Back For The First Time

Hey there, semi-loyal cyber-fans. It’s been a while.

A long, long while, since I last touched this blog. Trust me, I have excuses, decent ones even: what with study abroad, I’ve been hunting for things to prioritize above my online presence. It hasn’t been too difficult. I hung out in some rural places, returned to a simpler age. I even read The Wind in the Willows.

Lord, it was quite a time, and like I usually say, I’ll probably tell you all about it very, very slowly. The past year shook me up in all the right ways, an invaluable feeling, but I’m glad it ended what it did. I need at least a few years to mull. The heavy meal demands digestion.

As I expected, I’ve returned to Denver full of “worldly knowledge,” which, though valuable, exposes the bareness of my, you know, real-life knowledge, the things you learn if you don’t happen to be a globe-trotting child of privilege, jobless liberal arts jack-off in the world’s one-percent (read: any person or family who makes over $34,000 a year). So I’ll stick around the States for at least the next 3-4 years, not for any distaste for what I saw abroad (quite the opposite), but for the disconnect I feel between me and the national reality in whose belly I grew to be.

Contrary to all these valuable lessons, I’m spending this summer back at Webolutions writing web content (paid) and at the Colorado Democratic Party badgering people for contributions (guess). Two offices, air-conditioned, with wonderful staffs, though human interaction is hardly the centerpiece of either job. I’m lucky for both of these positions, and I’m learning.

Work is work, except when it’s unpaid. Webolutions has allowed me to enter pseudo-semi-self-sufficiency, and I’m really grateful. Example of Kerry feeling independent: I wouldn’t have been able to fly to the Tierra del Fuego during my last few weeks in Argentina if I hadn’t been spending a few days a month down there locked away in my room writing SEO blog posts. Webolutions has also taught me valuable office skills, like Googling It To Figure Out How It Works, or Slaying The Artistry Of Language With Keywords, or Looking Professional In Costco Clothes. (These build greatly on my main credential when I started the job a year ago, Pretending To Know What I’m Talking About.)

Unpaid work, though, should mean more. Not that there haven’t been some good things learned from the Colorado Dems–writing a press release, getting coffee for a few state senators and reps, answering phone calls from grumpy seniors–but I think I, like many, was a little too seduced by that sad little title, “Intern.” I know that the internship is “A Great Opportunity” and “A Good Thing For The Resume,” but I feel at a crossroads. Sure I’m an intern, but I’m also just a volunteer. If I’m going to give my time away, softening my ass at a desk while uploading calendar events isn’t high on my list. Get me to a food bank. Get me to a homeless shelter.

I’ve lost a lot of trust in politics, not from this internship, but from everything of the past year. Too many secrets, shrouded in Tweets and rhetoric. Even the most respectable news outlets, my trust in them is fading.

I might become a social worker. Before becoming a teacher, that is. I’m not sure. I’ve been trying to figure all this out. Tanzania rattled me.

In the meantime, I’m trying to sate my journalism fetish by doing a little freelance work on my own. Stay tuned for upcoming posts (and VIDEOS) about the Denver Light Rail system, the used bookstore business on Broadway Street, and other topics. I’m still working on those first few projects.

Also, this blog may become less obsessed with world affairs. It’s hard to trust what you hear about those, too. But if you’re bored, go watch the documentary Dirty Wars by journalist Jeremy Scahill. You won’t trust anything you hear for weeks.

Much love.

Kerry Martin

My current skepticism. Source: SiliconRepublic.com. Also, source: Back For The First Time.

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