Dear Younger Me with Bruce Stockler
Dear Younger Me:
Enjoy the hair. Take photos of yourself frolicking on the beach, navigating the sides of mountains and staring solemnly into the distance from the decks of sailboats. When it is gone, get a buzz cut and never think of it again, as this will be the least of fate's indignities.
Introduce yourself to that huge bouncer at the College Avenue pub. His name is James Gandolfini.
Don't waste so much time and mental energy on pointless romantic quests. This is like jogging 10 miles a day and gaining weight.
Buy as much Apple stock as you can around 1980. Put the shares in the box with the Famous Monsters magazines.
Instead of spending three or four years working odd jobs and writing short stories that sadly rip off J.D. Salinger, hammer out a well-researched novel about a mad genius who clones dinosaurs from DNA preserved in amber and creates a theme park in which they run amok. Finish it by 1987 or 1988.
Whenever you bolt awake in the middle of the night in a cold sweat convinced you have cancer, go back to sleep. You don't. Also, Ronald Reagan will not start a nuclear war. Learn to ignore all the swirling, chaotic noise in your head and, sometime around 2008, you will be rewarded with a little pill that rubs the edges off.
Once those size 36 jeans get tight, start eating vegetables and running up and down the stairs. Do. Not. Ever. Buy. Larger. Pants.
Stop dating women in the performing and fine arts. Look for schoolteachers, bookstore managers, math geeks and veterinarians.
Produce children before you turn 30. Have piles of kids. Have 11 or 12 of them. You do not divide the total love in your heart by your number of children, you multiply it and become a larger person. And don't worry about being married or staying married or how your domestic status compares to others. Children are forever. Marriage is an interesting experiment in social engineering on its good days.
Ignore all career advice offered. When you find an opportunity to make money with your writing, take it and see if you can make some love happen. Note: Never live in Los Angeles longer than 18 months, which supersedes the previous.
Lastly, writing jokes for Jay Leno for $50 and obsessively reading newspapers will one day pay massive dividends when you get a wonderful job at a global ad agency (I know! Right?) and assume responsibility for some computer-y thing called "Twitter," which sounds as dumbass to you as it sounds to me but remains nonetheless true.