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Journal of No. 118


January 23rd, 2004

High School @ 02:20 pm

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Stolen from britgeekgrrl. But first, some maudlin verbiage.

Funny that this should come up. I had a rare fit of nostalgia the other day and looked up my old high school online and found some alumni listed there. Among them, one of my best friends, Bill. He's the high school friend I kept in touch with longest (I guess if you discount Scott & Brent, who I barely remember as some sort of young vermin in high school, but who later made it to UCLA) but I haven't talked to Bill in about 7-8 years. I sent him some email, and we've traded a couple emails back and forth. Also looking at the alumni and Classmates, I kept wondering to myself, "Who the hell are these people? I totally don't remember any of you."
And I'm sure the feeling is extremely mutual.



Brea Olinda High School, Class of 1986. That link has a picture of the school I went to. It was knocked down ten years ago and now there's a minimall just like every other minimall in Orange County there. The new school looks like a freakin' college campus.

1.Nickname in high school?

Um, Mike. Pretty lame, I know.

2. Sport you were into?
Marching Band! Okay, it's not a sport, but it counted as physical education so I didn't have to take gym. Until they changed the rule. Trombone, in case you're wondering what I played. Part of the low brass, and we were very low indeed.

3. Had a circle of friends?
If by circle, you mean two, then yes. John and Bill were definitely my best friends. The only ones I saw much of outside of school. At school, there were others I would put in the friend category: Dirk, Brian, Jeff, Paul, Anna, Chad, Doug, Jason, Charlie, Dawn, Eric, Jim, Shawna... it's pathetic how vague my memories have become.

4. Best subject?
Math. My brain sucked it up like a sponge. Reminds me of the day I was surreptitiously trying to help Tracy with Alg. II in class. I had such an enormous embarrassing crush on her it's not even funny. Anyway, Mr. Hilleary notices me helping her, and in what I can only imagine was a bold attempt on his part to help a fellow math-nerd get lucky, he told Tracy and me to go sit outside the classroom. Since these were crappy little temporary trailer classrooms, this means I sat out in the sun next to the object of my affection and taught her synthetic division or something. But since I was genuinely and painfully nerdy, the conversation never strayed from x's and y's. And though I often dogged her heels like a pathetic puppy-dog, nothing ever came of it.
To show that teenage idiocy, awkwardness and cruelty knows no bounds, I'll point out that there was a girl who dogged my heels for several months with pulsating heart-shaped eyes. I paid as little attention to her as Tracy did to me.

5. Worst subject?
Well, I was a brainy swot, so I did fine in everything. I didn't really care for Biology. Or English for the first couple years. Actually, that reminds me... I have a terrible memory for exact wording. Unlike Rebecca, who has reams of meaningful poetry memorizes, I'm an utter failure. I can translate a passage into mentalese and tell you the gist of it, but I can't do it word for word. One test we had involved memorizing the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet and writing it down word for word. I got an F.

6. A teacher you owe life lessons to?
Life Lessons? My mind's a blank. I'll just honor a few
Mr. Chandler, for his sense of humor and love of science
Mr. Bishop, for his amazing calm when teaching people to drive.
Mrs. Taylor, for telling me, "You're so cynical!" all the time.
Mr. Kennan, for showing us all that history was not about memorizing dates and names.
Mrs. Sweet, for her love of the classics.

7. A teacher you wanna kick in the ass?
Mrs. Gahr was pretty awful.

Describe in one word...

8. Freshman year: Prepubescent.

9. Sophomore year: Pubescent!

10. Junior year: Nerd!!!

11. Senior year: Relaxed.

12. Your best friend was?
Well, for most of it, it appeared that John was. We shared a love of music, computers, role-playing games and a birthday. As freshmen, we were both the same height -- really small.
Senior year, his parents moved back to Texas, but he wanted to graduate with us, so he lived with my family. Things really started to fall apart then. He actually moved to Texas after the first semester; the stated reason was that his parents had offered to buy him a car.
Shortly after he moved to Texas, he became a born-again fundamentalist Christian and halted all communication with me because I might taint him with evil.
So Bill actually wins the best friend award. He came to our school maybe sophomore year after (IIRC) he had been caught trying to set his old school on fire. That describes Bill pretty well. He also became fairly Christian, but it never got in the way.

13. Your worst friend was?
Probably Brian L. Wealthy, snobbish, mean-spirited... naturally he went to USC. I think it was his intention to go into law.

14. Cafeteria food sucked?
I wouldn't know. I brownbagged it.

15. Most hilarious school rule?
Can't think of anything all that hilarious. How about, "If you get pregnant, you have to go to the 'bad school'"?

16. Wore uniforms?
No way!

17. How was the prom?
How the hell should I know?

18. Who was prom king and queen?
How the hell should I know?

19. Any achievements?
Plenty of academic things, but I was loath to brag about it even back then. Now that it's even more irrelevant, I'm not gonna bother. So here's the non-academic achievements.
Helping to found the Apathy Club. Every couple months we'd have an announcement over the PA saying that the meeting had been cancelled. And then we appeared in the yearbook with no picture.
There was one song the marching band did where I had the melody (not common for the trombone). Each time we played it, there was about a minute where I stood, playing, while everyone else marched around behind me.
Another band memory at an away football game... Our school won, and students from the other school started harrassing the band. They picked on the flute and clarinet players. Pretty soon, I (and the rest of my low brass comrades) swept down on them and kicked some ass. There weren't many punches thrown, but they wilted before our mighty onslaught.

20. Were you popular?
See definition of nerd.

21. Best song that reminds you of high school?
I hated a lot of the 80's music. I listed to mostly Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. But if I had to pick things from my school years that I liked (thank you Wikipedia for a little help):
"Sweet Dreams" - Eurythmics
"Take on me" - A-ha (possibly more for the video)
"Voices Carry" - 'Til Tuesday
"Money for Nothing" - Dire Straits
"Let's Dance" - David Bowie
"Rock Me Amadeus" - Falco (It's just crazy enough to love!)
"Puttin' on the Ritz" - Taco (Also crazy enough to love!)

Songs that instantly bring back that time period, but are not *huge* favorites of mine:
"Don't You Forget About Me" - Simple Minds
"Every Breath You Take" - The Police
"Shout" - Tears for Fears
"Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" - Cyndi Lauper
"Material Girl" - Madonna
"All She Wants to do is Dance" - Don Henley [and just about everything else on the Real Genius soundtrack]
"Sledgehammer" - Peter Gabriel
"Time After Time" - Cyndi Lauper
"Neun und Neunzig Luftballon" - Nena (Yay! German Class!)
"Da Da Da" - Trio (Yay! German Class!)

Song that I wish could be expunged from my brain:
"Wake Me Up Before You Go" - Wham!
 
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[User Picture Icon]
From:britgeekgrrl
Date:January 23rd, 2004 10:35 pm (UTC)
(Link)
"Rock Me Amadeus" - Falco (It's just crazy enough to love!)

One of my dirty little secrets is a Falco CD hidden down the back of my bookcase. ;)
[User Picture Icon]
From:toren_atkinson
Date:January 26th, 2004 02:52 am (UTC)
(Link)
"Freshman, sophomore, junior, senior" - we don't have these appelations in Canada (or at least, not at any of my schools) - we just say grade 9, 10, 11 or 12. In fact, until you listed them in this order, I wouldn't have known which order they went in (except I would suspect senior would be grade 12). Funny how that works out, hey?
From:(Anonymous)
Date:January 26th, 2004 05:43 pm (UTC)

Blame Canada!

(Link)
OK, other than Quebec and Frenchie Separatists, can someone tell me ANYTHING that's wrong with Canada?

Journal of No. 118