It’s not easy being a kid. Do you know how I can tell? There is always a lot of crying in a kid’s world. Sure they are crying over kid stuff but it is as important to them as our grown-up stuff is to us. Maybe more so. We have the freedom to make our own decisions. Kids don’t. A lot of times their only recourse is feeling bad.

If you saw a grown-up cry as much as a kid does you’d say, “There goes one sad person”. A lot of times kids’ tears aren’t real. They’re just for show so they can get something out of someone but a grown-up’s tears are often used for the same purpose. No difference there. Kids may use the tactic a little more frequently but the genuine crying is more often also. There’s just a lot of crying going on.

One incident made me flash back to my own youth and a feeling only a child can have. A couple of years ago I was at a BBQ with friends on a nice sunny day. The kids were all running around the yard and having a good time. Then it was time to leave. The first child who’s turn it was to leave just started crying. He didn’t want to go. He was having fun. That is such a childhood feeling. You’re playing and having a great time and then mom or dad say it’s time to go. What? Staying equals fun. Going equals no fun. It doesn’t even matter where you are going and if there might be fun there too because there if fun here and now. A child understands a bird in the hand better than an adult. But you gotta go and all you can do is cry over the lost fun. Fun is always at a premium. I remember it well. It’s not easy being a kid.

Everyone says that being an adolescent and going through puberty is hard but I didn’t have a really hard time with that. Maybe because I still have all the same problems and have just grown used to them. I, like most, couldn’t talk to girls as a teenager because who knew what to say? It was paralyzing and frightful and meant that I wasn’t one of the cool kids but I didn’t like the cool kids. They were jerks. I never wanted to be like them. It’s less of a problem not being cool when cool and you are enemies.

I had nothing going on as an adolescent and that is the key to talking to girls: convincing them you have something going on. You don’t actually need anything going on just the appearance is fine. Girls appreciate the effort and don’t mind being lied to in a good cause. At least until they grow up then they get a little more pissed off. By the way, the best thing to have going on is money. It’s pretty obvious but still doesn’t get mentioned so much because we love our illusions of romance.

Just like my fifteen year old self I still don’t have much going on. It’s just that now I know what to say to girls. Yet, it is too Pavlovian for me and I find that paralyzing and frightful too. I don’t like dancing on the strings of social roles. So I prefer to say the wrong things to amuse myself. It makes me giggle. It doesn’t do much for my romantic life though.

I seem to have avoided most grown-up problems. By grown-up problems I don’t mean health, financial, or dealing with sudden death problems. These suck at any age and aren’t related to how old you are. I see grown-up problems as twofold: kids and marriage.

With kids the problem isn’t always a specific one. It’s a general one. I think it can be summed up by one phrase, “What the hell do I do now?” Yes, that is what a parent says to himself when he realizes that he is now responsible for a life that he just made. And the kid didn’t come with an instruction manual. It’s up to the parent to figure out everything that is right for this kid. That is a lot of figuring and there are plenty of times when you don’t know if you’re getting through at all. Oh, and you have to not kill the kid in the process. This is very important. Being that I have no children I missed out on this problem.

The second adult worry is how not to strangle your spouse. I think this is harder for married couples with no kids because kids can spread out some of that strangling impulse. It’s not all directed at the spouse. The more often you have to remind yourself not to strangle someone the more likely you are to remember it. At least that is my hypothesis.

You’ve married this person and now you have to be with them every morning and night for the rest of your life. Once again there is no instruction manual. You have to learn how to lead a full rich life and not make out with other women who are perfectly willing to. I recommend to all you guys that you pretend like you have nothing going on. That is hard to do because guys are so used to doing the opposite but you have to try. At least there is no crying going on.

Crying. Yeah, it’s not easy being a kid.