Winning is All! Unless You’re Losing…

These past couple of weeks me and my fellow English classmates have engaged in “Brawls” that were based on the novel, “All Quiet on the Western Front.” We were pit against each other in a true test of skill, knowledge, and preparation. But despite all that, no one would ever have been prepared to face the dangers of the buzzer and the scoring of the judges.

But, no matter the fact, the Brawls were basically just another word for a “debate,” only calling it a Brawl made things much more exciting and even allowed for some SMACKDOWN WWE REFERENCES!!!

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This was photoshopped by the one and only, Vivian. Of course during the brawl their faces were not censored though.

…also this song.

The Brawls themselves were extremely fun to do, but a pain in the bottom to prepare for. I mean, a serious pain in the bottom. I mean, the pain would partially be a result of the procrastination of myself and my group but the sheer amount of time spent prepping for the fight was awful. Time spent reading the book was well spent, but forgetting to mark important pages was really hurting us time-wise. Questions on morality, life, death, friendship, war, and common sense were not unusual in the classroom and often had our brains ticking and tocking for good and reasonable answers.

Just take a look at what me and my group worked on for about 6 hours. Straight. But wait! It’s not over yet! This was merely the academic part of the debate. Albeit, the academic part was the more important part, the Council of Blood(my team name) could not ignore aesthetic. (Credits to Kiomine for setting up the Jeopardy! formatting) The pictures and quotes used were all found by each of my team members as well as myself.

But thank Goodness, all the hardwork payed off. With the strength of me and my partner‘s debating skills, we ended up getting the highest base score(9++/10)! not including the Realest Weaboo’s social media point boost, of course. We ended the day with a sense of accomplishment, but also a sense of sadness and some disappointment. And so we knew, we had to step up our game.

The next brawl was coming around quickly, but this time, we had to get in the top couple of scores in order to be able to participate in the final brawl. So of course, the Council came together for another long night of searching and answering. In the end we produced a similar document. This time around, however, the Council had been weakened by constant outside pressures such as chemistry tests, math tests, and other homework. So in the end, it was just me and my old partner Caitlyn(mentioned above), who did most of the last minute work. Of course we did work on it at school, but all the text in blue was found basically half-and-half, by me and Caitlyn.

And in addition to this, our powerpoint debuted my photoshoping skills once again with the picture shown above. I had snooped around on social media and luckily, I was already friends with my own team and with the enemy team. Using this secret advantage, I had taken previously posted photos of them and compiled it into one beautiful “WWE Smackdown Versus Card.” At least that’s what I called it.

And once again, our extreme preparation pulled us through to the final brawl. The plot twist was that instead of being a 1v1, it was a 1v1v1. That’s right, a tri-way battle. Again, it was time for the Council to reconvene and to work for victory. And I have to say, that the battle may have been a bit too over-hyped, as it wasn’t much of a debate, rather it was an agreement.

However, despite all the disagreeing and sometimes yelling we did, I feel like the class just grew a more friendly atmosphere and we, as classmates, were able to join in laughter and controversial topics. We were also able to dig-deeper into the novel, once again, “All Quiet on the Western Front.” We learned more about topics of violence, peace, morality, materialism, religion, greed, envy, and even war and not only were we able to absorb a plethora of knowledge concerning these topics, we gained something even more important. An opinion backed by reasonable evidence and not just some strange thing your friend found on reddit.

Through the novel, we connected the hard realities of war to the harsh realities of modern society. We realized just how the battlefield could easily be compared to a school as it is compared to a hospital. Just being able to research topics such as war and morality opens ones eyes to a new way of life. Just as the battlefield is humbling, it is humbling to read a story about a single man whose life meant nothing despite all he did for his country.

However, in this small English classroom, we should all vow to not let any voice go unheard, and to never call an unnecessary “All Quiet in the Classroom.” To keep this fire alive, the Brawl-ling fire will be kept lit through the vast amount of tweets we all sent out and responded to on those great debate-filled days.

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