How The #DavidsonRiots Can Be Used As a Metaphor For My Quarter Life Crisis.
Last Saturday night, possibly hundreds of non Davidson College affiliates came revel in the last few hours of Spring Frolics. The result: a massive fight in one of our social houses, police officers from multiple districts, a small scale riot scene, and perhaps the most pervading consequence – personal belongings ransacked out of our dorms. Others had their cars keyed, eating houses were vandalized, and goddammit my moped was damaged in a half assed hot wiring attempt.
This event has initiated a few responses.
1. Excitement that our predictable social scene was livened up by crimes associated with the urban hood!
2. Blind rage calling to end the Black Student Coalition who supposedly publicized and invited these individuals to campus
3. A sense of displaced guilt over one’s personal socioeconomic status thereby justifying the thievery
4. Ambivalence/ignorance. #DavidsonRiot? I don’t understand…
Am I pissed that my beloved chinese moped got vandalized and left high and dry next to Phi delt? Absolutely. Am I legally justified to place the blame on any individual? Unfortunately not. However, I think we need to seriously reevaluate party recquirements at the BSC if we are going to continue to use it as a party space. Also, to the person that ok’d kids coming on a party bus? – you should probably talk with the dean. Should we end frolics? No. Should we recognize that Davidson exists within a hyper bubble of moral utopia? Yes, if you would like to not have your stuff stolen again.
To those of my class that found the #DavidsonRiot kind of thrilling, I feel that, really. In a lot of ways, the Davidson social scene can get a bit predictable. Which brings me to (like all blog posts) a little paragraph in self reflection.
College is all about your formative years. Its four impressionable years away from the voice of your parents and your roots. The experience should make you question and explore ideas, questions, and life paths that before college you had never really considered. Its almost like mental/ emotional puberty: you have a lot of unanswered questions about whats going on inside your head, and you are constantly tweaking your life plan to fit the questions or philosophies that you develop while in college.
Somedays, you just want to be on a life path that is what is comfortable, familiar, or what everyone else is doing, kind of like how you just wanted to wear the uggs and the tiffany bracelet like everyone else in your middle school homeroom.
And somedays you feel like if you don’t have those crazy times in your twenties that you are going to drive yourself so crazy in an office cubicle that eventually you will be like dwight in the office, and really into beet farming and parcor.
And me? There was this one time (I swear only once) in third grade that I went to see a child psychologist about (in the words a hollywood doctor might use) my hyper perfectionism and unwillingness to try something that I didn’t know I would be good at causing me to misbehave in my third grade class. Misbehave is an understatement, I basically missed third grade and pretty much became immune to the shame that time outs were supposedly supposed to inflict upon a young child.
With that character flaw in mind , my parents took on a different style of parenting (I assume) to help their child develop into less of a neurotic head case.
So here I am, a former neurotic head case looking down the barrel of her last summer as a student wonder. What the heck am I going to do 365 days from now? And why do I feel like the strange bird who doesn’t have their life together?
Sometimes I think my professors know me better than I do. Today over Indian curry and talks of contemporary China, my professor threw a book at me to read: The Dud Avocado, By Elaine Dundy. By the looks of it, Elaine and I would be big pals.
The Dud Avocado follows the romantic and comedic adventures of a young American who heads overseas to conquer Paris in the late 1950s. Edith Wharton and Henry James wrote about the American girl abroad, but it was Elaine Dundy’s Sally Jay Gorce who told us what she was really thinking. Charming, sexy, and hilarious,The Dud Avocado gained instant cult status when it was first published and it remains a timeless portrait of a woman hell-bent on living.
A woman hell bent on living.
If that doesn’t describe the identity I have been grappling with, I’m not sure what does.
How will that definition play out in my own plan? I will let you know in 365 days and perhaps many more blog posts.