…I was a seeker, a mover, a malcontent, and at times a stupid hell-raiser. I was never idle long enough to do much thinking, but I felt somehow that my instincts were right. I shared a vagrant optimism that some of us were making real progress, that we had taken an honest road, and that the best of us would inevitably make it over the top.
At the same time, I shared a dark suspicion that the life we were leading was a lost cause, that we were all actors, kidding ourselves along on a senseless odyssey. It was the tension between these two poles – a restless idealism on one hand and a sense of impending doom on the other – that kept me going.
-Hunter S. Thompson, The Rum Diaries
Change some of the tenses and I’d say that’s about right.
I write. I read. I should probably read more than I write, but some days I should probably write more than I read. I blog – obviously.
I work. Probably a little bit too much, but I’m young and I need the money. Sometimes I read or write while I work, usually about stuff relevant to the job at hand, but the odd LOLCat or piece of ridiculous news will creep its way onto my screen. And that’s where the sarcastic and [expletive deleted]-infused blog posts that you read from me come from.
I intern at MOCAD, where I do not claim to be an expert on contemporary art by any means. But I’ve researched artists and sat in the galleries enough to develop my own opinions on each work. If you ask me about them, I’ll tell you. If I ask you about them back after having told you, you’ll probably tell me what I told you. That doesn’t help you, so please don’t put me into that position unless it’s absolutely necessary.
When I grow up, I want to be _______________________. I haven’t quite figured it out yet, so don’t ask me.
I’m majoring in ___________________________. Don’t ask me about that either, because I’ll just tell you I’m getting a DFA in Shiny Things, Bright Colors and Hipster Studies with a double minor in Naptime and Blanket-Fort Engineering. [In case it isn’t apparent, I can neither confirm nor deny that I have any iota of professionalism in my entire existence – for time being though, I’d appreciate it if you were optimistic and assumed it’s latent.]
So why am I here? I think the better question is why wouldn’t I be here? Growing up, my parents hated cities, and Detroit was something like the eighth circle of Hell on their list. When I wanted to apply to CCS in high school, my mom shut it down saying that over her dead body I’d be going to school in Detroit. So now, as a quasi-adult, I can safely say that this is one of the most rebellious things I’ve ever done outside of dating that guy and staying out too late on school nights (yes, I was/am/will be boring).
What do I want to get out of being here? I guess the simple answer would be “Whatever I haven’t gotten out of anywhere else.” Grand Haven/Spring Lake – where I grew up – was boring, and Ann Arbor is a bubble. Detroit seems to be neither, but just due to the constraints of the program, we’ve all brought a bit of the Ann Arbor bubble-sphere with us. Some will be able to defy its boundaries more than others, but I don’t think anybody will be rid of it completely by April. So with that said, I believe the answer (as of now) is that I want to learn how to deflate the bubble a little bit, quit being such a pansy-ass tourist and enjoy what’s here rather than mourn (or glorify) what’s not.
Some days, it’s easier said than done, but in being here, at least I can say that I’m trying.
P.S. These are a few of my favorite things [on the internet, in no particular order]: Hyperbole and a Half, Toothpaste for Dinner, Hark, A Vagrant!, The Sartorialist, Man Repeller, Not Always Right (especially this one), Cracked, Gawker, The New York Times, Wreck & Salvage