Debate is hard work. This is even more true if you desire to do well, and by checking out the THS Debate trophy case, you can see that a lot of debaters, past and present, have put in a lot of hard work. As the team prepares for the State Debate Tournament, the hard work of the regular season is tripled... no, wait... quadrupled, as we strive fill the big shoes that past debaters have left us.
As a member of the 4-Speaker Debate team, I have it easy. The nature of 4-Speaker debate is that four people will comprise a team, instead of the normal two. This means that two of the members debate exclusively the affirmative, or pro, side of this season's topic and the other two debate only the negative, or con, side. I happen to sit on the affirmative side of this equation, so for the past week-and-a-half or so, I have been trying to figure out a way to "substantially increase social services for persons living in poverty in the United States." Meanwhile, my negative friends have been finding reasons why this shouldn't happen.
The rest of the State squad, however, has to be able argue both sides of the topic. This is known as 2-Speaker debate.
Because of the Tonganoxie debate squad's tradition of excellence, we have been hard at work developing arguments and "counter-arguments." But all this work is not without reward. Twice a week, we get together for "Squad Nights," a time for the squad to get together to do little research and have a lot of fun. Oops, I mean have a little fun and do a lot of research. It's not uncommon for senior members of the squad to bring homemade macaroni and cheese, or delicious caramel chocolate cake. And, if the mood strikes us right, we'll partake in a little unplanned squad bonding, or "squanding". Our squanding ventures typically consist of trips to Chipotle and... um... trips to Chipotle. Yeah, we're a very spontaneous bunch.
The traditions and pageantry of Tonganoxie debate extend far beyond that of squanding and squad nights, but if I were to tell you all our secrets... I'd have nothing else to blog about! 'Til next time, I'll be researching and squanding to my heart's content! If I'm not in the debate room at school, try looking for a loud group of teens in the nearest Chipotle.