13 Reasons Why Not: why the show fails to represent everything that is tries to

reasons-why1I began watching 13 Reasons Why because of the hype- I thought it was going to be a good depiction of what high school is like at its worst, and how it could cause a teenager to want to end their own life. In 8th grade, I was bullied, so the concept resonated with me. I am also in the field of psychology, and I wanted to see how everything was depicted because everyone is RAVING about this show. This post has spoilers, heads up.

Bottom line: I was disappointed. Quite frankly, disappointed beyond belief.

This show really does one good thing, and that is the depiction of Justin and Jessica’s relationship. Justin comes from an abusive, drug-using household and does not know very well how to stand up for himself, which is translated into his friendships – he allows his friend to send out a picture of Hannah to the whole school without saying anything, and ultimately he allows his girlfriend to be raped by the same friend, because he does not know how to respond to authority. Jessica (the victim of said rape) responds to the rape by beginning to drink before bed, then after school, then in school and all day. She begins to hang out with her rapist more frequently and one-on-one in a flirty fashion, in an effort to get her boyfriend to admit what happened. She does not cope with it in a healthy way. She does, however, cope with it in a way that makes sense. Other than this dynamic, the show is a flop. So if you want to watch it to see how different types of abuse are handled and how they interlace in a romantic relationship, go for it. If you want to watch it for any other reason, you’re wasting your time. And here is why:

  1. The setting: The show is supposed to be set in high school, partly in order to show how parents are not taking a front-row seat of their kids’ lives until it is too late. Even if we set aside the fact that these teenagers look like 25 year olds, with toned muscles and are covered in tattoos at the ages of 16-18, their mentality is not that of teenagers. They are too insightful for their age. Teenagers are stupid, they are not fully developed. That is why we stopped saying that babies are tiny adults…they aren’t, and neither are teens. They are impulse-driven, they do not understand the consequences of their actions, and they are not remorseful to the level that these characters are. The characters think too much about what is going to happen to them as a result of their actions in the show. The show would have been better set in a college, when some of these things would developmentally make more sense.
  2. The Diagnosis: Nobody was clinically diagnosed with a disorder in this show, which is totally fine. However, the idea of the show is supposed to be that Hannah is bullied, which causes her to decide to end her life. This is not really presented well, because a lot of what happens to her is not bullying. Hannah takes the events in her life, records them on 13 tapes, and makes the tapes a ploy to get her classmates in trouble, and to guilt people for her decision. She manipulates people into believing that she was always a victim. She overreacts in certain situations and she lies in the tapes. Hannah is not depressed; she is not suicidal from what is presented in the show. Other students call her dramatic, and say that she “is drama”. She also does not respond to the bullying in a way that appears to be consistent with what the message of the show is. She doesn’t cower away from the “bullies”, she stands up for herself, she actually has friends and people who like her, and the things that she says, like feeling “alone” or “invisible” are not depicted in the show very well. She is more than likely someone who can be diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. Now, this is not a reason that makes the show bad and having a personality disorder is not “bad”. It also, on its own, does not discredit the show. It is, however, a huge deal. Creating a show on the premise that the viewer is supposed to better understand suicide, and having the person who is committing the suicide be someone with a personality disorder is a huge mistake. People who have Borderline, or characteristics of it, are more likely than the general population to take things more personally, feel things more intensely, and either self-harm or attempt suicide. That fact alone ruins the premise of the show, because it would be based on someone who views the world in a more emotionally-driven, rather than rational way, and this is not representative of the general population. So you have in turn taken a diagnosis, not told your audience about it, had that person with said diagnosis kill themselves and have not in the slightest bit educated your viewers about what just happened.
  3. The Lying: Personality disorders are tough. They are challenging to have, they are challenging to deal with, and some of the characteristics of them are sometimes unfavorable. Such as Hannah lying on the tapes. When she lied the first time in the tapes, her credibility is over. Once someone catches you in a lie, no matter how big or small, you cannot be trusted anymore. So, how do we know that everything Hannah said is actually true? It is one person’s word against another’s, and one of them is dead. Which leads me to my next point.
  4. The Manipulation: Hannah is dead, so she has more leeway. It sounds weird, and it’s not really that weird. Everyone is on edge in the show, because they are afraid they are the ones that “killed Hannah”. Hannah lies in the tapes, and she is more likely to be believed because she is dead and the other characters, who did things “wrong”, are just trying to cover their asses. So, essentially, Hannah is manipulating the school even after she is gone. To believe her, to see how much of a victim she was.
  5. The Guilt: The fact that this was never addressed in the show killed me a little inside, no pun intended. It infuriated me that throughout the entire show, people are allowed to say “you killed Hannah”, “did I kill Hannah” and “who really killed Hannah”, and nobody corrected them. She told Clay that she wanted him to leave, then yelled at him to leave and then in the tapes asked him why he didn’t stay with her. She basically wanted him to feel guilty for her decision to end her life because she communicated the opposite of what she wanted. That poor kid was losing his mind throughout the entire series, listened to a tape that he did not even need to be on because he reacted to what she said, because she wanted people to feel guilty because of her choice. I will clear the air right now: Hannah killed Hannah. Feeling guilty for doing something shitty is one thing. Feeling guilty for something that someone else chose to do is another thing, and it is absolutely fucked up that the show perpetuates this concept of guilt for another person’s choice to end their life. Unless someone held a gun to Hannah’s head and told her to pull the trigger or they will do it, nobody, NOBODY should hold guilt in their hearts and minds for someone else’s choice. The show is set in today’s time. Mental health is more openly talked about now than it ever was. She had avenues. Her parents seemed level headed. There was help and she chose to end her life. And that was her choice.

Now let’s talk about the actual “bullying” that was happening in the show:

  1. In the first few tapes, Hannah is kind of held a shitty hand. She goes on a date, and a picture of her flashing the camera accidentally gets sent around the school, people call her a slut, and “easy” and it sucks. I’ll give you that, it sucks. I will also say, that there was never teasing, or name calling. There was just an “air” of this idea that Hannah is a slut. Mean Girls did an amazing representation of what bullying was in high school, and this show, not so much. Again, it’s closer to how it is in college. People think you’re easy, and then they just really don’t care anymore. The situation was bad, and at the same time I didn’t really feel like Hannah was bullied over it.
  2. The List: Again, not really bullying. This is something that really did sound like high school. Some little asshole makes a list of the “best” and “worst” features. And Hannah gets “best ass”. If the show is about bullying, why didn’t she get “biggest slut”. That would match more up with these rumors that are supposedly going around the school. Hannah says that this list fractured the only friendship that she had, even though it seemed to me like she had a lot of friends.
  3. Marcus’ tape: Marcus takes Hannah on a date and assumes that she’s going to have sex with him because, as we’ve already discussed, everyone thinks that she’s a slut. He gropes her inappropriately, and she gets upset and hurt. Fair. Not bullying though. That’s sexual harassment.
  4. The Compliment Bag: The guy took compliments out of her bag. I mean, come on. That made an entire tape! It would be more believable if some girls took the compliments out, and then were snickering in the corner when she went to look in the bag and saw nothing. That shit will fuck with your head. Instead, she hurts a guy’s feelings and embarrasses him in front of everyone when he asked her out, and takes no responsibility for that, and then says that he’s part of the reason that she killed herself.
  5. The rapes: Hannah sees her friend get raped. Says that she couldn’t stop it, which I guess makes sense, I don’t know, I’ve never really known a person who watched another person get raped, that’s a pretty specific event, I don’t really have a basis for how to react to that. I’m sure it’s awful, though. Why does that make her tapes, thought? It didn’t happen to her! At this point, it’s like she had things she had to get off her chest, so she just put it on the tapes and spun it in a way to make it match up with her decision.
    She does also get raped, by the same person. Traumatic, yes. Bullying, no. Felony, yes. Actually, to put rape into a category of “bullying” is so insulting and minimizing of what rape actually of, that I cannot believe that people are not more upset over this. I actually would be curious to know the statistic of women who get raped and complete/attempt suicide. However, again, if the show had been set in any time before 2017, I’d empathize that people would care less. So again, she had avenues, she had her parents, and she chose to tell nobody. That is her choice, she doesn’t have to vocalize that it happened to her, and she could have. Blame him for the rape, the man is a fucking rapist. Not the suicide.

Ok, I’m done with the bullying aspect of it.

  1. The Suicide: Another thing that was not discussed, or addressed. Hannah basically kills herself as a way to get back at the people that hurt her. Someone called it “revenge suicide”. The only problem with this, is that the only person that’s really hurt, is Hannah. Because she is dead. The concept seems to be to kill herself as a punishment to the people who hurt her. The show glorifies suicide, as something that can, or maybe should be done, in order to show people that they are hurtful, or to teach them a lesson.
  2. The tapes: The whole idea behind the show is strange. Creating a set of tapes, in order to essentially frame people for your death… if she had killed another person with that much thought and effort, that would be first degree murder and you’d go to jail forever. She basically committed first degree suicide, and put the blame on a bunch of other students.
  3. The Guidance Counselor: The guidance counselor is the last tape. Hannah tries to tell him that she got raped, and he tells her if he does not have a name, he cannot do anything. And he also tells her that he cannot promise that the rapist will go to jail. Those are both facts. He did not do anything wrong. That is how reporting works. You cannot just guess who committed a crime and hope that you are right because someone else refused to give you a name, and you certainly should not be promising anything, especially to a client, when you do not know, 100% for a fact, that it will play out that way. I’m sure Hannah would have been pretty ticked off if he promised that the guy would go to jail, and then the rapist’s loaded parents made it not go that way. Once you make a report, the situation is really out of your hands. I will say that he did not really handle some aspects of his meeting with Hannah as gracefully as could have been done, and I will say that generally the adults in the show acted like they were born yesterday, and had never experienced anything in their lives.

Hannah says at the end “some of you cared, none of you cared enough”. It seemed like she was having a tough time. And nobody can save you except for yourself. No matter what. Expecting someone to save your life by loving you is not how the world works and it may help you feel better for a while, and if you’re empty, after some time, you will feel empty again. She did not want to do it for herself and she wanted and expected others to do it. Basically, her life is a test of who loves her enough and who does not, and guess what? Nobody failed. We are not responsible for anyone else’s happiness other than our own. We can work hard to not be mean or cruel, or insensitive to others. We can work on being kind and not bullying. And we are the only ones that can work on building up our core and finding our own strength and not allowing every little thing to ruin our day or make us feel bad. We are all humans, we make mistakes and we cannot never hurt another person. It will happen, it probably already has happened, and no matter how hard you try, you will hurt someone again. And we shouldn’t have to live in fear that if we say something wrong, another person will blame us for their death. That is why you work on you. Find help to build your esteem, to build your confidence, to not need another person to “care enough” for you so that you do not have to. That is not the message that this show sends. This show sends a message that everybody needed to take responsibility for themselves, except for Hannah. She was exempt. And she is the only person in the entire show that took absolutely no responsibility for a single thing that she did. That is so wrong, and kids are watching this shit, thinking that it is okay, and if they feel the same way, why wouldn’t they do the same thing. Kids are the audience, and we are telling them that they do not need to be responsible for their own happiness, they can just kill themselves instead and blame others for everything. That is horrifying. This show is a horrifying example of how to deal with any problem, and any mental illness

If you need help, someone to talk to or are feeling like you want to hurt yourself, visit https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ to get help right away. There are options.


“Sadness” is not “Depression”

I’ve been noticing a new “trend” if you will that is really starting to bother me (what else is new?). I am currently a student studying psychology. Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand that school is hard and with working full or part time, it makes it even harder, concepts can be difficult to understand and blah blah blah…. BUT, I have noticed that people are seriously exaggerating their “nervousness” for a test, or for a paper, or life in general. It is normal to be nervous before a test, it is normal to not always feel prepared, but classifying “I’m nervous because I’m not sure I studied enough” as “I have serious anxiety” is…like…what?

AnxietyThis is a really stupid way to get attention. Anxiety is not “cute”, depression is not “cute”, having something malfunctioning with the way your mind processes this world is not “cute”. It is debilitating. It is sad and scary and serious. Let’s get something straight: You are nervous about a test. Actual test anxiety means you literally cannot think because you are about to take a test. It’s like tunnel vision, but at the end of that tunnel are no answers to the problems in front of you. People who have actual anxiety have panic attacks. Sometimes for no reason. Sometimes every hour. Sometimes they just can’t leave their house because of it. Social anxiety means you start to cry at the thought of having to approach someone to ask for help finding something in a supermarket. You would rather not buy groceries at all than have to speak to a stranger because just doing that is too much. Anxiety means you break into a full-body sweat at the smallest sign of discomfort, like when a car is too close, when someone says “Let’s talk for a minute”. Anxious people basically need 8 bags on call 24/7. Life is not easy for people with anxiety. I know people who are actually anxious. I am actually anxious. My anxiety isn’t even that bad, but it is definitely not cute nor is it something to brag about. Having your palms and feet sweating 99% of the time, whether you are currently anxious or not, is what anxiety is. Driving with puddles in your shoes, basically, is what anxiety is and trust me, that shit is annoying, it’s gross and it most certainly is not “cute”. STOP IT!

I cannot believe, that in a class full of master’s psychology students, I listen to so many of them “diagnosing” themselves with something because they think it’s cool to have a diagnosis. Like being “normal” is boring. No, bitch, you’re lucky! Anxiety and being stressed or really busy, do not correlate. They just don’t! And all this is coming from a very specific group of people, people who should know better than to throw around words that have actual, very serious meaning behind them. People who are studying the symptoms that go along with these actual diagnoses…these are your future therapists, America.

Life Sucks

On Saturday morning, as I was driving to work, someone side swiped my car right in front of the restaurant I work at. Even though the driver of the car admitted fault, my insurance company was doing very little in terms of being on my side and told me that it was in fact, my fault. My car is not drivable and this is the first time in my adult life that I don’t have reliable transportation and have to depend on someone else… so that sucks. I spent Saturday night alone with a bottle of wine watching Netflix, and occasionally sobbing a little. But, on Sunday morning, I came into work and I was fine, to which my manager commented that he thought I was taking this whole situation very well… besides the part where I was binge drinking wine until I fell asleep. BUT, I work really close to where I live, the accident was right in front of my workplace so I had people there for me, my manager witnessed the accident and can speak on my behalf, and my parents have tremendously helped me with insurance and they live close by and were available… So I have a lot of reasons to be taking the situation well, even though it is still a shitty situation.

However, I’ve been thinking about my manager’s statement, and besides wondering how someone else would have reacted, I realized that my life (and life in general) essentially boils down to a series of unfortunate events and I have just learned that if I stress everything for a long period of time, all I will be doing is stressing through my entire life. I don’t think my life is bad, I love my life, but no part of it is where I expected to be at this point in it, and I make stupid choices and do stupid things about 80% of the time. From my experience, if you learn to joke about the shitty things that happen, and use humor as a way to help you overcome your obstacles, you will be much happier, and nobody will ever be able to make you feel bad about your life, whether or not it was in your control. Humor is the best medicine, and it helps with not taking serious things so seriously. We only have this life, and you really do have to find a way to make the best of it. If you worry about the future, you aren’t enjoying your present moment here. This all sounds like clichéd bullshit, but it really is true. You can’t control the future anyways, and from my past experience, the things you work the most on and plan to a T, fall apart.

Life isn’t fair and a lot of people feel like it’s working against them most of the time, and I would tend to agree, but if we are admitting that life sucks, why do we get so upset when it continues to suck? Now I’m not telling everyone to make fun of themselves and their unfortunate situations just because it works for me,(but it really works really well!) but we should work on finding a coping mechanism for times that suck, and really learning to appreciate the times that don’t suck… because they are rare and you just have to embrace that shit.

Boom! Knowledge bomb!

Blackout Central: population: Me

So in honor of this past holiday weekend, during which I lost my memory for a few hours due to excessive alcohol intake, I am going to grace you guys with a story about the first time ever in my life that i a friend (ahem) blacked out… So, here we go:
Once upon a time, there was a girl who had just started at a university- she lived in a dorm with many fun and adventurous people and one night, they went to a party. Now, college students are broke by default so regularly this girl and her friends drank disgusting ass liquor (not really important to the story, just wanted you guys to know that the struggle was real) On this particular night, this girl and her three friends didn’t bring any alcohol to said party and as it turns out, there wasn’t much there to begin with…which was a problem. Now, can’t really tell you the details (since this is a story about a friend) but people had alcohol that they weren’t really willing to share but eventually they did. There was also a dog there who was very calm and peaceful and there may have been conversation regarding getting the dog drunk, however we didn’t, which was ultimately for the best…

Anywhosers this girl decided she will vocalize how drunk she was throughout the night, on a scale from 1 to 10, 1 being sober, 10 being drunk. She took a couple of shots… “2/10″… Couple more shots… “4/10″… Couple more shots… Started dancing…someone was yelling at someone else… Played with the doggy… Took a few more shots (as I said earlier there wasn’t a lot of liquor so I’m not sure where these shots were coming from)… “6/10” and then

BAM! She woke up in her bed at like noon the next day!
This is probably a good time to tell you guys that this friend… It was me!!! (Dramatic music playing) I know, none of you were expecting that but it’s true…

So anyways I get up, I’m all like what the hell is going on, my roommate goes ‘oh good you’re alive’ my friend who lived next door at the time comes in and goes ‘oh good you’re alive’ and I’m like ‘what the fuck are you guys talking about when was I not alive?’
So, they start recapping the night:

“You were dancing at one point, then we looked over and you were napping on the couch”

“You were making out with some guy then you stopped and went ‘I’m a fucking 10!'”

“You got sick in the front yard”

“The guys took you home and you wiped throw up on someone’s sleeve”

I don’t remember that part but I do remember insisting that I swipe my card to get the elevator, like that part is very vivid, I was like “I GOT IT, ILL GET THE ELEVATOR!”

Ok so at this point I’m so stupid that this is hilarious to me, the only thing I’m really thinking about at this point is how excited I am that I completed my mission and got to 10 on my scale of drunkness.

So then later on I found out that I was walked back to my room, walked in, went straight to the bathroom, took off my pants (just my pants)and laid down in the bathtub… Still wearing shoes and all… The bathtub was the place to go apparently… and then I just slept in there. My roommate and the two other girls went to some other party, came back and I assume put me in my bed and I woke up, totally not ready to go to work in an hour. But I did, I went to work, I came back home, laughed about being an idiot and went on with my life #NoShameInMyGame

Lunch Break Rant

ImageI’m going to take a second to rant about this picture to the left, not necessarily because I disagree with it, but more so because this is judging people who work at fast food places (or really anywhere that has minimum wage) solely by their English skills. I encounter CPAs, attorneys and other educated professionals on a daily basis that have horrible English skills and make close to 100K/year. If you think that’s the skill set that determines how much money you get in your pocket, there would be a very small percentage of people who would make over minimum wage. Don’t get the two confused- manual labor and English skills are two separate things and should be treated as such- you can definitely have one without the other. If you have a problem with the fact that this whole sentence makes zero sense, take it up with the school system – from public schools to higher education. Nobody emphasizes to anybody the importance of knowing how to write, how to speak, where punctuation goes, that its not “me and my friends went to the mall” and also not “here’s some pictures of my friends and I”, to only begin with the most common mistakes. My professors who have PhDs would make so many errors while speaking and writing, and nobody argues that they should be making less than $15/hour. I would like to challenge whoever posted this to take a spelling and grammar test and see how much they actually know (and apparently how much money they should be making), because I, personally, only know a few people who know how to speak well and I know a large majority of people who have jobs that pay over minimum wage. This argument is shallow and frankly, really annoys me. If you want other people to use their brains when they make your burger, you use your brain to make a better argument against minimum wage increases. 

New Mexico Adventures

I went on an adventure! My friend and I planned a random trip to
Albuquerque just to see what it looks like.  Here is what happened:

Day 1: It was great because we both woke up at 7:30 the first morning due to the time change so we had all the time we needed to have fun! We did all the sightseeing the first day- saw the petroglyphs, biked by the Rio Grande ditch river, and convinced ourselves that we were going to fall to our deaths when we went up and then back down Sandia Peak in a little 20140506-195239.jpgtram…sweaty palms and breathing techniques both happened. On the way back down there was some alcohol in the system so our terror of dying was more pronounced and we entertained the rest of the people on the tram… which is nice I guess, if my anxiety entertains someone else, it’s cool with me, as long as someone’s laughing while I cry.. I guess I laughed a little too but it was one of those nervous laughs like “hahaha there’s literally nothing that can save us if we start to fall, haha and falling for ten seconds is a really really long time…haha”. Also holding on the poles in the tram wouldn’t do any good, either, but it’s a security thing, ok!? Jeez, stop judging me. Anyways, I am glad to say everyone lived to tell the tale. Sooooooooo ON TO THE NEXT DAY! The next morning we -oh wait! I forgot the part about getting dinner at this place that resembled Tilted Kilt (where all the girls wear short kilts and have big boobs) except these girls’ skirts were made for either dolls or 8 year old girls because the cheeks were showing! It was kind of awkward because they all also had Russian (or something similar) accents and the atmosphere was sketchy and I was pretty convinced we were going to get sold in to sex trafficking. Have you seen Taken!? It was basically almost the same thing… so second near death experience of the day, survived! (Also while 20140506-195333.jpgdriving to dinner, I went to drive through a yellow light which very quickly changed to a red light, and I successfully stopped my vehicle in the middle of an intersection that was empty of cars except for, of course, an officer of the law. Sooooo I just kept driving through the red light and the cop turned and followed us, I was driving slow because I was prettttty sure we were going to get pulled over, we both stopped at the next red light, he didn’t even look over to see who in the holy hell just did that asinine maneuver, he turned left, we went straight…and the moral of that story is, when in New Mexico, you can literally do whatever the fuck you want if you are behind the wheel of a car)  So, then after all those completely unplanned adventures, we didn’t go out and I managed to buy a $4 bottle of wine that was closed with a cork. Question of the day, did I have a corkscrew!? (I’ll give you a hint: no) But, don’t worry, this story turns around as I managed, with the help of a friend who googled and texted me instructions on corkless wine opening techniques, to (drumroll) open the bottle! And the crowd goes wild!!! (the crowd consisting of my friend laying in bed next to me who had suffered a headache for the past 5 hours and was very very excited that she finally got a hold of some Excedrin…so both of our dreams were coming true). The wine tasted like piss water, but that’s beside the point, I accomplished a goal, nobody died that first day and I was proud of both of us.

Sooooo now…ON TO THE NEXT DAY!

Day 2: We woke up hangover and headache-free the next day and the plan was this: to drink with some20140506-195251.jpg friends starting at around noon. But we woke up at 8:30 so we decided to go to Santa Fe in the morning; we would have  for an hour and spent all our money buying everything for everyone. (It is a beautiful city and everyone should go see it given the opportunity) Then we came back, met up with friends (who drove four hours to meet us, El Paso is boring, you guys… or so I hear) and drank all of Albuquerque drier than it already is. Literally, I’m not sure how much beer I actually had but I know that a) it was a lot and b) it was stronger than regular beer and c) I regretfully paid for all of the beer I drank which was kind of disappointing and therefore I didn’t look at my bank statement until the next pay day.

Other than pure excitement of getting to drink in another state, we also saw a double rainbow!!! (Pictured below, it’s hard to see the second one but its there dammit!) Had we been responsible adults who thought that maybe we wouldn’t be going back to our room that night or would be drunk if we did go there, (or just thought anything really) we would have packed at some point before our 7am flight the next morning…Like before we went to go drink…maybe… (I’m sure you can guess the rest of the story from this sentence alone… we didn’t pack by the way in case you didn’t get that 20140506-195300.jpgpart). It was a fun time, with lots of consumption of beer and a little bit of water, lots of money spent and lots of not ending up back in our hotel room. But, two points of which I am proud of:

1) I dropped a pin so that we could find our car. I dropped this pin after drinking a lot so, it didn’t exactly get dropped anywhere around where our car was… but, I was thinking ahead to a certain degree.

2) Before falling asleep, I did set my alarm for 4:30 so that we would wake up on time.

Day 3: Day three was a hilarious disaster. The alarm was set for 4:30 if you will recall (from number 2 above) but we didn’t actually leave the hotel and sit our asses down in the cab until close to 5:30. A lot of laying back down and ‘taking 10’ happened. Also, no thanks to my pin dropping abilities, (although it’s the thought that counts right?) we managed to find our car and mosey back to our own hotel room. By this point it’s like 5:45 and our flight time isn’t changing… it’s still 7:00am. So in my head I’m running around this room like a crazy person trying to gather all my shit together, and I’m pretty sure in reality I was just barely moving from the tired/hungover combination. But I definitely had the adrenaline going so maybe it was a somewhat speedy situation. I’m just aimlessly throwing everything in sight into this tiny little suitcase, and of course, having all sorts of trouble fitting it in there. I bought this little handmade vase for my parents, so as I’m sitting on my suitcase trying to close it, and my friend is yelling at me to hurry up because it’s past 6:00am now, the only thing I’m hoping for is to not find it shattered when we get back to Baltimore. (It was in tact in Baltimore, btw) So, suitcase if finally somehow closed, and we’re off! We get out the door, into the car, driving to the rental car drop off, and when we get there this lady starts lecturing us about how next time we need to fill the tank up before we bring it back (she clearly doesn’t know our story and unfortunately we didn’t have time to fill her in). She was kind enough to not add on the total amount for the gas, only about a third, so I will give her props for that. Now it’s 6:30. I’m running through the airport (this time I actually am running, not like in the hotel room) and I feel everything moving around in my stomach like something bad was gonna happen any second, but… it didn’t. I assume for no other reason than the fact that it was 6:30am on a Sunday, we didn’t miss our flight. We even had time to sit at the gate for about 4 minutes. So, we’re getting on the plane now. At this point, the whole plane is pretty much boarded and so I get a middle seat…between guy number 1 who is reading some bible magazine while simultaneously reading bible quotes from his phone….and guy number 2 who is doing work on his laptop and also understands plane etiquette like to leave me alone because I look like I died. So bible guy keeps asking me all these stupid questions…

Why were you in New Mexico?
What was your favorite part? (I can tell you my least favorite part is now)
I have a personal question, did you septum piercing hurt?

Ok, that’s not personal, and seriously, my head is in my hand, I’m trying to sleep, it’s 7am! Please, please please leave me alone. Eventually, he does, probably because I put my tray table down and fell asleep. I’m not sure if that’s also against plane etiquette but it was either that or I was laying my head on guy number 2’s shoulder while he was making spreadsheets, so I think I’m ok.

When we get off the flight my friend asked how my flight was, so I tell her pretty much whatever I just said up there, and she says, and this is pretty much verbatum:

“Oh you fell asleep? That’s good. I couldn’t close my eyes cause it made me nauseous. So I spent the whole flight staring at a spot in the air and concentrating on not throwing up”

Which definitely beats my flight story and she wins the gold!
All in all, I think we would both agree that trip was a success!

Living in the “Real World”

Sometimes I’ll see posts about people going out on weekdays and then going to work the next day and I just get jealous. How come when I try to do that I go to work and feel like shit for the next three weeks? Sometimes I’ll just have a glass of wine and I’ll feel hunogver at work the next day. Belive it or not, a few times I was hunogver and I didn’t even drink the night before (I think that’s just what my office does to me). I started thinking about this cause everyone’s talking about Cinco de Mayo and if they’re doing anything and honestly, that didn’t even cross my mind… to go out on a Monday? And it’s not a special occasion like someone’s birthday? Are you crazy!? Maybe Thursday, cause then I just have to tough out three hours at work then I can go home and take a nap…like an adult! Does thinking like this mean I’m old? Is it that I took advantage of my liver and drank too much in my youth that now that I have to be responsible, my body has given up on trying to even deal with the shit I put it through? That seems pretty legit to me… Then I started thinking about other ways in which I feel old, and, even though everyone always talks about growing up and “being an adult” as something scary and a hated part of life, I actually think there’s a lot of good things too.
For example, from my personal experience, here is a compilation of good things about growing up (I’m talkin early 20s growing up):
1. Your body now knows how to wake up early and you don’t have to or want to sleep until noon on days off. You actually want to have a productive day.
2. You start thinking about what goes into your body. You want to eat healthier because maybe eating that taco bell makes your body feel like shit for a reason- you shouldn’t do it! And you embrace it! Gimmie that tofu salad!
3. Other adults start actually taking you seriously. People know how to have conversations with you instead of asking you stupid questions about some stupid bullshit you don’t want to talk about and then pretend like they’re interested; or they just don’t talk to you at all
4. You can have real, deep conversations with your parents! This is probably my favorite part- instead of talking about stupid high school shit, or having your parents listen to you and then ending the conversation, you can have an intelligent, two-way conversation about so many things. This is your time to actually be friends with your parents because you’re old enough and smart enough to make your stupid decisions all on your own. And even though they can criticize the decisions you make, you don’t have to hide little things like who you made out with last night and how many tequila shots you had in one sitting.
5. Your younger friends kind of start looking up to you. This is an amazing feeling. Even if they’re only a few years younger, you go through so many experiences in your early twenties, and people actually start to care about things you’ve done. People take your advice seriously, and you feel pretty damn smart.
6. You start to be actually proud of yourself. You went to work and you completed a project. It feels great! You had your first meeting, you got your first actual paying client, you got to wear professional clothes, you went on a company trip! People give you responsibility and you can handle it! (for the most part) And then they pay you!!
7. Remember when you were in high school and you “didn’t care what anyone thought?” Now, you actually don’t care what anyone thinks. You might be borderline psycho sometimes, you embarrass yourself, you trip, you fall, you cry in public, people might say whatever about you, and none of those things actually matter to you. Mostly because you’re too tired to put in the effort to care.
8. Buying things has become a game of tetris – in kind of a fun way. You have to match up your expenses and your paychecks so you can afford everything. I know this is hell for some people, but I have a weird enjoyment of budgeting because, again, I am given responsibility and am able to handle it! I also like calculating when I’m gonna pay my car off
9. You can go to bed early and nobody thinks you’re weird! Yes, it’s 10:30 and I’m hitting the sack I got a rough week ahead of me! (Just kidding, I just really love sleeping)
10. You can still do immature stuff like laugh at someone when they fall, and hang out with your friends without having to be all responsible (and build forts in your living room, maybe), you can still make mistakes, by accident or on purpose, and there is time to fix them. It’s not too late to be a kid, to play and to get hurt, but there’s something nice about being a little more grown up then you were last year.

At first it’s a weird feeling, but once you let “Adultness” happen, you’re like “hmm, I can get used to this”… except you can’t get used to being hungover at work every day. Face it, kid, your body does not bounce back like it used to, and it probably never will. You think it’s a coincidence every Sunday is a “lazy Sunday”…no, it’s cause you need a whole day to recover from four hours of drinking. That part of growing up sucks… but the rest of the stuff is pretty damn cool.