Commentary  Life Lines: Steps to the end of the tunnel with little feet

“I’m glad to be with you…here at the end of all things.”

– Frodo Baggins

Terrible, isn’t it? After all the sweat, tears, laughter and beers, to be sitting here, knowing that it’s just about finished. For first-years, what little they remember from Frosh Week has all but disappeared at the end of a year full of “first times.” And for the old timers, it might feel like just another tick in the clock, but whatever it was for you, this academic year is drawing to a close, never to be had again.

I did write a big thank you speech, listing my mom, Alexander Keith, and all seven of my loyal readers. My editor promised he’ll publish it in the back pages somewhere, but I have a sneaky suspicion he’ll just chuck it, or worse, send it to The Tribune. Either way, I still feel inclined to throw out a generic tip of the hat to all those that inspired me: so to the guy who scrawled philosophy on washroom stalls, the jerk who wore a shirt in winter, President Obama, my big-ass beard, Sean Turner, and anybody I forgot – here’s to you!

Now that that’s over, let’s get down to business. As per usual there’s a ton of noteworthy stuff going on in the world – the international economy, Stephen Harper going to the loo while the G20 photo is taken – and as per usual, I won’t write about any of it. There are thousands of columnists out there vying for the best/wittiest/critique-y-est take on things. Adding my sentimental voice to the lot surely won’t make the picture any prettier. No, instead I’ll return to how the sun is setting on this year of study.

Now if you know the whole story, you’ll be aware that Frodo-dear has no idea what he’s talking about when he utters these sombre – albeit touching – words in the shadow of Mount Doom. He was, of course, nowhere near the end of all things. The Shire needed to be saved, Aragorn’s wedding needed attending, and Hobbiton needed a mayor. Yet in the darkest of times, Frodo could not help but resign to the race being over.

But – and here comes this week’s cliché yet brilliant line – the end was only the beginning. And cheesy or not, I won’t hesitate to say it is the same for you. First-, second- or third-year student, this is the end of one section, one chapter. For your sake, I hope it was phenomenal. Enjoy the last few moments, finish strong, and take on the next chapter with a bang.

Now you might be sitting there, realizing you had just read 500 words and you’re not really sure about what, but you feel alright about it…. That’s great, that’s what Life Lines was all about. This is the end of things for this year, and for my part, I was glad to be with you.

Isn’t Johanu sweet? Makes ya feel good, don’t it? Alright, send the chap an email at