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Notes on Adulthood

I’ve been living in this big wonderful city for almost one calendar year. I have one year’s worth of Chicago things under my belt. I’m excited about all of those things, but recently I couldn’t figure out what wasn’t fitting. I adore my job, I adore my friends here, I adore my small apartment, nothing was glaringly annoying.

Until I realized there wasn’t a break in my year. There wasn’t a Christmas break or a spring break or a summer vacation to mark the turnover of a new year. That’s not to say I didn’t go on vacation this summer or last Christmas, I did. But there wasn’t something that was built into my year by another institution. Upon this realization, I had this conversation with Chelsie:

Me: “I realized that up until this point in my life, there has always been some built in reevaluation of my status, whether that was a move or a semester ending. And now any change that I want to make or any self-evaluation has to come completely from within. And I think that sort of scares me.”

CB: “Yes!! I think that’s why I got so excited about this conference. I thought about that they other day when I was wondering why I felt so dissatisfied with my job, because there’s NO NEXT STEP UNLESS I MAKE IT. That is frightening.”

Me: “I’m so glad you understand this. I think this is what it means to be a grown up. I think this was our first step in understanding that at 23 years old we have to be semi-adults…”

CB: “That and bills. Bills, bills, bills.”

And while bills are the true mark of growing up, realizing that you have to self-govern from here on out is slightly intimidating. It’s not by any means a bad thing, but it’s not exactly something I’ve had to do before. I’m not entirely sure what it entails. Do I need to start reading the Times? Do I need to get a tailor? What are the things I must do now? Get my eyes checked more frequently? I’ve been rocking 20/20 vision forever so I don’t know the new rules.

I’m pretty sure I don’t have to do any of those things. I think I just have to be more aware of what the next year holds and actually make a list of life improvement things to do and stick to it. Cleaning out my closets and taking vitamins more regularly seems like a good place to start. Doing my dishes consistently and not waiting till every pair of underwear I own is in the dirty clothes to do laundry seems like the way to move in the right direction.

But if anyone knows how I can sign up for a free personal assistant that will regulate my life, feed me vitamins and tell me when to do my laundry, please let me know.

Sincerely,

Inventing semesters for grown ups.

PS: I say grown ups very, very loosely.

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I don’t like your dog.

And that doesn’t make me a bad person. I have to explain myself on countless, literally countless, occasions as to why I don’t like pets and I am finally just putting it all out there. Judge me if you must, I judge you for letting your dog lick your face.

First of all, I realize that animals can do amazing things. I realize that they can sense seizures before they happen. Guide the blind through bustling cities. Skateboard. Bring you the paper. Do tricks. And apparently love you unconditionally or something.

But here’s my issue. I don’t want to be friends with a dog. I want to be friends with a human. I want to be friends with someone  who didn’t fall for Pavlov’s dirty tricks and in turn messed with his test results like I did when volunteering at the OU Psychology department.

I don’t want to be friends with someone that can’t tell me what they did that day. I want to be friends with someone that challenges me and makes me laugh. And someone that I don’t have to feed twice a day and then pick their poop up.

On top of the fact that I don’t understand forming an emotional bond with something that can’t return it, I don’t want to smell like dog. I loathe the way your hands smell after you touch a dog. It’s just gross. They lick their butts for goodness sake…….and then they lick you. No where in society is this an acceptable situation, aside from dog and owner relationships. And damn it, I’m not buying into it.

I’m sorry I don’t like your dog. I’m sure you think I have no heart. Let’s call it even.

Sincerely,

Animal free since ’93

(1993 was chosen only because it rhymes…)

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Inhabitants of the Gym

I go to a gym. I am not telling you this so I can drop subtle hints about the amount of pounds I lift or the reps that I do. Pounds and reps are not in my vocabulary. My gym experience is filled with things like the elliptical machine, the treadmill, the TV in the women’s locker room that always seems to be playing Basketball Wives, Zumba class, the spa. I’m not a professional gym goer.

Everyone always talks about girls that wear makeup to the gym. Everyone hates those girls. I didn’t really think they existed until this past week. They are a very very real thing. I go to the gym after work. And in the morning I use eyeshadow primer that makes my makeup miraculously stay on my eyelids for the entire day. So I walk into the gym at 6:30ish with whatever is still clinging to my face after a day of work and I feel weird about that amount of makeup. Apparently, not everyone shares my feelings. Let me walk you through a recent gym experience.

I walk into Zumba looking like a college student, because I don’t own t-shirts that don’t say Kappa on them. I haven’t figured out how to look like I graduated college. Anyway, into Zumba I go. I awkwardly stand. I don’t know how to stand naturally in a room of mirrors. I cross my arms and cross my right leg in front of my left. I pretend to stretch (harder than it sounds, by the way). I put my water and towel at the side of the room. I bring a towel, but I don’t really sweat enough to find it necessary, but I bring along to fit in.

So there I am, prepped to Zumba, and in walks the most curious of creatures. This seemingly normal girl has on bright fire engine red lipstick. Like recently applied, getting ready to go to an event of some grandeur, red lipstick. I was COMPLETELY distracted for the next hour. I could not figure out the lipstick’s purpose and in turn I could not figure out those pivot turns. I am not one to judge what makes you feel comfortable at the gym, I bring a security blanket towel, but full red lipstick? Really? Clearly I’m not a professional gym-er, but that seems like it should be against the rules. I watched lipstick girl for the majority of class. Her coordination was a curious as her lipstick. She seemed nice enough, but seriously, that lipstick. I’m still talking about it a week later.

Do you remember the episode of Friends with Phoebe’s artwork? The really creepy ones with the mannequins coming out of them? That’s sort of what that girl reminded me of. Is that mean? I’m sorry, but it’s the truth my friends.

I also discovered that Zumba is an excuse for women to dance really slutty in a very non-slutty environment. There is a lot of shaking, shimmying and and hip gyration. It’s encouraged in fact. As far as I can tell, Zumba is the only venue that slutty shaking and dancing is acceptable outside of a high school prom or a strip club. If you tried to Zumba on the streets someone would stick dollars in your yoga pants.

Inside the Locker Room.

Granted, I haven’t been into many men’s locker rooms so I don’t know what goes on in there. I assume a lot of sports chatter? Someone verify this please. But I have been in the women’s locker room and that s#%$ is cray. Let’s discuss.

Being naked is allowed in locker rooms. It’s a place to change clothes, I get it. Prancing around the place naked is a totally different story. There are women at my gym that are just naked walkers. I don’t know what their naked destination is. Walking to and from the shower doesn’t require you to be naked outside of the shower. And newsflash, I don’t want to see that. Ever. There’s a towel around half of you, just put it around all of you. This is not a nude beach or a nudist colony. Keep your nakedness to yourself.

I try to go to the gym and keep as low a profile as humanly possible, which is difficult when your arms flail while trying to pretend to be a Latin dancer in Zumba class, but I am baffled when my gym fundamentals are thwarted; naked and lipstick wearing is NOT low profile. (Is that complex-compound sentence? Can someone verify this? Is there a 4th grader reading this that is learning to diagram sentences or someone recently studying for the ACT?)

Men at the Gym

While a decent portion of my time is spent in the women’s locker room, watching Basketball Wives or on a girly machine (the elliptical), I do encounter dudes at the gym and dudes at the gym are the worst dudes of all. Here is a list.

1. You can’t support yourself on stair climber with your arms. That’s cheating.
2. I don’t care that you just purchased a killer protein shake.
3. I also don’t care that you are wearing your Chicago Marathon t-shirt.
4. Your calf tattoo is saying a lot about your personality. Although, probably not the things you want it to be saying.
5. I’ve seen you walking around more than I’ve seen you working out. Are you doing laps?
6. Two towels huh? You must be working out extra hard today.
7. Medicine balls are loud. Please stop slamming it on the ground.
8. Unless you are competing in the professional tennis circuit, please stop grunting.
9. You are at the gym. STOP holding hands with that girl. It’s germy enough in this place as it is.
10. Hey lady in my Zumba class! You aren’t Madonna and this isn’t the Super Bowl. Cool it. (Not man related, but worthy of the list nonetheless).

She was a Madonnabe. She had really poor space awareness. I hated her.

Sincerely,

Just trying to get my flex on

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