I just returned from a night out with 3 incredible women watching Avenue Q. Muppet sex, masturbation, porn, racism, homosexuality… all crammed into a neat and tidy little musical!
It kinda of got me thinking a little deeper about school, though. Odd, I know. But there’s a particular song in the second act about wishing to be able to go back to college. It seems like a lot of “grown ups” think that way and, while it used to frustrate me because I didn’t understand looking backwards, it also make me realize just how freaking awesome it is.
I love my home town… beach, sunshine (sometimes), salt air, In n Out and Mexican food. But being home for the summer is kind of empty compared to being at school and in Boston.
At home, I don’t have a room to myself. I don’t even have a suitcase to live out of and I share a bathroom with two boys who feel entitled to treat me like crap because I’m obligated to love them. I have chores and am often stripped of much of my independence… I don’t think my parents do that intentionally, but it kinda happens when I’m a child rather than a tenant.
At home, when I want to hang out with a friend, I face complications. First off, they have to actually be 1) in town, 2) not working or in their summer classes, 3) have money to burn and 4) be willing to pick me up since I seldom can use one of my parents’ cars. The chance of any one of those occurring (let alone all four) is quite a rarity.
At school, I have at least half a room all to myself. I have my bedding, my wardrobe, my pictures on the wall. I share a bathroom, yes, but with girls. Girls who I can live with because we’re careful not to tread on each others’ toes. I have chores, but they involve cleaning up my own crap, not everyone else’.
In Boston, my friends all live within walking distance. I don’t have to burden them with picking me up or (God forbid) hanging out at my house. I can see them at all hours of the day in a variety of venues. And it’s wonderful.
At school, everything that matters to me is in a four square block section of Back Bay. Overpriced produce at Wally’s, the booths in Curry student center with the electrical plugs so I can write, the food in the basement of Curry, the bookstore, friends’ apartments and dorms, rich friends’ stocked refrigerators, Starbucks green-tea-lemonade-sweeteneds, my secret corner of the stacks, AfterHours’ weird poetry slams, Huntington News headquarters, Stetson cookies… everything I could possibly need is right there.
College really is the best years of our lives (at least so far). Luckily, Northeastern’s 5-year program grants us the opportunity to dip our toes into the “real world” (via Co-op), while also postponing the days when we are void of meal plans and parental bailouts. That extra year gives us 12 more months of searching for our “purpose” and helps to ensure that we end up somewhere closer to Avenue E or F than all the way down at Q.