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Double the Distraction Life With Second Semester Siblings

Emily Wolfe

In my family two is the magic number: it is the month that four of the five family members were born in and the number of dogs we have. And, finally, the number of second semester seniors who live under our roof.

Growing up as a younger sister to twins I have learned the good and bad that come with the job: because of the two of them, I know a bigger portion of upperclassmen in the halls. I also know the “5 steps to a 5” on the AP Biology test.

But with their talk of APs and the college applications coming to a close, the wrath of the older twins has ventured to another side of the spectrum; just when I start to buckle down with my grades and my future, they are full speed ahead on the ride of their high school lives: second semester.

And because the majority of the kids in my household are second semester seniors, my parents can sometimes forget what it was like before, when the days were not filled with after-school lunches and Netflix marathons.

By February, their being on time to school became less likely than finding an empty sandwich line at lunch. Well, at least that is how it rolls in my house. And no matter how many times I can yell at them to get up, or even get my parents involved, there is just no hope that I can make it to first period on time. These past couple of months I have grown extremely thankful for my teachers who don’t count a tardy at 7:33, because if they did, I would have started to lose credit weeks ago.

I have yet to figure out what causes my siblings to wake up at 7 when we need to leave at 7:10, but I am sure that it is not the loads of homework they are piled with night after night.  Maybe it is that somehow, somewhere, they were told that their attendance is voided just because they are seniors. Well, if that is a true statement, then I am sorry because the gift is not extended down to your sophomore sister. My teachers still count tardiness and there is no “second semester sophomore” excuse that I can use, so we still need to get to school on time for my sake.

According to the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, “The average twelve to seventeen-year-old watches about 23 hours of TV per week.” However, I believe that second semester seniors bring that average way up for the rest of us working students.

But there are two different issues with the countless hours of watching television as a second semester senior, and each issue is equally yet uniquely annoying to the sophomore across the hall.

First there is that feeling of despair as I look across the hall, while slaving away at 30 exponent problems, only to see the computer in my sibling’s room open to Netflix playing a new season of “Dawson’s Creek.”

Then there is the trouble with live TV. This means my second semester siblings inviting four or five friends over to watch “Pretty Little Liars” every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. Because it doesn’t matter if I have to study a new tense in Spanish, or complete stoichiometry practice problems: the people downstairs on my couch luring me in to the television set with their voices and conversations about the upcoming episode are stronger and more successful than my history teacher posting my homework on Blackboard and saying it is due in the upcoming class.

Either that, or I just can’t get my homework done because of shrieks and screams after every new note from ‘A’. But either way, no mom, I cannot invite all of my friends over to watch TV on a Tuesday night, I am not a second semester senior, and I have things to do.

There is not one senior who can carry all of these symptoms of senioritis in their cartoon character backpack. Some have only one free but still watch countless seasons of TV shows each week; some go out on weeknights but are on time to school. But that is why the trouble is double – take a second semester senior, and then make sure he or she has a twin. And if those twins are your older siblings, like me, then find me so that we can be allies in the fight against senioritis, because with two second semester seniors, they automatically win any battle against me, the one working sophomore.

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About the Contributors
Caroline Cohen
Caroline Cohen, Managing Editor
Caroline Cohen ’15 is a team player. And in true MVP fashion, she has made a name for herself on Inklings with her pep and strong work ethic. Since taking Intro to Journalism freshman year, she has put in countless hours of hard work and, this year, even snatched up the coveted position of Blue Staff managing editor. Cohen’s dedication stems from her passion. She loves writing, especially thoughtful opinion pieces and interesting feature stories. And the more daunting the challenge, the more willing she is to tackle it. The story she is most proud of is an investigative piece about snow day policies, for which she interviewed Superintendent Elliott Landon. Cohen’s favorite part of Inklings is, naturally, the team spirit. “I never really played sports, so Inklings is my team,” said Cohen. “It’s a way to be more involved in our school and form close bonds with lots of people.” Cohen’s love of teamwork is especially evident when she talks about her goals for her final year of Inklings. Number one on the list is writing a “twofer,” or working with another writer on a story with a challenging topic. And like any other great sportswoman, Cohen is always looking out for the other members of her team. Her “claim to fame,” as she puts it, was coming up with the idea to have editors chip in for a refrigerator for the Inklings room to store snacks in after school. Cohen especially loves the support and positive feedback from her Inklings-reading fans. “I had a copy of the graduation issue at my house, and my friends saw it and were amazed,” she said. It’s sure to be another great season for Caroline Cohen.
Emily Wolfe
Emily Wolfe, A&E Editor
Emily Wolfe ’15 personifies the word creative. In addition to playing multiple instruments, Wolfe sees her role as an A&E editor as yet another expression of her creativity. Playing violin, piano, and teaching herself guitar, it’s no wonder she loves the creative freedom of writing and editing for Inklings. Wolfe’s interest in Inklings started when she decided to make graphics for the paper after going to one of the after-school meetings for people who want to contribute their artistic abilities to the paper. As soon as she started making graphics, she decided that it was her calling to write for Inklings. It is evident that Wolfe’s passion for music translates to her passion for English and writing for Inklings. It’s all about creative freedom.  In music, the notes and chords come together to make a beautiful piece.  The same holds true for editing. All of the articles and pictures come together to make an entertaining and informative news source for the community at Staples and beyond. Not only does she feel that Inklings gives her the opportunity to express her creative side, she loves being able to learn more about her peers. “I like how we get to work with other people” she said. Wolfe believes that the interviewing process is a great way to get to know the community of Staples High School. Wolfe is ready for more creative and challenging assignments writing and editing for Inklings.“Inklings is just a fun way for me to be creative,” Wolfe said.

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