Uncle Geoff celebrated a birthday last Thursday. Had a great time, he really did. Wonderful. Know what he did on Sunday? Made biscuits.
It’s alarmingly easy – biscuit-making – with only five ingredients; Uncle Geoff enjoyed them covered in honey with his roommate, Kate.
The biscuits were covered in honey. The biscuits! Not Uncle Geoff and his roommate. How could you even suggest that?! Nothing gives you that right.
Getting back to the point, the biscuit-making made Uncle Geoff think about getting older. Biscuit-making seems like something Uncle Geoff’s parents would do for grins on a Sunday (after all, he learned how from his dad on a Sunday). Uncle Geoff’s not sure if he’s ready to self-compare to the parents.
Then, Uncle Geoff was at work on Monday morning, making posters and having a conversation with a co-worker about the weekend.
Uncle Geoff said, “I had a birthday.”
Co-worker said, “Oh. How old are you now?”
Uncle Geoff said, “23.”
Co-worker said, “Oh. (pause – looking a little confused) How come you’re 23 and still in college?”
She then told me that she’ll probably graduate college in three years and she’s thinking about going to Prague for a while.
Prague for a while?! Uncle Geoff felt bad about himself for a minute – Uncle Geoff’s time to study abroad has passed him by.
Did I mention I’ve been referring to myself recently in the third person, as “Uncle Geoff”? There’s no particular reason for it; just something Uncle Geoff’s been doing for laughs. Uncle Geoff’s OK with weirding people out. I’ll be referring to myself as both “Uncle Geoff” and “I” – just enough that it’s a little confusing.
But I digress. It should be said that, though Uncle Geoff felt bad about himself for a second, he realizes he’s not old by any means. Twenty-three is probably just about the April of his life – January was ages 0-7; February 8-14; March 15-21; and so on – assuming Uncle Geoff will live to be 84 (That being late December).
Anyway, yes. April. Uncle Geoff is still in the early-going. And he’s not the kind of guy who laments about the aging process. Really, Uncle Geoff is the guy who is not having it when people worry and complain about the aging process.
When a friend of Uncle Geoff’s turned 23 a few months ago, she said, “I’m so old! What will I do?!”
I told her, “You’re not old. It’s only early-to-mid April for us. And anyway, it’s not like you can stop it.”
Uncle Geoff may be nearing a time when it’s “no longer socially acceptable to drink beer in the shower.” He may be entering an “epoch” in his life when it is considered “uncouth to sleep in until he has class at 12:30.”
But Uncle Geoff has a theory, and it’s that a person is not truly old until she or he watches “Sit and Be Fit,” not because it’s kind of funny, but because it is necessary.
Everybody’s got to stop being a college student eventually. That time will come for Uncle Geoff in about two months. There will be good things (more buttery-crumbly biscuits) and bad (no more beer in the shower). Everything is that way – with a mix of good things and things not so good.
And really, Uncle Geoff will welcome a new time – a new era – with back pain, male-pattern baldness, a sense of purpose – May, June, and so on. Oh, and biscuit-making. Lots of biscuit making.
Geoff Johnson is a senior English major. His column appears Tuesdays in the Collegian. Replies and feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.