Nashville-style hot chicken brings the flavor to LA

By David Hovsepian

The hidden gem of Nashville was brought to LA by Johnny Ray Zone the CEO of Howlin’ Ray’s. Howlin’ Ray’s was founded in 2015 by Zone’s and his wife’s love for Nashville style Hot Chicken. For two years Zone has been doing a chicken tour around the country and settled down and opened a restaurant in Chinatown. Howlin’ Ray’s has by far the most flavorful chicken; it’s extremely crispy on the outside and nice and juicy on the inside.

In 2017 a group of friends opened a booth called Dave’s Hot Chicken in Hollywood. Dave’s is the runner up after Howlin’ Ray’s due to their moist chicken and flavorful spices. However, their fries are bland and very soft with no crunch.

In 2017 another Hot Chicken Spot opened, called Raging Hot Chicken which has been opening up shop and closing all around the valley. Their chicken isn’t the best and it’s never busy.

Lastly in 2018 Banging Buns had people craving over Instagram; however, since they have opened, it’s been very popular amongst young kids in the valley. Their chicken has improved since their launch. However, their chicken alone by itself is very bland, but their coating is very flavorful. 

Numero Uno has Grant students obsessed

By Briana Montalvo

Numero Uno, a little Italian restaurant right in Coldwater Canyon and North Hollywood CA serves authentic Italian food. Despite the fact that it is a small restaurant that is completely hidden, people still go crazy for its food, particularly Grant students.

I have decided to go on a quest in which I ask myself these following questions: What makes Numero Uno's Pizza different from other pizza places ? And what makes Numero
Uno a hot spot for Grant students?


In order to answer these questions, I decided to take a trip to Numero Uno. I was more than happy to go try out a restaurant that just about everyone in Grant high school is talking about.

As I entered the restaurant I was immediately greeted by Manuel Alizardo. “I like to see the customers happy, one of my favorite parts of my job really is serving the people besides cooking”, states Alizardo, an employee who has been working at Numero Uno for 37 years.

I was curious in trying the most popular thing on their menu, there famous pepperoni pizza. I sat down, ordered what I came here for and in just about 10 minutes was greeted by a big pan of pizza. It was clear to say that there pizza didn't look like any other pizza, it looked like pizza made from scratch.

As I took my first bite , I savored the bubbly cheese, that salty pepperoni, the herby tomato sauce and to top it off, the sweetness of that delicious doe. Right before my eyes that slice of pizza was gone.

It was at that moment, I understood why so many Grant students come to Numero Uno. I stumbled upon some fellow Grant students Aranza Villegas, Stephanie Alveranga, and Sandy Radilla. I was curious in knowing why they go to Numero Uno.

“The location is good, it's not too far or too close you can just head on over there right after school. On top of that you can tell that they really appreciate their customers because there always putting pictures of them on there televisions that they have inside there restaurant” states Sandy Radilla.

“Mainly cause of the food, not just because of the food but because they have good service there” says Aranza Villegas.

“Mostly because of the food, there food is unique,” says Stephanie Alvarenga.

I soon realized that the food is what is making these grant students obsessed with Numero Uno. I later returned to Numero Uno to speak with one of their workers, Manuel Alizarado. I was curious in knowing what makes their pizza different from other pizza restaurants such as Little Caesars.

“The taste and flavor of our pizza is unique. Our ingredients are fresh and everything is made by skratch everyday” says Alizardo.

I was also curious in knowing how this famous pizza place came to be. Alizardo says “It started off as a company before it became its own restaurant about 40 years ago. The owner of the company was named Ran Gelet.”

The origins of pizza takes back to ancient times where it was invented in Naples Italy. The use of tomato as used to cover their bread. Soon after, the poor began to put yeast and tomato into their bread. That's when the invention of pizza was born.

It is clear to say that pizza has been a delicacy for years.“ Pizza is my favorite thing on the menu because it reminds me of first time I ever had pizza” said Sandy Radilla. As child , I clearly remember pizza not only being an American Classic, but a comfort food.

I was curious to know how many Grant students attended Numero Uno. “We get about 2 or 3 Grant students a day” says Alizardo. I realized that this well known restaurant brings
the “American culture" to its customers.

People who dine at Numero Uno receive the experience of eating a classic American dish. People of different ethnicities come to Numero Uno. Eating Numero Uno’s food truly gives its customers a taste of authentic Italian food. When customers take a bite of Numero Uno’s pizza, they can truly feel American.

My search for the best self-serve frozen yogurt shop in the Valley

By Ani Gharibyan

With summer being right around the corner, we can expect frozen yogurt shops to be  filled with many customers waiting in line, eager to get a bowl of delicious frozen yogurt. I’m sure that we can all agree that frozen-yogurt is America’s favorite icy dessert. In the past decade, frozen yogurt shops have cropped up around Los Angeles, but the best one in The Valley is Yogurtland because of it flavors, employees, and sanitary environment.

Before we find out why Yogurtland is the go-to frozen yogurt shop, let’s review with a brief history of how frozen yogurt came to be so known and desirable.

The idea of frozen yogurt dates back to thousands of years when Emperor Nero was treated with exotic fruit juices that were mixed with mountain snow and in the 13t h century, Marco Polo introduced Asian water ices to Italy. In the 1970’s there was a lawsuit against ice-cream making technology because they weren’t producing frozen yogurt which is a much healthier alternative.

At first, people did not enjoy this change in their icy treats because it tasted too much like yogurt and not ice cream, but in the 1980’s frozen yogurt gained popularity because people were being informed about the healthy ingredients in frozen yogurt and that it was less fattening than ice cream.

The Valley has a few self-serve fro-yo shops such as Yogurtland, Menchie’s, Blizz, to name a few. Out of all those, Yogurtland is the best and here’s why.

Yogurtland has 16 flavors from the basics like chocolate and vanilla to fruit flavors such as chili mango sorbet and strawberry lemonade sorbet. Menchie’s only had one fruit flavor which was Pineapple Sorbet.

Each bowl of frozen yogurt is only $0.47 per ounce! Menchie’s has fewer flavors and their price for a bowl was $0.57 per ounce.

“It’s way too expensive”, says Lisa S on her Yelp review on Menchie’s.

Frozen yogurt isn’t just for young teens, which no sugar added options, dairy and gluten free flavors, and vegan options, anyone can enjoy a bowl of frozen yogurt.

From another review on Yelp, “You can’t go wrong with Yogurtland!”, Dorothy T. says.

During my trip to Yogurtland, I personally wasn’t a big fan of the tart flavors but if you like sour frozen snacks, those are the options for you but the fun doesn’t end there!

To top off your frozen yogurt, you have 38 toppings to choose from- strawberry rolled wafers, mochi, frosted animal cookies, and more!

For my bowl, I chose salty caramel, strawberry, cookies and cream, and French vanilla and topped it with some fresh cut strawberries, watermelon, mini m&ms, Hershey’s chocolate chips, and oreo crumbles. It tastes equally as delicious as it sounds.

The staff was very nice and greeted everyone who walked in by saying “Welcome!”. “The staff deserves 5/5 for their friendliness”, said Melissa W. from Yelp.

I quickly noticed that the place was very clean and the employees would clean and broom every few minutes. The floors at Menchie’s were a bit dirty and they had a hand sanitizer dispenser which was empty.

After finishing my bowl at Yogurtland, I realized that my hands were sticky but fortunately, they had a water dispenser as well as hand sanitizer to clean your hands and stay hydrated.

Yogurtland supplies you with as many sample cups as you need. At Blizz, the worker has to pour the sample for you and you only get two.

“With so many yogurt shops not allowing self-serve sample cups or samples period these days you start to wonder where the fun went in yogurt shops?, praises Josh, a happy and impressed customer. “Well all is well still at Yogurtland, samples-a-plenty, no waiting or asking to be served a sample”.

So, the next time you have a craving for frozen yogurt on a hot summer’s day, do yourself a favor and go to Yogurtland. At 4954 Van Nuys Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

America’s next top barbecue: Korean versus Southern barbecue

By John Demir

Our country is integrating as well as migrating different cultures of food to and from the United States. The world is advancing technologically and agriculturally to adapt to the needs and demands of its consumers. Although some foods are more popular than others they have all begun somewhere and or moved on to reach the current destinations they are to this day.

We find our way to the well known style of this type of food, not only with the different aspects of preparation, but also the intricate way of serving and cooking the food, titled Korean barbecue. This style of cooking first came to be as the eastern barbarians of Maek migrated to the northeast area of Asia where the Koreans are situated to this day, as they bring special types of meat and marinades to survive the movement in which they embarked on, and as they were to do so, traded with the Koreans which incorporated their style of cooking to create what we today know as Korean barbecue.

As we move onto our second style of barbecue, a more proximate style that’s been in the American culture for generations, Black Cultural or Southern barbecue. Surprisingly as I looked into the origins of this style, I was met with a lot of stories on slavery. Tales of African slaves who amazed their slavers so much with their own creative style of barbecue cooking that it was sown into the American culture itself. Regardless, tt does not differ the fact that it is one of the most delicious and creative ways of making such a perfect piece of meat.

Today, we could almost every time find a variety of Korean barbecue restaurants and establishments in such a short distance. I personally found one on Ventura, called “Gulby Korean Barbeque”, and a few minutes going in one direction, I found yet another one. These are reason that Korean barbecue is on such a popular scale. It’s a unique style of food and it’s accessible from almost everywhere. When I first gave this a try I was amazed at the layout of our table. The cooker in the middle, the multiple sides. It was wonderful, and with just a simple order of an all you can eat menu, we started off with numerous amount of different specialty meats. The chicken, the shrimp, the beef, the pork all marinated in a “top secret special sauce” as I was told by my waiter. I didn’t bother asking the chef for an interview as the it was very busy at the time and I didn’t wanna be rude. Finishing off my meal and making my way out. I was stuffed.

The Southern Culture of barbecue really specialized in not only the kind of sauces that was added to top off the meat after it was cooked, but also the spices which are perfectly rubbed into the meat beforehand as well. As this style takes it’s time in order for its meat to cook to absolute perfection. Unlike Korean barbecue, with this style of food you do not cook it yourself as it takes far too long to do so, but rather cooked for you and served in large portions, which almost always will fill you up. And of course the type of meat they make just melts in your mouth, as the multiple flavors of the spices incorporated in the meat, the tender feeling of the meat, and the tangy, almost sour taste of the sauce all bursting into your taste buds, exploding with perfect harmony in your mouth. It is quite obvious how this fits in such a high popularity scale, as it is one of the best tasting pieces of meat you can find anywhere.

As we come to an end to the adventurous exploration to the most popular types of meat we have in American, through the spiral of different sauces, spices, and traditions, despite the patience needed I prefer Southern Cultural barbecue as it incorporates so much more than just marination, and all the flavors together just make a perfect combination of satisfaction which could be explained with no words. You would just have to try it yourself to understand.

Searching for the perfect taco in LA

By Fernando Aguirre

As someone who eats food just like the rest of the world, I wanted to review one of my personal favorite foods. The food that I decided to eat at three different locations was the taco. I set out on a journey to find the best tasting taco place around my local area which is the San Fernando Valley.

I first went to the most obvious place in my area...and probably the most popular throughout the United States, which was Taco Bell. I go to the same Taco Bell but there is nothing really eye catching about the place. Taco Bell is just a place which simply “Americanized” the taco in a sense.

I had been Taco Bell plenty of times, but I wanted to try some type of taco that I had never tried before. It was the grilled steak soft taco that was priced at $2.59 which was a bit much I would say. The taco was made up of steak, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and avocado ranch sauce.

Once I tried it, the taco was decent at best because there was once thing that was throwing the whole taco off, which was the avocado ranch sauce. There was nothing really special about this taco, it just satisfied my hunger at the least.

Just from this first taco place, I had a strong feeling that the two next places I would try tacos from would be better than Taco Bell. The next place that I went to was a place called La Estrella and this place was completely different compared to Taco Bell.

Of course this placed was a taco truck and not an actual restaurant, but that is what it made it more authentic just from looking at it. It was interesting to see people hanging out around the taco truck. My friend recommended La Estrella to me, so he told me about some of the tacos there and which one I would probably like the most.

I ended up ordering a taco with carne asada, lettuce, and a little bit of red chili. The taco was delicious as I take the first bite and the tortilla complemented the beef very well. The best part of this particular experience is that taco was only $1.50 compared to the one from Taco Bell.

The third and final place I searched for to find the perfect taco was King Taco. La Estrella had impressed me and I did not know what to expect of this place. As I enter King Taco, I realize that is a pretty big restaurant.

There were a variety of Latino dishes as I look up at the menu, but I was here for one thing and one thing only and that was to find the perfect taco. Again, I went with a type of carne asada taco to try and differentiate this taco from the one at La Estrella.


Sadly, this taco did not live up to what I expected. The beef was sub-par but the taco still tasted pretty good. The price of the tacos was also high up there compared to La Estrella. After that I was finally ready to decide the taco that ruled all other tacos.


To keep in mind, none of the tacos that I tried from the three different places were particularly bad. They all had positives and for the most part I enjoyed all of the tacos.

Nevertheless, I ended up choosing La Estrella the place to eat if you want to have some exceptional tacos in my opinion. The tacos at La Estrella were really the most appetizing and were the cheapest tacos which is bonus points for me.

It was great experience trying all these tacos, but at last the perfect taco place has been found. It is like a taste of victory when you find that certain place or restaurant that will offer the absolute best food they have got. In this case it was all about the tacos and I thoroughly believe La Estrella is the place to eat.

My journey to find the best hangout spot in the San Fernando Valley

By Christine Lizama

My name is Christine Lizama and during two weeks I decided to try and find the best hangout spot and hopefully help you find out what your next hangout spot will be. I chose four different locations; Starbucks, TeaPoP, Boba Cha Cha, and Buffalo Wild Wings. In order to prove if these four locations are a good place to hangout with friends, I myself took a few of my friends and wanted to see what they thought.


When we first went to Starbucks, there weren’t many open chairs to sit on and there were multiple people who were there to do their homework, so we could not have a normal conversation and laugh as much as we would have wanted to because we would disturb the people around us. It’s a good place to be, because as my friend Emily stated, “they have many drinks you can choose from and you can always change a drink if you want it to be a certain way”. After Starbucks we then went to TeaPoP which is similar to Starbucks in some ways.


At TeaPoP they only had a few drinks to choose from which consisted of mainly teas/milk teas. They also offer if you would like to add boba to your drink and just like starbucks you can choose to customize your drink to the way you like it. If you were looking for something to snack on they didn’t have much food besides croissants and noodles.


What all of my friends agreed about what they liked about this place is that there were many seats and big tables to just sit and talk. Personally what I liked most about this place was how they have many games to choose from and books to read. Although it is similar to Starbucks, it is more suitable because they try and make it group friendly as possible. TeaPoP has both an inside and outside which is great for those who like being outdoors or indoors.


If you are looking for a spot to just relax, drink tea, just have a conversation with your friends and maybe even play some games, then this is your place. Not only does TeaPoP have a variety of games to choose from, but so does Boba Cha Cha.


When we went to Boba Cha Cha there were a few games, not as much as the ones at TeaPoP, but they did have games for example BattleShip and Jenga. When we were there we noticed there weren’t many tables, they only had three tables that sit a group of four and too big tables that sit a group of six. Although they do have really good drinks such as smoothies, milk teas and slushies, not to mention the size of their drinks are really big for a real low price.


This place is worth coming back to because, “it has a very welcoming vibe,” stated my friend Stephanie, “the moment you enter you feel relaxed and comfortable”. Although it does get packed during the afternoon it is a good place to hang out and get a refreshing drink and play some games.

Even though Starbucks, TeaPoP and Boba Cha Cha were a good place, the last place we went to was Buffalo Wild Wings. We all liked it because the food was delicious and it was a fun environment. When at Buffalo Wild Wings sometimes there is a long line to get a table, but the food does get to you quick.


Overall, a friend said “The food is really good, they have many varieties of food for example salads, Mac’n’ cheese and the wings are the best. They have really good desserts too.”


Although my friends and I️ all decided the best hangout spot was Buffalo Wild Wings I️ tried to make a small survey to see what other people would think, so I️ went around school and asked 20 people, out of those 20 people 12 people chose Buffalo Wild Wings, 4 people chose Starbucks, 2 chose TeaPoP, and 2 people chose Boba Cha Cha.


This goes to show that Buffalo Wild Wings might be a good place to consider next time you want to hangout with friends.

Not your average museum: an inside look at death

By Jennifer Delgadillo

There is no place like this in which death is prominent. The topic of death is taboo but here it's everywhere. This museum will be a new source of interest. On May 12th 2018, my mother and I went to a local museum called The Museum Of Death. The name of this museum interested me so much that I just had to go and see what it had in store.


On the day I was going to see it I felt a big wave of nervousness since I did not know what was in store for me. It’s like when you are in line for the newest horror attraction. When my mother and I got to the museum my nervousness was skyrocketing but as I continued walking into the museum my nervousness faded away as I began looking and everything the museum has to offer including a two headed turtle.


During my stay there I learned a lot about death related things, from serial killer facts, things about a cult called Heaven's Gate, and how for a crime scene that involves death how there are are different colors of body bags.


This museum by far is one of the most interesting museum I had ever been to. The atmosphere in the museum was eerie as the lighting was dim. Also the museum is structured in a way that eases you into the different aspects of death. With this structure it helps people who are not really into dark things to actually enjoy it.

Talking about enjoyment this museum has an overall 4.3 score on Yelp which in my opinion is really good. Most importantly overall people really enjoyed it. Many people on Yelp have said mostly the same as what I experienced but also people stating that they would go back to the museum several times. Most people I agree with, saying things about how creepy it is, how informative it is and overall how well it is organized.


Many people critique the fact that the museum allows any age group to enter the museum so many say that the younger audiences are not the greatest people to take to the museum. Also most of these people don't really see the purpose of it as they see it the Museum of Death is just another mediocre halloween store that serve no purpose. In the eyes of the owners however this is very untrue.

There is some history to this museum however. The World Famous Museum of Death was founded in June, 1995, in San Diego. It began as an art gallery full of controversial material. The founders JD Healy and Cathee Shultz had realized that death is a taboo topic in which should be explored. They closed down their art gallery and moved to Hollywood, they opened the Museum of Death.


There they house the world's largest collection of serial murderer artwork. They have things from photos of the Charles Manson crime scenes, the guillotined severed head of Henri Landru otherwise known as the Bluebeard of Paris, original crime scene and morgue photos from the grisly Black Dahlia murder, a body bag and coffin collection, replicas of full size execution devices, mortician and autopsy instruments, pet death taxidermy, and other things that will peak interest about death. Also on display are videos of autopsies and serial killers, the Heaven's Gate Cult recruiting video, and the infamous Traces of Death video, all of these videos are real as told by the owners of the museum.


The Museum of Death is a self guided tour, lasting approximately 45 minutes to an hour, but guests are allowed to stay longer is they can take it.


They’re located at 6031 Hollywood Blvd. in Hollywood and 227 Dauphine St. in New Orleans, opening at 10am and closing at 8pm on weekdays and 9pm on Saturday and 10pm on Sunday. With admission of $17 in the Hollywood location, there is many things that anyone can be intrigued in.

Hip-hop artists bombarding social media with new flex trend

By Devyd Oganezov

Recently, social media has been bombarded with hip-hop artists “flexing” by showing off money, jewelry, houses, and cars. Although a small portion of fans remain untroubled by this trend, many have been outraged.

Hip-hop artist Daniel Hernandez known as “Telashi69” gained his fame in the mid 2017 after his Twitter and Instagram went viral after seeing his unusual appearance of rainbow dyed hair, rainbow teeth grill covers and tattoos of number sixty-nine printed on the side of his forehead.

As Hernandez’s audience increase on social media, he appeared all over the top trending sections of Snapchat. Snapchat is an app used for sending pictures and texts while browsing through celebrities’ recent posts or news.

During the past month, Hernandez has been posting videos and pictures of him buying jewelry worth hundreds of thousands of dollars while he threw hundred-dollar bills at the jewelry retailer.


Throwing money at people while being recorded is a universal trend of showing off that one is rich. Hip-hop artists often do this to disrespect other hip-hop artists assuming that having stacks of hundred-dollar bills gives them the right call someone poor.


I conducted a quantitative survey which asked twenty-seven teenagers about the new hip-hop artists flex trend circulating on social media. More than half of respondents stated that they hated hip-hop artists for flexing. About a third of respondents stated that the trend lowered their self-esteem. Finally, a very small portion of people stated that they were inspired by their pathetic behavior.


Further, many people have been negatively affected by the trend, therefore, I decided it is necessary to interview a few teenagers to uncover some of detail why they might hate or the trend.


Ashot Aleksanyan and Sam Ekimyan are interviewees who listen to hip-hop music daily and enjoy roaming around news and daily lives of hip-hop artists on social media. Both were asked about how the trend affected them.


“Hip-hop artists have no intent to piss people off,” argues Aleksanyan and Ekimyan. “I think they just do not notice how tremendously the trend angers their fans which drives people crazy, leading them to commit all types of crimes to claim their expensive commodities.”

As to Daniel Hernandez, Aleksanyan and Ekimyan reply, “He is a rainbow headed clown that does not care about the public but himself, he often says ‘I am all for my fans’ but never actually supports those in need instead making them hate him more.”

Aleksanyan also added how Hernandez will ultimately end up being killed by one of his outraged fans like the previous hip-hop artists which were killed in the mid 1990’s for their erratic behaviors.

After viewing two negative opinions about the trend, it was necessary to find someone who was untroubled. Melanie Perez and Adam Wiseman were interviewed.

Perez and Wiseman listen to hip-hop music quite often, although they do not roam around social media for news or celebrities’ posts. They were asked if the trend affected them positively or negatively.

“Hip-hop artists always bring positivity to their fans,” said Perez and Wiseman. “Their intent is to inspire people and to show that everything is possible as long as they pursue their dreams.”

As a result, Perez and Wiseman were not affected by the trend, they both argue that “flexing money is what makes them look unique from other hip-hop artists.”

Speaking of Daniel Hernandez, Wiseman and Perez argue. “He does what he does best. He is getting a huge fan base, therefore there is nothing that needs to be done to prevent him from expressing himself because people love him for it.”

After many different points of views about the trend, effects of it remain neutral. Further, there is handful amount of people that enjoy this trend, therefore it is unable to be removed. Thus, one solution is present to those whom are affected negatively.

The solution is quite simple, if you do not want to be affected by the trend, avoid roaming through social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, etc. Block hip-hop artists and articles which often promote the trend because if it really does affect you, why are you roaming through social media looking for something that pisses you off?

Doctors think social media is ruining teenagers’ mental health, but teens think otherwise

By Meri Grigoryan

Millions of teenagers use social media on a daily basis. They spend nearly 12 hours a day texting their friends, liking and commenting on other people’s photos, and expressing their personalities on Instagram and Snapchat. It keeps teenagers entertained, occupied, and up to date on what is going on in their friends’ life and around the world.


But, it is not entirely pretty when things do not turn out the way they want to portray themselves on social media, leading to depression, anxiety, and even suicide.

Most doctors and pediatricians have found that most children even beginning at the age of 3 using their parents’ phones for hours already starts to take an effect to addiction. Many parents do not allow it, but as soon as children reach their teenage years, they begin using it during school, when doing homework, even at 12 AM at night, which ruins their good night’s sleep to function better the next day. When teenagers go for a check-up, and the doctor or pediatrician seems to find that the teenager is suffering with depression or anxiety, they often turn to question whether social media seems to be the problem.

For years, doctors have been learning about dopamine, a function in the brain that shocks throughout the blood system when something or someone improves their mood. To most teenagers, the dopamine in their brain gets released in relation to social media when they get certain number of likes or nice comments under their photo.


Do not get me wrong, it is a good thing until teenagers start to use it more, attaching the brain to the machine in order to keep the molecules of emotions moving. It results an addiction almost, as one would to have an addiction to alcohol or drugs, relying their happiness on social media.

A recent study shows that teenagers, especially Australian teenagers who are heavy social media users have the most amount of anxiety, argued Erin and David Walsh in Psychology Today . In another study from the University of Michigan, it shows that the more students use social media, the worse they feel about themselves, and their image in society. Yet, most teens are quick to defend themselves when it comes to the negative effects, ignoring the fact that one out of five teens state that they feel worse about themselves with social media.

Also, according to The Guardian, action of self-harm has risen to 68 percent in girls in ages 13-16 years old from years 2011 to 2014 due to the negativity they experienced on social media.

Some teenagers try not trust social media and to attach themselves with it. “It’s interesting how they display themselves on social media compared how they are in real life...[and] no, do not whine to social media, because no one really cares.”, argues Hasmik Akliyan,18.

If a doctor or a pediatrician would to argue that they could not use social media because it is bad for their health, may not be the answer to a solution. “Yes I would continue, who the f*ck is a doctor to tell me...I don’t care if they say it’s bad...” and when asked about whether he thought adolescents would have socialized more or had a better health if there was no such thing as social media, he replied, sarcastically, “No... I would kill myself. I’ve been without my phone for like 12 hours and I was gonna jump off a cliff.” argues back Sarkis Karakour, 17 year old teenager who uses social media on a daily basis.

Nowadays phones are a huge part of a person and taking it away can cause stress such as missing out on the world or the news. Teenagers are our future and if it is causing depression and anxiety for some, we have to look out what is being posted on social media and replace with something more inspiring or motivational, because it is thriving stronger everyday and no one can stop that.

Teenagers will not let go of it, so we might as well change the rules of the game.

Throwing out the salt shaker can save your life

By Linda Tachejian

Are you eating too much salt? Chances are, you are. If you eat Hot Cheetos every day, you are consuming 250 milligrams of sodium—a tenth of the recommended amount per bag.


In the United States, people of all ages eat more salt than the suggested amount which can take a toll on their health overtime. The recommended limit of salt per day for the average American is 2,300 milligrams and 1,500 milligrams for individuals age 50 or older or who have high blood pressure, diabetes, or kidney disease. However, the average American surpasses that amount by consuming around 3,400 milligrams of sodium each day.


“According to a 2016 report by the CDC, 89% of adults and over 90% of children exceeded recommendations for sodium intake between 2009 and 2012,” argues Cathy Fisher, a culinary instructor.


There is a dispute between individuals who believe salt is good for you while others believe salt is bad for you.


Advocates of salt believe ingesting sodium has many reasons as to why it is beneficial to your health. “Sodium is necessary for preventing dehydration, for proper nerve transmission of nerve impulses and for normal functioning of cells,” declares Marta Zaraska, a Washington Post writer.


Consuming salt also relaxes people and helps bones and muscles grow. As a result, advocates tend to believe the benefits of salt outweigh the bad; however, this is not the case.


I interviewed a twenty-year-old man who eats about 3,350 milligrams of sodium a day, adds salt to almost everything he eats, and goes out to eat four to five times a month. However, his weight fluctuates often and his blood pressure is extremely high.


I then interviewed Yeva Mamikonyan, a seventeen-year-old girl who ingests about 1,000 milligrams of sodium a day and goes out to eat once a week. When she eats sodium, she gets dehydrated faster and her stomach starts hurting. I noticed both interviewees feel bloated after consuming salt.


Conversely, those who are against salt believe salt is bad for your health. Eating an abundance of sodium can lead to heart disease, stroke, stomach cancer, hypertension, bloating and weakens bones for young girls and older women. Ingesting sodium also leads to weight fluctuation, straining of the kidneys, swelling of body parts especially in the fingers and face because salt absorbs water. Moreover, adding salt hides the true flavor of food and causes people to overeat which results in weight gain.


“In the U.S., heart disease kills more than 800,000 people each year…[and] currently about 1 in 3 Americans suffer from high blood pressure,” claims Dr. David Samadi, professor of robotic surgery at Hofstra School of Medicine.


In my second set of interviews, both interviewees reported feeling better after limiting salt. An eighteen-year-old woman revealed after she stopped ingesting sodium, she lost a lot of weight, ate less, and has more energy. A sixty-four-year-old man with hypertension confessed when he does consume salt, he suffers from horrible headaches, his stomach is bloated, his blood pressure rises, and he feels heavy.


The reason as to why Americans consume so much salt is because sodium is in everything humans eat. For instance, Fisher informs, the majority of salt humans eat is in, “packaged foods we eat: canned foods, condiments, breads, meats, dairy products, snack foods, and fast foods."


Restaurants also tend to prepare their meals with a lot of salt in order for customers to come back wanting more. Some medicines contain sodium as well. But, in order to stay healthy and add years to your life, you should drastically cut down your salt intake.


How does one do that? By reading labels and checking how much sodium is contained in the foods you buy, you can avoid a lot of salt by buying products that contain little to no salt. Another way to limit your sodium is by not adding any salt to your meals and to refrain from eating out as often as you usually do. In order for your food not to taste plain, you can use substitutes such as herbs and spices to add flavor back into your meals.

People race to be vegan without knowing the track

By Hakob Kazandzhyan

You may ask what is vegan, or most likely you might claim you have heard of it but aren’t so sure what it is. In a nutshell veganism is a lifestyle choice that has become ever so

popular in modern culture.


Being vegan is a dietary choice made by individuals the promotes the absence of animal based meats and products being removed from your diet. Anywhere from eating chicken and beef, as well as avoiding eating eggs and consuming dairy products.


Over the years the lifestyle and the purpose of being a vegan has greatly changed. Originally traced back to Ancient Indian and eastern Mediterranean societies the term veganism wasn’t a coined concept until the early 1940’s. Modeled as an extreme way of vegetarianism, veganism purpose was driven by awareness to animal cruelty. Many people in the vegan community believe that with the absence of animal meat and products in their diets it will encourage awareness to the cruelty that comes with consuming animals.


The problem is frankly a lot of people have different approaches to why they become vegan. Some might argue that it is for their health, becoming vegan and sticking to the diet has been known to promote drastic health improvements such as lowering the risk and severity of type 2 diabetes as well as reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.


These sound like great benefits to becoming vegan, but there are also people driven by other incentives in our society. One of the most formidable reasons being as mentioned before was to promote the protection against the consumption of animals in our dietary lives.


Strangely enough this is only one of the few reasons why people become vegan a matter of fact recently in an interview with a college student from Irvine University Thomas Berejikian who was vegan claimed, “I became vegan when I went to college and it wasn’t for my health I’ve always been great at staying in shape and eating right, I chose to become vegan because a lot of my friends at Irvine were vegan and I thought I would fit in if I became vegan.” As one student claimed that he had become vegan because of the social aspect that he would be praised by his peers and cheered for his actions.


This is a common incentive in vegan culture in our society, many people thanks to ties with social media feel encouraged to do so not because of health but rather for the attention of others, for doing something so noble.


Though this is harmless and it does come with significant health benefits ultimately there are some negative effects of being vegan pairing with the positives. Sure being vegan can help prevent cardiovascular disease, but the vegan diet itself lacks vital nutrients that only proteins of animal products contain such as iron and vitamin D. It also cuts out your main source of protein in your diet. This can cause muscle deficiency (breaking down muscle tissue), weakening of the immune system, and since our bodies are genetically composed to consume meat but with the absence of doing so our bodies can resist the non-protein diet and cause many other health issues such as anorexia.


Even with these odds stacked against why you should go vegan? During a recent interview with owner of Rawkin Juice Kiso Keshishyan she proclaimed that, “regardless no matter what it does to my body I will continue to go vegan knowing that the cause behind my intentions is worthwhile... I rather be the one suffering and know that an animal was spared in my sacrifice...”


Ms. Keshishyan continues to prove that their are vegans out their who stray from the public encore and the health benefits and strive in pursuit to be vegan for the sake of the planet and it’s creatures. However whether you are pro vegan or not it is safe to say whatever you choose as your diet you should be well aware of all the benefits and harmful effects it can have on you. So would you go vegan and if so why?

Fitness: a photo essay

By Rafik Minasyan

From my researching and interviewing, I have found that plenty of people aren’t aware of the various benefits that exercise and being active has on you other than just the physical attributes. Being active on a daily basis can make your life much better in many different ways. It has been scientifically proven people who exercise on a constant basis have less of a problem sleeping and has improved their quality of sleep. ​

Fitness freaks: gym culture's hidden story

By Devon Torres

The gym is more than a place to workout and for many it's a place to tear down your body in order to help rebuild your mind. My journey to find others who share the same passion of being in the gym, led me to interview two other people, who like myself, view the gym more than just a place to workout. Joshua (18), a friend in my high school, Tony (21), a full time college student at CSUN, who works part time at the local 24 hour fitness I attend, and myself. We are all average joes who have used fitness as an outlet to rebuild our inner selves one rep at a time.

I sat down with Joshua to talk to him about why and how he started his fitness journey. Joshua’s journey started unexpectedly with our mutual friend, Brandon, when one day he stepped into a gym and as he claimed at the end “was highly persuaded into buying a membership”. After asking why he continued to attend after that first day he stated that, “[he] felt like if [he] was going to pay for the membership [he] might as well go”.


Josh “the skinny kid” has always seemed like he never really cared about anyone else's opinion. That’s how I know Josh’s 25 pound transformation is all due to him wanting to truly “get fit and healthy.”

After teaching Josh some workouts and basics I’ve had the pleasure of seeing him physically transform. Josh’s views and goals have grown from “just going” to now as he told me, “I wanted to get bigger and stronger and I did this by eating a lot of food and trying to push myself to get stronger every workout. I’m currently getting a little fat so I might bulk and then have to cut soon.”


Joshua explained to me that “although [his] schedule is hectic sometimes, [he] decided [he’ll] always make the time to go to the gym.” Josh’s response was exactly what I was looking for when he was asked how he feels in the gym. He claimed that “lifting calms [him] down when [he's] physically exerted. [His] nerves are calmed which at the same time pumps [him] up with energy when [he] feels the pump from lifting the weights.”


One of the greatest bodybuilders of all time, Arnold Schwarzenegger, once said, “The greatest feeling you can get in a gym is the pump...”

My next step was to find someone who I didn’t know at a personal level. This lead me to Tony. At first glance you could tell Tony is stronger and bigger than your average joe, and I, as a lifter myself, knew the time and dedication it took to get to his level of physical development. After sitting down with Tony I felt the same drive and dedication I feel while living this “fitness lifestyle and journey” that I hoped others would feel.

I asked Tony how he does it and how he fit in school, work and going to the gym along with diet required requirements and what motivated him to start in the first place. He explained, “I was always overweight as a kid and eventually I got really tired of people making fun of me. I decided it was time to not only prove them wrong, but myself as well.”


Tony's time management with school and work means “putting a lot of things on hold like girls, friends and honestly, even [his] family. I'll skip going out on a Friday night to spend it in the gym any day because I love being there. I'm in their 6 days a week.”


I brought up the pump and Tony’s eyes beamed as he went on to tell me with excitement in his voice that “while I’m in the gym there is nothing like the pump I get from lifting weights.”


From counting calories to doing hours of cardio you can see the progress in the body but what's worth more is the satisfaction from the work. I believe I can speak for Tony and Josh when I say that we’re hooked on our iron paradise.

With this plan you may be able to attend your dream vacation without financial issues

By Iliana Kazarosyan

Attending your dream vacation can become a reality by taking simple steps, determining the cost of where you wish to attend and finally saving the money needed in the most effective way.

Most people like to take a break and go on a vacation to escape the stress brought upon them in their everyday lives. Often times people get lost and confused when deciding where they should go or when searching for the perfect deals.

If you’re like me, the perfect place for you would be a getaway place by the beach where you can lay back and relax while watching the beautiful, deep blue waves crash along the shore. However, most vacations like such can be pricey and therefore, take time to save up for.

During my quest to look for the best way to save for a trip, I have found a statistic that shows that “74% of people say they've gone into debt to pay for a vacation, to the tune of $1,108, on average” according to the 2017 LearnVest Money Habits and Confessions Survey. This is not necessary.

For instance, let’s take a look at the Maldives. In order to travel to the Maldives, the cost of an average flight starts from $1,680 per person. However, as you may have concluded, this is not the final cost of the trip.

You would also need to determined the cost of the hotel room. Now, I would think you wouldn’t enjoy staying in a hotel that is rated less than three stars simply because no one likes to

be let down after all the anticipation, so an average three star hotel would cost from around $70.00 a night.

Assuming that you would travel with a partner for a week to the Maldives, that would cost you approximately $3,850. This is a pretty large number that an average worker most likely can't afford right away considering they would still need to use some of their monthly income to pay for their everyday living essentials such as housing, food, clothing, etc.

However, that should not be a factor to prevent anyone from their privilege to have some free time in which they can simply lay back and relax without having to worry about their everyday struggles. This cost can be saved within the right amount of time before the trip.

The most effective way to save for a costly trip is to create a separate savings account in which you have automatic transfers every month. This could be done by determining when you plan to attend the trip.

Let's say you want to go to the Maldives in 3 months. You would have to split the cost which we calculated to be about $3,850, within three months and determine how much money would need to be put aside each month so you have the amount needed before the trip comes around.

After calculations, you would see that this trip would require one to put aside $1,283.33 for 3 months before the amount is all saved and ready to be spent. If you realize that the amount needed to be put aside every month is not so affordable, you may want to change the date of your trip and chose to attend the trip later.

This way you give yourself more time to save for it which ultimately allows you to put aside less money every month because you have a longer amount of time to save.

Through people's’ personal experiences, this has been shown to be the most effective way saving money.

Another common way that people save for a trip is that they budget and limit the amount of money they spend every month. They limit their spending to only things that are essential to them.

This is not as effective because it allows people to make up excuses and they usually don't end up putting aside the money so they stay behind on their savings. You don’t want to risk that from happening.

By creating a savings account with automatic transfers, you can ensure yourself that you won’t miss a single payment and be able to attend that anticipated vacation!

How to finally take your dream trip without having to break the bank

By Fatima Garcia

Ever get the sense that you forgot something when you go on a trip? By following these tips and tricks it will help you to avoid this situation leaving you to enjoy your trip. Three of the most popular places to visit are Cancun Mexico, London England, and Rome Italy.

Cancun is a great place to visit it’s by the ocean, you get to learn about Mexican culture and enjoy the tropical environment.

In London, England you can discover historical sites, London's famous attractions and learn/familiarize with British culture.

Rome, Italy is a great place to try authentic Italian food, visit Roman historical attractions and lastly see the fashion in Rome which happens to be one of the greatest fashion districts in the world.

There are huge concerns surrounding money and how it’s possible to travel on a low budget. There are many books and articles that are published to help people travel, one that I found interesting is by Matt Kepnes (How to Travel the World on $50 a Day: Travel Cheaper, Longer, Smarter), where he states “You don’t need to be rich to travel—you just need to travel smart”. He gives helpful tips, for example, booking cheap flights, finding cheap rooming situations and cutting down expenses by shopping/eating locally.

Not only is this important but knowing about the place you're going to visit is important. By searching on the web or trying to find the news channel of the place you want to visit can give you valuable information to make sure it's safe.

By getting the current currency before traveling will save you a huge amount of time letting you enjoy yourself more and often times by getting the current currency before traveling you might get more money vs when you withdraw money when at your destination you will be receiving less than you would’ve at home.

Some people tend to get sick when traveling especially if going by airplane, however, there are tips to help avoid this there are wristbands that press on your pressure points to help with nausea.

Once at your destination it's important to go to your hotel, motel or other housing situation so that you can get situated. This will also help avoid any inconveniences in the future.

Wherever you are staying at you can ask the front desk about booking activities or advice on what would be best to partake in. This will also help money wise because by eating locally instead of going to places where most tourists go the prices tend to be much higher. It can get very tempting to want to buy a lot of souvenirs especially if there is a store located near where you are staying. The places near the hotels and tourist attractions tend to over price.

Most of your desired destinations will provide pamphlets, articles, and magazines that can help you decide on things that you might want to try while you are there at a reasonable price.

You can also always ask employees of the place where you are staying at to give you information or about their own experiences.

When arriving back home it’s very important to take the time to relax, cleanse, but most importantly sleep. To help make sure you don't get sick and feel less exhausted. Sleep is most important especially if you traveled afar distance since most don’t sleep well and don’t have much energy by sleeping it helps get you back into your routine and restore your energy for the next day.

Most would think to drink coffee but this would worsen your condition, giving you temporary energy and jet lag.

Fashionistas take risks to achieve their dreams

By Jasmine Solito

Fashion is a privilege. It's glamourous and takes one hell of a ride to make it to the top. Getting into this industry is a whole new world because there are always people fighting to become the best of the best. But, what are the struggles and benefits into succeeding in this industry? What's the good and bad journey fashionistas have to risk to get there? An aspiring fashionista is Jasmine Solito who wants to become a fashion stylist. Fashion interests her because “it's fascinating being able to be creative with clothing, making a statement with what you put on”. Solito is about to start college in the fall, like any overachiever she plans to make into the industry by getting a fashion internship and working her way to the top, slowly but surely she's risking her future because “the fashion industry is one competitive career and only the best who are charismatic and not shy have a successful life”.


YouTube star and wardrobe stylist Amy Serrano, speaks on behalf that in order to succeed in the industry and not get taken advantage of you have to be “Persistent, vocal, reliable, hardworking, and confident”. The journey she had to take was rough. From internships she found on craigslist, she finally landed one where she was a costume designer assistant. She was helping style Rihanna and Robin Thicke! Amy then interned for Johnny Wujek after messaging him several times on Facebook. Sounds amazing right? But she was working for free, which meant every designer bag/shoe/clothes she received would be pawned in order to make a living for herself.


Unlike Amy Serrano who had to risk giving free work to become a wardrobe stylist, fashion designer Zac Posen interned at the Metropolitan Museum while attending Parson's in New York. For Posen his journey was tough, he displayed his work in the world by having his model friends during college wear some of his clothes. From starting his brand with his family in his basement apartment, Posen succeeded at age 21. He had entered a world he was “enticed by” as he said in a documentary. The cons of fashion was that Posen had to play that perfect famous role to create his luxury brand, later he would come home and work all night. Posen had an emotional phase, which caused his creative being and voice to get lost, his tyranny almost sacrificed his friends and family.


In the film The Devil Wears Prada, aspiring writer Andrea Sachs gets a job at Runway as an assistant to the demanding fashion magazine editor Miranda, who would later open the doors to her writing career. After multiple times of being treated as nothing in her job, she finally reconstructed herself and up'd her dressing game. She got very attached to her job that she lost her friends and boyfriend. The fashion industry made her become a person she wasn't, but after all Miranda was an opportunity to open the doors for her real writing career. After dealing with humiliation and emotional phases, being a fashion assistant to Miranda landed Andrea her dream writing job.


It's funny how films portray the fashion industry, but in reality Lauren Weisberger wrote this book that later got turned into a movie in recognition of when she used to an assistant for, Anna Wintour. Anna Wintour is the Holy Grail in the fashion industry. She is editor in chief at Vogue magazine. Her “sharp critiques and lack of patience soon earned a few memorable nicknames: Nuclear Wintour”, even a movie that portrayed her as a beast, but that didn't put a dent on Wintour because embracing her personality is how she became powerful. Wintour was born into a wealthy family but she's always been fearless about her decisions. Being one of the most influential figures in the Fashion industry would be one of the many successes she has.


As we can see, the fashion industry is a long journey to take. The struggles are hard, from financial to emotional struggles. But the outlook is that having a strong attitude, being fearless, and having that drive to succeed will lead you to a beneficial life because you'll have your dream job