Column: One more summer

TRL’s Kelsey Carroll reflects on her upcoming last summer before she splits from her triplet siblings


Kelsey Carroll

The sunroof of the 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe stays open as the Carrolls make the best of their last car rides together.

Editor’s note: The Red Ledger is on break with the rest of the school for the summer. The staff will continue coverage with the new school year in the fall.

It’s too hot to open the sunroof this time of year, but we do anyway. We like to hear the sound of the wind, but it’s too much when the windows are open. So, the sunroof of the 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe it is.

The music gets muffled under the sound, so we turn it up. Loud enough so the wind is muffled instead, and the chaos of Fall Out Boy fills the car.

It’s always that. Fall Out Boy. Maybe the occasional Imagine Dragons, depends. We’re triplets, but we don’t have the same music taste. Everyone can settle on Fall Out Boy, though, so it stuck.

My sister, Jackie, sits in the driver’s seat. We all have our licenses, but we know she’s the best driver, so I’m copilot and my brother, Ian, takes up the back seat.

As the chorus of each song starts, the jumble of our voices along with the beat is an absolute mess, but we only get louder with each verse. It doesn’t take longer than 15 minutes to get anywhere around here, so we’ve got roughly three songs to enjoy.

It’s the same every time: Fall Out Boy.

It’s always been that way, our music. Our first concert together. Our first concert, period. Fall Out Boy at the American Airlines Center, three kids screaming louder than we ever had before. Our ears rang as we blurted out half-memorized lyrics, mumbling the words we didn’t know and emphasizing the curse words we did.

The same songs even filled the upstairs level of our house two years back, and continue today. Although we’ve upgraded to Rock Band containing Fall Out Boy’s “Centuries” in the last two years, the song

Kelsey Carroll
The Carroll triplets are currently juniors and feel it is unlikely they will end up at the same college in the fall of 2020

contains the same hyper Friday night vibes as Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” and Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train” found on the 2008 release of Guitar Hero World Tour that kicked off our addiction with the game. Our so called “triplet adventures” revolve around nothing more than turning on the Xbox, sometimes spicing it up with pizza or popcorn, but always some music.

From our first day of kindergarten to Christmas parties to calculus class, being a triplet has been part of my identity. Aside from Ian’s six-week retreat to work as a Boy Scout camp counselor the last two summers, we’ve never been apart more than a couple of hours, maybe a day: max.

We see the entrance of the neighborhood approaching, and Jackie turns down the volume while I slide the sunroof closed. Not that our parents can hear the music from inside the house anyways, but I’m too paranoid to test it. We hop out, grab our backpacks and hum along to what’s left of the song playing in our heads.

Finishing junior year, summer’s finally coming. Heading off to college won’t just mean a new room, new friends, new location. After 17, soon 18, years, it’ll be the first time I’m separated from my siblings.

No matter the temperature and no matter where we’re headed, we’ll open the sunroof every day this summer, because it’s our last summer as high schoolers together. We’ve only got so many car rides left.

Once we’re off to college, I don’t know how sad I’ll get. Or how often I’ll text. Or call. Or send letters.

What I do know is I’ll have to sing alone.