The other night, I found myself at a happy hour at Dos Caminos on Third Avenue. While it’s usually known as a lively Mexican restaurant, on this snowy Saturday afternoon, it became the hub for any and all post-grad degenerates.
We spoke about our job woes and the intensity of our singleness to the drop in self-esteem in the real world and the weather that quite frankly is some sort of cruel, premature April Fools’ joke. The margaritas slowly started circulating through our livers that, for most of us, were sorely out of practice. And like the mature young adults that we are, we unknowingly had foregone dinner, a crucial fortress against the enemy Tequila. Our guards were precariously down, which might explain why we found ourselves at TGIF – no, it was a Saturday, but we found ourselves at the restaurant, of all places in the food mecca that is Manhattan, TGIF. To be fair, it was a business meeting – a brainstorming session of sorts – maybe more of an AA meeting, but you get the idea. Is this guy worth my time? Why can’t I go on dates? Is hinge actually worth it? Do you hate your job? Oh you hate your job too? Wait you love your job? I might be moving to LA or Boston or San Francisco…anywhere but here? Chicken over rice?!
By the end of the night, a whopping 12:30am, there was blood on bathroom walls, beer cans in showers, and a total of eight-ish people completely black out. Bets had been made, one too many games of pong had been played, and I leapt out of a moving cab.
I had been convinced that the days of irresponsibly blacking out were behind us, left behind the walls of our academic institutions. But here I was, yet again wandering the streets of New York by myself, determined to find the REAL Halal Guys.
But I guess this is the reality of it – are grown-ups really grown up? No. They just learn to play the game. They can put on their business casual, which quite frankly looks good on no one, and go to work, act professional, and then keep their rowdiness in check. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the last half decade, it’s that even the oldest and the wisest are nowhere near infallible.
While that does give me hope, I would like to, at some point, figure it out. I have absolutely zero idea what to do with my life. I have maybe twenty bajillion plans laid out in my mind that are plausible. I could move to California because it’s my place, or I could work at a startup because that’s a thing, or I could go into writing, but then again that industry is dying, or I could stay at my job because that’s also a thing, or I could give it all up and go move back in with my family or I could go into tech or eat for the rest of my life until I explode.
And then I could also never date or go on Hinge dates or be healthy and do Meatless Mondays or just eat Artichoke Pizza because YOLO or I could vow to start being pickier about my friends or just continue to love everybody because I can’t help it or become a morning person or become a night person or never sleep because I can sleep when I die. What the FUCK am I supposed to do?
To be honest, I’m in the process of revamping my self-esteem because I think a lot of it disintegrated once I got into the real world. A lot of questions that were answered in college no longer apply to life outside of college, but I suppose that’s the process. Wisdom and experiences are contextual, so we must always be ready to reboot and reconsider the things we know and once knew.
Warm weather could help, but so would some wine… and maybe a hug.