Internet, you may not be aware of this, but sometimes it really sucks to be a lady.
And (for once) I’m not even talking about the regular old bullshit things like cramps or unrealistic expectations of physical appearance or really weird ads printed not all that long ago that take a light approach to the topic of BEATING YOUR WIFE.
Silly broad! How is your husband supposed to have the energy to beat you without a decent cup of joe?!
No, the total crap I want to talk about today is the total crap that women have to endure from other women. Take, for instance, this list that has experienced a resurgence of popularity on the Internet of late: “30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She’s 30.”
And no, “Black Snake Moan on Blu-Ray” isn’t on the list; I checked. Like I said, total crap.
The list was originally published in Glamour magazine back in 1997, when I was but a mere 20 years old and probably would have taken it all to heart. Good thing 20-year-old me had better things to do than read, like getting drunk and crying. But now that this list has popped back into the public eye fifteen years later, I feel it only fair to warn today’s young women of the bullshit that lies within. I am, after all, fifteen years older and fifteen years more experienced. I don’t just get drunk and cry anymore — I get drunk and cry AND take care of a three-year-old. It’s different.
I present to you the abhorrent list (in bold text), with my edits. Enjoy:
30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She’s 30 (as written by a staff member at Glamour magazine who has never met any of us and bitch, you don’t know my life!)
By 30, you should have …
1. One old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you’ve come.
List, you’re already not making sense. If I have an ex-boyfriend I can imagine going back to, then why the hell would I have left him in the first place? For kicks? Just to see if he’d notice? Because the school district deemed our relationship “inappropriate”? OK, that last one kind of makes sense. Carry on.
2. A decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.
Lord knows the hallmark of a mature woman is a couch no one else has ever farted on.
3. Something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.
(The man of my dreams is Dr. Teeth.)
4. A purse, a suitcase, and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be seen carrying.
As an owner of a suitcase that looks as if it’s been semi-digested by a rhinoceros, I am here to tell you that carrying a gross piece of luggage builds character. Also, it makes you feel better about the prospect of dying in a fiery plane crash, because hey, at least a nice piece of luggage didn’t get ruined.
5. A youth you’re content to move beyond.
You move beyond it your way, I’ll move beyond it mine.
6. A past juicy enough that you’re looking forward to retelling it in your old age.
But what do I do if I’m turning 30 in two weeks and my past isn’t juicy enough? Just cram a bunch of sex, drugs, and crime into fourteen days? Eh, who cares. No one listens to old people’s stories anyway.
7. The realization that you are actually going to have an old age — and some money set aside to help fund it.
Oh, so I’m going to have an old age AND some money set aside to fund it? Well, thanks, list, for taking care of that for me. Guess I don’t need to set up that retirement fund after all.
8. An email address, a voice mailbox, and a bank account — all of which nobody has access to but you.
My very own email address? What am I — some sort of feminazi? No thanks.
9. A résumé that is not even the slightest bit padded.
Accompanied by a bra that definitely is. You’re not getting every job based on your experience, kid.
10. One friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.
And the ability to accept that the friend you always cry to hates your guts.
11. A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.
To be used all at once or NOT AT ALL.
12. Something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.
Unfortunately, you also deserve the debt.
13. The belief that you deserve it.
SHUT UP, LIST THAT DOES NOT PAY MY BILLS.
14. A skin-care regimen, an exercise routine, and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don’t get better after 30.
Other facets = other things about your body that the list is implying will become floppy and wrinkled and unbangable by age 31, you grody old whore.
15. A solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets of life that do get better.
Oh, go blow it out your ass, list. Not everyone falls on the same career or relationship timeline, so don’t even try to spark a panic in the nearly-30 set who still feel unsure about those things. We all reserve the right to fuck up and/or around as long as we see fit, as evidenced by the fact that Glamour magazine still has subscribers.
By 30, you should know …
1. How to fall in love without losing yourself.
Bleh, then what’s the point? I’ve been trying to shake myself for years.
2. How you feel about having kids.
BUUULLSHIIIIIIT. I still didn’t know how I felt about having at kids at age 30. I didn’t have my daughter until age 32, and frankly, I’m still not sure how I feel about it.
As you can see, the feeling is mutual.
3. How to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.
Oh, come on, everyone knows how to do that: in a flurry of obscenities, screaming, and tears. Grow up, list.
4. When to try harder and when to walk away.
But when do I hold them, and when do I opt to fold them? Kenny Rogers already covered this way better than you, list. Plus, the man makes a delicious roasted chicken.
5. How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.
I’m sure all the date rapers of the world appreciate this inventive new way to blame the victim, so thanks for that, list.
6. The names of the secretary of state, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.
I got worried when I read this one, because I’m 35 years old and I don’t know the best tailor in town. BUT THEN I REMEMBERED THAT I DID.
7. How to live alone, even if you don’t like to.
Is there really anyone who doesn’t know how to live alone? Are there people across the country standing alone in darkened apartments, crying out to no one that they don’t know how to turn on the lights or make the water swirl around in the magical poop-eating seat?
8. Where to go — be it your best friend’s kitchen table or a yoga mat — when your soul needs soothing.
Real talk: I once went on my best friend’s kitchen table after a few beers too many. It wasn’t soothing for anyone.
9. That you can’t change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.
But you can change the length of your parents. BOOM.
10. That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.
Again, is this something that people are actually struggling with? Is it unclear to 30-year-olds that they are no longer in the thick of their childhoods? Are there people getting their asses wiped by someone else while I’m over here wiping my own like a sucker, THIS IS WHAT I’M ASKING.
11. What you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.
Uh, if you wait until age 30 to set these parameters…you’re my kind of gal.
12. That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for very long.
(OK, maybe a little right.)
13. Who you can trust, who you can’t, and why you shouldn’t take it personally.
Oh, like people who’ve never met me and know nothing about my life and try to tell me what to do by age 30 on some random list published amongst articles about pleasing your man and how to lose ten pounds in a week? Maybe don’t trust those people?
14. Not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.
Whew! This means I can finally stop saying “I’m so sorry” to people who’ve recently lost a loved one. I didn’t kill them! Jeez!
15. Why they say life begins at 30
Because on your 30th birthday, you get a combination torso cake/somewhat temporary life partner wearing a North Carolina bikini top over her ample buttercream bosoms. I call her “Shannon.”