Ryan Alexander-Tanner

I AM, by all rubrics, an adult. I have a grown-ass job where I can decide to go get lunch whenever I want and everybody is chill about it. I'm getting those gray hairs around my temple where I look like I might ask the waiter in-depth questions about wine at dinner. However, as I go through life, I find myself constantly fucking up fundamental adult shit.

I had to Google how to clean my shower the other day. I didn't understand the notion of credit until a very stern woman at a collection agency call center told me why it was fucking up my life. You can explain away this deficit of knowledge however you like, but honestly, I think I should have learned it at school. I went to a good as hell high school with smart teachers and a cute-ass computer lab full of cute-ass colorful Macs. They did a good job, but I'm starting to think they weren't teaching us the right things.

Here's what I wish they'd covered:

BASIC CAR STUFF: When my car smells like maple syrup, is that an issue? Because it smells like a solution. A solution to the problem, "My means of conveyance doesn't properly illustrate my devotion to french toast." What happens when one of my headlights go out? I feel like there has to be a way to replace the individual light bulb, but honestly, it seems easier to just plow my car into the hungry ocean and buy a new one. If my car leaves Portland traveling at 60 MPH, and another car leaves Seattle traveling at 65 MPH, how come using my air conditioner makes my radio stop working?

ACTUAL SEX EDUCATION: I feel like sex ed was pretty much just making sure we knew what the vas deferens was. They nailed it, too. I hella know what the vas deferens is. I will never use that knowledge at any point in my life, because I'm not the chief penis surgeon at a prominent hospital. What about a class called, "What are you doing down there: Why you shouldn't treat a handjob like you're opening a stubborn pickle jar" or "She knows you know that's her butt: Why you should never try to backdoor (wink) your way into anal." Or maybe schools could teach a rigorous and definitive class on consent, geared at dudes. It may not be the vas deferens, but it could mean a VAST DIFFERENCE in the quality of our society. PULITZERS, GET AT ME.

MONEY: I wasn't allowed to leave high school without knowing that kingdom, phylum, class taxonomy business, but I was allowed to leave high school not knowing that student loan delinquency could ruin my chances of getting an apartment. It doesn't have to be a whole class—just try to make kids understand how much credit means and how bad student loans can fuck it up. Just give kids a pamphlet called "The $98 Red Bull" to make them understand how, through misuse of student loans and ridiculous interest rates, you could end up paying $98 for a Red Bull you drank while staying up to study for your biology final.  @IanKarmel