I fucking love birthdays. I don’t just mean mine, either. I look forward to my best friends’, my regular friends’, my sorority sisters’, my coworkers’, my dog’s, my boyfriend’s, and celebrities’ birthdays. The list could honestly go on forever, but I’m going to spare you the agony because this is not Forrest Gump. There is no better feeling than making someone feel special and showering him or her with treats, love, embarrassing social media posts, presents, glitter, and obviously alcohol.
In college, we have some pretty monumental birthdays.
Your Nineteenth Birthday: Finally, you’re not a stupid eighteen-year-old anymore. You are so much wiser, mature, and unexcited that you can buy cigarettes or gamble — that was so last year. People (boys) don’t automatically assume you’re a freshman, even though you are. On the flip side, you can still get away with anything, because you’re still a “teenager.” Bitch.
Your Twentieth Birthday: Congrats, you beat teen pregnancy! Everyone says your twenties are the greatest years of your life, and you have finally entered the decade of fun, flirtation, and fabulousness. Even though you are counting down the days until your twenty-first birthday, you still get to enjoy your heightened status of being a twenty-something and wave goodbye to your teenage (dream) years.
Your Twenty-First Birthday: This is the best fucking birthday in the books. It is your time to shine. You can throw out, pass down, or, if you’re a businesswoman, sell “Taylor,” the twenty-four-year-old from Buffalo, to a younger friend, because you are now the official owner of a horizontal ID. You no longer fear going up to the cash register with your four bottles of vino because you are undeniable. “Hi Mr. Bouncer, you want to see a second form? Here, let me throw all my credit cards, my student ID, and my pool pass from 2008 at you so you know it’s real.” *flips hair and gives a condescending smile while walking toward the bar*
There are also a lot of rituals that come with turning twenty-one. For my twenty-first, I got a shot book. Each friend who made a page bought me a shot, and then I signed her designated page and got a tally mark on my arm once I took it. The goal was to take twenty-one shots and get twenty-one tallies. I woke up with twenty-one tallies, but I think I made it to fifteen before the only words I could utter were “pizza” and “bathroom.” Even though I don’t remember most of the night, I was told it was a blast. I’d chalk that up as my best birthday ever.
Your Twenty-Second Birthday: This is the worst fucking birthday. It’s all downhill from here. You are officially considered a fossil. Any and every birthday wish starts with, “Are you feeling twenty-two?” Fuck you. No, I’m not. I was twenty-one yesterday and I still feel twenty-one, so please shut the fuck up. Twenty-two is the year you are expected to graduate, get cut off from the money tree you so lovingly call Mom and Dad, leave your college town, become a functioning adult in the workforce, and, worst of all, start paying off your school loans. It seriously doesn’t get more depressing than that. Even if you take a victory lap and end up in your fifth or sixth year of college, the suckery that is twenty-two still applies. People will start to question what you are doing with your life. They whisper that you need to grow up behind your back, and they get creeped out that you still hang out at frat parties with eighteen-year-olds fetuses.
This past weekend, I turned twenty-two. I can tell you that it was more depressing than exciting. I am an optimist to the point of delusion, so there is no need to take these words with a grain of salt. This is real and raw.
At this point, you’re probably thinking, “What the fuck is the point of this article? To depress me to the point of no return?” Put down the bottle, because I have devised a plan to combat any bad feels that come with getting older. Instead of celebrating your twenty-second birthday, celebrate the first anniversary of your twenty-first birthday. This plan can last as long as you’d like. Instead of turning thirty, you can celebrate the ninth anniversary of your twenty-first birthday.
This celebration will commemorate the one-of-a-kind bond you and alcohol share. It is a love story that melts even the coldest hearts. If registering at liquor stores isn’t a thing, it will be soon with the boom of these “anniversary” celebrations. Before your twenty-second birthday, make sure to compare and shop at top liquor stores to pick the perfect place to register. Don’t leave out any category and register for your favorite vodka, tequila, rum, whiskey, and wine. Don’t be shy — let your friends know where you registered so they know exactly what to get you. Also, make it known that no one will be permitted to play or request 22 by Taylor Swift, as this person will immediately be escorted from the premises if he or she does..