This past week, Ms. Todd treated her new AP Chemistry students to their first test of the year. Many students enrolled in the course admitted to being surprised when the chemistry teacher first scheduled the examination.
“I remember thinking, huh, I thought Chem was one of those classes where you sit in circles and talk about how things made you feel,” confessed Sam Martin. It’s an easy mistake to make, Sam.
In the past, students have often been confused by the feel-good, world-explaining sense of enlightenment and greater purpose attained from Chem Honors, and assumed that the Advanced Placement level would bring them the same sense of emotional fulfillment. After the first few weeks of the course, however, many juniors were seen prowling around the cafeteria, textbook under one arm, muttering mnemonic devices for gas laws and molecular geometry structures.
“I’m still stuck on sig figs,” Taylor Hawkins sighed. “I don’t know what I was thinking.”
Hawkins and Martin were not the only students to be greatly effected by the extra pressure and stress of AP Chemistry. They and several of their peers left Ms. Todd’s class the first day after the test to lie down in the clinic.
“I thought I was a science person until I got back my test and saw I had an 87. I’ve never gotten below a 94 in a class that wasn’t a language,” said Katie Monks. “Honestly, I just needed a break from it, you know?”
Ms. Todd has had to deal with consistent absences from her class, as well as a slew of tardies, most likely students seeing just how long they can wait before they resign themselves to actually learning things.
Ben Bowers has lost all self confidence. “I might switch to AP Bio. I have a friend there. It’s easy, right?”
"Do you have any family photos that you don’t want?
Are you gonna eat those fries?
What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
You wanna write each others’ letters of recommendation?
Will you not go to the dance with me?"
Good news for all of you donut-mongers out there. The semi-newly opened neighboring culinary educational facility, known only as Sugar Shack Donuts, which has quickly monopolized the morning pastry industry, is expanding its horizons. The donut shop, which opened right as school let out last year, quickly won over students and teachers alike even before its opening, thanks to its specialized donut recipe, laced with special, unexplainably addictive “natural flavors.” The founder and owner of the “Sugar” Shack, Ian razzmatazz Kelley stated that the constant flow of Maggie Walker students though the Sugar Shack on a daily basis has lead him to the conclusion that in addition to Sugar Shack’s rigorous expansion of hours (24/8, 367 days a year), and new mural to be painted soon (local street thugs Rakoon will be painting it sometime between 3 and 4 am this Saturday night), a new branch of the donut mecca will open right here in Maggie Walker.
“The location was an easy decision to make,” said employee Allie “two face” Harvey, a senior at Maggie Walker. “When I heard Ian was looking to expand the reaches of his donut empire, Maggie Walker seemed like a shoe-in. Almost all of our customers are Maggie Walker students sneaking in at lunch, or the security guards that follow them to bring them back to school, after grabbing a few dozen donuts for themselves.” Allie has said that on multiple occasions, Mr. Irvin Charles has come in, asking for the mocha almond special and requesting the strawberry shortcake with sprinkles to be a regular flavor on weekdays.
The move is slated to happen sometime in mid-to-late December, so as to officially start business just as school lets out for winter break, in keeping up with that tradition. The new branch will be located in what was known as the Dragon’s Lair. Unfortunately, since no one in the school knows what that means, there will be a massive holiday marketing campaign to boost awareness of the small cavern, located on the south side of the cafeteria. The name will be changed to “The Donut Lair,” an extremely creative name crafted over countless sleepless nights and innumerable meetings by the heads of the English department, and the logo will be designed by senior Macky Neal, who seems to design everything these days.
New, specialty donuts will be added to the regular circulation of glazed and special donuts, made specifically for Maggie Walker. Flavors such as “Dragon Scales” and “Famous Amos cookies” are two of the decided flavors, with a poll to be conducted soon to decide more unique Maggie Walker flavors. Current contestants are “Constitutional Cake,” “TI-84 with M&Ms,” “Wrestling Room,” “GSMUN Ganache,” “Wilkes’ Revenge,” and “Acrylic Paint,” submitted by Jeff Hall of the Art Department. A suggestion and feedback board will be posted on the wall near the soon-to-be-defunct-its-taken-too-long-goodness-gracious Dragon’s Lair. For students actually interested in buying…. whatever it is you buy there, make your final purchases soon because the warm aroma of donuts will soon fill the school, overpowering even the most sweaty of sportsmen. Unfortunately, since Sugar Shack will still be considered a private business, under the guidelines of the school security it will be considered an off-campus lunch spot, restricted only for eligible seniors on Fridays.
As the first month of Maggie Walker comes to close, the school has been afflicted with a serious illness. No, not sinus infections — something the doctor’s call “Homecoming Fever,” a horrible plague that can only be cured by a night of terrible music, girls crying in the bathroom, and far too many flashlights on the dance floor. Of course, those with Homecoming Fever suffer from various symptoms, the most severe being “askherout-neosis”. Common among teenage boys with far too much time on their hands, those afflicted usually exhibit signs of ridiculously cliché moves and primeval mating rituals. However, “askherout-neosis” appears to have varying effects per grade level, as observed with the following:
We have the freshman class, who don’t really understand that asking over a month in advance is minorly obsessive. Favorable options include asking every person they know until someone says yes, “dating” their date (because who doesn’t meet the love of their life in FIRC), and the classic “But I’m on Cross-Country” move. Their youthful innocence is endearing, but also extremely painful to watch because it brings back memories to your first homecoming, with that horrendously awkward boy who kept trying to slow dance with you while you hid in the bathroom.
The Sophomore class is next. Although they understand that asking early is a social faux pas, they seem to forget that there are more than ten people in the grade. Among the top methods of asking are giving a girl baked goods which will probably be handed out to random strangers so that they can squeeze into the dress
purchased last May, and, my personal favorite, getting a bunch of shirtless boys to tattoo their torsos.
The juniors on the other hand, have grasped the concept of waiting to ask, but they do carry a significant advantage for one reason: they’ve all decided to ask sophomores. Ladies and gentlemen, that is the key to getting a date. Date down. Nothing is cooler than going with someone older than you.
And let’s be honest, if you are a single senior genuinely excited for homecoming, you should take a step back and evaluate your life.
Here are some tips:
1. Ask publicly. With like a sign on your chest. Make it a morning announcement. Get a club sponsor for askherout-neosis sufferers and get that announcement out there. This will shame your askee into saying yes.
2. Don’t ask too early or too late. The window for proper asking lasts from tonight at sundown until Saturday at dawn. Anythign outside of that and you can’t expect anyone to say yes.
3. Utilize shirtless boys. She’ll be too busy staring at your best friend’s abs to say no. You know, the one who runs in circles a lot and has a bottle of tanning oil in his locker. That one.
4. Ask down. If an underclassmen says no to you, you may need to make a major lifestyle change.
5. Never ask in person. Your soical anxiety will get in the way. A Facebook message will do.
This past Monday, our school, which Mr. Ulmscheider so accurately sums up as “a bunch of partisans,” became witness to its second “official” “alternative” school “news” “source.” I’m talking, of course, about the Bandersnatch. If you’ve still got last Monday’s issue crushed into a corner of your backpack (maybe you should clean that out more often than that one time around exams when you’re trying to feel productive), take it out. Read some of those articles, my friend, and absorb the wit and spectacle.
Here at Maggie Walker, the competition for the top journalistic spot has never been hotter. We wouldn’t be surprised if, two weeks from now, you guys are fighting over our next issue. We already know that the lines go out the door of the bluestone lobby when the Jabberwock comes out. So how are you going to deal with a third newspaper to read when you already have to balance your homework, chess club, Young Post-Modernists, Musical Dramaturgs Anonymous, club badminton on the weekends, and your summer thesis from that fellowship you got as a sophomore at UCLA? I know it’s going to be hard to manage. But you can do it. Trust me. It’s worth it.
We all know that the highlight of any school year are those times when those really opinionated articles come out in the Jabberwock written by that guy who’s going to graduate in three months so who cares what thoughts he’s been hiding since they occurred to him in the back seat of his FIRC speech class. So why not have those best times of the year every two weeks? I’m certainly in favor of ripping friendships to shreds over a few choice words next to that one picture you found of yourself wearing a suit. Good plan, man. We definitely want to hear your scholarly opinion on that one topic you’ve discussed enough in global studies to have a vague sense of what’s going on. Oh, and you read that thing in the New York Times. You’re practically an expert. Harvard can just give you your degree now.
Libra: That claw-foot bathtub you’ve been waiting for will finally arrive at your home, promptly, at 4:04 this Sunday morning, so be on the lookout, as its appearance may involve falling from the sky.
Scorpio: Today is the day to release your inner Beyonce. Nothing further.
Sagittarius: If you find a penny on the ground today, you will have good luck for the rest of the day. If you find a pine cone on the ground, you may sit on a hedgehog. If you find an acorn, you’ll probably turn into a squirrel and lose a piece of your tail.
Capricorn: Today would be the day to go to Sugar Shack. But if you’re 99.999% of the school, you were probably already going to do that.
Aquarius: Count how many times you say you hate people today. Ponder it. Monday, try to say it more.
Pisces: As you will probably be kicking off a grand business venture today, it might be time to choose that catchy slogan. Some suggestions are as follows: come up with your own slogan, you helpless sack of potatoes.
Aries: TODAY WOULD BE A GOOD DAY TO WRITE ALL OF YOUR IMPORTANT PAPERS IN ALL CAPS WITH LOTS OF PUNCTUATION!!!!!????><>ll????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Taurus: Try to stay grounded today. When you hear about the upcoming One Direction concert, you must stay calm and pretend you don’t like the happy teeny-bopper boy band.
Gemini: Buy me skittles.
Cancer: If you go to fall fest, sit on the corner, watch people, and hiss as they walk by. This will help you make friends.
Leo: Partner up with Scorpio and release your inner Jay-Z.
Virgo: Smile at every person you see today and watch them look back at you with disdain. What a confidence booster!
Hormones are bounding in the freshman class this year as the homecoming ritual begins. Students of the Class of ‘17 have already shown prowess in this annual contest of brain and brawn, asking their peers to the dance with unexpected speed and skill. This impatient approach has had mixed reviews with the freshman females. When we spoke with Rhianna Buscaglia she informed us that “the hype was too high, like, who even goes to homecoming, amirite?” and “all those guys asking like a month early are tooootal SCRUBS.” (After an extensive search on Urban Dictionary we found that she was not, in fact, referring to either the clothes worn by those in the medical field or the “popular” television show starring Zach Braff.)
We have even heard word of two young froshman battling it out out right in front of Mr. Charles’ office for the heart of a classmate. The two boys (whose names we have been asked to not reveal) waited for hours on end, one equipped with a dozen SS donuts, the word “Homecoming?” written across the top in the youth’s own scrawl, the other armed with a lone field hockey ball, again, with the that fateful question written on it. The two asked at the same time, and when their intended date could not chose, the suitors flipped a coin.
Oh, and people everywhere, just a note here from me to you. Ask your date if they would like a corsage before you buy it. Because some of them are bound to say “yes of course that would be sweet/cute/traditional/etc.” but also a lot are gonna say “no, thank you, but that would be hella awkward to have to deal with.”
In light of the recent changes made to the age-old traditions of Fall Festival, there has been great dispute over these issues among both students and faculty. This week, administrators and pupils alike shared their views on the matter, and Dr. McGee was the first to be interviewed on the heated subject.
“The opportunity to have Nutzy the Flying Squirrel at Fall Festival is an absolute honor,” he said. “We have had some prestigious visitors to our school, but this one tops them all. However – and don’t tell anybody this – it’s actually going to be me in the costume. I think we all know how great I look dressed up in animal costumes, so I thought I would take this opportunity to bless the students with another personal appearance in costume.”
The conversation then turned to one of the most hotly debated topics: the move from cash to tickets
as a medium of exchange. Although the official line has been that the switch to tickets is a matter of efficiency, McGee confided that it’s actually a matter of utmost importance and a legitimate concern to all: security.
“We simply don’t want anyone who’s not supposed to be at Fall Festival wandering into the festivities. We’ll also be erecting a temporary electric fence around the school, to keep out any visitors who might not be deterred by the use of tickets. And Irvin Charles and his team will also be armed with assault rifles, just in case something…something…just in case, you know?”
When asked about all of these “updates” to the event, administrator Phil Tharp gave a short spiel on how the changes were in the best interest of the students and faculty…but behind Tharp’s eyes, there was a look of desperation. “Help me,” it said. “I’ve become an old man. My time has passed. Don’t let this be my legacy. Don’t let the memory of me be ruined by my coworkers.”
Just as McGee and Tharp had their own opinions on the issue, the various members of the student body had widely different views on these changes to Fall Festival. Hugo Stack (’17), when questioned for his opinion on the matter, gazed upward with the innocent blue eyes of a fawn and said, “I’m sure that these changes are necessary and good…the administration wouldn’t just change things without doing it in the interest of the students…. Would they?”
Noma Illmensee (’14), a respected veteran of three Fall Festivals, took quite a different stand than Stack on the matter. “Back in my day….” he said. “Back in my day, we used to use cowrie shells and leather hides to pay for all that crazy stuff at Fall Festival.” (Here, he stopped to carefully adjust one of the many war medals on his denim vest and to chew thoughtfully on the toothpick in his mouth.) “What with all these new-fangled changes, ain’t nobody gonna appreciate the value of what they’re buyin’…. And old timers like me, we still got a few leather hides hanging up at home…ready to be spent, but there ain’t nowhere we can spend ’em now!”
Quite precisely between the opinions of these two students was Pattie Green (’15). Her response to the changes to Fall Festival was rather subdued: with half-closed eyes, Green said slowly, “Honestly…. Honestly I could not give less of a damn.”
Regardless of their opinions on the updates to Fall Festival, students can probably expect even more of them next year; McGee hinted that he would add to this year’s “Youth Zone” a “Senior Zone,” with representatives from AARP to answer any questions from the numerous senior citizens who turn up at the event each year. “What I really want to do is make this school the best it can be,” he said, “and, really, without visits from Nutzy and AARP reps, what does Maggie Walker’s Fall Festival have to make it unique? Nothing. Unless you count the electric fence.”
After the passing of our fearless leader, BTW, we in the back corners of every single one of your classrooms, laughing at our own jokes and scribbling everything you have ever said, are saying, and will say in our notebooks, decided that we needed to come out of mourning and bring you all the news you deserve. Like Batman. Totally like Batman.
Our writers working in our secret offices under the tables in the cafeteria have only just come out of mourning. Katie Carney, who has been observing the bereavement process, commented that, “it seemed like the spirit of the newspaper had gone.” Well-informed and highly insightful freshman Katie Rogers added that she was instantly able to tell that something was missing from our school these past four weeks.
So, to stop your worrying, and to give you some pretty high quality paper the next time you need to blow your nose, we’re shouldering our grief and finally moving forward. Reeling from critical losses to the widespread epidemic known simply as “college,” our staff have been doing all they can to revive our camaraderie and spirit of adventure. This has involved, mainly, weeks of break-neck pop culture references competitions after school in the black box, carefully supervised by Mr. Charles, write-all-night marathons at Cary Town’s used book store Chop Suey, and R(hythm) A(nd) P(oetry) Slams hosted by Ms. Surat.
So for all of you thinking “without [name redacted for privacy], what’s the point,” we say, in fact, for your information, also, we might add, coincidentally, you might want to know, and other synonyms, we got this.