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Heavy backpacks cause seismic damage on campus

Art by Geena San Diego

There’s a new menace on Eagle Rock’s campus. No, it isn’t the DP program, I said a new menace. Even our beautiful, brand new, retrofitted auditorium isn’t safe.

Cracks have been spotted creeping their way up the basketball courts, and some of the windows on the third floor have shattered. Oh wait, they’ve always been like that. Anyways, you might be wondering, what is the source of this seemingly seismic level force? Well, it’s not the tectonic plates, that’s for sure. It’s those larger-than-life backpacks that the seventh graders lug around all day long, and the moment they put them down is what causes this force of nature.

Our first case of this supernatural occurrence comes on September 5, 2021, 13:53. Fourth period had just begun, and seventh grader Gabriel Sellers had just entered Mr. Hicks’ classroom. He was exhausted, and quickly went to relieve himself of the burden that was his whopping 132-pound backpack. He hung it over the back of his chair, and proceeded to sit down.

After a boring lecture from Mr. Hicks, Gabriel was practically asleep, and didn’t realize it when his chair began to tip. As the chair’s legs lifted themselves backward, it picked up momentum, and crashed into the floor with a force of what witnesses say must have been at least 27 G’s. This created a shockwave of energy that was sent through the entire liberal arts building, balcony, and parts of the administration building, with the quake clocking a 10.1 on the Richter Scale. Some say they heard a sonic boom, but that may have just been Mr. Pierce screaming at the football team.

Rumors aside, I recently spoke with Balthazar Costanova VII, Professor of Septimagradusus at Cave in the Forest University. He began his studies of this phenomenon at the age of three, and has been pouring over ancient texts on the subject ever since. He said “It takes very specific conditions to create a flip of the magnitude that your school witnessed. I haven’t seen a flip that strong in 43 years!” According to Costanova, in order for the flip to cause a tremor, the backpack must weigh at least 125 pounds, the chair must be at least 27.4358 inches away from any nearby table, and the student in the chair must weigh less than 75 pounds.” Here’s a simple mathematical representation of this scenario:

Now solve for x (submit your answer in the comments section). Furthermore, as I was about to leave the interview, Costanova started ranting about how critics were describing his expertise as “too niche” to be an actual science. I heartily disagree.

I was also able to get a hold of Gabriel, who has been back on campus after a couple days in rehab. As I was making my way to his third period class, I saw Mr. Moran in his golf cart doing donuts on the basketball court. He was also blasting “Drivers License” by Olivia Rodrigo from a speaker that was tied to the roof. Anyways, back to Gabriel.

When asked about how it felt to be at the epicenter of the quake he said, “It felt like I was being transported to another dimension. Time and space seemed to warp around me, and I remember a feeling of weightlessness. I swear I saw someone fighting a giant jellyfish out of the corner of my eye!” He might want to consider a few more days in rehab.

After weighing all the options, I’ve come up with a couple of solutions to this real-world problem. The first and most logical solution would be to mandate a rigorous workout class that all seventh graders would take instead of math and english, so as to strengthen their backs, and help them gain some much needed weight.

My second solution is to have all seventh graders bring a 50 pound weight to school, so when they sit down, they can put it on their lap to counterbalance the weight of their backpack. My third solution is to reduce the amount of items seventh graders carry in their backpacks. But you can disregard this last suggestion, as it is simply unfathomable.

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