My head in this moment

On repeat: the chorus of “Your Eyes” by Rogue Wave

-Playing clarinet for over ten years has instilled a habit of following along with the melody of a recognized song either through my fingers as if I’m playing it by ear on the clarinet, in a normal location such as my tapping foot, or a really weird method like clenching or moving my jaw to the beat. I’m so weird.

That parallel feeling of pent-up frustration/energy with a bodily exhaustion.

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List: Wholly Great Albums

These albums were chosen based on immortal magic they possess. I am one to pick up the lyrics of songs rather quickly, so without some exceptionally fresh melodies and sounds, most songs are enjoyed and then sequestered away. Thus, it’s a joyful day when I find such an album!

“Bon Iver, Bon Iver” by Bon Iver

List: Dreamt-about Jobs

When I was younger:

  • Chef
  • Miner (thought I could keep gems I found)
  • Ballerina
  • Trucker
  • Canine opthomologist.

Now, at 21.4 years old:

  • Backup singer specializing in harmonizing
    • Preferred office: Driver’s seat of a zero emissions car that basically has a carnot engine (leaves the environment intact.) Environment: Anywhere worth exploring the roads and views.
  • Zumbathonner (must have great music and a wide age range of fellow zumbistas- love seeing older ladies dancing like no one’s watching!)
  • Travel/vacation blogger
  • Recipe taster
  • Evolutionary biologist who works both in a lab and outdoors
    • Utilizes GIS and spatial data
    • Makes a difference, especially in light of climate change

Milennials and Trust

I think a big reason behind the gargantuan rise of DIY (do-it-yourself crafts, repairs, cooking, publishing, etc.) is my generation’s lack of trust in our predecessors. Personally, I have qualms about putting my trust in the government. This is not to say that there aren’t good people in there- there are, as well as duds- but as a whole, I don’t feel comfortable letting that rusty machine control my life any more than I must let it.

While packaged dinners and pre-cooked meals may have been the joy of the 60’s, nowadays we are all on the lookout for what’s exactly in our food. We’ve learned that labels often mislead consumers, that added sugar winds up in everything from marinara sauce to hot dogs, and that genetically modified foods may pass from farm to eater without any notification (personally, I’m ambivalent about GMOs, but let’s not go into that.)

The Milennials have gathered baskets of advice from their parents about how to, well, be a functioning society member. While we do often heed that advice, we’re apt to jump into the internet and collect advice in a more big data analysis fashion. As a science-minded individual, I see great logic in this approach. However, someone who believes in the power of individual people and their experiences might find this offensive and dehumanizing.

I think DIY is the greatest thing ever. I’ve always loved crafts, recycling toilet paper tubes into who knows what, and of course, cooking. However, as I age, I notice my energy wavering and my free time plummeting. If I could devote hours of the day to cook for my family (it’d have to be more than just my parents, as it is at the moment)- meals as well as “the basics” like mayonnaise and butter (yes, a small farm is part of that utopia), I’d be thrilled. If I could afford to buy all the ingredients to make my own shampoo and face wash and toothpaste, I’d feel so content with the level of control over what is affecting my body. However, since I don’t have those luxuries, I have to find a way to balance out that need for control and how much I can spend on an organic peach. Luckily, there are lots of tools such as lists that explain which fruits and veg you really should buy organic and which aren’t (hint: delicate fruits like blueberries and peaches are better organic because you eat their thin skins while bananas and pineapples are okay not being organic because you peel off their exterior before enjoying them.) Whole Foods has a peanut butter blender in-store so you can know exactly what’s in that jar: un/salted, peanuts/almonds/whatever, just your level of chunkiness, etc.

Are we just being impressively responsible for inquiring about how we feed ourselves, or control freaks, or both?

Portlandia did a legendary sketch about a couple going out to dinner and asking a bajillion questions about the welfare of their soon-to-be-eaten chicken. You’ll love it.

So, where does that trust go? Ourselves? Does it just disappear?

“Me Poem” from seventh grade English class

Putting it in my blog so I can revisit it when I’m in the School of Life’s seventy seventh grade.

I am Sophie

A drop of life

In this infinitely vast world

I am a speck

.

I am a peaceful shade of blue

Easy-going

But in no time I turn to

A vibrant lime green

Eager to get going

Excited to be living

.

I am a sushi roll

A lot of personalities packed

Into one

Healthy and delicious

Exotic and special

.

I am the Beatles

Lots of different subjects

Peaceful

Oldie but goodie

.

I am Sophie

Ready to help

Full of love

Independent and proud

I am me

Pets

How wonderful it is that I can adopt an inchworm for an afternoon, then return it to its home in the grass.

How amazing and truly throught-provoking that I may purchase a succulent from a vendor, who has either nurtured the cactus from nothing, or hired someone else to do so. I may pay the equivalent of half an hour’s wages for a living thing. (Think about that: You work your whole life to buy a shelter for your family, but may shell out five dollars in exchange for a piece of genomic history that’s survived milennia.) Then, I may feed it whatever I please (mostly water, a few sips of selzer, and the occasional drop of tea dregs) and watch it extend its emerald tendrils extremely slowly (to the human eye… in geologic time, that plant grows faster than preteens) towards its benefactor, the sun.

Why does no one else freak out about the miracle of owning a cactus?! (Buzzfeed somewhat addresses this, but in the form of “let’s all get pet plants!”)

BotanicaLove.

The proposition that we, humans, are stewards of the Earth, and that we must take care of it, is a complex and loaded statement. In truth, we’ve only gathered up our unique Homo sapiens identity and asserted our humanity for a literal jiffy in regards to Time. It makes me think of a situation such as the process of raising a child. Throughout those eighteen years, they are influenced by everyone in that village who affected them. If the Earth is that child, I think humans and our parental influence could be equated in weight to the light pat on the back by the child’s dad’s friend’s insurance agent. In sum, we’re hardly apt to live up to this antiquated vision of humans tending for the planet. Adding in a second equation concerning climate change and all that influence is for another blog post. Relating the power of trees to a sibling or parent might be accurate, for instance.

Ownership is such an intense topic. Is it even real? Can you consider your pet hamster yours if you keep it alive? Or, if you’re more of a “hamsters give me a reason to live” person, does the hamster own you? Is it co-produced? Can anything ever be owned, especially living things? And now we get into deep territory. Let’s call it a night, you endive enthusiasts!

I really don’t know life at all.

This summer, I’ve developed greater appreciation for folk music icons like Joni Mitchell, this blog’s namesake. I’ve also been looking for a new home to deposit the massive list of perspectives and observations I regularly encounter. Finally, I’d like to posit this platform as a resource for future retrospection when I’m older and yearn to remember how it feels to be 21. So, to sum it up, this new blog is functioning as:

1. A typical log of my big ideas and opinions: Who’s inspiring me at the moment; Current dreams and aspirations; Current ratio of nostalgia and inpatience for college; Current method of eating cucumbers (cut up? Whole? With dip? It matters!)

2. A storehouse for lists I’d never write down but hope to remember (and never do), including “Things that cheer me up”, “favorite greeting card ideas”, “favorite movies” and so forth. That’s a quirk about me- I can never remember my favorite things.

3. A sort of “time capsule” with which I’ll try to secure some memories, feelings, and general reminders about what it’s like to be a young adult. I fear losing that power to relate to people of past ages. I hope this will help as well as provide triggers to vicariously guide me through these years again and again when I can only revisit them from a distance.