Remembering a friend, loving a restaurant – #best09

What were YOUR bests of 2009? Take the challenge!

What were YOUR bests of 2009? Take the challenge!

My best restaurant experience of 2009? Really, it was a set of experiences–any time I visited Centro Latin Kitchen on Pearl Street in Boulder. Not only are the food and drinks at Centro nom to the max, but the waitstaff and management almost always make a meal just that much more enjoyable.

Taige Smith was a manager at Centro. He recently passed away unexpectedly and much, much too soon. The Elephant Journal wrote a post about Taige and his legacy. Taige had a heart-breaking smile, was a genuine listener and gave some of the best bear hugs that one could ever ask for. I am fortunate that I was able to share laughter and conversation with him during the past few years.

Taige Smith

Taige Smith

Gwen Bell’s Best of 2009 Blog Challenge prompted me to think about the opportunities I had throughout 2009 to break bread with friends and family. Along with those memories, I’m keeping Taige in my thoughts.

A Quarterlife Crisis? Who—Me?

Is that a crisis ahead?

A while ago, a friend shared with me an article, Welcome to Your Quarterlife Crisis. I shuddered after the first two paragraphs; I felt queasy after finishing the article.  Is THAT what it is? I’m in a…quarterlife crisis (I’ll abbreviate as “QLC,” since, ya know, I’m a bit jumpy as a QLCer)?

Affluent youth who have education, social capital, cultural capital, and so many other resources—in essence, young adults who have options—couldn’t possibly claim a painful plight of mediocrity and apathy. It’s not a “crisis.” Ugh.

The first statement in the article that emotionally backhanded me: “An obvious choice for panicking twentysomethings with a post-undergraduate sense of displacement and for the ones that aren’t fulfilled by their jobs is grad school.”

Hm. I’m working on a Master’s degree right now.  Did I panic, and in a fit of anxiety apply to graduate school in hopes of prolonging my arrival at bona fide adulthood (whatever that elusive thing is)? I would like to say, “No.”

But… did I?

I was a super-duper-extra-special undergraduate senior at the University of Colorado, Boulder.  I thought it would be clever to earn both a BA and BS. I graduated and got a job in my field. Then, merely one year after I graduated, I began my Master’s. Before entering graduate school, I did indeed feel “displacement.” And I wasn’t intellectually or socially fulfilled by my job. So back to school I went.

Wow. The QLC symptoms actually fit.

With just a little research, I found news articles and opinion pieces, blogs, magazine articles, books and fiction novels. Even Oprah had a television episode dedicated to the “Turbulent Twenties.”  This QLC business is being talked about.  But does the talk actually tell us anything?

I searched in academic journals—psychology, sociology, social science journals—to see if there happened to be any academic work surrounding QLC.  I didn’t find anything. That I didn’t find anything academic made the QLC theory that much more tangible, manifest, relevant: it’s a fresh concept. My generation is trying to figure out where it’s standing and where it’s going.

"ripercussioni" by emio_me under a Creative Commons license

"ripercussioni" by emio_me under a Creative Commons license

While the QLC symptoms fit, I don’t consider myself in anything resembling a crisis. Rather, I’m rockin’ a Quarter Life Crossroads. And at this crossroads, I choose to move—forward, upward, through, in-between and outward. Let’s get moving!

hey, you. welcome to my blog.

thanks for stopping by.

Really, what better day than today–my 27th birthday–to share with you this new corner of my life?

I’d been wanting to start a blog. For awhile. And at long last, here I arrive and I am ready. to. rumble. I’m ecstatic to share, write, belly-laugh, goof off and listen. I hope you’ll stick around, comment (as you’re compelled!) and harass me.

Of note: a big, humongous THANK YOU! goes to Rahim Rahman. I once–briefly and inCali + Rahim...sailing in San Francisco Bay passing–mentioned that I’d love to have a website…especially if it were caligater.com. Months later, out of the blue, he surprised me with a ready-to-go site. Thanks, Rahim. <3

Much gratitude also to:

  • my brother-in-law, Eric Rank, for his know-how and cheer-leading skills
  • my magnificent friend, Erika Napoletano, for her crisis support and WordPress smarts

And to YOU, whoever you are, visiting this little digital corner o’ mine.