Some people might have you believe that life ends after college, but it doesn’t. Just as it was hard to imagine graduating from high school, it is hard to imagine graduating from college. Of course, college is a little different in that it is — for most — the final time spent in formal schooling.
Goodbye to paper assignments, goodbye class registration. I could take the time to reminisce about college and all of the things I will miss, but I would rather speak about what I look forward to encountering in the “real world” once I graduate and leave Lawrence.
1. Pleasure reading. While I always spend some time at school reading for fun — at the neglect of my assigned readings — after graduating I will be able to find more time to read the things I specifically want to read. There will be no more “I don’t want to read this but I have to for class.” Finally I can tackle some of the “classics” or “great” works that I have been meaning to spend some time on, classics such as “Don Quixote,” “Ulysses” and “Gravity’s Rainbow”.
I also won’t feel so guilty when I want to read the autobiography of Wilt Chamberlain, “Wilt: Just Like Any Other 7-Foot Black Millionaire Who Lives Next Door.” This very well may be an overlooked gem.
2. Anonymity. Do you remember this feeling? It’s hard to remember what this feels like after four years at Lawrence. I just can’t wait till all the dinner parties and other casual encounters when I can make up so many elaborate lies about myself. “Excuse me, it’s actually ‘Doctor Wyse.'” “Yes that’s right, I work for the Chicago Bulls.” “You want to meet DMX, let me tell you, he is not easy to talk to.” It’s electric, this idea that the people you meet might not already have preconceived notions about you.
3. Cooking/food. Now, this might not apply to anyone who lives in Greenfire, SLUG or Co-Op, but I think its safe to say that most people don’t find their cooking talent in college: It’s a combination of things. You have a meal plan, which makes opportunities for cooking few and far between.
Personally, the only cooking I do is make mac and cheese, and I can do that just as well drunk as sober — it’s not too demanding or inventive. I think now I’ll try and experiment — maybe put some peppers into my mac and cheese, liberally apply some cheese wiz; the possibilities of things you can put in mac and cheese are endless.
4. A change in scenery. I know the Lawrence campus pretty well by now. Between napping and drinking just about everywhere on campus, I’d say I’m well acquainted. I’ll find some new places out there in the great American frontier in which to nap and drink. There are lots of libraries in America I haven’t checked off yet.
5. Making money. Just kidding, this isn’t going to happen anytime soon.
My point is that there is a lot to look forward to after graduation. One could bemoan leaving college, or one could embrace the change. In two years, when I make my first million, I’ll let you know how lounging outside all day is: Oh wait, I already do that and I don’t have a million dollars. Well, I’d like to share one last poem now:
Being a man
Eating and building
A pyramid of success
Real people don’t fear fat
They just exercise
I’ll exercise my options
And explore the frontier
What is found is never lost
I’ll see you next fall
When I’m unemployed