AN: Band Camp is starting this Monday (July 20th) and I'm excited like crazy. Granted the 1st few days are 6pm-9pm days but after that it's full day stuff WOO! But anyway, enjoy the story. (Note: The years are right. I worked it all out.)I stand here looking up at all the pictures. Up on one of the largest walls in the Band Room are the pictures and names of every member of the Marching Band since the opening of the school in 2000. In the upper left hand corner is the pictures of the members from 2000. The band was small, only made up of 60 or so people, if not less. Then in the bottom right is the past season, all 108 of us. I stare at the pictures from last season. I see the tan faces of my friends. I spent nearly every Friday with those people. Tuesday and Thursday rehearsals, Saturday competitions, and of course two weeks of Band camp. I know these people well. They're my second family and I love them even if they do annoy me at times. I know who's the loud ones, quite ones, random, obnoxious, crazy, nasty, and most school spirited ones. I know them pretty well. Glancing at the season before that, ('07-'08) I recognize a lot of the faces. I was a Freshmen that year, but I wasn't in the Band then. The '06-'07 shows even less faces that I know. By '05-'06 I can only point out the Freshmen. The years before that show unknown faces. To me, these are the ones that make me wonder. To me, these are just names and faces. I know nothing about them. I don't know what they were like. I don't know who screamed the loudest at the football games, or who was considered the craziest person. They're just former members. But what makes me wonder is, did they have a similar Marching Band experience as me? Did they stay at games where it was raining, but the whole Band sat and watched even if they couldn't play? Or if on one of the biggest games of the year, they prayed to God to help them win the game?
I see the pictures, but they mean nothing to me. I wasn't friends with any of them. When I look at the pictures of the people from last season I have memories from all of them. But from 2000 to 2005 nothing comes to mind. No crazy memories of someone going around asking Band members for money to win the Spirit Stick, or a Color Guard member falling and sliding several yards during a rehearsal.
What I do know is that there are memories in those years. There are former Marching Band members out there who were there for those years. They know what happened in those couple of years. They could tell me who was the loudest and craziest person in the Band. They could tell me the best memories of the years they were in Band. But they're not here, and they can't. So the faces and names will continue to be just unknown people to me.
Turning around I look at all my friends scattered around the Band Room. Anthony a baritone player is talking to Megan a 08-09 Clarinet player turned Guard member. Beth is talking to her fellow flute players, and Drumline is playing on practice pads and talking. Color Guard is in the Guard room doing one thing or another, and farthest from me by the Band Room Doors I can see some of my fellow Trumpet players piggybacking on each others back. I've said it several times, but it's true; I know these people and I have memories about them. But soon the people that I know will all graduate. Their places will be taken by new members. By the 2014-2015 season everyone I know and will know will have had graduated. Maybe after then there will be another Marching Band player looking up at these pictures thinking. Wondering about the memories from this very season. Things that I don't even know about yet will just be memories by then. Maybe they'll see my picture, but to them I'll just be a random picture and name. Since the pictures show us holding our instruments, drumsticks or a flag the only thing the person will know is that I played trumpet. They won't know that I love to scream loud and cheer during the games. Or that I love to go on long trips on the Band Bus. I'll just be another face, a former Band member in the history of the GHS Marching Band.
For now though, I'll enjoy my Junior and Senior years in Marching Band. I'll make the most of these last two years, and hope that me and my fellow Band members can leave memories and traditions that will be passed down to the next members. Cause the 2014-2015 Freshmen Band members are in 4th grade today, but hey, I want them to know that me and my friends where here and loved every second of it.
AN: I actually didn't get the idea for this story from those pictures. (Although they are real. The wall is huge and does have pictures of all the members.) I was reading a book called "Soldier Boys" and for some reason I started thinking about the monument over the USS Arizona in Hawaii, and all the names on it. How that to me they were just names, but back then they were people who had stories to tell. Who were friends and who were once here. Then I started thinking of the pictures in the Band Room and how the whole Name-N-Pictures thing was pretty much the same. And I worked it all out, the years are right. It just took a lil while to figure out. Kinda weird to think in the future I'll just be another name and face.