On Rachel's Legacy, the fiscal cliff, free college applications, the Purple, and music award shows...

Make it a point to attend Rachel’s Legacy at CHS
When Rachel's Challenge came to Crookston High School last year, both students and staff were mesmerized by the organization's powerful message of compassion and kindness. Even more students will get the chance to experience this unique program this year, called Rachel's Legacy, to carry on deceased teen Rachel Scott's good deeds. Those events take place Tuesday during the day. The evening program for the public, beginning at 7 p.m. in the CHS auditorium, promises to be another eye-opener. Everyone in the community who can should attend Tuesday evening. You might be pleasantly surprised at just how enjoyable, and life-changing, it is.

Enough with this 'fiscal cliff' talk
Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke coined the phrase “fiscal cliff,” and by now he probably wishes he’d have followed in the footsteps of former NBA coach Pat Riley, with “Three-peat,” and copyrighted the phrase. Enough with the “fiscal cliff”! When you think of falling off a cliff, you think of dying, do you not? You think of plunging, screaming the whole way, and when you splat on the hard ground, all that’s left of you is a bag of skin full of jelly. The fiscal situation facing the United States if President Obama and Congress can’t come up with a deal is more like a fiscal valley. The gross domestic product will retract, jobs will be lost, and the “great recession” we’ve so slowly been climbing out of for a couple of years could return. But no one will splat. So quit giving the national press another excuse to come up with a fancy “fiscal cliff” graphic accompanied by ominous music and just call it what it is: A crucial challenge that needs to be overcome.

Students, apply for free
Anyone in the process of choosing a college knows it will be anything but inexpensive. Besides classes, you have the expenses of boarding, books, and even application fees at certain schools. Paying to apply for college? That seems a bit ludicrous. Thanks to Minnesota Application College Week, Nov. 12-16, incoming college students are given the chance to apply to regional Minnesota schools for free. Achieve More will be bringing college representatives to the high school Nov. 13-15 to help students fill out applications and answer questions they may have. Students will fill out applications from 10-11 a.m. Nov. 13-15, and parents will be invited to attend a meeting about financial aid, ACT/SAT scores, college applications and much more on Nov. 15 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium. Every penny counts when it comes to saving up for college, and students should take advantage of this opportunity to avoid an application fee, and get some answers. Katie Davidson

A little consistency from the Purple, please
The Minnesota Vikings are bipolar! What is with that team? They looked vanilla in the previous four games and all hope seems lost when they main receiving threat, Percy Harvin, gets injured. Nonetheless, Christian Ponder remembered how solid he was against the 49ers in week three and looked competent in the Vikings' 34-24 win over the Detroit Lions this week. Now things don't just get tough for the Purple, they get brutal. After a bye next week, the Vikings final six games of the regular season are against the Bears, Packers, Rams and Texans. Those teams are a combined 24-11-1 at this point. Minnesota's previous opponents are currently a combined 39-43-1. Calling the Vikings' final six games "tough" is an understatement. Let's hope Ponder stays competent, Adrian Peterson continues running wild and Harvin gets back soon.

A little less award shows overkill
If  you were asked how many music awards there are, what would be your answer? Well, you probably wouldn't get close to it. This is the point that needs to be made. There are too many televised music awards shows. There are the Billboards, Video Music Awards, and Grammys. But it doesn't stop there. The American Music Awards are coming up this Sunday. Is it really necessary when you've already got "top playlist" shows like ones listed above? It's true that they draw viewers and are very entertaining but where can the line be drawn? Let's take country music, for example. There are four shows for that alone, which seems excessive. If they want to have a separate awards show for country, that's fine, but they should cut it down by two. The Tony's, which honors Broadway, is the only televised awards show for that genre, and that's all they need. The ones in charge of conducting all of these music awards shows should take after the Tony's and scale back the amount that is shown on TV (or eliminate some awards altogether). All you need is the CMAs, the Grammy's and one other show that awards the Top 40. That's it. Amanda Wagner