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Letting go, holding on

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Senior Staff

MAY 11, 2023

Writing this column should be easy. I’ve drafted countless sentences and paragraphs in my head over the past few years. 

As I sit down to write this, though, none of those drafts feel right. There’s so much to say yet also nothing at all. How do you encapsulate four years of your life in 850 cohesive words?

In my happiest moments at the Daily Cal, I imagined a column full of fond memories and thank-you’s — of course, I’ve inevitably forgotten a good chunk of the moments I vowed to reference. Sitting in my bathroom in tears over the paper, I thought about all the ways I could say “Fuck the Daily Cal” in my last article. (I still think that would be a pretty iconic headline.)

My Daily Cal experience comprises neither just the good parts nor just the bad parts, however. I would be remiss to neglect either and everything in between.  

Revisiting everything doesn’t mean dwelling on everything, though, and I’ve discovered in the past year that I can choose what to hold onto and what to let go. So I can let go of my qualms with those who made my job harder, those who wronged those I love, those who believe in the Oxford comma. 

I can also hold on to the best friends I have and the best memories I’ve made. From production nights in the office, to Meme Mondays on Zoom, to conversations on Slack, to drives to In-N-Out, to trips to Louisiana, I have stories for a lifetime.  

I know I have friends for a lifetime, too:

Maia and Jordan, who made the paper (and this campus) feel like a home for the first time. I don’t know anyone else who would stay on Zoom until 6 a.m. to talk about vegetables and the AP Stylebook (#nthe forever). Thank you for answering all my mundane questions, for getting me through the pandemic and for sticking around during my managing editor term. I miss seeing our three signature hearts side by side, as well as all the random Slack reacts we assigned specific meanings.  

Mia, the best co-beat ever. I don’t know anyone else who loves gymnastics as much as I do and is as willing to go to Louisiana, Utah and Texas in the span of two months just to watch meets. Meet me in Paris next year?

Maria, the hostess with the mostest and the best boyfriend ever. I’ll forever treasure our midnight McDonald’s adventures (Big Mac pack?) and drives to the city screaming “I Ain’t Worried” on the Bay Bridge. Thank you for making the world our oyster with me. 

Annie, my favorite hire and copy chief trainee, my applied math bestie. I love getting dumplings with you and eating pizza rolls at 1 a.m. (even when I get sauce on my favorite tank top). Thank you for attending our night meetings in summer 2020 and helping carry Meme Mondays — your role in building the Daily Cal community is underrated. You’re who the STEM girlie in me wishes she was, and I can’t wait to watch you slay the house down at Disney. 

Jasper, the Lil J to my Big J, a nickname I’ve grown to tolerate. Thank you for taking a chance on me and always cheering me on. There’s no one I can thank more for my first job in professional media, and you gave me the confidence to join the sports department, one of my best decisions to date. And on the topic of letting things go, your summer 2020 Champions League articles are on that list. 

Connor, my rock and partner in crime for most, if not all, of 2021. I loved being a menace with you in budgets and prelims, and I would not have wanted to be managing editor with any other creative director. You have one of the most brilliant minds I know, and I’m privileged to have learned design from one of the best. Thank you for always being there, regardless of whether I’m complaining about a problem in a flat or something bigger. I feel very lucky knowing you’re on my team. 

Ryan, our ever-so-slightly problematic but very loveable staff rep. I never could have imagined freshman year when discovering our mutual friends from back home that I’d call you one of my best friends senior year. Thank you for bringing me into the sports department and for helping me get better at 8 Ball. You have one of the most promising careers in media, and I can’t wait to watch it continue. 

Bryan, my favorite gaslighter and the only person who has hopped more departments than I have. Between the two of us, though, we’ve pretty much caught them all. You’ve been a part of (and the driver of) so many of those memories for a lifetime. Thank you for being one of my biggest cheerleaders, for being an integral part of my support system, for my first Kip’s and Tap Haus experiences and for always being down for boba and Top Dog at 1 a.m. 

Sam, my best friend and Siamese twin. I’m not sure how we’re going to survive not spending every waking moment together, but I know we will. Thank you for loving me regardless of my contributions to this paper and for always reminding me that I’m worth more than what I can give. You’ve been there for me since we met at Poke Parlor and I made you call the police to ask about a car crash, and I cannot imagine a life without you by my side. 

In 2020, as I copy edited the graduating class’s goodbyes and thank-you’s, 2023 felt light-years away. I was just starting my journey at the Daily Cal, only a few words into my grad column tagline. Now, as I sign off on this column, tagline complete, I can say the journey was worth every bit.

Jocelyn Huang was the summer 2021 managing editor. She joined The Daily Californian in fall 2019 as a copy editor and was a deputy night editor in spring 2020 and the night editor in summer 2020. She served as the head of copy chiefs in fall 2020 and the deputy special issues editor, the sports copy chief trainer and a social media copy chief in spring 2021. She was a sports copy chief, night producer and editorial board member in fall 2021, the editorial hiring manager in spring 2022 and a layout designer from fall 2021 to fall 2022. She became a sports reporter in spring 2022, covering women’s gymnastics, men’s gymnastics and men’s swimming and diving. She is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics and linguistics, as well as a minor in data science.

Contact Jocelyn Huang at  or on Twitter


MAY 12, 2023