Greetings, SFTEs and SFTE-adjacents! I imagine you've gotten used to the acronym by now. In case you haven't, here's a little refresher: It stands for San Francisco Twenty-something Experience, and I invented it two weeks ago as I discussed the tendency of SFTs not to STFU about their years and years of supposed life experience. I also found the city itself at least partially responsible for these frequent trips down memory lane. But I think there's more to it than that, so I'd like to pose a question to all the SFTs out there: Have you ever wanted to be older?
I don't mean in the "I have my license. Why do I need to wait six months to drive other people around?" way or the "I'm taller and stronger than all these T-ball hacks. Why can't I play with the big kids?" way or the "How soon is menopause? I hate buying tampons." way. I'm talking about a very specific, chronic, SFT sentiment. I've heard many SFTs claim that they wanted to in their 30's already, and I haven't the slightest idea why.
This decade might be the best one. I'm not sure yet, because I've only experienced half of it and the two before it, and much of those memories are lost because who remembers being a baby and doesn't everyone want to forget middle school? But I'm going to go out on a limb and say that anyone older than 29 has a lot of good memories associated with their TE. Many TE-adjacents probably wish they were still a T, as is evidenced by a lot of the fashion choices I've seen of late. (No judgement. Ha, kidding. I have to judge a little.) But who can blame them? T's are still young enough to get away with clubbing, we're not socially pressured to settle down just yet, we have fast metabolisms, we look great in most clothes, we aren't too jaded by our jobs, we can operate most pieces of technology based on instinct and, if we're lucky, we have a solid education immediately behind us. We're essentially brimming with potential, and many of us are even starting to make good on that potential, national economy be damned. This truly is our time. Why waste these tantalizing ten years thinking about the next ten? San Francisco is calling!
Of course, it could come down to finances, which is understandable. Living in SF -- home of the $400-per-month parking space -- isn't easy, especially on a T budget and in this (previously damned) economy. The thirtysomething income, and the comfortable lifestyle that comes along with it, is certainly a nice image to keep in the back of your mind. It could also come down to the frustrating dating scene.
SF gives off a very couple-y, settled-down vibe at times, and T's with commitment on the brain could be getting disheartened with all the people living the California dream hand-in-hand right before their eyes. Or it might be that the SFTE forces T's to grow up fast, even if we spent our adolescence elsewhere. We're exposed to a rich, full life before we've even had time to pay off our student loans or find an apartment with a functioning intercom. We navigate steep hills, winding roads, and narrow sidewalks by several different forms of public and personal transportation; we consume organic, local, and free-trade food and drinks; and we find ourselves immersed in intimate book readings, underground comedy shows, and independent concerts.
But think of it this way, fellow SFTs: Our rapid maturity will only enhance the SFTE, and it'll make each successive decade better than the last. We just can't be 30 without being 29 first. Now would be a good time to quote Ferris Bueller, but I'll let you do that on your own.