By Tarun Chandy
I’m having a bit of a problem putting this SCAB together. It isn’t that I don’t have the time to write it. It’s just that I feel like there’s so much to say and so much I don’t want to say that I don’t have any idea where to begin or where I might end. I don’t want this to turn into some pathetic attempt to garner sympathy, as I claim to be cracking under all of the pressure that is SCA. I don’t want to talk about how stressful a time it is and how scared I might feel because I refuse to be a snowflake. But I also can’t claim to have things under control or that I feel vaguely prepared to be pushed out of this school and given a job.
Yeah, some days it feels like I might actually know what I’m doing. Like I know the good work from the pointless or the right agencies from the wrong ones. Like I might have an odd idea that feels right and suddenly fills me with a sense of purpose and a recognition that I am where I belong. And other days it feels like all I’m producing is an endless cycle of crap, in an often unsuccessful attempt to be funny, while selling nothing and targeting no one. The good days and the bad days have started to blend together, to a point where I have no understanding of my current position or future trajectory. But there’s no time to slow down and figure it out, is there?
The question I’m asking myself after our pep-rally of a town hall is whether I really want to win. I’ve never cared about winning for the sake of being better than everyone else or because it felt good to be the best and feel acknowledged for all my hard work. The mere pleasure of victory means nothing to me. But here’s what I do want. I want to be working at an agency I respect, under an ECD I admire. I want to be one of the students that gets talked about at SCA for years to come. I want to make work that’s worthy of T-shirts, tattoos and posters. I want to be remembered. I hope that identifying the victories that mean something to me will bring about a more constructive form of aspiration than blind competition.
Now, I suppose all that remains is putting in the effort and the hours and just going out and taking it. For the longest time, this felt so achievable to me. Like as long as I trusted the course and did my best, things would all turn out okay. Now, I’m not always sure it will. All the doubt and the confidence, the stress and the peace, the knowledge and the idiocy, the trust and the uncertainty has blended together into pure and utter chaos. But perhaps that’s for the best. Maybe what I needed more than anything was to feel like I lost control. To fear the stick and to yearn for the carrot, but to have only a flimsy idea of how to get from one to another. I do not have this semester under control. I am not making any assumptions as to whether or not I will land on my feet at the end of this. But maybe I’ll try a little harder if it all feels less inevitable.
Here’s to trying harder and believing a lot less in myself.