My favorite word in the world is "anachronism."
When I first heard it, I loved it just for the way it sounded and the way it felt to say it. It became my favorite when I learned its meaning. For those who don't know, this is the definition:
To put it simply, at many times I've felt like something of an anachronism. Though I can't say for sure what other long-past decades were really like, I've often wondered if things might have been better before some of the of the inventions and ideas of today were even far-off speculations.
I am completely and painfully aware of the fact that every decade and period in history has its positives and negatives. Going backward in time automatically means poorer treatment of women, minorities, and people with disabilities, something my nostalgic mind is troubled by. I crave a simpler, happier past era, but recognize that where our country is now is the closest we've come to complete equality, despite how very far we still have to go.
Regardless of these concerns, I dream of living in the '20s. I fantasize about a culture of flappers, jazz, art, and great literature, a time where people were starting to let joy guide them. The real-life Gatsby's were making money and spending money, drinking, dancing and partying, falling in love and running into heartbreak, all the while living totally in the moment.
Perhaps this is what I want. I often find myself so disenchanted from the present tense mindset of self-obsession, distraction, and prejudice. I look around and see people who don't remember how to have a conversation face to face. I see a generation of young people who get every new fad of the week from a Vine or YouTube video and will never know a life without a phone attached to their bodies. I hear countless reports of senseless violence, hate crimes, injustice, and inventions designed to help us that are only making us less aware.
I guess time just replaces gangsters with terrorists, talking with texting, and flapper dresses with booty shorts. While I may wish some days that I was born in a different decade, I realize I definitely never had a choice. Generation upon generation of ancestors has been led up to me being stuck here in 2016. So, I'll choose to believe there's a reason I'm in the decade I'm in. I'll always be nostalgic, but I'm still a realist, grounded in the knowledge that I can create some difference in the era I live in. Little by little, I'll continue to make my mark for the future anachronisms that dream of decades of the past.
And in the end, I may be endlessly nostalgic and I may be an anachronism, but I do have one hope left. In four years, I'll be living in the new '20s and I truly hope they won't disappoint me. Let's make the flappers proud.