Monday, July 6, 2009

You'll never take me alive! OR Do not go gentle into that good night

I’ve talked about growing up one million times before, but my youth is not going quietly. This means I am getting older, but not without a fight. They’re not taking Young Me alive!

Who are “they”? I’ll tell you.

This past Wednesday I sat in my “grown-up” office and worked while all of my siblings and friends went to Warped Tour, which, for the uninitiated, is a giant all-day outdoor summer music festival that features, like, 100 bands. At least! And you can generally meet your favorite bands, get them to sign your shirt and give them high fives.

It’s not that important what Warped Tour is, really. The important thing is I missed it! All because I have stupid adult responsibilities like work. Booooooooooo!

So I tried to get some sympathy from my friends. “Isn’t it a tragedy?” I complained. “Isn’t it frightfully unjust?” I cried. “Why me?” I wailed.

Anyone younger than me was very sympathetic. “I’m so sorry!” they would say.

But anyone older than me had no sympathy for me. Zero. “You just need to grow up,” they said. “You’re being immature,” they sneered. “Aren’t you too old for that?” they asked reproachfully.

Basically what they were saying was “Just be old like us. Stop having fun, because that is NOT what being old is about. ‘No Fun Whatsoever’ is what being old is about.”

Old people are a lot like zombies because zombies are infected and want to infect everyone else. As soon as a zombie bites you, you die and then come back as a zombie. That is common knowledge.

Real life zombies have a real life virus. They just wander around, not thinking much. Their two main goals are:

1. bite people
2. eat brains

They do other zombie deeds, but usually whatever they do can be classified into one of these two categories.

Old people zombies don’t have a virus or anything, but they do have spouses, jobs, kids, bills and wrinkles, and for whatever reason that makes them also wander around, not thinking very much. They also have two main goals, which are as follows:

1. tell younger people to “grow up”
2. be cranky

I’m not entirely sure why this is, but I think it all boils down to “misery loves company.” But they aren’t going to pass their broken dreams on to me.

In college we had a copy of The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks in our bathroom for educational bathroom reading, so I know a thing or two about surviving a zombie attack. You’re supposed to get to the second story of a building and destroy the stairs so the zombies can’t reach you. And then you take a rifle and shoot them all in the head. Piece of cake.

That’s all pretty straightforward, but I’m not sure how it applies in the aforementioned metaphorical sense of warding off fun-sucking old people zombies. I need to figure it out quick because – as recent events have shown – they’re coming for me!

This is not to say that every person who is older than me automatically qualifies as a “zombie.” I know a few adults who still seem to be having fun and are not ridiculously jaded or hostile. The question then is, “How do they do it?”

I don’t know, but when I find out I will be sure to tell you.