Welcome to The Ruling Zeitgeist

In just over a month I will be departing the United States to spend a year in Germany as a participant in the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (which, due to its intolerably long name, will henceforth forever be referred to simply as "CBYX" on this blog). As the name suggests, the program is funded by both the US and German governments and is intended primarily as a cultural exchange for young adults. Part of my time will be spent in Köln (English: Cologne) taking intensive language classes with the hopes of improving my German. The last part of my trip--in fact the vast majority of it--will be spent somewhere in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern taking classes at a local university and eventually finding gainful employment.

I would be remiss if I did not mention my friend, classmate, fellow traveler, and co-participant Travis Thompson for giving me the idea to start a blog about the CBYX experience. And for letting me steal his map. You can read his blog here.

Like many things, I debated myself for quite some time as to whether starting a blog would be the ultimate in presumptuousness, vanity, and hypocrisy. I dislike when folks are ostentatious about their travels, and few people--myself included-- are rarely genuinely interested in hearing about the exploits of others. Nonetheless, after much consternation and soul-searching, I decided to start blogging. My simple conceit is that I am writing this only for myself and any audience it may attract is ancillary...

...which, of course, is just a mental justification to allow me to blog without any ex post dissonance. I hope to attract throngs of loyal readers who will praise me for my genius.

Look for more frequent updates and continued eloquence as I near departure.