A slow transition to adulthood | TahoeDailyTribune.com

A slow transition to adulthood

Tahoe Daily Tribune Staff Reports

Well, that wasn’t so bad. My first year in adulthood went off without a hitch.

I’m referring to a University of Chicago study taken last year of 1,400 Americans who believed people enter adulthood at 26.

I turn 27 today. It sounds like a boring age and I know most people reading this will remark to themselves I’m still a young buck. Yet I’m still concerned that I, the self-described eternal child, have lost my youth and will soon wake up with a bad back.

The story, which was written by an Associated Press reporter, went on to say that people think you’re grown up when you receive a college diploma, have a steady job and begin raising a family.

Since I don’t think the family of mice in my place counts, I have met two of the three main factors.

Still, I question if I became an adult during the past year, or if my maturity level was even raised. My sense of humor is around a sixth-grade level. I like cartoons and roller coasters. When people fart, I laugh. My idea of a good weekend is watching morning episodes of Beverly Hills 90210 and when I’m interviewing school children I act like Tom Hanks in “Big.”

Still, those who know me well are unconvinced at my attempts to wallow in my own fountain of youth.

“You work an 8 (a.m.) to 6 (p.m.) job, you have no social life and you pay your own rent,” my sister, Katie, said. “Sounds pretty boring to me. Yeah, you’re an adult.”

OK, I’ll go with her belief. I am more into politics and am even concerned with my retirement. If the type of music I listen to reflected my age, I’d fall somewhere between 32 and 74.

“I think you act like an adult, until you start drinking,” said my good friend from high school, Matt DeBenedetti. “Then you start acting like a sailor fresh off a boat that’s been out at sea for three months.”

Point taken. My drink of choice is whiskey on the rocks. I smoke cigars. I listen to Sinatra. I’m worried about balding. I’m even concerned about my weight but haven’t thought of joining the low-carb diet fad. At least not yet.

Even my girlfriend thinks I act like a grown-up. She used words like “punctual,” “conscientious about doing a good job” and being “well groomed.”

The good thing is my ease into adulthood is scientifically accepted.

“There’s a much more gradual transition (to adulthood) than was traditionally there,” said Tom W. Smith, a researcher at the University of Chicago’s National Opinion Research Center, quoted in the story.

So, hello to you, 27. I hope we get along fine. Just allow me to eat Lucky Charms, keep my hair and laugh at fart jokes.

– E-mail William Ferchland at wferchland@tahoedailytribune.com.

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