All it took was one hit. When he couldn't hold it in any longer, Eric, a senior, opened his mouth and blew out a thin stream of smoke. Then everything went dark. The last thing he felt was his body hitting the floor. When he came to, he found himself in another world. "Salvia hits you fast," he says. "I wasn't even finished exhaling. The high only lasted 10 minutes, but it feels like a lifetime when you're tripping."
At 12:04 p.m. on April 20, an unidentified male called the county's emergency communications center issuing a bomb threat to the Blair building, according to a police report filed by Blair Cluster Educational Facilities Officer Ralph Penn.
On Dec. 16, Juan, a freshman, awoke at 5:30 a.m. to a gun pointed at his face. Three police officers in full SWAT gear stood staring back at him. As Juan and his family were forced bodily from their beds and handcuffed, the rest of the 12-member team ransacked the house for evidence of gang activity — it had received a tip from Blair security that Juan had allegedly attacked another student with a gun.
Senior Soonto Mukhtar stared, bewildered, at the pages of a reading primer in front of her. The curves and angles of the text looked as meaningless as scratches in the dirt. It was Mukhtar's first day at Blair, her first time sitting at a desk and certainly her first time opening a book. Mukhtar, then 17, had never learned how to read in any language — she had never attended school before.
"Roving Mars," the new IMAX documentary playing at the National Air and Space Museum is, as the opening credits announce, "presented as a public service by Lockheed Martin, in collaboration with NASA." But wait — aren't public services usually free? So why, then, does a ticket for this 40-minute documentary cost a whopping $8.50?
Kevin, a sophomore, surveys the empty third-floor hallway and ducks into a bathroom, his hand placed protectively over the paint pen concealed in his pocket. The tags scrawled throughout the bathroom - covering the stalls and sprinkled across the walls, floors, and even plumbing fixtures - are testament to his lengthy, productive graffiti campaign.
If "In Her Shoes" was a pair of shoes, it would be the kind a girl might buy on a whim – pink patent-leather stilettos, perhaps – and that she wears for only an hour or two before her feet are so pinched and blistered she can only hobble a few torturous steps before collapsing in agony. A week later, they're stuffed into a box in the back of the closet, never again to see the light of day. Cute on the surface, but ultimately painful – that's "In Her Shoes."
Junior Quentin Snively squints towards the sun, his eyes following the basketball as it leaves his outstretched palms in a graceful arc. It sinks into the net with a satisfying swish. Snively spends most of his lunch periods the same way he has since he was in second grade - out on the school basketball courts with friends, engaged in a casual game of four-on-four.
"Crónicas", from Ecuadorian writer/director Sebastian Cordero, is an intelligent, suspenseful Spanish-language journalism thriller that examines the power of sensationalistic tabloid reporting. Although the film's conclusion is anticlimactic, "Crónicas" is nevertheless a riveting and authentic portrait of the harrowing destitution of Central America and a commentary on the ruthlessness of the corporate media.