The days leading up to the carnival were full of me busy studying and not being able to have fun or do much else besides schoolwork. Also, my Biology SAT2 subject test was on the same morning as the carnival. I decided I would need a break from studying for finals and regents for a day after finishing the SAT2. At the carnival, I went on every single ride with many different friends. My favorite ride was the dream catcher. I went on that ride so many times throughout the day. This year, the Delusion ride was free unlike last year when it was introduced. This year, so many friends came so many times we had to split up and I hung out with different friends all day. Another, fun part of the day is when my friends and I went in the mirror house and the fun house and raced in there even though we weren’t really supposed to. We jumped over all of the obstacles; and once, I even got yelled at by a guard. The song in this link, “Butterfly Effect” was a very popular song by Travis Scott during this time. During the carnival, I took out my phone on one ride and blasted the music from my phone. Later in the day, I got stuck in a pool donut tube when it was stuck at my shoulders. My friends tried to get it off me, but when they tried to lift the tube off, they lifted me along with the tube too. Many people started looking at us like we were stupid but it was definitely a memorable moment because of how funny it was. After the carnival, a bunch of my friends and I went to another friend’s house to hang out. We got pizza and at one point two friends were arguing over which club, Model Congress or DECA was better because they both made board for the clubs. I had a preference towards congress because I was more involved in that club even though I was in both clubs. Though, I didn’t start arguing because it was so funny watching both of them fight for no reason.
Out of all of these events, Battle of the Classes was definitely in the top three best of the year. It was the one event that pretty much everybody, no matter what grade was looking forward to. Even during the school day on the day of battle, everyone was so hyped up for the biggest event of the year from what I heard. Unfortunately, I was on a field trip at the Guggenheim Museum on the day of battle and wasn’t able to be in school to experience the school day of battle. Instead, I was exploring artwork in NYC. After I got home from NYC, I had a orthodontist appointment that I couldn’t get out of causing me to miss the first few battle events. I missed one of the events I was supposed to be in, which was hungry hungry hippos, but I was still able to be in my other two events, wheelbarrow and the three-legged race. Even though I wasn’t in it, the dance battle was my favorite event of battle. This was because many of my friends were in the dance and helped choreograph it. Also, the ninth grade dance was definitely the best of all the grades, and honestly the ninth graders should’ve won that event. My favorite song from the freshmen battle dance was “Clique” by Kanye West because all of my friends were in that dance and it was so cool. It resembled an entire squad coming ion to the battle. Also, at the end Ben Kim, one of the best dancers in the Class of 2020 jumped and did a split when the beat ended which caused every single grade to cheer for that one move. After the events ended, I got many pictures with my friends then went to get pizza after. We had to walk to the pizzeria and had a lot of fun after.
In the beginning of the year, I had made the mistake of not being a chair, which is a judge of a committee. Though, I got to be a clerk with my friends and basically I was supposed to keep the time while my other friends were the chairs. We had another clerk too so I didn’t have to do much. Because of this, I got out and helped one of the board members prepare bills for the next event of the congress. This congress experience was so different compared to going to foreign congresses at other high schools such as Lawrence, East Meadow, Oceanside, and Hewlett because I was on the judging side of the debates and not actually debating like everyone from the other schools. I made so many new friends at this congress compared to others because it was my own congress. It also felt different being so free to do anything because it was my own congress and I didn’t have to do much. Before the congress started, I was in charge of playing music through the speakers because I had a really good playlist of all the new, hit music. One particular song was so popular at the time that I remembered people staring to rap and dance with the beat as they came into the room. The song was called Bounce Back by Big Sean. It was one of the top songs on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. In the two days of the congress, I heard that song repeat multiple times from people's speakers as they played the music during lunch and other activities. I also remember that this one guy from a different school had a huge speaker the size of a drum and he turned up the volume all the way and played Bounce Back once. I even saw the sides of his speaker and the bass was making the speaker vibrate. Even though I didn’t get to debate, I’d still say this was one of my favorite congresses because I got to feel the other side of the debates and see what it was like when we did debate. Also, after the congress ended, I went out to a diner in Manhasset called Landmark Diner with a bunch of upperclassmen and the board and it was so fun to hang out with all of the other members of congress and have a fun time after a very fun congress at our own school.
I was so stressed when midterms week came up. Being my first midterms I ever took, I had no idea what to expect of it. I thought it was going to be the hardest few tests I ever took, though after taking them I realized how easy they were compared to how difficult I thought is was going to be. The fact that we got the entire week off was the best part because after taking the test I could come home, eat, sleep, and then study without worrying for time. Also, because I didn’t have any midterms on Friday, I had two days off before the weekend started to hang out and appreciate that I got through my first midterms at Herricks. The song, “Black Beatles” by Rae Sremmurd was so popular at that time and was a big part of my study routines for all of my midterms. I played “Black Beatles” on repeat over and over while studying for hours without breaks. During the winter season, the song Black Beatles was used in the Mannequin Challenge which went viral all over the internet.
This night was so special because it was my first homecoming that i got to experience as a high schooler. The pep rally in the high school is a lot different than in the middle school. I didn’t even realize a Homecoming King and Queen would be crowned until it actually happened at the pep rally. It was actually much better and there was way more spirit. Also, I found it cool how all grades had their own sections unlike the middle school. This would also come to be a great detail in battle as well. This year I payed attention to the football game again Calhoun and made jokes with other classmates saying “I eat Calhoun for breakfast” and such even though we clearly lost 31-0. I did most of the same stuff that I did the other years coming to homecoming but it felt different this year as a high schooler. I was more involved in the events such as banner night, spirit week, and watching the game. Also, it was a lot more convenient that I didn’t have to go far to get to homecoming because it was at the high school. One of my favorite parts of this day was during the pep rally when the running man challenge, a dancing challenge popular at that time played and many teachers and students had to awkwardly dance to that. This was by far the best homecoming experience I have ever had.
The congress at Oceanside High School was one of my favorite congresses this year. This was one of the most eventful weekends of the year. This congress took place right after midterms ended so everyone was really excited to go to this congress and have some fun. On the bus ride there, some of the freshmen boys and I connected my speaker to a laptop and watched some Rick and Morty in the back of the bus. When we got there, we walked into a gigantic theater three times the size of the Herricks auditorium. Housing at Oceanside was also so memorable. All of the herricks freshman boys managed to get into the same house. We were up almost the entire night hanging out with each other. Even the student who was housing us fell asleep while we were up. I forgot to bring a blanket and I was so cold all night. When I woke up in the middle of the night, I remembered the house has heated floors on the lower level. I got a small pillow and slept next to the sofa under the blankets that my friends had hanging off the couch. Then, when we woke up I unintentionally scared my friends so bad because they had no clue I moved there in the middle of the night. The song in this link now is explained because of the second day during the lip sync battles for entertainment. Herricks had no clue what to put on so we just threw two guys onto the stage with a few freshman boys as backup dancers to the Barbie Girl theme song. The two juniors were just walking around in circles and hanging on each other because they had no idea what to do and all of the freshman boys were doing random, funny dance moves. The performance was one of the worst things I had ever seen and it was just a big jokes. The reaction of the judges which consisted of the Oceanside Model Congress board was hilarious too because they were speechless at how bad we were.
This night was almost as memorable as my first Herricks Homecoming while attending the high school. Our grade had went against the odds and won first place for the banner. The theme for this year’s homecoming was America. So, the freshman decided to paint a picture of America’s greatest attractions from coast to coast. Out banner consisted of the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, the Radio City Music Hall, Mount. Rushmore, Las Vegas, the Golden Gate bridge, the Hollywood sign, and features the Herricks Highlander standing above the Radio City Music Hall on the East coast. There was also a big blimp with a banner behind it that said “HERRICKS CLASS OF ‘20” to represent our grade. I believe a detail that really helped us gain first place were the cotton balls we used as clouds scattered throughout the skies in the banner. It added a great touch in picturing the fluff of a real cloud and added an three dimensional look to the background that would’ve been boring without it. All of this was supervised and couldn’t have been done by a girl in our grade named Katie Bae who has a great artistic view. Originally, I was only really going to go to get some pizza but then I decided to help with the cotton balls because I am otherwise not artistically talented. The most vivid memory I have of that night is when I was playing football in the courtyard while listening to the song Controlla by Drake from his then recent album views which is in the attached link and fell over one of the stone benches. I had a huge cut and not even one of the extra large bandages could fit the cut. I had to get two extra large bandages, cut the sticky end of one side, out them together so the two cotton pads were next to each other and had to stick that on my leg.
Us ninth graders expected Semi-Formal to be a lot like the middle school dance and the boat trip from the summer of eighth grade. The two middle school dance trips were very fun because of various dance battles, songs, events that occurred, teachers that did memorable stuff, and the overall experience of having our first school dances. I clearly remember my favorite song from that time being Jumpman by Drake and Future, so when that song came on I was very excited and ready to dance. The food at Semi-Formal was definitely better than the middle school dances and there were also a lot more people, but a less crowded space because it was in the new gym. I had so much fun dancing with friends from all grades and taking pictures with all of these new upperclassmen I met and all of my other friends. During this time, I started making so many friends because I was introduced to many upperclassmen from classes, clubs, and other friends. This was one of the nights where I really began to befriend many of them.