Wednesday September 19th, 2018
Knightwatch

Midget Boys and Junior Girls Go for Gold at OFSAA

Issue 2 - Sports
By: Julia Cawthorn

Running through trees and wet terrain in all types of weather pretty much sums up the definition of cross-country running. This season was conducted by coaches, Mr. White and Ms. Anderson, who lead the team to victory with medals, ribbons and great all-around participation. This year at the city championships, our team represented the school by enduring the rain and wind like professionals. As a result; our midget boys team, (placing 2nd) Olivia Gaudet and Paige Roszak (3rd & 6th) from our junior girls team, all qualified to the OFSAA championships which were held in Sudbury on November 2nd. Thousands of high school students from all over the province competed in various distances starting at 3km and going as far as 7km. From their slippery hills to mucky trails, the competitors knew that it was going to be a technically difficult race.

Being a three-time OFSAA qualifier, twice for cross-country, Olivia Gaudet was able to have a quick chat about her experience that weekend. She explained that this year has brought a whole new level of "coolness" starting off with that fact that she and her teammates ran at one of the biggest races in North America. The main sponsor for the event, Nike, gave the area a great vibe by having a tent set up with fun activities and pump-up music; for that overall buzz. Her highlights of the trip included; running against some of the top runners her age, bonding with her fellow knights and making new friends. Seeing as how Sudbury holds one of the most challenging courses OFSAA has ever had, it definitely held on to its reputation. Hills were given names that respectively fit their meanings and most of the courses was very muddy.

"The Beast, the Wall and the Devil's Elbow were definitely some hills I did not want to climb! It was also very cold out, but lot's of fun," Olivia said while reminiscing the good times.

From motivational speakers, to wearing an OFSAA sweater with pride, you could probably say that our competitors had a great time. Plus, if you want to achieve the goal of qualifying to OFSAA like Olivia did, she says her best piece of advice would be;

"Cross-country may seem like physical fitness is most required, but it also involves a great part of mental strength as well. If you're not in the right mindset, it's hard to 'break barriers.' Though putting those thoughts aside, this is an extraordinary individual sport that takes a great deal of teamwork as well."

Once again, congrats those who qualified and to everyone that participated whether it was during mornings, lunch or after school. Go Knights!

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The Off-Season Guide to Paris

Issue 2 - Travel
By: Anna Grunsky

Let’s face it: vacations often feel like more effort than they’re worth. You pay loads of tax on your plane ticket, and spend the first two days jetlagged. Then your remaining time is taken up as you elbow your way through tourist-packed streets so that you can pay too much money at an attraction that really wasn’t worth all the bruises and blisters it took you to get there.

Paris is one of such places. Going in the summer certainly has its perks. The gardens of Versailles are in full bloom, there’s gorgeous weather, and no shops will have a “closed for the season” sign. On the other hand, it’ll takes you several hours to actually get through the line at Versailles, and you may hear more English than French in the city.

Luckily, there is an escape: off-season.

Going in off-season means that a lot of merchandise will be on sale. It also means that Paris will be way less crowded. Of course, there will still be lines for everything. Even in March the Mona Lisa has a constant crowd of about a hundred and fifty people packing into the space in front of her. But visit during the summer and you’ll be lucky to catch a glimpse of the famous portrait. Skipping prime tourist time means hotels will be easier to find, and Parisians will probably be a little more forgiving when you ask them for directions. And you will ask them for directions. Unlike in Ottawa, intersections in Europe can have up to seven streets converging.

If you choose to avoid the summer rush, be prepared for some interesting weather. Depending on your timing, it may snow or rain. Some attractions will be closed, or open only at certain times. That’s okay. You just have to be ready to deal with some setbacks. It’s better than the summer crowds.

Planning what to do in Paris can be hard, because there’s just so much of it. Some options are easy to eliminate, and some are not worth the money. Of course there are places like L’Arc de Triomphe and the Louvre that are must-sees, and shouldn’t take too long if you plan carefully. After all, you can only look at Renaissance paintings for so long before they all blend into one nude, mythological scene. But there are others that you should also be checking out.

The Eiffel Tower

Classic, but whatever you do, do not go up it. One ticket costs well over twenty dollars, and when you get to the top you can see everything in Paris, except the one landmark you’ll be able to recognize, since you’re standing on it. Just take some nice pictures from ground level and be on your way.

Notre-Dame

You only need to see one gothic church to have seen them all, and Notre-Dame is the one to see with its high ceiling and stained glass. Don’t be fooled by the dauntingly huge line of people outside the doors: It moves very quickly, so you probably won’t have to wait longer than fifteen minutes. Also, it’s free!

Monmartre

Monmartre is the filming location of the movie Amélie, and a really cool area to visit. The roads are cobblestone and built on steep angles, and it’s full of pastry shops, street artists, and lots of stairs. In nice weather, the place is packed. In the snow, it’s beautiful, although many shops will be closed. While Monmartre is a friendly place, beware of pickpockets, and don’t venture too far out of the shopping zone; there’s a not-so-nice neighbourhood nearby.

The Catacombs

Here’s a nice reminder of how old Paris is. The catacombs beneath Paris contain six million skeletons, stacked along the walls. It’s so huge that only a small part is open to the public. Walking past those long dead is a strange, creepy experience, but well worth the twenty minutes you’ll spend climbing the stairs down to the tunnels and back up.

Versailles

Located about twenty minutes outside of Paris, Versailles is the royal palace that was used through the 1700s. It’s elaborate, stunning, and a little gaudy. The gardens are cool too, although they won’t be in bloom if you’re trying avoiding the summer.

The Conciergerie

For those who really like the French Revolution, or else really like Harry Potter. This medieval castle stands on the banks of the river Seine, and holds over a thousand years of history. Parts of the interior have been converted into a museum for the French Revolution, filled with letters, portraits, and a list of all 3000 executed via the guillotine during the Terror. Or, you could simply run through the halls pretending you’re at Hogwarts.

The images that come to mind at the name “Paris” are cute little cafes and majestic arches. But in reality, Paris is a city, and every city has its ups and downs. Watching out for thieves and scams is essential. But the place is also filled with history, style, and excitement, so enjoy the unique experience.

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Shark finning

Issue 2 - Environment
By: Sarah Tourangeau

The ocean is a mysterious, yet fragile, ecosystem. This system covers 71% of the earth’s surface, contains 97% of the world’s water and yet 95% of the ocean has not been explored. Little is known about the secrets of the oceans and even less is known about it’s top predator, the shark. Sharks have been around for 420 million years and survived 5 major periods of extinction. Yet the shark today is facing one of it’s biggest challenges yet: surviving human disruption of the oceans.

Shark finning is a practice that is rapidly leading to the destruction of the oceans’ ecosystem. This practice is the slaying of sharks, however, little is being done to stop it. This can be attributed to the public’s perception of the shark. Often portrayed as a bloodthirsty killer in Hollywood movies, the shark has earned a misleading and extremely incorrect reputation. However, few people will stand up for the shark. There are few “Save the Sharks” campaigns. But people would rather protect hippos and elephants, “cute” animals. In reality, 2,900 people are killed by hippos and 500 are killed by elephants annually. Sharks kill 5 a year. An amazingly small number considering humans willingly entering their hunting grounds. A person wouldn’t run beside a pride of lions, but that is what humans do with sharks every day.

However, the stakes are high. The global shark fin trade has an estimated value of 540 million to 1.2 billion dollars, second only to the global illegal drug trade. Fins can be sold for up to $400 per kilogram, with trophy fins, such as those from the whale and basking shark can retail from $10,000 - $20,000. To catch these prizes, fisherman often use long-line fishing, a completely wasteful practice. Several miles of baited hooks are dropped into the ocean. This practice is one of the largest source of bycatch, which is catching unwanted species. This bycatch, composed heavily of less cash-valuable fish, often die due to starvation or suffocation if they get ensnared in the lines. These fish are killed for no reason. This may seem quite dire, but many may wonder, what does it have to do with me?

Everything on the world depends on something. Humans often believe themselves a superior being, relying on no other. All life on earth is a jumble of intertwining cycles. So little is known about the oceans, yet populations dump trash and other toxic pollutants into a mystery, hoping everything will turn out okay. Around 73 million sharks are killed annually. Sharks take 25 years to reach sexual maturity and produce very few young. Sharks are being killed at a rate that is completely unsustainable; eventually the sharks will die out. However, humans are more dependant on sharks that most think. The oceans produce between 50 and 85 percent of the oxygen we breathe, produced by tiny phytoplankton. The shark is an apex predator, meaning it controls the populations below it. The ocean is a delicate ecosystem; the loss of a top predator would be absolutely detrimental to life on earth. If the shark was to be rendered extinct, the populations of the lower levels of the ocean hierarchy would increase, due to a loss in population regulation. If these lower level species flourished, more phytoplankton would be consumed as sustenance. This in turn means that less phytoplankton would be available to produce the oxygen we breathe, potentially leaving us in a 50 to 85 percent oxygen deficit. As a student there are many things that can be done to help. Firstly, if offered, say no to shark fin soup. As well, there are many organizations such as Sea Shepherd, Humane Society International and Wild Aid that are working tirelessly to put an end to this practice. For more information about how you can get involved, visit: http://www.stopsharkfinning.net

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Everyday Existential

Issue 2 - Poetry
By: Grace Noel
Image from Google Images

I swing open the door

and stare at the soft-striped-stuffed nook

Silky and fluid, vibrantly splashed

Beautifully constructed and flattering

My fingers sift through garments

Expertly whipping the plastic hangers along the rack

I glance to my right as the digital display betrays me

fading one minute away into silvery nonexistence

Focus.

I pull out a lace blouse

Too cold-I throw it on the bed

A flouncy scarf

Bad hair day-too puffy-I throw it on the bed

A blooming skirt

Big breakfast-too full-too tight-I throw it on the bed

A shoulder slips off its hanger and collapses on the floor

taking two belts with it

I slap a defenseless camisole

strangle an elegant dress

crush my favourite cardigan

Toss, pitch, and reject

in distracted confusion

I drape a shimmering charm around my neck

3 hangers grabbed at once

Collar, crew, scoop-the frame

I slip on the shirt

Pants. Quickly.

Wore them yesterday, saggy butt, decent enough

Pull them on, peel them off, go for tried and true

Tripping over the tourniquet sliding over my ankles

The arm cleared sock drawer tumbles into a heap on the hardwood

Ugly! Dirty! Another pair. Where is the match?

There.

Hit and miss confidence

Five minutes too slow.

Rapidly preening

I slide to the mirror: front, side, glance behind

And rush out of the textile tumult

into a criticizing world.

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Semi Final Woes

By: Joe Adams
Issue 2 - Sports

It has been a rough couple weeks in terms of sports at Nepean High School. A 2-0 defeat at the feet of Mother Teresa (The Titans) ended the senior boys' soccer team's hopes of competing at OFSAA. The semi-final game was a hard fought battle between two teams who had previously drew 2-2 in the regular season. As Mother Teresa went up a goal mid-way through the first half, the Nepean team started to feel the pressure. The Titans defense held strong as shots from Jacob Schroeter and Jack MacDonald whistled wide. The second half was a gridlock and a defensive battle. Nepean insisted on playing the long ball up the middle of the field. A strong heading Titans' back four defended this with extreme caution to preserve the 1-0 lead Mother Teresa held. As Nepean pressed forward, Mother Teresa came back and a goal was slipped past the keeper on a well organized counter-attack. Nepean sent the entire team forward to try to equalize, but were unable to produce anything before the final whistle went.

The following week, Nepean took on Ashbury College (The Colts) in the semi finals of senior girls' basketball. With each team coming off big wins in the quarter finals, the game was bound to be exciting. The rivalry matchup did not disappoint and led to a decent turnout in the stands. Students from Nepean battled with those from Ashbury in the stands and that dynamic was mirrored on the court. Nepean went down early and were never quite able to recover. The Knights outplayed the Colts throughout the first half, but were unable to finish at the hoop. As the second half wore on, the Ashbury lead kept building. Late in the fourth quarter Nepean was on the verge of defeat, but grade 11 Maddy Harris took the game into her hands. Unfortunately for Nepean, Ashbury's lead was too much and the comeback fell short. The month of October did not agree with Nepean sports, but with a promising Senior Boys Basketball and Varsity Contact Hockey teams, the winter term has potential to produce some silverware.

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The Rise of Lorde: Pure Heroine

Issue 2 - Reviews
By: Alexander Dam

Lorde, a name that has been appearing everywhere these days from people’s lips to music charts around the world.

From SoundCloud to World-bound, Lorde (aka Ella Yelich-O'Connor), a New Zealand-raised teen, introduces her down tempo electro pop sound that differs, yet does not completely strive away, from mainstream pop music.

In my own opinion, Lorde has a Grimes-meets-Lana Del Rey sound that destined her to be the queen of Tumblr and a YouTube sensation in the blink of an eye with her album Pure Heroine. It features Lorde’s deep melodic vocals accompanying down tempo instrumentals. The album is full of catchy instrumentals, heavy-hitting bass kicks, vocal sampling, thin high hats, and ambient synthesizers.

Her first track on the album “Tennis Court” featured a chopped off-beat attitude that introduces a minimal sound to open the album. “400 Lux” includes vivid visualization that play well with the lyrics that surely the listener will enjoy. The title track “Royals” is evident of its position at the top of the charts and countless plays on the radio. Lorde’s harmonic chorus and smooth vocals with lyrics embodying the want of living the lifestyle of a celebrity; it was destined to be a hit. “Ribs” is an understated track with a mix of an eighties vibe with today’s modern pop. “Buzzcut Season” lulls the listener to a smooth relaxed state with the well composed downtempo instrumental. “Team” has an electronic-meets-indie percussion sound accompanied by her beautiful vocals. “Glory and Gore” has many elements used in today’s mainstream music that emphasize its composers’ abilities. “Still Sane” portrays Lorde as her rising self with her smoky vocals. “White Teeth Teens” switches the albums direction with a doo wop-inspired acapella featuring melodic vocals that mixes well with her downtempo style. Her closing track “A World Alone” features ambient vocals and acoustic guitar riffs progressing in tempo whilst including percussion that concludes the album on a high note.

The beginning tracks didn’t adhere to me as easily as the later tracks but it played well in the progression from minimal down tempo to playful pop from track-to-track, yielding a wide range for many listeners to enjoy. Pure Heroine is as addictive and impressive as the supposed play-on-word implies

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How to Pull a Successful All-nighter

Issue 2 - How-to’s
By: Erin Cooper

We’ve all been there; don’t try to deny it. Every teenager has survived the famous late-night crisis that stems from procrastination. Then again, maybe that’s an unfair assumption. There are probably countless teens who are just entering grade nine and who have yet to experience the stress brought on by an all-nighter. Regardless, this student-approved, step-by-step guide will take you through the process of your next inevitable all-nighter.

It’s 4 P.M. and you’ve just arrived home from school. You kick off your shoes, hang up your coat and collapse on the couch in front of the TV. You’re well aware that your English essay is due tomorrow, but your favorite show is on in less than an hour and that’s not enough time to get any real work done. So, here you are, watching an episode of a show you don’t even like (an episode you’re fairly certain you’ve seen before) and you’re ignoring that little voice in the back of your head that’s chiding you for not getting to work. Eventually, you’re filled with a nasty sense of guilt and you almost give in—almost—but your show starts in 14 minutes and you can’t leave now.

One hour and 14 minutes later, you shut off the TV, turn on your computer and open a new Word document. You spend the next hour or two staring at the blank document—not continuously, of course. At some point you type out a sentence, and after staring at it for a while, you delete it. You get up and make yourself a snack because realistically you can’t finish your work if you are malnourished. You open Facebook and scroll until you reach the last post that you remember seeing. You check who’s online, searching for any of your English classmates. You ask them how far they are on their essay and complain about how annoying it is.

Before you know it, it’s dinnertime and you have to clear your stuff off the table. You rush through dinner and get back to work. You proceed to write a few paragraphs and you think you’re on a roll.

You’re wrong.

Now you’re back to staring blankly at your document, not sure how to continue. Then you restore your Internet browser that has your favorite thesaurus website open, and somehow you find yourself on tumblr. That eats up another half-hour of your time and you have to force yourself to close the window and get back to your essay. After writing another paragraph, you play around with the fonts and estimate the least amount of words you would need to write to fill three pages.

Eventually, you reach the point where you’re extremely stressed and unmotivated at the same time. This contrasting combination of emotions will make your brain foggy and your eyelids droop.

Students who are experts at pulling all-nighters will know what comes next: coffee. Desperate for an energy boost, you brew a pot of coffee. As your parents pass through the kitchen and notice what you’re up to, they look at you sadly but with a hint of sympathy, because they know what you’re going through. And more importantly, what is yet to come.

Once you’re sufficiently caffeinated, your thoughts become slightly clearer and you start typing again. Your fingers fly across the keyboard with intensity and purpose. A little too much intensity, it seems. You notice that your hands are trembling slightly, but you shrug it off, figuring it’s just the caffeine making you a little jittery. That coffee was pretty strong.

Later, in a sudden moment of inspiration, you find the perfect way to end your essay; it’s uplifting and philosophical and you just know your teacher will love it. You find yourself grinning to yourself as you write the concluding paragraph. Once you’re finished, you verify your word count and suddenly you worry that you have it wrong. What if the assignment was supposed to be five pages instead of three?

So you fish the rubric sheet out of your bag and scan the instructions. A sigh of relief escapes you when you read that it is, in fact, three pages. It’s only 1:04 A.M., you’re finished your essay and you can still get a few hours of sleep.

Just as you’re about to put the rubric away, a sentence catches your eye. It’s in bold and underlined and as you read it, your heart leaps into your throat. You suppress the urge to scream because your family is asleep.

Annotated Bibliography to be handed in with final copy.

You then come to the unfortunate realization that you aren’t getting any sleep tonight.

* * *

Your alarm clock tugs you out of your unconscious state. It doesn’t jolt you awake like it usually does; it just pulls you back to reality and it doesn’t even feel like you were sleeping. You doubt you slept at all. As you drag yourself out of bed, you’re all too aware of the dry, empty feeling in your stomach and the constricted feeling in your chest. You take a deep breath. On the bright side, you think, I finished my essay.

Then you promise yourself never to do anything like this again.

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Mom's Famous Butter Tarts

They'll make your heart melt... if you don't get a cavity first

Issue 2 - Recipes
By: Jessica Saugnier Porter

Serves: 16

Ingredients:

  • Pie pastry (enough to fill 16 muffin cups, homemade or store bought
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup soft butter
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:

  1. Prepare muffin pans by rolling out pie dough and cutting 4-inch (approx) circles; fit dough circles into muffin cups; set aside in fridge until ready to fill.
  2. In a small bowl, place raisins and cover with hot tap water; let stand on the counter for 30 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, using a wooden spoon, mix together the soft butter, brown sugar, salt and corn syrup; stir well until sugar is dissolved and butter is creamed.
  4. Add egg and vanilla; mix well.
  5. Drain and dry raisins.
  6. Retrieve tart shells and divide raisins equally into all shells; then divide butter mixture into all tarts.
  7. Bake at 400F for 15-20 minutes; filling will be lightly browned but still bubbling.
  8. Canadians fall into two camps about butter tarts and are quite loyal to their favourite type: runny or firm.
  9. I like runny-- the type that dribbles when you bite into one; if you like firm, bake them for the full 20 minutes, even adding another minute or two if you wish.
  10. Let cooked butter tarts cool in pans for 10 minutes after removing from oven; then remove and place on racks until completely cool. Enjoy
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