Alumnus. The word just keeps ringing in my head. And here I stand, alumnated. I am forced to recognize that no more is there a surety of my next meal needing no payment, of it being balanced with all the right nutrients. No more, am I assured of a single-room with no-one to tell me when to get up and when to sleep except when I choose. I find it hard to be poetic, and feel a need to talk about the heightened foreboding I feel building up, thrust from this adult womb into the cacophony of a ‘normalized life’. A life replete with all the vices I have come to recognize at MICA in people, in institutions, in society and myself; only now, they will come disguised, for once again privacy will reign supreme. Once again, rumours will be only that. No longer will they have the magical power of truth that they so quickly acquire at MICA. Once again, who is behind a door, and what goes on behind it, will be a mystery. No longer will conjecture be enough, no longer will freedom be our only rein.
MICA is a working system of anarchy. Anarchy, only in the sense that there no government, simply a titular ‘admin’. There is of course a price to pay for every action, and also a semblance of direct democracy; but it is not even that. One nay can change everything. There is no physical police and yet there is no crime on campus, except those that are intangible. Here women have the choice of true equality and we regularly elect women ‘Presidents’. Here, sex is too commonplace to have much mystery. Instead, it is the chief test we MICAns use to test ‘true love’. The freedoms here reveal human power relations more nakedly than otherwise possible.
There is green & red everywhere. Everywhere. And the insides of the rooms are whitewashed. The white of asylums, of hospitals and all things sanitized. There is apathy and boredom, there are endless vacuous discussions and impenetrable clouds of cigarette smoke.
And yet, there is beauty here, and life. Everything is alive, including the door hinges and the tubelights, and most things are beautiful. There is beauty in the swirls of smoke, and beauty in the vacousness of it all. All the human emotions are magnified in this sometimes claustrophobic, sometimes liberating space. Some of us metamorphosize into Kafkaesque nightmares and some of us break free. Some of us stagnate, while others seethe. Some of us converse and others debate. Others love and make love & the rest of us decide how to cope with life here-onwards.
And then comes the legal contract, and everything changes into the past tense.
And yet, there was beauty here, and life. Everything was alive, including the door hinges and the tubelights, and most things were beautiful. There was beauty in the swirls of smoke, and beauty in the vacousness of it all. All the human emotions were magnified in this sometimes claustrophobic, sometimes liberating space. Some of us metamorphosized into Kafkaesque nightmares and some of us broke free. Some of us stagnated, while others seethed. Some of us conversed and others debated. Others loved and made love & the rest of us decided how to cope with life here-onwards.
“And so it is,
Just like you said it would be…”