Monday, April 7, 2014

Why Being Twentysomething Sucks

Honestly the name of this article should read, "Why Being Stuck Between Adolescence and Adulthood Sucks for Anyone Who Has Failed to Carve Out Their Place In the World," but that is mighty wordy and certainly not as Google friendly. I have been a 26 for awhile now, almost as long as one can be a certain age before progressing on to the next number, but I have been stuck in the purgatory between adolescence and adulthood for years. In this tenure of uncertainty, I have come to realize a few stark realities about this phase, first off

No One Has Any Time

There used to be a time when I would spend my days killing time, not till some certain event, just simply killing time till it was once again time to go to sleep or kill more time. It was a never ending cycle of killing time and time killing. My friends and I developed quite a knack for it too, we had entire unspoken schedules of activities that would kill time, mostly wandering aimlessly around the mall and hoping to run into an acquaintance who would help us kill 15-20 minutes before heading over to Ponderosa to spend three hours eating at the buffet, ultimately turning our waitress into a mortal enemy.

Pictured: My Teen Years
This was before the Internet, not before it existed, but before it served any purpose to our demographic, this was back when MySpace was being created and Mark Zuckerburg was undoubtedly being picked on in White Plains, New York. The only outlet we had was to go home and play N64 or numberless PlayStation, but that carried the risk of being forced by your father to rake leaves, so the mall became our stomping ground and Ponderosa our eatitariurm.

That was years ago, back in a simpler time. In order to hang out with friends now you must coordinate schedules, usually weeks out in order to find a couple hours where neither person is working or otherwise preoccupied. As a twentysomething, which I will henceforth use as a place holder for the state of limbo between adolescence and adulthood, you're work schedule is chaotic, you will work any hours they give you as a means of hoping to impress your employer into giving you a promotion, and all your friends are in the same boat, working strange hours which always seem to be the opposite of yours, making it all but impossible for you to find anytime to wander the halls of the mall because...

There is Nothing To Do

As a teenager you think, "I can't wait to get older, there is so much more stuff you can do," but then you get older and none of that stuff seems to exist, or maybe it's just that you can't afford it. You finally find some time to hang out with some friends and you realize that your options are shitty bar or shitty restaurant, so you choose one of the above and after 30 minutes start pondering out loud, "This is why I work so much, because what else is there to do."
"If I drink this I'm just going to have to pee, and I might get a hangover, and $8! are you joking, god what has life come to..."
The world seems geared towards children, people with children, and old people, like the entire economy forgot about a huge segment of the population, or maybe it's cause there is no money to be made by twenty somethings because...

You Get Paid Shit

You get a job, the hours are chaotic, but it's what you want to be doing with your life so you suffer through. You went to college for this, dreamed of graduating, getting this exact job, buying a house, a nice car and finding a wife, too bad you are making just below the poverty threshold and those tens of thousands in student loans will prevent you from getting even the most insignificant of personal loans. 
I once saw some photos from a Walmart protest, on the sign it read, "I make $8.45 an hour," and my first, nay only, thought was, "holy shit, I barely make more than this Walmart employee who is complaining, and I have five figures in debt and four years of my life gone on for that extra 50 cents an hour."
Good old Google, allowing me to find photographs I reference.
Don't worry, I also don't get benefits, work ridiculously long hours with no break and have to pay union dues, so in the end me and Walmart protester make about the same hourly and I don't even get the 10% employee discount, which would totally be useful because...

You Dress Funny

Cloths cost money, quite a bit of money, which is one of the shocking revelations of adulthood I have yet to come to terms with. When things cost a lot of money and you don't make a lot of money then it's unlikely you are going to obtain such things. So you continue through life wearing the cloths you have, which were cool five years ago and for a dopey college student. You are now an adult, by societies standards, and you have the beginnings of a career. So you go to work with dinosaurs on your shirts and shoes that should have been replaced 3,000 miles ago.
What 27 looks like to high school kids.
You become happy with just assembling an outfit that doesn't have any holes in it. You borrow dress cloths from friends when you have interviews or special occasions. You believe any shirt without a cartoon on it is "dressy," because...

You Think You Are A Kid, The World Thinks You Are An Adult

The world has expectations of a twentysomething, most of which consist of not wearing brightly colored clothing, wandering around the mall and hitting on the barely out of high school girl at the pretzel stand. You don't see yourself as 27, you have more in common with 18-year-olds than 30-year-olds, even if the age difference should suggest otherwise. You make no money and can't afford the things that symbolize adulthood, houses, cars, jet skis, so you just continue on wearing the cartoon shirts, driving the beat up car and being a mall rat because you can't afford to do what the world expects you to do.

The world treats you like an adolescent with low pay, little respect and constant condescending looks from old people, so why should you be expected to grow up. And remember that wife you dreamed about getting, while she is either in the same boat as you, which makes the likelihood of affording a wedding or the financial stability to start a family, unrealistic, or she, like the rest of the world, thinks you should grow up and then she leaves you for some mid-thirties CPA who owns a nice Hyundia Elentra and doesn't live in a studio apartment where pizza boxes are considered furniture.

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