Friday, February 12, 2016

Young men embrace gender role reversal at home

Juliana Discher I Staff Writer
Some mothers are bringing home the bacon, while fathers are staying home to cook it.
Fifty years ago, the terms “stay-at-home dad” and “female breadwinner” were unheard of. Advanced Placement Psychology teacher Paul Reedy said gender roles are society’s expectations of how males and females should behave, dress, and even think. Reedy said that our nation is becoming more accepting of fluidity in them.
“As someone who grew up in the 1970s, I have been able to witness a transformation in this country about gender roles and the expectations,” Reedy said. “It was a slow evolution, but you have to acknowledge the fact that women are actually outnumbering men in number of college degrees at this point.”
The Washington Post proved this statistic mentioned by Reedy; in the 2009-2010 academic year, women earned 57.4 percent of all bachelor’s degrees.
Sophomore Anna Estes intends to have a math or science career when she is older. Estes said she is proud of the fact that in modern society, women aren’t forced to be monetarily dependent on men.
“I have been raised to to follow my dreams and one of those include finding a career I love,” Estes said. “It’s really cool that we don’t have to grow up in a society where women have to be financially reliant on men.”
This is due to the fact, Estes said, that women are being encouraged more to do well in school and have higher aspirations.
“It’s great we are encouraging everyone, not just one gender, to strive for goals in their career,” Estes said. “Men and women are both realizing that they can do whatever they want to achieve their dreams; whether it’s staying at home or finding a career that they love and that provides money for their family.”
Junior Jared Gworek has his heart set on being a stay-at-home father. Gworek said he came to this conclusion when he realized he enjoys interacting with children.
“My extended family has a lot of young children and it’s really fun hanging out with them at family parties,” Gworek said. “Forming a deeper and more personal connection with my future children appeals to me. I would also like to go on wild dad adventures with other stay-at-home dads.”
Junior Danny Mackzum said he wouldn’t mind if his wife was the breadwinner of the family.
“Honestly, it wouldn’t really bother me because if she had a nice job that made a lot of money, then why would it?” Mackzum said. “I don’t understand why most men feel like they have to be the support system for the family.”
Sophomore Thomas Marriner’s father, Mathew Marriner, is a stay-at-home dad. Mathew said that for the most part, he’s accepted for deciding to stay at home.
“I have seen a few reactions from people along the line, but generally 99 percent of people these days accept that I am a stay-at-home dad or at least think it’s a normal type of thing.” Marriner said. “I can remember when I first told my father I was going to stay at home with Thomas he said, ‘Really? Are you sure you want to do that?’ I think that is just the generational difference.  He wasn’t trying to be insulting, he just didn’t quite understand. His job is a huge part of his identity.  I’m a big kid though, so I enjoy being around children. It works for me.”
Marriner said that acceptance of differences is the key to progression for society.
“I think that we are well on our way to expanding gender roles and accepting other people for who they are,” Marriner said. “Whatever role you carve out, as long as it’s a productive one in society  and you are a good person, then you’re able to live a happy life.”

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Venkatarao breaks four records for Rubik's Cube Solving


With fingers flying and algorithms meticulously memorized, junior Sreeram Venkatarao solved his way to the top.
Venkatarao broke national and continental records for blind Rubik’s Cube solving this past weekend at the Dixon Winter competition.
“There were four individual records that I broke,” Venkatarao said. “I not only broke the U.S. National Record, but also the North American Continental record, which includes the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Central America. This was for solving the 3x3x3 Rubik’s Cube blindfolded. On top of that, I also broke the U.S and North American Continental records for the 3x3 Blindsolving Average category. The average of my times was a 26.73 which was the best recorded time ever in the United States and North America.”
Venkatarao is currently ranked first in the United States and first in the continent for both single solve time and average time of three solves.
“Regarding average time for the 3x3x3 blindfolded solve, I’m ranked first in the US, first in the continent, and fourth in the world,” Venkatarao said. “For a single solve, my best time was a 25.19 which places me at first in the United States, first in the continent, and seventh in the world.”
Despite the busy schedule high school demands, Venkatarao said he still manages to practice his passion daily.
“This has taken a lot of long term prep; I’ve been doing it for eight years and blindsolving for seven years,” Venkatarao said. “It’s been consistent practicing. Junior year is busy, so I try to do at least twenty solves a day because that’s still adequate prep for me.”
Venkatarao said he is ecstatic about his accomplishment but knows there is more to come from him.
“After I got it, I was very happy,” Venkatarao said. “I’ve worked so hard and I’ve finally gotten to the top."
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Sunday, February 7, 2016

Cultures showcased at annual Taste of Mason

Juliana Discher I Staff Writer
Mason is a melting pot of culture, and residents took a dip into it at the Taste of Mason.
The Mason City Schools Diversity Council held this ninth annual event at Mason High School on Wednesday, February 3. All residents were welcome to attend and experience the food and customs of different cultures.
There was food from local Mason eateries that represent various ethnic backgrounds, including Aponte’s Pizzeria, Cazadores, Chan’s Asian Wok, Chateaux Beiruit, Golden Cincinnati Deli, Great Harvest Bread Co., L’Crepe, Noodles & Company, Quatman Cafe, Soho Japanese Bistro, Sweet Zone Bakery, The Mason Grill, Troy’s CafĂ©, and Zoup!.
Attendees were entertained with a variety of cultural showcases including Bollywood dance, Cincinnati Baila! Mexican Folkloric Dance, Chinese School Paper Cutting Girls, and more. MHS groups like Noteorious, the Comet Skippers, and the Drum Line also performed.
President of Comets Savings and Loan Juan Tramontin said the event couldn’t be possible without the combined effort of several clubs and groups at the high school, including all of the language honor societies.
“There were many clubs that participated like Spanish Honor Society and German Honor Society,” Tramontin said. “The bank had a pretty big piece in coordinating the games for the kids. We all worked together to make this a great event to bring the community together.”
Senior Emily Muff, a member of CS&L, played an integral role in preparing the passbook activity for kids.
“With the passbook station, kids would go around to every country, do an activity, and get it stamped,” Muff said. “Then they come back to us and we give them a peso. They can go into the bank and exchange their peso for six cents, which is what the conversion rate is. They can head into Comet Zone and buy candy with it.”
Muff said the event is beneficial for young kids to embrace the diversity we have in Mason.
“This event shows how we have people from so many backgrounds,” Muff said. “Plus, it’s cool for them to check out what the high school has to offer."
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