Wednesday, January 6, 2010

National Honor Society

Today in the Greenville Daily Advocate, a former classmate talks about the day he was inducted into the National Honor Society in 1965. Oddly enough, it was the same day that I too joined the ranks.

In the article, Ron talks about how he dressed up in his Sunday best for the day. Only a few students were tapped each year. He had worked hard to be one of them. He wore a dress shirt that day and had been criticized by a friend for not wearing dress pants but instead jeans. He was the last chosen for NHS but did make the ranks.

My sister, June, was one of the first inductees into NHS. She worked hard to make good grades. For being such a mean older sister who tormented me most of my childhood, I was amazed that she was smart, too.
I didn’t really care about grades. She could be smart for both of us.

I think perhaps I was ADD. I couldn’t concentrate very well and test left me with a blank mind. So, at an early age, I decided that I would just do what I could to get by. Had I been diagnosed back then, I might have surprised everyone. For in my ‘just getting by’ I did pretty well. My grades weren’t bad. In fact, I was the president of Geometria. I could spell geometry. I just couldn’t do it. Yet, I passed and was president of the geometry club.

I really didn’t care what I wore on NHS induction day. I sat on the left side of the auditorium with my boyfriend, Gary, watching as my friend, Shirley, walked down the aisle to escort another new inductee to the platform. Suddenly, I was tapped on the back. In my head I was thinking, “Whoa, wrong back!” Shirley lead me to the front of the auditorium where parents appeared and pinned me. I sat in the row of inductees wondering if anyone really could see me sitting there or if this was a time warp and not really happening. I received an NHS award for outstanding character. The audience laughed knowing that it was a perfect award for me.

There were other students who deserved to be in that seat much more than me. I was honored and thrilled yet it was surreal. I still have that pin and the gold braid I wore on graduation day noting my NHS specialness. I don’t know why I still keep it. Perhaps it seems rude to throw out an honor award. Maybe I’ll take it to the alumni banquet next year and give it to someone in our class who deserved it more.

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