Okay friends… A book has been your number one request. Well, that’s what I aim to give you. Have a look at the Kickstarter page and please watch the video (seriously, the video has turned my hair grey… I need you to watch it.) 

Please do tag anyone in the comments that you feel would be interested in supporting this endeavor. Tagging may actually work better than ‘sharing’… I don’t know, do whatever you feel is better.

If the campaign achieves its goal then I hope to have the finished book and the rewards in-hand by the middle or end of November, just in time for Christmas. The first books will be distributed to those that attend the kickoff event. I’ll then do a little tour to make sure everyone has an opportunity to pick up their book and get it signed. After that I’ll mail out the remainder of the pre-orders.

Anyway, many, many thanks for the support you’ve shown me so far. I really hope that there is enough interest in a book of the blog to make this a reality but if the campaign does NOT meet its goal, you’ll never be charged a dime, so you’re safe either way.

His handshake was strong but friendly. I’d driven a couple of hours to meet him, and his welcoming demeanor made every minute of the trip worth it. He invited me into his home and we sat and talked for quite a while."I was drafted in November, 1966. At that time we were the 25th Infantry Division but by the time I got there the 3rd brigade had been switched to the 4th Infantry Division.""How old were you when you went to Vietnam? What did you do in the war?”"I was twenty when I went in, and turned twenty-two in Vietnam; that was in 1968. I was the RTO with Forward Observer. We traveled with the Infantry and called in the Artillery. I ran fire missions on the FADAC."The look on my face told him that I had no clue what he was saying and he grinned."RTO is a ‘Radio Telephone Operator, and FADAC stands for ‘Field Artillery Digital Analog computer.’ It’s a targeting system for artillery.""Where did that put you in the war?""My B battery was never at the rear. We were Forward Fire Support for landing zones the whole time."We talked about names and places. He rattled off towns and cities, recounting battles that we’d won, and some that we hadn’t. He was proud of his division; The 2/9th FA (“The Mighty Ninth”) was the first artillery unit of the 25th Infantry Division to fire an artillery round after arriving in Vietnam.We also talked about life after the war:"I’ve kept up with some of the men from my unit. Others I’ve seen again at reunions or memorials. Skype is just about the handiest tool out there. I’ve got three men that I keep in pretty regular contact with and it’s helping us finish some business.""Business?""You know, getting our medals sorted out and such. I’ve got an AGCM and a Purple Heart coming. The ACGM is the Army Good Conduct Medal; I was a good soldier. I kept my nose clean and did my duty. I figure I earned it.""And the Purple Heart?""Oh, I was running fire missions on the FADAC. Things got hot pretty quick and we hadn’t really had time to sand bag before we started to receive incoming mortars. Well, after they stopped, the First Sargent came in to check on things and asked me why I had blood all over my back. Things had happened kind of quick… I didn’t really have time to notice."Well, the Sargent, he had Doc come check me out and come to find I had been hit with some shrapnel; it was only minor. It could’a been a lot worse. "There was one other guy on gun number three that took some shrapnel that day also. Anyway, we’re hoping to go ahead and get those medals.""I almost don’t know how to ask this, but how do you feel the war changed your life?"His eyes met mine and he grinned a bit."Rustin, I have five kids, seventeen happy grand kids, and two beautiful great grand-babies, with another due any time now, maybe even on my birthday… Whatever happened back then, and whatever come out of it, well, I’ve had a good life. "I’m more blessed than any man I know."

His handshake was strong but friendly. I’d driven a couple of hours to meet him, and his welcoming demeanor made every minute of the trip worth it. He invited me into his home and we sat and talked for quite a while.

"I was drafted in November, 1966. At that time we were the 25th Infantry Division but by the time I got there the 3rd brigade had been switched to the 4th Infantry Division."

"How old were you when you went to Vietnam? What did you do in the war?”

"I was twenty when I went in, and turned twenty-two in Vietnam; that was in 1968. I was the RTO with Forward Observer. We traveled with the Infantry and called in the Artillery. I ran fire missions on the FADAC."

The look on my face told him that I had no clue what he was saying and he grinned.

"RTO is a ‘Radio Telephone Operator, and FADAC stands for ‘Field Artillery Digital Analog computer.’ It’s a targeting system for artillery."

"Where did that put you in the war?"

"My B battery was never at the rear. We were Forward Fire Support for landing zones the whole time."

We talked about names and places. He rattled off towns and cities, recounting battles that we’d won, and some that we hadn’t. He was proud of his division; The 2/9th FA (“The Mighty Ninth”) was the first artillery unit of the 25th Infantry Division to fire an artillery round after arriving in Vietnam.

We also talked about life after the war:

"I’ve kept up with some of the men from my unit. Others I’ve seen again at reunions or memorials. Skype is just about the handiest tool out there. I’ve got three men that I keep in pretty regular contact with and it’s helping us finish some business."

"Business?"

"You know, getting our medals sorted out and such. I’ve got an AGCM and a Purple Heart coming. The ACGM is the Army Good Conduct Medal; I was a good soldier. I kept my nose clean and did my duty. I figure I earned it."

"And the Purple Heart?"

"Oh, I was running fire missions on the FADAC. Things got hot pretty quick and we hadn’t really had time to sand bag before we started to receive incoming mortars. Well, after they stopped, the First Sargent came in to check on things and asked me why I had blood all over my back. Things had happened kind of quick… I didn’t really have time to notice.

"Well, the Sargent, he had Doc come check me out and come to find I had been hit with some shrapnel; it was only minor. It could’a been a lot worse. 

"There was one other guy on gun number three that took some shrapnel that day also. Anyway, we’re hoping to go ahead and get those medals."

"I almost don’t know how to ask this, but how do you feel the war changed your life?"

His eyes met mine and he grinned a bit.

"Rustin, I have five kids, seventeen happy grand kids, and two beautiful great grand-babies, with another due any time now, maybe even on my birthday… Whatever happened back then, and whatever come out of it, well, I’ve had a good life. 

"I’m more blessed than any man I know."

"I think I always worry about the future. Sometimes I try to envision my life in ten years and imagine the life I will lead, and it stresses me out."I find myself constantly reminding me to stop thinking about the future at the most random times. I am only a freshman in high school and I feel like I over think this more than most… "I guess the biggest challenge I have right now is to learn to focus on what’s right in front of me."…and then she flashed me a grin.

"I think I always worry about the future. Sometimes I try to envision my life in ten years and imagine the life I will lead, and it stresses me out.

"I find myself constantly reminding me to stop thinking about the future at the most random times. I am only a freshman in high school and I feel like I over think this more than most… 

"I guess the biggest challenge I have right now is to learn to focus on what’s right in front of me."

…and then she flashed me a grin.

originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.”"I grew up in a diverse neighborhood and race really didn’t come into play much. We’d go to the park and play with whatever kids were there. Our school was racially diverse, it just wasn’t an issue for us."I mean, we recognized different races, but it simply wasn’t an issue within my circle of family and friends. We were kind of oblivious to what was going on in the country around us because our family protected us from all that."I was about ten in the Summer of ‘68 when of course things changed. There was about a two week period when things were tense. We actually had the National Guard walking us to school for a little while, but we got through it.""So, what’s changed from them to now?""Oh, we still have a ways to go, but there’s been real progress made since then.""For example…" "For example, my parents would never have been able to go to college. It just wasn’t one of their expectations. My daughter, however, has already graduated from prestigious Marquette University and is working toward her Master’s degree. She’ll get it - it’s a realistic expectation now.""Do you still feel racial tensions?"Her smile grew."There’s always been times of strife, but you look to your family for support and you just go on.”

originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.”

"I grew up in a diverse neighborhood and race really didn’t come into play much. We’d go to the park and play with whatever kids were there. Our school was racially diverse, it just wasn’t an issue for us.

"I mean, we recognized different races, but it simply wasn’t an issue within my circle of family and friends. We were kind of oblivious to what was going on in the country around us because our family protected us from all that.

"I was about ten in the Summer of ‘68 when of course things changed. There was about a two week period when things were tense. We actually had the National Guard walking us to school for a little while, but we got through it."

"So, what’s changed from them to now?"

"Oh, we still have a ways to go, but there’s been real progress made since then."

"For example…" 

"For example, my parents would never have been able to go to college. It just wasn’t one of their expectations. My daughter, however, has already graduated from prestigious Marquette University and is working toward her Master’s degree. She’ll get it - it’s a realistic expectation now."

"Do you still feel racial tensions?"

Her smile grew.

"There’s always been times of strife, but you look to your family for support and you just go on.”

"I met my husband when I was going to school in Wisconsin. He’s originally from there, and I’m from Oklahoma."One of the things that I missed about home were the seasons. It’s kind of hard to tell sometimes, but most years Oklahoma has all four."She laughed a little."What’s your favorite season in Oklahoma?"She didn’t even hesitate."Fall. Without a doubt. I think because fall has a lot of variation; I like the warm days that swirl into cool nights. All the colors; the juxtaposition of reds and browns highlighted against the blue sky.""So, how did you guys end up back here?""Well, I brought him for a visit in the spring, when it was seventy and sunny with just a hint of a breeze, and he was hooked. That was about fifteen years ago. I’m really glad, too; it was hard for me to be away for very long.""I get that a lot. What was your biggest draw? What called to you the most?""When I was away from my home I really missed the Oklahoma wind. I just love the feel of it, even in the summer when it can be like a blast furnace. I love the sound of it; whether it’s whispering or roaring in my ears… Especially through the cottonwood leaves. I missed the openness. Not just of the landscape, but of the people…"Oklahoma has an openness and warmth that is reflected in almost everyone I meet."

"I met my husband when I was going to school in Wisconsin. He’s originally from there, and I’m from Oklahoma.

"One of the things that I missed about home were the seasons. It’s kind of hard to tell sometimes, but most years Oklahoma has all four."

She laughed a little.

"What’s your favorite season in Oklahoma?"

She didn’t even hesitate.

"Fall. Without a doubt. I think because fall has a lot of variation; I like the warm days that swirl into cool nights. All the colors; the juxtaposition of reds and browns highlighted against the blue sky."

"So, how did you guys end up back here?"

"Well, I brought him for a visit in the spring, when it was seventy and sunny with just a hint of a breeze, and he was hooked. That was about fifteen years ago. I’m really glad, too; it was hard for me to be away for very long."

"I get that a lot. What was your biggest draw? What called to you the most?"

"When I was away from my home I really missed the Oklahoma wind. I just love the feel of it, even in the summer when it can be like a blast furnace. I love the sound of it; whether it’s whispering or roaring in my ears… Especially through the cottonwood leaves. I missed the openness. Not just of the landscape, but of the people…

"Oklahoma has an openness and warmth that is reflected in almost everyone I meet."

"What’s something that you never thought you’d hear yourself say?"He smiled."You don’t HAVE to join the Army."I looked at his Army cap."Can you elaborate on that?"He gathered his thoughts a bit."What I mean is that the Army isn’t for everyone. Never has been. We all have this picture of what Army life will be from movies and TV, but everyone’s picture is different."Not everyone goes out for football or basketball, because they know it won’t be a good fit. If you know that being on a team could is absolutely not the right thing for you, then maybe not trying out is the better thing to do."There are lots of other ways to support your country other than the armed forces. The Army is a great direction for a lot of folks, I’m just pointing out that it’s not the only direction…"

"What’s something that you never thought you’d hear yourself say?"

He smiled.

"You don’t HAVE to join the Army."

I looked at his Army cap.

"Can you elaborate on that?"

He gathered his thoughts a bit.

"What I mean is that the Army isn’t for everyone. Never has been. We all have this picture of what Army life will be from movies and TV, but everyone’s picture is different.

"Not everyone goes out for football or basketball, because they know it won’t be a good fit. If you know that being on a team could is absolutely not the right thing for you, then maybe not trying out is the better thing to do.

"There are lots of other ways to support your country other than the armed forces. The Army is a great direction for a lot of folks, I’m just pointing out that it’s not the only direction…"

I was at the last Energy FC pre-season game when I saw them kicking a ball around. "Hey guys, which team are you root… Oh my gosh! That’s BRILLIANT!!"The young woman with them laughed and identified herself as one of their mothers. "I have a friend that does hair so when we were getting hair cuts I asked him if he could do it. He said he’d give it a try, glanced for a minute at a picture that we gave him, and this was the result!""Look!" Said the boy in green as he turned his head to the right to reveal a flaming soccer ball on the other side. I can’t wait to see what happens when we graduate to MLS… And yeah, the Energy won the match, 5-1. Bam.

I was at the last Energy FC pre-season game when I saw them kicking a ball around. 

"Hey guys, which team are you root… Oh my gosh! That’s BRILLIANT!!"

The young woman with them laughed and identified herself as one of their mothers. 

"I have a friend that does hair so when we were getting hair cuts I asked him if he could do it. He said he’d give it a try, glanced for a minute at a picture that we gave him, and this was the result!"

"Look!" Said the boy in green as he turned his head to the right to reveal a flaming soccer ball on the other side. 

I can’t wait to see what happens when we graduate to MLS… 

And yeah, the Energy won the match, 5-1. Bam.

The tiny dog ran around my feet, glancing up and growling at me a couple of times for being the wrong person."Taco won’t hurt you. He’s just lookin’ for Mama."Come to find out, Taco is a certified Medical Alert Dog. See that little blue tag?"It means that he gets to go in with me, wherever I go. I haven’t really had any problems. Folks are used to seein’ bigger assistance dogs, so Taco takes a little getting used to, but it don’t take long.""I was in Vietnam all of ‘68 and ‘69. Heck, we didn’t worry about the stuff gettin’ sprayed in the air. We had other worries. By the time my doctor sent me to the VA to get checked out several years ago, the damage had already been done. "When they ran some tests they knew what had happened. Heck, one asked me if I’d been drinking Agent Orange, overseas!"He laughed and then his seriousness returned and gave me a little more information on his companion. Apart from being a friendly face during a PTSD episode, Taco has another, equally valuable function."I’ve got diabetes real bad. That little cuss actually knows when my blood sugar is crashing and he’ll wake me up! Any time he starts lickin’ my arm and whimpering, I know to do a blood test."Taco is one of a kind, almost literally. You see, Taco was already the family dog, BEFORE he was a Medical Alert Dog. The man put up his fingers to give me perspective."He’as only about three inches long when he’as born. He’s actually my daughter’s dog… She says I kidnapped him!"He laughed again and the tiny assistant shifted his gaze from the door to the man, and then back to the door."I told my doctor that Taco’d been wakin’ me up and that three different times it happened right as my insulin was dropping and he put me in touch with someone who put me in touch with someone else… Pretty soon, they had me answering a bunch’a questions and then they asked me for Taco’s picture."He flipped over the white I.D. tag on the dog’s collar. Yep, it was Taco. About ten seconds later, Taco became fidgety…"Mama’s close. He can always tell."When the woman appeared at the end of the aisle, Taco ran in three quick circles and zipped over to her.

The tiny dog ran around my feet, glancing up and growling at me a couple of times for being the wrong person.

"Taco won’t hurt you. He’s just lookin’ for Mama."

Come to find out, Taco is a certified Medical Alert Dog. See that little blue tag?

"It means that he gets to go in with me, wherever I go. I haven’t really had any problems. Folks are used to seein’ bigger assistance dogs, so Taco takes a little getting used to, but it don’t take long."

"I was in Vietnam all of ‘68 and ‘69. Heck, we didn’t worry about the stuff gettin’ sprayed in the air. We had other worries. By the time my doctor sent me to the VA to get checked out several years ago, the damage had already been done. 

"When they ran some tests they knew what had happened. Heck, one asked me if I’d been drinking Agent Orange, overseas!"

He laughed and then his seriousness returned and gave me a little more information on his companion. Apart from being a friendly face during a PTSD episode, Taco has another, equally valuable function.

"I’ve got diabetes real bad. That little cuss actually knows when my blood sugar is crashing and he’ll wake me up! Any time he starts lickin’ my arm and whimpering, I know to do a blood test."

Taco is one of a kind, almost literally. You see, Taco was already the family dog, BEFORE he was a Medical Alert Dog. The man put up his fingers to give me perspective.

"He’as only about three inches long when he’as born. He’s actually my daughter’s dog… She says I kidnapped him!"

He laughed again and the tiny assistant shifted his gaze from the door to the man, and then back to the door.

"I told my doctor that Taco’d been wakin’ me up and that three different times it happened right as my insulin was dropping and he put me in touch with someone who put me in touch with someone else… Pretty soon, they had me answering a bunch’a questions and then they asked me for Taco’s picture."

He flipped over the white I.D. tag on the dog’s collar. Yep, it was Taco. 

About ten seconds later, Taco became fidgety…

"Mama’s close. He can always tell."

When the woman appeared at the end of the aisle, Taco ran in three quick circles and zipped over to her.

"The sound of the drum is God’s healing energy. This energy relieves stress and tension. Playing the drum is even more beneficial because, it relaxes the body while stimulating the cardiovascular system, and allowing your inner creativity to express itself to the fullest."Jahruba’s been teaching local kids (and adults) to relax and find their inner rhythm for about four decades through the public school and library system, and through his private studio and classes around the Metro.I hadn’t seen my old friend in years so imagine my pleasure at wandering up on him, just enjoying the shade and playing his drum on Campus Corner.

"The sound of the drum is God’s healing energy. This energy relieves stress and tension. Playing the drum is even more beneficial because, it relaxes the body while stimulating the cardiovascular system, and allowing your inner creativity to express itself to the fullest."

Jahruba’s been teaching local kids (and adults) to relax and find their inner rhythm for about four decades through the public school and library system, and through his private studio and classes around the Metro.

I hadn’t seen my old friend in years so imagine my pleasure at wandering up on him, just enjoying the shade and playing his drum on Campus Corner.

"I’ve had her since she was born. Her mama got real sick, it was late in the season and there were some bad complications; her mama didn’t make it so that first winter I probably slept in the barn as much as I did in the house.""You slept in the barn?""Sure I did. I moved a cot out there and I had an electric blanket and a coffee kettle. It was cold but it wasn’t primitive. She bonded to me real early on. She still sees me as her Mama."She technically belongs to my daughter now, but she still lives here. If I’m out she still follows me around like a puppy.""You raise horses to sell, right?"He smiled and turned to the horse that had come up behind him and put her head over his shoulder. "Not all of ‘em; and some, not ever."

"I’ve had her since she was born. Her mama got real sick, it was late in the season and there were some bad complications; her mama didn’t make it so that first winter I probably slept in the barn as much as I did in the house."

"You slept in the barn?"

"Sure I did. I moved a cot out there and I had an electric blanket and a coffee kettle. It was cold but it wasn’t primitive. She bonded to me real early on. She still sees me as her Mama.

"She technically belongs to my daughter now, but she still lives here. If I’m out she still follows me around like a puppy."

"You raise horses to sell, right?"

He smiled and turned to the horse that had come up behind him and put her head over his shoulder. 

"Not all of ‘em; and some, not ever."

"What’s the most impulsive thing you’ve done?""About two weeks into dating we planned a trip to Puerto Rico together. This is the sorta risk I don’t normally take because it wasn’t really the best use of money and I didn’t know this girl at all except for the few weeks since we met; definitely whimsical and something that could have ended very poorly.""I guess it worked out…""In Puerto Rico we worked on a farm through an organization called ‘WorldWide Opportunities on Organic Farms’ and we picked arugula and went to the beach everyday. It was the most perfect experience ever."The experience taught me how to live like the little things don’t matter and really redirected my scope on life."

"What’s the most impulsive thing you’ve done?"

"About two weeks into dating we planned a trip to Puerto Rico together. This is the sorta risk I don’t normally take because it wasn’t really the best use of money and I didn’t know this girl at all except for the few weeks since we met; definitely whimsical and something that could have ended very poorly."

"I guess it worked out…"

"In Puerto Rico we worked on a farm through an organization called ‘WorldWide Opportunities on Organic Farms’ and we picked arugula and went to the beach everyday. It was the most perfect experience ever.

"The experience taught me how to live like the little things don’t matter and really redirected my scope on life."

We’d talked for about an hour about his kids, his grand kids, the people he’d known over the years; the knowledge that he’d gathered in his time…"I don’t really have any money to speak of," he said to me as he tipped the girl at the counter a $5 bill for his cocoa, "all I can really hope to leave my grand kids is a record of my experience and a few bits of wisdom."He took the well-worn Moleskine notebook from his inside jacket pocket and fumbled with it. He pulled the band off and it fell open, flat, to a page in the middle of the book - - I could barely keep mine open as I took notes, yet his seemed to anticipate his commands and comply without so much as a thought. He scooted the notebook toward me and I glanced through it. Socrates. Aristotle. Asimov. Coelho. I’d seen all the names before and had even read some of their writings, which is not to say that I fully understood them."This is a collection of truths that I’ve discovered over the years. I’m not leaving them money, but I do feel like I’m leaving them richer. Money is fleeting; these words will be with them, forever, I scanned another page, trying to remember what I’d learned about the authors of the passages within. "This is pretty deep. How old are your grand kids, again?"He shot a smile at me."Knowledge is plastic, Rustin. Knowledge worthy of time is malleable. You can hold it all your life and mumble it around in your head and maybe never understand it, but some day, at some point, you’ll have beaten that knowledge into a shape that will fit a gap in your understanding, just right."I slid the book back to him and he laid his hand on it."At that moment, when the knowledge fits, as your understanding of it becomes fully formed, you’re the richest person in the world."

We’d talked for about an hour about his kids, his grand kids, the people he’d known over the years; the knowledge that he’d gathered in his time…

"I don’t really have any money to speak of," he said to me as he tipped the girl at the counter a $5 bill for his cocoa, "all I can really hope to leave my grand kids is a record of my experience and a few bits of wisdom."

He took the well-worn Moleskine notebook from his inside jacket pocket and fumbled with it. He pulled the band off and it fell open, flat, to a page in the middle of the book - - I could barely keep mine open as I took notes, yet his seemed to anticipate his commands and comply without so much as a thought. 

He scooted the notebook toward me and I glanced through it. Socrates. Aristotle. Asimov. Coelho. I’d seen all the names before and had even read some of their writings, which is not to say that I fully understood them.

"This is a collection of truths that I’ve discovered over the years. I’m not leaving them money, but I do feel like I’m leaving them richer. Money is fleeting; these words will be with them, forever, 

I scanned another page, trying to remember what I’d learned about the authors of the passages within. 

"This is pretty deep. How old are your grand kids, again?"

He shot a smile at me.

"Knowledge is plastic, Rustin. Knowledge worthy of time is malleable. You can hold it all your life and mumble it around in your head and maybe never understand it, but some day, at some point, you’ll have beaten that knowledge into a shape that will fit a gap in your understanding, just right."

I slid the book back to him and he laid his hand on it.

"At that moment, when the knowledge fits, as your understanding of it becomes fully formed, you’re the richest person in the world."

"What piece of advice would you offer incoming college freshmen?"He became contemplative. It was a pretty day at the Theta Pond, and I was afraid that I’d bothered him… Instead, he offered this -"Since the first day I came to school, I’ve heard the phrase "There are three ‘S’s in college: Study, Sleep, and Socialize. And it’s only possible to do two of them well.""I disagree with the entire argument that you can only be good at 2 out of the 3. In fact, I take issue with the notion that that there are only 3 choices to begin with.""I’m listening…""In my time at Oklahoma State I have been able to work a part-time job, wear Pistol Pete’s head, build a Habitat for Humanity house, learn about historical Latin American art, take trips to New Orleans, Chicago, and Gulf Shores, shake hands with Bill Nye, spend almost all my money at Aspen Coffee, sit under the palm trees at Murphy’s, build relationships with people that have turned into my best friends, and graduate from college with an engineering degree in 4 - hopefully - years."To get back to the original question, there are times where I COULD have gotten a better grade in a class than I did, COULD have gotten more sleep, or COULD have been more social, but that’s not really the point. If you think you can fit your college experience inside of 3 simple categories you’re doing it wrong."My advice? Go explore. Get out of your comfort zone. Challenge yourself."He smiled."Oh, and Go Pokes."

"What piece of advice would you offer incoming college freshmen?"

He became contemplative. It was a pretty day at the Theta Pond, and I was afraid that I’d bothered him… Instead, he offered this -

"Since the first day I came to school, I’ve heard the phrase "There are three ‘S’s in college: Study, Sleep, and Socialize. And it’s only possible to do two of them well."

"I disagree with the entire argument that you can only be good at 2 out of the 3. In fact, I take issue with the notion that that there are only 3 choices to begin with."

"I’m listening…"

"In my time at Oklahoma State I have been able to work a part-time job, wear Pistol Pete’s head, build a Habitat for Humanity house, learn about historical Latin American art, take trips to New Orleans, Chicago, and Gulf Shores, shake hands with Bill Nye, spend almost all my money at Aspen Coffee, sit under the palm trees at Murphy’s, build relationships with people that have turned into my best friends, and graduate from college with an engineering degree in 4 - hopefully - years.

"To get back to the original question, there are times where I COULD have gotten a better grade in a class than I did, COULD have gotten more sleep, or COULD have been more social, but that’s not really the point. If you think you can fit your college experience inside of 3 simple categories you’re doing it wrong.

"My advice? Go explore. Get out of your comfort zone. Challenge yourself."

He smiled.

"Oh, and Go Pokes."