I know what I didn’t do last summer

Adam Griffiths

Last Skyline visit.

Last time visiting my friend at work.

Last trip to Hollywood Video.

Last milk and cigarettes run for my mother.

Last family dinner.

Last nap at home.

Last cuddle with my sister on the couch.

Last ride home with J.J.

That’s everything I did Aug. 20, 2006, my last day at home before I began my first semester at Kent State. And this is the clich‚ column about my first summer at home after a year at college.

This summer, Facebook and I became better friends. I worked. I went out infrequently. I drank a lot of coffee. Pretty lackluster experiences.

But what didn’t I know last summer that I do now?

I learned I don’t have a bed anymore. When I moved out, my siblings moved up the square-foot ladder to the bigger rooms in the house. I managed survival in a Barbie-pink room smaller than the space I lived in at Johnson Hall.

I learned I missed Skyline more than most of my friends – it really is a Cincinnati thing. And I know Blockbuster Online is a much better deal than Hollywood Video or Netflix, hands down.

I learned that more and more, I’m losing the feeling of home. I refer to Kent as “home” now. I don’t live in the house where I’m writing this column – I just stayed here three months while the residence halls were closed.

I learned family is family, and they always will be. Everyone in it grows old, but nothing really changes.

I learned boys will be boys. I went from having an entirely sexual relationship to rushing into a relationship with a guy at college, to sleeping around to realizing that’s dangerous and unsafe, to a happy medium.

Maybe it’s bitter, but I learned not to hold my breath.

Friends come and go. You’d better like who sticks around because you count on them whether you want to or not.

And I learned high school is over, but it never ends.

That’s what’s complicated about growing up – the simultaneousness of the experiences and emotions. When we’re children, we have the luxury of taking one thing at a time as limited by the capacity of our minds; but when we start growing into adults, life is perpetual, and we’re finally forced to see that.

Then there’s this culture and society forcing youth back down our throats as the only acceptable front. And there’s this moment when you realize it’s simply enough to exist, to live for the sake of living.

So what did I do this summer? I’ll get back to you a year from now and let you really have it.

Last column of Summer 2007.

See you in two weeks.

Adam Griffiths is a sophomore magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Summer Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].