Came high school, and in Mrs. Krawet’s Global Stud

youies I class I sat next to this energetic guy named
Robert, who joked about the no-brained teenagers working in 7-11’s, made fun of the way our
teacher dramatized the pronunciation of the Huang-Ho and Yangtze Rivers, and satirized the
teacher’s methodology of hand-signals for facts, generalizations, and cause/effect. Finding common
ground in our senses of humor, and love of the TV Simpson’s, we grew acquainted with each other.

Later in the year we teamed up as the defense lawyers in a class mock trial in which Mao Zedong
was charged with crimes against the people of China. To Mrs. Krawet’s dismay, “legal wrangling”
caused the mock trial to last two weeks, even though she had planned for it to take three days, until
it was resolved by a split decision, with the jury voting 6 guilty and 6 innocent. More important than
the result was the experience of friendship and shared learning. We each had a great deal of fun
preparing questions for the witnesses and planning our cross examinations, and after the trial we
remained good friends.

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Tenth grade would be a notable year. Robert introduced me to Ashley and Tiffany, our classmates in
English. The four of us had a great time making our first home movie, based on the allegory Redwall,
at Robert’s house. Our filming day coincided with a snowstorm, so the outside scenes were hilarious.

Plus, when we jumped up against the side of Rob’s house, we knocked down some books off a shelf
inside. In the end, we all had a great laugh watching our final product. In March, Tiffany invited me to
her Sweet Sixteen birthday party, the first major social occasion that I had attended in years. I will
always remember the wonderful time we all had dancing and celebrating. Later in the year, we made
another movie for English class, which was more of a satire. In it we managed to include many of our
history teacher Mrs. Lemma’s infamous quotes by working them into the lines of Basil Stag Hare, a
character from the Redwall novel who often spoke in nonsense. In June Tiffany invited Ashley and
me to her house for a study party, hoping that we could learn enough of Global Studies to excel on
the Regents exam. After wasting most of the afternoon watching TV, we highlighted the review
book, and we were finally ready for the big test.

Last fall Tiffany and Ashley convinced me to go to the Homecoming dance, and I began to realize all
the fun that life has to offer. It was only natural that the group of us had an even better time at our
Junior Prom. I must admit that if I had never met them, I would have missed out on the complete
experience of a truly special occasion. On Halloween we all went trick-or-treating in Ashley’s
neighborhood, with Robert dressed as an outrageous mime, and I in the less exotic costume of a
carpetbagger. That night we took a trip through the
haunted house; we were blinded by the strobe
light in the basement, and scared out of our wits when a ‘ghost’ jumped out of a fake coffin and
started up a chain-saw. Now, as the first to have a driver’s license, I’ve become the chauffeur to
dances, movies, and restaurants.

As one might guess, Tiff, Rob and Ashley have all exerted a positive influence on me. My senior year
is full of group projects, after school activities, and companionship with friends that all had its
beginning with a humorous classmate in the ninth grade. Although I still spend significant time on
schoolwork, I enjoy life much more, and my grades remain high. Friendship is one of the great gifts
of life, and Robert, Tiffany, and Ashley have helped me to fully enjoy it. Knowing them has been one
of the highlights of my life, and they have surely left their footprints on my soul.
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