Girl Power Song Power Rankings

by Jeff

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Let me start this article by addressing a few things. I am not a female. More specifically, I am not a girl. I am, admittedly, just a foolish 18 year old man. I am not a feminist (just kidding, ladies!); I’ve even been called a misogynist. What I am, however, is a lover of music; girl power songs included.

You might be asking yourself, what exactly does he mean by a “girl power song?” A GP song empowers women of all ages. It teaches us that we don’t need no stinkin’ man in our lives to be happy. They are perfect to listen to after a breakup, at a slumber party, or cruising around town. There have been countless amazing girl power songs that will never get old, but I attempted to narrow it down to the top ten.

Honorable Mentions
The following songs are girl power classics, but did not quite make the top ten.
“So What?” by P!nk
“Chain of Fools” by Aretha Franklin
“Run the World (Girls)” by Beyoncé
“I’m a Survivor” by Destiny’s Child
“We are Never Ever Getting back Together” by Taylor Swift
“Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)” by Kelly Clarkson
“I Love It” by Icona Pop

And now, without further ado, I present the top ten girl power songs of all time.

10.) “Man! I feel like a Woman” by Shania Twain
We start out our top 10 with a little bit of country flair, courtesy of Shania Twain. In this upbeat country song, Twain sings about going out with her girls, feeling alright, and having a fun time. While this song might not be universally appealing to non-country fans, we can all agree that its message is timeless and simple.

9.) “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” by Cyndi Lauper
The title basically speaks for itself. This 80s classic is simple in nature, yet serves as a lighthearted reminder to sometimes let go and just have fun.

8.) “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani
Many people have mixed feelings about Gwen Stefani’s break from No Doubt and question her solo career. However, nobody can deny the legitimacy of her 2004 song, “Hollaback Girl.” In this urban-pop song, Stefani tells the world that she isn’t, in fact, a hollaback girl. She also ensures that none of her listeners will ever misspell the word “bananas” again.

7.) “Irreplaceable” by Beyoncé
Number 7 on our list is unlike most of the upbeat, peppy songs on our list. It is actually relatively slow, but just as empowering to women. In this song, Beyoncé is in the process of kicking her boyfriend out of her house. All of his stuff can be conveniently found in a box to the left. This song is so good because it reminds us that nobody, no matter how special they may seem, is irreplaceable. Except Beyonce herself; she seems as close to perfection as possible.

6.) “Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood
Vandalism is rarely a good thing. Under normal circumstances, it is NOT a good idea to dig your key into the side of a car, carve your name into a leather seat, take a baseball bat to both headlights, and slash a hole in the car’s tires. However, if you are country star Carrie Underwood, and your boyfriend cheats on you, then by all means, go ahead and do so. Normal people would probably have charges pressed against them for such actions, but after listening to this song, I doubt any police officer would want to mess with my girl Carrie Underwood.

5.) “Fighter” by Christina Aguilera
In this girl power anthem, Christina Aguilera tells her listeners about how her breakup with a man has made her more powerful than before. She has now become stronger, harder, wiser, faster, smarter, and most importantly, a fighter. Aguilera uses her powerful pipes to empower women and make any girl out there going through a breakup feel better about herself. This song has an awesomely turbulent mood to it that leaves all jerk guys out there shaking in their boots.

4.) “Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson
Coming in at number 4 on our list is American Idol season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson’s 2004 hit “Since U Been Gone.” If you’re able to look past the text lingo in the title (Really, Kelly? You didn’t have time to type out “You?”) you’ll definitely realize how amazing this song. In this song, Clarkson belts out how happy she is now that her ex-boyfriend is out of her life. This song is uplifting, and perfect for screaming along to.

3.) “Single Ladies” by Beyoncé
According to Kanye West, this song produced one of the “best videos of all time.” While Kanye might have been a tad hyperbolic in his praise of the video, the song is certainly an all-time great. It calls for all the single ladies in the club to band together and show the world how dope they really are. It is literally impossible to listen to this song and not dance. Seriously, try it. If you were successful, then you likely have no soul.

2.) “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor
This classic disco song takes the silver medal of girl power songs. Gloria Gaynor admits that while at first she was afraid and petrified, it is possible for all girls to grow strong and learn how to get along without their men. So whenever your stupid boy comes crawling back from outer space, put on this song, tell him to walk out the door, cause he’s not welcome anymore.

1.) “Respect” by Aretha Franklin
The top spot on the Girl Power Song Power Rankings is this iconic anthem by the queen of girl power, Aretha Franklin. Aretha doesn’t ask for much, but she does demand respect from her men. This upbeat song is literally impossible to not sing along to, and it also provides a helpful spelling lesson while doing so. As an all time great vocalist, Franklin delivers a powerful vocal performance which echoes the powerful sentiment of her song. “Respect” garners the respect of all its listeners.

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Whats Down at “Downton Abbey”

by Lauren

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Recently, all the rage has been about the British TV series, Downton AbbeyDownton Abbey takes you back to the 1900’s where you follow the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family. The show first aired in the UK in 2010, but soon came to be the international hit it is today. 

Caution: spoilers ahead! 

This fictional series is filmed at Highclere Castle in Hampshire, England but is called Downton Abbey, where the Crowley family lives.  The first season opens up with the shocking news of the Titanic sinking in the Atlantic Ocean.  During this time,Lady Cora Grantham, mother of the house, had three daughters and no male son to inherit the estate and family fortune. A binding contract on the house states that a male heir must inherit the house. This creates a big dilemma for the Crowley family because their daughter, Lady Mary Crowley, lost her fiancée, the hier to the estate,  in the Titanic. Now, the fortune must go to the next male family member in line.   

This is when we meet Matthew Crawley, an unsophisticated man, who becomes the next heir. Matthew and his mother, Isobel Crawley, move to Downton Abbey and try to become respectable aristocrats.  During this process, Lady Mary tries to find a respectable husband to marry.  That task becomes very hard after a rumor was spread that she had slept with a man, unmarried, and he had been found dead the next day. Without knowing the rumor was true, Mary and Matthew fell in love and became engaged.  This engagement, however, was broken off right as World War I started, and Matthew went to war.

Season 2 aired in the U.S. on January, 2012, and in the U.K. a year before that. This begins a new journey of finding Mary a husband, and meeting Matthew’s new fiancée, Lavinia.  Mary and Matthew, who are still clearly in love with each other, attempt to become friends, and support each other’s romances. Mary becomes engaged to Sir  Richard, the owner of a popular newspaper in New York, who helps her conceal the rumor of having a relationship with a man while unwed.  Then, while in battle, Matthew is injured in the spine and told he will never walk or have children. This created unease in the Crawley family because they must find another heir. Later in the season, Matthew begins to feel his legs, and can eventually walk again.

Just as you think everything is calm, and wedding preparations are finalized for Matthew and Lavinia, the 1918 flu pandemic comes to Downton.  Many of the household staff and family members are stricken ill. In the end, Lavinia dies. Along with this stunning news, Lady Cora’s third daughter, Sybil, shocks the family with the news she is in love with the chuffer, Tom Branson, and they are getting married. Her father is angryat first, but gives his limited blessing to the couple in the end.  Mary then realizes she is unhappy with Sir Richard and breaks off their engagement, ready to face the old, nasty rumor, which continues to spread.  Mary, who prepared to go to America to escape the papers, is asked by Matthew to marry him once again. The season ends with her agreement to marry him.

Season 3  greets you to the marriage of Matthew and Mary. Now the family no longer needs to worry about an heir, and the estate and fortune stay in the family.  As usual, peace is long to stay, as Sybil and Tom write to the family from their home in Ireland that they are expecting their first child. This shakes the family as they want to reconnect their relationship with Sybil and the new baby. Lady Edith finally gets engaged to an older aristocrat, Sir Anthony, who later leaves her at the altar.   Soon after the wedding, due to complications, Sybil dies during child birth. Tom, names the child after her, and remains at Downton. Mary and William struggle with fertility, but after Mary undergoes a minor surgery, the couple becomes pregnant.  Lady Edith, wanting to be independent while still unmarried, starts writing for a newspaper.  Here she becomes close with the newspaper’s editor, who is married.

Season 3 is continuing to air in the U.S.  A fourth season has been confirmed, and one thing is for sure. It will be nothing short of the jaw-dropping drama that began 3 season ago.   If you have never watched the series, I highly suggest you catch up, and watch away. Downton Abbey has captured many hearts and is well worth the collective seven Primetime Emmy Awards.

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What’s in a Password

by Lauren

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With all of the technology that is around today, one of the most common problems people face is forgotten passwords.  It seems that the whole world has embraced passwords even if they seem a nuisance. In reality, passwords play a key role in technology.  Why are these locking restrictions needed? What do they do, and more importantly, how can we remember them?  

Today passwords are used to keep information safe. A computer is much like a vault; inside the computer are all your important documents, pictures, and other media information that you may not necessarily want open to all eyes. For the protection of this information, a password is set into place. This acts like the vault’s combination lock, but this one is digitalized.  So in reality, a computer with a password is a computerized vault.

Many people, such as business workers, teachers, and even those super secret spies you see in movies use them.  Passwords not only unlock things now, they also help keep your computer and its files safe from viruses and computer hackers. 

Hackers today are not always after your information.  They might want to get into your emails and send letters that are not from you. They also might want to take photos on your computer.   Also, you can be held responsible for all damage that is done on your computer while it is hacked.

Computer viruses can be also very damaging for the hard drive in your computer.  Once a virus is in your computer, the virus will spread like wildfire. Then after the virus has taken over your computer, the computer will become slow, unresponsive, and may need to be replaced if not fixed.

With all the risk involving no password protection, it is much simpler to just apply a password to your computer and other information-holding files such as an email.  Once you have applied that password, you can be rest assured that your information is perfectly safe.

Choosing a password can be a little tricky.  When creating a password, you want to make one that no one can guess.  If your password was as obvious as your name, then it wouldn’t do much protecting from anyone who knows you. Here are some guidelines on creating a great password:

How to Create a Great Password:

  • Use at least 8 characters (letters, symbols, and numbers)
  • Does not use your real name, user name, or company name, or any personal information
  • Use  a combination of numbers and upper and lowercase letters
  • Get creative
  • Create one that you will remember

When making your password, being creative is not using your name with a bunch of zeros. Combine the name of an old stuffed animal with your favorite age, or your favorite movie with the number of times you have seen it.

Here is an example of a good passwords:  

  • SpiderMan8
  • Harvard101
  • GaGa247

NEVER:

  • Use the same passwords for multiple important accounts (such as Gmail and Banking).
  • Tell anyone else your passwords.

Now you are all set to create your own password. Follow this simple guide and your information will be as safe as a vault.

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“That 70’s Show:” Where Are They Now?

by Josh

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During the summer of 1998, Fox first aired That 70’s Show, a sitcom which seemingly found the perfect blend between comedic displays of teenage angst and “psychedelic” 70’s pop culture.

The plot is set in the fictional town of Point Place, Wisconsin, spanning from May 17, 1976, to December 31, 1979. The show is based around the antics of one group of friends that consists of 4 guys: Eric Forman, Stephan Hyde, Michael Kelso and Fez, and two girls: Jackie Burkhart and Donna Pinciotti. This show was extremely successful and ran from 1998 to 2006, and served as a starting point for all six of the main actors’ careers.

But where are they all now? All of the characters have experienced different levels of success, and each  has gone on to act in other ventures. However, it seems as though only Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher have really solidified themselves as famous actors.
Eric Forman, the series’ main character, is played by Topher Grace, and he actually left the show before its ending so that he could be featured as Eddie Brock in Spiderman 3.   His leaving the show in season 7 directly impacted its ratings and was a large factor for the show’s conclusion after season 8.

Danny Masterson, who wonderfully portrays Stephan Hyde, a scruffy orphaned rebel who keeps you guessing with his subtle humor and witty quips, was on the show for all eight seasons. After the show ended, he kept acting in smaller parts in various movies and TV shows. Now he is immersed in the music scene as D.J. Mom Jeans in Los Angeles.

Laura Prepron, better known as Donna Pinciotti, has not achieved the same amount of success and she did on this show but she has kept busy with a brief stint in modeling and a lead role in the show October Road and a variety of other smaller parts in sitcoms, such as How I Met Your Mother.

Wilmer Valderrama, aka Fez, was arguably the most beloved member of the cast. While on the show, he was nominated for 4 AlMA Awards for most outstanding actor in a comedy series. His most notable work after the ending of the show is being the host of Yo Mamma on MTV from 2006 to 2008.

Mila Kunis has made quite the name for herself after the ending of the show; she is currently the voice for Meg Griffin from Family Guy and has been in a number of successful movies like Forgetting Sarah Marshall, The Book of Eli, Black Swan, and, most recently, she had a lead role on the movie Ted. Interestingly, Kunis was only 14 during the first season of That 70’s Show, even though actors had to be 18 to even audition.  She lied about her age to get the role and once she came clean about her true age, the producers liked her portrayal of Jackie Burkhart so much that they decided to keep her on the cast.

Last, but certainly not least, is Aston Kutcher. During his time on the show he played the amazingly dim-witted Michael Kelso. Kutcher left the show early to pursue other things. Kutcher is the most successful cast member from an acting standpoint and has been able to do many great things after having such success on this show. He created, produced and hosted the hit MTV show, Punk’d, and has been in several popular movies including: Dude Where’s My Car?, Cheaper by the Dozen, Just Married, The Butterfly Effect , Valentine’s Day and No Strings Attached. He is also planning to star in the movie Jobs as Steve Jobs himself. Kutcher has not only found success on the big screen, but he also plays main character Walden Schmidt in Two and a Half Men.

If anything on this show is memorable it is the extremely catchy theme song “In the Street” by Alex Chilton and Chris Bell of the band, Big Star. However, Big Star’s version of the song was not used in the theme;  instead, the show used a cover by Todd Griffin, and only then for the first season. For the next 7 seasons it was the band Cheap Trick that performed the rendition that any true fan has come to love. That 70’s Show captured the hearts of millions over its tenure and despite being cancelled almost a decade ago, it is still  aired from time to time on television. Now with the innovation of Netflix and Hulu anyone has access to the full 200 episodes in eight seasons. Every time the show comes on I can’t help but sing the last line of the theme song “Where all alright was all alright, Hello Wisconsin!

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“30 Rock” Says Goodbye

by Jeff

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On Thursday January 31, 2013, NBC aired 30 Rock’s 1 hour series finale. 30 Rock was created and produced in 2006 by Emmy and two-time Golden Globe winning comedian Tina Fey, who plays the role of Liz Lemon, the producer of an NBC sketch comedy show, TGS with Tracy Jordan. Network executive Jack Donaghy, played by two-time Emmy and three-time Golden Globe winner Alec Baldwin, becomes Lemon’s mentor, and helps her juggle her personal life and the ridiculous antics of Tracy Jordan (played by Tracy Morgan) and Jenna Maroney (Jane Krakowski), the two unpredictable stars of TGS. Also featured in the cast is Kenneth, played by Jack McBrayer, a lovable yet naive NBC page.

30 Rock has been praised by fans and critics alike. It won the Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Comedy series, and it has been nominated every year it has been eligible. Fey has been nominated for awards 12 times for her portrayal of Liz Lemon, and 9 additional times for her work as a writer on the show. Baldwin has also received 12 award nominations. As of February 2013, the show has received a whopping 145 different nominations, and has won 39 of those awards.

One notable aspect of 30 Rock has been its guest stars. The show has featured countless celebrity appearances, such as Betty White, Oprah Winfrey, Kelsey Grammer, James Franco, Kristen Schaal, Denise Richards, Matt Damon, Jennifer Aniston, Will Arnett, Steve Buscemi, Jason Sudekis, Mary J. Blige, Adam Levine, Salma Hayek, Jon Hamm, Emma Stone, Julianne Moore, Steve Martin, Jim Carrey, Jerry Seinfeld, Tim Meadows, Will Forte, Matthew Broderick, Tony Bennett, Ryan Lochte, and many more.

Saying 30 Rock has been a successful TV show would be an understatement. However, on January 31, the show’s seven-year run came to an end with an hour long finale special: “Hogcock/Last Lunch.” The finale was a hilarious and fitting end to the classic sitcom.

With TGS recently cancelled, Liz struggles to adjust to her new life as a stay-at-home mom. Meanwhile, the recently promoted Jack Donaghy struggles to find true happiness in his life. When a clause in Tracy Jordan’s contract is discovered that says the show will violate their agreement unless they can produce one more episode, the cast and crew reunite to say goodbye and produce one final show.

Overall, I could not have wished for a better finale. It was on par with the humor of the series, while providing near perfect resolutions to each and every character. The only negative aspect of the finale was that it was the finale, and it means no more 30 Rock. However, all good things must come to an end. Thursday nights will never be the same without 30 Rock.

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From Twilight to Dawn

by Lauren

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It is that time of year again: girls line up and wait until the early hours of the morning to go to the movies, dragging their boyfriends with them.  The newest Twilight movie, Breaking Dawn Part 2, was released on November 16th. The final film in the best-selling book series left millions of fans crying for more of their favorite characters.

Breaking Dawn Part 2 started with a recap from Part 1.  All the viewers were then startled by a new and improved vampire Bella. There is finally peace in her chaotic, adventurous life.  She can finally rest from all those crazy vampires trying to kill her. She is now a new and improved, “indestructible” Bella. The story then follows the life of her family with her husband (and vampire) Edward and her newly born half human-half vampire daughter, Renesmee.

However, this peace can’t last forever.  The Volturi, ancient vampires from Italy, go after the Cullen family after hearing a false rumor that Renesmee is an immortal child.  Fighting for their lives, the Cullens recruit other vampires from all over the world to help them. With all their new vampire friends, they intend to make the Volturi listen to the truth about Renesmee’s upbringing and avoid a fight. Along the way, Alice leaves the Cullen family along with her vampire husband, Jasper. Finally, when the time comes and the Volturi appear, Alice returns.  All together the characters make the scene exciting and bring the viewers at the edge of their seats.

When gripping your seat, don’t be surprised to see Jacob’s funny one-liners and shirtless scenes. Some scenes had the audience crying while others laughed.  There is, however, an unexpected plot twist that had the whole audience gasping.  Bill Condon, the director of both Breaking Dawn movies, wanted to put his own touch on the series. Throughout the series, each movie had a different director and style, which added to the excitement of the movie-going experience.  Condon expressed the desire to have the fans step into the world of Twilight one last time and be left breathless.

Actors Taylor Lautner and Robert Pattinson, along with actress Kristen Stewart, star in this film.  Lautner, the resident werewolf Jacob, played his part perfectly as he creates a deep connection with “Nessie,” Bella and Edward’s daughter. Stewart and Pattinson, as usual, maintain the great chemistry that started it all in Twilight.  All together, the cast made the end of this fantastical series believable.

Like any other girl, I love a happy ending, and that is exactly what Bill Condon gave me. His entire vision of the heartfelt love story turned out perfectly and a great setting for Bella’s first time as a vampire. This movie could have not been better. Even the reluctant friends or casual movie-goers were just as pleased as love-struck, overzealous “twi-hards.”  The difficult, long book that held so much importance and information was well-written and filmed. Bravo to the cast and crew of Breaking Dawn Part 2.

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Technology Advancing in Schools

by Myles

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Technology may be advancing so we may do the things that we normally do in a whole new way and even differently.In this day and age, iPads may soon replace books. However, it can do a lot more, too.  It is basically a hand-held computer that’s even smaller than a laptop can be used for entertainment, businesses, family occasions, and even for school work purposes. This iPad is attractive for education because of its ability to go online, take notes, and even homework that’s required online is the reason why people prefer iPads over other computers/laptops.

Though this technological device may have several qualities that are used for several purposes; the once used devices from the past signify how our technology in schools is advancing more than we realize.

In 1972, the first scanning device known as the Scantron was invented and was able to grade multiple schools exams at the same time so teachers can easily and effectively grade their student’s test. This way the teacher can give back the test to the students quicker than it has been without the device. Today we still have that invention, but like all machines, they’re upgraded beyond its former capabilities and is even more than it once was.

In 1980, the first ever computer to be put in school.  Known as the Plato computer, it may not have been able to go on the internet like today, but the Plato Computer was able to allow someone to type an essay to be handed to their teacher. Until then, students used typewriters.  This way, students can use less paper by not making several drafts if made several mistakes.

In 1999, was first interactive white board that allows a teacher to teach a class with a large enough screen for everyone to both see and copy notes.  In 2005 was the iClicker, invented so teachers would be able to switch from one screen to the other on the white board without touching it.

From what once the most advanced piece of technology of its time, comparing it with today’s technology such as the iPad, our world’s technology is progressing rapidly. Even beyond the iPad is the iPad mini and iPad 2-3 which are updated versions of the iPad, schools would be even better with them.

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