By JAKE CONNIFER 10/5/2015
Asheville – For Nancy and Gary Waiters August has always been a particularly busy time of year. But this August the Waiters family had a new challenge to bear, their oldest child, Amber, starting her freshman year of college. “You just hope that come December when you see them again that they’re happy and healthy, and of course learning something”, said Nancy, weeping into the empty trunk of her Grand Caravan.
Luckily for Nancy and Gary the first few days of classes have provided an optimistic start to this new journey. In fact, Amber Waiters is already well on her way in her collegiate career. Seated in the one salsa-stain free portion of her futon Amber posited; “You know other kids my age are busy picking out their major and I’m just more interested in fine tuning my thesis and you know exploring Postmodernism.”
And people are already taking note of Amber’s meteoric rise. Intro to film professor, Dr. Michael Gregory, commented while sipping a glass of coke that smelled suspiciously like Crown Royal; “To be honest I wasn’t really ready for this. For the first few months we were supposed to just watch movies and have class discussions. But Amber has already emailed me… with rough drafts. And we don’t even have a paper in this class.”
Though, as is the case with such prodigious talent, Amber’s elders are struggling to cope with her evolving intellect. “I really thought it would be at least until Thanksgiving that I started resenting her education for making her so opinionated and combative. But apparently I just can’t ‘understand [her] postmodern life through [my] fascist viewpoint’ or some psycho-babel like that”, stated Amber’s father, Gary.
As a sign of her brilliance, even Amber’s siblings are struggling to come to terms with her new found intellect. “You know I was just kinda excited to have my own bathroom, but I had my worries. No one wants to be the kid who’s sister went crazy posting pictures of her drinking and partying all over Snapchat and Twitter and Instagram. But even worse she’s been posting these political rants to Facebook. I mean I’m pretty sure my aunt’s not even inviting us to Christmas anymore”, said Amber’s younger brother, Dylan.
Such genius is even creating a rift between Amber and those closest in her personal life. “Look dude, I just really want to eat my Easy-Mac in peace. Which is the same thing I’ve told her every night this week. But when I’m not being lectured by her about how my economics major is just some ‘modernist circle-jerk’, I think she called it, she’s trying to make us watch obscure Tarantino movies and evangelizing me to his greatness. We can’t even make it through Project Runway without her going on and on about how most people wouldn’t understand the artistic impression that the designer is trying to make,” explained Amber’s roommate, Cynthia.
But sitting in the cafeteria with Amber one can see that, much like Tarantino, maybe Amber’s issue is that she’s just misunderstood. “I wish people appreciated things around them more, like where they come from and their diverse backgrounds. I mean just look at this Thai pizza. Most people just look at this and see food. But not me, I see how someone had the idea to take these two types of foods, two cultures even, and break the rules and mix them together, making something new and yet something ancient. Plus you know it’s gluten free crust so it’s better for us and the environment. And you’d never see all of this unless you stopped and looked,” Amber mused, as she picked off the peanuts and vegetables from her pizza.
As she exited the dining hall Amber left me with one last question to consider; “Is postmodern one or two words?”