Sunday, January 16, 2005

"So you're just, like, prematurely OLD?"

I feel old. In the months since graduation (there have only been six), I’ve fallen back on the phrase “I’m too old for this” more than any normal 23-year-old should. Of course, one of the times that phrase was employed involved certain people running around hotels in their underwear babbling drunkenly about “Vodka Claus,” so I’m validated at least once.

I saw “In Good Company” this weekend, and it kind of freakishly hit home. The Topher Grace character, who’s married to a job he knows nothing about and who carries on his most meaningful conversations with a goldfish, is accused of being “prematurely old” because he graduated, landed a job, got rich/married/divorced in a matter of months, and woke up one morning realizing he envied his Volvo-driving underling.*

The getting rich/married/divorced thing isn’t so applicable, but still…

What the heck is wrong with me that I’d rather tool around in a well-appointed SUV contemplating 401Ks and networking strategies and the latest episode of Frontline (OK, Real World/Road Rules Battle of the Sexes) than act like the average bar-going, money-squandering, entry-level 23-year-old? Stability from stability is nothing to write home about. (But then again, why write home about anything? I go there every weekend to do laundry; why not just tell them about it.)

At least I got a new phone number so I can join up with the HP Singles.** Maybe social interaction will loosen me up a little. Or maybe all the HP Singles are career-driven, stability-chasing business wunderkinds who joined as an outlet from their intense careers and accelerated need to get a proverbial life. Ummm…

*The Volvo, of course, symbolizes the Dennis Quaid character’s sense of suburban stability. His car’s a wagon, not an SUV, but there’s still an eerie parallelism with my own Volvo-centric observations, I think.

** I really hope my out-of-state number is the reason they didn’t call me for my “screening.” Maybe they found out that I lied about my zip code (I spend a lot of time in that zip code; I just don’t technically live in it!) or that I’m wanted by the HP police for a major badass speeding offense.