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13

Feb

The 29 Worst Things About Being In Your 20’s

1. Realizing that, post 21, there is not a whole lot in the way of “awesome milestone birthday” that you really look forward to, and that birthdays just get progressively more depressing.

2. The awkward transition from college which convinced you that you were going to get an awesome job in an economy which has just about none of those, and is filled with people who basically mock you for not being able to get your shit together.

3. Having to pay back debt.

4. Realizing that you’re not able to drink and/or party in the same way you once were, and that debilitating hangovers are becoming more and more of a reason to avoid a lot of the social outings you’re invited to.

5. Understanding how much of everything seems to center around drinking, and how many of your friends seem to be going from “cool party person” to borderline alcoholic.

6. Having to rent your own apartment and going through the circus of paperwork and rejection and false leads which that entails.

7. Having to deal with terrible roommates or people you sublet from because you weren’t financially stable enough to get your own lease.

8. Suddenly fielding all kinds of inappropriate questions about where your relationship is “going” and if it is really “serious,” where just a few short years ago you were able to date whomever you wanted for whatever reason your heart desired.

9. Gaining weight when you eat all the junk food you are now old enough to buy on your own.

10. Having to maintain a somewhat classy presence on social media and not being unconcerned with whether or not people can see a bong in the background of your profile picture because you now have a job and image to maintain.

11. Slowly growing to hate almost everyone on your Facebook because they’re all becoming boring and judgmental, and you secretly know that you are also becoming these things.

12. Not understanding cool internet things occasionally, and feeling too old for some of the more fleeting trends.

13. Sleeping with people who are very much still in the process of maturing sexually and aren’t exactly the most generous partners in bed.

14. Being poor.

15. Being surrounded by ads and friends and salespeople and trendy bloggers who are essentially pushing you to buy all of the cool shit you know you absolutely cannot afford, because you seem to be in the target demographic for everything.

16. Going through constant cycles of love and hatred with the internet.

17. Being incredibly dependent on the internet for everything, and simultaneously understanding how much your time spent on it is ruining your ability to enjoy life outside your apartment.

18. The realization that you are seen as a lame person if you just happen to be more introverted and want to stay in on a lot of the days where people are going out and doing quote-unquote fun shit.

19. The struggle that is online dating.

20. Not feeling like you understand your place in things, or what generation you actually belong to. Being unsure of whether or not to consider yourself an adult.

21. Feeling cheated out of what you had always imagined adulthood would look like, and resentful towards a generation of hardcore debters that left us a relatively bleak financial and professional landscape.

22. Not understanding how some people can seem so insanely successful in the face of so many of your peers struggling to maintain basic life skills.

23. Humblebragging.

24. Feeling forced to care about pop culture that you don’t actually care about because everyone else on the internet seems to insist that you care about it.

25. Wanting to travel, and not having the money to do it.

26. Getting bitterly jealous at people who seem to be living it up in their youth more than you are, and enjoying all of the things you are missing out on because you work too much for too little money.

27. Apartment envy.

28. Unpaid internships.

29. Not being sure what the future holds for you, and feeling embarrassed for being so unsure because you feel like you should have “gotten it together” by now, as you are at an age which you’d always pictured in your mind as being “adult.” Still feeling like a little kid planning on what they want to be when they grow up.

03

Jan

Things Single People Hate

27 Dresses

1. Being reminded you are single or told that, for any reason, your lack of being romantically attached to anyone makes you a less desirable or fit human being.

2. Getting semi-threatening messages from OKCupid. A couple days before the Mayan apocalypse that never came, the service was sending out emails asking its customers if they wanted to die alone. My response was, “No, I don’t want to die alone, and I also don’t want to use your service anymore.” Do people still use Plenty of Fish these days? Did they ever? Eh, there’s always Scruff.

3. Attending couples events. This year, I thought I had accidentally walked into a couples Thanksgiving, and inside I was screaming, “DEAR SWEET GOD NO.” Because the party was being hosted by two of my most beloved lesbian friends, and cute couples know other cute couples, who all regale each other in their mutual couple loveliness. However, I found the singles’ group, and then a dog bit someone’s lip off. So it turned out fine.

4. Getting set up by your family members, especially around major holidays. I don’t know what it is about Christmas that makes my guy cousins think that I would be well-suited for the only eligible male homosexual that they know, but they seriously need to quit it. Next Christmas, I’m just saying I have herpes.

5. Being asked why you aren’t in a relationship. The person who is asking is really trying to flatter you — with the implicit suggestion being that someone as gorgeous and wonderful and funny, etc., etc., as you should be in a relationship. But they don’t really want you to answer that question, and you don’t answer to have to answer it, unless Shakespearian monologues on the subject are allowed.

6. Blind dates. Don’t set us up on them. Don’t try to convince us that THIS PERSON IS DIFFERENT! and THEY ONLY MASTURBATED IN PUBLIC THAT ONE TIME SO IT’S OKAY! THEY’RE REFORMED BY THE STATE! There’s almost nothing you can say that would entice us to be flung at your random cast off, unless it’s the words “Bradley” and “Cooper.” I would date that blind, deaf, mute or any shit he’s into. My body is ready.

7. Having other people remind you that the romantic comedy you’re watching isn’t good. Look, it has Katherine Heigl in it. I know it’s going to suck. Am I going to watch it anyway? Yes. Am I going to hate myself for it? Yes. Am I going to complain about its sexist representation of women later? Double yes. So, just leave me alone and let me absorb the outdated gender dynamics. It’s part of my process.

8. The calorie count on the side of the carton. Like the last one, everyone hates this. There’s nothing worse than trusting Ben and Jerry to steward your Saturday night alone at home with Friday Night Lights and Tim Riggins’ perfectly disheveled hair and then being reminded what it will cost you the following day at the gym. I don’t want to know that what I’m eating contains as much fat as every other thing I’ve eaten that day. Look away, Jerry. Just look away.

9. Being told you haven’t met the right person. Duh. If you had met them, you would probably be with them.

10. Seeing people you hate getting engaged on Facebook. It’s completely juvenile, and no one likes to talk about it, but who wants to be reminded of the happiness of people you loathe? Do you want to be that hyper-evolved person that’s all “good for them!” and then drinks a glass of sherry or some shit? Yes, you do. But you probably are not that person, and I don’t really know what sherry is. When I found out that an old schoolmate of mine that I hated with the fire of a thousand suns is getting married recently, while I still have to trick people into sleeping with me by promising them candy, I screamed like Regina George eating a Kalteen bar. It wasn’t my proudest moment, but it was real. And you know you’ve been there.

11. Not singing along to Kelly Clarkson. What else are you supposed to do when you hear “Since U Been Gone”? I didn’t know that there was legally another option, and I happen to be a rule follower. I’m just doing my civic duty.

12. Being told that everything happens for a reason. Why do we hate hearing this? 1) You can’t prove that, Nostradamus. 2) Even if everything does happen for a reason, you can barely figure out how to work your stove. There’s no way you’re going to know what that reason is. 3) It’s still not that helpful, and when uttered after a breakup, only leads to more overanalyzing. Which no one ever needs. 4) The existence of Kimye. There is no reason for that. Disproven.

13. Those moments where everyone else is sleeping with someone but you. This is why God invented Double-Stuff Oreos. You need the extra love.

14. The word “soulmate.” The word “soulmate” was invented to sell candy to people on special occasions and make up fake corporate holidays that mean absolutely nothing to anyone. (Sweetest Day, anyone? Has anyone ever been depressed not to have a date on Sweetest Day? No, because that’s not a thing.) One person cannot complete you. The only person who completes you is you. Besides, both single and partnered people rely on a lot of people for their happiness, not just their significant other. I live next to Pete’s Pizza in Chicago, and I know Pete isn’t real, but he’s more fulfilling than any man could ever be. If we don’t have lots of soulmates, including pizza mascots, life gets lonely waiting for one person to be everything to you.

15. Getting life advice that starts: “You could find someone if you just…” If you ever want to see a single person flip over a table, tell them that they are doing their love life wrong with that statement. Go ahead. Once a friend of mine told me that I was too much like Ross from Friends, the loyal best friend character, and that I would never be leading man material. I reminded him that Ross ended up with Rachel at the end, so he was completely misreading that series. Then I got a new friend. It’s not that we don’t want to hear what you have to say; you just need to be careful about how you say it.

16. Hearing that you’re “too picky,” need to “get out there,” that you should “try harder” or need to “settle down already!” I think that if you tell a single person that they aren’t trying hard enough, a jury would side with that single person if they murdered you in cold blood. Think about almost every girl who attends a club on a Saturday night and ludicrous lengths they go to in order to attract attention. THEY WEAR SHORT SKIRTS WITHOUT LEGGINGS IN TEN DEGREE WEATHER. If they were to try harder, they would have hypothermia. They need to just do them, have fun and not worry about impressing everyone else so much. Independence is sexy, as is not getting frostbite.

17. Having people equate relationships with happiness. My parents’ marriage completely disproves the notion that you have to be coupled to be a fulfilled person, because sometimes relationships can be bitter, horrible things like Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger or everything that transpired during Fleetwood Mac’s existence. The grass isn’t greener anywhere, and sometimes that grass leaves voicemails on their daughter’s cellphone about what a “rude pig” she is.

18. The fact that almost every single song on the radio is a love song. Seriously, can’t y’all think of anything else to sing about? Aren’t there wars and fiscal cliffs going on? Why can’t Taylor Swift just take an interest in our state’s economic woes? She can break up with Congress for us. Because we are never, ever getting back together, John Boehner. Like, ever.

19. Thinking about the fact that Kim Kardashian will reproduce before you will. On the bright side, though, we will always have the punchlines. This event has single-handedly justified the existence of Twitter to me. My favorite tweet about it comes from @DepressedDarth: “Kim and Kanye are having a baby, finally the Death Star has a good enough reason to destroy Earth.” For real though, I’m thinking about adopting — just to win at having babies. There’s no way she’s beating me to it. Anyone want to raise some adopted Himalayan whistle children with me?

17

Oct

The NHL lockout: Progress?

The NHL has made a new offer to the NHLPA in an attempt to re-start negotiations and put an end to a lockout that threatens the entire 2012-2013.  With many NHL players already active in other professional leagues around the world, NHL fans are looking for anything that might signal a return to NHL hockey.  Before we start popping the champagne, let’s take a look at the owners’ latest offer.

First, there were not many details released about the new offer.  What we know is that the offer would govern at least the next six years, and proposes a 50-50 split of HRR or Hockey Related Revenue.

You’ll recall that part of the reason for the lockout is that players were taking in approximately 57% of HRR as the last collective bargaining agreement expired.  The new offer also removes the league’s demand that salaries be “rolled back” on current player contracts (those at the 57% HRR levels).

In other words, the owners are willing to honor the existing salary contracts they signed with the players.  Imagine that!

There are also indications that the league is still pushing for a maximum contract length of five years.  The offer would also allow players to achieve unrestricted free agency at age 28 or after eight years of service–one additional year compared to the last collective bargaining agreement.

The league is trying to save a full 82 game season, with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman saying of the offer, “It is our best shot at preserving an 82-game regular season and [Stanley Cup] Playoffs.” The head of the NHLPA, Donald Fehr, also had very brief comments about the offer:

“We, of course, share that view and would like to get a full 82-game season in. And, so, what our hope is that after we review this that there will be a feeling on the players’ side that this is a proposal from which we can negotiate and try to reach a conclusion. But, we are not in a position to make any comments about it beyond that at this point.”

The NHLPA’s executive committee, consisting of the bargaining committee and player representatives from all 30 teams had a conference call scheduled for 5pm Eastern today to discuss the new offer.

While this latest move by the NHL is cause for cautious optimism in my opinion,several potential stumbling blocks remain.

The largest one that I see is the very definition of HRR.  The owners presumably still want to change the definition of HRR to include less items, thus lowering the amount of HRR, which in turn lowers the amount of cash they are required to split with the players. How does the new offer deal with this issue?

One other potential problem is revenue sharing.  This was a big one for the players in the last round of negotiations and chances are that they still want to see a significant increase in the percentage of revenues shared to help struggling teams.

The devil will definitely be in the details on this one.  We’ll just have to wait and see how this all unfolds.

I, for one hope, that both sides will recognize the damage they are doing to their product and fan base and get a deal done.

14

Oct

This can only end in tears

I should be going to the Hawks first home game tonight.  I should be rocking the red and bouncing around the office like a shaken can of soda.

Instead I am despondent, miserably face-down on a couch wearing a college sweatshirt while “All By Myself” plays on a loop.

When what I really want is to show Bettman what happens when he comes between me and my boys on Date Night.

Anyway I wanted to explain the lockout to those who are wondering, beacuse as of lately I having been teaching Hockey 101, everything from the game to the business side! (which I don’t mind, because once you understand it, thats how you fall in love with it).

 Everything you wanted to know about the nuts and bolts of the current NHL labor dispute can be found here.

In 2005, the NHL and the NHLPA (the players’ union) negotiated a collective bargaining agreement (“CBA”) that put in place a so-called “hard salary cap” for the first time.

You’ll recall that this CBA was reached only after the entire 2004-2005 season was lost to a lockout.  At the time, the salary cap was the main issue, with the owners essentially claiming that the players made too much money and the skyrocketing player salaries needed to be reigned in.  In the beginning, the salary cap was set at $39 million per year, per team.  That salary cap has crept up, until this past season it was set at $64.3 million while the salary cap floor, or the minimum a team had to spend, was $48.3 million.

So, you might be thinking that the owners effectively triumphed after the ’04-’05 lockout with the cap.

And they did.

Except they didn’t, according to themselves.

Under the terms of the same CBA that just expired on September 15th, the players were entitled to 57% of last season’s hockey related revenuegenerated by the league.  Now, the league claims that this figure, 57%, needs to be reduced because many NHL teams are effectively bleeding money and player contracts are out of control.

I know what you are thinkingYou’re thinking, “Aren’t the owners the ones who give these huge contracts to players?”  And you’re also thinking, “Wait, doesn’t the league have record revenue right now of over $3.3 billion (US).”

The answers are yes and yes.

The owners essentially want to pay the players less, far less, than the $1.87 billion the players were paid in the previous season and save themselves from giving out big contracts to players.  The league’s initial offer would have the players earning 43% of hockey related revenue.  The last offer from the league had the players getting 49% in the first season of the CBA and then backing down to 47% as the CBA expired over 5 years.

This would effectively have the players giving back millions of dollars to start.  There are also a few tweaks to free agency that the owners want (10 years of service before a player is eligible for free agency, elimination of arbitration, etc.), however the money pie and how big of a slice the players get is still the main issue.

The players for their part, are not interested in giving back money to the owners, unless that money will be used by the league for revenue sharing to assist weaker small-market teams.  You know, those teams that the league claims are bleeding money.  The union effectively wants to ensure that the players get no less than the $1.8 billion they got last year.

The players’ last offer was a little complicated, but essentially they want to take a 2% increase over the $1.8 billion figure in the first year, a 4% increase from that in year 2, and a 6% increase over that in year 3.  After that, it gets a little nutty so I won’t get into that.  What’s key though, is that the players have positioned their numbers based on 7.1% revenue growth, which is what the league had after the last work stoppage.

Over the course of 5 years, the two sides have a difference of around $1 billion.  The 7.1 % revenue growth is important because that’s a big “if.”  There are no guarantees that the league revenue will grow at that rate going forward.

At the end of the day the players want to ensure they keep at least the $1.8 billion they received last year, and the owners want to reduce that figure upfront.  Unfortunately there seems to be no end in sight to this dispute.  It seems that both sides have some room to give.

I hope they figure out how to split up their $3.3 billion sometime soon.

With all this being said I still stand behind my employers… THE PLAYERS! I fully support the NHLPA and what they work for! 

18

Jul

5 Questions We’re Afraid To Ask Ourselves



It’s hard to ignore that some questions — some thoughts that may occasionally cross our minds — are just out of bounds. Whether from familial pressure, what all our friends seem to be doing, or our high expectations for ourselves, we try to stay on a certain course, without thinking too much about where we might be headed. But these five questions, more than any others, bring up some possible ugliness that we often find ourselves unable to face directly in the mirror.

1. Do I really want a relationship, or am I just afraid of being alone?

As we get older, people around us start pairing off — and never is the progression from “Let’s all see how many Jager shots we can do in a row, single buddies!” to “We are thinking about renting a place on the beach for a week or so this summer” more pronounced than in your 20s. It’s hard not to look around and feel like you’re suddenly the odd man out, the one who’s getting picked last for kickball, the third wheel everyone has to feel sorry for and take on their pseudo-dates. And if you’re female, take whatever societal pressure there is to pair up from your peers doing it, and put it to the power of 10. We have the media, more or less since birth, telling us that our manifest destiny in life is to find some rich guy on a (preferably white) horse who will come and rescue us from our stifling jobs as secretaries and take us off to some beautiful four-bedroom in Connecticut.

But is this what we really want? Sure, for some people, finding someone to spend your whole life with is easily in the top three life goals, but it can’t be that way for everybody. And even if it is your goal to find a soulmate, is your ultimate expression of that love going to be in the same cookie-cutter wedding that all of your friends and acquaintances are having? Do you even want to get married? It’s the kind of pressure that is so deeply embedded in us that even when we have someone, even when we’re at our happiest, we can’t help but look over our shoulder and wonder — just briefly — if these are the kinds of decisions we’re making to please all our overbearing relatives, and not actually us.

2. Is this job right for me, and is it what I’m really good at?

In an economy like this, we’re glad just to have a job. We work unpaid internships, temp positions, and anything else that can get us month-to-month, hoping to find a light at the end of a tunnel in the form of a package that includes decent vacation time and health insurance. So it’s no wonder that once we actually land a job — hell, even one only tangentially related to what we actually want to do in life — that we kind of sink into a dangerous complacency of “Whatever, I can afford takeout Thai, this is as good as life is going to get.” We’re encouraged not just to give up on non-career-related goes for our life (such as travel, continued education, or even a new hobby), but we’re also paralyzed by the sense that, should we look elsewhere, we’re going to fall into a bottomless pit of unemployment.

Many of us don’t even really know what we’re good at. We all go through jobs and courses and internships to briefly test the waters, giving an impression of trying to find ourselves, but we end up taking the first thing that sticks because we need it. It’s easy to convince yourself that everyone is meant to hate their job, and that you’re not good enough to be doing anything else, but it’s certainly not any kind of shortcut to happiness.

3. Do I want children, or do I just think I should have them?

Few things are more terrifying than seeing your friends start to have children, and realizing that not only is this time frame in your respective lives acceptable to spawn, but that you are now expected to participate in the lobotomized cooing that is required of everyone to come in contact with a newborn and its proud parents. This is a part of your life that requires baby showers, registries, gifts, play dates, babysitting, and listening to endless talk about the contents of diapers. It’s obviously a momentous event for the couple involved, and understandable that parents like to get together and talk about the one enormous thing they all have in common, but it certainly does make you feel as though this is a club that, one day or another, you will be expected to join. There is a fear that you will have less and less to discuss with your friends, fewer points on which to relate, and an overall sentiment that you are the immature one who has no responsibilities in the form of children, and is therefore not as fully an adult. How many children have been born out of a sense of keeping up with expectations, and doing the “right” thing?

4. Do I need new friends?

One of the easiest quicksands in life to fall into is that of a familiar social circle. You have your group, and your local hangouts, and your usual Friday night plans, and the same hookups and breakups and gossip and exasperation. It feels like when we’re not hanging out with the same group of people, we’re complaining about how we need to get out, and start meeting new friends, and going places that can at least give us new decor to stare at while drinking. But leaving a group — even for a night every other week — is often a very delicate thing to do. Friends can become so complacent with each other, so unwilling to put forth effort, that monotony becomes preferable to even the tiniest bit of risk.

Even when friends are actively dragging you down in some way, they can be impossible to break free from, impossible to see outside of. We feel like we owe exclusivity to these people, and even improving ourselves by trying new things every now and again can be some kind of betrayal. The unfortunate truth is that sometimes people just grow out of each other, and that’s no one’s fault — and yet we can spend years convincing ourselves that we need to keep seeing the same people because, well, that’s what we always do. But making new friends is often the gateway to feeling so much better about the city you might have just months ago felt fed up with — if only we can make the first step.

5. Am I actually happy with my life?

In quiet moments, by yourself, sitting in the home you have created, there is a quiet intimacy to which we are rarely privy. Our phone is always beeping, our news feeds always refreshing, there is someplace to go and people who want to talk to us. We can easily fill our lives, and every last minute of our days, with chatter and distractions that will satiate us and give us the impression that things are happening. But in those quiet moments, when everything is still and no one is reaching out — when we are left with our own company to reflect on the life we’ve built, the people in it, and the place we call home — are we happy?

Of course, none of us are really sure what that means, but it’s probably fair to start by acknowledging how much of it you would change if you could. Do you run down a laundry list of things that could be better, more honest, more fulfilling? And is that desire for more, for better, out of belief that you can achieve, or a desire to impress? At the end of the day, who are we doing this for? Because our boss, our friends, our parents — hell, even our significant others — they aren’t the ones who have to live our lives. We are. And few things can be louder than having to sit in the silence of your own company and think about it.

13

Jun

7 Reasons We Feel So Old


What is being in your twenties if it’s not musing over the drawn-out ten-year process of leaving your childhood and becoming (shudder) an adult? If you can’t spend every birthday from 20 to 30 going, “Oh, my God, I am f-cking ancient. Tell those 19-year-olds in the corner to shut the f-ck up before I rip their fake IDs out of their Ring Pop-covered hands. Ugh,” then what are you doing with your life? This is the time for feeling inappropriately old, and here, the reasons why.

1. Because we suddenly have all this money to pay back.

Back when we were just taking out student loans with impunity and saying, “Mmm, don’t mind if I do!” to every misguided credit card offer that came in the mail the second we turned 18, life was smooth. You need a new couch? Work is for suckers, go get some fake money from the bank and then throw it at the sales guy like a stripper and be like “A gold-plated loveseat, sir, and chop chop — my Bugatti is double-parked.” Or, at least, that’s how it was for me and my friends. How we managed to go several years feeling flush with make-believe cash all the time and not fully realize that one day, a bunch of frowny-face men in suits were going to want to get it back, is beyond me. I think we just imagined that money rained from the sky à la Skittles every so often and we just had to hold our pockets open to get it. Little did we know that, four years later, we would be essentially changing our voicemail to, “I don’t have any more god damn money, why don’t you just come to my house and take the fillings out of my mouth? I’m sorry, banks, I’M SORRY.” Nothing makes you feel like youth is over more than overdue notices.

2. Because our friends are getting married/having kids.

A friend of mine has an old friend from college who was the coolest guy ever, of whom every other guy in the school was extremely jealous, who just embodied awesome. Do you know what that guy is doing now? Getting a one-a-day public Facebook post from his fiancée counting down to their nuptials. She writes things along the lines of “Only x more days until I’m Mrs. So-and-So. Can’t wait to marry my best friend ever — hi future hubby!!!!” (which she then proceeds to like) once a day, on his wall, in front of all of his friends. Just the other day, she posted a picture of a gallon of milk with the same expiration date as their upcoming wedding, as some sort of sign that the day was close. Yeah, the expiration date. And while this is fodder for us all to laugh at, at their expense (and don’t you dare judge me, what the hell is a grown woman doing writing that on a grown man’s wall?), there is a slightly depressing edge to it because you realize that, like dominos, your friends and incredibly lame acquaintances are falling, one by one, into the “grown-up and paired-off” category, and soon you will be the sad one for not having participated. You realize that people who were huge parts of your life are fading away to humiliate themselves on social media and then sort of retreat from society — and you can’t fault them. If it makes them happy, that’s awesome, but it doesn’t soften the blow of you never getting to see them again.

3. Because our relatives are asking invasive questions.

This goes hand-in-hand with the waves of friends settling down, and it only adds insult to injury. Suddenly, the aunts and grandmothers who were once concerned about where you were going to go for summer vacation and how you were going to spend your graduation money are now asking with more than a little desperation in their voices when you’re going to join the ranks of adults yourself. Are you seeing anyone? Do you have a job? What do you do? Do you have your own apartment? Are you going out a lot? No amount of lightness in the voice could ever mask the amount of weight behind these extremely uncomfortable questions — to which there is only one right answer. You are either doing things the “grown-up” way, or you’re still “messing around.” There are only so many times you can go to family holidays alone, or keep working in that restaurant, before their anticipation and judgment just becomes a kind of resignation about your life. The worst may still be when the questions stop altogether — when they know that the answer won’t be what they want and that, even if you’re happy with your life, you haven’t “succeeded.” Man, f-ck relatives. Coming around twice a year just to judge you, we don’t need them.

4. Because we don’t “get it.”

I have both the blessing and the curse of having a 16-year-old cousin, and can safely say that 90 percent of what she talks is completely foreign to me, and I just kind of nod along as she goes off about this amazing new group/song/show/internet thing that I’ve never heard of. I then seek it out on my own, and realize there are veritable universes of pop culture that I am completely oblivious to, and which speak to me in absolutely no way. I have watched young people things over the past few years, like Fred, or Charlie Is So Cool Like, or Skrillex, and I just kind of stare, slack-jawed at the computer while I think to myself, “I cannot possibly have aged out of the relevant bracket this quickly, could I?” I mean, to be fair, I love One Direction — but I feel deeply guilty about it, and every time I see them, I think how they just barely make the cut for my love of them not to be mental statutory rape. You just watch them and you’re like “Oh, my God, those little boys are just so cute,” and then you stop yourself mid-sentence and want to go take a scalding shower. It’s unsettling, and I feel lost, confused, and in need of a blanket and some Backstreet Boys. (By the way, speaking of which, Howie aged like a bottle of fine, fine wine. Google it.)

5. Because our friends are starting to have bomb-ass apartments.

There is this phase that all twenty-somethings pass through (albeit at different times) in which they suddenly get a “real person” apartment and they decorate it with a bunch of inoffensive beige sh-t from IKEA, and they have a stack of fancy magazines, an intimidating bookshelf, and a legitimate entertainment setup. You walk into their place and there’s candles, and an espresso machine, and throw pillows, and they’re just like “Let me grab some of these beautiful stemless wine glasses so we can open up a bottle of red and talk about our office jobs on my couch,” and you’re like, holy f-ck, I am an adult now. At some point, you were teleported into a rom-com in which you are supposed to have actual apartments, with like, mahogany, and video game consoles that you never have time to use, and coordinated kitchen appliances. How are you going to bring people back to your place now and be like, “So I have three chairs and, umm, a couple of milk carts we can stack up to make a fourth one for dinner. Also, the dinner table’s an old door. And dinner is Ramen.” You can’t. You have to step your apartment game up, and quickly. You have to be an adult, too. To IKEA!

6. Because we can’t party like we used to.

There comes a point in all of our twenties when we’re looking for a cab on the street as the birds are chirping, the sun is coming up, and one of your friends is peeing on the corner and you’re just like, “I am too old for this sh-t.” It essentially sounds like all of the birds are laughing at you simultaneously, and you already have a hangover before you even go to bed, and you know you’re going to feel like a corpse for the next few days. Your body just can’t do it the same way anymore, and drinking/dancing in such a way is just essentially kicking it while it’s down. We will eventually have to come to terms with our decreasing elasticity and start scaling back, but somehow do it without becoming the enormous wet blanket who goes home at 11 p.m. after 2.5 beers and talks about how they want to get a lot done tomorrow even though it’s Saturday. Yeah, you don’t want to be that girl, but you have to find a middle ground. Though, let’s be honest, we might never get rid of those occasional white girl wasted evenings. At least, not for now. We just have to scale them back. Please.

7. Because we’re enormous narcissists.

Let’s be honest for a second, we know we’re not old. We know that the only reason it’s okay to even say this is because we’re the opposite of old. We know that there aren’t any actual senior citizens who go on for hours about how decrepit they are, because that would be uncomfortable, because that’s actually true. We’re just the generational equivalent of the thin girl who goes on endlessly about how fat she is just to reaffirm that she is, in fact, quite svelte. It’s hard not to feel old, of course, when you live in a minute-by-minute culture that gets tired of things almost as quickly as they became obsessed with them, that’s natural. But if we step off the internet for five seconds, it’s clear that we’re in the beginning of our real lives, and that everything is open and new for us — that we’ll never have this again. It’s fun to tease ourselves for being out of touch every now and again, but I hope we’re all self-aware enough to accept that being a twenty-something is, in fact, disgustingly young. Now let’s go celebrate.

22

May

8 Ways girl party animals behave like real animals

When I started this post, I was going to write about all the crazy things girls do when they’re drunk. But once I began to write, I quickly noticed a trend of animal behavior; they eat more than T-Rexs, prune like peacocks, and the list goes on. The more I wrote the more I realized that the basis for the term “party animal” is rooted in concrete reality. In fact, the information in this article has been extensively researched (Yahoo!/WikiAnswers) so please do not challenge the integrity of my animal facts. Sarcastic translation: just go with it. And with that, I present to you the eight ways female party animals behave like actual animals
1. They butt heads like rams.

MAYBE WE’RE A LITTLE BUZZED, BUT WE AREN’T DRUNK!

Except we totally are. For whatever reason, a girl’s first reaction to being the least bit drunk is to deny deny deny. I can tell by your glassy stare and the fact that you’ve complimented my eye brows five times that you’re three sheets to the wind — however, you will deny repeating yourself, ask if you can transplant my eyebrows to your face, and tell me once again that you are not drunk.

While the drunk/not drunk argument is the first thing that sloshed girls will butt heads with you about but, it is certainly not the last. Conversations between a drunk girl (DG) and sober person (SP) go a little something like this:

DG: What’s the name of that librarian from high school who wore weird clothes?

SP: Mrs. Stevens.

DG: No! Not her! The one with the puffy shirts and the mustache!

SP: It’s Mrs. Stevens. Remember, we all called her “Captain Stevens.”

DG: No, no the other pirate-ey one!

SP: I’m 100 percent positive it’s her; I had her for home room all four years.

DG: “YOU ARE F-CKING WRONG AND WE CAN ONLY SETTLE THIS DEBATE THROUGH A LOUD BAR ALTERCATION OR CAGE MATCH.

See how quickly that escalated? For your own sake, agree to disagree and move on.

2. They dance like penguins.

When trying to find a mate, penguins do a “courtship dance” to impress their potential love interest. Girls are no different. Except instead of looking for a life partner, we’re just looking for someone (ANYONE!) to grind up on us and show the least bit of attention. And so, we dance. Ludacris says he wants “a lady in the street but a freak in the bed” but most girls are ladies in the street and strippers on the sweaty crowded dance floor. Even girls who aren’t slutty in real life know that all guys enjoy sex (major revelation), so we decide to transform from Gina the lovable sister/aunt/law student to Krystal the naughty nurse who knows her way around a pole. We know that our future husbands will laugh at this ridiculous behavior and appreciate our brains more than any dry humping dance move but for now we’re lonely and desperate for attention, so we booty drop and bring it up slow.

3. They spread love like huskies.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, meet Mishka (above).

Take a few minutes to decompress because if you love that dog as much as I do, you’re a little worked up right now. Ok so, Mishka howls “I love youuuu” with no abandon and God damn it so do we. Before drunk chicks get sad, mean, or sleepy they love to tell everyone how much they well, love them. The bartender opened our beer? Love him. That girl in the bathroom was in our freshman seminar? Love her. The person who’s engagement photos we stalked on Facebook but have never met in person before? Love you. (And your ring by the way.) In all these scenarios we love you and we’re not afraid to say it. We’ll shout/howl it from the rooftops, even if it means admitting to Facebook stalkery. But trust me, this won’t last long; it’s simply the calm before the storm.

4. They strut like peacocks.

When peacocks want attention they spread their feathers and work it. When drunk girls want attention they spread their… wallets and buy a skanky dress from H&M. Dancing on the bar, screaming song lyrics, befriending the DJ; it’s all deadly. When a girl wants attention, believe me — she’ll get it. Even if that means knocking you down on the dance floor. You’ve been warned.

5. They bite heads off like praying mantises.

The female praying mantis is known to bite her partner’s head off after mating. Luckily girls do not do this in the literal sense, but they will figuratively bite your head off like it’s their job. Want to test this theory? Go ahead and see what happens when you try taking a wasted friend home and her vodka-soda-splash-of-cranberry-clouded mind insists that she is having an awesome time and HAS to stay. She doesn’t seem to notice that the heel on one shoe broke off and… yep, her other foot’s bleeding. It’s not a good situation. And when I say it’s not a good situation, I’m not just talking about blood loss, I’m saying that we get MEAN. Not “leave me alone” mean, but “your ex-boyfriend told me you had cankles” mean. We will go there.

Although most guys think that women are pretty outwardly judgmental as it is, I can promise that there’s plenty more where that came from. There are about 12,000 other judgmental wheels turning in a female’s brain at all times. We’re not horrible people, it’s just how we’re wired. What makes us nice people/functioning members of society is our ability to limit these thoughts and see people for the traits that really matter. For the most part, I try to keep unfair judgements to a minimum, although none of my judgements are unfair (don’t ironically wear skinny suspenders and expect me to be open-minded about it). OK — so maybe when my sister and I people-watch at the airport we’re a little judgey. OK — we might as well be Don Rickles. (I think we once said that someone looked like a computer programmer who got hit with a pan.) And boyfriends: just get the f-ck out of the way when you see this tornado of judgement headed in your direction. We will bring up everything that you have ever done wrong in the history of your existence on this earth and by then you’ll be wishing we had literally bitten your head off.

6. They cry like elephants.

First of all, google imaging “elephants crying” is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life. I have a really strong affinity for all things elephant because they are majestic, oversized, and sassy; what’s not to love? Somewhere along the way I learned that elephants are one of the few animals that produce tears of sadness. The elephant cries after a member of the herd dies or they are reunited with a loved one. The drunk girl cries because the pizza delivery guy said she had to pay cash. On New Year’s Eve I cried because I wanted my Mom and she was two rooms away. And don’t even mention the fact that we’re single, because that is like opening pandora’s box of issues/tissues. It’s no secret that women are emotional creatures who feel a lot of feelings, so don’t act surprised when a little vino opens the flood gates. (I recommend a nice bottle of Pinot Grigio and this.

7. They eat like dinosaurs.

Hell hath no fury like a hungry drunk girl. A drunk girl who wants (NEEDS) food is more dangerous then an angry dinosaur who wants her stolen egg back. (We’ve all seen The Flinstones Movie. You haven’t? You don’t get my obscure references? Too bad.) I eat a lot sober so it’s no surprise that after a night of drinking I inhale whatever’s in front of me. But luckily, drunk eating is not the worst for girls like me; it’s the worst for girls who survive primarily on lettuce. When these girls get drunk, let me tell you, they LET LOOSE. I’ve seen a 5’2”, 110 lb. girl eat 3 pieces of pizza, two quesadillas, and and a half pan of brownies in under eight minutes. That’s more caloric action than that girl’s gotten in the last three months. Drinking lowers our eating inhibitions by erasing all the caloric information we’ve spent years obtaining. And not only is our caloric guard down, but drinking is like taking some magic pill that makes even the shittiest pizza (only ordered because the place is open ‘til 4 a.m.) taste like it was cooked by Mario Batalli. Try ordering whatever delicious thing you ate last night the following day. I’ve done it and  trust me, you will not be happy. 

8. They hibernate like bears.

I have never passed out from drinking. I have, however, fallen asleep quite often. And once we’re “asleep” there is no turning back. Once both eyes shut, we are officially dead weight that can only be moved by the strength of two large lumberjacks. Go ahead, try waking us up; it’s not gonna happen. We’ve stored up on chicken tenders and mozz sticks for the long winter’s nap; do not wake us until morning.

01

Apr

quote-book:

(by Words & Lyrics)

04

Mar

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