N.B: This post comes to you in the midst of peak FOMO season, when it feels like the entity of your Instagram feed has collectively migrated to Capri and Mykonos.
To borrow from our President’s ten-word vocabulary, envy is a nasty feeling. It eats one up inside like one of those intestinal parasites, preventing them from attaining any semblance of peace. Religious scriptures of every faith speak of envy as the predominant source of evil. Envy catalyzes wars and ruins lives. And yet it remains a human emotion that is not going anywhere. In fact, I believe that it is currently experiencing a revival, having been reformatted, democratized, revolutionized, by social media.
In a way, we are victims of our time, the first generation stuck with the virtual embryos of the big green monster right at the tips of our fingers, ready to unleash the worst in us. We scroll and we look and we “like” and we absorb everything with the impressionable sponges that are our brains. And then, before you know it, we are comparing ourselves to some Slovakian IMG model or globetrotting fashion editor or second degree acquaintance who has graduated to become a Tribeca housewife. Because, on the surface, they all seem to have it so easy.
My friend is in the most boring long-distance situtationship of all time. Trust me, I’m not offending her by writing this, as she is the first one to admit to the dullness of the liaison. Their text message exchanges include extensive coverage of rain precipitation. Their monotonous phone chats could put a teething baby to sleep. No sparks fly in person – or in the bedroom – leaving most of us all wondering what, exactly, inspires her to keep him around.
The other night, after enduring the Chinese water torture of listening to her and Mr. Snooze discuss their bedtime rituals (he likes to sleep in socks!), I decided to unravel the mystery.
“Why are you subjecting me to this? Actually why are you subjecting yourself to this?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” she replied. “I just have a lot of anxiety and having me call him every night calms me down.”
“You know what else calms you down? Chamomile tea.”
“Exactly. He’s my chamomile tea.”
And, just like that, my friend had tapped into a SATC-worthy theory: “Some men are like chamomile tea”.
Full disclosure: I hate going out. What used to be a favored pastime in my early twenties has since become a bona-fide punishment, an ordeal that essentially starts with me mentally fast-forwarding to the moment that I get to go home, remove all traces of makeup, and cuddle up to my dog.
It was supposed to be fun and glamorous and liberating, wasn’t it? I blame the misconception on Sex and The City, the OG Fake News that sold us a warped version of being single in your thirties. Every weekend, Carrie & Co. would put on 3K worth of brand-new designer clothing and strut out to the Manhattan hotspot du jour and blow another few hundred bucks on fancy food and nasty pink Cosmos and have the time of their damn lives. MOMENTS LIFE IS MADE OF. Oh, and there would be brunch the next day.
Some girls grow up wanting to be women. They dream of embodying the elegance of female role models, the power of women executives, the nurturing spirit of mothers. This was never me. A clumsy tomboy with a penchant for adventures, I always relished in my girl card and its accompanying sense of freedom. I thrived on my chaotic travels, my childlike curiosity, my denim shorts and makeup-free M.O. “You look eighteen” was always the pinnacle of compliments, and not because it meant that my skin was still void of wrinkles (it’s not), but because it signified I had retained the youthful spirit that made me me.
A parting letter to my roaring twenties, conceived on the eve of my 30th birthday (with a glass of tequila in tow).
Oh my twenties
You were a glorious ride
A flash of YOLO moments
And denim shorts that exposed my behind
Of nights that started in a sober air
And ended up with man-tousled hair
Jordan Nadler attempts to find an answer to a question that may no longer be relevant in today’s election. For more no-nonsense insights, follow Jordan on Twitter.
“Would you ever date a Republican?” I was recently asked. It struck me as a funny question. The way the person said “Republican” sounded like she had just asked me if I would ever bear-hug a cactus.
This election has seemingly turned Republicans and Democrats into warring clans. It’s like we’re the Jets and the Sharks (obviously the Democrats are the Sharks) except this Godforsaken election has rendered all of us too exhausted to sing. The words “Republican” and “Liberal” have become synonymous with every other negative word in the English language. We have never been more divided, but it’s not politics that we are divided on. This election has so little to do with political theory and so much to do with who we are as people.