As I’ve gotten older, I’ve slowly started to notice a decline in our education. Things I was taught growing up that were “normal” are no longer even looked at as important. Perhaps there are some benefits, kids these days are definitely more persuaded to pursue… recreational activities… than academic study and self-improvement.
I wouldn’t say its been a rapid decline but in our society today I’ve certainly noticed the plumet of responsible adulthood.
So, to express my frustration, I’ve compiled a list of things that I learned in my youth that have help lead to my success not only as a person and member of society but also my strength as an independent adult.
#1. How To Cook
No, no, I don’t mean how to use a microwave, or how to pull out your phone and order from Uber-Eats. No, I don’t just “follow the instructions on a box”. No! I actually know how to cook. In fact, as part of my life-lessons class which was required for everyone in nineth and tenth grade (now it is called “home economics” and it is an OPTIONAL course), we had to learn to cook from scratch. For you idiots, cooking from scratching means the ability to take raw ingredients and make them into a flavorful and healthy meal. Not only was this a required course for those soon to become adults, but my mother was dutiful from an early age in teaching me how to cut onions properly, how to peal potatoes, how to coupon-shop and what brands/companies were best to buy from. To this day, I still use the same spaghetti sauce brand that my mother used when I was a young girl because I know its healthy and low in sodium (for you idiots, “sodium” is salt content that in great quantities causes obesity). However! I also know how to make my own spaghetti sauce from scratch! Tomatoes, a bit of garlic, salt and pepper, oregano etc. (oregano is a spice, you dim wit, not the excuse you give your mother for that bag of green in your room). This skill is so rare that when I invite mudbloods over they are so impressed they thought I watched a YouTube video. No, I don’t need some amateur’s advice on what to put into a pot. I can come up with ideas for meals simply based on my tastes and desires to eat healthy. Sad to say, this isn’t just a failure of our educational system, it’s a failure for those stupid feminist mothers as well. Just another way feminism has ruined our society.
#2. How To Balance a Check Book/Keep a Budget/Paying Taxes & Bills
Oh how I could write an entire dissertation on why so many “kids” between the ages of 20-29 are still living at home with their parents and have never owned their own car…or well, anything! No, its not because of their privilege that daddy pays for everything or their privilege who live on welfare and disability when they have no right to do so. It is simply because kids these days think money literally grows on trees and they are entitled to it as much as they seem entitled to get their Starbucks order correct. So, I’ll give you a double shot of espresso and two pumps of stupid, stupid. Balancing a check book was what we had before electronic bank statements and bank-APPS. I was taught that unless you can physically see the cash in your hand, then don’t spend it. I admit that I take advantage of my bank having an APP, it is a convenience to be able to check my account at a glance. However, convenience is no excuse for debt and laziness. I was 9 years old the first time I realized how poor my family really was in comparison to my hispanic class mates and made a resolve that when I got older I was going to be wealthy so that I could take care of my family. Well, sucks to be them because that’s not happening now. I am very well off now, compared to most my age, and it is largely due to the diligence I have to my budget.
To put this in perspective, my current boyfriend is almost 30 years old and has never owned his own car. He had some college that his parents paid for. Privilege. The car he drives is in his mother’s name. Privilege. The insurance, paid by his dad. Privilege. His cell phone bill, paid by his dad. Privilege. The result? I had to move in with him to save his ass from going broke. He’s stuck in a minimum wage job he hates, driving a nearly broken-down car, always tired and miserable because he was never given the lesson and the blessing of being his own sole provider. Now, his sister wants to move in with us because she sees the value of independence, even though her brother is a poor excuse for an independent if I ever did see one. (Why am I dating him? Well, I’m not perfect. I love him in-spite-of. And he’s getting better now he’s with me.)
I have a code “if its not a necessity, don’t buy it”. I know exactly when my bills are coming up and how much money I need in my account to pay them. I don’t use “auto bills” because I set myself reminders or put it on the calendar when my bill is due (a physical, paper reminder/calendar not the app on your phone you never use). If I know I’m going to need maintenance on my car soon, I don’t go buy a bunch of alcohol and throw a big party for my friends. I stay at home and read a book. Netflix, Hulu, Disney + are not necessities. Paying my electrical bill and my cell phone bill since I work from home is. Now is it okay to splurge every once and awhile and take my boyfriend and I on a trip to Winstar World Casino? Of course! But its because I saved up this money for this specific purpose and not because I blew off my credit card to live the high life. Obviously, this is a generality because I could go way more in depth and also talk about my personal failures. However, taxes don’t scare me I do them, pay them and receive them, and the world is a better place. Excel-spread sheet is my friend. A raw, physical, PAPER, calendar is my lover. I’ve never needed anyone’s help to get my life in order (though I am grateful to friends who have given me assistance at their own personal cost, and continue to pay them back x10). Even though I’ve been homeless twice due to life circumstances, I’ve been able to pull out of it by my own two feet.
#3. Doing Chores/Keeping a Clean House
Part of the same social-studies/home economics class I partook in was learning how to “keep house”. It’s all “well and good in the hood” to use an old Cali phrase, until COVID hit and suddenly everyone became a clean freak like me. I admit that I am a bit extreme. However, maintaining a clean house and doing it properly is a necessity for health and happiness. You’d be surprised at how many adults between the ages of 20-29 don’t know how to clean a toilet let alone their dishes by hand. Now, again we go back to “convenience”: the dishwasher. Just because you can put it in and hit a button, doesn’t mean you should. Did you know that you shouldn’t wash crystal in a dishwasher? Or anything with a rubber handle on it or that is made of plastic? Do you know how to properly polish silverware? Do you even know why they are called “silverware”?! We all admit that we road into adulthood on the backs of our slaving mothers or the maid our daddy paid. No excuse. Do you know you are supposed to change your toothbrush every 4 months? Do you know what are the 5 main essential cleaners to buy and how to use them? Do you know that you’re not supposed to just throw all your clothes into the wash at once, but separate them by color? Do you even know how to do laundry? Believe it or not these are skills that are becoming so rare that you can literally find Facebook pages of people asking these stupid questions. I lived with a roommate once who when she saw my chore chart asked, “what’s that?”, and when I explained she said, “oh hell no! I’m not doing that, that’s nasty”. She had never used a vacuum in her life! Let’s just say, that relationship ended very swiftly. Again, another beautiful failure of our feminist society. Ya’ll were too busy fucking your bosses or getting that “CEO” job because ‘IM A WOMAN AND I DESERVE IT’ to give-a-shit if your kid developed MRSA.
#4. Typing, Phone Etiquette and Mental Math
I work in an industry that consists mostly of middle-aged women and middled-aged men, behind a desk processing paperwork and calculating totals all day. I love it (and my coworkers). Though I cannot confirm this officially, I do believe that one of the reasons I am the youngest in my department is because it is rare to see someone in my age bracket to have these skills. I don’t mean you can look at a keyboard and find the letters to eventually spell out a sentence. I mean you can type 90 words a minute and hold your hands properly over the keyboard and type without looking at the keyboard like I am doing now. I’ve heard people say “oh it’s a gift”. No, just like having a nice singing voice isn’t a gift (fuck you Hollywood), typing is better with practice and proper training. This, I am sad to say, wasn’t even taught when I was in school! This was taught when my mother was in school. I don’t have a degree (I don’t count my AA in Theology because who gives a crap). I don’t have a vocational license. I have experience in dictation, phone etiquette, and mental math from being homeschooled through grade school and working for my grandfather in his office. At home, if we picked up the phone (because we didn’t have cellphones because we were poor) we were taught to answer “##### residence, this is Madelynne” and if the call wasn’t for us “I’m sorry they aren’t available at the moment can I take a message?” Even today when I get phone calls (yeah what a novelty I still talk on the phone!) I pick it up and say “hello, this is Madelynne”. Once when I was the hiring manager for a job I wish I never had, I was asked to call several people to set up an interview. One individual, who didn’t answer his phone, had a voice mail of “bitch—why the fuck you calling cunt? Text me hoe!” I put him down as never higher this person. Trust me as horrible as that job was, they are better off for not hiring an idiot like that. Which brings me to the next point…
#5. Job Interviews/Work ethic
“Dress to impress”; “The million-dollar words earn you a million dollars”; “Hang around a bad crowd, you’ll eventually flow down river”; “Complacency produces poverty”; are three phrases my grandpa used to always say to me. They’ve stuck with me for life, because I’ve also witnessed first-hand the truth of these statements. I’ve been the one to walk into an interview in jeans and a T-shirt and not get the job, while the guy dressed in a button down and slacks did. I’ve been the one to not know what to say and got nervous, only to be told over the phone the next day: “we want someone more confident in their abilities for this position”. I have interviewed people who dressed well and clearly took a shower before the interview, but the moment they opened their mouth, I felt like I was back on the streets of LA smoking pot and vandalizing cars. Sadly, I’ve also now seen the downfall of the standards of the hiring process. I was told by several interviewers “you’re overqualified, we don’t have the budget to pay you” simply because they lowered the standards so much to meet the new “normal” meant that someone of my etiquette, customer service and skills would have to be paid at above manager level. To me, that’s just sick. You don’t lower the standards, you train the idiots and fire the lazy. I can’t tell you the amount of times someone got promoted instead of me for the sole reason that they were a “minority hire”, then got told that they wanted to promote me and I would’ve done a better job. Let’s just say I quit those jobs, and now that person works at McDonalds and that business is up for sale. It used to be that if you showed up late to work two times, that was it – you were fired. Now, it’s normal to arrive 30 min to an hour late to work and not even get a slap on the hand. Cellphone usage at work? No problem! Just don’t let the customer see you. Oh you finished work for the day? That’s okay, sit around and do nothing so you get your full hours then leave. NO. NO. NO. Someone take these people out and shoot them! Put your best work forward always. Don’t take advantage of the system. Have the job because you EARNED the job. Be present at work, Tik-Tok can wait. Go the extra mile to make your manager look good and don’t expect recognition. Encourage diligence in others (if you even know what that word means). Always look for opportunities to learn. I’m not sorry, but I don’t have any tolerance for this generation of waste, especially those who make millions by lying to a camera.
Hold up. I didn’t say racism. Yeah, you read me, Patriotism. Patriotism defined in the Webster’s Dictionary is “love for or devotion to one’s country”. Patriotism, when I was a kid, was definitely taught in school. We saluted the flag (“under God” statement and all) every morning. Our American history class was filled with truth, however ugly, facts, however radical, but we honored our forefathers and we spoke well of the dead. Being an American meant not only pursing the American dream of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, but knowing that it was a blessing to be called an American, that our country was great for economic expanse and political diplomacy. We were taught to study history as if we lived in that time period; to understand the times and value the path they set for us. We were taught not to vote based on our feelings (or by what our favorite celebrity said), but based on evidence, logic discernment and the ability to see past our front doors. We knew what the colors Red, White and Blue of the flag symbolized and Memorial Day wasn’t just a three-day weekend. If someone spoke ill of the USA, we’d fight them for it! We’d prove them wrong. We wouldn’t hang our heads and hide! Dying for one’s country was an honor, not a horror. Living in one’s country meant being a proud citizen and minding our own business. I could, and probably will after I finish studying these poor excuse for textbooks, write an entire essay on what lies and abominations are taught in school today and why no wonder people are shooting at public schools. Some lies they teach, are so white that it makes us all look orange. My favorite holiday is the 4th of July. Not only was it a Holiday where my extended family used to get together for a BBQ and fish on the lake, but it’s always been a symbol of victory and pride in my heart. Don’t get me wrong, when someone asks me where I’m from I say “Texas” because no body wants to admit they were born in that other state. Or if someone asks me my ethnicity, I pretend they said “race” and say “I’m Irish and Israeli” (because clearly no one thinks American is an ethnicity because they don’t even know what ethnicity means). We weren’t Republicans or Democrats. We weren’t Racists or BLM. We weren’t “gen-z” or boomers. We were just Americans, and proud to be.
In conclusion, I’m sure there are more I will discover each day but those are the general topics of things I learned growing up that are nearing extinction. What can we do to change all that? How can we teach the unteachable? I don’t know. You figure it out. I need a drink.
All I know is, I owe a lot of gratitude to my mother for the life lessons she taught me. Yeah, she’s not perfect and it certainly hasn’t been the easiest relationship over the years. But she is worthy of my gratitude for these reasons and more, I’ll forever know how to tie my shoes, balance my check books and be a good citizen thanks to her diligence.
I love you, mom.