Top Ten Ways to Squander the Best Years of Your Life

Who doesn’t love a good top ten list? Especially when the list is just sad and self-deprecating. Standing here at age 32, I look back at my teenage years and early twenties and a single tear squeaks out from my cringing eye. I hope everyone finds some humor in the travesty that was my youth:

10. Go straight home after school, do not pass go, do not collect any cool points – Who has any fun doing this? Backpack over both shoulders, hair parted cleanly on the left like a fascist dictator, broad-striped polo, overly snug blue jeans that never knew the touch of the top of my XJ-900 discount high-tops. I silently walked to and from the bus stop, head down, minding my own business everyday. Never hungout too late or forgot to call home. Good God man, do something with yourself!

9. Date a strictly religious girl in high school – Life is too short to spend it trying to breech the walls of godly servitude with the inadequacies of male teenage hormones. My days and nights spent wooing a girl who already had a man in her life. My 15-year-old game with the ladies was no match for The Jesus.

8. Play video games until eye twitches involuntarily – Nothing says “Chick Magnet” or “Life of the Party” like beating Super Mario Bros. 3 in 25 minutes and then taking polaroid pictures of the screen to prove it to all your friends at school the next day. Oh yeah, I did that. Nobody seemed to be as impressed as I thought they would be, which pretty much sums up the extent of most of the accomplishments of my youth.

7. Ferociously consume Doritos and Pepsi like they’re going out of business tomorrow – Combine this one with my video game prowess and you have a formula that can’t help but keep you from getting any action with the ladies. What does Johnny-Football-Hero have that I don’t have? Besides the fact that he is not borderline diabetic, his skin is not pale and blotchy from lack of exposure to the sun, his teeth are white and his fingers aren’t stained orange.

6. Work at a fast food joint/clean toilets in Wal-Mart – As you can see here, I got the privilege of experiencing the intricacies of the entire digestive process first hand. McDonald’s in Wal-Mart, followed by the ascension of my powerful career to stockboy in the Wal-Mart itself. Talk about having your life-force drained on a daily basis. I guess the only upside to this is things have to get better from here, right?

5. Put off getting a car/love masheen – Worst. Decision. Ever. The only means of escape that you have as a young man working a crappy job, living in a crappy apartment in a crappy town. Having a car is your own little piece of freedom and solitude. My advice for any young man/woman? Get in a car and just drive away. See where you end up.

4. Get involved with a married woman – This should seem mind-numbingly obvious… to some. To others, “It seemed like a good idea at the time.” I wish I could go back in time and kick my own ass. It wouldn’t matter I suppose. When I was 19 you couldn’t tell me anything. My 19-year-old self would look at me now and try to tell him he doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about… what a waste.

3. Have kids before you’re done growing up – Were you forced to grow up too fast after a rocky childhood? Do you work at a fast food restaurant or clean up human feces at Wal-Mart? Are you involved with a married woman? Do you have no car, money, friends, life, or future to speak of? If you answered yes to any or all of these questions then you might have what it takes to be a real moron and compound your problems infinitely!

2. Join the army – Why be miserable at home when you can do it overseas, in a desert, surrounded by people with explosives who hate you! You didn’t really want those eight years of your life from 21-29, did you? What were you going to do anyway? Start your life?

1. Marry a bona fide lunatic – Ah, the discolored and rotting cherry on top of it all. I think the fact that she got drunk before our luxurious Reno wedding should have been at least one small clue. Ya know, in case I missed the paternity and adultery issues from before. Damn, was I an astute young man or what? I spell relief with a D.

Thank God that’s all over. I’m sure my 30’s will go off without a hitch….


28 responses to “Top Ten Ways to Squander the Best Years of Your Life

  1. Oh, the joys of the teenage/ young adult years. Why, if I only had a time machine…I’d go as fast as possible in the opposite direction. Cheers.

  2. I toast to your happy thirties!

    And I cringe as I realize I was one of those “strictly religious” girls in high school. Big mistake on my part. I should have given in to the male hormones.

  3. Pingback: Top Ten Ways to Squander the Best Years of Your Life (via The Ignorant Bystander) « Everybody Wants Some

  4. Sometimes it just takes experience in different ways for many of us to get a path going. I can identify with some of this. I was the guy with Jesus. Although at times that did not stop me from making some really bad choices, and it should not have, I am glad that with gaining a little maturity along the way, I had an anchor spiritually and a father who stood in the way from time to time just to kindly ask, what are you doing. My stepson is a good fellow. At 16 he tried to buck the system that everyone was fair about helping with. We had a little talk.
    I would encourage, as you help to serve some kids in your life, do the hard thing every now and then and become that wall that says no. Your experiences can be the fuel. They might not like it now; however, if you spend the time with them and “go in prayer and thanks that you made it out alive”, those you help with thank you for it later.
    Best of luck to you.

  5. true, so true… on the other hand, having learnt all this, we should maybe hurry up and enjoy the 30’ies before that’s f***ing over and we’ll start looking back at THAT and realize how much time we spent being all nostalgic 🙂
    sorry, was just a bit sarcastic. I like it.

  6. I saw your comment on my blog and decided to check out your site. I fully expected to find an average blog with average posts. I was not prepared for what I found and the laughter that followed! Great reading!

  7. Wow. That’s…epic.

    But it sounds like you learned from it. And you’re definitely a good enough writer to pull off describing it! I really do hope your 30s are much better.

    Leigh Anne

  8. This is an awesome post.
    #1 reminded me of my college years – I worked full time while I went to school. I did not go to parties. I did not make friends. Didn’t even feel like college, felt sorta like an extension of high school (during which I also worked a full time job, went to class and had zero fun). When everyone talks about their crazy days in college, I think of papers, nights in the library, working, going to class in a suit because I had a meeting later that day… what a waste. I was also with a guy much older than me, so he wasn’t feeling the college scene, so I ended up behaving like a married woman before my time (and these were the years when I should have been dating and having fun!). Wish we could get a do-over. Better late then never right?? I’m trying to make up for it now, for sure.

  9. Very funny! Especially #8. I took pictures of my “Kaboom!” scores so that I could send them to Activision.
    Yes I am female. And yes, someone eventually married me.

  10. Very cool and funny post! Not in my 30’s yet but I do know a few friends that did the #8, 7, 6, 3, 2 ( and I have my own list of life squandering events) . Any ways those are good experiences none the less and sometimes it’s good to think back and just laugh about the things we did as teenagers 😀 . After all, we are all made up of our ventures in life.

  11. Two things you seem to have acquired through these experiences: humility and a wonderful sense of humor. Stay grounded and don’t be afraid to do hard things in the future. The best years of your life are still ahead of you.

  12. Good luck in your 30’s. I hope that your top ten list will be much brighter in ten years.

  13. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, or mentally unstable. I can never sort that sh-t out. Loved your post!

  14. f*kng hilarious!!! and oh so true!
    good luck in your 30s… i can only imagine whats in store for us…

  15. Absolutely hilarious post- best years of your life 😉

  16. You’ll like 30’s. They’re pretty rad. I’m on the outer edge of thirty and I’ve enjoyed them. So cool to read somebody’s life who wasn’t all charmed and perfect. I never did anything in highschool either. I thought I was being REALLY cool if I stayed up really late…at home. And was sure to have my blinds open just a peep, in case anyone I knew drove by they would see my lights on…and know how cool I was. I could go on and on… ~Heather

  17. venomousharridan

    Thank you for the laugh and the inspiration. I may have to chronicle my Top 10 Worst Decisions of All Time, and at 41, I’ve got a decade on you, which is 10 more years of opportunities for colossal, um, life blunders.


  18. you seem to have had a colourful life…loved your post…and the background image too!!

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