Next year this time I will be 21. Supposedly, once I hit this milestone I will be able to walk into a bar, restaurant, liquor store and legally buy alcohol. At least this is what I have observed happen with my friends that are already "legal." I'm pretty sure this is not going to be my story. Based on my most recent experience, I am pretty sure 21 will be just as challenging of a time for me to go out and socialize in places that serve alcohol. So, you are wondering about my most recent experience? Here it goes.
A few of my friends made plans over our fall study break to go to Canada, as the drinking age is 18, and we are all not legal yet in Michigan. I know study break and drinking really should not be in the same sentence, but we were going to focus on the "break" part of study break for just one night. A few drinks, some gambling, and a change of scenery would prepare us for the second part of the semester. I packed my most 21-looking outfit and my highest comfortable heels. This is what I have to think about every time we go out, literally even if the bar is 18 and over. But now I am 20, so I definitely think to myself, there will be no problem passing for 18 in Canada. Well, once again, I relaxed too soon.
We are all dressed and ready to hit the casino–or rather, lose our allotted gambling money. We walk up to the bouncer, one friend in, two friends in, three friends in, then me. It is like the buzzer on Family Feud went off. "Do you have another form of ID?" asks the bouncer. "Ugh, are you kidding me," No cajoling could get him to accept just one form of ID. My life is packed into the card case stuck to the back of my phone, but tonight I thought I could go light on the forms of ID. Back up to the 18th floor to get my college ID.
Now, this is what I'm thinking: I'm 5'1" and I'm pretty sure I am not growing anymore. I am very "petite," or so my doctor tells me instead of saying I'm small. I've always been small – at 5, I looked like I was 3, at 10, people thought I was 5, and in all honesty, without makeup at 20 I could pass for 15, and that's being kind. Adults tell me I will be so happy when I am older and still look so young. I really don't think so. I figure at this rate I can plan to be carded until I'm about 35 at least. I figure I will be 28 before they even consider not asking me for two forms of ID. I'm sorry but how embarrassing is it going to be for the next 8 years holding up the line to get into a bar or club. I just want to be able to go out with my friends, I don't even like to drink.
This looking-21 thing starts to get into my head. I start thinking about what will it feel like the first time I don't get carded. I can't imagine it. Will I be excited? Will I be insulted that the 22-year-old bouncer does not think my 30-year-old face and body looks like I am 21? Will I make as much of a scene as I do know? I'm thinking everyone should have to show two forms of ID or my petite comrades need to join with me and protest the discrimination that being short is equated with being young. I refuse to be defined by my height. And really, if I were under 18 would I be going out with 20 and 21-year-olds? Maybe I should just finally be honest and tell everyone I am a child prodigy and I'm really 15 and a junior in college. Maybe they will believe that. Lol.