Sierra Leone

I thought it was great to learn about the life of kids my age in Africa. It was sad to hear about all the war happening in and around Sierra Leone. The thing that struck me was when I read about kids under the age of ten having a machine gun and taking drugs everyday to stay up. When I read the book A Long Way Gone I really got a sense of how it was living in Sierra Leone at my age. There was a lot of gruesome things that men and kids did to people. It made me feel like I take life for granted not having to deal with war all around me. Sierra Leone’s war with the gruesome deaths has huge impact on the kids.

    Sierra Leone is a very interesting place. There are many different cultures and ways of life. This a very poor place and many people have to go and get water from a river or a stream. Some people farm or hunt and some pick fruits of of trees for their meals. If close to the ocean people fish to eat and sell. There are not many doctors or hospitals to get treated for your health. It is tough to get a good education because there are not many schools and there are no books, pens, teachers, and a place to learn. It is tough to live in a place like this.

    The worst part of Sierra Leone is definitely the war. Many kids and adults have been killed in the last couple decades by military or rebel groups. Kids are being taken by these rebels groups and being forced to kill other people and even their own family. It is very sad to hear about kids killing or being killed. Families sometimes break up in the middle of the war because they are killed or ran away from the war. Most people try to leave the country but, not a lot of people make it to where they want to go.

Sierra Leone is a very good place for mining because of its diamonds. People over the years have fought over the diamonds to make money. The war for the diamonds was name the blood diamond war because there was so many people killed for them. Diamonds were the only way to make big money in Sierra Leone because every country loves diamonds so they could sell them quick and for some money. Sierra Leone is a big place of conflict because of this reason.

Sierra Leone is a very interesting place, but I would never visit there. It is too dangerous or it used to be, because of the war. Most of the soldiers were relentless, they did not care if they were killing a 100 year old lady or a newborn baby. If the war dies down and Sierra Leone calms down it would be great place to live and visit. I hope one day that it can go back to being peaceful and happy.

New Sleek Italian McDonald’s

Italy is known for some of the best food in the entire world. Putting McDonald’s in Italy would be a great success. Italy’s lunch lasts more than and hour and is 3 courses. Dinner is usually begins after 8 P.M. and is also consists of 3 courses. Italian restaurants are mostly family owned and cheap. but, Italy needs a change from their old traditions and McDonald’s would be that change and would be a great foreign investment.

McDonald’s should change the style to more of an Italian restaurant. It should be a McDonald’s cafe, a calm relaxing place to get a coffee in the morning and a good meal at night. Also, everything should be homemade every single day like the true Italian cultural identity. Cappuccinos and macchiatos should be for breakfast, and wine should be served for lunch and dinner. Also, instead of having ice cream for dessert there should be gelato. They should try to also incorporate pasta and tomatoes into their the meals because that is the best meal for most Italians. Pasta comes from China and was brought over to Italy. Most Italian families have it every single week, because it is so sacred. Cannolis should come with every value meal or meal. And, shredded Parmesan cheese should be on every table to cleanse the palate.

Food is very sacred in Italy. The Italy McDonald’s Restaurants should be closed or only opened for breakfast and lunch on Sundays because there was a poll that states that 95% of Italian families eat at home on Sunday. Lunch is the most important meal of the day in Italy because it is when the extended family comes together. They have a 3 course meal that usually starts with an antipasto salad and ends with dessert plus  coffee. Pasta is always a part of lunch and is usually homemade. Italy needs a new sleek restaurant chain and McDonald’s could fit that.

Blowout in South Beach

8291848680_bdd70639d4_bYesterday’s blowout playoff game between the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls had to of been the most physical games in history. There is definitely a rivalry and history between these teams. The Bulls are typically a very tough, physical team based around defense. The Heat on the other hand are based on offense and not as physical as the Bulls. The better team here is obviously Miami, but the Bulls keep getting under their skin and Miami is losing their minds. The referees last night had to break up a fight what seemed like every time down the court. These NBA players are supposed to be role models and when kids see them fighting and swearing they are just going to repeat what their role models do.

There was a total of 51 personal fouls in the game. There was a total of 9 technical fouls in the game and one flagrant foul. Two people on the Bulls got ejected too, Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson. As you can see this was a very physical game. Both the Bulls and the Heat need to stop fighting and just play the game. Especially the Bulls, they get under the Heats skin and then they are the ones who have people get ejected. In the first half it was a close game because the Heat were not focused they were too busy fighting.

Once the second half started it looked like the Bulls did not know what hit them. LeBron James scored 19 points in the first half and 0 in the second half because he was making everyone else on his team look good. Ray Allen and Norris Cole took over the game during the second half. Ray had a couple 3-pointers and (and 1’s). Norris had a couple big 3-pointers also. The Heat ended up beating the Bulls 115-78, the worst loss by the Bulls in playoff history. The Heat out rebounded the Bulls 41 to 28 and the Heat had 20 fast break points while the Bulls had 2. Miami scored 56 points in the paint and the Bulls scored 18. Miami’s biggest lead in the game was 46 points. That is what I call a blowout.

NBA Playoffs

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photo taken by Mike

The NBA playoffs are finally here and I’ll tell you how the first round of the playoffs is going to play out.

In the Western conference I think that the 1 seed Thunder will beat the Rockets. The thunder have 2 very explosive players Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook and they can not be stopped. The Rockets are just not fast enough and they do not have a good enough defender to cover Durant.

There is no doubt that the Spurs will beat the Lakers. The Lakers just lost their star player Kobe Bryant to an Achilles injury. The Lakers have one of the worst defenses in the league and the Spurs have one of the best offenses in the league. The Spurs are a great 3-point shooting team and they love to share the ball.

The Nuggets, Warriors match up is my favorite in the playoff tree. Both teams have some injuries, but I think that the Nuggets will win the series in 6 games. The Nuggets are a very fast, fun team to watch. They have a very good defense which is good because the Warriors have the top 3-point shooter in the league Stephen Curry.

The last match up in the western conference is the Clippers vs Grizzlies. I think that the Clippers will win the series because of their 3-point success, defense, and their great transition offense. The Grizzlies don’t have that star player to take big shots later in the playoffs.

Now I will say the eastern conference series winners.

The Heat, Bucks series is the easiest decision to make out of any series. The Bucks have the worst record out of any team in the playoffs and the Heat have the best record. I know that the Heat will win, and I think they will in 4 games. Their going to win because they have the former MVP LeBron James, great 3-point shooting, great defense, unbelievable transition offense and defense, and their the last years championship winners.

The Knicks and the Celtics are always exciting to watch. You very rarely see a team score over 95 points against the Celtics because of their defense and their patience on offense. I think the Knicks will win the series in 7 games because they are pretty evenly matched, but the Knicks have a star Carmelo Anthony. The Celtics are just to slow to beat the Knicks.

The Pacers and Hawks series is another easy decision. I think the Pacers will easily win the series in 5 games. The pacers are a great shooting and rebounding team. The hawks have good big men, but they need that star guard to be a great team. The Pacers are a very good team and should go far in the playoffs.

The Nets and Bulls series is another very tough decision to make. The Bulls center Noah is hurt ,which is very big for the Nets. The series is tied 1-1 and I think the Nets will win in 7 games. I don’t know very much about either of these teams, but I know their pretty evenly matched.

Mile High Injury List

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taken by Matthew D. Britt

This season the Denver Nuggets are the 3rd on the power rank going into the playoffs. You could say that they are on a bad luck streak. Their lead scorer Ty Lawson is just coming off of an injury and he missed eight of Denver’s last nine games. He has a torn right plantar fascia in his right heel. Last week the Nuggets announced that Danilo Gallinari there starting small forward tore his ACL. There other injury is on there starting power forward Kenneth Faried with a sprained ankle.

Denver is a very good team when they are healthy and very fun to watch. They throw down amazing dunks and alley oops almost every game. I don’t see Denver going very far in the playoffs because they are not healthy enough to play against the big elite teams. They also do not have that one clutch shooter to take the ball in the last few minutes of the game and to take the last shot for the win. If they had nobody hurt then its a different story, I think they can go all the way to the championship with everyone healthy.

Denver is one of my favorite teams in the league and I think next year will be their lucky year. When they get all their guys back they will be good. Denver has done a great job recovering after the trade of their best play Carmelo Anthony a few seasons ago. They really built their team up very quickly to a championship caliber team. Good luck to the Nuggets in the playoffs.

Harlem

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photo taken by Luciano

At first I thought it was bad

It was a stereotype

When I saw it in person I was shocked

It was a huge gallery

Harlem.

Mosaics and art on every block

beautiful spray paint as art

I loved every part

Harlem.

Louisville Finally Wins Big

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photo taken by Adam Glanzman

Tonight’s the night where dreams come true or fall apart for some young basketball players. Its the night of the NCAA Basketball College Championship in Atlanta, Georgia at 9.23 P.M. Eastern time, between Louisville and Michigan University. Louisville is ranked 1. in their division and Michigan is ranked 4. Michigan’s Sophomore point guard, Trey Burke is this year’s Wooden award winner. He is averaging 14.2 points and 6.7 assists per game in the tournament.

Louisville’s record is 34-5 and Michigan’s record is 31-7. I think that they are very evenly matched despite the record. Michigan is apart of the big ten conference which most people including me  think is the toughest division in the country, while Louisville is in the Big East conference which isn’t as tough. Louisville is very deadly on transition offense and in the post for offense and defense. Louisville’s 6’11 center is a very good shot blocker, rebounder, and inside scorer. Michigan is also great on transition offense, but they are a better outside scoring team.

As I watched the game last night Michigan hit 3-pointers that NBA players can’t make. I think that louisville beat michigan because Trey Burke was in foul trouble. I think Louisville’s coach is smarter than Michigan’s coach and that played a big part in the game. Congratulations to Louisville and their fans and I hope Kevin Ware gets better.