The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Friday May 7th

Farewell column: Gratitude, and some sage advice

vance_stiles

To The Daily Tar Heel: thanks for letting me be a part of your wonderful operation for one brief semester. 

In all honesty, I used to make fun of the DTH on a daily basis. I would joke that it was a “communist newsletter” and “a bunch of kids trying to stir up high school drama.” 

Boy, was I wrong. 

I joined the Editorial Board back in January, with an application that was thrown together over winter break. Thankfully, Rajee and Paige decided to welcome me with open arms. 

From my first editorial board meeting to my last read, I was floored by the care, kindness and joy that each member of the DTH has for journalism and writing. My offhand, derogatory comments were quickly replaced with a quiet respect for the overworked and awesome management staff. 

Nowhere else do you get to wax poetic about any topic that you want to (within reason), and have people be excited about it. Being able to take my years of policy and economics classes and apply them to articles was something I only imagined getting to do way down the road. 

From the team’s acceptance of me writing about obscure economic topics (shipping bottlenecks and the sort) to their support of my random graphs on Twitter, I don’t think I’ve ever met a team of college students who want to support and hear each other's ideas so much. 

To end this hodgepodge of a farewell column, here are some quotes I love that keep me going in the right direction every day:

“You know how I made good Marines? Training the shit out of them.” 

Maj. Dennis A. Dunbar 

This is one of my favorite quotes, and it always reminds me to bring my best to everything. There’s no reason not to do an extra rep at the gym, to do that extra practice problem set or go to those office hours. Want to be good? You have to train it in. 

“In the long run we are all dead.” 

– John Maynard Keynes

He hit this one pretty square on the head. It doesn't really matter how much wealth or status you acquire in the long run — it’s all gone at some point. Maximize utility now.

“Discipline equals freedom.” 

– Jocko Willink 

Most people think that being disciplined means you’re boring and stupid. The truth is quite different. To create discipline for yourself is to create the space and time to have freedom. 

“In war the chief incalculable is the human will.”

– B. H. Liddell Hart

In life, you can plan as much as you want to for every eventuality. However, the one thing you can’t plan for is how weird and idiosyncratic people are. Lean into that and learn from that. Embrace (heck, even be) the chief incalculable in every moment, and let it lead you to new discoveries. 

Thanks, DTH, and I hope the next economic-minded opinion writer comes soon after me. You always need to have someone around who wants to look at the yield curve and Bitcoin futures with a passion. 

@chief__goon

opinion@dailytarheel.com

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