Hot Take Tuesday, Vol. 1

Here at the Webb Canyon Chronicle, we’ve got a ton of bold, heavy-hitting opinions. While our goal remains to foster student voice, we often get carried away with the weight of our arguments, forgetting the smaller, less pertinent opinions that permeate our daily lives. Through Hot Take Tuesday, the casual opinion returns to the WCC. Each Tuesday this month, check out some of the hottest takes at Webb, about Webb. Enjoy.
Hot Take Tuesday, Vol. 1
February 6th, 2024
Hot Take: Alamo is unmatched

Within the cold brick walls of Holt, floor-to-ceiling windows of Appleby, and grimy halls of North Hutch persists an age-old question: which Webb dorm is the best? This Tuesday, Kenny Clay (‘25) makes his case for Alamo. 

“Highkey, Alamo is the best dorm,” Kenny said. “It has good location to campus, it has single rooms, and I think it’s arguable that we have the best dorm head. [Ms. H] is taking the Alamites to Disneyland, you know.” 

Located at the center of campus, Alamo is the oldest dormitory at Webb. Over the years, the dorm has garnered a particular winning reputation — and, with it, its own crowd of Alamites — that embodies its unique culture. At the end of the day, though, Kenny thinks it comes down to the people. 

“The Alamites just have certain characteristics about them — like, eccentric qualities — that I think when you see someone, you can say it makes sense that they live in Alamo,” Kenny said. “When you get to Alamo, [the culture] is a little different — in a good way. We don’t have any first-years in the dorm, so there’s a lot less tomfoolery that goes on, in a sense. God hates freshmen.” 

February 6th, 2024
February 13th, 2024
Hot Take: the ‘Webb Bubble’ doesn’t exist

The ‘Webb Bubble’ — the belief that the school exists in a sheltered, unaffected echo chamber — is a staple of Webb’s culture. Yet Dr. Mark Dzula, Director of Teaching and Learning Resources, rejects its very existence.  

“A lot of people use the metaphor of the ‘Webb Bubble’ to describe a sense of separation and preciousness that our campus community has,” Dr. Dzula said. “I don’t think it’s accurate nor an apt metaphor.” 

Dr. Dzula claims that, because Webb remains embedded in the real world, there is no barrier that isolates Webb from the outside. And, as Webbies invoke the ‘Webb Bubble’ as an excuse for the community’s shortcomings, he calls for more attentiveness to not only the unique environment of their school, but also its context within the greater, more real world.  

“We definitely live in a distinct context and a distinct environment, but I don’t think it’s that different from the world around us,” Dr. Dzula said. “Be attentive, be present. The world is perhaps more connected than you think.”

February 13th, 2024
February 20th, 2024
Hot Take: Webbies lack moral courage

As leadership selection season nears, rising juniors and seniors — through several applications and interviews — must prove that they are the right person for the job. Moral courage — the ability to overcome fear and social pressure — is the core of leadership at Webb. Yet, Sarah Lantz, Dean of Students, thinks it’s hard to come by. 

“While Webb students are introduced to the idea of moral courage — we probably talk about it more than the average day or boarding school — it is really, really hard to practice,” Dean Lantz said. “While we say, ‘yes, our students have moral courage,’ it’s something that even as adults, we practice.” 

At the core of its mission, Webb commits itself to cultivating students that “act with honor and moral courage” and “lead with distinction.” But, to Dean Lantz, many Webbies don’t always harbor these qualities. 

“I don’t think anybody at Webb has perfect moral courage,” Dean Lantz said. “Courage — it’s a virtue, it’s learned. Webb students probably have the propensity to act on moral courage, to learn, recognize, and practice it more than other high school students… but I also think that they’re high school students.”

February 20th, 2024
February 27th, 2024
Hot Take: class spirit tears us apart

Theme Week. Spirit Week. Webb Day & Night. For years, Webbies of different grades have competed for the title of ‘Best Class at Webb.’ While we all know that the Class of 2024 reigns supreme, Mirabel Raphael (‘24) has reservations about these kinds of activities altogether. 

“From freshman year, [Webb tries] to get you to bond with your class with this idea of ‘class spirit,’” Mirabel said. “You should feel proud of your class and connected to your class, but the way that we try to create that is by fostering division between grades, which is really artificial and baseless.” 

So, what should we do instead? Mirabel suggests activities that promote ‘Webb spirit’ over class competitions like this year’s revamped Spirit Week. Yet, as Webb has invested more into class rivalries, a transition to school-wide spirit activities becomes less and less plausible. 

“I don’t think people see [school-wide spirit] activities as exciting,” Mirabel said. “But the way you get to a real community isn’t through fighting or through a day where you all play games together, enjoy yourself, and nobody loses. It’s more about having a healthy school community overall.”

February 27th, 2024
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About the Contributor
Stratton Rebish, Editor-in-Chief
Stratton Rebish (‘24) is a man of many titles. Holding positions as Head Peer Advisor, Editor-in-Chief of the Webb Canyon Chronicle, the founder and president of the Webb Thespian Group, Stratton is, “kind of a big deal around town,” according to him. But within these responsibilities, he has two main passions: football and theater. As a varsity defensive end and football captain, you might not immediately think of Stratton as a theater kid. A single conversation with Stratton will brighten your day with his bubbly and dramatic tones. His hysterical jokes come from his love of stand-up comedy and comics like Hasan Minhaj. As for sports, he is an avid New York sports fan; the New York Jets and Knicks will forever hold a special place in his heart, even when they disappoint him year after year. Aside from getting grilled for his poor sports team taste, he is a self-proclaimed “aspiring grill savant”. He aspires to be a grill dad and loves a Southeast Asian dish called Satay. And when you hear, “So guys, funny story, right,” be ready for Stratton’s theatrics, because he will always be in character, playin’ his role.  Favorite song: "Life" by Sérgio Mendes

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