This Is What the World Tastes Like

(Hello universe! I miss blogging! Love, Jen)

Attention conservation notice: an account of a social media lunch at an unlikely spot, and how it made me feel.

This morning at 11:30 was a lunch event at a local college, Warren Wilson, a private university known for its pro-environment practices. It was respectful, open-minded, open-hearted outreach from a college that openly admitted a history of shunning technology, a history that’s now been replaced by eco-hippie students tending electronic sea gardens  on Facebook.

WWC wanted to get with the program and asked some local social media types to come out for lunch. Representing Broke-Ass Underemployed College Students Unsure How They Got On This List, I attended.

It was lovely. There was a little blowhardery and a little self-promotion, but mostly there were curious, community-minded people looking for ways to support an effort they wanted to learn more about, Warren Wilson’s Mountain Green Sustainability Conference.

The fed us on campus-grown greens with local goat cheese, organic bread and locally made herb dressing. The event’s facilitator said he used to look for the cheapest way to feed people at college events, but now can’t image any other way than feeding people with sustainably produced local food.

There was cold water and Georgia peaches on ice. To me hospitality is simplicity and abundance, and I found both here and was given pause to consider adding sustainability to my list.

The WWC people were wonderful hosts — polite, not pushing an agenda but rather asking and listening, taking notes. And I thought to myself, Is this what the real world tastes like?

I’ve been studying in my ivory tower for so long I can’t remember the last event like this I said yes to. And all this time there was friends and sunshine and good food and a feeling of respectful mutual help and learning.

Maybe there’s more to the world than just jumping right into an advanced degree as soon as I graduate this winter. (THIS WINTER!!!) Maybe I want to be turned loose in the fields of reality for a bit, go to luncheons, go to conferences, meet people, talk and listen, learn, rest, think, play in fields of data and connection and knowledge, but less formally.

Spend some time being sure of my direction and not just charging forward, desperate for progress.

It can’t be a bad idea to rejoin society for a bit before racing off for an MFA, can it?

Check this salad out:


(Photo courtesy of my friend Don Mak)

4 responses to “This Is What the World Tastes Like

  1. Hey Jen. Glad to see you blogging again. I sorta thought Twitter had swallowed you up. ;-)

    An MFA in Journalism…or something new?

  2. Hey Wilson! Something new!: MFA in Visual Communication, Graphic Design, similar. I do need to write an update my friend!

  3. Hey Jen,

    School is one of those things that can be very hard to do if something else big comes along.

    I was 32 when I started my MFA program. It was definitely worth the wait, but I feel very fortunate that I was able to do it at all. Had I known that I was going to have had a kid, move, quit a job, and start a business during my program, I may have never done it in the first place.

    But I’m so glad I did.

    By the way, you might consider my not-so-normal Alma Mater, Vermont College.



  4. It sounds like it was a really interesting experience, and if it got you thinking new ways, too, well, that’s win-win.

    Welcome back!

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