On manhood, becoming, and the slow pace of time

As I was walking into work recently, I was listening to a replay of All Songs Considered’s podcast episode, “Rewind: The 90s Are Back, or Whatever…” And as I pulled my phone out of my pocket to check something, I caught a glimpse of myself and burst out laughing, because I really looked the part of the late 90s alt kid: long hair in a perfect midpart, sunglasses, cool and self-possessed. (Not too self-possessed to spend a good quarter-mile experimenting for the perfect ironic selfie, mind you.)

Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. In 1997, I was a high school sophomore, but that’s the end of the resemblance. I had no cool. I looked young for my age, I had braces, I had short hair and didn’t really care about it, I was a band and choir and theatre nerd, and I thought the Beatles were the pinnacle of musical evolution — I’m pretty sure I remember telling a cousin that his Smashing Pumpkins CD sounded like a bunch of noise. Continue reading “On manhood, becoming, and the slow pace of time”