High School Ego Trip

I spent the afternoon at Breck, my alma mater, today. I talked to Mr. Rosenfield, Mrs. Hegg, Mr. Moos, Father Bellaimey, Mr. Hegg, Mrs. Walsh, Ms. Berell, and many others. I also talked briefly with Emily Hawkins, from my class, who is doing her student teaching in her former 4th grade class. Wacky.

Pretty much everyone wanted to hear what I was going to do next year, but since I don’t know, that was hard to explain. Many of my teachers are fairly up-to-date in what I’ve been doing, because my dad works in the Lower School in the same building. I guess he must be proud of me, given how much I have to assume he talks about me.

Most of the conversations boiled down to:

  • We miss you
  • You were a great student
  • You look taller/bigger
  • You look just like your father
  • You sound just like your father
  • You act just like your father

For those of you who have met my father, those last three should be of no surprise to any of you. It’s a curse I learned to live with before it came to pass, since I expected it.

I sat in on one of Mr. Moos’ AP English sections. He hasn’t changed at all. I was worried about interrupting his class, but there were other visitors today, including Drew Dormanen (2 years younger than me, we used to be on the same bus route) and Jenna Egerdal (younger sister of one of my friends). It sounds like Moos would like to retire in a couple of years, so he can go back to writing.

Papa B and I talked about libertarianism, and MacAddiction as a religion. I wish that I had had time to sit in on one of his class discussions, but he had to get work done during his prep period. It seems like a lot of my former teachers are busy getting their curriculum ready to go. Maybe they’re teaching more classes?

I sat in on the first part of Mr. Hegg’s rehearsal for the Upper School Musical. They’re doing Into the Woods again, which first ran my sophomore year. I was the Mysterious Man; my only death scene in 7 years of musical theater. They have some amazing talent in the current batch of female seniors. Seeing the show brought back a lot of memories. I do wish that Mr. Hegg hadn’t introduced me as “Nick Ward, Mysterious Man ’99, Robotics Genius”. Sometimes I’m humble to a fault.

I was able to talk to a couple of students who have applied/are considering applying to Swarthmore. I love it there, so I don’t mind selling it to others. I don’t know many students anymore, since all of the current Upper School would have been in Middle School when I graduated. I know some of the drama kids, because I helped out with the Middle School musicals. I also know a few younger siblings, as well as former students of my father, and random other people.

Anyway, going back to Breck is always a huge ego boost. The teachers apparently still love me, 4, 8, even 15 years later. I know I wasn’t the best student there (in terms of grades) in my class, but I seemed to have left an impression. It’s a weird feeling.

This was also the first time that I went back to Breck and didn’t think of it as “going back to my school”. I guess I’ve finally been at Swarthmore long enough to have moved on, or something. I am certainly very familiar with the place, having spent 11 years there, but I guess I’ve grown out of it to some extent.

3 comments on “High School Ego Trip
  1. stormwynd says:

    I didn’t realize that you were a “lifer” at Breck. I had some friends who were, but I started in 9th grade, which was a very different experience in many ways.

    As for your having made an impression on your teachers there, it doesn’t surprise me that you did, and in a good way. In my years as a high school teacher, I seldom remember who got good grades in a class. It’s the students themselves — the *people*, to be more exact — who stick in your mind, not what number you ultimately attached to their name on your grade sheet.

  2. Nicolas Ward says:

    I feel like a lifer, but there were over 30 people in my graduating class of 2001 who had been there since kindergarten or preschool. I obviously knew many of them.

    Were any of these teachers there when you were? I know Moos is in his 21st year at Breck.

  3. stormwynd says:

    Mr. Moos was there, but I never had him. I had Mr. Hegg for drama twice and Mr. Rosenfeld for Ancient History and US History. It’s cool that they’re still there 20+ years later.

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