Remember the people, not the story

by Anna Etra

I wanted my senior column to be epic. I wanted to have the one senior column where people talked about it for years after. I tried. I wrote 600 words comparing my six years at Harvard-Westlake to the corresponding six seasons of “Lost,” but ultimately let Sammy cover that one. I picked up my 10th grade Choices and Challenges letter a few weeks early to get some inspiration from my ambitious sophomore self. I talked about the fact that even though I joined multiple committees and councils senior year, the yearbook didn’t accurately reflect how active I was in the Harvard-Westlake community. I took a stroll down memory lane recounting the significant moments of my young Harvard-Westlake career.

Luckily, I will always have those columns for me. But for this, I have something else in mind, a combination of them.

When I come to think about it, there are surprisingly few things I regret about my Harvard-Westlake experience. I mostly regret not trying enough new things and utilizing the facilities that were available to us.

On the other hand, there is so much I won’t regret. I don’t regret the extra classes I took in 11th grade, I don’t regret my 10 minutes of seventh grade Chorus and I don’t regret my three years on the Chronicle, Opinion section represent!

I cannot write my senior column without saying that I wore a lot of neon clothes at the Middle School, and I was inept at opening my locker in eighth grade. Shoutout to the Charmin Ultra jingle and the scratch and sniff versions of Shakespeare. I only went to one semiformal, and enjoyed the various day trips to the beach, Universal Studios, Magic Mountain and Disneyland.

Don’t worry, there are no spoilers ahead. But there is a major lesson I learned from the finale of “Lost.” Not only the fact that staying up extremely late is not beneficial, but although there was so much mystery in the show, the plot line was confusing and convoluted, and relatively few people remained loyal to the show, “Lost,” like Harvard-Westlake, was about the people. The people I met here, and the memories I made at Harvard-Westlake will be unparallel to those formed when I travel to New York on Aug. 22. I won’t be able to replicate being an honorary swim team member. My nightly sleepovers with my roommate will not compare to my high school school night sleepovers. But, on that airplane ride to school, I won’t be wearing my light blue Lacoste shirt, fold-over maroon Hard Tail skirt and black Juicy flip-flops as I did when I boarded flight 1992 to 700 North Faring Road.

In six years, I will have attended five graduations, taken nine AP tests, learned all 280 of my classmates’ names (and the ones who left) had 40 teachers, took 46 classes, played four sports seasons, experimented with eight electives, attended 24 Chronicle layouts, filled out 15 requests for excused absences at the Upper School, missed 216 periods 10th through 12th grade and sat through one fake detention. And then, I graduated.