With the anniversary of my 25th trip round the sun quickly approaching as I clamor to pull together a soiree honoring this rumored “milestone birthday,” I cannot help but reminisce about the last time I donned a crown and wreaked havoc, my 21st.
Oh 21-year-old me, you were so tan, so skinny, so stupid. Don’t tell Daddy, but I can honestly say that I’ve probably learned more in the past four years than my entire adolescence, and since I am probably not going to get that Balenciaga bag I’ve been hinting at, I might as well pass along these gifts of knowledge to you ever so entitled millennials.
1. Friendship cleanse.
Much like your closet after a winter of Netflix and Oreos, you must cleanse your immediate friendship circle. You have no time, energy, let alone hours, to text everyone of your 500+ Facebook friends to compare bowel movements and discuss which THOT on the Bachelor you’re slut shaming that week. If your conversations are 60 percent fighting over who’s shittier at keeping in touch, 20 percent “what’s new” and 20 percent ~”i miss you”~, it’s time to re-focus. The best and most rewarding friendships are self-sufficient ones. My true best friends are those who I can not speak to for a month, but as soon as we re-connect it’s as if no time has passed at all. These people understand that you work for a warlord and have adapted their expectations without holding grudges. Let’s face it, you already “don’t have time for the gym,” what makes you think you can keep up a texting convo and fit in a 9 p.m. mani, like… no.
Case and point: If her presence would cause personal discomfort whilst you purchased Plan B, it’t time to cut her loose.
2. Not having a job right out of college is perfectly fine, not having a plan isn’t.
Our neighbors to the East expect recent college graduates to return home and barista for two years after college while we force ourselves into miserable, barely minimum wage careers in call centers. Don’t feel the pressure to have the offer lined up right out of college. If you can afford it (meaning with a little gypsying you can delay starving to death), then you can afford to shop around for careers.
Secondly, unpaid internships are nothing to scoff at. It’s basically a temp-to-hire position, except the people in the hiring position feel somewhat guilty for enslaving you for the summer and will most likely bust ass to get you hired if you put in the effort. Whatever you do, don’t think you’ll get anywhere sitting at home on your ass, pinging away on LinkedIn while simultaneously checking off your Netflix bucket list. “I’m too good to intern/throwout day-old muffins at Starbucks” is not an acceptable answer for “so what have you been doing these past three months?” Regardless of how fancy your degree is, you have to start somewhere. #RagsToRiches
3. Big risks = Big rewards.
Go with your gut. Take the risk. Show some confidence. Whether it be speaking up during a meeting, speaking up for yourself when someone disrespects you, or buying a guy a drink at the bar, do it! Swallowing silence or holding back will eat you alive and lead to your ultimate self-destruction. Think about it, 95-year-old you is somewhere cursing you on a front porch as we speak, you fucking pussy.
4. You won’t find love on dating apps.
Only socially disabled lemmings and mouth breathers…Oh dear the creatures I have encountered on Tinder! NO ONE is looking for love on these apps. Just make your profile something like, “If I sit on your face, will you eat your way to my heart?” and be done with it. If you aren’t there to fuck, why are you there? Stop being a tease and call a spade a spade…or a fuck a fuck.
5. Weeknights are not school nights.
Work is not hard. Imagine work with three kids, a dirty house, an aching back, and an overweight body that bloats at just the sight of a french fry. That betch is too busy and tired for the afterparty on a Tuesday, you ain’t. Adderall, gatorade, Mozzerella sticks, take a nap after work, chug a triple expresso, YOU WILL GET THROUGH THIS. Your skin cells will never reproduce as fast as they do now, your butt will never look as tight and your tolerance will never be as high.
6. A number is no big deal.
Don’t get caught up in how many partners you’ve had. Life is all about significant experiences (aka orgasms) and “numbers” are bullshit. I’m not saying hand it out like Subway #eatfresh coupons, but not sleeping with someone just because you don’t want to hit a certain digit, or sleeping with someone JUST BECAUSE it won’t increase your number is not healthy or without slut guilt. Don’t worry what your friend with the manilla folder sex life will think of you, make out with a stranger or give that guy your number. Just wear a condom because even guys in Sperrys from good families have STDs.
7. Find an outlet or you will self implode.
Being an adult is hard without that third party support. The last thing you want to listen to after a MARE of a day is Courtney, your random roommate venting about her terrible job that she continues to drudge through every day. Negative energy is cyclical, instead of passing it along, do something positive. Join a gym (I mean duh), blog about something, start cooking (it’s a 3 for 1–healthy, cheap, and an outlet), join a team or take a class. Whatever it is make sure it’s something selfish that you can lose yourself in and hit reset on your emotions. Personally, I like to get really stoned every Sunday and get caught up in multiple retail orgasms between T.J.Maxx and Trader Joe’s.
9. The Mourning Period is real.
Don’t be afraid, but there’s a week in October when you die a little inside once you physically start accepting your stumble into adulthood. While all your friends are snapchatting from the stadium, “studying” on a sun deck, and always naked, you are sitting in a cubicle on a Saturday comparing old profile pics to your ghost glow, eating a deli salad where you have to pick out wilted spinach, and trying to manipulate Excel to lie to you about how quickly you’ll be able to scrape yourself out of debt. Wow…that was bleak…NEVERFEAR!! You will get through this and one day you will return to campus and make it rain at the local dive just like you dreamed of. The #gloryyears are apparently ahead of us and soon you’ll be getting that money while your little sister is still hustling free campus events for weekend food.
10. Credit card debt ain’t cute.
Let me set the scene: Your first paycheck rolls in and for the first time, your balance rolls into the four digit mark, hot damn!! A wave of relief rushes over you as you add some protein on that salad and hey, why not a diet coke?! Treat yoself amiright?!?! Hold on Trinidad James, you got that pap-er now, but before you splurge for that quick-dry or get in a cab just to take it a couple of blocks up, hold the swipe for a second. The best advice I can give you is to not spend money you don’t have.
There aren’t any 50 year olds at $1 beers. Unless you’re Zuckerberg, you aren’t supposed to be ballin’ right out of the pen. There is nothing wrong with not being able to afford things, it’s expected and you shouldn’t force it because there really isn’t anyone you should feel you need to catch up with. More importantly, one day the most perfect pair of boots in your size will be at a sample sale, your eyes will meet, your heartbeat will quicken, and you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them. Don’t you wanna be able to afford to take those boots home and make sweet sweet stylish love to them? Those boots…YOUR boots deserve more than that.
13. You are not too busy to talk to your parents.
They yo OG homies man. They made you who you are and they spent the better part of their lives putting you first and putting your happiness before theirs. They are your biggest cheerleaders and a talk with them will do more for your psyche then you will ever know. It will remind you of home and that you aren’t alone in this crazy negative big ball of chaos. So go ahead..break from scrolling to call your mom. Cuz lord knows she can’t read your texts without her readers, and those bitches are always lost/on her head.
14. The grass is not greener, it’s dyed and dead underneath.
No one is as happy as they appear on Facebook. You know how many pictures it took to get that perfect lighting and angle? Newsflash: That shit is posed. Do you have time to take 15 “candid” shots? How do you have time with all the fun you are having?!!? Don’t be fooled, people who seem to have incredible lives on social media are just tryng to fill the shallow hole in their current life with lies, while those who are actually living are out living not documenting it.
15. Yes, your boss sucks, get over it.
She sucks, she will always suck and there is nothing you can do about it. The sooner you accept it and figure out how to work with her the better. Senior employees are not supposed to learn to work with you, you are supposed to learn to work with them. Being able to use strategy to manipulate people to get what you want is the most satisfying experience known to man. It’s a high you can’t fathom and will make you an unstoppable force. Instead of dragging on your cig while pacing in the stairwell, take a deep breath and accept her for who she is and move past it.