Friday, June 3, 2011

Live in the Moment

Advice #10 “Things ain’t so bad”

I have found myself picturing my future.  Currently I am a graduate student, working in Philadelphia.  This is the life, my degree is paid for and I am living off a decent stipend, why can’t I just enjoy it.  I have a perfect boyfriend, a healthy family and good friends.  The reason us twenty something’s can not just sit back and enjoy it is because we love drama.

Drama with the boyfriend
No matter how perfect the man is, us twenty something’s have to find a fault.  If he wants to get married, it’s too soon for you, if he won’t commit, he is a jerk-off.  They just can’t win.  Let’s not forget the job, we may be graduate students living off only $9,000 a year, but we won’t even look at a guy making less than $50,000.  Who do we think we are?
This results in drama. 

Drama with the friends
You think this would end after high school graduation but that is wrong.  It goes on well into adulthood.  Friends judge friends; in high school you made fun of the girl with the ugly shoes now we make fun of the friend who hasn’t dropped her college weight.  It’s grueling and exhausting.
Drama with the family
I am afraid this aspect of life will NEVER end.  If you move out of your house mom insists that you’re wasting your money on rent.  If you stay home you are made her personal slave in order to repay 25 years of debt (as if we had any chose from years 0-18) This is what you call a lose-lose situation. 

No matter how you swing it life is always full of drama.  Work politics, marriage and babies only make matters worse.  So every once in a while try to sit back and evaluate your situation.  Look at the parent, friend or partner beside and realize, “things ain’t so bad.”   

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Baby Fever

Advice #9 The Best Baby is the One You Return to the Parents at the End of the Day.

Yes babies are cute.  They coo and laugh, they snuggle and hug, and they smile and grow.  Babies also cry, spit up, poop, are always hungry and constantly require attention.  As a lady, I know my ultimate purpose in life; I was put on this planet to make a baby.  Okay maybe that is a little too conservative for everyone, but the truth is only our female bodies can do it, so we probably should.  The real question is when?

Timing is Everything
There are a lot of reasons to have a baby while you are in your mid twenties, you are young, your body is healthy and you have a lot of energy.  Having a baby at a young age also leaves plenty of time for more babies!  But there are also plenty of reasons why you should not have a baby in your mid twenties.
  1. Babies are Expensive- Unless you have come across a large trust fund, there is no chance you can afford a baby and all of the costs associated with one at age 25.
  2. Babies Require Space to Grow- If you have a college education, chances are you have loans. If you have loans, chances are you can’t get afford a mortgage.  What? Do you plan to raise a baby in your mom’s basement, or your leased apartment? I don’t think so.
  3. Your Body-  Let’s be serious it took me 15 years to get some boobs I am not about to have them producing milk and sagging only ten years later. 
  4. Your Bucket List- Yes, babies bring a lot of joy to your life but they also make a lot of things impossible.  That trip to Italy you want to take before you die?  Do you really risk your life and go sky diving after you have a child?  Ponder that.
  5. Babysitters A trip to the shore with you girlfriends…You and your man  taking a couples vacation to the mountains…those were the days, once you have a baby, pick up and go trips are over, no more spontaneity.

Final Thoughts
So, please do not misunderstand me.  I think babies are wonderful but there is a time and place for them.  It is only fair to bring a baby up in the best possible situation, so sit back, pop your BC and enjoy life a little longer.  Babies will still be cute when you’re ready for one! 

Friday, May 27, 2011

The About-to-be-Bride

Advice #8:  “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”

The only thing worse than your pathetic single friend (the one who claims she doesn’t need a man but spends every Friday night getting drunk complaining about being alone) is the about to get married friend. Here is the timeline of how this all goes down.

One Year Prior
Once you approach the quarter-life your friends will start dropping like flies.  She will meet a nice guy and before you know it, she is no where to be found.  She will go from crazy party girl to at home chef and wine sipper.  Finally, the guy will pop the ring.
That is when it all starts the timeline we all go through in hopes that our friends will do the same for us someday.

The Beginning
            The engagement party is first.  Of course you are so excited about your friend and her ring and her fiancĂ© but this is one of the first parties you will have to attend.  You will need a dress, a smile and of course a small gift.
            Next comes the wedding shower, similar to a baby shower, but instead of eating tea sandwiches and looking at cute pink bibs, you will sit around with other unmarried friends and watch the bride to-be open boxes of dish towels.  Oh yes, you will need a new dress and a much more expensive gift.
            Then there is the bachelorette party.  This will require another new dress, room reservations, a down payment on a party bus, weeks of planning and some serious binge drinking.  Just when you think the night is all over, it will suddenly require puke clean-up as well.
            It all ends with the wedding.  If you are in the wedding, you are miserable at this point, in a hideous dress counting down the seconds until the cocktail hour.  If you are a guest things are as expected, the food is average, the drinks are okay, the cake looks better than it tastes, you are wearing another new dress, your feet hurt and you just wrote a $100 check to help your friend pay for cocktails in Bora Bora.  Repeat 10 times.  This is a crucial part of the quarter-life.  

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Quarter-Life Cocktail

Advice #7:  Life gets less drunk once you hit 21.

Let’s talk about it.  When you are 18 years old alcohol is the forbidden fruit.  All those years ago, my friends and I would wait weeks for someone parents to go out of town.  As soon as they pulled out of the driveway, we would pull up with any (and  I mean any) type of alcohol we could get our hands on.  Valdimir, the handle of vodka that is priced under $10 a bottle, was typically the drink of choice.  Shot for shot, from age 18-21 we would drink until we were sick and then just sleep it off. 

Age 21+
Then, the worst thing in the world happens.  As you pass through age 21 and the memory of trying new bars every night fades away you realize the alcohol doesn’t go down as easily, you get sick a lot sooner, and the hangovers last much longer…it hits you, you’re old.   
This all happens rather quickly.  The first time may happen at a local pub, when you realize you are tipsy off of only two drinks.  Or it may happen when you are pre-gaming with your other 21 + friends and realize you are all drunk before you leave the house.  This is an unfortunate time.  You slowly start going out less and when you do head back to your favorite spots you’ll begin to notice the 21 year olds looking at you and thinking, “What is that old lady doing here?” it is awful.

Hell on Earth
Finally, the worst part of alcohol and old age, at-work hangovers.  Going to work hung over is not only professionally irresponsible it also makes your day ten times longer and intolerable.  All day you dream about closing your office door, shutting down your computer and sprawling out on the dirty rug, where you assure yourself you will have the best sleep of your life.  While at work you try eating snacks to keep you from throwing up but inevitability you find yourself in the single stall bathroom leaning over the toilet with your boss knocking at the door.   

Friday, May 20, 2011

Keeping the Man

Advice #6 Once you're lucky enough to find it, do everything you can to not mess it up

For 20-something women unless you are missing teeth, 100+ pounds overweight or simply just a lunatic it is NOT difficult to meet a guy in a bar.  Most of us would agree this is because when a man meets you in a bar he does not want to take you to dinner next Friday he wants to take you to bed TONIGHT.  But, my man, the Cop, was different.  I am sure any other people have met this special guy too and this is why I want to share with you my top five ways to keep the guy.

The reason I bring this to your attention is because today’s 20-something (yes I mean us),  talk and talk about how we need to finish school, start working, travel, have a life before marriage but then we meet a great guy and wedding bells starting ringing in our heads.  Well I am going to give you those MUST-DO tips to keep him around until you and him are “ready”:

1. DO NOT ...under any circumstance…GET FAT. 
 Ladies, the truth is until we have babies there is no reason to gain weight while in a relationship.  Actually you should lose weight considering all of the “action” you will be partaking in.  Listen, if he keeps taking you to dinner, as the Cop always does, either vamp up your work outs or suggest an alternative.
2. Do it anytime and anywhere…oh yeah and you should like it
 Listen if you’re not still in the mood after only six months chances are your relationship
 won’t last anyway. 
3. Learn to Cook                                                                                                                              
 If you don’t already know how to cook it is imperative that you learn to make at least three good  meals.  I am not trying to be all 1950’s but seriously, learn how to cook something!
4. Wear make-up at all times                                                                                                    During the first six months- one year you must have at least mascara on at ALL times…it is not that  hard, no excuses.
5. If you have owned a pair of panties for more than a year, trash ‘um!  I know that panties can be an awkward subject for most of us but let’s be honest no one wants to see your pink full butts with the ribbon.  Invest in some cute and sexy sets or you’ll lose him… real quick. 

So I ask the male readers to ponder this list. Do you agree? Or did I miss something?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Falling In Love

Advice #5 Chances are you will find love when you’re not looking.

I have enjoyed my fair share of up and down relationships.  I am not calling myself a relationship guru but I have had some pretty good and devastatingly awful experiences.  This tale begins at a smelly dive bar located in Suburbia, PA.

Team Try’na Hook-up
Team Try’na Hook-up was established in 2007 when my friends and I decided to explore this creative nickname in order to make going out and trying to talk to guys sound fun.  Team Try’na Hook-up is made up of six of my girlfriends.  Each of us obviously enjoys hooking-up (who doesn’t) but by Team Try’na Hook-up we really mean Team Try’na “find a nice guy who is educated, has a stable job, a nice family and treats a girl right” another word for, if you seem interested in me there is NO CHANCE IN HELL I am going to hook up with you on the first night.  (This is just another game played women in our 20’s to get free drinks and your hopes up.)
Anyway…on a typical TTH-U night I headed out in cute jeans, back tank top (with my bra appropriately stuffed with 2 pairs of socks) and cute heels.  I believe this look was showing “I am cute and sexy but you’re probably not getting into my pants tonight” and I was correct. 

The Bar
Just as I finished beer number two and looked toward my cheap-ass girlfriend whose turn it was to buy a round, I saw this guy approaching out of the corner of my eye.  There he was, too tall, too pale, too skinny, shaved head, Timberland boot wearing man walking over with two Millerlite's.  I know it sounds presumptuous but I knew that second beer was for me.   So I accepted the beer, introduced myself, chatted long enough to find out his profession (Cop), I watched his buddies try to flirt with my friends, and then I played every guy’s favorite game…I ignored him. 

Test #1 for the Cop
The ignore him game is test number one.  As a female you must consider how hard he is willing to work to talk to you.  I made it clear that I was not going to hook-up with him but if he played his cards right, he would get my digits.  So I talked to other guys while drinking the beer the he bought me I realized that I had to pee!   In the line for the bathroom, the Cop made his move.  A new bar and a lot of beers later (obviously a real man will invest in my girlfriend as well) I gave the Cop my digits.  I am so glad I did. 

Friday, May 13, 2011

My 1st Ride

The affordable
My 1st Car
Part of being a middle child is that you don’t always get what you want.  When I turned 16, I got a cell phone but I had to pay for my own plan.  When I turned 17, I got my drivers license but I had no car to drive and when I turned 21, I could legally drink but I had no cash.  It’s a sad life.  Thankfully, I am resourceful and have been able to overcome each of these circumstances.  I got a job to pay my cell phone bill, I borrowed my mom's car for four years and I discovered bars across Philadelphia that had penny drink specials.  But at age 24, I couldn’t go another day with out my own set of wheels.

Top 5 Things I wanted in a Car
  1. Cute and girly.
  2. Made some time in last ten years.
  3. Good condition
  4. Somewhat fuel efficient
  5. Under $ 3500 (my savings account)

So really, I was fu*ked.  I searched online, on the used car lots and around the neighborhood.  I learned that unless my savings account doubled in the next few weeks, I was going to be on SEPTA forever.  My mom received a phone call from a friend who knew I was in the market for an automobile; she referred us to her one-legged boyfriend/mechanic “Lucky”.

The Story of “Lucky”
“Lucky” as he referred to himself (even on his name tag) told us to meet him at A to Z Motors in south west Philly.  If you’re not familiar with the territory, young girls from Suburbia, PA, do not go to south west Philly and especially not with men named “Lucky”.  So, I went.
“Lucky” took me into the sketchiest area I have ever seen BUT showed me an adorable, white Ford Focus, 67,000 miles, and only $3,100.   I just HAD TO HAVE IT.  After a test drive, a little bit of paper work, I paid him straight-up cash.  Two weeks later, the transmission was shot…FAIL.