The OPEN PAGE is a blog written by teens in Mariposa County, located in the Western Sierra Mountains of Central California. Please include your full name and age with your submission.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Phil's Movie Previews

By Philip Vigil

Captain Malcom Reynolds is a retired galactic army captain, who decides to start his own business of small crimes and transports. He has a small crew for his ship, "Serenity". He gets more than he bargained for when he takes on two new passengers, a young doctor and his telepathic sister.
Playing September 30th.

Kyle, played by Jodie Foster, is an aircraft engineer who designed a double-decker airbus, which she and her daughter are riding on when her daughter mysteriously disappears.
Suspense builds when everyone on the aircraft denies ever seeing the daughter aboard.
Now in theaters.

"The Corpse Bride"
If you like Tim Burton films you will probably love this one. The pixilated hero, Victor, is taken to the underworld and wed to a corpse bride. His real bride-to-be waits for his return to the real world. Even though this is film is on the dark side, the story is
original and well-done.
Now in theaters.

"James Bond - From Russia with Love"
For those who are fans of the movies or fans of the games, this will be a treat. It stars Sean Connery instead of Pierce Brosnan. Many people are very happy about this. I'm not sure why everyone hates Pierce so much. Oh, well, according to IGN previews, the game will be played in 3rd-person mode, like "007 Everything or Nothing."
Coming to stores in October.

"The Matrix - Path of Neo"
A great game if you're a fan of "The Matrix" trilogy. You play Neo and control his every
move, just like you're in the movies. This looks like a more promising game than "Enter the
Matrix" or "The Matrix Online." This game is much longer, more interesting, and goes
way beyond the movies.
Coming to stores in November.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Out and About

By Phil Vigil

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Twisted Twisters

By Jesse Exum

Try saying these tongue twisters over and over as fast as you can until you mess up!

"Jones moans Joan's lone cones"

"Rivalry swamp measure"

"See Dee's DVD ASAP"

"Tidbits tidbits tidbits squid"

Jesse's Jokes

By Jesse Exum

What do you call a boat with a lot of room?
~A space ship.

What do you call a check used to pay off a house?
~A realty check.

What's 486 x 12,957?
~A math problem.

What do you do when Nate needs a change?

What do you call an intimidated bird?
~A yellow-bellied flinch.

What's promotion?
~The way professionals move.

What do you call a spineless, rude kid?
~An invertebrat.

What's the most athletic element?

What does an artist do when he wants an audience?
~He draws a crowd.

What do you call a rollerblade on sale?
~A cheapskate.

What did the car say to the train?
~"I'm tired."

Who would want a knuckle sandwich?
~A cannibal.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

The Mariposa Skate Park, Broken Down

By Paul Wilson

These days just the mention of the Mariposa skate park can start a long discussion, it seems. Everyone has their opinion, and no two seem to be alike. Some say it should be shut down. Some say it should be left alone, the way it is, and the way it is run. Some say better supervision would help; while others say hiring an employee to watch it would change its standing under the California state law. Some say the parents should be more involved, telling their children to wear the required protective gear, and to obey the rules. The county is worried that with the percentage of people at the skate park who are not wearing protective gear, they may be heading towards liability lawsuits. There may be only a small percentage of people wearing gear but, of all the people who are at the skate park at any given time, only some of them are actually riding or skating in the park. The rest are just “hanging out,” talking, listening to their MP3 players, and watching.

In September of 1997, California Assembly Bill 1296 was passed to amend Section 115800 of the Health and Safety Code, to cover liability issues regarding skate parks. This law provided that neither public entities nor public employees were liable to any person who participates in a hazardous recreational activity. Skateboarding was included in the list of hazardous activities. AB 1296 expired in 2003, and a new law Senate Bill 994 was voted in, stated the same things, and extended the liability coverage to 2008. The conditions for this liability coverage have been completed by the Mariposa County Parks and Recreation, by posting signs stating the skate park is an unsupervised public facility, that by using the skate park you recognize that you are using it at your own risk, and by stating that helmets, elbow pads, and knee pads are required. Nobody who uses the skate park would have any feasible claims to base a lawsuit on if they chose to use the skate park and got hurt in it.

The authorities cite it as a hotspot of potential illegal activity, but any place that people gather could be the same. The skate park may not contribute to the educations of young adults like the High School does, or provide knowledge like the county library but all these are places where youth and adults may gather. The skate park is a public facility, for the enjoyment of the public, no different then any other public facility, like the Arts Park, or even the rest of the County Park. The worries about young people potentially being exposed to things they might not normally come in contact with could possibly be solved with more parents getting involved.
Many parents simply drop their kids off at the skate park, go do errands, visit friends, or go to work. They may not be aware of all their kids do while they are gone. A few minutes spent watching their son, or daughter enjoy the park may be all it would take. Children if they know they are, or could be watched by their parents, will normally act more maturely and wisely then if left to themselves.

In recent weeks, I have noticed that the people who actually skate and ride in the skate park have been keeping it cleaner, throwing away trash even if the trash isn’t theirs, and recycling the empty bottles, and soda cans that are brought to the skate park. If left to itself, I think the skate park will continue to run fairly smoothly, and the little bugs will eventually be worked out, leaving a facility that is easily enjoyable.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

A Fair Day in Mariposa

Mariposa County Fair--Labor Day Weekend
Photos by Jesse Exum

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Nita's Thoughts on Leaving Mariposa for College

By Nita Vigil

Hi, I am Nita, and since I am beginning college this fall I was asked to share some thoughts regarding leaving Mariposa. For all the other seniors who are also attending college out-of-county, this information will probably make you roll your eyes at the minute details.

But I digress. Anyway, in preparing for college, I have been working on chameleon techniques. A way to blend in is absolutely necessary for survival in a new environment. I have nearly perfected a phony accent, invisible glasses, spray-on tattoos, a false tan, false super-powers, spray-off tattoos, reversible jeans, reversible sweaters, reversible nostrils, scented candles, scented make-up, scented watch batteries, invisible pets, invisible friends, invisible clothes, well, I’m sure you get the picture.

Looking for Alternatives to Cafeteria Food

I have also been researching the resourcefulness of finding natural food. This goes far beyond scouring the campus for wild mushrooms, as this is an old and clichéd idea. It is not only unoriginal; it can be dangerous if one neglects to check for death caps. True scavengers know to check the brightly-colored flowers for insects; which, when caught, can make for a fiber filled, delicious treat. Some insects can serve as a between-classes snack once the legs are removed. When there is more time, honey bees can be laid out on a cookie sheet and baked in the style of roasted almonds.

Get the Butterfly Net!!!!!!

There is also the issue of decorating the dorm. Studies show that decorating is not only relaxing and therapeutic; the results of proper decorating are so rewarding that even art-phobics can enjoy it. In addition to this, there is probably no faster way to find out how strange one’s roommates truly are. Since there are various themes I have found, I will only take time to describe a few. There are the cultural themes: African Tribal Theme, Victorian Era, Early Egyptian, Ancient Roman, Gothic, Elizabethan, Grecian, and then there is the always-favored World War II Era.

There are also the natural themes that bring the outdoors indoors, but since pet occupation in dorms is strictly limited, stuffed rainforest creatures and trans-planted palm trees can give your room a more tropical feel. A more inexpensive way of decorating could involve purchasing a butterfly net and stopping by the flower beds between classes to catch any stragglers. Moths are easier to catch, but they provide a softer look when their wings are displayed against a white wall and butterflies can set off more of a stunning, wild look. If anyone asks about your chasing the wildlife armed with a net and jar, an easy explanation is that the butterfly population is getting out of hand and you are only doing your part to save the environment. Most people will not think this through fast enough to make a rebuttal. If you should meet up with one of these fast-thinkers, begin to rattle off ridiculous statistics about the number of people who have died from “butterfly gas.” You do not have to know what butterfly gas is, it could vary to serve your purpose. If you are standing near a particularly beautiful flower, you could say something like, “See this flower? Well, this little sucker here, [roughly shake jar with butterfly in it] he was headed for it. See this? [Point to nothing in particular on the butterfly], this is where the gas was going to come out and he was close, I barely got him in time!” While you may not convert anyone to your cause, there are few people who can come up with any kind of argument to THAT explanation. However you decide to work it, butterfly gas is both versatile and plausible-sounding.
(Thank you for visiting the Blog and please note that the material presented in this essay is purely the result of a soon-to-be-college-student’s overactive imagination. )

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