As a writer, I’d say that most of my best ideas have come either while I’ve been in the shower or as I’ve been drifting off to sleep. Seriously, during my two-year run as sports editor I must have mentally written dozens of articles while shampooing alone.
This article has been different, though. Recently, my in-shower brainstorming sessions have been unproductive and my nighttime thought processes scattered. Instead of inspired, I’ve just felt lost. It’s like writer’s block on steroids.
I think it’s safe to say that it finally hit me. After four years of writing for The Lamron, this will be my last article ever. I better make it count.
For the better part of four years the sports section has been my outlet. It’s been a place where I could channel my creativity, passions and opinions. A lot can happen in four years. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at my columnist photo.
During my time as sports editor, I’ve had the privilege of covering SUNYAC champions, All-Americans, national title contenders and some of the greatest coaches and players in the business. I was a part of Scott Morton’s ‘09 miracle shot, senior Lee Berube’s runner-up finish at nationals, the women’s basketball team’s SUNYAC championship run and the Ice Knights’ thrilling victory over No. 1 SUNY Oswego. I wrote about Ken Griffey Jr.’s retirement, Tebowmania, the Penn State scandal, “The Decision,” José Reyes’ departure from the New York Mets and the New York Jets’ back-to-back AFC championship game losses. The list goes on.
I’d be remiss, however, if I spent my last article only talking sports. In the end, my Geneseo experience extends so much further than the back page of The Lamron and runs so much deeper than the inside of a classroom. Get ready – this is the sappy part.
I’ll be the first to say that coming to Geneseo was one of the best things to ever happen to me. Since I’m graduating, however, I can finally say this: College, for me, wasn’t about academics – not even close. It was about the people, the relationships and the memories.
It was about the way alfalfa crept into my Jones Hall room freshman year; it was about going for a drive with no particular destination in mind; it was about having an intentional conversation with someone and sharing part of myself. It was so much more than tests, papers, projects and transcripts. Not to say that I didn’t excel in the classroom, but those aspects felt auxiliary to me. I can honestly say I went through college moment by moment, memory by memory, and I regret nothing.
To borrow a line from Bill Simmons, I’d like to think I approached my college career in the same way that Shaquille O’Neal approached his NBA career – by being great but also learning to savor the moment. With his talent O’Neal could have easily been one of the top-five players all time. Instead, he released a couple rap albums, starred in some movies and became a police officer all while having a hall-of-fame career in the process.
Regarding college, Simmons writes, “In other words, don’t kill yourself trying to become the best center of all time; just do enough to eventually get mentioned in the top 10 and enjoy every moment along the way. Shaq could have ended up with a 3.95 [grade point average] in the NBA; he settled for a 3.4. Ultimately, did it really matter?”
For me, college has been the business of making memories and – believe me – business was good. I distinctly remember this one occasion freshman year when I went to Tim Horton’s with a friend around midnight with a paper due the next morning. We were up all night, talking, laughing and, yes, writing. I’ll never remember what I got in that class, but I’ll never forget about that night. That is what college is all about.
I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that God led me to Geneseo for a reason. In short, I’m just really glad He did.