Our parents are always talking about how tough it is getting old. They’re always complaining about their aching joints and how two glasses of wine send them “over the edge.”
For years, we laughed and scoffed, thinking we’d never be like them. Then 22 hit... and we realized it’s time to stop laughing.
What is it about leaving college that not only makes us feel old, but weak? Is it a mental thing? Or is it purely physical?
Did the exuberance of our drunk classmates energize us, breathe life into our bodies and give us supernatural powers that included the ability to chug half a handle on a Monday night and still make it to our 10 am sociology class? What is it about entering the “real world” that made us so goddamn lame?
I don’t have an answer to that. I wish I did, but I don’t. All I know is that we’ve all gone out, maybe not this week, or last week, but sometime, yet again, on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday and all but nearly died.
But you kept going. After you managed to see another day, you forgot the pain and went out again next week. Maybe you tried your hand at Thursday night, instead of Tuesday.
Maybe you only stayed out until 12 instead of 2. Either way, after nearly getting fired and throwing up in the company plant, you eventually came to a sad conclusion: Going out on a weeknight after 22 is about as smart as trying to jump off a cliff.
But why? Curse the gods and kill the virgins! Why does it have to be like this! Where did it all go? Why did we have to lose that? Take my teen metabolism, my unprocessed hair, my Adderall script (OK, maybe not that), but don’t take away my ability to rage!
For all of you kids still in college, all we can say is live it up. Drink and party and enjoy it because this time will end.
The second you step off that campus and into the numbing corporate landscape of the 9 to 5, you can say goodbye to weeknight partying because out here, you may as well be dead.
Because you can’t just not go to work
Missing an attendance mark isn’t going to drop you down half a letter grade, it’s going to get you fired. You can’t lie in bed asking your roommate if it’s worth it because, well, it’s not.
Because your hangover will last three days
It’s not just a few bad hours or a bad day. It’s a rough three days. It messes you up for the entire week. You will begin to feel sick, your muscles will ache and you will begin to hear yourself saying things like, "I'm getting too old for this sh*t.”
Because there's no nap time
You can't just skip that meeting in the middle of the day because you'd rather go home and watch "The Real World" with your roommates and smoke a bowl.
Because the walk of shame is a $40 Uber
In the “real world,” you pay for your mistakes. It’s not just walking across campus in that slutty Rue La La dress, it’s spending $50 to get you across town and away from the bed you just pissed in.
That gaping hole in your savings account is just another reminder that you really need to get your sh*t together.
Because showing up to work the next day in the same clothes isn’t cool
There will be no high-fives or conversing about your wild night, just your boss and HR making mental notes.
Because you actually have to make money now
Missing work and missing class are two completely different things. Because, in college, missing class meant being lazy. In reality, missing work means being unemployed. Only now you don’t have mom and dad to help you to pick up the slack.
Because you can’t pretend to do work while you sleep
There’s no giant lecture hall, no unassuming professor and definitely no one who is going to cover for you. The world is a cruel, harsh place and those tricks that got you by will probably only get you an ass-whooping.
Because there's no "hair of the dog"
There's no skipping class because you need to "get your medicine." Going to a bar to curb your hangover with more booze is something that has a different name outside of college.
Because smelling like alcohol isn't funny
Remember how you used to laugh about your roommate who always smelled like vodka? Well, no one's laughing out here. The second you breathe on someone with any hint of alcohol before 8 pm, you're going to be sent somewhere that's not so funny.
Because your parents are even more disappointed
If you thought getting arrested in college was bad... in the real world, it's disturbing. Your parents won't be able to justify it with the excuse that "you're experimenting." No, now you're just a criminal.