Five days from now, I’ll be turning twenty five. So I’m two decades and a half, quarter of a century old. I don’t particularly feel anything above ordinary, except that I’m quite excited baking my perfect lasagna on that day. I have already informed my bosses at work that I’ll take a week-long hiatus beginning the 29th, a Monday, so that means I’ll soak up more sun, inhale some traffic fumes, and maybe even drop by the nearest beach for some salty air during the seven straight days that I’m home. It’s been raining almost everyday here in the mountains, and traffic has never been a problem in this quiet city. So I’m expecting to get a bit sunburned back in the city of golden friendship, though I really have no laid-out plans yet, because the crazy sun just seeks me out whenever and wherever, and gives me annoying prickly rashes even when I’m hiding under the bed in my room.
An idea has just occurred to me moments ago, and I am now planning to do at least one thing that I have not done yet in my entire quarter of a century existence, on my birthday. Well, the list could go on infinitely, and can range from the sensible to the hilarious, and from nonsensical to downright bloodcurdling (I can perhaps pretend I was blind and cross a highway without opening my eyes, which actually translates to suicide, or I can yank the hair of some annoying preschooler, or even bake oatmeal cookies for those exasperating rascals at Mc Arthur park). I have not yet decided what, but I want to try doing something that, ahem, I can be proud of. Maybe spend my birthday money buying someone else a gift (imagine- surprise, surprise!), or wake up really early and watch the cheesy sunrise on a deserted stretch of beach, attend the first early-morning Mass at the cathedral, or perhaps get idiotically drunk for the first time in my life, until I vomit on someone else’s lap. Now, the last idea doesn’t sound near like it’s something I can actually be proud of but I never ever allowed myself to get drunk in the past— I usually stop drinking when I feel like my head is already weighing tons— and the thought of allowing myself that bit of unrestrained craziness on my special day feels liberating, and dangerously fun (my advance apologies to whoever gets to relish my drunken puke).
There is one thing however, one thing that I can be proud of sharing, and that is before my twenty-fifth birthday, I finally stopped being a chronic pessimist. Now, I am not certain if this is bound to stay, or if it’s just something of an erratic nature, but for these past weeks, I did not fear nor doubt the workings of this twisted universe as much as I used to my entire life. Something must have rearranged in my system, or possibly my pessimistic atoms got tired of the entire drama overload, that they ultimately succumbed to the enticements of the bullish ones. These days, worries do not bother me because I have arrived at the conclusion that so long as an individual has done his finest, has stretched his limits to indefinable degrees, has stayed honest and humble, works hard and smart, and prays without ceasing then nothing in the cosmos can stop good karma from favoring him. And in the event that the good karma turns the other way, it eventually changes course in due time, and favors the person all the same. The biggest secret of the universe is that it plays jokes on mortals all the time, twisted jokes mostly, and those who laugh the loudest even when their hearts are torn into tiny splinters always, always gets the biggest rewards. I had to get to the year and the month that I turn twenty-five before I finally understood all of this.
The demigods can laugh, dance, and sleep in silken sheets all they want. At twenty-five, I never got to realize the most feral of my dreams, like earning my first million, writing my first book, having my first book published, getting married in an old castle. Heck, I still do not even have a stable job yet, nor do I have the vaguest of ideas on what I want to do with my life if things get even crazier. But I have myself; I still have my unfinished book, I have pages that need a lot of ink, and I have people who think I’m nuts, but incredibly smart witty, and pretty. If I don’t get to do all these before I turn thirty, I still have an entire lifetime ahead, albeit one with more wrinkles, and worse back pains.
Which reminds me; I have to stock up on more bottles of moisturizer these coming years. Tonight I’ll slather on more than the usual, and have my haircut and salon treatment on my big day. There are just so many things worth celebrating, however twisted and however caustic these jokes are.