Pre-Covid College: A Love Letter

To College before the Coronavirus; a love I yearn dearly for,

Hey there. It’s me, Henry. How’s it going? I hope you’re doing well. I know it’s been a while since we last talked. Gosh, it’s been too long, longer than my dick used to get whenever I saw you haha. Shit. This weather we’re having… It’s crazy for this time of year.

Jesus Christ, no way I just said that.

I know shit hasn’t been the same since March 12th, right after Rudy Gobert tested positive for Covid, but that doesn’t mean you weren’t on my mind. I know I haven’t been myself recently, but I mean, how could you blame me. First they shut down the NBA, then March Madness, then restaurants, movie theaters, and then I lose you. But it’s not like I could move on, I couldn’t even leave my house. I had to sHELLter in place.

Life was too simple without you. 

I played monopoly with my sisters five nights in a row; we didn’t start the game over, we’d always just pick up where we left off and play until there were tears (usually mine). When telemarketers would call me, I’d ask them about the product and then ask them how their day was. I took the trash out everyday, even if it meant walking outside with one single banana peel. I started raising my hand at dinner when someone told a story. Sometimes I’d walk into the garage, pick up a razor scooter, and purposefully have it swing and make perfect contact with my ankle, just so that I could feel something. I started gambling on a Taiwanese website if the local weather man would get tomorrow’s forecast correct. They now have my dad’s social security number and are holding it for ransom.

The point is I’m struggling and the truth is I miss you. I miss you so much. I miss your smells; the sweet aroma of vomit in the hallway fused with a fragrance of a house-made chop. I miss hearing your loud yells of passionate intercourse in the room next door. It happened all the time, even when I wanted to go to bed and get a good night’s sleep. The silence in my home now is so loud, I can hear the heartbeat in my foot. 

I miss hearing, “Who do you know here?”  I loved the way I opened portals to the fourth dimension and created a person who had written me an invite to the party. He was always inside the party, on the phone and couldn’t be bothered, but if you could just let me squeeze on through, Trevor, that’d be superb!

I miss the perilous 3 AM walks home from the bar, where the guys and I would decode the meaning of life just before coming across a construction site with a Bobcat tractor ready to go. Sometimes the door would be unlocked and the keys would be inside, so we figured we’d give back to the community and dig a couple holes for FREE. 

I miss walking around the fraternity house with shoes on. I was always laced up in drip. I figured I might as well look good while dodging tetanus. In my home now, I walk around barefoot and I only wear three outfits. I don’t seek color combos anymore, I just seek comfort. Yesterday I wore green shorts with an orange shirt. I felt like I was working at Old Navy. I only produce one drop of sweat every four weeks now, so my clothes come right off my back and go straight into the drawers at night time, ready to be worn again in a few days.

I actually miss having the fitted sheets being rolled up into a ball and wedged between my twin mattress and the wall. I always enjoyed defying modern physics and, like a prized surgeon, carefully unraveling that ball of fitted sheet and tightly putting it back on the mattress. Now, my mom makes my bed everyday. She also does my laundry, cooks my food, and wipes my ass. She got me a bib for Christmas. I said thank you

I miss ordering a pizza with breadsticks to be delivered at 1:36 AM. 

God forbid, if I open the fridge after 11 PM now, I’m fat.

Back then, if I started drinking before the moon came out, no one would be any the wiser. But now, my parents hold a press-conference every time I crack open a beer in day light. I’m 21 years old and my mom still calls me “Boo-Boo Bear.”

I know what you’re gonna say: there’s still college out there, happening right now. But it’s just not the same. It’s not you. I can’t do half the college fuckery now that I used to do with you. You were special and I should have never taken you for granted. 

I hope this message finds you well and we can someday rekindle what we had. You were the only one I ever needed. 

I love you,


I actually really don’t miss the time that me, Jake Betush, and Glen Kosova played “Where’s Waldo” with two homeless guys and a steak knife in the Domino’s Pizza parking lot. That was really stressful. If that knife went just one inch deeper, Glen could have been killed.

Written by Henry Marken

I lost my pinky finger at age 4, but then found it again at a soup kitchen when I was 15. Survivor of a wild turkey attack (2008). I went to the University of Phoenix before it was cool to do college online. Currently in a lawsuit with Crayola after a devastating purple crayon incident.

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