Right after a day of misfortune (Friday the 13th) comes Valentine's Day - the day where love and commercialism are in the air, creating an annoying sense of obligation for some, a romantic pink-laden aura in others and a ping of loneliness to all the single ladies (yes, all the single ladies) and gents. But never fear, this month of romantic endeavors comes with help.
Recently, Fairfax County transportation planners developed a no-cost proposal to deliver high school students to school later in the morning, possibly pushing the starting bell to 8:30 a.m. from 7:20 a.m. Excuse me while I find a suitable outlet for my jealousy.
It may soon dawn on the casual gamer that Guitar Hero and Rock Band can only be played on expert so many times before they get old. At some point, everyone needs something that they can sink their teeth into, lest they go back to doing something productive like homework (gasp!). Fortunately, that game has arrived, and its name is "Left 4 Dead."
The last weekend of games before the big game is here. Philly and Arizona squars off to determine who wins the NFC, and Baltimore and Pittsburgh duel to decide which AFC North team will win the AFC title.
The NFL playoffs kicked off last week with a great set of games. The Cardinals exerted their dominance over rookie Matt Ryan and the Falcons. The Chargers knocked the Colts out in overtime. The Ravens forced Miami into five turnovers even though the Dolphins entered the game with the fewest turnovers in the league. The Eagles spooked the league with a stellar defensive performance against the Vikings.
The BCS may not have a playoff system, but the NFL sure does. Wildcard games kickoff this weekend with four matchups. The Chargers defeated the Broncos on Sunday night to get a playoff spot and the Dolphins beat the New York "Bretts" for the other AFC playoff spot.
The Redskins' playoff chances are dying quickly, but they're not dead yet. The Skins need to win out and get tremendous help from other teams to get the final wild card spot. It's not impossible, but it is much more difficult following a loss to the Bengals.
The Redskins' playoff hopes are diminishing quickly as they have fallen deep into an offensive slump, epitomized by their loss to the Ravens last Sunday. At the same time, running back Clinton Portis is lashing out against coach Jim Zorn for not giving him enough touches late in the game.
Drama was in New York this week as Plaxico Burress's season has effectively ended following a four-game suspension from the Giants' front office. Burress may have more troubles ahead with a bigger authority: the law.
We know all teachers have seemingly inappropriate questions about students. So take a break from the grading, planning and acting like you're awake. If you're funny enough, we'll publish you (with or without your name) so that all your students can laugh with (at) you! Plus, we promise you won't get fired for your opinions. At least until our fearless leader Mr. Williams files a lawsuit, in which case we may be forced to disband or give your name, all in the name of Blair, so that the media won't tar our reputation.
After a short week of school, students get a long Thanksgiving weekend to eat heartily, be with family and watch football. The NFL scheduled three games for turkey day and the rest at normal times. However, us experts take Thanksgiving as a break and therefore did not pick those three games.
One of the best fall activities is ripping the gooey, stringy pumpkin guts out of the top of a pumpkin. While anyone's inner artist is giddy with excitement over making a name for themselves on the orange canvas, their inner chef is crying out for self expression. Don't throw away those pumpkin seeds; use them for a snack that's good for the entire winter.
This last week in the NFL saw the Titans continue their undefeated streak, the Lions continue their defeated streak, the Skins fall to the Cowboys and the Eagles and Bengals tie. Tie? Yes, apparently games can end in ties. It was the first tie in the NFL since the 2002 season.
The Skins are back after their bye week and welcome with them ex-Raider cornerback DeAngelo Hall. However, concerns over an injury to Clinton Portis could spoil his welcoming and make a victory for Washington harder as they take on Dallas at FedEx Field.
Brady Quinn made his NFL debut on Thursday night against the Broncos and he did not disappoint. Unfortunately, the unsure hands of Kellen Winslow (and other factors) cost the Browns the game. All three of our experts picked correctly, giving them a 1-0 record in week 10 action so far.
We're back! After a five-month hiatus. the A.S.K. (Anika, Sean and Kevin) combination has valiantly re-energized themselves and triumphed in a tiring war with laziness for a new (actual) round of Ask Chips. For those of you who remember us and have requested our re-emergence as a world power, yay! We hope you're as excited about our second return as we are. Of course, if you ever have any questions, e-mail email@example.com and we'll hook you up. We use your semi-appropriate (and even fully inappropriate) questions when we can, so it's your time to be funny (in that way) if you are funny (in that way). We love you (in that way, bom chicka wah wah). So, without further ado, let's answer some questions!
Our story begins with our humble food editor visibly salivating while watching a Japanese dubbed version of "Iron Chef." He remembers that he won't be eating for another hour. He looks out the window with sad eyes and remembers that winter is coming. People are closing up their barbecue sets, the leaves are coming down in droves of red, green, yellow and brown, the air is cold and heavy snows are taking their sweet time getting to Montgomery County. He looked back at the tube eyeing a succulent burger with a look of carnal desire, remembering that a wise man once said that vegetarians taste delicious. With this revelation, he frantically begged his peers to find the best local burgers and review them for the greater good of the Blair community, if not the world.
Welcome to an early edition of SCO's NFL predictions. Thanks to the Cleveland Browns and the Denver Broncos, football fans get an early dose of action on Thursday night. Our regular recap of last week will come in the full edition of this week's picks in the next few days, but to get you started, let's see how our experts fared last week.
The Tennessee Titans continue to impress. Their latest victims: the Indianapolis Colts. A 7-0 start is unprecedented for the growing franchise. Who knows where it will take them - maybe to the Super Bowl with the currently 6-2 Redskins? The Skins take on the Steelers on Monday Night Football before heading into their bye week.
Another tumultuous week for Dallas finds the Cowboys falling at the hands of the Rams, who have now knocked off two NFC East powers in a row. Brett Favre has been accused of telling the Lions how to beat the Packers. Well, it didn't help them if he did. But the main stories coming into week eight are injuries. The Patriots lost two starters and the Saints lost a star running back. On a positive note, the Eagles get back Bryan Westbrook this week.
The NFC East was once thought to be untouchable, but then week six happened. The previously undefeated Giants fell to the then-one-win Browns. Our hometown Redskins fell to the then-winless Rams. And the Cowboys fell to the Cardinals in overtime. The Eagles were able to dispose of the 49ers.
And then there were two. The Bills fell last week, leaving only the Giants and the Titans with perfect records so far. Our hometown Redskins are not far off with a 4-1 record after winning four straight games, two of which were division road games. This week, the Skins tackle the winless Rams in what should be an easy match up, but crazy things happen in the NFL. In other league news, "Pacman" Jones is in trouble once again and his career hangs in the balance.
Hello all! Welcome to this new exciting experience that is my "blog." As Humor and Food Editor, I'd like to talk about something safe the first time so that my editors don't hurt me. With that said, I'd like to talk about my shoes.
Washington celebrated last week as the 'Skins marched into Texas Stadium and took care of the Cowboys with Santana Moss showing what he can do when he's healthy. The Broncos' undefeated streak ended at the hands of the then-winless Chiefs. But a new week brings new match-ups to keep an eye on. The hometown Redskins head to Philly for another division battle against the possibly Brian Westbrook-less Eagles. The Titans and Ravens square off in a battle of tough defenses as the Titans try to remain undefeated along with the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills.
Back in the good old days, the way to make a good impression on a teacher was to polish an apple and give it to them. But over the years, teachers have taken control of their fiber intake and rendered such acts of self-interest and faked kindness useless. Though we know that teachers no longer need us to stay regular, we also know that a sizable percentage of them have a sweet tooth - this is where we can strike.
Another week brought another Redskins victory, but also left many big-name players out for a few games. Jeremy Shockey, Willie Parker, Dawan Landry and Jason Taylor will all miss this week and possibly more. Also in the NFC East, Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress has been suspended for two weeks for violating team rules, though a bye week for the Giants means he will only miss one game during week five.
Every day, Blair is plagued by a familiar problem that almost all high schools face: traffic. Every day, certain places are always crowded, such as the intersection between even and odd hallways, and places where classrooms are locked so every kid in the class and his ridiculously oversized backpack is suffocating the flow of traffic. But my personal favorite, Blair Boulevard between 5A and 5B lunch, takes the cake.
Another week into the season and coach Jim Zorn has his first win as a head coach, in thrilling fashion too. Meanwhile, rookie safety Chris Horton looked good on the field, reminding some of the late Sean Taylor. A disputed call gave Denver a victory over San Diego as the Broncos went for two in the closing seconds instead of kicking the extra point to tie the game. Who does that? The Vikings are now 0-2 and the Packers are 2-0. And Matt Cassel knocked off Brett Favre's Jets, showing he is a suitable starter in place of the injured Tom Brady.
Only one week into the season and so much has happened already. Tom Brady is out for the season with a knee injury and is replaced by career-backup Matt Cassel. Brett Favre showed he can still play in his Jets debut. The Bears crushed the Colts with Kyle Orton at the helm. And our hometown Redskins got off to a slow start as the west coast offense looked more like it should have stayed in the west. But a new week brings new match-ups and another chance for the Redskins.
As school begins to pick up, sports fans will find some solace on weekends and Monday nights with the NFL season ready to kick off! Adrian Peterson is back to dominate, Brett Favre returns for another season following a soap opera offseason and the hometown Skins look to use new head coach Jim Zorn's West Coast offense to turn heads in the NFC. Thursday starts what promises to be an NFL season with many stories and many glories.
We're back! After a two-year hiatus - due to lame bureaucratic incompatibilities - the A.S.K. (that's Anika, Sean and Kevin, your resident geniuses) combination has fought valiantly and triumphed in an emotional war for a new (potential) round of Ask Chips. For those of you who remember us, yay! We hope you're as excited about our return as we are. For those of you who have no idea who we are, that is perfectly fine - you'll learn quickly. So, without further ado, let's answer some questions!
From the directors that brought you the Matrix trilogy comes "Speed Racer." The Wachowskis direct this live action film adaptation of the 1960s Japanese anime "Speed Racer" and achieve sub-par results.
Without missing a beat, Harold and Kumar return to the big screen in the boldest manner possible. "Escape from Guantanamo Bay" has everything that made the first a success and more: racy humor, ethnic jokes, general hilarity and two new directors, Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg.
Every cop drama hinges on one theme: cops are human too - from "Training Day" to the "The Shield." "Street Kings" successfully takes this overused theme and shapes it into a fresh cop movie about a policeman's notions of the world around him.
This Friday from 5:30 to 9 p.m., the annual Blair Fair will be held for the entire school community. At the same time, the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) will be hosting the Silent Auction to raise money for its program, according to coordinator Donna Beausoleil. From 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., the third annual Poetry Slam will be held in the Media Center.
After playing a zombie killer, a zealous cop fighting off a homicidal neighborhood watch and a bearded cannibal, Simon Pegg comes back to the big screen to act in a romantic comedy about commitments and running a marathon. Thankfully, despite several cliched points, good acting and British humor saved this film from being the inspirational type of movie that belongs in the 80s.
A three-judge panel of the California District Court of Appeals ruled on Feb. 28 that parents statewide who do not have teaching credentials can no longer home school their children. The ruling stems from a case involving eight home-schooled children who claimed that their parents were abusing them. Citing a 1953 ruling in which another appellate court rejected a challenge to California's education laws, Justice Walter Croskey ruled that parents do not have a constitutional right to home school their children. But parents argue that the approximately 166,000 home schooled students in California will be forced to enroll in conventional schools - an enormous undertaking. Should Maryland, with its 24,329 home-schooled students, follow in California's footsteps?
Many travelers on Rockville Pike likely pass Il Pizzico without half a thought of what it might be. Situated in a dull strip mall on the side of the road, few would suspect that they are missing out on one of the best and most authentic Italian restaurants in the Washington, D.C.-metropolitan area.
On March 14, pi gets all the credit. It has helped countless mathematicians solve problems and make corny jokes, but pies are not the only food for the geometrically inclined. This year the cupcake is bringing geometry back. These cylindrical sweets not only contain a doughy center, chocolate and candy but they also have different formulas on them. Useful and tasty!
There are some movies that like to masquerade under the title of "based on a true story," as this title seems to give a blank check as to how far a movie can move into absurdity or falsehood. Fortunately, "The Bank Job" is not one of those movies.
NELSON H. KOBREN GYMNASIUM, FEB. 21 – The girls' varsity basketball team fell to the Gaithersburg Trojans in a one-sided 30-60 rout in their final game of the season.
There are two kinds of people that go see chick flicks: the emotional kind who can already tell if they will be moved to tears just by the previews and the other kind, innocents dragged there by said emotional people. Fortunately, "Definitely, Maybe" is armed with a realistic and highly original plot that will satisfy both camps.
Blair Network Communications (BNC) will be hosting its annual "Semester Shakedown," a Downcounty mixer, this Friday from 7 - 10:30 p.m. in the SAC. The casual-dress dance is open to all Montgomery County high school students with a school ID, according to BNC Public Relations Executive Director senior Sriya Sarkar.
The Blazers (4-10) defeated the Sherwood Warriors 50-45 with crowd-pleasing plays in the last minute to end the 45-45 stalemate.
While Washington's beloved Redskins are once again not in the Super Bowl, plenty of Blazers will be celebrating the annual occasion. Whether you're in it for the football game, the half-time show or the costly commercials, you're going to need some refreshment to keep you going through the night. Forget the Patriots and the Giants, these mouth-watering goodies that will make Rachel Ray jealous are the real winners.
The Blair administration held the first fire drill of 2008 today during seventh period at 1:45 p.m. The school has now finished half of the ten fire drills mandated by MCPS for one school year.
High-pressure defense by the Richard Montgomery Rockets (4-6) forced the Lady Blazers (3-7) to turn the ball over repeatedly and not get into an offensive rhythm, leading to a 66-42 loss on Wednesday night. The absence of junior point guard Jenny Williams, the team's leading scorer, was heavily felt.
NELSON H. KOBREN GYMNASIUM, Jan. 11 – The Lady Blazers broke a four game losing streak Friday night and won their first home game, defeating the Magruder Colonels, 52-47.
NELSON H. KOBREN GYMNASIUM, Jan. 4 – Despite improved play and hard-nosed defense in the second half, the efforts of the girls' varsity basketball team fell short on Friday night. The Blazers (2-4) dropped their third game in a row to the Springbrook Blue Devils, 41-36.
With the NFL regular season wrapping up, it's easy to forget that the college football regular season is already over. While there are no playoffs in the BCS, there are bowl games for eligible teams, as well as the national championship game. This year's championship matchup features two two-loss teams in LSU and Ohio State, which leads to many questions in the BCS. What about undefeated Hawaii? Should there be a playoff system? Such topics are not for us to debate, so we'll take the bowls for what they're worth. We, backed by our SCO expertise, will take a look at the four main bowl games and the national championship game, picking a winner in each while pitching in our two cents. If ESPN analysts leave you confused, we hope these simplified explanations will give you a better idea of what each team brings to the field.
NELSON H. KOBREN GYMNASIUM, Dec. 19 – Plagued by defensive errors, the Blazers fell frustratingly 31-61 to the evenly matched Churchill Bulldogs, bringing the Blair's record to 2-3.
The shorthanded Blair's girls' varsity basketball team lost to the Wootton Patriots in a disappointing home game on Friday, 66-41. Although the Blazers kept up with the Patriots in the first half, their lack of players eventually took its toll in the second, as the Patriots stepped up their defense while putting together a series of unanswered runs.
The varsity girls' basketball team fell to the Kennedy Cavaliers at home on Friday, 47-44. Despite starting the game well and fighting hard in the fourth quarter, the Blazers allowed cold shooting to put them on the losing end of a tight game.
The PTSA installed two answering machines last week to play back InfoFlow in hopes of improving communication between parents and the school, according to PTSA co-president Dave Ottalini. The machines have been fully operational as of Monday and can be reached at 301-649-2893 (English) and 301-649-2833 (Spanish).
HEREFORD HIGH SCHOOL, Nov. 10 – Blair's two top runners, senior Johanna Gretschel and junior Rutvij Pandya, ran well Saturday, finishing 28th in 20:55 and 48th in 18:01 respectively at the Maryland 4A State Meet held at Hereford High School.
WATKINS MILL, Nov. 1 In a race without many surprises, the girls' cross country team placed 11th while the boys placed 10th out of 12 teams at the regional race held at Watkins Mill High School on Nov. 1.
BLAKE, Nov. 2 The varsity girls' volleyball team traveled to Blake for their first, and ultimately last, playoff game of the season on Friday, losing in an upsetting 3-0 match. The Bengals triumphed by scores of 25-11, 25-17 and 25-19, with a superior defense and precise, hard spikes. The loss ended Blair's season with a record of 7-8.
As a way to boost school spirit before the homecoming game and dance, a pep rally was held today during seventh period. Rain forced the SGA to move the event into the gym, and classes were assigned to come down for one of the two halves.
The financial office reported a dramatic drop in the amount of obligations owed by students. The decrease is likely due to changes in school policy, according to Donna Franklin, financial secretary.
If forced to choose between your family, your significant other or the lifestyle you love, which would you choose? In "We Own the Night," director James Gray beautifully illustrates the struggle of an ordinary man seeking to find the balance between kin, love and career.
CANDY CANE PARK, Oct. 2 - The Lady Blazers came away with a narrow victory against Bethesda Chevy Chase High School with a score of 27-28 on Tuesday, but the boys suffered a whopping defeat of 15-48. Despite the loss, most of the team set personal records on the flat and fast course.
DERWOOD, MD, Sept. 25 - The boys cross country team lost to Magruder 25-32 and the girls won by a slim margin of 27-28, leaving both the girls' and boys' record at 1-3.
In this sports comedy directed by Ben Garant, a disgraced ping-pong champion is given a shot at redemption and a chance to avenge the death of his father in the world of secret underground ping-pong tournaments.
The administration has implemented an advisory period to replace the homeroom period for the 2007-2008 school year. The class, which follows an idea originally backed by new Principal Darryl Williams and Academies Coordinator Jennifer Kempf, will be in effect the first day of school and bi-monthly after that.
Recently, Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff said it was his "gut feeling" that the country faces a higher risk of terrorist attack in the summer, which raises the question: are we really safer with this government agency, which has one-fourth of its top leadership positions unfilled? Since it was established on Nov. 25, 2002, the Department of Homeland Security has been at constant odds with the mission it was supposed to accomplish and people it was designed to protect.
At long last the Simpsons hit the big screen in the only way that they can - with irreverent humor and general hilarity that fans have come to know and expect.
Melt the chopped semisweet chocolate, stirring occasionally.
Prepare a pot with butter to marinate said pumpkin seeds while salting them.
Behold, your salty snack in all its crunchy glory.
After Marinating the seeds, salt them for good measure and bad cholesterol.
After removing the seeds from the pumpkin guts, allow seeds to dry.
The Fuddruckers Burger. Genus Burgerus Species Fuddruckus.
The Five Guys burger in all its glory.
Mushrooms + Sour Cheese + Burger Patty = Goodness.
The not-so-urbane burger from Urban Burger.
The shoe in question.
Once you've mixed the eggs, water and oil, it should look like this.
Though this is brownie mix, don't try to take it through airport security. Seriously.
The final product in all its glory.
As you pour, steer clear of all distractions or obstructions unless you like your brownies chunky and uneven.
Simon Pegg returns in a romantic comedy about love, commitment, and lots of running.
An appetizer as filling as an entree, with feta cheese and tomatoes soaked in a tasty sauce.
Ground-up olives on bread: not for butter lovers.
Tasty venison, an unorthodox treat.
Almost there: and ready for that oven.
The final treats, celebrating pi day in style.
Into the bowl: vegetable oil, eggs, water and cake mix mingle together.
Freshly frosted and ready to decorate
Grated cheese adds more flavor to this explosive dip.
After baking for 35-40 minutes, enjoy these spicy wings.
Finally, add some black olives for an uncommon but delicious flavor.
Lettuce adds some crunch to the salsa.
Be sure to get rid of the roots from green onions.
Fresh lettuce should be cut into bite-sized pieces.
Here is the final product, ready to save or serve!
Chicken wings should be pink with no blemishes.
Wings mixed with spices should be completely covered.
After cheese is spread generously over the layers, onions add a little more crunch.
Salsa brings a kick atop the smooth guacamole.
No dip is complete without guacamole!
Football-shaped quesadillas are a delightful Super Bowl snack.
Cream cheese and seasoning mix form the base of the dip.