In a few days, I will officially arrive in the precarious territory that is my late 20s. In order to mark this (not) significant transition in my life, I have decided to contribute to the canon of twenty-something writing – the insipid, self-obsessed, “Thought Catalog” style of writing in which being young, educated, and obligation-less is apparently the worst thing in the world. Why emulate a style of writing that I detest so much? Because there’s no better way to honor my early 20s than to be an ironic, hypocritical hipster.
27 Lessons That I learned Before 27:
- When a recipe calls for 4 strips of bacon, it is probably not meant for a single serving.
- The best way to overcome chronic lateness is to move to California where everyone is chronically late.
- The Trans-Siberian orchestra creates a terrifying Christmas ambiance.
- No matter what anyone says, Mariah Carey circa 1993 always brings the party.
- Travel and constant movement delays, suppresses, and distracts from personal issues, but it usually does not resolve them. Problems travel too.
- Speaking of which, when you travel with a Gnome, there will be more pictures of the gnome than there will be of you and the human friends you are traveling with.
- Trust your gut. She probably likes you too.
- Everyone – not just you—is busy. There are, however, tiers of business. Having a child is being busy. Watching the Marla Sokoloff edition of MTV Cribs is not busy.
- “Conservative” politics is not synonymous with bad and “Liberal” is not synonymous with good. There are some extremely kind, giving people who identify as conservative and there are some extremely close-minded, self-interested liberal people.
- Unconditional love is impossible, but your parents come pretty damn close.
- Just because you can buy 50 McNuggets for less than 20 dollars does not mean you should.
- You are capable of eating 50 McNuggets in one sitting.
- Eating 50 McNuggets in one sitting will make you very dehydrated.
- When in doubt, don’t even attempt to pronounce “ganache” and “duvet.”
- People who want to better the communities in which they are deeply invested are doing wonderful work. People who want to “change the world” in its totality – change the geographies they’ve never heard of, cultures they are not familiar with, languages they cannot speak, and people they have never met – will probably do more harm than good.
- James Franco is not the problem. You not writing enough is the problem.
- When in doubt, just ask a gay man.
- When your parents are Vietnamese refugees, every problem you have is always futile – i.e. “I am taking too many credits this semester.” < “I escaped war by sitting on a fishing boat for days until we landed in Hong Kong.”
- It is possible to live off of the last 20 dollars in your pocket until your next paycheck: Eggs, bread, Tecate, enough quarters for one load of laundry washing and about 30 minutes of drying.
- When you yell “What’s the meaning of life!” at Dave Chappelle, it’s considered heckling.
- The more you read and the more schooling you get, the more you realize you know nothing at all. Don’t freak out – that’s just a good education doing its work.
- If the first thing you hear walking into a hostel is the techno remix of “Set Fire to the Rain” from Adele blasting from a desktop computer, get the fuck out of there.
- The dancing cartoon monkeys adorning your pillowcase? Not a good conversation piece.
- The term “assless chaps” is redundant.
- Screaming, “I’M A LESBIAN, DUMBASS,” is an effective way of warding off cat callers. Except if you’re in Las Vegas.
- Cool feelings come when you least plan them, anticipate them, or expect them. For instance, recall the time when your dog bit your girlfriend. Then recall your mom chastising the dog with “Don’t bite family!”
- The day you learned how to take constructive criticism and revise your writing accordingly was the day your life became infinitely better on all fronts.
Bonus: Reading everything. Mark from Step by Step is definitely a celebrity. And that was really fun, but don’t fucking do that again.