Teaching this topic is among my favorite things to do in life, for a few reasons: for one, I spent three years studying them with a phenemonal professor; for another, the discussion of personal essays almost always boils down to a discussion of the search for some coherent sense of self–and what’s more compelling, and universal, than that?
Among the essays my class read was a favorite oldie of mine (introduced, of course, by that professor): Katha Pollitt’s Learning to Drive.
He’s built up this reputation for himself as “the player,” but I see past the façade.
He’s been a great friend, and I know he’s a very kind person.
Of course, that was when she met her soulmate and knew it something …
You may think that 37% chance is not very good, but there are no other strategies that you can consistently follow that will produce a higher average probability of choosing the best of all candidates.
When I don’t hear from him for a few hours, for example, rather than picturing him absorbed in a book, sending emails or taking a walk, I am likely to leap directly to an image of him suddenly realizing me to be an anxious, unlovable narcissist with untamable hair, incurable insomnia and (eventually! Compounding the anxiety of such moments is the attendant shame: the feeling that I don’t Except when it is.
* I recently had the privilege of teaching a Personal Essay class at The Loft.
” “Of course,” he replied, looking down at me and some snow-dusted sidewalk edging Powderhorn Park. Not just acceptable, but desirable: in theory, at least, I am opposed to co-dependent relationships; I am in favor of maintaining independence and a full, dynamic life outside of a partnership, of spending solid chunks of time apart. Among the traits that Rob and I share is a sort of unwillful transparency: it is very difficult to be around either of us and not know, immediately, what we’re thinking or feeling.
As a result, when we’re together, I have the comfort of knowing where’s he’s at.