Saturday, May 24, 2008

Graduation Shishmaref Style

There are a few things I remember about my high school graduation:

-It was really long.

-My grandmothers sat in the front row.

-I tried to smile the whole time and clap for every graduate because I was in the front row.

-It was really long.

-Brian Winterbottom played his gameboy through the entire thing. I mocked him, but secretly I was envious.

Lucky for me, I get to relive high school graduations every single year!!! Wahoo!!! I thought I would take this opportunity to compare Shishmaref graduation with my Lewiston High School graduation.


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LHS graduates: 363
SHS graduates: 4


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Number of cakes at LHS graduation: 0
Numbers of cakes at SHS graduation: 10+


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We took the seniors into the kitchen before the ceremony to preview the cakes. I encouraged them to sample the cakes ahead of time. Because they're used to ridiculous instructions from their spastic social studies teacher, they humored me.


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This senior actually tasted the frosting. I was proud.


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Since I was married to one of the cake servers, I scored the world's largest piece of pineapple upside down cake. It was good. The man who gave it to me was good-looking. He winked at me.*


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Number of diplomas given to small children at LHS graduation: 0
Number of diplomas given to small children at SHS graduation: Uh, I don't know exactly, but it was about 10.

The preschool kids are awarded "diplomas" at the beginning of the graduation as the replacements for the senior class. It's very cute. One of the little girls had to be dragged on stage while sobbing hysterically. Luckily, she recovered.


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Choir at LHS graduation: Uh, some performance choir. They sang a song. I think it was from a musical.
Choir at SHS graduation: The Lutheran Church Senior Choir


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Number of kids eating popsicles at LHS graduation: 0
Number of kids eating popsicles at SHS graduation: about 6

Seriously, one of the sixth graders wandered in from the store with a box of popsicles and started passing them out during the middle of the ceremony. My jaw dropped. Only in Shishmaref would this every happen (kids also bring pop and candy to church, but that's a story for another blog post).

I was busy being disgusted when the sixth grader offered me one of the popsicles. I shrugged and accepted it (when in Rome...). You'll be happy to know that I waited until the lights were out during the slideshow before I ate it.

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What I did during the graduations-

LHS: sat in the front row with a frozen smile plastered painfully on my face.
SHS: sat in the audience behind a laptop. I ran the speaker's PowerPoint Presentation, the Slideshow, and the music from my laptop.

(Note to astute readers: this picture was taken before the popsicle.)


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One of the best part of graduation is watching the receiving line after the ceremony. The graduates line up, and community members come through and congratulate them. This picture (which I happen to think is the best graduation picture EVER) is our valedictorian hugging her basketball coach. Very sweet moment.

It was a happy night. I cried. I hugged my four graduates. I thought the ceremony was a little boring, but I think that's something all graduations have in common


*Nobody freak out. It was Steve.

2 comments:

ginga said...

You've summed up, in pictures and delightful commentary, why graduation in the bush is not a ceremony, it's a personal milestone. Very touching. Very accurate.

mackey family said...

I want to go to that graduation...only 4 graduates, cake, popsicles, music from the local church choir...priceless! I love how we have small children graduating, making this a community event! Cute male servers who wink at us....doesn't get much better than that!