Our team's take on "'Twas the Night Before Christmas

‘Twas the Night Before Kickoff
By Monica Bravo, George Chien, Kate French, and Cade Kane
FIRST Team 461, Westside Boiler Invasion
West Lafayette, IN

‘Twas the night before kick-off, when all through the shop
Not a power tool was whirring not even a bot
The blue banners were hung by the trophies with care
With hopes that Dean Kamen soon would be there.

The students were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of water games danced in their heads.
The mentors in polos and students in sweaters
Had stopped thinking of ways to make the game better.

When from on the nightstand, my clock started to ring
I leapt from my bed with a powerful spring
I ran to my closet and put on team gear
I dashed down the stairs with a whoop and a cheer

The fresh morning air sent chills down my spine
Nothing but robots were ensnared in my mind
Not even the blanket of fresh fallen snow
Could divert my thoughts of Woodie Flower’s glow

After a short drive to where we were meeting
I gave a mentor a warm-hearted greeting
My friend told me “hi!” with a punch in the shoulder
While my coach’s eyes lit up with a smoulder

“Now Programmers! Now, Tech! Design and Outreach!
On Wiring! On Animating! On Mentors who teach!
Through the door! To the seats! And the sides of the hall!
Now sit down! Sit down! Sit down all!”

As everyone chattered louder and louder
Trying to overwhelm others with higher power
The chit chat dimmed when the coach rose from his chair
Then stopped altogether when the speakers did blare

We got the lowdown, new happenings in FIRST
Holding our breaths and expecting the worst
There were some new things with finicky detail
But still no one knew what the game would entail

We had spent some time guessing, examining clues
Who’d thought of the numbers, they must be amused.
Still we watch the stream and listen to speeches
Sharing FIRST’s message and the morals it teaches

We heard Dean’s Homework and the game design team
They sat there smugly, having chosen the theme
We learned about light bulbs that we all would sell
But still what the game was, no one could tell

And then, with a twinkling, I saw the logo
Wanting a water game, but that was a no-go
And then the name of the game flashed onto the screen
Obviously excited, I let out a scream

The announcer’s monotone voice filled the air
Those who had heard it chuckled without a care
He stated the game and explained all the rules
Everyone stared with their mouths open, like fools

The animation contained plenty of bots
We’d seen them before, still we loved them a lot
And though some of them break the rules of physics
I think they are cute, ignoring the cynics

We sprang into action, and all started to think
Fueled with excitement and our mountain dew drink
I would like to exclaim though we’re all still dumbstruck
Happy Kick-off to all, and to all we wish luck


Yeah, the staring dumbfounded at the video still happens to me, even as a mentor. Especially if the animation starts unexpectedly.

Last year our team almost missed the animation, we had been watching the entire time and our team leader started making an announcement. A half minute in, we all started yelling to sit down because the animation had started. It was pretty funny