by Ryan Fitting
This is a memoir of a high school student in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho.
High School in Coeur d' Alene
April 8, 2008
As the bell rings, everyone quickly packs up, excited to go to lunch. I leave the room and find myself in the busy halls of Lake City High School. They are always stressful to walk through, especially when you are bumped into by someone with their elbow out, talking on their cell phone, not paying attention. Just getting to the cafeteria is a struggle at this school, but I always make it.
In front of me is a long line of people that are waiting to get their meals. It seems almost endless, and when I get the meal, it hardly seems worth it, but that is to be expected: when there are hundreds of teenagers to feed, the food needs to be fast, cheap, and edible, which explains the limited menu. That is a hard combination to find.
Now for the next challenge at this stuffed school: finding a place to sit. All of the tables are full, but at least there is always a spot on the cold, hard floor. It is difficult to sink down to the floor with a tray in one hand and a backpack weighing me down, but with practice, it is possible.
After shuffling through the packed halls and waiting in the record-breakingly long line, I only have ten minutes to eat. That does not affect me, however, because I was going to eat quickly anyway: sitting cross-legged on a diamond-hard, tile floor, my legs would be asleep in a matter of minutes. It is not easy being overweight sometimes. Luckily, it is kind of normal for an American to be fat, so no one taunts me for it. That makes my life easier.
I managed to eat my lunch before my legs went to sleep, and there is plenty of time to go for a walk around the cafeteria. It is always interesting to see the different cliques that find each other and gather so naturally. They each have their own areas too: the jocks and other socialites gather within the actual cafeteria where all of the tables are; the geeks gather in front of the auditorium door; the delinquents sit in a hall outside of the cafeteria, away from authoritative eyes; there is a table on the edge of the cafeteria where all of the mentally handicapped students and their caretakers sit; and the loners wander around and try to find a secluded area where they can be alone. This is what I see every lunch period.
The bell rings again, signalling the end of lunch. It is time for everyone to go to their last class of the day. Everyone crowds into the halls. Some people head directly to their class, others stop to talk, blocking the halls. That means just one thing: again, there are difficulties in the halls. That is always fun.
I push open the door to my final class: String Orchestra. The students are talking and setting up their stands and chairs, preparing their instruments, and having a few laughs until class starts. I do the same with the other cellists. As I sit with my cello in playing position, I look around the room. It is interesting how alike all of us are. Everyone gets along, and no one is ever mean or angry. Most of us are in the same kind of clique: nerds. Many of us wear glasses, many of us a not athletic, and many of us dress plainly. But strangely, a few are not this way. There is a Goth dressed in dark clothing, and he recently pierced his lip. (I could never do that.) There is a jock. He's an athletic-looking guy that is on the football team. There is also a cheerleader, a loner, an Emo, and a girl who is much more attractive than any of the other girls in the class. How did these people end up in here?
School is over for today, and everyone is ready to go home. Some take the bus; others are driven home by their parents, but a large handful of us get to drive ourselves home, and I am one of them. My car is a '95 Lincoln Continental, and it is in great condition for a first car. Unfortunately, it gets poor gas mileage: eleven miles per gallon. That is almost as bad as a Hummer. It also needs more gas. It seems like I had refilled the gas tank only two weeks ago. The gas station is on the way home, and hopefully the prices have not increased. Three dollars per gallon is bad enough.
There is my home: two stories, a one-car garage, and it's at the edge of a large neighborhood in which every house looks similar. If they were each the same color, it would be impossible to find mine. After coming home from a difficult day of school, it is always nice to go to my room and watch some TV. Mine is equipped with a Dish DVR. I do not know how I ever survived without one. If a good show is on while I am away, the DVR records it automatically for later viewing. I love technology. The show that I usually miss is called Comedy Central Presents. In each episode, there is a different stand-up comedian voicing their opinions about everyday life. One of the most popular subjects is politics; more specifically, President George W. Bush. They always say that he is not very bright, to put it nicely. I would not know how smart he is since I never watch the news. It is difficult to watch something so boring when there are hilarious comedians that can do a better job. They also like to talk about the war in Iraq. It does not matter who is talking about that. I will never understand how it began, I just wish that it would end.
After I have finished my homework, and finished my dinner, it is time for bed. As I close my eyes, I know that tomorrow will be the same: school, home, sleep. If only this city had other things to do besides going to restaurants and shopping. Maybe someday, Coeur d' Alene will change. Maybe there will be many places to go and have some real fun. Until then, I have a routine to follow: school, home, sleep, school, home, sleep. school, home, ...