Monday, May 9, 2011

Essay 1: Who I Am

Who Am I? : The question at the center of clichéd 80s movies, spontaneous trips to rural India, and every midlife crisis. While this quandary may be even more prevalent than baby videos on YouTube, to many, the answer remains a mystery. I have searched through all the normal channels and have yet to formulate a conclusive response.

When I was five, I was a princess. By eight, I was one of the “cool kids”. At 12, I was a future Olympian (only by my own standards and my overly enthusiastic love for Roots’ apparel). By 16, I was a nerd and kind of a jerk. Now at 21, I have recently renounced my title of student and once again feel like I am standing in Baskin Robbins, facing too many choices, each with a completely different flavor, unable to make a decision. Graduating and moving on into the “real world” requires adopting a new identity. Will I embrace my argumentative side and become a lawyer? Will I overcome my complete lack of scientific skill and fulfill my grandma’s predictions by being a doctor? Maybe I am destined to be a dancing hobo in the TTC subway (currently my number one option).

Even though Google returns 154 million potential aids, none of the links seem to be a suitable solution. However, my Google hitlist does reveal that I am by no means alone in this quest. The answer may be more elusive than the Lockness Monster, but even more people are determined to hunt it down. Thankfully, in our age of brands it seems that this search has been rendered irrelevant by the oodles of brands eager to sell you the solution. Having caught wind of the mass identity-seeking audience, marketers have created campaigns marketing to our need for a sense of self. My beer and my passport say I am Canadian, my computer says I am a Mac (though I used to be a very proud owner of a PC), my T-shirt says I’m Joe. Apparently, even my labels can’t seem to decide who exactly I am.

With all this debate, I’m going to pull a Miley Cyrus and say that I can have the best of both worlds. On one hand, I can be any and all of the things in this essay, and on the other hand I am free to continue to redefine myself. A simple rearrangement of the original question transforms it from an anxiety-inducing quest of self-discovery to a statement of personal assurance. Who I am is made no more or less true by sharing it with others so why spoil the intrigue? You’ll just find out along with the rest of ‘em. Afterall, Loréal says I’m worth it.

1 comment:

  1. Just keep trying on different personas till you find the one that fits. BTW, the one you're wearing right now, seems to be a perfect choice!

    You're awesome!