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Posts tagged ‘school’

An Awkward Realization

Hey guys, it has been quite a year. Launching new blogs, failed collaborations, and a lot more learning about people. I’m really not complaining, it has been exciting stuff.

Living at “the heart of Silicon Valley” really is what it sounds like. I’m currently sitting at a coffee shop in some random part of San Jose, California, listening to a song called “Return to Darden Road” (Listen on Spotify: Beta Radio) where I just witnessed an interview of three people who were investing on a new app start up described as “the Netflix of … uhh” so basically its some type of service that gives you an unlimited access pass to something you look at and think to yourself “hmm, but I’m only going to use it once..” probably ties. Or boxers?

As much as I tried to be a part of this place, it just doesn’t fit me. Like the shoe isn’t even a left or a right one, its just like.. a high heel or something that I’m like, yeah there’s no way I’m going to wear this. I was supposed to be working on this engineering degree, only to discover that the anxiety I felt all of these years was because I was in the wrong field of study. Or maybe in the wrong place. Or maybe just in the wrong time period.

But you see, I only discovered this after trying things out, and leaving things and places and people. There have been many people in my life that have told me about finding your passion, seeking what you like… I’ve taken actual courses (two of them) titled something like, Career Exploration and Success, that were supposed to help me decide on what to study or where to lead my life. They were okay, I guess. But I left. I went to try out things at the other side of the country. It turns out that few things can actually have such an impact on your life enough to make you want to redirect your ship. A single conversation with somebody can trigger past memories of experiences or move you inside so much that you crave learning more about the subject, and eventually you realize that you’re in love with it and want nothing more. Sometimes its a series of them, or something that has deeply affected you or a loved one. The best doctors that I’ve read about or met did not become doctors because their parents told them to, or because they didn’t know what they wanted to so they randomly chose to go to medical school, they wanted it more than anything, for their own reasons.

So I made a decision to try things out for myself. But I have a question, please someone answer me on here: Do you know what you want to do? If so, how did you discover it?

In a conversation with my sister, I thought of something when she said “you should do what you want to do.” In my mind, I made a little chart divided into three sections. In the first one, you have people who know what they want to do, but don’t know how to get there. In the second one, you have the people who know what they want, and know how to get there (that seems like a good place to me), and then the third, you have the awkward people like me, who don’t know what they want and can’t even figure out how to find out what they want. And we like to complain, ooh man, do we enjoy it! From things like: there are too many choices, I have too many ideas, I feel like I’m running out of time, there aren’t any people who can help me, I don’t even know how I would get there, it doesn’t pay enough, consumerism sucks, freakin’ republicans, etc.

I’ve made some pretty crazy decisions to relocate and go into places completely on my own. My rental history is long, and I have some roommate stories to talk about. I’ve spent nights in an abandoned home, lived in a dude’s office space, in my own beachside condo (ahh, pooping with the door open is a luxury, my friends!), chased by a prostitute, waited late for a storm to pass in an animal preservation center with alligators, nearly peed myself by eating the spiciest curry ever, gotten stuck in the sand in the middle of nowhere, and finally got to eat a sandwich on a rooftop. All of this without a stable job… and I think this is what I like. So.. uh, am I supposed to be a hippy? I mean, I already have a guitar..

Being a little more realistic, though, I do have a talent for patterns and numbers. The idea of economics and the interrelationships of people, money and natural resources interest me, but then again so does writing, storytelling, and playing music. I wish I could’ve become a medical practitioner of some sort but then I witnessed the power that money has over medical professionals when it comes to prescribing medicine. As you can tell, I’ve had this discussion with myself many times already. It went from a never-ending frustration, to a plan to search. I’ll be moving once more, and I will have to gain some ammo in the form of reasons and excuses to diffuse the curiosity of those around me. I’ll need to strengthen up these walls of mine to be able to take the criticism and the questions of doubt from others.

So what is it? Is it really just a matter of picking something and going for it? Think of your biggest accomplishment ever and then remind yourself of that initial idea that got you there. Was it writing a book, or winning an award? Obtaining a diploma? Landing that high-paying job? What was your drive?

Sorry I made it awkward, guys.


108. Awkward Moments in Middle School

..Middle school has its awkward moments.

The bell buzzed.

I guess it can no longer be called a bell if it doesn’t ring, but I’m so used to the bell at Glazier Elementary that it still feels strange to call that thing a buzzer. Instead of ringing for recess, it will buzz for “nutrition”. It even sounds boring that way. Middle school will be different. We no longer have just one principal and support staff, but a principal and two assistant principals plus a staff that all look equally scary.

“That bell isn’t for us,” some tall kid said, who apparently still had the whole buzzer and bell thing confused, “our classes start at 8:20 A.M.”

“Thanks man,” I responded, “but I still have to find the HR, what ever that is.”

“I think it stands for home room, my older brother says that we will have more than one teacher so I guess that’s where we will meet first,” he said, “I got room 196, you?”

“196, I guess we’re in the same room.”

And so my first day in middle school started. We found the home room, had our dumb introductions (name, what school you come from and an interesting fact about yourself), broke in our brand new notebooks and pencils, and went through the usual uncomfortable first day stuff. I had absolutely no idea about the awkward moments waiting to happen in the next three years of middle school.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that I was not in elementary school anymore. A question many of us had but did not dare to ask was “where the heck is the playground?” all we saw was a bunch of benches and other areas to sit. Were they expecting us to sit around and actually talk to each other? It reminded me of how strange it was to think that older people sat around just listening to music. At least we weren’t being pressured into eating the horrible cafeteria lunches anymore. All the cool kids didn’t eat cafeteria lunch. There were many other differences, such as the introduction of school security, increased seriousness in the word detention, and the creation of cliques. I remember asking for cooler-looking underwear since I would be changing in and out of gym clothes in front of other kids. And it all went crazy from there.

You see, middle school is supposed to be filled with awkward moments. There are kids that still haven’t hit their growth spurt, so you end up with a random assortment of short and tall kids. You cannot tell the difference between a sixth grader and an eighth grader just by looking at their height. Some kids are freaking out because of the first signs of pimples. Some girls actually have boobs now and some are flat out ..well, flat. Some guys have the whole deep voice thing going, some sound comically feminine, and others are still experiencing heavy voice cracking. Everyone goes through a bunch of changes in their bodies, some more embarrassing and more noticeable than others.

Suddenly the opposite sex doesn’t seem that bad, but the thought of a boyfriend or girlfriend seems way too serious for your age. Of course, there are those exceptions out there that claim to already have had 4 girlfriends and are not afraid to write love letters and ask someone out to the dances where girls stand near one wall, and the guys stand by the opposite one.  For the first time ever, you experience what its like to blush at the sound of someone’s name and have those perfectly planned conversations in your head completely fail after the first word. And then you figure out what it feels like when she starts liking some other guy who probably plays basketball and sort of has facial hair and all you have going for yourself is the top score in your pre-algebra test and band trophies and it leaves you bummed for a whole two days! Ahem. Uh, anyways..

Middle school is a planned chaos. It appears as though the school system thought to itself:

Hmm.. kids are usually going through a lot of things between the ages of 11-13, lets put them in a school together, yes this is a great idea!

But it didn’t kill us, so I’ll trust the guy that came up with the quote and assume it made us stronger. No more unoriginal yearbook signings that say “Hope you have a great summer! See you next year! K.I.T.” or the need to take food out of your braces. It must be safe now to say congratulations, you made it through some of the most awkward years of your life!

What awkward moments do you remember about your middle school/junior high life?

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93. Raising your hand and the professor not noticing

“Any questions? . . . anyone? No? Ok, moving on..”

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