This has been one of those weeks that feels like a bunch of stuff is happening while nothing is really happening at all. It’s weird. So, I’m just gonna list all the stuff that has mildly to extremely interested me this week. Insert awkward transition here.
If you’re a junior in high school in the United States, you might have had to wake up on Wednesday and Thursday to face two hours of this fancy new Common Core testing. It supposed to be some sort of critical thinking alternative to normal standardized testing, probably because there can be -gasp- more than one right answer. And I feel like I should applaud the government for their efforts or something, but I’m just gonna say that I really hate taking tests on computers. Like, I don’t like reading off a computer screen or trying to highlight things by clicking the options menu or pressing buttons on their insanely small calculator. Most of my discomfort is probably just due to the fact that I’m extremely irritable in the morning, but I do prefer old-fashioned test booklets, where I can crease the pages and underline as I please. But that’s just me.
Applying for Everything Under the Sun
This school year is coming to a close, so that means preparations have already started for next year. I understand the necessity of this and all, but I really wouldn’t mind a break every now and then. Like can’t I have time to situate myself before I even begin to think about whatever ensuing madness is going to rear its head next year? I guess not.
Here’s what’s already been determined about next school year (which, weirdly enough is still this year, but let’s try not to think any more about the passage of time than we need to.) I heard back from the UCI Cancer Research Program that I applied for and they “regret to inform me” that I did not make it in, through they “strongly encourage” that I reapply next year. I was talking about it with some of my other friends who didn’t make it in, and we were all disappointed, but not as disappointed as we’d thought we would be. Maybe it just hasn’t sunk in yet; that’s always a possibility. Or maybe it was a different kind of disappointment. Right after I read the rejection email, I said to my friend who asked me how I felt, “I don’t feel it in my head, I feel it in my stomach, if that makes any sense.” I think it does, at least to me.
On a happier note, I did get accepted into Link Crew, which I am especially excited about. Link Crew is this program that takes place about a week before school starts, where all the incoming freshmen are herded into an auditorium and then sent in small groups to their Link Crew leaders, upperclassmen who are supposed to explain to the freshmen what they can expect from high school. I’m really looking forward to this because I have this unexplainable love for underclassmen. I think they’re afraid, but unafraid at the same time. And some of them are just really funny. Or maybe it’s the fact that they haven’t been corrupted yet. Who knows. Unfortunately, our band director is not pleased that such a large chunk of upperclassmen are participating in Link Crew. He’s worried about how we’ll be missing days of band camp, and that’s understandable, though I really wish that he would be more supportive of us pursuing extracurriculars outside of band. But don’t even get me started on that rant.
Apart from those two things, I’ve also applied to be a board member on Medical Society and a section leader in the band. And that’s another thing. With every single student in high school being expected to overachieve, it’s really starting to make me question my own motivations. Like I feel like it’s messed me up. Before this, I could try out for things simply because I wanted to do them. But now, there’s always a part of me wondering why I’m really doing this, who I’m really doing this for. Is it something I want to experience or something I think I need to put on a college application. All my decisions are tainted with this underlying doubt that I’m no longer doing things for myself. And I hate that. Almost as much as SBAC testing.
Rethinking all my life decisions,
P.S. I was also gonna talk about TV shows and Catcher in the Rye, but the tone just got increasingly serious, and I couldn’t shift it back. Maybe next time.