School Tradition

“So in high school, um, I went to Phillips Academy Andover, which is like this, you know, hoity-toity prep school and um, so they do this really cruel thing to um, the students for um, for the, what’s it called, finals.  Where they put all the students into this one gym for like, everybody’s that’s in that um, in that class, like chem. 300 or whatever. You know they put everyone in the same room and they make everybody take the test at the same time. So like, its kinda like SAT time, when you all in a gym and like, everybody’s like nervous and like the energy is just nervousness. So you like sitting in their and you’re like, ahh this is crazy.  It’s kind of torturous actually. Um, anyways, above the door, um, where we would all like congregate in this little lobby and right above the door before the thing it says um, oh god, what did it say.  Um, “beware all yee who enter here.” It’s like wow, okay, as if that wasn’t disheartening enough. I think it was there, I was at the school for three years and I think it was there the first two years.  When it wasn’t there the last year everybody was really upset. It was like, come on, it’s like, part of the experience. Have to have it.”

Like any group of people, the communities at high schools often have their own traditions.  As schools are primarily places of teaching, learning and tested knowledge, a tradition  based aroumd the fear of tests is understandable.  Final exams can often be so stressfull that warnings such as “beware all yee who enter here,” may not be completly outlandish to a student.  What makes the phrase amusing in addition to a bit frightening, is the diction of the phrase.  When read, it reminds one of a sign that pirates would use to warn their enemies.  Consequently, the phrase above the door under which the students pass to enter the exam serves to warn and amuse.