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School. This one small 6-lettered word means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. And the group of people isnt just divided into alumni and varsity. Oh, no. The territories are a lot more complex than that. For people, or rather students who actually go to the place for the purpose its supposed to serve (that being academics, if youd forgotten that), it means classes, tests, assignments, grades, and no nonsense. For students who go there to do little (very little) bit of actual studying, it means friends, enemies, partners, rivals, and appearances. For troublemakers, it meansno points for guessing, trouble, making trouble, getting into trouble, and a whole lot of nonsense. For teachers, it means students, lessons, grade sheets, corrections, screaming their lungs out to people who they know wont listen, and I guess the thing still keeping them after the harassment they get, their pay. There are so many groups and kinds of people (also called cliques), it would take, I dont know, about 400 pages to just get them in the right order. But mainly, the above mentioned groups go there (school) to serve some purpose of their existence. Doesnt matter how important or how measly, a purpose. Whereas myself, on the other hand, just go to school for the sake of going to school. Dont get me wrong. It can be good, spending time with your friends, having funor at least trying to (!), et cetera. But, frankly, I admit this to the shock and chagrin of so many people I know, I HATE THE PLACE. As simple as that. No complications, no tragic pasts. Just because of too much of unadulterated idiocy that it sometimes becomes hard to breathe. I took on this attitude 5 years ago. Before that, let me tell you, I loved going to school. Just ask my parents and theyll nostalgically narrate you so many memories. I loved going there and playing, talking, and studying, which didnt seem as that much of a big deal and something we used to consider a surplus. It still is that way. But, I think Im quoting someone, as you get older you get wiser. And all I can can say is: Boy, is that the case for me me or what?! Seriously. 5 years rd

ago, I was in 3 grade. Very little did I know then that school would mean a whole new thing to me just after some measly 365 days or more. I switched schools when I reached 5


grade. I

went from ABC School, a girls school, to XYZ School, a co-educational. There was a little bit of nervousness. But that was just due to the excitement and anxiety of starting at a new place, and not because of the male population. Ive grown up in a household of 5 brothers and no sisters. Boys were not the problem, I can assure you. 5


grade went very calmly in comparison to what

was in store for me in the coming years. God, how I wish someone wouldve put up a sign saying, Stop right there! You dont want to know whats after this! How I wish! Then, the th

holidays were over and everyone was back in school. 6 grade had arrived. A whole new world th

for me. XYZ started their secondary section of classes from 6 grade onwards. All the way up to th

12 . The beginning was the same. Different but, more or less the same. There were a lot of new things. New friends, new teachers, new classrooms, new students, et cetera. The new friends category, for instance, resulted in a lot of people who I was lucky to meet, who were at least 4-5 years older than me, age-wise and grade-wise. Im not bragging or anything but I tend to be better friends with people who are older than me. I dont know why. Just natural tendency. So, that went very well. Other than them, there were people of my own age (more or less).


Commence 6 grade, we seemed to be getting along. But, once you know the ugly truth about them, its never the same. I think someone invented the term frenemies while in school, because thats when you get the first taste of it. Friend-wise, theres that. There were experiences also. Brand-new experiences. Adolescence, display of hormones gone wild, et cetera were also aplenty. More than necessary. Of course, Im only speaking about the latter! Ironically, even though 75% of friends are older than me, Im still a lot like myself and not some 14 year-old clone of an 18-year old. Partially mature, partially teenaged. It was from that time onwards that I slowly and slowly began to confirm my hatred for my alma mater. Fast forward th


from 6 grade to now. Presently, Im a high-school freshman. A 9 grader. Has my hatred lessened? Nope. Its still the sameif not more. Why, I curiously ask the Almighty. Why did I turn out be like this when everyone else is so madly in love with place? Does that make me an outcast? I guess the answer can be that I can (and like to) think past who cheated on whom, who insulted whom, whos backbiting whom, blah, blah, blah. But! Another query: Why cant everyone else be like that? Well, thatthat Im not so sure about. Maybe theyre having too much fun to actually think past all of that. Maybe thats how teenagers are actually meant to be. Not like me, who sits in her study holding a red pen and scribbling this down when shes actually supposed to be studying. Not like me, whos never had a BF or never time-passed anyone or never thought of marrying (ugh!) your present and releasing snide comments about her past, knowing that would make her a social pariah. Not like me, who just studies because her parents want her to, and not because she wants to be a computer engineer or a doctor. So, I guess that makes me a whole different person. Someone who loves friends and will support them, no matter how heinous or how brilliant a deed theyre going to perform. Someone wholl try and explain to her friends to drop the bad-person routine, even though she knows they wont listen and repeat their performances anyway. Someone who suffers from sorry-syndrome. Someone wholl just snap looking at the idiocy around her and consider turning in this human life and becoming a humanoid to live on a fictional planet (yes, you guessed it). Then I sit down and release my actual feelings on paper and listen to my subconscious say: Look, I know this place is pure crap. But thats your story isnt it, wannabe reporter? Humans. Overly predictable yet surprising humans. Their rational and (so) irrational decisions. Oh, yeah. Now you get it, dont you? So, stop grumbling and cussing. Youre bringing the mood down. Go turn on the TV. Its almost Castle time. So, I get up every Monday, drag myself to school, still be disgusted by everything going on around me (I know. Pessimistic me), and come home and count the days until that glorious Sunday, and on another Monday start all over again. Yup. Even though I hate it, I can at least pen down something as this about it. So, heres to a place which I love to hate and sometimes,  just sometimes, hate to love. Different, isnt it? A 14-year old girl hating the thing shes supposed to treasure for life. Very different. But its ok as long as it is. Because different can be many things; it can be new, fresh, crazy, random, irrational, rational, et cetera. It can be

almost everything, but bad. Besides, everyone knows you need a needle to look for in a haystack, otherwise the pile becomes just thata boring pile of hay. Id happily be the needle as long as it sets me apart from all the hay. Ruchi Singh th

4 June, 2010

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