Monday, July 27, 2009

4. Real People Save Up For Houses, Not Spring Break

In college, I never saved for anything unless it involved a vacation. I mean, why? Money was for spending, so I was going out! Again!

Here I am at my real job, making a real salary, and I'm mostly spending but I am saving a little bit. And I'm thinking where me and my fellow recently-graduated friends can go on our next trip: Cancun? Miami? VEGAS! The possibilities are endless.

Oh wait. Then I had a reality check at work today. *Real* people in the *real* world don't save up for trips to Vegas or Cancun. They save up for down payments on houses and condos.

Wait, what? A house? You mean, with a mortgage? But doesn't that mean you have to stay In my world, the only people buying houses were parents! Since when do 26-year-olds buy houses?

This concept is beyond me. What if I want to move next year? or next month? Or next week?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

3. In the Real World, "Summer Vacation" Has Been Replaced by "Wedding Season"

Ah, summer. I spent the past 20 summers of my life enjoying the outdoors, the beach, nights out with my friends, no school, no responsibility, and the occasional drinking till 3 am with my best friends. It was great.

This post isn't meant to lament the fact that I no longer have 3 months off in the summer. I was expecting that part, so I'm okay with it. What I didn't expect was that everyone and their fucking mom is getting married in the summer. Everywhere you turn, there is another wedding. My sister's wedding, my best friend's wedding, my best friend's second cousin's mother-in-law's second wedding, my co-worker's vow renewal ceremony. I mean really: summer is wedding season.

This probably seems like common knowledge to the average 30-year-old. Well, it was news to me. In the real world, it seems everyone is getting married all the time and everyone else is all excited about it. Especially in the summer, no one will shut up about all the weddings they're going to all the time. And there is an increasingly high number of Facebook profile pictures that involved girls in wedding dresses or bridesmaids dresses.

No one ever told me the real world was so wedding-obsessed.

2. In the Real World, The Only Appropriate Reaction to Pregnancy is JOY

A year ago, I was in college. If a friend announced she were pregnant, the initial reaction of my friends and I would be: "Oh shit." Panic!

Closely followed by a stream of "Where is planned parenthood?" "Is it too late for the morning-after pill?" and "were you drunk?"

In my office the other day, one of my co-workers announced hsi wife was pregnant, with a girl. To which everyone else responded with shrieks and coos of joy. Because that, of course, is what *real* people do when someone announces they are with child. Normal people in the real world think being with child is the greatest thing ever. And I, somehow have to stop reacting to pregnancy as the end of the world or a drunken mistake and instead treat it as the greatest miracle of life.

Um, what?

1. In Your Office, No One Gives A Shit About You

They don't. Think your college professor didn't care about you? Your co-workers care even less. They don't care about your weekend, your well-being, or your personal life. Some of them won't even care enough to say "how are you" when you see them in the morning. Unlike your classmates in college, your officemates in the real world don't want to get to know you! They want to finish their work and get the fuck out of the office as soon as possible.

You are just a number to them.

Welcome to corporate America, kid.

Why We Are Here

Why are we here? Because the real world is hard. College is supposed to be that gateway to the real world, 4 years that prepare you for "real" life while still allowing you to mooch off your parents.

But let's face it: college, while it can teach you a lot about Proust, comparative political theory, Arabic, and physics, can't teach you about the real world.

So then, we graduate college. We (if we're lucky) get jobs. In my case, I graduated this past May, got a job offer, and moved clear across the country to start a new life on the East Coast. A new city, a new apartment, a new job, new friends, a whole new life.

Actually, for the most part all of that is pretty great. And I am having a blast as a single, independent 21-year-old just out of college in a great new city. But I keep finding there are things no one told me that I have to learn the hard way. Things about the "real world" that I never saw coming.

So I decided to do what anyone does in 2009: BLOG THAT SHIT.

I hope some of you will be able to relate, or at least find my observations amusing.