I posted my nostalgic list of top 5s from high school a few days ago. I haven't put much thought since high school about my "top" lists, but since I put so much emphasis on lists way back in high school, I'm going to make a point of bringing it back to the future like Marty McFly, especially since I make such a huge point about making lists for everything else in my life.
Whenever I have the chance to make a list about something strategic, I'll start writing it out, whether on a used napkin or in my multi-colored striped planner. I even wrote out a list of possible events for presenting at the National Women's Studies Association Conference on my used napkin at the local market after scarfing down a delicious falafel burger with yogurt sauce and fries.
This November, my friend Nicole Murphy and I are presenting an ethnography on teaching women's and gender studies topics to Upward Bound high school students. For those who don't know, Upward Bound is a federally funded program that supports low income and first generation students.
This summer, I was a tutor counselor for Upward Bound at Beloit College, which means I was in charge of them while they were on campus in the dorms or in classes. It also means the girls decorated my nails with coffee mugs and confectionary colored dots while I rapped Nicki Minaj for them, and then I swung from skyscrapers in Batman: Arkham City and watched campy b-horror movies with the boys. If it wouldn't have been for the used napkin list, I would've easily forgotten one of my primary goals for the summer and sat in the dark side of my room, watching American Dad! and reading The Walking Dead.
Lists supply that much needed practicality and controlled structure on a day to day basis. Plus, without a list in front of me, I would be wandering around town, going in and out of independent businesses, and spending all of my money, which can be enjoyable at times, but isn't exactly a way of life.
I know for sure my mind will wander, and I will forgetfully go about my day, getting lost from one moment to the next; lists keep me on track, and give me productivity where I need it. Although sometimes I do prefer to be lost when I have the chance, that's not always an option for the real world or when you gotta pay the bills. For that, I have lists to feel like I'm on track.
So here are my updated lists for my current top 5s, just to show that I can still produce them about my interests:
5) Larceny and Old Lace by The Coathangers
4) Gay Singles by Hunx and His Punx
3) Feminist Sweepstakes by Le Tigre
2) All Hands on the Bad One by Sleater-Kinney
1) Who Killed Amanda Palmer by Amanda Palmer
5) Lost in Translation
4) Away We Go
3) Fantastic Mr. Fox
2) Where the Wild Things Are
5) Manhood for Amateurs by Michael Chabon
4) Boy: Tales of Childhood by Roald Dahl
3) Coraline by Neil Gaiman
2) The Queer Art of Failure by Judith/ Jack Halberstam
1) Fun Home by Alison Bechdel