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How old do you have to be to feel like an adult? I'm starting my 29+1th year. I'm older than most of my high school role models were when I was in high school, and in years at least, if not in "variety of things experienced on this earth," more and more I'm one of the seniors of the group--of course, that's hanging out with gamers, furries and other youth-intensive subcultures. I *think* I'm the head of some sort of household, or at least the first name on the lease and the main contact person for bills and such.

It may be that I'm in a very "beta wolf" position in my life right now. I'm support staff--an administrative assistant, and something about that subordinate role, the constant play of checks and balances, permissions, et cetera. Maybe it's finances--we're renting the house. I was in a state of mild terror when the landlord said he wanted his son to look at the place--what if it was to pass it over to a new tenant? Argh! Of course, being in debt is a part of being an adult.

I dunno. I still feel as jittery and young as when I went into college, and the world is just as challenging. This will probably be an eternal state.

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
baktre
May. 11th, 2004 10:35 am (UTC)
I think that having dependents--I guess I mean kids--is what really forces one into an 'adult' role, into playing daddy. If you aren't forced to be sure on someone else's behalf you can remain uncertain, which one's role models as a youth weren't. Because THEY were playing daddy, necessary due to the power relationship between youngster and adult.

It's circular but I think it makes sense.
spottylogic
May. 11th, 2004 10:54 am (UTC)
That feels like it's the case sometimes. I've been forced into or cheerfully accepted the role of "the responsible one" on and off for years, more on than off over the last few, but I technically had an out--no matter how bad things get at the house, I can (and could) always bug out. My default mode is to play daddy (more mommy, really, dad always seems more the 'tough love' role-model), but, yeah, it's play, taking care of people as a hobby instead of a serious comittment.
baktre
May. 11th, 2004 12:55 pm (UTC)
Rrrr. That last sentance makes me uncomfortable, and I'm worried that my use of the phrase 'Playing daddy' contributed to it.

I say that to mean that anyone adopting a role has to play-act as they grow into it, that being self-consious about the presetation of self in an important role is normal. In my world it is anyways.

I like to think that the job one does in a role--including being responsable or taking care of people--speaks for itself. If you do a good job consistently, then you are demonstrating serious comitment. I think that speaks way more loudly than proclimations of intent.

My response is probably completely off base from what you were saying, but hearing that coming from you made me twitch. Sorry. :/
spottylogic
May. 11th, 2004 01:40 pm (UTC)
To crib from the Principia, everything I'm saying is in some sense true, false, and meaningless. I love taking care of people, but it's a choice, a role that I've adopted. Someone in the "surprise, you have an unexpected family!" doesn't have the luxury of an honorable escape route--but that's not healthy growth necessarily. Can be, I've seen it go both ways. Probably not what you were trying to say, though.

Yeah, "playing daddy" probably has a way different context for me than for you, I do have a wide assortment of father-figure issues and horror stories--that would probalby put me solidly in the camp of "yeah, who doesn't?" :)

So far as professional demeanor goes, I've had to build one from scratch, and cultivate the illusion of being organized. No telling when that will become more than an illusion, if ever :) Some of my grousing may be that I don't really produce anything tangible, nothing I can point to and say "I did that!" Spreadsheets and data-mining is so very ephemeral. If I do my job perfectly, most of it's invisible.

With the merger of the out-of-state office, though, I've actually got a degree of seniority, which is a peculiar sensation.
luckless_willow
May. 11th, 2004 03:07 pm (UTC)
Understanding
Hey sweetie,
I completely understand. I'm in this position of Administrator with a whole slew of people that I take care of. The work is very much like juggling fire - when just one thing drops, everything goes up in flames. It doesn't matter how many things you remember to do. People tend to only notice the things you missed while doing the twenty things you DID take care of. Human nature, I guess.
(But, it's also really annoying when they refer to you as 'just a secretary.')
As to the organization, well, I'm certainly trying but that kind of thing is very hard for people like you and I. We have creative minds and that part of us loves to spread sensory input around for sifting - running it through our fingers like precious jewels to spark our genius.
It's hard to hold that side back sometimes.
knghtsky
May. 12th, 2004 03:22 am (UTC)
Re: Understanding
LW ? NEAT ! Been a while. When next in Austin don't let ole Fuzzhead have all the fun, spread the helloes about !
luckless_willow
May. 12th, 2004 07:40 am (UTC)
Re: Understanding
It may be a while before I get back Austin way. Last time was just before christmas. Now, I've just returned from Killeen but I never got to Austin.

The Killeen boys did however manager to drag me back into the Cam and they forced me to play Alexa by prodding me with big pointy sticks. (Geez, you'd think military guys would have better access to weapons...)

At any rate, they are forcing me, with those same pointed sticks, to attend my very first ICC. Easily enough for me since it will be held in North Carolina.

*grin*

Will I see you there?
spottylogic
May. 12th, 2004 05:43 am (UTC)
Re: Understanding
Thanks :) I do as much problem-solving as data-juggling, so I'm not creatively stifled, but there is always that sense of suspended ahnnialation that comes with being a load-bearing cog. Come to it, though, in this age of outsourcing and down-sizing, they only have a few non-load-bearing cogs.
artfulreggie
May. 11th, 2004 11:31 am (UTC)
Papa Spotty? Never. A grizzly beard and low key sweater aren't very becoming of you.
spottylogic
May. 11th, 2004 11:44 am (UTC)
Christ, I'd look like Gene Shallot :)
knghtsky
May. 11th, 2004 02:24 pm (UTC)
On Slightly un-related news
I searched... I looked high and low. Questing for espirit de Spotty. Pouring through text and website alike. Thn through random chance I found the perfect place.. edmund scientific, suppliers of ore to high shcool chem classes and more america over.

I owed you a birthday gift of some... note. It took a while, but I have found a stately useful item, perfect for mantaining the image of organization for work, while at the same time being somewhat esoteric, and I found an item that is just plain weird for home.

It arrives soon ... very very soon.
spottylogic
May. 11th, 2004 10:16 pm (UTC)
Re: On Slightly un-related news
Edmund Scientific? OMFG, their catalog is a magical wonderland of amazing goodness. Neat!! Did you ever see the widget that let you look INTO YOUR OWN EYE?!?
Mwahahah. This, I look forward to. I've already got your birthday present. It's small, but highly offensive.
knghtsky
May. 12th, 2004 03:23 am (UTC)
Re: On Slightly un-related news
You should be pleased on both items.. both functional and educational, but only one should be seen by all once done


Mwa ha hahahahahah
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )