A casual enjoyer of chicken nuggets and George Orwell, Colin Sills will disrupt any expectations you have of him. His parents, Sam and Kimberly, and his younger sister Aidan, are as likely to find him gardening as playing video games, watching ‘Goonies’ as ‘Star Wars’, listening to Creedence Clearwater Revival as Foo Fighters.
He has enjoyed Ouray School for being “chill: everyone mostly gets along,” he said, and he believes that the best approach to life is to believe that “it don’t matter, stuff is going to work out.” His pet peeve is “when people question my knowledge,” especially on subjects like American science fiction (Ray Bradbury’s ‘The Martian Chronicles’ is his favorite book) and certain periods of history, where his knowledge is substantial.
How does he know so much? “I just read things, sometimes,” he said, self-effacingly; but that curiosity serves him well. Or is it all an act? He emulates Ferris Bueller, who marveled, “Incredible, one of the worst performances of my career and they never doubted it for a second.” As playful as Ferris, Colin enjoys making people laugh. His classmates regularly quote memes and videos he sends around. “Listen carefully,” Colin says: “Inadebenending.”
One of his best academic experiences was Space Camp last summer, five days during which he got to meet members of the space program and was chosen to function as flight controller for a (simulated) extended duration Mars mission. “It was hilarious because they played it up to be this really important thing, and then they went around and killed everybody” in the simulation, he said.
At Ouray High School, Colin’s work has been nothing if not original. In his adaptation of ‘The Odyssey’ during freshman English, for instance, he created the immortal character Glarbo, and followed him through dozens of pages of adventures.
After graduation, Glarbo will hit the road again, moving to Springfield OR. After completing prerequisites at Lane Community College, Colin will transfer to Oregon State and study botany, hopefully one day working for NASA. Colin Sills, space botanist? Why not?