Danai Leninger: Associate Sports Editor 2007-08

    My Guardian soiree began long
    before I entered the hallowed halls of our prestigious institution, dating back
    to when I was a pimply faced, mid-pubescent teen on the staff of our high
    school’s newspaper, the Lowell.
    Alongside several future world leaders, including Sports Editor Rael “Themba”
    Enteen, we commandeered the sports page, adding our personalized flair and
    sports-minded nuances to the section as we pleased. It was fun, but coming into
    UCSD, I hardly thought about joining the newspaper, opting instead to immerse
    myself solely in my studies. It was not until Rael got on the horn after the
    departure of his former associate that I mulled over donning the No. 45 and
    bringing back the team to greatness. After little deliberation, I laced up my
    Jumpmans and entered the fray.

    (Photo Illustration by Erik Jepsen/Guardian)

    I’ve had a great time here and
    most of my memories deal not with the paper but the people who make it. Putting
    together pages, writing (albeit rarely) and assigning stories were all fine,
    but I’ve been most drawn to the intellect of the staff. It’s great that there
    are smart and funny people who bring something to the table and still take care
    of business. For that stimulation I am grateful to you all.

    Thank you to fearless leader
    Charles, for your dedication to the cause. You got heart, kid. Thank you to
    McArdle, Mendoza and L’Heureux for having answers and accepting that I will
    never understand the difference between Focus and Hiatus. Gracias to Richard
    for not punching me in the face after I yell for you, and thanks for making my
    job even easier with your Korean technology. To the rest of the staff, thank
    you guys for the entertainment.

    Mike, my apologies for arriving
    late so many times for distribution. Anna G, much thanks for the new ride and
    also making sure I get that money.

    Finally, to the sports crew:
    thanks forever for being on top of your game. You are my ideal No. 3 hitter:
    powerful and consistent. To my fellow handsome entrepreneur Enteen: we did it
    mope, and it’s just the beginning.

    So here I am, sprinting out for
    the last time to my position and ready to begin the proverbial and uncertain
    “new things” in life that retiring athletes discuss at their teary-eyed
    farewells. Am I sad? A little. However, I think I’ll listen to my good friend
    and two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash and do what he once told me: “Get the fuck out
    of here, kid!” It’s been grand.

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