All posts by leobrockwrites

I like to write and such.

My experience at a D1 recruitment camp

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A big aspect of being a part of competitive sports is hopefully playing at the next level after high school: college.

I am one of the many people that play sports that want to play in college, in particular the sport of lacrosse. I play on a club team whose purpose is to expose us to a higher level of play and to colleges. This summer I played lacrosse with my club team in Utah, Colorado, and Milwaukee. All of these trips were meant to expose us to college recruits. 

After this summer, I began to get many emails from colleges from all over the United States. Most of them are just advertising and nothing personal but I did get a few personal emails directly from coaches. They asked me to come visit their campus and participate in their recruitment camps.

The process of choosing which college to visit involves studying the level of play, coaching, academics, location, and interest. I narrowed down these emails to a college in North Carolina called High Point University. They were holding a recruitment camp at their campus, so my dad and I flew there to see what it was about.

This was my first time ever visiting a college for sports, so I was pretty anxious. When we arrived at the field for the first day out of the 3-day camp, there was upwards of 250 kids there, way way more than I expected. There where kids from all over the country and all levels of play. We all were spoken to by the coaches as a group and they explained their expectations of intensity, effort, and discipline. This is a Division 1 program so it was very serious. 

We got split up into 20 player teams and through the weekend we worked with each other and scrimmaged against other teams. All over the field there were coaches from other colleges watching us play. This can create a lot of pressure. 

After we’d play and practice, they gave us tours of the locker rooms, campus, and dorms. There were also motivational speakers that talked to us about staying healthy and being in good mental and physical shape in order to play at a Division 1 level. 

Overall, this was a very good experience and helped me know and understand what is expected in the next level of play and also exposed me to my competition to get there. I learned a lot about myself and what I need to do to get better and was also a great confidence booster knowing I could compete at the highest level of college sports. I plan on doing a few more of these with different colleges to help myself decide what I want to do and be ready to start my life as an adult. 

Top 5 gifts for hockey players

  1. Pacific rink hockey bag
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I’ll start with the most expensive gift at $150, a pacific rink hockey backpack. 

These backpacks are admired by all hockey players because of their perfect design to carry your skates, gloves, helmet, and any other clothes or items you choose to bring with you. This backpack is the perfect travel bag for adventures out to play some pond hockey, or just going to the outdoor rink. As one would say, the price is worth it.

  1. Lizard skin stick grip
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Next is a very affordable stocking stuffer, called the Lizard Skin. It’s a better substitute for your usual hockey tape; instead this one lasts 10 times and long and has 10 times the grip. This product is 10 dollars and comes in many patterns and colors. 

  1. Light up puck
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The Lit Puck is a super cool invention to keep the hockey player out of the house until the cows come home. Instead of hockey fun being over at dark, this light up puck allows you to see the puck and play the game from dusk to dawn (if you can handle the cold). This product starts around $19.99.

  1. Sauce kit
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The hockey sauce kit is a portable, all year around and fun product. It’s two small individual nets that you set apart from each other very similar to bean bag toss, except you’re trying to shoot a puck into the net. This product can also be used for accuracy training in your shooting. This product starts around $30-40.

  1. Stanley cup glass
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This legendary trophy could be the next cup for your favorite drink (like root beer). You can use it for the next championship or just to show off to your friends. This product is a hockey collectable, and would surely impress a hockey player or hockey fanatic. This product goes for $30

Top Five weirdest phobias

1) Monophobia

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To start this list, I’ll begin with one of the most modern phobias that affects a lot of us teens. Monophobia consists of feelings of anxiety towards not having cell service, not having one’s phone charged, having no credit on one’s phone or misplacing it. It is believed that over 50 percent of cell phone users are affected by monophobia.

2) Ablutophobia

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Ablutophobia is the persistent fear of cleaning, washing or bathing and occurs more in children and women than men. It is not a very common phobia.

3) Arachibutyrophobia

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Now this I have to say…is a very, very, weird phobia. Arachibutyrophobia the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth. As with all other phobias, the symptoms of arachibutyrophobia involve panic, dread, terror, anxiety, rapid heartbeat and shortness of breath when the peanut butter is wedged on the roof of the consumer’s mouth.

4) Didaskaleinophobia

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While a fun little reason to skip class, didaskaleinophobia is actually a legitimate fear of going to school. Commonly known as a “school phobia,” the fear is more prevalent in younger students (ages 7 to 11), and is believed to stem from anxiety triggered by being separated from their parents. It can also be the result of bullying.

5) Heliophobia

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The last fear on this list is also a little reference to Howie from the movie Benchwarmers and that is the fear of sunlight. A rare but unfortunate condition. Not only does going out in the sun instigate severe feelings of anxiety and panic in sufferers, but those suffering from heliophobia may also experience fear of bright lights. Most often, the fear or condition is associated with an anxiety about the perceived dangers of the sun.

4 places in Minnesota to visit this winter

I think that all Minnesotans can agree that our winters are cold.

But, there are two kinds of Minnesotans during the winter: those who embrace the cold, and those who don’t. This article is a list of activities to do this winter to bring out the inner, cold, Minnesotan within you.

1) Lake Superior Ice caves

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The Lake Superior Ice caves are a truly amazing place to visit this winter.

It’s an amazing experience that has been around for a billion years. People say you can’t imagine the beauty of it until you see it for yourself. The caves are in a rural section of the coastline and there is a 1 mile hike across the frozen coast to reach them.

When you arrive, you can wander inside the caves and admire the pink, deep blue, white, and glass-like icicles that surround you from left to right, and above. In certain parts you can slide down little hills of ice and crawl inside concaves that are nothing like you’ve ever seen before.

It’s best to visit sooner rather than later, because of climate change not allowing this amazing event to occur every year. Although you might want to dress warm if you do go. Very warm.

2) Roseville Oval 

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The Roseville oval is a huge outdoor skating rink for hockey players, figure skaters, and just about anyone regardless of their skill level at skating. The Roseville oval is unique because of its size and is definitely a place to spend one of your cold days this winter.

 3) Keg and Case Market

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Another way to enjoy your Minnesota winter, without having to deal with the cold, is to visit the Keg and Case Marketplace on West 7th Street, in Saint Paul.

This market is very unique and doesn’t offer what your normal farmer’s market would. The stores here vary from, bubble tea and homemade cotton candy, to a mushroom farm and pottery.

It’s a very warm, fun, and cozy atmosphere. Once you go, you’ll just want to keep coming back.

4) Saint Paul Winter Carnival

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The Saint Paul Winter Carnival is an event, more of a tradition, that has been happening in Minnesota for a little over a hundred and fifty years! This carnival consists of ice sculptures, ice themed games, food trucks, vendors, and the classic Vulcans Vs King Boreas parade/ battle to determine if we will have a long winter or spring is on its way.

Overall, these are fun, entertaining, and unique places to visit in Minnesota this winter. You’re sure to be amazed with all of them, and to be surrounded with Minnesota culture.

Why you should get your drivers license sooner rather than later

I’ll start this off with assuming most of you have ridden in a car before, but once you start to take your first steps into high school you’ll most likely find yourself riding in a car with a teenager.

A TEENAGER ?? I know.

When I first got into high school never did I ever imagine my friends would be driving me around. Having this privilege of riding around with your friends is amazing, but the worst part about it is you might not even have your driving permit or license yourself.

You begin to wish, “Oh boy, why didn’t I get my driving permit/license as soon as possible?”

Well, to save you from these haunted and terrorizing thoughts, I will write about some of the reasons why you should get your permit/license as soon as possible.This can also possibly be used as a motive, or something, to show your parents.

Firstly, having your license will help you with transport to school. Having your license and being able to drive yourself around will make it a lot easier on not just you, but also your parents trying to figure out a ride situation. This impacts greatly on families who have parents that go to work early and aren’t around to give kids rides to school, kids that don’t have a bus, kids that live far away, and kids with siblings.

Another great reason to get your license early is transport to after school sports, and activities. When your parent or guardian is not around to give you a ride to one of these after school priorities, it can become so much more complicated trying to find another last minute ride or carpool. With your license, you are able to get yourself to these places regardless if your parent is home or not.

Even though there are many more great reasons to get your license early such as getting to your job, having a car for emergencies, and showing manifestation of good citizenship, having your license is a great way for a teenager to symbolize independence and coming of age.

There are few achievements a teen would find significant and a symbol of independence, but one of these achievements is applying for a driver’s license and driving your own car without fear or being caught or penalized by authorities. It’s a great feeling to finally have true freedom and true responsibility.

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I hope these reasons help you find motivation to go get your license or permit, or also maybe help your convince your parents to let you.

Until my next article, I’ll leave you with this one.

Boys hygiene for after gym class

A part of Highland’s course credit system says you are required to take a gym class. Gym class pushes you to your physical limits (not really), makes you a better athlete (most definitely not), but most of all it makes you sweat.

I know I don’t appreciate going to my next class with a wet shirt, sweaty forehead, and smelling terrible, and other people don’t appreciate it either. 

These are tips for boys to look, smell, feel, and be presentable for class after gym class.

Wear deodorant

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This is probably the most crucial aspect to boys hygiene in any situation. Deodorants are used to kill odor-producing bacteria, while antiperspirants block sweat glands to keep you from sweating. Many products today contain both. In other words, it prevents you from sweating and smelling as much as you would if you weren’t wearing deodorant. Wear it. It’s just the right thing to do.

Extra shirt

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When you sweat it obviously makes your skin wet, and when you’re wearing a t-shirt, all of your sweat gets soaked in your shirt till it sticks to your back. Having another (CLEAN) shirt in your backpack to change into after will make you feel way more comfortable, look better, and you won’t smell terrible. Also, it prevents you from getting back acne (bacne) in comparison to if you wore your sweaty shirt around all day. 

Sweatin’ Towel 

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This step is not completely critical, but it can make your life just a little less sticky. Having a towel to wipe yourself off with before you put on your new shirt will make you drier and prevent old sweat from soaking into your new one. This will leave you with a completely dry shirt!

Shower supplies

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If you’ve got the time, you could take a shower after gym class. Highland Park Senior High has showers in the boy’s locker room. You can bring body wash, shampoo, conditioner, and whatever other shower products you’d like. Then, bring a towel as well for afterwards so you can dry yourself off. This would be the most effective way out of all these steps for having the best hygiene in school.

I hope that these tips will help you look, smell, and feel cleaner and fresher after grueling gym class.

Until my next article, I’ll leave you with this one.

How to apply for a job

Now that we teens are getting older, we start to feel the need to have money. Our parents can only cover for so much of our impulse buys, so they stop buying them for us. They tell you that you need a job. A job, I know. Never in a million years did I think I’d hear that sentence so soon. To get a job, you need to apply for one.

Here are the common steps you’ll take to apply for a job.

1) Find local businesses that are hiring 

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Go around your town, or city, and look for businesses that are hiring. Very often they will have a sign outside the store saying that they are hiring. You should be more interested in local businesses because they usually are more likely to hire you and pay more than corporate organizations. 

2) What you need

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Besides a good attitude and a firm handshake, things that you legally need to bring when you’re going to apply for a job are: a form of ID (school ID, Gov ID), your social security card, and any other form of identification. Also, you need to be 16 years of age or older (usually).

3) Ask for an application

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For most businesses, you can walk inside and ask any worker for an application. They will get you an application or direct you to where you can find one. Applications are normally a paper packet but at some corporate businesses they are online. On these applications you would fill out your personal information, and questions specific to the job. 

4) Ask for the manager

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Once you are done filling out your application, ask an employee if his or her manager is available to talk to. If they say yes, their manager will come out and talk to you. Usually they ask about yourself, what hours you could work, if you’ve had jobs in the past, and usually general, easy to answer questions. Talking to the manager can set a very good first impression. If they are not available (very unlikely), it’s no big deal, it might just take longer to find out if you got the job or not.

5) Apply for more

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Just like applying for college, you don’t just apply for one. It’s always good to apply for multiple jobs, therefore you have options and also a rebound if you don’t get the first job you applied for. It’s a little extra work, but it’s worth it if you want a job.

I hope that these steps will help you apply for jobs in the future.

Until my next article, I’ll leave you with this one.

5 tips on how to become a better public speaker

Have you ever stressed out for days before you have to present in front of a class?

Or when you’re presenting and all you can do is fidget with your sweatshirt laces and pace around awkwardly?

Maybe you just can’t stop looking at the ground when you’re talking because you’re scared that people are giving you weird looks while you are in front of the class.

If you have experienced any of these, then this article is for you!

My name is Leo Brock, and I have struggled with all of these and many more. Over the last 2018-2019 school year, I have become a lot more confident with my public speaking.

Here are some tips for you to become a better public speaker!

1)Volunteer FIRST.

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When the teacher asks if anyone wants to volunteer, go for it. There are absolutely no downsides to it when you look further into volunteering.

If you volunteer to go first, it impresses your teacher, you can get it over with right away, and there is nothing before you for your classmates and teacher to base your presentation on. You’ll be completely original.

2) Scan the walls

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Alright, you managed to get in front of the class…you’re presenting…what do you do with those lovely big eyes of yours?

I know that it can be nerve racking looking up. But the best way to keep your eyes ahead of you is to slowly look to your right, and move your way to your left around the perimeter of the wall. This way you won’t be looking at the ground or have to look at your classmates.

Your teacher will like that you have your head up looking at your classmates but little do they know you’re just looking at all of their kitten posters along the walls.

3)Speak with your hands

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What I’ve always had the most trouble with is not knowing what to do with my hands.

It can be very off putting to teachers if you are fidgeting with something while you’re presenting and it’s visually distracting. A good way to get rid of that is when you are talking, use your hands to put emphasis behind your words.

For example, you can point at pictures or the subject you are talking about on your presentation. Also, you can use your hands to physically describe something whether it’s the size, or shape, or action of what you are talking about. 

Stick it.

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Now… those feet of yours. When you go up in front of the class. Find a spot and STAY THERE. Don’t move your feet.

Stand straight with good posture and you’ll be the best looking presenter of the day.

5) You made it.

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The biggest key to a presentation is being confident. Even if what you’re presenting isn’t that good, just think that you volunteered to go up in front of the class and followed the last 4 steps perfectly.

No one else in that class did that except you.

Speak loudly, so you can hear your own voice bouncing off the walls. Also, think to yourself…when this presentation is over, you’re done, and you’ve got nothing else to worry about. You are currently killing your presentation and you can get happy knowing it’ll finally be over soon. That alone will raise that voice up a little bit too. 

I very much hope these tips have helped you, they have most certainly helped me.

Until my next article, I’ll leave you with this one.