So it’s Saturday night, and after running ten miles this evening, I went food shopping, cooked dinner, and in between reading, writing blog posts, and listening to Crosby, Stills, & Nash, I felt old.
You see, while many people my age are out partying, I’m studying, reading and running. Isn’t that what 40 year olds do?
Jill put this in an interesting way:
Parties, specifically college parties, revolve around getting as drunk as possible, so you don’t remember anything, and think you had a good time.
That seems accurate. It’s funny that people call alcohol “liquid courage.” Sure, having a beer and chatting with friends is and should be socially acceptable, but I think it ludicrous that people can maintain the illusion that alcohol makes them more interesting. To be honest, I think it just makes them talk about non-interesting things, and have non-meaningful conversations, that are perceived to be profound. It’s almost like it provides a way towards a lower form of socialization. I stopped by a house party last night after trying some (bad as usual) Buenos Aires Mexican food, and found myself engaging conversations about nothing, with people whose perception of when to start or stop talking about a subject was distorted. Go figure. To be honest, I don’t dislike parties. I like socializing with good people. I just think that people should take advantage of a lot more social outlets than they do.
I’d much rather have a legitimate conversation with someone over dinner, or at a potluck than talk about next to nothing with someone I’ve just met (or someone I know who happens to be inebriated).
My point is that my generation’s socialization norms are flawed. We dismiss getting to know people via common interest, and think that friendships are made through alcohol. This of course doesn’t apply to everyone, but it’s unfortunately ever so common. I just wish people would spend time playing Frisbee, or having lunch during the day with other good people, as opposed to doing school work all day Saturday in order to go out that night.
Is this coming from some straight-edge athlete who thinks he has all of the answers? I hope not. But to be honest, I view this point (that I’ve pretty much exhausted) as a sign of immaturity. This is partially what’s making me feel old (and odd). I feel older than my peers sometimes, which is a first. I’ve always been the goofy kid that didn’t care what other people thought of me, but now people are coming to me with questions about life. They’re surprised at the fact that I cook, and at my independence. Why is this? It feels strange, to be honest.
The great thing is that I have amazing friends at home that I learn from every day, and I meet people all the time who have great things to say. It’s just that when I talk to people who don’t have anything to say (due to alcohol or what have you), it’s not fun. The worst is when people becomes less interesting with alcohol…especially friends.
When I look in the mirror, I see someone with long hair and an attempt at a distance-runner mustache. I know it’s me staring back, but it’s a different me. It love who I am, but growing so much in so little time, and realizing it at that, can be strange. I fill my time with as much as I can for a reason. The new changes me for the better, and helps me figure out who I am. I’ve said that so many times. But what if…what if…my glass is full for the time being? What if I need to step back, stop looking for things to reflect about, and just…be me? What if I’m living it all too fast, and those guys and girls who are going out at night are doing it right? I’m sure it’s not polarized like that. I know that there’s a happy medium somewhere. One of the people I look up to most in this world, Troy Woods, told me a few months ago that I’m was doing it right…that I am doing it right. For the time being, I’ll stick with that.