Drivin’ to the Landmark Tonight

Every spring, each class of sixty to seventy girls and are lead in twenty-something practices after and during school by an elected leader. The leader and committees teach the girls songs and motions that talk about their unique high school experience to the tunes of popular songs. One Friday in the middle of March, the classes will compete against each other at the Mosque/Landmark/Altria stage in front of each other, their teachers, families and friends, boys from the brother school, and most importantly, the judges. Each class will hide their year with their two class colors that they chose in their freshman year. That school week was spirit week, each day to dress up in the different colors, and decorate their hall in their colors and theme; Friday was a tag day to dress up according to their theme/colors. This is Saint Gertrude High School’s Song Contest.


My class is know as the class of Silver and Blue. We placed second as sophomores and won as juniors and seniors. Here we are before our junior year performance.

Let’s be honest here, Saint Gertrude is a cult, and Song Contest is Continue reading


Mid-semester Check-up: How the Gertie in Me is Doing

This is pretty much the follow up to What Saint Gertrude Didn’t Teach Me

Even though I’ve moved on from Silver and Blue to Black and Gold, part of me (a large part, actually) is still a Gertie Girl (that will probably never change). Whether you like it or not, there’s something about Saint Gertrude that sticks with you forever. My grandma always likes to tell me about how much she loves her St. Bridget’s friends who went there many moons ago, and how there’s something about the women she loved. With a semester and a half of college/real people world conquered, I’ve assimilated somewhat. Let me give you the cold hard facts. 

For starters, boys are still a myth. I don’t scream and freak out every time I see a boy like at SGHS (maybe that happened once but I apologized), I’ve actually made a few guy friends (granted most of them are gay or Sean). Talking to cute boys is hard though. It’s like someone turns the Awkward knob in my head to maximum Continue reading

Claire Gerloff’s Most Fascinating People of 2013

When I was 8 or 9, I discovered Barbara Walter’s Most Fascinating People of the Year. The excitement of the countdown drew me in everytime- Who would be number 1? Will it be Britney Spears or the Olsen twins this year? (Unfortunately, no, only in my mind). Ritually, I would cuddle up in my parent’s room and watch the program and scribble down the list in my notebook although I barely knew the people on the list. Well, since Barbara Walters and her quasi-British accent are retiring after this year, I thought I might take a stab at her next replacement and make my own Most Fascinating List.

Continue reading

Home Coming

If everyone who is doing college the normal way gets to go home for fall break, why can’t I do the same? That was Hannah’s and my commuter philosophy, so we decided to do so. So we went back to Saint Gertrude.

I’ll be honest here, for a while I was kinda like “omg college is so great I’m having so much fun here I’m not going back yet”….then I got the Saint Gertrude mailer and omg I almost cried I missed it so much. 

“OMG I HAVE TO PARALLEL PARK I HAVEN’T DONE THAT IN SO LONG” Hannah’s bittersweet recollection at our lunch date of the morning fight for street parking was just the beginning of our intense Saint Gertrude moments. We could actually find spots this time, though (pull-ins!) since we came in the middle of the afternoon. And we walked up to the best high school in Richmond together, but we were missing green kilts and Sperry’s. Mrs. Kopecko had to check us in and give us alumna tags. I don’t think I can even describe how it felt, this was a school where I could gossip with my teachers, get help on scholarship essays the day before they were due and sent out, and use my fifty pack of markers and collection of food recipes in every class. And for every stress or panic attack you had in the senior parking lot, there would be three or four girls ready to console you with hugs, kind hearts, and more than likely a cookie or two. I’m no longer in this bubble, and coming back makes me miss it so much. 

Mr. Gill’s wife had the baby. Mrs. Gallo and Mrs. McAleer share a room. Mrs. Hoggatt and Mrs. Stratton retired. Mrs. Carrig is the Dean of Students. A young man is teaching. He was wearing argyle gages and has a the Higgs-Boson particle tattooed on his arm. Red & White is in the senior hall. My little sis is a junior. There are a new set of freshman who aren’t Black & Lime, Orange & Blue. (Hey Christina I saw your sister!!) These changes aren’t bad, but they’re not part of the Saint Gertrude I ran around just months ago, when I counted down to the days of black and gold. It was great that some things haven’t changed, like Mrs. Brickley’s room or Mrs. George’s cute attitude. 

I always knew I was going to miss Saint Gertrude, but I didn’t know it would be this much. This picking out real people clothes everyday is hard, sometimes I poke around for that green polo, just to reminisce to back when getting dressed in the morning took all of five seconds and real clothes were reserved for tag days (and planned ahead months at a time). I mean, Mrs. Chase, my sophomore year chemistry teacher asked me how my art was going, and I was so surprised that she remembered that I loved art, I was quiet in her class–what other school does stuff like that happen? 

It’s funny that at my birth, my father, a Benedictine Cadet, announced that I would go to Saint Gertrude. I fought him over that until I went to the open house in seventh grade and fell in love with the school. Saint Gertrude holds a special part of me-something that VCU can never take. I’ll just keep replaying Song Contest on youtube, missing my uniform, writing more blog posts about the school, counting down the days until I go back as a teacher. 

If you get lost, you can always be found

Just know you’re not alone

‘Cause I’m going to make this place your home

-Phillip Phillips


Oh, high school

It finally hit me. The giant comet that is green and white Catholic school plaid, distinctive of only Saint Gertrude. And I miss it so much. 

Last night Hannah, Sean, and I realized it was Sponsor’s Ball, and almost went to Benedictine to crash the ball. I perused the pictures on Facebook this morning and remembered how much fun I had last year. Dressing up, meeting your friends to take pictures with them (because dates and boys are stupid), and watching your other friends be presented in a wedding dress and waltz with their cookie who–I mean Sponsoring Officer. Ever since I found out about Sponsor’s and went to the ceremony and ball freshman year, I wanted to be one. I was upset when I wasn’t asked, but majority of my class felt the same so that made it better.






I miss my Lani boo. 


And mah girl Caroline. I’m glad VMI isn’t kicking your ass too badly. 

Sponsor’s was one of those things unique to Saint Gertrude and Benedictine, that I loved so much about it. I really hadn’t thought about Saint Gertrude recently, with college classes/people/boys/and work, but seeing those pictures really got to me (You all looked beautiful!). They really made me remember how much I loved being with my Silver and Blue babies. And all those fun senior year things we did. Song Contest, New York, prom, Figure, I can’t even. Do we really have to wait five years for a reunion? 


Baby come back. 



I miss having someone always picture ready. 



Only at Saint Gertrude is there a constant supply of wedding dresses on hand. Stop judging, public schoolers. 



My little diversity group! 

Okay, that’s enough pictures for one post. Before I go do anything but my homework, I have a little bit of advice for Red&White: senior year is going to be stressful. It’s also going to be fun. Find a balance. Go to all the events, and make sure you take tons of pictures like Maya did. Get a plan of how you’re going to do everything and manage your time. And if you do get overstressed, it’s okay to cry in the senior parking lot. We’ve all done it, and you’ll feel so much better afterwords. And never, ever, forget that your Gertie girls have your back.