• Allie and Ryan

    Allie & Ryan

  • Allie and Ryan 2

    Allie & Ryan

  • Allie and Ryan 3

    Allie & Ryan

  • Ryan and Allie 4

    Allie & Ryan

  • Ryan and Allie 5

    Allie & Ryan

Friday, March 25, 2011

What I was like in High School

I saw this post over at Mandy's Blog and wanted to write one too! To be honest, I really did hate high school. I am one of those people who came into their own in college… I didn’t care what people thought of me anymore and I made my strong friendships there. But I did ok in high school for the most part.

Actually, I went to two high schools. In the morning I attended what we in Jersey call a “vo-tech” or a vocational technical high school. My votech was a little different as they also offered an arts program. In the morning, when I went, there was acting and musical theatre, then in the afternoon there was dance. So I had the option of taking the bus to my “sending high school” aka my regular academic one and then taking another bus to votech, which was a process that went from almost 6:20am-7:40am. OR. My dad would leave the house at 6:40am and drop me off at votech and I would nap on the stretching mats for an hour until class started. Guess which one I did more?

So votech saved me. Those people were amazing. They were not only all uberly talented, yes there was an audition process to get in, but some of the kindest and most open people. We were from all over the county, most of us from different sending schools, but we bonded! Artists can be that way sometimes :P Out of the 12 people in my freshman class we grew and shrunk through to senior year, but in the end only three of us were there together all four years. There was level one, which was the first year you were there, and level two which were any years after that. So I was a level two for three years. Some people don’t go to votech freshman year; others come in during their sophomore or even junior years… so our class was always fluctuating. But out of that dozen or so I still talk to nearly all of them. One was a bridesmaid in my wedding, and at least five more were present at my wedding.

We would spend the morning doing Meisner exercises like walking the grid or repeating exercises. There were days of diction classes, technical theatre, movement, dancing for actors, singing for actors, monologues, and when we were in productions actual rehearsals. We did an informal and formal show a year. Informals were in the studio and involved a monologue, sometimes a song or dance number, and were smaller. Formals were full scale productions. I was in Exploring Shakespeare, Class Action, The Laramie Project, and Joseph Andrews. We would also tech for the other classes, level one teched level two, level two teched MTs (musical theatre), and MTs teched for level one. So I got to run lights, manage props, and other things. During formals we’d have rehearsals at night, usually around 6-10pm, on top of all of our normal days!

Once I left that bubble though, I went to my high school. I didn’t take any electives *(including gym!)* since votech took those from me. I did go crazy and try lots of sports as I never did them growing up. Freshman year I played tennis, did cheerleading (and lettered for varsity), and track and field (pole vaulting and long jump). Sophomore year I cheered again, Junior year I quit cheer and joined the swim team which I carried into Senior year. Often times I would go from a swim meet to votech rehearsal after trying in vain to not reek of chlorine and our British costume lady Kate would yell at me for making the smell stay in our rented costumes! Freshman year I was in the chorus in Sugar, the musical that my regular school put on. So not the same as votech. I never did the show there again.

Dating, eh not so much. I dated one guy freshman year (he was a junior at the time) but he put way too much pressure on me and then ditched me for a good friend of mine when I would not comply. Nice right? I had some vacation flings but otherwise that was about it. I did have a crush on one guy all four years, not the one I dated, but to this day he never knew! Haha. I was a total dork and very awkward around most guys. We also had been together since 2nd grade in a small town, it just was not going to happen!

For me, romance was not meant to be in high school. Maybe that is half the reason I was so shocked when in my junior year of college Ryan came into my life like he did. It just was not the sort of thing dorky me had happen! I had convinced myself, through years of experience, that I was undatable and uncool. Why would someone so attractive be interested in me?

But, that is a post for another time.

My best friend Sam was a year above me and did swim team with me. Jay went to votech and my sending school with me and was my other best friend, but he graduated early. Senior year was rough without them but I made it. We had open campus lunch sophomore year on up, so we could walk/drive to tons of different restaurants. It was wonderful. Senior privileges fourth marking period were awesome too; if you had a study hall you could leave campus then too. My last marking period was kind of awesome.

See, senior year I could finally take electives again. So I opted for Wood Shop I. I had built some sets at votech and wanted to learn more. When I walked in to class the first day people thought I was lost. Not only was I the only senior in the class, I was the only female! I was the lone lady in a class that was 90% freshman boys.

Oh boy.

The teacher seemed impressed I was there, but it wasn’t that big of a deal to me. But he retired after midterms and they didn’t find anyone to replace him. So we all were given a study hall. I already had one of those…so my schedule became amazing. I would go to votech in the morning, then I had study hall, lunch, study hall… which means from 10:30am-1:30pm I didn’t have to be on campus! I would drive to the mall or meet my mom for lunch, then go back for senior English, creative writing, and psychology. Hard right? :P

It was senior year before I could drive as NJ driving laws kind of stunk, but at least I got to drive in high school! I had to use street parking as I did not have my license the first day of school when they did the lottery for spots. Why not? Well, I turned 17 the second day of school, so I missed it by one day!

So I was the drama geek who tried a lot of sports and different things before hitting her stride in college when she just struck to the acting thing.

I don't have many pictures I can access from work but...

Votech Kids - summer (during college) reunion

Votech kids again

This picture appeared in the paper when Class Action was about to start, my show Sophomore year. My hair looks like a very weird color but it was the lights, I promise!

What were YOU like in high school??


  1. I had one of those annoying bus rides too!! They totally sucked and my mom ended up taking me more than I rode the bus to school. You were luckier than me though and really enjoyed school :) It looks like you had great fun too!!

  2. Oh my gosh I was shocked when you started talking about votech & even more shocked when you said new jersey! Husband & I are from NJ! We both attended a vo-tech! Ours was a full day vo-tech so it was a bit different. I was in the bake shop & he was in the building trades shop. I looooved the performing arts kids! They were all so talented! A few of them are actually doing very well with that in their college years. I haaaated my district school. It was much easier making friends with kids from other counties.


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