Class of 2012: Hope for a better tomorrow


Daniel Tan

We’ve all had those nights. You know, those. The ones spent until 2 or 3 or 5 a.m. — maybe even an all-nighter! — writing Lit essays or studying for APUSH.

For me, it wasn’t homework so much but my responsibilities as the Media Director of the MVHS robotics team and as the Special Report Editor of this staff.

God, how brutal it was some of those days, those wild ups and downs. Like the day I was flying high after members of my Media Division created the vision of an awesome animation. Like the day my soul was crushed after weeks of negotiations with other FUHSD high schools about allowing members of this staff to visit for a Special Report project imploded in a single stroke.

With those ups and downs came days when I wanted to give up on life.

It was too easy. Too easy to just throw my hands up in exasperation and head off to bed, not caring about what would happen to my responsibilities tomorrow. But I would like to thank you, Monta Vista, for teaching me to suck it up and deal with it.

Maybe you hammered that lesson into me too often, but it was better than getting nothing at all.

I remember one such night perfectly — a recent one, actually. It was 6 a.m. I had been up the whole night working on my robotics team’s animation, assembling the whole thing together from scenes that members had finished (or hadn’t, in which case I was the one doing them that night).

Everything was going wrong. There were scenes that weren’t usable movie clips yet, even though they had already been rendering away for 24 hours on the robotics computers at school. The narration wasn’t done. Neither was the storyboard which had to be accompanied with the video, nor the music for the entire animation.

I was tired. I would never be able to finish before I had to go to the team’s Silicon Valley Regional at around 7:30 a.m. I wasn’t even halfway done. And calling it a quarter of the way there was stretching it.

I was so close to calling it quits and going to bed. “I can’t, I can’t,” I incoherently repeated over and over in my mind. I was ready to do it. Give up on the animators who had nobly slaved a combined total of over 250 hours on the animation. Give up on the rest of the team who had expected me to finish my last year as the Media Director with a bang.

But I didn’t. Instead, I soldiered on, watching as all the incomplete scenes miraculously finished rendering and the pieces suddenly came together.

Submitted at 7:34 a.m. was one of the best animations the robotics team has ever created. Maybe not the best ever, but pretty high up there. It was something the entire animation team could be proud of.

And to think I almost gave up.

The point of this whole story? Some days, the only thing we can do is get our sanities back and hope for a better tomorrow (or, in this case, a better hour-from-now). The tomorrows bring new life — ideas reborn, hope renewed, humor revived.

At the very least, there’ll be some coffee the next morning.

And as much as I may have hated it while I was here, thank you, Monta Vista, for teaching me to keep on going even in the hopeless of times.