Bummed At 30

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Man, these young people. What is wrong with them? Back in ancient times, we had fake draft cards and birth certificates. Kids now are trying to get fake AARP cards. They feel old and are going to retreats to deal with it.       

“What can death teach me about life?” and “What are the unexpected pleasures of aging?” Not surprisingly, these deep thoughts are not mine. They are actually sections in a bookshelf at a resort called the Modern Elder Academy.

I hate when you can’t tell if you’re having your leg pulled. Pause. What the hell does pulling a leg have to do with faking me out? But I digress.

The Modern Elder Academy, according to various press profiles, caters to the over-the-hill gang, mostly in the tech field. And over-the-hill means 30-year-olds and up. Apparently, being a tech wiz is a short-term thing. You reach 30 and your coworkers are looking at you like, what are you doing here? You were born in the 1980s? Ew, gross.

The new kids on the block, Generation Z, are making millennials feel invisible and moldy.

I don’t know a Gen X from a Gen Y never mind a Gen Z but it appears that some young people don’t like other young people at all. The 30-somethings are in the crosshairs. Most of these newly decrepit 30-somethings have made big bucks in tech but are now made to feel like moth balls. Some millennials embrace this. Some young dudes dye their hair gray and only listen to Springsteen. Others need the Academy.

The Academy offers suffering 30-somethings coping workshops, salt-air yoga and access to a shaman. Which is all fine and good but what they really want is guidance from actual old people, true elders. Yes, the true elders who became invisible long ago, who wake up at 5 a.m., after getting up three times during the night for bathroom trips.  If you’re reading this, probably someone like you. It’s nice to be needed, isn’t it?

The crusty old 30-somethings want to pick the brains of people who have injured themselves in their sleep. They want wisdom from people who look forward to a dull evening.

They know there’s a lot to learn from people who call the phone company to talk about fees.

“What are the unexpected pleasures of aging?” the depressed 30-year-olds ask. The beauty of the three  o’clock happy hour, of course. There are other things, but we forget what they are.

The mid-life crisis occurring at younger and younger ages only means the competition for spots in the Modern Elder Academy will be tougher to come by. Oh yeah, you have to apply and the leader of the place, a self-described, “social alchemist, disruptor, sage,” says, “It is a competitive process to be accepted.” 

And you know what that means. Rich parents of 30-year-olds will start bribing admissions officers to get their depressed, antique kids into the Academy. The scandal will follow. The kids weren’t depressed at all, the parents just wanted them out of the basement.

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