Miscellaneous News Writing Assignments

Music Review


Morgan Knox – Column – 9/27/16

Pokémon Go: Childhood Reawakened

During childhood I always wanted to follow in the footsteps of my older brother, and growing up in the 90’s as a little sister to a video game fan meant one thing: Pokémon. If someone would have tried to explain Pokémon Go to a seven-year-old Morgan, I would have said you were insane.

The ritual after school was always the same: Mom picked us up, we would turn the television on to channel four and wait for the theme song: “I want to be the very best like no one ever was.” The adventures of Ash Ketchum and Pikachu were a daily staple in the Knox household. It was a large part of my childhood; my siblings and I were even Pokémon for Halloween one year.

I remember my elementary days on the playground where my pals and I would pretend our favorite Pokémon were real. I always chose Charizard, the flying fire dragon, as I pretended to soar through the air on his back as I ran down the giant hill on the playground.

Now the original 147 Pokémon have returned in a whole new way. In July of 2016 Niantic and the Pokémon Company released the new smart phone augmented reality game Pokémon Go which brings Pokémon into our world, almost literally.

Pokémon Go is an application that lets users create a trainer avatar and allows interactions with the virtual Pokémon through a cellphone. The goal is to increase your trainer level by catching, training and fighting your Pokémon. Unlike the previous Pokémon games, Pokémon Go requires players to get up off the couch to explore parks, monuments, beaches and neighborhoods to catch the virtual monsters.

I absolutely love the game. Every time I go outside to play Pokémon Go I feel like I am going on an adventure. You never know what kind, or how rare of a Pokémon you may find throughout your day.

Here are just a few tips on how to play the game through my experiences with Pokémon Go.

Get ready to get going! I enjoy living an active lifestyle, so the fact that movement is a requirement to even play the game was exciting to me. Just like your virtual character in the original video games, you have to search your physical surroundings to be able to capture Pokémon.

You also have to cover some ground to hatch eggs, which could take up to ten kilometers covered to hatch some of the rarer Pokémon. I have found that biking is the best way to cover ground, discover hidden Pokémon and hatch eggs.

Secondly, I have experienced so many new restaurants, art and architecture while tracking down Pokémon. The game’s main screen shows your character on a map of your location that displays Poké Stops, Gyms and helps give you an idea of which direction to walk to find the hiding Pokémon. Some of the best places to play are in parks, by monuments, museums, malls and the beach. Many Poké Stops are located on sculptures, murals or buildings that I have never taken the time to notice before I started playing the game.

One of my favorite parts of the game is when a trainer is able to pick their team after reaching level five. The three teams available to choose from are: the yellow Team Instinct, the blue Team Mystic and the red Team Valor. Once affiliated with a team, like Instinct, trainers may fight to take over gyms to in-game prizes.

Play in groups; especially with members from your team. Trainers who are on the same team can team up and fight gyms together. There has been many times when my brothers and I defeated much stronger gyms when we fought together.

The first time I experienced Pokémon Go phenomenon in the mass was in downtown Oklahoma City along the river walk. There were people everywhere: young, old, mothers pushing strollers, middle aged men wearing their Team Mystic shirts and people in their favorite Pokémon apparel. It was nuts seeing all those people out playing all at one time, but it was such a neat experience to talk to a complete stranger and know you have something in common.

Go forth and play! Pokémon go is a great way to get some exercise, explore the world around you and maybe even meet some new friends.

My goal is to complete my Pokédex and catch all 147 Pokémon before the second generation is added to the game. Ultimately I want to become the best Pokémon trainer, like no one ever was; even better than my brother.

Script and Video Assignment

Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q94iI4w5x3A


Speech/Meeting Assignment – 10/13/16

Theta Sigma Chi October 10th Meeting

On Monday October 10th the women of Theta Sigma Chi met to talk about their social, service and other happenings of the club for the upcoming week.

The meeting began with information about the Theta Sigma Chi’s fall Open Rush. The event is themed “Fall in Love with Theta” and is Thursday October the 13th from seven p.m. to nine p.m. and will be located on campus at OBU in the WMU Basement. Members need to arrive at 6:30 p.m. to help set up open rush, and they need to stay to help clean up after the event. The members were instructed to wear navy t-shirts, jeans and boots for uniformity.

“Our open rush event is very important in getting our name out as a club, but also informing possible new members what exactly Thetas is all about,” Open Rush co-chair Madi Crow said. “We are looking forward on meeting and fellowshipping with all new the girls Thursday night!”

The next things covered were the social events. Social co-chair Savannah Payne sent an email with all the important details about Theta Dad’s Day that begins at 11:00 a.m. at the intramural fields for a tailgate party on October 15th. Make sure to bring a snack items, lawn chairs and baby pictures of dad and daughter for recreation.

Fathers will need to purchase their tickets for the game online or at the gate. Dad’s Day shirts are 15 dollars and the money is due to Jordan Jackson the treasurer before the event.

“Dad’s Day will be full of fun, laughter, food and football!” social co-chair Ashley Berkey said. “There will be a photo booth for pictures, a stand up “dad” joke contest and a Dad against big sister to see who knows more about the daughter.”

The next event on the calendar is the Greek Life Worship Night sponsored by all of the social clubs on campus. The Awakening will be held October 25th at 8 p.m. in the oval at OBU. The Thetas are responsible for working the table in the Geiger Center and selling the event t-shirts that are 12 dollars. The event is open for the entire OBU campus and everyone is encouraged to attend. If members attend they will receive one social point for the semester of the three total needed.

“With partnering with the other social clubs we are able to put on much larger events for the entire campus that are both fun and glorifying to God,” co-chaplain Landry Forth said. “I’m excited to see the all the clubs and the student body come together and worship the creator outside in his creation.”

Next the chaplains Brooke Dillman and Landry Forth talked about the Theta Prayer Retreat which is occurring Friday November the fourth through Saturday evening on the fifth. Prayer Retreat is a mandatory event, and in case of a conflict contact the judicial board.

The theme is “Fan or Follower” and there will be t-shirts available for purchase. The club will be staying at First Baptist Church of Choctaw for one evening. Make sure to bring sleeping bags, blankets and an air mattress if possible because members will be sleeping on the floor.

“Prayer Retreat is my favorite event of the entire semester,” Dillman said. “I love being able to get away from the stress of school for just a weekend to worship, spend time in God’s word and develop deeper relationships with my Theta sisters.”

The last item addressed was the optional Fall Break Slumber party occurring on the Wednesday night of fall break to Thursday afternoon. The slumber party is being held in Edmond at the Lewis residence. Please be in contact with the vice-president Skylar Blankenship for detail or if there are any further questions.

“We will have the entire media room to ourselves” Blankenship said. “It is the perfect way to kick off fall break by spending time with your sisters.”


Morgan Knox – 10/4/16

Wake Up World: We Live in a Rape Culture

In the movie “Pitch Perfect” the main female character is given an official school rape whistle on her first day of college; many say the whistle is just a joke but to half of the human population it’s not. This small scene may seem insignificant to most but it reveals one of the harsh truths about living as a woman in 2016; we live in a rape culture.

The term “rape culture” is used to show how society blames victims of sexual assault and normalizes male sexual violence. For example if a woman is walking down the street and a man catcalls her, it is her fault that he did so.

According to RAINN statistics, “one out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime (14.8 percent completed, 2.8 percent attempted).”

This stigma begins as early as middle school dress codes. Modesty is what many of the schools want to encourage, but mainly schools want to cut down on the “distractions.”

A middle-school-aged girl gets a new dress over the summer and cannot wait to wear it on the first day of school. Little does she know that the hemline is just millimeters too short, her collar bone is exposed, and she forced to change clothing into something that will create a “distraction free learning zone” for male classmates.

Laura Bates, co-founder of The Everyday Sexism Project, said in her article from “The Atlantic” that “there’s a real culture being built up through some of these dress codes where girls are receiving very clear messages that male behavior, male entitlement to your body in public space is socially acceptable, but you will be punished.”

Women are told very early on by society it is the fault of the female for a man to falter. But society continues with harassment, jokes, advertising, music, and justifying violence that leads to the desensitization of culture to the issue of the rape culture.

When young girls begin driving or are about to leave for college many are given self-defense items: pepper spray, rape whistles, tazers, and sometimes guns. Self-defense is very important, but why must this still be necessary in 2016?

According to RAINN, women in college from the ages of 18-24 are three times more likely to experience sexual violence than women in general. Females from ages 16-19 are four times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape or sexual assault.

Women do not have the same kind of freedom as men. Can a woman do things by herself? Of course, but many decisions are dictated by time of day, location, and overall safety of the area.

If a woman wants to go on a run by herself she constantly needs to be aware of her surroundings. If a young lady needs to go to somewhere downtown it may not be safe for her to go alone after dark. If a woman wants to go out with friends she may invite male friends to add a layer of security.

Women live a hyperaware existence. Stand up for women. Don’t allow for female friends to live in fear. Stand up against the rape culture and be a part of making the world a safer place for all people: women, men and children.

Web Story – Morgan Knox – 11/8/16

Greek Life Students Give Back

“Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me,” John 12:26.

As Christians we are called to serve and to be God’s hands and feet on the earth. Both OBU’s men and women’s Greek Life social clubs have answered the call to service in the Shawnee community.

“Service is not only a time for bonding within the club but it also exemplifies to the Shawnee community Christ’s heart through service,” said junior Bible major Lauren Buffington who is a member of Pi Sigma Phi. “Christ calls us to be servants within our communities and the social clubs at OBU are really good at taking that seriously!”

To get plugged into the community, each of the clubs partner with local nonprofits and charity organizations. These connections have allowed the Greek Life members to make connections and show Christ to a wide range of people from all ages and backgrounds.

“Service means a lot to me individually because it is just something that I love to do,” said junior Tanner Lewis who is a student ministry major and president of the club Omega Chi Delta. “I am a part time youth pastor who spends most days up at C-Bar helping out kids with special needs at the ranch, service has just always been how I demonstrate God’s love to other people.”

Some of the organizations that the clubs work with include Hope House, the Salvation Army and soup kitchen, C-Bar Horsemanship and Cargo Ranch as well as local service projects like painting houses.

“Some of our service activities include us getting together a couple times a semester to make blankets to donate and taking part in the holiday bell ringing that the Salvation Army organizes,” junior Kappa anthropology major Rebecca Lee said.

Throughout the semester campus wide Greek Life events will occur and are open for all students. This gives the OBU community a special opportunity to come together for fellowship while serving their Shawnee neighbors. Some of the clubs will partner with their sibling club to put on larger events. The Brother Sister Club match ups are: Lambdas and Thetas, Betas and Sigma Phi and the Omegas and the Kappas.

“Our main service event this semester is Chacos and Tacos on September 26th where [Kappas and Omegas] are selling $5 tickets and t-shirts to raise money for our local Salvation Army,” Lee said.

Some of the campus wide events include the Neon Party, Greek Life mixers, and Open Rushes in the fall semester. These events give the OBU campus community an opportunity to have fun, dance, eat and fellowship while helping support the Shawnee community.

“The Neon Party was to encourage community on campus between Greek Life and the rest of the student body, but also to collect canned foods that are to be donated to the Soup Kitchen here in Shawnee,” said sophomore pre-allied health major Savannah Payne who is a member of Theta Sigma Chi.

“It was an event where students could come and hang out and have a good time, while donating to a cause that Theta is actively involved in as well. We had a great turn out, collected a lot of cans and had a lot of fun!”

The current three men’s clubs are Beta Gamma Theta, Omega Chi Delta and Lambda Chi Lambda. The three women’s clubs are Kappa Phi Beta, Theta Sigma Chi and Pi Sigma Phi. The clubs will be accepting new members during Rush in the spring semester of 2017 for those looking for a place to get plugged in and to serve their community.

“Our focus is always on Christ in all the service that we do, although life gets busy, crazy, and hectic; We always try to honor and glorify God with our actions of service,” said Lewis.

Obituary Assignment

Morgan Knox –12/1/16

Obituary: Dillon the Lovebird 

Dillon was a bird who touched the lives of all who heard the little Lovebird sing. Raw natural talent was heard through the whistles, calls and chirping of the little birdie.

The bird was named Dillon by her previous owners before she came to live with the Knox’s. It turned out that Dillon was not a he, but a she after she laid an egg in the bottom of her cage a few weeks after relocating to the Knox’s home. The had another Lovebird named Jerry who shared her cage.

The pair of Lovebirds were inseparable for years. Singing with one another, flying around the home, chewing up the Knox children’s homework and perching on people’s shoulders together.

She took a particular liking to the mother of the household and whenever Dillon was out of her cage she was with Melissa. She would perch on her arms, legs, knees and her shoulders. Her favorite place to hide on Melissa was burrowed up inside of Melissa’s hair where she would take naps.

There was never a day where Dillon did not sit in the oval shaped window that looked outside into the great outdoors. She would sit for hours singing and watching the wild birds flying around without the fear of being stuck into any cages.

Building her nest inside her cage was a daily chore. She would fly around the house picking up candy wrappers, chew the edges off paper and hair ribbon to weave together a colorful nest for her eggs.

Dillon’s favorite time of year was Christmas time when there were Christmas trees in almost every room. She would fly between all the trees in the house, climbed deep into the branches, looked at her reflection in the ornaments and whistled along to the Christmas tunes. The trees were her favorite hiding spot when she would play hide-and-go-seek with Jerry and the Knox children.

She had a full live for a Lovebird and she was greatly loved by her humans. 

Dillon passed of old age after 11 years of living as a part of the Knox family. She has taken wing to fly into the great blue sky and beyond. Dillon was preceded in death by her mate Jerry. She is survived by her two offspring Jewel and Jade.  

Her service was held in the backyard of the Knox family that included an intimate gathering of friends, prayer and then the burial underneath a cedar tree. Her body may be at rest but her soul will fly on.