With the tumultuous 2020 school year finally coming to a close, we wanted to check in with some of our seniors and find out what they are struggling the most to leave behind at JD. Besides the obvious — pizza Friday, Gaspo’s fist bumps, etc. — the class of 2020 had some interesting things to say about what made saying goodbye so hard.
“I know we only experienced them for a year,” explained Josh Hillers, “but they really changed me, and I honestly can’t imagine what my life will be like without the italian tiles.” In fact, this feeling was shared by many seniors we interviewed. “I’m so jealous of the underclassmen. All those years with our beloved tiles! It’s unfair. If only they knew how lucky they were,” expressed Abby Morgan bitterly. “If only I could see them one more time… just to… kiss them goodbye,” was a disturbing sentiment shared by Will Guisbond.
In her interview, Wynnie Gross revealed that she had been sticking a piece of gum under one desk in Mrs. Oppedisano’s room every single school day for 2 years. She was disappointed that she wouldn’t get to finish her masterpiece, but, always one to look on the bright side, told us that “there wasn’t that much room left anyway.”
But there were certain things the seniors just couldn’t bear to part with.
“For me, it’s really just this one thing,” said a hesitant Kyra Schultz. “I don’t know if I should say it — well, okay, I guess I will. So there was this one pencil sharpener in Mr. Cottet’s room that I went to every time I needed to sharpen a pencil. It was my go-to sharpener, you know? Not even because it made my pencil super sharp, just the way it sounded when I turned the handle, like, [loud shrieking, apparently an attempt to replicate pencil sharpener noise]. We really had something special.” She paused, reminiscing. “Anyway, if my pencil broke in English, I would run all the way to B-24 just for that sharpener — dead sprint. Every time. I’ve even driven to school from my house a couple of times when my pencil broke in the middle of my homework… and after all these years, I didn’t even get a chance to say goodbye,” she said sorrowfully. Schultz also disclosed that she had been writing solely in dilapidated crayons for the past three months because she refused to use any other pencil sharpener.
One senior will miss “all the smells.” No elaboration provided.
But overwhelmingly, the seniors reported one thing they would miss most of all: the teachers.
“I just can’t believe we might never be called ‘little buddies’ again,” said Alethea Shirlian-Howlett, gazing at a headshot of Mr. Phillips pinned to her wall.
Amelia Hesler revealed that without the science department, she can’t even get dressed in the morning. “They were my style icons. From Mr. Keenan’s ties to Mr. Sommer’s Hawaiian shirts… I’ve completely lost my sense of fashion without them.” At the time of this interview, she was wearing dutch clogs with knee socks and had a block of cheese strapped to her head.
Mr. Bunyan’s smile is another trademark that will be dearly missed (“I only saw it once, but it was truly a life-altering experience.”) Not to mention Mrs. Moore’s colorfully painted kindness rocks. “I remember when she hurled one at me from all the way across the cafeteria,” reminisced Caleb Porter. “The bruise lasted three weeks, but the kindness lasts forever.”
And, last but not least, the seniors will miss Mr. Ormond’s airhorn. “Nowhere have I heard such a beautiful sound as that airhorn wailing majestically down the hallway,” said a misty-eyed Trey Romano, a single tear rolling down his cheek.
It’s clear that these seniors have a lot to leave behind. But Yampage wants the class of 2020 to remember that we — the tile-kissers, the gum-stickers, the pencil-sharpeners, and even those of us “just in it for pizza Friday” — WE are JD. And that’s one thing that can never be left behind.