Satire: Random Instances of Spontaneous Combustion Amongst Students During Finals Season

Eitan Shere

Stress can embody itself in people in a variety of ways: some people grind their teeth, some fidget their hands, and some rock back and forth. These nervous habits can easily be seen at West Bloomfield High School, especially since finals season is here. However, a new phenomena has arisen amongst stress-ridden students: spontaneous combustion.

The first case occurred on January 10. Eleventh-grader Spencer Hanson had been studying for Honors Algebra 2, AP Environmental Science, and AP World History for two weeks. His mother said that he “hadn’t slept in four days and had been staying awake from lethally- sized doses of Red Bull.” At 10:38, while walking in the hallway, the shear stress overtook Spencer, causing him to erupt into a giant ball of flames. “It was crazy,” said an anonymous student who was at the scene. “One moment he was just walking, and the next, he spontaneously combusted.”

While some religious groups are attributing the incident to divine intervention, theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking has a different theory. “This kid had a lot of studying on his plate. I mean, like, environmental science? What the h–l is that?” He later followed up by saying: “All of my previous scientific theories are now invalid. Back to the drawing board.” The United States Department of Education released an official statement on January 11: “The United States Department of Education condemns all instances of spontaneous combustion on school grounds. Engaging in this activity can be particularly dangerous and distracting to other students.”

Over the course of a week, three more students have spontaneously combusted. Data shows that this year has provided a sharp increase in human spontaneous combustion cases. From the beginning of time up until January 10, zero people have spontaneously combusted. Experts predict that the amount of future cases will depend on a combination of schoolwork ease and repentance for humanity’s sins.

The United States Health & Human Services Department has given advice to those in danger of spontaneous combustion: “Hang out with your families. Take your dog for a walk. Just do something besides studying.” The United States Department of Education, however, responded harshly in a formal announcement: “Any students caught walking dogs or socializing with their families will be severely reprimanded.” This resulted in a great number of students moving out of their homes and into their local high schools, where they are supplied with, according to education officials, “… enough food and water to allow for a continuous twenty-four hour studying cycle.”

Cases of spontaneous combustion have increased dramatically within students living in schools. This has caused a sharp decline in the high schooler population across the country. Researchers predict that 7% of students will be alive by the time the finals exams begin. Protests have formed outside high school buildings, with the hashtag #finalsruinlives trending across all social media platforms. One principal reportedly responded to the backlash from his office window: “You do want to get into good colleges, right!?”

Finals season can always be stressful on students, but this year is something special. Never before has preparing for a test been this stress-inducing. Whatever the case, things are looking dismal for the future of our nation’s high schoolers.