“Let me tell you something about being twenty-five,” my friend Maya said to me a few years ago. It was February, the dead of winter, and we were living in Bushwick with a band of boys, still enjoying the noise and the activity and the grime of five roommates.
Maya had just celebrated her birthday that week. Mine, still six months in the future, made me — at twenty-four — still a youngster in her eyes.
“It’s so strange,” she told me, lowering her voice as if sharing a secret. “Since my birthday, I can’t sleep through the night. The last night I was twenty-four, I slept like a baby. Then I turned twenty-five, and I’m up like clockwork, at three, four, five in the morning. It’s like — I’m old.”
We thought this over. “This must be what happens when you’re twenty-five,” she said gravely, and we sat in silence, staring, shaking our heads.