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April 2013

Odom Sam: Then and Now

I do not know if I’m the only one, but I abhor horror movies. Horror movies interest and grab my attention because of the anticipation that the whole idea is based on. I feel drawn to them, but then I quickly regret the decision that I stayed and watched the whole movie. Since technology has advanced greatly in the industry of entertainment, all the graphics seem so real. The vivid images of the gory scenes or the sounds of the screams always replay in my mind. The worst kind of horror movie, are ones that are about exorcists and hauntings. In my culture we believe in spirits and how the spirits of our loved ones watch over us, so call me superstitious, but I tend to believe in the unexplainable. I recall a time when I was about seven years old. My family and I visited my grandparents’ house for a little family get together. While we were all in the living room watching TV, my grandfather put in a new movie that he rented which was called “The Grudge” As a small child I did not pay much attention to the TV because of my inability to focus. I was always running around and jumping on the couch and playing with my Power Rangers. Time passed and while I took a break of defeating the all-time enemy of the red ranger—I looked up at the TV. There I saw bluish, grey women with dark and dirty short hair. Her... Read more →


As I sat at my kitchen table, eating breakfast on a beautiful Sunday morning, my mind drifted to a certain topic. This was a topic I hadn’t been seriously thinking about, but as I approached the idea, I really wanted to sort it out. The topic is which language I will be taking in high school. As I think about it, Deerfield Academy (where I am going next year), offers many different languages. I have certainly narrowed the topic to a few choices. These languages are: Mandarin, Arabic, and Spanish. I have taken Latin since sixth grade and I haven’t enjoyed it as much as I initially anticipated I would. It has been hard for me to absorb a lot of the material and it has stressed me out knowing that I can’t really use this language in the real world. Knowing this, I know that even if I took Latin in high school, it wouldn’t help me out at all. I would be placed into Latin I and have to start all over. I have asked my sister, who also attends Deerfield Academy, what her friends take and what they think about it. She told me she has friends who take all of them. She takes Spanish and loves it, but she has friends who take Mandarin who enjoy it, but always talk about how hard it is. When asking Mrs. Hernandez-Skayne, a Spanish teacher at my school, what language I should pursue, she said Arabic. She talked about... Read more →


Two thought-provoking situations--What is the correct choice? Here is the situation: You are leaning against a street light in San Francisco when you observe a trolley cascading uncontrollably downhill. It has escaped its track and is on target to collide with five people standing in its way. These five people do not notice the trolley and would almost certaintly be killed if it remained on the current trajectory. At this point you discover a switch above your head on the lamp post with a sign above it that says this, "if pulled, trolley will alter its current direction." If at this time you were to pull the switch the trolley would hit one person who also would not see it coming. Either way someone will die. Should you act and pull the switch saving five people but kill another, or should you do nothing and witness five people killed? Similar situation with a new twist: Now you are on a bridge and below you are train tracks. A train is speeding down its track without slowing and will not be able to if there is an obstruction. You spy five people not far in front of it and see that they can not act--they are completely trapped in front of the train. Next to you, looking over the bridge as well, is a fat man. If you were to pick him up and physically throw him in front of the train, you would save the five people and kill the... Read more →


The question of "If you could have any superpower, what would it be?" is becoming commonly asked, and I even saw it on a secondary school application. I was thinking about it last night when I couldn't fall asleep, and I came up with the superpower of my choice. I would want to be able to go back in time. Now I may not be able to save the universe with super strength like Superman, but it would be interestingto be able to see the world a different way. Most people would want to go back to the times of dinosaurs and cavemen, or early civilization, but I would rather stay closer in the past. I would go back to the 60's, 70's, 80's, and 90's. I mostly would want to see the change in culture in everyday life. The music that was popular then is now making a comeback on the radio, and I want to hear that music when it was popular. And not to forget that Michael Jackson was around. Cars, clothes, and accessories that are from this time frame are now considered "vintage" and everyone wants them. Wouldn't it be interesting to have all these things in everyday life? To walk down the street and see old Chevy's and Dodge muscle cars that wouldn't turn heads. I think this would be fascinating. If I could take a trip to anywhere back in time, I wouldn't need to go far to see what a change America has... Read more →


I have never written anything about the summer camp I go to every summer, Birch Rock Camp, for two reasons: Firs, because I have seen many people write things about their summer camps and the writing always came out cheesy and they are all so similar, but I felt that Birch Rock deserved more than that half effort piece of writing. The second reason is because I could never find the words to fully describe Birch Rock. It is nothing short of the best community I have ever been a part of and it is truly my second home. It the only place where I have ever played my guitar and sung in front of others, where I have fully expressed my religious beliefs to other people, and where a freshmen in college told me that I was the closest thing that he had to a brother. For a 15 year old kid who is constantly surrounded by his sister, it was one of, if not the best thing, that anyone has ever told me. Birch Rock is better than a sunset. When I say sunset I’m talking about that cliché moment in a movie where you see a person staring at a sunset and they look completely happy. When I say that Birch Rock is better than a sunset, I mean that when I am at Birch Rock I feel better than what that person must feel like in the movie, and at Birch Rock I have seen way... Read more →


Leo Saraceno: Photography

Photography. Some days I get inspired to go out with my camera and just take pictures. Sometimes I won't even get up from my chair, just take pictures sitting. Although other times I feel the need to longboard around Acton to fulfill my artistic appetite. I board around looking for that shot, that shot that just looks simply awesome. This shot is usually found outdoors, so outdoors is where I go. The outdoors gives a natural feel that the objects indoors do not. When you take a picture of something that only exists in modern technology it often feels largely uncreative. Most things indoors are artificial which makes it difficult to take a shot that feels natural and creative. This is not too delude to the fact that a times shots with modern object are the most creative. It just seems to take away from that special feel that is given from a shot in the untamed nature. I am not by any stretch a true nature photographer. If you look at my photos on my Fliker (a photo sharing website) then you will see that most of my pictures are of modern objects. I just have caught a glimpse of the raw, but yet simple awesome aspects of nature through photography. I feel lucky that I can feel the pulse of it. At times while I'm attempting to capture it within a simple shutter and lens. I feel the need to look closer, but yet also step back an... Read more →


An event that changed my way of thinking was the NOLS program that I did last summer. NOLS stands for National Outdoor Leadership School, there are over twenty different courses that range in both length and activity. The course I did was a 30 day backpacking trip in the Big Horn Mountain Range in Wyoming. Going into the course I was very apprehensive because I didn't know what to expect from the course, the kids on it and what would be expected of me both physically and mentally. Although I have spent a lot of time camping and hiking outdoors with my family and am used to working with others, I had never carried a 50 pound pack for thirty days with a group of strangers. I made friends quickly, however, I was lacking confidence in my ability to carry a pack that was half my weight for over 130 miles. I thought that everyone would be bigger and stronger and more experienced in the wilderness than me. A week into the course I started to realize that my background in the outdoors meant that I had more to offer to the group than I thought. I began to take the lead in many activities such as fishing and rock-climbing, and I also shared my knowledge of the outdoors with the rest of my group. This experience taught me to be more confident in my abilities. It also helped to teach me not to judge the abilities of others and... Read more →


Dillon Cronin: Built By the Skiers for the Skiers~ Stept. Productions

The company was started in 2002 when Nick Martini tore his ACL. Nick, always being a skier had no idea to do with his season. To make the most of the situation he went out, bought a camera, and started filming with his brother, Alex. The company started with the idea of a bunch of friends going out skiing and filming at the same time, nobody specialized in filming and was unable ski and vice versa, they were all able to just go out there and mess around showing us all what skiing is all about; going out there with a couple of buddies getting creative and having a great time. This year with their film "The Eighty Six" winning best jib for it's urban segments which are the best in the business. STEPT. will be sure to impress us once again this year while working on its diversity with some more powder segments. Read more →