As the last semester of the term recedes into the distance, about a quarter of the extant student population is gearing up to slap ties around their necks and mortgages around their credit ratings. And as adulthood creeps forward, more than a few of those would-be cubicle jockies are starting to claw at their skin, realizing they've come all this way without thinking about the next step.
So, with a panicky bunch ready to tumble headlong into the future, useless BAs in hand, this is the time of year when the advice begins spewing in direct proportion to the fresh graduates. "Real estate is an investment," "enjoy your youth while you still have it," "avoid using laundry detergent as lubricant," and so on. In fact, anyone who makes the mistake of asking others where to go next is likely to get more helpful advice than they can possibly sort through. Parents, fellow students, obnoxious student columnists: they will all dispense free wisdom seasoned heavily with a little year-end nostalgia.
Now, I myself am a recent graduate, and so am absolutely brimming with all sorts of useful advice you wouldn't understand or benefit from anyway. With this in mind, I want to offer you a single suggestion that I feel is robust enough to serve you in your post-convocation life.
Have sex with more old people.
If you must suffer through unsolicited advice (and you must), you could do worse for a source than someone who has been around the block for the last three-quarter century or more. If you're lucky, your octogenarian lover will have a lifetime of experience ranging from finding affordable housing for the young professional to the best way to liquefy beets for use in a quack suppository. And what you lose in numbers of advice-givers you will make up for in sheer volume from the ramblings of a desperately lonely senior who has your complete and undivided attention.
At this point, you are doubtlessly wondering why you should be having sex with your elders instead of simply listening to their ravings, proof positive that your last four years have been misspent. In truth, as the enterprising university student should have learned long ago, there is no better way to coax completely uninvited intrusions into your mind than to lie naked next to someone after you have drunkenly manhandled their privates and passed out on their chest. But where your previous humping only led to awkward mornings and forgotten first names (sorry Cheryl), your 5 a.m. wakeup call with your new geriatric love pony will bring a hearty breakfast at the Elks Club and an entire morning of criticisms on your varied failings.
Finally, and not unimportantly, consolidating your advice into a single, post-coital bitch session will also have the added bonus of defraying any further comments from well-meaning friends and family. After all, nothing silences a room like those seven magical words: "I went down on Grandma's bridge club."
So embrace your fresh graduate-hood, and all the fantastic advice you are sure to receive, whether from your trusted loved ones or from the fetish-masked retired insurance broker you keep on a leash in your walk-in closet. Or just muddle through on your own. Like I give a shit.