Normal: What even is that?

I don’t think I’ll ever have the “quintessential college experience” whatever that may be. It just won’t happen. I’ve had the startling realization and have come to terms with it. It’s fine. Kind of. Sort of. Maybe?

I’m into my third year of college. I am now a junior in college. What even is that? When did this happen? Who decided I was old enough / mature enough / smart enough to get this far? I want to go back to elementary school with its coloring, its book reports, its multiplication tables. Instead I have to endure digital media projects, analytical essays, and statistics. Not fair.

But I have noticed, of late, that my college experience isn’t on par with those of most of my friends from home. Is it because I went out of state? I went to a private school? I’m on an urban campus? I didn’t rush? I don’t know if I’ll ever be certain, but I know some of what I’m missing.

I’ll never go to a college football game because my school doesn’t have a football team. I won’t get to tailgate outside our stadium, because we don’t have a stadium, let alone cars. I’ll never get to enjoy porch drinking, because there are no houses on campus, excluding the tiny town-houses that have no porches – just stoops. I’ll never attend, at least as an undergrad, a university with a male population of which the majority are heterosexual. (Yes, I’m including my study abroad university in that. That’s one thing they don’t advertise that in the guidebooks, let me tell you.)

But it’s more than that. It’s also the fact that I didn’t get to drink PBR or play beer pong until I was hanging out with my brother over summer vacation. Whether that’s because there doesn’t seem to be room for beer pong at school or kids tend to drink liquor, I can’t be certain. I never shotgunned a beer until hanging out with my summer coworkers because, on the off chance we have beer at school, it sure as hell doesn’t come from a can.

What else am I missing out on? Is it because of where I go, or because of who I am and whom I chose to hang out with? If you have any insights, send ’em my way.

Not that I don’t enjoy my college experience; I do. For the most part. GW has its positives: the DC location, dorms down the street from the White House, school-year internships on the Hill, awesome authors and press secretaries and politicians that speak on campus. It can be wonderful, of course, it just doesn’t strike me as conventional, typical, or dare I say it, normal. Maybe when I get back to GW I’ll found a beer-pong league and sponsored flip-cup tournaments? At the very least I’ll take a road trip to Athens, Ohio to enjoy the Spring festivals. I’ll take normalcy, whatever that may be, wherever I can get it.

Clocks slay time… only when the clock stops does time come to life.

Another unproductive day. I woke up late and spent most of the time contemplating the dream I had last night and life at college. Sometimes it feels like I’m still waiting for the whole college experience to begin. It’s not that I’m not happy with my time at GW, it’s just that it doesn’t necessarily feel like the most typical, cliche version of events.

Anne and I bonded today, talking about our lives. It was a nice talk. I realized that I tend to be a pretty serious person. Not that I’m never goofy, but I don’t bring barrels of levity to every situation, either. I dearly love to laugh, but I don’t feel like I do it as often as I’d like. I’ve noticed in the last few weeks that I’m very fixated on my future instead of the now. I also tend to spend some time reminiscing. I don’t know how to better interact with the now, but it’s always going to be now, with my future passing by. Does that make any sense? I guess I need to work on seizing the day, taking the bull by the horns, carpe diem, yadda yadda yadda. My life just seems too busy to find time to change – what with classes, work and interning. But before I can change my habits, I need to figure out how. Next semester will be a more freeing time, what with no internship to contend with. On the whole, I’m content – I’m just not always happy. The spring will be a nice change of pace – I’ll have some more time for me.

The big issue I tend to wrestle with is finding my niche here at school. I have friends and I hang out with them a lot, but I still find it hard to beat my occasional reclusive behavior. I’m always harried by time. I feel like Quentin Compson, but, you know, without the incest and suicidal tendencies.

Maybe that’s the heart of the issue there. I don’t have my time to read – to completely absorb myself inside another life, to bear their burdens instead of mine for awhile. I’ll work on some homework, finish watching the Bama game, and give my current hero, Winston Smith some time to come alive. And maybe inspiration will strike and I’ll be able to work on my writing for a while. If only I had a fireplace or a beautiful old library…

I Dreamed a Dream

Aaaah! I did so much today! Not really, but it seems like it!!!

So, I went to Congressman’s office today, like normal, and it was fairly straightforward. Sorted some mail, forwarded some faxes, saw some Air Force officers (in their DRESS BLUES!!! Do you know how much I love Air Force dress blues, ’cause it’s a lot. And, yes, that appreciation can be blamed on Stargate SG-1.) Hmdmdm. Oh, I went to a hearing that Congressman was chairing about mental health and suicide rates in veterans and there were a bunch of neuro-scientists there. Oh, yeah, and Patrick KENNEDY!!! And Walter Jones from North Carolina. But still, I was in the same room as a Kennedy (Unfortunately dubbed the “ugly duckling Kennedy by friend.)!!!

Most importantly, however, is the fact that I drafted a statement today. No matter that it was about arthritis. No matter that a lot of the writing was rewording a previously written response to constituents on the subject. No matter that I only had to weave in information about the bill itself. I WROTE A STATEMENT FOR THE CONGRESSMAN TO READ ON THE FLOOR OF THE SENATE!!!! This is officially my first foray into political speechwriting. I really wanted to share the news.

On a sadder note, housing confiscated the extension cord that runs from my wall outlet over the door to my power strip. I now have no access to my tv, vcr, or printer. The cable for the tv that was strung between bedrooms, however, seemed to have been perfectly acceptable. So it goes. I’ll get a surge protected extension cord tomorrow. After my Arabic test that involves drawing pictures of crocodiles. Ain’t college grand?

Happy Anne-iversary

You may not believe it (I sure as heck don’t), but today marks the one year anniversary of my blog’s creation. Where has the time gone? In the past year, I’ve had a lot of new experiences, including:

  • living away from home for the first time
  • completing my first year of college
  • going to a party with alcohol
  • trying hookah
  • tweeted
  • gone camping
  • traveled by myself (by air and train)
  • interned
  • attempted to learn Arabic
  • mastered the Metro
  • committed myself to studying abroad
  • gone to New York City
  • survived snowpocalypse
  • auditioned for two tv shows (Skins & Jeopardy)
  • entered my last year of teenager-dom
  • gained confidence
  • made friends
  • solidified my plans for world domination – er, uh, I mean what I want to do with my life.

The tastiest ice cream is the hardest to scoop.

I didn’t fall off the face of the earth, I just had to deal with summer. All those hazy, crazy, not-so-lazy days of summer. Although it’s not really true, it feels like all I did this summer was work. I split my time between the overheated, overcrowded, always humid town pool (more affectionately known as BVFAC [pronounced biv-fac]) and the chilly confines of Dennis Kucinich’s district office. Six days a week I worked – equating to a 40 hour work week. I only got paid for 24 of those hours. But, on the upside, my experiences reinforced the fact that I never wish to work for the food service industry after I have graduated from college (with the obvious exception of Books & Pies) nor do I want to work in a Congressional District office. While I genuinely liked the people I worked with, I learned that the overwhelming amount of casework and the focus on social work is really not for me.

But, alas, now I’m done with my vacation home and have settled, once again, into my collegiate life. I have said goodbye (for now) to BVFAC and the District Staff. But Molly, you may ask, won’t you miss BVFAC? Well, I must confess I will. Not the long, tedious hours or the squelching humidity, but I will miss our bees. That’s right: bees. We would capture them in clear plastic cups, give them a little bit of slushy mix to enjoy, punch a few airholes and KABLAM! BVFAC pets. They even got names. Let’s see: we had the Mowry siblings: Tia, Tamara [sic] and TJ, then we had the cast of Doug: Doug Funny, Patti Mayonaise, and Skeeter, then, to round it out, we had (Hey) Arnold, Helga, Spinelli, Zach Morris and Screech. It was a throwback to the 1990’s heyday of children’s television programming.

But now, at school, I have other, arguably more exciting, things to look forward to. I’m looking forward to seeing Jimmy Carter in September, have already purchased my ticket to see Jimmy Fallon in October, and absolutely cannot wait for Sarah Vowell to come to campus in November. There are lots of things to look forward to, I suppose.

That wasn’t flying, that was falling with style!

My mother assured me when I got home from work tonight that I’d be rich by the time I was twenty. Seeing as how that’s only seven months away, I don’t think that’ll be the case. Twenty-five, maybe. See, it’s just that right now, I’m work’s bitch [and while mom assures me that the grammar there is not correct, the apostrophe is, because “you are the bitch in work’s possession”]. Seriously, I’m putting in 40 hour weeks stretched over six days. Four days a week, I am Molly, concession stand attendant to BVFAC patrons. Two days a week, I am Molly, congressional intern. It’s exhausting, I tell you. And sometimes, downright depressing (especially considering the fact that I only get paid for 24 hours of my work week).

Sometimes, I have to admit, feelings of inadequacy can sneak up – especially when I read news stories about kids climbing Mt. Everest and creating philanthropic organizations. But, though I haven’t done anything profound or really noteworthy, I have big plans. One of those, aside from being co-owner of Spines & Crusts (obviously), is being a White House speechwriter. And, man, if I play my cards right, look at what I could be making: www.whitehouse.gov

What will I do with all the money I intend to amass over the next few decades? Well, get a couple of residences. You know, DC townhouse, manor house in England, and a fishing cabin in either Alabama or Minnesota (I’ve got time to decide, but dad’s pulling for Alabama). But, maybe my real estate purchases will result in something a little more large-scale. Here’s what I’m talking about: an entire freaking village! And yes, you did read that right. I. Can’t. Wait.

“If I could recruit two more dollars…”

During the never-ending wait for Toy Story 3, amid all of the late night Denny’s runs and despite the grueling hours I put in at the lovely pool (what up, BVFAC?) I still find time to enjoy politics. I started my internship today at the lovely office of Congressman Dennis Kucinich. It was a blast. Yeah, some of the things I was tasked with were menial, but it was never boring. The people there are fun and intelligent and I’ve learned a lot already. I genuinely like the staffers and I’m getting the hang of phoning up agencies (oh, hello FEMA). But sometimes the stories you hear at the office aren’t quite as funny as the ones you hear once you’re home. (Generally speaking, they’re less confidential, too.) Case in point: I get home last night and what does mom have to show me right off the bat: FAVS!!!The Time Obama's Hottie Speechwriter Played Shirtless Beer Pong With His Bros

Don’t even try to tell me that you don’t remember him.

And that great little nugget of gold led me to this, which is, to me, almost more exciting. Plus, it reminds me of the great little pictorial display of Obama Admin. staffers hanging from Anne’s dorm room walls.  Oh, politics. You have yet to bore me to tears.