You guys remember that song by Jay-Z, right? “I used to let my pants sag, not givin’ a f*ck/ Baby boy, now I’m all grown up.”
If you’ve never heard it, basically Jay-Z put out a song the year he turned 30 reminding everyone that, despite the fact that death was right around the corner, he was still in fact big pimpin’ spending cheese. I remember being in my early-twenties, hearing it and thinking “Nice try Jay-Z, but it’s Lil’ Zane’s time now.” It was a decent song, but he sounded bitter. Sort of like a guy who was fighting to justify aging to himself. In hindsight, I may have been a little judgmental. It’s a weird age that teens can’t imagine and 20-something’s dread, but maybe it’s actually kind of cool.
On a completely unrelated note, I turned 30 last week.
Here’s the thing about being 30; people who are older than you want you to shut the f*ck up about “being old,” and people who are younger than you legitimately think you’re kind of old. Even in my late twenties, my teenage brother and sister always assured me that I still had a spot at the kids table, but this year was different. This year, they asked me how many gray hairs I had and why I don’t use Snapchat more. 17, and because it sucks. I knew this day would come and assumed it came with a stigma, but this was almost instantaneous. Dirty 30. It’s almost been more of a punchline than anything else, hell I was planning on naming my debut album Almost 30 if it wasn’t postponed due to unforeseen circumstances & lack of Zoloft. If you’re reading this and you know anything about me, you’re probably guessing that I’m bummed out about turning 30 but here’s the thing, I don’t give a sh*t.
I’m actually kind of glad. Weird I know, but I swear I’m cool with it. If you weren’t expecting that I don’t blame you, I wasn’t either. But I’ve thought about it over many sleepless nights and bottles of Safeway Prosecco and as weird as it sounds, I guess I’m kind of happy. Maybe it’s the aforementioned antidepressants, or the hours I’ve spent talking to Dane, a man whose content with life for no reason at all, but it’s true.
If I had to explain it, I guess I’d say that life has always sort of sucked in my teens and early twenties and it seems to get better the older I get. I’m not fishing for sympathy, it didn’t suck in a 13 Reasons Why kinda way, but there were a ton of lessons and growing that took place that wasn’t fun then, but necessary and useful in molding me into the guy I am today. For instance, go back and listen to the first rendition of the Rodkast. All the listeners hated me and I couldn’t understand why, but it’s glaringly obvious to me now. I was absolutely horrible. Not just the way I spoke, but how I contributed, the personality I tried to portray, I was terrified of just being myself. I’d deny embarrassing assumptions about myself, like watching rap battles, because I was worried what people would think and that took precedence over everything else. I never went back and listened to episodes then because I didn’t like hearing myself lie and I never improved because of it. I hated doing the show, but that brutal year was a vital part of the process and something that I had to learn from to get to the point today where I actually enjoy doing the show. Sort of enjoy doing the show. It’s tolerable. You know what I mean.
It’s like an aspiring stand-up comedian doing open mics, working through stage fright and bombing at Jammin’ Java on St. Patrick’s Day. It sucks at the beginning and probably will for a while but eventually, because of all that practice and trial and error, it could blossom into something bigger.
It also helps that basically every hot girl I knew in high school is having a terrible time as an adult. I feel like everyone peaks at a certain age and if you ruled the hallways of Oakton High School then, you’re probably addicted to Oxycodone and in a loveless marriage.
Long blog post short, a combination of life lessons learned, accepting who I am, and the pressure of getting old forcing me to pursue goals makes these white nose hairs a little easier to accept. I also think I accidentally doubled up on my Wellbutrin today.