Seriously: student balances existential crisis and love for material things

Tatiana Parafiniuk-Talesnick

Senior English major Taylor LaHera found just the right balance of unhealthy thoughts to keep going.

“I try to think about how meaningless our fragile human existences are just as much as I think about how obsessed I am with butterscotch lattes and my new Lana Del Rey vinyls,” LaHera said.


LaHera said her new tactic has been very helpful. She started reading Camus and Sartre her freshmen year, leading her to a phase of drinking only black coffee and darkly whispering “there is no God” to anyone she meets.

However, LaHera has also sustained an intense love for Chipotle, an Usher infatuation and a pristine collection of Guess pumps.

Unable to maintain both an identity and existential crisis, she found the best way for her to survive was to incorporate her basic lifestyle into her deeper understanding that nothing is real.

“I mean, she seems happy,” said her roommate, junior biomedical sciences student Ryann Lorenzo. “A little bit unhinged, but otherwise fairly happy.”

LaHera’s new sense of balance has seemed to work for her, but family and friends are a little unsettled. Many are not totally convinced that this is a healthy outlook.

“Talking to Taylor is super exhausting honestly,” said LaHera’s older brother, Richard. “I love her, but it’s really hard to keep up with the whole ‘nothing matters and have you tried that acai smoothie’ thing.”

Despite all the people who doubt her, LaHera believes an unashamed love for all that is shallow will keep her from drowning in the deep, dark pool of nothingness that is the reality of life.

Collegian Satire Blogger Tatiana Parafiniuk-Talesnick can be reached online at or on Twitter @TatianaSophiaPT.