School Days

12:23 PM – EST

Columbia University

New York, New York

Back where it all started. Ten years ago I had just completed my first year at Columbia University’s School of the Arts. “Ten years is a long time and it isn’t,” I said to my friend Nick on the walk over from 128th and Lenox.

Still, when I think of all that has happened in that time it may as well have been another life. Aches and pains have shifted both emotionally and quite literally. In fact, my hip’s given me a little trouble the past two days; something that once seemed unfeasible even after a day of walking 100 or so long New York City blocks.

My take on the world has also changed. I hope for the better, but who’s to say really. I possessed a rare resilience when I called this campus home. These days there is still a determination to bounce back from setbacks but I suppose it’s more calculated in effort and approach. I aim before shooting whereas in my youth I’d leap without looking, which gave way to a more “wild west” disposition. No regrets though. There’s a time and place for such recklessness, but those days are thankfully gone, or at least significantly modified.

Last night, my friend Nick and I were discussing whether or not we liked weddings. “I think they’re kind of bittersweet,” I told him. “They actually make me kind of sad. I feel like I’m saying goodbye.” He seemed to understand which offered me a bit of solace as I dozed off for the evening.

When I asked my friend Ross, a 28-year old actor from Long Island, what the best piece of advice he’d ever received in his young life was he told me: “Follow opportunity. Goals and dreams can definitely change.”

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