Last Friday, I turned thirty. Do I feel like I'm thirty? No. Do I look like I'm thirty? Frankly no, because the more weight I lose, the more I look nineteen. But I do wonder what exactly happened to my twenties. It's not like I miss them or anything. I'm just wondering how fast the time went and how that time was spent.
So, here's an inventory:
20 (Feb. 1999 to Feb. 2000) -- Half of my junior year and half of my senior year of college. Spent a lot of time listening to music, watching movies, and working at the campus radio station. Listened to a lot of post-hardcore/emo bands, thanks to the station and going to shows in Denton and Dallas.
With only one week left before I turned twenty-one, I had my first beer. A Corona, no less, and didn't love it or hate it. Yeah, I'm not somebody who wanted to start young with beer.
21 (Feb. 2000 to Feb. 2001) -- Lived in Austin for the summer of '00 so I could intern at a Top 40 station. It was a summer my friends living in Austin very kindly dubbed, "The Summer of Grubbs." This was also the summer I was in my first serious relationship, and in the fall brought my first major break-up. But also around and a little before this time, I was introduced to Red Animal War, a band who changed my life. A picture from this moment is on the cover of POST.
22 (Feb. 2001 to Feb. 2002) -- Wrapping up and graduating from college, I also entered what was probably one of the roughest times in my life. There's not a lot of fun in thinking you're worthless because you don't have a full-time job right out of college and you're having a slow falling out with one of your best friends. That was me then, and while the 11:30s were very active around that time as well, overall, it's not something I long to experience again.
Fall of 2001, I interned at a station I never thought I'd be on its airwaves. Three years later, I would be on it quite a bit.
23 (Feb. 2002 to Feb. 2003) -- Thanks to merging offices with other radio stations in the Infinity Broadcasting family, I got more and more hours. So much so that I had steady hours and a desire to move to Dallas. When I was kicked out of my apartment by my roommate (and best friend) at the time, I figured now was the time. Things were on the proverbial up and up.
24 and 25 (Feb. 2003 to Feb. 2005) -- Lots of working between a producing gig and a traffic reporting gig. I did so much work that I'd spend months working seven days a week. The only time I really took off was when I got sick. I moved closer to downtown and got a full-time gig in September '04. Things were moving really well, and I decided to write a book in March of '04. Also in this time, I also started writing for Punk Planet and started this blog.
26 and 27 (Feb. 2005 to Feb. 2007) -- Fall of '05, my full-time gig was eliminated because of budget cuts, but I still worked part-time on a regular basis. Lots of my time not spent reporting traffic went to writing and researching POST. Whenever an opportunity presented itself for an interview, I went for it. If a band was coming through town or I got in touch with somebody by phone or e-mail, an interview happened. A lot of hours were spent just doing those interviews, but by no means as many hours as other books.
After a lot of worry and wonder about when I would be full-time again and if I'd still work in broadcasting, a great opportunity presented itself. With the retirement of Jennifer Ellis, I was offered her 5am-1pm shift. I started in July of 2007.
28 and 29 (Feb. 2008 to Feb. 2009) -- After working almost five years on POST, it finally comes out in the fall of 2008. Finishing the book and publishing it felt like I had finally finished graduate school. Work has been great, and groundwork began on two new books to be published in the near future.
So, there's the rundown. You can always wonder if you could have done more, but to me, a very important thing about life is to be productive. For me, instead of trying to be somebody I'm not, I really took the time to find the opposite. And it's still going.