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Back to School


My non-traditional college student role model

Strolling through the aisle of big box retailers and the virtual aisles of e-tailers hawking their back to school wares I cannot help but feel a smidge envious of folks beginning their academic journeys and whatnot. To clear, I do not envy their inevitable roommate dramas, claustrophobic, design deficit dorm rooms, lumpy stained mattresses or numerous trips schlepping stuff up unforgiving staircases.

In college I was considered a “mature” student, despite my Hello Kitty decor and posters of mediocre films liberated from dumpsters. I had tried college when I was more “college age” but found it interfered w/ my LA goth biscuit club life. This isn’t to suggest I got lousy grades, but rather to acknowledge what held my attention. The early 90s were a great time to be goth in LA. All the the Mike & Bruce clubs (LIKE EVERY DAMN NIGHT) meant school wasn’t exactly a priority. I was practically elderly when I eventually went back to college. By elderly I mean: 27! My gap year turned into a gap decade and suddenly I decided I ought to go back to college. Well, my mom’s gentle pressure to TAKE MY SAD BASTARDY NO DEGREE HAVING 27 SELF AND GET THE HELL UP OUT OF HER HOUSE might have slightly instrumental.

Anyway thus began my seven year academic tour of hippie college up the eastern seaboard. The first college shopping outing w/ my mom I bought several pairs of cha cha heels, some make up, a sequin skirt and a damn Gold N Hot hooded dryer. I was like NAILING this, “Move to Asheville for hippie college” thing, amirite. I blame Thornton Melon who was my non-traditional student role model. Subsequent shopping trips involved my mom trying to steer me towards college appropriate things while I deliberated over which color Gap shiny satin “party pants” would be the most versatile. Chile, I had to BORROW a pen during orientation because I hadn’t bothered to get any before hand.

I should be so ashamed of these dorm pics, but oddly, I’m not!

Me prepping for college was not like the me that loves organization and is clutter-adverse. I was all about useless clutch purses, faux fur chubbies, wearing Adidas shower slides w/ knee socks out in public and pink rubble kitten heel mules in the shower. Eventually, I found a middle ground of sparkly awesomeness and practicality. Of course, I was still hopelessly high maintenance in my personal style. At least I never had to run out in the middle of the night to a gas station (in the middle of nowhere) and spend $8 on a thimbleful of mouthwash and a 12 pack of tampons.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Cara W. permalink
    08/30/2012 1:49 pm

    Missed out on the entire dorm experience becuase I attended a commuter school and lived in a shitty apartment with my best friend from HS, her smelly cats and pot dealing boyfriend. .Can you tell I’m still sorta bitter about it? My friends who went away for college seemed miserable whenever I talked to them. they were envious of my apartment and I was (though I hated to admit it) envious of their “real college” expereince. Weird. anyway, this was an interesting post to read. i can’t really relate but I enjoy your writing.

  2. Melissa permalink
    08/30/2012 2:01 pm

    I was cracking up all during this post. My co-workers probably think I’ve lost it. My own college experience was pretty standard. My parents drove me to college, helped me unpack my stuff and then left. My dad treated going off to college the same as he did going on camping trips. I had a lot of useless items that I ended up giving to people in my dorm. My dad was so mad when they visited during parents’ weekend.

  3. Pollo Con Loco permalink
    08/30/2012 2:11 pm

    WHOA. I remember when your dorm looked like that. You had your walls covered with purses. I thought that was so strange, but I never said anything because you really seemed to like it. But seriously, it wasn’t that cute AT. ALL.

  4. 08/30/2012 2:29 pm

    This post made me laff. Your dorm room looks like the front section of TJ Maxx.

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