Tuesday, July 23, 2013


I carry three IDs in my wallet. Last week, as I sifted through receipts, credit cards, and cash in search of my work ID, I realized that this is the first time Ive had to juggle three IDs (one is plenty for the girl who loses/forgets everything—just ask my roommates). At home Im set with my drivers license, which mostly sits forgotten in my wallet, and at school I just need to keep track of my Boston University ID.

Here, its a different story. I have an ID to access my work building, my drivers license to get into bars, and an NYU ID to enter the dorms.

Each comes with a unique identity.

When I press my work ID to the censor, I see the picture of a girl on her first day of work with a cheesy nervous grin stretched across her face. Every time I see the picture, I’m reminded that I’m only going to be using this ID for a brief moment, and that I should continue smiling.

Once I’m in, Im an eager intern, a novice wine taster, and a curious eater. I linger near the test kitchen, snatching up scraps when I can. Right now were testing Thanksgiving recipes, and Ive discovered that turkey and mashed potatoes go surprisingly well with the chill of an over-air conditioned office.

And then I get to work, painstakingly transcribing interviews with French chefs whose accents are thick as meringue.

Sometimes Im invited to tiptoe through the wine room (a great challenge for a klutz), joining editors as they swirl, swish, and spit Zinfandels. One tastes like gummies, another like hot dogs.

After work, my driver’s license opens up the world of happy hours. With a beer in hand, Im no longer an intern. Im an adult. Recounting work stories with friends, discussing our morning commutes, gushing about how we live in the best city in the world. Being 21 still feels new and illegal.

With a quick tap of my NYU ID, I revert to the kid I really am. Up in 1407, we discard our adult selves. We shuffle around our tiny kitchen, push our furniture to the corners of our common room to exercise together, and dissect every moment of each other’s days. The questions range from what were doing at work, to how to word an email to an editor, to what plans we have for the future. Its the time of the day to unwind, and to slowly combine my three identities into the single ID that Ill need come August 2. 

I'm still working on it.

Written by Caroline Hatano, Boston University, Food & Wine
By Kelli Fitzpatrick, Kent State University, Reader's Digest

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