A Devious Lick


Bryan Luong

The absurd “Devious Lick” trend has resulted in soap dispensers being ripped off walls, bathrooms being desecrated, and our beautiful campus falling victim to the glorified vandalism. While it may only be a small handful of students, it is a nationwide occurrence that has reached extremities in which criminal charges are being pursued. TikTok trends in the past have been intriguing, however, this particular trend transcends stupidity and ignorance to another level.


To the theme of Lil B’s Ski Ski Basedgod, this TikTok trend encourages students to hit devious “licks”, slang for a theft or heist, on school property while documenting the entire deed in hopes of going viral. In the earlier days of the trend, students would record themselves sneaking chairs, lamps, and posters out of classrooms without the knowledge of their teachers. What started off as a funny excuse to steal odd objects, most of which is paid out of pocket by teachers, took an extreme turn for the worst. 


In one specific TikTok, a student is seen parading through school hallways with the principal’s car door. You read that correctly; apparently, the student dismantled the door from his principal’s car and thought it was a grand idea to post it online, racking up well over 1.3 million likes. While it isn’t confirmed to be real, it’s no surprise that as the trend gained in popularity, the stakes grew higher in hopes of gaining attention. 


Specifically at TL, custodian Andre Groom recounts, “We’ve had soap dispensers broken off the walls, paper towel dispensers and hand blowers taken off, toilet seat covers ripped off, clogged and overflowing toilets;  these are just things that are happening that shouldn’t be happening.” Thankfully, district maintenance proved able to replace many of the damaged fixtures swiftly. 


“This is something that doesn’t bring anything positive to students, our school, or our staff. It’s immature, and that’s not what Terra Linda is about,” Principal Katy Dunlap explained. Ms. Dunlap was actually relieved that this was a national trend rather than an isolated incident, but even so, it’s disappointing not only to staff and faculty but students who had no part in the mischief. 


At the height of the trend, students possibly noticed closed bathrooms throughout campus, the only easily accessible ones being in the new Student Commons building. This was a decision that may have been necessary given the circumstances, but was obviously a major inconvenience to the majority of students. Sophomore Luca Ratra, shared his frustration with the bathroom closures. “It’s really annoying how five or so people can really ruin it for the entire school.”


While Ms. Dunlap wasn’t behind the initial call to close the bathrooms, she was the one who overturned the decision and developed a more fair and efficient way of dealing with the situation. “As the principal, it’s very important that students could get to class in time so I thought that we had to have another way of handling this… so myself and some teachers stood outside of bathrooms [during passing periods] and then we had Jay Tee review our video surveillance as well. Once we identified that it was a small group of people, we were able to get it under control.”


However, littering has always been an issue long before the trend. After every brunch and lunch, Mr. Groom closes up our new cafeteria space and begins to clean up the unnecessary mess left behind. “Please clean up after yourself. We just want to keep our campus clean and we’d appreciate all the help we can get.” 


Especially with the construction of our new building, it’s important to remember the privilege we have to access such a facility. Not only is it important to not litter to keep our campus clean, but it’s also important to be nice and compassionate to our custodians and our shared surroundings. Like all trends, they must all come to an end, but even then, we still have more work to do as a collective community. 


Let’s do better, Terra Linda.