Advanced in years as I am, I have seen many in your present position. Indeed, I have once sat where you sit. I have tasted the joys and frustrations that come with the position. If I may be allowed a little arrogance, I have “been there, done that.” I made mistakes, some ghastly, some trifling. I made memories and I have some regrets. I blundered and succeeded more times than I can count. Listen then to my wise counsel, for there is wisdom in experience, at least in majority of the cases.
First, take it easy on the books. Never mind them that insist you go the extra mile: to go beyond is as wrong as to fall short. What use is it to study and study, and bury yourself in books and projects, and go over your notes cover to cover ten times a month, and pass your exams, then graduate, only to join the ranks of the unemployed and become a burden to the nation, for having acquired scarcely more knowledge in your school days than how to dress sociably and hunch over a screen to scroll the day away? Take the study down a notch. Scripture says “it is all in vain.” Go jump in the fields. Chase after girls, or boys, whichever the case may be. Watch your movies. Sing. Dance. Play. Do whatever makes you come alive. Yet don’t play too hard, lest you repent at leisure. For many a miserable man wishes he studied just a little harder. Would he were less truant, less jumpy and less dare-devilish. Ah, regret always comes in the end, when the pipe is all smoked out and the candle is all melted.
You may have noticed that your fellow schoolmates walk in boy-girl couples, hand in hand, all smiles and hopelessly in love. In one too many of such cases, a fine kid approached a comely dame and, smiling with his eyes, told her that she’s the hottest thing alive and other similar tremendous trifles. Oh what nonsense is exchanged between the two! Yet it all works out, for henceforth they are ever together, like a man and his wallet. Word goes round that Evelyn is “married” to Albert; that they are perfectly in love; that they fit each other like pieces of a puzzle; that no other couple is more charming, more romantic or sweeter. Baloney! In all my years alive (and they are many), of all freshmen I have seen (their number is legion), of all such couples I’ve met (umpteen), not a single one made it out of campus. Be not fooled by the attention they give each other. Join them if you must: find yourself a partner, but for goodness sake do not kid yourself that you are thoroughly in love. Romance such as yours is made of stuff that dreams are made of; while you are asleep it seems oh-so-real but come wakefulness it is all gone.
And what of drugs? Ah the sweet weed. Oh the blessed booze. How wonderful this highness. Don’t let this day stop. How sweet that music is! How fine that ass is! And boy, it gets finer by the tot. Oh baby when you dance like that you make a man go nuts. Come, lay that body on me and give me the good stuff…Before you realize, it is morning, you’ve not studied for you exams, you’ve smoked away all your money, and you might have gotten someone pregnant, or gotten pregnant yourself. Yet that is but the tip of the iceberg. Your landlord witnessed the fracas last night and has reported you and your henchmen to vice chancellor, who has reported you to the police, seeing that orgies such as yours last night have become a menace to society and the nation at large. Freshmen, be not foolhardy, lest you land yourself in jail, or be chucked out of school into a society that does not care two-pence for drug addicts and college dropouts. That said, an occasional puff has never been known to ruin a man – at least not totally.
You came to school for a reason and, as the worn-out adage goes, for a season. Spend not your time there-in like animals: with little regard for tomorrow. Yet do not live a stingy, miserly life, denying yourself all forms of pleasure. For there is no recovering a lost moment. All we have is here and now.
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