Un-smoking

Have you ever felt tired, a little bored, excited and good all at the same time?

When I took Intro to Creative Writing my freshman year, I didn’t feel this mysterious sense of connection with the rest of the class as I’m currently feeling with my Fiction Writing I class. Throughout my entire college ‘career’ up till now, I’ve never been real friends with my fellow English majors. Sure, I had friends who ‘happened’ to be English majors, but none of them were friendships because we’re English majors. Up until 2 days ago. Isn’t it strange how sometimes within 2 seconds of talking to someone, you are able to tell if you are going to actually be real friends with this person or a mere acquaintance?

In my efforts to step out of this box that I believe I’ve been scratching at for a long time for a way out, for 10 minutes, I became a part of something new today. I stood in a circle of smokers, not smoking next to the other only non-smoker in the group. He told me that this isn’t even stepping out of the box, this is simply peering outside my own box into someone else’s box and that somehow this peering would lead to something greater, something better. I tried to not feel awkward. It was bright. I squinted my eyes. I pulled up the sleeves of my hoodie to my elbows and then pulled them back down the next minute. Rinse and repeat. I’m not sure if it was because the wind was getting chilly or if I was simply looking for something to do with my hands. I wondered why none of the regulars had brought up the fact that they had a new addition to their group – a non-smoker girl who writes stories that are too sweet for their tastes. I felt incredibly out-of-place as I listened in on their conversation about which of us would most likely be a gangster and who has never been in a bar fight. Maybe they felt like it was so strange that I was there that they decided to not even bring it up. Or maybe he had warned the others before hand. Later that day during French class he told me that their “Post-Fiction class smokers” conversation was not up to standards because the stories that we had read for the day were also of inferior quality. I’m not sure if I should join in on next week’s sessions. Would he invite me again? Would it start getting less weird? But then again, there’s only 2 more weeks of class, exactly 6 more periods of Fiction Writing I with Prof. Lyons. Despite being quite fed-up with school work at this point, I’m leaving this semester, no, this fiction class, with a small sense of regret, wishing that I had been bolder in getting to know these people outside of the pieces of their souls that they had handed out to the entire class to poke, to pick and to tear at in the form of their short stories.

It is 12*C outside and both my room windows are open. The heater is turned off, I think, unless my other housemate turned it back on, yet I’m feeling a little too warm and a little too tired. 

My body has a severe reaction to alcohol and I’m not interested in smoking. What’s left? Drugs and gambling? How else am I to be a great writer? Perhaps without any of the above but a healthy dose of depression and aging. Now who would like to be a part of this journey? I don’t think I would like to do grad school. Sure, I’ve barely done any research. Sure, I’m half-making this decision based on my current emotions and state of mind. Sure, I’m not even 22, I don’t know better. But that’s also why I want to wait tables for a year, work on a farm, collect my own eggs, make my own butter, own a haven which provides a steady supply of beverages, muffins, kittens, yarn balls, crochet hooks, knitting needles, well-worn out books and pockets of space for writers and readers alike to retreat into. Chargers for the soul.

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