In my day, we used a Sears Roebuck catalogue in the outhouse…

Once upon a time, when the guy I was dating moved into his first apartment, I bought him groceries as a house-warming gift. I found a little card that said something like, “Congratulations on your new place! Have fun paying money for things like toilet paper.” I propped the card up on a 4-pack of toilet paper and left it on his bed before I went to work.

I think it’s still the best description of adult life I’ve ever heard: have fun paying for things like toilet paper. When you’re seven, and people ask you what you want your life to be when you grow up, you talk about the palace or the Italian villa or the underwater spy headquarters you’ll have – not how often you’ll need to buy fabric softener or your brilliant plan to turn Ramen noodles into a healthy meal. Adult life is messy, and it’s meticulous, and most of the time it feels very far away from anything resembling progress.

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