Fifteen years ago, we were the High Achievers.
On a sticky morning in December, 2008, we stopped at a newsagent to buy The Daily Telegraph. According to a few frantic phone calls, we were on the front page.
Sure enough, there we were. It was an appalling photograph. More than a decade later, it still is. As we bought the paper, we smiled creepily at the newsagent – who completely ignored us.
We were twins who had received almost identical results. We both got Premier Awards, and one of us topped the state in Extension History, while the other came fifth. Back then, it was a UAI instead of an ATAR, and we got 98.50 and 98.30.
They weren’t the top marks in the state by a long shot, but it was an easy story for journalists to run with. Twins doing weird twin s**t, etc. Works every time.
A television crew was at our house the morning we opened our results, and we were interviewed by a bunch of radio stations. There were photographs and sound bites and lots of people exclaiming “Congratulations!”
It’s hard to say who was more surprised. Us, who had never been called ‘High Achievers’ in our entire lives, our parents who had never considered us High Achievers in our entire lives, or our teachers who were just pissed off because we were always forgetting a blazer or a hat.
We were the High Achievers, and for a while it was all exciting. There was a fuss and Dad rang our grandpa and one of our teachers cried.