Melrose High School, Melrose, MA

Melrose High School, Melrose, MA

Thursday, February 27, 2014

February Poem of the Month!

Walt Whitman (1819–1892).  Leaves of Grass.  1900. 

180. When I heard the Learn’d Astronomer 

WHEN I heard the learn’d astronomer;
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me;
When I was shown the charts and the diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them;
When I, sitting, heard the astronomer, where he lectured with much applause in the lecture-room,
How soon, unaccountable, I became tired and sick;         5
Till rising and gliding out, I wander’d off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars.

Taste Test: Bagels!!!

Bagels. Everyone loves bagels. Whether you are like me and eat 5-6 bagels a week or you live under a rock and only eat 1-2 a week, we all love them. Warm or room temperature, with cream cheese, butter or plain, bagels are a satisfying breakfast, lunch or dinner food. A lot of companies produce bagels, some specialize in it, and others merely make it on the side. I have had a lot of bagels in my time from a lot of different places. And I was curious as to which one was the best. I chose three popular bagel shops in or near Melrose and tested them out. To keep everything even and fair, I tested plain bagels with plain cream cheese from every shop.

First up: Brueggers. Located on Main Street, Melrose, this bagel shop offers many bagels as well as sandwiches and salads. I ordered a plain bagel as usual with plain cream cheese. The bagel was slightly warm because it was fresh that morning. The bagel itself was warm and soft on the inside but perfectly crunchy on the outside. The plain cream cheese compliments the bagel nicely and over all the combination is very nice.

Second, I tested Finagle-a-bagel. Their bagels are slightly larger than the ones at Brueggers, but not as thick. The products were complimentary as well. The overall package is good. Not absolutely amazing but good. The cafe offers other bagel like foods, like sandwiches and salads.

Third, I tested Bagel World. Their bagels are very good. Much like the others, they are well complimented by their cream cheese. The bagels are of average size and are filling for a meal.

By now you can probably tell which bagel I liked most. Out of convenience, being located right in Melrose, and because of the great taste, Brueggers, to me, is the best bagel!!

By: Elisa Lemack

Drama Club's Competition Show

The drama club at Melrose High School is entering a competition that brings together schools from all over the state. They must perform a 40 minute play of their choice which is separate from the 5 minutes at the beginning to set up and take down the set.
Mr. Daly, a history teacher at MHS is the head of our school’s production and even wrote the play that will be performed. “It is an original piece called ‘Hide and Seek’. It is a show that I actually wrote in high school and preformed my senior year. Four years ago we did re-writes to it and this year students came to me after reading the play and asked if we could perform it again.” Mr. Daly was inspired to write the play when a student in his freshmen year art class passed away from a drunk-driving accident.
The play tells the story of Kate, a girl who is coming to terms with a recent drunk driving accident she was in, that killed her best friend Sarah. It also shows how other girls in the school are dealing with it. “The students felt like it was something that still spoke to the generation. We did some re-writes to it, taking the 90’s out of it and now taking the 2000’s out of it. It includes reoccurring themes that are relatable for high school students,” says Daly.
Francesca Rizzo a cast member describes the play as “really moving; it shows what it is like behind the scenes at the high school. It includes a lot of problems kids go through like depression, anxiety and stress. I feel like at the high school level we all have some form of those things and if we don’t, then we know someone who does.” Rizzo plays the role of Abby, a close friend of Sarah’s. “She is very blunt with everything; it almost is like she doesn’t have a filter, but she is very understanding .”
The competition works by having a bunch of schools competing at different sites and at the end, 3 from each site are picked to move on to the next round. The only rules are that the play cannot be a musical and can only be performed by high school students.
“We get up as early as 5:30 to get on the bus and go to the location we are performing at. The first show starts around 9am and basically every hour there is a new play. Afterwards there is a dinner, dancing and awards. We go home around 11pm." Daly explains. 

By: Laura Lombardi

Featured Student: Paris Peterson

Paris Peterson is a junior at Melrose High who has recently entered a short film contest with a three minute film about the common fire hazards which happen in everyone's households. The video includes acting from his friends and some easy steps anyone should take to prevent house fires. Paris entered this contest after his TV teacher made it an assignment to make a fire safety video, and encouraged the students to enter the contest held by the State Department of Fire Services. Prizes for the contest include gift cards and other benefits for the high school's TV production. Even before entering the contest, Paris always had an interest in film making. "It's definitely something I've been looking into ever since I started acting in student films. There's a lot of freedom in the field. Something I'm attracted to," Paris says.
His involvement with film making started when he was a kid living in South Boston, improvising skits with his siblings and filming them. Paris also enjoyed acting in the skits, so he began theatre. When he moved to Melrose in third grade, him and his brother, Dakota, started making skate videos. Paris's involvement with theatre and film making has had a huge influence on working on his own material. Not only does Paris enjoy film making, he also enjoys acting in his friends' films. Acting in these films for colleges led Paris to begin making films himself. Paris says that "taking the knowledge from that and TV class have driven me in a new direction of thinking cinematically. Experience can only lead to improvement." In addition to his brother Dakota, who is currently in college for ion, Paris's uncle and cousins are in the filmmaking business. After the competition is over, Paris is going to Iceland with friends this summer and hopes to make a short film while there. "Regardless of me winning, bringing audiences something meaningful through film is what I plan to do for quite some time."

By: Megan Wolley

Battle of the Bands results are in!

The results are in for the Virtual Battle of the Bands competition at Melrose High School: Lilah Drafts-Johnson took the gold for her original song “Of Wood & Stone”. The young musician, who had over 2,400 views on YouTube, made it to the second round of the competition in a close second to the runner-ups, Jump The Ship. When it came down to the school wide vote, however, Lilah came out on top.
“‘Of Wood & Stone’ was one of the [songs] that came very quickly to me” explains Lilah when asked about the song she performed “it probably took me about half an hour to write lyrics initially”. The young artist writes a lot and says that music will always be a part of her life.
Unlike most people however, Lilah loves to perform. “I really enjoy sharing my music and getting feedback”. Writing a song is something that comes easier to some than to others, but performing is a whole different talent. Being comfortable onstage requires confidence and that can carry you far.

The Virtual Battle of the Bands will return next year with a whole new competition, new acts and new songs; until next year, rock out MHS.

By: Maddie Forsberg 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Mock Trial

            For over fifteen years Mock Trial has been a club at Melrose High. Recently, this nation-wide competition in which students argue real-life cases in front of a judge in a courthouse has increased in popularity.
            Melrose High’s mock trial team is competing in region nine of the Mock Trial competition. They play against neighboring districts and 140 cities and towns in Massachusetts. In these competitions Melrose competed against Everett High, Lynn Classical, Lynn English, Lynn Vocational, Malden Catholic, Malden High, Medford High, Revere High, and Winthrop High. “It’s like March Madness: broken up into brackets,” says Mr. Alperen, a Melrose High English teacher and the coach of Melrose High’s mock trial team.
            The trials are created by real lawyers and officials, and were real cases at one point. The cases presented by the mock trial teams are heard in front of real judges.
            Mr. Alperen explained how this year is a “civil case” and the “burden of proof lies on the plaintiff. These cases are tougher to prove.”
            Mr. Alperen described how television gives the audiences the illusion that cases are solved easily. “However, it’s very complicated with a lot of procedures.” Mr. Alperen claims that it is very rewarding when “your team wins a case because you’ve worked so hard.”
            There are thirteen students at Melrose High on the mock trial team this year: Matt Cornelius, Jack Eccles, Marco Garofalo, Claire Halderman, Olivia Izzi, Emma Leyne, Connor Locke, Connor Meade, Antonia Penta, Mike Polcari, Aidan Swan, Ian Swan, and Lily Tucci. Ian Swan and Jack Eccles are the captains. The students practice their parts at least two hours a week.
            The Melrose High mock trial team had a scrimmage at BC High Saturday, December 14th. There was no official scoring, but Mr. Alperen believes BC High outscored Melrose High.
            “We found our strengths and we definitely have stars in the making.” Mr. Alperen said.
            Melrose’s first meet against Everett on January 23rd at the Lynn courthouse ended in a loss, but the team claimed a victory against Revere on January 27th. The team faced Winthrop on February 3rd, but lost after the judge gave Winthrop the win.
            “That’s called ‘subjective ruling,’ and the judge felt [Winthrop] went more smoothly.” Mr. Alperen said.
            The reason the judge felt this way was mainly because Melrose had a last minute change in position due to an illness. Connor Locke took over for Emma Leyne. Mr. Alperen said the case was exceptional because the meet resulted in a tie even with the last minute changes.
             “Most of these trials seem to favor one side over the other and this year they favored the side of the plaintiff.” Mr. Alperen said, explaining how Melrose beat Revere. “Not only did we win on points, but we argued a better case.”
            Melrose completed the preliminary round with a score of 1-2, and Melrose did not advance into the next round.
            “We definitely established ourselves as an affordable ‘firm’.” Mr. Alperen said.
             By: Christian Hashem

Guide to Netflix: The Carrie Diaries

Taking place in 1984, “The Carrie Diaries” is the story of 17 year old Carrie Bradshaw falling in love with Manhattan. Based off of the novel written by Candice Bushnell, the series is a prequel to the beloved “Sex and The City”, although viewers do not need to see “Sex in the City” to be able to follow it. Developed by Amy B. Harris and airing on The CW in 2012, Season one of the light hearted drama can be found on Netflix, while season two is currently airing. The pilot starts off by introducing viewers to Carrie's hectic home life on her first day of junior year. Her father, Tom, is now a single dad raising Carrie and her rebellious sister, Dorritt, after their mother recently passed away. School was difficult for Carrie with all the pitiful looks she was receiving, but she had three friends to rely on for support. Her friends West, Mouse, and Maggie all have their own side stories during the series, as well. But it starts off first with Carrie, AnnaSophia Robb, taking an internship at a law firm in the city; leading her away from her small suburban Connecticut town, her family, and her first love, Sebastian Kydd, played by Austin Butler.

By: Olivia Terranova

Guide to Netflix: Supernatural

I recommend, no, I command you to watch the riveting tv show Supernatural. Created by Robert Singer, Supernatural follows two brothers who criss-cross the country, hunting evil and paranormal creatures. At first, this show seems like your common crime tv show, but after three episodes you will be hooked. The Winchester brothers, Sam and Dean, were raised into the family business of hunting after their mother was brutally murdered by a demon. When Dean’s life is on the line and he is hours away from death, John gives his life to this same yellow-eyed demon to save his son. His last words were to Dean, telling him that one day, he might need to kill Sam. They later find out this was because on the night of Mary Winchester’s death, the yellow-eyed demon was in Sam’s nursery to turn Sam into one of his “psychic children.” In other words, he has had demon blood pumping through his veins since he was six months old. Knowing what this demon is capable of, John knew that the demon part of Sam would one day takeover and turn him evil, if they did not kill the demon who did this to him in time. Meanwhile, Sam and Dean have to continue looking for and hunting down evil creatures such as ghosts, ghouls, vampires, demons, zombies, djinn, shape shifters, werewolves, etc.

By: Megan Wolley

Fire Safety Video Competition

            At the end of last year, a number of TV students here at Melrose High School entered a statewide video competition.  Sponsored by the Massachusetts Association of Safety and Fire Educators, the competition challenged Massachusetts high school students to create an educational video about the dangers of fires.  Each video had to be between one and three minutes in length, contain several “tidbits” of information, such as statistics and advice on fire safety, and be well researched (the statistics have to be legitimate).  There are a few other rules that they have to follow.  For example, the participants could not actually film real fires, as that would be unsafe.  Instead they had to use copyright-free and public domain stock footage.  They were judged on a rubric scaling seven categories from one to four points.  For the most part, the categories were mostly about accuracy of facts and making the video creative as well as fitting  the requirements.
            Naturally, because it is a competition, there are prizes.  There are three prizes and three “honorable mention” awards.  A total of three hundred and fifty dollars are given out to the winners.  First place receives two hundred dollars in Best Buy gift cards, split among the group members, and their school receives a brand new camera for filming future videos.  The second and third place groups receive one hundred dollars and fifty dollars, respectively, also in Best Buy gift cards. The three honorable mentions do not receive prizes.
            Melrose has four finalist teams in the competition, each of which seems to have a shot.  The Imprint was able to interview two of the competitors; Quinn Wilkins and Addison Dowell.  Just from these two there is a large and visible difference in the teams.   Quinn Wilkins said that it took was about two hours of research, scripting, and filming to make his video, and one hour additional hour to edit.  On the other hand, Addison Dowell’s group took about five or six hours researching, scripting, and filming, and as much as ten hours editing.  Quinn Wilkins believes that while he himself does not have a great chance, that Melrose will win two of the six places. Addison Dowell claims that his video has a very good chance of winning.  If he wins, Wilkins says he would probably get a brand new 50mm lens for his camera, and Dowell gave no comment.
            If you would like to find the videos, you can find them at the youtube channel Melrose High TV. They are titled Burn Prevention Awareness: Second Chance, Burn Prevention Awareness: Cooking Safety, Burn Prevention Awareness: Radio Station Fire Awareness, and Burn Prevention Awareness: Alone in the Kitchen. 
         By: Duncan McLeod  

State of the Computers

Here at Melrose High we have learned to adapt to things not working, breaking, or being from the stone age. The physical building is probably giving all of us exotic diseases that we will not fully feel the effects of until we are all too far gone. We put up with windowless triangular-shaped classrooms that change from stuffy, muggy, and intolerable in the warmer months to cold, harsh, and unbearable in the winter. We put up with eating lunch at times other people refer to as “brunch” or “early dinner.”  We have lived through gas leaks, bomb threats, and days that should have been snow days. We have learned a new schedule after following the same one for most of our high school careers.  We have embraced all that has been thrown at us; the good, the bad, and the very, very ugly. Melrose High has been a challenge to many, presenting obstacles and creating stress for those who try wholeheartedly to survive. 
Taking journalism has been one of the best decisions of my high school career. I have taken the class for two years. With each year I have learned new, interesting, and important things about reporting and news in general. For those who don't know what we do in journalism, we put out a paper every few months. We also update a blog. Becasue we live in the twenty first century, we use computers to type, edit, and put together our work for our blog and paper. But as many of you may notice, the journalism class is rarely in the resource center using the computers. That is because the English department has their own special computer lab. I know, it is pretty exciting and cool. But anyone who has actually entered that computer lab located in Room 328 would know that those computers rarely work. They are older than all of our grandparents combined, and probably enjoyed some time with the dinosaurs.
The computers, when and if they ever turn on, work, but very slowly. You can almost open the internet and Microsoft almost lets you type without a glitch every ten seconds. But when these computers are turned off, they take forever to turn on. And I'm not kidding when I say forever. We have about five computers in that lab that actually “work.” But “work” is an ambiguous word.
I was curious about the efficiency of our dear computers, so I tested them. First I turned all the computers off, then back on. I timed how long it took for them to start. A new computer takes less than two minutes to turn on. The computers in the blue or red lab take about four, or maybe five, minutes to turn on completely. After they are on, it doesn’t take very long to either open the internet or Microsoft. So I went through every computer in the English lab, turned them fully off and then timed how long it takes for them to fully load. You might be thinking that it couldn't possibly take that long, but the quickest computer takes about sixteen minutes to load. Now that means turning it on, going through the control-alt-delete page, and then eventually opening up Microsoft takes sixteen minutes. You might not think sixteen minutes is a long time to load a computer. But when classes are fifty-seven minutes, and realistically you take away seven minutes for the beginning or end of class to settle in or pack up you are left with fifty minutes. Now take away sixteen minutes to load your computer. Now you are at thirty-four minutes. Take at least another ten minutes to open the internet and Microsoft. That leaves twenty-four minutes. Now quick! Start an article or finish the one you have been working on. Don’t forget to save it or try to e-mail it before the bell rings and you need to run off to your next class. It is impossible to accomplish any noticeable amount of work in this time frame.
All this ranting does have a point, I promise. My anger is not necessarily the inefficiency of the computers, but rather the lack of recognition of this. At this point I would like to take a second and say I am not blaming the administration. But at the same time, I'm not sure they realize how awful some of the supplies we have are. There is not much we can do about the physical building, unless we literally tear it down, but students should be provided with computers that work. I don’t want to point fingers because maybe there are other reasons why we do not have better computers. I just do not believe this is the best the school can provide for us.
By: Elisa Lemack

Important Dates for Seniors

Senior Deadlines
Internship Meeting – TBA
Senior Paper Due – April 4th
Start of Internship – April 7th
Payment for yearbook – March 15th
Pre-Prom meeting – March 31st
Completed 48 hours of Community Service – May 1st
Diploma Decision - TBA
Awards Night - TBA

Senior Week
Graduation Rehearsal – May 27th (8:30 am)
Prom – May 27th (Bus check-in 4:00)
Yearbook signing – May 28th (subject to change)
Six Flags – May 29th             
Graduation – May 30th (ceremony starts at 3:30)
Grad Night – May 30th (doors opens at 10 pm)

By: Anna Garofalo

Monday, February 10, 2014

Valentines Day Treats

Valentines day is fast approaching and some of you may be frantically running to Walgreens looking for cheesy cards, teddy bears and gross chocolates that are the only things left on the 13th. As nothing really catches your eye at the store, its all either too expensive or to unoriginal, you need to find a gift, quick. As many of you know, the best way to anyone's heart is food. This quick and easy recipe will make you significant other and you wallet love you this holiday.

These marshmallows dipped in chocolate are sure to make your sweetheart have a sweet tooth.

What you need:
Chocolate Chips
Sprinkles ( or any other topping; m&ms, crushed butterfingers etc)

Step 1: Put chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and place in the microwave, melt until smooth

Step 2:  While chocolate is melting place marshmallows on wax paper on a cookie sheet, when chocolate is melted, dip the marshmallows in the chocolate, covering about have of the marshmallow

Step 3: Before placing the marshmallow down, dip the marshmallow and chocolate in the festive sprinkles or toppings

Step 4: place the marshmallow chocolate side down and let freeze for 20 minutes

By: Charlene Feeley

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Poetry Out Loud

           On Tuesday, January 14th, twenty-seven Melrose High students recited poems they had memorized as part of the annual Poetry Out Loud competition. Five English teachers judged the students based on accuracy, among other criteria. Senior Lilah Drafts-Johnson was declared the winner, and freshman Alana Williams was the runner-up.  The results were announced on Wednesday, January 15th.
           Melrose High School has participated in the Poetry Out Loud competition for about four years. In the past, only four or five teachers sent students to the school wide competition, and only about twelve to fifteen students participated. Mrs. Stearns, the lead teacher for MHS, wanted more students to participate this year to “increase the quality of the performances.” On the week of January 7th, English teachers held classroom competitions. The winners from the classroom competitions went on to compete in the school-wide competition.
            Students who win their school competitions need to prepare three poems for the state and national levels. One must be twenty-five lines or fewer, one must be written before the 20th century, and the student can choose another poem as their third poem. All poems must be from the Poetry Out Loud anthology. The anthology can be found online at
            Mrs. Stearns believes it is “valuable for students to memorize poems” because then they “own” that piece of poetry, in a way. She uses Nelson Mandela to illustrate the benefits of memorizing poetry. Mandela memorized poems and recited them in prison for entertainment. One of the poems he memorized and recited to other prisoners at Robben Island, “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley, is part of the Poetry Out Loud anthology.
            Junior Megan Wolley, a member of the Imprint staff, said the competition made her go outside her comfort zone. She recited “The Maid’s Lament,” by Walter Savage Landor. She chose the poem because she had “never done a poem about mourning” and she wanted to try something different.
            Winner Lilah Drafts-Johnson recited “Cartoon Physics, Part 1” by Nick Flynn. Runner-up Alana Williams recited “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” by Langston Hughs.
            The Massachusetts competition will be on March 1st, 2014. The location has yet to be determined.

By: Emma Morrison