As a long, intensive, work-filled school year comes to a close—as graduation nears, as vacation approaches—the weather isn’t the only thing that tends to warm. Nostalgia takes over. Hatchets are buried. Green Day’s “Time of Your Life” takes on special meaning. And you find yourself, not knowing what’s possessed you, scrawling “Don’t ever change!” in the yearbook of Ricky, that guy from homeroom who sat in the back and kept to himself and who you might have exchanged three words with over the course of your shared educational experience.

Because, when that experience comes to an end, the only thing that really seems to matter is that it was shared.

Well. This morning, Barack Obama pretty much signed the yearbook of his traveling press corps. AFP reports,

Democrat Barack Obama made a rare foray to the press section of his campaign plane early Tuesday — election day — to thank reporters for accompanying him on his grueling 21-month ride.

Also thanking the media for expressions of condolence following the death of his grandmother, Obama acknowledged there had been “sometimes friction” between the campaign and the press.

“But you guys have been gracious and understanding,” he said, following conservative criticism of the press for its coverage of Obama, as his plane prepared to depart after a huge rally in Virginia for Chicago.

“It’s been a good long ride with all of you,” the Illinois senator said. “Whatever happens tomorrow (Tuesday) it’s going to be extraordinary and you guys have shared this process with us.”
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Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.