The universe seems to be telling me something. First, I went and wrote this blog post about all the things I want before I’m 30 years old. Then, when I sat down with my Tall Iced Caramel Macchiato at Barnes and Noble this morning, the first book I happened to read was titled Adulting. I’ll admit I was a little skeptical when I opened it, expecting a lot of flowery bullshit like “Find your inner peace through mindfulness”, “You are in charge of your own happiness”, and “Don’t be afraid to take risks”. Instead, through Kelly Williams Brown’s no-nonsense voice, I discovered very practical advice that I never knew I needed. Apparently, sinks need to be bleached, I’ve been washing my dishes wrong, and I don’t launder my sheets nearly as often as I should. I shudder to think of what else I’m doing wrong.
After flipping through the book, I started wondering how I could ever achieve adulthood, if that meant doing all 468 steps that the book suggested. Good God, it would be a miracle if I could just start flossing. But then…a lot of things change in 10 years, right? Ten years ago from today, I was an 11-year-old eagerly awaiting the first day of middle school. Clearly, I didn’t know shit then. The only thing I could cook was, what, scrambled eggs? So, maybe (just maybe), I could be a full-grown adult in 10 years. If everything goes really, really well, this might be my life in a decade.
Fast Forward 3650 Days
I’m awake an instant before he paws my right jaw and lands a lick somewhere between my eye and my nose. I know it’s Blitz, our five-year-old Husky, because of his weight. The summertime heat in Pennsylvania has kept Blitz mostly indoors and he’s gained a pound too many off his high-protein, fresh meals I cooked daily. On the other hand, our six-year-old rescue greyhound Quinn seemed to never gain weight no matter what I did. Rolling out of bed, I try not to wake Phineas. After four years of marriage, I’ve realized that it’s better to let him sleep in. Tiptoeing past the nursery (there will be even more hell if I wake the youngsters), I grab Blitz and Quinn’s leashes and head out the front door.
By the time I’m back, Papa Phineas has not-so-gracefully roused Sebastian and Clementine, who are three and two respectively. While I take over breakfast duty, which consists of me insisting that they feed themselves, Phineas goes to take a shower and get dressed for work. When he finishes, he offers to drop off the kids at daycare, since I’m running late anyway. In the shower, I rinse off the run from my fit body, the result of daily workout sessions with my personal trainer. I take note that I need to pay the daycare bill soon, which always takes a chunk out of my paycheck. The damn place is a money sucker, but it’s worth every penny, since they are teaching my children the Mandarin I cannot.
With that, I hop in my BMW X1 (which runs on hydrogen) and drive myself to the station. A half-hour on the cross-continental high-speed train later, I’ve arrived in New York City. The Big Apple. I flash my badge and enter the United Nations building. My secretary greets me before I get to my desk and informs me that the Secretary-General would like to see me immediately. That’s fantastic. I head to the Secretary-General’s office and tell him again that there are no legal loopholes in the UN charter that will allow us to “nuke the hell out of Pyongyang”. Instead, he should focus his efforts on getting China on board with military action. These days, anything has to be approved by the Chinese.
In the afternoon, I take the rail again to Washington DC and head straight to the Department of State. I demand to see Huma Abedin, who is now Secretary of State and has long since abandoned her Weiner of an ex-husband. I need to know by the end of the day if the US is going to vote for military action against North Korea at the next security council meeting. She hems and haws like a good diplomat and tells me she will call again before the day is over. I know that means around 3:00 am. There goes my good night’s sleep.
After leaving the Hill, I return to New York to sit in on the executive council meeting, which nearly bores me to tears. I finish up some paperwork and get out of the office by 6:00 pm. Taking one of the UN vehicles, I swing by my agent’s office on W. 24 Street. She informs me that I’ve topped the New York Times bestsellers list with my newest novel, a thriller about a diplomat who is torn between her country and her lover. I tell her that I’m weeks from finishing up the sequel — just need to add some finishing touches.
Another half-hour later, I’m home and our personal chef has prepared an all-natural, organic, GMO-free, and gluten-free meal for us. My intellectually precocious children tell us about everything they learned in school. Apparently, they know every province and capital of China by heart. I guess that’s…important? After dinner, they start their homework without being told. I peek over their shoulder, awed that they are more literate in Chinese than me.
Flipping open my laptop, I check my online Etsy store. My paintings have not been selling as well as I would like, and I’m considering doing another exhibition or getting my best friend Ainsley’s gallery to show my works. On cue, she calls me to ask if Phineas and I are free to attend a gala for painters in the New York area this upcoming weekend. She insists that I come, since many famous faces are rumored to attend. Laughing, I agree, knowing that Phineas will happily oblige for access to free wine and cheese. Ainsley suggests that I wear white, since Labor Day is just around the corner.
At last, I’ve finished my work for the day. After putting the kids to bed, Phineas and I head to the dark room, the one from which all others are forbidden. We call it the Forbidden City. It’s 9:00 pm and three others are other waiting for us. Together, we form the PGC, the Prehistoric Gamers’ Coalition, a professional League of Legends team that has held the World Championship title for three consecutive years. We practice nightly when it’s championship season — regionals are being held the following weekend and we will be ready. After winning two games and recording a live Q&A with our millions of fans, we retire from the Forbidden City.
At exactly 10:30 pm, I fall asleep, exhausted and satisfied. Phineas will join me in an hour or two.
Back to Present
Why does this life sound so terrible? God, I want to be a kid for eternity now.