Oh, sweet Lord, I’ve started blogging again. Why? Boredom? Conceit? Selfish disdain for the taint such an endeavor might bring upon the minds of potential readers? Who knows. But enough speculation. Let me talk a little bit about myself, because that’s what I get to do on my blog:
A few months ago, after a long day of skimming Lamebook and napping, I decided to check my email. There, nestled among offers to enhance my male member, was the Acceptance Letter. After months of painstakingly creating university informational sheets, complete with program descriptions and professor profiles, I had gotten my first acceptance letter to graduate school. The hours I had poured into formulating academic CVs and penning admissions essays had finally paid off! I was accepted somewhere! It didn’t matter that this school was at the bottom of my list–I got IN!
Puffed up with the confidence of getting accepted, I pompously checked my email every morning, just waiting for the acceptance letters to roll on in. And boy, did the letters roll in. Unfortunately, they were all rejections. My buoyant spirits punctured, I faced the harsh reality of having to enroll in a program that, honestly, I didn’t know much about because it was so far down my extremely long list of potential schools, and, because of its very nature, threw off my plans by two years. I was crushed as I saw my future crumble in front of my eyes.
I was, however, encouraged by the incredulous looks I got from family, friends, and strangers when I mentioned where I was going. Getting into this particular school was quite a feat for someone coming from a po-dunk, backwoods university whose athletics were far more famous than its academics. I thought to myself that, maybe, this wouldn’t be such a horrible experience after all.
That was until family, friends, and strangers began to comment on where I would be living.
“Oh, that’s a great school! Congratulations! You know, my cousin visited that campus and the city a few years ago. She was robbed and killed on the way back to her hotel. Anyway, good luck!”
“Wow, good for you! I know you’ll do well there. Say, did you know the rape statistics in that city are off the charts? OK, see you later!”
What were they talking about? The city is a center of innovation and culture. It’s home to the highest number of Nobel laureates in the world, as well as many notable politicians, artists, musicians, and actors. It boasts some of the best museums in the country, and has arguably the best dining scene. What’s there to be afraid of..?
My paranoia took over. I read story after story online of muggings, stabbings, and drive-bys. I looked up numbers and percentages and triangulated areas for drug sales and prostitution. I read email after cautionary email from my new university about petty theft and violent crime on and around campus. I watched “The Untouchables,” “Road to Perdition”, and “Chicago.” Teeth chattering, I tried to comfort myself by reasoning that my new university employs the second largest private police force in the world, and that the news I was reading was only news because it happened so infrequently. Right…?
I took a Krav Maga seminar in April. I played soccer in high school. I am a pretty good screamer. That is pretty much the extent of my ability to defend myself. I refuse to get a weapon, as I am not a fan of violence…and probably wouldn’t have the stones to use one, anyway.
And so, I move to my new home unarmed, uninitiated, and friendless. This blog is about the adventures of a small town girl in the big city. I hope hilarity ensues. This might end up being about me afraid to leave my house. It’s not really paranoia, guys. It’s just caution. Extreme caution. Extreme caution that might be manageable with medication. No judgment, please.
Either way, advice and self-defense tips are welcome.