Who do you want to be in the world?
This is fundamentally the question that university asks you: Who do you want to be? How knowledgeable and influential to the field of study do you want to be? How respected do you want to be in it? Choosing your degree is not just a passive activity; it is you taking a wild guess as to where you think your greatest contribution to the word will be in.
That simple question is a highly loaded one which should give any student pause; Based on what you know and feel yourself to be, does the degree you‘ve chosen to study honour what you know and feel to be your most sacred calling? Choosing your degree is actually a powerful creative process in which you’re beginning to shape who you hope you’ll be to the world.
Some students, like myself, had the privilege of not being too far away from home while they participate in this joy of self-creation. Being grounded by the familiar while soaring to strange new places, means that you can always be connected to the people who most closely reflect your values during this scary and turbulent process.
But many brave students will not be with their families and may have to form support systems that will at the very least respect them as they go on this very crucial journey in their lives. Who are your friends going to be? And really, should you be living with them?
Badanile and Sizo believe that gender is the crucial determining factor in picking a traveling buddy for this process, and picking friends who most closely mirror their values and lifestyles; Thembisa and Sharon initially reflect Badanile’s simplicity and Thabiso is basically…well…”Sizo times two”. And as scary as the reflections of the selves in funhouse mirrors can be, tonight Badanile and Sizo get a glimpse into their dark side; that unacknowledged version of the self that most cannot accept as even a possibility. Is this who they want to be in the world? If not, can they resist these versions of themselves? And if so, for how long?
But tonight’s episode is also a very special episode for Jabu as well, as he also makes new friends. Tonight, we see how complete strangers connect to and engage with his struggle(s) through the anonymity of his alter ego,. That Other Guy is a funhouse mirror reflection of who Jabu is and tonight we see how he engages with many different young people. Mutual Friends is about finding yourself by connecting with others, and I hope that tonight is a fun illustration and introduction to this theme.