Thursday, December 13, 2012

Game Review: Far Cry 3 by Matthew W-A

I have never been a big fan of sandbox games. I tend to either finish the main (and often lackluster) story without ever engaging in the side quests or just screwing around(Fallout 3), or I meander around the world for a few hours before getting bored and moving onto something more focused (Skyrim). Far Cry 3 is the first sandbox game to truly suck me in. Every time I saw a side quest, a hunting contract, or a radio tower, I felt compelled to drop whatever I was doing and go kill the specific pirate, hunt the tiger, or scale the disturbingly rickety cell tower instead. Somehow Far Cry 3 managed to push all of the little100% completionOCD buttons in me, and I loved it.

Phil Spector at His Best

A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector By Adrian

A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector is my favorite Christmas album.  Featuring the Wall of Sound treatment on all of the songs, it is Phil Spector’s greatest LP statement.  Spector’s signature sound is well suited to the child-like and festive qualities of Christmas time, although the Wall of Sound hadn’t become spiritual yet at this point.  The vocals of the girl groups are very innocent and a little erotic: good for Christmas time, but maybe a little too innocent for record buyers at the time of its release, the same day of John F. Kennedy’s assassination.  The album was a commercial flop, foreshadowing Spector’s decline from his position as the most successful record man in America. But it’s worth a good listen—especially this time of year!

A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector
Label: Philles Records 

Portland Christmas Lights by Jacqui B.

Downtown Portland is really something that should be taken advantage of at Christmas time. The lights and view down each street blows my mind each time. I never want to leave. I’ll try as hard as I can to intentionally have a few hours to spend eating, getting hot chocolate or something, taking pictures, or just wandering whenever it’s possible. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

OES Fencing: Aiming For a Better Year! By Elanie F.

The OES Fencing program certainly has not been the one under spotlight for the past couple  of years. With few people participating, and a small number of tournaments every year, are reasons that this elegant sport loses attraction. However, with a lot more new blood and motivation, this year the team may make a difference.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Albums of the 1960s by Adrian G.

The albums of the 1960s.
The Beach Boys: Pet Sounds,
Van Morrison: Astral Weeks

These two introspective albums from the 1960s are the greatest pop albums I have ever heard.  Astral Weeks, Van Morrison’s first solo long player, is otherworldly.  Released in 1968, it defies all genres.  Musically the album is built on endless wandering woodwinds and strings over repetitive chord changes and Morrison’s rhythm and blues influenced descending vocal lines.  Each song has a unique affect, conveying a moment of intense emotional clarity.  The songs, which run together in stream of consciousness fashion, depict a person’s personal emotional narrative. Maybe I formed these ideas through the bit of pretext I picked up years ago from some newspaper clipping I read that saying that the album is about the failing of counter culture in the 1960s.  I was surprised how subtly the music and lyrics evoke innocence on side 1 of the album.  In fact I am convinced the newspaper article’s interpretation of the album is merely speculation; the album is much more enigmatic.   It is true that on the second side of the album, the singer seems much more knowing, wise.  However, he is no less overwhelmed by his emotions.  I don’t know how real the idea was that supposedly filled the heads of the youth of the 60s and that supposedly declined to some extent in the proceeding years. 

For Kicks and Giggles: Funny videos and photos by Grace C

With all the stress with finals coming up, I've been able to keep sane by watching hilarious videos and visiting websites with random, and hilarious gifs and pictures. I hope these cheer you up! 

Ok... I've realized (as I'm uploading these links, videos and pictures) that I have way too many random pictures that I've screenshot over the years of looking up random funny things. So...look for a part 2 in 2013!

Pumped Up Kicks Dance ---Video Pick by Kara T.

Thanks to Lucy Stevens for showing Kara this great find! Enjoy!

Students Share Opinions on 2012-2013 Student Leadership Ideas by Janine K.

There is a lot of information that is starting to circulate around the Upper School regarding this year’s developments for the Student Leadership initiatives of last year. Though the general consensus regarding the initial proposal last year was negative, there are some who feel more hopeful this year. “We've come to a consensus that there will be two groups that have been labeled temporarily as social and policy,” said Alex Chabert, Student Council President. “I think is a really good idea,” said a student. However, they did voice the concern that they think “there should be one president and those two different groups.” “It is important to note,” Chabert emphasizes while explaining the two possible StuCo groups, “we have not severed ties between the two.”
            There are some students who echo the concerns of last year. “Honestly, I think they are trying to hard to fix a system that wasn’t really broken in the first place,” another student says.
This is obviously a challenging topic. But the OES Student Body is willing to tackle the issues. “My personal motto is ‘you don't know until you try,’ so who knows. Changes could make it better or worse, but the way this process has gone, we won't find out which until we have tested new methods,” one student responds. "But that doesn't mean I don't like it. I feel that the current form of student council runs things well," the student adds.
The changes that have been made so far (the new responsibilities for class boards), however, have been well received. "I like the set-up this year," a student said. So far, it sounds like we might be on the right track. More to come soon on this issue.

If you have any concerns or suggestions, please visit the Student Council Website. 

Public Service Announcement

Hello all!
The previously scheduled Open Mic Night has been postponed and replaced by a SHOWING OF HOME ALONE this FRIDAY in the Great Hall from 9pm to 11pm. Before hand, everyone should go watch the basketball games!!!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Recap of the StuCo Meeting by Grace C

Last Tuesday (27th) StuCo met for half of the school day to present their research (which they have been doing since the beginning of the school year).  All four grade reps (Cameron S., Alexandra U., Michael B., Aya T.), the dorm rep (Howard X.), Secretary (Galen P.), Treasurer (Sean J.), President (Alex C.) and Vice President (Cammie O.-F.), were accompanied by head of Upper School, Jordan E. and a faculty advisor, Deb W. to discuss their research.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Black Friday Facts by Jacqui B.

Black Friday has just gotten bigger and crazier over the years. Nearly 135 million people go out to shop on the day after Thanksgiving every year. This year was pretty monumental, though. Several department stores and other big ones like Target started their “door-busters” as early as Thanksgiving evening. And not just at 11 or midnight, but at 8 p.m. Why?? 

Opinion: Mass Effect Trilogy Should Not Exist by Matthew W-A.

Mass Effect 3 was... Controversial to say the least. It was well reviewed, and an excellent game for the most part, but it had one glaring flaw that left a lot of people angry: the ending. Mass Effect 3 was advertised as the epic conclusion to the Mass Effect trilogy, and instead we got a “choose your explosion color” ending based on about the most literal interpretation of deus ex machina possible, resulting in an ending that would have made even M. Night Shyamalan cringe. The extended cut free DLC helped a bit, but it didn't do enough to really change most people's feelings about the ending What I am trying to say, is that as things stand, the Mass Effect franchise is not in good standing with it's fans, or the gaming community in general.

Giving Tree by Elanie F.

Giving Tree is one of the charity events held at OES around Thanksgiving Break and Christmas every year. All parts of OES: US, MS, and LS, faculty and students, combine their power together and help the families in the Beaverton District get warm Christmas gifts. It is a great project run by SLAC and AASK, where people have the opportunity to use their power for good.

OES Weekly Update by Spencer S.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Thanksgiving Trivia by Elanie F. and Adrian G.

Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the second Monday in October in Canada.
President George Washington issued the first national Thanksgiving Day Proclamation in the year 1789 and again in 1795.
Congress passed an official proclamation in 1941 and declared that now onwards Thanksgiving will be observed as a legal holiday on the fourth Thursday of November every year.

Toilets by Janine K and Grace C

The Best Bathroom on the OES Campus is.... The MST Top Floor Bathroom!
We all agree that this bathroom takes the cake for best experience. It is often empty, well lit, and recently renovated!

OES Soccer Rules! by Amanda R. Pictures from Syd Y.

Congratulations to the girls and boys varsity soccer teams! The girls beat St. Mary’s on Tuesday 3-0 and they are now going to the state championships. The championship game will be at Liberty High School, this Saturday, November 17th, at 10:30. 

Also, congratulations to the boys varsity soccer team! They beat Catlin Tuesday night and will also being going to the state championships at Liberty High school! Their game is shortly after the girls at 1:00 on Saturday. If you’re a soccer fan, and even if you’re not, make sure to head out to the game on Saturday to show your support! Wear green and blue, bring pom-poms, bring everything you’ve got. Just make sure to show your support.

Game Review: Deadlight by Matthew W-A

Well, this was inevitable. 2.5D games (game with two dimensional gameplay that are rendered in 3D) have become popular on XBLA and SEAM as of late, and the zombie virus has been spreading through pop culture like, well, a plague. It was only inevitable that they would eventually meet. Deadlight from the studio Tequila Works is that meeting. The question is, is it any good?

Enjoy a Strategic Black Friday! by Elanie F.

Most of the women in the United States probably have this day as their favorite–– Black Friday, or in other words, the day after Thanksgiving. Every shop puts up huge deals that draw in waves of customers in the earliest hours of the day. As customers, what can we do to make sure we get what we desire? Here are some strategies.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

New StuCo Website by Grace C.

Want to let StuCo about any thing? It could be ideas from Mystery Friday to ideas for Semi and Prom and of course the new Leadership Proposal.

Check out their new website:
StuCo Website CLICK HERE

StuCo will be releasing a document of their researches they have done so far this year about their finding about different leadership structures at other schools and list of things they want to fix/keep.

Please utilize this website to be updated about the Leadership Proposal and of course, to let StuCo know of any concerns or ideas for events!

OES Weekly Update. November 14th 2012 by Spencer S

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Setting the Stage for The Gifted Program. Photo by Amanda R.

Stagecraft in The Gifted Program by Amanda R

The stagecraft activity has been hard at work to prepare the set for the play. And behind it all is Cameron Jack, who is both the scenic designer and the technical designer for the play. He’s in charge of making sure that the set is functional and pretty looking, and that the lights are working properly. Designing a set in the great hall has proved to be fairly challenging, so Cameron Jack has decided to build it in a three-quarter thrust layout. All that means is that the audience sits on three sides of the stage rather than just directly in front of it. Since there isn’t much of a backstage, they are putting a black sheet that is connected to a metal pole from the top of the set, and the balcony. This provides a makeshift backstage. While rooms 60 and 61 are going to be dressing rooms for actors not on stage. This will hopefully maximize the usage space before, during, and after the play.

The set was built by creating separate pieces down at SPARC. They’re then loaded into a truck, and reassembled in the great hall. So essentially, the stagecrafters are having to build this set twice if you count taking it down as well. Cameron Jack hopes that this would help keep the great hall remain functional while still being able to have the set in place. If you’ve noticed behind the main stage, there is some clutter. Well, that’s where they’re holding all of their props so that they’re out of the way during gathering or when people are just walking to their next class. It also gives them a place to put their props when they aren’t being used. There are also wheels on most of their props to make their scene changes as easily and smooth as possible.

Games You Probably Haven't Tried Yet: Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines by Matthew W.A

Did you know that there was a time when vampire's didn't suck? Before Twilight came and ruined everything, vampires were actually pretty awesome. TV shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angle, and the British miniseries Ultraviolet told interesting and often dark stories, and pen and paper roleplaying games like Vampire the Masquerade wove tales of political intrigue and backstabbing. Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines (which from here on out I will just call “Bloodlines”) was at the tail end of that era when it came out in 2004, and did an amazing job of capturing the feel of being a vampire.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Student Leadership Update by Janine K.

You may be wondering what the status is of the Student Leadership proposal, which was debated during second semester last year. Last week, Grace C. and I attended an informal StuCo meeting, where we were briefed on their goals, timeline, and process for creating a new student government for the Class of 2014 election that will take place this coming June. 

Fall Sports: Coming Down to the Wire by Grace C

It seems crazy how the Fall sports season is coming to a close and in less than one week, Winter sports are starting back up.  However, there's no better excuse to miss a Winter sport practice because you're still practicing for your Fall sport. This as been a trend at OES for the past couple years.

The Gifted Program Photos: Terror in the Hallway. Photo by John H.

The Gifted Program Photos: The D&D Club in Action. Photo by John H.

Play Review: The Gifted Program By Jacqui B

OK, so everyone actually needs to go see the fall play this week. It’s hilarious. You will be missing out if you don’t. I’m not kidding.
Here is the description from the OES website:

In 1986, at the very bottom of Washington High's social food chain are the last remaining members of the Dungeons & Dragons' club: four maladapted refugees from a defunct program for gifted and talented students, who have been thrown into the harsh arena of an inner-city public high school.
When the identity of a secret admirer is revealed, the school's rigid hierarchy is upended; for Washington High's four most unpopular students, the simple pursuit of an education becomes a fight for survival.

When I first heard the description of the storyline for The Gifted Program at the beginning of the school year, honestly I thought it could be a little cheesy. Nope. It’s like watching juicy drama unfold before your eyes in a two-hour timespan. And, honestly, you can’t say you don’t enjoy that...

The Gifted Program photos: Garrett W in his Favorite Hat. Photo by John H.

The Gifted Program Photos: The Popular Girls are Gagging. Photo by John H.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Of Orcs and Men

Game Review: Of Orcs and Men By Matthew W-A

I feel really conflicted writing this review. The concept and the trailer for the game looked fairly promising, and I enjoyed the final product. I didn't have any problems finishing the game. I never felt bored, or wanted to close the game and do something else. On the other hand, Of Orcs and Men has enough issues that I am not entirely sure it's actually a “good “game.

Of Orcs and Men is a game about an orc with serious anger management problems (Arkail) and a foul-mouthed sarcastic goblin (Styx) who are off on a quest to kill the human emperor before he can meet with envoys from the elves and the dwarves to stamp out the orcs once and for all. The orcs have been pushed to the brink by the genocidal human empire, and this is a final act of desperation. The two main characters are multidimensional and interesting (especially the goblin), and are just all around well animated, voice acted and written. Unfortunately, everyone else has the collective depth of a sheet of rice paper. Every NPC feels like a poorly animated cliché, which is made much more noticeable by the quality of Arkail and Styx. The animations for all of the human characters just look stiff and unnatural more often than not, and the character models come uncomfortably close to the uncanny valley. I also saw a lot of animations being reused in conversations, like Arkail's shoulder shrug, and Styx's full body  head shake/finger wag...

Of Orcs and Men

What I’ve been listening to lately by Adrian G

I have just begun listening to albums from the record label Stax/Volt. Stax
and the subsidiary label Volt were one of the main proponents of Southern Soul in
the 1960s. Founded by two white conservative country musicians, but supported
by primarily black artists, the label helped solidify the notion that black and white
people can work together. It was one of the first independent labels to challenge the
predominate labels like Columbia. It also brought upon the world the force that is
Soul music, a powerful mix of gospel, blues and rock and roll.

FYI: What’s the ERB? By Amanda R

The ERB, Educational Records Bureau, is a standardized test that goes through grades fifth and twelfth. Though it occurs for students once or even twice, a year, it does not count for the students grades at all. It is used to be compared throughout the United States using tests from children all around America. However, the test  doesn’t count toward our grades. So why do we take it? Well, it gives each student an opportunity to practice taking standardized testing. The test also serves as an external measurement for the school to identify strengths and weaknesses in the curricular program. Also, if needed, it gives the teachers a sense of where you are and your strengths, weaknesses, etc..

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Polar Bear Café by Elanie F.

While October is bringing a large wave of new animes, some of the currently broadcasting ones are still popular enough to be mentioned. The Polar Bear Café is generally accepted as the cutest anime of the year since April. This anime introduces a world of mostly animals and a few humans; just like the name, the story is about the daily life happening around this café owned by a the polar bear, and his frequent customers include an emperor the penguin, a the panda and many other animals such as llama and sloth. The three cute main characters have done a great job making this anime relaxing and funny.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Junior Retreat by Jacqui B.

Last week, during “wellness week” the juniors celebrated being done with PSATs by going away for two days with each other for a “Relationships Retreat” (or sex camp, but really- the “relationships retreat”). The focus of the two days was more on healthy relationships, and less unpleasant STD talks, than what the sophomores on campus “retreat” during wellness week. We heard valuable information from very interesting outside speakers as well as having discussion times in smaller groups. I’ll save the details of what we talked about for the underclassmen to find out for themselves, but it got us talking about important topics with each other. While maybe considering deeply about relationships was not our ideal choice for a trip, it was nice to get away, hang out with friends that normally there’s not enough time during a crazy school day to, eat good snacks, and the Aldersgate retreat center was beautiful.

Oppa Gangnam -- What?! By Janine K. (Special thanks to Roy L.)

We are all singing and dancing to it. It has become part of our culture and spirit here at OES. That's right, 'it' is PSY's "Gangnam Style." But, as I do not speak Korean I felt sort of strange [trying my best at] singing alone whilst having no idea what was going on. So, without further ado, here is BBC's Gangnam Style translation. Special thanks to Roy L. For finding it for us!

Why Peter Langley and I Need a Rematch By Grace C.

So here’s the scoop on why Peter totally annihilated me on stage during Trivia on Wednesday morning. Last weekend, while I was drowning in my homework, I was listening to some beautiful music by Jason Mraz on Spotify, when out of whim I started to whistle along with his song, “I Won’t Give Up”.  I had learned how to whistle at a young age, imitating my dad who actually whistles through his teeth rather than his lips.  I was getting so into my whistling and because I was procrastinating on Twitter (as usual), I sent a tweet to our trivia master Georgia...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Mark of the Ninja Review by Matthew W.A

Mark of the Ninja is a really good game. I'm not saying that because the developer Klei sent me a review copy (although they did. Thanks Klei, you guys are awesome), but because it really is. Mark of the Ninja is about a ninja clan that has survived until modern day, but is suddenly attacked by the forces of a man named Karajan. To protect the clan, an unnamed ninja is given a tattoo using a toxic ink that grants him special powers but will also drive him slowly insane. From there on out, he goes on a globe trotting adventure to assassinate Karajan, only things don't go exactly as planned. The story is really well told, and becomes surprisingly emotional at times. There are a few cutscenes within the game that are beautifully animated, but most of the story is told through gameplay, which as far as I am concerned is the best way to do it. I found the story to be engaging, so I'm going to do my best not to spoil it here.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Baked Goods by Jacqui B.

 For all the baked goods lovers out there, this is about the time of year where your sweet tooth suddenly decides it likes pumpkin better than anything else, and the baking urge just start to take over.

Here are some dangerous recipes- for you to either bake yourself, (or if you just like to eat them) you can beg your mom or a super nice friend to make them for you:

Pumpkin Bread- my personal favorite thing to bake for fall and it’s pretty simple, tastes even better with chocolate chips in it, and it’s pretty amazing for breakfast with some cream cheese
( From
Makes 3-7x3 inch loaf pans
1 can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup water
3 cups white sugar
3 ½ cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground ginger

1.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf plans.
2.     In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water, and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
3.     Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

This link has TONS of different variations on pumpkin bread, with even a video on how to make it:

Pumpkin Streusel Cheesecake Bars

Cookie Base:
1 pouch Betty Crocker oatmeal cookie mix
½ cup crushed gingersnap cookies
½ cup finely chopped pecans
½ cup cold butter or margarine

2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
2 tablespoons whipping cream
2 eggs

1/3 cup chocolate topping
1/3 cup caramel topping

1.     Heat oven to 350 F. In large bowl, stir together cookie mix, crushed cookies and pecans. Cut in butter, using pastry blender or fork, until mixture is crumbly. Reserve 1 cup mixture for topping. Press remaining mixture in bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch pan. Bake 10 minutes. Cool 10 minutes.
2.     Meanwhile, in large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add remaining filling ingredients; beat until well blended. Pour over warm cookie base. Sprinkle with reserved topping.
3.     Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until center is set. Cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate about 2 hours or until chilled.
4.     Before serving, drizzle with chocolate and caramel toppings. For bars, cut into 6 rows by 4 rows. Store covered in refrigerator.

Also- here are some more unique one’s if you get bored:

Pumpkin pancakes
(The pumpkin pancake mix from Trader Joe’s is pretty amazing as well)

Blondie Brownie Reese’s Bars

Caramel Apple Bars

Pumpkin Butterscotch Nutella Bread

And a way to make home made pumpkin spice lattes:

Go crazy!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Congratulations Women's Soccer! By Janine K.

Sydney Y. was a star player in the OES vs. Catlin game. Photo by Grace C.
Congratulations to the Women’s Varsity Soccer Team, who played Catlin at the action packed Catlin Homecoming game last Friday night, which ended in Aardvark favor (2-0). So far this season, the OES Women’s team has been ranked first in the OSAA 3A ranking, which is not surprising as the team was named the 2011 3A/2A/1A Champions in the State of Oregon after defeating the very same Catlin Eagles in a 3-0 match last year.

Filling in the Void: The Masthead by Grace C

Our new Blophish website has gone through some cosmetic changes.  As you see we have injected our new fonts with some color, the sidebar is donned with a slideshow of pictures and a twitter feed, as well as a link to the lunch menu. Our background is a nice oasis of fresh water that reminds us the summer to come…in 8 months.  The articles that the Blophish staff is writing have never been matched before. We publish a plethora of articles like original video skits by Spencer S. a continuation of our last editor in Chief, Chad D.’s video game reviews by Matthew W.A and some delicious autumn recipes by Jacqui B. 

However, there is one huge thing missing. The masthead.   You might have noticed that the top of our blog is unadorned. Some may call it simple and clean, maybe even Zen to keep the good chi running through our blog, but what’s Blophish without a picture of the mascot?

Our wonderful teacher leader, Kara T. has drawn us this cute cartoon of our official (and original) mascot.  If you see a picture of this hanging around the HS campus, write in a caption and we’ll use the best ones to rotate as our masthead. More than one caption is allowed in each speech bubble. Fill them in!


Games You Might Not Have Tried Yet: Mirror's Edge By Matthew W-A

Screen Shot by Author
There are two types of failures in the games industry: games that fail because they are simply generic and mediocre, and games that try something interesting that don’t quite work. Some of the latter can even be brilliant in their own limited ways. Mirror's Edge definitely falls into the second category. There is really nothing quite like it. Mirror's Edge is a first person game that discards most of the tropes of first person games for something entirely different. Are there enemies? Yes. Do you have to kill them? No. Are there guns? Yes. Do you ever have to use one? Aside from a single sniping section near the end of the game, no.

OES Weekly Update. October 10, 2012 by Spencer S

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Anime By Elanie F.

If you follow Japanese Anime, you must be excited about October 2012! Although January, April, July and October are all big months in terms of new anime releases, October is considered to be the best. For example, in October 2012, we have Code Breaker, K, Magi, Bakuman the 3rd season, etc. Among them, Bakuman the 3rd season is probably the best one for all age groups.

Bakuman is written by Ooba Tsugumi and drawn by Obata Takeshi, and has been animated twice before 2012. The story is about two high schoolers chasing their dream of being animators. “Baku” in Japanese means a legendary animal that eats dreams, which implies here that the boys are aggressively reaching for their goals.

The narrator, Mashiro Saikou, receives a note from his classmate Takagi Akito, saying “let’s draw comics together!” Drawing comics is Mashiro’s dream as well, but he does not want to follow in the footsteps of his animator uncle who died tragically. Ashiro turns Takagi down at first, he soon changes his mind after realizing the girl that he has had a crush on since middle school loves comics. Mashiro and the girl make a promise that they will get married when Mashiro becomes a professional comic drawer. In order to achieve both his dream and the girl he loves, Mashiro and Takagi think about stories, draw comics, and send their products out to different magazines. On their way towards becoming professionals, they encounter a lot of obstacles: rivals, pressure from the editors, lack of inspiration, and so on. But Mashiro and Takagi, having combined their names to form the pen name “Ashirogi,” use teamwork as their strongest weapon. Will they achieve their dream and become popular comic drawers? Will Mashiro be able to marry his girlfriend? The Bakuman comics already ended in 2012, but the third TV season is new!

The second season ends when the “Ashirogi” pair finds out that one of their classmates in middle school is drawing comics as well, as her comics are competing for popularity. The 3rd season is going to continue showing the challenges and how the two boys are overcoming adversity. Of course, there are also some dating scenes included as well! Overall, this is a fun anime to watch, as it is very relatable. The boys are normal high schoolers; they laugh, resolve issues, care about their girlfriends, and never give up on their dreams.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Sam L. Participates in Cultural Exchange Program by Adrian G.

Many Americans have difficulty understanding the Muslim culture in the Middle East.  With the recent publishing of a video mocking the Muslim prophet Muhammad by an American extremist group, relationships between Americans and Muslims in the Middle East have been particularly unstable.  Fortunately, students from both Iraq and the United States are reaching out to strengthen ties between Iraq and U.S. by engaging in peaceful cultural exchange programs.  OES student, Sam L., was selected to participate in the Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program, a program working to cultivate leadership skills in young Americans and Iraqi’s and ultimately a stronger future for Iraq.  The program is put on by the U.S. Department of State, but also has funding from the Iraq government through the U.S. embassy in Baghdad.