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The official student news site of Coppell High School

Coppell Student Media

Letter from the editor: Everything is intentional

Sameeha Syed
The Sidekick editor-in-chief Sri Achanta reflects on the importance of analysis after realizing the amount of conscious decisions she makes when filming events on her digital camera. Achanta appreciates the thorough examination of stories in her IB English class.

In IB English, we are learning how to write our Paper 2 essays. The premise is to ensure that we, as readers, understand how to properly analyze the content in our books.

But this analysis part always seems particularly challenging for me. 

When writing The Great Gatsby, did F. Scott Fitzgerald intentionally describe the eyes of Doctor T. J. Eckleburg on a billboard overlooking the Valley of Ashes in order to represent God judging American society as a moral wasteland? Was this really what he wanted us to get out of his nuanced description or did we as a society overanalyze his words?

It took me a Reddit thread about Gatsby and a digital camera to finally figure it out: everything has a deeper meaning, and analyzing text has been our English teacher’s way of trying to get us to understand.

In November, I filmed a friend’s birthday with my digital camera. Trying to emulate the 73 questions that Vogue asks celebrities with a hint of “The Office,” I walked around the dinner table interviewing each one of my friends as they mingled, yelling at each other over the background music by Men I Trust and Steve Lacy.

Rewatching the videos, I realize every second of the film is intentional. I zoom into the birthday girl as she tosses her head back after we joke about her failed attempt at acting conceited. 

This framing draws attention to the subtle twinkle in her eyes and her wide smile. Zooming into this moment was my way of forever capturing the warmth of this heartfelt moment.

I could have recorded the video on my iPhone with a quality that is better by tenfold, but I chose to record on my camera, hoping to evoke a sense of affection. 

Even this mere choice has its own layer of meaning.

I’m oddly selective with the events I take my camera to, usually ones that I want to forever remember like last year’s Sidekick banquet, my DECA trips or even road trips I take with my family.

So what may seem like a fun recording of a birthday party actually holds a significance that’s more than what meets the eye. 

And if there is this much meaning just behind a memory captured by my camera, an author must put endless amounts of thought into the words that flow to form their story. As fun as it is to joke about how an English teacher will never stop harping on about the green light in Gatsby, these specific details do warrant an analysis. 

Follow Sri Achanta (@sriachanta_) and @CHSCampusNews on X.

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About the Contributors
Sri Achanta
Sri Achanta, Executive Editor-in-Chief
Sri Achanta is a senior and the executive editor-and-chief of The Sidekick. She finds joy in finding narratives within conversations to create compelling stories. In her free time, you can find her reading fantasy and mystery novels, her personal favorite book being Legendborn by Tracy Deon. Sri also enjoys painting still life, prefering acrylic paint over oil paints anytime. One of her favorite artworks is a sculpture by Michelangelo called the “Pietà”.  Sri is always up for a good plate of sushi or a meal at her favorite restaurant, Siam Thai, where she gets her go-to favorite dish which is spicy drunken noodles. She loves to top off her dinner with her favorite drink, Matcha tea. She also never passes on an opportunity to hang out with her friends and family. Her favorite childhood show is “The Wizards of Waverly Place” and she’s currently on her fourth rewatch. To contact her, you can email her at [email protected] or on 'X' (@Sriachanta_ ).
Sameeha Syed
Sameeha Syed, Social Media Manager
Sameeha Syed is a senior and the Social Media Manager for The Sidekick. Syed joined The Sidekick thinking she was going to write, but realized she enjoyed taking photos and videos more. On rainy days, you can find her listening to her favorite artist, Steve Lacey, or watching her favorite movie, Little Women (2019). Syed loves spicy, flavorful food and her drink of choice is hot chai. Syed dislikes sweets; in fact, she would take savory food over dessert any day. Syed has a super cool fashion style, and if you look at her hands, 9 times out of 10, she has on her fun accessories: her rings and her favorite watch. Syed has a list of odd things she really likes, and on that list is her emotional support water bottle and warm socks. Syed also is very much a night owl, preferring to stay awake later rather than wake up earlier. Her favorite subjects in school are history and literature courses. You can contact her on Instagram (@ssameeha) or through email ([email protected]). 

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    Sukirtha MuthiahDec 12, 2023 at 10:12 am

    Amazing story! Now I see life through a different lens!