A Final Word From Your Editors

The newspaper editors would like to thank all of our readers and participants this past semester. This year we were able revolutionize our consistency in posting articles as well as cover a much wider variety of topics. We had articles about reviews, satire, world news, music, along with political and moral issues. Words cannot express our appreciation to our staff with their eagerness to cover relevant issues. This, along with our readers constantly supplying positive feedback and taking part in our polls made the Village School Newspaper more interactive than it ever has been in the past. We hope you all enjoyed our content as much as we did providing it.

Once again, thank you everyone for an amazing year.

Don’t Press that Button!

imagesHave you ever stopped to notice the button that you can push before you cross the street? Nearly everyone at one point or another has attempted to press these buttons to cross the street, and most likely have been frustrated. Here’s where the frustration comes from:

In the book, The Works, by Kate Ascher, which was published in 2005, Ascher states that more than ¾ of NYC’s sidewalk buttons are reported as not working. The buttons were originally intended to speed things up. But, as more and more people flooded into the city that never sleeps, there was more and more traffic. This makes the buttons inefficient. But now, the buttons serve no purpose and actually slow things down because people tend to get frustrated. This can cause jaywalking, which causes accidents. Accidents slow things down. The reason that the city just doesn’t remove them is because it would cost taxpayers a fortune to do so. 

What will you do when you see a crosswalk button? Will you press it? Or will you ignore it? 

A Brief Peek Into the Story of Vince Staples

To perfectly picture and encapsulate the message of the man named Vince Staples is a task that can easily be perceived as overwhelming. 22 years breathing, his demeanor commands respect due to his ability to articulate his intuition creatively.

Vince was born on July 2, 1993 in Long Beach, California. Vince has often voiced his love for his hometown and depicts it as the laid back ghetto, being as it is not as wild as Compton but still maintains the qualifications of the hood. This being said, Vince has made an active effort to make sure the culture of violence and drugs is not glorified, as artists like Schoolboy Q and Kendrick Lamar do similarly.30bedd30

Vince had never imagined himself to be an artist of any sorts in the past. As a child, his only concern was enjoying his environment. He became a crip affiliate and eventually dropped out of high school. In his earlier years, Vince describes his lifestyle as enjoyable, as it provided a sense of community and it was standard for the resident colored men of Long Beach. It wasn’t until the summer of 2006 that Vince saw the lifestyle rear up its ugly head. As friends began to pass away and the violence became more commonplace, Staples saw the culture as it really was. However, he did not let the realization of such harsh reality curb his loyalty. To this day, Vince voices his allegiance to the set but also makes a point of stating that the lifestyle is not one to desire.

As time began pass, Vince had no idea as to what he should do with himself. He found he had no specific ambitions and as a result began to experiment with different hobbies. A friend that would later become his manager suggested rap, and after realizing his natural affinity for the craft and a constant urging by fans, Vince took the ball and ran with it.hypebeast-tv-vince-staples-in-disneyland-000

Due to manager’s reputation in the hip-hop world, it was not difficult for Vince to find fellow artists to work with. He started out with features on tracks with Odd Future and eventually spread his name throughout the world of rap, working with Artists like Common, Future, and Mac Miller along with producers such as No ID.

Vince uses the platform he has as a rapper to tell stories about his experiences as well as speak through his own perspective. He released his debut album Summertime ‘06 to critical acclaim on June 30 of 2015.

Vince Staples’ artistry has only started to blossom. His unique and mature view of his surroundings will continue to propel him to greater heights.

How to Survive High School as a Hot Mess

High school is hard enough as it for most students: Homework, stress, SAT, more stress, making friends, did I mention stress? And these examples are only a portion of the troubles students face. Now, take that student and add an expert level of procrastination, very believable excuses, a severe case of forgetfulness, little to no sleep, poor hand-eye coordination, overcompensation, the occasional mental breakdown, word vomit, a coffee addiction, a wardrobe that consists of 90% sweatpants/pajama pants, and a messy bun or hat to cover up theHot mess fact that they woke up 5 minutes before the bus.

If you are reading this and can relate to at least 4 of the 10 things listed, congratulations, you’re a hot mess. Now don’t freak out, while it may not be curable, it isn’t a death sentence. You can live your life and to make things easier for you, I’m going to give you a few pointers on how to survive high school as a hot mess.

Tip #1: Picking out your outfit.

  • Yes I know, the majority of your wardrobe is sweatpants, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t stressful to pick an outfit. You may be a mess and really lazy, but you aren’t a slob, so at least have an outfit that matches. That leads us to my first piece of advice: always wear a black shirt. Black matches with almost everything and it’s easy to throw on while you’re simultaneously brushing your teeth, brushing your hair, eating breakfast and running to catch your bus.

Tip #2: Sleeping Habits and Coffee Addictions.

  • If you’re like me, you spend more time on Netflix and YouTube than you spend starbucks-confessionalsleeping. (Who needs sleep when you can binge watch Grey’s Anatomy?) Sleeping at night is for the weak. After all, that’s why we have coffee. Coffee is what gives a hot mess life; it makes it so we can function slightly more like a human instead of a zombie. If you’re reading this and coffee isn’t your best friend, I suggest you make a few adjustments to that friend group. On the other hand, if you’re reading this and you have a Starbucks gold card, I can bet you that I’ve spent more money there in the last month than you did in the last year.

 

Tip #3: Procrastination and Excuses.

  • *Disclaimer: I would’ve spent more time writing this tip, but I completely forgot. I had a really important thing (Netflix) to do last night, and I was running around all morning (woke up five minutes ago), and didn’t have time to do it. 😉 

Tip #4: Forgetfulness.

  • Everyone forgets things every once in a while, hot messes are just more prone to catch a case of forgetfulness. Here is some stuff I do in the morning to remember what I need to do: 1) If you need to remember something put it on top of something you never leave the house without. That way, when you run around your house looking for it, you’ll also find your visual to- do list for the day. 2) Set as many alarms as possible. It’ll annoy you to the point that you want to throw your phone at the wall, but at least you’ll remember what you need. This may vary considering I still sleep through 10 of my 15 alarms in the morning but hey, it may work for you. 3) I forgot this step, but that means it probably wasn’t important.

Tip #5: Breakdowns.

  • As much as we don’t want to experience breakdowns, it’s bound to inevitably happen to you more than you might want to admit. Some of the time you can’t help them and other times they are preventable or not necessary. So calm down, yes it’s okay to have them every so often but if you’re going to freak out over small things it’s going to help no one. Distract yourself from the problem: Talk to someone, read a book, binge Netflix, go for a run, and if all else fails go home and stuff your face with chocolate because chocolate fixes everything.

Tip #6: Be yourself!

  • Last but not least, be yourself not what others want you to be! Don’t let labels define who you are, so what you’re a hot mess? In the end it’s just a word, if-im-going-to-be-a-mess-i-might-as-well-be-a-hot-mess-quote-1you are who you want to be and should embrace it. If someone is going to judge you for the way you look and act, they don’t deserve your time or stress. Being a hot mess isn’t a bad thing, it’s just another thing that makes you who you are. So go ahead, rock those sweatpants, throw your hair up in that messy bun, binge on netflix, have that occasional meltdown, be voted most likely to have a child born addicted to starbuck in your yearbook (….okay that last one may only apply to me but still it’s possible for you too!), and most importantly be yourself!

 

If you follow these six tips, you’re all set to survive high school. Oh and one last thing, congratulations, you’re a hot mess!

Uber Joins The Race For Driverless Cars!

As of May 20th, Uber has joined the race in utilizing driverless cars in their business. While driverless cars have already been invented, it is still a very new thing and is rarely seen. Now, Uber is going to be one of the first to actually test these driverless cars. Testing will occur on the streets of Pittsburgh, PA. The car, which is a hybrid Ford Fusion, will be collecting mapping data and all while testing its self driving capabilities. Also, self driving cars have the potential to simageave millions of lives. 1.3 million people die every year in car accidents — 94% of those accidents involve human error. “From the first steel mills to the laboratories at Pitt and Carnegie Mellon, Pittsburgh has a long history of innovation. Now we’re taking another step forward, this time as home to Uber’s Advanced Technologies Center, where some of the world’s leading innovators are helping to shape the future of transportation. We’re excited that Uber has chosen the Steel City as they explore new technologies that can improve people’s lives — through increased road safety, less congestion, and more efficient and smarter cities.” -William Peduto, Mayor of Pittsburgh

Muhammad Ali is Dead

 

Muhammad Ali with the Beatles.

Muhammad Ali with the Beatles.

Muhammad Ali, a legendary boxer who retired in 1981, died of septic shock on Friday, June 3rd, at the age of 74. Muhammad Ali was a three time world champion heavyweight, and only lost 5 of the 61 fights he participated in during his career. Tragedy struck shortly after his retirement when, in 1984, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s syndrome. It is believed that he developed the syndrome, in part, due to head trauma sustained during boxing. Despite this setback, he remained active in the public eye for years after. He endorsed Ronald Reagan in 1984, published an oral history of his life, traveled to Iraq during the Gulf War to negotiate with Saddam Hussein, and lit the flame at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. These notable appearances gradually diminished over time, and halted entirely when he began to confront serious health problems in 2013.

Muhammad Ali was born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr., on January 17th, 1942. He began boxing at 12 years old, and 10 years later he became world heavyweight champion after an upset victory over Sonny Liston. He quickly gained a reputation for his endearing bravado and impressive results. In the ring, he was notable for having great reflexes and mobility, especially in comparison to other heavyweights. He constantly moved about, circling his opponent, jabbing, and dancing about to avoid punches; thus it is apropos that his most famous catchphrase would be “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee”. After defeating Sonny Liston he converted to Islam under the guidance of Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the same organization that Malcolm X belonged to before his assassination, who gave him the name for which he is now famous. This, along with his refusal to be drafted into the Vietnam war, antagonized the white political establishment. He became a counterculture icon in the process, but he was arrested and stripped of his boxing titles. Although he appealed successfully in 1971, he had lost 4 peak years of his athletic career. He regained his title in what was certainly the most dramatic, and probably the most famous, boxing match in history dubbed “The Rumble in the Jungle”.
In addition to his impressive professional achievements, he also maintained an active family life. He was married four times and had 9 children, two sons and seven daughters. One of his surviving daughters is now a retired professional boxer herself. Muhammad Ali was a great man and we should all mourn his death.

Album Review: “The Black”, by Asking Alexandria

 

Metalcore band Asking Alexandria recently released their highly anticipated fourth full-length album, The Black. It’s their first album with new vocalist Denis Shaforostov (AKA, Denis Stoff), who replaced Danny Worsnop when Worsnop departed in January 2015. On May 26, 2015, Stoff was officially announced as the lead vocalist.

maxresdefault-1

When asked if he had considered anyone else for the role, lead guitarist Ben Bruce stated “it has to be Denis.”  He then went on topraise Stoff’s vocal range, which is much better than Worsnop’s. Stoff also had been a fan of the band and so was familiar with the earlier material. However, when Stoff himself was asked about how he would distinguish himself from Worsnop, he said that he wouldn’t make any comparisons, since they are two completely different people.

Asking Alexandria opens up their album with a pure banger, “Let it Sleep”. The song kicks off with some distorted guitars and when the whole song kicks in, it pummels its listeners with fast guitars, double kick drums, and screamed vocals. Some other highlights of this album are the heavy songs, which is what the band is mainly known for. Some of those songs are ‘The Lost Souls”, “Undivided”, and really cool and unique songs like, “The Black.”

The band also recorded some major throwback songs, which happen to be my personal favorites, such as “Circled By The Wolves” and “Just A Slave To Rock ‘n Roll.” While a great album in all, there two “eh” moments. Some of the lyrics were kind of cheesy and overdone. Although the songs show off Stoff’s vocal range (which is immense and really beautiful), the song “Send Me Home” was just so over done. It comes off as an attempt at an anthem or a radio-friendly song, but doesn’t quite work. They definitely pulled off the other softer songs like, “Here I Am”, and “We’ll Be OK.” Overall, this album is a definite 9.5/10.

Click below for links to the album stream, the band’s website, and their label’s site and channel:
Asking Alexandria website
Asking Alexandria official twitter
Asking Alexandria Facebook page
Spotify
Sumerian Records
Sumerian Records You Tube channel

How to Art: Art School

Art is a hard field of work to make it big in, so if you have aspirations to become the next Leonardo da Vinci, you’re chances are extremely miniscule. On the other hand, you can always refine your skills in order to pursue that field.

Think about things. Is this something you can do and want to do. You know?

That being said, there are many professions having to do with art. Museum guide, museum curator, museum art preservation, graphic designer, graphic artist, architect, illustrator, fashion designer, gastronomist, art therapy, advertisement, chef, anime artist, manga artists, composer, singer, dancer, actor, writer, playwright, director, interior designer, and many many more.

Whether you’re considering going to art school or not, have a portfolio. At some point you might be asked to show some work and having it ready may save some otherwise missed opportunities. Also, before deciding to attend art school, speak to people who have already been through art school and people with experience if possible. (May or may not be beneficial. I just looked up this stuff, man…..)

Attend art college fairs, apply to art college programs, but during this time, continue to make art. Its easy to loose site of thing, but keeping the passion for art alive can help you remain grounded (again, I just searched for this stuff online….)

agnes-artsci-11-1

And hopefully you’ll be able to make a living.. Just do you or whatever..

Endangerment

There are countless amounts of animals that will make your heart melt: puppies, kittens, the list goes on and on. What is your favorite animal? What if I told you that there is a 30-50% of all species are heading towards extinction by this mid century. According to research conducted by conservation scientist, David Wilcove estimates that there are 14,000 to 35,000 endangered species in the United States. Below are my favorite beauties of this world that are sadly decreasing in population as we speak.

Elephants (African and Asian)

These majestic creatures are the largest mammals on Earth. They are indigenous to Sub-Saharan Africa and SouthEast Asia. As many as 100,000 African elephants were reportedly killed between 2010 and 2012. Threats that are imposed upon the elephant population include poaching and illegal trade of ivory tusks. These beautiful creatures are slowly losing their habitats, because of their size they are forced to places where they can not survive. In Thailand, elephant rides are a popular tourist attraction. In reality these rides “break” elephants both physically and emotionally. Their spines are not made to carry the weight of humans which paralyses them over time. Emotionally? They are abused and driven to insanity by isolation.

Polar Bears

polar-bears_1425387c

Polar bears are marine mammals indigenous to the Arctic. Their population is rapidly decreasing ultimately because of the environment. This causes a shift in the ecosystem. Polar ice caps melting leaving many of the bears swimming for their lives in search of other caps. Though these amazing creatures can swim a great distance (30 miles) ice caps are becoming harder to find which results in polar bears drowning in the sea. Another reason for their endangerment is the lack of food. Polar bears spend 50% of their lives searching for food, but less than 2% of their hunts are successful.

What you can do to help

  • Do not buy ivory! New ivory is strictly banned, but antique ivory can be legally available for purchase
  • Adopt an elephant/polar bear
  • Go green
  • Conserve water