Chapter 11: Goalkeeper
As we approach the final few chapters of this chronicle of events from my life, I am told to look forward and investigate goals I want to meet, both long- and short-term. The opportunities are endless. Therefore, to organize these debilitatingly fluctuant and noisy attempts I have made to put on paper the conquering of a full life, I am going to categorize each set of goals in a fashion similar to my last post.
This may or may not be due to the fact that during the creation of my last post I taught myself extremely basic html maneuvers that I would like to master.
The categories will be as follows:
I believe that these accurately portray the basic sets of interests most individuals hoping to attain the conventional ideals of success in our society wish to achieve. With the exception of the miscellaneous heading, when one thinks of the modern individual, said modern individual would be the coagulation of this person’s perspective on how success is reached within their overarching culture and how they find themselves interacting with it. This said, my modern individual I am envisioning will be as close to who I am as a person currently so that I may portray realistic goals for myself without setting too high of standards for myself or humbling myself to the extinction of my abilities.
At what I currently view as its most basic level, I am striving to become a photojournalist. My dream school, Columbia College Chicago, incredibly has accepted me into their program, but due to costs being an upwards of thirty-five thousand a year with most extraneous costs called for, I doubt that attending the institution is not much more than a pipe dream, even with the potential of being awarded scholarships. Central Michigan University, however, provides not only an acclaimed photojournalism degree, but also provides a minor in sociology, which would allow me to gain the intelligence and social graces to interact with individuals from various socioeconomic, household, cultural, and personal backgrounds. In addition to this lovely piece of news, I’m waiting to hear back from them regarding a rather generous scholarship that I-and about 800 others-attended campus to compete against one another for.
My draw to Columbia definitely generates gravity with its location-Chicago. I’m a big city girl and a middle-of-nowhere girl, and CMU, unfortunately, is in middle-of-nowhere suburbs, which doesn’t really tickle my fancy.
However, if I play my cards right (and I do intend to do so), neglecting to attend the college in the large city will heighten my attention upon my studies so that once I graduate I can catapult myself and my career to large cities, middle-of-nowhere mountains and plains; amongst various other cultural environments, but more on that later in the traveling section.
Ultimately, the goal would either be to create my own journalistic endeavor, inspired by my current list of ‘greats’, or work for any one of the institutions I consider a part of this list:
Lone Wolf Magazine, whose website boasts headlines outlining the four focuses they represent with their product:
FASHION | PHILOSOPHY | FEMINISM| ART HISTORY
All of these of which are topics I would feel blessed to report on and embellish with images.
The Wall Street Journal Magazine would be incredible to work for, what with their ability to recognize incredible artistic talent within those innovating seemingly mundane every day creations, such as furniture, concrete slabs intended to protect beachgoers from the sun as they act as hundred-ton umbrellas, and an umbrella that actually costs $8,000.
They also have an uncanny eye for underexposed cultures, both within articles and photography ventures. I recently read Kashmir Reborn, by Tom Downey, an article revolving around how the Middle-Eastern country has developed from its terror-ridden past into the fast-growing tourist destination it previously was before the 2001 terrorist attacks. The country boasts a 10% yearly growth rate of its economy (don’t quote me on which year though, I’d link you to the article, but unless you already are a member of the site, it won’t let you read more than one paragraph), incredible religious architecture from various religious sects, and its inhabitants pride themselves on their cultural diversity from India. Photos from the article can be seen here.
The last two dream employers are, of course-
TIME Magazine, and
National Geographic. Reasons for these, I do think, are unnecessary.
Now that I have successfully used over 700 words to identify much more of what I had previously believed to be my own goals, let us move on to
Most of my wanderlust is summed up in my interest in photojournalism. It is my hope that my work will bring me around the world in order to experience cultures, people, food, hardship, and the like to bring as much unbiased information I possibly can to the public. Unfortunately, this doesn’t leave much room for romantic endeavors or a family
although I’m convinced I wont have children, my entire family disagrees with me; we shall see. I would not be wholly disappointed if my career allows me to end up in a city or bustling village or town in a more developed country, traveling these environments in order to experience them as much as one woman can in order to relay to the public the best place to entertain oneself. Coffeehouses, cinemas-castles, if I’m lucky enough to find myself in Europe-and various artistic pastimes would suit me just fine and allow for me to act as a civilized, socialized human being and not simply a culture machine who gobbles up every society but the one she was born to in order to reach some globalized nirvana.
Oh man, oh gee whiz; this one’s difficult. Yes, I want to fall in love, yes, I would love to spend the rest of my life with someone, but do you know how difficult it is for me to admit this? Just speaking about myself makes me feel guilty and selfish-which is something I am aware many people relate to. This is not good. Love is held up on a pedestal. We are born to love. Platonic love, as I have stated in a previous post, comes very naturally to me. Romantic love? That-however illogical it may sound-feels selfish to me.
In response to a statement I made regarding my (apparently odd) criteria I subconsciously look for when interested in someone, I received this:
And as I said, their comment was entirely accurate. I had specified that I was looking for someone with a strong sense of self, an ability to converse and disagree with my point of view, possess interests wildly different than mine (while sharing some of my own, because nothing could work with entire polar opposites), be sassy enough to handle my sass, and be entirely unpredictable. I meant this last part in a positive sense-I’m not talking any American Psycho type stuff here. I would hope that they would reveal to me who they are as I earned the ability to learn from them.
I don’t want to speak too soon, but as of lately I’ve been graced with the presence of someone who is many of these things to me and somehow deems me worthwhile to spend time with. It’s a lovely feeling and to those I speak about them to, I deeply apologize because I can’t. Shut. Up.
Since all relationships are not of the romantic nature, I’d like to keep and strengthen the already gung-ho relationships I have with a few of my close friends (and those who are becoming so). You know who you are.
Familial ties have become increasingly important to me, although some family members and I have ceased to see eye-to-eye on some basics of communication. This downside, however, is greatly outweighed by the positivity of the life experiences and interests we share. I would like to continue to bolster this.
Contrary to popular belief, I think an obsession with oneself is completely healthy and not at all a symptom of the negative connotation that it brings, even when alluding to narcissism. When someone mentions that another human being is ‘self-obsessed’, it normally means that this person thinks very highly of their accomplishments and traits and consequently looks down upon others who do not share these superiorities and affections. I have yet to find a single word that explains this behavior.
‘Self-obsessed’, I have come to discover, is a label that can be infinitely positive, and is something that I am striving to become. When we label someone as ‘obsessed’ with something, we mean that they are doing all they can to learn about their obsession and are enjoying every minute of it. Of course, there is the negative side of obsession, which tips into a psychiatric issue, but that’s the sort of label that our unnamed individual described above would bear. This definition, as stated, is infinitely positive. All-star athletes are obsessed with their sport. Prodigious directors are obsessed with their craft. These people are obsessed with what they love and they wish to share it with the world. It is knowledge, it is talent, it is kindness in the form of affection and philanthropy. Self-obsession is another form of self-actualization, and I am hoping to find a way to package it in such a way that will be digestible for others so that we can build each other up.
My ultimate goal is to be 100% honest with myself about any event in my life that may pop up. This is not possible, and I am aware. I need to focus my thoughts on the subjectivity of my emotions and objectivity of my subsequent actions. In this way, I will continue to improve.
I. Am a sweet tooth. There; I said it. I was once playing the ‘Girl Talk‘ version of Jenga (light pink, has questions on each block, very appreciated when trying to get to know someone) and this question arose: “What is your favorite candy?” Apparently “coffee loaded with fats and saccharine” is not a sufficient answer.
Okay, those weren’t my exact words. They may as well have been. I have awful sugar crashes, but my taste buds crave that stuff. I’m currently working to be more disciplined with my habits-eating turkey burgers instead of hamburgers, opting for fruit instead of sweets after school-but if I’m really wanting those last two cookies, I’m going to have them. Because I’m good to my body, but I’m also good to my soul. I also can never give up my now-weekly decaf sugar buzz at Mayan Buzz Café during their Thursday night Poetry Nights (8 to 10 pm this is a shameless plug please go I would love to see you there).
I’ve begun yoga at a local studio, and I’ve gotten in the habit within the last month of going two days a week-Mondays in the evening, and Wednesdays… wait for it… from six to seven am before I go to school. It’s like a shot of espresso and a tranquilizer in one. Don’t ask me how. It’s incredible, though.
On the days I’m not at my practice, I’m either running on my treadmill in an attempt to return to my previous state of fitness before my summer job tore my motivation to shreds, practicing yoga with either an exercise video or with the book of poses I have in my bibliography, or sometimes if I’m feeling crazy… both. Yeah. It’s no marathon, but it works for me. Sometimes I even pick up the lil five pound weights, once again, in order to eventually get back to the state of fitness I was in before my job took over my free time.
The goal here is to improve, not to a fitness standard that others have inspired within me-although I will use their accomplishments and physiques as motivation-but to the ultimate ability I possess. The lovely thing about this is that every time I’m practicing, running, lifting, or whatever, I’m meeting that goal. Whatever I do that day is the best I can do at that point in my life. I can be satisfied each time I leave my place of exertion.
Strangely, I’m not awfully worried with my future financial status. I’m preparing for my college tuition by applying to every diddly-darn scholarship I can apply my skill and knowledge set to, my favorite places to shop for clothes are my mom’s, my aunt’s, my second-aunt’s, and my best friend’s closets as well as an obscene amount of thrift stores, I’ve taught myself how to color my own hair, and I pretty much need to learn how to survive in fair to poor environments for indeterminate stretches of time with my career of choice. Putting away a lot of the money I make is not going to be that difficult for me, I do not believe. At least I hope this is the case. We shall see.
If my family’s prediction is correct, and I do end up wanting a family of my own, I do not see myself becoming a parent in my twenties. I may not even see parenthood until my late thirties. I will never subject a child to a household where they have to wonder if basic necessities-food, clothing, shelter, love-are going to be provided on any given day. I must be able to assure a child my attention, compassion, and support-both emotionally and financially-before that child becomes an option.
I guess this is a bucket list of sorts. Not much here is wanting to be elaborated on, so a list will suffice:
- Visit all 7 continents
- Graduate college
- Get an apartment
- Buy a house (???? Nothing too big, big = empty)
- Live for a period of time within a city
- Live for a period of time in the middle-of-nowhere
- VISIT THE HOBBIT HOLES
- Publish a collection of poetry
- Scuba dive
- Win the Nobel Peace Prize (I mean, this might be the least accessible out of everything here, but half of doing something is thinking you can do it, right?)
So, two-thousand-some-number-higher-than-fifteen Quinn, these were your goals today. I don’t expect you to meet all of them-after all, you’re only human. Try to extend some of that compassion you have for others to yourself. If you’re too self-obsessed by this time and you’re starting to sound a lot like our friend from the example, it might be time to turn that compassion back towards others. I don’t have worries about you. I’m fine back here in the past. We did it.