VOTE to help me choose an ESSAY TOPIC

<p>I’ve written a few half-drafts, and I don’t think my essays highlight my positive qualities (probably because they are mostly recycled from other assignments!). Would you rather read an essay that indirectly refers to:</p>

<li><p>Not being afraid to leave comfort zone;</p></li>
<li><p>Finding new opportunities and becoming passionate immediately;</p></li>
<li><p>Intensity, excitement around strangers and friends; or</p></li>
<li><p>Having an open mind, aesthetically and academically?</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Specifically, I’m thinking about writing on:</p>

<p>A. Being pigeonholed by school, friends as a gay liberal</p>

<p>B. Being a math/lit girl. Weirdness of writing proofs in poem form, or various experiences of being sorta isolated as a math-loving girl.</p>

<p>C. Recently becoming religious and what that has done to my thoughts</p>

<p>D. Love/hate relationship with debate, and how that relates to my multiracial background.</p>

<p>Thoughts?</p>

<p>Help please!! I’ve become so mired in my own writing that I can’t make a clear decision!</p>

<p>umm...here's some advice: Don't "recycle" old material and try to force it into something its not. You should start from a clean slate, pick a topic that you feel you can write the best essay on, and then go from there.</p>

<p>That's what I'm doing-- starting pretty much from scratch. The stuff I was recycling was actually good, and appropriate-- application essays that got me into an intense summer program-- but it wasn't working too well.</p>

<p>I like 1/A</p>

<p>I like 1/D and C</p>

<p>B could work well.</p>

<p>i like 1a & 1d. Its really hard to say not knowing what the prompt is</p>

<p>I like B. I kinda did something like that for my Georgetown essay, but with Spanish and Medicine</p>

<p>Thanks for all your feedback. I think I'm sending this to Harvard EA. I haven't decided if it should be the common app essay or the optional one-- probably doesn't matter. I'm also sending the math/lit essay. Any criticism is greatly appreciated...</p>

<p>Today at lunch, the Gay-Straight Alliance (I’ve lost half the audience to whispered conversations) is having a meeting (there goes another quarter) in Mrs. Hamilton’s room. We will have a special guest-- Laura Allen graduated from Poly last year and is now a first-year at Wesleyan. She is living in a completely gender-blind (all eyes narrow) dorm (eyebrows contort), the first (on cue: everyone ****s their head to the side a bit) of its kind (whispers continue) in the country (snort. titter. move around in your seats… MAKE NOISE). Laura will lead a discussion on her experience (my best friend averts her eyes). Everyone is welcome, please come! (The tech crew starts up the laugh track)</p>

<p>I move away from the podium, but before I take two steps the next announcement begins with, “What do they call each other, “it”?” This comes from the teacher of “Human Sexuality & Relationships.” But nobody’s listening to the next announcement. Everyone’s shifting their weight, talking to their friends, buzzing with excitement and blatant hostility. Fantastic— I’m the new Smith College on campus! I’ve never seen students this agitated in Morning Meeting before. Frankly, I am terrified… yet I feel like a terrorist. When I look into the eyes, I’m a predator, an intruder into their happy, pink-and-blue lives.</p>

<p>Before that morning, I hadn’t known what it is like to be perceived as “unlike.” My world was one of “Like”- I was like everyone else, everyone liked me, I liked everyone. People knew that I'm straight and proud of my femininty. Because of a single “radical” announcement, people who I thought were my friends started laughing at my jokes in a different way. Instead of all-out laughter, their giggles changed to low chuckles of tolerance, as if they were thinking, “Funny, but the weird gay genderless body is trying to infiltrate my life with a joke. I had better resist it.” Crowds, that morning, slowly parted to let me pass in a horrible undulating motion- like the Red Sea, but Hellish rather than Heavenly. I felt guilty, as if I was the anti-Moses- trying to enslave rather than liberate. The cause I was discussing (not, alas, supporting) was liberation from gendered norms. The irony is not lost on me.</p>

<p>A few months later, I still find it difficult to shake off the perceptions which were molded and shackled to me that strange spring day. I have nightmares about seas smirking at me with self-indulgent smiles, and sometimes I wake up thinking, Will it happen again? It’s been a whole summer in the life of a teenager—an eternity for an idealistic young person slowly taunted by thoughts of a career, a marriage, a reputation. I’ve become haunted by religion, but I stay quiet to let my newfound convictions strengthen with age and contemplation. Even some who proofread this essay told me that I’d be laughed out of the door, as a Catholic who supports gay rights: a paradox, they said. A joke. Well, at least I’m a thought-provoking paradox, and apparently quite a funny joke.</p>

<p>Thanks to all who participated in the GSA discussion with Laura yesterday. She was so impressed by the intelligent conversation we had about grassroots activism and false perceptions. I'm so glad that people of all different opinions came together and had a civil discourse. The next meeting will be next week; please come.</p>