A dear family friend is going to college this year. Today is his graduation/college celebration. I wrote him this letter as my two cents:
Best four years of my life.
College is the most amazing experience – especially if you’re lucky enough to have parents pay for it.
Think about it.
You get to take classes you want, when you want, how you want and then do whatever the hell you want with the rest of the time you have.
Some people spend that time stoned out of their mind.
Some people spend that time sitting in the library bored out of their mind.
If I can, I want to challenge you to really take advantage of these four years.
They will never happen again. Even if you do grad school your parents won’t take care of all the finances and working sucks. Even for people who get paid a lot and are high ranking, works sucks. Not all the time, but more than you think.
Here are things I think you should try:
1. A Sport – intramural or NCAA
2. A girlfriend – they are time consuming but they are also super important in terms of social development
3. Tequila – be prepared. The story of 3 tequila… FLOOR is true, especially in my case when cups were Styrofoam and not shot glasses.
4. Midnight adventures with your friends. Some of my best memories are roaming Ralphs and Vons drunk off my ass 1 in the morning. And getting amazing Mexican food at all hours of the night. And talking philosophy and theories on life with my friends when the hour is dark and the night wraps you in mystery. There is something very alive and magical about the hours between 1am and 5am. Enjoy them, live them.
5. Making friends with your professors. Make friends and learn about them. Learn what makes them tick. Why they do what they do.
6. Go to office hours. You need the professor to give you a break the last week of class; well you’re not getting one unless the professor knows who you are.
7. Which brings me to this point, go to class. Seriously. Sit in the first couple rows, engage the professor and do your homework. If you want good grades it takes more than showing up for tests and acing them, especially in your undergraduate classes.
8. Take lots of different classes and broaden your mind.
9. Go to a poetry slam.
10. Go to the shows and festivals the school offers.
11. Be active in your school. Really take advantage of this time to explore yourself.
12. Have a purpose. Life should be lived with a purpose. I really struggled with this one in college. I got lost in college land and my degree became my purpose. Yes, you can get your degree. Just do well in your classes. But life isn’t about your degree. It’s about what you do with it. So think about what you want out of your life and make it happen.
13. Wear a condom. Lifestyles ultra thin are the best – they almost feel as good as the real thing. STDs are a serious problem right now. Nursing homes are running rampant with them. Funny? Ha! In all seriousness, AIDs and other crazy shit is coming back and hitting young people every day. Even if a girl swears she’s clean, unless you see the paperwork proving her words don’t gamble your life. And yes, you can get genital herpes from oral sex. And gonorrhea now too!
14. If you’re going to join a frat, don’t become a frat boy. You can be in a frat without becoming an obnoxious asshole. Trust me. It’s possible.
15. Journal. Meditate. Eat healthy. Take care of your body and mind. Sit under a tree on campus and read a book. Smile at people. (I don’t think you’ll have a problem with the smiling part, you have the loveliest smile and use it often.) If you drink, compensate with lots of water. Keep those brain cells hydrated!
This will be the hardest and best time of your life. Living away from your parents is a challenge. I didn’t do it for college but I have friends who did. They all swear that the first year hurts but then it gets way better. Make friends. Real friends. Be open to other ideas and try them out. Be a republican for a day, a democrat for another and an anarchist for the weekend. Try to see how other people feel and think. You will never have so much free time to do that kind of thing ever again. Once you start working you will come home exhausted and sucked of any energy. And once you have kids, well good luck ever taking a shit by yourself until they go off to college.
If you’re looking for places to pick up chicks, take a psychology undergrad course. Those classes are packed with hot chicks. Trust me. If you need a few ideas to help this process along I’ve heard “The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists” by Neil Strauss is supposed to be pretty awesome.
The biggest lesson college taught me was I didn’t know half the things I thought I did before college. And none of this knowledge was academic.
Oh and if you need someone to talk to, you can always call me. I’ve been there and done that and I’m not your parents so I have a new, fresher perspective on college life.
Good luck and enjoy.
Meet the Blogger!
I'm a mom. A writer. A lover of good fantasy. A proponent of nursing when possible. A birth advocate. I am absolutely horrible at keeping my house clean or the dishes washed or the laundry done. I strongly believe in women having a positive birth. When we start to respect women's rights to birth the way they want, we can start to treat women as equal people in this world.
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