When I was first starting here at Binghamton University, I remember talking to someone about what clubs I’d like to join. I remember that I said something along the lines of “I want to be involved with Hillel,” “I want to join a sorority” and “I don’t think I want to work on the school paper.”
Now, looking back on the last four years, I did end up joining a sorority, I haven’t been to that many Hillel dinners (sorry mom) and I am so unbelievably deep into this school paper that the thought of leaving makes me feel like an old-timey printing press is sitting on my chest.
Binghamton University was not my first choice. It wasn’t even my second choice or my third. Realistically, I applied to eight schools and it was my eighth choice. It didn’t really offer a program I was interested in (still accurate), there wasn’t a big sports fan environment (would have been nice) and the weather wasn’t supposed to be great (meh, there were some nice days.)
When I compare what I had wanted out of college versus what I got, I find what I had wanted to matter a lot less. Because of Pipe Dream, what I got out of this school was more than I ever could have expected. Even if I wanted to, it’s impossible for me to separate my college experience from working at this paper. For me, there is no Binghamton University without Pipe Dream. It has been my major, my club, my job, my family, my home. How I feel walking into the office is how you feel when you finally crawl into your bed after a long day.
I’ve always heard people say that college is the “Best four years of your life,” to which all I have to say is I hope to GOD that’s not true. Not that this wasn’t great, it definitely was, but there is way too much life left for everything to just be downhill from here.
Pipe Dream, you’ve assured me that college won’t be the peak of my existence. I’m not totally sure where my career will take me, but I know that this experience — being with you all, working together to make something we love — has given me an ideal for my future. If I can love something like I love Pipe Dream, I will know that I am in the right place.
Basically, I’m saying that while this chapter is closing, the idea of Pipe Dream isn’t necessarily over. Earlier this semester, when we painted the written-on walls and re-did the office, I cried because I thought things wouldn’t be the same from then on; that somehow the layer of paint would cover up what made the office special. But I was reassured that it was not the decorations, but rather the people. And months later I found this to be true, which is comforting. It means that while my time at this paper is done, the things that I love about it can stay with me always.
To all of those whom I’ve had the privilege of working alongside with at Pipe Dream, I really can’t thank you enough. You all mean so much to me.
Kelly — You are such a beautiful, incredible, magical, best friend. Warwick and Binghamton are very different places, but having you as a constant presence in both is the best set-up I could have asked for. I really don’t know what college would have been without you. I hope you get to live in a lighthouse, but it has to be 30 seconds away from me, maximum.
Alex — There is nothing I can write here that will do our friendship justice, and it’s hard to imagine how I spent the better part of three years not spending every minute with you. That being said, the friendship we developed has the strength of one 20 times its length. My life is better for having you in it.
Jess — I remember when I first met you. You were handing out cookies and I wasn’t impressed. Four years later, and you never cease to impress me. I can’t wait to see everything you do.
Izzy — Please come visit me and bring Winston with you, that rascal. If crows aren’t actually the next dominant intelligent life form, then I think you might be.
111 Chestnut — Holy cow, thank god we are out of that god-forsaken piece of garbage. I love you all but never again guys. Goodbye broken sink. Goodbye mold. Goodbye asbestos covered in garbage bags. We had a good run but ohmygod. Anyway guys, thanks for being housemates, sorry for not always doing my chores.
Adin — I’ll never forget the pep talk you gave me while we were lying in your bed that one morning last fall. It really changed my self-confidence, and for that, I can’t thank you enough.
Rachel — I’m so constantly inspired by your energy and love for the world. Please always stay just as excited and confident as I know you are.
Kara — YAAAAS YOU ARE COMING BACK THANK GOODNESS. I’m so happy about it.
Sigma Ladies — ALRIGHT LADIES. LISTEN UP. EACH OF YOU IS A BEAUTIFUL, ANGELIC ART PIECE. DO NOT THINK, FOR EVEN A SECOND, THAT YOU ARE NOT WORTHY OF HAPPINESS AND LOVE. If any of you ever need a reminder that you are incredible just the way that you are, please, please, know that you can always reach out to me and I will talk some sense into you. Watch out for each other, stay true to yourselves, stay weird and most of all, stay kind.
Bing Stand Up — I know I didn’t stick with the club, but you guys really helped me make the transition to college. You all gave me a platform to perform, offered me encouragement and helped me find such a fun and rewarding hobby. I wouldn’t be the same person without you guys.
The Pappy Parker Players — I knew I wanted to be in the Pappys before I even got to Binghamton, and even though I was only in the group for a year, It’s been such an amazing one. Thank you so much for welcoming into the family, doing crazy bits with me and just having fun every week. It was such an honor to have done improv with such an amazing group of people. BLARGH! Blork. Bing Bong. Blorf! I will miss you all so much.
Rylan — I am so unbelievably thankful to have become so close with you. I will come visit you next year, and you need to come visit me. To costumes, to Kari, to improv and to KC & The Sunshine Band. Thanks for being someone who can always brighten my day. I’m so lucky to have someone I can be so unbelievably weird with.
Caleb — I AM SO PROUD AND EXCITED FOR YOU MY SON. I’ll miss you a lot but I’ll come visit.
Jeff — This year has been so much fun, and I’m so glad you left that note on my car one day. Thank you for being so caring and kind, and for (usually) watching whatever TV show I pick.
Emma — ILY. TYSM 4 4 GY. LNWTA. E. KK. ttyl. Cui CA.
Shauna — Never change your style, your personality or your distaste for the oxford comma. You might be high-key, but you are also the best-key.
Brendan — MEMES 4 lyfe. Anyway, I really love and appreciate the friendship we’ve developed. I think we have somewhat similar senses of humor and I can’t wait to continue our friendship in the future.
Orla — I’ve seen you grow and change so much since I’ve met you. Please though, never change your work ethic and determination.
Rohit — Sorry for all the times I yelled at you, but I really appreciate how you are so kind and sweet and really try to help everyone, all the time, always. You always try to make everyone happy, and that is so, so beautiful. Please stop drinking Soylent.
Gabby — Gibber geeber goober giber. MCgebee geboo gibby gumby gib. You got this Gebibi.
Georgia — I still remember when you came to the first meeting, and then I saw you at the Sigma event, and the rest is just beautiful history. I am so unbelievably honored to be able to pass this torch to you. I know you’ll do great things with it, and I’m so excited to continuously be amazed by your work ethic and drive. Now that I’m (almost) out of college, I know big and editor and less relevant titles, so I’m so thankful that we will always be friends.
Jess Nudell and Jess Schwartz — You’ve both been such role models to me, and I’m so excited to join you both as actual adults. So much love for you both.
Shannon — I’m so thankful for our lunch dates, our funky photos together and our shared love for mac and cheese. I’m so glad to know that i’ll have a familiar face in Syracuse, and i can’t wait for you to show me the city. You are such a hard worker, a great friend and a thoughtful person. I’m so excited to continue having you in my life.
The Lineage — You guys have given me someone to (hopefully) be a role model for. Thank you for letting me yell my often-mediocre advice in your faces. You all make me so proud.
My Warwick squad — DAMN GUYS WE DID IT. I know it’s crazy because we mostly went to different schools, but you all were as integral to my college experience as anything else in Binghamton. I don’t know what I would do without the comfort of our group chat popping up. The unconditional love and support that I receive from you all is something I know will carry me throughout life. The is just the tip of the iceberg for us all.
Ima, Abba, Yirshalem and Anael — Thank you for listening to my radio shows, reading my articles and always making an effort to be involved with what I was doing 2 1/2 hours away. Also thank you for pushing me to go to a state school, and for encouraging me to continue to grad school. None of this would be possible without you guys.
Odeya Pinkus is a senior majoring in English