At the beginnings of our lives we all see the same thing, an endless lifetime ahead of us, filled with wonder and glory.

At our youngest ages we are invincible, and the whole world is perfect. Our only cares in the world at that time are what game to play next and if you can sneak a cookie from the cookie jar.

As we grow older, we soon get placed into a system of schooling and character&-building. Life becomes more regulated, but it still has freedom. By high school, we’ve developed an understanding of the world around us and begin forming our own ideals. By college, we start to solidify our ideals, beliefs and goals, creating who we are going to be for the rest of our lives.

However, we have little time to enjoy it. Those of us who’ll be lucky enough to live to 100 years of age will have already lived through about one&-fifth of our lives.
This may not sound like much until you realize that the rest of your life will be about your career, family and other odds and ends of being ‘grown&-up.”
This observation is not meant to make you aware of how little time you have left, but rather to let you see the big picture. Understand that the choices we make now govern how we are remembered.

This is not a sad story. In fact, by the end, it should be life&-changing.

Great cultures of a bygone time fought to have their stories told. This was done with the power of mankind using blood, sweat and tears to create a mark on the world, to be invincible and remembered for all of time. Countless men have searched for ways to live forever. Whether it be by discovering new lands, building great structures or leaving a mark upon history, all try to be immortal in the face of time.

We have not changed much in a millennium. Everyone still tries to make a name for him or herself, trying desperately not to be forgotten creating a culture of loners. Everyone tries to accomplish something, but history fades, and names and faces are forgotten making those deeds seem almost pointless. It’s sad to say that we are not as invincible as we think. Everyone inevitably dies.

Unfortunately, sometimes that is sooner than anyone would hope for.
I myself have recently lost a good friend. However, I’ve learned that while losing loved ones or friends is tragic, they are never lost to us.

Their lessons and their words still ring through us like a note played in the hallowed halls of a temple. They live in us!

Mourn if you must, but never let their spirit die in you we are what makes them invincible. You are their anchor to earth, allowing them to live in you is the greatest gift you can give them.

Everyone has this effect on others, and everyone is affected by others it is pointless to argue this. Every emotion you show and truth you tell creates an effect in others.

Conversely, every lie you tell and every emotion you hide has a negative effect on others, hiding who you are from them. With this in mind remember these words, ‘Mean what you say and say what you mean!”

Take this simple phrase and realize that every single action you take is like a ripple in a pond it sends out waves affecting all things around it. Life is too short for people not to know you or how you feel. Bottling up one’s emotions is a fool’s courage.
Real courage comes from expressing oneself and never fearing the consequences. Stop worrying about being great in the future, and be great now. Do what you love, and never back down.

My friend Scott did this. He was a great poet and a great person. He pursued his dreams by following his love of literature and English, and while he may have passed on, his memory lives on.

Memories, stories and teachings are carried with us, and we pass them on to those whom we touch. Be a crusader and a champion of life and never be forgotten by those you love.

Minahan is a member of
the class of 2012.



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