Confused In Cambridge
Well, here goes nothing…
I know what you’re thinking, here comes another entitled, white, twentysomething, thinking she has something important to say about life that everyone needs to hear. Plot twist: I’m actually brown, but the rest of that is probably true. Now I've done nothing extraordinary, and this is just me rambling on about my life, and boys and things that I don’t understand. Yeah, it’s not going to be pretty. And I doubt the Guardian will want me as their top reporter, but at the end of the day, the goings on in this very moment are probably not going to make the final cut in the shoddy attempt-at-a-romedy motion picture that’ll be my life. So, taking that into account why not have a detailed record of all the drunken, tragic, insecurity-ridden moments of my early twenties? If not to serve as a bittersweet memory, at least it may serve as a source of enjoyment to someone.
A little background might help. I’m Asian, born and raised in Europe, went to an anglo-american international school and have the most eurotrash accent known to man. A classic TCK, with no ‘real’ national identity.I've found that referring to myself as a ‘global citizen’ doesn't really do it for most people. No one really likes ‘that guy’, we all know one, the ‘ hey, I just really don’t like to define myself by a location, it just constrains my aura’.’ ‘No, Harry. You grew up in Chichester and that one time you made it to Guernsey on a family boating holiday doesn't make you well traveled, but wearing a beanie when it’s 35 degrees out does make you look like a bit of a knob, so good on you.’’ It kind makes me wonder though, do they have a point? I mean, it’s human nature to label and categorize things to the last detail; what if what I’m missing exists between the lines?
I've spent my whole life telling myself I know whats coming next, and after a while it’s easy to think you've got the winning hand. Nothing much changes in your first 18 years of life, you grow up, screw up and try your best not to get knocked up all in the comfort of the same school-to-home routine. And so by force of habit, things that I think are going to happen, happen. So I assume I've got it figured out. Life sort of carried on like that till about last year when, low and behold, I started getting things wrong. Now I can go down the road of blaming society and all its expectations falling through, but that would be petty and totally unnecessary, I’d rather take the high road; instead I blame rom-coms. Well, more precisely, I blame myself for letting me think that life plays out like that. 1h30, boy meets girl, minor hiccup, blissful existence. Get in, get out, nobody gets hurt. Except in my version of events, it doesn't really pan out like that.
The ‘ stages of life’ we’re bombarded with go along the lines of, high school: puppy-love, college: serious relationship (that may or may not end in misery). I know they’re movies, but the idea had to come from somewhere right? Now a year in a half in, with almost everyone I know following this pattern, I’ve ended up feeling like the unicorns when Noah’s arc came to town. Sure they’re practically just horses but it really seems like they got the raw end of the deal. ‘It happens when it happens, you can’t find it , it’ll find you’ is the mantra told to me time and time again by caring, but still totally loved-up friends. But that doesn't change the fact that 90% of the time, I’m the fall back friend. When I get good news, the people I’d want to know first, wouldn't reciprocate the act. And that's normal. But it doesn't take away the Friday night sting.
I fill holes with people. Take that how you will, but it’s not sustainable. Maybe that’s why I can’t get over not being with someone, I need to know I’m not only the group’s token sad single friend. The one who’s Friday night antics and poor life decisions make Saturday morning headlines only to be accompanied by a ‘aww honey its so great you’re single, you’re just having fun in your 20's, sometimes I wish I was you’. No, no you don’t. Because the only reason I do this is because for a brief hour (or 3, you know who you are) I can feel like you do 22 hours a day.
Now all of this seems self indulgent, pathetic and just a little whiny; and it is all of the above. As much as I know my self worth shouldn't cling to the opinions of others, as much as I know I don’t need to fit the stereotypes, I’m just not there yet…I guess it’ll happen when it happens. But for now,
You do you