S o it’s back to school time, and ugh, college seems so pointless.
School is so totally unlike your amazingly enlightening wilderness trek into the (insert wilderness area or mountain range here) that you’ll tell everyone about with wilder-than-thou righteousness while doing your best James Franco from “127 Hours.”
I mean, what’s the point of medieval poetry after you’ve sipped from an unspoiled alpine tarn? (Lucky you didn’t get giardia.) Or calculus after seeing a griz and her cubs? (Lucky you didn’t get mauled.)
Life’s short, and you don’t want to waste another minute indoors. Or getting mauled.
But you’re a student. And your college education isn’t any more pointless than your backpacking trip or climbing or whatever. Really. So if you need help coming down from your doped-on-fresh-air reverie so you can get on with your classes when they start Monday, remember:
Remember that guy who lived in the woods and had a slightly defective typewriter?
And blew. People. UP?!?
Go ahead, keep carrying on about how stupid your psych class will be, and how these other fools don’t know bollocks about beauty because they haven’t held a trout in their bare hands and had to eat it to survive.
(Actually, you had that backpacker’s chicken curry in a pouch that you could’ve eaten, too. Yay REI!)
Yeah, go live alone in a cabin in the woods. It won’t turn you into Unabomber Jr.
Look, just stay in school, where your peers help you be normal and not send people explosives.
After your walk through the woods or whatever, you’re all up in everybody’s business about being green and shit, and you’re pretty sure your journal entries about the ecstasy of trees and spirited chipmunks prove that you’re the next John Muir.
But only your mom and your boyfriend would say that your lyrical writing bears a strong resemblance to “My First Summer in the Sierra.” So get through school, because you can’t wander the Sierra with a notebook in your rucksack your entire adult life — but you can do it on vacay from a good job.
Or apply to grad school for disembodied spiritual chipmunk poetry now.
Woohoo, you saved enough to spend the whole summer living in Camp Four at Yosemite! You were so totally old-school Valley that it’s freaking you out to buy books and roll up to Alfalfa’s blasting jam-band ghetto-electro-pop like you used to.
Maybe you should drop out of school and go big with climbing?
No, because you’re not Chris Sharma. Or Chris Sharma’s hot girlfriend.
Keep climbing. It’s sick. But while nice climbers will ask, no one really cares much what you sent this summer, just like no employer cares that you took Russian imperial history instead of the politics of southeast Asia. Your outdoor bliss isn’t better or worse than school — both are great experiences.
So keep taking classes, climb and hike, and for chrissakes, stop posting your journal entries on Facebook, we’re all tired of pretending to “like” this chipmunk-as-Buddha haiku bullshit.