A Year of Trash Fire and Hope

Everyone talks about how 2016 was a trash fire of a year. When I think about the major headlines of the year, I don’t think I can disagree. But 2016 was also a year of growth, of strength, of light. Babies were born, dogs posed for adorable photos, great TV was made and watched, some human rights victories were won. I learned what happens after you leap from a plane and land on your own two feet. I got better at being me. I fell in love.

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On Becoming an Adult and Growing Up

I didn’t learn how to swallow a pill until I was 14 years old. For years I suffered through bubblegum-flavored liquid amoxicillin and little plastic cups of Children’s Tylenol. But I remember the moment after school in 9th grade when I finally got a little red pill down and was granted headache-relief. I had one particular thought post-swallow: Wow, maybe now I’m really an adult.

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Inside Out and the Plight of the Happy Girl

A lot of the time, one of the many joys of watching a movie is the slight impenetrability of it. When you watch a movie, you’re watching images flash in certain sequences, and your unconscious job as a viewer is to discern meaning based on them. This is different from, say, reading a novel, which can provide the experience of directly entering a character’s mind through each narrated thought. There’s a different kind of engagement involved with movies. In fact, in a lot of the best movies the audience is forced to do a little work, to put some pieces together, to employ the Kuleshov effect in real time. 

Inside Out, Pixar’s latest movie, changes this up.

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What I've Learned From 29 Days in the Real World

I love re-watching things. When I find a TV show or a movie or even a two-minute YouTube video that I love, I’ll make sure that the love doesn’t end with the first viewing. You get something from re-watching things. You notice the nuances: the details of costuming, the editing patterns, the narrative themes. But even more than that, you get to experience everything you love over and over. It’s instant gratification, artistic masturbation. You take something that’s good and give yourself the gift of living it again and again. 

Unfortunately, real life has no rewind and replay. I graduated from college 29 days ago, and ever since then I’ve been struggling with this limitation.

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