Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Your Turn (and a contest! with prizes!)

I'm headed out for a little vacation (WHAT? You don't think I deserve a vacation just three weeks after my last vacation?) so I'll be MIA for a short while.

However! That doesn't mean you can just ignore me. It's your turn to answer one of my favorite questions from the Q&A series. And, as a reward, I'll randomly choose one commenter to receive an assortment of his/her favorite German treats! If you don't know what you want, I'll pop a wad of Haribo in the mail and you can thank me later.

Here's the question:
What were you like in high school?

Those of you who asked questions in my earlier post are obligated to participate. The rest of you, well, you want a prize, don't you?


C N Heidelberg said...

I grew up in a rural town - our high school was shared with two other rural area towns (actually, more than two, but only two big enough to have their town's name in the name of the school) and I still graduated with a class of only 55 or so. With a small size like this conformism is key because there just aren't enough people to fill in all the typical high school groups you see in movies. Everyone tries to be in just the one big group, though there are a couple of decidedly "bad" small side groups ("trashy" people, and special ed). Anyway it's probably obvious that this is the preamble to me saying that I didn't fit in at all, but with pretty good reason. My best friend and I spent a lot of weekends driving off to the big cities of Ames and Des Moines and Omaha to hang out with people we'd met at various nerd camps and have fun. They were mostly the geeky but cool types - into drama and music and what have you, but not memorizing Star Trek episodes. She and I were co-valedictorians of our class and are still friends, and actually we both live in Europe now too!

Christina G said...

Well, I went to a special high school for science and mathematics (TJHSST, the number one rated high school in the US, in fact), so my school didn't have the usual cliques either. We had the nerdy jocks, the geeky computer folks, and the oddball drama people, among others (and PLENTY of folks memorizing Star Trek episodes and arguing which graphing calculator was the best).

I was a total underacheiver, and anti-authority. If a class was required, I was sure to skip as often as possible and put in a bare minimum of effort. But then I would get A's in all my AP classes and courses like Robotics or Artificial Intelligence Programming. I finished high school with a *gulp* 1.7 GPA (that and my 1450 SAT score guaranteed that I wouldn't get into a decent college - VaTech said in the rejection letter that I was clearly a slacker and they didn't want slackers).

I didn't feel cool or anything, but from talking to people since high school, I guess I was perceived as more cool than not. I was a shotputter on the track team, I played tenor sax in band, I wrote disturbing stories and poetry (the school even called my parents in for a conference about that), and I programmed on a supercomputer for my senior year research project.

I didn't really belong to a group. I'd float around between groups; hanging with the jocks one day, the computer nerds the next, then the band geeks, or the Asian posse.

I guess I wasted a huge opportunity by being a stupid teenager. And that is probably WAY more than you wanted to know, so, hope you enjoyed getting a peek into my psyche.

missbeegail said...

I was a self-righteous know-it-all in high school. So not much has changed! Haha, mostly kidding.

I thought I had the world figured out. Everything was very black and white to me. There were the right things to do (study) and the wrong things to do (drink) and that was that. It might go without saying, but I wasn't that much fun in high school. Not that I wasn't a nice person. I was generally kind and loyal and had a very close group of friends I adored. I worked really hard in school and WAY too much of my self-esteem was tied up in the grades I got.

It's a shame I was so scared to try new things, but I grew out of it.

britten said...

High school was by no means the best time in my life, but I have primarily fond memories and I'm still close to many of my friends from childhood. While I was pretty nerdy, I had a lot of friends from a variety of cliques and bounced around between groups. I mostly hung out with the weird theatre kids, though I was never actually in a play myself. I think I was probably pretty likeable, but not particularly memorable. Sometimes I tried too hard to be The Strange One; I would spout of lyrics from obscure They Might Be Giants songs just to weird people out.

I went to a big public high school with a lot of drugs, teen pregnancy, and a big drop-out problem (only 60% of those of us who started out in 9th grade graduated -- sadly, now the stat at my high school is 50%). I was a "good" kid in comparison to many of my classmates -- I did well in school, respected my parents, worked 20 hours a week at a cafe, and was almost always the designated driver.

Still, in comparison to most kids in America, I also was up to a lot of no good. College was a shocker to me because of how sheltered my classmates were; while they were going wild and pushing the boundaries of life without parents, I felt like I'd already been there and it was long since out of my system.

Anonymous said...

I grew up a rural town. (I detect a theme) High School was forgettable and I don't think about it much anymore. I really have just one person I stay in touch with. There were 110 in my class (I was #10 in case you want to know). A lot of us went to college, most never finished. I can think of only six that went out of state. A scary number still live in town and have never lived anywhere else (except for prison in a couple cases), joined by those who moved away and have gone back.

I went to my 20 year reunion about 4 years ago(gulp). It was okay, but morphed in to a kegger and a private party for all the people that still live in town and/or have married classmates.

You'll find my name in the trophy case, but on a speech and debate trophy. Not on the 200 sports trophys. That tells you what you need to know about my high school - you were either a jock or you were not.

Montana at its finest.

EuroTrippen said...

I was a mess in high school. Stringy hair, acne, crooked teeth... longing for boobs and boys and the expensive lime-green and peachy-coral Izod shirts all the popular kids wore. I kept my head down and practiced the fine art of being a ghost. I never drew attention to myself, never look anyone in the eye, and never... under any circumstances... expressed an opinion.

Then, a few months before my 16th birthday, I blossomed. Suddenly boys started noticing me and popular girls were passing me notes in class. I finally had what I'd always wanted- and I hated it. Hated them for only assuming I was worth something once my pound of flesh had appreciated.

So I'd go out on weekends, lie about my age, and screw guys far too old for me. With the exception of my freshman year I didn't join any clubs, shunned all school dances (including my prom), and silently mocked the few teachers who actually tried to help me - all things I now regret.

Tom said...

I was kind of proud of the fact that I was into sports (captain of the football team Sr. year) and the arts (president of the band, first-chair trumpet, and choir). Like most of us, our high school had its cliques, but I was able to span most of them pretty easily.

One of my crowning achievements was starring with none other than our host here in the senior play. Blythe was the damsel in distress, and I was the one that put her there.

One of my claims to fame was dating more freshman as a senior than any other guy, barely. That sounds bad, but it was only four to three.

Basically, I had a blast in high school, to the point that I was one of those tools that would return after graduation under the auspices of "visiting teachers" or some other such B.S., but mostly to hopefully have the youngin's fawn all over me again. It rarely worked.

It was kind of like Wooderson from Dazed and Confused, 'cept I'm not that big a fan of redheads.

distracted by genius said...

In high school I was chronically out of place. I was the poor day student with a 45 minute commute at my private all-girls high school (graduating class: 39) and the kid in my town who didn't go to the local high school. I lived on a farm, but wasn't into farm animals and was even allergic to hay. I was actually least out of place during my exchange year in Germany. I was totally in love with being in love, but had a very limited number of boyfriends. I had a good group of friends, generally the students who studied hard, but were also silly and a little quirky. I took a lot of pride in my academics and was probably a little stuck up about it. One of my close friends and I used to joke during senior year that after earning reputations as 'honest & good' kids we could get away with a lot. We didn't actually do much of anything, but we thought we were being naughty by driving our mothers' aging cars a little fast and having the occasional cigarette.
I was ready for a bigger world and a lot of adventure and was the student in my school who went the furthest for college. I had very little school spirit at the time, but always adored my teachers. I guess I was the sort of geeky, displaced girl with a great sense of adventure. That probably makes me sound way more exciting than I actually was!

Katie said...

(Can I just say, wow - these are all so fantastic! Tom & EuroTrippen made me laugh out loud!)

I too grew up in a rural area and went to "town" for high school.

Busy would be the one word I'd use describe me back then. I was also older then than I am now and probably could have done with a major dose of DO NOT SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF...but it didn't happen that way. I was all Patty Simcox on the outside; and pure Heathers on the inside. Sort of like the teen version of a lemonhead.

Freshman year I made the varsity basketball team which felt really rad for all of a month until the preseason began and I realized I was really scrawny and that my playing time made some teammates mighty angry, not to mention oppponents.

I liked all the boys who didn't know I existed, and attracted any weirdo/creep who knew I did. I skirted the very edge of rebellion -- didn't drink or party at all, but cut class expertly and kept all the right secrets from all the right people.

I was on student council, in clubs, and in plays when I wasn't playing basketball or volleyball, which was basically all the time to the extent that neither were any fun by the time senior year rolled around.

High school was hands-down the least pleasant time of my life and the best part about graduation was that I didn't get a bloody nose because it was 96 that day, and we wore black robes on the football field.

Anonymous said...

In hind sight, I don't really like the person I was in high school, but NOBODY should be judged on the person they were at that age. It's not that I was bad in any way, I just wish I'd been less concerned with what everyone else thought. Although, I have learned that being that way then taught me to be less so now and appreciate those kids I went to high school with that clearly DIDN'T care. What old souls! What awesome people! What strong sense of self must one possess to be okay with being different at an age where everyone wants to be cool and be the same but at the same time be different enough to be interesting!

To answer your question, though, I was a closet nerd (that never really changed), a terrible athlete who usually made the team because she was so tall, and the girl who was always friends with boys and then got really awkward when feelings developed (on either side). I was also always known as "Peter's sister," even though I'm 2 years older than he is and therefore had been at the school longer. I had a great time in high school and I wouldn't change a thing. But leaving Montana when I was 18 and figuring myself out was the best thing I ever did. (Thanks, Blythe!)