This September, the writers of The Post Calvin will again follow a theme. If you are a regular reader or writer, you may remember our January theme, “resolutions,” or our May theme, “beasts.” We enjoy writing around themes occasionally because it can inspire fresh ideas, it creates a more cohesive conversation on the blog, and because we just love to see the creativity everyone uses in making the theme their own.
This month’s theme could use a little explaining. It doesn’t fit in just one word, and it’s a bit more specific than other months.
Our September theme is “millennials in thirty things.”
The Post Calvin is made up, as our tag line quips, of thirty writers under the age of thirty. We all, regardless of your specific definition of the word, fit into the category “millennials.” Our blog is focused on representing what it’s like to lead the life of a young liberal arts school grad in today’s culture. So our theme this month, really, gets at the heart and soul of what this blog aims to do.
So why thirty things? Well, there are thirty of us, of course. And the “things” came about from a discussion our advisory board had this summer. We were enjoying a beautiful Michigan summer night on the porch, sipping drinks and snacking on cherries and hummus and cake (what, your board meetings aren’t this fun?) when talk moved to admiration of some of our host’s plates, cups, trays, napkins, and other such party and culinary trinkets. She and I both share an affinity for “things.” You might call it “stuff” or “junk” or “clutter,” but I know there are many of us in this world who take genuine pleasure from a fine teacup or an antique camera or a good pair of broken-in leather shoes. These are the “things” of our daily lives that define who we are.
Anyone with a background in literature or history or cultural studies will recognize this sentiment as “thing theory.” Here, read the (short) Wikipedia entry. While entire books have been written on the subject, we’d like to boil it down. Each writer this month will be choosing an object that he or she thinks represents millennials (the commonly accepted name for anyone currently between the ages of about fifteen and thirty). The writer will muse on the thing, perhaps explaining why she thinks it’s important or raising questions about whether it should be. Or perhaps someone will choose an object he thinks metaphorically represents millennials in some way.
Whatever paths we writers take, we hope you enjoy hearing about the stuff in our lives.
Abby Zwart (’13) teaches high school English in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She spends her free time making lists of books she should read, cooking, and managing the post calvin.