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2017 Summer Dare

summerdare(edited)All right RAHS students, it’s almost time for summer, and you know what that means! Staying at home, closing the curtains, and sitting on your laptop for three months straight. Okay, maybe a few of you actually have fun plans. But for the rest of you, who are already stocking up on Doritos, the Phoenix Flyer is here to give you incentive to get out the front door!


We’ve compiled a list of the best, most fun, enjoyable, happy-time-causing, good-memory-making, hallmark-movie-feeling, Instagram-worthy, big impact, summertastic things to do this break, and the goal is to complete as many as you can. Some dares are worth 1 point, and some are worth 2. The student who gets the most points will receive a 10-person pizza party when they return to school, and a feature about their summer adventure in the Phoenix Flyer!


To get points for completing dares, you must have evidence: either video or photographic. One dare per photo please! This can be submitted to the Phoenix Flyer (room 3530) in a printed scrapbook, a google folder shared with, or on a Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter account dedicated to the dare. Label which dare it is and how many points it’s worth. No photoshop! Submit by (date) for credit. Good luck, and HAGS!


1 Point:

  • Somersault all the way down a hill
  • Get a new hairstyle *
  • Recreate a scene from your favorite movie
  • Take a splash in the Seattle Center fountain
  • Ride the Seattle Center monorail
  • Make friends with a stranger’s dog
  • Attend an outdoor concert, play or movie
  • Invent a secret handshake
  • Hang upside-down at a playground
  • Sample the cuisine of a new culture
  • Climb a tree
  • Watch the sunset on a beach
  • Hug a creepy Museum of Flight mannequin
  • Eat a piece of fruit straight from the tree (or bush, whatever)
  • Bake a commemorative cake
  • Draw a sidewalk chalk mural
  • Make a dandelion flower crown
  • Explore a tide pool


2 Points:

  • Recreate the scene from Top Gun where Goose dies (has to be in the water)
  • Take a selfie with at least three of the Museum of Flight’s  “Astronauts on the Town”
  • Add an original gum sculpture to the Pike Place gum wall
  • Play house in an Ikea kitchen
  • Stage your future wedding proposal, wedding, or funeral
  • Ride something other than a skateboard or bike at a skatepark
  • Play dress-up at a thrift store
  • Learn a sweet new martial arts move
  • Stage a mime show in public
  • Organize or attend a flash mob
  • Dance to a street musician’s performance
  • Learn a circus craft (unicycle, trapeze, juggling, etc.)
  • Give someone a makeover
  • Make S’mores on a real campfire
  • Make a boat out of found materials and sail it (see directions in Issue 10 of the Phoenix Flyer)


Snark Attack

Do you know what everyone loves to the bottom of their heart space? High school parking lots. Do you know what their favorite thing about high school parking lots is? People who park like absolute jack@$$es.


I’m talking about the people who double park their beater cars and people who are trying to fix their daddy issues by pretending to be cool with their “nice” cars. I literally have no idea how they manage park so terribly as the spots are gigantic, but alas, they do. Here’s a really fun, super shocking never-heard-before newsflash: no one actually likes these people. If you are one of them, reevaluate your life choices, look deep inside yourself, and stop being you. Be someone else. When you do dumb stuff to your friends’ cars, like park 0.0002 inches away from them so they can’t get into their car, they don’t think that you’re cool or funny. They actually think that you are an irritating human being with little to no brain cells.  


A special message to those who are overly-confident in your car parking capabilities: the shark is not a snitch, though there have been many times when I, and many others, have felt the desire to rat you out. Also, you are so lucky that nobody has keyed “F OFF” into your car, or slashed your tires, or busted out your windows. (I have many more ideas than this.)


These people are hiding their insecurities behind their choices, so the rest of us should try to take pity on them. I know it’s hard. It’s easy to hate them and plot to ruin both their car and their day. Believe me, I know. But behind their entitled, narrow-minded, cocky, pompous, vain, lazy, annoying, arrogant, compulsive, impulsive, and inconsiderate behavior, there’s a little boy crying for help. That’s all that they are: sad little snot-nosed punks loving their cars because they can’t find any affection elsewhere.

Ground Control

Dear Ground Control,

Every time I park my car in the neat striped spot, people yell at me. I don’t understand why people are being so mean. What do I do?


Parking Perp


Dear Perp,

After much thought about your problem, and those who are mean to you (I really do mean the specific… sharks, perhaps), I have devised a three-part plan to help you avoid your car being keyed.

Step 1: Reevaluate your life choices. Do these people actually have a reason to be mad at you? No? Are you sure? Would a tow truck driver see your car and think “payday”?

Step 2: Put your car in a mundane regular spot. If you really need to be special THAT BADLY, bring some sidewalk chalk and decorate whatever spot your heart desires. That way it could be striped OR polka-dotted.

Step 3: If that doesn’t satisfy your need to piss people off, try double parking your best friend or your worst enemy.

I sincerely hope you get towed,

Ground Control


Dear Ground Control,

I have an AP test in a week and I haven’t gone to class all year. How do I get a 5 and pass my class?


Five or Failure


Dear Failure,

Hey friend. As someone who is actually you, here’s my plan for optimizing my test score. It works well, I promise: Attend class and try to stay awake (I know that’s difficult but it’s the first step). Listen to the teacher lecture, and wonder what’s going on, think “Am I even in the right classroom? What’s gravity?” Now’s the time to go into Illuminate to check if you’re actually supposed to be in this room (you’re probably in the right place). Now, take a moment to think about all the things you’ve done wrong. Did you forget to tell your mother that you love her this morning before you left? Did you feed the dog? Did you steal a french fry from your friend freshman year? Did you actually watch all three LOTR movies all the way through (I assume you did to avoid studying). Remember that time that you tripped up the stairs in front of your crush in the fourth grade? Yeah you do. Now, it’s time to either realize that you can’t do anything right and that you’re going to fail, or to start binging Crash Course videos (that’s how I passed AP Advice-Giving).

May someone up there have mercy on your soul,

Ground Control

Death by a Thousand Websites

Canvas. Illuminate. Pearson. Big History. Dot Info. Oh yeah, and Google Sites – lots and lots of Google Sites.


Okay, I get it – we’re a high-tech, 21st-century STEM school, in one of the country’s major technology hubs, and we have lots of technology, and we love technology, and technology is going to save the world and solve all our problems and make everything perfect for everyone forever, but can we PLEASE not scatter our class web sites and information to the far-flung corners of the internet? I’M TRYING TO STAY ORGANIZED HERE, PEOPLE! I’ve got two history web sites, a math web site, a science web site, two club web sites, three Google Accounts with fourteen overlapping folders of shared files, two Office 365 accounts (neither of which actually work), two district email addresses (neither of which use my name), an H: drive that requires my S- number (and can’t be accessed unless I’m on campus), three OneNote notebooks, and… and… and… I give up.


Just in case no one around here has ever figured this out, and they definitely haven’t, let me explain something: More technology is not the same thing as better technology, and using more technology does mean using technology better. Putting something on the web does not magically make it fancier, easier to use, or in any way more sophisticated or appealing, and I shouldn’t have a folder of 39578 bookmarks for my class websites.

Ground Control – FaceTime and Hangman

Dear Ground Control,

My sister is always on FaceTime really loudly with her friends and it’s really annoying, but I feel like it’s rude to ask her to stop.


Annoyed and Aggravated


Dear Aggravated,

I’m afraid there is only one plan of action for you to follow. Go live in a cave. Wander as far away from humanity as you can: I believe that’s somewhere in Kansas. Now, there aren’t actually any mountains in Kansas, so what you’re going to have to do is bring a very large rock with you. Your Uber driver probably will charge extra for this, so you should consider trying to find one in the mountains on your way to Kansas. Don’t worry about bringing anything else. Kansas has a lot of crafting supplies, since there’s nothing else to do. You won’t have any trouble finding the supplies to make your clothes and anything else you can just get from corn. Once you are there with your rock, you can carve out the inside of your rock (it’s customizable!!!) and begin your happy life of solitude.



Ground Control


Dear Ground Control,

Every time I play hangman with my friend, they choose words with no vowels. How do I get back at them?


Words with Frenemies


Dear Words with Frenemies,

I feel you, bro. This is actually something that I deal with. It’s what happens when you put more than one clever person in the same building. We all think we’re smarter than the next person, and clearly, hangman is the best way to show up the competition. Just to out all of you who think you’re clever, here are some words people will try to use to damage your pride.





















Now go forth and destroy people. It’s probably smart to use these words against people who don’t read my amazing work. You do you though.


Ground Control

Ground Control: Going Goth and Looking for Love

Dear Ground Control,

After how much I enjoyed the last class colors day, I decided that I like wearing all black. What are your tips to stay stylish while sporting this new goth look?


Aspiring Goth


Dear Goth,

You’ve come to the right place. As a fashion icon, I am single-handedly capable of bring back goth.

For your reference, here are some ground rules:

  • Rule number one and by far most important: Always go for the darkest pair of jeans. That light gray won’t cut it. It should be the color of the pupils of your enemy before you slay them in battle.
  • It’s important to remember to look the same every day. I do not recommend wearing the same shirt/pants every day, but you must limit the variation in your appearance. People will think “how do they always wear the same outfit, but still smell and look like they did laundry?” Maximum style achieved, and minimum time spent on deciding what to wear.
  • You may be tempted to wear short sleeves during the summer, but in order to be a true goth, you must disregard the possibility of heat stroke and never show your arms. Showing skin is weakness. People should never know what your elbow truly looks like.

Bonus points: Dye your hair black, like your soul.

If you’re not ready to go full goth, here are some tips to spice up the all black:

  • Try a red flannel, like the blood of your enemies. Or like the hearts of men, whatever your cup of tea is.
  • Add a little lace. This may seem counterproductive, but it adds to your angsty appearance. Like you’re torn between two things and can’t make a decision, and that’s why your soul is so tortured.


Ground Control

Dear Ground Control,

Will you be my Valentine?


Loser in Love


Dear Loser,

It’s not me, it’s you. If you’re resorting to asking someone out via Google Forms you clearly have something going on that I, a beautiful and majestic butterfly, do not want to get tangled up in. I get that I am a total catch, and that anyone would love to have me be their Valentine, but I’m waiting for someone who will sweep me off my feet. I’m talking about someone who will release doves white as snow and butterflies as blue as the night sky from a golden cage while serenading me with an original song about how amazing I am. If you want to win me over, you have to dazzle me. I suppose if you’d like to take my advice and try to sway me in your favor, call the number below.


Ground Control

206 382 5633

Snark Attack: Finals Week and Procrastination

Now that finals are over, we can take a quick time-out to mourn the loss of sleep and friends due to irritability from finals week. It was inevitable, everyone knew it was coming, but what they weren’t expecting were the four day finals for a single class and the teachers who try to be original by giving finals the week before finals week. The gesture is nice, we appreciate that they don’t want to give finals all at once but when all of the teachers decide to give them a week early, it didn’t end so well.


How did it end you might ask? Maybe you didn’t get it too bad this time around but the rest of us are broke from coffee and energy drinks, with bags under our eyes, tensed shoulders, and a resting B face.


Finals week is made up of four parts:


  1. Procrastination: “Later this week.” You’re in denial.
  2. Phase two; when “later this week” turns into “oh $#!&, that’s due tomorrow.” It’s then when you realize that procrastination, one of the most valuable skills RAHS has taught us, really screwed you over. You shoot a quick “thank you” prayer to all the homework and group projects that taught you waiting till the last minute is no problem. It’s during this phase that you promise yourself this will never happen again, but immediately proceed to tell yourself you’ll put off this promise until the semester is over.
  3. Then comes phase three, cramming. Everyone crams differently but it usually consists of hundreds of flashcards, quizlets, and using Skype for Business for what it was actually intended for. These all-nighters out of nowhere turned into you draining your bank account because that Starbucks a block away has made filling your system with caffeine way too easy. It’s during this phase that the phrase “triple shot” becomes more familiar and “decaf” becomes more foreign than that language class you’re stressing about.
  4. If you’ve survived phases one through three, you make it to the actual tests, which can be spread out over days or even two weeks. Symptoms of phase four may include oversharing about tests you’re stressed about to everyone you meet, even that weird person who strikes up a conversation with you on the Metro. Passing period feels too short as you spend it wondering if you made the right decision to come to school this day–this week really. You’re seated now and tuning out your teacher telling you that “you should be able to do well based on everything you’ve learned.” The next part is all a blur, different for everyone but when it’s over you’re still as stressed as you were to begin with — maybe it’s the impending red bar you might discover on Illuminate that won’t leave your mind.


Whats worse? Sometimes this painful cycle is concentrated to a week, but some teachers droned it on for two, maybe even three weeks? I mean, why not just treat it like a band aid? Quick, still painful, but quick. Then before you know it, you were either blowing off steam at Winter Ball, or boycotting it and loathing the tradition while binge-watching Shameless. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: teachers, we appreciate the thought but, exams week has infected pretty much the bigger portion of January.
Now that we’ve made it to second semester, we can all be thankful Spring Break is one day closer than yesterday. We can all take a moment to meditate and realize one simple fact: we are all very, unavoidably, doomed. What I would suggest is that you consider homeschooling, alternative education paths and contacting your congressmen of choice for any further complaints. Happy hunting and best of luck for your recovery.

Ground Control – December 2016

Dear Ground Control,

My friends have been using my student ID to print out their school papers. Just a week or two back, two of them printed out 2 full-size SAT practice tests! This is causing me emotional distress. I don’t know what to do. I can’t print anymore.


Betrayed by the Bestie


Dear Bestie,

You need better friends. Get new friends. You may have noticed that I called you bestie–it’s because we are friends now. I have blessed you with my presence (you don’t actually get to know who I am, but you can say “Wow, I’m homies with Ground Control! Amazing. I’m #blessed”). Here is how you make new friends that you can talk to in person.

1: Ditch your old friends by luring them into a cave system in Alaska and then leave them there. Call the school and pretend to be their parents. Excuse their absence because they have gone on a 5-year-long study in the Gobi Desert.

2: Scope out your new homies. Bring some ferns into the building so you can hide in them. Get some high tech binoculars, and wait in various locations around the building for your new homie to appear. Make yourself known to him or her..

3: Invite them on a trip to Alaska. Try not to run into your old cave friends. If you do, try to explain why you ditched them. If your new friend does not understand, repeat step 1.

4: Make hot cocoa with your new bestie. Bond with them. Make friendship bracelets. Do not tell them your student ID number.


Your bestie,

Ground Control


Dear Ground Control,

So I like this guy and and I thought he liked me too. We had a really close moment and it was really cool. But ever since we had that moment, he’s been giving me the cold shoulder and being short with his answers when I try to start conversations. What should I do?


Flirty and Forgotten


Dear Forgotten,

He is probably just nervous. Boys tend to get confused about their feelings. Don’t worry though. Maybe he is just thinking things through, which is actually a very kind act on his part. Even though you might not want to think about it right now, he might not have felt the same and is putting distance between you two because he doesn’t want to lead you on and he cares about you. The alternative is that he is actually just useless, although I wouldn’t jump to that conclusion too soon.   


If he is actually useless, don’t fret! If he doesn’t want to have another special moment with you, it’s his loss. Have faith and confidence in yourself because you deserve someone who wants to be with you as much as you want to be with them. Confidence will intimidate some men, but that’s great because it will weed out the weaklings that you don’t want anyway.


Much love!

Ground Control

Snark Attack – December 2016

Okay, we all know that the flu is going around, and because of that Mr. Snark is out of business until hibernation season ends. For now, it’s time to deal with me, the Meme Shark, and boy oh boy, we’re gonna get down to business to defeat the puns. That’s right; I’m going to tackle the three banes of our school society: rules that aren’t enforced, rules that aren’t enforceable, and rules that are just plain stupid. You’ll be walking through a day in the life of a memer at RAHS trying to express discomfort with the dilemmas of the stupid rules she/he is faced with. Bring on the memes, baby.


Dress Code – Rule Level: Not Enforced

First of all, I’m pretty sure that no one in their right mind wakes up every morning and thinks, “Hey, I’m planning on getting dress coded today!” Yeah; no. It’s sad to realize that people are being singled out of the herd while others are ignored for breaking the same rule. Come on, what’s the deal here? If the school is going to make “strict” rules depicting the importance of professionalism, then shouldn’t they do a better job of making sure the rule is followed? Many people here have actually gotten away with wearing something breaking the dress code a good number of times without being called out.


U turns – Rule Level: Unenforceable


Your parents wake up like any other day to drop you off. As you’re pulling in into Phoenix Drive, you’re hit by the realization that you have to go all the way around the parking lot and back to the front to get dropped off from the car instead of doing a U-turn, because everyone is in danger of crashing their cars when there’s no one around. In addition to its lack of sense, the rule concerning U-turns is just plain unenforceable. To really enforce it, RAHS would have to hire Dwayne Johnson to monitor the front of the school, which would amazing, but expensive overkill.


Computer rules in general – Rule Level: Just Plain Stupid


BREAKING NEWS: A large majority of RAHS students, if not all of us, are breaking the tech contract right now. It’s all because of some of the dumb and unenforced rules placed in the contract in the first place. Carrying papers in your laptop case and charging your computer at school are examples tech contract violation. How about make some rules that can actually be enforced for a start? It’s not like teachers are actually going to bust every student for carrying papers in our case; it’s convenient for us, and I’m pretty sure they know it is too.


Eating on campus


What is the deal? Last year the rule was that there was no food and beverages allowed to be consumed on the third floor because of the rats, and now there’s no food allowed on the first floor… because of the rats. Guys, just face it; rats are probably going to show up anyway, regardless of what we do. Good thing our school is full of snakes to take care of them.


Printers – Rule Level: Unenforced
I’d like to start off by saying that putting a limit on the amount that you print to reduce spam and paper waste is a brilliant idea. In fact, I think that this rule would work so much more better if only it wasn’t so easy to waste paper by “unsecured” print jobs (hint hint: third floor printer). Last year, there wasn’t a giant pile of papers on the printers on a daily basis, while this year, the newfound knowledge of promote print has everyone stupefied to print in mass quantities without double checking. I know it is convenient sometimes, but seriously, save the plants everyone: they deserve a life too.

Open post

Incoming freshmen explain the admission lottery

The class of 2020 is one of the most racially diverse in RAHS’ history.
The class of 2020 is one of the most racially diverse in RAHS’ history.

The established RAHS community is quite familiar with the lottery system, but the class of 2020, 2016-17’s freshmen, don’t have the same perspective as previous classes. They have not been exposed to the previous system, so their opinion could reveal more details about it.


Freshman Jon Wick, while glad he was accepted, believes that the old system is much better for the school, and had a tendency to accept students that are more committed to pursuing a career in aviation.


“You’re definitely going to get a lot less quality people I’m guessing,” said Wick. “You’re not really knowing who you’re letting into the school, it’s just random.”


The lottery system draws in more applicants with nearly 100 more students applying, decreasing the odds for any individual to be admitted.


“A lot of the kids at my school got into the lottery, so it was pretty much random,” said Wick. “I was under the impression that everyone who applied got accepted.”


With so many kids being admitted, Wick thought many students applied due to its reputation as such an outstanding school, and not for the sake of aviation.


“I think they should go back to the old system, because if someone really wanted to go here they’d get here,” said Wick. “It’s not more of a chance [to get in], it’s if you really want it.”


Wick’s view mirrors many students’ frustrations over the new system, but other freshmen have taken slightly different stances on the situation. Freshman Bernie Jones recognizes both sides of the argument.


“There are some kids who work really hard, and are interested in the field,” said Jones, “but because of the lottery process they were not able to get in.”


There are benefits and disadvantages to each application system, but many students are generally unsure which process is best for the school.


“While [the lottery] does have its helpfulness in making sure that multiple demographics get recognized,” said Jones. “It also gets rid of some of the kids who should be getting into the school, just because is comes down to luck.”


While the lottery does open up an opportunity for a student body that is extremely diverse, it can be possible to skirt around the STEM criteria to an extent.


“The lottery is useful, but not if you want to maintain a high standard, even though I think many students here are of high standards,” said Jones.”It could bring new things that before, without the lottery, wasn’t happening.”


Though Jones is in favor of the diversity that the new process brings, Wick doesn’t think the new process addresses the focus of the school.


“The old system was actually accepting people who have an interest in engineering or aviation,” said Wick. “With this new system, it’ll be random people who may want to go to a better school, and not just because it’s about aviation.”

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