“I always suspected you of having a close relationship with Mr. Polinski.”Dr. Stanley Grove
Speaking to a high up IIT official amidst our final week of classes, Dr. Grove probably didn’t realize how right he was. He had just received our essays and for some reason was particularly enthralled with mine. Of course, as usual, he wasn’t able to recognize me particularly and didn’t even know which section I was in, so kept on pointing to another rowdy Freshman rocker (RFR), Thomas, as he discussed some philosophical point he liked.
Like a lot of stuff that goes on here at WCC it was a pretty weird situation for even a hard core rocker like the one I’ve become. What do you do when the professor is praising and shredding your paper at once while talking to someone else as if they’re you.
I was Everett, I was the weirdo who pranced around town waving a burning torch at night. I had graduated from pre-school, I had been homeschooled (sort of), had come out to the middle of nowhere for reasons I knew not why, had stood up to the Rosie and defended our rights to dumpster dive and study metal. And it was I who had written the essay that bore my name.
Of course I had had assistance, the names you all know of every class who brought Irkutsk Ice Truckers to greatness. (Make Irkutsk Great Again hats are comin’, may-bee). But in this moment I saw it, my name, and spiciness and metalheadness as my mission and my work alone. And I thought it was a mission at which I had failed. Fleeing society, abandoning even my closest friends and associates, I wondered whether it was even worth it anymore.
Why? We were still imprisoned by the world of grades. Easter had brought war, and the shadow of Euclid hung over the Freshman Class, picking us off one by one. Johannes, Thomas, and Ruth had tried to bring be back, to strive again for Irkutsk, but by this time I had again lost hope. IIT had failed, I had failed, my work turned against me as even the brightest of my pupils turned to the Geometric side.
What could I do? Or more precisely, should I even do? Would it be better to live as Blaise spoke, and just give up on living (per se of course)?
But no, there were more than me. All only seemed over. I had not “wound up with a snail for a sugar daddy”. Dr. Grove saw me in another, saw what I had created, and..
But I had not created it. I had thought it was all me. I had feared and trusted only in myself when none of what I had created was truly my own.
Pass on what you have learned.
And it was from Nemec I had learned, and his words to me at our last lesson before I moved on to attempt a metal-head life on my own were these. He had given me a legacy, what he, in fact, had received. It was my job to ensure his work was not in vain. And I could not do that by selfishness. The true freedom for our class, the actualization of our potential, the unity of our section and the survival of Irkutsk… All required me to be something for them, and not for Irkutsk alone in order to save even it.
So I faced my fears of my own creation, the steps of which Rinju so truthfully had spoken Easter morning. It was out of my hands, it was not me alone now but us. For even if I could not, someone else could be “the spark of hope that would burn down the fear without”. Euclid could be Euclid or Euclid might not be, but Dr. Grove was right.
I was Everett but also in another sense not. Everett was not the symbol of something that I could not control, the symbol of a movement, the sign of a way of life. What I myself could not do, others would take up. I was standing down Euclid and Aristotle and their armada, but I was truly not.
For again, it was no longer me, but an us, an us who unified with each other now broke the conventions of sectarian dorms and came together the final night of the final chapter. I would not be with them to ride the falcon, to enter the next chapter of the fight…
For the gods of grades had struck me down, or so it seemed, as my paper was shredded, I had mistakenly thought it praised. I had gone up for help on it, and was struck down.
But that would not end Irkutsk, that would not end the Freshman spirit:
LUKE: Every word of what you just said was wrong. The Rebellion is reborn today. The war is just beginning. And I will not be the last Jedi.
KYLO REN: I’ll destroy her, and you, and all of it.
LUKE: No. Strike me down in anger and I’ll always be with you.-The Last Jedi
Even as I would be gone, even as it seems that evil has vanquished, Euclid trodden the Freshmen underfoot, IIT would be there. The Freshmen were actualized in our potential
Even as I was gone, Everett would be there. We would be there…
For we are all Everett
And we will now be Sophomore Rockers!!! Dr. Grove was right, Thomas did have a close relationship with Mr. Polinski. He himself was an Everett now, as I, and all were, a warrior within, but philsophical without, a rocker, a poet, a cowboy, and a philosopher. Spicy of soul IIT was now for everyone, open and cleansed, it could now fulfill its purpose, a purpose I, Nemec, or any of the other founders could ever have envisoned from our private takes, our imperfect understandings.
Only in this realization have we found peace, hope to be reborn as students, ready to take on another year, as Everett. For again, we are all, all Everett.
Rock on my fellow freshmen rockers (for the last time as a freshman),
Note: This story is based on true events and its conclusion is most definitely true in some sense. However, take its complete narrative ark as literally true and the accidents which subsist within it as possibly metaphorical.
Welcome to the world of being a sophomore rocker, fellow rocker with Everett, nay… Welcome, Sophomore Rocker Everett!!!