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Davis, California

Sunday, March 3, 2024

Column: Amanda Hardwick

Greetings Aggie students, staff and random family members I know will stalk my columns via The Aggie website. I imagine most of you are probably wondering who I am and why the heck I deserve to have my own little place in the paper once a week. Well, my dream answer would go something along the lines of me being awesome, how I beat out 3,000 other applicants (one of which was the nephew of the Dalai Lama) and how I dropped out of Olympic pole dancer training JUST to pursue a career at The California Aggie.

The real answer would probably be that 14 people applied for 13 positions, and one of them had to drop out because they actually were training for the Olympics. Honestly, I don’t know the politics of columnist selection, but here I am anyway, whether you like it or not. I’m hoping you do.

So with the almighty title of “columnist,” I have the handy dandy opportunity to use my first column as a form of introduction. I figured I would swoop on this option because 1) I don’t have a better idea to kick off this job, and 2) when will there ever be so appropriate an opportunity to talk about myself without sounding like a complete jackass?

I realize that second one might sound a bit narcissistic. On the contrary, I actually hate talking about myself. For all you know, I might be feeling pretty uncomfortable already. That said, I sat and pondered the quickest and most painless ways to introduce myself while still covering all the bases. And thus, I finally settled on the Facebook format.

If you think I’m joking, you’re in for a rude awakening. So here we go.

Interests: Wow. That’s broad. Well, I enjoy anything from “people watching” on campus to watching “The Ellen Degeneres Show” with my roommates like it’s our job. I also think chocolate is a main food group, I secretly admire those students that can bike with no hands and sometimes I stare at stucco walls for long periods of time trying to find shapes and patterns. I’m basically a super exciting person.

Favorite music: If I say indie, I’ll just sound pretentious. So I guess I will focus more on the music I grew up on: classic rock. If I had to be someone’s groupie in the ’60s, it would have been Pink Floyd. Roger Waters looked like he showered more than Robert Plant. Plus the fact that Robert Plant’s hair was prettier than mine would probably make me feel awkward.

Favorite TV shows: “Reno 911” is the only show I will proudly admit to watching … but I also have big love for “Big Love.” And if “Murder She Wrote” was on … I’m just saying, I probably wouldn’t turn it off.

Favorite movies: Not The Neverending Story. Also, not Hope Floats. With those excluded, I will gladly call anything else you want to suggest one of my “favorite movies.” Take your best shot.

Favorite books: The Hungry Caterpillar.

Favorite whimsical creature: Still to be determined. And yes, I realize this is not actually a category on Facebook.

About me: Crap. Here I am again. I guess I should have just done a standard introduction to begin with. Well, howdy folks, my name is Amanda and I hail from some obscure town called Lodi, California. You probably don’t know where that is-and I’m not blaming you.

I am a senior community and regional development major, which usually elicits puzzled looks from the people I announce it to. This in turn puzzles me, because it is probably the most general sounding major I have ever heard of. I plan to do something involving DEVELOPING REGIONS AND COMMUNITIES. But let’s be real, I will probably graduate and do something completely unrelated.

My plan this year is to write about things that spark my interest or disdain, hopefully spark your interest or disdain, too, and maybe give people a few laughs without receiving any hate mail or threats to my life. I swear there will be no future columns in Facebook format, if that’s something that concerns you.

I look forward to making feeble, but hopefully successful, attempts to entertain you while you space out in class or sip your grande non-fat latte at the Silo. And next week I promise I will have something more insightful and life-altering for you kids to read. Perhaps I will even have decided what my favorite whimsical creature is. So stay tuned. The possibilities are endless.

AMANDA HARDWICK was not actually an Olympic pole dancer, because it’s not a real event. But if you agree with her that it should be, contact her at aghardwick@ucdavis.edu.


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