i remember standing outside the auditorium during my first fall at moorhead senoir high. we were preparing to audition for 'the sound of music' and i was watching all the juniors and seniors around me. they were talking about who might get what part and other shows they had done; they seemed to know what was going on and to fit in. i was a nerdy little freshman with a lame haircut and my shirt tucked in. i got the role of a nazi; i ran across the stage near the end of the show.
it felt like i had things figured out in junior high--as well a jr. high student can, anyway. but this new world brought with it three more years of people that i didn't know. with only two years in the jr. high it was pretty easy to get to the top. these people had more experience and took cooler classes, they knew each other for a while and also knew the teachers; and they could drive.
but somehow i gradually rose to through the ranks. even as a freshman i started working on the lighting crews [just being up in the catwalks held with it a certain amount of authority, perceived or otherwise]; we made friends with the older kids and somehow moved into being 'upperclassmen' ourselves. we started running things, learning how to take advantage of all that was out there, and had a ton of fun in the process. by the fall of our senior year, we were the ones with the lead roles [well, jon had the lead his junior year], we owned the place, and we were the ones who convinced everyone to not wear underwear on the opening night. [my brother proudly showed his friend the memorial we had left in the years that followed]
the mission in japan was much the same, starting as a weiner and being halfway amazing by the end.
and college was the same again.
my first few semesters were really difficult. i knew that people were out there making movies somewhere, i knew that people were going on dates, and i knew there were cool jobs i could get if only i knew where to start--but i didn't. i wanted to go out and conquer the world, i just didn't know in what direction.
same story: in a gradual move things started to work out. i got not one but three jobs, all cooler than those i dreamed of as a freshman, i went on some rad dates, and i changed from little guy holding the boom mic to having to turn down offers to shoot a movie because i was too booked. and drank 400+ bottles of apple beer with some really great roommates.
then i moved on again.
which brings me to here.
i am back at the start of the next phase, whate'er it may be. i want to go out and drink fully from it all, but am a little confused on where 'it' is hidden this time.
but it is comforting to remind myself that, while this is the biggest step yet, i have successfully made the steps before. it just takes time.