Well that’s it. The fleeting time we’ve had together has been a memorable, intertwined collusion steeped in the resonating fragility of youthful exuberance, frivolity and the brazen exploitation of vitality. You have bestowed so much distinguished virility to me that I can assure you has been reciprocated with the utmost pleasure and respect. But as our trajectories shift, so too must we. And as we part to pursue our own separate ventures know that there will always be a special place reserved in my heart for your eternally vigilant restrictions that has invariably shaped my life. You will be missed. Farewell my 20’s. May flights of angels send you hurtling towards the next unsuspecting teen who – I’m sure will abuse your power with the same earnest convictions and wasteful extravagance that had enabled me to be perpetually inebriated without fear of morning repercussions. Neglectful of the value of money (as well as saving some of it) and oblivious to the fact that life will never again be so ripe with opportunities. Yes as you can probably tell by the melancholic introduction I can no longer be considered a man in my 20’s, a label I’d been desperately clinging too like Mel Gibson grasp on reality. It’s fair to say that I hadn’t been anticipating this event with anything other than irrational fear, vacillating between vitriol and anxious restraint. Nobody enjoys getting older but it’s something you endure because you have no choice, even if at times it feels excruciatingly tedious.
I can tell you now with only 3 days experience of being 30 *shudders* that it’s a lot like being in your 20’s, just older. Sorry, I mean refined. It’s a perplexing age, neither old nor young. You’re young enough to know popular culture but a little too old to really understand it. When you reach such a milestone you find that expectations you had in your 20’s have completely changed. I began this blog when I was 24, commissioned more out of boredom than anything. But I completely expected to be an established, well renowned blogger by now, receiving commendations from my prestigious contemporaries. But that’s the kind of audacious fantasies you believe when you’re in your 20’s, treating the slow expanse of time as an almost limitless tool. However that optimism and insatiable zest for life diminishes as you become more observant to the ills this world affords. Cynicism becomes an increasingly fervent response to the protestations of day-to-day activities. You have news programmes and publications that report death with such labouring attention but present nothing of it with any distinctive concern. Whereas anything good or righteous is conveyed with deft economy, ordinarily reserved for some marginal segment at the end or page 85. When you’re presented with a world so absent of humanity it’s easy to see the bad, yet highlights what you should really appreciate at any age.
My girlfriend had planned the “celebrations” for my 30th which involved a mini pub crawl around gaming bars across London. With a select group in tow we quenched our thirsts and chortled through them, with a brief triumphant interlude of playing Mario Kart 64 and other nostalgic inducing arcade games as well as TMNT themed pizza’s, until we exerted all of our squandered consciousness and collapsed exhausted on the train journey home. And it was fun, despite receiving a mug with the statement proclaiming that “30. It’s all down hill from here”. Just what I need; visual aids to remind me just how old I’ve become, despite TMNT socks that refute my supposed maturity. And it’s here, surrounded by friends that you realise that you’re not just a games enthusiast, but a 30-year-old games enthusiast with a girlfriend, daughter and a mortgage I’ll never fully pay off. You start to reminisce about the friends you had 10 years ago and realise that none were present and you haven’t spoken in nearly 8 years. That my advancing age is validated by the strands of greying hair that have betrayed my scalp. That my body is slowly degenerating and the brief glimpses of senility are becoming more pronounced. Feeling sorry for me yet? Yet it’s funny just how little I’ve aged mentally.
I don’t feel any different now than I did when I was 18. Not a bit. I’d still rather be isolated in a dimly lit room bathed in the iridescent glow of my HD TV, slightly inebriated, coated in the stray remains of some salted snack and cradling my PlayStation controller as I battle some imminent combatant. The only difference now is that I’m old enough to know better. And I do, I just choice to ignore it. I maybe 30 but that shouldn’t precipitate for one second that I’m mature. Not a bit.
Do you feel like you’ve ever grown up? Let me know in the comments below. Cheers.