What really sticks in my craw

Kai Bealey

You know what really sticks in my craw? Tom Petty. I’m sure you’re all familiar with old Tom Petty, and I’m sure that many of you love him. He’s such a smart guy, and he’s such a free spirit. I don’t know what I would do if I weren’t able to access the vast knowledge that a rock star like Tom Petty has to impart on young impressionable college students.

Except not! We are all familiar with one of Tom’s more famous quotes. If it hasn’t been viewed on the numerous college websites about how to survive freshman year, then it can be seen on a number of AIM profiles. If you are unfamiliar with it, however, allow me to help. The quote is as follows:

“I’ve learned one thing, and that’s to quit worrying about stupid things. You’ve got four years to be irresponsible here. Rela; work is for people with jobs. You’ll never remember class time, but you’ll remember time you wasted hanging out with your friends. So stay out late. Go out on a Tuesday when you have a paper due Wednesday. Spend money you don’t have. Drink ’til sunrise. The work never ends, but college does.” -Tom Petty

Isn’t that sweet? That’s really a great quote. Tom is such a free spirit. He’s so wise. And by so wise, I mean stupid. Tom Petty is that guy who tries to impart wisdom about things that he doesn’t know anything about. He’s like the guy that was really cool in high school who now works at the local quickie mart and tries to tell you how to be successful, forgetting the fact that he works at a quickie mart.

First of all, come on Villanova. Here’s a little known fact about Tom Petty. He never went to college! He became a rock star right out of high school. Good for him. He made money and had fun doing it. I have no problem with that, but the majority of the people who follow his advice will only end up having to waste time “finding themselves” after graduating college and take up a desk job with some random company because they didn’t take college seriously.

What’s the deal with the whole “I have to find myself” thing anyway? I mean how do you lose yourself? Do you go out one night and leave yourself at the club? Does your “self” accidentally fall out of your pockets when you do your laundry? Do you accidentally drop yourself down the drain in the shower? Maybe you should try to remember where you were when you last had yourself, you know? Maybe do a little back tracking? Maybe find out that the self you were looking for was right in front of you the whole time. Maybe it just took a little turbulence to help you realize who you are. Little trials and tribulations? Yeah, I don’t buy it. I guarantee you’ll find your “self” when you stop looking and get things done.

Just like those people who say “Everything happens for a reason.” They’re absolutely right that it happens for a reason; the reason is that you made it happen … but hey, I’m a realist.

But Tom Petty doesn’t think that way. He’s a lot wiser than that. He’s such a free spirit you know? Deductive logic is beyond him.

College is fun, no doubt, but it wasn’t put there so that you can be irresponsible. It’s there for you to be educated, not only academically, but socially. And I must admit, it’s difficult to get a social education when you can’t carry a conversation because you are bent over a toilet from drinking ’til sunrise. “The work never ends, but college does.” You know what else doesn’t end? Failure!

I leave you with this, Villanova. Life isn’t just some string of chance encounters that will hopefully turn out well in the end. Life is action and reaction. Therefore, please, for the sake of your tuition, take responsibility for your actions. Live a life that allows you to do everything to the best of your abilities. And that’s what really sticks in my craw. Good luck, Villanova, and godspeed.