Petey Menz ’11
Deep within the supposedly progressive halls of Staples High School lurks a system of hierarchy rank more entrenched and immobile than the Indian caste system. Legend has it that it was this system that convinced Karl Marx that a classless society was necessary.
Well, maybe cafeteria seating isn’t as bad as all that. But there’s no denying that there are laws that govern where people sit during lunch.
It took me a while to learn about these laws. On my first day at Staples, I saw a group of friends almost immediately after I walked into the cafeteria, so I sat down and that was that. Not until a few months later did I realize that for my high school career thus far, I had been confined to the so-called “freshman ghetto,” a section of the cafeteria noted for its low ceilings and conspicuous cinderblock surroundings. And now, a mere three years later, I find myself in the senior section, marked by its expansive high ceilings and near total separation from the freshman, sophomore, and junior parts of the cafeteria.
The odd division of the cafeteria is just one of Staples’ unwritten laws and traditions. We’ve all heard about the infamous rule regarding the tardiness of teachers- if an instructor is more than 10 or 15 minutes late, class is supposedly cancelled. Whenever a teacher is more than two or three minutes late to class, I hear at least one kid bring this rule up, which has no grounding in fact whatsoever. If a teacher is 20 minutes late to class, it certainly means the students won’t be getting very much done that day- it doesn’t mean they’re going to get to go to the cafeteria for the rest of the period.
My personal favorite rule is less of a law in the legal sense and more of a law in the scientific sense- it is an unmistakable truth of Staples High School, and it has led to more instances of tardiness than any other factor: Here it is- there is no consistency to lab lunch. No two teachers will require students to be at class at exactly the same time, the beginning of class may vary from week to week, and third lab lunch may lead to a lunch period that lasts all of five minutes.