I mentioned in the last post briefly about the fact that most of my local social group skews younger than me. Let’s talk a bit more on that topic
Because I’ve forgotten what I originally wanted to say about Kuromukuro and the first thing that comes to mind is Kennosuke.
For those of you who are unaware of the main plot of Kuromukuro, Kennosuke is a for-real samurai that was put in cryogenic sleep and is woken up in time for modern day 3dCG mecha action. The show spends a majority of the time taking advantage of that fact, with Kennosuke trying desperately to adjust to his new environment and customs. Spoons exist. So do roombas. Underwear tends to be a thing these days. Please don’t make a fundoshi out of the main girl’s towel. Kennosuke, a baseball bat is not worn at the waist like a samurai sword. Please stop rolling up the sleeves of your school uniform. Kennosuke, you fucking dork. You don’t go seeking relationship advice off of Yahoo Answers. Stop that, please.
I’m not really saying that I fully connect with Kennosuke’s predicament, but I do understand one thing about him: he feels displaced. The world has advanced without him knowing, and everyone he used to know is most certainly dead by now. He’s completely alone in a modern, confusing interconnected world. That can somehow stuff people into little boxes that can talk. Smartphones. I’m talking about FaceTime.
After a very harrowing two and a half years down the drain at university, I had to move back to my mom’s place and start over again at a local junior college. Similarly, I feel, I do not belong in this place. A study group meant to motivate me to pay attention to class morphed into me tutoring the rest of the story group on concepts that were very simple for me to understand. Classes were lax on both standards and homework, two things that certainly were a lot more stringent in university, so seeing the people around me, of all ages, struggle with material I could so easily digest made me feel weird. More specifically, I feel like I don’t deserve to be here. The problem, of course, is that I deserve to be here. For now, at least.
I’ve learned by now that the more rigorous academic environments of university settings tend to not be kind to students who can’t uphold their GPA, and while I can easily say that the material I learn in junior college is quite easy, I can’t honestly say that I’m on top of all of my work. I tend to put things off. I’m a perfectionist. I also spent a majority of my school life lacking the motivation needed to even get started on any given assignment. I tend not to talk to people or ask for any help. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, I put myself at a disadvantage from the start. Either my work was complete, or it wasn’t even started.
This also explains my writing process. Once I get started, I have to finish. There’s no going around that. If I stop in the middle of the process, there’s the big chance that I’ll either scrap what I’m working on in frustration or just never revisit the project ever again, since I’m uncomfortable with dealing with unfinished works. That’s why most of my posts ship with grammatical mistakes or spelling errors, because if I were to do it in the middle of the writing process I would stall immediately. I have to keep going. But, I have to get started first before I can even get going, and that’s the real bitch to deal with, especially when you’re depressed. I mean, this isn’t to excuse me from any responsibility over my own inactions, but one thing you must understand about depression is that it doesn’t necessarily mean that the victim feels sad. It means that the victim has trouble feeling. Empathizing. Showing, expressing, or even holding interest in doing things.
But I digress.
It wouldn’t really hit me exactly how displaced I was from the rest of my high school graduating class until I started volunteering at my old high school’s speech and debate team as an advisor/coach/thing for the past few months. I graduated from that school five years ago. This means that I know absolutely none of these students that I’m currently looking after prior to me wandering in on that first day. That’s not to rag on them, they’re a friendly and motivated bunch, but as I looked outwards to a courtyard I used to spend lunchtime at, sitting on chairs and writing on desks that I took for granted all those years ago, the feeling really hit home. I’m alone here. I’ve been left behind. Mostly of my own doing, but at some point I have to quit blaming myself and admit that this was to some extent uncontrollable.
Admitting that my failure was uncontrollable is a scary thing, however, because it implies that I really, truly had no chance to improve my life all those years ago, and that the odds were stacked against me all along, and that I really, truly had no chance at staying on the fast track of the whole “graduate college with a bachelors and a well-paying job straight out of school” fantasy that most of us Millennials grew up believing. I’d love to go back in time and try to redo my university years, or even the later stages of my high school years, if it meant avoiding the hole that I put myself in at this moment. But that’s just not how it works. What’s happened has happened. I’m stuck here until I decide what I want to do from now on. I can only look forward.
But it’ll be small steps before I can fully appreciate the position I’m in now, much like the slow crawl it takes for Kennosuke to finally understand how to live in the modern age. So what if my life seems to have been displaced at least five years? That’s nothing compared to being displaced thousands of years. Maybe if I look at it that way, I don’t have it so bad, after all.