Message in a Mailbox


Recently, my old college offered alumni the chance to send a letter to the current owners of our old student union mailbox numbers. Somehow, I got old enough to think this was a good idea. 

Here’s what I told the current owner of my old mailbox:

Hello and welcome to what I hope will be a fantastic school year! I’m one of the resident ghosts of your mailbox. Actually, my mailbox was in Baxter in the late 1980s, before Baxter was torn down to build Paresky. So it’s more accurate to say that I’m a ghost from the ghost of your SU box.


Then and now…
(Student unions have gotten a lot swanker.)

I have no deep advice for the coming year or your college career. If you’re anything like me, you wouldn’t listen anyway. What I can share is that all the time I spent making thoughtful academic choices and Planning for the Future turned out to have nothing to do with my life after college. I also spent a lot of time singing, watching TV, and playing Dungeons & Dragons — and as it happens, I’ve spent most of the time since as a video game designer and media critic. The Chaucer lessons are occasionally handy, but I use what I picked up from D&D and Star Trek every day.

So if I have a moral — and I probably don’t — it’s to not take the coming year too seriously. Try things you might like, do more of the things you enjoy. Do some stupid things that you’ll probably regret, then survive and learn from them. And if anyone tells you you’re wasting time / your gifts / your future… tell them to shove off. They don’t know which experiences you’ll value in the future any more than I did.

Best wishes and have a great year,

Chris Aylott ’91

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