Welcome to how I essentially do EVERYTHING.
This past Friday I spent my morning waking up to a strange smell in the apartment and taking a look out the window only to see emergency vehicles screeching to a halt in front of the building I live in. A few moments later firemen start chopping down doors and there’s an awful amount of pounding.
Pants suddenly seem like a good idea.
Fast forward 20 minutes. I’m standing outside in 20-degree weather in sandals and a hoodie that has toothpaste down the front of it, basically exuding class and sophistication, listening to the emergency response guy tell my wife and me about how to get $400 from Red Cross for a hotel.
Here’s the thing. As far as I can tell, nothing happened other than a dryer spontaneously combusting, and the entire Wauwatosa Fire Department showed up for something interesting to do. Thankfully, no one was injured, and the only damage was the dryer – a lost cause – and our time.
So, I’m half-heartedly listening to a guy, who seems rather reluctant to talk to the firemen, who keeps asking random people if they have the landlord’s number. (I do, but it’s in my apartment. The one that was apparently on fire.) And other tenants are slowly gathering around us and we’re all collectively staring at the group of firemen who are, in turn, reflectively looking at the burned out shell of a dryer.
I hear people several say “Someone should ask them what happened.”
This statement is met with a complete lack of movement. So, I take a breath, channel my inner fireman-ness, wander over to a fireman looking in my general direction, and point to the top corner of the building. “I live in that one. So, I’m just curious what’s going on and if everything is all right?”
The mass of tenants slowly creeps up on me as the fireman thankfully fails to decapitate me or eat my left arm. He waves at another fireman wearing a red helmet, who smiles, gives me a quick rundown, and then says we can go back into our apartments.
And we resume with our day, admittedly with a bit more of an adrenaline spike than I had been initially expecting.
If I rewind an hour or so from when I’m writing this post, I was sending out press releases I wrote for some spectacular martial arts students who were in Marvel’s Logan. If that’s not awesome, then I’m not actually sure what is. But, I also have no idea what the protocol is for sending out press releases or even writing them. However, Google is a wonderful thing and I managed to fake it to a point that everyone seems happy.
I’m just wondering when everyone will realize I’m actually pretending to know how to be an adult. And I go home and have in-depth conversations about Batman and always stop by the LEGO section in Target.
Which is sort of how I run everything day to day. There are a few things I absolutely know how to do, and I do them well. Things like eating and sleeping. Though there are now some rumors that I eat too fast, and I fall asleep too fast, which some people see as bad things. So, the moral of this tiny story is, even if you think you’re really good at something, the chances are you’re still doing it wrong. You’re just going to have to roll with it and pretend everything is awesome, and hope that nothing truly terrible happens. What if I forget how to sleep? Or what if I eat too fast and my stomach explodes. It might happen, bodies are weird that way.
But, the more I talk to people and experience a bit more of life every day. I’m slowly realizing that, to an extent, we’re all pretending to be really good at the thing that happens to be our profession, passion, or being. We’re all learning constantly and attempting not to make a mistake so big that A: The world ends. B: Everyone hates us.
Everything besides that is pretty workable.
It’s a glorious and comforting feeling to know that, though I’m pretending to be an adult and seem like I’m good at things, I can talk to emergency personnel or write on a professional level. Everyone else is in exactly the same boat and we all live with a mild terror of being found out for who we really are.