the legacy of 2009

When President Obama took office in January 2009, the country was on edge, the economy in free-fall. The federal education law, known as No Child Left Behind, was also in need of an update after earning the ire of teachers, parents and politicians alike. In short, there was much to do.

In time, that update would come, but President Obama’s education legacy begins, oddly enough, with his plan to bolster the faltering economy.

Obama’s Impact On America’s Schools

Illustration: LA Johnson/NPR

Rosenbaum House, Frank Lloyd Wright


Short documentary examining the legacy of the female architects trained and employed by FLW, who were notably numerous in comparison to almost any other school or practice of the time.

Three River Episodes that Should’ve Been:

With the first River/Doctor solo episode less than a week away (!!!!) I’ve been thinking back on all the times River could’ve and frankly should’ve had a solo episode before now and it all came out like this.

Planet of the Dead

David Tennant was leaving the role as the Tenth Doctor, finishing off his Who legacy with a handful of Specials sprinkled over 2009 and this was the second one. It would’ve been so ideal for River to have popped up at Easter and fulfilled solo on screen adventure with Ten before he exploded into regeneration-ville. And think about it: the companion we do have is Lady Christina de Souza. She’s a Lady, a thief, she enjoys taking the lead in her scenes with Ten, there’s an element of attraction where she plants one on him, and her Lady to his Lord is played up symbolically because they’re trying to give a sense of her being his equal in the episode. All of those things are what River Song does later and, with more heart, does better. It would’ve been far more rewarding to have River in place of Christina to further flesh out pre-Library!River and the River/Ten (and River/future!Doctors) dynamic. I keep thinking how I can see River pulling off the Cup of Athelstan heist and then getting stuck on San Helios and having her archaeology skills come into play to figure out the mystery of the planet and what happened to it.

The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe

Matt Smith’s second Christmas Special. Eleven just married River Song in the previous season finale and left Amy and Rory believing him dead, without knowing River would pop off after the Byzantium and set them straight. Why the hell is he off running around without his wife and telling Madge Arwell he has no family? He’s got River, who know is the only other person in on their secret! He should’ve been spending this Christmas with her and then, at the end, when he finally comes to his senses and decides to tell Amy and Rory the truth Family Pond the whole gets to have Christmas dinner together because Amy and Rory saved two empty seats.

The Snowmen

Matt Smith’s third Christmas Special, right after the Angel sends Rory back to 1938 New York and Amy elects to go with him, leaving the Doctor devastated. Problem is, River was also devastated, but she stayed strong for him and wanted to help him through the loss of his best friends, even though said friends were also her parents. She even inspires the Afterword, both for Amy and the Doctor’s memory of the last page. Unfortunately, after that moment, she doesn’t make another appearance in TATM. Fine, okay, but then she’s also vanished in “The Snowmen” and the Doctor has retired to a cloud. It’s unclear what happened to River until “The Name of the Doctor,” which seems to imply there’s been a huge time jump and he took her to Darillium and lost her shortly after losing her parents. Very not cool. This episode should have been a transition between the Ponds and Clara, allowing the Doctor and more importantly River to grieve openly, since she didn’t get that at the end of the previous episode and Eleven only realizes at the end that he was being a selfish twit. It could’ve ended with River leaving because she needed her own space and some kind of cheeky clue leading into 7x06, where the Doctor could’ve kicked off the second part of the season by finding the next Clara echo. Much as I love Clara (and “The Snowmen” is, of today, my favorite Christmas episode–though that might change in a week), it was so very unfair to jump right into her storyline like that right after Christmas and write River out without a word or allowing her to properly mourn. River lost her parents, wasn’t even in the last few minutes of TATM, and then was swept under the rug in the very next episode and right up until the end of the season just to get Clara into the mix and that was not right.

And while I’m at it, a handful of instances that weren’t necessarily “River episodes,” but should’ve had River in cameo or at least referenced:

  • The Girl Who Waited: Amy proclaims she hates the Doctor for not coming back for her in time on Apalapucia. This is a woman who has spent decades on her own, the time has allowed her to think of every way the Doctor has let her down, and she is incredibly hardened by that that it takes her own past self to break through. It really does not make sense that Old Amy didn’t bring up Melody/River among her reasons for hating the Doctor.
  • Pond Life: it covers four months in Amy and Rory’s home life and despite the title, still manages to cover more of the Doctor’s perspective than theirs. Why couldn’t River have appeared a couple times, either during the Doctor’s adventures or visiting her parents?
  • Asylum of the Daleks: while Amy’s infertility issues due to Kovarian and Demon’s Run are understandable and, given her characterization, “giving Rory up” was totally in character, River should’ve at least been mentioned because Amy and Rory did have a biological child. She should’ve been brought up and their complex feelings over her kidnapping and their inability to raise her like a normal set of parents should’ve been talked about as a part of Amy’s and Rory’s perspectives on the near-divorce and infertility and where they could go from there once that much needed hashing out occurred.
  • Dinosaurs on a Spaceship: when Nefertit asks Amy if the Doctor has a Queen, Amy should’ve proudly told her that yes he does and that Queen is her very own daughter!
  • The Power of Three: a literal year is spent in Amy and Rory’s life. A year that aliens slowly invaded Earth and the Doctor lived with them. River should’ve popped in for visits (whether via a cameo from Kingston or a body double during montage scenes), sent mail, had a phone call (one-sided or voiceover depending on Kingston’s availability), and definitely showed up for her parents’ big anniversary party!
  • P.S.: this is the most egregious of all by actually replacing the established character of River with the just-made-up character of Anthony, recycling the “grandkid that’s older than you bit is super weird” joke, and not even so much as referencing River let along allowing her to be with Anthony when Rory’s goodbye letter is hand delivered. Giving her grandfather closure should’ve been River’s moment, with her brother at her side as a bonus. How beautiful would that have been?

Pics: UCLA-Stanford Football, Palo Alto, CA. October 15, 2015; Laird Q. Cagan Stadium, Palo Alto, CA. September 12, 2008 (Stanford’s 1-1 overtime tie against UNC, with KO netting the equalizer)

Glory Days

Twinned legacies at the Cardinal

Kelley O’ Hara, 2006-2009:

2009: Led the nation in goals (26) and points (65)
2009: MAC Hermann Trophy
2009: Soccer America Player of the Year
2009: Top Drawer Soccer’s Player of the Year
(co-winner with Christen Press)
2009: NSCAA Scholar Athlete of the Year
2009: Soccer America MVPs first team
2009: Pac-10 Conference’s Player of the Year
2009: ESPN The Magazine first-team Academic All-American
2009: Finalist, College Cup Championship

Christen Press, 2007-2010:

2010: Led the nation in goals (26) and points (60)
2010: MAC Hermann Trophy
2010: Soccer America Player of the Year
2010: Top Drawer Soccer’s Player of the Year
2009: Top Drawer Soccer’s Player of the Year
(co-winner with Kelley O’ Hara)
2009 & 2010: Soccer America MVPs first team
2010: Pac-10 Conference’s Player of the Year
2010: ESPN The Magazine first-team Academic All-American
2009 & 2010: Finalist, College Cup Championship

Press also holds the career record in goals (71), points (183) and assists (41) at the Card.

this man was beautiful inside and out, and put so many smiles on peoples faces as well as making millions cry. thank you for everything that you gave to us Michael, may your legacy live on forever. 1958-2009

Let’s be honest, bands with good music started to emerge during the late 80′s, 90′s and early 2000 like Green Day, Sum 41, The All-American Rejects, Boys Like Girls, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Typecast, Yellowcard, Simple Plan, My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, Panic! At The Disco, All Time Low, etc. Some of them disbanded, and some of them still making good music. But those who disbanded, their music will always stay in our hearts because there’s no expiration to good music, ever. And now it’s 2015, where Paramore, Twenty One Pilots, Arctic Monkeys, Foster The People, The 1975, Bastille, Echosmith, PVRIS, CHVRCHES, Catfish and The Bottlemen, and many other bands who some of them started in 2008 or 2009 are continuing the legacy of what a good band is. And what music we really need. Because radio stations mostly played crappy songs nowadays. And some teenagers now only like bands with good looks but without originality at all. And some of them really are auto-tuned. As much as I miss the good ole days where music is much appreciated because of raw talent, I also am having hope with the good bands of these days. I just hope teenagers of today’s generation will appreciate them more. That they will love a certain band because of their music and not because of good looks or because it’s trendy. That they will try to explore music other than what’s mainstream. Because somewhere out there, there are teenager boys and girls who are trying to form a band that can change our lives someday.