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I was “randomly” assigned my first two roommates in college. I chose Northwestern without having set foot on the campus and I knew no one, so my choice in roommates was left up to the lottery assignments of Residential Life. And it lived up to being random…at best.

One roommate eventually confessed to lying on her housing application about crucial details concerning neatness, waking and bedtimes and likes/dislikes, etc. Her reasoning: she didn’t want to live with someone like herself. And it worked, for her. The other roommate, I still have no idea.

The truth omitter turned out to be very into politics (one commonality between us) and single handedly started and ran the College Republicans on our campus. During our first year Newt Gingrich was visiting and speaking at St. Olaf College. I had a best friend from high school attending St. Olaf so we all made an evening of it. I only vaguely remember meeting him and have no recollection of what he spoke about but at least there is photographic evidence.

Fast forward to my third year in the graphic design department. The summer before our Senior year was when most students completed their internships. My great Aunt Becky (awesome, not old) lives in Washington D.C. and worked on Capitol Hill. Her office, the Senate Republican Conference, had a design internship position open for the summer. I was accepted and spent close to three months fascinated with life in the nation’s capital. I’d go back in a heartbeat.

At the time the SRC was overseen by Senator Rick Santorum. We met with and supported all the Republican senators but had the most access to Santorum. The most impressionable time was at a private breakfast with just him and the office interns. It was quite the experience sitting in the Senate dining room at a table with ambitious people personally learning from a leader of the country. I remember him as being gracious, funny and open…and probably patient with what were very likely elementary questions from college students.

And now they are both running for president. Wow. I’ve never met Mitt Romney…and I hope there is never a picture that contains both me and Ron Paul.

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