Turning 40: 40 Years in 40 Sentences

What sets me apart from most people in my life is that I was alive when Jimmy Carter was president. Then, when I was one, Ronald Reagan took office and we moved into the house my Republican parents live in to this day. I began a lifelong love of reading in that house by going through my father’s electronics catalogs and attempting to read the descriptions of the latest eight track and Betamax players.  Continue reading →

Charlie

I dated a Charlie briefly. Well, dated in the way middle school kids do. We were “going out” but I don’t think we ever actually went anywhere. We probably never kissed either.

As I enter middle age, I’ve been thinking a lot about the people I grew up with. Maybe that’s because I see myself growing older while in my mind these people are forever teenagers. Or maybe it’s because we just started a Facebook group for the Alden High School class of 1997 and a lot of them have sent me friend requests. But in either case, I find it slightly bizarre that all these people I spent 40+ hours a week with for 13 years of my life are complete strangers to me now. Continue reading →

Higher Education

Struggling a bit writing today’s post – I’m feeling a bit burned out and we’re not quite a third of the way through the blog challenge!

What I was wrong about that begins with the letter H is my higher education choices. I just turned 36 and I’m not sure if that’s too young to be turning into a grumpy old lady, but I’m going to say it – youth is wasted on the young. I had no idea what I wanted when I turned 18. Or rather, I thought I did but I was really wrong. I only applied to three colleges, all of which would be perfect for the person I am now, but none of which were perfect for the person I was then. I was only accepted by one of them–Gettysburg College–so that’s where I went…for one semester. Predictably (in retrospect, anyways) I quit after one semester. I went back to Buffalo and was a hell of a lot happier in the enormous, diverse, anonymous, no blondes from Connecticut allowed, state school.

But even after I got the type of school right, I still didn’t know what I wanted. I changed my major three times from political science to communication to an international studies do-it-yourself degree which I convinced my advisor to patch together for me because I just wanted to be done with school. I also spent three semesters studying abroad – the only choice I was definitely not wrong about. Everyone should study abroad. But during each semester abroad, I only studied topics that were relevant to the location I was in, except when I kept up with my German studies while I was in India. If you think German with an American accent is unnatural, try it with a Gujarati accent. And again, I don’t think I was wrong about taking locally relevant classes. I learned a lot, but I also ended up taking a lot of summer classes back in Buffalo to make up for the semesters of Vedic Philosophy, John Howard 101, and How to Cook the Perfect Bratwurst. Continue reading →