Local News

Young Observers: Mid-November Edition

Thanksgiving is right around the corner. The idea of being grateful differs for each person. Besides the usual food, family and friends, here are some of the fascinating reasons Fullerton teens are grateful for.

“I’m grateful for [myself]. Yes, that sounds narcissistic, but what can I say? I learned how to truly focus on improving myself…working on ‘that girl’.” ~ Zoey

“I’m thankful for the little moments, such as saying ‘hi’ to a stranger or comforting a friend.” ~ Arum

“[I’m thankful to be] alive. Some people do not have a choice due to terminal illness, accident, etc.” ~ Israela

“Getting to meet a lot of new people while finding myself [is something I am thankful for].” ~ Lauren

“Teachers that can actually teach and know what is best for their students.” ~ Iris

“I [am thankful to be able to go] to school in person [and enjoy the] high school experience.” ~ Hailey

“[I am thankful to have] the ability to draw [since it] helps [me] destress.” ~ Alli

“The way I grew as a person while stuck at home [for] so long.” ~ Daniella

“Being able to go out with friends, do stuff, and get boba with them whenever I want.” ~ Ryan

“I’m thankful for having a ride to get to places…[and] for having wifi.” ~ Jared

May these grateful thoughts inspire us all to be MINDFUL of life’s blessings, both big and small.  And in the midst of uncertainties and challenges, may these blessings serve to comfort us and strengthen our resolve to look on the bright side.

The Great American Smokeout, sponsored by the American Cancer Society, is a 24-hour awareness event that occurs on the third Thursday of November each year (this year it will fall on November 18th). It is a time for smokers to give up smoking for the whole day, sort of as a challenge.

This is meant to encourage new or long-time smokers to quit forever. Although smoking causes major health problems, many Americans still do it consistently, which led to this annual event.

The Great American Smokeout dates back to 1970, when a high school counselor in Massachusetts persuaded people to quit smoking for a day only and donate the money that would have been spent on cigarettes to a high school scholarship program.

Over the next few years, states such as Minnesota and California started holding days similar to this one, and after they received stunning results (in 1976 California got 1 million people to stop smoking for a day), the American Cancer Society held the first nationwide smokeout in 1977.

Forty-five years later, the Great American Smokeout continues to inspire people throughout America to quit smoking. The percentage of smokers in the U.S. is at the lowest it has ever been and is still on a constant trend downwards.

The government has placed high taxes on smoking and commercials showing the devastating effects of it have been played throughout the nation. However, 38 million Americans continue to smoke despite the warnings. 20% of yearly deaths in the United States are caused by smoking-related illnesses.

I myself have a family member who smokes regularly, and although he has been holding up well, I am afraid of the harmful effects it will have on his internal organs that may limit him in the future. He already shows signs of these effects as he coughs a lot sometimes.

I am not in favor of smoking by any means, and I support the actions taken to stop smoking. If you or someone you know is an avid smoker, inform them of this event or take part in it yourself. It may benefit your life for years to come.

Say hello to Frida, a beautiful tortoise-shell mini rex rabbit, who adores treats.

She is a sweet one year-old who was brought to the OC Animal Shelter by a Good Samaritan. Although she was immensely frightened, ragged, and not keen on socializing with the staff, she quickly warmed up to the treats. (Remember: the way to an animal’s heart is through its stomach, just the way it goes with humans). 

She can be found greeting you at the front of her kennel. She loves playing in her purple bunny tube and munching happily on hay cubes.

Fun Fact: Did you know that the pouch of fat below Frida’s chin is called a “dewlap”? It provides a space where a female bunny can pull out fluffy fur to line her nest. She will snooze away in the nest with her babies.

Another fun fact: Did you know that baby bunnies are called “kittens”?

To find out more, go to ocpetinfo.com or call (714) 935-6848 ANIMAL ID: A173792


Q: Is a red panda a panda or a racoon?

A: Research has shown that a red panda is more related to a racoon than a panda. It is a herbivore and native to the eastern Himalayas and southwestern China.

It is estimated that there are fewer than ten thousand mature individuals. Habitat loss, poaching, and fragmentation are only a few reasons.

Around ten thousand die each year, and seven thousand of that ten thousand die from deforestation. Without red pandas, bamboo plants would go out of control, devastating other plants and the environment.

Backdropped by 1926 Shanghai humming with life and debauchery, These Violent Delights follows Juliette Cai, heir to the Scarlet Gang, who watches angrily as her city falls further into the clutches of white foreigners. Just as worrying as the threat of colonialism is the sudden appearance of a monster that causes people to tear out their own throats.

The only way Juliette can defeat the monster and save her people is to work with Roma Montagov, heir to the rival Russian White Flowers and the boy she once loved—before he betrayed her.

After a recent reread of this book and its sequel (Our Violent Ends), it’s clear to see how this book ended up on so many “best of 2020” lists. With a striking exploration of colonialism and compelling characters to obsess over, this debut historical fantasy marks Chloe Gong as an author to look out for in the coming years.

Gong’s writing brings 1920s Shanghai to life in all its glittering glory. Her beautiful prose is full of details; it makes you feel as if you yourself are walking down the crowded streets of the City or sitting in the back of a lively nightclub, but in a way that doesn’t take attention away from the story.

What I truly loved about this book, though, was the way it thoughtfully portrayed and commented on Western imperialism. There’s an aspect that is so often concealed, but is revealed in this book—how insidious and deeply embedded the West is in Shanghai and many other non-Western places, even when people are determined to shut it out.  Written to flow alongside the tragic story of two lovers who seem destined to have everything around them fall apart, I can’t wait for others to fall in love with it just as I did.

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  1. I am always so impressed by the thoughts of these young observers. They are great contributors to the paper and they give me hope for the future of the world under their direction.