions regarding a number of issues.

Mayor, Debby Eisinger, walks down the street with a campaign sign. Even the mayor herself was heavily campaigning outside of City Hall, underscoring the importance of this election and how serious her competition was.

Construction of the new housing development begins on the corner of Stirling and Pine Island. The development, Monterra, was among the key issues debated before the January 29th Election was the community policy towards Over 1,800 homes will soon be built on what was once the Waldrep Dairy Farm property; creating what some fear will be major overcrowding and traffic for our local schools and streets.


Giving the gift of life

February 2008

The Lariat

As students enter the mini gym they are welcomed by representatives of Key Club and offered a selection of snacks to eat. Once they satisfy their bellies and fill out a questionnaire sheet, they then proceed to the next station. Here, a friendly nurse records their temperature, pulse, and blood pressure, pricks their finger for a blood sample, and then decides whether they meet the standards for the next step. Those that have been approved then reach the last step in which they lay propped up on a long chair with their arm exposed. As the good Samaritans willingly donate a pint of their blood to a good cause, the recipients are more than grateful to receive. One recipient, thirteen-year old Pioneer Middle student Alex Churnetski deals with his own health problems. Once a month, a private nurse comes to his home to set up an IV on his arm. He must sit immobile for eight hours while the infusion from the IV enters his body. At the age of two, Alex was diagnosed with Immune Deficiency. This hinders the body’s ability to fight off infections from viruses, bacteria, and fungi, and can have a large impact on a victim’s daily life. It develops when one or more essential parts of the immune system are missing or not working properly. Without a properly working immune system, the victims become very vulnerable to the slightest amount of germs. “He could get pneumonia from someone sneezing,” senior Heather Green, Alex’s cousin, said. More than likely you’ve seen or heard of the movie The Boy in the Plastic Bubble. The main character of this movie deals with this same disease, and therefore leads a secluded life in a plastic bubble. This bubble protects him from outside common germs that could easily kill him, while they are harmless to the rest of us. Fortunately, the monthly infusion treats this disease and allows life to be livable.

Michael Worley

Sophomore Brock Snider donates for Key Clubʼs blood drive.

A typical infusion used to treat immune deficiency extracts plasma and red blood cells from over 1,000 pints of blood. This large amount of blood is collected from healthy donors and then purified through a special process. This process helps in reducing the frequency or severity of infections. Therefore, in order to stay alive, Alex is very dependent on blood donations. This is where the blood drive comes in. With the help of Key Club, the Community Blood Centers of South Florida have been holding blood drives here at CCHS for the past six years. “High schools are the main sources of our blood donation,” said Area Director Dawn Bossaller. “That’s why it’s so important for us to hold these drives and for the students to participate.” For the September and November blood drives, Alex helped

Key Club organize, promote, and spread awareness not only in our school, but outside, in the community, as well. For his Barmitzvah in October, he chose Immune Deficiency Awareness as his community service project. He even attached notices for the blood drive in his invitations. Alex made himself well known amongst the donors of the blood drive by assisting in any way he could. Attending to the donors with refreshments and food, and having friendly conversations with them were just some of the ways he was able to lend a helping hand. “Alex became the ‘face’ for the blood drive,” said Vice President of Key Club, Heather Green. Donors knew exactly where their blood was going and how they were helping a life. “He’s a perfect example of how crucial blood drives are,” she said.

Alex’s help proved successful as September’s drive proved to have the best results yet. Out of 150 donors, 119 good pints of blood were collected. Alex will continue to depend on blood drives throughout his entire life, which is why Key Club stresses their importance. “Donating could take as little as half an hour and could change a person’s life,” said Green. “I don’t understand why anyone eligible wouldn’t.”

- 153 blood donors participated in the last drive. - 119 pints of blood were donated from Cooper City High in a single day. - Four drives have already been conducted this year and four more are planned.

Students united in divorce

One day after school, a group of kids started an innocent conversation about the fragile topic of divorce. Out of this conversation, senior Steve Winnett’s brainchild “Dealing with Divorce Club” was born. “Instead of talking about [divorce] at home, why not talk about it at school?” said Winnett. With the help of sponsor and family counselor Mrs. McCallif, the idea finally became a reality. Being a child of a three-time divorced parent, Junior Stephanie Berman was thrilled to hear of a club that wasn’t afraid to deal with such a delicate topic. For students like her, divorce is an apparent, everyday reality. “I was always taught not to hang my dirty laundry where everyone could see it,” said Stephanie. “[Dealing

with divorce] club is a great outlet for students like me to finally feel like they can express the effects of divorce in a private setting.” Just like a professional counseling session, the adage “what is said within the group stays within the group” applies. The club provides a confidential setting, where students are free to express themselves with no threat of their personal business leaving the room. “Anonymity, of course, is crucial and the club makes you feel that from the moment you step in, to the moment you walk out,” said Stephanie. One of the most appealing aspects of the club, is that everything is dealt with in a professional manner. CCHS family counselor Mrs. McAuliffe, is the sponsor of the club. She has been trained in the field of psychology and obviously has plenty to offer to the

attendees. “I feel comfortable talking in front of Mrs.McAuliffe because I know she is a professional, plus not everyone could afford a weekly therapy session, so the club is a great alternative,” said Stephanie. Dealing with Divorce has proven to be an important program for the students of Cooper City. “[The importance of the club] is to provide students with an outlet to discuss how they feel amongst peers in similar situations,” said Club founder Steve Winnett. “It seemed [like the club was helping the kids]. After the first meeting everyone seemed to like the club and had positive reactions.” Winnett went into the club wanting more than just recognition. “It’s good to know other people have similar situations, how they deal with it, and that [divorce] is not always a

bad thing,” he said. Overall, the benefits of having a Divorce Club are countless in the eyes of the members. “Divorce isn’t just a one moment thing that happens and then there are no consequences,” said Stephanie. “Students come in every week with a new story about how divorce affected their lives recently and they look forward to entering an environment where everyone’s attention is on them and they can just talk and receive support from people who know exactly what they’re going through. I know I do.” For anyone who is “dealing with divorce,” meetings are held every other Tuesday after school in room 128. Whether you’re having real household problems or maybe just want to talk to other students who understand the hardships of divorce, this could be the perfect outlet to do just that.


Getting the “A” the easy way




You stumble through the parking lot, trying to speed read without tripping over the curb. As you walk down the hallway, students and teachers stop to stare. Your hair is a bird’s nest. The bags under your eyes nearly touch the ground. Nose buried in your AP book, you manage to make it up three flights of stairs and slide into your desk, trying your hardest to get every last piece of information tucked into your over worked brain. As the test begins you survey the room to see who else is having difficulty. It is then that you see some are bending over to get a better view of the tiny notes scribbled on their arm. Others are arched forward to see the cheat sheets under their legs. A few are stretching their necks, managing to get a good glimpse of their neighbor’s answers. It seems as if you are the only one running this race fairly, yet you will be the last one to the finish line. Cheating is, and has always been, a major concern for teachers and administrators alike. Whether it’s the valedictorian copying answers during a quick quiz, or the lazy underachievers who write notes up their wrists, one thing is for sure: its happening. The penalty for cheating at CCHS is an automatic F, detention, and, depending on the teacher, Internal Suspension. With penalties so harsh, isn’t it obvious that cheating isn’t worth the risk? Obviously not. Statistics show that academic cheating among high school students has risen dramatically during the past 50 years. Researchers at the University of Kentucky studied cheating patterns among almost three hundred high school students. Forty percent of the students admitted to cheating. However, adults always seem shocked to learn of cheating, especially when it’s a high-achieving student. Unrealistic demands for academic

Michael Worley

English teacher Ms. Margolin frowns upon cheating in her class.

achievement cause students to crack under pressure. When grades matter most, cheating rises as students begin to use every available means to increase their class ranking. “In the past it was the struggling student who was more likely to cheat, just to get by,” Professor Donald McCabe, Founder of The Center for Academic Integrity, said in an article by the Ad Council. “Today it is the aboveaverage, college-bound students who are cheating. ” The annual 29th Who’s Who Among American High School Students Poll (a poll of 3,123 high-achieving 16 to 18-year olds) showed that 80 percent of the country’s best students cheated at some point or another. Of those, 95 percent said they were not caught. The most alarming statistic however, was that more than half the students said they don’t think cheating is a big deal. Students cheat for understandable reasons; to get high grades and because there simply aren’t enough hours in the

day to do it all. College bound students are expected to be all they can be to beat Ivy League Standards. In order to get in to these upper tier schools students must make the best grades, play the best sports, show the most leadership in clubs, and rack up the greatest amount of community service hours. According to the Higher Education Research Institute’s annual survey, 47 percent of incoming college freshmen in 2003 reported having earned an A average in high school. “Teachers never hear things like, ‘We have too much homework,’” McCabe said. “It’s more of, ‘I’m involved in basketball, I’m involved in the Glee Club and I’m involved in helping the homeless.’ They have tons and tons of activities, and schoolwork is only part of it.” Studetns have to cut back somewhere. Is cheating wrong, against the rules, and just plain immoral? Absolutely. But does it happen? Yes, and for the many students who try to justify their cheating

by blaming it on the extreme pressures they feel, the resulting consequences can be more devastating than simply failing a test. The negative habit of cheating can easily morph into other dishonest behaviors since not getting caught validates the “right to cheat” for many and can quickly spiral out of control. If the habit of cheating continues into a student’s college life, the punishments they face are much more severe than in high school. For example, UF has no tolerance for cheating; if a student is caught, they will face probation and suspension or expulsion. The challenge then becomes how to stop students from cheating. The answer: remove the reasons for cheating, and the root cause for cheating will eventually dissipate. The honor system and all it stands for really can work, if the concept of “reaching your full potential” truly means your potential, and not the potential of someone else.

Dedicated students racing to the finish


Imagine a downhill sledding race consisting of your entire graduating class. The race seems to be fairly up in the air, but after a series of zigs and zags, some pull ahead. This is a lot like the schoolwide valedictorian race. Undeniably, some students are more capable than others, but intelligence is not all that contributes to the utility belts of valedictorians. How students go about achieving this is no mystery, as many teachers recognize the skills it takes to finish at the top of the class. “It takes commitment and drive to succeed,” Herb Slusher, chemistry teacher, said. Bearing in mind that most parents still think of themselves as owners of their children, some of the measures taken by the school’s high-fliers may not be of their own will. In other words, peer pressure may take a backseat to parental pressure. “[My parents] expect the best of me. But on my own, I want to make sure that I don’t make careless errors,” junior Kathryn Radovan said. Radovan,

the projected valedictorian of her class, is known for taking and retaking tests four times before finally handing it in to receive a routine 100 percent. In Kathryn’s case, parents act as mere training wheels, reinforcing the academic stimulus. Her initiative, uncommon to the majority of students, genuinely epitomizes the rift between the achiever, and the overachiever. What also goes into creating an academic all-star is ambition. And so the student must commit to taking the hardest classes out there. “I plan on taking as many AP and BCC classes as I can,” sophomore Brian Yip said. His goal of passing ten AP and BCC classes does, in fact, serve the purpose of not only advancing his rank, but also securing his position at the top. With that said, the school’s current standards for determining valedictorians are not met with undivided agreement. Controversy arises regarding certain policies. “It puts students at a disadvantage,” Slusher said. “Some students have jobs and are unable to take these classes that boost their high school GPA,” he said.

This of course raises a very valid point. “The classes offered in high school should be the only one to affect GPA,” junior Ian Margol said. Teachers also seem to have a problem with how graduation is carried out. At each graduation, after the valedictorian’s graduation speech but before the rest of the class is called up one by one, the students ranked in the top ten are called onto the stage. “I’d rather have the top five or ten percent up there,” Patricia Manly, English teacher said. But teachers aren’t the only ones with a difference of opinion. For some students’ after school customs differ from those of more impassioned contenders. “I hang out with friends, do my homework once in a while and watch ‘Grey’s Anatomy’,” sophomore Kim Briggs said. “I’d much rather make my high school life worthwhile than focus only on school.” Other students, such as sophomore Caroline Lashbrook, question the true significance of valedictorian honors. “Anyone can be valedictorian,” she said. “Those who are, devote their time only to academics, and don’t balance other things.”

Top students are known for their initiative and drive to succeed. But what is truly remarkable about these overachievers is that they are not ‘all talk’. Students like Kathryn Radovan show the power of devotion and ambition at work. Provided that high school is a downhill race, it’s up to the student to decide if they would rather be the Jamaican Bobsledding Team or the avalanche that crushes the competition.

-School districts in Maryland, Minnesota, Washington, Vermont, Colorado, and Florida have discontinued their valedictorian progress, in order to eliminate unhealthy competition -Eight schools in the Chicago school-district had valedictorians who scored below 20 points on the ACT - In many cases, valedictorians and salutatorians are separated by a thousandth of a point in their GPA.


Sweeney Scott: student barber of CCHS
clean cut of the hairline. Currently, he does male haircuts, but has often been asked to cut females’ hair as well. Julian also possesses something that all small businesses need in order to succeed: a reliable customer base. “I offer people quality haircuts for affordable prices,” Julian said. Among his list of clients are seniors Ben Juster and John Lennon and junior Thomas Procopovich. Julian consistently offers them good service and maintains a friendly demeanor. “I think he’s better than a barber. You can really talk to him like a real person. He knows the style you like and takes all the time needed for you to get it,” Procopovich said. He also offers a convenience unlike many of his corporate peers. “It’s so much better for me to pay $10 to go to his house than to pay $20 to go to a barber,” Lennon said. “I’m a lot more comfortable with him than some stranger,” he said. As for future endeavors, Julian has a solid plan for where he is going. He says “After I finish college, I want to get my barber license and open my own shop. If things got really good, I would consider turning it into a chain franchise.” Julian has come a long way since his beginning mishaps. He has improved his craft, built a loyal customer base, and set up goals for himself. His days of hair patches missing are merely humorous memories from the past.


The Lariat


Long ago, when senior Julian Scott was just a freshman, he began what would be his first steps into the haircutting business. A neighborhood friend and CCHS graduate, Aaron Alva had asked him for a simple haircut. Julian gladly accepted the offer. Everything was fine until about halfway through the haircut, the attachment on Julian’s clippers fell off. The result? A patch of hair missing from Aaron’s head. In reaction, Julian did what any strategic professional barber would do; shave the rest of his head to mask the spot. Need less to say, Aaron wore a hoodie for the next couple of weeks. Julian began his interest as an amateur barber over two and a half years ago. He was fed up with unsatisfying haircuts and the fees from barber shops. As a result, he came up with the solution to start cutting his own hair. After sharpening his skills, he started giving free haircuts to all of his friends, who, in turn spread publicity about Julian’s service. As his customer base grew, Julian started charging minimal fees. He then used these profits to purchase professional equipment like new clippers, scissors, outliners, and a straight edge razor. Julian uses his house as his own personal barber shop, performing all the necessary tasks on his own, including cleanup duty. Customers pay the $10 haircut fee, or $5 for a tape, which is a

Michael Worley

Julian Scott cuts students hair for affordable prices.

Students expressing their creative thoughts
with me for writing at school, and I have two whole binders at home full of my finished pieces and brainstorms.” One may wonder how exactly she brewed up a story about a bloodsucker’s shopping spree. In fact, her prize-winning story originally began as a prompt given to her at a creative writing club meeting. Established in 2006, the freedom found in the weekly, hour-long meetings is nothing common to the English classroom. Typically, the members first go over any business matters that need to be taken care of, and then are turned loose with a prompt. The young writers allow their words to run rampant, and sharing work is always encouraged. “In school, you sometimes get put down just for saying what you’re thinking. I think there’s a lot less of that in the writing club,” Morgan said. Not only does the club offer inspiration to the teenaged authors, but it also makes something out of their finished products. The creative writing club released the first literary magazine to be seen in the halls of CCHS in about five years. Aptly dubbed Mixtape, the one hundred-page book contains an assortment of stories, poems, and artwork produced by students of every grade level. The club plans on releasing their second issue sometime in April. “I entered two stories and a poem,” Morgan said. “The great thing about the magazine is that it lets you actually do something with what you’ve written, instead of just keeping it to yourself.” Recently revived by none other than yearbook and newspaper adviser, Tom Grozan, the literary magazine appears to have undergone a drastic makeover. According to English teacher Ms. West, the magazine used to be produced by Ms. Liverpool through her creative writing class. “After Liverpool left, the magazine pretty much faded away,” West said. In the past, the magazine was often adopted by different groups of students instead of a solid staff. Consequently, each issue had a different title and layout. “I remember it being a sporadic publication,” English teacher Suzanne Margolin said. “From what I’ve seen, the format has been exponentially bumped up.” Because the book was not heavily advertised, it did not garner much popularity in 2007. However, the club has bigger plans for publicity this time around, and has already gotten a jumpstart on fundraising. Several members participated in holiday gift wrapping at Barnes and Noble, a familiar place and beloved hangout to the blossoming authors. There are other projects in the works, and the club will be hosting presales of the book in all English classes. While this club is surely already bursting at the seams with tale-telling talent, there is certainly room to grow. New creativity is always welcome – and no one should let fear of criticism overshadow their urge to take a stab at it. “Don’t ever be afraid to express yourself,” Morgan said. “Any idea is worth sharing, and any experience is worth writing about.”

Michael Worley

“Mixtape” was published through the Creative Writing Club last year.


“Now don’t make a mess like you did with Snowball,” I said fondly, watching them. “Don’t worry mommy,” said Timothy. “He won’t feel a thing.” Then without another word, he plunged his fangs into the puppy’s neck. Benji whined faintly, then fell silent, but I didn’t care. I just watched with pleasure, knowing the present was well worth the trouble. Thus closes Terese Morgan’s award-winning short story, “Well Worth The Trouble.” Dark and sinister, Morgan

claims that vampires going shopping isn’t one of her usual themes – and she has many. Terese Morgan admits that she’s thought of herself as a writer ever since she could string two words together. For only a high school junior, Morgan has a lot to be proud of. She won $100 in a writing contest sponsored by Literary Feast for her tale about a vampire going shopping, and has recently entered a 100-word essay contest, in which she had to construct a masterpiece in exactly 100 words – no more, no less. Suffice it to say, Morgan cuts no corners when honing her craft. “I carry my composition book



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February 2008

The Lariat
leading to a bottomless pit for the obese of Mississippi. However, many doctors disagree with the validity of the BMI scale. The scale measures the ratio of weight to height, but it fails to account for muscle mass or other aspects of fitness. Yes, the bill can benefit the obese of Mississippi by bringing unprecedented attention to the issue, but the bad certainly out-weighs the good. The bill in question is unconstitutional and passing it can open up doors for further violations of human rights. Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of evidence that America’s love handles are growing exponentially. But there are other ways to go about solving the issue. Restaurants and even cities have taken significant strides in the battle against cellulite tsunamis. More and more restaurants, even fast food, are keeping their customers calorie-conscious. And city or statewide approaches are also proving effective. Last year, New York banned all restaurants from cooking with transfats On top of being utterly absurd, the proposition cannot be less practical. I doubt that lawmakers expect to arm every restaurant with a BMI scale, potentially scaring off their most valuable customers. The criteria are also flawed in that it rewards the 29s and 28s for being slightly less fat. It goes without saying that Mississippi is neither the smartest or slimmest state in America; but it doesn’t take much of a genius to see the flaw in Mayhall’s proposition. Our country has gotten past enough irrational laws to make a healthy decision regarding what to do with the issue of obesity. And so it disgusts me that the bill wasn’t met with enough public ridicule to send Mayhall crying home to his tub of low-fat Ben and Jerry’s ice cream.

The Lariat
Editorial Board: Adviser: Tom Grozan Editors-in-Chief: David Tintner Ann Nacknouck Managing Editor: Robert Yanks News: Rebecca Weiss Opinions: Shaina Coogan Features: Jennifer Pritchard Entertainment: Taylor Cohen Sports: Robert Yanks Chief Photographer: Michael Worley Business Manager: Sara Leiter Graphics Designer: Ashley Valdivia

Survival of the slimmest

Staff Writers:

Jolly Attia Monica Berra Michael Eisenberg Ashley Fierman Scott Gershkow Jonathan Griffith Lane Hacker Jeffy Joseph Max Levy Michael Llerena David Nathanson Ryan Parker Lindsey Rolls Jaime Sloane Jade Taylor Alex Wild

The Lariat firmly believes in upholding the first amendment but also recognizes the responsibility of a publication to be accurate and factual.

Editorials Too young to decide
This year, freshmen are required to choose a major and direct their classes toward their single goal. Although it focuses the freshmen on their priorities and future goals, it limits their ability to explore other fields. Freshman year is critical in high school, not only because grades actually begin to count, but also as a chance to test the waters of all different fields of study. Fourteen year olds are too young to be deciding on a future, especially when the goal of this requirement is to give students a feel for college. Freshmen, upon choosing a major, are supposed to complete and pass at least four classes geared toward their selected major. This plan was meant to prevent failure and lower dropout rates, but it can easily backfire. Furthermore, this requirement comes at a time when fewer electives are being offered, thus limiting the choices freshmen have. About twelve electives were dropped from the course selection list. Students who are uncertain and are still forced to make a decision might drop out, or fail the classes that don’t interest them. The idea of each student having a chance to plan their entire high school career and a more individualized relationship with his or her guidance counselor. However, we do not believe that any freshman should be forced into declaring a major.

A stumbling drunk asks the bartender for a drink, only to be denied. This is a common sight in bars, as bartenders have a duty to cut off people who have had too much. That one extra drink can prove fatal for those on the road, or even a simple passerby. So when W.T. Mayhall Jr. proposed a bill to the Mississippi state legislature that would ban all obese people from restaurants, he had the same idea in mind. For the welfare of the community, Mississippi should have the right to cut off an overweight person when they have had one too many Big Macs. Now, how on earth can such a proposition cross the minds of even the most minimally logical beings? Two words: Mississippi. No, I did not make a mistake in my arithmetic; I am merely mimicking the dim-witted nature of the Mississippian legislature. In a nation that has endured a handful of social faux pas in the past, it’s safe to say that motions of this sort can only regress our gradual march towards nondiscrimination. We have overcome slavery, virtual misogyny, and inequity based on age, to establish nationwide suffrage and equal employment opportunities. And yet new instances of discrimination arise readily. With this intolerance, the representatives of our beloved nation had the nerve to propose outrageous bills in an attempt to “call attention to the serious problem of obesity.” If passed, though highly unlikely, enforcing the law will not be a judgment call. “Any food establishment… shall not be allowed to serve food to any person who is obese.” The criteria for obesity depends on the person’s Body Mass Index. A BMI of 30 or higher rings an alarm and opens a trap door

As if the endless streaks of commercials on TV weren’t enough, inescapable advertisements are now arousing discontent on the Internet. Sure, flamboyant ads are nothing new for Internet users worldwide, but the manner in which the advertisements are created has proven to pester many. The launch of Facebook’s “Beacon,” created a whole new level of needless voyeurism. Who cares if their best friend just rented The Shawshank Redemption? Or if a random acquaintance just booked a flight to Brussels? Despite our outward discontent with “Facebook stalkers,” we continue to be them. Not seeing a problem with that implies inexcusable blindness. We at The Lariat recognize the importance of profits from ads, but the lack of consent in this new wave of advertising appalls us. The Lariat sees this as borderline unconstitutional, and we condemn those who disregard privacy policies and demonstrate a lack of respect for the population. It is doubtlessly wrong to exploit confidential information without an explicit go-ahead. Despite the fact that is it nearly impossible to go five minutes surfing the web without seeing a single pop-up ad, we should still have some right to privacy.

Commercial controversy

In 2007, a law was passed mandating that Florida public school years could begin no earlier than fourteen days before Labor Day. A later start meant later testing; final exam schedules had to be pushed forward until after winter break. Finals are stressful enough without a seventeen day break between class and exams. Upon returning to school, most students are lost in a haze of laziness. Though there was one week of classes immediately following the break, and before finals were administered that week was, essentially, a washout. Very little was actually learned, and most students were buckling under the pressure of remembering and cramming everything they didn’t study over vacation. The Lariat understands that there are many reasons that school needs to begin at the end of August, but having finals before winter break is beneficial to students and teachers alike. Though it will make the second semester a week longer than the first, the extra week before finals after break is not productive.

A wasted week

Juyoung Lee


February 2008
You can’t play exceptionally well in your sport and expect to be seen, it’s a long and drawn out process.” The recruiting process usually begins for an athlete on September 1, during junior year when coaches can legally send letters or packages. Phone calls and personal contact begins July 1, after junior year. During an athlete’s senior year, they can officially visit five different Division I colleges at the college’s expense. The visits can last anywhere from a single day to two nights. The visiting athlete will stay in a dormitory with one of the college’s players. There are countless numbers of reasons that factor into a decision of where to attend college. Many athletes that go to college do not end up going on to play in professional sports. For this reason, the quality of education that the college has to offer plays an important factor in the decision for athletes. Playing time and the style of coaching are also major factors in deciding which college to attend. Location can also be a factor in the decision process because some players may not want to go to a college far from their home.

The Lariat

Signing for scholarships

Only two years old and in a crib, it was quite obvious to father, Pete Schlang, that his son was going to be a dynamic soccer player. At this early age, Ben Schlang always found a way to kick the toys and stuffed animals that littered his crib, out onto the floor. No matter what his father did to prevent this from happening, Schlang never failed. It wasn’t until his third birthday that Schlang was introduced to his first soccer ball, an orange, inflated rubber ball, about the size of a grapefruit. Schlang kicked the ball and never looked back. Following his crib kicking days, Schlang expressed a desire to play at a higher level and earn a college athletic scholarship for soccer. Through a combination of competitive youth teams and high school soccer, Schlang advertised himself the best he could to college scouts and eventually earned a scholarship to play at Emory University. “It took a lot of hard work on behalf of my coaches, parents and myself, but I finally got the scholarship I wanted all my life,” Schlang said. “The scholarship doesn’t just happen.

“Location is a huge factor for me as a kicker,” senior football recruit Robert Yanks said. “I really don’t want to play football for a school up north where games throughout the season can be at or below freezing temperatures which would make the ball much harder to kick.” Schlang is a top recruit and was recruited by Davidson, Brandice, Case Western, Temple and Emory. It didn’t take long for Emory to establish itself as his favorite. “I fell in love with the campus after taking my official visit,” Schlang said. “The strong soccer and academic programs made my decision easy.” Laura Fountain has recieved a scholarship as well with great success in softball. Being recruited by the University of Tennessee, the University of Florida, the University of Alabama and the University of South Florida, she decided to become a Bull and attend USF. “USF gave me the best chance to gain a good education, while still playing for

Robert Yanks

Above: Laura Fountain signs her letter of intent for USF. Inset: Ben Schlang emphasizes school spirit in an Emory University sweatshirt.

a competitive softball program,” Fountain said. “They have the medical program that I want to attend, which was also a big factor in my decision.” Sean Curtis, starting fullback for the football team, recently played in the BCAA All-Star game. Oberlin College noticed his outstanding play and began recruiting him. He recently committed and plans on enrolling there next year. “Having one of the top-

20 liberal arts programs in the country, combined with being able to play college football led me to commit to Oberlin,” Curtis said. There are millions of high school athletes that aspire to earn a scholarship every year. Only a select group of athletes have the athletic ability to accomplish this goal. For so many Cooper City students to be part of this group, it is a very special feature.


Best of both worlds
Growing up in Africa, Coach Julius Sandi was a soccer phenom. Little did he know, basketball would go on to shape his life.
of leisurely play in the street. They had tournaments in which they kept track of results and standings. What looked like a strong future in soccer turned into a life full of success in basketball. At the age of nine, Sandi moved to the United States where he began to learn and play the game that uses hands instead of feet. “When I came to the states I picked up the basketball and the rest is history,” Sandi said. As a talented shooting guard and point guard, Sandi advanced his career by playing NAIA Division II basketball at Johnson and Wales University in Miami. Although he was attending a school notorious for the culinary arts, he earned a degree in sports management and event management. He was a basketball captain, a student activities center leadership participant, and an alumni award recipient of Johnson and Wales. His biggest success in college came when the team won a national championship in 2003. It was a struggle for him throughout the season, but the




10 seconds left in the game. His heart is throbbing, eyes are twitching, and his mind is running. The pressure is building on Coach Sandi as he tries to coordinate an effective team play. Sandi speaks with intense passion to his team. This is the willpower that has helped Sandi accomplish many achievements throughout his life. Julius Sandi began his sporting career as a child with an early love for the game of soccer in Liberia, West Africa. He played soccer almost everyday with his neighborhood friends whenever he could find free time. Sometimes he was limited to playing with grapefruits and oranges instead of playing with a latex rubber soccer ball. “Occasionally, we could not find a soccer ball in the neighborhood; instead we had to play with fruits until they burst,” said Sandi. Sandi and his friends decided to develop a league after many years

Coach Julius Sandi (center) mentors senior Geoff Turnquest (22) during a timeout in the district playoff loss to Cypress Bay.

championship erased the thoughts of all the bad stats he had in the regular season. “It was a tough season for me but I was able to overcome the pain when I won the championship,” Sandi said. After completing four victorious years and winning a national championship as a student athlete, he began using his valuable skills to coach children ages 6 and up. “I love coaching and I try to make every kid that I encounter have as positive of an experience as possible,” Sandi said. For three years, he coached Broward travel basketball. He jumpstarted his high school coaching career when he became the Junior Varsity head coach for Cooper City High School. After three years at the position, he took a promotion becoming the official head coach of the Varsity basketball team. It was considered a drastic change for him as there is a major difference in the skill level between junior varsity and varsity basketball players. “The speed, strength, size, mental aspect and the social environment are all aspects that are different between the two levels,” Sandi said. As a new coach with a team full of young players, the season outlook was optimistic from the start. Winning four of the first five games on the schedule, it looked as though they would contend for the district title. Although, since the quick start the team has had its up and downs, it is expected given the circumstances. In addition, to coaching the varsity basketball team, he also is a private basketball instructor. He manages basketball camps during the spring, summer, and winter school breaks. “Sandi’s experience and expertise of the game combine to provide Cooper City High School with the finest basketball coaching,” varsity basketball player, Josh Rosa said. Julius Sandi’s presence at Cooper City High School gives the varsity basketball team hope for many successful seasons. luck in the future with his family and any other coaching oppurtunity he pursues. Unfortunately, every good thing comes to an end, and it is time to look ahead at what will become of Cooper City’s Friday night pride. Although a new coach has yet to be chosen, certain characteristics and qualities are needed in any viable candidate. The coach must be able to demand respect out of the team. Elder was the Bobby Bowden, the Joe Paterno of Cowboy football. Anyone who played on the team knew what to expect from him and immediately lent him their respect. The new coach must build a fresh legacy and tradition that will influence students to try out for the team and influence fans to come out to the games. Respect is the key characteristic in making this legacy a reality. Experience in the sport would be a welcomed quality in any candidate. A coach who has played high school and college ball knows what each player goes through on a daily basis. This type of coach knows how tough it can be to complete the normal load of homework assigned every night, along with football practice and a job. Coaching experience on the high school level is crucial as well. You can’t hand the program over to someone who has never coached at the varsity level and expect to win. A coach with experience ultimately knows how to handle situations and problems better than those without experience. As I have stressed earlier in the article, the most important quality to look for in a coach is belief. Not everyone believes a bunch of scrappy and immature high school students can mesh together to form a winning football team, it is this belief that sets a good coach apart from a great coach. A coach should be able to look at the players on the team and see college football potential in every one of them. After recognizing the potential, it is important for the coach to improve the players in areas they need work on, including athletic and academic aspects. High school football can open doors for student athletes that can lead to a free college education through an athletic scholarship. After all, there is nothing more important than school, not even football. The holes that Elder left behind will be tough to fill, but with proper research and interviews of each candidate, the program can soon be better than ever. The decisions made today can affect the team for the next decade, we should use caution before making such a drastic change.

Robert Yanks

As I see it
As the clock approached zero, the nerves and thoughts that raced through my mind grew and a chilling fright swept over my body. It was only a preseason jamboree game against Hallandale High School. The outcome wouldn’t carry any influence into the season ahead, but for me, it was life or death. The first time I ever lined up for a field goal in a varsity football game, the only digits on the scoreboard were the two seconds left in the time slot. A 42-yard, walk off kick, could break the shut out and bring victory to the visiting Cowboys. As I trotted onto the field, every bone in my body was trembling. It wasn’t until Coach Jim Elder said a few simple words that I was calm and collected. “I believe in you Yanks,” Elder said. “Just go out there and kick it through the posts like you do everyday in practice.” These were the last words I heard before my teammates were jumping up and down in celebration on the sideline. I owe a great deal of my success to coach Elder, the AllAmerican and All-State selections I received would have been near impossible under any other coach. His belief in me to succeed was so strong, that in only two seasons of varsity football, I received more field goal attempts than most high school kickers receive in their career. Following a highly successful season with seven wins in a district that boasts the state champion, St. Thomas Aquinas, Elder announced his retirement which came as a shock to all. With the need to spend more time with family, Elder ended his legacy as the Cowboys’ head coach after 11 years at the position. I would like to thank Elder for every hour of time spent in developing the program, every punishment given for broken rules and every ounce of belief he poured into my teammates and I. I would not be the player, or the man I am today without the guidance of coach and I wish him the best of


Sporting the ultimate




Michael Worley

Senior Jonathon Scharr (right) fully extends his body to catch the Frisbee as Junior Matthew Dalmau (left) attempts to defend the incoming attack. The two play every Friday afterschool with the rest of the Ultimate Frisbee Club members. BY JONATHAN GRIFFITH

The common chaos, competition and training that is a part of the tryout process in most school sponsored sports is not appreciated by senior Sean Roberts. Roberts, who participated in the JCC youth basketball league as a child enjoys the passion, skills, and excitement that sports have to offer but can’t stand it when players take competition too seriously. For this reason, Roberts has created the Ultimate Frisbee Club; students can now take part in school related sports that do not mandate competition. The club does not require any athletic experience or ability, just a good attitude and a will to play the game. “I just wanted to start a sport at school, that students didn’t have to try out for,” Roberts said. Roberts

started the Ultimate Frisbee Club late in 2007 and was shocked with the number of students who showed up for the first meeting in December. “I couldn’t believe about 40 kids came out to play Frisbee,” Roberts said. “I’m really glad someone made a club for Frisbee, we had been talking about it for a while, but now it’s a reality,” senior club member Ryan Verola said. Very active in the school’s extracurricular activities and loved by students around the campus, English teacher, Mr. Boone, is the club sponsor. “Why’d I do it? Because some kid asked me to be a sponsor, I didn’t think much of it, figuring it would be just a few kids,” Boone said. “I expected maybe 10 kids, when 40 showed up to the first meeting I had to rethink things, this club was serious.” The objective of Ultimate is to score points by receiving a teammate’s pass in the opponent’s end zone,

similar to an end zone in American football or rugby. Players may not run while holding the disc which makes it necessary to pass in order to advance the disc. Fouls can be called if a defender physically prevents the attacker from throwing the Frisbee or puts any other player in danger. The referee is responsible for calling the fouls and makes sure play is legal and fair. The club has a meeting once or twice a month on Friday’s in room 213. They remain indoors for a few minutes until the club is quickly moved to the athletic fields. Billy R. Gill Stadium is the field of preference but the members play where ever space is available. Depending on the amount of students on any given Friday, the club will split into two games to accommodate the crowd. The first collegiate ultimate

club w a s formed by Hollywood producer, Joel Silver, when he arrived at Lafayette College in 1970, the first intercollegiate competition was held at Rutgers, between Rutgers and Princeton on November 6, 1972. Now, after 30 years, Ultimate is being brought to Cooper City High School. Roberts and Boone have high expectations for the club and hope to eventually create an interscholastic team and league to help spread the popularity of the up and coming sport. All students are welcomed and encouraged to come out and play whether they have a lot of athletic ability or none at all.

Robert Yanks

Robert Yanks

Members of the Ultimate Frisbee club enjoy the camaraderie of the game. The club is not only for competition, but for friendship and teamwork as well.

Senior Jason Kroon attempts a back handed pass while Sophomore Brock Snider tries to block the Frisbee’s path.