Study Hall by Vivian Bowling

I’m a senior in high school with full intent to graduate this June and head off to college in August. In early May I will take my last three AP exams ever, thank goodness, and start my senior project. At this point, I am essentially checked out. The only people more checked out than me are my teachers. They are all enthusiastic to get rid of us just as much as we are to leave high school. Homework assignments are few and far between. Thankfully, my senioritis hasn’t taken over entirely and I manage to get almost all assignments done within about five minutes of receiving them. In the rare case the assignment is of greater length, I am able to complete it after school or work. I am literally so not stressed about school that I am inventing stress for myself. This blog is being written 3 weeks early because I am stressed about it. I actually don’t even think stressed is the correct word. I think boredom would be the better choice. I am so bored that even homework seems enticing. I spent my spring break hoping a teacher would post a random assignment I forgot to do. I have started handwriting and typing notes just to feel something.

Here’s the predicament. For no reason at all. I have a first block study hall. I don’t know who would have the rationale to give me, a senior in high school, a first period study block but alas, someone did. Every other school day I sit for an hour and a half twiddling my thumbs and trying to create activities to occupy my time. I go to the bathroom at least three times where I do absolutely nothing. I attempt to use my phone and remember I get no service in this school. I text my dad and friends random messages that won’t send until the end of the day. I read Wikipedia pages of people I don’t care about. I make to-do lists. I play Wordle and Globle, but then I get irrationally angry that I can’t figure it out and give up. It’s a long and tedious cycle that is eventually interrupted by the bell ringing. Don’t get me wrong, it is way better than doing any class that is even remotely hard and I do enjoy the free time. I remember that in a handful of months I will be an adult and will miss the simplicity of high school, but sometimes I am just so bored.

You might be thinking, “Viv, why not just skip study hall?” Of course I mean the program the school offers where you can request to be excused from your first or last block if you are a senior who maintains good grades. I would never skip a class without permission, I promise. I’ve thought about this but I have my reasons against this idea. The first is that theoretically if I have homework to do, it’s a great time to do it. When I need to study for the occasional test it is awesome. I feel so prepared. The next reason is that I would choose to sleep in on odd days and on even days (when I do have a normal class during the first block). It will be impossible to wake up at different times. And finally, the most important reasoning is parking. I am not sure if you have ever had to handle the high school oval, but it is seriously a competition. I would argue that 400 kids are trying to park every day, and there might be about 150 spots within reasonable walking distance. If I can’t get a parking spot, I will go home. I have done it before and I will do it again. I leave my home at 7:35 to park on the oval, 55 minutes before the start of school. If I had the luxury to start odd days with second block at 10:00, I would never be able to park again. I would have to parallel park, which for a 17 year old, might be the hardest thing to accomplish. Or, I would have to park a casual 15 minute walk away, so what’s even the point of having first block free anymore? I could make this into a complaint about how I wish the high school had a parking lot, but that sounds like a broken record. So for now, I am thankful for my first block study hall and will enjoy the rest of my senior year, albeit bored. 

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