Today we're doing something unprecedented: giving you a youthful perspective on life and living in 2017, rather than our standard fist-shaking "angry old coot with a bullhorn" perspective.
We're doing this in honor of (and with the indispensable help of) Daughter Jarlsberg, who celebrated her 30th birthday yesterday!
If you'll allow a moment of parental gushing, she's an extraordinary young woman who - among many other accomplishments - has been a National Merit Scholar, Phi Beta Kappa college graduate, Dallas Morning News editorial writer, Symphony Orchestra musician, children's book author, and is a Speech Therapist who has a special gift for working with young children.
She's also faced (and overcome) more than her share of challenges, including significant health conditions, entering the workforce during the "lost generation" of the job-killing Obama economy, and the always-frightening possibility that she could grow up as crazy as her father. Let us all give thanks for the ameliorating qualities of Mrs. Jarlsberg's calming genes and maternal guidance.
With that preamble out of the way, here are 30 Life Lessons that this freshly-minted 30-year-old has picked up along her journey so far. Let us all learn from her wisdom...
1. Nothing good ever comes from clowns.
2. Never try to blackmail a murderer.
3. Have a flashlight in every room - you never know where you're going to be when the lights go out.
4. You can microwave regular oatmeal just like instant oatmeal.
5. Someone doesn't have to be a bad person to still be bad news.
6. Understand statistics - otherwise people will lie to you with facts.
7. Understand personal finance.
8. If you're going to speed when driving, make sure someone else is going faster than you. That's who the police will pull over.
9. Driving and competitiveness should have nothing to do with each other. Let the angry speed demons pass you. My personal zen-like phrase is "be the rock in the river."
10. Life is too short for cheap, crappy toilet paper.
11. One's living space should be both tidy and expressive of your life and personality. This ensures that, when you are murdered, the forensics team and investigators will be able to get a clear picture of your circumstances and thus more likely to catch the killer.
12. Large groups of women can quickly turn into war zones about nothing.
13. There are more sociopaths in the world than you would think.
14. All Christmas lights are beautiful.
15. Prolonged self-pity is a form of narcissism.
16. There is a very tight correlation between parents who refuse to discipline their precious babies and parents that get easily, easily offended.
17. You can generally identify these parents before even meeting them by hearing the 'creative' names of their children. I'm looking at you, Camelot.
18. Even when they make you crazy, having a dog keeps you sane.
19. Stick up for people being bullied. You'll probably end up being bullied too, but no one should have to feel isolated and alone.
20. Very few people tolerate someone making a constant stream of puns. Keep them close and cherish them.
21. Ramen stops being cheap when you have to buy heartburn medicine to go with it.
22. Beware the quiet ones - they are the ones who, when pushed too hard, will lose their minds with rage. As the quiet one, I admit to relishing the look of absolute, pants-staining terror on the faces of those who didn't see it coming. I'm looking at you, jocks who threw french fries at me. ONCE.
23. Running a spoon under hot water, then placing it on a mosquito bite, will instantly stop the itching. I feel sad for all of the summers I didn't know this.
24. Compatibility with your co-workers makes up to 99% of your job satisfaction.
25. Wear comfortable, practical shoes. You never know when the zombie apocalypse will start, and trying to run in strappy stiletto heels is a recipe for disaster.
26. Don't try to hide mistakes. It just makes things harder for everyone.
27. It's nice to have your own theme song. Mine is Academic Festival Overture by Brahms.
28. Never underestimate Japan's power to screw with your mind.
29. Life doesn't owe you a thing.
30. Sometimes, when you get stuck in a routine, it feels like your life is being lived for you. Those are the times to do something a little different - it reminds you that your life is yours. So yeah, I am going to get that third ear piercing! Sorry Mom and Dad!
Good stuff, huh? Feel free to add to this list of useful life lessons - and share 30th birthday wishes - in the comments section!
Yes, good stuff. She got the funny gene from you, too.
It is ALWAYS the right time to eat ice cream!
(That's abbreviation "Happy Birthday" to Daughter Jarlsberg.
As I was reading #16, I immediately thought of #11, a la Menendez brothers. Too dark?
Anyway, Happy Friday, everyone!
Well, happy birthday to your baby, wouldn't be that age again for anything. Wouldn't mind being in the same shape as I was at 30 though (not the pregnant shape, the reasonably healthy one).
Wonderful and wise advice! As for #9, my own personal phrase is, "Fine, let HIM get the ticket." I'm always pleased to catch up at the next red light with the speeder who passed me.
Happy birthday, Daughter Jarlsberg!
Happy Belated Birthday.
What good advice.
My eldest Daughter and I played a fun game today. Describe people you know as cheese.
Is the third ear why she is a musician?
Yom Huledet Same'ach! ("Happy Birthday" in Hebrew)
Felice compleano, DJ! Cent'anni uno!
That's Italian for "Happy Birthday, DJ. May you live to be more than one hundred years!"
Stilton, her advice is wonderful, and for the ages.
WOW! What a great kid and so wise. Happy Birthday to her.
And a most Happy Birthday Daughter Jarlsberg, you have the best mentor and life's guide that is possible in this crazy world.
I can relate . . . To all of them! Happy birthday young lady!
But can she cook?
Happy Birthday, Miss Stilton! Awesome advice ... so awesome, I copied it (and no doubt, will pass some of it off as my own ... maybe.)
You and the missus done good, Stilt.
There is nothing like a daughter to point out obviously important points in life.
Happy 30th Birthday to you!
When young people have those birthdays that end in zero I think, wouldn't it be nice to be that age again and know what I know now ? A wise man once said " Bias based on knowledge and experience is called wisdom." I think it was me during once of my unwise days.
Ahh, 30! I remember it like it was only 30 years ago.
#30--You daughter has a third ear?
Happy birthday! I remember 30! It's a speck on the horizon behind me, but I do remember it...
I work at a large university in the flat part of the state where the air violates clean soil standards way too many days of the year. This is going on my office door.
They are all good! My 35 yr old daughter will relate to them. #10 is my favorite. I do a lot of sub teaching, and the business managers always go for the bottom line toilet paper. I await the day when I enter the restroom to find a stack of corn cobs next to the porcelain throne. MANY HAPPY RETURNS YOUNG LADY!!
Happy birthday to a wise young woman. You have wisdom far beyond your years and I know you will continue to do great things.
Thank you, for being part of the extended family through Stilton.
@Linda McWilliams- I'm going to assume you mean "funny" in a good way (grin).
@Noor al Haqiqa- No argument from me on that one.
@pgm1972- Not too dark. Daughter Jarlsberg has a wicked sense of humor as well as a taste for mysteries and dark tales.
@mamafrog- Life throws a lot at people my daughter's age; you pretty much HAVE to be young to put up with all of it.
@Phoebe- I have an older brother who was once keeping pace with everyone else who was speeding, saw a cop, and immediately slowed down. The cop then pulled him over and gave him a ticket. When he asked why the cop had pulled over the only person who slowed down, he said it demonstrated "awareness of guilt" (or something to that effect).
@Granny- That's a very popular game around here!
@Anonymous- No, but it's why it's so hard for her to buy glasses.
@Maoz- Toda raba!
@RP Free Speech- I'm enjoying the "birthday wishes in many languages" thing!
@Judi King- I didn't even scratch the surface of how great she is. I wanted to get straight to her list so everyone could see it for themselves!
@Fred Ciampi- That particular pedestal is way too lofty for me, and I can't emphasize enough that parenting is a team sport. I can, however, admit I've had a significant impact on our daughter's sense of humor.
@Jim Irre- Anyone who can't relate to something on the list really needs to get out more. Thanks for the birthday wishes!
@Jerome Boyle- She can!
@Bobo the Hobo- Hey, wisdom is for sharing so pass it along!
@Barbar Cat- We're definitely at the respective ages of life when I have things to learn from my daughter. I can be a lot of things, but I can't be young again or see the world through those eyes.
@F14 Driver- There is wisdom that comes with age, but it is sometimes the seemingly unwise and risky choices we make in youth that turn out the best. I'm not talking about choices like drugs, alcohol, indiscriminate sex, and crime (although it was one hell of a weekend) but rather bold choices like moving to a new city, starting a band, creating a business, or a goofy pizza cook asking a waitress for a date (yes, Mrs. J and myself).
@Geoff King- I remember the day of my daughter's birth more clearly than I remember what happened last week.
@Anonymous- Yes, and it makes her hard of earring.
@Emmentaler Limburgher- 30 is pretty far back in my rearview mirror, too. Sigh...
@Keith West- I know Daughter J will be pleased by that!
@Dave from the Cheesehead Nation- You said "bottom" line (Beavis and Butthead laugh). It's true, though - I'm a cheapskate and try to save on nearly everything, but a notable exception is toilet paper. It's my way of "going in style."
@Tots- And thank you and everyone else here for being extended family! Gee, I hope there's enough cake...
Happy Birthday DJ!
Very GOOD 'Daughter Jarlsberg'. You help to restore my faith in your generation of which I have birthed 3 members.
God bless you ALL as you take over running our country. HAPPY Birthday!!!
Great list! Happy Birthday!!
Happy Birthday Ms Jarlsberg, thanks for the list!
What a delightful list. You have truly raised a gem. My two daughters are in their 40s now and are more funny and delightful than I had a right to expect. They get the good things from their mother, but I seem to have infected them with cynicism and sarcasm. Of course everyone knows that sarcasm is a spiritual gift.
I would place #7 at the top of the list, but that's just me.
#22 is true. With age though will come the ability to be a quiet one who when pushed too hard responds with well controlled, well directed, anger.
#24 must be why I am 100% satisfied with my work. My main co-workers are Dunny my favorite saddle horse, and heeler dog Ringo.
A couple sayings I learned many years ago I would add to the list:
"Those who say the least, many times feel the most."
"There is no wrong way to be right, and no right way to be wrong."
Regarding toilet paper: OK, but when there are kids in the house also remember about "Too much of a good thing". If one needs to take a shower & change shorts; do it. Several people in the house each using a couple of yards of the soft-pack, quilted stuff may soon require a plumber to clear out the pipe. Or just add:
"Know when to double-flush." Happy Birthday, D.J. Excellent list.
Wisdom beyond your years. Great stuff, indeed! Happy Birthday, daughter Jarlsberg.
P.S.: None of my beeswax, but......another hole in your ear benefits who, what where when or why?
Great advice. I regret to say that it took me far longer than 30 years to learn some of those lessons. Happy Birthday, Daughter Jarlsberg!!
Absolutely love the list! Well done Daughter Jarlsberg. Wishing you a wonderful year ahead. May you continue to gain more wisdom, and may your sense of humor continue to grow as well.
Happy Birthday, you compiled a great list !
You can pour instant oatmeal right into your mouth followed by a mouthful of coffee swirl it around and swallow it. It's called the human microwave.
Your Dad's friend,
Great, fun list Daughter J. Happy Birthday!!
It's lovely to see you have a bright, intelligent daughter who seems to be worldly beyond her years. I also have such a daughter and a son, both in their forties, who have blessed me with four grandchildren who I love beyond belief. Getting old sucks but having my wonderful family makes it all worthwhile. Happy birthday, Daughter J.
I'm making #15 into a poster for my 12-step meeting!! Love it!
She had me at "Academic Festival Overture".
Happy Birthday, Daughter Jarlsberg!
What a brilliant young lady who will go anywhere her desires take her. Happy Birthday! Wisdom of this magnitude at the young age of 30 is rare these days. So many young people, who should be out in the world making their own way, are still living in mommy's basement and playing video games. Becoming a well-educated person and living the life you should is a goal everyone should aspire to. Young Miss Jarlsberg is far and above the highest average of today's young folks. Gosh, I sound like my grandmother. I guess she knew a thing or two. Sounds like your daughter has learned more than a thing or two. (Sounding like insurance commercial not intended.)
April 28, 2017 at
Happy Birthday Daughter Jarlsberg! Your father is obviously very proud of you as he makes you sound like one of those people who has done more by 9am than I get done all day. (Considering how easily distracted I am these days, that's almost certainly true)
I can only imagine what it's like coming of age as part of Obama's "lost generation". I came of age during Reagan's "Morning in America", where anyone with the least bit of initiative could find or create opportunity as easily as falling off a log. But the great thing about America is that it's still possible to find or create opportunity if have initiative, even though the Progressives would prefer you just not try and instead just settle into one of their designated victim classes and pine for the handouts.
Your personal victory is a victory for the America we love. It's a credit to you and your parents. Unfortunately, we can't help with the inherited crazy genes, though. Good luck.
Heartiest congratulations on attaining The Big Three-Oh relatively unscathed! At 75 I've had time to learn to appreciate good advice. A couple of jems from Alfred E. Neuman (ask your dad) have served me well over the years. "Most people would rather die than think and, in fact, they do." and "I hasten to laugh at everything ere I be forced to cry."
And many, many more, Stiltonsdotter! I wish my 39 year old son and 43 year old daughter had your level of maturity and sense of humor!
Number 11 is a bit warped, isn't it? Then again, it sort of reminds me of my mother's reason for wearing clean underwear. "You could be in a car wreck, you know."
Hippo birdie two ewe,
Hippo birdie two ewe.
Hippo birdie deer ewe,
Hippo birdie two ewe!
... and many more.
Happy birthday, Daughter Jarlsberg!
On my 30th birthday I was just starting out. One friend gave me a tube of BenGay Arthritis Formula, a better friend gave me a bottle of Bacardi Rum and a cube of butter. They could of saved me a lot of grief if they had provided me your list.
A very wise woman you are.
Always read Johnny Optimism.
1. Nothing good ever comes from clowns.
Excellent observations, young one. Add this (and go look up the clip on YouTube):
Young Kwai Chang Caine:
“Old Man, how is it that you hear these things?”
“Young Man, how is it that you do not?”
20. I'm looking at you, Dad.
Awesome daughter!! Right up there with my three, which is saying a LOT! :) So, what's the name of your book?
Happy birthday, peer of my New York brood. May my now-Texas offspring someday cross paths with you.
My addition: Agree on blanket rules about stuff management with your significant others and then abide by them instead of getting mad. One of ours is "All things shall be left in the position or setting the last user used. If you don't like that position or setting, change it." This applies to everything from toilet and car seats to toaster and thermostat settings. It saves a lot of bickering.
Happy birthday young lady, and many more to come.
#31 - If life gives you lemons, buy some Tequila.
Your daughter is a smart young lady; congratulations on raising such a daughter! I think she will be most successful in life; she knows how to make that happen! And Happy Birthday to her, too!
I'll add one more to her list. Be kind to everyone, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet. World is getting to be a dangerous place.
Happy 30th Birthdays Little One. All my kids are above 38 (only the youngest is 38) The other three are in their 40's! I won't say how old as my only daughter is the eldest & You of course know how daughters feel about parents who disclose their ages. Hah!
You might want to add:
Never sword-fight with Zorro
Don't piss in the wind (actually for Boys only)
Don't step on Superman's cape
Never try to pull the mask off the Lone Ranger
Tonto means dumb in Spanish
Kimosabe is NOT a term of endearment
Never date guys with station wagons; those are just Motels on wheels
Submarine racing is NOT a sport & does NOT exist anyway Therefore don't go
One of these days, if we ever get a chance to sit down and chew the fat, I got a a story about #10.
Consider adding this mantra to your list:
"Ignorance can be cured by education and experience. Stupid is forever."
(Repeated often, it can help greatly in self appraisal, and in dealing with the public.)
Life isn't measured by the number of breaths we take, but by those moments that take our breath away!
Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.
"Money is congealed life"...
I just had my 68th b-day, and haven't gathered as much wisdom as you denoted. God bless you and your parents. I sure enjoy their work and yours.
Late to the party, sorry.
Most joyous returns to you Ms J, and your third ear!
In Re #10 - in the dorm, the 'government issue' TP was affectionately known as
John Wayne grade - Rough, Tough, and don't take any crap off any body....
Ah... the memories...
Belated happy birthday from a fellow National Merit Scholar and SLP. Haven't been a newspaper editorial writer, but, even though I'm twice your age, it's never too late!
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