Today I’m 27. Technically just after 9 PM EST (or 8 PM Cayman time). I’m not bothered by getting older as I feel it’s a natural part of life. I remember seeing a poll somewhere about whether people would WANT to be immortal and the majority said they’d rather live a natural life span. If you think about it, the idea of being, say, 25, forever sounds really great for the first ten seconds then it starts to become really kind of scary. I mean, your friends would keep getting older, married, having kids, etc, etc and you’d be stuck at 25. Then 50-60 years later (assuming your friends are lucky) they’re all gone and there you are still at 25. That sounds pretty miserable to me. In most cases I don’t care about moving with the crowd but, as far as age goes, I’m happy to march right along with it.
One thing I hear a lot of people say is that the years go by quicker and quicker. That hasn’t happened for me. I have a theory about this apparent clash. I think the years go by faster and faster as you settle into a “groove” in your life. For instance, someone who lives in the same house with the same people and does the same things every year is going to have a “faster” life in terms of perception. Similar events will blend together and their memories will seem less variant because of the similarity of their life. On the other hand, someone who travels, moves around and does different things all the time is going to “slow down” their life. Keep in mind that I’m simply talking about recollection and reflection.
Even just three years ago, I hadn’t been to a World Series of Poker. Party Poker was still serving US customers. The UIGEA didn’t exist. The NETELLER scandal hadn’t happened. I hadn’t lived anywhere outside of Philadelphia suburbs or Lancaster (where I went to college). I hadn’t lived in Atlanta, Las Vegas, Atlanta (again), Costa Rica or Cayman. My businesses like thepokerdb and PSDollars had only really taken off in the six months prior. I hadn’t even spoken to a single person at Bluff (where the db now resides). I was still like 16 months away from even meeting the guys who I now work with. I mean, tons and tons of things have happened to me even in the last three years. It really seems like an eternity mainly because my life has shifted around and the industry that I work in has evolved so much. On the other hand, if I’d worked at a more normal job in a more stable industry (say, being an accountant — which is what my college degree is for) and lived in the same place with the same people, I’m sure I would have a totally different perspective of the last three years. I’m not saying one way of living is better or worse. I just think it tends to change perspectives.
All of that being said, there really aren’t any benefits to turning 27. For me, 16 was the best birthday because it meant I could drive. I’d been waiting all year for it because I had a late birthday for my high school class (people were generally Aug 1981 until July 1982 … and I’m June 1982) so everyone else was driving before me and it drove me crazy to be the one stuck asking for rides all the time. Obviously 17 was a great one because I could go see R-rated movies without worrying about parents. 18 was nice too although I never smoked cigarettes and it isn’t like anyone pays attention to the age restrictions on porn (yea, I had to throw porn in there). And for obvious reasons 21 is a great birthday even for someone like me who isn’t a big drinker. For me, more than anything, 21 is useful because you can go places without worrying. I remember once I wanted to go to a concert and I couldn’t go because it was at a 21+ place. So that was a good birthday. And I guess 25 was good because I used to get charged sooooooooo much money to rent a car. It has gone down by like 4x since those days. So I guess not much changes for the better at 27 specifically but that doesn’t mean I’m not happy to close the chapter on 26 and see what 27 has in store.