Monday, September 13, 2010

What is it about 20-somethings?

This article , "What is it about 20-somethings," from the NY Times Magazine was actually quite boring, being more about history than science.

However, it did inform me that a 30-year-old today is about as mature as a 25-year-old from the 1970s:

We’re in the thick of what one sociologist calls “the changing timetable for adulthood.” Sociologists traditionally define the “transition to adulthood” as marked by five milestones: completing school, leaving home, becoming financially independent, marrying and having a child. In 1960, 77 percent of women and 65 percent of men had, by the time they reached 30, passed all five milestones. Among 30-year-olds in 2000, according to data from the United States Census Bureau, fewer than half of the women and one-third of the men had done so. A Canadian study reported that a typical 30-year-old in 2001 had completed the same number of milestones as a 25-year-old in the early ’70s.

When I read the 'five milestones to adulthood', I felt badly about the fact that I'd already achieved 4 of them. You see, I really don't like the idea of getting older. Don't get me wrong--getting older is obviously better than the alternative. It just seems to imply gaining a whole lot of responsibility at the cost of a whole lot of fun. (Not that I actually do have have a lot of fun now...but I like the idea that I could have fun if I wanted to.) Plus, you get wrinkles. And bifocals. And arthritis.

But, there seem to be some benefits...namely, chances are, when you get older, you make a lot more money, which you can spend doing things that are fun...or, at least, buying things that are cool, which is a reasonable approximation of fun, and perhaps the best an old person can muster.

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