TCT’s The Countless Thanks 2022: Eva Harshman

Kiera and Addy, for just “getting it”

When I say you “get it,” I mean that in more than one way. I can no longer imagine not having you two by my side at every milestone we’ve been through in TCT. We laugh, rant, and cry while eating sandwiches together. Inside and out of TCT, I can always count on you two for anything and everything. 

Penny O’Meara, for making this so difficult to write

I had an order in mind for this paper, but thanks for ruining it. I kept trying to write about other people, but you kept sitting at the forefront of my mind. I, for one, think it’s hilarious that you think I’m a big softie underneath my chronic frown; I’m not a softie, but you make me melt. I’m not a hugger, but there’s no way that I could possibly resist a single one of your reassuring hugs. As I like to say, you’re my “bestie for the restie.” Odyssey of the Mind forever and ever? I think yes. We’re the sole pair that has stuck together throughout every year of OM, and I wouldn’t have chosen anyone else to go on such an adventure with. Oh, what an adventure it has been. When I say we’ve cried and laughed together, I mostly mean we’ve cried and laughed simultaneously (especially you), but seriously, we’ve stuck together through it all. 

Melinda Xu, for being the Saiki to my Nendo

We’ve known each other for years and years, but my earliest memories of us are of me being obnoxiously loud at our 6th-grade math table while you were trying to do your work. Well, it has been five years since then, so I guess it’s no shock that things have changed. However, I wouldn’t have expected that you are the one I send completely unhinged Instagram posts to upwards of thrice daily. Also, I’m not sure if I should really be thanking you for this, but the uQuizzes we take during class rather than doing our assignments take up the best time I have ever wasted. That’s just one of the many priceless memories I’ve made with you; The Jungle, minion feet, dark yellow, and you getting the uQuiz result of being a certain redhead are some of the others that linger in my mind.

Saniya Mishra, for being the most presidential president of our club

While P.A.C.E. is perhaps not the best display of our friendship, we can get down to business and work really well together when you absolutely force me to. In the most positive connotation ever, you’re scary. Scary passionate, scary driven, scary smart, scary inspiring. You need to be a motivational speaker or something because even just looking at you lights a fire under me. You are a go-getter, and I want to go-get with you someday. Don’t ever slow down for me, but every day, I practice so we can run side-by-side eventually. Figuratively, of course. I don’t have the motivation to actually run quite yet.

Jiya Patel, for literally everything

I can’t even choose one thing about you to thank you for. When I say everything, I mean everything. Your sense of humor is unlike any other, and your sitcom life is absolutely entertaining to hear about. On top of that, you’re incredibly intelligent, but you don’t brag about it—you haven’t once. Life’s a box of chocolates, and I think we both got a few too many that leave an odd aftertaste in our mouths. You’ve never complained about it though, and honestly, it’s a relief to me when you do on the rare occasion because then I know that you can really trust me. I’m always blathering about my life to you, and I’m happy that you’ve started to reciprocate. 

Mr. Labenz and Ms. Beckett, for making AP Seminar bearable

Based on the fact that this is being published on TCT, it’s fair to say that a lot of my time is taken up by writing. And, because of that, I tend to dread writing in any of my other classes. I’ve never really been one to enjoy school that much, but I always look forward to Seminar, because of its relaxed atmosphere and the pleasant environment that you two create. Even on the essays that I stumble through, all of the comments I get are constructive and supportive while still helping me to improve. I don’t usually see my teachers as someone to get along with; I usually just do whatever they tell me to and go on with my day regardless of how kind they are. However, you two always seem to know exactly what to say. I do need to be put in my place once in a while, which you both understand, but I can tell that you let me have my fun and make the class as tailored to each student’s learning as possible.

Ellory Zietz, for supporting me in whatever I do

It’s fair enough to say that some days, I am a walking disaster. In spite of this, you have chosen to be my friend and accepted the baggage that comes with that. Yes, I have a breakdown over text every other day. Yes, I can get a little too riled up a little too fast. Yes, I have trouble understanding other people (and frankly, have just failed to recognize what you’ve been through). Somehow, you’ve always been behind me to give me a slap on the back and a posture check before cheering me on as I evolve as a person. I find that a lot of people struggle with accepting change, but you’re right in stride with whatever any of your friends are thinking.

Emma VanTongeren, for silent laughs

I think everyone knows that when you have a really good laugh, I mean a really good laugh, no sound comes out except for an even more hilarious wheeze? That sums up every time either one of us makes a joke. Because of this, you’d think we don’t accomplish anything together, but interestingly enough, we actually work exceptionally well together. Your easygoing personality and my wound-up one somehow work hand in hand. I’ve been really bummed these past two years that we haven’t had much of a chance to work together, but when this year rolled around, we finally had a class together and see each other periodically in the hallways, and I couldn’t be happier.

The TCT gang, for shaping me into the writer that I am today

I accidentally signed up for TCT thinking that it was a creative writing class for novels and whatnot. I promise I research before making decisions nowadays. I always had a fairly large ego when it came to writing, and honestly, I got kind of humbled when I stepped into Writing for Publication. While that sounds upsetting, I have grown more quickly as a writer in my three years in this class than I think I had ever before. Thank you so much to everyone in this class and Mr. George for being open and accepting while helping me become a stronger writer.

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