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Pints and Passions

Pints and Passions

Your memory works in weird ways. I had a flashback today of me sitting on the patio at the Red Lion in downtown Toronto, having pints in the sun and waxxing philosophical with my university friends.

We would often go there after class, in the evenings, on the weekend, when it was sunny, if it was raining - let's be realistic - did we need any excuse?

We would sit and chat - sometimes about our lives in our hometowns or funny stories about professors who just "sucked a lot".

Most of the time, in it would end up in heated debate about politics and history. We had so many ideas. So many dreams. And we were all sure that one day, we would change the world.

Just by knowing and having the opinions we did, we figured we could do it better then it was being done at the moment.

It was the power of youth. The endless possibilities. It was those wonderful years between being a teenager and becoming an adult where you realize the freedom of being on your own but are not necessarily having to accept all the responsibility of being a grown-up.

I was always the conservative. I think, in the end, it was more because I liked to be the Devil's advocate, see people actually stand by their convictions, without getting flustered or angry, but by making coherent arguments for their side.

I always believe that if you're going to say something, make sure you have the facts - and convictions - to back it up. In later years, D would ask me why I would always get people to prove what they were saying. I guess I just never made blanket statements and expected people to take my word at face value so why should I not expect that of other people?

My friends would go on about social conscience and liberal ideals mixed with responsible government. Sometimes we would agree, most times not but in the end, we were always just trying to find a way to make it better.

For some reason, it was like we needed to debate. Not sure that there was a debating team at our school but if there was, we would be the Super Agressive Drinking Chicks team and attempt to kick ass with our "enormous" amounts of knowlege.

And then, somewhere along the way, it ended.

It started when we all started to go down different paths. We stopped trying to change the world and starting trying to get our own lives on track. Sometimes, I wonder where some of the ladies have gone. One of them has become one of my dearest friends and I hear through the grapevine about the others but it's not as though we keep in touch THAT much.

After university, I kept in touch with a couple of them. There would still be the odd debate but it wasn't the same. Now, we had jobs to worry about, car loans, student loans, rent.

There was no homework, there was overtime.

There was no skipping first class, there was the 8 a.m. meeting.

There was no flexible hours, there was 9 to 5.

There was life. Real life. Smacking us in the face.

I'm guessing the transition was hard - if I look back on it now, I would have blamed it on something else.

And today, I am happy. I like the way things have turned out.

Instead of "hacking butts" I "get huge" at the gym.

Instead of pints every night, it's a glass of red wine day.

Instead of late night escapades, it's reading in bed by 10:30.

It's different but it's nice.

I did, however, get a pang of "aaawwwww" when that memory flashed in my brain.

I want that innocence again. The belief that I can take on the world.

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