One of man’s greatest faults is the inability to process events that come in the long term. The fault is evident in many of the things that we do, from the inability to plan for the in a financial sense to occasional difficulties processing the long-term effects of our actions on a political scale.
Three years is a long time. If the average person lives to be 80, three years is almost four percent of their life. If someone embarks on a journey knowing that there will be a result in three years, the logical thing is that the end is something that one could prepare for.
Yet, two years, eight months and thirteen days from the first class I attended as a transfer student at Boston College, I will likely be sitting on the Beacon Street Garage roof around the time this piece will be published on BCI, contemplating the sunrise over the Boston skyline.
I suppose that graduating is a good thing. I’ve got a lot to look forward to as I plan to head down to the South to begin my pursuit of a law degree at the University of Georgia. So many of my classmates have graduate programs or employment lined up following graduation. The future is bright.
Yet for me, leaving BC brings up mixed feelings. I don’t think I’m the only one who feels this way.
A lot of it is the experience of getting old. I’ll never go to a Beanpot again as an undergrad. I won’t have four of the premier college hockey programs in the country within twenty minutes of my apartment. I won’t be able to hop on the T and go to the North End, or Assembly Square, or Harvard Square, or even Newton Centre to get a bagel at Rosenfeld’s.
Some of it is also not being around some of the most amazing people in the world. As I sat in Conte Forum, away from my customary space in the press box, I couldn’t help but notice people who I knew personally or through my travels as a writer. I sat a section over from my friend Jacob, who I worked with in the intramural department at BC. When I noticed him in the stands, I thought back to the times I worked with him, and how he helped me get up to speed on the football field, and then, eventually, the basketball court, and always did it with a smile on his face. Robert Harding gave an intercession, and I remember how he’d always greet me with a smile when we lived across the hall from each other during our sophomore year, and how he helped me get through one of the most difficult stretches of my college career. After Robert came Olivia Hussey, who ran for Executive Vice President of UGBC as a sophomore while I was a photography editor at The Heights. She executed the duties of the office well, serving in a position many of us, including myself, would not be capable of holding.
Then there’s the BCI crew, who prove to me time and time again that what was said to me at orientation in the Summer of 2014 is true: the best thing about BC is the people. They are the type of people who would drop everything just to have a dinner to celebrate a big milestone on a weekday, which included Grant driving up from Connecticut.
I could go on and on, but in Conte Forum Sunday afternoon and in Alumni Stadium Monday morning, there are countless students and classmates with incredible stories to tell and wonderful accomplishments to celebrate. There’s something that kind of sucks about not being around these people on a daily basis anymore.
But I think the real difficult part of today will be a departure from familiarity. There was something comforting in being around these wonderful people, experiencing the day-to-day life of being a BC student. There’s something to be said about hearing the melodic humming of the Green Line every day, or the chattering in Lower, or the uncomfortable cramping that comes with attending a mod party.
Ok, maybe not the mod party. But you get the idea.
And it’s all going to be gone. I’m not sure I’m ready.
But that’s how life works. Life doesn’t ask if you’re ready for it to move on, it just does, and you kind of have to accept it.
At this point, I would like to come up with something sappy to say, like what Gordon Bombay said in D2: The Mighty Ducks about ducks flying together. Unfortunately, a quick Google search showed me that eagles, in fact, are solitary birds, so that won’t help.
What I will say is this: for the seniors on the Beacon Street Garage, take solace in the sunrise. This isn’t the end, but merely the beginning. Just because we’re not all in school together doesn’t mean the bond has to die.
Some people will fall out of touch. This is the normal course of existence. But we all owe it to ourselves to stay in touch with those we care about, to grab drinks with each other when we’re in town, and to most importantly stay in each other’s lives. Failing to do so will rob ourselves of one of the greatest things BC has given us: friendship with some of the greatest people in the world.
I’m not going anywhere. I will still be writing for BCI. And I still intend to stay close with all of the people I considered my friend while I was a student here.
To depart, I have three things I want to say. First, to Miles, Kristen, T.J., and all of the other rising seniors who said to me over the past couple of weeks, saying that you aren’t ready to be seniors: you’ll be fine. Nobody is ready to be seniors, it’s part of the experience. Everyone eventually grows into the role, and you all are going to be awesome. Just make sure to take a beat every once and a while to appreciate what’s around you, because even though you might want to roll your eyes when you read this, senior year goes by too quickly. It happens to everyone.
Second, to all of the people I covered throughout my time here at BC, from Katie Crowley and Courtney Kennedy to Jim Christian and Jerry York, and the countless student-athletes I interviewed, thank you for allowing me to tell your story. It is a responsibility and privilege I will always cherish. Thank you also to Mark Majewski, Lizz Summers, Kristen Scott and Matt Lynch for helping me along the way.
And finally, to my classmates walking with me today:
We did it you guys. We freaking did it.
Don’t be strangers.
All The Best,
Arthur Bailin ‘17