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Where Are You From?📍
And is it important to you?
Once upon a time, I went on a date with a guy who, when I asked him where he’s from, told me, bluntly: I never ask people where they’re from. It says nothing about who they are. And, quite frankly, I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.
For the first 20 years of my life—if not more—being from the Bay Area was 99 percent of my personality. Even the pals I’ve met in the last few years know at least one thing about me: I’m from the Bay. But, was this douchebag right? Does it have anything to do with who we are?
I suppose the answer to that depends on who you ask.
For me, where I’m from is a significant part of who I am. I grew up in Alameda, California and had the privilege of living in one house for the first 18 years of my life, up until I went to college. The East Bay has a rich, prideful culture—our hubris is unrivaled, as my non-Bay Area friends have noted—but sometimes I wonder who I’d be if I grew up elsewhere. We’ve got countless meme pages that celebrate the hilariously unique parts of Bay Area culture, including my personal favorite, hyphy_memes. The people and things I saw and experienced growing up undoubtedly gave me the perspective I have now—and for that, I’m forever grateful. But what if I grew up in, say, another part of the world? Would I have the same flavoring, humor and optimism? Who is to say! I guess this becomes a nature versus nurture question, too… But, how could where you’re from have no relation to who you are?
It’s funny, thinking about how where we are also affects where we’re from. Growing up, I was from Alameda, if not the East End of the island. In college, I was from the East Bay or the Bay or even sometimes NorCal. In Amsterdam, I was from America. In New York, I’m from California, or even the ~West Coast~. Everything’s relative, baby!
My best friends are from all over: San Diego, Costa Rica, the Jersey Shore, NYC, Philly, Oregon, even Idaho (😜). And oddly enough, most of us have the same pride about where we’re from.
As us Twenty-Somethings grow older and move away from home—more on that later😉—how does our relationship with home change? And what impact do the cities we live in for the rest of our lives have on us and who we are?
The moral of the story is this: I will always ask people where they’re from. 510 forever!
But for the jerk who shall remain unnamed, I guess growing up in Virginia didn’t have the same influence on him.
Wow, I’m really feeling like Carrie Bradshaw right about now. And with that—here are a few picks to get you through the week:
“Drugstore” by Hope Tala - My No. 1 Spotify artist of 2020: Hope Tala. Truly a glistening light in my life. Her sweet, sensitive vocals strike a chord for me, I don’t know what it is! This bop is off of her most recent EP, Girl Eats Sun, which I recommend enjoying with a good book and a cup of coffee.
“I Don’t Think I Can Do This Again (with Clairo)” by Mura Masa - Hate me, but bedroom pop really gets me in my feels sometimes. It puts me in a summer-sun-dress-walk-to-the-park mood, and who doesn’t want that?
Refinery29: “How I Finally Forgave Myself For Being An Unintentional Mistress” - Wild read. Love is crazy, man! I really feel for the author. Sometimes it’s a trip even trying to put yourself in someone else’s shoes, which is exactly what this piece does.
Marker: “The Shocking Meltdown of Ample Hills — Brooklyn’s Hottest Ice Cream Company” - There’s just something about yuppy startups crashing down that I just can’t get enough of (read: I devour anything Fyre Fest-adjacent). This ice cream is all over NYC and I was shocked to read the story behind their “success.”
Vice: “Introducing: The Worst Guy Ever” - If you aren’t a Twenty-Something, I don’t think this article will make any sense. Sorry, Susan! But truly: This is every. Bushwick. Boy. Ever. Disgustingly accurate. Enjoy!
Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans - Maybe I’m in the minority here, but self-help books truly hit the spot for me. This is a great read for any Twenty-Something trying to carve out a fulfilling path in this life (who isn’t?).
Framing Britney Spears - Everyone’s talking about it—and it’s worth the hype. The New York Times does a stunning deep-dive into her conservatorship, the role of the ~media~ in her downfall, and how Britney’s been essentially in hiding for the last 13 years.
Yoga With Adriene: Yoga Party - This 30-minute yoga vid is perfect to get a little movement into your lunch break. Nothing too strenuous, just some good flow to wake you up.
Save Yourselves! - If you liked Search Party, (You still haven’t watched it?! Why?!), this cast will tickle your funny bone. The plot is kind of dumb, but the young NYC hipsters made up for it for me.
Brooklyn Candle Studio - All of their scents are incredible. My personal favorites: Japanes Citrus, Rose Botanica and Love Potion. Mmmmmmmmm.
SET Active Form Racer Tank - I have this slim, comfy tank in a few colors, and I have yet to find a softer shirt. It’s great for lounging, doing some yoga, and can be done up with the right jeans and shoes. Cute!
Plant Wall Climbing Clips - I have these for two of my pothos cuttings that are now climbing up my wall! They blend right in, are easy to use, and are mad affordable.
My Go-to Smoothie: 1 cup frozen mangoes, 1 cup frozen strawberries, 1 cup of kale or spinach, 1/2-inch of ginger root, a few carrots, some chia seeds, a few other protein powders (optional, obvi), and limeade. I can’t get enough of this sweet-tart treat!
Overnight Oats - We love a protein-packed breakfast! Filling, yummy, easy to make. Try these killer oats, you’ll keep ‘em in the fridge all week long.
you will not spend
so much time treading water
and trying to keep your head above the waves
that you forget, truly forget,
how much you have always loved to swim.”
- Tyler Knott Gregson
Question of the week: What is the last thing that crosses your mind before you fall asleep?
Thank you again for another great week, my dearest Twenty-Somethings! Your support means more to me than you’ll ever know.
For last week’s newsletter, click here. If you want to get to know me a little better, connect with me on Twitter, LinkedIn, Goodreads or online. I’m always looking to improve my work, so leave a comment or send me a message about what you want to read about in the next Dear Twenty-Somethings!
If you liked what you read, send this newsletter to a friend! Heck, send it to 10 friends! Sending love, light and warmth to you, wherever you are. 🌟
Cheers & happy Wednesday! Hope you all have a lovely Valentine’s Day. See ya next week.
xoxoxo, Quinnie <3