5 Things That Real Adults Do Ali Ashbaker

Age is just a number, they say. And by they, I mean 14-year-old girls who are trying to convince anyone over 25 to take them seriously. Also me when I realize that I’m about to hit up my 10-year high school reunion this summer and I have nothing to show for myself except for a high quality robe that I bought on Treat Yo’ Self Tuesday and a dream diary that I’ve inconsistently written in for the past 4 years:

“February 12, 2013. Last night I dreamt that I died, was cut up, deep fried and fed to the homeless. This probably has something to due with my diet… or my finances.”

Believe it or not, you guys, I’m an adult. The future of our country.  At the very least, the future of my neighborhood. I am old enough to drink, smoke, rent a car and sign up for a reality TV show. Except, I don’t really feel like an adult. Responsible, controlled and appropriate are all adult-like adjectives and I wouldn’t use any of them to describe myself in an online dating profile. I created the following list to separate the Real Adults from the Impostor Adults because I’ve been living the last nine years as a full on, falsified impostor of an adult who should not be doling out morsels of wisdom to anyone younger than me, but I do all the time. So, if you do these things, you are a Real Adult. Congratulations!

Updating Software: I feel like a really adultish thing to do is to keep your computer up to date. My iTunes is still from like, 2007. I can barely open it up without crashing my entire computer. I completely understand that it would only take a couple of hours and an Internet connection to turn it all around, but I never can bring myself to go through with it. ‘Would you like do update Adobe Reader today?’ No. No, I would not. I feel like now I’m setting some kind of record and I should just keep it up for as long as possible. You know, for posterity’s sake.

Oxford Commas: Punctuation can be tricky, but real adults have opinions about punctuation. I feel like I would instantly marry any guy I met who had a secure handle on the Oxford comma situation because a man who can handle an Oxford comma probably doesn’t forget to pay taxes or refill parking meters and I need that in a man. Homophones go in this category, too. A dude who can keep there, their, they’re straight is probably someone I want to mate with. Last November, I mixed up ‘there’ for ‘their’ and it’s still the last thing I think of before I go to sleep at night. Real adults don’t mess up their homophones.

Shower… Every Day: Like, even on the weekend. Even on a rainy Sunday when you’re going to do nothing else except order takeout and pretend to workout but then never end up doing anything except watch TV shows in marathon form. And don’t even get me started on daily hair washing. I mean, a 10 minute shower is one thing, but who are these magical women who wash their hair daily before work? And blow-dry it? And probably use some sort of heat protectant and finishing spray? I mean, this is just never going to happen for me. My arms get too tired and the blow dryer just makes me too sweaty and then I need a shower again.  I love the look of freshly styled hair, unless it’s 6:00 a.m. and then, magically, I love the look of disheveled bedhead.

Vacations: Real adults take vacations. They use their paid time off from work, they plan in advance and they go on vacations with other people who go on vacations.  They set up email messages to let everyone else know they are out of the office. And, most importantly, they don’t sleep on their friend’s floor while they are vaycaying. Oh, no. They book a hotel… ahead of time. They don’t roll through town looking for a vacancy sign and then go in and ask how much it is for one night and then decide that it is cheaper to sleep in their car. No, they don’t do that. I would really like to vacation like an adult because I’m at that age where sleeping on the floor has lost it’s novelty and makes my back all cracky.

Planning: It was only recently brought to my attention that some people plan their meals ahead of time. That way, they only have to go to the grocery store once a week. And that way, when they have unannounced guests around dinner time, they can offer them something for dinner other than microwave popcorn and Girl Scout cookies. They set themselves reminders about people’s birthdays and due dates and they write down important information on things besides napkins and McDonald’s hashbrown wrappers. The last time I got my online banking password right on the first try was never. I never get it right. And I can never remember the answers to my own damn security questions. I bet real adults keep a spreadsheet, or servant, or some kind of locking safe for that kinda stuff.

While being a Real Adult seems pretty magical and serene, I think it’s probably best to have a good mix of both, right? But definitely the vacations. Vacations are where it’s at. Are there any adulty things that I forgot? And are you a real adult? Or are you Club Impostor?

Featured image via ShutterStock

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  1. Definitely a Club Impostor! Also, real adults don’t eat a whole pack of cookies for dinner, while watching Big Bang Theory. I’m pretty sure…

  2. My boyfriend is a real adult. He does everything listed above. I don’t do any of that (speaking of which, i really need to shower). The problem here is that we live together. The “Real Adult” and the”Newly graduated Unemployed Mess.” Needless to say, it’s going well.

  3. I love this.
    Also, at 6 am. Bedhead is totally sexier than getting out from under the 8 blankets and 6 pillows that I’m sure real adults don’t have.

  4. Gosh! Looks like i’ve been a “real” adult all my life :)

  5. Guess I’m a half-adult when you look at it this way. I just hate it when my computer gets slow and I don’t like my hair greasy (it gets greasy after 1 day…). I have to say that my typing skills get worse, my dad used to be a teacher, so when I’m texting him I really have to check the spelling, lol. I do go on vacations, though backpacking isn’t an adult way of spending vacations, right? Or is it if you’re doing it with your husband :)

  6. Oh jeez, thanks for the reminder that I’m not a real adult yet -_-

  7. I’m very glad my betrothed has all that stuff down, otherwise our marriage would crash into a ball of overboiled noodles, kinda like the reverse of what happened to the thing at the end of the original “The Thing”. Also, I have to use the word “betrothed” because I’m not certain if I should use “fiancee” or “fianceé”.

  8. That article made a whole lot more sense when I stopped reading ‘vacations’ as ‘vaccinations’…

  9. Def an Impostor. Wow, I didn’t think about it that way until I read this list, but it totally makes sense. I think “going to bed on time” could be added to this list. It’s 3am and I’m up surfing the internet, which led me here and that’s great., but now I am going to sleep in all day tomorrow which is not very adult-like. Meanwhile, my successful and very adult boyfriend is sound asleep and will wake up early tomorrow (never have I ever), go to the gym (yeah right), eat a big breakfast (McDonalds coffee at best), shower (no), iron his clothes (not put them in the dryer for 10 mins), all before leaving for work on time.
    But hey, he wont be able to talk to his friends about Chappell’s Show re-runs and Hello Giggles articles, so that’s on him.

  10. Real adult, but I do not shower every day. Its just not good for my skin and DEFINITELY not good for my hair. Omg the dry skin and the dry hair/scalp. Holy Moses.

  11. OMG. I’m an adult?

  12. Hilarious! I think most of us can relate. Nice to know there are others out there!

  13. ************REAL ADULT GOLD STARS*************

    ———————–Su-M–Tu-W–Th-F–Sa——-
    Updating Software–*—*—*—*—-*—*—*——–
    Oxford Commas—–*—*—*—*—-*—*—*——–
    Shower—————*—*—*—*—-*—*—*——–
    Vacations————*—*—*—*—-*—*—*——–
    Planning————-*—*—*—*—-*—*—*——–

  14. The only thing that seems to change as I get older is the need to shower more often. I guess I’m just not old enough to shower every day. I’m more of wake with 20 minutes to get ready for work. Shower at night every few days and just put my hair in a ponytail. Why waste precious sleep?

  15. You are SOOOO funny! I kinda saw myself there. I really enjoyed reading this, and hoping that when my 23 year old daughter told me, “just give me one more year”, that she meant she will be truly ready to do what real adults do. ;-)

  16. I am 26 and I still get nervous when I have to show my ID for a drink because I feel as though I am truly an adult imposter and someone is going to find me out one day. I never update my software even though my computer offers to do so for me, not sure what an oxford comma is (and I was an English major!), I like sleeping in too much to shower everyday, have never planned a vacation without extensive help, and planning anything ahead of time is probably my greatest foe.

    glad I’m not alone!

  17. Oh no! Reading this hilarious article makes me feel like an actual adult.. I’m only 20 which is far too young! One saving grace is that I don’t wash and blow dry my hair everyday because it is SO bad for hair. By the time your colleagues are 40, their hair will look like it’s 85.

  18. I thought this was really funny,i’m in my 40′s and still behave like i’m 20,its only when i look in the mirror do i realise i’m not,who wants to get old anyway,try to hold onto being young minded as long as you can,if more of us relaxed about life we’ll all be a lot happier.

  19. This article is fantastic. Last fall I had my first “Paid Time Off” vacation, flew by myself, met up with friends at the hotel.. I felt so grown up. I mean, as grown up as one can feel on a Thursday running around Disney World thinking “I can’t believe my work is paying me right now!!”

    Here’s my own #6: Going to Bed. I mean actually going to bed.. not falling asleep with a computer in your lap with the light still on, then waking up and debating the need to actually get out of bed to turn off the light. I just got a new job that requires a big girl move across the country, and this is a change that I noticed I’ve made. It’s like something clicked! My college “Do all the things online now, I only need 4 hours of sleep” mindset has changed into a “I should go to bed because I have a lot to do tomorrow”

    Other than that, I’m totally an impostor. I’m currently in the 3rd round of what I’m calling a Stuffed Animal Showdown to choose what stuffed animals I’m going to bring with me on my move! It’s really intense.

  20. I can’t quite relate to the bedhead comment enough. All my female colleagues talk about their mornings that start before 6.00am where they’ve got up, showered, done their hair, carefully chosed their outfits and been out the door with time to spare. Whilst I’m still begrudgingly getting out of bed 20 minutes before I hate to leave (If I’m lucky) dragging a brush through my hair, badly slapping foundation on and running out 5 minutes late in backwards tights and awkwardly buttoned shirts!