Sacramento

The Peter Pan Complex [Sac Is The New Neverland!]

Before I turned 30, I was actually ready to turn 30. I couldn’t wait to leave the decade of my twenties behind. It’s not that I hated my twenties, it’s just that it was the decade that, for me, was made of poor decisions and setbacks. I went to four colleges before I realized that school wasn’t for me, I dated idiot after idiot, I partied a lot and hung out with the wrong crowd.. I mean, nothing out of the ordinary for a younger twenty-something.

So, needless to say, when I finally felt like my world wasn’t so tilted anymore, when I felt like I had finally gotten myself on the straight and narrow, I realized that I was ready to leave those years behind me.

But why did it take me so long to finally get my ducks in a row? There are a couple of contributing factors.

First, my generation is taking longer and longer to settle down with a significant other [if we ever do]. As admirable as it is that people want to be successful in their own life before joining forces with another, the longer we wait to settle down, the harder it is to intertwine another life with ours. We get accustomed to doing things our own way, coming and going as we please, eating how we want, getting comfortable in our day-to-day routines – suddenly adding another person to the mix is freakin’ hard.

Another reason it took me so long to grow up was because of this area I live in. I love Sacramento, I really do. I’ve never called anywhere else home, despite living in San Luis Obispo for a year, and Chico for two [college]. It’s a great place to raise a family, and once you do finally grow up, it’s a pretty safe and comfortable place to settle down. BUT, that said, there are a LOT of people my age in this area who have absolutely no desire to better themselves or to get ahead in this world. Like, way too many. Most people my age are comfortable with their job as a club promoter, bartender, server or cocktail server somewhere in downtown Sac. They are easy jobs and they lend so well to the party lifestyle. I’ll be honest, I totally understand the appeal of going out to the clubs every night, and going out boating with friends every weekend. I lived that life for many years! But I got over it. I eventually got burnt out on the whole same-thing-different-year lifestyle. The thing that blows my mind is that people are STILL living that life. People well into their thirties and even forties continue to act like they are 21. I know there are people in every city and every town who fall into this category, but the amount of people in Sacramento who are definitely too old to be living the way they do is a tad bit scary. And these people are reproducing – even worse.

I’m not saying that we all shouldn’t have fun every once in a while. We definitely should, but while acting our age. We should also want better lives for ourselves. Let’s take San Francisco, for example. YES – it’s totally a party city. There are lots of clubs and bars and a huge nightlife. BUT, everybody who can afford that lifestyle is either in school and working, or has a great career that pays handsomely. People are motivated, and while they do live a bit of that Peter Pan lifestyle, they also all actually want to settle down. AND, most SF residents have roommates. So you’re never really totally alone. You’re already accustomed to sharing a home and a life with somebody.

It may have taken me a while to purge myself of my party mode, but I guess it’s better late than never. I do not in any way regret my twenties and the decisions I made – everything I’ve done and everyone that I’ve met to this point in my life has shaped who I am in some way. That said, I’m also happy to be done with that chapter of my life, LOL. The party life is definitely not for me. I’m happiest when I’m cuddled on the couch at home with a glass of wine, my fiancé and Miss Bella. Cheers to that!

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Beer Thirty.

It’s finally FRIDAY! (Insert emoji with gigantic toothy smile here). All over our social networks, people are hashtagging #TGIF, and making plans for the upcoming evening. And as long as you’re of legal age (or at least have a fake ID), you pretty much KNOW that you’ll be finding yourself at a bar somewhere.

Okay, so we’ve determined that you’re not spending Friday night at home on your couch catching up on Law & Order: SVU. Now the question is, where are you going?

When I was 18-21, my weekend nights found me gussied up from head-to-toe in a booth at a club somewhere in downtown Sacramento.

VOMIT.

For those of you who think this is still enjoyable in the backside of your twenties or in your early thirties, I applaud you.

As I near the beginning of the fourth decade of my young life, I’m finding enjoyment in simpler, less complicated places (this does not mean at home on my couch, however, the idea becomes more and more appealing with every passing weekend). No, my Friday nights generally find me at a dive bar somewhere rocking yoga pants and a zip-up hoodie.

Yeah. Now I bet you’re wondering why you’re still spending hundreds of dollars on miniskirts and heels and putting in so much work on your face and hair when people like me are doing the exact opposite. Return those new shoes you bought and put that $100 toward something more reasonable, like a cab ride from the bar that’s just right down the street.

So aside from the lack of dress code enforcement at the local bars, what else sets them apart from a night club? Maybe you like getting dressed up every weekend. (If you have to get dressed up for work every day, then you probably feel my pain and understand why casual attire is so necessary on weekends). If this is the case, ask yourself – how much am I spending on drinks (and, probably, drugs, since popping molly at the club seems to be #trendingnow)?

The answer is: WAY TOO MUCH. The bar down the street not only offers cheap drinks (and has ’round the clock drink specials), but there isn’t a ridiculous pressure to be high on drugs whilst conversing with your peers.

Another plus – the people that don’t put any effort into their appearance are REAL. They don’t put on a front to impress others. We are all there for one common reason: to let loose and have fun. We are over the point in our lives where we think we are going to meet Mr.- or Mrs. Right at a bar. Not to mention, we realized it’s completely EXHAUSTING to get so thoroughly ready every weekend. And, for that matter, why try and look cute when you know you’re just going to get retardedly drunk and end up looking haggard? Might as well start the night as a slob if you’re going to end it as one.

All this casual bar talk has get me craving an ice cold brewski. It’s five o’clock somewhere, right?