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May 2008. I was so pissed off.

I wanted the hell out of Sherman, but I did not wish to graduate. I knew this would be the last time I would have the full college experience. With all of these people.

· Young, old, nice, mean, human ·

As I walked down the pathway, lined up in caps and gowns, I found it annoying to see professors and attendees applauding. I knew they were doing it because it was on the damn program. We have to celebrate! the fact that most of these kids ·stumbled· their way to a degree.

But—out of the corner of my eye—I spotted one of the few individuals who truly affected my experience. My time in college. My presence in the real world. Looked like Santa half the time, but taught like Vonnegut. This was truly a hell of a person, and a genuine human being. He always expressed his thoughts, and he encouraged the relentless pushing of envelopes. Hell, he was the one who strongly encouraged me to make a feature-length movie.

I feel you should just do it, Drew. What better way to get off your ass and do something? He joked, of course, while still being serious. He never said the word


—not to me, at least. It was always about improbability with him, never impossibility.

I saw him, and he sure as hell saw me. Yes, he was applauding. No, it did not offend me. I felt like he was staring me down, as he would do to all of the students with whom he got along personally. It was his way of screwing with you, and I loved it. I walked past him and he held out his hand, forcing rather easily into mine.

Congratulations, Drew, and good luck.

I fucking teared up right then. That was the only time I did that day.

Without him, I would not be the person I am today. I am going to miss him for the rest of my life. Damn. «»