It could happen to you, too. Here are some potential signs:
- You use the phrase "nice young woman" to describe someone in her twenties.
- You find yourself complaining about loud motorcycles A LOT.
- You have approached a group of teenagers talking loudly in front of your house and asked them to please keep it down, and you didn't care if they thought you were "cool" or not.
- You lose a bit of weight and you're annoyed that you have to buy new pants.
- You see someone get carded at the liquor store and realize you can't remember the last time it happened to you.
- You were buying a nice bottle of merlot when it happened.
- Just one bottle.
- You find yourself frequently moved by greeting cards.
- You look for quality manufacturing when you buy clothing because you want it "to wear well."
- You have witnessed three cycles of a fashion trend. You participated in the first iteration. You mocked the second go-around. And you think the third time around is "cute."
- You are no longer plagued by petty-worries-in-the-middle-of-the-night insomnia.
- You find yourself waking up at 6:30 am every morning and thinking how nice it is to get an early start to the day.
- You do this on weekends.
- Even though sometimes your bones hurt first thing in the morning.
- You wish you had more free time for knitting.
- You have found yourself comparison shopping for shoe inserts.
- You use the word "nice" a lot.
- You don't sweat the small stuff.
- You realize it's pretty much all small stuff.
- You really like a nice list.
You realize that, had you given birth during your freshman year of college, that child would now be heading off to college this fall.
The bottle of Merlot - costs more than $10.00.
You have to explain who Keith Richards is to someone who is really excited about the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Then you start to explain about 21 Jump Street but stop in the middle when you realize she was only 4 when it premiered.
You say "kiss my grits" and the person you said it to doesn't understand. You begin to say "You know..Mel's Diner.." and realize they don't know....
A teenager you mentor thinks you're cooler than she thought because you know who Will Smith is...until she figures out you know him from Fresh Prince of Bel Aire. Not that this happened to me or anything...
This post is a funny coincidence since just yesterday, I was blogging about how turning 23 has made me feel old. I thought I was crazy, but now I'm not so sure - I'm 9 for 20 on that list.
My addition to the list:
When you recall the days before the Internet (a library! With books! And a card catalogue! Scandalous!), the high schoolers you tutor look at you like you're a freshly thawed wooly mammoth.
You remember the first person you know who had a cell phone--and it was the size of a shoe box.
Time to get graphic:
You don't care who sees you enter the handicapped stall, or if anyone's in the restroom when you exit.
Even older: You don't bother to hide the noises you make in that stall.
(Hasn't happened to me yet, but I see the progression amongst my coworkers.)
Heh. Rocketgirl, it's funny that you mention feeling suddenly old at 23, because I can remember (through the dim fog of memory) feeling EXACTLY the same way. I remember going to Lollapalooza (everyone shut up) and feeling so conspicuously, self-consciously OLD compared to all the teenyboppers and college kids. In retrospect, that seems kind of goofy but I was honestly pretty self-conscious and sort of embarrassed at the time, like all these "kids" were going to see right through me and my attempt to be "young" and "cool." Lordy.
Your mention of the internet reminded me of one more item to add to the list:
You remember when people just used cell phones for making phone calls. None of this text messaging or taking pictures or playing videogames. We could only make phone calls, and we LIKED it that way, dagnabbit.
You join the Young Nanna Society
You engage check out chicks in conversation as they're scanning your groceries. Hell, you chat to anyone you meet.
You look forward to a nana nap in the afternoon when the kids are resting.
It starts after you turn 18, I swear. Or it did for me.
See, young male celebrities begin to grow into themselves at age 17.
So there are some hot 17 year olds out there.
And once I turned 18, I got these waves of guilt that it's somehow pedophilic for me to be slightly goo-goo every time Peter Pevensie opens his mouth to speak, even if I spent the entirity of the high school years trying to promote Colin Firth as being a hottie, which must be just as bad, if not worse as it would make me the victim, in a legal sense.
I've got way too much guilt and no right to say I feel old. But damned if I don't suddenly feel older. I randomly burst into a comfortable silence with my mother tonight to ask if it was normal that I no longer respect most of the people I grew up idolizing because now I kind of think they're full of shit?
Apparently it is and they are.
If I had any more self-loathing, I'd be Roman Catholic.
You look at celebreties you used to have teh hots for and think how old they're looking...
you stop bothering to cover the gray in your hair because it's just too much trouble...
you realize that if you were still working at the first job you had after college YOU COULD RETIRE THIS YEAR...
How about 20 signs that you may be young?? :)
Last night the twentysomething neighbours were having a loud birthday party out in the back yard next door, and after I had brushed my teeth and washed my face and gotten into bed at...10:45 PM, I started getting pre-mad at the thought that they might still be at it when I wanted to go to sleep, and resolved that if they were, I was going to call the cops on them.
Em, I hear you. I feel really weird watching young people (egads, I just said "young people" unironically!) kiss in teen movies. Not weird enough to stop WATCHING teen movies, mind you, but still.
Heheh, Tara, your story reminded me of a night a couple of weeks ago when we could hear loud music that was being played out on the street from inside our house. I started getting annoyed in anticipation of how mad I'd be if the music were still playing when I wanted to go to bed. So finally I went outside to check out where the music was coming from. I saw that there were a bunch of teenaged girls sitting in a VW bug, chattering and blaring pop music, so I started to walk toward them to remind them that this is a residential area and to suggest they move along. As soon as they saw me coming, they clammed up and took off. Heh.
being annoyed at teenagers playing loud music = thinking you might be old
frightening teenagers into leaving without even having to say anything = KNOWING you are definitely old
You realize, acknowledge, and accept in one fell swoop that you cannot drink caffeine after 7pm or you WILL be up all night ...and you do not want to be up all night.
Yes, this is a true story.
Six years ago, when I was a mere 30 years old, I explained to a young (age 20 or so) friend of mine who wanted to crank up music in my car that his comment "if the music's too loud, you're too old" did not bother me because the music IS too loud and I therefore AM too old and do not care.
You refer to anyone assembled in a group apparently having/faking fun in a loudish manner as "yahoos". As already described by Tara, you get pre-mad at them for potentially disrupting your sleep schedule. When they do disrupt your sleep, you lie awake and worry what damage the yahoos will do to your car if they find out it was you who called the landlord on them.
Hell, I'm eighteen and I constantly tell people my own age to shut up because I'm going to bed at 11:15 and QUIET HOURS START AT 11, PEOPLE.
You mention that you learned to type on a typewritter (even though there were computers) in high school and your niece replies "I THINK I heard of a typewritter. It's one of those black things, right?"
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