We Didn’t Start the Fire or Did We: Fire Frenzy At NAHS


8th floor goes down in infamy as the hottest floor on campus.

In light of the recent Billy Joel concert at Mercedes-Benz which highlighted the artist’s famed song, “We Didn’t Start The Fire”, students are concerned that the song’s message was taken all too seriously. On November 17, 2022, a fire broke out on the eighth floor of the building, sending students to jump to scary conclusions about the future of our beloved 11 stories. 

The day began like any other, with a winter chill beginning to sprout and a growing sense of holiday cheer sprinkled throughout the school. Students rushed into the building to escape the freeze, only to be met with a little more than just indoor heating inside. Soon after the start of the second block, the blaring fire sirens alerted the student body to escape the heat of the flame, taking the rest of the learning day with it. “It was the most nervewracking moment of my life,” said junior Xaden Benson, “I texted my parents my last words, hoping it wasn’t a final goodbye.” 

The day commenced with the entire student body sitting on the practice field for two hours while braving the dropping temperatures, only to re-enter the building and attend the third period for the remainder of the unexpected day. The turn of events interrupted the school day entirely, leaving students with a range of mixed emotions towards the fiery occasion. What some saw as a much-needed break from reality, others saw it as stolen time. “This was so inconvenient, I couldn’t get anything done!,” said freshman Jaden Smith.

Finally, there was a light at the end of a red-hot tunnel, which was principal Douglass’s voice on the intercom stating that they had secured the perpetrator and the eighth floor had been contained. This announcement made students a bit queasy at the thought of a ‘perpetrator’ attempting to spark the flame purposefully, as this hadn’t even crossed their minds thus far. One junior Grace Nyberg was especially alarmed by the event. “Considering a ‘perpetrator’ in this situation would be an arsonist, I really hope that it is not the case.”

Though the school day dismayed hardworking students, a breezy field day could have been an unexpected necesity.  The eighth floor fire will go down in infamy in North Atlanta history as remnants of the event can still be seen by the bright neon yellow “caution” tape plastered across the bathroom entrance. So, dubs, I ask: Did we start the fire?