The Delusions of Teenagerdom

I remember when I was 17 and knew it all. I still do, but at 17 I was smaller.

Why is it that teenagers think they have it all figured out? It’s hilarious, if you don’t believe me just observe a group of teenagers for a bit. Not in some creepy way that has the police tapping you on your shoulder – be careful of that, it isn’t pleasant – but you know, just take notice.

One thing you will notice is that they treat anyone in their late 20’s and up as idiots. Like we are completely unaware of what life as a teenager is like. That we were never a teenager and couldn’t possibly get what is going on. And they may be right, because we live in different worlds. We, the “idiots”, live in reality, and they live in some deluded utopia where personal interests are the only thing that matters. It’s kind of like when they are 5 and lack the ability to use empathy. Somewhere along the line between 5 and 12 they learn it, but when they hit their teens all that shit goes out the window. All of a sudden every piece of knowledge that could ever be known gets implanted into their brains. They have no use for anyone but themselves and their fellow species, who have also come into this “knowing” of everything. So, they are right that we are idiots. Idiots to their world. We have left it behind (most of us) and only remember how stupid we were as teenagers. Seriously, when I think about what I thought I knew when I was a teenager, I just smirk and shake my head, which usually weirds out anyone who notices.

Another thing you’ll notice is that they are oblivious to the world around them. It usually doesn’t matter where they are. Whatever they are doing is all that matters. They own the world and no one else exists. Whatever they are talking about needs to be talked about loudly, no matter the subject or surroundings. Again, I’m reminded of a 5 year old. Only I prefer the topics that a 5 year old talks about; superheroes, ducks, crayons, the man that helps mommy in the bedroom when daddy is at work… No one gives a fuck about what a teenager is talking about. Least of all everyone on the bus that isn’t your friend.

If you happen to notice the funniest thing of all, then you have witnessed teenage drama. It’s a caricature of reality. Which might explain why so many teenagers love reality shows. Whenever I have the privilege of listening to some loudly spoken teenage drama where the main problem is that some guy won’t stop talking to other girls, or *gasp* worse, his ex keeps calling him, It takes a lot of mental will to stop myself from clawing my eyes out. Have you ever seen the look on a teenagers face when you tell them that their life hasn’t even started? Pure awesome. A better approach might be to say this: “Listen, that guy who doesn’t know how to treat you right doesn’t really matter. He’s only after one thing. Guys your age are idiots who know nothing about the world. Do yourself a favor and save dating for when you are older. Men are only a bit better, but you’ll be smarter. Do this, or risk being his next ex that won’t stop calling him.” That will never work.

And the guys? Holy fuck, listening to the guys is almost like listening to half retarded bears roar at each other, but in slow motion. Fuck me. “Roooooaaaaarrrrr, ‘girls name’ rrrooooooaaahhhr …hahaha he was hit in the balls rrroooaaaaaaaaaaaaaar.” These are the guys teenage girls have to deal with. But their too stupid to realize that. It’s one of the side effects of having every piece of knowledge that could ever be known implanted into your brain.

I don’t want to come off like teenagers bug me. Don’t get me wrong, most of them do, but I can sympathize. I’ve been there. And like them, I had no idea that I was a complete douche bag that didn’t realize that I owe the world, no one owed me anything, and that what I knew as reality would be nothing but a hilarious memory. You have to laugh at yourself right?

Shopped Into Submission

Going shopping with my wife is a little like a love hate relationship. I love hanging out with my wife away from the boys, but when I’m out shopping for clothes with her I can’t help but miss being with them pretending to be the incredible Hulk and Hulk-smashing everything in sight.

My contribution to helping her decide is so minimal I’m sure she regrets bringing me the moment she asks for my opinion and I reply “I don’t know… yes”. My only real value is that I’m outstanding at guarding her purse and/or drink while she tries clothes on. My stank-eye is superb. No one comes near me and her purse. In reality I’m sure it’s more that no one wants to deal with the guy who looks like he just can’t take living anymore. You know the guy I’m talking about. He’s the one sitting on some weird over-sized ottoman surrounded by bags with his shoulders slumped forward staring at his shoes like they’re talking to him.

I think there is a saving grace though. We men will look for other men suffering in the same situation. We have a non verbal code, we can just read each others body language. Here is one I see a lot, it’s a look we all give, It looks like quiet desperation and I’m going to decode it for you. Here it is, quiet desperation: “How did this happen? It sounded great; she came to me so sweetly and asked me if I wanted to go out. Now all I can think about is whether I would survive the drop from the second floor of the mall.” There is something special in knowing you aren’t alone. Every time I meet eyes with some other sorry bastard there is this moment of silent recognition. It’s only for a split second but it’s read “We can do this, just a few more stores. Solidarity brother.” It can only be a split second too, because if we stare any longer, thoughts that “this guy must want to fight me” start popping into our heads, we’re stupid like that.

Why do they even bring us? Our opinion on fashion is horrible, we look like miserable self-centered children on the verge of a foot stomping, brain popping, melt down. Because they love us I assume. But that’s dumb. This is a prime example of when love clouds your judgment. They must pity us when they see us sitting on the couch still in our underwear watching Saturday morning cartoons. But here’s a little secret. That’s bliss to us. No pants, no thinking, no nothing. Just slap stick humor, a bowl of fruit loops, and the day’s aspirations gone five minutes after we woke up and turned on the T.V. But somehow women think we need to be saved from this bliss by being dragged around the mall kicking and screaming. It’s for our own good!

Have a good no-pants Sunday everyone.

Parenthood: A Snap Shot

My kids are great. Self-centered, ill-mannered, and sticky, but great.

I mean if you saw my two year old after he’s eaten a piece of pizza, you would swear he just dined on a gazelle with his fellow lion cubs.

Neither of my sons have the ability to look at anything through other peoples perspectives. It’s great. I’m in the kitchen making lunch for them, drop something in my toe, and the response is “lunch is taking too long”.

My 5 year old’s manners are getting better. He still feels the need to tell me when he farts, and just the other day he came up to me and showed me something on his finger, it was about the size of a small pebble and off white in color. Apparently I was supposed to get rid of it for him. I said “what is that?”, he replied “I don’t know”. I said “where did it come from?”, he said “my mouth”. So I said “smell it”. He smelled it and told me it smelled like puke. A wet burp, mystery solved. But it is my two year old that is worse. He will routinely drop food from the table and try to eat it like a dog off of the floor. I’m a proud papa!

I’m no saint though. A little while back I decided it was a good idea to tell my son that vampires don’t only bite you when you’re asleep, but they will also attack you when you’re awake…

Let me explain. We were in a restaurant and the topic of vampires came up somehow. My son says “Vampires bite you when you’re asleep, right dad?”. I said “They don’t just bite you when you are asleep, they will bite when you are awake too.” I was oblivious to what I was suggesting until my wife starting laughing so hard she was almost crying. She did manage to blurt out “Real good parenting there dad”.

They are really naive too. I was playing Skylanders with my oldest and he called me a genius for solving a puzzle. Genius, a GENIUS. Finally someone sees my awesomeness.