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Schenectady High School student insists on laser cat pic for yearbook photo

Draven Rodriguez says he just wants to stand out for his senior portrait.

By Gabrielle Levy
Schenectady High School senior Draven Rodriguez wants this photo with his cat, Mr. Bigglesworth, to be his portrait in the school yearbook. (Courtesy of Vincent Giodano/Trinactia Photography)
Schenectady High School senior Draven Rodriguez wants this photo with his cat, Mr. Bigglesworth, to be his portrait in the school yearbook. (Courtesy of Vincent Giodano/Trinactia Photography)

SCHENECTADY, N.Y., Sept. 12 (UPI) -- One New York high school student is making a play to be the hero of Internet this week with his excellently absurd high school photo.

Schenectady High School senior Draven Rodriguez is petitioning for the school to allow him to submit a rather untraditional portrait for his yearbook picture: one featuring his cat, Mr. Bigglesworth, and some lasers.

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"I don't want to go in the yearbook with the generic 'I-look-like-everyone-else' photo," Draven, 16, told the Daily Gazette. "I wanted a 'He looks great. Only he would try that' photo."

"When people look at it," the 16- turning 17-year-old added Wednesday, "they will know that was me."

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The picture features Draven in a suit, holding his bored-looking feline up to his face. A larger photo of the cat's head floats above him, with pink and blue shots of light criss-crossing the frame.

Draven said the picture has not yet been denied, and started a petition -- which has nearly 4,000 signatures -- to encourage the school to allow it.

School district spokeswoman Karen Corona said the picture can go in the yearbook, just not in the senior portrait section.

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"That will not appear in the portrait section," she said, noting that some uniformity is required for the portraits. "There are other places in the yearbook where those photos can be placed."

"It doesn't mean the photo won't be in the yearbook," she said. "It just means it won't be in the section where the more professional photos are."

Just in case, Draven had a more traditional picture taken, wearing a suit and tie. But he may get the last laugh: Mr. Biggleworth is still in the portrait, in the form of a lapel pin.

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