How to plan for an impromptu trip
Jun23

How to plan for an impromptu trip

It’s officially summer for the vast majority of crusaders out there, and along with summer comes vacationing and trips around the state and around the world. Some people plan months in advance. However, there are those who prefer to go with the flow and take trips on the spur of the moment. These types of trips, while fun, could still be planned for and given some thought to make for a better experience overall. Budget Whether you’re making a day trip to the nearest city or taking a weekend getaway to the nearest beach, make sure to know a general maximum you want to spend while out. Having a budget helps to guide you on spending, and it makes sure that you don’t overspend. Always factor in gas and lodging costs, as these can often be the biggest costs. Transportation is key Make sure to gas up before a big trip, and make sure your car is in the best condition possible before making a long drive. Check your gas, and make sure your oil is topped off, and check the air pressure in your tires. Not sure how to do these things yourself? Check out your local Jiffy Lube and Discount Tire. Often, these stores will check your car for free. Making sure your car is in top condition before taking off on a trip ensures that you won’t end up getting stuck somewhere. Have a general idea Even when making an impromptu trip, you should have a general idea of what you want to do when you make it to your location. Whether you want to wander the streets and ask locals for ideas of how to spend your day, or just want to do one specific activity, knowing what you want helps even when making a spontaneous trip. It can help with your budget, as well as knowing your time frame and how long you’ll want to stay. Be OK with being flexible When making a spontaneous trip, it is important to realize that some of the luxuries of planning will have to be given up, like planned out visits to museums and monuments that might otherwise be sold out. Look up online what types of things are popular in the city that don’t require planning, and then try to abide by those. This can help you figure out a general idea of what can be accomplished while on your trip. Also, when planning an overnight trip, call ahead to see what is available. This can save you from spending a night in the car. Spontaneous impromptu trips can be a fun way to get away...

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Play Day 2018
Apr25

Play Day 2018

Photos by Madeline Oden and Sarah Ifft The Stribling Hall mattress racing team rushes to the next check point during Play Day festivities on April 19. Far left back to right are: Katie Wilganowski, Valarie Krauser, Kendall Miller, Chloe Poe (on mattress), Brooke Martinka, Mikayla Presley, and Meghan...

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79th Easter Pageant
Apr11

79th Easter Pageant

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The Old Maid and The Thief: An uncomfortable situation that “dominoes”
Apr11

The Old Maid and The Thief: An uncomfortable situation that “dominoes”

UMHB music professors George and Penny Hogan are once again to conduct the theatre’s newest opera, The Lady and the Thief. This is the first opera to be performed in the new Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Art Center on Friday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. Alumni will also be performing in this year’s show. The Lady and the Thief is a one-act grotesque, radio opera that takes place in 1939. NBC Radio commissioned Gian Carlo Menotti to write this opera for their radio program. Professor George Hogan said there’s a lot to learn from the opera. “This [opera] is situationally grotesque,” George Hogan said. “There’s life lessons you can take away. We’re looking at the human condition in this. It’s basically grotesque hospitality.” Hogan describes the plot of the opera and how situational hospitality plays a part in it. Hogan said that there is an old spinster, Miss Todd, who has a younger maid. There’s also a town gossip named Miss Pinkerton, who comes over one night to talk about the new minister. Hogan said that they’re having tea, there’s a knock at the door and a man who’s drenched from the storm outside. Hogan said the first grotesque hospitality occurs when the two women do what nobody in their right mind would do- invite the strange man into the house. He said the situation dominoes from there with one uncomfortable decision after another. The Hogans are trying something new with this Opera since it was originally on the radio before it was ever performed live. “We’re going to have a foley artist (someone who creates all the sounds on the radio),” George Hogan said. “We’re setting up the pit to be the NBC radio studio… then we’re running two scrims, which is like a veil.” George Hogan said that while the singers are in the pit, the actors will be up on stage. The Hogans said that the actors are supposed to be a part of your imagination as you listen to a radio program. “It’s been really exciting to see this unfold, because it’s a new way to present this,” Penny Hogan said. George Hogan hopes that the opera provides more than just entertainment. “I hope it’s thought-provoking like a sermon would be.” George Hogan says that it’s been different being in the PAC this year instead of at the Cultural Activities Center in Temple. “This has been a learning curve, but there’s been some really wonderful blessings… We’re excited about being in our new building. It’s kind of a freshman year for all of us.” The performances will be tonight...

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Ready Player One: A critical  film review by a true film buff
Apr11

Ready Player One: A critical film review by a true film buff

Disclaimer: this review is coming from a film nerd who has not read the book this film was adapted from. That being said, I walked into the showing of this movie with only a moderate level of anticipation. The trailers enticed me to a point, but I was not dying to see the movie. The most exciting aspect was that Steven Spielberg was the director. The plot revolves around a young man living in the year 2045, where the real world is reduced to slums and extreme poverty. However, an escape from this dreadful future exists in the form of a free, virtual reality game called the Oasis, and nearly everyone plays it daily. Wade Watts, the protagonist, goes on a journey in the game to find an Easter egg hidden by the inventor of the game. The Easter egg promises a large sum of money and complete control of the Oasis. A villainous company, wanting to monopolize the game world, is trying to reach the egg first. This movie is a roller-coaster. There is a wonderfully fast-paced flow to the film, with only one scene bogging down that pacing. Back-to-back, exciting sequences are filled with breathtaking visuals, which really come as a surprise, given that the majority of the film is completely CGI (Computer Generated Imagery). With CGI however, no angle is out of the question. As a result, certain chase sequences provide such a high level of immersion and intensity that it almost seems like virtual reality, sitting in the theater. Some character development is sacrificed to advance the plot, but all of the lead characters have a natural charisma to them, both in reality and in the Oasis, where they can choose their own customizable avatar. The humor hits the mark most of time, and the action is spot on every time. It ranges from being close-quarter firefights to explosive duels at a colossal size. All the while, 80’s rock anthems blare in the background, so the music elevates everything to another level of energy. With the film switching between a completely CGI world and the physical world constantly, my fear is that it would be too jarring. That is not the case with Ready Player One. Spielberg, the director, brilliantly starts off the movie with very infrequent cuts between both realities, and increases them as the film progresses. This gets the viewer adjusted to the transitions, and by the time the climax is switching between realities at a seconds pace, the experience is not confusing and muddled to the audience. certain plot points made it seem a bit too convenient and easy for the characters....

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Without Borders, an International Love
Apr11

Without Borders, an International Love

With 8,597 miles, a 7 hour time difference, and native languages between them, a love between crusader Regina Hauser and Belgium resident Mathis Deville was unlikely. However, now three years strong, the pair has a bond between them that no ocean could break. Sophomore Clinical Lab Scientist Regina Hauser is originally from Bynum, Texas, population 199. Being from this tiny farm town, Hauser grew close to many in the student body and participated in many school activities and sports. Mathias Deville is originally from Brussels, Belgium with a population of 1.175 million people. Bynum residents usually flocked to meet any new foreign exchange students that would be living and studying for the school year, but Hauser noticed girls especially flocked to one new foreign exchange student in particular. She noticed this at one of the first football games of the fall 2014 season. “I remember noticing how strange that most of the girls were surrounding him like bees with honey on the bleachers, but I didn’t know who he was so I didn’t care,” Hauser said. “I was dressed in my volleyball uniform, sitting on one side of the gym, and weirdly enough, I remember what he was wearing. Mathias was wearing a pink polo shirt with khakis. Then I saw everyone adding this guy on Facebook so I added him and saw his pictures but didn’t talk to him.” After a few months of glances and flirtatious smiles, Deville messaged Hauser on Facebook, and a whirlwind romance bloomed. Soon, the two began hanging out together outside of school and on social media, and they quickly became inseparable. “The first time I saw him outside of a school setting and we spoke… I struggled understanding his French/Flemish accent,” Hauser said as she laughed about it. “We dated for about two months after that, and it was awesome. We became close and usually pretty inseparable. But then, he started listening to all of the negative comments school boys were saying about me. Since I had rejected all of them and instantly started dating the new boy in school, they started spreading awful rumors about me, so we decided to break up.” Weeks went by, and Hauser began dreading her encounters with her former boyfriend. Stolen glances and lingering tension was all that seemed to remain between the two, until one day Hauser suspected her sister of withholding information. “One night my sister told me he approached her to ask about me and that he’d been keeping up with me through her the whole time,” Hauser remembered with a smile. “Mathias started texting me again and we started to become good...

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