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Denebola » Shakti Nochur http://www.denebolaonline.net The Award-Winning, Official School Newspaper of Newton South High School, Newton, MA Fri, 17 Jun 2011 02:00:19 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.0.2 Volume 48: The Greatest Thing that Ever Lived http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/02/11/volume-48-the-greatest-thing-that-ever-lived/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/02/11/volume-48-the-greatest-thing-that-ever-lived/#comments Wed, 11 Feb 2009 05:38:18 +0000 Jason Agress http://www.denebolaonline.net/?p=3767 As our advisor constantly reminds us, once you become a Deneber, you have essentially made a life long commitment to the newspaper. And while this sentiment may be true, the reality is that this is the last issue that will have our four names in large, bold print in the top left corner of page A2. This was the last time we had to agonize over an idea for Fold and the last time we were forced to grapple with a sensitive article or idea.

So while Denebola has, numerous times, caused each of us a combination of frustration, misery, and pain, we canít imagine what our high school careers would have been- and will bewithout it. Winston Churchill once said that “success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. 

Over the course of our last eight issues, we have experienced ups and downs that would boggle a pogo stick champion’s mind (blame Dan for the poor analogies), but I think that all four of us can safely give Denebola credit for teaching us how to deal with our biggest accomplishments, as well as some downright failures.

One good legacy Volume 47 left us with was the hugely useful position of Senior Administrative Assistant. Dan will pay someone $10 if they can explain what that means.

Jagress spent the majority of his time telling people he was sorry and saying “no, no at times that generally made no sense. He made up for it, though, by single-handedly managing business each month. Oh, and he’s the only kid at South who can claim to be an expert at bulk mailing.

Shakti spent the majority of her time with no shoes on (much to Mr. White’s dismay) and taking the brunt of countless Indian jokes. For the record, she would like to inform the ignorant Denebola staff that India is not an inferno year round and “Because you’re Indian is an explanation that only functions within the walls of 9202.

Our staff members helped us through the good and the bad. Julia Lytle threw a legendary party that even Mr. White couldn’t help but make fun of her for. Her fellow Features editor, Claire, alternated between obsessing over a pink plastic pig and hiding Dan’s belongings. At one point, she even convinced Dan to call Antoine and accuse him of stealing his keys.

The Tye family used to nearly single-handedly sponsor the paper, but they took a hit when the Schwartz family made a bid on the other back page. Andrew, however, more than made up for it with his colorful language (Denebola is not a locker room!), unparalleled laying abilities, and good looks.

It’s possible that Global, a questionable section at the best of times, could not have been less productive. Between Christine dedicating her time to posting photos on her wall of beautiful men and Amrita attempting to straighten her hair, only to disconnect the Edits computer and two hours worth of work (none of us have heard Ben growl louder than when that happened), it’s a wonder they managed to finish their strenuous page and a half section each month. We would also like to shout out to DGabes who miraculously graduated high school after his junior year and brought piece to the Middle East.

Arts staff became so close that we, at times, had difficulty distinguishing between them (thereís definitely a Julia, Emily, Erica, and Diana, but which is which?). Nicole Repina somehow drew every graphic for the newspaper while simultaneously juggling about ten AP classes.

Becca wins National Speech Tournaments in her free time, and brings a mastery of Photoshop to the table that might even rival JKuo’s. And Nate and Dan discovered much of Newton while driving around, attempting to take pictures for that whole override deal. Where was the other news editor, you might ask? He was color-coding the recycling (at least it wasn’t shoes this year, Dhan!).

We learned the hard way that the Denebola room has far too many malfunctioning computers, and we were all surprised to learn that Mr. White is now a German Ambassador. The staff as a whole became experts in ordering hundreds of medium caramel iced coffees with cream and sugar (thank you Dan), and, over the course of the volume, we have ordered enough scallion pancakes to clog all the arteries of a small country.

So as we pass on the torch to a group of young (yes, we aged a lot over these past months), fresh juniors, we can’t help but admit that we will miss this. We will miss stern talks from our Advisor and days when we don’t get home until 11p.m.  And even though we pretend like we don’t care, there will doubtlessly be a gaping hole in all our lives where Denebola once was.

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Decorations melt chilly hearts http://www.denebolaonline.net/2008/12/17/decorations-melt-chilly-hearts/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2008/12/17/decorations-melt-chilly-hearts/#comments Wed, 17 Dec 2008 20:13:29 +0000 Shakti Nochur http://denebolaonline.net/denebola/?p=536 Let me preface this by saying that I’m not from a family full of Christmas fanatics. I will not celebrate Christmas this year with presents under a tree and carols playing in the background as cookies bake in the oven. Nothing against such people (I’m a huge fan of the cheer), but that’s not me nor is it my family.

Actually, I’m a Hindu whose family thinks that the consumerism that Christmas perpetuates is despicable. Although my parents indulged my older brother and me with a Christmas tree when we were younger, they have since given up on the idea. They were even reluctant to agree to buy me a present at all this year. (I’m getting a Blackberry. Success.)

I’m here to argue that Christmas, despite the mall frenzy it causes, my parents’ dislike for it, and its religious affiliation, is a wonderful holiday for all of us, even the Hindus.

What I want to ask my parents every time they diss this glorious holiday is how they can do anything but smile when they drive down a street whose lawns are lit up with reindeer, inflatable Santas, and icicle lights. Why don’t I ask? Because they would likely say that it’s cheesy and stupid. I respectfully disagree. I think it’s charming.

I cannot help but be excited when I see buildings decorated with paper snowflakes hanging from the ceiling and red and green wreaths and trees. I love when Starbucks switches over to their red and white holiday cups. Yes, this is consumerism at its best (or worst) – the fact that I know that Starbucks switches over in October (a little premature for Christmas maybe) means I definitely spend too much time and money buying grande non-fat chais – but to me there is not much negativity in the smiles that the festive cups bring to my face (and to those of my fellow Starbucks addicts).

Honestly though, I’m not a total nut. I’m not even that big a fan of Christmas music. But the cheer that Christmas brings is positive in every way. Some may say that it’s holiday spirit, and for some it’s true that Hanukkah or Kwanza may be the cause of the winter cheer, but for those of us who like finding some happiness in the dismal cold of winter and who have no religious holiday in December, the red and green of Christmas is what saves us.

And Christmas day itself, even without a tree, is something that I cannot help but look forward to. Christmas has morphed into a universal holiday, and an excuse to shuffle around my house and spend time with my family. I get to sit in front of the fire and pretend that my parents really like Christmas. It is the perfect reason to stay in the house and be cozy, knowing that it is a holiday and Christians, Hindus, Jews, atheists, and plenty of people of other religions and belief systems across the country are sitting around doing the exact same thing.

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Turn off the cameras http://www.denebolaonline.net/2007/12/19/turn-off-the-cameras/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2007/12/19/turn-off-the-cameras/#comments Wed, 19 Dec 2007 14:42:21 +0000 Shakti Nochur http://denebolaonline.net/wordpress/?p=167 Opposing Viewpoints: CON
Allow Cameras?

By Shakti Nochur

Nobody likes the idea of being watched by somebody without their knowledge. Unfortunately, that seems to be what administrators had in mind when they allowed cameras hidden as smoke detectors to be installed over the summer.Inserting hidden security cameras is by no means the way to protect our school.

By not informing students about the existence and positioning of these cameras, security at South was hoping that if and when a crime (whether it be theft or something more severe) occurred, they would be able to deal with the situation accordingly given the footage taken from the cameras.

This, however, fails to deal with the greater problem behind crime in high schools: why it is happening in the first place and what can be done to deter it. The proper way to deal with crime in the school environment is to provide adequate counseling and education. While this may sound as though it is steering away from more severe and concrete measures, these are the only efforts that can be taken to prevent crime before it happens.

Hidden cameras only handle the situation after the fact. Preventative measures other than cameras are far more important than punishing the guilty student after the crime has been committed.

Cameras have not been proven to prevent crimes. London has 10,000 cameras, but according to The Times of London, researchers have found that the cameras prevented crime in only one of 14 locations studied. Furthermore, researchers have found that police in London are no more likely to solve a crime in areas with cameras as compared with areas without cameras. With regard to the continued theft that seems to be going on at South (especially from the girls’ locker room), the school should not be as concerned with catching the culprits as they should be with questioning why these culprits are stealing in the first place.

While I am not advocating the existence of cameras in our hallways, the least that South could have done, if they were absolutely necessary, is inform the students before their installation.

Ultimately, however, these cameras are not necessary or justified at South. Considering the competitive and often stressful environment that many students face, the school ought to offer proper counseling to help kids who may be inclined to commit crimes. The answer to crime in schools is not watching students behind their backs, it is to deal with the issue head on and communicate.

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