As my time at Harvard-Westlake comes to an end, I’d like to share one of the most important things I have learned.
“The little things matter,” Coach Scot Ruggles would constantly tell us. “We can’t do anything around here until we do the little things right.”
And while Ruggles would often talk about how this applies to the real world, like getting a job, I only recently realized this phrase applies incredibly well to my experience at Harvard-Westlake as a whole.
It is easy at Harvard-Westlake to get caught up in the end goal of getting good grades and getting into college, but if you don’t have at least little bits of fun throughout your day, your experience is going to be awful.
One way I found fun was through carpooling with others. Between not driving through junior year, and my brother taking our car to baseball after school every day this year, I rarely drive myself home. And so, I was forced to find rides with many others who also make their way over the hill to the Westside.
While it sometimes was a hassle to ensure I always had a ride home, those 40 minutes everyday added up to one of my favorite parts of high school.
During football season, I would ride with Mike Mapes ’16 and Brendan Sanderson ’16, along with other underclassmen who lived in the Pacific Palisades after football, blasting music while winding down Mulholland in the “Lades-mobile.”
I also would often ride home with Bryce Terman ’15 and Nick O’Brien ’17, who also would typically blast music, but typically music O’brien had produced the night before, which always made for interesting car rides.
And most commonly after football season, I would ride home with Jackson Beavers ’15. Time with Beavers was especially rare since he is very busy, and had to stop playing football this year after a series of severe concussions, making carpooling with him that much more special. In addition to talks about the latest rumors, with him being on Prefect Council and me being on Chronicle, throughout the year he taught me how to freestyle rap. Yes, that’s right, most car rides home with Beavers would just be a back and forth of him showing me how to rap, and me attempting to respond to his verses.
Sure, I will be over 3,000 miles away from most of those people in a few months, and I will never have a career rapping, but those little moments everyday have added up to make my high school experience that much better.