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Saturday, June 11, 2011

blog #26 senior week

"Stress, disease, and a little bit of happiness. That is senior week."  -Gene

Just thought I would throw out there that Gene has the capacity to say some intelligent things haha

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Blog #25 Life After

My two important APs are over :) Yes I still have to take microeconomics next week, but we all know no one is going to study for that. So, senior year is basically a cruise from here on out. A couple unfinished projects that need attending to and a couple neglected friends that need to be shown how to have fun. I am thoroughly exhausted from my week and am proud to say I slept for a solid twelve hours last night. Regardless of the matter I am extremely relieved and happy to say we have TEN DAYS of high school remaining haha. It is a very happy occasion, but also a very depressing time as well. I know in these last ten days it is seriously the last time we as the class of 2011 will be together. We gave SMH a good run.

Now to the normal subject topic of APs, I probably either just passed or failed both of my APs this week. (Senioritis) They both played the same exact trick on me. Dirty little devils both had simple Multiple choice problems and then the hellish free response. I literally sat down smiling during the Multiple choice and then cried during the later half of the test. It wasn't that I froze or was freaking out, I really just had no idea what I was doing. In reference to my caring about the exams and my previous blog post I feel as if I cared enough for a three, but maybe didn't execute at an optimal level. Its whatever, I'm glad I am just going to graduate and never have to worry about APs again. College midterms and finals can wait because for once I am going to enjoy this great triumph over the eight Aps I took over the years...

The Reflection

APs APs you are done in my eyes,
I don't care for another surprise,
I fail and you smile,
I pass and you cry for awhile.

You are no friend of mine so go away,
theres no chance in hell I'd want you to stay,
in my life from day to day,
Get the hell out and stay away.

APs APs we had a good run,
You remind me of burning in the sun,
My back all red and my skin on fire,
To say I'd miss you would make me a liar.

Begone and never rear your ugly face,

Cause now my life is an easy-going race.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Blog #24 May 1st Realizations

So it is the end of senior year and there is literally a month left in school. These days are supposed to be some of the best of my life, but i can't help but feel a little despair. For one APs are coming up, homework is still at an all-time high, and I just don't have the energy nor drive to do any of it. Fun is laying out in the sun, or preparing for the summer with friends... Summer hasn't started yet haha

So the realization that AP week literally starts tomorrow still has yet to hit me. Hopefully it does tomorrow when my first exam starts at 8 AM. But, the real realization is that none of the APs I am taking will help me in any way towards colleges other then canceling out electives I plan to take for fun anyway... The realization is that my entire senior year's worth of work seems to have been a waste of time better spent making memories with friends rather then having dates with my textbooks on the regular. That textbook never stops talking... May 1st is a very bad day. It is depressing because I know I may never see half of the people I run around with everyday at school, and it showed how I could definitely spent my last year in a much more enjoyable fashion.

I don't like May 1st, I don't like AP week starting tomorrow, and I damn well don't like knowing that I am absolutely unprepared for my tests to come this week. Hopefully my guessing ability is on key and I can pull up some bullshit to back up the Free Responses. AP Chemistry Monday, BC Calculus Wednesday, and AP Micro the following Thursday. Pray teachers have heart and don't kill us with homework and pray that the tests are semi easier then expected. When in Doubt put C!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Blog # 23 Mambo Number Five

From Composite Score to AP Score

The process of score setting—establishing the AP score boundaries (determining how many composite score points equals what AP score)—takes place immediately after the Reading.
AP Exam scores are reported on a 5-point scale as follows:

5  Extremely well qualified*
4  Well qualified*
3  Qualified*
2  Possibly qualified*
1  No recommendation**

*Qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
**No recommendation to receive college credit or advanced placement
During score-setting sessions (there is one for each AP Exam) composite scores are translated into AP scores by setting boundaries for each score based on a statistical technique called equating.
Equating relates an AP Exam from one year to an AP Exam from another year so that performance on the two exams can be compared. This is accomplished by looking at how well AP students performed on a set of multiple-choice questions that is common to both exams. These particular multiple-choice questions cover the curriculum content and represent a broad range of difficulty; they can therefore provide information about the ability level of the current group of students and indicate the current exam's level of difficulty. This same set of questions may show up on next year's AP Exam and the one after that too. That's why you aren't supposed to talk about or share the multiple-choice questions from the AP Exam with anyone; it's all because of equating!

http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/exgrd_set.html


 This excerpt is found on collegeboard.com as seen above. I have been very conscious of the grading of APs for all of the years I have taken them and feel very differently about the grading scale. I have created my own scale and would like to share my thoughts with the world. It is not comparable to whether the student is properly qualified, I honestly believe the five point scale is based off of how much a student actually even cares about "college credits" that do not even count towards most colleges.

I shall begin my quest for mambo number five at the bottom with the 1. This student has no taste for the subject. He/she does not like it and the subject just does not like them. They are the student who got by in the year cheating off of someone or being complacent with that solid B. They honestly walked into the test and opened the book and just began to laugh. No preparation and no caring, but it is commenable that they paid the 87$ just so the AP process can continue and other students such as themselves can fail this test. Hey they don't have to go back to class, and the AP doesn't affect their grades, least they showed up exam day.

Number two is possibly the most unlucky of the bunch because regardless of whether they tried or not, they were that close to passing and pretending they know the subject matter. Hey I got a two on history and knew I didn't deserve the three, but it was pretty upsetting either way. The two presents a student who showed up, probably coasted through the year and put an attempt into the AP exam. They didn't pass, but they tried their best (hopefully) and can at least say "Least I didn't get a 1". Either way getting a 2 does not feel good at all. I'd probably rather get a one so at least I could pretend I answered zero questions.

LUCKY NUMBER THREE, hey they passed! qualified AP scholar right there. Too bad most colleges only accept 4s or 5s on most subject matters, but hey in the eyes of AP you are qualified. Must mean alot. So not much to say about this one except the student studied and put the effort in and maybe just passed. The parents are glad and the kids ain't sad. Its a comfortable score and is comendable because APs stink. PS I'll bet my life that half of these kids guessed and got lucky.

Number 4. This is a kid who studied and put hard effort into the class. Even if they didn't get that all glorifying five, they are pretty damn smart. A four guarranttees that the kid is well qualified. I mean I don't see the difference between a well qualified and extremely well qualified student, but AP has to still put a four down even when they passed with flying colors. You did good kid to get a four, but you ain't the best.

MAMBO NUMBER 5, they are the big cheeses, the brainiacs, the brain children. Sharp kids. probably minimum 94% in said class and are just naturally bright. I would say that most of these kids cared about the test enough to at least review. Also, that alot of them are lucky fours who guessed on those last three questions when time was running out. They are extremely well qualified to forget all the info the day after the test.

The grading needs to be modified to a 'caring' basis. This test does bring in knowledge, but the questions are so broad that it really comes down to who even cares about the subject the most to take the time. My thought is that 4s and 5s be combined and 1s and 2s. A 1,2,3 grading scaled bell curve. AP week better go by fast...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Blog #22 AP Stress

APs o APs are on their way,
neither here nor there can I stay,
I pace and pace and achieve none,
AYYY I feel accomplished with a one.

Study Study Study,
Can't stop listening to Kid Cuddie,
The attempt to read books out in the sun,
Is a failure in the eyes of this one.

Its raining and cold in late April,
The foreshadow for the terrible tests to come,
It feels like its time to tear open a staple,
And crush those packets to become alumn.

APs o APs why don't you go burn in hell,
Really this late in senior year?
I already give in ring the bell,
The next few weeks are coming near...

The day after APs there will be a loud cheer,
Cause then there will be nothing to fear!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Blog # 21 A Decent Proposal

So I was roaming my future college campus the other day when I noticed a very peculiar sight. It was not illegal, it wasn't hugely noticeably, nor dangerous in itself. As I continued on my expedition I noticed this phenomenon again and again. Those damn red plastic cups were everywhere! I am no Environmental buff, but I am pretty sure that red plastic cups don't dissolve in rain or pick themselves up! It was a serious issue in my eyes. And again when I saw a dumpster there were mountains of these red little devils just hanging out. Plastic doesn't go away.

The stereotypical college partier is generally a 18-20 year old male with an untouched shirt that is wrinkled with a red plastic cup containing liquid. The plastic cup totally masks the fact that a beer is contained within the walls of that red fortress of fun. Either way most college parties have a few essentials to begin, light snacks with chips and dip, the proper refreshments, ping pong balls, a beer tap, and generally Red Cups. For even my birthday party in eigtht grade I had to buy red cups to hold soda. They're just convenient. But, on a college campus where do these cups generally end up? In the trash where they'll sit and be transported to the dump and just sit there, or they will find their place outside on the streets cold and alone. My proposal involves a college noticing these facts and to somehow strike a profit from this easily countered situation. It promotes less pollution, and less plastic.

First, give people the incentive to collect these cups. A dollar for every fifty or so cups. Second, have easily accessible collection centers, aka the dining halls or main campus lobby. Third, Recycle those cups. Fourth, resell them to the general public at college centers for a less then market price. Easily done and it costs less for the college to pay workers to clean the campus. Winners all around.

Just think of the endless positive. Red cup classrooms, re cup phones! animals don't get their heads stuck in cups and die, and cash money for the college. Go Green or Go Home. Colleges need to recognize haha



But on the serious note, there was a lot of trash to be picked up, and solutions need to be made.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Blog #20 Why does authority work?



Again I am scorned by the cold touch of authority and the wondrous atmosphere that it puts me in. I just cannot get over the psychological trance that many are put in by a person of authority. One moment they could be bad mouthing a commander, then when the officer is present they are the finest of listeners. I just do not understand it. In my previous blog I discussed some positive and negative aspects a leader must emulate in order so gain respect, fear, or an aura of knowledge that wills a group into following the example pledged by the so called authority figure. Why did an entire nation persecute and kill millions of Jews during the Holocaust? Why do children feel the need to listen to their parents and adults?  Why does authority work?

I'll begin with my opinion concerning something as heinous and vile as the Holocaust. Obviously a combination of factors come into play in this regard. "The open door phenomenon", manipulation, and leading by example were some prime features as to why authority worked in this instance. Some called the children of Germany during the era the "Hitler's youth". In school they were imprinted with the idea that Jews were sou less beings that needed to be eradicated. While this was the key principle basic human ethics got the better of some children. Some people just can't kill, so the Nazis perfected the open door idea in which they made individuals take baby steps to becoming killers. In a quick example, lets say someone is being tortured. This first job of the individual would be to guard the door, second to guard with back to the tortured with the door open, next to face and watch the tortured while guarding the opened door, next to possibly restrain the tortured, next to maybe even perform of the torture themselves. Nazis developed this technique to create ruthless killers to put fear into the army and look to Hitler as a god. Hitler created his authority because he was able to manipulate and create his subjects. This authority worked through manipulation.
Fear. I know for myself when I was younger I listened to my parents and teachers out of fear. I was frightened to get spanked. No one likes the belt to the naked bottom, stuff hurts... alot... Kids don't have a huge amount of worries. They listen to their parents and then follow the rules simple as that. But, why do they follow the rules? They are scared of their parents, hell I almost pooped myself in kindergarten when I stole a little toy from class without realizing. I got home and told my mom and felt the worst I think I've ever felt. Over ten years down the line I still remember the fear I had telling my mother in the kitchen of our old house I had stolen a school possession. Fear sounds horrible, but it does help teach a young boy or girl how to behave correctly. This form of authority works and is constructive even if it sounds awful.

I've given two terrible examples, but authority also works in a laid back society as well. Take men's volleyball at st. mark's for example. We don't work very hard, we barely warm up for games, we don't even have practices on Fridays or weekends, and our huddles during a game consist of us trying to think of a good cheer. (We've shouted things like Leggo My Eggo, Too infinity and Beyond, Pound, Babs, Strocko, Winston, Four, Three... so on) We do all this, yet we win games? We are the team with by far the best chemistry in the state. Every one of us messes up sometimes and yet we all still smile and have fun. Why do we work? Because we have respect for our coach, and she has respect for us. She understands its the end of the year and that we don't care about school nor want to have the stress of a nagging coach. Stephanie Strocko is a great authority figure who understands us. All she gives us is a glare/ a swift comment here or there and that's all we need to keep in line. We honestly play for the fun of it while other teams pull their hair out for every point. Its awesome.

Why does authority work? It works for a multitude of reasons. Out of all three of the examples I went over I definitely know the third is the best mostly because we aren't literally killing people, and we aren't scared of anyone. What type of authority have you dealt with over the years?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Blog #19 Authority

It occurred to me the other day that authority sometimes acts in weird ways. Sometimes it’s a tool that is abused and others it is a tool to be utilized. I have been observing and wondering about different kinds of authority lately and this is what I have concluded. It is neither good nor bad, its just kind of there...

Executive Stuco
I’ll begin with some productive authority figures. Most people dislike her, and I know a huge amount of people who have made sour faces at her, behind her back, but I admire her for her perseverance and ability to get things done. This lady goes unnamed, but is respected and admired for the duties she performs. Hey everyone may not be the biggest fan, but what truly are her motives behind her bravado. I don’t think she hates kids nor do I believe she just likes our pain. I think she acts in the way she does to unite our class and eventually the entire school. Before this year school was great and I did not care for the lives of half my classmates. I went along thinking as long as I had my close friends we could get through anything. This year changed my view of that. New policies, half the girls at St. Marks receiving detentions, creating a three hour Saturday detention, being a dress code Nazi, and even yelling at Gene for certain things has really changed how our school operates. While people have strong feelings for her, she still gets things done and knows that by everyone holding her in not the grandest of fashions makes her a common enemy we will in turn all be united as a school against her new policies. She is a good family friend and I can even say that sometimes I just want to stand up at an assembly and clock her in the face when she screams quiet. And to say I liked not knowing half my new friends would be a complete lie. Outside of school she is the sweetest lady there is, at school you better have your shirt tail in or you're dead meat haha. She opened some minds to new things this year. Another productive authority figure is the teaching style of Mrs. Healey. Letting our class be run by us and for us seems pretty effective. I doubt anything would have been accomplished this year if we were not given the freedom to promote our own voices. So to say the first's uniting power and Mrs. Healey’s free spirit are two types of excellent authority is a pretty accurate statement. (I’m not being a kiss ass)

Some awful authority figures I have come into contact with include many rude teachers who take it upon themselves to belittle kids and do not care for anyone but themselves. I doubt I am allowed to name these teachers for the sake of my grade and for any of them reading this, but I will use a historical example instead. My most hated authority figure in the entire world of history has to be Adolf Hitler. He ruled out of fear and power. He brain washed children and killed millions of people. Regardless of his ruthlessness he is definitely a lot worse then the teachers I have dealt with. So I am going to make a modest proposal and relate the two. Adolf Hitler was the worst leader in the history of time because he demanded fear, showed zero compassion, created enemies, provoked allies, and killed millions. He ‘built’ a nation that was doomed to crumble. Like a teaching environment one has to be delicate and act accordingly to the people one comes into contact with. Hitler didn’t care to know his people; he just cared to get to his goal to destroy Jews and world domination. The bad teachers didn’t bother with the kids, and just wanted to reach the goal of having ‘taught’ their info (saying it out loud) and not worrying whether it went in one ear and out of the other nor if anything was actually retained. Awful authority is authority without feeling. If you don’t care for the people you deal with, then they in turn won’t care about you.

Authority sucks, but we need it.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Blog #18 AYYY Seniors, 4th quarter!


The end is finally near. I for one am just about ready to cheer.
We attend school and laugh, but inside we quake and we gasp.
College is just around the bend, and together we will no longer stand.


One more quarter of tests, homework, quests, and of me and my friends being together for the last time in four years. There probably will never be an occasion again in my life where I will feel the unity our class has built up over the last four years. This year I have become friends with some pretty unique individuals who I honestly never spoke to until this year. I am sad to say it took me three years to meet these people, I am even sadder to say that I may only get to see them for this final quarter.

The impact senior year has had on me is that the first Day of school when teachers said it will fly by, I thought they were full of it. Now looking back I should have listened to them. This year shot by in the blink of an eye. I feel as if I have not taken full swing and hit the fence with my effort to make this year one to always remember. This is it, the final quarter of high school and where I have lacked so far I plan to fill in the gaps. Sorry school work you are now going to have to take a back seat because I am going that extra mile to make sure my friends do not miss the time I should give to them.

This fourth quarter I will dedicate myself to remembering the last four years and to making sure I don't forget anyone who was a part of them. One quarter left, lets FSU Seniors (Florida State University)
What do you plan to do with your last quarter of high school/ what did you do?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Blog Assesment

Blog Assessment
            I have been reviewing my stats sheet daily for about a week now hoping and praying for it to change. Sadly it has not, but we will get to what I gravely found out later in this assessment. To begin I really enjoy this blogging experience, I have never done anything so open or free from criticism. It seems as if people are always kind and respectful when commenting on or viewing the blogs I have posted. With this in mind it is still an assignment that I could do without, but the choice between this or a handwritten piece each week is a pretty simple and easy choice. I would go Blogging all the way!
            My readership according to my charts is about the same. By month, my average remains equal except in December when we only blogged once for about four weeks. The month of March looks promising to say that I will probably hit about one hundred and fifty views. If I ever breach two hundred it will really make my day. I am not one hundred percent what keeps the consistency of the mid hundred views a month, but the possibility is that I may have frequent viewers who check it about once a week and never do any less or more checks then that. I will say that the first poem I wrote definitely crushed in its d├ębut and the first day I got about twenty views. I think the subject matter came into play as well because when I was trying to focus on States I needed to blog about it because it was really all that was on my mind, needless to say I probably received less than ten views of it. The beer pong post received great recognition, probably because my readers are mostly young teens or my friends from school, I do not get any comments from them because I am scared of how vulgar their words may be. With that in mind my readership has reached new bounds and has been viewed in ten countries which I think is pretty cool.
            My popular posts screen… The one thing I dreaded because I feel it will hurt my grade. Well either way MY MOST POPULAR POST was the one about beer pong… I am sorry Mrs. Healey first off, and second that maybe my readers are as simple-minded as myself. Either way it does tell me I have a young audience and that they find the game interesting enough to view the blog sixty-eight times. No surprise, my second most viewed post was my first and favorite poem, “A Dream Far Off”, which was about senior week and the glory to come. Third was the blog that reflected on Michael Vick. These three topics are very widely known and something everyone has an opinion so there is no surprise they were the top three. Also, I believe they were my best written and the ones I took the most time on.
            My referring sites and keyword searches very much disappoint me. Three out of the four top keywords searched are ones that refer to the beer pong blog, and only one to the poem one. I would really have rather had the poem acclaim more stats then the beer pong one. The referring sites are Facebook, Twitter, and Google which I believe is normal because I post on facebook sometimes about the blogs I write, I’ve heard there have been a few tweets about it, and well Google can get you anywhere.
            All in all I believe I deserve a 90-94% ranged grade. Not because I have a lot of views, but because I completed the assignments and enjoyed doing them. I am really not in it for the page views, I am in it to write about something that interests me and if people read it then cool, if not I feel better having written something that has the opportunity to last a lot longer then I will.
            What I learned about audience is that I have a really young audience and that some of the more in depth posts about sexism and what not probably went above their heads. When I wrote about beer pong they were tuned in completely… I do not know how I will use this yet, but if I ever do I’ll be sure to let you know how it works out. I think I found my voice when I write by being able to do these blogs.


posted late, but turned in my paper copy early

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Blog #17 Refreshed from Research

There are always those couple of bumps in the road that you know are coming each school year. For some they are tests, sports, SATs, College acceptances, and research papers. One of the huge bumps for me was this research paper and I am taking full advantage of having this weekend to celebrate being finished my final major research paper of high school and the fact I turned eighteen on Thursday. With this research paper out of the way all that is left is finding a prom date and AP tests and then all the hardships of high school are at their end.

Even with this paper out of the way Monday starts an entirely new bump beginning a new chapter of math to prepare for the AP Test, final practices for Fashion Show are this week, and my first Volleyball game is on Tuesday. Regardless of all of that, today and tomorrow I do not care about any of that stuff. I am going to sleep and I am going to love not having to worry whether my paper is perfect or not.

This is a very short blog because I am exhausted from a couple late nights during the week and my brain is fried by all the tests I also took throughout the course of this week. How does everyone feel about being done their research papers?

Friday, March 11, 2011

Blog #16 St. Patrick's DAY!!!!



There are those certain holidays that everyone just loves. Christmas, Halloween, and maybe even Valentine’s Day for the lucky couple, but then there are those ‘Sub-holidays’ that some people just do not get excited about. Some include Columbus Day, Mothers and Fathers days, Labor Day, and just about the feast day of every saint. Well it just so happens that this Thursday is a holiday that I feel people need to get pretty hyped about. For one thing green is my favorite color, and Shamrocks just plain look awesome. Not to mention my Birthday Lands on this day, but that’s a story for another time.
St. Patrick’s Day lands on March 17th. Out of my friends I have to sadly admit that only half of them know this because I am a really loud and obnoxious about turning eighteen, and the other half do not even know St. Patrick’s Day is next week. (This is probably and exaggeration)


Michael Valania

Today most people view this Holiday as a drinking affair where beer is bountiful and the drinking age is in non-existence. Colleges everywhere explode with parties for this affair. Penn state even has its one weekend designated State Patty’s Day to celebrate the Holiday the last week in February before Spring Break.  I am glad some people are celebrating this holiday in a fine fashion and enjoying the hype that comes along with it. But, unfortunately children and older adults around the world just shrug this holiday off because the hype is only for young adults and teens.... I think those people are farts who forgot what this holiday is all about... IT IS A CELEBRATION!!! Go out and wear green even if you aren’t Irish. It’s a perfect excuse to go wild.  Personally I love seeing everyone in green because for one day being pale and having freckles is a little less embarrassing.

St. Patrick was a bishop in Ireland in the year 432. He taught the people of Ireland Christianity in its most simplistic form of the Trinity. Now people had a difficult time understanding how three people could join as one. Cleverly, St. Patrick used the Shamrock to describe and teach the faith to all who wished to hear. Each of the three leaves of the Shamrock represented the father, son, or Holy Spirit. His teachings made him the Patron of Ireland.  Today in America there is a substantial percent of us who are Irish and would like to be recognized for our heritage. We helped make America the melting pot that it has become and brought a holiday with us to boot. Hey it’s a great reason to take a night off of work and spend it wish the family or go out and drink up with your friends.

What do you do on St. Patrick’s Day?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Blog #15 Graduation

We have counted and waited for the day to come,
Our hope mustered and our dreams hung,
Our thoughts linger and feelings grow even bigger,
The final days have begun.

We have longed for and wanted this day of luck,
Our minds stalwart and our eyes stuck,
Our bodies quaking and our feet shaking,
Graduation is the one.

We have been patient and pleasant for four long years,
Our brains worked and our hands grinded like gears,
Our time has come and we are ready to become,
The best and brightest St. Mark's Alum.



Sunday, February 27, 2011

Blog #14 Utah's Super Fan

As I opened my internet explorer page this morning something on its headlines caught my eye. “Utah State superfan 'Wild Bill' has become college hoops celebrity” Now I am neither a Utah State fan, nor even close to a college basketball fan. I stick to the professionals with the NBA. But, when I read this article I was astounded by the antics performed by Billy Sproat who has been named the ‘Wild Bill’ of our time.

            This man started out a simple fan that attended games and wore funny costumes to game. He had been The Little Mermaid, Pot from Beauty and the Beast, Peter Pan, and numerous other characters that range from Disney movies to even Nacho Libre. Once fame grew and his target audience began noticing him (the opposing team) he took his rightful spot behind the opposing team’s hoop and began his distraction sessions. For each foul shot by the other team he will literally stand on the ledge in front of him and dance/shout at the player taking the foul shots. He is simply an icon to the Utah community. Most recently he dressed as Pot to a Utah game and had the entire crowd of students behind him singing “I’m a Little Teapot Short and Stout....”. He sparks his team to greatness and literally is a big part of why they are projected to enter the NCAA March Madness tournament at a 9th seed. He says if the team makes the final four then he has something very special planned so make sure to stay tuned.
            Billy Sproat was a common fan who rose to greatness. His compassion for the sport of basketball and team spirit has not gone unnoticed. He is the talk of the announcers at Utah home games and even travels to away games to see his team in action. With his publicity he has been mentioned on ESPN’s ‘Pardon the Interruption’, interviewed on ‘First Take’, visited ESPNU’s office in Charlotte, and has even become a YouTube sensation. He is the model of team spirit that I wish we had at our school. How far would you go to support your school? How would your parents feel if you were prancing around on national televison?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Blog #13 States

This week as many of the students at our school do not know, a select few men and women will be competing and representing our school in swimming states. Out of about the two thousand students at St. Mark’s nine men represent the men’s swim team and about twenty girls represent the women. This Wednesday at 6 pm the girls will begin the 3 day event with their preliminary races that should end around midnight. Thursday the boys swim at 6 pm and I want you to know Mrs. Healey if I come to school Friday I shall be thoroughly exhausted and not the least bit productive in class. Saturday is finals, in the morning the girls will race and in the evening the men will race. All racing is at the Little Bob and Newark Delaware on the UD campus.


With all of this in mind the men on my team are sophomores Brian Panaccione, Sean Baker, Brandon Lee, Andrew Adami, and TJ Barnett. The seniors are AJ Panaccione, Cole McQuilken, and myself. The lone freshman is Chris Zwilglemeyer. We ranked third overall in the state during the regular season and hope for a second or third finish at states behind Sallies. If you happen to see any of us during the week do not laugh at our shaved legs... We did not have a choice because it’s a men’s team tradition and it feels pretty good. Don’t laugh until you try it Gene.
The girls had a great season finishing at second in the state behind Charter. Based on individual times and racings right now they are seated to win states by five points, for those of you who do not know what this means it is basically one race. This is Anne Smith’s and Rachel Spurrier’s last meet as a St. Mark’s Spartan so definitely wish them the best of luck.
As for myself I am swimming in the 200 Medley Relay, 50 Freestyle, 200 Freestyle Relay, and 400 Freestyle Relay. Last year I completely bombed my 50 Freestyle, but have comeback strong and am currently ranked 5th in the state. Our relays are ranked 3rd in the Medley, 2nd in the 200 Free Relay, and 3rd in the 400 Free Relay.
If you happen to see anyone on the swim team throughout the week rub their heads good luck and do not ask them to show you their legs.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Blog #12 Thinking about the future

As I look back I regret greatly, love fanatically, and live for what I have accomplished, excelled, and failed at during my tenure at St. Mark's High school. It has been an unforgettable four years. I want to first thank all my teachers, classmates, and friends who have battled and survived this place called school. I know having me as a student is not easy because my voice never stops and my opinions run their course even when a teacher says not to, but I truly am thankful for the knowledge I have received.

Over half way done senior year... Class of 2011. I am almost 18 years old, legally I will be able to vote, buy cigs, and totally stay at the mall past 5PM without an ADULT! Big step I know haha What I also think about is how I have changed and grown up with each passing year. Every year I have had a huge want, freshmen year it was to be like the seniors all cool and hip, sophomore year it was to drive and ghost ride the whip, junior year it was to get the SAT over with asap... and now Senior year it is to not get held back and survive to senior week. In many ways I have not changed, but in just as numerous a ways I have.



Will I grow up and learn even more when I attend college? Will I adhere to bad habits and become an outcast from my family? Will I fail? Will I stand out as much as I have at St. Mark's? Will my teachers even give two sh**s about me? These are my biggest fears when leaving St. Mark’s. Next year I will experience the first schooling that my brothers and sister cannot help me through. They had walked the halls of St. Mark’s and taken every class I have taken, but not next year. I truly hope I will do well and keep off my Freshman 15. (aka bad foods not beer). What is your biggest fear going into next year?

Blog #11 Life Once Knew

It is no matter whether it be large or small,
the large can be small while the small can stand tall,
It is not a matter of right or wrong,
the justice runs deep and long.

People can try and tell you what to enjoy,
but it is based on the person to ploy,
People can try and enjoy the little things,
but it is not based on little stings.

When you take my little things I lose a part of myself,
the incompleteness of that grand old shelf,
it is a tragedy to think one would take that which so becomes,
even if that small stands tall in the world of one.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Blog #10 What will you tell your children?

I just recently commented on Rachel’s blog about MTV and some of the television shows the station airs. Needless to say it got me pretty heated and gave me a fantastic idea for this blog.

What will you tell your kids?
Ever person in the world has had a moment they are not proud of. Whether there are many acts of unconceivable embarrassment, guilt, or just plain trouble or there are few miniscule acts, everyone has some skeletons in their closets. Will you share there monsters with your kids or will you keep them locked up? Will you set boundaries with long-time friends and stories they can and cannot share? I wish I could honestly say I will be one hundred percent completely open with my future children, but at seventeen I can think of at least twenty instances I will not share with anyone right on the spot. Is this a bad thing? No, it is shielding our kids from mistakes and letting them learn from their own. Our psyche has a stronger impact on us when seeing is believing; hearing about things from our parents makes them seem so much less intense. I for one believe the things I do not tell my children prepare me for when they slip-up and I know how to help them rise above it.

Some of the things on television today have surprised me. Recorded television shows able to be seen for as long as television still exists are facts I feel many have misplaced. For instance, the “Jersey Shore” cast... What the hell will possible future children think of their parents prancing around, getting arrested, drunk, bringing anyone willing home, and arguing to the point of fist fights? Yes, they are millionaires, and yes the kids’ lives are already set for greatness, but embarrassment runs deeper then the pockets filled with gold. Especially Vinny who seems the most normal out of all of the cast and whose kids have a chance at being normal... he is going to need to do something about this show because some of the things that happened are a little over the top...

From our class perspective, if any of us were on a reality television program and got arrested for being a nuisance in public, and we were reported and taped saying F**K you to the cops, I would probably get a vasectomy or quit the show change my name and move to a foreign country where my kids will not have to walk around school everyday taking the blunt for my mistakes.

I love “Jersey Shore” because it entertains me, but in no way shape or form would I ever want to be any of them for the future repercussions of the show. 

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Blog #9 Just Another Saturday

Life is sour, sensitive, and sad
the Days grow longer just a tad
with each passing moment I wish for the next
O where o why was my life hexed.

Life is nothing, neutral, and normal
The Hours just go less then optimal
with each moment lost I feel no strife
O where o why is this my life. 

Life is living, loving, and light
The Minutes flow by bright
with each moment gone I live life alive
O where o why can't I survive.

Life is precious and great
Never forget and Never wait
Seize the moment and the day
Never ever give yourself away.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Blog #8 Superbowl Preview


Like millions of people out there, I am a solid and devout Steelers' fan. I have been since birth and will continue to be until the day I am dead. Being biased I choose the Steelers to win, but not in a dominating fashion. Big Ben is not a unfamiliar character when it comes to Super Bowls, he already has two world championships! His supporting class is excellent as well including long-time veteran Heath Miller, Hines Ward, and some new shining stars in Mike Wallace, Rashard Mendenhall, Emmanuel Sanders, Antonia Brown, and Maurkice Pouncey. Of the four shining stars three of them are rookies and are going to be playing in the biggest game of their lives come Super bowl Sunday. (Side-not Pouncey is questionable for full Steelers roster)

Troy Polamalu is arguably the greatest safety this game has ever seen. His long flowing hair that endorses Head n’ Shoulders is said to be insured for millions. He is a nightmare for any defense and especially the lives of young wide-receivers. Along with this Super bowl Champ we are graced with long-time cornerback Ike Taylor and the most fined man in football for his crushing hits James Harrison. Along with these three we have a postseason hero in free safety Ryan Clark and a very successful D-Line that puts pressure on any offense. The Steel Curtain has risen again and its not going anywhere, but Disney Land.

Now the Green Bay Packers… more for my own personal health and anxiety I would like to say they suck and are a terrible team… This is not the case however. Aaron Rodgers is a mastermind when the ball is in his hands and can analyze and tear up almost any defensive design thrown at him. Along with him he has a receiving core equal to that of the gods in Donald Driver and Greg Jennings… Late star and by far my MVP for the Green Bay Packers in this post season is the young rookie running back James Starks who ran all over the Falcons and Eagles. The Bears might have contained him somewhat, but the team overall is a dominating force.

As the Sports Center analysts predict, this could be one of the greatest shootouts in history. Great D vs. Great O

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Blog #7 A Dream Far off...

A week to remember, a week to feel alive,
The reason we study the reason we thrive,
Our main motivation is our only drive,
To attain this week and make it our own,
The epic times better set in stone.

A week to remember, a week to feel alive!
The reason we dream the reason we strive,
Our main goal is to survive,
To attain this week and make it our own,
The choice of recklessness is lone.

A week to dream of, a week to feel alive!
Senior Week please o please come arrive,
The only goal is to feel the warm touch dive
into my life and make it its own,
This week is one week that shall always stand alone.




A Mark Burgess Original

Monday, January 24, 2011

Blog #6 America's NEW Pastime


Today teens have created an entirely new game that is all the rage. People play it far and wide and will continue to in the years to follow. I am not speaking about football, soccer, or any other athletic event. I do not even think this "sport" has ever been portrayed alone on television. This game goes by many names, the most widely known name is Beer Pong.
Being 17 I have obviously never played with real beer, but you can use substitutes as in Gatorade or water. Now why is this America's new pastime? Give a teenager a football or a ping pong ball, more times then naught a teen shall pick the ping pong ball. I am not saying this transition is a very good or noble act, but recognition that this game has reared its ugly face and will continue to over time is a valid point needed to be recognized by future adults.

With all this in mind, Beer Pong is a drinking game for college youth and young adults. It is played at sporting events, tailgates, and at the occasional party. This game does not get one drunk, actually I have read that it is better because one drinks so little alcohol during the game that one cannot possibly get drunk from playing this game on the reg. This depends on how much beer actually is put into each cup, but the official website says not too much is needed.
The Beer Pong evolution, from usng paddles to hands, and widespread fame across the United States began originally at Dartmouth College in the 1950s and 60s, where it has now become part of the social stamina that college students build upon. It is a team "sport", it builds massive character and chemistry between the two players on each team. This teamwork and trust is shown in the movie "Beerfest" which portrays a group of middle-aged Americans battling against all odds and representing the USA in the world event known as Beerfest. This game is intense. It requires patience, good sportsmanship, a strong stomache (for some), and excellent hand-eye coordination.

So to continue this argument that Beer Pong has become the new American Pastime, it is everywhere... Ask almost any student at any high school, they will have some idea to the rules of this global phenom. This game has penetrated our culture on a multitude of levels. It has corrupted the youth, entered the film industry, and is even gaining fame over the internet and television. It is going to be a global phenomenon that I hope we as human beings have strong enough livers to last through.

Drink Safe and responsibly, this blog does not endorse or denounce the game it is just explaining an opinion that this game must be recognized for its existence and that in no way shape or form will it go away any time soon.

Can not tell if this is real, but these boys are clearly masters.