How student council changed my life | Teen Ink

How student council changed my life

May 9, 2011
By Ricky Burnette, Oro Valley, Arizona
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Ricky Burnette, Oro Valley, Arizona
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It was the first day of sophomore year it was a great day with plenty of new faces around. It was the end of third period and I my heart was beginning to race and my hands became sweaty, it was my first day of student council and I didn’t know what to expect. It’s what I worked so hard for the year before with campaigning and running for office .even though I lost the election acuna let me interview in as a executive officer (which pretty much stands for we don’t have any more real positions so well put you here) but I was glad to be in it anyway. I turned into the StuCo room and there was Acuna .
He said with a smile “what’s up ugly?”
I just simply smiled back and said “screw you”.
I just thought in my head same old smartass Acuna .This set the pace for the rest of the day full of jokes and fun; I knew I made the right choice.

The next day we went straight to the deep stuff you could cut the anticipation with the knife. We were doing cross the line “oh no” was going through everyone’s head we were going to have to SHARE OUR SECRETS. Everyone is dreading the thought of it. We stand there as acuna draws the line in front of us. Then he asked the first question it was something stupid like “who has a pet? But he would always say “Cross the line… cross back”. This seemed innocent game enough until the second round came along. This is the day I learned a valuable lesson that I’ll never forget you can never judge a book by its cover because you never know what that person has gone through. They might have gone through a tragic event or there almost homeless don't feel loved hate life feel the world is better without them been rapped anything that made them the way they are they are and you would never know unless you told them this brought everyone’s mind open and made them think about how they react and treat people this simple activity would have an impact for the rest of my high school years.

Things were pretty routine from then. We would go over things like what the theme is for homecoming was and what spirit days were and doing decorations. What seems like easy work for some people was something completely for me. This is like the first time I ever was handed a project and had to make it good. Acuna usually would just give us something and simply say “FIO it” which means figure it out. I think this way of teaching made me a better person in a lot of ways because if u couldn’t figure it out you weren’t just screwed. It thought you that it’s good to ask questions and to think on your feet.
Now I’m going to skip a couple months to around March and it was one of those warm but chilly days and we were doing a St. Paddies day party outside where we needed to use the Dj system and our Dj at the time was gone due to other circumstances. I knew acuna knew, I knew how to use it, so I was cowering in a corner when I heard “RICKY u need to Dj today”. “Oh crap!” was just going thru my mind I really didn’t want to do it. I did it once before and I didn’t do so well. So I got set up really early that day making sure I had all the music set up in order making sure everything is perfect because I didn’t want to do it but I didn’t want to screw up either. So I’m just standing there waiting for the bell to ring with my sweaty, nervous, and shaking on the controls. Then I hear it, the sound of glory or death. I play the first song and everything was good. Then the transition was good and then our MC’S started talking and I started to have fun with and by the end of lunch I was in love I wish I could do it every day if I could. StuCo brought my new love into my life Djing. Student council was one thing I looked forward to in school for awhile it was the only class I didn’t completely annoy me or bore me to death it was like an oasis in a hostile land. Every day I would go in there with a grin on my face and go and trace thing with Zach. It was a easy task, following the lines of a silhouette onto paper it must have been seen as simple but, I saw it in a different perspective like I was making the school a better place and a was helping in something bigger than I was on top. Everything in Student Council was good it was getting closer to the end of the year and we did amazing jobs at our winter ball assembly and now it was time for prom. Putting together a prom assembly it takes lots of time an effort. we always go over the agenda a million times and my friend Jeremy who is a skinny little white kid who is funny and could make fun of you without you knowing it and in the agenda he put “Phillip watches Ricky play music” or “Phillip want to play music but Ricky steps in and plays everyone laughed, but I decided not to because we know how much we love it. Well anyway pep assemblies are a blast staying up till late hour taping, cutting, painting, and losing your sanity were spawn here. Acuna just sat in the middle of the gym and yelled “move that there”
We would say “Okay cunzy”
“Don’t touch that “
And we would just agree “Alright cunz”
Or what he was notorious for “I think I just farted glitter ha-ha”
And then we would scatter and plug our noses and if u weren’t doing work wooooh u better watch out because u would get chewed out but it was all worth the mental and physical exhaustion and the stress and time you put into it, when the music starts playing the adrenaline is pumping and you hear all your peers screaming and excited about what you did the night before and everything was perfect in the world. Stucco went on like it usually did until before you know it was summer this was probably the best summers of my life .full of fun late nights and lots of good friends. Of coarse stucco but we traded our paint brushes and paper work for hiking boots. We went to Romero pools which was fun. My brother and I were experienced hikers and the rest stucco…well they were about a mile behind us. And on the way up there were some stoner who I talked to as I walked by them one of the guys said,
“What’s up bro?”
I replied “just on a hike man. Is that some good stuff?” As I laughed
He ecstatically said “yah man”,
He said something about what type it was purp something I think. Then he asked if I wanted some and I declined and continued my way up the mountain. In the end it turned out to be an a amazing day we jumped off some of the falls with our adrenaline pumping, we swam in the cold refreshing snow melt water and dried off in the blazing hot Arizona sun. Exhausted we started to make our journey down the mountain. Just as it seemed that summer started it was already back to school time. It was my junior year. This year was going to be my best year and not knowing it was also going to be my worst. The year started off like any other year full of annoying but useful syllabuses I was finally relieved to get to 4th period. There was Acuna again with those smartass remarks full of joy and fun. The next couple of days were like last year full of emotional and bonding experiences. The next couple of week was pretty boring as usual. Then it was time for the big event homecoming. Everyone in the flowing wells district came to the tailgate and football game it was always a huge event. This year the juniors and I had a little secret up our sleeve we had my friend Charlie( who by the way is a pretty fat guy whose a cop and still thinks he’s 25 ) bring his 2000 watt b52 sound system with two satellite speakers and a 18” subwoofer which pretty much equals really loud music. Are float was Chinese themed so of coarse I start off with some Kung Fu Fighting. The crowd loved it. They cheered, we cheered it was a great time. Even though we didn’t win in any of the categories we knew we won coolest if there was such a category. Then the dance came which was an awesome time even though there were some creepy parents watching from the outside but I didn’t mind them. The next couple days were pretty routine we always cleaned out stucco talked about what we could do better and what we did good and usually ended it with rockstars. Rockstars were my favorite part; they were like goodynotes I guess u could call them. You could write whatever u wanted on them most people put encouraging thing and the rest were joke and calling people out on things and just joking around and it always ended with
” meeting by the tree”
This means like you know but anyway, a couple weeks after this something that I never saw coming .It was a day before our student council Wednesday eats and my brother and one of my really good friends Sarah were in Acuna’s room. He came to use and in kind of a shaky voice came over to use and said
“I’m not going to be here next year”
We just stared at him, not knowing what to do or say
Then he said “I got a job at the U of A, and I need it so I can pay my bills I never thought this would happen…I’m sorry”
I try to acknowledge but I don’t know what to do I’m frozen solid. And he walked out of the room to go get some coffee and hold back some tears I’m sure. Sarah burst into tears and me and my brother go and try to go and comfort her but we don’t know what to say I’m speechless and lost, so lost I didn’t know what to do. I go to class like any other day just thinking not paying attention to anything my teachers are saying. Just trying to wrap my mind about what’s happening right now. A part of me is sad and the other is mad I don’t know what to think. I go home waiting for what going to happen tomorrow when he tells everyone at Wednesday eats. The next day 4th period we all go into stuco acting normal so Acuna could tell them without us giving it away. We all get our food and sit down and about half way through Acuna starts
He says “can I talk to guys real quick”
“As u guys may or may not know” he starts to choked up a lil “I am not going to be with u guys next year” and I hear sarah and kemah start to bawl.
“I got a job at the U of A because I need to pay for my living expenses.” Now we are all crying or having the reaction I had the day earlier.
He continues “I know u guys will be amazing without me next year and I don’t really know what to say I really don’t. So you all know how much I like poems so hear it is.” He recites a poem choking up and starting to cry more and more after every line and so do I. We finish the meal and I finish the day being sulked in sadness. The next day he gets going straight to work on Halloween decorations and we continue on that for the next couple of weeks and everyday or so our new advisor would be there. He was Mr. Rios a government teacher and in charge of link crew which would do freshman orientation and such. No one was very sure of him and we would just have to wait and see. Well a couple of days later it was our Halloween bash and also Acunas last day being with us and it went off without a hitch. We came up with this plan for when he left and on his way out we chased him in his car and begged him to come back and when he rolled down his window he was crying and speechless I think the only thing he said was
And we let him go wondering what was going to happen. Well at first Rios was alright he really didn’t really do much just watched and our student body prez tomas would do all of the advising. This was alright and he would also make us do all our jobs to our pin point description. This really pissed me off because I would have to do purchase orders. I would run all over school getting them signed at the front office by a principal and then on the complete opposite side of the school turn them in at the business office and turn them in it was rather annoying. It was obvious that this wasn’t cunzs student council anymore. Everything went routine just as Rios wanted it, organized. I really didn’t care until this preciseness really got to me. It was at the end of the year and my brother and I lost our elections and we were assigned a interview time and that day we needed to work on a effile tower and we were in such a rush to finish it because prom was that weekend we forgot about the interview. As soon as we got home I immediately remembered
I screamed “oh sh** we forgot about the interview!”
My brother replied “it shouldn’t be that big of a deal, ill call him and reschedule
For tomorrow so he called
He said” hey Rios sorry, we rushed home to work on this prom thing and forgot about the interview is it alright if we reschedule for tomorrow/
He replied “actually there is nothing I can do”
“Nothing?” my brother said in disbelief
“Yes nothing”
“Okay bye”
I couldn’t believe this was happening we were getting booted from student council the thing we put so much work into? And then I thought maybe, maybe this is for the better. And now that I look at the past how much fun and how much it changed my life now I think it set me up and gave me the resources and mentality to leave and have my own impact on the world without the help of student council.


This book is dedicated
To the amazing Marc Acuna
Thank you

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