nat's dinosaur exhibit


it's hard to write through a weirdly unprecedented change within yourself, and more off-putting to start putting those words to print—as it were, at least, since this is just a text file. i think it's difficult to pin art or anything of the sort made in times like these on that conflict, and even more uncomfortable to mention that conflict as part of the reason why, if it is great, why that art has so much meaning. struggling through life shouldn't be the axis by which great art is judged.

and i'm not equating these mutterings as great art by any means; they're really just an expressway for my own thoughts and reactions to my environment. but this one feels more meaningful because of that adversity.

but in walking aimlessly, back and forth a five mile stretch of an annoyingly monotonous stretch of pavement through lovely middle america, so sprawled as to be inherently violent, i've come to many realizations—though it rarely clears my mind like it used to anymore. i don't think i can maintain a lot of my drives towards creative paths as i wish i could, at least with who i am right now; being stunted isn't a concern, it is simply my inability to keep pressing. i like to think that i've been continually evolving, but i've been stagnant for quite some time, and i've only recently shaken to my core who i am and who i aspire to become. where i am, who i am, how i am perceived, everything has finally felt validated by identifying as someone that others cannot begin to see yet.

there was a moment that hit me especially, when on a whim stopping by a recital with my family. among the talent in a diverse array of young people—among whom was someone who played für elise without sheet music, another who sang more effortlessly and poignantly than i do alone, a flautist with enough bravado to perform for what felt like half the set, and my two younger relatives playing piano better than i likely ever will—was someone who couldn't have been older than thirteen, playing a segment from the undertale soundtrack on piano. it wasn't even anything technically proficient, but simply hearing it out of the context of who i've become was gut-wrenching. i had to keep appearances, for whatever socially ingrained reason's been made up, but i haven't stopped thinking about it since.

and i wish i could cry when i realize that that was the first moment i've known without a shadow of a doubt, in and around the very people who i don't think would give it a second. ever since that same socialization happened back in middle school, when crying at the very thought of upsetting anyone in that network's expectations, or of upsetting the path i'd wished for myself, became a stone-faced, made-up façade through high school to now, i haven't been me. not yet, at least.

so what i'm saying is frailty is a must-listen, and celeste is a must-play. i'll write more about each of them soon. because all i'm getting at is that gender is made up.