Video games, Literature, Military History, Journalism, Photography, Movies
February 15, 2017
It's been too long, my friends. Far, far too long. Of course, I've a ton to tell you about the cocktail of intellectual strain, caffeine, and personal growth that is my life as a sophomore at the University of Richmond.
You might be wondering, "Hunter, why haven't you updated your blog in such a long while?" Well, beloved, it's because I have been a bit lazy when it comes to writing. Or, to pluck a term from the well of euphemisms favored by people who feel guilty but don't want to admit it, "preoccupied." But I'm starting to realize that doing what you love often requires you to make time to do the things you love, even if such an exercise sometimes feels like doing so is akin to sculpting a marble statue with a toothpick.
As you might have gathered, the semester is shaping up to be a busy one. I've got new classes, a part-time job, new responsibilities as an exec member for clubs... but more on those later. There's a lot on my plate and I already feel as though I'm on my third, fourth, or fifth helping. Between classes, extracurriculars, a job, and those nagging existential woes that come with being a young adult not completely sure of the direction your life is going, I'm swamped.
If you, too, spend an exorbitant amount of time on social media, you're probably familiar with this meme, which I've edited just a smidge. I think it's quite efficient at illustrating my current situation. In all likelihood, you've felt like you've been in the same position:
This cartoon's got me down to a T--right down to the implied caffeine dependence and the short, stubby limbs that dangle from the chair.
Life seems pretty crazy--but it is fine. I've got new responsibilities and obligations this semester, but I signed up for all of them, and, honestly, am having a pretty darn good time with them. Not only am I building my resumé, but I'm forging connections with new friends and doing 90% of the things I didn't think I would do in college for want of an extroverted disposition. It's going to be an amazing year.
Of course, I'm going to do my darnedest to update you ASAP all about what I've been up to for the past month, which runs the gamut from rubbing shoulders with bigwig politicians to receiving violent Valentine-themed poems from middle schoolers to writing a story about a south Georgia man whose toilet is the Fountain of Youth.
Yeah, we've got a lot to talk about.
On a mostly unrelated note, here are some of the pictures I took last month after the state got hit by a snowstorm. I wanted to take a nifty photo of our picturesque, snow-slapped wonderland to post to the spider_diaries Instagram account, but fellow diarist Ellie beat me to the punch. I simply can't live with the idea of having ventured out into the North Pole of Hoth and nearly freezing my hands off to take photos just for them to molder in my phone, so here are a few of them:
And yes, it has occurred to me that this is an About Me and I've neglected to tell you much about me. So I'm from Chesapeake, Virginia, a place just south of Norfolk that's large enough to be a county but isn't because reasons. There's not much to do in Chesapeake other than going for a dip in the Great Dismal Swamp (ill-advised) or head to a neigboring town to hit the beach, and I think that's part of the reason I spent most of my earlier childhood holed up in my room reading books or playing Playstation.
I branched out in my high school years, though, and I've developed affinites for genealogy, running, film, and photography. I am not a man of many talents, though among them include the remarkable power to turn my thumb all the way backwards, the ablility to tell you almost everything you'd ever want to know about the Star Wars Expanded Universe (which unfortunately has been declared non-canon, thanks to J.J. Abrams), and the astonishing skill to cook Minute Rice in 58 seconds. My playlist includes mostly oldies, and my favorite movies all came out before I was born. So you might say I'm a bit of a hipster. I've even got my own snazzy red Polaroid camera, which is practically a license to hipster in this day and age, right?
So, yeah, that's me. In conclusion, read on! Hope you enjoy my blog posts!
Why UR?I'm not a very decisive person. During my senior year of high school, I envied the kids who were certain straight from the get-go where they wanted to go to college. I had applied to several great schools that I thought could offer me a great education, but I had trouble picking which one was the best fit for me. I constantly held debates against myself, weighing the pros and the cons of each school in my head and occasionally and occasionally audibly voicing my concerns a la Gollum: "How about this one?" "No, no, too big. And too far away. Going back and forth to home could prove to be a real bummer." "Good point, but look at their alumni network! They could hook you up with a job fresh out of graduation!" "Ah, true, but check out these student reviews online. You really want to go to a place with this reputation?" "Do you believe everything you read in those reviews?" "Of course I do. They can't put anything on the internet that isn't true." And so on and so on. I still hadn't made a decision by mid-April, so the jury was still out on where I was going just two weeks before the deadline. Pressure from my parents and peers to choose just kept piling on heavier and heavier. Around this time I went to a Richmond Scholars visit, which afforded prospective students who'd been offered scholarships from the University the chance to get a glimpse of life as a student here. The visit was really what sealed the deal for me. The beautiful campus was a joy to explore even in the surprisingly sweltering spring heat. I had the opportunity to sit in on a class, which wasn't very big. Richmond's small class sizes allow for intimate discussions as opposed to drawling lectures and make it rather easy to develop close relationships with professors. I've found that most of them encourage you to meet with them in their spare time, something that might be more difficult to do at a larger institution. While at the Scholars visit, I talked with my host for hours. He gave me a bare bones, down-to-earth explanation of what he thought of Richmond. And I know it's a total cliche, but there's one thing he told me that I really think rings true here at Richmond and life in general: It can be a great and rewarding experience, but only if you put in the effort to make it one. Bottom line, I think Richmond gives students the resources needed to make their college years more than worthwhile, moreso than any other school I checked out. We've got top-notch academics to satisfy any hungry mind, we've got a plethora of extracurriculars to enjoy, tons of chances to broaden our horizons (literally and figuratively), and of course, we've got the chow at D-Hall. All that's really what made me want to spend the next four years of my life here.