Ta-da, back in the Ireland. I’ve always thought that countries we refer to with ‘the’ (excluding word-countries like the US and the UK) are super cool. I feel like most of them in English have sort of gone out of common usage, but I still like to say the Ukraine and the Sudan. In German, I know that it’s the Switzerland (die Schweitz). Russian, of course, doesn’t have any articles, so it can’t do that. But I don’t know, I think it sounds cool. Some are pretty silly I guess (the Canada, the China) but I do really like the Ireland. The Morocco. The Azerbaijan. There you have it.
I miss my cats terribly. Also human people, you know, but cats.
Anyway, here I am. After saying my farewells, I hopped back on a plane and flew back on Sunday and arrived on Monday. I’ve done basically nothing since then. The first few days were pretty rough. I’m not normally super effected by jet lag, but I had it something fierce this time. I think I’ve gotten over it at this point, now it’s just laziness. But I’m determined to go to a museum tomorrow. There’s one quite close to my house and, as a baby step in going back to actually doing things with my life, I think it’s ideally suited. You all can check to make sure–if I don’t mention The National Museum of Decorative Arts and History in next week’s post, I give you permission to…say something to me. The website makes it sound pretty intriguing, if a touch eclectic: “Discover weaponry, furniture, silver, ceramics, glassware, Asian art and the Asgard, as well as folklife and costume artefacts.” So look forward to that, sounds like it’ll be fun. Not sure what The Asgard is, wondering if it’s any different from Asgard (no article) of Norse mythology.
Right, school’s starting again this coming week, so that’s something that will be nice in terms of learning (which I honestly do enjoy), seeing people, and having a bit of schedule in my life. At the same time, it’s school, so it’s lame. This term, I’m taking six classes again, meeting Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Race and Ethnicity: Theoretical Concepts (Episode II); Colonialism, Conflict, and Liberal Intervention (Episode II); Research Methods (Episode II); Labour, Migration, and Conflict; Contemporary Sources of Conflict; and Migration and Education in Europe and North America. Joy of joys, more Research Methods! Though that one will have a different professor and I understand it to run very differently from the first term, so we’ll see. One way or another it will be related to writing the dissertation, so I can’t imagine it being a fountain of pleasure, but hopefully it will be a bit nicer than last term. I’m really excited for the education one because I think that’s where I’m drifting in terms of career and post-graduation plans. It’s going to be a crazy ride, one way or another.
Which brings me to my title for this week. It sort of just came to me as I sat down to write, and it fits a bit in with other things I’ve been thinking about. You often hear that you’re supposed to be yourself. One of my favorite quotations (no idea where from) is to be yourself because everyone else is taken. People have often praised me for being myself and not caring what other people think about me. This is not entirely true, of course, as I am not always who I am and I do care too much for other people’s impressions of me. However, I think something that I have been gifted with is the ability to be very silly. Now silliness is seen by different people in different ways (as things often are) but I often behave in ways that adhere to the mainstream definition of the word silly. My point, though, is that everyone is silly because we’re all different but we also share many things in common with any variety of other people. So it’s not always necessarily about being different from others that makes you yourself. Sometimes the things that link us to others are what make us the most unique. For example, I’m really into cats (surprise!). This has sort of become a mainstream bit of craziness–we all know crazy cat people. But we’re not all the same because we’re crazy cat people, we’re just brought together by our fearless manifestation of silliness (though obviously loving cats isn’t silly in the slightest).
Not really sure that any of that was intelligible, but it all makes sense to me. Which just proves my point. Don’t be afraid to be silly. I think people who like football are silly, and people who like football often think I’m silly for it. I think investment bankers are silly because they’re like the epitome of not-silly, and they likewise think I’m silly for the precise opposite reason. Like I’ve said in another post, we’re all maniacs down here on Earth. Who knows what any alien races might think of us, should they observe our collective silliness.
But who cares?