Vagrant Journalism

Published pieces from the past, the present and of the potential future.

Posts Tagged ‘the personal essay’

8 December 2005: How I Came to Be

Posted by Christina on March 1, 2009

Christmas 1989

Christmas 1989

A stint of class-only pieces has been going on for some time, at this point, and will continue for several months. This was at the peak of my lesson learning and oh the lessons I learned. I was made to explore all kinds of forms New Journalism could take, including the personal essay. The final for my Personal Essays class was to write about an unforgettable experience we had in our lives. While I couldn’t really think of anything I could safely herald as the most memorable experience I had had up until that point, there was a story related to me and centrally focused on me that I could write about. I wrote the story of how and why I was born and though unconventional, it was still considered a personal essay.

How I Came To Be

In the 1980’s, the world was in a panic state of upheaval. Chaos and disorder reined the globe. Harmony was abandoned while yin and yang were laughed at. Balance was shaken and monotony was stirred. Reason trembled in the shadows of impulsive actions and fancy-fleeting moments, but that’s just my opinion.

The babies of the post-war era free thinkers were now ruling the world. Women turned their living rooms into workout havens and while Jane Fonda’s aerobics videos encouraged them to “go for the burn” they danced their afternoons away in legs streaked with neon colored tights. George Michael was fast becoming a world-renown gay sex symbol and rose to stardom with Wham! while some of his British brethren tied the knot across the pond bringing the likes of Princess Diana into the vulnerability and limelight of lies, rumor and speculation known as the media. Music Television exploded with The Buggles’ “Video Killed the Radio Star” as a somewhat ironic yet poignant statement to a foreshadowing of the silent war between radio and MTV in the decades to come. Steven Spielberg showcased a large part of the San Fernando Valley and how cute Drew Barrymore’s nose was and always will be in E.T. the Extra Terrestrial while the Valley produced a language all on its own, linguistically a geographical phenomenon. Dan Aykroyd awkwardly sings “We Are the World” with the rest of the Jackson Five and Madonna lies to us all, telling us she knows what it’s like to be a virgin. It was all about the bangs, the teased hair, the shoulder pads, pastel colored blazers with rolled up sleeves, jelly shoes, legwarmers, Miami Vice and CHiPs.

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