The Dancing Chipmunk

Written by: Alexia Teo (22-U1), Nigel Ng Ngan Siang (21-A3) 

Designed by: Alexia Teo (22-U1)

This story is a KPOP version of Alvin and the chipmunks.

Alvin is a chipmunk who loves to sing and dance. He is signed on to a KPOP label. While training to debut as a KPOP idol, he made 2 friends, Simon and Theodore. Simon was handsome while Theodore was cute. Alvin was… Alvin. Both of them had trendy looks and were better looking compared to Alvin. However, Alvin was more hardworking and thus had reasonably better skills.

The three often hung out together, goofing around whenever they had a chance to. Nevertheless, they took practice very seriously and were improving day by day. One day, the CEO encouraged them to join a KPOP survival program. They were happy but worried, especially Alvin who knew he was lacking compared to the other two. Despite their reservations and worries, they ultimately auditioned for the show and got in. 

On the day of the first recording, the three of them made their way to the dorm to meet the other contestants. Even though everyone was pleasant, it was clear that every contestant was vying for a spot in the group and was secretly sizing each other up. As days went by, the competition was getting fiercer and fiercer as more were eliminated or dropped out. Miraculously, the three of them managed to make their way into the top 20 and the live stage on the final day. However, their placings within the top 20 were so low that their chances of debut were slim.

Alvin, however, was just below both his friends. Just then, the show host announced that ALL ranks will be reset and they will start competing without any advantage. This, of course, was most beneficial to Alvin. However, there was a dark secret behind this decision.

What Alvin didn’t know was that during the programme, Simon and Theodore were involved in a contract dispute. Being on the show brought them a huge boost in popularity and the attention of many bigger companies. They then were scouted by other agencies that wished to ‘steal’ them and have them represent their agency instead. Although Simon and Theodore already had an agency, they entertained these scouts and even met them for talks and discussions. As a result, Alvin’s agency was infuriated at the lack of loyalty from the 2 trainees and was determined to let Alvin debut ahead of his friends. A new hire at the agency coincidentally had solid connections with one of the show’s producers. In order to gain a promotion, the hire arranged a meeting with the producer and the head of his company. During the meeting, they managed to strike an illicit deal… 

Before their joint performance, a producer approached Alvin to ask him if he would like a guaranteed debut but with a few unscrupulous conditions. So, Alvin listened to the producer’s conditions and thought long and hard whether to betray his friends. He was tasked to trip and fall to ruin his friends’ performance. Anyway, the scores would be manipulated in favour of Alvin, so only stood to gain. 

Alvin had been a trainee for a long period of time and did not want to waste his prime years away. He knew the older he got, the less time and chance he had of accomplishing his dream. Hence, he was extremely tempted by the offer.

At last, he accepted the producer’s offer.  It is Simon and Theodore’s fault for not staying true to our agency, he thought to himself guiltily as justification. 

During the final performance, he sneakily stuck out his foot as his friends were performing the highlight of the song. As expected, Simon and Theodore ruined the performance with their fall. Netizens clamoured to criticise them while Alvin was made out to be the victim of their clumsiness.  

After the final scores were revealed, Alvin was not at all surprised but had to put on a show in front of his friends. Upon hearing that his two friends didn’t make it, Alvin burst into tears. He felt bad as his friends were congratulating him. Minutes later, he was overjoyed to have achieved his dream. When the live telecast ended, it was revealed that even without the producer’s help, Alvin would have made it into the team. However, it was Simon and Theodore that were unfortunately a few places behind. Alvin then realised that his selfishness had denied his friends a chance to debut.

As he and the rest of the debut team were guided away from his friends to their first briefing, Alvin felt the guilt and shame well up to consume him. He turned to have one final look at his friends woefully consoling each other and wondered what could have been… 

Hockey’s Toxic Culture

Written by: Eliora Tan (21-E5)

Designed by: Jovielle Bruto (22-A2)

Photo Credit: New York Post

In the first-round series opener of the recent National Hockey League (NHL) Playoffs, things got bloody and violent quickly in the third period. The on-ice brawl between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Toronto Maple Leafs ended with Lightning defenseman Jan Rutta skating off the ice with his forehead covered in blood after receiving a harsh blow from Leafs defenseman and alternate captain Morgan Rielly. 

Hockey remains the only major team sport where players can punch one another in the face, and get away with it. In hockey, fighting is part of “The Code”, an unwritten set of rules and regulations that players have to abide by. A long-accepted part of hockey culture at the professional level is that violent conflicts are the norm, not the exception. After all, Gordie Howe, nicknamed “Mr. Hockey”, came up with a variation of a hat trick – one that involved, a goal, an assist, and a fight in a single game.

But why is fighting even allowed in hockey? In the book “The Code: The Unwritten Rules of Fighting and Retaliation in the NHL,” author Ross Bernstein explains that fighting ensures checks and balances for hockey to “police itself”, and it serves as a reminder that the violation of “The Code” will bring about inevitable consequences. Often seen in leagues today, cross-checks on star players by the opposing team that are perceived to be unnecessary stir up unrest in the star players’ teammates, thereby escalating the tension to the possibility of a brawl. There are even players whose role is simply to intimidate and hold the opposing teams’ players accountable for injuring one’s own teammates. They are nicknamed “enforcers”. 

Leagues around the world recognise that this culture of fighting is toxic, and for many reasons. Firstly, fighting causes players to be more susceptible to health-related issues, from traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) like concussions to mental health problems. Naturally, the role that enforcers take on subject them to greater risks. While they may be hailed as the “tough guy” that fights for the welfare of their own teammates by protecting them, they should not have to put their lives in danger for it. In fact, many retired enforcers have stepped up to share their sentiments, through interviews and social media, shedding light on the haunting trauma they experienced. 

Secondly, hockey is a breeding ground for toxic hyper-masculinity, and promotes unhealthy qualities like aggression and anger. More often than not, brawls in hockey are triggered by the most trivial of circumstances, where players challenge one another to fight simply to put on a show for the audience, and to put their opponent down. 

Lastly, since hockey’s history and culture is steeped in fighting lore, it glorifies violence and aspiring hockey players have the misconception that in order to play hockey well, they have to fight well. Children who grow up watching their favourite hockey idols throw punches on ice, will have no qualms mirroring the violent actions of these so-called “role models”. For those who have the necessary skills to succeed, such as great footwork and exemplary stick-handling skills, they will almost never showcase their talent on ice if they are not up for some fighting once in a while. After all, the message that the hockey culture sends today is that what makes a hockey player is more than just his ability to pass, score, and defend, but also his ability to injure his opponent. 

Thankfully, fights in hockey are less common today. There has been progress made by leagues, including the NHL, to combat this toxic culture of fighting. Instead of a two-minute “roughing” penalty that has no actual consequences off-ice, players are evaluated and fined for unsportsmanlike conduct after the game has concluded. Notably, referees and linesmen today also take on a more active role in separating players from each other when faced with scrimmages on ice, as compared to the past, where they would normally stall and allow serious damage to take place before stepping in. Additionally, younger players entering the leagues are stepping up to showcase their outstanding talent, which far surpasses the need for fights and brawls, much to the dismay of ageing traditionalists who value a good hockey game as much as a good hockey fight. It is indeed heartening to see that there has been a culture shift. 

However, while progress has been made, it is an unfortunate and undeniable fact that fighting will remain in hockey. “The Code”, as we know it, is not a set of rules and regulations that is easily overturned. Fighting is intertwined with hockey itself, and while many have now come to see the negative effects of the violent and bloody brawls that take place, it may take generations before hockey fights are gone for good. For now, as long as there is a hockey player who wants to start a brawl, or a fan who cheers on their team to win a scrimmage, hockey’s toxic culture of fighting is here to stay. 


  1. Branch, J. (2021, July 19). Fighting in the NHL Reveals Few, if Any, Winners. The New York Times. 
  2. Flanagan, G. (2021, July 7). Why fighting is allowed in the NHL, and there are no plans to ban it. Business Insider. Retrieved June 17, 2022, from 
  3. Forbes, A. (2022, March 31). The Gordie Howe Hat Trick. The Hockey Writers. 

Tasch, J. (2022, May 3). Lightning, Maple Leafs get into frantic, bloody brawl in NHL playoff opener. New York Post.

A-Level Results Release 2023

Written by: Yam Lok Sum (22-A1), Alexia Teo (22-U1)

Designed by: Alexia Teo (22-U1)

For many JC2 graduates across the island, 17 February was a day marked on their calendars with much anxiety and anticipation. Our Eunoians were no  exception and were seen streaming back to the campus that they had grown familiar with over their 2 years. 

This year was novel, in the sense that it marked the return of a joint results release ever since COVID-19, where the release of results in the previous few years was done in smaller groups in class. This year, the whole cohort received their results together in the MPH. 

Their arrival was a slow trickle at first, but more students were subsequently seen gathered at the symposia and around the canteen. 

Friends took final class pictures as they waited for their results that would inevitably mark a divergence in their lives. “I’m so scared” and “What if I don’t get an A?” were echoed in many conversations. To further support the next chapter in students’ education, local university booths were set up outside the MPH  to promote their offerings. Teachers bustled about carrying boxes of certificates, in preparation for their imminent release. 

As 2.00pm approached, the all too familiar music marking the start of Period Zero played through the sound system to usher the mass of students into the MPH. The sea of students (dotted with newly bald heads) filed into rows according to their classes,  with their CTs giving them a warm welcome back. 

The release of results was preceded by a customary speech by our principal Mr Andrew Tan. He welcomed back our beloved seniors, and subsequently revealed the cohort’s mean and median performance statistics. “Your grades do not define you, remember that there is more to life”, he assured. Chatters of excitement spread through the venue as students began engaging in discussions.

After half an hour, the results were individually distributed to students by their teachers. The culmination of 2 years’ worth of hard work lay neatly in their certificate books. Cheers of glee were heard in the hall, even as there were grimaces of disappointment and teary eyes. Friends rallied together to celebrate, provide comfort, and both. This display of solidarity and unity built over the 2 years was heartening to see. 

No matter what, we were proud and happy for our seniors who had concluded this defining period of their life. It no doubt took much hard work and perseverance, which we felt were more important takeaways, trumping any score.

As J2s, we are aware that we will be in the exact same position in a year’s time and that thought had stirred many mixed emotions and much trepidation. Seeing how our seniors had ‘survived’ their journey and were met with joy and freedom at the end, we felt a new sense of purpose and strength in our A-level journey. 

When asked about advice he would give to his juniors, Aaron Wong (21-I4) recounted, “Looking back at my experience in JC, I’ve taken away so much more than just the knowledge to scribble on an exam paper. Whatever happens, remember that A’s isn’t the sole meaning behind your time here. Just try your best and cherish these fleeting 2 years!”

Be brave. Be strong. But at the end of it all, enjoy the process. 

Into the Dark Depths of Discovery

Written by: Aaron Wong Jielun (21-I4) and Lye Jae Vir (22-I1)

Designed by: Alexia Teo (22-U1)

The sun’s rays, illuminating the world below; nature’s thalassic secrets revealed, its knowledge made known to men. The rays permeated the shallow deep, bouncing off the vast array of wildlife around me as I descended. Gradually, the ocean’s denizens grew to be more defined from the homogeneity of the deep blue, the animals and plants becoming more visible. 

Sagittaria sagittifolia, Hippoglossus stenolepis, Eriocaulon aquaticum! 

The familiarity of these entities warmed me, the ocean was my domain and its inhabitants were my subjects. 

Soon, I hit the seabed. My diving suit was attached to a thick lengthy tether supplying me power from my boat above. I would be underwater for some time, and the gear I used required more power than any portable battery could provide. 

Tugging the tether along as I swam, I started the survey. Familiar life-forms of all shapes and sizes, popping up as blips on my radar. The survey area was divided into sections and I had only just embarked on the first one. Rock formations resembling humans and objects from my life greeted me while I stuffed squirming fish into glass jars for their required analysis. 

The Lamp, The Microwave, The Misshapen Fist!

Truly, I was in home base. 

The fish, aptly named Nemo for his distinctively orange hues, had been around for almost every survey since it started a decade ago. The analyzer was still buzzing and Nemo was being prodded at by lasers and needles. Despite being long past his appointed hour, Nemo still had the virility of youth. Although I regarded Nemo as an old-time friend, his memory of only a few hours made it hard for me to establish any deeper connection—albeit being a deeper connection than most I shared with others. Similarly, virtually none of the local denizens were unbeknownst to me. Each one had been meticulously tagged and colloquially named, and any change in the area’s population would not go unnoticed. Every nook and cranny, jotted down and mapped for posterity. 

I looked down at the jar I had kept Nemo in to release him, only to realise that it was devoid of its intended inhabitant. While I was on my internal monologue, Nemo had somehow escaped out of the jar. Checking my radar, a tiny blip with his tag showed up. He was barreling across the area, out of the safe confines of the canyon and off the continental shelf, straight into the recesses of the deep. Horrified, I grabbed my tether and equipment, making my way off to grab Nemo before it was too late. The data was incomplete and Nemo had to return. 

The tether grew tauter as I zipped through the sea. Nemo was almost beyond the shelf and any strong current risked his sure demise. Swimming with all the veracity a middle-aged researcher could conjure, the tether forced me to stop in my tracks. I had stretched it to its fullest limits and it could yield me no further length. Determined as I was, I unplugged the tether – my sole power supply –  relying on the small batteries I had with me. It would only be for a few moments, Nemo was just within sight. 

Now completely independent of any restriction, I continued my mad rush to salvage the survey. Nemo appeared dazed from the distance, ostensibly from an overdose during his time in the jar. Lunging, I grabbed Nemo and stuffed him into the jar once again, ensuring that it was sealed tight. Triumphant, I tapped the jar and the survey resumed.

My mind now free of my former pre-occupation, I took in my surroundings. Alien rock formations, caverns and canyons. The sun’s rays barely penetrated this area, its secrets and knowledge refusing to be let known to the world. 

The Fish with Sharp Teeth, The Bones and Carcasses of Unknown Origin, The Chilling Bellows of the Deep! 

The world around me exuded an eerie aura, the faint glow of the sun only revealing the silhouettes of entities untagged and unlabeled. The creatures and rocks here beckoned not to me, they bore no intimacy and name to the researcher from afar. 

In my desperation to save Nemo, I had gone off the shelf and into the deep ocean. 

Suddenly, a large blip appeared on my radar. It was entirely unknown to me and the database, appearing only as question-marks and a blip confirming its organic existence. Even for the deep ocean, a species this large being undiscovered was almost unheard of. The radar bore no data about it, this creature was genuinely alien to mankind. Checking my power supply, the portable batteries I carried could only yield an hour or two of strenuous use. However, such an opportunity rarely presented itself, even to the researcher with multiple lifetimes. 

With a sigh I opened the jar, “Sorry, bud.”

I nudged a sober Nemo out. His body was not suited for higher pressures.

“I’ll see you again later.” 

But Nemo was well on his way home by the utterance of the last word.

And so, in the name of scientific inquisition, I took off into the abyss. 

The surface was getting further away like a distant sky, but still I went deeper. I had to. Near the surface, bathing in light and illumination, everything had already been discovered; carefully examined, studied and classified. But down here, in the deep, who knew what revelations could possibly emerge. And so down I went. Down into the deep, dark recesses of discovery.

My radar sensor pinged a constant red on the inside of my helmet visor. The distance between me and the creature I was tracking never seemed to shorten, no matter how hard I swam. It was almost as if it was deliberately keeping just at the edge of my sensor’s radius, luring me to it. No organism I had studied ever exhibited such behaviour. It had to be a coincidence. But the alternative gnawed on me. I was so curious.

All the while, my suit’s pressure gauge was steadily rising and its power bar was falling. My oxygen metre flashed. I got tired of keeping track of it all. My full attention was only focused on the creature. 

My arms clawed through the water towards the creature, as if they were pulling on a watery thread, trying in vain to tug the creature closer. My legs kicked furiously, maximising the momentum of my heavy suit. The residual light from the surface had thinned out until I was trapped in an inky suspension. 

I tapped on the headlamp affixed to my helmet. A white beam carved through the darkness like a searchlight. 

The water shone a subtle greenish hue. The rock formations had thinned out into long spikes, geological appendages that twisted and cracked. Strange, bioluminescent polyps grew across and inside their surfaces: red, yellow, purple, orange variations that even my  vast knowledge could not ascribe names to. 

For all their vibrancy, however, they were shrivelled up, and sparse.The deep sea seemed dead. Other than the polyps, neither my eyes nor my sensors could detect any other traces of life. With the exception of it.

In this emptiness, and with the aid of my headlamp, I could finally just barely see it now.

For all my eyes could tell, the creature was a muddy silhouette that deceptively could have been either two or twenty metres away. My suit’s sensors helpfully informed me that it was in fact thirty metres away. Thirty? With this level of turbidity, and in this darkness, being able to visually discern something at that distance… 

It had to be extremely big. The thought alone sent my mind racing with excitement, making me forget the dull numbness aching within my skull.


Shrill cries emanated from the hunk of metal that cared for my body’s safety more than I did. But the suit wasn’t alive. It had never experienced truly living, like I was now. I was in a greater position to decide what I wanted to do with my body. And I decided to go deeper.


The beeping was sounding faster and faster, matching pace with my thumping heart. Just a bit more. Just a bit further. I had to see it.

The first thing that failed was the headlamp. Its light flickered and died, plunging me into a faceless void. I could only listen to the sounds of my own breathing echoing within my helmet, and the mute sloshing of water around my suit.

In a few minutes, my sensors shut down too. With no sight, no direction, I continued swimming. I didn’t need my sensors to track it. I knew it was down there. I just had to keep moving.

In time, my movements began to grow sluggish, as resistance pushed against my arms and legs. The suit’s hydraulic motors had ceased functioning, so I was now keenly experiencing the opposing force of the wall of water enveloping me. Even as I was forced to slow down to a crawl, I kept moving.

I had no idea how much more time passed in that faceless abyss. I had no idea when I first noticed its presence. But at some point I felt a sudden disturbance in the fluid ahead of me. Then I heard it reverberating through the metal suit, drilling into my skin: a low rumbling. 

It was pitch black, but I had to see it with my eyes. My own eyes. Unfiltered. My hands reached for the base of my neck. My fingers pressed in—SNAP—and my helmet was removed.

I see it. I’ve discovered it. I’ve finally gotten what I wanted.

And so did it.