Inadequacy. Whether about looks or personality the feeling is common to many.
For some women it takes a step beyond that. “Being thin” becomes the answer to all problems: “why am I not popular/funny/smart?” comes down to “I’m not thin enough.”
We’re bombarded with lies every day, telling us we’re not thin enough or that we should get rid of our nonexistent wrinkles or at least prevent those coming with age – ugh, AGE! – which teaches us to look discriminately at ourselves.
After high school was over I, as many other Danes, took a sabbatical. Instead of working or traveling I focused on writing. I spent a LOT of time with myself and a handful of close friends.
My solitude forced me to deal with these issues. Continue reading
Lights are low, there’s a buzz in your blood and what the next person says to you is hilarious. You laugh and forget what it’s all actually about and suddenly feel like dancing.
Then you see a stranger enter the dance floor, his back straight as if to declare ‘here I am’ to everyone.
“That guy helped Dennis out,” a friend tells you, “with that exam he had to redo. Apparently they went out to celebrate after the test. He’s been with over 50 girls! Man, he’s my hero!”
You feel a prickling interest. 50 girls? How? What’s so special about this guy that he could get 50 girls to scooch out of their undies for him? Continue reading
Though I turned 20 in 2014 it was a year that brought on a lot of new things for me. It was the first time I solo traveled.
I learned to trust my own judgment more and to think critically about the consequences of who I meet and hang out with – and whose couches to sleep on.
I learned that getting lost can be scary, but good. I learned that sprinting is quite easy when there’s a bus about to leave.
I learned that people can walk in and out of your life and leave an impact without necessarily having to stay there. Continue reading
You know how they say the sign of a good chemist is an exploded lab? No? Makes sense, since they don’t say that. Honestly, the only way that would indicate a good chemist is if curiosity implied “good”, and as DeeDee has taught us, as a single factor it doesn’t help much.
A good chemist is sort of like a good chef – they keep their lab clean, know what’s boiling and got their theoretical shit together.
That last part and me? Not so much. Continue reading
How do you fix a fatal mistake? A decision it took months of active searching and years of passive observation to make?
What if that decision was wrong?
What if changing it would put you in a worse position economically, socially and academically? Would you do it?
(WHY is this a duck?!?!?!)
I’m studying to become a chemical engineer. It was a long process to end up here. I first wanted to study medicine, then realized ‘I’m not interested in asking Mrs. Smith how her gout is going’. I heard of medicinal chemistry and thought “that’s for me”, but it was too specific an area to be worldwide known and respected, so I decided “Chemistry, and then I’ll pick the classes leading to medicinal chemistry”. Continue reading
Am I of glass?
Corrupted glass with cracks caught in its structure?
Or am I a diamond? A strong network, one unit.
Perhaps graphite, stacked in layers that touch but never merge.
An ion bond, which is happily dissolved given the smallest hope of escape.
An atom bursting with emptiness.
An electron without a partner.
A negative, free energy.
By using book covers as a standardized analogy for why we’re all oh-so-individual and why we’re all oh-so-different on the inside we forget something important:
Books are not people.
Yes, while a book cover can lead you on or while you may have skipped a book due to its boring wrapping, one truth still stands: when someone designs a book cover they think about who’ll be interested in it. Not so much with people. Continue reading
The stellar amount of books left me breath-taken, but even more impressive was the many people come to see them.
The Bella Center in Copenhagen was filled to bursting with publishers and the books they were pushing and I walked through all of it to get to my own publisher: Egolibris.
I was there because my Danish book, “Tidsfangen” – “The Time Prisoner”, had now been published.
On the way to our booth I realized how heavy the competition was and the Bella Center transformed into a battle field.
Egolibris’ booth was small and situated in front of the Book Cafés large stage. I was about to ask her if that was where I’d be reading aloud when she sighed and said:
“Unfortunately we’ve got this big stage in front of us, so an earlier author had to basically shout in order to be heard.”
I smirked. “Don’t worry. I’ll steal them away,” I promised, confident in the boom of my voice, which was always remarked upon as being hard to ignore. Continue reading
‘Twas the beginning of a new semester and a new era for thirty-six young people all setting out on the journey to become chemical engineers.
“A chemical engineer must have a social knack,” they were told. “A chemical engineer must make raise the team-work flag.”
Little did they know they were to be placed in groups, groups set in chain-like rules, groups they were to settle with for months to come.
‘Twas the beginning of new friendships.
Drinks went like a merry-go-round.
Who shouts loudest, who asserts themselves, who puts on the mask of the clown? Continue reading
I feel as if standing in front of an abnormal abyss. Where did the past years go? Is it not mere months since I threw caramels in the heads of the children in classes beneath me as it marked my leaving behind the public school and entering the Gymnasium? (Indeed, Danish rites of passage are strange.)
Is it not just a few months ago since I began my journey as a math/physics major in the Danish high school and fought with everything I had to get grades above minimum?
Was it not yesterday that I got my students cap and rode around town with my classmates drinking to the point of passing out? Continue reading