I’ll let Jaffe give the sage advice, and Katrina can be endearing about stuff and whatnot.
I’m generally bad at both those things. And really I can’t un-sentimentalize this past year enough (WORST EVAR). But Dan insists on getting a love letter, so this is sort of obligatory.
Among my many negative qualities I am also a terrible griever, and I can never fathom the import of loss until well after the fact. It just doesn’t compute well with me. I don’t know what I’ll miss.
I can’t understand what it will feel like to not have Dan petting his stupid-looking Brillo-pad beard to my right, to not hear Jaffe complaining about shoes and her voracity for more of them or to not have to assume Charlie is at his desk behind me but not being sure because he is silently in Charlieland.
But I don’t take everything for granted. It is precious and rare to have people who appreciate the brand of weird we newspaper kids deal in.
Woe betide the fool who is not as quick or as witty as we are (albeit to hide our own self-loathing and daddy issues). Woe betide the poor man who has chanced upon a tantrum thrown by Princess Selene.
We are a home built of inside jokes and mixed metaphors. I’ll be sad to leave this little haven of weirdness I’ve made here at Allegheny. If it were a plantation estate, I’d maybe call it Summer Ambrosia.
Kookiness aside, there is also some sincere lovin’ that goes on here in little ways I’m not sure even everyone on staff realizes. When Jaffe’s white-girling-out, I can tell her to relax. When I need a soda, or to literally cry for 40 minutes straight while at work, Dan and Jaffe can stand in front of the counter awkwardly wanting to help—which is about all the help one can give. When Molly is frantic, we can assure her life will again return to peaches.
I notice that people’s bad moods get put aside when someone else on staff is in a worse mood. That attitude is what helps us put out issues each week, but it’s also what helped me through the weirdest, hardest semester and year of my time at Allegheny. I don’t know if you news lewsers knew just how peachy you made time for me at its unpeachiest.
So when the History Channel does a disc retrieval on our newsroom computers in their research for the lost GDANDHIs, I hope they find our Photoshopped prototype for Finger Jeans and the posters for “Divine Intervention” and “Ducky Love.” It’s all we’ve got to say we had, like, friends or something.
I’d like to write more about what I’ll miss when I’m in the world of working chumps, but Jaffe has commissioned me to write a play for her that she, Dan and I can reenact with Southern accents.
“It was the summer of honeysuckle, and a deep heat made even the tabby cats languorous…”
Brittany Baker will pursue her Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction at Sarah Lawrence College.