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29-Year-Olds Opting for Twenty-tenth Birthdays as Way of Extending Youth

TORONTO, ON (SP) — In a growing trend, people in their late twenties are opting out of leaving youth behind. Instead of thirtieth birthdays, this segment of the population is holding twenty-tenth birthdays. Held a year after the twenty-ninth birthday, a twenty-tenth extends one's twenties a full year, with the option to hold a twenty-eleventh birthday the following year.

Said Toronto legal clerk Georgina Dimassi, 20~11, "I just wasn't ready to deal with the whole being-thirty thing. Too depressing. Plus, I had a bunch of wasted years during my twenties, so I opted for the twenty-tenth birthday as a way to make up for lost time. I figure by the time I turn twenty-fourteen or twenty-fifteen, I'll be ready to say goodbye to my twenties and start my fourth decade for real."

By the time one turns thirty, society holds many expectations as to where one should be in terms of career, life situation, and so on. For those who took their time figuring out how they wanted to make a living, and people whose careers may have had one or two false starts, an extra couple of years before entering the thirties can be a huge stress reliever. "When you're in your twenties, no one really cares if you aren't driving the latest luxury S.U.V. Or if you don't even have a car. But having a crappy car when you're thirty? Forget it. If I save up from now until when I turn twenty-thirteen, I'll be able to make a big down payment on that Escalade I've had my eye on. Then I'll feel I can hold up my head, and say I've arrived at my thirties," said chartered accountant Deepak Patel, 20~10.

Twenty-somethings who haven't taken the plunge into the world of mortgage, marriage and kids, are finding an extended stay in the twenties a good way to deflect the inevitable questions on the subject that everyone in the situation feels obliged to raise. Said Patel, "People don't seem to care much if you're not all settled down until you cross thirty: then 'Bam!'. I've seen it happen first-hand. So I said, 'No way', held a big bash for my twenty-tenth, and hardly anyone ever asks about that stuff. I mean, I'm just a guy in my twenties, right? Lots of time for that stuff further down the road."

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