You Live and You Learn.

Posted: September 22, 2011 by jerkmag in VAULT -- archives
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I’ve come up with a way to best describe senior year and see what wisdom I can impart on all you wee-little underclassmen when I depart from this world. I’m talking about the college world, so relax before you start calling the suicide prevention hotline. You know that thing called a “mid-life crisis” that many of your dads probably went through and you hear about so much?

Well, when I turned 20, I made a big joke about how I’m having a “quarter-life crisis.” I guess I kind of thought I was having one, mostly because I wasn’t a teenager any longer. But quarter-life crisis is actually a pretty good way to describe the feeling I’m having now, graduation looming within the year and what not. When you hit this time, you start to take a look back and reflect on just what exactly you’ve spent your entire college career doing. Personally, what it makes me think of is who I used to be.

Anyone who knows me in-depth, as you soon–yes, you there, sitting at the computer, I’m talking to you–will know when you read my every post and follow me throughout the semester, is that I like to think philosophically. I personally believe that you are not the same person you were years ago; experience, age and jadedness take its toll in many ways.

No, not that kind of Jade.

I think back to who I was at the very beginning of this entire journey that has been college. In the beginning, I had no intentions of ever coming to Syracuse University; I was actually a Criminal Justice major originally at my old school. Yep, that’s right, this current Newhouse snoot actually wanted to be a cop because back then I was dedicated to the concept of justice. I watched shows like “CSI,” read Alex Cross and wanted to be like them. I also looked up greatly to powerful fictional heroes who tirelessly stood against evil. Above all else, I wanted to help end the evils of this world. I wanted to be like them.

Me, back then. I still speak treason fluently.

I still hold true to that ideal to a certain extent, but I’ve long since surrendered the notion that I truly do know what is good and what is evil. Also, I’ve found that in this world, the bad guy has a way of not only winning, but also getting the girl in the end. One thing I’ve learned is that damsels in distress are rarely looking for a valiant champion to rise to defend their honor. (Especially if a keg is in close proximity.)

Now, however, I think I have a much clearer perspective about the world as a whole, not simply the romanticized world that we were brought up to believe in. Above all remember this kids, the world is what you make of it. Don’t care how much money you or your parents have, how pretty or ugly you are or what school you’re in. At some point, we all must face the trials of this world on our own. There are some things only we as solitary individuals can do, even if they are personal battles. My point–being something I forgot long ago–is ultimately learn to be true to yourself. In college, live and learn, but don’t ever do one over the other.

-Alex Perez

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