Twenty-Something

13 Dec

I’m tired of being in my twenties.

Mostly I am tired of this idea, carried both by twenty-somethings and others, that they’re the only ones who can change the world. When you’re in your twenties, you’re fresh out of college, you’re filled with your original, flawless ideas about how to change everything, and you’re an undiscovered genius who would be a hero if only someone would pay attention to him. Then, when you don’t manage to inculcate the epic paradigm shift you were so confident your youthful exuberance could accomplish, The New York Times gets to spend the next few years talking about how you’re the worst generation ever.

I don’t have any expectation like that for myself anymore. I’m supposed to change the world, but I can barely change my jeans more than once a week.

I think part of my disconnect from my own age group also stems from the fact that I have a girlfriend I have been going strong with for three years. That renders the majority of social activities of people in my age group meaningless to me. When you think about it, so much of the idea of “night life” for someone around my age revolves around getting sex. You go to a bar to get drunk enough to lower your inhibitions to talk to a girl. You go to a club to dance with girls. You get dressed up nice so you can attract girls. The whole act of “going out” loses a lot of meaning to me when that’s no longer a priority for me.

There’s always this feeling, when you’re my age, that you should always be moving onto the next thing. There’s always something bigger ahead of you in the grand scheme of things, always something even more important that’s another step towards getting your place in the sun. I am really tired of always moving towards a goal that seems to move with you.

I feel like I’d be more comfortable in my forties. Aside from the fact that I’m still in grad school, the truth is I have a job, an apartment, a hobby, and a steady relationship. I’ve got a routine. I feel ready to just settle and let this be all my life has to be, because I’m enjoying it.

If I was forty there wouldn’t be this expectation that I be constantly energetic, constantly filled with ideas and solutions, and constantly good looking. I’ve all but given up on my appearance. I have no motivation to look good for anyone.

I think I’ve adopted the mindset most people have when they reach their forties anyway: As long as I’m comfortable and at least mildly satisfied, the only other thing I want is to just be left alone.

“Potential” is a word always thrown at people my age. I’m tired of having potential. The only potential I see is the potential to be disappointed if my routine gets disrupted.

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One Response to “Twenty-Something”

  1. Aubrey 12/14/2010 at 12:23 am #

    Hey you haven’t *totally* given up. Sometimes, you even wear real pants.

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