February 21, 2013
March 7, 2013
Volume 4 Issue 3
Peters Township High School
264 East McMurray Road
McMurray, PA 15317
Meet the Staff
Business & Sports Editor
Life & Style Editor
Special Features Editor
PT Focus & News Editor
Voices and Student Work Editor
Staff Writers & Layout Staff
People Features Editor
Smoke Signals is produced six times a
school year by the students of Media
II, III, and IV Journalism staff at Peters Township High School.
The staff adviser is Mrs. N. Sitler.
Commentaries, reviews, and opinion
columns are the expressed opinion of
the author and not of Smoke Signals,
its advisor, or the
Peters Township School District.
enPT Focus 4-5
What’s Left Seniors?
To Be or Not To Be
Life & Style: 10-11
Trends of 2013
All’s Gold in Tinseltown
Student Work: 22-23
Media II, III, IV:
Is Social Media a Blessing or a Curse?
POWER RANKINGS: Celebrity Couples
That Should/Need to be Together
Who says I can’t be a matchmaker? I’m tired of seeing celebrities’ 2. Tim Tebow and Nicki Minaj
failed relationships, creating unnecessary drama that I don’t care
about. Here are the top four couples (or friendships, I guess) that need Josh, you’re straight up crazy. Am I though? Everyone knows
Tebow as the saint who can do no wrong. Here’s the thing: nice
to happen. Pronto.
guys finish last. It’s a fact. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. Let’s take a
4. Samuel L. Jackson and Stephen A. Smith
look at some of the recent Super Bowl winning quarterbacks, shall
we? Ah, Pittsburgh’s own Ben Roethlisberger. I’d love to say the
Is this breaking the rules? Very possibly. If you don’t get the dude has a clean track record, but alas, that’s merely a funny joke.
reference, feel free just to move past this one onto number three. Now, not by any means do I condone Big Ben’s actions, I’m just
For those of you know both of these men, HOW GREAT WOULD proving the point that he’s not perfect. Additionally, there’s Tom
THIS BE? Obviously, I am not implying anything, and I would even Brady. That guy is certainly no saint, leaving his pregnant girlfriend
be satisfied with just seeing the two celebrities go out for dinner.
for a supermodel. I’m not telling Tebow to go
The conversations would get so loud
against morals or to cause legal troubles, but
and so ridiculous. For example, could
he needs to live a little. Nicki (a.k.a. Roman)
LeBron James survive a snake full
adds the perfect amount of flair to his life. He’ll
of planes? Of course Jackson would
learn that he needs to stand up for himself.
say no, only he could pull off such a
He’ll learn to create an alter ego—then he’ll be
heroic feat. However, I feel that Smith
able to remain heavenly Tim, but switch to
would lean toward yes, only if Mario
an evil, angry, yet more accurate passer when
Chalmers wasn’t also on the plane,
because he would just distract James,
1. Taylor Swift and Jesse Eisenberg
leading to failure. Additionally, I can
almost guarantee the couple would
Serious question, everybody. Why is Taylor
frequently bicker over whether
Swift popular when she has only put out one
Stephen A. could pull off one of
song? (Not to mention, a bad song.) Woah, T-Swift fans! I know
Jackson’s hats. The possibilities are
that she’s topped the charts with more than a single tune, but is
there really any difference in any of them? Let me see. Cue guitar.
3. Ryan Gosling and Mila Kunis; Channing Tatum and Rachel Proceed to write about one of three things (or some combination):
1. There’s a pretty hot guy that you’ve been
checking out that just doesn’t notice you. 2.
I think you see the point I’m trying to make here. I’m sure I speak There’s a pretty hot guy, but he’s currently
for a high population of guys when I say I’m sick of hearing girls talk taken by some girl that’s undeserving of
about how sexy Ryan Gosling, Channing Tatum, Ryan Reynolds, or him. 3. You thought you were in love with
Zac Efron is. The list goes on and on. Girls, I’m sure you’re tired of this pretty hot guy, but he broke your heart.
hearing how attractive Mila Kunis, Rachel McAdams, Emma Stone, Yeah, that pretty much covers it. T-Swift
or Scarlett Johansson is. I think we can make a deal here. Let’s just needs to find a boyfriend that falls under the
take all of these people off the map. Fix them all up together and average category. Meet Jesse Eisenberg. He
they can go live on their own island of joy and good looks. We isn’t sweet or darling enough whereas she’ll
both set standards much higher because of these jerks that make us write a song about her Prince Charming, but
feel bad about ourselves. Where’s what matters on the inside? Isn’t he isn’t terrible enough to write a vent song about. Eisenberg pretty
that important anymore? Can’t everyone just care about everyone much always keeps a low-key, occasionally funny personality.
else’s feelings like in a Judy Blume book? Ugh. Anyway, that’s my
proposed solution. Take it or leave it.
All Photos from AP Images
Blackout of 2013: The Chipmunks
swallowed the school. Students
clung to their iPhones, the
only source of light in the
building. What happened?
What went on? Who turned
off the lights? The backup
generator that was supposed
to keep the school partially
lit failed, due to “chipmunks”
gnawing on the wires. January
30 will go down in history as
the infamous blackout of 2013.
At 10:06 am, during fourth
period, the high school lost all
power. Students in rooms with
no windows were relocated to
rooms with a view, and then a
partial lock down took effect.
For over three hours, students
were not allowed to leave.
students became restless. Any
food that could be found was
passed around. The teachers
in the library passed out
crackers and the cafeteria
staff brought around fruit and
salad to the first floor. Around
1:45 pm students were finally
permitted to leave the building.
Dismissal was a welcome
relief as students attempted
to rush to their lockers, until
they realized they were not
allowed access. Everyone got
a much needed break from
homework that night. If you
have any information on said
“chipmunks” please tell a
Actual Image from Blackout 2013
PTHSMadi Start| Staff Writer Abroad
Traveling to different countries can be fun and exciting,
especially if you’re with friends. Every year we count down the
days until summer, but when it’s finally here we find ourselves
constantly bored. Have you ever thought about experiencing a
different culture? PTHS offers an incredible “study abroad” type
program every summer. The best part is, you don’t actually study
or take a test. The trip involves going to a Spanish-speaking
country and experiencing their culture. This year, students are
traveling to Toledo, Madrid, Mulan, Barcelona, and a few other
cities in Europe.
Picchu was the most amazing
excursion our group embarked
throughout the duration of
the trip. To see such beautiful,
historic, ancient, and symbolic
masterpiece of a city of
an antique empire was an
experience that was highly
difficult to describe with words
in hindsight,” said sophomore All Photos from AP Images and Mrs.
Andrea Salizzoni|Staff Writer
All too often, the
kind acts people perform
everyday usually go unnoticed.
members of PTHS’s Interact
Club have always performed
these acts by helping those who
are less fortunate. On February
eighth, active members of this
club gave back to the most
deserving men in our country.
Students went to a
local home that is open to house
these men, thanks to a ministry
called “Shepherd’s Heart.” The
home is located in downtown
Pittsburgh. Men are housed
for up to six months, learning
how to acclimate into normal
everyday life. Men qualified to
live in this home have served
in the nations military. Men
are taught to manage finances,
deal with personal problems,
become mobile with a physical
handicap, and find joy in their
Although the Interact
students can only do so much
for these men, they contributed
as much time and effort as they
possibly could. The night was a
huge success. As a Valentine’s
Day gift and a thank-you to
these soldiers, our Interact
Club prepared and served a
pasta dinner for them. They
also provided music, courtesy
of the band students. The event
was successful in that not only
could we help these men, but
we could get to know them
and learn more about their
experience overseas. Giving
this night to these veterans was
not only rewarding, but it was
also a night that gave these men
something to hold on to for the
rest of their lives.
Although the trips are not school funded (meaning you
must pay to attend these trips), they always provide students with
a positive experience. Spanish teachers and other chaperones go
on these adventures along with the students. There is more than
one positive reason to go on one of these trips; you get to see the
world from a different point of view, gain a new perspective, and
of course, use the Spanish language.
“The best trip hands down was Peru 2012. It was the first
trip that I planned. It was the most beautiful and loving country I
have been to,” stated Mrs. Degnan.
Mrs. Degnan explained how students always mature
after they visit these different countries because they get to see the
world and experience things that people living in the US cannot
experience. If money is an issue and you cannot afford the trip
don’t worry; usually a trip occurs every summer or every other
summer. Unfortunately, there are no fundraising opportunities,
so you must save up the money on your own.
From Spain to Costa Rica to Peru, as well as many other
wonderful Spanish-speaking countries, PTHS students have been
there. Although the Spanish teachers are not sure of where to go
next year, it will surely be an incredible country. Life is short, and
in high school it is important to live while you can, before you
head off to college and are to busy to see the world.
The Real World of
Kassiana Politis|Staff Writer
and Physiology II
for students, giving
in almost any health
field they want to
pursue after high
“The program was eye opening. You learn the things you can’t
from a book,” said senior Kristi Riesmeyer. The goal of this class
is to give students a beneficial experience working with actual
doctors, nurses, and physical therapists. That type of experience
cannot happen sitting in a classroom.
“The program was awesome and very informative. It
really helped me decide if I wanted to go into this field,” said
senior Lauren Arcuri. Another goal of the program is to help
students confirm if the medical field and their particular job
choice are right for them.
However, only fifteen students, each semester have this
high school opportunity to mentor in a future career.
“To be allowed in the program you need to pass Anatomy I with
satisfactory grades, pass Biology and Algebra III, have a driver’s
license, and be very responsible,” said Riesmeyer.
The program is enjoyable and helpful for many students, but it
does take a lot of hard work and dedication as there are many
prerequisites required to be allowed in the class. For example, in
order to pass the class students must complete a minimum of 30
shadowing hours with their mentor.
The Antomy and Physiology II course offers a real world
experience for all interested students in pursuing a career in the
medical field should consider. Please contact the guidance office
for more information.
Athelte of the Month
Skill is an
easily recognizable attribute to spot.
basketball skills have displayed
his inner talent as an athlete.
With a 7-9 record, the team has
their work cut out for them if
they hope to make the playoffs.
Though their record doesn’t reveal it, the team is battling. All
of their losses have been within
“The team is looking
good, we’ve lost many close
games, but we’re battling and
getting better every day,” said
Norton. As a senior, Norton
has stepped up and proven
himself as a leader on the team.
“The will to win is what drives
me to do better in games,” Norton stated. Norton doesn’t just
express his leadership with his
talent; he also maintains his
cool under pressure. It seems as
though when he’s calm on the
court, it helps the team’s overall performance. It’s because of
this quality that makes his team
looks up to him.
“My vocal leadership
and the way I handle myself in
bad situations is what my team
takes from me the most,” Norton said. Norton’s hard work off
the court is another aspect as to
why he is a star player on the
team. His devotion to working
out and the many extra hours of
practice he puts in doesn’t hurt,
either. “If you want to be good
at something you must put time
and effort into it,” said Norton.
Skill is something that does not
develop overnight. It is something that takes time and effort,
and when you use those two to
your advantage, you come out
on top. Such is the case with
JEFF: With the NBA kicking off
the second half of the season, there
a couple of teams you should give
serious consideration to make the
finals. The Knicks from the East and
the Clippers from the West are the
teams that will make it. The Knicks
have a leader in Carmelo Anthony
and with a healthy Amar’e Stoudemire, NY should be nearly unbeatable in the Eastern Conference.
The Clippers are more than deep
enough to make a long run into the
finals and battling for their first ever
title. Chris Paul and Blake Griffin
will lead the team, and Jamal Crawford will come off the bench to put
up some serious points.
Good points Jeff, but
you’re wrong. For the Eastern
Conference, Miami is the team
to beat for various reasons, one
simply being because of their talent and depth. LeBron James and
Dwyane Wade are two of the best
players in the NBA and make everyone else on their team better.
Another reason is because they
won the NBA Championship last
year, so they know what it takes to
get the job done. For the Western
Conference, I love the Oklahoma
City Thunder. Even with the loss of
James Harden, this is a team that
plays great at home. If they gain
home court advantage throughout
the playoffs, I do not see them losing to anyone in the Western Conference. Kevin Durant is the best
scorer in the NBA and has been for
a while. He is virtually unguardable, and with the help of his sidekick Russell Westbrook, they are a
tough out. If these guys carry the
team while the role players do their
job, I expect to see a rematch for the
title this year.
JEFF: The Heat have a slim chance.
but there is no way that the Thunder
are going to get back to the finals for
a second straight year. Yes, they do
have big name players such as Durant
and Westbrook, but they don’t have
that sixth man that can make a difference. They have Kevin Martin, but
he will not be able to put up the num-
Athlete of the Month
S e n i o r
to the swim
season. This is her tenth year
swimming and she, along with
the rest of the swimmers, has
acquired more recognition
throughout the township because of her undeniable success and prowess in the sports
“I always keep my goals in
mind when practicing. I try
my hardest to make it to all
of the nine practices we have
a week because it’s my senior
year and the last chance to
qualify for WPIALS,” stated
Gaab. Her “lead by example”
mentality is a vital component to the team’s success and
a major part of their past and,
hopefully, future accomplishments. “This season we have
a lot of potential to succeed in
our section, and maybe even
become section champs,” said
Gaab. One of the hardships in
all high school sports is losing
experienced seniors, but Gaab
is still confident in the team’s
abilities. “Even though we lost
some talented seniors, the
freshmen we gained in return
made up for the loss,” she said.
and true passion for swimming is the foundation for
her success this season. Her
leadership has really brought
the girls’ team together and is
what sets her apart from the
NBA Debate: Love and Hate
Jeff BerryandJC Brush|StaffWriters
bers that James Harden did in helping his team make it to the championship round the previous year. The
Heat have Ray Allen to come off the
bench and put up some threes to add
a little bit of scoring, but he won’t be
able to put up 15+ points on a nightly
basis. If the Heat meet the Knicks in
the Conference Finals, they won’t be
able to handle the shooting of Melo
along with occasional scoring by J.R.
Smith. They just won’t be able to handle the Knicks.
JC: While both the Knicks and
Clippers are playing extremely well
in the regular season, they don’t
have what it takes to get the ring.
First off, the Knicks are simply a
different team with Amar’e Stoudemire. Anthony does not play well
with Stoudemire because they both
want the ball every possession. The
Knicks are so much better when
they spread the floor and have a
bunch of shooters on the floor
which cannot happen with Amar’e
on the court. There is no chance
they can guard Miami, James and
Photos AP Images
Wade are too much. Finally, Anthony is not a playoff performer,
he has only gotten through the
first round ONCE in his career. I
believe he is selfish and when the
going gets tough, he won’t be able
to get the job done. The Clippers
are coming on strong this year,
and have proved to be one of the
most exciting teams to watch in
the NBA with “Lob City,” but this
is the same team that got swept by
the older more experienced Spurs.
Chris Paul cannot stay healthy
and Blake Griffin is nothing more
than a human highlight reel.
Morality in Sports
When I say Ben Roethlisberger or Michael Vick what do you
think of? Quarterbacks? Surely. Superstars? You could make a good argument in their favor. Criminals who beat the system because of their
status as superstar quarterbacks? Now that’s an entirely different ballpark. Whether you choose to believe it or not, it’s always in the back of
your mind when you see the pair of shot callers slicing through opposing teams defenses and engineering game-winning drives Sunday after
Sunday. “Roethlisberger’s a rapist” and “Michael Vick? Don’t you mean
dog killer?” have become commonplace in society, and not without good
reason. But take a second and think of this. Ray Lewis, the Baltimore Ravens heralded linebacker, who is making his retirement tour more than
just a short trip due to the Ravens unsuspected playoff run this season, is
revered by both friend and foe as one of the greats to play the game both
on AND off the field. His enthusiasm for football and his spirituality are
unmatched, without a doubt. However, while a football hungry nation is
basking in his success as a player, they fail to remember, or choose to forget, what happened on the night of January 31, 2000. Whether Ray Lewis
was responsible for the murders of Richard Lollar and Jacinth Baker on
that fateful night is not for me to judge, but it brings up an increasingly
unsettling issue that needs to be addressed.
Rank the players in terms of their image as villains in society.
I’ll give you a second. One...two…okay, come back to me. How many
of you placed Vick at the top and Lewis on the bottom? That’s what I
thought. Now, rank the players alleged crimes in order from most atrocious to least atrocious. Most would say murder tops everything else, I
know I would. Herein lies the issue with the public’s perception of athletes in today’s world. Believe me when I say I DO NOT condone any of
the aforementioned incidents, but why is it that we praise someone who
may have murdered as something short of a god? Why is it that when
kids go to play Madden they always want to be Michael Vick? The answer
The Lockout Unlocked
The end of
m i x e d
player Trevor Recktenwald.
Even though hockey is back,
it meant that the Tomahawk
Charity Classic that Recktenwald was scheduled to play in
The Tomahawk Charity Classic was a hockey game
that was supposed to be played
between a few Pittsburgh
Penguins and the Johnstown Tomahawks of the
NAHL. Recktenwald was
also selected to play on
one of the teams. Unfortunately, the match was cancelled due to the lockout
Despite the charity game being cancelled,
Recktenwald is looking forward
to the season.
“I expect a very competitive season due to fewer
games. The whole season will be
more like a playoff atmosphere
because there is less room for
error in making the playoffs.”
Recktenwald won’t be able to skate
alongside some of the Pens, it
isn’t holding him back from
gearing up for the games. Hockey fans everywhere can rejoice
about the beginning of the 2013
is simple. We don’t know any better.
Athletes are a key cog in entertainment, and we are people that value
entertainment over integrity and virtue.
This is evident not only on
the national stage, but also deep within a small Ohio town on the outskirts
of Pittsburgh. Steubenville, Ohio, a self described “football hotbed”,
with a population of about 19,000, has been ravaged by an alleged rape
that has shocked the core of the community and split the town apart.
The victim is said to have been unconscious, and was allegedly carted
around to a series of parties on August 11th and 12th by members of the
Steubenville High football team. She was allegedly sexually assaulted at
least twice as others watched and took pictures and videos. The incident, which came to light a few weeks ago, and the cover up by a football
community has left a girl stripped of her innocence by two 16 year old
boys, Ma’lik Richmond and Trent Mays, who have a date in court to
decide their dismantled futures.
Does the name Jonas Salk ring a bell? Members of New York
Ladder Company 15? You probably have no idea who I’m talking about
because these names never come up in everyday conversation, but they
are more important to society than someone who plays a child’s game
for a living. Without Salk, the Polio epidemic rages on and still affects
millions today. Without the members of Ladder Company 15, hundreds
more die in vain on that dreadful Tuesday morning in New York City
eleven years ago. They didn’t have athletic ability, but they are more of a
hero than Michael Jordan or Joe Montana or any other athlete will ever
Max Preps Honors
Lady Indians Soccer
Kassiana Politis and Andrea Salizzoni|StaffWriters
On February 1, 2013, Pennsylvania State Senator Matt
Smith, along with MaxPreps Chief Representative,Matt Fargo, recognized the Varsity Girls’ Soccer and Tennis teams for their outstanding seasons. Each of these teams held state championships;
with the soccer team accomplishing their third straight state title
in a row, and the tennis team achieving their third state championship in the last four years. The title awarded to each team was the
PIAA AAA State Titles. MaxPreps representative Matt Fargo said,
“Out of one thousand schools across the country, we acknowledged
we rated the
t h rou g hout
AP Images and Photo by Tim Warne
What’s Left, Seniors?
We entered high school with nerves, expectations, excitement, and fears all based on what we heard. Some rumors
stand true, but others are far off. We thought the end would
never come, especially not this quickly, but now we are in the
last semester of our high school career with many special events
crammed in to our last 90 days.
It is now February and we find ourselves waiting, hoping,
and even dreading the direction of our future: college, workforce,
military, etc. By the end of March, all letters should be received,
and our decisions made by May. I know I find myself anxious and
uncertain about where I will spend my next four years. Maybe relief will set in after we know the plan for our near future. Senioritis is especially kicking in; we tend to find ourselves out of focus
with little desire to move forward with school work. “The second
semester is always easier for me because there is more to look
forward to with the warm weather and a fresh start,” said senior
Lydia McCall. For some, this year is not yet slowing down; the
AP tests are just around the corner. But the good news is after the
AP tests, the school year is actually almost over. Mandy Magnotti
stated, “It is a good feeling, but it is also surreal.”
On a more exciting note, we still have prom to look forward to. Our last high school dance is coming, making some sad,
and others rather relieved and excited. We started off freshman
year going to Homecoming in October 2009 and will end with
our senior prom in May 2013. The Snowball dance, hosted by the
cheerleaders, was always enjoyable in February, breaking up the
middle of the year. We have already experienced our last high
school football game and our last high school basketball game
is quickly approaching. “Being a part of
the basketball team
has been the best part
of my high school experience. I’m sad that
it’s ending, but thankful for what I’ve experienced. The things I
will miss the most are
not only games, but the
Photo by Mrs. Boni
camps, and time spent with the team,” stated senior Craig Johnson.
Senior week will include some of our last high school
experiences at PTHS. Yearbooks will be distributed, signed, and
then looked at 20 years from now. We will attend our last day of
class Monday, June 3. The following days will be spent preparing
to walk and receive our diplomas at commencement. It may be
tiring and rather boring practicing, but when Friday comes the
nerves and excitement will set in. We do get to have some fun in
between those exhausting practices, with Kennywood and our senior picnic. These will be the last memories tied to PTHS with our
friends. After graduation, most of us will go on a senior trip with
our friends. It will be a time to celebrate our accomplishments of
the past twelve years of our lives. It is also a time to enjoy with our
friends before the eagerness of our rapidly changing future sets in.
It will be interesting to all come together at our first reunion to see
the changes we all have made. The future is ours, Class of 2013.
How I May Possibly Anti-Climactically Meet Your Mother Eventually
Hi, my name is Josh Glicksman, and I’m a HIMYMaholic. I’ve watched every episode of “How I Met Your Mother”
that has ever aired—it’s currently in season eight—and know
each characters’ quirks and tendencies by heart. Now, you my
dearest reader may see the term “HIMYM-aholic” and think that
I absolutely love the show. No. In fact, I loathe it. I made the AA
reference for a reason—I want to stop, but I just can’t.
For those of you that are so blessed to have never invested
your time in the series, “How I Met Your Mother” is a television
show about a man who sits with his two children in the year 2030
and looks back as to how he met their mother. Cool idea, right? I
thought so too. Well, apparently Ted Mosby’s (the main character
of the series) kids have great attention spans, because he’s made
little progress in the past eight years.
Here’s the problem: Creators Carter Bays, Craig Thomas,
and Missy Alexander have just run through the same routine
for the past several years. And to be honest, I blame Alexander
because the show started to go downhill ever since she joined in
2009. The writers simply open doors that they will never close.
For you true fans, how many times have you heard Bob Saget (the
2030 version of Ted Moseby) say “but we’ll get back to that”—and
then never do it?! So many plot points they wrap up horribly (i.e.
Barney & Nora, Ted & Zoey). But hey, the show will just keep
moving right along, no worries.
Meanwhile, HIMYM has drastically limited its ability
to make funny episodes. Josh Radnor’s (present-day Ted
Moseby) character typically only shines when he admits that he
is a hopeless loser, but all too often Bays and company attempt
to make Moseby some sort of philosophical romantic that just
makes me say “bleh.” Jason Segel (who plays Marshall Erikson) is
a hilarious actor. It’s no secret—he’s starred in GREAT films such
as Forgetting Sarah Marshall and I Love You, Man. So why the
show’s writers insist on bogging him down to play the now-I’m-aresponsible-father-who-loves-my-wife role beats me. Where’s the
crazy, fun, ridiculous Jason Segel that I love? Dracula musical!
Lastly, there’s Barney Stinson (played by Neil Patrick
Harris). Here’s your bright spot. He’s always funny, unless he plays
the “I love Robyn” role. In all other cases, he’s legen… wait for it…
Now, this is about the point in the article where you
must be thinking: What is this guy complaining about? Should he
just stop watching the show?
If you’ve watched the show for as long as I have, you’re
pretty much stuck. You’ve followed this bogus story for eight
long, dragging on, never-ending years. It’s impossible to stop
now. We can just hope that the ending at least is interesting. It has
to be. However, knowing the writers, Ted will probably just bump
into his future wife, knocking over her Subway sandwich. Ted will
proceed to try and pick up the sub, look up into her eyes, and feel
destiny. Wow. Bravo.
February 2013 9
The Good and the Bad
For years, pop culture has been entertaining the lives of millions. Even
though what celebrities wear and what
they eat is considered jaw dropping, I
find celebrity couples most interesting.
You never know who is going to end
up with whom or whose relationship is
going to stay for good. We all thought
Heidi Klum and Seal would last, but
they showed us that love actually doesn’t exist when they filed for
divorce. In honor of Valentine’s Day, I have picked out the best and
the worst celebrity couples of 2012.
The celebrities that are on my “hot list” are ones that seem
happy and close to normal in their “not so normal” lives. The first
celebrity couple that I find darling is none other than Kate Middleton and Prince William. Sigh. The couple is downright adorable
and you can’t help but be happy when you see them together. What
makes this couple so charming, you ask? It may have to do with the
fact that Kate was an ordinary girl who was swept off her feet into
this fairytale and hasn’t looked back since. Again, sigh. The couple
is expecting a child to turn their blissful marriage into a beautiful
The next fabulous couple is Orlando Bloom and the lovely
Miranda Kerr. They have been together for five years and she gave
birth to their first child, Flynn just a year ago. The couple stays low
key in their busy lives but whenever they are seen together, they
still have a “honeymoon” glow about them. Gisele Bundchen and
Tom Brady are living proof that symmetry happens everywhere
in nature. Bundchen is the highest paid super model in the world
and Brady, is the highest paid NFL player in the universe. It is inevitable that these two would find each other. Other than being
wealthy and blissful, the couple is extremely attractive and is probably the best looking couple of all time. The world better watch out
whenever their two kids grow up.
The last couple I need to mention is Beyonce and Jay-Z. Hip-hop’s
most powerful duo has been together for a total of twelve years!
What a milestone. Before the couple got engaged in 2007, they
dated for seven years. Kudos to the happy family, along with their
little baby, Blue Ivy.
Now this is where my list gets a little nasty: the worst
couples in Hollywood. First I will have to mention Chris Brown
and Rihanna. Personally, I think they are two of a kind, but the
relationship could not be more toxic. The couple has been keeping their dangerous relationship under wraps, but we all know the
truth. Considering the fact that Rihanna has been posting pictures
on Instagram of her holding Brown’s hand, it seems like they’re
The breakup of Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber brings me
great sadness. I’ll have to admit that I was the couple’s biggest fan
about three months ago. They were the couple that radiated young
love, but now they have become
the melodramatic couple that
we all see in high school. The
couple broke my heart and took
the world on an emotional rollercoaster during their break up.
Finally, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West couldn’t be
more suitable for each other but
that doesn’t make them any less
annoying. With both of their
egos, the world, as we know it,
may in fact blow up. “Kimye” is really what the Mayans had in
mind when they predicted the end of the world.
The Edge of the Cliff
Photos from AP Images
The scene plays itself
again and again and yet we never seem to learn from our faults.
Since 1999, 92 people have been
murdered by school shooters.
Many of the most infamous
massacres such as Newtown,
Virginia Tech, and Columbine
have occurred in the last fourteen years.
As a family friend of a
man who survived the Virginia
Tech shootings, I empathize
greatly with the families of victims. After watching the news,
researching various statistics,
and reading an article written
by the mother of a mentally ill
child, I have an opinion about
what is the cause of these tragedies.
Let’s jump back to the
1980’s, during the years of the
Reagan presidency. Nationwide, mental hospitals were
closed down. How were the
former patients supposed to
integrate into the community?
Sometimes, they were placed
in community housing where
they all lived together under a
watchful eye, but that was not
enough. Many of them wound
up homeless, poor, and without
proper medical care. For these
individuals, being in a nation
without government healthcare
was the edge of the cliff.
After the de-institutionalizing in the 1990s and
2000s, research was conducted
on disorders such as autism, epilepsy, ADHD, and depression.
However, care for mental disabilities was like paying for college tuition (without financial
aid) for a three-year old child.
Although these treatments were
extremely effective and changed
the lives of the patient as well as
the families, they were expensive so many could not afford to
pay for them. According to New
York Times writer Tara ParkerPope, in her article “The Cost
of Autism,” treatment costs can
cost anywhere from $67,000 to
$72,000 a year, depending on
how severe the condition is.
Suffering individuals are having
more difficulty in society because they cannot afford these
insanely priced treatments.
Now imagine if you
were homeless or a formal mental patient, living just under the
poverty line (around $15K annually). Let’s say you earned
around $12K per year and have
suffered from schizophrenia all
of your life. Your rent might
cost you around $5K a year,
your water bill around $500 a
year, cable might cost you another $600 a year, and phone,
another $500. Add the cost of
food, maybe $600 a year, and
gasoline, $2K a year. All of that
closely adds up to $10K annually. How do you scrape up the
money from the $2K you have
left to pay for medicine that
costs over $5K a year?
That’s why I am calling
for people on all ends of the political spectrum—Republicans,
conservatives, liberals, Democrats, libertarians, and independents to provide all Americans
with an effective mental health
care system. Gun control is not
what’s truly wrong with our
country. If we are a beacon of
hope to the world, we need to
take the lead and provide all of
our citizens with the necessary
mental health care needed.
10 Life & Style
A new year brings
new innovation in the world
of beauty. Products such as
BB Creams, beauty oils and
new nail products are taking
over the cosmetics aisle, and
that’s just naming a few. Here
are some must-have items to
throw into your makeup bag
that will be sure to leave a
smile on your face for the rest
BB Cream, or Blemish Balm Cream, is an all-inone replacement for foundation that primes, moisturizes,
covers up just about everything that could need it, and
provides sun protection.
Costs and brands range anywhere from drugstore Garnier to luxury brand Boscia.
Many companies are putting additional serums into
Lexi Miller|Life and Style Editor
their formulas that provide Up Break Up Cleansing Oil.
Have you ever tried
anti-aging, anti-acne, and ex-
tra hydrating benefits. This is leather nails? Sequined? Cavone item that will become an iar? Nail companies such as
everyday staple as it cuts down Nails, Inc., a London-based
on time and provides the same company, have made these and
look as four or five products many other designs. Their latest innovations provide everycombined.
Beauty oils are bomb- thing needed to create these
shell products in the cosmetics effects with a simple kit. While
industry. They are essentially these innovations have yet to
oil-based liquids that can be hit drugstore shelves, they can
used on the cuticles, skin, and be purchased from Sephora or
hair. Beauty oils come in for- Ulta.
Urban Decay Cosmulas for cleansers, serums,
and treatments. The key to metics has done it again with
using a beauty oil is to ap- their best-selling “Naked” line
ply it immediately following a by adding two new products:
shower, when your skin has the the Naked Basics Palette and
highest capability of absorbing the Naked Nail Polish set. The
it. The top oil on the market basics palette includes 6 matte
for hair right now is the Ojon shades, comprised of 4 of their
Hair Therapy Treatment, and classic colors and two brand
for skin it’s the Boscia Make new ones. The nail polish set
includes nail polish adaptations of 6 colors from the
Naked palettes. The neutral
colors are perfect for winter
and can go with virtually any
These are some essentials that will not only
make your winter beauty routine more effective, but also
more fun. Check them out at
your local drugstore, Sephora
Find Your Disney Prince in PT
oin’ It Li
og saw his
rprise! Th e had crawled out
What a in. Even if h
shadow a hole to find no re we would
of his little across the ground ter. This
his strewn x more weeks of w ng up
ill have si re weeks of bundli ould
means six ring the cold, whic advisconque
t a trusted ce of
not be po . I want you to tak nts and not
y - pants used the word pa ide the
the fact th it is freezing cold air of Jordan
rts. When be wearing is a p rdan
last thing match your Jordan ith slacks or jean
ead, aim to
t of differe
shoes. Inst tch an assortmen rs such as light gre
at will m ntemporary co
Choose c s and mix it up by jean. If you’re
r to your
with a da
nice shirt , adding some colo harm,
feeling wil ould not do it any nds are
wardrobe because all your fr rdan
her. Just around in their Jo have
busy runn orts doesn’t mean Be the
d Nike sh w a fading trend.
Attention PT princesses: Once upon a time, in the royal township of
Peters lived all the princesses and princes in the land. But, trying to find
the perfect prince can be a difficult task. And with a bibbidy-bobbidyboo answer these questions to watch your PT Prince appear.
How do you want to meet your prince?
A. He rescues you by helping you with your physics homework
B. He wakes you up before getting caught sleeping by Mrs.
C. He finds your calculator and returns it before your math
What kind of date would you like your prince to take you on?
A. Going rock climbing B. Going to the movies. C. Going
out to dinner .
Where do you want to live with your prince?
A. In the city B. In a rural farm area
What do you want your prince to give you as a gift?
A. A box of chocolates
C. In the suburbs
B. A Tiffany ring
C. A pair of
What do you want your prince to be?
A. A bad-boy
B. A straight-A student
C. An athlete
Congratulations, you have found the type of prince you desire. If you picked mostly A’s, your prince is most like Jasmine’s prince,
Aladdin. He is the typical bad-boy, living on the edge and supplying you
with plenty of adventures. If you picked mostly B’s, your prince is most
like Sleeping Beauty’s prince, who is the nice-guy that is always there for
you. If you picked mostly C’s, your prince is most like Cinderella’s, Prince
Charming. He is the kind of guy that will sweep you off your feet with
his good looks and charm. Good luck finding him and living happily
Accessories are a
girl’s best friend. Having a few
of the basic essentials creates
multiple looks and accentuates your style. Fashion is all
about exploring, finding new
ideas, and expressing yourself.
Shopping is an awaiting adventure. Sometimes, though,
it is difficult to find the accessories for a specific dress or
outfit. You may not even have a
set idea of what you are looking
for, the fun of it is just experimenting with colors or styles
that are unique or different.
Here’s a first inside look at the
new, bright, and cheerful trends
that are going to hit the runway
come spring time.
A necessity for every girl is jewelry: necklaces,
bracelets, and earrings. Layered
necklaces, metallic bracelets,
and three-dimensional earrings
are examples of jewelry that can
dress up any outfit for any occasion. Charming Charlie’s is
great if you are looking for a
specific color or pattern. Francesca’s Boutique is great if you
are looking for something formal or school casual. Jewelry
can also add an extra burst of
“wow” to your hair strands by
wearing clips and headbands.
Clips or pins with rhinestones
or bright colors can turn a laid
back style into a trend. Pick
jewelry pieces that can be worn
with multiple looks. If you can
wear it more than once, it was
a great buy.
Boots are a true fashion statement and it is great to
have multiple pairs in different
shades. Leather and combat
boots are important to have in
your closet; they go great with
skinny jeans and a cute top.
Snow boots are casual footwear
that should be put away as winter comes to a close. Colorful
or sequined boots can still be
worn in early spring weather.
Handbags come in all
sizes and colors. Wristlets are
small, simple, and perfect for a
date night at the movies while
over-the-shoulder purses are
great for shopping or hanging
out with friends. The dimension and texture of handbags
updates any outfit.
With these few basic
necessities, you could be hitting the runway yourself. Play
around with colors and patterns to make your outfits a
work of art. Happy shopping!
All Photos from AP Images
ThrowbacksEliseJoziwak|StaffWriter a Comeback
Fashion is one industry
that constantly changes. Styles
are in one day, and out the next,
and then years later, they make a
comeback. Everyone has walked
through the hallways noticed
the explosions of neon colors,
leg warmers, or hair scrunchies.
Like it or not, 80’s are making a
Leg warmers are an old
fad reintroduced to the world.
They were huge in the 80’s and
are huge today. Granted, we
aren’t wearing the exact same ones as our parents did, but none
the less they are often paired with Ugg boots or leggings.
This brings up the next trend, leggings. Neon leggings,
black leggings, or leggings with print on them were all major fashion styles in the 80’s and are again today. To complete this daytime
80’s look, pair your leg warmers and leggings with an over sized
t-shirt. Not only could you pair up the t-shirt with leggings, but
you could also go for more of an edgy look and match them with a
miniskirt and a big, gaudy belt around your waist to sport over the
shirt. Sound familiar? Ask your mom.
Now of course all the fashion trends of the 80’s have been
modified a bit for the 21st century, but the idea is still there. Some
accessories you still see today would be oversized earrings, finger-
less gloves, neon nail polish/ makeup, and Ray-Ban styled sunglasses. High waisted jeans and streaks of color in your hair have
also been seen in this day and age. Thrown all together, you have a
21st century trendy look.
Not only has the fashion of the 80’s made a comeback,
but so have the hairstyles. Big volumized hair was the crucial aspect to completing an outfit back in the 80’s. The objective was
to have your hair go out to your shoulders, and never move from
there. Hairspray and a teasing comb were a girl’s best friend. The
side ponytail and French braid have also had their second chance
in the lime light. For the shorter
hairstyles, the chopped edgy
look is seen on many celebrities
and teenagers, as well as the angular bob, which singer Rihanna
The modern, updated
version of all these looks can be
seen almost anywhere. They’re
the ones that obviously impacted the fashion industry enough
to be brought back into the future and given a second chance.
For as much as fashion changes,
you will always have the styles
Artist Madonna was one of the most
that will never leave.
influential fashion icons of the 80’s
with her bold style.
All photos from AP Images
To Be or N
Opportunity: Valentine’s Day is all about love. However, just because
you aren’t seeing anybody when it hits doesn’t mean you will be forever
alone. It’s up to you to decide how you interpret the holiday. Some hate it.
Some can’t get enough of it. But always remember, somewhere in the world
there is a certain someone with an empty space in their heart, waiting for you to fill it.
Valentine’s Day Cards : We were all five years old at one point. On Valentine’s
Day we used to gather in our classrooms and exchange treat bags, many of which
contained some form of chocolate and was always accompanied by a Valentine’s Day
card. They are perfect for penning a nice ‘from your secret admirer’ on the back, and they
are perfect if they have nothing on them at all! I JUST WANT TO BE A KID AGAIN!
Candy Hearts: Or any candy for that matter. This is pretty self-explanatory. Number one, they are sugar, and no matter how hard you try to pretend you
are going on a diet we all know that come February 14 you will be tossing
these back faster than I can say Valentine’s. Secondly, who wouldn’t want
a little ‘I love you’ or a ‘you’re sweet’ message laced all over a pre-packaged candy? If that is not enough to brighten your day then nothing is.
The Atmosphere: It doesn’t matter if you are in a relationship or if you are
single, Valentine’s Day brings out the best in all of us. It is the one day during the
year where being happy is not accompanied by questions or fillers. I can’t
exactly explain it in writing, but waking up on Valentine’s Day just has
a different feel to it. Maybe I just keep getting hit by Cupid’s arrow.
Matchmaker: Is it just me or is it odd how everyone
seems to get matched with their best friend or the girl or
boy they want to be matched with? I mean…technology definitely does not have anything to do with
it, right? Regardless, paying two dollars for
a sheet of paper with a list of beautiful women who are supposedly
compatible with you doesn’t
sound too bad to me.
Not To Be
Spread designed by Raelynn Noonan
Spread contributors Shane Dazen, Elise Jozwiak, and Jenna Taimuty
Teddy Bears: Why would you need a teddy bear when the
world has cats? They will cuddle with you, they give you kisses, and they are there for you after a bad day. Could a stuffed, inanimate object with a bow around its neck do that for you? I think not.
Your Parents: Any normal day of the year they avoid each other. Now,
all of a sudden, they can’t get enough of each other. It’s disgusting, we know. Just
try to avoid them at all costs and take cover in your bedroom…and stay there.
PDA in the hallways: To that couple all over each other in the hall…GO
HOME. The school hallway is not a place to suck face. There is no need for it. Find
another way to display to the student body how “in love” you are with each other.
Chocolate and Flowers: So cliché. Why is there a need for someone who will most likely “break your heart” in a few weeks to buy you
what you can buy yourself? The flowers will wilt, just like your relationship eventually will. You can purchase yourself higher quality chocolate than a heart shaped box full of mysterious generic candies. Go
out with your friends and take a trip to Sarris. You’ll feel much better.
Instagram and Twitter: On a normal day Instagram is filled
with “selfies” and Twitter is filled with depressing tweets about
how miserable everyone’s lives are. However, on February 14,
the mood changes completely and everyone all of a sudden
has “the best boyfriend in the entire world,” along with
multiple kissy face emojis and pictures of their “adorable” presents. Please, stop. No one cares. Everyone would much rather see depressing tweets
and inappropriate selfies than hundreds
of girls/boys claiming that they have
the cutest/best significant other.
14 People Features
The Ascent of the Titans
The Titans worked every Saturday to
build and program their robot.
Everyone thought that
by 2013 there would be personal
robots to do homework, make
the bed, do the dishes, and
complete other menial tasks.
The technology is not there
yet, but it isn’t far off and may
be available in the near future.
Though it’s too late for current
students to have math-bots, it’s
not too late to build them.
FIRST (For Inspiration
and Recognition of Science and
Technology) was created in 1989
to encourage future scientists
and engineers to pursue their
interests and learn what they
will need in their future careers.
national programs for all ages,
with two specifically geared
towards high school students.
The Titanium Titans, a team
of fourteen Peters students,
entered the FIRST Robotics
LEGOS and stuff, but it’s not
good enough. So we decided to
build a robot,” said sophomore
The Titans, composed
primarily of sophomores, began
planning for the competition in
October. The FIRST Robotics
Competition requires students
to work with professional
engineers to build and program
a robot to perform a specified
task. Not only is this a learning
opportunity, FIRST also awards
over $16 million in scholarship
money. The competition’s
Kickoff took place at Carnegie
Mellon University on January 5.
“The Kickoff is where
we got to learn about what
the game is and afterwards we
broke into random groups
where we discussed strategies
for the game. Afterwards
you can leave or go to quick
build where you start building
the robot,” said sophomore
This year’s game is
“Ultimate Ascent,” which is
basically the robot version of
Ultimate Frisbee. The robot
must be able to toss Frisbees
into a goal. Each goal is worth
a different amount of points,
and to win the robot must
score the most points.
“We program the
robot to shoot Frisbees by
itself, but at the end of the
time limit we can manually
control it,” said sophomore
Part of the challenge
of the competition is the
strict budget and time limit.
The Titans had six weeks to
complete their robot from
parts provided at the Kickoff.
Though they were given the
parts, the Titans still needed
to pay for them.
“You have to get
sponsors because it costs a lot
of money. You have a limited
budget of $4,000,” said Leng.
The majority of the
Titans hope to be engineers
someday, and this competition
gives them the opportunity
to work with software,
electrical, and mechanical
engineers. These engineers
serve as the mentors for the
Titans and most are parents
and community members of
The base of the robot has to be able to
move as well as support the portion
of the robot that shoots the Frisbees.
Day at the Zoo with Lilly Fornof
Everyone has that passion, hobby, obsession or talent converting
that keeps him going. However, not everyone uses that talent. swimming exhibit to a wave pool
Freshman Lilly Fornof is unique. She employs her passion and for the penguins. Additionally,
love of animals for good, volunteering at the Pittsburgh Zoo. they have created an automatic seal
“When I was little, I really wanted to be an astronaut, until that mimics the characteristics and
I learned more about the vacuum of never ending darkness called actions of a live seal, so the polar
space, which I am now deathly afraid of. I have always loved animals bears have something to hunt.
and decided to learn more about them,” said Fornof. Fornof has been The volunteers also made a nine
volunteering weekly at the zoo since she was in eighth grade. She foot tall baby giraffe made out of
is part of a program specifically for high schoolers called Zoo You. paper –mâché filled with meat.
She is able to study the behavioral patterns of most of the animals They gave this giant toy to the lions
at the zoo and even gets to handle some of the animals herself. She and watched as they ripped it apart.
has handled black bears, sea turtles, giraffes, snakes, peacocks and Apart from the hands on experience with
much more. Fornof is even allowed to go behind the scenes with the animals, Fornof also takes higher level classes. They are very
the tigers, lions and cheetahs. Of course, safety always comes first. rigorous note-taking lectures about animal behavior studies. “I’m
their lucky to have the opportunity to take these classes, I’m learning
trainers, no zoo keeper enters an exhibit without so much and I plan on using everything to help me succeed in
the animals being tranquilized first”.
Fornof said. school,” said Fornof. She definitely plans on using the experience
Fornof and her fellow teen volunteers also work to she gains at the zoo for an animal related job in her future.
make the zoo a better place for the animals. They are currently
Freshman Madison|StaffWriter Takes Charge
“Ever since first grade I’ve gone to all the high school
basketball games. My dream was always to be like them, and now
my dream is being fulfilled,” said freshman Madison Kerr, who is
currently a starter on the girls’ varsity basketball team. Not only is
Kerr already playing at the varsity level, she’s also a captain on the
team. “The most important aspects of being a captain are trying
to be a good leader and gaining the respect of my teammates, there
is a lot of pressure on me, but I’m gaining practice against more
experienced, older players,” said Kerr.
It’s not an easy position to fill, but Kerr is up for the challenge. Her coach, Ed Matthews, praised Kerr for her efforts. “Her
hard work, leadership, and passion of the game makes her the perfect captain,” Matthews said. When Kerr is not practicing with her
team, she makes her own practice time to improve her skills.
Kerr leads the team in points, as she is the highest scoring
player. She also made the girls’ varsity volleyball team earlier this
school year and lettered. Although sports take up a majority of her
time, Kerr really tries to concentrate on her academics. She was on
the high honor roll the last two quarters.
However, with basketball season currently in full swing,
the team is her main focus. “My personal goal is to make my teammates, parents, and coaches proud. It
is also to be a four year starter for the
high school team and to continue to
improve in all aspects of the game,” said
Kerr. While working towards her personal goals, she also has to set goals for
the team. Kerr said, “Some of our team
goals are to improve our game every day
and to grow together as a team and family.” Although Kerr has to balance school
and sports carefully, it’s all worth it to
her, as she describes basketball as her
In the Spotlight: Evan Opeka
then, junior Evan
won countless regional skating
competitions and is a two-time
national speed skating champion. The Peters Township
junior, qualified last year for
the United States Class One
Olympic Team, and is currently ranked first in his age
group. “It was honestly such
an amazing accomplishment,”
When Opeka was
eight, he decided to be the
first one in his family to play Team, playing against oppohockey. “I’ve always wanted to nents around western Pennplay it looked so much fun,” sylvania. “It’s a lot of traveling
said Opeka. He then started and training, but in the end, it’s
his hockey career with the worth it,” said Opeka.
Southpoint Rink Rats. Today,
On weekdays, Opeka
Opeka plays AA for the Pitts- is known as #75 for the Peters
burgh Predators 18 and under Township hockey team. The
squad, but no matter how old Indians, who are currently tied
he was or who he played for, he for first place with cross ice
has always been the fastest one rivals Canon- Mac, may have
out there. “It seemed too easy their eyes set on yet another
sometimes,” Opeka said with a Penguins Cup appearance.
smile. “Speed is a really big ad- “We had a rough start since we
vantage in this league.”
are so young and it took a while
One can only imagine to get going, but now that we
how busy Opeka is on a daily have beaten some good teams
basis playing for two hockey we are having a lot of success,”
teams and competing nation- said Opeka.
ally as a speed skater. His day
Opeka, who has restarts at the ice rink at four corded six goals and four
A.M. for speed skating. Later, assists so far this season, is
Opeka travels for his Predators helping his team achieve their
A Future Marine
“I have always been very interested in the military since I
was young. But as I got older I wondered what I would do with my
life and realized that I wanted to serve my country and do something worthwhile and something only one percent of the population does,” said senior Justin Puente. “I would like to think I am
prepared to stay long distances away from my family, but like most
people I still do not know how I will react to being away from my
family and friends.”
Puente made the life-changing choice of enlisting in The
Few, The Proud, The United States Marine Corps. Currently, Puente is signed up for a four-year enlistment. Training will begin for
him as soon as he graduates. His training for the Marines consists
of boot camp in Parris Island, South Carolina for thirteen weeks,
then Marine Combat Training Battalion for 29 days. His military
job will be decided after ten week of training in Military Occupational Specialty school. The hardships of joining the military seem
ultimate goal, a state championship. “As a team I can say we
are looking forward to this opportunity, and with this team,
we can do it.”
With this year’s seniors leaving after the season,
Opeka’s role for the Indians is
going to be much greater next
year. However, it is also a challenge that he will gladly accept.
“Each year our roles
get bigger and each year we
improve as a team, so yes, I’m
ready to accept a larger role.”
stated Opeka. We can expect a
lot out of Opeka with the speed
he has. He may win many additional medals and who knows?
Maybe even yet another national championship.
to fade when Puente thinks of all the amazing experiences he will
enjoy and all the places he will visit.
Puente’s parents, although worried about his well being,
are very supportive of his
decision to join the Marines, which also calms some nerves. Puente
feels that he is prepared for the drastic transition into the world of a Marine.
“It is hard because you will never
know where you will be or what you will be
doing, but I know I am absolutely willing to
fight and die for my family, friends, and my
country,” Puente stated.
Puente plans on receiving his college degree after his first term and more than
likely, re-enlisting in the United States Marine Corps once he graduates.
By: Matt Mu
Technology is great, I’ll be the first to say that we are addicted to our conveniences.
However, there are some things that we shouldn’t use it for, such as, ASKING SOMEONE OUT.
The ‘Friend Zone’
Don’t lead anyone on, and then
shut them down. If you have other super awesome plans with your super awesome friends and someone isn’t invited,
don’t tell them about it and then not invite them. That’s rude. They will just
stay home and eat an entire carton of ice
cream, alone, in their basement, watching reruns of “Grey’s Anatomy.”
The ‘Incredibly Blunt’
Use the manners that your parents
took so long to teach you and ask someone out. Don’t TELL them. Hold a nice
conversation and then ease into it and ask
them. Better yet, why don’t you talk to
them in person?
The ‘Wrong Number’
If someone texts you, text them
back. Don’t be a jerk and make them
go crazy thinking “why aren’t they
texting me back?!” Let them down easy.
Sure it’s easier to just not text them and
run away from your problems, but you
know what’s even more mature?
Telling them in person.
The ‘Group Message’
So the moral of the story:
Texting someone is all fun and games until you try to ask someone out.
Just talk to them in person, human interaction is FUN!
All’s Gold in Tinseltown
With awards season about in full swing, critics and fans alike are making their predictions about which entertainers will take
home trophies this year. Despite the television awards show, the Emmy’s, being months away, every other aspect of the entertainment
business is being recognized for the achievements of the past year. Although the opinions of the critics are considered the most credible,
these opinions don’t always reflect those of the fans. For this reason, we turn to the students of Peters Township for their favorites in
entertainment from the past year.
The Academy appears to have shown a great deal of class in its
nominations for fine films of the past year. Although I would strongly advise a trip to see all nominated films, there were a few that made quite an
impact on critics specifically. Of course, the Oscars nominations would be
incomplete without a Spielberg film. Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” received
twelve nominations and appears to be the critics’ favorite this year. “Lincoln” is accompanied by the previously limited release, “Zero Dark Thirty,” about the American take-down of Osama Bin Laden. Austrian drama
“Amour” received five nominations, including Best Picture. Fan-favorite
“Silver Linings Playbook,” received a multitude of nominations.
Besides the obvious bias in favor of Stephen Chbosky’s
“The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” the students of Peters Township favored a variety of films from 2012,
which they think you should see as well, these include:
The 2013 Grammy award nominations feature some new and
familiar faces. Indie-folk crooners, Mumford Sons received multiple
nominations and will most likely sweep house again this year. Frank
Ocean of Odd Future fame gained a lot of attention for his album Channel
Orange and is favored by the Academy and fans alike. Pop-rock group,
fun., Detroit Alt-rockers, the Black Keys, and country-pop favorite, Taylor
Swift are all favored by most.
“Regina Spektor’s What We Saw From the Cheap
Seats”– Madelyn Estep, ‘13
“Ed Sheeran’s +”– Morgan Everson, ‘15
“Maroon 5’s Overexposed”- Matt Hilzendeger, ‘15
“Mumford Sons’ Babel”- Jake Caputo, ‘13
“Blink-182’s Dogs Eating Dogs”- Joey Cortese, ‘15
“fun.’s Some Nights”- Annie Koch, ‘15
This past summer, the Primetime Emmy Awards, once again,
showered ABC’s Modern Family with four awards, including (yet again)
Best Comedy Series. Dramatic favorites for 2012 included AMC’s Breaking Bad, Showtime’s Homeland, and HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. Also honored History Channel’s The Hatfields McCoys , Louis C.K. for his own
show and multiple specials, and the cast and crew of HBO’s Game Change.
“FOX’s New Girl”- Stephanie Vierheller, ‘13
“NBC’s Revolution”- Garrett Warmbein, ‘13
“MTV’s The Inbetweeners”- Nick Fury, ‘14
“CBS’s Vegas” – Ross Lynam, ‘13
“AMC’s The Walking Dead”- Zach Rothhaar, ‘16
“CBS’s How I Met Your Mother”- Kylie Marshall, ‘15
What PT Students Love
What the Critics Love
“The Dark Knight Rises”- Caitlin Pendergast, ‘15
“Pitch Perfect”- Mandy Magnotti, ‘13
“Beasts of the Southern Wild”- Josh Glicksman, ‘14
“Titanic 3D”- Grace Baumiller, ‘14
“Silver Linings Playbook”- Hannah Squeglia, ‘13
“The Avengers”- Dan Wiegmann, ‘13
PopulAr Mystery TV Hit
The ABC Family hit drama series
Pretty Little Liars started back up with its
winter premiere in January. Although the
new episodes are answering fans’ questions,
new ones are rising, causing fans to sit on
the edges of their seats, anxiously awaiting the next weekly episode. Pretty Little
Liars debuted in 2010 and has increased in
popularity all around the world. The show
follows four, once best friends. The queen
bee of their group, Alison, mysteriously
disappeared one night at a sleepover. It is
not until a year later, that Alison’s body is
discovered and the mystery behind her
murder begins, bringing the girls close
again. Throughout the series, the girls receive anonymous text-messages from an
unknown figure that goes by the name of
“A”. The series’ main storyline surrounds
the fight to uncover the identity of “A,” and
learn the true story behind Alison’s murder.
The show, as well as the stars of it, have been
nominated numerous times for awards
such as the Teen Choice Awards, People’s
Choice Awards, and the Young Hollywood
Awards and have won nearly all of them.
Fans everywhere are watching in anticipation as the murder mystery unfolds.
Anticipated Albums of 2013
Big Sean – Hall of Fame (February 2013)
Big Sean has not had a very long career, but he is already
working on his sophomore album entitled Hall of Fame. He created a
lot of buzz from his Finally Famous mixtapes and his first album Finally Famous: The Album. Signing with G.O.O.D. Music was a dream
come true for the Detroit rapper. While working with Kanye’s expertise and the rest of the G.O.O.D. music crew, we can expect a lot from
his second album.
Mac Miller – Watching Movies with the Sound Off (Spring 2013)
Mac is busy putting out yet another album. His successor to Blue Slide
Park is Watching Movies with the Sound
Off, and he is collaborating with a number of different artists such as Schoolboy
Q, Earl Sweatshirt, and Ab-Soul. Mac
has been working on completing not
only this album, but he will be releasing
not one, but two new mixtapes. The first
is “Pink Slime”, which is his collaboration between Pharrell and himself, and
his second is entitled “92 Til Infinity”. 2013 is going to be a big year
Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience (TBA)
JT is back! On January 14, Justin Timberlake released a single of his new
project, The 20/20 Experience, called
“Suit Tie” which has a smooth,
classy, and jazz-filled mood to it. Timberlake says he started working in the
studio again in June 2012, and went in
with no rules or end goal in mind. He
is working with artists and producers
such as Jay-Z (who is featured on the
newly released track), Pharrell, and
Timberland. The comeback of JT has
been long awaited and seeing what he has been working on the past
few months will be a treat for all of his fans.
KiD CuDi – Indicud (March 2013)
Scott Mescudi has been working hard on a multitude of different projects from short films with Shia LaBeouf, to his alternative
side project WZRD, to working on the G.O.O.D. Music collaboration
album, Cruel Summer, and not to mention his individual career. Cudi
has released a preview of his newest album Indicud with the release
of the song “King Wizard.” He is working with other artists and producers such as King Chip and Diplo. His collaborations are the most
exciting part of his new album and should live up to the hype.
The Entertainment Must-List
Laura Purkey |Online Editor-In-Chief
Valentine’s Day is approaching and so are the same predictable rom-coms and ridiculous Rod Stewart love songs. But the day doesn’t
have to be filled with these sappy movies and cheesy music. Instead, here are some cliché-free pop culture greats for February 14.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
This movie about love is one
you’ll actually want to see. When a couple’s
relationship goes downhill, they both try to
erase each other from their minds to get rid of
all the awful memories. However, the process
makes them realize the good moments
in their relationship outweigh the bad.
Clementine (played by a rambunctious Kate
Winslet) and Joel (a refined Jim Carrey) then
go back and explore their memories together.
The unique storyline and beautifully directed
shots combine to make the movie a must-see.
There are few things more
intriguing than the Roaring Twenties.
Everything about the culture is interesting-the art, the music, and the literature gave the
time period a feel that was larger than life. It
was a period of happiness that was captured
perfectly by jazz singers and writers. This
Valentine’s Day, open up The Great Gatsby
and listen to the great Louis Armstrong and
be transported to a time of bliss and love.
Silver Linings Playbook
Everybody is a little crazy, whether diagnosed
or not. Silver Linings Playbook is a movie that
embraces the crazy. Utterly refreshing, the
film tells the story of Pat (Bradley Cooper)
who moves back with his family after spending
eight months in rehab. Trying to return to
normalcy is harder than expected, especially
with the bold and equally problematic Tiffany
(Jennifer Lawrence) befriending him. Being
normal may be ideal, but it’s never realistic.
Located in Belle Vernon, the
sweet and sensational bakery crafts its
staple—cakes and footprint cookies. Its
sugary desserts are the only cliché you’ll
want to feed into this Valentine’s Day.
The Flying Club Cup
Beirut is just one of the amazing
bands that never receive enough
recognition. Founded by Zach Condon,
the American band relies on many different
instruments in their music (ukulele,
accordion, euphonium, trumpet, and even
conch shells). Their second album, The
Flying Club Cup showcases a heavy French
influence, giving it a slightly romantic feel.
Condon’s soft melodic voice and gentle lyrics
make the album easy to listen to. Standout
tracks include “Un Dernier Verre (Pour la
Route),” “A Sunday Smile,” and “Nantes.”
RB is one of the worst clichés
for Valentine’s Day. However, wunderkind
RB singer Abel Tesfaye (The Weeknd)
changes the game. His soothing and
intimate voice mixes with intricately layered
beats to create an entirely new sound for the
genre. At the end of 2012 he released the
album Trilogy, a must-have for February 14.
Steubenville Rape Case:
Is Social Media A
Blessing or a Curse?
With recent sexual assault incidents dominating the news
and social media platforms, social network users are concerned
about their online security. The Steubenville rape scenario
proves that although Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are “private,” there is nothing private about any material posted online.
As technology advances, the skills and abilities of internet hackers advance as well. Social media can be a blessing or a curse,
but in the Steubenville rape case, it can definitely be considered
a curse. Listed below are the events that took place leading up to
*August 11, 2012-alleged gang-rape took place at a party in
Steubenville, Ohio. A 16-year-old girl was drugged until
unconsciousness and was assaulted by members of the high
school’s football team. Social media was involved at the
party, including pictures, videos and status updates which
were posted to Twitter and Facebook
*August 14, 2012-the event reported to the police by the
victim and her parents
*August 22, 2012-local news networks reported the incident
and the names of two of the football players, Trent Mays
and Ma’lik Richmond, both 16, were arrested for rape and
*Throughout August, the pictures and status updates started to be deleted
*November 2, 2012-Mays and Richmond were released
from a juvenile detention center and placed under house
arrest, kidnapping charges were dropped
*December 16, 2012-New York Times article made the
news go national
*December 23, 2012-Anonymous leaked thousands of Ohio
residents’ records to get noticed
*December 29, 2012-#OccupySteubenville-Anonymous organized a protest because of the injustice
*January 1, 2013-Anonymous group member “KnightSec”
had his leaked information put on a website called “Localleaks”
*January 2, 2013-Anonymous leaked a graphic video of the
guilty football team members making fun of the victim
*January 4, 2013-Jim Parks, one of the alleged adults involved in the crime, released a statement claiming that the
whole incident is false
The February 13 trial
may prove to be a landmark
case when it comes to social
media’s role in society. Due to
the leaked videos and status
updates, the public has perceived the two accused offenders as guilty. It will be interesting to find out how online
evidence will play a part when
both sides testify.
All photos from AP Images
Shift in Secretary of
Teamwork is vital in order for a presidential cabinet to
function. In Obama’s second term of presidency, he choose to release and replace ten members of his cabinet, including Secretary
of State Hillary Clinton.
It all started when Clinton suffered a concussion from
a fall, as a result of dehydration,
caused by the flu. Clinton then
took a post-concussion test, only
to discover that she had a blood
clot located behind her left ear.
Three days later she was admitted for treatment, and she was
released, but not before she was
let go from her position in the Obama Administration.
The move to release her may have been a unpopular with
most people, but then again it could end up helping her career.
Clinton is receiving a much needed break, and is getting a chance
to regroup if she were to run for president in 2016.
“If anything, just hearing about her changing positions
on the news might in fact increase her political status, but there is
no way to know for sure,” said sophomore Alex Meseck.
Not only could this boost Clinton’s political status, but it
could also distance her from the criticism that Obama is receiving
for events like the attack in Benghazi. There is no better way to
create a fresh start with foreign leaders than bringing in the experienced John Kerry.
What in the World?
Maybe public embarrassment is the best form of punishment. A woman in Cleveland passed a school bus which was unloading children by driving around it on the sidewalk. Her form
of punishment was determined by a Cleveland judge who believed
her misdemeanor deserved public punishment. The consequences
involved the woman holding a sign on a public street that read,
“Only an idiot would drive on the sidewalk to avoid a school bus.”
Guess she won’t be passing school buses anymore!
Who knew elephants could talk? Koshik, a 22-year-old
South Korean elephant uses his trunk to produce sounds similar to
his trainer’s voices, and is capable of saying “sit down”, “lie down”,
“hello”, “good” in Korean. Unfortunately, Koshik is not very skilled
at pronouncing consonants, but it’s a thrill that he can even utter
We all know our fair share of weird laws-no chewing gum
in Singapore, no carrying ice cream cones in your back pocket in
Kentucky, but who would’ve thought throwing snowballs would
become illegal? The police are cracking down on anyone who
throws snowballs at people or vehicles. It makes sense, but it’s definitely not something you’d expect to be a major crime. A police department in England attempted to “connect with”, or threaten the
younger generation via Facebook. Although teenagers are viewing
the new law as a joke, there have been no arrests thus far.
Forget being afraid of snakes, spiders or bears, because
owls are the next predators to watch out for. A 58 year old man
living in the UK became the victim of one of the first reported owl
attacks. He was hospitalized after the owl swooped down and sliced
the back of his head. The man was rushed to the hospital by an ambulance because of the large amounts of blood. Prior to seeing the
owl perched behind him, the man believed he was hit by a brick!
February 2013 21
Promised Land: The Marcellus Shale
Oil: it’s dirty, it’s toxic, and it’s looking to seal some key natural gas reserves in a small town. Seemade from dead dinosaurs. So ing that the town has been going through financial difficulties, Butwhy do we use it? Companies such ler assumed this would give the town some much needed economic
as Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania relief. However, over the course of his campaign, he is met with
and Equitable Gas wondered the much resistance from Dustin Noble (Krasinski), a leader of an ensame thing, and so came the intro- vironmental campaign.
duction of a new form of energyThe issue, like most, is not black and white. Before jumping to
any conclusions, it is important to understand its pros and cons.
Natural gas is a colorless, odor- Natural gas is a clean energy source and using it could cut down on
less gas that is cleaner and safer the release of particles such as nitrogen and sulfur oxides into the
than most other energy sources. air, both of which could cause health problems such as asthma. In
Objectively, it seems like an an- areas where fracking occurs, communities will usually experience
swer to the “go green” movement. However, natural gas can only an increase in economic activity. For many, this is a big deal conbe found in small pockets under the ground and the method of sidering the current state of the economy. Finally, by making the
extracting (also known as fracking) may not be as “green” as some switch to natural gas, the cost of energy may decrease.
would like. Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is the process of exConversely, runoff and erosion from drilling sites may affect the
tracting natural grass from shale rock layers deep within the earth. habitat for thousands of organisms in surrounding areas. Drilling
Though the EPA has put in strict regulations for companies looking can add hazardous contaminants to water supplies. Scientists have
to frack, many environmental hazards have yet to be discovered.
found large supplies of methane gas in water near drilling sites,
These potential health hazards have started a huge controversy, which is then carried to thousands of households and buildings.
especially in Pennsylvania (where many natural gas reserves have Fracking may also have a “gold rush” kind of effect on the drilling
been found). The movie Promised Land, starring Matt Damon and towns meaning the economy will experience a sudden spike but
John Krasinski, attempts to portray both sides of the story. In the once the reserves run out, jobs will be lost and the economy will
film, Steve Butler (Damon) is a salesman from a major company once again decline.
First it was MySpace, then
Facebook, and now, Twitter. The majority of students
are checking their feeds constantly, and tweeting every few
hours. But there’s a dilemmaeverything you tweet is now
being archived in the United
States Library of Congress.
They are doing this to save a
part of our culture for future
generations to see. However,
this will only affect those who
have public accounts; private
tweets will not be archived.
As long as this is going to happen, we may as well make our
Some of the topics that
were popular on Twitter were
the re-election of President
Obama, Hurricane Sandy, and
the Olympics. Other topics
that were also a big hit included
SOPA, a bill introduced by the
House of Representatives to
fight online copyrighted property and counterfeit goods, the
NFL Lockout, and the Newtown, Connecticut shooting.
On the night of the election, 31 million tweets were
sent out and the picture that @
BarackObama tweeted of him
and his wife with the caption “4
more years” was retweeted the
most times ever in history: over
320,000 times. This remained
a huge topic in the “Twittersphere” for many weeks after
Hurricane Sandy brought
in a huge storm of tweets with
20 million tweets sent between
October 27 and November 1.
People are still tweeting about it
today. Many of the victims have
tweeted pictures of the damage
to show how the East Coast was
affected by the Super Storm.
The 2012 Summer Olym-
pics were an enormous trend
on Twitter over the sixteen
days. Using the hashtag #London2012, it received the most
overall tweets of any event,
with 150 million tweets in total. 115,000 tweets per minute
were sent as the 1990s band,
the Spice Girls, performed at
the closing ceremony of the
Tweeting is a major
part of social media. It is becoming a huge part of our culture. The Library of Congress
is going to be saving all of our
tweets, so fill your tweet box
with 140 characters and help
preserve the culture of the 21st
All Photos from AP Images
Photography class has a very relaxed atmosphere, but students have to be focused. Time management
is an important aspect of the class. Students work on new projects that allow them to develop their knowledge
about Photoshop, the photography techniques, and DSLR cameras. Each year, the classes host a Gallery at the
Peters Township Public Library for two weeks in February to display their work.
Emily Cocco, 12
Cassi DeLuca, 11
Emmalee Doucoeur, 11
By Jenn Coffey
Emma Norton, 10
Seniors- What is your best Valentine’s Day box memory?
“Getting candy hearts- they’re
“I got a cut out valentine in 5th
grade that said ‘you’re pretty.’”
“Putting more candy in my 4th
grade crush’s box.”
“I got a card that said, ‘you’re
Juniors- Have you ever gotten/given a gift from someone on Valentine’s Day?
“No, nobody loves me.”
“Yes, a box of chocolates.”
“I gave my grandmother a
huge Sarris’ chocolate bar.”
Sophomores- Do you believe in love at first sight? Why or why not?
“Yes. That’s how I met my
“No because you have to get to
know the person first.”
Freshmen -What’s your best pickup line?
“Are you from space? ‘Cause
you’re out of this world.”
“Just give them a candy heart
that says ‘Be Mine’”.
Teachers- Who was your first crush?
“A girl in my class in 4th grade.”
“No, you can’t look at someone
and just know.”
“No, you need to get to know
“Did it hurt when you fell from
“Are you a library book? ‘Cause
I’m checking you out.”
“No one loved me.”