Saturday, December 4, 2010

On 25: The Crisis Party

Well, we all saw this coming.

They call it the "Quarter-Life Crisis." Nice. This milestone assumes that I will live to one hundred years of age, from which I take away one negative and one positive. The former: Living a hundo years will mean at least forty years of bullshit: senility...diapers (which, hey, might actually be fun), a discernible lack of sex appeal (wait no way..maybe for the rest of you assholes), and consistent pleas for the loud noises to be turned down. The positive? I will live my dream of being alive during the 70's.

Here's a cool article about the supposed crisis which I currently inhabit. Here's another one in the New York Times, which was linked so many times on Facebook I thought it was that video of a turtle trying to fuck a shoe.

Fucking turtles.

I don't know about you, but after reading these articles purporting to describe the 20-something's mid-mid-life dilemma, I feel pretty optimistic. It seems like all of the stuff everybody's saying about our generation is pretty damn awesome.

To recap the Captain Wetblanket naysayers: 20-somethings these days feel isolated, lost, aimless, indecisive, and rootless. We don't know what to do because we can do whatever we want, because we're well-off and well-educated and comparatively well-fed. We sleep around because we have no need to get married and start a family and can buy condoms at the gas station. We don't socialize in person because Facebook and Twitter do it for us ( and thank fucking god...I mean, have you actually talked to your friends lately? yawn.) The economy sucks so we have good reason to be funemployed, sitting around perpetuating the stereotype that we have neither the work ethic nor drive to be productive during the day (also, jesus christ there's a lot of entertainment on the internet [see aforementioned turtle-fucking-shoe video]) while getting money from the government for doing just that. We're going to grad school because we've spent the first 22 years of our lives going to school, and hell, it's all we know (and a great reason to continue to party.)

Does anyone else see a complete lack of crisis here?
All of these factors lead me to believe that there has never been a better time to be 25 years old, like, in the history of the world.

To be sure, age 25 in 2010 A.D. is way better than in 2010 B.C. because you'd be dead, on average, seven years ago. To be 25 in 1010 would have been boring as shit: you try sitting around your local medieval fief listening to Beowulf by your lord over and over again (kind of like fifth grade but without indoor plumbing or eye-glasses.) Check out this dude's 25th birthday party:

25 in 1910 probably saw you trying to get shot in the chest and surviving in an attempt to be as badass as Teddy Roosevelt. 25 in 1950 meant you still couldn't get to third base with a girl because Casey Casum kept ruining the mood.

25 in 1980 would have been pretty sweet.

But 25 in 2010? Fucking Awesome. Being that my birthday coincided almost to the day with Thanksgiving, here are some things I am truly thankful for in this day and (my) age:

1. Air conditioning.
2. The internet.
3. The ubiquity of pornography. Dammit, that'd be under internet.
4. Social media. Internet.
5. A job. I am contractually obligated not to mention the name of the prominent technology company that employs me, but suffice to say that is the best company in the world, makes people happy, and provides fun and interesting work days. This is something very few people get to enjoy. Sure, I don't make much money. But investment bankers are the kings of all douchebaggery.
6. The internet.
7. Improv. Consider for a moment that this didn't really exist until Del Close in the 80's, and now it's everywhere and people are awesome at it and it's my favorite thing to do in the world, even if it sucks sometimes.
8. Corrective lenses. Oft have I considered the fact that in 450 B.C., as a Roman soldier, I would be completely blind and useless to society, and assuredly would have been designated one of the soldiers put at the front line to throw shit aimlessly at the enemy only to be immediately killed, probably by swinging an axe into my own face.
9. College. My parents paid for it, a luxury I really, really don't take for granted. I have maintained since I graduated that I had the most possible fun in the world at college: I drank enough beer to fill Lake Nicomas, lost my virginity, did some great improv, made fun of mouth-breathing nerds, got a kickass education without really applying myself, and got a useless liberal arts degree. What better way to spend the four years of 18-22?
10. The internet.
11. Cell phones. Jesus christ. Consider what your parents did before that. "Hey, text me on my landline"? "Go to a payphone and call me when you're outside?" Can you imagine answering the phone WITHOUT KNOWING WHO'S CALLING? My brain just exploded.
12. My friends. I guess they're ok.

Quarterlife crisis? CRISIS!?! I'm in the middle of the Quarter Life Party, doing it like it's 2010 bitches! To those who say this is the beginning of the end, I say go shit in the ocean! I love being right here right now. Sure, sometimes it sucks. But mostly it doesn't.

Thanks be to you, 2010. And thanks be to me, age 25. And a very special thanks to the internet.

Thanks for reading today.


1. ...those who don't respond relatively promptly to texts! Seriously? I just sent you a text message. Unless your phone is rotary/ not in service, it's likely that a message popped up on your phone conveniently letting you know you have received a little note from me. Now, I'm not asking all of you out there to sit patiently by the phone, fingers at the ready, waiting for my text to arrive so you can respond faster than your data network can keep up (I'm telling you to do that.) However, as I often like to illustrate, let's pretend that text messages were actual conversations.
"Hey, what time should I be there?" (current time 1:30pm).
(No response. Seven hours later.)
--"Maybe around 9." (it's 8:45.)
But hey, this is probably happening because no one likes me. So hey, fuck you!

2. ...winter bikers! Now, don't get me wrong, I respect what you are doing. And believe me, we all get it. You're such a badass. "Oh, hey, look at me! It's cold as balls and the ground is a a snowice gauntlet and I'm riding on roads with drivers who are already more pissed off at other drivers than any other time of the year. Oh, hey, look at me. It's not cold at all, and yes, I am that committed to green transportation and reducing traffic and getting exercise, and oh hey, whatever, I love riding my bike.

But this does not give you license to blow off what we call the rules of the road. I usually give some lee-way to bikers not following the rules. Hell, I do just that all the time: ignoring red lights, crossing double-lines, not yielding to pedestrians. But Jesus Christ I do that shit during the summer! With the birds chirping and the temperature 70 degrees and my nuts thawed! With two feet of snow pushing what would still be tight two-way side-streets into impassable small automotive intestines, riding your bike against traffic in a one lane gives me the right to stick a cricket bat outside the driver-side window and close-line you in the nipple.

Hey, guess what? Don't ride your bike in the winter. Hey, fuck you!