Reels Just Keep on Turnin'
By Christopher Quinn, the sitting reporter
I have one thing to say to our student council. “Good on
you, fine sirs.” For the excellent presentation of the fine
film makers at our educational establishment was truly a fantastic
success. On Friday, November 28th, Oakwoodites of all ages shuffled
into La Grande Salle du Presentations; the air filled with the
sensuous aromas of freshly roasted popped corn. The room bustled
with activity but soon all were settled into their seats, prepared
for an hour of viewing some of the finest pieces of art to grace
the silver screen. The lights were dimmed which made the room,
as one student said, in a word, “dark”.
As this day was also the day of movie stars, we saw many of our
grade eleven and twelve peers-the McDonald’s servers of
tomorrow- were dressed as Seth from the O.C., Tom Cruise from
Risky Business, Audrey Hepburns (yes, that was meant to be plural
you iranius gastropod) and my personal favourite, Colin Farrell.
We all gazed upon the immense taupe screen which was laid out
before us on the grand stage of our auditorium. It was soon illuminated
with the imaginings of our peers. First was the thrilling, astounding,
stupendous, breathtaking ‘The Proposition’. This is
a tale of the eternal struggle between man and his ever growing
desire for the truth and the greed which dwells within all mankind.
Remarkable cinematography and a surprising ending showed that
there is an up swelling of talent among our student body.
Next we viewed a tale of two men, one love, and one urinal. This
was brought to us by the always creative team of Vincent and Thomas.
Young Thomas was found to be using the lavatory which Vincent
had felt was of his ownership. Hilarity ensued but as always,
a serious political message emerged. The use of “Random
Black Guy” was no doubt a commentary on the oppression of
African-American performers in the film industry. It is good to
see that political satire is alive and well in our education system.
set the cherry atop this flourishing sundae of motion picture
extravagance with an entry from students past. This comedic rendition
of a James Bond film struck a chord with the students as they
no doubt saw the true message: the objectifying of women in action
films of today. It is heartening to see that even our faculty
are willing to put their jobs on the line to stand up for what
they believe in.
A much needed encore of the Thomas and Vince mockumentary capped
off the afternoon and everyone left feeling rejoiced and no doubt
enlightened by the strong morals each film brought to its audience.
Complaints? A few. Many requests for President Colin to put on
a pair of pants over his Risky Business costume were heard. Less
importantly, the popped corn system turned into a minor disaster
when one student spilled a kernel. It is hoped that this small
detail will be overlooked.
Merci beaucoup, Monsieur realisateur.
Official CAPUT Report
Greetings and Happy New Year from the secretary of CAPUT. :o)
We've got tons of stuff going on in this new year, so I'm going
to tell you all about them! First, an OFFICAL announcement: our
winter semi-formal has been pushed back to become an almost-but-not-quite
spring semi-formal. The semi formal will now be on Friday, April
16th. It'll be the perfect party to send everyone off to France
and Montreal and wherever else everybody's going for the March
break. Make sure you buy your ticket as early as possible to take
advantage of our early bird prices!
This year CAPUT is going all out to organize chances for everyone
at Oakwood to show off his or her talent. Last year's film festival
was only the beginning. A talent show was enjoyed by the school
on February 25th. Keep in mind that UNESCO will be holding auditions
Spirit week was a great success, with many of our fellow high-school
students dressing up for days such as twin day, formal day, and
the day that reminded us all that warm weather is on its way (in
a few months): beach day.
CAPUT is always willing to listen to what you have to say. If
you have any questions or ideas for us, let us know. If you can't
find Colin, Ben, Ivana, Mark, Will or me (Vera) in the halls or
the CAPUT office, you can always leave us messages in our mailbox
(just drop off a note to someone in the student office and ask
them to put it in our box).
Make sure that you come out and support all school activities.
You’ll be glad you did!
secretary of CAPUT 2003/2004
Need to Invest in a Hat
(My AIDS Head-shaving Adventure)
Its seems like a long time, but it was only a few short weeks
ago that I had it. It was long, soft, and contrary to popular
belief, was NOT a mullet. My hair was one of my most prized possessions.
Now as we are hit with this –200 C weather, I am saddened
by my loss even more; I mean, I still catch myself twitching my
head to get my now non-existent hair out of my eyes.
My hair was a small price to pay for the sense of helplessness
and irrelevance that was left on the stage with my now decaying
locks. Stephanie Scardellato, Mercedes Marks, Colin Meyer-Macaulay,
Gwen Hixson-Vulpe and of course, myself, the impeccable Jeremy
Powell shaved our heads to raise money to help in the fight against
one of the greatest threats to our species: HIV/AIDS.
We all know from Gr. 9 gym class that HIV is a STD, (sexually
transmitted disease, for those of you who failed) that can strike
anyone anywhere. That is why the AIDS Relief Club has and will
continue to stage awareness campaigns and do things like shaving
our heads, to help our brothers and sisters in Africa, where HIV/AIDS
is a much larger problem.
In some African nations, over 35% of the population have HIV or
AIDS. These people cannot afford the price of drugs shipped in
from the western world. These drugs can not only extend the life
of those afflicted with AIDS, but also can stop HIV in its tracks,
and allow patients to live happy productive lives. These drugs,
manufactured by huge multi-billion dollar companies, are not only
unnecessarily expensive, but could be accessible to all who need
them if governments would commit to helping…
When government fails, it is left to the people to do what they
can. Oakwood has taken a bold and proud step in picking up where
it was necessary. Six hundred dollars was contributed to AIDS
Relief in Africa, thanks to the students and staff of Oakwood.
So far 17 million people have died of HIV/AIDS. At least 25 million
may follow. We have taken our first step on a long journey to
help. I would like to thank everyone who contributed and helped
We will continue to struggle for this cause and welcome new members
to any of our meetings; hope to see you there.
Kwanzaa for the First Time
Ever since I was a teeny Gr. 9 student at Oakwood, I’ve
heard great things about our annual Kwanzaa Banquet, hosted by
Afro-Can. As pathetic as it may sound, I never had the nerve to
attend the banquet myself, although each year I heard great reviews
of it from people in the halls. This year, my final year at Oakwood,
I decided I had to forget my awkwardness and get the courage to
be a part of a culture I had never before experienced, at least
for one evening.
Okay, I wasn’t actually quite brave; I coerced my mother
into attending with me. I know, nothing could sound more sad than
that, but I knew it was the sort of thing she’d find interesting
and educational. And it’s true that I almost chickened out
at the last minute and decided to find a restaurant somewhere
. . . I am actually quite ashamed that I felt worried about going
to this event because of my own culture and skin colour. I won’t
make that mistake again; celebration is celebration, right? And
celebration is not possible without love and an open mind.
Enough of my moral messages, I will move on to the actual banquet.
On the evening of Dec. 4, 2003, my mother and I arrived at Oakwood’s
cafeteria-turned-elegantly-decorated reception hall to be warmly
greeted at the door and have our hands stamped. Had we decided
to go to a restaurant after all, we would have paid much more
than the required $10, and would not have had the experience that
The most inspiring part of the event was witnessing the student
performances. Each one was strong and heartfelt. Even though pressure
was on many of the acts to come up with something at the last
minute, some may not have been at their most prepared that night.
Strongest in my memory is the beautiful rendition of the Black
National Anthem by three talented girls. Also, the powerful spoken
word pieces by Dwayne Morgan made my mind race and left me speechless.
I also found interesting the explanation of the Kwanzaa principles
by Mrs. Burke, a guest presenter. These simple and yet universally
important principles, each represented by a coloured candle and
a night of Kwanzaa, are (in Swahili and English): Kujichagulia
(self-determination), Ujma (collective work and responsibility),
Ujamma (co-operative economics), Nia (purpose), Kuumba (creativity),
Imani (faith) and Umoja (unity). I can easily see why pride is
taken in celebrating a holiday honouring so much cultural wisdom.
The food, as well, was delicious, warm and filling. The one thing
I found disappointing was that the Kwanzaa Banquet was not a larger
and better-attended event. I like to think that other years have
been better supported by the school population, but as you know,
I have no other years to compare it to. There is so much talent
and culture in our school, and so much stigma around displaying
it and supporting it. I truly hope that in the future, the Kwanzaa
Banquet and the people who work so hard to make it good will have
the chance to expand and celebrate involvement in this holiday
in a larger and just as beautiful way. You don’t have to
be a dork like me and bring your mother, but check it out. It’s
one evening that I’m glad I didn’t chicken out of.