Sunday, August 17, 2008

Country Bumpkin in the Big City

Yesterday, my old Nokia phone finally refused to charge. Of course, I was sort of pleased, since that was the last obstacle between me and an iPhone... This morning, I decided to drive down to the Apple store. As I was getting dressed, I looked at the pants that I was putting on and noticed the specks of grass that were still on them from when I weed-whacked around the pig fence yesterday afternoon. It made me feel like a country bumpkin on my way to the big city.

The strange thing was I kind of liked the feeling. I also like being a technology addict here in my small town. And I realized I also like being an American in Barcelona, and a Catalan in the US. I often worry that I don't quite fit in, but maybe it's because I don't completely want to; there are these big important parts of me that stick out, that I like having stick out. I remember when I was little, my sisters would tease me for watching bowling on TV and eating prunes (back before they were dried plums). These were things most 8-year-olds didn't do, but they were totally me.

And I suppose the only reason it's curious is because I spend a fair bit of time wondering if I belong anywhere, and often feel a bit like an alien. Probably much of the problem is imagining that anyone could fit in a box labeled "country bumpkin" or "technology addict"; no-one is that one-sided. But I do think that part of my alienation (though that's a strong word) comes from liking very disparate things: sewing and PHP, bowling and local food, politics and pumpkins.

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