Do nothing. – The Chronicle


It has come to the purpose—the place I’m studying Walden by Thoreau of my very own volition, and type of vibing with him. Tuning into the identical frequency, as considered one of my pals would put it.

I need to say that I used to be absolutely immersed in each single phrase, phrase, and paragraph that he used to explain the motions of chopping wooden on a chilly Monday morning. I actually do, however, in fact, that may be a lie (apologies Mr. Montgomery). 

It feels fairly a little bit of time has handed since I’ve learn one thing purely only for the pleasure of studying. I can’t even say I‘ve correctly learn Walden, when, in actuality, I simply scrolled previous these 172 pages in fifteen minutes pretending I understood Thoreau’s two years, two months, and two days of transcendental revelations within the woods by the pond. I can’t even lie that I really feel responsible anymore, when it feels that each motion I take should result in some tangible, metrizable consequence, this text, a working example.

But, at a sure degree, I yearn for all the things this man has had over these two years, two months, and two days. One of the best ways I can describe this sense is, maybe, a homesickness for a spot I’ve by no means identified? A nostalgia for a tune that I’ll have by no means heard? One thing poetic with the long run excellent tense thrown in there so it sounds extra poetic? 

In the event you might swap a day with somebody who would—?

This man and his cabin please, however that type of makes me really feel like a Pinterest Thief, who’s “so in regards to the aesthetics of identical to being and actually all the things”. 

Then once more, what do I do know, I, too, am responsible of hopelessly romanticizing a retreat to a pleasant cabin within the woods and listening to Hozier, Bon Iver, and Phoebe Bridgers on-repeat whereas gazing on the sea of stars. A number of shut pals and I, surrounded by halos of mosquitos, all empty-headed and younger, a minimum of only for that one evening.

“Work onerous. Play onerous (no, Wednesday shooters isn’t a good suggestion).”

I’m certain none of us have heard that slogan earlier than, most undoubtedly not right here at Duke. 

Apply to software program internships. Work on Leetcode. Apply to bounce teams. Ship poems to literary magazines. Get rejected and—get rejected (typically, they deliberately overlook to ship the rejection letter, simply so that you get the prospect to put in writing one to your self :)). Preserve your head up? Or was it down? As a result of I do want to complete scripting this paper. In any case, good luck and take a look at once more. Revise my resume. Really feel unhappy. Wallow for thirty-three minutes, understand that’s an excessive amount of time for feelings, then, work on my CS Gradescope task that’s due tomorrow at midnight, half of the time I spend staring on the fairly syntax highlights, so I’m going to workplace hours and spend the opposite half of my time considering why tears don’t style sweeter.

I don’t even like numbers why am I counting a lot, and why does half of my main take care of them? Effectively, I suppose that’s a method of studying to handle my meals factors at WU.

Overwork, overthink, over-practically-every-humanely-possible-action. I inform myself that I’m happy with my calendar, that I spend each hour, each minute, each millisecond undertaking one thing. However I’m not. I’m not proud, and I’m a actually dangerous liar in terms of myself. 

So I’m trustworthy, I’m not at all times that optimistic stoic particular person I attempt to be at Duke, however I firmly consider these two phrases don’t contradict. 

Some days I don’t need to fill out a STINF kind, only for the sake of having the ability to inform myself, on the finish of the semester, that I by no means missed any class any day of the week (I’ll depart the validity of that assertion as much as you), as if it’s some trophy I can stuff into my imaginary field of issues I’ll by no means look via once more.

Isn’t it a bit early for sophomore/junior droop?

Yeah, it’s, and I acknowledge the immense quantity of privilege I get from even simply being right here at Duke as a sophomore, for even getting the selection to do the issues I’m doing. I’m not entitled to any of this time or area. The one purpose I even have the time and vitality to sit down right here and write is pure luck. Tiny issues stumble upon different tiny issues and, in some way, right here I’m.

However, seeing the solar, and passing time exploring my very own religion, at all times feels good, regardless of any private points I could also be understanding, a minimum of immediately’s one other day I’m lucky to name pleased with my headphones off.

Lately, I’ve been attempting to step down extra, and spend that point caring for household, pals, and (to the most effective of my capacity) myself by taking interior three-year-old me on a go to to the Gardens, glad to flee someplace bodily and quiet that’s not my dorm room.

Within the midst of all this work and chaos, I’m beginning to understand there doesn’t must be a transition to each paragraph, so I need to thanks for studying this text. I’ve just one plea to make:

In the event you ever get the time, and really feel down for it, even only for a second—

Do nothing.

And sure I do play the guitar.

Spencer Chang is a Trinity sophomore and an opinion managing editor of The Chronicle’s 118th quantity. 


Spencer Chang
| Opinion Managing Editor

Spencer Chang is a Trinity sophomore and an opinion managing editor of The Chronicle’s 118th quantity.



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