When I attended university I lived on campus in residence for 1 term in my second year. I had such a great time that my grades torpedoed to lows I hadn’t ever seen before. I was having such a jolly old time that I didn’t even care! Ha ha.

Our quad was the East Quad, and I lived on the second of 3 floors. One of the women I lived with had t-shirts made up that said Peace in the Middle East. There was quite a bit of turmoil in the actual middle eastern part of the world at the time, so these shirts were a way to lighten the mood. I was so serious about world issues then; I had a lot of time on my hands to care about this sort of thing.

Navel-gazing is a popular pursuit in high school and university. I think this activity is a necessary part of growing up. We go from thinking we are the centre of the universe, to thinking our place might not be the centre but our voices and opinions are highly important. Eventually we experience the huge shift to adulthood and our voices get a little softer because we now realize everyone around us has dealt with varying degrees of ‘serious shit,’ same as we have, on their way to this phase of life. We find out we don’t know everything, and we experience a small inkling of hmmmm, experience is a great teacher. Our lines become softer, our blacks become grays and the whites are a nice shade of ecru. There are now exceptions we are willing to make, understanding we are willing to give others that we never thought we would have given. There’s not much anyone can do to speed up this process for others.