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My High School Yearbook! (Four Years Later), May 21st, 2000 :: Ben Turner's Soapbox

 

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archived soapbox: May 21st, 2000
"My High School Yearbook! (Four Years Later)" [permalink]
    keywords: high school, yearbook, graduation
    soapbox #: 242
    written: May 21st, 2000
    words: 1310

"My High School Yearbook! (Four Years Later)", an Essay

I thought it would be fun to take some time out, now that I am unofficially graduated from college (it's a semi-long, completely uninteresting story), to go back to my senior yearbook from high school and reminisce on all the good times I had, and what certain people I knew chose to write in my yearbook for posterity.

After all, it's only fair, now that I've been getting e-mails from good old high school chums who dropped off the face of the map only to reappear come the end of their senior years. Granted, I'm not innocent either, but I made no promises and I don't think I've ever betrayed a friend. :P

How did they find me? Probably through my old PESH site, an outdated piece of shit that was basically a failed project but had some great moments, like the catalogue of weird things at our high school and also that whole Columbine fiasco that occurred on my site a year ago. Yeah, they probably did a search and my site was the only one that dared mention PESH.

So let's see...ah yes. Here's a good one to start with:

Our much esteemed class president writes, "Can you believe that we are graduating. [sic] It seems like yesterday when we were at Mendenhall. The three years of Latin was [sic] also fun (Dr [sic] Duke was great). Good luck in the future. I know you will be successful."

Well we just don't get any more generic than that, do we? Yeah, that was great. We hung out in second grade and eventually we went our separate ways. I'm sure he has developed an excellent future in boring, dull bullshit speak that sounds good and wastes time.

Our next entry comes from my English teacher, who was one of the most influential people in getting me more interested in reading and analyzing text. She also had a crush or something on my dad in a scholarly way, him being a professor. She would usually embarrass me in class by saying she thought my dad was the smartest man on the planet. Yeah, that gets you REAL far as a high school student.

"Ben, you are the kind of student that only the teacher gets to appreciate. You have a fine mind, and I have watched it grow and mature this year. You are becoming a scholar in an excellent tradition. Best of everything to you, ..."

Huh. At that point I was still writing uninspired papers about topics I wasn't even that knowledgeable in. Maybe she meant my writing style? I remember cramming in the morning for that day's quiz that I'd forgotten about. It never helped to cram for that class. I bet it helped more that I came from "a tradition". :P

Next: "Ben, the thing I remember about you is when you were in elementary school and you loved baseball. I always thought of you as the soon-to-be famous baseball player. But now I guess I'll think of you as the infamous internet phantom (or something like that!) Well, my IRC nick is [omitted] so look me up sometime! Tootles, ..."

Yeah, I guess that's right. I loved baseball. Up until that nightmare coach who actively promoted nepotism. That was fun. What I learned from that season is that it doesn't matter how you play the game, it matters whether you win. :P The season before that was pretty cool. I'm fairly sure I was the all-star first baseman who never was, simply because he ran into a good ol' Southern coach named Gaylord.

"Ben, I can't believe I've known for so long [sic; these people must've been in a hurry to get away from me, they make so many errors] and I just got to really know you this year! You're a really sweet guy and English was a blast, huh!? I wish you the best of luck throughout college."

Note for women and for men who do not yet know this: being told you're a "sweet guy" is the kiss of death and is one of the worst things you can tell a guy. Basically what it means is you are completely boring and yet you are also 100% harmless to that girl so she wants to be nice. Other variations may include "I'm kind of seeing someone else", "I don't feel like I'm missing a big opportunity at this point in my life", and just about anything else a woman will say, not including "So...what are you doing tonight?"

The next one refers to a comment I made to the rest of the Latin students about how I wished to completely disappear and be forgotten after high school. A response:

"Ben, you cannot fulfill your wish to be nondescript in high school because I will always remember you. Although you are rather tasteless because you like Catullus, you are better than I expected. (just kidding) Anyway, you are a great Latin student and although we have not been great friend [sic], I will keep in touch! I will see you over the summer."

Hollow words, of course. 1) I sucked at Latin. 2) We didn't keep in touch even though we had some Latin courses at college together. Result: your generic "I'll call you!" line that people should stop saying because all it means is, "Au revoir, you pukehead!"

Really the rest is fluff and had little worth mentioning. I will however conclude with this one, which won the "most potential but least follow-through" award.

"Ben, I'm happy I got to sit near you first semester to get to know you (at least a little bit). It would be nice to sit next to you now so I could know you even better! You're an amazingly smart person and I could only wish for your intelligence! Your creativity on the original poem you wrote is very inspiring (I hope you don't think that's mushy!) Have fun with the rest of your life and good luck.

"P.S. - Now I have more time.... Latin has introduced me to quite a few interesting people, but you're probably the nicest one I've met through Latin. Everyone could always use a few nice guys in their lives. I hope we have the opportunity to run into each other sometime later in our lives and I'll leave my number just in case you wish to call this summer ([omitted]). I hope you'll inspire others with your writings."

Okay so we hooked up a few times but nothing ever happened. Probably a combination of me not knowing what to do and her just being an indecisive girl. :P More the latter since it got hard to contact her. That is not a good sign. They never make it easy. But I wish all women were this direct and straight-forward in their advances, and I wish they'd kind of push the initiative a little more. Let's not leave it up to the guys to figure everything out, okay ladies?

Ah yes, what a nice little jaunt down memory lane. And that's all I needed. It is a time in my life I will not miss. Can you blame me?

There is, however, a last laugh to this story.

[extra note: I appear on 3 pages in the yearbook, and two of those I couldn't get out of because they were for the tennis team -- can't be completely transparent...]


 
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