On Turning 30


Okay, so I'm turning thirty years old next week, and I still don't get what the big deal is. By now I would have expected to get the "So You're Turning Thirty" package in the mail, but somehow nothing has come. I've had several friends who have experienced mini-crises related to hitting this milestone, and of course it was Sitcom Gold in the 80's to have a character turn thirty years old and become the subject of endless ribbing. But for me, it doesn't seem to mean anything. I guess my car insurance will get a little cheaper? Maybe now I start making cheesy butterfly-wing art (see image of my first attempt, above right) and start wearing my glasses on a string around my neck?

I've done everything on Kiplinger's list of eight things to do before turning 30 (except travel -- I guess I did go to Canada that one time). There are apparently several books marketed at the almost-thirty set, all of which seem pretty useless. One of them includes another list of things to have done, most of which I've done (okay, I'll admit I haven't mastered the Heimlich Maneuver nor whistling with my fingers). Esquire helpfully lists things that men shouldn't do past 30, including specific guidance not to "high five in a business situation" -- message received, Esquire.

So does this thirty-year milestone mean anything? Can I expect anything to change? So far, it has struck me as an occasion for friends to kind of moan and roll their eyes, saying "Hey mister, the big three-oh's coming up, am I right?" But I don't seem to be engaging with the big life change here. As far as I can tell, I'm not over the hill yet. In fact, I've only recently located the hill.

So I thought I'd ask our over-thirty mental_floss blog readers: what has turning thirty meant to you? Did anything cool happen? Did you flip out? Bonus points for describing any benders or wild affairs conducted solely in reaction to a thirtieth birthday.