If I could offer you only
one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of
sunscreen have been probed by scientists,
whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty
of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty
of your youth until they've faded.
But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before
you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you can imagine.
Don't worry about the future.
Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an
algebra equation by chewing bubble
gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blind side you at 4 pm on some
Do one thing every day that scares you.
Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself.
Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
Keep your old love letters.Throw away your old bank statements.
Don't feel guilty if you don't
know what to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't
know at 22 what they wanted to do
with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't know.
Get plenty of calcium. Be
kind to your knees. You'll miss them when they're gone.
Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the
funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your
choices are half chance. So are everybody else's.
Enjoy your body. Use it every
way you can. Don't be afraid of it or of what other other people think
of it. It's the greatest instrument you'll
Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.
Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.
Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents.
You never know when they'll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings.
They're your best link to your past and
the people most likely to stick with you in the future.
Understand that friends come
and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge
the gaps in geography and lifestyle,
because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.
Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.
Accept certain inalienable
truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get
old. And when you do you'll fantasize that
when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders. Respect your elders.
Don't expect anyone else to
support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse.
But you never know when
either one might run out.
Don't mess too much with your hair or by the time you're 40 it will look like 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it.
Advice is a form of nostalgia.
Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it
off, painting over the ugly parts and
recycling it for more that it's worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen.