Monday, April 21, 2008

enjoy the view

They say the mountains are majestic, but I prefer this view to any other in Boulder. God bless the men's rowing team.

Boulder is a curious place. I don't hate it here, though I take great pleasure in ranting about it, because, I think that's funny. And I sometimes get offended at people taking me too seriously and thinking that I'm miserable in these surroundings. But, I guess that's the price you pay to be yourself, be misunderstood, and not have the patience to explain yourself.

So Boulder. I hear that it has an unusually high suicide rate among teenagers, but that came from the mouth of a professor and I have no scholarly evidence with which to back it. I believe it though. And I think that it's because it's so beautiful, so majestic, so breathtaking. If you live in a place that everyone says is perfect, and you, yourself need to be perfect in order to compliment your perfect American dream of a family, the pressure must be immense. I wouldn't know. I have parents who are themselves, who never put on airs. I grew up in a small podunk town with simple neighbors who would be there for you come hell or high water, and no one drove black SUVs or wore performance outer wear. And nobody cared if somebody did, because they were real people, and all they expected of you was the same.

I'm romanticizing my childhood, of course, but at least I can do that. It was a glorious childhood; I don't think there were many like it. Today, I look around me and I see all of these kids who seem to serve as little more than lifestyle accessories to their parents. That's the progression now: high school, iPod; college, Chiwawa; mid-twenties, attractive mate & impressive starting career; late twenties, beautiful child. Toss in a yoga class, a black lab, the suburban 5 bedroom, and a Nissan Murano. Add water.

It seems that now just as much as ever people do the family and kids thing with little regard for what they want or what they need, just what they think they should do. And I get this sense more and more as I talk to people with kids, and they tell me how great it will be when I have them (a challenge, but so great!), and I tell them I don't want kids, and they say with a knowing smile, "Oh, that'll change." And I insist it won't (but, hell, what do I know about myself; I'm only me), or say, well, nobody knows the future, but that's just not my priority, and they get all bent out of shape.

And, you know, I really think that some, not all, are jealous. They resent that they had kids because that's what they were supposed to do and they didn't attend to whether or not it was right for them. So, for me to have the audacity to think that I could escape a fate they now regret really irks them. This has happened more and more as of late, maybe because I'm getting older, or maybe because I'm in a place that is ironically progressive yet straight out of the idealized image of the 1950's.

All I know is, I don't want kids because I know that I could never be half the parent my mom or dad was. And that's all the information I need.

Like the new hat? Here's to CU.


Tim Haught said...

I want a nissan murano!

Sam! said...

I'm sure it happens even more when you go back home to visit...I know it does to me!

On my first day of work back down here in the dirty south, here's how 3 conversations went:
"do you have any kids?"
me - "no"
"how old ARE you?"
"well sweetie, don't drink the water here, EVERYONE is pregnate"
me - *blank stare*

although, SOMETIMES I was asked how old I was, and once they found out, THEN they asked if I had kids...there were a couple variations from the example above, but you get the picture.

<3 you