Day Zero/One of STN

DAY ZERO

The school day ended, and with the last bell, we finally finished triple-checking all of the equipment that we had packed. By 5:40, we finished loading everything onto the buses, and after taking a group picture, all loaded our bodies onto the bus and then went on our way.

It was nice. It was a really nice bus ride. The wind was blowing, and the weather was cool, and it was nice to just ride through the twilight until the glittering city was on the horizon.

After arriving at the hotel at around 7, we waited around for our rooms. My room wasn’t ready yet, so I had to temporarily move into someone else’s. Then after a meeting with everyone and getting our IDs and everything, we were released, so some of us went to Hard Rock Café for a late dinner (it was 9:00 when we got there and left at 10:40).

IMG_4420
Party of 14?

–and as curfew was 11PM, I sprinted back to the hotel, got my stuff from the other room, moved it to my room which had been prepared by then, then went to Chuven’s room in order to prepare for tomorrow – the first day – as tomorrow would be the very first competition.

After taking a shower and all, my roommates and I watched a bit of Fifty Shades as we discovered it on the telly, and then changed the channel, had a few interesting conversations, then went to sleep at around 1AM so that we could wake up tomorrow in time for the competition as we had to meet with everyone by 7AM.

DAY ONE

Went to Chick-fil-a for some breakfast, then went to the meeting place. We were given the prompt and from there on out, it was completely downhill. This competition – so dubbed Crazy 8’s – is where we are given a prompt and then are required to produce something that followed the given prompt within 8 hours. We entered into two categories – sitcom and short story. I was on the sitcom team, and the sitcom team, I just want to say, was complete hell.

Every team has about 23 people or so because it basically split the entire party that went into two. That doesn’t necessarily mean that a lot of those people are competent or useful though. And so, it began – 8 hours of stress.

We had to completely throw out all of our previous potential ideas as it didn’t fit whatsoever and had to start from scratch, whereas short story’s prompt fit in perfectly with their previously thought-out idea.

What happened was that we were originally supposed to finish filming by 1PM. We wrapped up filming by 1:40PM, which was very, very bad. Throughout those hours, I wrote most of the script and directed most of the time. I was also required to be a little…vocal about my demands as I’ve said before, there were 23 people all working together and some of them would rather mind their own business than help contribute and make the project easier.

We did manage to turn in both sitcom and short story, which was a vast improvement from last year where we couldn’t turn in both of them before the deadline due to human error and computer error, but while short story turned out extremely well, sitcom came out as absolute shit. And everyone wasn’t afraid to express how shitty they thought it was, which was rather…irritating, to say the least.

After we finished up, we were turned loose after a debriefing, where I rinsed off all the grime and sweat from the incredibly high-pressured and tense situation I had been stuck in for eight hours – at one point, my dad came by to drop off my dress, but there was something preventing me from going to him, so he had to get out of the car and hand-deliver it to me, which upset him, which upset me as I had already been suffering for six hours at that point, and so, I began crying for a few seconds.

Anyway, after, I went to dinner with a friend after a meeting with my contest group for Friday. And then we had to go to the opening ceremony, where we were allowed in an hour early thanks to being the host school, though… Honestly, I really hated the opening ceremony. And so, the ceremony ended at around 10PM, and everyone milled around the lobby until a few of us decided to go on a little trip and went to another hotel which had a revolving restaurant at its 72nd floor.

We nearly missed curfew. Like I got into my room at 10:59PM, where we had to have room checks by the chaperones due to two scandals that had taken place that day.

The first is that one of the first-years – P – had cried because she had been alienated or something of the sort, and so, Chuven requested that the older students make sure that they included the younger students and to respect them. We didn’t have to like them or want to hang out with them but at least respect them.

The second was that another one of the first-years – R – had begun flirting with another student at the convention and had lied to him, saying that she was a junior, when in reality, she was not. The boy was 18 years old and had begun to stalk R. We know this because when she went to her room when it came time near curfew, the boy had been pacing back and forth in front of her room five times while some of the fourth year boys stood outside of her room as events escalated before finally confronting the boy and telling him to back off. What’s infuriating about this is that we were explicitly warned not to wander off by ourselves but to always, always, always go with someone wherever we go, and not only did she continually wander off by herself to that boy, but she lied to him and is getting off scot-free even after breaking rules left and right.

And then now we’re just hanging out in the room.

I’m very, very nervous for tomorrow. For tomorrow’s contest, I will be not only writing the script, but directing and editing as well, all in the span of 6 hours. And while the number of people on this team is smaller, we have less time and we’re in the same position as we were with sitcom – with little to no preparation. And this time, everything – from start to finish, but literally and figuratively – rests on my shoulders. I’m afraid we’re not going to finish in time, I’m afraid that we’re not going to produce something good, and I’m afraid that something – everything – whatever – is going to go wrong tomorrow. And it will be entirely my fault if it does. And I’m terrified.

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