Tag Archives: millennials

Muses

Image

The larger meaning behind all the University Crushes pages is actually pretty endearing if you look beyond all of the misogynistic, yet hysterical comments. Peppered amongst uninhibited and profane suggestions, there are actually some people that appear to be seeking real emotional connections through anonymous posts of appreciation. Their proclamations of love are being met with a lash of criticism: you cannot possible know that you love someone that you do not interact with on a regular basis, or have even spoken to in a serious context. Love is the wrong word, but their value in our lives is indispensable. It’s exciting to not know these people that inexplicably appeal to our senses, and it’s comforting to admire them from afar. They remind me of the type of relationship I might possibly want one day through the way they comb their hair and banter with strangers. Crushes are like a commodity; they can be fetishized, and collected, and used for our own personal gains and enjoyment. Though never actualized, secret crushes are my favorite; you can’t ruin them because they are in your control. They don’t have the ability to be uprooted by wandering eyes or self-wallowing fears of commitment because the crush isn’t grounded in anything remotely real. Ideally, secret crushes don’t have a life outside of the world you created for them inside of your head.

Maybe the haters on these pages just don’t have an imagination. Shout-out to the muses that make our worlds just a little bit brighter, just by existing. There are some humans that you just like more than others, not in a stalkery way, in a completely functional, appreciative and distant way. They make the world a prettier place, and if we really knew them, they would likely show us demons that look a lot like ours. If I were to write a post, it would look something like this, only it wouldn’t be to anyone in Albany, or to anyone that even my closest friends would expect:

I couldn’t wait to walk away from something I knew I would miss. He scared me in a fiery, chaotic, wholesome, holistic way. I admired him for the books in his room and the words in his head, but mostly for the questions he asked. He forced me to explore a new metaphysical territory of myself in a mere 12 hours and I knew I had to go; maybe I’ll give him a hug when I see him this summer, but he’ll have no idea the kind of havoc we would bring upon the world if we wanted to.

The best part is the person could read this and not even know it was about him, which is perfect because then it wouldn’t be nearly as magical and ideal as I see it now.

Tagged , , , , ,

Image

You can’t be afraid to make the life you want yours. Self-advocacy is one of the toughest parts of growing up, but that’s no reason to not get what you want. The National Equality March posted this photo earlier this week and I can’t even begin to do justice on how inspirational this is on the policy level, to unite an entire group of people fighting for one cause. In our personal lives, we can take a few notes from what has become a full-fledged civil rights movement. You have to empower yourself to make the smallest step, even if you have to crawl an inch closer to what you want.

If you have a question that’s been nagging you, you need to ask it. There will never be a time that you’re ready. So speak up, get out there, and do at least something for the answers you need in life. This could mean changing something you know is currently an unjust, or maybe it’s simply closure. Time won’t answer those questions, and if they’re the types that replay in your head when you’re alone or hear old songs, they won’t answer themselves. If you’re afraid of damaging your pride, there are too many boring, one-dimensional people out there anyway.

Earlier this week, I woke up a little earlier than usual. Naturally, I made the choice to finish watching Silver Linings Playbook, instead of making sure I wouldn’t have to run to catch the bus downtown. At the end of the film, everything miraculously comes together for B. Coop’s character. He ends the film with this expository insight: “The world will break your heart ten ways to Sunday, that’s guaranteed, and I can’t begin to explain that, or the craziness inside myself and everybody else but guess what? Sunday is my favorite day again. I think of everything everyone did for me and I feel like a very lucky guy.” The world is going to break your heart, but the key to all of this is keeping your heart open to everyone who won’t. You have to realize that there are awful, soul-sucking people that will grab hold of you sometimes. If you keep your heart open to the people that will lift you above this, you’ll enjoy Sunday again.

Answers

Tagged , , , , , ,

Where will you be?

Image

If you could be any place in the world right now, where would you be? That’s a fairly easy question to answer: most of us would say right here. Why—because we like to be right, and if we admitted anywhere else, then we would have done something dreadfully wrong to not get what we want. Others would say that staying put was the most practical choice, even if the town we live in can’t provide us the same adventure it did as wide-eyed 18-year-olds, or for the first time we pranced around the city’s streets six years ago. One day, I will find myself in a new place with new people, and I find that only semi-comforting. I’d really just like to handpick individual people from my past and place them on an island to eat breakfast sandwiches and talk about great things, but that would be selfish.

The question I’m trying to land on is this: Is there anyone you’ve met that you would want to share your whole life with? The harder question to answer as we grow older: If you could have your own life and tag around in someone else’s life, whom would you choose? And would you be happy there? Do you just want a similar life that parallels theirs in terms of awesome? Or if you want to be around this person, would you one day sacrifice the life you have to fit those two together? I might be the only person that thinks of the gravity of these things.

I’ve been thinking about home a lot recently. Not the conventional meaning: the house I share with my roommates or even the home I grew up in, now my parents’ house, I guess. For most of us kids in our twenties, home has become something we constructed as we moved out of dorms, graduated college, and freely chose who we would tell our stories to when we walk in the door. The longer we spend out of our homes, the more distant they become. You can never step into the same river twice, and thus our past homes become something we preserve in our memories. The concept of home becomes this transient place, and our own happiness depends on our willingness to build our happiness with those we choose to be around. But, no pressure though.

Tagged , , , , ,

On job interviews

Are you most interesting on paper, or in person? A few days ago, I struggled with this question when I exited a job interview. If the employer really and truly knew me, would they want the real person I am, or my one page, black-and-white history?

I fastened the final button on my peacoat and stepped out into the morning air of downtown Albany. I looked at the clock, 11:40. A forty minute interview seems like more than enough time to share who you are, but the fact is, it never ever is.

Before arriving at the interview, I thought this job would be a simple, easy resume builder and an excuse to leave my comfortable retail life. This changed when I realized I was too incompetent to use the intercom system to enter the quaint residence turned office building. A middle-aged secretary led me upstairs, and offered me water, coffee, or tea. Once they offer you coffee, you know it’s an adult job.

After several painstaking minutes of looking busy without using my iPhone, another woman greeted me and directed me down the stairs and into the conference room. Out of politeness, I chose to situate myself three seats down on the left side, despite every inclination to sit at the head of the table. Had they been watching for leadership qualities, I may have unfortunately misrepresented myself.

The chairs were all adorned with the non-profit company’s emblem. A gold, circular image that I couldn’t make out against the black matte paint. As three other interviewers filled in on the other side of the long, narrow black table of the unofficial state building across from the Capitol building, I realized the gravity of this position. All I could think was, good call on the black blazer.

I’ve never had a traumatic interview experience. In fact, most of my interviews go quite well, though I am very mild-mannered and shy around new people. Especially if I don’t know exactly what they are looking for in me. For me (and most other people in their early 20’s), selling myself professionally is difficult because I am fresh in the working scene. There’s something fundamentally artificial about the job interview process, on both sides of the table. My interviewers probably wanted to know if I’m competent, independent, can arrive on time, etc. Instead, of answering these questions, I’m subject to handling the inevitable, “What is the quality you need to improve?” question.

One of the interviewers read my cover letter and resume in front of me as another described the company and their mission to improve education and society. I uneasily crossed my right leg over my leg to ensure that no one could see my 1-inch tattoo. There are many aspects of myself that are taboo in job interviews, but have little to no effect on my talents, success, and ambition. Things you can’t include on a resume: Tattoos, exciting trips you’ve went on, your connections to other professionals and visionaries, your title as an official whiskey taste tester, or how much of an asset you are to your friends and family…. The older I get, the more easily I can write on an index card the features of strangers that I meet and admire. It’s only my oldest and longest friends that I will meet up with, spend hours and days with, and have absolutely no idea or interest in what they do professionally. This whole sell-yourself idea is what makes many people avoid the whole thing. “Why don’t you grow up?” Suddenly, I can come up with a few great reasons.

At the close of the interview, I was handed a business card to contact them in case I came up with any questions other than the minuscule one I had posed earlier. It was only then that I felt I let a bit of my true personality show. I commented on the beauty of the architecture of the building, specifically that I didn’t expect it to be as cozy. The interviewer proceeded to show me exactly how cozy the working quarters are by giving me a brief tour of the office. After some friendly banter, she walked me to the door and I felt that I made a better impression than I did during the initial Q&A.

But despite all of this interview awkwardness, I still want the job. Crossing my fingers for a call tomorrow!

Tagged , , , ,