Well folks, it was bound to happen sooner or later. Last week, I turned 23-years-old. I can’t say it came as a surprise to me, though. I managed to squeeze a solid 22 years out of that stone called life and now it’s time for me to stop having fun, get married, and get a real job.
I can’t help but cringe anytime someone jokingly asks, “So, you feel any older?” Yes, but of course! These last 364 days, my body remained in a time-stasis and it wasn’t until this anniversary day of my birth that I suddenly felt the last year’s worth of change ripple through my aging body.
Want to know how it feels to be 23? It feels an awful lot like being 22, except for the sad fact that the cute animal calendar hanging in my kitchen will soon be rendered obsolete by the trials of time. Sure, my life has changed since September 2012 but so has everyone else’s. I could rattle off a list of feats I’ve accomplished, friends I’ve made, or even mention the new bands I’ve started listening to, but I’m sure you have more important things to do (like watch Breaking Bad) and instead of recounting my experiences, I’d rather focus on making new ones.
It’s not that I’m completely ignoring the hypothetical new candle on my birthday cake this year; rather, I’m more embracing of it.
Take the following situation as an example: the girlfriend and I were putting away my laundry the other night. Like most humans, there are some items that I’ll hang up in my closest, some that I’ll fold and tuck away neatly, and some that I’ll haphazardly toss into a pile before throwing into a drawer—socks fall into the latter category.
“You’re 23. You’re old enough to wear matching socks,” my girlfriend informed me, with a voice that I recognized as being half joking, half sincere. Sure, Don Draper probably doesn’t wear mismatched Fruit of the Loom socks, but I’m not a senior partner in an advertising firm, and my feet sure as hell aren’t Don Draper’s feet. It’s not like anyone except me has to tolerate my uncoordinated footwear, so why should this be even the slightest indication of my state of maturity?
I had tater tots for dinner the other night; I have exactly two Toy Story posters hanging in my bedroom; if I’m already lying in bed at night and I haven’t brushed my teeth yet, I’ll forgo getting up and just go to sleep. I’m not trying to illustrate myself as some form of man-baby, but rather issuing a quick reminder to all you not-so-young young adults: growing up doesn’t mean growing up, no matter how unmatched your socks may be.
So it goes,