Friday, June 25, 2010


It's currently 5:52 AM, and I've been up for about an hour baking stuff for later today. I should've been done by now, except in my 5 AM-edness I made a double batch of cake mix instead of cake-mix cookies, which means the time it'll take to finish these just about tripled. I should be really annoyed right now, and I think I almost was. I was standing above the cake mix after realizing what I had done, and I remember going through the thought process in my head, trying to make myself feel annoyed (as I rightfully should have been), but I couldn't do it. I almost became annoyed at the fact that I couldn't become annoyed.

It's because of a word that I've become obsessed with: quixotic.

I heard the word for the first time in a Debate/Forensics competition I was competing in in my junior year. A duo got up and began the introduction to their piece with the word, 'quixotic,' which they described (in so many words) as having hope even when facing insurmountable odds, after which they began performing a scene from 'Angels in America' and I tuned out. I've liked the word ever since, mostly for its phonetics, actually. I like the way it sounds, and the imagery that comes to mind every time I say it or think about it.

The word itself stems from Don Quixote. "Quixotic" refers to anything Don Quixote-like (i.e chivalry, idealism, foolishness, etc). The formal definition is:

"Quixotism is impracticality in pursuit of ideals, especially those ideals manifested by rash, lofty and romantic ideas or extravagantly chivalrous action. It also serves to describe an idealism without regard to practicality. An impulsive person or act might be regarded as quixotic."

Why I've latched on to this particular word, I don't know, but it's become sort of a motto for myself. I've had it written on my arm almost all semester, as a sort of 'memo' tattoo. I think the definition sort of encompasses how I feel about life. I like the idea of being hopeful or idealistic to an impractical degree. I think everyone needs that. What's the point of being completely rational 100% of the time? Especially someone my age. I'd much rather go through this phase of my life 'pursuing rash, lofty, romantic ideals' than relegating myself to a lifetime of rationality and logic. This isn't to say that I run around in a gypsy costume telling everyone to chill out and go with the flow. Actually, I like to consider myself a very rational person. But, beneath all of my rationality, I'm an idealist. I sometimes don't like to admit it, especially around the jaded Political Science crowd, but I'm roughly 4 years old in terms of how I see the world. There is no obstacle that can't be overcome or turned into a positive experience. I've seen people overcome seemingly insurmountable odds by working hard and being positive. There are so many great stories about people that survive terrible ordeals and come out on top. Why do we ever doubt that that could (and will) be us too?

Annnd I feel like I'm rambling, so I'm gonna end before I start sounding too much like a hippie, and go frost some (annoying) cupcakes.

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