Swan Song: All good things must come to an end

Ryan Lindner graduates from Texas A&M with a bachelor’s in political science on Saturday, May 11, 2024
(Photo courtesy of Ryan Lindner)
(Photo courtesy of Ryan Lindner)

I didn’t want to write this. “Swan songs” always struck me as a bit corny. I mean, why would anyone want to read about some college kid reflecting over his years in student media as if he was stepping down from an actually distinguished position? Ultimately, we’re simply students who enjoy writing and have a weak spot for newspapers and Times New Roman — more quirky than cool, if we’re being honest. 

However, the closer graduation approaches, the more sentimental I’m becoming about the years I’ve spent here in the basement of the Memorial Student Center writing, or ranting, depending on who you ask, about everything under the sun. I am — rather, was — the opinion editor, after all. 

If anything, consider this Swan song a closer to a memorable adventure full of friends, laughs, and the ever-present stress of meeting deadlines. 

I joined The Battalion as an opinion writer in the summer of 2022. My motivation? I read one of the worst opinions I ever had the displeasure of contemplating in an earlier Battalion print edition. Armed with a mind full of half-baked opinions and an argumentative nature, I applied and began writing a weekly column covering topics ranging from state politics and campus culture to student government drama and even a review of Jimmy Buffett’s posthumous album — possibly my favorite article. 

In Jan. 2023, I took what little experience I had and interviewed for the job of opinion editor.  Since then, I’ve spent most of my free time trying to keep up with editing all of the articles that my friends, known as The Battalion opinion desk, have been pumping out for the last couple of years. While there are probably a million things I would rather do than make edits on a Google Doc. I’m confident in saying that I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

It’s within the newspaper-covered walls of MSC L400 where I found my place, my people and not to be overly philosophical, I found a little bit of myself. 

To my fellow editors, Ana Sofia, Caleb, Zoe, Kylie, Hunter, Luke, Sophie, Amy, Chris, Kyle, Ana, Sydnei, Anna, Hilani and Pranay, and the past editors who have moved on to greener pastures, thank you so much for your friendship and pushing me to give it my all every single day.

To the opinion desk, Isa, Maddie, Bj, Charis, Nihan, and Eddie, y’all are the most witty, intelligent, hard-working writers in the business. I would say that I hope I’ve taught you all something, but in all honesty, I think I might have learned more from y’all than you all learned from me. So, keep writing, be yourselves, pursue your passions and don’t forget to fill out your photo requests. 

As my history professor said after his lecture on the collapse of the Soviet Union, “All good things must come to an end,” and so must my time in Aggieland. Goodbye College Station, goodbye Texas A&M and goodbye to my friends at The Battalion. 

Thanks for the memories. 

Ryan Lindner was a political science senior and opinion editor for The Battalion

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