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Essays Laryn Hilderbrandt

You know, until you don’t

By Laryn Hilderbrandt

“Who do you want to be? What do you want to do?”

I remember the clicking and tapping sound throughout the computer lab, the whirr of the monitor and the hushed conversations of the children around me. The smell of Expo markers uncapped, the musty but cleaning agent smell that only schools seemed to have. I was a child, seven or eight. Mrs. Vicki walked around the room, preaching about dreams and goals, peeking her slightly grayed head over small shoulders.

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Essays Kacie Brockman Spring 2018 Senior Show

My small, black suitcase

By Kacie Brockman

I remember the continuous packing. Every Friday afternoon I would gather up my clothes for the coming school week and my ratty, stuffed golden retriever, Shadow, who was my riding companion from house to house. I would cram my belongings into my small, black suitcase that rested at the end of my twin-sized bed. I would say my goodbyes to whichever parent I was parting from for those seven days, always ending with a kiss on the cheek and an “I love you.” That was my weekly routine for as long as I can remember. From the age of 5 on, I lived out of that small, black suitcase.

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Emily DeLetter Essays

Traveling through a failing memory

By Emily DeLetter

“I’ve been to Java, Batra, Sumatra, Borneo, Celebes, Bali, Lombok, Sumba, Sumbawa, Flores, Timor, enzoorvort…” 

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Essays James Humphrey

Jimmy with Asperger’s: The Early Years

By James Humphrey

It was a typical preschool classroom in Hendersonville, Tennessee, on a hot August day in 1997. Four-year-old kids were playing with toys and socializing with one another as they waited for someone to pick them up. There was one boy who didn’t have any toys out. He was sitting in a corner, reading a book, alone by choice. This boy didn’t play with toy cars often, but he could point out the difference between a Honda and a Toyota in a parking lot. He saw little reason to socialize with other 4-year-old, and preferred the company of adults. He read books, and scribbled in them – not drawings of far-out space aliens or cartoon characters, but coherent words like “Dual Airbags.”

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Emma Austin Essays

A Bow in the Clouds

By Emma Austin

I sat in the backseat of my aunt’s car, sweating uncomfortably in a hand-me-down dress next to my cousin as we circled the lake on the road leading to Grandma’s driveway. It had been raining all morning, but at that moment the sun was shining brightly, even through the tinted car windows.

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2017 Senior Show Essays Jamie Williams

Almost Famous Friends

By Jamie Williams

My friends aren’t famous to the public by any means, but they’re definitely more famous than me. After being one of thousands of viewers of their online gaming channels for years, and then being trusted enough to moderate those viewers for them, we met for the first time in person at a convention in Indianapolis. They were featured guests; I was a fan who paid to see them.

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Essays Joseph Barkoff Sports

Chi Chi Danger Squirrel: It’s all in a name

By Joseph Barkoff

Photos by Mike Ko of Silicon Valley Design and Gregg Rich of Gregg Rich Photography

In roller derby you either pick the name of your alter ego, or it is chosen for you. When I began skating at my “fresh meat boot camp” I had no idea as to what my name would be. I had a gamertag for online, but it wouldn’t work for derby.

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Essays Shantel-Ann Pettway

The Lesson Pop-Tarts Taught Me

By Shantel-Ann Pettway

With my 10-year-old hands attached to the side of the grocery cart that my god-mother pushed, I suppressed the urge I had to pick up items that weren’t on the grocery list. I loved going to the grocery store as a child because I always had a chance to get my favorite sweet, bubblegum.

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Essays Jacob Dick

Deep Cuts

By Jacob Dick

It was an average looking CD case, like any other my dad left behind. I had pulled it from the shelf by chance as I was searching for something to listen to. I never expected to be holding a portrait of an anthropomorphic hairless cat chained to a dartboard outlined with throwing knives, surrounded by chimera with Satan heads. My 8-year-old mind couldn’t comprehend what I was looking at. This wasn’t like the stoic morbidity of the cow skull on the front of the Eagles Album. This was more unsettling than the crooked old man on Led Zeppelin IV.

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Essays Lindsay Whittington

The Red Scare

By Lindsay Whittington

I’m in Sarah’s living room with a group of people I know–all good friends, I might add–but all I can think about is the chili. It is at the center of my consciousness. Fear of it is gripping my mind and making my stomach clench in uncomfortable knots. My friends are blurs around me. I can’t see them. I can barely hear them. All that is there is the chili, sitting innocuously in its orange pot on Sarah’s kitchen table.