Senior year, adult-style. (Also known as year 4 in DC.)

I'd like to start this annual time marker with a long-overdue pronouncement:

They are in frames, with mattes, on the wall, in artful arrangements, and -- most important -- no longer on my floor. It only took four years (head::desk). And not a moment too soon, because I am hitting a senior slide to end all slides.

I know I'm not actually in school. But my time here thus far has schooled me to such a degree (see what I did there? School? Degree? Good, right?) that I feel I deserve a diploma. Or at least a celebratory bottle glass of Chianti. Let's look back ...

  • Year 1 was all, "I'm so grown up! What freedom! What responsibility! Oh wait ..."
  • Year 2 was like, "In the groove, cruising along, thinking about the big next step ..."
  • Year 3 went, "Curve ball! Shit got real, gotta deal ... no really. Deal."

Which brings us to year 4. 'Senior' year. The year where I went on road trips with my friends, worried in my spare time, and looked at the big decisions looming ahead of me through my peripheral vision to make them appear less imminent.

Except this time around I'm older and wiser. I know that peripheral vision doesn't deliver the full picture. I also know I'm made of tough enough stuff that I can look the oncoming year straight in the eye and say, "I have scant idea what you're bringing, but bring it anyway." And I know that I'll mean it.

So thanks, DC, for another year of making me walk the talk. In the coming months give me roommate adventures and improv classes and tennis II lessons and a heavy library bag and video chats with Fella and weekends for writing and gorgeous weather for the 100th anniversary of the Cherry Blossoms. Because you know how I feel about anniversaries. And you know how I feel about you.

In honor of hanging my pictures this year, I present myself as ... a hanging picture.