Photo cred - Steve Chou
Congratulations on graduating! Lots of people are going to be telling you what the future holds for you, and you assume you already know. You did what you were told, got good grades, kept your head down. Now life is going to reward you with some success for all that hard work right? Not necessarily. Here's a little bit of what you're expecting from life as a civilian, and how it'll actually pan out.
1. Working hard all through school guarantees you a good job in your field
Reality: You're working as a barista somewhere on Queen West, and spend all of your free time working at an internship to pump up your CV.
2. Employers care about what school you went to
Reality: Whether you got a diploma at U of T or did a certificate at Humber, at the end of the day, connections are what get you jobs.
3. You're going to find your soul mate by the time you graduate. I mean, U of T has such a huge student body, and you go to all the parties, there's no way you won't meet The One.
Reality: You'll date a few assholes while you're in school and graduate single, and you'll find the person you end up marrying on Tinder a year later.
4. The commuting hell will end once you've graduated
Reality: You will never be free of the subway. It owns you. Get used to it.
5. You won't be able to handle the difference in price between a student metropass and the regular adult metropass
Reality: It's like a $20 difference, you probably won't even notice.
6. You'll finally get away from all those assholes you hated seeing in university!
Reality: Toronto's big, but it's not that big. You're still gonna run into those douchebags at your favourite bars in Little Portugal and Little Italy all the time.
7. You'll have your life figured out by the time you graduate
Reality: You'll spend the first few months of your new found freedom getting take out from Chinatown and walking it back to your Annex apartment where you're marathoning the entirety of Six Feet Under.
8. You won't need your parents' help anymore
Reality: Now that you don't get to live in that reduced-price apartment you found on the U of T classifieds, your rent's about to shoot up. No way you can afford first and last on your part time Popeye's salary.
9. You'll never set foot on campus again
Reality: That Ryerson quad cafeteria is so cheap though...
10. You'll make all new, professional friends
Reality: You're going to be hanging out with the people from your program at George Brown for years to come.
11. You can finally go traveling, now that you have some free time!
Reality: You think you'll save up some money for that road trip, but you won't. Between paying rent you can barely afford, and sustaining that drinking habit you developed at school, you'll be barely scraping by until you have a job that takes up all of your time.
12. If you're from out of town and you go back home after you graduate, you'll totally come back to visit all the time!
Reality: You'll come back once or twice over the next few years, and then, as time passes, Toronto will just be a distant memory from your youth.
13. You're going to stop smoking weed.
Reality: You'll never stop smoking weed. Not with Roach-a-Rama so close by, anyway.
14. You're finally going to start going to the gym!
Reality: Despite the abundance of 24 hour gyms in this city, you will never actually end up getting a membership. Let's face it, if you didn't take advantage of your school's gym, which was cheaper, why would you get into fitness now?
15. That job you accepted right after you graduated is just to support you until you're on your feet
Reality: There's plenty of job opportunities in this city, but you'll get way too comfortable at the job you have, and never take the time to find something else.
16. You'll start exploring some of the drinking spots in the city that you never got to check out before
Reality: You're hanging out with all of the same people from school, and they all want to go to Pour Girl again tonight. You'll rarely step foot into a bar you haven't already been to.
17. You'll stop doing cheesy college shit
Reality: Here you are again at Dance Cave. What happened to your life?
18. You'll eat in more
Reality: Only if "eating in" means "abusing just-eat.ca." You know Lee Garden delivers, right?
19. You're done with school
Reality: Two years later, you'll find yourself looking at York's graduate program acceptance requirements.
20. You'll finally have time to work on your [writing/art/music/business idea]
Reality: Hey Lucy has drink specials every night. Do you really have time?
21. You'll read more
Reality: You'll sell most your books one weekend for pocket money, and use it to buy yourself way too many drinks at Get Well during a Ms. Pac Man competition between you and one of your friends.
22. You and your friends will find yourselves a stylish apartment on Queen West
Reality: You're moving into your parents' basement in Etobicoke.
23. You need to have a good GPA
Reality: Your GPA will matter as much as your possession of a driver's license: not at all.
24. You'll have more free time
Reality: This is on point actually. You'll have too much free time to do anything productive with it. Might as well get acquainted with the clubs in the Entertainment District.
25. You'll be wiser than the freshmen coming into your school
Reality: You'll really just be more jaded. The sight of hopeful freshmen all over the Annex every September will fill you with bitterness.
26. You're smarter than those freshmen though!
Reality: You're just better at bullshitting than they are. Which is a useful skill, I suppose. It's what keeps the Financial District running.
27. You'll keep up with your school's cultural events
Reality: Despite the fact that York has tons of talks and events that are open to the public, it's so far away that you'll probably just never go back.
28. You'll never have to deal with those charity canvassers that are all over campus again
Reality: They're everywhere, man.
29. You're finally free!
Reality: One year down the line, you'll find yourself missing living in the Annex, surrounded by your friends, and being minutes away from class.
Photo cred – The Burger’s Priest