(Copyright 1998. All rights reserved.)

The Tattoo

--- Making a Permanent Impression Since 1994 ---

November 2, 1998

Chaos reigns at the tech school, too

-- Seventh in a Series --

Saturday, October 17, 1998
8 a.m. The first time the constructional
actually affected me directly.

This is the morning when all the members of the
class of 2000, at least those who want to go to
college, take the test that could save them a
lot of money. After only a couple of hours of
review and six hours of sleep, I entered the
auditorium side of Bristol Eastern High School
at 8 o’clock sharp, ready to take my PSATs.

There was a mob of over 200 juniors, some
sophomores, and is that a freshman over there? 
You couldn’t see the end over the sea of heads.
Partly to make conversation, and partly out of
curiosity, I asked my friends what the hold-up
was. Either someone smartened up, or there was
no room due to construction because the annual
Teddy Bear Jamboree was held at St. Paul’s,
instead of in our school during PSAT testing. So
it couldn’t have been that. Of course nobody
knew the answer.

After standing in the mob for a few minutes, I
told my friend that I could have been home
getting some more sleep. We were finally freed
and about half of us lined up at the door of the
cafeteria to get signed in. Yes, the cafeteria. 
The kid in front of me exclaimed, "Oh, there’s
desks!"  And I repeated the same when I entered.

Well, at least we weren’t taking one of the most
important tests of our lives on long tables
where when we have to look up when done, we see
someone’s face, which is kind of annoying while
you’re supposed to be concentrating your test,
not on the way the person across from you looks
early Saturday morning.

Due to the asbestos removal in the math hallway
(which, by the way, I heard was supposed to be
removed from the whole building this past
summer, oh well, so why start it the morning of
the PSATs out of all days?), our room
assignments got changed at the last minute. And
I was one of the lucky many to get stuck in the

When I sat down at my desk way in the back, I
thought to myself, this doesn’t seem as bad as I
expected. The desks were nicely spread out. Then
I saw our proctors with large pieces of
construction paper (no pun intended). I thought
they were going to tape them to the windows in
the doors so we wouldn’t be distracted.

Instead, my proctor taped the big bright yellow
sheet of paper on the wall, and wrote something
that I could not interpret from the back row.
She said she was going to write our ending times
on that sheet. OK, but I told her I couldn’t
read it from my seat. She wrote the times big
enough for everyone to read. I realized that the
cafeteria had no chalk and/or dry erase board,
which could be very useful for the proctors as
well as for the students. Then I wondered if
they had thought this out. You know, there are
portable boards. I commented to my friend that I
felt like we went to a very poor, meaning cheap
school. Then she said she was going to walk
around with a sign from time to time to let us
know how many minutes we have left.

I thought she was joking. But she actually
snaked around us, holding up the appropriate
sign for each time interval. Passing out
booklets and answer sheets usually takes less
than a minute in a normal classroom setting. But
with four times the amount of people in the
café, it took forever.

I just wanted to get started so I can get out
early. When we finally began the actual test, I
could not concentrate. Normally I work better
with noise. But the Fruitopia machine was just
letting out an annoying moan.

Of course everyone who was in a normal classroom
was out a half-hour before us.  We would have
been out a couple of minutes earlier if they
didn’t ask if there were any St. Paul students
about five times.  We should have taken the test
there -- at least they don’t have any asbestos
(not that I know of).
-- Hila Yosafi, junior, Bristol Eastern High

Monday, Oct. 19, 1998

Hi. I am writing to inform everyone that the two
high schools in Bristol aren't the only schools
that serve the Bristol area are under
construction. I am a junior at E.C. Goodwin
R.V.T.S. in New Britain and life there is

The math center (Room 239) is being renovated so
they can put in 11 computer terminals. I can
never find the teachers. It's like A Day Mods 5,
6, 7 meet in room 208, B Day 9, 11, 12 meet in
room 214, etc. 

It's even worse for the rest of the school.
There is no kitchen! We have this little
"cubicle" that we have to make 250 sandwiches in
everyday since school started Sept. 3! The
maintenance department has moved in the
convection oven, but the electrician still hasn't
hooked it up, so it's still sandwiches. God only
knows when the blasted construction will start.
We have had so many start dates it's not funny.
At any rate once they do start it will take 120
working days to complete our new state of the
art kitchen.

Time-line: June 1, 1998, abestos removal slated
to start (did not get funding); July 15,
asbestos removal slated to start (did not get
funding); August 1, finally got funding; Aug.
29, asbestos removal completed; Sept. 1,
demolishing of walls/construction Slated to
begin (not done); Oct. 15, demolishing of
walls/construction slated to begin (not done);
Oct. 19, demolishing of walls/construction
slated to begin (not done).
-- Marc Bramhall, junior, E.C. Goodwin R.V.T.S.

Monday, Oct. 19, 1998
Sigh. It'a Monday morning. I'm on my way to
first period geometry. 'Nuff said. While making
my merry way through the foreign language
hallway, I am suddenly overcome by a sickening
aura of diesel putrescence infiltrating my
innocent lungs. I gag violently due to this
unexpected disturbance in my otherwise serene
respiration. This is a school, not a gas
station! Holding a too-long sleeve over my face,
contorted with disgust, I hastily exit the
deadly hallway, escaping it's volatile contents.
I suppose I'll have to continue with my
existence now. Grumble. Work and
-- Chantelle Garzone, sophomore, Bristol Eastern
High School

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