Views of the stars

If you’ve ever picked up the morning paper, or scrolled around any number of lifestyle websites, you’ve probably come across your “daily horoscope.” Dependent on planetary movement, horoscopes are said to predict anything from your day-to-day areas of opportunity to your overarch- ing critical flaw (also known as your Lilith moon). Although the scientific merits of astrology — the study of celestial bodies used to develop horoscopes — are debatable, many people feel that it can be used to further our understanding of events in the natural world.

“I think the stars control a lot more than we know,” said Clara Ruth Logan, a Virgo and CHS junior. “If you find your birth chart, it’s crazy accurate.”

According to Cafe Astrology — the leading website for finding your birth chart — a birth chart goes beyond a horoscope, as it takes into account your exact time and place of birth to more accurately identify the effects of the celestial movements in your life.

I sat down with Diamond Blue, a CHS senior and self-professed astrology skeptic, to go over her birth chart for the first time.

“I wouldn’t say I know everything about astrology,” Blue said prior to the birth chart reading, “but I do know some things; I’m not the person to go to about it or anything.”

Blue’s birth chart reveals that, like Logan, her sun is in Virgo. On the surface, it may seem like this means that Blue and Logan share similar qualities, but that is not necessarily true. Because the two were born on different days, at different times, and in different locations, their birth charts — and according qualities — are unique.

The placement of her opposition sun, for example, indicates that Blue is likely to consider both sides of any given situation.

“That’s crazy,” Blue said, in response to this placement. “My mom was just getting on me about that the other day. She told me I’m always trying to argue—always trying to see the other side of something.”

Like Blue, CHS librarian Kara Watson — a Scorpio — is willing to recognize some value in astrology, despite fair skepticism.

“I think astrology is fun and interesting,” Watson says. “I used to read my horoscope when I was little, because my dad would leave the newspaper on the table.”

As far as the scientific support for astrology, Watson is not so convinced; “I don’t really believe in it,” she says.

She does, however, admit to seeing astrological effects here at CHS.

“When we have a full moon, I notice some interesting student behavior.”

Illustration by Ruby Handa

Battle of the Biscuits

Rise Biscuits and Donuts

Location: The location at Rise is the better of the two, with lots of parking all around it. It is right smack in the middle of Carrboro, so it’s an easy walk if you live nearby.

Price: Rise doughnuts are reasonably priced, and so is the coffee. The biscuits are more pricey at nearly $5 with toppings, but they are still very delicious.

Variety: At Rise, you have a variety of biscuits, doughnuts, coffee, “hashpuppies”, salads and even chicken strips.

Time: Rise is super fast for donuts, but you might have to wait at least five minutes for your biscuit, especially  if the restaurant is crowded.

Vibe: Rise is very cute and resembles a boutique city bakery. You can go inside and sit down, and there’s even a chalkboard to draw on in the back.

Overall: Rise Biscuits is a place to go to meet your friends and have a nice meal before work or school. If you want a really fluffy but generic biscuit, Rise is for you.

Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen

Location: Sunrise’s location is farther away from CHS than Rise is, but there’s usually less traffic. The only traffic is actually the line into the drivethrough. Sunrise is on the northern end of Franklin Street, so it is not too walkable from downtown. There is, however, a small parking lot on one side.

Price: Sunrise’s biscuits are less expensive than Rise, but only by a bit; a chicken biscuit is $4.29. Overall, they cost about 50 cents less than Rise’s.

Variety: At Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen, there are a variety of biscuits as well as coffee, great sweet tea, cinnamon rolls, hush-puppies, fries, grits, sandwiches, hot dogs, hamburgers and small break- fast platters.

Time: Sunrise is super quick as it is a drive-through, so you shouldn’t have to wait more than two minutes for your food, but the car line itself can take upward of ten minutes.

Vibe: There is something to love about a local kitchen that serves biscuits; it’s just plain Southern. It is a family-run kitchen, with both owners being born and raised in the South. It’s just like something you might see on TV.

Overall: Sunrise Kitchen is the place to go when you’re in your pajamas, on the go or just want to sit in the car with your friends and listen to music. If you are looking for a real Southern biscuit or meal, this is the place for you; they’re homemade and fluffy — one of the best I’ve ever had.

Darkest Hour Does Not Deserve the Limelight

Darkest Hour, the 2017 drama which follows Winston Churchill’s first weeks in office, won two Oscars Last night — Best Actor (Gary Oldman) and Best Makeup. It was nominated for four more awards, including Best Picture. I enjoyed the movie alright, but in my opinion, Darkest Hour was overrated.  

As my friend pointed out to me after the final scene, Darkest Hour is a war movie without the fighting — a concept I can stand behind, in theory. Yet at points the film was too slow, and as someone who likes slow movies that’s saying a lot.

There were only two conflicts throughout the entire two hours: who should succeed Chamberlain as Prime Minister and whether or not Great Britain should engage in peace talks with the Nazis. This sounds fine, until you realize every scene is the same argument played out between different characters in different locations.

Darkest Hour also contains quite a few WWII cliches: the young, bright typist whose brother is killed in the war; generals constantly huddled in the War Rooms around a giant map with colorful tacks on it; Winston Churchill reading important documents in the bathtub or eating an absurdly large breakfast; Parliament dissolving into yelling matches out of frustration, etc. Alone none of these is problematic, but in order for a film about WWII to receive such critical acclaim, I thought it would be a little more unique.

One thing that did make Darkest Hour stand out from similar films was its cinematography. Much of the movie was shot and edited to be deliberately beautiful, with its clean lines and calculated color scheme, unlike most historical films I’ve seen. However, personally the artistry trivialized the brutal, inhumane war happening off camera. While it was lovely to watch aesthetically, to me Darkest Hour romanticized the war as puzzle for Churchill to solve rather than recognizing the sheer loss of life it meant for most Brits not in his position of authority.

Finally, imagine my disappointment when I learned that the most powerful scene in the movie — the one where Churchill rides the Underground and talks to Londoners about whether to negotiate with the Nazis — never actually happened! Did I mention this is the climax of the story?

Overall, Darkest Hour was fine, and I’m sure historical junkies enjoyed it more than I did. But its lack of excitement, creativity and tact left me wanting so much more.

Creatures of Carrboro

The JagWire traveled around the school asking different students these two questions: What is on your mind lately? What helps assuage your worries? These are their answers.

Jack Knowles, Freshman:

“Honestly, I’m mainly worried about school work and stuff; [there are a lot of] super tight deadlines because of snow days. What helps me is just relaxing or taking a quick nap, especially when my workload is excessive.”

Vilja Saether, Junior:

“Is it bad to say Trump? Him and the North Korean leader; we all die if they start a nuclear war, and if they want to start a war, they will also die themselves. Maybe it’s because the US is a main power country, so its actions affect the whole world, not just the US as a country. Maybe we have other, smarter leaders in the world that can help us and that now after all of history we know it won’t lead to anything. I could also say quizzes and tests, but I only have to pass so it’s OK, I don’t worry as much about them.”

Aadit Nerkar, Junior:

“Well I worry about work, and I worry about the big issues going around in the world; following the news and hearing all the big things. It’s like you’re [always] wondering, ‘What does this mean?’ and ‘Where are we gonna end up?’ and ‘Why is this happening?’”

Sophie Therber, Senior:

“I guess the biggest thing recently is the whole process of going to college because I’ve been accepted to a few places, but I still don’t know exactly where I’m going to go or what I’m going to do. If I spend too much time thinking about it, I’ll drive myself to the ground, so it’s good to focus on other things.”

Joe Zhang, Senior:

“I worry about Nebraska football; I don’t know.”

Photos by Chelsea Ramsey

Black Panther: A Look Back at the Year’s Impressive Movies

Black Panther breaks the boundaries of a typical comic book movie to become a seminal entry in the Marvel universe. The movie takes place in Wakanda, a country that brands itself as third world but is actually technologically advanced compared to other nations due to its possession of vibranium — the strongest metal on Earth — which helps to power their city and technology. After his father dies, his son, T’Challa, returns back to Wakanda to serve as the country’s new leader. However, two factions within the country challenge the throne and T’Challa must team up with some unlikely allies to save Wakanda from entering a world war.

Wakanda has survived all these years under the appearance of being a poor country, but many characters, such as Na- kia, believe the country “is strong enough to help others and protect itself.”

In fact, this viewpoint is one of the main arguments of the villain, Erik “Killmonger” Stevens, played by Michael B. Jordan. After a difficult childhood — one of the most heartbreaking moments in the movie — Killmonger believes Wakanda should share its weapons with those suffering in the world so they can overthrow their repressive governments and invert the existing racial order. Killmonger is one of my favorite villains in recent Marvel movies. His motives, while vicious, are understandable especially once you know his backstory.

Not only does Black Panther have a mostly Black cast, but most of the film’s central characters are female. T’Challa is surrounded by various women including  his mother, who’s a guiding presence; his ex-lover Nakia, who brings out his heart; his sister, who is a tech genius and adds to the comedy of the movie; and finally his bodyguard, a striking character with crazy fighting skills.

Lastly, Black Panther is thought-provoking. It questions what it means to have pride in one’s country, especially if it is being ruled by someone destructive. In addition, it addresses current foreign policy concerns as some countries shift toward isolationism rather than globalism. Black Panther, while still packed with traditional action scenes, places emphasis on Black freedom and creativity and helps breaks the absence of Black actors in American movies. It is a powerful, vibrant movie that shines not only as an action film but as a significant one.

Get Out: A Look Back at the Year’s Impressive Movies

Get Out by far deserves the Oscar for best picture and best original screenplay.

The depth of the content in the movie is unbelievable. Get Out conveys the roots and concepts behind slavery while incorporating modern technology as it relates to police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement. The satirical film adds horror and comedy to a topic that many people are uncomfortable discussing: race.

In brief, Chris, the main character, and boyfriend of Rose, goes with her to her parents’ house for a weekend getaway. Coincidentally, it’s the same weekend that her family is hosting their annual get-together party with their closest friends. During this time, Chris begins to pick up on the personality and comments of her family and their friends that begin to make him question their intentions. He slowly discovers the “sunken place” and that his lovely girlfriend and his in-laws are not who he thought they were.

If you thought that synopsis was a cliffhanger, just watch the movie. You’ll be even more shook at the ending.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro Pizza Places: Reviewed

IP3

by Niya Fearrington

As teenagers, we are always looking for something fun and cheap to do with friends. My personal favorite is getting pizza. The best pizza restaurant is the famous Italian Pizzeria III, otherwise known as IP3.

Location: The restaurant is located on the west side of Franklin Street, so it’s easily accessible to most CHS stu-
dents.

Price: Being highschool students, most of us don’t have a steady income, so price is very important when deciding where to hang out. The prices at IP3 are very affordable, with two slices of cheese pizza and a drink costing only$5. What a steal!

Value: You might think, just two slices? However, the size of each slice is out of this world! One slice of pizza is bigger than my entire hand. Imagine… two ginormous slices of pizza, not to mention the fifteen topping options. All with endless refills of your favorite Pepsi products, lemonade or homemade sweet tea, and the small ice cubes seem to make the drink taste better, especially for all the ice chewers.

Variety: Now, don’t get attached to the pizza because this Italian pizzeria  offers way more than just that. They serve everything from illustrious Italian pasta dishes like manicotti to more American cuisine like cheeseburgers. Other options include a variety of sandwiches and salads to hold you over if you’re not too hungry.

Time: You will never have to wait more than ten minutes for lunch or twenty minutes for dinner on a busy day. As a senior, one of my favorite things to do is to call ahead and request my order. By the time I arrive my food is being packaged up. With a 50 minute lunch period, this gives IP3 an advantage over other local lunch spots.

Vibe: Great pizza and great prices mean nothing if the vibe is off. The walls at IP3 are plastered with photos of UNC alumni, aerial looks of Franklin Street and images from one of the most important nights of the year: the UNC v. Duke basketball game. This lets you know that you’ve set foot in a Chapel Hill favorite.

On both sides of the entrance two TVs constantly air athletic games, making it a great place for you and your family to enjoy dinner while watching your favorite sports team. On top of all this, the employees complete the experience. Brothers Angelo and Vincenzo Marrone have run IP3 since 1980, making the atmosphere like that of a true family.

Overall: IP3 is a place for the people. Hot pizza, loaded with cheese to perfection, at a reasonable price sounds too good to be true. And if you’re not in the mood for pizza, there’s a plethora of other food options. If you haven’t had an opportunity to eat at this wonderful spot, you should really stop by.

Pizzeria Mercato

by Lily Ervin

Price: The price for each pizza varies, from $13 to $17 for a whole pizza: a bit pricier than IP3. But if you go out with your friends, obviously you could split the cost. For a whole pizza, the price is pretty good, especially after you’ve tasted it.

Variety: Mercato has a nice variety for a pizza place, from pizzas to their salads, and drinks to desserts. If you are not in the mood for pizza, there are other options too. There is antipasti (the first course in an Italian meal), including pork belly and sausage and piatti, which is like lasagne. Unfortunately, you cannot purchase by the slice like at IP3, but you can  split one pizza between two people, so one slice at IP3 is about two slices at Mercato.

Mercato’s desserts are all so delicious and fancy. My personal favorite is the bodino, which is caramel and chocolate Italian
custard.

Vibe: Whether you’re walking in on a busy night or a chill afternoon, the vibe at Mercato is always fun. Going with friends or family, you’ll always feel welcome. The wait staff is super nice and friendly, typically what you see in the town of Carrboro. If you sit at the bar, you can watch and listen to the chefs making the pizzas in the ovens behind the counter. Or, sit by the window to see the people of Carrboro while enjoying your meal.

Wait time: Overall, the wait time is fairly short. During the day, Mercato is not as busy as at night, and the wait time is very short. At night, the restaurant is more crowded; it’s the only specialty pizza place in Carrboro, and it’s really good. But for a busy place, you will not have to wait longer than 25 minutes in my expe rience. You can always get a drink while you wait and stand or sit outside on a nice night.

Overall presentation: At Mercato, everything’s meant to impress. Right away your table gets a large glass pitcher of water, which is something I have always liked because I like to serve myself water when I need to.

Their menu is easy to read and not too long, so you don’t have to decide between so many choices. They have roughly ten choices of pizzas, and you could always add on more toppings. I am always very content with how my pizza looks and tastes. All the pizzas are adorned with toppings to make them look like a masterpiece, and the flavors match the presentation.

 

Student Spotlight: Saige Elms and Jasmine Godfrey, Visual Artists

Q: How long have you been drawing?
Elms: “Well, in general, maybe since preschool.”

Godfrey: “I’ve been drawing since I was little. I was always the kid every teacher thought was special because I was the kid that would draw the fingers on the hands instead of just a stick. So they were like ‘wow she has potential; look at her, she’s drawing extra lines,’ and then I just kept drawing.”

Q: Describe your art style.

Elms: “It varies, depending on what I work on and the vision I have in my head, although usually it turns out really cartoony even if I try to make it realistic.”

Godfrey: “It’s sort of cartoon realism. It’s not really cartoony or anime but it’s not super hyper-realistic. It’s sort of somewhere in between, it’s my own little thing.”

Q: What’s your favorite medium?

Elms: “I mean, I usually just do sketches, so maybe pencil, but for Instagram digital. Doing an art piece that turns out decently is the most fun. I feel like that’s the thing with most artists.”

Godfrey: “Pencil.”

Q: Who inspires you?

Elms: “When I was younger, Cartoon Network, mostly The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy. That turned into Tim Burton, and now I think it’s probably just creepy things in general, like old fairy tales.”

Godfrey: “I don’t have an answer to that…”

Q: Do you want to pursue a profession in artistry?

Elms: “I want to either get into video game character design or animation design, like working on storyboards and stuff, but either or.”

Godfrey: “I haven’t really decided yet, but I think the closest thing I have right now is a tattoo artist because I’ve been drawing on people a lot in class lately, and they’ll be like, ‘Wow, this is really cool! I want this as a tattoo,’ and I’m like yeah, I’d be a tattoo artist. It would be really fun to make art that will live on through someone else as long they’re
alive.

Jasmine Godfrey (left) and Saige Elms (right). Photos by Ryx Zan

Addams Family Fun

The spring musical, The Addams Family, will premiere April 12, 2018 in Carrboro High’s auditorium. The show features a gothic American family and their daughter’s attempts at love. The cast will feature Zachary Klenke as Gomez, Millie McGuire as Morticia, and Ally Millar as Wednesday, with Lilly Tipton as stage manager. The musical will also feature perfor- mances from the pit orchestra.

The choice of each year’s show is based on past and future shows, as well as student interests. Direc- tor Brett Stegall chose The Addams Family for its contemporary style and the challenge it poses to the actors, musicians and technicians.

The Addams Family fit our theme of ‘Monster of a Season’ and paired nicely with our fall show, She Kills Monsters,” said Stegall, who is also the theatre teacher at Carrboro High.

Led for the first time by Casey Spillman, the pit orchestra will perform songs from the pit under the stage. The musicians will rely on Spillman for cues so that the orchestra and actors are in sync. Kay Johnson, the chorus and orchestra teacher, will also aid the pit from the house, making sure that the orchestra complements the singers.

Johnson depicted the three different worlds a musical creates: the actors on stage, the tech crews behind the scenes and the musicians working in the pit. Although they operate separately, each world is equally important as the other two, and all three must come together in order to make sure the production happens.

The musical features a variety of jokes and songs ranging from goofy to sophisticated. A favorite song of Johnson’s, “Pulled,” offers a good example. To those unfamiliar with the story, it sounds like a traditional love song in which a girl is torn between two lovers. As it turns out, the girl is torturing her brother and, quite literally, pulling him in a new direction.

“It’s really a charming story about love of people and love of people who are different than you might be, and coming to value them for what’s good about them. It’s told in this crazy, outrageous story,” said Johnson about the musical.

The show will run from April 12 through 14 at 7:30 pm. Tickets go on sale for $5 for students, $10 for adults and are free for faculty and staff.

The best (and worst) romantic movies of 2017

Beauty and the Beast

March

3/5

The remake of Beauty and the Beast showcases lovely songs and a magical setting. That being said, I did not enjoy much else about this movie. Call me crazy, but I think it’s plain weird that Belle (played by Emma Watson) falls in love with the man — animal? — who kidnaps her father and then holds her hostage in exchange for his release. Stockholm Syndrome, much? If you liked the original Beauty and the Beast you’ll probably like this film too. It’s just not my singing cup of tea.

The Big Sick

June

5/5  

The Big Sick is a rom-com inspired by a true story, and it was written by its two main characters! Kumail Nanjiani plays himself as he falls in love with his wife, Emily Gordon. Nanjiani and Gordon’s relationship is strained by Nanjiani’s family’s desire for him to have an arranged marriage, and further complicated when Gordon is suddenly hospitalized and put into a medically-induced coma. Overall, The Big Sick strikes a perfect balance between funny and poignant.

Home Again

September

2/5

This movie should be renamed Everybody is in Love with Alice, and who can blame them? Reese Witherspoon plays Alice, a recently-single mom with the heart and face of an angel. Alice, 40, falls for 27-year-old aspiring director Harry while he and his other 20-something friends crash in her guest house. It’s about as awkward as it sounds. Besides lacking a believable storyline, Home Again glosses over the complications of divorce. The film also includes a pointless conflict between Harry and his friends that left me questioning the maturity of the group: the opposite of the film’s intent.  

The Mountain Between Us  

October

1/5

Yikes. Who knew a movie could be so depressing yet so cheesy? The Mountain Between Us takes the “damsel in distress” trope to new heights — literally and figuratively. Alex Martin (Kate Winslet) and Ben Bass (Idris Elba) meet for the first time when their commuter plane crash-lands in the Rocky Mountains. They spend the course of the movie slowly hiking to safety, and I guess falling in love. In reality, The Mountain Between Us consists mostly of scenes of Alex shivering by a fire and Ben — a practicing neurosurgeon — feeding her soup or tending to her wounds. Winslet and Elba did their best, but they couldn’t save a movie with a strange plot and an even more awkward script.

Breathe  

October

5/5

I don’t often cry at movies, but Breathe is the definition of a tear-jerker. It follow the true story of Robin Cavendish (Andrew Garfield), a 28-year-old British man paralyzed from the neck down by polio in the mid 1960s. Instead of spending his life in a hospital, Robin chooses to live at home with his family eventually travel the world, largely thanks to help from his wife Diana (Claire Foy). Foy and Garfield are both marvelous, and Breathe is a bitter-sweet tale about the beauty and fragility of life.

 

Call Me by Your Name

November

5/5

If like slow movies, you’ll love Call Me by Your Name. Set in an idyllic town in the north of Italy, the movie follows the first love of 17 year-old Elio Perlman. Though I found Elio’s love interest Oliver (Armie Hammer) a little antagonistic, the story is does a great job detailing Elio’s pain and joy as he come to terms with his sexuality and learns more about his place in the world.