Sunday, 10 January 2010

Lesson Learned?

Without naming specifics, family members are sometimes crazy. These are people you're supposed to care about, and usually do. But when they, as adults, do silly things, it's totally aggravating.

I was thinking earlier today that adults are really only grown up children. Not a totally unexplored idea, but as I grow up, it's become more clear to me. It's my own little revelation. Usually, most adults want to be comforted when things suck, receive reinforcement and praise when they do good things, and to be liked (even though some may sternly deny this fact, deep down they want to know they're ok and belong somewhere).

So, maybe the crazy comes in when the security net disintegrates, when the reinforcement of teachers, coaches, parents (if you're lucky to have parents who are cognizant), etc. is slowly weened or pulled away and you're like, "Shit, I have to make that decision by myself and no one is going to care what happens either way?" Floating commences, floating which is really free-falling and the combination of your decisions results in landing head first, on your bum, or elf-like on your feet. Yes. Something like that.

Well, I have a family member who is falling to their doom with a blind fold on and the rest of my family is sitting glamorously in the front row, box seats, around the circus ring, spectating and commenting on the form of their descent, much like a fallen trapeze artist. It's frustrating to me that no one is saying anything.

Sitting in my kitchen with my dad describing the financial, familial, physical ignoramus blunder said family member is going through, I can feel myself getting frustrated. I shout in protest, "Why not tell (said-person) how stupid they are! It is clear they are headed for ruin! It would be better than tearing them another one behind their back (no pun intended, but perhaps now that I think about it...)!" My dad responds, "Well how would you like it if someone said what you were doing was stupid?" "Well, I'm not doing something totally ridiculous and potentially damaging to my health and that of my family." "Mmm.."

Then my mom, sitting lazily on the couch by the fire place says, "They're not asking for our advice. They're just telling us what they're doing. They can make their own decisions."

Ahh. With that, I grabbed my sunglasses, and joined the rest of my family in the box seats. Now, patiently, I will watch as my family member falls. Hopefully, when they do, we'll be around to peel them off the ground, or perhaps not. Thus, lesson poignantly learned. Point for mom and dad.

Thursday, 7 January 2010

Too cold to play outside.

It's 6 degrees outside, but that's only a farce. The winds are fiercely blowing and wind chills are biting at -14, which in the long running history of MN, is not actually all that bad. The "countryside" is looking pretty barren, That's how I feel about finding a job. The lack of sunlight and warmth and money are analogous to each other. However, they return in due time, it's just super frustrating when all you want to do is go outside and run around, and you can't because your nose would fall off and your fingers curl into themselves out of shock at the scorn of the cold if you tried.

Mom being is home today. Things are a little bit more high strung when she has days off. There's usually an agenda, and I feel more like an unaccomplished crazy person than ever. Applied to a bunch of menial administrative positions that pay more than TJ's, but suck at your soul a little bit more. The money totally compensates for the soul-crushing tedium though, right?

Any feelings of adrift? That would be how I would most describe my feelings today. Whether on a mountain top or canoeing on an a river or some sort of physical activity which is constantly pushing you back, not out of spite, but just because that is its nature of being. It doesn't laugh at you when you feel discouraged or fall back. It looks at you indifferently and sees if you will continue the attempt. If you don't, it'll still sit there and wait for the next person, and if you do, it'll still be there accompanying you along the way. So, I guess then, the best way to play it is not to fight that mountain, river, ocean. How so very poetic. The only thing I'm going up against right now is time, myself, where I think I want to go and maybe money. Most definitely money, but just because it allows you to have options.

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Who Lives At Home?

The new year is fresh. A new decade. 2010. I like this number because, first, I prefer even numbers to odd, and second, there's a sort of balance that fatty and round 2009 didn't touch and stickly 2011 won't hold. Thirdly, 2010 comes out of the mouth with ease. Twenty. Ten. Boom. Done. No need to explain further.

My decade starts out, comfortably in the paid-for, well-heated, spacious, isolated, clean, car-dependent cocoon of my parents' home in the suburbs of Minneapolis. I must start out that it's a pretty sweet gig, all things considered. My parents and I get a long relatively well, and they don't really demand anything from me like, "When are you moving out?" or "You should work more," or "You stink, take a shower." Things like that. We share beer and wine, and my dad makes dinner most nights. I feel fortunate to be in a warm, caring, supportive environment.

But, uh. I'm 24 years old and I live at home, in the suburbs with my parents. Why would I do this? It's difficult to go back home after living alone, without needing to "check" in with anyone. Granted, there's re-adjusting on both sides. On one hand, you're supposed to be an adult and take care of your own problems, but then on the other, you're still the kid, so make sure to pick up your room. That tug-of-war will never end as long as I'm here, I think.

And I have to mention one of the biggest draw backs to home, there are no one night shinanigans or silly times living at home, not that I'm prone to them entirely, but they aren't even offered on the menu when you're at home, at least when you're at my home. And isn't a lot of being young having silly times and shinanigans? Yeah, I think so too.

So, again, why would I do this? Why would a lot of young and maybe not so many young people do this right now, sacrifice the independence for hanging out with your parents on Saturday nights (maybe that's just me?), discussion about the weather, and just a little bit of a sad feeling because you're not quite a grown-up yet? Because it's smart. Smart financially.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to get a job right now? Not even a career job. Any old job? It's not for the weak at heart. Land of the free indeed, but I mean, Canada's economy is bouncing back more than ours (source: The Daily Show). Thus, for everyone out there living at home thinking Blah! I wish I had enough money and stability to move out, no worries. I say, let's embrace our mass return home. Let's see how dysfunctional, irrational, hilarious, patient and human these people who birthed and/or raised us are. Not too mention, figuring out how to be an adult after coming back home.

This next part I say as much for myself than anyone else, no worries about being at home. If you have parents cool enough to allow you to crash, than pat yourself on the back.