JakeWatts23's Wiz-Blog

The Finish Line | June 4, 2010

Friday: June 4, 2010

Walking to my last class ever today was a pretty wild experience, you know one of those “holy crap this is definitely going to be the last time I go through this again” moments. Everything that has gone on this quarter has been different and I’ve done a pretty good job (according to me, myself, and I) at soaking in the last days of college. In honor of finishing classes today I wanted to take some time out of my day to reminisce on the non-serious, but all important lessons learned in college and also to commemorate the things that are great and also the things that stink about as bad as a group of European soccer fans packed into a bar.

The Centerfold aka The Best Parts

At the end of the day, it is about having fun

I think that the reason why so many of the future elders of America refer to college as “the best four years of your life” is not because of their current occupational woes or that their 4-year term was spent more on tour with Jimi Hendrix or Led Zeppelin, but that at the end of it all, what you do in college really doesn’t matter to the bigger picture and its more about having fun. It is something that you only realize when your either in fire (or currently being pushed in, say hey if you feel the heat and your being pushed in…hey), that is the real world. Hindsight is 20/20 and crystal clear here. There is one fact that everyone who is done or has been done can agree about college: everyone will always be willing to go back and do it all over again, regardless of how great or terrible the first ride was. College is contagious. The late night drinking with friends (more on this later), the getting out on your own for the first time, spending your own money on THE MOST OUTRAGEOUS CRAP (also more on this later), falling in love for the first time, the fights, the vibrant perspective of the world is yours and you can do whatever you want, unhealthy diets, sleeping in, skipping class, experiencing your first hangover (and then having that become pretty much a staple of every weekend morning), and whatever else it is that defines your four years. College is the ultimate personalization of whatever you want it to be and that’s why its so unique and thats why it is so memorable to everyone.

I remember being brought to tears, (yeah I said it, tears) literally to the ground in tears after I thought that I had failed an accounting final, and the shear thought of having to redo the class that to me represents the anals of business all over again was the worst thought I could have ever had (Accounting = Anals because its a necessary function of the business body, its just not fun nor sexy, fact). The undertone though was that test really represented a turning point. It was a really rough quarter and after that test it hit me. I’m not going to be an accountant, I’m not going to be in this position again in the rest of my life; no one was harmed by me failing a test, a family didn’t go hungry that night because I couldn’t depreciate an asset and fill in a correct bubble! No that’s real world stuff, not college stuff. College is meant to teach valuable lessons and skills that equip us with the ability to go forward and make good humanly decisions. But college is not meant to be taken too seriously and that’s the best part. You ABSOLUTELY CAN skip class without risking expulsion (unless you skip as much as Tiger Woods cheats), your grades don’t matter in the working world and you can go out and drink just because its a Tuesday and thats the best part. It’s your four years in an adult playground!

To bring it full circle, college is your world to have fun, to learn, to fail, to form relationships and develop and the best part is that at the end of the day, it is about having fun.

The Late Night Drinking With Friends

This is where the business deals of college students get done. In my four years, the late night drinking with my friends will take the majority of my memory pie and I would venture to say that majority of everyone will agree. Over the years I have learned a couple of valuable rules:

-Always, Always, Always do your pregame warmups. It will save you money at the bar, save you from waiting in long lines to get drinks at parties, and it establishes your crew for the night.

-Always have a fun crew (walking a fine line right now with bro-chatter I know, but its true). It doesn’t need to be the same group all the time, but the crew is who you are sharing the adventure with so make it a championship crew (not Cleveland Cavalier like, it will disappoint at the very end)

-Never reject an opportunity that seems both attractive, feasible and fun.

-Football game tailgates, traveling to another schools marquee weekend, or going to a big event always provide the best times like a final four or the Indy 500.

-Don’t ever take your drinking adventures too seriously. Let the adventures take you, don’t chase them but ride them out and do your best to not control everything

Spending your money on THE MOST OUTRAGEOUS CRAP

College is about creating your own style, it is also the best time to spend your money on luxuries you cannot afford when you take the dive into the deep end to swim with the sharks. If I asked you right now to list the top 3 things you spend all your money on I bet you I get two of the four of these right 1) Booze and Bar Tabs 2) Clothes/Accessories/Shoes 3) Entertainment 4) “Recreational activities”. Now I use the latter of that list loosely and openly as a fill-in-the-blank status. The whole emphasis on this is that college is a phenomenal time to spend your discretionary income on whatever tangible ‘necessity’ you need and what you spend your money on defines you on your spectrum of coolness. It is a very early lesson in learning about what premiums you value, and what you want to make you happy with what you got!

Pick Up Basketball

Short, simple, and very dear to me, being handed the ability to play pick up hoops at any time for free is the best part of college. This is where I met the ballers, the set-up men, the unathletic try-hards, the ex jocks, and the dickheads. Pick up hoops has been a savior in college, the courts were my fraternity and I would recommend that anyone pledge. Some of the coolest kids I met at school I met on the basketball courts. The lesson I take away though is that there is always something that symbolizes to everyone individually in college what pick up hoops has meant to me.

Other Things that are Top Notch

Bros. Icing Bros.

Beer Pong and other drinking games

Good looking women

An Insane amount of great movie/TV show watching

Great music everywhere and in large quantities

Jersey Shore

Spring Break

The Group of Europeans Watching Soccer at the Bar aka What Stinks in Here!

Boring Classes/All Night Studying/Teachers That Shouldn’t Teach

I made it through college kicking and screaming, and to me the educational process is what I struggled with the most. Classes to me always seemed like a huge waste of time if the teacher was boring and uninspired or the material really didn’t seem to relate to anything important. This is really something that you can’t avoid though if you want that degree. I wish I could offer the advice to the young readers who are still in school wanting me to say that college isn’t about classes and at the end of the day it’s really not, but they do add value and they making getting the grade you want/deserve a lot easier. I went to 90% of my classes this year and my grades went up and stayed consistently better all year. What I will say though is if you are like me and you have a very hard time paying attention to you foreign TA that teaches English as a first language, is to bring your laptop to class and not pay attention, you’ll at least get attendance points and all your administrative stuff out of the way. All nighters are a right of passage, and they SUCK. Nothing stretches your body in ways that shouldn’t be stretched like all nighters. They throw off your weeks and kill your mood. I blame the heavy demand placed on students these days to be somewhat unfair and something that the elder generation has no means of comparison to the demands they place because of the computer era, however after one full year of depending on cramming all night, learn your lesson and don’t do it! Humans were meant to sleep, not to take adderall at 11 PM!

Frat-tastic Bros., Blonde Groupies, and Steroid Douchers at the Gym and In Society

If you know me well, you know how much I hate this demographic. Unfortunately though, this is apart of life, and they saturate colleges and college towns like water flows downstream. You can’t avoid them if you go to a non-hippie, extremely small and liberal institution (A good sign of this is how popular is that schools football team). They love college and college towns because where else can you show off how F@#$ing jacked and tan you are so casually or brag about how many times you bleached your hair and went tanning in one full day. Actually in some towns (See Columbus Ohio) you are actually pretty popular because of this. Luckily these people like to hang out with each other and they like to do so where there’s incredibly loud and bad music where there can be no human vocal interaction that may tip any level of knowledge or insecurity. So if you aren’t one of them it will suit you best to just stay away from the needle and the tanning bed.

People That Aren’t Ready to Handle College

If you have ever had a bad roommate before that has maybe consistently forgot to pay a cable bill, punched a large hole in your wall nullifying your security deposit, gets in a fight 50% of the time they go to the bar, always is asking you to spot him/her for food/rent/gas, or someone that just constantly gets under your nerves for immature reasons, then this is the exact person I am describing as someone that makes college smell like a fart. Granted though everyone is not perfect and college is about learning a lesson and growing up and thats why I will give this group a break. But I will tell you I have found these people to be a major source of frustration in college and that is why they stink

Other things that deserve to be mentioned for their fart like odor

Pop culture

Spring break

Being broke

College arrogance and ignorance

Homeless people

Jersey Shore

Now that it’s all over I feel ready to move on. If I had to do it all over again, I would love the opportunity to try out college from a different college’s perspective while maintaing my current hindsight and I hope that you would too. I think that there’s a great (and highly unlikely) business opportunity at letting adults relive “the best four years of their lives”. But now that is over it’s time to move on and focus at making the next part of my life better than the last part, because I hate to think that I have already peaked when I most certainly have not. I think that a fresh focus to anyone that’s post college is to making the present era better than the past, and knowing that the new era will be better than the present.

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