Friday, February 3, 2017

Hello there, friend,

When I started college, I had to take a class called Freshman Seminar. It was mandatory for everyone at my small liberal arts college, a place for incoming freshman to get their bearings. Required reading included Chaim Potok's The Chosen and a binder full of information about the college. On the first page of the binder was a quote from a professor who would later become dear to me: "Only boring people get bored."

I'll be honest: I had no clue what that meant. My version of entertaining myself included driving around at night with my friends and watching an unhealthy amount of TV during the day. I didn't know much about boredom, and when it struck, the television was the easy answer. Back then, I didn't read much. I played softball and worked a part-time job at the grocery store. I wasn't a particularly interesting person, but I didn't need to be.

As college began to rub off on me, I realized I was actually interested in a lot. I went to bible studies and joined the gospel choir. I edited the school newspaper and revived the long-dead literary magazine. I played intramural sports and still found time to play pranks on my friends. I credit that time largely to shaping my goal of being a life-long learn, of being curious and interested, of always believing there's something new coming down the line. Sure, it's easy to put a screen in front of our faces, but there's a lot of living to do. I never want to forget that.