I’m worried about missing things. Or at least I’m sad about it. Melancholy. Prematurely nostalgic. Something like that. I’m going to be gone a hell of a long time, and I’ll be far farther out of touch than I was when I was in Spain. Not to mention busier. It’s all sorts of things. The first I had to overcome was the idea that all the shit I’d be doing here for 22 and 23 and 24 would be worth staying for. A summer spent in DC doing what I always do in DC (mostly nothing) has helped to disabuse me of that idea. Still, stuff remains. I won’t be here for the next two Hobbit movies, for instance. Neil Gaiman just came out with a new book, and since I haven’t got it or time to read it this summer, chances are I won’t know what it’s about for a couple years. Ditto every book I might have picked up. I can’t imagine English book will be as hard to get in Mexico as they were in Spain, but it won’t be as easy as, say, here. I might not see the end of this season of the Newsroom for a very long time. I have to call all these things up one by one so I can see how petty they are and let them go.
Missing new games might be the point on which I find myself with the fewest sympathizers. Which is fair—if you asked me whether a book or a game were more valuable, I’d by and large say the book. But there’s one that I’m going to be bummed about. It’s Rome II. Look at that. That’s a debate in the Roman Senate. In a game. I was in eighth grade when the first Rome came out, but I didn’t play until I was in high school. I happened to pick up that game and Issac Asimov’s series of Roman histories at the same time, and the confluence of the two played a far from insignificant role in landing me where I am now: as a history guy who was lucky enough to know he’s a history guy and who got the right push at the right time (credit Father Dave Collins, SJ) to pick history. So I can’t say video games were the biggest thing or whatever, but I’d have to be a moron to ignore their influence and way more immature not to be tingling at the thought of this next one. But while I might be able to download some books and stream some shows on occasion, Rome II is far beyond the reach of my hardware and will remain at a few years’ remove, waiting for me to grow out of it (I hope I don’t—it’s tailored to my academic interests and it packs in a couple encyclopedias worth of information. Imagine if Mathblaster had been fun).
In the end, like everything else I’ve been writing. it’s about letting go. Of my stuff, of my life here, of my friends, and of all the things I might have done. It helps to know that while I might have got some reading done, all the bars and events and concerts I’m imagining would have gone just as poorly attended as they do now and as they have for the last four years of my residence in the District. And I’ve been making a last ditch this summer anyway. I’ve finally gotten to Said and Kundera at least.