Periscope Depth

where we wake up electrified out of the coma

Boston gets visibly stupider after Labor Day. I mean this literally. You can actually see the ignorance as the college kids file back into the city, skidding to a halt in front of turnstiles on the T, giggling and checking directions (“do we want Alewife or Braintree?”). They travel in loud, drunken knots – not something adults are immune to, but for college kids that’s the sole means of transit. They’re raucous without being poetic, enthusiastic without being purposeful, raunchy without being sensual. They are the worst minds of their generation and I keep waiting for them to be destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked.

Nothing paints this in brighter colors than the September 1st moving clusterfuck, where every college kid moves in and every summer subletter moves out on the exact same day. None of them own cars, and the ones who do are all moving to neighborhoods without parking. They move their shitty couches and particleboard desks from Allston to Mission Hill and back, wanting nothing more than a working fridge and a bathroom with nothing crawling visibly. They grind their apartments into dust while their landlord patiently ignores their calls.

(Seven years ago, a friend was trying to sell some property he owned in the Kenmore area. I mentioned, naif that I was, that he could always rent it to BU students. He was polite enough merely to laugh in my face. “Because that’s how you get rich in this town,” he said. “Renting apartments to college kids.”)

I speak with familiarity because that’s where I come from. I lived in shitty apartments, nailing things into the walls, stringing cables through fixtures that couldn’t accommodate them and letting things grow sticky in a fridge I didn’t own. Being able to comment with such disdain on something I lived through makes me a hypocrite poltroon jackass typical blogger conscious of irony. It’s a phase humans go through, like shitting their pants or liking RENT. You get through it as quickly as possible, and if you think the grownups are rolling their eyes at you because they don’t get it, ma-a-an, well, time will privilege their view.

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