The Interestings reminds us that we kind of never were


Over the course of my moderately awkward youth, I attended a lot of summer camps. Day camps and sleep-away camps, camps for sailing or crafting or “adventures” or spirituality, or some progressive combination thereof. Camps for girls, where the evening’s recreations included confessions about our limited experience with kissing; or camps for both genders, which are themselves little more than overly scheduled pretexts to kissing.

While I didn’t make lifelong friends at summer camp, I appreciate having been able to spend a few weeks away from home. Camp was a precursor to the first few weeks of college, after the parents leave and your universe is suddenly a bunch of strangers and the byproducts of a dozen Bed Bath & Beyond trips. A camper, like a freshman, is forced to contend with their individuality, and given the chance to decide which heretofore defining personal traits are worth hanging onto, and which might be cast off like snakeskin at the first opportunity. Camp lets you reinvent yourself in an afternoon, or become better acquainted with who you were in the first place.

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