Veggie Burger

By Charley Hutton, Advertising and Subscriptions Manager

I feel like I need to come clean. 

It seems as though my peers within the J have always been passionate about journalism, have plans to study it in college and have always known that they want to be a reporter. If I’m being completely honest, I can’t relate. I haven’t been dreaming of writing for my school newspaper for my entire life, I haven’t been working towards EIC for as long as I can remember and I certainly am not the best writer that Churchill has ever seen. The thing that led me to the Churchill Observer was… my undeniable inability to do math. Allow me to explain. 

Sophomore year I had smart friends. Sophomore year I also had no spine. So, when all of my friends enrolled in AP Physics, I did too. Remember when I said I couldn’t do math? I wasn’t kidding. Our first quiz was on the second day of school. It was a take-home quiz… and I scored a 9/25. I quickly learned that maybe this wasn’t the class for me. After meeting with my counselor, I had the option of switching into either Guitar 1 or Journalism 1. I’ll let you guess which one I chose. 

The very next day, I walked into Guitar class and prepared to rock and roll. Just kidding. I made my way into the J and never looked back. I immediately meshed with my fellow-writers and was accepted into the community within the staff. Signing up for AP Physics, then dropping out of AP Physics, was the best mistake I ever made. 

High School is full of these spineless moments and bad decisions… or at least it was for me. But more importantly, high school is a bottomless pit of happy accidents. And it’s these accidents that lead you to who you are meant to be. Throughout the past four years, things have fallen into place, even if they made a mess doing it.  

One day, the same year, I had plans to go to a St. Patrick’s Day concert with some of my friends. I hadn’t yet bought the tickets, but we had been discussing it during lunch for weeks. As I was preparing to purchase my ticket, I called my friend to confirm our plans. Instead of getting the greenlight to buy my tickets, she informed me that there was, unfortunately, not enough space for me in the car. For a fifteen-year-old girl, this was the absolute end of the world. The day before the concert, I received a text from an acquaintance of mine, asking if I would like to help her babysit on the night of the concert. All of her other friends were going to be at the concert and I was the only person free. I eagerly accepted the offer and spent the next evening with her. On St. Patrick’s Day, I walked out of a stranger’s house with a new best friend. And she has spent the last two years by my side. 

Junior year, I got called off work one day because we were overstaffed. I begrudgingly spent the night at home with my dad and watched him watch college football. His favorite football team happened to be competing against Oklahoma, and it was supposed to be a big game. I had never heard of the University of Oklahoma before. I mean I guess I knew it existed but I had never heard it said out loud before. Out of plain curiosity but no genuine interest, I asked my dad if they had any school spirit. He laughed out loud and pointed to the student-section of the stadium; Not only did they have school spirit, they practically invented it. A year later, on a whim, I filled out an application to their business school. And six months after that I accepted my spot in the University of Oklahoma Class of 2025. 

My point is, even when I think things are going wrong, they always seem to fall into place. If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it has been a pretty sucky past two years, but we’re better off because of it. That isn’t to say that the millions of lives lost were a necessary sacrifice, not even a little bit. But, we can take it in stride. Because of the virus, I learned how to bake the perfect chocolate chip cookie. I learned how to play my favorite song on the piano. I learned how to appreciate life as it comes, whether it’s on a lunch tray or a silver platter. 

You may be thinking that this has nothing to do with high school itself. How can this be considered a reflection on high school if I don’t even mention school. In reality, it has everything to do with high school. We learn the most outside of the classroom, away from the quizzes and homework and missing assignments. We grow into who we are meant to be from these happy accidents. We find our truest selves beneath the burden of what it means to be a student. When we overcome the inconveniences, the bad math skills, the exclusive friends and the unique happenstances, we uncover ourselves. In order to accept ourselves for who we are, we cannot hate the experiences that created us. 

We are taught that high school is going to be an awkward time, full of catty girls, heartbreak and an emerging coffee addiction. And it is. But that’s the best part. When your emerging coffee addiction accidentally leads you to curing an incurable disease, you will understand. Things work out. You will become who you are meant to be, regardless of what it takes to get there. I know I still have a ways to go. I know this is just the beginning. But I’m getting closer and closer everyday. And I owe it all to the last four years of my life. I will continue to ‘come clean’ as I come to these revelations. I owe it to myself and I owe it to the people around me. The world is waiting for me. Here I come.