In one minute: playing Blackbird on my guitar.
In one hour: watching 500 Days of Summer and planning my schedule of classes until I graduate.
In one day: eating chicken milanese with my roommate tonight and then Diddy Riese tonight with a friend.
In one week: Taking a southbound train home to San Diego all by myself.
In one fortnight: Practicing the harmonica and ukulele that I’ll bring back from home!
In one month: Spring break! The end of my Milton class!
In one year: (almost) Earning my bachelors degree from UCLA.
In ten years: Ye gods. A mortgage? Grim death? I’ll hope for a husband who says “bless you” when I sneeze and children with cork guns.
Zaire: Damn, I gotta get to Sproul to get a new key. At least losing your key here isn’t as bad as losing it in the real world.
Me: Honey, I’m sorry to tell you this, but this is the real world.
Zaire: No. No it’s not.
Me: Yes it is.
Zaire: No it’s not.
Me: I think we’re not understanding each oth…
Hello, midterms. How lovely of you to stop by.
Right now I’m sitting in UCLA’s biggest library in a tiny cubicle waiting for my next class to start in forty minutes. Not only am I wearing the exact outfit I wore yesterday, but I am also wearing mix-matched socks and for lunch I ate an organic vegan sandwich and bought a water bottle made out of plant-based plastic that’s 100% recyclable. I don’t really know who I am today, but I do know that I spent five minutes in class today talking about how I want to build an Earthship and live in a village in Arizona. Maybe you didn’t know this about me, but I’ve got a lot of hippy in me. I once had a dream that I named my first born child Harmonicus.
In any event, here I am on a murky Tuesday afternoon. The sky looks like it would if you were to lie in the bottom of a sink full of soapy dishes and look up. I really should be reading Lycidas for my midterm next week or working on my paper due tomorrow that is only half finished [if that] but it seems much more important to me to do exactly not those things. I’ve been really struggling with the concept of time lately. See, I’ve spent the last week fretting about the paper due tomorrow, and all of that time spent worrying has got me nowhere. I’ll worry worry worry, and then all of a sudden I will realize that no, I’ve got all kinds of time. All I have to do with my life right now is go to class, come back to my dorm room and do work. I don’t have a job or an internship or any other obligation except schoolwork right now, and compared to people taking twenty units with a job and an internship and an off campus apartment, I should have loads of time. For me, it’s got to be a problem of perspective. Sitting at my desk in my room, all I can think about is how much I have left to do, how tired I am, how I have no time left, how it’s all about me me me. The realistic me wants to shake myself and shout, you stupid girl, wake up! You can do everything you need to do even when you think it’s impossible, when have you ever not turned in a paper half finished because you had no time? So far my track record in school has proven that I’ve been able to accomplish much worse under much worse conditions before and emerged triumphant, why is it so easy to forget that? Why is it so tempting to give in to your own shortcomings and forget that you can, in fact, do it?
These are just some thoughts that are racing through my head lately. I am convinced that being a student in college has got to be one of the most stressful and nerve wracking times of your life, but somehow everyone seems to make it out in the end. As my dad always says, you’ve just got to keep your eye on the prize and hold on.
I’m also going to spend a lot of time listening to the Twelfth Street Rag by Pee Wee Hunt.
Right now I’m sitting under the covers on my parent’s bed eating chocolate kisses and making my life list. After a week of building blanket forts in my dorm room and refusing to eat or leave my fort until the world seemed like a less scary and sinister place, I am very happy to be in a place full of people who understand me and call me family.
Do you know who Coconut Records is? If you do, then you and I are going to be great friends. It’s Jason Schwartzman’s band (think Wes Andersen), and he does a song called Summer Day, and I’ve been singing it all day. This I can attribute to the fact that it is rainy rainy rainy right now in Los Angeles and having come from San Diego I get pretty freakin jazzed about rain. I know that getting psyched about blustery and whipping rain is not ordinary, and I’ve dealt with people my whole life telling me I’m crazy for loving rain so much. But I can’t help it, I love it, every part. The water-logged shoes, the foot of wet pant legs, the pink cheeks and frizzy hair, it’s all part of it. Even when you walk twenty minutes to class in the pouring rain and half freeze only to walk into your building to be greeted with Jamaica-in-the-summertime humidity and the heater turned on full blast – that pink cheeked sweatiness is wonderful. One day I’ll probably spend a significant portion of time some place where it rains too much and I’ll maybe tire of it then, but I strive to live in the present, and for now I in love with the rain.
Now listen to that song. It has hardly anything to do with actual rain, but it’s on my rainy day playlist and I think its glorious.