The final segment of my “Me in School” posts, high school started off as a slightly terrifying venture. A new and much larger school with all kinds of students I didn’t know, and classrooms that I would get lost trying to find. And yes, the first few days were hectic but I got into the swing of things quickly and found my comfort zone within my new environment.
By far the biggest adjustment for me was becoming a part of the marching band. It was directed by the same teacher that I had in middle school for band, but damn was it a lot of work. Not only did I have band as a class and participate in school performances/concerts, but I was now devoting my life to band. When the final bell rang for the day and the other students went home, I was staying for another few hours to practice out in a hot parking lot or football field. And for those who have never done it, let me just tell you that having to push air out of my lungs and into an instrument when it’s 90 degrees and 80% humidity outside fucking sucks! What was worse is that when the weekend finally came I couldn’t have it either because of marching competitions. The first semester of my new high school life was basically just band. It couldn’t have been more clear to me…I wasn’t doing this again next year. And with that, I quit band after the completion of my Freshman year.
With extra curricular activities not weighing me down, I was a free young man my second year of high school, and my mentality of ruling the world came rushing back like an ex girlfriend that just didn’t wanna let me go. I was back to paying students to do things for me such as carrying my books to class, making locker runs for me, and doing my homework and book reports. But what I learned is that 5 or 10 bucks didn’t go as far as it did when we were younger. The cost of the services I required had gone up and I wasn’t going to have the money to continue this lifestyle for very long. Ohhhh, but I had a plan…
I started my own “business” during the school days. I found a niche…something that the other students craved because it was against the rules. There were no snacks, drinks, or even gum allowed during the school day, and my goodness it made everyone so heavily desire what was forbidden. It always seemed like an eternity until lunch came around, and for all of those hungry students out there I was flashing candy right in their faces. I would buy a box of 30 candy bars for just under $15, then I would sell each one for $1. I doubled my money on every box I sold and within two or three weeks I was selling 3 or 4 boxes a week. But candy bars weren’t the end of it. I also sold chewing gum by the package, and by the piece. At every school function/event we had, students would practically line up to buy a piece of gum from me. At 25 cents a piece I was quintupling (sometimes more) my money on every pack of gum I bought.
I was clearing anywhere form $50 to $100 a week by simply selling candy and gum while at school. There was another teacher who sold candy bars as well “under the table” to raise money for a group she ran at the school. To keep my business strong I started giving students hand made tickets with random numbers on them, and every week I had a drawing and students could win candy bars, gum, and even straight up cash. This took my business to the next freak’n level! So much in fact, that this particular teacher confronted me about selling candy at school and how it was against the rules. My response was simple…”Then wouldn’t the staff also love to learn of YOUR business venture selling candy…Let’s just each keep to ourselves and we can have a good thing going.” She walked away not happy but she never mentioned it to me again.
To make my ego even bigger, I even had staff members/teachers that bought from me when they were feeling a little hungry. I was literally like a damn drug dealer to the school, except I was selling legal goods that were just banned in compliance with the school rules. I used the money I made to ensure that I wouldn’t have to lift a finger for school work again…and I didn’t. Underclassmen, Upperclassmen, it didn’t matter who did my work as long as they did it well. And honestly, I don’t think anyone wanted to find out what would happen if they screwed me over. My assignments, reports, even some tests, were done by other students from all over the school, and they were done well. I was never failed by anyone I hired to do my work. They came through every time, and I paid very handsomely to ensure they did. The going rate for a book report was $50, but I soon found students in bidding wars for my work so I was able to get it for less in many cases.
My Sophomore year was excellent, but it was creating a monster out of me for the next year…