‘Chalice of the Gods’, let’s talk about it

By: Abisola Dosunmu

On October 18, 2022, Rick Riordan posted on his blog the new book he’s planning on releasing sometime next year, ‘Chalice of the Gods’. The book plans on following the original trio (for the first time since 2010) from Percy’s POV, and Percy’s quest to get into college. This plot only makes sense when Rick Riordan writes it.

As many PJO fans know,  there’s an upcoming live action adaptation to the Percy Jackson series (featuring Walker Scobell as Percy, Leah Jeffries as Annabeth, and Aryan Simhadri as Grover). This book release is a direct tie to that, as Rick himself admitted to.

Many readers have varying opinions about this new book. Some fans are excited about this new book. PJO fan always-reading-fantasy wrote: I’m so glad we’re getting another book from Percy’s point of view because I’ve really missed seeing the random things that go through his head sometimes lol.

Some are more skeptical about it. Another PJO fan olympusrox wrote: Riordan. I love you. But please stop blasting out books in the pjo universe unless it’s either a continuation of the Daughter of the Deep book, a short mcga novel or a short kane chronicles novel. Stop putting Percy in unnecessary situations. We have fan fiction for that.

Some fans would claim it’s a publicity grab, and they would be right as Rick himself confirmed it. Over a decade later, however, he writes, I figured such a book would not only be fun to write once again — it would promote the show and vice versa. Everybody would win!  He finished on his blog with news Chalice will be coming out shortly before the PJO adaptation starts.

This isn’t the only book Rick plans on releasing. This spring, The Sun and the Star’, a Nico di Angelo and Will Solace novella, will be released.

I get where a lot of fans come from with being mad about the “publicity grab” and that’s valid, but I don’t think it’s that bad. I mean, it happens a lot in the media when there’s an on screen adaptation about to be released, and it’s a good idea since it catches the attention of the fans and makes them more excited to watch the show. Rick isn’t the first to do it. He won’t be the last.

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How many conspiracy theories are rooted in anti-semitism

By: Irene Cohen

Links image credit: A screenshot from the Russian Channel 1 segment depicting the Rothschilds as a sow, and Israel, the CIA, MI6, ISIS, Al-Qaeda, and Boko Haram as nursing piglets. (Screenshot/MEMRI-TV). Image taken from: https://www.timesofisrael.com/nearly-200-years-of-anti-semitic-conspiracies-continue-to-cloud-rothschilds/

Anti-semitic hate crimes have almost tripled since 2015 after being on the decline for 15 years up until 2016. Even though these anti-semitic conspiracies have been around for hundreds of years, the hate being millenia old, something has popularized them so much, so the Jews in America, and all over the world, are being directly affected by this rhetoric.

The most prevalent trope among these conspiracies are that a tiny portion of the population, Jews, run the world. Antisemites believe that Jews are controlling the media, economy, government, and politics overall. In broad strokes, they believe Jewish people have gained money by being greedy and only interacting/doing business with other Jews. A large example of this is the Rothschild conspiracy. This conspiracy says that the wealthy Rothschild family, and Ashkenazi banking family, runs the global economy and manipulates politics into whatever they want it to be.

These conspiracies have not only originated in modern day times. In the 14th century, the conspiracy of Jewish people poisoning water wells to cause the Black Death was spread. Jewish people are often blamed for world tragedies as a scapegoat.

A phrase that is often used when describing this so called power that Jews have over the world is “hidden hand”. This is a phrase that more or less states that Jewish people are the puppetmasters of world events. This is one of the main rhetorics that allowed the Nazi party to take control of Germany. Antisemites believe that Jewish people are above them in a social/economic place in the world, yet they also believe them to be subhuman. This attitude allows them to think they are being righteous when punching down on Jewish people.

Be careful when looking into conspiracy theories. It’s easier to fall down that rabbit-hole of anti-semitism than you think.

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HYBE: New girl group NewJeans

By: Stephanie Caballero Benitez

K-pop, is a music genre that has gained lots of attention and popularity. In this article I will be discussing the newest group of HYBE: NewJeans. 

Picture Credits: ‘HYBE’ NewJeans

HYBE is currently one of the biggest ruling companies in the K-pop industry. HYBE was founded in 2005 by the current chairman Bang Si-Hyuk. HYBE, back then known as “Big Hit Entertainment” was a very unsuccessful company. The company only started gaining popularity in the year 2015 with their K-pop group BTS which is a worldwide known boy group. Since then the company has taken many talented people and turned them into what are called “K-pop group Idols”. 

The group NewJeans debuted on July 22, 2022. This girl group began their pre-debut around October of the year 2019. After 3 years of training, HYBE began to announce the debut of their new group. Their debut song “Attention”, for the album ‘New Jeans’, came out on the same day as their debut, July 22. 

The song “Attention” gained popularity quickly just as the group did. Some people believe that this is because of the company they are under. Others believe that they have talent and gained their platform by their own talent. With people stating their opinions online on the group it had begun to gain more popularity.

Later on, more songs for their debut album ‘New Jeans’ came out. It consisted of 4 songs: 

  • Attention
  • Hype boy
  • Cookie
  • Hurt 
Picture Credits: ‘HYBE’ NewJeans

Out of all of the songs in the album “Hybe Boy” and “Attention” have done the best as they were used by K-pop fans on ‘Tik Tok’ which made them well known. Their songs made it to the Billboard Global chart with “Attention” at No. 82 and “Hype Boy” at No. 116. 

NewJeans consists of 5 members: Minji, Hanni, Danielle, Haerin, and Hyein. This group is made out of girls with a wide range of age, with their youngest member being 14 and their oldest 18. 

Just as other K-pop groups, NewJeans sold a physical album. Theirs was a little different as it didn’t come in a box but instead in a bag that came in colors red, white, and black. Their album bag consists of the bag, a pin-up book, a CD, and photo cards. 

Overall, this girl group has done very well in the K-pop industry considering their age and how short of time their pre-debut was.

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Overview of the Highland Park Volleyball season

By: Grace Blumer-LaMotte

Image taken from: HPSH Volleyball Instagram

The Highland Park volleyball season started on August 22nd, 2022. It continued until October 18th, 2022, when they lost in the semi-finals against Two Rivers High School. 

Varsity consisted of these players: Grace Blumer-LaMotte (Senior, #10), Grace Adrian (Senior #12), Sunshine Vang (Senior #3)), Bella Kottke (Senior #18), Ayana Bougie (Senior #13), Leila Hagedorn (Senior #27), Kate Reubish (Junior #11), Alyssa Ramos (Junior #2), Molly Hanley (Junior #9), Ella Johnson (Junior 1), Mary Koch (Sophomore #14), Ella Sutherland (Sophomore #6). Varsity is coached by Sonje Odegard (Head).

The Two Rivers game was the end of the great season that Highland had. They lost the match 3-1. 

Highland went the season with 14 wins and 11 losses. 

Team Attack Stats: Highland got a combined total of 722 kills throughout the whole season. They had 432 attack errors, 2,330 total attack attempts, hit a .124 hitting percentage, and had 6.4 kills per set.

Team Serve Stats: Highland had a total of 217 service aces, 129 service errors, 1.9 service aces per set, and a .917 service percentage.

Team Defensive Stats: Highland got a combined total of 1,121 digs, averaging 9.9 digs per set.

General Team Stats: Highland had 12 ball-handling errors and played 113 sets.

Bella Kottke, the starting middle hitter, had a total of 233 kills this year, the highest number of kills on the team. Kottke also had 81 attack errors. She hit a .303 attack percentage and averaged 3.1 kills per set. She also had 21 service aces.

Kate Reubish, a right-side hitter, had a total of 130 kills this year, 104 attack errors, a .059 hitting percentage, and averaged 1.8 kills her set. She also had 17 service aces.

Molly Hanley, a right-side hitter, had a total of 121 kills this year, 104 attack errors, a .038 hitting percentage, and averaged 1.6 kills per set. She also had 41 service aces.

Mary Koch, another middle hitter, had a total of 95 kills this year, 48 attack errors, a .164 hitting percentage, and averaged 1.3 kills per set. She also had 3 service aces.

Ella Sutherland, an outside hitter, had a total of 59 kills this year, 43 attack errors, a .054 hitting percentage, and averaged 1.1 kills per set. She also had 3 service aces.

Ayana Bougie, the setter, had a total of 46 kills this year, 10 attack errors, a .228 hitting percentage, and averaged 0.6 kills per set. She also had 41 service aces.

Ella Johnson, another outside hitter, had a total of 27 kills this year, 31 attack errors, and averaged 1.0 kills per set.

Grace Adrian, another outside hitter, had a total of 8 kills this year, 6 attack errors, a .061 hitting percentage, and averaged 1.0 kills per set.

Leila Hagedorn, another right-side hitter, had a total of 3 kills this year, 5 attack errors, and averaged 0.4 kills per set.

Grace Blumer-LaMotte was unfortunately out for the season due to a season-ending injury to her shins.