So the real reason I’ve been laying low is that I don’t have anything to report. I didn’t go anywhere during Spring Break or do anything particularly interesting. While Austin was besieged by techies, cinephiles, and musicians I did homework. Please, no pity. Most people my age don’t have Spring Break and as a graduate student I don’t do well with free time. I even do homework over the summer.
So let’s not dwell in the past. A pretty big milestone is on my horizon and it’s blocking my creative energy. Actually the reason I’ve been away from the blogosphere is that I wasn’t sure how to draft this blog post. I’ve been thinking it over for weeks and because of that I can’t write about anything else. Except for an odd quip here and there about a cool photo I took.
I’m turning 30 in less than a month. I’m not hung up on age. My mother’s family ages freakishly; my 70-year-old uncle just got wrinkles and a few gray hairs. And I’m not upset about where I am in life. I’ve never had a post-college five-year plan. Obviously. So I’m not mourning the lack of a Nobel Prize or anything like that. I just don’t see myself as this age. But I don’t really associate myself with any age, to be honest.
So lately I’ve become obsessed with the age people did things:
1. Jean-Michel Basquiat was only 25 when he appeared on the cover of The New York Times Magazine in 1986. He died the two years later.
2. Steven Spielberg was only 29 when he directed Jaws. Julie Andrews was the same age when she was filming The Sound of Music.
3. Kurt Cobain was only 27 when he took his own life.
I don’t mean to be morbid. I was 12 when Cobain died and as many of my friends tried to come to terms with it, the only way I could make sense of it was to blame it on his “adult” problems. He was that far away age of 27 and I was just a kid. Now that I’ve surpassed his age I realize that yes, adult problems exist, but that doesn’t mean I’m any closer to understanding Kurt Cobain.
Which is why age for me is such a peculiar thing to define ourselves by — those numbers change too frequently to mean anything. People will still make a big deal out of it, of course, since it’s some sort of milestone. For me, it’s another decade between me and the ’80s.
To say I’ve been swallowed up whole by the belly of the semester (i.e. scrambling to keep with schoolwork as the semester rushes to a close) would be an understatement. But that doesn’t mean I can neglect the one extracurricular activity that’s been there for me through thick and thin, without ever asking for any thanks, glory, or Christmas gifts. As I prepare a stellar blog post, behold the beauty of spring: