Hello dear readers, Jeff here. I’m taking the column solo this month so if you were looking for a heaping hunk of Aaron, well, you’ll have to settle for his radio show. You see, this month I turn 30-years-old and I want to talk about it a little bit with all of you. That is if you don’t mind. I didn’t think you would but I thought it polite to at least ask.
"Pretty soon you’ll be an old bastard too"
– "Bastard" by Ben Folds
Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to feel? Turning 30 is basically becoming an enemy of the young and the hip. By reaching that milestone you simply can’t be trusted anymore and, as Ben Folds put it, you become an old bastard. At least that’s what everyone tells me.
You like that little song quote thing I did there? I stole that from some other dudes column on ESPN.com. I dig the idea though it took me awhile to come up with some good quotes. Song lyrics just aren’t what they used to be. Back in the day, as it was with most of our lives, songs were about three things; sex with chicks, sex with dudes and getting wasted in the company of chicks and dudes – while having sex with them. Now songs are all faux-philosophical, painfully lovey-dovey or just plain retarded. For the later, just listen to anything recorded by Nickleback. But as far as the other two song types, who wants to hear a song by some sappy, overly emotional, dude in a sweater pinning over a woman he sat next to in Modern Literature or some 14-year-old girl singing sexual metaphors that she couldn’t possibly understand? At least I hope she doesn’t get them because I’m 30 and I don’t get most of them. Well, the answer to the fist part of that question is me, but that’s beside the point.
See, even without Aaron, I can still digress.
"Everyone is trying to bum me out"
– "Flower" by Eels
Over the last month I’ve been approached by about 1,370 people (roughly) saying the same thing – "So you’re turning 30? Wow. Guess now you’ll have to grow up." That statement is just about the shittiest thing I’ve ever heard. People actually think that once you hit the arbitrary age of 30, you have to pass on certain adventures, stop doing childish (their word, not mine) things and settle down into a life that resembles a Norman Rockwell painting. No more toys. No more rap music. You’ll have to put baggy pants in a box for Goodwill. And certainly no more writing satirical new stories because those are for people 29 and under.
What a sad view of life that must be and besides, Norman Rockwell was a shitty artist but again, that’s not the point. I say fuck all that. Fuck it all in its shitty ass (Poetic eh? Language like that must be some of that "childish" stuff people have been warning me about).
I wonder if people actually do that. I wonder if, on the day they turned 30, people go through their homes, put everything they own in the trash, head out to Kohl’s, buy 10 pairs of khaki pants and newest Brooks & Dunn album. I wonder if there are people who turn 30 and change the way they live, the way they are just because someone told them they were 30 now and therefore old. See what I mean? That’s fucked up.
"Don’t want to find yourself
Alone and thirty five
Spending half of what you make on your car
And hating the drive"
– "A Lull in Traffic" by The Gloria Record
There are more important things in life than fitting in and doing things simply because it’s how your peers do them. Sacrificing your identity in order to fit in will make you a really unhappy person. I can point to about 15 direct examples of this but for the sake of those relationships, I won’t name names here. Unless of course you really want to know their names. If you do, email me and I’ll send you the names
along with pictures and full biographies of each including the names and locations of all know relatives.
You can put any kind of spin you want on a life but if it’s not yours it isn’t going to work. If you take a Pinto and give it a brand new paint job, spinning hubcaps and a gold plated grill, it’s still a Pinto. So why invest all the time and money into something you aren’t in the hopes that it will someday make you happy when you could take all that same time and money and do things you truly want to do?
"But now he lives in side
Someone he does not recognize
When he catches his reflection on accident"
– "Brothers on a Hotel Bed" by Death Cab for Cutie
I will never look at my self in the mirror and think "I wish I would have
" I will always know who I am and turning 30 isn’t going to change anything. I know there are a lot of people out there holding out hope that I turn out to be more like everyone else or like something that resembles them, but it will never happen. So either accept that as truth or cut your losses and move on to some other project.
I can’t make many promises in this life but there are some that I feel comfortable enough to list here. They are as follows: I will never listen to country music – because it sucks. I will never vote Republican – because they suck. I will always wear baggy "gangster pants" – because they are a million times more comfortable than any other pants I have ever owned. I will never have a cell phone – because they suck and they are making American’s even ruder. I will always collect toys and put together Legos – because even the most creative mind needs a muse or a catalyst. I will always listen to rap and depressing music – because a lot of it is very good and really moving. I will always try to be a little bit different from everyone else – because there are already enough people out there that act, dress and think the same. I will always read comicbooks – because TV is doing no one any good. I will never believe in god or a higher power – because I don’t need to.
And last but never least
I will always write The Scoop and this column – because it means more to me than any of you will ever know.
Now, please don’t mistake me. There is nothing wrong with any of the things I just listed. In fact many of the people I love most in this silly world disagree with every stance I just made. I’m totally cool with that. Just as much as I want everyone to be cool with me as I am and always will be.