I almost hit a college student with my car today.

I didn’t, though, so don’t worry (I knew you were worried).

Apparently, trying to get directions out of the (very) tiny screen of a Palm Pilot and driving are two things that the male brain should not attempt to do concurrently.

So, I’m in Boulder, Colorado. It’s a beautiful day (sunny, about 65) and I’m driving past CU, so you’d think that I’d watch out for college students (especially college students in crosswalks), but noooo, I don’t. So I almost hit this college girl, a relatively attractive female (if you’re in to that kind of thing), and in that half a second between scouring my palm pilot, looking up, noticing the girl, and hitting my brakes I get a sickening feeling in my stomach… but not because I almost plowed her over.

My lack of moral standing notwithstanding, at that very moment, for whatever reason, I felt ill because I knew I would give almost anything to be a college student again.

I’m not sure why I thought that, really. When I was in school I couldn’t wait to get out, move on with my life, not take any more finals, actually DO something, etc. But now that I’m out, it seems that I kind of want back in.

I suppose it could be the fact that this thing that naïve people tend to call the “real world” is really just a pretty big drag. It’s just so much of a letdown. In college we’re trained to be thinkers and dreamers, and we’re told (or maybe it’s just what I heard) that once we get that diploma we’ll be free to mold the world as we see fit. But now I see, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the “real world” simply exists to feed itself. The vast majority of it isn’t challenging, it isn’t forward-thinking, it isn’t revolutionary, and it panders to the lowest common denominator in a lame attempt to placate the masses with some deranged form of what we imagined real life to be.

I could be angry with the college I went to for the obvious setup for disillusionment they fashioned me with, but I’m really not. Somewhere (some days I have to dig pretty deep to find it) there seems to be this idealistic hope in me that refuses to die. Now, I realize that I’m only in my twenties and I’ve got a lot of years left for the world to try to kill it, but I do rather enjoy dreaming and hoping for a world that is just a bit more beautiful than the one I live in.

And that’s why I love college students. They don’t really know any better than to dream lofty, pie-in-the-sky dreams, and in my current “enlightened” state I think that bliss sometimes really might be ignorance.


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