It is I, a faux-literati and distressed gen z-er extraordinaire dedicated to transposing (read: preserving) my “uncensored”, “totally authentic” fleeting youthful escapades online. Think of this blog as a not-so-cool refrigerator which stores not-so-refreshing contents – just to preface, these blogs are those unsavoury contents.
Nevertheless I have come with a bounty of flagrant romance-filled tales; overly-simplistic expository pieces; and most importantly, melodramatic life advice in the form of uncomfortably-kitschy personal anecdotes.
Why? You ask. Isn’t the internet already deluged with a score of self-indulgent individuals pining for attention? Weaving elaborate tales? Doling out unsolicited advice? Claiming to have expertise on topics their only encounter with was a five-minute AJ+ video.
The answer: Yes, it is!
Yet, here I am – still, I know – a simulcrum of every blogger since 2010, hoping to experience some form of catharsis through the airing of my uninteresting, totally uninspiring thoughts – or at least amass a following the size of the populace of an island in the Pacific.
Anyways, aside from that. Back to what makes me undeniably disparate from all the other underwhelming content-pushers out there: my totally unique experiences. And before you click away, here I go:
So college starts in about just over a week. Wow, I know – totally unique! And since my emotions regarding its start vacillate between a valley-girl-shrieking, euphoria-infused high and a 2000s-emo-music-devotee low, I thought it best to share my apprehensions – because this is the internet and, like, we’re friends now, right?
Pause. My inability to concentrate for more than the length of an AsapSCIENCE video has derailed my train of thought. Where was I?
Yes, the start of college!
The over-avowed “Four best years of your life”. It is for this very reason, the inordinate expectations placed on the next four years of my life (the same period of time allotted to the unextraordinary four years of high school that finally came to an unextraordinary end this past spring), from which my toe-tightening, jaw-clenching, bowel-loosening anxieties arise. I mean not only is there the pressure to excel (or at the very least, get by) academically, but also to engage in a stupendous number of extracurricular activities, research endeavours, internships, and practically anything that will gild your future memories of college AND assure your future success.
Yes, success! Something my generation and the constantly-ridiculed generation anteceding mine, the millennials, have come to know is a precariously-tenuous, barely-existing destination. And to ensure that I can recline under the Ibiza-esque sunshine that is financial security post-college, I need to put in the work – right?
But what about fun? What about all the notable, or more accurately, notorious college parties that underscore the college experience? The night life, the endless romantic encounters with brawny, yet intellectual all-star athletes, and the Sisterhood-Of-The-Travelling-Pants camaraderie? What about the enjoyable, non-sweat-pants-clad experiences?
The pressure to concurrently indulge in the pleasures of college while keeping up academically and making substantial gains in career-related pursuits is a devastatingly crippling reality, especially for me: an anxiety-ridden, underachieving overachiever.
So that begs the question:
Do I succumb to the all-too-common trap of circumventing the rigidly-defined maze the characterizes the notion of the “Best four years of my life”? After all, the assertion that college represents the best days of a person’s life is a misguided statement; it undermines the verity that is: everybody experiences life differently; one person’s milestone is another’s roadblock – and that’s okay!
Or will I plot my own path – define the success of the next four years by way of adaptable, judicious expectations that I set for myself?
Perhaps the dichotomies within the college experience – the inexorable fraught, stress-filled nadirs, commas punctuating every high-spirited, quintessential college moment – are manifesting themselves in me in the form of chronic ambivalence. Perhaps the apprehension I feel now is due to my hyperfocused, borderline-obsessive ruminations about the nature of the college experience: What are my priorities? How do I define success? What will I major in? And ultimately, how will my college experience shape the rest of my time on this piece of space rock hurling through the ever-expansive cosmos?
Perhaps – Oh ma gawd! I just got an Instagram notification about some not-so-new, but all-of-a-sudden-trending social-justice issue. In the words of a groundbreaking boy genius whose zenith, truthfully, predated my time: