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    For CE: Goodbye by Cora


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    Join date : 2009-09-01

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    Post  CoraOrmseth on Sun May 23, 2010 12:28 pm

    Great Expectations

    By Cora Ormseth

    The eighth grade promo party was over, yearbooks were signed, and that awful Vitamin C song finally finished its haunting chorus. The thought of high school—J-Building’s menacing labyrinth coupled with all the cattiness of the movie Mean Girls—dropped a lead weight in the pit of my stomach. I am going to be swirlied into oblivion.

    Luckily, I soon discovered that Arcadia High is not your typical high school. For starters, it is perfectly normal to be a nerd—no fear of swirlies there. Our band is not full of geeks—the halftime show is watched just as avidly as the football game itself. Fist and cat fights are relatively rare occurrences (the closest I’ve seen was when a guy dumped a Cup of Noodles on someone’s head). The stereotypes so prevalent in American media become oddly warped and turned upside-down when they reach our campus.

    Perhaps it is that inability to attach a label to anyone here that frees up any inhibitions and breeds such greatness. Our desire to excel far surpasses the need to fit in. As a school, we are so consistently over-achieving that it hardly comes as a surprise to sit in a classroom with someone who has marched in the Rose Parade, claimed the national championship, or maybe even competed in the Olympics.

    More impressive than any title or award, however, is the overwhelming kindness I have encountered at AHS. It’s the intuition of a friend who can sense when you’re having a bad day, the camaraderie of a penguin huddle during a bitterly cold morning workout, the answer hurriedly whispered to you when put on the spot in a class discussion. Knowing that there are people who will love you even if you finish last in a race or happen to have an unhealthy obsession with a certain short track speed skater.

    I feel so humbled to have spent the past four years with my truly incredible peers. The prospect of graduation, while undoubtedly sad, is exciting because I know that these people I grew up with are going to go on to do amazing things. One day I might open The New York Times to find my fellow Pow Wow member’s name on the byline. Maybe my lab partner from AP Biology will be part of the team of scientists to discover new medical breakthroughs. Maybe a musician who played at the Pops Assembly will perform at Carnegie Hall. Whatever it is, I’m looking forward to hearing about it.

    Perhaps we have been deprived of a normal high school experience. We don’t have a cafeteria with territories staked out by different cliques. As far as I’ve heard, nobody has gotten swirlied. We don’t have lockers. We don’t, as of now, have half our school properly assembled. But we do have people—nearly 4,000 of them. And it is those people who have made the high school experience uniquely Arcadian. I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

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