“Because, I hate knowledge.”

That's the answer the you give. It's so audacious that it renders the question irrelevent. It's a lie, of course, but that's what makes it so amusing to you. It couldn't be any further from the truth, and thus the statement stands as the perfect answer to nosey guests. Give them the answer they least expect to hear, and enjoy their reaction.

Besides, the truth is a long story, one you dispense at your own discretion.

No one sets out to spend their youth serving other people food, refilling their drinks. Kids don't count the days until they can squander the best years of their life scraping by on the tips thrown their way. And you know that's exactly how everyone sees you. A pathetic waste. The example they can use to scare their kids straight. Do your homework or you'll end up like that unshaven boy who brought us our pizza, they say as they tuck their little children in. Of course you didn't plan for this, but you hardly consider yourself a waste.

You are 22 years old, but these days the measurements are best made in months. You've been independently supporting yourself for the last 33 months. You grew up in Seattle, but 25 months ago, you drove across the country during Super Bowl Weekend. You lived with strangers for 2 months in the tiny hippie town of Asheville, North Carolina. Then you lived in your car for 2 months, and then you fell in love. You moved to Raleigh, and made it your home for 16 months. Eight months ago, you moved again.

The truth is, this is where you end up when you don't plan. This is the place you gravitate toward. It pulls you in like a tractor beam, calls to you like a syren. It's the path of least resistance, and when you've spent your life simply trying to coast by, it might as well be paved with gold. This is the life of sleeping till noon, and staying up till 4am. A life free of furniture, mattresses, friends....entanglements of any kind.

You live in Alexandria, Virginia. You do not go to school. You can count the friends that live in your area code on one hand. You haven't seen your mother in over a year. Every friend you've made in the last 3 years, you've met on the internet. Everything you own fits in your little Honda Accord.

You see at least have a dozen movies a month in theatres. You're favorite television channels are all “educational.” Your calendar is “Daily Jeopardy!” You read every day.

The truth is, you love knowledge. But, that wouldn't be nearly as fun to say.