Friday, December 11, 2009

Advice From the Adult World

I sort of wish someone had given me a pamphlet or perhaps a short newsletter about Things Young People Should Know (and not about STDs and/or domestic abuse) back when I still had time, energy and enough mental presence to DO something about it. So kids, this one is for you.

Important Life Lessons From the Adult World

*You are NOT special. I know, I know, you really thought you were. Everyone from your mom to your fifth period English teacher has convinced you utterly and irrevocably that you ARE special. But you're not. No one cares about your blog (or mine really), your English/History/Library/Drama degree, and when you take a job it will NOT be as president or HMFIC (look it up kidlets, look it up). You'll be hired in for a crappy salary and you'll have to prove that you're worth more. It's NOT fair. And you're not still not special.

*Bad credit sucks. It doesn't matter if it's your pot smoking boyfriend who ruined your checking account. It doesn't matter if you really really thought you could pay off your Target card and instead kept it going at 20% interest. My advice? Tear up those offers until you can buy basic things. Like food. And shelter. (And maybe car insurance.)

*Just because you saw something on a reality show does NOT automatically make it cool or acceptable. If you are pretty sure whatever you are currently doing is a liability, stop, cease, desist. The end.

*Having children is a wonderful, awe-inspiring event. Do NOT do so until you have your shit firmly together. It really DOES change everything; if you're not ready to focus on someone other than yourself, please find a nice reliable birth control method and use it! Pregnancy is NOT something you should do because your friend did and looked cute at her shower. Copying shoe styles is permissible; family planning? Not so much.

*Your skin and hair may not look the same as they did when you were younger, and you might not ever get it back. This is especially true after giving birth (see above) and is one reason I expect my son to pay for my life of luxury after he becomes an award-winning football star/Nobel laureate/cancer-curing doctor. He's the one who gave me weird curly dark hair. And bad skin. I had awesome skin as a teenager and now? Now??? Pass the Pro-active.

*If you use substances occasionally as a teen, you might be experimenting. If you party in college, you might be blowing off steam. If you continue to party well after you should have finished partying and/or end up living in your mom's basement into your 30s, you. have. a. drug. problem. Rehab IS for quitters. And that's cool.

*You might be able to roll out of bed at 10 am, hit McDonald's on the way to the mall and then stay up until 2 am. Enjoy this. It will not last. If it does, see above. Furthermore, those egg mcmuffins will actually REPAY you in the form of ANOTHER type of muffin, i.e., the muffintop you're now sporting. You have to work out REALLY hard as you get older. It's not fair. I know. And you're still not special.

*You might reach a point in life when things are going well and you want to buy a toy. A motorcycle. A Bitchy German Luxury Car. Make sure you can make your bills. Bills suck. Credit bills suck MORE. And medical bills? Those should be illegal. I'm not trying to reform health care here, but who the hell wants to pay over a grand to be stuck in a giant magnetized tube just to get a shot in his or her butt for sciatica? I'm just sayin'.

*You will end up having more medical bills and less 'fun' bills. This means that when you're young, you pay for stuff you WANT to do. Shopping! Tanning! (More on this later.) Eating at restaurants! When you're older, you'll write checks and think, when the eff did this happen??? I'm paying for a mole they removed AND a biopsy because they thought I had skin cancer. NOT fun bills. NOT fun.

*Tanning. Don't do it. I don't care HOW freaking cute you look in a bikini. I don't care that you're going to San Tropez with five of your bfffffs. I don't. I don't care how amazing you look with a tan or how it sets off your eyes or how adorable you look with your girl/boyfriend. I don't. All the cool kids who tanned since they were 14? Yeah, they have wicked crow's feet now. Be afraid, be very afraid. And remember two words: mole biopsy. Nothing hot about THAT! SPF and spray tan. That's what you need to do.

*Smoking. If you smoke, stop. You know the reasons, but trust me, it doesn't end well. That habit as a young person gets harder to kick as an older person. And it gives you mouth wrinkles. Ew.

*Enjoy it. You think you'll be young forever. Technically I'm pretty sure I am still young. I'm 31. I got carded last week and the bouncer said I could be 13 for all he knew with my 'baby face'. Nice right? And next year I'm 32, and on it goes. Every time my kids scream or fall off something or cry, I get a leeeeetle older. I got bangs cut last night because it's wayyyyy cheaper than Botox. (Remember the lesson on tanning? Try not to frown either.) I remember college like I was just there, and it's already ten years ago. If you start feeling invincible or like time doesn't apply to you, remember this from the Floyd song: " day you'll find, ten years have got behind you, no one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun..." It happens to ALL of us. So enjoy your short skirts, crazy hair and weird relationships. Enjoy your freedom to do stupid things. Try to do smart ones instead. Regret is very expensive and lasts a long, long time.

You're welcome, kids. Anytime Sammo can help.

Comments, questions, old-ster advice?


Aunt Becky said...

I am very special. Dave says so all the time while he is rolling his eyes at me. I don't know what you are talking about.

Sammo said...

Of course YOU are special. As am I. It's just the rest of THEM who aren't. ;)