Tuesday, September 04, 2007

the end of the beginning.

18 years.

I was a baby once. I crawled and drooled and pooped and made funny noises and chewed on things. That was the beginning of things.

And time went by and before anyone knew it, I was a kid. We all were kids, all of a sudden. I was very concerned with things like recess and playstation and cookies and grandma's house. I waited all year for summer and day camp, and knew that my mom would always be at home with peanut butter and jelly waiting for me after school.

And more time went by, and I was a "young man". I never really understood what it meant to be a young man. I took it to mean that everyone expects you to grow up but they know you're not going to. It's like they set themselves up to be disappointed. All of a sudden there was long division and algebra and book reports and essays and lots and lots of homework. Who you sat with at lunch was a big deal. There was lots of sports and brand name t-shirts, a lot of boyfriends and girlfriends. And no one really cared about each other anymore.

The "young man" stage quickly turned into "ok, time to grow up now". Nothing was ever really different from being a young man, except there was more of everything. There was more homework, more papers, more books to read and presentations to give. There was more sports and cliques and boyfriends and girlfriends, all of them more places I didn't fit.

"time to grow up" turned into "grow the fuck up already." I ditched a lot of school to go play hackey sack with all the kids who are going to change the world someday, but at the time they smoked a lot of weed instead.

And now I've grown up, I guess. Somehow, I got to college. I work all day and save my money. I have a "plan for my life," whatever that means. My parents say they're proud of me. They say I'm going to do great at school, and that I'll do great at my job. I don't know if that matters to me. I do what I do because I want to. Somehow that makes it more rebellious, I suppose.

I want my transition into "grown up" to be abrupt. I know many people I've grown up with who are lingering around their pasts. They're going to college in packs, or staying at home. I cannot understand them. We grew the fuck up already, right? Just as we had to leave the ground and learn to walk, or leave the playground to learn long division, we have to ditch our pasts now. Right?

We grew the fuck up already. Just like our parents and teachers and culture told us we had to. It's time for us to leave them in the dust. I know I am.

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