Thursday, May 31, 2018

Reminiscing About Byram by Sara B.

As my final year at Byram is coming to a close, the days are swiftly zipping by.  It is odd-the more I am here, the more I don’t want to leave.  As adolescents, all we want to do is leave middle school, grow up and move on.  It seems that graduation day is something my peers and I are both looking forward to and dreading.  As the year closes out, I am thinking about all of the teachers and activities I will be leaving behind here.  Although it is bittersweet leaving, Byram Intermediate is our safe place, and it will terrifying and exciting to take that security blanket off.

Being here for four years, no one can deny we have had good days, bad days, exciting days, stressful days, happy days, and so many in between.  We spent a huge chunk of our childhood in this school.  Saying goodbye is going to be very difficult, but again I know the security blanket just needs to be taken off.  The teachers here have molded me into the student I have always strived to be, and no matter what, they always wanted me to succeed. Byram Intermediate created my love for language arts, writing, track, reading, and all things academic.  The amazing teachers here have always told me not to give up.  I know I will meet new teachers who will inspire me, but some of the ones here will always have a special place.

Now that I look back on Byram, I should have enjoyed it more it seems.  Eighth grade went by very quickly and was personally my favorite.  Graduating is going to be bittersweet, but my time here at Byram is up, and I will always have the amazing memories here.  As we all get rid of our security blankets and move on, we will never forget our years here at Byram.  Thank you to everyone who helped make my years here memorable and incredible!

Magic: The Gathering by Michael B.

Magic the Gathering has been around for a while, and every year several new expansions and packs arrive. The most recent pack is called Amonkhet, so let's dive right into it!

Amonkhet is an expansion which explores the world of Amonkhet. It is part of the block with the same name, and the other pack is called Hour of Devastation. The whole place of Amonkhet is somewhat based on Egypt and its mythology. There are also new mechanics, which brings us to our next section.

There are four new mechanics and two new spell types. The mechanics are embalm, exert, brick counters, and -1/-1 counters. Embalm means a creature can create a zombie copy of itself, with the same stats and it becomes a token creature. This is probably a reference to embalming, which was done to mummies in ancient Egypt. Exerting is when a creature can't untap on its controller's next untap step. Brick counter is a counter for certain artifacts, kind of like the ice counters for Thing in the Ice. -1/-1 counters are just like +1/+1 counters, but the opposite. The two new spells are gods. They function the same way they did in the Born of Gods pack in the past expansions. The gods have their own trials and monuments. and the trials do certain things depending on which card it is, and the monuments are artifacts. The final thing is a cartouche. It is an artifact that functions as an enchantment!

That's all for now in Magic the Gathering.  There will most likely be another article when Hour of Devastation comes out, stay tuned!

Why Venom Needs to be in the MCU by Michael B.

As some of you may know, Venom is an interesting and complex character in the Marvel Universe. With the new Venom movie coming out in October this year, I want to say a few things about the setting of the movie. First off, the movie is about the Eddie Brock Venom, who is a journalist-turned villain. He becomes a journalist and follows the story of Sin-eater, a serial killer in New York. Eddie is contacted by someone claiming to be the Sin-eater, and Eddie writes an exposé about the identity of the Sin-eater. However, Spiderman catches the real Sin-eater, and Eddie is fired for writing a story about a fake killer. Eddie becomes a sad person whose father and ex-wife have stopped talking to him, and he goes to a church to ask for forgiveness. At this time, Spiderman uses the church’s bell to remove his symbiote suit, and the symbiote bonds to Eddie, granting him his powers. This arc makes Eddie Brock into the villain known as Venom, who seeks to get revenge on Spiderman for catching the real Sin-eater.

In Ruben Fleischer’s Venom movie, the story is a little different. In the movie adaptation, Eddie Brock is investigating the Life Foundation, where they’ve captured a symbiote. Eddie investigates rumors that the symbiote is being used in human-symbiote experiments. Eddie gets attacked by a patient infected with the symbiote, and he gets the powers granted by the symbiote. This is more related to the Venom: Lethal Protector storyline in the comics, where Spiderman fights with Venom against other symbiotes. However, something is still wrong. Venom is a villain/anti-hero that came from Spiderman stories. Without Spiderman, there’s no Venom. This poses an issue since the movie is going to be outside the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe). This problem also occurred in movies like Logan and Deadpool, where they could never interact with the other (frankly, more successful) Marvel characters. Bottom line, Venom has always been based off Spiderman, so Venom with no Spiderman is simply an injustice to the fans that pay attention.