Boom! Boom! Boom! The drums ring through the stadium. The Mighty Buffalo Band performed their show “Among the Stars” this year at the UIL Marching Contest and earned a ranking in first division superior. Through blistering heat, cold winds, along with difficult weather, the band has continued to perform their show dozens of times in preparation for UIL.
This is the 29th consecutive year that Clemens has earned a first division ranking. The band boasts a proud reputation as an award winning marching band. With this year’s show now retired, some students are disappointed, especially after band favorites such as “A Night in the City” and “Among the Stars,” which was last year’s show.
“I feel like it’s well deserved, but I still feel like we could’ve gone above and beyond with our performance. There’s always something missing,” said Javier Mendez (12), Front section leader for ensemble. “The soloist was probably one of the only good things we had going for us.”
Last year’s show was a hit with the crowd and was beloved by the band. Clemens has a history of interesting and unique show music, and some felt that this year’s show did not hold up as well as shows in the past. Themes in the past have included New York City, clocks, and outerspace, while this year’s theme was the ocean. Major points of criticism have been boring music and themes, haphazardly written drill movements, and an overall lack of exciting moments. The movements of the show are also generally slower and mellower than last year’s performance, which may contribute to some band members’ thoughts. As for the drill, marching in this show has led to students being hit by props and flags from color guard.
“[Our best show was] ‘A Night in the City’ because of all the jazz elements in it and how successful it was,” Mitchell Mollicone (12), the section leader for the trumpet section, said. “I think the music [this year] was definitely more bland.”
Despite this year’s show being lackluster to some people, the band is prepping for more music and performances. In December, the band will perform its Christmas concert; in February, individual students and groups will perform in the UIL Solo and Ensemble Contest; in April, the band will perform in the UIL Concert and Sight Reading Contest; and in May, they will perform their spring concert. Already, the band directors are planning next year’s show, and students are hopeful that it will be stronger, better, and more exciting. Students are hoping for a more complex show, with bigger hits, stronger melodies, and better designed drill.
“It was solid, we did the best we could with what we had, and we really came together as best we could,” Kate Kampman said. “[There will be] more difficult show material, I hope. And a better dedication.”
The Samuel Clemens concert bands will perform the Christmas concert on Thursday, December 6th.
~Crayton Buchanan- Staff Writer
It was a rainy night late in a small town in Arizona. As an average teenager staying out late and not making the best choices is a thing most expected, but that night things were taken a bit too far. A group of friends came up with the idea of drag racing. The boy was asked to participate multiple times, but he kept declining the suggestion, his conscious was telling him it was not a good idea.
The other friends continued pressuring until it got the best of him. The nervous teen boy sat anxiously in the driver’s seat with sweaty palms. Engines were started and before he could blink the gas was pushed and off he went at top speeds soaring across the slick pavement. Before the boy knew, it everything froze as the two vehicles collided with such force that both drivers were instantly killed all because of peer pressure taking over. Most people would call them naive teens not realizing how much of an affect it is taking over society.
Peer pressure has been an ignored problem in this day and age. Most people don’t realize how easy it is for people to give in. It can happen in so many forms and any time. It can be from a friend saying to steal someones candy to someone convincing a peer to drink at a party, even though they know it’s not the right thing to do they do it anyways hoping to fit in and become well liked. Statistics show that 38 percent of individuals between the ages 15 and 24 say they have been pressured to drink alcohol, 32 percent reported being pressured into intimacy, 27 percent reported being pressured to do drugs, and 24 percent reported being pressured to smoke cigarettes. A lot of different people can be influenced to the unnoticed problem.
“I think it could come from friends, most of them could be toxic people and you might not even notice that”, Ashley Rodriguez (9) said. Many people give in to peer pressure from there friends because they fear appearing “uncool”. If they fall into peer pressure, they have to convince themselves that they are making the right decision. However, it is up to the individual being pressure weather or not they will give in.
Peer pressure is found to be more common in teenagers. For most people when they were young their parents choose who they hung out with but as they grow up into your teen life they began to choose their own friends. It All depends on the friend group you choose. As many know e-cigarettes has become a worldwide epidemic. Many teenagers share how they were pressured into trying e-cigarettes out from other friends. Pressure is known to be one of the main causes into people trying it and passing the idea down to others. The e-cigarettes are resulting into deaths and many illnesses for teens.
“It can be hard to say no even though you want to because other people are doing it,” Morgan Ossman (9) said.
Being a teenager can be hard and on top of it being pressured for things can be hard to handle and say no too. For a teenager resisting is the key thing. At many times the peer pressure can become so overwhelming even if its negative and self harming. “ Peer Pressure can be so powerful even if you don’t want to do it,” said Madison Lagasse (9).
Equality: one of the most desired concepts of today, yet it is commonly made apparent that there is a lack. Minorities face prejudice daily in American society, but understanding these inequalities can help to level social hierarchy. These injustices cause individuals to have trials and tribulations in their daily life.
However, according to CNN, the populations of minorities and majorities will switch by 2050. There’s evidence of this phenomenon occurring in Houston as the majority became the minority, for the white population is now less than the African American population. Despite this, discrimination still exists among towns, suburbs, and cities alike.
“Minorities nowadays face discrimination and often have no one to rant their issues to today,” Anayah Armand (9) said. “The school systems do little to aid those individuals.”
Despite these interviewed students sharing common situations and going through the same difficulties, they do not completely fall in line with each other. Resio and Armand believe the staff and faculty does not have enough aid for members of minorities, while Freshmen Emma Sanchez believes the school is doing enough to help them.
“Everyone should stop being so concerned with people's race and stop whining over it. People are caring because you care so much,” Emma Sanchez (9), a first generation Mexican-American, said.
The lack of unity due to racial, sexual and religious affiliations is made apparent each and every day. If this cycle continues, future generations won't be able to see people for what they truly are.
“I constantly worry about how society will change in the future.I think the world will become more opinionated about how they treat others, and it makes me wonder what will happen to minorities,” Resio said.
~Seth Pitman -Staff Writer
Everyone has a mask. One may make it look like they are always happy and do not have any problems. However, in real life, they are struggling with different kinds of problems that no one could even imagine. Every person has some way of dealing with their demons.
Every person deals with their demons in different sorts of ways. For some, these problems can be controlled and taken care of easily, but for others they can also be very violent and can result in serious injury.
A way to deal with bad feelings or moods is to talk to someone that you are comfortable with. Some of these people may be people that you never suspected to be comfortable with, like teachers.
“Ms. Grant is the best teacher at Clemens [to talk to]. She’s the best,” Kevin Lopez (11) said.
Another way to deal with bad moods is to talk to the people you love the most, your family. Family is most likely the most trusted and easiest people to talk to about feelings and life in general.
“My dad [is the best person in my family to talk to],” Jocelyn Balderama (10) said, “ He’s just there to talk to, he gives me good advice, and he won’t get mad at anything.”
Sometimes all of your family members can support through these hard times in life.
“My family has supported me with events like track and other activities,” Lopez said.
There are others that you can talk to about feelings that may not be family, but act like they are family; your friends. “My friend Diane because she’s so easy to talk to and she understands,” Josh Veliz (9) said.
These friends may have a good laugh with and at you, but are easy to talk to and have a different understanding in tough times.
“Seth [is my best friend to talk to] because I tell him literally everything and I don’t hold back at all.” Balderama says.
Others think that there are ways to deal with these demons by dealing with them head on. “I listen to music while I think about [my mood swings],” Veliz said. "It’s not the most productive way for most, but it works for some students.
~Augustine Perez -Staff Writer
It’s Tuesday night. July 23. 7:30 p.m.
An explosively loud sound roars from the main room of a San Antonio pool house. Sweat and electricity fly. Heads and limbs rock. The first live-audience performance for hardcore band End Means.
One month later, four out of five of the band members will fill the stiff plastic chairs of a classroom. Each day they wait to perform again.
Although their first show was quite recent, the project launched over a year ago by seniors Canyon Tillman and Hunter Caballero, by whim.
“[The first band I was in] was picking up steam, and then we just kind of dropped off,” Tillman said. “After that I met Hunter. We became really good friends. And then we were like, ‘Aye, let’s start a band.’ So we did.”
The project expanded last year, when sophomore Sean McFalls contacted Caballero and secured his spot as a guitarist. A few months later, senior Alec Behun joined as a rhythm guitarist. In October, Anzio Caballero, Hunter’s older brother, was recruited to play drums. With these roles filled, Tillman was left to do vocals and Caballero to play bass guitar.
McFalls is the only member to seek formal lessons for his instrument, and has been doing so for three years. The other bandmates can say they learned from years of practice: Caballero picked up his first guitar when he was eight and Tillman has created music since eighth grade.
Today, these talents are exercised every Friday evening, when they rehearse and songwrite. Their music-creation process is layered, allowing for input from each member.
“Sean will come up with a guitar riff, and we’ll just build off of it and add drums,” Tillman said. “The last thing we usually add is vocals and lyrics.”
End Means released their first music for streaming—A four-track EP titled “Summer Hate Tapes”—on July 26 of this year on Bandcamp.
Described as heavy and violent, their sound is inspired by artists ranging from Knocked Loose to Xibalba.
Behun summarized the emotions they wish to evoke with their music in one word: “Joy.”
This goal has been realized: At shows, listeners are seen smiling or dancing hysterically. End Means is able to connect to their audience through their music’s harsh noise and unlying message about mental health, personal conflicts, and loneliness.
Their lyrics are statements of protest, observations of both personal and societal problems. (“Money breeds pigs. Pigs bring filth. Filth brings disease. We are immersed in our own greed.”)
Unsurprisingly, their music has inspired physical outbursts of rage.
“Some guy kept hitting himself in the face and made himself bleed and there was just blood everywhere,” Tillman recalled about a recent show. “I was like, ‘Man, that guy needs to calm down.’”
One piece of music, constructed in McFalls’ living room, is favored among the band and their listeners.
“We have a song called ‘Regrets/Feedback’. I think I can speak for all of the other members that that’s kind of our favorite song to play live because we get the most energy back from the crowd,” Tillman said. “It’s pretty nice to see people react that way.”
Over time, each member has grown comfortable performing in front of audiences. Today they perform about every three weeks, most often at Twin Sisters Cantina, a venue in South San Antonio. Gigs are landed via Instagram DM’s. Before a show, they rehearse for an hour, load all of their equipment into a car, and mentally prepare themselves for what’s to come.
Several members can recall how they felt during their very first show, and how it’s since changed.
“The first show was nerve-wracking,” Caballero said. “But eventually you get used to it. You get used to people watching you play and yell and act kind of goofy.”
Their 15 to 20 minute shows are hot and exhausting—like finishing a marathon. After each performance, End Means refuels by stopping at McDonalds or Mama Margie’s. Once they were commissioned $10 each. But mostly they make money off of merchandise. Performing regularly has proven to be an eye-opening, surreal experience.
“Most of the time I forget [I’m performing]. I’m like, ‘Oh, I’m playing right now!,’” Tillman said. “I really enjoy it.”
From the beginning, most members’ parents approved of their musical pursuits. McFalls’ parents even avidly supported his band, and made appearances at shows.
One member—unsure of how his parents will react—refuses to share the fact that he plays in an aggressive punk rock band on the weekends.
“My parents don’t know that I’m in a band. I just tell them I’m going to go hang out with Hunter,” Behun said. “I don’t know if I can explain to my mom what hardcore music is.”
Even with parental approval, End Means has faced obstacles to play. Several times they’ve missed opportunities to perform because of the long school days. But balancing music and school doesn’t seem to be a problem.
“There’s really not much to balance. I’m in all dual-credit classes, and we don’t have much work,” Tillman said. “Every Friday we can hang out and jam.”
This freedom has allowed them to contribute to the hardcore music scene, one that is constantly evolving. Following a period of popularity in the 1990s and early 2000s, the genre dwindled. Recently, it has resurged. However, one thing will remain the same: the genre’s strong sense of community.
“I like the way that you can express yourself well and the way people treat each other in this scene of music,” McFalls said. “It’s very supportive.”
Currently, End Means is working on recording a new demo. They hope to be signed to Closed Casket or another a record label in the next couple of years. They also want to earn enough recognition to play at This Is Hardcore, a music festival featuring the biggest names in aggressive punk rock.
End Means will play their next show on November 23.
~Ally Lozano- Copy Editor
~Ella Malone- Staff Writer
The Houston Astros are a professional baseball team based in Houston, Texas. They compete in the Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League (AL) West division. They moved to the division in 2013 after spending their first 51 seasons in the National League (NL). The Astros have played their home games at Minute Maid Park since 2000.
In The 115th edition of the World Series, it was a best-of-seven playoff played between the American League champion Houston Astros and the National League champion Washington Nationals. The series was played from October 22 to October 30.
In the beginning of the World Series, the Astros were on a roll, but towards the end, The Washington Nationals caught up, and gained a win.
“The Astros were doing very good in the beginning of the World Series, but then they had a drastic turn-around, and lost,” Bailey Pauly (09) said.
In the end, the winner is always the one who does the best under pressure.
“They started off really good, but they could have done better in the end, and if they did, they definitely would have took home a dub,” Kaely Cisco (09) said.
Although they lost this year, the Houston team will have to work harder next season to make it to the World Series again. Winning may take a change in the coaching staff or players’ positions. The world will see what tactical moves they decide.
~Zoe Dean- Staff Writer
For the next two weeks, Unified Sports will be selling $1 friendship bracelets in the Cafeteria that have been made by the students.
“Last year when we started the Unified Sports program we knew that we needed to raise money,” Mrs. Woods said.
Mrs. Woods and Coach Tollison have decided that the best way to raise money is by a fundraiser that all the students can be apart of. They came up with the idea of friendship bracelets because it was something that kids with small motor skills could do.
It gives them a sense of happiness knowing that people want to buy their bands.
“It’s a huge sense of pride that they’ve made something someone wants to buy,” Mrs. Woods said.
The money that is raised will be put back into the program. It all goes to new equipment the program needs to keep it running. Along with raising money, they raise the spirits of the kids who have put so much love and care into making these bracelets.
~Ryleigh McCright- Staff Writer
In the midst of screaming fans and the KSAT 12 camera crew, the Lady Buffs have accomplished the unthinkable: a back-to-back district championship over Canyon. With an undefeated record, these girls are entering bi-district playoffs with unmatched tenacity.
But these mighty women are just getting started.
Ranked 53rd in the nation as of October 2019, the girls will go into the playoffs with confidence at an all time high under the direction of Coach Robyn Wunderlich-Ellis.
“Going into the playoffs, everyone feels so comfortable with one another,” Shelby O'neal (12), the 6 '2 blocker and All-American, said. “The team environment this year is stronger than ever.”
This season, practices have been increasingly aggressive to prepare against Hays and Reagan, two wins needed to secure the bi-district championship
“I feel like these game-like practices have prepared us for tough games against Canyon and New Braunfels, who we ended up sweeping at home,” O’Neal said.
Four seniors have already committed to top-tier colleges. Lillie Hill, who has over 1500 career digs, plans to play at East Texas Baptist University, alongside Ashley Breu at Trinity University, O’Neal at the University of Arizona, and Cassidy Steadman at Texas Woman's University. Despite many team members finishing up their Clemens career, faith in both each other and the remainder of the season prevails.
“Our ability to work together is what makes us win,” Rylee Thomas (12) said. “We’ve bonded so much this season, especially during bus rides. I can’t wait to see what else is in store for us.”
~Taylor Trapp- Online Editor-in-Chief
Starting October 28th and ending November 1st, students and teachers participated in Red Ribbon Week to show school spirit and to also show drug, alcohol, tobacco and violence prevention awareness.
“It was fun seeing a lot of people doing the most and just representing the topic of the day,” Jayda Reece said.
Red Ribbon Week was created because of the death of a DEA agent and parents got angry. In order to raise awareness to the killing and destruction of drugs in the United States people started wearing red ribbons as a commitment.
“I think it's just fun for the students just to get us motivated to come to school but I don’t think teens really listen and pay attention to the point that it’s supposed to raise awareness for drug use and things like that so I don’t really think it teaches them anything,” Reece said.
The purpose of red ribbon week is to take a stand against alcohol, tobacco and illegal drugs. It may be effective for some schools or students but it may not be for others. Another way it could be more effective is if the parents also get involved and talk to their child or children about illegal drug use and what it could do to you.
~Janine Alapag- Staff Writer
Going into the 2019-2020 NBA season, the San Antonio Spurs look as though this upcoming season is going to be a rebuilding year after acquiring forward DeMarre Carroll, rookie forward Luka Saminic, rookie guard Keldon Johnson, and forward Trey Lyles.
Even though the team is led by veterans LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMar DeRozan, and Rudy Gay, the team is overall young with the starting point guard being Dejounte Murray and the occasional starter Jakob Poetl. The new and improved Spurs team has started off the season with a 3-0 record after playing the New York Knicks, Washington Wizards, and the Portland Trail Blazers.
“After going 3-0 to start out the season, I have a feeling we can go to the NBA finals after sweeping the Lakers or the Clippers,” Jared Hinojosa (12) said.
The young star, Dejounte Murray has averaged 14.7 points, 8.3 rebounds, 6 assists, 2.0 steals, and 0.7 blocks. After missing an entire season due to an injury last season, Murray has shown out in his much anticipated return to the starting lineup. Murray was just recently signed to a four year, 64 million dollar extension.
“We really felt the absence of Dejounte last year, his defense and ability to attack the basket is a necessity to the starting 5. I am really glad he’s back and doing really well,” Sawyer Wolston (12) said.
The Spurs were expected to miss the play-offs this year after more than 20 years of consistently making the play-offs. Now the team is expected to not only make the play-offs, but also win their division.
~Nick McDonald- Photo Editor