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Step Aside, Seniors, Let the Juniors Ride the Escalator

Part 1 of this opinion piece, by Piedmont High School student Tristan Blackmore, has been removed at his request.

By Peter Hession, The Piedmont Highlander

“The most valuable commodity in this life is time.” I heard this quote in the movie Wall Street last year and it has been something that has dwelled in my mind lately, for I have began to ponder what all the stress my peers endure is for.

As we second semester juniors have entered what is considered the most important stretch of our high school career, it is easy to become consumed by worries of AP tests, SATs, final exams and ways to beef up our extra-curricular resume over the summer.

The clock is ticking to raise undesirable grades, improve test scores and make good impressions on teachers that you might need a letter of recommendation from.

However, our time is also winding down on opportunities to actually enjoy being in high school. As juniors, we only have six more weeks until we officially have one year left of school in Piedmont. After recognizing this reality, it is hard to believe that after that, there is a plausible chance I will not see a good portion of my high school class for the rest of my life. I don’t mean to get overly sentimental, but this idea certainly has merit.

Here are three things that I recommend you do within the coming weeks that will honestly make your high school experience immensely more meaningful.

—Talk to someone you wouldn’t normally talk to. I don’t mean ask them what homework assignment was given in the one class you share together, but rather engage in a thoughtful conversation. Take the opportunity to catch up with people who you’ve known since elementary school. See what they have
been interested in lately, or ask for their opinion on a trending topic. By breaking out of your shell for a moment, you could wind up with a new friend or even a date!

—Try something completely new. It may be a sport you aren’t used to or a club you haven’t considered — get out and try new things. By going out on a limb and exploring an unfamiliar territory, you could make new friends or expose a passion you never knew you had.

—Ask her out. Now’s the time to stop being a wimp. Just go up to the girl you are interested in and legitimately ask her on a date. Of course hookups at DP’s are fun, but I’m sure you’ll have an even better time going out to see a movie or going on a nice hike with the person that interests you. Put your chest out,
lift your head up and show some confidence! This goes for both boys and girls and whomever you may have your eye on.

Speaking for myself, something I would really like to do before I graduate is to have the experience of playing high school football. I have had to opportunity of playing other sports, basketball and water polo, during my time here at PHS, both of which I loved.

However, I cannot deny the appeal of playing under the lights for my last year of high school. It will be a tough process where I will have to dedicate myself and train as hard as I can to compete with players that have been in the program since freshman year, but I am fortunate enough to have received support and encouragement from friends that are already on the team.

I made a goal to give football my best shot this fall because it is something I would regret never attempting, and believe that it would be an excellent way to spend some of my last months at this school.

Don’t let what’s left of your PHS days go to waste. Spend your time wisely!

Peter Hession is a junior and the sports editor for The Piedmont Highlander. He plays basketball for PHS.

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