Illustration by Ryan Alexander-Tanner

INSTAGRAM IS FUN. I fuck with Instagram. You can follow me on there, I'm just "iankarmel"—a screen name I arrived at after discovering both "ChampagnePapi" and "HairWeaveKiller" were taken. It's a fun way to fuck off and you don't want to think about what your brain wants to think about. I actually think Instagram might push people to live a life worth Instagramming.

I—FOR REAL—left the house the other day because I was embarrassed that every Snapchat I was sending had the same sad "curtains and partial view of a houseplant" background. I left the darn house, fam, and I don't think it matters why. If you walk along the beach at sunset because you wanna throw some filters on Haystack Rock, you still walked along the beach at sunset. I fuck with Instagram.

HAVING SAID THAT [Seinfeld bass riff], I might need to fuck with Instagram less. I'm not about to go on some diatribe about how we need to disconnect from social media and actually go out into the beautiful, awful world, but... yes I am.

I have no science to back up what I'm about to say, OTHER THAN THAT JESUS IS LORD AND KING OF ALL DANCE HALLS, but it seems to me that the void left by not reporting experiences is filled by memory. Your memory can be dumb as hell. Sometimes it will be like, "Oh man, remember when we got that DUI and had to coach a youth hockey team? We may have been a high-powered lawyer, but did we really serve a higher power? Now we do, and that power is youth hocke—oh no, that was The Mighty Ducks. Sorry, keep watching old Seinfelds."

Sometimes your memory is just a loose recollection of blotches and shapes. Sometimes your memory distills your college experience into three smells and the sound of the MAX voice saying, "Goose Hollow." Sometimes, if you're lucky, you'll be aware enough to remind your Twitter-refreshing ass to be present—your memory can be so much more powerful.

You recall the feeling of the lake as you jumped in, just cold enough to jostle your brain from the inebriation it sat comfortably within just moments before. You recall the sky, full of so many stars that it's ALMOST beautiful enough to make you log onto REI's website to buy a tent.

The water... so black and inky that you'll have to excuse the lazy description. Your friends are laughing, and it's so elemental and basically human that it feels like a memory even as it's happening. Muted splashes. Propulsion. Submersion. Distance. Her face gliding toward you, pale blue in the moonlight, so fucking beautiful that she looks like an image some company would use to sell you sleeping pills. Her face glows with the same unconstrained pure beauty that must have glinted in the eyes of the first person who thought to go to Taco Bell completely hammered. HER eyes, smiling, consenting. You spent your whole adolescence wondering, "How do I know she wants me to kiss her?" and then you see it and you do kiss, and it feels like finally getting home after three connecting flights and two delays, and then it feels like something you don't care to explain, and somewhere your brain is screaming, "REMEMBER THIS FEELING," and you just thank god you can't get your cell phone wet.

As your finger mindlessly kick-pushes through your Instagram feed, that feeling will flood your brain. That feeling is fun. I fuck with that feeling. @IanKarmel