Leaving My Mark in High School

At the start of senior year, I had one goal for myself: do something you can be remembered for. This is when an idea hit me. My freshman year, our school had made a lip dub, and, in all honesty, it wasn’t all too good. Not only had they decided to only use television theme songs, but it was also filmed after school on a half-day causing fewer people to show up. I knew that I could put together such a feat that would ultimately be better, but it would take a lot. When the video was complete, I knew that I would have left my mark.

First, I had to talk to some higher powers of authority to have any sort of chance to get this pulled off. I went to the teacher last responsible for the previous lip dub: the journalism teacher, Mr. Ringel. Luckily, I had him as a teacher that year. When I approached him with the idea, he said “Yeah, I think that’d be a great idea. We just have to talk to Principal Manka before we start making any progress, so it doesn’t get shut down”.

Starting with only four people, we put down some songs that would presumably energize people as they heard it played throughout the halls. Narrowing it down to six, we next remixed the songs into one seven-minute track and chose a route through the school to walk that would not only be able to show off our school but would take the same amount of time as the track.

In early November, I met with Principal Manka to discuss our plans. As I explained what we were going to do, he seemed to be weighing out the pros and cons in his head. It appeared every suggestion I was proposing would have gotten the response “Well…” or “Yes but…”. After my explanation, he asked questions that only applied to explanations I hadn’t brought up. I took a deep breath and managed to answer his follow-ups while reiterating the information I previously told him. Finally, with a big smile on his face, he said: “I love it, let’s get started as soon as we can!”

November was a bit slow because it was mostly seniors and we all had to work on our college applications. Come mid-December, things kicked into full gear. The most important thing we needed to do was find a cameraman. Luckily one day the perfect one stumbled into Mr. Ringel’s room.

“Hi, I’m looking for the lip-dub thing or someone to contact about it” he confidently said walking in with a handheld tripod. Ringel and I turned our heads in unison. “Well, that’s reassuring that you’re holding a camera” I mentioned. His name was Will Bloom and he had taken photography for all high school. After a brief explanation of what we’d need him to do, it was clear he was the perfect person for the job. We worked as a trifecta from then on.

I handled the seniors who wanted to physically be in front of the camera. I took the songs and divided them into 34 roughly equal parts meant for two people to lip-sync at once. Then people had a first-come-first-serve opportunity to select which part they wanted. Once selected, Will had hand-drawn a map of the route we were taking, and we had to place where everyone would go. Simultaneously, Ringel was sending emails to all the staff to see who wanted their clubs promoted and if so, how many people would be there so we could control hallway space. Yet again, we found ourselves back on the map all working diligently to make sure every possible space was taken up and not too claustrophobic.

Finally, the day had come. Time to put all that hard work planning this event into a mere half-hour of actual production. It all went by so quickly. When I got to the where the video had ended and everyone was cheering at the top of their lungs, I was filled with excitement and content. Stamford High had redeemed itself from its previous, inferior lip dub. And my impact was able to impact my classmates with school spirit and unforgettable memories as well.


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