Thursday, November 19, 2009


name is Dustin. I am from Montana. This seems to surprise people. I guess I never knew how removed my state was from the rest of the country. My friend Max gave me great advice when I first moved here. He said that I should just embrace it. It's an anomaly that people appreciate and ask questions about. So far I think I have embraced it and let people ask questions, use it as an excuse, and prove them wrong. Growing up, I have heard stereotypes about people from California. So I know what it's like. I still haven't met another person from Montana. Most people don't even know where Montana is. I have been asked if that was in Canada. Also, I have been asked why I didn't have a Southern accent.

Although, I have been wondering if I have an accent. I can tell that other people have an accent, for the most part. This is because more than several people have asked where I was from and when I reply, "Montana," they were surprised that I was from the U.S. Well, I have gotten that before. But that wasn't because of my accent. They were surprised because I wasn't fat, students and other teachers alike.

I am not too worried about this. The past three years I have gotten very comfortable with myself. My faults, my achievements, past, present. So when these situations arise I am not so self-conscious. I'm glad that this makes me stand out. It makes me friendlier, charming, and sometimes a little strange. Strange, sure you can call me that, ignorant, however, is another story. We read the same things you do, watch the same shows, experience diversity, and we also know how to get our hands dirty.

Oh, and not everyone knows how to ride a horse, shoot a gun, skin a deer, ice skate, herd cattle, drive in the snow, fly fish, ski, or line dance.

I'm not mad or anything I just want you all to know that, despite that fact I smile and laugh, I am proud of where I came from. I do miss it. I am starting to understand why I grew up there. It was so that I could amaze people upon conversation. That I could stand out. That I wouldn't forget where I came from and can take that with me wherever I go. I can also change peoples stereotypes along the way. I am sure up there in Big Sky country there is the guy they think all Montanans are. I know I'm not him. Whether they're Japanese, Californian, French, Spanish or Martians, people's ideas will altered. And that sounds like a challenge to me, I am starting to like those. Not the usual kind, but those that I would have not gotten to if I hadn't faced previous challenges. Hitch your wagons. (We all know how to do that!)

1 comment:

  1. When I went to Coast Guard bootcamp, across the bay from you-Alameda-people would ask me about the savage natives. I replied that one had to be careful when and where they went in some parts of the state. The Indian warriors would swoop down, on horseback, and attack, rob, maim, or kill the naive traveller. One had to hope they had a good tune-up on their car to outrun the furious mob. Then the Indians discovered cars and things got really dicey. It wasn't until citizen vigilantes came in and cleaned out the renegades that people could move freely without fear.All in jest of course, but some actually believed me.