Letter From the Editor, May 2018
Updated: Sep 3, 2021
I’ll admit it–when Professor Erik Gray brought up Lionel Trilling in this month’s Conversation interview (pg. 20), I had absolutely no idea who he was talking about. A couple of Google searches later and I find out he was one of the most prominent literary critics and professors that Columbia and New York City has ever seen. And I, an English major in Trilling’s former department, had zero clue who he was.
Am I embarrassed by this admission? Maybe a little, but on further reflection… not at all. It’s perfectly okay to admit that you don’t know about something that hot shots in your seminars assume or expect you to know. Nobody likes a pseudointellectual, so be honest and unapologetic about what you don’t know during your time here. But then be unrelenting in your pursuit to fill in those gaps.
I am anxiously realizing that the 2018 tents and bleachers are up on the lawns. The class that welcomed me to campus graduates in two weeks. Amidst the crush of exams, I can’t help but imagine what it will be like to walk across that stage myself next year. After reading Saif and Alex’s reflections on whether this was all worth it (pg. 10), I know I need at least another year here to justify the tuition. I have approximately 1,999,988 more Butler books to read, and I haven’t been to nearly enough 1020 trivia nights, or meals at Taqueria, or church with friends, or walks in Riverside. If I had to write a Bwog Senior Wisdom tomorrow, the most valuable thing I have learned in three years is that you will regret the nights you flaked on plans and stayed in your room alone. You probably didn’t get any work done anyways—I never did. Thank goodness I still have a year of memories left to make.