A friend of mine from college recently finished his first manuscript. I’m really excited about this because, although I’ve met many amazing people online who are in the same stage as me, it’s nice having a real-life friend there. Plus, having known him for around 11 years, I’m extremely proud and excited for him. It’s much more personal.
So as I wait for his manuscript to arrive, I’ve decided to re-read The Perks of Being a Wallflower for the 8th (or so?) time.
I just finished part one, with Charlie meeting Patrick and Sam and instantly diving into this new world of music, and light, and infinities. And it reminds me very much of my first year of college.
I moved up to Tallahassee knowing a few other people on campus, including my roommate. We were in high school drama together, and managed to room together, too. But she had a boyfriend, and spent most of her time with him. And my other friend there had his girlfriend, and was spending most of his time with her. And I was happy for them, but I was still there, in my dorm, trying to figure things out on my own.
It was one of those dorms that was a block off campus and had two wings (the north and south side) and a cafeteria in the middle. I lived on the third floor of the south side. While getting lunch, I met a girl and we instantly bonded over being new and excited and wanting to do so much. So after a few lunches together, we went to a movie at our on-campus theatre, and then she introduced me to some of her friends, people from her floor and the floor below. They were a ragtag group of people so similar to me. They were filmmakers and writers and ninjas and dreamers. And when I sat with them at lunch or dinner, they didn’t ignore me, or question why I was there – they integrated me into the conversation as if I’d always been a part of their group. As if I lived on their floor, too.
On Halloween, they took me to a party, and they day after they took me out for my birthday. And after that, I never looked back. I practically lived on their floor (three north), oftentimes crashing on one of their floors just because we all didn’t want to part when night drew near. Even though I lived just on the other side of the building. We were in our own little world that felt safe and secure and completely belonging to us. We had jokes and games. We felt part of something when seeing one another on campus. We, yes, felt infinite.
So I know how Charlie feels once he’s integrated into Patrick and Sam’s group. I know because I’ve been there, too. And one of the guys I met in my group? He’s the one sending me the manuscript.