Irvington High School
East Orange Campus High
The Game of Wait!
Here we go again! It's 10:00 AM
on Saturday Morning. Some of the students have been outside the
school since they arrived at 9:00 AM. Once again, the building is
locked and no one knows who has the keys and who is supposed to
open up the building so the band can get their uniforms and
instruments, although this game has been planned for weeks in
advance and everyone was notified about it in advance.
The students do their best to
keep occupied while waiting for someone from security to open the
building, but there are only so many times they can practice the
march steps and dance moves without instruments and uniforms.
The buses arrive to take them to
Irvington at 11:30 AM, as scheduled. Some of the students wonder
if they will have to perform dressed as they are and just march
around silently, since they have no instruments. There is still
no word from security or the building principal as to when the
building will be opened.
The students continue to work on
their marching and dance moves. There's nothing else to do and
they have learned by now that it's better to keep busy working
than to just sit and wait for school employees to do their jobs.
11:42 AM. Finally a security
guard arrives and opens the doors, letting the students in. There
is almost no hope of getting dressed and transported to Irvington
to play the opening show of the game as planned, but they will do
their best to cope with the problem.
There is no time for the students
to get into their uniforms in the usual organized small groups,
so to allow for a mass dressing, the Band Parents arrange the
uniforms along the hall floor (don't worry- it was cleaned!) and
the shoe boxes along the opposite side of the hall. Students will
be able to file through the hall, locate their uniforms and shoes
quickly, and then get dressed at the other end of the hall.
That's it! No more time for
photographs. Everyone (including the photographer) has to pitch
in to help the students get their uniforms on and get out to the
The story does not have a happy
ending, but it has a happy middle. In the middle, the students
arrive in Irvington, too late to put on their opening show, but
still in time to cheer the football team into a win over
Yes, the band played in the
stands, but we have no photos of them playing because Mr. Goode,
the Band Director, was taking the photos and when the Band plays,
he is very busy. No more photos are taken until the Band arrives
back at Cicely Tyson School for the sad ending to the story.
It is shortly after 4:00 PM. The
Band Members get off the buses at Cicely Tyson School and walk up
to the doors hoping to quickly hang up their uniforms, pack away
their instruments and head home so they can enjoy what's left of
their Saturday afternoon.
Incredibly, the same situation
prevails that greeted them this morning. The building is locked
up tight and no one knows who has the key and who is supposed to
open the building back up at the time previously scheduled for
the students' return after the game.
Mr. Goode immediately starts
phoning every administrator and security person who can open the
door for them. Band Parents fill some of the waiting time putting
identification tags on all the Band Uniforms so that the uniform
distribution and collection can go much more quickly in the
But by 4:30 PM, the uniforms have
all been tagged and still no sign of anyone who can let them into
the building. The students at least have their instruments this
time, so they begin to form small groups for practice sessions.
The three Mace Leaders practice
bending over backwards while the flag twirlers twirl and the
dancers dance. Everyone has something to work on for next week's
game with Livingston.
5:00 and still the building is locked. The sun
is low in the sky and casting long shadows as the drummers keep
drumming and wishing they could go home.
It is 5:33 PM when the doors are finally opened
by a security guard and the students can begin to hang up their
uniforms and pack away their instruments. By my estimate, the
students spent two hours and forty-five minutes this morning
waiting to get in, and another hour and a half waiting to get in
after the game. That's why I have decided to title this story,
"The Game of Wait!"
Final Score: East Orange
Campus High 44 - Irvington High School 12