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What You (Don’t) Miss About High School

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Starting out by saying, "High school is so not the best years of your lives" is so clichéd, but I'm going to do it anyway. My name is Maddy and I am a high school junior in Southern California. I hate it. I hate the fact that I actually know some seniors who get away from the dreaded place. I hate our walls, our floors, our books… but honestly, there are a few things that I'm sure I won't miss about high school:

1. The most obvious is grades. Getting into college is dependent on some stupid little number called the GPA. Your AP classes take every second of free time. There's always that one class that you don't get. This item is number one for most, but grades are of little annoyance to me these days. They aren't my favorite thing, but that isn't what's keeping me up late at night. No, I'll have no trouble getting into college.

2. That one friend whom you can't get rid of. I mean, honestly, she's everywhere. You cuss her out in the hallways, tell her you hate her, and she still is planning for you to attend college together and she flies three thousand miles to see your top school. You keep on pushing the clingy girl away, but she just keeps showing up. And if you say something to your friends about how you can't stand her, they look at you like you're nuts, and if you keep it up, they won't talk to you.

3. The overly hopeful best guy friend. The friend who's usually rock solid and you love to death (Not like that, of course), but thinks that the person he likes is in love with him when she told your other friend (the clingy one) she's not. And you can't say anything because then you look like a jealous girlfriend even though you don't like your friend like that. But, you know, when he figures it out, you have to fix everything.

4. Prom. Possibly the worst invention by man. The only thing you've heard about for the last couple of days is prom. The key is who's taking whom. You're actually helping other people pick out limos when you don't even plan to go. But no, you're the girl who probably will go just so your other friend (different from the above two) won't be a third wheel. It runs your life and that's scary.

5. Cliques. This one's obvious. Of course it's going to be on the list.

6. Stupid people. People who don't know what global warming is or that there's a war in Iraq (trust me, these people exist). People who ridicule other people for turning their work in early. People who pee on people's lockers, because it's "funny." Those people.

7. That one teacher. The teacher who tells you you shouldn't be in AP English because you're dyslexic even though you have an A in his class. The teacher who refuses to call you by your real name and instead calls you "Muddy" even though you tell him not to. Yeah, I'm subtle.

8. And on top of all that, all the members of the opposite sex at your school are jerks.

Now, picture yourself a couple of years later: everything's fine. You got into college; the clingy friend is missing; the overly hopeful friend is over the girl and happily married; prom is just a dark memory; cliques have been dismantled; stupid people are still stupid, but you don't have to deal with them; that teacher is retired and no longer haunting high school kids; the members of the opposite sex have matured.

You sure don't miss high school, right?

But for now, you're stuck. Your head is just spinning. Only 23 more days left in this school year, and you figure around 180 next year, so that's only 203 more school days until graduation. But, it's not like you're counting. Nope, you're not counting.

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About Maddy

  • Maddy, Maddy, Maddy. You SO remind me of you at that age. I too was smart (or a smart ass), I didn’t go to my prom, and I had a guy best friend who everyone thought I felt the other way about. I can tell you that after three high school reunions (10-20-30), it’s a helluva lot more fun to go to those than it was to go to class. And I thought I was lucky, I cut school all the time.

    Be comforted that if you’re very, very lucky, you won’t change, and will grow up to be me. As for me, I’m hoping I grow up to be a cranky old crone.

  • Michael

    Wow, I am also a high school junior and know exactly what you are say, it really is all so irksome. Just one more year though to suffer.

  • Condor

    I was a military brat, so my time at various schools was limited. High school was the only school I attended all four years. I didn’t know anyone save for a couple of guys I knew from overseas. So, I was sort of an outcast, but didn’t know it until years later when one of my overseas friends told me that he had gone to elementary school with all the high school students then moved overseas and back to the same area to attend school with all his old elementary buddies. So he had an “in” so to speak.

    I stuck it out, managed my grades, didn’t join any clubs, ran track and took gym for 4 years. Played guitar and basically hung out. To this day, I stay in touch with 2 or 3 from the neighborhood, via emails. The .pdf file that many class members submitted contact information to was very helpful.

    One thing I noticed… at the reunions. The band students remained in touch, and were very socially connected. They actually had fun, supported each other and were very well adjusted. Additionally, the dropouts showed up at the reunions. Why? I couldn’t figure that out until I realized that they were connected with the student body for many years in elementary and middle schools. In retrospect and after attending a couple of reunions I have come to the conclusion that…

    I should have joined the band.