Maybe in a week, I, Kate Bennis, will have a chance to read a book that Iâ€™ve picked out myself. Maybe in a week, I will be basking in the sun, cocktail with a little umbrella in my hand as the monotony of lazy lounge music (or perhaps Steely Dan?) lingers on in the open air.
Or at least maybe, in one week, I will stop waking up in the middle of the night in cold sweats because I dreamed that I was sitting in a graduation ceremony that was not my own, but rather a class of kindergarteners clad in trainerâ€™s pants, whoâ€™d just completed their run of a Safety Town course. I am graduating college and, clearly, my hopes and dreams are beginning to spurt forth like a baby who just ate some crab rangoon. And Iâ€™m doing this one alone â€“â€“ my co-columnist Nic Turiciano is quick to tell me that he is â€œnever graduating.â€ While I am certain thatâ€™s not true, he may or may not be playing Solitaire right now.
I suppose that technically I have done this before; I know that I walked at my high school graduation because I can remember how pissed off I was that our class song in 2006 was
â€œFree Bird.â€ But this is different â€“â€“ this time, itâ€™s â€œfor real.â€
First thingâ€™s first: I needed to make sure I was actually graduating.
I stopped by the journalism department to see Ananda Luttet. I briefly explained to her my dilemma about being unsure, leaving out the premises of my dreams, hoping that I was brief enough so that she wouldnâ€™t think that I was totally nuts. She pointed to a list of graduates tacked outside the door of her office. Sure enough, my name was on it. She offered to run my DARS but I thanked her politely and headed out. I had seen it written with my own two eyes.
Next, I needed to leave a legacy. Because I only have one more actual day of school left, I realized that I needed some help. And so, words of wisdom from other people will have to suffice. What do others wish that they knew while they were in college? I sent Nic out for the answer (I didnâ€™t even have time to go out looking for wisdom).
â€œNot to graduate,â€ Nick Leinen. Ramtech Manager.
â€œI wish I would have known how important having balance is. To take care of yourself and not work all the time.â€ K. Foula Dimopoulos, director of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Center, said.
Had I only known both of these things prior to this week, I feel that my time in college could have elapsed at a much more leisurely pace. Hereâ€™s hoping that you, the reader, make use of your newfound knowledge.
Finally, graduating calls for a celebration, right? Unfortunately, I really donâ€™t have time to plan a party, either; Iâ€™m moving to Brooklyn five days after I strut. Thus, I called up a little bar in Laporte that often has a local country band playing. The neat thing about planning something at a bar is that you donâ€™t have to make reservations (most of the time), theyâ€™re excited that youâ€™re coming and your carpets at home remain unscathed from PBR and peanut shells. Ready, set, go.
People say that going out into the â€œreal worldâ€ is like being thrown to the wolves. But through writing this column with Nic, I can assume that that might not be too bad. Perhaps immersing yourself is the only real way to know. Force yourself to eat 11 pounds of pizza, hurl yourself at a prize-winning cage fighter. Salsa dance even though everyoneâ€™s staring at your T-Rex arms or date someone in the time it takes to blow your nose. Then, hop on out to the wolves â€“â€“ just make sure you have something to compare it with, first.
Never Have I Ever? More like, â€œMaybe I Have!â€
Columnists Kate Bennis and Nic Turiciano can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.