I Survived Squammish High


I’ve sort of been avoiding talking about current events.  Then I wondered why I had nothing to contribute to the blog. Lo and behold– the moment I decide I have to say *something* about what’s been going out there, already, I develop a renaissance of desire for blogging.  Funny how that happens.

So I thought I’d go down memory lane for a bit, to put some things in perspective.  I’d like to make some commentary about the world as it is right now.

Nope, those are not really my high school letters.  I made up a “victim” high school to protect the guilty and innocent alike.  For what it’s worth, alumni who were roughly contemporaries of myself will recognize the place, for better or worse.

High school was not fun for me. I guess you could say it fashionably sucked. Despite this, of the things I really looked forward to when I hit senior year was designing the school tee-shirt.

It was the seniors of the previous year that inspired me.


In case you were wondering, the font is called “Kill the Hippies”

You have to admit, it was pretty awesome. It was even better for me as a teen. I was finally moved out of my blanket apathy for school spirit.  I actually wanted to participate in something… social!

There wasn’t really a school newspaper, and the school poetry mag published all submissions they received. So… what again was the point of having editors? But I digress.  Our poetry magazine’s slogan was “0% Crap”.  This must have dated from before the policy change.  Sure, I was on staff for a while. It was dismal for reasons I could not articulate, so I left.

I did not have the political connections or the financial advantages that made yearbook a reasonable choice. You actually had to apply to be on yearbook staff– and I guess I didn’t make it.  Largely because the children of the PTA and city council critters needed hobbies, too.  The only slot that was open to me was photographer, and I did not have my own camera at the time, which was a requirement.   For me, at least.

So I signed up to help design the tee-shirt. I even had patrons among the student body. They were disturbingly popular, and I couldn’t understand why they were so gung-ho for a little nobody like me.  But there you have it.  I went to my first day… and discovered that the entire project was being shut down.  You see, after the last tee-shirt made, they couldn’t let the students design them anymore. The recent creations didn’t have “team spirit”.  So they shipped it out to some photography studio who gave us an aimless riot of pink and purple balloons and flowers– even for the guys. Naturally it had the photography studio’s logo prominently displayed.

It did not even have our school’s name on it. How is this team spirit?!

I made sure it got buried in the laundry room after it came out of the wash. By the time my mom found it, it was too rancid and mildewed to save.

So with an empty slot in my schedule, I wandered in the name of flex time. I spent a lot of it in the library observing people, and reading books.  I had “friends” more like friendly acquaintances, to be honest, in pretty much all the social groups. The further down the social ladder they were, the more likely we were to socialize outside of school.

We were so cliquish that they even had a clique for people like me. We were called “floaters” though strangely we never socialized with each other.  It’s possible I had an entire social clique to myself.  I suspect a girl named Quinn (not her real name) was also One of Us, but she was more of a quirky preppy than anything.  Well, quirky preppy with a side order of brains.  She and I had Esperanto together, so we had a chance to chat and socialize as a part of the class. Sometimes, even in English.

What made her odd was that she was having the “typical high school experience”– her life did not suck. She was enjoying every minute of it, and not taking the crud personally.

“I mean, you can’t take what institutions do to you personally, right? They are impersonal by nature.”

Sure, I smirked and nodded, but I did not really see how profound this observation was. I had, by that point, given up on taking personal responsibility for pretty much everything. I would cheerfully watch things around me burn, but I wasn’t going to help save it.  Thankfully, I’ve changed a bit since then.

So looking around me, I get this plague of nausea when I see what’s happening– Obamacare, etc. The Democrats want to turn our entire world into high school.  It may harten you to know that even the Soviets would not inflict our “Public School System” on their children. They reasoned that all they got out of it were intractable bullies– so they should change it.

I heard that even the second class soviet citizens got far better education than we did. At least, that’s what Anastazia told me– and she was an immigrant from the Soviet bloc who did not go to a particularly good school by Soviet standards, and she was way ahead of us.

Well, guess what kind of problems we are having now?!  Every one of those media folks even talks like those kids in high school. It makes me sick.

Look. I paid my dues.  I still remember how everyone promised I’d get to leave after the longest four years of my life.  If THAT is called progress, you bet your bottom dollar I’ll jump to the fore and scream “STOP THIS INSANITY!!”  Even if the tank runs me over.

Because I did not survive the shark tank just to get more of of it when I get older.


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