Cameron Haffner Featured Posts The Freshman Experience

Going The Distance

Welcome back, kids! It's another day in the life of classes and college livin'. Another week full of responsibilities and early morning macchiatos. Another month of changing weather and fluctuating relationships. Another year of- "hey wait a second there blogger guy, it's only been a month!" Gee, you're right, fellow reader, I've seem to of got ahead of myself there.

But perhaps we all get ahead of ourselves from time to time? I mean, it's hard not to think of the future. You may wonder what you're going to be doing ten years from now, where you're going to live, and how you're going to afford it all. All of these concerns seem to deal with distance and time.


Our distance and constant motion through space allows us to watch the world around us move at a certain velocity relative to our specific position in space-time. Space-time permits any certain event to occur within the dimensions of space at a particular time. When we look up at the stars at night, we are looking into the past at the light those stars emitted 1,000 light years ago.

"Uh Cameron, this is all well and good but I still don't understand what this has to do with my future."

Need to know ma future


Well just as the sky is a window into the archaeology of the universe, so does the lives of others serve the same purpose to our own selves.

Through other people and their past experiences, we learn to shape our own identities. You may decide that from listening to the past stories of an elder, friend, or outsider that you should be a more loving person or less of a pessimist. From this, we create our own personal philosophies that we hope to guide us through this unpredictable, crazy life.

I'd say we owe lots of these virtues to the stories we've absorbed from novels, songs, films, and interactive video games. Stories allow us to communicate, connect, and change the way we think about the world. They provide the opportunity to "walk in someone else's footsteps," as those Chinese proverb dudes would say. Characters like Indiana Jones, Jay Gatsby, Zelda, and Kermit the Frog remain memorable because of how universally resonant and compelling they are.

These figures are fictitious creations yet they all feel so real to someone like me. When I see Indie retracting from a chamber of snakes but barely flinching in a bar fight, I understand that's what makes him so fully realized and real. When I watch how Kermit can at once be making a joke and then contemplating his own existence, I understand that this is what makes him feel so real to me.

It's not easy being green


I bet we can all recall some character or story that has had some personal impact on us. Stories are a big part of our lives. They feed the proverbial campfire. They can start cultural movements. They even shape our identities, perspectives, and futures. Stories are windows into our own humanity. Yepp, that's right. Cameron just did the unexpected and brought this article full circle on y'all.

We're all trying to make sense of everything that doesn't make sense. Of course it isn't fair that people should live in poverty, receive unequal wages, or pay thirteen dollars for a cup of coffee. But this also means that we can't just give up by throwing our hands up in the air and saying "it's all relative, there's too many problems and nothing matters anyway." Maybe... the fact that nothing makes sense actually makes sense due to how we make sense of the senseless-ness nature of things!



Yeah! I mean think about it...every character in every story has to find meaning within themselves to complete their individual arc just as every person has to make sense of their own independent situations. Maybe meaning directly depends on our perspectives?

This poses some interesting questions. Is there no one right way to live? Can you adopt multiple meanings to your life? Is meaning purely subjective? Who knows. I don't have all the answers. I'm not sure anyone does. But hey, lets not get ahead of ourselves here.

So maybe we can't approximate, calculate, or see into the future.

But perhaps all we need to do is just take a glimpse into the stories of our past and let the stars guide us along our way so that we may hopefully make sense of it all.