Thursday, April 3, 2008

Non-earth shattering revelations that everyone and their mother comes to.

My parents are moving out of my childhood abode in Medfield to pursue more urban pastures in JP. Coincidentally, their new condo is on the same street as the one on which Margaret's mother currently resides. This really produced few emotions in me, to be honest, other than being glad for my parents since they hate the suburbs, and a slight tinge of sadness that there would no longer be somewhere that I could go to sort of escape my current life and retreat back 12 years into my former self.

Well, last night kind of took care of that, as I realized that, even if we continue to own 62 High St., such was no longer possible. It really was, though, up until about Christmas I'd say, a place where I could go and kind of pretend that doing nothing but using an eliptical bike machine, eating hummus, and watching reruns of Top Chef was an acceptable way to live my life.... that I had no future goals or aspirations, jobs, papers, or anyone in my life that needed me for any reason. A calming, incubator-like way to live one's life for four days, a maddening, cosmology-shaking way to live it for twenty-four (i.e. winter break). Nonetheless, I remember mostly the former, and so when I was feeling a little fed up with getting run half-run-over by minivan taxis, the sound of the T horn, the creepy guy in College Convenience who undresses me with his eyes when I buy vitamin water, and symphony patron after symphony patron, I decided that a trip back to Medfield would be the quickest fix toward my much-needed Vacationland.

My mother picked me up at 6:30 outside my apartment, but we didn't get back to suburbia until about an hour later. My mother was hungry, and when my mother was hungry she is not quite from this planet. So we stopped at Thai world and split some appetizers and curries, and by the time we got back to my house, it was too dark for the anticipated nature walk, and my father was getting ready for bed so no voice practicing. So, I was able to watch a few episodes of Top Chef with my mother which was fun, as was going to dinner with her, but these activities are not quite site-specific. Furthermore, my room looked like a community theatre props and costumes storage closet. The last people to stay in there were actually Sally and Kaitlyn from Chamber Singers. Their thank-you card, apparently forgotten by my parents, was left on the floor next to the trundlebed, and I took a moment to feel bad that Sally had to sleep with her head one inch away from a broken air-conditioning unit. There are these three baskets in the corner of my room that contain pretty much everything I ever did in high school, from jazz choir to one-act directing to English projects to Amnesty International. I have a funny little habit of picking a thing out of the basket randomly, as if it were a big sloppy deck of cards, and jokingly deciding that the nature of said object is what I should do with my life. Sort of akin to the "where should I go on vacation?" game which involves the spinning globe. (Last night it was the sheet music for "I could have danced all night". I prefer to think that the answer to my dilemma was thusly dancing all night, and not playing Eliza Doolittle).

Anyhoo, I then settled down into my oddly dressed twin bed and did what I did what I always do when I'm home for a time ... reread some of my old diaries. After all, why else would I write them if not to provide myself with sensational reading, a la Ms. Gwendolyn Fairfax. Lately, I've been pouring through them for things that strike me as common themes and things that might help me decide what I should attempt to devote my life to at this point. Last night's leafings were no help. The diaries are consistently broken down into about 4 subjects: 1) Boys 2) Whatever theatre-type thing I was doing at the time 3) My weight/various diet issues 4) General angst at my parents and other children. So, among other observations, I noted that when I am singing I "control my experience", but also that "4 years ago I was too young to understand the symbolism of the fiddler in fidder on the roof [apparently by 8th grade I had gotten the hang of that] and that I needed to find more people that understood the quote, "If Wokoma came back now, he'd be so pissed off" by Sherman Alexie. It's pretty much the same now.

I realized that it was useless to go searching for the things I most enjoyed in my past. I enjoyed and was privileged enough to do many things. But I was never pressed and I never pressed myself to try to figure out which of these things might translate into a career and which would stay better as a hobby. Watching Top Chef last night, I found it funny that so many Americans cook but watch professionals do it on TV, so many Americans also play football, but watch professionals do it on TV. How does one in high school or college know how what one is doing will translate into a career, unless one goes to a career-focused college like Emerson or Northeastern .... who knows. I didn't. So here I am, realizing that the decision is up to me now, and I'll only become more confused if I rifle through the annals of my innermost thought from 8th grade.

Most of all, I realized that my Life is no longer something I can Escape. Which I think, ultimately, is good. I own it, and it has enough bells and whistles, however mildly pathetic, to constitute as My Own. I am invested in it and would be sad to see it go, ultimately. I can Relax, but I can't escape My Life.


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