Our View: CFHS play successfully emphasizes importance of individual exploration

By Briana McGeough 2008

The lesson came through clearly in last week’s CFHS theater production of You Can’t Take It with You by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart. In the performance, Mr. Kirby, an arrogant man who works tirelessly at a job he despises on Wall Street, suffers indigestion and unhappiness because of his dedication to the belief that a man is only as good as his business. Mr. Kirby sharply contrasts character Martin Vanderhof, a grandfather who walked out on his job 35 years earlier to pursue a life of pleasure. The result on the audience is an understanding of the importance of life’s joys and the realization that no matter how much money or property you attain during your life, once you die, you can’t take it with you.

The Tiger Hi-Line staff fully supports this message. With perpetually increasing pressures on American students to learn more, achieve more and become more active, stresses are rising. The increasing expectations require students to take and excel in advanced classes in addition to seeking involvement in multiple extracurricular activities as well as holding a part-time job. Students are told from the time they are in elementary school that it is necessary for them to succeed in all of these aspects of life in order to secure a successful future through a college education at a quality institution.

While we certainly believe in the be all you can be mentality, and believe that a rigorous course load and active schedule certainly has its benefits, free time is also necessary for holistic development. High school is a time for students to experiment with their sense of self and solidify an identity; such experimentation requires time to explore passions and pursue interests that may not be résumé builders.

The Tiger Hi-Line staff believes that high school is a time for planning ahead but also for living in the present. Even though we are working toward a brighter future, the truth remains that life is no less of a whirlwind beyond high school than it is today. We need to seize opportunities, even today, to stop what we are doing and look around; after all, we never know what we may find in the vast and wonderful world in which we live.

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