Every once in a while, a men's website will make a list of "Skills That Every Man Should Know" full of pieces of advice like, "Make a fire! Drink whisky! Tie a tie! Be Don Draper because we're pretending we still live in the 1960s for this list!" Despite those somewhat questionable tidbits, though, there are often some gems buried deep within many of these lists — gems which are actually great skills for people of any gender. So in that spirit, I present to you 10 skills that every grown-ass woman should know — because dudes aren't the only ones who should know how to change a flat tire.
My list, though? It's a little different. A lot of the skills presented in the above linked post from The Art of Manliness are pretty divorced from what people actually need to know in this day and age. (At one point the article says a useful skill to know is how to use a bow and arrow. Is it? Maybe if the Hunger Games happen?) It got me thinking about what kind of skills are actually useful for a modern woman. Learn how to find edible plants in the woods, sure (sounds like a fun hobby), and definitely figure out how to shovel snow and make eggs and things like that — but make sure you also know how to do the things seen below, too. They'll save you time, money, and make you seem like a motherfucking boss:
1. How to Trim Your Own Hair
At very least, if you have bangs, learn how to cut them yourself. It will save you loads of money.
2. How to Navigate Public Transit in a New City
You won't always just be able to rely on your phone — you need to know how to get around even with a deadzone or a dead battery. If you're unfamiliar with the routes, get a paper map and pay attention to the direction each train goes (remember, there will be at least two directions for each route — forwards and back). Direction is often signified by the final stop on the route — for instance, in New York City, the final stop on the southbound Q train is Coney Island-Stillwell Avenue and on the northbound Q train it's Astoria-Ditmars Boulevard.
3. How to Measure Yourself for a Bra
With a good-fitting bra, you'll feel more comfortable and have better posture, among a whole host of additional benefits. The r/ABraThatFits subreddit is a great resource; check out the Beginner's Guide to get started on the road to finding... well, a bra that fits.
4. How to Start a Blog
A blog can help you promote your own work and interests, and it helps employers find out more about you. It can also connect you to interesting people around the world; it's fun; and it's an actual skill that people may actually hire you for.
5. How to Run a 10-Minute Mile
You never know when you'll need to chase someone (or run away from zombies). For most able-bodied people, a 10-minute mile is a reasonable goal.
6. How to Change a Tire on Your Bike or Car
Or, if you live in a pedestrian city, your shoes are your tires, so have a familiarity with your local, reasonably priced shoe cobbler so you can get your old shoes fixed instead of buying new kicks. Whatever your "tire," be vigilant and well-prepared (and always have a spare tire stashed in your car!).
7. How to Send a Thank You Card
It's a basic life skill, and so many people either don't do it or don't do it thoughtfully. Here's Hallmark's take on it.
8. How to Figure Out Whether Something on the Internet Is Real
Because if it sounds too good to be true, it might be. Check out Snopes.com, consider the source (is the "news article" from a site that basically exists to have hoax news stories, like The Daily Currant, which I will not link to on principle? Is it from some random person's blog? Is it, god forbid, a Clickhole article that fooled you?), and see if you can get confirmation on the suspect fact from a legitimate news source like CNN or The New York Times. Oh, and if someone said Marilyn Monroe or Buddha said it, they probably didn't.
9. How to Mount a Shelf (With and Without Brackets)
Your books, cooking supplies, and knick-knacks are going to look so good, and you won't even need to get some ugly thing from the Container Store!
10. How to Organize an Event
Whether it's a protest, a rock show, or a charity drive, organizing something by yourself for the public is super punk rock and lets you make an impact on the world around you — whether it's by speaking out against trade laws or simply giving people a chance to have fun.