Another chapter of your lives have been written, and I suppose that’s a good thing, because the last four years were as formative and eventful as we will ever have, and now is no time to stop writing. I’ve been told that the great things is life go fast, and that you don’t really understand what they mean until they are long since past. I suppose the only reason I remember that is because it rhymed, but that should not take away from its overall message. What I am trying to get at is that ending high school is a major crossroad of our lives. Now, I am not going to go on and tell you that it is the grandest event our lives will ever experience, or that it will even crack the top 10 on the list, but take that as a good thing. The future holds many things for us, and that should make you both anxious and full of anxiety. This whole high school thing was kind of a tease. It’s as if someone put you here and said, ‘Ok, now go and work hard, have fun, make the best of yourself, and the best of friends, and when it seems to be hitting its pinnacle-we are going to send you off to repeat the same process. Hell, we might do it another few times after that.’ Yet we still made the most of it, and ended up doing alright for ourselves in the end.
I have said repeatedly that the class of 2006 is the great class to go through Fenwick High School. We set records on tests, have a stellar track record (but an ironic lack of outstanding success in track & field -go figure!) and the caliber of colleges and universities we will be attending next year, unparalleled. There has never been another class more decorated with honors. We’re like an admiral or something… When most previous classes are looking for one person to go to Harvard, we come in and overflow the system with a kid who not only gets in, but also gets damn near a full ride, (and a rousing applause at an assembly, which he so deservingly…deserved) which seems unprecedented by modern standards. But this is not Joe Edmonds’ class, (say that three times fast,) it seems that every single person in the class of 2006 has already done amazing things, and there is not a single person that does not have a bright future ahead of them. The overall character and class of the seniors is as remarkable as our accolades. Sure, not everyone rises to the podium of academic excellence (myself included, begrudgingly) but it seems that those people do not have the preverbal ‘drop off’ in excellence that the top tiered students do. The class of 2006 is possibly the most ubiquitous class in terms of sociology, so much so that there were a few prom groups with greater populations than Tokyo (and their transportation were apparently a sardine cans on wheels.) Seriously though, trying to chronicle all the good things about this class is a daunting task that would take several rolls of parchment to impart upon you, so let me tell you all about the bad things…Just kidding, but I had you there for a second didn’t I?
I remember a few great things from my tenure here at Bishop Edward Fenwick Dominican College Prepatory School. I recall the first day in school when I was fortunate enough to prepare myself on how a lock worked, and then showing the technique to a small gathering of kids trying their locker doors off the hinges. I remember the ungodly long and hot honors convocation at the end of freshman year- when I asked myself when hell became elevated, full of bleachers and in the Fenwick Auditorium- and when a mere two years later when we were in uproar on how they split the marathon up and that we all had to go back to classes. The memory of Ms. Speer strikes vividly in my mind; she made me hate and love English, sometimes at the same time, during third period freshman year, while recruiting me to join the forensics team every time I had a question. I remember how easy it was to make friends, the majority of which I will have for the rest of my life, after being scared to death I wouldn’t be able to do it. I remember the stares of confusion the first day of sophomore year when I arrived nearly a foot taller then I had left the year before. I remember the camaraderie of the gym and caf during finals week, and declaring war against my mortal enemy Herff Jones. I remember seeing the legend of Daddy first hand in Speech, which is the exact same legend every class had seen before us and will see after us. I remember Ms. Senese’s 11th period fine arts class, all the great people, and, well, I’ll refrain from commenting on the class. I forgot the boring classes, but not how to get through them. On that note, I will not forget to make the play list that I will listen to through a protruding white headphone in my shirtsleeve. I suppose I remember Poms winning state…I remember learning life lessons, the hard way. I remember all the little secrets I had on how to make a paper appear longer that it actually was. Thank god that I have forgotten all the papers I have written. I remember Dr. B’s off kilter comments, and working my way up on the Wick, and Internet radio. I remember a really delicious grilled cheese sandwich I made junior year. Man was that some fine eating. I remember the ninjas, and the bat that threatened to bring them down. I remember Kyle Hope turning on the TVs to watch “Shock and Awe” and the impromptu and premature celebration that the war was over during lunch. I remember Banuas and power naps during prayer experiences. I remember great assemblies (Pep Rallies, Christian rock music videos and Matt Kelly) and disasters (like being yelled at the end of the SADD presentation a few weeks ago and the class of 2006 abstinence day, which I was forced to attend despite the fact that I gave my word to stop at third.) I’ll remember Kairos, twice. I won’t forget the White Sox winning it all and the month of Ross Gloading around the school. I remember watching the Pope be elected Papam in the library and Fr. Saucier telling me he would take the name Benedict a mere minute before Ratzinger shattered his dream. I won’t forget the first day when we were told to look to our left, and our right, and write one off those people off the final graduation list, and then this year being told that those words were never said. (We showed them!) I will always remember how fast word can get around about anything. The social networking skills at our school, staggering. I’ll remember the dances and the technical difficulties that you could count on. The characters that this school has produced, I remember every last one of them to a T. I will never be able to forget the Laity. (If you didn’t catch that one, its what we in journalism call a ‘shout-out’.) I remember loosing my voice and banging on buckets at hockey games. Complaining about lack of school sprit only to be happily proven wrong. I’ll never forget any of those things and so many more, and though there were some bad times here, the great times are what really matter, and those are manifest in number.
We will all remember a million things that happened in these last four years; they were pretty confusing, yet amazing times. And sure, we might say that we should have done this, or that, in retrospect, but you should never regret the last four years of your lives, because every last one of you has more than a handful of things to be extremely proud of. That is something that all of you need to remember.