Month: March 2014

Foster The People Coming Back Better Than Ever

Words: Bushra Lohrasbi

Foster the People is an American indie pop band that has a more unique sound than most. They started off as a band in 2009 and hit up the radio charts in 2011 after their catchy song, “Pumped up Kicks” came out.  After having their hit song on the radio 24/7, it seemed as though they dropped off the face of the planet. Fans were ready for new material, and more music to connect with.

Their latest album, Supermodel, was originally announced to be released in November of 2013. However, according to Columbia Records, a scare of the album being rushed to be released was evident, and was then decided to move back the date to January of 2014.

Well, Columbia Records was right. Supermodel, which was released on January 14, 2014, was definitely worth the wait. The vocals and the heavy drums and guitar in most of their songs on this album are hypnotizing.

The second single on the Supermodel album is “Pseudologia Fantastica.” Undoubtedly, this is my favorite song on the entire upcoming album, and even from their last album. A sense of nostalgia goes through your mind while listening, yet you aren’t sure what it’s from. A heavy drum is carried throughout the entire song, with echoes of lead and background vocals.

The lyrics may not seem relevant when you are listening to the band behind the vocals, but taking one look behind the scenes, you can’t stop thinking about the deep meaning that the band is trying to convey. Foster the People start the song off with a strong and heavy message of all the vanities of the world, and all the promises broken to help these erroneous doings.

Say you in the morning it seems
As I could chop one of us seeking life in
Through words bend the teeth through the wall
I promised I would rid the world of feral animals

The very last verse of the song is powerful and extremely meaningful.

You’ve got to look around a certain field
Come down to roast the flesh of some beginning
You’ve got to get back up and face your demons
Don’t ever be afraid of starting over.

It’s almost like a cry for help for the rest of the song, saying that when all the wrong things go wrong, that one person that you depend on all the time will not be there, and you will be lost.  The one message that I took away was that you need to become your own person, and to never be timid of pursuing what you think is best for you, after facing rejection.

After four long years of waiting, Supermodel did not disappoint. Every song has a unique sound that somehow strings all the pieces together.

Technology’s Impact on the Youth

Words: Madhu Lal

Recently I’ve noticed a spike in the usage of electronics in today’s youth population. As a kid growing up, I was assigned a set amount time each day for TV. Watching TV, for me, was a treat, and playing on the 30 pound piece of metal that was known as the computer, was utter bliss. I saw computer time as a treat, not an event that regularly occurred throughout the day. My life didn’t revolve around electronics, rather my life revolved around playing with friends and family. When living in New York, I fondly remember venturing out into Central Park, climbing the trees and chasing after other kids during a game of tag.

The way the youth today regards social interaction and electronics, I feel, has drastically changed since I was a child, only six years ago. Throughout the years I have noticed an increase of kids, not much older than eight, walking around, eyes glued to their iPhone, texting furiously to their friends. Even seven-year-olds, like my cousin, own androids and iPhones, and have Facebook and Instagram accounts! These kids, even in the presence of their friends or peers, would sit in silence tapping away on their phones, almost completely oblivious to each other’s existence.

It is important for kids to independently try to understand and unearth new information regarding peers, nature, and life. When kids are given phones at a young age, they disconnect from the real world, they don’t see discovery or learning of any importance, this is due to the fact that they can instantly google any information needed. Memorizing and storing information is seen as irksome and impractical and questioning and investigating things is regarded as foolish.

The early years of a child’s life is where they start to develop social skills; they talk, interact, and sometimes even fight with other kids. The interaction between peers is important because this helps children learn how to resolve conflict, interact with others in an acceptable way, and get a better understanding of others’ emotions.

I have witnessed kids doing just the opposite of that, six-year-olds taking “selfies” with makeup caked on their faces, and boys huddled in a corner playing fruit ninja vacuously. These kids are oblivious to events going on in the real world, absentmindedly walking, phone-in-hand.

The introduction of electronics into the lives of the young have contorted what kids see as important life skills, and, in some cases, have resulted in physically and developmental handicaps. Kids who grow up using electronics regularly, are more likely to lack cognitive skills (acquiring and understanding knowledge), they also may lack the ability to properly interact with other members of society, whether it be family or friends.

Phones and computers have no doubt helped better society’s way of life. These types of technology help connect people from around the world, get ideas and information out to the masses, and help make work more organized and efficient. However, the introduction of phones and laptops at a young age can negatively affect the recipient of this technology, by hindering a child’s ability to evolve into a creative important and developmentally sound person.

The Boys’ Lacrosse Team Big Win Against Oakland Mills

Words: Giana Han

Preserving their undefeated status, the Centennial boys’ lacrosse team beat Oakland Mills on Friday, March 28, 11-4.

The Eagles grabbed the lead in the first quarter, and held on to it for the rest of the game.  Seniors Andrew Gavlin and Quinn Western scored the first two goals of the game, and sophomore Michael Moore quickly followed up with one of his own. The first quarter ended with the Eagles up 3-0.

The Eagles started out the second quarter strong, as well. Western checked the ball out of a defender’s stick, did a split dodge, and beat four defenders for a goal, putting the Eagles up 4-0.

Oakland Mills’ number 13 quickly followed up with his own goal, bringing his team within three.  However, Centennial dominated the game, and got off many more shots.  In the middle of the second, the Eagles had 11 chances compared to the Scorpions’ 5 chances.

Western put one more ball in the goal, and Oakland Mills came back with one of their own.  The clock ran down, and Centennial went into halftime up 5-2.

Coming out of the break, Gavlin increased the lead to four with a lay-up shot, making the score 6-2.

Then, Moore stepped back onto the scene with a nice goal, which he followed up with four more goals, for a total of six goals in the game.

“The highlight of the game was every single one of Mike’s goals,” said Western. “They were incredible and impeccable.”

By holding Oakland Mills to just four goals and winning over half of the face offs, Centennial was able to dominate the game with a resounding final score of 11-4.

“We just tried to follow our game plan and dictate the tempo,” stated Gavlin.

The Eagles are now 3-0, having beat Glenelg, Long Reach and Oakland Mills.  Next week they will play in a big game against Howard.

“It feels good to have a solid start,” said Western. “We’re 3-0, undefeated, but we have to keep pushing.”

First Hand Look at Beauty and the Beast

Photos: Martha Hutzell

Words: Amy Myers

There was a crowd at the mirrors where the cast curled their hair, touched their stage makeup and secured their wigs. An echo of lyrics and lines rang through the room.

“Places,” technical crew called. In a hum of excitement and jitters, we entered the stage.

It was the first musical that I had been on stage instead of watching from the crowd. After my nerve-racking audition and call back, I did not even expect to be invited to join the show, but when I saw my name on the cast list, I was thankful to be a part of the chorus, and the musical in general.

We worked tirelessly after school each rehearsal, and even when the snow took away valuable school days to our production, we created our own rehearsal. Between breaks and times when I was not on stage, I was getting closer to my classmates that quickly became my friends.

Being on stage, I never could quite tell how the musical went as a whole. I could only speak to the moments I was under those stage lights, but when I was, the air was dominated by enthusiastic voices, dedicated to making every word, every emotion visible from the back doors of the auditorium. Even if there was a mistake, the cast quickly reacted to keep the show going before I even noticed what happened.

We were rewarded after every musical number and every show with a boisterous applause, and that’s how I knew we fulfilled our job to entertain and amaze. Sometimes I was so impressed myself, I felt like joining in and applauding for my fellow cast members. We sold out every show after the first, and each time we filled every seat, it only gave us more motivation. All of those people were there to see us.

The support did not stop with the crowd below the stage, though. Before every show, the theatre teacher, Kathryn Carlsen, choir teacher, Jessica Cummings, band teacher, David Matchim,  and dance teacher, Rebecca Clark, joined us and gave us encouraging words to start the show, making sure we walked out every time with a smile on our face and focus in our eyes.

“Be sure to tell those next to you that you have their backs,” Carlsen would say.

“Break legs and hearts.”

Before the final show, I became a part of a tradition for Centennial theatre. We gathered in the choir room where we usually began to warm our voices, but this time, we started with something special. Each of the seniors involved in the technical crew, pit band, and the cast were offered a chance to give final words about their experiences in theater. Few eyes were dry by the end, though we fought to keep our stage make up intact. It was a hard goodbye for a lot of us, myself included, even if this was my first production. It made me realize just how quickly I made friends within the cast and crew, and how close we had grown in just a matter of months. I was not quite ready to let go of our time spent together, but it only meant I would have to enjoy my days even more as a senior with my newest friends from Beauty and the Beast.

We dried our eyes and found the energy that buzzed through us every time we entered the stage. Behind that curtain before our very last show, we, as a family, made a promise to break legs and hearts.

Bullying in the 21st Century

Words: Madhu Lal

Bullying and social interaction essentially go hand-in-hand. Almost everyone in our society has either experienced or encountered bullying at least once in their life. Many classes in schools have been created to help discourage kids from bullying. The consequences of bullying have also become harsher than they would have been ten years ago. Despite the best efforts of schools, bullying is still an epidemic that is spreading in schools. The Harford County Examiner reported in 2013 that, “Around half of teens have been the victims of cyber bullying.” Cyber bullying is a new form of bullying, which in some aspects can be seen as more dangerous than physical bullying.

Before the introduction of social media networking and texting, victims of bullying would be able to seek refuge at their homes, knowing that they could escape the perils of school bullying after the last bell rang. Most of the bullying going on in the past was face-to-face and took place in school. Bullying was a short lasting thing; once you graduated from that school, you were able to forget the bullies and move on and progress throughout life.

Victims in our generation are not as fortunate as the kids of the past. The introduction of texting, Facebook, Twitter, and Ask.fm have given bullies the opportunity to harass their peers, even when they aren’t in school. Victims are now not able to escape the misery they associate with school; they are followed around by streams of vicious texts and messages throughout the day and into the night. For our peers being ridiculed by others, there is no escape or safe haven they can go to in order to escape the vicious remarks.

As a result of 21st century bullying, lives are being shattered. Instead of the bullying being confined to schools, as it was in the past, bullying is now carried onto the Internet. There, the information stays permanent. Even though the information may be false, future colleges and employers may see the rumors or photos a bully has posted about the victim. As a result of seeing misleading information regarding the victim, that person may be turned down from job opportunities or denied from colleges.

If you or anyone you know is a victim of cyber bullying please contact an administrator or adult immediately, or visit the cyber bullying dropbox on the Centennial website (www.centennialeagles.org).  To learn more about cyber bullying and how to prevent being a victim, visit stopbullying.org.

Boys’ Basketball Team Comes Up Big Against Rivals Mt. Hebron

Words: Michael Moore

Photos: Martha Hutzell and Caroline Oppenheimer

On Wednesday, March 5, the Centennial boys’ basketball team took on the Mt. Hebron Vikings in the regional semi-finals at Centennial, coming away victorious, 58-38.

It was an electric atmosphere at the opening tip as Centennial took the first possession. Sophomore Tom Brown established himself inside getting multiple rebounds early in the game. The first quarter was low scoring, with the Eagles leading 10-7 going into the second quarter. Junior Isaiah White had four points in the first.

The Eagles got off to a hot start in the second quarter, dominating the time of possession. The Vikings were called for a technical foul mid-way through the second quarter, and momentum seemed to be in the Centennial’s favor. The Eagles continued their long possessions, and the Vikings played sloppy, leading to a 19-13 Centennial lead at the half.

Mt. Hebron scored two quick baskets at the start of the third quarter, but Brown stopped that run with a nice move inside. The low scoring continued for both teams. They traded baskets throughout the quarter until the Eagles scored two quick baskets of their own to end the quarter. Centennial had the lead, and all the momentum going into the final quarter.

The Eagles picked up where they left off in the fourth. The Vikings scored a 3-pointer early, but it was all Centennial from there. The Eagles capitalized on many Mt. Hebron turnovers and the Eagles were able to pull away. Junior Chad Strothers came alive in the final quarter, going to the basket hard, and converting on most of his opportunities in the paint. Seniors Chase Conley and Walter Fletcher played very well on the defensive end, causing multiple Viking turnovers that led to points in transition for the Eagles. Fletcher was also a key player on the offensive end, scoring 10 points in the game. White finished with 22 points, Strothers had 13, Brown and Fletcher finished with 10, and seniors Robert Wilkin and Conley finished with one and two points, respectively.

The Eagles traveled to City High School tonight to play for the regional championship game.