High School Musical {Without the Music}

Q [from RatalieNose]:  Camille, we (meaning your faithful blog stalkers) have not had the privilege to hear much about your high school days. Being in high school myself I would love to hear some stories! So here are a few questions, you can pick whichever ones you want to answer:

1. Of all the dances you went to which was the best? the worst? Who was your date? What was the theme?

2.Were you ever on student council? If so, what position?

3. What was your best year of high school?

A [from me]:  Hi RatalieNose!  Thanks for the questions.  I’ll give a lengthy overview of my high school years in this post today, and will probably return to answer your questions specifically next week sometime.  Thanks for the good ideas!

Would you believe me if I told you I enjoyed high school?

You should—I did.

And in my journals I documented, quite faithfully, every aspect of my life I considered to be important.  I even titled my journal entries, so when somebody decides to someday publish my writings, they’ll have no doubts about what I wanted each entry to be called.  I want nothing left to chance. I thought of good titles, too.  Titles like, Insights by Camille, and The Bitter Ironies of Life, and Prom is a GO!!

Names blotted out so creepies won’t stalk my granny.

I was not, by any stretch of the imagination, popular (but really, is that such a shock, for a girl who titles journal entries?). Attending a high school with a student population numbering in the thousands could afford a wide range of relationships; I had friends, acquaintances, people I knew vaguely, and people I didn’t know at all. In fact, on the night of my graduation (which drew such a huge crowd it had to be hosted on the football field [as is customary with all public high school graduations in Mesa, Arizona]), I was sandwiched between two people I’d never met before in my life.

The nucleus of my friends in high school (Chelsie’s missing because she graduated a semester early and wouldn’t walk with us in May).

I mostly (read: only) ran around with a close-knit group of girl friends, with whom I would occasionally branch out enough to attend a few random parties every so often.  Generally we kept to ourselves, and I was thrilled with our arrangement.  I had neither use nor desire for a vast range of friends—it had been my brief experience that a few top-rate comrades were more valuable than a slew of “meh” buddies.  Probably at some point during high school, the girls I considered my closest friends would have liked to branch out a bit, had I not been so clingy.  It seems only natural that a teenage girl might want to be loved by the entire school.  Me?  I never even considered such treachery.  It wasn’t that I didn’t like all the other kids…I just never felt like I was missing out, so I never tried making new friends.

My mom warned me I was too exclusive, and she was probably right, except “exclusive” implies that there was some sort of closed-off “circle” or club to which nobody else was invited.  In reality, I’m pretty sure nobody else really wanted to join. The fact that I didn’t exactly petition for new members probably makes me seem snobby, but anyway, there it is.

That said, I absolutely believe it is possible to enjoy high school without a) massive quantities of friends, b) partying, c) clear skin or d) illegal substances.  I had/did none of those things yet still managed to enjoy most days at school, while maintaining decent grades and remaining active in sports, music, and student council.  Was I a dork? It depends on what you mean by “dork,” I suppose.  I don’t own a pocket protector (or even know what one looks like); but I was totally random and I’m fairly certain I made a fool of myself at more than one pep rally (part of the student council territory [and my genetic makeup, no doubt]).

At some point in high school (most likely after I started dating when I turned 16), I decided to develop a main part of my personality into an outward utter distaste for boys.  I grew up watching, nay, idolising Anne of Green Gables, and I can honestly say that I strove to play out my relationships with boys in a manner that would have made Anne proud.

My mission statement of the time: “All guys are jerks*.  I will not ask them on dates.  I will not accept any offers of dates.  I will find my life’s purpose, and it will not include a jerk.  *Editor’s note [jerk=guy].”  I was nothing if not thorough.

I talked to boys easily and often enough, but stayed vigilantly outspoken against any manner of chauvinism—real or imagined—that ever came my way.  Oh, I had more than my fair share of crushes, to be sure, but I was always bold enough and loud enough (or perhaps just pimply enough) that nothing ever came of them.  Boys don’t usually like girls who are too snarky.  And I was snarky.

I never kissed a boy until after I’d graduated.  I was 17.  [I never enjoyed kissing a boy until much later.]

In reflecting on these memories, I busted out my stack of journals I have kept faithfully throughout my life.  There are fifteen, ranging from before I could write (I would dictate to my mom or dad), to now.  My journals are basically the pride and joy of my entire life.  It’s fascinating the details I considered important enough to record.  For example, I once drew a comprehensive comparison between my life and that of Éponine, the tragic waif who never could secure the attention of Marius in Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables.

Image from here.

Striking resemblance, no?

Don’t worry.  After a brief period of mourning, I got over my 5-year crush and laid it deeply to rest.  The Marius in my life became a splendid friend, but he was simply too daft to deserve my affection after high school.  All’s well in love and Victor Hugo.

The Original Archives.

There are sixteen journals I’ve filled in my lifetime so far; I consider these the Original Archives of My Life, and take time to re-read various passages every so often.  If there’s one thing I take pride in…it would be my washer and dryer.  But if there are two things I take pride in, the second would definitely be the Original Archives of My Life.  Everyone should keep a journal.

So in answer to the one question you didn’t ask, RatalieNose, I did enjoy high school.  I’ll spend some time over the weekend to think up good answers to your specific questions, so stay tuned next week for more from…

…The Original Archives of My Life.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
This entry was posted in ask me anything, It's All Good, looking back, oh brother what next, The Original Archives. Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to High School Musical {Without the Music}

  1. niki says:

    I find it so fascinating to hear what people were like in highschool. While in it, highschool seemed so important, it was like a mini world. After graduating it’s shocking to see that there is so much more to the world. I like to see who is and isn’t the same after high school. People change so much! I too, enjoyed h.s. Great post!

  2. Jami says:

    I loved it! So entertaining. You did have a HUGE distaste for boys in high school. Hahah, dont’ worry I don’t think you missed out of much.
    AND, who was your 5 years crush? You must tell me when you get down here. OR, if you really dont’ want to, you don’t have to…but I really want you too!

  3. Holly Decker says:

    i too was a journal keeper, and take great pride in the fact that i wrote EVERY DAY in my journal from age 12-18 and then EVERY DAY on my mission. but somehow yours seem to be more… amazing than mine. although i DID draw funny pictures from time to time. and get this, we have something in common- the fact that we never had boyfriends or kissed a boy until after graduation from WW. and thank goodness, seriously- because it would’ve been a mess in high school!
    well it sure was a delight to hear some things from your perspective, (seeing as how i didn’t give you much thought when i did have the pleasure of your presence in my life… you were always just- Adell’s kid sister) and i cant wait to hear more!
    thank goodness to know that eventually you did find poor sweet kyle to rescue you from your jerky boy past and win your womanly warrior heart! :) *sigh* i love happy endings.

  4. Cristin says:

    I also loved Anne of Green Gables and tried to emulate her. How funny.

  5. HeatherPride says:

    I kept a journal in high school. Then I went back and re-read it after I graduated from college and it was so embarrassing that I threw it away. I wonder if that’s how I’ll feel about my blog in 10 years??

  6. Camille says:

    Niki– Thanks for liking it! I’ve been worried it was too long and boring. Phew!

    Jami– Derrick, of course. Foolish, I know, but there it is. His name is on one of the pages I pictured, I think.

    Holly Decker– Well, you’re better than me. I used to set goals to write in my journal every day, but I am a failure and couldn’t keep it up. So instead I set goals like “write in my journal after every important event” and so on. Even then, it took me two weeks to update my journal after I got engaged. Silly.

    Cristin– I knew we were kindred spirits.

    HeatherPride– I won’t lie—some of my journal entries are so embarrassing to read, I’ve considered censoring them with a sharpie, or pulling them out altogether. But then I think, “This is history. I wrote it because I meant it, and may I learn from my idiotic errors. Hopefully I’ll never be so dumb again in my life.” If my house was burning down, I would save my journals before I’d save my children. (Not really, but they’d be second.)

    Tessa– A COMMENT!!! It’s been so long! I’m glad you aren’t mad I posted a picture without asking. I thought about emailing you all, but it was late when I was writing this and I didn’t think I’d get a response in time. Don’t sue me for royalties—I don’t make any money. And you can always start with a journal. Or, you can just use mine and pretend they’re yours. That would be cool.

  7. Tessa says:

    Oh Camille~

    You are such a good writer! That picture brings backs so much memories. High School was awesome, pretty much because of the awesome girls I hung out with. Journals have never been my strength but I now wish I had been better!

  8. anonymous says:

    Do you still write a journal or is this blog your journal now?

  9. Allison says:

    I wish I had kept journals. Who knows what I would have written. It will be great for you to share these with your children someday.

  10. I know who Derrick is! Precious!

  11. Camille says:

    anonymous– I still write in my journal, but not much exciting happens to me anymore, so my posts are fewer and less interesting.

    Allison– I fully intend to share them with my kids. Sort of as a “How Not to Be” guideline. Hopefully they laugh with me, not AT me.

    Emily Merkley– Not that precious. Pathetic is more like it.

  12. Lauren says:

    Oh man. I feel guilty for never filling a journal. I hated writing because my hand would get tired.

    I loved high school too! I don’t even know why. Probably because it was with Ted. Awww.

  13. Lauren says:

    I get afraid to comment on your blog, because I am afraid an anonymous person will diss me again (ducks head and runs for shelter).

    Just know I read EVERY post. Just.Afraaaaid.

  14. WhoNose? says:

    ABSOULOUTELY FANTASTIC!!!! Thank you thank you thank you!!!!!!! I am absouloutely enthralled by The Original Archives of Your Life!! Thank you soooo much for this post!!!!
    Oh, and time for my nosey moment of the day:Your five year crush wouldn’t happen to be Derek Kellis would it???

  15. WhoNose? says:

    Oh whoops I asked my nosey question without reading your reply to Jami. Sorry.

  16. Jami says:

    Derek? I didn’t even know? WOW, you were really good at hiding that. And I wouldn’t say that was pathetic, Derek is a nice guy, and really smart. How come you never went for him?

  17. Camille says:

    Lauren– Some of my journals aren’t *completely* filled either. I would buy (or be gifted) a new, more beautiful journal, and sometimes I couldn’t wait to start the new one. So don’t feel bad.

    Lauren– Yeah, that was rude of the anonymous commenter. I’m sorry you got dissed on my blog. I thought they were fine names though. Not that it matters at all. If it makes you feel any better, the anonymous who came to your defense was the same one who dissed in the first place. So there’s schizophrenia happening, or else someone was just trying to stir the pot…

    WhoNose?– Yes indeed it was. You’re welcome. Thanks for asking all the great questions—you’ve given me lots to write about in the future.

    WhoNose?– No worries.

    Jami– Really? I thought it was obvious. How come I never went for him? I did, for five years, but he was too daft to catch on. That, or, like I said, I just was too snarky and ugly for him to like me. By the time I realised I am a good person and any guy would be lucky to have me, I was over him and didn’t care any more. Anyway, he wasn’t my only crush—just the longest one.

  18. Lindsay says:

    there are more than a few occasions that chelsie’s face needs to be photoshopped into….she would have looked so cute in a blue cap and gown too.

    i had a blast from the HS past the other day, i found Josh Nelson’s cd in my car and woah…i forgot how much i love those songs and concerts at your house…now THOSE were some good times.

  19. anonymous says:

    this was hilarious! wow you’ve always been so funny. your high school experience reminds me so much of my own. i agree, quality friends are better than quantity. i can’t wait to hear more about your high school years!

  20. anon10 says:

    Well, since I haven’t finished High School, I can’t really say much for how I like it. But, I too LOVE journals and If a day goes by that I don’t write, I feel like a lost a portion of my (not so exciting) life!

  21. Heber says:

    Journals are always fascinating. I have some copies of letters I wrote, and “wow” those always surprise me. Thanks for sharing.

  22. Those were good times! I’m so glad I got to be part of them.

    Remember all those times we would sit on your bed and just read from journals? That was the best! We should do it again sometime.

  23. anonymous says:

    haha actually there is more than one person living in this house that comments on this blog:) (unless both of those ppl are me… jk)

  24. firstanon says:

    Schizoprenia is not Multiple Personality Disorder.
    Literally meaning, split-mindedness, as in, split from reality, it is a psychotic condition involving disturbances in thought, affect, motor function, and perception. Hallucinations, delusions, and such.

    But the Schizophrenics are way more fun to work with than the Depressives. MPD is actually extremely rare, i saw not one during my Psychiatric career.

  25. firstanon says:

    Incidentally, IP trackers, my ISP offers two IP addresses per account, for clients who want a different address for a second computer in their home.
    You have to ask for it though. I have not yet done so.

  26. raygon says:

    Great post! Although I am not surprised by your meticulous journaling. You are a good writer.
    The best thing about this post? The clarity of the pictures of your journals. I love them.

  27. Carmen says:

    Amazing that you have been so faithful in your journal writing, although not surprised. I have tried over the years and failed. I guess a couple of entries a month is better than none…
    I too like Anne of Green Gables. Classic.
    High school, well I have to say that I didn’t really enjoy it although I did more so the last year of it only because I was dating Jeff although he was already graduated so it was like I had 2 separate lives. School during the day and then Jeff in the evenings and weekends.

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