March 2005 – The bus trip back from Fresno State Drills
For the first and only time ever, Stu, Matt, Caleb, Marty and I were not only participating in Bible Drill, but we all made it to State Drills. Previously, it was some combination of us, or one of us failed to pass. To me, the highlight of the trip was always the bus ride. Being stuck together in a van or bus for several hours really allowed you to bond and what not. And in some cases, it gave us the opportunity to talk to the girls in our grade, cause everyone knows there was a giant invisible gender barrier separating us up until late high school and early college. I mean, they were stuck with us.. you could only talk about so much with your friends.
For this year’s bus rides, the guys and I found ourselves passing time with poetry. Yes, Poetry. As 9th graders, we were taught the basics of it in English class at school (rhyme schemes, Shakespeare, etc.). Of course, we were immature; we just cared that it rhymed. One of us would write a line, and then pass it on to the next person. And it would go like that until someone ended it. Most of the time we just laughed at it and tossed it. But for this instance.. we just had to keep it. And here’s the story of its creation. This is poem written by Stu, Matt and Me. We needed a title, so we waited a moment for inspiration. We heard the bus chaperone Curtis yell out “Hey, someone turn the heat off!” And thus, we had the title of our poem, “Heat Off”. I started the first line and it went back and forth between me and Stu at first.
Heat Off by Josh, Stu and Matt
It was a fine day except for one little thing,
I will tell you… oh wait, no, I will sing.
It was rather hot in a way I can’t explain,
But there were some girls, so I can’t complain.
There was sweat rolling down my face
When I bent down to tie my shoelace,
Only to find a hot girl’s shoe in its place.
I looked up at her and found really nice eyes.
When I walked up to her, I did not know my demise.
For I soon woke up from this wonderful dream,
And found on my face a bunch of shaving cream.
It was late at night at a party of food and drinks.
My friend said I was thrashing in my sleep; at least that’s what he thinks.
So then I dozed back off to sleep.
Kind of lame so far.. We figured it was going to be a poem that were going to toss, so Stu and I started to give up on it. We put it aside to trade spots with Matt. He was talking to all the girls (of course). So we made small talk with them as Matt took the reigns to finish off our sorry poem. When we ran out of things to talk about with those girls, we came back to this:
This time, this dream it really puzzled me.
What I found, what I saw, it almost made me scream.
A girl, a woman, dancing on rolling hills with emerald eyes
And a face that gave one chills of emotion:
Love, passion, devotion.
My long lost soul mate of my utmost adoration,
Everything about her set my heart in motion.
But surrounding, closing, a barrier so tall and of fire,
So hot I could not breathe at all.
Heat off, that was my only want, sorry I may seem so blunt,
But the want in my heart, I could not stunt.
By the time I realized my dreams were truthful lies,
The heat from my body burned, it seemed like my demise.
Some things so hot just cannot be touched.
It is the moral of my story, though it doesn’t seem like much.
The unbearable, the untouchable, the hot unreachable,
Sometimes you just got to Heat off…
Wow! So Good! Okay, maybe not. But still, not bad for some lowly 9th graders. For the remainder of our freshman year in high school, I tried to make “heat off” a thing or a phrase. It was meant to have the same value as “just chill” or “calm down”. It never caught on. Though the original scribbles on a piece of notebook paper were never saved, I at least had the wit the write it down and archive it somewhere.
Needless to say, San Marino taught us to be great readers and writers