Almost 12 months since I began writing for the Reporter, I am sitting in a hotel room in an uncharacteristically rainy Baltimore with more luggage than I will need for college beside me, feeling full of what I can’t wait to nostalgically describe as something like “pre-college naivete” or “oblivious innocence.”
This morning, I drove to Redmond Town Center to meet a friend for lunch. On my way there, I had listened to musicians like Jason Mraz, Colbie Caillat, Chris Brown and Coldplay on the radio, all the while thinking that I really ought to be listening to NPR and catching up on political news instead. When finally I mustered the willpower to leave Mraz behind, I found that NPR was also playing music; and what’s the point of listening to music on NPR when I can listen to whichever music I want? Goodbye NPR jazz, hello Mraz.
E-mailing is first on the continuum of technological intimacy. Next comes instant messenger, then texting and, finally, the telephone. My generation grew up on communication technology; we develop thumb problems from texting and we feel like we’re missing something as essential as underwear when we go out without our cell phones. Anyone who went to junior high since the advent of the Internet and instant messenger understands the continuum: when you’ve been texting or IM-ing another 13-year-old of the opposite sex and suddenly he or she wants to call you, that’s a big leap.
I don’t eat burgers, but this summer I am working at a burger joint. The irony of this is a small price to pay for the sake of earning my own money and having the experience of being a waitress, which thus far has taught me how to deal with frustrated customers, split tips and mop a floor — and, ultimately, how to be an adult.
On June 10, I graduated from high school. That night, I slept a great deal more than I have any night this year, and today I started my new job working at a restaurant in downtown Kirkland. Then I missed a deadline. More specifically, I missed my deadline for this column. This is a deadline I have known about weeks in advance, which I had both written down in my planner and on my 1-month calendar. Still, in my newly graduated and unanchored state, I managed to completely forget about it.
I’m going to be the girl who falls at graduation. I have imagined myself falling so many times that at this point it is inevitable; I have undoubtedly engaged my muscle-memory by sheer force of imagination. Every time I picture myself falling, the probability of its occurrence inches closer to one.
Because I love my prefrontal cortex, because I have an inordinate amount of pride and for this reason don’t like to make a fool of myself in front of other people, and because it’s illegal, I don’t drink.