Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Commencement

According to Wiktionary (which so many of my co-academicians would be shocked to see me using, but hey, it's convenient):

1. The first existence of anything; act or fact of commencing; rise; origin; beginning; start.

2. The day when degrees are conferred by colleges and universities upon students and others.

3. A graduation ceremony, from a school, college or university.

I like that it's both a beginning and an end. It's one of those rare profundities that emphasize how חכמה בגוים תאמין. And it really is, for me. It's the end of an era in my life, that's for sure, but the beginning of a new one. A continuation of the same, but in such a different way.

Some things that I learned from university:
1. You may be the only ספר תורה a stranger will ever meet.

2. It's a crazy world out there. B"H for my family, my life, etc.

3. There is no such thing as a plutonic relationship. Ever. Whether you feel emotion or not, apparantly others do...and then things get uncomfortable.

4. There are so many genuinely thinking people out there, trying to figure it all out.

5. I have it all figured out (or at least, I have the tools to figure it all out. It'll take me multiple lifetimes to actually do so).

6. There are so many people who don't think beyond their own skin - or other people's skin. And I feel sorry for them.

7. Those huge paper bags that you get at clothing stores are very useful for returning dozens of books to the library.

8. If they want to give you honors in the academic world, they tell you to wrap a rope around your neck. After much discussion, it was decided that you're gonna end up with a rope around your neck if you go the Ph.D route, so it's useful to have a colorful one.

9. Graduating as the only Summa Cum Laude in your department is a bit anticlimactic when none of your family or friends know what it means. Alas, priorities...

10. There are a lot of people who care about me, even though I disappear under a mound of books every semester. I love those people. I'm going to miss them. But they're gonna keep in touch, and I'll sharpen up my letter-writing skills once again! (And my IMing skills will reach perfection).

13 comments:

Naphtoli said...

I seem to learn number three (There is no such thing as a platonic relationship), over and over and over. One day I'll learn... or get married.
M"T on the graduation

defen said...

Congratulations, TRW. May you continue on to greater and better things.

Stx said...

Mazal tov, m'dear. I'm guessing the IM line was for me, the letter line for Leati?

Teilchi miChayil el chayil!

TRW said...

Naphtoli: Yes, yes, and yes.
(and thank you!)

Defen: Thanks! Who knows? Now that I'm going to grad. school in your city, our paths may actually cross ;)

Stx: You're so intuitive..:)
You can be part of the TRW Letter Club, too, but you have to initiate! ;)

Scraps said...

As the song says, "Closing time--every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end."

Regarding lessons learned:
1) I went to a Jewish college (there's more than one, surprise surprise!), so I didn't have this as a university experience. However, it is a good lesson to take through life.
2) It's a crazy world...and you're darn lucky that your family doesn't make it crazier.
3) Cry it from the hilltops, hon, cuz there are way too many people who still think platonic relationships can and do exist.
4) Baruch Hashem yom yom.
5) Shkoyach...wish I could say the same.
6) Unfortunately this is a characteristic of way too many people in this world. I feel sorry for them too.
7) The thing with the huge paper bags is that they're meant to hold clothing, which is considerably lighter than books. When in doubt, double-bag it.
8) LOL! :-D
9) Pshhhh. I know what it means.
10) You're very lucky. Hang on to those people, because they'll help you through life.

TRW said...

Scraps: love the responses!

Re:
#3. It's one thing to say it, but as Naphtoli pointed out, it's a whole different ballgame to believe it...
#5. Note that I didn't say that I had it all figured out, just that I have the tools for it...you do too :)

Eli7 said...

CONGRATS!!!

Karl said...

Mazel Tov on the graduation!

leati said...

woohoo!!!
congrats!!

TRW said...

Leati and Eli7-Thanks! IY"H by ya'll ;)

Karl-Dare I say ditto? Not on graduation, but still...;)

Karl said...

You may dare!

dragon said...

congratulations on your graduation
good luck with whatever you do next

socialworker/frustrated mom said...

congrats and may you have lots of luck in the future.