Having the Foresight to Reject Hindsight

Having the Foresight to Reject Hindsight

If hindsight is 20/20, then I’ve been functioning at 20/70 for far too long. At least, that’s what I realized when I was given contacts for the first time and my perspective jumped from VHS to HDTV in just a matter of eye pokes. Instead of being thrilled by my new crisper, 3-dimensional vision that all the kids have been raving about, I resented the new change in my daily routine. After all, I loved my VHS tapes.

Six business days later, my glasses came in and my spirits lifted. Daria. Tina Fey. Mother Teresa. By my standards, I was finally inducted into a special club for great women, whose success in gender politics can be measured by their choice in eyewear (take that the pro contact patriarchy).

But when my excitement wore down and I realized that I was no closer to becoming Liz Lemon, I noticed that something bigger and more pressing had been obstructing my view. Much like my vision, my perspective since graduation has been completely near-sighted.

In the past, staying present was hard. I liked looking ahead at the vague shapes in front of me and planning how they would mirror my future. Internships, friendships, teacher-mentor ships, these were just a means to achieving the fruit of my hard work. I had no doubt that I could be a screenwriter and would be ready for any challenge ahead of me.

Well, I’m two months in and my future looks hazier than ever. I can barely see what’s ahead of me and not just because my glasses are foggy from the summer humidity. I’m near-sighted because I don’t have the foresight to know what I want anymore. Are the hoops to work in entertainment worth it? Is selling and possibly changing my art going to bring me any personal satisfaction? Could I really be happy following a career path that only helps myself?

What I realized is that I made choices that led to one path without realizing whether I would regret them. After all, as a child actress I’ve been involved in entertainment my whole life. At what point does it become entertaining?

As usual I have no answers but am finally asking myself the right questions. I love writing, but I can expand what that means. I have stories to tell, but I can choose who I tell them too.

Instead of regretting my lack of hindsight, I accept the challenge of finding a clearer perspective. I will try to explore other interests and other destinations until I find the life I want. I will enhance my sight so that when I drive, I’m no longer a danger to those who share the road. I will not blame the past and lose sight of the future. Yes, I still don’t particularly care for the present but at least I have choices. Glasses or Contacts? It depends on the day.

Forgiving the iPod for killing my walkman (although that wasn’t very nice)

Adults like to tell me that I’m an old soul. It’s been that way since I was 6 and watching The Simpsons for its political commentary through my tween/teen years when I had written off Hilary Duff and JBiebs in favor of Crosby, Still, Nash, and Young. Needless to say, the technological boom that had brought us the iPod went over my head. I was content with my walkman and found the prospect of downloading hundreds of songs into a tiny slender box to be stage one of the robot apocalypse. If I was to use the green mini that my Aunt Gail had bought me for Hanukah, it was to listen to The Beatles or Greenday pre-American Idiot. After all, good music had ended in 1998.

Flash forward to now. The robot apocalypse is moving along nicely into iPhone stage 6. I’ve just graduated from college with a media arts and culture degree, a passion for comedic screenwriting, and an appreciation for a wide range of modern music (does Kanye circa 2004 count?) Recently, I’ve realized that technology has changed the world in ways both positive and negative and maybe we didn’t need those 8 more seconds of attention span after all. Really, I’ve committed to being more open to learning, to Benjamin Button my ol’ soul and see the laptop as half-charged. After all, Netflix has allowed me to rewatch Reality Bites, and Spotify has given me access to the entire CSNY discography (still no Beatles but I can wait). Most importantly, the internet has given me the ability to publically embarrass my parents with the photo below:

My parents as teenagers in the good ol' days. (1973?)
My parents as teenagers during the good ol’ days. (1973?)

And on that note readers, how many fives of you might be out there on the other side of the web, I officially grant my iPod amnesty. I will always miss the joy that the walkman brought me, but will forever have the memories downloaded onto my old soul.