"No Mistakes in '08" has converted into "Everything's Fine in '09." This means, for the year, I'll be trying to say yes to as many things as possible. (And I thought about this before I heard about the movie "Yes Man")
Over the last few years, when someone has asked me to go skiing, or go see this show, or meet up for dinner, I've said "no." Often, after spending the evening/day on my ass at home doing nothing (but writing on this website), I regret not accepting the invitation. This year, that changes. Here is a list of some of the things I've done over the first 24 days of the year that I wouldn't have done last.
First, I'm going to Egypt. I was pretty frustrated when the opportunity to take up to 16 days off in December (missing 4 real days of work) came and went... w/o me leaving NYC. I wanted to get away. On January 5th I bumped into a friend who I'd met only a few times previously, and who'd had the same issues. She'd booked a trip to Egypt, on a tour, and was planning to go alone. Now she's got me to hang out with. . . and while we're trying to get others to come. . . this is likely going to be the most random "Yes" moment of the first few months of the year.
Second, I went to visit my grandmother. While I see her often at family events, and talk to her weekly on the phone, I rarely actually go to her house. I don't think I've been there in years, till last Monday.
As many of you know, I have very picky eating habits. It's not that I don't like many things, but if there's something I like better, I'll get it over and over instead of mixing it up. That means chicken or beef over fish every time since 1980. Granted, I didn't order any of these things, but at least I'm trying them!
I ate a blueberry bagel.
I drank a Jack and Coke (always liked, never ordered).
I ate pomegranate seeds.
I ate a piece of lettuce w/Caesar dressing.
I ate some other sort of leaf at a Korean barbeque place.
I ate fish; blue fish, tilapia, sword fish.
I ate shrimp.
I went to Philly this weekend, to meet up with a friend from DC who met me half way. I never would have done this. We had a party to go to, so that helped, but I went Friday night, crashed at a hotel in center city, and drove back Saturday morning.
Lastly, I went to the Dermatologist. I'd never been, everyone seems to be going lately... so I decided to go. He checks me out, and sees a few birthmarks. Most I recognize, and they've been there for a long time, so he's fine with them. The last one, on my back...well...I have no idea how long I've had that, or if its grown, I mean, it's on my back! Yada Yada Yada, I have 2 stitches in my back. Do you know how hard it is to put a band aid on the middle of your back? Maybe I should go to the derm in the morning every day and have them dress it, considering it's their fault.
I now say yes to everything... well... almost everything.
If only I'd enacted this policy sooner, I'd be sitting at a spa in Mexico! Though I'd be stuck w/5 women from my family (and prob play golf alone every day). Thus, the men in my family are in NY, alone, w/o their wives. . .
One of my BIL's sends an email "Do you want to do poker this week?" - Sure, I'll host!
My dad says "Do you want to go to AC or Vegas for the super bowl?" - Sure, let’s try to figure it out!
One of my friends says, "Hey, I'm going to FL next weekend w/my sister, do you want to get a flight and crash" - Hell's yea!
And about 20 of my friends have said "Lets get dinner, lets get drinks, lets meet up after work." - Sure...sure... sure.
Let's just say that I've prob had a drink 6 of the last 7 nights for the last 3 weeks. Not that there's anything wrong with that. When I mention this to whomever I'm with, I always tell the same story. I'm not sure If I've told you guys this, but it's worth reiterating if I have. . .
When I was in college my mom would call me on a Sunday morning (afternoon more likely) and ask what I did that weekend. I'd give her the standard "piss your mom off" response by saying, "I had about 10 beers and passed out, don't remember much." She'd inevitably raise the tone in her voice and say "Why do you have to have 10, why can't you just have 1!" A year after I graduated college... I'm sitting in my living room... watching TV... drinking a beer when my mom calls, "What are you doing?" - "I'm sitting in my living room, watching TV, having a beer" - "It's Tuesday night, why do you have to have a beer?!" It's a funny story about how people are never satisfied... or maybe I’m perfect but never good enough... maybe I'm not sure the point besides that I tell the story all the time... and it's funny when I tell it.
I've been saying "yes" to so many things, I've had conversations which deconstructed different ways to say "yes." Apparently, if you are asked to do something, which you want to do, you can be both "up" for it and "down" for it. However, if you're up for it, there is a chance you may not participate in said activity, whereas, if you're down for it, you are definitely going to show up. I actually had this conversation "Are you up for it?" - "Yes." - "So then… are you down for it?" - "Yes."
The negative to “Everything’s Fine in ‘09” is that I’m doing a lot of rolling solo. My friend invites me to his show at the bitter end, I’m going solo. From there, it’s to another friend’s bday party down town. Solo again. I don’t really care, I don’t feel weird, but I do care about what others may think of my solo act. A few weeks ago a mutual friend of both my roommate and I had a birthday party. I had drinks before, so I messaged that he should just meet me there. He wanted to know exactly when I was getting there (to the point of waiting next door till I arrived), just so he didn’t have to go alone. It was so important to him that even though he knew I was out with someone, he kept messaging and messaging. I could care less about rolling solo… but I have a feeling there’s a stigma attached that I should become aware of.
Unfortunately, now that I'm 29, most of my friends are 29. The female friends are really freaking out about this. They're all thinking "I'm running out of time in '09" Of course, the more desperate a girl is, the more bitter she can become about her age, and the more unsettled she is about how far behind her life plan she is... and the more likely it is she won't meet someone b/c of those things.
I fear for a few of my female friends... (no, not any of you who read...I wouldn't do that to you) and I'm trying to convince them to date young guys and ugly guys. I believe I've spoken about my younger man theory, but to reiterate. If a guy is 25 and wants to date a 29 year old girl, he's much more mature than the perennially single 40 year old who wants to date the 29 year old girl. He's much more likely to get serious, and much more likely to treat the girl well. (not monetarily, but supportively). As for the ugly guy theory. . . some girls are insecure and have trust issues, which are overcome by dating an ugly guy (b/c he won't cheat b/c he can't do better)... but the main point of the theory is that if he knows he can't do better, he'll treat you better, want to get serious faster, and catch you up in life to the track you wanted. Essentially, my advice to all of my single friends is "settle, stop being picky at all!"
I have been forced to answer the second dumbest question in the history of the world the last three weeks. Everyone keeps asking me "How does it feel to be 29?" My standard a-hole response is "Congratulations on asking me the SECOND dumbest question in the world! How am I supposed to answer that? Is it supposed to actually feel different or is that the best filler of dead air you can think of?" Most people who know me just laugh off that response... b/c I gave them an opening to ask another question... "If that's the second dumbest question, what's the first?" That's easy, asking my older sister, "How does it feel now that your little brother is 29?" I guess, if “Everything’s Fine in ‘09” I should be a little kinder to those who ask really dumb questions.
If this truly is a “Yes” year, when the next person asks me, “How does it feel now that you’re 29 and signle while your old sister is married w/2 kids and your younger sister is married?” I’ll just respond with “Everything's fine in '09."