Being 30


So I turned 30 today. (24th march 2015)Technically yesterday since you are going to be reading this today, but I was writing this yesterday of today, so this blog isn’t wrong and you aren’t wrong. So sweet and funny. Nice way to start, but then, most of everything from now will be cranky. Because as much as the universe will tell you, that it’s just another day, fuck it’s not. 30 is big. It’s 10 years older than 29. Your age now starts with a ‘3’, and that’s troubling.

It’s that mythical age, which you knew you would one day get to it, but could never actually comprehend reaching it. And now you have reached it and all of this starts playing in your head. Because It’s that age you always thought those really old cousins of yours’ would be, not you. And then you realize you are now at that age and you are now that really old cousin. Also, you are now closer to the big 4-0, than the smaller 2-0. Shit. Not helping.

Now 30 is also quite a curious age. Since all your friends are also 30 or almost 30, you’ll see them in absolutely different shapes and sizes and lives. This normally doesn’t happen with any other decade number. There’ll be a friend still living in with a bunch of 22-year olds, there will be that guy who’s just fully quit at this point, another dropping his kids to school, a couple of people still searching for the perfect break, most fully suited everyday thinking they now have a career and not a job, a soul searcher who acts mature-r than mature. Yet another who’s become a hippie and has it totally figured about what she wants from life. And then that investment banker who thinks he’s gods gift to the world. Oh, I forgot about that 30 year old single guy. The one who just can’t find miss right, as much as he tries, and then his mother just keeps setting him up on dates. (and the 30 year old single girl who’s doing great in her career, but who’s beginning to give up on love, thinking she’ll probably just remain single always)

Anyways, ill tell you how a typical 30th birthday happens, basis my experience, because it was pretty typical.

  1. When the clock strikes 12, you have most of your unmarried friends over, since they are the only ones who would still come at 12. Irrespective, you have cake, drink beer, laugh a lot, talk a little economics and then some philosophy about all of us ageing and what it means and then you sleep. Good beginning to just another day. (but it’s not)
  2. You get up with lots of phone calls and a bad hangover. Calls mostly from your first degree friends and relatives. Married friends wonder when you will get married. And relatives wonder when you will get married. Unmarried friends are just plain relieved you are not married. You talk about 30 being just a number.
  3. Oh, in between the extended family calls. It’s the big birthday. And I am still not married. They border on thinking if I am border-line gay. And so now I have a parallel story playing in my head. I am unsure about why everyone who knows me is trying to figure out “what the problem is”. The head appreciates all the unsolicited support, but also keeps wondering if it would be greater if everyone stopped thinking there was a problem. Because there isn’t any. I’m just not getting the right life-partner. And I can wait.
  4. So with them done, we come to the others, those that immediately after wishing, ask what special I am doing on my birthday, also since it’s the big 30. When I don’t show as much excitement as they expected, they tell me I must have a wicked day and then they make those breaking-the-ice sympathetic random statements like 30 is the new 20. That’s quite a shitty thing to hear. Because 20 is 20, 30 is not 20. Also, 40 is 40 and not 30.
  5. For lunch I meet my school friends, who I anyways would have met a day here or there. We go out for a slightly better lunch, and then spend an hour extra, watching the world-cup cricket match. All of us take an extended break from the regular Tuesday schedule. Fun.
  6. Somewhere between lunch and dinner, I start having crazy thoughts where I suddenly start feeling I have become a decade older.
  7. I don’t know how u think about these things, but my mum was about 32 when she first dropped me off at my boarding school. And she was so grown up and old then. Which means I am old now. Which is strange, coz she doesn’t seem any older to me now than she did back then. She seems to be the same age. Which means I’m the only one growing in my family. Fuck.
  8. Then I start thinking about random peculiar things. Things like when kids now call me ‘Sir’ I can’t tell them that I am still 20-something, so not to do that. 29 felt so good because I could use that statement.
  9. For dinner I go out with the mom and the dad. To pizza hut. With discount vouchers. Yes, for 3 adults of the same family that’s as good a choice as any. Both things.
  10. I come back from the dinner, and this is when the best friends start calling again. Asking how the day went. Then we talk about regular things, just like any other day. Yup, perfect the day went.

30 is peculiar in other ways too. A 29 year old sidharth could still get along with the 20 year sidharth, but the 30 year old just cannot. The 30-year-old-adult finds him annoying, loud, senseless and stupid. But he’s also jealous of him. 

Hell, since I’m now obviously also a lot wiser than most of you 20-somethings, ill advise you on a lot of stuff. We’ll start with how to accept the 30 year milestone. (Because if you are not at-least a little reluctant to move from 29 to 30, then that means you did something pretty wrong with the last decade of your life. And because we can’t keep bitching)

  1. Medical advances are getting better and mostly everyone is living longer. So we’ve got more time to do fun non-core stuff, provided random things like falling-off-a-building-and-you-die don’t happen in your life.
  2. Think about how you could do with a dirty bathroom when you were 20, but not now. You will like your present self even more and have a reason to look forward to future self.
  3. You are no longer the intern or new hire. Ur not someone in between either. You are actually the guy who will train these trainees/students/interns. And that will feel pretty cool.
  4. There’s not a hormonal overdose happening like it did 10 years ago. Today, a good conversation is as good as most other things life can offer.
  5. Guys get better looking as they get older. Girls, get ready to get hotter guys.
  6. 20’s were too much of an exploring of your own self. Creativity, inner world, purpose, ideas. 30’s should be more to just sit back, chill, relax and have good wine.
  7. The friends who’ve stuck around are actually the friends. And with new friends you know what exactly you want. So no wasting time and effort.
  8. You can date older and younger. Neither will you look like a toy-boy, nor like a cradle snatcher.
  9. You actually get mom and dad, and can relate to them.
  10. You still have 10 years until you are 40.

The young are slaves to dreams. The old servants of regret. Only the middle aged have all their five senses in the keeping of their wits. – Hervey Allen