Resting in the chaos


Kristine Cho

The philosophy of care ethics relies upon the fundamental belief that human existence is defined by the social web humans have created around themselves. It places caring and relationships at the center of moral dilemmas, prioritizing the duties inherent to the bonds people share. These bonds people make and break have come to define their personalities, their identities, and in turn, their very lives.
Thinkers that work with care ethics focus on revolutionizing the way they think about morality and the human condition, reorienting from nebulous concepts to the tangible interactions they encounter everyday. Through the camera lens, I hope to capture some semblance of the importance connections people have in their lives, beyond the grandiose and glorified ideas of interaction society harbors. Perhaps the most important part that defines their relation to others are the small things, the minutiae of it all that paints a connected aesthetic.
Juniors Dilan Kurukulasuriya and Valerie Besser spend a combined two hours with each other in the EEE room every other day amid their tumultuous lives as they journey through their third year at RBHS. Between the pandemonium of lunches, there’s a period of calm and peace that the two friends take advantage of by embracing the quiet in half whispered questions about physics homework or claiming the empty space for their own laughter. It’s also a time of rest in their busy schedules, with the both of them often caught up in work from Advanced Placement classes and obligations with the marching band.

The two friends work without boundaries as they navigate a shared assignment on the same piece of paper.
“AUT gives us a whole block to work and spend together and in the midst of all the other chaos[es] of life and school and everything in between,” Kurukulasuriya said. “It’s nice to just have a quieter setting where there’s not really any expectation for what needs to be done.”
Minutes before the bell rings for B lunch, Besser rests her head on Kurukulasuriya underneath the EEE room’s “thankful tree.”
Besser and Kurukulasuriya unwind during their AUT between pages of academics, taking advantage of their break from the chaos of school.
In the EEE room, the two are inseparable, their work papers mere centimeters from the other’s, heads resting on shoulders and fingers intertwined. When not wading neck deep in numbers, they’re play fighting with pencils, racing in wheeled chairs, or trying to get each other to eat lettuce as part of a running inside joke. Their AUT takes them through energetic highs and quiet lows, a mix of study and play and a reflection of their friendship. From meeting each other as mellophone players in their freshman year, the two of them have marched through the moments of rest and chaos of their first two years of high school together.
“We’ve kind of navigated high school together,” Besser said.
Juniors Dilan Kurukulasuriya and Valerie Besser collaborate closely to decode their physics homework and attempt to stay focused during their AUT.