Preparing for the unexpected – By @melinaflp
By Melina Filippidou
Preparing for the unexpected
Since our very first touch, SCA has been giving me pieces of information and tasks that make me go “huh?” and engage in exhausting little dialogues in my head:
– I can’t do this
-Yes you can
– I’m hungry
-No you’re not,
etc. I currently think of SCA as an ordinary-free zone where predictability dies (ironically enough, what’s more predictable than death?). Let Marc have mercy on that soul.
My first “huh?” occurred when I found out about the SCA location. I haven’t been to a church in ages, let alone having fun in one. But shit happens all the time, so for the next 10 months, every single morning will be finding me in a Brixton church, having arguments with the annoying, self-confident version of me who always has to be right. I hate her! She’s been bullying me since I turned 18, especially when big challenges come up and I tend to overreact. Like when I received the How-to-Prepare-for-your-first-day-at -SCA e mail:
-OMG 8 books? Seriously?
-Just grow up and read the damn books
I figured I should listen to her for once. Just to shut her up. So I got the books, I asked a friend to teach me how to use the Adobe programs (the poor guy), and I am now writing my first SCAb. And I’m left with the passion project. I am planning to work on my project during my vacation, because I want it to be part of my happy, carefree moments and not something I have to carry out under the stress of workdays. I’m a big fan of staying real no matter what, but the truth is I never had to introduce myself in the form of a “Hi this is me” video presentation or any kind of self-presentation to be honest. So how can a strategic self-presentation reflect the real self? Doesn’t it sound a little like a paradox? And if so, how do you escape it?
About a month ago I was preparing my presentation for the Selection Day, and while rehearsing I tried to be a little bit of everything; I prepared myself to make a good first impression, to be ultra-nice while interacting with other people, to seem friendly but not like standing too close, to seem funny but not needy, to seem insightful but not like showing off, blah blah blah. However, what I was actually doing was counting on me to screw things up and figuring out ways to prevent that from happening. Fortunately, I realized soon enough that the only way to screw things up is by trying too hard. So I decided to relax and stop sabotaging my own project by overthinking. I realized that there was no answer to escape the paradox because there was no paradox to begin with.
Later on, while I was reading though the assignments, it suddenly hit me: I got so busy trying to figure out what the school was expecting from me, that I didn’t take a minute to think about what I am expecting from the school.
-Uhmm.. What do I want from SCA..?
-It’s not Santa you know.
-I know! There is no Santa!
So after giving it a lot of thought, I finally found out what I am currently expecting from SCA; to keep making my jaw drop, to keep challenging me and to make me looking forward to the unexpected.