Umbrellas, Jumper Cables, and Other Things I Should Own As An Adult

There are a few things that a younger version of me wrongly assumed I would own by now, as if a box would have miraculously appeared on my doorstep labeled “Miscellaneous Adult Necessities.”
Publish date:
March 28, 2013
growing up, adults, jumper cables

Recently, I have become increasingly amazed out how much stuff I own, and how much stuff I don't own. I can have 26 pairs of shoes -- things I want -- and yet when it comes to practical objects, things I actually need, I find myself coming up empty handed.

My car battery died recently, and between me and both of my room-mates, not one of us owned a pair of jumper cables. I have been driving every day for for 9 years, how can I not own a pair of jumper cables? What kind of grown ass woman can't jump her own car? I also can't change a tire, and if I ever get a flat on the side of the highway, I will quickly enter the most over-used horror movie plot point, ever.

A few months ago, I was home alone on a Friday night having a bit of a manic episode. I began frantically cleaning out my closet when I realized I own a plethora of work clothes that hadn't been worn in ages. Clothing I like. Clothing that fits me. And why hadn't I worn them? They were wrinkled, and I didn't own an iron.

Frustrated with myself, I went out and bought an iron and ironing board, spent 4 hours ironing my clothes. I then put the iron away, and haven't touched it since.

On April 2nd, I turn 25. That's a pretty significant numeric milestone. If you asked 15 year-old-Zoe where I would be at 25, I definitely would NOT have said in my kitchen on a Friday night simmering a pot of soup, ironing stacks on stacks of skirts, and wondering when I will begin to feel like an adult.

But really? When is that going to happen? Is it ever going to happen? Or will I just continue feeling like a 15-year-old who just so happens to have landed a comfortable 9-to-5er?

When I was younger, 25 sounded so grown-up. By 25, I imagined I would either be living some glammy lifestyle, be blissfully domestic (my ovaries and I have always had a baby itch), or some combination of the two. Wrong, wrong, and wrong!

I know age, experience and maturity can't be measured by collections of things. Despite this, there are a few things that a younger version of me wrongly assumed I would own by now, as if on the first night in my very own apartment, a box would have miraculously appeared on my doorstep labeled “Miscellaneous Adult Necessities.” Things grown-ups always seem to own.

After jumper cables and an iron (I have that now!) here are a handful of things that would have been in my emergency adult kit:

An umbrella. I live in Connecticut. Weather can be a bitch. It rains a lot. And when it does, I sprint between my car and front door as fast as I can, holding my purse/bag of groceries/jacket over my head and whining about the weather. But I don't own an umbrella. This isn't even a particularly “adult” thing to own. It's just a sensible thing to own. What is wrong with me?

A watch. No, my phone is not the same thing as a watch. I go to meetings, because I am an adult, and in these very meetingly meetings, I could glance at a watch, but should probably not glance at my phone. Also, watches are more stylish wrist adornments than my ragged Ouchless hair elastic.

A hammer. I hung my mirror on the back of my bedroom door using the heel of my shoe. As you can imagine, the entire thing is very crooked.

A mop. Swiffers are wasteful, but mops are nasty and time consuming! What a dilemma. I guess you could say I'm more of a broomer...

Nice pots and pans. This may not be a must for everyone, but I spent a TON of time in my kitchen. I have 5 different kinds of blenders. But aside from my beloved carbon steel wok, which was a gift, all of my pots and pans were purchased for an average of 15 bucks a piece at Target. And they suck. They stick, they burn, they ruin yet another batch of home fried sweet potatoes. I have an 80 dollar vibrator but can't purchase a legit frying pan? What the fuck, Zoe? Say it out loud: Cast. Iron.

I should probably stop whining. At least I have a bed that isn't just a mattress on a floor right? It's just that I always figured one day I would be a sensible, well-adjusted adult who no longer abides by the “5 second rule” when it comes to eating off of the floor, and can properly hang a picture frame if need be. Maybe 26 will be the year of the hammer?

Also, speaking of failures at adulthood, let's talk about how badly I fucked up my tax returns. I had the nervous sweats all throughout my entire two-hour romance with TurboTax.

At what point is it time to buy a hammer and nails? When do you finally admit to yourself that duct tape is not always a sufficient solution? And who uses fabric softener?! Please, let me know in the comments what random items you feel you should already own, but do not. Or tweet them to me @SexyTofuBlog.