How To Get Clout

by Jared Schwartz

Coming into Sherwood, I hardly knew anyone. I went to a magnet middle school, so high school was initially terrifying to me. Still, I overcame that challenge and became relevant. The best decision I made in high school was to join BBYO, a Jewish youth group. I’m not going to spend this column talking about how great BBYO is. In fact, in many ways I despise BBYO as an organization as a whole. However, BBYO was great for helping me make some of my closest friends. One of the best ways to meet people is to join any organization or extracurricular activity.

Even as I have gradually lost interest in BBYO, the friends I made through it are still some of my closest. In fact, one of my favorite memories from this year was going to a movie program with the other seniors in my chapter while actively avoiding everyone else. Another lesson I learned is that in order to become relevant, you need to put yourself out there. Teachers will hate me for this, but I found that it is always good to talk to people in your classes. In addition to extracurriculars, getting to know some of the people in your classes can make the school day much more bearable, even if you don’t become friends with everyone.

There are a lot of people in high school, and even in my senior year, I’m meeting people who are actually pretty cool whose paths I’ve never crossed. Talking to new people is how I generated enough clout to win Class Clown (even if Everett Stubblefield technically got more votes for me.) In high school, clout is all that matters, and if you don’t win a senior superlative, you basically failed. My final lesson is to ignore the haters. This is some pretty generic advice, but I’ve come to accept that not everyone likes me. The key to accepting this fact was to acknowledge that everyone who doesn’t like me sucks and isn’t worth my time. In the end, you should focus on the people who like you and not those who don’t. Jared out.