Wind Ensemble enchants audience

By Lauren Jones Audience members sat eagerly as they waited for the Wind Ensemble to take the stage in Walton Chapel Oct. 24. At 7:30 p.m., members walked onto the stage, sat in their seats and waited for the cue from conductor Nils Landsberg. With a wave of his baton, Landsberg signaled the ensemble to play the first notes of a piece titled “Resonances I.” The chapel was quickly filled with a melodious sound generated by trumpets, clarinets, trombones, flutes, saxophones and many other instruments. Audience members were moved by the piece’s long, harmonious notes that layered deep, solid bass with bright, warm trumpets. At the end of the piece, the audience cheered with approval and knew that the rest of the concert would be filled with music that was just as beautiful as the opening piece. The ensemble’s second piece, “Bayou Breakdown,” was a reflection of the music of New Orleans. Its lively beat and jazzy flair took the audience on a tour of the bayous of Louisiana. Sophomore art major and member of the ensemble, Angela Sanchez, enjoyed performing the piece. “I really liked ‘Bayou Breakdown,’” she said. “It was interesting. It was fast, and it was upbeat.” The ensemble then played a beautiful Aaron Copeland piece, “Down a Country Lane.” Its use of flutes and clarinets make the piece moving and uplifting, and even members of the ensemble appeared to be playing each note with feeling. As the applause subsided, a special guest was asked to come on stage. Michelle Palmer, an instructor of clarinet at UMHB and principal clarinetist of the Temple Symphony Orchestra, joined the students in performing the arrangement “Black Dog,” a piece mimicking the musical style of Led Zeppelin and the guitar riffs of Jimi Hendrix. Palmer’s clarinet solos sounded similar to the guitar solos performed by classic rock bands, and the audience could almost feel the electric current in the air. Landsberg said Palmer’s performance was phenomenal. “We’re very fortunate to have Michelle Palmer on our faculty here, and getting to showcase her and work with her has been a real treat for our students,” he said. The ensemble then performed what was arguably one of the most beautiful arrangements of the night. “Be Thou My Vision” showcased the group’s ability to take an old classic and make it their own. The piece was dedicated to ensemble member Christine Marrero, who was unable to attend the performance. Another special guest  then joined the group.  William S. Carson, director of bands at Coe College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is responsible for co-editing the last piece of the evening. The ensemble performed “Spoon River”...

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Game six proves turning point for Texas Rangers’ loss

By Brett Land Heartbreaking. After 162 games, an exciting postseason run and one of the most historic World Series in the life of baseball, the Texas Rangers could almost feel the weight of the championship trophy in their arms. However, they came home with nothing more than sore muscles and regrets. Going into the 2011 World Series, the Rangers and their loyal fans were ready to finish the job they left undone at last year’s fall classic when they lost to the San Francisco Giants in six games. It was time for redemption. “We were so excited last year and didn’t know what we were capable of doing in the Series,” Rangers president and owner Nolan Ryan said in an interview with ESPN. “This year we’re more focused and more determined because we came away a little disappointed.” The hard-hitting Rangers began the series splitting the opening two games in St. Louis. A slow start left the Rangers with a 3-2 loss in game one. A late rally capped off the 2-1 win in game two and tied the series at one game each. Texas Ranger fans everywhere will agree that the 16-7 loss in game three is nothing to be discussed. Albert Pujols crushed 3 homeruns and countless hearts that Saturday night. In both the fourth and fifth games, just four runs proved to be enough for the Rangers to get two victories and take the series lead. One more win and “We are the Champions” would be playing in Arlington. Players and fans alike dreamed of lifting up the trophy and bringing it back to Texas. Then game six happened. It proved to be the turning point of the World Series. With a combined five errors, the game started off sloppy but ended up being one of the most unbelievable and unfortunately, unforgettable games of all time. Texas went into the bottom of the ninth inning with a 5-3 lead. With two runners on and two outs and a full count for Cardinals outfielder, David Freese, the Rangers were one strike, one fly ball or one ground ball and throw to first base away from the Championship. One out. That’s all. David Freese knocked in two RBIs with a triple to right field and tied the game. Extra innings, sports fans. The Rangers quickly bounced back when Josh Hamilton hit a two-run homerun in the top of the tenth. His first home run in almost 100 at-bats. This was the Rangers story book ending, right? Wrong. With two outs and a full count in the bottom of the tenth, Lance Berkman hit an RBI single to center...

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Organization helps serve military students

By Nicole Johnson The Student Veterans Organization is quickly gaining momentum as the university’s only military-based club. Membership is open to anyone who has an affiliation with the military or simply has a desire to help or get to know a current or former service member. Junior cell biology major Jared Peirce is the SVO president and expressed the importance of bringing the university’s military community together. “There are several hundred individuals here who are veterans or family members of veterans, and they all have various knowledge bases, but no one person knows everything. The trick is getting all these people to share what they know with each other,” Peirce said. With primary goals such as assisting students transitioning out of the military, networking and connecting with Fort Hood, the SVO, which was officially chartered in the spring, anticipates having a positive influence on the university. “My expectation for this organization is for it to help improve the situation of students here at UMHB. We’ve already been able to answer a lot of questions from folks who came to the meetings as well as linking some of our veteran   members with a lucrative employment opportunity,” Peirce said. He explained that advising traditional students who are considering a career in the armed forces is another important mission. Having the right counsel in areas such as benefits for enlistees, deployments and employment assistance will help a future service member’s career progress. “I myself missed out on many opportunities as a new soldier that would have made a big difference for me if I had an experienced soldier to advise me as I signed up,” Peirce said. Freshman criminal justice major  Jeralyn Ditlevson found difficulty in adjusting to student life after spending 12 years in the military. She explained how she is grateful for the camaraderie of the SVO because it has assisted her in transitioning from the battlefield to the classroom. “Soldiers always do better when they help each other,” she said. “We just want to reach out to the vets and say ‘Hey, we’re here for you.’” As vice president of events, Ditlevson along with staff adviser Ruby Bowen hopes that more students will become aware of the 25-member organization and want to participate in its upcoming activities. An Organizational Day and Pie-in-the-Face fundraiser are just a few festivities that are on the schedule for November. Also planned are events that put emphasis on supporting those who serve like a Wheelers for the Wounded toy drive, sending care packages to troops in Afghanistan and an off-road trip for injured soldiers and their families. A connection with the Fort Hood military...

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Science Saturday inspires passion

By Katie Maze The Science Education Resource Center hosted its third annual Science Saturday Oct. 29 in the York Science Building. Attendees performed hands-on experiments and activities with student volunteers and professors from biology, chemistry, mathematics, computer science and psychology. Around the first and second floors of York, rooms were filled with students, teachers, parents and children exploring exhibits from each scientific discipline. Children participated in various activities and conducted small experiments designed to teach them different aspects of science. Activities included a psychology presentation, liquid nitrogen ice cream, solar-powered robots, magnetic bumper cars and live animals the kids could play with and learn about. Volunteer and junior clinical laboratory science major Sabrina Hardcastle registered participants for the event. She was eager to see the childrens’ faces as they explored new things. “This is my first year doing this, but it’s the most exciting thing to just see how a simple pencil that changes colors can fascinate them,”  Hardcastle said. “It’s so fun. I’ll definitely be back.” While parents registered their children, kids got the chance to test the theories of gravity and buoyancy by making tinfoil boats and seeing how many pennies it would take to sink them. Toward the end of the afternoon, chemistry professor and director of  the Science Education Resource Center Dr. Darrell Watson performed interactive chemistry experiments in Brindley Auditorium, several of which included watching explosions and learning about  the effects of dry ice on every-day things like bananas and balloons. “I want kids to be excited about science and to know that it is fun. … We turn science into a game for a day, and we hope  that will carry on to high school and college,” He said. Watson got the idea for Science Saturday when he saw his son lose interest in science as he grew older. Watson was motivated to initiate the program on campus when a reporter contacted him about a former student from another university who was selected out of the entire nation to study in the Galapagos Islands. The student gave credit to Watson for passing on a passion for science. “You can’t get that kind of thing in a paycheck,” he said. Watson said that Science Saturday means just as much for the volunteers as it does for the participants. He hopes that such events will motivate children as well as students to get excited about science, so  they will hopefully go on to pursue a career in a scientific field, particularly teaching. “I would love for them to see how exciting and rewarding it is to share their love of science with others. I’m secretly hoping...

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Letter to the Editor

[The Bells writer] got it wrong by ridiculing a “rock.”  It is not a “mundane issue” to belittle nor simply “insensitive,” nor something that just “happened,” but an outright racist issue.  It is not “just a name” for a Black person, as the Haskell County judge said. Perry patronized the place.  No one put him in boxes; he put himself.  The writer points to those who indicated Perry’s “trouble with … race.”  Yet the governor himself brought up the topic of secession (what the Confederacy did, as its leaders said, to maintain slavery) without explicitly endorsing it. He himself referred to states’ rights, historically code for segregated schools, etc. He himself made Rush Limbaugh, someone laden with racist remarks, an honorary Texan. He himself is the sole person who somehow felt compelled the other day to refer to the Black person Cain as “brother,” twice.  He didn’t say “I love you, brother,” to Newt nor “sister” to Michele.  He himself said the federal government has gone too far “protecting civil rights.” Christianity needs more practicing here and elsewhere.  I propose that one of the four required chapels be a service component in the community.  Now that’s a “distinctive” for UMHB, since “distinctives” are currently bandied about. A Christian practice component would make our university stand out in a positive and constructive way among other Christian colleges. Jesus said in Matthew, chapter 22, that the second great commandment after loving God is to “love your neighbor as yourself,” and most importantly that on such “hang all the Law and the Prophets.” He specified doing for “the least of these,” and elsewhere further specified the poor, the sick, and such. Instead we see cutbacks for the poor, sickly health care in Texas, proposed cuts for college aid, slashing of K-12, cuts at food banks, cuts in children’s Head Start, recent candidates exhorting “Reload” and “macaca,” while current audiences cheer for a border fence that electrocutes, dismiss a gay soldier, applause Perry’s 234 executions, and cheer that the sick be left to die. Those are non-Christian acts and The Bells should be writing against that, and for Christian acts, and the more discussed the better. Jose Martinez, Ph.D. Sociology Professor  ...

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