The Big Dream and The Get-me-out-of-here

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There is a pandemic sweeping the lives of the late-twenty-early-thirty-something year olds who don’t have children, might have fur-babies and wake up one day asking themselves WHAT THE FUCK.

If you are reading this and taking a big deep breath because you realize you are not alone, you are welcome. If this awakens a long dormant sleeping dragon of thought that you suspected existed but you couldn’t fully recognize, then I apologize – because shiiiiit I am about to justify every niggle you ever felt.

We, the unsettled settled are out there and we are hungry, we are stubborn, we are restless and we are bursting out of our skins. Indulge me in self indulgence all you traditionalists.

Over countless coffee’s and beers, I’ve had the same conversation over and over again. The “I am stuck in a rut and I don’t even know how to get out because I’m too damn tired” one, where educated, hardworking, passionate people, lament the thought bubble we are stuck in. We were told we could have it all. So where is it? Cookie please!

The new normal is that we want to have jobs we like, we want to travel the world, have a couple babies, maybe get married and be able to afford it all while the job market around us is like “JK bae, 10+ years experience, no benefits, $38k pa and you cool with working unpaid overtime and weekends? Holla at me!” and the dating scene is a revolving door of fuckboys and girls who can’t make eye contact with anything but their phones. The news is going: Don’t even THINK about getting on a train/plane or congregating anywhere in public in case of shootings/bombings/knife attacks and our parents are getting older and more dependent. That isn’t depressing. No siree.

Believe me, I’m aware of how lucky I am. I’m writing this to you from a first world country that I am allowed to live in because my parents were born in the right place and got me a “good” passport. If I sound articulate or intelligent by any stretch, it’s because I am also educated thanks to that same birth place, and the guidance of two excellent people who poured money into my brain (via the veins of formal instructional institutions). I’m white, which means I hopefully wont get shot for no reason in my car, and I’m female, which puts me at an advantage or a disadvantage depending on who you talk to, and so long as I’m not running for president.

And listen, I’m the first person to call people out on #firstworldproblems. Believe me. I’ve walked on the sidelines of poverty, I know that there are deeper issues at play in our world than the demented cries of a person who can’t afford the new iPhone.

But if there is one thing I have learned over the last few months of the ups and downs, it is that you can’t just push away things that you feel, and you can’t panic or beat yourself up because you feel them (thanks Mum) or because you are so preoccupied with keeping up the pretences that you have your shit together on social media. We know you don’t have your shit together…we’ve been to your apartment.

I feel it and I’m calling it out. The transition from hopefully graduate to slightly more jaded adult is not that fun at the moment. It’s not cute any more that we feel directionless. This isn’t Sex and the City where our lack of partners is because there is just too much dick to choose from. Our parents are sitting us down telling us they’d “like to see us get on the property ladder” and we’re agreeing with them whole heartedly as we open another letter about our student loans and wondering if we’ll get scurvy if we eat no-brand frosted flakes five nights a week for dinner.

We all started out with such big dreams! We went to school and we played along and we were encouraged to day-dream about what we “wanted to be” when we grew up. And then half of us fell off the wagon somewhere after high school and shrugged and realized that our job’s maybe don’t have to be our careers. Then we split up again when some of us realized that we’d give up that dream job for the security of that paycheck, or the option to travel with work. Those of us that have stayed the course  are more often than not slamming our faces into our laptops in the public library when we are on the hunt for the next job or big break AGAIN, thinking about escaping through English teaching in Asia or “how much DOES selling your *insert body part or fluid* really pay?”

I don’t have the solution to the twentythirtysomething malaise, and no matter how I google it (or Bing it… just kidding The Bing is dead, long live the Bing), no advice post or computer filtered answer can make my decisions for me (though I’d invest in the app that could).

All I know is that personally, I live happiest in the carnage and constant movement of work and sensory overload – when there are TOO many plates spinning in the air (because when that happens, how could I possibly have time to turn inwards). That lifestyle doesn’t really jive-turkey with the expiring “rising-of-the-ladder” career trajectory theory, and I’m tired of trying to be a square peg in a round hole.

Success is measured in many different ways, which is a topic for another day.

But for today – for those this resonates with, just know that you are not alone, and I’ve come to know, for myself anyway, that is the door doesn’t open, I’m just going to have to buy a sledge hammer. The coffee is on me when it comes to these conversations, because maybe if we stack our thoughts and idea’s one on top of each other, we’ll find a way to climb out of these ruts.

 

The hunt for New Roommates

I live in a really cool part of Toronto. Sandwiched between little Italy and little Portugal, close to Korea town (I eat pretty interesting take-away week to week). I love my apartment, in which I have the tiniest little room at the back of the house off the kitchen. I don’t mind my little room, I don’t really have much stuff in this city. I find that the less space I have, the less clutter and THINGS I acquire. So when both of my roommies told me they were moving out, I weighed up moving into one of the nicer rooms in our apartment.

My rent is the cheapest I have ever paid since I began paying rent. It costs me for one month, what it would cost me for 2 weeks in Sydney, and is a third of what I would pay for even a miniscule place in Hong Kong.

I decided with no guaranteed employment after camp in August, and with a bit of a road trip plan in the works for early September with Canadian Boyfriend, to stay where I was.

So now, lets discuss the hunt for new roommates.

Aside from the extremely stressful timing of this whole shenanigan-astic fiasco (what with me leaving for camp in a couple of weeks, and having a sublet) and just the general pain-in-the-assery associated with change, I was eager to tackle the task of finding two people to move into what is now my home.

I put out a ping online to friends and friends of friends. No bites. Bad timing. Lots of people looking for new digs for the start of September but alas July 1st, you were not the prettiest pig in the pageant. Its okay. Have a cookie.

And so I turned to that big aquarium of rare and bizarre creatures in the sky:

Craigslist (pronounced cray.g.z.list and not creg.s.list you North American foooooools)

And boy did I get a response!

I guess our rent is pretty reasonable for the area and the two rooms going are decent sized. I received 20+ emails in the first 3 hours. I was just happy that people were interested and I wasn’t going to have to scrape the barrel for people or die alone… wait…what?

I was pretty upfront about the place, what I’m like and the type of person I was after. I asked for people to tell me a little bit about themselves when they emailed me. The people who wrote “is the apartment still available?” or “I have interest. When I see the place?” and didn’t introduce themselves didn’t get an email with any further details.

But the ones who sounded normal, guys or girls, I was willing to give them the shot and show them around.

It just goes to show that anyone can represent themselves well on paper.

Where to begin, where to begin?

Perhaps with the guy that came first to look around. Tatoo sleeves, and insane scars all over his face from when he used to have 30+ piercings ABOVE the belt. Okay. Had a strange energy about him. Ex Cabinet maker, turned Paramedics student. I decided I better keep notes on all these people as I’d never remember them all. Beside his name I wrote “Nice. But kind of seems like that normal guy who would become a seriel killer.”

NEXT

Sweet, shy, Scottish guy who moved to Toronto around the same time I did. Cross eyed (me – extremely awkward and not sure where to focus when speaking to him – but no problem as he didn’t keep my eye for more than a second). Told waffling stories about things his grandfather said, or a random, completely out of context funny moments recalled, with no pretext or set up…

NEXT

Really nice, kind of dweeby guy who kind of reminded me of Howard from ‘The Big Bang Theory’. Works at Medieval times (a restaurant EXPERIENCE with live horses and jousting competitions, serving wenches tankards of ale…) as a trumpet player, studies music at University. Told me about his very shy, sweet girlfriend who might come and stay now and then. Yep fine no problem. This guy was looking like a winner… but just as we got up to go, his craigslist started to show.

“Oh there is one more thing” he begins, “I’m not sure if I should mention it…” he trails off.

Me: so friendly and encouraging, really think this guy is nice: “Go ahead. Be open, what is it?”

Him: “well… it’s not that my girlfriend and I have an open relationship really but…occassionally there would be a random person coming home with me.”

Me: (Is this guy telling me he kind of cheats on his girlfriend?) “Ok….

Him: “Oh! It’s not cheating… My girlfriend would be there too…”

Me: ……………………. uhm……………….

Him: “Not very often. But on Occasion. I thought I should mention it…”

Me: (TOTALLY Flustered) Right… okay so…. uhm just out of curiosity boys or…girls or… (WHY DID I ASK THAT?!)

Him: “Oh! Both! Sometimes at the same time rarely.”

He blushes. I blush.

Me: …………………………………… Thanks for coming to see the place. I’ll let you know.

There were others.

But nothing stood out like that exchange.

And I’m not against whatever it is he needs to do in the privacy of his bedroom. But… in our first meeting? In the first 30 minutes of getting to know the guy. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thankful he said it, because he was top three.

Thankfully, since then, I found two cool girls who are happy to move in.

brrrrrrr*SHUDDER*rrrrrrr

I dipped my toe in the craigslist pond, and lived to tell the tale.

We’ll see how this all works out.