Home Away

The 20s are all about getting critical. Criticism, analysis and evaluation all have their purpose and when used properly and effectively, they're crucial to being cognoscente of not only what goes on around you but what role you play in all of it. Taking responsibility for the decisions you make is one of many signs of maturity. Deep down we all know our inner truths, some are just more willing to accept them than others. Time to find that home away, from home.

One of the biggest decisions you make in your early years as a young adult is if (that is if it's right for you) and where you'll attend college. Yeah, it's kind of a big deal, but after you've arrived and are in "the college experience" it's important to look back and check your motives. Why did I choose the school I attend? It's a question I get a lot, and at first I used to shrug it off, like I didn't really have an answer, but underneath it all I knew exactly why. It's taken this summer back at home to be able to confess my ulterior motives for heading way out of state. College, I think for a lot of people, serves as a refuge. It's a safe haven, and a place for you to call your own. I never thought that it would serve that purpose for me, what with my functionally dysfunctional family but otherwise a perfectly privileged life of suburban extravagance. But I'll tell you that every one has a secret, and every family has its problems, none of which are to be trivialized or trifled with. So why did I choose to fly away (literally and figuratively) from the great state of Ohio, the lap of luxury, custom made homes, imported cars, and platinum credit cards? The truth is simple. I'm selfish. Plain and simple, I'm a conceited, self-centered, and prideful person. My deadliest sin, without a doubt pride. Creating a home away is what we all do.
 was I the only person who paused at this moment to laugh at this immensely hilarious face made by Brian D?
Let me explain, college for me was my chance to finally stop playing the supporter. It was my time to think of myself first above others, take care of me, and figure out what I needed from life. It was my way of getting back at everyone, for overlooking, forgetting and sometimes ignoring me. When you're one of five kids, ridiculously independent/excessively resourceful, and your parents are busy catering to the needs of your siblings, extended family, church, and greater community along with work, you're not surprised when you are at not the primary concern in everyone's lives. In this way, college for me was saying essentially forget everyone else for once, and being concerned with the wants/needs of others and indulging in the most personal of feelings, hope and freedom. I hoped to create an entirely separate world where I was the sun, the thing and person everything and everyone else revolved around. I was free from the tyranny of plainly existing, and ushered into a world where I not only mattered but was a top priority. My college is just that, my college. It's nowhere near perfect (actually thoughts of regretting my decision to go there happens more than I care to admit) - probably any college would have done pretty well to satisfy my desire to be important, wanted and the protagonist of my own life story instead of some minor character, but I chose UVM for a reason. I am the center of my own universe (university) and so far away that I am nearly unaffected by the gravity of home. It's absolutely terrifying and totally exhilarating at the same time. Yeah I could spiral out of orbit at any time (please excuse these astronomical references but I'm on a roll), but I'm no longer a dark-sided moon or a minor asteroid belt. I am a force to be reckoned with, but forced to grow up and learn on my own (16 hour drives and no direct flights, trains or bus routes keep me practically isolated). Check me out on campus and chances are people know me or of me (dear gosh, the haughty attitude this all exudes is truly unsightly) and my involvement is definitely noticeable. In all honesty, that's what I wanted from college, to be noticed. Props to the Ohio fanbase, but when you're like me and driven by empathy, sacrifice, repression and emotion allow you to set aside you longings until a certain point where you're bold and choose yourself over everyone else. There's nothing wrong with it. Should I have stayed in-state to lower my expensive ass tuition & travel costs, maybe - do I care, not really. My parents gave me the choice to go anywhere (actually that's not true, my mother definitely wanted me to go anywhere closer, but VT was furthest and I got away with it) for any price, because education is that important - for that I'm grateful. I've made my home away.
vermont 2012 
When I went to orientation just after my high school graduation at the University of Vermont we had this session on diversity where this crazy lady who's keynote speech was fraught with vulgarities and crude humor (Dear Christian upbringing, that's one of those "close your ears moments" - can I get an amen). She made her point pretty well,  but there was this specific moment that let me know that I could attend UVM in peace. She brought up the words ghetto and slavery in a joke or something of sort in reference to diversity and understanding hardship, and in a room full of nearly all white people, no one turned to look at me. For the first time in my entire life, I blended in. No one made me feel out of place or tokenized. I was the only person looking around at everyone else. I was wholeheartedly astonished, and that was when I knew that was the place for me (fast forward two years later and if you've read my annual self-proclaimed "race/racism week" posts, you'll know that's not the actual case, but that's besides the point). That moment for me was the one that solidified environmentally friendly, hipster ridden, organic everything, excessively liberal Burlington, Vermont as my home away.

So my home away isn't exactly what I thought it'd be and realistically the friends and experiences I'll be savoring for the experience will be few and far between, but I'm content(remember you determine your own happiness and to never settle). In my time off from school you know I've been all over that MCAT studying (or running errands, cleaning, or doing stuff for school) but when I'm not I'm obsessing over the media as per usual. This week (aka since I posted last) I've seen the Lone Ranger and Video Game High School. So the Lone Ranger was definitely interesting. It was a box office disaster that was budgeted with sequel style money when the franchise possibility hadn't even been a safe bet. The movie however deserves more credit than it's received. The pacing is weird, and the quick fluctuations between campy humor and grave seriousness are jarring, but overall it's a summer adventure and I truly enjoyed Armie Hammer's performance, everyone else - left a little more to be desired, but generally the cast was sound. The movie has some really impressive shots of the wild west and like everyone else has said, the final action sequence is truly epic. The plot is actually clever and I, contrary to critic reviews, liked the deception of Johnny Depp's Tonto's narration of the story. Bottom line, it's worth seeing (but only for a matinee). Now, I also checked out Video Game High School aka VGHS and wow was I freaking impressed. From a Kickstarter campaign (as in the newest way for people to raise money for projects and causes like creating this series) to a live action masterpiece of truly amazing gamer-sized proportions, VGHS is awesome. It's what Halo: Forward Unto Dawn would have been if they actually took the video game battles to the next level with the added video game humor. It got cheesy at some parts (mainly the arcade portion, which seemed complete out of place or an unnecessarily long dream sequence) but the story has true heart even if it had that formulaic story timeline. If you play video games it's a must see, if you don't it probably loses a lot of it's power, but still definitely worth watching (it's on Netflix  as a movie; season 2 starts next week). Second to last, the Giver - one of my all time favorite books - is officially being made into a movie with Brenton Thwaites no less (congrats, I'm #teamAussie always) but his casting and the aging up of "Jonas" has people already pissed. I say give it a chance, maybe they'll combine with the companion books since the original is so short and subtle? Now lastly, Teen Wolf this week was just everything and more. Stiles and Scott's scene with the gasoline, flare and near teen suicide was so damn powerful and the episode was beautifully shot, scripted and actually creeped me out. Shoutout to Pretty Little Liars for bringing Mike back to give Aria a verbal smack down and for Emily and Spencer to mince words like we've all really wanted. That is all. Sorry, I just had to mention it all. Home away!
Pretty boy"Jennyyy.."

The 20s are all about making your home away from home. Only you know the right place for you to be. Choose for yourself and make your own life, your happiness depends on it. Dig down deep, search for your inner truth and don't just profess what you want out of lie. Make it come to life and let it be real for you. It's your home away.

My blog post question for the day is ... why did you choose your college? Oh you know, to just try something new and make my own place in the world, the usual.


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