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Photo by Andre Freitas, courtesy @unsplash

I was having coffee with a friend awhile back who is a professor of philosophy. I told her that I knew early on I was a philosopher and while still in my twenties I also knew I wanted to be a writer.

I told her that about twenty years ago, I inquired with some universities here in Chicago about their PhD programs in philosophy. I was greeted with the academic equivalent of a snicker. “Well, in order to be accepted into the program, you need to be fluent in Greek and Latin. Are you fluent in Greek and Latin?,” one university rep asked, with all the snark she could muster.

“Um, no,” I said. “I don’t know Greek and Latin.”

I called another program and got the same, “Everyone thinks they can be a philosopher” response.

My friend, who probably IS fluent in Greek and Latin said, “And isn’t that funny, that now, for your living, you’re essentially a philosopher? I mean, you’re a philosopher and a writer, both.”

I smiled, and realized she was right.