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There are a lot of really amazing people in the world. There really are. A lot of the time I think that I forget that fact. Maybe you do, too. Sometimes these people are hard to see, hard to find. Most of the people I interact with on a daily basis seem simply ordinary. So many of them – ordinary folk. That’s fine, being ordinary, if that’s what you’re in to. I’m just, well, not. Why live a simple life? Why not do amazing things, see amazing things, be amazing?

I’ve recently started my senior year of Undergraduate school. So recently, in fact, that today is my second day of classes. Fall semester, 2012. Back to school!

I love college. I wasn’t so hot on High School. It is just so different, so restricted. So scheduled. Perhaps: so ordinary. Now, though, I’m a college student, and I love it. Walking from the parking lot to my classroom on the first day back, I found myself grinning. I love this place. I love these people. These people who are striving to be more than ordinary. Who would struggle through college classes in order to better themselves and their lives. Who would pay thousands of dollars just for the chance to become a higher-educated human being.

Students are more than simply students, though. They are minds. They are amazing. They have something to say, something to give. They are people who are excited about their lives and the future. They have dreams, plans, ideas, goals.

This fact, too, can be easy to forget. Another college student is just another college student. My campus is relatively small, yet thousands of students attend classes here. Thousands of creative, interested, willing, capable minds. We come to learn from professors and end up learning from each other, too. We learn math, yes, and science, yes, and French, and how to write in MLA format, and not to text in class, and that our professors really like when we participate, and that the bathroom on the second floor of the English building is always empty, and we learn not to get to class too early, and that staircases really are the better choice, and that not holding a door for someone when they are really far away is OK. We also learn about the people in our communities. We learn about their lives. We see how similar they are to us. We feel togetherness. We feel not-so-ordinary.

Today I was reading through some early submissions that were received by the creative writing magazine I work for at my school. There were only five – I’m sure there are many more to come. I love reading the poems and stories that come from fellow students. I read them anonymously – I have no idea who wrote these pieces – male, female; student, staff, teacher; old, young; black, white. And so, I am amazed. The submissions were good. All poems. All different. Not so ordinary.

The poems were all about different things – crumbling cities, religion, the media, girls, dirt. The poems were good, but it was the realization that I came to from reading them that made me stop, actually teary-eyed, and think. Think that there are a lot of amazing people in this world. That they are hard to see, sometimes. That we forget about them, that they exist. That they are living with us, mixed in with all the ordinary people. We are all living our lives together.

I work for the creative writing magazine at my University. I’m the “Prose Editor”. I handle the fiction and non-fiction submissions. AKA, anything that’s not poetry.

I love my job. (I call it a job… it’s more of a paid volunteer.) It’s great. I love writing, I love reading, I love working with the authors and editing their pieces to make them the best that they can be; to help create the end product that the writers originally imagined.

About a year ago, I discovered there was such a thing as a creative writing magazine. Who knew? I think I found out about them from my creative writing professor, who handed me a long compiled list of mags that accepted student work. When I found out, I thought I had stumbled onto something big.

That’s it! I’m sure I shouted in my head. That’s what I’ll do. I’ll work for a creative writing magazine/journal once I graduate from college. Sounds good to me!

Little did I know, nor could I ever imagine, that about four months later… I would be working at a creative writing magazine – at my college, no less!

Like I said, it’s a great job. I get to do all that cool stuff I already mentioned, as well as hang out with the staff (who are a group of amazingly cool people themselves), go to poetry readings, have magazine launch parties (in which we eat cheese, drink wine, and wear fancy clothing)… basically, I have the opportunity to do what I love with people I love in the town I love.

I hope I can be so lucky once I graduate and get a “real” job. I mean, honestly, I don’t know what I’m going to do. I keep asking people, “What am I going to do the day after graduation? … What are you gonna do?” (And with my literary magazine idea already completed, well, I’ve got nothing.)

College students, generally, are pretty cool. They tend to be intelligent, open minded, fun, interesting, etc. Well, the ones I hang out with, anyway. People getting a higher education are just interesting people to know; they’re either involved in some cool project, or they’re helping out in the local community, or they’re working in or at the University itself, making it a better place in one way or another.

Universities and colleges are where the smart people hang out. Where the kids with bright futures live. (Oh, and I go there, too. …) So, when I ask my, “What are you going to do after you graduate” question, I always expect something other than what I tend to hear: “Oh, I’m going to be a teacher” or, “Oh, I guess I’ll be a professor.”

Uh, excuse me, what?

I think this has happened with the last 6/10 students I’ve spoken to. The rest of them, the 4/10, either have a different career in mind, or, more commonly, still have no idea.

I can’t believe it, though! A teacher? You want to teach? You’ve just spent the first 25 years of your life in school, and now you want to teach? What?

I don’t want to teach. I know that much for sure. (Crossing possible careers choices off of my ‘list’ is better than nothing, right?) No way! Maybe I’m just too selfish to be a teacher. Or, maybe I dream too big. The way I see it, you’ve only got one life. You’re gonna die. (Hate to break it to you like this.) Why waste it doing something you don’t love? Why not try, why not risk it (whatever “it” is) and go for your dream job? Why be a teacher?

Ok, Ok, I understand that some people really do want to teach. Like, they’re passionate about it, and it’s how they want to spend their life. And that’s great! Good for them. But I’m not talking about those particular people. I’m talking about the really fucking awesome people in this world that become teachers/professors because they just don’t know what else to do, or they’re too scared to do it, or (this is probably the most correct option) they’re too smart to do it.

“What I really want is a good paying job.” This is what I hear a lot. People just want to do something that will make them money. A good, steady, income. Be reasonable: get a reasonable degree, get a reasonable job, live a reasonable life.

I’m sorry, but that’s just not good enough for me! I don’t care about money. Really, I don’t. But, at the same time, money is a necessity. Money buys shelter and Charles Bukowski poetry books. It’s just not that important to me. A successful life and job is doing what I love. For me, that’s not teaching. That’s not a lot of things. I don’t know exactly what it is yet. I love so many things, maybe that’s why I can’t settle on one job. Maybe I need to find or create a job that lets me do lots of really cool, interesting things.

I don’t know! I’ll admit it: I don’t know. Not a clue. And it is so scary, not knowing. You’re expected to know. “What are you majoring in?” “What are you going to be when you grow up?” “What are you going to do the day after graduation?”

Can I respond with: “Who Cares!”? That’s what I want to say, sometimes. I’ll figure it out. I’m just going to live my life and see where it leads. I want to do so many different things. I don’t want a “regular” job.

I don’t know!