May 7, 2008

Regular posts will start again after May 30th. In the meantime, here is my senior article for my school newspaper:

The question “What do you want to do with your life?” plagues me not because I do not possess an answer; rather, I do not have an answer that others understand.

How do I explain that I want to live a dumpster diving, train hopping, protein-deficient, thrift-store buying, nomadic existence? How can I avoid strange looks when I say possible careers include a bike messenger or crazier, someone who just wants to write?

I dream of the day when I can have tattoos, and my job will not require me to cover them up with a button down, collared shirt. I dream of the day where I can write and not have a second job just to get by. I dream of affording health care.

Looking toward the future, I want to live passionately and take my hobbies seriously. I want to attack everything as an art form, disregarding back ups. I want to remain idealistic even when I have to pay taxes.

So come time for college, I am about to test my ideologies and my idealistic nature, but I am scared that I will crumble when given the task of transforming theory into reality. At least I recognize this fear but head straight toward this prospective risk regardless.

I fear that as most grow up, the real world succeeds in making us realists. It is a silent epidemic. It does not destroy the environment or wipe out the masses but it allows a little bit of the unrealistic child in us to become forgotten.

Aaron Cometbus, an underground author, spends his life in poverty to pursue his craft, saying, “It’s too easy to just let yourself be defeated. To wallow in the comfort of suffering. To let your self-destructive tendencies become your whole life. To retreat and hide from the world you could have taken by storm. To keep the fruits of creativity to yourself and let them rot on the vine. It’s too easy to say you’re a loser and think there’s something noble about failure.”

As Cometbus suggests, most fail because it is too arduous a task to even try. Yet, present day society thrives on self-determination. Even though the capitalist system has flaws, as all do, its major strength is that capitalist theory is in accordance with the DIY ethos I like so much. Whatever you want to do, work hard and do it.

As a senior, I’m now reflecting on the past just as much as I’m romanticizing about the future. The last four years have been an incongruent mix of spending time enveloped in a fictional world and spending reality with my best friends, purposely not taking life seriously; a mix between reflecting on life and experiencing it; a mix between having so much to say and not verbally being able to express myself; a mix between fighting personal demons and refusing to apologize for who I am.

Using the newspaper as forum to express myself for two years, I still do not know how much of my writing is read and how much is looked over by the student body. Regrettably, I know that in past attempts to bring light on certain issues, I have preached when that really has not been my objective. Thus, I hope this piece does not hold the same tone. This senior article is merely my personal statement to look back on when a pile of rejection letters collect on my own desk, an inevitable fate for an inspiring writer.

My only advice is this: Live simply. Brush your teeth. Wander with a purpose.

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One Response to “”

  1. Jacob said

    Great writing as always.

    Don’t give up on your idealism; once gone, it’s difficult to reclaim.

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