As I was preparing to write this column, getting the right font and indentation and all that, the enormity of the task before me hit me with full force. Writing a column for a school publication doesn’t sound like much, I know, but in this case — in this specific instance — it is. This is my last column. This is the last thing I will ever write for the Daily Nexus — the culmination of my work. As one more thing that has been a huge part of my life for the past four years comes to its inevitable end, I can’t help but reflect on the moments that led up to me writing these words.

What I really want to do is thank you. I have enjoyed few things more over the past four years than writing for the Nexus, and you, my beloved readers, deserve all the credit for that. Sure, the money is nice and I do like to talk about sports, but knowing that there are people out there who actually enjoy the incoherent babble I put out every week is what makes what I do fun and worth the effort. You have made me more confident in my writing by giving me a platform and a chance to find my voice. You have forced me to become more creative as each week I had to come up with new topics and new jokes to make my columns both fun and interesting, and for that, I thank you.

It saddens me to say that I have little to give in return for that great gift. The best I can do is to leave you with one final piece of advice. When I first started at UCSB, I, like most people, was scared out of my mind. I was lonely. I didn’t know anyone and I had never really been away from home before. But the school took care of me. There are so many extracurricular activities available here that you would literally have to try to not meet people. The best two decisions I have made in my life were when I decided to join the school’s Polynesian dance club and when I decided to attend the Nexus training session in the fall of my first year. I had never danced a step in my life, nor had I written a word outside of school papers in high school, yet four years later those are two of the most important parts of my life — I have met almost all of my friends, who are like a second family to me now, through the Nexus or through dance. Because of that these have been, without a doubt, the best four years of my life so far.

What I’m trying to say is, simply, try things. Join a club, play a sport, write an article. It doesn’t matter what you do; just do something, even if it’s something you’ve never even thought of trying before. There is quite literally something for everyone here. All you have to do is look. I promise you won’t regret it. With that I must begin the process of ending my time with the Nexus. I know that once I put my last words down on this page, there is no going back. That will be the end. I will miss it, and you, of course, but more importantly I will remember. I will remember fondly all the things I learned while working for the Nexus, writing for you, attending this school and living in beautiful Isla Vista. I will remember all of the people and events that have affected my life over the past four years and while not every moment was pleasant, I would not change any of it. Who knows how things would have turned out if I had done this thing or that thing differently, but I do know that it would not be as it is now, and that alone is enough to tell me that I must have done something right. So I will remember, and I will take those memories with me as I move on. Though this part of my life is over, I know that something new and potentially fantastic is about to begin. And even if the next chapter is not quite as good as its predecessor, how can I complain if I still have the memories of my time here? So don’t be sad when I’m gone. I won’t be. I will be able to look back and smile and you should, too. Nothing really ends as long as we remember it. With that, to quote the great Randy Newman, “Instead of just goodbye, I’ll say so long.”