Penn women’s soccer coach Darren Ambrose didn’t have much to say to me when I asked him what changed in the second half of his team’s 8-0 win over NJIT, the first game I ever covered (they only scored three goals in the final 45 minutes).
I guess I didn’t take that — or the terrible “Highlander” reference I used as a lede — as a sign I should stop writing about sports, because here I am after four years, still plugging away.
I learned to say yes — and to not ask stupid questions after a blowout.
I said yes when Megan Soisson pulled me aside after a random writer’s meeting my sophomore year and asked me to run for Sports Editor one year earlier than I wanted to.
Every assignment I could get my hands on got a “yes.” Go on a solo Brown-Yale basketball road trip after a snowstorm? Sure. Squash match at Drexel? Why not?
But maybe the most fulfilling thing about my four years at DPOSTM was hearing “yes,” whether it was from Chris Lubanski when I asked to profile him and his transition from top prospect to LPS student — to this day, my favorite story — or from the other editors in the office when it was my turn to blast the music on Miley Monday, T-Swift Tuesday or Thug Life Thursday.
The DPOSTM office gave me unconditional acceptance, which helped me grow as a writer and a person. It also had the side benefit of providing me with a repository of inside jokes, stories and hashtags that only oh, six or seven people will get.
I’ve pulled off a sort of slow fade over the past semester or so, as my internship at CSN Philly came calling. But I don’t think I’ll ever disappear from the DPOSTM office entirely ... so long as nobody takes down my quotes on the wall.
I can’t say goodbye without saying thank you:
To Riley, Steven, Holden and Colin for laughing at all my jokes (even when I ran them into the ground) and making me look forward to spending seven hours in a windowless office on a nightly basis.
To Cal Silcox, Megan Soisson and Mike Wisniewski for pulling me into the DP in the first place and making sure I stayed on board.
To Mike Tony for helping me come into my own as a writer and being the type of editor I aspired to be.
To John Phillips for teaching me not to take things too seriously.
To every single Penn player I’ve covered for giving me a good quote and a better story.
To the brothers of Sigma Nu for being the best friends I could possibly have asked for and turning the chapter house into a home for me.
To Dick Polman for all the countless lessons inside and outside of the classroom.
And to my family for always being there, no matter what.
I’m not filled with anxiety about graduating — maybe that’s my impending master’s year talking — but I know that after Monday, I’ll be leaving something behind at 4015 Walnut.
Hopefully the walls in the sports office will preserve it.
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.