Thursday, 18 April 2013

The takeover/ The sweeping insensitivity of this still life

3 Weeks.
3 Graduations.
2 of them mine.
Now it is all done with : no more waiting anxiously to walk across a stage for a full 20 seconds; no more balancing your hat precariously because it has chosen this (!!!) moment to slowly slide from your head; no more photographs in with hundreds of others just like you in the background.
Now there is nothing I actually have to do, to attend, hah, not even community patrol to drive.

A friend of mine posted a photo of himself five years ago and now, stating that although he felt much the same, he also didn't. And that he still wanted the same things.

In one month I'll be 25, and damn, this quarterlifecrisis thing has hit me over the head with a baseball bat before kicking me in the stomach a few times and then proceeding to steal one of my motherfucking kidneys. It has been nice enough to leave me my other kidney, because, you know, life goes on, and I should just man up. For a while there I felt like Charlie the unicorn heading to candy mountain: everyone asking you stuff and you're all miserable in your blanket of self-pity and then, in the end, it is all dreadful in any case.

But then, somehow, everything got better. I sort of might have a sort of job. I might still leave to teach English somewhere. I might still apply for Masters programs starting in the fall (well, northern autumn, southern spring). I might do nothing but Coursera courses this year. I might just do anything I want. There is no more findaman-marry-buyadog-buyahouse-havechildren-workworkwork-die. Perhaps that, and not the Internet or gay marriage or black presidents or female chancellors or whatever you like, is the fundamental change of the 21st century: the "knowledge generation" has the option of opting out. We (not all, of course) are choosing jobs we love and fulfil us, not work that pays the bills. Or ideally it should be so.

I am fortunate enough to have a mother who says I can still stay at home. I am equally fortunate to have chosen a degree I enjoyed very much, and where I was sure I was heading in the right direction somehow.

And I am fortunate to know how to write. This might seem trivial, I mean, EVERYONE can write. With millions of blogs/Twitter accounts/Pinterest/etc. everyone has a platform from which to promote their writing. However, an actual talent for writing is still a skill. Look, I very much doubt what I write and the words I choose and the self-obsessiveness that a blog seems to require. In order to write about your life constantly you have to admit to a degree of narcissism, but you also need to see the light and the dark in what you write. I went to this spoken poetry event, and it seemed as though everyone believed their poems to be excellent, even when they weren't. Nevertheless, it is easy for me to criticise because I am an uncourageous audience member, not daring to speak the words I dare to write.

But after having read the submissions some of my peers have made to one of the Coursera courses, writing well should be one one of those things you mention when the interviewer asks you about your strengths, because it is something to be proud of. The ability to structure an essay well, to spell correctly and to bring across an argument without blabbering on forever is admirable because not everyone can write, well, well.

And that has been enough to stop the lull in my life. Enough with this "meh"-feeling.
Writing. Writing. Writing.
And moving on.

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