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Malden High School Volume 96 Edition 3 Our 96th Year December 2010
Juniors Trail behind Seniors in Spirit Week
Medford-Malden football game coverage on page 19. Photo by Lauren Benoit.
Malden High School came together before the Thanksgiving break to participate in the annual Spirit Week before the Malden/Medford football game. Every year, MHS students look forward to showing off their school spirit and earning points for their class. The week culminates with the pep rally held on Wednesday, which ends the week before the game on Thanksgiving morning. Photo by Lauren Benoit. Complete story on pages 11 and 12.
Swim Team Welcomes New Members
In This Issue:
Hipster Apocalypse page 4 Secularism of Christmas Page 5 Korean Conflict Page 7 Monthly Profile Jamie green Page 9 Red Cross Blackout Dance Page 11 Spirit Week Pages 12 - 13 MHS Sports Budget Cuts Pages 19-21 Wrestling Page 22
Jeri Scibelli and Jimmy Malzone’s comics on pages 3 and 4. Chris Ware illustration of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Lexington Herald-Leader 2010. MCT. More Wikileaks coverage on page 6.
Freshman Bestine Cong swims the freestyle as part of the Malden High School swim team. Photo by Sharon Lee. Article on page 22.
Working: The Musical
The Malden High School Play Production put on its annual fall performance, Working: The Musical, on Nov. 19 and 20, 2010. The production was led by director and English teacher Sean Walsh. Here, senior Olivia Pagliccia and junior Daniel Rendon are shown performing. Photo by Catherine Poirier. Complete story on page 15.
Basketball Pages 23 - 24
Opinion 2-5 World News 6-8 Local News 9-15 Entertainment 16-17 Sports 19-24
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Richard Holbrooke: 1941 - 2010
Malden High School
The Blue and Gold
77 Salem St. Malden, MA 02148
EDITORS-IN-CHIEF João Nascimento Nidale Zouhir MANAGING EDITORS Brittany Foley Alexandra Mathieu HEAD COPY EDITOR Brittany McFeeley ONLINE EDITOR Omar Khoshafa HEAD LOCAL NEWS WRITER Cristina Peters HEAD WORLD NEWS WRITER Dan Holmqvist HEAD ENTERTAINMENT WRITER Reginah Sanyu HEAD SPORTS WRITER Alfonse Femino HEAD OF BUSINESS Alexander Gennigiorgis HEADS OF PHOTOGRAPHY Lauren Benoit Sharon Lee HEAD OF SPECIAL PROJECTS Kayla Bramante COPY EDITORS Haley DeFilippis Catherine Poirier Megan Kelly Natalie Fallano Paige Yurek Joshua Kummins REPORTERS & PHOTOGRAPHERS Rebecca Broomstein Kaela Bryan Freddie DiPhillipo Johanna Lai Kristen Leonard Jacob Martino Vicki Ngan Amalia Quesada Nylen Timothee Pierre Amanda Rosatone Joel Stevenson Lesley Ta ADVISOR Ryan Gallagher Established in 1915 Check out our online edition:
resident B a r a c k Obama paid homage to the “Raging Bull” of diplomacy, Richard Holbrooke, who at age 69, died of c a r d i o va s c u l a r complications after undergoing 20 hours of surgery to repair an aortic dissection. Obama labeled Holbrooke as a “true giant of American foreign policy…[and] Richard C. Holbrooke, the Obama a truly unique administration’s special envoy for figure who will Afghanistan and Pakistan, has be remembered died. He was 69. Here, Holbrooke for his tireless is seen in this November 1999 file diplomacy, love photo addressing the National of country, and Press Club. (Chuck Kennedy/ pursuit of peace.” MCT) Tireless is an understatement. After he graduated from Brown University in 1962, Holbrooke’s career began with a foreign service posting in Vietnam, and since then, he served under every Democratic president: from John F. Kennedy to Obama. Holbrooke long list of distinctions include foreign policy landmarks in Vietnam, Morocco, Germany, and most famously, the crafting of the Dayton Peace Accords, which ended the threeyear long civil war in Bosnia. Since Jan. 2009, Holbrooke was serving as special adviser on Pakistan and Afghanistan, a loosely defined position in which his responsibility was to tackle the immense complexity of the problems that plague both countries (on the side, he ran the non-profit Global Business Coalition on AIDS, Tu-
berculosis and Malaria). His death has taken the White House by surprise, and without the glue he provided, a shadowy vacuum hovers over the relationship between the United States and Afghanistan. As revered as Holbrooke may have been during his foreign service career, it is painfully difficult to find youth who have an idea of the impact the diplomat has had in the course of the United States, and just how tight his grip was around American policy. Among his myriad of achievements, Holbrooke’s most remarkable qualities were his compassion and his humanitarian inclination that guided his policy decisions. As chair of the Asia Society, Holbrooke stressed the importance to reach out to the poor and minority communities of the continent, all the while preaching tolerance towards Islam, which he argued was a religion that, at the core, argued for cultural understanding, compassion, and invaluable moral lessons. American foreign policy decisions are the target of worldwide scrutiny and criticism, and when comparing Holbrooke’s vision to what the United States is usually associated with—unjust invasions, oil-seeking capitalistic moves, and exceptionalist international law violations—one begins to wonder why such an exemplary officer would not be chosen to serve as Secretary of State, or to receive the Nobel Prize, or at the very least, to be recognized by the mainstream media before his death. It may be that the partisan campaign politics that reign over the nation cloud the already uninformed population that is on its way to having less students graduating from high school each year, or it may be that Holbrooke was never used as a poster child for America’s egalitarian ideals because there existed an incompatibility between his individual policy ideology and the White House’s. What is clear is that, after Holbrooke’s death, there are some extraordinarily large shoes to fill, and a chance for the United States to support a new, even more just and humanitarian political agenda, one that can begin the long process of redeeming the nation’s image overseas.
The Blue and Gold is an open forum for student expression. It is produced by students for the school and the community. The views presented in this paper are not necessarily those of the advisor or the school administration. The views presented in the editorials are those of the editors-in-chief or guests. The goal of The Blue and Gold is to inform and entertain students as well as the community regarding issues that we feel are important. We strongly encourage readers to respond to material printed in the form of signed letters to the editors. No libelous, malicious, defamatory, obscene, or unsigned material will be printed. The Blue and Gold reserves the right to edit the letters. Names may be withheld upon request. Not all letters will be printed. Although The Blue and Gold appreciates the support of advertisers, we may refuse any advertisement that violates the above policy or that promotes products questionable to student use. Any correspondence concerning this publication should be directed to Mr. Ryan Gallagher’s room in C339 or to his mailbox in the main office.
On the front page, Jessalynne Brown is wrongly captioned as Bridget Furlong. On page 7, Chokyab’s name is mispelled in the photo caption on page 7. On page 13, in the Marching Band article, band teacher Matthew Tavares’s name is spelled incorrectly On page 14, Anita Caceda has the wrong last name in the Semi-Formal article. On page 15, Viviane Szeto is not captioned correctly for the Breast Cancer Awareness club photo. On page 23, the Cassandra Ulwick profile was written by Brittany McFeeley not Haley DiFilippis On page 26, Cynthia Laurore’s and Haley DeFilippis’s names are spelled incorrectly. Corrections to the editor can be submitted to email@example.com
The Blue and Gold c/o Malden High School 77 Salem Street Malden, MA 02148
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Letters to the Editor
United States history teacher Coryne Legare’s freshman US history classes were asked if the American dream lives up to the ideals expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Here are some of their responses.
Sarah Bazir Freshman The American Dream is a concept of humanity instilled into the American people by the Declaration of Independence. We as Americans are each granted the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. The Pursuit of Happiness and the American Dream go hand in hand, and almost are interchangeable in American philosophy. The American Dream shaped this nation from its grass roots and all through out its History. The American Dream is the grit of America, which drove people all around the world to immigrate here, and gain the ability to decide their future. I am the daughter of a Moroccan immigrant who left an underdeveloped country in hopes that he can chase after his own American Dream and have a better life for himself and his posterity. My father came from Morocco at age 24; he had not a penny to his name, spoke not a word of English, and knew not a single soul. He left everyone he knew, everything that was familiar to him back home in Casablanca in order to start a new life, in his new home of America. He wanted to break the rut of poverty that he was almost bound to if he stayed in Morocco. My father grew up impoverished. There were times when he would walk to school without shoes, and simple things like going to see a film were much too much of a luxury for him. He decided that he didn’t want his children to live a childhood in the fashion that he did; he didn’t want his children to just survive, he wanted them to thrive. The American Dream is not winning the lottery; it’s not something achieved with luck. It is something within each one of us, a glimmer of hope, a chance. Wyler Giordani Freshman The American dream is defined only in the words of those who seek it. Some people even travel from different parts of the world for the American Dream, but only to find more problems. Problems such as immigration laws, health insurance, and money are some of the situations that lead to the American Nightmare. People who come from other countries hear about the American Dream, and they seek it mostly because their country might not have the rights that our country provides. The Declaration of Independence states that it is a right to have Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. Freedom of speech and the right to protest are all written in the Bill of Rights. The reason our founding fathers created the United States is to make everyone have equal rights with or without money or power. We all have the right to pursue our happiness, and we the people, can reach the American Dream. Marlynda Menzies Freshman I wasn’t aware of the American Dream. I forgot it even existed. For some people, living in America is no different than living in Haiti or Chile. There is no American Dream. The way we are treated when we come here from another country – all of us stripped and searched- treated like terrorists because they fear us outsiders will bomb their precious land. This is a country revolving around money, money that most of us just don’t have. And now, what happens to the ones that don’t have money? We live on the streets. We die in the winter months because the snow storms are harsh and no one cares. Want to know what I thought my American Dream was? Want to know how I thought I would end up after I left my country? When I came here I thought I escaped poverty. This wasn’t my American Dream. This isn’t what I wanted. Xi Gao Senior
Last issue, we commented on the Tibet/China conflict and its implications for Tibetan nationals. We encourage submissions on all topics to promote healthy dialogue and intellectual camarderie.
I would like to comment on the article about the Tibet and China conflict in the last issue of The Blue and Gold. The article should have been edited so that the phrases like “the Chinese” were changed to “the Chinese [authorities]” so as not to insult the people of China. It is okay to criticize the Chinese government for their actions but the government’s actions do not speak for the overall population of China. The one sided coverage of Tibet is unfair. Most of the time, I am hesitant to speak of the Tibet in China’s point of view, because any siding with China automatically labels me as brainwashed by the Chinese Communist Party or cruel. I would like to see an article that covers China from a Chinese point-ofview because I think that, as Americans, we are biased against China. I would like to see you interview people at this school who can give us knowledge of what living in China is actually like. Moreover the Chinese government sends teachers to Tibet to teach them Chinese because they want to help them develop more in education and economy. Learning Mandarin, the most spoken language in the world today, can only benefit them just like how we learn Spanish in our school to help us interact with the rest of the world.
Submissions have been edited for grammar and length.
Have you ever wanted to be published? Do you disagree with something we said? Do you like drawing comics? Writing opinion pieces? Submit your work to firstname.lastname@example.org!
Brittany Foley Managing Editor
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Keep Calm and Hit F5
acebook and Twitter likely experienced significant spikes in popularity over Dec. 6 and 7 2010 as the increasingly popular blogging website, Tumblr, temporarily shut down. The 24-hour crash was the greatest Tumblr has ever seen, despite the simple messages of “Just a minute!” and “We’ll be back shortly,” that greeted users upon each failed attempt to access the site. According to posts by Tumblr, the crash was due to “a major issue in one of [their] database clusters.” While the Tumblr staff was eventually able to restore the condition of the database cluster and get all blogs back online and functioning by that Monday afternoon, access to the website’s “dashboard,” the homepage users see similar to the idea of Facebook’s “news feed,” was still not completely restored until some time later. Now, over a week after the ordeal, users are still publishing jousting posts regarding the crash, many referring to repeated pressing of the “F5” key, whose function is to refresh one’s browser, suggesting post-traumatic stress resulting from the crash still present within the site’s users. And so the overwhelming response surfaced the question, why do Tumblr’s users value it so? The breakdown of Tumblr is simple. It is a blogging website. It’s structure reinforces this idea, and also asserts the fact that Tumblr is meant to be only that—a blogging website. Like most blogging sites, such as Blogger and Wordpress, the network allows for page customization, followers (much like subscribers to a blog), and multiform posting. Tumblr’s organization, however, is far less complex than that of the standard blogging site. On your dashboard, you have the option of posting text, photos, quotes, links, conversations (referred to as “chats”), audio material, or video material. Each of these options is presented by slightly differing labeled icons at the very top of the page. Users have the ability to “reblog” posts they see that they would like to feature on their own blogs and also, much like Facebook, small hearts featured on each post enable users to “like” a post. There are no advertisements, no distracting page layouts, no unnecessary sidebars with functions users will never use. Next to each post is a small, uniform icon of the user’s default image and below each post barely visible tags relevant to content may appear, depending on the poster’s preference. Most individual blog pages follow this idea of minimalism, keeping the focus on the content as opposed to the presentation. In fact, the page layouts of individual blogs are premade, with themes following the simplistic suit of their host site, and are available at the click of a button. With this simplicity in function and design, Tumblr is an internet gem, unlike any other blogging network. While easily accessible to all, however, it inarguably attracts one dominant type (or rather, stereotype): the hipster. The tumblr “hipster” is easily identifiable by the content of his or her blog. Look out for incoherent song lyrics over images of outer space, Helvetica, floral print, evidence of expensive cameras and, above all, triangles. Hipsters love triangles. Even without these particular elements, even with the “hipster” label set aside, most Tumblr users walk the same blogging path. The average dash consists primarily of glitter, pictures of handwritten song lyrics either from an indie band you have never heard of or a Taylor Swift song you have heard beyond enough of, an obnoxious amount of Mean Girls references, and pie charts whose hilarity credits to the sad truth of the common real-life instances they map out. Harry Potter fans are plentiful, as are people that
seem more obsessed with rings than Frodo ever was. Twilight-bashing is about as popular as GIF-generating to these folk, and so is indirectly expressing belief in the power of the Polaroid and indulging in the serendipity of screen-capturing. These are the people that love the books you have heard of but will never read and love the movies you will not watch and have never heard of because you, like most people, probably do not enjoy subtitles, but for these individuals who prefer any language over their own, foreign films are the only way to go—with the exceptions of Harry Potter, Inception and the Disney animated classics, of course. So, in conclusion, if you are tired of the unnecessary complexities Zuckerberg keeps weaving into Facebook, desire a new and improved form of procrastination, shop at Urban Outfitters, and have a nice camera, Tumblr is the place for you. Granted, upon joining the cult that is this new network, you will likely conform to believing that you do not belong anywhere and will remain forever alone. Nonetheless, if you are interested in this new hybrid system of social networking and virtual self-expression, go ahead and log on, so long as you have plenty of Christmas lights handy—they are just as much of a household staple as Nutella and expired film, here.
Comic by Jimmy Malzone.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
‘Tis the “Season for Reason?” What do High School Students Think?
MHS junior Christopher Li does not traditionally celebrate Christmas, but believes that “although everyone may not celebrate the holidays, people may use the holidays as family bonding moments.” About the billboard, Li stated, “It [is] an okay billboard although it [is] promoting its organization of Atheism, I would assume they [are] making fun of Christianity, which [is] kind of aggravating. I find this billboard trying to start an argument not promoting its organization. People have their own religious freedoms and do not need others to criticize.” MHS senior Rita Coté does not have many religious beliefs but does in fact celebrate Christmas. “We celebrate Christmas because it [is] important for everyone to get together as a family to have a nice meal and quality conversation...I think everyone has the right to express what they believe. Just because most people celebrate Christmas does [not] mean their beliefs are more important or accurate than someone else. If I drove by this [billboard] I would be glad that people are using their voices to stand up for what they believe in, no matter what that belief is.”
An atheist group has sponsored a billboard in North Bergen, New Jersey along the approach to the Lincoln Tunnel that calls Christmas a myth. (Tariq Zehawi/The Record/MCT) Paige Yurek Copy Editor
ecember has started, which means the holiday rush has begun: Christmas specials on TV, seasonal songs playing on the radio stations, hundreds of sales throughout the malls, and holiday lights are amongst many traditions in America around this time of year. Of course, whenever this time of year comes around, there is always some controversy over how the holidays, particularly Christmas, are celebrated and expressed. As children around the holiday season, eyes and hearts light up with excitement, hope, and belief, Christmas trees are decorated, snow falls, and there is a sense of magic in the air. As children grow older, the magic seems to fade as such debates over political correctness and how holidays should be celebrated arise, none of which matters when young. For quite a while now, tensions have risen around this time of year, often in public places. Public schools not being allowed to display decorations, stores and shopping malls not being allowed to say “Merry Christmas,” nor “Happy Hanukkah, and even the infamous cross-banning in Italy are some of the anti-holiday spirit actions taken place in the past few years, but what is the point? Are people really offended when others express their religious beliefs, or is it just an argument that is sought after? Are religious holiday being ‘forced’ upon Americans? When American ancestors came to this country, religious freedom was one of their dreams. Today, modernday Americans can celebrate their religions more freely than ever, is this now too much for those who do not believe? CNN reported about an Atheist billboard sighting in North Bergen, New Jersey. The billboard, which bashes Christian holiday beliefs, states, “You know it [is] a myth! This season, celebrate reason! ‘Reasonable since 1963.” The ‘myth’ refers to the Christmas story, about how Jesus Christ, son of God, was born of the virgin Mary in a manger in Bethlehem. 1963 was when the Atheist organization came to be. The organization’s website, atheist.org, devotes itself to not just unbelieving in all different stories, myths, legends, and beliefs that are held dear to many, but the site actually bashes these beliefs. In addition to the controversial billboard, the site contains a ‘no God blog,’ in which members can rant their thoughts, a countdown clock to December 21, 2012, (the date in which, according to Mayan/Aztec culture calendars, the world is supposed to end,) a promotional video on the homepage, and explicit comics with content that puts down these traditions and beliefs. It is one thing to simply not believe, and accept others’ differences, but it is another thing to say it is wrong to publicly celebrate the holidays, and then turn around and bash others’ beliefs. Not only is it hypocritical, but it hurts. Fortunately, not all Atheists are like this. Unfortunately, this organization creates a bad rap for accepting, respectful, Atheists.
MHS junior Warda Khurram is a Muslim who does not celebrate Christmas. When the holiday comes around, Warda said, “I feel left out, mostly all my friends celebrate and give gifts to each other.” If she saw this billboard, she stated, “I would not really care, I does not affect me.”
York High School junior Kristina Kisthart is an Atheist, but celebrates Christmas as well as Hanukkah. Her mother is Jewish, and father is Protestant, meaning she grew up with a mix of religions. “Hanukkah is really fun. It [is] not like most holidays where it lasts for one day. You have eight days of fun. Sure, it [is] not as fancy as Christmas is, but my family always came together around Hanukkah more than any other holiday. I think that Christmas has become too commercial and revolves around getting presents. Hanukkah is [about] family.” Commercial? “I think it’s all the Christmas hype. It [is] partially the Christmas TV shows. And it [is] all the gift giving. Christmas went from being a sacred thing to a way to boost store profits, which is kind of how most holidays are getting. They are still fun though. That Atheist billboard is really aggravating. it makes us look bad. It [is] just ignorant people that can [not] tolerate what others believe in.” North East Regional Metropolitan Vocational High School junior Pablo Patino and his family are very religious, and celebrate Christmas for the reasons the holiday was originally created. “It brings us [my family and I] together, it [is] a time where we say thank you to each other and in God, since we [are] very religious we do [not] think of Christmas as Santa Claus like most Americans, we think of it as the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ,” adding that he found the ad “extremely offensive, because [he] would [not] do anything like that to an Atheist, so they should [not] do it to people like me.”
From top to bottom: Junior Christopher Li, senior Rita Cote, and sophomore Warda Khurram. Photos by Sharon Lee, Catherine Poirier, and Amanda Rosatone
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Wikileaks: A Storm of Controversy
A monitor showing the website of Wikileaks with published confidential dispatches of U.S. diplomats (left) and a portrait of the founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange (right). Photo courtesy of Jens Buettner/Abaca Press/MCT. Kaela Bryan Reporter
ulian Assange has made it his mission in life to expose top secret documents from governments all around the world, giving people insight into the full extent of what their governments want to keep under wraps. Thus, Assange founded WikiLeaks in late 2006. According to Philip Shenon, contributor for the Daily Beast, a news website, and former investigative reporter for the New York Times, the company’s main goal is to “reveal the true nature of things, and then to leave it up to the public to take the next steps in addressing the issue.” WikiLeaks is meant to reveal information that was meant to remain confidential. Namely, secrets of our government -- the government of the United States of America -- have been revealed. Assange used to be a computer hacker in Australia. Via his hacking, Assange began to discover information about the Australian government that he was not allowed to be privy to. He then decided to leak the secrets to the Australian public. While Assange says that he “love[s] Australia,” his return would be “impossible”; he has been banned from Australia for being a mole. If he were to return, he “would be immediately arrested.” According to Assange, the Australian government “is actively working to assist the United States government in its attacks on myself and [the people of WikiLeaks].” Forced out of his home nation by his own work, Assange came to America. Here, he continued to uncover top-secret information just as he did in Australia. “It took four years to build up the face,” according to Assange, of WikiLeaks, but now Assange has finally made the front page. With the alleged help of 22-year-old US intelligence specialist, Bradley Manning, Assange has leaked vital infor-
mation about the full extent of what the US government allegedly did in Iraq. Again, Assange published the private documents on the Internet for the world to see -- this time, American secrets were revealed. “These 391,832 documents that were released show that 681 Iraqi civilians were killed at U.S. checkpoints, 180,000 Iraqis were arrested during the war and 15,000 Iraqis were buried without being identified,” said ABC News. While these numbers are without a doubt staggering on their own, there is no context along with these documents; there is no attachment about the circumstances during which these acts apparently took place. Therefore, who is to say that these people died unprovoked, or undefended, or even by the hands of our American troops? Assange claims that he has divulged the truth though, and he claims that what he, the people of WikiLeaks and Manning have done is that of “an unparalleled hero,” and that it is crucial that the public know about what “really happened.” Yet others strongly disagree, and the highly heated controversy continues to make headlines. Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell thinks that the leaked documents will jeopardize future US military action. He has that the documents “expose secret information that could make [American] troops even more vulnerable to attack in the future. Just as with the leaked Afghan documents, we know our enemies will examine this information, look for insights into how we operate, cultivate sources and react in combat situations, even the capability of our equipment. This security breach could very well get our troops and those they are fighting with killed.” Tom Flanagan, former senior advisor to the Canadian Prime Minister has stated that
“Assange should be assassinated ... [and that he] wouldn’t feel unhappy if Assange were to disappear.” Also against Assange’s company, President Obama has blocked those with access to the government’s confidence from having any contact with WikiLeaks and Assange. Yet Assange will not cease to ascertain more information. He claims that “the public has a right to know” about what really goes on within their government, and that someone must take the initiative to “step up and reveal secrets to the public.” While this may be true on some level, what about our right to ignorance? Is this information classified for a reason? Should the world be privy to the secrets of the American government and military? Many people would answer “no” to these questions, but Assange asserts that whomever does this is “a leader and is genuinely courageous.” So it would seem that Assange is refusing to even concede that there just may be something wrong about what he is doing, that his actions just might result in the imperilment of vital military action and even the life of soldiers. By leaking this information, then, does it show irresponsibility? Assange also appears to truly believe that there is always some great conspiracy within the government. Does this semi-paranoid edge reduce Assange’s credibility? Recently, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, 32-year-old German spokesman for WikiLeaks quit the company, which he had joined at the end of 2007, just one year after it had been founded. In an interview with the international news magazine Der Spiegal, Somscheit-Berg says that he “wanted to take public responsibility” for the things he has done during his WikiLeaks career, rather than remaining an “unnamed worker.” Perhaps more important,
though, is Somscheit-Berg’s direct condemnation of Assange’s behavior. He claims that he was “forced to quit when it seemed that Assange was growing more and more paranoid.” If Assange is paranoid to some extent, should he be allowed to maintain the position he currently holds? Most of America does not think so, and Assange was forced to flee to Sweden. Assange was going to be facing criminal charges by the American government, but Assange’s plans for escape were soon derailed. On Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2010, Assange was arrested and jailed in London, England on a Swedish warrant and is now being held without bail. He has been charged with the rape of two Swedish women. Many people have welcomed the arrest of Assange, especially the Pentagon. “That sounds like good news to me,” said US Defense Secretary Robert Gates upon discovering the news. However, there are those who disagree; some people think that Assange has been framed and that the two women have come forward claiming that Assange raped them based on political motives. Ken Loach, the film director for Assange’s case, speaks in defense of Assange: “it just seems like a very bizarre coincidence that a man who’s leading a company which is providing some important information about how governments operate—which is in the public interest—suddenly has these charges against him.” Assange himself says that these two women are “attempting to smear his name.” Nevertheless, Assange now has Sweden, England, Australia, and America after him for various, yet related, charges. Now that he is in jail, there is no chance of fleeing again. Even if the rape case proves to be false, Assange will still have to stand and face the world.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Kim Jong Un: Like Father, Like Son
A change in power is marked by tensions between north and south korea
Vicki Ngan Reporter the third and youngest son of North Korean leader, Kim Jong Il, or “Dear Leader”. He was appointed daejang, which is the equal of a four star general, at the age of 27 and has a seat on the Central Committee. Can this be a possible explanation for the torpedo shooting and fired shells? In order to rise to power, Jong Un has to build his credentials, prove himself worthy, and to convince his nation that he is a replication of his grandfather, Jong Il Sung, or “Great Leader.” Jong Il Sung had founded the government in 1948 and is still the head of state even though he died in 1994. The mastermind of the attacks on South Korea, pressure is put on Jong Un as he gets ready for 2012, the 100th death anniversary of Il Sung, in which by then North Korea plans to become a “powerful and prosperous nation”. But why did Jong-il not give his throne to his first two sons? His first son, Kim Jong Nam, had spent too much time outside the country and was caught trying to get into Japan on a fake ID, losing his father’s favor. And according to I was Kim Jong-il’s Chef by the chef under the pen name of Kenji Fujimoto, believing that his second son, Kim Jong Chol, was too girlish, Jong Il made his favorite son, Jong Un, his heir because he resembled himself in looks and ambition. Although being feared for its nuclear reactor and weapons, and having largest military force in the world, North Korea still faces problems. Even as Jong Un races to build his credentials, time is an issue. With an ailing father who suffered a stroke in 2008 and with 2012 drawing near, Jong Un had no political or military experience until the beginning of 2009, unlike his father and his grandfather. Jong-il had a long apprenticeship before inheriting the power and Il Sung had commanded a guerrilla unit, or irregular battle troops, that Kim Jong Un, heir to North Korea and fought against the Japanese third son of North Korean Leader Kim in World War II. In addition, Jong-il. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia. while Jong Un was studying abroad in Switzerland and developed a passion for basketball class continued to enrich themselves and skiing, he was well fed as up to as the poor dropped down to the 3,000,000 North Koreans suffered point of starvation and disease, and died from a man-made famine. starting a man-made famine. In orKnown for having one of the worst der to be truly accepted as the heir to records for the treatment of their North Korea, Jong Un must face his own citizens, North Korea’s upper problems and overcome them.
n Nov. 23, 2010, a threatening message was sent. It gave South Korea a reminder of the nuclear weapons North Korea possesses. Firing a number of artillery shells at South Korea island, Yeonpyeong, the North Korean attack caused the death of at least four people, including two soldiers and two being civilians. North Korea claimed it was a reply to the shells fired by South Korea earlier. South Korea defensively announced that the earlier firings had been for their annually held “Safeguarding the Nation” military drill. This military drill began because of a torpedo shooting back in March of 2010, in which a South Korean naval vessel sank, killing forty-six people. These attacks have caused military tensions on the Korean Peninsula to be at an 60 year high. An apparent reason for North Korea’s aggressive behavior towards South Korea is for the grooming of Kim Jong Un, current leader Kim Jong Il’s heir. Also named “Brilliant Comrade,” the slightly pudgy and obviously pampered Jong Un is
Katyn Killers Unveiled
Johanna Lai Reporter
New Life Form Discovered
Freddie DiPhillipo Reporter
A 2007 commemoration of the Katyn massacre in Warsaw, Poland. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia.
A team of scientists from NASA revealed that they had found a bacterium growing California’s Mono Lake that subsists on the deadly element arsenic. (Mark Boster/Los Angeles Times/MCT)
n Apr. 3, 1940, 22,000 Polish Nationals were murdered in Katyn Forest in Russia, including approximately 8,000 military officers, doctors, and lawmakers. Last November, Russia’s lower house of parliament finally declared that former Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin was responsible for the massacre. The Katyn Massacre was under investigation by the Russian Federation from 1990 to 2004. From the investigation, they were able to confirm that the Soviet Union was responsible for the crime. During the investigation of the massacre, the Soviets had lied about being involved with the massacre and declared that it was the Nazis who were responsible. MHS Junior Mary Nguyen stated,”It was very likely that someone in Russia caused the massacre, not Germany. However since it was a mystery using Nazi soldiers from Germany was a perfect excuse.” Andrey Klimov, the deputy head of the State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee stated to Russia Today that “That criminal act was committed by Stalin and his comrades… Now, in the declaration of the Russian Parliament, we share the sorrow of the Polish people about that event.”
ASA has discovered a new life form in California’s Lake Mono, known as GFAJ-1. This bacteria works differently from the rest of the organisms on the planet. This microorganism does not use phosphorous; instead it uses arsenic to create its DNA blocks. This new discovery is now compelling scientists to look more at organisms that use arsenic to create DNA blocks and at the site where this recent discovery was made. Scientists are still uncertain how long this “alien” bacteria has been around for; these bacteria might have developed very recently or they could be up to a billion years old. Previously, scientists believed that this bacteria, based off of arsenic, was completely impossible. However, the way NASA has been reporting their findings has disappointed some. Microbiologist Amy Hitchcock Camp, who works at Lehigh University, said, “The announcement made the science look like a disappointment. This does a great disservice to the actual findings and leaves the general public with misconceptions.”
The Blue and Gold December 2010
DREAM Act: A Dream come true or Dream on?
TSA Ramps Up Security Measures at Airports
Timothee Pierre Reporter
Maria Duque, 19, an illegal immigrant, is the vice president of the associated student body at Fullerton Community College. (Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times/MCT) Kristen Leonard Reporter
t is estimated that there are between 12 and 20 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S. Why do they come here? Some circumstances that cause illegal immigrants to move to America are poverty, over population, war, religious prosecution. However, immigrants are often drawn towards opportunities presented to them here. Some of these opportunities include getting an education, getting a job, raising a family, or simply pursuing happiness. The dreams associated with opportunities in America are called collectively, “the American Dream.” Americans are not the only ones who want to live the American Dream; people from other countries want to move here to experience these ambitions. There are some immigrants from other countries that travel here and try to become legal citizens, but there are other “illegal immigrants” who sneak into the country. This means that they are not US citizens, but they live here anyway. Among these immigrants are adolescents. These adolescents usually want an education, but college can cost a lot of money. As a result, a bill that benefits young illegal immigrants was created. On Aug. 1, 2001 The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act was proposed to the U.S Senate. The bill would allow illegal immigrants to apply for a chance to receive financial aid and scholarships for college. This bill will not hand out scholarships to any illegal immigrant; there are requirements. All recipients must have proof of having arrived in the United States before age 16; have proof of residence in the United States for a least five consecutive years since their date of arrival; be between the ages of 12 and 35 at the time of bill enactment; have graduated from an American high school or obtained a GED; and be
of “good moral character” (defined by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services as have not committed any crimes). The act has been defeated numerous times, but keeps finding a way to be voted on again. It has been around for nine years, but why has it not been passed after all this time? Those in Senate that voted for the bill felt that it would benefit America because the students would give back to the country and those against the bill felt that it would take away educational opportunities from American citizens. On Dec. 8, 2010, the House of Representatives passed the DREAM Act. Now the Senate will vote on the bill and if 60 senators support it the bill will be passed. Not everyone opposes the DREAM Act. There have been ads on the radio asking people to support the DREAM Act and there is even a website for people to support of the bill by filling out their names and other personal information. Facebook users have also created a page in support of the bill. This bill seems like heaven for illegal immigrants; however, not all American citizens are not thrilled with it. In a recent interview with Fox News, Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions stated that the DREAM Act is “poorly drafted, filled with loopholes” and says it “rewards illegal behavior.” People are also protesting. According to the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), the DREAM act would cost taxpayers an estimated $6.2 billion a year. It has also been calculated that 1.03 million illegal immigrants will enroll in college and each receive $6,000 a year for every year of attendance to a college. This calculation is for tuition alone and does not include other forms of financial aid. Will America even be able to afford the DREAM Act?
he Transportation Security Administrations (TSA) consists of security officers, inspectors, directors, Air Marshals, and managers who want to protect the nation. Since 9/11, security enforcement has been installed everywhere that could be hit by terrorists, mostly at airports in the United States. The government came up with a plan called The Layers of the U.S. Aviation Security, which is basically what they think would help stop any terrorist attacks. This allows them to have a better, stronger, and more formidable system. Since regulations were institued that banned liquids over three ounces, the TSA has also prohibited pointed-tip scissors, knives, cork openers, and anything with a sharp tip from being brought on a plane. Since 9/11, for instance, rules regarding electronics have seen drastic changes. Since August 4, 2007 laptops, full-sized gaming systems, DVD players, and video cameras have to be removed for there carrying cases and put under an x-ray screening. When people are in line to be searched they have to do three things: show their ID or transportation pass, take out their belongings, and take off their shoes, putting them through a metal detector. If the metal detector goes off they will have to choose either to get patted down or to go into the full body scanner. When people are to get patted down they have to let TSA officials search them for any thing that should not be on them. If someone chooses to go through the full body
search he or she must enter a machine that produces detailed x-ray pictures of your body. Many people have objected to the implementation of full body scanners because they feel it is an invasion of privacy. The reason for full body screening is because recommendations made by the 9/11 commission. The recommendations that the 9/11 commission has put out to improve airline screening include pat downs and full body searches. The TSA has recieved new technology that finds explosives. Greg Soule told CNN that “Travelers will also see more body scanners. More than 400 advanced imaging technology machines are already in place in about 70 airports, and the TSA plans to have almost 1,000 in airports nationwide by the end of 2011.” Concerns have also been raised about international air cargo after an incident involving a printer cartridge full of explosives was sent from Yemen to the United States. Soule added that “100 percent of all the cargo shipped in has been or will be checked for explosives.” In other countries it a different story; they do not check all their cargo for explosives. According to CNN, only two-thirds of international cargo is examined. ”We’re always looking to enhance our technology to stay ahead of the ever-evolving threat,” Soule stated. Despite some objections, the TSA has been upgrading their rules and regulations for security guard at airports so that they can keep our country safe.
A TSA screener advises a traveler on how to go through the full-body scanner at the B-side security checkpoint at Orlando International Airport, Wednesday, November 24, 2010. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/MCT)
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Monthly Profile: Jamie Green, History Teacher
Lauren Benoit Head of Photography
ver since Malden High School history teacher Jamie Green was a young boy growing up in Suffolk, England, he knew what he wanted to do with his life. “[History] was my favorite class, and my favorite teachers [taught] history,” he explained. Green furthered his education at the University of Wales in the United Kingdom, and then took the opportunity to study for his master’s degree at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. Green received degrees in both international politics and international history. After meeting his wife, Green settled in England, because, Green said, he wanted to “show her around Europe.” Then the opportunity to move to the United States arose. Green and his wife had the option to live anywhere in the country, but fond memories of Tufts brought them to Boston. Green said that he “likes [Boston], [it is] a lot of fun, and [it is] only a six hour flight to home!” He came here in 2005, a year he will never forget since it is engraved on the back of his wedding band. When asked what he likes most about the US, Green replied, “Food” without hesitation, but he also likes that living in America is less expensive than living in London. But of course he misses his friends, family,
and good old fish and chips from back home. A testament to Green’s remaining loyalty to the UK is his love for rugby, which he has been playing since the age of seven. Green found himself unable to give up this dedication for what is an admittedly relatively unpopular sport in the US once he reached this side of the pond. “My second night in America, I got myself an apartment, went on the internet, and signed up for the Mystic River Rugby Club,” he recalled. After playing on this team for about five years, Green claimed the rightfully-earned title of captain. His most recent injury was a broken eye socket, from a knee to the eye during a game. The MRRC is ranked top five in the country, which takes Green all across the US to play in tournaments. Green may just appear to be just the typical teacher, but he has traveled the world; his journeys encompass not only all eight British Isles, but also France, Andora, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Switzerland, Estonia, Turkey, Hungary, Morocco, Hong Kong, and South Africa. Green spent so much of his childhood traveling because his military-enlisted father was stationed all over the world. Green feels that it is “important to travel and see the world... language and cultures are dying out and [he] wants to see them before they are gone,” jokingly adding that he would love to visit
New Zealand because its “just the coolest country in the world” He plans to travel there next year in order to attend the Rugby World Cup. Green also reported that he “wants to go to Australia, maybe to see a kangaroo.” Surprisingly, aside from his native English, Green speaks only Welsh, putting him among one of only about 750,000 who do. Green’s favorite topic to teach is the French Revolution because “it’s everything you want a Revolution to be.” He also enjoys studying Elizabethan England, though he prefers later periods of US history, mainly because of US history I’s focus on topics that “bring up bad memories for England” – namely the devastating British loss in America. Although Green lives in the US, he is still a big supporter of the Royal Family. He supports the Jamie Green smiles at the camera. Photo by royal engagement of Prince Megan Kelly. William and feels that WilWhether one is looking to liam’s upcoming marriage to Kate learn the origin of rugby, learn about Middleton will “unite England and world/United States history, or just the British people.” Green predicts looking for a laugh, Green can be that William will take his grand- found on fourth floor D-house. Lismother’s place on the throne as the ten for a British accent and you’ve next king of Great Britain. found the right person.
Middlesex County Sheriff Commits Suicide
Candidate for Mayor Gary Christenson
Lauren Benoit Head of Photography The reason I think is innate for me. I have always wanted to give back to the community that has given so much to me. From my first job as a paperboy to my present position as a city councillor, Malden has helped me be the person I am. As Mayor, I want to help Malden do the same for our future leaders.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
What made you want to run for mayor?
How long have you been preparing to run, and what were your preparations?
Some would say I have been preparing to run for Mayor since junior year at Malden High School. That was when I knew I wanted to serve the public. I have been planning in earnest for several years now. I have been preparing by attending as many events and meeting as many people as possible.
Photo from middlesexsherrif. org. Lauren Benoit Head of Photography
I have narrowed down my campaign to four basic but important themes: Communication, Community, Commitment, and Character. We need to utilize every tool available to communicate with residents because the more they know the more we will grow as a city. I have seen the diverse groups and organizations working across the city to make a difference and we need to include them in the process at city hall. Hard work and dedication has and will be part of my commitment to Malden. I have e-mailed snow removal calls while on vacation, so you know my commitment to the citizens is genuine. Finally, we need to treat people like people want to be treated and that is part of the character trait that I plan to exhibit as mayor. If we can incorporate these tenets into the day-to-day operation of the city I believe we will be able to reach our fullest potential.
What would you like to change about the city of Malden?
How will you help the city develop what your website, http://www.christensonformayor. com/issues.html, calls, “a long-term revitalization plan”?
ragically, Nov. 26, 2010 will be a date always remembered by Middlesex County. On that day, county sheriff James DiPaola committed suicide at the Lafayette Oceanfront Resort in Maine. He was found dead with one shot to the head by his service weapon, a .40-caliber semi-automatic Glock pistol, with a suicide note beside him. Other residents housed at the resort claimed to not hear any sound of a gunshot, but police tell the public that DiPaola hushed the sound with a pillow. No one is to correctly say what led DiPaola to taking his own life, but some might make assumptions that he was overwhelmed about the retirement scandal happening in Massachusetts. The sheriff was supposed to retire the Monday prior to his death, but since re-election he decided otherwise. Once back in office, DiPaola was investigated for using campaign funds towards his own retirement fund. DiPaola was also allegedly raising illegal funds to support his re-election. Starting in January 2011, DiPaola was supposedly planning to collect 100,000 dollars annually in pension funds. There were also allegations that DiPaola stole cash from contributors to his campaign and used it towards personal matters. DiPaola’s note was not leaked to the public; it is instead kept in Maine at the medical examiner’s office. According to Kent Berdeen, Sergent of Wells, Maine, part of the note mentioned DiPaola’s wife and three children.
I will spend a large part of my time selling the city to the outside world. I will also take a fresh look at our marketing strategy. During the visioning forum a few years back, a number of residents stated that some of Malden’s best attributes are location, location, location and great diversity. I think we need to channel our efforts around those themes in order to give Malden a competitive edge.
I have been involved in as many things as humanly possible. I have supported several charitable causes and serve as President of the Bread of Life, an organization that feeds the homeless and All Faiths Festival, a group working to share traditions between the different houses of worship across the city.
How have you been active in the City of Malden in the past years?
As you were Ward 1 City Counselor for a number of years, what were some of you biggest accomplishments in that position?
I would say the establishment of the first-ever e-mail tree which now has close to 700 residents on it. I communicate back and forth with residents on a daily basis about issues in the neighborhood. Also, I am very proud of this past year’s first-ever outdoor youth basketball league held at MacArthur Park, otherwise known as Green Street Park. Finally, I am proud of the improvements to Bell Rock Memorial Park, including the renovation of the World War II Memorial and River’s Edge which contains a 10-acre park for the public to use and enjoy.
An article mentioned that you would like a “fresh start” in Malden, what exactly do you mean by that?
I think we need to do more in the way of utilizing technology, i.e. e-mail trees, citywide WiFi, online forums, working remotely in the community and I think we need to operate differently and efficiently. I also want to take a fresh look at what options we have to address our infrastructure needs. What will you do differently than Mayor Howard? I want to embrace all facets of communicating with the public and I will utilize technology to its fullest extent possible. I also want to look at how and why specific areas of our government operate and whether or not we can be more efficient.
Will you continue to be President of the Bread of Life Organization if you are elected as Mayor of Malden?
Unfortunately, I don’t think so. I believe I will need to channel all of my energy to doing the very best job I can for the Malden community but I will still attend as many Bread of Life-related events as possible. Also, Bread of Life and all community organizations will have an open door with the Mayor’s Office.
INTERVIEW HAS BEEN CONDENSED AND EDITED.
The Blue and Gold newspaper will interview any candidate in this election. If you or someone you know is running for Mayor of Malden in 2011, please contact The Blue and Gold at email@example.com and we can set up an interview.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Malden: A Transformed School District
Cristina Peters Head Local News Writer Omar Khoshafa Online Editor Malden are Hispanic. In 2009, Malden received the “The Best Place to Raise Your Kids” award from Bloomer Business Week, describing Malden as a “racially diverse [city].” Interestingly enough, this very diversity that has come to represent Malden and the MHS student body can also be seen in our multi-ethnic teaching staff. Malden High School has nearly 168 full-time equivalents (FTE), which means that on average, 168 full-time staff members are employed at MHS. Of these 168, 12.5 percent are classified as minorities (Asian, African-American, and Hispanic). One can analyze the data and compare percentages between schools and districts endlessly, yet what is most important is the meaning behind it all. MHS has risen to be a high school with, not only the most diverse student body in more than sixty cities, but also a school with one of the most diverse staff members in comparison to the the cities around it. Teachers from countries ranging from China to England to Puerto Rico make up the staff of our school and serve as one unit that is culturally pleasing, forming a distinct relationship with the student body. the dance and the more money raised will help the club accomplish their set goals for the year. The Red Cross club at MHS has high standards for accomplishing their goals. Some of the club’s goals for the year are raising money to provide help for the villages who need measles vaccines. The money raised goes to villages in Africa. 500 vaccines will be provides to one village although the club aims to raise $1000 to vaccinate two villages. The club hopes to complete this goal by the end of the first semester. During the second semester the club aims to raise money to make gift packages for the armed services . “The dance was a success. [W]e had about 30 members attend [and] it was a great turn out and it gave the school and the club a good reputation,” stated Bashllari.
alden High School has grown from a mere class of 38 students to a baffling 1,720 students. In 1857, the student pioneers of MHS were mostly composed of privileged white males, not a surprising fact for the time. More than 153 years later, the MHS student body has indubitably transformed into a more ethnically diverse unit. Similarly, it is also important to note the exceptional diversity among our staff in terms of both ethnicity and nationality. In comparison to other districts in the Boston area, Malden seems to dominate. Based on The New York Times immigration analysis, “Remade in America,” Malden ranks number one in diversity out of the 70 cities present in the Middlesex county. Collectively, AfricanAmericans, Asians, and Hispanics compose nearly 62.5 percent of Malden students, while both Revere and Everett hold Caucasians as the dominant ethnic group. The African-American student population has skyrocketed over the past decade. In 2000, African-Americans made up nearly 12 percent of the student body in Malden. In 2010, this figure doubled to an impressive 22 percent. Hispanics also saw a comparable rise in educational participation. In 2000, 8 percent of Malden students were Hispanic, and now nearly 18 percent of students in
RED CROSS BLACK OUT
nization reached out to high school Red Cross Clubs and it welcomed students in grades nine through 12 from the Boston and outer Boston area –about 200 people were present. The Red Cross Club is a non-profit organization that raises funds for various causes. “If we have any money
A member of the Red Cross dancing at the Winter Blackout dance. Photo by Amanda Rosatone. Amanda Rosatone Reporter
here was high energy and excitement at Match Charter High school on Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010 as the Blackout Dance was in full swing. The dance entailed three hours – from 7 to 10 p.m. – of fun, as students enjoyed themselves, their friends and dancing. Although the blackout dance served as a fundraiser for the Red Cross Club at MHS, the dance was hosted Youth Advisory Board of Red Cross Mass Bay. This orga-
left over from donating, we use it to start a new fundraiser and raise more money for causes,” explained Bashllari, president of the Red Cross club at MHS. In regards to the proceeds from the dance, the money gained goes to teen hunger relief efforts. The teen hunger relief efforts are sponsored by the food pantry in Boston. This organization works to raise money to provide food to teens that don’t have the means to provide for themselves. This organization also allows teenagers to have a shelter giving them a safe place to go. The more people who attend
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Megan Kelly Copy Editor Reginah Sanyu Head Entertainment Writer Brittany McFeeley Head Copy Editor Pajama Day, Wacky Tacky Day and Blue and Gold Day, where students get to come into school wearing their “jammies,” tacky clothing in clashing colors, and MHS’s school colors. And for those who have not gotten the memo, each student that dresses up each day earns its class points, potentially earning enough points to help that class win spirit week. According to sophomore Mary Carroza, the three days serve primarily to create a sense of fun before the short Thanksgiving break. “It’s like ‘Oh! this is going to be a fun week! I get to dress up and have some fun to get my week started!’” she explained. Another major activity during November is planning and creating themed hallways, sometimes even working a week in advance to create the decorations. The freshmen introduced the McKinley High School Glee Club, with each essential and memorable character, such as, Sue Sylvester in her Adidas gold and white sweat tracksuit. Meanwhile, the Hogwarts Express transported sophomore students into the world of Harry Potter,
efore the big MedfordMalden Thanksgiving Day football game, Malden High School students participated in the three day Spirit Week, an annual and much-loved tradition that has the freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors competing for the bragging rights of having the most spirit during the school year. As per usual, Spirit Week ended with the traditional pep rally, where everyone cheered on MHS’s football team and cheerleaders, who were heading into battle as half of one of the oldest high school football rivalries in the country. As the cheerleaders ran around telling students to cheer louder and the football team had fun shoving into each other in front of the whole student body, what were students in the stands doing? They were all cheering, but is this whole week spent preparing for the Thanksgiving game the reason why students are participating? The three days MHS students look forward to the most on a year-to-year basis are
where Dobby the house elf (a Medford Mustangs player), Severus Snape (C house principal Diane Kiblanski) and Albus Dumbledore (MHS principal Dana Brown) all made guest appearances cheering the MHS Golden Tornadoes on in the Thanksgiving Quidditch match. A trip down the rabbit hole landed students in the juniors’ Nedlam Land, a play on the new Alice in Wonderland movie, where a guillotine prepared to chop of the heads of the Mustangs. The class of
The Blue and Gold December 2010
2011 incorporated a Spongebob themed hallways, along with all of his undersea friends Patrick Star and Squidward Tentacles. The hallways were a major part of who won the the bragging rights, and as usual the seniors came away with the blue ribbon, while juniors and sophomores tied for second and the freshmen came in with a respectable third place. A main factor of what inspires students to involve themselves so intensely in the games of Spirit Week is how each class comes together. The support is not just going all to the football players for the big football game, but it is also going off to each class and showing how much fun it is to work together. Senior Monika Bashllari mentioned that “hallway [decorating] was definitely my favorite day of Spirit Week because there’s about 50 students from our class that come together and work on the same goal, the same project, for hours, and it definitely brings us closer as a
together.” As usual, the majority of students found the pep rally and the hallway decorations the most fun of the week’s activities. Junior Carolyn Lam stated her favorite part of spirit week was “the actual Spirit Day. I like it because [it is] what you look forward to from the beginning of the year.” On the other hand, junior Christopher Li believed that decorating the hallways was the best part of Spirit Week, specifically because it helps students realize “who really tries to help the class.” Maybe the pep rallies of MHS started 121 years ago to pump up the football team to mangle the Mustangs and to prove who the top dog of the area was, but the meaning has since changed; the tradition has now become much more
class. Plus [it is] a lot of fun!” New to Spirit Week, freshman Haley Sutera, expressed, “Well, at first, there was a lot of confusion and organizing but then once we got it all together it was a lot of fun...I met a lot of new people and it definitely brought the freshman class
indicative of fun, with so much time dedicated to acting freely and dressing ridiculously, dancing along with our giant mascot Nedlam to the marching band’s awardw i n n i n g rendition of Lady Gaga— and maybe throwing in a little “Beat Medford” in for the football team’s sake.
Lesley Ta Reporter
The Blue and Gold December 2010
All Aboard the Polar Express
amilies were excited as the Christmas cheer settled over Malden. Eager-eyed children and their excited parents anxiously waited for the day when it came to board the commuter rail to the North Pole: The Polar Express. For 17 dollars, passengers departed from Malden Station, handing in their golden “tickets” to the conductors before boarding the train. The hour-long ride took them through the scenic routes of the communities of Malden, Reading, and Melrose. The yearly tradition creates a fun filled magical experience with storytelling, cookies, milk, and the adventure of a lifetime. Commuters were welcome to dress in cozy pajamas and slippers as they feasted on delicious snacks and listened to volunteer elves read the widely known Christmas tale, The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg. Passengers were greeted by various characters from elves to the noble Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer, the Cat in the Hat, and Frosty the Snowman. Dora the Explorer, however, canceled her appearance last minute due to a costume malfunction. As they walked up and down the train, the characters would pause frequently to pose for a picture to or give a quick high five to small toddlers. “This is our 17th year doing the Polar Express. We do it as a fundraiser to raise money for our Maternal Child Health Program,” stated Jeff Smith, Vice-President of Development for the Visiting Nurse Association of Boston. “We are the oldest visiting nurse association in the country. It will be our 125th year next year. Our nurses provide home health care to young mothers with prematurely-born children or with any serious illness. We also care for adults, but this fundraiser raises money for children,” he added with a smile. The Malden High School Literary Society provides the volunteers for this grand event every year. Literary Society advisers, English teachers Nierika Nims and Yahaira Marquez, directed all MHS students to their destination. Students arrived at Malden Station in order to board the MBTA orange line to North Station. From there, the helpers unloaded the goods from a van and began to depart into the purple commuter rail waiting for them in lane 9. Armed with tinsel, bags of
English teacher Yahaira Marquez, senior Jensine Ironuma, and senior Debbie Ly decorating the Polar Express. Photo by Lesley Ta. tape, crates of milk, and sugar cookies, the MHS Volunteers loaded the essential items onto the train, splitting the large portions until each car had an equal amount. “We will do three rides today. Kids from Malden High volunteer for each ride. Malden High is the traditional group to decorate the cars. They come early in the morning [before Reading or Melrose] and stay the latest,” Smith stated. To end the ride, children received coloring books provided by the Holiday Inn, and small goodie bags in the shape of Santa Claus, a reindeer, or a snowman containing crayons, candy, and stickers. To top it off, like in the book, The Polar Express, all kids received a silver bell at the end of the ride.
“Food for the body… Nurture for the soul”
Catherine Poirier Copy Editor 00 turkeys later, and it is a Thanksgiving! Every year, the Bread of Life holds its annual Thanksgiving dinner at Malden High School. T h e Bread of Life “is a volunteer-based [organization], currently made up of 500 volunteers from 35 churches, synagogues, high schools, and community organizations,” that is committed to serving those in need of food, stated board president Gary Christenson. Christenson has been president of the Bread of Life since 2008 and volunteered for Volunteers in the cafeteria at MHS the day before Thanksgiving, carving turkeys and preparing side years before. “My interest in the Bread of Life stems dishes.Photos by Catherine Poirier
from their goal to help those less fortunate. Bread of Life serves as a reminder about what life should ultimately be about on a day-to-day basis,” explained Christenson. Volunteers arrived at 4 p.m. the day before Thanksgiving to help set up for the next day’s meals. People were unloading trucks, preparing enormous turkeys in the kitchen, cooking side dishes, making center pieces, and hanging up decorations to make the cafeteria feel cozy. Volunteers ranged from ages five to 65; the diversity in age, Christenson commented, showed “that the Malden community cares when it comes to helping people in need.” Most helpers stayed until at least 7 p.m. that night, making sure that people in need received the best possible meal they could. On Thanksgiving Day, the Bread of Life provided families with over 400 turkeys, and delivered 350 meals to homeless families, and elderly shut-ins, which are elderly people who are not able to receive a meal otherwise. The Ferryway School donated approximately 350 pounds of cooked turkey to the Bread of Life for Thanksgiving, according to 20-year volunteer and sixth grade math teacher Timothy Rufo. He encourages his students to volunteer at Bread of Life as well. “I feel it is important for the students to get involved and see how a small
amount of time and an act of kindness can make a huge difference. I also believe that a lot of today’s youth really want to volunteer and help out; they just need the guidance where they are able to volunteer,” Rufo stated. The volunteer base for Bread of Life is significant to their great success. “I really think by looking at the volunteers, you see that they vary in age, economic class, education, and ethnic background. What you see working in the kitchen is exactly a small model of the city of Malden,” commented Rufo. “It’s really great to see, all these different backgrounds working together to help with an important cause. It helps keep a community strong,” he finished. All of the hard work that these people put in really makes a difference in Malden, making it a better place for many. Thanksgiving is not the only day these people donate their time to the community. Bread of Life hosts free evening dinners four nights a week, has an emergency food pantry, free clothing, and delivers groceries to senior citizens in public housing. According to their website, in 2008 they delivered over 311,000 meals to families in need. Since 1980, Bread of Life has been staying true to their “mission of caring.”
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Kayla Bramante Head of Special Projects
hether one is in an office behind a cubical or carrying tons of plates in your hands serving food to ungrateful people, anyone can relate to the Malden High School Play Production’s performance of Working: The Musical, a production that serves to open the public’s eyes to the hardships of the working class. Junior Daniel Rendon found himself playing vastly varied roles in this production – do you remember the old retired Jewish man who could only do anything to try and keep his life up beat and interesting? Or even the creepy office worker who was so into his computer it looked like any minute longer and his eyes would pop out of his head? How about that Spanish migrant worker everyone felt bad for? All were played by Rendon. “As the cubicle worker I was able to get the audience to laugh with the creepy character. As the Spanish migrant farmer, I was able to get the audience to sympathize with me, and as Joe, I was able to get the audience to laugh at my depressing life,” stated Rendon. “My most memorable line would have to be from Joe’s monologue, ‘I don’t daydream at all; I just think of something and I forget it.’ It
was quite funny and was perfect to my image of what the character was,” Rendon explained. The energetic Dolores was played by senior Olivia Pagliccia. This waitress was seen hitting on her customers and cracking jokes here and there that were not funny to the female customers. The audience thought otherwise, however, as it is was in hysterics over Dolores. Pagliccia’s favorite character in the play was Joe, played by Rendon. “I loved how [Rendon] interpreted him, and I also like that character because he’s the man you see everywhere from sitting having a cup of coffee at Dunkin Donuts to walking down the street,” Pagliccia stated. Sophomore Elizabeth Fitzgerald explained that the play “made [her] open [her] eyes to what the working class was all about and how they felt about different things. [Her] favorite part was the traffic jam scene because not only does it explain how it was back then but also how it is now.” But the audience cannot and will not, forget about the “behind the scenes” technical people who stayed in school for hours on end, beating even the actors in hours. Without them the production would not have been possible. Play Production instructor Sean Walsh stated, “Musicals are a lot of work. Unlike straight plays, you have to place singing, dancing, as well as the technical elements along with the acting, costumes, set design, etc. The challenging part, but also most beneficial, was taking many students who have never had the experience of singing and dancing
and working with them. It is risky to step out of your comfort zone, but everyone did.” Walsh also mentioned that time was of the essence, and that the students gave up literally as much time as they could, including weekends. When asked if he felt the musical had an effect on the audience and people in general, Walsh said, “The atmosphere in the crowd. There was a buzz throughout the audience. The response at times was almost [like that of Junior Varieties] in nature. I even saw some signs, though that went a bit too far. More so, than any show I’ve been involved with at MHS, students came up to me and wanted to know how they can do that -get in the class, be on stage. Yes, it had an effect.” Walsh also said that he loved this musical in particular because everyone in the class had a role, and it was not just a play with a couple of leads. Everyone got their moment to shine on stage. Musicals have been a tradition at MHS, “but not for a long time.” They are “expensive and a huge undertaking.” Walsh would not have even attempted if it were not for the help of Todd Cole and many others. “Until the renovation and the partnerships, [he]felt uneasy about doing a musical and taking it on. I knew that musicals have the potential of unifying a community and bringing a lot of attention to the drama program so [he] wanted to do it right.” “This is a strong, strong class. After the renovations last year and the performance of Metamorphoses with the swimming pool, there was a lot of energy and I think expectations were raised exponentially. The students who have
joined in the class bring that energy and have risen and will continue to rise to the high expectations,” Walsh concluded. Walsh also plans to have a musical once a year to bring back the tradition, but he can not do more than one because they all “need sleep.” The only things the class needs to work on are “diction and volume. But this is [his] lifelong struggle. Oh, and punctuality.” Sophomore Will Lombard, who played Mike Dillard, the iron worker shared, “The musical opened my eyes to all the different jobs because with each scene, it showed a new job and how they contribute and are important to society.” Lombard also stated that his most memorable line was “from [his] song, ‘Fathers and Sons,’ when [he sang], “Now it seems I always knew, why I do the things I do and the thing I never did, Why I work my whole damn life so I can give a better life than the one my dad could give me.” The Play Production’s spring production will be “American Land,” which is about the different cultures that make up America and will be written by the Play Production class itself. All photos by Catherine Poirier. Layout and design by Brittany Foley.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
the beauty of life on a Budget
Reginah Sanyu Head Entertainment Writer
It is no secret that the United States economy is not in great shape. To many teenagers and those who are not interested, incomprehensible Wall Street jargon can be boring. It is unusual to get bored by MSNBC and stock analysts trying their best to explain why most of the graphs depicting the economy are on a downwards slope--as if trying to stay awake in math class was not hard enough. Still, try to resist changing the channel or falling asleep, because there might actually be merit in the economy coverage. Although the economy is not as bad as it was three years ago, it is far from being in good shape. It does not only affect adults who have bills to pay, but younger generations, too. “Candy is more expensive. This makes me feel upset,” senior Jean Messeroux humorously stated. “But prices went up for everything,” he added on a more serious note. Despite the inconvenience of rising prices, today’s youth have learned an important lesson: hard work pays off. “I’m not able to buy as much as I used to. Now, I have to work more in order to have money,” stated senior Baydan Mohamed. This also means that teens have started to think twice when they go shopping. Senior Shannon Howe comments, “When I go shopping, prices of things are really high. I can’t buy everything I want [like] I once [could].” For those who miss their shopping habits like Howe does, hope is still there. Although the economy does not look like it will go back to the way it was four years ago, one can still go shopping without feeling guilty for spending their money. The answer to shoppers’ prayers is the seemingly constant stream of sales that stores have. For many, three years ago, a simple whatever-percent-off sale was not a big deal. Today, consumers live for the sales. Rising prices force shoppers to figure out an alternative way to save money--which is , unarguably, not bad. Sure, those shoes at Urban Outfitters are beautiful but the question remains: are they a necessity? If not, it is time to hold out, count to ten and hope the manager puts that red sale sticker on them--and if holding out is difficult, shopping in different stores is probably the best idea. “I started shopping at thrift stores like The Garment District in Cambridge,” stated senior Samantha Saggese. Saving money and trying to show responsibility does not only have to be done while shopping; money can be saved every day by bringing lunch from home or even hanging out with friends at home instead of going out. “Now my friends and I do things that involve less or no money, like staying in and watching movies instead of going to the theatre every weekend.” Howe proudly declared. With seniors a few months away from entering the real world, one wonders what their futures will be like. Lucky for them, Messeroux can tell them about the future: “It is going to be expensive.” Does this mean that one will have to work two jobs and still go to school? Trying times may call for such measures. This economic situation does not mean that one has to lose his or her fashion sense. There are many different ways to be fashionistas and save at the same time. Recycling clothes is a good idea. Recycling does not strictly mean that you have to turn a shirt into a skirt (although if you can, then go for it) but passing the things we no longer wear to younger siblings. Trading clothes with friends is a great way to recycle clothes. (It also could be a fun sleepover game, too) This economy can be endured by compromising and changing the way money is spent. But for how long will this compromise last? Should people shop endlessly in attempts to boost the market or stop shopping because of the state of our economy? Either way, the economy needs to get better, “because being broke is a joke,” Messeroux humorously concluded. With the holiday season here, it is the perfect time to take advantage of the sales. Hopefully, the economy in the North Pole is better than the one we have here, so that when Santa Claus comes, we will not have to worry so much about finances.
A sketch of a shopper taking advantage of a special sale. Drawing by junior Nina Ho.
D Cl ry ne rs ea
914 Salem Street Malden, MA (781) 322-8098
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Oprah Recommends Dickens
Rebecca Broomstein Reporter
lthough many of us students here at Malden High School may dread the day our English teachers announce the beginning of a new unit surrounding a Charles Dickens novel, Oprah Winfrey begs to differ with such reluctance. After 14 years of leading her famous book club, Winfrey has announced her newest recommendations for 2010, which include Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens, as well as Freedom, by Jonathan Franzen. As students who are required to read these two Dickens’ novels, we are entitled to the immediate reactions of, “Why Dickens?!” As a very influential leader, Winfrey’s book recommendations usually tend to float around more inspirational themes and storylines relative to real-life scenarios. “She usually recommends more contemporary novels, and newer writers to look out for,” explained English teacher Yahaira Marquez. Familiar with Winfrey’s book club, Marquez has noticed the contrast between this year’s recommendations and her recommendations from the previous year. So one wonders: Why has she chosen these two Dickens novels? How are they relevant to
our lives? Upon hearing the news of this recommendation, students may fear that Dickens will be pushed further in the English curriculum. After all, one can only take so much of his dolefully descriptive passages that last pages on end with his picturesque style. This Dickensian style, so to speak, does lose its potency after, say, the tenth page. His tedious take on imagery mutilates the brilliant stories he fills each novel with, making them irritating to read. “Nobody is going to read these books by themselves,” proclaimed sophomore Jonathan Drapinski. Although his opinion on whether teachers will encourage the writer’s work even more is neutral, he has no interest in reading any of Dickens’ work beyond what is taught, as do most students here. Students can already shudder at the thought of opening up a Dickens’ novel before they’ve given any part of it a read, thanks to its lousy reputation at MHS. Before they even open the first page of the novel, a great amount of freshman likely already despise Great Expectations, simply because of its terrible comments they hear around the halls. The same goes for A Tale of Two Cities, which is read during sophomore year. Perhaps, one has to peel back the poor reputation and look further
than the details and dull fluff that we are taught is imagery. “Dickens’ style may be challenging for readers, but his ideas are universal,” states Marquez. It is true that his era may not be considered a la mode, for time has completely changed our lifestyles. Because of this, finding common ground with the characters, relationships, and situations in his stories is difficult, thus making them seemingly less interesting. Still, they are of immeasurable value. In fact, one can likely find plenty of self-relevant ideas and values in A Tale of Two Cities, specifically. One of the ideas Marquez has noticed is “allowing a thought to take over your life,” which is made evident by one of the main characters, Charles Darnay. Another value expressed is hope, which can be seen in the character of Sydney Carton, who spends his life dealing with the unsatisfied desire of marrying Darnay’s wife. Despite the technicalities, one question persists: Will Winfrey’s recommendation spark inspiration in young readers to give the novels a second chance? Maybe then, readers will see that relating to the stories and, in turn, developing interest in them, is possible when reading with a fresh, open mind.
Black Swan is Near Perfect
while at the same time training with a famous and brilliant but morally questionable teacher (Vincent Cassel), Nina struggles with the duality of her two identities, and the battle between good and evil—undoubtedly good reigned in power for most of Nina’s life—begins to take place internally. The audience is invited along for Aronfsky’s symbolic portrayal of the physical strains and the cut-throat competition of the dancing world, as well as Nina’s tragic descent into an obsessive quest for perfection and fame. But what catapulted Black Swan beyond unusually-goodpsychological-thriller into the world of Oscar-contenders was not its admittedly riveting plot or its frighteningly realistic dialogue (courtesy of screenwriter Mark Heyman, who has collaborated with Aronofsky in the past) but its spectacular acting. Portman shines as the stringent White Swan, though her best acting appears when she finally gives in to the Black Swan toward the end (an ending, by the way, that leaves audiences reeling and unable to get the final images of their heads). Mila Kunis, meanwhile, is perfectly ambiguous as the passionate but unrefined ballerina Lily, making the audience as confused about her motives as Portman is. Cassel is sternly creepy as Thomas Leroy, Nina’s teacher and idol, while Hershey is simultaneously loving and controlling as Nina’s mother, Erica. Winona Ryder, famous for such classically dark roles as Susanna Kaysen in Girl, Interrupted and Kim in Edward Scissorhands, is tragically underused, though her character, Beth Macintyre, provides a chilling visual for what Nina can become if she succumbs to the ballet world’s pressures. Almost as riveting as the acting was the score, which is composer Clint Mansell’s fifth collaboration with Aronofsky (with the most notable being the score for 2000’s Requiem for a Dream, parts of which were used in the Lord of the Rings film saga). The score incorporated both original pieces and pieces from Swan Lake, which helps further the director’s brilliant recreation of the classic ballet. Essentially, in a year of disappointments and slow movie weekends, Black Swan is precisely what audiences and cinemas have been waiting for: a film that utilizes its star-studded cast to the best of its abilities without losing spectacular writing and visuals. Though it has barely begun to make back its 17 million dollar budget, Black Swan is set up for box office gold after Oscar nominations are released in February, when without a doubt, it will receive quite a few nods from the Academy. Black Swan released nation wide on December 22.
Natalie Portman as Nina Sayers in one of many scenes depicting the torn nature of her internal state. Nidale Zouhir Co-Editor-in-Chief João Nascimento Co-Editor-in-Chief ly dedicated ballerina on the verge of being cast as the Swan Queen, the multi-faceted lead role in a new adaptation of the classic Russian ballet piece Swan Lake. This role, however, requires the performer to not only be serene and innocent as the White Swan, but also to be able to metamorphose into the Black Swan, the dark-natured, conniving doppelganger of the White Swan. Living with her controlling and obsessive mother (Barbara Hershey)
lack Swan is the type of film that any moviegoer wishes to see again as soon as the credits begin to roll: the perfect combination of Clint Mansell’s score, a stellar cast, headed by Natalie Portman’s Oscarworthy performance, and Darren Aronofsky’s brilliant directing, all work together in perfect synchrony to the simultaneous pleasure, shock, and horror of the audience. The movie chronicles the story of Nina Sayers, a naïve and extreme-
The Blue and Gold December 2010
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The Blue and Gold December 2010
Malden Squashes Medford in Thanksgiving Game
Haley DeFilippis Copy Editor Before the annual Thanksgiving Day game began on Thursday Nov. 25, 2010, the senior football players and cheerleaders were accompanied onto the field by their families and coaches. It was an emotional moment for all, as flowers and hugs were exchanged between the teary eyed seniors and their loved ones for their last home game of their high school careers. Fortunately, Malden High School was able to defeat their long-time rival, Medford High School, with a score of a whopping 29 to 0, ending their season with a record of 5 - 5. To start off the first quarter, junior captain Witchie Exilhomme kicked off the ball to the Mustangs, who returned the ball to their own 36-yard line. However, after a failed series by Medford, they were forced to punt on a fourth down to senior
Brittany McFeeley Head Copy Editor
Ahove: Medford football team gangs up on Malden football team. Bottom left: Freshman Stivia Demitri cheering at the Thanksgiving game. Photos by Brittany McFeeley and Haley DeFilippis. MHS came out strong in the third quarter. The Mustangs kicked off the ball, but it was a short kick, recovered by Exilhomme. After a quick penalty putting them at the 50 yard line, MHS recovered with a touchdown by Dunn, and with an extra point by St. Jean, the score became 14 to 0. When it was Medford’s turn to drive down the field, they were stopped short by many false starts and many great tackles made by junior Dimas Bardales, Exilhomme, and freshman Matt Delaney. MHS was able to turn the ball over when Exilhomme intercepted a deflected pass, thrown by the Medford quarterback. As MHS drove down the field, Valley kept the snap and ran the ball in for another MHS touchdown. Instead of going for the extra point, Valley followed through for a successful two-point conversion pass to Dunn, raising the score to 22 to 0. The fourth quarter also started off strong when senior Kensley Metellus broke through numerous tackles for the fourth MHS touchdown, bringing the score even higher, to 29-0. With opportunities to spare, coach Joe Pappagallo made Dunn the quarter back for the final moments of the game. As the players were leaving the locker room, some for the last time, many were saddened despite their epic win. Senior Vernon Sainvil was “sad” that this would be his last game, but later mentioned he “had fun with [his] boys.” Bardales has high hopes for the upcoming season, simply encouraging everyone to “commit themselves” and that “[they will] see where [they] take it from there.” To sum up the season, Samano stated that the members of the team “started as individuals [and] ended as a family.”
captain Frankie Dunn. After driving down the field with many completions to Dunn and junior Austin Teal, MHS was able to get deep into the Mustangs red zone. A touchdown was completed by senior captain Aaron Samano after a handoff by senior Kevin Valley, sending the crowd wild. This was Samano’s first touchdown in his high school career, and this is one more touchdown than most linemen ever have. After the intense game, with great relief, Samano said that scoring the touchdown was “great,” and “after four years of blocking, I was finally able to run the ball.” After a few fumbles, incomplete passes, and penalties from both teams, MHS was unable to score in the second quarter of the game, ending the first half of the game with the same score of 7 to 0. However,
GBL Drops Down a Division
Megan Kelly Copy Editor
he five cities of the Greater Boston League, Malden, Medford, Somerville, Cambridge and Everett, have made the heavy decision of dropping the five high school football teams down from division 1 to 1A. The Athletic Directors--John Dibiaso (Everett), Bob Maloney (Medford), Maryanne Cappello (Cambridge), Nicole Viele (Somerville) and Dan Keefe (Malden)--of each city voted on the decision to drop down, with Dibiaso and Maloney choosing to stay at division 1, while Keefe, Viele and Cappello agreed on dropping down to division 1A. But what is the difference between 1 and 1A besides the extra letter? It’s the numbers. Keefe stated that football is, essentially, “a numbers game.” Division 1 is for high schools that have a male enrollment of 1300, creating a wider number of students to recruit onto the team and to ensure that the school has a larger team. Meanwhile, schools in 1A have an enrollment of 800 males, making the number of players smaller. Keefe confirmed the technicalities of the contrast, explaining that, “there’s really no difference between 1 and 1A; it all is about the size of schools.” While technically only 11 players are needed to create a football team, having more team members allows for players to be given a rest in between their plays. continued on page 21
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Powder Puff Girls
Crew Faces Budget Cuts
Sharon Lee Head of Photography udget cuts have recently been bestowed upon the Malden High School Athletic Department, specifically the crew team. With winter just around the corner, the crew team is taking advantage of the off season to fundraise as much as possible before pre-season training commences. According to the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA), crew is not considered a varsity sport. Although it has not been considered one on the state level, MHS has managed to keep it alive as a club unlike many high schools in neighboring towns; towns like Everett, which never had a crew team at all; Somerville, which removed its crew team two years ago; and Medford which removed its crew team this past year. To satisfy the new budget, Athletic Director Dan Keefe had to decide where the cuts would come from and was left in a situation he described as “[either] cutting a MIAA sanctioned sport or a club.” In previous years, although it was technically categorized as a club, the crew team still received some funding from the Athletic Department to help pay for coaching stipends and for two buses each season, funds that were only enough to cover a portion of how much they needed in total to fund other necessities as well. Typically the team is faced with the daunting task of raising a substantial amount of money, and now with the budget completely terminated, the team will be given an even larger amount of money to earn in order to compete. Each season, the crew team faces numerous forms of expenses such as $350 to register the team with the U.S. Rowing Organization in order to participate in competitions, $3000 towards equipment rental for just one season, $300 to enter three boats for a regular race, and $50 for each person rowing in a boat at the Head of the Charles competition. To raise enough money to support all their financial needs, the team constantly fundraises by selling candy year round as well as hosting events, including wrapping Christmas gifts at Borders in downtown Boston, selling flowers in the springtime, raffling Red Sox tickets, and having “bowl-a-thons” and “urge-a-thons” in which crew team members ask people for pledges that will go towards their funds. Four year member and senior captain Harout Khodaverdian said concerning the budget cut that he was “not surprised [because funding] had been off and on between the last couple of years [so it had been] expected.” However, this situation may cost the crew team a successful future; potential crew team members often wonder if crew can be counted in the program in which playing two sports waives a year of gym and can one receive a varsity credit for it. With the answer for both questions a resounding no, this budget cut will “definitely not make the team larger,” as stated by sophomore Dan McClenthan, a novice crew member who will be joining the varsity team this spring. The crew team also must worry about financing and supporting the team rather than just its performance. By spending more time on fundraisers and trying to earn more money, a lot of time is taken away from the students and not just in their weekday practices or weekend races but also when they have to sell at least 20 bags of candy per season.
Seniors Jennifer Cuartas Cano, Cynthia Antenor, Vanesha Darla, and Kerriann Shuamn doing warmup laps. Photo by Cristina Peters. Alfonse Femino Head Sports Writer
ntense, fast-paced, thrilling; these are all words that can be used to describe the game that took place on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2010. Do not be fooled, that is no typo. It was not the MaldenMedford Rivalry football game that attracted football fans that afternoon, but the annual Senior vs. Junior girls football game. While the festivities of the day started with walking from hall to hall to see all of the fun decorations, and then were followed with the pep rally, the real fun started at McDonald Stadium at 12:00 p.m. There was a feeling of electricity in the air as the junior girls and the senior girls took the field for warm-ups and a pre-practice runthrough. Members of both teams exchanged threatening looks and imitating gestures before there was even a single play. Come game time, there was a packed crowd of students, faculty members, and alumni ready to watch the senior and junior girls battle it out. The game started off with a bang as the juniors, coached by Austin Teal and Witchie ValenceExilhomme, halted the charging seniors on two straight plays until a member of the junior team picked off a pass thrown by senior quarterback Kyriah Marcelin. The juniors immediately established their presence on the field. Led by junior quarterback Jessica Cotto, they made a forceful statement that they had shown up to play, and that it was going to be a long day for the senior defense and for the senior coaching staff of Aaron Samano, Kevin Valley, and Frankie Dunn, all of whom would have to make adjustments quickly if they were going to stay in the game. “Considering there was not much practice time, we pulled together,” stated junior wide receiver and The Blue and Gold staff member Brittany McFeeley on behalf of the junior defense. The senior defense did not let the juniors’ high-powered offense discourage them, though. The defense stepped up their game in a matter of seconds, stopping the quarterback-reciever combination of Cotto and McFeeley on several occasions, until an interception by senior Renee Santo turned the ball over, allowing the senior offense to take over. From then on, the two teams were in a virtual shootout. The second quarter saw its share of long
offensive drives followed by interceptions and fumble recoveries, leading the teams into halftime with a deadlock tie of 0-0. Both the seniors and the juniors came out in the third quarter with guns a’ blazing. The senior team started off the second half with a series of short gains, until senior running back Jessica Lopez broke through the junior defense, juking and dodging 70 yards to the end zone for the first score of the game, putting the seniors up 6-0. The huge touchdown run instilled a wave of refreshment into the senior team, as their defense became unstoppable throughout the third and most of the fourth quarters, with great plays from Vanesha Darla and Cera Nolan. The offensive line also stepped up big time for the seniors. Some members of the line, including center Kisla Rami and guards Cassandra Ulwick and Jasmine Roach, were given the daunting task of stopping a vicious defensive line led by junior Kiara Amos, but the seniors played with grit and determination throughout the entire game, allowing quarterback Marcelin enough time to connect with her favorite target, Santo, as well as with runningbacks including Kerri Shuman and Mandy Liao on several occasions. “We played well, fair, and stuck to the rules,” stated Senior Tenzin Kunsang, who also made some important stops from her noseguard position. The intensity of the game seemed to build with every play in the second half. Although the seniors were dominating from the gates, the juniors eventually struck back with an incredible hidden-ball trick play that ended with an unnoticed Cotto sprinting 60 yards downfield to tie the game at 6-6. The battle continued for several more possessions, causing the suspenseful game to come down to one final, nail-biting play. With only ten seconds left, the seniors found themselves on the 5-yard line in a must-score situation. Marcelin took the snap from Rami, turned, faked one way, and handed the ball off to an undiscovered Lopez, who charged into the end zone to score the winning touchdown. After the game, typical MHS good-sportsmanship was present, as girls and coaches from both teams shook hands and said their “good games,” closing the chapter on another spectacular annual Powder Puff football game.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
GBL division drop, continued from page 19 Would Everett’s win at the high school Superbowl on Dec. 4, not say something about numbers having to affect a teams ability? Agreeing with Keefe, Cappello stated, “Our enrollment has gone done over the past couple of years, and we felt that it was important that we move down to a division that we would compete better in. ” Maybe one team in the GBLs can prove that a size 1A school could go against a larger school and win, but, as explained further by Keefe, the drop will level the playing field, allowing the four other teams to showcase their skills in the game. The drop was not made in doubt of the GBL’s skill in the game of football, but rather because the three ADs who voted for the change wanted their teams going against other schools their size. Keefe compared the differences in GBL team sizes to those of nearby colleges, “Does Framingham State want to
Retaining Their Title
Jacob Martino Reporter
he Malden High School boys track team look to repeat what they achieved last year, which was an undefeated season and a chance to win the state title. Despite many key players back for their senior year, the team also lost a few impact players to other sports in the high school. For instance, junior Witchie Exilhomme who was a huge part of the team last year, left track to go try out for the school basketball team and others have done the same. However the team is not very concerned as of right now. Cocaptain David Germain said, “Last year we had monsters on the team. We had Herbens [Antenor], [David] Console, and [Brendan Provitola]. Replacing them is going to be hard but it just motivates everyone else to do better.” He also added, “We just keep adding more and more players to the team. So, if anyone wants to win something tell them to join the track team.” With English teacher David Londino back again as coach, the team is ready to blow away the competition. If he is able to win the Greater Boston League title this season, he will have coached a
conference winning cross country team and track team. Co-captain Andrew Terenzi, who is arguably one of the fastest student athletes at MHS, is aiming to break the state record for the fastest time in sprints. He and Germain look to run the table in indoor track this season. “I have no doubt in my mind that well will go undefeated again this year,” Germain confidently stated. If they are able to accomplish that goal, Germain and others on the team will have even a better opportunity to go on to run track in college. “That is my main goal, I would love to run track on Senior captain David Germain hurdling at a college team,” Germain practice. Photo by Sharon Lee. commented. He has already been this year is going to be the Somercontacted by multiple schools such ville and Cambridge track teams. as Worcester State College, Univer- They had tied with Somerville last sity of Massachusetts Amherst, and year in indoor, making Malden Providence College. When asked if co-champions with Somerville in football helped him in track at all, the GBL. “Both Cambridge and Germain commented, “It gave me Somerville are always good,” an edge because I was already in Germain stated. “Last year we better shape than most of the other just beat Cambridge in the final members. I almost felt faster than race of the meet so it is going to be everyone else at first.” another tough season.” The team’s biggest competition
Racing to the Top
two losses this year, and they hope to continue their success into the indoor season and through the outdoor season as well. Cross country is “strictly distance running”, so “it is expected that the successes from the cross country season should carry over,” Londino explained. With a record of 2-2 in last year’s girls indoor track season, the team is only competing in four meets against that will make or break their road to success to the Greater Boston League Championship. “With the numbers and talent we have, we’re hoping to compete with teams like Somerville and Cambridge and be one of the GBL’s top teams”, Londino praised. The excessive amount of distance the cross country runners cover allows Portia Johnson. The rest of the team’s talent is young, so we’re in good shape.” The team has a great number of newcomers joining this year, making this year’s team “the biggest we’ve had in over a decade,” Londino continued. In order to accomplish their goals this season, the team plans on having their “experienced upperclassmen lead the way”, allowing them to also “play a big part in the development of [their] freshman athletes.” In some situations the large amount of newcomers could hold the team back from their full potential, but to many of the veterans this does not seem to be an issue. “With all of the newcomers I think it will make the team very strong especially with the input of their running skills,” Dowdie reveals. The team also “has a number of talented seniors,” Londino states, “so this is the year to see what they can do.” Although the team will “be losing some really great runners and friends”, the girls are confident that they will continue to accomplish their goals and remain strong. “They will definitely be missed,” Dowdie finished, “but even when they leave, we will still have a strong team.”
“This tradition of excellence far outweighs the enrollment factor.”
play against BC?” Though Dibiaso stated that the size of teams did not matter, what with the exceptional history the GBLs has had since it was first created in the 1890’s, elaborating that “during this period, the GBL has won more football championships than any other league.... [the] GBL has also won the most Division One Superbowls since the current playoff system began ten years ago (6).” Dibiaso also does not see any of the teams struggling to keep up with their competition, “If the GBL had struggled to compete in the recent playoffs, then of course I could understand the rationale but we have not.” He added that to him, the GBL’s “tradition of excellence far outweighs the enrollment factor.” Though the decision to drop down is of pure intentions, the potential longterm effects of the switch cannot be ignored. Everett, a powerhouse in the GBLs for the past several years, now has to work harder to be apart of the Massachusetts high school playoffs, as do the other four schools in the coming years, should their teams start to improve enough that they might qualify. Dibiaso said in a final statement that numbers should not be the sole reason standards drop, and that: “I feel this tradition of excellence far outweighs the enrollment factor....I don’t see any administrators complaining that academic standards should be lowered, or that MCAS scores should be allowed to drop.”
Senior Jessica Vo running in the one mile event. Photo by Lauren Benoit. Amalia Quesada Nylen Reporter
ue to previous success in this year’s cross country season, the girls’ indoor track team is anticipating an accomplished season. “Expectations for the distance team will be higher then they were in previous years,” stated head coach David Londino. The girls cross country team had a record of two wins and
them to develop “a great mileage base” to prepare for the indoor season, now focusing their attention on “speed development”. “I’d really like the girls to become GBL champs as well as boys”, stated sophomore Haley Dowdie. The team lost many essential senior members to the team last year, such as “Thanh Nugyen, a top shot putter,” Londino stated, “but we have three states caliber girls in Vanesha Darla, Alex Mathieu, and
The Blue and Gold December 2010
Swim Team Seeks Depth
Natalie Fallano Copy Editor
ast season ended with disappointment for Malden High School’s Swim Team, being the first year in ten years that they did not win the Greater Boston League Championship. This year’s tricaptains, seniors Samantha Saggese, Karl Denis, and The Blue and Gold staff member Kaela Bryan, have new goals and high expectations for the upcoming season. Saggese stated, “I want everyone to improve their times and try [their] best to win GBLs. It’s a foundation year.” Unlike last year, when the team started off the year losing a tremendous amount of seniors, the exact opposite occurred, as this season more than half the team are seniors. Denis exclaimed, “We’re huge this year. So many people have joined, including several freshmen who have experience and are making good progress everyday.” Freshmen and new additions to the team, Phillip West and Bestine Wong, have prior swim experience; Cong swam for the Melrose YMCA, and West swam for the Mystic Valley Regional Charter School Swim Club. The team is looking forward to
facing Somerville the most. Saggese explained, “Everyone looks forward to Somerville because we’re an even match up.” However, before they face Somerville, they had to swim against their bitter rivals, Cambridge, who according to Denis, “are a tough crew.” Although Cambridge is the their most talented opponent, MHS still remained confident. “We go back and forth. We beat them half of the time and lose to them half of the time. We’re not exactly on friendly terms with them, either. There’s a lot of tension from both sides,” explained Saggese. The team was confident about their chances of beating Cambridge after a former teammate decided to rejoin the team. Senior Hao Luong, who left the team after his freshman year due to personal commitments, was able to rejoin on under special conditions by head coach Paul DeVincentis. Before the meet, Bryan commented excitingly, “Now I know we will beat Cambridge. [Luong] has the potential to be a state champion. Cambridge knows how good he is, and will be surprised to see him at our first meet.” However, the team was unsuccessful in their hopes of beating Cambridge, swimming extremely hard in the 95-75 loss. Though the
Junior Eddie Lee swims the backstroke across the Malden High School pool. Photo by Sharon Lee. team did not get the win, there were some stand out individual performances from Cong, Bryan, and senior Jackie Tran. Head coach Paul DeVincentis stated that Cambridge’s team had more “depth.” Malden is looking forward to their next home meet on Wednesday Dec. 15, 2010. DiVincentis exclaimed “he wouldn’t want to be Somerville right now,” confident about his team’s upcoming match. The team is also experiencing some changes in coaching. Long time assistant coach John Parcellin retired and was replaced by Jessica Beason who helped the team last year, but not as an official instructor. As successful as the team has been in the past, they have not lost their passion for the sport. Denis expressed, “I want to win, but to also have fun this season. It’s my last year and I want to remember it.”
Wrestling Team Not Ready to Tap Out
Joel Stevenson Reporter
ith a new season, come new strategies. As all other sports, Malden High School’s wrestling teams number one strategy this year is to work hard at what they are doing, having fun, and above all win, a feat that is going to take much time and effort due to 13 graduating wrestlers, and a plethora of underclassmen. Being a key aspect of the wrestling team for multiple years, senior Andy Chao was chosen as the team’s captain. Chao had been wrestling for his whole high school career; he is hoping that the team does as well as they did last year. At the current time, the crunch for new as well as returning members to work hard and learn new moves. As Chao exclaims his anticipation of how everything is going, he says “I am a little nervous, it is going to be a challenge, lot to do in a week.” The team as a whole is a bit nervous about the first meet, but they feel that they have a solid team this year. As of late, the team is practicing around the clock. Practicing new moves, as well as keeping their weight at class level. They are doing all they can to make up for the little time between meets, as well as assigning varsity spots. With the first tri-meet on Dec. 11 against Billerica High School,
Minutemen Tech, and Shawsheen Regional Technical High. The team is going to have to practice hard if they want to put themselves in the position to be successful. As stated by Coach Jeremiah Smith, “I am a little nervous; it is going to be a challenge, we have a lot to do in a week, but I am positive we can pull it off.” The team is a bit nervous for the outcome of their first match, but they are expecting to pick up the slack, if the slack falls. “Shawsheen is tough, but we will pull out a win in the end, even though we do not have as many weight classes, were doing pretty good with what we have” stated junior Brendon Walsh. Varsity spots are determined not only by talent, but also by 14 different weight classes. One conflict that arises is that not all the spots can be filled due to the difference in weight, as stated by junior Eddie Fisher, “we’re going be at a disadvantage because we aren’t able to fill all of the weight classes.” This may hurt the team, but the team is not going to let this affect them, as they are working hard to overcome any obstacle in their way. Some new members that have joined the wrestling team include junior Robert Stalker, as well as junior Eddie Fisher. They are working hard to learn the moves, and lead the team to victory. When asked why they chose wrestling they all said the same feelings. They loved contact
sports a n d have heard s t o ries, s o they wanted to be a part of the a c tion. A s state d by senior Warren Sharpp, “[We] love the sport, it is a fair sport, there are no favorites, and instead you wrestle for your spot.” This year, the team received a pleasant unexpected surprise in senior Shawn Castro. Castro, who recently transferred from Lowell High School, had been introduced to wrestling while living in his hometown of Lowell. Rewinding back to Castro’s in his freshman year, he exclaims, “This year he is looking forward to having a huge impact on Malden’s team and hopefully lead them to victory. “I have been wrestling for four years now. I first started freshmen year looking for a sport to stay in shape for football and I fell in love with the sport
Seniors Andy Chao and Christian Rizzo practicing wrestling techniques.. Photo by Sharon Lee. and never looked back. I am hoping to help build the new young Malden team and lead them to a hard fought winning season.” With the addition of a large amount of underclassmen, specifically freshman, not to mention some new additions of talented upperclassmen, the team expects to build and develop talent, and pave the way towards having a wrecking crew of a wrestling team in the future. More importantly, however, the team looks forward to building character in each one of its members, and have some fun doing it.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
EXPERIENCE Helps MHS GYMNASTICS
Joshua Kummins Copy Editor
ith the winter season already in full swing, the Malden High School gymnastics team is looking to have a strong start. According to head coach Katie Bowdridge, the team is ready for what could be a very successful season. The team will be led by cocaptains, junior Alana Casey and Stephanie Dervishian, a senior at Northeast Metro-Tech in Wakefield. Casey is returning as a level nine gymnast, due to her strong offseason training. The team helps run a program in conjunction with the Partnership for Community Schools in Malden (PCSM), therefore the team will have more new talent to work with this season. Bowdridge adds that this helps the team as they already have “basic gymnastics knowledge,” which is different than previous seasons when many members had little or no experience. One young member is freshman Justine Rose, who is a level seven gymnast and a six-year member of the Melrose YMCA team. Rose hopes that she can become a valuable member of the team, because of her experience, although she new to the MHS team. She expects to work hard and have fun as she has had a positive experience, despite spend-
Shooting for a Better Season
Haley DeFilippis Copy Editor alden H i g h School’s girl’s basketball team is looking forward to a turn around this year, improving off of last year’s record. Even though the team does not have the numbers, one thing remains in the MHS girls’ basketball program, which is heart, and the desire to win. Every player involved with girls basketball, from the third line on the Junior Varsity team to the fourth year starters, share the same goal; win a Greater Boston League title, and qualify for the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association state tournament. Along with
ing less than a month with the team to this point. Bowdridge expects Casey and Rose to be the team’s best “all-around gymnasts.” In gymnastics, there are ten different skill levels and the higher one moves up, the more advanced they are. Casey feels that the team has lost a lot of competing members, but with hard work, the team could challenge to win the Greater Boston League championship. “We have a great group of kids who have shown that they are willing to work and want to win,” Casey said. “Even though our team is about having fun, we also push that people should be working hard to meet their personal [and team] goals.” As captain, she feels that their biggest strength is teamwork and that “[the team doesn’t] just think of each other as teammates or friends, [but] as a family.” Casey emphasizes the true meaning of team and tries to push other teammates to their fullest potential. She feels that the newest members show a lot of potential and all the members of the team take the sport very seriously. Rose hopes to “place high individually while helping [the] team’s overall score.” This could be a challenge, be-
cause she is used to working individually with the Melrose YMCA team. She is “happy to be part of such a supportive team that [has] the same love for the sport.” The team will be hurt due to their lack of equipment and a spring floor for practice and competitions. “Our bars are very old and don’t adjust,” Bowdridge said. “[This] makes it difficult to learn new skills that require more room.” Malden is the only team in the GBL without Junior Justin Pham preparing for dismount. Photo by a spring floor, Lauren Benoit. so the tumbling and jumping hurt. The spring floor The team expects to overcome makes tumbling better, because it the obstacles that are beyond their causes less stress on the body and control and have a successful season “work more difficult tumbling in the GBL. passes.”
Senior Samantha Bonvie defending against senior Melisa Cadet in a Malden High School girls basketball scrimmage. Sophomore Lisa DeLacey shoots. Photos by Haley DeFilippis.
new additions to the team this year, Wayne Bartolucci has taken over coaching. Bartolucci started right away in pushing the girls in practices and scrimmages in order to have a shot at the GBL title. Tri-captain and senior Samantha Bonvie stated “Coach is always positive, which has helped the whole team adopt that kind of attitude.” Also tri-captain and senior Fillete Lovaincy noted how “he comes to practices dressed to play and interact with us.” With Bartolucci on the court with the players, he teaches techniques and skills by showing and “getting into the game.” As mentioned earlier, the team has the goal of winning the GBL title and then the state tournament; however, there are some goals on a more personal level that some of the girls would love to accomplish. Malden is competing in the competitive GBL, with the always strong Medford looking as strong as ever, while Cambridge has a few superstar type players. To add to the pressure, the girls will have a grueling non-league schedule. There is one non-league foe that lingers on the schedule every season. Malden is scheduled to play Billerica Memorial High School during the Christmas Tournament. “I want to beat Billerica because we haven’t in the four years
that I have been here,” stated Bonvie on one of her main goals, showing the teams determination to redeem themselves. “Billerica has been good in the past, but they recently graduated some of their top players,” added Bonvie. With an entirely new program set up this season, determination and commitment have come into focus. The additions of new plays are “helpful” according to Lovaincy, and will be successful if all of the players know and execute them well. During the 2007 season, MHS came extremely close to winning the GBL title. With hard work ethics established through the years and with the three senior captains Francesca Richardson, Bonvie, and Lovaincy leading the team through good example, this year is expected to be the season when the girls grasp the GBL title. The Christmas Tournament dates are scheduled for Dec. 27, 2010 and Dec. 28, 2010 at home in the Finn Gym. The first dual meet is scheduled for Dec. 30, 2010 at home versus Salem High School.
The Blue and Gold December 2010
new Gym, New Season
the course of the season. Donovan, co-captain for the team, states that this year’s team is a completely new team, due to the fact that there are a lot of new faces. Without Velmont, the team will be able to establish a winning season, as long as the goals are met. Donovan stated that where he goes and what he does for college will depend on this season’s outcome. Donovan has his eye on Cambridge University, along with some other schools for college. It all depends on how this year turns out for him. He commented on what Nally stated about leadership and he said, “I agree, me and Teddy need to step up for it to be a good season.” These are strong words from a determined being. Francois, the other cocaptain, says that this year there is a lot of experience in the team. There are members on the team that have been on varsity for 3+ years and this year, the young talent is tremendous as well. After this year, Francois stated that if he goes to college for basketball, he will try to get into Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts; otherwise he is undecided. This year, the team is looking out for Cambridge Ringe and Latin High School, because “they are the power house this season.” Usually the team focuses on the game against Everett but the new Cambridge team is going to be a game the team will be preparing for as well as GBLs, for most of the season. The Malden-Everett rivalry is not as serious in basketball as it is in football but the game is one of the most important games of the season. The team had its first scrimmage/game (in a scrimmage, each half is a game) on Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2010 against Lynn Classical. It was a pretty even game although many Lynn Classical players have been on the cover of ESPN Rise Magazine, a prestigious honor for a high school athlete. MHS was ready for Lynn Classical and the results were MHS won one half and Lynn won the other. Facing tough teams, such as Lynn, Cambridge, and Everett, will make the team stronger, and the Lynn scrimmage certainly gave MHS a good head start to a successful season.
Alexander Gennigiorgis Head of Business
he Malden High School boys’ basketball team is seeking Greater Boston League qualification, which will be a challenging goal to achieve since the team lost many key players due to graduation, and one of MHS’s best players, Robinson Velmont, due to his recent transfer to a prep school. Head coach Don Nally set high goals for the team including GBL qualification and improvement. Improvement is a number one priority because along with improvement comes GBL qualification and possibly a GBL title. Nally states that seniors Teddy Francois and Ryan Donovan, both on varsity for multiple years, have what it takes to pick up the team and lead it to success. As a coach, Nally will make sure the team focuses on practicing and developing a high level of team chemistry so that on the court, the team will be unstoppable. All of these set goals will be achieved over
From top to bottom left to right: Senior captain Ryan Donovan preparing to shoot the ball for a 3 pointer. Sophomore Rodney Morton dribbling the ball to their offensive end in the scrimmage agaisnt Lynn Classical. Junior Hiago Desena trying to fake out a player on the oppsing team. Senior Matt Howe, Donovan, senior captain Teddy Francois, and junior Witchie Exilhomme playing great offense. Exilhomme about to take a foul. Morton running down the court as Exilhomme looks for an open player. Photos by Sharon Lee and Reginah Sanyu.
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