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To SY because I still remember when your favorite color was purple and mine was blue and because you made me watch Mean Girls with you for the first time. To AS because I think about us as children whenever I turn past Rainbow Drive.
To AP because I don’t know what’s going on in your life anymore and we should catch up but we’re both terrible texters. To AW because the last time I talked to you I called you a jerk, oops.
To DK for being my first crush and never accepting my follow request on Instagram. To NC for making me download Snapchat and being my longest streak until I deleted the app. To JY for kick-starting my love of ice skaters and poetry about bugs.
To AD because you’re insane, man, you can’t just tell us that you like pain and end the conversation there. To SC because you have irrevocably altered my sense of humor. To KF because I literally never knew you and then we started texting and then we stopped and now I don’t know you again. To SZ for every day we spent at the library together last summer.
To JH because we never talk as much as we should and when you hugged me last summer I wish the doors of the T had held off on closing for just a little bit longer. To HK because I think of you every time I see a pretty sky. To WL because I did end up trying Le’s, and now it’s my favorite restaurant in Harvard Square.
To YL and TS because god, you’re so effortlessly cool. To WSW because you’re really smart and I’d like to get to know you more. To TL and CY for sitting next to me in math class that one year. To AZ and JZ and PS and AM and more for helping me through six straight problem sets. To IBC because every time you made a point in section last semester you blew my mind. To SF for being so open and honest and kind with us. To VZ as a thank you for the honey.
To DG for always responding to my panicked proof question emails with careful hints and the patience of a saint. To CM for the sheer amount of interesting arguments you made with Star Wars during seminar. To KO because we only hung out once but it was a really good once. To HC for asking me how I was doing that one week.
To O because you’re a genius and you’re going to go far in life but I’ve already forgotten your last name so I’ll never know when you make it in the end. To NN and JS for being some of the nicest people in my life; I’m sorry we never got to say goodbye. To AL because I heard you got sent to boarding school for playing too much League (but that’s probably just a rumor) and I miss messing up your hair. To E because I have no idea what happened to you but I still remember how to pronounce your name.
To childhood best friends who have since moved on and mere acquaintances who wave but never stop to chat and strangers who happen to be there at the right time and place. To all of you for shaping my life in your tiny crucial ways.
I leave people behind in life like a trail of early exits and connections gone cold, and it’s only gotten worse with age. Especially now in college, when the face of every new person I meet at a party with the music too loud and every classmate suffering in the same breakout room fades too quickly into the amorphous mass of people I have already forgotten.
I want to know you all better. I want to go back to when we knew each other so well we could wear each other’s skins inside-out. Or if I never knew you that way, I want to spend the honest hours of 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. with you until we do.
But, at least for now, our time has passed and our paths have crossed. I suffer from main character syndrome in that I end up thinking of you all as supporting cast, background characters No. 43 and No. 44 who are there to provide exposition or parallel past encounters. I think of all the ways you have touched my life and not the ways I’ve touched yours.
Maybe I was remiss in calling you someone who has since forgotten about me. Maybe you miss me too. So shoot me a text, or I’ll shoot you one. I love you, or I loved you, and we should catch up.
Christina M. Xiao ’24 is a Crimson Editorial editor.
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