The New Columns

Saving Private Pingree

Anders Umholtz

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SOUTH HAMILTON FRONT – Pingree is a deeply divided school. Groups have formed that attack one another based solely on their color. These groups include: the Garnet Coalition, the Titanite Federation, the Sapphire Army, the Carnelian League, the Amethyst Alliance, and the Emerald Bloc. The skirmish of September the 13th saw a lengthy standoff between the six sides, with belligerents completing arduous tasks like scaling structurally questionable walls and extracting enemy intelligence from highly encrypted sliding puzzles. Analysts have yet to decide whether the alleged traversal of wet monkey bars and forcing of soldiers to remain standing on the battlefield for almost two hours was in violation of the Geneva Conventions.

11.09.2018 08:21 EST – The world was witness to one of the most depraved war rituals in human history. Defined by the International Criminal Court, “Musical chairs is a game of elimination involving players, chairs, and music, with one fewer chair than players. When the music stops whichever player fails to sit on a chair is eliminated, with a chair then being removed and the process repeated until only one player remains.” According to inside sources, off-duty soldiers were forced by generals to be present for this twisted show of human viciousness under the threat of receiving a “P.E.A.P.” (Pacifist/Escapist Amelioration Protocol.)

Director of the Engaged Army Network (D.E.A.N.) Len Williamson said of possible positive outcomes to the war: “I think it will be a way for [soldiers] of different [ranking] to interact with each other, get to know each other, and learn from each other. I think it’ll motivate [servicemen] toward action- the action can come in a number of ways, but I think mainly for ways to make the [world] a better place, I think the [international military alliances] can come together and be motivated by their peers and by the structure itself to achieve something and make [the world] great.” The promise of a post-war unification movement, improbable or not, seems to be effective in keeping soldiers on their feet: an anonymous conscript of the Garnet Coalition told the New Columns, “It’s been fun so far- I mean, I didn’t like how they took away our late start, but it’s making morning meeting a lot more bearable.” 3rd-year Carnelian officer Ryan Lynch still feels that things are going well: “I think the house system fosters a sense of community, and engages friendly competition.” An anonymous source from the Sapphire Army told the Columns, “I think it’s a good system to get students more involved with school activities, but I think it could be improved with more fun challenges; I wasn’t such a big fan of Grit n’ Wit [elite military training program.]”Megan O’Neill, leader of Titanite, says she likes, “Getting to know other people who you might not always get to interact with. I got to meet a new teacher in the math department, Ms. Kottmeyer, who is a co-leader with me. Our paths may not have crossed otherwise.”

“I’ve also solicited feedback,” continues Dir. Williamson. “So I’ve checked in with [recruits] informally to ask them what they think about it, what worked about some of the stuff we’ve done already, and what could be improved, so there’s always areas to make improvements and to make it better. But overall the feedback has been positive: that it’s increasing the sense of community, that it ties into the [UN’s] mission, and that it’s a fun way for [combatants] to work with each other.”

Despite potential for fun and adventure, war comes with enormous costs to human life and dignity. Although no injuries have been reported thus far, the ICC has expressed concerns about the possibility of hurt feelings after the musical chairs victory was stolen from Titanite on Tuesday. Additionally, the legality of professional drone photography within the Beverly Airport Class-D airspace is a little dubious. Things might be looking up for dismayed draftees, however, as [Commander-in-chief] Patrick Aylmer revealed to our field reporter: “…we’re going to try to do a limbo line at [the United Nations Security Council meeting] this Friday, where volunteers can come down and see how low they can go. Also, I ordered 200 leis, so the first 200 people to show up to this week’s highlighted field hockey game get one for free, in the theme of the luau dance later in the evening.” The gathering, should it be successful, will be the motion for peace since the Treaty of Versailles, with representatives from every faction present and not killing one another.

Inside sources informed the Columns that processes of choosing leadership positions within every coalition are taking place very soon. Some groups are holding democratic elections for their leaders, while others are competing for the positions in the popular war-simulation Fortnite. While no information is available yet regarding the roles of these public officials, though many suspect most of the executive decision-making will continue to be handled by self-elected autocrats and oligarchs.

How this war will play out, and how it will end remains to be seen. 2nd-year Amethyst soldier Kabir Reddy has high hopes, though: “I don’t really know much about it, but they should add more activities where you can earn points for your team, as opposed to stuff like the dance. Other than that, everything’s pretty good so far. It would be cool if we had a BBQ at the end of the year for all the groups to participate in.”

From the South Hamilton Front, this is war correspondent Anders Umholtz, signing out.

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Saving Private Pingree