by Karen Miner
When you're a too-cool teen, you never expect that life will lead you down a path to inevitable uncool-ness. But it does — it always does. One day you wake up and you find yourself doing these things that you thought were reserved for OLD PEOPLE. Oh, the horror...
1. Eating a grapefruit for breakfast.
There's something about eating a whole grapefruit that makes me feel like such a grown-up — it's the epitome of old lady fruit. And I'm not talking grapefruit and a chocolate doughnut, or grapefruit and a bowl of Lucky Charms. I'm talking just one single, bitter grapefruit you have to fight out of the peel with that fancy little spoon. That's your ENTIRE breakfast. With a cup of black coffee.
2. Having a wardrobe that consists of clothes exclusively from Target and Costco.
I was that mall kid that spent her hard-earned mall job dollars on ALL the Guess clothes. These days? A price tag over $20 gives me heart palpitations, and frankly, even $20 is a bit steep. The Target clearance section is where it's at. Merona and Kirkland for life.
3. Getting SUPER excited upon finding a Starsky & Hutch sweater for $2.79.
You know the one... that iconic sweater made famous by Paul Michael Glaser. Picture this: I'm aimlessly browsing through the Target clearance rack and stumble upon THAT sweater. Mild hyperventilating happens when I see that it's my size. Full blown hyperventilating happens when I see that it's $2.79. Did this sweater and its price tag actually time-warp here from 1975?
4. Cleaning up cat barf so, so, so many times a day.
Remember the good ol' days when you would get home and pretend not to see the cat barf so Mom would be the "first" one to find it and clean it up herself? That doesn't work out so well when it's your own house. Mental note: Research breeds of cats that don't throw up. Ever.
5. Wearing both a mouth guard AND a Breathe Right strip to bed, because I'm just that sexy.
A girl's gotta breathe, and 20 years from now I'd like to have some teeth left, so... No apologies for this one. I'll bring sexy back another day.
6. Going to the mall exclusively for pretzels.
The mall — once a place of such enjoyment, where hours could be wiled away wandering and gossiping — is now such a hellish endeavor. Except on Tuesdays, because Tuesday is $1.50 pretzel day at the pretzel store and $1.50 pretzels with spicy cheese dip are worth braving the mall for. But you finish your delicious pretzel and then you get the hell out of there. Fast.
7. Ditching the heels for Birkenstocks.
I swore I would be that girl that kept on keeping on with the heels, even after I stopped working in a "real" office. That lasted for approximately three days. The work clothes quickly got pushed to the back the closet with each load of laundry, and the yoga pants and Birkenstocks became my official uniform. For all the benefits of working from home, remaining stylish is not one of them.
8. Uttering the words: "I can drink at home for a fraction of the cost!"
When you're in your clubbing days, paying $12 for a shitty watered down cocktail is fine. IT'S FINE. But really, it's not fine. It's dumb. Go home and make yourself a proper cocktail with good booze (and plenty of it) and sit on the couch in your Starsky sweater, yoga pants, and Birkenstocks. And enjoy another perk of drinking at home: no sweaty dudes trying to grind on you.
Actually, on second thought, I'll take these things over being a teen any day. (Not that I ever drank as a teen. That's illegal.)