Back to school, eh? That’s got us thinking.

And remembering. Thinking and remembering. That’s what we’re doing.

Fondly or not, we’re flashing back to our old school days—and we’re inviting you to experience every bad haircut, heartache, and hardship we endured along the way.

Does anyone have a happy memory from kindergarten to college graduation? Sure they do! Uh, maybe. Let’s find out.

Jerry Lee, Marketing Strategist

Yikes! School was interesting enough when you weren’t trying to impress your friends, but that’s when I really amped up my stupidity.

I have a number of examples that would make you think I hated my experience (making a late entrance to a band performance and falling “up” the stairs—with trumpet in hand—in front of the entire middle school student body, anyone?).

But if I could go back, I’d do it in a second.

Teaching the art class how to use Paint on a Macintosh, finding out girls aren’t as impressed as you’d think with loudly winning a race to “drink” jello through a straw, or having your first illustration selected for Kids Corner magazine… they’re all so innocent and so simple, and yet they’re as good as any adult moment you’ve planned for for months.

I do have one regret, though.

My friend Chris used to pick on girls in fifth grade by walking behind them and kicking their trailing foot behind their planted foot mid-step, to make them stumble. Just a bit of confused flirting. Walking behind Chris, I saw the reaction he got, but with a crowded view, I didn’t realize what he actually did to make her stumble. Apparently, he didn’t just kick her in the shin… which is what I tried later, only to a slightly different reaction.

Sorry, Nicole. I hope you’re walking better these days.

Tyler McElhaney, Graphic Designer

I bleached my hair in middle school.

I thought I was really cool.

Then people kept saying it was neat that I didn’t care what everyone else thought or what they said.

Never did that again.

James A. Colombo III, Copywriter & Content Strategist

Here’s a quick list of random memories from my grade school days, ranging from 1990 to 2003. And again in 2010.

1. In kindergarten, Elisa DuBow had a birthday party at a roller rink. But I couldn’t skate. So when I went to take a whiz—on skates—I couldn’t balance myself and peed my pants. This was especially devastating because that was the day I was going to make my big move on my crush, Emily McMahon. That never panned out, of course. Thirty-two years later, I still can’t skate. And I’m still prone to peeing my pants.

2. The next year, in first grade, I got caught looking up the teacher’s skirt doing story time. It was probably the most shameful and experience of my life. Why am I telling you this?

3. In sixth grade, I got one of those George Clooney haircuts. They used to call that style the “Caesar.” I thought it looked pretty good. I was excited about it. But then on Monday, Mike Bucelli told me that Jamie Jordans said the haircut made me look “fatter.” That hurt—but she wasn’t wrong. Still, though. Ouch.

4. Senior year, I crashed my car into a telephone poll. I was swerving to avoid a family of ducks crossing the road. Nobody believes that, but it’s true. Billy Wilson was riding shotgun. I’d encourage you to ask him to verify the account, but you can’t, because he’s dead. Not from the car crash. From the war in Afghanistan. Um, this has taken an unexpectedly dark turn. Whose idea was this, anyway?

5. I taught one full year of 7th grade ELA at Tonawanda Middle School. I don’t think I was very good at it. I yelled too much. But we laughed a lot, too. That’s life, I guess. My biggest regret is not encouraging more kids to explore their interest in the trades. In short: Teaching is hard.

Uh, that’ll do for now.

Please send your concerned comments and angry emails to [email protected]. Thanks for reading.

Lisa Hinterberger, Graphic Designer

Probably one of the best memories of high school was making it to the state finals for lacrosse my junior year.

This was a pretty big deal since no WNY woman’s lacrosse team ever made it past regionals.

Making it to States, though, was bittersweet because it fell on the same day as our prom. And, sadly, we ended up losing to a powerhouse team from Central New York.

But Kiss 98.5 caught wind of our prom-less lacrosse team and decided to throw one for us at a local country club! So not only did we make it to states that year, but we also had our prom, too!

Alyssa Boczar, Senior Account Manager

I always liked school.

In grade school, you could find me in the soprano section of chorus or trying out for the talent show.

In middle school and beyond, I took to the stage in drama club and participated in an International business club DECA.

My senior year, I was elected to serve as secretary for New York State DECA, getting to help organize our state wide competition and travel to various events throughout the year to represent New York.

Bonus back-to-school fact: Lisa and I went to school together! I think we were in the same class at one point in elementary school. And we had lockers near each other in high school. Now we work together.

What a small world!

Steve Lingle, CEO

Freshman year of high school. Lunch time. I don’t have a ton of friends (still don’t today) so my older sister invites me to sit at their table.

I’m in. Cool kids, hot eats.

I grab a well-outfitted salad from the salad bar and make my way over to the table. Small problem: one chair short. No big deal. I put my tray on the table and grab a spare chair. Just need to lift it around a couple people and land it safely on the floor.

Another small problem: On the way down to the floor, said spare chair clips my lunch tray, launching my well-outfitted salad onto the floor. OK. I’m fine. Time to regroup. I gather the loose lettuce, head back to the salad bar, and acquire a new salad.

The cafeteria staff couldn’t have been more lovely and accommodating.

En route back to the table, I stop at the trash can to get rid of the OG salad. I slide it off the tray, right into the trash—and along with it goes my brand new salad.

Two salads, one tray, one trash can. No lunch. Time for the empty-handed walk-of-shame back to the table.

“They didn’t give you a new salad,” my sister asks.

“They did. I threw it out.”

[Confused look from sister.]

[Shoulder shrug from me.]

[Gather table scraps for vital nourishment.]

Franklin Heinzmann, Account Coordinator

I touched on it in our last “TQS takes on” blog.

Williamsville South athletics still has a special place in my day-to-day life, but all through school I was (and still am at heart) a band kid. I was the section leader for the percussion, and the drummer for the jazz ensemble by the end of my senior year.

As part of our band trip sophmore year, both Williamsville South bands (the wind symphony and the wind ensemble) competed in a national competition outside of Chicago. I was the section leader of the wind symphony percussion, working my way up to the wind ensemble, and I’d been assigned a part on the orchestra bells.

Now, when it came to pitched instruments—I was the worst. (Snare drum, bass drum, ryhtym percussion, were all my strengths.) So, for weeks on end I stayed after school practicing my tail off, doing all I could to nail this part for the big copmetition.

Fast-forward to the big day. We’re on stage and everything is going great. We get to the big finish. I remember thinking, “Only a few measures to go. Finish strong!”

Three measures.
Two measures.
Last measure.

Mrs. Conte—the wind symphony conductor and one of my favoirte high school teachers—gave the gesture to finish. And boom. I aced it.

But then, in a cruel twist, one of the mallets I was using slipped out of my hand, and hit one of the keys on the orchestra bells. The sound rang out in the dead silence that followed a great perfornamce of a really complex song.

Of course I looked down, and rushed to deaden the sound of the insturment. And then I looked up. I don’t think I’ll forget the stares I got from people in the band, in the audience, and even the judges too.

For the rest of the trip, I thought I’d ruined our preformance. But in the end, we ended up winning the award for best preformance (which was announced at a Medieval Times, of all places) and all was good in the end.

It was the first and last time I played orchestra bells in high school.


There’s the bell.

It’s ringing, like in school. Which means you’re free to pack up and move along—but we look forward to seeing you again. Perhaps for some help with branding, websites, videos, or a creative campaigns. If that sounds good, contact us! Or get a project quote now.

And don’t forget to follow us for more content on LinkedInFacebookTwitter, and Vimeo.

Thanks for reading.

🎒 🏫 📚

Sign up for our newsletter...

Give us your email and get our stuff delivered to your inbox. You might not regret it.

Thanks for subscribing! You won't be sorry.

Uh oh. Something went wrong.