It's Sunday evening and I'm home.
I haven't left the house all day, really. It's just been me, my computer and the last miniature mountain of work I need to overcome before I'm graduated.
The funny part is that I have spent exactly none of this beautiful Sunday at the Nexus. For the last four years, I've checked into the Nexus office every Sunday, save finals week, vacation and those rare weekends when I actually tread beyond the corners of this "Having a great time in Santa Barbara!" postcard. But last Thursday, I shouted "Good night, Nexus!" for the last time and relegated myself to that weird status of "former Nexite." I'm gone. I'm done. I'm a vaguely familiar name written on the wall in chalk. Save for my farewell column I'm writing for this next week, my name is not going to be in the paper anymore.
I'm not all that sad, though, unless you count the problem of having to locate a new group of people who are financially obligated to watch and tolerate my antics. I wish I could have pulled myself out of this writing funk and actually written more for the paper this quarter, but overall I think I'm proud of my record: collectively, about 200 news stories, Artsweek articles and opinion columns, most of which don't suck.
I guess the only real problem now is trying to figure out what to do with myself. I'm jobless, but even more troubling than that is my sudden loss of idenity. As much as I would hate to admit it, that fucking paper made me the way I am. It organized my schedule and dictated who I knew and what I talked about and even how I write this journal. And now I don't have that. I'm not Drew of the Daily Nexus anymore. I'm not Drew, the roommate who doesn't clean up his stuff because he's too busy at the paper. I don't even have those crappy business cards that the past two managing editors pissed away company money on.
I don't even know what free time is, really. Here I am typing an essay on my feelings about quitting my job — surely a ramp-up for the main event of my farewell column. What if takes me four years to re-learn how to be a real person?