Reflection: Carolyn Quimby

CarlynQI’ve put off writing this reflection for a really long time, but the moment of truth is finally here. So here’s my ultimate love letter to The New Paltz Oracle.

I suppose I’ll preface this with the fact that I never wanted to be a journalist. In fact, if you would’ve told me two years ago that I would declare a journalism minor, join the newspaper and completely fall in love with it, I would have laughed in your face. I always respected journalism, but I was so wrapped up in my Norton Anthologies and creative writing workshops that it just wasn’t on my radar. Then — on a whim — I took Journalism I and (surprisingly) followed my professor’s recommendation to write for The Oracle. The rest is history, as they say.

I’ve only been on The Oracle for a year and a half, but it feels so much longer. The paper feels like something that has always been a part of me — a place I could call home and people I could call family. Most days all I want to do is relax within these orange walls. Yes, even when I’m on deadline and stressed and on the verge of an InDesign-related breakdown, I feel okay because there’s no one I’d rather be with and nothing I’d rather be doing.

Not many people can do what they love with people they love, but I did for three semesters and I wouldn’t take back a second of it. In fact, my only regret in college is not joining The Oracle sooner; not soaking up every single orange wall-filled moment; not having more issues under my belt. But here we are. I can’t believe it, but it’s actually over and it doesn’t feel real.

I guess the easiest (and hardest) thing is to give my shoutouts to the people who made my time inside and outside this office amazing.

Cat, I don’t know what I’m going to do without you. You are one of my best friends, and I know this paper will flourish with you as EIC. Please believe in yourself as much as I believe in you.

Andrew, remember when I used to sass you? That was before we realized we’re actually the same person (minus crying and the oxford comma). Thanks for being you.

Katie, the day we stopped circling and started melting was the best day (for us) and the worst day (for the world). You understand me on a soul level.

Rachel, when I inevitably drown in a pile of puppies, I know you’ll be right next to me. Let’s start a zine full of fierce ladies, handsome men and dogs, okay?

Sam, I’m so glad we got so close. You’re the funniest person I know. You win the quote board of my heart.

Suzy and Zameena, I love you two so much and I’m so glad you were my copy editors for my last semester. Zameena, you are a ray of sunshine. Have an amazing time abroad, but please bring your beautiful self back to A&E.  Suzy, we’ve been together since the beginning. I have no doubt that you’re going to be amazing. I can’t wait to read your pun-filled, sexually-suggestive headlines.

Zan, I trust your opinion more than anyone. I’ve been so proud to follow in your footsteps. I love you, dude. Julie, the levels of emotional volatility between us are unparalleled. I miss you every single day. John Brandi, you perfect beauty queen. I can’t help myself; I love you and nobody else. Maria, I always heard your quiet, funny comments. Let’s watch “SVU” and bum around Long Island this summer.

Molly, from freshman year to our A&E team, you’ve always been there. I love you. Angela, you’re an angela (no, really). Also, sticks or twists? Joe Neggie, you are an angel and my soul sister. Tursi, you are the most sarcastic and the most perfect. Robin, you’re the Scherbatsky to my Sparkles. April, you’re going places, girl. Call me when you’re a famous magazine editor.  Lil’ Lief, I hope you thought I was funny. Stay sassy. John Tappen, I’m glad someone else loves Ron Swanson (and apostrophe placement) as much as I do. Julie G., I actually don’t understand your talent. Ben, please come back from Australia and have a dance party with me. Caterina, I’ll miss you saying “heha” and grossing Katie out. Jen, I dare you to be more delightful.

This wouldn’t be a reflection without me gushing over the fourth estate, and the insane faith I have in it. As an incredibly astute Oracle member once wrote, “there’s merit in what you do,” and I know there’s merit in what we do. No matter how much we joke that no one reads the paper, what we do is important and it matters. Don’t let anyone tell you differently, because it takes a special kind of talent to keep your finger on the pulse of this campus, town and village.

Not many people understand what we do or why we do it, but that’s okay because this paper is a labor of love. They won’t see the manic Mondays, sleepless Wednesdays, or bleary-eyed Thursdays, but they’ll see the paper (and hopefully read it). This campus will always have an incredibly-thorough, ethically-sound, beautifully-written news source because of The Oracle. And if that’s not something to be proud of every single day, I’m not really sure what is.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The Oracle is not only filled with the greatest writers, photographers and artists I’ve ever met, but the greatest people I’ve ever met. We may be a psycho, pun-loving, bullshit-hating group, but we love this shit. We love each other, this campus, this paper, and, fuck, if that doesn’t make me want to sob.

When I look back on my college experience, I know I’ll remember this the most: the sleepless nights, marathon writing sessions, countless coffee runs, manic 3 a.m. conversations, the feeling of holding a new issue, our 14-phrase lexicon, “Born to Run” at 7 a.m., and — of course — all of you. I’m going to miss you all so much, but I know you’re going to be okay. (After all, baby, you were born to run).

As this reflection comes to a close, I guess there’s only one thing (well, maybe two things) left to say. I love you all. Bye.