A few months ago, I moved in with my girlfriend and her daughter and son, ages 9 and 11 respectively. These are a few things I wish they would learn:
1. A glass of wine a night does not make me an alcoholic, and it’d be great if you didn’t tell your grandmother that.
2. If you did things the first time you were told, you’d waste a lot less of your own time
3. My generation was embarrassed when our parents joined Facebook. You’ll be embarrassed when you join Facebook and find your mom has hundreds of photos of you just waiting to be tagged.
4. Adults on Disney Channel shows are portrayed as useless dolts to make you feel better. This is not representative of real life.
5. Everyone feels like a dork in middle school.
6. Justin Timberlake is a singer.
7. Will Smith is not just the father of Willow and The Karate Kid.
8. By going to church with your friend’s family, you are bowing to the peer pressure that has perpetuated centuries of religious oppression.
9. It’s not my fault you’re bored.
10. I let you win at chess.
11. School and work are not equivalent.
12. It’s racist to make fun of people’s accents.
13. That turkey, mashed potatoes, and broccoli I just made you was not a snack.
14. Your 4-year-old niece is not to be spun around like a hammer throw.
15. You would love Lord Of The Flies.
16. JK Rowling is a woman.
17. Pro wrestling is fake.
18. It is not a fun game to see how angry you can make each other.
19. The tomatoes in pizza don’t count.
20. A belt will keep your pants up.
21. If you think a karate belt is difficult, wait till clip-on ties become unacceptable.
22. Polo shirts are not for babies.
23. Pepto Bismol is not for girls.
24. An iced coffee is not a milkshake and no, you may not have one.
25. Melatonin is the best invention in modern parenting.
26. It is not okay to sing LMFAO at the top of your lungs at 6:30 a.m. (or at anytime, really).
27. Watching a walkthrough of a videogame on YouTube before you even own it ruins the whole point.
28. When watching a movie you’ve seen but I haven’t, there’s this thing called a “spoiler alert.”
29. Lady Gaga is not old.
30. “Sweet Caroline” is not a Glee original (see also: “Bust A Move,” “Leaving On A Jet Plane,” and “Don’t Stop Believin’”)
31. Your mother is the most important person in the world vis a vis your existence.
32. There’s a difference between someone being nice and someone being rich.
33. Ten minutes of spelling homework is not “a ton”.
34. “Sucks” is a useless word. It doesn’t describe anything.
35. Your life does not suck.
36. You don’t have to say, “I have a question.” Go ahead and ask the question.
37. There are 151 Pokémon. Period.
38. The cool kids in your class are trying really, really hard.
39. Your friends will change.
40. So will you.